• VOTERS AND NONVOTERS: Although the turnout in last November's election exceeded some of the more dire predictions, only 53 percent of the 150 million voting-age citizens in fact went to the polls. Nonvoters won a plurality, with 47 percent, with Carter finishing a distant second with some 27 percent, followed by Ford with 25 percent. Libertarian presidential candidate Roger MacBride received approximately 180,000 votes nationwide, finishing behind Eugene McCarthy. The Libertarian Party received more votes nationally than any other third party, including the American Independent Party.
In its November 15 issue, Time interviewed some nonvoters, including Richard Deyo and Linda Abrams, both members of the Libertarian Law Council, and Sy Leon, founder of the League of Non-Voters and author of a recent book, None of the Above. Among the comments of nonvoters quoted by Time, Deyo said "I'm not apathetic about nonvoting. I'm emphatic about it." Leon said, "I don't vote because I don't want to force a second-class decision on my neighbors." Time also noted Leon's bumper-sticker which reads "The Lesser of Two Evils Is Evil" and the stickers which Abrams uses on her mail, "Don't Vote—It Only Encourages Them."
Apparently the views of the nonvoters have reached the editorial offices of the Los Angeles Times, which had previously editorialized against the "None of the Above" ballot reform proposal. In its election endorsements, the Times recommended that Los Angeles citizens vote for Leo Freund for a Municipal Court judgeship, although he had died a few weeks earlier, too late for his name to be taken off the ballot. The Times favored a vote for Freund's name because the only other candidate was unqualified. As the Times preferred, Freund's name outpolled his opponent, allowing Governor Brown to appoint a successor. In the absence of a qualified, principled candidate, we're pleased to see the willingness of Los Angeles voters to vote for someone who has no chance of taking office, rather than select the lesser of the evils.
• FREEDOM CONFERENCE: The California Libertarian Alliance is organizing The Future of Freedom Conference, the largest libertarian conference ever planned on the West Coast. The conference is scheduled for April 23-24, 1977 at the University of Southern California. The conference will explore libertarian futurology, with special emphasis on the fields of law, economics, technological developments, psychology, political transformation and science fiction. Confirmed speakers include such notables as Murray Rothbard, Nathaniel Branden, John Hospers and Robert LeFevre. Lowell Ponte and Manuel Klausner will act as moderators. Openings are available for those interested in conducting workshop sessions. For further information concerning the conference, contact Shawn Steel, 52 Sunset Ave., Venice, CA 90291, (213) 399-8311 or Dana Rohrabacher, (213) 747-2612.
• SPACE CONFERENCE: The American Astronautical Society and AIAA Technical Committee have announced a Conference on Industrialization and Colonization of Space, to take place in the San Francisco Bay Area from October 18-20, 1977. The conference will focus on commercial activities in space over the next ten years. Papers are sought in a variety of subject areas, including technical, space law, space community planning, and economic realities of space. Papers desired in the area of space law include the following topics: property rights in space, internal legal options for space colonies and rights of entrepreneurs in space commerce. A detailed "Call for Papers" is available from the Technical Program Chairman, Paul L. Siegler, EARTH/SPACE, INC., 4151 Middlefield Road, Palo Alto, CA 94303. Abstracts of 200 to 500 words should be sent to Siegler prior to May 1, 1977.
• PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Last month's editorial, "Get Big Brother Out of the Schools" and this month's "Trends" describe developments in Oregon where voters have refused to approve taxes to pay for public schools. Voters' hostility to school taxes has also resulted in the recent closing of public schools in Putnam, CN and Toledo, OH, and a number of other school districts may be facing similar situations.
In referring to John Bailey's excellent REASON article on voluntary education in our January editorial, we unfortunately misidentified the author. Our apologies to Mr. Bailey for this error.
• LOOMPANICS CATALOG: Loompanics Unlimited, publisher of a detailed index to the first six volumes of REASON (1968-1975) ($4 per copy), has recently issued its latest catalog offering a wide selection of self-liberation books at discount prices. Copies of the catalog are available for $1 from Loompanics Unlimited, Box 264, Mason, MI 48854.