Thursday, January 31, 2013

Robert Ringer takes a stroll down Libertarian Party memory lane

Stresses, when it comes to working with others for liberty, let's not make the perfect the enemy of the good

Today’s over-the-top criminal behavior in Washington has brought back some old memories for me. With the publication of my book “Restoring the American Dream,” I created quite a stir in libertarian circles. So much so that I was asked to give the keynote address at the 1979 Libertarian Party Presidential Nominating Convention.

Ed Clark was the Libertarian Party presidential nominee that year, and David Koch (of Koch Brothers fame) was his running mate. The master of ceremonies was actor Orson Bean, who years later would become the father-in-law of Andrew Breitbart (who was 10 years old at the time!).

All the attention was pretty heady stuff for a young, newly minted anarchist like me. There was no doubt in my naïve mind that it was just a matter of time until the Libertarian Party would overwhelm the Demopublican Party and put an end to government tyranny.

It was also at the 1979 convention that a young medical doctor by the name of Ron Paul introduced himself to me. Little did I know that he was to become a beacon of hope for millions of Americans over the next three decades.
In a perfect world, I’d be an anarchist not only in theory, but in reality. But because it’s not a perfect world, I realize that anarchism would open the door to my being victimized by the same political criminals who now rule us. With anarchism, there would be no laws to even slow them down. That’s why I reluctantly believe we need laws to protect our lives and property. The problem is that most of today’s laws violate our lives and property.

It’s important to be vigilant about reminding ourselves not to inadvertently stray toward tyranny. But, while doing so, let’s not label those who are 90 percent in agreement with us as “not pure enough.” If someone favors getting rid of unemployment benefits, food stamps and the income tax, I’m happy to have them on my side.
Editor's note - Ringer takes the view that the Libertarian Party hasn't grown since 1980, based on Gary Johnson's 1.27 million (1.0%) votes compared to Clark at 922,000 (1.1%). I take the opposite view; 1.27 million votes sounds far more impressive than 922,000.

1 comment:

John Morris said...

I also think the Johnson campaign marks a big turning point in terms of the deep lack of trust in the GOP.

This was a really huge election- the fact that over a million people, most of whom strongly oppose Obama would risk putting him back, shows just how strong the base of people is who will never back a conventional GOP, social conservative or RINO.

Clearly the 1.3 million is the tip of a very large iceberg.