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Sunday, January 13, 2008

Platform Action and Debates

Third Party Watch has published the parallel-interview debate to which Steve Gordon had last week invited me and Radical Caucus leader Susan Hogarth. Hogarth's tack was to paint Libertarian principles as an indivisible monolith whose "message is being co-opted by the major power parties" just as weak-kneed moderates are seeking to downplay some of those principles as "challenging" or "intimidating". I in turn pointed out that there are multiple principled schools of libertarianism, and that the minority anarcholibertarian school that Hogarth thinks is the only principled one is in fact not being co-opted or "hungered" for at all. Hogarth was complimented by several fellow radicals for what they said was her uncharacteristic civility, as she studiously avoided defending (or even identifying) the positions that moderates find "challenging", and similarly avoided all specific criticism of the draft moderate Platform. However, on Wednesday Hogarth wrote on her LPradicals forum:
“[The reformers’] offering will be a true abomination. The platform committee is so stacked with people who embrace taxation and other uses of coercion that it can’t possibly produce anything that would be acceptable in toto to a roomful of libertarians. They will find out with this offering just exactly how far they have over-reached.”
Simultaneously, Restore04 leader David Nolan ventured tentatively into a minor email skirmish with me before reverting to his position that he would rather debate via microphone than keyboard. (Nolan did, however, say some nice things about the Pure Principles draft, and in saying I'm not an "enemy" seemed to be retracting his invitation that I leave the LP if I don't like some parts of the 2004 Platform.) The skirmish arose in the wake of earnest efforts by Steve Kubby campaign aide Paulie Cannoli to arrange Platform debates on Steve's webradio show and/or on one of Paulie's blogs -- or the new LPradicals debate ghetto/honeypot Hogarth created after booting me from her other two forums. My counter-proposal is here.

Even though LP radicals are just starting to notice it, the work of the 2008 PlatCom (announced by me and others to multiple forums since last summer) proceeds apace as our Feb 15 Las Vegas meeting approaches. The subcommittee working on the Pure Principles draft has now grown to 10 of PlatCom's 20 voting spots, and most notable among its recent votes has been an endorsement of the Bylaws Committee's recommended tweak to the Statement of Principles.

The PlatCom now has an official web site for posting our drafts and a blog for discussing them, supplementing the suggestion box that was announced last September. The Restore04 petition is up to about 160 signatures, but the Platform community breathlessly awaits news about the responses pouring in from the past and prospective NatCon delegates who received the PlatCom Chair's recent survey.


Anonymous said...

Brian, regarding your counter-offer:

FAQs are good, but they don’t get everyone on the same page. If I was to do a FAQ for Restore 04 I would not know some of the questions people may want to ask.

The yahoo group serves that purpose to some extent. However, not everyone is into yahoo groups, and some may find the blog comment format more convenient, whereas other may find the radio debate easier to follow.

You don’t have to be the current committee draft’s representative if you don’t want to be. Anyone who wants to take on that role is welcome.

So far we have Tom Knapp speaking for WSPP and one possible speaker for Restore 04 (Alex Peak).

If he confirms, that will only leave your draft without a designated representative in order for the discussion to take place.

The same holds true for the radio show, with David Nolan and Tom Knapp having already expressed tentative interest. That would leave only your draft without representation in the radio debate.

Anyone who wants to represent the current platform committee draft in a debate against WSPP and Restore 04, let me know.

Until/unless Alex confirms as the Restore 04 rep in the print debate we are looking for a Restore 04 rep in the print portion as well.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

Let's try it like this