Document:LP News 1973 September-October Issue 16
LP NOW THIRD LARGEST NATIONWIDE MINORITY PARTY!
Sometime in August, combined National and State LP membership passed the 3,000 mark, according to the best estimates we can make. And, while this may not sound overwhelming, in a nation of 210 million people, it is in fact a striking testament to the power of an idea whose time has come, and to the dedication of the individuals who have made our growth to date possible.
For while 3,000 may not sound like very many, at first glance, it is actually quite significant. Because, in less than two years, the LP has grown to become the third largest nationwide minority party, lagging behind only the American Party and the Peoples Party in terms of membership.
This means that we have surpassed such older and better-financed parties as the Communists, Socialist Workers, and Socialist Labor parties, and are "hot on the heels" of the two "big" minority parties. Looking at it another way, we are now in the same league as the American Party, which had the benefit of the multi-million-dollar Wallace campaign in 168, and over five years in which to grow, and the Peoples Party, which has also had five years and many hundreds of thousands of dollars to work with.
Furthermore, both the AP and the PP are losing ground. The AP has been deserted by both Wallace and Schmitz; their current paid membership is estimated at less than 20,000. The Peoples Party is a coalition coming apart at the seams; their recent National Organizing Conference (their equivalent of our Cleveland Convention) drew only 48 registrants from 17 states, including their national officers and observers from other minority parties.
Furthermore, there is considerable dissatisfaction within the ranks in both the AP and PP. The AP has recently purged a number of their state chairmen, and appears to be moving rapidly towards the most repressive form of rightwing reactionism; members with even the slightest sympathy for civil libertarianism are leaving in droves. Analogously, the Peoples Party is rapidly moving leftward, now taking the stand that no compromise with capitalism is possible; as a result, civil libertarians who were attracted to the PP despite its very mixed economic philosophy are now leaving, a the hard-line socialists become completely dominant.
These developments are to be welcomed, from our viewpoint, as we are already receiving inquiries from individuals who are finding the "new" AP and PP too authoritarian and inconsistent for their tastes.
For this reason, it is now more impo1·tant than ever that we place equal stress on our support for economic freedom and civil liberties. If we redouble our efforts on both fronts, it seems virtually certain that we can easily outdistance the Peoples Party in the near future; there is already talk that the PP and the other leftwing parties may merge into one organization in the next year or so.
Indeed, we now predict that by 176, there will be only three significant minority parties - ourselves, the American Party, and a United Socialist party of some sort -- all approximately equal in strength. And by 1980, we are confident that the Libertarian Party will be the third party in America.
FLP slate on ballot for N.Y. City election
Only hours before press time, we received a long distance phone call from Gary Greenberg in New York, telling us that it is "99-9% certain" that the Free Libertarian Party's slate will be on the ballot for the upcoming elections in New York City on November 6th.
The FLP filed petitions containing a heroic 20,500 signatures on August 21 -- nearly three times the required 7,500. As of press time, no challenges to the FLP petitions had been filed, and barring a personal challenge from rival candidates, none can be filed from now on.
Immediately upon filing their petitions, the FLP candidates began receiving excellent media coverage; Mayoral candidate Fran Youngstein has been interviewed for radio, TV and newspaper stories several times already.
The major races are Fran's Mayoral bid, and Gary's race for District Attorney; he is the only opponent to incumbent Frank Hogan.
MAKE CHECKS FOR FRAN'S CAMPAIGN TO "YOUNGSTEIN FOR MAYOR." CHECKS FOR GARY TO "CITIZENS FOR JUSTICE." MAIL BOTH TO FREE LIBERTARIAN PARTY, ROOM 201, 16 W. 38TH STREET, N.Y. CITY 10018
BITS & PIECES
EXECCOMM RULES ON LIFE MEMBERSHIPS
In response to a request for a ruling, the LP National ExecComm has voted that Life and Life Sustaining Memberships are not refundable in case of a later change of heart.
IAI "CONSTANTS" NOT ACCEPTABLE CURRENCY
Due to some unfortunate experiences, LP National has adopted a policy of not accepting International Arbitrage "Constants" in payment for material or dues. U.S. Currency or gold will be accepted.
1973 LIBERTARIAN HANDBOOK PUBLISHED
"Everything you always wanted to know about the libertarian movement" is in the new 1973 Libertarian Handbook published by Avenue Victor Hugo, 193 Beacon Street, Boston MA 02116.
