Biden

Saturday, August 23rd, 2008

Had to take a break from my vacation to register my disappointment in Obama’s selection of Biden.

I understand the rationale–Obama wants an attack dog to go after McCain while he appears to be above the fray. Biden also adds some foreign policy and Beltway heft to the ticket. The Beltway CW says this pick was safe, but not particularly bold. I think that’s about right.

But from a policy perspective, it’s a disaster. Biden has sponsored more damaging drug war legislation than any Democrat in Congress. Hate the way federal prosecutors use RICO laws to take aim at drug offenders? Thank Biden. How about the abomination that is federal asset forfeiture laws? Thank Biden. Think federal prosecutors have too much power in drug cases? Thank Biden. Think the title of a “Drug Czar” is sanctimonious and silly? Thank Biden, who helped create the position (and still considers it an accomplishment worth boasting about). Tired of the ridiculous steroids hearings in Congress? Thank Biden, who led the effort to make steroids a Schedule 3 drug, and has been among the blowhardiest of the blowhards when it comes to sports and performance enhancing drugs. Biden voted in favor of using international development aid for drug control (think plan Columbia, plan Afghanistan, and other meddling anti-drug efforts that have only fostered loathing of America, backlash, and unintended consequences). Oh, and he was also the chief sponsor of 2004’s horrendous RAVE Act.

Biden does appear to have eased up a bit in the last couple years, including taking a fairly strong position against federal raids on medical marijuana clinics (though he still opposes making marijuana available for medicinal purposes). But that’s little consolation for all the damage he’s done over the years.

Biden’s record on other criminal justice and civil liberties issues is just as bad. Opponents of the federalization of crime might note that the 1994 crime bill he sponsored created several new federal capital offenses. Biden also wants to expand federal penalties for hate crimes. He supports a federal smoking ban. His position on the federal drinking age is, and I quote, “absolutely do not” lower it to 18. He believes “most violent crime is related to drugs” (if he had said “drug prohibition,” he’d be closer to the truth). Biden also has an almost perfect anti-gun voting record. He said last year he favors “universal national service,” either in the Peace Corps or the military. Sounds like conscription to me. He says he’s opposed to the PATRIOT Act, but he voted for both the original bill and its re-authorization in 2005.

Foreign policy? Biden voted for the war on Iraq. Yes, he’s opposed to it now (and I like the partition plan he pushed in the primaries). But he didn’t vote correctly when it counted most. Biden also voted to send troops into Darfur. He wants to enlarge NATO. He voted in favor of the air strikes in Kosovo. He voted to strengthen the trade embargo against Cuba. His seems to be a meddling, interventionist, Clinton-esque foreign policy. His first instinct seems to be that the U.S. military’s objective include some vague notion of “doing good in the world.” Never mind the disastrous consequences that notion has reaped over the years.

I obviously disagree with Biden on a host of economic and regulatory issues, too (though he does seem to be fairly decent on free trade). But that’s to be expected. My problem with Biden is that he’s not even good on the issues the left is supposed to be good on. He’s an overly ambitious, elitist, tunnel-visioned, Potomac-fevered Beltway dinosaur, with all the trappings. He may well have been the worst possible pick among congressional Democrats when it comes to the drug war and criminal justice.

Your humble Agitator predicted the Biden pick last February. It was a prediction made mostly from cynicism. I wish I had been wrong.

On principle, Obama stumbles badly, here. I guess we’ll have to wait to see how it plays out on the electoral map.

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126 Responses to “Biden”

  1. #1 |  Li | 

    Yeah, not too happy about this choice either. . .

  2. #2 |  Mike | 

    On the other hand, Radley, if Biden is elected Veep, this gets him out of the Senate, where he has real power.

  3. #3 |  FP | 

    You forgot his sponsorship of VAWA (sexist by its very name) and its sibling IMBRA.

  4. #4 |  Say It Ain’t Joe! (So.) § Unqualified Offerings | 

    […] AOTP, I discover Biden has an 82% rating from the ACLU. But Radley Balko suggests the ACLU are easy graders: But from a policy perspective, it’s a disaster. Biden has sponsored more damaging drug war […]

  5. #5 |  sqlcowboy | 

    He also supported DOMA and the federal ant-gay marriage amendment. But like Mike said, it’d get him out of a position where he has any real power.

    Although I think the only reason he’d want the VP job is to run for president in 8 years. Or maybe he’s hoping for an assassination.

  6. #6 |  Billy Beck | 

    “On principle, Obama stumbles badly, here.”

    You know what, Radley? I think you do good work here at the blog, but you’re never ever in your life going to enjoy my respect. Never. Now, that might not matter to you, but it’s important to me.

    I have a question which might illustrate for you what I’m talking about:

    What the fuck did you — do you — expect from these assholes?

    I once told you in e-mail that your problem is Washington D.C.

    If you had a brain in your head, you would move someplace half-civilized.

  7. #7 |  Billy Beck | 

    {hah!} I expect every single one of you to vote that comment down. I should have said that when I wrote it.

    You might think about this, though: you people are the only ones who could possibly disappoint me. I don’t have a thing in the world invested in these various shit-heel creeps that all of you are going to vote for. I only wish that you people were better than you are.

    And still: I will never submit your rights to a vote.

    I’m not like you.

  8. #8 |  claude | 

    “I’m not like you.”

    Thankyou.

  9. #9 |  Honeyko | 

    This is going to be a Nixon-McGovern landslide for McCain.

    Obama would have been better off selecting the corpse of Che Guevara for veep — at least that would hold his base together.

    Ed Driscoll is all over it.

  10. #10 |  Les | 

    I think you do good work here at the blog, but you’re never ever in your life going to enjoy my respect.

    As if Billy’s respect is something someone could “enjoy.” Hilarious!

  11. #11 |  Billy Beck | 

    That’s nice, Claude. Very snippy. A guaranteed laugh around the bar.

    I do not believe that, if you really thought about it all, you could do no better than that.

  12. #12 |  D | 

    Agreed, but how can one evaluate the tradeoff between electable evil and someone who is less well known/electable but supports sounder policy?

  13. #13 |  mgordon | 

    A guaranteed laugh around the bar.

    That explains a lot.

  14. #14 |  Mike T | 

    In other words, Biden is a pure, unadulterated Fascist, and proves that Obama is probably one too.

  15. #15 |  Drew H | 

    The ONLY candidate that had the balls to stop the drug war was Ron Paul.

  16. #16 |  j.d. | 

    Biden, a fascist? That’s the republicants.

    The choice is between fascism and socialism.

  17. #17 |  Andy Craig | 

    “if Biden is elected Veep, this gets him out of the Senate”

    You might want to think about that again.

  18. #18 |  Danno49 | 

    As much as I am against Obama and his policies, I was kind of looking forward to someone with a different approach in the White House this go around. With the announcement of Kinnock – errr, Biden, it looks like more of the same headed our way. That said, if I were one to participate in the illusion of choice, I would vote for Obama/Biden over McCain/?? simply because I think (hope, mostly) Obama will do his best to get us the fuck out of Iraq. McCain will let us linger there and continue losing our fine young men and women over a petty tyrant’s gamble for the foreseeable future.

    The way I figure it, if Obama wins and if he brings the troops home and does very little else, he is leaps and bounds ahead of George W. Douche as a president. Hell, Warren G. Harding was leaps and bounds ahead of Bush but I digress . . .

  19. #19 |  Jonathan Hohensee | 

    The ONLY candidate that had the balls to stop the drug war was Ron Paul.
    GOOGLE RON PAUL!

