Steve G.

The Importance of Strategy

In Libertarian on June 9, 2008 at 6:28 pm

posted at
by Ayn R Key

At the 2008 Libertarian Party convention, the Reform Caucus beat the Libertarian Caucus. Mainstream libertarians are not represented on the 2008 Libertarian Party presidential ticket. It would have been a good move on the part of the Reform Caucus to sponsor a unity ticket with a prominent member of the Libertarian Caucus in the Vice Presidential Candidate slot. Failing to think strategically the Reform Caucus wanted their victory over the Libertarian Caucus to be thorough. Now the result is a weakened candidate. There is much discontent within Libertarian Party ranks over this ticket.

Bob Barr is campaigning for votes outside the Libertarian Party. What he is neglecting is that he should be campaigning for votes inside the Libertarian Party as well. The Reform Caucus has, by choosing victory over strategy, alienated a large portion of the Libertarian Party. The reaction from the candidate himself has been “I’m the candidate so you will vote for me.” The reaction from the Reform Caucus has been to accuse everyone who hasn’t warmly and happily embraced the ticket of being sore losers, wanting to destroy the party, et cetera. The truth is that by placing victory at the convention over strategy, the Reform Caucus is more guilty of trying to fracture the party than the disenfranchised Libertarian Caucus is.

Barr does need to spend time advertising to the base. He is neglecting that duty, relying on “you have to vote for me” to get the votes from the base. Libertarians are notorious for rejecting calls for “you have to vote for me” as a substantial portion of libertarians are converts from major parties and those converts realized that they don’t have to vote for the candidate of the party. It doesn’t matter that the hated other party will win if the candidate for the party is just as bad. That’s not to say that Barr is as bad as Obama or McCain – he most certainly is not as bad as them. The question resolves to is he good enough to get the vote of those who will actually analyze a candidate instead of showing blind party loyalty.

Do you agree with this analysis of the facts?

  1. Barr has been saying far more libertarian things (and doing so on national television) since receiving the nomination than he did before receiving the nomination.

    So what’s the problem, again?

    Also, when has Barr ever said or implied “I’m the candidate so you will vote for me”? Please be specific. From where I sit as someone who didn’t support Barr for the nomination, he has sounded far more libertarian than I had expected.

  2. Actually Kubby would have won if the Libertarian caucus had thier act together. I voted for kubby because I like him and I thought it would balance the ticket.The Reform people showed the others how it was done in the political arena. I wished it was different but relize this is political party not a debate club if we want to win we have to prepare to win weather it is at our convention or in a presidential election. i have seen the same things happen in the Ron Paul stae GOP convention. The people who show up and have thier act together and know the rules win. BTW I did vote for Barr Had I not been from Georgia he my not have been my first choice but they won because the had thier act together and Barr has done a good job since the nomonation. no one would have gotten the press that he has gotten No one.

  3. Barr has been saying far more libertarian things

    Big deal. He could say that the pigs fly and barfers would believe it.

    Saying and doing are two completely different things.

  4. So what’s the problem, again?

    Umm, let’s see…

    Barf is guilty of the following:

    voted FOR the patriot act
    voted FOR illegal wars of aggression
    voted AGAINST freedom of religion
    was a drug war prosecutor

    And those are just the highlights.

    Whatever happened to personal responsibility and the party that espoused it? Are you saying criminals shouldn’t be held responsible for their actions? You might as well run George Bush.

  5. “Whatever happened to personal responsibility . . . ?”

    Whatever happened to the possibility that people can learn? change formerly held opinions?

    Seems to me over the course of his career in Congress, Bob Barr became more, not less Libertarian.

    Without Barr, no sunset provisions in the so called “Patriot” act.

    Now he is calling for its repeal. Seems to me that someone who once voted for it, has more, not less, credibility now calling for its repeal.

    Reagan was once a Democrat. Do you think his Presidency was characterized by the political opinions he held as a younger man?

    Frankly I’m glad I’m not held to a standard of only beliving the things I used to believe; only capable of doing the things I’ve done in the past. Seems to me Congressman Barr likewise has grown, learned and has much to offer.

    “Are you saying criminals shouldn’t be held responsible for their actions? ”

    Are you saying Congressman Barr is a “criminal?”

    Please. That’s at least a borderline criminal thing to say, called slander or libel.

    And, in case you wonder, yes, I do think you should be held responsible for your actions here.


  6. Joe,

    I think disinter meant criminal against the non-initiation of force principle, not against statutory laws. His point was that the government laws Barr wrote and voted for as a Congressman initiated force, thus making him a criminal before the (higher) law.

    It’s a legitimate point, and does not contradict your point about the ability of people to grow and change.

    I’ve certainly grown and changed; that still leaves true the fact that I have a criminal past and could be put in jail for some things I have done in the past even if I have changed since then.

  7. Whatever happened to the possibility that people can learn? change formerly held opinions?

    So if I hack off your mother’s head and then say “I am sorry, I have learned that this was bad”, you will be okay with the pigs letting me go free?

    Reagan was once a Democrat.

    So was Barf.

    Are you saying Congressman Barr is a “criminal?”

    Most definitely. At the very minimum, he violated his oath of office.

  8. That’s at least a borderline criminal thing to say, called slander or libel.

    Yea, okay. You and Hacker can sue me anytime. I’m waiting.

  9. I support Barr because I believe his policies are right for the country and he’s the only choice. Everyone has mad mistakes in the past. But, when compared to the other to communist I don’t see another option.

  10. It would have been better to have a balanced ticket. However remember Root took the podium and announced himself the Veep. Someone can correct me, but I don’t think Root had discussed this with Barr. The way Barr looked on CSPAN when Root came up to him after the “POW” “POW” speech, didn’t look to me like he was behind the Root speech. Naturally he appreciated it and returned the favor in the veepstakes…

    I believe in an eliest shadow government, (unlike most people here,) the CIA is used to further these peoples plans. The CIA is also a ruthless bunch who for over half a century have murdered people all over the world. In too many cases, innocent people. I also was an occasional listener of Barr’s radio show a few years back and knew he was only a libertarian leaning conservative. Then when the article about his views on foreign policy in South America and specificly Columbia was placed on his POTUS site for everyone to see, I knew there was no way I could support him. However, I do hope he continues to improve and keeps getting the LP name before the public (without much hardcore rightwing rhetoric attached to it). I will certainly support down ticket LP candidates and truly believe, if they will run hard, they could set records this year as this country is facing a possible DISASTER. The people will listen this time, they understand we are in trouble.

    However, I don’t plan to spend the next five months of my life filled with hate for Bob Barr. No, I plan to overlook the stone throwers of intolerance in the CP and positively support Dr. Chuck BaldWIN. I was a Paul grassroot activist from Feb.’07. until March ’08. I can agree with BaldWIN on at least 80% of the issues (my personal criteria) so I can help him and sleep no matter the outcome. I plan to use all the HATE I have against B.O. and McSame they DESERVE it…

  11. Jerry S writes
    “I don’t think Root had discussed this with Barr”

    He did. I spoke at the time to witnesses to the conversation.

  12. I also understand Barr and Root talked but also understand the Veep was offered to Ruwart first.

  13. “offered to Ruwart”

    That’s apparently correct. A negotiation was carried live on television. I have a tape.

  14. Barr himself has never said “I am the candidate so you will vote for me.” His supporters have, and his supporters are very good at tarnishing my attempts to build support for him. Every time they tell me that I am bad when I raise certain unaddressed questions about Barr’s positions, it causes me to lose what little support I have generated.

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