[ca-liberty] Las Vegas Sun on what led LP presidential hopeful Wayne Allyn Root to leave the GOP

Brian,

  If I appear to be singling out Wayne Allyn Root for undue criticism, it is partly an attempt to balance out the incessant cheerleading of Bruce Cohen. But my belief that the LP should be guided by a strong libertarian ideology is hardly new or "sudden." I have long been saying that while the Libertarian Party should welcome supporters with a wide range of views and backgrounds, we should not select people to leadership, spokesperson, and decision-making roles within the party whose libertarian credentials are dubious. I said this last year when Bob Barr was given a seat on the Libertarian National Committee, and as far back as the '90s when the national LP seemed to be taking insufficiently principled stances.

  As you may be aware, I also see a need for us to focus more on appealing to people's sense of compassion and social justice, and less to their self-interest. Having a candidate for the LP's top job who's identified as a "millionaire Republican" (while that is somewhat beyond Root's control, I note that he is still using the website MillionaireRepublican.com as a campaign site to run for president), and who openly identifies an economic issue that threatened to affect his pocketbook as his primary impetus for switching parties, sends precisely the wrong message.

  I would love to see Root become more educated about libertarianism, spend some time working in the trenches for liberty, and develop more compassion for those who are oppressed the most by government (it's not the super-wealthy, as he seems to think), as well as a more humble approach more befitting someone seeking to become a public servant. In time he could become a good Libertarian candidate. He is obviously not without skills and talents. But right now I feel pretty strongly that he's the wrong candidate to represent our party on the national stage.

Love & Liberty,
        <<< starchild >>>

Starchild wrote:

Brian,

If I appear to be singling out Wayne Allyn Root for undue criticism,
it is partly an attempt to balance out the incessant cheerleading of
Bruce Cohen.

Not to mention Eric Dondero!!
BLEAH....

Starchild wrote:

I also see a need for us to focus more on appealing to people's sense

of compassion and social justice, and less to their self-interest. <SC

Yes, I'm worried both by Root's focus on gambling and Kubby's focus on
marijuana. (Kubby says <http://www.kubby2008.com/node/9> hemp seed oil is
important for U.S. "energy independence". I'm not making this up.)

[...] a more humble approach more befitting someone seeking to become a

public servant. <SC

I'm surprised to hear "public servant" coming from someone who reminds us
e.g. that the U.S. government (and even America) is not "us", and that we
should call the LP an "alternative" party not a "third" party. As I've said
in my campaign FAQ <http://marketliberal.org/FAQ.html#PublicService> since
2004:

What is your record of public service?

I do not believe that holding office is automatically "public service". As
the potential guarantor of freedom, government is indeed capable of
facilitating enormous good. But as the traditional usurper of freedom,
government has caused grotesque amounts of suffering in human history, and
nearly all of it has been inflicted by officials who believed they were
doing "public service". Anyone of good conscience who seeks or holds
government office needs to keep firmly in mind that governments more easily
do harm than good, and that merely holding government office doesn't
automatically make one's actions a "public service". Voters should be
extremely wary of office-seekers who view political power -- the power to
coerce using lethal armed force -- as just a slightly different form of
altruistic community involvement

Friends:

I'll just be happy if we get a candidate who speaks in an educated and informed way about most of the key campaign issues facing Americans: immigration; the economy; taxes; the war in Iraq; deficit spending; equal treatment of citizens under the law; civil liberties and the rule of law; Constitutional supremacy; and the size/scope of government.

I have my ideas about who the best candidate is for the job. . . They'll be public quite soon, and hopefully will get consideration!

Cheers,

Brian
Outright Libertarians, California Chair

Brian Holtz <brian@...> wrote:
Starchild wrote:
    > I also see a need for us to focus more on appealing to people's sense of compassion and social justice, and less to their self-interest. <SC
Yes, I'm worried both by Root's focus on gambling and Kubby's focus on marijuana. (Kubby says hemp seed oil is important for U.S. "energy independence". I'm not making this up.)
    > [...] a more humble approach more befitting someone seeking to become a public servant. <SC
I'm surprised to hear "public servant" coming from someone who reminds us e.g. that the U.S. government (and even America) is not "us", and that we should call the LP an "alternative" party not a "third" party. As I've said in my campaign FAQ since 2004:
What is your record of public service? I do not believe that holding office is automatically "public service". As the potential guarantor of freedom, government is indeed capable of facilitating enormous good. But as the traditional usurper of freedom, government has caused grotesque amounts of suffering in human history, and nearly all of it has been inflicted by officials who believed they were doing "public service". Anyone of good conscience who seeks or holds government office needs to keep firmly in mind that governments more easily do harm than good, and that merely holding government office doesn't automatically make one's actions a "public service". Voters should be extremely wary of office-seekers who view political power -- the power to coerce using lethal armed force -- as just a slightly different form of altruistic community involvement

Brian,

  I understand your surprise, and agree with your critique of the concept of "public service" as not just another altruistic form of community involvement like mentoring children or feeding the homeless via a non-profit. Indeed I do have mixed feelings about the term -- I have for instance started trying to cultivate the habit of referring to having "worked for the U.S. government's military" rather than "served."

  But at the same time, the traditional concept of politicians and bureaucrats being "public servants" remains very useful for helping keep them in check. I like to remind people that politicians and bureaucrats are supposed to be the servants of ordinary people, not their masters. This helps make the case that they should be paid *less* than people doing similar work in the non-government sector, not more, and that the citizenry, not the government, should be the repository of power in each jurisdiction.

  In terms of people running for office, the concept of "public service" underlines the fact that arrogance is not an appropriate or desirable attribute in a candidate for servant. We should be wary of giving positions that unfortunately at present involve wielding a considerable amount of power, to those who seem to want them too badly or appear to have oversized egos. Such people are more likely to succumb to the temptations of power than those who run for office somewhat reluctantly and with a more modest view of their own importance (or lack thereof).

Love & Liberty,
        <<< starchild >>>