  20. #20 |  Matt Moore | 

    I think we can safely assume that everyone here knows who Ron Paul is.

  21. #21 |  Tokin42 | 

    Policy aside, it was also a bad pick tactically. Kaine and Bayh are stiffs, but at least Obama would have been guaranteed a win in Indiana or Virginia. he’s going to have to keep everything Kerry won plus pick up a couple of states to win this and picking Biden didn’t do anything to increase his odds anywhere that matters.

  22. #22 |  b-hussain change | 

    so why didn’t b.h.o. pick a ‘black’ veep?
    he left us homeys that supported him all these years in the dust…
    for a lily-white power cartel of which biden is the epitome.
    the only change we need is to go from ‘unca tom’ to ‘unca bo’,
    we been ‘shafted’ once again, rip isaac.

  23. #23 |  Alex | 

    You all should go to Billy Beck’s website and look at his picture. If he wasn’t such a narcissistic dick, I’d never point it out, but that is one fugly ass SOB.

    Also, Jim Webb seemed like the most obvious VP pick of my lifetime. Unless he refused, I can’t imagine think of one advantage Biden has.

  24. #24 |  j.d. | 

    Bayh would have been a good pick because he was a governor, but every democrat I’ve met while living in the hoosier state have bad words for Bayh. And I worked in the state government there, so I met quite a few dems. I think your analysis is plausible, but the conclusion improbable. no way he could deliver anything but a few extra votes.

    I thought Webb would have been Obama’s best pick, followed by Biden.

    If Hilary’s followers throw this election to McCain and we get another 8 years of Bush II, there’s going to be a bloodbath in that party.

  25. #25 |  More of the Same « Upturned Earth || John Schwenkler | 

    […] and Biden are surely the better of these two options does not count for much: as Radley Balko has put it in connection with the latter’s history of drug-warring, these are the issues that the Left […]

  26. #26 |  James D | 

    The early reports were Bayh and I thought he would have been the best pick for the big O. I guess Obama wanted someone else who had (almost) as much of a God-complex and was as gaffe-prone as him instead. Watch the polls just get better for McCain. Then again if McCain makes an equally stupid pick like Romney … who knows.

  27. #27 |  Honeyko | 

    Ad hominem Alex: You all should go to Billy Beck’s website and look at his picture. If he wasn’t such a narcissistic dick, I’d never point it out, but that is one fugly ass SOB.

    Here’s the link.

    Now let’s see a link to your no doubt Zeppish physique, Alex.

    (I mean, if we’re evading, with concerted purpose, principled thought and all that other horrible stuff that adults do.)

  28. #28 |  KBCraig | 

    Curiously, there’s been no mention so far of the fact that Biden being a good or bad pick, depends on whether you want Obama to win, or not.

    I’m conflicted, since I want Obama and McCain to lose.

    Now the burden is on McCain to pick someone less horrendous than Biden.

  29. #29 |  Ted | 

    Obama/Biden leaves a hole wide nuff for a Mack Truck but only with Sarah Palin as the driver!

  30. #30 |  mark | 

    biden wont lose his power in the senate as vp he will actually then preside over it and have the tie breaking vote. Silly Internet.

  31. #31 |  Alex | 

    “Ad hominem Alex”

    What is ad hominem? The only way that makes sense is if I made an arguement, which I didn’t. I noticed that douchebag’s website a long time ago but just never mentioned it. I saw these comments and couldn’t help myself. What of it?

    “Now let’s see a link to your no doubt Zeppish physique, Alex.”

    I would rather comment honestly and anonymously, but I’ve been told I look like an uglier John Mayer and a white Ludachris. I’m not really sure who either of those two are, but I’ve heard each at least a few times. I don’t see how it really matters anyway because Billy Beck looks like a guy in a van parked next to a playground, and I assume all the other commenters look much less fugly/creepy than that.

    Take this quote from Billy: “I don’t have a thing in the world invested in these various shit-heel creeps that all of you are going to vote for. I only wish that you people were better than you are.”

    Why would you spend 1 second defending this asshole? Also, I assume you haven’t read any of his comments or his website. You should because he reads like a retarded WFB. In connection with his picture, it’s quite hilarious.

  32. #32 |  Biden my time Sunday morning « The Quick and the Dead | 

    […] my time Sunday morning Balko pops in from vacation to point out Joe’s horrific record on drugs and civil liberties. He ends with […]

  33. #33 |  Jeffrey Quick | 

    “On principle, Obama stumbles badly, here.”
    Is it really possible to use “principle” and “Obama” in the same sentence? Or for that matter “principle” and “Balko’s guest bloggers”? Nice to have you back, even if (or because) you’re the guy enumerating the coliform count of the turd in the punchbowl (Biden) while everyone else is just laughing about it.

  34. #34 |  About Joe Biden - Page 2 - MajorWager Forums | 

    […] can express it better than Balko! The Agitator

  35. #35 |  Les | 

    Or for that matter “principle” and “Balko’s guest bloggers”?

    So, what, exactly, have the guest bloggers written to make you conclude that they have no principles?

  36. #36 |  newsrackblog.com » Blog Archive » The Biden pick: could have been worse, I guess | 

    […] Radley Balko (”The Agitator”), libertarian — disappointed, points to Biden’s support for key measures in the “war on drugs,” the Iraq war (initially), for interventionism generally (Kosovo, Darfur), and for expanding the list of death penalty offenses. “He’s an overly ambitious, elitist, tunnel-visioned, Potomac-fevered Beltway dinosaur, with all the trappings. He may well have been the worst possible pick among congressional Democrats when it comes to the drug war and criminal justice.” (Via Jim Henley, who reports that on the other hand, Biden has an 82% ACLU rating.) […]

  37. #37 |  Danno49 | 

    What the fuck does Billy’s appearance have to do with anything? I don’t agree with his comments in this thread so much so should I blast how he looks? When you bring that into your argument against him, you lose some credibility. Come on man, you didn’t need to do that. He crucified himself practically.

  38. #38 |  Alex | 

    “When you bring that into your argument against him, you lose some credibility.”

    What arguement against him? I’m pointing out that he looks really f’d up, and I can feel safe doing that because he’s such a useless asshole. What’s the point of the internet if we can’t make fun of people. Sure his head looks like a skeleton, but he chose the 80’s silk shirt and gold chains. It looks like he also has a bald guy pony tail. If so, this is gold. I go weeks without seeing people that look this pitiful in real life. Like I said, if the guy was mentally challenged, I wouldn’t say anything, but he’s a shit talking dumbass that looks funny as hell.

    Really, what’s the point of the internet if not to look at funny pictures of hillbillies?

  39. #39 |  j.d. | 

    right on alex. he’s just a big doody head.

    your mom.

  40. #40 |  bot | 

    Please elevate the discourse before the comments disappear again.

  41. #41 |  Andrew | 

    Biden is also a seething hatred for the Second Amendment and gun owners in particular. Actually I take that back, gun owners who are federal, state or politically connected or protecting his senatorial ass he’s pretty much cool with. The rest of you he hates and wants to do bad things to you.

    He fits in with Obama quite well in that respect.

  42. #42 |  Ted | 

    Despite the Dems and the allied main stream media’s desperation to see Romney as McCain’s Veep, Mitt is clearly out, with (1) Obama doubling down on the class warfare theme (McCain’s 7 houses) and (2) McCain doubling down with ads showing the hypocrisy of Biden attacking Obama in the primaries — Romney did way more than that contra McCain.

