32 votes

A New Year's Resolution for Liberty: Let's Play To Win

The only British political party that describes itself as libertarian is the United Kingdom Independence Party, or "UKIP". Twenty years ago, it did not exist. Today, it has the support of anywhere between 7 percent and 14 percent of the British electorate. This rise from non-existence to a force in British politics so powerful that even the mainstream media have begun to identify it as the biggest threat to the governing Conservative party is all the more remarkable because the majority of the British electorate doesn't actually know what the word "libertarian" means.

On our side of the pond, the much more robustly libertarian "Libertarian Party" of the United States, is more than twice as old as UKIP. Yet, even after all the unprecedented excitement for libertarian ideas that was generated by the extraordinary presidential run of Ron Paul, and even with the willingness of the American mainstream media to use the word "libertarian" (small "l") to describe Dr. Paul and those who broadly agree with him, the Libertarian Party's candidate, who has a very impressive executive resume, barely picked up 1 percent of the vote in November. The meager impact of the liberty movement looks even weaker when one considers that the USA is (arguably) the most libertarian country on the planet and (less arguably) the country with the most libertarian founding narrative.

Why, then, has the Libertarian Party -- and more importantly, the much broadly based new liberty movement -- failed to make a significant electoral impact, despite its recent tailwinds?

More specifically, why can't a libertarian-leaning movement in the U.S., which is a libertarian-leaning country, have even one tenth of the success of a libertarian-leaning movement in the UK, a deeply social democratic country, despite working on the task for twice as long?

The answer -- or at least the largest part of it -- is surely not that elusive.

A new political movement or party never succeeds in practice (at the ballot box) because it has successfully educated a majority of a population in a whole new philosophy. Rather, it succeeds because it is identified with the winning side of the dominant issue (or perhaps two dominant issues) of the day about which a majority of voters are deeply concerned but feel that the mainstream parties do not speak to their concerns in any way that indicates that those parties really understand them. The widespread adoption of a movement's broader political philosophy comes only as a result of the initial success of the movement: it is not a cause of the success in the first place.

In the case of UKIP, this dominant issue is the soft tyranny of the European Union as it interferes in the identity and the lives of the average Brit, reducing the power of Britons to shape their own culture. UKIP stands on the side of the British majority (who would likely vote, given the chance, to withdraw from the European Union), while the entire political establishment (the Conservatives (closest to our Republicans), the Labour party (closest to our Democrats) and the Liberal Democrats) not only insist that we have to be in this undemocratic entity, but also have actively pushed the nation into its jaws for at least two generations.

The lesson for the American liberty movement is that UKIP hasn't spent the 20 years of its existence trying hard to educate people on the problems of the EU: enough people could already see those problems for themselves; rather, UKIP spent two decades speaking to a feeling already widely held but politically unrepresented. Although a vote for UKIP is in fact a vote for a pro-free-market, pro-national-sovereignty, pro-individual rights, small-government philosophy, UKIP doesn't market itself by putting that entire worldview front and center: it likely knows how strange much of it would sound to the average Brit who has known nothing but social democracy since Margaret Thatcher.

Just as a sale can easily be lost when the salesman fails to stop talking after the sale has been made, UKIP simply connects with its new voters on whatever issue or two that voter is most concerned about, and then welcomes the new voter into the fold -- rather than seeking to educating him or her in a new political orthodoxy.

Libertarian types are disproportionately rationalists of an analytical bent. They are therefore prone to the quaint but false idea that the best way to win a supporter is explain one's view logically to as many people as possible. The reality, however, is that voters who adopt or even "try out" a new party come to accept its platform over time more by osmosis than logical deduction, as they discover that they feel comfortable with other members of the movement or party that they have newly joined. Ultimately, most of us are tribal beings so nearly all politics are the politics of identity.

Of course, all political activists rightly seek to persuade others of their core philosophy over time -- but doing so is not necessary to the initial electoral success on which most movements depend to influence the political mainstream and increase their base.

To a first approximation, we can see the same in American's history with the rapid rise of the Republicans as an anti-slavery party. This is a good example of a party that rose because it was on the right side an issue whose dominance as the issue of the day did not depend on the party's staking out its historic position on it.

The fact that politics are invariably dominated by one or two issues at any particular time also explains the rise of less savory movements, such as Golden Dawn in Greece today, or the Nazis in the 1930s. This fact is worth noting only because it further illustrates that the right principles are not even necessary, let alone sufficient, conditions for political success: timeliness and connection to the masses are much more electorally powerful.

