Venezuelan soldiers arrest a young Pemon woman for protesting. Image from Periodico el Libertario.
There's been a lot of online discussion among some of the more active members of the Libertarian Party's Libertarian Socialist Caucus about Venezuela. Unfortunately, most of these talking points are completely untrue. Several intellectually honest LSC members have, to their credit, contacted me with their questions, knowing I've worked closely with members of the Venezuelan Opposition for over two years.
The long story short of the best libertarian position on Venezuela is that there should be no US military adventures in Latin America, but Maduro is also a brutal dictator and the Venezuelan people have every right to get rid of him.Read more
Above: Former Assemblywoman Natalia Diaz, Costa Rica
May 15 has proven to be a great day for relishing the all the news about the Libertarian Party. It's not just the party of principle--it's a party of people and a party of action. The stories covering LP candidates and causes spilled over beyond today's edition of LP in the News. Then, even after a long edition of Even More LP in the News, we were still looking at a stack of stories about other countries' Libertarian Parties in the news, and what other countries' news media is saying about the LP of the USA.
The Libertarian Party of Nevada is pleased to inaugurate the first installment of LP in the News: International Edition. We'll start off with the international coverage. The Italian news station Sky 24 discussed career activist Adam Kokesh and comedian Vermin Supreme in an article about third party candidates in US presidential elections. It's cool that journalists abroad are interested in third party candidates.
The very Catholic, very conservative news site Hispanidad, based in Spain, published a brief article on Governor Bill Weld, 2016 Libertarian Vice Presidential candidate. The editorial staff rather scornfully points out in bold, enlarged text that Weld "supports abortion and gay marriage." Yahoo Noticias put out a much longer, more in-depth, and more upbeat article about Weld, his goals, and his chances of making an impact on the election.Read more
Hip Hop Meets Politics: Doug Davis (left) and Vegas Don (right)
There are so many Libertarians who made the news in the last few weeks that we just couldn't fit it all in today's LP in the News. This edition of Even More LP in the News has hip hop, cannabis, ballot access, black guns, and Chic-Fil-A.
Indian Country Today briefly mentioned the Libertarian Party in an excellent essay about America's broken electoral system and the disparate lack of representation, especially for Native peoples. As far as Libertarian solutions, our first instinct is to shrink the federal government and immediately permit the sovereign Native nations to do whatever the hell they want. However, we're available and willing to be actively engaged in a dialogue with any Native American nation that'll sit at the table with us. We're also very interested in Native Americans holding positions of responsibility in our party.
Echoing Mark Trahant's shoutouts to third parties in Indian Country Today, the Colorado-based Durango Herald published a lovely op-ed against the mainstream political machines suppressing independent candidates. That's why we at LP Nevada want to thank The Batavian (New York), the Door County Pulse (Wisconsin), the Unionville Times (Pennsylvania), and the Reflector (North Carolina) for announcing upcoming LP events. If we want to grow the LP so independent and third parties aren't easily suppressed, we recommend following the example of the LP volunteers who advertised their upcoming events to these local media venues.
Moving on to the tour of the local scenes across America, we'll start the national sweep with Sin City, Nevada.
Robert Strawder, a.k.a. Vegas Don, is a hip hop artist and a former congressional candidate on the LP ticket. Strawder was interviewed by Vudu Spellz for Deftal TV, where he talked about the recent Teen Choice Talent Awards. "It was basically for kids, giving them an outlet, instead of playing video games, gang banging, robbing, hustling, doing whatever, it was to showcase their talent and get them believe in themselves. Also, to put together a photoshoot, videoshoot, and production for a fully produced track... 1st Place got 3 tracks; second place, two; third place, one... Vegas has a lot of talent."Read more
The last month has been busier than ever for Libertarians across America. And of course, America's Libertarians are making the news! From the red rocky deserts of Nevada to the bustling streets of New York City, local and national media outlets alike are picking up the buzz on what the Libertarians are doing.
We'll start off with what everybody really wants to know about: the 2020 Libertarian presidential primaries. The Libertarian Republic and Being Libertarian both published updated guides on the various declared contenders for the Libertarian presidential nomination. Both guides list longtime libertarian Adam Kokesh and the comedian Vermin Supreme. (Above image: Daniel Behrman, Texas)
Both Kokesh and Supreme were mentioned in an Italian-language article from Sky 24, an Italian news station, about US third party presidential candidates. Vermin Supreme is the only Libertarian candidate named in a Madera Tribune op-ed on how there are too many presidential candidates, while The Gazette (based in Idaho) featured the LP's Daniel Behrman in an article on te 400+ presidential candidates across the U.S.
