Bob Barr on Bloomberg

Part I:

Here is Part II and Part III.

H/T to LibertyMaven.

25 Responses to “Bob Barr on Bloomberg”

  1. David Tomlin Says:

    ‘I’m not a latecomer to liberty.’

    Wow. Barr says this in answer to a question about his voting record. He is saying that his voting record reflects his idea of what it means to be pro-liberty.

    Those who have been claiming that Barr has had a true change of heart now stand contradicted by the man himself.

  2. Free2Smooze Says:

    Wow! Great interview!

    Dave, you’re picking nat sh*t out of pepper. I’m a 100/100 on the Nolan Chart and I still support our candidate.

    This tact by the bitter radicals to pick apart every word that Barr says (or ever has said) is doing more to turn me off of my previous sympathies for the purist wing of the party than anything th Barr campaign has done or said.

    I don’t understand what this childish petulance is supposed to prove or accomplish or whom they think they’re preaching to.

    I (stupidly) supported going in to Iraq before the invasion. Contradiction of all of my professed beliefs, yes.

    Do I consider myself a “newcomer” to liberty because I was wrong and needed time to reflect and then admit I was wrong? No, but if people like David and Disinter were the only contacts I had with the LP, I would quickly conclude that I am not welcome in this party.

    I know that people like this need to keep the party small in order for them to feel important, but we need a vehicle for liberty NOW!

    The train is leaving the station, Dave. Buckle in or get off. Don’t stand in the door disparaging the folks that want to go somewhere.

  3. FormerLPMember Says:

    I doubt that half of Barr’s supporters have even looked at his voting record, it is definatley not pro-liberty:
    Or what any of these laws did to, for or against their family, friends, neighbors or coworkers.
    Compare Barr’s voting record to Republican Ron Paul by finding the same bills

  4. FormerLPMember Says:

    Free2Smooze, Liberty is real simple to understand, but for anyone who needs a short refresher course

  5. Stefan Says:

    David: Does one have to be a member of the LP to be pro-liberty?

    Barr is indeed no newcomer to liberty. He has noted his influence of Ayn Rand in terms of limited government etc. It should also be noted that as student at UCLA he joined the Young Democrats for America (1967) and he rallied against the Vietnam War! This is often forgotten by LP and other critics of Barr. So Barr was for the non-interventionist policy.

    Since when is his “limited government, individual economic freedom, and the free enterprise system” voting record not libertarian? His strong support of the second Amendment is hardcore libertarian! Of course he does not have the perfect libertarian voting record as Ron Paul, but then again no one in congress has it. (Also with 500 USD overblown donation from Don Black, Paul has the 100% consequent principled understanding of the 1st Amendment).
    Barr was originally against he Patriot (also its predecessor Act), and only voted for it for strategic reasons: sunset clauses and under the understanding that it would not be expanded. He has a 5 year history now of opposing the Patriot Act and working to get it repealed. In that he has been much more vocal and effective than many longyear LP members, including some of the LP candidates.

  6. Stefan Says:

    Also think of it, a conservative-libertarian like Paul or Barr is much more likely to squash the “libertine” perception of the Lp, that has proven to be a stumbling block for the LP in the past, than a “liberal/left-wing libertarian.

  7. David Tomlin Says:

    The Bloomberg interview is a little better than the one with Beck.

    In both interviews Barr deserves credit for speaking out strongly against illegal domestic spying, trashing of habeas ccrpus, and McCain-Feingold.

    When the Bloomberg interviewer pressed Barr on other ways of restricting campaign finance, Barr missed a great opportunity to present the libertarian perspective on this issue. The more the government intervenes in the economy, the greater the incentives to try to influence. Restricting campaign finance approaches the question from the wrong end.

    The worst thing about the Bloomberg interview is Barr’s answer on Iraq. In other venues he has been strong on the issue, but here he wobbled and sounded like a Democrat. He doesn’t much like having troops in Iraq, so hell think about maybe taking some out some day, when he gets around to feeling like it, but no promises, no timetables, it would be ‘irresponsible to telegraph’.

  8. David Tomlin Says:

    I am not a member or a former member of the Libertarian Party, nor am I a 100% pure ZAP libertarian. I have not claimed to be any of those things.

    No one should hold anything I say against any other person or group. I speak for no one but myself.

  9. Robert Capozzi Says:

    Barr’s a big-leaguer. He’s always “on.”

    Does he, and did he, take positions I personally disagree with? Sure.

