Gary Johnson Encourages Supporters To Vote for Ron Paul in GOP Primary

The Daily Caller interviewed Libertarian Party presidential candidate Gary Johnson today and amongst the most interesting quotes from him was one encouraging his supporters to vote for Ron Paul in the Republican primaries and then vote for him in the general election, operating under the assumption that Paul will not win the Republican nomination.

“Yeah,” he told TheDC when asked if he believes supporters should vote for Paul — with whom he shares many libertarian policy positions.

But, Johnson cautioned, “I’m believing that Ron Paul is not going to win the nomination, and that is the exciting part about this for me. I do think it is about an agenda and a message. I think Ron Paul’s a messenger. I think that I am. I think there are others.”

In a Wednesday statement announcing his Libertarian Party candidacy, Johnson noted, “While Ron Paul is a good man and a libertarian who I proudly endorsed for president in 2008, there is no guarantee he will be the Republican nominee.”

This is probably about the closest he is going to get to an endorsement of Ron Paul, seeing as Johnson is an active Presidential candidate himself.

231 thoughts on “Gary Johnson Encourages Supporters To Vote for Ron Paul in GOP Primary

  1. Austin Battenberg

    I vote Libertarian, but if Ron Paul gets the Republican nod, despite my differences, it will be NO QUESTION that he will have my vote and my support.

  2. Jose C.

    This is interesting. Gary Johnson I thought you want to be elected president. Do you want to be elected President? If not why are you going through this dog and pony show by announcing you are leaving the Republican Party, joining the Libertarian Party, and seeking the nomination for President of the Libertarian Party?

    Okay everyone do not vote for Gary Johnson. Vote for Ron Paul. That is what Gary Johnson wants you to do.

  3. Jeremy C. Young

    This is completely different from Cobb/LaMarche. He’s not telling people not to vote for him, he’s telling them to cast a primary vote for a candidate in another party and then to vote for him in the general. That’s more like Gravel endorsing Jesse Johnson in 2008 than like Cobb/LaMarche.

  4. Tom Blanton

    Here in Virginia one must take a loyalty oath when voting in the GOP primary, pledging to support whoever the eventual nominee is.

    So, Johnson is asking Virginia libertarians to break a sacred oath, knowing full well that God is a vengeful Republican who might strike them down with lightning bolts the minute Johnson is voted for in November.

    Then again, God might forgive those who don’t vote for Romney or Gingrich, assuming God thinks they are assholes.

    Maybe I’ll call Pat Robertson on the 700 Club hotline for some spiritual advice on this matter. I’m thinking I can avoid hellfire and damnation by voting for Ron Paul in the primary and not voting at all on election day and encouraging others not to vote.

    Then there’s the possibility that the Republican God is actually Satan pretending to be the Big Guy.

  5. matt cholko

    Politically, this move makes sense to me. However, a Libertarian encouraging members of his own party to directly involve themselves in the affairs of another party seems strange. Further, in some states, people will need to change their party registration to Republican in order to do as Johnson suggests. Encouraging people to do this is NO F-ING GOOD!

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  7. Peter Orvetti

    Besides the fact that Johnson likes Paul and wants him to do well, it’s just smart politics. Paul is highly unlikely to win the GOP nomination, and is also not likely to make his own third-party run. Johnson also knows Paul is willing to endorse a ticket other than the GOP ticket, since he did so four years ago. This is just an early effort to get Paul’s endorsement come September or so.

  8. Trent Hill Post author

    Peter, as usual, hits the nail on the head. It’s good politics. It will increase his eventual vote total when the hardcore Paulites are trying to decide whether to vote Romney, Obama, Johnson, or Goode in the general.

  9. Gene Berkman

    I think it is pretty clear that Gary Johnson is encouraging his supporters who are already Republicans to now vote for Ron Paul in the primaries.

    He is not encouraging Libertarian Party members to register Republican to vote for Ron Paul.

  10. John Jay Myers

    This is the exact right move for Johnson. He can not afford to Barr this up. I am a huge Ron Paul supporter as I am sure most of you know.

    However I do not feel he will win the nomination, and most of the Ron Paul supporters I know will never vote for any other Republican candidate. Dissing Paul or even not giving him support at this point would be completely ignorant, Johnson can not afford to pull a Barr/Root.

    We must understand that we usually have only around 1000 Libertarian delegates who show up to our convention. So it is hard to believe that those 1000 people will make or break Paul if they don’t vote for him. I personally send money and spread the message. That should cover the fact that I will not vote in the Republican primary.

    But I will be ready to ease disgruntled Paul fans into the party, which we all should be.

  11. Kleptocracy And You

    @11 Ditto GB.

    @ “But I will be ready to ease disgruntled Paul fans into the party, which we all should be”

    me – Correct, but wouldn’t it be BETTER to ease Paul back into the Party, hence pulling 50 to 70 % of his voters to pull the L lever in Nov? A Paul/Johnson Ticket would certainly break all previous LP vote totals. Ron Paul is still one of a few LP POTUS candidate to finish third. AE might make that out of the question, however not from setting some nice numbers in the good guys box in Nov.

    On a very SAD note to me the AP hatchett job on Dr.Paul was picked up by small papers all over the U.S. A local in this area that is only eight pages with a circulation of 20 to 30,000 readers had a Fourteen column inch story on page 5, top of page and entire article above the fold with BOLD half inch headline. VOTERS TAKE SECOND LOOK AT RON PAUL. The first sentence was he wants to Legalize Marijuana. Among all the negatives (to them, and many readers no doubt) it quotes Gingrich saying No “DECENT” person should vote for Paul. Sanitorium said if Paul was elected he wouldn’t be able to get his good things, but only his BAD things accomplished.

    I hope some can see how it works. Paul has to spend almost a million $ on ads in IA showing how Gingrich is a hypocrite. Gingrich for FREE has his rebuttle (contained in a vicious HIT piece) against Paul sent out to EVERY AP subscriber in America. The Kleptocracy owns the AP and Rueters just like they own Gingrich, Romney, Perry, Huntsman and Grecian Phormula PHONY Saniterium.

    If the great media is so great, why haven’t they EXPOSED the true person behind the newsletters? I think most of us know who that who is! But no, the overpaid lazy LACKEYS just need to keep the focus on Paul just long enough to destroy him BEFORE he could catch fire by winning IA. Anyone else, any other time who wins IA makes a big splash. Watch what happens, watch HOW they spin it all this year about Paul if he wins. They have moved the vote tabulation center to an undisclosed location. Sounds to me like the “fix” could be in !

    It will take big buck$ for Paul to get around ALL the negatives being heaped on him. The sad part he is probably the most HONEST, decent man in the major R race.

  12. Robert Capozzi

    14 k: why haven’t they EXPOSED the true person behind the newsletters? I think most of us know who that who is!

    me: Actually, we don’t “know.” Unfortunately, the ghost author has not stepped up, and RP sez he doesn’t know. I wonder: If the ghost and RP have discussed NewsletterGate in recent years, I whether they’ve discussed disclosing who “he” is. It’s not beyond possible that the ghost “has something” on RP….

  13. Humongous Fungus

    Further, in some states, people will need to change their party registration to Republican in order to do as Johnson suggests.

    He should remind them to switch back, or forward, to LP registration when the primary is over.

    Besides the fact that Johnson likes Paul and wants him to do well, it’s just smart politics. Paul is highly unlikely to win the GOP nomination, and is also not likely to make his own third-party run. Johnson also knows Paul is willing to endorse a ticket other than the GOP ticket, since he did so four years ago. This is just an early effort to get Paul’s endorsement come September or so.

    True.

    We must understand that we usually have only around 1000 Libertarian delegates who show up to our convention. So it is hard to believe that those 1000 people will make or break Paul if they don’t vote for him.

    It’s been a while since we’ve had 1,000 – - y2k, if I’m not mistaken, and in most states voting in another party’s primary does not bar you from being an LP delegate. In some states, like Texas, it legally does, although who’s going to enforce it?

  14. Humongous Fungus

    But I will be ready to ease disgruntled Paul fans into the party, which we all should be.

    Yep.

    Correct, but wouldn’t it be BETTER to ease Paul back into the Party, hence pulling 50 to 70 % of his voters to pull the L lever in Nov?

    Of course. But that will be up to him, and he has reasons not to do it as well.

  15. Humongous Fungus

    @16 About time. Why hasn’t that been made more of? I’d have thought I would have heard of that before now.

  16. George Phillies

    Oh, Good.

    We have several states (She Who Is be thanked, not this one) in which ballot access is improved by having more registered Libertarians, and we have a Presidential candidate urging party members to reregister to vote for a Republican.

  17. Melty

    Truly lovely! Mind you, Paul just might be our next pesident. Of course, one should never overestimate the intelligence of the average republican.
    Johnson’s Plan B. … only problem is, primary process maty well remain inconclusive beyond Libertarian Party Covention Weekend.

  18. ATBAFT

    Sometimes I detect panic that RP’s views on foreign policy are being discussed. No, that’s exactly what many libertarians have been hoping for – a chance for a dialogue on these issues. We should welcome the opportunity even as we recognize that only a small number of Americans currently agree. Libertarian thinking is not going to be victorious by “slipping one over on the public.” Hone your arguments and stand up proudly and advocate them!

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  20. Melty

    thanx for sayin dat, Around, …sane foreign policy need be discussed for a change.
    On dat topic, n dis topic, Johnson best take back what he sed bout Gitmo, n come out full on for shuttin it down, n pronto.

  21. Thomas L. Knapp

    ATBAFT@24,

    If the “panic” you’re referring to is in the libertarian movement, I think you’re incorrect. To me, the airing of his foreign policy prescriptions are the one really redeeming aspect of his campaign.

  22. AnthonyD.

    you know, I wonder if Ron Paul is considering the possibility that this Ron Paul situation may evolve to the point where he’ll have no option BUT to run 3rd party/independent.

    Granted, I put the chances in the “slim” category, but you have intriguing parameters developing: a candidate whose supporters refuse to vote for someone else, and a party seemingly bent on disavowing him. Where’s a paulbot to go?

  23. Thomas L. Knapp

    AnthonyD,

    It does indeed seem like a conundrum for Paul.

    Personally, I think the deciding factor may likely be what effect his own actions would have on his son’s future prospects.

    If he thinks Rand has a real shot in 2016 or 2020 as a GOP candidate, he may stay GOP in order not to hurt that shot, and attempt to maintain the movement he’s built and roll it over into that shot.

  24. Curt Boyd

    So, when this backfires, and Ron Paul (hypothetically) gets the Republican nomination, does Gary Johnson withdraw from the race?

  25. Stewart Flood

    We can’t do this in South Carolina — at least not those of us who are/were convention delegates at a county or state convention. Our convention is considered the same as a primary, so voting in another party’s presidential primary would be double-voting.

    Of course that only limits a few of the libertarians who live in South Carolina. I believe this was the primary reason why our convention attendance was down, since many of our regular convention attendees know that they could not vote for Dr Paul if they came to our convention.

    I would certainly encourage any libertarian who was not at our state convention to vote for Dr Paul. If, as most expect, he does not gain the nomination of the party of Greed, cOrruPtion and fascist evil (the democrats being the party of greeD, corruptioN and soCialist evil), we can hope that they will support whoever our party’s nominee is during the general election next November.

  26. Humongous Fungus

    If Ron Paul looks like he’s on track to get the Republican nomination in May (highly unlikely), LP delegates will nominate NOTA anyway, whether Johnson still wants to run or not, is my prediction.

  27. ATBAFT

    #28 Mr. Knapp: No, i see the panic among some RP supporters who seem to think untoward attention is being paid to RP’s foreign policy views as he surges in Iowa. Perhaps they just weren’t as ready to defend those views as they were his economic views.

  28. Kevin Knedler

    If you live in OHIO, please think seriously about this before you vote for Ron Paul in the GOP Ohio Primary in March. In OHio, the ONLY way to party register is via a party primary. Once you vote in the primary, you can’t switch for two years in most instances!!! Furthermore, the Ohio LPO bylaws have requirements for the Ohio delegation to the national convention: #1 be an Ohio resident, #2 Sign the LP national pledge, and # 3 is the BIG ONE– vote in the LP Primary in OHio to be party registered. So anyone that votes in the GOP primary for Ron Paul, couldn’t be considered to vote at the National LP convention with Ohio delegation. Not that there will any instances of this.

  29. AnthonyD.

    Thomas L. Knapp @ 30,

    I think you are right on both counts. Blood is blood, and I can’t see Ron doing anything thats going to mortally wound his son’s political career.

    Still, I have to wonder where the neocon Newt Gingrich’s head is sometimes. To say he was being imprudent with his comments about not voting for Paul is the understatement of the century. You’d think someone from the GOP itself would tell him to criticize Paul’s positions all he wants, but otherwise shut up, or they could have a serious problem on their hands.

  30. Kevin Knedler

    Ron Paul in a 3rd party run. He better hurry up and decide then. Ballot Access isn’t easy in a lot of states. My opinion is that he stays with GOP to bitter end, just like 2008. But, if he was going to change, he would need to do it by May 5, 2012. That date has a nice ring to it.

  31. AnthonyD.

    Kevin @ 35,

    I’m in Cleveland. Which primary are you saying I have to vote in to be eligible to be a delegate?

  32. AnthonyD.

    Kevin @ 37,

    I hear you on ballot access. The thing is, in this 24-hour news cycle era, by May 5, he might have started a boulder rolling down a hill that not even he could put the brakes on…

  33. paulie

    Only a few states have state laws or party rules that preclude people from being LP delegates if they vote for Ron Paul in the primary. If this year is like past years those people will be able to join other states’ delegations that have no such rule.

  34. paulie

    Johnson’s Plan B. … only problem is, primary process may well remain inconclusive beyond Libertarian Party Covention Weekend.

    I don’t think it will. I don’t have to like it, and I don’t, but I think Romney will have it sown up well before then.

    Here’s a thought though: would Paul have the juice to get a VP spot on the ticket for Rand in exchange for not going LP? Hmmm….

