Judge Jim Gray: What is a Functional Libertarian?

James P Gray sent out an email last week to me, Paulie, and several other bloggers  that he was committing to producing a column by Thursday of each week.  I will post it here for our readers as soon as I am able to.  The article will also be published every Sunday in the Daily Pilot newspaper, which is distributed in a few cities in Orange County with the Los Angeles Times, under the heading “It’s A Gray Area.”
 

February 7, 2013
The Functional Libertarian

What is a Libertarian? In a word, Libertarians believe in Liberty – hence our name. But far from the idea that “anything goes,” Libertarians know that inherent in liberty and freedom is the requirement that people and entities at all levels of society must be responsible for their actions. So in its essence, a Libertarian believes that, with only a few specifically defined exceptions, adults should be able to live their lives as they choose, as long as in so doing they do not harm other people.

 
Although certainly no one speaks for all Libertarians, it is safe to say that most Libertarians genuinely believe there is a need for government to provide things like a military and police force to protect us from aggression from other countries and from each other, a judiciary to enforce our rights and contracts, and some regulations in the marketplace and the environment when market efficiencies are significantly lost due to the presence of factors such as free rider problems, poor information and insufficiently defined property rights. So yes, Libertarians believe in government, but we believe in smaller, less intrusive and less costly government.

 
In deciding what areas government should intercede at all, we should be mindful of the following two quotes. The first is from Henry Ford, who said: “Any man who thinks he can be happy and prosperous by letting the Government take care of him, better take a closer look at the American Indian.” The second is from Thomas Sowell, who said: “Socialism in general has a record of failure so blatant that only an intellectual could ignore or evade it.”

 
I acknowledge that, taken to extremes, the Libertarian philosophy could mean that if some people were bleeding on the street, we actually would have no legal obligation to help them unless we were the cause of their injury. None. But I was a Peace Corps Volunteer; I care about people – and so do most Libertarians and other Americans. So we will help people because we want to, but not because we legally have to.

 

So what is a functional Libertarian? It is a Libertarian who pragmatically sees government as the last resort instead of the first resort. Functional Libertarians understand that today our relationships with each other are complicated by shortages, internal and external threats and competing values, and further that both the federal and state governments have used these situations to usurp the power of the individual and in its place keep us beholden upon government. And this has continually resulted in increasing the governments’ powers, intrusiveness and expense. But since this has been going on for numbers of decades, it will take some time to evolve governments back to a smaller and more appropriate size.

 
Albert Einstein once said that “Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex. It takes a touch of genius – and lots of courage – to move in the opposite direction.” Well, as you will see, that is the direction of a Functional Libertarian.

 
Over the coming weeks, this column will discuss workable and pragmatic Libertarian solutions to many of the problems currently facing our great country. The largest problem, of course, is a failing economy, but we will also address such things as military security, job creation, the welfare system for both rich and poor, taxes, education, social security, healthcare, drug policy, immigration, the Criminal Justice System, and, most critically, the continual loss of our precious Freedoms.

 
If you agree with H. L. Mencken’s statement that most people admire those who lie to them, and detest most violently the ones who try to tell them the truth, you will not feel at home with this column. But if you want the truth, as well as sensible, pragmatic and workable solutions, this will be the place to be.

 
As we address the issues of our day, it will become clear that Libertarians are in the mainstream of American political thought today: we are both financially responsible and socially tolerant. And it will also become apparent that when we get beyond the political polarization that is going on today and focus upon Libertarian approaches, a system of good government that is simplified, straightforward, transparent and much less costly can also be amazingly effective – for everybody.

 
Thus the functional Libertarian agrees with Abraham Lincoln, who said that “You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong.” In addition, we understand, along with virtually all economists, that “Incentives Matter.” In other words, we get more of what we subsidize and less of what we tax. Today we are subsidizing bureaucracy, laziness and victimization, so we have lots of it, and are taxing creativity, success and productivity, so we have less of it. Of course no one in our country under this functional Libertarian approach will be without food, clothing, shelter or medical care because there will be a safety net. But along with those basic protections there also will always be incentives for people in every walk of life to better themselves. Why? Because that is what works.
So please stay with us to see how functional Libertarians are promoting the best ways that people can live amongst each other. You may agree with some of the suggestions and not with others, just be mindful that a discussion of respect and tolerance cannot be pursued by disrespect and intolerance. But as the weeks go by, I am confident that you will increasingly become more optimistic about how we can bring the peace, prosperity, equal opportunity and freedom back to our country that are now slipping from our grasp.