This year's edition runs 112 pages, densely packed with information on individuals, organizations, publications, and issues. Overall, it is an excellent reference work, although two minor faults should be noted. One is that articles sometimes suddenly "disappear" at the end of a page, with no clue as to where they resume. The other is a lack of critical data in the listings; even the schlockiest outfits are described as "professional" and "well run."
Nonetheless, the Libertarian Handbook is an unmatched source of information about every aspect of "the movement,"and, at $2, is a super-bargain.
"COMMENTARY" HAS LP AD IN CURRENT ISSUE
The September issue of Commentary, a highly respected liberal magazine, contains a full-page ad for the Libertarian Party. Thanks for preparing this very professional and appealing ad go to Norm Muchnick and Rich Murnak of New York.
OPEN FORUM IN "NEWSWEEK"
It has been brought to our attention that Newsweek magazine has a one-page feature called 11My Turn,11 where individuals may present their views on the issues of the day. Newsweek has been the best of the three weekly newsmagazines, as far as covering the libertarian movement;·we suggest that those of you who are handy with a pen or typewriter take a crack at "My Turn."
THREE MORE FINANCIAL ANGELS
EXECCOMM MEETING, DENVER, NOVEMBER 24
At the Radisson Hotel, all day. Observers Welcome.
WALL ST. JOURNAL NOTES DECLINE IN PUBLIC'S CONFIDENCE IN POLITICIANS
Alan T. Otten, writing in the Wall St. Journal August 9th, devoted a column to the observ tion that there is increasing revulsion against the "political pros." Thanks to Watergate, Mr. Otten notes, people across the country are beginning to feel that it's time to "throw the rascals out" -- a feeling that makes the traditional advantage of incumbency into a liability. Public sentiment, he says, seems to now be "we can't do any worse, and we might do better" by throwing out the present officeholders and replacing them with people who say "I've never run for office before but isn't it time we had someone in there who thinks as we do?"
FOOD FOR THE HUNGRY
Our observation, in the last LP NEWS, that it might be smart to stock up on food supplies, prompted a letter from Mike Oliver of Nevada, noting that he is a distributor for the PERMA-PAK line of dried and preserved food. If you're interested in learning more about this form of protection against disaster, write Mike at the Nevada Coin Exchange, P.O. Box 485, Carson City, Nevada 89701.
AA FOLDS, BFL HAS HOSPERS RECORD
Dr. Hospers informs us that Academic Associates has gone into bankruptcy, and that anyone wishing copies of his "Politics of Liberty" (records or tape) can now get them through Books for Libertarians, 422 First Street SE, Washington DC 20003. Write for prices.
LIBERTY AMENDMENT PROSPECTS GOOD
Willis Stone, National Chairman of the Liberty Amendment Committee, informs us that chances are good for legislative action on the L.A. Resolution in Michigan (possibly this year), and (for next year) Oklahoma, Maryland, Florida, Delaware, and Alaska. If you live in one of these states, drop your legislators a line, indicating your support.
PONTE COLUMN DEVOTED TO LP
Lowell Ponte Is syndicated column for July 25, which is carried in numerous papers, was devoted to telling of the government's spying on former Utah LP chairman Karl Bray; Lowell asked how come it's a big deal when Republicans spy on Democrats, but everyone ignores it when Republicans spy on Libertarians?
BEST COVERAGE OF THE '73 LP CONVENTION
was in the July issue of A is A News, which is now only $3 for 12 issues. For a copy of the July issue, send 50¢ to MEGA, 9730 Hyne, Brighton, Michigan 48116.
BITS & PIECES CONTINUED
Herbert Spencer's classic piece, The Right to Ignore The State, is now back in print; single copies are 50¢ from Cayman Press, Box 1211, Cupertino, CA 95014. Quantity prices on request.
The great libertarian record, "1984,"by Spirit, long impossible to find, is now out on an album, "The Best of Spirit," available at your local record store.
Economist George Hagedorn, writing in NAM Reports, August 6: [Economic] Controls will be ended, quite simply, because the economic damage they are doing has become so obvious and so severe that they can no longer_be tolerated. Sure hope you're right, George.
