Gary Johnson: 'I Always Thought Telling the Truth Would Rule the Day. And It Doesn't.'

The 2016 Libertarian presidential candidate on "Aleppo," Donald Trump's unexpected good points, and why Hillary Clinton's trolls were worse than Russian ones.

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"I always thought that honesty would rule the day. I always thought integrity would rule the day. I always thought that telling the truth would rule the day. And it doesn't," says Gary Johnson, the 2016 Libertarian presidential candidate and a two-time former governor of New Mexico, in an exclusive new interview with Reason.

Visiting Washington, D.C. in late February to speak at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in late February, Johnson talks candidly with Nick Gillespie about his presidential run, which mixed memorable gaffes ("Aleppo") with historic triumphs (he pulled 3.27 percent of the final vote, more than tripling the best of any previous LP candidate). "I'm done with elected political office," he avers, even as he discusses his ongoing work with Our America Initiative, a nonprofit dedicated to training libertarian candidates and promoting libertarian positions on immigration, sentencing reform, occupational licensing, and more; his involvement in CB1, a hedge fund devoted to publicly traded marijuana investments; and why he's done with running for office.

Johnson also weighs in of the presidency of Donald Trump, whom he said was appealing to racist sentiments during the 2016 campaign. Trump's tone, says the former governor, remains absolutely awful, but some of his policies, such as those regarding regulation and corporate taxes, are worth celebrating. When asked whether Hillary Clinton would have been a better president than Trump, Johnson says, "I think we would have kind of a myriad of other issues with Hillary that would probably be equally as bad…. I think it would be horrible if Hillary would have been president, but I think Trump's got his horrible also."

Edited by Mark McDaniel. Cameras by Todd Krainin and McDaniel.

"Moon Love" by Ketsa is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 4.0.

Photo Credit: Christopher Brown/Polaris/Newscom.

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THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. PLEASE CHECK QUOTATIONS AGAINST AUDIO FOR ACCURACY.

Nick Gillespie: So, you are in D.C., and we're talking before you go talk at CPAC, the annual convention of conservative action people in D.C. Why are you speaking at CPAC?

Gary Johnson: Well, I think it's an opportunity to give a Libertarian perspective on things. Now, I'm going to be on a panel when it comes to economics and tax policy, so that is a Trump plus, the reduction of taxes.

Gillespie: Okay, well I was going to ask, what do you think about Trump so far? I mean, you ran against Trump, and you did historically well for a Libertarian Party candidate against Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. Trump's been in office over a year. What is your evaluation?

Johnson: Well, he has not told the truth. Building a wall across the border is crazy. Now, he did say he was going to build a wall across the border, but he said he wasn't going to involve himself in states' rights, or he was going to stand up for states' rights. And here we have Jeff Sessions that has come out very vocally against marijuana. Ultimately, that may lead to legislation that will not make marijuana a Class I narcotic, which is really a good thing.

Gillespie: So those are two things, though, where Trump's bluster, or his bark is worse … He's got a lot of bark, but no bite. Because we haven't actually started building the border wall, and Sessions is saying 'I'm going to … Let's start looking at these states that have legalized marijuana.' But nothing has happened yet.

Johnson: Nothing has happened. And, like I say, it may lead to legislation. On the Dreamers, hey, here it is. We may have legislation that clears all this up, but his rhetoric is horrible.

Gillespie: Are you looking for a position in his cabinet?

Johnson: No.

Gillespie: But no, I mean, in a weird way, Trump is actually delivering the opposite of what he promised. There's no wall, we may get the … Dreamers may be legalized, and pot may be descheduled or rescheduled.

Johnson: But, that isn't something that he is advocating, but as a consequence of what he's doing, that may actually happen.

Gillespie: You mentioned, on economics or on tax policy, obviously, he and the Republicans put through a major tax plan, do you like that tax plan? And how does it stack up to what you were arguing for on the campaign?

Johnson: Well, that corporate tax rates lower to 20%, that's a positive. I was advocating zero corporate tax, which I think would be amazing, and that individuals, that we would do away with income tax. That we would abolish the IRS. I just think that that would have an enormous positive impact on all of our lives, including being able to fund government.

Gillespie: And that would have been replaced by essentially a national sales tax.

Johnson: Well, in … What I advocated was, was that we switch then to a consumption tax, and I held up the fair tax as a model for how you would or could accomplish that.

Gillespie: And certainly Trump's, or the Republican tax reform, whatever else you can say about it, it really does build in bigger and bigger deficits, and it doesn't simplify things very much.

Johnson: Yeah, and that's the half … What about spending? That's the … If you want to hold an optimism for Trump and the future is, is that he would actually at some point address spending. But he hasn't. Spending has, as you know, increased.

So what difference does it make whether it's a Democrat or a Republican, and that's where I come in, is I'm a Libertarian.

Gillespie: What about regulations? Do you think Trump has been good?

Johnson: Oh, absolutely. Absolutely.

Gillespie: You know, and particularly as a western state governor. He's pulled back the EPA a little bit. Is that … I mean, talk in relation to both what Trump has done, but also your experience as a western state governor, with what? New Mexico has basically more federal lands than, as a percentage of its mass, than almost any other state, right?

Johnson: Well, the western states have that phenomenon, and west of the … So here it is, Washington D.C., east of the Mississippi. There is absolutely no comprehension whatsoever of what public lands actually are. Well, west of the Mississippi, you've got all these public lands, and they pass laws regarding public lands.

Like access to public lands, which you and I, we look at that, and we think well, yeah, you should have access to public lands. Well it's not even possible to have access to … Because they're laid out in checkerboard fashion.

So leaving those decisions to the states, the deregulation if you will, getting the federal government off the backs of states that are well meaning? Yeah, you bet. That's a good thing. That's a good thing.

Gillespie: What about at the FDA? Trump, you know, his appointee seems to have pulled back from some of the over regulation of medical devices and pharmaceuticals.

Johnson: All positive. Companies are not going to be able to sell products that are dangerous to the public, because there are attorneys out there. And I think attorneys do a much better job of policing than the federal government does.

Gillespie: But then you also mentioned …

Johnson: But here it is. Trump has this press conference where 'I am going to challenge the pharmaceutical industry to come up with a non-addictive substitute for opioids.' Hello! What about Cannabis? Marijuana? Come on. So there's a deafness that exists, but …

And, all of this deregulation that is, in fact happening … And I only guessed at this, because I don't know the specifics. But I wish that he would articulate what he's doing and why. That, I think is a very important part of governing.

Gillespie: Yeah. Talk about … You mentioned his rhetoric as being, you know, awful and divisive. How does his failure to kind of articulate either larger principles when it comes to deregulation, or … You know, on that level, he seems to be mostly silent. He deregulates stuff but doesn't explain why it's good. But then, when it comes to things like immigration, he's over the top, and you know, people coming from 'shithole countries,' blah, blah, blah.

