A provocative take on politics and culture from a skeptical, libertarian point of view

Location: Long Island, New York, United States

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Pardon New Yorkers, Governor Pataki

Gov. Pataki will issue no holiday clemencies before he leaves office. The Libertarian Party of New York urges Pataki to reconsider and to pardon all drug offenders who have not been convicted of crimes against persons or their property. Gov. Pataki can demonstrate that he believes in justice by correcting the error of his predecessors. Real reform would be to repeal the Rockefeller drug laws, but clemency mitigates the injustice and harm they do. If Pataki won't act while he tests the GOP presidential waters, we must hope for better from Governor-elect Spitzer. After all, he endlessly proclaims that on Day One, everything changes. Let him prove it.

I am not terribly optimistic that Spitzer will be any better than Pataki. Spitzer opposes medical marijuana legalization which even the Christian Coalition endorsed. Spitzer spits on the suffering of those who would benefit from using medical marijuana to alleviate their symptoms.

Our 2006 Libertarian gubernatorial candidate John Clifton is a Queens social worker and former drug abuse counselor who advocates drug legalization. We do not advocate drug use. We advocate drug legalization becuase we advocate individual liberty, free markets and personal responsibility.

Richard Cooper, Chair Libertarian Party of New York

Monday, December 18, 2006

Legalize Santa's Dollar Van For Hire

Libertarian Party of NY -- Press Release -- Legalize Santa's Dollar Van For Hire



New York City, 12/18/06 “New York City would harass Santa if he carried passengers for hire in his sleigh,” says Libertarian Party of New York Chair Richard Cooper. Queens commuter and the 2006 Libertarian gubernatorial candidate John Clifton challenges the City authorities. “O Municipal Pharaoh, just let thy commuters go.” To reduce congestion, especially bad as Christmas approaches, the Libertarians urge that the City rely on free markets in transportation by abolition of the taxicab medallion system and legalization of the so-called gypsy cabs and dollar vans. These commuter vans, also known as jitneys, ply regular routes, competing with each other and the city-owned buses.

John Clifton is a social worker in Queens who champions free markets in transportation and puts his money where his mouth is. He rides the dollar vans and uses gypsy cabs, like many other minority inner-city residents ill-served by the regulated and tax-supported welfare state transit system. Clifton declares “The City calls it stealing when it loses passengers to the vans. Does Burger King “steal” revenue when it competes with McDonald’s? Busy outer-borough commuters want better service than that provided by the MTA.”

Cooper adds, “Urban, rural or suburban the best solutions and hope for Americans can be found with Libertarians. We stand for individual liberty, free markets and personal responsibility in order to promote a society that enjoys more justice, abundance, and peace.”

Additional information: The Institute for Justice has gone to court to defend commuter vans in New York City from the bureaucrats. The Reason Foundation and Heartland Institute have published studies on the subject of free enterprise in transit.