Steve G.

Archive for May, 2008|Monthly archive page

LFV Housekeeping: Comments

In Libertarian on May 31, 2008 at 8:14 pm

We seem to be having a problem with some legitimate comments being caught in the Akismet spam filter.  Unfortunately, I have no idea why this is happening, since our only criteria for spam is if the comment has more than two links in it.  Most of these comments have no links in them, so I can only scratch my head in wonderment.

If you post a comment and it doesn’t appear immediately, it is likely caught in the spam filter since we do not censor anyone’s comments on LFV.

Please take a moment to save the LFV email address [ enm.lastfreevoice@gmail.com ] in your address book.  That way, if one of your comments doesn’t immediately appear, you can shoot me a quick email, and I will release it as soon as I receive your message.

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Voices from LFV Mailbag: Austrian Economist on the LP Convention

In Libertarian, Libertarian Convention, Libertarian Party-US, Libertarian Politics on May 31, 2008 at 6:43 pm

I received the below article, written by Austrian Economist, in the LFV inbox. Please note that the article does not necessarily reflect the opinions and views of LFV or its contributors.

___________________

The Poison of Purity: How Steve Kubby’s Loyalty Unraveled the Libertarian Party

(This is not meant to be anything more than an analysis of the LP presidential vote and what COULD have been, or perhaps what SHOULD have been.)

There was a point during the Libertarian Convention on Sunday at which all was not yet lost to Bob Barr and his Republican-lite sympathies.

You may have seen the eccentric pro-Mike Gravel signs encouraging delegates to “Fight Senator with Senator” or comparing Barr’s career accolades with those of Gravel. Signing the Patriot Act or ending the Draft? Defense of Marriage Act or releasing The Pentagon Papers? Hmmmm… Sufficed to say, it was amusing and poignant. Less amusing was proto-fascist and turd-for-hire Stephen Gordon ripping these signs down in the supposed “Free Speech Zone”.

On the first ballot, there were a few surprises. One: how Barr would seemingly flatline around 160-ish votes. Two: Mary Ruwart’s dedicated acolytes, pushing her into a similar vote range. And third, how Wayne Allyn Root had more support than many gave him credit for. But there was still plenty of room to wrangle support scattered throughout the delegation. Or so one would have thought.

Second round, Jingozian and Smith are out. Endorsement to Gravel from Jingozian, no major surprise following his introduction speech for Gravel. So then Kubby is low man on the totem poll. Here’s where things get interesting. Earlier that morning, I have it on good word that Kubby indicated to the Gravel campaign that he wanted the Senator to “be the standard bearer.” Very encouraging news. So where was this sentiment when he gave his concession speech & endorsement for Ruwart? In the end, Kubby chose friendship over principle, which is cute, but ultimately meaningless and irrelevant. THIS was the lynchpin moment of the election, the crux when Libertarians got it so damn wrong.

Let’s examine how things MAY have played out if Kubby made the principled decision of what he knew was best. The following scenario is narrated in the sequence of the convention voting. So, Kubby’s endorsement of Gravel not only rattles his own supporters, but as a long-time voice, icon, and martyr in the party, it bolsters the growing impression of Gravel as the most effective candidate.

Next round. Phillies is now in less of a quandary, and can contribute to the continual Gravel-anche of support. As a centrist himself, this is a major statement that Gravel is the glue to preserve and promote the Libertarian party. That would make THREE endorsements to Gravel, none to anyone else.

Suddenly, Gravel has leapfrogged Root in the votes, putting him in a position of leverage and influence. Root is amenable to Gravel, and recognizes what he brings to the party. Like everyone else, Root wants nothing to do with Barr. He strikes a deal and gentlemanly agreement with Gravel, yielding an enthusiastic endorsement. Gravel will serve as elder statesman of the LP, and Root a promising future voice (with good tutelage, not Barr’s indoctrination).

Given Root’s endorsement, Gravel is suddenly in 2nd place, either behind Ruwart or Barr. Were he behind Ruwart, those previously for Barr would recognize Gravel’s star-power and Libertarian pragmatism, thus shifting his way. Were he behind Barr, any purist would swing Gravel’s way, as would the 100-odd Root supporters. Regardless, he’d muscle out the final vote.