How does his rhetoric influence your views of him?

Johnson: Well, they influence my views on him in a very negative way. I mean, gosh, getting elected President of the United States, come on, we all recognize that he has an agenda, and saw that up front. Well how about telling us why there are benefits to this?

Now, when it comes to immigration, when it comes to marriage equality, a woman's right to choose, I … You know what, I don't buy into his arguments at all. But at least he perhaps tries arguing those points. The deregulation part, the getting into the weeds policy-wise, you know I kind of found that interesting as governor of New Mexico, and yes, I think I did an incredible … I think I turned the whole system on its head, but I was upfront about everything it was that I was doing, so my legacy is 'Well, gee, I didn't necessarily agree with anything Johnson did, but you know what? He had reasons for it, and we understood what those reasons were.'

Gillespie: Do you think Trump overall, is better than Hillary Clinton would have been as president?

Johnson: I think we would have kind of a myriad of other issues with Hillary that would probably be equally as bad, and that was something that I said during the election. So one or the other, and it would have been horrible … I think it would be horrible if Hillary would have been president, but I think Trump's got his horrible also.

Gillespie: As somebody who was involved in the 2016 presidential campaign, do you have any take on whether or not Russian agents of influence were screwing around with you, or with the vote totals? That seems to be a lingering shadow.

Johnson: Okay, it's okay … It's not okay for the Russians to do it, but it's okay for Hillary Clinton to do it? There's an article that appeared—

Gillespie: But I agree with that, but …

Johnson: Let me speak to you about what happened to me. Not that you're not aware. About six weeks to go in the campaign, The New York Times comes out with an article that says 'Watch out, Hillary. Johnson is garnering more millennial support than you are.' That was on a Friday. On a Saturday, 200 … I'll say 200 Internet trolls descended on my space, and now you had 20 news organizations, call it fake news if you want, but you had 20 pop ups that appeared. 'Here's what Johnson has said.'

And if you read any of them, you probably read a few, your takeaway was that this is the dumbest guy that's ever walked the planet. And at that point, I stopped Googling myself. And to this day, I don't Google myself. I don't look at what people are saying about me.

Gillespie: So you assume that was Russian bots? Or was that our people, or …

Johnson: There were articles written that Hillary Clinton spent $50 million to discredit me. Now, was it $50 million? We spent $12 million on our campaign, that's what we raised. So did it effect the election, did it effect me? Well, like I say, Google me today, and your takeaway is going to be 'It's good we didn't have that guy.'

Gillespie: So, it's … I mean, what you're saying is that, or if I may, are you saying that the question of Russian influence is less important than the ways in which people were … Everybody was trying to—

Johnson: Everybody was trying to manipulate this. And when it comes to the Internet, I mean, you pay for those, where does your website pop up? Well, if you're talking about $50 million, gee, the first 20 things you're going to read are going to be potentially subsidized by that $20 million.

When it comes to the Russian influence, I just read where they, among other things, just promoted Bernie Sanders. Well, that would have been … That was a negative … That was a negative for Hillary Clinton.

Gillespie: But she also was bringing her own kind of baggage to the party, right? Well, let me ask you, if it was a question of Hillary Clinton being able to say, 'Okay, flying monkeys, go destroy Johnson. Here's $50 million, here's $20 million.'

Would that mean that you would want to limit the ways in which people can spend their campaign money?

Johnson: No, but it is … So, back to policy, back to getting elected, being in office. What potentially could be done to fix that? Nick, I can't tell you what potentially could be done to fix that, but there are ideas out there. And certainly the best ideas launched would be, in this case, Facebook themselves, Twitter themselves dealing with this. But looking at governments, and even as a Libertarian, look, a takeaway from reading Hayek is, if you're an elected official, if you're in the public policy arena, you should always be looking to improve things. Always, improve things.

So having been governor of New Mexico, that was always my task.

Gillespie: What, say on the 2016 campaign a bit. Obviously, people remember the Aleppo moment. Do you … How do you feel about that now? You know, it's been a while, and it's in the rear view mirror. Were there moments, was that a turning point do you think in your campaign? Yes or no, how do you feel about it?

Johnson: Well, that was … It was going to happen. I would hypothesize that it happened to Trump about 150 times. All right, well okay, it happens to me. Well, what do you do when something like that happens? Well, we had … They each had a billion eight. So when it came to goffs, they had the firepower to come back.

Gillespie: Do they … Could I just ask, you mean 'gaffs', right, not 'goffs'?

Johnson: Thank you, I learned something.

Gillespie: Okay, this is a gaff. This is a—

Johnson: So I said 'goff.' See? There we go. That could be a testament to my intellect right there.

Gillespie: Yeah. But basically they were able to bounce back, and it is … What …

Johnson: So for us, immediately, within days of that, I did a major foreign policy speech in Chicago. And guess what? Nobody carried it. Well, you know, our firepower was very limited. But we did all the right things. And it was going to happen. Gaffs happen.

Gillespie: Yeah.

Johnson: I always thought that honesty would rule the day. I always thought that integrity would rule the day. I always thought that telling the truth would rule the day. And it doesn't.

Gillespie: Do you hate America, then?

Johnson: I don't hate America, I hate—

Gillespie: Do you hate Americans?

Johnson: I hate politics. I think political office today is toxic.

Gillespie: So are you, you know, here you are, it's whatever it is, it's late February, early March of 2018, you're speaking at CPAC. Are you thinking about running again in the future?

Johnson: No. No.

Gillespie: Absolutely not?

Johnson: No. I'm done. I'm done with elected political office. But my political arm, Our America, we're going to dedicate ourselves to well, how do you change this? And don't you have to vote for another party to change this? And so Libertarians, I think really have an opportunity here.

And the opportunity rests solely in having really good candidates, and having some really good candidates win.

Gillespie: And the Our America Initiative is your non-profit that looks at a variety of policy issues. And is it affiliated with the Libertarian Party? Are you still … I mean, you were a two-term governor as a Republican, you renounced your Republican-ness, or your membership. Are you still fully enmeshed in the Libertarian Party? Or, how do you think about party policies?

Johnson: Well, by enmeshed, I do think the Libertarian Party emulates the feelings of most Americans, and I summarized that during the 2016 election by saying most Americans, I think, are fiscally conservative and socially, they don't care. Socially liberal. You should be able to make decisions in your own life, as long as those decisions don't adversely affect others. I think most people feel that way.

The Republican Party doesn't emulate that, and the Democratic Party certainly doesn't emulate that either, when it comes to dollars and cents. Neither of them do when it comes to dollars and cents, right now.

Gillespie: Right. And foreign policy, too. They seem to be pretty similar, right?

Johnson: It's all lock step. And you know, the Constitution, the Founding Fathers, they never visualized, or never believed that there would be political parties. And if there were going to be political parties, that might be the demise of our republic.

