Letter: The Libertarian Party is not centrist | INFORUM – INFORUM

Tanner Cook must not have access to a dictionary, because if he did, hed understand that libertarianism reflects an extreme hands-off political policy. Libertarians currently have found a home in the Republican Party. Cases in point: U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., and his father, former-presidential hopeful Ron Paul, now retired but who served in Congress representing two different Texas congressional districts. Ron held office both as a Libertarian and as a Republican. Rand prides himself on his Tea Party affiliation.

Americans for Prosperity is a libertarian-conservative political advocacy group funded by the Koch brothers, David and Charles. AFP has supported the Tea Party. David, now deceased, ran for vice president on the Libertarian ticket in 1980.

If the Kochs personify what it is to be a Libertarian, Id look elsewhere for insight if I were Cookunless, that is, Cook has no concern whatsoever for the environment. Koch Industries and its subsidiaries have a long and tarnished reputation regarding environmental stewardship, and it is mostly likely for this reason that Charles Koch abhors oversighti.e., governmental regulation.

A laissez-faire philosophy regarding the handling of fossil fuels and other industrial-grade pollutants guarantees a recipe for certain disaster. Heres one nearby example of the Kochs environmental record: In 1999, Koch Petroleum Group acknowledged that it had negligently discharged hundreds of thousands of gallons of aviation fuel into wetlands from its refinery in Rosemount, Minn., and that it had illegally dumped a million gallons of high-ammonia wastewater onto the ground and into the Mississippi River.

If thats not extreme, I guess I dont know what is.

Hulse lives in Fargo.

This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Forum's editorial board nor Forum ownership.

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Letter: The Libertarian Party is not centrist | INFORUM - INFORUM

Meet the Highest-Polling Libertarian Gubernatorial Candidate in the Country – Reason

Donald Rainwater, the Libertarian Party's (L.P.) candidate for governor of Indiana, has racked up some unprecedented polling numbers for a Libertarian in a race in which both major parties are running candidates. The 57-year-old Navy veteran and information technology professional hit as high as 24 percent in a Change Research poll back in September.

While that very high result was an outlier, Rainwater has in the past week polled at 14 percent (in a Ragnar Research Partners poll) and 15 percent (in a Cygnal poll). Previous Libertarian candidates for governor in Indiana earned 3.2 percent of the final vote in 2016, and 4 percent in 2012.

The secret to this unusually high polling for the L.P.'s candidate seems to be voter backlash to incumbent Republican Gov. Eric Holcomb's reaction to COVID-19, seen by Rainwater and many voters, according to local media reports, as unduly authoritarian. Rainwater said in a phone interview yesterday that, "during the pandemic year [Holcomb] has been able to declare an emergency and then he has ruled by executive order without bringing the General Assembly into the conversation."

Holcomb's COVID-19 reaction included "threatening mask mandates with criminal penalties, then he backed off that when his own party's attorney general said you can't do that," Rainwater says. He slammed Holcomb for trying to designate Easter church gatherings as nonessential. Rainwater thinks individuals should make their own choices about protecting themselves and others from the risks of COVID-19, without forced government shutdowns of businesses or gatherings.

In general, Rainwater accuses the Republican incumbent of being "really out of touch with how to govern with the consent of the governed," chiding him as well for fee and tax increases. When voters saw that, "they looked around to see if anybody is actually talking about limited government and preserving the Bill of Rights," leading them to Rainwater and the L.P.

"I don't think there's anything special about me," says Rainwater, who got nearly 40 percent of the vote in his 2019 run for mayor of Westfield, Indiana, against a Republican incumbent. "There's something special about the message of limited government and government actually safeguarding individual freedom and rights. In the state of Indiana, I believe the situation that has transpired due to the pandemic has shone a very bright light on what is wrong with big government. There are a lot of people just tired of the status quo and tired of the government picking winners and losers and making decisions about who it's OK to sacrifice in order to project somebody else. That has caused people to start looking for that limited government option."

Rainwater's campaign website issue page is strongly against various taxes, including the personal income tax, residential property tax, and yearly vehicle registration fees, all of which he would like to ax. His first L.P. run, which was for the state Senate in 2016, was inspired by his view that Indiana's Republicans were insufficiently anti-taxation.

Rainwater says Indiana's existing 7 percent sales tax ought to be enough to fund the things a state government needs to do. "We need to focus on better government, which means we need to upgrade and modernize and not just 'modernize' in word but physically do the work of updating processes and systems within state government, many of which are decades old," he says, "and make government more cost-effective, and do that within the context of not eliminating any services that citizens currently expect from state government."

Rainwater also emphasizes that three states surrounding Indiana have legalized cannabis for medicinal or recreational adult use, and he strongly wants Indiana to join them. In a legal cannabis environment, Rainwater says, "the agricultural, manufacturing, and retail possibilities for Hoosiers are going to be significant, and that will generate additional sales tax revenue."

The organization that runs the state's political debates has long been friendly to third parties, Rainwater says, so it was not unique that he participated on an equal basis with the incumbent and his Democratic challenger Woody Myers in virtual debates twice. An online poll conducted by WEHT Eyewitness News asking who won one of the debates had Rainwater receiving 187 out of 203 votes cast.

Rainwater's high polling helped spur an unusually large amount of fundraising, a majority from out-of-state libertarians wanting to see results worth bragging about. He says he's pulled around $250,000, "and spent near all of it," which allowed him to pay for radio and TV commercials. (Holcomb raised over $10 million.)

Volunteers have crowdsourced funds for billboards. With door-to-door campaigning not as prominent as in a normal year, his people are contacting voters via web messages and phone banking for getting out the vote. Rainwater is thrilled that he can make a video of him saying things once and reach audiences far larger than would ever show up to a physical event, thanks to virtual avenues.

"We are getting support from traditional Republican voters and traditional Democratic voters," Rainwater says, guessing his pull is roughly 70-30 between the two major parties. "People who don't normally look at Libertarians are looking at Libertarians. I get emails and Facebook messages all the time from people who say, 'I voted this way all my life, but now I look at your campaign, and I think I'm more Libertarian than whatever it is I was voting for before.'"

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Meet the Highest-Polling Libertarian Gubernatorial Candidate in the Country - Reason

Newly Launched Chicago Thinker Aims to Promote Conservative and Libertarian Views on Campus – The Chicago Maroon

This past summer, third-years Audrey Unverferth and Evita Duffy founded the Chicago Thinker, a student newspaper publishing news and opinions from conservative and libertarian points of view. The papers purpose is to defend conservative and libertarian perspectives in a community that is increasingly intolerant of such voices, according to the Thinkers mission statement.

Unverferth, who serves as both editor-in-chief and publisher, and Duffy, the papers managing editor, hope that the Thinker provides a platform for conservative and libertarian students to express their ideas to the University of Chicago community. I think it's necessary to have a platform for conservatives and libertarians to thoughtfully speak, and then to hopefully engage with others, Unverferth said.

Part of our mission is to expose the student body to a different school of thought, to expose them to conservative and libertarian ideas that aren't usually seen in the campus community, Duffy said.

Duffy and Unverferth said the Thinkers founding was prompted by their perception that the campus community is unwilling to engage with conservative and libertarian ideas.

Last March, a post by the University of Chicagos Institute of Politics (IOP) featured Duffy holding a sign that read I vote because the coronavirus wont destroy America, but socialism will. The photo sparked widespread controversy, inspiring hundreds of posts on social media, some substantive and some aimed at Duffys personal character. The incident drew a response from IOP Director David Axelrod.

In May 2019, hundreds of students gathered to protest a bill that Brett Barbin, then a fourth-year College Council representative and head of the University of Chicago College Republicans, proposed to College Council that would have banned student life fees from being used to fund abortions.

The problem that we're currently facing on campus right now is that conservatives and libertarians are too afraid to speak because of the extraordinary social consequences that individuals like Evita and Brett Barbin have experienced, Unverferth said.

Nonetheless, Unverferth said the editors of the Thinker are open to publishing work that reflects other points of view. We happily consider work by those from across the political spectrum, she said. We love to communicate across the political aisle, and we disagree, behind closed doors, and also in our pages frequently, so we're not an echo chamber.

Most of the articles published so far by the Thinker address expressly political topics like qualified immunity and the 2020 elections, but Unverferth wants to publish other content in the future. I think it would be boring for our readers if we only focused on politics, she said. And so I would really like to expand to cover various arts events and sports games, et cetera.

Writers are going to focus on stories that they think are important to inform the student body [about] at UChicago, she said. They'll cover subjects on everything from what's happening on campus to what's happening abroad.

