January 2012 Open Thread

See descriptions under the previous open threads if you don’t know what the open threads are about (although it’s pretty self-explanatory).

Here is a video from Rap News AKA the Juice Media to start your new year. Happy New Year everyone!

205 thoughts on “January 2012 Open Thread

  1. Marc Montoni

    Regarding the December Open Thread discussion about global warming, Michael Wilson touched upon eliminating a big chunk of our fossil fuel use just by decommissioning the military.

    I think that actually misses the mark.

    Of course what Michael proposes should be implemented, but why stop with the military? Shuttering the rest of the government should also be on the list of fuel-saving measures.

    In the meantime, just asking government workers to be the first in line to adopt the fuel-saving measures they want everyone else to use would be a great start.

    There are numerous ways the interaction of people with the environment can be improved, even in compliance with libertarian principle.

    For instance, the rapid rise in fossil fuels in America is due in no small part to policies of ‘progressive’ politicians that have been enacted into law in the past century. Take land-use planning (“zoning”). Zoning has done more than any automaker or petroleum company to ruin the environment — it has converted walkable, compact cities into vast wastelands where the only way to get to anything important is to get in the car. So we can start by promoting the abolition of zoning.

    I wrote an article on how zoning began and continues to encourage sprawl here.

    As was mentioned earlier, free roads are a subsidy. They can be abolished also — abolishing “free” roads doesn’t mean there won’t be roads — just that someone will have to have the economic incentive to build a road. Of course, there are lamestreamers who will doubtless chime in with their witch-doctor wisdom that “libertarians must never talk about private roads”, even though politicians are tripping over themselves trying to get on the news to opine about public-private partnerships for infrastructure.

  2. Brian Holtz

    Free roads allow free riders, and free ridership is indeed a subsidy. Congestion pricing is a market-oriented solution hailed almost unanimously by economists, but there are anarchists who will doubtless chime in that “libertarians must never talk about a congestion price that somebody might call a tax”.

    Free polluting is a subsidy, and should be abolished also. Abolishing “free” pollution doesn’t mean there won’t be pollution — just that polluters will have to balance its internal benefits with the costs it exernalizes onto others. Of course, there are anarchists who will doubtless chime in that “libertarians must never talk about a pollution fine that somebody might call a tax”.

    Free depletion of natural resources is a subsidy, and should be abolished also. Abolishing “free” resource depletion doesn’t mean there won’t be resource use — just that resource users will have to pay to the extent they violate Locke’s homesteading rule to leave “enough, and as good, in common for others”. Of course, there are anarchists who will doubtless chime in that “libertarians must never talk about a depletion price that somebody might call a tax”.

    For more about protecting the environment by replacing taxes with prices and fines, read about the Green Tax Shift advocated by geoanarchist economist (and former LP candidate) Fred Foldvary.

  3. Brian Holtz

    Re: private roads, note that by an analysis similar to that of the http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coase_theorem, it doesn’t really matter who “owns” the road. What matters is how the roads are financed and how access to them is controlled/priced. Show me the “owner” of the streets in a neighborhood, and I’ll show you a government.

    Geolibertarians prescribe radically local provision of public goods (like streets), financing them via ground rents like those collected by malls, business parks, condominiums, and homeowners associations. If geolibertarian policies are pursued far enough, the difference between local “governments” and private communities becomes blurred, and hinges on the governance rules adopted as the public-goods assets of current governments get subdivided/privatized.

  4. Eric Sundwall

    Once the roads are setup as a ‘public good’, everything else is easily justified as a public good too.

    Thus an anarchist might also claim that coercing your neighbor to pay for snow removal leads to unmanned drone strikes that kill children in foreign lands in your name.

  5. Brian Holtz

    Nobody “sets up” roads as a public good. “Public good” is a technical term in economics. Economists classify a good as public if it is non-rival and non-excludable. Under normal uncongested conditions, streets count as public goods because there’s no efficient way to exclude people from using them. Uncongested roads between two points aren’t public goods but rather club goods if it’s feasible to make them excludable e.g. with toll booths. If non-excludable local streets are so congested as to be rival, then they count not as public or club goods but as common goods. Finally, if a road is both excludable and congested enough to be considered rival, then it counts as a private good.

    None of this is controversial to economists. Some libertarian economists dispute whether government needs to be involved in the provision/regulation of non-private goods, but none of them pretend that the concepts aren’t clear.

    If your strategy for saving foreign children from drone strikes is to burn all the economics textbooks, then those kids don’t have much hope…

  6. paulie Post author

    Free roads allow free riders, and free ridership is indeed a subsidy. Congestion pricing is a market-oriented solution hailed almost unanimously by economists, but there are anarchists who will doubtless chime in that “libertarians must never talk about a congestion price that somebody might call a tax”.

    As far as I know, no libertarians would object to the right of private road owners to implement congestion pricing.

    What some might question is whether government planners of artificially monopolized and coercively funded roads can make such determinations intelligently.

    Of course, there are anarchists who will doubtless chime in that “libertarians must never talk about a pollution fine that somebody might call a tax”.

    There might be some, but I think most anarchist libertarians would agree that polluters should owe compensatory damages to those harmed by their pollution.

    To address a point someone (Phillies?) made on the December discussion, a tort-based system of dealing with this compensation need not mean people constantly suing each other. I think what would generally happen is that companies would buy insurance to handle pollution related liability, and insurance companies would conduct inspections to minimize their own liability. Since insurance companies would have to compete for business, they would have better incentive than monopoly government regulators to make sure that companies minimize external costs and risks.

  7. paulie Post author

    Show me the “owner” of the streets in a neighborhood, and I’ll show you a government.

    Was anyone forced to pay for the construction or operation of said streets? Can they be bought or sold on a competitive market?

  8. Brian Holtz

    companies would buy insurance to handle pollution related liability, and insurance companies would conduct inspections to minimize their own liability

    To imagine that pollution is a problem caused largely by deep-pocket lawsuit targets is to ignore the actual tragedy-of-the-commons problem here. TotC is by definition about goods that are rival and non-excludable — i.e. have shallow-pocket hard-to-identify overusers.

    @10

    1) It’s a fantasy to hope that you can choose to buy a driveway without also choosing to pay in some way for street connected to it. Any theory that purports to disconnect these two choices is very close to self-refuting.

    2) Show me homeowners willing to sell all control of their neighborhood streets on the open market, and I’ll show you homeowners that either 1) have mafia guns to their heads or 2) are all helicopter pilots.

  9. Brian Holtz

    @11 Re-read @5: If geolibertarian policies are pursued far enough, the difference between local “governments” and private communities becomes blurred.

  10. paulie Post author

    To imagine that pollution is a problem caused largely by deep-pocket lawsuit targets is to ignore the actual tragedy-of-the-commons problem here. TotC is by definition about goods that are rival and non-excludable — i.e. have shallow-pocket hard-to-identify overusers.

    Theories of market anarchist approaches to solving non point source pollution have been explored elsewhere. I believe I’ve provided you with some links before.

    It’s a fantasy to hope that you can choose to buy a driveway without also choosing to pay in some way for street connected to it.

    True. From this, I don’t conclude that a monopoly should be established under threat of force.

    Show me homeowners willing to sell all control of their neighborhood streets on the open market, and I’ll show you homeowners that either 1) have mafia guns to their heads or 2) are all helicopter pilots.

    Why not an open market for control of streets…because an enforced monopoly does such a great job?

    I’d say a regime monopoly is much more akin to mafia guns to people’s heads than is an open market in street operation.

  11. Brian Holtz

    I’m in favor of a community’s landholders having joint ownership/responsibility for their local streets. This is about as likely to result in “an open market in street operation” as it is that a landholder would sell the outer perimeter ring of his property.

    I don’t advocate the threat of force in provision of public goods. If you as a landholder decline to return to our community the ground rent you appropriate from proximity to our public/club goods, then we could simply disconnect you from our wires and pipes, and while you’re in arrears we could publish your name, address, and photo as someone whose property and person are excluded from the protections of our LVT-financed police and courts. If we catch you trespassing on any of our streets, parks, or other LVT-financed spaces, then you would owe the arrears on your parcel’s land value tax, per the terms of the no-trespassing signs prominently marking those spaces.

  12. Translations previous ............

    New Hamshire: ‘creationism’ ………..

    The Old Testament was not written in 21st Century American English!

    Wait a minute! [Sixty seconds ?????????? Well look at it this way. Sixty seconds or 'a moment'!]

    The universe in six days ??????????? Or the Biblical Greek equivalent of ‘an undetermined amount of time ………..’

    Duh!

    Indiana: Evolution as a theory ?????????? I have no truck with that!

  13. Thomas L. Knapp

    @14,

    Right. Missed that. Touche.

