Stanhope back in Libertarian race?

As I was doing my daily search of web sites I stumbled across this article (dated 04/05/07) on Doug Craig’s web site.

I was under the belief that Stanhope had dropped out of the Libertarian race… if he is indeed going to enter and be a serious contended that’s certainly good news for the Libertarian Party in its quest to be noticed.

Thursday, April 5, 2007

By BRAD BURKE
of the Journal Star

Doug Stanhope has been angry about the state of our country for decades. The comedian loves to rail against phony politicians, brain dead media outlets and basically anyone and everyone who tries to tell him his business.

“I’ve been yelling about this stuff for so long and nothing changes,” Stanhope, now 40 and living in Arizona, said by phone Monday. “... For 22 years I’ve been voting age and I’ve never had anyone inspiring to vote for.”

His solution?

“So (expletive) it,” he said, “I’ll do it myself.”

Stanhope wants to be your next president. Yes, that Doug Stanhope, the relentlessly cynical, unapologetically profane comic. He says he’s days away from announcing his candidacy for the Libertarian Party’s nomination in 2008.

And for once, the longtime stand-up isn’t joking.

“Nobody who’s seen my act thinks it’s a joke,” he said, “because anyone who’s seen what I do on stage knows I’m very serious and passionate about the things I talk about. ... Just because it’s funny doesn’t mean it’s not deadly serious.”

That makes Stanhope’s gigs at Jukebox Comedy Club this weekend (for times, see Comedy Spotlight on Page C2) unofficial stops on the campaign trail.

In a way, he’s already been stumping for years. Stanhope is known to rant on stage about politics and social issues, making him one of the most thought-provoking comics around. He’s controversial, sure, but he’s also intelligent, charismatic and honest to a fault.

Which, of course, makes him totally unqualified for American politics.

“I’d rather have the stigma of being not so serious than the stigma of being a (expletive) liar,” he said wryly, referring to the candidates in the two dominant parties.

But can a “not so serious” entrant win the nomination? And would the Libertarian Party even want him to?

To find out, I phoned Valiant Vetter, state chair of the Libertarian Party of Illinois, to ask what the party was looking for in prospective candidates.

The good news: Vetter said he wants a Libertarian who believes in “smaller government, individual responsibility

and personal freedom.” Check, check and check. Stanhope wants to end the war in Iraq, repeal the Patriot Act and reduce government regulation.

The bad news: Vetter also would like a “credible” candidate with political experience. And vulgarity is a no-no, he said.

Riiiiight. Here’s where Stanhope’s chances shrink from Olive Oyl slim to dust-in-the-wind nonexistent. The comedian doesn’t merely have skeletons in his closet. He has mass graves.

Dick Cheney raised eyebrows by uttering the F-word. In Stanhope’s case, you’d be hard-pressed to find footage of him that doesn’t include an F-bomb. And if you thought it was bad when George Bush’s daughter got busted drinking, consider this: Stanhope once hosted a “Girls Gone Wild” video.

Suddenly, that stained blue dress doesn’t seem so tawdry.

“There are going to be some old-school Libertarians that don’t like my credentials,” Stanhope said with a chuckle. “You know, you throw the errant ‘Girls Gone Wild’ in there and it might stink of something duplicitous.”

OK, so we’re not likely to swear in President Stanhope next year. But the comedian’s candidacy doesn’t reek of a joke (like Randy of the Redwoods mugging for MTV in ‘88) or a publicity stunt (as in the rush of D-list celebs who ran in California’s 2003 recall).

Rather, Stanhope is genuinely fed up with the U.S. of A. And he says he’s in it to win it.

“I can win the Libertarian nomination, no problem,” he said. “After that, it’s a matter of really just putting our nose to the grindstone and seeing how much of this idealism we can get into the national consciousness.”

He pauses. “And keep it fun so I don’t put a gun to my head, because politics are really dreadfully boring.”

Trust me, a presidential race with Doug Stanhope on the ballot will be many things. Boring isn’t one of them.

Brad Burke is the Journal Star’s entertainment editor. He can be reached at (309) 686-3262, by e-mail at [email protected] or at 1 News Plaza, Peoria, IL 61643.

66 Responses to “Stanhope back in Libertarian race?”

  1. globalist_elitist Says:

    He never dropped out. He just said he “announced too early.”

  2. Austin Cassidy Says:

    “I can win the Libertarian nomination, no problem,” he said.

    Ehhhhhh…. don’t be so sure of that.

  3. Trent Hill Says:

    I’m with Austin on this one - Don’t be so sure.

  4. Eric Dondero Says:

    Stanhope just finished a European tour. I watched the press he received over there closely. In both an Irish and a Scottish newspaper he said quite clearly that he intends to run for the Libertarian Party Presidential nomination.

    If he jumps in, he’ll instantly be the frontrunner for the LP Nomination. Geoege Phillies’ campaigns seems to have dissappeared. Steve Kubby has major problems: an ongoing controversy with a former Campaign Manager and yet another controversy about whether his Parole status allows him to campaign in 38 states where Medical Marijuana is not legal.

    As much as I’d like to see Wayne Root run, he’s been hesitating for some time.

    This Michael Jingozian guy hasn’t seemed to catch on. He seems limited to just an Oregon phenomena.

    This leaves Stanhope home free. I just hope he gets a good campaign team around him.

  5. NewFederalist Says:

    A profane and angry comedian for president… why the f**k not! You got a problem with that, [email protected]@hole? (Sheesh, can it possibly get any worse?)

