Gary Johnson vs. Mark Sanford

Bill Kauffman talks up Gary Johnson as a potential presidential candidate in 2012:

At breakfast the morn of the rally, I sat across the table from a friendly dude wearing a peace-sign T-shirt and looking like an affable old surfer. He introduced himself as Gary Johnson, the former two-term governor of New Mexico. Over the next day, I spent a fair amount of time chatting with Governor Johnson: mountain-climber, triathlete, vetoer of 750 bills.

He told me that he may take a shot at the Republican presidential nomination in 2012 as an antiwar, anti-Fed, pro-personal liberties, slash-government-spending candidate—in other words, a Ron Paul libertarian.

South Carolina governor Mark Sanford seems to be carving out similar space in the GOP. While Sanford's stubborn parsimony within the spendthrift GOP is welcome—he is surely a stream of fresh air in a mephitic party—consider, if you will, Gary Johnson.

Yes, as a congressman Sanford opposed the U.S. intervention in Kosovo under a Democratic president; Gary Johnson opposed a Republican president's war upon Iraq. Sanford reluctantly endorsed McCain in 2008; Johnson emphatically endorsed Ron Paul. Sanford has potential on civil liberties; Johnson, like Paul, has the guts to call for the legalization of marijuana and an end to the drug war.

Eight years ago, when Johnson was still governor of New Mexico, Mike Lynch interviewed him for Reason. You can read that conversation here.

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  • libertarian democrat||

    Is he pro-life?

  • libertarian democrat||

    From wikipedia he sounds like a really great moderate libertarian. What are his bad sides?

  • ||

    Both this guy and Sanford seem like good options and a great improvement over what the Republicans have now. The question is can the anti-war libertarians live with Stanford and can the evangelicals live with Johnson. Can either side take half a loaf?

  • robc||

    can the evangelicals live with Johnson

    Yes.

    Of course, Im speaking only for myself here. But, you know, since people treat evangelical christians as a mono-block, I can speak for us all.

  • ||

    Right now, merely decent on civil liberties and on limited government sounds pretty danged good.

  • Xeones||

    Gary Johnson for God-Emperor '12!

  • ||

    IMO, if he isn't a big pro-lifer, anti-drugger, he won't stand a chance in the national GOP scene. The gop still has to suck up to the christian conservatives.

  • ||

    Anybody who can begin a sentence with a phrase other than "We Must!" would be a fucking gigantic improvement.

  • ||

    I think that BO is so bad that virtually anyone will look good by comparison.

  • Warty||

    Even Huckabee, John?

  • ||

    I will say this. When Obama is done in 8 years, that might be a good time for the libertarians to make a huge national push. People may be worn out from big government. (if Obama's policies aren't working the way I hope they will)

  • phalkor||

    based on your description this guy sounds like a terrorist.

  • Cabeza De Vaca||

    I doubt he could win the nomination, but I hope he runs. If he gets a large enough following it might influence the other candidates to adopt parts of his political agenda.

  • ed||

    It begins.

  • creech||

    Has no more chance of winning the GOP nomination than Ron Paul did. So, after the GOP convention, he disappears leaving whomever unknown the LP has put up to carry the libertarian banner. Johnson should instead, if wanting to tilt at windmills, go after the LP nomination right now and spend some time building credibility, contacts, and a campaign team within the LP. Barr proved you can't do it at the last minute.

  • Gimme Back My Dog||

    The gop still has to suck up to the christian conservatives.

    It's like Branch Rickey told Ralph Kiner--"we could have come in last place without you".

    Right now the GOP is in last place and the sooner they stop blowing the Moral Majority types the sooner they can start rebuilding.

  • cuernimus||

    He's certainly going to need more exposure if he wants to beat Sarah Palin, Rick Perry, or even Mark Sanford. Former governors don't make the news cycle as much as current governors, so unless he is a 10-second soundbite machine, his empty platitudes just aren't going to reach the masses.

  • ||

    And he might actually stand a chance, sine he doesn't have the appearance of nutjob baggage that Ron Paul did hanging around his neck.

    Note that I say appearance, not actual. I voted for Paul in '88 and would do so again in a heartbeat, but he's roadkill as far as residential politics go. Johnson is younger and decent looking, and heck, his skin isn't blue. (No, not Paul obviously...) He's probably a better speaker than Paul and won't be lured into arcane civil war arguments on TV.

  • Brandon||

    Johnson's stances beg the question: how did he get elected NM's governor...twice? Is he a recent convert to libertarian ideas? Is he a slick talkin' politician? Or is he just a fortunate fluke a la Ron Paul?

  • robc||

    My favorite Johnson story is when he admitted to having used cocaine. Some media member asking a question about it used the term "experimenting" and Johnson went off on the guy because he didnt experiment. He knew what it would do and did it because he enjoyed it.

  • ||

    Right now the GOP is in last place and the sooner they stop blowing the Moral Majority types the sooner they can start rebuilding.

    Not really sure on that one. Even assuming America is relatively socially moderate, I don't see how the GOP moving from being socially conservative to socially moderate-conservative gets them any votes. Why vote for the half-Democrat when the other guy's a full Democrat?

    That being said, many Republicans need to understand there are other priorities in governance than just social issues. Taking firm action on economic principles, making meaningful steps to corral government waste, and allowing people to determine their own outcomes would go a long way to rebuilding image, even if they don't really budge on their social issues (let's face it, issues like gay marriage, abortion, and the death penalty don't personally affect a huge swath of the population).

    Then again, the Democrats promised the same stuff the last four years or so, and look what we've gotten... I don't hold out much hope for the GOP to learn from both their mistakes and those of the Obama administration.

  • ||

    Most of the people on here who rip on the evangelicals don't know shit about what they are actually like. They are generally not supporters of big government. They don't support gay marriage or drug legalization. But for the most part they want the feds to leave them alone and certainly want the feds to get the hell out of the State's business.

    Yes, the evangelicals are not going to help with ending the drug war or gay marriage. But, right now the Dems control everything and I don't see either of those things changing.

  • ||

    The libertarians are gonna have to make a run as their own party. Not riding the GOP's tattered coattails. When wholesale restructuring of government is what you are selling, you don't do it by aligning with one of the two major parties.

    "You know who gave us the democrats we have in office now? The republicans."

  • Naga Sadow||

    phalkor,

    That comment was full of win.

