Fox Business Channel Libertarian Debate

Part Two here. Parts Three, Four, Five, Six.

104 Responses to “Fox Business Channel Libertarian Debate”

  1. Brian Miller Says:

    The claim that “the other two Libertarian candidates with the most money to run are Gravel and Root” are laughably false.

    Dr. George Phillies has raised the most money of any serious, FEC-registered Libertarian Party candidate.

    It would appear that Barr is in second place at around $98K.

    Root is in THIRD place.

    Gravel is in negative territory (debts exceeding funds on hand), and has less money than smaller-scale candidacies by Christine Smith and Steve Kubby.

    All of these numbers are published on candidate web sites and FEC reports. While I know the media is renowned for its inaccuracy, it’s absolutely outrageous for them to claim their determination was made on the criteria of fundraising when it is easily demonstrated to be completely false.

    A fair debate would have also included Dr. Phillies, Dr. Ruwart, Ms. Smith, and Mr. Kubby.

    Now I understand that this is FOX, and so it’s going to be a Republican-controlled debate to facilitate the GOP’s messaging, but I am hopeful that the folks at Reason can be convinced to hold a real debate with the full spectrum of serious candidates.

  2. JT Says:

    Brian: “The claim that “the other two Libertarian candidates with the most money to run are Gravel and Root” are laughably false.”

    You’re right. She should have said, “the other two Libertarian candidates who have any chance whatsoever of getting on national TV before the election.”

    Also, what’s Gravel smoking? This notion of replacing oil with wind power in the near future is scientifically absurd. Why doesn’t he run for the Green nomination?

  3. Brian Miller Says:

    “the other two Libertarian candidates who have any chance whatsoever of getting on national TV before the election.”

    That’s also not true.

    FOX Business “news” is a niche cable station with fewer viewers than Viacom LOGO.

    Outright can easily get the Libertarian nominee for president on LOGO. If FBN, with its limited distribution and poor ratings, is “national TV,” than LOGO is super-national TV.

  4. Ross Says:

    Gravel has raised the most money out of any candidate running, just to clear things up. I’ve heard a few figures about how much he’s raised, the most being over $530,000. Last time I heard his debts were around $80,000.

    It’s ridiculous that FOX didn’t include other candidates. They’re treating the debates like a major party debate, where the establishment want to minimize the amount of voices heard.

  5. Eric Sundwall Says:

    The most important aspect of this face-off was the mutual agreement that a withdrawal from Iraq (and other areas) is paramount. Given the presumed audience, that association for the LP is positive to the extent it affects (perhaps somehow) those who disagree.

    It was interesting to see an extension of time for passerbys and the third string analysts actually attempting to cover some aspect of the imminent nomination. Fair and balanced ? Of course not. Long term damage ? None so far as the average Fox viewer would equally dismiss any combo of LP candidates (however unfairly they have been denied, HINT: Get Over It).

    Our own will eat themselves, which is self-regulating/damaging enough.

  6. Brian Miller Says:

    They’re treating the debates like a major party debate, where the establishment want to minimize the amount of voices heard.

    I agree. And unfortunately, it seems like some folks within the LP are demanding that this dynamic be carried through to Reason and other proto-libertarian channels, as well as to our convention itself.

  7. Brian Miller Says:

    None so far as the average Fox viewer would equally dismiss any combo of LP candidates (however unfairly they have been denied, HINT: Get Over It).

    I’m less concerned about FOX’s exclusionary nature and wannabe kingmaker status, which are par for the course in the media.

    I’m more concerned by the fact that easily-demonstrable false statements were made by FBN in the first minute of the discussion. Those false statements do cause lasting damage to candidates who have been discounted based on the false statements, and it’s not something to “get over.”

    Rather, it’s important that those inaccurate statements be pointed out. After all, Libertarians have a long, illustrious history of making bad decisions based on bad data—the GIGO principle in action. And FBN was providing garbage data.

  8. The Dylan Says:

    Wayne is right when he says that LP candidates can get free media exposure if they are entertaining enough. I work in broadcasting and I am certain that the Producers at FOX Business don’t care about fundraising or political experience. They want characters that can hold the attention of an audience and names that we’ll recognize. That’s it.

    Let this demonstrate what is wrong with simply choosing the candidate that is most loyal to the platform. If we hope to grow our party, we need candidates who will be welcomed at FOX, MSNBC, CNN, and others. As much as I like Michael Badnarik, good ideas alone do not attract viewers.

    Bob Barr was also invited but was apparently not available.

  9. The Dylan Says:

    I agree that this was not a real debate without Mary, Steve, Bob, and George.

    When it comes to general consumption, it may just be a “can’t handle the truth” scenario. A full field of Libertarian candidates arguing over just how much government should be eliminated. The average viewer wouldn’t know what to do!

  10. Brian Miller Says:

    If we hope to grow our party, we need candidates who will be welcomed at FOX, MSNBC, CNN, and others.

    Which is why the Libertarian Party should make an immediate effort to recruit Hillary Clinton.

    She’s losing the Democratic Party nomination, but has a MASSIVE base of supporters who she can bring into the party. Her message on ending the Iraq War isn’t platform perfect, but trends toward liberty. So do her positions on FISA and the PATRIOT Act.

    She’s raised thousands of times the money that all other LP candidates put together have raised. She’s been a regular guest on all the major national networks, and has also had interviews with Bill O’Reilly.

    Hillary Clinton is the Libertarian Party’s best chance for victory! Let’s Draft Hillary today!

  11. JT Says:

    Brian, who said anything about FOX Business news? I just said “national TV.”

    George Phillies, while extremely devoted to the LP, is also a hardcore geek with no TV experience and no public name. Bob Barr and Mike Gravel are former politicians who can get national TV time on that basis. Wayne Root is a TV sports handicapper who can get national TV time on that basis.

    As for the idea of having all the LP candidates on at the same time, that’s stupid. The host was barely keeping things moving in a very tight amount of time with just 2 candidates. Can you imagine what a mess it would have been with six or more? Each of them would have had about 15 seconds per answer.