  6. Austin Cassidy Says:

    Libertarians have some history of not nominating the frontrunner…

  7. globalist_elitist Says:

    I want to hear that Stanhope is willing to make a real financial commitment to the race. He could easily mobilize the best fundraising apparatus in the history of the party via the internet. Best of all, he might drive some of the right-wing LPers out of the party. What is Bob Barr going to say about Stanhope? Or for that matter, Kubby? Even Phillies?

    Hmm… I’ve never thought about it from that perspective. Perhaps Barr is planning a coup d’etat nomination run himself. I can’t see him endorsing any of the announced candidates.

  8. Austin Cassidy Says:

    Either Ron Paul or Bob Barr could shut down a Stanhope campaign in a minute, I would suspect. Although Paul would probably be the better candidate.

    It would also be neat to see Paul run as a Libertarian simply because he’d probably switch his registration from R to L and so the LP would finally have an official seat in the House…... at least for a few months.

  9. Joey Dauben Says:

    I have re-joined the LP. And joined the CP. I might make it a trifecta and join the Communist Party.

    (serious about the first two; sarcasm on the last)

    Where’s Gary Nolan? I really wanted HIM to run again.

    But Ron Paul is my man hands-down before anyone….

  10. Bill Wood Says:

    Joey, I’m with you about Gary Noland. Where the heck is he. His Campaign website is still on the web, but no updates. Somebody give him a call.

  11. Trent Hill Says:

    Paul is EVERYONES frontrunner.

    As for Stanhope winning the nomination. No way. Self-respecting libertarians will not nominate a guy who has that much BAD media, and NO credentials (at least Kubby is a proven activist,and medical marijuana user. Phillies is a professor!)

    He’s a joke. And a bad one,like his show.

  12. Selznak Says:

    I certainly hope he doesn’t win the nomination. The LP can do better than this. But, as Mr. Cassidy has pointed out, the LP doesn’t exactly have the best track record when it comes to choosing a candidate.

  13. Jackcjackson Says:

    Ron Paul isn’t a Libertarian candidate. So I dont even see the point in bringing him up when discussing LP candidates. While it may not be a good one, the LP will have a candidate on most general election ballots. However, Ron Paul’s name will not appear anywhere.

    I dont know why anyone though Stanhope dropped out though. He’s been about as visible as anyone else at this point.

  14. globalist_elitist Says:

    “Paul is EVERYONES frontrunner.”

    Not mine.

    I like Stanhope best because he has the potential to transform the party. The really open the minds of young people. You think Dr. Ron is going to do that? No way. He just perpetuates the idea that “Libertarians” are really just a kooky fringe of the GOP’s right wing.

  15. Eric Dondero Says:

    If Ron Paul were to run as a Libertarian, the people here in South Texas would be seriously pissed off at him. He spent years trying to convince his constituent that he really was a “Conservative” Republican and was “through” with the Libertarian stuff. He’d be a literal outcast in his hometown of Lake Jackson. I don’t think he’s willing to risk that. He’s got way too many friends, and longtime business associates in LJ who are diehard Republicans, and would disown him if he went to the LP.

  16. Eric Dondero Says:

    Austin, the LP does not have a history of “not nominating the frontrunner.” That was limited to 2004. That was a fluke. In fact, in just about every other LP President cycle the LP has always chosen the frontrunner: Ed Clark, Ron Paul, Andre Marrou, Harry Browne.

    Oops, I’m mistaken, slightly. You’re right on 1984. David Bergland won the nomination, but only at the last minuted cause frontrunner Gene Burns dropped out.

  17. Eric Dondero Says:

    Doug Stanhope could be the best Libertarian Presidential candidate since Ed Clark. I remember Stanhope from Spike TV’s “Man Show.” I had no idea, until recently that he was a Libertarian.

    Millions of American men watched the “Man’s Show” and will no doubt remember him from that.

    Stanhope will have great appeal to your college-aged men, and men in their 20s and 30s.

    That, after all, is the Libertarian Party’s natural constituency.

    And if the GOP nominates a boring-ass McCain, or a social conservative like Mitt Romney or Mike Huckabee over a more libertarian-leaning candidate like Giuliani or Fred Thompson, you could see a Stanhope candidacy galvanize millions of younger male voters.

    I’d predict Stanhope could get as much as 3 to 5 million votes. That’s if, again, he has a professional and serious campaign team around him, and he doesn’t just do it, for laughs.

  18. Jay Matthews Says:

    Eric,

    In regards to the first of your three posts above, let’s assume for a moment your position is true and I have no doubt you’re right, some people there would be annoyed. That typifies the problem with the way people vote: based on party affiliation rather than platform.

    “Disown him?” Maybe some would and it would be completely ignorant.

    If we can agree being a Libertarian means one believes in returning gov’t to its constitutonal limits nothing is inherently more conservative than that as the constitution is a conservative document granting gov’t limited functions and power.

    “Conservative Republican” VS. “Libertarian”........really what’s the difference. It’s splitting hairs and playing word games.

  19. George Phillies Says:

    Frontrunner?

    Eric,

    I was on Russo’s inner campaign staff in 2004, up until the nomination. I really don’t think we knew who was the leader going into the nomination—it appeared to me to be fairly even. The Nolan/Badnarik difference required a change of 7 votes, at which point Badnarik would have finished third and Nolan and Russo would have had it out in the final. Therefore, I think your statement ‘the frontrunner wins’ is really consistently true, more so than you make it out to be.

    Happy to come to your support on this question.

    Readers interested in more history may note Brian Doherty’s book “Radicals for Capitalism”, though he is really very light on Libertarian Party as opposed to libertarian philosopher history. It was interesting how many bad events can be traced to the same person, but I will let you all read it for yourself.