Gillespie: What … In terms of foreign policy in the presidential kind of mess of issues, or mass of issues … Obviously, terrorism like bothers people in a way, but did you find that people … You know, were they responsive to your vision of a non-interventionist foreign policy, or of having a defense department as opposed to a war department?

Johnson: No. No, they weren't. I think everybody … And that's the fear, that politics really are people running for office, that 'Look, drugs are the scourge of the earth. Terrorism is the scourge of the earth. Afghanistan is the scourge of the … Iran is the scourge of the earth. Elect me, and I will protect you from all of these threats and evils.'

And that's what politics is, and I've never been a part of that.

Gillespie: Well, one of the things you used to say a lot during the campaign was 'Google Johnson.' You're no longer doing that, you said. But you also used to say 'Uber everything.'

Johnson: Uber everything.

Gillespie: Like you were trying to get Uber for everything. Do you still believe in that?

Johnson: Yes.

Gillespie: Will that carry America forward in progress?

Johnson: I absolutely believe that, that whatever it is that you do in your life, if you can directly deal with the end user and get paid such, that's a good thing. And I look at Uber as a model for that. You've got drivers that own their own cars, and I realize that's in not all the cases, but maybe it is. But you know, you own your own cars, you're your own boss, you can do what you want. You give a piece to Uber because they've arranged to do all this.

Well, that could be a model for plumbers, that could be a model for lawyers, that could be a model for … you name it. That's … I do ultimately think that that's the way things are going to evolve. Eliminate the middleman, let me get paid the $75 an hour instead of getting paid $25. And now we raise all sorts of liability issues, but insurance can change, that a person becomes insured from a liability standpoint to be able to do anything.

If you did away with income tax? Holy cow, you could go help your neighbor, and get paid to help your neighbor. You know, your neighbor needs help moving some boxes. Hey, I'll pay you 20 bucks to do that. Well, today, if you take that 20 bucks, technically you're in violation of the law, because you're not going to claim that as income.

Gillespie: One of the issues that was particularly front-and-center to you was drug legalization, particularly pot legal … Or the end of pot prohibition, marijuana prohibition. You're involved with some marijuana companies. What's going on in that area of your life, your business life?

Johnson: Well, currently I'm involved with CB-1, which they do have a website, but it's a hedge fund that's buying stock of publicly-traded companies in the marijuana space. Very exciting, and I do believe that it could be one of the biggest investment opportunities in the next decade. Because 65% of Americans now support legalizing marijuana. Maybe it's not sixty-five, but it's the highest that it's ever been before. It's going to happen, and it's a positive.

And I say a positive, because the alternatives from a medical standpoint, opioids, a replacement for opioids. And on the alcohol front, I haven't had a drink of alcohol in thirty years. I do use marijuana occasionally, and it's much, much safer.

Gillespie: Let me ask you, so you would drink and you would get drunk, right?

Johnson: I would drink, and why have one beer when you could have three and catch a buzz. And then three beers the next morning really had an effect. For me, anyway. For me. I have no problem with anybody drinking, as long as they're not doing harm to others.

Gillespie: But then, so with pot, what does pot do for you that's better than drinking? And I understand that there's the larger arguments, which I mostly agree with to the extent that I'm aware of them, that pot is less dangerous, it screws up your mind less, it doesn't hurt your liver, you don't have to smoke it anymore, but do you get high when you use pot?

Johnson: Well, I do, and I've always said that it's kind of, it's a mind Rolf.

Gillespie: Okay, Rolfing. Now we're going back to what, the 70s, weird massage thing.

Johnson: Yeah, kind of a brain Rolf, if you will. Rearrange the bookshelves, in a good way, not a bad way. That's my experience. And for anybody that has problems with substances, and really, there's a very small amount of people that do have problems with marijuana. That's going to always exist.

Gillespie: Did you … What was … And you see pot or marijuana-derived products as one possible way of lessening the reliance on opioids, whether we're talking about heroin or we're talking about prescription drugs?

Johnson: Absolutely, absolutely.

Gillespie: When you were governor of New Mexico, what were the drugs that you were most often dealing with, that were causing real social harm, not simply because of their—

Johnson: Well, there's the perception and there's the reality. And the perception was, is that when I was the governor of New Mexico, that drugs were the scourge of the Earth. Including marijuana. Well, the reality, and I'm governor of New Mexico. Reality. Half of what we spend on law enforcement, half of what we spend in the courts, and half of what we spend in the prisons is drug related. Do you know, that in 2017, the number one arrest offense in the United States was still, is still marijuana? And I'll bet that's the case in 2018.

So with all this talk about legalization, that is still the fact. And it's wrong. It's wrong to criminalize an activity that, like I say, you're not doing any harm to anyone, arguably other than yourself. Should that be an arrestable offense? I don't believe so.

Gillespie: Can you sketch out the scenario as you see it, where pot is now kind of … I mean, it is legal at the state level in a handful of states, and Massachusetts is actually going to joining the pot club, the marijuana club later on this year with recreational legalization. It's in dozens of states, medical marijuana is legal. What happens next? Because there is going to be a showdown, isn't there, between the federal government, or federal laws and state laws.

Johnson: The one thing that the Federal government needs to do is to de-schedule marijuana as a Class I Narcotic, alongside of heroin. Give me a break. So there is all this conjecture, there is all this hypothesis of what are the benefits of marijuana? Well, Nick, there's no research happening in the United States, it's happening in other countries.

But the research needs to take place, and will take place, if marijuana is de-scheduled as a Class I Narcotic. So a very simple step for the Federal government. Declassify marijuana. The President of the United States could order the Surgeon General to do that.

Gillespie: We're a week or so after a particularly disturbing mass shooting. I guess to say one is more disturbing than the other is wrong. Seventeen people were killed in a school in Florida. Did you have to deal with that kind of advance in … And how do you deal with that as a governor or as a chief executive, and is there a good solution to this type of violence?

Johnson: What I said numerous times during the presidential campaign, and as governor, look, we need to be open to a discussion on how you keep guns out of the hands of mentally ill individuals. To say anything other than that would be stupid. So an open mind on how do we deal with this. But Nick, I have not heard any suggestions that would actually bring about real change.

President Trump's saying that we should arm teachers. As governor of New Mexico, after Columbine, I was asked what do you do to prevent a further Columbine? And my answer was look, you're not going to want to hear the answer, but you would lessen the impact of any shooter, active shooter, by requiring that teachers be armed.

And I'm not advocating that, but yesterday now, or this morning, I read that 75% of teachers don't want to be armed. That means that 25% would actually arm themselves if allowed to do that. Wouldn't that, and again, I'm not saying this is the solution, but here is a concrete way of deterring these things from happening, these active shootings from happening in the future.