  12. Brian Miller Says:

    Well, I suppose if the only measure of a Libertarian candidate is his ability to get on national TV, we must nominate Hillary Clinton without delay.

    She has more national TV exposure in a day than every LP nomination candidate of all time, put together.

    Will you be joining me in a Draft Hillary movement, JT?

  13. Denver Delegate Says:

    Most television media organizations will invite Barr, Gravel and Root on to their programs because they make for more interesting viewing.

    Too bad that a media pro like Root apparently got cued to the wrong camera during the debate.

    As a radical, I quibble with some of the policies advocated, but I think most of them are in the libertarian quadrant.

    Otherwise, well done to both candidates.

  14. Ross Says:

    “Bob Barr was also invited but was apparently not available.”

    I hate to hate on other third party candidates, but Barr is awfully suspicious with things like this. He announces late, which means less time to investigate who he is and what his positions are and what decisions he’s made in the past, and then he rejects an invitation to the only televised Libertarian “debate”. He rejects an invitation to something spontaneous and revealing.

  15. DrGonzo Says:

    Root points out Gravel’s trust in government, but Root puts far to much in the private sector. He acts like if everything is just turned over to the private sector nobody will be taken advantage of. That is as laughable as saying the government won’t take advantage of anyone.

    Gravel proposes a more realistic solution to the problems. Nobody wants taxes, but we clearly need them somewhat. You can’t take the unrealistic approach towards these issues.

  16. JT Says:

    Brian: “Well, I suppose if the only measure of a Libertarian candidate is his ability to get on national TV, we must nominate Hillary Clinton without delay.”

    I didn’t say it was the only measure. It’s an important one though (for a presidential candidate), which evidently you don’t understand. That’s too bad.

    Brian: “Will you be joining me in a Draft Hillary movement, JT?”

    Are you saying you think Hillary Clinton is more libertarian than Wayne Root or Bob Barr? Come back to Earth, Brian.

  17. The Dylan Says:

    But to hear a Libertarian talk about how without government, there would be no education, no health care, and we’d all be broke?! This is why Mike Gravel is simply unacceptable. He’s just a good solid liberal, meaning: he believes in the force of government to satisfy our social goals, despite the countless failed examples of welfarism, socialism and ultimately, mixed economies.

    This is why I could vote for Barr but not Gravel. He just doesn’t get it…

  18. Tom Bryant Says:

    Regarding Clinton/Barr, the comparison is deliberately skewed, or the poster has no concept of a net sum.

    If a candidate proposes (and can realistically deliver) more government shrinkage than growth, the net result is smaller government. That is something that Libertarians should be very cautious about. There is a good possibility that the politician will fail at some shrinking and succeed at more growth, leaving us worse off than before.

    If a candidate proposes some government shrinkage in some areas, and no change in other areas, the net result is also small government. However, there would be no compromise in principles, since even if the candidate fails in all of his shrinking - we’re still left with the same size government (no growth is a win in my book).

    Clinton doesn’t even represent the first scenario. There is no net government loss with her plans. Any shrinking she does will be more than offset by the growth she proposed with her domestic policies.

    Barr has not, to my knowledge, campaigned on increasing government size in any area. He has proposed to shrink a lot of areas of government, while has been status quo on some other areas. The worse case message he would present is that Libertarians want to shrink MOST of the government, but leave a few areas untouched. I’ll take that impression over voters not being exposed to us.

    Libertarians as debaters need to form strategies to score touchdowns. Libertarians as candidates need to kick a field goal when it’s 4th and 20 at the 35 yard line.

    Bob Barr can kick us a field goal. The other candidates propose a hail Mary pass.

  19. wheelers grampa Says:

    This is good. A person from the left, and a person from the right coming together to discuss the positive effect of liberty on society.
    The is just what the American people need to see and hear.

  20. Austin Cassidy Says:

    Wow… I was actually kind of impressed by Root.

  21. Brian Miller Says:

    Are you saying you think Hillary Clinton is more libertarian than Wayne Root or Bob Barr? Come back to Earth, Brian.

    Under the arguments used to advocate elimination of Libertarian purity tests, the argument could be made that this doesn’t matter.

    Clinton doesn’t even represent the first scenario. There is no net government loss with her plans. Any shrinking she does will be more than offset by the growth she proposed with her domestic policies.

    That’s not necessarily true.

    For instance, Clinton is advocating a huge number of tax breaks for business and the middle class.

    She’s also proposing a $100 billion health care plan paid for by eliminating spending in other parts of government.

    A government that taxes less and swaps one program for another is incrementally better than a growing government, right?

    Besides, the other two candidates are nobodies in comparison.

    Clinton has hundreds of millions of dollars in campaign fund strength, millions of new voters, millions of volunteers, and tremendous media time. Why not draft her and bring her along the path of liberty at the same time? She would be an incremental improvement and a breakout candidate who could win 20% or more of the vote.

  22. DrGonzo Says:

    But to hear a Libertarian talk about how without government, there would be no education, no health care, and we’d all be broke?! This is why Mike Gravel is simply unacceptable. He’s just a good solid liberal, meaning: he believes in the force of government to satisfy our social goals, despite the countless failed examples of welfarism, socialism and ultimately, mixed economies.

    I agree there would probably be no educated. If you left certain things up to citizens they would never get done. Many parents could choose to homeschool their children and be very good at it. I think many more would choose not to educate their children. That doesn’t even begin to speak about the quality of education they are actually getting. Then if you have private schools you have to assume everyone will pay enough taxes to keep the school functioning. Face it, some things can’t be done without government. No matter how messed up it is right now.

    My main problem with root is that he thinks privatizing everything will suddenly solve all the worlds problems. What happens when you create corporate monopolies and it is worse off than before. At least the goverment somewhat keeps monopolies from forming so consumers can have a choice.

    I don’t know what the good balance between teh two would be. But I’m also not running for President.

