WELCOME to the Liberator Online!
In This Issue
* Spring: Operation Politically Homeless (OPH) Time!
* Rand Paul and Libertarians Win Big at CPAC
New Report: How To Cut $1.8 Trillion in Wasteful Spending
* VIDEO: Highlights of Rand Paul’s Historic Anti-Drone Filibuster
* CPAC Poll: End U.S. Military Support for Other Nations
THEY SAID IT:
Jay Leno says socialism made Chavez rich.... Some businesses are too big to prosecute, says U.S. attorney general.... UN official charges Obama's drone wars are illegal and may constitute war crimes.... Florida may stop welfare recipients from spending relief money at strip clubs and casinos.... Ron Paul points out that, despite all the fuss, there's no real difference between the GOP and Democrat budget proposals.... Craig Ferguson on Obama's flying death-dealing spy robots....
PERSUASION POWER POINT #344
Steve Martin's Lesson for Libertarians
ASK DR. RUWART
* Do private toll roads violate our Constitutional right to travel?
ONE-MINUTE LIBERTY TIP
* Immoxelating the DCP: or, How and Why to Avoid Abbreviations and Jargon
WHAT'S HAPPENING WITH THE ADVOCATES
* The Advocates will be at Young Americans for Liberty's spring conventions
* FREE OPH KITS for libertarian student groups!
* Join the Advocates on Twitter
* Join the Advocates on Facebook
* 2013 Freedom Cruises
by Sharon Harris
Spring: Operation Politically Homeless (OPH) Time!
Spring is here! And spring is a great time to take the ideas of liberty to your community, discover new supporters and members for your libertarian organization -- and HAVE FUN doing so.
Operation Politically Homeless -- OPH -- can help you do it.
OPH is the Advocates' acclaimed "event in a kit" that can help you discover dozens or even hundreds of libertarian-leaning folks in your community. OPH is one of the great success stories of the libertarian movement. Hundreds of thousands of people have encountered the ideas of liberty through OPH. And millions more people are out there, just waiting for someone -- maybe you? -- to introduce them to libertarianism.
OPH works like magic. Wherever people are gathered, OPH will attract them. It lets you quickly identify libertarian-leaning individuals and get the names and contact information.
Spring offers special opportunities for OPH, as the warm weather brings people to outdoor events, such as (to name just a few) art fairs, political rallies, music festivals, gun shows, campus gatherings of different kinds…
And one of the most amazing things about OPH is that it's... FUN!
Libertarian outreach -- fun? You bet! Over and over again, OPH users say that:
"I've been doing OPH for several years. I have administered thousands of Quizzes, seen people with all manner of political views, been asked questions ranging from the insightful to the provocative to the absurd, and generally had fun. That's right, I had fun." -- Scott Kjar.
"I ended up staying four hours simply because it was so much fun!" -- Reg Dominy.
"It is fun. Usually we'll have a couple of dozen people standing around the booth, a big crowd. Most of the time people just jump right into it." -- Kirk Applegate, Ohio.
(Read lots more such testimonials here
OPH is a great volunteer activity. Newcomers and veterans alike can do it with ease. Each OPH kit provides everything you need, including banners, posters, Quiz cards and "how-to" training materials.
And OPH is a smash hit on college campuses! We've provided over 700 student libertarian groups with FREE OPH kits -- and they're helping discover thousands of new libertarian-minded students. (Students: find out about our FREE OPH kit offer
We've received dozens of testimonials from student activists and leaders
"OPH is our number one recruiting tool." -- Michael Hurley, California State-Fullerton Young Americans for Liberty chapter
"The reaction to OPH was thrilling. People thronged our table…we got some awesome new recruits." -- Neal Hardin, University of Utah Young Americans for Liberty chapter
"This is awesome! What a great resource for students!" -- Clark Ruper, Vice President, Students for Liberty (SFL)
"The OPH kits are fantastic on campus." -- Corey Hubbard, former Director of Events, Young Americans for Liberty (YAL)
How much stronger would the liberty movement be if hundreds of OPHs were conducted across America this year -- discovering thousands of eager new libertarian activists, supporters, donors and voters?