  • ||

    "That being said, many Republicans need to understand there are other priorities in governance than just social issues. Taking firm action on economic principles, making meaningful steps to corral government waste, and allowing people to determine their own outcomes would go a long way to rebuilding image, even if they don't really budge on their social issues (let's face it, issues like gay marriage, abortion, and the death penalty don't personally affect a huge swath of the population)."

    All very true. Despite what BO thinks, people are not stupid. They know how bad the deficits are and the price that will be paid for them. They also know what crooks Congress is. Waste, corruption and the deficit are what people are going to be voting on in 2012. The other thing to remember is most people could give a rats ass if NSA is listening to phone calls trying to stop terrorists and most people think KSM should have had his balls cut off and wonder why we didn't waterboard him to death rather than just 200 times or whatever happened. Libertarians may not like that, but it is true.

  • robc||

    You know who gave us the democrats we have in office now? The republicans. The fuckers who voted for them.

    FTFY

  • cuernimus||

    Johnson's stances beg the question


    No, it raises the question. The western states have had a "leave me alone" perspective since they were settled; remember that Barry Goldwater was an Arizona senator. More recent settlers don't share this sentiment, but it still exists.

  • BDB||

    "The question is can the anti-war libertarians live with Stanford "

    Sanford has rejected pre-emptive war, John, and says he would have voted against Iraq.

  • ||

    BDB,

    I didn't know that. In that case, what problems will Libertarians have with Stanford?

  • robc||

    what problems will Libertarians have with Stanford

    Their mascot is an idiotic tree?

  • robc||

    I somehow avoided joe'z law. Fluke, I tell ya.

  • Brandon||

    No, it raises the question. The western states have had a "leave me alone" perspective since they were settled; remember that Barry Goldwater was an Arizona senator. More recent settlers don't share this sentiment, but it still exists.

    I wonder if their "leave me alone" perspective extends to policing grammar.

  • BDB||

    "I didn't know that. In that case, what problems will Libertarians have with Stanford?"

    I really don't have many problems with him. He's an evangelical but not the Huckabee/DeLay/W. style Big Government Evangelical (at least from what I've seen).

  • robc||

    Brandon,

    Semantics, not grammar. :)

  • BDB||

    One thin I don't know about, and would like to know, is his stance on trade. The American Conservative seems to like him which makes me wary since they're protectionist. If he's a protectionist who wants to scrap NAFTA and get into pointless trade wars with China and Europe then I'd have a big problem.

  • cuernimus||

    I wonder if their "leave me alone" perspective extends to policing grammar.


    I'm free to be an pedantic asshole, man! Leave me alone!

  • Norbert Sykes||

    BDB I wouldn't go as far as to say he is evangelical...he is listed as Episcopal and my mom met him a few weeks ago while he was attending the 6pm mass at the Catholic church downtown. The Southern Catholics and Episcopals I grew up with were on the socially liberal side of the Southern political spectrum...which in the context of the whole US makes them moderates.

  • I, Kahn O\'Clast||

    I live in New Mexico and I miss Gary Johnson. Last time I saw him he was introducing the author of Reefer Madness at a talk and book signing. He made a big statement on the wasted resources that go into fighting the drug war and made a great case.

    He's well-spoken, intelligent, attractive, an athlete (climbed Mt Everest soon after breaking a leg), successful businessman and is, essentially, a libertarian.

    Someone above asked how in the world he won in New Mexico -- a relatively blue state. There were many factors, one of which was an exhaustion with the rotating, corrupt, entrenched, insiders who were running the state into the ground. Here was a new idea. And he was popular.

  • Taktix®||

    I didn't know that. In that case, what problems will Libertarians have with Stanford?

    He's a creationist, but in the GOP in South Carolina, you have to be. But otherwise he's not too shabby, and I like how he's making a national name for himself by challenging the bailout (or rather, how the bailout can be used).

    To resurrect an old phrase, you run with the Sanford/Johnson you have, not the Sanford/Johnson you want...

  • Citizen Nothing||

    And the "Hoping the GOP throws us a bone" cycle begins anew...

  • ||

    Taktix,

    If we could get a President who would actually cut the size of government, I wouldn't care if he was a wican who set up an alter in the Whitehouse to sacrifice sacred cows to the Gods. Considering all of the damage a President can do in so many areas, I don't see how being a creationist is really that big of a deal.

  • ||

    IMO, if he isn't a big pro-lifer, anti-drugger, he won't stand a chance in the national GOP scene. The gop still has to suck up to the christian conservatives.

    That may be true. Maybe the GOP needs to get it's clock cleaned another time or two before they realize there are shiltlods of voters who actually think about issues rather than listening to Preacher Billy Bob down at the Baptist meeting hall.

    Give the fundies veto power over the nominee and you give the Dems the White House.

    No offense intended to my favorite preacher here at H&R.

  • ||

    Yeah, I like this guy. I like Sanford a bit more. I also think Sanford will be embraced by the GOP in a way this guy may not be.

  • ||

    And the "Hoping the GOP throws us a bone" cycle begins anew...

    Nah, just hoping that pigs develop the aerodynamic fundamentals for sustained flight.

  • ||

    Sanford has no credibilty. He will be as much of a warmonger(drug and otherwise) as Obama. Gary Johnson seems to be a much much better candidate.

    Running as a republican(ala Ron Paul) works much much better than as a libertarian. The TV air time in the primary debates is essential to any succesful campaign.


    The 3rd parties are 100% excluded from the MSM debate. The socialist warmongers(republicrats) are highly skilled at inflitrating and then destorying liberty movements...Ron Paul exploited their susceptibility to being infiltrated.

  • ||

    "That may be true. Maybe the GOP needs to get it's clock cleaned another time or two before they realize there are shiltlods of voters who actually think about issues rather than listening to Preacher Billy Bob down at the Baptist meeting hall.

    Give the fundies veto power over the nominee and you give the Dems the White House."

    J Sub D you are bigoted fuck. People who are anti-abortion actually think about things and just come to a different conclusion than you. The idea that everyone who is pro life is only so because some preacher told them so is so insulting and stupid as to almost be beneath response.

    I am sorry you are so uncomforable with people holind differing opinions. But, sometimes life is like that. Perhaps if there were fewer Libertarians like you and more Libertarians who talked to evangelicals on their own terms and explained why it is in their best interests to be for a limited government, Libertarians might do better in the world. Sitting around saying dumb ass shit like what you just said doesn't help/.

