Steve G.

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.

  1. I had a very strange dream last night. Basically Bob Barr won the election and we were all waiting on his victory speech. But when he came out, he was dressed like Benito Mussolini. Everyone stopped clapping and just stared at him.

    Then I woke up. I swear this was a real dream.

  2. 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.

    I’ll give you a six-pack of Pabst Blue Ribbon and a bag of Doritos to write that Barr is your personal hero and one handsome dude. Dead serious.

    That aside, this was a very good post.

  3. Thanks Steve. Doritos and Pabst have negative value for me, but other than that it was a very good comment🙂

  4. I believe that portions of the Libertarian Party platform are mainstream. Being against the War in Iraq, in favor of legalizing medical marijuana, and cutting taxes are all mainstream. While we think that it is not nearly enough, these are views that a majority of Americans agree with, even if those they elect vote and legislate otherwise.

  5. Dumbdero admits Viguerie is a Neocon:

    “I was around in the 1980s. I remember the NeoCons from back then: Richard Viguerie, Howard Phillips, Paul Weyrich, Pat Robertson, all referred to themselves as “NeoCons.”

    It’s incredibly ironic that now in 2008 some of these guys no longer use the word.”

    http://thirdpartywatch.com/2008/05/29/what-a-three-party-system-might-look-like-on-election-day/#comment-624157

  6. I’ll give you a six-pack of Pabst Blue Ribbon and a bag of Doritos to write that Barr is your personal hero and one handsome dude. Dead serious.

    I’d pay you to write an anti-Barr article, but you have already gone to the dark side.

  7. 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.

    Why would I support someone that voted for the Patriot Act and illegal wars of aggression? Someone that worked for the CIA for almost 10 years, someone that put countless people in jail for victim-less crimes.

    Whatever happened to individual responsibility? “I’m sorry” isn’t enough.

  8. Dumbdero admits Viguerie is a Neocon:

    “I was around in the 1980s. I remember the NeoCons from back then: Richard Viguerie, Howard Phillips, Paul Weyrich, Pat Robertson, all referred to themselves as “NeoCons.”

    I believe that’s because of something called “wet brain syndrome.”

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wet_brain

    I was around in the 80s too, and those guys called themselves the New Right – not neocons. Neocons were folks like Irving Kristol, Jeanne Kirkpatrick, John Podhoretz, and Elliott Abrams.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neocons

    I’d pay you to write an anti-Barr article, but you have already gone to the dark side.

    No, I haven’t. I’m on the fence.

    Why would I support someone that voted for the Patriot Act and illegal wars of aggression? Someone that worked for the CIA for almost 10 years, someone that put countless people in jail for victim-less crimes.

    Whatever happened to individual responsibility? “I’m sorry” isn’t enough.

    So, theoretically speaking, no one that participated in the regime can be redeemed?

    I’ve done some evil things too (I don’t feel like detailing them). I guess I should never try to change and do anything good?

    And this isn’t positing that Barr has really changed, or not – I see indicators in both the positive and negative directions.

  9. 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 most cases I would agree with this, but to the extent that the Barr campaign hopes to leverage the Ron Paul r3VOLution, they can’t just write off the radicals. Multi-million-dollar moneybombs and self-organizing rallies of hundreds of supporter just aren’t going to happen for a campaign that the grassroots aren’t inspired by. If they run to the center, they’ll find themselves alone.

    I think they understand this. Around 10 pm Sunday night, Barr came down to the Capitol Bar by himself in jeans, lit his big cigar, and sat down at a table populated by Ernie Hancock, Barry Hess and a bunch of other radicals, half of whom were still wearing their no-Barr buttons. He could have stayed up in his victory suite and soaked in the adulation of his supporters, but he sat there with us radicals for at least a half hour while Ernie told what he needed to do.🙂 I’ve also had a couple of Barr’s staffers reach out and let me know that they really want to hear from the activists about what they need from the campaign in order to get on board.

    I voted for Ruwart on all 6 presidential ballots and Kubby on however many VP ballots there were. But if the Barr team is willing to try to work with us, I’m willing to give it a try as well.

  10. So, theoretically speaking, no one that participated in the regime can be redeemed?

    Not until they have paid their dues. Barr has not paid his dues. He should be in prison for violating his oath of office at the very minimum.

    If I murdered your cousin then said “Oh, I have change, I am sorry, I will never do that again”, then I should go free?

  11. I’ve done some evil things too (I don’t feel like detailing them). I guess I should never try to change and do anything good?

    Certainly you should. If you violated somone’s property rights, though, you should have to compensate the victim first. You Barfers just want him to get away with his crimes because you believe every lie he tells you.

  12. I’d pay disinter to consolidate his thoughts into a coherent post, and stop blasting two to three dozen comments randomly per thread.