    Show me homeowners willing to sell all control of their neighborhood streets on the open market, and I’ll show you homeowners that either 1) have mafia guns to their heads or 2) are all helicopter pilots.

    True.

    My suspicion is that if the state got out of the street business, what you would see is a mix of “private neighborhood streets” (local neighborhoods becoming gated neighborhoods with privates streets accessible only to residents and invited visitors, with the residents associating to pay for maintenance) and “public” streets operated by companies that compete for customers (possibly by giving free or discounted memberships to resident associations with driveways on high-traffic streets they’d like to operate?), but also cross-honor purchases of access packages (using RFID, etc., like some current toll road companies; if you buy access from, Acme, you can also drive on Consolidated’s streets; some formula totes up who drove where and any inequities — Acme’s customers drove 100k miles on Consolidated’s streets, Consolidated’s customers only drove 50k on Acme’s — get settled periodically).

  14. Eric Sundwall

    Public good theory is not regulated strictly to economic text books, however tempting that allure may seem to some.

    Yes my stategy to save kids from statists has always been to delete the wikipedia entry on a public good. Burning books is so twentieth century.

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

    2008 – Ron Paul TV Ad: #1 for New Hampshire – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=30yxHqSUva8&feature=related

    2011-12 – Ron Paul – “The one who can beat Obama” – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pChzOaIeyxY&feature=endscreen&NR=1

    I hope everyone can see the improvement. The goal is to spread the message of LIBERTY to John Q. Public.
    - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lhyaiOZhpSg&feature=endscreen&NR=1

    Ron Paul – The One you can trust – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XESux7oFMDY&feature=player_embedded

    Paul/Johnson
    Paul/Wrights
    Paul/Harris
    Paul/Gary
    ???

    Over $50 million is a terrible thing to waste. This time the Libertarian Party needs to nominate Dr. Paul.

  16. lost

    #21,

    Kinda hard to do that right now, as he’s not running for it.

    If after a few more primaries he withdraws from the GOP race and wants the LP line I am not 100% sure the LP would need to have it’s convention.

  17. johncjackson

    Ron Paul is going all the way to the ( GOP) Convention. He will finish a distant second in delegates and, like Jesse Jackson, will receive no consolation prizes.

  18. Michael H. Wilson

    @ 125 I’m not so sure. I give him better than a 50/50 chance at the VP nomination. If Romney gets the Prez he sure as hell will not want to give up those who are Paul’s followers. That’s much of the youth now somewhat in the republican tent. If Paul does not get the VP slot but has done well in delegates, well then it could be a mess.

  19. George Phillies

    Paul’s positions on many issues are incompatible with those of other Republicans. It is hard to imagine him getting and keeping a Republican VP nomination. Romney has the far more serious challenge of lining up the support of the Christian right, many of whom doubt his credentials.

  20. Brian Holtz

    @27 Yes — Paul may not be as libertarian as we’d wish, but he’s way too libertarian to get the GOP VP nod from any opponent still left in the field.

  21. Michael H. Wilson

    Brian I am going to disagree. If Paul does well in all the primaries and comes out of California with some decent numbers I would not be surprised to see him as a contender for the VP slot. Let’s see how this unfolds starting tomorrow.

  22. Darryl W. Perry

    A Judge Said It… It Must Be True
    http://www.freepatriot-press.com/2012/01/judge-said-it-it-must-be-true.html

    The war drum against Iran beats louder, thanks in part to a ruling from U.S. District Court Judge George Daniels on December 15, 2011 ruling that Iran was linked to the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. The Eurasia Review reports, “Judge Daniels had announced his ruling in Havlish, et al. v. bin Laden, et al., in open court on Thursday, December 15, 2011, following a three-hour courtroom presentation by the families’ attorneys. Then Judge Daniels entered a written Order of Judgment backed by 53 pages of detailed Findings of Fact and Conclusions of Law on Friday, December 23, 2011.”

    I must ask:
    * will this court ruling be used as justification to invade Iran as part of the Global War on Terror?
    * just because a Judge said that Iran was behind 9/11; does that make it true?

    A glance at past court rulings will show that judges are not always right.

  23. paulie Post author

    Ron Paul is going all the way to the ( GOP) Convention.

    Not necessarily.

    no consolation prizes.

    I think he’ll get a speech this time.

    If he threatens to bolt, it is possible Romney could be sufficiently worried about the possibility to accept Rand (not Ron) Paul as VP to head it off.

    I can see such a deal as being at least possible.

    Rand Paul is not as far off the reservation as his dad, and it would position him better for a future run.

  24. johncjackson

    I think the Rand deal would be good politically, but I still see that as a long shot. I think that might be the best scenario for the Pauls, but I don’t know how much Ron takes his son’s career into consideration or how much of a victory that would be for the larger movement.

  25. johncjackson

    My point about no consolation prizes is that I could definitely see a scenario of a strong Paul campaign ending in no VP offer and little to no Republican effort to embrace any of Paul’s issues.

  26. Losty

    FORGET #39!!

    MSNBC Just came back, and reported it was a hoax,

    Sorry.. MSNBC/NBC usually one of the good MSM, They got got, Sorry..

  27. paulie Post author

    Rush Limbaugh Loves Democrats

    Posted by Thomas DiLorenzo on January 4, 2012 08:15 AM at Lew Rockwell blog

    On his show yesterday Rush Limbaugh was dreaming up numerous excuses for his audience of neocon dittoheads to spout just in case they experienced the worst nightmare of every warmongering neocon chickenhawk: a Ron Paul victory in Iowa. One excuse that was in the ready was Limbaugh’s theory that Democrats in Iowa were switching their voter registrations to Republican for one day so that they could vote for “the biggest kook” (Limbaugh’s language), namely Ron Paul.

    In the context of this particular bloviation Limbaugh also stated, and I quote, “I love Rick Santorum.” And, he said, he “loves” all of them (except Ron Paul).

    Well, now that one of Limbaugh’s “lovers” has won the Iowa Caucuses, it is reasonable to assume that he loves Iowa Democrats as well — at least for a day — for they must have voted in droves for Santorum and Romney.

  28. Curt Boyd

    #37, what states is the Reform Party on? I only know of four (Florida, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi), but the article says five.

  29. William Saturn

    I do not know, which is why it is not stated in the article. Robby Wells says it is five.

  30. William Saturn

    And for those interested in the Reform Party, I will pass on that Frank McEnulty has decided that he will not run for president in 2012. I forwarded an e-mail from McEnulty to IPR about this, but they have yet to report it.

  31. donlake@localnet.com

    Just hours ago, President Obama announced that he has, at long last, made a recess appointment of Richard Cordray to run the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

    There is no doubt that Public Citizen — that you — helped the president take this assertive and necessary step.

    No organization was a stronger voice than Public Citizen in calling for the creation of the new bureau as part of the Wall Street reform legislation.

    No organization has been more active than Public Citizen in demanding the appointment of a qualified leader for the bureau, despite partisan obstructionism by Wall Street’s lackeys in Congress. Public Citizen activists like you have sent over 95,000 messages to Congress in support of the bureau and either Elizabeth Warren or Richard Cordray as its leader.

    And no organization has done more than Public Citizen to point out — including in a letter to President Obama way back in June — that both the Constitution and historical precedent clearly establish the president’s authority to make this recess appointment.

  32. paulie Post author

    what states is the Reform Party on? I only know of four (Florida, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi), but the article says five.

    I’m also only aware of those four. If anyone knows a fifth please let me know.

  33. Darryl W. Perry

    Did anyone else notice the post about Root’s Holiday media appearances was taken down after I made comments about Wayne’s commentary being run on Dondero’s LibertarianRepublican.net? Was it removed because I cited from the site “Libertarian Republicans are libertarians who believe in working within the Republican Party” and “We’ve been around since 2005. (Formerly MainstreamLibertarian.com which evolved out of the 2004 Libertarians for Bush effort.)”?

  34. paulie Post author

    Dashboard says it was edited by Trent Hill after Bruce posted it, and reverted to draft.

    I didn’t read it, so not sure what the issue was.

  35. paulie Post author

    Coming right up if I don’t fall asleep first. Starting to fade here…

    Gotta catch some Zs but will try to get to it in the morning. Others welcome to it if they get to it first tonight or if I forget tomorrow.

  36. donlake@localnet.com

    [Lake ----- Obama, My Yokohama Momma:]

    NDAA FOLLOW-UP / FURTHER TREASONOUS ACTS

    By Michael LeMieux
    January 4, 2012
    NewsWithViews.com

    Directly on the heels of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), that arguably makes US Citizens detain-able by the military, comes the coup de grace in the form of a new bill called the “Enemy Expatriation Act.”

    [Lake: all to gether class, "21st Century Krystal Nyche ......."]