If 25% of teachers are carrying, to me that would be a deterrent to a lot of … I think it would be a deterrent. Maybe it doesn't turn out that way, but I have to feel … Forget about the actual crossfire that would occur, forget about an actual gunfight that's going to occur. Think about the fact that well, gee, I'm not going to do the school thing anymore, or I'm not going to … Because people that contemplate this kind of thing aren't going to think about schools anymore, because I'm going to end up dead.

And many of them don't care anyway. So that's why it's not a solution to it, but it certainly would have to be a deterrent.

Gillespie: Do you, you know, in a broader sense, do you feel like even since the 2016 campaign, has the ability of America to kind of have these conversations, is it growing, or is it shrinking, or is it staying the same? Is it always a struggle? I mean, because in a lot of ways …

Johnson: Maybe it is growing. Maybe it is growing, because looking at the outrage over Sessions and what he's saying regarding marijuana. Well, because of what he's doing when it comes to marijuana, which is wanting to crack down on marijuana. In fact, it may turn out to be the opposite. May turn out to be that way.

Gillespie: Well, you know, let's end on this note. One of the things that I found genuinely interesting, apart from generally agreeing with your policy positions, it was your demeanor as a politician. To say like honesty, let's talk about this stuff. You're also a baby boomer, right? What year were you born?

Johnson: '53.

Gillespie: Okay, so you're about 10 years younger, or six or seven years younger than Trump or Hillary, all of that kind of, you know, Bernie Sanders. These were early baby boomers, and they were all incredibly negative and cynical about America. You know, Trump talked about American carnage in his inauguration speech. Hillary Clinton was talking about how everything was kind of going to hell in a hand basket. Bernie Sanders was like, I mean, he lived in a world that was like out of a Little Rascals short, like Hooverville in black and white.

You were optimistic. What undergirded your optimism, and what keeps it going, in the face of situations where, you know, people are saying 'oh, my God they're killing kids, the economy's in the crapper, China's taking over'?

Johnson: One of the offshoots of Trump, and all … It really hasn't happened, but the talk of cutting back, and entitlements need to be reformed, which Trump isn't touching. But because of his rhetoric I think now, for example, we're seeing companies step up and actually doing more. There's more of a … Seems to me today that there's more of a corporate responsibility that's rising to the top. Well, that's the private sector that's rising to the top. So I remain optimistic. And if government weren't there to provide all the services that it provides, we as Americans would be filling in that gap. We would be filling it in completely. I'm completely in that belief.

Gillespie: And we would be buzzed on top of it.

Johnson: We would be happy. By buzz? Yeah, so we would be buzzed.

Gillespie: Okay, so it could be a natural high, or it could be an artificial high, but we'd be in a better place. Usually when government yields, freedom—

Johnson: And I Uber everything, so I'm making a whole lot more money, I'm able to do things that I haven't been able to do before because I'm making more money. One of the things that Trump said was that by repatriating, which I believe. If we would repatriate all that corporate money that's overseas, that we would see that money invested in the United States. Well, it's happened. So, that's another positive on the Trump side.

Gillespie: Well, we will leave it there. We've been talking with Governor Gary Johnson, two-term governor of New Mexico. A two-time Libertarian Party presidential candidate. Governor, thanks so much for talking.

Johnson: Nick, thanks.

Gillespie: For Reason, I'm Nick Gillespie.

NEXT: Trooper Stops Driver Twice Within 3 Hours, Gropes Her for No Apparent Reason

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  1. Truth is treason in the empire of lies.

    1. I’m excited to see how quickly this thread descends into hatefucking.

      1. I do love to laugh, which is half the reason I read the comments. It’s so funny because it’s so true.

  2. Just once, can Reason run a photo of Gary that doesn’t make him look like King of the Doofus People?

    Or…wait…is that just what his face looks like all the time?

    That said, I still feel like a GayJay Presidency would have been monumentally better than the other options. It’s too bad that only murderboners get elected.

    1. If you don’t project power, why become president?

      1. Good question, lord knows it’s not to make effective changes. For that you’d need to capture the legislature. Still, it’s a start I guess. *shrug*

        A doofus President is still better than a blowhard or a harpy.

        1. They were all doofuses, it’s just that Gary wasn’t as good at hiding it.

    2. GayJay should grow a giant Sam Elliott mustache, give himself some machismo!

  3. “Christ, what an asshole.” – Citizen X

    1. “Citizen X, what an asshole.” – Christ

      1. I need to stop this now, or else he’ll think that I don’t actually think he’s a cool poppa.

        1. He knows it’s all in good fun.

            1. Millenial denialism is so hot right now.

  4. “I always thought that honesty would rule the day. I always thought integrity would rule the day. I always thought that telling the truth would rule the day. And it doesn’t,” says Gary Johnson

    Gary, Gary, Gary. Why ever would you think this? You’ve been in politics for years!

    1. New Mexico is just too friendly a place to learn about the real world.

      1. I suspect what remains of the Native American population in that state might feel otherwise. Then again, Casinos!

      2. I thought the official drug of New Mexico was meth. Are you saying it’s actually ecstacy?

    2. Worse, he had the nerve to call himself a Libertarian while rejecting large parts of libertarian ideology. So he knew honesty doesn’t win the day, just from having secured the nomination!

      1. Getting involved in politics at all is hard to rationally reconcile with libertarian philosophy. This is why libertarian-leaning private citizens are (present company excepted) eminently sensible people, while libertarian politicians (especially Libertarian politicians) are almost always raging loons.

        1. That’s certainly true; Back in the 90’s I ran for State Rep in Michigan, just to fill the ticket, not seriously.

          I’d wake up in a cold sweat from nightmares where by some freak accident I won. Normal libertarians do NOT want to hold office.

      2. OMG! He’s not a purist! Gotta join the Libertarians for Trump now!

      3. EXACTLY!!!….When I head him & Weld campaign I was shocked at how much they sounded like the DEMs & GOPers!….So, I did the honorable thing & voted for Rand Paul via write-in!

      4. ‘I was going to be President I don’t know why – but then I got high, then I got high, then I got high’.

    3. Damn it. You beat me to it. Though mine was going to read: “Gary, Gary, Gary… come on, buddy. You can’t be serious.”

  5. You did, Gary? Did you pay attention to political history in your education at all?

    If you did, then you should be aware of the difference between “should” and “does”.

  6. Johnson: […] So when it came to goffs, they had the firepower to come back.

    Gillespie: Do they … Could I just ask, you mean ‘gaffs’, right, not ‘goffs’?

    … Johnson, stop being baked during interviews.

      1. He secretly wrote My Immortal.

        1. He secretly wrote My Immortal.

          At least it wasn’t Eye of Argon

      2. He meant coif.

        Robby’s not the only Reasoner with mesmerizing hair.

  7. Gary Johnson: ‘I Always Thought Telling the Truth Would Rule the Day.’

    Ha!

  8. “I always thought that honesty would rule the day.”

    “But just in case, I had a running mate who vouched for Hillary’s integrity, so maybe dishonesty doesn’t work either.”