Applying this fact requires members of the liberty movement to recognize that liberty's winning issue, on which they must focus when campaigning, may not be the most important issue as judged by the liberty movement's own philosophy: rather, it will be the issue that is most important to everyone else, of which the establishment is on the wrong side but the liberty movement is on the people's side.

This begs the obvious question: what is that issue? This may well be the most important question on which the potential electoral success of the liberty movement depends.

If the U.S. electorate were not so ill-informed and the American media quite so derelict, the answer would be, as it should be, the massive elimination of our civil (Constitutional) rights that has proceeded mostly over the last decade, driven by a politics of fear.

But, alas, our mainstream media are derelict and the American electorate is ill-informed at best.

Accordingly, I suspect that liberty's best chance at the ballot box is the one issue that the overwhelming majority notice everyday, quite independently of what they hear on cable news. Interestingly, it is an issue that can best be described by a term that most in the liberty movement dislike intensely, but on which it is, more than any other political grouping, most in line with the American people. That issue is "economic justice," used here to refer to that visceral sense, felt by Americans of all political stripes, that a system in which those with whom power is concentrated (the government) affords special privileges to those with who huge wealth is concentrated (corporations, especially in big finance) and certain other favored groups (lobbyists, public unions), cannot be allowed to stand.

The issue of "economic justice", broadly defined as that which is lost when a market becomes something other than the free choices of individuals who transact for mutual benefit without forcing negative externalities on anyone else, has already birthed the Tea Party and the Occupy movement. It is starkest today because of the recent bailouts and the increasing visibility of excessive pensions and benefits of a few in the government's employ, to be paid by taxpayers who are working every bit as hard but without enjoying similar benefits, to name just two examples.

Now, I am not sure that "economic justice" is the historic issue felt by all citizens and exacerbated by our political establishment that will see America's liberty movement into the mainstream. But I do know that unless the liberty movement puts the finer points of political philosophy on the back burner and sets about finding the one or two issues that matter most to people who don't even care how "libertarian" is spelled, with the humble purpose of making simple connections with the average working American, it will be in the electoral wilderness for longer than it needs to be. And ending the Fed might be a great boon to economic and social justice, but leading with that won't help the movement connect to that average American if he's not yet started through the movement's reading list. (He hasn't.)

Throughout history, political groups that have risen rapidly have resonated with the immediate experiences of the common man and woman: they haven't (just) engaged in a nationwide educational project with necessarily limited resources.

And if all this reads like an argument for a crude populism, then I can only point out that elections are simultaneously the purest and the crudest popularity contests modern society indulges in. The fact that the words "popularity" and "populism" are almost the same is not an accident. If American liberty is to gain more of the first, it shouldn't be scared by a little of the second.

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I have to respectfully disagree

UKIP is not a Libertarian leaning political party. Great article Rob, but I think you've been in the US a bit too long lol. I went to a UKIP meeting when Nigel Farage was speaking. While UKIP policy on the EU is indeed all about getting Britain back to deciding its own destiny the domestic and foreign policy is the same as the conservative party.

Let's not forget that UKIP is a splinter party from the conservative party. It splintered over one issue. Europe. I asked several questions about domestic and foreign policy and got no where with my answers just as I would have with the conservative party!

I ran against the main parties including UKIP and all it's supporters know only about UKIP policy on the EU. They don't know it's domestic policy and foreign policy are the same as the Tories! UKIP doesn't believe in sound money. They don't believe in non intervention. Without these two vital ideals a party can't be considered liberty leaning in my opinion.

I'm a big fan and follower of the liberty movement. That makes me, among others, one of the smallest minorities in the UK because people here are blissfully ignorant of the facts. People in the UK fail to see the violence inherent in the system, and those that do simply believe that it's required!

I wish it were different, but Robin is right when he points to people's social and political attitudes not changing since Thatcher.

Drop me an email sometime? Maybe when you are next in the UK and we can go for a pint. Lol

The UK really needs an evolution. I'm happy to be part of it but we need the numbers to actually start one first!

TTFN

Neil Eyre

Robin Koerner's picture

Disagreeing with what?..!

I said that UKIP calls itself libertarian, and pointed out that the Libertarian Party is, however, much more robustly libertarian than UKIP. I didn't say anything about UKIP's platform and whether it fits any definition of libertarian...

Would love to do that point and chat about this stuff...

I Guess

I was just disagreeing with the UKIP description mate.