Somewhere near you, this week, there will be an event -- a political rally, a county fair, a concert, a neighborhood party -- that is PERFECT for OPH. Will OPH be there? It's up to you.
* * *
The purpose of the Liberator Online
is to build a stronger movement for liberty. We do this by providing information about the libertarian movement and how to best communicate the ideas of liberty. Thank you for being a part of this!
Learn more about the Advocates
and our work for liberty.
Learn more about libertarianism
-- the philosophy of liberty.
by James W. Harris
Rand Paul and Libertarians Win Big at CPAC
"At CPAC, The Future Looks Libertarian" - TIME magazine headline.
"Rand Paul, Rock Star: Libertarians Run the Show at CPAC" - Daily Beast headline.
These headlines -- unimaginable just a few years ago -- sum up the revolutionary happenings at the 40th annual Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), March 14, 2013.
Not only did Rand Paul -- fresh from his triumphant 12-hour Senate anti-drone filibuster -- win the CPAC presidential straw poll, the meeting itself was dominated by young Ron Paul Revolution activists who are determined to make liberty once again a burning issue in American politics.
"[T]his year, the Rand Paul Brigades look something like an occupying force. Everywhere one turns, there are 'Stand With Rand' signs, stickers, and T-shirts (a volunteer told me he had handed out a thousand shirts in just over two hours)," reported
the Daily Beast.
CPAC is an annual political conference attended by conservative activists and office holders from across the United States.
Sen. Paul won the presidential straw poll, receiving 25 percent to runner-up Sen. Rubio's (R-FL) 23 percent. The rest of the field of prominent GOP figures -- including household names like Rick Santorum, Chris Christie and Paul Ryan -- received single digit vote totals.
Some pundits have dismissed the poll, noting that it isn't a reliable predictor of electoral success, and pointing out that Ron Paul won in 2010 and 2011. However, it should be noted that those victories presaged the explosion of support for Ron Paul that not only led to his winning the second-greatest number of delegate votes in 2012, but more importantly created the movement now helping drive Rand Paul to national prominence.
Here are excerpts from Rand Paul's speech
"This government is completely out-of-control. We desperately need a new course and new leadership. …We need to jealously guard all of our liberties.
"The Facebook generation can detect falseness and hypocrisy a mile away. They are the core of the 'leave me alone' coalition. …
"They worry about jobs and money, rent and student loans. They want leaders that won't feed them a line of crap or sell them short. They aren't afraid of individual liberty.
"Ask them whether we should put a kid in jail for the nonviolent crime of drug use and you'll hear a resounding 'No!'
"Ask them if they want to bail out Too-Big-To-Fail banks with their tax dollars and you'll hear a 'Hell no!'
"There is nothing conservative about bailing out Wall Street.
"Likewise, there is nothing progressive about billion dollar loans to millionaires to build solar panels. …
"We must stand for something so powerful and so popular that it brings together people from the left and the right and the middle. … The new GOP, the GOP that will win again, will need to embrace liberty in both the economic and personal sphere. …
"There are millions of Americans, young and old, native and immigrant, black, white and brown, who simply seek to live free, free to practice their religion, free to choose where they send their kids to school, free to choose their own healthcare, free to keep the fruit of their own labor, free to live without government constantly being on their back. …
"I will stand for them. I will stand for you. I will stand for our prosperity and our freedom.
"And I ask everyone who values liberty to stand with me."
New Report: How To Cut $1.8 Trillion in Wasteful Spending
As the national debt rockets towards $17 trillion, politicians, journalists and angry citizens are looking for ways to cut out-of-control federal spending.
They should take a serious look at Prime Cuts 2013
, a new report by Citizens Against Government Waste. Citizens Against Government Waste has been publishing the report since 1993, and
implementations from past editions have saved taxpayers $1.3 trillion.
In a mere 48 pages, Prime Cuts 2013 offers 557 ideas that would save taxpayers a whopping $580.6 billion in the first year alone -- and $1.8 trillion over five years. Most citizens would never even miss the cuts and changes the report suggests.