 

 James P. Gray is a retired judge of the Superior Court in  Orange County, California, the author of “A Voter’s Handbook:  Effective Solutions to America’s Problems” (The Forum Press, 2010 and the Libertarian candidate for Vice President in 2012,  along with Governor Gary Johnson for President.  He can be contacted at JimPGray@sbcglobal.net, or through his website at www.JudgeJimGray.com.

 

74 thoughts on “Judge Jim Gray: What is a Functional Libertarian?

  1. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    My favorite line: “So what is a functional Libertarian? It is a Libertarian who pragmatically sees government as the last resort instead of the first resort.”:

  2. James Babb

    Wow, what a lame attempt to redefine libertarianism as statism.

    He doesn’t believe in the initiation of force unless it’s to enforce massive monopolies on collective defense, security and dispute resolution.

    I’m surprised he didn’t include roads.

  3. Dave Terry

    I can only laugh at the predictable wince of pain from our resident radical anarchists.

    Clearly this is the best article I’ve read on IPR since I subscribed, as only another iconoclast can enjoy it. Ironically, the “radical Zionists” such as Bruce Cohen already HATE Judge Gray, so it isn’t TOO surprising to discover that the “True Believers” on the other end of the spectrum to do likewise.

    “But if you want the truth, as well as sensible, pragmatic and workable solutions, this will be the place to” find them.

    I eagerly await Jim Gray’s NEXT epigram.

  4. Zapper

    As a Radical Anarchist Libertarian who loves the Statement of Principles of the LP and believes that the Cult of the Omnipotent State is a good way to describe what we are indeed fighting against, I welcome Jim Gray and his article and wish him success with a continuing series in the same well-written, well-reasoned, moderate Libertarian tone.

    This is the kind of outreach we need to bring thoughtful individuals who are already natural libertarians into the LP. Over time, when exposed to more and more pure libertarian ideas, each libertarian can make the journey as far as he or she wishes from minarchism to anarchism. Indeed, what more should a true libertarian expect of free individuals.

    Infighting over how small to nonexistant we can reduce the state is ridiculous and counterproductive in the face of the massive, overarching and still growing fascist-socialist state we face in America today.

    We should welcome all libertarians – and just who is the perfect libertarian who can show us the absolute pure libertarian position on every issue? It certainly isn’t Murray Rothbard or James Babb – each has made errors from my viewpoint. So let he or she who is without error in Libertarian thought, positioning, and strategy cast the first brickbat.

    Thank you and good luck to Jim Gray.

  5. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    I’m looking forward to his weekly “chat” and was honored that he’s allowing me (and Paulie) to post them here. Judge Gray is clearly less radical than me, which may be why I appreciate him so much. It’s helpful for someone with a proven success record to explain how our country as it is today (Point A) can get to a more libertarian lifestyle for everyone (Point B). In addition, his name will be out there for everyone to see, which will help if he runs for president or vice-president in 2016.

  6. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    Judge Gray said ” it is safe to say that most Libertarians genuinely believe there is a need for …. some regulations in the marketplace and the environment when market efficiencies are significantly lost due to the presence of factors such as free rider problems, poor information and insufficiently defined property rights.”

    If Judge Gray were here and taking questions, I would want further explanation of what he’s trying to say here. It may be that I just happen to disagree with this statement, or maybe I’m not understanding it.

  7. Jared King

    I don’t think Jim Gray can win with libertarians. He’s definatley a great represenative of the “pragmatic” faction of the party, along with Gary Johnson. This naturally disturbs fake libertarians/statists such as Bruce Cohen, Larry Elder, Eric Dondero, etc. I seem to remember Cohen calling Gray anti-semitic on his Facebook page for meeting with CAIR but then again I’m pretty sure he calls every libertarian an anti-semite.