    This leaves only Govs Sarah Palin and Tim Pawlenty. Pro-abortion Ridge and Dem-Lieberman were never real considerations, despite relentless media goading. Pawlenty’s lackluster TV performances, coupled with Palin pizzazz, the primacy of oil drilling and the ticked off women/Hillary voters, does now portend a McCain/Palin checkmate on the Dems. This is so albeit the Dems and liberal media dare not mention Palin’s name, that is, everyone but…..

    And if there’s any question as to Palin being uniquely positioned and able to more than nullify Biden in debate, see the excellent discussion at palinforvp.blogspot.com

    Team McCain, well done!!!

  43. #43 |  xyz123 | 

    seeing the good liberal’s dismay at obama’s bidness-as-usual choice of biden is good for the spirit. it’s a little like stumbling on a 13-year-old girl, crying her brokenhearted eyes out at discovering that her latest crush is a cad just like all the rest.

    “…but i thought he was DIFFerent, daddy! he *SAID* he was different!”

    of course, the difference is that here, it’s ok to point out “WTF did you think was gonna happen? did you REALLY think a hugely arrogant racist lowlife corrupt chicago machine pol was gonna turn out to be a knight in shining armor? have you not been paying attention? or did you maybe just *refuse to think about* the stories of obama winning his first election by removing his challengers from the ballot? etc etc”

    think carter’s grinning marxist incompetence, only without carter’s rudimentary personal morals. *nice* pick there, barry! was robert byrd too busy to be VP? daley didn’t want to take the pay cut? mugabe had scheduling conflicts?

  44. #44 |  Agitator vs. Biden « Beware of Roaming | 

    […] Agitator vs. Biden Radley Balko doesn’t like Biden. […]

  45. #45 |  Billy Beck | 

    “…but that is one fugly ass SOB.”

    Nobody is ever going to get me to compromise your rights, Alex.

  46. #46 |  Billy Beck | 

    Ps. — They’re silver, and I’ve been wearing them longer than you’ve been alive, son. I don’t don’t wear gold, and I never have.

  47. #47 |  Joe Biden: Drug Warrior « ludditerobot | 

    […] and Ohio and Michigan, being an attack dog, etc. etc. –  Radly Balko helpfully points out one ridiculously under-discussed aspect of the choice of Sen. Joe Biden to be Obama’s VP nominee … his illustrious career the […]

  48. #48 |  Petering Time | 

    Out in the big, wide world; Biden doesn’t look anything more than the same old, same old, when it comes to veeps.

  49. #49 |  Tousaw Law » Blog Archive » Biden not a progressive (but then again, neither is Obama) | 

    […] The Agitator » Blog Archive » Biden But from a policy perspective, it’s a disaster. Biden has sponsored more damaging drug war legislation than any Democrat in Congress. Hate the way federal prosecutors use RICO laws to take aim at drug offenders? Thank Biden. How about the abomination that is federal asset forfeiture laws? Thank Biden. Think federal prosecutors have too much power in drug cases? Thank Biden. Think the title of a “Drug Czar” is sanctimonious and silly? Thank Biden, who helped create the position (and still considers it an accomplishment worth boasting about). Tired of the ridiculous steroids hearings in Congress? Thank Biden, who led the effort to make steroids a Schedule 3 drug, and has been among the blowhardiest of the blowhards when it comes to sports and performance enhancing drugs. Biden voted in favor of using international development aid for drug control (think plan Columbia, plan Afghanistan, and other meddling anti-drug efforts that have only fostered loathing of America, backlash, and unintended consequences). Oh, and he was also the chief sponsor of 2004’s horrendous RAVE Act. […]

  50. #50 |  Greg C. | 

    It’s not about what looks good to Balko. It’s about what will help Obama.

    I thing you make too many assumptions about what the Left is supposed to be good on and I doubt that any of these issues matter to Democrats or voters in general.

    Yeah, The Left is supposed to be good on civil liberties. The Right is supposed to be great on spending and small government. But the the supposed to has nothing to do with reality for either.

    The reality is most Democrats are just as bad on civil liberties as Republicans. Most people in general are sheep who buy the whole” drugs are bad..must destroy drug users” and every legislation is acceptable because it’s ” for the children” ideas.

    A large % of people think the things that happened to Cory Maye, Ryan Frederick, Derrick Foster, and everyone else are acceptable, that police are always right, government is good, and “civil liberties don’t matter if you are dead.”

    Voters are overwhelmingly statist and hate America.

  51. #51 |  Matt | 

    “I was kind of looking forward to someone with a different approach in the White House this go around”

    The denizens of the White House all have, have always had, and always will have, the same “approach”: impose themselves upon your life, with or without your consent.

  52. #52 |  Biden Criticism « Wintry Smile | 

    […] August, 2008 · No Comments Radley Balko has some worries about Biden that I hadn’t heard before.  Back when I tended to prefer Edwards, an article about […]

  53. #53 |  Les | 

    did you REALLY think a hugely arrogant racist lowlife corrupt chicago machine pol was gonna turn out to be a knight in shining armor?

    No, but it’s hilarious that you think we did. Thanks for such a thoughtful response!

  54. #54 |  xyz123 | 

    SUper-peppy response there, les! thanks so much for enlightening us! did you have any thoughtful analysis as to how the selection of an obnoxious, arrogant, none-too-bright, racist, mendacious, 35-year senator from a democrat machine state might square with the campaign’s stated policy of hopey change?

    i mean, cause, y’know, selecting biden LOOKS like the act of a cynical, seniority-based, samo samo bidness as usual corrupt chicago politician.

    or is that not thoughtful enough?

  55. #55 |  tadhg.com » Blog Archive » Obama/Biden | 

    […] work, though, I’ll leave you in the capable hands of Jonathan Schwarz, Dennis Perrin, and Radley Balko (who I don’t read regularly, but whose commentary on Biden and the “Drug War” […]

  56. #56 |  Danno49 | 

    The denizens of the White House all have, have always had, and always will have, the same “approach”: impose themselves upon your life, with or without your consent.

    Very true. But one can still be a bit naive about such things and hope for the best from time to time. Can’t they? Hope springs eternal, yes? Ah, never mind. You are correct, of course, good sir. I suppose I’ll just wait for the beginning of next baseball season to employ such thought.

  57. #57 |  Billy Beck | 

    “But one can still be a bit naive about such things and hope for the best from time to time.”

    When you hope against nature of a thing, that’s not “naive”. It’s not remotely charming to even try to cop that. It’s fucking disgusting.

  58. #58 |  B | 

    Radley–great criticism of Biden all around, but clearly the drug war is not an issue in this election. Even the Libertarians have nominated a (somewhat reformed) drug warrior, fer chrissake.

    If one wants to vote their position on the drug war, the only remotely sensible choice is to vote with their feet.

  59. #59 |  Red Green | 

    The more things seem to “CHANGE “,the more they obviously stay the same. Our ship of state…the Titanic. Silly, party voters.

  60. #60 |  Buck | 

    You also predicted McCain would choose Lieberman.

    I so hope you are right on that one too.

  61. #61 |  Dave_D | 

    Kind of blows Obama’s promises of change doesn’t it? Looks like business as usual over at the DNC. I wonder if McCain is smart enough to take advantage of this turn of events?

  62. #62 |  Les | 

    xyz123,

    Your hyperbole diminishes any legitimate message you might have (Carter was a Marxist? Mugabe? Really?) . I don’t know who around here actually thinks Obama is everything he and his supporters say he is. I certainly don’t know of anyone here who thought he was going to be turn out to be “a knight in shining armor.”