BOTTOM LINE—had he made the final ballot, Gravel would likely have succeeded in securing the nomination. Sadly, the LP fell prey to its worst vice, that of self-importance and self-indulgence. Delegates put themselves in the precarious situation of either nominating a shady Republican-goon or a lackluster, pedantic spokesperson who essentially condoned child pornography in writing. Let’s not forget the prominent article the morning of the vote that dealt with Ruwart and child pornography. Whether or not it came from the Barr camp, the LP would have been OBLITERATED the moment Ruwart received the nomination. Ultimately, could the choices have been any more stupid?

Personally, I voted None of the Above, because either vote would essentially destroy the LP, which it has now gleefully done to itself. Were a gun to my head, I’d probably have voted Barr, since scruples can be forgiven far more readily by the American people than a tolerance for pederasts. I wouldn’t like doing it, but hey, a gun’s to my head, so that’s already a violation of Libertarian principles (har har).

All that said, I congratulate the Libtards for failing to capitalize on the first (and potentially last) great opportunity to come your way. Whether that chance comes again, I know not. But I’d encourage you to aggressively court Jesse Ventura as your 2012 candidate. Otherwise, just go onto the NAMBLA listserves now and save yourselves the trouble.

Gravel was right all along… the LP could continue to be an irrelevant, half-a-percent party. Had they elected Ruwart, this would’ve been the case. At least with Barr, you’ll get national media, albeit inconsistent with your core values. In essence, you’re damned if you do, damned if you don’t, and screwed every which way but loose. The LP may now be remotely viable, but has compromised any integrity in order to do so.

There really isn’t much else that can be said. In a democracy, the voice of the people reigns supreme. Gravel readily recognized this is his most humble, accepting words following his defeat. Yet apparently, the democracy of the LP yields sleazy mustaches and utopian anarchists. Neither of which I enjoy, and neither of which I could bring myself to vote for.

Now we see that Kubby is calling for Libertarians to support Barr/Root. Coming from a guy who firestarted the convention with the statement that Barr had yet to “wash the blood from his hands” as a bellicose, anti-medical marijuana czar, that’s an abrupt change of heart. I don’t begrudge this at all… I like Kubby and hope that he can salvage what is now a party ripped asunder. Too bad he is playing smart politics after-the-fact, when he could have made the wise decision when it actually mattered.

Remember—you did this to yourselves, so shame on you all, and better luck next time. The road to irrelevance is a gleefully indulgent path, for sure! Gravel’s words might be well-advised next time around:

“We are Americans first, and Libertarians second.”

Sadly, some didn’t get that memo.

So, what happened at the LP of Massachusetts meeting?

In Libertarian on May 31, 2008 at 10:00 am

The following notice from George Phillies appears at http://www.lpmass.org/

What Do You Think? – Message From the Chair

Fellow Libertarians!

The Libertarian Party National Convention has nominated Bob Barr to be our Presidential candidate.

As state chair of LP of Massachusetts, I am now in a rather difficult position. Not ten years ago, Bob Barr tried to persuade the army to ban Wicca services from fields near Fort Hood. He also, I am told by Art Torrey, referred to Art’s religion as ‘bogus’.

I am in the same position as a State Chair who has a majority-African-American State Committee, and whose Presidential candidate was, ten years ago, a Grand Dragon of the KKK who spent his time trying to persuade storeowners not to rent out their storefronts to African-American churches.

Such a history is not something that you can talk your way out from.

What is your advice?

I have already been presented with a request for a Special State Convention as found in our State Party ByLaws to consult with the Party Membership.

The Libertarian Party of New Hampshire is already I gather having a special state convention to deal with the issue.

I of course welcome your advice on the matter. Please note that the State Party at the moment has planned to spend $11,250 to put a Presidential and US Senate candidate on the ballot.

Your state committee will be meeting this Thursday at 7:30 PM at my home, 48 Hancock Hill Drive, Worcester MA 01609. Members whose dues are current of the Libertarian Party of Massachusetts are welcome to attend. Please call in advance 508 754 1859 to tell me how much soda and iced tea to have on hand. Almost without exception, if you are such a person you received the last issue of the newsletter.

George Phillies
508 754 1859

Although I am not a Member whose dues are current of the Libertarian Party of Massachusetts, I am in the process of circulating a petition to put the LPMA presidential ticket, electors, and Senatorial candidate on the ballot.

