Steve G.

Posts Tagged ‘Campaign for Liberty’

Anthony Gregory on Peaceful Dissent and Government Crackdowns

In Activism, Big Brother, Censorship, Constitutional Rights, First Amendment, History, Libertarian, Police State, US Government on March 19, 2009 at 7:57 pm

Over at Campaign for Liberty yesterday, Anthony Gregory released an article detailing various historical examples of the U.S. federal government targeting peaceful dissenters.

This article comes after a recent release of a memo to the state of Missouri, a memo conflating belligerent, right-wing extremist groups—some of whom are racist or anti-Semitic, some of whom are violently opposed to open immigration, some of whom want to impose upon the American people a system of national socialism—with others who, like many of us, simply want to get big government off of our backs.

Thus, tax protesters, second amendment advocates, anti-war activists, goldbugs, Ron Paul enthusiasts, and “sovereign citizens” (who sound like agorists and other natural-law libertarians from the description given)—all my kind of people—are lumped together with the sort of terrorist scum that would burn crosses on other people’s property, blow up abortion clinics, harass undocumented migrant workers, or—like Timothy McVeigh—blow up buildings with innocent people, including children, inside.

On the surface, one might assume Gregory’s article is nothing more than an explanation to people interested that these are two very different camps, and that the sort of people who frequent Campaign for Liberty have no connection to the violent, aggressive goals of various right-wing extremist groups in operation.  But Mr. Gregory’s article goes much further than that.

Gregory’s article takes an in-depth look at the tendency of the government, over the course of U.S. history, to overreact to criticism and suppress dissent, even those most peaceful of dissenters, the Quakers.  Starting from the horrendous Alien and Sedition Acts of Adams and his Federalist Party, the U.S. government has cracked down on free speech and peaceful dissent of Americans from all angles of the political spectrum—left, right, and centre.

There is a lot of history here, and although Gregory handles the material with breathtaking clarity, I’m left wanting to read more.  No doubt, a book could be written on the subject, detailing these various episodes, the various uses of counter-intelligence and infiltration by U.S. officials.  If Gregory were to tackle such a subject in book form, I would surely order a copy.

In any event, this article is worth the read.

—Alexander S. Peak

Trillion dollar ripoff is dead…for now

In Congress, Economics, Libertarian, Personal Responsibility, Politics, Republican, Taxation, Terrorism, Torture, US Government on September 29, 2008 at 7:26 pm

The House version of the Congressional wall street bankers bailout ripoff is dead. Conservative Republicans united with liberal Democrats in a narrow victory against the muddled middle, but the fight is not over.

Terra Eclipse has united a diverse group of interests, including MoveOn, Downsize DC, True Majority, Campaign for Liberty, United Liberty, FreedomWorks and the National Taxpayers Union to oppose and track no votes in the Senate and possible future votes in the House.

pdsa reports at IPR:

Republicans blamed Pelosi’s scathing speech near the close of the debate — which attacked Bush’s economic policies and a “right-wing ideology of anything goes, no supervision, no discipline, no regulation” of financial markets — for the vote’s failure.

“We could have gotten there today had it not been for the partisan speech that the speaker gave on the floor of the House,” Minority Leader John Boehner said. Pelosi’s words, the Ohio Republican said, “poisoned our conference, caused a number of members that we thought we could get, to go south.”

Rep. Roy Blunt, R-Mo., the whip, estimated that Pelosi’s speech changed the minds of a dozen Republicans who might otherwise have supported the plan.

Julie Hirschfeld Davis, “Stunning defeat for economy bailout; stocks plunge“, Associated Press, September 29, 2008

Jeffersonian Democrats: Let’s bring them back!

In Libertarian on September 18, 2008 at 8:51 pm

Paulie Cannoli and I are trying to organize a Jeffersonian “Caucus” within the Democratic Party. The purposes of the group will be to educate people on the principles of Jeffersonianism and encourage people who embrace those principles to run for office as Democrats.

The principles in question are:

  1. Radical Decentralism
  2. Anti-militarism
  3. Opposition to Central Banking

These are the things that Jefferson stood for. Around the country, Democratic Party groups have “Jefferson-Jackson” dinners, while the GOP has “Lincoln Day” celebrations. Lincoln, of course, was a radical centralist, militarist, and fiat-currency lover — the exact opposite of Jefferson.

Indeed, the history of the Republican Party is one of nearly pure evil. So while some Ron Paul supporters say they’re trying to “restore the GOP to its roots,” they don’t realize that George W. Bush is almost perfectly in sync with Lincolnianism. There were/are some good Republicans — Howard H. Buffett and Ron Paul standing out above the rest — but they are the exception to the rule. The Democratic Party, by contrast, has a strong history of classical liberalism, and boasts not only the greatest political philosopher among the presidents (Jefferson), but also the greatest president of all time, and last of the classical liberals, Grover Cleveland.

