Paul Frankel Responds to Dr. Tom Stevens and Asks for Retraction

This afternoon, one of our writers here at IPR, Paulie, whose real name is Paul Frankel, posted an article about the current report of Region 5S to the Libertarian National Committee.  It should be noted that, in addition to his work here with us, Paulie serves as an alternate At-Large Representative to the Libertarian National Committee of another region (Region 7).

The report from the state of Pennsylvania, written by Dr. Tom Stevens, included the following paragraph: 

A slate of candidates has declared to run for party office this year against current incumbents. They mostly object to moderation on state party lists as opposed to any substantive policy positions. A number of people who support these candidates, mostly from one county, led the Vote for Nobody campaign last year, did not support Gary Johnson for President because they didn’t think he was libertarian enough, did not obtain a single petition for Gary Johnson or help in the defense of our petitions against the GOP challenge and who self-identify as anarchists. Starchild has interjected himself into the Pennsylvania LP race by endorsing the challenger as has Paul Frankel and others who are perceived to have an interest in future paid petitioner business out of Pennsylvania.

Mr. Frankel had this to say in a comment:

It is true that Starchild has endorsed Steve Scheetz for State Chair. While I am generally sympathetic to the arguments of Steve Scheetz, Ed Reagan and others supporting their slate, I have not issued any formal endorsement. As far as I can remember, the only member of that slate that I have personally met is Richard Schwarz, and I only know him very casually.

It’s entirely untrue that I have any interest in future paid petitioner business out of PA, and it is also entirely untrue that any other petitioners I know have made any endorsements in Pennsylvania. PA requires petitioners to be state residents; the only petitioners I know who live there are Andy and Kevin Jacobs and Darryl Bonner, and I have heard nothing whatsoever from any of them about endorsing any slate of candidates for LP offices – nor have I heard any such endorsements from any petitioners in any other state.

As for myself, I’m weighing my future and whether I should be a petitioner or try to transition to something else. I am inclined towards the latter.

Dr. Stevens has been informed repeatedly that my interest in PA LP controversies has nothing whatsoever to do with my past or possible future business as a petitioner (if there is any such future), and that none of my petition contacts have anything to do with my comments on these matters, yet he persists in spreading these blatant falsehoods repeatedly and has now included them in his region report for official LP dissemination and publication. I am requesting that this false information about myself and my current or former associates be retracted.

I could address quite a few other statements from Dr. Stevens in his regional report that distort the facts, but I will refrain from doing so in this email. Suffice it to say that, besides deviating from the truth, the tone and language of much of that state report (especially the next to last paragraph) is IMO inappropriate for materials that we publish at LP.org (region reports are included with meeting minutes) among other ways that this information is officially disseminated by the national LP organization.

Here is the article with the comment from earlier today.

46 thoughts on “Paul Frankel Responds to Dr. Tom Stevens and Asks for Retraction

  1. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    If Dr. Stevens has an issue with all the discussion here on IPR about his doings in the Pennsylvania LP, I’m the one who wrote the original article, although I asked for his okay before I posted his comment to the event page, that was found on Facebook. That was the article that started all this. Paulie and Starchild, although both being writers here, had nothing to do with it.

  2. Andy

    “by endorsing the challenger as has Paul Frankel and others who are perceived to have an interest in future paid petitioner business out of Pennsylvania”

    Nobody said any such thing and there were no endorsements made. This is a completely absurd statement and it has no bearing in reality.

  3. Stewart Flood

    What Stevens wrote will be posted as part of the meeting minutes of the next meeting. A retraction in advance of the meeting would be appropriate.

    Stevens should be impeached.

    Pennsylvania…please???

  4. Q2Q

    Is anyone really surprised that Dr. Stevens is lying? Holy Crap, why is this guy even running the LPPA? This guy ran against Gary Johnson, now he’s criticizing people who didn’t support Johnson. Now he’s accusing Paulie of some weird payola endorsement deal, WTF? People in PA, kick out Tom Stevens, because he’s a nut job.

  5. marzak

    Isn’t there a Tom Stevens in the NYLP who is also a pain in the ass? Are they one in the same or did he exile to Pa.?, Just wondering,thanks.

  6. Andy

    “Stewart Flood // Mar 7, 2013 at 10:24 pm

    What Stevens wrote will be posted as part of the meeting minutes of the next meeting. A retraction in advance of the meeting would be appropriate.”

    I can certainly see why Paul wants his side of the story (which is the true side of the story) to be on the record here. Nobody wants a false story in official meeting minutes which are going to be kept for public view for years to come (even if hardly anybody looks at it).

    I know that there are at least two incidents where false or misleading statements were made about me, or in reference to a situation that involved me, that made it into LNC meeting minutes. I don’t know if it is too late, but I’d like to send in counter statements to set the record straight to be added to the official record.

  7. Krzysztof Lesiak

    Tom Stevens needs to get the hell out of the Libertarian Party. Enough said. He supports bestiality and is about the craziest, most deranged nutjob to have a voice in this party. How the hell did people think he’d make a good state chair?!?!

  8. Andy

    Q2Q said: “Now he’s accusing Paulie of some weird payola endorsement deal, WTF?”

    This payola endorsement story is absurd on multiple levels. This gives out the false notion the that the LP of PA has some kind of lucrative work that it provides regularly which is so sought after, that somebody would go to the trouble to try to help somebody get elected as state chair in order to secure that work.