    But is it obvious that he takes the message of liberty in the political realm to a whole ‘nother level? Yep, in spades.

  10. Eric Dondero Says:


    Do you regret your decision to turn against the War in Iraq, now that we’ve won?

    You seem like kind of a loser on this issue. You turned away from the War in Iraq, and now we’ve won a fantastic victory there, killing Saddam, Uday & Qusay, Zarcawi, and liberating 35 million people from Dictatorial oppression.

    Even the ultra-liberal NY Times is admitting in the last few days, that the Surge has been a suprising success, and the War is virtually over.

    Kind of feels a bit funny for ya now, ‘eh?

  11. Eric Dondero Says:

    Stefan, the “libertine” image of the LP, can be a plus with the college campus crowd.

    The problem with the image of the LP is that it’s seen as being too “Anti-War.” I run into this on a daily basis with Veterans, and Military Family members. They like libertarian economic policies, the Vets, and most especially the Active Duty young guys like libertarian policies on civil liberties issues like drug legalization, pro-guns, anti-smoking laws, and anti-seat belt laws. But then comes the bombshell:

    “I would vote for you Libertarian guys, but you’re soft on Terrorism…”

    The LP needs to figure out a way to dispell that image, and appear to be more Pro-Military, and more Pro-War on Terrorism. Libertarians are losing a huge block of voters because of it:

    Fiscally Conservative/Socially Tolerant, yet Pro-Defense.

  12. Susan Hogarth Says:

    It should also be noted that as student at UCLA he joined the Young Democrats for America (1967) and he rallied against the Vietnam War! This is often forgotten by LP and other critics of Barr. So Barr was for the non-interventionist policy.

    You mean until he voted to invade and occupy Iraq?

    Look, I can accept and rejoice in the fact that Barr is now Libertarian. I can’t accept his reinvention as having always been pro-liberty. By trying to paint his horrid congressional record as pro-liberty, he mocks the very concept.

  13. charlie Says:

    Dondero: “Even the ultra-liberal NY Times is admitting in the last few days, that the Surge has been a suprising success, and the War is virtually over.”

    Dude, keep the laughs coming.

    1- Iraq has 28 million people, not 35. At least four million of those Iraqis are now refugees, and several hundred thousand are dead thanks to the U.S.’s “liberation.”
    2- Iraqi civilians continue to be blown up every day and there is massive resistance to the Bush administration’s attempts to continue the occupation. 3- The average Iraqi thinks it’s legitimate to kill American troops, and the majority view the American presence as the chief cause of instability.

    But since the war is “virtually over”, does that mean the troops can come home now?

    PS —The fact that Eric Dondero supports the Barr/Root ticket so heartily should be a wakeup call to anyone who cares about liberty and peace. Well, that and the fact that Barr’s position on Iraq is vaguer than that of Hillary Clinton, he thinks “only a fool” would set a timetable to withdraw from Iraq, and he thinks U.S. troops should “absolutely not” be brought home from the 130 countries around the world they are currently stationed at…

  14. Eric Dondero Says:

    Dude, wake up. All your facts are wrong.

    Want complete evidence of the stunning success of the War in Iraq in the last few weeks?

    Mostly silence from the ultra-liberal “Mainstream” Media on the War.

    Oh, and US Troop deaths at an all-time low.

    Hey, just a guess, but might you be a non-Veteran? Perhaps a Military hater to boot?

  15. Eric Dondero Says:

    Hey Charlie, reading a bit too much of the HuffPost and DailyKos there?

    Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, “Ten Million Iraqi War Deaths due to the Iraqi invasion by the Evil United States.”

    Wah, wah, wah, wah, wah.

    We’ve heard it all before on all the America-hating Leftwing Blogs.

    And remember this Golden Oldie:

    “If America invades Afghanistan to remove the Taliban and hunt down Al Qaeda, the Military will need over 100,000 body bags for all the dead Soldiers and Marines.”

  16. Eric Dondero Says:

    Hah! “Occupy Iraq” says Susan Hogarth, like a typical Lefty, not a Libertarian.

    If we’re “Occupying Iraq,” than why is it that the Iraqis are begging us to stay? Poll after poll by Gallup and Pew and other Research firms done in Iraq suggest an overwhelming majority of Iraqis want US Troops to stay for the foreseeable future.

    So, the citizens AND the political leaders of the “Occupied” country don’t want us to leave. That sure is a strange way to define an “Occupying Force.”

  17. Eric Dondero Says:

    Charlie, you call Barr’s position on Iraq “vague.”