    And could you please provide some evidence of his being a racist, thank you.

  63. #63 |  Danno49 | 

    When you hope against nature of a thing, that’s not “naive”. It’s not remotely charming to even try to cop that. It’s fucking disgusting.

    Man, I thought I was cynical. And just so you know, Billy: I wouldn’t let anyone compromise your rights, either. Even when you’re acting like an asshole. Hell, especially because you are. ;)

    I’m disgusted by the way things are, too. I just choose not to act misanthropic and hopeless all the time because my blood pressure can’t handle it. But mostly because I think it’s a pretty shitty way to live; feeling like you’re overly oppressed. Even if you are. I wouldn’t know how to walk with that much weight on my goddamned shoulders.

    Because I would like things to be different doesn’t mean I am not wise to the fact that it is pretty much impossible that they ever will be. I can choose to be pessimistic and live a fairly miserable existence in the process or I can take what they give me and work with it to my advantage.

    In other words, I know things are fucked. But I won’t let that beat me down to the point where I’m so depressed and can fight no longer in word, deed or thought. I’ll fight them with a smile on my face.

    Good day, sir.

  64. #64 |  Billy Beck | 

    What I pointed out is not cynicism. It’s an indictment of delusion.

    And I am never going to be a “happy warrior”. Fuck that bullshit. At its root, it’s a goddamned lie.

  65. #65 |  Danno49 | 

    LOL, dude . . . I doubt I would ever live to see the day with you as a happy warrior. If I did, I’d start wondering if the end of the world were nigh. I’m sorry you seem to have read so much into my little comment regarding naivete. I am not delusional and perhaps I expressed myself improperly and for that I am sure I deserve your ‘indictment’ as it were. However, I do think that you are quite cynical. I know I am. We just express our disappointments quite differently. At the root, we probably have more in common than you may care to admit. There are many times where I have read something you wrote and said, “Yup, he gets it.” Now with your comments to me, I doubt you would say that about much I have written but there it is. Just know I respect most of what you have to say and agree with a good percentage of it . . . so much so that I felt compelled to speak out about the ridiculous comment on your appearance. I know you don’t need my help in defending yourself or even that you needed defending so much as that that annoyed me. I hate it when people pull that crap.

  66. #66 |  Billy Beck | 

    “However, I do think that you are quite cynical.”

    I don’t think that word means what you think it does. A good clue to this would be the second sentence that one of yours. “Disappointment” is a very different thing, even accounting for the full depth and breadth of it in my case. I’ve written this before and you might not have seen it, but it’s a key: I remember America, and I’m going to miss it for the rest of my life.

    “At the root, we probably have more in common than you may care to admit.”

    No, sir. You’re wrong about that. Look: I’ve noticed you here. I know what you’re talking about and agree. Where you’re wrong is in what I would “admit”. Facts are immutable to me.

    I will not give up my dispute of what you said. When I first wrote it, I dropped a word so I’m going to write it again:

    When you hope against the nature of a thing, that’s not “naive”.

    Hope without reason for it is simply delusional. You might as well throw salt over your left shoulder, like the epistemic savages of old, who are now making a thorough comeback. You’re hoping that the tiger won’t eat you, without accounting for what it is, in reality.

    There is nothing “cynical” in this.

  67. #67 |  Billy Beck | 

    Another thought:

    I’m actually pleased that you brought this up, Danno.

    I think I now have a new principle of online operations: my job is to do everything I can to ruthlessly shatter hope without reason.

    When I set up my blog, my very first post (“Weblog Precepts”) announced that I would not be a constructive critic. (The truth: I stole that from H. L. Mencken.)

    I know what I’m doing, and what I’m talking about. I never got into any this in order to make friends, and I don’t care whether anyone likes it or not.

  68. #68 |  Two--Four | 

    […] friends, and I don

  69. #69 |  Danno49 | 

    Not to get into a pissing contest here but I am well aware of what the definition of cynical is. Key there was ‘I think’ you are cynical. Maybe I am wrong. In your mind, I definitely am. In my mind, I read what I read from you and see cynicism. It’s kind of like your summation of my comments using the word disgusting. I hardly believe everyone would agree with you that what I said was disgusting (karma notwithstanding) – it’s all in the eye of the beholder when it comes to that. There are no facts that you have to support what you said seeing as my comment was really put down without a great deal of thought and probably should have been dismissed offhand by anyone reading it. Which is probably good advice for the majority of what I post here, anyway. But you didn’t. You read into it far more than was there and then proceeded to insult me. That’s fine; I’m a big boy and can handle it. I have no control over your perception any more than you have control over mine. If your perception of my comment is ‘it’s disgusting’, then that’s your opinion but not immutable fact.

    The facts are that you don’t know what I was truly trying to convey with the ‘naïve’ comment. Truth be told, it was more of a segue to what I said about baseball immediately. I’ve said this here before . . . only I know what I am talking about a good portion of the time and sometimes my fingers and brain move in unison with little regard for what is being transcribed – disconnect between brain and tongue (in this case, keyboard) to muddle over thought to word the thought does not always exist for me. Now perhaps that does not make me appear too wise or educated or whatever the fuck. I really don’t care. I say what I think I need to at the time and that’s that. I’ll own up (and have) to any realmistakes I make after the fact. The case for true humility demands nothing less.

    As far as the rest is concerned, have it your way.

  70. #70 |  Billy Beck | 

    “…it’s all in the eye of the beholder when it comes to that.”

    True.

    Somewhere in the corpus, Ayn Rand once said that ethics was the most important philosophical study of our time, and you just made that point. The question here is what to value, and my principle is reality.

    “If your perception of my comment is ‘it’s disgusting’, then that’s your opinion but not immutable fact.”

    Well, it is in my case: that’s my ethical response to it. It’s regrettable if you find that insulting, but that’s your affair and there is nothing I can do about it.

  71. #71 |  Billy Beck | 

    Let me draw out an implication:

    “The question here is what to value, and my principle is reality.”

    This brings me back to the top:

    It is the height of folly to invest anything in Obama or McCain, and I say that anyone remotely disappointed in either of them deserves everything they get in the next four years.

    Like I told Jim Henley last night: I’ll see you under the next administration.

  72. #72 |  Danno49 | 

    Let me get this straight before I comment further – you are saying that what you said to me regarding the naive comment is factual to you because it’s your ethical response? Yeah, I’m paraphrasing what you already said – but I have my reasons for asking for your clarification.

  73. #73 |  Danno49 | 

    Forget it, you have clarified enough for me in your post directly after. I think we (at least I am) are getting caught up in the details.

    I couldn’t agree with you more about deserving what one gets. And as far as being disgusted with my comment, that’s just fine. Now that I see how you viewed it, I am disgusted with it, too.

    A pox on my household!

    Seriously, you have no idea how much what you said resonates with me. I think we just have different ways of expressing ourselves.

    Good day, sir.

  74. #74 |  Ron Good | 

    People often justify voting “for the lesser of two evils”, as if that’s a good thing. And such folks will often say “if you don’t vote, then you have no right to object…” or “you didn’t do what you could, so…” or some other such prattle. Some folks justify voting as self-defense.

    And it’s all nonsense.

    A vote is nothing more and always an attempt to push someone else around by electing a proxy to do the pushing.

    The only question is whether you end up on what’s called “the winning side”…for a time. Either way, by voting you keep the whole corrupt game in play.

    And the winning thugs get to claim a “mandate”.