A conservative-leaning editorial in the Houston Chronicle talks about how Joe Biden needs Libertarian voters to challenge Trump--assuming Biden even wins the Democratic nomination. The Washington Post covered Governor Bill Weld, arguing that he can't beat Trump, but he's the only real way conservatives can dissent. Weld is a Lifetime Member of the Libertarian Party even though he's running against Trump in the 2020 Republican primaries. Frankly, this is a great strategy; it weakens and divides the GOP, it will turn some Republicans off of the GOP to vote Libertarian, and it also clears the playing field inside the LP for new blood to show their quality.
With Weld out of the Libertarian presidential primaries, Adam Kokesh is the best organized and longest-campaigning of the current crop of presidential contenders. He has a campaign team, a reserve of volunteers in nearly every state, and also has a solid 15 years of activism experience as a capital-L Libertarian. Kokesh wasn't in the news this time only because of his campaign; instead, Republican Rep. Chad Christensen, an ex-Nevada Assemblyman and current Idaho State Representative, was busted by the Post Register for plagiarizing whole paragraphs from Adam's 2008 essay "Duty to Resist." We're not surprised that this is coming from a Republican politician.
There are still only crickets coming from Congressman Justin Amash's corner, but Reason still keeps talking about the possibility of an Amash 2020 run. Now, let's get to the state and regional news!Read more
Hace dos años, casi nadie en el mundo sabía que había libertarios en Cuba. Sí, es cierto, ¡libertarios en Cuba!
Comenzaron como un pequeño grupo de activistas que se hacían llamar el Club Anarcocapitalista de Cuba y más tarde formaron el grupo de estudio "Mises Cuba". Los líderes de este pequeño grupo de nuevos libertarios habían aprendido sobre las ideas libertarias por su propia cuenta, con su acceso limitado al Internet. Se convirtieron en libertarios simplemente por un sincero deseo de aprender sobre la libertad humana.Read more
Two years ago, hardly anyone in the world knew there were libertarians in Cuba. Yes, that's right, libertarians in Cuba!
They'd started as a tiny group of activists calling themselves the Cuban Anarchocapitalist Club and later formed a Mises Cuba study group. The leaders of this small group of new libertarians had learned about libertarian ideas on their own, with their limited access to the internet. They became libertarian simply from a sincere desire to learn
These brave freedom activists first came to the Libertarian Party of Nevada's attention in February of 2017, when a Cuban refugee recently arrived in Miami contacted one of our members asking for help. Two libertarians, Ubaldo Herrera and Manuel Velasquez, were arrested by State Security officers (the secret police) and sentenced to time in prison in a kangaroo court on false charges.Read more
The Case for Reparations to the Black Community
Noun rep· a· ra· tion | \ ˌre-pə-ˈrā-shən\
1a: A repairing or keeping in repair
Cory Booker recently announced that he was going to author a bill, saying “this bill is a way of addressing head-on the persistence of racism, white supremacy, and implicit racial bias in our country. It will bring together the best minds to study the issue and propose solutions that will finally begin to right the economic scales of past harms and make sure we are a country where all dignity and humanity is affirmed.”
I agree wholeheartedly with Senator Booker that we need to look at ways to repair the damage done to communities by racial bias and the unintended consequences of policies that have exacerbated the problems. I humbly propose a few ideas for his group to study. I hope all Libertarians will join me in this effort to make reparations. After all, we can point directly to our government for the major institutional racial bias and bigotry that is rampant in our society through many of our institutions and industries that are heavily regulated by our government.
1) Immediately stop this drug war that overwhelmingly targets and abuses and financially destroys the lives of peaceful people in our lower income and minority communities through cash bail, asset forfeiture, loss of voting and gun ownership rights, criminal records that make job hunting difficult, as well as the pressures put on those in the family that must survive while a family member is in jail. There is no justice in a system that allows celebrity and white privilege to avoid this war while the poor and minority communities get ground down. Another aspect to look at is how most cannabis companies are friends of politicians and overwhelmingly white people own them. To jail some people, and then allow others to actually make huge profits for the same act is not equality. This is the easiest “repair” to make. Do it now.
2) Commercial opportunities are few and far between in our black communities. There are older buildings with dirt lots surrounding them. Whole blocks without stores and typical businesses that would line the streets of a neighborhood. A perfect example in Las Vegas is near the Walker African American Museum (Some VERY interesting items of black history in Las Vegas. 705 W Van Buren Ave, Las Vegas, NV 89106 see Gwen). There are dirt lots up and down the street. When we make it near impossible to get loans/credit in the community, when the local government makes zoning and permitting difficult, when we make hair braiding licenses in Nevada harder to get than a police badge (yes...more hours to get a hair braiding license), why are we surprised when these communities are lacking local businesses and opportunities? To add insult to injury, for those businesses that do get off the ground, they must compete with Amazon and other huge corporate entities who are subsidized by local, state and federal governments. How is a small business going to compete with a larger competitor that doesn’t have to pay property taxes, or has other government tax and subsidy benefits? Repair this by allowing communities to expand their commercial activity through deregulation and free and fair markets.
