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George Phillies: How to Fix the LNC

Over the past few years, our party has struggled with the differences between advocates of developing tools for ballot access and advocates of growing the party by showing our practical successes.

In Pennsylvania, we made huge strides in membership and donation growth by demonstrating our strong focus on electing partisan Libertarians to office, by showing that we can work with non-Libertarian town council members to move public policy in a Libertarian direction, by showing we can watch where the money is spent, and by serving as a check in the credibility of our electoral process.

Above all, our candidates and elected officials and candidates have demonstrated to the people that we are not crazy. People saw that we are focused on making our neighborhoods, our schools, and our towns better places.

That’s professional Libertarianism. It’s Libertarianism that works.

Unfortunately, there are also Libertarians who think, with the best of intentions, that we should take the most extreme stands on every issue. Now those Libertarians are trying to take over our national party.

If you support professional Libertarian activism, activism that grows the party and elects candidates, you need to take action now:

    • Speak up on Social Media

 

    • Bring sensible libertarian friends to your local meetings

 

    • Contact your state and local party officers:
      Tell them you will stand with them to help elect Libertarians!
      Tell them you want sensible messaging to attract voters, not to drive them away.

 

    • Attend your state and local conventions

 

    • Support and vote for party officers who support sensible Professional Libertarianism. Vote against candidates who, with good intentions, want to bring extremism for the sake of extremism to our party.

For more on this topic, bookmark LPTorch.com! Full site launches soon!

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19 Comments

  1. Andy Andy January 31, 2022

    “In Pennsylvania, we made huge strides in membership and donation growth by demonstrating our strong focus on electing partisan Libertarians to office, by showing that we can work with non-Libertarian town council members to move public policy in a Libertarian direction, by showing we can watch where the money is spent, and by serving as a check in the credibility of our electoral process.”

    A lot of the new members who have come in in Pennsylvania are because of the recruitment efforts of the Mises Caucus.

    Mises Caucus members were involved in running for local offices in Pennsylvania (and in other states), and in fact several Mises Caucus members got elected to local offices, including the founder and Chairman of the Mises Caucus, Michael Heise.

    “That’s professional Libertarianism. It’s Libertarianism that works.

    Unfortunately, there are also Libertarians who think, with the best of intentions, that we should take the most extreme stands on every issue. Now those Libertarians are trying to take over our national party.”

    I assume that this is a reference to the Mises Caucus, and if so, I would say that this is a mischaracterization of it. While the Mises Caucus does have a strong libertarian message, the Mises Caucus is not explicityly anarcho-capitalist or minarchist. Many in the Mises Caucus are anarcho-capitalists, but not everyone, but regardless of this, I am not aware of anyone in the Mises Caucus who does not support incrementalism, so long as the incrementalism goes in the right direction. I would say that the Mises Caucus is pragmatic, it is just that the Mises Caucus does not consider running candidates like Bob Barr or Gary Johnson or Bill Weld or Lincoln Chafee to be pragmatic, because they were so weak on libertarian principles.

    Ron Paul is the most successful elected libertarian ever by most measures, even though he got elected under the Republican label, he has maintained a Life Membership in the Libertarian Party since the 1980’s, and he was and is widely known as a libertarian. Everyone in the Mises Caucus is a big Ron Paul fan.

  2. Nonya Nonya January 31, 2022

    In Pennsylvania, recruitment efforts have been through both Mises and the Executive Director. However, fundraising has been solely through the efforts of the Executive Director and other leadership.
    There are absolutely individuals who are affiliated with Mises who are professional and do not ascribe to the edgelord tactics. There are also individuals associated with Mises who effectively work with all members of the party.
    The issue is the groups of Mises who refuse to work with existing leadership, who choose to be adversarial. Not only do these groups become adversarial, they are clearly attempting to take over affiliates. In some cases, are clearly violating bylaws.
    I agree it will take people reaching out and using their voice to show the behaviors are not acceptable, including Mises Caucus members. If you disagree, don’t vote rank and file, vote YOUR conscience.

  3. George Phillies George Phillies January 31, 2022

    “I assume that this is a reference to the Mises Caucus, and if so, I would say that this is a mischaracterization of it.” Your sentence disproves itself.

