Steve G.

A message from Wayne Allyn Root

In Libertarian on November 27, 2008 at 7:23 pm

Just after the presidential election, I sent a long e-mail message to Wayne Allyn Root with some suggestions for how he could prepare for a Libertarian presidential run in 2012. I had exchanged a few friendly e-mails with Root during the campaign, and he always replied quickly, so when I did not hear back after a couple of weeks, I wrote him a brief message asking for his reaction. This is his reply, in full, without edits:

As far as your suggestions i get 200+ emails per day…and dozens of calls…they all blur….all i remember is that you had good suggestions…I agreed with them…but to be honest…what they were…I do not remember anymore. My life is that busy nowadays.
As far as “likely candidates for LP”… I’m now the face of LP on FOX News…I offer the opportunity of a lifetime for LP. all other LP potential candidates offer “back to the past” (LP is invisible and meaningless).
Wayne Allyn Root
2008 Libertarian Vice Presidential Nominee

  1. I don’t think he knows that being the face of the LP on FOX News is not a good thing.

    He really doesn’t know how big of a fool he made of himself this year, does he?

  2. Wayne Allyn Root is so arrogant that it’s comical. In fact, he reminds me of the character “Andy” on The Office.

    Those who watch that show likely know exactly what I mean when I say that, too. The similarities are uncanny, including the incessant bragging about his alma mater.

    Despite his delusional belief that he is the chosen savior of the libertarian movement, WAR’s political “career”, such as it was, is over in the LP. He may be eventually elected to some internal office, but Presidential candidate? No way. He had his shot as VP and repeatedly embarrassed both himself and the LP, most significantly with his very weird personal obsession with Barack Obama, and his ridiculous Reason interview wherein it became pretty clear that he is a racist. Ugh.

    The only positive thing I have to say about WAR is that he was …. well, no, I can’t think of even one positive thing to say about the guy. LOL

    Thanks for sharing his email, Peter. I needed the laughs.

  3. I’m SILLL waiting for him to call me back on that used Fiat.

    ENM hits it on the head. The guy is slated to speak for 30 minutes on the undercard next Saturday in San Diego about who knows what, just before the main event of the “Discipline of The Keaton” (bring your floggers, one and all!).

    Nevermind that the other undercard event of the budget is going to steal the show…

  4. Wayne Allyn Root…..’face of the LP on FOX News’

    The face of the LP on Amerca’s Finest News Source (The Onion) is NOT Mister Root, but none other than: (drum-roll)

    When Mister Root becomes relevant, The Onion will notice (and respond accordingly).

  5. I invite critics of Root to post a link to a video of a stump speech by any of the other 2008 LP contenders that was better than what Root regularly delivered, e.g. at

    I’m not holding my breath.

  6. Obviously, there never has been a LP candidate with the dynamic personality of W.A.R., not to mention the teeth. He exudes confidence and never lets an audience forget how truly wonderful he is. I can see him going all the way to the top of the New Libertarian Party.

    Sometimes he gets his facts wrong, flip flops, and comes off as a libertine conservative, but none of that matters when you consider the millions of votes he garnered from his media and gambling connections. The LP will probably increase membership by tenfold as a result of W.A.R. and his sensational ability to raise money and compete head on with major party politicians.

    If I was in the timeshare business, I would not hesitate to hire W.A.R. as a salesman, if he would work on a commission only basis.

  7. Video searches readily yield campaign videos by Mary Ruwart, Steve Kubby, Michael Jingozian, Mike Gravel, George Phillies, Christine Smith, and others. I guess Tom not giving us a link to any of them means he concedes that Root’s stump speech is better.

  8. No, Tom ignored Brian’s dumb invitation and kept the argument on his terms instead.

    IIRC from Denver, give Root PMS and you get Smith. 🙂

    I challenge Root to take a mild sedative and then give a speech to make his enthusiasm seem more genuine and palatable and less phony like a used car salesman sans the plaid jacket.

    All a “good” stump speech does is indicate that one can give a speech, and gives no indication on substance of content. As exhibit #1, I give you President-elect Barack Obama.

  9. My criteria for a “better” stump speech include both substance of content and content of substance (in case you think those are somehow different). Root consistently nails what should be our primary theme: we’re the only choice that’s not Left and not Right.

    Again: show me a speech from any other LP candidate that does a better job of advocating for the Libertarian alternative.

    If you could, you’d have hit me with the YouTube urls by now. You can’t, and so you won’t even try.

