I don't think I'm underestimating Paul's appeal in the slightest.
Right now, the latest polls, supposedly after his "surge of support," put him at less than 1% support (and statistically at 0% due to his support being smaller than the margin of error in polls).
If he was creating a surge of support for libertarian thought, he'd be polling at 5% or more. Right now, with 1% of the GOP vote (which represents about 30% of all registered voters), he's polling at a national support level of 0.3% (on the generous side!).
For comparison's sake, Harry Browne received 0.5% of the national vote in 1996, or about 66% more support than Ron Paul's "surge" is showing.
If Paul is indeed the candidate that the vast majority of big-L Libertarians is supporting (which I don't believe, but will go along with for the sake of argument), these numbers indicate that Paul is actively harming the libertarian movement by turning in a significantly weaker poll performance than Harry Browne's first run for office. In other words, it's "negative momentum."
If Paul's support amongst big-L Libertarians is significantly below the phoney 70% level bandied about (as I suspect), then it shows his appeal even amongst Libs is highly limited, and that he is bringing in no real new support.
In either situation, it's hard to look at his dismal poll numbers and see "appeal" that's delivering any sort of quantifiable result. And we've already debated the qualitative results of conflating Libertarian messaging with Republican far-right-wing messaging.
Starchild <sfdreamer@...> wrote: Brian,
I think you're underestimating Ron Paul's appeal and saying what you'd like to believe is true, rather than actually looking at the reality. Come to a Ron Paul Meetup and ask some people what their political backgrounds are, and why they support him. I've met numerous people at his events who were neither LP stalwarts nor members of the right wing.
I hardly think Ron Paul and Cindy Sheehan are equally libertarian. Ron Paul has a history in the freedom movement -- coming and speaking at LP conventions and libertarian events, appearing in libertarian films and video like Aaron Russo's "Freedom to Fascism" and a John Stossel ABC special, running for office as a Libertarian, articulating the concept of the Non-Aggression Principle in his public speeches, etc. I'm not aware of Cindy Sheehan having done any of these things. If she does, great, but she has yet to establish her credentials in the way that Dr. Paul has.
Love & Liberty,
<<< starchild >>>
I am interested in the Sheehan campaign as well, since
it (unlike Paul's) actually has the potential to have
Of course, if I was calling for the end of the
Libertarian Party running a candidate in San
Francisco, and referring to Cindy Sheehan as the "only
real choice" in this race, I'd be called bonkers --
and rightly so.
If I went further as you did before vis-a-vis Paul,
becoming an executive of an LP county organization,
and then slammed the LP candidates for Congress and
endorsed Sheehan above all of them, I'd be in even
I happen to believe that Sheehan is good for the LP
because she has people talking about issues dear to us
-- giving *OUR* candidates a forum to talk about our
solutions to those problems and allowing us to build a
real bridge to people on the left, historically
ignored by the LP, who are concerned.
Ron Paul doesn't offer us this opportunity. His
campaign appeals to LP stalwarts and the right wing.
Both those stalwarts and the right wing have been
overtargeted by the Libertarian Party for over a
That you're willing to endorse the Paul campaign, and
not the Sheehan one, despite the fact that they're
equally "libertarian" is even more surprising to me.
After all, it's the Sheehan campaign, not the Paul
one, that is attracting real support from a base of
people not historically aligned with the LP. And
Sheehan, unlike Paul, will still be in the race and on
the ballot come election day in 2008.
--- Tim Campbell <profreedomradical@...> wrote:
Well Brian, I AM interested in the fact that Cindy
Sheehan and Ron Paul are trying to high light things
that the LP has been talking about for 30 years. I
don't expect Sheehan, Paul or most of their non LP
member followers to join the LP, nor do we need
but we need to get our issues of peace, anti-fed
reserve out there in the mainstream and show that
2 party system is whack, so that the LP will be
in the long run. I am not endorsing Sheehan,
she would be better than Pelosi, because she is more
left than I want to go, but in coalition government,
which is the only way to begin restoring our
we have to give a little to get a little, as that is
how politics works, in general. The idea of
a liberty switch" and "boom", we are back to
Pre-Lincoln Jeffersonian style government, is a pipe
dream. We have to take little steps over the next
plus years and pass these ideas to our children. The
LP, alone, will never restore our republic. We have
learn the 3 "C's" as I call them Coalitions,
Compromise and (voluntary) Cooperation. When these
implemented successes are seen all over the
world. The LP is starting to adhere to some of these
and should do more.