  37. paulie Post author

    It was removed because of editorial content. I’m sure it will reappear later.

    I did see an email exchange between Bruce and Trent about that right before I crashed out. I’ll stay out of it though.

  38. Curt Boyd

    44, 56 – I assume they will be on in New Jersey as well. They have a pretty strong group there, and a relatively easy ballot access requirement.

  39. Rob Banks

    I believe the question was what states they are on in already, not where they are likely to be on.

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

    @49 The media is looking for anything to discredit the non-interventionist campaign of Dr.Paul. The Paul’s cannot hint at it while they are running for the GOP nomination.

    PAUL/JOHNSON ’12
    PAUL/HARRIS ’12
    PAUL/WRIGHTS ’12
    PAUL/GARY ’12
    PAUL/VENTURA 2012

    Drew • St Louis, Missouri • DR.Paul’s problem is most of his support lies with younger, free-thinking voters whom don’t make up a huge percentage of the vote.

    That’s right people. This country’s future lays in the hands of out of touch old dinosaurs who vote any way Fox or CNN tell them to. Paul will not have a chance unless we awaken these people by phoning them, emailing them, or going door to door and explaining to them how much of a positive impact Ron Paul would have for the future of this country.

    CNN Iowa Caucus–Vote by Age

    ———-Paul……….Santorum…….Romney
    17-24………50%……….21%…………..13%
    25-29………45%……….27%…………..12%
    30-39………34%……….30%…………..17%
    40-49………17%……….25%…………..23%
    50-64………15%……….27%…………..26%
    65+………..11%……….20%…………..33%

    Here’s the most recent New Hampshire poll (Zogby, 01/04/2012) following Iowa results:

    Mitt Romney – 38%,
    Ron Paul – 24%,
    Rick Santorum – 11%.

    What does this tell you? Ron Paul is surging, and with enough hard work, we CAN win New Hampshire. Volunteers are already working hard in NH, but more help is urgently needed.

    Here’s how you can help Ron Paul win New Hampshire (pick one or more!):

    1. If you can’t physically be in NH: http://phone.ronpaul2012.com/ – this is what Ron Paul’s campaign wants you to do. Phone from Home is how we get around the media smear, and it is the most effective way to do your part to help win NH if you can’t participate in boots on the ground efforts. Do it, as much as you’re able, until NH Primary on January 10!

    2. If you can come to NH or are in NH, the Ron Paul Campaign in NH needs volunteers – and especially on the Primary Day, January 10! Send an email to RonN@ronpaul2012.com (Ron Noyes, Ron Paul 2012 Campaign staff in NH) with your location, days you can be in NH, and your phone number. He will plug you in where help is needed!

    3. If you can only make it to NH for this weekend, Jan 7 – Jan 8, please participate in the “Boots on the Ground Weekend” event in NH! For more info about this very big and important event and about lodging for this event, see http://www.boots2nh.com and also the corresponding Facebook event at http://www.facebook.com/events/151151268323559

    The NH Primary is January 10. The time to help is now. We need ALL hands on deck for this one, people. This is it. If you can’t get to New Hampshire, then pick up the phone and start calling Phone from Home (see #1 above).

    (This email is sent voluntarily by http://www.ronpaulcountry.com and is unsolicited by Ron Paul 2012 PCC or any other PAC or organization.)

    @36 You are correct Sir.

  41. paulie Post author

    The Paul campaign should focus as much energy as possible on getting independents, younger voters and those most concerned with peace and civil liberties issues to vote in NH. Those are the people that actually voted for Paul in IA; see http://freestudents.blogspot.com/2012/01/iowa-and-ron-paul-how-rockwell-strategy.html

    However in the leadup to Iowa, the phonebanking seemed to be focused on getting conservative Republicans to support Paul – at least that was my read on it when I tried the phonebank out. It was the same mistake they made in NH in 2008.

    This time, there is no Democratic race for independents to vote in, so Paul could do well in NH…if his campaign realizes who his constituency actually is and focuses on turning them out to vote rather than wasting their efforts on persuading anyone who would ever seriously consider voting for Romney, Santorum or Gingrich.

  42. paulie Post author

    Someone forgot to tell the Democrats that. They have a primary on the schedule.

    It’s not exactly dramatic.

    Some Democrats will show up, but clearly the bigger draw for independents this time is on the Republican side.

  43. Darryl W. Perry

    I’m curious whether the Democratic Party follows the “rules” and awards the NH delegates to Darcy Richardson, since Obama forgot to file his slate of delegates.

  44. Thomas L. Knapp

    This stuff is always difficult to untangle, but my impression is that the New Hampshire primary is really effectively a “straw poll” — the votes cast do not directly elect delegates, but rather indicate support for a candidate, with some kind of post-convention caucus or convention process for actual delegate selection. Which makes the slate submission requirement silly and/or vestigial.

    But I could be wrong.

  45. Wesley T. Feinstein

    Jan 6 Politics1com: SOUTH CAROLINA (CNN/Time): Romney 37%, Santorum 19%, Gingrich 18%, Paul 12%, Perry 5%, Huntsman 1%.

    Jan 6 Politics1com: NEW HAMPSHIRE (Rasmussen): Romney 42%, Paul 18%, Santorum 13%, Huntsman 12%, Gingrich 8%, Perry 1%.

  46. Paul Spam

    @74 Proportional distribution based on popular vote, with a 10% cutoff. The 10% means that the exact Huntsman and Gingrich percentages have a big effect on which votes are computed in the proportion.

    Of course, NH has all of 12 delegates, but these will be the first actual delegates assigned.

  47. Lew Rockwell Blog

    Conservatism Is a Lie
    Posted by Anthony Gregory on January 4, 2012 06:00 PM – Lew Rockwell.com

    Is anyone surprised that Ron’s Iowa supporters are young, liberal, and the least wealthy? He got a plurality of voters under 40 and about half of those under 30. A plurality of those making less than fifty thousand a year support him, and his biggest support comes from those making way less—they see through the claptrap that free markets benefit the wealthy at the expense of the poor. A plurality of those calling themselves moderate or liberal, rather than conservative, voted for the one man unlike any of the other Republicans. He did very well among independents; Republicans, on the other hand, preferred each of his two major competitors by a margin of two to one.

    The American Right’s position for the last sixty years at least has been: We will countenance socialism, so long as we get war and the police state. Is anyone surprised that most conservative Republicans would rather vote for a theocratic warmonger like Santorum or a soft socialist like Romney than a man of peace like Ron? I would bet 80% of Republicans would prefer Obama to Ron Paul, which is what about that percentage essentially voted for yesterday. Does this mean reaching out to the right is pointless? Of course not. It is always important to try to find converts to the cause of liberty. In absolute terms, many people who consider themselves conservatives can be brought to appreciate a foreign policy of America First, a constitutional respect for due process, an embrace of budgetary responsibility. Yet it is mostly the young, those not at all attached to the Buckley-Reagan-Palin view of conservatism, who are attracted to Ron Paul’s message and the Rothbardian focus on peace, sound money, and individual liberty.

    Most “conservatives” who will accept the Ron Paul program are not “conservatives” at all, but classical liberals who, repulsed by the collectivism, culture warring, and hypocrisy of the left, have by default joined company with a group of people just as guilty of collectivism, culture warring, and hypocrisy. Americans with traditional values can and should be libertarians. But it is a mistake to confuse political conservatism, the enemy of freedom from antiquity through the Cold War to this day, with libertarianism.

    With very few exceptions, the official conservative movement—comprising the liberventionists, the Tea Party usurpers in DC, the theocons, neocons, Reaganites, the rightwing think tanks, almost everyone on Fox News, and the National Review crowd—is peddling a lie: the mirage of small government coupled with militarism and the national security state. It is simply an impossibility to have liberty and the type of state the conservatives envision to vanquish evil abroad and in every bedroom. When the time comes to support either the one guy with a clear record and unquestioned principles for free enterprise and limited government, or a politician who is approximately as statist as Obama or worse, most conservatives will opt for the latter. Ultimately, conservatism is pro-war socialism.

  48. Webley Thurston Fowler

    Email from MPP:

    Anyone who’s following presidential politics has a general sense that some Republicans are okay on the marijuana issue, and most Republicans are terrible.

    - Ron Paul is obviously the best candidate. In fact, his views toward marijuana policy and the drug war are so much better than President Obama’s views that — if you’re a single-issue, drug-policy voter — you’d need to vote for Ron Paul.

    - Newt Gingrich is actually worse than you might think.

    - Mitt Romney, who is known for flip-flopping and being vague about a number of issues, is actually consistent about his views on the marijuana issue: He’s consistently bad. (In fact, we haven’t been able to find evidence that he has ever said or done anything good on our issue, ever.)

    - Rick Perry is good.