    George

  20. matt Says:

    Jay,
    As I understand it, Libertarianism isn’t so much about returning government to within it’s constitutional limits as it is about returning it to within it’s moral limits. The Constitution was just a compromise between proto-libertarians and colonial oligarchs.

  21. Carl Says:

    A Doug Stanhope presidency would solidify the LP’s position as a protest organization instead of as a political party.

    That might be a good thing. The LP is not set up as a political party and attempts to change it into one have met such resistance that perhaps turning it into one is a mistake. Perhaps it would be better to go in the other direction sufficiently that it can no longer divert the efforts of those who want to elect freedom-lovers to public office.

    Go Doug! You suck!

  22. Trevor Southerland Says:

    Well, I hope that Stanhope enters/stays in the Libertarian race to make it interesting. If the LP chooses to take advantage it may have a good year in 2008… but I certainly hope that Stanhope or someone else steps up to take the party’s nomination… the current crop of “campaigning candidates” is weak.

    Personally, I’m volunteering for the Barack Obama campaign, but wish the best of luck to whomever will be on the Libertarian ballot line in 2008.

  23. matt Says:

    Don’t get me wrong, things would be 100 times better if the Constitution were actually followed and enforced, so that’s a good goal for now. For all that, though, in the back of my mind I keep wishing we could go back and get a better deal.

    Doug Stanhope, you are totally unqualified to be president. At least Badnarik knew the Constitution.

  24. globalist_elitist Says:

    If you don’t know the difference between conservatism and libertarianism, you’re an idiot. Read F.A. Hayek’s “Why I’m Not A Conservative.”

  25. Jay Matthews Says:

    The LP is in large part what the GOP used to be a LONG time ago. Would most here agree? If you do agree how could one not consider the LP conservative? At the very least the LP is fiscally conservative. This makes Ron Paul a Libertarian / old-school Republican. (Hence his crossover appeal.)

    I’m a little surprised there isn’t a little more of a “push” for Ed Thompson to be the LP’s candidate. No offense to Mr. Phillies but compared to the current names being thrown around I think he’s a decent choice. Again, this is by way of comparision.

  26. Trent Hill Says:

    Trevor,

    You want the LP to do good…but are volunteering for OBAMA?
    You realize he’s a socialist right?

  27. globalist_elitist Says:

    Obama is a theocratic socialist at that.

    He’s much closer to the CP than the LP on the two most important issues facing the future prosperity of the nation: Trade and church-state separation. In fact, I’m surprised the CP isn’t endorsing him.

    I will agree that the LP is “conservative,” but “libertarianism” is not conservative at all. This is a problem with the LP. Furthermore, the LP is not “fiscally conservative,” it is economically regressive. Are these just semantic differences? No. They are important.

    I want the LP to be the party of pro-growth liberalism (which embodies “fiscal conservatism”), not right-wing regressivism. It markets itself as the former when in reality it is the latter.

    I still recommend you read F.A. Hayek’s “Why I’m Not A Conservative.” The idiocy of the right becomes all the more clear when you learn that Reagan became a conservative after reading Hayek - who was NOT a conservative and in fact hated conservatism. When Conservative Party leader Margaret Thatcher took power, she held up Hayek’s “Constitution of Liberty” and screamed “this is what we believe” - despite the fact that it contained the essay, “Why I’m Not a Conservative.”

  28. Trevor Southerland Says:

    “You want the LP to do good…but are volunteering for OBAMA?
    You realize he’s a socialist right?”

    Trent,

    I want the LP to do good because I still have friends in the Libertarian Party and because it is a part of the freedom movement that I believe in.

    I’m volunteering for Senator Obama because I am going to be working with the Democratic Party in the future, because I believe Senator Obama to be a better choice than Senator Clinton, and because my main priority for the 2008 election cycle is electing a President that will end our involvement in Iraq.

    I’ve been active in the Libertarian Party for around ten years now… most Libertarians are very good people, but I also found out last year that some Libertarians are (to use a line from my favorite TV show Scrubs) “bastard coated bastards with bastard filling”... so my view of the LP as being “above the fray” has now diminished.

    I realize that the LP is just a political party, of which you can work to advance freedom, but which is not totally free of people who are “bastard coated bastards with bastard filling.” Thus, the Democrat and Republican Parties are just political parties, which you can also work to advance freedom, but which also have their fair share of bums. I’ve chosen to use the framework of the Democratic Party to personally work to advance freedom.

    I’m willing to do my part to advance freedom and to return our troops home as soon as possible… and the best way to do that right now is to volunteer and support Senator Barack Obama to become the next President of these United States.

  29. matt Says:

    Trevor,
    With all due respect, various people’s status as bastards notwithstanding, I have a hard time seeing how supporting Obama will do much for the cause of freedom.

    Ron Paul has signed a pledge promising that, if elected, he will return the power that has been usurped by the executive branch since 9/11. The pledge is specific. Barack Obama has made no such pledge, and tends to spout purple prose about ‘values’ and ‘freedom’ rather than talk about specific changes he would make to restore the rule of law.

    Your Obama won’t stop the war. If, by some freak accident, he does, he’ll probably start another, since he seems to be fairly in line with the neocon line on foreign policy. Your Obama will cripple the economy with protectionism and possibly even some ridiculous health care reform that we can’t afford. Your Obama is a joke.

    http://www.prnewswire.com/cgi-bin/stories.pl?ACCT=104&STORY=/www/story/03-21-2007/0004550530&EDATE

  30. Eric Dondero Says:

    Burack HUSSEIN Obama is not just Socialist but rather National Socialist as in Nazi. The guy spent 4 years in an Islamic Madrassa as a child. He only recently converted from Islam to Christianity, more as a political ploy many suspect.