--- Brian Miller <hightechfella@...> wrote:
> One wonders how readily the Paul embracers would
> embrace an effort to recruit Sheehan and her team
> Libertarian politics. I suspect, purely
> speculatively, somewhere between "not at all" and
> chance in hell!"
> --- Ron Getty <tradergroupe@...> wrote:
> > Dear Everyone;
> > Todays SF Chronicle had an article by Cindy
> > in response to the response to her announcement
> > if Pelosi did not start impeachment proceedings
> > quickly that she would run against Pelosi. There
> > one paragraph Sheehan wrote which I have
> > because it is of interest to Libertarians.
> > Ron Getty
> > SF Libertarian
> > http://tinyurl.com/24la5g
> > Sheehan: Let's get away from usual party
> > Peace activist voices her independent streak
> > The feeddback I have been receiving since I
> > announced that I would challenge U.S. Rep. Nancy
> > Pelosi, D-San Francisco, for her House seat --
> > unless she gives impeachment the go-ahead -- has
> > been running about 3-to-1 positive.
> > Some people have offered to quit their jobs to
> > to California's Eighth Congressional District to
> > help my possible campaign. People are lining up
> > donate and help, and I am again very grateful
> > touched beyond belief by the generosity and
> > of my fellow Americans.
> > I truly understand the not-so-supportive people,
> > though, because I have been in their shoes. Here
> > the United States, most of us put our faith in a
> > two-party system that has failed peace and
> > repeatedly. The Republicans do not have a
> > on the culture of corruption (although BushCo
> > elevated it to policy status), and the way we do
> > politics in this country needs a serious
> > when all we the people are getting is a
> > I was frightened out of ever voting for a third
> > party, or an independent candidate, but voting
> > of fear is one of the things that bestowed us
> > the Bush crime mob and may give us the
> > if not in party affiliation, Hillary Clinton.
> > I was a lifelong Democrat only because the
> > were limited. The Democrats are the party of
> > and were the party that started every war in the
> > 20th century, except the other Bush debacle. The
> > Federal Reserve, permanent federal income taxes,
> > one but two World Wars, Japanese concentration
> > camps, and not one but two atom bombs dropped on
> > innocent citizens of Japan -- all brought to us
> > the Democrats.
> > Don't tell me the Democrats are our "saviors"
> > because I am not buying it -- especially after
> > bought more caskets and more devastating pain
> > they financed and co-facilitated more of
> > Bush's abysmal occupation. The Democrats also
> > allowing a meltdown of our republic by allowing
> > evils of the executive branch to continue
> > unrestrained by their silent complicity.
> > Good change has happened during Democratic
> > but as in the civil rights and union movements,
> > positive changes occurred because of the people,
> > the politicians. I will run as an independent
> > because I find the corruption in both parties
> > unhealthy, and I believe we need to have more
> > allegiance to humans than to a political party.
> > I have nothing personally against Pelosi and
> > found our previous interactions very pleasant.
> > However, being "against" the occupation of Iraq
> > means ending it by ending the funding,
> > future illegal wars of aggression and holding
> > accountable. Words have to be backed up by
> > and if they aren't, they are as empty as Vice
> > President Dick Cheney's conscience.
> > If Pelosi does her constitutional and moral duty
> > Monday, then I believe some balance will be
> > to the universe, and my organization, People for
> > Humanity, can carry on with its humanitarian
> > projects. If she doesn't, we will carry on
> > with a political campaign to boot.
> > I hope this challenges other people who desire
> > healthy political change and not temporary
> > to replace other Democrats and Republicans who
> > not conform to the beatitudes of peace,
> > sustainability and the rule of law for
> > not just poor or marginalized people.
> > Being a born and raised Californian and being a
> > Area resident for the past 14 years have given
> > great insight into the people and concerns of
> > Francisco.
> > I am concerned with many of the same things:
> > same-sex partnership laws, the environment,
> > care, affordable post-secondary education,
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