Dr. Marc Allan Feldman Running for LNC At Large

—This article was originally published October 9, 2012. I am re-posting it now because the meeting during which the Libertarian National Committee will make their selection is this weekend, in Washington DC.–Jill Pyeatt
 

Posted in IPR comments (and forwarded by me to LNC list):

I would like to submit my name for nomination as candidate for the LNC at-large position and to affirm my willingness to serve.

Name: Dr. Marc Allan Feldman
Email address: marc@openivo.com

I am seeking the open LNC at-large position and will commit to attending the meetings at my own expense
I joined the National Libertarian Party in 2010 and I am a Life Member

I have never been a member of any other political party. I found that the major parties lacked principles and could not move the US in the right direction. I served as a candidate for Ohio Attorney General in 2010, enabling the LP to run a full slate of statewide candidates.

I am a practicing physician. I have been on the physician staff of the Cleveland Clinic for 14 years. Previously, I was on the faculty at Johns Hopkins for 11 years.

I have an MD degree and a Masters in Health Policy and Management from Johns Hopkins. I hope to represent and attract new LP members from the large segment of the voting public dissatisfied with the current major parties. I have the resources of funds and flexibility of time to fulfil the requirement of LNC participation. I try to be effective and brief in my communications.

I have no known potential conflicts of interest.

Prior to this, there have been nine candidate statements sent to the Libertarian National Committee’s Chairman and Secretary to fill an open At-Large Representative position. The opening became available when Wayne Allyn Root resigned from the Libertarian Party this month to return to the Republican Party. At this writing, it appears the decision will be made by the other members of the LNC at their meeting in Washington DC, November 17 and 18. There was a motion made by Ruth Bennett to make the selection via e-mail prior to the meeting, however, the measure failed.

A message to LP members interested in applying for the position can be found here .

One Libertarian party member from Delaware wrote up what he wanted to see in the replacement, which was posted as an article here on IPR: Dr. Steve Newton on LNC At-Large Opening.

Here are the candidates and their statements, in alphabetical order:

David Blau

Gigi Bowman

Jim Duensing

Paul Frankel

Mark Hinkle

Larry Hutchison

Gary E. Johnson

Guy McClendon

Carl Person

See also comments at Compilation of Candidate Statements for Open At-Large Position on the LNC

IPR will continue to monitor this race, and will add any new candidates or information as we receive it.

40 thoughts on “Dr. Marc Allan Feldman Running for LNC At Large

  1. George Phillies

    What are your positions on:

    crowd funding of party building projects?
    constructing or buying a building in the DC area?
    moving the HQ well outside DC.
    constructing or buying a building, not in the DC area?
    LNC paying for 50-state Presidential ballot access
    the current dispute in Oregon?
    Should the LNC have the task of telling staff what to do, or should they do volunteer national party-building work?
    Relative importance of outreach to young people, antiwar activists, small businessmen, Republicans Democrats?

    Should the LNC be stressing our social freedom issues (gay marriage, abortion on demand if you can pay for it) and our foreign policy issues (nonintervention), or our tax and government size issues?

  2. paulie Post author

    @5 General questions, or just for Dr. Feldman? Either way I’ll give him a reasonable amount of time to answer first as this is his thread,

  3. Steven Wilson

    @maf 2,

    You might consider a similar approach like Ruwart in trying to explain the applied science of choice in Healthcare.

    Fresh ideas can rejuvenate and get things rolling again. Thanks for the link.

  4. paulie Post author

    But perhaps I could generate a longer list of questions.

    Please do. I can post it as an article as well.

    I’ll still give Dr. Feldman first crack on his thread. If enough time goes by I’ll copy and answer on my thread and/or compilation thread.

  5. Marc Allan Feldman

    George@5
    Preface: Like you, I have a scientific background. It is important to have measurable goals and allocate resources with continual reassessment. I am happy to change my opinions when faced with convincing evidence.
    In general, the top three goals for the leadership of any organization should be:
    1. Don’t run out of money.
    2. Don’t run out of money.
    and
    3. Don’t run out of money.

    1. crowd funding of party building projects?
    It sounds like a good idea but I have not done it and I have not seen much success.

