Some good news from this election

Posted on November 5th, 2008 by bile
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  • Ralph Nader, the Libertarian Party, the Constitution Party, and the Green Party will all substantially increase their raw vote totals over 2004.
  • Ron Paul received 2.2% in Montanna and 0.5% in Louisiana. Third place in both.
  • Ron Paul kept his districts House seat.
  • Few of the Ron Paul candidates won. Lamborn of Colorado 5th District and McClintock of California 4th District. It’s been questioned however whether Lamborn is an actual RP backed candidate.
  • Maine rejects sales taxes and medical claim fees to fund state health program.
  • South Dakota voted not to ban abortion.
  • Massachusetts decrims marijuana.
  • Michigan voted to allow medical marijuana.
  • Washington voted to allow for allowing some terminally ill adults to obtain lethal prescriptions.
  • Arizona shot down requiring revocation of business licenses of any employer who knowingly hires illegal aliens.
  • Colorado fails to define human life as beginning at fertilization.
  • Nebraska bans discrimination and preferential treatment by the State.

Let me include the bad:

  • Few of the Ron Paul candidates won. Lamborn of Colorado 5th District and McClintock of California 4th District. It’s been questioned however whether Lamborn is an actual RP backed candidate.
  • Colorado fails to ban discrimination and preferential treatment by the state.
  • Colorado fails to prohibit mandatory union membership and mandatory union dues.
  • Arizona bans same sex marriage.
  • Arizona shot down requiring that a majority of all registered voters approve any initiative with spending or tax increases.
  • Arkansas bans unmarried cohabitating couples from adopting or being foster parents.
  • California establishes the nation’s first comprehensive farm animal rights law.
  • California shot down expanding treatment programs for nonviolent drug offenders. (better then prison IMO)
  • California banned same sex marriage.
  • Florida bans same sex marriage.
  • Massachusetts overwhelmingly rejects getting rid of state income tax.
  • Massachusetts bans dog racing.
  • Montana provides government funded health insurance coverage for as many as 30,000 uninsured children.
  • North Dakota votes against reducing or eliminating income tax.
  • Oregon votes against requiring that teacher pay and job security be linked directly to classroom performance.

Who’s on the ballot?

Posted on October 29th, 2008 by bile
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This year, 23 presidential candidates are on the ballot in at least one state. That is the highest in U.S. history except for 1992, when there were also 23. Generally there are more such candidates in periods of great public unhappiness.

Here is a list, with the predominant party label for each, and the percentage of the voters that will see their names on the ballot:

Barack Obama, Democratic, 100.0%
John McCain, Republican, 100.0%
Bob Barr, Libertarian, 94.5%
Ralph Nader, independent, 85.2%
Cynthia McKinney, Green, 70.5%
Chuck Baldwin, Constitution, 59.8%
Gloria La Riva, Socialism and Liberation, 26.8%
Roger Calero or his stand-in James Harris, Socialist Workers, 25.0%
Brian Moore, Socialist, 21.5%
Alan Keyes, America’s Independent Party, 18.1%
Charles Jay, Boston Tea, 10.0%
Gene Amondson, Prohibition, 9.6%
Thomas Robert Stevens, Objectivist, 8.0%
Richard Duncan, independent, 4.6%
John Joseph Polachek, New, 4.3%
Jeffrey Boss, Vote Here, 3.0%
Jeffrey Wamboldt, We the People, 2.5%
Ron Paul, Taxpayers/Constitution, 2.0%
Jonathan E. Allen, HeartQuake ‘08, 1.7%
Bradford Lyttle, U.S. Pacifist, 1.7%
Frank McEnulty, unaffiliated, 1.7%
Ted Weill, Reform, .9%
George Phillies, Libertarian, .6%

Poor George Phillies at the bottom. I would vote for him or Paul if available in New Jersey. Sadly they are not.

For those who missed it: the Nader / Baldwin presidential debate

Posted on October 26th, 2008 by bile
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Russia Today’s coverage

Cato at Liberty: A Libertarian Dilemma

Posted on October 13th, 2008 by bile
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In the November issue of Liberty magazine I write about one factor that I think reduces the political impact of libertarian-leaning voters: the fact that they’re all over the map about which party or faction represents the lesser of the evils:

One reason why libertarians underperform politically is that they are politically split, not just between radicals and incrementalists, as can happen in any political movement, but also among various political movements — while being too small to influence any of them very much.

It seems to me that libertarians come in several political groupings:

(1) Those who care primarily about free markets and thus support conservative Republicans. Given the candidates on offer, that means helping to move the GOP to the right on social issues (and war and civil liberties) as well as on economic issues. This group would include the Club for Growth, Republican “Leave Us Alone” activist Grover Norquist, many donors to free-market thinktanks, and probably most libertarian-leaning politically active people.