    The REALITY is that the LP of PA has very little money, and they may or may not do a paid petition drive in 2014, which they can not even legally start until around February or March of 2014, which is about a year from not, and once again, there is no guarantee that they will have any money in February or March, as the deadline to turn in the signatures is not until August 1st, so if they get money, it may not be until late spring or summer that they can actually pay, and this is even if they get money at all, and even if they do get money, there may be better paying work elsewhere.

    So to act as though somebody is really interested in a job that may or may not exist a year plus from now is pretty ridiculous.

    I think that there were definitely be paid petition work for the LP of PA in 2016 because it is a Presidential year and the national party will kick in money for that, but that is 3 years from now. Who knows what any of us will be doing 3 years from now? Hell, I’m not even sure what I’m going to be doing next month, never mind next year or 3 years from now.

    This also gives out the false notion that working for the Libertarian Party is some kind of really lucrative job. The reality of the situation is that the Libertarian Party is small potatoes in the world of politics, including when it comes to petition drives. There was WAY more money in the world of qualifying initiative & referendum petitions for the ballot than there is in qualifying Libertarian Party candidates for the ballot. The biggest money earners in the petition business, the ones who regularly earn 6 or 7 figure incomes (yes, there are people in the petition business who regularly earn in the 100′s of thousands of dollars, or in some cases, more than 1 million dollars, even a few million dollars, in one year off of petitions) do not do anything with the Libertarian Party, because there is so little money in it for them that it is not worth their time. Even when it comes to qualifying candidates for the ballot, the Libertarian Party is not always the highest paying gig. Sure, there is usually more money in getting the LP on the ballot than say the Green Party or the Constitution Party (I’m talking overall, as there exceptions), because sometimes there are other candidates or parties who pay more. If a person was just out for money, then their time would actually be better spent avoiding the Libertarian Party all together and pursuing deals with groups that have a lot more money to spend.

    Another thing that is ridiculous here is that even when the Libertarian Party is paying for petition signatures in 2016, and even if they are paying in 2014, and even if Paul and/or myself are still working in the petition business (which one or both of us may or may not be), I can guarantee you that there will be petition drives paying in other states during those same same time periods, so even if either of us wants the work or not, it is not as though it will be the only petition gig going on during those times, and some of the other petition drives might pay better. Neither Paul or myself are just motivated by money, we both like to work on stuff that we agree with or where we are at least neutral, but there is sure to be petition work that fits this category in 2014 and in 2016, so once again, it is not like the LP of PA will be the only gig in town (so to speak).

    I can tell you that last year Paul had little to no interest in working in Pennsylvania. Yeah, he might have gone there if certain things had come together, but it was by no means any kind of priority for him, and he did in fact have plenty of work options other places, and he had other places that he preferred to work over Pennsylvania.

    I was interested in working in Pennsylvania, and I did in fact work there last year, but it was for the Ron Paul campaign and not the Libertarian Party. I did want to work on the Libertarian Party petition in PA after the Ron Paul petitioning was over in mid February, and I did put out this offer to both the state and national party, but that was actually more for other people to work than it was for me, because I remained in PA for a little while after the Ron Paul petition drive ended, but I didn’t stick around too long as I had to go back to North Dakota to make sure that a job there got finished on time. There were other petitioners who worked on the Ron Paul petition drive in PA that would have stuck around and worked on the LP petition for longer than I would have if the petition had been made available to them. After North Dakota was finished up I ended up working a lucrative short term gig in Iowa, and I was interested in going to Pennsylvania to work on the LP petition after this, but I ended up working on the LP petition in Illinois instead. Why? It was due to the monopoly contracting deal that a certain LNC member made with a certain individual in Philadelphia (and note that this practice of monopoly contracting on a petition drive was something that the Libertarian Party NEVER did prior to the latter half of 2011 when this certain LNC member brought this Dick Cheney like practice to the Libertarian Party, much to the detriment of the party I should add). I did contact this LNC member, as well as a few other LNC members, including the National Chairman, plus I also called the State Chairman in PA, Tom Stevens about it (and Stevens never bothered to return my phone call), and I pointed out how this practice was anti-free market, and how it was bad for the party, yet nobody listened to me. I even told them that they were likely to get challenged, and that the validity would be bad because they only had non-libertarian mercenary petitioners – some of whom had little to no petitioning experience – working in Philadelphia, and that this would increase their odds of getting challenged, and that having all of the petitioners in Philadelphia was doing nothing to help their district office candidates in the rest of the state. I was ignored, but history hath shown that I was correct. I probably could have still worked PA if I had agreed to work under the monopoly contractor in Philadelphia, but I found this to be degrading and an insult. Why? Because I’ve been a party member since 1996, and I’d worked as a petitioner since 2000, and I’d already proven my reliability and effectiveness on multiple occasions to the Libertarian Party, plus, I’d always worked for either a state party, the national party, a county party, or an individual candidate when it came to Libertarian Party stuff, and never through some kind of mercenary middle man. If it was some ballot initiative drive where I did not know the proponent, or if if was for some candidate or party for which I had no affiliation and had never worked with before, then I would not have necessarily objected to having to work through a mercenary middle man, but I’ll be damned if I’m ever going to do that when it comes to my own freaking party. So I said the heck with it at that point, and I worked in Illinois instead, and then I worked in Alabama, and then in Maryland, and then in West Virginia, and then back to Maryland, and then back to Alabama.