    2. constructing or buying a building in the DC area? I am a firm believer in lean organizations. The lower the expenses are, the more security. At the same time, bricks and mortar can form some of the very best opportunities for fund raising. If there is support from donors, than it could make sense.

    3. moving the HQ well outside DC. constructing or buying a building, not in the DC area?
    My first question would be what would make the best HQ team? Where would they want to be?

    4. LNC paying for 50-state Presidential ballot access
    Again, a question of resources. How bad a hit would it be to the major parties if they missed a state or two? 50 states is a great accomplishment, but I think I would prefer 44 states and a Libertarian member of Congress, if that was a choice.

    5. the current dispute in Oregon?
    I need more information to form a cogent opinion, but I do think the right path is to uphold the bylaws and the decisions of the Judicial Committee.

    6. Should the LNC have the task of telling staff what to do, or should they do volunteer national party-building work?
    The LNC has to do both. Volunteer work also has a cost, which should be recognized.

    7. Relative importance of outreach to young people, antiwar activists, small businessmen, Republicans Democrats? Should the LNC be stressing our social freedom issues (gay marriage, abortion on demand if you can pay for it) and our foreign policy issues (nonintervention), or our tax and government size issues?

    Everything is important and falls under the category of Freedom. Individual on the LNC are most effective in communicating their area of expertise. I may be most effective in discussing Healthcare. Others would have special expertise in other social or economic issues.

  6. Matt Cholko

    Dr. Feldman,

    I realize that you may not have complete information on all of the issues GP asked you about. However, your responses to the first 5 questions basically say “whatever is best” in all cases. I mean, we all want “whatever is best.” But, for purposes of this thread, we want to know what YOU believe to be the best course of action. Obviously, you can change your mind when you get new information (in fact, if appointed, I EXPECT you to do so), but just punting on every question isn’t the best way to win support here.

  7. Marc Allan Feldman

    Matt @11.
    I am not here to win anything. I do not consider the at-large position a prize. For me, it is an opportunity to serve, to contribute my time and experience to help the organization move forward. George Phillies was interested enough to ask the questions, and I took a couple hours to think about it and write my answers.

  8. paulie Post author

    OK – I’ll take a stab at it now.

    “crowd funding of party building projects?”

    Yes.

    Absolutely critical.

    “constructing or buying a building in the DC area?
    moving the HQ well outside DC.
    constructing or buying a building, not in the DC area?”

    I think buying makes sense, since the money on rent is going down a hole and creating no equity nor putting us any closer to the day when we can stop making payments.

    I think DC makes sense because media and donors take us less seriously when we are not HQed in DC. Long time party activists have told me that when the HQ was moved to Houston the party went downhill and we had to limp back to DC with our tail between our legs a couple of years later.

    This should be based on project based funding. If donors agree, it will happen.

    The possibility exists that we could outgrow the building. If so, we may want to consider additional HQs outside the DC area. How about say Austin, Denver and Los Angeles to start with? One in each major timezone.

    The possibility also exists that we could shrink,
    making the building a liability. If it is legal to do so (I’m no expert), we should get a space which can be subdivided with portions rented out to other organizations in case we have to do that.

    “LNC paying for 50-state Presidential ballot access”

    Yes, absolutely critical as well.

    I had a recent exchange on this subject on the LNC and LNC Discuss Public reflector lists.

    See

    http://groups.yahoo.com/group/LNCDiscussPublic/message/2463

    http://groups.yahoo.com/group/LNCDiscussPublic/message/2476

    http://groups.yahoo.com/group/LNCDiscussPublic/message/2485

    Giving every American who has a vote a Libertarian candidate to vote for should be our duty and having a Libertarian candidate to vote for should be a human right for everyone with the right to vote.

    “the current dispute in Oregon?”

    The LP Judicial Committee agrees with the Secretary of State. We have an affiliate with ballot access, a good sized slate of candidates, a website, and in-person meetings. The other side has none of those things.
    Recognize the active affiliate with ballot access and other hallmarks of being a party and move on.

    “Should the LNC have the task of telling staff what to do, or should they do volunteer national party-building work?”

