These opinions warrantied for the lifetime of your brain.

Loading Table of Contents...

Saturday, May 31, 2008

Roundup of Calls For LP Unity (and Divorce)

Tom Knapp declares that the Barr/Root victory in Denver "was as accurate a reflection of the desires of the party's membership as our processes were able to produce", and says the ticket deserves a clean slate and to be supported until and unless it gives reason not to be.   I chime in to agree that our ticket deserves a clean slate but not a blank check, and that federalism is an excellent means but is not our end.  In demanding repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act I argue that we should treat the U.S. Constitution as a sword with which to divide and conquer the nanny state, rather than a shield that protects 50 nanny states from condemnation by the LPUS.  The Outright Libertarians blog posts a video clip of Barr promising to work to repeal DOMA.

Jerome Tuccille, 1974 LPNY candidate for governor and early movement historian, is a radical libertarian who supports Barr because "maintaining ideological purity is the job of philosophers and hard-core factions, while achieving political impact on selected issues is the job of politicians and political parties".

Susan Hogarth reportedly writes on LPradicals that the Barr-Root ticket "will be a good test case for the argument that if the LP just sounds like the Better Republican Party, it will become a larger and more vibrant political organization. Since they have the perfect candidates to test this theory, let us support the Party as much as possible this election season to give it a fair test."  I agree only to the extent that the top half of the ticket speaks as forcefully for the centrist libertarian positions of our new platform as I know the bottom half will.

A female blogger posts a Dear John letter to the LP, and Classically Liberal posts an obit entitled Libertarian Party 1972-2008.  "CLS" is seriously fact-challenged, since 1) the LP was founded in 1971 not 1972; 2) no "deal" was required to get Root voters to choose Barr over Ruwart; 3) Root hadn't "sworn he would never take the vice-presidential" spot; 4) Stephen Gordon didn't start TPW, he bought it; 5) any glance at the Denver speakers lineup (David Nolan, Barry Hess, Walter Block, Anthony Gregory three times, etc.) will tell you that Barr didn't control it; etc.   His comments on the Platform are indicative of his perceptiveness, since in fact the Platform did not change its position on abortion or immigration, it does not (and will never) mention "states' rights", and it retained its specificity on gay rights even as the overall Platform was made much more compact.

Brad Spangler wants the LP to switch its branding from "libertarian" to Cato-style "market liberal".  Roderick Long explains that it's good for radicals to leave the LP, but it's also good to have radicals to remain in the LP and fight for it.  This was prompted by a long but interesting discussion from which some Less Antman comments are required reading.  He says perceptively that "radical minarchists" (like David Nolan?) are "just anarchists unable to admit that a government that doesn’t aggress, doesn’t tax,and allows secession isn’t a government as most market anarchists define it".  He also says: "I don’t hate the state any more than I hate unicorns. There are only people: government is a word people use to legitimize aggression, and if we remove the legitimacy from acts of aggression, our job is basically done. The rest is crime control."

Brian Miller digs up some positions of Christine Smith circa late 2006 that might make those 6 delegates regret their first-round votes for her:
  • Decrease military budget by ending unnecessary foreign interventions and waste, with some of that money applied toward immediate overhaul of the American education system--education becoming one of the top priorities of the nation, as well as social welfare-provision of basic necessities to our people
  • Recognized and respected business leaders of our nation selected to negotiate/oversee foreign trade polices and treaties.
  • Universal healthcare with freedom of choice; socialized medicine for all American citizens.
  • People would have choice whether to purchase private insurance or government-funded/affordable insurance and other such necessities. [...] A blend of socialism and capitalism to maintain the free market economy in most areas of our lives giving us the ingenuity of creative endeavors and achievements and the rewards for those who produce and create, while simultaneously providing for all the basic necessities of life such as food, housing, healthcare, education, and areas such as water, electricity, etc.