LIBERTARIAN NEWS….It doesn’t rise to the level of R. W. Bradford’s masterful reporting from the 2004 Libertarian Party convention, but Brian Doherty gives us the low-down on the LP’s 2006 convention today in ? natch ? Reason magazine. Here’s my favorite line:

Most party-watchers agree that the Great Portland Plank Massacre of 2006 was the result of a concerted effort by the Libertarian Reform Caucus (LRC), led by former anarcho-Rothbardian turned “holistic politician” Carl Milsted.

How can you not love someone who’s described as a “former anarcho-Rothbardian turned holistic politician”?

Long story short, it turns out that the old LP platform included not just the stuff you’d expect (abolish Social Security, abolish the Postal Service, abolish Medicare), but also such things as an end to paper money and an end to all taxation. Oddly, some libertarians felt that these planks in their platform were unrealistic and doomed the party to irrelevancy. I don’t quite understand why anyone would feel this way, but apparently Milsted successfully orchestrated a coup against the platform and got it replaced by a more moderate and streamlined document.

Sadly, Doherty believes that even with this new, more practical manifesto, it’s “doubtful” that the LP can break the 50% barrier in American politics. That seems like a mighty defeatist attitude, doesn’t it?

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