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Sunday, November 14, 2004

Brand Libertarian Party -- From 1980 Craniacs to 2004 Borders' Re-Branding

Reality Check for the Libertarian Party!

1980 LP Presidential Candidate Ed Clark: 921,299 votes

2004 LP Presidential Candidate Michael Badnarik: 370,000 votes

24-Year Return on Investment: "Priceless"


Last week at www.LewRockwell.com, 1996 & 2000 LP Presidential Candidate Harry Browne argued that national vote totals were an irrelevant metric for "success."

On Thursday, November 11 at www.TechCentralStation.com, Max Borders offered a vision for re-branding and re-positioning the Libertarian Party. Unfortunately, Orthodox Libertarians at Lew Rockwell's Blog once again criticized Max Borders for his thoughtful and innovative recommendations.

I say "once again" because first in September and next in October at TCS, Max Borders challenged Libertarian Orthodoxy with a defense...or better yet...with an offense...for Libertarian Hawks. The L-Hawks challenged the L-Orthodoxy about strict military isolationism.
Max Borders' 2 TCS articles led to Cato hosting a conference on the L-Hawk topic, which was moderated by the "always Johnny-Cash-esque, dressed-in-black, anarchist-fashion-statement" and Reason editor Nick Gillespie.

A Lesson from the 1980s...

In 1980, Ed Crane and the so-called Craniacs tried to modify the LP position and re-brand the LP. On a sunny Sunday at Stanford University--where I was attending a Cato University seminar--Murray Rothbard--who I was standing next to--got one of his many admirers to question Ed Clark in public at an LP rally, which was covered by NBC nationally.

On the Stanford Campus, the Rothbardian devotee shouted out to presidential candidate Ed Clark during Q&A: "Why have you compromised the LP position on the legalization of hard drugs such as heroin?"

(I should know since I was the one who posed the question to Ed Clark.)

Well...as we know, the Rothbard "purists" indicted the Craniacs for selling out the LP...and its "Party of Principle" position.

Fast forward 24 years...and as we know, the Rockwell-Rothbard "purists" have indicted Max Borders for daring to re-brand and re-position the LP.

As a former card-carrying LP member and former Rothbard-Rockwell devotee, I congratulate Max Borders (and others) for their constructive insights on L-Hawks and the Libertarian Party.

Unfortunately, L-Hawks can't and won't fly...so we welcome them all to the Progressive Conservative Eagle.

And unfortunately, Max Borders' insightful suggestions about re-positioning the LP will not be heard.

Max...ask Ed Crane why he left the Libertarian Party after the 1980 election??