    Why was I interested in work in Pennsylvania for the LP? Well, like I said above, part of it was for other good petitioners who had worked on the Ron Paul petition drive there. They wanted to work on the LP petition and they would have if not for the monopoly contracting deal. I would have worked on it at least part of the time myself (although early it it I did have to go back to North Dakota to make sure the work there got finished, plus I wanted to work on the deal in Iowa which took up about a week).

    Why did I want to work on it at least part of the time? Well, for several reasons. Part of it was tradition. PA is where I first joined the LP in ’96. PA is also where I worked on my first petition drive, which was for the LP, back in 2000. I had also worked LP in PA in 2004 and in 2008. So I had petitioned there for the LP for each Presidential election since 2000. Another reason is that I had rejoined the LP of PA (after being a member in other states since my membership in PA expired back in ’97) in 2008, so this was my state party affiliate (even though I’m not there most of the time). I’m not originally from PA, but I did live there for a bunch of years, and I’ve got family that lives there. Also, since I had worked PA before, I had several spots where I wanted to return to work, plus I had other spots in mind where I had intended to work, but where I had never made it there.

    Now did I really suffer a big loss from not having worked LP in PA in 2012. Not really. I had plenty of work elsewhere, and I know that in at least some of those places I made more money than I would have made working LP in PA anyway, so during those weeks when I was making more money elsewhere than I would have made in PA, I was better off for not being there. It still would have been nice to have been able to work there at least part of the time, just for fun, but it was not like it was a big loss for me that I did not end up working there.

    I think that the biggest loss for the LP in PA was not to myself and the other petitioners who were denied the chance to work there due to the monopoly contracting situation was not so much to us as it was to the LP of PA itself. Yes, the LP of PA was actually DAMAGED by turning away better qualified petitioners, most of whom were actually libertarians, who were ready, willing, and able to work there, in favor of mercenary monopoly contracting. So the Libertarian Party of PA, and as a whole for that matter, was damaged more by us (and note that Paul was NOT part of this group to whom I am referring as Paul was busy with another project at the time) not working on the LP of PA petition drive in 2012 than any of us were damaged by not working on it.

  9. Andy

    “Krzysztof Lesiak // Mar 8, 2013 at 12:16 am

    Tom Stevens needs to get the hell out of the Libertarian Party. Enough said. He supports bestiality and is about the craziest, most deranged nutjob to have a voice in this party. How the hell did people think he’d make a good state chair?!?!”

    So you really think that the LP of PA screwed the pooch when they nominated him as Chair, right?:)

  10. Krzysztof Lesiak

    From what I remember reading on IPR, correct me if I am wrong, the state convention fell on a date when a lot of LP of PA members couldn’t make it out, right, due to a Ron Paul rally in Philly?

    Haha I get the screwed the pooch reference ;)

  11. Andy

    “Krzysztof Lesiak // Mar 8, 2013 at 1:17 am

    From what I remember reading on IPR, correct me if I am wrong, the state convention fell on a date when a lot of LP of PA members couldn’t make it out, right, due to a Ron Paul rally in Philly?”

    This is what I heard, and I’m pretty sure that it is correct.

    The LP of PA had their State Convention in April, late April I believe. I called the person who was the State Chair prior to Stevens in February, right after the Ron Paul petition ended. Their State Chair at the time told me that they did not have the petition ready to circulate, and he thought that they’d start a few weeks from them. I told him that that would be wasting valuable time, and that myself and other experienced petitioners (most of whom were Libertarians), were already on the ground in PA, and that we were all ready, willing, and able to start working on the LP of PA petition. He then said that he’d get back to me and I never heard from him. I also contacted LP national and got no response. It was a little while after this that I heard about the granting of a monopoly contract on the petition drive to a mercenary petitioner out of Philadelphia. I contacted some people with LP national several times and got ignored. Tom Stevens got elected as Chairman in late April, and I called him sometime in May. It went to voice mail and I left a message for him. He never called me back.

    If somebody had listened to me last year about the LP of PA petition drive, the entire fiasco that happened there last year with the petition drive could have been avoided.

  12. Steve M

    have any people who have been in the business of paid petitioning ever advocated higher party dues?

  13. Kleptocracy And You

    The Kleptocracy thru Romney was behind the PA RP challenge to the LP. Romney acted as if he could be competitive in states where he had no chance without major vote FRAUD. PA, MI, WI and MN have been strongly within the DP in POTUS races for over 20 years. In fact the DP has a current lock on 242 EC votes and with 270 being victory the Rs aren’t likely to hold the White House again for years. The Kleptocracy with their media control decides the matter however.

    State LP (and national for that matter) officers need to check egos at the house before they attend to LP business. Each and every member needs to work on outreach and growth. Grow the Party if success is to ever be reached.

    Nitpicking and open arguements doesn’t help outreach and growth. Some just have to “pick” at Scabs and sores to keep turmoil brewing. AGAIN not condusive to outreach and growth !

    Can’t we all just, just get along ?

    The TRUTH that you might not know is TRUTH !

