Category Archives: Election ’08

Andrew Sullivan, astroturfing Republicans and GOP hypocrisy

Andrew Sullivan gets it right, and wrong, at the very same time.  He scribed:

The remarkable thing about today’s partisan Republicans is their capacity to forget instantly and entirely anything that went on for the past eight years. And so suddenly we are rushing toward socialism, even though by far the biggest jumps in state power and debt occurred under a president they worshiped and worked hard to re-elect. There were no tea-parties to protest the $32 trillion Medicare prescription drug benefit. There was no Randian rumbling as Bush took over local schools. There was no defense of the Constitution as Bush and Cheney secretly suspended the fourth and first amendments. But put a moderate Democrat in office tackling a historic collapse in demand – and spending must be frozen! Reading the partisan right blogs, this ability to disappear the past is striking, and it helps explain base GOP loathing of Obama (even if the base is much smaller than it was).

Sullivan has noted what many of us have been complaining about since the Tea Party craze started. At this site (even as late as last night), and many others, we’ve been screaming about hypocritical, astroturfing, big-government Republicans.  So much so that it may be time to coin a new term: RINOturfing.

However, some of us have always been vocally and actively opposed to the very issues Sullivan raises. Ron Paul supporters, Libertarians, libertarians, paleoconservatives and even some (primarily) fiscal conservatives have been hitting the streets as well as the blogs for years.  That we are frequently ignored by publications like The Atlantic (Sullivan did cover Ron Paul fairly well) may have something to do with Sullivan’s apparent forgetfulness on the issue.

Essentially, Sullivan is disregarding publications like Reason and American Spectator, organizations like Cato (and Heritage on some days), candidates like Ron Paul and Bob Barr, personalities like John Stossel and Andrew Napolitano, parties like the Libertarian Party, elected officials like Ron Paul and Jeff Flake, conservative icons like Bruce Fein and Richard Viguerie, pretty much any self-described libertarian, ad infinitum.

A good definition of partisan is “a fervent, sometimes militant supporter or proponent of a party, cause, faction, person, or idea.”  It’s my opinion that all of the individuals and groups listed above indeed qualify.

There was plenty of  “Randian rumbling” and “defense of the Constitution” during the Bush years.  Perhaps Sullivan chose to ignore most of it.

In March, I wrote:

To be clear, I think it is cool that it appears that libertarians have some newfound friends on the small-government team.  However, it’s fair to color us a bit skeptical, as we are still licking our Republican-inflicted wounds.  It may take a bit of time for us to recover from the political PTSD we are suffering after fighting Republicans for the last eight years over government spending issues.

I still stand by these words.  It’s possible that April 15th may be the day that begins the healing process.  It could also be the day that the more cynical of us are proven correct.

UPDATE: I’d like to welcome our The Other McCain and The League of Ordinary Gentlemen readers.  I’d like to send a special medical marijuana smoking and lesbian loving shoutout to Moe Lane and our good friends at RedState.  I’m sort of curious about why the folks at RedState don’t approve of two women getting married to each other.  This sort of stuff is fantasy material for most red-blooded males that I know.

The Liberty Papers Welcomes Fellow “Militia Members” and Enemies of the State

Are you an enemy of the state? Chances are if you are reading The Liberty Papers, you are! According to a new report from the Missouri Information Analysis Center, “The Modern Militia Movement” authored by Governor Nixon and Attorney General Koster, signs that you may be a domestic terrorist or militia member include:

– You supported Ron Paul or 3rd party candidates such as Chuck Baldwin or Bob Barr in the 2008 election (Guilty!)

– You have “anti-government,” Campaign for Liberty, Gadsden Flag, and “libertarian” bumper stickers on his or her vehicle or possess other related literature (Guilty!)

-Anyone involved in The Campaign for Liberty (I’m sure that anyone associated with the Tea Parties or those in the “Going Galt” movement should also be considered a threat)

-People who frequently visit or participate in libertarian related blogs, discussion boards, or websites (Guilty!)

-Those who write about or talk about the coming economic collapse of the U.S. (Guilty!)

Basically, anyone who distrusts the state on any level could be profiled as a potential militia member, domestic terrorist, or enemy of the state.

I first learned of this report from the video clip below (Glenn Beck with Penn Jillete as his guest).

So what does Chuck Baldwin, Bob Barr, and Ron Paul think about being associated with domestic terrorism?

Chuck Baldwin’s response:

Can you imagine the fallout of this preposterous report had the names Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, and Maxine Waters been used instead of the names Ron Paul, Chuck Baldwin, and Bob Barr?

Accordingly, Ron Paul, Bob Barr, and I wrote a formal letter to the above-named Missouri officials demanding “that the following-described document be immediately removed from any and all websites associated with or maintained by the state of Missouri or any agency thereof, including the MIAC; that the said document no longer be circulated by the state of Missouri or any agency thereof or associated therewith; and that the state of Missouri repudiate its references to the three of us contained therein.”