    Hussein Obama wants to hand our country over to the Islamo-Fascists. He wants to open the door for more Terrorists to invade America.

    He has a perfect 100 score from the Marxist ADA. He also has perfect 100 scores from the Federal Government Worker’s Union and the NEA.

    A colleauge of his in the Illinois Senate said of Obama, “he had a voting record to the Left of Mao Tse Tung.”

    If you work for Hussein Obama you’re good as working for the American Nazi and Communist Partys all wrapped up in one.

  31. Jay Matthews Says:

    Trevor, just a thought. If you believe Obama will “advance freedom” ask yourself what has he done to advance freedom as a senator. How about when he was a state senator? What is his voting record like? Does he vote to defend civil liberties on a consistent basis? I believe he voted for the patriot act. That advances a police state.

  32. globalist_elitist Says:

    Dondero, you are a true racist. You undermine the case against Obama with your hate-filled screed.

  33. globalist_elitist Says:

    And Obama did not vote for the Patriot Act, nor does he support it. He wasn’t even in the Senate when it was passed, you idiot.

    Obama is a theocratic anti-capitialist. He is a Christian theonomist. That is bad enough. You don’t have to invest bogus shit to make him look worse. Then again, for those who support protectionism and theonomy, I guess you have to find a reason other than his blackness to oppose him.

  34. Jake Porter Says:

    I believe Obama did vote for the reauthoriazation of the Patriot Act.

  35. matt Says:

    As I remember, he gave a stirring speech on the senate floor about how he was concerned about some of the wording in PATRIOT II

    ...and then voted for it anyway so that he couldn’t be attacked from the right.

    He’s the slipperiest politician on the scene since Bill Clinton, and has even less regard for human rights.

  36. Andy Says:

    “Trent Hill Says:

    April 6th, 2007 at 1:03 am
    Paul is EVERYONES frontrunner.”

    Ron Paul is the frontrunner for everyone who is SERIOUS about cutting the size of government. Unfortunately, this is not a large group when compared to the population as a whole.

    “As for Stanhope winning the nomination. No way. Self-respecting libertarians will not nominate a guy who has that much BAD media, and NO credentials (at least Kubby is a proven activist,and medical marijuana user. Phillies is a professor!)

    He’s a joke. And a bad one,like his show.”

    I like Doug Stanhope from what I’ve seen from him so far. I look forward to him officially entering the race.

  37. Andy Says:

    “Eric Dondero Says:

    April 6th, 2007 at 9:20 am
    Doug Stanhope could be the best Libertarian Presidential candidate since Ed Clark. I remember Stanhope from Spike TV’s “Man Show.” I had no idea, until recently that he was a Libertarian.

    Millions of American men watched the “Man’s Show” and will no doubt remember him from that.

    Stanhope will have great appeal to your college-aged men, and men in their 20s and 30s.

    That, after all, is the Libertarian Party’s natural constituency.”

    You are aware of the fact that Doug Stanhope has got some major differences with you, right? Doug is opposed to the war in Iraq and the phony “War on Terror” in general and he favors bringing the troops home and repealing all of the police state legislation that was passed because of this bogus “War on Terror.” Doug is also open to having a real investigation of 9/11.

  38. Joseph Says:

    The race NEEDS some new blood. Now that Kubby has proved that he doesn’t have what it takes, it’s down to Phillies and Smith.

  39. undercover_anarchist Says:

    Smith??? Are you kidding me?

  40. Jay Matthews Says:

    “And Obama did not vote for the Patriot Act, nor does he support it. He wasn’t even in the Senate when it was passed, you idiot.”

    You’re a tool straight out of Home Depot.

    Obama DID vote for the Patriot Act. He does support it. Of course I’m referring to his ‘06 vote. I didn’t think that needed to be stated. I gave Trevor enough credit to know this. Apology accepted.

  41. Trevor Southerland Says:

    Congressman Paul has no shot, read my lips, no shot of winning the Republican nomination to be President. He would have made more publicity if he would have left the GOP and announced as a Libertarian for President… but whatever, best of luck to him.

    I also realize that Senator Obama has made some bad votes in the past but he has two things going for him… one - he’s better than Hillary and two - he has a shot to win the Democratic nomination. As I’ve said before, my main concern is getting us out of Iraq… thus the GOP can not be allowed to win in 2008.

    As for the racist rant against Obama… yeah… all I have to say to that is… and we all wonder why the rest of the world hates us.

    I’ve come to the reality that on a national scale the Libertarian Party is not in a position to win, or even make that big of an impact… thus libertarians like me who truly want to work to reduce the size of government can best do so through the major parties and working with orgaizations like the Republican Liberty Caucus, the Democratic Freedom Caucus, the Blue Dog Democrats, etc… personally - I’m going to be working on the Democratic side while some libertarians may want to work on the GOP side.

  42. globalist_elitist Says:

    The Blue Dogs are the worst dogs of them all. They are for big government on one hand, trade obstruction and immigration restrictions on the other. Oh wait, is Obama a blue dog?

    Obama is not better than Hillary. Unless you consider the candidate who will do the most to destroy the economy and establish Christian theonomy as the best candidate.

    Obama is an idiot. He will have other idiots in his administration, if elected. If you want to look at this election from a truly pragmatic viewpoint, then you had better hope that Hillary wins the Democratic nomination, because Obama and Edwards would make Jimmy Carter seem fit for Mount Rushmore.

  43. Robert Milnes Says:

    Joseph, how did Kubby prove that he doesn’t have what it takes?