The Chicago Thinker is currently a digital-only publication, but Unverferth hopes to publish a physical edition in the future. Her plans, however, have been complicated given the ongoing pandemic. My goal is to go into print as soon as feasible, she said. I think life needs to resume a little bit more to normal, but I would really love to have a print edition by the end of the school year.

Unverferth confirmed that the Thinker received grant funding from Collegiate Network, a program that supports conservative and libertarian publications on college campuses. The organization is operated by the Intercollegiate Studies Institute (ISI), a nonprofit that supports conservative college students by hosting debates and lectures, providing networking opportunities, and funding conservative student organizations, publications, and fellowships.

They provided us with a grant to launch our newspaper, said Unverferth. They provide mentorship. And in the case of the Chicago Thinker, they provided the funding to build our website.

Publications supported by Collegiate Network include The Princeton Tory, The Dartmouth Review, and the recently launched Danforth Dispatch at Washington University in St. Louis. ISIs website lists Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch, who started The Federalist as an undergraduate at Columbia University, and venture capitalist Peter Thiel, who started The Stanford Review as an undergraduate, among the organizations alumni.

Unverferth said that backing by the ISI will not influence editorial decisions at the Thinker. We choose how to spend our grant money, we choose what to publish, we chose our name, she said. They do not possess any editorial control whatsoever upon what we publish, but they have provided our primary source of funding.

Looking forward, Unverferth and Duffy hope to raise money to start printing physical copies of the paper. We're planning to create some form of fundraisers so that we can raise money in order to go into print, and more in conversations with various organizations and alumni and others to obtain funding, Unverferth said.


Newly Launched Chicago Thinker Aims to Promote Conservative and Libertarian Views on Campus - The Chicago Maroon

Libertarian candidates share conversation and coffee – The Wellsboro Gazette

Liz Terwilliger, Libertarian candidate for the U.S. House of Representatives from PAs 12th District, and Noyes Lawton, Libertarian candidate for PA State Representative from District 68, met with residents at Clock Works Coffee in Westfield.

Discussion included topics of small businesses, difficulties getting signatures during the COVID-19 season, inflation and over-regulation.

The Oct. 28 event was held so locals could share what was on their minds before the election. Terwilliger and Lawton both said they have tried to help people understand there are parties for election other than just Republican or Democrat.

We need to start discussing everybody. It doesnt matter what party. We need to talk to each other and come up with solutions. I think through conversation we will have solutions, said Lawton.

The candidates agreed that people of opposing views today are yelling at each other instead of talking. They said its important to talk to find solutions, rather than team-picking. If there can be civil conversations, areas of agreement can be found.

Even though strong emotions can be generated, we need to let each other be human so that we can have a conversation and not just shut down. Lets have a conversation so we can see each others point of view, said Terwilliger.

Lawton said it is important to pay attention to local elections. The decisions of the state representatives and county commissioners have a more immediate impact on community residents versus the decisions of the president, which are watered down and filtered through federal and state departments.

We have become addicted to government and, as soon as we have a problem, we say, Whats the government going to do to fix the problem? instead of saying, What am I going to do to fix the problem? or What are we as a community going to do to fix the problem? said Lawton.

Terwilliger said the community needs to serve the community rather than looking to the government to take over. She said it is important to have representatives who are representative of the people and not just the party or finances.

One of the reasons that I want to keep doing these kinds of things is to keep people connected and have these kinds of conversations about what people would like to see. It is important to be in touch with constituents, said Terwilliger.

The Libertarian candidates said as long as people do not take what does not belong to them and do not hurt people or infringe on their rights, they want people to live their life.

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Libertarian candidates share conversation and coffee - The Wellsboro Gazette

Cotton win good news, say parties of 2 rivals – Arkansas Online

Ricky Dale Harrington's landslide loss to Republican U.S. Sen. Tom Cotton on Tuesday represents a high-water mark, thus far, for the Libertarian cause in Arkansas and across the nation.

In unofficial returns, with 2,545 of 2,575 precincts reporting, it was:

Cotton 787,542

Harrington 393,110

The former prison chaplain from Pine Bluff, thus far, had 33.3% of the vote. Two-thirds of the ballots were for Cotton, a first-term incumbent from Little Rock.

"It's a record for a Libertarian U.S. Senate candidate anywhere in the United States. Ever. So we're absolutely enthusiastic and appreciative of that showing," said Joe Bishop-Henchman, the national party chairman.

Brian Colas, Cotton's political director, said 66.6% is also a high water mark for an Arkansas Republican in a major statewide race.

[RELATED: Full coverage of elections in Arkansas arkansasonline.com/elections/]

"We wanted to break 60%. We broke 66%," he said. "We're thrilled."

Both sides fared well because they didn't have to split votes with a Democrat.

Josh Mahony of Fayetteville, the party's only candidate, dropped out of the race hours after the filing deadline. Dan Whitfield, a Bella Vista independent, failed to collect enough signatures to qualify for the ballot.

That left voters with just two options: Cotton or Harrington.

Until now, Alaskan Joe Miller was the top-performing Libertarian Senate candidate; he captured 29.2% of the vote when he ran in 2016.

Miller was well-known by voters -- he'd lost a Senate bid in 2010, despite winning the Republican Party nomination.

Harrington, on the other hand, was a political newcomer.

Despite having minimal name recognition and even less money, Harrington, 35, captured nearly as many votes in Arkansas as Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden.

He easily outpaced other Libertarians on the Arkansas ballot, including the party's presidential nominee, Jo Jorgensen of South Carolina, who finished with 13,024 votes.

Cotton was leading in 72 of the state's 75 counties, but Harrington finished ahead in Pulaski, Jefferson and Phillips counties. All three are Democratic strongholds.

Hal Bass, a political science professor emeritus at Ouachita Baptist University, portrayed Tuesday's vote as an aberration.

"It was just a protest vote by Democrats," he said.

"That does not indicate that there is a Libertarian constituency of that magnitude in Arkansas. It does indicate that there's an anti-Cotton constituency of that magnitude in Arkansas," he said.

Harrington, who could not be reached for comment Wednesday, fared relatively well despite being heavily outspent.

His campaign had collected $68,191 as of Oct. 14; Cotton had collected more than $12.8 million.

Harrington surpassed the most recent pollster's predictions.

A Talk Business & Politics-Hendrix College survey Oct. 19 Monday showed Cotton winning, 62% to 27% with 10% undecided.

The Arkansas Poll, released Oct. 28, had Cotton even further ahead, 75%-20%.

Cotton's internal polling had pointed to a closer race. In the closing days, he made repeated trips to Arkansas, while also working elsewhere to push for continuing Republican control of the Senate.

Rather than criticizing his opponent, Cotton talked about his own record and priorities.

"The campaign knew that the vast majority of Arkansans agreed with Sen. Cotton on the issues, so that's what our campaign prioritized," Colas said.

In addition to campaigning in Arkansas, Cotton also campaigned for vulnerable Senate colleagues, making stops in Georgia, Montana, Colorado and elsewhere.

Most of the candidates he backed ended up winning.

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Cotton win good news, say parties of 2 rivals - Arkansas Online

Chad C. Meek, Author, Futurist Has Just Released a Book Entitled The New Libertarian Party, Revolution for America – PRNewswire

SAN DIEGO, Nov. 2, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- In his thought-provoking book, Meek points out how the 1% has co-opted the United States political system and government, which has marginalized the American People into a separate downtrodden serfdom class of citizens.

The 62-year-old futurist explains that a perfect storm has occurred that has completely adulterated every American Government Institution that includes the Executive, Judicial, Legislative, and the Federal Reserve.

Benjamin Franklin is quoted as saying, "The ordaining of laws in favor of one part of the nation to the prejudice and oppression of another is certainly the most erroneous and mistaken policyAn equal dispensation of protection, rights, privileges, and advantages, is what every part is entitled to, and ought to enjoy."

In his abstract, Meek offers solutions to put the power back in the American People's hands. A single financial transaction tax, citizen jurists, universal income, universal education, on-line voting, and reducing the national voting age to 16.

The New Libertarian Party's (N.L.P) platform, also called the Great American Consolidation, along with the rapid adoption of Bitcoin, Blockchain, and Artificial Intelligence, will revolutionize how our government will operate within the next five years.

Meek states, "For Generations X, Y, Z, the traditional political parties offer zero solutions to a Fascist controlled government that has lost its mind and moral compass.

He further adds, "Nothing will change with the current antiquated infrastructure other than the rich getting richer."

The N.L.P genesis began at a place called Giant Rock, located in the Mohave Desert. Chad C. Meek lived here during this discovery time and witnessed the thousands of people who attended the annual space convention over three decades.

