Open Thread for May 2013

Do you have some news concerning third-party or independent politics you’d like to share?  Is there a website, or an event IPR readers should know about?  Well, here’s the place for you.  This open thread is for a topic that might not relate to anything we’re talking about elsewhere.  It is for YOU.  And we need you!

352 thoughts on “Open Thread for May 2013

  1. Dave Terry

    Those of you who have already responded to this appeal, please disregard.

    Whistle blower Bradley Manning has been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize, and he should receive it.

    Let’s help make that happen.

    No individual has done more to push back against what Martin Luther King Jr. called “the madness of militarism” than Bradley Manning. And right now, remaining in prison and facing relentless prosecution by the U.S. government, no one is more in need of the Nobel Peace Prize.

    Alfred Nobel’s will left funding for a prize to be awarded to “the person who shall have done the most or the best work for fraternity between nations, for the abolition or reduction of standing armies and for the holding and promotion of peace congresses.”

    The intent of the prize was to fund this work. As a result of enormous legal expenses, Bradley Manning is in need of that funding.

    Click here to help him get it.

    The people of the United States and the rest of the world have learned more about the intentions of the U.S. government from Bradley Manning than from anyone else.

    “Thanks to Manning’s alleged disclosures, we have a sense of what transpired in Iraq and Afghanistan. We have an image of how Washington operates in the world,” author Chase Madar wrote in his book about Manning’s whistle blowing.

    Just a few of the results: “Thanks to those revelations we now know just how our government leaned on the Vatican to quell opposition to the Iraq War. We now know how Washington pressured the German government to block the prosecution of CIA agents who kidnapped an innocent man, Khaled El-Masri, while he was on vacation. We know how our State Department lobbied hard to prevent a minimum wage increase in Haiti, the hemisphere’s poorest nation.”

    Manning revealed a secret U.S. war in Yemen, U.S. records of massive civilian deaths in Iraq and Afghanistan, video of a U.S. helicopter attack on civilians and their rescuers in Baghdad, and facts about the corruption of numerous governments including those of the United States, Tunisia, and Egypt. In those last two nations Manning’s revelations contributed to nonviolent pro-democracy movements.

    While Manning sits in prison under dire conditions, we can let the Nobel committee know that we support his nomination for the Nobel Peace Prize.

    Among the revelations made by Manning through WikiLeaks is the extent of time and energy the U.S. State Department puts into marketing U.S. weapons to the world’s governments. We all have a better understanding of the work that is needed for peace as a result of this exposure of “diplomacy” as consisting so greatly of weapons selling.

    The Guardian newspaper and BBC Arabic detailed last week how the United States armed and trained Iraqi police commando units that ran torture centers and death squads. Maggie O’Kane, executive producer of the documentary, said: “I hope this film will be a legacy that actually says, ‘If you want to go to war, this is what war means. It means 14-year-old boys being hung up and tortured. It means men being turned on spits. And that’s called counter-insurgency. . . .’ This would not be coming to light if it hadn’t been for Bradley Manning.”

    Let’s help someone who’s earned it to receive the Nobel Peace Prize.

    sign petition @

    Please forward this email widely to like-minded friends and associates.

  2. Richard Winger

    On May 1, the 6th circuit issued a very brief opinion, saying Michigan was correct to keep Gary Johnson off the ballot. The part of the opinion on the merits of the issue itself are only two sentences long. The 6th circuit ignored so many things: (1) that Michigan let John B. Anderson on the November 1980 ballot as a minor party nominee even though he had run in the Michigan presidential primary; (2) that in all history, no presidential candidate had ever before been kept off the November ballot as a minor party nominee on the grounds that he or she had run in a major party primary. I expect the Libertarian Party to file for rehearing. This case will have a huge impact on presidential elections of the future, and it is too important to be decided by two sentences, with no oral argument permitted.

  3. Brian Holtz

    Is there anybody more irreplaceable in the LP than Richard Winger?

    Richard, do you have a plan of succession? What the heck will we do if you get hit by a bus?

    I’m not joking.

  4. paulie

    I’ve offered that myself and perhaps some others could help with BAN (or even merge it with IPR as BAN and IPR along the lines of US News and World Report), but Richard said no. The offer is open if he ever changes his mind about that, though.

  5. paulie

    Yes and no. I’ll try to keep it limited, and I’m also busy with work. If it gets in the way of work I will go cold turkey again. Also, if I’m not able to control my temper, I’ll go cold turkey again.

  6. Dave Terry

    paulie @ 8; “Also, if I’m not able to control my temper, I’ll go cold turkey again.

    Good luck Paulie!
    I’ll be here to test you…. :>)+

  7. paulie

    Well, I guess the first thing I’ll need to control is not reading Dave Terry’s comments. I suggest others follow suit.

  8. Dave Terry

    Gee Paulie, that REALLY hurts. Guess I’ll have to sulk in my cave. Oh Gee, I don’t have one.

    Can I borrow YOURS, Paulie? :>)+

  9. Oranje Mike

    The Nobel Peace Prize is a joke. I would not wish to award Bradley Manning a token prize that means nothing. Kissinger and Obama have won it. There’s no credibility to the award. Free Manning nontheless.

  10. Mike McDonald

    “The Nobel Peace Prize is a joke. I would not wish to award Bradley Manning a token prize that means nothing. ”

    It still means a lot to a lot of people. Despite the ways the committee has abused it.

  11. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    I’m sick of all the nastiness on IPR lately, and particularly from Don Grundmann. I hereby pledge to ignore him. Maybe he’ll go away and stay away if enough of us do that.

  12. Nick Hensley

    I try to put at least one news tip about RPUSA happenings and inside news. I’ll put this out: Currently a few members are looking into the legality of holding contests and raffles to raise money for national committee organizations.

  13. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    I’m getting there, Paulie. I will if things don’t settle down soon.

  14. paulie

    There’s a few people whose comments are best skipped over without being read, and if you spend any time here you can pretty much figure it out who they are. Then IPR seems much more sane all of a sudden.

  15. Concerned Citizen

    We all need to come together to bring back our country. One way is to unite under Newt Gingrich. That way we can both fight political correctness and work to balance the budget. In the words of the great libertarian and Pat Robertson follower John Lennon, “come together, right now, over me.”

  16. George Phillies

    Another way is to unite under David Weber. Weber is a better science fiction writer (compare A Rising Thunder with 1945) and has a broader and deeper historical background.

  17. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    Paulie @ 21:” There’s a few people whose comments are best skipped over without being read”. You’re right. I’m also not going to respond to those people. I’ll just ignore them.

  18. Concerned Citizen

    The most important time period to be knowledgable about is the period of time Newt Gingrich was Speaker of the House. At that time we had prosperity, a balanced budget, fewer entitlements and low gas prices. These are things we all want. That unites us. Let’s take it.

  19. Dave Terry

    Paulie @ 21: There’s a few people whose comments are best skipped over without being read”

    Looks like you WILL be needing your cave, A LOT!

  20. John Macy

    “Another way is to unite under David Weber. Weber is a better science fiction writer (compare A Rising Thunder with 1945) and has a broader and deeper historical background.”

    LOL. Good one.

    Send Gingrich to the moon!

  21. Darryl W. Perry

    MotherJones.com, Reddit.com, DailyCaller.com, EconomicCollapseNews.com, IVN.us, Examiner.com and several bitcoin related websites have run articles on my 2016 campaign within the past few days.
    Only Examiner & IVN actually interviewed me, the other articles pull from those and press releases I put out.

  22. Adam Jackson

    @29 The news coming out of the Perry campaign changes everything. Quick, call the international media! Oh…this is the international media.

  23. Steven Wilson

    Because house red has played a role in my lunch. I offer a random friday poem. If Theodore Roethke had come across CISPA or SOPA, this is what he would’ve written. Maybe.

    I double clicked
    on the inside of her thigh
    she said “I am married”

    I double clicked
    on her shoulder
    she said ” I am busy”

    I double clicked
    on her cart of roses
    she said “Turn around”

    SMILE lil pig

    Happy Lunch hour to all my friends!

  24. William Saturn

    See this, Robert Milnes has started a new website to raise donations. It includes polls for viewers to vote on.

  25. Sam Kress

    That’s not a new website, he’s had it for years. I think it was down for a while though.

  26. William Saturn

    Additionally, Milnes requested that IPR dedicate a thread for him to debate Paulie. That request was denied.

  27. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    He also wants to boycott IPR. Aren’t there other blogs he can post to? I wish we carried the importance he seems to think we have.

  28. John Macy

    JackKin-Auff,

    “Has anyone had any contact with Robert Milnes recently?”

    Mental health professionals, we hope.

  29. Dave Terry

    Jill @ 36: ” I wish we carried the importance he seems to think we have.”

    With just a couple of exceptions, I am eternally grateful that “we” DON’T!

  30. Mike Koch

    Well he’s a wacko for sure. If you want to ignore him just do it. Announcements that you will be ignoring him, especially when you make more than one…meh.

  31. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    I’m not unaware that I was making an announcement, but my goal was to suggest other people ignore him as well. I suspect many people here are as sick of hearing him say the same thing over and over, as I am.

    It is just a suggestion on my part.

  32. Mike Koch

    No doubt. But at this point it would be best to either just do it or nor, depending on what suits you personally, since I’m sure many people have made up their mind already.

  33. Krzysztof Lesiak

    I’m so fucking baked right now me and a bunch of friends got got so stoned and just walked all over the place got to mcdonalds got back it was so fucking awesome.

    legalize maurijuana

    Vote Libertarian!!!

  34. Dave Terry

    Lesiak @ 49, 50, 52, 53,

    “With just a couple of exceptions, I am eternally grateful that “we” DON’T!

    I rest my case.!!!

  35. Be Rational

    Using a zero tolerance approach to track domestic terrorists online is the only reasonable way to analyze online threats these days, especially after the Boston Marathon bombing and news that the suspects had subsequently planned to target Times Square in Manhattan, Sgt. Ed Mullins of the New York Police Department, who is also president of the Sergeants Benevolent Association, the city’s second-largest police union says. The way law enforcement agencies approach online activity that appears sinister is this: “If you’re not a terrorist, if you’re not a threat, prove it,” he says.

    That method can result in arrests of teenagers whose online activity may be more aptly characterized as stupid pranks.

    “This is the price you pay to live in free society right now. It’s just the way it is,” Mullins adds.

    *****

    Attacks on the 1st amendment, 2nd amendment … the government is out of control, police are out of control, Mullins is a fascist and doesn’t get the irony of his own statement …

    *****

    Time for the LP, the NRA and the ACLU to join forces and defend our liberty before it’s too late.

  36. Mike Koch

    Can Mullins prove that he is not a terrorist and a threat? I don’t think he can. We should have a zero tolerance approach to terrorists like Mullins, or no longer having a free society will be the price we will pay.

  37. Dave Terry

    BR@ 57; “Time for the LP, the NRA and the ACLU to join forces and defend our liberty before it’s too late.”

    Noble sentiment and admirable intentions, BUT:
    a waste of time and resources. Unlike the Revolutionary War (the last time we had a police state) Loyalists (sic) today out number us sons of liberty by 100/1 and surveillance of law abiding citizens is pervasive, not to mention the number of ‘useful idiots’ in our midst.

    Unless and until today’s freedom fighters are able
    and willing to use defensive “force and violence” to DEFEND their rights and liberties against an increasingly oppressive (and violent) government ‘apparatus’ all talk of individual liberty is just, so much talk.

    Please remember that the German soldiers who tried to kill our fathers and grandfathers were only doing their duty. The same can be said for Sgt Mullins and his fascist ilk.

    Good intentions are NOT an excuse.

    Last but certainly not least do please do NOT trust anyone you don’t know VERY personally, who write things like I just did, it COULD (and very well might) be undercover Homeland Security (i.e. Gestapo) agents.

    If noone hears from me again, you will KNOW
    what happened.

  38. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    I would say that Oathkeepers just might be the difference between this country and martial law, which almost seems inevitable now. If you don’t have an Oathkeepers group on your community, start one.

  39. May 2013 Liberty for America

    has been published.

    Note our financial report on the Johnson 2012 campaign, this time emphasizing Q3 2011.

    The lowest salary paid by Johnson approaches the largest salary every
    paid by a previous Libertarian Presidential campaign. Then there are
    the larger salaries and the much larger salaries. Most of Johnson’s
    money and money still owed, so far as we have examined in detail, went to staff salaries.

    Editorial—More Crackpots!
    Kaplan to Run for NJ Governor
    Robert Sarvis for Virginia Governor
    War, War, Glorious War!
    Where Your Money Went — LNC in April
    LNC In Action In April
    Vohra: Future of LNC Facebook Page
    Starchild on LNCC Political Leanings
    LP Nevada Cancels Its State Convention
    Neale Apologized for Not Recognizing the Issue
    Nevada Petition to LNC
    Redpath Urges $25,000 for Arkansas Ballot Access
    More State Party News
    More on Johnson 2012 Finances

  40. Dave Terry

    Jill @ 62: ” If you don’t have an Oathkeepers group on your community, start one.

    I can’t tell you how much I appreciate this life line you just threw me, Jill. I had HEARD of them, but I just assumed they were a bunch of religious kooks.

    I just joined the Oregon Affiliate and I will be actively forming one here in Yamhill County.
    THANKS AGAIN!

  41. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    Stewart Rhodes is one of the founders of Oakthkeepers. He’s a great speaker, if you ever have a chance to hear him speak. We have a very active group here in Los Angeles County, and another in Orange County. There are lots of people from several political parties who belong. This is an example of how one issue can help us reach out to others. These people definitely understand freedom and the Second Amendment.

  42. LibertarianGirl

    urban dictionary
    Joe Silvestri
    the art of needing a small pond to feel like a big fish…micro-managing with an authority complex resulting in driving people away. i.e hall monitor-junior high school .

    “did you see how many warnings the new office manager handed down ?shes a real joe silvestri when it comes taking her job way too seriously…

    the new neighborhood watch captain is goin totally joe silvestri, I got a friendly warning to make sure i replace my porchlight..

    tags: hall monitor, micro-managing , control freak , kitchen table , in charge

  43. Dave Terry

    So WHAT is the antonym for a “joe silvestri”?

    Oh yeah. a paulietician! :>)

  44. Krzysztof Lesiak

    I just want to say that a may or may not be taking a several week break from IPR. Things have just gotten so fucked up and depressing in my life that the last thing I want to think about is politics. Hopefully my absence won’t make any sort of difference. Idk. I hope to come back eventually once I get my pathetic fucking life back on track.

  45. Krzysztof Lesiak

    I really don’t know what I’m going to do I’ll see. But if I don’t show up on IPR for the next several weeks I just want to tell ya guys in advance.

  46. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    Take care of yourself, Kzrysztof. I’ve been hoping to take an IPR break, too. Maybe our other writers can post more articles. I’ll probably post several a week, but nowhere near what I used to.

  47. Krzysztof Lesiak

    Thanks Jill . I may post some articles, but I doubt it. I don’t really know. I just hope someone can keep IPR up running and continuously updated.

  48. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    I like the videos. They’re usually something I’d never find on my own.

  49. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    Here’s one from me. This is the opening of the Rolling Stones’ tour. Opening rendition of “Satisfaction” was performed by the UCLA Marching Band, including my son Marcus Stone. I know I’m being an obnoxious proud mom, but this is just too darn cool. It looks like they were having a ball.

  50. Dave Terry

    Well at least Jill posted “real music”

    not the craptracts that Paulie, et. al. provided.

  51. Dave Terry

    adendum; Whoever posted Beethoven’s Fifth ALSO
    excepted!

    How could being a proud mom be obnoxious? Even if a week early! :>0

  52. Dave Terry

    Andy: What does this information have to do with ANYTHING?

    Isn’t this a case of TMI? I figure that’s HIS business, Not ours or yours.

  53. Dave Terry

    Concerned Terry; WHAT are you concerned about?

    and is Terry your FIRST name or your LAST

  54. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    Paulie donates a lot of time to IPR. I don’t understand why people stick around if you don’t like the writers or the way we do things. Constructive critism is fine, but the name-calling and baseless accusations are a waste of everyone’s time.

    Aren’t there other blogs to hang out on?

  55. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    94 and 96. I guess they’re not so bad, but I deleted a few comments earlier because they were flat-out racist.

  56. Sam Kress

    CC 102

    The correct way to post videos is just the URL, no html or brackets. And I thought you didn’t like videos being posted, so why are you trying to post them now?

