1992 Libertarian Party Platform
(12,479 words, 41 pages)
As Libertarians, we seek a world of liberty; a world in which all individualsare sovereign over their own lives, and no one is forced to sacrifice hisor her values for the benefit of others. We believe that respect for individualrights is the essential precondition for a free and prosperous world, thatforce and fraud must be banished from human relationships, and that onlythrough freedom can peace and prosperity be realized.
Consequently, we defend each person's right to engage in any activitythat is peaceful and honest, and welcome the diversity that freedom brings.The world we seek to build is one where individuals are free to follow theirown dreams in their own ways, without interference from government or anyauthoritarian power.
In the following pages we have set forth our basic principles and enumeratedvarious policy stands derived from those principles.
These specific policies are not our goal, however. Our goal is nothingmore nor less than a world set free in our lifetime, and it is to this endthat we take these stands.
STATEMENT OF PRINCIPLES
We, the members of the Libertarian Party, challenge the cult of the omnipotentstate and defend the rights of the individual.
We hold that all individuals have the right to exercise sole dominionover their own lives, and have the right to live in whatever manner theychoose, so long as they do not forcibly interfere with the equal right ofothers to live in whatever manner they choose.
Governments throughout history have regularly operated on the oppositeprinciple, that the State has the right to dispose of the lives of individualsand the fruits of their labor. Even within the United States, all politicalparties other than our own grant to government the right to regulate thelives of individuals and seize the fruits of their labor without their consent.
We, on the contrary, deny the right of any government to do these things,and hold that where governments exist, they must not violate the rightsof any individual: namely, (1) the right to life -- accordingly we supportthe prohibition of the initiation of physical force against others; (2)the right to liberty of speech and action -- accordingly we oppose all attemptsby government to abridge the freedom of speech and press, as well as governmentcensorship in any form; and (3) the right to property -- accordingly weoppose all government interference with private property, such as confiscation,nationalization, and eminent domain, and support the prohibition of robbery,trespass, fraud, and misrepresentation.
Since governments, when instituted, must not violate individual rights,we oppose all interference by government in the areas of voluntary and contractualrelations among individuals. People should not be forced to sacrifice theirlives and property for the benefit of others. They should be left free bygovernment to deal with one another as free traders; and the resultant economicsystem, the only one compatible with the protection of individual rights,is the free market.
I. INDIVIDUAL RIGHTS AND CIVIL ORDER
No conflict exists between civil order and individual rights. Both conceptsare based on the same fundamental principle: that no individual, group,or government may initiate force against any other individual, group, orgovernment.
1. FREEDOM AND RESPONSIBILITY
Members of the Libertarian Party do not necessarily advocate or condoneany of the practices our policies would make legal. Our exclusion of moralapproval and disapproval is deliberate: people's rights must be recognized;the wisdom of any course of peaceful action is a matter for the acting individual(s)to decide. Personal responsibility is discouraged by society routinely denyingthe people the opportunity to exercise it. Libertarian policies will createa society where people are free to make and learn from their own decisions.
The continuing high level of violent crime -- and the government's demonstratedinability to deal with it -- threatens the lives, happiness, and belongingsof Americans. At the same time, governmental violations of rights underminethe people's sense of justice with regard to crime. The appropriate wayto suppress crime is through consistent and impartial enforcement of lawsthat protect individual rights. Laws pertaining to "victimless crimes"should be repealed since such laws themselves violate individual rightsand also breed other types of crime. We applaud the trend toward privateprotection services and voluntary community crime control groups. We supportinstitutional changes, consistent with full respect for the rights of theaccused, that would permit victims to direct the prosecution in criminalcases.
3. VICTIMLESS CRIMES
Because only actions that infringe on the rights of others can properlybe termed crimes, we favor the repeal of all federal, state, and local lawscreating "crimes" without victims. In particular, we advocate:
a. the repeal of all laws prohibiting the production, sale, possession,or use of drugs, and of all medicinal prescription requirements for thepurchase of vitamins, drugs, and similar substances;
b. the repeal of all laws restricting or prohibiting the use or saleof alcohol, including the imposition of a minimum drinking age, and makingbartenders or hosts responsible for the behavior of customers and guests;
c. the repeal of all laws or policies authorizing stopping drivers withoutprobable cause to test for alcohol or drug use;
d. the repeal of all laws regarding consensual sexual relations, includingprostitution and solicitation, and the cessation of state oppression andharassment of homosexual men and women, that they, at last, be accordedtheir full rights as individuals;
e. the repeal of all laws regulating or prohibiting the possession, use,sale, production, or distribution of sexually explicit material, independentof "socially redeeming value" or compliance with "communitystandards";
f. the repeal of all laws regulating or prohibiting gambling;
g. the repeal of anti-racketeering statutes such as the Racketeer Influencedand Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO), which punish peaceful behavior --including insider trading in securities, sale of sexually explicit material,and nonviolent anti-abortion protests -- by freezing assets of the accusedand seizing assets of the accused or convicted; and
h. the repeal of all laws interfering with the right to commit suicideas infringements of the ultimate right of an individual to his or her ownlife.
We demand the use of executive pardon to free and exonerate all thosepresently incarcerated or ever convicted solely for the commission of these"crimes." We condemn the wholesale confiscation of property priorto conviction by the state that all too often accompanies police raids,searches, and prosecutions for victimless crimes.
Further, we recognize that, often, the Federal Government blackmailsstates which refuse to comply with these laws by withholding funds and weapplaud those states which refuse to be so coerced.
4. SAFEGUARDS FOR THE CRIMINALLY ACCUSED
Until such time as persons are proved guilty of crimes, they should beaccorded full respect for their individual rights. We are thus opposed toreduction of constitutional safeguards of the rights of the criminally accused.
We oppose labeling cases as "civil" strictly to avoid the dueprocess protections of criminal law and we further oppose governmental civiland criminal pretrial seizure of property for criminal offenses.
We oppose police officers using excessive force on the disorderly orthe criminally accused, handing out what they may consider to be instantpunishments on the streets, preventive detention, and no-knock laws. Instant-punishmentpolicies deprive the accused of important checks on government power --juries and the judicial process. We oppose any concept that some individualsare by nature second-class citizens who only understand instant punishmentand any claim that the police possess special insight into recognizing personsin need of punishment.
We support full restitution for all loss suffered by persons arrested,indicted, tried, imprisoned, or otherwise injured in the course of criminalproceedings against them that do not result in their conviction. When theyare responsible, government police employees or agents should be liablefor this restitution.
We call for a reform of the judicial system allowing criminal defendantsand civil parties to a court action a reasonable number of peremptory challengesto proposed judges, similar to their right under the present system to challengea proposed juror.
5. JUSTICE FOR THE INDIVIDUAL
The present system of criminal law is based almost solely on punishmentwith little concern for the victim. We support restitution for the victimto the fullest degree possible at the expense of the criminal or wrongdoer.
We oppose the prosecution of individuals for exercising their rightsof self-defense.
We oppose all "no-fault" insurance laws, which deprive thevictim of the right to recover damages from those responsible in the caseof injury. We also support the right of the victim to pardon the criminalor wrongdoer, barring threats to the victim for this purpose. We applaudthe growth of private adjudication of disputes by mutually acceptable judges.
We support a change in rape laws so that cohabitation will no longerbe a defense against a charge of rape.
We oppose the current practice of forced jury duty and favor all-volunteerjuries. In addition, we urge the assertion of the common-law right of juriesto judge not only the facts but also the justice of the law. In all casesto which the government is a party, the judge should be required to informthe jurors of their common law right to judge the law, as well as the facts,and to acquit a criminal defendant, and to find against the government ina civil trial, whenever they deem the law unjust or oppressive.
