Most excellent Starchild....how did it go?
Most excellent Starchild....how did it go?
Thanks Mike. There was some confusion about the call-in number – hopefully no one who tried calling in with the info below was unable to participate, as it ended up being a different number; when I tried that one, I just got elevator music. With some people joining late we didn't get started until about 815pm, and I was preoccupied with the proceedings at that point and neglected to send out a new email.
The meeting went longer than scheduled, at least an hour and a half I think, and only finished when we lost quorum (8 needed for quorum). Participants included committee members John David Ward, Richard Fast, Harland Harrison, Mimi Robson, Jon Prosser, Tyler Braaten, Joshua Smith, David Ahren, Gail Lightfoot, Tim Ferreira, Ed Wimmers, and myself. There were no non-committee participants on the call that I'm aware of.
Richard Fast (committee vice-chair) listed several options for replacing the platform:
1) The LP Radical Caucus platform, as subsequently modified by himself (and others?) to include more California content;
2) The "skeleton" platform written by Kevin Shaw;
3) The national LP platform as modified by Marc Joffe
4) The national LP platform by itself
5) The "taxation is theft" amendment
Unfortunately we didn't have all these options in front of us, and figuring out what we were voting on and how to proceed got confusing at times.
We ultimately voted unanimously to put everything discussed so far into a preliminary report to delegates. The deadline had already passed for this, and Mimi was urging we pass something that can be put on the state website. Her input in the meeting was helpful on a number of items.
I was satisfied with the vote to forward everything, as my fear had been that several different "options" would be presented to delegates for replacing the platform, without including what I believe should be the default option always before delegates, to simply update the platform one plank at a time by amendment, i.e. modifying it incrementally rather than replacing it entirely with a different document. I believe that is the approach of the "taxation is theft" amendment option listed above, as well as several separate amendments from Mark Hinkle.
The committee had voted down those amendments in a single vote last Tuesday, but then this Tuesday a motion to reconsider was passed. After that vote to reconsider passed however, the second vote to adopt the recommendations or not was not taken, leading to more confusion as to whether they had been approved or not. We eventually moved to include them on a 6-3 vote (I voted yes, as I think Mark made good suggestions for improving current wording), after a move to divide the question and consider them individually failed 6-2 (I voted yes on that as well, feeling that each proposal should be considered separately and also fearing they might be voted down again if considered as a slate).
John David Ward resigned as Platform Committee chair – he is not planning to attend the convention, nor is vice-chair Richard Fast, who chaired the meeting, so we need to appoint a new committee chair who will present the committee's recommendations to delegates as required by the Bylaws.
In discussing the proposed Radical Caucus replacement platform, I made a motion which passed 5-1 (with 2 abstentions) to add to this document the specific agencies and government policies mentioned in the current Platform. I still think starting from the existing Platform and making modifications is probably the best way to go, but the Radical Caucus platform is fairly detailed, as well as the most popular of the options reportedly reviewed in a previous Platform Committee teleconference I was unable to attend. If delegates were to adopt a different platform in place of the current one, adding California-specific to that strongly libertarian document might be about the best replacement we're likely to get, so I thought it would be good to try to port over all the specific references to California agencies and policies (laws).
Finally, we voted to hold the regular Tuesday teleconference at 8:00 pm, but to add another teleconference this Wednesday at 7:00 pm. (This is our last week before the convention that we have to work on a Platform Committee report, and much remains to be done.) Following the meeting, Richard Fast proposed by email that we also hold a teleconference this Sunday at 8:00 pm, and a number of people including myself agreed. If enough of the committee are interested to have a quorum, it appears we will meet that day as well.
Love & Liberty,
((( starchild )))
LPSF Platform Committee Representative,
Chair, Libertarian Party of San Francisco
P.S. – Here are some other notes from the meeting which were posted by Gail Lightfoot:
Great report....keep us posted about the meeting schedules. I'd like to drop in sometime.