  75. #75 |  Billy Beck | 

    “A pox on my household!”

    Hush.

    I told you that I’d noticed you here. I have good reasons for that.

  76. #76 |  Matt | 

    “A vote is nothing more and always an attempt to push someone else around by electing a proxy to do the pushing.”

    Yup. Voting voting is delegated coercion.

    It’s also a despicably cowardly act. No one I’ve ever met has the audacity to personally do to their neighbors what a vote-fueled government does.

  77. #77 |  Bryan Pick | 

    Ron Good –
    Perhaps you or Billy can set me straight on this, but my impression is this: you object to voting because (a) the guy who is ultimately elected is absolutely invariably going to sign off on mass coercion and (b) voting for anyone who would take that office would merely legitimate his supposed “authority” to do the indefensible.

    I won’t argue against (a). It’s quite evident. But if you’re looking at the eventual president-elect as the enemy general, why not take the opportunity to choose him?

    I understand the argument that it legitimates their authority to go along with the system, but what makes you think so? Voting for someone today doesn’t mean you can’t go back to snubbing him the next day. A politician doesn’t really care if only 40-odd percent of the eligible public votes, as long as a plurality of that minority votes for him. Ask Bill Clinton. When Joe Public pays attention long enough to ask why so many people aren’t voting, he’s going to hear (correctly) that the vast majority of that is apathy and ignorance. Your principled stand against voting is, for anyone who isn’t reading your net comments, an ambiguous signal swamped by even more noise than if you actually voted. Nobody studies your non-vote and takes that as a signal that they might be doing something wrong; if they take it to mean anything, it’s that they need to motivate more of the ignorant/apathetic sort. If you vote, you send a clearer signal — to everyone who will act on that information — about who’s less tolerable. (And I know you can sort your values well enough to make a good guess at who’s the more destructive.) Isn’t it true and widely perceived that most voters today are voting against the other guy rather than for “their” candidate? I.e., “I have a lot of problems with Candidate A but Candidate B scares the hell out of me.” The fact that “the lesser of two evils” is such a cliche suggests that it is.

    Even if you don’t participate in any other government function, you should vote. Again, picking the enemy general has its obvious advantages. You might think you’re playing a deeper game by withdrawing your stamp of approval, but unless you have some more compelling argument (and I’m listening, sincerely), voting looks pretty good to me.

  78. #78 |  Biden and civil liberties | 

    […] meet Radley Balko and Jeralyn […]

  79. #79 |  Edintally | 

    Ron,

    I’ll bite. If voting keeps the whole corrupt game in play…..

    What could we expect if no one voted at all. I mean nobody. All the candidates receive zero votes. Let’s assume no future candidates receive any votes either. From now until the end of days, no one votes.

    How are we better off? (as much as you can, please stay away from the rhetoric. Let’s hear some concrete, practical things about how our daily lives would be better)

  80. #80 |  Billy Beck | 

    “But if you’re looking at the eventual president-elect as the enemy general, why not take the opportunity to choose him?”

    I do not and will not stipulate to the slightest insinuation of his authority over my life. Or yours. That’s why.

    This is not subject to discussion. The matter is closed.

  81. #81 |  Billy Beck | 

    “How are we better off?”

    You’re the one who has to make up your mind about that. I know how I would be better off without this havoc that they wreak.

    In the name of “freedom”, no less.

    Hell, man: I’d probably live ten years longer without the bloody lying insults alone.

  82. #82 |  Edintally | 

    I’m just looking for enlightenment. How would you be better off there BB? Aside from living 10yrs longer from the lack of insults, of course.

  83. #83 |  Ron Good | 

    Bryqan, you wrote: “my impression is this: you object to voting because (a) the guy who is ultimately elected is absolutely invariably going to sign off on mass coercion and (b) voting for anyone who would take that office would merely legitimate his supposed “authority” to do the indefensible.”

    No.

    I object to voting because unless you have done me–or very, very clearly mean to do me–harm, I have a moral obligation to leave you alone. It’s the same moral obligation I insist be held around me, by you and by the government.

    Look, do you understand how essential this iss? The grabbers need you to vote and they’ll make the act of voting mandatory if they have to in order to get you to the polls; it’s happened in Australia already. And it’s that necessary to them.

    Edintally: you ask “How are we better off? (as much as you can, please stay away from the rhetoric. Let’s hear some concrete, practical things about how our daily lives would be better)

    For starters, you’d be leaving me alone and I’d be leaving you alone. That’s concrete–and it’s enough. It’s all I ask.

    Read this, over at Wendy McElroy’s place.

  84. #84 |  Edintally | 

    Sorry Ron, I’m thick. You really have to break it down for me. Besides my previous questions, how does my, and everyone else’s not voting, keep you from being molested?

  85. #85 |  Ron Good | 

    From now until the end of days, no one votes

    Oh, don’t go throwing the baby out with the bathwater. Democracy is a decent tool among others–it’s a method of making group decisions. But, it’s like a hammer. It isn’t all purpose.

    So, even though it’s not a rational an end state for society, when it comes to voluntary stuff, like with your own stuff, feel free to vote or whatever floats your boat. Heck, voting might work just as well as some other method.

    Now, back to this: “how does my, and everyone else’s not voting, keep you from being molested?

    It doesn’t. People will find other ways of wrongly manipulating folks, I’m sure. They just won’t have permission. That’s what voting gives them. I won’t give that permission.

    And I don’t see what about this from me: “For starters, you’d be leaving me alone and I’d be leaving you alone. That’s concrete–and it’s enough. It’s all I ask” needs breaking down. It’s simple, true and self-evident.

    Unless you have other plans for me. Do you?

  86. #86 |  Gray | 

    I understand that you endorsed Obama, plan to vote for him, and from that position as a voter you think your ideologically based objections against Biden still have some standing?
    Only joking.

    The truth is, you would find much to hate in every other likely Dem VP candidate, too. However, it doesn’t look like republicans hold more liberal (in the freedom meaning of the word) views than Biden on the issues you care about. So, your rant about the Dem VP selection is just whining about the consequences of the current zeitgeist of authoritarianism, and the real issue is the missing clout of liberal policies in US politics nowadays. Why not better write about this? That’s an issue where your expertise and political insight can bear some fruit. And where liberals and libertarians can find some common ground. But writing about libertarian discontent about the Dem ticket is fruitless.

  87. #87 |  Brett Harris - Shimer,Il | 

    “Biden’s record on other criminal justice and civil liberties issues is just as bad…also wants to expand federal penalties for hate crimes…supports a federal smoking ban.. [has a] “absolutely do not” lower it to 18 [ref. to drinking age]…believes “most violent crime is related to drugs” (if he had said “drug prohibition,” he’d be closer to the truth)…..

    So on and so on

    So from that and much of what is said I really don’t see a problem. Noone can please everyone all the time. As a member of the pleased group I think the whole article fails to say much and presents a number of weak arguements. For instance, why would I feel any adversity to Biden saying that he unconditionally opposes lowering the drinking age and votes against the expansion of gun control (not the banning of guns). And Biden is far from alone when he points toward drug use\abuse as the biggest factor in crime. That’s not a partisan sorta statement, it’s a fact.

  88. #88 |  Eric Dondero | 

    His vote in favor of the War in Iraq is one of the very few things to be celebrated by libertarians. Of course, all the other stuff sucks. But voting in favor of the War against Islamo-Fascism/Saddam Hussein is a major plus for Biden.