    Is that an either-or question? LNC should exercise some oversight of staff, although we also have to be careful that we don’t get in their way too much when we do so. It can be a tough judgment call at times. We should absolutely do volunteer national party building work.

    “Relative importance of outreach to young people, antiwar activists, small businessmen, Republicans Democrats?”

    We need more outreach to all kinds of people, including but not limited to those categories.

    I have been a long time advocate of increasing our outreach most especially to the youth and those coming from the left.

    My own extensive personal research shows young people scoring about 80% libertarian on social issues, 50% libertarian on economic issues and strongly antiwar. Furthermore they know and care more about the issues on which they are most libertarian. If Ron Paul can energize these folks DESPITE being more conservative than us on several key social issues, we should be able to as well.

    Polls show we bring in about as many votes from the left as from the right.

    Yet, our organization seems imbalanced. Running conservative leaning candidates such as Barr-Root hasn’t helped. Gary Johnson has been doing a good job emphasizing left-friendly issues, but he too was very recently a Republican, which unfortunately plays into the common popular and media misleading narrative that we are a far right party.

    The media also frequently calls various right wing politicians and talk radio personalities libertarian, which does not help our cause.

    In order to come in to our own and start making real waves we need to connect better with our natural youth support demographic and get them excited about us as they have been about Ron Paul. Then and only then do we start really shaking things up.

    We need a major push at colleges, as happened during the Ed Clark campaign 1979-80.

    That doesn’t mean we should stop reaching out to small business owners and ex-Republicans, but we should tailor our emphasis more to young people and ex-Democrats/progressives than we have been.

    “Should the LNC be stressing our social freedom issues (gay marriage, abortion on demand if you can pay for it) and our foreign policy issues (nonintervention), or our tax and government size issues?”

    All of the above, but we should stress social freedom and nonintervention more than we have before for reasons I touched on in answering the prior question.

  9. Matt Cholko

    Doc,

    If you aren’t here looking for support, then what are you here for? I’ve not noticed your posts here previously.

    I like the idea of an MD on the LNC, but I’m not inclined to support a candidate on the basis of their education alone. Give me something to work with, please.

  10. Marc Allan Feldman

    To Matt@14 and others who want more information about me and my positions.

    Videos:

    A two minute video on why I ran for Ohio Attorney General.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cA6qhvIQ-eI

    My presentation at the Children of Liberty meeting in Maumee (3 minutes)
    March 15, 2010
    http://tinyurl.com/9zxjrby

    I was the only candidate to speak at the Ohio Ballot Board in Columbus in support of the at Ohio Freedom of Choice in Health Care Amendment
    April 9, 2010
    http://tinyurl.com/9ez38dk

    I participated in the Lakeland/News-Herald candidate (not a debate) interviews.
    Voters can see the entire 40-minute program where Mr. Cordray, Mr. DeWine, Mr. Owens, and I presented our views.
    August 12, 2010
    See it at:
    http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=616551B096543CA1

  11. Marc Allan Feldman

    I have had positions published in several newspapers.

    Amendment to Ohio Constitution could halt President Obama’s health care law
    Cleveland Plain Dealer: Wednesday, April 07, 2010
    http://blog.cleveland.com/letters/2010/04/amendment_to_ohio_constitution.html

    Money would be better spent on preventing rape
    Cleveland Plain Dealer: Thursday, August 26, 2010
    http://blog.cleveland.com/letters/2010/08/money_would_be_better_spent_on.html

    Allow public to check pension funds
    Columbus Dispatch: Tuesday, August 31, 2010 02:51 AM
    http://www.dispatch.com/content/stories/editorials/2010/08/31/allow-public-to-check-states-pension-funds.html

  12. wolfefan

    Hello Dr. Feldman – thanks for your participation here, your service in the past, and your willingness to servie in the future! Regarding the health care constitutional amendment in Ohio As I understand it, one of it’s consequences would be to make Medicare illegal in Ohio. If my understanding is correct, do you see this as a feature or a bug? Also, is it your position that Mississippi could have just passed a constitutional amendment in 1964 to keep segregated public schools in place? I guess these questions get at a broader question of the balance between the ideal and the achievable. Thanks in advance for your consideration.

  13. Marc Allan Feldman

    The Ohio Health Care Freedom amendment passed easily on November 11, 2011.