  57. Jack Knauf

    Jill @ 104… if you “chill” and paulie finally gives up on this place due to all the nastiness directed at him and Krzysztof Lesiak the wunderkind who has discovered drugs and sex are more fun than politics really flames out then what’s left?

  58. Deran

    I realize that IPR is predominantly abt libertarian capitalists, and the CP, but I really think that by letting these neonazis and bullies post their antisemitic attacks on Paulie and others, and the continued use of homophobic slurs against people; I don’t see how this builds or explains anything. Why not just delete those neonazi posts? Why allow Grundman and who ever to take over the comments with their vulgarism?

    I’m not jewish, but I find the rampant antisemitic trash talk really tedious.

    I mean, it’s not like any of the neonazis actually post comments discussing or defending their ideology, it’s just people who don’t like some of the volunteers that run IPR.

  59. Jill Pyeatt

    JK @ 111: That’s exactly what I’m trying to point out. There are plenty of other writers, but they haven’t been active lately.

  60. Jill Pyeatt

    Deran @ 112: I’m of the same opinion that the comments aren’t accomplishing anything except chasing good people away. It’s hard to know where to draw the line. I don’t think it’s up to me to do the deleting, though, so I just limit my time here for a while. I can’t help but wonder if that isn’t the goal of the anonymous poster(s), though.

  61. Deran

    @114

    Jill, yes I understand that those sort of decisions aren’t yours.

    I do think IPR could be a lot more interesting, and maybe even get some of the respect it is due (Google News, Wiki etc), if there were more room for people to feel comfortable to discuss things and not have to wade through trash talk abt them personally, or simply a level of nonsense that clogs the threads so a person really has to work to follow discussions.

    I also don’t think making all commenting dependent on moderation before it can be posted is useful either. So, I do see that it’s a conundrum.

    I’m not even saying the intraparty bickering is a bad thing, there is plenty of it on the socialist blogs I read. It’s really more the slander, and racism.

  62. Starchild

    Racism and state socialism (as distinguished from people getting together and doing things communally on a voluntary basis, which has also been called socialism in some contexts) are both forms of collectivism that are antithetical to individual liberty and justice for all.

  63. Dave Terry

    CC @ 117;

    It is nice to know that you’d prefer to be hung in a tree (as strange fruit) than live in subservience to your fellow man.

    As for me, “a pox on both your houses”!

  64. paulie

    Jill,

    Please feel free to delete racist/spam/personal attack type comments any time, no questions asked.

    I need to be up for work at 5 am (which I just got back from) so I don’t have time for bullshit.

    In case anyone gives a shit, I’m not homophobic at all but personally I prefer women. If anyone is gay, I don’t care, many of my friends are and whatever gets you through the night is all right by me. And if anyone wants to think I’m gay that is fine too up until and unless you want to have sex.

  65. Krzysztof Lesiak

    I’m back. Some great friends of mine are getting me through rough shit.

    I just want this site to grow, and that means multiple contributors. Hopefully at least 10 posts a day or so.

    And I’ve decided I’m a hardcore libertarian. I’m still 100% pro-life, but on immigration, I’m all for open borders and amnesty. We need to make it easier for good people who want to work or study to get into this country.

    I will 95% join the LP when I turn 18, as long as Paulie pays for my dues for first year. Fuck the Republican Party, not joining them…it’s a necessary evil to run in though that most people think is best. But I want to use my skills to help the LP grow, get on its leadership, really make it a viable force in American politics. Cuz it totally should be.

    I like IPR. It’s a good place to be at. The community feel is great :)

  66. Dave Terry

    Jill @ 122

    Tell Krzysztof he has to be 18 before he can use the F word on line.

    Also tell him that when he turns 18 he can change the spelling of his first name to something intelligible. :>))))

  67. Dave Terry

    Paulie @ 120; “And if anyone wants to think I’m gay that is fine too up until and unless you want to have sex.”

    Please explain how my wanting to have sex has ANYTHING to do with whether or not I think that you are gay.

    You clearly left out SOMETHING besides a closed quote mark. :>)

  68. paulie

    And again, there is no requirement to wait til you are 18. There’s also supposed to be a free membership option, although I don’t see where it exists online.

  69. Jesse Santana

    “I realize that IPR is predominantly abt libertarian capitalists, and the CP,”

    Not necessarily, it’s just a matter of who chooses to participate and how much.

    ” Why not just delete those neonazi posts?”

    Good idea.

    “I mean, it’s not like any of the neonazis actually post comments discussing or defending their ideology, it’s just people who don’t like some of the volunteers that run IPR.”

    Good point. If someone is actually a racist and wants to defend their views with reasoned arguments that should be allowed. But someone that just shows up to post bigoted slurs and attack people should be deleted.

    I don’t actually know if this person or people are really bigots, trying to be shocking, or both, but regardless it should have no place here, those posts should be deleted by all the editors.

    ” I’m of the same opinion that the comments aren’t accomplishing anything except chasing good people away.”

    True, and you should do something about it.

    “It’s hard to know where to draw the line. I don’t think it’s up to me to do the deleting, though, so I just limit my time here for a while.”

    I don’t see why you or other editors here can’t do it.

    “I can’t help but wonder if that isn’t the goal of the anonymous poster(s), though.”

    It may be exactly what it is, so you shouldn’t let them get away with it. Regardless of whether it is their intent that is exactly what they are doing.

    “Jill, yes I understand that those sort of decisions aren’t yours.”

    I don’t see why not. Whether it’s Jill, someone else, or better yet several people, someone should remove blatantly malicious, content free comments.

    “I do think IPR could be a lot more interesting, and maybe even get some of the respect it is due (Google News, Wiki etc), if there were more room for people to feel comfortable to discuss things and not have to wade through trash talk abt them personally, or simply a level of nonsense that clogs the threads so a person really has to work to follow discussions.”

    Depends on what you mean. I would suggest to only ask, not enforce, keeping threads on topic, but actively remove the trash comments we are talking about here.

    “I also don’t think making all commenting dependent on moderation before it can be posted is useful either. ”

    You should only remove comments after the fact.

    “I’m not even saying the intraparty bickering is a bad thing, there is plenty of it on the socialist blogs I read. It’s really more the slander, and racism.”

    Agreed, and again, even racism is IMO in bounds (although still repugnant) if it is an intelligent discussion and debate about its merits, but when it’s just hit and run slurs it should be taken down. And that includes the homophobic slurs too.

    “Racism and state socialism (as distinguished from people getting together and doing things communally on a voluntary basis, which has also been called socialism in some contexts) are both forms of collectivism that are antithetical to individual liberty and justice for all.”

    I agree. I think they should be allowed to be discussed, including by their proponents, if they can manage to not use slurs, and if they are actually discussing rather than just attacking people and running off.

    Just my opinion for whatever it may be worth.

  70. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    What’s everyone’s take on Grundmann, now that he’s descended into hints of physical threats? Should we be allowing that?

  71. Sam Kress

    Physical threats should definitely be taken down, but recorded first (screencap, IP etc) in case something actually happens.

  72. Dave Terry

    Jess @ 130; I don’t see why not. Whether it’s Jill, someone else, or better yet several people, someone should remove blatantly malicious, content free comments.

    As the old proverb states, “The road to Hell is paved with good intentions”. Even the Alien & Sedition Acts of 1798 (the poster child for the dangers of a paternalistic and overly protective government) was passed with “good intentions”.

    Jill @ 133: “”now that he’s devolved into hints of physical threats? Should we be allowing that?

    “HINTS of physical threats are not overt. One man’s ‘bluster” is another man’s “threat”. If we must err, let it be on the side of individual liberty.

  73. Sam Kress

    Jesse Santana @130 makes sense. Who would ever even want to read these comments if there’s more and more stuff like that posted all the time? Garbage attracts more garbage and pretty soon chokes off legitimate discussion, like weeds choking off useful plants by taking all the nutrients and sunlight.

    On the other hand, we should definitely keep moderation minimal. I think the guidelines proposed @130 make the most sense.

  74. Thomas L. Knapp

    I’ve always wondered why Grundmann isn’t just banned.

    Like Milnes and Ogle, he’s a one-note Charlie, intent on talking about one, and only one, thing (for Milnes it’s PLAS, for Ogle it is USA Parliament, for Grundmann it’s sodomy).

    And frankly, both in demeanor and quality of content, he makes those other two guys look like sterling exemplars of mental clarity and moral uprightness.

    He’s a nut, a liar and a troll.

    And yet he remains.

  75. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    TLK @ 137: I definitely think he should be banned. I’m glad someone finally said it. He contributes absolutely nothing positive, ever.

  76. Deran

    Here is my favorite economist foing a great job of explaining class in the USA. Especially how things have played out in the last 40 years or so.

    http://youtu.be/eGOA2WedIQo

    The thing about Richard Wolff is that he spent decades teaching economics, probably one of the driest topics around, in a way that is simple, clear and factual.

    And he does it through a Marxist lens, again though, with out jargon and in a simple clear and factual manner.

  77. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    …besides the fact that Grundmann is actually starting to scare me. I haven’t had an email exchange with him in over a month, yet he keeps throwing my name into his ugly comments. On the thread about the email exchange between Cody and him, Grundamann calls me Cody’s friend several times. I don’t know Cody, have never corresponded with him, and have had nothing to do ever with the Constitution Party or the CCTUS. Don is totally losing control.

  78. Alan Pyeatt

    If anyone is still interested, I posted a rebuttal to some of Brian Holtz’s arguments on the George Phillies “Crackpots” thread (pending moderation, because there are several links included). Here is the link to that thread:
    http://www.independentpoliticalreport.com/2013/04/libertarian-opinions-out-with-the-crackpots-and-a-modest-proposal-for-ending-the-drug-war/.

    Sorry to take so long, but like most of you, I have a life beyond the internet. IMO Holtz had misrepresented the Project for the New American Century’s “Rebuilding America’s Defenses” report, so I dug up a fair amount of information to support my position. I also posted the link to the report again, for anyone who hasn’t read it yet.

  79. Krzysztof Lesiak

    People who trust the government as much as Holtz piss me off so much. It pains me greatly that the LP actually has more than one person like him :/

    If I ever get elected to a high level position in the LNC, I will promote “conspiracy theories” he derides so much just to annoy the living shit out of him.

  80. Catholic Trotskyist

    Although Grundman’s commentary tends to be very repetetive, I think he has contributed to this site by bringing news and commentary from his faction of constitutionalist politics, especially regarding events in California. If Grundman is banned, Mark Siedenberg should also be banned, and both sides can start over with new representatives commenting on IPR hopefully. Although Siedenberg’s comments about homosexuality are less repetetive, his other commentary is very repetetive, and he makes so many typing mistakes that his comments are not understandable half the time. He also continually trolls Grundman and the California CP, especially with Quirk apparently switching sides. Still I would rather that neither be banned.

  81. paulie

    OK, that’s a point about Seidenberg.

    TLK, Jill, Deran: Do you want to ban Seidenberg too, or only Grundmann?

    Anyone else want to weigh in on this?

  82. Deran

    I tend to think the Seattle weekly newspaper, The Stranger, is part of the problem, but Seattle City Council candidate, Kshama Sawant (she’s an economics teacher and activist in the Socialist Alternative, a currently popular Trotskyist socialist group) hAas a pretty good article on the growth of the smiley-face police state in Seattle, and she talks about the actual May Day 2013 march organized around immigrant and labor rights, which the mainstream media nearly completely ignored because they were so breathlessly looking for some black-clad person who was cussing and questioning authority. Which all lead to the media spectacle of the police coming down super hard on a few dozen window-breakers and rowdy anarchists after the sun went down.

    http://slog.thestranger.com/slog/archives/2013/05/08/distorted-coverage-of-may-day-and-spd-conduct-show-need-for-big-changes-in-seattle

    Last year The Stranger supported Sawant’s run for the Washington State legislature seat held by the House Speaker and lonnnnnng-time Democratic big wig.

    I do not really trust The Stranger, Dan Savage, who was editor in the early 00s, and the main columnists, all became profoundly islamaphobic after Sept 11 2001 and even supported the invasion of Iraq in 2003. Not to mention their generally obsequious posture toward the Democratic Party. So their support of Sawant is both interesting and probably just a fickle posture of irony on their part?

  83. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    I don’t have a problem with Seidenberg, and I thinking banning people should be done as sparingly as possible. Grundmann’s behavior has been way over the top, where Seidenberg seems to have some decency and knows where to stop. So my vote is yes, ban Grundmann,. but no, don’t ban Seidenberg.

    It’s possible that Seidenberg will lose interest once Grundmann is gone.

  84. Dave Terry

    Chris @ 144; “If I ever get elected to a high level position in the LNC, I will promote “conspiracy theories” he derides so much just to annoy the living shit out of him.”

    Chris,I hope you AREN’T serious, because THAT attitude is just what the LP/LNC DOESN’T need. “Leaders” are supposed to “solve” problems, NOT create them.

  85. Dave Terry

    So that there WON’T be any misunderstanding, I have absolutely NO use for Grundmann. After the first couple of exchange, I have totally ignored his posts. I don’t even send barbs his way, since he feels nothing, being dead from the neck down.

    Having said all this, I STILL believe it would be not only ‘wrong’, but a bad precedent to ban him
    simply for being obtuse and totally predictable.

    I was about to suggest that once we head down that road, where and when will it end, just as Paulie asked the inevitable: “Do you want to ban Seidenberg too, or only Grundmann?”

    Clearly the ‘road’ has already started to decline down the inevitable abyss.

    Let’s have a poll. Everyone nominate five individuals they’d like 86′d. Anyone receiving votes from five different people would be gone.

    It’s a toss up whether Paulie or I would get the most votes. Is this what you want?

  86. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    Elvis Gibson, it’s me who keeps deleting your posts. I’m going to sit here and delete them as long as you keep posting them.

  87. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    Elvis, what are you trying to accomplish? If you have a beef with Paulie, as you obviously do, then take it up with him or with Warren Redlich, the owner of this site. IPR has been overrun with nastiness, and we’re trying to get control of it. We don’t want to ban people or comments unecessarily, but readers come here to talk about third party politics. A private issue shouldn’t be overdone here. Since the person posting anti-Paulie posts does it anonymously and under different names, I have to believe it’s one person. The rest of us don’t want to hear about your private issue.

  88. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    Also, Elvis, I had nothing to do with either Milnes or Ogle being banned. The only reason I agree that Grundmann should be is that he is issuing physical threats, and since he appears to be otherwise unstable, we’re in a very scary category here. Surely you can see the difference.

  89. Alan Pyeatt

    Re: Grundmann, etc., I post often on a sports-related website that often bans people for 24 hours or a week if the offense isn’t too egregious. That seems to work pretty well.

    I really think something needs to be done to raise the level of discourse on IPR. This site has the potential to be a great forum for the exchange of views, but only if people act like adults and respect – or at least pretend to respect – each other’s views.

    Hint: referring to people as “crackpots” in the title of a post won’t get you there.

  90. just editing

    If Grundmann is issuing violent threats, he should be banned from posting directly to IPR (inclusing comments).

    Since Grundmann is a player in non-duopoly politics, he should just email press releases about his important political maneuvers to IPR writers. Said writers can just post an article on anything interesting.

    Hope this helps.

  91. Catholic Trotskyist

    I like the idea of temporary blocks. that’s how a lot of forums work, as well as Wikipedia. That’s what should have happened to Milnes also.

  92. paulie

    Can we please move the whole discussion of who should and should not be banned, why, etc., to the debate parameters thread?

  93. William Saturn

    IMHO

    I oppose any ban on any non-SPAMer. If you don’t like a comment then don’t read it.

    I also oppose not being able to discuss certain topics. If you don’t like a comment then don’t read it.

    Furthermore, I oppose any deletion or alteration of any other’s non-SPAM comments. Removing someone else’s words and replacing it with a smartass remark is wrong.

  94. paulie

    Once again

    Can we please move the whole discussion of who should and should not be banned, why, etc., to the debate parameters thread?

    I think any further comments on that in this thread should not be welcome.

    Please move that discussion there, that is what that thread is there for the express purpose of.

  95. Thomas L. Knapp

    “TLK, Jill, Deran: Do you want to ban Seidenberg too, or only Grundmann?”

    I don’t want to ban anyone.

    I was just noting that Grundmann certainly meets/exceeds the kind of criteria used for previous bans and wondering why it hadn’t happened yet. My presumption was that he hadn’t worn out his entertainment value yet.

  96. Dave Terry

    Way back @ 12o, Paulie wrote: “Please feel free to delete racist/spam/personal attack type comments any time, no questions asked.

    THAT was on THIS ‘thread’!

    So now that it is ‘controversial’ he wants a change of venue.