  44. [email protected] Says:

    Quoth Eric Dondero:

    “Steve Kubby has major problems: an ongoing controversy with a former Campaign Manager and yet another controversy about whether his Parole status allows him to campaign in 38 states where Medical Marijuana is not legal.”

    Neither of these claims bears any resemblance to reality.

    The “controversy with a former campaign manager” was a poorly-executed extortion attempt (“give me money or I’ll say bad things about Kubby”) which Mr. Dondero did his best to promote/aid with an episode of his Blog Talk Radio show. And that’s pretty much the only play it has received, because that’s really all there is to it.

    There’s no “controversy over Kubby’s parole status,” unless you consider the fact that Kubby is not, and never has been, on parole to be “controversial” (or maybe it’s “controversial” that he was once a parole officer?). Kubby is on probation, and under no legal constraint against campaigning in any state. He’s campaigned in four states so far (physically, not counting phone/video events—for example, we videoconferenced him in to Tennessee’s convention last weekend), and he’ll campaign in more in the future. We will probably not have him outside of California again unti the fall for various reasons, including money, but not including the medical marijuana status of states we may want him to visit.

    That said, I think that Stanhope will be a formidable candidate for the nomination if he runs—and I expect him to run. The Kubby campaign has had some communications with him, all of them friendly. If he does run, he hopes that his campaign will highlight not just him, but his opponents for the nomination, as a way of creating good public discussions of the issues. I’d rather he didn’t run, and I don’t think he should be nominated, but don’t underestimate him.

  45. [email protected] Says:

    Bob,

    Joseph is bitter that Kubby won’t be attending the New Mexico LP convention. I don’t blame him, as that was a convention I had committed Kubby to attending before we realized how truly pathetic fundraising was going to be.

    Naturally, I’ll keep trying to put together a reasonably good campaign—because, to be honest, there are no other even remotely plausible options among the currently declared candidates.

  46. globalist_elitist Says:

    If fundraising is so pathetic that Kubby can’t make his commitments, then yes, “he doesn’t have what it takes.” It takes money.

  47. [email protected] Says:

    globalist_elitist:

    You’re correct … it takes money.

    So far, I’ve not seen any indication that Libertarians are willing to invest significant amounts of money in ANY LP candidate[1] this election cycle—and in the LP or any other party, it’s the party faithful who provide the “seed money” from which a campaign is grown.

    It’s. Just. That. Simple.

    If you can come up with a way to get over that hump, I’d like to know about it.

    Looking back at past LP presidential candidates, I don’t see that Kubby is any less inspiring than any of them (although I’d say that his opponents are). There are other things going on here that are not dependent, or wholly dependent, on the candidates themselves.

    There’s the Badnarik debacle, of course.

    And there’s the fact that LPHQ has decided to cut off two of the fundraising tools previously used by most candidates for the nomination (direct mail to the member list and advertising in LP News).

    Although I’ve stated multiple times that I don’t think I’m the guy to manage a presidential campaign, I’m not going to take the entire hit for lack of money, and I’ll put my record up against anyone’s for spending the money I do have wisely [2].

    Libertarians either want a presidential campaign, or they don’t. Right now, they’re saying they don’t. I think that’s a bad call, and I hope they’ll change their minds, but yeah, you’re right—no money, no campaign.

    Tom Knapp

    [1] I also doubt that LP members are investing significant money in Ron Paul’s campaign for the nomination of the Party of Big Government, Torture, Foreign Wars of Aggression and General Anti-Americanism. If they are, they should be ashamed of themselves.

    [2] I’ve managed three victorious local campaigns (one for local office, two to defeat ballot initiatives) on budgets of less than $25 each. The 2004 VP candidate whose campaign I managed attended nine state conventions and the national convention, procured campaign buttons, printed campaign literature, etc., on a total budget of about $3K. In my own first run for office, I raised and spent $1500 in pursuit of the Springfield, Missouri city council seat that Doug Burlison won last week, and got 20% of the vote. The winner of that race (an incumbent filling out an unexpired term he had been appointed to) spent about $4500 for 47.5% of the vote. The third candidate spent about $15,000 (i.e. ten times what I did) for 32.5% of the vote.

    Believe me, I wish I had more money to work with on EVERY campaign—but I think I make good use of the money I DO have.

  48. globalist_elitist Says:

    No one is alleging otherwise. You don’t have an Allan Hacker Complex, do you?

  49. Robert Milnes Says:

    Tom, poor Joseph, he must be miserable that I’m not going to attend either. I thought it was just me-campaign contribution pain. At least with Liberty Decides ‘08 the lp is trying to get theirs up front. Millionaire repub. is odds on favorite with this situation. Unfortunately, if blogs are any indication, RP is getting a LOT of lib. support.

  50. George Phillies Says:

    Within 10 days, we will be able to find out how much money (at least in $200 chunks, depending on how the Ron Paul Treasurer sets a specific bit) many Libertarians are investing in Ron Paul. He did raise enough money that he must file. Then one just does a cross-search against other lists.

    The Ron Paul fundraiser in NH raised $14,000, and the state party friends says it tapped NH fairly close to dry. The Free State Project leadership, not to be confused with its membership, was vigorously Republican in its scheduling of opening and closing speakers and debate at their February Freedom Festival. They also have a stack of members who support Ron Paul’s position on, e..g, the Federal Reserve Bank.

  51. Andy Says:

    “[1] I also doubt that LP members are investing significant money in Ron Paul’s campaign for the nomination of the Party of Big Government, Torture, Foreign Wars of Aggression and General Anti-Americanism. If they are, they should be ashamed of themselves.”