  23. The Dylan Says:

    The question you have to ask is not what kind of a libertarian are you, but what do you hope to accomplish by associating with this thing called the “Libertarian Party”. My interest is in expanding individual liberty wherever I can get it. Under no circumstances does the individual benefit from another Clinton co-presidency. Even Hillary’s foreign policy is one of interventions, invasions, sanctions, and democracy imposed down the barrel of a gun. There is no way to spin the Deomcrat’s plans for our military to the advantage of the average American citizen. It is just more of the same.

  24. The Dylan Says:

    You say, “My main problem with root is that he thinks privatizing everything will suddenly solve all the worlds problems.”

    This is just the trouble with liberals. You think that there must be some system which, once imposed, WILL solve all of the world’s problems.

    Stop comparing freedom with utopia. One is imperfect, but by all measures the best that we humans have ever done for ourselves, and the other is pure fantasy.

  25. DrGonzo Says:

    The question you have to ask is not what kind of a libertarian are you, but what do you hope to accomplish by associating with this thing called the “Libertarian Party”. .

    Ahh the common annoying response when someone has nothing left to post. Instead they resort to the “I’m a better Libertarian than you” argument. There something called reality. The reality is what I just mentioned. You can respond to the statement instead of looking stupid and saying what kind of Libertarian are you.

    This is just the trouble with liberals. You think that there must be some system which, once imposed, WILL solve all of the world’s problems.

    Stop comparing freedom with utopia. One is imperfect, but by all measures the best that we humans have ever done for ourselves, and the other is pure fantasy.

    And you start with the same tired response that purists always have. I’m the furthest thing from a liberal. Realizing there needs to be some government no matter how small does not make you a liberal. It means you live in a place called reality.

    The pure fantasy would be your idea that we need no government and everthing can be privitized. Why would you trade one tyrant for another in private monopolies?

  26. The Dylan Says:

    Private monopolies cannot be maintained by force.

  27. George Phillies Says:
    1. JT Say:

    “...This notion of replacing oil with wind power in the near future is scientifically absurd…”

    Taking a break from politics for the moment, there are no scientific obstacles. Wind power is currently commercial. It is already competitive with standard electrical generating methods. The same is close to true of concentrating solar, not to be confused with photovoltaic.

    What if the wind does not blow and the sun does not shine? Issues with energy storage appear to be solved via compressed air into salt caverns (some issues still under consideration, but you can use wind for peaking) and hot firebrick.

    What are the major obstacles? Capital and manufacturing capacity. You are looking at something like 5-10% of GNP over several decades. Or, at the rate oil prices are climbing, a minor investment that is rapidly extremely profitable.

    The obstacle to the transformation is purely a matter of time and money. Of course, as we libertarians free private industry this will get easier and easier.

  28. DrGonzo Says:

    Private monopolies cannot be maintained by force.

    Since when? If they have the money, they can hire the power.

  29. Brian Miller Says:

    Under no circumstances does the individual benefit from another Clinton co-presidency.

    That’s your opinion, and it seems purist.

    Who is to say that Hillary Clinton would not evolve on the issues just like pro-PATRIOT Act, pro-DOMA, pro-drug-war Bob Barr has?

    Clinton’s record on those issues ended 10 years ago.

    Seems to me to be a case of purism—because Clinton isn’t perfect on every issue, let’s shove her (and the LP’s best chance of winning media attention and coverage and money and support) to the side to support your relatively unknown niche candidate who is purer on the issues than Hillary.

    After all, we’ve already established that we cannot allow purism to get in the way of our larger goal to grow the party—as long as the candidate is reasonably libertarian (or can be brought that way). And we’ve also established, at least in Mr. Barr’s case, that one’s recent voting record is less important than his campaign platform in 2008.

    So long as Hillary could have her platform modified slightly for the LP, she’d be the perfect candidate to meet the immediate goal of growing the LP massively in Election 2008.

  30. DrGonzo Says:

    Who is to say that Hillary Clinton would not evolve on the issues just like pro-PATRIOT Act, pro-DOMA, pro-drug-war Bob Barr has?

    The LP has already accepted Barr. Don’t try to get us to accept Clinton also. Clinton is one of the biggest warmongers there is. She claims to want out of Iraq, but she votes for force almost every time. Its not that she isn’t perfect. Its that she isn’t even close.

  31. Brian Miller Says:

    The LP has already accepted Barr. Don’t try to get us to accept Clinton also.

    So basically, a small group of purist radicals are trying to shut out a larger group of voters to keep their purist debate society, right? ;)

  32. Brian Miller Says:

    And you’d rather lose and be an insignificant force than win with a libertarian-enough message embraced by a well-known, well-funded Hillary Clinton who isn’t libertarian enough on the tests that matter to you, right?

    Gosh, now suddenly you know why some of the so-called radicals are a bit rattled.

    Perspective™ is a good thing.

  33. DrGonzo Says:

    So basically, a small group of purist radicals are trying to shut out a larger group of voters to keep their purist debate society, right?

    Believe me, I am no a purist either. But Clinton is a warmonger. She isn’t even close to a Libertarian. More than that she is just a plain old c*nt.

  34. Fred Church Ortiz Says:

    I think your analogy would hold up better if your “for instance” was the totality of her program, Brian. But it’s not.

  35. Peter Orvetti Says:

    When I was at Cato, Michael Tanner told me that he was next to Hillary Clinton at some dinner in 1993. When he mentioned he was from Cato, she looked at him like he had said, “I have the plague.”

  36. Brian Miller Says:

    The reactions that Bob Barr supporters are giving to Clinton being a Libertarian are identical to the reactions they’re decrying in the reaction to Barr by radical Libertarians—albeit I’ve not seen misogyny (“c*nt”) from any radicals.

    The point I am making is that the Libertarian Party is a voluntary association, and will decide IN TOTALITY who our nominee will be. Just as Barr supporters bristle at the idea of Clinton as nominee because she is unlibertarian in matters that concern THEM, lots of other people have a similar reaction to Barr.