    Jill, your bias is showing!

  97. Warren Redlich

    Sorry some of you don’t get it. Here’s the deal:

    I own the site. Certain users of the site have impressed me with their consistent contributions, Paulie being #1 on that list, and Jill possibly being #2 or at least close to it.

    I respect their views and trust their judgment.

  98. William Saturn

    I thought this was an open thread. Apparently, its only for what Paulie wants to discuss.

  99. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    So, William, since you don’t seem to think we should mind being abused, as I believe Grundmann is doing to me, and as Elvis was doing to Paulie, would you like to step up and do much of the article posting and comment moderating?

  100. William Saturn

    I had planned to begin posting articles again. But as for comment moderating, I don’t believe any should be done unless it is SPAM.

  101. William Saturn

    No topics should be off limits. A few days ago a legitimate comment from Catholic Trotskyist was deleted because it mentioned Robert Milnes. People shouldn’t have to walk on pins and needles in fear their comments will be deleted because they bring up topics Paulie doesn’t favor. That’s no way to have a discussion.

  102. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    This thread has been discussing what our readers would like to see here re: the nastiness and excessive trolling. I don’t think any decisions have been made. I rarely delete comments unless they’re blatantly racist or abusive, although I did delete three or 4 today because I believe they were in those categories and were non-constructive. I gave the poster the option to use the other thread set up for that reason, which he did. I’m sure there will continue to be discussion there. Many readers think some moderation is appropriate, but some others don’t. The discussion will probably continue for some time.

  103. William Saturn

    At the very least, if non-SPAM comments are being deleted, there should be transparency. Editors should be able to see what was removed. Also, I don’t like the idea of anyone having the ability to go back several years to alter an old comment and removing any trace of what it originally said.

  104. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    I still have the opinion that readership will drop if we don’t get some kind of control over the nasty, repetitive, and/or non-constructive comments. This is simply my opinion, and I’ve never said otherwise. Opinions on the topic are still welcome.

  105. paulie

    I thought this was an open thread. Apparently, its only for what Paulie wants to discuss.

    One of the few restrictions on open threads is not to discuss the very small number of subjects that have earned their own quarantine threads. One or two mentions is fine, but when it becomes repetitive it is no longer OK.

    Debate on debate parameters is a quarantined thread for good reason.

    I don’t understand why you insist on having that discussion here when there is a perfectly good thread set up for the express purpose of discussing that exact subject. I am not saying we can’t discuss it at all, I would just like open thread to exist for discussing other things, such as items in the news.

    Since polite requests are being ignored, I will start deleting comments that are about debate parameters on non-debate parameters threads including open thread. That thread exists for a purpose; use it. If you think it is too old or too long, we can put up a new one. I’m getting ready to go to work, so I’m asking for some help in enforcing this policy. Please permanently delete any additional comments about debate parameters in this thread. Post them in the debate parameters thread if you do not want them to be deleted.

    It’s becoming more and more apparent that coming back was a mistake. If I come back from work and find more comments about debate parameters on this thread, etc., that will probably be it for me. I really don’t have time for this anyway.

  106. William Saturn

    Just because you support legalization does not mean you have to be a pothead.

  107. Dave Terry

    KL @ 194;

    So you are saying that ‘masochists’ have no right to be happy? “>)

  108. Concerned Citizen

    This is sad. I once thought Paulie was a respectable person. Now after reading his admission …

    I won’t let it bring me down. I will continue writing my treatise to help us true Americans retake the country.

  109. langa

    Dude I love libertarian ism so much. It’s the chillest thing ever. Especially the part about legalizing weed.

    Was “libertarian ism” a typo, or were you referring to this type of “ism”?

  110. Kyle

    Andrew Gray, one of two “official” libertarians elected in Kansas and acknowledged on the lp’s website, resigned from the Topeka City Council yesterday citing personal health concerns, and health concerns of an “immediate” family member. This means the LPKS is down to one elected libertarian in the state.

  111. Alan Pyeatt

    I received an email from the CATO Institute today with a link to a video on their Libertarianism.org website at http://www.libertarianism.org/blog/anarchism-new-yorker?utm_source=Libertarianism.org&utm_campaign=7e3d288a47-RSS_EMAIL_CAMPAIGN&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_e576f220e6-7e3d288a47-142146682.

    The video features Karl Hess and Robert Anton Wilson speaking at the LP convention in 1987.
    In it, Karl Hess tells about his experiences with a government informer. Also, Robert Anton Wilson told an old European proverb: “When four sit down to conspire, three of them are government agents and the fourth is a damn fool.”

    Lots of other good stories, too!

  112. George Phillies

    Remember, many of the people on the hunger strike are people who were found to have no connections with any terrorist group, but we are refusing to release them. Instead, we are torturing them via force feeding.

  113. From Der Sidelines

    Speaking of conspiracies…

    Rumor has it that LSLA did not have a quorum yesterday in Denver, at least early on, and that there was no sign of the Starr Chamber.

    Whether or not that has to do with them getting their behinds handed to them in Oregon a couple of days ago remains to be seen…

  114. SirGwain

    At the top of militaryreligiousfreedom.org there is a quote from the founder of the foundation,

    “When one proudly dons a U.S. Military uniform, there is only one religious symbol: the American flag. There is only one religious scripture: the American Constitution. Finally, there is only one religious faith: American patriotism” ~Mikey Weinstein

  115. Be Rational

    “When one proudly dons a U.S. Military uniform, there is only one religious symbol: the American flag. There is only one religious scripture: the American Constitution. Finally, there is only one religious faith: American patriotism” ~Mikey Weinstein

    Does anyone note the dangerous downside in this sentiment for marching lockstep in a ferver of patriotism and nationalism raised to the level of a religion in its own right that worships the state and honors its banner and other trappings without the moderation of outside belief, reason or questioning thoughts?

  116. Dave Terry

    With all due respect to Mr. “Winestein”, when I proudly donned the uniform of the U.S. Army, I swore and oath to defend the Constitution of the United States against it’s enemies; “foreign, OR DOMESTIC!.

    I DID NOT sign on to defend a piece of cloth, no matter it’s shape or color. Neither did I swear to defend the government of the United States, outside of it Constitutionally delegated powers.

    There is ABSOLUTELY nothing ‘religious’ in my ‘patriotism’!

  117. SirGwain

    “Does anyone note the dangerous downside in this sentiment for marching lockstep in a ferver of patriotism and nationalism raised to the level of a religion in its own right that worships the state and honors its banner and other trappings without the moderation of outside belief, reason or questioning thoughts?”

    That is why I posted this, what “Whinestein” is saying is “no man can serve two masters” so give up any Faith you have and serve the STATE.
    But hey if Gary supports it well, it must be “libertarian” remember how Mr Johnson defines libertarian, “social liberal and fiscal conservative”

    Just remember folks if you refer to God while cursing in the Military its free speech, while praying or in conversation, its a violation of first amendment rights.

  118. Christian Identity Patriotic Conservative

    Moderated comment. Can be read via http://rot13.com

    Rirelbar va gur Zvyvgnel fubhyq oraq gurve xarr orsber gur Pebff bs Wrfhf naq or 100% ba obneq jvgu bhe Ubyl Pehfnqr ntnvafg gur vasvqryf. Jvgu n Pebff va bar unaq naq n Znpuvar Tha va gur bgure jr jvyy fcernq bhe Juvgr Fhcerznpvfg pnhfr guebhtubhg Nfvn, Nsevpn naq gur jubyr jbeyq haqre gur Fgne Fcnatyrq Onaare.

  119. Be Rational

    It’s hard to see the Stars and Stripes when the only color allowed is white.

  120. Christian Identity Patriotic Conservative

    Moderated comment. Can be read via http://rot13.com

    Gur Erq Juvgr naq Oyhr fgnaqf sbe Erq arpx, Juvgr fxva naq Oyhr pbyyne. Va gur anzr bs Wrfhf Nzra! Nyfb, vg fubhyq ab ybatre or BX sbe evtug guvaxvat Cngevbgf gb nyyl jvgu Xbfure Pbafreingvirf naq znxr rkphfrf sbe gurz whfg orpnhfr gurl pynvz gb or ba gur evtug. Cneg bs gur ceboyrz vf gung zbfg Juvgr Puevfgvnaf gbqnl pbashfr gur Wrjf bs gur Ovoyr jvgu gur crbcyr pnyyvat gurzfryirf Wrjf abj. Gurl arrq gb yrnea gung gurl gurzfryirf ner gur npghny qrfpraqragf bs gur Ovoyvpny Wrjf, abg gur zbqrea fb pnyyrq Wrjf, jub ner npghnyyl bs Ghexb-Zbatbyvna bevtva.

  121. Deran

    I’m not associated with the Socialist Alternative, or any sort of “Trotskyism”, but Kshama Sawant, who was a candidate for state legislature agaisnt the Democratic Party WA House Speaker (and she got just under 30% in a two way race).

    Now she is running for Seattle City Council. According to this article on her campaign website they qualified to be on the ballot for the Council primary election by collecting 2400 signatures (instead of paying the $1200 filing fee)

    http://www.votesawant.org/we_re_on_the_ballot

    Socialist Alternative is also running a candidate for Minneapolis City Council. Ty Moore. He was recently endorsed in this race by the Green Party.

    It’s not big news, but there you go.

  122. NewFederalist

    I have been on self imposed exile for a few weeks. Is it me or has this site just gone to the dogs recently? All the trolls and bitterness just make me sick. I have read the “trolls” section and I just don’t know what to say. Trolls are bad but the response seems, well, inadequate and inappropriate while being harsh and confusing. Also I find the casual vulgarity by the youthful
    “journalist” to be unbecoming of a site which wants to be taken seriously as a news source. Perhaps I am just getting old.

  123. Mark Seidenberg

    On March 20, 2013, the California Sedretary of
    State had CCROV Memo 13032 issued. It relates
    to the on going dispute in the CCalifornia Constitution Party for control. That 304 eletor
    party is in a leadership dispute between Dr. Don Grundmanm its “1st Chairman and N. Johnson.
    Grundman had the party name change3d for the
    “Constitution Party of California” to the “Constitution Party”.

  124. Steven R Linnabary

    I received the following, posted to my FB wall, from Greg Jocoy from the SC Green Party.

    Pretty sure he wouldn’t mind this getting some attention.

    PEACE
    Steve

    *******
    On January 20th of 2012 I was ticketed by Officer Nelson of the Greenville Police for allegedly violating the City of Greenville’s picketing ordinance.

    Sec. 36-133. of the Greenville Municipal Code says:
    Definitions. – Picketing and pickets include demonstrating and demonstrators, and other related First Amendment activity.

    http://library.municode.com/HTML/13105/level3/COOR_CH36STSIOTPUPL_ARTVPAEVBLPAPEFIPI.html#COOR_CH36STSIOTPUPL_ARTVPAEVBLPAPEFIPI_S36-133DE

    The ordinance goes on to say:

    Such picketers may carry written or printed placards or signs, provided the placards and staffs or poles to which they are attached do not interfere with the free use of the sidewalk by other pedestrians. Such placards, with reasonable use, shall be deemed to comply if they do not exceed 20 inches by 30 inches or 600 square inches.

    http://library.municode.com/HTML/13105/level3/COOR_CH36STSIOTPUPL_ARTVPAEVBLPAPEFIPI.html#COOR_CH36STSIOTPUPL_ARTVPAEVBLPAPEFIPI_S36-142PI

    It is alleged that I violated this portion of the ordinance.

    I asked for and got a jury trial. I won’t discuss my trial strategy on Facebook for obvious reasons, but I hope that this explains why I have asked for a jury trial. I trust my fellow citizens to see the injustice in the charge leveled against me.

    The trial is scheduled to begin at 8:30 on Thursday of this week. It will be held at

    426 North Main Street, Greenville SC

    My signs carried the slogans “Money is not free speech” and “Corporations are not people”, as well as another sign promoting Move To Amend, a national movement to amend the US Constitution to establish those two statements as part of our Constitution.

    Let me be clear. This same ordinance, if enforced, will leave you at risk of a fine and court costs regardless of what is on your sign. “God is Great”…”March Against Monsanto”…”Abortion is Wrong”…”Put Down The Guns Young People”…it doesn’t matter.

    I hope some of you will be willing to stand with me as I take my case to a jury of our peers. If you know anyone in the media, please make them aware of my case. Thank you.

    Gregg Jocoy

    803-984-5414

    http://library.municode.com/HTML/13105/level3/COOR_CH36STSIOTPUPL_ARTVPAEVBLPAPEFIPI.html#COOR_CH36STSIOTPUPL_ARTVPAEVBLPAPEFIPI_S36-133DE

  125. Deran

    The annual Left Forum in NYC is always interesting, this year the blog North Star is holding a panel on Left third parties and elections.

    http://www.leftforum.org/content/left-third-party-organizing-challenges-and-opportunities

    And there will be several other panels on electoral politics and the US Left. I’ve heard many of the panels will be livestreamed, which will make these events even broader in their reach. I’m hoping North Star will carry multiple posts on the panel their holding and the others as well.

  126. Steve M

    the biggest news in anti government activity in the last two days was the arrest of Adam Kokesh…. yet here on IPR is silence?

  127. Steve M

    Bill Saturn, this isn’t the things are broken and that’s why we need third parties report. One of us is mistaken.

  128. paulie

    Bill Saturn, this isn’t the things are broken and that’s why we need third parties report. One of us is mistaken.

    As usual that someone would be you. IPR has no obligation to report on anything at all. We are not paid to do this, and no one assigns anyone any articles. People write about what news they find if interests them and when they have time to write about it. And it has to pertain to alternative political parties and independent candidates. When we come across them commenting on a matter, someone might post an article about it, if they find it interesting and if they have time. Otherwise it does not matter how big a news story it is in which circles. No matter how much you may feel entitled to a free service being better than it is, you are not. You aren’t even entitled to it being as good as it is. You should be grateful you get anything at all. Or provide a better service yourself. Instead, you continuously whine and complain, thus serving to demotivate people and making sure that everyone gets less.

  129. north west front

    Moderated comment. Can be read via http://rot13.com

    Gur zbqrengbef ner fghcvq ovgpurf naq chaxf. Gurl ner abg arneyl nf fzneg nf gurl guvax gurl ner. V unir zvyyvbaf bs jnlf nebhaq jungrire oneevref gurl gel gb hfr gb xrrc zr bhg. Gurl ner nsenvq gb yrg lbh ernq jung V unir gb fnl. Nfx lbhefrys jul.

  130. Steve M

    actually this rot13 is good brain training…. I am working on reading it without using a translator.

    ok Steve M…. hmmm sometime compliments aren’t compliments… and Brian H wouldn’t make more sense rot13 or not….

    That last part was a bit of a Joke… I am starting to respect Brian…

    uzzz fbzrgvzrf pbzcyvzragf …..

  131. Steve M

    i also think? usualy difficult…. that i thought I had thanked jill for pointing out an earlier article on the subject I was talking about…

    Well I don’t see it here…

    So Jill, Thanks… I missed that story…

  132. paulie

    and you exaggerate….

    Not even slightly. As for your comment elsewhere, I am not technically the host here, Warren is, but to the extent that I am, I am quite gracious to gracious guests, which would not be you.

  133. Mark Seidenberg

    I have been informed that 3 of the newly elected
    63 member body of the Althingi are from the
    Pirate Party of Iceland.

    Sincerely, Mark Seidenberg, Vice Chairman,

    American Independent Party of California

  134. paulie

    at best is exaggeration at worse a lie.

    It’s true, you keep doing it all the time. No idea what you hope to gain. If you want IPR to be better, you are achieving the opposite.

  135. paulie

    I have been informed that 3 of the newly elected
    63 member body of the Althingi are from the
    Pirate Party of Iceland.

    Thanks! Got a link on that?

  136. Darryl W. Perry

    regarding the arrest of Kokesh and it’s “worthiness” of being posted on IPR; I would say that it’s not related to “third parties” at all! To the best of my knowledge, Kokesh is a REPUBLICAN, when he ran for Congress in 2010, he ran as a REPUBLICAN.

  137. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    I must say that I’ve always been suspicious of Kokesch. I’m just not convinced that he’s playing on the same team I’m rooting for.

  138. FYI

    It has been working for non-admins. Let me try….if it doesn’t work this time I don’t know why.

  139. Stewart Flood

    He walked into this trap with his eyes wide open. He has to have seen what they do to people they want to make fun of.

    And if he didn’t know what they’d do, then what the heck was he doing on a show he didn’t know about? Ego. Wayne is all about Wayne.