Prime Cuts 2013 spares no area of government spending. A few examples:
* Eliminate the Market Access Program (MAP), a corporate welfare program that funnels millions of dollars to large, profitable corporations. Savings to taxpayers: $1 billion in five years.
* Pull the plug on the Rural Utilities Service, founded in 1935 to bring electricity to rural areas. 1-year savings: $9.6 billion; 5-year savings: $48.1 billion.
* Eliminate other agricultural corporate welfare: sugar subsidies (1-year savings: $1.2 billion; 5-year savings: $6 billion); dairy subsidies (1-year savings: $1.1 billion; 5-year savings: $5.7 billion); and peanut programs (1-year savings: $55 million; 5-year savings: $275 million).
* End the Robert C. Byrd Honors Scholarship program, a redundant scholarship started by a senator famously known as the “King of Pork.” 5-year savings: $210 million.
Nor is wasteful military spending ignored. The report calls for the elimination of numerous worse-than-unnecessary expenditures such as the Medium Extended Air Defense System (MEADS), an outdated program 10 years behind schedule. Eliminating MEADS would save $195 million -- not to mention an astounding $16.5 billion if the project moves to the design, development and procurement stages.
And there’s so much more: Reduce Medicare improper payments by 50 percent (5-year savings: $24 billion); eliminate Community Development Block Grants (5-year savings: $17 billion) eliminate federal subsidies for Amtrak (5-year savings: $7.1 billion)…
The list of wasteful, stupid, corrupt and utterly unjustifiable spending goes on and on. Prime Cuts 2013 explains each cut and why it should be made, in clear, understandable language.
There has never been a better time to start cutting federal spending. Prime Cuts 2013 offers a great blueprint.
VIDEO: Highlights of Rand Paul’s Historic Anti-Drone Filibuster
Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) electrified the country with his inspiring and historic March 6 filibuster on the Senate floor. For nearly 13 hours Paul lambasted the Obama administration's refusal to clarify whether or not the president believes he has the right to target and kill U.S. citizens without oversight.
Sen. Paul won the support of people of all political persuasions concerned about civil liberties and unlimited government power. He also alienated those in his own party who support the militaristic and interventionist policies of the Bush and Obama administrations -- most notably Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), who ridiculed Sen. Paul as a “wacko bird” pulling “political stunts that fire up impressionable libertarian kids."
“#StandWithRand: Rand Paul, Barack Obama, Drones, and Presidential Kill Lists
” is a great short video from ReasonTV that presents a condensed (2 minutes 30 seconds) version of the issues under debate. It features highlights from Sen. Paul’s filibuster, statements by President Obama, and actual drone surveillance footage.
CPAC Poll: End U.S. Military Support for Other Nations
The presidential straw poll at CPAC -- see lead article above -- received a lot of media attention.
Less reported, but perhaps even more significant, were the results
of a poll question concerning the role of the U.S. military in the world.
Attendees were presented with three statements, and asked:
"Which of the following statements comes CLOSEST to your view regarding the United States' role in the world?"
Here are the statements and the percentages that agreed with each:
A startling 50% chose this statement: "Nearly 70 years after the end of World War II, it's time for our European, Asian and other allies to provide for their own defense."
Only 34% chose this statement: "As the world's only superpower, the U.S. needs to continue to bear the responsibility of protecting our allies in Europe, Asia and other parts of the world."
16% chose "Other / DK / Prefer not to say."
This is remarkable -- and another sign that the Ron Paul / Rand Paul / libertarian message -- which just a few years ago was not even part of the political debate -- is rapidly winning supporters and gaining momentum.
* * * * * * * *
Intellectual Ammunition is written by Liberator Online editor James W. Harris. His articles have appeared in numerous magazines and newspapers, and he has been a Finalist for the Mencken Awards, given by the Free Press Association for "Outstanding Journalism in Support of Liberty."
They Said It...