    It’s interesting that the grownup radicals — Nolan, Kubby, Knapp, Moulton, etc. — can admit that Root presents the Libertarian case well. By contrast, the haters have psyches so brittle that there can be nothing redeeming about the Bad Guys. The haters just know that the Bad Guys are phony/evil, and this knowledge excuses the haters from having to think about why a well-intentioned reasonable libertarian might disagree with them on some aspect of strategy or ideology. Hating is just so much easier than thinking. Thinking is not cool, but the harder you hate, the cooler you are.

  10. I don’t know what’s funnier, Brian, the idea that Root is a great speaker, or that Mr. Moulton is a “radical.”

    Funny story — I was next to Bob Barr, prior to his announcement for his candidacy, at the conservative leadership conference in Reno NV last year.

    Barr was savaging Root’s “hokey” speaking style and I am inclined to agree (one of the few things I agree with Barr about).

    Further, this constant effort to recruit Republicans and brag about being the “face of the LP” on Republican talk TV strikes me as strategically ridiculous. The Republican Party’s demographic support is collapsing — it is largely the party of aging fundamentalists.

    And most of the candidates who have caused this party grief, dramatically overpromising and underdelivering (remember Wayne’s “we’re gonna raise $40 million to $50 million” schtick?) have been GOP drop-outs.

    Really, Wayne got his chance to “prove” his ability to grow the LP’s support in the last campaign, and he didn’t bring in significant new support or significant new cash. Wasn’t it Einstein who defined insanity as trying the same thing over and over and hoping for different results?!?

  11. Insanity is citing the same Einstein quote over and over and hoping it will someday finally win an argument. Root’s vice-presidential campaign probably earned more media for the LP than did all previous LP veeps combined. I can only hope we have as good a VP nominee in 2012.

    You need to adjust the font in your browser, because my word “better” is apparently showing up on your screen as “great”. I can only think of one LP presidential contender who didn’t regularly make me wince with a twinge of embarrassment during his or her public speaking, and that was Ed Clark. Clark was the only “great” speaker I’ve heard among our presidential contenders, and that leaves a wide range of speaking ability among the rest. I contend that Root is at the high end of that range, and I’m still waiting for you or anyone else to show us a video of LP presidential contender’s speech better than what Root regularly gave us.

    Moulton is indeed a grownup and not an Angrytarian, so his radical credentials will be questioned by anyone who measures radicalness by the intensity with which one hates. However, he is still a hardcore Austrian anarchist, for those still seized by the quaint idea that radicalness has something to do with principles.

    I’m in the market for concrete pre-nomination promises made by Barr or Root about the success of their campaign. If you think you’ve got one, please provide a citation.

    If you don’t like who you think Root is recruiting into the LP, then maybe you can try to get Root or Phillies or whoever on shows with a non-Republican audience. To the extent that LP “strategy” even affects the other parties, it seems to me that the time to destroy the GOP is when it is weakest and imploding. However, feel free to try to wean leftists away from their new messiah right when people are selling his beatific visage on dinner plates. Good luck with that.

  12. YAWN.

    Holtz keeps trying to frame the argument in his own terms and labels.

    Sorry, I’m not buying. He can rant to his favorite audience: himself.

    Root comes across as a huckster, and his unfulfilled promises bear that out. The fact that he was unable to secure the nomination and in fact had to cut a deal to even make the ticket bears that out.

    We’re selling liberty, not snake oil, remember?

  13. I’ve never been a fan of Jingozian, Ruwart, or Smith online Youtube videos. Kubby didn’t have many, but what ones he did were pretty good.

    Although most of Gravel’s speeches were during the Democratic Primaries, you can’t deny his ability.

  14. ENM said she “can’t think of even one positive thing to say about the guy”. In response I said Root’s speeches were better than his opponents’, gave an example of one, and invited Root critics to show us a better one from his opponents. All we’ve gotten since then are feeble excuses for fleeing from my challenge, and impotent vouching that Root is not a good speaker — oh, and Seebeck’s self-refuting daily insistence that he doesn’t pay attention to me. LOL.

    I’m still waiting for a quote of an unfulfilled pre-nomination “promise” by Root or Barr. Don’t got one? Didn’t think so.

    Root was written off as DOA by Kubby spokesman Tom Knapp, but he rolled over Kubby in both San Diego and in Denver. Before Barr’s entry, Ruwart was the only hope of radicals and Angrytarians to deny Root the nomination. It was extremely impressive that newcomer Root scored 27% on his final ballot compared to Barr’s 36%, given that Barr was a famous former congressman who had been in the LP longer, had been an LNC member, and had received far more media attention for his nomination bid. Root won the VP race with almost the same 51% share with which Barr beat Ruwart, and in Barr’s absence Root may very well have been the choice of those same Barr voters. (I bet you can’t name a single last-ballot Barr voter who says he would have voted for Ruwart over Root.) NatCon delegates are notorious for ignoring ticket-top guidance on what VP to pick,, and Root probably won the VP spot in spite of Barr’s endorsement, rather than because of it. (Barr’s endorsement certainly solidified my vote for Kubby as an attempt to balance the ticket.)