7. INDIVIDUAL SOVEREIGNTY
The only legitimate use of force is in defense of individual rights --life, liberty, and justly acquired property -- against aggression, whetherby force or fraud. This right inheres in the individual, who -- with hisor her consent -- may be aided by any other individual or group.
The right of defense extends to defense against aggressive acts of government.We favor an immediate end to the doctrine of "Sovereign Immunity"which ignores the primacy of the individual over the abstraction of theState, and holds that the State, contrary to the tradition of redress ofgrievances, may not be sued without its permission or held accountable forits actions under civil law.
8. GOVERNMENT AND MENTAL HEALTH
We oppose the involuntary commitment of any person to or involuntarytreatment in a mental institution.
We advocate an immediate end to the spending of tax money for any programof psychiatric, psychological, or behavioral research or treatment.
We favor an end to the acceptance of criminal defenses based on "insanity"or "diminished capacity" which absolve the guilty of their responsibilitywhen criminal intent is shown.
9. FREEDOM OF COMMUNICATION
We defend the rights of individuals to unrestricted freedom of speechand freedom of the press and guarantee the right of individuals to dissentfrom government itself. We recognize that full freedom of expression ispossible only as part of a system of full property rights. The freedom touse one's own voice; the freedom to hire a hall; the freedom to own a printingpress, a broadcasting station, or a transmission cable; the freedom to waveor burn one's own flag; and similar property-based freedoms are preciselywhat constitute freedom of communication. At the same time, we recognizethat freedom of communication does not extend to the use of other people'sproperty to promote one's ideas without the voluntary consent of the owners.
We oppose any abridgment of the freedom of speech through governmentcensorship, regulation or control of communications media, including, butnot limited to, laws concerning:
-- Obscenity, including "pornography", as we hold this to bean abridgment of liberty of expression despite claims that it instigatesrape or assault, or demeans and slanders women;
-- Reception and storage equipment, such as digital audio tape recordersand radar warning devices, and the manufacture of video terminals by telephonecompanies;
-- Electronic bulletin boards, communications networks, and other interactiveelectronic media as we hold them to be the functional equivalent of speakinghalls and printing presses in the age of electronic communications, andas such deserving of full freedom;
-- Electronic newspapers, electronic "Yellow Pages", and othernew information media, as these deserve full freedom.
-- Commercial speech or advertising.
We oppose speech codes at all schools that are primarily tax funded.Language that is deemed offensive to certain groups is not a cause for legalaction.
We favor the abolition of the Federal Communications Commission as wewould provide for free market ownership of airwave frequencies, deservingof full First Amendment protection.
We oppose government ownership or subsidy of, or funding for, any communicationsorganization.
We strongly oppose the government's burgeoning practice of invading newsrooms,or the premises of other innocent third parties, in the name of law enforcement.We further oppose court orders gagging news coverage of criminal proceedings-- the right to publish and broadcast must not be abridged merely for theconvenience of the judicial system. We deplore any efforts to impose thoughtcontrol on the media, either by the use of anti-trust laws, or by any othergovernment action in the name of stopping "bias."
Removal of all of these regulations and practices throughout the communicationsmedia would open the way to diversity and innovation. We shall not be satisfieduntil the First Amendment is expanded to protect full, unconditional freedomof communication.
10. FREEDOM OF RELIGION
We defend the rights of individuals to engage in (or abstain from) anyreligious activities that do not violate the rights of others. In orderto defend freedom, we advocate a strict separation of church and State.We oppose government actions that either aid or attack any religion. Weoppose taxation of church property for the same reason that we oppose alltaxation.
We condemn the attempts by parents or any others -- via kidnappings,conservatorships, or instruction under confinement -- to force childrento conform to their parents' or any others' religious views. Governmentharassment or obstruction of unconventional religious groups for their beliefsor non-violent activities must end.
11. THE RIGHT TO PROPERTY
There is no conflict between property rights and human rights. Indeed,property rights are the rights of humans with respect to property, and assuch, are entitled to the same respect and protection as all other humanrights.
Moreover, all human rights are property rights too. Such rights as thefreedom from involuntary servitude as well as the freedom of speech andthe freedom of press are based on self ownership. Our bodies are our propertyevery bit as much as is justly acquired land or material objects.
We further hold that the owners of property have the full right to control,use, dispose of, or in any manner enjoy, their property without interference,until and unless the exercise of their control infringes the valid rightsof others. We oppose all violations of the right to private property, libertyof contract, and freedom of trade done in the name of national security.We also condemn current government efforts to regulate or ban the use ofproperty in the name of aesthetic values, riskiness, moral standards, cost-benefitestimates, or the promotion or restriction of economic growth.
We demand an end to the taxation of privately owned real property, whichactually makes the State the owner of all lands and forces individuals torent their homes and places of business from the State. We condemn attemptsto employ eminent domain to municipalize sports teams or to try to forcethem to stay in their present location.
Where property, including land, has been taken from its rightful ownersby the government or private action in violation of individual rights, wefavor restitution to the rightful owners. Specifically, we call for thereturn of lands taken from Americans of Japanese ancestry during World WarII.
12. PROTECTION OF PRIVACY
The individual's right to privacy, property, and right to speak or notto speak should not be infringed by the government. The government shouldnot use electronic or other means of covert surveillance of an individual'sactions or private property without the consent of the owner or occupant.Correspondence, bank and other financial transactions and records, doctors'and lawyers' communications, employment records, and the like should notbe open to review by government without the consent of all parties involvedin those actions.
We support the protections provided by the Fourth Amendment and opposeany government use of search warrants to examine or seize materials belongingto innocent third parties. We also oppose police roadblocks aimed at randomly,and without probable cause, testing drivers for intoxication and policepractices to stop mass transit vehicles and search passengers without probablecause.
So long as the National Census and all federal, state, and other governmentagencies' compilations of data on an individual continue to exist, theyshould be conducted only with the consent of the persons from whom the datais sought.
We oppose all proposed regulations of civilian research on encryptionmethods. We also oppose government classification of such research or requirementsthat deciphering methods be disclosed to the government.
If a private employer screens prospective or current employees via questionnaires,polygraph tests, urine tests for drugs, blood tests for AIDS, or other means,this is a condition of that employer's labor contracts. Such screening doesnot violate the rights of employees, who have the right to boycott suchemployers if they choose. Private contractual arrangements, including laborcontracts, must be founded on mutual consent and agreement in a societythat upholds freedom of association. On the other hand, we oppose any useof such screening by government or regulations requiring government contractorsto impose any such screening.
We oppose government regulations that require employers to provide healthinsurance coverage for employees, which often encourage unnecessary intrusionsby employers into the privacy of their employees. We oppose the issuanceby the government of an identity card, to be required for any purpose, suchas employment, voting, or border crossing.
We further oppose the nearly universal requirement for use of the SocialSecurity Number as a personal identification code, whether by governmentagencies or by intimidation of private companies by governments.
13. GOVERNMENT SECRECY
We condemn the government's use of secret classifications to keep fromthe public information that it should have. We favor substituting a systemin which no individual may be convicted for violating government secrecyclassifications unless the government discharges its burden of proving thatthe publication:
a. violated the right of privacy of those who have been coerced intorevealing confidential or proprietary information to government agents,or
b. disclosed defensive military plans so as to materially impair thecapabilities to respond to attack.
It should always be a defense to such prosecution that information divulgedshows that the government has violated the law.
14. INTERNAL SECURITY AND CIVIL LIBERTIES
We call for abolition of secret police, such as the Central IntelligenceAgency. We support Congressional investigation of criminal activities ofthe CIA and FBI and of wrongdoing by other governmental agencies.