Meek's first novel and a screenplay called Giant Rock were released in 2016 and profiled his family's and others' experiences who made direct contact with extraterrestrial entities.

The people of Giant Rock created a movement led by his uncle George Van Tassel circa 1910-1978, which promoted Peace, U.F.O. disclosure, free-energy, and a non-nuclear carbon-free world.

"The ideas that my uncle and the eclectic group out at Giant Rock were able to channel from the Universal Mind were 50 years before their time."

Books available on Amazon



Media Contact:Chad Meek[emailprotected]805-308-1949

SOURCE Chad C. Meek

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Chad C. Meek, Author, Futurist Has Just Released a Book Entitled The New Libertarian Party, Revolution for America - PRNewswire

Voting as a Collective Action Problem – Niskanen Center

A common criticism of libertarian philosophy is that it cant handle collective action problems that a totally voluntary society lacks the tools to build lighthouses, prevent overfishing, or ensure we all get our vaccines.

In response, libertarian thinkers developed a branch of economics dedicated to showing how collective action problems can be solved with voluntary cooperative arrangements. Elinor Ostroms work was particularly important for arguing that, under the right conditions, norms and civil society can evolve to govern the commons from the bottom up.

There are obviously limits to informal norms, however. For one, they are easy to undermine through appeals to a narrow, self-interested conception of rationality. After all, norms exist to enforce cooperative arrangements that would otherwise be unstable. That suggests it is always possible for a sophist to jeopardize collective action by appealing to their peers individually rational, but myopic motivations: Just catch one more fish, no one will notice. With each person who defects it then becomes increasingly tempting for others to follow suit.

Voting represents an interesting test case for the robustness of voluntary solutions to collective action problems, since any single individuals vote is mathematically insignificant. Indeed, according to one often-cited estimate, the likelihood of casting the decisive vote in a U.S. presidential election is 1 in 60 million. And yet when voters act collectively, thousands of individually meaningless votes can quickly add up and become a force to be reckoned with.

Nonetheless, many of the same libertarians who insist that norms and civil society can solve large scale collective action problems also insist that voting is individually irrational, and therefore abstain. Voting is overrated, argues Katherine Mangu-Ward, editor in chief of Reason magazine, in a recent video posted ahead of the 2020 election. The reasons people give for why they voteand why everyone else should tooare flawed, unconvincing, and occasionally dangerous.

Your vote is wildly unlikely to determine the election. Its pure math, Mangu-Ward continues, citing the 1 in 60 million figure mentioned above. Worse still, boosting the turnout of people who are young, uneducated or otherwise less likely to be engaged can have the unintended consequence of diluting the vote of those who are better informed. Get out the vote campaigns promote precisely the kind of morally condemnable, ignorant voting we should be discouraging.

That libertarian bulwarks like Reason Magazine feel compelled to rehash their sophomoric arguments against voting every election cycle merely reaffirms the worry that libertarianism contains the seeds of its own unravelling. The emphasis on instrumental, means-end rationality, in particular, ignores what to most people are their primary, normative motivations for action. Voting is a civic duty because of its limited instrumental value.

The notion that only informed, high information voters should participate represents a similar instrumentalization of democracy, as if elections were merely about aggregating-up individual beliefs and preferences (as Condorcet showed, theyre not). In truth, the most informed voters also tend to be the most politically and ideologically polarized the sort of people who watch Fox News or MSNBC all day and thus hardly a sound foundation for epistocracy, to put it politely.

Of course, that we vote in large numbers at all is in some sense a vindication of Ostrom and her school of economics. Rather than act as atomized utility functions, we cement the norm of voting with the help of overlapping institutions like political parties, religious congregations, unions, non-profits, membership clubs, and not to mention friends and family. We communicate voting intentions to other individuals within these groups, which are small enough to reinforce a mutual expectation of follow through. Groups in turn coordinate with other groups, like when a local union or social club coordinates with its other chapters. Pretty quickly a meagre individual vote becomes amplified into the hugely consequential endorsement of a union federation or influential political action committee.

I therefore dont believe libertarians are totally sincere when they make the voting is irrational argument. Or, more to the point, I suspect it is a case of motivated reasoning. As weve already seen, it is cognitively dissonant with their optimism about voluntary collective action in other spheres (collective action for me but not for thee). But moreover, it seems to spring from their mood-aversion to electoral politics more generally. In the words of Mangu-Ward, Washing ones hands of the whole system is a good way to ensure that they remain clean, even when the politicos are dirty. As such, her tendentious arguments represent what criminologists refer to as techniques of neutralization self-serving excuses that proactively rationalize defection from social norms that one finds inconvenient. Classic examples include shirking at work because everyone else is doing it, or telling yourself that shoplifting if OK because big retailers have already baked petty theft into the price.

Libertarians double down on their mood-aversion when they argue that voting is inherently immoral or distasteful because it involves participating in a coercive enterprise. And true to form, Mangu-Ward argues that we arguably have a moral duty not to vote, comparing voting to participation in a firing squad. Yet besides the obvious tension with the voting is ineffectual view, there is no pressing need for a norm against voting, just as there is no need for a norm for littering, overfishing or free-riding off of herd immunity. Those behaviors all naturally fall out of individually self-interested human action; they are what is left in the absence of social coordination through norms and other communicative modes of Reason.

Unfortunately, motivated reasoning is just the generous interpretation. The less generous one is that the average libertarian is tragically bereft of the social capital (clubs, networks, and civil society) needed to leverage their idiosyncratic beliefs and motivations into collective action. Just tune into the Libertarian Party convention if you doubt this. If you thought herding cats was hard, try herding philosophical anarchists.

The even less generous view is that libertarianism represents a self-defeating memeplex a mind virus that handicaps its host so badly that it ceases to reproduce. Ron Paul himself could be on the ballot, only to lose because a non-trivial percentage of his supporters rationally chose to stay home. Indeed, if you wanted to hobble the labor movement, say, one strategy would be to plant agent provocateurs within a unions ranks to charismatically defend the instrumental rationality of being a scab. Or better yet, one could deploy dorm room thought experiments to convince their pseudo-comrades that being a scab is not just rational, but just and noble.Were that conviction to ever catch on within the labor movement it would cease to exist, a victim of ideological natural selection.

And as a matter of fact, that is more or less what happened in the 1960s. It was called the New Left, and its aversion to normative authority and social conformism hobbled progressives ability to influence institutional reform for a generation. Now that the right is having its own countercultural moment, with no shortage of libertarian fellow travelers, one suspects that the attempt to advance social change through culture-jamming and norm subversion will be equally in vain.

At the same time, it will always be easier to tear down norms than to build them back up. So be sure to not only vote, but heap shame and stigma on those who dont. Not because its individually rational, but precisely because its not.

This post was adapted from Sweet Talk Conversation.

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Voting as a Collective Action Problem - Niskanen Center

New Westminster Libertarian doing double duty in 2020 election campaign – The Record (New Westminster)

Don Wilson is doing double duty with the BC Libertarians.

Wilson, who is the leader of the BC Libertarian Party, is also the partys candidate in the New Westminster riding. He was elected as the partys leader in 2018, after joining the party the year before.

The provincial election was only a couple months away and I was trying to find a political home. I was an odd political creature, fiscally conservative but socially liberal, he said in a statement to the Record. I first encounteredlibertarianideas in 2012 seeing Ron Paul's effort to become the Republican Nominee for U.S. president. He spoke against wars of aggression; he articulated a clearly defined role for government and preached a tolerance for others. His message resonated for me like a bell. It wasn't until Ifound the BCLibertarianParty in 2017 that made the connection between what Dr. Paul was saying and the libertarian political philosophy. I was hooked. I became a candidate right away and ran for president at the next annual general meeting in late2017. The following year I was elected party leader, a post I have been honoured to hold since.

According to Wilson, the BC Libertarian Party, which is fielding 25 candidates in ridings across B.C., puts an emphasis on limited government, civil liberties and the protection of private property rights.

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New Westminster Libertarian doing double duty in 2020 election campaign - The Record (New Westminster)

Is voting third party a waste? – The Baylor Lariat

By Ava Dunwoody | Staff Writer

Third-party candidates have won over a small minority of voters and continue to campaign for more votes come the presidential election on Nov. 3. Green Party candidate Howie Hawkins and Libertarian Party candidate Jo Jorgensen are still running for the presidential seat.

According to Pew Research Centers polling, Joe Biden is currently leading the polls with 52% support and Donald Trump comes second with 42%. Jorgensen is in third with 4% support and Hawkins is fourth with 1%. That means both third-party candidates together comprise about 5% of voter support.