    If in May 2007 you had asked LP insiders to handicap a race among Barr Ruwart Kubby Gravel and Root, none of them would have predicted Root to do nearly as well as he did — especially without spending basically any of his alleged millions. The haters can keep underestimating Root at their own risk, as it only will give him crucial momentum when he again starts blowing past what they claim are their low expectations for him.

    Update: Mike Theodore finally attempts to address my challenge. Kubby is indeed the best of our 2008 field on the radio, but at a podium or in front of a camera he’s like a different person e.g. . Yikes! Gravel is indeed the best of our 2008 field if you equate libertarianism with angry anti-establishmentarianism. Me, I find Gravel’s hyperbolic rage to be much more embarrassing than Root’s studied enthusiasm. I guess it all comes down to whether the emotional core of one’s libertarianism is fundamentally negative or positive.

  15. on style, I would suggest to Root that he dial it back a bit. He is prone to making grandiose pronouncements, like his plan to win the WH in a few election cycles. That really hurts his credibility in my book. I think he’s become less of a conservative and more L, as his foreign policy views were far too hawkish as little as a year ago for my tastes. And his REASON interview about Obama was a rookie error.

    My “ideal” candidate would have Root’s enthusiasm with Barr’s sober grasp of the issues, and ability to frame them. Gary Johnson, perhaps?

    I actually preferred Gravel as VP, only for credible balance reasons. I agree with Brian that Gravel was often shrill.

    Of course, people have to be themselves, but we certainly saw how Phillies became MUCH better at projecting on the stump.

    I hope Root continues to be a player, and thinks through some of his positions more. I’d like to see him run for mayor of Las Vegas…he could be interesting in such a race.

  16. Ya, Kubby’s videos weren’t the best, that’s one of the reasons people wrote him off before the Convention. But his speaking performance at the convention blew him to the top, under Ruwart and Barr.
    I was impressed by it, even from here in Illinois. When someone called and told me the ticket would be Barr/Kubby, I was thrilled and ready to fight. After getting home from fishing and seeing Barr/Root…well, I reacted just as everyone did. I skipped this election.

  17. Brian, you seem to be operating under the mistaken assumption that I have nothing better to do than dig up old videos, LOL.

    Normally I would play along, but right now I just don’t have time to do that. I will however take a moment to tell you what I really think of Wayne Allyn Root, and why I have nothing good to say about him.

    I stand by my statement that I don’t have anything good to say about the guy. He has racist tendencies, he’s arrogant, he’s a shameless name-dropper, he reminds me of a fast-talking used car salesman, and I just generally find his personality to be absolutely insufferable. I wouldn’t buy a used car from Wayne Allyn Root, and I wouldn’t vote for Wayne Allyn Root even if he were running unopposed for dog catcher. Seriously. There is not one elected office in this country for which I would support Wayne Allyn Root as a candidate.

    The simple truth of the matter is that I do not trust him at all. This is a guy who repeatedly suggested that Barack Obama didn’t attend Columbia, just because he didn’t know Obama from campus, which of course made the LP look ridiculous since there is no way the Democrats didn’t check the guy out first. Did Root ever bother to call his alma mater, to ask them if Obama was a student? No, apparently not.

    His obsessive jealousy of Obama is very weird and embarrassing, to say the least, especially when he went off on his tangent about betting a million bucks over Obama’s grades, whether Obama got into Columbia and Harvard Law due to affirmative action, etc. As if all that’s not bad enough, this is a guy also involved in an industry where he is called a “scamdicapper”. There is nothing about Wayne Allyn Root which tells me I should trust him, and lots of red flags warning me not to do so.

    In light of all that, plus other reasons I have not enumerated due to time constraints, he is simply not important enough for me to stop what I am doing to look at old videos. He got the VP nomination, he lost the election, and now he thinks he is entitled to a second bite at the apple. There really is nothing more to discuss about him, despite Root’s apparent belief to the contrary.

    Since it is so important to you though, perhaps you should dig up videos of his opponents who you think are worse at making speeches. I will probably even agree with you, but that still doesn’t mean I have anything good to say about Root, given how bad his opponents were at making speeches. LOL

  18. “In light of all that, plus other reasons I have not enumerated due to time constraints, he is simply not important enough for me to stop what I am doing to look at old videos.”