  13. Poor Perkins…

  14. but to the extent that the Barr campaign hopes to leverage the Ron Paul r3VOLution, they can’t just write off the radicals.

    Especially considering Ron Paul’s message was FAR more radical than Barf’s.

  15. Especially considering Ron Paul’s message was FAR more radical than Barf’s.

    I’m not so sure about that. I am a huge Ron Paul fan, contributed money and hours to his campaign (I ran around NYC taping one of the first r3VOLution videos on youtube way back in April ’07), and I think what his campaign was clearly the most important thing to happen to the libertarian movement in our lifetimes. However… there’s no getting around the fact that Ron Paul campaigned on closed borders, tried to play it both ways on gay rights, abortion, and the drug war, depending on who he was talking to, and by invoking a states-rights answer when the media tried to pin him down on those issues. Paul also defended all his earmarks for his district as “returning some money to the taxpayers”, which could be used to rationalize just about any government program.

    None of that makes Ron Paul a bad guy by any means, just an imperfect libertarian. The big difference between Paul and Barr, IMO, is that Paul has a consistent track record in Congress that he can point to, while Barr has to repudiate much of his. But where both of them are today is pretty much in the same ballpark.

  16. I think they understand this. Around 10 pm Sunday night, Barr came down to the Capitol Bar by himself in jeans, lit his big cigar, and sat down at a table populated by Ernie Hancock, Barry Hess and a bunch of other radicals, half of whom were still wearing their no-Barr buttons. He could have stayed up in his victory suite and soaked in the adulation of his supporters, but he sat there with us radicals for at least a half hour while Ernie told what he needed to do.🙂 I’ve also had a couple of Barr’s staffers reach out and let me know that they really want to hear from the activists about what they need from the campaign in order to get on board.

    Funny, nobody called me. Or returned my calls, for that matter. And they know me fairly well.

  17. Why would I support someone that voted for the Patriot Act and illegal wars of aggression?

    Funny that you should ask me to convince you of something of which I remain unconvinced myself.

    If you violated somone’s property rights, though, you should have to compensate the victim first.

    Sorry, I’ll never earn enough money to do that, unless something drastic happens. Probably not even then; some things, no amount of money can ever truly make right, and I’ve done some of them. I guess I’ll have to stop trying to do anything good for the rest of my life, then.

    Once again: I don’t know if Barr is in the same boat or not. I can make a case either way.

    You Barfers

    I’m glad you know what side I’m on before I do. Although I must admit your take on it pushes me a bit in that direction, it will take more than that for me to decide.

    just want him to get away with his crimes

    I said that? Where? When?

    because you believe every lie he tells you.

    I do? News to me.

  18. Barfers in general Paulie. I guess you are still “on the fence”, so you haven’t completely barfed yet.

  19. Right. And putting in quotes and making a prediction (“yet”) certainly helps.

  20. The final results of the LP convention’s 6th presidential ballot shows Barr with 51.6% of the votes cast, and Ruwart with 44.0%, NOTA with 4.1% and Write-ins with 0.3%. If you consider that there were 652 credentialed delegates, Barr got 49.7% of the delegate votes.

    Barr has the ba*ls to say that the Libertarian Party is unified behind his campaign? This is akin to Bill Clinton saying in 1996, with 49% of he popular vote, that he had a mandate.

    W.A.R. got 51% of the votes cast on the 2nd and final VP ballot, to Kubby’s 45.7%. Mary Ruwart received one write in vote. If you consider the credentialed delegates, W.A.R. got 44.3% of them.

    I am not alone in not supporting this ticket. As a matter of fact, I was in the majority with my fellow LP delegates at the convention who did NOT support Barr or W.A.R.

  21. Jim Lesczynski Says:
    May 30, 2008 at 3:26 pm

    I voted for Ruwart on all 6 presidential ballots and Kubby on however many VP ballots there were. But if the Barr team is willing to try to work with us, I’m willing to give it a try as well.

    I did the same Jim, though I don’t remember talking about it in Denver.

    I am going to “work with” the Barr campaign simply because the Barr campaign would work with “us”. If recent happenings are any indication, (Barr has already repudiated his repudiation of his support for both DOMA and the Patriot Act to some degree) Barr is going to say whatever will get him the most votes, within a framework of a somewhat conservative/freedom leaning message. This however, isn’t nearly good enough for me to support the ticket, even if he is willing to work with “us”.

    Add in the comments which W.A.R. made on Glenn Beck just before the convention, supporting Gulf War I in 1991, and you have a two facer on foreign “non-interventionism”. This isn’t even taking into consideration W.A.R. longstanding neo-con support for the war on terror and fighting “islamo-fascists” and “they hate us for our freedoms”.