  • Boston||

    BDB,

    This is what i could find,

    PLAYBOY: Is that behind your support of Nafta?

    JOHNSON: Yes. Nafta has benefited New Mexico. With each passing day, it's a bigger boom for New Mexico as a border state.

    PLAYBOY: Do you disagree that Nafta has caused the "sucking sound" Ross Perot warned of--the sound of U.S. jobs being sucked into Mexico?

    JOHNSON: Again, my opinion is that the jobs we're talking about are those we generally don't want. What jobs are we saving?

    PLAYBOY: Manufacturing jobs.

    JOHNSON: There is a shifting, and some companies have relocated to Mexico. But we've benefited far more than we have lost. Also, it's still settling. Intel has a new semiconductor manufacturing plant in Albuquerque, one of the most sophisticated plants on the planet. It is in the U.S. because the workers are qualified and efficient here. If we're not competitive, we had better get competitive. We're moving toward a global economy whether we like it or not.


  • ||

    Most people aren't concerned about 80s and 90s-era rhetoric about small and big government. They care about a functioning government. In the post-Katrina age, most everyone recognizes "smaller government" talk to be about not reducing the size of anything, just funneling tax money to corporations while letting social services and infrastructure crumble. Maybe libertarians should focus on civil liberties and take a break from tacitly defending corporatism for a while.

  • ||

    J sub D, that would be brotherbillybob at the baptist meetin hall I frequent.

  • ||

    He's a creationist

    Yeah, see, this never bothers me like it bothers a lot of other libertarians/lefties (and I'm not saying you, Taktix, I just wanted to bring up the point). So long as Sanford doesn't want to force my hypothetical child to fall in line with his religious beliefs, I'm all set with him believing whatever he wants.

    Besides, I'm starting to think that economic liberty needs to be made a priority. All of the social liberties seem to fall in line with time, which is why I don't get too bent out of shape over drugs/marriage/choice, for example, unless the candidate goes out of his or her way to talk about them at length and often(Huckabee will destroy this country). Yet it seems that a right to property is either fought for or marked to vanish.

  • ||

    So long as Sanford doesn't want to force my hypothetical child to fall in line with his religious beliefs, I'm all set with him believing whatever he wants.

    It doesn't bother you that people representing your interests are so disconnected from reality that they don't even know about 150-year-old established science?

    I for one am tired of having leaders who govern based on what the voices in their heads (or guts) tell them.

  • Xeones||

    Maybe Tony should focus on taking notice of the fact that corporatism is impossible if the government is too small to hand out favors, and shut the fuck up for a while. But he probably won't.

  • ||

    Yo,fuck,is somebody spoofin xeones?

  • ||

    Most people aren't concerned about 80s and 90s-era rhetoric about small and big government. They care about a functioning government. In the post-Katrina age, most everyone recognizes "smaller government" talk to be about not reducing the size of anything, just funneling tax money to corporations while letting social services and infrastructure crumble. Maybe libertarians should focus on civil liberties and take a break from tacitly defending corporatism for a while.


    It's almost as if you are pure leftist talking points: leftist talking points incarnate, if you will.

    The thing is, you're completely wrong, not that it's ever stopped you before. That you think you're in the position to give liberals (the real kind) advice on liberal positions would be funny if it weren't pathetic. But that you, zombie that you are, wish we would stop worrying about economic freedom (Capitalism being the greatest catalyst for personal liberation in the history of the world) guarantees to me that we're on the right side of this fight.

    Thanks for the reality check, Tony.

  • BDB||

    Boston--

    I was talking about Sanford, not Johnson.

    I didn't think for one moment than Johnson was not a free trader. Sanford, OTOH, being the darling of the paleocons lately..I don't know about.

  • Xeones||

    Naw, brotherben. But Solana said it better whilst i was focused on digesting this curry.

  • JB||

    The GOP could run a retarded chimp in 2012 and that would look good. Er, wait...we already have a retarded chimp in office.

  • ||

    It doesn't bother you that people representing your interests are so disconnected from reality that they don't even know about 150-year-old established science?

    It does, a bit, I won't lie to you about that. I'm willing to bet it bothers me way more, in fact, than it bothers you that our sitting president doesn't seem to know about the 300-year-old established historical proof that Capitalism is the only thing standing between this civilization and the Dark Ages.

  • ||

    Maybe Tony should focus on taking notice of the fact that corporatism is impossible if the government is too small to hand out favors, and shut the fuck up for a while. But he probably won't.

    Ha. Well fucking put.

  • Taktix®||

    Solana and John,

    I was trying to say that, all things being equal, I'd take Sanford over Obama in '12 or any Democrat put up in 2016.

    But as I said before, I have NO problem with the religious aspects of creationism. My problem is with the overt denial of fact.

    Using John's example, were a Wiccan to take office and require that my hypothetical children learn, in science class, that it's a scientific fact that harm done to a person comes back threefold, well, I'd have a problem...

  • Taktix®||

    Tony,

    Good thing you slipped Katrina in there. I was worried you weren't going to meet your shill quotient for the day...

  • Boston||

    House:

    members who voted the most consistently
    for free trade were Philip Crane (R-Ill.),
    Tom Campbell (R-Calif.), J. D. Hayworth
    (R-Ariz.), Mark Sanford (R-S.C.), and
    John Shadegg (R-Ariz.). In the Senate,
    Wayne Allard (R-Colo.) compiled the best
    free-trade voting record.


    http://www.freetrade.org/pubs/pas/tpa-006.pdf

  • ||

    John, right. I think we agree.

  • BDB||

    Well, that's good. Then I really don't have any problem with Sanford either. I'm pro-choice but it's not a deal-breaker if I agree on almost every other issue.

  • ||

    When Obama is done in 8 years,

    Optimistic, aren't we?

    I was looking at some long-range economic forecasting over the weekend that indicated that there was a pretty good chance we wouldn't hit the true bottom on the current global meltdown until 2011. Even assuming some kind of perceptible recovery into 2012, that would be some heavy, heavy baggage for an incumbent.

  • ||

    "Using John's example, were a Wiccan to take office and require that my hypothetical children learn, in science class, that it's a scientific fact that harm done to a person comes back threefold, well, I'd have a problem..."