    This was Wayne’s “jumping the shark” moment. He’s over.

  140. T. Lee Ryde

    He’s just getting started, he will get rich and famous playing the stereotype evil rightwinger and clowning it up for liberals. Ain’t no shame in his game.

  141. Austin Battenberg

    I’m glad he was called a conservative instead of a libertarian. I’m glad the word libertarian wasn’t mentioned. im glad WAR left the LP.

  142. MA 3rd Party Senate Candidate

    Richard Heos is actually on the ballot. His party platform is substantially radical libertarian

    PRIME LAW

    *The purpose of human life is to prosper and live happily.

    *The function of government is to provide the conditions that let individuals fulfill that purpose.

    *The Prime Law guarantees those conditions by forbidding the use of initiatory force, fraud or coercion by any person or group against any individual, property or contract.

    ARTICLE 1

    No person , group of personsm or government shall initiate force, threat of force, or fraud against any individual”s self, property, or contract.

    ARTICLE 2

    Force is morally-and legally justified only for protection from those who violate Article 1.

    ARTICLE 3

    No exceptions shall exist for Articles 1 and 2.

    *The Prime Law is the fundamental, natural law of protection (that directs all decisions and actions of the Twelve Visions Party); the Prime Law may not be amended.

  143. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    I’m pleased to report that Caliornia’s AB 351 passed through the Appropriations Committee yesterday, and will now go to the state’s entire assembly for a vote. If you’re interested in helping, my FB page has instructions of what to do next, or you can go to the Tenth Amendment Center’s website, also. AB 351 is a bill to invalidate the indefinite detention portion of the NDAA.

  144. T. Lee Ryde

    @246 Sounds good, although I saw someone say they are actually part of some cult.

  145. Catholic Trotskyist

    Just read that San Francisco talk radio host Gene Burns passed away.
    http://www.democraticunderground.com/1014493048

    I think I remember reading somewhere that he tried to run for the Libertarian presidential nomination in the 1980s. Don’t have time to look it up right now, but thought I’d post this here anyway.

  146. Darryl W. Perry

    found some info…
    http://www.examiner.com/article/florida-libertarian-elect-a-new-face-for-their-political-party-to-move-forward
    “Yesterday the delegates at the convention elected Dana Moxley Cummings as their new chair. Cummings is from Hollywood, Florida and is a graduate of FSU with a B.S. in political science and sociology. She and her family currently live in Valrico, Florida. She is relatively new to the Libertarian Party.. Former Libertarian U.S. Senate candidate Alexander Snitker won Vice Chair for the LPF during yesterday’s elections by a wide margin. “

  147. Darryl W. Perry

    @Paulie – I read the two posts on that group and was totally confused as to what happened. I’ve still not seen vote totals. Also, I believe the Gubernatorial election is still over a year away, will the LPF be nominating candidates this year or next? I ask only because there are already at least 2 tickets campaigning for the nomination

  148. NewFederalist

    CT @ 249… Gene Burns all but had the LP nomination for the taking in 1984 when he dropped out just a couple of weeks before the convention. I don’t know if there ever was a satisfactory reason for his change of heart at the last minute. David Bergland stepped forward to become the standard bearer and the rest is very sad history. Thanks for the news. I had not thought about Gene in years.

  149. Wayne Brady

    Sorry to hear about Gene Burns. I liked to think of him as the white Wayne Brady.

  150. William Saturn

    The Wikipedia article for Tom Stevens is currently up for deletion. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Articles_for_deletion/Tom_Stevens_(politician)

    The publicly available IP address of the nominator points to someone who has commented here as recently as this morning. I will not out the individual, but the IP address is available at http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Tom_Stevens_(politician)&action=history

    Initially, the nominator placed a notability tag on the Stevens page, questioning the notability of Stevens. Another anonymous user (from an IP located in Manchester, Connecticut) then removed the tag. The nominator accused this anonymous user of being Stevens himself.

    Since only those with a username on Wikipedia can create discussion pages for articles up for deletion, the nominator presumably registered the username Libertopia to create the deletion discussion page for Stevens.

  151. William Saturn

    Though this continues the purge of third party items from Wikipedia, I believe this example spawns from a personal dispute.

  152. LPF Fails Again

    Just to clarify about how Libertarians are nominated in Florida. Florida no longer has 3rd parties nominate tickets via convention. If more than one Libertarian candidate qualifies to run there will be a primary during the summer of 2014.

  153. paulie

    Yes, but will any of them qualify to run? And we were discussing the internal party offices in the previous comments, I think.

  154. Dave Terry

    Paulie @ 260: “Yes, but will any of them qualify to run?”

    If they meet the Constitutional conditions for election, WHAT would disqualify them from running?

    LPFFA @259; “If more than one Libertarian candidate qualifies to run there will be a primary during the summer of 2014.

    I can’t speak for Florida, but aren’t party nominations generally decided at conventions?
    For the LP (of any state) to elect to force the tax-
    payers to pay for their nomination “primary” is
    against the fundamental ideals of the L.P.

  155. Tom Blanton

    Journalist Robert Parry has figured out what all hatred of government is all about over at Consortium News:

    But something extreme has surfaced in modern American politics: an ideological hatred of government. From the Tea Party to libertarianism, there is a “principled” rejection – at least rhetorically – of almost everything that government does (outside of national security), and those views are no longer simply “fringe.” By and large, they have been embraced by the national Republican Party.

    skip

    But the Tea Partiers are not entirely wrong when they insist that their hatred of “guv-mint” has its roots in the Founding era. There was an American tradition that involved resisting a strong and effective national government. It was, however, not anchored in the principles of “liberty,” but rather in the practice of slavery.

    There you have it. Libertarian slave owners didn’t want no “guv-mint” worrying them about freeing slaves and the irrational hatred of “guv-mint” just sort of stuck with them.

    http://consortiumnews.com/2013/05/27/source-of-anti-government-extremism/

    Libertarians and southerners should go and rip Parry a new one. Of course, he is entirely right about Republicans. Their hatred of government is completely irrational since they love big government, demand big government, and vote for big government.

  156. Alan Pyeatt

    TB @ 262: Interesting article, thanks for posting. I see there aren’t a lot of comments yet, so I gave them my 2 cents.

  157. Alan Pyeatt

    Interesting article on 9/11 in the Wall Street Journal: http://online.wsj.com/article/PR-CO-20130516-909978.html.

    Here’s a brief quote: “The famous “let’s roll” drama of the passenger revolt on UA 93 was relayed by passenger Todd Beamer’s 13-minute unrecorded seat-back call to GTE telephone supervisor Lisa Jefferson, who reported Beamer as strangely tranquil, declining to speak to his wife. Eerily, Beamer’s line remained open for 15 minutes after the crash.

    “Oddly, the Verizon wireless record shows that 19 calls were made from Beamer’s cell phone long after the crash of UA 93.”

    Yeah, I would call that kind of odd.

    Maybe we’re far enough removed from the events (as in, no danger of actually holding anybody ACCOUNTABLE) that the LSM can now begin to acknowledge that the Bush administration’s conspiracy theory is a crock.

    Of course, “truthers” have been saying for years that these phone calls were bogus, but the Bush administration apologists aren’t willing to look at the ugly truth.

  158. Steve M

    @270…. really it seems you are quite historically ignorant…. a good German is one who wouldn’t question the authorities not one who does.

  159. Steve M

    @270 now references a disappeared post that used the expression good German with respect to myself.

  160. paulie

    The nazi’s personal attacks against me and bigoted remarks are not welcome here. Steve M’s are barely better, but at least for now (barely) in bounds, even though the nazi putz enjoys Steve M’s attacks on me. “Authorities” my ass BTW. Really they should both go somewhere else, no one forces them to be here and we have no authority except over those who volunteer to participate here. Warren could pull the site down tomorrow and you will have suffered no injury whatsoever, so anything you get here is a free bonus – you are entitled to nothing. If it was of no value to you, you would not keep coming back. But you do, thus proving you draw value from it. Yet instead of thanking the people who bust ass to give you something for nothing all you do is disparage and discourage. Disgusting. You should both be ashamed of yourselves.

  161. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    Hey, Troll, I’m busy at work, but I have IPR comments up on my second monitor so I can delete your comments as soon as they show up. How fun can that be for you? You’re losing, Dude.

  162. Andy

    Alan Pyeatt said: “Maybe we’re far enough removed from the events (as in, no danger of actually holding anybody ACCOUNTABLE) that the LSM can now begin to acknowledge that the Bush administration’s conspiracy theory is a crock.

    Of course, ‘truthers’ have been saying for years that these phone calls were bogus, but the Bush administration apologists aren’t willing to look at the ugly truth.”

    The same can be said of certain people who call themselves “Libertarians,” while at the same time mindlessly parroting the official government story about 9/11 and attacking those who point out the numerous holes in the official government approved conspiracy theory about 9/11. What kind of wacko nutjob believes the official government fairy tale about 9/11 and could call themselves a Libertarian and keep a straight face at the same time?

    Any Libertarians out there who are actually in touch with REALITY, as in those who have not gotten drunk from the government spiked Kool Aid, should check out my group, Libertarians for 9/11 Truth:

    http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Libertariansfor911Truth/

  163. Brian Holtz

    AP: Interesting article on 9/11 in the Wall Street Journal:

    Not as interesting as your willingness to have readers here think that a truther press release (cf. “PRNewswire”) is the the product of the WSJ reporting staff.

    Andy: What kind of wacko nutjob believes the official government fairy tale about 9/11 and could call themselves a Libertarian and keep a straight face at the same time?

    There are about 75 of them on this list: http://lpedia.org/Most_Famous_Libertarians

    Still waiting for a theory of why they don’t believe your theory. Maybe they haven’t seen you type “reality” in all caps?

  164. Alan Pyeatt

    BH @ 276: “Not as interesting as your willingness to have readers here think that a truther press release (cf. “PRNewswire”) is the the product of the WSJ reporting staff.”

    Astute readers will notice that I said nothing about who wrote the piece. They will also note that despite yet another attempt to put words in my mouth, the Wall Street Journal DID find the article newsworthy enough to publish.

    It’s downright bizarre that you’re following me around on IPR, trying to convince people that I’m somehow trying to pull the wool over people’s eyes, when I repeatedly post links so that people can look at the sources for themselves. The web page clearly states, “The Wall Street Journal news department was not involved in the creation of this content.” Why would I post the link if I was really trying to fool people?

    And why do you keep asking for a theory about why the people on your “Most Famous Libertarians” list “don’t believe [Andy's] theory” (whatever theory that is)? Are we supposed to read their minds or speculate about what they’re thinking?

    Truth is not subject to a majority vote, anyway. If it was, the world really would have been flat in the 14th century. So your argument isn’t persuasive.

    I hope you’re being well paid, Brian. I would hate to think of anyone embarrassing himself like that without getting filthy rich in the process.

  165. Brian Holtz

    AP: I said nothing about who wrote the piece.

    OK, so we’re agreed that your original description of this information’s source is typical of your standards for investigating/presenting 9/11 “truth”.

    Why would I post the link if I was really trying to fool people?

    Disinformers usually don’t critically evaluate the disinformation they spread. And even when they do, they (perhaps subconsciously) calculate that the risk of any particular piece of disinformation being critically evaluated is worth the benefit of adding more smoke to the disinformation fog.

    Are we supposed to read their minds or speculate about what they’re thinking? [...] I hope you’re being well paid, Brian.

    If your best theory of my disagreement with the 9/11 Truthiness Movement is that I (a dot-com millionaire) am being paid for my IPR comments, then that explains a lot.

    Does this paranoid speculation apply to all those famous libertarians, or is your head still in the sand on that question?

    Truth is not subject to a majority vote

    If you actually care about truth, then you care about understanding why your truth is different from that of the majority.

    My theory of 9/11 not only explains the events of that day, but it also explains the beliefs of you and me and these famous libertarians.

    My theory even explains why you don’t care that my theory has more explanatory power than yours.

  166. Alan Pyeatt

    BH @ 279: “OK, so we’re agreed that your original description of this information’s source is typical of your standards for investigating/presenting 9/11 ‘truth’.”

    Me: Excuse me, but this is an article that was published in the Wall Street Journal, a supposedly reputable source of news. To repeat, I said nothing about the source of the information, and it was clearly stated on the web page I referenced. YOU are the one who keeps referring to mainstream news outlets as the standard for judging truth or fiction. So, now that some of them are beginning to question the Bush administration’s conspiracy theory, you’re going to move the goalposts?

    BH @ 279: “Disinformers usually don’t critically evaluate the disinformation they spread. And even when they do, they (perhaps subconsciously) calculate that the risk of any particular piece of disinformation being critically evaluated is worth the benefit of adding more smoke to the disinformation fog.”

    Me: Excuse me, but I am not a “disinformer.” This is your assumption, and you are wrong. On the contrary, on several threads you have attempted to put words into my mouth that I did not say, and made several nefarious implications that are just plain wrong. So, this word applies to you, not me.

    BH @ 279: “Does this paranoid speculation apply to all those famous libertarians, or is your head still in the sand on that question?”

    Me: Once again, you have made another incorrect assumption. Paranoia occurs when a person has no reasonable basis for their concerns. My concerns are based on historical experiences of organizations that have worked for social change, on government research such as that conducted by people like Cass Sunstein and Adrian Vermeule (http://www.law.uchicago.edu/files/files/387.pdf), and on analysis of the implications of said research (http://www.salon.com/2010/01/15/sunstein_2/). I also make frequent use of Murray Rothbard’s technique of asking, “who benefits?” in order to determine possible motives for the actions of people and organizations. That’s far from “paranoid speculation.”

    As for having my head in the sand, I’m not the one who naively parrots MSM news accounts without looking at them critically, and then discounts them when they print information that I don’t like.

    BH @ 279: “My theory even explains why you don’t care that my theory has more explanatory power than yours.”

    Me: That must be one hell of a theory, then, if it explains why I “don’t care” about something I’ve never heard. And again, you’re assuming that your theory has “more explanatory power” than my theory, even though I have never proposed a full-blown theory about 9/11, on IPR or anywhere else. So, how could you possibly know what my theory is?

    That’s one hell of a crystal ball you have, Brian.

  167. Deran

    Just because a press releae appears on the WSJ online site does not indicate that the WSJ considers this press release actual news or not, if you do a search of the WSJ site “press release(s)” you find that they publish many press releases from a variety of sources.

    Perhaps it is easier for the WSJ to accept this press release than to put up with the barrage of truthers complaining that the WSJ did not publish it. It’s interesting how now not only is a WSJ disclaimer at the bottom of that page, but the same disclaimer is just above the press release.

  168. Steve M

    @280

    This was a press release. This was not published by the Wall Street Journal News Department. They have a significant disclaimer right at the bottom of the web page you reference.

    Therefore the claims in the press release were not vetted by the Wall Street News Department.

    To claim that it was is incorrect.

  169. Alan Pyeatt

    Steve M @ 282: “Therefore the claims in the press release were not vetted by the Wall Street News Department.

    “To claim that it was is incorrect.”

    When did I claim that? Just because Brian Holtz makes an incorrect assumption, doesn’t mean that you should, too.

  170. Alan Pyeatt

    BH @ 279: “If your best theory of my disagreement with the 9/11 Truthiness Movement is that I (a dot-com millionaire) am being paid for my IPR comments, then that explains a lot.”

    So, let me make sure I understand correctly: Are you claiming to be a dot-com millionaire? And yet, on another thread, you proposed a “debate” in which the questions to be asked would be determined by the highest bidder. In other words, the “debate” could be rigged simply by outbidding the opposition.

    If this is true, then you have a lot of nerve calling other people out for “disinformation.”

  171. Thomas L. Knapp

    “Excuse me, but this is an article that was published in the Wall Street Journal”

    Yes, in much the same way that the MooogaMoogaMax Electric Dog Polisher was SEEN ON CNN (via a local cable provider’s paid middle-of-the-night feed).

  172. Dave Terry

    AP @279; ” I also make frequent use of Murray Rothbard’s technique of asking, “who benefits?” in order to determine possible motives for the actions of people and organizations. That’s far from “paranoid speculation.”

    It isn’t UNLESS you presume that benefiting from a particular policy destroys the objectivity
    and honesty of the person involved.

    After all, don’t we ALL benefit from liberty? Liberty and License aren’t the same thing and self-interest doesn’t automatically convict a person of being anti-social or manipulative.

  173. Alan Pyeatt

    No Dave, we don’t all benefit from liberty. Some people benefit from restrictive licensing laws that reduce or eliminate competition. Others benefit from taxing workers to subsidize or bail out favored companies. Arms manufacturers benefit from unwarranted military attacks.