  4. Ed Johnson Ed Johnson January 31, 2022

    Sounds reasonable.

  5. I.L. Freeman I.L. Freeman January 31, 2022

    Thank you for publishing this.

  6. Andy Andy January 31, 2022

    “Nonya
    January 31, 2022 at 04:26
    In Pennsylvania, recruitment efforts have been through both Mises and the Executive Director. However, fundraising has been solely through the efforts of the Executive Director and other leadership.”

    Yes, others in the LP of PA who are not affiliated with the Mises Caucus have done some things to move the LP of PA ahead. The LP of PA was in a slump for a long time, and went through several years of dysfunction. It is good to see that the LP of PA is finally making noticeable progress.

    One thing to consider though about fundraising is that a lot of the money that the Mises Caucus has brought in has gone to the Mises PAC. The Mises Caucus has recruited lots of new people into the party, in PA, and across the country. Most of the growth in LP membership over the last few years has been because of the Mises Caucus. This has increased donations to the state parties, and to the national party, but if all you look at is what goes to the state and national party, you are not seeing the entire picture, as the Mises PAC has been gaining a lot of traction, and yes, the Mises PAC has donated to LP candidates around the country.

    “The issue is the groups of Mises who refuse to work with existing leadership, who choose to be adversarial. Not only do these groups become adversarial, they are clearly attempting to take over affiliates. In some cases, are clearly violating bylaws.”

    I don’t think that it is a case of people in the Mises Caucus refusing to work with existing leadership in the party. It is more a case of some people in existing leadership in the party being hostile to the Mises Caucus, and it has in fact been these people who have been the ones violating by-laws and pulling dirty tricks (see what happened in New Hampshire, Delaware, and Massachusetts, for just a few examples).

    Caucuses in the Libertarian Party are nothing new. Remember the Reform Caucus, back in 2005-2006, who led to the gutting of the LP’s platform at the national convention in Portland in 2006, which some people called the Portland Purge. It was the Reform Caucus which set the stage for running watered down presidential tickets with people like Bob Barr and Gary Johnson on them.

    I have yet to meet anybody in the Mises Caucus who is not what I would call a strong libertarian. This is not to say that everyone in the Mises Caucus agrees with everyone else in the caucus on every detail of everything. There is disagreement within the Mises Caucus on things, however, I find that level of disagreements within the Mises Caucus tend to be less than disagreements with some other factions of the party, and, I also find that even when Mises Caucus members have disagreements within the group, that these disagreements are discussed in a far more rational, and polite, manner, than what I have seen an experienced with some other factions within the Libertarian Party.

    Reality is that the Mises Caucus is simply outcompeting other factions of the party via good old fashioned hard work. The Mises Caucus is also more in tune with a lot of the small “l” libertarians out there than are a lot of other people in the LP. The libertarian movement has always been much larger than the Libertarian Party. The Mises Caucus is bringing in a lot of the people who supported the Ron Paul r3VOLution of 2007-2012, followers of the Mises Institute, readers of LewRockwell.com, and people who listen to podcasters like Tom Woods and Dave Smith.

    I am looking forward to the national convention in Reno. I think that Angela McArdle is going to be elected as National Chairwoman, and that the Mises Caucus will gain a majority of the LNC seats.

    I see it as kind of like taking the car keys away from a drunk driver. The people who have been running the Libertarian Party for the last 16 years or so have been running the Libertarian Party into the ground. Dues paying membership went down, the number of elected Libertarians went down, and the party ran candidates at the top of its ticket for 3 presidential elections in a row, 2008-2016, who did not even really represent the libertarian philosophy, and even I don’t know of anyone in the Mises Caucus who thinks that Jo Jorgensen was an ideal candidate, the consensus among the Mises Caucus is that Jorgensen at least represented an improvement over the 2008-2016 candidates, and if it had not been for the Mises Caucus, the LP likely would have ended up with Lincoln Chafee or Jim Gray, or both of them, on the presidential ticket, which would have been basically a continuation of 2008-2016 with having philosophically weak candidates on the presidential ticket. The Mises Caucus moved the Overton Window in the LP to where the likes of Lincoln Chafee and Jim Gray could not get nominated for the presidential ticket.

    The Libertarian Party has never lived up to its potential. I see a lot of signs that the Mises Caucus is reversing this negative trend.

  7. Carol Moore/Secession.net Carol Moore/Secession.net January 31, 2022

    Mises Wise: change the name so bad actors don’t defame Mises; kick out the edgelord narcistists and actual sexists, racists, antisemites, homophobes, et al

    Right now have pinched nerve seriously impinging on right hand (which already suffering from lymphedema and neuropathy – don’t get old or cancer!) Anyhoo, have 35 years of STUFF on Ron Paul and crowd and lots of Mises stuff last 5 years. Will put some stuff into https://misescaucusexposed.net/ – when can get back to typing!

    I can keep putting a few things a day on https://twitter.com/misesEXPOSED Couple days behind but will get back to work soon.

    Who’s doing the big expose on the nutty hitler loving woman running for Governor on LPNH ticket? UGH

    Keep up good work, George!

  8. Andy Andy January 31, 2022

    “Carol Moore/Secession.net
    January 31, 2022 at 17:00
    Mises Wise: change the name so bad actors don’t defame Mises; kick out the edgelord narcistists and actual sexists, racists, antisemites, homophobes, et al”

    It is certainly nice to see the Carol Moore’s of the LP slipping into irrelevancy.

  9. Eveline Brownstein Eveline Brownstein January 31, 2022

    I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, the Mises Caucus is a misnomer. It’s not a caucus of the LP. It’s a self-serving PAC with the sole goal of fundraising for itself. It’s found a great way to do that. A way that will eventually strip the LP of any viable way to raise funds. Mises folks who get elected to LP national or affiliate office are obligated to give monthly donations to the PAC, which I find peculiar if their goal is to grow the LP. It’s not. It’s to grow it’s own fundraising base. That’s the reason they don’t care where they recruit members from and why their members’ ideals are frequently misaligned with Libertarian principles.

    To me, the major concern of this misalignment is that they are pushing to remove three current platform poitions that have been central to the LP: the immigration plank, the abortion one and the anti-bigotry one. Their members seem very committed to the kinds of changes to the basic tenets of our party that distinguish us from other political parties and the reason why many are members.

  10. Andy Andy February 1, 2022

    “Eveline Brownstein
    January 31, 2022 at 20:46
    I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, the Mises Caucus is a misnomer.”

    I’ve been in the LP for over 25 years, and I’ve never heard of you.

    “It’s not a caucus of the LP.”

    Everyone who is in the Mises Caucus is a member of the Libertarian Party, and Mises Caucus members are very much involved in party operations. The Mises Caucus is just a much a part of the Libertarian Party as is any other caucus.

    “It’s a self-serving PAC with the sole goal of fundraising for itself.”

    The Mises PAC is not just raising money for the sake of raising money, or to line anyone’s pocket. The Mises PAC supports candidates for internal party offices, and for political offices.

    “It’s found a great way to do that. A way that will eventually strip the LP of any viable way to raise funds. Mises folks who get elected to LP national or affiliate office are obligated to give monthly donations to the PAC, which I find peculiar if their goal is to grow the LP. It’s not. It’s to grow it’s own fundraising base. That’s the reason they don’t care where they recruit members from and why their members’ ideals are frequently misaligned with Libertarian principles.”

    I have not heard of any requirement for Mises Caucus members to have to donate to the Mises PAC.

    The Mises Caucus urges its members to donate to both the Mises Caucus and the Libertarian Party, at the county, state, and national level, and also to Libertarian Party candidates that they support. The Mises Caucus has actually brought in most of the new party members over the last few years, and all of these new party members have donated to LP national and/or to their state party affiliate.

    Everyone who I have encountered in the Mises Caucus is a strong libertarian. I have yet to meet even one person in the Mises Caucus who is like a Gary Johnson or Bill Weld type, or some other type of weak libertarian or a fake libertarian.

    “To me, the major concern of this misalignment is that they are pushing to remove three current platform poitions that have been central to the LP: the immigration plank, the abortion one and the anti-bigotry one. Their members seem very committed to the kinds of changes to the basic tenets of our party that distinguish us from other political parties and the reason why many are members.”

    Abortion is NOT central to libertarianism, and it is in fact something on which there has always been a lot of internal debate in libertarian circles, and in the Libertarian Party in particular.

