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Posted at IPR. See comments/discussion there.



From: Robert Kraus
Subject: LPHQ Attendance at Left of Center Conferences

All:

Please feel free to share this email.

We have been asked by several LP Members to look at “left of center” or “alternative” conferences in the DC area which we could attend to counter the image that we only attend CPAC like events (8,500 attendees).

We have assigned several interns to review the more than 700 such conferences and conventions in the Mid-Atlantic area to determine what might be best for us to attend.

The list includes:

· Powershift 2010 (Powershift 2009 had over 10,000 attendees)

· ACLU Membership Conference (over 5,000 attendees)

· Netroots 2009 (over 2,000 attendees)

· America’s Future Now (formerly Take Back America which had a little under 2,000 attendees)

· National Young Women’s Leadership Conference (500-1000 attendees)

We estimate the cost of attending one of these events at $1500-2500 including booth and materials. We are looking for sponsors who will at least pay for the booth or arrange for a free booth. Obviously the better attended events, which in turn draw more media attention, would be our preferred option.

We are currently scheduled to attend these two “alternative” events (which we already have a sponsor for):

· Capital Pride in DC (200,000 attendees)

· Equality Forum 2009 in Philadelphia (75,000 attendees)

We encourage our regional reps to ask their state chairs to also look at events other than the typical gun show or “CPAC” type conventions as well. The office is here to support them in promoting their event to our email and media lists, on our events page, and enlisting volunteer support. Please remind your states to let us know about their events by simply sending an email to events@lp.org and to email Austin at Austin.petersen@lp.org if they need assistance in staffing their booths.

Thank you!

Robert

Robert S. Kraus

Acting Executive Director

Operations@LP.org

Libertarian National Committee

2600 Virginia Ave NW #200

Washington, DC 20037

Ph: 202.333.0008 x 231

Fx: 703.935.8015

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bill-clinton-in-esquire1

In a move that few, if any, people saw coming, former US President William J. Clinton is set to announce today that he is joining the Libertarian Party. Clinton first hinted at his new political direction back in 1997, but Libertarians didn’t believe him, and not long afterwards called for his impeachment.

“What really did it for me this time was the recent “Monday message” from LP communications director Donny Ferguson that said winning is the most important principle,” President Clinton told IPR’s Paulie over a few lines of coke in a Bessemer, Alabama truck stop restroom. “That’s been my view for many years, and I’m glad to finally find a political party with the balls to say it openly.”

Clinton acknowledged that people may be skeptical of his conversion, but he pointed out “look at my old nemesis Bob Barr. Back in 2002 y’all were working to get him out of Congress. By 2006 he was on your national committee, and two years later he’s your Presidential candidate. If Ol’ Bob can do it, why can’t I?” He also pointed out that former Democratic US Senator Mike Gravel switched from running for the Democratic Party Presidential nomination to that of the Libertarian Party just last year while remaining consistent in his views.

Bill mentioned that he is working on getting his wife Hillary to switch as well, pointing out that she was a Goldwater girl in 1964, and that her best bet to beat Obama in 2012 will be in the general election rather than in the primaries. He also sent a shout out to Alan Greenspan for introducing him to the works of Ayn Rand.

Asked about his future political plans, Clinton told Paulie that he was considering running for LNC as well as a future run for US Congress, and will be starting a new civil rights organization to repeal the 22nd Amendment to the US Constitution. “I was hoping to be appointed Ambassador to the UN, but Obama’s being a total dick about it,” he said. “Just because I was the real first black President doesn’t mean he has to be that way.”

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The poll is at

http://www.lp.org/poll/should-more-troops-be-sent-to-afghanistan.

The LNC resolution which “calls on the government of the United States to withdraw the armed forces of the United States from Afghanistan, without undue delay”, is at http://www.lp.org/news/press-releases/lnc-passes-afghanistan-resolution:

At the September meeting of the Libertarian National Committee, the following resolution was passed:

WHEREAS the government of the United States should return to its historical libertarian tradition of avoiding entangling alliances, foreign quarrels, and military adventures; and

WHEREAS the stability and security of Afghanistan lie outside the jurisdiction of the government of the United States; and

WHEREAS the Libertarian Party recognizes that the only legitimate role of the military is to defend America against direct attack or the imminent threat of attack;

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Libertarian National Committee calls on the government of the United States to withdraw the armed forces of the United States from Afghanistan, without undue delay.