    1. Hillary also made Johnson run a neoliberal campaign opposed to religious liberty and libertarianism

  9. “I’m done with elected political office,”

    Moar like: “Elected political office is done with YOU”, GayJay

  10. “Its an opportunity to give a Libertarian perspective on things…”

    So he’ll be introducing David Boaz to speak? jk

    Look I love GayJay, and certainly prefer his low tax/low spending, anti-drug war, anti-war liberal Republicanism compared to Clinton or Trump. But he’s a terrible advocate for libertarianism. I wish Larry Sharpe was speaking instead, he’s a much better advocate, and is much more articulate.

    1. When was Gary ever anti-war? He endorsed humanitarian war and a permanent base in Afghanistan in a 2012 interview to the Weekly Standard. I’ve never heard Gary ever speak competently about foreign policy. And that probably hurt him

      1. He called for an end to America’s involvement in Afghanistan in 2016: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g4V9z4tpAcg

        Anti-war might’ve been too strong of a term. Anti-war as compared to Clinton and Trump (who has so far continued our overseas involvements). Agreed that Johnson wasn’t very competent talking about Foreign Policy and that definitely hurt him, especially his Aleppo and “can’t name a World Leader” moments.

    2. Politics and Libertarianism are not mutually exclusive, but there is a problem: politics demands dealing with common denominators, and its not negotiable. And where america is concerned, protestants are still [barely] that commonality. You won’t know it by our media – it just shows up at the ballot box with regularity where progs don’t own the media to beat the populace into submission 365 days a year like NY or LA do. Gary didn’t need to believe anything protestant, but he did need to recognize their existence somehow. His campaign seemed to indicate zero awareness of them, so he never arrived. By contrast, the horrid creature we know as Hillary did at least put up a picture frame of “our values” when running for senate that protestants could fill with their imaginations despite her being a staunch enemy of their beliefs where policy was concerned. Gary is clueless… and he lost.
      I doubt the candidacy of Petersen could have ever gotten the nod in 2016, but Libertarians might have something to learn there.

  11. To get past the stereotype of Libertarians as Republicans who smoke pot, the LP nominated a Republican who *dealt* pot.

    They also thought there were not enough Leslie Nielsen lookalikes in politics, so they nominated Weld as well.

    1. How dare you, sir, compare Leslie with Bill. I don’t care if it is based on looks, you will not ruin the Naked Gun movies or Airplane for me.

      1. What can I say, I’m a superficial guy.

        This is Bill Weld.

        This is Leslie Nielsen.

        Strange but true…I tried to get a picture with both of them in it, but I couldn’t find such a picture. Strange, no?

      2. Should have gone with a Nielsen/Simpson ticket.

  12. Having read this article: Gary, you are not articulate. I agree with him, but a lot of the things he’s saying?the way he speak, really, how this transcript portrays him?he is the dumbest person ever. I’m not saying he’s stupid, but the way he talks sure doesn’t make him sound smart.

  13. Having read this article: Gary, you are not articulate. I agree with him, but a lot of the things he’s saying?the way he speak, really, how this transcript portrays him?he is the dumbest person ever. I’m not saying he’s stupid, but the way he talks sure doesn’t make him sound smart.

    Well, considering the most articulate candidate the New York Libertarian Party ran was Howard Stern, I expect it’s a party-wide problem.

  14. What does it mean that Trump’s tone is awful and why does that matter? When people say things like that, they are really saying that Trump is violating the beltway code of manners. What makes someone like Johnson saying it and being so concerned about manners is that the left uses manners and the need to abide by a set of rules in order to be considered one of the educated classes, as a way to make most conservative and nearly all libertarian positions completely outside the boundaries of acceptable discourse. You can’t say truths the left doesn’t like or make arguments they can’t refute because they have declared doing so rude and in violation of the courtly manners of the educated class. People like Johnson are offered a devil’s bargain whereby in return for having good manners and being an ineffective opposition they are granted the status of being considered a member of the enlightened classes.

    1. What, there are no ways to call someone an asshole without looking like one yourself? Buckley eviscerated assholes while rarely looking like one. Trump’s coarseness makes him enemies who should be on his side or neutral. Churchill mastered the art of insult. Reagan managed it without looking mean-spirited. Libertarians need to get better at it.
      Rothbard used to do it. Boaz sometimes pulls it off as does Palmer. Poole doesn’t suffer fools gladly.

      1. Buckley was hated just as much as Trump. And he was much less effective at winning voters.

        1. Buckley was hated by the Left for his brilliance taking in apart their arguments and his ability to make a point without making an enemy. And I don’t believe they sent him anywhere near the same hate that Trump gets, but its hard to compare the two since Buckley was prominent in a different era.

          As for the voting thing, that’s because Buckley didn’t really run a serious campaign, hell his most famous quip from his mayoral run was, if he won was he would “demand a recount”

          I agree with Creech that Trump might be a little more effective if he was less brash. But we’ll see if Trump was right or wrong in his approach to governing and his ability to keep “winning” both this November and in 2020.

    2. “What does it mean that Trump’s tone is awful and why does that matter? When people say things like that, they are really saying that Trump is violating the beltway code of manners. ”

      Any statement off The Narrative is bad tone.

  15. The truth is: there is no such place as Aleppo.

    1. We have always been at war with Aleppo.

      1. Johnson was simply ahead of his time.

  16. To brighten your day watch Jonathan Richman sing ‘I Was Dancing In The Lesbian Bar.’

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XjFU98mEem4

    1. I keep forgetting to update my address on his mailing list (snail mail only).

  17. the left uses manners and the need to abide by a set of rules in order to be considered one of the educated classes

    Manners for the rest of us. For them, manners don’t apply obviously, or you wouldn’t see them dressing up in vagina costumes or shutting down or assaulting right of center speakers on college campuses.

    1. Yes. The rules only apply to the other side. The left routinely resorts to the worst sexist and racist slurs when it suits their purposes.

      1. Quit whimpering.

        1. Maybe we should just kick the shit out of you progtards so you learn your place. Just like every other smelly hippie.

  18. Thanks Trump voters.

    You had your vote.

    But at least it is not Hillary. Nickels on the dollar.

    Nickels on the dollar matter. It is always about the money.

  19. To be fair, I still don’t know what a Leppo is. I looked it up but apparently it was one of the Marx Brothers.

    1. “That’s-a Zeppo!”

      1. Gary Johnson does look like he could be a long-lost Marx Brother.

  20. Aleppo should not be considered a gaffe. While Johnson was ridiculed for his statement, his honesty was refreshing and if the question had been asked more honestly and not as a nonsequitor gotcha hunt, then he would have given a great response.