    The trouble with people isn’t their ignorance-it’s the number of things they know that just ain’t so.
    - Mark Twain, American humorist and novelist

    Every 10% increase in minimum wage makes the worker 2% worse off because companies must offset increased cost with
    reductions in other parts of the “payment bundle” such as hours, bonuses, etc.
    - Albert Wessels, MINIMUM WAGES: ARE WORKERS REALLY BETTER
    OFF?

    …a 20 percent increase [in minimum wage] makes approximately 81 percent of South Carolina workers worse off than before the change.
    - James Heckman and Guilherme Sedlacek,
    REPORT OF THE MINIMUM WAGE STUDY COMMISSION

    The minimum wage law is one of the major causes of spiraling unemployment among young blacks.
    - Walter Williams, THE STATE AGAINST BLACKS

    A rising minimum wage broadens the income gap between blacks and whites, leaving black families proportionately further behind than ever.
    - Robert Meyer and David Wise,
    REPORT OF THE MINIMUM WAGE STUDY COMMISSION

    Past studies by and large confirm the prediction that higher minimum wages reduce employment opportunities and raise unemployment, particularly for teenagers, minorities, and other low-skilled workers.
    - Masanori Hashimoto, MINIMUM WAGES AND ON-THE-JOB TRAINING

    …low income workers as a group are the major victims of minimum wage legislation.
    - Keith B. Leffler, ECONOMICS OF LEGAL MINIMUM WAGES

    …the responsiveness of labor supply to wage changes seems to be greater among the disabled than among the nondisabled…
    - Andrew Kohen, REPORT OF THE MINIMUM WAGE STUDY COMMISSION

    One of the most serious effects of minimum-wage legislation is the impairment of on-the-job-training for young workers.
    - Masanori Hashimoto, MINIMUM WAGES AND ON-THE-JOB TRAINING

    …the minimum wage must reduce total income available to all members of society taken as a whole.
    - Sherwin Rosen, REPORT OF THE MINIMUM WAGE STUDY COMMISSION

    Take care of your customers and take care of your people and the market will take care of you.
    - Tom Peters and Nancy Austin, A PASSION FOR EXCELLENCE

  14. Andy

    “Steve M // Mar 8, 2013 at 2:09 am

    have any people who have been in the business of paid petitioning ever advocated higher party dues?”

    Most of the people in the paid petitioning business are pure mercenaries and have nothing to do with the Libertarian Party, and have no idea about the internal functions of the Libertarian Party.

    As for the very tiny handful of people who are Libertarians and who have worked as petitioners, I don’t know what any of these few people advocate in terms of membership dues.

    Speaking for myself, I’m actually in favor of increasing membership dues, and yes, I’d apply this to myself. Why do I advocate increasing membership dues? Because of inflation. The membership dues were set a long time ago, back in the 1980′s I believe. The value of the dollar has gone down since then due to inflation, so this should be reflected in the party membership dues by having them increased to keep up with the rate of inflation.

    I also favor bringing back the Unified Membership Plan, where the national LP splits a portion of the membership dues with the state parties. The national party is really just a fund raising mechanism, as are the state parties for that matter, but the general public is more likely to encounter the national party than they are a state party, and most of them will only think of sending a donation to the national party, plus, it is more of a hassle for them to have to have to make separate donations to the national party and then to their state party, as a lot of people prefer to do it at one time with one check or credit cared donation. Also, having some of the money go back to the states will mean that each state party will have a guaranteed budget without having to waste a bunch of time and effort lobbying the LNC for funds (and some people who’ve been elected to the LNC have this foolish idea that sending money to state parties is “welfare” and that state parties should always have to raise the money one their own, never mind the fact that the LNC is nothing more than a national fund raising mechanism, and never mind the fact that it is more difficult for the state parties to raise money due to a variety of reasons), or struggling to raise money on their own. I used the word struggling in reference to state parties raising money because that is what a lot of them do. Some of the states have more difficult ballot access laws than others. Most of the state parties lack any paid office staff. Most of the state parties lack a big list of potential donors (I don’t think that any of them have a fund raising list as big as the one that LP national has).

    I think that increasing the membership dues to reflect the amount of inflation that has happened since they were set, and bringing back the UMP (Unified Membership Plan) are both steps that would help move the party ahead of where it is now.

    Funny that you should such an odd question in relation to this thread. It sounds to me that you are asserting that since one has worked as a paid petitioner for the party, that they are out for money, so they all want the donors to have to donate more money because they are all greedy and want to suck money away from the donors.

    If I’m correct that this is what you are implying here, then I think that your reasoning is severely flawed.

    The Libertarian Party actually gets a pretty darn good deal on what it spends on ballot access as compared to what other groups spend on gaining access to the ballot. The Libertarian Party is generally paying less, and generally getting better quality work (at least when they hire actual Libertarians to do the job), as compared to a lot of other groups who utilized paying petitioners to gain access to the ballot. I can provide details to back this up if anyone is interested.