Parker sophomore Conner Ammar is able to vote for the first time in the upcoming election and said he credits Duvergers Law as an explanation of why our system is set up all across the country where basically all elections are going to be two party. This is why, he said, its hard for third-party candidates to even come close to getting a majority of the votes.

His theory is that when you have an election where there is one seat being filled and you have [a] simple majority election, Ammar said, Its going to be two party, invariably.

Ammar said this is because there is a certain amount of votes needed to win over a seat, and voters arent always encouraged to vote for what represents their beliefs best.

Third-party voting in the United States has almost always been a little bit of a waste of time and a little bit of a waste of peoples votes, Ammar said. Largely speaking, people, when they vote third-party, usually vote for the Libertarian candidate. That is the most popular non-Democrat or Republican Party in the country right now followed not really closely by the Green Party.

Lauren Daugherty is involved with the Libertarian Party of McLennan County and ran for office as a Libertarian candidate for Justice of the Peace in 2018. She said she votes Libertarian because she wants to vote for what she believes in, not against what she doesnt.

The libertarian platform best speaks to my values, Daugherty said. I believe that our Constitutional rights are very important and thats what our country is founded on and thats what makes us special. I think individual rights are sacred and I want to support candidates who take that very seriously.

Ammar said he thinks many people who will vote third-party and who voted third-party in the 2016 election did so because they were ticked off at Trump and/or Hillary and/or Biden. He said he predicts there will be a similar turnout of third-party voters in this election as in the last one.

I think that for a lot of people our age, people are going to vote Libertarian or otherwise third-party because its a protest vote in a lot of ways, Ammar said.

Voting for Kanye West would be an example of a protest vote, Ammar said, as Kanyes Tweet declaring his candidacy has created social media hype. Those who dont like Trump or Biden may vote for him as a meme instead of for other third parties, Ammar said.

Ammar also said he thinks its unclear how recent events, including the Black Lives Matter movement and COVID-19, will impact third-party voter turnout other than candidate responses to these events swaying voter opinions.

Reporter John Stossel is a recognized Libertarian voter who speaks openly about why he votes the way he does. In an interview with Ben Shapiro posted by The Daily Wire on Nov. 11, 2018, Stossel said he thinks the reason the third-party turnout is so low is because the majority of voters do not pay attention to politics consistently until election time.

Theyre not paying attention to politics, then suddenly they are asked to vote, Stossel said in the interview. Half those people then do vote, [and] they vote who? Republican or Democrat. They dont pay attention long enough to hear the Libertarian argument.

Another reason Ammar said people may vote third-party is in hopes of a change.

Maybe some of them think that things can change and there can be multiple parties, Ammar said, because they look at places like Britain where you have [many parties], and they all have substantial influence in Parliament, but were built different. We dont have the same structure in our elections.

Daugherty said the defeatist attitude of voting third party is a big reason for the lack of voter turnout. As with so many things throughout history, she said, just because something has been the status quo doesnt mean it should continue to be the status quo.

On the ballot this year, the Libertarian candidate will be listed along with the Republican and Democrat candidate. This happened in the 2016 election as well.

We only have three presidential candidates that will be on every single ballot in America, Daugherty said. Theres some others that will be on various ones, but only three will be on literally every ballot. And yet, only two of them are allowed at the debate.

Daugherty said this is a significant example of how the Libertarian Party isnt given the same platform, which causes less recognition as a legitimate option for voters.

Another factor Daugherty said affects third party voter turnout is the straight ticket voting system, which means voters are able to select one political party across the entire ballot without seeing the other options.

A lot of people go in and only click that one button, and I think that does a great disservice to our democracy, Daugherty said. I think people should see all of these different candidates and need to choose each one.

Libertarian candidate Jo Jorgensen said in a video of a campaign rally posted on YouTube by Jo Jorgensen for President 2020 on Aug. 9 that she does not think voting third party always means wasting a vote.

If its somebody who lives in a very red or very blue state, I say youre wasting your vote by voting for whoever is going to take your state anyway If youre in California, your vote is wasted if you are voting for Joe Biden, so how about voting for what you really want? Jorgensen said. Also, there are something like 40 million Americans who lean Libertarian. If everybody voted the way they wanted, we would win overwhelmingly.

A 2017 study from the Cato Institute suggests voters with libertarian leanings may comprise around 20% of the U.S. electorate, though other studies yielded a range of estimates.

Especially in this election, Daugherty said people need more options. She said voters are often told there are only two options, which causes less people to vote for the Libertarian party even though they are a good and viable option.

We see this very strongly in certain election years when people arent keen on the Republican nominee and they are not keen on the Democratic nominee and they wish there were more options, Daugherty said. I think when we give people more options, they can better choose what is best for them.

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Is voting third party a waste? - The Baylor Lariat

Libertarian Candidates Meet with Voters and Show them a Third Choice for This Upcoming Election – WICZ


Former Gubernatorial Candidate, Larry Sharpe, is traveling the state introducing the public to Libertarian candidates, and today was Broome's turn.

Three libertarian candidates and one Republican candidate spoke at the event at the DoubleTree in Binghamton.

They spoke about how the lesser of two evils is still evil, and that voting Libertarian and third party isn't throwing your vote away.

Sharpe said "Imagine for a second that the Libertarian candidate Jo Jorgenson actually got 300 thousand votes in New York State this year... Imagine how amazing that would be... In reality would it affect the election... no, Biden would probably win New York either way... but it just told New York that we are not going to support your bad behavior..."

Tom Daniel Quiter, running against Senator Fred Akshar, said "The reason why we need more voices and parties... the Libertarian Party... so that we don't have that hand shaking control... one side wants one thing one side wants another... but their may be millions of people that need a third thing... and they are not getting it if only two sides are making that agreement..."

The event included Congressional Candidates Keith Price and Victoria Alexander, State Senate Candidate Tom Quiter, and Broome Legislature Candidate Michael Vasquez.

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Libertarian Candidates Meet with Voters and Show them a Third Choice for This Upcoming Election - WICZ

The Town That Went Feral – The New Republic

In its public education campaigns, the U.S. National Park Service stresses an important distinction: If you find yourself being attacked by a brown or grizzly bear, YES, DO PLAY DEAD. Spread your arms and legs and cling to the ground with all your might, facing downward; after a few attempts to flip you over (no one said this would be easy), the bear will, most likely, leave. By contrast, if you find yourself being attacked by a black bear, NO, DO NOT PLAY DEAD. You must either flee or, if thats not an option, fight it off, curved claws and 700 psi-jaws and all.

A Libertarian Walks Into a Bear: The Utopian Plot to Liberate an American Town (and Some Bears)

by Matthew Hongoltz-Hetling

PublicAffairs, 288 pp., $28.00

But dont worryit almost never comes to this. As one park service PSA noted this summer, bears usually just want to be left alone. Dont we all? In other words, if you encounter a black bear, try to look big, back slowly away, and trust in the creatures inner libertarian. Unless, that is, the bear in question hails from certain wilds of western New Hampshire. Because, as Matthew Hongoltz-Hetlings new book suggests, that unfortunate animal may have a far more aggressive disposition, and relate to libertarianism first and foremost as a flavor of human cuisine.

Hongoltz-Hetling is an accomplished journalist based in Vermont, a Pulitzer nominee and George Polk Award winner. A Libertarian Walks Into a Bear: The Utopian Plot to Liberate an American Town (and Some Bears) sees him traversing rural New England as he reconstructs a remarkable, and remarkably strange, episode in recent history. This is the so-called Free Town Project, a venture wherein a group of libertarian activists attempted to take over a tiny New Hampshire town, Grafton, and transform it into a haven for libertarian idealspart social experiment, part beacon to the faithful, Galts Gulch meets the New Jerusalem. These people had found one another largely over the internet, posting manifestos and engaging in utopian daydreaming on online message boards. While their various platforms and bugbears were inevitably idiosyncratic, certain beliefs united them: that the radical freedom of markets and the marketplace of ideas was an unalloyed good; that statism in the form of government interference (above all, taxes) was irredeemably bad. Left alone, they believed, free individuals would thrive and self-regulate, thanks to the sheer force of logic, reason, and efficiency. For inspirations, they drew upon precedents from fiction (Ayn Rand loomed large) as well as from real life, most notably a series of micro-nation projects ventured in the Pacific and Caribbean during the 1970s and 1980s.