We support the abolition of the subpoena power as used by Congressionalcommittees against individuals or firms. We oppose any efforts to revivethe House Internal Security Committee or its predecessor the House Un-AmericanActivities Committee, and call for the destruction of its files on privateindividuals and groups. We also call for the abolition of the Senate Subcommitteeon Internal Security.
15. THE RIGHT TO KEEP AND BEAR ARMS
The Bill of Rights recognizes that an armed citizenry is essential toa free society. We affirm the right to keep and bear arms and oppose alllaws at any level of government restricting, regulating, or requiring theownership, manufacture, transfer, or sale of firearms or ammunition. Weoppose all laws requiring registration of firearms or ammunition. We alsooppose any government efforts to ban or restrict the use of tear gas, "mace,"or other self-protection devices. We further oppose all attempts to banweapons or ammunition on the grounds that they are risky or unsafe.
We support repeal of the National Firearms Act of 1934 and the FederalGun Control Act of 1968, and we demand the immediate abolition of the Bureauof Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms.
We favor the repeal of laws banning the concealment of weapons or prohibitingpocket weapons. We also oppose the banning of inexpensive handguns ("Saturdaynight specials").
16. CONSCRIPTION AND THE MILITARY
Recognizing that registration is the first step toward full conscription,we oppose all attempts at compulsory registration of any person and allschemes for automatic registration through government invasions of the privacyof school, motor vehicle, or other records. We call for the abolition ofthe still-functioning elements of the Selective Service System, believingthat impressment of individuals into the armed forces is involuntary servitude.We call for the destruction of all files in computer-readable or hard-copyform compiled by the Selective Service System. We also oppose any form ofnational service, such as a compulsory youth labor program.
We oppose adding women to the pool of those eligible for and subjectto the draft, not because we think that as a rule women are unfit for combat,but because we believe that this step enlarges the number of people subjectedto government tyranny.
We support the immediate and unconditional exoneration of all who havebeen accused or convicted of draft evasion, desertion from the military,and other acts of resistance to such transgressions as imperialistic warsand aggressive acts of the military. Members of the military should havethe same right to quit their jobs as other persons.
We call for the end of the Defense Department practice of dischargingarmed forces personnel for homosexual conduct. We further call for retractionof all less-than-honorable discharges previously assigned for such reasonsand deletion of such information from military personnel files.
We recommend the repeal of the Uniform Code of Military Justice and therecognition and equal protection of the rights of armed forces members.This will thereby promote morale, dignity, and a sense of justice withinthe military.
We hold that human rights should not be denied or abridged on the basisof nationality. We condemn massive roundups of Hispanic Americans and othersby the federal government in its hunt for individuals not possessing requiredgovernment documents. We strongly oppose all measures that punish employerswho hire undocumented workers. Such measures repress free enterprise, harassworkers, and systematically discourage employers from hiring Hispanics.
We welcome all refugees to our country and condemn the efforts of U.S.officials to create a new "Berlin Wall" which would keep themcaptive. We condemn the U.S. government's policy of barring those refugeesfrom our country and preventing Americans from assisting their passage tohelp them escape tyranny or improve their economic prospects.
Undocumented non-citizens should not be denied the fundamental freedomto labor and to move about unmolested. Furthermore, immigration must notbe restricted for reasons of race, religion, political creed, age, or sexualpreference.
We therefore call for the elimination of all restrictions on immigration,the abolition of the Immigration and Naturalization Service and the BorderPatrol, and a declaration of full amnesty for all people who have enteredthe country illegally. We oppose government welfare and resettlement paymentsto non-citizens just as we oppose government welfare payments to all otherpersons.
Individual rights should not be denied, abridged, or enhanced at theexpense of other people's rights, on the basis of sex, wealth, race, color,creed, age, national origin, personal habits, political preference, or sexualorientation by the laws at any level of government. Protective labor laws,Selective Service laws, and other laws that violate rights selectively shouldbe repealed entirely rather than being extended to all groups.
Discrimination imposed by the government has brought disruption in normalrelationships of people, set neighbor against neighbor, created gross injustices,and diminished human potential. Anti-discrimination enforced by the governmentis the reverse side of the coin, and will for the same reasons create thesame problems. Consequently, we oppose any government attempts to regulateprivate discrimination, including discrimination in employment, housing,and privately owned so-called public accommodations. The right to tradeincludes the right not to trade -- for any reasons whatsoever.
19. WOMEN'S RIGHTS AND ABORTION
We hold that individual rights should not be denied or abridged on thebasis of sex. We call for repeal of all laws discriminating against women,such as protective labor laws and marriage or divorce laws which deny thefull rights of men and women. We oppose all laws likely to impose restrictionson free choice and private property or to widen tyranny through reversediscrimination.
Recognizing that each person must be the sole and absolute owner of hisor her own body, we support the right of women to make a personal choiceregarding the termination of pregnancy. We oppose the undermining of theright via laws requiring consent of the pregnant woman's parents, consentof the prospective father, waiting periods, or compulsory provision of indoctrinationon medical risks or fetal development. However, we also oppose all tax fundingfor abortions. It is particularly harsh to force someone who believes thatabortion is murder to pay for another's abortion. We also condemn state-mandatedabortions.
20. FAMILY LIFE
We support protection of the integrity of families and households ascontractual institutions against government intrusion and interference.Such governmental interference has undermined the value of families andhouseholds as cultural institutions of love, nurture, companionship, kinship,and personal development by forcing them to conform to a rigid, inflexibledesign. Moreover, we condemn the usurpation by government through moralslaws, government welfare programs, and government schools, of activitieslong carried on by families and households. We further accuse governmentof designing educational programs that place civic and moral education underthe control of politicians and of designing welfare laws that destroy familiesand households.
21. CHILDREN'S RIGHTS
Children are human beings and, as such, have all the rights of humanbeings.
We recognize that children who have not reached maturity need guardiansto secure their rights and to aid in the exercise of those rights. We holdthat guardianship belongs to those who most love and value the child andhis or her development, normally the parents and never the state.
We oppose all laws that empower government officials to seize childrenand make them "wards of the state" or, by means of child laborlaws and compulsory education, to infringe on their freedom to work or learnas they choose. We oppose all legally created or sanctioned discriminationagainst (or in favor of) children, just as we oppose government discriminationdirected at any other artificially defined sub-category of human beings.Specifically we oppose ordinances that outlaw adults-only apartment housing.
We also support the repeal of all laws establishing any category of crimesapplicable to children for which adults would not be similarly vulnerable,such as curfew, smoking, and alcoholic beverage laws, and other status offenses.Similarly, we favor the repeal of "stubborn child" laws and lawsestablishing the category of "persons in need of supervision."We call for an end to the practice in many states of jailing children notaccused of any crime. We seek the repeal of all "children's codes"or statutes which abridge due process protections for young people. We furtherfavor the abolition of the juvenile court system, so that juveniles willbe held fully responsible for their crimes.
Whenever parents or other guardians are unable or unwilling to care fortheir children, those guardians have the right to seek other persons whoare willing to assume guardianship, and children have the right to seekother guardians who place a higher value on their lives. Accordingly, weoppose all laws that impede these processes, notably those restricting privateadoption services or those forcing children to remain in the custody oftheir parents against their will.
Children should always have the right to establish their maturity byassuming administration and protection of their own rights, ending dependencyupon their parents or other guardians and assuming all the responsibilitiesof adulthood.
22. AMERICAN INDIAN RIGHTS
The major factors underlying the unconscionable plight of America's Indiansmay be summarized as follows: (1) the unresolved complexity of dual nationalcitizenship; (2) the attrition of reservation lands and abridgement of Indianrights to remaining properties; (3) the subjugation of individual Indiansto the Bureau of Indian Affairs and tribal governmental authority; and (4)various federal commitments to provide the tribes with health, education,and welfare benefits "forever" in exchange for expropriated lands.
