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Thursday, May 8, 2008

Tom Knapp Almost Gets It

Tom Knapp, I am *not* "attempting to preclude the possibility that one particular type of libertarian (the Rothbardian anarchist) might ever put its ass on any seat at any table in the party".  I repeat:
BH) If Ruwart were running merely as the "best spokesperson for liberty" i.e. consensus libertarianism, then she would join Root and Phillies in my top tier of preference.  But since she's explicitly running to be the LP's ideological standard-bearer not just for this campaign but for the next four years, she is in effect asking us to hold an LP referendum on her "plumbline" anarchist brand of libertarianism. (BH
I haven't seen you address any of the Ruwart quotes I produced, saying she should be nominated because she "has the big picture" and is "fully attuned to the Libertarian philosophy".  She says the other candidates "haven't quite gotten the whole picture yet.  That's OK, they will one day. But they don't want to be running as President when they really can't see the full picture".
I would criticize Barr the same way if he said his constitutionalist ideology made him the purest Libertarian in the race.  I've indeed criticized Kubby for calling himself a "plumbline" candidate, even though Steve doesn't have any of these Rothbard's Heels that Ruwart has.  I'm not trying to "write out of the party" either Rothbardianism or anarchism; I'm just trying to give the other schools of libertarianism the same veto power over Platform content, so that none of the schools of libertarianism are relegated to the kids' table.  I'm encouraged that you're getting very close to being able to accurately state my position, but you're not quite there yet.  However, none of the other radicals are even close. :-)
Steve LaBianca, if you are saying that you need my help in finding you statements that I or the Reform Caucus assert, then you are simply beyond my help.  They're out there, in notoriously copious quantities.  Find 'em, quote 'em, answer 'em.  I'd hit you with a few URLs, but TPW is set up to maximize anonymous venom and minimize intelligent references to substantive content.  I guess that helps ratings or something.
Alex Peak, it's specious to claim that the LP's anarchists "are simply defending themselves (in most cases, but admittedly not all) against attacks made by minarchists."  The LP's anarchists -- a minority of around 15% of the party according to data I can show you -- are desperately trying to hold onto a three-decade-old tacit veto privilege over Platform content.  There are around a dozen statements in the 2004 platform that violate fundamental minarchist libertarian principles.  As far as I've been able to tell, there's only statement one that violates your fundamental anarchist principles -- and it's only because you agree with Rothbard's wild idea that parents have a right to starve their kids. 
This asymmetry between us is no coincidence.  It means that the LP considers my libertarian principles to be inferior to yours.  That's not big-tent.  Tom Knapp can pretend all he wants that I want to keep anarchists out of all seats of influence in the LP, but it's actually Starchild who frankly admits he wants the LP to systematically keep non-radicals like me out of such seats of influence.  You can pretend all you want that the LP's anarchists are embattled, but the objective fact remains that even we reformers with an allegedly "stacked"/"dominated" PlatCom are not trying to write any new minarchist principles into the Platform.  We're just trying to make the Platform a level playing field.  That's why, for all the complaining about reformers, you radicals are offering zero substantive criticism of our draft platform's principles. Instead, it's just Sipos-style "Republican lite" name-calling.  Weak.
Your cell phone is not a site -- is not a set of spatial coordinates.  For you to make that argument suggests that you haven't researched geolibertarianism very deeply.  Read the essay by Dan Sullivan on "Royal Libertarianism".  Read anything by Fred Foldvary.  I suspect you spend way too high a percentage of your time reading stuff you agree with.  That makes for a very brittle worldview.
To everybody else: all this talk of reformers "ousting" or "purging" anyone is just nonsense.  If you want to see how to push people out of the LP, go see how a pro does it and read the old Rothbard newsletters. Hint: it doesn't involve cutting up membership cards, nor does it involve merely criticizing people's ideological grip on the Platform.  There's a lot of room in between those two extrema.  The only people who today can arguably said to be trying to make their opponents uncomfortable in the LP are those who try to use the Pledge and Platform to declare other mainstream schools of libertarianism to be ideologically inferior to their own. No leading reformer is doing that, but nearly all leading radicals are.  They even made a list of their names -- it's called Restore04.