It so happens that I was at this very meeting. In addition to the LPMA ballot access petition, prior to going to the LP National Convention in Denver, I was also petitioning to put the End the Income Tax and Marijuana Decrim ballot questions before the voters.

When I got back from Denver, I caught a ride from Carol McMahon, LPMA Political Facilitator, who was nice enough to let me crash a couple of nights on her couch (thanks, Carol!). Carol and I went up to Worcester, Mass, to get paid for our work on the two ballot questions, which had gathered sufficient signatures to no longer require our services while we were away in Denver.

Right after that came the aforementioned gathering at Dr. Phillies’ place of residence. Since Ms. McMahon was giving me a ride, and no one voiced any objections, I went ahead and participated in the LPMA State Committee meeting, other than for the purpose of voting, for which I was not eligible.

I took no notes, so the following is from memory; please forgive and correct any errors that may result.

All (or at the very least, almost all) who were gathered expressed great disappointment with the presidential ticket choice of the delegates at the national convention. There was a lengthy and contentious discussion as to what, if anything, the LPMA could or should do about it.

Contrary to this report at IPR, the vote against having a special state convention was far from unanimous, and came after a long and complicated discussion.

The report at IPR (which I have still not received a log-in for, BTW) was brough to my attention by the following comment:

George Phillies Says:

May 31, 2008 at 4:44 am edit

I shall first congratulate my good friend Jake Porter on his election to the Libertarian National Committee.

I shall now hijack the thread to note that Austin Cassidy’s new blog, whose web interface is so fractious I cannot log into it, has posted a report on a Massachusetts Libertarian meeting last night. The report is from someone who was not at the meeting. The report bears absolutely no semblance to reality, down to not getting right the name of the group that met.

The report’s author appears to be the same person who keeps circulating reports that I was attacked at the National Convention by an armed gunman.

If I had been contacted as State Chair, I would have been happy to offer corrections–make that ’suggest a total replacement for the report’. I wasn’t.

This moved up the schedule of my plan to issue this write-up of the LPMA State Committee meeting in Worcester.

Anyway, returning to our high Shakesperean drama:

Several of those assembled were also among the electors lsited on the petition. They all agreed to remain listed on the petition, although Mr. Torrey for one made it clear that in the highly unlikely event that he is actually a member of the College of Electors (that is, if Barr carries a plurality of Massachusetts votes for president), he would not feel bound to vote for Bob Barr. Carol was charged with finding out if the willingness to remain listed also held true of those electors not present.

Dr. Phillies made it clear that even if the State Committee voted to hold a Special State Convention, LP National would still draw up new nomination papers, with a new slate of electors loyal to Mr. Barr, and would quickly gather sufficient signatures to place Mr. Barr on the ballot here through the services of a local petition company. Furthermore, this new nomination paper might not include US Senate candidate Robert Underwood, and the LPMA would not have enough time and/or money to place any other presidential slate on the ballot. The possible threat of a lawsuit by the LNC Inc. against the individual members of the unincorporated LPMA State Committee was also broached.

Another option was discussed at length, to have a state convention for the purpose of such things as discussing a resolution of censure against the national ticket, but with the stipulation that the LPMA would not do anything to jeopardize the status of the petition which has already been circulating and has somewhere in the neighborhood of 5,000 or 6,000 signatures.

At the end, after said lengthy and contentious discussion and several rounds of voting on various motions, it was agreed that at this time the LPMA would not plan a formal special convention, but would instead plan an informal party at George’s house, possibly for the purpose of an extended two-minute hate against the dastardly Mr. Barr, or, perhaps alternatively, for soda, crumpets, and awed admiration of Professor Phillies’ impressive collection of board games.

In other news, one person who had made plans to circulate the petition before Mr. Barr’s nomination (the aforementioned Mr. Torrey) thought better of it, while the remaining three individual contractors all decided to go ahead and keep circulating, even though we all were also delegates who voted against Mr. Barr’s nomination. Not that it really matters, since the vast bulk of the signatures is being gathered by the previously referred to petition company in any case. Additionally, one or more donors to the petition drive cancelled their pledges, leaving the state party far shy of its previous commitment to the cost of the drive.

Press Release: Jake Porter elected as LNC Region 6 Alternate

In Libertarian on May 31, 2008 at 12:01 am

I would like to thank all of my supporters for their assistance in this endeavor. I look forward to helping build the party as I serve on the Libertarian National Committee as an Alternate to Region 6.


