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Sunday, September 27, 2009

Taking Tom Blanton's Garbage Out

Brian Holtz // Sep 26, 2009 at 10:56 am

And to repeat: I’m not demanding that the LP officially endorse school vouchers. I just want people like Marc Montoni (co-leader of the Radical Caucus; LPVA secretary) to stop demanding the disaffiliation of any state LP that endorses a candidate who favors school vouchers. Thus Montoni apparently believes the LP should disaffiliate the LPNC for endorsing the voucher-advocating Michael Munger, as well as every affiliate that endorsed the sales-tax-advocating Bob Barr.

A St. Louis Accord would finally make it clear that the LP is not interested in such Montoni-style ideological purges.

Brian Holtz // Sep 26, 2009 at 11:06 am

So if streets and power lines are regulated by government as natural monopolies, should churches be cut off from them, and required to use helicopters for transportation and windmills for electricity?

I’m a Bible-thumping fundamentalist atheist who is published extensively on the Internet Infidels, the Internet’s leading anti-religion site. As bad as religion is, I’m not worried one bit that some of the profits of church-run schools might come from government tuition vouchers for poor kids. I would much rather have these kids taught by some nuns their parents chose, rather than by some bureaucrats chosen by teachers’ unions.

Brian Holtz // Sep 27, 2009 at 4:22 pm

Notice that Tom Blanton doesn't dispute that replacing government ownership of schools with tuition vouchers would be progress toward disentangling school and state.  Instead, he changes the subject and asks: "Why would a voter who thinks that vouchers are a splendid idea vote for a LP candidate over a Republican candidate when both advocate the use of vouchers, but Republicans have a good track record of being elected?"

Maybe because the GOP supports regulations and bans on gambling, suicide, substance use, pornography, gay marriage, sexual services, reproductive services, and cloning?  Maybe because the GOP makes no attempt to repeal laws regulating prices, minimum wages, maximum hours, equal pay, plant closure, family leave, hiring, firing, occupational licensure, insurance policies, zoning, rents, product safety, drug efficacy, fuel efficiency, pollution mitigation technology, parental media control, and media copying technology?  Maybe because the GOP failed to use its legislative majority to start privatizing any of our socialized systems of education, health care, health insurance, agriculture, and retirement savings -- and instead expanded Medicare to cover prescription drugs, continued to nationalize education via No Child Left Behind, and passed a trillion-dollar bailout bill?

It remains pure bullshit to claim that a non-anarchist Libertarian "looks like a Republicrat, talks like a Republicrat, sells the same tired half-measure like a Republicrat".  It remains self-delusional to say that a minarchist agenda is "trivial" and "contrived", and anyone pushing such an agenda isn't "honest" or "authentic".  Psychologically project much, Mr. Blanton?

Blanton thinks that the issue of education is "trivial bullshit" compared to issues like "national databases on citizens".  Maybe the anarchist Blanton doesn't know that education consistently scores in the top 5 in polls about voters' priorities.  (What are the odds that Blanton has any kids?)

Blanton thinks that the allegedly-reformer-dominated LP doesn't run congressional candidates who call for

  • releasing non-violent offenders and actually ending drug prohibition
  • ending the Fed’s monopoly on banking
  • ending personhood for corporations
  • talking about $56 trillion in debts and unfunded liabilities and how that is truly a crime against our own children
Blanton is simply ignorant.  All of these positions have been part of each of my three congressional campaigns.  Oh, and last October, 18 LP congressional candidates in California issued a joint press release condemning the bailouts.

It's simply inane to say that an agenda is "about minimizing change" and "keeps things pretty much the same" when it includes

  • ending all government ownership of schools
  • ending all government prescriptions for anti-pollution technology
  • privatizing all Social Security assets and contributions
  • replacing 3,457 pages of income tax code (plus 13,458 pages of IRS regulations) with a flat tax
And those were just my examples of market-oriented incremental reforms.  I never said we should renounce the goal of repealing all taxation of labor, peaceful production, and voluntary exchanges.