    Also, if anything, the Libertarian Party needs to spend more money on everything it does (efficiently of course, I’m not advocating wasteful spending). More advertising. More printing up party literature. More office staffers (as long as they are doing things that are useful). And yes, more ballot access. There are states where the Libertarian Party does not have ballot status right now (20 of them), and there is one state where the party has not been on the ballot since 2000 in Oklahoma. There are states where the party was on the ballot in the last election, but where the party did not have full party status and was therefore unable to run anything close to a full slate of candidates. For instance, the Libertarian Party has not had full party status in Alabama since 2002. The last time the Libertarian Party had full party status in Maine was back in the ’90′s (early part I believe). I don’t think that the Libertarian Party has ever had full party status in Rhode Island. Another thing to consider is that the Democrats and Republicans spend a lot of money on voter registration drives and get out of the vote efforts (which include door-to-door canvasing). The Libertarian Party ought to do more of this, and the party could even target certain districts with voter registration drives and/or get out the vote efforts and it could lead to electing more Libertarians to office in places where this took place. Another thing that the Libertarian Party should spend more money on is college campus organizing. The Democrats and Republicans have clubs on just about every college campus. This is because they known the value of getting people involved while they are young. The Libertarian Party needs to increase its presence on college campuses across the nation.

    So yes, I think that the Libertarian Party should raise more money, but it is not for the purpose of lining my pockets, but rather so the party can do the things that it needs to do if it every wants to get ahead.

    Once again, if I were just out to make money off of politics, I’d be better off if I had little or nothing to do with the Libertarian Party. If I wanted to “sell out” and become a scumbag mercenary who is happy to work on any tyrannical cause that pays me, I could have done that a long time ago, and I’d have a lot more money right now.

  15. Andy

    “but rather so the party can do the things that it needs to do if it every wants to get ahead. ”

    Should read ever, not every.

    I seldom take the time to proof read.

  16. Kleptocracy And You

    Raise the membership fee LOSE membership ! The LNC is already a club for the RICH, don’t raise the basis fees. Any and everyone is free to Donate any amount they choose to help. You raise the fees and you eliminate a lot of people who can (or will) hardly spare $25 now, even less at $50 or more! The numbers can grow faster with a basic $25 fee than anything higher. The LP needs GROWTH in numbers. Not a growth in fees !! In fact Student membership should be reduced to say $5 !!!

    Keep raising fees and pissed off Rs will be the only people who can afford to belong, say so long to most of the Purer Tip-Toppers on the Nolan Chart……..

    “The more laws and restrictions there are, the poorer people become.”
    - Lao-tsu, TAO TE CHING

    DONATE TODAY – http://www.LP.org/contribute

    “Monopoly favors the rich (on the whole) just as competition (on the whole) favors the poor.”
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  17. Andy

    “Kleptocracy And You // Mar 8, 2013 at 3:38 am

    Raise the membership fee LOSE membership ! The LNC is already a club for the RICH, don’t raise the basis fees. Any and everyone is free to Donate any amount they choose to help. You raise the fees and you eliminate a lot of people who can (or will) hardly spare $25 now, even less at $50 or more! The numbers can grow faster with a basic $25 fee than anything higher. The LP needs GROWTH in numbers. Not a growth in fees !! In fact Student membership should be reduced to say $5 !!!”

    How many people really can’t afford an extra $25? If somebody is really that broke, they’ve got serious problems.

    The membership dues were set a long time ago. I’m pretty sure it was back in the 1980′s. What I’m suggesting is not even really increasing the membership dues so much as it is to have them match what they were when they went into effect. Every Libertarian should grasp the concept of inflation. It is 2013. The 1980′s and 1990′s were a long time ago. The value of the dollar has gone down since then. It is time for LP membership dues to reflect this.

    I could maybe see having a lower rate to join for students, but even then, there are students who get a lot of money from their families, plus there are students who blow a lot of money on other things and could scrape together another $25 (as in if the minimum dues went up to say $25) if they wanted to do so.

    I understand that some people are unemployed or under employed, but still, the dues were set like 20-30 plus years ago, and the inflation that has occurred since then not being reflected in LP membership dues makes it more difficult for the party to function. If you want to play the game of politics then you’ve got to spend money. There’s no way around it.

  18. Andy

    “(as in if the minimum dues went up to say $25) ”

    Should read, “(as in if the minimum dues went up by say $25, which would bring them to $50)”

  19. Thomas L. Knapp

    @221,

    “How many people really can’t afford an extra $25?”

    It’s not really about whether or not they can afford it.

    It’s about whether or not they feel like what they’re getting for their money is worth it.

    Apparently not that many people do, and of those who do at first, many change their minds after a year or two.

  20. Warren Redlich

    Stevens getting the Chair in PA is just one more example of how politics is hopeless.

    How could any R support Newt Gingrich, a pathological liar and despot wannabe?

    How many Ls ignored Gary Johnson’s spending record as Gov of NM?

    And don’t get me started on Ds and Obama.

  21. James Babb

    I’d like to point out additional discrepancies in “doctor ” Tom’s report.

    “A number of people who support these candidates, mostly from one county, led the Vote for Nobody campaign last year, did not support Gary Johnson for President because they didn’t think he was libertarian enough, did not obtain a single petition for Gary Johnson…”

    The candidates in this “transparency” slate are:
    Steve Scheetz, Chair
    Ed Reagan, Eastern Vice Chair
    Richard Schwarz, Treasurer
    Ivan Glinski, Secretary

    None of these people were involved in the “Vote for Nobody” campaign. (Not that I would blame them if they were.) When he said “a number of people who support these candidates” I guess that number is one. I was involved in the “Vote for Nobody” Campaign. I did a speech at a candidates forum (where I also worked to secure a position for a Libertarian to represent Gary Johnson).

    As others have pointed out, this criticism is pretty funny coming from the Objectivist candidate for president.