    I am still taking care of many Medicare patients.

    For more information about the history of the amendment and its implications, see:
    http://www.ohioconstitution.org/2010/03/22/health-care-freedom-amendment/

    Your question about Mississippi seems rhetorical. The situations are not analogous.

    Most importantly, I do not think ObamaCare acheives the goals of improving care for people or for controlling costs of care. Just the opposite.

    As I wrote:

    I am a practicing physician with training and experience in health finance and outcomes research. I know that forcing healthy, young people to buy comprehensive health insurance would not make health care more affordable. It would only provide another source of funding for the out-of-control health care system to continue its costly growth.

    http://blog.cleveland.com/letters/2010/04/amendment_to_ohio_constitution.html

  14. wolfefan

    Hi Dr. Feldman – thank you for your response. I read the link you provided. According to the text there, people cannot be compelled to participate in a health care system. It seems to me that Medicare is a health care system, at least as much as Obamacare is. What do you see that differentiates the two? (I understand that “health care system” is an imprecise term. It’s a sloppily written amendment.)

    The Missiissippi question is not intended to be rhetorical. Let me take out the racial aspect of it. Is it your position that any state can pass an amendment to it’s constitution that exempts it from federal laws and/or regulations? If so, what are the limits on this right of the state? What federal laws besides the PPACA could Ohio exempt itself from by this process? I guess I’m asking what the limits on this principle are.

    Thank you again for your participation in this thread. I’m not an LP member and will have no role in this decision, but I’m glad to learn. I also grew up in Ohio and try to pay attention to what’s going on there. (Hello, Tipp City!)

  15. Marc Allan Feldman

    Wolfefan@21.
    Many people more skilled at law than you and I put many hundreds of hours into crafting the Ohio amendment. Nothing is perfect but when you so easily denigrate something, it makes me not want to continue the discussion. You are entitled to your opinion. There are many many differences between Medicare and ObamaCare. I am not sure what you are looking for.

    The amendment does not exempt Ohio from anything. It provides evidence for the argument that the Federal law is not “necessary and proper”. The Supreme Court has a role in this determination.

    So tell me, why aren’t you a member of the LP?

  16. Andy

    “Should the LNC be stressing our social freedom issues (gay marriage, abortion on demand if you can pay for it) and our foreign policy issues (nonintervention), or our tax and government size issues?”

    I think that the Libertarian Party should talk about abortion as little as possible. It’s too divisive an issue, and there are libertarians on both sides of it.

  17. Marc Allan Feldman

    Andy,

    You may be right. I do think that there are many people in the middle who feel that abortion should be kept safe, legal, and rare. I believe that the government should have no role in encouraging, financing, or prohibiting abortion.

    Unfortunately, I know of no organization for this. Maybe it could be called Americans for Reproductive Rights and Responsibilities.

  18. Marc Allan Feldman

    Top ten reasons to vote for me.
    10. I can bring a fresh voice to the LNC.
    9. My personal views are very traditional, but I believe to impose these views on others is immoral.
    8. I am not a lawyer.
    7. I have a particular interest in conflict management and negotiation.
    6. I am a published scientist in outcomes research – finding out what works.
    5. I have never used marijuana, but I support legalization and ending the drug war.
    4. I have been elected twice as President of my national subspecialty organization.
    3. I have experience with organizational information management technology.
    2. I have real expertise in healthcare issues.
    1. I have never been, and never will be, a Democrat or a Republican.

  19. Oranje Mike

    In post 100 in the “Gary Johnson Contemplagtes Bowing Out of Politics”, Dr. Feldman wrote:

    “When we have a 16 trillion dollar debt and a 1 trillion dollar deficit, saying that taxation is theft is not only radical rhetoric, it is irresponsible.”

  20. Marc Allan Feldman

    By definition, theft is an unauthorized taking. Taxation is authorized by the U.S. Constitution.

    “The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes on incomes, from whatever source derived, without apportionment among the several States, and without regard to any census or enumeration”

    I would favor a repeal of the 16th amendment and find other ways to finance government activity. But until then, I respect the Constitution.

