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AN OPEN LETTER TO ALL LIBERTARIANS | 10-24-2004 | Dr. John Hospers

Posted on 10/24/2004 10:37:30 AM PDT by Y2Krap


From Elder Statesman John Hospers * * *


Dear Libertarian:

As a way of getting acquainted, let me just say that I was the first presidential candidate for the Libertarian Party back in l972, and was the author of the first full-length book, Libertarianism, describing libertarianism in detail. I also wrote the Libertarian Party’s Statement of Principles at the first libertarian national convention in 1972. I still believe in those principles as strongly as ever, but this year -- more than any year since the establishment of the Libertarian Party -- I have major concerns about the choices open to us as voting Americans.

There is a belief that’s common among many libertarians that there is no essential difference between the Democrat and Republican Parties -- between a John Kerry and a George W. Bush administration; or worse: that a Bush administration would be more undesirable. Such a notion could not be farther from the truth, or potentially more harmful to the cause of liberty.

The election of John Kerry would be, far more than is commonly realized, a catastrophe. Regardless of what he may say in current campaign speeches, his record is unmistakable: he belongs to the International Totalitarian Left in company with the Hillary and Bill Clintons, the Kofi Annans, the Ted Kennedys, and the Jesse Jacksons of the world. The Democratic Party itself has been undergoing a transformation in recent years; moderate, pro-American, and strong defense Senators such as Zell Miller, Joe Lieberman and Scoop Jackson are a dying breed. Observe how many members of the Democrat Party belong to the Progressive Caucus, indistinguishable from the Democratic Socialists of America. That caucus is the heart and soul of the contemporary Democratic Party.

Today’s Democrats have been out of majority power for so long that they are hungry for power at any price and will do anything to achieve it, including undermining the President and our troops in time of war; for them any victory for Americans in the war against terrorism is construed as a defeat for them.

The Democratic Party today is a haven for anti-Semites, racists, radical environmentalists, plundering trial lawyers, government employee unions, and numerous other self-serving elites who despise the Constitution and loath private property. It is opposed to free speech – witness the mania for political correctness and intimidation on college campuses, and Kerry’s threat to sue television stations that carry the Swift Boat ads. If given the power to do so, Democrats will use any possible means to suppress opposing viewpoints, particularly on talk radio and in the university system. They will attempt to enact “hate speech” and “hate crime” laws and re-institute the Fairness Doctrine, initiate lawsuits, and create new regulations designed to suppress freedom of speech and intimidate their political adversaries. They will call it “defending human rights.” This sort of activity may well make up the core of a Kerry administration Justice Department that will have no truck with the rule of law except as a weapon to use against opponents.

There are already numerous stories of brownshirt types committing violence against Republican campaign headquarters all over the country, and Democrat thugs harassing Republican voters at the polls. Yet not a word about it from the Kerry campaign. Expect this dangerous trend to increase dramatically with a Kerry win, ignored and tacitly accepted by the liberal-left mainstream media. This is ominous sign of worse things to come.

Kerry, who changes direction with the wind, has tried to convince us that he now disavows the anti-military sentiments that he proclaimed repeatedly in the l970s. But in fact he will weaken our military establishment and devastate American security by placing more value on the United Nations than on the United States: for example he favors the Kyoto Treaty and the International Criminal Court, and opposed the withdrawal of the U.S. from the ABM Treaty. He has been quoted as saying that it is honorable for those in the U.S. military to die under the flag of the U.N. but not that of the U.S. Presumably he and a small cadre of bureaucrats should rule the world, via the U.N. or some other world body which will make all decisions for the whole world concerning private property, the use of our military, gun ownership, taxation, and environmental policy (to name a few). In his thirty-year career he has demonstrated utter contempt for America, national security, constitutional republicanism, democracy, private property, and free markets.

His wife’s foundations have funneled millions of dollars into far-left organizations that are virulently hostile to America and libertarian principles. Not only would these foundations continue to lack transparency to the American people, they would be given enormous vigor in a Kerry administration.

Already plans are afoot by the Kerry campaign to steal the coming election via a legal coup, e.g. to claim victory on election night no matter what the vote differential is, and initiate lawsuits anywhere and everywhere they feel it works to their advantage, thus making a mockery of our election process, throwing the entire process into chaos -- possibly for months -- and significantly weakening our ability to conduct foreign policy and protect ourselves domestically. Let me repeat: we are facing the very real possibility of a political coup occurring in America. Al Gore very nearly got away with one in 2000. Do not underestimate what Kerry and his ilk are going to attempt to do to America.