We favor the following remedies, respectively: (1) individual Indiansshould be free to select their citizenship, if any, and tribes should beallowed to choose their level of autonomy, up to absolute sovereignty; (2)Indians should have their just property rights restored, including rightsof easement, access, hunting and fishing; (3) the Bureau of Indian Affairsshould be abolished and tribal members allowed to decide the extent andnature of their government, if any; and (4) negotiations should be undertakento exchange various otherwise unclaimed and unowned federal properties forany and all remaining governmental obligations to the tribes.
We further advocate holding fully liable those responsible for any andall damages which have resulted from authorization of, or engagement in,resource development on reservation lands, including damages done by carelessdisposal of uranium tailings and other mineral wastes.
23. THE WAR ON DRUGS
The so-called "War on Drugs" is a grave threat to individualliberty, to domestic order and to peace in the world; furthermore, it hasprovided a rationale by which the power of the state has been expanded torestrict greatly our right to privacy and to be secure in our homes.
We call for the repeal of all laws establishing criminal or civil penaltiesfor the use of drugs and of "anti-crime" measures restrictingindividual rights to be secure in our persons, homes, and property, or limitingour rights to keep and bear arms.
II. TRADE AND THE ECONOMY
Because each person has the right to offer goods and services to otherson the free market, and because government interference can only harm suchfree activity, we oppose all intervention by government into the area ofeconomics. The only proper role of existing governments in the economicrealm is to protect property rights, adjudicate disputes, and provide alegal framework in which voluntary trade is protected.
Efforts to forcibly redistribute wealth or forcibly manage trade areintolerable. Government manipulation of the economy creates an entrenchedprivileged class -- those with access to tax money -- and an exploited class-- those who are net taxpayers.
1. THE ECONOMY
Government intervention in the economy imperils both the personal freedomand the material prosperity of every American. We therefore support thefollowing specific immediate reforms:
a. drastic reduction of both taxes and government spending; b. an endto deficit budgets;
c. a halt to inflationary monetary policies;
d. the removal of all governmental impediments to free trade; and
e. the repeal of all controls on wages, prices, rents, profits, production,and interest rates.
Since we believe that all persons are entitled to keep the fruits oftheir labor, we oppose all government activity that consists of the forciblecollection of money or goods from individuals in violation of their individualrights. Specifically, we:
a. recognize the right of any individual to challenge the payment oftaxes on moral, religious, legal, or constitutional grounds;
b. oppose all personal and corporate income taxation, including capitalgains taxes;
c. support the repeal of the Sixteenth Amendment, and oppose any increasein existing tax rates and the imposition of any new taxes;
d. support the eventual repeal of all taxation; and
e. support a declaration of unconditional amnesty for all those individualswho have been convicted of, or who now stand accused of, tax resistance.
As an interim measure, all criminal and civil sanctions against tax evasionshould be terminated immediately.
We oppose as involuntary servitude any legal requirements forcing employersor business owners to serve as tax collectors for federal, state, or localtax agencies.
We oppose any and all increases in the rate of taxation or categoriesof taxpayers, including the elimination of deductions, exemptions, or creditsin the spurious name of "fairness," "simplicity," oralleged "neutrality to the free market." No tax can ever be fair,simple, or neutral to the free market.
In the current fiscal crisis of states and municipalities, default ispreferable to raising taxes or perpetual refinancing of growing public debt.
3. INFLATION AND DEPRESSION
We recognize that government control over money and banking is the primarycause of inflation and depression. Individuals engaged in voluntary exchangeshould be free to use as money any mutually agreeable commodity or item,such as gold coins denominated by units of weight. We therefore call forthe repeal of all legal tender laws and of all compulsory governmental unitsof account. We support the right to private ownership of and contracts forgold. We favor the elimination of all government fiat money and all governmentminted coins. All restrictions upon the private minting of coins shouldbe abolished so that minting will be open to the competition of the freemarket.
We favor free-market banking. We call for the abolition of the FederalReserve System, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, the National BankingSystem, and all similar national and state interventions affecting bankingand credit. Our opposition encompasses all controls on the rate of interest.We also call for the abolition of the Federal Home Loan Bank System, theResolution Trust Corporation, the National Credit Union Administration,the National Credit Union Central Liquidity Facility, and all similar nationaland state interventions affecting savings and loan associations, creditunions, and other depository institutions. There should be unrestrictedcompetition among banks and depository institutions of all types.
To complete the separation of bank and State, we favor the Jacksonianindependent treasury system, in which all government funds are held by thegovernment itself and not deposited in any private banks. The only furthernecessary check upon monetary inflation is the consistent application ofthe general protection against fraud to the minting and banking industries.Pending its abolition, the Federal Reserve System, in order to halt rampantinflation, must immediately cease its expansion of the quantity of money.As interim measures, we further support:
a. the lifting of all restrictions on branch banking;
b. the repeal of all state usury laws;
c. the removal of all remaining restrictions on the interest paid fordeposits;
d. the elimination of laws setting margin requirements on purchases andsales of securities;
e. the revocation of all other selective credit controls;
f. the abolition of Federal Reserve control over the reserves of non-memberbanks and other depository institutions; and
g. the lifting of the prohibition of domestic deposits denominated inforeign currencies.
4. FINANCE AND CAPITAL INVESTMENT
We call for the abolition of all regulation of financial and capitalmarkets. Specifically, we demand the abolition of the tyrannical Securitiesand Exchange Commission, of state "Blue Sky" laws which represssmall and risky capital ventures, and of all federal regulation of commoditymarkets. We oppose any attempts to ban or regulate such innovative financialdevices as investing in stock-market index futures.
We call for repeal of all laws based on the muddled concept of insidertrading. What should be punished is the theft of information or breach ofcontract to hold information in confidence, not trading on the basis ofvaluable knowledge. We support the right of third parties to make stockpurchase tender offers to stockholders over the opposition of entrenchedmanagement, and oppose all laws restricting such offers.
5. GOVERNMENT DEBT
We support the drive for a constitutional amendment requiring the nationalgovernment to balance its budget, and also support similar amendments torequire balanced state budgets. To be effective, a balanced budget amendmentshould provide:
a. that neither Congress nor the President be permitted to override thisrequirement;
b. that all off-budget items are included in the budget;
c. that the budget is balanced exclusively by cutting expenditures, andnot by raising taxes; and
d. that no exception be made for periods of national emergency.
The Federal Reserve should be forbidden to acquire any additional governmentsecurities, thereby helping to eliminate the inflationary aspect of thedeficit. Governments facing fiscal crises should always default in preferenceto raising taxes. At a minimum, the level of government should be frozen.
We condemn all coercive monopolies. We recognize that government is thesource of monopoly, through its grants of legal privilege to special interestsin the economy. In order to abolish monopolies, we advocate a strict separationof business and State.
"Anti-trust" laws do not prevent monopoly, but foster it bylimiting competition. We therefore call for the repeal of all "anti-trust"laws, including the Robinson-Patman Act which restricts price discounts,the Sherman Anti-Trust Act, and the Clayton Anti-Trust Act. We further callfor the abolition of the Federal Trade Commission and the anti-trust divisionof the Department of Justice.
We defend the right of individuals to form corporations, cooperatives,and other types of companies based on voluntary association. Laws of incorporationshould not include grants of monopoly privilege. In particular, we opposespecial limits on the liability of corporations for damages caused in noncontractualtransactions. We also oppose state or federal limits on the size of privatecompanies and on the right of companies to merge. We further oppose efforts,in the name of social responsibility, or any other reason, to expand federalchartering of corporations into a pretext for government control of business.
