Putting forth concerns effectively / keeping bigots out of the LP

LOL -- Brian Miller, Inquisitor General of the Libertarian Party of San Francisco.

I'll wear my harness (spiked, preferably) and stare menacingly at the timid and intimidated lines of new LP voters who file past me, trembling with trepidation. :wink:

Actually, I don't think this is too difficult. The LP needs to explain its similarities *and* its differences to recruit the "right" Ron Paul supporters -- just like we do with Democrats, etc.

In the case of Ron Paul, we share his views on small government, the Iraq War, and ending the role of the federal government in the drug war. We don't share his views on race, religion, sexual orientation, immigration, support for state-level drug wars, and unlimited power for state governments that is constitutionally elevated above that of the individual. If the former appeals to you and you agree with us on most of the latter, come on in. If not, and you're a Ron Paul supporter because you like what his newsletters say about the Mexican Menace, the NAFTA Superhighway, the Trilateral Commission, and restoring "states' rights" to imprison "sodomites," we're not your cup of tea.

Incidentally, with the Kucinich campaign flaming out, there's an opportunity to recruit Kucinich supporters who agree with us as well. It's a similar process -- we share Kucinich's positions on many social issues, including getting government out of the business of punishing unpopular minorities, ending the war on drugs, ending the war in Iraq, and ending the war on immigration. However, if you're a Kucinich supporter because you like the idea of a maximum wage, the abolition of private property, or a mandatory government monopoly takeover of health care, you're probably best off elsewhere.

As for the "rhetoric" commentary, it's not my responsibility to accept the blame for people who chose to deify a politician and ignore his very real flaws. My insistence on the point came because I did my homework on Ron Paul when he announced his candidacy rather than "going with the crowd." I was disappointed that so many Libertarians decided to go with a collectivist "don't ask questions and ignore the evidence" approach to his candidacy, but as far as I'm concerned, that's water under the bridge. The important thing now is to ensure that the LP is positioned to be competitive in Campaign 2008 in terms of organizations, financial resources, and votes -- and that people who chose to support Ron Paul without finding out what he's about learn a lesson about due diligence for candidates.

Incidentally, I am not perfect on this count myself -- my endorsement of Christine Smith early in her campaign was a mistake on my part and one that I regret. However, I have to get over that mistake too and pull for the LP. Let's get to work.