    But if Gray doesn’t upset these folks, this article will certainly upset the Lew Rockwell, Walter Block, Justin Raimondo purists. As it was pointed out, it’s easy to see a slight dig at anarchists, so parts probably could’ve been re-worded.

    But I have no problem with Gray’s brand of “pragmatic libertarianism” or whatever they like to call themselves. The pragmatic faction certainly needs a boost after being represented by Wayne Root for so long, and I look forward to his continued articles.

  8. Andy

    Jared King: “The pragmatic faction certainly needs a boost after being represented by Wayne Root for so long, and I look forward to his continued article.”

    The guy who was so “pragmatic” that he betrayed the Libertarian Party by resigning from it and endorsing Mitt Romney for President.

  9. Dave Terry

    JP (7) This may or may not qualify as one of those examples that Gray was referring to, but let me suggest that the issue of (a) mandatory auto liability insurance and (b) price controls on said insurance are examples of legitimate exceptions to the free market law of supply and demand, &would certainly quality as exceptions
    to the laissez-faire policies that libertarians generally expouse.

  10. Jared King

    “The guy who was so “pragmatic” that he betrayed the Libertarian Party by resigning from it and endorsing Mitt Romney for President.”

    Hence why ‘pragmatic Libertarians’ never get anywhere. When Root says the only way to be pragmatic is to support war, Israel, and Republicans unconditionally.

  11. Starchild

    Although Jim Gray uses the word with a capital-L, he seems to be discussing what it means to be a “libertarian”, not what it means to be a “Libertarian”.

  12. James Babb

    Statist “libertarians” naturally drool over anybody with credentials as a high level government employee. So much for challenging the cult. We must forget the non-aggression principle and perfect slavery.

  13. Dave Terry

    S/C (13)

    A distinction that perhaps made sense a few years ago but today, I venture to guess, nowadays, one is as specific as the other. Thirty years ago, I doubt that less than one libertarian in a hundred would have considered anarchism a sub-group of libertarianism.

  14. Steve M

    One thing to notice, is how often certain individuals, such as James Babb, resort to name calling rather then engaging in coherent discussion.

  15. James Babb

    Based on the success of the monopoly providers, we’ll just give the state a pass on collective defense and security. The US Army or the NYPD are doing such a good job, we should outlaw all competition.

    Is this what the LP now stands for? I know it must be tough for those that invested in his campaign to realize how sad this is.

  16. From Der Sidelines

    @7:

    What he’s saying there is that there is a role for government to protect individuals when they are unable to have strong property rights exercised and are unable to achieve a fully-informed consumer status in the marketplace. IOW, it is perfectly acceptable for government to regulate the privileges of businesses (that are not individuals and do not possess natural rights, let alone constitutional rights) in order to protect the rights of the individual and allow them to be properly exercised.

    A lot of libertarians would disagree with that statement, but a lot of libertarians make the fundamental error of placing the artificial entity of business on equal footing with the natural individual instead of placing it below the natural individual, yet still above the artificial entity of government. Note also that the privilege of business operation exists currently because of permission given it by government through permits and licenses, and the government itself has power to do so as delegated by (or in some cases seized from) the people, who are the natural individuals. Naturally, people can (and should) grant such power themselves as well, not relying on government to do it for them, usually by giving businesses their patronage in the marketplace. Businesses belong below the individual yet above government because while the individual is superior and the source of all delegated power and privileges, competitive business is superior to monopolistic government. Such is the result of proper decentralization of government (when done correctly) and the delegation (and revocation) of power by the People.

  17. From Der Sidelines

    @14:

    Do not confuse someone inside the beast as being part of the beast.

    Jonah was in the whale. He was not part of the whale.

  18. Dave Terry

    JB (17) ” The US Army or the NYPD are doing such a good job, we should outlaw all competition.”

    Of course, the KKK, Black Panthers and you local
    Vigilance Committee would be SO MUCH more effective in keeping the peace.