  35. Jose C.

    @ 4,6,7,10,13,17,22,26, 32: Think about the consequences about doing what Gary Johnson is asking us to do. It might affect ballot access. In California a party needs a certain amount of registrants in order to have ballot access. If the registration of a political party falls below a certain threshold the party will loose ballot access. If every registered Libertarian in California listens to Gary Johnson and changes their registration to the Republican Party to vote for Ron Paul in the primary the Party will loose ballot access. Is this what we want? Obviously not.

    This does not now look like a good idea does it? No. Gary Johnson or those advising him should do some research before he gives any more advice that we should support and vote for a candidate for President of another political party.

  36. paulie

    Think about the consequences about doing what Gary Johnson is asking us to do. It might affect ballot access. In California a party needs a certain amount of registrants in order to have ballot access. If the registration of a political party falls below a certain threshold the party will loose ballot access. If every registered Libertarian in California listens to Gary Johnson and changes their registration to the Republican Party to vote for Ron Paul in the primary the Party will loose ballot access. Is this what we want? Obviously not.

    There is plenty of time for anyone who registers Republican to vote for Paul in the primary to register Libertarian by the time it affects LP ballot access. The party does need to be organized to make sure people remember to do that, though.

    In many states it is not an issue at all.

  37. AnthonyD.

    Paulie @ 41,

    I don’t see the GOP allowing that trade to happen, nor do I consider a guy like Mitt Romney, he of Bain Capital, even considering it. He’s gonna pick some inoffensive current governor somewhere with a conservative bent, if you asked me.

  38. Kleptocracy And You

    @ 16 -this is four years late. If Paul had done this in ’07 they couldn’t have used it successfully in ’11-’12 !

    I TOO think Paul’s foreign policy is the best part, however he needs to EXPLAIN the situation better.

    Like Johnson has stated in the past, it makes no sense to BORROW from China and turn around and give it to foreign countries. I will go so far to say it is INSANITY or a “plan” that is INSANE…..

    Paul/Johnson ?!

  39. Kleptocracy And You

    @16 –
    *Mr. Paul described Mr. Rockwell and Mr. Rothbard as political provocateurs. “They enjoyed antagonizing people, to tell you the truth, and trying to split people,” he said. “I thought, we’re so small, why shouldn’t we be talking to everybody and bringing people together?”

    me-BIG TENT L’ism is what RP believes.

    *He said he did not discuss the content of the newsletters with Mr. Rockwell because readers never complained. “I was pretty careless about what was going in my own newsletter — that was my biggest fault,” he (Ron Paul) said.

    me- RP put 5 children through college without GRANTS, I can’t blame him for accepting $1.whatever million from Rockwell for the use of his name on a newsletter, however his laziness in monitering the contents are now taking a large BITE out of his backside !

    *Mr. Paul said he did not recall that conversation, which was first reported in the libertarian publication Reason, and doubted that he would have known what lists were being used on his behalf. Yet he said he would not have a problem seeking support from such a list.

    “I’ll go to anybody who I think I can convert to change their viewpoints — so that would be to me incidental,” he said. “I’m always looking at converting people to look at liberty the way I do.”-Ron Paul

    Me- Obama is predicted to raise $1 Billion this cycle. I can’t blame Paul for accepting donation from ANY sourse that will donate. You can see his intentions seem honest enough. Look down on me, but when I ran twice on the LP ticket I would have WELCOMED donations from anyone ! I FORCED no one to give, it would have been a voluntary action on the givers part. Now if the giver TOLD me they expected something “special” from me I may have rejected the gift. However as Ls we don’t have to worry about bribes at this time. If we won, then the Lobbyist would show up at our doors.

    Paul/Johson ’12 ?!

  40. George Phillies

    @31 If Johnson withdraws, his VP becomes our Presidential candidate.

    @33 If the LNC Convention fails to nominate a candidate, that Libertarian Party has just committed suicide, though like the dinosaur that shoots itself in the head, the rest of it may take a while to notice.

  41. Be Rational

    No matter what Paul or Johnson eventually do this cycle, the LP must run a team for P/VP.

    George Phillies is correct. To fail to run at all would be suicide for the party. It’s likely the delegates will realize this, however, so very unlikely the LP will fail to muster a ticket – even if Paul wins every primary from now till May.

  42. Kevin Knedler

    @ # 38.
    TO be in the Ohio LP delegation at the national LP convention, YOU MUST be a registered Libertarian in OHio. The only way to do that in Ohio is to vote in the Primary. We have tough rules to ward-off a “hostile takeover”.

  43. Stephen

    Stewart/Phillies…please get a life. How do you grow the LP Party by bashing everyone that comes to the LP? Last time I checked I really don’t think all 10 people at the South Carolina Convention will mind voting for something positive. Just a thought….what if the LP supports Ron Paul until he pulls out and then his supporters help Johnson and the LP….Oh that’s right I use logic so I guess that wont work in the LP

  44. Steve

    I think most of us in Iowa figured this out on our own a while ago. When I tried to campaign for Johnson, I got an awful lot of “he’s my 2nd choice.” I just hope the Paul supporters are smart enough to realize that they need to go for Johnson in November.

  45. AnthonyD.

    Steve @54,

    They are definitely smart enough to realize they need to support Johnson. However, my fear is that they are not independent-thinking enough to do so, absent a direct endorsement by Ron.

    The Ron Paul supporters remind me of Fight Club: a group originated to fight the conformity of society devolves into an even worse example of such.

  46. Gene Berkman

    GP @ 22 and Jose C @42 – Gary Johnson did not urge Libertarians to re-register as Republicans to vote for Ron Paul in the primaries.

    He recognized that there are hundreds of thousands – maybe a million or two – registered Republicans who favor limited government and are war-weary and hoping for a libertarian message. He is suggesting these people vote for Ron Paul in the primaries, and then vote for him in November after the Republicans nominate another big government candidate.

    Why is that so hard to understand?

  47. Gene Berkman

    Ron Paul is not likely to run third party for a couple of reasons:

    (1) he is 76 years old and has already said he is not sure he has the stamina for a long primary campaign;

    (2) sore loser laws will hamper ballot access in several states;

    (3) I don’t think Ron Paul wants people to think he entered the primaries in bad faith.

    Additionally, the media won’t let the newsletter story die. I am convinced I know who wrote the newsletters, and why Paul paid so little attention to them, but it is not a handicap we need for the Libertarian Party campaign in the fall.

    John Anderson could run in the Republican primaries and then switch to Independent because the left-liberal establishment media was positive toward him and hated Ronald Reagan.

    If Paul were to run third party, MSNBC etc would keep the newsletter story going, and Hannity, Rush etc would constantly be attacking and ridiculing Ron Paul for his foreign policy views and for splitting the conservative vote.

    There is no reason to put Paul through that.

    And in any case, Gary Johnson is closer to the LP position on abortion and immigration than Paul, so we should be happy with the two party two step that is developing.

  48. Robert Capozzi

    57 gb, tk linked to the NYT story in which, as I read it, RP is effectively IDing Rockwell and Rothbard as the ghost writers of the hate. If RP resets the narrative on NewsletterGate entirely, it dies. The networks, CNN, and MSNBC will, thinking Paul hurts the Rs. Fox probably does, too.

  49. Stewart Flood

    Stephen @53,

    Who was I bashing? And there were more than ten people at our convention. There were about a dozen or so who STAYED until the debate which was held several hours after the convention ended.

    Whether or not they want to vote for Paul isn’t the issue. You can’t vote in the primary in two different parties in the same year. That’s called DOUBLE VOTING and is frowned upon by those in power.

    I can’t vote in our presidential primary (which is actually at our convention) and vote in another party’s presidential primary. How is saying that bashing people?

    Again, we had more than 10 people. We usually have between 35 to 50 people. I believe there were somewhere between 25 to 30.

    If you consider that we are even close to being one of the larger state parties and that as a ratio of candidates to population we usually run far more candidates than the larger state affiliates, we are probably doing better than might be expected. But the penalty for going to the state convention and voting on candidates is that you cannot voter in the other guys’ primaries! Voters who cast ballots in the democrats’ primary can’t vote in the republicans’ primary and vice-versa. So how can we?

    Our state had six congressional seats in congress in 2010 and the LP ran five partisan candidates for congress (plus about a dozen for state-house).

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  51. richard winger

    No state can enforce a “sore loser” law, relating to presidential primaries. No one has ever been kept off a general election ballot for president on the grounds that he or she ran in a presidential primary in a different party. People who have run in presidential primaries, and then appeared on the November ballot under a different label, are Theodore Roosevelt in 1912, Robert La Follette in 1924, John Anderson in 1980, Lyndon LaRouche many times 1984-1996, David Duke in 1988, and Gus Hall in 1976.

    The true candidates in November are the candidates for presidential elector. They are qualified and they aren’t “sore losers”. The presidential candidates’ names are on the ballot in November, not as candidates, but as labels for competing slates of presidential electors. The electors, who are legally eligible, have a free speech right to say whom they would vote for in December if they were elected to the electoral college.

    So if Ron Paul wanted the LP nomination in 2012 (which I don’t think he does), he could do it. If worst came to worst and some state refused, that state’s LP could then just say its elector candidates are pledged to Ron Paul, Jr. And then the electors could tell the world if they are elected to the electoral college, they will really vote for Ron Paul, Sr.

  52. Root's Teeth Are Awesome!

    1. I don’t see that Paul’s endorsement of Johnson or the LP would help Johnson much. Paul’s endorsement of Baldwin in ’08 didn’t do much.

    Rightly or wrongly, Paul’s supporters want Paul, not just any old libertarian or Constitutionalist.

    2. I also don’t see that the newsletter issue, or any of the attacks on Paul, hurt Paul. His supporters don’t care what Hannity or Rush or MSNBC say.

    Many of Paul’s supporters are anti-establishment, so the more the establishment (liberal or conservative) attack Paul, the greater Paul’s credibility in the eyes of his supporters.

    3. Paul’s fans are entirely different from Root’s fans. Paul draws from the left, radical libertarians, Constitutionalists, Truthers, antiwar activists, etc.

    Root draws from neocon talk radio and Fox News.

    Not only two entirely different groups, but two groups that hate each other.

    Can Johnson credibly attract both Paul and Root supporters?

  53. AnthonyD

    Mr. Winger @ 63,

    Thanks for the explanation. The question I have, then, is: what is the point of the “sore loser” laws? Is it ultimately just a scare tactic? An obstacle set up to put a patina of illegitimacy on anyone who attempts a party switch?

    By the way, is their a Ron Paul, Jr, or are you pointing out that the electors could even pledge their votes to a mythical person?

  54. George Phillies

    @ 53 “How do you grow the LP Party by bashing everyone that comes to the LP?”

    There is not a proposal that Governor Johnson join the party. There is a proposal that he should become our Presidential candidate.

    You may convert and join our Circle, but we do not make you right off the Mistress of Wands. You may convert and join our Synagogue, but you do not immediately become our Rebbe.

    On the bright side, Governor Johnson’s motive is revenge, and that is a very powerful motive.

  55. AnthonyD

    Root’s Teeth Are Awesome! @ 64,

    1. The only counterpoint I would make here is that the Ron Paul of 2008 finished in 5th place with 10% in the Iowa Caucus. The Ron Paul of 2012 might actually win the thing. RP is doing well in New Hampshire as well. Point is, his endorsement might actually mean something this time. It might even mean something real big (or it might not. I concede that point).

    2. The newsletters certainly do not hurt Paul with regard to the Paulbots. They don’t matter to me either, as a Libertarian. The problem is, I think they do matter to the unwashed masses. The guy would have a difficult ceiling to crash through because of his positions alone. These newsletters just make it a hell of a lot tougher.

    3. Root gets a lot of media airtime, in my opinion. I hear him on the radio a lot. I wish that Root had the humility to just run for mayor somewhere (Vegas?), as a Libertarian. Keep him away from issues regarding foreign policy. I actually think he might be an allright Libertarian mayor, especially for a city like Vegas.

  56. Michael H. Wilson

    Stewart Flood at 60 wrote; We usually have between 35 to 50 people. I believe there were somewhere between 25 to 30.

    I do not intend this to be criticism of anyone in South Carolina, but the LP has been in business quite a few years. We need to get to the point of turning out 100 to 200 or more people at these conventions if we expect to be viewed with some credibility by the press and the general public.

  57. Trent Hill Post author

    “1. I don’t see that Paul’s endorsement of Johnson or the LP would help Johnson much. Paul’s endorsement of Baldwin in ’08 didn’t do much.”

    This is quite untrue. Baldwin scored the highest ever vote total for a CP Presidential candidate despite not being on the ballot in two of their strongest states, numerically, Pennsylvania and California.

  58. Thomas L. Knapp

    @67,

    “The newsletters certainly do not hurt Paul with regard to the Paulbots. They don’t matter to me either, as a Libertarian. The problem is, I think they do matter to the unwashed masses. ”

    Maybe not even especially to the unwashed masses, at least at the moment.

    Their important effect right now is among GOP caucus participant and primary voters.

    And more specifically, among those who aren’t yet wholly, irreversibly committed to a candidate.

    For most of those, the “newsletter controversy” is a negative — maybe a big negative, maybe a small negative, but a negative of some kind — with respect to Paul in the equation that solves for which candidate’s side of the fence they come down on.

  59. Robert Capozzi

    64 rtaa: Many of Paul’s supporters are anti-establishment, so the more the establishment (liberal or conservative) attack Paul, the greater Paul’s credibility in the eyes of his supporters.

    me: LOL. TK nails it. Sure, RP true-believers can largely overlook NewsletterGate. Were this merely a cadre-building exercise, getting a tiny minority to drink the Kool-Aid may well be sufficient.

    Having a cadre is important in electoral politics, but building broad-based goodwill is more important. Even if we viewed Paul 12 as an educational exercise, the association with haters is a repellent, a BIG one. For my money, RP still can fix this wound; cut off the malignant growth and cauterize it. My read is he’s been trying to finesse the matter, but I don’t think it’s working.

    Oddly, this reminds me of Herman Cain, in a very different way. Let’s assume that Cain had been a serial womanizer, which seems to be the case. Then he gets the idea: Hey, I’ll run for prez. Somehow, he must not have been paying attention to Gary Hart, Bill Clinton, etc. I’ll just run for prez and my past will never come up.