They are taking the Lib Dems position in UK politics as the third party instead of the fourth party. This will give them a possible king making position at the next general election should there be another 'hung parliament'

At that point they will sell themselves to the Tory party or the Labour party (whoever comes first) for a referendum on EU membership just as the lib dems did for a referendum on the alternative vote.

The domestic policy would not change one little bit.

UKIP is being allowed to grow in popularity so the illusion of choice is maintained in UK politics.

Oh and im looking forward to the pint and chat. lol. any idea when you will be on this side of the pond next?

Koerner 2016!

Koerner 2016!

reedr3v's picture

excellent reasoning

.

We can win if we focus on winning people over.

If we had a large enough amount of people in America and the world united behind our shared principles,and demanded strict adherence to said principles over politics or parties,then the politicians would truly have to represent us or find themselves out of a job and irrelevant.We can make progress every single day if we focus on winning hearts and minds.Here is a suggestion on how to do it:We get one or two great short ads/videos that promote our shared values of truth,freedom,and peace.Maybe have a few quotes of Ron Paul in there.Just picture a short video explaining why we should bring our troops home,have sound money,cut taxes and spending,balance the budget,end the drug war and give power to the individual while promoting truth,freedom,peace,non-aggression and voluntary humanitarian help to our fellow man.Then we have a money bomb only to DIRECTLY purchase airtime for said ad/video.We vote with our dollars on which video is best.Then we have a "time bomb"(lol) where we all donate our time and focus our efforts spreading the video on facebook,twitter,youtube etc.Keeping it front page on the DP would surely help.Then we fine tune our efforts to make sure we are winning people over.And as long as we see it is working,we NEVER stop.With the "time bomb" method,we could make our message go viral on the internet,nationwide and worldwide,without asking people for money.With the right videos and a united effort by us,I am convinced this would work.In my opinion,this is how we win.Anyone got a better idea?I'm all ears.

Like your optimism, but...

surely all that has already happened? Once everyone with a brain agrees with us (they mostly already do), what exactly is the mechanism by which that opinion is going to be translated into actual change/cutting taxes/liberation from the fed? Do you see the problem? There is no democratic accountability. The very machines that produce the results of votes are owned and operated by the one-party state. What are you going to do about that?

Obedience to God is resistance to tyrants.

Most voters voted for Obama or Romney.

This alone tells me that a lot more people need to be won over to the side of truth,freedom and peace.Seems obvious to me.I think it is ALWAYS a good idea to try to win more people over and it can be done every day,no matter if it is right before an election or right after or somewhere in between.As I said in my previous post,I think the mechanism to true change will be when we have a large enough amount of people united behind principles who demand strict adherence to said principles by their representatives.No matter how corrupted voting machine totals are,I think winning more hearts and minds is ALWAYS a good thing.

I think you're living in a dream world

Of course its great to change hearts and minds and convince more and more people. But 'changing the hearts of the people' as a strategy alone is socialist bull#### which is completely insufficient and doesn't work. You have no actual plans for how to translate that into real change, whereby Americans might truly win their Liberty back. Denial isn't just a river in Egypt you know.

Obedience to God is resistance to tyrants.

I think the OP is correct

I think the OP is correct that we have to give an answer to one of the main problems that people are already aware of, instead of trying to convince them of a problem that they've never heard of.

My suggestions of some major problems and our answers to them:

1) The answer to economic inequality is to END corporate welfare.

2) The answer to the school shootings is to END the national gun ban on schools.

3) The answer to high unemployment of the poor and youth is to SLASH price controls on jobs (occupational licensing and "minimum wage" laws).

4) The answer to wars and foreign dictatorships is to END government foreign aid and offer open trade with those countries.

Yes, and the answer to all those issues together is...

Cut taxation. Starve the Federal snake so it is unable to do evil.

Obedience to God is resistance to tyrants.

Socialist????

How you can call the strategy I suggested "socialist" is beyond me.I and many others became Ron Paul supporters after seeing short videos on youtube and other sites.I suggested this strategy because I believe it works.I did not say this has to be the "strategy alone".It is the best strategy I can think of.Like I said in the original post.if you or someone else has a better idea,let's hear it.I'm listening.I realize you don't agree with my original post.So be it.

What I meant was...

that your reliance on 'getting enough people onboard' seems wishy washy and vague and smacks of the 'critical mass' argument peddled by all socialist revolution-style adherents. That somehow if enough people are persuaded, that in itself 'must' result in change. Not at all. Of course its great to persuade people we meet of the benefits of Liberty. But that alone is not enough. The answer, as in my post below, is co-ordinated state secession. I believe the only way Americans will be free again is if their state leaves the union. And the only way for that to succeed is if multiple states leave together.