    I might surprise Mr. Babb to learn that this is what the LP has ALWAYS stood for. MOST of us would rather change the diapers than throw out the baby, or the washing machine.

  19. Dave Terry

    FDS (19) Jonah was in the whale. He was not part of the whale.

    And the whale is not the government, it is one of your competing enforcement agencies.

    Good thing we still have the right to own & bare harpoons.

  20. Dave Terry

    OOOPS! Clearly I meant to write “bear harpoons”.
    It is the wrong time of year to have “bare arms”!

  21. Steven Wilson

    Jim Gray won’t do a thing with this LNC. Gary Johnson is going on a campus tour this spring and it has a chance at branding.

    Our leadership, if we can use that word, need to stop pandering to the choir, and start listening to other customers.

    That whole big L small l crap is lame.

  22. Dave Terry

    SW (24)

    By all means, let’s stop pandering to Libertarians in the choir and start pandering to the egalitarians, military shills and brain dead anti-statists. THAT’S how you build a “BIG TENT PARTY”???

  23. Steve M

    “The US Army or the NYPD are doing such a good job, we should outlaw all competition.”

    Those are your words, James, Not Judge Gray’s.

    Those of us who supported the Libertarian Candidates for president and vice president are far from sad given the much better performance of the last pair of candidates then at least the recent previous candidates we have run.

    The Libertarian Party should stand for the people who hold enough of a collective view on the world to be a competitive party and not just what a small collection of ideologues think it should stand for.

  24. Eric Sundwall

    However one wants to “brand”, identify or play the libertarian card, the brutal electoral reality for third parties in this system remains unchanged.

    Once that fact is accepted, the mantra should be protest. And I mean like the big things. Foreign occupations, the Fed and the drug war. Judge Gray has taken exception to the latter, which is significant considering his former role in it.

    Any misgivings about the Occupations or the Fed seem muted in the context of plying for big-tentism. This is his mistake. A full ideological re-working on Liberty will not be his legacy or even at his disposal.

    Protest, protest, protest. Get some sleep at the end of the day.

  25. John Hritz

    I don’t think our definition of “functional libertarian” is very precise. From the limited usages on the web it implies a conservative that chooses to vote like a libertarian. I don’t know whether that is Judge Gray’s take.

    Looking forward to more columns.

  26. Steve M

    The Johnson/Gray campaign clearly spoke out for pulling US troops out of Afghanistan. Added to that a 40% reduction in military spending would limit future military adventures.

  27. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    I would like the LP to take a strong, unwavering stand against drones. That should be one issue we should all be able to get behind.

  28. Dave Terry

    JH (29)
    The fallacy here is in presuming that libertarian, conservative, progressive or liberal are mutually exclusive terms. They aren’t! Ergo they are by necessity, imprecise and approximate.

    From MY perspective there are only two kinds of libertarians; “functional” and “dysfunctional”
    The rest is all smoke, mirrors and wishful thinking.

  29. NewFederalist

    “The fallacy here is in presuming that libertarian, conservative, progressive or liberal are mutually exclusive terms. They aren’t! Ergo they are by necessity, imprecise and approximate.”

    As are idiot and moron?

  30. Jared King

    “I would like the LP to take a strong, unwavering stand against drones. That should be one issue we should all be able to get behind.”

    ^^

  31. Dave Terry

    NF (34) As are idiot and moron?

    Sorry, Mr. Federalist, but these ARE Mutually exclusive terms; “idiots” are people with an IQ of 0-25; “morons” are people with an IQ of 51-70.

    The group, in between (IQ of 26–50 are called
    “imbeciles”. VERY precise and specific! The unknown is; which group are you a member of?
    :>) LOL!

    Sternberg, Robert J. (2000). Handbook of Intelligence. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 978-0-521-59648-0.

  32. SteveS

    When I became a Libertarian, over two decades ago, it was for the simple reason that the Republicrats had such a distinguished track-record of deceit and violence against the people whose rights they have sworn to protect.

    Here in Pennsylvania, for example, we had a mayor who bombed an entire city block (those who know why can debate the positives and negatives forever, not the point of my bringing it up) AFTER, that same mayor gave the building project to a friend, and now, nearly 30 years later, at a taxpayer cost of over $1,000,000, those houses are STILL not right.