    Freedom gives everyone an equal opportunity, as far as the law is concerned, to achieve prosperity. But there have always been some (usually the politically connected) who benefit from state-sponsored theft.

    You certainly can make the case (as Ludwig von Mises did in “Liberalism”) that liberty benefits everyone in the long run. But in the short term, favored companies and individuals often benefit from eliminating liberty.

  174. Alan Pyeatt

    TLK @ 284: “Yes, in much the same way that the MooogaMoogaMax Electric Dog Polisher was SEEN ON CNN (via a local cable provider’s paid middle-of-the-night feed).”

    So Thomas, are you saying that the 9/11 Consensus Panel paid the Wall Street Journal to publish that release? Is there any evidence to support that view, or is it just speculation?

  175. paulie

    WSJ online reprints anything and everything from PR Newswire, and PR Newswire publishes whatever people pay it to. I’m not sure what is in it for WSJ. See here.

  176. Dave Terry

    AP @ 286: “No Dave, we don’t all benefit from liberty. Some people benefit from restrictive licensing laws that reduce or eliminate competition.

    I don’t get it Alan; did you not proof read this before you sent it. Ostensibly you were arguing against my position that” liberty benefits us all.
    Do you really imagine that “restrictive licensing
    laws the eliminate competition” represents liberty.

    Your other examples; “taxing workers to subsidize or bail out favored companies” ALSO clearly fail to meet the criterion for “liberty”

    > “Freedom gives everyone an equal opportunity, > as far as the law is concerned, to achieve > prosperity. But there have always been some > (usually the politically connected) who benefit > from state-sponsored theft.

    AGAIN, I fail to see how the politically connected
    taking advantage of their position and/or theft by
    the state contracts my position the liberty benefits
    us all.

  177. T. Lee Ryde

    The most logical deduction is that PR Newswire passes some of the money they charge their customers to sites such as wsj online for carrying their content.

  178. Alan Pyeatt

    I wasn’t trying to argue with you, Dave. Sorry if my post wasn’t clear, but I was just trying to give you a few examples of how some parties benefit (in the short term, at least) by denying freedom to others. So yes, the examples I gave are NOT examples of liberty, they are examples of favored groups benefiting from the denial of liberty to others.

    You asked, “After all, don’t we ALL benefit from liberty?” What I’m saying is that in the long term this may be true, but in the short term some groups benefit from tyranny.

  179. Brian Holtz

    Alan is right: there is plenty of rent-seeking in America.

    Re: press releases on wsj.com, let me Google that for you: http://lmgtfy.com/?q=prnewswire+site%3Awsj.com

    You’ll get over 70,000 press releases from PRNewsWire that the Wall St. Journal archives on their site. The first page of results are “articles” consisting of a repeated sentence: “This is a test from PR Newswire.”

    AP: I’m not the one who naively parrots MSM news accounts without looking at them critically, and then discounts them when they print information that I don’t like.

    A truther press release is not a “news account”, and it’s disinformation to say that the Wall Street Journal “printed” these claims.

  180. Steve Rhodes

    Okay, so we’ve established that the WSJ didn’t really publish this article. Now, can we discuss what the article says? I find the irregularities in the article disturbing. What could be a possible explanation for the fact that Beamer’s phone had 19 calls made after the plane crashed?

  181. Steve M

    Alen, @282 I question the WSJ being a participant in @269 which was before BH @276…

    I have been called a few things here on IPR but this to my recollection is the first time I have been called a mind reader.

  182. Steve M

    Steve Rhodes,

    The press release has no factual references. We have no idea if any of it has any facts behind it. If you go look up the cast of characters who were behind the organization that made that press release…. that is what you find a cast of characters….

    This is the point of making it look like the WSJ was the publisher… to give it credibility…

  183. Brian Holtz

    A good starting point for the Flight 77 calls is here:

    http://911myths.com/index.php/American_Airlines_Flight_77_Calls

    Even the 9/11 Truth community gets embarrassed by claims that the Flight 77 calls were faked: see http://911review.com/errors/phantom/fake_calls.html, and click through to http://911review.com/articles/larson/FakeCallsCritique.html

    Such Truthers also are embarrassed by no-jet-hit-the-Pentagon theories (like those peddled by Mr. Pyeatt): http://911research.wtc7.net/pentagon/analysis/theories/

    In fact, the no-jet and faked-call theories are so fringe that some Truthers claim that those theories might be planted and promoted by agents of The Conspiracy, in order to discredit the Truth movement: http://oilempire.us/disinfo.html

    It’s hard to tell who’s doing a better job of discrediting the Truth movement: me or Alan? So at the next LP convention maybe we both should wear this:

  184. Build the American Police State!

    George Phillies writes

    With a hat tip to the Chicago Sun-Times, here is the Republican Governor apparently seriously proposing a mass arrest of people he does not like.

    You didn’t expect them to start with Brownie Scouts, did you? And here is a Republican -surprise – looking at a mass arrest of 18,000 people for belonging to a group…

    http://www.suntimes.com/20414755-761/bobby-rush-rips-mark-kirks-mass-gang-arrests-proposal-as-elitist-white-boy-solution.html

  185. Steve Rhodes

    Bypass @ 299: Did you read that on the Alex Jones show? That’s another one of those wacky conspiracy theories.

  186. Steve M

    If they seriously wanted to fix the gang problems they would take the cash making operations away from the gangs by legalizing drugs, prostitution, gambling and reducing the tax on tobacco products that is making smuggling cigarets between states profitable.

  187. T. Lee Ryde

    Wow! Just how much of this crap do we have to endure?

    I thought the drug war would be over by now, too. It’s starting to crack…

  188. Jill Pyeatt Post author

    I’m pleased to report that we’ve had VICTORY in California! AB 351 passed unanimously on the Assembly floor today. This is a bill which nullifies the indefinite detention portion of the NDAA. Many of us Libertarians were directly involved in getting the word out about this, spreading awareness and getting people to call their Assemblypeople.

    Next, it needs to go to the state senate.

    If you want to start something like this in your state, start at http://www.tenthamendmentcenter.com.

    Woo-hoo!!!

  189. Austin Battenberg

    http://reason.com/blog/2013/05/30/gary-johnson-did-not-seem-to-enjoy-runni

    Quote from article:
    “While the time management issues may easy to correct, Johnson’s fundraising problems may be more difficult. “I’m a horrible fundraiser,” he said. “I’m terrible at asking people for money. I don’t ask people for money. I don’t do it. I can’t. So, let’s just not spend any time on that at all. Have others do that. Tell them right up front, ‘The reason Gary is not on the phone is because he’s horrible at this. He’s incapable of raising money.’”

  190. George Phillies

    @307 He raised a considerable amount of money. How did he spend it? Let’s say that many donors will have reasons to be less than satisfied, as will be covered in Liberty For America, the Libertarian newspaper.

  191. Alan Pyeatt

    BH @ 293: “A truther press release is not a ‘news account’, and it’s disinformation to say that the Wall Street Journal ‘printed’ these claims.”

    Maybe so. But if you read my posts carefully, you will see that I never made that claim. In fact, I haven’t looked at a print copy of the WSJ in years.

    I provided a link to an article that the WSJ, for whatever reason, saw fit to publish on their website, under their banner. Why? Because I thought it might be of interest to some people. You know, maybe have a free discussion of ideas, because despite your claims, there are good reasons to doubt the veracity of the alleged phone calls from the airplanes on 9/11. But you saw fit to attack my post anyway. O.k., fine. If Warren wants to allow a free-for-all on this website, instead of a place where people discuss differences of opinion like adults, it’s his decision.

    Frankly, I would be much more interested in your theories if you didn’t act like such an attack dog, but you don’t seem interested in “winning friends and influencing people” anyway. So, yes, maybe you SHOULD wear that ribbon to the next convention. At least it will add a little interest.

    BTW, it might surprise you to find out that news outlets often publish press releases as articles. Sometimes they’re published verbatim, but more often they are reworded or edited. I don’t know what the WSJ’s policy is, but they don’t seem to have considered this release “fringe” enough to hurt their brand. If they did, they wouldn’t have published it under their banner.

  192. Dave Terry

    CC @310; “Why do I see advertisements for homosexual dating websites? What they do in their private time is their business, but I don’t want it shoved in my face.

    Don’t like it, don’t read it!

  193. Brian Holtz

    Alan, you used the word “print” @279: discounts them when they print information that I don’t like.

    You continue: they don’t seem to have considered this release “fringe” enough to hurt their brand

    The presence of 70K Google hits tells us they automatically post/archive on their web site just about every press release that PRNewsWire forwards from its clients. It seems typical of your M.O. for you to suggest that anybody in the WSJ news department “considered this release” in any way.

    I don’t know what the WSJ’s policy is

    And yet you talk about the WSJ “print[ing]” this article, and “consider[ing]” it worthy to publish.

    Again: I’m prepared to agree that your descriptions of this information’s source is typical of your standards for investigating/presenting 9/11 “truth”.

    Frankly, I would be much more interested in your theories if you didn’t act like such an attack dog

    Sorry, but my debate-mobile does not feature crumple zones for protecting the sensitive feelings of those who admit they’ve compared me to a murderous government infiltrator.

  194. paulie

    Why do I see advertisements for homosexual dating websites? What they do in their private time is their business, but I don’t want it shoved in my face.

    We don’t control the content of google ads (if we did, there would be a bunch I would get rid of, such as the nonsense about “traditional” marriage) so you can take it up with them. And there is no reason homosexual dating sites should be advertised any less than heterosexual dating sites.

  195. Wes Wagner

    I see from the reflector Dr. Phillies has noticed that the LNC Ex Com had a teleconference about the LPO lawsuit.

    I seem to recall this whole issue exploded a couple years ago when the last LNC leadership had a predetermined outcome for an ex-comm meeting without actually getting the full story.

  196. Alan Pyeatt

    “Sorry, but my debate-mobile does not feature crumple zones for protecting the sensitive feelings of those who admit they’ve compared me to a murderous government infiltrator.”

    Oh, please! This, from the same guy who called my wife a hypocrite, and then whined like a baby when I referred to him as a faux libertarian!

    And to refresh your memory, you were attacking people – including me – LONG before any discussion of you as a possible cognitive infiltrator came up.

  197. Brian Holtz

    called my wife a hypocrite

    Facts matter. I did not use the word “hypocrite” to describe her. I repeat yet again:

    I said two specific behaviors were “hypocritical” when done by the same person. I’d dare you to dispute my accusation, but Jill already apologized for one of the behaviors in question.

    Every time you bring up this incident, I will remind readers that Jill already conceded on it.

    I don’t “whine” about your “faux libertarian” mud-slinging — I just point it out as typical of your commitment to “Truth”.

    attacking people

    You need to learn the difference between attacking a person and arguing against the validity or consistency of their positions. You do far more of the former than I do, and I challenge you to quote me doing any name-calling like “faux libertarian” or “infiltrator” as you have done.

    If you feel bad after debating me, that doesn’t prove I “attacked” you. You should try to keep your emotional investment in your positions proportional to your ability to defend them.

  198. paulie

    I see from the reflector Dr. Phillies has noticed that the LNC Ex Com had a teleconference about the LPO lawsuit.

    Not much happened. I wasn’t on the call (mixed up what day it would be) but here are the provisional minutes:

    Executive Committee Teleconference

    May 28, 2013

    The meeting was called to order at 9:03 PM (all times Eastern) to discuss the outcome in the lawsuit

    Reeves et al. v. Wagner et al. (regarding which party leads the legitimate Oregon affiliate).

    Executive Committee members in attendance: Geoff Neale (chair), Lee Wrights (vice-chair), Tim Hagan

    (treasurer), David Blau (secretary), Bill Redpath (at large), Dan Weiner (region 4), Jim Lark (region 5s).

    Other LNC members listening: Mark Hinkle (at large), Norm Olsen (region 1), Dianna Visek (region

    6), Gary Johnson (region 7). Non-LNC members listening: Carla Howell (LP executive director), Alicia

    Mattson (NV).

    Mr. Neale asked for input from the EC regarding whether the ruling requires any LNC action. Dr. Lark

    asked whether LNC counsel has reviewed this opinion — Mr. Neale indicated that had not occurred. Mr.

    Blau explained the procedural posture of the lawsuit, and provided an interpretation of the opinion.

    In response to a question by Ms. Visek about what action to take, if any, Mr. Wrights suggested that

    we should forward the opinion to our counsel for review and advice. Mr. Neale explained that our

    bylaws clearly state that we have a responsibility to protect our trademark insofar as we permit affiliates

    to use it, that we can have only one affiliate per state, and that the only action we can take against

    affiliates is disaffiliation, although he expressed a desire not to take that action. He wished the record

    to reflect that he proposed disaffiliation of Arizona in 1999. Ms. Visek asked what fallout occurred from

    that disaffiliation. Mr. Neale opined that the state party recovered adequately, while Dr. Lark noted

    that there were several lawsuits and Arizona did not place Harry Browne on the ballot in the following

    presidential election.

    Mr. Neale will convey the opinion to LNC counsel, and recommended that the EC take no action at this

    time. Mr. Neale expressed his belief that no executive session was needed, to general agreement. No

    action was taken as a result of the EC meeting.

    Mr. Wrights moved to adjourn. Without objection, the meeting was adjourned at 9:34 PM.

  199. Alan Pyeatt

    O.k. Bruce, fair enough: you called Jill’s behavior “hypocritical” instead of calling her a hypocrite. But come on, this is an attack: “Either Alan uncritically parroted Truther disinformation, or he lied. Period.”

    And while we’re setting the record straight, let’s not forget that YOU’RE the one who made the connection between cognitive infiltration and Anna Mae Pictou’s murder. I simply provided an historical example of organizations being infiltrated and damaged in a COINTEL operation. Then when you made that claim, my response was, “I wasn’t necessarily accusing you, and I pointed out in my post that your question to Andy wasn’t positive proof. But the fact that you wanted him to provide ‘the names of the persons in the LP most likely to be a government informant or provocateur’ sure is reminiscent of the COINTELPRO tactics the FBI has used in the past to create dissension among AIM and Black Panther members. So if the shoe fits, go ahead and wear it.”

    And I stand by those remarks. If the shoe fits, go ahead and wear it. If it doesn’t fit, then don’t act like you’ve been insulted.

  200. NewFederalist

    Actually, I think he meant Brian not Bruce. Bruce would have probably meant Bruce Cohen but I think Alan mistakenly said Bruce instead of Brian Holtz.

  201. George Phillies

    @318 There are interesting questions here:
    Who asked for the meeting?
    What was the point of the meeting, as opposed to an email giving the result?
    Where is the enthusiasm for the good news that our Oregon affiliate has won a devastating litigatory victory?
    On the bright side, there is a fascinating revelation, namely that in 1999 Geoff Neale wanted to handle the 1999 Arizona issue correctly via a disaffiliation vote.

  202. Alan Pyeatt

    TLR @ 326: What action would you like to have seen? Sounds to me like the situation has been resolved, and therefore no action by the LNC was necessary. But I’m not as familiar with the situation in Oregon as a lot of people, so maybe there’s something left unresolved?

  203. T. Lee Ryde

    Never said I wanted any LNC action. I just said it sounded like a bureaucratic do nothing meeting which makes board members feel like they are doing something about something while not doing anything. Very common in corporations and government.

  204. Brian Holtz

    Either Alan uncritically parroted Truther disinformation, or he lied. Period.

    That’s not an “attack” on you character — it’s a well-defended claim about a particular statement you made:

    aluminum or magnesium alloys liquified on impact, as the “official story” of 9/11 claims [...] aluminum and magnesium alloys don’t liquify under the normal temperature and air pressure of a September day in Washington, DC.

    Neither Popular Mechanics nor any “official” report on 9/11 ever claimed that the metals of Flight 77 melted from solid to liquid. My conclusion about your statement follows as a straightforward inference, and I stand by it.

    YOU’RE the one who made the connection between cognitive infiltration and Anna Mae Pictou’s murder.

    Let readers judge. You wrote:

    This isn’t proof that Brian’s an infiltrator either, but stirring up shit among the target group and getting them to fight against each other is also a common COINTELPRO tactic. A good example is Anna Mae Pictou (a.k.a. Anna Mae Aquash), who was “bad-jacketed” by FBI operatives within AIM. Then one day, she was discovered dead [..] two bullet holes were found in the back of her skull. And all this was over a few gold mining leases in the sacred Black Hills.

    If you want to compare me to murderous infiltrators, at least have the intellectual courage to stand by your comparison.