(2) Those who want to make the GOP more socially tolerant and thus support moderate Republicans, which effectively means Republicans who aren’t very free-market. This would include Log Cabin Republicans, pro-choice Republicans, and lots of Wall Street and Silicon Valley businesspeople.

(3) Those who think the GOP is irredeemably bad on social issues and civil liberties and thus support Democrats. This would again include some Silicon Valley businessmen who are pro-entrepreneurship and fiscally conservative but just can’t support a party that is opposed to abortion rights and gay rights. A dramatic example is Tim Gill, the founder of Quark, who calls himself a libertarian but has contributed millions of dollars to Democrats because of Republican opposition to gay rights. There are also broadly libertarian people involved in the ACLU, the drug-reform movement, and other civil libertarian causes.

(4) Those who support the Libertarian Party. They don’t get many votes, but they include a large percentage of libertarian activists.

If only some candidate or movement could bring them all together.

There was/is one. His name is Ron Paul and the movement is now called the Campaign for Liberty. Too bad Cato and Reason and many other libertarians bashed the most libertarian candidate ever to have a real possibility of being nominated to a major party. Making a deal breaker things which happened decades ago and while not always thoroughly explained away for some should have been no more harmful to the campaign than anyone else’s skeletons.

At Paul’s rallies you’d find Democrats and Greens, independents, Republicans and Constitutionalists, voluntarists and anarchists. He has/had broad support. While the support of those described above may not have won Paul the nomination it would have put him far closer. Boaz has only those nitpickers to blame.

Ron Paul endorses Chuck Baldwin for President

Posted on September 22nd, 2008 by bile
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The press conference at the National Press Club had a precise purpose.  It was to expose, to as many people as possible, the gross deception of our presidential election process.  It is controlled by the powerful elite to make sure that neither candidate of the two major parties will challenge the status quo.  There is no real choice between the two major parties and their nominees, only the rhetoric varies.  The amazingly long campaign is designed to make sure the real issues are ignored.  The quotes I used at the press conference from insider Carroll Quigley and the League of Women voters strongly support this contention.

Calling together candidates from the liberal, conservative, libertarian and progressive constituencies, who are all opposed to this rigged process, was designed to alert the American people to the uselessness of continuing to support a process that a claims that one’s only choice is to choose the lesser of two evils and reject a principle vote that might challenge the status quo as a wasted vote.

In both political education and organization, coalitions are worthwhile and necessary to have an impact.  “Talking to the choir” alone achieves little.  I have always approached political and economic education with a “missionary” zeal by inviting any group in on issues we agree upon.

This opens the door to legitimate discourse with the hope of winning new converts to the cause of liberty.  This strategy led to the press conference with the four candidates agreeing to the four principles we believe are crucial in challenging the political system that has evolved over many years in this country.

This unique press conference, despite the surprising, late complication from the Libertarian Party Presidential Candidate, hopefully will prove to be historically significant.

Read More…

‘We Agree’

Posted on September 10th, 2008 by bile
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The following is a statement presented Wednesday, September 10, at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. It was presented to the media by Rep. Ron Paul, former Republican presidential candidate, joined by Cynthia McKinney, Green Party presidential candidate, Chuck Baldwin, Constitution Party presidential candidate, and Ralph Nader, Independent presidential candidate. At a later press conference, Bob Barr, the Libertarian Party presidential candidate, said he also agreed with the statement (see posting below).

We Agree

Foreign Policy: The Iraq War must end as quickly as possible with removal of all our soldiers from the region. We must initiate the return of our soldiers from around the world, including Korea, Japan, Europe and the entire Middle East. We must cease the war propaganda, threats of a blockade and plans for attacks on Iran, nor should we reignite the cold war with Russia over Georgia. We must be willing to talk to all countries and offer friendship and trade and travel to all who are willing. We must take off the table the threat of a nuclear first strike against all nations.

Privacy: We must protect the privacy and civil liberties of all persons under US jurisdiction. We must repeal or radically change the Patriot Act, the Military Commissions Act, and the FISA legislation. We must reject the notion and practice of torture, eliminations of habeas corpus, secret tribunals, and secret prisons. We must deny immunity for corporations that spy willingly on the people for the benefit of the government. We must reject the unitary presidency, the illegal use of signing statements and excessive use of executive orders.

The National Debt: We believe that there should be no increase in the national debt. The burden of debt placed on the next generation is unjust and already threatening our economy and the value of our dollar. We must pay our bills as we go along and not unfairly place this burden on a future generation.

The Federal Reserve: We seek a thorough investigation, evaluation and audit of the Federal Reserve System and its cozy relationships with the banking, corporate, and other financial institutions. The arbitrary power to create money and credit out of thin air behind closed doors for the benefit of commercial interests must be ended. There should be no taxpayer bailouts of corporations and no corporate subsidies. Corporations should be aggressively prosecuted for their crimes and frauds.

I’ve been wanting 3rd parties to join up on common threads for years. This is a good start. I just hope they continue to work together and keep these issues raised.