    The Libertarian Party, “The Party of Principle” was putting forth this notion that people could do for themselves, and that most functions of government could be replaced by the private sector.

    Why is it that we all believe this? It is because government is, by its nature, prone to corruption, and every time it is able to increase its power, the corruption associated with it increases exponentially.

    There are questions that all Libertarians must ask themselves.

    1. Do you believe government can run your life better than you can? If you answer yes, you are NOT a Libertarian.

    2. Do you believe that government has the right to use force or fraud aggressively against its own people? If you answer yes, you are NOT a Libertarian.

    3. With Freedom comes responsibility. Do you believe people are capable of living their lives in a responsible manner backed by an engrained moral code? If you answer YES, you ARE a Libertarian!

    Now, here is the question for Judge Gray Supporters.

    Given that people are going to live responsibly, why then would we want a centralized government that has done nothing other than create FAILED policy after FAILED policy, and that demonstrates repeatedly how prone to corruption it is, to be the arbiter of our lives? to be responsible for our security, and the security of our transactions?
    Think:
    Goldman Sachs
    LAPD as it handles its own retired cop
    Military who, at government direction, murders innocents using drone strikes.

    There is a better solution, a Libertarian Solution. Judge Gray has not offered this, he offers “More of the same light”

    Someone mentioned the KKK…. I don’t know about how things are where you live, but the KKK is not a threat here. People are too well armed, and their neighbors are too well armed for the KKK’s taste in targets….

    Before you decide that you need a centralized government to take care of you try to remember what that centralized government represents, and then think about the oath you believed in enough to take when you became a Libertarian.

    Sincerely,

    Steve Scheetz

  33. Dave Terry

    Good riddance, Tom. Let us know when you grow up. We’ll take you back, maybe. Also, let us know when you need fresh diapers. Send a check!

    So which party of no-government do you affiliate with now, OR are you going to hide in a cave in the mountains somewhere?

  34. Andy

    “Dave Terry // Feb 9, 2013 at 4:36 pm

    Good riddance, Tom. Let us know when you grow up. We’ll take you back, maybe. Also, let us know when you need fresh diapers. Send a check!

    So which party of no-government do you affiliate with now, OR are you going to hide in a cave in the mountains somewhere?”

    I think that Tom has given up on electoral politics. I believe that he considers himself to be a non-voting anarchist now.

  35. Dave Terry

    SS (39) “The Libertarian Party…… was putting forth this notion …. that most functions of government could be replaced by the private sector.”

    “MOST FUNCTIONS”? but not ALL functions?
    Which is it Steve?

    Does the phrase “fire is a dangerous servant and a fearful master” mean ANYTHING to you?

    Is it just POSSIBLE, that there MIGHT be very limited areas were fire or government is necessary, and MANY MORE where it is much
    more dangerous than helpful or necessary?

    “Given that people are going to live responsibly”

    ha ha ha ha ha ha! On what planet do you live?

    AND IF THEY DON’T?

    “Before you decide that you need a centralized government to take care of you”

    No one needs government to take care OF them.
    But have you considered that a very limited organized collective force which you support is necessary to protect your liberty and property?

    Do you REALLY subscribe to the “every man for himself” pathology?

  36. Dave Terry

    NF (44)
    Please consider the internal logic of what you just wrote. Why would anyone assume that “good” is an enemy of perfect, simply because we have not yet attained the perfect.

    Good is not an alternative to perfect, but a precursor. Let us preserve the good, as we attempt to procure the better and preserve the better, as we attempt to procure the perfect.

    ONE step, no, one LONG step at a time.

  37. Steve M

    One can be a libertarian if one seeks to step by step to have more freedom.

    or

    One can be a libertarian if one wants maximum freedom now, complete removal of the government damn the economic consequences and social upheaval.

    let me add one more to the SteveS’ list….

    If you believe you have the right to determine who is and who isn’t a libertarian then you are not a libertarian.

  38. FLAMETHROWING LIBERTARIAN !

    Why a safety NET for the bums and thieves ? Forced thievery is the heart of the ENTIRE criminal system !