Obedience to God is resistance to tyrants.

Did you not see the censorship?

Did you not see the censorship, the twists and spins, the lying, cheating, the rigging of another election?

As a Republican (former Libertarian and I do NOT miss that lame party at all!) the elections are rigged with big money. The GOP fought us to give Obama obama another 4 yers because Obama represents the NEO agendaand that agenda is driving America off the fiscal cliff on purpose.

I agree with you, let's make a resolution to win.. join the GOP take a seat and get these Neos OUT! That is how we win.

Screw the Libertarian Party in the US. Instead lets support...

Screw the Libertarian Party in the US. Instead lets support the United Kingdom Independence Party ("UKIP") and push them as 100% anti-monachy and help them get rid of the queen.

With that witch out of the way she won't be able to interfere in our country the way she and her family has for centuries now.

She embeds her foreign agents in media and government here in the US to push for things like Gun Control and using the US military as her mercenary force to protect her global corporate interests.

If we could get this witch overthrown, politics in American would become much more simple.

As it is you would think that we had lost the war of 1812 and that the queen was many of our affairs.

.

There is a more libertarian party in the U.K

UKIP are doing well. They have some broadly libertarian policies that will dissipate as they get more popular, they are a single issue party and any secondary policy has little weight.

There was a new Libertarian party launched a few months ago called the "pro liberty party". They are small but growing.

If you wish to know more please visit their website.

www.proliberty.co.uk

Twitter: https://twitter.com/#!/youownyou (quotes)
Website: http://www.own-yourself.com

TY for sharing

Tweeted it out

"In the end, more than they wanted freedom, they wanted security. They wanted a comfortable life, and they lost it all -- security, comfort, and freedom. When ... the freedom they wished for was freedom from responsibility, then Athens ceased to be free."

I think that we can be more versatile in bringing people...

into the fold.

Rather than focusing on one or two issues, we should talk to each individual about what would likely interest them personally. Of course, this requires activists to be well-informed on a number of topics, but there's nothing wrong with that. It may end up that we talk about only one or two issues much of the time, but likely, we'll still run into those individuals that have other concerns.

UKIP is not a Libertarian Party

But it is by far the closest to it that exists in the UK.

The main parties are Socialist versions of the Corporatist Dems & GOP.

The UK government does not want to hold a referendum on membership of the EU.
It knows the answer it would get.
60%+ would vote to leave.

"In the end, more than they wanted freedom, they wanted security. They wanted a comfortable life, and they lost it all -- security, comfort, and freedom. When ... the freedom they wished for was freedom from responsibility, then Athens ceased to be free."

Not pure libertarian...

Their party isn't pure libertarian. They're anti-open borders and somewhat protectionistic and nationalistic and what not which aren't exactly pure libertarian positions. Libertarianism is part a spectrum though, so you don't have to believe in every plank to be a libertarian. From things I've read about them, I'd say that they are a centrist leaning libertarian party.

Great article!

I think you're bang on target with the analysis of how political parties gain power.- Single issues. However I don't think 'economic justice' will do it. Way too vague. Makes us sound like French revolution Jacobins, which Occupy arguably resemble.

I think the issue is and always was: taxation. If we can make people understand that their money is being forceably extracted from them, and spent on things that they don't want to spend it on, when they themselves are struggling financially, they will do something about it.

You also fail to take account of electronic voter fraud, the single biggest obstacle to true 'elections'. Anyone know what percentage of votes cast in the last election were by electronic ballot? Whatever it was, frankly all those votes are suspect for legitimacy. Until you deal with that, you're attempting to build 'popular support' in vain.

To be honest I think the entire system of Washington federal authority is too far gone down the path of tyranny. The US is not the world's most libertarian country. That would be Switzerland. They did not establish their freedom by winning any election. Tyrannies do not give up their power that way. They won it by small pockets of free men, with an agreement of mutual assistance, declaring their independence from the central state and successfully defending themselves from invasion by force of arms.

The only hope now for freedom in North America is for a group of states to declare unilaterally and at the same time their Independence from the union.

Obedience to God is resistance to tyrants.

Brilliant article! Right on target.

liberty's winning issue, on which they must focus when campaigning, may not be the most important issue as judged by the liberty movement's own philosophy: rather, it will be the issue that is most important to everyone else, of which the establishment is on the wrong side but the liberty movement is on the people's side.