    In my opinion, these candidates can repudiate all they want to the Libertarian delegates in Denver, but repudiating their repudiations is just what I expected would happen.

  22. I said, “I am going to “work with” the Barr campaign simply because the Barr campaign would work with “us”.” I meant to say,

    “I am NOT going to “work with” the Barr campaign simply because the Barr campaign would work with “us”.” Sorry.

  23. I’m not so sure about that.

    Hmm, let’s see:

    Barf voted FOR the patriot act, Paul against.
    Barf voted FOR illegal war, Paul voted against.
    Barf was a drug warrior that imprisoned countless people for victim-less crimes, Paul was not.
    etc, etc, etc…

  24. Yet Mike Nelson (“disinter”) welcomed Barr into the LP and congratulated the Libertarian Party for naming Barr as a member of the LNC.

    So we’re to believe that Barr’s conversion isn’t real — yet Nelson’s flip-flopping on Barr is completely rational and justifiable. Or something.

  25. Yet Mike Nelson (”disinter”) welcomed Barr into the LP and congratulated the Libertarian Party for naming Barr as a member of the LNC.

    That’s kind of a reoccurring theme. I like Barry Hess, and sent some support to his campaign when he ran for governor a few years back. However, a group of us were laughing our asses off during his Ruwart nomination speech about “takeovers”… because it took one of us with a laptop all of 10 seconds to pull up a photo of a smiling Hess with his arm around Barr, welcoming him to the LNC.

  26. Yeah. Ironically enough, Mr. Nelson (and a number of others) told me I was hysterical and moronic for having the same concerns at Barr’s joining-time that they now have — after Barr’s self-proclaimed evolution on those issues moving him more towards a Libertarian orientation.

    I’m all for pointed criticism based on the facts, but a big piece of principle is consistency — and too many people wrapping themselves in purist garb have been tremendously selective about consistency.

  27. So much for ignoring the base. These guys are going to blow the election by acting like radicals. Just today, Barr called for the removal of American troops from Japan and Europe. What a loser!

    The fundamental challenge facing American foreign policy is not whether the U.S. talks to repressive regimes. The question, insists Barr, “is whether America will adopt a more restrained foreign policy, focused on protecting the core interests of the United States and the American people.”

    “What reason is there to defend Europe, which has a larger population and economy than America,” he asked. “There is no need for an American military garrison in Japan, which enjoys the world’s second biggest economy, six decades after the end of World War II.” And certainly it is “not the American purpose to occupy failed states, take sides in conflicts among rival religious factions, and attempt to impose liberal democracy on other societies,” he added.

    The American people deserve a far-reaching debate over foreign policy, said Barr. “For too long the U.S. has been coddling what amount to international welfare queens while playing global nanny to the Third World. We must develop a defense policy that defends America instead of everyone else.”

  28. Is it so strange that someone would want Barr in the party, and yet be firmly against him running for our highest office? I’m perfectly happy to welcome liberal and conservative leaning libertarians into our party, but that doesn’t mean I would want Mike Gravel to head our ticket. I still don’t trust Barr to run an honestly libertarian campaign, but I’m open to seeing how it all goes. His past as a Washington insider and a socially conservative zealot frighten me. His current stances on monetary issues, his support of the “fair” tax, his iffy stance on DOMA and drugs, and his views on intellectual property are difficult to get past. Nevertheless, I’m proud to have him in the party, I just didn’t want him to become the standard-bearer of the LP.

  29. The LP is now occupied by the conservative movement. This has given rise to new factions within the LP:

    RESISTANCE LIBERTARIANS – Principle before Party – Don’t cooperate with the occupation slate. Give them an empty bag, hunker down, and poise to reclaim the party after the election.

    VITCHY LIBERTARIANS – Party before Principle – Rally behind the
    occupation slate for the sake of party unity.

  30. Yet Mike Nelson (”disinter”) welcomed Barr into the LP and congratulated the Libertarian Party for naming Barr as a member of the LNC.

    Barf joining the LP and Barf as our Presidential candidate are two, entirely, different things. I know your retard caucus morons are slow and all, but this one isn’t rocket science.

  31. told me I was hysterical and moronic for having the same concerns at Barr’s joining-time that they now have

    Your and your Outright Liber-Nazi circle jerk were screaming that he was going to exterminate all the fags. Yes, you were hysterical and moronic, to say the very least. And no, that is not the same concern I have…. at all.

  32. Barf joining the LP and Barf as our Presidential candidate are two, entirely, different things.

    Nice spin, but you also congratulated Barr for accepting one of the highest offices in the LP — the Libertarian National Committee.

    You can scream and shriek and act antisocial all you like, but the reality is that this is less about Bob Barr and his positions, and more about your need to be stridently contrary. That’s neither “radical” nor “pragmatic” — it places you in a prominent leadership in the “Bore Caucus.”