    To which I say: Really?

  60. Stewart Flood

    MW @68,

    I certainly agree. Because ballot access demands strict adherence to the state election law, we have moved to a split convention process. In past election cycles, we held one convention in the spring. This was following the filing period for candidates, and before the deadline for conventions to be completed.

    At each convention we are required (by state law) to hold a vote on whether we wish to nominate by convention or by primary. State law requires that to nominate by convention the motion must pass by a positive vote of at least 3/4 of the delegates.

    Since we had been holding the convention after the end of filing period, it would not actually be possible to run candidates if the vote were to ever fail to pass by 3/4 and we held a primary.

    So we have split our convention into two parts. The first, in the fall, is where we do “party business”, including bylaws, platform and election of officers. We then recess, pending recall by the chair.

    The second half of the convention will take place after candidates have filed. This event will have a lot more people at it, since candidate’s supports will be there to vote for them. And, of course, candidates who are not necessarily “hard core” libertarians who are willing to sit through bylaws debates will be there.

    Hopefully this will actually improve attendance at the nominating convention since they won’t be bored to death as they have in past years.

    It also means that candidates already know what our platform is for this election cycle. They don’t sit there (again bored for hours) while we debate whether to change an “and” to an “or” and spend hours (as we did this time) debating whether to add issues to the platform that really don’t need to be addressed at the state level.

    We are hoping that this will help grow the party faster. Get the business out of the way in the fall, have lots of stumping and selection of candidates in the spring.

    Who knows…maybe we’ll have a hundred people there. It could happen…

  61. paulie

    George Phillies is correct. To fail to run at all would be suicide for the party. It’s likely the delegates will realize this, however, so very unlikely the LP will fail to muster a ticket – even if Paul wins every primary from now till May.

    In the unlikely event that Paul is in position to win the Republican nomination, I don’t think the delegates will realize that. It will be NOTA at that point – I’d bet on it.

  62. paulie

    Stephen,

    Just a thought….what if the LP supports Ron Paul until he pulls out and then his supporters help Johnson and the LP….

    It is up to the delegates at the national convention in May to decide who the LP supports. Many (I would say most, but I have no official data, that is anecdotal) LP members already support Ron Paul. Considering that the party’s official press releases indicate support for Paul (for example see http://www.lp.org/news/press-releases/libertarians-welcome-governor-gary-johnson-to-party-presidential-race) and that in 2008 the LNC voted to ask Paul to seek the LP nomination, there’s not much else the LP can officially do at this stage.

    Your idea also depends on when Paul “pulls out.” That could be after the LP convention.

    Also, not all of Ron Paul’s supporters will support the LP no matter what. Some are die hard Republicans, some consider Obama to be the “lesser evil” (a lot fewer than last time, though), some will vote for the Constitution Party, some will write in Ron Paul whether it counts or not, etc.

    An endorsement from Paul would help, but it would only bring over some of his supporters.

  63. paulie

    Anthony,

    They are definitely smart enough to realize they need to support Johnson. However, my fear is that they are not independent-thinking enough to do so, absent a direct endorsement by Ron.

    The Ron Paul supporters remind me of Fight Club: a group originated to fight the conformity of society devolves into an even worse example of such.

    Ron Paul endorsed Baldwin in 2008. I do believe it helped Baldwin, but not nearly to the extent you imply, whether in terms of votes, money or volunteer time.

    Paul’s supporters scattered to the four winds in the general election regardless of Paul’s endorsement.

    I suspect the same thing will happen again.

  64. paulie

    plenty of time for anyone who registers Republican to vote for Paul in the primary to register Libertarian by the time it affects LP ballot access

    Lake, well may be an ethical issue …..

    I don’t think so.

  65. paulie

    Gene,

    (1) he is 76 years old

    I don’t know whether Lew Rockwell blog is just being sycophantic, but they claim he is in great physical health, better than many of the younger candidates.

    (2) sore loser laws will hamper ballot access in several states;

    They don’t apply to presidential candidates.

    (3) I don’t think Ron Paul wants people to think he entered the primaries in bad faith.

    Other concerns may overcome that. However, ultimately I think you are probably right, for different reasons (family, mostly).

    Additionally, the media won’t let the newsletter story die. I am convinced I know who wrote the newsletters, and why Paul paid so little attention to them, but it is not a handicap we need for the Libertarian Party campaign in the fall.

    Paul has now publicly said who wrote them. We will be identified with the newsletter controversy anyway, since people already believe Ron Paul (and even less logicly Rand Paul, who has as far as I know never been an LP member, says he is neither a libertarian nor a Libertarian, and whom the former LPKY chair says is neither libertarian nor Libertarian) …is a (L)ibertarian.

    If Paul were to run third party, MSNBC etc would keep the newsletter story going, and Hannity, Rush etc would constantly be attacking and ridiculing Ron Paul for his foreign policy views and for splitting the conservative vote.

    It may be as you say, or it may be that MSNBC et al would consider him to help Obama.

    But so what if they do?

    Being attacked is part of real world politics. If you don’t get attacked, you can’t be making much of a difference.

  66. paulie

    Teeth

    . I don’t see that Paul’s endorsement of Johnson or the LP would help Johnson much. Paul’s endorsement of Baldwin in ’08 didn’t do much.

    Rightly or wrongly, Paul’s supporters want Paul, not just any old libertarian or Constitutionalist.

    I said the same thing shortly before reading your comment. However, while I don’t think a Paul endorsement of Johnson would bring in all or nearly all of his support to the LP, I think it would bring in more than it did for Baldwin.

    . I also don’t see that the newsletter issue, or any of the attacks on Paul, hurt Paul. His supporters don’t care what Hannity or Rush or MSNBC say.

    Somewhat, but not entirely, true. I know some people that stopped supporting Paul over the issue 4 years ago, and it is cutting into some of the more recent softcore support in Iowa.

    I think Gene’s point is not how hardcore Paul supporters would take it, but how it would cause many in the general public to view and treat libertarians in general. Which is somewhat true, unfortunately.

    Many of Paul’s supporters are anti-establishment, so the more the establishment (liberal or conservative) attack Paul, the greater Paul’s credibility in the eyes of his supporters.

    Yes, that is true of a fair number of Paul supporters as well.

    Paul’s fans are entirely different from Root’s fans. Paul draws from the left, radical libertarians, Constitutionalists, Truthers, antiwar activists, etc.

    Root draws from neocon talk radio and Fox News.

    Not only two entirely different groups, but two groups that hate each other.

    Can Johnson credibly attract both Paul and Root supporters?

    He can attract some, but not all, of both.

    I expect he would do better with Paul supporters than with Root supporters who are not already identified with the LP.

  67. paulie

    I do not intend this to be criticism of anyone in South Carolina, but the LP has been in business quite a few years. We need to get to the point of turning out 100 to 200 or more people at these conventions if we expect to be viewed with some credibility by the press and the general public.

    Back in the Harry Browne days we were doing that at some state conventions I attended, such as California and Georgia.

    Going back to those same states several years later, I was struck by how much their conventions had shrunk.

  68. paulie

    Kanpp @72 and Capozzi #73…mostly agreed.

    WRT Cain however, I don’t think his real objective was to be president or his party’s nominee.

    He made himself much netter known, which will mean more money from books, speeches, organizations, etc. And probably more and hotter women. So, mission accomplished.

  69. Robert Capozzi

    Fwiw, I could imagine RP could stay in the GOP past May, but then the LNC andthe nominee engineer a replacement of RP for, say, GJ. I think that’s do-able.

  70. AnthonyD

    paulie @ 84,

    LOL on that last couple of sentences. Truly, I hope you are correct about his rationale for running. I can understand the desire for hotter women (or men if those are your proclivities).

    Sadly, I fear the worst: that this bozo actually thought he could run the country, and thought that his boorish behavior would not get out, because, well, he’s Herman Cain, and they’re just a bunch of floozies who are lucky to be assaulted by him.

  71. AnthonyD

    paulie @ 80,

    “Paul has now publicly said who wrote them [the newsletters]. We will be identified with the newsletter controversy anyway..”

    exactly. This is something that pisses me off about Ron Paul vis a vi this newsletter situation.

    There is a famous scene in Casino where Joe Pesci has some small-time thug’s head in a vice, this after having guys beat the poor bastard up for tw0 days trying to get a name out of him. Well, finally, after the guy’s eyeball pops out, he relents and gives up the name. Whereupon Pesci’s character gets livid, and screams, “Charlie M.? Charlie M? You? make me pop your fucking eye outta ya head to protect that piece a’ shit, CHARLIE M!!? YOU DUMB MUDDAFUCKER!!”

    Anyway, the point here is obvious: Paul holds out for years and years, dragging the good name of liberty through the mud protecting those two pieces of racist shit?

    If I were a violent man, I’d like to put Paul out of misery now just like Pesci’s character did, for allowing this garbage to go on as long as it did.

  72. Gene Berkman

    GP @ 66 says – “You may convert and join our Circle, but we do not make you right off the Mistress of Wands. You may convert and join our Synagogue, but you do not immediately become our Rebbe.”

    In business it is common to hire a CEO from outside the company. One looks for talent and ability, and if nobody in the company has the requisite ability, you hire from outside.

    I don’t see any of the current candidates for the Libertarian Party nomination for President having the ability to run a national campaign or the credentials to be taken seriously, except for Gary Johnson.

    Gov. Johnson’s strength is that he has a record in public office. Any of the other hopefuls for the LP nomination are running strictly on rhetoric – rhetoric often too extreme for most Americans, and rhetoric not backed up by any kind of record.

  73. Thomas L. Knapp

    @79,

    “I don’t think so.”

    I agree. The LP is really no different than most organizations — ethics is a weapon to be used against those outside the tribe, not something to take seriously inside it.

  74. Business or Religion?

    @ 88, Sure, a business may hire a CEO from another business, but that CEO is already a businessperson.

    But a synagogue would not appoint a recent convert to Judaism to be its Rebbe.

    If you see the LP as merely a vote-getting machine, than Berkman’s analogy to a business may be appropriate. You pick a candidate with organizational and media skills.

    But if you see the LP as having an ideological mission, then Phillies’s analogy to a religion is more appropriate. You want a leader who actually understands and believes your set of beliefs.

  75. Gene Berkman

    “You want a leader who actually understands and believes your set of beliefs.”

    In case you are not aware of the history, there was a Libertarian Movement before the formation of The Libertarian Party.

    Libertarianism remains a set of beliefs that many people hold who are not members of The Libertarian Party. When The Libertarian Party was founded, the first to join were people who were already libertarians, and over the years people have joined who were already libertarians, but had not previously found The Libertarian Party significant enough to join.

    If Gary Johnson or Ron Paul hold libertarian views on the major public policy issues, that is more important than their previous affiliation.

    And there are people involved in The Libertarian Party who hold very non-libertarian beliefs about party loyalty.

  76. Andy

    “I don’t see any of the current candidates for the Libertarian Party nomination for President having the ability to run a national campaign or the credentials to be taken seriously, except for Gary Johnson.”

    The only problem is that Gary Johnson is not much of a libertarian and his campaign for the Republican nomination was pretty pathetic.

  77. Andy

    “I don’t see that Paul’s endorsement of Johnson or the LP would help Johnson much. Paul’s endorsement of Baldwin in ’08 didn’t do much.”

    Ron Paul’s endorsement of Chuck Baldwin came late in the election cycle and by that point it was too late for the Constitution Party to obtain ballot access in several states (note that the Constitution Party was only on the ballot in 37 states in 2008, and note that they missed the ballot in several high population states). Baldwin jumped in the race for the Constitution Party’s nomination late and had a poorly organized campaign.

    I think that Ron Paul’s endorsement actually did help Chuck Baldwin, but it didn’t help as much as it would have if Baldwin and the Constitution Party had had their shit together better.

  78. Andy

    “Paul has now publicly said who wrote them.”

    He did??? I must have missed this. I know that Lew Rockwell was an editor, but I don’t know who all exactly wrote what. I’ve heard that they had several writers. Rockwell may have written some of the controversial passages, but I’m guessing that the comments in question were made by more than one person.

  79. Andy

    “You want a leader who actually understands and believes your set of beliefs.”

    I don’t want a leader. I want individual freedom.

  80. Andy

    “Paul’s supporters scattered to the four winds in the general election regardless of Paul’s endorsement.”

    Yep, Ron Paul’s support could have gone to a good Libertarian Party candidate that really had their shit together, but instead the Libertarian Party nominated a non-libertarian in Bob Barr. The Barr campaign was such a disgrace that it turned off the majority of the potential supporters that backed Ron Paul in the Republican primaries.

    Some of Ron Paul’s support did go to Barr however, but some of it went to Chuck Baldwin. Some of it actually went to Ralph Nader and some to Cynthia McKinney. Some of it even went to Barrack Obama and John McCain, only with the hope of keeping one of them out of office. Some of Ron Paul’s supporters still voted for Ron Paul as a write in vote (which is what I did), and Ron Paul supporters in Louisiana and Montana actually did get to vote for Ron Paul because he was on the ballot in both of those states even though he didn’t want to be on the ballot in those states for the general election. There were also Ron Paul supporters who didn’t bother to vote because they were disappointed that Ron Paul didn’t get the nomination and they were not happy with any of the choices that were on the ballot in November.

    “I suspect the same thing will happen again.”

    Yes, unfortunately it does look like we could see a repeat of 2008, as in there is no strong pro-liberty candidate for Ron Paul supporters to get behind if Ron Paul gets eliminated from the Republican primary and doesn’t go “3rd party” or independent.

  81. Andy

    “So if Ron Paul wanted the LP nomination in 2012 (which I don’t think he does), he could do it.”

    I’d love it if there were announcement at the LP National Convention that went like this, “Ladies and gentleman, we have a special guest today.” and then the lights went out for a few moments. Then the lights comes back on and Ron Paul is standing at the podium on the main stage. The convention hall would go wild with applause and Dr. Paul would take the LP nomination in a landslide. Then the Libertarian Party would finally move up to the big time.

  82. Andy

    “Just a thought….what if the LP supports Ron Paul until he pulls out and then his supporters help Johnson and the LP….”