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 27, 2008
media@jakeporter.org

PORTER BECOMES REGION 6 ALTERNATE

Denver, CO –On Saturday, May 24th Jake Porter was elected to the Libertarian National Committee as an Alternate to Region 6 which includes the following states: Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wisconsin.

Porter, 20, had originally intended on running for the Libertarian National Committee as an At-Large Representative, but decided against doing so after St. Joseph Missouri City Councilman; Mike Bozarth nominated him for the Region 6 Alternate position.

Porter formerly served as Chief of Staff to the George Phillies 2008 Presidential campaign and was as an At-Large Representative to the Libertarian Party of Iowa.

For more information on Jake Porter’s campaign, see:

Barr, Barr-Root, Boor-Ratt, Borat!

In Libertarian on May 30, 2008 at 6:06 am

For any of you who speak Russian, this is how the ex-USSR press is covering the Barr nomination.

Жертва Бората (Borat’s victim)—about Barr’s candidacy


http://gazeta.ru/politics/election_usa_2008/2008/05/26_a_2735420.shtml

My dad emailed me the link the morning after Barr’s nomination. He is having a field day mocking me for being an LP member with this.

This is not to put me in the camp of those who oppose the party, or those like disinter who have precluded the possibility of supporting Barr.

On the other had, neither am I willing to give a ringing, and, as far as I can tell, unconditional endorsement of Barr-Root, a la Steve Kubby.

Although I am as yet far from certain, my initial inclination is to take a wait and see attitude, as described by Less Antman:

This is going to be a balancing act for radicals. We DO want to keep pressure on Barr so that he doesn’t feel emboldened to tell conservatives what they want to hear to draw votes from McCain.

We will have NO influence if we declare our unconditional refusal to vote for Barr, and even less if we let him know he doesn’t have to worry about our being in the LP after the election.

The proper approach for LP radicals is to constructively work for state and local candidates and ballot access and to focus on better internal education (or any internal education, which would be a good start). We can work for the party through November without having to specifically work for Barr-Root, and neither an unconditional commitment nor an unconditional rejection makes sense.

However, what practical incentive do Barr and Root have to listen to us? Surely, they can find more votes, and, even, more activists outside of traditionally hardcore radical LP ranks? If ever they had to compromise with us and make concessions, that time has passed now that they have safely secured the nomination. From now on, as anyone with practical political experience knows, their job is to move away from trying to please the party base, and towards reaching out to grab votes from the great undecided muddle. This is true of all parties.

In fact, if they were to pay me as a political consultant for advice on how to package their message with a view towards increasing their vote total in this election, I would be ripping off my client if I told them anything other than downplaying hardcore libertarian positions. That is, if their job as candidates is what most people define the job of candidates to be – getting the maximum number of votes possible in THIS election.

I happen to think that the job of the Libertarian Party should be somewhat different than that; but it is currently clear that those who agree with me on this have lost the fight, at least for the time being, to those who do not. Given this fact, is it possible to stay and fight and win this battle in the future, or is it time to cut my losses?

I’m not yet sure; stay tuned for an upcoming post: “I haven’t left the Libertarian Party, but has the Libertarian Party left me?”

Briefly speaking, I do not know the answer yet.

My support is not unconditional, and is based on actions rather than party loyalty. In other words, I will see what the campaign looks like. If I was into the idea of “my party no matter what,” I would still be a Democrat.

But it does not matter much either way – I will still collect signatures for Barr if he pays well enough (if I can collect signatures for Greens and Constitution Party, which I will, I can certainly collect signatures for the LP regardless of who the candidate is), and I will still most likely personally not be able to actually vote in November, regardless of my support level, for logistical reasons. Regardless of my support, I’m unlikely to have the financial means to make any donations to the campaign. In other words, very little changes based on how I feel about the campaign.

As far as my writing, I will continue to tell the truth the way I see it – I’ll say good things about the ticket when they do good, and bad things when they do bad, as I see it. If anyone at any point thinks that I am worth commissioning to write anything (hasn’t happened yet, and I have no indication that it ever will), he who pays the piper calls the tune.

I highly encourage the pro- and anti-Barr factions to engage in a bidding war for my services. And I expect that the offers will come pouring in just as soon as I hit “publish,” and not long after hell freezes over.