    Why should any Libertarian Party members be “ashamed” for donating money to Ron Paul, considering that Ron Paul is against Big Government, Torture, Foreign Wars of Aggression and General Anti-Americanism? I know of some people in the party who have sent Ron Paul donations and I’d imagine that a lot of Libertarians that I don’t know about have sent him money. I haven’t sent Ron Paul anything yet, but I plan to send him a donation in the near future. Ron Paul has already recieved more publicity than all of the candidates seeking the LP nomination combined. I’m looking forward to seeing Ron up on a stage debating big government Republicans like Rudy Giuliani, John McCain, Mitt Romney, etc…

    You aren’t doing the Steve Kubby campaign any favors by making negative comments about Ron Paul supporters. I haven’t decided who I’m going to support for the LP nomination. I MIGHT end up supporting Kubby but at this point I’m undecided.

    I’d like to see Ron Paul make as big an impact as possible, but I realize that his chances of winning the Republican nomination are slim and I know that Ron has not expressed an interest in a minor party or independent run, so if (or when) Ron drops out of the race those of us who are supporting Ron Paul and who want a candidate who wants to reduce the size of government are still going to need a candidate. So I will likely support somebody for the Libertarian Party nomination, I just don’t know who that person is at this point in time.

    “They also have a stack of members who support Ron Paul’s position on, e..g, the Federal Reserve Bank.”

    So should we interpet this as meaning that you are in favor of the Federal Reserve System? I agree with Ron Paul (as well as Michael Badnarik, Aaron Russo, Gary Nolan, Harry Browne, Murray Rothbard, etc…), that the Federal Reserve should be abolished. I will not support any candidate who supports the Federal Reserve.

  52. [email protected] Says:

    global_elitist:

    No, I don’t have an “Allen Hacker Complex.” I’m more Discordian/Subgenius than Scientologist, I don’t play the “secret plan” game, and I don’t exaggerate my qualifications and expertise to convince people that I can elect a Libertarian to Congress (or any other office) in circumstances where I clearly cannot.

    Andy,

    You write:

    “Why should any Libertarian Party members be “ashamed” for donating money to Ron Paul, considering that Ron Paul is against Big Government, Torture, Foreign Wars of Aggression and General Anti-Americanism?”

    For the same reason that any Libertarian Party member should be ashamed to donate money to a candidate for the Nazi Party’s nomination just because that candidate says he is against herding all the Jews, homosexuals, and Jehovah’s Witnesses into gas chambers. Even if he’s against those things, his party is for them, and when you support a candidate you’re supporting that candidate’s party.

    The Republican Party is, and always has been, a party of big—and, when “necessary,” which it will always become, tyrannical—government. Supporting a “libertarian Republican” candidate for office may seem, as a surface impression, like a way of taking over the GOP and turning it into something it has never been … but that’s never going to happen. The real sum result of supporting “libertarian Republicans” is that doing so gives the GOP a propaganda tool that allows it to masquerade as something it’s never been and is never going to be.

  53. Eric Dondero Says:

    Responses:

    Funny the “Party of Big Government” (the Republicans) and George W. Bush just appointed a bonafide Libertarian from the Cato Institute Andrew Briggs as UnderSecretary of the Social Security Admin. That makes 7 () Libertarian Appointments by Bush in his 6 years in office, more than any other Previous President ever. Of course, there’s been a total news blackout on this in the libertarian press. Doesn’t quite fit the “Bush is bad on everything” template.

    “Eric the Racist.” Nope. Eric the Anti-Islamo-Fascist is more like it. Hey, if Condy would run, I’d be all in favor of her. Ditto for Colin Powell, or Michael Steele, or my personal favorite Larry Elder. HUSSEIN Obama is an absolute Fascist. Being Black has nothing to do with it. It’s the fact that he’s a member of America’s Fascist Party - the Democrats, and his Fascist voting record, that’s the problem.

    Finally, I’m hearing that both Doug Stanhop AND Wayne Root will run for the LP Nomination. This ought to be interesting.

    Yes, I’m fully aware that Stanhope has a different position than me on foreign policy. But I’d still support him running as an LPer. I’d still work for Rudy (or Fred) nationally, and seeing that I live in Texas, a safe GOP State, I’d probably vote for Stanhope just to shake things up, and give another vote to the Libertarians.

    So, call me a Rudy for President as a Republican, and Doug Stanhope for President as a Libertarian supporter. I like them both.

  54. [email protected] Says:

    Quoth Eric Dondero:

    “Funny the ‘Party of Big Government’ (the Republicans) and George W. Bush just appointed a bonafide Libertarian from the Cato Institute Andrew Briggs as UnderSecretary of the Social Security Admin. That makes 7 () Libertarian Appointments by Bush in his 6 years in office, more than any other Previous President ever.”

    Actually, it’s not really funny at all. It’s just that you gauge the GOP’s “libertarianism” on the basis of whom the president pats on the head rather than on what the party actually does.

    Questions:

    - How much did the Republican administration and the Republican Congress cut the federal budget by during the time when they held the White House and majorities in both houses of Congress?
    - So more “libertarians” have been appointed to government jobs. Fine. How many FEWER government jobs ARE there to appoint “libertarians” TO after half a decade of complete Republican dominance?
    - In 1980, eliminating the Department of Education was one of Ronald Reagan’s campaign planks. In 1994, eliminating the Department of Education was one of the incoming Republican majority’s promises. From 1980 to 1994, the excuse was that the Democrats had Congress. From 1995-2001, the excuse was that the Democrats held the White House. On what date, during the period of Republican control of both the White House and Congress after 2001, was the DoE eliminated? I’d like to know so that I can celebrate it as a personal holiday.
    - How large was the population of those imprisoned for victimless “crimes” when the Republican administration and Republican majority took power? How much had that population declined when it left power?
    - How many people, if arrested, could invoke the standard, time-honored constitutional protections for those accused of crimes and expect to have that invocation honored, at the time the Republican administration and Republican majority took power? How many can reasonably expect that invocation to be honored now?