Yes, this is ancient history. But at least the history legitimately exists. We can point out this history and force statist Democrats to reject or embrace their own party’s legacy. And we can, hopefully, attract people to ideas that are now radical but were once mainstream.

Right now, our group’s agenda is as follows:

  1. Draft statements explaining the basic implications of the three principles with plenty of quotes from Jefferson supporting those principles and their implications
  2. Establish a high-quality Web site with public-domain writings from Jefferson and other classical liberals along with original articles applying Austro-Jeffersonian principles to current issues; as well as a blog highlighting news stories of interest to modern Jeffersonians
  3. Create a Facebook group to spread awareness of our existence and get people to sign on saying they will support Democratic candidates who abide by these principles — if we’re able to attract tens of thousands of members, I’m sure candidates will step up to the plate

We are looking for help with all of the above. If you’re interested, leave a reply.

When the Progressives achieved their “success” in the dreadful teens and twenties, they did so by having a presence in both major parties as well as third parties. There are already “libertarian” Democratic groups, but they don’t exactly embrace the full implications of Jeffersonianism, and thus, they haven’t caught on.

When the Democrats lose this election, improbably (again), perhaps there will be a realization that they’ve been out-big governmented by the GOP. Perhaps new Democrats who take up the ideas of the old Democrats will be allowed to move to the forefront.

A huge majority of Ron Paul’s support came from Democrats, independents, and “others,” and in some states, he got more votes from Democrats than from Republicans. The GOP and conservatism are inextricably linked with anti-Jeffersonian principles and thus, we believe, making the principled populist case for liberty to the working-class electorate of the Democratic Party has more promise than any other option currently available. If you agree — or even if you don’t, but think it’s worth a try — please join us.

Record vote total for LP in 2008: Here’s how!

In Libertarian Party-US on September 11, 2008 at 9:35 pm

Bob Barr and the coterie of conspirators who helped him hijack the LP in May are either intent on destroying the Libertarian Party, or the most incompetent imbeciles in the history of world civilization. Either way, these odious self-important cretins — Bill Redpath, Aaron Starr, Shane Cory, Andrew Davis, Richard Viguerie, Robert Kraus, Russ Verney, etc. — cannot be shamed. Furthermore, they are emboldened by the feeble will of the “outsiders” on the LNC (a few heroic members notwithstanding) who are like infants afraid to do anything or say anything that might contradict Mommy and Daddy. Indeed, these “responsible” libertarians still do not admit that there was a plot to make Barr the nominee dating back at least two years, even with all of the evidence staring at them in the face.

Now Barr — a neocon who is already counting the days until his jump back into the evil Party of Lincoln — has destroyed any claim that the LP had as the rightful political vehicle of the Ron Paul R3VOLution. Well, almost destroyed. There is one way that the LP’s reputation could be restored, and that’s a complete disavowel of the heinous Barr candidacy. Anything less is a slap in the face to Ron Paul and his supporters, and as time continues to tick off the clock, even this radical action is losing its would-be potency.

No one seems to know how “removing” Barr would affect various state ballots. It could be that not having a candidate would ruin the LP’s already crumbling ballot access — crumbling under eunuch gun-grabber Bill Redpath’s purposefully destructive “leadership” — which is quite possibly the agenda behind the Barr/Root neoconspiracy. So I have a better idea.

The LNC should immediately disavow Bob Barr. “He is not a libertarian but a neocon, and anyone associated with him in any way is not a libertarian,” would be my preferred language. “Forty-nine-point-seven percent of our credentialed delegates — many of them never-before ‘libertarians’ there solely to nominate Barr — were duped by this repugnant man, and we now see this. Our apologies to Ron Paul, to America, and the world.”

That’s part 1. Now here’s part 2.

“As the LNC, we are instructing the various Libertarian electors to vote for Ron Paul if the Libertarian ticket carries their state. A vote for ‘Bob Barr’ is a vote for Ron Paul.”

We get rid of Bob Barr, we heal the LP’s relationship with the Campaign for Liberty, and we get a record vote total.

What’s not to like?

Campaign For Liberty, or Campaign For Iconoclasm?

In Libertarian, Libertarian Party-US, Libertarian Politics on September 11, 2008 at 11:33 am

It seems the Barr campaign only belatedly realized that while the Ron Paul R3volution has lots of libertarians in it, it is not quite a libertarian movement.  Ron Paul’s team seems to have more ties to the Constitution Party than to the Libertarian Party.  Despite all the complaints LP radicals have about Barr, do any of them seriously suggest there was ever any chance that Paul would have endorsed Mary Ruwart and thus snubbed all his CP and leftish donors?