  21. Brian Holtz

    If the U.S. Constitution were amended to authorize the taking of, say, one’s youngest sibling for use as food, would that then not be theft?

    Why does theft become non-theft just because a (super)majority “authorizes” it?

  22. Marc Allan Feldman

    In a democracy, two wolves and a sheep take a majority vote on what’s for supper. In a constitutional republic, the wolves are forbidden on voting on what’s for supper, and the sheep are well armed. – Anonymous

    We are supposed to be living in a constitutional republic.

  23. Marc Allan Feldman

    On “Taxation is theft”.

    I never liked arguments with similes for several reasons. First off, it’s not persuasive. It may sound good to people who already believe it, but it will not move people to your side.

    Words are defined by their usage. Often people will try to add emotional impact to their argument by using a more emotionally charged simile. The problem is that over time, instead of adding emotional impact to the argument, it slowly removes emotional impact from the concept used in the simile.

    So many people have been called “Nazi” that it was humorous for Seinfeld to call someone a “soup-Nazi” or for a friend of mine to refer to themselves as a “grammar-Nazi”.

    I am a physician working as an employee of a not-for-profit organization. Taxes are withheld from my paycheck. The money is never in my account. Is it theft if it is money that I never owned? Or is it theft from the organization? Or is it theft from my patients?

    Taxation is different from theft. In many ways it is worse. Most thieves do not think they have a right to take. They take because they feel forced by their circumstances. They know they are doing wrong. They are not proud of what they do. They will deny it if they can. Those who tax feel they are right. They are proud of what they do and will tell you so.

    Taxation is a problem, but I see it as less of a problem then our national debt.

    They say that if you find yourself stuck in the bottom of a hole, the first thing to do is to stop digging.

    We need to balance the Federal budget and pay down the national debt. We need to force government to balance the budget even if it takes an amendment to the Constitution. A tax increase that pays down the debt will lead to tax cuts and more freedom for our children and grandchildren.

    I am not an economist, but by trying out economic models I think it is realistic that if we maintain current tax rates, let temporary cuts expire, close loopholes and limit deductions, dramatically cut military spending, social spending, and entitlements, we can balance the budget today. If we add a 5% Fair Tax on top we can pay down the debt from over 100% of GDP to 40% of GDP by the year 2020.

    Once we get the national debt paid down, we will be able to cut taxes dramatically and eliminate income taxes altogether.

    The national debt is one of the biggest threats to our liberty. Taxation can increase liberty if we use it strictly to decrease Federal debt.

    Increasing tax revenues along with painful across-the-board budget cuts, isn’t that what the mainstream media has labeled the “Fiscal Cliff”. Yes it is, but I would call it the “Fiscal Imperative” and if it happens I think it is the best thing to come out of government since Gridlock.

    So, if I want to balance the budget first with dramatic cuts and then increase tax revenue to pay down the debt, to preserve liberty for future generations, can I still be a Libertarian?

    I am certainly not a Democrat or Republican.

  24. Jill Pyeatt

    Are taxes theft? I’m inclined to think so. The government insists on getting a large percent of my income, and they often use it for what I consider immoral purposes. There’s no way in the world I would help to fund our murderous wars if I didn’t have to.

  25. Jill Pyeatt

    Dr. Feldman, are you going to Washuington DC this weekend? (If you are, we neeed to get your salutation correct). Anyway, good luck on the At-Large vote thing.

  26. Be Rational

    “If the U.S. Constitution were amended to authorize the taking of, say, one’s youngest sibling for use as food, would that then not be theft?” – BH

    Now there’s an idea.

    “Since excess humans consume natural resources that were already here before the humans, it’s obvious that humans are the problem.

    We should set use the George Henry system for taxation.

    Each parent could set a value at which they would sell their children and pay tax on that amount.

    If they set a price that is too low, some other individual could buy their children and eat them, or make them slaves.

    In this way, parents would be encouraged to set a fair price for their children in the marketplace and pay the fair amount of tax.

