On March 21 I wrote to Ernest Hancock and Wayne Root:
As a contributor for Independent Political Report, I’m writing to the two of you because in Austin you emerged as the front-runners in the race for Libertarian National Committee Chair. I’ve prepared for each of you a separate set of ten tough but fair questions that should give each of you an opportunity to address some of the issues raised by your respective candidacies for Chair.
Yesterday Hancock replied: “I’m answering them in the DVD that will be sent to all attendees of the past decades conventions so people interested in such things actually get first hand from me what I have to say. You are free to pull from that when you get yours.”
Here are my questions for Hancock:
1. Against Voting. While LNC Chair, would you continue to advocate against voting and use free airtime to announce you haven’t voted since 2004?
2. LPUS Existence. In 2003, you said “The national Party doesn’t even need to exist” and “I’m for the national Party just closing up, moving out of the Watergate, evaporate, and leaving it back to the states”. You presumably would not keep saying things like this if elected Chair. If you are not elected Chair, will you continue to question whether the LPUS is worth joining or even should exist?
3. Violent Revolution. While LNC Chair, would you continue to publicly predict a violent upheaval for which people should stockpile bullets, water, and canned goods?
4. Greatest Depression. While LNC Chair, would you continue to dispense stock market advice (like saying “sell now” before a 35% 12-month increase in the DJIA) and economic predictions (like forecasting “the greatest depression ever” just as the recession was ending and GDP growth resumed)?
5. Bob Barr. Did the Denver delegates nominate a non-libertarian? You say “you’re either a libertarian or you’re not. You’re wanting to leave people alone or you’re not.” Would you say that Bob Barr is disqualified for the following positions?
- Would vote for a Fair Tax if it replaced the income tax
- Defended the authority of the states to outlaw drugs, gay marriage, and abortion
- Would physically secure the borders, checking immigrants for threats to security and health
- Approved of the 2001 U.S. military overthrow of the Taliban in Afghanistan
6. Ron Paul. Is Ron Paul a libertarian? He has expressed support for every single one of the Barr positions listed above. And in his 2008 campaign, Ron Paul also
- Denied ever advocating abolition of public schools
- Said he helped “save” Social Security and would “take care of the people who are dependent on” it
- Advocated financing government with tariffs and excise taxes (which are force initiations, right?)
- Advertised in TV commercials his blanket opposition to student visas from “terrorist nations”
7. Chuck Baldwin. Do you still think that in 2008 the Constitution Party nominated “a good hardcore libertarian”? When you called Chuck Baldwin that in June of 2008, he was running for President on a Constitution Party platform advocating
- banning marriage and adoption by gays
- banning all abortion
- banning suicide
- “restricting access to drugs” and “stopping the flow of illegal drugs into the U.S.”
- “vigorously enforcing our laws against obscenity”
- tariffs “no less than the difference between the foreign item’s cost of production” and U.S. costs
- “a moratorium on immigration”
- “return of a U.S. military presence at the Isthmus of Panama”
8. Conspiracy Theories. While LNC Chair, would you ever seek to have the LP promote any of the following theories?
- The 16th Amendment was never ratified and/or the government’s own laws don’t require paying income tax
- FDR knew Pearl Harbor was about to be attacked
- 9/11 was an inside job
9. Restore04. You were a signatory of the Restore04 petition to restore the 2004 LP Platform. Which, if any, of the following provisions of the 2004 platform — each of which is more extreme than what Ron Paul R3volution ever advocated in 2008 — do you favor restoring?
- “the right of individuals to renounce their affiliation with any government, and to be exempt from the obligations imposed by those governments”
- “repeal of all laws that restrict anyone, including children, from engaging in voluntary exchanges of goods, services or information regarding human sexuality”
- “elimination of all restrictions on immigration”
- “repeal of all taxation”
- “all criminal and civil sanctions against tax evasion should be terminated immediately”
- “privatization of public roads”
- “termination of governmental monopolies for electricity, natural gas, or water supplies”
10. The Pledge. LPUS membership requires pledging that you “oppose the initiation of force to achieve political or social goals”. Should LPUS membership be revoked from people who (like Bob Barr) advocate a Fair Tax, or who (like Ron Paul) advocate tariffs and excise taxes, or who (like David Nolan) say their “preference is for a single tax on land”?