    As for not supporting Gary Johnson:

    Richard Schwarz donated several weeks of full time labor in defense of the botched petition drive. His decades of experience and hard work were a substantial asset.

    Ed Reagan became active in the LP after answering Gary Johnson’s call for volunteers to defend the against the challenge.

    Ivan Glinski is an exceptional high school student who established the Mongomery County for Gary Johnson group. He served as LPPa Youth Outreach Coordinator until being fired by Tom for not endorsing him for reelection.

    It should be noted that there is no evidence that “doctor” Tom circulated a single petition for Gary Johnson.

    Oh, what is Tom’s excuse for refusing to participate in a chair candidates debate? He says he has “no interest in self-promotion,” yet he has no problem commandeering every official communication channel for reelection propaganda.

    I will also add this. Tom often accuses his opposition as being anti-LPPa. This couldn’t be farther from the truth. In fact, the worst Tom stories are not being shared to protect what’s left of the LPPa’s reputation. What has been discussed on IPR is just the tip of the insane iceberg.

  22. Richard Winger

    The Pennsylvania ballot access laws may change radically between now and the 2014 election. The pending lawsuit in federal court against the challenge system still hasn’t had a decision, but it is a very strong case. If it wins, the legislature will be required to completely revise the laws. We have our bill pending which would eliminate all petitions (and provide for convention nominations) for parties that have about 5,000 registered members.

  23. Steve M

    wow a simple question elicits a 12 paragraph answer… which basically says yes. and then argues again for higher dues to pay more people better to get more work done.

  24. Andy

    “Thomas L. Knapp // Mar 8, 2013 at 6:29 am

    @221,

    ‘How many people really can’t afford an extra $25?’

    It’s not really about whether or not they can afford it.

    It’s about whether or not they feel like what they’re getting for their money is worth it.

    Apparently not that many people do, and of those who do at first, many change their minds after a year or two.”

    If a person is not willing to recognize that party dues that were set a long time ago, and are now worth less due to the dollar losing value because of inflation, should be increased to at least keep up with the inflation that has occurred, then I’d call into question how dedicated that person is to the growth and success of the Libertarian Party.

    I’m not sure what year it was when the minimum party membership dues were set at $25, but I’m pretty sure that it was back in the 1980′s. I just went on the Inflation Calculator website from the Burea of Labor Statistics ( http://www.bls.gov/data/inflation_calculator.htm ), and I chose the year 1988 to see what $25 in 1988 (and I think that the dues were set earlier than 1988) would be equivalent to today, and it comes out to $48.66 in 2013 dollars. So I’m going to round that off to $50, and so far the sake of discussion, let’s say that the minimum LP membership dues went up to $50, and that some of that money, perhaps half of it, got kicked back to the state party (or local DC party for those that live there) from where the person donate lives (or at least where the membership is out of for those Libertarians who live on the road, or have more than one place where they reside throughout the year). This would be a simple step that every Libertarian Party member should be able to grasp the reasoning behind, and it could help grow the party by increasing the budgets for both the national party and the state party affiliates (if it was combined with bringing back the Unified Membership Plan).

    Would some people quit over having to pay a little bit more money to be a member of the party? Yeah, the party might lose a few people, but I think that a lot more people would be gained by it than would be lost. Why? Because I think that it would lead to an overall increase in party funding, and more funding means that the party could do more to attract more members.

    So I say to heck with the people who are unwilling to accept the concept that the membership dues rates were set a long time ago and have been devalued due the inflation that has taken place. I might be willing to accept a student exemption from this, but that’s about it.

  25. Dr. Tom Stevens

    STEVENS NOT SEEKING RE-ELECTION AS LPPA STATE CHAIR

    I have decided not to seek re-election as State Chair of the Libertarian Party of Pennsylvania at the Annual Convention scheduled to be held on April 27, 2013.

    I considered three factors before taking this decision.

    The first was whether I deserved a second term based on the accomplishments of the Board and the Party under my leadership. By looking at our solid record of goals achieved and by the number of individuals urging me to run, I concluded that on this count, I should run for a second term.

    Richard Winger of Ballot Access News wrote: “Tom Stevens led the Pennsylvania Libertarian Party to the greatest ballot access victory in the state party’s history. The Pennsylvania Libertarian Party’s 2012 ballot access victory was the first time any statewide minor party or independent candidate for statewide office has ever defeated a challenge backed by one of the two major parties.”

    Roy Minet, John Karr and I were designated “Libertarian Ballot Access Heroes” by LP News for obtaining 18,000 additional signatures after problems were identified with the quality of the signatures obtained during the petition drive, which was considered over when I took office as Chair.

    After a 9-week battle, with the help of 84 volunteers, the Gary Johnson Campaign, and the national Libertarian Party, we got Gary Johnson and our statewide candidates on the ballot. Gary Johnson obtained the highest vote total of any Libertarian Party Presidential Candidate in the history of the party. Rayburn Douglas Smith (LP Candidate for United States Senate), Betsy Summers (LP Candidate for Auditor General), Marakay Rogers (LP Candidate for Attorney General) and Patti Fryman (LP Candidate for Treasurer) all ran extraordinary campaigns and each received a significant number of votes over what Gary Johnson and Judge Gray got. As a result of all our efforts, the Libertarian Party of Pennsylvania once again qualified for “Minor Party” status so people can again register “Libertarian”.