    Former Gov. Gary Johnson (R-NM) is also incredibly good on our issue, but he recently announced that he’s seeking the presidential nomination from the Libertarian Party, which we support.

    So, in an ideal world, Barack Obama, Ron Paul, and Gary Johnson will all be on the ballot on November 6. (And presumably, any Green Party or another progressive candidate will also be good on the marijuana issue.) We can only hope for such an Election Day …

    Sincerely,

    Rob Kampia
    Executive Director
    Marijuana Policy Project
    Washington, D.C.

  49. Critique Paul, Get Death Threat

    This is George Phillies.

    Yes, it was a real death threat.

    This is the internet we are talking about, so the author ID could be forged. The threatener claims to be former LP Illinois Libertarian Party State Chair, Val Vetter, who says he is now in Texas.

    Yes, I am a real Libertarian Party supporter. I spent thousands of dollars of my own money, and many hours of my time, getting the Libertarian Presidential candidate on the ballot (in my case, in Massachusetts) in 2008. I then organized the Federal litigation that actually put Barr on the Massachusetts ballot, took the case to the United States Supreme Court, and is now been accepted for hearing by the Massachusetts Supreme General Court.

    And now you see the sort of movement that is behind Congressman Paul.

    The Full diatribe, which was visible on linkedin.com on the Libertarian Party board at but is now under review, reads

    “Val Vetter • There aren’t many Libertarian presidential candidates I’ve actually been ashamed of – George: your rants here mark you as one (and the biggest BTW) Another who shall remain nameless (for now) went off on a rant at the 2008 convention about the LP nominee at the time – doing NOTHING for the Party. I didn’t like Barr – but since the Convention chose him as the LP’s candidate, I gave him the benefit of the doubt and supported his campaign and ballot access in Illinois at considerable cost and investment of volunteer time and miles.

    There will always be those who are uniters – and those who are dividers – Guess who the “divider” is in this thread…

    You want Republicans to “run the worst candidates they can find” Brilliant – and when they do that, either that worst candidate – or Obama – will be elected.

    Face it George, face reality: The best Libertarian candidate available doesn’t stand a ghost of a chance of beating even Obama – and certainly not beating anybody the GOP fields in this race.

    I love the LP dearly – even with it’s quirks, controversies, and endless infighting – but unless and until something changes SIGNIFICANTLY more than it has to date – Americans will never vote for LP presidential candidates in sufficient numbers to show up on election night TV screens.

    Back to the question I intended to answer before reading George’s rant: There is no party affiliation in Texas either, so of COURSE I will vote for Dr. Paul (yes, warts and all George) and then – if the GOP is STUPID enough to nominate someone else, I’ll vote for the LP candidate. EVEN though THAT person may not be the best candidate – or even the best libertarian candidate.

    Unfreakingbelievable! Ron Paul – LIFE member of the LP; 2-time LP presidential candidate; the very VOICE of libertarian ideals in Congress; and running a campaign that “everyday Americans” are responding to – and George Phillies has to badmouth him here.

    Right now – in the 2012 election, Americans have ONE chance – and one chance only – to try to pull our country BACK from the brink of disaster. That chance is Dr. Ron Paul.

    As for you George, If I never see you again it will be too soon. If I do see you again, I only hope it’s in the crosshairs of a scope attached to a high-power rifle – or 50 feet in front of my speeding pickup truck.”

    Your mileage may vary.

  50. Critique Paul, Get Death Threat

    Yes, this death threat

    “As for you George, If I never see you again it will be too soon. If I do see you again, I only hope it’s in the crosshairs of a scope attached to a high-power rifle – or 50 feet in front of my speeding pickup truck.”

  51. Robert Capozzi

    Not sure it’s QUITE a “threat,” but it surely is very, very close to one. And, really, really, inappropriate.

    MOST unfortunate that you received such a message.

  52. Libertarian Party Needs Your Support

    Republicans don’t want anyone having more fun than they do, and the Democrats don’t want anyone making more money than they do. Libertarians want you to make money and have fun. – Andre Marrou, 1992 LP Presidential candidate -> http://www.lp.org/

    I want to THANK Andre Marrou some twenty years later for winning Dixville Notch, NH and capturing the National News for a few wee hours of the morning for the LP. Thanks ol’ Buddy I hope you’re well, wherever you are !!!.

    MARROU/LORD ’92
    I was there for part of it !!!!!!!!!

  53. Laine

    Any one have insight on Ed O’Donnel? I saw him on the Chris O’Donnel show last night. He’s running in the New Hampshire primary against Obama and based off the interview plans to run third party in the general election.

  54. Johnson/Ventura '12

    Dems – Obama/Biden, he won’t give into the Clinton crusade for VP.

    GOP – Romney/McDonnell, McDonnell wants the VP slot and is a good governor of Virginia which is a swing state. I don’t think Rubio or any other 2016 GOP hopeful is going to jump on the Romney train, everyone believes he’ll lose.

    LP – Johnson/Ventura, that’s my choice.

    After that, I don’t know who Americans Elect would go with and I don’t think it’ll matter that much if they don’t get a good ticket.

  55. Deran

    I had wondered, and someone else had too, what had become of the National Organizing Committee 2012 founding meeting of early-December 2011.

    Seems they have created a coalition called Peace and Freedom Alliance National Organizing Committee 2012

    http://www.noc2012.org/index.html

    As far as I can tell, they have not developed a process for actually creating a united Left presidential campaign.

  56. Nominate Dr.Ron Paul The 2012 LP POTUS Nominee

    Ron Paul Super Brochure Now Mailing To South Carolina! (and BEYOND)

    http://www.ronpaulbrochure.com/sc_choose_county.php Only a few thousand so
    far, but I think we can get to the top of the thermometer! Check out how many
    have been sent to Iowa! http://www.ronpaulbrochure.com/ia_choose_county.php

    The Ron Paul Super Brochure is a grassroots project that is spearheaded by Curt
    Schultz and http://www.ronpaulproducts.com/ as an end run around the Ron Paul
    MSM media blackout. The plan is to print 10 million brochures to get information
    about Ron Paul directly into the hands of voters. You can help by ordering
    brochures to pass out ($70 for 1,000) and/or, go to Ron Paul Products and select
    from the precinct list where you would like them to be mailed, and it will be
    done for you!

    http://www.ronpaulbrochure.com/ (941)962-7660

    Please check out this video for more information, and help spread the word!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y7Y9O9AinV0&feature=youtu.be

    Get your own supply of Super Brochures at http://www.ronpaulproducts.com/
    (941)962-7660

    To Victory! Ron Paul 2012!

  57. Ed Noonan, California AIP, via Lake

    Please listen to our blogradio.com show tonight. Our guest will be Alice Novoa, who is a long time advocate for more secure borders.

    Ms. Novoa is a litigant of a lawsuit in Arizona to prevent an illegal alien from becoming a local judge…but the illegal alien was elected anyways.

    She will discuss how the unsecured borders and the corruption with the “eligibility matter” are related.

    You don’t want to miss what she has to say about the direction our nation is currently taking.

    Log in at 8:00 PM Pacific Time:
    http://www.blogtalkradio.com/art2defenderscalifornia/2012/01/12/article-ii-defenders-of-calfornia-radio-show

  58. Translations previous ............ Lake

    http://www.politics.yahoo.com

    “…….. repeatedly unfaithful Newt Gingrich behaved nearly as despicably as Edwards, yet even now he is making a credible, if fading, run for the White House.

    Edwards, by contrast, can’t walk into a restaurant without the risk of getting pelted by dinner rolls.

    There are a lot of things that make the ex-senator the pariah he is, and the brain is indeed one of biggest players.

    It was only in the last decade or so, with the widespread use of functional magnetic imaging (fMRI), that neurologists discovered the overlapping circuitry that governs morality and disgust. “

  59. Translations previous ............ Lake

    $2 million the charity received, $85,000 was supposed to have been returned to the agency and wasn’t, according to Don Ledford, a spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office of the Western District of Missouri.

    The indictment said Siljander [former U. S. Congress Member from Michigan] and three charity officers agreed to cover up the money’s origins and use it on the lobbying effort.

    Money was funneled to Siljander through nonprofits, prosecutors said.

    The original indictment alleged the charity sent about $130,000 to help Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, whom the United States has designated as a global terrorist.

    The money, sent to bank accounts in Peshawar, Pakistan, in 2003 and 2004, was masked as donations to an orphanage located in buildings that Hekmatyar owned.

    Authorities described Hekmatyar as an Afghan mujahedeen leader who has participated in and supported terrorist acts by al-Qaida and the Taliban.

    Prosecutors said Siljander, who now lives in Great Falls, Va., lied to the FBI about being hired to lobby for the charity.

    He told investigators that the money he received was a donation to help him write a book about Islam and Christianity.

