A Call for More Libertarian Experts in North Carolina

by Joshua D. Glawson
LPNC Strategic Communications Adviser

The Libertarian Party of North Carolina needs specialists and those willing to speak if we are to grow as a party and as an influential organization in the state.

On January 27, 2024, I attended the John Locke Foundation’s Carolina Liberty Conference in Raleigh, North Carolina. 

I was sad to see there were very few outright libertarians speaking, and the liberty-light event was dominated by Republicans, conservatives, and conservatarians.  

Although I think highly of the John Locke Foundation, overall, and I believe they genuinely help to promote liberty in North Carolina and beyond, I have some concerns after attending this conference. 

During the event, the John Locke Foundation took a straw poll on various political topics. The results of the poll reflected a dominant government approach to each category and politicians that fall in line with such interventionism. 

A couple of the questions and results:

  • Question: “Should North Carolina allow for the development of casinos outside of tribal lands?”
    • Results: 45.2% said, “No;” 36.5% said, “Yes;” 20.2% said, “Undecided.” (I guess some people decided to vote more than once, with results equaling 101.9%)
  • Question: “If the primary election were held today, which candidate would you support to be GOP nominee for President of the United States?”
    • Results: 53.3% said, “Donald Trump;” 34.3% said, “Nikki Haley;” 6.7% said, “Undecided;” 4.8% said, “Ron DeSantis;” <1% said, “I do not plan to vote in the GOP primary;” and, <1% said, “Ron Paul.” 

Interestingly, almost every question asked in the poll was focused on the GOP and conservative talking points. 

Ten out of 14 questions asked directly about GOP candidates and none involved other political parties. 

If the conference is about liberty, one would naturally think there would be more liberty-related questions and results rather than a Trump bandwagon cloaked in the name of Liberty. 

Here Lies the Problem

The John Locke Carolina Liberty Conference is a prime example of why Libertarians should be more active in educating the public and being politically active, as Republicans, conservatives, and conservatarians butcher the name of liberty for their causes.

Their dominance over liberty is why much of the public is ignorant of the philosophy, politics, and economics of Libertarianism. Instead, much of the public, unfortunately, think Libertarians are a political extension of Republicans, conservatives, and conservatarians. 

In the essay Political Value Structures of the United States of America I discuss the hierarchical values of the four main political parties in the U.S.

In this essay, it is noted that Republicans and conservatives tend to use the guise of liberty to promote their own ideas of government authority over the individual, markets, and [political opponents] alike. Overall, Republicans believe that the government should do more for their causes at the expense of individual rights, liberty, and markets.

Out-of-State Pseudo-Libertarian Speakers 

The event had two libertarian-esque speakers present. These included William Ruger - President of the American Institute for Economic Research (AIER), and Scott Lincicome - Vice President of General Economics & Trade at the Cato Institute. 

Now, before you think this is just another example of libertarian infighting deciding who is and who is not a real libertarian, hear me out.

When Lincicome provided his lackluster yawner of a presentation, he alluded that more government intervention was the solution to problems with politicians and their meddling in markets and the lives of individuals without providing additional protections for the individual or markets.  

Even worse was when Ruger presented. Paraphrasing until the video is released, if they dare to post it, Ruger stated that free trade does not promote peace, and free trade for promoting peace is a myth that people have believed since the 1700-1800s. Even more frustrating is that he did not substantiate such an audacious claim, as he paid homage to Trump’s stance against trade with China at the expense of markets and the individual.

Libertarian Party of North Carolina

If Libertarians are to build a movement that relinquishes the death grips of the government over the lives of peaceful individuals and civil markets, while maintaining the truth of our message, we need more libertarian minds writing, speaking, and presenting on related topics. Not only for the sake of the Libertarian Party but more importantly for the lives of individuals and markets in North Carolina and beyond.    

If you are an expert in a particular field such as police reform, philosophy, history, taxes, entrepreneurship, housing, medical field, sound money, law, asset forfeiture, the US Constitution, NC Constitution, guns, free speech, filing FOIAs, or anything else, there’s likely an opportunity to have your work read and your voice heard.

The Libertarian Party of North Carolina is actively working on coordinating more opportunities to publish and present around the state, and we need your help.

If you are like me and tired of Republicans, conservatives, and conservatarians abusing the name of liberty to promote their own warped causes at the expense of free or unhampered markets and peaceful individuals in North Carolina, we need you.

We have a team ready to help you grow and excel. Even if that means speaking at a John Locke Foundation event, or any other, we need to keep our voices from being drowned out by Republicans, conservatives, and conservatarians.

Are you ready to climb out of the stagnant echo chamber and into the world of action?

Joshua D. Glawson is Content Manager for MoneyMetals.com and a writer and speaker in the Liberty Movement. He has been active with the Libertarian Party of California since 2015. He now resides in his home state of North Carolina. Check him out at Home - Joshua D. Glawson (joshuadglawson.com)

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