SPOTLIGHT ON STATE PARTIES
ALASKA LP continues to grow, slowly but surely; our northernmost state still has the highest concentration of LP members per capita of any state in the nation. Chairman Grant LaPoint reports that the party has had great success at gaining public interest by using a twenty-question quiz ahd a large two-axis political systems map at the state fair in Palmer; many passers-by who took the quiz and then plotted their own position on the chart subsequently brought others over, to compare positions. Grant states "It is no exaggeration to say that we had the most talked-about political booth at the fair, and we were mentioned from time to time during the following months on local talk shows regarding this device."
ARIZONA LP is preparing to mount a massive petition drive to obtain recognition as an official (ballot-qualified) political party.
CALIFORNIA LP continues to be one of the most active and rapidly growing parties in the nation. CLP representatives, including John Hospers, John Taylor, Ed Crane, Ed Clark and Bill Susel have made several speaking appearances around the state; Dr. Hospers delivered his second annual 4th of July address in Reseda, where CLP's Region 11 had arranged a picnic. Other regions have been hosting speakers of many viewpoints, including Willis Stone, Gary Allen, and Jim Miller (San Francisco ACLU). California libertarians were also active in the anti-tax and anti-draft demonstrations this swnmer. CLP Chairman Ed Clark has joined with leaders of other minority parties in a suit to strike down California's extremely discriminatory ballot qualification laws. CLP also held a press conference and cocktail party for NY Mayoral candidate Fran Youngstein when she was in Los Angeles in late July.
COLORADO LP also arranged a press conference and social get-togethers for Fran, in early August. The Mile High State LP is planning its second annual state convention in October; hoped-for attendance is 100.
CONNECTICUT LP, re-organizing under the leadership of Fran Moore, has grown from 3 to 7 members. FLORIDA libertarians have formed a Committee to Organize the Florida LP, and have sent out a mailing to several hundred prospects; they expect to get rolling this fall, according to Temporary Chairman Rick Spilman.
HAWAII LP had a booth at Hawaii's largest shopping center, and handed out copies of a "Federal Horrorscope," which attracted many peoples' attention. They also had a fund-raising dinner July 4th, with another scheduled this fall. They have been encouraged by off-the-record remarks from GOP leaders, to the effect that 11the time may be ripe for the libertarian movement to make headway in Hawaii."
ILLINOIS LP has inaugurated a regular monthly series of dinner meetings in Chicago, with prominent libertarians as speakers. LPI has submitted a bid (jointly with [[Libertarian Party of Wisconsin|Wisconsin LP[[) for the '74 Convention, and has also announced its intention of bidding for the '76 Convention.
KENTUCKY LP is easily the most active of our smaller parties. Chairman Susan Brown has been in the forefront of anti-draft activities in the state (see front page picture, August SIL News), and the KENTUCKY LP has been the leading outspoken opponent of a new Kentucky law that discriminates against blacks by requiring sickle-cell tests for young black couples who apply for a marriage license. Susan has been publicizing the KLP and the libertarian philosophy via an excellent series of articles in the Louisville Defender. The KLP has also started its own newsletter, The Libertarian Front.
LOUISIANA LP has been making its opinions felt by the state's Constitutional Committee, which is preparing recommendations for a new state constitution. State Representative Woody Jenkins, a libertarian, is the "swing" vote on the Bill of Rights Committee, and has been gaining media coverage_by voting with the committee's four conservatives on some points and its five liberal members on others, to produce a fairly libertarian report. Woody is working with the Louisiana LP whenever possible, and recently sent out a tabloid to voters in his district, which contained, among other things, a reprint of your editor's "Political Systems Analysis" article.
MARYLAND LP has been growing by leaps and bounds since the National Convention, thanks to the tireless efforts of Temporary Chairman William Bobick, his wife Peggy, and Stephen and Barbara McClain of Baltimore. Membership is now over 30 -- triple what it was three months ago. The Maryland crew also worked with Region 7 ExecComm member Eric Scott Royce of Virginia, distributing LP literature at the recent YAF Convention in Washington DC; several new members were recruited, but Scott reports that YAF is projecting, more and more, as a "has-been" organization.
MICHIGAN LP now has over 100 members, nearly half of whom turned out for the MLP's annual convention in Detroit last May. A MLP member, Richard Durant, will be seeking the GOP gubernatorial nomination in Michigan next year; Michigan LP hopes to generate publicity on his behalf by having the '74 LP Convention in Detroit.