In order to achieve a free economy in which government victimizes noone for the benefit of any other, we oppose all government subsidies tobusiness, labor, education, agriculture, science, broadcasting, the arts,sports, or any other special interest. In particular, we condemn any effortto forge an alliance between government and business under the guise of"reindustrialization" or "industrial policy." The unrestrictedcompetition of the free market is the best way to foster prosperity. Wetherefore oppose any resumption of the Reconstruction Finance Corporation,or any similar plan that would force the taxpayer to subsidize or sustainany enterprise.
We call for the abolition of the Federal Financing Bank, the most importantnational agency subsidizing special interests with government loans. Wealso oppose all government guarantees of so-called private loans. Such guaranteestransfer resources to special interests as effectively as actual governmentexpenditures and, at the national level, exceed direct government loansin total amount. Taxpayers must never bear the cost of default upon government-guaranteedloans. All national, state, and local government agencies whose primaryfunction is to guarantee loans, including the Federal Housing Administration,the Rural Electrification Administration, and the Small Business Administration,should be abolished or privatized.
The loans of government-sponsored enterprises, even when not guaranteedby the government, constitute another form of subsidy. All such enterprises-- the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation, the Federal National MortgageAssociation, the Farm Credit Administration, and the Student Loan MarketingAssociation -- must either be abolished or completely privatized.
Relief or exemption from taxation or from any other involuntary governmentintervention, however, should not be considered a subsidy.
8. TARIFFS AND QUOTAS
Like subsidies, tariffs and quotas serve only to give special treatmentto favored interests and to diminish the welfare of other individuals. Themeasures also reduce the scope of contracts and understanding among differentpeoples. We therefore support abolition of all tariffs and quotas as wellas the Tariff Commission and the Customs Court.
9. PUBLIC UTILITIES
We advocate the termination of government-created franchise privilegesand governmental monopolies for such services as garbage collection, fireprotection, electricity, natural gas, cable television, telephone, or watersupplies. Furthermore, all rate regulation in these industries should beabolished. The right to offer such services on the market should not becurtailed by law.
10. UNIONS AND COLLECTIVE BARGAINING
We support the right of free persons to voluntarily establish, associatein, or not associate in, labor unions. An employer should have the rightto recognize, or refuse to recognize, a union as the collective bargainingagent of some, or all, of its employees.
We oppose government interference in bargaining, such as compulsory arbitrationor the imposition of an obligation to bargain. Therefore, we urge repealof the National Labor Relations Act, and all state Right-to-Work Laws whichprohibit employers from making voluntary contracts with unions. We opposeall government back-to-work orders as the imposition of a form of forcedlabor.
Government-mandated waiting periods for closure of factories or businesseshurt, rather than help, the wage-earner. We support all efforts to benefitworkers, owners, and management by keeping government out of this area.
Workers and employers should have the right to organize secondary boycottsif they so choose. Nevertheless, boycotts or strikes do not justify theinitiation of violence against other workers, employers, strike-breakers,and innocent bystanders.
III. DOMESTIC ILLS
Current problems in such areas as energy, pollution, health care delivery,decaying cities, and poverty are not solved, but are primarily caused, bygovernment. The welfare state, supposedly designed to aid the poor, is inreality a growing and parasitic burden on all productive people, and injures,rather than benefits, the poor themselves.
We oppose all government control of energy pricing, allocation, and production,such as that imposed by the Department of Energy, state public utility commissions,and state pro-rationing agencies. We oppose all government subsidies forenergy research, development, and operation.
We oppose all direct and indirect government participation in the nuclearenergy industry, including subsidies, research and development funds, guaranteedloans, waste disposal subsidies, and federal uranium enrichment facilities.The Nuclear Regulatory Commission should be abolished; full liability --not government agencies -- should regulate nuclear power. The Price-AndersonAct, through which the government limits liability for nuclear accidentsand furnishes partial payment at taxpayer expense, should be repealed. Nuclearenergy should be denationalized and the industry's assets transferred tothe private sector. Any nuclear power industry must meet the test of a freemarket.
We oppose any restriction on the use of alternative fuels.
We support abolition of the Department of Energy and the abolition ofits component agencies, without their transfer elsewhere in the government.We oppose the creation of any emergency mobilization agency in the energyfield, which would wield dictatorial powers in order to override normallegal processes. We oppose all government conservation schemes through theuse of taxes, subsidies, and regulation, as well as the dictated conversionof utilities and other industries to coal or any other fuel. We oppose anyattempt to give the federal government a monopoly over the importation ofoil, or to develop a subsidized government energy corporation whose privilegedstatus would be used as a yardstick for condemning private enterprise. Weoppose the "strategic storage" program, any attempt to compelnational self sufficiency in oil, any extension of cargo preference lawto imports, and any attempt to raise oil tariffs or impose oil import quotas.We oppose all efforts to nationalize energy companies, or force them toplow back revenues solely into energy production and the discovery of energysources, or prohibit them from acquiring companies in non-energy fields.We also oppose all efforts to break up vertically and horizontally integratedenergy companies or force them to divest their pipelines.
We consider all attempts to impose an operational or standby programof gasoline rationing to be unworkable, unnecessary, and tyrannical.
We favor the creation of a free market in oil by instituting full propertyrights in underground oil and by the repeal of all federal and state controlsover price and output in the petroleum industry. All government-owned energyresources should be turned over to private ownership.
Pollution of other people's property is a violation of individual rights.Present legal principles, particularly the unjust and false concept of "publicproperty," block privatisation of the use of the environment and henceblock resolution of controversies over resource use. We support the developmentof an objective legal system defining property rights to air and water.We call for a modification of the laws governing such torts as trespassand nuisance to cover damages done by air, water, radiation, and noise pollution.We oppose legislative proposals to exempt persons who claim damage fromradiation from having to prove such damage was in fact caused by radiation.Strict liability, not government agencies and arbitrary government standards,should regulate pollution. We therefore demand the abolition of the EnvironmentalProtection Agency. We also oppose government-mandated smoking and non-smokingareas in privately owned businesses.
Toxic waste disposal problems have been created by government policiesthat separate liability from property. Rather than making taxpayers payfor toxic waste clean-ups, individual property owners, or in the case ofcorporations, the responsible managers and employees, should be held strictlyliable for material damage done by their property. Claiming that one hasabandoned a piece of property does not absolve one of the responsibilityfor actions one has set in motion. We condemn the EPA's Superfund whosetaxing powers are used to penalize all chemical firms, regardless of theirconduct. Such clean-ups are a subsidy of irresponsible companies at theexpense of responsible ones.
3. CONSUMER PROTECTION
We support strong and effective laws against fraud and misrepresentation.However, we oppose paternalistic regulations which dictate to consumers,impose prices, define standards for products, or otherwise restrict risk-takingand free choice. We oppose governmental promotion or imposition of the metricsystem.
We oppose all so-called "consumer protection" legislation whichinfringes upon voluntary trade, and call for the abolition of the ConsumerProduct Safety Commission. We advocate the repeal of all laws banning orrestricting the advertising of prices, products, or services. We specificallyoppose laws requiring an individual to buy or use so-called "self-protection"equipment such as safety belts, air bags, or crash helmets.
We advocate the abolition of the Federal Aviation Administration, whichhas jeopardized airline safety by arrogating to itself a monopoly of safetyregulation and enforcement.
We advocate the abolition of the Food and Drug Administration and particularlyits policies of mandating specific nutritional requirements and denyingthe right of manufacturers to make non-fraudulent claims concerning theirproducts. We advocate an end to compulsory fluoridation of water supplies.We specifically oppose government regulation of the price, potency, or quantityable to be produced or purchased of drugs or other consumer goods. Thereshould be no laws regarding what substances (nicotine, alcohol, hallucinogens,narcotics, Laetrile, artificial sweeteners, vitamin supplements, or other"drugs") a person may ingest or otherwise use.