    To dismiss their own debate and criticism as “illegitimate” and “shrinking the party’s chances in November” is hypocritical if you’re not willing to accept someone blasting your own views seeking to run a candidate who is purer in your eyes but would get far less support than Clinton.

    If someone seeking to nominate Mary Ruwart or Christine Smith over Bob Barr is “unrealistic” and seeking to “keep the party out of the big leagues,” why isn’t someone who is seeking to nominate Bob Barr or Wayne Root similarly “unrealistic” when rejecting a big exciting run by Hillary Clinton?

    You can argue it’s because she’s not Libertarian enough, but then you’re right back where you started, because the same criticism has been directed at both Mr. Root and Mr. Barr by the radicals who are getting continuously slammed.

    Both sides are going to have to work with each other, and stop pretending that the LP is a dictatorship where your views, and your views alone, will carry the day after “total victory.” At some point, you’ll have to work with people who are more radical than you are, AND with people who make you look radical. If you’re not willing to do that in a polite and policy-driven manner, please quit now.

  37. Ross Says:

    Now, as I see it the problem with Barr (and Clinton, but that’s not even worth mentioning really) is not with his more moderate politics, but with the way he conducts his political career. It is politics as usual - contributing to corporate Republicans, pandering to get a vote or two (shall we go into the nuances of his stance on gay marriage?), and just generally having the attitude of the corrupt, corporatist elites that control the two major parties.

    From what I have seen, Barr is not a principled man that would well represent the “party of principles.”

  38. Brian Miller Says:

    And for those with an irony deficiency, of COURSE I am not in favor of a Clinton LP run.

  39. Austrian Economist Says:

    Root’s snarky one-note used car salesman schtick was in full effect.

    Could he honestly be any more ignorant with respect to energy policy?

    Drilling in Alaska, MORE oil/coal/nuclear? Is the guy that dim-witted? Does he not realize these are the most massively subsidized industries out there? Does he even understand what a true, free market is? Apparently not.

    And he also universally dumps on lawyers. That’s about as ignorant and ill-informed a statement there is. No qualifiers, he vilifies the profession with a brush stroke as wide as his fluffy hair.

  40. Fred Church Ortiz Says:

    “Both sides are going to have to work with each other, and stop pretending that the LP is a dictatorship where your views, and your views alone, will carry the day after “total victory.” At some point, you’ll have to work with people who are more radical than you are, AND with people who make you look radical.”

    That would require acceptance that reasonable people can disagree. It’s probably a non-starter.

  41. Mike Theodore Says:

    Has anyone noticed that Root has that briefcase everywhere he goes. Every debate. It just sits there.
    What’s he got in there….

  42. DrGonzo Says:

    Brian,

    I understand what you are saying when it comes to compromising on Libertarians, but your analogy makes no sense. Your analogy is the same thing as asking Republicans to accept Clinton as a nomination. All she would have to do is basically change every one of her views. It isn’t because Clinton isn’t Libertarian enough. It is because she isn’t Libertarian at all.

    And yes, c*nt is the best adjective to describe Clinton.

  43. Kenny Says:

    Note that the supporters of the GOP “converts” dismiss loyal LP members as “purists”. I am a “purist” who initially welcolmed the participation of Root and Barr but their “supporters” have appalled me with their nasty name-calling. It’s as if Karl Rove’s team have infiltrated the LP to destroy it. I’ll take purists over GOP entryists any day. It is integrity versus opportunism and I support integrity - it is now Ruwart for me.

  44. Hardy Macia Says:

    I think Gravel did a good job of reminding viewers to consider the Libertarian Party as their solution.

    It was a good contrast between Root and Gravel. Root shouldn’t have debated Gravel so much as used the time to talk to the viewers. I’m glad we have candidates seeking our nomination that can get national media coverage. Even if not ideal, it will wake voters up to the fact that they have another choice beyond the Ds and Rs.

    Root also picked Vermont as an example state to buy insurance from… I know it was just an example, but Vermont is one of the worse examples. I moved from Vermont to New Hampshire and my health insurance costs dropped by 75%.

  45. David K. Williams, Jr. Says:

    Gravel sounds like a great candidate. For the Greens.

  46. David K. Williams, Jr. Says:

    Mike Theodore wrote:

    “Has anyone noticed that Root has that briefcase everywhere he goes. Every debate. It just sits there.
    What’s he got in there….”

    Marcellus Wallace’ soul?

  47. Fred Church Ortiz Says:

    By the way, is anyone else having site trouble since this video went up? I have this article and the homepage only partially loading on the first few tries.

  48. Mike Theodore Says:

    Fred,
    Mine was a little hesitant when it was loading, but it made it through. This usually happens when they put up a weird media player. Same thing back when they had the Baldwin victory speech play itself when it loaded. Wait on it, if it persists, contact Gordon or something.

  49. NAMBLA FOR MARY '08 Says:

    WHERE’S MARY? WE WANT MARY! WE WANT MARY!

  50. John Anderson Says:

    I agree that Root did better than expected, but I thought the Senator won the “debate”- if you can call it that, I don’t think that 1 and a half minute soundbites on the issues a debate.

  51. RetroCon Says:

    Yeah, but it was still more substantive than most of the Dem or GOP “debates”

  52. Kenny Says:

    NAMBLA - Neocon And McCain-Bush Lovers Alliance

  53. Jerry S. Says:

    Brian Miller Says:

    May 16th, 2008 at 2:53 pm
    ...
    FOX Business “news” is a niche cable station with fewer viewers than Viacom LOGO.

    Outright can easily get the Libertarian nominee for president on LOGO. If FBN, with its limited distribution and poor ratings, is “national TV,” than LOGO is super-national TV.

    ***
    This is where mistakes are made by third parties in this age of satelite television. Take every possible advantage you can, to get on the boob tube. Why hasn’t someone got LOGO to have Phillies, Ruwart, Kubby, Smith,etc on their network to debate?

    We need to take advantage of ALL stations where we can get coverage. Not just worry about FoxNews, CNN, MSNBC, etc. They don’t really have a HUGH audience anyway and let’s face it, their viewers are fairly brainwashed to only the Ds and Rs. They won’t give us much coverage, so we must go around them to other stations to reach the vast numbers of undecided.

    This was good for the Party. Television is almost always GOOD for the Party!

    I do have questions, why no Barr ? Would 5 million windmills solve most of our energy problems?

    I saw a show on FSTV that showed that the electric cars were taken off the market by the auto manufacturers, with no credible explanation. Solar and wind power can be converted to electricity, so electric cars could be a major step in the right direction. The electric producing windmills could be placed on private property and owned by private individuals and/or families. There are currently companies who sale solar panels that can run a refrigrator or TV & lamps, etc. for about a grand. I know cost is the big thing, but if gas goes to $10 a gallon all options could be feasible. We all will be in major trouble if it goes to $10 a gallon. America could certainly vote third party in such a senario !

  54. David F. Nolan Says:

    “And yes, c*nt is the best adjective to describe Clinton.”

    C*nt is a noun.

  55. Austrian Economist Says:

    Dr. Phillies,

    Thank you for stopping by and bringing the wisdom!

    ......................
    When will the Libertarian nutbags realize that being environmentally aware and freedom-loving are one and the same, that not only the Greens think it’s important to have clean air, food & water?

    The free market can only do so much. A little bit of natural spirit and awareness of the planet isn’t a bad thing.

    And guess what? There is a rather large Commons in society. It’s called the Earth.

  56. Austrian Economist Says:

    Further, having watched the entire debate now, it just illustrates HOW grossly ill-informed Wayne Allyn Root is.

    Gravel’s right; he romanticizes the private sector as though it’ll be an endless choir of angels to bring our economy and society to salvation!

    It’s utter lunacy! He’s like a chattering loop of motivational speeches chopped up and sped up to sound like The Chipmunks.

    He’s so dumb as to suggest the melting of Greenland is “good,” as he chimed in edgewise against Gravel. Frankly, that level of ignorance, said with such arrogance, frightens me.

  57. G.E. Says:

    “Austrian Economist” for Philles… You should change your name to English Mercantilist.

  58. Steve Newton Says:

    Speaking of media, how does the LP justify denying press credentials to Last Free Voice on the questionable (and obviously deceptive) premise that the blog does not get enough hits to merit one?

    Speaking as another small-scale Libertarian blogger (Delaware Libertarian) I am more chilled by the idea that we’re now vetting the media than by anything else that’s happened in recent debates.

    And how likely is it that the fact that Last Free Voice has been doing some serious digging into Bob Barr’s history and credentials influenced that decision.

    Here’s the link (dead so this post will go through)

    lastfreevoice.wordpress.com/2008/05/17/lp-refuses-lfv-press-credentials-for-convention/

  59. Jonathan Says:

    it is 9:31 pm and we need $250 to reach $100,000 everyone sned an email to 1 friend and spread the word www.bobbarr2008.com

  60. Austrian Economist Says:

    heyyyyyyyyyy G.E.

    Your sense of humor is as unwaveringly flat-footed as your rhetoric.

    Hiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii Jonathan

    So good of you to come along and spam for Bob Barr. By the way, why did your fearless leader not accept the invitation to debate Gravel and Root today?

  61. Conspiracy Theorist Says:

    I do not like quite a bit about Root but he nailed Gravel on the fair tax. Gravels response was nothing short of a typical liberal attack on Libertarians. He, of course, assumes without government running heathcare and education no one would be healthy or smart.

    Gravel was an easy target for Root. Give Root crap for his other stances but he is a steadfast Libertarian in the economic sphere and Gravel is not. Gravel rants and raves demonstrating exactly why his credibility in the Libertarian Party is suspect. The bottom line is that he continues to come back to economic intervention and a federal democracy, which is the worst idea since the national bank.

  62. Jerry S. Says:

    I understand Free Speech TV is HQed in Denver. Has the LP invited them to cover the convention. They are progressive, but they do show Russo’s Freedom to Fascism. It could get coverage to maybe a million people who wouldn’t be watching CSPAN. Whoever is in charge needs to invite them. Alternative media can really help get the message out.

  63. Peter Orvetti Says:

    What day and time is the actual convention voting for president and vice president? The online schedule is pretty unclear.

  64. DrGonzo Says:

    The bottom line is that he continues to come back to economic intervention and a federal democracy, which is the worst idea since the national bank.

    Why is it the worst idea? If they follow the Libertarian principles of no people may empower a government to infringe on the rights of others it could work. Have you researched it at all? Why would you be opposed to returning the government to the people?

    Gravel is the exact opposite of Root. Root wants to privatize everthing and Gravel thinks government needs to be involved in many sectors.

    I actually agree with Gravel on education, but not healthcare.

  65. disinter Says:

    Good lord, Gravel has bought into the global warming hoax.

    The retard caucus should be proud.

  66. DrGonzo Says:

    Good lord, Gravel has bought into the global warming hoax.

    The retard caucus should be proud.

    Yeah, I agree.

    If anything though, it will resonate with many other voters. It is a popular cause right now so its not horrible that he believes in it.

  67. Ross Says:

    Regardless of whether global warming is real or not, we are poisoning our Earth in countless ways. And surely you can see what’s wrong with that! You’re part of the Earth!

    A lot of people fail to realize that there is a difference between what he typically see in modern government and government run intelligently. Typical government would be the bloated, destructive thing now. If run intelligently, as Gravel wants, it could be relatively small and promote the general well-being of the people without infringing upon their rights. Especially if the people had the right to control the government.

  68. disinter Says:

    Having just finished part 3, I must say that Gravel must be the retard caucus’s dream candidate. He is so far from being Libertarian he should join the Outright Liber-Nazis.

  69. Ross Says:

    Oh, and maybe I would donate to Barr if he hadn’t rejected the invitation to the debate…

  70. disinter Says:

    Oh, and maybe I would donate to Barr if he hadn’t rejected the invitation to the debate…

    He probably knows he has the nomination wrapped up, unfortunately.

    I think the best ticket for the retard caucus and media attention is Barr/Root or Barr/Gravel.

    Libertarians should nominate Ruwart/Kubby.

  71. Peter Orvetti Says:

    CNN Money piece on Barr, Jingozian, Kubby, Link, and Root:

    money.cnn.com/galleries/2008/fsb/0805/gallery.small_biz_owners_for_prez.fsb/

  72. Mike Theodore Says:

    Libertarians should nominate Ruwart/Kubby.

    Is the sad fact that this is becoming less apparent in Libertarian minds the reason you’ve been a wee bit grumpy lately on here?

  73. Andy Says:

    Why weren’t the other candidates included in this debate? Mary Ruwart, Steve Kubby, George Phillies, and Michael Jingozian should have been invited. I heard that Bob Barr was invited but that he chickened out.

  74. disinter Says:

    Is the sad fact that this is becoming less apparent in Libertarian minds the reason you’ve been a wee bit grumpy lately on here?

    No, but it looks like it is yours:
    http://thirdpartywatch.com/2008/05/15/bob-barr-on-fox/#comment-607413

  75. Mike Theodore Says:

    Plus I’m sleepy. Never good. What I need to do is get a good nights sleep and a nice meal. That’ll do it.
    I might just sleep through the whole convention, wake up, and slosh my way to the top of whatever swamp has been lain upon the party.

  76. Peter Orvetti Says:

    Bob Novak on Barr:

    RON PAUL’S TROOPS
    There is no sign so far that the resources of Rep. Ron Paul’s Republican presidential campaign will be made available to former GOP Rep. Bob Barr as the Libertarian Party candidate, but McCain strategists fear that will be the case.
    Barr is running on much the same issues as Paul, including opposition to the military intervention in Iraq. Paul, the Libertarian candidate in 1988, has never ended his campaign for the Republican nomination and has continued to pile up impressive primary totals against Sen. John McCain. Paul has indicated he never will endorse McCain.
    Without help from Paul’s impressive national network, Barr would be unlikely to perform better than the usual Libertarian presidential nominees.

  77. Linda Says:

    Brian Miller says: “The point I am making is that the Libertarian Party is a voluntary association, and will decide IN TOTALITY who our nominee will be.”

    Not quite “in totality”. In reality, only the people who happen to live near Denver or can afford to spend $500 or so to travel across the country, buy a ticket, and stay in a hotel, will be able to participate in that decision.

  78. DrGonzo Says:

    Not quite “in totality”. In reality, only the people who happen to live near Denver or can afford to spend $500 or so to travel across the country, buy a ticket, and stay in a hotel, will be able to participate in that decision.

    Thats a good point. I was supposed to be a delegate, but I’m also a recently unemployed college graduate. Makes it difficult to travel to Denver.

  79. Jeff Wartman Says:

    What day and time is the actual convention voting for president and vice president? The online schedule is pretty unclear.

    On Sunday. I’m not sure of the exact time.

  80. Hardy Macia Says:

    >What day and time is the actual convention voting for president and
    >vice president? The online schedule is pretty unclear.

    I think it is going to be
    5:00 pm Sunday.
    Back-to-Back: Presidential nominations & balloting, Vice President, Chair, Vice Chair

  81. Jim Davidson Says:

    The good news is, libertarian candidates are getting national attention. Those who think the LP is not hard core enough might like to learn more about the Boston Tea Party, founded after the platform fiasco in 2006. Info at bostontea.us

  82. Stefan Says:

    Brian:
    You know a few weeks ago I did see a post on TPW by James Carville mentioning a
    Clinton insider about the possibility of a LP ticket for Clinton. Personally I doubt it very much from both Clinton’s and the LP’s side. Clinton would not want to give up her seat and party. Remember Obama en CLinton are very much running on the same platform, just difference in emphasis and about personality. Of COurse Hillary very much want to get the presidency….she could always go on the VP slot of the Dems. The LP would have a difficult time with someone for universal health care and threatening to destroy Iran on their platform and Hillary cannot change significantly in a short period of time.
    But only theoretically it is an interesting thought “experiment”: think of it, CLinton and Barr on the same ticket :-)

  83. Stefan Says:

    Dr. Phillies: interesting comments you make. Your strenths in scientific field and soem bright ideas should definitely be taken up and some adopted and integrated into the platform and discussion should you not receive the nomination (and if you get the nomination, then it will be in any case :-)
    Now regarding oil dependency and wind and solar, yes wind and solar has over time be an alternative method, though the wind power plants are expensive. Some European countries like Denmark generate quite a substantial percentage from wind power. This is very expensive though, as you indicated. Yet, the US and most countries will be dependent on significant amounts of oil for the forseeable decades, you cannot be totally independent upon oil and gas. How else are you going to power vehicles, busses and trucks? Biofuel is still very expensive and subsidized at a lost. Instead of ethanol, sugar may be a good option to look into. Yet it must become profitable over time. In Europe and Japan, the most advanced int hsi field, they are still miles away from implementing it to the majority of new vehicles. Gas is perhaps also an idea. It is cheaper than oil and in a country like SOuth Korea ALL vehicles run on gas, which enabled them to save a lot in the 170’s and the energy crisis and all the time every since.

  84. Kenny Says:

    Stefan, the thought of Hilary Clinton as the LP nomination fills me with horror. It would also destroy the party. There is more to politics than winning votes from the main parties.

  85. Steven R Linnabary Says:

    This is the first time I’ve seen Gravel actually propose any nationalized health care proposal. I had read elsewhere that he supported it, but had never heard him say it.

    That, and his support for government schools has deflated my flirtation with the silver bullet of formerly mainstream politicians as banner carrier in the LP.

    I had ordered a Gravel t-shirt, hoped it would arrive in time for today’s HempFest (Im supposed to be one of the speakers). Now I’m not too disappointed that it didn’t come.

    PEACE
    Steve

  86. Austrian Economist Says:

    disinter:

    Where exactly does an obstinate little slug like yourself even live?