    Are you aware that there’s potentially millions of Ross Perot voters out there that the Barr campaign could tap into? Perot got 20 million votes in 19992.

    What are Perot voters like?

    They are generall fiscally conservative budget hawks, who are more moderate on social issues, yet Patriotic on the Military and very supportive of Military Veterans.

    Just imagine Bob Barr taking a Leftist line on foreign policy: “The War in Iraq is a huge failure, all of the efforts of our brave men in Uniform have been in vain, let’s immediate pull-out all our Troops, surrender to Al Qaeda, and admit defeat.”

    Now, just how do you think that would go over with Perot type voters, or other blue collar folks who may lean libertarian on issues like gun rights, property rights and tax cuts, and might be tempted to vote for Barr/Root?

    I’ll tell you how: Like a led balloon.

    But then again, I guess you’d rather Barr reach out to the tiny faction of about 200,000 or so, Lefty Anarchist America-haters, right?

  18. Robert Capozzi Says:

    Barr, like most people, has evolved. It strikes me that his come from has long been pro-liberty, as he defined it then.

  19. Joe Buchman Says:

    I think it’s important to realize no one who is not Libertarian today, is likely to become a Libertarian overnight. It’s a long educational process for most former Republicans and Democrats. Not a light-bulb event.

    Barr seems to have been on that process during his career in Congress, and while he’s not likely to get an A on Ron Paul’s final exam yet, I like this guy. Rather than focus on and condemn those areas where, say, he still has more to learn; I’m excited that he’s able to bring so much of the B+ good answers into the mainstream media.

    So far, he’s a great candidate for us. IMO.

    (And I’m hoping he’ll continue to get better. Maybe reread Mary’s books. Have a long dinner with Steve Kubby. Look more closely at how Ron Paul raised as much money as he has and look at his Google and Youtube videos from 1998).

    Again, no one is likely to fully become libertarian overnight. I agree that part of the LP’s mission IS education (and not just electing candidates); and part of education that works is not just pounding learners on the wrong answers—or we risk never converting (fully educating) anyone.



  20. Free2Smooze Says:

    I was called a loser by Eric Dondero. I will wear it like a badge.

  21. Kelly Parker Says:

    The invasion of Iraq was the wrong thing to do. There was simply no justification for it. The WMD’s did not exist and Iraq was no direct threat to us.
    It’s true that Hussein was a dictator and a murderer, but if that is our standard there are a half dozen countries I can think of off the top of my head that should have been invaded. We are not the policemen of the world. We do not own the world. Just because we have the ability to invade any country on earth doesn’t mean we have the right to. As far as the surge goes, yes, it has worked because it’s a more sound strategy militarily. But finding a better way to do the wrong thing doesn’t make it right.

  22. RockHoward Says:

    I have just added another goal to my life’s ambitions. It is simply to out live Dondero so that I can enjoy the intertubes for a spell without having to wade through his mindless blather.

  23. Free2Smooze Says:

    “I have just added another goal to my life’s ambitions. It is simply to out live Dondero so that I can enjoy the intertubes for a spell without having to wade through his mindless blather.”

    From your lips to God’s ears, RockHoward

  24. Eric Dondero Says:

    The justification for the invasion of Iraq was the killing of 37 US sailors on the USS Starke in 1987 when Saddam’s henchmen lobbed that missile at our vessel.

    Further justification was when his forces invaded our ally in Kuwait and brutally murdered, raped and tortured hundres of thousands of Kuwaitis.

    Further justification was when he repeatedly ignored our no fly zones and shot at our jet fighters.

    Further justification was when he supported Palestinian Terrorists and offered to fund Hamas and other Terrorist groups.

    Further justification was when he gassed an estimated Two Hundred Thousand Kurds.

    He didn’t have any WMD you say? Really?

    I suggest you read Georges Sayda’s book Saddam’s Secrets. Sayda was Saddam’s Top Air Force General, and outlines in the book precisely what happened to all the WMD. They were shipped off to Syria days before the War began in 2003. No great mystery.

    But of course, the liberal media ignores the story.

  25. David Tomlin Says:

    Barr missed another opportunity when he was asked about Ahmadinejad. He could have pointed out that Ahmadinejad is not the leader of Iran, that anyone who follows these matters closely knows he isn’t, and that McCain either has lied about this or is badly misinformed.

    There was a brief media flap about McCain’s false claims. Barr might have revived it. A clip of Barr criticizing McCain on this point might even have made the cable news.

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