3) Repair our schools. In Nevada, we have the worst schools in the country. Full stop. We are last. I am not speaking hyperbolically. I told the Clark County School board last year, “You are the Cleveland Browns of Public Education” (Cleveland was 0-16 that year)...but I followed it with “however, the Cleveland Browns failed with less than half the budget of Clark County Schools administrators.” Every politician says our schools are important. Liars. Every single politician that screams about how important the schools are, and promises to do every bit of digging and begging and fighting to get more money for teachers are outright, no question about it, liars. Pants on fire...liar liar liar. How do I know this? In Clark County, there is no politician who has yet to address the 5000 non-teaching administrators who make 6 figure salaries with benefits and lifetime pensions. 5000 WHO MAKE OVER 6 FIGURES. There are IT Managers, CCSD “Police,” assistant principals and many others making 100k, 200k, 250k...and more. In fact, one CCSD Security Guard made 40k in OVERTIME last year and cleared $150k total. Teachers start about 40k, and a policeman made that in overtime on the Administrative level. IF you are going to make reparations, please consider our schools a priority, and don’t punish the teachers, parents, and students anymore. 5000 administrators who administer the worst schools in the country DESERVE to pay their fair share. If they don’t like it, promote some teachers to $99k/year. They will appreciate the raise and do a better job. Then use the money you save to hire more teachers for higher salaries. Win/win.
I hope these three areas are good places to start. We can discuss the racket of insurance and pharmaceutical company corruption and government protections of their market shares through tariffs, subsidies, and outright government mandates/bans. There are so many instances where politicians are saying one thing, and yet their actions defy their words. It is time to stop telling me how important equality, opportunity, and fairness is; and start to show me.
We have fresh news and lots of inter-party political fighting happening across America, from local politics to state and federal races, to the 2020 presidential race!
Let's start with some news from our own backyard here in Nevada. From Las Vegas, the Epoch Times wrote an article about Wayne Allyn Root's new book, Trump Rules. They were nice enough to mention the Libertarian Party, since Root is a former LP candidate. However, we want to make it clear that Root left the LP years ago to rejoin the GOP, and that we in the LP are NOT fans of Donald Trump or his disregard for the Constitution; not the ban on bumpstocks, nor the lack of disclosure on foreign civilian casualties in our wars, and certainly not a phony state of emergency to pay for a useless Berlin-style border wall.
KARK (NBC News Arkansas) reports that the Arkansas LP is suing the [Republican-controlled] state government over a new petition law that requires the LP to almost triple its petition signatures from 10,000 to over 26,000.
"We told our legislators that they were re-establishing a standard that had been overturned in federal court back in 2006, but they passed it anyway," says Michael Pakko, the chair of the state party. "We have clear precedent on our side." Pakko also said, "As if to add insult to injury, they made it even more difficult by moving the deadlines. Prospective challengers to the established incumbents shouldn’t have to form parties and select candidates over a year before the general election."
On that same subject, many thanks to the Arkansas Times for re-publishing LP Arkansas' press release denouncing this move by the state government's two-party duopoly. We say two-party duopoly, but it's always been almost exclusively the GOP that goes out of its way to make our lives difficult.Read more
Las Vegas' native son Henry Thorns was grilling up a storm last Friday. Posted in a super market parking lot in the north-central part of Las Vegas, the "historic West Side", Mr. Thorns had a very simple objective: feed the people.
And that's exactly what he did!Read more
From Reno to Baltimore, there's way too much juicy news (and political drama) surrounding the Libertarian Party that we couldn't possibly fit it all into today's edition of LP in the News. That's why we have Even More LP in the News for you!
The Nevada Independent reports that 16 people in northern Nevada have applied to replace Sparks-area Assemblyman Mike Sprinkle after he resigned due to allegations of sexual harassment. One of those 16 is LP Nevada's own Wendy Stolyarov! We certainly wish her the best of luck in the selection process.
Ballot Access News reports that in neighboring Arizona, the LP sent a letter to a panel of three judges who heard the LP's election complaint on March 12, to clarify some details that were obscured during the testimony hearing.
For those who forgot, in a move worthy of Nicolas Maduro, the Arizona Republican Party sued the LP on a bogus claim that their candidate petition signatures weren't valid. The state government hastily agreed with the plaintiffs, and the entire LP slate was kicked off the ballot for the 2018 midterm election (Lines v. McCormick). They did this to guarantee a Republican victory in the US Senate race... which they still lost. Jonathan Lines may no longer be the AZ GOP chairman, but he's dreaming if he thinks he's off the hook for undermining the republican democracy that American soldiers have killed and died to protect. Because of this, the entire LP is perfectly committed to helping karma bite Lines in the backside at the worst possible moment for his party and for him.
Sad news came out of Colorado several weeks ago with the untimely passing of Boulder County LP Chairman Ralph Shnelvar. Mario Enrico wrote a beautiful obituary for Ralph which appeared in Think Liberty.Read more