  33. Your and your Outright Liber-Nazi circle jerk were screaming that he was going to exterminate all the fags

    Nonsense. I wasn’t even in a leadership position — you were, but you didn’t do your job.

    I simply indicated a concern about Barr’s position, and as anyone who wants to check the Outright list can attest, marriage was only one of the issues. Of course, I did expect that someone like you who was in the leadership of a gay group would consider Barr’s position on gay rights — but then again, being useful and proactive was never your forte, was it?

  34. Nice spin, but you also congratulated Barr for accepting one of the highest offices in the LP — the Libertarian National Committee.

    Barf joining the LP and Barf as our Presidential candidate are two, entirely, different things. I know you retard caucus morons are slow and all, but this one isn’t rocket science.

  35. Barr didn’t just “join the LP.”

    Barr joined the Libertarian National Committee.

    Do try to keep up, cupcake!

  36. Oh dear lord Ms. Miller has to be the dumbest fag I have ever encountered. Nevermind, hunni.

  37. The LP is now occupied by the conservative movement. This has given rise to new factions within the LP:

    RESISTANCE LIBERTARIANS – Principle before Party – Don’t cooperate with the occupation slate. Give them an empty bag, hunker down, and poise to reclaim the party after the election.

    VITCHY LIBERTARIANS – Party before Principle – Rally behind the occupation slate for the sake of party unity.

  38. paulie wrote: Funny, nobody called me. Or returned my calls, for that matter. And they know me fairly well.

    That’s because Andy had your phone.

  39. “So much for ignoring the base. These guys are going to blow the election by acting like radicals. Just today, Barr called for the removal of American troops from Japan and Europe. What a loser!”

    Since you’re so eager to attack Barr when he actually takes a libertarian position, I suppose you have a good reason to keep troops in Europe and Japan?

  40. Still waiting for evidence of how, when and where I went over to the dark side. Somehow I missed it.

  41. Is it so strange that someone would want Barr in the party, and yet be firmly against him running for our highest office?

    Exactly. I should also point out that, while I also welcomed Barr into the LP, that was before I knew that – just to take a few of many examples – he supports the fraudulent “fair tax,” still supports Plan Colombia, still runs a Republican Leadership PAC, and so on. I did have some concerns about him being on the LNC, but was willing to give him the benefit of the doubt, and those concerns did not rise nearly to the degree that I do with him running for president.

    I’m perfectly happy to welcome liberal and conservative leaning libertarians into our party, but that doesn’t mean I would want Mike Gravel to head our ticket.

    In retrospect, I almost wish we had picked Gravel – I’m less concerned with the issues he deviates from plumb line libertarianism on, especially in this election cycle, than those Barr appears to deviate on.

    The biggest deal breaker with both is their mutual support of the fraudulent “fair” tax, which I consider a very dangerous trojan horse for America. I also believe that, due to the nature of government, it is likely to be the ONLY “libertarian” issue which the ruling class will “steal” to head us off at the pass. It will be OUR fault – and no, I do not believe they will repeal the income tax; in the real world we will get both.

    I still don’t trust Barr to run an honestly libertarian campaign, but I’m open to seeing how it all goes. His past as a Washington insider and a socially conservative zealot frighten me. His current stances on monetary issues, his support of the “fair” tax, his iffy stance on DOMA and drugs, and his views on intellectual property are difficult to get past.

    Exactly.


    Nevertheless, I’m proud to have him in the party, I just didn’t want him to become the standard-bearer of the LP.

    Too late. The more pertinent question is whether *I* still belong in the party. Article on that issue percolating in my head.

  42. you also congratulated Barr for accepting one of the highest offices in the LP — the Libertarian National Committee.

    Some people make the case that the LNC does not necessarily have to be made up of ideological libertarians – that its function is primarily managerial. I disagree, but it’s at least a defensible position.

    That’s a far cry from running for president on our ticket. That will define the party in most people’s minds for years to come.

  43. That’s because Andy had your phone.

    LOL. Not very likely, but just in case: please do call again. Email works too.

  44. Oh dear lord Ms. Miller has to be the dumbest fag I have ever encountered. Nevermind, hunni.

    Yeah, disinter… tell me some more about why Barr isn’t a real libertarian because of his supposed lack of respect for the gay community. Ten extra points if you can do it without calling me a “fag” also.

  45. Barr won a majority by 10 votes.
    Root won a majority by 3 votes.

    Out of 627 on the Prez ballot, and less on the VP balloting.

    United, my ass.

  46. <>

    And Rachel asks . . .

    What constitutes “paying his dues”? Just curious about what you think he ought to do/ have done . . .

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: