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Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Will the Real LP Radicals Please Stand Up?

Susan Hogarth, with radicals imagining me in a "cabal" with people I've never even spoken with, and opining that I'm the pseudonymous poster who outed Dr. Ruwart for the libertarian principles that she and Kubby and Nolan just spent a recorded hour being too embarrassed to defend, I confess that I can't guarantee that the radical paranoia splashing all around me hasn't touched me with a few drops.  :-)
I'm glad to hear you're willing to reveal at least one name from your set -- list? -- of the "many LP members and candidates" whose "writings and comments" are Pledge-violating.  Can you elaborate on your plans to use the Advertising and Publications Review Committee to effect your "housecleaning"?  Are you aware that the LNC has no authority over the statements of "LP members and candidates" who are not either LP staff or on the LP presidential ticket?
You write: "What Libertarians believe is that any of the desirable tasks that government accomplishes coercively can be accomplished better and without coercion via the free market."   
No, what unites Libertarians is the belief that, as the Platform says, we should "divest government of all functions that can be provided by non-governmental organizations or private individuals" and that "government exists to protect the rights of every individual including life, liberty and property".   David Nolan tells us that the Pledge is merely a promise not to revolt, so it's quite odd for you to want to "houseclean" statements that you say go beyond the LP's official policies even as you yourself are promulgating your own interpretation of the Pledge and your own vision of "what Libertarians believe" that is out-of-sync with the LP Platform.
True LP radicals want to take the LP back to its roots.  The original unanimously-adopted 1972 LP Statement of Principles said: "the sole function of government is the protection of the rights of each individual", and "government has only one legitimate function, the protection of individual rights".  This language was removed by anarchists -- some might apply Christine Smith's term "infiltrators" to them -- via a loophole in the original bylaws that allowed a one-time change in the SoP at the 1974 convention via a 2/3 vote, with any subsequent changes requiring a 7/8 vote.
Will the real LP radicals please stand up?