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Archive for the ‘Robert Milnes’ Category

The Libertarian Party has started a new fundraising campaign called “Liberty Decides ‘08“. Basically, all Libertarian presidential candidates who have met certain guidelines (age-qualified, member of the LP, filed with the FEC, and raise at least $5000 for ballot access) are listed for competition (with one exception, since Dr. George Phillies chose to decline participation). People then “vote” for those candidates by making a donation in that candidate’s name. Each vote equals $1, so the more you contribute, the more votes you get to cast.There is no requirement that the donations/votes come from a registered member of the LP, or even that the voters claim to be a libertarian (many libertarians are not registered with the Libertarian Party, since that would remove their right to vote in many state primaries). The Libertarian Party will keep 60% of the money collected, while the eventual presidential nominee will get the remaining 40%, to be used in promoting the Libertarian Party.

There are a number of glaringly obvious problems with this competition.

Right off the bat, I can tell you that there are candidates listed there who have not raised $5000, period. However, if they left out candidates who hadn’t accomplished that yet, there would only be three candidates listed. I’ll get to those candidates in a moment.

There is no indication how many individual contributions each candidate received, and the competition is not set up to gauge support in that manner. This is important for several reasons, not the least of which is that there is no way to tell if the candidates received contributions from others, or if all their funds came from them. While at first glance it would seem unethical for the candidates to contribute to themselves in a competition, since that normally would be viewed as rigging the results, there is in fact nothing stopping the candidates from using their own funds. The rules quite specifically state, “Donations from the candidates will be counted towards funds raised”.

Given that three of the candidates have a great deal of money (specifically the ones sitting in the top three right now) there is absolutely no way for anyone to tell if those candidates simply contributed to themselves, though it definitely appears that they have done exactly that. Furthermore, allowing candidates to contribute to themselves places the wealthy candidates at an unfair advantage, and explains the current results.

The current frontrunners are Wayne Allyn Root, Mike Jingozian, and Daniel Imperato. However, I have seen no indication whatsoever that those three have any significant following. Quite the contrary, since all three have been subjected to a great deal of negative opinion from libertarians.

Imperato in particular is a candidate who has no discernible support, and his “press releases” are met with a great deal of laughter and derision, including from Yours Truly. Many others across the blogosphere have voiced their concern that Imperato may not be completely sane, though he does have enough money to rig the competition with ease. He is now in third place, undoubtedly due to contributing to himself.

Root is new to the LP, and even still has a website called “Millionaire Republican”; as a result he is viewed with suspicion, and is considered to be a Republican by most. Furthermore, Root is running on what is primarily a pro-gambling platform, since he is a Vegas oddsmaker. While libertarians believe gambling should not be illegal, one cannot run a presidential campaign on that stance alone, and some of his other ideas are hardly libertarian. For example, he is pro-war (and as a matter of fact, regularly uses his initials, which spell “WAR”, in place of his name), whereas libertarians adopt a strict non-interventionist policy. Root is currently in first place, also undoubtedly due to contributing to himself.

Jingozian is simply not very well known. I recall reading his site back when his candidacy first came to my attention, and I got the distinct impression that his views are a cross between the Greens and the Libertarians. Few libertarians will support a fusion candidate. By necessity Green goals require governmental intrusion upon our property rights, whereas libertarians believe the government’s only proper activity is to protect our rights. A successful businessman, Jingozian is in second place, also undoubtedly because he contributed to himself.

That the three wealthiest candidates – who have no chance of actually gaining widespread support among LP members – would appear to be winning was a completely foreseeable situation, given how the competition is designed; and it is inevitable that those candidates will contribute to themselves, then use that poll to falsely state they are a “frontrunner” in the race for the LP nomination. It is equally strange that, based on my own estimate of those candidates’ personal wealth, they are in exactly the order I would expect.

That’s a very serious problem, not only because misrepresentations about their own support among LP members might mislead people who are not already familiar with the candidates, but also because as discussed, those candidates who are winning have some decidedly un-libertarian ideas which will undoubtedly reflect very poorly on the LP as a whole.