    The “Bush has appointed x ‘libertarians’” mantra is great, just like any NFL coach’s brag about the quality of his first-round draft picks and how he talked the team owner into blowing a few extra million on an up-and-coming quarterback. It sounds good, but if the team doesn’t win games, it doesn’t really mean a lot.

  55. matt Says:

    [email protected],
    I think the two of us are agreed about how profoundly evil today’s GOP is.
    The thing is, we have no way of knowing what the GOP will be like in the future. Neoconservatism is dead because most Americans hate it. Political parties adapt to such changes. In open primary states, we can force them to adapt. If the treatment fails, we are in a good position to handle that as well.

    If Ron Paul fails to get the GOP nod (and I know he’s a longshot), I will be pounding the streets for Kubby or whoever else. If the CP nominates someone who’s reasonably pro-liberty and the LP doesn’t, I’ll adjust accordingly. Choices are good.

  56. matt Says:

    Eric,
    So you’re saying that the Bush Administration hires former libertarians like those in the Cato crowd? Nice, but how is that relevant? Call me when they hire a cabinet member from the Mises Institute or something. The Republican party can continue to be a retirement home for libertarians who have given up and want to cash in before they retire. That doesn’t affect us lifers one bit.

  57. Andy Says:

    “For the same reason that any Libertarian Party member should be ashamed to donate money to a candidate for the Nazi Party’s nomination just because that candidate says he is against herding all the Jews, homosexuals, and Jehovah’s Witnesses into gas chambers. Even if he’s against those things, his party is for them, and when you support a candidate you’re supporting that candidate’s party.

    The Republican Party is, and always has been, a party of big—and, when “necessary,” which it will always become, tyrannical—government. Supporting a “libertarian Republican” candidate for office may seem, as a surface impression, like a way of taking over the GOP and turning it into something it has never been … but that’s never going to happen. The real sum result of supporting ‘libertarian Republicans’ is that doing so gives the GOP a propaganda tool that allows it to masquerade as something it’s never been and is never going to be.”

    Tom, I agree that generally speaking, the Republican Party sucks and always has sucked. However, I like to look at the PERSON rather than the party label. I don’t give a damn what label you put on him, Ron Paul is still Ron Paul. Ron Paul could run as the Communist Party candidate and he’d still be Ron Paul. The PERSON is more important than the party label. I’ve been following Ron Paul for a long time and I’ve got a lot of respect for the man.

    The Democratic Party came out of the Democratic-Republican Party of Thomas Jefferson and at one time the Democratic Party was at least generally on the side of limited government (compared to the Democrats and Republicans for today). It was during the early half of the last century that the Democratic Party was TAKEN OVER by socialist & communist who infiltrated the Democratic Party. There was a Socialist Party but the Socialist Party itself didn’t win that many offices. It was by INFILTRATING the Democratic Party that got socialist legislation passed, and of course the Republican Party went along with this.

    Going through a minor party is merely one tactic for getting an agenda through. Another tactic is through INFILTRATING the major parties. Ron Paul has been the most successful libertarian to do this. The party label is not as important as the PERSON or as WHAT THE PERSON DOES. So if a libertarian can get elected as a Republican or as a Democrat I see that as a good thing. I know that a libertarian in New Hampshire was elected to the state legislature there as a Democrat - I believe his name is Joel Winters. A libertarian in Florida named Frank Gonzalez ran as a Democrat for Congress and recieved like 42% of the vote which is more than any big “L” Libertarian has ever recieved in a race for Congress.

    Also, you can’t deny the fact that Ron Paul has better name recognition, can raise more money, can get more publicity, and can get in more places than anyone who is seeking the Libertarian Party Presidential nomination. The first Republican Primary Presidential Debate is going to be held next month and Ron Paul is going to be up on a stage debating the likes of Giuliani, McCain, Romney, etc… This debate will be shown on national television. The sad fact is that nobody seeking the Libertarian Party Presidential nomination will get a chance enter a debate like this.

    Hey, I think that it would be great if Steve Kubby could get on Bill Maher or MSN or any other TV appearance that Ron Paul has made thus far but the fact is that it’s not happening and is probably not going to happen soon and may not happen at all. In every TV appearance and news article I’ve seen about Ron Paul’s campaign the word libertarian has been mentioned several times. Ron clearly has views that are different than the other candidates who are seeking the Republican nomination so when people hear Ron Paul speak and they think, “Hey, I agree with that.” and then they hear the word libertarian it will increase public knowledge of and acceptance for the libertarian movement, including the Libertarian Party.

    My advice to the Ron Paul campaign would be to really try to stand out from the rest of the Republican candidates and to attack them on issues that have large constituencies in the Republican rank-and-file where the leading candidates - Giuliani, McCain, and Romney - are weak. One of these issues is gun rights. Ron has never voted for a gun control bill and has the highest possible rating from Gun Owners of America. Giuliani, McCain, and Romney are all gun grabbers. This would be a great weakness for Ron to exploit.

    I don’t believe that there is only one tactic we should take in the struggle for liberty. Some should take the minor party or indepedent route, some should take the infiltrator route, and some should do things that are outside of running for office. Combine all of this stuff together and maybe one day we can win this fight.

