Archive for the ‘Bob Barr’ Category

POLITICO: Nader, Barr & Paul: ‘Told you so’

While the presidential campaigns of John McCain and Barack Obama have stepped gingerly around the financial crisis and the question of government intervention, third party candidates Bob Barr and Ralph Nader have shown no such compunction.

Instead they have embraced the market meltdown, viewing it as a rare opportunity to highlight bold economic positions and, perhaps as important, claim credit for sounding the early warning alarms.

“We’ve been hammering it,” said Shane Cory, Barr’s deputy campaign manager. “When this first came about with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, Bob was explaining, ‘When we bail out Fannie and Freddie, expect more to come.'”

Barr, the former Republican congressman from Georgia who is running as a Libertarian, now sends out press releases lambasting the administration for indulging in corporate welfare, festooned with headlines such as “I told you so.”

“This administration, supposedly devoted to free markets and fiscal responsibility, has bailed out the housing industry, the quasi-government mortgage companies Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the investment house Bear Stearns, and a leading insurer,” read a Sept. 17 statement. “And how will we pay for this ever-rising bill for corporate welfare?”

Barr boasts that he was a few weeks ahead of the curve, pointing to an Aug. 15 press release warning that the bailouts of Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and Bear Stearns would lead to more irresponsible behavior and more bailouts.

“The mere possibility of a bailout will discourage companies and markets from adjusting in the future,” said the release.

The Nader campaign asserts that the independent candidate’s prescience in predicting the current meltdown dates back more than a decade.

“Ralph has almost prophetically predicted over the last 15 years of deregulation, what the effects might be,” said Toby Heaps, a Nader spokesman. “When Clinton removed the need for banks to pay annually into the FDIC, [Nader] predicted the FDIC might be short on cash and taxpayers would need to bail it out.”

Nader, a longtime consumer advocate who ran for president in 2000 and 2004, also predicted that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were headed for a crisis in his 2000 campaign.

He has seized the opportunity this week to take credit for being ahead of the curve and also to contrast his proposals with those of McCain and Obama. Nader has issued a detailed 10-point plan with short- and long-term proposals ranging from imposing additional conditions on bailout recipients to making the Federal Reserve a Cabinet position that is accountable to Congress.

In an interview with Politico last week, Nader emphasized many of the same issues, calling the Federal Reserve “a government within government” that is unaccountable to the public or to democratic institutions. He also said that the current round of bailouts was worse than the Chrysler Corp. rescue of 1979 because it does not impose sufficient conditions on the companies or benefits to the government.

Nader is “not unequivocally opposed to bailouts, but he’s opposed to those without reciprocity,” explained Heaps. “For Chrysler, the government received stock warrants, so when the company recovered, government made a $400 million profit. What happens today is people bow to what big business asks for without conditions whatsoever. He’s opposed to unconditional bailouts like this one.”

Like Nader, Barr also diverges from the cautious positions expressed by McCain and Obama. There is no hedging whatsoever: He opposes any bailout or additional regulation.

“Barr supports letting the free market run its course,” said Cory.

Cory says that the campaign is seeing increased attention in Barr as a result.

“We’re getting more people signing up for the e-mail list, donations are up, our press releases are being carried more widely,” said Cory. And although major media appearances remain somewhat elusive, there has been a notable uptick.

The Nader campaign reports that it hasn’t been as fortunate.

“I have never in my life seen someone so in the sweet spot of a story and get so little coverage,” complained Heaps. “We’ve had some articles in small papers but nothing in the major media except a hit on Fox.”

The Nader experience stands in stark contrast to the surge in media interest in long-shot former Republican presidential contender Ron Paul, who ran in the GOP primary on a platform that strongly opposed deficit spending, called for abolishing the Federal Reserve, and issued dire predictions about the future of the U.S. economy.

Though he is no longer running for president, the crisis has sparked an unaccustomed media boomlet for Paul, who has made recent television appearances on CNN, MSNBC, Fox News and Fox Business.
Paul, like Nader, asserts that recent events prove the correctness of his economic philosophy. “He thinks this is a long-term crisis that has been unwinding since 1971,” said Jesse Benton, a Paul spokesman.

Paul shares Barr’s and Nader’s view that the government’s response has been inappropriate.

The bailouts “prop up a bad system,” Paul said on MSNBC Thursday afternoon. “All they’ve tried to do is patch up a system that is unworkable.”


Bob Barr was caught on record trying to dump the Democratic & Republican candidates off of the ballot. If we had an award for Enormous-Balls-of-Iron it would go to Barr for taking on the Texas party system.

Nevertheless, I was out of school on that day and I thought it worthy to recap some of the more interesting local headlines.

Barr Sues to Remove McCain, Obama From Ballot
WASHINGTON — Libertarian presidential nominee Bob Barr’s campaign filed suit Tuesday seeking to remove Republican John McCain and Democrat Barack Obama from the ballot in Texas, alleging that the two major candidates missed the deadline for officially filing to be on the ballot.