We advocate the complete separation of education and State. Governmentschools lead to the indoctrination of children and interfere with the freechoice of individuals. Government ownership, operation, regulation, andsubsidy of schools and colleges should be ended. We call for the repealof the guarantees of tax-funded, government-provided education, which arefound in most state constitutions.
As an interim measure to encourage the growth of private schools andvariety in education, including home schooling, we support tax credits fortuition and other expenditures related to an individual's education. Welikewise favor tax credits for child care and oppose nationalization ofthe child-care industry. We oppose denial of tax-exempt status to schoolsbecause of those schools' private policies on hiring, admissions, and studentdeportment. We support the repeal of all taxes on the income or propertyof private schools, whether for profit or non-profit.
We condemn compulsory education laws, which spawn prison-like schoolswith many of the problems associated with prisons, and we call for an immediaterepeal of such laws.
Until government involvement in education is ended, we support elimination,within the governmental school system, of forced busing and corporal punishment.We further support immediate reduction of tax support for schools, and removalof the burden of school taxes from those not responsible for the educationof children.
Recognizing that the American people are not a collective national resource,we oppose all coercive measures for population control.
We oppose government actions that either compel or prohibit abortion,sterilization, or any other forms of birth control. Specifically, we condemnthe vicious practice of forced sterilization of welfare recipients or ofmentally retarded or "genetically defective" individuals.
We regard the tragedies caused by unplanned, unwanted pregnancies tobe aggravated, if not created, by government policies of censorship, restriction,regulation, and prohibition. Therefore, we call for the repeal of all lawsthat restrict anyone, including children, from engaging in voluntary exchangesof goods, services, or information regarding human sexuality, reproduction,birth control, or related medical or biological technologies.
We equally oppose government laws and policies that restrict the opportunityto choose alternatives to abortion.
We support an end to all subsidies for childbearing built into our presentlaws, including welfare plans and the provision of tax-supported servicesfor children. We urge the elimination of special tax burdens on single peopleand couples with few or no children.
Government interference in transportation is characterized by monopolisticrestriction, corruption and gross inefficiency. We therefore call for thedissolution of all government agencies concerned with transportation, includingthe Department of Transportation, the Interstate Commerce Commission, theFederal Aviation Administration, the National Transportation Safety Board,the Coast Guard, and the Federal Maritime Commission, and the transfer oftheir legitimate functions to competitive private firms. We demand the returnof America's railroad system to private ownership. We call for the privatizationof airports, air traffic control systems, public roads, and the nationalhighway system. We condemn the re cartelization of commercial aviation bythe Federal Aviation Administration via rationing of take-off and landingrights and controlling scheduling in the name of "safety." Asinterim measures, we advocate an immediate end to government regulationof private transit organizations and to governmental favors to the transportationindustry. In particular, we support the immediate repeal of all laws restrictingtransit competition such as the granting of taxicab and bus monopolies andthe prohibition of private jitney services. We urge immediate deregulationof the trucking industry. Likewise, we advocate the immediate repeal offederally imposed speed limits.
7. POVERTY AND UNEMPLOYMENT
Government fiscal and monetary measures that artificially foster businessexpansion guarantee an eventual increase in unemployment rather than curtailingit. We call for the immediate cessation of such policies as well as anygovernmental attempts to affect employment levels.
We support repeal of all laws that impede the ability of any person tofind employment, such as minimum wage laws, so-called "protective"labor legislation for women and children, governmental restrictions on theestablishment of private day-care centers, and the National Labor RelationsAct. We deplore government-fostered forced retirement, which robs the elderlyof the right to work.
We seek the elimination of occupational licensure, which prevents humanbeings from working in whatever trade they wish. We call for the abolitionof all federal, state, and local government agencies that restrict entryinto any profession, such as education and law, or regulate its practice.No worker should be legally penalized for lack of certification, and noconsumer should be legally restrained from hiring unlicensed individuals.
We oppose all government welfare, relief projects, and "aid to thepoor" programs. All these government programs are invasive of privacy,paternalistic, demeaning, and inefficient. The proper source of help forsuch persons is the voluntary efforts of private groups and individuals.
To speed the time when governmental programs are replaced by effectiveprivate institutions we advocate dollar-for-dollar tax credits for all charitablecontributions.
8. HEALTH CARE
We advocate the complete separation of medicine and State. Recognizingthe individual's right to self-medication, we seek the elimination of allgovernment restrictions on the right of individuals to pursue alternativeforms of health care. Individuals should be free to contract with practitionersof their choice for all health care services. We oppose any government infringementupon the practitioner-patient relationship through regulatory agencies orcontracted review organizations. We condemn the practice of criminally prosecutingmedical practitioners under the anti-trust laws.
We oppose any form of compulsory National Health Insurance, includingmandatory health insurance benefits required of employers by the government.We favor abolition of Medicare and Medicaid programs. We also oppose anystate or federal area planning boards whose stated purpose is to consolidatehealth services or avoid their duplication. We support the removal of allgovernment barriers to medical advertising, including prohibition of publicationof doctors' fees and drug prices. We further support the elimination oflaws requiring prescriptions for the dispensing of medicines and other health-relateditems.
We condemn efforts by government to impose a medical orthodoxy on society.We specifically oppose the attempt by state and local governments to denyparents the right to choose the option of home births and to discouragethe development of privately funded women's clinics. We call for the repealof all laws that restrict the practice of lay midwifery or that permit harassmentof lay midwives and home birth practitioners. We also call for the repealof all medical licensing laws, which have raised medical costs while creatinga government-imposed monopoly of doctors and hospitals.
Since a person's body is his or her own property, we favor repeal ofthe existing prohibition on the commercial sale and purchase of body parts.
We favor the deregulation of the health insurance industry, and opposegovernment-imposed limits on its use of genetic and other screening andtesting methods. We oppose laws that limit the freedom of contract of patientsand health care professionals, and laws regulating the supply of legal aidon a contingency fee basis. We also oppose subsidy of malpractice insurancethrough public funds. We call for the repeal of laws forcing health careprofessionals to render medical services in emergencies or other situations.
We recognize that AIDS is a dread disease of epidemic proportions. Butgovernmental proposals to combat it present an unprecedented threat to individualliberty and often encourage the spread of the disease. We oppose all government-mandatedAIDS testing. We are opposed to FDA restrictions which make it difficultfor individuals to secure treatment for this disease. We also call for thedecriminalization of hypodermic syringes, especially since sharing needlesis now a major means of transmission of the disease. We oppose government-mandatedcontact tracing and state intervention into the private medical recordsof individuals. We are opposed to efforts by the government, especiallythe postal service, to restrict the dissemination of AIDS education material.We support the rights of all individuals to freedom of association includingthe right not to associate.
We condemn attempts at the federal, state, or local level to cripplethe advance of science by governmental restriction of research. We opposesubsidies to, or restrictions of, medical education. We call for an endto government policies compelling individuals to submit to medical experiments,treatment, and testing. We condemn compulsory hospitalization, compulsoryvaccination, and compulsory fluoridation. As interim measures, we advocatedollar-for-dollar tax credits to any individual or group providing healthcare services to the needy or paying for such services. Tax credits shouldalso be made available for private grants to medical education and medicalresearch.
Because all individuals should have full responsibility and control oftheir own lives, we support the right of terminally or hopelessly ill personsto end their lives. We support the freedom to use living wills and durablemedical powers of attorney in which individuals declare the manner in whichthey are to be treated and the procedures for disposal of their remains.In the absence of such wills and the ability for the individual to choose(e.g. coma) the matter should be decided by such person or persons as theindividual may have clearly preferred, with whatever guidance they may desire.In keeping with the principle of non-coercion, no individual shall be forcedto either continue or terminate life sustaining care. This right does notentitle individuals to force medical professionals or others to assist themin ending their lives or in continuing life support.