At LewRockwell.com blog, Eric Garris writes:

Today the Libertarian Party national website, LP.org, has posted a poll on their front page:

Should more troops be sent to Afghanistan?
Yes
Maybe
No

The correct libertarian position is, of course, withdraw US troops from Afghanistan. This is not an option on the poll. Someone who holds the correct libertarian position must be satisfied with voting “no,” along with those who want to “stay the course” in Afghanistan.

Does this mean we can expect coming LP polls like this:

Should income taxes be increased?

Should penalties against marijuana users be increased?

If you are an LP member, you might want to tell the national office and the national national committee members (two totally separate entities) how you feel about this:

http://www.lp.org/contact-us

http://www.lp.org/leadership

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I’ve told bits and pieces of this story in response to comments on various threads in various places. Having done so over and over, I feel the need to go ahead and put it all out there now so that everyone has one place to turn to for my perspective as state chair. I’m going to go over this first in timeline format, then share a few additional facts about WV and the ballot access situation for us and other parties. If something in the timeline is a bit confusing, see the facts section for clarification.

December 2007: Bill Redpath approaches then-chair Kirsten Milligan about assisting WV with national party funds for ballot access. I was secretary of the party at that time. Kirsten discussed it with the executive committee, and the concensus we reached was that since we did not have a gubernatorial candidate for 2008, national party funds would be better spent elsewhere, and that we would pursue ballot access in 2012 when we had a gubernatorial candidate so that we could achieve major party status and never have to petition again.

March 2008: Kirsten Milligan resigns, and I become interim chairman.

April 2008: Russ Verney contacts me about the possibility of the Barr campaign going for ballot access in WV if Barr wins the nomination. He seems enthusiastic, and I am as well. Mr. Verney comes across very well, and I’m genuinely looking forward to working with him on this together at that point.

May 2008: I’m elected chairman for a full term. Tad Britch is elected to replace me as secretary.

May 2008: Several Barr campaign folks speak to me about the possibility of ballot access in WV while I’m in Denver as a delegate, both before and after Barr receives the nomination. Shane Corey and Russ Verney are among them. I ask them to keep in touch moving forward, and state that I’d love to bring out whatever volunteers the state party has available, but that we have very little in the way of funds, and not enough to really pay for petitioners. I state that we would like some training for our volunteers who primarily reside in the north-central area of WV. This is the last time I would be in contact with any Barr campaign staff, however. I mention to Paulie and others that I’d like to have them come petition and party with me in WV if the Barr campaign sends some funds to the state party for ballot access.

June 2008: Towards the very end of June, Jake Witmer contacts me, and says they are petitioning. I mention that I’d like to get some volunteers trained from the state party’s volunteer base. Jake states that he is in Charleston (a few hours south of the north-central area, where we have very few activists and likely no volunteers.) Jake tells me Shane Corey is coming to the Charleston area, and that he’ll be contacting me. I ask if any petitioners are active in northern WV. Jake doesn’t know. Jake sends me some documents including petitions.

July 2008: I’m still in contact with Jake every once in a while. I offer to house petitioners in my home since Morgantown/Fairmont/Clarksburg/Bridgeport is a good area for petitioning. He says he has a friend who might take me up on it if his friend is brought in by the Barr campaign. That never occurs. I also mention that several other members of the state party would likely volunteer couch space or an air-bed. Later on, Jake gives me contact info for Shane who is apparently in Charleston. I am never able to get in contact with Shane, and he never attempts to contact me.

August 2008: The Barr campaign fails to meet its deadlines. Our state party volunteer base was never utilized. Barr also fails to register as a certified write-in candidate, so that write-in votes for Barr would be counted.

September 2008: A state party member calls me, asking about the Barr lawsuit. This is the first I’d heard of it.