    That is the thing, if the guy beleives in limiting the power of the federal government and getting it out of education, then it doesn't matter if he is a satanist because he won't be enforcing his views on you.

    I would rather have a creationist who didn't think he, as President, had any business telling states and locals what to teach in schools than have someone who thought that education system would be perfect if only it would bend to his will regardless of how much I agreed with that person's ideas.

  • ||

    Most people aren't concerned about 80s and 90s-era rhetoric about small and big government. They care about a functioning government.

    Someday, perhaps they will realize that the only way a government can function is to have a very limited mission (a nightwatchman state) and focus on it. Big, sprawling government is too big to function - various branches of it become captured by industry, it becomes a favor factory that is irredeemably corrupted, etc. If what we have now doesn't prove this, nothing will. And having the "right people" in charge is a delusion, not a fix.

  • ||

    J Sub D you are bigoted fuck. People who are anti-abortion actually think about things and just come to a different conclusion than you. The idea that everyone who is pro life is only so because some preacher told them so is so insulting and stupid as to almost be beneath response.

    That non sequitur just made my day. Did I say anything about abortion? Anything at all? In other threads I've explained why both pro-lifers and pro-choicers hate me. I've also opined that Roe vs Wade was a bad decision.

    I've also noted the raised hands of GOP POTUS candidates when asked who here doesn't believe in evolution, Pat Robertson, the pro drug-war, anti-gambling stances, the ignorant hillbilly whackjob preacher, prayer in public schools, and other objectionable nonsense from the religious right wing of the GOP.

    If that makes me a bigot in your eyes, I'll just have to live with the psychological devastation.

  • Taktix®||

    John, I agree. And once again, Sanford is better than most.

    But does anyone here really trust a major party candidate to get into the White House and not use all the power currently vested in the Executive Branch to the fullest extent?

    If so, please raise your hand, and I'll be around to pass out your protective helmets...

  • BDB||

    We will know whether Obama will get a second term or not by late 2011.

    How? If he gets a primary challenge, he's toast (he will win the primary but lose the general.). If not, he's going to be re-elected.

    Every incumbent President defeated since 1976 (Ford, Carter, Bush I) had a serious primary challenge the same year they were defeated (by Reagan, Ted Kennedy, and Buchanan respectively).

  • ||

    Maybe Tony should focus on taking notice of the fact that corporatism is impossible if the government is too small to hand out favors, and shut the fuck up for a while. But he probably won't.

    Maybe you should stop letting your rhetoric get coopted by corporatist political parties, then perhaps people would buy the idea that "small government" talk was anything other than the concerted efforts of corporate lobbyists trying to jam their own tax breaks and deregulations down the throats of the people with nice-sounding language and fearmongering about government oppression that doesn't exist.

  • ||

    The state will never get smaller as long as we are as prosperous as we have been. The parasitical nature of government means it will always leech off of people as much as possible without making itself too painful for them to stand (in a democratic society).

    It will do anything necessary to maintain its size, which is why we are hearing noises about MJ legalization--there is a big pinch coming and unless money comes from somewhere the government will have to reduce.

    Face it, non-anarchists: the government will always do its best to take as much from the host as it can without killing it, and that's the way it is. Some douche from NM isn't going to change that.

  • ||

    "IMO, if he isn't a big pro-lifer, anti-drugger, he won't stand a chance in the national GOP scene. The gop still has to suck up to the christian conservatives.

    That may be true. Maybe the GOP needs to get it's clock cleaned another time or two before they realize there are shiltlods of voters who actually think about issues rather than listening to Preacher Billy Bob down at the Baptist meeting hall."


    J Sub D,

    You were responding to the entire quote, which implies you included pro life within your statements. You seem to be saying that anyone who is pro-life, anti-gambling, or beleives in the drug war does so only because some hillbilly preacher, which is an amazingly stupid thing to say. If that is not what you were saying, what the hell were you saying?

    You may not agree with those positions, with the exception of abortion I don't either. But you are moron if you think anyone who agrees with them does so based on some mindless religious views. Further, if you think Pat Robertson is representative of every religious person in the country, yes you are bigoted fuck.

  • ||

    "But does anyone here really trust a major party candidate to get into the White House and not use all the power currently vested in the Executive Branch to the fullest extent?

    If so, please raise your hand, and I'll be around to pass out your protective helmets..."

    If that is true, which it admittedly may be, then we are screwed no matter what because any politician no matter how committed will corrupted by the power of the Presidency.

  • ||

    "The state will never get smaller as long as we are as prosperous as we have been. The parasitical nature of government means it will always leech off of people as much as possible without making itself too painful for them to stand (in a democratic society)."

    True. We have big government because we can afford it. You would think liberals would be smart enough not to kill the golden goose, but I guess not.

  • BDB||

    Epi--

    You know what's really depressing?

    Because they're going to legalize MJ just to get more money for the state, they'll probably legalize store-bought weed made by Phillip Morris but leave growing your own as a crime, to make sure they get the tax money.

  • ||

    R C Dean, I am optimistic. I also think that in this country, at this time, more people are wanting a handout than are wanting smaller government. If the economy stays bad or worsens, Obama shoveling money at the problem will get votes. If the economy improves, he will get the credit and get votes. IMO, he will win re-election, barring some unforeseen circumstance not related to the economy.

  • ||

    Tony makes me miss gaius marius.

  • ||

    BDB, it's all depressing. One has to laugh at the absurdity if it all.

  • ||

    "Because they're going to legalize MJ just to get more money for the state, they'll probably legalize store-bought weed made by Phillip Morris but leave growing your own as a crime, to make sure they get the tax money."


    That is exactly what they will do. Look at how they did gambling. The states haven't legalized gambling. What they have done is given monopolies on gambling to whichever gaming company is willing to buy them off. Legalizing gambling means that you can go to the government authorized corrupt monopoly if you want to gamble. But it also means the government will act as enforcers for the monopoly so that the police will still kick down your door if you run a poker night for your friends and the feds will violate every international law imaginable to stop internet gambling.

    Legalized drugs will mean the same thing. You can buy Phillip Morris weed, but will still go to jail for growing it in your backyard.

  • ||

    Some douche from NM isn't going to change that.

    Very true, but hell, it's better than what we've had for the past 21 years. Maybe things won't suck as much for 4 years, even though at the end of that terms the free pony lobby will be showing him the door (assuming he'll actually be any different).