None of those micro-nations, it should be observed, panned out, and things in New Hampshire dont bode well eitherespecially when the humans collide with a newly brazen population of bears, themselves just working to create their own utopia, property lines and market logic be damned. The resulting narrative is simultaneously hilarious, poignant, and deeply unsettling. Sigmund Freud once described the value of civilization, with all its discontents, as a compromise product, the best that can be expected from mitigating human vulnerability to indifferent nature on one hand and our vulnerability to one another on the other. Hongoltz-Hetling presents, in microcosm, a case study in how a politics that fetishizes the pursuit of freedom, both individual and economic, is in fact a recipe for impoverishment and supercharged vulnerability on both fronts at once. In a United States wracked by virus, mounting climate change, and ruthless corporate pillaging and governmental deregulation, the lessons from one tiny New Hampshire town are stark indeed.

In a country known for fussy states with streaks of independence, Hongoltz-Hetling observes, New Hampshire is among the fussiest and the streakiest. New Hampshire is, after all, the Live Free or Die state, imposing neither an income nor a sales tax, and boasting, among other things, the highest per capita rate of machine gun ownership. In the case of Grafton, the history of Living Freeso to speakhas deep roots. The towns Colonial-era settlers started out by ignoring centuries of traditional Abenaki law by purchasing land from founding father John Hancock and other speculators. Next, they ran off Royalist law enforcement, come to collect lumber for the king, and soon discovered their most enduring pursuit: the avoidance of taxes. As early as 1777, Graftons citizens were asking their government to be spared taxes and, when they were not, just stopped paying them.

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The Town That Went Feral - The New Republic

Election politics have devolved. The Libertarian Party has something different to offer. – Des Moines Register

Mike Conner Jr., Iowa View contributor Published 10:16 a.m. CT Oct. 6, 2020

Jake Porter, Libertarian candidate for governor, meets with the Register's editorial board. Des Moines Register

The mainstream media may not publicize it often, but America is fed up.

Of course, this comes as no surprise to me. Ive been hearing it from voters from all sides for years. Iowa and Americas voter registration numbers show it with an increase in independent and third party voters over the past fouryears. This despite the best efforts from both Democrats and Republicans to strengthen their political tribes through legislation and other bullying means.

The frustration that America is feeling was reinforced following the debacle that was the first presidential debate this past Tuesday. For two hours, Donald Trump and Joe Biden displayed their amazing ability to dodge questions or issues that affect citizens, while turning the debate into no more than an infantile Twitter argument.

This is what American politics has devolved into 167 years of two parties being in power has culminated in a hyper-partisan tug of war for power over the people.

All over social media, Americans expressed their embarrassment for the pathetic exhibition. Even the mainstream media found it next to impossible to spin this in a way to make it palatable.

Libertarian Party candidate for President, Jo Jorgensen, addresses the crowd during a campaign stop in Westfield, Ind., at Grand Park Sunday, Sept. 27, 2020. A few hundred people attended her only scheduled campaign stop in Indiana.(Photo: Doug McSchooler/for IndyStar)

Google search trends for Jo Jorgensen, Libertarian Candidate, and Third Party shot through the roof after the debate. Jo Jorgensens campaign website received so much traffic that it temporarily crashed. Third party social media pages and groups were flooded with new likes and follows. The appetite for another option is definitely there.

Personally, I spoke with multiple friends who were disheartened by the display. They are sick and tired of the status quo, but still couldnt yet justify wasting their vote on a third party candidate.

To me, I see it the other way around why waste your vote on the status quo?

A vote for Jo Jorgensen can do so much more than a vote for either Biden or Trump. If she is able to get 2% in Iowa, that means Libertarians are considered a major party in Iowa, which immediately gives Iowa LP candidates credibility. If she can collect 5% of the vote, that means the 2024 LP candidate would qualify for public matching funds. That would be a game-changer and instantly makethe Libertarian Party a contender.

You can vote for the status quo and continue to get the sideshow that you saw this past Tuesday, or your vote can actually have an impact on the political direction of the country and get us one step closer to a legitimate third option.

So I agree. As proven by the appalling debate, this election is far too important to waste your vote on Trump or Biden next month.

Mike Conner Jr.(Photo: Special to the Register)

Mike Conner Jr. is the state chair of the Libertarian Party of Iowa.

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Election politics have devolved. The Libertarian Party has something different to offer. - Des Moines Register

The rise of ACT in 2020 highlights tensions between the party’s libertarian and populist traditions – The Conversation AU

New Zealands election is coming down to a simple contest between the Labour-Green bloc on the left and the National-ACT bloc on the right. Although the right is behind in the polls, if it were to gain the majority, ACT Party leader David Seymour could become deputy prime minister.

Either way, ACT is newly assertive. Although Seymour owes his Epsom seat to Nationals grace and favour, he seems less inclined nowadays to be their political lapdog. He wants people to support ACT on its own terms.

Remarkably, the party has risen in opinion polls from below 1% to recently as high as 8%. That would give ACT up to ten seats in parliament. Would Seymour also negotiate to bring one or more first-time MPs into cabinet alongside him?

In the past two elections, ACT held on with only one electorate seat, thanks to the National Party deal: Epsoms National supporters agree to vote for the ACT candidate as their local representative but give their party vote to National.

This arrangement goes back to 2005. It paid a handsome dividend in 2008 when ACT won Epsom and achieved 3.65% in the party vote. This delivered the party a proportional share of five seats, despite being below the 5% party-vote threshold.

With ACTs support on the right, and two other parties in the centre, John Key formed a National-led government that lasted three terms. Then ACTs party vote fell below 1% in 2014 and 2017, with only the Epsom seat keeping it in parliament.

In 2020, however, after a term in opposition and no longer overshadowed by National, ACT is flourishing again.

Seymour has held his own, speaking up for freedom of speech and opposing the banning of semi-automatic guns following the mosque shootings in March 2019. He introduced a members bill to permit euthanasia that is likely to come into force after a decisive referendum to be held alongside the general election.

However, National leader Judith Collins has bluntly stated she sees ACTs job as being to win Epsom and to help eliminate the populist New Zealand First Party, which on recent polling is likely to be ousted from parliament on October 17.

Read more: The missing question from New Zealand's cannabis debate: what about personal freedom and individual rights?

ACTs rise in the polls does come partly from those conservative erstwhile New Zealand First voters who are disillusioned with Winston Peters for forming a coalition government with Labour.

But Collins must be worried that some centre-right voters have given up on National winning and are exercising their freedom of choice by defecting to ACT and she wants them back.

The Association of Consumers and Taxpayers was founded in 1993 by former National cabinet minister Derek Quigley and Sir Roger Douglas, formerly minister of finance in David Langes Labour government and engineer of the economic deregulation that became known as Rogernomics.

The party stands for less government, more private enterprise and freedom of choice. It is therefore a child of neoliberalism indeed, its only legitimate child.

Read more: Assisted dying referendum: people at the end of their lives say it offers a 'good death'

For example, Seymours referendum bill to allow assisted dying (euthanasia) was officially named the End of Life Choice Bill, asserting its ideological origins with the word choice. He is proposing much more radical cuts to public spending and taxation than his only possible coalition partner, National.

We gained an insight into how ACT supporters think from the online reader-initiated Stuff/Massey opinion poll in July. Compared with the other parties in parliament, ACT supporters stand out as:

most likely to rate the New Zealand governments overall response to COVID-19 as unsuccessful: 29.5% compared with 9.9% for the whole sample

most strongly in favour of abolishing the Mori electoral roll: 68.2% compared with 36.6% overall

more likely to prefer that the government take a cautious and sceptical approach on climate change: 72.5% compared with 36.4% overall

more in favour of the country getting back to business as usual rather than reforming the economic system itself during the post-pandemic rebuild: 75% compared with 31% overall.

ACT supporters values are largely diametrically opposed to those upheld by Green supporters, as might be expected of a libertarian party that stands for individualism and deregulation.

In the past, though, the party has resorted to populist law-and-order and anti-welfare policies. In 2011 it deployed the one law for all slogan to attack policies addressing indigenous rights.

As ACT leader since 2014, Seymour has steered the party back towards free-market liberalism. But there is still an element of right-wing populist thinking among ACTs supporters.

Sizeable minorities of them agree with conspiracy theories about COVID-19 (25%) and hope Donald Trump is re-elected in November (32%) more than among National supporters who stood at about 20% on both points.

Read more: NZ election 2020: survey shows voters are divided on climate policy and urgency of action

If current polling holds true, Seymour will bring with him into parliament a caucus of freedom-loving individuals, none of whom has any previous representative experience.

Among them is a firearms enthusiast, a former police officer and a farmer. At number seven on the list is a self-employed mother of four who the party claims is better than ten ivory tower experts when it comes to beating poverty.