This begs the obvious question: what is that issue? This may well be the most important question on which the potential electoral success of the liberty movement depends.

Yes! I couldn't agree more.

Libertarian types are disproportionately rationalists of an analytical bent. They are therefore prone to the quaint but false idea that the best way to win a supporter is explain one's view logically to as many people as possible. The reality, however, is that voters who adopt or even "try out" a new party come to accept its platform over time more by osmosis than logical deduction, as they discover that they feel comfortable with other members of the movement or party that they have newly joined. Ultimately, most of us are tribal beings so nearly all politics are the politics of identity.

Bingo, philosopher-kings are rare, a majority of philosopher-voters is an impossibility in this world. Education only goes so far, and I'm convinced that most of the people who can be educated have been educated. The focus of the movement must now be to reach the remainder, and that means identifying one or two issues they already care about and understand, and repeating our position over and over and over again in simple terms. We don't need more books and idealists, we need more soundbites, more slogans, more rhetorically skilled politicians. We need to see ourselves less as a graduate seminar and more as a marketing operation.

And if all this reads like an argument for a crude populism, then I can only point out that elections are simultaneously the purest and the crudest popularity contests modern society indulges in. The fact that the words "popularity" and "populism" are almost the same is not an accident. If American liberty is to gain more of the first, it shouldn't be scared by a little of the second.

Indeed.

"Alas! I believe in the virtue of birds. And it only takes a feather for me to die laughing."

ytc's picture

Populism . . . to capture the glenn beck /TeaP/ Occupy crowd

We tried that with our family members, with zero success ;-(

Their ingrained american exceptionalism (strong swings of superiority / inferiority complex) seems to make it very difficult for them to accept that "it is wrong to deny or suppress a person’s right to be free (unless, of course, that person is suppressing the equal right of others to be free)." Golden Rule seems to be acceptable only to those who are solidly grounded with the conviction that they are loved as much as others are.)

Robert Higgs | Thursday December 27, 2012
http://blog.independent.org/2012/12/27/freedom-because-it-wo...

I cannot help but come to the conclusion

... that the liberty movement in the US will only go over the tipping point, when 'They' push it over the edge.

There will come a time, soon. There will be a high profile incident. There will be some meme around an event that will clearly show the average person that the time has come to either return to first principles?

Or we all go down with the ship.

The average American is too distracted, too dense, too fearful to step out of their comfort zone.

But when the currency starts going into freefall ... or the military rolls out in the street in small towns around the country ... or people start disappearing without explanation in enough numbers that it starts becoming ... or any number of other major status changes take place that everyone can plainly see ...

This is when the light bulbs finally start going off and it starts sinking in for people here.

It won't happen before that. Not here.

It will happen on the edge of it being too late.

The UKIP doesn't try to push

The UKIP doesn't try to push atheism down people's throats. They don't post threads like "you can't be a Christian and libertarian at the same time" ala Adam Kokesh, etc.

It's really simple. The UKIP never had an Ayn Rand "objectivist" movement "helping them" - which was intended to split, and did indeed split, the libertarian movement in the United States. The other thing it did was nominate Alan Greenspan, a key member of the Randian movement,who became head of the Federal Reserve for 20 years. Yes, the head bankster himself.

American libertarianism was taken for a ride. By substantially the same people as the neocons if you look at the background and origins of both movements. Call it the neolibs of the neocons.

And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honor.

Did Kokesh really say that?

Could you provide a link or source to that comment Kokesh made? Not trying to out you, friend, but I've been on the fence on Kokesh for awhile and was wondering if he had any "non RP stances."

If you don't know your rights, you don't have any.

There were a couple of

There were a couple of threads on it way back when (last spring), but I'm not going to look them up just because it seems like a waste of time. But if you want to search Kokesh, there's also Kokesh demonstrating taking drugs for us thread, the Kokesh banned from the Ron Paul Rally by in Tampa thread, Kokesh airing a threat made to Romney by a listener thread, etc etc.

All of which probably emphasizes the topic of the blog article - playing to win vs being played to lose.

And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honor.

Many people also forget that

Many people also forget that a large contingent of libertarians are

a.) Still playing patty-cakes with the Republican party, think its "changeable" on a national level
b.) Totally fed up with the system and stopped voting altogether

When you count every last one of them, I'm sure we're around the 14% range as well.

The fact is most people are just waiting for an economic collapse, they think participating in the corrupt Leviathan is a waste of time and probably immoral in that it gives the system some sort of legitimacy.