    The current immigration plank has only been in place since 2016, when a bunch of left-Libertarians, led by Tom Knapp, changed the previous platform plank, which said that the Libertarian Party did not support the entry into the country of foreign nationals who pose a threat to life, liberty, or property (maybe not an exact quote, but it was close to that). Ironically, I am in part the one who sparked Tom Knapp to spearhead this change, because I brought up in debates with him online, including right here on IPR, that the LP’s platform at the time recognized that not every foreigner should be able to immigrate here. Tom celebrated this victory after the convention, but I pointed out that this was the same convention who told us that Gary Johnson and Bill Weld were libertarians, and that they should be on the presidential ticket. I think that this new platform plank that Tom Knapp got rammed through by a bunch of leftists and softball libertarian fakes and flakes, is actually in contradiction to another platform plank about property rights, because by advocating that there should be unlimited, unrestricted immigration, and that nobody can be kicked out, one is advocating AGAISNT exclusivity to property, as in they are say that the property that makes up the USA is not just for the people who are already here, but for EVERYONE on the planet, which means that there is no exclusivity to property, which actually UNDERMINES property rights, and in addition to this, if everyone can come here, and nobody can be kicked out, this means that people who are hostile to liberty can come here, and if the people who are hostile to liberty outnumber those who support liberty, well, so be it, there’s nothing we can do about it, we just have to sit back and accept it.

    Immigration policy, like abortion, has long been a hotly debated topic within libertarian circles.

    The anti-bigotry plank has ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to do with the libertarian philosophy. Libertarianism is about property rights and the non-aggression principle. A person can hold whatever views they want, including views that some would call bigoted, and still be a libertarian, so long as they are adhering to the Non-Aggression Principle and property rights. Bigotry is a matter of OPINION and SOCIAL PREFERENCE. I would wager that everyone engages in some form of bigotry in their life, and if they do not, they are almost certainly lying. They may chose to associate or not associate with people who dress in a certain manner, or who share certain interests, or who look a certain way, or who are from a similar economic class. Do most people who are not homeless go hang out with homeless people on the streets? Do they invite homeless people who live on the streets into their homes? Do they invite homeless people from the streets into their social circle? Most people try to AVOID homeless people on the streets. Even the people who occasionally give them money, or volunteer at shelters or places that feed the homeless, don’t really invite them into their social circle. There is most definitely bigotry toward homeless street people, and I’d be all of the Libertarians who are making a big fuss over bigotry are themselves bigoted toward homeless people. This is just one example, I could come up with more.

    The anti-bigotry plank should be deleted from the platform, since it has NOTHING to do with actual libertarianism. It could be deleted and replaced with NOTHING, or, it could be replaced by something like, “The Libertarian Party is open to all people, regardless of their race, ethnicity, or sexual orientation, so long as their adhere to libertarian principles.” This would show that the Libertarian Party as an organization is open to all who agree with the ideology of the party, but it does NOT make a value judgment based on anybody’s SOCIAL PREFERENCES, so long as those preferences do NOT violate property rights and the Non-Aggression Principle.

  11. Eveline Brownstein Eveline Brownstein February 2, 2022

    To “Andy” too afraid to give his last name so he can be identified, but will trot out the tired “you’re not Libertarian” slur to trash other (long time) Libertarians as not Libertarian.

    I haven’t heard of you either and I voted for Harry Browne for President in an election where he got a whooping ~400 votes.

    Thanks for playing.

  12. Ed Johnson Ed Johnson February 2, 2022

    “Andy”, could you at least try five seconds with a search engine before you trot out the whole “I never heard of you” song and dance? I think that’s actually longer than it took me to find

    https://ballotpedia.org/Eveline_H._Brownstein

    A few more seconds of googling and I discovered she is or was treasurer of NJLP, ran for Lt Gov in 2021 and State Assembly in 2017 and 2013. That’s as far as I got and more than I would have done were it not for you. So….thanks?

    Ms. Brownstein, “Andy” apparently thinks he knows everyone in your party. Yeah, he’s that guy. You know, Andy. Ask any active party member in any state, say Andy Libertarian, and they will know exactly who you mean, and if they gave their name he will know them too. Yeah right?