  • BDB||

    "Legalized drugs will mean the same thing. You can buy Phillip Morris weed, but will still go to jail for growing it in your backyard."

    Yup. And the PM weed will probably take about six joints just to get a buzz.

    But hey, they finally managed to get homebrew beer legalized about forty some years after prohibition ended, so maybe in a few decades...

  • ||

    Face it, non-anarchists: the government will always do its best to take as much from the host as it can without killing it, and that's the way it is. Some douche from NM isn't going to change that.

    He might. So might Sanford. So might have Ron Paul. There are candidates worth supporting.

  • ||

    assuming he'll actually be any different

    And there we have it. Or, maybe one should say "assuming he will allowed to be any different by Congress".

  • ||

    And there we have it. Or, maybe one should say "assuming he will allowed to be any different by Congress".

    The power to veto in the hands of an honest small-government president would be truly awesome.

  • Boston||

    "Because they're going to legalize MJ just to get more money for the state, they'll probably legalize store-bought weed made by Phillip Morris but leave growing your own as a crime, to make sure they get the tax money."

    I know nothing about (growing) MJ, can't they tax the seeds?

  • ||

    Congress can easily override that veto. Congress, as a whole, is vastly more venal than one man (the President) can be.

  • perilisk||

    But can he out-act Alec Baldwin?

    Oh, wait, one letter off...

  • kinnath||

    If that is true, which it admittedly may be, then we are screwed no matter what because any politician no matter how committed will corrupted by the power of the Presidency.

    I have repeated a joke off and on that I heard several years ago:

    America is at that awkward stage; too late to work within the system; too early to start shooting people.

    It's not a funny as it used to be.

  • ||

    Congress can easily override that veto. Congress, as a whole, is vastly more venal than one man (the President) can be.

    Yeah, but that would be a fun show. Can you imagine the convulsive conniptions and public gyrations from the lefties?

  • ||

    FWIW, I have no faith in Sanford. He looks to me that he just got on the bus at the Slimy Old Pol stop.

  • ||

    Personally, I wish someone would run as a solid Democrat, Clinton-style and then run as for to the libertarian side as s/he could once elected, with a scorched earth policy in full effect. Just imagine an administration of nothing but 11th hour deregulations.

    That would be teh awesome. It would be like punking the entire political establishment.

    Oh shit, did I just invoke the demon Kutchner? NOOOOOOOOOO.....

  • ||

    You were responding to the entire quote, which implies you included pro life within your statements. You seem to be saying that anyone who is pro-life, anti-gambling, or beleives in the drug war does so only because some hillbilly preacher, which is an amazingly stupid thing to say. If that is not what you were saying, what the hell were you saying?

    You may not agree with those positions, with the exception of abortion I don't either. But you are moron if you think anyone who agrees with them does so based on some mindless religious views. Further, if you think Pat Robertson is representative of every religious person in the country, yes you are bigoted fuck.


    *bites tongue*

    If it was all too subtle for you to understand, I'll spell it out. If the GOP continues to kowtow to the religious right* they will continue to lose elections.

    * Yes, I equate "religious right" with unthinking, often uneducated Christian fundies. No, I'm not going to apologize for holding them in contempt.

  • Taktix®||

    If that is true, which it admittedly may be, then we are screwed no matter what because any politician no matter how committed will corrupted by the power of the Presidency.

    Bingo!

  • Xeones||

    Maybe you should stop letting your rhetoric get coopted by corporatist political parties

    Hey, a point! Yo, libertarians, we gotta trademark this SmallGovernment® shit so nobody else can say it! 'Cause unless we do that Tony says we can't... do... something, i don't know what, he's getting kind of incoherent.

  • T||

    America is at that awkward stage; too late to work within the system; too early to start shooting people.

    Claire Wolfe said it. The pessimistic among us are stockpiling guns and ammo because we think we're getting closer to next stage.

  • Taktix®||

    Claire Wolfe said it. The pessimistic among us are stockpiling guns and ammo because we think we're getting closer to next stage.

    And the system is declaring the aforementioned pessimistic as enemies -- further proof that we're getting closer to that stage.

  • kinnath||

    Claire Wolfe said it.

    I'm pretty good a remembering the unique and interesting thoughts of other people, but almost completely incapable of remembering who said or when it was said.

  • ||

    "If it was all too subtle for you to understand, I'll spell it out. If the GOP continues to kowtow to the religious right* they will continue to lose elections.

    * Yes, I equate "religious right" with unthinking, often uneducated Christian fundies. No, I'm not going to apologize for holding them in contempt."


    No one says you have to apologize. Your ignorance speaks for itself.

  • kinnath||

    And the system is declaring the aforementioned pessimistic as enemies -- further proof that we're getting closer to that stage.

    I like to remind people that the founding fathers committed acts of high treason and would have been executed using barbaric means had the colonies lost the revolutionary war.

  • alan||

    JW | April 21, 2009, 1:12pm | #

    Tony makes me miss gaius marius.


    Nah. Tony is a hoot. Remember the old SNL bit from the 80's Dana Carvey did where he was playing Frank Zappa and every other word was 'corp-uh-ra-tions' in a sincere, hound dog eyed, drone? Well, that's Tony.

    BTW, if you voted for the guy who supported TARP, and you bought the 'saving capitalism from itsself bullshit,' you can't go around calling the pure porceline teacup of Libertarianism black when you are a dark souled kettle, i. e. a corporate shill yourself.

  • matt2||

    John, are you really going to argue that the religious right is a bastion of independent thought, made up of a bunch of people who just happened to arrive at the same conclusion (worldview, I believe, in fundie speak)?

    Really?

    That is about as untenable as a position gets.

  • alan||

    Religion is entirely secondary in my opinion:

    Sanford, not only acceptable, but I would enthusiasticaly support him.

    Palin, no enthusiasm, but i would vote for her given the opposition.

    Huckabe, fuck no. He is a fiscal liberal, and an anti-libertarian coummunitarian, so I would strongly oppose him if he got the nomination.

  • kinnath||

    Nah. Tony is a hoot.

    After spending a couple days in a thread over at Salon, I can testify that Tony is fairly bright for a liberal ;-)

  • alan||

    Typing with my big toe so i can read the book I'm holding without getting out of a lounging postion, so if any one wants to correct my spelling errors, be my guest. The position doesn't pay well, though.