    [Lake: why are we non Dems and non GOP so down on the Ds and Rs; they seem to be doing a great job and represented by wonderful folks ...........]

  60. Translations previous ............ Lake

    the long awaited OWS category ????????????

    http://www.news.yahoo.com

    ‘………. on Monday, the metal barricades surrounding Zuccotti Park were removed for the first time since the November raid.

    But protesters still can’t set up tents to camp overnight — and they don’t have a long-term solution to the housing problem.

    Their current home is Brashear’s West-Park Presbyterian Church, a stately 100-year-old house of worship on the Upper West Side that badly needs renovation.

    Occupy organizers see the cracks in the ceiling as an opportunity to repay the favor by helping to fix the place up.

    There are about 70 Occupiers staying there and another 30 or so at Park Slope United Methodist Church in Brooklyn.

    “Everybody tries to get along, make things work,” said Donna Marinelli, 52, of Connecticut, who was sitting on the floor in a sleeping bag alongside her cousin, David Monarca. “We were in the park in tents until they raided us.

    We wanted to stay for the movement. We didn’t want to leave when we just got here.” ‘

    [FEference: 1989 Chinese Central Committee]

  61. Losty

    OH: Oh Legislature intervenes to Circuit court to keep All third Parties off Primary Ballots..

    Stay Tuned..

  62. Alaska Constitution Party

    The Alaska Constitution Party calls upon the Alaska Legislature and Governor to repudiate the unlawful and treasonous acts of the federal Congress and President. Specifically, we call upon Alaska lawmakers to nullify the provisions contained within the National Defense Authorization Act which essentially attempts to negate our inalienable rights delineated in the Bill of Rights and U.S. Constitution. The NDAA allows for U.S. citizens to be detained, held, tortured and even executed without recourse. This is unacceptable to all free citizens and to those who love our legacy of liberty. Your silence at this time will rightly be viewed as complicity in the death of our Republic and the rule of law.

  63. George Phillies

    Sue in a timely way.

    As a a result of not doing so, Perry et al lost their challenge to the Virginia GOP primary ballot, and the ballot will be dominantly a two way between Romney and Paul.

  64. Winston T. Flowers

    It’s actually a double win: the judge said the residency requirement is probably unconstitutional, but Prick and Nut are off the ballot anyway.

    Live by the ballot access sword, die by the ballot access sword….

  65. Ivory Coaster

    http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0112/71443.html

    Kim Lehman, the Republican National Committeewoman from Iowa — and a Santorum endorser — confirmed that a recount is underway and echoed the predictions that it might change the result.
    “With a difference of eight votes, he could end up on top. We have found errors and they are still checking records,” Lehman said in an email Saturday. “By this Tuesday we will all know for sure.”
    Iowa’s not the only result Santorum’s looking to cast in a more positive light. Though the New Hampshire results haven’t been certified, Santorum has climbed narrowly ahead of Newt Gingrich there, overtaking the fourth place position, as he pointed out.

  66. Humongous Fungus

    @109-111

    Jan 14 Politics1com: SOUTH CAROLINA (Reuters/Ipsos): Romney 37%, Paul & Santorum tied at 16% each, Gingrich 12%.

  67. johncjackson

    Ron Paul doesn’t even dominate internet polls unless/until his supporters post a message to the effect of ” Oh No! We are losing this meaningless internet poll. We can’t lose. Everybody go vote!”

    I don’t see the point.

  68. Kim Dead Jung Party, via Lake

    We are awash in poll data these days, but two recent surveys, both offering grounds for optimism, are worth singling out. The first is a Reuters-Ipsos poll …….

    It’s hardly worth singling out given that it was conducted online and polled as many Democrats as Republicans, while using registered, not likely voters. I’m not sure there could be a weaker methodology ………….

  69. Kim Dead Jung Party, via Lake

    p, time and time again, but I did not bring it up ……

    there are regulars and ESPECIALLY IN ALT POLITICS there are ‘drop ins’

    and ESPECIALLY in alt politics [like religion] there are folks whom just do not know.

    I reflect upon the various pin headed remarks of passionate members of the defunct Veterans Party

    [a] the major montra of the political party was that Jesus Christ is to be broadcasted as the lord of the universe …………

    [b] every one gets to vote for President

    [c] personal voting elects Presidents

    [d] help me out, how many Congress Members face re – election in the next even numbered year (ALL OF THEM !!!!!)

    Ignorance, there is a cure, and part of that cure is IPR ………….

  70. Kim Dead Jung Party, via Lake

    126 George Phillies // Jan 15, 2012:

    “I’m not sure there could be a weaker methodology ….…”

    Limiting the poll to IPR participants comes immediately to mind.

    [Lake: does that include PhDs from the Bay Area ????? Especially ones that try to constantly twist things around.]

  71. Kim Dead Jung Party, via Lake

    AND IN SANDY EGO COUNTY:

    We asked readers to weigh the worst factual blunder and few backed Sanders or Jackson in the final stage of our contest.

    Horn and Cushman more evenly split the vote.

    “Bill Horn,” wrote Pat Seaborg. “It is just too big of a lie to not get first place.”

    “Cushman should win the prize because he represents the interests of the big money power mongers that rule the City,” wrote Fritz Liebhardt.

    Shortly before an important vote on a proposed Convention Center expansion, Cushman falsely claimed the project’s financing plan included no money from the city’s day-to-day budget.

    Not true. The plan would actually draw $105 million from the budget over three decades.

    If the money weren’t dedicated to the expansion, it’d flow to a pot of money that pays for a wide array of city services like police, parks and libraries.

    Much of the Convention Center debate has focused on how to pay for it and how much the public would contribute.

    Taking money from the city’s day-to-day budget is always a contentious issue.

    By saying the project wouldn’t involve of that money, Cushman gave the proposal an unmerited badge of honor.

    One reader who emailed argued that Cushman’s claim was more egregious because he’d misled on a costs proposal that’s being decided upon, while Horn had just inflated his past.

    It’s a compelling argument, but we felt Horn’s comment also had current implications.

    Though Cushman cited future costs and Horn cited past experiences, both used their claims to influence long-lasting, contemporary decisions.

    Horn cited his civil rights story to influence how the county’s political boundaries would be drawn for the next decade.

    Cushman said “no general fund” when that money would be tapped for the next three decades.

    In the end, readers selected Horn by a thin margin. We concur.

  72. LP Orgeon is Sued

    A suit has been filed against the LNC’s Oregon affiliate by a group of people claiming to be the affiliate.

    More as it happens.

    The law firm was recently paid by the LNC.

    George Phillies

  73. Hugh Mann

    First SC poll since Huntsman’s exit listed at RCP:

    Rasmussen Reports 1/16 – 1/16

    Romney 35 Gingrich 21 Paul 16 Santorum 16 Perry 5 – Romney +14

  74. Kim Dead Jung Party, via Lake

    ……. pressure from the Bush White House — and a groundswell of conservative outrage — led MSNBC to give the anti-war TV talk-show host the boot.

    It mattered little that Donahue had won nine Daytime Emmys and a Lifetime Achievement Emmy in 1996.

    MSNBC claimed Donahue’s ratings were too low to justify keeping the show on the air, even though Donahue was the highest rated show on MSNBC at the time it was canceled and beat out Chris Matthews‘s Hardball, which was then on CNBC.

    After Donahue was cancelled, AllYourTV.com reported it had obtained a copy of an internal NBC memo that stated Donahue should be fired because he would be a “difficult public face for NBC in a time of war.”

    We caught up with Donahue at the campaign headquarters of Norman Solomon for Congress, in San Rafael, California, about 20 miles north of San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge.

    He had come into town to show his moving film “Body of War” and to campaign for Solomon.

  75. Darryl W. Perry

    http://www.freepatriot-press.com/2012/01/why-free-patriot-press-will-not-be.html

    Many sites, including Google, Wikipedia, reddit, WordPress and many others, will being “going black” to protest the proposed anti-piracy bills SOPA & PIPA.

    While I respect those who are “going black” in protest; I decided that Free Patriot Press will remain “live” as long as possible in an attempt to further the mission of ensuring a FREE PRESS for the FREEDOM MOVEMENT!

    In solidarity with those “going black” I have blacked out my logo and have a pop-up that asks visitors to sign an anti-SOPA petition.

    I’m using a script from http://americancensorship.org/ to black out the logo.

    From AntiWar.com
    http://www.antiwar.com/blog/2012/01/17/sopa-and-why-were-not-blacked-out/

    Antiwar.com backs the blackout protests fully, and we absolutely, unequivocally condemn this hideous bill. But we can’t join in the protest itself. There is simply too much going on in the world to give the War Party a break from our 24/7 scrutiny. And goodness knows they won’t be taking a break.