The lawsuit by the former Republican congressman from Georgia claims that neither McCain nor Obama met the requirement of Texas law that all candidates provide “written certification” of their nomination “before 5 p.m. on the 70th day before election day,” because neither had been formally nominated by their respective parties in time.

Barr Loses Bid to Halt Mailing of Ballots

In Austin on Thursday, Barr accompanied his attorney to request an emergency order from the Texas Supreme Court to stop the state from mailing absentee and military ballots, which is expected to start Saturday. (Barr’s attorney, Drew Shirley, is also the Libertarian nominee for a Texas Supreme Court seat.) The court denied that request by the end of the day.

West Virginia Secretary of State Discriminates Against Cynthia McKinney

BALLOT ACCESS NEWS- This year, the West Virginia Secretary of State ruled that Cynthia McKinney must pay a $2,500 filing fee to be on the general election ballot, even though the Secretary of State is not telling Barack Obama or John McCain that they must pay any fee to be on the November ballot. All three candidates are similarly situated. They are all the presidential nominees of a qualified party in West Virginia. The Mountain Party, which nominated McKinney in West Virginia, is the Green Party affiliate in that state. It has been ballot-qualified since 2000.

The Secretary of State’s rationale is that Barack Obama and John McCain already paid a $2,500 fee to be on the state’s presidential primary ballot (the Mountain Party did not hold a presidential primary) and therefore her ruling is just. However, the presidential primary ballot fee is totally independent of a fee for the general election ballot. This conclusion is buttressed by the fact that in 1976, the Secretary of State did not charge Jimmy Carter the then-fee of $2,000 to be on the November 1976 ballot. Carter did not run in the West Virginia presidential primary, so he never paid any filing fee at all. The only candidates in the Democratic West Virginia primary were Senator Robert Byrd and George Wallace. All the other Democratic presidential contenders stayed out of the West Virginia primary so as not to split the anti-Wallace vote.

Also the West Virginia Secretary of State did not charge a filing fee to Richard Nixon or George McGovern in 1972. Neither of them had run in a West Virginia presidential primary either, so neither of them paid any fee at all, all year long.

UPDATE: Addressing Bob Barr’s offer for Paul to be his running mate.

“Paul has not responded to the request, Davis said. Ike Hall, who coordinated Paul’s campaign in Georgia, called Barr’s invitation “terribly interesting,” but added that Paul made clear he has no intention of running as anything other than a Republican this year.

Hall called Barr’s decision to skip the Paul press conference “unfortunate. What Ron Paul is trying to do is, he’s not endorsing any other person. What he’s endorsing is an idea.”

More on the Third Party effect below:

The Green Party has been in alliance with the Libertarian Party on many issues, including election integrity and ballot access fairness,” McLarty said, adding that Barr “seemed petty and hostile to Cynthia McKinney in particular and the Green Party in general. They all disagree on a number of issues, no doubt about it. But it was the agreement that was important and Bob Barr brushed that aside.”

All four candidates — Barr, McKinney, Baldwin and Nader — apparently signed a statement from Paul pledging their support for limited government, personal liberties, bringing U.S. troops stationed abroad home, and for an investigation into the Federal Reserve.

While Paul ran a distant fourth in the Georgia presidential primary, carrying 2.9 percent of the vote, he has a devoted following and his endorsement has been sought by Barr and by Republican nominee John McCain.

Barr sent Paul a letter Tuesday asking him to be his vice presidential nominee. Barr already has a running mate, Wayne Root of Las Vegas. Root said in the letter he would step aside for Paul.

Paul has not responded to the request, Davis said. Ike Hall, who coordinated Paul’s campaign in Georgia, called Barr’s invitation “terribly interesting,” but added that Paul made clear he has no intention of running as anything other than a Republican this year.

Hall called Barr’s decision to skip the Paul press conference “unfortunate. What Ron Paul is trying to do is, he’s not endorsing any other person. What he’s endorsing is an idea.”

Texas Voters Seem to Have Only One Official Presidential Ballot : Libertarian Bob Barr

According to the Secretary of State, you have the choice to vote for Libertarian Bob Barr, an Anti-Real ID candidate and other write in candidates such as, Green Party nominee Cynthia McKinney.  

Presidential Candidates steeping in their own hype at the DNC and upcoming RNC appeared to miss the Texas filing deadline yesterday, August 26th. 

“Unless the state of Texas violates their own election laws, Congressman Barr will be the only presidential candidate on the ballot,” says Russell Verney, campaign manager for the Barr Campaign and the former campaign manager for Ross Perot. “Texas law makes no exceptions for missing deadlines.”

Well, maybe the other Presidential candidates didn’t really miss the deadline. Maybe they are just faking.  

According to an unnamed afterhours source, both Republican and Democratic parties have what is called a “placeholder ballot” until their party officially selects a candidate at their national convention.  If Barack Obama, presumptive nominee for the Democratic party, accepts the party’s nomination this week at the Democratic National Convention in Denver, CO,  the Texas Secretary of state will remove the dummy ballot and replace it with Barack Obama. 
Republicans will officiate their presumptive nominee John McCain at the Republican National Convention in St. Paul, MN next week and then remove their Texas dummy afterward.
The Barr campaign complained of longtime inequities and special rules for the top 2 parties.