I fear there is a bit of truth to the insinuations from the Barr campaign that Paul considers himself and his Campaign For Liberty to be too big/important to stoop to endorsing anyone else for President this year, no matter how ideologically aligned that candidate (or his party) may be.  Ron Paul appears more interested in being a power broker for generic protest votes than in maximizing the vote counts for liberty — or even for constitutionalism.  That’s extremely disappointing.  The Greens and Naderites of 2008 are like the Socialist Party of 1928, who went on to have almost the entirety of their nanny-state economic platform enacted in the subsequent decades.  For Paul to suggest any kind of moral equivalence among these third-party choices is simply disgraceful.  As David Weigel sarcastically wrote on Reason.com: “I’m sure Ron Paul’s campaign got $35 million in donations because people wanted him to advocate for Cynthia McKinney and Ralph Nader getting into presidential debates. Not because people wanted a libertarian-minded candidate to succeed or because they wanted to reform the GOP.”

Still, the Barr campaign appears to have badly fumbled the question of attending Paul’s press conference.  I too loathe socialist Greens and Naderites, but Paul’s “presser” was prima facie about coming together on Paul’s 4-point manifesto and calling for broader participation in the two-party presidential dialogue.  The Barr campaign was tone-deaf to think that Barr is too big a “player” to share a stage with McKinney, or to think it could erase this mistake by making a VP offer that Paul would never accept.  However, in Barr’s defense it made Ron Paul look somewhat ridiculous to turn a microphone over to Ralph Nader and have him prattle on for multiple minutes about how devoted Nader is to the Constitution.  Somebody needs to point out Article I Section 8 to Ralph. I haven’t seen McKinney’s remarks, but I doubt they were any better.  If Nader could use his mic time to hypocritically embrace the Constitution, then Barr could have used his mic time to make the case that voting Libertarian is the right choice for true liberty lovers.

It’s unlikely that any of this will have much impact on the Barr’s vote totals, which I still predict will be a little over a million.  The mainstream media covered this story as “Paul rejects McCain, urges 3rd-party vote”, and only a few thousand voters will ever hear otherwise about this dust-up.  It was already clear that Paul was not going to put his Campaign For Liberty behind the only pro-liberty party on the ballot, no matter who our nominee was — and that’s a very sad commentary on both the C4L and the LP.   This underscores why the freedom movement needs to unite all the voters who seek both more personal liberty and more economic liberty behind the single choice will most move public policy in a libertarian direction — the Libertarian choice.

Statement from Don Rasmussen re Bob Barr

In Libertarian Party-US, Libertarian Politics, Media, People in the news, Personal Responsibility, Politics, Presidential Candidates, Protest on September 10, 2008 at 1:07 pm

What follows is a statement from Don Rasmussen, Events Coordinator for Campaign for Liberty.

“The following reflect my personal feelings and is not endorsed by Dr. Paul or Campaign for Liberty.

I am deeply disappointed by Bob Barr’s decision not to participate in today’s press conference just as I have been disappointed with the Barr campaign throughout this election cycle.

The idea that he was busy is absurd. I am sitting in the National Press Club right now waiting for his hastily called press conference to begin. This is the same building where Dr. Paul’s presser just ended. Barr committed to participate, but had his campaign manager call us minutes before it started to tell us that Bob thinks “it just isn’t worth it.” I look forward to hearing him explain how breaking a promise to Congressman Paul constitutes a wise campaign strategy.

It is my great hope that the alternative parties will present the American people with quality candidates that offer a real option. Clearly the Libertarian Party has failed to do so. Bob Barr has
repeatedly broken his promises to Dr. Paul, showed up uninvited at C4L events, and made statement contrary to Dr. Paul’s beliefs while still claiming the mantle of heir to the R3VOLution.

Hopefully, the LP will find a way to reject this candidate without rejecting the idea of engagement in practical politics.”

Don Rasmussen, Events Coordinator for Campaign For Liberty

Still think people ‘don’t care’ about the Federal Reserve?

In Libertarian on September 2, 2008 at 5:02 pm

Then I guess you aren’t watching the Rally for the Republic today, where mentioning its abolition has provoked unmatched levels of enthusiasm several times.

The first time the Fed was mentioned, there was a long standing ovation and chants of “end the Fed!” The same thing has happened virtually every other time the subject has come up, and guess what: The Rally for the Republic has drawn a crowd around twenty times the size of the pitiful “Libertarian” National Convention, whose delegates were so stupid and unprincipled as to nominate a CIA operative drug warrior. The Rally for the Republic libertarians are about 1000 times smarter and more dedicated than the 49% in Denver who sold out to Barr.

For the Libertarians who, for whatever reason, want to believe the Fed issue is not a popular one; you’re wrong. For those who don’t think it’s important, watch Thomas Woods’s speech. I’ll post it here as soon as it’s up on YouTube.