The Libertarian Party is under a coordinated national attack from the outside.
by Thomas R. Eddlem
Everyone says “Ron Paul was right” all the time. So let me be the first to say this:
Maj Toure was right.
Back in May, at the Mises Bash at the Reno Libertarian National Convention, Toure told a very excited audience:
“You’re about to change America. That means you’re the enemy of the state. [audience cheering] I hear a lot of very spirited energy. And that’s good. That’s cute. Pretty soon, the two wings of the bird that we are in, are going to start dropping off bags of money to some of you. Some of you will be threatened. Some of you will be intimidated. Some of you are going to fold. I hope, pray, meditate, is that it’s none of us. But my time in Philadelphia tells me that everybody with a gun is not a shooter.
…They have an unlimited amount of resources. You are a threat.”
In Massachusetts, Libertarian Party members had already encountered first-hand the same kind of intimidation tactics that Maj Toure was talking about. We had seen the state committee cheat and violate its own constitution and by-laws in order to disenfranchise and expel Libertarian Party members who would have voted most of them out of office. We’d seen them threaten us with lawsuits for claiming to remain Libertarian Party members. We saw that same leadership after the convention steal – and then squander – the party’s financial and intellectual property resources. A similar thing happened before the Reno convention in Delaware, and to a lesser extent in Vermont.
Since the convention, there have been coup attempts in Idaho and Virginia, and a secession movement in New Mexico, always – as before Reno – by a tiny coterie of leaders.
Let’s make no mistake about it: The Libertarian Party is under a nationally coordinated attack, and it’s an attack from outside the organization using a handful of people who happened to be leaders under the ancien regime. Attacks on more states are possible.
Unlike the Mises Caucus organizers over the past few years, who urged more people to join the Libertarian Party, these people are urging full exit from the party. The effort to get libertarians to exit the Libertarian Party – in a risible attempt to get the party to implode – proves these people were never really capital-L Libertarians. More importantly, it is a self-admission they can’t recruit in numbers sufficient to win back control of the party.
Remember that: They know they don’t have the numbers to win, and they know they never will.
In fact, it’s becoming increasingly clear tell about how exceptionally small this outside group really is.
And we have a good example right here in Massachusetts.
In Massachusetts, we actually have a person who is willing to put forward his own Toureian “bag of money” in his attack against the Libertarian Party. Peter Everett – who voted in June to disaffiliate his rump “libertarian” group from the national party – fronted more than $75,000 of his own money to buy himself and his wife Cristina Crawford onto the ballot in the Massachusetts November election.
Other than himself, his wife, and fellow purger/rump board member Derek Newhall, (according to the latest campaign finance reports) he has only six donors statewide – in a state of six million people. Peter Everett is literally one-in-a-million, and not in a good way.
Contrast this with Rhode Island’s Libertarian Elijah Gizzarelli, who paid nothing for the 1,000 signatures needed to get on the ballot as governor, because they were all collected by volunteers. Everett and his “slate,” which includes his wife Cris Crawford (who is running for state treasurer), have no volunteers to call upon. It’s the clearest case-study of the difference between the grass-roots and astro-turf.
And while getting himself on the ballot has helped get Ben Schattenburg – a 2014 Green Party candidate for Maine’s state legislature – rich, it accomplished zero for the Libertarian Party. There’s only one idea behind Everett’s kamikaze vanity campaign: Gain three percent of the vote on the November ballot in an effort to deny the national Libertarian Party presidential nominee in 2024 ballot access as a “Libertarian.”
Yes, he’s willing to blow $75,000 of his own money to make the Libertarian Party presidential nominee in 2024 get on the ballot as “National Libertarian” or “Independent Libertarian” or some other such thing. (I’m personally rooting for “Legitimate Libertarian.”)
It really is that shallow, and that vain. I kid you not.
Suffice it to say that the Libertarian Party of Massachusetts is not endorsing either Everett or Crawford’s candidacies.
And why would we?
Cris Crawford was organizer/treasurer of her rump micro-faction’s April 23 “state convention,” she blew through more than $19k on the convention which they claimed 32 people attended (including one of our board members attending as an observer). That’s more than $600 per head for those counting, and the Sheraton served them cold cuts (a baloney sandwich?) for lunch — I’m not kidding– and an apple with the supermarket sticker still on it.
$600 for a baloney sandwich isn’t exactly tight fiscal management experience for someone running to become a treasurer, though – come to think of it – Crawford might fit in better than expected on Beacon Hill.
Crawford & Everett – even though the couple may sound like the name of a craft store for fragrant soaps – are probably much more corrupt than the Republicans and Democrats running for the same offices.
Crawford & Everett are part of a group of people who think the Libertarian Party is their proprietary country club. And now they are crying because we’ve shown them the reality that it’s not so. And these wealthy pricks, who think that because they have money that they can buy the party and expel the plebes, are now being milked by the professionals attacking the party.
I should be clear about who I mean when I talk about attacking the party from the outside. I’m not talking about the whiners in Facebook groups or Twitt Trolls, people who mostly left the LP years ago and who do no work other than complaining on social media. Their only weapon is a Facebook laugh emoji.
They don’t matter.
But there’s a smaller group with money, most of whom can easily be identified because they were mostly sporting the Ukrainian flag on their social media profile pics this past spring, who are organizing against the Libertarian Party. I’m talking more about the professional organizers, people like Nick Sarwark.
Sarwark was, admittedly, once the head of the LNC for several terms a few years back. And Nick Sarwark did labor for quite a while in the party, dutifully keeping it nationally irrelevant.
And give him his due: Sarwark did provide one very valuable service to libertarianism in his decade of constant laboring within the Libertarian Party: With his Libertarian Party service, he personally re-proved the invalidity of Marx’s labor theory of value.
We in Massachusetts stand with our Libertarian brothers and sisters in Idaho, Virginia and New Mexico who actually want a Libertarian Party that fights the state, and not one that shrinks from the challenge by leaving the party.
This attack will in short order make the Libertarian Party stronger, by self-outing and self-exiting the agents-provocateurs and wokist fakertarians, making our movement more attractive to genuine liberty-loving Americans just dying to find an organization that is willing to grind down the power of the state.
Of course, we’re just in the first phase of the attack on the Libertarian Party. There will be more attacks, and from more official sources, as the party becomes a more credible threat to the Military-Industrial-Surveillance Complex (MISC).
Thus far, though Maj Toure was right about how they’re going to come after us, he’s been wrong in prediction about how Massachusetts Libertarians will react to the onslaught (you have to watch the speech – by far the best at the Mises bash – to get this comment).
We intend on proving him wrong as time goes forward. And we expect Libertarian Party members in other states will prove him wrong in this respect as well.
Thomas R. Eddlem is Communications Director for the Libertarian Party of Massachusetts.