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“Economic power is exercised by means of a positive, by offering men a reward, an incentive, a payment, a value; political power is exercised by means of a negative, by the threat of punishment, injury, imprisonment, destruction. The businessman's tool is values; the bureaucrat's tool is fear.”     Ayn Rand

May 6, 2011

Republicans Continue Dissing Libertarians, Then Want Us To Vote For Them

by Doug Mataconis

Brian Doherty notes that The Washington Examiner’s Byron York seems to have had a pair of ideological blinders on when he watched last night’s Republican debate:

Byron York, in the game of reporting about right-wing and Republican politics for a very long time, delivers a bravura performance of ignoring what’s in front of his own eyes with this nearly 2,000 word account of last night’s GOP debate that pretty much pretends Ron Paul and Gary Johnson weren’t even there.

York literally mentions that Paul was there–and never mentions yesterday’s million-dollar man again. Johnson gets cred for sprinting on the stage, where apparently from York’s account he then fell through a trap door and never added anything to the very, very fascinating set of fresh ideas delivered by those other three guys, I’ve forgotten their names.

Expect to have to see a lot more of this transparently pathetic pretending that Paul and Johnson don’t exist

York’s not alone. A listener to Rush Limbaugh’s show today would’ve been led to think that the only people at last night’s debate were Herman Cain, Tim Pawlenty, and Rick Santorum, because the great “El Rushbo” didn’t even talk about Johnson or Paul (yea, I know, I shouldn’t be listening). And a review of many of the prominent conservative blogs today shows either the same “memory holing” of Paul and Johnson, or coverage that consists of nothing but derision of them and their supporters.

To which I ask a simple question — if conservative Republicans want to convince libertarian-oriented folks to be allied with them, wouldn’t it be better to actually treat them and their ideas with respect? I’ve seen none of it, and I’m tempted to act accordingly.

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  1. Hardly surprising. I’m not a Republican. Never have been, never will be.

    Unlike a good chunk of libertarians, I don’t consider the GOP to be my party, nor my default party nor the party of last resort.

    Republicans are alien to me. That’s not to say I don’t like to see libertarians sneak in there and try to win a nomination. I just don’t expect much from it. Republicans are not libertarians and national politics shows that quite well. Sure, some have success on local levels and even state level running as a Republican but that’s where it stops. Up to that level, a libertarian can wing it in Republican politics but once eyes go on DC, it’s much harder and nearly impossible outside of a few congressional seats. Rand Paul’s Senate victory still strikes me as somewhat of a fluke.

    Comment by John V — May 6, 2011 @ 1:32 pm
  2. And don’t count Ron Paul supporters to be supportive of either your fair-weather coverage of him, or the RLC (regardless of the blanket “I’m a (l)ibertarian and not a (L)ibertarian bullshit all the contributors spout here).

    With frenemies like David Nalle taking an RLC chair, and the general trap door ‘a la’ 2008 from the Llibertarian network, you need to simply stick with Gary Johnson and leave it at that.

    And truth be told, I wouldn’t be crestfallen if GJ shot to stardom in the 2012 and actually becomes a legitimate Presidential contender. I wouldn’t try to sniff out and hold on to any pebble of impropriety in his past if he had that kind of success. I would actually hope he fells the corporate GOP contenders, instead of doing my best to character-assassinate him, unlike the Llibertarians.

    I was honestly hoping Ron Paul would bow out of this run just so all the stupid bullshit wouldn’t start up yet again. But alas, I have to hope for the best… again.

    Comment by procopius — May 6, 2011 @ 2:11 pm
  3. Who ever said that Republicans want libertarian votes? They tend to think we are leftists.

    Comment by darjen — May 6, 2011 @ 4:52 pm
  4. If anything, both men should pool their weight together, at least during the debate season, to counter-balance the corporate GOP annointed runners that are about to enter the field and stomp on any libertarian-esque dream of anything.

    Childish, nuance-disabled bloggers like Mataconis and Nalle can’t grasp that concept. Look at Mataconis already. He sucked on the racist newsletter teat and it wasn’t even 2 weeks until debate time. This is not a grown man, folks. They and child-men, and they are not alone here.

    Back in reality, the two men, without the apparatus of the proper RLC can run interference and mutual support throughout the debate season. It’s pretty important that adults understand this.

    Comment by procopius — May 6, 2011 @ 5:27 pm
  5. Procopius, you accusing someone of being nuance-disabled has to be one of the funniest examples of someone squinting past the beam in his eye to glare at his neighbor’s mote on this here website.

    Comment by tarran — May 12, 2011 @ 6:21 pm
  6. I don’t know if you were drunk or high at the time of your response, tarran, but your nonsensical attempt to insult me and/or defend your friend is sad, to say the best.

    Comment by procopius — May 13, 2011 @ 1:50 pm
  7. [...] procopius: I don’t know if you were drunk or high at the time of your response, tarran, but your nonsensical… [...]

    Pingback by The Liberty Papers »Blog Archive » Hugh Hewitt: RNC Should “Exile” Herman Cain, Gary Johnson, and Ron Paul from Future Debates — May 14, 2011 @ 6:35 pm
  8. [...] reading Doug Mataconis’ recent post about pundits on the Right ignoring the presence of Ron Paul and Gary Johnson in the first [...]

    Pingback by Hugh Hewitt: RNC Should “Exile” Herman Cain, Gary Johnson, and Ron Paul from Future Debates « Pesky Emotional Republican — May 14, 2011 @ 8:47 pm
  9. I argued it in 2008 and I will argue it again, if this total disrepect for Paul, Johnson and the libertarian/liberty wing of the GOP continues, it it time to pull the plug on the GOP and we all move to a third party, whether the LP or a new entity. The GOP would be destroyed nationally and/or simple evolve into a neocon/theocrat party that can advocate a return of The Crusades!

    Comment by Cato — May 17, 2011 @ 11:05 am

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