The Libertarian Party (LP) had, after the late, great Harry Browne‘s campaigns, been falling further and further from it’s original principles. In the early portion of this decade, when the LP removed from the party platform their calls for the abolishment of the CIA and FBI, I wrote their newspaper to say I’d not send them another dime of money until they got back to their founding principle: the non-initiation of force.
As I drifted away from the LP and politics and toward market-based action, I paid less and less attention to the LP. I even said on the air recently on “Free Talk Live“, my talk show, that the only reason I was still a member is because I bought a life membership and it hadn’t been worth my while to cancel it.
Well, along comes this post on the LRC blog. I agree with the sentiments of the post, and felt this move by the LP was the last straw. I called and revoked my membership, and felt clean and fresh afterward!
The LP is dead to me and no longer resembles the party I joined ten years ago. After the 2000 Browne campaign, I jumped into LP activism. I attended meetings regularly and single-handedly organized and paid for libertarian outreach at the county fair, gun shows, and gay/lesbian pridefests as well as created and tended their website. I did and funded it all myself because of the political nature of the LP. It was not hard to notice how bureaucratic and slow they were. For example, they spent uncountable weeks debating over bylaws. Plus, at the non-bylaw-reviewing regular meetings, whenever an idea was proposed there would nearly always be someone who would derail the discussion into debate on the idea or the issue. Very little ever got done. This was just my experience with the local LP in Florida. (Nothing against the individuals, they are good people. It’s the central planning that is the major failure.)
The LP state conventions I attended were dull. Having watched the LP national conventions on TV, I can say that while some of the speeches were excellent, the bulk of the time was spent bickering over party platform, blah blah blah. I’m glad I never went to one. All of this distasteful bureaucratic, political garbage was frustrating to me, as I didn’t know what else to do to achieve liberty in my lifetime.
Since I discovered the Free State Project in the first half of the decade and especially since moving to New Hampshire, I’ve been learning about the free market and experiencing REAL, decentralized, activism. Sure, there are a bunch of political Free Staters (for those of you who still believe you can change the system from the inside), but the most exciting and effective activism has been market-based. There’s a cadre of great market-based activists (both NH natives and Free Staters) here in Keene, NH, and that number is growing. We’re creating our own media (TV, radio, print, blog) and have begun living free. If the Blue Light Gang interferes, we already have proven success at deterring their aggression. As more join in withdrawing from coercive society and joining the voluntary society, we will only be more successful as the coercive gang’s veil of legitimacy will crumble from its own inherent contradictions. Eventually, the transition to the free market will be completed and not one vote need be cast or politician promoted.
Goodbye LP. Their contribution to the dilution and destruction of the term Libertarian is appreciated. “Free Marketeer” is so much more descriptive of my beliefs. Thanks LP, for helping me realize that politics is never the solution to problems.
We will never be free by begging, but only by choice. I choose liberty. What about you? Will you join the Nonviolent Evolution?