Bob Barr seems to be content with the response he co-wrote with Baldwin and Paul, at least for now (I haven’t found any response so far from Barr other than the aforementioned letter)

Ron Paul’s Campaign for Liberty, however; is not taking this laying down and is circulating a Citizen’s Petition for Redress of Grievance

Both Ron Paul and Campaign for Liberty champion principles of freedom, peace, and prosperity. We believe that the Founder’s vision for America can be reclaimed through education and peaceful activism.

Simply supporting the Constitution does not make you worthy of a watch list; it makes you a Patriot.

I find it interesting that some (mostly Democrats) who when Bush was president said that dissent was patriotic now get nervous when anyone dares to question the policies of “The Messiah” a.k.a. “The Chosen One” a.k.a. President Obama. To be against this enlightened being is to commit heresy and obviously should be considered a wild-eyed, dangerous enemy of the state.

Well, believe it or not, not everyone believes that the direction Obama and the Democrat controlled federal government are in the best interest of those who value the rights of life, liberty, and property. The State has become an enemy to these very basic human rights.

Does this make me an enemy of the state? Well, I certainly wouldn’t describe myself as a “friend of the state.”

To those of you who have my name on a watch list and reading this, you can take that statement however you like.

Don’t Tread on Me!

Picking at Festering Libertarian Scabs

I honestly believe that Ron Paul is a decent guy and one of the most unique spokesmen for the libertarian movement out there.  However, I’m going to write something that one year ago would have filled the comment section below with hate messages from Dr. Paul’s supporters: Ron Paul does not walk on water and he puts his pants on one leg at a time, just like the rest of us.  Additionally, many of his supporters were among the rudest of people I’ve run into in my lifetime. I’ve also made some close and probably lifelong friends because of Paul’s presidential bid.

Countless times, I’ve been accused of attempting to destroy Ron Paul for pointing out some minor area where I disagree with him or his campaign.   When doing so, I was generally accused by his supporters either of being a neocon or of trying to sabotage his campaign.  Nothing could be further from the truth on either account.  It got so bad that I nearly quit supporting Paul — and I know quite a few other people who did drop out of the Ron Paul movement because of the crude behavior of some of his fans.

As a matter of fact, I was even heavily criticized by Paul’s supporters for paying, out of my own pocket, for a limousine to take Paul to the memorial service of Hollywood-producer-turned-politican Aaron Russo.  They thought it looked bad for a presidential candidate to appear to be living a jet-setting life of luxury.  I didn’t want a presidential candidate to show up at a Hollywood gig with both reporters and movie stars looking like a homeless man.  It was a plain, black limo.

There are differences between each of us in the freedom movement.  Some are pro-life, others are pro-choice.  Some are open borders and some are closed borders.  Some think talk of dismantling the Federal Reserve sounds bat-shit crazy.  Some think we should focus on the War on Drugs, others feel it is a losing issue. Some are 9/11 Truthers, or Obama Birthers, McCain Birthers, UFO Truthers, etc. — while others try to avoid these topics.  We have differences on both issues and approaches.

Like the rest of us, Ron Paul has some political warts.  He ran a campaign which many felt was poorly managed.  He didn’t handle the newsletter issue well.  Many people felt defrauded because they thought he was running to win and later found out it was an “educational” campaign.  Others feel that while Paul is an excellent congressman, he doesn’t have the executive skills to be commander-and-chief.  Paul has also managed to put a general libertarian message on national television like nothing I’ve seen in my lifetime.

He’s not the only libertarian-leaning Republican to have some political warts, though.  Barry Goldwater lost the 1964 presidential election because of them — and the Daisy ad.  I could run through a long list of faults of libertarian-leaning Congressmen, but won’t for the sake of brevity.  And political warts aren’t reserved solely for GOP candidates, either.

When Aaron Russo attempted to win the Libertarian Party presidential nomination, he said he didn’t wish to push for a radical drug legalization platform, preferring to focus on medical marijuana.   Then he went just as radical as Paul with respect to the Federal Reserve during his campaign and followed this up with America: Freedom to Fascism.

Bob Barr certainly didn’t appeal to the more radical elements of the libertarian movement and the cynical among them still thinks he’s a “neocon” who favors the Iraq War and Patriot Act, despite all that he’s done since leaving Congress to oppose these issues. However, Barr did handle racial allegations much more quickly and thoroughly than Paul did. Michael Badnarik was actually good on most of the issues from a constitutional perspective, but he seemed a bit kooky with respect to his refusal to obtain a driver’s license and for a few things he wrote in an pre-campaign publication.

The definition of neoconservative, for some libertarians, seems to be “anyone with whom I disagree.”

I’ve worked plenty of campaigns and disagreed with aspects of all of them.  Even the ones which won.  Especially the ones I managed.  Reasonable disagreement does not equate with being some sort of traitor.

Face it, folks, we are a bunch of individualists who are going to disagree — and disagree a lot. We will disagree on the issues and we will disagree on the candidates. However, the 2008 campaigns are over and perhaps it’s time to point our guns outwards, as opposed to aiming them at our closest allies.  By working together where we can and working apart where we must, we will accomplish a whole lot more than if we waste our time beating each other over the head about minor nuances.