So far, ACTs best election result was in 2002 when it gained 7.14% of the party vote and nine seats in the 120-seat House of Representatives. If it repeats that in 2020, Seymour will go from being a lone voice for his party to the leader of a small but inexperienced caucus.

Managing that team of individualistic newbies may well be the first test of his libertarian instincts.

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The rise of ACT in 2020 highlights tensions between the party's libertarian and populist traditions - The Conversation AU

The 5 (Mostly Libertarian) Candidates Who Might Get Blamed for Tipping Control of the Senate – Reason

On Thursday afternoon, the third-party candidate with arguably the single greatest chance of being labeled a "spoiler" in battle to control the U.S. Senate abruptly dropped out to endorse his embattled competitor, the reliably anti-libertarian Sen. Lindsey Graham (RS.C.).

"President Trump has asked that conservatives stand together and reelect Lindsey Graham in order to help make America great again, and I agree," Constitution Party nominee Bill Bledsoe explained in a statement.

Bledsoe, a veterinarian, ran for Senate in 2016 under both the Constitution Party and Libertarian Party banners, winning 1.8 percent of the vote. He averaged 3.5 percent in the two polls this year on which his name appeared. (Deep-funded Democratic challenger Jamie Harrison averaged 44.5 percent, compared to Graham's 44 percent.) The race is projected by nine of 10 prognosticators to be at least leaning Republican, with the tenth calling it even.

The pressure on nonconformist candidates and voters alike to join the Manichean political war of 2020 is intense, contributing to significantly lower support for independent and third-party candidates over the past two years. While the headline focus in our presidentially obsessed culture is on how this flight from experimentation affects the contest for the White House, the fact is that even after Bledsoe's abdication, several independent and third-party campaigns have the potential to affect one of the most difficult-to-predict political questions in the country right now: Which of the two major parties will have control of the Senate in 2021?

The GOP currently holds a slim 5345 advantage in the upper chamber (with the two independents caucusing with Democrats), but prognosticators unanimously see that margin shrinking or even reversing after the election for 35 seats this November. FiveThirtyEight currently gives Democrats a 63 percent chance of winning a majority.

Eight of the 10 forecasting agencies Wikipedia collects on its Senate elections page project the parties to be either tied or within one seat of each other after the dust from the election settles. With nine individual races at or near "tossup" status, look for a mixture of arm-twisting and backroom sweeteners to persuade potential spoilers to pull a Bledsoe.

Here are five Senate races where third-party candidates are likeliest to receive more votes than the margin between the Democrat and Republican. They are ranked by the percentage-point distance between their own polling numbers and the top-two gap, with the usual caveats that there frequently aren't many polls and that third-party candidates routinely undershoot their pre-election projections.

1) Shannon Bray (L), North Carolina, +0.9.

Field, polling percentages: Cal Cunningham (D), 42.6; Thom Tillis (R, incumbent), 40.5; Bray, 3.0; Kevin Hayes (Constitution), 1.6; other/not voting/undecided, 12.3 (14 polls).

Forecast: Six out of 10 election forecasters classify this race as a tossup; three say leans toward the Democrats; one says it's a likely Dem win. Analyzes Vox's Dylan Scott: "Everybody I spoke to expects an extraordinarily tight Senate race. The outcome could very well decide which party controls the Senate in 2021, going bythe Sabato's Crystal Ball ratings. Assuming Democrats lose in the Alabama Senate race but win in Arizona, Colorado, and Mainewhich forecasters say is a fairly likely scenariothen they just need a win in either North Carolina or Iowa. With one of those toss-up states, by Sabato's reckoning, Democrats can secure 50 Senate seats."

Know your "spoiler": Bray is a Navy vet who currently works in cybersecurity for the Defense Department. He is campaigning on the cybersecurity issue, plus improving health care for veterans and fighting for "equal rights under the law for all American citizens."

2) Shane Hazel (L), Georgia, +0.3.

Field, polling percentages: David Perdue (R, incumbent), 46.0; Jon Ossoff (D, 42.6); Hazel, 3.9; other/not voting/undecided, 7.6 (7 polls).

Forecast: Five of 10 outfits say the race leans toward the Republican; four say it's a tossup. "A sure sign the outcome is in doubt," reported the Athens Banner-Herald on September 18, "is how much the candidates and the national super PACs backing them are spending to bomb the airwaves, to the dismay of political ad-weary TV viewers. Total TV/radio ad spending in the race, including future bookings, is now more than $83.4 million." An important note: Georgia requires runoffs if no candidate wins a majority, which means (as University of Georgia political science professor Charles Bullock told the Banner-Herald), "We may not know which party controls the Senate until January."

Know your "spoiler": Hazel is a former Marine and current podcaster who wants to "#EndTheWars," "#EndTheFed," and "#EndTheEmpire." Mission statement: "[T]o bring people together while preserving the freedom of every individual, regardless of skin color, age, faith, gender, love and every other nuance which make us unique. We must come together and remove the government/corporate cabals from the lives of peaceful people here in the US and around the world."

3) Lisa Savage (i), Maine, 0.0. (Max Linn, another independent, is right behind at -0.6.)

Field, polling percentages: Sara Gideon (D), 44.2; Susan Collins (R, incumbent), 41.6; Savage, 2.6; Linn 2.0; other/not voting/undecided, 9.8 (5 polls).

Forecast: Six out of 10 agencies rate this one a tossup, others are "likely" or "lean" Democrat. BUT THERE'S A TWIST. Maine will at long last this year use ranked choice voting in a federal race, which means that if no candidate wins a plurality, the low man/woman will be tossed out, with his/her votes redistributed based on who those voters listed as their second choice. This process will be repeated for as long as it takes for someone to win a majority.

Know your "spoilers": Savage, a teacher and grandmother from rural Maine, is a Green in everything but name. "I believe we deserve a government that works for us, not the big banks, weapons manufacturers, fossil fuel giants and corporate lobbyists who are calling the shots in Washington," she told Ballotpedia. Linn, an eccentric, Trumpy financial planner who has mounted runs for office previously as a Republican, a Democrat, and a member of the Reform Party, favors a five-year ban on all immigration; he answered a recent debate question about coronavirus policy by theatrically cutting up a mask.

4) Rick Stewart (L), Iowa, -0.3.

Field, polling percentages: Theresa Greenfield (D), 45.7; Joni Ernst (R, incumbent), 43.7; Stewart, 1.7; Suzanne Herzog (i), 1.0; other/not voting/undecided, 7.3 (3 polls).

Forecast: All 10 election prognosticators rate Ernst's re-election bid as a tossup. The Washington Post says: "So far, $155million has beenspentin Iowa on the Senate race alone. The TV is filled with dark messages of political rot. Greenfield, thedaughterof a crop-duster, hasraised more moneythan Ernst. She is wearing well,attracting10percent of voters who supported Trump four years ago."

Know your "spoiler": Stewart, a former cop, retired entrepreneur, and Calvin Coolidge aficionado, ran against Ernst in 2014 as an independent, earning 2.4 percent of the vote to her 52.1 percent. (Libertarian Douglas Butzier got 0.7 percent.) As a Libertarian, he won 26.2 percent of the vote in a losing contest for Linn County sheriff, and he got 3 percent in 2018 when running for secretary of agriculture. He is campaigning to "End all wars" (including "the racist Drug War"), "end all economic nonsense," and "keep government simple."

5) John Wayne Howe (Alaskan Independence Party), Alaska, +/-?

The question mark is there because Howe, a Ron Swansonesque machinist who wants to eliminate taxes, privatize public land, and make government functions voluntary, has not yet been included in any poll against the Republican incumbent Dan Sullivan and the Democrat-backed independent challenger Al Gross.

Alaska is traditionally one of the most third-party-friendly terrains, and non-major-party candidates have received at least 6 percent combined in every election for this Senate seat since 1996. As for the 2020 race, seven out of 10 forecasters rate the headline race a likely Republican win and two say it leans R, but there is a tossup forecast in there too.

And Howe is a real humdinger: "The governmentfederal, state, borough, cityall are thieves. Even when the spending comes from a vote of the people it is stealing, the only difference is those that voted for spending are now also guilty. How do we fund government without theft?"

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The 5 (Mostly Libertarian) Candidates Who Might Get Blamed for Tipping Control of the Senate - Reason

Keith MacIntyre recognized as official Libertarian candidate for Penticton – Pentiction Western News

Keith MacIntyre has made the cut to stand as an official candidate in the provincial election.

He has surpassed the required number of signatures required ahead of the Oct. 2 deadline with Elections BC for candidates.

MacIntyre is running as a candidate for the BC Libertarian Party, and he is calling on those who dont want to support the larger parties to support him.