This poll may also have a very strange effect on the Libertarian Convention. If delegates vote pursuant to what their constituents want, they cannot in good conscience ignore an official LP poll, especially since they may not realize that the wealthy candidates are contributing to themselves, as that information is not available on the same page as the competition. The actual rules are contained in a PDF file.

As much as I disapprove of the LP keeping the majority of the contributions for itself, and stipulating that the other 40% must be used to the LP’s advantage, that does explain why they are allowing candidates to contribute to themselves since there are three wealthy candidates who would get little if any support otherwise.

Another matter of concern is that, according to the rules, the poll counts funds raised since each candidate announced their campaign, including any funds raised by an exploratory committee. That gives an advantage to candidates who announced early, though as it is that early advantage is canceled out by the wealthier candidates who contribute to themselves. Again, it is impossible to ascertain the amount of actual support each candidate has during the course of the competition, which negates any possible usefulness the competition might otherwise have.

Last but not least, even in a poll where actual money is involved, “None Of The Above” rated fourth (for those of you not familiar with the Libertarian Party, delegates can actually vote for NOTA rather than to nominate a candidate). Quite honestly, I think it’s a very popular choice in this presidential election, and if not for the three wealthy candidates contributing to themselves, it would be ranked firmly in first place. NOTA is almost $2000 ahead of the next most popular candidate, which is “Future candidate”; in other words, those contributing to this competition (not counting the first three who are obviously contributing to themselves) by far prefer none of the candidates. NOTA and FC, if placed into one category as it should be, would be roughly equivalent to the current third-place competitor who contributed to himself, and firmly in first place if the three wealthy candidates were discounted due to contributing to themselves.

That says a lot.

Can the serious LP candidates overcome this negativity, based in a lack of excitement about the announced candidates, and a great deal of excitement about Ron Paul, who is running as a Republican? I honestly don’t know, but I somehow doubt it. The LP may end up not nominating a presidential candidate for 2008.

_______________________

Sources:
Last Free Voice
Libertarian Party
Originally posted on Adventures In Frickintardistan

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Robert Milnes

First I’d like to say that by far the most important development in the libertarian race thus far is “The Libertarian Vote” study published by The Cato Institute. See: http://www.cato.org/pub_display.php?pub_id=6735 Briefly, 20% of voters are libertarian leaning at the beginning of the election cycle (Gallup Governance Survey). 13% are reliably libertarian. 1% wind up actually voting Libertarian. My own conclusion is that 7% of the 20% are leftists. Further, I estimate the leftist vote as 27% which leaves 20% left, 20% right i.e. 40% possible progressive vote. If you understand this study, you understand a lot about the Progressive Alliance Strategy and what is happening with Ron Paul. Paul has tapped into this initial cycle 20%. It represents a kind of “glass ceiling” which no Libertarian can penetrate. This is why I believe it cannot last and Ron Paul cannot get the GOP nomination. Now, I believe, and I have read others about this, that Ron Paul’ s positions actually fit best in the Constitution Party. Kubby correctly describes Paul as a “right-wing libertarian” & I enjoyed his description of the Libertarian Party as like a plane with only a right wing. Kubby wants to reach out to leftists but he wants their vote and support but offers them little compared to an actual agreement (alliance).The Progressive Alliance Strategy calls for a left-libertarian presidential candidate OR a Green. Briefly, this strategy calls for cooperation between the inclusive Green and Libertarian Parties in order to garner the 40% progressive vote. One Green OR Libertarian on EVERY ballot, so as not to split the vote; first come, first served. The executive ticket is more complicated but the most simple strategy would be for the Green Party to endorse the Libertarian ticket as it will probably garner more ballot access. Clearly in all this Paul’s candidacy is an anomaly and an unfortunate complication. He is drawing libertarian support from the libertarians to the GOP. If we further assume a working hypothesis that there are about 50% right and left libertarians, Paul is getting most right and many left libertarian support (70%). I am convinced the LibertarianLists poll is fairly accurate. See: http://www.libertarianlists.com/surveyresult1 In all of this in my opinion Kubby’s endorsement of Ron Paul’s candidacy is a huge strategic blunder. He should call for, as I do, for libertarians to cease their support for Ron Paul. He is diverting libertarian support to the GOP. He is not a good progressive alliance candidate.In fact, if he gets the LP and/or the Constitution Party nomination, he could ruin (spoiler) a Progressive Alliance attempt at victory.”All Together Now” should mean all the LP candidates call for libertarians to cease support for Ron Paul. Kubby wants his cake & eat it too. He endorses Ron Paul yet says”I’m still running for president”. Also that if Paul wins the GOP nomination, he “…will withdraw, ask the party to nominate “None of the Above”… and work as a volunteer on Paul’s…campaign.” If not, he will”…continue preparing to give the LP the best presidential campaign I can…”. I, on the other hand, will not endorse Ron Paul and continue to offer all progressives the reasonable chance of election victory. For further information about my candidacy, See; http://www.robertmilnes.net
WE ARE IN TO WIN.