SOCIALISM PAID OFF FOR CHAVEZ:
"We're learning more about the dead Venezuelan dictator Hugo Chavez. It seems he amassed about $2 billion in personal fortune while president -- and he was a socialist. Imagine how rich he could have been if he didn't believe in redistribution of wealth." -- Jay Leno, March 12, 2013.
U.S. ATTORNEY GENERAL SAYS SOME BUSINESSES TOO BIG TO PROSECUTE:
"The size of some of these institutions becomes so large that it does become difficult for us to pr
osecute them when we are hit with indications that, if you do prosecute, if you do bring a criminal charge, it will have a negative impact on the national economy." -- U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder
arguing before Congress that some businesses are too big to fail and too big to jail, March 6, 2013, as reported in The Hill newspaper.
UN OFFICIAL SAYS PAKISTAN DRONE KILLINGS ILLEGAL, OBAMA MAY BE COMMITTING WAR CRIMES:
"[It is] alleged that since President Obama took office at least 50 civilians were killed in follow-up strikes when they had gone to help victims and more than 20 civilians have also been attacked in deliberate strikes on funerals and mourners. [UN investigator] Christof Heyns... has described such attacks, if they prove to have happened, as war crimes. I would endorse that view. …As a matter of international law the U.S. drone campaign in Pakistan is… being conducted without the consent of the elected representatives of the people, or the legitimate government of the state. It involves the use of force on the territory of another state without its consent and is therefore a violation of Pakistan's sovereignty." -- Ben Emmerson
, United Nations special rapporteur on human rights and counter-terrorism, quoted by John Glaser at Antiwar.com, March 15, 2013.
RON PAUL -- NO DIFFERENCE BETWEEN ELEPHANT AND DONKEY BUDGETS:
"Contrary to claims, neither party's budget reduces spending. …So is there a great gulf between the two parties' budgets for next year? No. For fiscal year 2014, the Democrat budget proposes spending $3.7 trillion, while the 'radical' Republican budget spends $3.5 trillion!" -- Ron Paul
, "The Congressional Budget Debate Is Just A Sideshow," March 18 column.
NO, IT'S NOTHING LIKE THAT:
"A New York City judge struck down a proposed law to ban sodas larger than 16 ounces. … How would the government try to enforce something like that? It's not like
Obama's got a secret fleet of robotic aircraft circling over, watching everything people do with little cameras." -- Craig Ferguson, The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson, March 12, 2013.
* * * * * * * * * *
"They Said It..." is compiled by Liberator Online editor James W. Harris.
Steve Martin's Lesson for Libertarians
by Michael Cloud
Would you like to write libertarian blog posts that regularly pull in 250,000 readers?
Want to attract 100,000 YouTube viewers of your libertarian speech?
How would you feel if you wrote a libertarian book that sold 500,000 or 1,000,000 copies?
Want to become the
libertarian guest that the most popular cable TV shows and talk radio shows are fighting to get?
It is possible.
It is simple.
But it's not easy.
Legendary comedian Steve Martin explains how in just seven words:
"Be so go
od they can't ignore you."
How do you achieve that?
1. Make a list of every major book written about the libertarian area you want to excel in -- and read them all.
2. Access, borrow, or buy every excellent libertarian performance -- speech, debate, or interview -- that's available on video or audio. Watch, listen to, and study each recording. What is the speaker doing -- and how is he doing it? Write down what you learn.
3. Analyze how the writers and speakers produce their effects. Experiment with their methods, their patterns. Do you get similar results?
4. Practice, practice, practice each technique until it is second nature to you.
If you read/study 30 minutes each weekday, and practice 30 minutes each weekday -- in just 2 months, your friends and fellow libertarians will notice and comment on your improvement.
If you do this for 2 years, you will be nationally known and in demand from coast to coast.
As Steve Martin notes, you will become "so good they can't ignore you."
Want to explore this concept further? I suggest the book So Good They Can't Ignore You: Why Skills Trump Passion in the Quest for Work You Love by Cal Newport.
* * * * * * * *
Michael Cloud's brand-new book Unlocking More Secrets of Libertarian Persuasion is available exclusively from the Advocates, along with his acclaimed earlier book Secrets of Libertarian Persuasion.