    We won a series of lawsuits with decisions that will make obtaining ballot access easier in the years to come. Membership was up 87.8% from the April, 2012 Annual Convention through the end of 2012 and new LPPA County and Regional LP Chapters were formed in Bucks County, Berks County, Chester County, Monroe County, Lehigh County, Schuylkill County, Carbon County, Franklin County, Adams County, Montour County and Columbia County. Facebook Groups were also formed for at least 14 additional counties in the process of forming County Committees.

    Our new website will be up by the Annual Convention and more federal lawsuits are in the works to make ballot access easier. Communication avenues were re-established, moderation was applied, hundreds of party members now observe party business on a regular basis and all our Standing and Working Committees are fully staffed and working on real issues every day. A new Life Membership was established and donations to the party are up in every category. The many other goals we achieved have been posted elsewhere.

    The second factor I considered was whether as a practical matter, I could win re-election. I concluded this would not be a problem. The announced candidate for State Chair did not support Gary Johnson because he did not believe Gary Johnson was libertarian enough. In addition, he did not obtain a single signature for either Gary Johnson or the LPPA’s Statewide Candidates and did not volunteer a single hour to help defend our petitions against the GOP challenge but he had no problem in actively working for Ron Paul in the GOP primary. While four of the statewide candidates running against the incumbents are all active in Montgomery County, the statewide slate of candidates running for re-election come from a broad geographic region. Not one person has urged me not to run. To the contrary, I have been receiving offers of support from individuals who, despite illness and advanced age, were willing to make the trip to the Annual Convention to support me for re-election.

    The third factor I considered was whether I wish to serve another term given the anticipated continuation of the politics of personal destruction, threats to my personal well-being and harassment taking place every day. My only goal has been to build the party in numbers and strength and I am finding my ability to continue to do that has been undermined by the efforts of those who oppose a strong Libertarian Party as a threat to liberty, who don’t believe in running candidates with the goal of winning elections, who exhibit their prejudices against those peacefully living in lifestyles of their choice, who are contacting new members and dragging them into the manufactured “infighting” so they lose interest in being active, and who would rather support Ron Paul and a “Vote for Nobody” campaign than support Gary Johnson and those statewide Libertarian Party candidates nominated by LPPA delegates in convention.

    Given these circumstances, I feel that continuing to build the party to only see it torn down by radical anarchists and Toxic Libertarians is not the best use of my time and effort. Still, I will continue to help the Libertarian Party of Pennsylvania in any way I can and I will always be friends with the scores of people who have worked hard to make this year a success.

    In Liberty,

    Dr. Tom Stevens
    LPPA State Chair

  26. Andy

    Thomas Knapp said: “Apparently not that many people do, and of those who do at first, many change their minds after a year or two.”

    How do you know that not many people agree with what I said? Has a survey been taken? I’m not aware of such a survey. If a survey has been taken on this subject, what were the details behind this survey?

    I think that if I were able to make the case that I made above about both membership dues increasing to keep up with inflation, and bringing back the Unified Membership Plan, that there’d be a lot of people who’d agree with me on both issues, and I think that if I were able to make this case to the membership that I could get one or both issues passed.

  27. Andy

    “Steve M // Mar 8, 2013 at 11:02 am

    wow a simple question elicits a 12 paragraph answer… which basically says yes. and then argues again for higher dues to pay more people better to get more work done.”

    Let me think for a moment as to how many active Libertarian petitioners there are (as in ones who are Libertarians who petitioned for the LP in the last year as paid petitioners)…..

    OK, I just came up with 9 people including myself. There might be one or two others, but that’s about it, and remember, I know what’s going on and I keep up with stuff and I either know, or know of just about everyone. So there are a total of 9 people on the current list of active Libertarian petitioners. That’s not very many people, and it should be pointed out that one of those individuals just got a regular full time job outside of petitioning, and depending on how that job works out, they may not petition anymore, or may only do it on a part time basis. 3 others on that list have other odd jobs that they do and they don’t petition very often. So if I were to subtract these people off the list, that would bring the number down to 5 people, but I’m going to stick with the number 9 since these people did work as paid petitioners over the past year for the LP and I do know them to be Libertarians (and once again, this list includes myself).

    I can tell you that there were a heck of a lot more than 9 people hired to work as petitioners on Libertarian Party ballot access drives over the past year. I don’t know the exact number, but I can tell you that 9 people is only a small fraction of the number of paid petitioners that worked LP ballot access in 2012.

    I don’t know where the other 9 people stand on increasing membership dues or how those dues are allocated. I think that Paul agrees with me about this, but if he comes on here he’d have to comment himself. I’d have to contact the others and see where they stand.

    The fact of the matter is that these 9 people have little influence, and nobody has lobbied for this. Paul did get elected to the LNC but he’s an LNC Alternate, so he does not even get to vote on anything unless the region rep for where he is an alternate does not show up (and he’s also recused himself from voting on any ballot access related issues). I’m not aware of Paul bringing any resolution to the table to increase party dues or bring back the UMP or anything of the sort.

    I frankly don’t like the implication behind your question. Maybe I’m wrong, but it seems to me that you are implying that paid petitioners are lobbying for higher membership dues to they can bilk the donors for money. If this is what you are implying, this is absurd on multiple levels.