    The proper libertarian position is to oppose Islamo-Fascism. These are the folks after all who want to clothe our girlfriends/wives in ugly black burqas, jail our marijuana smoking buiddies, outlaw rock music and booze, and stone prostitutes in our town squares.

    Those who oppose the War in Iraq/Afghanistan are supporting Fascism, even faux libertarians who oppose the War.

    Those who support the War in Iraq/Afghanistan are the true Pro-Liverty supporters. We are the true adherents to the views of Mr. Libertarian himself Barry Goldwater: Fiscally conservative, Socially tolerant and Strong on Defense.

  89. #89 |  Edintally | 

    Don’t go getting all paranoid on me now.

    So democracy can be a decent tool for group decisions and by extension my vote doesn’t necessarily mean I’m always trying to push someone else around. My intent could instead be my attempt to take part in the decision making process. If in fact someone does get “pushed around”, that may just be a by product of the system and not necessarily the intent of my participation. In fact, isn’t it true that upon witnessing the by product of my vote, I could find other ways to participate, over and above voting, in an attempt to rectify a perceived injustice? So participation beyond voting could be seen as a check and balance system on a personal level.

    Bryan (77) wrote about this but it bears repeating; it also goes along with the Wendy site you linked. As an ex-member of the Democratic National Committee, your non-vote does not concern either party unless they think something might happen to get you pissed off enough to vote. Barring that, they don’t concern themselves with your non-vote. In fact, both parties benefit from your lack of participation. They save time and money by not having to seek out your vote. They also don’t have to answer to you when they want to do something. The fact is, that by not participating you invariably create and perpetuate the very things you fear and loathe about the government.

    That, my dear friend, is self-evident. (and I use the term sincerely)

  90. #90 |  Linda Morgan | 

    Edintally: In fact, both parties benefit from your lack of participation. They save time and money by not having to seek out your vote. They also don’t have to answer to you when they want to do something.

    Without getting into the larger, moral issue here, I just want to point out that these assertions are clearly not “self-evident.” On the contrary.

    Think for a minute about all the effort made to register new voters and to make registration ever easier — practically automatic by some schemes.* Through these means as well as through general, near incessant advertising of candidates, your vote is being constantly sought after, with no expense spared.

    And the triumphant office-holders do indeed have to at least make some show of answering — or mollifying or faking-out — any and all constituents who grumble loud enough, without regard to whether or for whom they voted.

    This is the way the game is played among participants. Nonparticipants do not “create and perpetuate” the situation by not playing.

    * Not to mention mandatory by others.

  91. #91 |  Ron Good | 

    my vote doesn’t necessarily mean I’m always trying to push someone else around

    This ought to be self-evident: your vote means exactly that if my participation and obligation regarding the results isn’t voluntary.

  92. #92 |  Billy Beck | 

    “The fact is, that by not participating you invariably create and perpetuate the very things you fear and loathe about the government.”

    That’s a lie.

    The people who do those thing do that.

    I see through you.

  93. #93 |  Robert Powell | 

    When a libertarian writes, “though he does seem to be fairly decent on free trade”., that means that Biden is a disaster in that area, too. Google: “Trade Truth #3: ‘Trade’ Talking Points” for why.

  94. #94 |  Simon | 

    If in fact someone does get “pushed around”, that may just be a by product of the system and not necessarily the intent of my participation.

    A “by product”? It is the system, intentions be damned.

  95. #95 |  Edintally | 

    Ron,

    You live here and even if you take the proper steps to renounce your US citizenship you are in fact agreeing to abide by the laws. You can certainly choose not to obey the law, as can we all, but there are punishments. Whether or not you agree is not relevant. It is an irrefutable fact. And again, since you refuse to participate you volunteer, in essence, to being enslaved.

    But that is your choice.

    Billy, that’s a neat trick. Can you tell me if my colon is sufficiently clean?

  96. #96 |  Ron Good | 

    I live in Canada–and I never agreed to abide by any laws, here or there. No one ever asked me.

    But one thing I am bloody sure of: I have the *right* to be a free man wherever I live, regardless of the regime.

    My rights are not a gift from god or the government–they’re *mine* and they are not permissions. They are especially not permissions at the whim of voters.

    Whether or not you agree is not relevant.

    To you-and I believe you. But that does tell me exactly where you stand, and who you stand with.

    But do me a favour: don’t prattle on about “But that is your choice” only a second after you regurgitate “Whether or not you agree is not relevant.” How can you couple those two sentences together and pretend you’re making sense?

  97. #97 |  Ron Good | 

    Can you tell me if my colon is sufficiently clean?

    It seems to be filled with your head.

    Too easy ;-)

  98. #98 |  Edintally | 

    See? I knew we had something in common. :)

  99. #99 |  Billy Beck | 

    Address the point I made or be known as a mindless punk.

  100. #100 |  Edintally | 

    Oh Billy! You are so mean. Pass me a tissue before I cry you big bad internet warrior :(

  101. #101 |  Billy Beck | 

    {shrug} That’s what I thought when I first saw you.

  102. #102 |  Zathael | 

    My parents were 60’s counterculture types involved in the creation of the good Dr.Timothy Leary’s Psychedelic religious movement, and were also involved in the civil rights movement, the antiwar movement, the evironmental movement, and many other worthy causes.
    All the causes they believed in were illegally infiltrated and neutralized during CoIntelPro’s reign of terror here in the US. The reason conservatives are always in power is that Left causes were supressed during illegal operations. Enter ‘Counter Intelligence Program New Left’ into your Google if you think I’m full of crap.
    The “war on drugs” is one last big CoIntelPro that keeps the left, minority ethnicities, and the poor down. Drug laws provide authoritarian society with an underclass of “undesireables” that can be exploited by the prison industrial/enforcement complex. Biden is to blame for today’s worst drug policies, policies which settle the question of whether or not the U.S. is a free country. It’s not. The U.S. gave up being a free country in order to pursue prohibition of drugs and sex, to appease powerful “neo-Puritans” with police state fantasies of cultural conformity.

    Joe Biden-I’ve hated him all my life. His policies make domestic enemies of our own enforcement and judicial apparatus. I’ll never forgive Obama for choosing this evil man, this known enemy of the people, to be our Vice President. I feared this would happen. I feared Obama would pick a serious enemy of the left. I feared that enemy would be Biden.
    Looks like I’m voting for Nader again. Nader created the EPA and the Freedom Of Information Act, doing great service to our country. Biden created the totalitarian Office Of National Drug Control Policy. I’m going to vote for the man who served our country.

  103. #103 |  Dirk Lamletter | 

    Electing Biden will get him out of the Senate? While I agree getting him out of the Senate is good, and figuratively speaking, running the two nutjobs on the Democratic ticket under a bus would be a step in the right direction, thinking that a Vice President is out of the Senate PROVES BEYOND ANY DOUBT that you know zilch. The Vice President of the United States is the President of the Senate. Time to bone-up on your civics lessons. Did you not take social studies in High School?…or were you just too busy trying to be the cool kid on the short, square bus?

  104. #104 |  Dirk Lamletter | 

    Ron Good: You are not very bright. You are arrogant and ignorant. Just because you don’t agree to be bound by the laws of land doesn’t mean you are not subject to them. It’s not up to you. Likewise, just because you don’t believe that doesn’t somehow make it untrue. Otherwise you wouldn’t exist because I don’t believe anyone could possibly be that stupid.

  105. #105 |  Honeyko | 

    Zathael
    The reason conservatives are always in power is that Left causes were supressed during illegal operations.

    News-flash! J. Edgar Hoover ain’t been around for what, thirty-five years? You’re going to need more excuses than CoIntelPro.