“Republicans and Democrats make certain that third party candidates are held to ballot access laws, no matter how absurd or unreasonable,” says Verney. “Therefore, Republicans and Democrats should be held to the same standards.”

“We know all about deadlines,” says Verney. “We are up against them constantly in our fight to get on the ballot across the nation. When we miss deadlines, we get no second chances. This is a great example of how unreasonable deadlines chill democracy.”
Here is Barr describing another chilling example of  democracy gone south.

Barr Urges Congressional Action to Repeal

Rep. Bob Barr, small-government party prodigal returned, as Libertarian Presidential nominee cites he has been consistently in favor of a repeal of Real ID.

Unfortunately, skepticism naggs Libertarians who soured against a penitent Barr over his affirmative Patriot Act vote while he was a Republican Congressional leader. In an election where Constitutional mores are muffled by Corporate media censorship and cast aside in favor of “Homeland Security” by the Bush Administration; civil libertarians are exceptionally sensitive to any hint of losing ground.

Those who stopped watching OBAMA TV a.k.a CNN, NBC/MSNBC, ABC, CBS, FOX {You get it.} months ago for any peep on gains of Constitutional relevance may still have an eye out for any resurfacing of approaches to halt the massive attack on our country’s fundamental documents. 

“’September 11’ has become the catch-all excuse for virtually every proposed expansion of government power,” notes Bob Barr, the Libertarian Party nominee for president. “One example is a national identification card and data base, long desired by some in government, and which was mandated by legislation passed by the Congress in 2005 with the support of both Senators McCain and Obama. Although I was no longer in the Congress when this bad legislation was passed, I had vigorously opposed it in the years since it became law, just as I led the successful effort to rescind a previous mandate for a national ID card, ” says Barr of his opponents unfavorable voting record.

Those looking to Obama to uphold the Constitution should take account of the only sneak-preview they may get prior to the November election. He voted “Aye” for FISA. Which means we’ll have green energy solutions and the warrantless wire-tappings will continue with carte-blanche immunity for highly compensated Telecomm traitors. Only the greed of corporate whistleblowers can save us now.

He voted AYE for the Patriot Act and AYE for Real ID. Benefit of the doubt?

We’ll be checking in with the McCain camp for any radar regarding Real ID – even though it’s not really a war or economy issue. Maybe if we pretend its a taxation issue he’ll look.

Barr’s campaign release included an Executive Branch plan of action on Real ID.

“As president, I would submit legislation to repeal the law.  I also would use my authority as president to limit the law’s impact to the extent allowed by law—establishing privacy safeguards, extending compliance deadlines, and relaxing license requirements.  Protecting the people’s liberties and privacy is central to government’s role, not an afterthought – factors obviously not important to my opponents in both the Republican and Democratic Parties who supported the Real ID Act.”

While Libertarian Presidential Candidate, Bob Barr is vocal about his wishes to halt Real ID implementation, he added that keeping the welfare recipients from voting was on his list of priorities. The cognitive dissonance and conflicts between the two ideas are not necessarily obvious. Those affirming the latter, may slip a noose around their own necks if Real ID is given the go ahead for its disenfranchising power.

An enacted Real ID manifests not just as complete exposure of US citizen’s privacy and identity keys or as an irrelevant immigration solution, but as a potent voter disenfranchisement tool. This Spring the Supreme Court upheld Indiana’s demand for photo ID as a pre-requisite to vote.  If more states mimic this legislation, ID will predicate your right to vote.
Those at the bottom of the economic ladder, those booted unintentionally “off the grid” due to mental illness or due to imprisonment often do not have immediate access to their “breeder documents”- a birth certificate or Social Security card- qualifying them for ID.  As identity trends persist, more people without immediate access to key identity documents find themselves outside of resources. They may also find themselves outside of the law for failure to provide identity documents on demand for registration, probation or payment of fines.
In Michael Mechanic’s, IDENTITY THEFT article, Mother Jones reports repercussions for those without access to proper identity documents.
FOR NEW PAROLEE’S hoping to stay out of prison for good, scoring public assistance is crucial.  But few consider this obstacle: “You can’t get ID in this society anymore if you don’t have ID,”  says Amy Blank, a researcher at Rutgers University.  “If you wanta birth certificate, you need a driver’s license. If you want a driver’s license, you have to have a birth certificate and a Social Security card.  And to get a Social Security card, you have to have a driver’s license. It’s this crazy cycle.”
For those with proper ID, squarely on the right side of the law with financial ducks in a row, still more government mandated  hoop-jumping exercises are ahead.  Among the hotly opposed tenets of the Real ID Act is a mandate to submit citizenship documents to local DMV databases in order to receive a valid driver’s license or ID.  In essence, the database will be a national catalog of identity documentation.  
The Consequences of Enumeration 
VIDEO: IBM & The Holocaust
Government cataloging or enumeration of a nation based on identity, may be used for profiling people groups based on aspects of race, religion, locale and consumer habits. Consequenses for enumeration are documented in Edwin Black’s book, IBM & The Holocaust.