9. RESOURCE USE
Resource management is properly the responsibility and right of the legitimateowners of land, water, and other natural resources. We oppose governmentcontrol of resource use through eminent domain, zoning laws, building codes,rent control, regional planning, urban renewal, or purchase of developmentrights with tax money. Such regulations and programs violate property rights,discriminate against minorities, create housing shortages, and tend to causehigher rents.
We advocate the establishment of an efficient and just system of privatewater rights, applied to all bodies of water, surface and underground. Sucha system should be built upon a doctrine of first claim and use. The allocationof water should be governed by unrestricted competition and unregulatedprices. All government restrictions upon private use or voluntary transferof water rights or similar despotic controls can only aggravate the misallocationof water.
We also advocate the privatization of government and quasi-governmentwater supply systems. The construction of government dams and other waterprojects should cease, and existing government water projects should betransferred to private ownership. We favor the abolition of the Bureau ofReclamation and the Army Corps of Engineers' civilian functions. We alsofavor the abolition of all local water districts and their power to tax.Only the complete separation of water and the State will prevent futurewater crises.
We call for the homesteading or other just transfer to private ownershipof federally held lands. We oppose any use of executive orders invokingthe Antiquities Act to set aside public lands. We call for the abolitionof the Bureau of Land Management and the U.S. Forest Service. Forced surface-miningof privately homesteaded lands in which the government has reserved surfacemining rights to itself is a violation of the rights of the present landholders.We recognize the legitimacy of resource planning by means of private, voluntarycovenants. We oppose creation of new government parks or wilderness andrecreation areas. Such parks and areas that already exist should be transferredto non-government ownership. Pending such just transfer, their operatingcosts should be borne by their users rather than by taxpayers.
America's free market in agriculture, the system that feeds much of theworld, has been plowed under by government intervention. Government subsidies,regulation, and taxes have encouraged the centralization of agriculturalbusiness. Government export policies hold American farmers hostage to thepolitical whims of both Republican and Democratic administrations. Governmentembargoes on grain sales and other obstacles to free trade have frustratedthe development of free and stable trade relationships between peoples ofthe world.
The agricultural problems facing America today are not insoluble, however.Government policies can be reversed. Farmers and consumers alike shouldbe free from the meddling and counterproductive measures of the federalgovernment -- free to grow, sell, and buy what they want, in the quantitythey want, when they want. Five steps can be taken immediately:
a. abolition of the Department of Agriculture
b. elimination of all government farm programs, including price supports,direct subsidies, and all regulation on agricultural production;
c. deregulation of the transportation industry and abolition of the InterstateCommerce Commission;
d. repeal of federal inheritance taxes; and
e. ending government involvement in agricultural pest control. A policyof pest control whereby private individuals or corporations bear full responsibilityfor damages they inflict on their neighbors should be implemented.
11. OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY AND HEALTH ACT (OSHA)
We call for the repeal of the Occupational Safety and Health Act. Thislaw denies the right to liberty and property to both employer and employee,and it interferes in their private contractual relations. OSHA's arbitraryand high-handed actions invade property rights, raise costs, and are aninjustice imposed on business.
12. SOCIAL SECURITY
We favor the repeal of the fraudulent, virtually bankrupt, and increasinglyoppressive Social Security system. Pending that repeal, participation inSocial Security should be made voluntary. Victims of the Social Securitytax should have a claim against government property. We note that membersof the U.S. Congress, and certain federal, state, and local government employees,have been accorded the privileges of non-participation, one which is notaccorded the working men and women of America.
13. POSTAL SERVICE
We propose the abolition of the government Postal Service. The presentsystem, in addition to being inefficient, encourages government surveillanceof private correspondence. Pending abolition, we call for an end to themonopoly system and for allowing free competition in all aspects of postalservice.
14. CIVIL SERVICE
We propose the abolition of the Civil Service system, which entrenchesa permanent and growing bureaucracy upon the land. We recognize that theCivil Service is inherently a system of concealed patronage. We thereforerecommend return to the Jeffersonian principle of rotation in office.
15. ELECTION LAWS
We call for an end to government control of political parties, consistentwith First Amendment rights to freedom of association and freedom of expression.As private voluntary groups, political parties should be allowed to establishtheir own rules for nomination procedures, primaries, and conventions.
We urge repeal of the Federal Election Campaign Act which suppressesvoluntary support of candidates and parties, compels taxpayers to subsidizepoliticians and political views which many do not wish to support, invadesthe privacy of American citizens, and protects the Republican and Democraticparties from competition. This law is particularly dangerous as it enablesthe federal government to control the elections of its own administratorsand beneficiaries, thereby further reducing its accountability to the citizens.
Elections at all levels should be in the control of those who wish toparticipate in or support them voluntarily. We therefore call for an endto any tax-financed subsidies to candidates or parties and the repeal ofall laws which restrict voluntary financing of election campaigns.
Many state legislatures have established prohibitively restrictive lawswhich in effect exclude alternative candidates and parties from their rightfulplace on election ballots. Such laws wrongfully deny ballot access to politicalcandidates and groups and further deny the voters their right to considerall legitimate alternatives. We hold that no state has an interest to protectin this area except for the fair and efficient conduct of elections.
The Australian ballot system, introduced into the United States in thelate nineteenth century, is an abridgement of freedom of expression andof voting rights. Under it, the names of all the officially approved candidatesare printed in a single government sponsored format and the voter indicateshis or her choice by marking it or by writing in an approved but unlistedcandidate's name. We should return to the previous electoral system wherethere was no official ballot or candidate approval at all, and thereforeno state or federal restriction of access to a "single ballot."Instead, voters submitted their own choices and had the option of using"tickets" or cards printed by candidates or political parties.
In order to grant voters a full range of choice in federal, state, andlocal elections, we propose the addition of the alternative "None ofthe above is acceptable" to all ballots. We further propose that inthe event that "none of the above is acceptable" receives a pluralityof votes in any election, the elective office for that term should remainunfilled and unfunded.
IV. FOREIGN AFFAIRS
American foreign policy should seek an America at peace with the worldand the defense -- against attack from abroad -- of the lives, liberty,and property of the American people on American soil. Provision of suchdefense must respect the individual rights of people everywhere.
The principle of non-intervention should guide relationships betweengovernments. The United States government should return to the historiclibertarian tradition of avoiding entangling alliances, abstaining totallyfrom foreign quarrels and imperialist adventures, and recognizing the rightto unrestricted trade, travel, and immigration.
A. DIPLOMATIC POLICY
The important principle in foreign policy should be the elimination ofintervention by the United States government in the affairs of other nations.We would negotiate with any foreign government without necessarily concedingmoral legitimacy to that government. We favor a drastic reduction in costand size of our total diplomatic establishment. In addition, we favor therepeal of the Logan Act, which prohibits private American citizens fromengaging in diplomatic negotiations with foreign governments.
2. INTERNATIONAL TRAVEL AND FOREIGN INVESTMENTS
We recognize that foreign governments might violate the rights of Americanstraveling, living, or owning property abroad, just as those governmentsviolate the rights of their own citizens. We condemn all such violations,whether the victims are U.S. citizens or not.
Any effort, however, to extend the protection of the United States governmentto U.S. citizens when they or their property fall within the jurisdictionof a foreign government involves potential military intervention. We thereforecall upon the United States government to adhere rigidly to the principlethat all U.S. citizens travel, live, and own property abroad at their ownrisk. In particular, we oppose -- as unjust tax-supported subsidy -- anyprotection of the foreign investments of U.S. citizens or businesses.