George Bush has been criticized for many things – and in many cases with justification: on campaign finance reform (a suppression of the First Amendment), on vast new domestic spending, on education, and on failing to protect the borders. No self-respecting libertarian or conservative would fail to be deeply appalled by these. His great virtue, however, is that he has stood up -- knowingly at grave risk to his political viability -- to terrorism when his predecessors, Ford, Carter, Reagan, and Clinton did not. On many occasions during their administrations terrorists attacked American lives and property. Clinton did nothing, or engaged in a feckless retaliation such as bombing an aspirin factory in the Sudan (based on faulty intelligence, to boot). Then shortly after Bush became president he was hit with “the big one:” 9/11. It was clear to him that terrorism was more than a series of criminal acts: it was a war declared upon U.S. and indeed to the entire civilized world long before his administration. He decided that action had to be taken to protect us against future 9/11s involving weapons of mass destruction, including “suitcase” nuclear devices.

Indeed, today it is Islamic fundamentalism that increasingly threatens the world just as Nazis fascism and Soviet communism did in previous decades. The Islamo-fascists would be happy to eliminate all non-Muslims without a tinge of regret. Many Americans still indulge in wishful thinking on this issue, viewing militant Islam as a kind of nuisance, which can be handled without great inconvenience in much the same way as one swats flies, rather than as hordes of genocidal religious fanatics dedicated to our destruction.

The president has been berated for taking even minimal steps to deal with the dangers of this war (the allegations made against the Patriot Act seem to me based more on hysteria and political opportunism than on reality). But Bush, like Churchill, has stood steadfast in the face of it, and in spite of the most virulent hate and disinformation campaign that any American president has had to endure. Afghanistan is no longer a safe haven for terrorists. Saddam’s regime is no longer a major player in the worldwide terror network. Libya has relinquished their weapons of terror. The Pakistani black market in weapons of mass destruction has been eliminated. Arafat is rotting in Ramallah. Terrorist cells all over the world have been disrupted, and thousands of terrorists killed. The result: Americans are orders of magnitude safer.

National defense is always expensive, and Bush has been widely excoriated for these expenditures. But as Ayn Rand memorably said at a party I attended in l962, in response to complaints that “taxes are too high” (then 20%), “Pay 80% if you need it for defense.” It is not the amount but the purpose served that decides what is “too much.” And the purpose here is the continuation of civilized life on earth in the face of vastly increased threats to its existence.

Bush cut income tax rates for the first time in fifteen years. These cuts got us moving out of the recession he inherited, and we are all economically much better off because of them. 1.9 million new jobs have been added to the economy since August 2003. Bush has other projects in the wind for which libertarians have not given him credit. For example:

(l) A total revision of our tax code. We will have a debate concerning whether this is best done via a flat tax or a sales tax. If such a change were to occur, it would be a gigantic step in the direction of liberty and prosperity. No such change will occur with Kerry.

(2) A market-based reform of Social Security. This reform, alone, could bring future budget expenditures down so significantly that it would make his current expenditures seem like pocket change. Kerry has already repudiated any such change in social security laws.

The American electorate is not yet psychologically prepared for a completely libertarian society. A transition to such a society takes time and effort, and involves altering the mind-set of most Americans, who labor under a plethora of economic fallacies and political misconceptions. It will involve a near-total restructuring of the educational system, which today serves the liberal-left education bureaucracy and Democratic Party, not the student or parent. It will require a merciless and continuous expose of the bias in the mainstream media (the Internet, blogs, and talk radio have been extremely successful in this regard over the past few years). And it will require understanding the influence and importance of the Teresa Kerry-like Foundations who work in the shadows to undermine our constitutional system of checks and balances.

Most of all, it will require the American people -- including many libertarians – to realize the overwhelming dangerousness of the American Left – a Fifth Column comprised of the elements mentioned above, dedicated to achieving their goal of a totally internationally dominated America, and a true world-wide Fascism.

Thus far their long-term plans have been quite successful. A Kerry presidency will fully open their pipeline to infusions of taxpayer-funded cash and political pull. At least a continued Bush presidency would help to stem this tide, and along the way it might well succeed in preserving Western civilization against the fanatic Islamo-fascists who have the will, and may shortly have the weapons capability, to bring it to an end.