    Don’t bother, your not missing much. When I came into the LP, I watched the videos of all the front runners at the time, him included. They confirm all you think of him.

  19. feel free to try to wean leftists away from their new messiah

    You’re right, Brian.

    Clearly, the growth opportunity for the LP is in the geriatric religious right — the only constituency who have not yet abandoned the GOP in the last two election cycles.

    His obsessive jealousy of Obama is very weird and embarrassing, to say the least

    And even worse, his constant references to Obama’s race make him look like a *racist* weirdo.

    Look, I was willing to give him the benefit of the doubt, but it’s clear he’s a turkey.

    PS — I’d be willing to bet that Outright’s folks have gotten the LP more media impressions and attention in multipartisan media than Root (or LPHQ), but that’s another issue for another day.

  20. ENM, you could write an even longer — and more accurate — screed about Michael Badnarik’s, um, challenges. Liberty Magazine did so back in 2004. And yet I know of no evidence that these challenges impacted Badnarik’s formidable ability to make the LP pitch in the 2004 campaign. Similarly, Root’s issues didn’t put any kind of clear dent in the unprecedented amount of outreach he was able to do from the VP spot. Tom Knapp’s predictions of the media’s reaction to Root went completely unfulfilled.

    With one possible exception, all of the top-tier candidates in 2008 had screed-worthy issues — and yet none of those problems would have fatally undermined their outreach to the general public, just as was they didn’t with Barr and Root. (The exception was my first-ballot choice Phillies, whose only “issue” was his intra-party rancorousness — something that would never get any play in a general campaign.)

    Root certainly has his share of flaws and made his share of mistakes, as Bob pointed out, but I can’t credit your screed as much more than just selective sniping at an ideological opponent — the same sort of stuff I criticized in the “Ruwart supports pedophilia” trolls.

  21. In the midst of the biggest economic catastrophe of our generation, when the GOP has abandoned all pretense of defending free markets, and in the wake of an unprecedented tsunami in the freedom movement that had financial-sector reform as a major focus, then any outreach that emphasizes economic liberty should be dismissed as pandering to “the geriatric religious right”. Real insightful stuff, that. Nevertheless, what I like about Root is that he attacks the GOP far more strenously than Barr does. He recognizes that now is the time to drive a stake through the GOP’s heart.

    Google News hits on “wayne root” OR “wayne allyn root” libertarian: 68
    Google News hits on “outright libertarian”: 0

  22. Angrytarians… hee hee.

    I’m trying to decide if I like that name better than radical absolutist hater. I think I do.

    But, yo B, I ain’t be hatin’ the playa, I be hatin’ the game – know what I sayin’, B?

    That Root dude be all up in my face talkin (bleep) – he just another lyin’ mother (bleep) cracker ass (bleep) with a bad (bleep) hairdo and a tired ass mother (bleep) necktie. That mother (bleep) oughta go be Joe Liberman’s (bleep) lawn boy. Just keepin’ it real, B. Word.

    Anyway, I’ve changed my mind about hiring Root as a timeshare salesman. I want Holtz selling my timeshare burial plots. He’s a rad dude.

  23. Google search for Brian Holtz: 11,600

    Google search for Bubbles the Clown: 12,500

  24. Nevertheless, what I like about Root is that he attacks the GOP far more strenously than Barr does.

    From Wayne’s blog:

    The media tried so hard to create the impression of Palin as being unqualified and “out of her league,” that they made her the big underdog. Palin more than rose to the occasion. What the media fails to understand is that America loves an underdog. The more the media belittles Palin, the more America (especially middle America) will rise to her defense. Third, the intellectual elite of this country thinks far too much of themselves. The pompous, arrogant “Beltway Insiders” crowd thinks that no moose-hunting, hockey mom and beauty queen contestant from the University of Idaho can ever debate them on a national stage.

    Palin lacks the U.S. Senate pedigree, law degree, or the D.C. Beltway credentials of Biden, but she has Reaganesque-like charm, charisma and middle American values.

    More than any other politician in the country, I understand why McCain took the gamble of a lifetime to choose Sarah Palin. She is a female me!


    Wow, that’s some drubbing he’s delivering the GOP.

    Although I do sorta see some validity in his assertion that he’s the LP’s Sarah Palin — not necessarily in the same vein as he’d like to see it, however.