    The media colluded to ignore the most qualified Republicans running – yes Johnson and Weld (while running as :ibertarians) because they were former Governors had more experience as executives than any of the other candidates (including most of the GOP primary field) – to help Hillary win against what they considered a very flawed candidate in Trump. Well good for Trump for defeating the two most corrupt political families, Bushes and Clintons, the two most corrupt criminal war parties and their media lackies.

    1. The media is always gonna ask the gotcha question – esp to a third party who unlike the duopoly nominees doesn’t get a foreign policy briefing from the CIA (Trump got his first one on 8/17/16 after delaying it for a couple months – 10 days after ‘Aleppo’)

      He should have known that the gotcha was coming – and prepared a very generic response to ANY gotcha question where he doesn’t know the answer. eg

      ? – What would you do about …. Aleppo
      A – What would be your recommendation about what we do about …. Aleppo?

      ? – Who is your favorite leader of a foreign country?
      A – The President of the US cannot base our nations foreign policy on who might be a favorite or who we like. [transition to what you actually want our foreign policy to be based on]

      ? – Where/who is Gitchigoomee?
      A – Why is that critical to US interests?

    2. I don’t know if he would have given a “great” response, but the confusing, unmotivated pivot in the discussion was clear to anyone who actually watched the video.

  21. “yes Johnson and Weld (while running as :ibertarians) because they were former Governors had more experience as executives than any of the other candidates (including most of the GOP primary field)”

    Here’s the problem: you’re equating executive experience to political executive experience. Trump’s been a CEO for 40+ years. I think that’s the most executive experience of any candidate.

    1. Trump is qualified when it comes to using government connections to aid his private real estate deals. That doesn’t mean he was the best person in the running to be president. He’s gone bankrupt four times. Once is normal, twice is forgivable, three times is suspicious, but four times is crazy.

      This is a guy who does NOT know how to run a private business without insider help from the government.

      1. Anyone who is in real estate development goes bankrupt a lot. And knowing how to manipulate the government to give you what you want is perfect preparation for being President. And he is accomplishing things. You may not agree with him but there is no denying he is doing a lot. Sorry but the Trump is a buffoon line is just bullshit.

        1. Most real estate developers do not “go bankrupt a lot.” But I imagine people unfamiliar with successful entrepreneurs could believe that to be true.

          More important, Trump inherited his life (although he is a somewhat able salesman and an able reality show performer). He may be what an unpolished, unaccomplished person believes it must be like to be wealthy.

          1. This is actually a pretty good description. Like a trailer park billionarie.

          2. Rev. Arthur L. Kirkland|3.7.18 @ 7:15PM|#
            “Most real estate developers do not “go bankrupt a lot.” But I imagine people unfamiliar with successful entrepreneurs could believe that to be true.
            More important, Trump inherited his life (although he is a somewhat able salesman and an able reality show performer). He may be what an unpolished, unaccomplished person believes it must be like to be wealthy.”

            This is someone claiming to be a “Rev.”, so you’ll forgive me if I find his posts to be bullshit, like his handle.
            Fuck off, “rev.”

            1. He is bullshit. He doesn’t know anything about business either. Just like every other dimwit progtard. It’s like my commie retired university prof. Aunt talking to me about business like she has the first clue.

      2. Trump DID NOT go broke overall 4 times. That basically happened once, and he bounced back and has been slow and steadily up ever since for the most part.

        Other than that, he bankrupted specific business entities he owned, as allowed by law, so he didn’t have to bail them out with other assets. You can argue it’s immoral for a billionaire to not saaay piss away 300 million dollars throwing good money after bad when he has the 300 million bucks to do it… But it’s perfectly legal, and rich people/corporations do it ALL THE TIME.

        Most major companies own tons of subsidiary LLCs/Incs so they can do exactly this. “Oh the assembly plant in Little Rock is losing money, and has all these liabilities… Let’s BK that bitch so we don’t have to bail it out!” Happens all day long.

        I don’t think it is super ethical, but it is standard practice. Trump hasn’t done it any worse than most other people playing at his level. I don’t think he’s an exceptional business man, his main strong suit is being a sales/hype guy, but he’s not completely horrible either. Contrary to popular belief he surpassed his fathers net worth looong before his father died, and did it mostly on his own. He got a name, education, connections, and a big (but not insane) loan from pops. Other than that he did it himself through his hype skillz.

        1. You nailed it. I get so tired of hearing morons here and other p,aces spout off about corporate bankruptcy like it’s the chapter 7 they had five years ago where they wrote off their poorly used credit cards. None of them understanding the first thing about corporate bankruptcy organization.

    2. HAHAHA

      That explanation is why we should get rid of elections and turn the Office of the President into a committee of 5 – with one new person selected at random every year and rotated into that committee – with one rotated off

      1. Maybe.
        I certainly support it for Congress.
        Random selection of social security numbers, rotated, with all legislation requiring renewal 5 years after original passage or each renewal. No regulation imposed by agencies; instead they must be voted on in Congress like any other law. Bills limited to some set number of pages and font size, spacing, margins, etc.

  22. I have to admire Gary Johnson. Very few people calling themselves libertarians have the mental agility to argue that government should force people to bake cakes or arrange flower decorations, especially when such actions violate their freedom of conscience.

    Close-minded, stodgy old libertarians would probably think that forcing people to bake cakes is an absolutely absurd use of governments monopoly on violence. But they are not super mentally agile like Gary Johnson and his supporters.

    1. I disagree with Masterpiece, particularly the six-figure restitution, but I wouldn’t fault Johnson for supporting it. It’s one of the many opinions that I keep to myself in the current political climate. My view of the case’s conclusion cements me as a gay-hater because nuance isn’t a thing. I have to fit into predefined tribes so people will be able to extrapolate my entire personality from one sentence.

    2. GayJay knew women are too weak and stupid to know they shouldn’t wear hijabs.

    3. ‘Dude, can Easy Bake ovens makes brownies?’ – Gay Jay

  23. ” promoting libertarian positions on immigration”

    Go read the page. It’s all about protecting DACA illegal aliens from US immigration law, which they’ve broken for years.

    It’s not even about legal immigrants who follow US law. It’s all for those who broke US law.

    #IllegalAliensFirst

  24. Talk about the wrong guy in the wrong place at the wrong time.

    Politics is toxic? Is this a newsflash? Gary, bless his weed-addled mind, at least stood up and was counted, but we all know politics is toxic. That’s why you have to bring a big old can of neutralizer and have the balls to spray it hard and wide. And that was Gary’s failing: no bark, and no bite.

  25. I have been a registered Libertarian for quite a long time (but not since its inception). I voted for Johnson not because I think he is more intelligent, but for the basic principles of Libertarianism. I did not fault him about Alleppo as I am sure most of the country also had no idea of what that referred to. I find from the transcript w/ Gillespie that his grammatical errors speak only of average intelligence. That is not to say that one must be Mensa qualified for office, just that one should have a firm grasp on the moods, standards, opinions, welfare of the general public, to serve them without dictatorial principles. The duopoly of the dems and reps who front a world government policy in an affront to the Constitution of our Republic and (even) the party planks is reason to vote for the citizen, politician who has the pulse of the blue collar state (instead of the duopoly ties to multi-billionaire globalists).

