LPM Online

July 4, 2006

  1. Upcoming Events

    July 05, 2006 - 7:00 PM
    Due to varying uncontrollable events this week's LPWC business meeting will be delayed by one week. However there will be a social meeting on Wednesday 7/5/06 at Cottage Inn Restaurant on William Street downtown Ann Arbor at 7PM somewhere on the restaurant floor for all those wishing to attend. Topics will include election planning for 2006 and ideas for the newsletter-please everyone send in articles. Sign-up sheets will also be available for Art fair volunteers. I invite everyone to attend and bring your friends!
    Location: Cottage Inn Restaurant on William Street downtown Ann Arbor
    Contact: Thomas A. Bagwell Phone: (734) 678-5040 Email: lpwcchair@yahoo.com

    July 06, 2006 - 6:30 PM
    The Libertarian Party of Wayne (and Monroe)County holds it's regular monthy meetings at 6:30 pm. on the first Thursday of every month.
    Location: City Tavern Restaurant in Dearborn at 14316 Michigan Ave., between Greenfield and Schaefer
    Contact: David Nagy Phone: (734) 427-1989 Email: lpmdnagy@juno.com

    July 09, 2006 - 12:00 AM
    Lloyd Sherman Victory Picnic Flyer Link http://michiganlp.org/Picnic.pdf Our friend Lloyd is fighting Lymphoma. Will you please help Lloyd win this battle? Come to the Lloyd Sherman Victory Picnic and help us raise funds to help Lloyd declare VICTORY over cancer!!! Hot Dogs, Hamburgers, Chips, Corn, Pop & beer, 50/50 Raffle, Door Prizes, Karaoke, Horseshoes, Moonwalk,and Playground. Noon to 7:00 PM Can’t attend? We’ll miss you, but you can still help. Send a contribution to: Lloyd Sherman Victory Fund c/o Royal Oakland Community Credit Union 3070 Normandy Royal Oak, MI 48073
    Location: Scout Park - Russell and Otis 22749 Russell Ave, Hazel Park, MI 48030, US
    Contact: Andy LeCureaux Phone: 248-225-7372 Email: andrew-7@comcast.net

    July 11, 2006 - 7:30 PM
    Monthly meeting of the Capital Area Libertarian Party. No agenda, general discussion open to all regardless of member status.
    Location: Barley's, 727 E Miller Rd., Lansing
    Contact: Will Tyler White Phone: 517 349-3806 Email: whitewi5@msu.edu

    July 12, 2006 - 7:00 PM
    The Libertarian Party of West Michigan will be holding its monthly business meeting. All members and their guests are welcome and encouraged to attend. The agenda will include fundraising plans, the liberty banquet, and campaign advertising and general strategy.
    Location: IHOP on East Beltline in Grand Rapids.
    Contact: Eric Larson Phone: 616-949-2844 Email: chair@lpwm.org

    July 13, 2006 - 6:00 PM
    The Libertarian Party of Southwest Michigan will be holding it's monthly meeting to discuss topics such as the July 4 Liberty Float. Everyong is invited. Dinner is optional.
    Location: We will be meeting at the Benton Harbor IHOP just west of I-94
    Contact: Bill Bradley Phone: 269-637-4525 Email: wbradley@i2k.com

    July 15, 2006 - 11:00 AM
    Fourth St. Fair: Libertarian Information booth, Hosted by the Creswell/Boman campaign. This is an all day Street Fair. An opportunity to reach voters in an informal open-minded setting.
    Location: Fourth St. Between Antionette and I-94.
    Contact: Scotty Boman Phone: 313-247-2052 Email: scottyeducation@yahoo.com

    July 19, 2006 - 00:00 AM
    Ann Arbor Art Fair. July 19th through July 22nd. Help with our information booth.
    Location: Downtown Ann Arbor
    Contact: Thomas Bagwell Phone: (734) 678-5040 Email: lpwcchair@yahoo.com

    July 26, 2006 - 7:30 PM
    Libertarian Party of Oakland County monthly meeting. Optional dinner at 6:30. Meeting at 7:30.
    Location: Sila's Restaurant, 4033 W. 12 Mile, 2 blocks east of Greenfield, in Berkley.
    Contact: Chris Watson Phone: 586-203-9608 Email: c.j.watson@comcast.net

    August 08, 2006 - 08:00 AM
    Primary elections. An excellent chance to reach active voters (especially on exit). Some local offices and mileages may also be up to a vote.
    Location: All around the state.
    Contact: Scotty Boman Phone: 313-247-2052 Email: scottyeducation@yahoo.com

    For more events, see the online calendar at:

  2. Website Help — by Eric Larson

    The Libertarian Party of West Michigan is offering web site assistance to all federal and state wide candidates. We will provide a free professional web page to those interested along with help to add the content. Please contact me by email to set up the site. chair@lpwm.org. To view a sample site go to erwinhass.lpwm.org or billhall.lpwm.org
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  3. Web site offer — by Eric Larson

    The LP of West Michigan is still offering a free web site to any party member running for statewide or federal office this fall. We so far have had three candidates start working on their sites. For further info email me at chair@lpwm.org or phone 616-949-2844.
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  4. Reviving The Libertarian Party — by Scotty Boman

    Breaking News: All is not well with the Libertarian Party. I am sure to hear from people who think openly writing about this, will only make matters worse… as if living in denial ever makes anything better. For one thing, we have the lowest membership since I joined in the late 1980’s. For another, we miss valuable opportunities while bickering among ourselves. Tossing away the lion’s share of our platform at the national convention is only the latest in a series of embarrassing debacles.