    I wouldn’t automatically assume that all of Ron Paul’s supporters are going to be wild for Gary Johnson. Some people assumed that all of the Ron Paul supporters were going to get behind Bob Barr and look how that turned out.

  83. Brian Holtz

    Ditto to Gene @91.

    OnTheIssues scores Johnson at 70/70.

    Johnson’s web site is somewhat thin on policy details, but there’s enough there for me to consider him acceptably libertarian:

    His score will likely improve as we get clarity about his positions on campaign finance, Social Security, healthcare, minimum wage, etc.

  84. paulie

    The LP is really no different than most organizations — ethics is a weapon to be used against those outside the tribe, not something to take seriously inside it.

    What’s unethical about changing party registration as many times as you wish? More than once a day may be impractical, but otherwise I think there is no problem whatsoever – certainly not an ethical one.

  85. paulie

    I don’t see any of the current candidates for the Libertarian Party nomination for President having the ability to run a national campaign or the credentials to be taken seriously, except for Gary Johnson.

    Johnson isn’t going to be president (at least not next year) any more than the rest of them, and it doesn’t take experience as a governor to run a campaign, so he’ll mainly be judged just like the others, on rhetoric and in limited fora.

    On the plus side, his rhetoric does not include support for state banks, a defense of bestiality, the federal government printing unlimited amounts of fiat money, the idea that abortion is unconstitutional, or news anchor women and the FBI watching him masturbate through his TV set. On the negative side, it includes support for the “fair” tax and Guantanamo Bay.

  86. paulie

    If you see the LP as merely a vote-getting machine, than Berkman’s analogy to a business may be appropriate. You pick a candidate with organizational and media skills.

    But if you see the LP as having an ideological mission, then Phillies’s analogy to a religion is more appropriate. You want a leader who actually understands and believes your set of beliefs.

    I would say a political party is somewhere in between the two in this regard.

  87. paulie

    When The Libertarian Party was founded, the first to join were people who were already libertarians, and over the years people have joined who were already libertarians, but had not previously found The Libertarian Party significant enough to join.

    It’s also true that many people have joined over the years who are not libertarian on the issues. In some cases they are libertarian on one or a few issues that matter most to them, in others it just serves as a generic third party, etc.

  88. paulie

    I know that Lew Rockwell was an editor, but I don’t know who all exactly wrote what. I’ve heard that they had several writers. Rockwell may have written some of the controversial passages, but I’m guessing that the comments in question were made by more than one person.

    yes. Rockwell and Rothbard.

  89. Robert Capozzi

    99 bh, how do you scale these? Why, for ex., does GJ get a 5 on shop for health insurance?

    I could imagine that GJ believes 100% that we do have the right to do so. Perhaps he only advocates what Rothbard would call “transition” measures that are reasonably ripe and that move the current configuration in that direction.

  90. Robert Capozzi

    105 p, my monitoring of LRC shows no signs that our paleo brethren are reacting in any way to their outing.

    Has anyone seen some sort of response out of Auburn?

  91. George Phillies

    @16 That appears to be Crane attacking Rockwell, not Paul repudiating Rockwell by name. Paul is only quotes as saying that he did not read his own newsletters, and that unnamed staff persons did the writing. His did not read claim contradicts what he said in 1996 when it was not an issue.

  92. Robert Capozzi

    more…

    I’m not sure Charles Burris has been allowed into the Auburn sanctum sanctorum, but he does post this:

    http://www.lewrockwell.com/blog/lewrw/archives/102683.html

    It links a Glenn Greenwald essay that says this:

    I wish there were someone who did not have Ron Paul’s substantial baggage to achieve this. Before Paul announced his candidacy, I expressed hope in an Out Magazine profile that Gary Johnson would run for President and be the standard-bearer for these views, in the process scrambling bipartisan stasis on these questions.

    Thus far, to the extent I’ve seen any reactions from the Auburn Illuminati about NewsletterGate Part II, my recollection is that it mostly involved hand-waving charges of “smear.” Now that Paul has (elliptically) named Rothbard and Rockwell, I wonder if they will adjust their tack.

    My guess is they will ignore the truth as long as possible, hoping it blows over.

  93. Robert Capozzi

    108 gp, I see your point. I read the story as Paul elliptically naming R&R without explicitly naming them as the authors of hate.

    This passage: “Mr. Paul described Mr. Rockwell and Mr. Rothbard as political provocateurs. “They enjoyed antagonizing people, to tell you the truth, and trying to split people,” he said.”

    Is the coded “tell,” as I read it.

    This passage: “He said he did not discuss the content of the newsletters with Mr. Rockwell because readers never complained. “I was pretty careless about what was going in my own newsletter — that was my biggest fault,” he said.”

    IMPLIES that Rockwell was the actual editor, at least, and was responsible for the content.

    RP is still unwilling to put this behind him with a definitive statement. We can’t know why and what exactly happened. My read between the lines is a) Paul wasn’t paying attention; b) R&R were on a paleohater jag; c) in their minds, too much is at stake for either to ‘fess up; and d) Paul and Rockwell forget that the truth will set them free.

    That Greenwald essay links to an Andrew Sullivan blog that is on point: “One of Ron Paul’s biggest attributes is his sincerity. He doesn’t bullshit. Which is why this is so disappointing. He’s either lying, completely removed from reality, or really still believes (or at least doesn’t find offensive) everything in the vile newsletters that bear his name, save for “eight to ten sentences.” In which case he’s a bigot. These are the only three options. All of them are ugly,” – Radley Balko, libertarian icon.

  94. Robert Capozzi

    110 gp: Crane attacking Rockwell is not new.

    me: Hmm, the NYT story does say, “Mr. Crane, a longtime critic of Mr. Rockwell, called Mr. Paul’s close association with him “one of the more perplexing things I’ve ever come across in my 67 years.” He added: “I wish Ron would condemn these fringe things that float around because of Rockwell.”

    But my sense is that Crane hasn’t publicly mentioned Rockwell much over the years. Paul 08 and 12 may have, in a sense, forced his hand, since Rockwell’s history of promoting on-and-sometimes-over-the-line haterism and allied thinking (e.g., revisionism) was contained to obscure, mostly intra-LM spheres. With Paul now on the national stage and the most prominent exponent of L thought, Rockwell’s cancerous ideas could do SERIOUS, long-lasting damage to L-ism in the public square.

    Crane may be thinking “something has to be done” to inoculate our ideas from the hater-ade. Hence, his quotes here indicate that he’s taking a fine scalpel to this dysfunction, attempting to cut away the paleohate while not damaging RP.

    Tough duty.

  95. Robert Capozzi

    102 p: I would say a political party is somewhere in between the two (an ideological religion and a vote-getting machine) in this regard.

    me: I would say neither. A political party is more wind. We’re all just wind-bags blowing the ship in the direction of liberty. Those who chose to associate in an institution, a party, are blowing in more or less the same direction.

    In the process, minds are changed and votes are gotten. That is all. So far, our wind hasn’t been especially consequential on either score…

  96. Thomas L. Knapp

    RC@107,

    “Has anyone seen some sort of response out of Auburn?”

    Nope. The LRC line is still that Ron Paul was born of a virgin, walks on water and has shit that stinketh not, and that any mention of the newsletters (or for that matter any discussion of Ron Paul not composed entirely of talking points issued by his campaign) is worthy only of denunciation as a “smear.”

  97. Brian Holtz

    Why, for ex., does GJ get a 5 on shop for health insurance?

    Because it’s not mentioned on his campaign site or in any of the position quotes compiled at OnTheIssues.

  98. Thomas L. Knapp

    Paulie@100,

    “What’s unethical about changing party registration as many times as you wish? More than once a day may be impractical, but otherwise I think there is no problem whatsoever – certainly not an ethical one.”

    fraud, n. 2. An intentional perversion of truth for the purpose of obtaining some valuable thing or promise from another.

    The purpose of party registration is to determine who is a member of which party for the purpose of allowing the parties to conduct internal voting among their own membership to choose candidates.

    If you change your registration to vote in a party’s primary when you do not actually support that party, you are committing fraud — lying in order to gain something of value (a primary vote) to which you are not actually entitled.

  99. Brian Holtz

    Parties are not static. I’d support a GOP that decided to adopt Ron Paul’s principles as its own. Joining the GOP to move it in that direction would be no more fraudulent than my current efforts within the LP to nudge it towards geolibertarianism.

    Hurt me with the problem of Republicans (or Democrats) joining the LP to change it. The libertarianism I believe in is a mind-virus that tends to infect and convert would-be infiltrators.

  100. Jose C

    Andy @ 97 I’d love it if there were announcement at the LP National Convention that went like this, “Ladies and gentleman, we have a special guest today.” and then the lights went out for a few moments. Then the lights comes back on and Ron Paul is standing at the podium on the main stage. The convention hall would go wild with applause and Dr. Paul would take the LP nomination in a landslide. Then the Libertarian Party would finally move up to the big time.

    We have already done this, remember? Ron Paul was a candidate for President of the Libertarian Party and he did not do well.

    Results (votes):

    1. Ed Clark 921,128
    2. Bob Barr 823,686
    3. Harry Browne 485,759
    4. Ron Paul 431,750

    Results (electoral votes)

    1. John Hospers 1
    2. Ron Paul 0

    Out of the ten Presidential candidates we have had three received more votes than Ron Paul. One candidate received more electoral votes than Ron Paul. What makes you think Ron Paul will do better in 2012 than he did in the past? What makes you think Ron Paul will do better in 2012 then Clark, Browne, Barr, and Hospers did in 1980, 1996, 2008, and 1972? There is no evidence that Ron Paul will do better than he did in 1988 or better than Clark, Browne, or Barr have done.

  101. Thomas L. Knapp

    BH@117,

    “Joining the GOP to move it in that direction would be no more fraudulent than my current efforts within the LP to nudge it towards geolibertarianism.”

    No, it wouldn’t.

    But what was under discussion was not “joining the GOP to move it.” What was under discussion was “pretending to join the GOP in order to vote in its primary, never intending to become an actual supporter of the party, but rather intending to immediately go back to stating your true party membership as soon as your fraudulent primary vote has been cast.”

  102. George Phillies

    “I’d support a GOP that decided to adopt Ron Paul’s principles as its own. ”

    Now we know where the fellow who wrecked our platform is coming from. Paul is:

    an antiabortionist
    an opponent of gay rights
    an advocate of the “states Rights” doctrine that states should be allowed to take away gays’ right to marry, women’s right to abortion access, and — going back within my lifetime — the right of African Americans to send their children to the schools their taxes helped pay for, not to mention voting in the elections that chose the school boards that set those policies
    a global warming denier
    an evolution denier
    a Christian dominionist — listen to his interview on TheAmericanView.com
    a conspiracy theory supporter who hangs with Alex Jones
    the publisher of a vilely racist newsletter, which he admitted publishing ‘the quotes are out of context’ a vigorous earmarker, expert in shipping pork to his district, and then casting a meaningless vote against final passage.

    and those are the principles that Mr. Holtz seems to say that he supports.

  103. Jose C

    Andy @ 97 I’d love it if there were announcement at the LP National Convention that went like this, “Ladies and gentleman, we have a special guest today.” and then the lights went out for a few moments. Then the lights comes back on and Ron Paul is standing at the podium on the main stage. The convention hall would go wild with applause and Dr. Paul would take the LP nomination in a landslide. Then the Libertarian Party would finally move up to the big time.

    If this happened those in the Party will be acting in an unethical manner. I wonder what the other candidates seeking the nomination for President of the Libertarian Party would think about this? Wouldn’t this give an unfair advantage to Ron Paul? We should strive to conduct ourselves in an honorable, honest, and ethical way.

    I know this is politics but still . . .

  104. Inflated Bob Barr Numbers

    @ 118, Where do you get that Bob Barr got 823,686 votes?

    According to Wikipedia: “On November 4, 2008, Barr received 523,686 votes, 0.4% of the national vote”

    You’ve inflated Barr’s numbers by 300,000.

    Furthermore, the U.S. population was smaller in 1988 than in 2008, so Paul may actually have pulled a greater percentage of the vote than did Barr.

  105. Brian Holtz

    George, by “a GOP that decided to adopt Ron Paul’s principles” I don’t mean a cult that would make Ron Paul its infallible pope. Rather, I mean a political party that adopted the principles of Paul’s 2008 The Revolution: A Manifesto.

    I disagree with Paul’s policy principles on abortion and gay marriage. I’m a radical decentralist but I disagree with any notion of “states’ rights” that would exempt states from respecting the Bill of Rights. (For Paul’s actual views on “states’ rights” and race, see pp. 63-66 of his manifesto.) I’m a hardcore polemical atheist who is confident that Paul supports freedom of speech and religion. I’m curious how you think his personal opinions on evolution and race would manifest as public policy that libertarians should condemn.

    Your list of Paulist baggage is far from complete, as I have many other policy disgreements with him. (If you really want to know what principles I support, just read my Free Earth Manifesto.) However, I’d much rather have the problem of curing the GOP of Paul’s mistakes, instead of my current problem of curing the LP of Rothbard’s mistakes.

    Tom, I suspect that nearly all LP/GOP switch-hitters would (like me) sincerely become a GOP supporter if the GOP sincerely adopted the principles of the Paul campaign. Party registration does not involve a loyalty oath, and it’s not “fraud” to make short-term efforts to influence a party.

  106. Robert Capozzi

    125 bh, one could argue that even if it DID require a loyalty oath, such an oath could justifiably be broken. The R/D line-up is a function of dysfunctional usurpations by state and federal governments. I could make a case that all bets are off, even.

  107. Brian Holtz

    Re: @129 the fellow who wrecked our platform

    Anybody who thinks the Platform is currently “wrecked” should tell us PlatCom members what are, say, the N most important positions to add to it or remove from it. For example, should global warming or evolution be added to it?

  108. Thomas L. Knapp

    BH @125,

    Context please. That context was: “Change your registration to GOP to vote for Paul, then haul ass down to the registrar to change back to LP so it doesn’t hurt our ballot access.”

    That context has nothing to do with “sincere party-switching.” It is a the use of fraud as a tactic to gain political advantage, plain and simple.