  205. Alan Pyeatt

    BH @ 329: “If you want to compare me to murderous infiltrators, at least have the intellectual courage to stand by your comparison.”

    Me @ 329: “And I stand by those remarks. If the shoe fits, go ahead and wear it. If it doesn’t fit, then don’t act like you’ve been insulted.”

    You also left out this part of my post on the other thread: ““I wasn’t necessarily accusing you, and I pointed out in my post that your question to Andy wasn’t positive proof. “

  206. Brian Holtz

    You “stand by” your remark that if I’m comparable to a murderous infiltrator, then you’re comparing me to a murderous infiltrator?

    How courageous of you.

    “This isn’t proof that Alan Pyeatt beats his wife, but getting emotional during arguments and then introducing the topic of bodily assault is also a common wife-beater behavior.”

    I’m not necessarily accusing you of beating your wife, and your behavior so far isn’t positive proof.

  207. Dave Terry

    AP @ 324; “Whoops, I did it again. Aargh! Yes, I meant to say Brian. My bad.”

    Perfectly understandable Alan, after a few years of “dialoguing” with Cohen, his name DOES seem to come up often; rather that some other epithet. :>(

  208. Alan Pyeatt

    Yes. Of course, Brian’s technique is much smoother than Bruce’s, as for example his claim @ 329 that I said the infamous Popular Mechanics article claimed that the alleged airplane had “melted,” when I said no such thing, or that the article used the words “liquify” and “impact,” when as detailed on the “Crackpots” thread I didn’t say that (what I had claimed is that the PM article described a process of liquification under impact). Or his denial that 9/11 was “new Pearl Harbor,” only to admit that there was indeed a causal connection between 9/11 and the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, and then conflate that with “insiderism” to show how right he is. And of course, his a priori limiting of a person’s arguments being either parroting of disinformation or lying – in effect, wishing away the possibilities that a person’s argument might be correct, or that they have made an honest mistake – is infuriating.

    But really, to claim that somebody is either parroting disinformation or lying, and then claim that he hasn’t attacked their character, is just ludicrous.

    Do I think Brian is a cognitive infiltrator? Based on the history of groups like the FBI (for which I used Anna Mae Pictou as an example), based on the history of libertarians with informers (see for example the video of Karl Hess and Robert Anton Wilson that I posted earlier, based on the tremendous amounts of money and power that the LP threatens, and based on Brian’s methods of argument – yes, I think that is probable. Not certain (“I wasn’t necessarily accusing you, and I pointed out in my post that your question to Andy wasn’t positive proof”), but probable.

    Would that be comparable to murder? Well, if he’s intentionally trying to shield the true 9/11 culprits, then that certainly would be complicity. And by Brian’s own admission, the events of 9/11 led to at least two wars, including the invasion of a country that had no connection with 9/11, the case could be made that complicity with the crimes of 9/11 lead to the unnecessary deaths of several innocent people. So when he made that suggestion on the other thread, instead of denying it, I chose to leave it up to each individual’s judgment: “If the shoe fits, go ahead and wear it.”

    Then there was entire discussion on the “Crackpots” thread about how he wasn’t questioning 9/11 truthers’ sincerity because his accusations all used the word “or” – again, assuming a priori that the possibilities he suggests are the ONLY two possibilities – you have to wonder how anybody can take him seriously. And now he doubles down by saying that this isn’t an attack: “Either Alan uncritically parroted Truther disinformation, or he lied. Period.” That’s just ludicrous. Of course it’s an attack.

  209. Brian Holtz

    Re: liquify/melt, I’m just going to rewind the tape here and let readers judge for themselves:

    PM: In this case, one wing hit the ground; the other was sheared off by the force of the impact with the Pentagon’s load-bearing columns, explains Sozen, who specializes in the behavior of concrete buildings. What was left of the plane flowed into the structure in a state closer to a liquid than a solid mass.

    AP: aluminum or magnesium alloys liquified on impact, as the “official story” of 9/11 claims [...] aluminum and magnesium alloys don’t liquify under the normal temperature and air pressure of a September day in Washington, DC. [...] I said the PM article described materials changing from one state of matter to another

    BH: Neither Popular Mechanics nor any “official” report on 9/11 ever claimed that the metals of Flight 77 melted from solid to liquid.

    AP: his claim @ 329 that I said the infamous Popular Mechanics article claimed that the alleged airplane had “melted,”

    Was Pyeatt misleading in his “alloys liquified” reporting of the PM claim?

    Was Pyeatt accurate in claiming that I said he used the word “melted”?

    The answers are obvious.

    Falsus in uno, falsus in omnibus.

  210. Brian Holtz

    to claim that somebody is either parroting disinformation or lying, and then claim that he hasn’t attacked their character, is just ludicrous.

    I’ve defended my claim, and I stand by it. I can’t stop readers from making their own judgements about you based on what I demonstrate about your statements. I target your statements; you target my character and alleged private motives.

    I’m glad to hear you can now finally finger me as “probab[ly]” a “cognitive infiltrator”. My response is still that my position on 9/11 is not demonstrably any different from 75 of the 80 most famous libertarians. How do you explain their silence/disbelief about your 9/11 Intelligent Design theory? Are we all “cognitive infiltrators”?

    And what about the 9/11 Truthers who say that your faked-calls and no-jet theories are attempts to discredit the Truth movement?

    Is anybody not a “cognitive infiltrator”?

    if he’s intentionally trying to shield the true 9/11 culprits, then that certainly would be complicity.

    “If”? “Would be”? Is your theory about me so ridiculous that you can’t even face its implications? If you really believed your “infiltrator” calumny, you’d have written “He’s probably intentionally trying to shield the true 9/11 culprits, and such shielding is complicity.”

    Own your theories, Mr. Pyeatt.

  211. Brian Holtz

    AP: his denial that 9/11 was “new Pearl Harbor”

    We’ve debated this at sufficient length that you cannot possibly plead ignorance or sloppiness. I’ve never in my life said “9/11 was not a new Pearl Harbor”. Why do you keep misrepresenting me? Why not just quote my words? For example:

    • If 9/11 was designed to advance the policy agenda of the PNAC report, then 9/11 was clearly a monumental failure.
    • [The PNAC white paper] did not say a new Pearl Harbor is in any way desired. The PNAC report is about military force restructuring, and said “the prime directive for transformation will be to design and deploy a global missile defense system”.
    • I repeated my debunking of the ubiquitous Truther claim that the PNAC white paper is a smoking gun that the insiders wanted a “new Pearl Harbor”. You then tried to bait-and-switch this into a dispute about whether 9/11 led to wars and expanded defense spending, which nobody ever denied. It remains possible that you simply don’t understand how much freight the trutherweb thinks its PNAC factoid can carry.
  212. Brian Holtz

    So if I understand Alan’s theory of 9/11 Intelligent Design, then am I on the same team as Khalid Sheikh Mohammed? Or is he somehow being coerced into play his role?

    By the way: if I’m in on the conspiracy, then aren’t I now at great personal risk? What other alleged insider would be an easier target for zealous Truthers than I am? And now that my cover’s been blown, how can The Conspiracy trust that I will hold up under the strain of public exposure? Wouldn’t it be safer for them to just eliminate me, and make it look like an accident?

  213. George Phillies

    There were references way back there to 1999 events in Arizona. There were references to Arizona 1999. My book Funding Liberty (on Amazon, in paperback format; http://3mpub.com/phillies/funding liberty.htm) covered the 1994-2002 LP issues, including this chapter:

    Funding Liberty!

    Chapter 17

    Arizona, Land of the Two Libertarian Parties

    We now take an aside from Presidential politics to visit scenic Arizona, land of the two Libertarian Parties. Or perhaps one Libertarian Party. The legal and political situation in Arizona has been, to put it mildly, complex. A full recounting of Arizona events might well consume a full book this size. I am not writing that book, so you shall see here a compressed description of events.

    I begin with the cast of characters. For the past half-decade there have been two organized Libertarian groups in Arizona, one of which regularly sued the other to gain ownership of the Party. Each group has associated with it a series of different geographic and other names. In the Summer of 2000 names and acronyms included

    Formal name

    Arizona Libertarian

    Party

    Arizona Libertarian Party,

    Incorporated

    acronym

    ALP

    ALPI

    noted city

    Phoenix

    Tucson

    noted county

    Maricopa

    Pima

    distinguished

    member(s)

    Ernie Hancock

    Liz Andreasen

    Mike Haggard

    Peter Schmerl

    John Zajac

    My sources agree that both groups have supporters in both cities. The ALP and ALPI acronyms are very similar; I’ll refer to the two sides as the Phoenix group (ALP) and the Tucson group (ALPI). My friends who have moved to Arizona uniformly speak favorably of most of the people in both groups.

    The Tucson group won the latest round of litigation and is currently recognized by the State as the legal Libertarian Party in Arizona. The Phoenix group has formally dissolved at the moment. The Phoenix group has never filed litigation against the Tucson group, and says it has no intent to litigate at present. It also appears to have little intent of cooperating with or supporting the Tucson group or its candidates. In the absence of third-party litigation that might affect the situation, relationships between the Tucson and Phoenix groups are unlikely to change in the foreseeable future.

    The two groups are split by many issues. Historically, each side has been willing to lay out its position openly, so I can say with reasonable accuracy what each side says it is fighting about. I have spoken to a reasonable number of Arizona Libertarians, members of the Phoenix and Tucson groups. I certainly have not spoken to all of them. These people didn’t all talk about all the same topics, but—in separate conversations—for the most part they agreed with each other. I should specifically thank Paul Schauble and Melinda Pillsbury-Foster, who assembled time-lines of past events. I should also thank Ernie Hancock, Paul Schauble, and Chris Tavares, who sent corrections to an earlier draft of this chapter.

    For many questions there are subtexts and buried issues. The formal question dividing the two groups is ‘who is the legally-recognized Libertarian Party in Arizona?’ A rational subtext is ‘why does anyone care?’. What do you get out of having state recognition? In fact, there are concrete issues that appear to divide the two organizations.

    A more Libertarian question might be ‘To what extent can the state regulate the organization of a political party?’ The Phoenix group had conducted its activities while not following a variety of State regulations, many of which could be argued to be inconsistent with Eu vs. California, simply by going about its business and ignoring the state. State officials did not attempt to enforce their own statutes. The ultimate litigation between the Phoenix and Tucson groups was filed by the Tucson group, not the state, and was settled not over the state election code but over the technicalities of Roberts’ Rules of Order as several of the most esoteric of those rules pertained to events at a state convention.

    In a traditional detective novel, the hero often makes progress by asking ‘where is the money?’. There are good reasons to suppose that money was a major issue behind the conflict, both at the state level and at the national level.

    Money? Arizona has a so-called ‘Clean Elections’ Law, under which public money goes to funding election campaigns, if the State legislature appropriates the money. A candidate has to raise a modest amount of money, and then receives a very large payment from the state to fund his campaign. The ratio of taxpayer money to money raised from private donors could be as large as ten to one. Possession and use of this money became a substantial political issue. Details of the Clean Election law and its municipal equivalents have been the subject of litigation, and have changed over the course of time.

    Substantial Issues Dividing the Arizona Factions

    What were the two Arizona groups arguing about? Why did they care which of them was the state-recognized Libertarian Party? The substantial benefits of state recognition were rather limited. The largest single benefit is that state parties are entitled to copies of the voter rolls. These rolls reveal Party affiliations of registered voters. Because the Phoenix group viewed their members to be the registered Libertarian voters, this list was their one reliable way of finding their own members.

    In Arizona, state recognition gives a state party very little power. Below the Presidential level, the State Party does not control who gets on the ballot as a Libertarian. In Arizona candidates get on the primary election ballot by collecting signatures, and advance from the primary election to the general election by winning their primary. A State Party organization can refuse to endorse or support candidates who do not support all of its positions, but access to the primary and general election ballots is controlled by the voters, not by the state committee. In Arizona, primaries are open. Independent voters can vote in the Libertarian Party primary election. There is no guarantee that the winner of a Libertarian primary has any support from the state’s 18,000 Libertarians rather than the state’s 350,000 independents. Indeed, in an earlier election cycle the Phoenix group was the legal State Party. It had put forth Tom Rawls as its candidate for governor. An anonymous last moment mailing, accusing Rawls of financial irregularities, led to his defeat in the primary by a candidate supported by the Tucson group.

    The two groups also had different strategies. Interviews with Tucson supporters clarified the Tucson group’s underlying strategy. Their plan was to run paper candidates who would do minimal campaigning for municipal office, raise money to qualify the candidates for Clean Elections money, and accept the Clean Elections money. Clean Elections money would then primarily be used to strengthen the state party by registering additional members of the state party. The difficulty with this approach, which was recognized by the Tucson group, is that a Libertarian registrant who has had no other contact with the party is unlikely to be activated, and will likely just sit there as campaigns swirl around him.

    To overcome this difficulty, the Tucson group put forth a sound strategy emphasizing local organization, based on electing people as Precinct Committeemen. Each committeeman and committeewoman was to do organizing work in his or her own ward and precinct to convert previously-registered voters into reliable activists. The committeeperson approach had the significant challenge that state committeepeople were elected on a rigid timeline fixed by the State of Arizona. Volunteers could only be elected on the state’s schedule. Readers will recognize obvious work-arounds to the State Election code.

    The Phoenix group had not been especially interested in Party registration drives, such as the one launched by the National Committee. In the early 1990s, registration growth was tracking the growth in party activities, and was in fact growing year after year. It was reasonably expected that by 2004 or so the Party would have attained permanent major party status by virtue of having enough registered voters. Some activists, noting the success of the 1994 Buttrick Campaign at bringing in new Libertarians, felt that major party status might be achieved sooner, perhaps by 1998. With enough money, an adequate count of registered voters could be attained earlier than 2004. However, the count of registered voters by itself bought the State Party few particular benefits. The Phoenix group believed that the money spent registering additional Libertarian Party members would better have been spent strengthening the State Party by running better elections and referenda.

    The Phoenix group was as interested in the Clean Elections Act money as the Tucson group, but for an entirely different reason. The Phoenix group viewed acceptance of Clean Elections Act money as a violation of the Party’s principles and By-Laws. They vehemently disapproved of the Tucson group’s decision to accept State Clean Elections Act money, and refused to support any Libertarian party candidate who chose to accept that money. Part of this dispute apparently went away with changes in the state election law. For candidates for statewide office the dispute remains active.

    Historical Notes on Arizona Libertarianism

    The Libertarian Party of Arizona was founded in 1975, and put its first candidates on the ballot in 1976. One of these was Michael Emerling (Cloud), who ran for U.S. Congress in Tucson and received 2.4% of the vote. The Party progressed and grew. Its 1989 State Chair was Peter Schmerl, who was a Pima County activist. By 1990, one can identify early strains of the disputes between the Party’s two factions. An article written by Michael Cloud and distributed by the Marrou campaign explained why Party candidates should take matching funds if available. Other Libertarians have expressed the contrary view. The issue refers back to the Non-Initiation of Force statement, which will be discussed in this Chapter’s Appendix.

    The Arizona Party continued to grow. Cloud moved to work for the Marrou for President (Libertarian, 1992) campaign. On September 1, 1991, Cloud appeared in Chicago before the Libertarian National Committee, reiterating the campaign’s desire to work closely with the National Party. In particular, addressing the LNC he indicated that ‘the campaign’s books are open for our (the LNC’s) inspection at any time’ and ‘all new names obtained during the campaign would be considered the co-property of the LNC and would be turned over to both the national and state parties’. In 1992, Cloud and the Marrou campaign went their separate ways.

    By 1996 the Presidential Campaign which Cloud had for a time directed was associated took a different stand. The 2300+ names and addresses of Browne donors cost the Libertarian National Committee more than $58,000 dollars to acquire.

    In 1994, Arizona Libertarian John Buttrick ran for State Governor. He was later a Libertarian National Committee member and in 2001 was appointed as a judge by sitting Republican Governor Jane Hull. The Phoenix Party by this date was vigorous and active. It opened its own office, and covered expenses in part by raffling off a series of assault rifles and other weapons. The choice of raffle items gained significant public attention. The first conflict between the Phoenix and Tucson disputes reportedly happened in late 1994, with a dispute over ownership of a bank account held in the name of the Arizona Libertarian Party. The money eventually returned to the Phoenix group.