Also the poster above has excellent points. Many libertarians don't realize they themselves are proselytizing others into their brand of atheism, and that they're just as or far more annoying than the average Jehovah's Witness that shows up on your doorstep from time to time. I realize this is a small percentage of people, but still, I've heard from others especially at Ron Paul events that people were very turned off by the atheists that made it their special mission to chase off every Christian or Jew.

The idea that you can't be a libertarian if you are a Christian is false. Go google search "JG Machen" - a reformed (Calvinist) theologian and founder of Westminster Theological Seminary and hero of the classical liberals, including (atheist) HL Mencken.

The Chris Bronson Show
www.cbrons.com (support libertarians on radio; checkout the podcasts)

UK and US not comparable in some regards

You're ignoring the fact that the UK has a parliamentary system with additional/mixed-member proportional representation. It's not a de facto two party presidential system like we have here in the US. Therefore, third parties can actually win seats in the legislature much easier than we can here. Bashing on libertarians who get involved in one of the two parties here in the US is simply being purposefully ignorant of the political realities we have to deal with.

In the US, third parties have never gained power and lasted longer than a few election cycles without either losing influence or supplanting one of the two existing parties and continuing the two party system. Great examples of this are the Bull Moose party, the Reform party and the Whig party. The Bull Moose and Reform parties simply died after they gained traction during the few cycles they were active. The Whigs died because they were replaced by another 3rd party, the Republicans. The important take away is that 3rd parties never last long once they catch on.

Today, with the way our electoral system is setup, it's effectively impossible for a 3rd party to get any traction absent a massive influx of capital. The two parties have everything rigged so they're in control. (The commission on presidential debates is a great example) This leaves you two choices: 1. Take over one of the parties from the ground up and change it to your liking, or 2. Stay on the fringe and be ineffective. Libertarians who believe that they'll be swept to power either as a result of economic collapse or widespread voter disgust are being tragically naive and doing themselves and the liberty movement a disservice.

I'm constantly amazed by people who completely believe in Ron Paul's ideas, yet they think he's a moron when it comes to how to effect political change. Every single time he's been elected it's been as a Republican. He tried the 3rd party route and learned how feckless it is as a method of gaining power. The libertarian party has never won any high political office. They're too interested in intellectual masturbation to see that if they only got involved in the GOP, they would over-run and control the party... just like the good old days.

The UK does NOT have proportional representation

except in part for elections to the European Parliament.

All the main parties are in favor of handing over power to a central planning undemocratic bureaucratic nightmare called the EU.

Much like the states have handed over power to the Federal government.

The lockdown on the media is almost as bad as in the US.
There are 1 or 2 positive articles on UKIP that occasionally appear in the national press - but mostly the articles disparage UKIP, just like Ron Paul.

If you get a certain percentage of the vote you get to have a political 5 minute ad on national TV when elections come around.
But this is according to how much of the vote you get.
UKIP might get 1 ad when the main parties get 10 or 20.

Feelings are strong in the UK against the EU.
The article is right - we need to focus on one or two issues to get more popular support.

I think the issue should be that both main parties have completely sold out their respective bases and the moderates (Indie's) in the middle.
Don't try and argue deep logical cases and don't mention Liberty - the public aren't interested in thinking and won't get it.

It is easy to wind up the base for BOTH parties.
Currently the topics are the Fiscal Cliff nonsense and banks being above the law.

I am getting quite a lot of positive feedback from my comments on Huffy Po and Democratic Underground.
I have also posted on Breitbart.
I post on several newspaper comments section - whenever there is an article which gives me something to bite into.

Get out there and sow some seeds of doubt. Make them start thinking. Change public opinion.
It's a tough thing to do with the media lockdown.
But there are loads of topics where you can get people to bite.
Use the topic to push the angle - the politicians have sold YOU out.

Anything you can use to ram it home that the government and their own political leaders are constantly lying to them, are corrupt and/or have sold them out - USE.

I stole this from here and posted it to the Dems yeaterday. GWH Bush & Kennedy.
I was 3rd highest for the number of recs and number of reads yesterday, out of hundreds of threads started.
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10022082638

I posted this out on Huffy Po - I was the Community Pundit comment for several hours, 2 days ago.
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Ian56/fiscal-cliff-deal...

Some other recent efforts.
The Rule of Law no longer applies in America
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10022078478
The size of the Derivatives market
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10022087173

"In the end, more than they wanted freedom, they wanted security. They wanted a comfortable life, and they lost it all -- security, comfort, and freedom. When ... the freedom they wished for was freedom from responsibility, then Athens ceased to be free."