    If 10,000 California Republicans changed their registration to Libertarian for long enough to vote for James Ogle in a binding LP primary, then switched back to GOP the next day, the LP would be screaming from the rooftops about how wrong and fraudulent that was, and how parties are entitled to control the terms of membership and voting in their internal primaries.

    But with the LP, as with all political parties, ethics is something to hang around those other guys’ necks, not something to pay much attention to practicing yourself.

  109. George Phillies

    @123

    Tom, at least see an ophthalmologist.

    However, the Times quotes from Paul are:

    “Mr. Paul said in the interview that he did not, but he declined to condemn Mr. Rockwell, saying he did not want to get in the middle of a fight. “I could understand that, but I could also understand the Rothbard group saying, Why don’t you quit talking to Cato?” he said.

    Mr. Paul described Mr. Rockwell and Mr. Rothbard as political provocateurs. “They enjoyed antagonizing people, to tell you the truth, and trying to split people,” he said. “I thought, we’re so small, why shouldn’t we be talking to everybody and bringing people together?”

    He said he did not discuss the content of the newsletters with Mr. Rockwell because readers never complained. “I was pretty careless about what was going in my own newsletter — that was my biggest fault,” he said. ”

    He disapproves of Rothbard tactics, but it is presented as a tactical disagreement, and he leaves the relation between Rothbard and the newsletters up in the air.

  110. Robert Capozzi

    129 gp, agreed, it leaves a lot up in the air.

    I would also refuse to “condemn” Rockwell, btw, just as refuse to “condemn” GP for NarcGate. Both are simply mistakes. Rockwell’s mistakes took place over a longer time frame and seem more consequential.

    I do happen to think that adults admit mistakes and move on. Denying mistakes, esp. obvious ones, only makes matters more dysfunctional.

  111. Michael H. Wilson

    re Andy @ 97 writes; “I’d love it if there were announcement at the LP National Convention that went like this, “Ladies and gentleman, we have a special guest today.” and then the lights went out for a few moments. Then the lights comes back on and Ron Paul is standing at the podium on the main stage. The convention hall would go wild with applause and Dr. Paul would take the LP nomination in a landslide. Then the Libertarian Party would finally move up to the big time.”

    Andy I have to disagree. Ron Paul is a great advocate for many Libertarian positions but he is not the be all and end all of the movement.

    He veers off track on a couple of issues. Specifically the issue of national borders is important. Paul does not support the free flow of people thus it is difficult to conclude that he supports the idea of free trade. Secondly this also suggest that he has not thought through the bias against working people that this suggests. While capital in the form of money can travel around the globe in seconds to any possible investment, human capital that which is in a person’s arms, and back is stopped at the borders.

    Some people are free to use their capital in ways that others are not.

    The rich thus get richer thanks to government intervention.

  112. Robert Capozzi

    130 mhw, do you want a plank on sprawl and another plank on transit? Are you sure?

    As for global warming, if a plank were adopted, I suspect it would be a denier stance, since my sense is most Ls are deniers. (I’m a skeptic.) Were THAT to happen, I’m concerned about GP’s reaction. I seem to recall that he believes deniers are all “idiots,” so he might decide that all Ls are “idiots,” or at least a strong majority of Ls are “idiots.”

    And THAT could get ugly…. ;-)

  113. Nominate Dr. Ron Paul to be the 2012 Libertarian Party POTUS Candidate !

    The Paul/Marrou ticket was on the ballot only in 46 states and DC. He finished third equaling Bergland/Lewis. No other LP tickets have done as well. Paul/Marrou rank 3rd all-time in percent of the vote for the LP with .0047 following Clark/Koch’s .0107 and Browne/Jorgensen at .0050

    The numbers for states, placement in the race, votes and percentage of the votes cast.

    1972 on the ballot in
    WA & CO 12.John Hosper Theodora Nathan (3,907 votes for 0.0%)

    1976- 31 states + DC 4. Roger MacBride David Bergland(174,199 votes for 0.21%)

    1980- 50 states + DC 4. Ed Clark David Koch (L) 921,199 votes for 1.07%

    1984- 40 states + DC 3. David Bergland James Lewis (L) 228,705 votes for 0.25%

    1988- 46 states + DC 3. Ronald E. “Ron” Paul Andre Marrou(L, I) 432,297 votes for 0.47%

    1992- 50 states + DC 4. André Marrou Nancy Lord (L, I) 291,654 votes for 0.27%

    1996- 50 states + DC 5. Harry Browne Joanne M. Jorgensen(L) 485,798 votes for 0.5%

    2000- 49* states + DC 5. Harry Browne Art Olivier (L) 384,431 votes for 0.36%
    50*L.Neil Smith in AZ. Neil Smith Vin Suprynowicz Libertarian 5,775 0.01%

    2004- 49 states 4. Michael Badnarik Richard V. Campagna 397,277 votes for 0.3248%,

    2008- 45 states 4. Bob Barr Wayne Allyn Root Libertarian 523,433 0.40%

    * an interesting note perhaps to some, the placement of GJ on the Nolan Chart above is very close to the location I have seen Jessie Ventura place on the chart.

    I sent a photo(s) in a group 0f photos last week attached to an email to IPR of GJ (in 2011) at a booth with a Nolan chart. He is smiling and pointing at a point on the board. I would appreciate paulie or someone who knows how to upload photos to this site to please upload both GJ related photos to one of the GJ threads. THX

    @118 “What makes you think Ron Paul will do better in 2012 than he did in the past? What makes you think Ron Paul will do better in 2012 then Clark, Browne, Barr, and Hospers did in 1980, 1996, 2008, and 1972? There is no evidence that Ron Paul will do better than he did in 1988 or better than Clark, Browne, or Barr have done.”

    To be perfectly honest with you Jose about 50 million reasons. That is $50 million worth of political action. Go to Facebook and see how many Pages of Groups are related to Ron Paul. It is shocking to me how much larger the movement is this time than last time. No matter how much you disagree, the fact is Paul DOES land in the LP quad on the above chart.

    The thing you want from a “celeb” or popular candidate is to BUILD YOUR LOCAL LP. Dr,Paul would bring in numbers in boots and cash. Both much needed. USE the POTUS race to BUILD your local LP. Most will agree the Paul R run has caused many to abandan the LP. If he came back as the general election nom. he would bring back most if not all who have left and even some new people. The LP (you members) needs to get them ACTIVE in the (your) local LP all over the U.S.

    Dr.Paul’s campaign will have spent millions of $ on advertising even BEFORE the LP convention.

    Ron Paul – “The one who can beat Obama” – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pChzOaIeyxY&feature=endscreen&NR=1

    Ron Paul Ad – He Served – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AW08qK0GhHs&feature=player_embedded

    Ron Paul 2012 “The High Tide” HD – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lhyaiOZhpSg&feature=endscreen&NR=1

    Ron Paul Conviction Ad – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UUNIeOB0whI&feature=endscreen&NR=1

    I personally would like to see the LP get over one million votes sometime before I die. How bout you ?

    PAUL/JOHNSON ’12

  114. Nominate Dr. Ron Paul to be the 2012 Libertarian Party POTUS Candidate !

    Fifty Million Dollars of libertarian political activity over the past five years SHOULD NOT be squandered !

    Ron Paul and Israel: Respect, Commerce and Honest Friendship – http://www.ronpaul2012.com/2011/12/29/ron-paul-and-israel-respect-commerce-and-honest-friendship/

    Busted! OMG! OMG! Ron Paul racist rant caught on tape-NOT! – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i3EADdr-5AY&feature=share

    Ron Paul 2012 “The High Tide” HD – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lhyaiOZhpSg&feature=endscreen&NR=1

    GOP will take off the gloves if Ron Paul wins Iowa – http://campaign2012.washingtonexaminer.com/article/gop-will-take-gloves-if-ron-paul-wins-iowa/264111

    PAUL/JOHNSON ’12

    or

    PAUL/VENTURA ’12

    Time to become a real PLAYA….

  115. Jose C

    @ 134
    Ed Clark 921,128
    Ron Paul 431,750

    Ed Clark 489,378 more votes than Ron Paul.

    Bob Barr 523,433
    Ron Paul 431,750

    Bob Barr 91,683 more votes than Ron Paul.

    Harry Browne 485,759
    Ron Paul 431,750

    Harry Browne 54,009 more votes than Ron. Paul.

  116. Thomas L. Knapp

    Jose C @137

    Bob Barr 523,433 votes out of 131.2 million cast.

    Ron Paul 431,750 votes out of 91.5 million cast.

    For Barr to have done as well as Paul, he’d have had to have knocked down around 619,000 votes.

  117. paulie

    my monitoring of LRC shows no signs that our paleo brethren are reacting in any way to their outing.

    Has anyone seen some sort of response out of Auburn?

    Haven’t read LRC that recently, maybe someone else can be of more help.

  118. Brian Holtz

    If a candidate in a binding LP primary were polling among the top 2 or 3 candidates, and his sincere supporters from another party switched to the LP and tipped the race his way, I wouldn’t complain.

    Maybe the questions for switch-hitters are: 1) Would you support Ron Paul over an LP nominee if Paul were (on track to be) the GOP nominee? 2) Would you be willing to work within the GOP if Ron Paul took it over?

  119. paulie

    GP 108 …

    Mr. Crane, a longtime critic of Mr. Rockwell, called Mr. Paul’s close association with him “one of the more perplexing things I’ve ever come across in my 67 years.” He added: “I wish Ron would condemn these fringe things that float around because of Rockwell. I don’t believe he believes any of that stuff.”

    Mr. Paul said in the interview that he did not, but he declined to condemn Mr. Rockwell, saying he did not want to get in the middle of a fight. “I could understand that, but I could also understand the Rothbard group saying, Why don’t you quit talking to Cato?” he said.

    Mr. Paul described Mr. Rockwell and Mr. Rothbard as political provocateurs. “They enjoyed antagonizing people, to tell you the truth, and trying to split people,” he said. “I thought, we’re so small, why shouldn’t we be talking to everybody and bringing people together?”

  120. paulie

    Rockwell’s cancerous ideas could do SERIOUS, long-lasting damage to L-ism in the public square.

    I have not seen anything like that at LRC in recent years.

    If they were ever Rockwell’s true beliefs, rather than part of a misguided attempt to appeal to reactionary nationalists, he’s either changed his views or become “politically correct” – and he does not strike me as being politically correct.

    Also, I lived in Auburn at one time and attended a number of events at the Mises Institute. I did not closely associate with Rockwell, but the times I did he never said anything racist in my presence. People I know who knew Hoppe a lot better than me have told me that he is in fact racist (without any specific examples however), and I once heard Jeff Tucker say he went coon hunting that weekend with a mischievous glint in his eye – although I’m 99 point something percent sure he meant racoons, I think he enjoyed the double entendre a bit too much. That is in fact the only time I personally heard anyone at LvMI say anything like that, and I may have read something into it that was not actually there.

  121. paulie

    TLK

    The purpose of party registration is to determine who is a member of which party for the purpose of allowing the parties to conduct internal voting among their own membership to choose candidates.

    How long must that membership last?

    If I have a stake in deciding who the Republicans want to nominate I can “join” them (in a fashion) to help make that decision, then revoke membership as soon as the decision is made.

    Many states do not limit primaries to voters registered with that party. In some states independents (who outnumber Democrats or Republicans and are growing faster than either) can choose which primary to vote in. Some states don’t even have registration by party, for example Alabama. All voters are registered nonpartisan and choose whichever primary ballot they prefer at any given election.

    Just because some states (but not others) have registration by party, and just because some states (but not others) limit government financed primaries for government office to people registered to vote with that party, does not make serial party switching to vote in a primary fraud.

    It is legal in every state that I know of.

    Fraud would include things like purposely being registered in multiple states and/or multiple addresses and/or multiple parties and voting more than once.

    Serial party switching is not fraud, not illegal, and IMO not in any way unethical.

  122. Michael H. Wilson

    At 133 Capozzi ask ”130 mhw, do you want a plank on sprawl and another plank on transit? Are you sure?”

    Yes they are two separate but related issues. I would imagine that most Libertarian candidates are running at the local/state level and both issues are important that we address. Regarding transit we should point out that historically it has not been a government function and only since the mid 1960s has the government run so much of it. I’ll stick a piece at the bottom of this on transit. It is a bit old but still useable

    Sprawl is a problem that has been caused by government housing regulations, tax policies and transportation regulations. It is also a result of the changes in technology and human desire. The LP should not be shy about pointing this out. I tend to follow the work of Edward Glaeser on urban issues and here is one paper he co-authored http://people.missouristate.edu/davidmitchell/Urban/Sprawl%20and%20Urban%20Growth.pdf. We should point out that there are both good and bad points to sprawl and work with both sides of the issue.

    ”As for global warming, if a plank were adopted, I suspect it would be a denier stance, since my sense is most Ls are deniers. (I’m a skeptic.)”
    We should point out that there are strong opinion on each side, but regardless the LP is willing and proud to promote ideas that while they may lead to a free market they may also help to mitigate the situation. Open up the transportation market and reducing the U.S. military’s global role.

    Here’s the transit piece I mentioned. It is a brochure and may not read as well here as it does as a trifold. Maybe people can make sense of it. Some of it is in bold print other parts are not. I don’t know the html tags for making type bold, so use you imagination. ;)

    February 6th 1915 issue of the Electric Railway Journal reported that 518 Seattle jitney buses “are carrying 49,000 passengers daily…”

    Opening the inner city transit market to private bus companies, jitneys, and ride sharing taxis regardless of whether they are corporations or mom and pop part-time businesses will provide other alternatives to the private car and help reduce consumption of fossil fuels resulting in cleaner air, a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, slow the development of farm land, reduce city street congestion, save tax dollars and most importantly improve the lives of low income people while reducing the social problems associated with poverty.