    What is the *real* reason conservatives are always in power? It’s because the Democrats simply cannot restrain themselves in their admiration for commie slime.

    — Didn’t they learn anything from Old Slick? To have a successful Presidency, you gotta whack the crap out of everybody who has any dirt on you.

    Obviously Kerry didn’t learn, because if the Swifties had been snuffed, they wouldn’t have been able to tell the world he was a lying phony. Equally obviously, Obama hasn’t learned from Kerry.

    ==//==

    ….CoIntelPro’s reign of terror….

    Clearly you do not know what a “reign of terror” actually resembles.

  106. #106 |  Ron Good | 

    It’s not up to you.

    Yeah, it is.

  107. #107 |  Ron Good | 

    Oh…but, Dirk, you can surrender anytime you want.

    Sounds like you already have.

  108. #108 |  Zathael | 

    Honeyko:
    Apparently you don’t actually know anything about CoIntelPro, the CIA’s terrorist “Chaos” program, project Merrimac or any of the rest of the ways in which conservatives permanently siezed power from the majority of the citizens, who were not very conservative at the time.
    If you knew a great deal about the subject, you would understand how vast and far-reaching these programs were. You would know thar reparations are owed. You would know they never really ended, but continue now under other names, including the “war on drugs” which is far more about suppressing permissive subcultures and denying liberals places to congregate for fear of drug raids than protecting people from excessively abusing drugs.

    You would know that the Left never really recovered its power after these illegal, terrorist acts of civil war.

    Due to things like CoIntelPro, the Left did not aquire any political power while its ideas were very popular. The Left was prevented from accumulating power right when their ideas could have become enduring. Right when their ideas could have become new policy and new legislation.

    After being illegally neutralized by the enemy combatants and infiltrators who made up the body of agents involved in things like CoIntelPro, the public was encouraged to believe that the Left had been a failure due to its own shortcomings, that the Left had “failed” because it was misguided on issues and not as large or as popular as it actually was. This is an outright lie I have dedicated my life to setting straight at all costs.

    I am the world’s foremost living expert on Counter Intelligence Program New Left. My father was one of the many founders of the New Left movement in the 1960’s (we’re talking original SDS). My inheritence and childhood education included vast amounts of information that was siezed from illegal terrorist CoIntelPro agents, most of which detailed plots against US citizens and their friends.

    It’s funny you should say it’s been 35 years since Hoover, as I turn 35 later this year. I grew up in fear, not just knowing that “they” were plotting against us like many of the Left, but actually knowing a lot of the whos and whys and what they did and who gave them the orders. And knowing it was all quite real, not some nutjob conspiracy theory nonsense. And a lifetime of seeing so few of them punished, while conservatives get more powerful every year with no actual Left to oppose them.

    The Democratic Party would never have the courage to put forward someone like Joe Biden, an avowed enemy of modern culture and a police state nut, if the Republicans and the richer, more right wing Democrats hadn’t had a little “favor” done for them by the US’s secret police. The Left among the Democrats who were not really just social conservatives in disguise could easily have prevented someone like Joe Biden from being chosen-if they had the power they would have had today if it weren’t for things like CoIntelPro.

    Most people involved in CoIntelPro rose to very high positions after the official revealing of the terrorist operations against american political activists. I have a long list of prominent people who were involved in CoIntelPro right here in fact. Many of them are judges who sentenced people to long terms for crimes the judge knew they did not commit. Some are police or other agents involved in planting false evidence or producing false charges. Many of wrongfully collect retirement or other benefits.

    No one who was involved in the CoIntelPros or similar ops should be walking around free, voting, living in a house, or collecting either retirement or medical benefits for their “service”.

    We need to make a very brutal example of the men that were involved in these operations. Many of us did not get to live in a democracy because of them, the only viable choices at the polls being “Very Conservative” or “Even More Conservative”.

    Because the Left does not have the power that the cultural legacy of the 50’s, 60’s, and 70’s should have provided it, the Left just gets to watch while they are constantly marginalized, in spite of being numerous. The objective of CoIntelPro was to make anyone who was not conservative give up trying to become involved in policy.

    Because this strategy worked, it is not clear if the government actually has legal soveriengity over the Left. The US government’s power to govern citizens from the Left did not come from the Democratic Process, since liberal activists were prevented from successfully exercising their civil right to advocate their causes and gain representation through the normal channels.

    So does the US government have actual jurisdiction over people from the Left, so that they are bound to obey laws written by the conservative-only Senate and Congress? Does the US government have the legal authority to punish a citizen who sympathizes with the New Left or other suppressed Left cause when they break a law written by the conservative-only Senate or Congress?

    No. Because the various branches of secret and local police participated in a vast, inarguably real and proven-to-exist conspiracy to prevent the Left from aquiring political power, the government does not have authority over the Left or enough legitimacy to claim such authority.

    You might say, they may not have the legal right to rule over you, but de facto they will. I grant that they have the physical power to punish us for not obeying their (not our) government, but not any legal right to do so. Until we have a social contract with the conservatives who forced the Left out of US policy, the US can enforce jurisdiction, but not legally claim jurisdiction, over us.

    As far as I’m concerned, there IS NO GOVERNMENT and NO LAW for people who are not conservative. The US government abdicated its authority to rule over the Left in order to suppress it.

    I want to thank you for helping me to decide something. I’m going to restart the New Left via the creation of a New Left Party. I am going to insist that the personal assets and stocks owned by those involved in things like CoIntelPro New Left are siezed and used to fund our campaigns. By taking the income that ex-CoIntelPros are paid for say, medical benefits or housing, and by siezing all their assets, we could quickly accumulate enough money to get back on track as a major power in modern politics.

    Remember that conservatives used the profits from the “war on drugs” to fund their own agendas.

    I have an extensive list of financial assets currently in the possession of men who were involved in things like CoIntelPro New Left. Some are quite wealthy because they were encouraged to steal money from activist groups and to do business with organized crime. We need that money back even if we need to sell these guys’ organs to raise it.

    The Patriot Act eliminated the statute of limitation protections for crimes commited as part of a terrorist plan. CoIntelPro and operation Chaos legally qualify as terrorist operations against the US for the purposes of the Patriot Act. This means we can legally hunt down and neutralize anyone who knowingly and willingly had anything to do with things like CoIntelPro.
    Since the Posse Commitatas Act of 1878 has been repealed, we can even direct the military to use its might against them, even on US soil, completely legally. They, after all, guilty of plotting to take over the US government. The only real reason they haven’t been charged is because they were successful, and therefore control the legal apparatus that was supposed to destroy them.

    Now “liberal ” is a dirty word, due to disinformation and infiltration campaigns, and also due to illegal assistance to conservative groups and causes on the part of the terrorist agents.

    The US government is a bit divided. Some would like to have at least some semblance of legitimacy. They can aquire that legitimacy by conquering those involved in things like CointelPro and siezing their wealth.
    I have a sizable part of the data necessary to direct loyal agents of our intelligence community in thier quest to restore legitimacy by neutralizing their illegal CoIntelPro counterparts.

    If the revived New Left Party gets anywhere, we will at least have a domestic anti-terrorism policy that actually makes sense and deals with real threats. Like the “war on drugs” much of the early stages could be funded via siezures of the assets and property of the guilty. Little Brother can show Big Brother all he’s learned living in his evil older brother’s shadow.

    So you understand: I am not a conspiracy theory nut, I am a conspiracy fact vindicator. CoIntelPro ruined my life and took away my faith in representative democracy almost completely. The last shred of that faith will go into making a Partnership For A CoIntelPro-Free America.