  25. Google News hits on “wayne root” OR “wayne allyn root” libertarian: 68
    Google News hits on “outright libertarian”

    It helps if you get the plurals right, Bri. It also helps if you check non-Google indexed sources (like the New York Times magazine, the Advocate, GCN, etc., etc., etc.)

    I know we often forget this, but most people don’t get their sustenance from the web.

  26. Brian M: Clearly, the growth opportunity for the LP is in the geriatric religious right — the only constituency who have not yet abandoned the GOP in the last two election cycles.

    Me: Have the Log Cabin Republicans disbanded? Did all the people who used to vote R become Ds, or did they cross over in disgust over the Iraq War, profligate spending, and Rove-ian wedge-issue dirty tricks? Are all people who are religious and R voters necessarily “religious right” and geriatric?

    I’d suggest the answers to those questions are No, except the cross over part.

    Obviously Root and Barr both were appealling to Rs a bit more than, say, unaffiliated counter-culture people or bi-coastal urban Bohemians. That was wise of them on a lot of levels, for the GOP’s support has shrunk in 06 and 08 to its base.

    Those who USED TO vote R — especially the educated, coastal, suburban R voters — I’d suggest is our largest prospect list, if you will. Of course there are other lists, too.

    I would agree that Root’s Palin praise was unwise, on balance. But I personally do think that a large segment of prospective Ls are going to tend include a more-populist-sounding tone that Ron Paul seems to appeal to in part.

    He wasn’t — I don’t think — targeting “geriatric religious rightists.” The guy is pro-choice, pro-gambling, and Jewish from NY. He hardly fits the profile.

  27. Oh, yes, I would say I was pleased that Root didn’t praise Palin for the “First Dude’s” having been associated with the secessionist AK Independence Party! The paleo set lept on that one, to my chagrin.

  28. No, “Bri”, it doesn’t make a difference if you add an “s” to “libertarian” in the searches I mentioned. We in the web search business call that “stemming”. Also, Google News DOES show results from both the NY Times Sunday magazine and from The Advocate. Google News archive search (which goes back more than the default 30 days) finds an Outright mention in The Advocate, but finds seven times as many mentions of Root in a political context as it does of the Outright Libs. So it still looks like you would lose that nigh-unverifiable bet about Outright getting more impressions and attention than Root. Talk is cheap; facts aren’t.

    Here’s Root on the GOP:

    “The Republican Party became the party of greed. They sold out from the taxpayers to the lobbyists and the lawyers and the big corporations, big oil, big pharmaceuticals, big farms, defense contractors, and Stevens of Alaska is just one single great example of what’s happened.”

    “Both of [the major parties] are all wrong. Only the Libertarian Party allows you to be both Right and Left — to be both fiscally Right and socially tolerant — more freedom, less government, more rights for the individual, less government intrusion. Only the Libertarian Party believes that government’s job is to protect all of us standing here today from others — robbers, criminals, rapists, murderers, foreign invaders — but not to protect us from ourselves. And ironically, the protection we all need most in this year 2008, I’m sorry to say, is from government. Think about the list I’m about to rattle off: Hurricane Katrina, the war in Iraq, Walter Reed hospital, warrantless wiretaps…”

    As I said, Root attacks the GOP far more strenuously than Barr does. In the entire campaign, I never heard Barr attack the GOP this harshly, or lay out the LP brand distinction this clearly. But Brian Miller doesn’t like Root’s crush on Palin, so I guess I was wrong about whether Root’s rhetoric was better than Barr’s…

  29. “the geriatric religious right” ….Brian Holtz

    Hey Dude, I take personal offense to this derogatory tirade, and insist on making a number of points.

    Prior to 1991, I had numerous failures in convincing anyone of the follies of instutional, corporate gambling (casinoes) while using outrageously complex 2 dimensional arguments coming from ‘Social Science’ (you know, Religion & Philosopy). In 1991 I started working with SOC (self-organized criticallity). I had two (2) straight years of failures in understanding SOC or applying SOC to things like:
    1) base materials of construction (roads etc.)
    2) fish populations
    3) bird populations
    4) snow accumulation and avalanche theory
    5) economic theory (like ponzi Soc. Sec. schemes or fiat-money systems)

    Most of my failures came in the way of PC (premature criticality) of SOC, but one thing that I learned out of it was that creeps like Wayne Allyn Root are not helping the system, but inducing PC (premature criticality) which should be intuitively obvious to anyone using a simple four (4) dimensional model of SOC.

    Since 1991, I not longer oppose WAR for two (2) dimensional reasons or morality & religion but four (4) dimensions of nature.