    1. Well said! I too vote for the platform, and Gary was a damn sight better than his coathanger abortion opponent or the noob who had just joined the party and hadn’t read the platform. Another good candidate pulled a Horace Greeley by dropping dead. Truth is there are LOTS of good LP candidates. We have a Gary Johnson in Texas whom I would proudly back–plus other activists no less qualified. There is something wrong with a nominating procedure that offers us a corpse, a noob, an impostor and a recycled Republican still learning the basics about women having rights.

    2. I voted for Johnson since he was the best of the three.
      But I live in CA; my vote doesn’t count.

      1. Not true. It showed up in the final percentage total, which will drive future change. I saw the Trump wave coming, felt disgusted and voted for Hillary. It made no difference for the election, but hurt the Libertarian percentage and left me feeling soiled. To do it all over again I would have voted my conscience for Johnson.

  26. ” whom he said was appealing to racist sentiments”

    Donald Trump “is appealing to a segment I’ll just label racist,” says Gary Johnson

    That about sums it up. As per usual, Progressitarian nitwits don’t make arguments, they just label. And the labeling is always to foster the Leftist Big Lie.

    People who promote racially unbiased civic nationalism, like Trump, are “racist”. People who promote relentless antiwhite racism, and racial sectarianism generally, are “against hate”.

    Gary Johnson promotes The Narrative. As does Reason.

    Sad watching the Progressive rot spreading through formerly libertarian institutions.

    1. Start a new one!

      If nothing else I’d like libertarian-esque publications to emphasize independent thought. “The Narrative” evolves. Being “socially liberal” is actually pretty difficult because the word “liberal” has been diluted into nothingness.

      That said, I think Hillary demonstrated that it’s unwise to broadly denounce the supporters of your opponent.

    2. One of the great achievements of our society during my lifetime is that our bigots no longer wish to be known as bigots, at least not in public. The intolerance once was open, and casual, and common. Sometimes it was violent. Today’s bigots are defensive, however, and increasingly operate at our society’s margins, hiding behind terms such as colorblind, post-racial, and traditional values.

      America continues to improve, especially with respect to tolerance and inclusivity.

      Carry on, clingers.

      1. One of the great achievements of the enemies of western civilization during my lifetime is that these racist authoritarians have convinced people that they’re opposed to racist authoritarians, at least in public.

      2. Today’s bigots are defensive, however, and increasingly operate at our society’s margins, hiding behind terms such as colorblind, woke, post-racial, safe spaces, and traditional values.

        FTFY

      3. “our bigots no longer wish to be known as bigots,”

        No, you don’t, do you? Now your racism is paternalistic instead of antagonistic, but you’re as evil as ever.

        Seriously Arty, you and your progtard pals are just racist, Stalinist murderers with friendlier slogans and better packaging, but don’t ever think you’re anything other than the same mass murdering pieces of shit they were.

  27. Gary’s vote take tripled when he quit pimping for the Coathanger Abortion lobby. There’s a lesson in there somewhere. But since DemoGOP looters lie, why assume their vote-counters don’t? I would bet money Gary got twice that many votes, but how would the evidence be found to settle the bet? It’s not the votes that count; it’s the people that count the votes.

  28. “I think it would be horrible if Hillary would have been president,”

    Didn’t he echo Weld about she being a ‘great public servant’?

  29. Gary Johnson–a “libertarian” on tax policy? That would be like Dracula being on a panel dealing with vampires.

    A 23% national sales tax could not be imposed on foreign retailers (like those in China, Canada, or Mexico) who now have the capability to market and ship directly to American consumers. His proposal would effectively wipe out large sections of what’s left of smaller retailers on Main street. I met him in person a couple times to ask how he would prevent that from happening, but offered no solution, except to jail American retailers who don’t comply with his diktat.

    Government is supposed to defend property rights, and rightful government has a right to charge a user fee for those who want that service. That which is protected, is the property people currently have, not how much they spend. So, a wealth protection user fee could easily substitute for the income tax.

    Gary Johnson, while governor, could have pardoned pot prisoners en masse, but declined to do so. Then he ran a pot company and drove it into the ground.

    2016 was a golden opportunity for the LP, considering the unpopularity of the two major candidates. Instead, the LP share of votes didn’t even keep pace with the increase in population.

    1. “A 23% national sales tax could not be imposed on foreign retailers (like those in China, Canada, or Mexico) who now have the capability to market and ship directly to American consumers. ”

      Why not? See how other nations deal with this issue. Customs simply looks at the declared value of the goods and if it passes a threshold they apply the tax which must be paid before the goods are released for delivery. The system works just fine.

      Not that I’m in favor of a sales tax just that what you say is not correct.

    2. “A 23% national sales tax could not be imposed on foreign retailers (like those in China, Canada, or Mexico) who now have the capability to market and ship directly to American consumers. His proposal would effectively wipe out large sections of what’s left of smaller retailers on Main street.”

      Note that the moratorium on charging sales tax on cross state internet sales has exactly the same effect on wiping out Main Street, this time to the enrichment of Amazon (the seller) and Google (the advertiser).

  30. Even Wayne Allyn Root could have broke 4% in the 2016 election.

  31. And politicians love to indulge in the sort of “self-criticism” which says, “I was just too good for this world, too nice, too principled, blah blah.”

    Leave that sort of masturbatory fantasy for Hillary and her ilk.

    1. Yes, I included the terms “masturbatory fantasy” and “Hillary” in the same sentence.

      1. I threw up a little in my mouth when I read that.

  32. “I always thought that honesty would rule the day. I always thought integrity would rule the day. I always thought that telling the truth would rule the day. And it doesn’t,” says Gary Johnson”

    I have no idea if Washington or Lincoln told the truth, but given the incentives, Washington probably did most of the time, Lincoln less so for the same reasons.
    Any reading of FDR’s presidency makes it clear that the man lied most always and everywhere. He lied because, by his own admission, he was devious (‘don’t let the right hand know what the left is doing’). In the opinion of a large part of the American public, he was a great president, which makes the Constitution all that much more important: Direct democracy is mob rule.
    Obama probably set records for lies, exceeding Bubba’s efforts by some amount. It’s possible Trump will top it, but claiming his guess to have been on the cover of Time 4 times more than he has been as a LIE!!!! says more about the claimant than it does of Trump.
    Regardless, claiming your devotion to the truth was your downfall says you have missed a LOT of history lessons.

  33. Well I’m certainly glad he’s stopped googling himself.

  34. Yeah, I learned recently that the art of compromise often involves lying. My mom stopping arguing with me over my plans to check a stripper in Chem for a birthmark, because I agreed to cancel arrangements for him and I to drive Jerusalem so that she could stop having nightmares about me asking for directions in Aleppo.