    Without breaking a single law, the political New Left will rise again. I have enough credibility in counterculture circles to get started. But people who want a break from guys like Joe Biden and William Bennet are going to have to get involved.

    If this doesn’t work, we can finally talk seriously about independence from conservatives and what that would entail. Because the Left was forced out of politics illegally, we have every right to propose a plan by which we can aquire the political representation denied us and get out from under the most totalitarian laws. It would NOT be sedition or treason for people from the cultural groups and causes suppressed by CoIntelPro to seek independence, because they were denied the right to influence policy through the exercising of their civil rights.

    A lot of US citizens fall under the dark shroud of CoIntelPro. Several racial ethnicities, including but not limited to Native Americans, African Americans, and Latin Americans, were plotted against for struggling for equality. They also plotted against the Environmental Movement, the Anti-War Movement, the Labor Movement, the Women’s Movement, the Gay Rights Movement, the Psychedelic Movement, and many others.

    When you add it all up, if you do not think it qualifies as civil war, then nothing qualifies as civil war. A civil war using the tactics of the Cold War. A Civil Cold War that we CAN and WILL punish them severely for engaging in.

    We will make a land where liberal and conservative are equal under the law, which is not the current situation.

    Look for the New Left soon. We’re coming back. We’ll be coming to your town to ask, “Do any CoIntelPros live in YOUR neighborhood?”

    Hasn’t it always been a mystery to you how the most politically active generation in the history of civilization had the least impact on policy of any major movement? CointelPro is the missing link. CoIntelPro is one of the many heads of a terrible hydra.

    Once again, if you think I am basically full of crap, enter Counter Intelligence Program New Left into your search engine. Or Counter Intelligence Program Black/White Hate. It’s all real, and all still unpunished. And the consequences of these programs have never been addressed. Efforts to investigate them were suppressed. They even destroyed the careers of elected politicians who tried to stop it. This fact is documented in great detail and these accusations are not denied by the government. Everyone who is anyone in the intelligence world knows all about this. So much of it is now public record, declassified, that they cannot even try to deny it.

    Enter CIA Operation Chaos into your search engine and see what you get. I dare you.

  109. #109 |  Honeyko | 

    If you’re going to compare the WoD or CoinTelPro to an actual “reign of terror”, then you’re simply fucking insane, and I see no further point in conversation.

    …Look for the New Left soon. We’re coming back. We’ll be coming to your town to ask, “Do any CoIntelPros live in YOUR neighborhood?”

    Bullshit. The so-called “New Left” is interested in exactly one thing and one thing only: bossing everybody else around. In short, they want to be everything, and more, that they assert their enemies are.

    This is a *libertarian* blog. Why are you here?

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  111. #111 |  Zathael | 

    Honeyko:
    I’m here because many Libertarians are concerned with things like the impact of CoIntelPro and the need to totally destroy it. I’m here because many libertarians are concerned about the police occupation called Prohibition.
    Your knee-jerk reactions don’t seem to have content. The libertarians’ positions have also been affected by the influence of CoIntelPro types.
    As for it being what it was, a reign of terror if you were actually Left, it’s clear you haven’t studied the subject in exaustive enough detail to realize its paramount importance as an issue.
    Deep down, you’re glad the real Left was neutralized. That’s why you don’t care.

    BTW, capitalist leaning libertarians: Trapping large segments of the poulation on very high rent land while they are stuck at very low wage jobs IS a form of slavery. When the US abolished slavery, they just rethought it.
    “We technically can’t own the slave, but if we own all the houses the lower class lives in and all the businesses that they can work for, it amounts to the same thing.” This was the thinking of conservative business men during the Reconstruction after the Civil War. Their objective was to create a form of capitalism that would not really benefit those who provided the labor.

    No, I’m no classical Marxist type, but a system does need to be found in which the poor cannot be forced off the land they occupy simply because they have run out of currency. the constant threat of homelessness means that the lower class cannot properly negotiate the value of their labor, because they are desperate for rent. That system just doesn’t work over time-an increasingly disenfranchised class grows while land ownership is collected in a handful of banks and real estate companies (who care nothing for our civilization). “Dollars” are just points in an economic game with little bearing on the actual situation with resources.
    The rent system we’re familiar with is designed to guarantee a supply of involuntary labor to get more rent money. It doesn’t make sense, and it’s not meant to.

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  114. #114 |  Honeyko | 

    Zatheal: BTW, capitalist leaning libertarians: Trapping large segments of the poulation on very high rent land …

    Oh, Jesus Christ…..

    I didn’t realize I was wasting my time talking to a flat-out Marxist.

    [sigh-off]

  115. #115 |  Zathael | 

    Honeyko: I said I was NOT a classical Marxist, did you not read the whole sentence?

    However, the human race wouldn’t have survived the Ice Age if tribesmen didn’t own their own spears and huts. That means that even the least important person in the tribe had a hut and their own spear.

    Our involuntary labor-for-rent system uses up the human lifespan. Original Debt has replaced Original Sin as a method of absolute control over the working class.

    We’re not supposed to be born and come of age already disenfranchised. Economically, too many of us begin where the the Roman, Norman, or similar conquests left us-trapped in a world that already belongs to someone else.

    An economy that made sense wouldn’t work like this. Since each generation has to reinvent the wheel economically, and since each generation has to win their civil rights back all over again, this civilization is a failure.

    For example, we had a revolution in which we finally established freedom of speech. Today, however, censorship is an extremely serious problem. We were the winning side, yet now we must eliminate censorship all over again.

    Another example: we established a legal system where you had to have a warrant to engage in searches. Now, with an avalanche of warrantless spying going on (most of it for illegal CoIntelPro-like agendas), we have to win that battle all over again from scratch.

    I’ll say it again: getting the working poor trapped onto land they don’t own, and working for businessess whose policies they cannot influence, is the keystone of modern slavery. You get them stuck in a situation where companies cooperate with politicians to hold down wages and benefits, while on the other side rent and costs go up and up. And the harder the lower class works, the more the profits are spent on increasing the gap. The profits the worker’s labor generates is used to buy up more land and resources, for resale to the workers after a large markup.

    The poor pay for everything twice: first their labor buys the land or resource for the classes above them, then they must buy it again from what’s left over after the rent in order to get access to it themselves.

    This is an extension of the medieval system of serfs, except that the masters are no longer directly responsible for the well being of the serf. Instead they are only responsible for the profitability of the estate.

    The underclass will never be able to aquire political influence as long as the majority of their lives’ productivity is wasted on next month’s rent money.

    Prohibition is lagely a political tool that prevents the Left from safely gathering together in numbers. Get five thousand liberal peaple in the same place, and one of them is going to light up a joint. This fact is used to crack down on the lot.

    The Rave Act isn’t about drug use, it’s about making people afraid to attend liberal-oriented events-while evil fundamentalists use their churches for Nazi-like hate rallies unmolested under the guise of protection of religious freedoms. More than a few liberals, and very much to my surprise a tiny number of conservatives, believe that the Psychedelic Experience is just as legitimate as a means of religious revelation as some evil conqueror’s Bible.

    We need to be on the same side, friends. I had a couple talks with Harry Brown when I was younger, and it made me feel like a bridge could possibly be built between the Libertarians and the rest of who who are opposed to the direction “our” country took after Kennedy’s death.

  116. #116 |  john | 

    Zathael, you paint a scary picture dude

    thanks for opening my eyes

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