  • alan||

    After spending a couple days in a thread over at Salon, I can testify that Tony is fairly bright for a liberal ;-)

    Can you bring back some fun examples? I'm in a snickery mood.

  • ||

    A Republican ticket of Johnson / Flake would be a dream ticket for me. I'm not sure that it could happen with them both being from the southwest

  • kinnath||

    I was in a bad mood and made a few inflamatory remarks (wyzzyrdd is a very, very old handle from the early days of Salon when it was actually worth paying the annual subscription)

    Wyzzyrdd represents the sheer stupidity of trying to engage Republicanism

    What in Christ's name could have led Wyzzyrdd to imagine that the synaptic impulses dancing around in his head constitute an "opinion" that needs to be shared with others?

    Move to France if you want French health care. (copied from one of my posts)

    I wouldn't trust most government agencies to take care of my dogs, let alone my wife or children. (me again)

    Let's face it, your average tea-bagger is pushing the limits of his intellectual capacity in trying to convert oxygen to carbon dioxide. They are incapable of conjuring up a single observation that isn't drawn straight from the toilet of Republican talk radio, and should be treated accordingly.

    -- david-smith

    Apparently dave doesn't like me very much ;-)

  • ||

    Congress can easily override that veto. Congress, as a whole, is vastly more venal than one man (the President) can be.

    Uh... no? 2/3 is not easily.

  • ||

    Apparently dave doesn't like me very much ;-)

    Or me. Compared to the Iraq protests I've been to, the tea parties were tame --- in terms of raging psycopaths and morons making the rest of us look bad, I mean.

  • ||

    BTW, if you voted for the guy who supported TARP, and you bought the 'saving capitalism from itsself bullshit,' you can't go around calling the pure porceline teacup of Libertarianism black when you are a dark souled kettle, i. e. a corporate shill yourself.

    Both major parties are corrupted by corporate influence. But only one major interlocutor (I'll be generous and add libertarians to the list of major interlocutors), liberals, are advocating for changes to the system that has corrupted them in this way. We have a much friendlier government now that it's run by Democrats, and at the top of the party is a guy who is at present getting some criticism from the LEFT because his anti-lobbyist policies may be counterproductively draconian. Say what you will about Barack Obama, but he was never an insider and wasn't in government long enough to be corrupted by corporate money. But even as he shows disappointing signs, you can bet liberals will be there questioning him and working from within to make the changes we want to see.

    Meanwhile libertarians are parroting rhetoric straight from the Reagan campaign. At what point does "small government" actually mean small government, since that ideal has never been used as anything but an excuse for pro-corporate-welfare policies? It's a depressingly small leap from "less government" to "more outsourcing of government work to overcharging corporate interests with agents on K Street."

  • ||

    When does confirmation bias become a pathology? See above.

  • alan||

    I suppose Mr Smith has some examples of demonstrations where more than a handful of slogans wre the rallying cries? WTO '99, maybe? Ha.

    What is really infuriating the left is that in their hearts when they saw the Teabaggers, they wondered, 'eww, is that what we look and sound like when we march in the streets? Only, smellier and filthy looking, instead?' Yeap!

  • Xeones||

    Tony, i take back everything bad i've written about you. Your last post was hilarious. I think you managed to nail every single talking point on that one. Folks, dare we hope that Cesar has come back to us?

  • kinnath||

    The democratic party is your nagging mother-in-law who only has your best interests at heart when she tries to get you to end your evil ways.

    The republican party is your smug, self-righteous uncle who runs the local chamber of commerce and won't lend you a dime, but has lots of bright ideas on how you can make some money (assuming you let him run things for you).

  • alan||

    Say what you will about Barack Obama, but he was never an insider and wasn't in government long enough to be corrupted by corporate money.

    So being on the Annenberg dole doesn't count?

    Annenberg, Ford Foundation, etc. are just means for leftist to suck off favored corporate interest while pretending to be pure.

  • ||

    36 million people worldwide turned out for 3000 protests of the Iraq War in the first 4 months of 2003 alone.

    Were there left-wing nuts present? Duh. Camera-philic code pinkers and all types--and, I might add, all colors.

    We were protesting a massive wrong that deserved all of the screaming bloody murder it got and then some.

    You guys (couple hundred thousand maybe) are still writing dissertations on just what exactly it was you were protesting.

  • cls||

    If Johnson stays away from 9/11 "Truthers," doesn't run off into wacko Bircher conspiracy theories, and hasn't published racist newsletters in his past, then he's better than Paul. I also doubt that Johnson is as much the social conservative (read anti-liberty) as Paul.

  • ||

    When does confirmation bias become a pathology? See above.

    What's the name of the fallacy when you call everything you don't agree with a fallacy, regardless of whether it is, as if you just had a class in logic and wanted to try out a new vocab word? Let's just call it the libertarian fallacy.

  • Geotpf||

    I still can't see how libertarians (small or big L) win the presidency, or even many governors/senators.

    The Libertarian Party itself is a complete basket case. They have a current opportunity to step up if they weren't crazy lunatics and willing to moderate their stances a bit, but they are crazy lunatics that are unwilling to moderate their stances at all, so they will remain on the sidelines forever and ever. They are completely unwilling to do what is needed to be done before they can actually win elections (any elections).

    The Republican Party is now completely controlled (both in terms of voters and party bigwigs) by the religious wingnuts. All the social moderates are now Democrats, or at least indies. Anybody who isn't anti-gay marriage, pro-life, and heavily into the war on drugs will never win a primary at this point.

    Going to Democratic Party route is actually an easier path, but that's unlikely to draw libertarian(-lite) candidates, especially after the current economic crisis and Democratic governmental response.

  • creech||

    Even if the Lp were to "moderate" its stances, how would it live down its radical past stances? There would have to be a complete repudiation of its 35 years of platforms and positions. Not to mention that half the members would immediately walk out while those remaining would find it impossible to reconcile their beliefs with anything that resembles libertarianism. Those who wish to go the "moderate" route are pretty much going to have to start a new party with no baggage.

  • ||

    Libertarians are not prone to moderation. That's okay, but it means they'll forever be on the sidelines throwing rocks.

    Change in this country requires small pragmatic steps since there are so many competing interests--the nature of democracy. The entire point of, say, the first amendment, is to foster a free marketplace of ideas. If your ideas are better than others, they should spread and gain influence. (This is assuming some voices aren't louder just because they are better funded, but that's another debate.)