It’s one thing to respectfully disagree or provide advice.  It’s another thing to reserve our most powerful weapons for our allies.  So long as we continue to fight each other, the oppressive power of the state will continue to increase.

UPDATE: By e-mail request, I’m linking to something I wrote some time ago dealing with the same general topic.

Joke of the Day

From RepublicansForObama.org, here’s one reason people were supposed to vote for Obama:

National Debt

The federal debt matters. We cannot saddle future taxpayers with having to service the debt we create with our irresponsible fiscal policies. Cutting the deficit will additionally decrease interest rates and increase private investment.

Suckers!!!!!!!!! — (not that McCain would have been much better).

Octomom: A Microcosm of Democrat and Republican Policies Realized

Much to my delight and surprise, the news of Nadya Suleman (a.k.a. Octomom) giving birth to 8 children in addition to her other 6 children she could ill afford to support has not been well received by a large portion of the American public. Octomom seemed to go into this undertaking with the idea that she wouldn’t actually have to support these children herself because giving birth to so many children would make her an instant celebrity complete with book deals, TV specials, movie offer and other such ways to cash in. With the popularity of the Duggar and Gosselin families with their fame and modest fortunes derived from reality shows and book deals, it’s not too difficult to see how Octomom might come to such a conclusion (and at the end of the day, with our celebrity worship culture, her calculation might pay off).

But something unique about Octomom didn’t quite have the same charm as the Duggars and the Goslins: the ability to support the children. For all of my personal objections (which I will not get into here) I have with a family such as the Duggars cranking out 18 babies in a span of 12 years, I certainly respect the dedication of the parents to support their family themselves. While Jon and Kate Gosselin had the help of fertility science which resulted in 8 children in 2 separate pregnancies, they went into each hoping for just one child and also support the family themselves. The Duggar and Gosselin children also benefit from a two parent household.

In contrast, Octomom, an unemployed single woman on welfare, intentionally impregnates herself with the help of in vitro fertilization resulting in 14 children without any concern of how she would support these children if her celebrity scheme wasn’t realized.

What’s not to like?

This Octomom attitude seems to be that she’s entitled to have as many children as she wants because it has always been “her dream” to have lots and lots of children. Where does she get this notion that because someone has “a dream” she is entitled to force others to help her realize this dream?

One doesn’t have to look far to realize that this entitlement mentality has been fostered by the Democratic Party at least since FDR’s New Deal. The Democrats constantly demand that the most productive members of society support the “less fortunate” less productive class to help realize their dreams. According to the 2008 Democratic Party Platform, everyone has a right to a job that pays a “living wage,” “affordable” healthcare, free daycare, free education, paid family leave, and an “affordable” home.

What the Left fails to realize is that there’s no such thing as a free lunch. There never has and there never will be. Every one of these policies to give “free” or “affordable” service to those who do not have the wherewithal to provide these “rights” for themselves have to come from someone because they are not without cost. Whether or not Octomom paid for the birth of her 8 children, there was still a significant cost to the medical staff that provided this service. But what does she care? If she doesn’t get the multi-million dollar TV show, she can always count on the taxpayer to bail her out. No longer a single mother, Octomom will be married to the State.

While I’m sure many on the Right would nod in agreement with much of what I have said so far, I would have to ask them: where have you been the last 8 years? The Republican President Bush with Republican majorities in the House and the Senate for the majority of that time presided over the greatest expansion of government since LBJ’s Great Society programs. Yes, it was the G.O.P. that gave us No Child Left Behind, Medicare Part D, and TARP just to name a few. This is the party of small government?

Yes, in the Chairmen’s Preamble of the 2008 Republican Party Platform there’s a very libertarian friendly line that the Republican Party has “Distrust of government’s interference in people’s lives” then the document proceeds to outline exactly how they plan to have the government interfere in people’s lives. As awful as the Democrat Platform is, at least I can say they are honest and consistent; more than what I can say about the Republicans.

When the going got tough, the Republicans abandoned free market principles and adopted the Democrat’s approach of bailing out businesses which were “too big to fail.” Now that the Democrats run the show, the Republicans hope we will forget* that they were the other party of big government.

With the Republicans failing to stand up for these principles, perhaps Octomom also believed she was “too big to fail” (both figuratively and literally).

Oh, wait…the Republicans have stayed true to one principle: the old “every sperm is sacred” (every sperm, egg, embryo) principle. When asked why she chose to implant every single one of the embryos Octomom explained that if she allowed them to expire, it would be like killing them. As she has learned from the Republicans, if ever a “life” is created existing even on a multi-cellular level, she has a duty to give these tiny clumps of cells a “chance to be born” or otherwise be accosted for “murdering the unborn.”

I can’t help but wonder whether or not the Octomom culture would exist at all if it were Libertarian policies in place over the last 70 or so years rather than Democrat and Republican policies. If such were the case, I am sure Suleman would have made certain she had the resources to take care of herself first and playing the odds of celebrity roulette would probably been too big of a risk. If the thought of the government bailing out financial institutions and the big three was considered politically unfeasible because government only stayed within its Constitutional limits, then there certainly wouldn’t be any political will to support “one woman’s dream.”

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