    In 1995, the Tucson group invoked their interpretation of the laws covering internal party organization (ARS 16-521 to 525) to form the “Arizona Libertarian Party State Committee” and filed with the Arizona Secretary of State under that name. Arizona does not have laws restricting political parties from using extremely similar names, so there was room to disagree as to whether the ALPSC was the current Arizona Libertarian party, or was a new Party that had a name highly similar to the name of another, older Party. In April 1995, the Libertarian National Committee weighed in with a letter to the Tucson group, demanding that they stop using the name. The Tucson group continued to use the name. The LNC did nothing further to defend control of the name ‘Libertarian’.

    1995 brought the first of a series of Party State Conventions at which disputes over proxies, By-Laws, and Rules of Order became prominent. 1995 also brought the first intervention by the LNC in Arizona State Party affairs, in the form of a proposal by the National Party for a party registration drive. Phoenix group State Chair Tamara Clark sent a letter expressing the State Party’s gratitude for assistance, but expressing concern that the registration drive might not be competently run, in which case the State Party might take the blame. The State Party asked that it have direct control of the effort or that National Party give the State Party a ‘hold harmless’ statement. The Phoenix group did not view a registration campaign as the most effective use of activist efforts at this time.

    Voter registration instead became part of the Kahn for Mayor campaign in Tucson, which by report received $50,000 in state Clean Elections funds, and apparently used the larger part of those funds to register Libertarian voters. The National Party apparently provided manpower for the effort. The Tucson group then launched the first of a series of lawsuits to establish its claim to be the legitimate State Party.

    The National Committee staff was highly responsive to the Tucson group. When in 1998 the leadership of the Tucson group claimed to the National Committee that they had secured control of a merged state party, the name of their claimed state chair immediately appeared on the National Party web site as the true state chair. When the Phoenix group told the National Committee Staff that the National Committee had been misinformed, at that someone else was state chair, the National Committee Staff refused to make the correction or withdraw the name of the listed chair. It continued to list the Tucson group’s state chair on its web pages. Given the dispute, an impartial National Party could have noted on its web pages that there was an internal Party dispute in the state, and then listed either both State Chairs or neither State Chair. The pages instead listed only one State Chair, even after the National Party’s attention was called to the issue. Thus, prior to the LNC action on the affiliation issue the National Party had already intervened in the Libertarian dispute in Arizona, supporting one side over the other.

    The National Committee Chooses an Affiliated Arizona Party and Experiences the Consequences of Its Actions

    At its August 1999 meeting the Libertarian National Committee entered the fray by invoking its own By-Laws, specifically

    “ARTICLE 8: AFFILIATE PARTIES

    6. The National Committee shall have the power to revoke the status of any affiliate party, for cause, by a vote of 3/4 of the entire National Committee. The affiliate party may challenge the revocation of its status by written appeal to the Judicial Committee within 30 days of receipt of notice of such revocation. Failure to appeal within 30 days shall confirm the revocation and bar any later challenge or appeal. The National Committee shall not revoke the status of any affiliate party within six months prior to a Regular Convention.”

    After an extremely long meeting and a long series of motions that were defeated or ruled out of order by National Chair David Bergland, the National Committee passed a motion targeting its Arizona affiliate. According to the Minutes of that meeting, “The motion on disaffiliation passed with 14 affirmative votes: Bergland, Bisson, Butler, Dehn, Dixon, Franke, Fylstra, Givot, Hall, Lark, Neale, Ruwart, Schwarz, and Smith. Buttrick and Tuniewicz voted against the motion. Savyon abstained.”

    Having discarded its historic state affiliate, the LNC then voted to poll its Arizona members to determine which state party group should be given affiliation. This innocent-sounding step led to considerable difficulties, because there were three groups involved, namely the Phoenix group, the Tucson group, and the National Party. Membership lists for these three groups were substantially non-overlapping. In particular, the rolls of the National Party included many dues-paying, oath-signing National Party members who were registered to vote as Democrats or Republicans, and who were thus from the point of view of the Phoenix group not Libertarians at all. Furthermore, there were 15,000 registered Libertarians in the state, all members of the Phoenix group, most of whom were not National Party members; these Libertarians were not polled. The National Party’s poll allegedly indicated a preference for the Tucson group, so the National Committee cited the poll as a justification when it made the Tucson group its state affiliate in Arizona.

    Only gradually does the recognition appear to have percolated through the National Committee that the National Party’s actions had had no effect on the Arizona state government, which continued to recognize the Phoenix group as the lawful Libertarian State Party of Arizona.

    Discrepancies between the National Committee’s actions and the requirements of the Party By-Laws are apparent. The Party By-Laws specify that disaffiliation must be “for cause”. “For cause” is a term of art with a very well understood meaning, namely that the party against which action is being taken must have done something wrong. Furthermore, that wrong has to be specified, so that the accused can have due process by offering a defense.

    What wrong had the ALP committed? The assertion was made in some quarters that the cause was that the LNC could not tell which group was its affiliate. It is not clear how the inability of the LNC to understand what was happening in Arizona could constitute ’cause’ against the Phoenix group. Indeed, on the date of the disaffiliation there was ongoing litigation between the two groups as to which group was the real Libertarian Party in Arizona. The Phoenix group recommended that the National Party should postpone action until the judge ruled; their recommendation was not accepted by the National Committee.

    It is extremely hard to avoid the conclusion that the LNC’s disaffiliation of the Phoenix group violated Party By-Laws, which require that the disaffiliation be ‘for cause’. No rational cause was specified in the motion, nor does such a cause appear to be noted in the LNC Minutes. As was shown at the start of the book when ‘support’ and ‘conflict of interest’ were discussed, the Libertarian National Committee does not appear to have been heavily attached to careful textual analysis of its own By-laws. It is therefore unsurprising that the National Committee’s interpretation of ‘for cause’ was situationally driven.

    It is important to emphasize that the ‘for cause’ issue that was placed before the Libertarian National Committee, and the issues then being litigated in Arizona, are entirely separate. The Arizona State Courts eventually resolved the questions at hand on the basis of the State Party By-Laws and Roberts’ Rules of Order. The National Committee did not hear or review these arguments. To say ‘the National Party did not obey its own by-laws in the decision its made’ does not speak to the question of which group was the legitimate state party in Arizona.

    A variety of other reasons for disaffiliating the Phoenix group have been suggested:

    There is significant circumstantial evidence that some factions within the Libertarian National Committee were pursuing disaffiliation in order to secure a friendlier state party delegation at the next National Convention. In 1996, the Arizona Party delegation had been filled with supporters of Rick Tompkins, who was supported by the Phoenix group. There were sound reasons to believe that a delegation to the 2000 Convention from the Tucson group would be more supportive of the Browne faction, while a delegation from the Phoenix group would be more sympathetic to any of Browne’s opponents.

    By changing its affiliate, the National Committee derived a direct financial benefit. The Phoenix group wanted to keep state and national party memberships separate. The Tucson group joined the Unified Membership Plan. Under the Unified Membership Plan, the National Party collected all membership dues for state and national groups. What did the LNC do with the money it raised? Under UMP state membership dues are doled out to the state party at the rate of one dollar per month. If you joined your state party in January, part of your state membership dues would not reach your state party until the following New Year. For current members, this delay was cancelled by startup payments, but if party membership grew new member dues reached the state organization well after members actually joined. In Summer 1999, the LNC planned that through Project Archimedes it would experience enormous membership growth.

    The National Party also used the membership renewal letters to ask for additional contributions. State Parties received a very modest part of those contributions, as an increase in the $1 per month they were paid for each member, namely

    Members or contributors who have contributed $100 or more to the national party in the last 12 months, $2/month; $250 or more, $3/month; $500 or more, $4/month; $1000 or more, $5/month.

    Many members make their one extra donation for the year at the same time that they renew their memberships. Under UMP, state contribution fundraising at the time of membership renewals was transferred en bloc to the National Party. Under UMP, the National Party kept all but a pittance of those extra contributions. Thus, by joining UMP a state was likely to transfer its donors in large part to the National Party.

    Finally, the National Party received a financial benefit because it did not maintain an escrow account for state dues owed under the UMP program. Dues were instead spent more or less when received by the National Party. For new members, UMP states were effectively giving the National Party an interest-free loan averaging half of the year’s state dues. The National Party piously hoped that future income would permit it to make UMP payments to state parties in a timely way, much the way the Federal government piously hopes that future Social Security taxes will allow the Federal government to pay Social Security benefits in a timely way when their recipients expect them. In late 2001, the pious hope came extremely close to expiring. The National Office made an emergency electronic appeal for donations to allow it to cover UMP payments, and then claimed that the appeal permitted the payments to be made. It now appears that the National Office’s initial representation of its financial situation had been disingenuous, and that it would in any event have been able to cover its obligations to the states. The piety of the hope had still been exposed to the membership.

    The Phoenix group did not avail itself of its opportunity under the By-Laws to appeal the disaffiliation decision to the Party Judicial Committee, so after the statutory 30 days the disaffiliation became final. It appears that the bulk of the National Committee misunderstood the implications of these events. The National Committee appears to have believed that the Phoenix group had accepted the validity of the disaffiliation decision and had therefore agreed that the Tucson group was now the state party that the Phoenix group should support. The Phoenix group had in fact concluded that Libertarian National Committee, Inc., had the privilege of choosing its own affiliates, had willingly and voluntarily chosen the Tucson group as its affiliate, and that the Phoenix group was no longer responsible for the actions of LNC, Inc. or the Tucson group. In particular, Libertarian National Committee, Inc. and its chosen affiliate now had the privilege of getting their Presidential candidate on the Arizona ballot.

    The National Committee also appears to have assumed that the State Party was legally required to run the Presidential candidate chosen at the National Committee’s national convention. Apparently a telephone call was made to an official in the Arizona State government, asking whether such an obligation existed. The answer was in the affirmative. It was clearly not recognized that this is a highly esoteric legal question, referring to an issue that may well not have arisen before in the history of Arizona, and that a credible answer required a written inquiry and extensive research by the Arizona state government. The minor detail that, while the Tucson group was willing to put Browne on the ballot, it did not have ballot access, was ignored. Also, once the Phoenix Group had been disaffiliated, it is not clear why it was being assumed by the National Committee that the Phoenix group would honor the nominating convention of the Libertarian Party of the United States and not, say, the Revolutionary Socialist Party, since the Phoenix group, by the choice of the LNC, had no further affiliation with Libertarian National Committee, Inc.

    Based on my conversations with its members, the Phoenix group did not view itself as being bound by decisions of political parties with which it was not affiliated, including the Revolutionary Socialists, the Democrats,…or the Libertarian Party of the United States. They emphasized to me that the LNC disaffiliated them, not the other way around, so National Party members had no legitimate complaint when the Phoenix Group accepted the validity of the National Committee’s action. The National Committee had the idea that it could simply send the Phoenix group on its way, and had done so. Seemingly, the National Committee had assumed that without National Party affiliation the Phoenix group would roll over and die. This assumption proved to be invalid.

    The Incoming Train Wreck

    In 1999 it was already obvious that to a fair number of people that the split between the two Arizona Libertarian Parties might well cause problems with ballot access in Arizona. Phoenix group members attending the Summer 1999 LNC meeting specifically raised the issue. LNC member and Arizona resident John Buttrick raised it again at the November LNC meeting. In December 1999, Libertarian Bob Hunt raised the issue to a wider Libertarian audience via email lists. In Spring 2000, ballot access expert Richard Winger yet again raised this issue with the Libertarian body politic. No action was taken by any group, during the statutory petitioning period, to put a national candidate on the ballot in Arizona as an independent.

    Prior to the National Convention I sent a memo to a variety of Libertarian lists, pointing out the issues and the alternatives—none of which looked very promising at the time. That memo, which had nothing to do with my campaign for National Chair, came after a bit of discussion on the Presidential nomination issue. Here’s what I reported in early Summer 2000:

    “In Arizona, there appear to be only two points at which being the state- recognized party actually has material consequences:

    1) The major party is given the list of registered voters.

    (2) The major party appoints Presidential Electors and determines whose name will appear on the election Ballot. There are also points where being the state-recognized Party has political significance but does not inhibit freedom of action.

    The first point affects how people run for office in Arizona. The second point matters for the rest of us. The core issue is that the Phoenix group agrees that the LNC has chosen the Tucson group as its affiliate. This means, in the Phoenix group’s opinion, that the Tucson group has the privilege and duty of getting the LNC’s Presidential candidate on the ballot.

    I will again avoid names, but it’s even money that the candidate we choose in Anaheim will not be the Arizona Party’s choice. If the choices differ, the LPUS Presidential candidate will not be on the ballot in a simple way in all 50 states.

    How can Libertarians outside of Arizona get around this? I now list alternatives. I’m not saying which one I support. I’m not saying each one is a good idea.

    Alternatives

    We have several choices of action here as ways of dealing with the issue. I first note several solutions which would work if they succeeded, but which are not obviously likely to succeed.

    1) Nominate a mutually acceptable candidate. This requires that there is a mutually acceptable candidate.

    2) Put our candidate on the Arizona ballot by petition. This requires nine and a half thousand signatures (reports Richard Winger) due by June 14. [June 29 was the date under the pre-1999 law.] Winger noted this option on the lpus lists several weeks ago. Almost no one bought into it. Given available time, the logistics approach the impossible. Also, the petition must name the candidate. We can’t, e.g., petition for Hess and then try to substitute Gorman or Browne after the convention.

    I am reasonably certain that no current Presidential candidate has the resources to do his own petitioning. If the LNC runs a drive for one of our candidates, that drive must be done in advance of the convention, and must specify the candidate by name. A candidate with ballot access in Arizona would have a real leg up on getting the nomination, a leg up courtesy of the LNC. I report with absolute certainty that such an action by the LNC would have very severe internal repercussions within the Libertarian Party. (I have no evidence that anyone is trying to do this, and it is probably too late now.)

    3) Sue the Arizona group. Make them run our candidate. My good legal sources say this approach will fail badly, either in the State Courts or the Federal Courts. Also, this approach will permanently poison relations between LPUS and the Phoenix group.

    4) Post convention, the Libertarian National Committee could announce that it had reconsidered. For example, it could decide that the Bylaws require removals to be for cause, and it did not have adequate cause to strip the Phoenix group of affiliation. If the Phoenix group accepted re-affiliation, our candidate would go on the ballot. However, my sources on the National Committee say that current LNC members will not vote for this approach. If you want to try this, at Anaheim you need to replace a majority of the National Committee.

    There are also paths that do not solve the problem in 2000, but could solve the problem by 2004.

    5) Ignore it. Hope the issue goes away. It’s worked for other parties. Richard Winger has listed major-party examples in the 20th century where this approach was followed. A State Party did not run the national candidate in one election. They did in the next. If enough personalities turn over on both sides, many things become possible.

    6) Get ballot access for the group the LNC recognizes. This approach requires a modest change of name for the Tucson group—not a problem; Al Gore’s party is not the “Democratic” in one state—and registering a large number of people into that party.

    7) Start from the beginning. Get state recognition under some name for a third Libertarian group, one that does not presently exist, does not have a long list of feuds, does not allow for some period the principals of the first two groups to serve as its statewide officers, and which has as a membership condition for those principals that they may not resort to litigation against any of the (now three) Libertarian groups in Arizona.

    Finally, there’s a chance to beat up on a government agency through the court system:

    8) Sue Arizona. Insist we are Constitutionally entitled to be able to petition for ballot status for our candidate after our National Convention, which is not unreasonably late in the year. This approach, says my good legal sources, is reasonably promising. [[GP: Indeed, this is what we did, and it eventually worked.]]

    I’m not sure that’s all the choices that exist, but it’s all the ones I’ve heard.

    Listening to Arizona

    I called people in the Phoenix group. They’re the ones with ballot access. I am reporting what is perceived and stated, as I understood it from members of the Phoenix group. Remember “X is not true” is independent of “group A believes that X is not true”.

    1) Does the ALP want its affiliation back? So far as I can tell, many of them aren’t very interested. They are planning on recruiting, running candidates, supporting or opposing referenda,…not on arguing with LNC. Their position, so far as I can tell, is ‘the LNC chose its affiliate. The LNC gets to live with its decision.’

    2) Did the ALP ask the LNC to decide which group was the real Libertarian party in Arizona? The position I was given was that ALP members urged the LNC to make no decision until the judge made his decision. The LNC, says the ALP, didn’t wait. LPUS affiliated one group; the judge gave state recognition to the other group.

    3) What about the disaffiliation process? ALP members note that the LPUS Bylaws provide that affiliation can only be removed “for cause”. “for cause” is not an idle phrase; it means that the group being disaffiliated must have done something wrong, and must be given reasonable due process to defend themselves against accusations. The ALP group denies that a “cause” was ever specified to them. They were therefore unable to defend themselves against implicit accusations that they had created a cause.