We have an opportunity this election to show Victoria that we dont feel heard. If you dont like politics, if you dont vote because its a waste of time, if you feel disheartened by the state of politics, vote Libertarian.

MacIntyre has experience running a tech company for 17 years as owner of Big Bear Software and has seen firsthand the waste in government procurement federally and provincially in the defense, medical and provincial ministries.

The signatures were gathered from citizens across the Penticton riding, including in Peachland, Summerland, and Naramata. It was in conversations with people that MacIntyre came to the decision to run for MLA.

I was inspired by the conversations I had in the riding with people who feel frustrated and angry at the state of politics in B.C., MacIntyre said in a release. Many are frustrated that this election has been called, including myself.

The partys platforms will be announced in the upcoming weeks, with one core principle being the support of peoples personal freedoms.

To report a typo, email: editor@pentictonwesternnews.com.

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Keith MacIntyre recognized as official Libertarian candidate for Penticton - Pentiction Western News

Trump now needs to balance science with his libertarian instincts he should look to Japan for inspiration – The Independent

Among the millions of words being poured out about the political ramifications of The Donalds brush with coronavirus, I have seen little on how it affects his war with science. If he bounces back quickly, like his ally Jair Bolsonaro in Brazil, he may well double down on the theory that Covid-19 is a minor inconvenience just like flu and attribute his recovery to one of the unproven remedies, which someone has encouraged him to rely on, or even his own toughness.

For those of us who instinctively put our faith in science, one of the problems we are having in the political debate around the pandemic is that science is proving as difficult to pin down as nailing jelly to the wall. By the time scientific advice is filtered through the policy-making process, we finish up in England, at least with such absurdities as prohibiting two families from organising a children's party for seven in a park, while dozens congregate legally, and apparently safely, inside a badly ventilated pub (at least before 10pm). We are told that scientists have signed off on such nonsense because it fits the theory of R, reducing the overall transmission rate in the population.

There is a buzz in the scientific community around research which suggests that the scientists who advise our government are worrying too much about R and not enough about K. The theory of K dispersion starts with an anomaly: that some places have been devastated by Covid (like Lombardy in Italy) but others, for no obvious reason, much less (southern and central Italy). The horrors of Manaos or Guayaquil have by-passed other cities. The theory of R centres on average transmission rates, while K centres on concentrated clusters originating with a small number of super-spreaders or super-spreading events.

Apparently, only 10 to 20 per cent of infected people are responsible for 80 to 90 per cent of transmission. Most infected people barely transmit it (children hardly at all), though some of those (such as politicians on the stump) meet so many people at close range they can have the same effect as a super-spreader. The infamous Patient 31 in Daegu, South Korea, appears to have single-handedly infected over 5000 people through her evangelical church. The policy implication is that instead of locking down large areas of the country because R has crept above 1, the overwhelming priority is to track down, and isolate, the super-spreaders and minimise events and venues where they can spread the virus.

The one country where this point has been understood and acted upon most effectively is Japan. Japan could have been devastated by Covid and there were plenty of people warning of disaster. It has enormous cities, a very high population density and one of the highest proportions of elderly people in the world. Unlike some of its Asian neighbours, it was not well prepared for the pandemic and did not have a ready mass test and trace system. Unlike China, it was unable, for legal as well as political reasons, to impose a tough lockdown. Mass transport continued and much of normal life. The government relied on persuasion and the public's self-discipline. Japan has had outbreaks and deaths but its Covid death rate is the lowest in the G7.

The Japanese approach, which we ought to be studying carefully, had two main elements: cluster busting, tracing back contacts of infected people to identify clusters and the super-spreader events which gave rise to them; and a preoccupation with ventilation, encouraging people to avoid crowds, in close contact, in closed spaces, especially chanting and singing.

Combined with social distancing, an understanding of the value of masks, and incentives for temporary closure of theatres, music events and stadiums, the country has fared reasonably well. They have suffered just one death per 100,000 people, compared to the UK's 62, and the US's 59. The Japanese economy, the world's third largest, has taken a hit, though not as bad as the worst affected countries like the UK, France, Spain and Italy. Japan seems to have avoided the worst of all worlds experienced in the UK: burdensome and increasingly resented restrictions, unnecessary economic damage and ineffectual mitigation.

The Japanese experience might also prove helpful to Trump. Assuming that he recovers quickly and gets back to the campaign trail, he has to find a way of acknowledging that his cavalier disregard for scientific advice wasn't smart; but, at the same time, he has to keep faith with his libertarian supporters who will not accept formal restrictions. A version of the Japanese approach might play well, especially since Tokyo has gone to extraordinary lengths to keep onside with Trump.

When it comes to emerging from a Covid infection personally, there are some lessons for Trump to learn from his good friend Boris Johnson. There is a sympathy vote but it doesn't last long; and the public expect, above all, competence when their lives and livelihoods are at stake. Another, more painful, lesson is that this is a disease which doesn't always lend itself to swift and permanent recovery. Even if Trump leaves hospital, he could be back on oxygen support in a week's time.

Without claiming any medical knowledge, I am struck, like many British observers, by the fact that our prime minister gives the impression of suffering from long Covid: permanently below par; seemingly exhausted; uncharacteristically slow-witted. It seemed unlikely a few weeks ago but Mr Biden's major selling point in the coming election may prove to be his relatively good health, energy and fitness at 77 years old.

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Trump now needs to balance science with his libertarian instincts he should look to Japan for inspiration - The Independent

Kalish Morrow: Full hearts and helping hands – Hanford Sentinel

Kalish Morrow

Right about now Im sure we could all use something that reminds us there is still good and kindness in the world. Social Media, news, rallies, protests, and riots keep reflecting a broken and mean-spirited society. So in this weeks column I wanted to promote the antithesis to these vexing problems by highlighting human kind-ness through volunteerism.

Weeks ago, as California fires set new records for most acres burned in a year we saw that, despite the devastation, our communities rose up to meet the needs of hundreds of families who suddenly found themselves homeless and destitute. Clovis Community Church put out on social media that they were taking donations of things such as non-perishable food items, toiletries, towels, etc. As that can be a bit of a trek coming from Hanford I told local friends that I could collect items from them and drive it up to Clovis.

Not knowing what to expect, I was both shocked and moved to find my truck piled high with contributions from friends, neighbors, and fellow military spouses.

As I got to the church there were dozens of volunteers running around, collecting items from vehicles and trailers, and organizing them into heaping piles. The first guy I talked to who was directing me where to go stood there for a moment just shaking his head in disbelief. He had said that he was simply in awe of how much good there was in the world when this many people will show up at a moment's notice and flood them with donations to give to people they didnt even know. By the end of the week they were at max capacity for what they could take in.

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Kalish Morrow: Full hearts and helping hands - Hanford Sentinel

Three theories on government explain what to expect until Nov. 3 | TheHill – The Hill

The first presidential debate was supposed to be about difficult political, legal, economic and cultural issues. Although President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump and Biden's plans would both add to the debt, analysis finds Trump says he will back specific relief measures hours after halting talks Trump lashes out at FDA over vaccine guidelines MORE succeeded in reducing it to a contest of personalities, these disagreements will continue to rage until Election Day, especially as Judge Amy Coney Barretts nomination to the Supreme Court progresses. Despite their complexity, the issues should be much easier to navigate once we understand the three theories of government that ultimately drive them.

The first conservatism is about preserving our deepest democratic values. These values include the two main categories of assets in our Constitution: our individual rights to life, liberty and property, and the separation of powers among the three branches of government. Conservatives are not necessarily opposed to social, political or legal reforms per se. They just insist that these reforms be incremental and neither disrupt nor erode our constitutional order.

Second is libertarianism, the theory that government is inherently oppressive, individual liberty is the highest good and, therefore that government is best which governs least. Yes, we still need a police force and military to do what individuals alone cannot: protect us collectively from internal threats (crimes) and external threats (invasion and terrorism). But thats about it. We can and should do everything else by ourselves, without relying on the government.

Third is progressivism (also known as liberalism or socialism). Progressives view government as the best possible institution to promote and protect the rights and interests of all the people it represents. These rights and interests include a decent standard of living, affordable health care, affordable housing, quality education, and equal treatment under the law.

Suppose, then, that Anne, a single, 30 year-old Black mother of two young children, works two jobs, both of which pay federal minimum wage ($7.25/hour), and contracts pneumonia. What role, if any, should the government play here?