That’s all well and good, and his point is just as valid as anyone else’s on this topic, but this is as good a time as any to say that voters have a right to know about Robert Milnes’ very serious criminal record (which he doesn’t try to hide, to his credit, but it’s the nature of the crime about which voters have a right – and may even have a need – to be informed since he is running for President). Milnes spent about four years in federal prison. Here’s his description of what happened, from his biography page on http://www.robertmilnes4president:

But then I got tripped up by the FBI. They arrested me on charges related to several fan letters I had written to a local Philadelphia TV anchorwoman, Deborah Knapp. She had married present day Congressman Henry Bonilla, R-Texas. Of course I suspected this was a colateral attack on me by the FBI for political reasons, but I could not articulate that or convince my court appointed federal defender. He convinced me to plead guilty to one count. This was a big mistake. I was sent to FCI Butner, N.C. in 1985. I actually read “The Age of Surveillance” in prison! Eventually I got “maxed out” on mandatory parole in 1989

The 1 count I pleaded guilty to was 18 USC Section 876. Later I filed a pro se motion to withdraw guilty plea pursuant to 28 USC Section 2255 and Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure 32 (d). The federal defender was not authorized to assist me after probation violation & was ineffective anyway. This was denied through the US Supreme Court. My petitions for parole were all denied.

The crime with which he was charged, 18 USC 876, deals with threatening communications through the United States Mail. Here is the law, so you can read it for yourself:

Mailing threatening communications

(a) Whoever knowingly deposits in any post office or authorized
depository for mail matter, to be sent or delivered by the Postal
Service or knowingly causes to be delivered by the Postal Service
according to the direction thereon, any communication, with or
without a name or designating mark subscribed thereto, addressed to
any other person, and containing any demand or request for ransom
or reward for the release of any kidnapped person, shall be fined
under this title or imprisoned not more than twenty years, or both.

(b) Whoever, with intent to extort from any person any money or
other thing of value, so deposits, or causes to be delivered, as
aforesaid, any communication containing any threat to kidnap any
person or any threat to injure the person of the addressee or of
another, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more
than twenty years, or both.

(c) Whoever knowingly so deposits or causes to be delivered as
aforesaid, any communication with or without a name or designating
mark subscribed thereto, addressed to any other person and
containing any threat to kidnap any person or any threat to injure
the person of the addressee or of another, shall be fined under
this title or imprisoned not more than five years, or both. If such
a communication is addressed to a United States judge, a Federal
law enforcement officer, or an official who is covered by section
1114, the individual shall be fined under this title, imprisoned
not more than 10 years, or both.

(d) Whoever, with intent to extort from any person any money or
other thing of value, knowingly so deposits or causes to be
delivered, as aforesaid, any communication, with or without a name
or designating mark subscribed thereto, addressed to any other
person and containing any threat to injure the property or
reputation of the addressee or of another, or the reputation of a
deceased person, or any threat to accuse the addressee or any other
person of a crime, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned
not more than two years, or both. If such a communication is
addressed to a United States judge, a Federal law enforcement
officer, or an official who is covered by section 1114, the
individual shall be fined under this title, imprisoned not more
than 10 years, or both.

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