Reason eats some Cannolis

In Libertarian on May 30, 2008 at 4:53 am

“Paulie Cannoli,” a Kubby supporter and blogger who’d been unceremoniously de-credentialed by Third Party Watch, joked around and proposed that radicals make an end run around Barr. “Give him all the tokens,” Cannoli said. “Let him take the stage all by himself. Then get all the candidates back in here and tell C-SPAN!” Cannoli, who brandished the media credentials of former LP Executive Director Shane Cory (a man about as popular in this circle as Donald Rumsfeld), handed out Kubby buttons and asked for support: “A token for the tokin’ candidate!”


http://www.reason.com/news/show/126663.html

Texas Supreme Court orders polygamist children returned to parents

In Libertarian on May 29, 2008 at 9:48 pm

From MSNBC Breaking News:

The Texas Supreme Court ruled Thursday that children taken from a polygamist sect’s ranch should be returned to their parents, saying child welfare officials overstepped their authority.

The high court affirmed a decision by an appellate court last week, saying Child Protective Services failed to show an immediate danger to the more than 400 children swept up from the Yearning For Zion Ranch nearly two months ago.

“On the record before us, removal of the children was not warranted,” the justices said in their ruling issued in Austin.

You can read the entire MSNBC article here.

Previous LFV articles on the same topic:

Sickos: What’s a free market solution? by Nigel Watt

Another viewpoint on FLDS case by ElfNinosMom

Libertarian Debate on Google

In Libertarian on May 29, 2008 at 7:44 pm

The Barr dilemma: What’s a radical to do?

In Libertarian, Libertarian Party-US, Libertarian Politics on May 29, 2008 at 7:41 pm

Going into the convention, CIA asset and FairTaxer Bob Barr was unquestionably my last choice for president. I thought there was no way I could support his candidacy, and then the possibility of a Barr/Kubby ticket caused me to reconsider. Alas, it was not to be, and I left Denver with no intention of even voting for (much less supporting) the LP this presidential election.

I floated the idea of Libertarians for Baldwin at Independent Political Report. It was a non-starter. A few of my Rockwellian allies were/are amenable to the idea — with the same reservations I have — but most folks see the anti-gay, protectionist, anti-immigration Baldwin as at least slightly worse than Barr. To his credit, Baldwin is not a “former” CIA operative and he does take a strong stand against the Fed.

I’ve listened to and read the arguments posed by Less Antman, and I’m inclined to agree. I’m personally going to take a wait-and-see approach, and I suspect many of my fellow radicals (especially Rockwellians) are going to do the same. Word is that two very prominent Austrians may endorse Chuck Baldwin — which I can’t believe could happen without him restating his opposition to the free market — and that could change things for me.

I do not feel I’m under a moral obligation to support the Libertarian Party ticket, as some “reformers” — who I know would have stormed off it a real libertarian had won in Denver — want to claim. Although I don’t think the Barr campaign engaged in any type of shenanigans at the convention, I do believe they participated in a terribly unethical plot to smear Mary Ruwart prior to it — a plot involving abuse of power at LPHQ and the semi-covert conversion of a third-party news site into a propaganda mill for Barr. A fair and square loss would have been hard enough to swallow. But when Republican hate tactics are used to advance a Republican candidate within the LP, the pill’s a little bitterer. And so am I.

At LFV, I’ve read comments from a number of disgruntled radicals who feel the same way I do. The healing process is going to take some time. Maybe in a few days, a few weeks, or a few months, we’ll be ready to get behind Barr. Maybe not. Many of us and most of our candidates have taken bruises for the libertarian movement. Barr and Root are both unscathed. Let them leave some blood on the battle field, and I think plenty of on-the-fence radicals will come rushing to their aid. But if they play it safe and market themselves as “conservatives for medical marijuana,” don’t expect much from us.

LP’s Antiwar Resolution

In Libertarian on May 29, 2008 at 7:29 pm

Whereas the War in Iraq was sold to the American people based upon lies, exaggerations and half-truths,

Whereas the War in Iraq was prosecuted for the private interests of the Administration and its cronies and was not, and is not, in the national security interests of the United States,

We call for the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq as quickly as can be safely accomplished.

Hat tip Thomas Sipos

Thanks Everyone!