In 2000, Michael was honored with the Thomas Paine Award as the Most Persuasive Libertarian Communicator in America.
Dr. Mary Ruwart is a leading expert in libertarian communication. In this column she offers short answers to real questions about libertarianism. To submit questions to Dr. Ruwart, see end of column.
Do private toll roads violate our Constitutional right to travel?
Ask Dr. Ruwart
I am a libertarian, and I agree with downsizing government and eliminating taxes. But the one concept I cannot seem to grasp is user fees for roads.
Am I to understand that if I travel from California to the eastern seaboard, using my own transportation, I am liable to pay a tariff for every privately-owned little stretch of highway along the way?
I was led to believe that one of our basic rights was the right to free travel, without restriction of any kind. The principle of user fees seems to me to be a restriction on that right and in direct conflict with our Constitution. Please clarify!
MY SHORT ANSWER:
The Constitutional right to free travel means that the government
will not forbid you to go where you please or restrict you by making you get a visa or other documentation to travel from state to state. For example, in the former Soviet Union, most long-distance travel required government permission.
Toll roads in a libertarian society would be private property; therefore, the owners could require some payment in return for permission to use them. After all, the owners would have had to put up the money to build or purchase the road in the first place!
Today, of course, you and other taxpayers put up the money to build the roads -- with the promise of free access. In theory, gasoline taxes pay for the roads; in practice, much of this money is wasted or diverted elsewhere.
Even today, if someone wants to cross your personal
property instead of going around it, you'd want them to ask permission first. If they were going to use your property a great deal, you'd probably ask for compensation as well. Charging people to cross your personal property doesn't conflict with their right to travel freely without government interference. Charging people to travel on roads that you or your company built wouldn't conflict with their right to travel freely, either.
Undoubtedly, road companies would work out an arrangement to prevent motorists from being stopped whenever the ownership changed (e.g., electronic billing, licensing that allowed statewide access, etc.). After all, keeping the customer happy is good business!
Suggested further readings on this topic from Liberator Online editor James W. Harris:
FREE EBOOK: The Privatization of Roads and Highways
by Walter Block.
One of today’s greatest libertarian thinkers offers a remarkable treatise on private roads, a 494-page book that will cause you to rethink the whole of the way modern transportation networks operate. It is bold, innovative, radical, compelling, and persuasive. This is the first-ever book devoted to this topic, and it answers all the common questions.
Block makes a lengthy, detailed, and positive case that the privatization of roads would be a fantastic improvement over the current government road monopoly. It would save lives, curtail pollution, save us money, save us massive time, introduce accountability, and make transportation a pleasure instead of a huge pain in the neck.
You can download it as a free ebook or order a print copy by clicking on the title above. Thanks to the publisher, the Mises Institute, for making this wonderful book available.
* * * * * * * * * *
Dr. Ruwart has answers! If you'd like answers to YOUR "tough questions" on libertarian issues, email Dr. Ruwart at: ruwart@theAdvocates.org
Due to volume, Dr. Ruwart can't personally acknowledge all emails. But we'll run the best questions and answers in upcoming issues.
Dr. Ruwart's previous Liberator Online answers are archived in searchable form
Dr. Ruwart's brand new book Short Answers to the Tough Questions
, Expanded Edition is available from the Advocates, as is her acclaimed classic Healing Our World
One-Minute Liberty Tip
By Sharon Harris
Immoxelating the DCP: or, How and Why to Avoid Abbreviations and Jargon
Abbreviations and jargon serve important purposes. For one thing, they make communication quicker. Why say “Libertarian Party” or “National Security Agency” every time you refer to them, when you can abbreviate with LP or NSA?
However, it is important to remember that, for some people, these will be new terms. And such acronyms and abbreviations can keep your listeners from understanding what you’re trying to say.
You may think that everyone knows that the Fed is the Federal Reserve System, that the CIA is the Central Intelligence Agency, and that the POTUS is the President of the United States. And so on.