    Who Benefits from expanding transit services by opening the marketplace?
    “The lack of personal mobility has economic, social and human costs, such as higher unemployment, reduced tax revenue, greater welfare and medical costs, and limited social potential.”
    • “Almost half of those without an automobile are persons 65 years or older, and of these, 81% are women.”
    • “…23% of full-time working mothers and almost 60% of part-time working mothers have non-traditional work hours. This reduces women’s ability to join carpools or find appropriately-scheduled transit options.”
    • “…nearly 40% of central city African-American households were without access to an automobile, compared to fewer than one of out five white central city households.”
    Source: Using Public Transportation to Reduce the Economic, Social, and Human Costs of personal Immobility National Academy Press

    A Brief History: The transit industry is one of the most heavily regulated in the nation. In many cities it is almost impossible for you to own a transportation business because of the rules.

    Private cars called jitneys whose owners offered to carry passengers for a fee in the 1900s were the first victims of laws that were passed to protect the streetcars when jitneys began to appear on the streets about 1915. By the mid 1920s most cities had outlawed jitneys to protect the streetcar businesses which were owned by the electric utility companies.

    Streetcars had been in decline for a number of years then in 1935 Congress passed the Public Utilities Holding Act that required the streetcar companies to be sold off from the electric companies that owned them. This led to the collapse of the streetcar business. The Supreme Court upheld the 1935 Public Utilities Holding Act in a 1946 decision known as North American Company v Security Exchange Commission.

    In 1964 Congress passed laws that spurred the development of government operated local transit agencies.
    Transportation Alternatives:
    In the 1980s most of the public transit in England was turned over to private companies.

    Helsinki, Finland: Fourteen private companies now operate much of the region’s bus service through competitive bidding. A 30% reduction in operating costs and a saving in subsidies has been achieved. Fares have been reduced by 12% and services expanded.

    Stockholm, Sweden: In 1993 Stockholm began using private contractors to run their bus and rail system. Savings of nearly $150 million annually and reduced subsidies have been two improvements along with increased farebox revenue and more riders. Approximately 70% of the region’s bus service has been contracted out.

    Copenhagen, Denmark: Similar results have been seen in Copenhagen where contracting out has been mandated by the Danish parliament.

    Curitiba, Brazil: This transit system has been called one of the world’s best. With neighborhood circulators, intermediate services and express buses, all color coded, run by 16 private companies and overseen by a government agency this unsubsidized system is being copied by cities in other countries. With approximately 75% of the region’s 2.3 million daily commuters using the system, Curitiba sets an example of what can be done to build a modern effective service for a fraction of the cost when there is a willingness to innovate. Curitiba uses 25-30% less fuel then comparable cities which reduces air pollution giving Curitiba some of the cleanest air of any Brazilian city.

    Comments, criticism and abuse are all expected so fire away.
    END

  123. paulie

    We have already done this, remember? Ron Paul was a candidate for President of the Libertarian Party and he did not do well.

    Results (votes):

    1. Ed Clark 921,128
    2. Bob Barr 823,686
    3. Harry Browne 485,759
    4. Ron Paul 431,750

    Results (electoral votes)

    1. John Hospers 1
    2. Ron Paul 0

    Notwithstanding that your numbers for Barr are way off, Ron Paul is much better known in 2012 than he was in 1988. It’s not even close to being a valid comparison.

    Out of the ten Presidential candidates we have had three received more votes than Ron Paul. One candidate received more electoral votes than Ron Paul.

    Only two have done better in percentage terms, not that this is pertinent in any way, as Ron Paul nowadays has
    a much bigger following.

    What makes you think Ron Paul will do better in 2012 than he did in the past? What makes you think Ron Paul will do better in 2012 then Clark, Browne, Barr, and Hospers did in 1980, 1996, 2008, and 1972? There is no evidence that Ron Paul will do better than he did in 1988 or better than Clark, Browne, or Barr have done.

    What was Ron Paul’s name recognition in 1988 as opposed to now? How many people had ever given him money then, as opposed to now, or volunteered on his behalf? Etc.

    Compare his name recognition and support base to that of the other candidates you name at the time they ran.

  124. paulie

    But what was under discussion was not “joining the GOP to move it.

    I disagree.

    Joining temporarily and with a specific purpose does not mean not joining.

  125. Darryl W. Perry

    In 2008, Ron Paul received 1,163,078 GOP Primary votes and 44,003 GOP Caucus votes.

    He was also on the ballot in Louisiana & Montana and a certified write-in in California and received 47,507 votes in the general election, and did not campaign for the general election!

  126. paulie

    JC 122,

    There is nothing unethical about a candidate jumping into the race at the convention.

    The delegates would decide whether such a candidate merits their votes.

    In Ron Paul’s case I predict they would.

    In Ventura’s case, maybe.

    Most other would-be candidates would be better advised to do some prep work ahead of time.

    However, I do not see it as a matter of ethics either way.

  127. paulie

    If 10,000 California Republicans changed their registration to Libertarian for long enough to vote for James Ogle in a binding LP primary, then switched back to GOP the next day, the LP would be screaming from the rooftops about how wrong and fraudulent that was, and how parties are entitled to control the terms of membership and voting in their internal primaries.

    And that is exactly why the LP wisely does NOT have binding government primaries.

    If it did, it should be prepared to accept those consequences.

    IMO there would be nothing unethical on the part of the 10,000 once and future Republicans in your hypothetical example; they would simply be taking advantage of the LP’s stupidity in subjecting itself to such a system.

  128. paulie

    he leaves the relation between Rothbard and the newsletters up in the air.

    What? His quotes are predicated on acknowledging the authorship.

    Other parts of the article (they may have been on pages 1 and 2, not page 3 which was the direct link) say he did not and does not agree with the quotes from the newsletters that have been the subject of controversy.

  129. Darryl W. Perry

    2008 California
    Bob Barr 67,582 (0.50%)
    Ron Paul (write-in) 17,006 (0.13%)

    2008 Louisiana
    Ron Paul 9,368 (0.48%)
    Barr was not on the Louisiana ballot

    2008 Montana
    Ron Paul 10,669 (2.17%)
    Bob Barr 1,358 (0.28%)

  130. paulie

    MHW

    Ron Paul is a great advocate for many Libertarian positions but he is not the be all and end all of the movement.

    He veers off track on a couple of issues. Specifically the issue of national borders is important. Paul does not support the free flow of people thus it is difficult to conclude that he supports the idea of free trade. Secondly this also suggest that he has not thought through the bias against working people that this suggests. While capital in the form of money can travel around the globe in seconds to any possible investment, human capital that which is in a person’s arms, and back is stopped at the borders.

    Some people are free to use their capital in ways that others are not.

    The rich thus get richer thanks to government intervention.

    I agree with you.

    However, there are other factors to consider, such as whether Paul’s name recognition and fundraising/volunteer base is more than enough to offset what policy issues exist.

    I suspect most delegates would say it is, with relatively few exceptions.

    In Johnson’s case it is less clear – since the name recognition and fundraising/volunteer base is much less than Paul’s – whether it is enough to overcome differences on policy questions like the “fair” tax, Guantanamo Bay and a few others. However, given the current field, I’d still say most delegates will probably say it is.

  131. paulie

    I sent a photo(s) in a group 0f photos last week attached to an email to IPR of GJ (in 2011) at a booth with a Nolan chart. He is smiling and pointing at a point on the board. I would appreciate paulie or someone who knows how to upload photos to this site to please upload both GJ related photos to one of the GJ threads. THX

    Try sending it again.

    I get hundreds of emails every day and I don’t recall that one.

  132. paulie

    Maybe the questions for switch-hitters are: 1) Would you support Ron Paul over an LP nominee if Paul were (on track to be) the GOP nominee? 2) Would you be willing to work within the GOP if Ron Paul took it over?

    I strongly suspect almost all of them would say yes.

  133. paulie

    Wait, are there 10,000 people – let alone Republicans – that want to vote for Ogle?

    LOL, no.

    But I understand what Tom meant by that example.

  134. paulie

    “Serial party switching is not fraud, not illegal, and IMO not in any way unethical.”

    Right. Because ethics is for other people.

    No, because it is simply not unethical.

  135. paulie

    I just found the figures to be rather humorous.

    It is conceivable that IF the LP was dumb enough to have binding government primaries and IF it was a big enough threat for Republicans to really work extraordinarily hard to make it happen, 10k Republicans would switch temporarily to the LP to make the LP nominate a really embarrassing candidate.

    In the real world, the LP manages to do it without all that hard work by Republican operatives.

  136. Darryl W. Perry

    In the real world, the LP manages to do it without all that hard work by Republican operatives.

    You mean, by having LNC members openly recruit GOP nominees to switch parties?

  137. paulie

    You mean, by having LNC members openly recruit GOP nominees to switch parties?

    The examples of embarrassing LP candidates are legion. Some, but not all, of those have Republican inclinations.

  138. George Phillies

    @162 In Massachusetts, if we had “political party” status instead of ballot access, it would be quite easy for Republicans or Democrats to play games with Libertarian Party ballot positions. Because we are instead a “political designation” our petitioning is much easier and the D and R parties cannot use this attack route.

    I still have seen no sign of a credible route that would generate Libertarian Presidential ballot access in Massachusetts.

  139. paulie

    TLK

    If I believed serial party switching to be unethical, it would be equally unethical for everyone. Because ethics is for other people in no way represents my view of the matter. Nor does it represent my beliefs.

    It is certainly true that I haven’t always behaved ethically or legally – that’s a matter of public record. But despite my own failings, I do in fact consider ethics to be important. If I believed serial party switching was in some way morally wrong, I would not advise people to do it.

    I do not believe it is morally wrong for anyone to switch party registration as often as they wish and for whatever purpose they wish.

    That is a general rule, and I can think of no exceptions.

    There is no sense in which ethics is for other people is my position on this or any other issue.

  140. paulie

    In Massachusetts, if we had “political party” status instead of ballot access, it would be quite easy for Republicans or Democrats to play games with Libertarian Party ballot positions.

    Please explain. How so? You would have binding government primary nominations?

    If so, that’s one good reason to prefer political designation status, among others you’ve cited.

    I still have seen no sign of a credible route that would generate Libertarian Presidential ballot access in Massachusetts.

    I still haven’t seen the cost projections.

  141. citizen1

    Someone should ask GJ to clarify what he meant. In some states your involvement in a party is not effected by your registration at least as far as the state is concerned. Some states do not have party registration. Others, it is possible to be involved in one party even an officer in it while registered with another party, though party rules may prohibit this the state doesn’t. So, there is probably a large percentage of GJ supporters that can vote or RP in the primary. At least all of those who were planning on voting or GJ in the primary can vote for RP.

  142. George Phillies

    @167 The LNC plans to spend about $25,000 in MA in ballot access, same as last time, but changes in petitioning and other costs and other changes in available resources indicate that $35,000-$40,000 will be needed.

    Yes, we have primary elections for partisan office, so that the parties belong to their voters, not to a few corrupt political bosses.

  143. paulie

    The LNC plans to spend about $25,000 in MA in ballot access,

    For 10k valid that is indeed rather low. It would only work if it could be piggybacked off other parties in a stack.

    The other thing that might make it work is if it is supplemented by the presidential campaign.

  144. paulie

    Also, there could be an additional allocation during the course of the drive.

    I don’t think the LNC would let a state the size of Mass fall through the cracks; my experience so far is that this cycle is being managed more effectively than the last one. We’ll see how it goes when it gets closer to crunch time with multiple states going simultaneously.

  145. Root's Teeth Are Awesome

    @ 153

    2008 California
    Bob Barr 67,582 (0.50%)
    Ron Paul (write-in) 17,006 (0.13%)

    2008 Louisiana
    Ron Paul 9,368 (0.48%)
    Barr was not on the Louisiana ballot

    And Paul was not “on the ballot” in California.

    Had Paul been on the ballot (as opposed to being a certified write-in candidate, which only the hardest core political junkies knew about), Paul would have trounced Barr.

    2008 Montana
    Ron Paul 10,669 (2.17%)
    Bob Barr 1,358 (0.28%)

    Yup. On a level playing field, Paul beat Barr.

    This, despite the fact that Barr campaigned for votes, while Paul asked people not to vote for him, but to instead vote for Baldwin.

  146. Humongous Fungus

    Interesting how much Rockwell’s tone has changed since 1990….

    http://reason.com/blog/2011/12/29/ron-pauls-march-1990-reaction-to-the-pal

    ….still equally acerbic though, in contrast to the much calmer and friendlier consensus-builder Ron Paul.

    Rockwell, Rothbard, Paul and co. have always been at their best when building alliances with the New Left (circa late 60s/early 70s) and the 2000s antiwar, anti-police state, anti-corporatist
    left….and at their worst when building alliances with the likes of Strom Thurmond, Pat Buchanan, Samuel Francis, Jared Taylor, David Duke, et al.

    And Paul’s style has always been better than Rothbard, Rockwell and Raimondo’s.

  147. George Phillies

    @170

    Donor support for Presidential campaigns is fairly thin on the ground. Johnson as a Republican has raised a lot more, but he also ran up a quarter million in debt excess to capital doing so. I gather he is staging a money bomb at the moment, and its success relative to Paul’s money bombs will tell you at least vaguely what his fundraising capacity is. If he brings in five million or something similar, well, he will be raising money roughly at Paul’s level, give or take. (There is some need for caution; some donors will give and fail to realize that his statement that he is leaving the Republican Party to run as a Libertarian means that he is no longer running for the Republican nomination.)

  148. George Phillies

    “His quotes are predicated on acknowledging the authorship. ” It appears to me that he dodges the issue of actual authorship. His condemnation of R&R is based on their confrontational style — the style very fluently advocated by our new national director — not on their content.

  149. Humongous Fungus

    @175

    Clearly Johnson isn’t raising anything like the money that Paul is raising, nor is he likely to be anywhere in the same league.

    However, he is doing well compared to LP candidates four months before the nomination in 2008 or (iirc) 2004, excluding self-financing.

    $40k plus in five days is pretty good by LP standards.

    Even if Johnson does only about as well as Barr or post-nomination Badnarik at raising money, he’ll certainly easily be able to spare something on the order of tens of thousands of dollars for ballot access.

    That presumes Johnson will be the nominee, which seems to be the most likely scenario at this point. However, if Wrights or Harris is the nominee they should still be able to fundraise somewhere in the general vicinity of Badnarik post-nom 2004.