    Now then MR. Holtz, I’ll stop yawning when Wayne Allyn Root starts talking about his ‘grade point average’ from an important (relevant) school like Caltech or MIT. These goof-ball ‘social-science’ schools like Columbia, Harvard & Yale just don’t cut it.

  30. Um, I’ll just point out that your opening quote is mis-attributed, and assume that the rest of your post is some kind of cascade error. 🙂

  31. No, “Bri”, it doesn’t make a difference if you add an “s” to “libertarian” in the searches I mentioned. We in the web search business call that “stemming”.

    I guess that’s a valid argument if you’re going to claim that Google indexes every media appearance, including the Signorile show, New York Times magazine, EPGN, GCN, etc.

    Now I know you’re a Yahoo and not a Googler (which makes your reliance on Google that much more confusing to me), but Google is a great index for newswires — not so much for news features.

    So “we in the media and marketing business” apparently can teach those of you in the search business a thing or two.

    Lesson one: don’t use your biggest competitor’s technology as evidence of your own argument. 😉

    Root attacks the GOP far more strenuously than Barr does.

    I love how you preserve your high standards, Bri. 😉

    He’s also a better speaker than George W. Bush, and dresses better than Jim Davidson.

    Let’s knight him as our permanent candidate!

  32. Brian Holtz: “If in May 2007 you had asked LP insiders to handicap a race among Barr Ruwart Kubby Gravel and Root, none of them would have predicted Root to do nearly as well as he did


    In my editorial of May 10th, I wrote that Barr, Root, and Ruwart were the three front runners:

    Page 2, col 3, para 2

    I suppose now you’ll say that you didn’t mean me, because I’m not an “insider,” or find some other weasel words to say anything other than: “I, Brian Holtz, was wrong.”

  33. One of the “great media P.R. stories” that Wayne Allyn Root brought the LP (IOW, how me makes the LP look ridiculous with his Obama obsession: )

    And here’s an inside look at Root’s “boiler room operation,” from one of his former employees reporting on the sleazy way in which Root made his money off of the rubes who used his “sport betting advice line”:

    Sadly, I always knew Root had a shot at the LP nomination. Some people love a great talker, and don’t much mind a little jingoism on the side.

  34. Quoth Brian Holtz:

    “It’s interesting that the grownup radicals — Nolan, Kubby, Knapp, Moulton, etc. — can admit that Root presents the Libertarian case well.”

    On the contrary. I’ve seen Root speak live several times, and on television several times. EVERY time, I’ve considered his presentation an embarrassment and detriment to the party.

    I suppose that if I tried really hard, I could think of someone who would hypothetically be a worse representative for the LP, but offhand the only one I can think of who has been so in practice on any scale at all has been Jeffrey Diket at the 2004 Atlanta convention, and even that would be a close call.

    As for a better stump speech, I have no URLs handy, but feel free to cite ANY speech by ANY of the other 2008 nomination candidates (including Christine Smith’s post-elimination rant), and I’m confident that I’ll evaluate it as better than anything I’ve ever heard from Root.

  35. The hyperbolic opinion of the already-announced 2012 candidate is duly noted. 🙂 Aren’t you the same Tom Knapp who told us that Ron Paul would seek the LP nomination, that the media would crucify Root for what you claim are his business scandals, and (a week before Denver) that “right now it looks to me like we [the Kubby campaign] can beat Barr” whose campaign is “on life support”? We have to take these campaign-mode pronouncements with the correct tonnage of salt, just as when after the nomination Kubby graciously called Root a “sincere and effective spokesman for reigning in the government, restoring our constitutional rights, allowing states to determine their own laws regarding drugs and for the full legalization of medical marijuana. […] I now believe Barr and Root are the strongest pro-freedom ticket we’ve ever had”.

    Thomas, I wrote “May 2007”, not “May 2008.” So you, Thomas Sipos, were wrong — in thinking that you had contradicted my assertion. Are you going to admit that, or are you going to “weasel” out of using the formula you recommended to me? (You’re definitely an insider, by the way.)

    Brian, I don’t know what fraction of articles Google indexes from its sources. You don’t either. You don’t have enough intellectual honesty to admit it, but you were flatly wrong to suggest that plurals made a difference in the searches I did, just as you were wrong to say Google doesn’t include the NYT sunday magazine or The Advocate in its index. I’ve presented my evidence that Root’s libertarian message reached a wider audience than Outright’s. You’ve claimed otherwise, but have presented zero evidence for your claim. Oh, and thanks for retracting your objection to my claim that Root attacks the GOP far more strenuously than Barr does. Next time, just object to what I actually write, rather than sharing with us your tediously sarcastic responses to the voices in your head.