    You are probably, through and through, the most negative person I’ve ever heard. And you must attribute that to your all-seeing wisdom, that few if any can appreciate.

    It’s really laughable the rock under which you drape your world outlook. But hey, back to your bunker compound, where the dream ticket of Kubby & Ruwart will revitalize the whole country with their ferocious leadership!

  87. Austrian Economist Says:

    Awwww, Steve Linnabary got his heart broken by someone who actually prioritizes education and healthcare.

    Letting the free market and private sector magically solve everything is like having your precocious 16-year old daughter go out with the captain of the football team and assume they’ll just hold hands.

    I mean, are you that rigid? That mental?

  88. Stewart Flood Says:

    Brian is absolutely correct that Fox News Channel has no viewers. Comcast doesn’t carry it unless you pay extra for their “digital” service. Hardly anyone watches it, and the forum—as pointed out above—would hardly have worked with more than two candidates.

    That said, I do have to say that any positive exposure is usually good. The debate went well, although the part with people “on the street” asking questions was lame.

    Root kept looking down at his image in the teleprompter, rather than into the camera. The camera was too close to Gravel, so every time he moved he came into the shot. Another camera angle they used clearly showed Wayne looking into the monitor while he was talking. The director also cut away several times to a split image with both candidates appearing to stand oriented away from each other. The direction was horrible.

    Watching the video clip was my first opportunity to watch this new, and clearly amateur, “news” channel. I’m glad I’m not wasting my money on “digital” tv.

    Who won the debate? I call it a draw, which is actually a victory for Gravel. Both candidates increased their credibility with the public (or at least the Fox viewers), and the party logo actually looked good the way they presented it. I don’t think they were trying to make us look bad.

  89. Austrian Economist Says:

    One final note, Steve:

    WHERE does it say Gravel wants a Nationalized Healthcare? You know that he DOESN’T want Universal Medicare/Medicaid like Kucinich & Nader?

    You know that he wants multiple providers to compete to provide affordable healthcare to citizens? Just because he thinks healthcare is a right in the Western world doesn’t make him a socialist.

    QUESTION: Which are the only two industrialized nations that do not provide healthcare to their citizens?

    1) USA
    2) South Africa

    That’s great company to be in, especially considering the primary reason that South Africa cannot do so is due to the massive, massive poverty and inequities from apartheid.

    So, we’re essentially as good as a country that had segregation less than 2 decades ago. What does that say about us?

    “rabble rabble, i’m no socialist liberal-nazi! private industry 4 EVA

    Sadly, that’s about how well some of you twits would answer.

  90. Clark Says:

    THE DYLAN BOONDOGGLES: “Wayne is right when he says that LP candidates can get free media exposure if they are entertaining enough. I work in broadcasting and I am certain that the Producers at FOX Business don’t care about fundraising or political experience. They want characters that can hold the attention of an audience and names that we’ll recognize. That’s it.” (END)

    ...first off, great hillary stuff, brian miller!...(it’s fun to watch the bobo barf and wayne rot republicrat cheerleaders get ‘reality bitch-slapped’)..

    THE DYLAN, yes, and i believe most of ?your goddamned fool republicrats would be thrilled/entertained by some footage of LP candidates bob barf and wayne rot as the pivot-men in a circle-jerk…(it might attract even more ‘media exposure’ if they used some props.. maybe feather-dusters stuffed up their asses… ;o)

    ...folks, let’s get real!..ONE SIGNIFICANT PROBLEM FOR DECENT, KNOWLEDGEABLE ‘LIBERTARIANS’ APPEARS TO BE THE FOLLOWING:

    ...WHEREAS ‘POLITICS’ AMOUNTS/CAN AMOUNT TO “A COMPETITION OF IDEAS ABOUT ‘GOVERNMENT’‘..

    ...AND WHILE DECENT, KNOWLEDGEABLE ‘LIBERTARIANS’ REALISTICALLY UNDERSTAND THE ORIGIN, NATURE, ETC. OF ‘GOVERNMENT’ AS ‘FORCE,’ ‘AN AGENCY OF COERCION,’ ETC.,...REPUBLICRATS STRONGLY TEND TOWARDS BEING NUMB FUCKS WHO CAN’T/WON’T SEE THIS ‘LIBERTARIAN’ REALITY (ask 100 republicrats to define “government” and you’ll get 1OO different fucked-up responses)

    ..THEREFORE, WHEN YOU ARE TALKING ‘POLITICS’ (the competition of ideas about “GOVERNMENT”) WITH THESE STOOOOOOOOOOPID, BRAIN-LAUNDERED, REPUBLICRATS YOU ARE INEVITABLY TALKING PAST ONE ANOTHER AS YOU ARE TALKING ABOUT DIFFERENT THINGS..(remember republicrats, in order to honestly verbally ‘comm’unicate it seems you need to have a somewhat ‘comm’on understanding about what you are ‘comm’unicating)..

    ...btw, similarly, CLARK has a near-impossible challenge ‘comm’unicating with you money retards about ‘the economy,’ etc. ad nau$eam..because CLARK understands the origin, nature, etc.. of the most ubiquitous ‘economic’ element-the unit of account—(the federal reserve token or ‘dollar’ to you republicrat weasel-skinners) and you money dummies obviously don’t..

    (btw republicrats, i know you think you under$tand ‘the money’...just like the stoooooopid fuck republicrats think they understand ‘what government is!’)

    HINT: MAYBE CONCENTRATE ON THE BASICS..although this may bore some of you…remember…the MASSES of republicrats are worse than ignorant/brainwashed about things you and i take for granted..

    (that felt good..have a nice day!) ;o)

  91. Steven R Linnabary Says:

    Mr. Economist:

    Watch reel # 2. You don’t even have to watch it closely.

    The Senator CLEARLY calls for a nationalized health care, to be paid for with a NEW tax, the “Fairy Tax”.

    FWIW, the Senator may still be the best candidate for the LP, albeit one that I am much less enthused about.