Now for some facts. Ballot access is a 2% theshhold of prior-election voters in WV. To achieve major party status (which means you get free ballot access without petitioning) you must have a gubernatorial candidate who receives 1% of the popular vote. After the national convention, the only person who I was ever in contact with regarding the ballot access efforts was Jake Witmer. Jake was not equipped to really do what needed to be done, as a petitioner and not someone with any real authority. In the future, ballot access efforts will be undertaken by the LPWV. I firmly believe this will better serve the interests of LP candidates throughout the state as we move forward.  The Constitution Party achieved ballot access by petition in 2008 for their presidential candidate, as did Ralph Nader as an independent.  The Green Party affiliate, which is called the Mountain Party, had major party status and did not need to petition.

- Matt Harris, LPWV Chair

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I’ve returned from the great adventure I call “LP-SPAN” and here are my thoughts on the technical side of the issue. It is my hope that we can take this and build on it to make the next round of LNC insanity even better in terms of the broadcast quality. All suggestions are definitely appreciated. This is most definitely a work in progress.

The equipment:

I was using a Microsoft LifeCam either attached to a clip on the top of my laptop or on its independent pole. The camera allows pan and zoom IF you use the Microsoft software. However, the Justin.tv feed doesn’t allow that. No idea if Ustream does. I also had trouble with lighting issues in the room, especially the projector screen glare.

For future, I’d recommend a real videocam on a tripod, which should be able to create a better view and video quality. Personal experience suggests a bird-watching scope tripod over a camera tripod for lightness and ease of use. Plus mine has super-high elevation so it could pan over the crowd. Background lighting

The laptop was sitting on a tray table I had brought along since the room didn’t have any tables except for catering or the meeting table. It caused shaking of the cam at times when I tweeted, and the hunchover caused havoc on my back over time. I was hurting badly until Rachel gave me a much-needed back rub. “Bitchin’!” J

I’d recommend not having the camera attached to the laptop or at least set up in a way that it doesn’t shake. That and having a good setup so the laptop is the proper height to the user.

I’d also recommend a good omnidirectional microphone set up where everything can be caught well. The mic built into the webcam also caught my comments and occasional whispers, and a lot of extra noise. At SD the board table was in a cube with an open center, and the mic in there would have been best. I didn’t have that and it would have been a big help.

The testing:

I made sure that I understood how it all tied together and I did some test runs at home to make sure. That made a big difference come show time. However, the differences between my den and the meeting room were vast. I’d recommend testing in the meeting room if at all possible, because of the acoustics and lighting.

I tried the Justin.tv feed with the laptop’s webcam, then the external one recording, then with outside people and trying to embed.

Embedding the live feed was also a challenge. I had Todd Barnett on the phone helping to troubleshoot on his end. It helps to have someone on the receiving end to evaluate the reception. Ditto during the meeting. The justin.tv feed had a chat room built into each feed window, and that made getting the feedback easy, which came in handy when the connection got bad. Justin.tv does NOT work with WordPress well, unless Todd and I just missed something, which is certainly possible. I got it to embed at blogger/blogspot just fine. Other embedding notes are appreciated.

We also encountered a horrible screeching when we were testing, until we figured out that it was caused by the laptop speakers output being picked up by the webcam mic and creating a nasty feedback loop. The solution was to mute the speakers. Wear headphones when adjusting the microphone volume.

The Feed:

First, I was on the hotel’s wireless connection, which at times was very slow. The more people that were logged into the network, the slower it got. If you can, use a wired connection to ensure the connection rate stays consistent.

Second, it is extremely important to have someone on the other end provide feedback on the reception. On my end, the display on the popout window was far different than the one in the main window. Here the chat box was invaluable, and I was lucky to have multiple people giving me feedback.

Third, Justin.tv gave me the option to record as we broadcast. Do it. It saves off the pieces online for later download. I’d suggest stopping and restarting the recording at various spots to break it up into manageable segments instead of one long one. I always made sure to check the bandwidth between recordings because of the wireless, but I don’t think that may be necessary on a wired connection.