    4) Why was there a Casa Grande mediation? [This was representatives of the two groups meeting with an LNC representative, at a point midway between Phoenix and Tucson.] The position I am given from the ALP side is that the ALP was asked to indicate people who would be unacceptable as mediators, and was then informed that mediation was occurring. The ALP—say most ALP activists—did not ask the LNC for mediation. They were, however, prepared to be civil to people visiting the state. So far as I can determine, there is a substantial ALP group saying that it should not pursue affiliation ever again, and another group willing to try to repair relations between the ALP and the LNC.

    5) What happened at Casa Grande? While some ALP members say they were sworn to secrecy, others say that the mediator—our National Chair—only wanted to discuss ballot access for the Presidential candidate, and did not appear to be interested in the other issues separating the two groups. I am repeatedly told that at this meeting both sides repeated their public positions without significant variation. So far as I can determine, the perception from the meeting is that each group wanted the other to dissolve and assume a completely subservient position in the other.

    6) What are the underlying fundamental issues? To my ear, the disagreements I heard from the Arizona people go back to our Party Platform. To what extent can a State regulate the structure of a political party? To what extent should Libertarian candidates for office accept matching funds or other taxpayer subsidies of their campaigns? These are substantial issues. The ALP maintains that political parties are basically private groups, and condemns accepting money from the government for political purposes.

    7) What is the contest about? Could the two groups live and let live? There are issues that are difficult, and issues that are impossible. Impossible to compromise: Only one group can control appointment of Presidential electors and the name on the ballot. Only one group can receive the lists of registered voters from the state.

    Below the Presidential level, candidates are determined by primary, based on petitioning for ballot access. Thus, both groups could run candidates in the Libertarian primary by petitioning. They did it in 1998. Candidates either do or do not take matching funds. That’s an individual decision, candidate by candidate, not a Party decision. So far as I can determine, nothing in State Law precludes a situation in which some candidates accept matching funds, while other candidates reject them. Some people in Arizona will not like this situation, and will not endorse candidates if they take matching funds, but non-endorsement is not an insuperable obstacle. On the other hand, Arizona has an active referendum system. The groups differ on several issues, so if both groups were active the party would not speak with one voice.

    8) Is there energy wasted in lawsuits? The ALP members flatly maintain they have never sued the ALPI. They claim that they have been sued by the ALPI, and have always won. The ALP or its members have, however, sued the state of Arizona with some frequency about state ballot laws.

    Having said this, various ALP members noted two complications that might lead people to think they had sued the other group: [If you don't like legal fine print, skip ahead]

    (a) A suit against the state by the ALP had a significant effect on the other group and one of our Presidential candidates. An Arizona legal process then gave the other group and the candidate entrance into the suit, because the topics being adjudicated could affect the other group and the candidate substantially.

    (b) A county official, to perform her legal duties, needed a legal ruling as to which group was the Libertarian Party recognized by Arizona. The official sued, so the courts would tell her what to do. Meanwhile, the ALP with the support of the Democratic and Republican parties was suing the state, over issues that affected every political party in the state. The judicial system merged the two cases, leaving opponents of the law on one side, and supporters on the other. The two Arizona groups were now in the same suit on opposite sides, but that was the judge carrying out Arizona legal procedure. The contest was over the constitutionality of a state law; the two groups were not suing each other. The two state government groups involved then bowed out, leaving our two Arizona groups as active litigators. By standard legal policy, the side opposing the law was termed the “plaintiff”, that being the ALP, the other side being the “defendant”, that being the Tucson group, but the suit was over the law not against the other side.

    9) What does the ALP want at this point? The message I think they heard is that they want to be left alone to do activism. They view their methods as being more guerrilla or theatrical than the methods used by other parties. For example, on one occasion they raffled off an AK47 as the fundraiser. However, the ALP has accepted the LNC’s decision that they are cast out from the Libertarian Party. They will therefore run the Presidential candidate that they like and can support, and expect our affiliate to do the same.

    From the people I have listened to, accusations against the ALP of vindictiveness or spite do not sound to be generally correct. The ALP people view ‘You get to live with your decisions’ as being fundamental to a working Libertarian society. People who complain about the consequence of their decision, namely that it is somehow the fault of the Phoenix group that the LNC has the wrong affiliate, after they urged the LNC not to strip their ballot status, are viewed as showing their lack of belief in Libertarian Principles. The ALP is very strong on our being the Party of Principle.”

    That’s what I learned at the time, in Summer 2000.

    In 2000, the Phoenix group did vote that if the LNC restored its affiliation that their governing body was required to put the National Party’s Presidential candidate on the Arizona ballot. At the 2000 National Convention, the National Committee proposed an agreement between the two Arizona groups and National. The Phoenix group asked for an explanation of certain language, or so I was told, and then signed the original form of the document. The Tucson group declined to sign the unamended document, and instead signed a document that they had amended.

    The Phoenix group then invited Harry Browne to come to Arizona and explain why he should be the Arizona LP’s candidate, even though the Phoenix group was no longer part of the Party that had nominated Browne. Browne did not accept the invitation. With Browne absent, the Phoenix group as the legally- recognized Arizona Libertarian Party would put the best available Libertarian candidate on the ballot. In the end, the Arizona State Party chose to run L. Neil Smith as their 2000 candidate for President.

    The National Party petitioned to put Harry Browne on the state ballot as an independent. The 2000 report of the LPUS Political Director describes these efforts to petition for Harry Browne in Arizona after the National Convention. The National Party eventually spent more than $63,000 on petitioning and legal efforts. The petitioning, done after the legal deadline, collected enough signatures and led to a lawsuit which at latest report is still being litigated.

    Writing of support from the Tucson group, the LPUS Political Director said in his annual report “The onsite management from Peter Schmerl and Alexis Thompson did not materialize. Schmerl took almost two weeks to come up with the slate of independent electors and to draft the petition….When I arrived we had less than 3,000 signatures…I managed to organize the collection of some 19,000 signatures in 8 days.”

    At the time of this writing, in late 2001, the Tucson group is running a State Party, and the Phoenix group is working on alternatives, notably local elections and guerrilla theater leafletting attacking the Homeland Security Office, with leaflets being distributed in airports.

    Appendix

    The Non-Initiation Oath

    A significant part of the Arizona debate has referred back to the non-initiation of force Oath, which the National Party and some, but not all, state parties require of their members. The Oath, which dates back to the founding days of the Libertarian Party, is an agreement that Party members will not support the initiation of force to resolve social or political issues.

    The difficulty is that there is a lack of unanimity, to put it mildly, as to what this statement means. During my last National Chair campaign, I listened to many Libertarians as they explained their interpretation of the Oath to me.

    The author of the statement is the Party’s Founder, David Nolan. Nolan has repeatedly said publicly that the oath is an agreement that we are a political party, and we are out to attain change through the peaceful use of orthodox political processes. No more grandiose interpretation was intended. In understanding the oath, one was supposed to recall the context of the times in which they were written. In 1972, left-wing anti-war activists were planting bombs, several each day, in government offices and other places across the United States. The Capitol Building itself was repeatedly attacked. The intent of the oath was to make clear that the Libertarian Party was not associated with the radical left revolutionaries of that period.

    Within the Libertarian Party, one readily encounters a second interpretation of the Oath, namely that the Oath requires one to oppose any political action that could be termed ‘initiation of force’, with this phrase being very broadly interpreted. In particular, after an extensive exegesis, ‘opposition to initiation of force’ is taken to require one to oppose taxation and the products of taxation. Indeed, some Party members who support this interpretation claim that one can logically derive all moral conclusions from the non-initiation principle, a matter discussed in the Appendix to the Appendix.

    A significant complication is that phrases very much like those in the Oath are attributed to the writings of Ayn Rand, where precisely these interpretations are invoked. Rand—a mid-twentieth century author and philosopher —was an active opponent of the Libertarian Party who condemned involvement in the Libertarian Party by her followers. It is my understanding that Nolan maintains he was not thinking of her words when he wrote the Oath, and therefore that her phrasings do not inform the meaning of the Oath that he wrote.

    Within the Libertarian Party one also encounters many Libertarians who take an third interpretation of the Oath, an interpretation that precisely contradicts the second interpretation. In the third interpretation, it remains the specific duty of government to prevent the initiation of force, and therefore Libertarians mandatorily must support collection of taxes to maintain a justice system, a constabulary, and a military. If the second interpretation borders on support for anarchism, the third interpretation holds that anarchism is fundamentally incompatible with Libertarian beliefs. It is my impression that the three sides are similar in level of support within the LP, but not equally bellicose in expressing their faiths.

    Under unfavorable circumstances, discussions between Libertarians who believe these interpretations can consume all the time of a Libertarian group, leaving absolutely no time for political activity. The National Party faced up to this question once. At an early National Convention delegates subscribed to the ‘Dallas Accords’, which in essence said that: We are so far from needing to settle the question that we shouldn’t argue about it. Partisans of the two sides agree not to use their statements to shut the other side out of the Party.

    APPENDIX TO THE APPENDIX

    The Axiom of Choice and Goedel’s Incompleteness Theorem

    It is almost certainly the case that you should skip this section. It had little to do with the rest of the book.

    However, once upon a time I almost tried to become a professional mathematician. There is a specific issue that I find sufficiently annoying that I am going to discuss it here. You really want to turn ahead to the next chapter now.

    In short, one occasionally encounters assertions from some libertarians that all moral decisions can be ‘logically derived from the non-initiation principle’. My thesis here is that the phrase ‘logically derived’ as invoked in the previous sentence is a process of religious faith whose properties are fundamentally antilogical: They are indubitably logically inconsistent with the process ‘logically derived’ that most readers encountered in plane geometry.

    Skip to the next chapter. This is your last warning.

    I am going to omit almost all mathematical details, so what I have to say reduced to four paragraphs.

    First, we have the ‘Axiom of Choice’. What does the Axiom of Choice say? Suppose I form a collection of objects, all of which have some property. For example, I could make a list of all human women. According to the Axiom of Choice, I can then choose a representative person from that list, and we have agreement that ‘this person is a woman’. Now, given several interesting medical issues involving unusual chromosomal sorting, genetic defects, and the wonders of modern gender alteration surgery, there can be a range of opinions as to who belongs on that list. Sometimes one realizes that the definition of the list is incomplete or unambiguous. That doesn’t matter; definitions are in the end arbitrary. There is no claim that I can identify every single person on the list. The Axiom of Choice only claims that, for any list chosen to include all objects with a particular property, I can choose a representative object, which is prominent in no way except that it is an example of the objects on the list. Thus, I can choose a representative woman, who with respect to her membership on the list is distinguished only by being a human female. There is no implication that the object is typical in any sense. I may choose an average woman. I may choose the richest woman in the world. However, when discussing her, I am allowed only to refer to her as being female, not to her as being average or well-to-do. Similarly, when I choose a representative triangle, that triangle might or might not be a right triangle, but nothing in the proof can take advantage of the triangle’s being or not being a right triangle. The Axiom of Choice, once you understand it, sounds fairly obvious, except that it also applies to lists that have an infinite number of members.

    Second, the Axiom of Choice is the basis of modern mathematical proofs. Modern proofs do not resemble the proofs that most readers saw in plane geometry. Modern proofs work by examining counterexamples. I give a simple case. Suppose we have a theorem ‘the sum of the internal angles of a triangle is 180 degrees’. A counterexample disproves the theorem. If I can show you a single triangle whose internal angles do not add to 180 degrees, I have disproven the theorem as stated. How in modern mathematics do I prove the theorem? I announce ‘consider a triangle whose angles do not add to 180 degrees’. I just invoked the Axiom of Choice. I selected a representative triangle with these particular properties and no others. Now I examine other properties of this odd triangle, and derive a contradiction, for example that the alleged triangle must have at least four corners. That’s a contradiction; by definition triangles only have three corners. Therefore, I have shown that any triangle that is a counterexample to the theorem ‘the sum of the internal angles of a triangle is 180 degrees’, is self-contradictory. It therefore does not exist. Ergo, all triangles must obey the theorem. Note that I have just proven the theorem without showing for even one triangle that the sum of the internal angles is 180 degrees.

    Third, until early in the last century the objective of mathematics was to reduce all results to logical derivations from a few axioms. Along came the German mathematician Kurt Goedel. Goedel proved, using the Axiom of Choice, that except in trivially simple logical systems you cannot produce a simple set of axioms that describe all mathematical results. That is, in any complicated mathematical system there are an infinite number of statements that are true, but that cannot be derived from any simple set of axioms using orthodox logic.* Alternatively, Goedel showed that excepting truly trivial logical systems all complete logical systems have an infinite number of independent axioms.

    Fourth, we now return to the statement that all moral decisions can be logically derived from the non-initiation principle, which may be phrased as an axiom: ‘any act that violates the non-initiation principle is immoral’. Any moral question may be phrased as a theorem ‘this action does not have the property immoral.’ Morality is not mathematically trivial. Ergo, from the Axiom of Choice and the Goedel Incompleteness Theorem there are actions that are moral or that are immoral that cannot be logically proven to be moral or immoral from any short set of axioms. Claims that one can logically derive all moral conclusions from the Non-Initiation Principle are claims that an entire nontrivial logical system can be derived from a single axiom. Such claims are mathematically incompatible with the properties of mathematical logic, and must be recognized as non-logical statements of faith.

    FOOTNOTE TO THE APPENDIX TO THE APPENDIX

    *The Axiom of Choice could be in error. There are several truly remarkable mathematical results that do not look entirely reasonable that have been derived using the axiom. There is an alternative to the axiom that I have seen given several names, e.g., constructivism, which holds that proof by showing the falsity of counterexamples is invalid. Valid proofs must advance by positive calculation. For example, suppose you want to claim that you can take a sphere, cut it into five parts, and reassemble your five pieces into two new spheres, each, by the way, having the same volume as the initial sphere. To do so via constructivism you must specify the cuts. [No, that is not an arbitrary example; it is a very important example.] With the Axiom of Choice you can prove that you can slice a sphere into five parts and reassemble them into two spheres, each having the volume of the original sphere.

    See, I told you that you should skip to the next chapter.

    Forward to Chapter 18

  214. Be Rational

    “Morality is not mathematically trivial.”

    Reliance on this unproven assertion is a fatal flaw in your attempt to establish a logical sequence.

  215. Alaska Constitution Party

    This site is becoming harder and harder to tolerate with all the nastiness. It would be best to keep discussions to policy, strategy and philosophy rather than ad hominum attacks, which are tedious and detract from civil discourse. Though it is sometimes difficult not to respond to barbs and attacks, it is best to ignore them.

  216. Steve Rhodes

    I agree with 349. No one is going to post comments anymore if their opinions are attacked and ridiculed. It’s time to chill, and not respond to those who continue to argue in such negative ways.

  217. Andy

    “Brian Holtz // May 31, 2013 at 11:31 pm

    Yep – direct hit on my funny bone.”

    Ahhh, this is quite predictable. Holtz chimes in with the red herring issue of why the Bush regime did not plant WMD’s in Iraq, as if this somehow means that false flags are a myth, or that 9/11 was not a false flag. This is a typical tactic from neo-cons, and phony “libertarians,” like one that I ran into at the recently held Freedom Fest who thought he could “get one over one me” when he overheard a conversation I was having (on an unrelated topic) with somebody else where the Alex Jones Show came up briefly in discussion. This fool – who said that they liked Michele Bachmann and thought that Michele Bachmann and Ron Paul were close on the issues – thought that he could “get one over one me” by bringing up the “Why didn’t the Bush administration plant WMD’s in Iraq?” argument as a way to discredit me. My response was that the likely reason was because too many people were expecting this to happen, so it increased the likelihood of them getting caught, plus, the neo-cons had already gotten what they wanted, and they already had other propaganda to rely on for the invasion, so there was no need to risk getting caught planting WMD’s in Iraq. I then turned the tables on this fool by asking them questions, and they ended up not responding and running away, kind of like Holtz and some other so called “Libertarians” who are “keepers of the official government propaganda about 9/11″ did when I tried to get them to agree to having a debate at an LP convention on the subject of 9/11 which would be on video and put online live, and then posted to YouTube. I’ve put on this challenge since 2007 and never had anyone accept it. Holtz then tried to “turn the table” on me in a COINTELPRO like manner by trying to bait me into agreeing to a live debate at an LP convention where he wanted me to say who I thought was a plant in the LP, which was an obvious red herring meant to create infighting and to discredit me since I had already said multiple times that talk of plants in the LP was basically SPECULATION. I prefer to debate facts, not speculation.

Leave a Reply