    As for himself, he says no one may question him, since “some people here have met him” and because he says he has been to lots of Libertarian conventions and events and appears in a bunch of youtube videos and news articles. I told him I don’t care but if someone did, how exactly would they check his claims? What would be the search term….”andy libertarian party”? There must be lots of guys named Andy who are active in your party. I think he said something like “too vague?!?!?!?!” but there may have been even more exclamations.

    The thing is, I really don’t care, because I don’t think people who are in a position to doxx themselves without too much career/family/social/other risk are the only ones who should be allowed to express an opinion, but the hypocrisy is a bit much. Anyway, now that you have met part of the “welcome committee,” here is an actual welcome. Please don’t let “Andy” discourage you and anyone who may be considering participating here from doing so.

  13. Andy Andy February 3, 2022

    “Eveline Brownstein
    February 2, 2022 at 08:46
    To ‘Andy’ too afraid to give his last name so he can be identified, but will trot out the tired “you’re not Libertarian” slur to trash other (long time) Libertarians as not Libertarian.”

    I have been in the Libertarian Party since July of 1996. I have followed this stuff pretty closely since then, and I have been to a lot of party meetings and conventions in a lot of states. I have also done a little bit of party fundraising, and I still have lists from several years ago with thousands of donors on them. So I met, known, seen, or heard of a lot of Libertarians. I was not familiar with you before now.

    Independent Political Report, and several others sites, like Ballot Access News, have been hit with a lot of trolls posting under fake names. I was not sure if you were one or not. It looks like you are who you say you are, so I will assume that this is the case. Sorry for the confusion.

    Here’s a video of me making TV news in Wisconsin in 2020 when I went there to gather petition signatures to place Libertarian Party presidential candidate, Jo Jorgensen on the ballot. Note that a good 90% of the people on the beach were not wearing masks, including the news reporter, who I asked to sign the petition, who was relaxing on the beach on the shore of Lake Michigan, in Milwaukee. They all signed my petition, and then she told me that she is a reporter with a local TV news station, and she asked me if she could do a story about me getting signatures on this petition. I said yes. I actually had the mask down at least 90% of the time, and I only pulled it up if I was asking somebody who was wearing a mask to sign the petition, but the reporter thought it would look good for the camera if I had the mask on while she was filming for the story. I did not have much time to ponder whether or not I was going to wear the mask, so I just pulled it up. Anyway, after you click the link and try to click on the video, a box will pop up asking you to sign up for Spectrum News, but there is a link below the sign up link that says, “Ask Later.” and if you click that one, it will let you watch the video.

    https://spectrumnews1.com/wi/milwaukee/news/2020/08/23/libertarian-candidate-jo-jorgensen-set-to-be-on-november-ballot#

    “I haven’t heard of you either and I voted for Harry Browne for President in an election where he got a whooping ~400 votes.

    Thanks for playing.”

    Well, I have been in the Libertarian Party for over 25 1/2 years. I’ve been to 8 national conventions, as well as multiple state conventions (I have attended state conventions in several states). I ran for the Libertarian National Convention at two national conventions, but did not win either time. I have a YouTube channel with over 8,000 views, plus I have been on a few other people’s YouTube channels. It is not as though I’m an unknown figure in the Libertarian Party.

    Now, as far as Harry Browne goes, he received 485,000 and something votes in 1996, and he received 384,000 and something votes in 2000. Thjs may not sound good, BUT, you have to dig a little bit deeper to put it in context.

    When Harry Browne ran in 1996, he had to run against the much higher profile Ross Perot and Ralph Nader. When Harry Browne ran in 2000, he had to run against the much higher profile Ralph Nader and Pat Buchanan. There were also other minor parties at the time in both of those races which had a significant amount of ballot access in the US Taxpayers Party in 1996, which later changed its name to the Constitution Party by the year 2000, and the Natural Law Party. So Harry Browne was up against a lot of competition for the minor party and independent candidate vote, much more so than Gary Johnson was in 2012 and 2016, and than what Jo Jorgensen was in 2020.

    Although the internet was around in 1996 and in 2000, not as many people were on it back then as are on it today, and there were no online videos back then. The internet has made it easier to reach people, and there are now more people online than ever.