  58. Andy Says:

    “So, call me a Rudy for President as a Republican, and Doug Stanhope for President as a Libertarian supporter. I like them both.”

    Why do you like Doug Stanhope when Doug Stanhope is opposed to the “War on Terror”? Doug Stanhope is closer to my views than he is to yours.

  59. Andy Says:

    “Eric Dondero Says:

    April 8th, 2007 at 12:01 pm
    Responses:

    Funny the “Party of Big Government” (the Republicans) and George W. Bush just appointed a bonafide Libertarian from the Cato Institute Andrew Briggs as UnderSecretary of the Social Security Admin. That makes 7 () Libertarian Appointments by Bush in his 6 years in office, more than any other Previous President ever. Of course, there’s been a total news blackout on this in the libertarian press. Doesn’t quite fit the “Bush is bad on everything” template.”

    I don’t fully trust the Cato Institute and I don’t automatically assume that everyone that has the libertarian label put on them is really a libertarian.

    Cato Institute Review
    The Cato Institute receives a libertarian index rating of 5.

    The Cato Institute bothers me. It’s not that they are that bad of a think tank. After all, you’d be challenged to find another Washington based organization that even mentions free markets and individual rights (in a positive context). But when push comes to shove, the Cato Institute is a group of sell-outs and compromisors.

    As a true libertarian, it is aggravating that the mainstream conception of libertarians is largely dictated by the Cato Institute and the Libertarian Party. Whenever challenged with the ideas of anarcho-capitalists (the real libertarians), the Cato crowd will shrug them off like you would with that crazy relative of yours no one really takes seriously. You see, the principled idea of liberty embarrasses the Cato Institute. They are too concerned with getting invited to neo-conservative cocktail parties to bother with a few fringe dissenters.

    In fact, it can be challenging to distinguish between the Cato Institute and National Review, as their arguments are often similar. Like the LP, the Cato Institute does not argue based on proper ethics, or even free-market economics (a la the Mises Institute), but instead on ad hoc utilitarian points. Read their releases, and you will find insignificant proposals for “libertarian” ideas on how to improve government, or attacks on the scientific methods of environmental studies. Such ideas as transferring two percent of social security into Wall Street stocks or school vouchers for urban students are trivial at best. Most of what the Cato Institute does is not arguing against the fundamental premises of government but instead arguing how it could be made better if planned by University of Chicago economists. Such a strategy will not change many minds in favor of liberty.

    The lame approach of the Cato Institute towards liberty does not appear to be an accident. One gets the impression that the think tank long ago decided that the gradualist approach was the only way to reach liberty. People like Murray Rothbard either jumped ship or were kicked out, and the leftovers went to work in Washington. Over time, the appeal of government power sufficiently warped them that now the observer has no idea whether the Cato crowd even has liberty as an end goal. At best, the Cato Institute is irrelevant. At worst, it gives the impression that libertarians are Republicans who smoke weed.

  60. Joseph Says:

    Robert Milnes, while you would be welcome at the LPNM convention your absence won’t break my heart because (1) you never said you would come, and (2) as far as LP politics, you are only a minor player, not in the same league as Phillies, Smith, and Stanhope.

  61. Trent Hill Says:

    And Kubby.

  62. Robert Milnes Says:

    Joseph, I’d have to check but I think the NM convention sent out an open invitation to pres. candidates to which I replied with my usual “I’ll try to attend”. In my personal life I’m hard pressed to do anything. Did I gather correctly?; many if not all candidates are not going to many of these conventions largely because of scarcity of campaign contributions? And evidently Ron Paul is getting a lot of lib. support. Stanhope would have an advantage in that his gig could in effect be his campaign. Minor player? Perhaps. My own opinion is that I’m by far the best candidate if only for strategic reasons. If libs want to do the same thing & expect different results, that’s beyond me.

  63. matt Says:

    Robert,
    How does being “hard pressed to do anything” in your personal life jive with your being the best candidate?

  64. Robert Milnes Says:

    Joseph, I would suggest as field leveling remedy video conferencing for candidates who cannot make a personal appearance. It is readily available technology & not too expensive. Matt, whoever advocates & pursues the progressive alliance strategy and is most “electable” would by far be the best candidate. So far I’m the only one therefore by default I’m by far the best candidate.

  65. [email protected] Says:

    Robert,

    In what precise respect do you regard yourself as “electable?”

    To be fair, none of the current candidates for the LP’s presidential nomination have been elected to public office (which would be one good indicator of “electability”) so far as I know … but some of them have at least engaged, with varying degrees of success, in politics, or academic or community involvement, before deciding to run for president. Please share your resume of similar qualifications.

    As far as strategy goes, a “progressive alliance” strategy in the round—i.e. appealing to disenfranchised leftists who are focused on civil liberties issues right now—is a good idea. Your version of it, however, is a technical nightmare requiring decisions that are unlikely to be made by the required actors in some cases, and impossible for said actors to make in others: Even if the national conventions of both the LP and the Green Party agreed to nominate the same presidential/vice-presidential slate, it’s unlikely that most state LPs and GPs would agree to refrain from seeking their own ballot access and running their own candidates in order to have support “unity tickets.”

    It becomes even less likely when the putative “progressive alliance” candidate runs on issues positions that neither libertarians nor greens tend to support. Eugenics for American Indians, mass “compensated repatriation” for African-Americans, sealed borders and continued US meddling in Iraq aren’t exactly positions geared toward such an alliance.If you throw in repealing the vote for women, you might be able to attract the snake handler/Ku Klux Klan vote, though.

  66. Search Ron Paul Says:

    Have you seen the President Ron Paul search engine?

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