July 03, 2014

#Libertarians trade fear of possible #tyranny for increase of actual tyrrany

I recently interviewed a Libertarian Party candidate for statewide office. While I certainly agree with small-l libertarians, and to fair degree the party on many social issues (gay marriage, at least decriminalization of marijuana and ending the "War on Drugs" in general, and because of the first issue and reproductive choice, know that neither Rand nor Ron Paul are libertarians), we definitely part ways on regulatory issues, what are essential needs from our government, economic ideas and more.

Said statewide candidate raised the fears of government tyranny, a police state, and the need for possible nullification of allegedly unconstitutional laws. While I disagree with both Obama and Bush on warrantless wiretapping, even while matters related to that slowly work their way through the court system, and personally believe some of those actions have been unconstitutional, that's not what libertarians, or even more, Libertarians, are talking about.

For them, basically any environmental, economic, health or safety regulation is "unconstitutional."

And, in this belief, they've exchanged the fear of one tyranny for the growing actuality of another.

I've often said of the two biggest dystopian political novels of the 20th century, "Brave New World" is far more prescient than "1984." Even thought control, the bane of the latter book, is more likely to come from the corporate world than the government today. We just need to change "Ford" to "Google" or similar in Huxley's novel. (That also shows that individual businesses can sometimes "date" themselves.)

Ever since the first, 1976 Buckley v. Vallejo Supreme Court ruling on political campaign contribution money being "free speech," through Citizens United and now McCutcheon vs. Federal Election Commission, we have a majority of the Supreme Court willingly and blindly turning an eye to how plutocratic companies, the plutocratic CEOs who run them, the plutocratic lobbyists they send into battle, the plutocratic think tanks they fund, and the plutocratic-fearing Members of Congress they buy off corrupt our political system, and from that, our social and economic system. (And, once again, folks, this is why Glenn Greenwald is NOT a liberal. He supported Citizens United, and by his silence, supports McCutcheon.)

And libertarians, let alone the greater wingnuts of the Party, think even less regulation of this, and more money sloshing through the system, will help John and Jane Doe on Main Street? Tosh. Wall Street cares nothing for Main Street unless it gets on the same lobbying bus. Libertarians claiming they have answers for small-town America?

I suppose this statewide Texas Libertarian candidate would like to see even less than the already-inadequate regulations that let an ammonium nitrate fertilizer plant turn West, Texas, into a giant, horrific, bloody Roman candle.

So, small-town Texans? If you run into a Libertarian candidate, just ask them how they feel about regulating fertilizer sites.

Meanwhile, let's look at the fears of alleged tyranny from the federal government that have Glass all worked into a lather, per her campaign positions, and deconstruct them.
★     Nullification: Nullify unconstitutional federal acts like EPA, Obamacare, NSA spying, and BLM land grabs.  Don't sue the buzzards -- arrest them!  Resist UN power grabs like the Small Arms Disarmament Treaty.  Protect our gun rights from local, state, national, or international threats. 
Really? In actuality, SCOTUS ruled EPA's carbon regulation constitutional last week, and Obamacare the same, 3 years ago. As for nuttery like "BLM land grabs," Ms. Glass, either you know there is almost zero BLM land in Texas, and so you're a lie-spouting hysteriac on this issue worse than Greg Abbott, or you don't, and you're too stupid to run for governor. 

Beyond that? Just because you the Red Queen of Wonderland wave your hands over your head and shout "unconstitutional" doesn't mean that it is actually unconstitutional.
★     Fiscal sanity: To be financially independent of Washington, replace -- or even better do without -- the almost 40% of our budget that comes from the federal government.  Promote and restore sound money to fall back on in the event of a currency collapse.  Send the Texas Rangers to bring our Texas gold back from New York.  Slash our budget 50% -- taxes and spending -- which would just put Texas back where we were when Rick Perry first took office.  End property taxes and franchise taxes, and resist efforts to impose an income tax.  Opt out of Medicaid.  No taxpayer-funded services for non-citizens.  
Reality? Texas, like most red states, gets more money from the federal government when it pays in.