MINNESOTA LP has been sponsoring a series of lectures on the Basic Principles of Objectivism.
NEW HAMPSHIRE LP's former Chairman, Arthur Ketchen, has been working with the Henry George School, and is scheduled to address the Georgists' annual national get-together in Maryland over the Labor Day Weekend.
NEW JERSEY LP is moving into high gear on the Goodson for Governor campaign (see insert}. They have produced an excellent campaign brochure, bearing the headline "You are NOT a Natural Resource," and an attractive bumpersticker, saying "Goodson for UnGovernor." In addition, NJLP continues to publish a well-written and entertaining newsletter, Premise. Goodson, who is on the ballot, received a fantastic writeup in the Point Pleasant Reporter (circulation 67,000); the story on his campaign, and the NJLP, was the major front page story in the Reporter's August 8 issue; it continued on page 2, and totaled a full page. We strongly urge all LP members to make at least a small contribution to the Goodson campaign.
NEW YORK LP (the Free Libertarian Party) is devoting the bulk of its efforts at this time to the New York City elections (see story on page 1, and insert). Meanwhile, however, Sandy Cohen is gaining momentum in his campaign for the '74 Congressional race in upstate Poughkeepsie. You can help Sandy raise funds, and get some good nuts-and-bolts information on how to run a campaign, by subscribing to the Sandy Cohen Nitty-Gritty Political Newsletter; $5 per year, from Citizens for Cohen, Box 1776, Poughkeepsie NY 12601.
OHIO LP members conducted a survey to find out how the public at large feels about the idea of impeaching President Nixon. They found that many people do not understand what impeachment is, and that only about 25% of those surveyed favor impeachment. About 300 people signed impeachment petitions, despite many peoples' fears that signing such a petition would result in government harrassment.
OKLAHOMA LP held its second annual convention in Oklahoma City on August 18 and 19; their new State Chairman is Tom Laurent of Norman. Plans were finalized for a booth at the State Fair Sept 21-30, a petition drive to qualify the Oklahoma LP for the ballot, and another petition drive to require a referendum before new taxes can be levied, with two-thirds approval required. National ExecComm member D Frank Robinson held a press conference to unveil a new plan which would make campaign contributions anonymous; he has contacted semi-libertarian Congressman Steve Symms (Ida) concerning his proposal.
OREGON LP also held its second annual convention on August 18; featured speakers included Tonie Nathan, Jim Casterline and Hurb Booth. New State Chairman is Laura Belles. Tonie Nathan and Paul Pferdner will probably be candidates for State Legislature next year.
TEXAS LP has new officers, chosen at their Convention in June; Sarah Helber is the new Chairman, and Mike Holmes is Vice-Chairman. TLP participated in a seminar at the University of Texas at Austin, and has been receiving good media coverage; local groups have been producing and distributing LP literature. Guy Story Brown of Dallas has been handling the Lone Star State's bid for the '74 LPCon.
UTAH LP's new Chairman, George Chapman, recently had a quarter-page-long letter in the Salt Lake Tribune, explaining the libertarian philosophy and the positions of the UTAH LP. Plans are being laid to get the Party qualified for the ballot, and to raise funds. Current activities include a series of mailings to Utah politicians.
LP of Canada to convene in Oct.
The international nature of the libertarian movement (which recognizes no statist distinct ions between individuals of different countries) is being dramatically demonstrated by our friends North of the Border.
Inspired by our successes here in the United States, Canadian libertarians will hold the first national convention of the Libertarian Party of Canada on October 25-28, in Toronto. They hope to have approximately 50 people in attendance (half as many as we had in Denver in '72, from a population 1/10th that of the United States).
Libertarian activity in Canada has been accelerating steadily in the last two years; they now·boast a first-rate magazine, Option, and libertarian activist groups in several provinces. Representatives from these latter will form the nucleus of the Canadian LP.
While legal considerations make it impossible for the U.S. and Cadadian Parties to offer each other more than moral support, your editor wishes to extend good wishes to our Canadian friends, on behalf of the entire U.S. Party, and wishes the best of luck to LPC's Chairman Pro-Tem, Marshall Bruce Evoy (I know what it's like, being in his position).
LP NEWS is published bi-monthly by the National Office of the Libertarian Party. Items of interest to LP members are welcome. David F. Nolan, Editor. Subscription:$5/12 issues