The twitter:

It’s a great tool to do this live. Yes, the 140 character limit can be an issue at times. I’d recommend two tweets, both in the gallery rather than on the board, who should focus on what is going on anyway. Plus, it removes any issue about “decorum” or “executive session”, but the tweets should be as neutral as possible. The advantage of two is that one can pick up what the other missed, which is an area I had trouble with at times. I’d also suggest that if you can’t get on a wired connection, then see if the tweet can be done on a Blackberry. The wireless connection problems that plagued the feed connection also slowed down the tweets. It may be advisable to have whomever is tweeting be different from the camera operations.

All in all, my rig was a little crude, but it was something. I don’t see this as too difficult, just taking a little getting used to. If you test beforehand and practice, it goes better.

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So a few of us – namely Paulie, George Donnelly, Mike Seebeck, and myself, along with a few others who have expressed an interest, have been talking a lot about forming an LP Transparency Caucus.  At this point, we’re sure that we’re moving forward with this, so we thought it a good time to start soliciting thoughts and ideas from the community at large instead of just talking amongst ourselves.  We’ve got the internet site stuff set up, and just needs some design/content/etc – anyone interested in helping out, please let us know.

Here’s what we’re thinking so far: The LP Transparency Caucus is completely non-partisan in terms of reformers, radicals, etc.  All we do is try to bring greater openness to the LP.  This includes everything from the LNC (we plan to push for live video from every LNC meeting from now on) to bylaws and platform committees, etc.  We will be putting out reports or pushing to have reports put out in as timely a manner as possible.  We want as much information as feasible to be available to the entirety of the LP membership without in any way compromising the goals of the LP.  Certain things are supposed to be public – and we’ll always be lobbying to make sure they are.

Beyond that, we’ll be sending candidates for internal positions such as the LNC and various committees surveys.  We will publish the results of these surveys, as well as endorse the best candidates.  Once elected, we will help to ensure that these candidates comply with the campaign promises made in terms of transparency and a culture of openness within the given committee.  We believe that this will foster such a culture by encouraging candidates to take up pro-transparency positions as well as stick to them once in office.

So have at it – what other ideas and suggestions do you folks have?  What else can be done?  Keep in mind that bonus points are awarded for doers, not for talkers.  Over the coming months and years, we’ll be putting our boots on the ground to try and achieve the goals we’re working on here.  If you want to help by doing stuff, don’t hesitate to say so!  All are welcome, and we hope you’ll find this idea worthwhile.

Thanks, Matt

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Copied from IPR:

This resolution is going to be brought up at the upcoming LNC meeting in Sandy Eggo, Saturday, December 6 and Sunday, December 7, 2008.  Here’s some more info on that, including the agenda, courtesy of Rachel Hawkridge. The charges are being presented by Stewart Flood, and a summary is attached. Supporting evidence is expected to be made available later in the week.

Resolution of Discipline

Whereas, Angela Keaton has engaged in conduct injurious to the Libertarian Party and
its purposes; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That Angela Keaton’s membership in the Libertarian National Committee is
suspended pursuant to Article 8, Section 5 of the Bylaws of the Libertarian Party; and
further be it

RESOLVED, That the aforementioned suspension is hereby rescinded, contingent upon
a determination by the Secretary that Angela Keaton has submitted within seven days of
the adoption of this resolution a letter for publication in LP News including (and limited
to):

· An apology for being in breach of a board member’s fiduciary duty of loyalty to
the Libertarian Party, publicly declaring her disinterest in the party, providing
material support to another political party and seeking to undermine the success
of and attempting to injure the Libertarian Party and its public image. The
contents of the apology to include the following:

o An apology to the members of the Libertarian Party for seeking to undermine the success of and attempting to injure the Libertarian Party
and its public image by posting on her blog in July 2008, “Friends don’t let friends join the LP” and on September 5, 2008, “The LP is hopeless”

o An apology to the members of the Libertarian Party for violating the fiduciary duty of a board member by joining and providing material
support to a competing political party while serving on the board of the Libertarian Party

o An apology to the members of the Libertarian Party of New Hampshire for attempting on August 21, 2008 to sabotage the party’s attempt to win the right to candidate substitution for future elections

