Friday, June 27, 2008

"Libertarian" Barr panders to racists and bigots.

This blog has argued that the reason Barr, Viguerie and other conservatives were trying to take over the (formerly) Libertarian Party was to turn it into a vehicle to attack the Republicans for nominating McCain. They want to strip votes away from McCain on the Right so that he will lose. This, they hope, will bring back the dominance that the far Right previously held in the party, but which they lost out to the neo-cons.

In other words their goal is NOT to build the (formerly) Libertarian Party but to use the party as a means of taking over the Republican Party. The LP is but a tool for their use, which shows the naivety of those Libertarians who argued that having Barr lead the ticket “would build the party”. Of course to accomplish that goal Barr can’t really run as a Libertarian. He doesn’t want the libertarian vote, he wants the conservative vote.

And one result is that we know have the spectacle of a Libertarian candidate playing up immigrant-bashing to pander to the racists that permeate the Right.

Barr just sent out a fund-raiser using “border security” as the key. Border security is the current Right-wing hysteria, the crisis that they use to try to terrify people into supporting them. Terrify the public with some monster and you can rally the villagers into a mob that you can run in front of so as to pretend you are the leader. And, since Barr has not been hesitant to climb into bed with open racists in the past, this sort of pandering comes naturally to him.

Barr sent out a fund-raiser for his campaign about the “crisis” of “BORDER SECURITY”. (Capitalization his own -- it’s scarier that way.) And he trashed the somewhat decent “Comprehensive Immigration Reform” bill that the racist Right managed to defeat a year ago.

Now, please note that Barr is playing a dishonest game of bait-and-switch. He starts out talking about the “crisis” of border security and then conflates that with being anti-immigration. The bill in question did not loosen up border “security” but tried to fix the immigration system that the conservatives have broken one piece at a time. In fact the reforms would have helped solve the “security” issue.

One reason we have millions of people who have crossed the borders illegally is because legal options don’t exist. Instead of pushing millions of people who want to work into illegally crossing we ought to be finding ways for them to enter legally. That would reduce the ability of the actual bad guys from hiding themselves among the millions who cross.

Consider how a real terrorist, who wants to cross illegally, would think. He’d find that its much easier to cross where tens of thousands of “decoys” are also crossing. If he crosses with five others his chance of detection is higher than if he crosses with 5,000. The conservatives, by shutting down legal entry, have actually made it easier to true criminals to enter illegally. Conservatives like to quote the law of unintended consequences but somehow they delude themselves into thinking it only applies to laws proposed by the Left.

Barr tries to scare people into donating to his unlibertarian Libertarian campaign by claiming there is a lack of “border security.” As we have seen that is rubbish. The government has ratcheted up the Big Brother methods necessary to “secure the border” significantly in recent years.

Just as Barr proved to be an easy patsy for the Patriot Act, scare the shit out the man and he caves in on liberty, he is proving to be a patsy for the Big Brother anti-immigration campaign. Exactly how does Mr. Barr think his anti-immigrant, border security, ideas will get implemented.

It won’t come about by making people more free. After terrorism the “border” scare is the main issue that is being used to justify massive state interventions into civil society. Barry rolled over for Bush and now he’s rolling over for the bigots. And when Barr roles over, for some reason, it is civil liberties that get screwed.

Of course, ten years down the road Barr can always have a conversion and apologize for his “errors” -- if it is convenient for his political career.

Barr paints McCain as evil, not for the many issues where McCain deserves to be attacked, but for one of the few issues where he is more libertarian than not --- immigration reform.

Barr’s entire letter was filled with lies, borderline bigotry, fear mongering, and calls for government action. It sounds just like the garbage that the far Right has been pushing for years. What it didn’t sound like was anything remotely resembling libertarianism. This is the sort of rot that the sell-outs in the LP have foisted on the party. Barr’s actions are understandable -- he’s just a sleazy politician. But what excuse do his point-men in the LP have for their disgusting, slimy actions?

What Barr’s letter has done is destroy the lie that he was spreading around in Denver that he would campaign as a libertarian. He isn’t.

Now, Barr will get more votes than the typical LP candidate and the morons will cheer that saying it vindicates their choice. But then running Hillary Clinton would have gotten even more votes if you catch my drift. Selling out libertarianism and pandering to the bigoted Right would win more votes. What it won’t do is further the cause of liberty but hinder it. The Libertarian Party has gone over to the dark side and deserves to die.

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