In Libertarian on May 29, 2008 at 2:06 am

This will be my final LFV post. I’m just real busy at the moment and I’d rather give up “my spot” to someone with more time to dedicate to posting here. Like to thank ENM & the other contributors here. The site is really taking off again.

If you are interested in posting here, shoot ENM an email. I’m sure she’ll consider you.

I’ll still be active in the comments area of the site, but I just don’t have much time to actively post. When I’m not leaving comments, I’ll be working my ass off, trying to get elected.

Again…thanks to everyone. Keep fighting the good fight. Oh yeah, if you missed tonight’s “LFV Live”, make sure you catch the archive. It was pretty sweet.

Humble request of Barr/Root backers

In Libertarian Party-US, Libertarian Politics on May 28, 2008 at 8:27 pm

I’ve been hired to write an article about the convention, but I don’t have any pictures of Barr or Root. If you snapped some pics of decent quality (i.e. not from your cell phone) and wouldn’t mind them being used, please let me know.

Secondly, the article I’m writing is about the monetary policy of the candidates. I’ve heard nothing about monetary policy from Barr or Root — have they made any statements? I don’t want to mischaracterize their positions as “pro-Fed” if they are in fact not.

Thank you

Christine Smith: ‘The LP is dead, I’m outta here’

In Libertarian on May 28, 2008 at 6:59 pm

Christine Smith – the longshot LP presidential candidate who received only six delegate votes, and who blasted Barr at the convention on live television – has announced that she is leaving the “dead” Libertarian Party.

Here is an excerpt:

For those of you who have asked: I am leaving the LP. I think the party is a waste of time and resources for anyone who actually wishes to join with others whose priority is freedom (some advances are made on the local level which I think are very good-but as a whole I think the LP is unworthy of the participation of anyone with integrity, ethics, and character–that is my conclusion after witnessing what occurred at the National LP Convention this weekend.) Though some true libertarians will choose to remain in the LP, from the emails and phone calls I have received, I believe many will leave. Each true libertarian must make the choice that is right for him or her; my choice is to fight the battle for liberty in other ways. As for me, I want no part of an organization that could put Barr and Root as the 2008 Presidential/VP candidates. Their choice to do so is, in my opinion, a tragic mistake for the LP. The LP now stands for nothing different than the two major parties – it is a meaningless party as it has become what it always condemned; it no longer offers an alternative choice or voice for liberty at the highest level as should be represented in its presidential candidate. The resulting damage to the party as a means to advance liberty and to attract liberty-minded individuals has been done. No true libertarian would support (or defend) the selection of Bob Barr. (For those who choose to remain in the LP to try and repair it, it will take many years to even return to the place the party was a few days ago.) The hope and enormous potential the LP, as “The Party of Principle,” had in 2008 was enormous – now that has been destroyed.

LFV Live!: Final LP Convention wrap-up

In Libertarian, Libertarian Convention on May 28, 2008 at 6:11 pm

LFV Live! will be on tonight at 7:30 EST. We will be discussing the convention.

I’d like to have some of our contributors who attended the convention as guests. Anybody up for that?

UPDATE: Paulie Cannoli, GE Smith, Chris Bennett, Brian Miller and Jeff Wartman will be on the show, so we will have viewpoints from all sides of the current controversy.

The call-in number is (646)478-4638, if anyone wants to call in with comments or questions. The show tonight will be one hour long, running from 7:30 to 8:30.

If there are any further updates, I will post them here.

Remember Our Enemy

In George Bush, Humor, Libertarian, Libertarian Party-US, Libertarian Politics on May 28, 2008 at 3:56 pm

From: BobBarrMoneyBomb.com

Root/Kubby could have been ‘unity ticket’

In Libertarian, Libertarian Politics, Steve Kubby on May 27, 2008 at 8:45 pm

Yes, a lot of Mary Ruwart backers are quite bitter. Do you imagine it would be any different from the other side, had she won? I was reviewing the round-by-round results earlier today, and the thought struck me: Some pragmatist (not me, I would take a bullet for Mary) should have organized the vast center and engineered a compromise. If Root could have pulled off enough votes to leap over Mary and into second place, then the Mary backers could have been made the kingmakers one insider predicted they would be. We would have chosen Root, of course, but we could have gotten his support for a Kubby VP nomination. Thus, both Barr and Ruwart would be off the ticket, and neither side would have “won.” There would still be hard feelings, but Barr and Mary backers could each take solace in the fact that the other lost, and both would find the Root/Kubby ticket equally agreeable.