o An apology to Wayne Allyn Root and the Libertarian Party for attempting to injure their public images by knowingly publishing on June 13, 2008 false assertions that an indictment on charges of fraud was pending against Mr. Root

o An apology to the members of the Libertarian Party for publicly offering on her blog on June 28, 2008, sexual services in exchange for donations to the Party, and suggesting in Internet interviews on June 20, 2008 and
June 26, 2008 that the Libertarian Party asks her to offer sexual services in exchange for donations to the Party

o An apology to the members of the Libertarian National Committee and to the members of the Libertarian Party for numerous blog posts and
Internet interviews with officers of a competing political party in which the Libertarian Party’s image was harmed with broad-sweeping general
hostility towards the LP, numerous broad insults of her fellow LNC members as being inept, unqualified and not “real” libertarians, and impugning the motives of fellow LNC members for serving on the LNC

o An apology to Bill Redpath for repeatedly asserting in an Internet interview and on blog postings that he has undergone a “lobotomy”

o An apology to Admiral Colley for asserting in an Internet interview on June 20, 2008 that due to his age he is incapable of handling special LNC
projects involving staff management

o An apology to Bob Sullentrup for calling him an “ass” and a “goofball whose activism days were long behind him” in an Internet interview on June 20, 2008

o An apology to Dan Karlan for saying in an Internet interview on June 26, 2008 that he isn’t qualified to be on the LNC

o An apology to the members of the Libertarian Party for asserting in an Internet interview on June 26, 2008, that most LP members who are
concerned about border security are racists

o An apology to the members of the Libertarian Party for misusing donor data to contact major LP donors and falsely telling them that the
Libertarian Party had defrauded them

· An apology for exhibiting a pattern of reckless behavior and poor judgment, potentially exposing the LP to harassment lawsuits, creating an uncomfortable environment for staff and fellow LNC members, and potentially discouraging groups of people from joining the LP. The contents of the apology to include the
following:

o An apology to LP staff member Casey Hansen for violating the LNC Policy Manual Article 1, Section 8.D and risking sexual harassment
accusations by blogging on September 6, 2008, “Nice staff piece of ass, Casey. Dark, young and easy prey for a cougar like myself.”

o An apology to Aaron Starr and the Libertarian National Committee for violating LNC Policy Manual, Article 1, Section 8.D (which prohibits
harassment of LP staff or fellow LNC members with racial epithets and derogatory posters, pictures, cartoons, or drawings) by posting on her blog on June 16, 2008 a photo-shopped image of herself and Mr. Starr portraying him in Darth Vader costume and Hitler moustache and
identifying him as “Darth Herr Vader”

o An apology to the Libertarian National Committee for violating LNC Policy Manual, Article 1, Section 8.D and risking sexual harassment accusations by posting on her blog on September 6, 2008 sexual comments regarding Julie Fox, Heather Scott, Executive Director candidate Donny Ferguson, and Admiral Colley

o An apology to Southerners and Christians for violating LNC Policy Manual Article 1 Section 8.A which states, “All collective deprecation, whether alluding to sex, race, color, national origin, disability, age, religion, or any other protected category, must be avoided. Every person is a unique individual, and as the Libertarian Party is the Party of Individual Liberty, this injunction should doubly apply”, for posting on her blog on June 13, 2008 referring to an LP member from the South as a “hillbilly” and further stating, “All those Christian types married to their uncle cousins look the same to me.”

o An apology to the Libertarian National Committee for offering sex to the LNC officers conditional on the performance of our Presidential candidate by stating in an Internet interview on June 26, 2008, “If Bob Barr breaks
1%, the officers of the national party can pass me around like a pu-pu platter.”

· An apology to the Libertarian Party for violating the confidentiality of the September 7, 2008 Executive Session with a blog post on the same date and also for violating the confidentiality of a February 2008 Executive Session with a blog post on June 15, 2008

· An apology to Stewart Flood for threatening by phone on November 6, 2008, “I could have things done to you.”

· A promise not to commit similar offenses in the future while serving as a member of the Libertarian National Committee

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