    And, it’s possible that Paul or Ventura could seek the LP nomination. Paul’s fundraising ability is already known; Ventura’s may be better than Johnson’s, although that is not necessarily as clear.

  150. Humongous Fungus

    It appears to me that he dodges the issue of actual authorship.

    Seemed pretty clear from context.

    His condemnation of R&R is based on their confrontational style — the style very fluently advocated by our new national director — not on their content.

    Page 1 of the article:

    ““I wouldn’t be happy with that,” Mr. Paul said in an interview Friday when asked about getting help from volunteers with anti-Jewish or antiblack views.”

    Page 2:

    “Mr. Paul has long repudiated the newsletters, contending that they were written by the staff of his company, Ron Paul & Associates, while he was tending to his obstetrician’s practice and that he did not see some of them until 10 years later. “I disavow those positions,” he said in the interview. “They’re not my positions, and anybody who knows me, they’ve never heard a word of it.” ”

    and:

    “During that nominating battle, a flier produced by Mr. Paul’s opponents accused him of gay-baiting by reporting in one of his newsletters that the government was “lying” about the threat of AIDS and that the virus could be transmitted through “saliva, tears, sweat.” It said that some “AIDS carriers — perhaps out of a pathological hatred — continue to give blood.”

    Mr. Paul said Friday “that was never my view at all,” and again blamed his staff. ”

    I would say he quite obviously condemns both the style and the content, and is absolutely correct on both counts.

  151. Humongous Fungus

    George Phillies @175

    “Johnson as a Republican has raised a lot more, but he also ran up a quarter million in debt excess to capital doing so.”

    Actually from what I have gathered he pre-spent matching funds prior to their being deposited.

    On paper it looks like running up debt. However, since matching funds are reliable income, it isn’t exactly a gamble.

  152. Robert Capozzi

    142 p: If they were ever Rockwell’s true beliefs, rather than part of a misguided attempt to appeal to reactionary nationalists, he’s either changed his views or become “politically correct” – and he does not strike me as being politically correct.

    me: To clarify, I was mostly referring to Rockwell’s cancerous ideas contained in RP Newsletters back in the day. I see no reason to believe that Rockwell himself hasn’t veered away from his 90s approach of veiled and not-so-veiled bigotry. Some of the LRC crowd have been known to veer back toward hate…Bob Wallace comes to mind.

    In context, the LRC crowd’s fixation on revisionism and secession probably continues to attract haters. While not all those who advocate revisionism and secession are bigots, many bigots DO advocate those approaches. LRCers seem too comfortable with the overlap still, as I see no evidence that they appreciate or otherwise distance their approach from that of the hater community.

    152 p: What? His quotes are predicated on acknowledging the authorship.

    me: As a service to us, please lay this out more explicitly. Make the case that RP acknowledges who wrote the hate.

    The story IMPLIES it, as I see it, but here’s the narrative I’d like to see from RP: a) I just wasn’t paying attention to that business. b) I certainly didn’t write the offensive stuff. In fact, I only occasionally wrote or suggested topics. I trusted Rockwell and staff to handle that. c) That turned out to be a mistake. But the truth is I didn’t even know about the offensive stuff until years later, when I stopped my medical practice to run for Congress again. d) I do know that Rockwell was in charge of content, but I repeat that I am morally responsible for it, since it has my name on it. Frankly, I am mortified that such hateful things went out under my name, as then and now, I find that stuff despicable. That this stuff has distracted from my campaign’s message of liberty, peace and respect for all people is very disappointing, so I’d like to set the record straight once and for all. e) I have asked those who were involved in the putting the Newsletter together, and no one owns up to it, including Mr. Rockwell. It would be easy for me to speculate about who wrote what, but the truth is that it would be wrong for me to assign guilt without proof. I believe in the Golden Rule, and I am not going to judge others, especially if I don’t have proof. That would be reckless and wrong-headed.

  153. Humongous Fungus

    Capozzi @180

    “Some of the LRC crowd have been known to veer back toward hate…Bob Wallace comes to mind.”

    Yes, and he was kicked off LRC and even had his old articles removed shortly after that, or am I remembering that wrong?

    @ your concluding paragraph (longer than I care to quote):

    That seems to me to be exactly what Paul is saying.

    In any case, I would suggest that the rest of the Republican field, along with president Obama, support policies such as wars overseas, war on drugs AKA police-prison-industrial complex, corporate bailouts and manipulation of the money supply that have massive consequences that exacerbate racial disparities in the US and in the world.

    It’s certainly unfortunate that the only hobbit to get so close to climbing Mt. Doom as Ron Paul has would have even a tangential connection to such vile spew as was in the newsletters.

    However, the overfocus on the newsletters distracts from the greater truth that all the other “serious” contenders in the horserace back policies with far greater negative consequences for non-caucasoids than some 15 year old newsletter ravings.

    I’d suggest that Ron Paul should always bring the focus back to those policies which the other candidates espouse, which are killing and destroying the lives of people, especially but not only those society generally defines as not being “white.”

  154. Robert Capozzi

    HF, Yes, Wallace was banned, which was wise. The point is that LR has attracted haters over time, but he seems to’ve learned how to draw the line better, to create plausible deniability. I can’t know if he hates in his heart -now or in the 90s- but I’d say he has not done a crisp enough job in distancing himself from haters.

    And, yes, the narrative I suggest for RP is my tightening up of what he’s said. I think he needs to be more explicit

  155. George Phillies

    @177

    However—and his January FEC reports will reveal — Johnson will receive a dollop of cash from his LP supporters when he converts. Barr did when he announced, too, I expect in some part from the same people. However, comparing the money bombs will let you estimate how much Johnson will raise relative to Paul and thus roughly what Johnson may raise.

    On the other hand, his eligibility for matching funds just croaked. To be precise, he is now under the rules for Libertarian rather than Republican or Democratic candidates, which — my recollection is of the 2008 rules — are likely to require repayment. It actually gets considerably worse. I read the rules rather carefully in 2007 and 2008; it allowed to me to explain to people that for a Libertarian to take matching funds was brain-dead, unless you could have self-funded anyhow. I have no idea if the rules were written to include the possibility that someone would switch parties in mid-stream; special cases like this are sometimes forgotten.

    tens of thousands for ballot access–forgive me for not being impressed with the number you quote.

  156. Thomas L. Knapp

    @178,

    “I would say he quite obviously condemns both the style and the content, and is absolutely correct on both counts.”

    Well, yes, he condemns them now, when they’re hurting his campaign. Who wouldn’t?

    But he didn’t bother to condemn them when they were knocking down hundreds of thousands of dollars in personal income for him and building the fundraising mailing lists he used to get back into Congress.

    I wonder why.

  157. Humongous Fungus

    tens of thousands for ballot access–forgive me for not being impressed with the number you quote.

    I believe the original context was your prediction that ballot access would fail in Mass, was it not?

    Several suggestions were offered: one, that the price per sig may be lower than you might expect; two, that the LNC would add more money midstream; three, if there was an emergency and all that failed, that the presidential ticket would kick in money. Johnson’s campaign is only one of several that may conceivably do that, but are you saying that it will take a hundred thousand dollars or more to complete? I don’t see any way that it would.

    I wonder why.

    For the very reasons you state; they were knocking down hundreds of thousands of dollars in personal income for him and building the fundraising mailing lists he used to get back into Congress. That, and his misguided loyalty to his friends and belief in their strategic wisdom.

    From the Times article, he seemed only to condemn the style.

    Read or re-read comment 178.

    In case it is too long, “I disavow those positions,” he said in the interview. “They’re not my positions, and anybody who knows me, they’ve never heard a word of it.”

    More @ 178.

  158. donlake@localnet.com

    GP 108 … … … Mr. Crane, a longtime critic of Mr. Rockwell, called Mr. Paul’s close association with him “one of the more perplexing things I’ve ever come across in my 67 years.” He added: “I wish Ron would condemn these fringe things that float around because of Rockwell. I don’t believe he believes any of that stuff.”

    Don Lake: and what says Mister Crane on the open seas murders and injuries of American Sailors on the non combatant USS Liberty by IDF elements ????? Rockwell has called it a shameful chapter time and time again.

  159. JT

    Paulie: “However, there are other factors to consider, such as whether Paul’s name recognition and fundraising/volunteer base is more than enough to offset what policy issues exist.

    I suspect most delegates would say it is, with relatively few exceptions.

    In Johnson’s case it is less clear – since the name recognition and fundraising/volunteer base is much less than Paul’s – whether it is enough to overcome differences on policy questions like the “fair” tax, Guantanamo Bay and a few others. However, given the current field, I’d still say most delegates will probably say it is.”

    I fall into that category in both cases. I don’t consider a divergence from the LP Platform on a few issues to be a deal breaker. Both candidates clearly advocate many specific, dramatic reductions in the size and scope of the federal government. I don’t think it’s difficult for anyone who’s aware of them to see a big difference between RP or GJ and Obama or Romney or Gingrich.

    But aside from their wider name recognition and support base, I also want to vote for a candidate for President who has accomplished more than the average person. It’s embarrassing to me to have the top candidate of all 50 state parties (or almost all 50) be just some LP activist who happens to agree with the Platform in its entirety.

  160. Robert Capozzi

    186 gp: …his supporter-readers had no complaint about the content.

    me: I’m sure we all want to get this story straight. This: “He said he did not discuss the content of the newsletters with Mr. Rockwell because readers never complained,” is not a direct quote, but rather the characterization by JIM RUTENBERG and SERGE F. KOVALESKI, the NYT reporters. Readers may or may not have complained, but apparently Paul himself never got negative feedback. If Rockwell was the editor-in-fact and Paul was a figurehead, I suspect any complaints would also not be red-flagged up to Paul.

    We should also not be surprised if many of the readers LIKED the hate. R&R’s strategy appears to’ve been to play to paleos, some of whom were and are haters. Mailing to SPOTLIGHT readers is an indication that that was a target market for them.

  161. Robert Capozzi

    189 jt: …whether it is enough to overcome differences on policy questions like the “fair” tax, Guantanamo Bay and a few others.

    me: Fair tax I can see. Gitmo…OK, what’s to be done? Mistake was made…now what? Let everyone there go? All the “enemy combatants”? Really?

  162. JT

    Capozzi: “me: Fair tax I can see. Gitmo…OK, what’s to be done? Mistake was made…now what? Let everyone there go? All the “enemy combatants”? Really?”

    I disagree with Johnson’s position on Gitmo, as I suspect most Libertarians do. But as much as I disagree with that, it’s not going to prevent me from supporting him. That was my only point. I wasn’t addressing arguments for or against particular government policies, and I don’t want to be diverted to that right now. I’d rather stick to what I was saying.

  163. Thomas L. Knapp

    RC@191,

    “Gitmo…OK, what’s to be done? Mistake was made…now what? Let everyone there go? All the ‘enemy combatants’? Really?”

    Either that or charge them with crimes and try those charges.

  164. Gene Berkman

    HF quotes the NYT article – “During that nominating battle, a flier produced by Mr. Paul’s opponents accused him of gay-baiting by reporting in one of his newsletters that the government was “lying” about the threat of AIDS and that the virus could be transmitted through “saliva, tears, sweat.” It said that some “AIDS carriers — perhaps out of a pathological hatred — continue to give blood.”

    The anti-Ron Paul flyer in question was produced by the short-lived Libertarian Republican Organizing Committee. The leadership of LROC is now the same group that runs antiwar.com and they are all enthusiastic Ron Paul supporters now.

  165. George Phillies

    187 Paul only condemned the style of ROthbard and Rockwell. He did not condemn them for their positions.

    He did disavow the newsletter positions, can repeat his claim of the current cycle that he did not know about or write them.

    However, your quote is not an attack on Rothbard and Rockwell for their positions on issues. Paul did not do what you claimed.

  166. paulie

    Gitmo…OK, what’s to be done? Mistake was made…now what? Let everyone there go? All the “enemy combatants”? Really?

    Civilian trials. Indefinite detention without charges or other normal rights of defendants is unconscionable, as is torture. Military tribunals are not acceptable in a free society. The idea that the detainees are too dangerous to be in US maximum security prisons is ridiculous.

  167. paulie

    GP and RC,

    I find it odd how we’ve read the same article, written it what appears to me to be plain English of the standard US dialect, and come to such different conclusions about what it means.

    I’ll have to excuse myself as I’ve reached the limit of my ability to parse words. That Tom Knapp, who has been quite critical of Ron Paul’s role in the newsletter saga, apparently agrees with my interpretation, gives me confidence that it’s not my lack of reading comprehension or my mental instability acting up, and that I am not experiencing a hallucinogenic flashback.

  168. Robert Capozzi

    197 p: Civilian trials. Indefinite detention without charges or other normal rights of defendants is unconscionable, as is torture. Military tribunals are not acceptable in a free society.

    me: Hmm, except that the detainees weren’t Mirandized. Military tribunals may not be acceptable FOR YOU, and I respect that. The question is are they acceptable for the military for most onlookers. I’d hazard a guess and say yes. Like AGW, I don’t have a position on Gitmo.

  169. Thomas L. Knapp

    @199,

    “Hmm, except that the detainees weren’t Mirandized. ”

    So? That doesn’t mean they can’t have civilian trials. It just means that any testimony they gave while being illegally held will be inadmissible.

    “Military tribunals may not be acceptable FOR YOU, and I respect that. The question is are they acceptable for the military for most onlookers. I’d hazard a guess and say yes.”

    Too bad you weren’t at Nuremberg. Goering would have ended up with a daytime talk show instead of offing himself while awaiting the rope.

  170. Robert Capozzi

    200 tk: Too bad you weren’t at Nuremberg. Goering would have ended up with a daytime talk show instead of offing himself while awaiting the rope.

    me: Sorry, this is too cryptic for me.

    In your mind, TK, there might be a 100% codified rulebook for how the Gitmo prisoners should be treated. Last time I checked, BHO’s admin wanted to go civilian, and that’s not been working out so well. It appears to be complicated. GJ’s position certainly strikes me as reasonable:

    “Individuals detained by the U.S., whether it be at Guantanamo Bay or elsewhere, must be given due process via the courts or military tribunals, and must not be held indefinitely without regard to those fundamental processes.”