    This tax could be used to fund needed government services that we followers of the socialist George Henry deem necessary, even if the rest of you don’t like it, even though these things are actually harmful, and if they were needed and not harmful could be better provided by the free market – after all, there is no need for a socialist to be either logical or care about human rights or dignity, if we did either we wouldn’t be socialists. But we sure do like to pretend to be libertarians since we actually realize that libertarians are correct, it’s just that we can’t give up our desire to be able to steal just a bit of other people’s money – OK, actually a very large amount, but we’ll pretend it’s just a little bit – and use it for pet projects that there is no way in hell the market would provide, because (he he) nobody actually wants these things and the market would provide better goods and services that people actually do want. We might like those things better too, but we also want power (oh, yeah, I forgot about that one).” – HB

  27. Brian Holtz

    Taxation is a problem, but I see it as less of a problem then our national debt.

    Promising to tax future taxpayers is indeed worse than taxing present ones, but only if the promise is kept. Most such promises by the government should be broken. To treat them all as sacred is to give politicians a backdoor way of getting new tax revenue. They just borrow, and then let well-intentioned people do the dirty work of advocating the corresponding increase in tax revenue.

    They say that if you find yourself stuck in the bottom of a hole, the first thing to do is to stop digging.

    The digging is the spending, not the borrowing. I too have railed against the government’s debt and unfunded liabilities. But if overnight the government confiscated enough to pay off the debt, and raised taxes enough to cover its unfunded promises, then we’d be worse off, not better off.

    To protect our children from borrowing, raising taxes is not a good solution. A better solution is to encourage the belief among lenders that the government will not (indeed cannot) pay its debts.

    Taxes are withheld from my paycheck. The money is never in my account. Is it theft if it is money that I never owned?

    You owned it as soon as it was owed to you. Hijacking of deliveries in transit is still theft.

    I still don’t see how theft become non-theft just because a (super)majority “authorizes” it.

    I used to argue against the “taxation is theft” slogan, back before I realized that Geolibertania would not need any force-initating taxation. I still argue against “taxation is slavery” (but not “conscription is slavery”).

    I’m not worried that “taxation is theft” will over time make “theft” seem not so bad. Instead, I worry that “taxation” is an overly broad label. I think taxation of peaceful labor, clean production, and voluntary exchanges is in the same moral category of theft: taking the rightfully-owned resources of another for an end they did not choose.

    However, I favor fines/levies on those who pollute, congest, deplete, or monopolize the commons. I sometimes even call such levies a “tax”. However, such “taxes” do not take the rightfully-owned resources of another. Rather, they extract reparations from those who violate the rights of others.

  28. Brian Holtz

    excess humans consume natural resources that were already here before the humans

    It’s not the consuming of natural resources that constitutes aggression. It’s the polluting, congesting, depleting, or monopolizing of them that constitutes aggression.

    Didn’t you get John Locke’s memo?

    Each parent could set a value at which they would sell their children and pay tax on that amount.

    Persons are not property.

    Didn’t you get Lincoln’s memo?

  29. Be Rational

    @35 This George Henry system is much better for you. It fits your desires to force people to subsidize your wet dreams.

    As an added feature, you can tax them one final time after they die at a 100% rate. If they, or their heirs, refuse to pay, you can take the body or sell it in the marketplace. You see, then there would be zero dead weight loss, cause you could confiscate their entire weight at death.

    Henry George will be so proud of your improvements to his lunacy.

    Hurray for George Henry.

  30. Brian Holtz

    My dream is that all aggressors have to pay for the harm they cause others — including when they pollute, congest, deplete, or monopolize a commons.

    Readers can decide for themselves whether this dream is “wet”, and whether such payments constitute a “subsidy” to me.

  31. Be Rational

    My dream is that all agressors who TAX individuals who own property of any kind including land, air, water, rivers, lakes and oceans have to pay for the damage they cause by violating the individual liberty of the owners and for the damage they cause to the economy and each individual who participates in the economy through resource misallocation, malinvestment and investment in the wrong infrastructure and the subsequent economic waste caused by all such malinvestment.

    The damage caused by taxing land exceeds the total amount of the tax collected.

    There is no such thing as a natural commons. The commons that exists is a socialist concept designed to violate the liberty of individuals.

    All land and all natural resources should be privatized.

  32. Michael H. Wilson

    Be nice if we could get some decent literature for the LP and maybe get the issues section of the nation web site up to date.

    Wish in one hand and…

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