When the stakes are not high it is sometimes acceptable, even desirable, to vote for a ‘minor party’ candidate who cannot possibly win, just to “get the word out” and to promote the ideals for which that candidate stands. But when the stakes are high, as they are in this election, it becomes imperative that one should choose, not the candidate one considers philosophically ideal, but the best one available who has the most favorable chance of winning. The forthcoming election will determine whether it is the Republicans or the Democrats that win the presidency. That is an undeniable reality. If the election is as close as it was in 2000, libertarian voters may make the difference as to who wins in various critical “Battle Ground” states and therefore the presidency itself. That is the situation in which we find ourselves in 2004. And that is why I believe voting for George W. Bush is the most libertarian thing we can do.

We stand today at an important electoral crossroads for the future of liberty, and as libertarians our first priority is to promote liberty and free markets, which is not necessarily the same as to promote the Libertarian Party. This time, if we vote libertarian, we may win a tiny rhetorical battle, but lose the larger war.

John Hospers

Los Angeles, CA

TOPICS: Announcements; Constitution/Conservatism; Culture/Society; Editorial; Foreign Affairs; Front Page News; Government; News/Current Events; Philosophy; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: bush; election; endorsement; florida; fourmoreyears; gwb2004; hospers; johnhospers; kerry; libertarians; ohio
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To: ModelBreaker
At one time I took a look at the Libertarian's. I didn't stay around to long. On an absolute Utopian view it looks pretty good, but overall there philosophy just won't fly. Most Libertarians, I believe, are frustrated 'Pubs. So, Welcome home to one and all.
61 posted on 10/24/2004 11:31:03 AM PDT by fritzz
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To: aj7360
A lot of good points in this letter.

Could someone let me know if/when this is confirmed as real??
62 posted on 10/24/2004 11:31:51 AM PDT by Castro (My money, my vote, my Bush.)
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To: Y2Krap

Um, yahoo search lists only one John Hospers living in CA. If anyone wants to call him up and confirm that would be nice, though I'd bet he wouldn't like to be swarmed with phone calls .

63 posted on 10/24/2004 11:32:48 AM PDT by bahblahbah
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To: rineaux
10K lawyers alone equal chaos. Gore tried it to an extent in 2000, but kerry has brought more force with him. We have to stop the hi-jacking of this election and America.

Kerry may get his very own French Revolution over here. :>) People are very sick of lawyers hijacking our system.

64 posted on 10/24/2004 11:33:06 AM PDT by boycott
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To: fritzz
You are endorsing Mr. Kerry? Bold stroke.

I endorse and will cast my vote for Mr. Badnarik.

However, given the astounding ineptitude of Republicans and the even more astounding criminality of DemocRATs I fully expect Mr. Kerry to claim the White House in a few short days.

Perhaps my use of the Free Republic Search engine is incompetent, but I am unable to find more than a few posts on the topic of Hugo Chavez and the Venezuelan elections which I believe will be the paradigm for our election in November.

Best regards,

65 posted on 10/24/2004 11:33:58 AM PDT by Copernicus (A Constitutional Republic revolves around Sovereign Citizens, not citizens around government.)
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To: Y2Krap

Yet to hear from Harry "blame America first" Browne.

Whata partee.

66 posted on 10/24/2004 11:34:13 AM PDT by truth_seeker
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To: Y2Krap

"johnjhospers" is currently online on AIM. I'm afraid I don't have the nerve to IM him... not that it's really him.

Any takers?? lol

67 posted on 10/24/2004 11:34:51 AM PDT by aj7360
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To: Castro

Why does this letter look familiar?? Isn't this a compilation of quotes from others??

68 posted on 10/24/2004 11:35:18 AM PDT by OCMike
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To: Homer_J_Simpson; Dead Corpse; atomicpossum; fritzz
I was a Libertarian from 1972, (my first voting election) until September 15, 2001. That was the day I heard Harry Brown say on O'Rielly's show that we should deal with OBL by way of the institutions of international law. And that was the end of the LP for me. Badnarik is even worse. Frankly, I had no problem taking the LP pledge that "One must never initiate the aggressive use of force," but it appears that too many L(l)ibertarians have forgotten that when Ayn Rand laid down that law, it had two parts to it, the second of which is, "and when aggressive force is used against one, he must never fail to respond."