    As The Dylan says above “But to hear a Libertarian talk about how without government, there would be no education, no health care, and we’d all be broke?! ”

    I’m old enough to remember when as a youngster on a farm in Appalachia, doctors were so plentiful that they actually made house calls. The very small town nearest the family farm was Buckeye Lake. There were several doctors there. Today, Buckeye Lake is much larger, but there are no doctors.

    More government is NOT the answer! Never was, never will be. The fact that the rest of the worlds governments provide health care to some of it’s residents is irrelevant. Your straw-man argument to lump the USA with South Africa not withstanding.

    I could go on, but I have a HempFest to be at in a half hour.

    PEACE
    Steve

  92. disinter Says:

    the thought of Hilary Clinton as the LP nomination fills me with horror.

    Unless that retard caucus has completely taken over the LP, they would never nominate her.

  93. disinter Says:

    Awwww, Steve Linnabary got his heart broken by someone who actually prioritizes education and healthcare.

    Letting the free market and private sector magically solve everything is like having your precocious 16-year old daughter go out with the captain of the football team and assume they’ll just hold hands.

    I mean, are you that rigid? That mental?

    Austrian Economist:

    Where exactly does an obstinate little slug like yourself even live?

    You are probably, through and through, the most negative person I’ve ever heard. And you must attribute that to your all-seeing wisdom, that few if any can appreciate.

    It’s really laughable the rock under which you drape your world outlook.

  94. disinter Says:

    Brian is absolutely correct that Fox News Channel has no viewers.

    Which is the only reason they gave them any air time in the first place.

  95. Brian Miller Says:

    I understand what you are saying when it comes to compromising on Libertarians, but your analogy makes no sense.

    It makes no sense because you don’t want it to make sense.

    Radicals can also state that, to them, Barr makes no sense, and it’s equally valid.

    Eventually, you’re going to have to learn to get along with people who agree with you to some extent, but who disagree with you on key policy areas. You’re going to have to learn to respect them and work with them as Libertarians, rather than blast them as Evil People Who Make No Sense™.

    THAT is the secret to creating a successful Libertarian Party, not the Scheme Of The Week That Will Magically Make Us Mainstream Through A Single Magic Bullet™.

    The whole “this candidate will make us mainstream” or “change our platform and the votes will come streaming in” trains of theory are both excellent examples of Libertarian Magical Delusion Syndrome. The sooner they’re dispatched with, the better.

  96. disinter Says:

    Eventually, you’re going to have to learn to get along with people who agree with you to some extent, but who disagree with you on key policy areas. You’re going to have to learn to respect them and work with them as Libertarians, rather than blast them as Evil People Who Make No Sense™.

    Boy does the pot ever call the kettle black… woah!

    THAT is the secret to creating a successful Libertarian Party

    If you are soo keen on this “secret”, then why is YOUR Outright Liber-Nazi group such a failure?

    The sooner they’re dispatched with, the better.

    So now the Outright Liber-tards want to purge those that they disagree with as well?

  97. Bill Wood Says:

    Average number of viewers in Jan. 6300 during the day, 15000 prime time. Wonder if FOX Business has gained since then.

  98. Ross Says:

    Steve - I’m not sure why Gravel didn’t mention this, but he supports a voucher system that sounds very similar to Root’s. You would still have the freedom to choose a private insurer, and the freedom to choose homeopathic medicines if you want. I think there just wasn’t enough time for Gravel to say everything he wanted.

  99. Conspiracy Theorist Says:

    Austrian Economist- You need to stop calling yourself that while preaching government intervention. You are giving the Austrian School a bad name. The market can provide the best services in the best way. Also, I really do not care how many industrialized nations have government run healthcare, we are not lemmings. Simply because it is policy elsewhere does not mean it is good policy. Those countries also have incredibly high tax rates. I would rather keep the money than have government take it away and give it back to me when I need it. Privatize everything and we can finally get rid of government.

    Dr. Gonzo- A federal democracy is a terrible idea for one to propose. It clearly shows Gravel has no understanding of mob rule and the dangers of a democracy. When half the nation can vote to do whatever it wants then disaster will ensue. The ability for the majority to wipe away any branch of government or even the constitution is an awful thing. It gives power to 51% of the nation to command 49%. If they followed Libertarian principals the Libertarian Party would be in charge. Furthermore, no Libertarian would allow such a concentration of power. Less power not more is the solution to government.

  100. Ross Says:

    What do we have now, Conspiracy Theorist? Mob rule by the top .0001%? How is that preferable to the National Initiative? And isn’t a Republic a much, much greater concentration of power than the National Initiative?

  101. Jaywin Says:

    Conspiracy Theorist stated about Mike Gravel’s National Initiative:

    “When half the nation can vote to do whatever it wants then disaster will ensue. The ability for the majority to wipe away any branch of government or even the constitution is an awful thing.”

    This is not even a remotely accurate representation of Senator Gravel’s proposal. Gravel’s idea of a National Initiative is not about replacing representative government nor overriding the Constitution. On the contrary, Mike Gravel has said on numerous occasions that he conceptualizes the National Initiative as a Fourth Branch of Government with the People as an added check in the System of Checks and Balances.

    The purpose of the National Initiative is to empower the people to to supplement representative government, not replace it. The Congress could present a bill for the people to vote on, or the people could engage in some type of signature gathering process to put a question on the ballot. That includes Libertarian proposals.

    And of course, you can’t pass a law that violates the Constitution with the people any more than you can in Congress. (Of course a lot of unconstitutional laws are passed by Congress, but they get away with it because the Supreme Court isn’t doing its job!)

    And Ross is right: certainly, laws passed by the people (within the context of a Constitionally-based society) is going to be closer to Libertarian principles than by the 435 oligarchs in Washington D.C who are bought and paid for by special interests.

  102. mdh Says:

    Any debate excluding Robert Milnes is illegitimate. :)

  103. WAR Says:

    GRAVELS A BAD MOTHERFUCKER BUT HE AIN’T SHIT TO ME!!

  104. woodmicrosof Says:

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