  76. LNC Presidential List

    The LNC has a list of Presidential candidates on its web pages, people who are party members and who have mostly filed with the FEC. Apparently based on the communications I have received the Executive Director, Ms Howell, is considering deleting the ones she does not like such as, I gather, Mr. Still.

  77. Kim Dead Jung Party, via Lake

    Alan Bock, RIP, Justin Raimondo, May 18, 2011
    Print This | Share This | Comment | Antiwar Forum

    Alan Bock, editorial writer and opion page editor at the Orange County Register’s editorial page, and a longtime columnist for Antiwar.com — died today, shortly after entering a hospice. He was 67.

    Alan was the author of four books: Ecology Action Guide (1970), The Gospel Life of Hank Williams (1976), Ambush at Ruby Ridge (1995) and Waiting to Inhale: The Politics of Medical Marijuana (2000).

    [Lake: and in May 2012, in or out of Libertarian County, California, will there be a remembrance ??????]

  78. paulie Post author

    Alan Bock, editorial writer and opion page editor at the Orange County Register’s editorial page, and a longtime columnist for Antiwar.com — died today, shortly after entering a hospice. He was 67.

    Sad to hear this. He’ll be missed.

  79. J. W. Evans

    It seems Ron Paul’s campaign is going to court with the John Doe behind NHLiberty4Paul. They’re taking a stand against those who have fun at his campaign’s expense.

    Also, yes. They can do this, as YouTube provides them with the information they need.

    I’m also interviewing Boston Tea Party’s own Tiffany Briscoe.
    I hope to have the interview up on my own site within a week, and I’ll more then gladly forward it over to IPR.

  80. paulie Post author

    I’m also interviewing Boston Tea Party’s own Tiffany Briscoe.
    I hope to have the interview up on my own site within a week, and I’ll more then gladly forward it over to IPR.

    Looking forward to it. She never responded when I tried to contact her.

  81. Hugh Mungus Fungus

    The Senate Republican quorum
    Mistakenly broke with decorum
    When they went out en masse
    And got fucked up the ass
    ‘Cause they wanted to vote with Santorum.

  82. Kim Dead Jung Party, via Lake

    Officers hustled William H. Drummond, 58, of Kansas City, into the courthouse atrium.

    “I have a right to be here,” he yelled. “This is my courthouse.”

    A spokesman for the U.S. Marshal’s Service said that rally organizers had agreed to keep most of the participants across the street to keep from blocking access to the courthouse.

    A spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office said Drummond was ticketed for failing to obey a lawful order, given a May 11 court date and released.

    Move to Amend, which organized the protests nationwide, plans another local program Saturday, the second anniversary of the court’s ruling.

    Scheduled for All Souls Unitarian Universalist Church at 4501 Walnut Street from 5-7 p.m., the gathering will feature a satirical wedding between a person and a corporation.

    To contact Mark Morris, call 816-234-4310 or send email mmorris@kcstar.com.

    [Lake: hate Occupy, so did the Chinese Central Committee in 1989 .........]

  83. LP Pres Campaigns raise $

    George Phillies notes:

    And here is what our best-funded campaigns had raised through the end of the year before the election, i.e., 1995, 1999, 2003, 2007, 2011. (Johnson data is complete only through October). Information prior to 1993 is not available to me. Dollar numbers have been brought forward to 2012 dollars using a standard deflator factor.

    Browne 2000 $1,118,400
    Browne 1996 $ 761,000
    Johnson 2012 $ 416,000
    Phillies 2008 $ 79,230
    Nolan 2004 $ 54,000

  84. Rob Banks

    So, even if Johnson raised zero in the last three months of 2011, we’re a good chunk of the way back to ’96-’00 levels?

    And, is that supposed to be a bad thing?

  85. George Phillies

    I didn’t say it was a good thing or a bad thing. It is a thing thing.

    However, raising money as a Republican and as a Libertarian are not the same thing.

    There is also the matter of campaign debts, but I will cover that when I have the end of year numbers.

  86. George Phillies

    @150

    Said differently, it does not occur to me that the money Johnson raised as a Republican is at all indicative of whether or not we are back to 1996 and 2000 levels. Browne raised his money as a Libertarian.

  87. Peter Orvetti

    Yes, but as Dr. Phillies knows better than anyone, Browne’s team spent almost all its time on fundraising, cynically issuing big promises — 7% in the N.H. GOP primary! — in order to entice donors, while doing nothing to achieve those goals.

  88. Be Rational

    @20 Streets and Roads are not “public goods” and the government has no business in providing them because they are not needed anymore than Beanie Babies are public goods that must be provided by government.

    To get an efficient, non-polluting transportation system requires elimination of the falacy that we need roads at all.

    There are hundreds of transportation and infrastructure alternatives available that can and would be constructed in a free market.

    A privatized, free market system of infrastructure development would be far more efficient and non-polluting and would elicit more private investment than the amount of funds the public system is able to steal and squander under the present Geo-fascist paradigm.

    We must repeal all taxes on land, property and income and eliminate the provision of all services by local governments – especially roads, sewage, trash and the like.

    A tax on land causes more economic distortion, is more coercive and a greater threat to liberty than any other tax used to provide the same amount of revenue.

  89. Darryl W. Perry

    http://www.freepatriot-press.com/2012/01/congress-shelves-but-does-not-kill-sopa.html

    Mass action on January 18, 2012 won a small victory for opponents of the internet censorship bills SOPA and PIPA. Many websites “blacked out” in protest and asked visitors to sign an online petition. Google reports that 4.5 million people added their name to an online petition to Congress to oppose internet censorship. Possibly in response to these actions, Lamar Smith, the main sponsor of SOPA, announced on Friday that he would delay further action on the bill. The Washington Post reports, “The action by Rep. Lamar Smith (R-Tex.) on the Stop Online Piracy Act came a couple of hours after Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said that he would delay a cloture vote on a similar Senate bill, the Protect IP (Intellectual Property) Act.”

    Neither Reid nor Smith said that they would not attempt to add the text of SOPA or PIPA into another piece of legislation with a better chance of passing. In fact, it is not unusual for Congress to combine unpopular proposals to legislation that is almost guaranteed to pass. DownsizeDC reports, “The REAL ID Act is a perfect example of how Congressional leaders pass laws that lack majority support. This bill created a scheme Americans have always opposed — a national ID card. This idea had so little support that it couldn’t even be brought to a vote in the Senate. Yet , Congressional leaders got it passed anyway, by attaching it to a bill Senators were afraid to oppose — the ‘Emergency, Supplemental Appropriations Act for Defense, the Global War on Terror, and Tsunami Relief.’ (May, 2005)” In similar fashion, a provision to ban online gambling was added into a port security bill.

    Voters could lobby their so called “Representatives” on every piece of legislation. However, since Congress doesn’t have time to read bills before voting – and sometimes before debate; voters certainly don’t have time to read the bills AND lobby Congress. However, there is an easier way to get Congress to 1) know what they’re voting for (or against); 2) not combine multiple pieces of legislation; and 3) no longer hide the true subjects of their bills behind propagandistic titles such as the “USA PATRIOT Act,” the “Protect America Act,” or the “No Child Left Behind Act.”

    I urge you to contact your Congressional representatives asking, nay demanding, they introduce and pass the bills of the DownsizeDC Agenda. The DownsizeDC Agenda consists of the Read the Bills Act, One Subject at a Time Act, Write the Laws Act, Enumerated Powers Act, Free Competition in Currency Act and proposals to have Congress “Cap the Debt” and Fight Deficit Spending.

  90. Brian Holtz

    If anyone here is lacking a macroeconomics textbook and thus is confused about whether Beanie Babies meet the textbook definition of “public goods”, feel free to consult http://libertarianmajority.net/public-and-private-goods.

    If anyone here is uncertain about whether taxes on an inelastically-supplied good (like land) have the least deadweight loss, feel free to read the quotes of Milton Friedman and other Nobel-prize-winning economists at http://earthfreedom.net/lvt-advocates.

  91. Be Rational

    If anyone here thinks deadweight loss has any relationship to the amount of distortion and total loss caused by the taxation of land, I suggest you will need to start over with majors in math and engineering.

    The alternatives are out there.

    You cannot understand the economics of land use alternatives without a background in engineering transportation and energy – which is why many econ only types are so confused about the world.

    Roads do not meet the definition of a public good. Roads are not needed any more than Beanie Babies. In fact, roads are cars are one of the most expensive and least efficient of all forms of transportation alternatives. But, we cannot get proper city deveolpment when we tax land and provide fascist-socialist government monopoly infrastructure of any kind.

    Government provision of roads etc – all forms of infrastructure and services – has reduced the standard of living of the people and property values in all areas from what it would be in a free market. Taxation of land to provide those services increases the land use distortion even more – this is the tax loss – it causes the land to be used for the wrong things, developed in the wrong way at the wrong times and leaves a permanent footprint that takes hundreds of years to be removed – sometimes thousands – and causes economic distortion at a cost to the economy of hundreds of times the tax collected.