There is a difference between Democrats and Republicans. For all of GWB's many faults, and his many failures as a (compassionate) conservative, only a fool could support the LP in this election.

69 posted on 10/24/2004 11:35:48 AM PDT by FredZarguna (Wearing BLACK Pajamas, in honor of Hanoi John)
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Comment #70 Removed by Moderator

To: franklog
Congratulations to John Hospers for getting it. It will be hard to fight the Republican v Libertarian ideological battle when even more of us are dead from terrorist attacks and the rest of us are having all of our money taken by the federal government and speaking French or Arabic.

Can't improve on this.

71 posted on 10/24/2004 11:38:03 AM PDT by Stentor
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To: boycott

I hope so. there is only 9 days left till the election. I hope a great portion of Americans who have been sleeping wake up and vote for W. We need/want a landslide. Looks like Hawaii, NJ, MN are starting to wake up.

72 posted on 10/24/2004 11:38:27 AM PDT by rineaux (hardcore for W04)
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Sure would like some AUTHENTICATION on this...

73 posted on 10/24/2004 11:39:21 AM PDT by OCMike
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To: bahblahbah

Funny you should post that.

I just got an email from the aol email address which gave me the same phone number and confirmed that he wrote the endorsement. (But, of course, that isn't exactly an ironclad authentication...)

I gave him the URL of this thread and asked him if he'd care to discuss with us.

74 posted on 10/24/2004 11:42:03 AM PDT by George Smiley (The only 180 that Kerry hasn't done is the one that would release ALL his military records.)
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To: George Smiley

Will check later to see if there is any type of authentication for this post...

75 posted on 10/24/2004 11:44:27 AM PDT by Federalist_In_Michigan (History teaches that wars begin when governments believe the price of aggression is cheap. -RWR)
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To: Copernicus
Perhaps my use of the Free Republic Search engine is incompetent, but I am unable to find more than a few posts on the topic of Hugo Chavez and the Venezuelan elections which I believe will be the paradigm for our election in November.

Yea, you've got a point...Jimmy Carter watching over both. Could be some similarities. There were some posts.

Mr. Badnarik, as I remember has run for a few offices, but never won. Young, Good looking, programmer, who instructs a lot for a living. Nothing wrong, but not much of a candidate. So you are really doing is voting against W...obvious.

76 posted on 10/24/2004 11:45:49 AM PDT by fritzz
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To: Dead Corpse
"The LP pretty much lost me when they embraced pacifism instead of non-initiation of force."

I wasn't aware of that. Are you saying the Libertarian will not strike first when he knows a fist is coming at his face? Will a Libertarian shoot first if someone points a loaded pistol at him and knows they are going to pull the trigger?

77 posted on 10/24/2004 11:47:03 AM PDT by Eastbound ("Neither a Scrooge nor a Patsy Be")
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To: George Smiley

Thanks for your work in contacting Dr. Hospers.

From what I know of him, this letter fits his worldview.

78 posted on 10/24/2004 11:47:39 AM PDT by headsonpikes (Spirit of '76 bttt!)
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To: Cultural Jihad

L. (not H.) Ron Hubbard was a totalitarian--never anything close to a libertarian in any sense, even if he tried to cloak himself that way.

The Libertarian Party itself has lurched over to the looney, Bill Maherish, hedonistic side, and abandoned their rational, ethical individualism and laissez faire capitalism foundations.

I'm thrilled to hear Dr. Hospers endorse President Bush.

79 posted on 10/24/2004 11:52:15 AM PDT by HalleysFifth
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To: Graymatter
Kerry is a globalist in the sense that the Clintons could never approach.

There's only one difference between Kerry's politics and Hillary's--Hillary is a better politician. She hasn't been as rabidly anti-war recently as Kerry has, because she knows the country is basically conservative. But make no mistake, if Hillary had her way, the UN (headed by her sock puppet husband) would rule the world, and US taxpayers would pay a global income tax. US sovereignty would be gone, its borders would disappear, and the Constitution would be replaced by a global constitution, drafted by a delegation from all nations including Syria, Iran, North Korea and a newly created Palestinian State. Hillary has been planning this all of her adult life, and given the chance, she will do her damnedest to make it happen.

80 posted on 10/24/2004 11:58:59 AM PDT by giotto
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