But for every person, there is a first time for encountering these terms. And it could well be in your article, speech or conversation.
For that matter, even the most knowledgeable reader might be put off by something like: “NPR reported that the POTUS and VPOTUS discussed CIA concerns about a CFR paper describing the Fed…” You've lost your readers or listeners before you even get to what the FLOTUS and SCOTUS had to say about it.
So do your audience -- and yourself -- a favor. The first time you use a name in print that you intend to abbreviate, spell it out. Like this: “The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) reported today…”
After that, you can use CIA in your article with the certainty that it is clear to everyone who reads it.
Similarly, in speaking, be aware of your audience’s level of familiarity. It is far better to be too careful and state the full name rather than use a breezy acronym and be completely misunderstood.
As for jargon -- words and phrases that are unique to a particular activity or group -- the liberty movement is full of it.
Consider: TANSTAAFL, ZAP (Zero Aggression Principle), NatCom, Rothbardian, Randian, minarchist, non-aggression axiom… to name a few.
Of course these are very useful, and sometimes fun, terms, in their place. But when speaking to the public at large, and to newcomers to the liberty movement, they will often be confusing, intimidating and perhaps even annoying, unless explained.
Further, the use of them in general audiences can create an exclusive, insider, members-only atmosphere that can make newcomers and others feel excluded and unwanted. And that's the last thing we want to do.
So give these listeners a break. Speak in language they’ll understand. When you do use jargon among such listeners, take a moment to explain what you mean in regular, ordinary human-being-type language.
Remember, YRSTWL! Or, as the XRG once put it, “Dogs whistle when the rain turns pink.”
* * * * * *
Sharon Harris is president of the Advocates for Self-Government.
What's Happening with the Advocates
March and April:
The Advocates will be at Young Americans for Liberty's spring conventions at campuses across the country. Check out the list
of schools and join us at one near you!
FREE OPH KITS FOR LIBERTARIAN STUDENT GROUPS:
Thanks to the generosity of our supporters, we're giving our acclaimed OPH (Operation Political Homeless) outreach kits
to libertarian student groups FREE -- if they simply promise to use them a minimum of three times a year and send us photos documenting their OPH activity. OPH -- praised as the best recruiting tool in the libertarian movement -- normally sells for $50.00.
If you're in a student libertarian group, click here
for more information on getting your free OPH kit.
JOIN US ON TWITTER:
Twitter is the first place to learn about breaking Advocates and liberty movement news, expert communications tips, and exclusive Advocates discounts and specials. (And don't worry -- we won't bombard you with tweets. We're keeping it fun, fast, and useful.)
Go to the Advocates Twitter account
and click the "follow" button below our picture. Thanks!
JOIN THE ADVOCATES ON FACEBOOK:
The Advocates Facebook offers you a chance to share your ideas on liberty, meet some great people and show your support for the Advocates for Self-Government and liberty. Join us and you'll receive regular Facebook updates on Advocates news, communication tips, and special offers for our Facebook friends.
2013 FREEDOM CRUISES:
Advocates Board Secretary and long-time libertarian leader Dr. Ken Bisson invites you to join him for a Freedom Cruise in May 2013 and/or January 26, 2014. Enjoy a wonderful trip on a luxury cruiser -- at a bargain rate! Great food and fine company. Non-libertarians welcome! There's just one stateroom left for the May 2013 "Castles Along the Rhine" cruise -- so hurry if you're interested! On January 26, 2014 the 17th Annual Freedom Cruise embarks: a 7-day Holland America voyage to excellent snorkeling destinations Grand Cayman and Cozumel, with visits to Key West and Half Moon Cay as well, all on Holland America's newest cruise ship! (These aren't Advocates events, but libertarians who have been on past cruises rave about them.) Ken offers two other February 2014 cruises as well. For photos and more details -- or to sign up for free, no-pressure, no-commitment email updates -- visit Freedom Cruises
THE LIBERATOR ONLINE, created by James W. Harris and Paul Schmidt, is the official newsletter of the Advocates for Self-Government.
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