    Also, not as many people knew what a libertarian was back in 1996 and in 2000, or that the Libertarian Party existed. Recognition of the word libertarian has increased a lot since then. This is in large part thanks to the Ron Paul rEVOLution of 2007-2012, but lots of others have helped publicize the word libertarian as well.

    So those factors all played a role in Harry Browne’s vote totals, which may not sound impressive, but they were not really that bad when you consider what he was up against at the time. The great success of the Harry Browne campaigns is that he educated and inspired a lot of people to become libertarians, and to get involved with the Libertarian Party and movement, myself included. Harry Browne brought in a lot of new people who became hardcore libertarians, and many of them are still active in the party and/or movement today. Dues paying membership went up to its all time high peak in 2000-2001, when it got to somewhere around 33,000-34,000 and something. It is actualy pretty sad that we are in 2022, and the LP has yet to reach or surpass that number of dues paying members from way back in 2000-2001.

  14. Andy Andy February 3, 2022

    Ed Johnson said: “Ms. Brownstein, ‘Andy’ apparently thinks he knows everyone in your party.”

    Interesting that you say, “your party,” implying that you are not involved with the Libertarian Party. For a guy who is not involved in the Libertarian Party, you sure do seem to take a great interest in it.

  15. Ed Johnson Ed Johnson February 3, 2022

    Another weekday morning means another stupid conference call at work that’s somehow very vaguely related to my job title. I have nothing to add to the call and nothing to learn from it, but I have to listen to a bunch of people prattle on and on, with the ones doing most of the talking being a bunch of ass-kissing bullies who are climbing the ladder by stepping on people and taking credit for other people’s work, people with no life outside work, attention junkies, and people who stumbled into jobs they are not qualified for trying to prove how smart they are. Sadly, I have to listen to this crap for hours every day to pay the bills. So ..I guess I’ll play the Andy game again, although it’s getting boring already.

    “Andy”, yes, I said your party. You are a good illustration of why. You would think a smaller party that wants to get bigger would welcome people who take an interest in it. Not act all suspicious about why anyone other than a monthly dues paying, culty pledge signing, politically extreme person who’s ready and willing to doxx themselves and has nothing better to do on evenings and weekends than to run around to party socials and business meetings, run for or get talked into taking obscure internal positions, and travel to other cities and states for more of the same, would want to so much as take an interest or express an opinion about it.

    So, let’s say somebody feels sick of the direction of the Democrats and Republicans and maybe feels like the libertarians, other than being too extreme, are closer to the mark than any other third party. Well I guess that’s when fish bowl superstars like “Andy” demand to see your paper’s, where you live, financial records, where you and your spouse work, where your kids go to school, why they haven’t already heard of you, which party covens you got your butt sniffed at, and oh by the way let’s make sure we welcome white power bigots and freaks to be prominently associated with this party, etc.

    Most people learn to stay far away after an encounter or several like that. Taking the most extreme positions imaginable is part of your problem, but culty behavior and fish bowl superstars are another. Maybe keeping other people away is the point, otherwise how can someone like “Andy” stay so important and famous that everyone only needs one name to instantly know who he is like Bono or Madonna or something?

  16. Ed Johnson Ed Johnson February 3, 2022

    One thing doesn’t add up though. Usually even a fish bowl superstar wouldn’t miss a chance to promote his YouTube channel while bragging about how many views it has. I guess “Andy” is such a big superstar that everyone is already supposed to know it though. Never mind, I don’t know what I was thinking there?

  17. Andy Andy February 3, 2022

    I have posted links to my YouTube channel here before, including recently on an open thread, within the last couple of months. If you search the archives here, you will find article posts from my channel.

    I only have a little over 8,000 views, so it really is not a big channel, but I intend to try to put up a lot more videos and get a lot more views.

  18. Andy Andy February 3, 2022

    I am all in favor of new people coming into the Libertarian Party, so long as they support the principles.

    There have been a lot of problems here at IPR and on similar sites with trolls, so this is why I am on guard for them.

  19. George Phillies George Phillies March 2, 2022

    The relevant web site is currently savethelp.org. For unclear reasons, the lptorch link cares whether or not you prepend a www. to it, for reasons not within my comprehension.

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