Cleaning out the notebook…

If you wonder why the national Libertarian Party is harder and harder to take seriously, consider this recent comment from LP National Committee member Wayne Allen Root:

“I think the important thing now is to make sure Obama is not elected,and that means in my mind, I would love for a libertarian like Gary Johnson the two-term governor of New Mexico would actually get elected President, but I think we all know that’s not going to happen so therefore it’s got to be Romney there is no choice.”

Root was the LP’s vice presidential nominee four years ago, so he’s not exactly a nobody in the party (even if he should be). He exposes the real problem with the LP. Everyone know that Libertarian Party candidates aren’t going to win, so they’re not entirely in agreement about what their purpose is. They’re schizophrenic. Are they a political party or an educational organization? Political parties exist to win elections. How many LP campaigns have you ever known of that were honestly run to win (with a halfway legit shot at winning)? I can’t think of any.

Root’s comments point to the contradiction of being a serious Libertarian if you want to make a difference in elections. If you want to influence the outcome of a campaign, about your only real option is to vote for one of the two major parties. So what good is the LP doing? I can’t figure that out. Even if I still believed in some form of limited coercive government, I don’t see any real purpose for the LP. Maybe you see one that I’m overlooking.

By the way, in a comment on a blog, Root tried to defend his advice to vote for Romney in the fall, but it still didn’t make any sense.

Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley has been promoting charter schools for the state lately, but his promotion effort leaves something to be desired. On a PR trip to New Orleans to visit charter schools, someone in the governor’s office apparently forgot to check the performance of the schools he was visiting. The state of Louisiana had ranked the three schools he visited with a C+, D+ and F. Oooops. Not exactly great models to emulate, it seems. Someone on the governor’s staff isn’t earning his salary by preventing him from doing stupid things.

Why do TV talking heads quote poll results as though they somehow determine truth? Have you noticed what I mean? On the occasions when I’m subjected to cable news — almost always when I’m in public — it seems as though I frequently hear reporters and newsreaders quote public opinion statistics as though they mean something. Polls can tell you something when it has to do with elections, but they’re irrelevant in determining what’s right or true. Somewhere along the way, this country fell in love with the idea of democracy so much that majority opinion is quoted as though it matters. It doesn’t. If 85 percent of the people don’t believe in gravity, so what? If 74 percent believe in Bigfoot or the Loch Ness Monster or whatever, so what? If you want to quote a statistic because it shows how absurd or crazy people are, that makes sense. To quote it respectfully — as though it means something — is insane.

After I had the April Fool’s Day piece about Mitt Romney and the Illuminati, I’ve noticed that my website is suddenly getting hits from people who are using search strings such as “mitt romney illuminati.” It’s hard to do satire when so many people already believe the parody.

A 15-year-old Amish boy and his father were in a mall. They were amazed by almost everything they saw, but especially by two shiny, silver walls that could move apart and then slide back together again.

The boy asked, ‘What is this, Father?’

The father (never having seen an elevator) responded, “Son, I have never seen anything like this in my life. I don’t know what it is.”

While the boy and his father were watching with amazement, a fat old lady in a wheelchair moved up to the moving walls and pressed a button. The walls opened, and the woman rolled between them into a small room. The walls closed and the boy and his father watched the small numbers above the walls light up sequentially.

They continued to watch until it reached the last number. Then the numbers began to light in the reverse order.
Finally, the walls opened up again and a gorgeous 24-year-old blond stepped out.

The father, not taking his eyes off the young woman, said quietly to his son, “Go get your mother.”

And, finally, here’s a thought I stole from Facebook friend Andy Daken. There’s a lot of truth in this:

“Education is free. Open a book at the library. Read more than a Twitter post on the internet. MIT posts all their lectures for free. Diplomas are not free. They are certifications that you jumped through enough hurdles. If you want an education, read. If you want a diploma, quit whining that it costs money. A diploma does not equal education.”