    On the bright side, we have people in office. It would seem that this fact alone would help grow the party, not shrink it. So why no growth? I don't wish to whine or belittle the work of my fellow Libertarians. Thank you for hanging in there through this challenging time. Rather I am deliberately shining light on this problem, because the first step to fixing something is admitting it is broken.

    First of all, lets compare strategies during our time of growth, to our strategies during our decline. When the Party lost its ballot access, in 1992 (because of the “Top of Ticket” rule and Andre Marrou’s vote total), we had as much or more visibility than we do now. We were primarily an educational organization with a well-defined political philosophy, and candidates were our best-known teachers. Note: Our vote totals were not appreciably lower, than in our most recent election. In fact other states such as New Hampshire and Alaska even had BIG “L” Libertarians in their legislatures! However, we were more concerned with promoting the philosophy than winning elections.

    Enter Jon Coon. Jon and his legendary campaign manager Barbara Goushaw (now Collins) organized us into a politically savvy force, while not giving an inch on principle. Jon even said he was against drug laws, while organizing a huge (10,000 attended) gun rally that featured Ted (DARE) Nugent as a speaker. The strategy. Find the disaffected people, who find both parties have turned their backs on hot button issues. Issues that Libertarians hold to as a matter of principle. His US senate campaign earned over 4% of the vote statewide. Note: He lost the election, but radically grew the party. Once people joined because of their concern for gun rights, or freedom from taxation, they found themselves in the trenches with people they never dreamed of being around. They learned that the philosophy that legitimized their freedom demanded that they respect other freedoms.

    Our organization continued to grow, as did our optimism. Coon followed up his senate effort with the most intensive state representative campaign in Michigan's history. Yet he still fell far behind the Democratic incumbent.
    The lesson was clear, most people were not going to break rank with the Democrats and Republicans, no matter how good the candidate or his campaign. The answer. Non-partisan campaigns for local office.

    Success in this regard is undeniable. I congratulate our elected and appointed officials in non-partisan offices around the state. Please don’t think I don’t appreciate you! I do. The idea is that if someone could be accepted as an office holder without the party label, that he or she could then run as a Libertarian and win. Well, at least I thought that was the idea.

    During the past few years though, it seems almost as though we are embarrassed by our extreme advocacy of individual freedom. I am not picking on anyone, nor do I deny my own complicity in this folly. Excuse me if I paraphrase a republican, but, “moderation in the defense of liberty is no virtue.” Their seemed to be a prevailing wisdom, that we might scare people away from the party if they knew about our libertarian ideas! Somehow we should soften our message and crutch it down into a scrumptious purée for the masses. I could stomach this, if more people could ultimately be more open to our message of liberty.

    Well it didn’t work. Why not? People don’t join minor parties out of a desire to be mainstream, or even to win elections. Major parties are better at that. People join minor parties because they can’t stand voting for anyone else. They have an issue they care about deeply and refuse to compromise on. How do I know this? Because if they were willing to compromise, they would vote Democrat or Republican. People don’t devote their lives, fortunes and sacred honor to some upgraded hybrid of what they already have. They have passion for a cause. We attract new members whenever we catch the ear of someone who feels completely marginalized because no one supports their right to keep and bear arms, or their choice to use medical marijuana, or their principled opposition to taxation. It is no coincidence that our membership grew while we had an anti-gun president, and waned as George Bush let the Sun set on the assault weapon ban.

    Could it be that the voice of all those "gun nuts" was heard, because they defected from the Republicans and voted for Libertarians?

    Membership grows before elections. If we don’t build now, this party will whither on the vine. We have an issue: The Michigan Civil Rights Initiative. No major candidates want to touch it, but it's more popular with Michiganders than assault rifles! We can take votes from the major parties again. Again they may adopt our views to get those votes back.

    That won’t win us an election, but it will help us hold onto a tiny bit more Liberty. If this party is to die, I would much rather see it loose relevance because the major parties decided to be more libertarian, than to rot from within, by gradually assimilating the views of Democrats and Republicans.

    The solution. Contrast ourselves from the other parties. Speak for those who's favorite liberties are not being defended by Republicans or Democrats. Use our substantial funds to run radio ads or full-page advertisements. Promoting our principled support of liberty.
    On August 8th we can greet active voters as they exit the primaries. Fifty percent will be open to our message of equal rights. Will we be washouts, or will we catch the wave?
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