    Thanks to the Judge for what good he has done for the LP. However when you begin to leave a paper trail you are subject to being “judged” by your readers…..

  39. Dave Terry

    Steve M is clearly NOT a libertarian but an ethical relativist. He actually believes that his own contradictory statement is reasonable. He claims that people who exercise the right to judge who is a libertarian and who is not, ARE NOT libertarian.

    He is unable to see that he contradicts his own dictum by defining who is libertarian and who isn’t.

    Typical for moral relativists.

  40. Steve M

    Dave Terry by claiming the right to decide who is and who isn’t a libertarian doesn’t understand the concept of a marketplace of ideas and clearly has reading comprehension issues.

  41. Steve M

    Dave, the thing is once you start deciding if someone has or has not passed some sort of LITMUS test that you have prescribed, you are trying to CONTROL and MANIPULATE others. Its one thing to argue your point its another to claim the right to kick others out of a group. Which I consider an act of aggression.

  42. Steve Scheetz

    Dave Terry, Please cite, for me, an example of a government agency working properly and accomplishing something that the private sector could not do cheaper and better.

    Sincerely,

    Steve Scheetz

  43. Dave Terry

    Steve M. (48)

    Does this mean that according to YOUR definition of a “libertarian” doesn’t allow for or acknowledge the ‘right of association’?

    Your allusion to a ‘marketplace of ideas’ is completely bogus. In a free “marketplace” each of us has the right to select which peaches, pears and precepts one chooses to “buy”.

    WORDS have meaning! Your relativistic idea
    that they have no meaning implies that our principles have no meaning. I DISAGREE!

  44. Dave Terry

    Steve M (49)
    You want your cake and to eat it too. Your say that my ‘Litmus Test’ is aggression against you.
    Is it not equally true than that YOUR litmus test
    aggresses against ME?

    Aren’t political groups associations of individual
    persons, voluntarily acting in unison? Are you NOW saying that members of a social group have no right to determine who joins and who doesn’t? Is this not just another form of coersion?

  45. Dave Terry

    Steve S (50)
    1. riots (racial or otherwise)
    2. lynchings
    3. brawls in bars
    4. drive by shootings
    5. bank robberies

    WHO YOU GONNA CALL?

  46. Zapper

    @53 The government causes many of the incidents under 1-5 rather than acting to prevent them. Private citizens and groups DO work to prevent them. However the government in almost every case shows up after the attack has ended, sometimes years later, sometimes the government agents or police never arrive.

    If that’s your best list, you have already lost this debate.

  47. Dave Terry

    Bug Zapper (54)
    Criminals AREN’T mosquitoes or moths.

    Of COURSE, private citizens and groups TRY to prevent them, but once the crime has occurred WHAT do they do next? (besides call cops);
    NADA!

    Of COURSE, police often show up AFTER the “CRIME” has occurred, but what do they do then?
    The take photo & forensic evidence, question witnesses, investigate the crime & make arrests.

    Perfect? NOT by a long shot! Could it be better?
    ABSOLUTELY. If law enforcement ONLY tried
    to enforce REAL crimes, they would be almost
    infinitely more effective. THAT is NOT the issue we are discussing HERE!

    Ironically, the debate is FAR from lost, since the five items I listed are significantly LESS of a threat than they WOULD be under the random vigilante groups in your anarchistic society.

    It is unfortunate, the we cannot actually experience a short period of anarchy (say 30 days) so that you could experience the thrill!

  48. Robert Capozzi

    DT, many Ls don’t seem to get the value of signalling. Law, and its enforcement, is more about dissuading anti-social and violent behavior. The rule of law hasn’t failed just because there’s been a murder.

    As a TAAAList, I can vaguely imagine a stateless configuration that would replace a state-run rule of law for most things, possibly possibly all things. I certainly would not BANK on a stateless NORAD, though!

  49. Dave Terry

    RC (56)
    I would however insist that the rule of law HAS failed if murders went one punished and simply multiplied in frequency: which I suggest WOULD
    be the case if there is no agency to prosecute the
    guilty.