    By the way, I will give extra points to any commenters who can present facts about the Jewish communities of Chem and Aleppo. From what I hear, the Jews from Aleppo are wiser than the wise men of Chem.

  35. I voted for Johnson. He was good on some stuff, awful on other stuff, but since I live in a state where Hillary was always going to win, there’s no reason not to protest vote.

    I’m pretty sure the LP is straight back to being a side show next go around. It probably always will be. Principled libertarianism is NEVER going to go anywhere, as people just don’t care. Hell I’ve become a less principles libertarian as I’ve got older and learned more about human nature/history, so people who never were into the principles at all will definitely never buy into it.

    A squishy pragmatic version could sweep the nation, but the LP doesn’t seem to be interested in that, so that means the Rs or Ds will need to be taken over, or yet another third party with the goal of being a squishy libertarian party will have to be built from scratch. I’m pretty much back to just trying to infiltrate the GOP and influence it in the right direction personally. It seems the most likely avenue for success. Old SoCons will be dying out over the coming years, so will many Neocons, if those that replace them are more libertarianish, it might not be so bad. A party of Rand Pauls might actually be possible, but a party of true AnCaps will never get anywhere.

      1. Well, the Romans did give us roads. And Aqueducts.

  36. The truth is Gary Johnson is a moron. Ron Paul attracted lots of people to libertarianism at a time when he was actually running as a Republican and Gary Johnson managed to turn most of them away in disgust. The fact some people think Gary Johnson was great epitomizes why libertarianism with a capital ‘L’ will never accomplish anything.

  37. Truth might have been the answer if Gary had been better at stating it. Most of his answers to questions made my head hurt.

    I still voted for him, but I would have liked someone who could state libertarian principles more cogently and convincingly.

  38. Gary, you didn’t lose because you “told the truth”. I hope your self-image doesn’t rest on that self-delusion.
    You weren’t a serious candidate because you were frankly an idiot that I’d be embarrassed vote for.
    Seriously, you made Trump look reasonably well-informed.

    “What’s Aleppo?”

    (had to put spaces in following link because reason.com doesnt’ like links)
    https://www.alternet.org /election-2016 /gary-johnson-gaffe-track-all-times- libertarian-candidate-really-didnt-know-what-hes

    1. “had to put spaces in following link because reason.com doesnt’ like links”

      It’s nothing to do with links. The link is too long. It’s seen as long word. I think 50 characters is the limit for a word.

      If you want to post a link use a shortener like https://bitly.com/

    2. And yet, John Kerry can create the country of Kyrzakhstan and be Secretary of State. Keep that in mind.

  39. This is probably the exact wrong place to ask this question, but why are the comments on Reason almost unanimously non-Libertarian?

    1. They’re not. They are variously against anarchism, open borders, or any of the other pseudo-libertarian positions people advocate.

      1. YES! That is exactly what I am talking about! ‘Anarchism’ being a euphemism here for liberty and ‘Open borders’ being a euphemism for free trade.

        Why is it that the commentators here have zero understanding of libertarian principles? Or just outright reject them? Or consider themselves libertarian in the first place?

        1. A strictly constitutional government still has sovereign borders. Are you against the US constitution, and it’s underlying principles? Given that it is probably one of the most libertarian documents of it’s kind in human history.

          1. It is totally profitless to engage in that conversation. The question is why Reason has become so popular with non-libertarians, who reject libertarian principles?

            For example, how did you wander over here?

            1. So that’s a yes. You’re against the constitution. That’s more of an anarachist view than libertarian. As for me, I’m sure I would fail most libertarian purity tests from people like you. I just want to be free of most government bullshit and be left alone. On the other hand, to make that happen (since we don’t live in a vacuum) we need sovereign borders and some modicum of government to protect those borders so we can live by those principles without foreign interests, government or private, subverting them. Hence the value of the constitutional republic, and the underlying document that enshrines it’s underlying principles.

              But maybe none of that is of value to you.

            2. It is totally profitless to engage in that conversation. The question is why Reason has become so popular with non-libertarians, who reject libertarian principles?

              You tell us: you are the non-libertarian.

        2. Anarchism’ being a euphemism here for liberty

          Well, you can delude yourself into believing that “anarchism” means the same as “liberty”, but that doesn’t actually make it the same.

          and ‘Open borders’ being a euphemism for free trade.

          “Open borders” refers to the unidirectional, uninhibited movement of people into the US welfare state; that’s not a libertarian position, and it has nothing to do with free trade.

          but why are the comments on Reason almost unanimously non-Libertarian?

          I think we resolved that question: you’re confusing libertarianism with lawlessness, anarchy, and massive redistribution.

  40. I voted for him. He was just too decent a guy and had actual principles. That never wins elections but I do not believe in voting just to choose the least odious republican or democrat.

    Libertarians should continue to inform and influence politics.

    We have the porcupine which is a decent animal unless you get too close.

    I like that, we are porcupines.

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=_r2rDBVFAv4

    1. He also picked a horrible running mate and ran a vey bad campaign. Painfully bad.

  41. Are you serious Gary? From the outset you had to have known that you had to run a perfect campaign, while Hillary and Trump would be free to err (and nearly collapse). That’s the main reason you lost, anything you did wrong would be magnified to the 20th degree, any successes you had would be edited, or marginalized.
    That’s how this game is run.

  42. Gary Johnson wasn’t a libertarian, he was Republican lite which is the reason why I voted for Trump. Trump told the libtards to pound sand and passed tax cuts, look at our economy now. While I don’t like everything he does or stands for, economics wise he is doing better than the evil, globalist, witch ever would’ve done.

    1. If I was a pro-inflationary authoritarian I would completely agree!

      1. If I was a pro-inflationary authoritarian

        You are.

  43. Oh look. All the Trumpatarians hate G J.

  44. “I’m done with elected political office,” he avers, even as he discusses his ongoing work with Our America Initiative, a nonprofit dedicated to training libertarian candidates and promoting libertarian positions on immigration, sentencing reform, occupational licensing, and more

    Great! Gary Johnson can join Michael Hihn as an example of how not to advocate or promote libertarianism.

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  46. Gary and Nick seem not to have noticed, but when Gary was blabbing about overriding Roe v. Wade (the decision copied from the LP platform of 1972), he barely got one percent of the vote. When in 2016 he decided women had individual rights after all, his vote tally increased by 328%. This tells us that candidates who promise to bring back coathanger abortions are a liability. Candidates who, as in Canada, leave all such choices to women and physicians, are an asset to the Libertarian Party.

  47. I always thought that honesty would rule the day. I always thought integrity would rule the day. I always thought that telling the truth would rule the day

    Not by themselves; they need to be coupled with wisdom and good judgment, which, I’m sorry to have to say, seemed lacking in your candidacy.

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