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Archive for the ‘Survey Says’ Category

Nothing to add to what’s been said about this by others.

Just my attempt to get a threadjacking off IPR and bring it to where it is on subject. That is, here.

If you have thoughts on the question, whether you find this from IPR or elsewhere, please add them in the comments.

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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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I have to talk to hundreds of people like this every single day.

(Originally posted on my blog and in the
Libertarian Survey comments
which are still going strong even though it’s on page two now).

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First, the American people – or, at the very least Florida SOS Katherine Harris and 5 of 9 Supremely Kangaroo Kort “justices” ruling in a case over which they had zero jurisdiction (2000) and Ken Blackwell (2004) – picked a friggin’ Chimpanzee as POTUS. Twice.

poodle-chimp-sm.jpg

Now, it turns out that one of the leading contenders for the NSGOP nomination may very well in fact be a reanimated corpse who feeds by draining and consuming the blood of living beings. Holy shit – what are the odds on that?

Ghouliani or Nosferatu? We report, you decide…

source:

Prose Before Hos

rudyorvampire2.jpg

rudyorvampire3.jpg

This is really scary…we must take all due diligence to keep this unclean, living undead, blood-sucking creature out of the white house, or else face even more international shame – and who would have thought it possible, after Clinton and Bush? – for our presidential selection.

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Presidential SealAll you have to do is answer 25 questions.

Admittedly the site could be improved, since it lists no LP candidates except Kent McManigal (who’s no longer even running except as a write-in candidate) and references a lot of organizations that I’ve never even heard of (but they expect me to say whether I agree with their platform).

It would be a lot more accurate if, for example, you were given a choice to state you believe the war should be ended immediately. As it is, the only options are setting or not setting a deadline for returning the troops, or neither (and that could mean anything).

That being said, the results still appear to be fairly accurate, since Ron Paul came up as #1, followed by a Democrat (I used to be a Democrat, so that sounds about right even though I’m not familiar with the candidate).  Kent McManigal tied for #3, while the vast majority of Republicans are at the end.  Honestly, I’m not familiar with all the candidates listed, and the lack of specificity with regard to issues such as war could have thrown it way off.  I suspect that, with more specific answer options, the results may be quite different.

It is very strange that Kent McManigal and two Democrats tied for third place, though. LOL

The following is my full ideal candidate list according to that site, based on percentage of agreement and level of importance on the issues:

Ron Paul 72%

Dennis Kucinich 62%

Al Gore 60%

Barack Obama 60%

Kent McManigal 60%

Christopher Dodd 58%

Wesley Clark 53%

Mike Gavel 52%

John Edwards 51%

John McCain 49%

Hillary Clinton 47%

Bill Richardson 47%

Joseph Biden 47%

Alan Auguston 46%

Newt Gingrich 45%

Tommy Thompson 43%

Tom Tancredo 37%

Chuck Hagel 36%

Fred Thompson 36%

Sam Brownback 36%

Mitt Romney 36%

Duncan Hunter 34%

Rudolph Giuliani 34%

Jim Gilmore 29%

Elaine Brown 20%

Mike Huckabee 18%

I’d be interested to know how accurate others believe their results to be, and it might be interesting to take them up on their offer to provide free code for our own candidate survey. I bet it would be a lot more accurate, at any rate.
Hat tip Kent McManigal

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