    I have no idea WHAT a TAAAlist IS? I did a google search and nothing popped up. ?????

  50. Robert Capozzi

    DT, yes, ATC, no state > more murder, most likely, since humans have a reptilian mind that is highly prone to attack without the recognition that murder is “wrong” and has consequences.

    TAAAL-ism = theoretical asymptotic anarchist/applied lessarchist, which is my view.

  51. Steve Scheetz

    Dave Terry,
    “1. riots (racial or otherwise)
    2. lynchings
    3. brawls in bars
    4. drive by shootings
    5. bank robberies ”

    Well, Riots are generally caused by Government action or inaction. Frankly, if people wish to destroy the place in which they live, with the foreknowledge that nobody will hold others at gunpoint so as to finance the rebuilding project, so be it. However, I am thinking that people would be much less likely to destroy the place in which they live. Just a thought.

    Lynchings. I am not really sure when the last Lynching was, given that it does not happen, it is not prudent to keep an entity that robs people in order to maintain a bunch of corrupt politicians, bureaucrats, along with bloated failed agencies. On a side note, given that government, right now, is discussing the taking away people’s right to defend themselves, government solution is not something that I will be calling on.

    Brawls in bars. OK, I really don’t know of any brawl in any bar that was ever settled by government ever. If you do, please cite it for me.

    Drive By Shootings are a direct result of the failed “War on Drugs” over $100 billion dollars spent each year, and we have more violence, more drugs, and a better quality of drug. Law Enforcement Against Prohibition has done a great deal of research on this subject if you want to educate yourself on the subject.

    Anyway, I digress.. End the war on drugs and you will end most of the gang violence.

    Bank Robberies are hardly a job for government. Banks can buy insurance, banks can pay for more security. Problem solved. also, getting rid of government will eliminate bank favoritism where some banks have been given bailouts under the heading “too big to fail” government, of course, robbed the people to pay for this, and the odds of the people getting back what they lost as a result of government interference in the banks, the currency, etc, I would suggest that we have more to fear from government than we ever have from the little bank robber.

    Any more ideas? Oh, and by the way, you do not need to capitalize every other word.. I can read what you write just fine without your doing that.

    I look forward to your next post.

    Sincerely,

    Steve Scheetz

  52. James Babb

    Steve (50):
    “Please cite, for me, an example of a government agency working properly and accomplishing something that the private sector could not do cheaper and better.”

    Dave Terry (53):
    1. riots (racial or otherwise)
    2. lynchings
    3. brawls in bars
    4. drive by shootings
    5. bank robberies

    I have to agree with Dave’s list here. Bank robberies in the private sector are nothing compared to fiat currency schemes. And the violence of state employees will never be matched by the pathetic private sector amateurs.

  53. Dave Terry

    Independent Political Report: Third Party News
    NEW POST: American Freedom Party Leader Tom Sunic, Ph.D., Reports on Dresden 2013 Funeral March

    SS (59)
    Well, Riots are generally caused by Government action or inaction. Frankly, if people wish to destroy the place in which they live, with the foreknowledge that nobody will hold others at gunpoint so as to finance the rebuilding project, so be it. However, I am thinking that people would be much less likely to destroy the place in which they live.

    JB (60) And the violence of state employees will never be matched by the pathetic private sector amateurs

    Revisiting this open question;
    “More than 3,000 police from across Germany were called to Dresden to ensure the parallel protests did not escalate into violent clashes.

    Authorities said the night was mostly peaceful – although two officers were injured by masked demonstrators and several people were arrested.

    Do those anarchists, micro-anarchists and mini- anarchists in this group STILL maintain that the
    the “state” represented here by the German gov’t represents a greater evil than the massive riot that would have certainly occured between the 2000 demonstrators and the 3000 protestors???

    This is a serious question!

  54. James Babb

    RE: DT (61)

    So, you are asking if the German state is an evil threat?

    Hmm… Let me take a poll of my gay Jewish Gypsy friends, and I’ll get back to you.

