The San Francisco LP is something of a hotbed of gold buggery and related conspiracy theories, due in no small part to the earnest efforts of LPSF Chair Phil Berg. George Phillies was in town this weekend, and when he sensibly declined to endorse replacing the Fed with a gold standard, Berg posted this long essay laying out the conspiracy built around fractional reserve banking in America.
What's new and interesting here is not the gold-buggery, which acts almost as a divining rod for separating serious libertarian intellectuals from the rest. Rather, it's the reaction to gold-buggery by some of the smartest LP radicals like Rob Power (Outright Libertarian Chair and PlatCom alternate working on a Restor04/2006 hybrid draft) and (to a certain extent) Starchild. I'm always amazed at how libertarian true-believers never seem to question their beliefs when other intelligent committed libertarians don't drink the Kool-Aid offered by the true-believers. One of my strongest reservations about my recent conversion to hardcore geolibertarianism is why it doesn't have higher mindshare among libertarian intellectuals. You never see a middle-brow gold bug like Ron Paul try to offer an explanation why so many libertarian intellectuals disagree with gold buggery.