    So practically speaking what minority voices have to do is join one of the two major parties and influence it from within. I've suggested here that the GOP may not be that party for libertarians, partly because they have no track record of increasing liberty or reducing the size of government whatsoever, but mostly because it's both unprecedentedly corrupt and as a result gonna be out of national power for a generation.

  • ||

    What's the name of the fallacy when you call everything you don't agree with a fallacy

    Confirmation bias isn't a fallacy. It's a simple observation in your case.

    regardless of whether it is, as if you just had a class in logic

    A rejection of rhetorical logic is a fine position to take. You can't seem to employ it, so deride its validity when your opponents do.

    and wanted to try out a new vocab word?

    "Confirmation bias" is a phrase, not a vocabulary word. Words put together form a phrase. If they have both a noun and verb, they might form a sentence. And it's a sad day when having a large vocabulary is considered a negative. Would you like to slap books out of my hands and play "keep away" with my glasses?

    Let's just call it the libertarian fallacy.

    The only "libertarian fallacy" that over-indulging deliberately ignorant ideologues like you has any utility. I will stop committing it forthwith.

  • Craig||

    I will say this. When Obama is done in 8 years...

    Obama will be a one-term president. The ongoing economic catastrophe he inherited and is working hard to magnify will have Republicans back in power in four years, and may cost him the Congress in 2010.

    As for the Republican candidate in 2012, Johnson would be much better than Sanford from a libertarian perspective, but Sanford is less threatening to the establishment and far more appealing to the base.

    I could see Sanford as a Reagan type, talking a good game but doing little more than slowing down the runaway growth of government. Not much in other words, but a lot better than a Bush-league spender like Huckabee or an authoritarian like Perry.

    It amazes me when people are surprised that candidates like Ron Paul and Gary Johnson can get elected -- most Americans are moderately libertarian, and anyone who speaks with integrity about wanting to reduce government spending becomes an attractive candidate.

    The problem in the presidential race is that voters let the media and the "experts" tell them who the viable candidates are.

  • ||

    SugarFree,

    For libertarians to be lecturing anyone on their confirmation biases is just about the most ridiculous thing I can imagine. Same goes with the perennial favorite, the straw man.

  • ||

    Obama will be a one-term president. The ongoing economic catastrophe he inherited and is working hard to magnify will have Republicans back in power in four years, and may cost him the Congress in 2010.

    Care to make a wager? I've got $10,000 that says the GOP is and will remain a regional party incapable of winning national elections beyond their own gerrymandered swamps of idiocy.

  • Colonel_Angus||

    Tony, shut the fuck up.

  • ||

    "I could see Sanford as a Reagan type, talking a good game but doing little more than slowing down the runaway growth of government. Not much in other words, but a lot better than a Bush-league spender like Huckabee or an authoritarian like Perry."

    Or an airhead like Palin.

    We really need somebody who will reverse the socialism that Obama brings us. Maybe after the mess that Obama brings us, the public will be ready to elect somebody like Gary Johnson.

  • mark||

    I also doubt that Johnson is as much the social conservative (read anti-liberty) as Paul.

    That could win him quite a few votes. If Johnson were to answer all "social conservatism" questions with "the states have the right to decide for themselves" he could appeal to both sides. Hopefully.

    Ron Paul's pro-life stance always bothered me but not as much as your typical Republican's, because I doubt he would be too focused on stopping abortions at the federal level.

  • ||

    "I've suggested here that the GOP may not be that party for libertarians, partly because they have no track record of increasing liberty or reducing the size of government whatsoever, but mostly because it's both unprecedentedly corrupt and as a result gonna be out of national power for a generation."

    Neither is the Democratic Party a good home for libertarians because of their economic viewpoint. Also, the Democratic Party is every bit as corrupt as the Republican Party. There was probably no more corrupt couple in the White House than the Clintons.

  • ||

    Are we a little sensitive about the fate of the GOP, Colonel_Angus? Or is it you just don't like anyone interrupting your libertarian circle jerk?

    Must be the latter, because as I have been scolded many, many times, this is definitely not just a hangout for wingnut Republicans who smoke weed.

  • mark||

    And let me just bring the thread back to Reagan if I may, since he has been brought up several times already. What makes anyone here think Sanford would be any different from Reagan--talking about small government an awful lot but never actually getting around to working on it?

  • ||

    Regarding social liberties, what did Johnson do in that respect as governor of New Mexico?

  • ||

    There was probably no more corrupt couple in the White House than the Clintons.

    Really? I mean really? Not Nixon, not Bush II?

    Hate radio warps the mind.

  • ChrisO||

    I'd gladly vote for Johnson or Sanford over any of the other likely GOP candidates in 2012, which already looks like it's going to be a regular Clown College on the big-name side of the Republican primaries. Johnson is a longshot, but I think an outsider is going to have a better shot in 2012 than Ron Paul did last year.

  • ||

    "Really? I mean really? Not Nixon, not Bush II?"

    Filegate, Fostergate, Travelgate, Monicagate, sicking the IRS on their political opponents, Chinagate, Whitewatergate, Troopergate, Pardongate, stealing furniture out of the White House.

  • ||

    Really? I mean really? Not Nixon, not Bush II?

    Wilson wins.

  • ||

    Filegate, Fostergate, Travelgate, Monicagate, sicking the IRS on their political opponents, Chinagate, Whitewatergate, Troopergate, Pardongate,

    Wilson still wins.

    stealing furniture out of the White House.

    True, but that's just tacky.

  • ||

    Johnson is a longshot, but I think an outsider is going to have a better shot in 2012 than Ron Paul did last year.

    Alright, this might get me yelled at, but... Johnson and Sanford also seem more like Presidents. The way they look, speak, present themselves --- it's "presidential." I mean this in the most awful, most shallow sense of the word. But I also doubt either of them are going to start blabbering about the NWO and the NAFTA Superhighway. These cats have mainstream appeal.

    I love Ron Paul, but his shot at the Oval Office is nothing compared to these two, both of whom I think have a genuinely decent chance. Sanford, maybe, a very strong chance after Obama.

  • ||

    bookworm,

    Hate radio atrophies the mind. But you may be a lost cause. Looks like yours withered away sometime in the late 90s.