  36. Well, I predicted Root as one of the front runners in 2007 as well, though I have no paper trail on that. Back then, I thought that Kubby, Root, and Smith were the front runners.

    I also thought that Karen Kwiatkowski had a real shot.

    I may be the odd one out on this, but until Ruwart announced, I didn’t really know who she was.

    All I knew about her was that she spoke at the 2004 convention, and that she wrote some New Agey book. Her 2004 talk sounded very touchy-feely, New Agey to me.

    I’d seen her picture, and plugs of her book, but I never paid it any heed. I had no idea she had a following.

    In fact, until he announced, I didn’t really know who Barr was. Some ex-Congressman who’d joined the LP. But really, Barr who?

    So in May 2007, Ruwart and Barr weren’t on my radar, though I was already upset and worried about Root’s pro-war statements (my radar tends to be tuned to the war issue).

  37. Brian,

    You write:

    “The hyperbolic opinion of the already-announced 2012 candidate is duly noted. :-)”

    I concur with your implied opinion that any statements I make regarding Root should be viewed in light of my own candidacy. Hold me to that concurrence.

    “Aren’t you the same Tom Knapp who told us that Ron Paul would seek the LP nomination”

    My recollection is that I express that as a highly probable likelihood, not as a flat prediction — but my recollection could be faulty.

    “that the media would crucify Root for what you claim are his business scandals”

    That prediction remains untested, as it was contingent upon his receiving the LP’s presidential nomination.

    “and (a week before Denver) that ‘right now it looks to me like we [the Kubby campaign] can beat Barr’ whose campaign is ‘on life support’?”

    The “we” in that quote is clearly not “the Kubby campaign.” Here’s the source.

    My mistake there was in misunderestimating Root. I didn’t expect him to do as well as he did in the presidential contest (and was embarrassed on behalf of the party that he did so well), and thus I didn’t expect him to be able to close a deal with Barr.

    On the ballot that eliminated Root, Ruwart outpolled Barr. It was Root’s third-place finish that put him in a power-broker position. Root wasn’t able to deliver his whole vote to Barr (you asked if someone could name a single Barr delegate who wouldn’t have gone to Root v. Ruwart had Barr been eliminated, and I can — Doug Craig of Georgia, whom I believe has publicly so stated).

    I thought we could beat Barr — and we damn near did. I held that if we could beat Barr, we could beat Root … and I remain convinced that that was the case.

    I was not particularly surprised by Barr’s victory for the nomination — I knew it would be a close-run thing. I thought we could win but I never considered it a given.

    Root’s VP nomination was the real heartbreaker. That could have arguably been prevented had I run a better floor operation, had Barr stood mute instead of endorsing Root, or had Daniel Williams not inexplicably chosen to stab the party in the back when faced with elimination himself. All things considered, I’m willing to take the blame on that one.

  38. Yes, Tom, your May comment that “we can beat Barr” was indeed some kind of royal radical “we”. I scanned your article too fast to check for the possibility that you, a member of the Kubby camp, were attempting to speak for your opponent Ruwart. I, Brian Holtz, was wrong. 🙂

    Your estimate of Ron Paul taking the nomination was 95% at one point, and may have even been raised to 98% IIRC. I’d call 20:1 odds (or 50:1 odds) a prediction, but you don’t have to if you don’t want to. 🙂

    You apparently are trying to say that Doug Craig was a last-ballot Barr voter who preferred Ruwart over Root. If that’s true, I suspect he’s an extremely rare species. Root elicits a studied disdain from his detractors, put nothing like the pure venom that Barr gets from his haters.

  39. I concur in Knapp’s comment regarding Williams. I was standing right there when Williams questioned whether Kubby’s health was up to a long campaign, which was a double insult as A) Kubby had already been on a long campaign for the Presidential nomination, and B) He had done IIRC a rather vigorous (busy) campaign for Governor here in CA in the past. I can’t explain Williams except for maybe ignorance and spite, but I remember what he said on the floor before he went up and kissed up to Root on the podium.

    But I don’t concur with Knapp taking the blame there either. Consider that there was a mad scramble to get delegates back on the floor who had walked off, plus the fact that they left in the first place means there is plenty of blame to go around there from the chaos.

  40. Brian,

    Your mistake is in believing that I ever considered Ruwart an “opponent.”

    That’s an understandable mistake. Although I very specifically treated Mary’s candidacy in a positive manner, I also went out of my way to avoid having it publicly mentioned that I was working for both campaigns (with the knowledge and support of both candidates).