The rest of this is just blather. "Texas gold from New York?" Given that there is no "Texas gold" and "federal gold" isn't stored in New York, this is a highly weak Libertarian attempt to piggyback on the Occupy movement, if it's even that logical.

★     A welcoming immigration policy and a secure border:  As in times past, create a made-for-Texas guest worker program which prohibits receipt of taxpayer-funded services.  Use our Texas State Guard, which is under the total control of the governor, to work with Texas law enforcement and protect private property rights along the border 
Reality? Here and above, Glass talks about Texas state law enforcement engaging in unauthorized federal law enforcement activities. The rest of this is pandering. Illegal immigrants are already, and always have been, not allowed to qualify for food stamps and most "welfare."

★     Property rights:  Defeat BLM land grabs.  End eminent domain.  Stop toll road boondoggles, public/private partnerships, and other forms of cronyism.  Defend water rights from theft by federal, international, state, or local authorities, commissions, boards, or private entities using the machinery of government.  Beat back any effort -- no matter how small -- to disarm Texans. 
Again, there are no "BLM land grabs." There is no plan to "disarm Texans." And, that's just the least wingnut part of this area.

★     Texas sovereignty: Revitalize our Texas State Guard to secure our border, provide disaster relief, and anything else a state miltia should be prepared to do in these times.  Protect our Texas electrical grid from interference and harm, and protect our civil liberties by forbidding its use by the NSA's San Antonio super-spy center. 
See the "secure borders" section above. Glass claims she's not about secession, but this manifesto, especially the last paragraph and the dogwhistle word "sovereignty," is exactly about a de facto version of secession and she knows that.

So, non mouth-breathers, any time you think the GOP can be nuts, the Libertarians, at least in Texas, will trump that.

And, Glass is arguably a "mainstream" Libertarian. Think of what she'd be like if she were a wingnut by Texas Libertarian standards.

Once again, the Libertarians have shown that they're basically about two things:
1. A paranoia that is generally not just out of proportion to reality but, per Victor Weisskopf, is "not even wrong" in proportion to reality.
2. Randian-like spoiled brats who don't want to obey rules.

I'm sorry, they're about three things. Whether driven more by No. 1 or No. 2, they're ready to be even more blatant liars than, in general, currently elected officials from the two "major" parties.

I am reminded of U.S. ambassadors to Afghanistan semi-jokingly saying that Afghan President Hamid Karzai "needs to take his meds." Well, that's what ranting like this makes me think of — someone who needs psychiatric help. Speaking of, and with actual past need for psychiatric help, I am reminded of Texas lieutenant governor candidate Dan Patrick, known around these precincts as The Stinking Anglo Formerly Known as Danny Goeb™.

It's clinical paranoia exacerbated by cultish groupthink. And, it's gotten worse over the decades. In 1992, I did a freelance interview of Andre Marrou, the Libertarians' presidential candidate this year. He hit all the basic Libertarian principles, but without the hysteria. True, we didn't have NSA snooping on American citizens, but we did have the revelations about COINTELPRO and other CIA shenanigans that were less than 20 years old.

So, rather than focus on "they're taking our gunz" (and where's Agenda 21 in all of this?) you'd be less hysterical if you talked about the overkill of the "War on Terror."

Speaking of, and other "wars"? Also, Glass, and I guess other Texas Libertarians, are suddenly silent about the "War on Drugs," long a bete noire of not only Libertarians, but rightly, of left-liberal civil libertarians like me.

As we celebrate the 151st anniversary of "a new birth of freedom," and approach the 238th anniversary of the original one, we don't need a new tyranny, whether from Google, Amazon, Apple, or other corporate masters, strangling what's left, tenuously, of that freedom. Nor do we need politicians who think that's the American dream.

Yes, "regulatory capture" means that bureaucrats often don't do all they could. However, even then, it's the "captured" elected officials that are usually the root problem. See "lobbyists," above. The Libertarian solution is the wrong one for rural Texas and Texas generally, at the state level, and wrong on the national level, too.

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