G.E. (no longer) live in Denver: Posthumous report

In Libertarian Party-US on May 27, 2008 at 7:33 pm

First, I want to offer my apologies to Elfninosmom for not being able to provide more coverage while in Denver.

I left off Thursday night after the Libertarians for Justice event. The next morning, a strange thing happened: I got put to work.

Friday

I manned the Mary Ruwart booth for much of the day. This is when I first got to really meet Mary, and she shocked me by asking me to giver her a nominating speech. I was afraid to say yes, but I couldn’t say no. I would be horribly nervous and dreading the idea of it for the next 48 hours.

I had lunch with Tom Knapp. He bought. He told me about an apparent attack on George Phillies the night before — I mean a real attack — by an armed gunman. I never found out anything more about this, and inexplicably, I forgot to ask George when I saw him.

A little later, Andy and I ran into the WWE wrestler, Kane. Andy talked him up. He was very knowledgeable about wrestling, and Kane was impressed. Andy asked Kane which candidate he supported, and Kane pointed his thumb at the Ruwart booth. “You support Mary Ruwart?” Andy asked for clarification. Kane shook his head affirmatively. I later told this to Lee Wrights and we made several efforts to build a bridge with Kane without being too pushy. The day of the voting, Kane gave me a big thumbs up after my speech and I noticed he was wearing a Mary Ruwart button.

But back to Friday: This was the night of the big “unofficial, all-inclusive” debate. I have to say I would have much preferred a “mostly inclusive” format, rather than all-inclusive. Candidates without even two supporters don’t need to be heard. This includes both the crazy (Imperato and Alden Link), as well as the sane and principled candidates with no support whatsoever (Jim Burns).

If there were any doubts (and I don’t think there were), Imperato firmly established himself as batshit crazy during the debate. Wow. Paulie was sitting next to me and cracking jokes all night long. The whole audience snickered and outright laughed every time Imperato would go into long multi-lingual rants — “Must be he bought Dondero’s book,” Paulie said — or bragged of his connections (knows George W. Bush very well, partner with bin-Laden, has adopted nephews and nieces in Abu Dabai who call him “Uncle Dammy”). Imperato would also redirect every financial, fiscal, or monetary issue to his theory of Jacob and Esau, whereby Arabs were now jealous of the Jewish money mastery.

Alden Link: What a waste of time. Totally not libertarian in the least. Energy socialist. Monetary moron. Literally supported the “military industrial complex” in both name and spirit. Bigoted against Muslims. For the war on terror. Paulie said, “New rumor: Alden Link is Eric Dondero’s grandfather.”

Jon Finan was the only candidate (other than Barr) not in attendance. I did see him on Sunday on the convention floor. I don’t know why he didn’t show at this debate, but I’m glad he didn’t.

Read the rest of this entry »

Voices from LFV Mailbag: Barr pledges to repeal DOMA

In Libertarian on May 27, 2008 at 7:25 pm

LFV received a link to the following YouTube video from Brian Miller.

Barr/Root Have My Support

In Activism, Libertarian Party-US, Libertarian Politics, Politics, Wayne Allen Root on May 27, 2008 at 6:29 pm

In private over the past two days, I’ve been interacting with other Libertarians who are upset about our ticket. Not all “radicals” either (and for the record, I hate labels). Anyways, I have no clue what they are going to do, but I do know what I plan to do.

In November, I will cast my vote for Bob Barr.

Will I help raise money for the campaign? No

Will I send donations? No

Will I put a graphic up on my campaign site & stand on a corner and hold a rally sign on election day? Maybe, if they send me a sign.

Will I go to any meet-ups? Sure, why not. I enjoy talking to folks.

In other words, my “involvement” with this campaign will be pretty limited. Bottom line is, I’m a Libertarian Party member and I will cast my vote for the Libertarian Party ticket in November.

Voices from YouTube: Video coverage of convention

In Libertarian on May 27, 2008 at 6:28 pm

Someone on YouTube commented that Christine Smith looks crazy.  She really does, when the video is up close like that.

I have no idea what Imperato is talking about in this video.  The man doesn’t make a lot of sense.