    For the record:

    By the time Dr. Ruwart entered the race, we knew that Kubby’s chances were slim, that those chances were almost entirely reliant on a very strong debate performance in Denver, and that even a strong performance would likely not have a Badnarik-like effect in a field of more than three reasonably serious candidates.

    So, both Kubby and I strongly encouraged Ruwart to enter the race, and neither of us considered her an “opponent.” Rather, we considered her campaign more in the nature of a second front versus a set of opponents in common. We hoped to see a Kubby/Ruwart or Ruwart/Kubby ticket come out of the convention, and while I had a personal preference as to order, it wasn’t a strong enough preference to matter.

  41. Um, I’ll just point out that your opening quote is mis-attributed… Brian Holtz

    Oops! I got so pissed at the termgeriatric christian right that I got in too much of hurry in cranking out the text.

    Well whoever started that geriatric etc. stuff, I say Thank you!

    I zipped off on a great fun hike just to cool down and to look for nifty public parks that might fit for fun experiments in sand piles. I haven’t felt this great since 1991.

    I think it was the term ‘geriatric’ that fits the description
    1) ‘the straw that broke the camels back’, or
    2) the ‘grain of sand that initiated the phenomenon’.

    Looking at the current stuff on the internet today on SOC, the terminology has changed alot in 14 years and I might have to have some fun recreating a premature catastrophic collapse with siesmic troubles just as a little tribute to WAR and the casino-gambling folks who love ‘win/lose’ bussiness ventures.

    I’m gonna have lots of four dimensional fun with this.

  42. I’ve made many comments about W.A.R., with about 99% of them negative. Mind you, I have never attacked him personally, unless calling him a “used car salesman” and a “liar” is considered to be personal attacks (both are documentable assertions).

    However, for all his faults and (perceived good qualities) as a potential LP presidential candidate for 2012, I will go back to W.A.R.’s promise that he would deliver “millions” of gamers and gamblers votes to the LP ticket.

    Aaron Russo (RIP Aaron) promised that he could deliver many Hollywood supporters in 2004, but none of that alleged support showed up in Atlanta at the LP convention. This was one of the reasons that Russo was not nominated for the LP presidential ticket. NOTE: For the record, despite Mr. Russo’s several flaws, I considered and still consider his libertarian activism throughout his life, to be very commendable . . I can’t say the same for W.A.R.)

    The same type of promise by W.A.R., the promised “gamers” support but not delivered is reason enough (lord knows, there are MANY, MANY other reasons) to reject W.A.R. for the LP nomination in 2012.

  43. Brian H, Badnarik is ancient history as far as I’m concerned. What I remember off the top of my head is that he didn’t have a driver’s license and seemed to have some serious IRS problems (though I may be thinking of someone else with regard to the latter). I probably know more about Allen Hacker, than I know about Michael Badnarik.

    At that time I was not really studying LP candidates, as much as merely being a casual observer. In fact, I don’t recall making any public statements about Badnarik while he was running. In 2004, I was far too busy to pay close attention to the Badnarik campaign, as I was a widowed mother trying to raise a teenage son on my own. I didn’t get involved in making public statements about libertarian politics until around 2006, when Elf was finally grown and I had more free time.

    So no, I’m not going to write a screed on Badnarik, since I prefer to leave such projects to those who actively studied the campaign and therefore are far more qualified to write about it. Furthermore, to be quite honest, I don’t have the time to do the research, nor am I really even that interested in the subject matter since it was years ago. You can write a screed from your viewpoint if you wish though, and I’ll be more than happy to read it and consider your views.

    You can believe that I am sniping about Root if you wish, but I gave you my personal opinion and I didn’t just pull the reasons for that opinion out of the air. My complaints and concerns are well documented. I will however admit that what offends and annoys me may not offend or annoy you, but that does not mean that it offends or annoys me any less.

    With all sincere respect to you, this appears to be one of those subjects where we probably should just agree to disagree, since neither is likely to change our mind. I don’t mind discussing it as I have time to check back on this thread, but I’m not going to argue about it or engage in any challenges about it, simply because I don’t have time to do that, nor do I have the inclination. I formulated my opinion about Mr. Root by actively observing his campaign from the time he announced, and I’m simply not going to change my opinion about him at this juncture.

    I still don’t have time to look for old videos pursuant to your challenge, and you still haven’t posted any pursuant to my response. When you do get around to doing that, let me know, and I’ll be more than happy to look at them and tell you if I think they are better or worse than Root at making stump speeches. Again, chances are that I will agree with you that Root is better at stump speeches than most LP candidates, but at the same time I again still don’t think that’s saying much.

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