  • ||

    Filegate, Fostergate, Travelgate, Monicagate, sicking the IRS on their political opponents, Chinagate, Whitewatergate, Troopergate, Pardongate, stealing furniture out of the White House.

    My favorite is Bill donating his used boxers to charity and then claiming a charitable deduction at the value of $3 each off his taxes.

    Not a scandal by any stretch, but that is a BIG window into the guy's mind. H-o-lee fuck.

  • ||

    Really? I mean really? Not Nixon, not Bush II?

    It's too bad you weren't here during the primaries when you could have had the fortune of getting an education at the feet of our last house liberal, joe.

    Even he wouldn't deny how corrupt and power-mad those 2 are, particularly Hillary. And he *liked* Bill.

  • ||

    JW,

    What I do no is the vast majority of accusations against the Clintons were right-wing hyperbole or just pure made up bullshit. They really don't like being out of power. Can't wait to see what they come up for Obama.

    Oh wait, it's 3 months in and already he's a Muslim socialst terrorist pal who is lying about his place of birth.

  • ||

    What I do no is the vast majority of accusations against the Clintons were right-wing hyperbole or just pure made up bullshit.

    That's nice Tony, you go right on believing that they were just the victims of circumstance.

    They really don't like being out of power. Can't wait to see what they come up for Obama.

    No, no, they like being out of power. Frees up more time for at the beach.

    Tony's so cute; thinking that politics is a game of honor and sportsmanship. Oh right, only when Democrats play the game.

  • Colonel_Angus||

    Tony you sound fucking retarded trying to talk about corporatism. What the fuck do you think the Democrats are doing right now? They are giving free handouts to horribly unproductive businesses and wasting money on this fucking green fad. Government giving money to corporations and picking winners is corporatism. No difference from Republicans.

    I hope your hybrid batteries leak and combust.

  • Clemsonuee||

    Don't make fun of our state tree, or our flag. The Palmetto tree is a pretty good tree to build forts out of; at least back in the day. The fort used to defend Charleston was built out of it and was able to take a lot of damage because the tree is so soft. And don't get me started on state flags. Kentucky's flag is 2 men facing each other in a quite gay looking stance; Michigan's flag looks like it was designed by committee. It has a little bit of everything and makes no sense. Virginia's flag shows murder, or tyrannicide if it turns out you win the fight afterwords.

    Requiring 2/3's of Congress to make a veto may seems like a lot, but Sanford has managed to piss off the entire establishment during his time as Gov, and veto's are now pretty routine. I'm sure he has the ability to piss off all of Congress.

    That being said I like him as Gov and think he's the best we've had in a while (a midget jumping contest I know, but still).

  • ||

    Tony's so cute; thinking that politics is a game of honor and sportsmanship. Oh right, only when Democrats play the game.

    Don't change the subject. I'm perfectly well aware that politicians stretch the truth. But what you're saying is that they stretch the truth (or make up bullshit) and that you happily believe what they say.

    This is the Google age. If you still believe in nonsense that isn't true it's no one's fault but your own.

  • ||

    They are giving free handouts to horribly unproductive businesses and wasting money on this fucking green fad.

    I'm in favor of government subsidies to industry in certain cases. But the deciding factor on whether an industry is subsidized should not be whether they donate money to campaigns, but whether the product they provide does a service to people commonly. One could say all government bureaucracies were such entities, just on a complete scale (whose only shareholders are the people commonly).

    But that's all beside the point because you refuse to acknowledge established science, which is very convenient for your argument since it means you're not required to actually address the issue.

  • ||

    If you still believe in nonsense that isn't true it's no one's fault but your own.

    I haven't believed a word of either the Republican's or Democratc's platforms in decades.

    I just default to both parties are full of shit and as dishonest as surely as the sun coming up tomorrow. Saves a lot of time and I beat the averages on being right.

  • ||

    But that's all beside the point because you refuse to acknowledge established science, which is very convenient for your argument since it means you're not required to actually address the issue.

    It's sort of pathetic that you think you have the intellectual high ground. This isn't a message board full of Christian Conservatives. Most of the people on this board are either agnostic or atheist. You'll not find the FOX News Jesus Freak or the HuffPo "I believe in energy/consider myself more spiritual than religious" bullshit. Established Science? Seriously? You want to talk about Science? "Established Science," which is a bitch of a term if I ever heard one considering the malleable nature of truths garnered by way of a scientific method, is the product of a series of objective laws concerning an objective reality. The closest thing we have in politics to an objective, scientific political philosophy… is libertarianism.

    Here, you're the intellectual lightweight. We put up with your irrational antics, Tony, not the other way around.

  • ||


    I just default to both parties are full of shit and as dishonest as surely as the sun coming up tomorrow. Saves a lot of time and I beat the averages on being right.


    Again, this is the age of Google. There is no excuse for being liberated from facts. Politicians lie, but they don't all lie all the time. Fact checking is easier than ever in the history of the world. There just is no excuse for ignorance.

  • ||

    Solana,

    I'm referring to climate change and you're ranting about Jesus for some reason. I know most people here aren't theocratic wingnuts.

    The human brain is not wired for pure logic. It takes a lot of training to be able to parse facts objectively and to suppress fallacious tendencies such as confirmation bias.

    The closest thing we have in politics to an objective, scientific political philosophy… is libertarianism.

    This is really, really laughable. You can't discover objective facts by first trapping yourself in a framework of first principles you believe in by faith alone. Of course when libertarians don't have history on their side they have been shown to be perfectly willing to rewrite it. This mostly happens by selectively citing sources that help confirm what they already believe. Citing dissenting voices is only helpful if they're put into the context of all science. Same goes for economics. There was just a post supposedly describing a consensus of economists, but only listed libertarian-minded economists. This is unscientific.

    I apologize if I misunderstood your rather incoherent argument.

  • ||

    johnson is the only choice. i don't trust sanford, he'll turn into dubya the minute he gets a sniff at power!

    if conservatives are going to continually encourage the nanny state on the issue of drugs, they must consider that the same nanny state, for whom they have been cheerleading, is coming for their guns!

  • Elwar||

    Check out:
    http://www.garyjohnson2012.com

  • wizard of oz books||

    With many new announcement about the wizard of oz movies in the news, you might want to consider starting to obtain Wizard of Oz book series either as collectible or investment at RareOzBooks.com.

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