    I think that the Libertarian Party should have more money for a lot of things. I’d like to see more money come in for the party even if none of it were spent on ballot access. There are lots of things that the party could spend money on which would help fuel growth for the party. Yes, ballot access is one of them, but it is not the only one. If more money came in and it was spent advertising the Libertarian Party on television I’d be in favor of that. If more money came it and it was spent on purchasing a building that would save the Libertarian Party money on office rent in the long run I’d support that. If more money came in and it was spent on Libertarian Party college campus organizing I’d support that. If more money came in and it was spent on sending out mailers to lists of people who’d have a higher than average likelyhood of joining the Libertarian Party as dues paying members I’d support that. If more money came in and it was spent on putting up billboards advertising the Libertarian Party on busy highways or intersections I’d support that. If more money came it and it was spent on helping Libertarian Party candidates pay filing fees (in the places where they have to pay them) I’d support that. Basically, I’m in favor of more money coming in to be spent on anything that facilitates the growth and success of the Libertarian Party.

  28. Andy

    “OK, I just came up with 9 people including myself”

    I just thought of one more person who worked as a paid petitioner on LP ballot access last year who is also a Libertarian, so that brings the list to 10. However, the last time I spoke to this person it sounded like they were doing something else now and may not do any paid petitioning work in the future, so while they were active within the past year, they may drop off the active list.

  29. Steve M

    all that rhetoric makes it look like you are getting payed by the word.

    Your mistake is to think that I think the world is black and white. I don’t see it that way. I do think people who get some income from some source have their opinions colored with respect to whether or not that source of income has a larger budget or not.

    I didn’t make any judgment about whether the work being done is worthwhile or whether people should get payed for doing it.

    I am wondering if when you argue for some point where your income might color your opinion you shouldn’t state so.

  30. Thomas L. Knapp

    Andy @ 30,

    “How do you know that not many people agree with what I said?”

    I don’t know any such thing. I don’t claim to know any such thing.

    What I claimed is that apparently not very many people don’t think LP sustaining membership is worth $25.

    The evidence for that claim is that not very many people pay $25 for LP sustaining membership, and that most who do so at least once don’t continue to do so in perpetuity.

    If you sell a consumable or renewable product for $X, and not many people buy it, and a large percentage of those who buy it once don’t continue buying it, that’s the market saying “not very many people seem to think what you’re selling is worth $X.”

  31. Paulie

    Warren,

    “Not sure why Paulie is bothering to ask for a retraction. Does anyone believe anything Stevens says?”

    I meant from the official region report which will be posted on LP.org, given to any party members who show up to the LNC meeting, etc.

    Not everyone reads the comments here and on facebook etc.

  32. Paulie

    have any people who have been in the business of paid petitioning ever advocated higher party dues?

    I think they should be brought up to date with inflation. IE, $25 now doesn’t have neraly the purchasing power of $25 when it was increased to that level.

    My opinion on this is unrelated to my work as a petitioner, as far as I know.

  33. paulie

    As posted in a different thread:

    Contrary to Stevens’ claim, which as far as I know is still planned to be published in the region report and posted at LP.org, I have not issued any endorsements. I don’t know Steve Scheetz or Roy Minet and from what I do know about them they both sound like sincere, hard working activists and true libertarians.

    As far as I know neither of them is a control freak who intends to run his state party like a petty dictatorship. As others have said here there may be more candidates who are not announced yet. Also, I’m not sure that anyone in Pennsylvania cares, or should care, who I would endorse. Why would they?

    I did make my views known that LPPA would be better off without Dr. Stevens at the helm, an opinion I continue to stand by, and as far as I can tell that will be the case soon enough regardless of who wins the election.

    I trust Pennsylvania Libertarians to examine their options and make an informed choice about who should best lead their state party, and I’ll limit my involvement to providing coverage of the race to the best of my ability. Unless I learn of a pressing reason to issue an endorsement, I don’t plan on doing so. I will share my opinion if I feel like it, but unless I actually say I’m endorsing someone – I hope that the official minutes of the national and state LPs don’t put words in my mouth.


    Dr. Lark posted in the minutes that I deny Tom Stevens’ claims, so that fixed the issue for me.

  34. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    Thanks for the update, Paulie.

    The fact that Dr. Stevens chose not to correct the situation continues to speak for his character, IMO.

  35. paulie

    Dr. Lark did not feel it was his position to change the state report, but he did include my denial of the claim about me.

    I’ve also heard that Dr. Stevens may have a scheme to get nominated from the floor, so he may be just pretending not to be running again so as to avoid the campaign.

  36. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    Yes, I read where he said twice that he might be nominated from the floor. That will be an interesting convention, as will be the Nevada convention.

    I sure wish we could find out how Oregon’s Reeves convention went last weekend. No one seems to know.

  37. paulie

    Reeves won another term, according to Richard Burke on the state chairs list.

    Meanwhile, Nevada is turning away registration fees from people who are buying the registration for someone else, have an out of state address associated with their debit/credit card even if they live in Nevada now, etc. All before the deadline to register to vote LP in Nevada (30 days before the convention).

    This also seems to assume that no non-delegate observers will be allowed to attend.

  38. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    I heard there was a new secretary voted into the
    Reeves group. Do you know who it was?

  39. paulie

    Not off hand. You may want to try emailing Reeves, Burke et al. They have all commented on IPR before, so you can find their email addresses through the dashboard.

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