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Encouraging and Informative Libertarian Videos

January 5th, 2008

After reading about Ron Paul’s 10 percent returns in the Iowa caucuses today, I am beginning to see some encouraging signs that his campaign may be able to bring libertarian ideas into the American mainstream. While browsing through one of my favorite libertarian forums, someone posted a link to what is probably the best Ron Paul interview that I have seen to date.

The interview was conducted by Bill Moyers from the PBS television network and is refreshingly free of blatant bias, forced soundbytes, snide comments, and all of the other marginalizing tactics that have become commonplace in most mainstream media outlets. It runs 22 minutes long and includes a readable transcript for those of you who may not be able to hear the audio and are looking for a closed captioning option. There were a few good points brought up in the video that I am pleased to see are finally being discussed:

  1. Near the beginning of the segment, Bill Moyers actually brought up the fact that Fox News excluded Ron Paul from one of the recent debates, and that Fox never gave any explanation for this. However, he is being included in the ABC debates.
  2. Ron Paul was able to explain that libertarianism is inherently anti-racist because it sees people as individuals as opposed to members of a collective group. One of the defining characteristics of all forms of racism is that they attempt to categorize people into separate groups, in this case by race. Libertarianism does not categorize people by race or any other group label, but instead upholds the rights of the individual, usually in opposition to the power of the State.
  3. Near the end, there was some good discussion about the problems with the two-party system, and the obvious inconsistency of the United States invading (or substantially interfering with) other countries in the name of imposing “democracy” on them, while at the same time we do not really have democracy in the U.S., as anyone who gets involved with independent candidates or third party efforts soon realizes.

Meanwhile, Michael Hampton of Homeland Stupidity fame has been busy collecting video footage of the ongoing events at this year’s New Hampshire Liberty Forum in Nashua, New Hampshire. He managed to get some good coverage of the opening ceremony, which featured a few different speakers and is approximately 1 hour, 25 minutes long. Although I actually watched the whole thing, I found the first part of it rather boring compared to the presentation called “Sticking it to statism” by Sharon Harris from the Advocates for Self-Government. Her speech comes in around the 36 minute mark in the video, and is definitely worth listening to if you are interested in the marketing of libertarian ideas and how this might be accomplished in a society that seems to be addicted to the cult of the omnipotent State (i.e., large, pervasive government).









She talks about what it will take to make libertarian ideas “sticky” in the minds of the general public by studying six major characteristics that are common to many other ideas that have become popular in the past. Some of these things present challenges to most libertarians, particularly in the areas of appealing to concrete versus intuitive thinkers, and communicating with people who understand things in terms of emotions or feelings as opposed to those who use logic and analytical thinking.

Michael Hampton seemed to be impressed by this segment and mentioned that it has inspired him to change the way he will write at Homeland Stupidity so that he can hopefully connect with a larger group of people and introduce them to the idea of real liberty. Meanwhile, he is still gathering and editing footage of other events from the Liberty Forum, including Ron Paul’s closing speech, so there may be more videos coming that I can add to this post over the next few days.


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