  92. Deran

    On Facebook I noticed that the ACLU via their presidential election task force, ACLU Liberty Watch 2012, they have invited Gary Johnson, among several other presidential candidates, to speak at the annual ACLU Staff Convention of the Constitution and such. (Search Facebook or Google for “ACLU Liberty Watch 2012″). But they did not invite Rocky Anderson or Jill Stein. Stein is seeking the nomination of a party that does have a few state ballot lines, so I can not see why she would be excluded.

  93. NewFederalist

    Oh, oh… I just visited the Milnes for prez website and he has ratted Briscoe out to the feds!

  94. paulie Post author

    1/24 I sent an email to usdoj.gov criminal division with a allegation/complaint of election fraud and request for prompt investigation. I received an email confirmation of receipt but have heard nothing since. I fully expect the FBI to come to my house to take a statement/affidavit/complaint. I will sign such a document.

    I’m guessing that the confirmation of receipt was an automatic formality, and that there will be zero interest by the FBI in investigating a privately run election which had about 20 votes for the nomination of a party that is currently on no state ballots whatsoever.

  95. Thomas L. Knapp

    If telling lies about one’s qualifications, etc. constituted “election fraud” under the law, every candidate of every party would be in jail.

    “Election fraud” involves actually manipulating the vote. Has Milnes asserted that any such thing happened?

  96. paulie Post author

    He has indeed asserted it.

    His evidence is that A) his site got hacked the same day, with several weeks worth of his writing disappearing in the process and no visits registered for that day, which he says never happens any other day and B) he got only one vote (presumably his own) in the BTP online election.

  97. JT

    Peter: “Yes, but as Dr. Phillies knows better than anyone, Browne’s team spent almost all its time on fundraising, cynically issuing big promises — 7% in the N.H. GOP primary! — in order to entice donors, while doing nothing to achieve those goals.”

    1) A good percentage of Browne’s campaign team was comprised of people focused on doing their own jobs–which had nothing to do with fundraising.

    2) As for others who did mostly focus on raising money, GOOD. That’s an important part of a campaign, and fundraising is a skill. Of course, you should try to balance being enticing with being realistic. But people can make up their own minds as to how likely it is that a particular goal will be achieved and whether to donate money (and if so, how much).

    3) Doing “nothing” to achieve their goals? Did you follow the campaign’s activities? There were a hell of a lot of them.

  98. Darryl W. Perry

    @171
    Thanks for those links!
    Jacob Hornberger wrote in 1997

    Libertarian candidates for public office often say, “A no-compromise approach may be fine for a think tank, but it has no place in a political campaign. We have to be practical. We can’t turn voters into libertarians overnight. We need to compromise and conceal our positions if we are to have any chance of electoral success.”

    But actually, the situation is the exact opposite. Compromise and concealment are the surefire way to achieve defeat and disgrace for libertarian political candidates. An honest, forthright, competent, and confident presentation of libertarian principles holds the only chance for electoral success.

  99. johncjackson

    I don’t know if Hornberger qualifies that statement somewhere. I know that he is involved in libertarianism as far as philosophy and education go. So I’m sure he is fully aware that a no-compromise libertarian approach to electoral is a surefire loser and will likely get no traction at all unless the underlying conditions that cause people to be involved in politics and support certain candidates also change. I’m not saying it’s wrong to run more “pure” and forthright political candidates at all- just that it’s not going to make any difference on its own. Which might be the best reason NOT to “compromise.”- The “compromise candidates aren’t ever going to do jack, either. Neither will do much POLITICALLY.

  100. Fun K. Chicken

    @173 AFAIK he hasn’t been stalking any more news anchorwomen, only beating off to them in front of his TV and blogging about it. .

    @RTF article.

  101. Brian Holtz

    Libertarians should run on their principles, not away from them.

    I repeat a challenge I issued in 2008: nominate for us a YouTube video of an anarchist/radical LP candidate giving the most radical pitch you’ve ever seen offered to a general-voter audience. It’s easy to be an anarchist in the cozy little confines of Third Party Watch, but I advocate exactly the same sized government in PlatCom debates as I do in local League of Women Voters debates. How many anarchist Libertarian candidates can offer video evidence that they do too?

    Still waiting…

  102. Darryl W. Perry

    http://bostontea.us/node/1091

    President Obama wants us to imagine an America that is within reach. I would rather have you imagine a world a little further down the road. The President wants “[a] country that leads the world in educating its people. An America that attracts a new generation of high-tech manufacturing and high-paying jobs. A future where we’re in control of our own energy, and our security and prosperity aren’t so tied to unstable parts of the world. An economy built to last, where hard work pays off, and responsibility is rewarded.“

    I prefer to imagine a world in which governments allow you to educate your children as you see fit, without interference. A world in which governments allow you to start and run your own business and create jobs without interference from bureaucrats. A world where you are allowed to purchase energy from any number of sources or companies that do not have special government privilege, or supply your own energy from wind or solar and be able to share the excess with your neighbors without government regulation. A world where you are able to use the currency of your choice without threat of violating a legal tender law. Such a world would have an economy built to last, where hard work pays off, and responsibility is rewarded.

    The President also said “We can either settle for a country where a shrinking number of people do really well, while a growing number of Americans barely get by. Or we can restore an economy where everyone gets a fair shot, everyone does their fair share, and everyone plays by the same set of rules.”

    If the President were serious about having an economy where everyone plays by the same set of rules; he would immediately ask Congress to revoke all government contracts, abolish the IRS, abolish the Federal Reserve which serves to protect the large banking institutions, and work with the Governors of the 50 States to abolish the use of eminent domain, abolish special privilege given to “corporations,” repeal zoning laws & abolish welfare and licensing laws which do little more than stifle the free market. A world without government interference would be a world where everyone gets a “fair shot.”

    President Obama additionally said that he will “fight obstruction” in Congress. As long as bills that create more laws, continue funding the military occupation of foreign nations, take away more rights of the people and increase spending are being proposed, I believe that obstruction is the only admirable action that any member of Congress could commit.

    In closing, the President says “[m]illions of Americans who work hard and play by the rules every day deserve a government and a financial system that does the same.” I am curious what President Obama means by this statement. I doubt that he intends to remove the special privilege given to the Federal Reserve System. I doubt he will remove government contracts and privatize all government agencies. I doubt he will ask Congress to abolish the postal monopoly that prohibits competition on delivery of first class mail. I also doubt that President Obama will request the repeal of “sovereign immunity” which protects governments from civil suits when a government (or government employee) violates someone’s rights.

    As long as there is a central bank (whether private or government run) there will be “phony financial profits” and “bad debt;” two things Obama says he wants to eliminate. If the President were serious about moving forward with a blueprint for an economy built to last; he would heed the advice I’ve already mentioned. The only way forward, is to remove the obstacles – placed by government at all levels – from the road.

  103. Brian Holtz

    @177 OK, he (says he) told his audience that the military should be privatized and taxation should be abolished. Nothing else he said went farther than our current platform. He admits: next time I want to be even more frank and upfront by just outright saying early on, “We need to abolish government.” I don’t want there to be any confusion about what exactly I’m proposing.

    Close, but what I really want is a recording of an anarcholibertarian — preferably one of the many who preach fire and brimstone radicalism to LP audiences — making a straight-up pitch for anarchism to an audience of general voters.

  104. Let the T-Rex of Talk Radio Educate U

    “A Libertarian Foreign Policy” Webinar Tonight
    http://studentsforliberty.org/news/a-libertarian-foreign-policy-webinar-tomorrow/
    Webinar Wednesdays continue tonight, January 25 at 8PM. Join us for a discussion of “A Libertarian Foreign Policy for the 21st Century” to be led by Chris Preble. Check out the dedails!
    Wednesday, January 25 at 8pm (Eastern Time)
    “A Libertarian Foreign Policy for the 21st Century”
    *This webinar will be hosted LIVE from the Georgetown Hoyas For Liberty! Webinar participants will still be able to ask questions*
    Chris Preble will talk about general libertarian ideas about foreign policy, and then apply these to the most prominent foreign policy stories in the news today, including U.S. relations with countries in Asia and Europe, revolution and reform in the Arab world, nuclear weapons proliferation, and the threat posed by violent extremists such as al Qaeda. The talk will draw distinctions between libertarian approaches and that of the two dominant ideologies that guide U.S. foreign policy, neoliberalism and neoconservatism.

    @181 You need to send that to AP and Reuters it might get put on the wire by someone newly employed and not LACKIFIED yet !