    Paulie seems to believe that that position is “not acceptable in a free society.” He will now have to deal with just how unacceptable GJ’s position is to him when deciding whether he will support GJ or not, as will the LP in convention.

    As of now, my take is that GJ stands the greatest likelihood of being the best actor for the role of “L prez candidate.” Some who don’t seem hellbent on branding him “Gitmo Gary” as a means to undermine Johnson ‘12. I trust that the undecideds will consider GJ’s position in context and conclude like JT that even if one disagrees with GJ on Gitmo, such a position is not a deal breaker.

    Or, Max Headroom is still available…. ;-)

    198 p, yes, I’m surprised that you and TK read the article as being definitive. I would need to see an actual quote, not inferences or quotes predicated on acknowledging the authorship, since that involves the judgment of the reporters.

    This story is getting closer to healing NewsletterGate.

  171. Robert Capozzi

    more…

    On 1/1/12, RP said this: “I don’t know exactly who wrote them. It’s — you know, I had eight or nine people working for me back then. And a lot of people wrote a lot of different things. So I’ve condemned them and — and did not write them. And I’ve said this quite a few times,” Paul said.

  172. Rob Banks

    @201

    Boiling terror suspects in oil before a stadium of onlookers with live TV coverage may be unacceptable for you. I respect that. The question is are they acceptable for the military for most onlookers. I’d hazard a guess and say yes. I have no position position on bringing back crucifixion and drawing and quartering.

    In your mind, there might be a 100% codified rulebook for how the Gitmo prisoners should be treated. Maybe you oppose the use of the rack and the iron maiden, but you shouldn’t be so rigid in your thinking.

    Barack Obama tried to end torture, medical marijuana raids, indefinite detentions, and other things the liberals used to think were bad Bush policies, but in the end it didn’t work out and he decided to just be like Bush except more so. The libertarians should learn from that and support Bush-Obama policies without being elected, so they don’t have to backtrack later.

    To burn suspects at the stake or not to burn suspects at the stake…It appears to be complicated.

    This position certainly strikes me as reasonable:

    “Individuals detained by the U.S., whether it be at Guantanamo Bay or elsewhere, must be given due process via the courts or trial by ordeal, and must not be stoned to death without regard to those fundamental processes.”

  173. Robert Capozzi

    204 rb: The libertarians should learn from that and support Bush-Obama policies without being elected, so they don’t have to backtrack later.

    me: Amusing. Absolutist thinking leads to such extrapolation that you engage in: recognizing that Gitmo is complicated means to you that that leads to long-abolished torture methods. Hmm, interesting.

    There may come a day when prison itself will be viewed as torture. People then might view prison as an unconscionable practice.

    So, yes, these sorts of things ARE relative.

    I do, btw, have a position on the death penalty…I oppose it in all circumstances.

    But, yes, I find that the complications of Gitmo that both the Rs and Ds have had on the issue tell me that a brightline test on the issue is unwise.

  174. JT

    Capozzi: “I do, btw, have a position on the death penalty…I oppose it in all circumstances.”

    Isn’t that absolutist thinking?

    I don’t see why it makes sense to take that position but not the position that anyone taken into government custody should have an open trial in accordance with federal law (Bill of Rights).

  175. Robert Capozzi

    206 jt, no, I just can’t imagine a situation that would justify taking another person’s life if that person has been isolated from the general population.

    But thanks for asking.

    I am not convinced that the Bill of Rights applies to enemy combatants. It’s a far more complicated situation than the death penalty.

  176. Common Tater

    “I am not convinced that the Bill of Rights applies to enemy combatants.”

    No war has been declared, but if it had, there are international laws about the treatment of POWs. Military kangaroo courts, torture and the like are not allowed by treaties which the US is party to.

    The sad (and sadly no longer shocking) fact that Democrats and Republicans no longer see such things as reprehensible and beyond the pale does not mean Libertarians should be equally barbaric.

  177. JT

    Capozzi: “I am not convinced that the Bill of Rights applies to enemy combatants. It’s a far more complicated situation than the death penalty.”

    According to YOU. The death penalty has been subject to as much public debate as any political issue, as I’m sure you know. I suspect that many people think it’s more complicated than Gitmo. I know I do.

    Also, we’re talking about people who’ve been ACCUSED of being “enemy combatants.” That term covers a range of suspects. The purpose of a trial is to actually determine each one’s culpability and punishment according to due process.

    Basically, when you aren’t sure of something, then you accuse other people who are sure of dogmatic absolutism. When you’re sure, however, well…it’s not such a complicated issue.

  178. Robert Capozzi

    208 ct, right. That’s why GJ’s position sounds about right to me: “Individuals detained by the U.S., whether it be at Guantanamo Bay or elsewhere, must be given due process via the courts or military tribunals, and must not be held indefinitely without regard to those fundamental processes.”

    And, yes, no war was declared, a big mistake, as is the continuing dysfunction that is Gitmo. Undoing the layers of mistakes might happen with a magic wand, but I’m not holding my breath….

  179. Robert Capozzi

    209 jt, actually, one can never really be sure of anything, near as I can tell. I don’t recall ever hearing a convincing case for the death penalty, though. Maybe there IS one, I’ve just not heard it yet. Yes, it does seem pretty straightforward to me…is it ever justified to kill a prisoner? A “no” comes back for me every time.

    You, JT, may have an argument that I’ve not heard that would trigger a “yes” from my conscience. I’m open to hearing it….

    What to do with people picked up on a battlefield far away in an undeclared war in which they may have been participating as an enemy, taken prisoner, put in a prison camp off shore, etc….seems like a lot of moving parts there, mistakes compounded a few times over.

    GJ hits the right notes for this one for me. Directionally wise, a bit vague. No need to distract from the bigger, more enduring issues of war and peace, civil liberties at home, and a reduction of the State’s claim and control of our economic lives.

  180. Here's a radical idea

    “Daytime talk show”? Those nazi’s killed or ordered the killing of millions of people. The got what they deserved at the end of the rope!

    So is some crazy people in another country go around and cut off the heads of Americans, and chant to their God, what should we do? What if it was your relative they hacked up?
    I am not saying we lower ourselves to their level. But, we can’t just put our heads in the sand either.

  181. Robert Capozzi

    Semi-apropos to the NewsletterGate matter, Rockwell posted this on LRC today:

    “20 years ago, I ceased being active in the Birch Society, feeling outnumbered and insignificant against the tide I saw coming against us as a nation. …That is why I am willing to donate my one-time offering [to LRC]… ”

    Is it just me, or is this incredibly tin-eared?

  182. reader

    Lew may or may not hear your anti-JBS hate; but the problem is likely in your heart and not Lew’s ear.

  183. Robert Capozzi

    216 r, thanks for the feedback. What makes you think I “hate” JBS? I don’t. I really don’t know much about them, but I do know that they are damaged reputation-wise. Do you see it otherwise?

    Consciously choosing — on the day of the Iowa Caucus! — to cite JBS on the website that Ron Paul allegedly reads first each morning is really puzzling to me.

  184. JT

    Capozzi: “I don’t recall ever hearing a convincing case for the death penalty, though.”

    Just because you’ve never heard an argument that convinced you doesn’t mean it’s a less complicated issue. I can reject arguments for a particular conclusion while recognizing that it’s not a simple matter. Other people may have reached the same conclusion (I may have also), but found that it took a lot of thinking to do so.

    Capozzi: “What to do with people picked up on a battlefield far away in an undeclared war in which they may have been participating as an enemy, taken prisoner, put in a prison camp off shore, etc….seems like a lot of moving parts there, mistakes compounded a few times over.”

    You made an absolute claim that Gitmo is more complicated than the death penalty. That’s your own opinion. I don’t think it is. I don’t think other Libertarians are as divided on Gitmo as on capital punishment, either.

    Capozzi: “GJ hits the right notes for this one for me.”

    GJ’s statement is certainly not something that would preclude me from supporting him, as I said earlier.

    However, I can’t say I understand why any suspect would need to be tried by a military tribunal at a prison in Cuba if due process is to be respected. The arguments I’ve heard for Gitmo basically boil down to the fact that since the prison isn’t on U.S. territory and the prisoners there are supposed to be “enemy combatants,” the U.S. government doesn’t need to afford detainees due process. In other words, it’s a means for government officials to ignore the Bill of Rights. If someone wants due process for alleged “enemy combatants,” then why not simply charge them in U.S. courts and afford them due process just as accused terrorists in the U.S. are? Seems to me like GJ wants to have his cake and eat it too on this one.

  185. Robert Capozzi

    218 jt: You made an absolute claim that Gitmo is more complicated than the death penalty. That’s your own opinion. I don’t think it is. I don’t think other Libertarians are as divided on Gitmo as on capital punishment, either.

    me: Hmm, not sure I made an “absolute” claim, but yes it’s only my opinion that Gitmo is more complicated than the death penalty. Sorry I’ve not made that clear. It would not be incorrect to have the opposite opinion.

    jt: Seems to me like GJ wants to have his cake and eat it too on this one.

    me: Hmm, why do you say that? I think his handling of the issue is near optimal, all things considered. Are you saying he’s being cynical, because if you are, I disagree. I’d have preferred that there never was a Gitmo, or an Iraq. I’d like to see the mess cleaned up as justly as possible. I also perceive complications on the issue, which apparently you don’t. Perhaps that’s why we’re not seeing eye-to-eye on this one….

  186. Robert Capozzi

    220 dw, yes, he was quoting a reader. He chose to put that in the thought stream. He didn’t have to.

    Not a discerning move, IMO…

  187. Thomas L. Knapp

    Gitmo is not especially complicated. Or rather it is, but solving it isn’t.

    It’s complicated because the US government has attempted to create a half-fish/half-fowl/all-unperson setup where the detainees are like POWs in that they aren’t charged with crimes or afforded due process, but in which the detainees are treated like criminals when it comes to the rights and protections which captors are obligated to provide POWs, and in which the detainees are subject to torture at US will.

    The way out is simple — either treat them as POWs, or treat them as criminals, or let them go.

    “Simple” and “easy” are not the same thing. Obviously there’s some political will involved in saying “we fucked up big-time” and fixing it, especially since some of those who contrived the massive fuck-up are liable for trial as war criminals. But not un-fucking it doesn’t make it any simpler.

  188. JT

    Capozzi: “Hmm, why do you say that? I think his handling of the issue is near optimal, all things considered. Are you saying he’s being cynical, because if you are, I disagree.”

    No. I’m saying that he wants to appeal to people who favor keeping Gitmo open while still appealing to people who favor due process for detainees. But it doesn’t make any sense to me to endorse Gitmo yet also endorse due process. That’s why I wrote:

    “However, I can’t say I understand why any suspect would need to be tried by a military tribunal at a prison in Cuba if due process is to be respected. The arguments I’ve heard for Gitmo basically boil down to the fact that since the prison isn’t on U.S. territory and the prisoners there are supposed to be “enemy combatants,” the U.S. government doesn’t need to afford detainees due process. In other words, it’s a means for government officials to ignore the Bill of Rights. If someone wants due process for alleged “enemy combatants,” then why not simply charge them in U.S. courts and afford them due process just as accused terrorists in the U.S. are? Seems to me like GJ wants to have his cake and eat it too on this one.”

  189. Robert Capozzi

    223 jt: I’m saying that he wants to appeal to people who favor keeping Gitmo open while still appealing to people who favor due process for detainees.

    me: I’d call that “cynical.” Perhaps “disingenuous.” Myself, I can’t read GJ’s or anyone’s mind…in fact, I have a hard enough time reading my own mind!

    With his Zen tendencies, I’d not be surprised if GJ was honest enough with himself to admit to a similar limitation, and leave his view on Gitmo as a general statement, rather than parsing out the “correct” (and profoundly elusive) position.

    This may not be a question of cake at all, but a recognition of a distracting quagmire…

  190. George Phillies

    And if this genius is our nominee, as could occur, how is he then going to be able to run effectively against Paul, should Paul gain the Republican nomination? It would be a farce.

  191. Gene Berkman

    GP @ 225 – Obviously Ron Paul will not get the Republican nomination for President. His views are too much in line with Libertarian views – from opposing the Iraq War to legalizing drugs – and Gary Johnson is the back-up candidate who will carry the Libertarian message in the general electio

  192. Brian Holtz

    Intrade currently gives Ron Paul a 2% chance of winning the GOP nomination. Libertarians worried about the problem of Ron Paul being the GOP nominee can thus buy an insurance policy that pays 50X the insurance premium.

  193. JT

    Me: “I’m saying that [GJ] wants to appeal to people who favor keeping Gitmo open while still appealing to people who favor due process for detainees.”

    Capozzi: “…I’d call that “cynical.” Perhaps “disingenuous.””

    If a candidate is against legal abortion, don’t you think he wants to appeal to people who are against legal abortion? If a candidate is for it, don’t you think he wants to appeal to people who are for it? That seems pretty obvious to me.

    If a candidate wants to keep Gitmo open, I think he wants to appeal to people who think the same. If he wants due process for detainees, I think he wants to appeal to people who want the same. But wanting both makes no sense to me. Again I ask, if you’re actually concerned about due process for the accused, then why not try them in courts just as people who are arrested in the U.S. for terrorism are? I can’t think of a good answer why not. Can you tell me one?

    Also, I hope you realize that someone can voice disagreement with GJ on something and still think he’s worth supporting.

    Capozzi: “Myself, I can’t read GJ’s or anyone’s mind…in fact, I have a hard enough time reading my own mind!”

    I know.

  194. paulie

    And if this genius is our nominee, as could occur, how is he then going to be able to run effectively against Paul, should Paul gain the Republican nomination?

    If Paul somehow manages to be on track to win the Republican nomination come LP convention time, which is extremely unlikely, I don’t believe the LP convention delegates would nominate Johnson or anyone else for president, and I don’t believe Johnson would continue to seek the nomination.

    Regardless of whether that is good or bad that is my prediction under that scenario.

  195. paulie

    wanting both makes no sense to me. Again I ask, if you’re actually concerned about due process for the accused, then why not try them in courts just as people who are arrested in the U.S. for terrorism are? I can’t think of a good answer why not.

    Exactly!

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