  55. Dave Terry

    James Baby (62)

    Your response is somewhere between sophomoric and infantile!
    However, I will be waiting patiently for you to grow up and answer a legitimate adult question.

    ALSO, since I’m waiting, perhaps you could tell me how many of your gay Jewish Gypsy friends were among the 3000 protestors?

  56. Dave Terry

    addendum!

    I’m relatively certain that many of the 2000 “nationalists” who were demonstrating, would LOVE another shot at your friends. Shame on the German government for protecting your friends.

  57. Steve M

    @52 Dave Terry, actually I have no litmus test more like a sarcasm test. Thanks for showing where you stand.

  58. Steve M

    point is Dave… you unlike me, support a small group having the power to select who has voting rights within a libertarian county organization. If some one doesn’t match what you think is Libertarian, you want the power to deny them the right to participate.

    You are about control.

    I am about persuasion.

    When I fail, I fail….

    When you fail to persuade or feel threatened what are you willing to do? kick someone out? deny them participation?

  59. Steve M

    Dave, now lets say that another group of people decide to side step you and create a Libertarian Social Club more welcoming to others and they get others to join within your county… then they ask the state party for recognition….. are you going to feel threatened? or are you going to say hey its a social organization that wants to participate more at the state level… go right ahead…

  60. Dave Terry

    S&M (66)
    “When you fail to persuade or feel threatened what are you willing to do?”

    First of all, there is HELL of lot of DIFFERENCE between failing to persuade and feeling threatened! What do you MEAN by threatened?

    If I fail to persuade you I don’t feel threatened?
    As far as having a “small group” controlling who is allowed to vote, who are you referring to? As far as I know that is determined by the bylaws of
    of the State Party. I DO believe that signing the NAP and paying dues is mandatory. All else is optional.

    I have no power OR authority to kick anyone out, so I have no idea WHERE you are coming from on this point.

  61. Dave Terry

    SM (67) “Dave, now lets say that another group of people decide to side step you and create a Libertarian Social Club more welcoming to others and they get others to join within your county…”

    First I would need to know WHY they are”side stepping” the established county affiliate and WHAT you mean by “more welcoming”.

    “….then they ask the state party for recognition
    …. are you going to feel threatened? First I’d
    try to find out why they chose this tactic and attempt to work out a compromise.

    “….are you going to feel threatened? or are you going to say hey its a social organization that wants to participate more at the state level… go right ahead…

    If my previous paragraph’s solution doesn’t work, we have a problem, since only ONE county affiliate is per county is permitted; the ONLY way the other group could participate at the state level is IF the current county affiliate is
    DIS-affiliated. This would have to be voted on by the STATE party.

    I have to wonder if this is what you want. May
    I remind you that there are different aspects of being a Libertarian: you specifically mention a
    Libertarian “Social Club”. I think you fail to see that the Libertarian PARTY is a “political”, NOT
    a “social” organization. Just as OTHER “Social
    Clubs” may have a policy of “more welcoming” than a political organization.

    Do you know the difference?

  62. Steve M

    Dave,

    I don’t fail to see the libertarian party as being a political party as I don’t fail to see it also being a social organization.

    I do see your county party rules as being set up to protect the current establishment and set up to disenfranchise people whom the establishment feels threatened by (as in if enough of them challenge the establishment then they will vote the establishment out)

    If you were only interested in your own local organization you wouldn’t even worry about…

    “since only ONE county affiliate is per county is permitted”

    But you seem to want your “establishment” to be the recognized county organization within the state and you have clearly stacked the rules of your county organization to allow you to prevent challengers.

  63. Dave Terry

    Steve,

    WHERE are you getting your information from? OR Are you just making it up as you go along? Have you ever READ our bylaws? Have you ever been to Yamhill County, or OREGON?
    WHAT rules have been “stacked”?

    I don’t recall your name; have you met me? You talk as if you think you know everything I think.

    If you SERIOUSLY think that I’m disenfranchising anyone, by all means, tell me WHO the hell they ARE. I’d REALLY like to know who they are. Otherwise, you are just blowing smoke

  64. Marcel Kincaid

    “Albert Einstein”

    A very smart man … which is why he was a Socialist.

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