The issuance of U.S. passports should cease. We look forward to an erain which American citizens and foreigners can travel anywhere in the worldwithout a passport. We aim to restore a world in which there are no passports,visas, or other papers required to cross borders. So long as U.S. passportsare issued, they should be issued to all individuals without discriminationand should not be revoked for any reason.
3. HUMAN RIGHTS
We condemn the violations of human rights in all nations around the world.We particularly abhor the widespread and increasing use of torture for interrogationand punishment. We call upon all the world's governments to fully implementthe principles and prescriptions contained in this platform and therebyusher in a new age of international harmony based upon the universal reignof liberty.
Until such a global triumph for liberty, we support both political andrevolutionary actions by individuals and groups against governments thatviolate rights. We recognize the right of all people to resist tyranny anddefend themselves and their rights. We condemn, however, the use of force,and especially the use of terrorism, against the innocent, regardless ofwhether such acts are committed by governments or by political and revolutionarygroups.
The violation of rights and liberty by other governments can never justifyforeign intervention by the United States government. Today, no governmentis innocent of violating human rights and liberty, and none can approachthe issue with clean hands. In keeping with our goal of peaceful internationalrelations, we call upon the United States government to cease its hypocrisyand its sullying of the good name of human rights. Only private individualsand organizations have any place speaking out on this issue.
4. WORLD GOVERNMENT
We support withdrawal of the United States government from, and an endto its financial support for, the United Nations. We oppose U.S. governmentparticipation in any world or international government. We oppose any treatyunder which individual rights would be violated.
We recognize the right to political secession. This includes the rightto secession by political entities, private groups, or individuals. Exerciseof this right, like the exercise of all other rights, does not remove legaland moral obligations not to violate the rights of others.
1. MILITARY POLICY
Any U.S. military policy should have the objective of providing securityfor the lives, liberty and property of the American people in the U.S. againstthe risk of attack by a foreign power. This objective should be achievedas inexpensively as possible and without undermining the liberties it isdesigned to protect.
We recognize that the one significant existing risk of foreign aggressionagainst Americans is the huge Soviet arsenal of nuclear weapons. The potentialuse of Soviet, and U.S., nuclear weapons is the greatest threat to all thepeoples of the world, not only Americans. Thus, the objective should beto reduce the risk that a nuclear war might begin and its scope if it does.
We reject the policy of massive nuclear retaliation known as Mutual AssuredDestruction (MAD), a policy which ostensibly deters an attack by threateningto kill hundreds of millions of innocent people in the attacker's countryand utterly destroy its society. MAD is immoral on its face and impracticalbecause neither the U.S. nor the Soviet government continues to believein its credibility. Furthermore, MAD provides no defense against irrationalor accidental nuclear attack.
We call on both the U.S. and Soviet governments to continue negotiationstoward mutual reduction of nuclear armaments, to the end that all such weaponswill ultimately be eliminated, under such conditions of verification asto ensure mutual security. During arms reduction negotiations, and to enhancetheir progress, the U.S. should begin the retirement of some of its nuclearweapons as proof of its commitment. Because the U.S. has many more thousandsof nuclear weapons than are currently required, beginning the process ofarms reduction would not jeopardize American security. U.S. weapons of indiscriminatemass destruction should be replaced with smaller weapons aimed solely atmilitary targets and not designed or targeted to kill millions of civilians.
We call on the U.S. government to remove its nuclear weapons from Europe.If European countries want nuclear weapons on their soil, they should takefull responsibility for them and pay the cost.
We call for the replacement of MAD, or nuclear war fighting policies,with a policy of developing cost-effective defensive systems. Accordingly,we advocate termination of the 1972 ABM treaty or any future agreement whichwould prevent defensive systems on U.S. territory or in earth orbit.
We call for the withdrawal of all American military personnel stationedabroad, including the countries of NATO Europe, Japan, the Philippines,Central America and South Korea. There is no current or foreseeable riskof any conventional military attack on the American people, particularlyfrom long distances. We call for the withdrawal of the U.S. from commitmentsto engage in war on behalf of other governments and for abandonment of doctrinessupporting military intervention such as the Monroe Doctrine and the ReaganDoctrine.
2. PRESIDENTIAL WAR POWERS
We call for the reform of the Presidential War Powers Act to end thePresident's power to initiate military action, and for the abrogation ofall Presidential declarations of "states of emergency." Theremust be no further secret commitments and unilateral acts of military interventionby the Executive Branch.
We favor a Constitutional amendment limiting the presidential role asCommander-in-Chief to its original meaning, namely that of the head of thearmed forces in wartime. The Commander-in Chief role, correctly understood,confers no additional authority on the President.
C. ECONOMIC POLICY
1. FOREIGN AID
We support the elimination of tax-supported military, economic, technical,and scientific aid to foreign governments or other organizations. We supportthe abolition of government underwriting of arms sales. We further supportabolition of federal agencies that make American taxpayers guarantors ofexport-related loans, such as the Export-Import Bank and the Commodity CreditCorporation. We also oppose the participation of the U.S. government ininternational commodity circles which restrict production, limit technologicalinnovation, and raise prices.
We call for the repeal of all prohibitions on individuals or firms contributingor selling goods and services to any foreign country or organization.
2. INTERNATIONAL MONEY
We favor withdrawal of the United States from all international papermoney and other inflationary credit schemes. We favor withdrawal from theWorld Bank and the International Monetary Fund.
We strongly oppose any bailout of foreign governments or American banksby the United States, either by means of the International Monetary Fundor through any other governmental device.
3. UNOWNED RESOURCES
We oppose any recognition of fiat claims by national governments or internationalbodies to unclaimed territory. Individuals have the right to homestead unownedresources, both within the jurisdictions of national governments and withinsuch unclaimed territory as the ocean, Antarctica, and the volume of outerspace. We urge the development of objective international standards forrecognizing homesteaded claims to private ownership of such forms of propertyas transportation lanes, broadcast bands, mineral rights, fishing rights,and ocean farming rights. All laws, treaties, and international agreementsthat would prevent or restrict homesteading of unowned resources shouldbe abolished. We specifically hail the U.S. refusal to accept the proposedLaw of the Sea Treaty because the treaty excluded private property principles,and we oppose any future ratification.
D. INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS
United States colonialism has left a legacy of property confiscation,economic manipulation, and over-extended defense boundaries. We favor immediateself-determination for all people living in colonial dependencies, suchas Samoa, Guam, Micronesia, the Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico, to freethese people from United States dominance, accompanied by the terminationof subsidization of them at taxpayers' expense. Land seized by the UnitedStates government should be returned to its rightful owners.
2. FOREIGN INTERVENTION
We would end the current U.S. government policy of foreign intervention,including military and economic aid, guarantees, and diplomatic meddling.We would end all limitation of private foreign aid, both military and economic.Voluntary cooperation with any economic boycott should not be treated asa crime.
We would repeal the Neutrality Act of 1794, and all other U.S. neutralitylaws which restrict the efforts of Americans to aid overseas organizationsfighting to overthrow or change governments.
We would no longer incorporate foreign nations into the U.S. defenseperimeter. We would cease the creation and maintenance of U.S. bases andsites for the pre-positioning of military material in other countries. Wewould end the practice of stationing of American military troops overseas.
We make no exceptions to the above.
3. SPACE EXPLORATION
We oppose all government restrictions upon voluntary peaceful use ofouter space. We condemn all international attempts to prevent or limit privateexploration, industrialization, and colonization of the moon, planets, asteroids,satellite orbits, Lagrange libration points, or any other extra-terrestrialresources. We specifically call for the repudiation of the U.N. Moon Treaty.We support the abolition of the National Aeronautics and Space Administrationand the privatization of all artificial satellites.
Our silence about any other particular government law, regulation, ordinance,directive, edict, control, regulatory agency, activity, or machination shouldnot be construed to imply approval.