The progressive will say three things. First, the government should force Annes employers to pay her much higher wages so that she can afford all the necessities and a reasonable amount of the luxuries that modern Americans typically enjoy. Second, neither Annes race nor her relatively low income should make her less of a priority than any other American; her value not just as an employee and as a mother, but also as a human being, is equal to that of every other human being. Third, the government should therefore help Anne receive and pay for the medical treatment she needs to recover.

Though they may not always acknowledge it, conservatives and libertarians generally disagree with all three points. For them, life is unfair and it is simply not the job of government to make life fair or fairer. But, as it turns out, this tough-luck attitude is actually inconsistent with the theory of conservatism. Once again, conservatives stated mission is to preserve our deepest democratic values. And since 1933, one deep democratic value has been a government-sponsored safety net for the more vulnerable members of society, entitlement programs such as Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and SNAP. Any claim by modern conservatives that such government assistance is morally, legally, practically or philosophically unsound is inconsistent with more than 80 years of American history.

Libertarians, too, have a weak case here. Once again, libertarians think that individual liberty can be maximized only by minimizing state power. The assumption underlying this zero-sum approach is that liberty is freedom from state coercion and interference. But liberty in this narrow sense means little for the many individuals who are victimized by forces outside their control for example, abuse, poverty, illness, disability, violence, racism and pollution. What they are all missing is a second, more substantial kind of liberty: the freedom to pursue a happy, healthy, quality life. So, assistance from the government would not restrict their liberty their range of meaningful options and opportunities but rather would enhance it.

We often hear conservatives and libertarians urging people to stop seeking a government handout and instead pull themselves up by their bootstraps. But rugged individualism is not a viable solution for people who do not have the ability to survive or advance on their own in a global economy for example, young children and adults incapacitated by disease. And even for those who do have the ability to survive or advance, it isnt clear why the government should still not help and sustain them in this effort. Such assistance does not work against our deepest democratic values, nor does it diminish these millions of individuals autonomy; quite the contrary.

Whether Anne has socioeconomic rights such as the right to affordable health care is a question of law. Whether the law should grant her this right is largely a question of political theory. Conservatives and libertarians answer this question in the negative. They ultimately prefer that the government act as a Bad Samaritan toward the less rich and less politically powerful, that it just stand by and let them fend for themselves. This callous position is fundamentally inegalitarian; it presupposes that the rich and politically powerful are more valuable more worthy of the rights to life, liberty and property than everybody else. By contrast, progressives are committed to the egalitarian ideal first articulated in the Declaration of Independence and echoed by the Fourteenth Amendment, the principle that every human being whatever his/her race, ethnicity, national origin, religion, gender, sexual orientation, wealth, social status and intelligence has equal intrinsic worth.

It is difficult to see how Americans in 2020 would disagree with this more enlightened view. But millions do, including many Republican voters. So, for better or worse, we can expect some serious cognitive dissonance in the collective American mind this month: inegalitarianism ascending to the nations highest court as egalitarianism prevails at the ballot box.

Ken M. Levy is the Holt B. Harrison Professor of Law at Paul M. Hebert Law Center,Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge. He is the author of Free Will, Responsibility, and Crime: An Introduction. Follow him on Twitter @KenLevy2020.

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Three theories on government explain what to expect until Nov. 3 | TheHill - The Hill

Mohawk Valley – 2020 Election voting information – WRVO Public Media

Early voting locations and hours for each county can be found at the links below.

Herkimer County

Oneida County

Otsego County

To see the candidates on the ballot for the Mohawk Valley region please click on the following links to be brought directly to your county.


District 21:

Democratic - Tedra L. Cobb

Republican - Elise M. Stefanik

Conservative - Elise M. Stefanik

Working Families - Tedra L. Cobb

Independence - Elise M. Stefanik

District 22:

Democratic - Anthony J. Brindisi

Republican - Claudia Tenney

Conservative - Claudia Tenney

Working Families - Anthony J. Brindisi

Libertarian - Keith D. Price, Jr.

Independence - Anthony J. Brindisi

State Supreme Court Justice

District 5:

Democratic - Rory A. McMahon

Republican - Michael F. Young

Conservative - Rory A. McMahon

State Senate

District 49:

Democratic - Thearse McCalmon

Republican - James N. Tedisco

Conservative - James N. Tedisco

Independence - James N. Tedisco

District 51:

Democratic - Jim Barber

Republican - Peter Oberacker

Conservative - Peter Oberacker

Independence - Peter Oberacker

State Assembly

District 101:

Democratic - Chad J. McEvoy

Republican - Brian D. Miller

Conservative - Brian D. Miller

Working Families - Chad J. McEvoy

Green - Barbara A. Kidney

Independence - Brian D. Miller

District 118:

Republican - Robert J. Smullen

Conservative - Robert J. Smullen

Independence - Robert J. Smullen

SAM - Robert J. Smullen

District 119:

Democratic - Marianne Buttenschon

Republican - John S. Zielinski

Independence - Marianne Buttenschon

SAM - Michael C. Gentile


District 21:

Democratic - Tedra L. Cobb

Republican - Elise M. Stefanik

Conservative - Elise M. Stefanik

Working Families - Tedra L. Cobb

Independence - Elise M. Stefanik

District 22:

Democratic - Anthony J. Brindisi

Republican - Claudia Tenney

Conservative - Claudia Tenney

Working Families - Anthony J. Brindisi

Libertarian - Keith D. Price, Jr.

Independence - Anthony J. Brindisi

State Supreme Court Justice

District 5:

Democratic - Rory A. McMahon

Republican - Michael F. Young

Conservative - Rory A. McMahon

State Senate

District 47:

Republican - Joseph A. Griffo

Conservative - Joseph A. Griffo

Independence - Joseph A. Griffo

District 53:

Democratic - Rachel May

Republican - Sam Rodgers

Conservative - Sam Rodgers

Working Families - Rachel May

Libertarian - Russell S. Penner

Independence - Sam Rodgers

SAM - Sam Rodgers

State Assembly

District 101:

Democratic - Chad J. McEvoy

Republican - Brian D. Miller

Conservative - Brian D. Miller

Working Families - Chad J. McEvoy

Green - Barbara A. Kidney

Independence - Brian D. Miller

District 117:

Republican - Kenneth Blankenbush

Conservative - Kenneth Blankenbush

Independence - Kenneth Blankenbush

District 118:

Continued here:

Mohawk Valley - 2020 Election voting information - WRVO Public Media

Letter to the Editor: Let’s hear from the Libertarian on the debate stage – The Delaware County Daily Times

To the Times:

Its no secret in America, we are living in a two party system. In the upcoming 2020 election the GOP and Democratic parties are nominating two of the weakest candidates this country has seen in decades. Many voters say they see no difference between the two candidates. People are starting to wake up to see that this two party system is no longer working in America. For two long, the duopoly on the American vote has led to citizens being undervalued, forgotten, and lost. Wouldnt it be great if Americans were presented a third option?

Recently, the Let Her Speak movement has been sparking interest amongst tens of thousands of Americans. This movement has complete validity to it, but for it to work, voters fed up with the two party system need to speak up and make a change. I say this because as I am writing this letter, the GOP and Democratic parties are actively trying to suppress third-party voters' voices. What if I told you there was a candidate, who will be on the ballot, and has the following credentials: No sexual assault allegations (unlike the GOP and Democratic respected candidates), a PhD in industial organizational psychology, a successful tech entrepreneur, a college professor at Clemson University, wants to end the national debt, marched to end police brutality, wants to help the environment by cutting Co2 emissions, supports free and open trade, and is the only female candidate in 2020? Trust me, I could keep going with this candidates credentials and common sense policy stances that attract moderates from both sides of the political spectrum and independents, but I wont bore you.

Ill cut straight to the point. Dr. Jo Jorgensen, the Libertarian Party candidate, has a right to be heard. A lot of the major media sources in America will not even utter her name, even as she continues to poll over 5% (that is, when she is even included in the polling). In one poll of over 15,000 registered voters by VeriPoll, Jorgensen polled as high as 35% (for reference, most accredited pollsters have survey sizes of roughly 1,000 participants). The Let Her Speak movement has one goal: To get Dr. Jorgensen onto the debate stage come September.

The problem with this? Its going to take a large effort. The Commission on Presidential Debates is run by the Republican and Democratic parties, and they will not allow for Americas largest third-party candidate to be heard. Today, Jorgensen is being silenced. This might even be the first time youve heard of Dr. Jo Jorgensen, but I encourage you to look at her policies for yourself. If you like them, speak up! Its about time we heard a third-party voice in America. Let her speak.

Matthew Pyfer, Drexel Hill

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Letter to the Editor: Let's hear from the Libertarian on the debate stage - The Delaware County Daily Times