Wednesday, September 22, 2004

Michael Badnarik at Slashdot

Slashdot has conducted an interview with Michael Badnarik, the Libertarian candidate for President. It basically sums up all the things that are wrong with the current Libertarian party. What do I mean? Well let me show you.

Badnarik is asked how we can improve the voting system to be more inclusive of third parties. His response is:
Personally, I prefer Approval Voting. In this method, each voter can select as many candidates as he likes -- he can vote for all the candidates whom he can live with. All of the votes are counted, and the candidate with the most votes wins.
So basically if I vote for 6 people under this system I have 6 times as many votes as someone who only votes for one. This is not a system where everyone has an equal or equivalent vote.

On the movement of both parties toward the center:
All I can tell the "lesser of two evils" folks is that if they keep voting for evil, they'll keep getting evil.
The problem here is that there is not such thing as a good candidate. If you are voting on a political representative you will not agree with everything. You will always be voting for the lesser of two evils and the founding fathers even recognized this in the writing of the revolutionary period like Common Sense.

He goes on about repealing the PATRIOT Act in its entirety. Which is stupid since even the ACLU says that the majority of the PATRIOT Act is simply government reorganization and is neutral to civil liberties. Badnarik either hasn't bothered to inform himself on this issue or is an idiot.

Speaking of being an idiot, here is a choice piece on his corporate reforms:
A market in which single proprietorships and partnerships must compete against what are essentially mini-branches of government, with all the attendant privileges and immunities, isn't a free market. It's a rigged game. ... Stockholders are owners, and should be liable for the consequences of that ownership like any other owners.
That's right, all corporations are bad because they are legal government constructs to shield shareholders from liability. So what we should do is reduce corporations to jointly controlled proprietorships. Lets destroy the most significant legal and financial construct in history, because Mikey doesn't like it.

Lastly lets look an nuclear proliferation:
Pakistan and India have a history of 50 years of conflict. They're both nuclear powers. Yet they haven't used those arms. Israel has nuclear weapons, is surrounded by enemies and has had to fight for its very survival, yet has not used them.
Israel has never lost a war. That's why they haven't used them. Similarly Pakistan and India haven't fought a war since they became nuclear powers.

To be fair he does come out in favor of the electoral college and privatizing education. He also has some intelligent commentary on intellectual property and the effect of technological change.

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