  105. JT

    Peter: “Yes, I followed the activities of the Browne campaign quite closely. He never even FILED for the New Hampshire primary.”

    So you’re only referring to the New Hampshire primary? Your comment I quoted in post 169 was plural so it sound like you were talking about the campaign in general, which would be inaccurate.

    As for the New Hampshire primary itself, the Hornberger link you provided has nothing to do with Browne’s team “spending all its time on fundraising.” He claims it’s because Browne advocated a sales tax at one time, which it may or may not be. I’ve tried to find the letter online that HB wrote to LP News, and I can’t find it.

  106. Thomas L. Knapp

    BH@185,

    “Audience” is pretty straightforward. Each of the publications linked is a general circulation newspaper, ranging from small-town, to one of the top 50 newspapers in the US by circulation, to the oldest continuously published newspaper west of the Mississippi.

    Is there some particular reason why you only find one medium admissible?

  107. Brian Holtz

    My point @176 is that it’s easy to be a keyboard anarchist who tells Libertarian candidates they’re not radical enough. It’s not quite so easy to use a mic in front of a roomful of general voters and say “I want to abolish the government/state. Vote for me.” I can’t recall even hearing about a specific instance of that happening. I’d like a recording to see/hear how it’s done — especially in a setting where those general voters (or competing candidates) can respond using their own turn at the mic.

    I could take Hornberger’s complaints above a lot more seriously if we had a recording of him showing us how it’s done. I’m not saying it’s never happened. I’m just saying that “do as I do” is a far stronger case than “do as I say I would do”.

  108. Marc Montoni

    @171, Darryl Perry quoted Hornberger:

    “But actually, the situation is the exact opposite. Compromise and concealment are the surefire way to achieve defeat and disgrace for libertarian political candidates. An honest, forthright, competent, and confident presentation of libertarian principles holds the only chance for electoral success.

    Hornberger was what one might call a “sunny day radical”. As far as I could see he wasn’t so much a radical as just another opportunist.

    Hornberger resorted to “compromise and concealment” when it suited him — as I said in the link, just as any hack lawyer would when expedient.

  109. Marc Montoni

    @ Be Rational: Thanks for those comments, I agree.

    @Knapp, good stuff but remember the individual you debate with only does so on the shifting sands of his own definitions. If “two plus two equals four” were the standard in that individual’s lexicon, a conversation might be worth the effort. As things stand, however, a more useful expenditure of time might be rearranging one’s sock drawer.

    @ JT, I was around when HB suggested a national sales tax might be preferable to the current income tax, and he was roundly and loudly criticized for it. Even though as he had said it, it wasn’t necessarily a ringing endorsement of the idea; nevertheless, he abandoned the suggestion and never looked back.

  110. Darryl W. Perry

    @Holtz, I have a DVD from a 2007 Mayoral debate where I said “that sheep need leaders, people need representatives.” If you don’t believe I said it, maybe this article http://blog.al.com/jkennedy/2007/09/birmingham_mayor_bernard_kinca.html will suffice. The author was trying to claim that I should not be in the debates because I dared say that people do not need leaders.

    Do voters learn much when one fringe candidate (Darryl Perry) claims the city “does not need a leader, it needs a representative”?

  111. Brian Holtz

    Darryl, I believe you said it — I just don’t believe such a cryptic comment counts as advocating anarchism.

    My 4-year-old request repeated @176 still stands: “nominate for us a YouTube video [or other recording] of an anarchist/radical LP candidate giving the most radical pitch you’ve ever seen offered to a general-voter audience”. And yes, by “audience” I mean people in the same room; keyboard radicalism doesn’t count.

    Bonus points if you find the recording in a sock drawer.

  112. Peter Orvetti

    @186: It was not my intention to imply that Browne’s supporters and operation did no actual campaigning. I actually thought it was a very professional operation in both 1996 and 2000 — far better than the 2004 and 2008 efforts.

    I was referring to the fact that in reams of fundraising letters early in the 2000 campaign, the Browne team promised specific things would be done with money raised, with specific goals and results, and then they made a decision to radically change the strategy. That may have been justified, but it stank of bait and switch to me as an observer.

  113. JT

    Marc: “@ JT, I was around when HB suggested a national sales tax might be preferable to the current income tax, and he was roundly and loudly criticized for it. Even though as he had said it, it wasn’t necessarily a ringing endorsement of the idea; nevertheless, he abandoned the suggestion and never looked back.”

    Thanks, Mark. I doubted that HB would enthusiastically embrace an NST. Saying a tax on consumption is preferable to a tax on productivity isn’t a big deal; that doesn’t mean someone who says that loves the idea. But I know some people claimed HB was pushing for an NST, so I wanted to see that firsthand.

    Of course, even if he did push such an idea, that doesn’t prove that was why he decided not to enter the NH primary. And it certainly doesn’t show that his team generally “spent almost all its time on fundraising” while “doing nothing to achieve its goals.”

  114. JT

    Peter: “I was referring to the fact that in reams of fundraising letters early in the 2000 campaign, the Browne team promised specific things would be done with money raised, with specific goals and results, and then they made a decision to radically change the strategy. That may have been justified, but it stank of bait and switch to me as an observer.”

    I don’t think the team “promised” specific results. If his team made promises that the money would go toward specific things but didn’t use it for those things, then that’s a fair criticism. But it’s not necessarily a “bait and switch”; that implies the campaign intentionally raised money for something while knowing it wouldn’t be used to fund it. It doesn’t apply to raising money for something and then surveying the situation as it develops, deciding it would be a waste, and changing course.

    Perhaps the campaign should’ve returned all the money in that context to various people who only donated because of the NH primary, but that’s pretty difficult logistically to do.

  115. Ad Hoc

    I seem to recall Browne early on saying he was for a 5% national tax, then abandoning that stance.

  116. Kim Dead Jung Party, via Lake

    We are writing to invite your organization to participate in Occupy Peace, a weekend of planning, sharing and training, February 24-27 in Philadelphia, PA.

    It has been a little over three years since United for Peace and Justice (UFPJ) had a national strategy meeting …………

  117. just saying

    Aka Obama, the putative Democrat Presidential nominee, declined to present any documentation concerning his eligibility to the state of Georgia.

    If this holds until the general election and he is stricken from the ballot, the Libertarian and Green and other parties stand to rack up some impressive vote totals in Georgia in November.

  118. Kim Dead Jung Party, via Lake

    Comment on Bath / Brunswick Times Record [Maine] Letter as commented upon in Green Horizon:

    “One of the crucial ways in which something can be done and must be done is through politics.

    This means direct political engagement – whether, as did Hugo, work vigorously with one’s elected representatives to help craft legislation; or to yourself run for office.

    Hugo’s example shows two things: that there are people who do “get it”, who do realize that politics is a critical avenue for accomplishing a public good; and that taking such action can produce results.

    It is a small example, granted that. But it’s there and there are many other such instances.

    Can we figure out ways to spread the word, especially among young people, that getting into politics is a critical and worthwhile step to take?

    Once that step is in one’s mind, the next step is to figure out how to do it.

    One question is, can effective political engagement be accomplished through the two major parties? What is their record in the last few decades?

    Do we need a new party? Do they already exist? The answer is, of course they do. “

  119. George Phillies

    @200, I’ll be happy to bet a modest sum that Obama will be on the ballot in Georgia in November if he is the Democratic nominee as of that date, but I can’t imagine you are willing to bet the same amount against.

  120. Kim Dead Jung Party, via Lake

    “Why does Congress claim that the NDAA of 2012 did not expand the powers of the President?

    Because it is operating under the legal fiction that all of the greatly expanded powers enumerated in writing for the first time in the NDAA of 2012 were, in fact, originally granted by Congress in the original AUMF in 2001, though nowhere mentioned in that original authorization, and thus, supposedly, the NDAA of 2012 does not affect existing law and authorities or expand the powers of the President, because Congress is pretending that it meant to grant all of these newly listed powers in the 2001 AUMF, though that original authorization makes no mention of the power to use military detention, military trial, or extraordinary rendition.

    This legalistic, sophistic, “time traveling” legal fiction allows Congress to greatly expand the written scope of its AUMF, including adding, for the first time, written authorization to use military detention without trial, military trial, and even extraordinary rendition to foreign countries and entities, to include against U.S. citizens and lawful residents, while telling the American people that nothing has changed.

    Such legalistic, retroactive, “time travel” is the height of deception.

    Congress must now fix its error, and slam the door shut against any implied, interpreted, or inferred power to use the law of war on Americans.

    It must pass a clear prohibition against the use of such war powers on its own people.

    Anything less is just not good enough in the current political and legal environment, where a sitting President is now killing American citizens from his secret snuff list, based on secrete evidence.”

    Stewart Rhodes, Founder of Oath Keepers and Yale Law School graduate, Kalispell, Montana

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