Was this article seriously meant to deter libertarians from voting for Darrell Castle?
by Clint Bishop
If there is anything that has annoyed me this election cycle, it has been the unfounded attacks against Darrell Castle, the Constitution Party Candidate for President by purportedly objective journalists. Without treading deeply into my personal journey which led to my support of Castle, I’ll simply offer that I’m a Consitutionist, believing in the original intent of the founding fathers for our nation. A long and winding path has carried me here, and I’m pleased to have traveled it. Philosophically it aligns me primarily with two ideologies, paleo-conservatism and the libertarian right. Now down to business…
On August 25th, I received several Facebook notifications of friends who were commenting on an article that had been posted in a couple of Libertarian Facebook goups and pages. I went to check out one notification and realized over half of my 100+ notifications cleared up from clicking on the same article in two separate groups. This article was on fire! Mr. Josh Guckert of The Libertarian Republic had written an article titled ‘Top 10 Reasons Not to Vote for Constitution Party Candidate Darrell Castle’. My mind told me, “Here we go again!”, but my gut told me to relax and read on… It was apparent, reading the title, that it was another hit piece against Castle – but to my surprise, the majority of the comments I saw suggested that the article’s original purpose had backfired. Many were hailing the list as a reason TO vote for Castle.
First and foremost, I’d like to thank Mr. Guckert for the exposure. Regardless of the article’s (lack of) accuracy or completeness, it has certainly drawn more liberty-minded individuals towards the campaign. He begins by making the understatement that “some libertarians” are upset with the nomination of Gary Johnson, as well as the alternatives in the major parties. Many principled libertarians are furious with the dismal front man for the Libertarian Party. Their frustrations aren’t solely focused towards Mr. Johnson, however. The purists turned waterboys for the LP have incensed them as well. Let’s take a look at Castle, whose “record indicates a very frightening candidacy.”
First, Mr. Guckert implies that Darrell Castle is to the right of Donald Trump on immigration. He also states that libertarians generally favor a simpler path for potential workers. For starters, Mr. Trump has already flip flopped on the issue of immigration so it’s impossible to compare the two candidates side by side. Secondly, if we could take his primary position held dear by his ardent supporters, then Trump is notorious for his irrational promise of “building the wall that Mexico will pay for” while executing a mass roundup and deportation of all illegal immigrants. Contrary to popular belief, many libertarians aren’t exactly thrilled at the idea of blanket amnesty and open borders. Castle supports neither of these. We are a sovereign nation and have a right to, and should defend our borders. In his recent interview on The Glenn Beck Program, Mr. Castle agreed with the hosts that mass deportation wasn’t the answer.
The article also points to Mr. Darrell Castle supporting a “blanket ban on ALL immigration”. What the writer is referring to is Mr. Castle’s suggested moratorium on all immigration until immigrants can be properly screened and vetted as not being national security risks, as well as properly securing our borders. There is Constitutional basis in protecting our nation from foreign invasion, specified in Article IV, Section 4.
2. Gay Rights
In Reason No. 2, the author states that Castle has a very socially conservative and seemingly anti-gay record, followed by a quote from Castle regarding the government’s relentless assault on Christian civilization and western civilization in general. Not sure what to say here, except “ok…” What the quote said isn’t nearly as telling as what Mr. Guckert DIDN’T tell his readers concerning Mr. Castle and marriage. Darrell Castle is a Christian, as is the majority of the nation. His belief is that marriage is a religious institution, defined only by God. As such, he states that the government has no place in marriage, including redefining God’s definition of it. Mr. Castle doesn’t believe in requesting a license from the government for marrying a woman OR a man should be compulsory. My, what a statist…
At 8:08 of the C Span interview above, Mr. Castle elaborates on his position.
3. Separation of Church and State
I really shouldn’t even touch this one because the fallacious subtitle says it all. I will respond just to humor myself, however. There is no Separation of Church and State. The First Amendment and Establishment Clause that Mr. Guckert refers to is, of course, intended to keep the government out of the Church, not religion out of the State. Many libertarians and liberals often misinterpret this, so it’s no surprise. He states that Castle suggests the Bible is supreme to the Constitution by stating that the government can’t legitimately authorize or define marriage or family relations contrary to what God has instituted, which by that very Clause, would vindicate Mr. Castle’s statements regarding marriage and family as true.
The author then goes on to quote the Constitution Party Platform Preamble (no surprise) as proof that Castle doesn’t believe in the Establishment Clause (again). Mr. Guckert states that it was created “to prevent entanglement of government and religion”. He may want to get a refund on the law degree that his profile states he has, because that wasn’t the purpose of the Establishment Clause. Its purpose was to prevent government from interfering in Church affairs and to prevent the establishment of a state religion. That brings us to the good ole theocracy argument that some libertarians attempt to use against the Constitution Party. It is undeniable that our nation was founded upon Judeo-Christian principles. Everything, from our natural rights that were bestowed upon us by our Creator (the God of Abraham) to our nation’s pleas and thanksgivings to God illustrate such. We can maintain our Christian principles and morals without founding a state religion of Christianity, and in fact we’ve done it for over 240 years.
4. Obscenity and Pornography
In this section the author begins by saying that “Castle has not taken occasion to address this particular issue…”. So why would you list it? But in order to establish a pattern here, I will mention that his knock against the Constitution Party Platform plank can be squashed with two words, “Reading Comprehension”. If one actually reads this plank, it states the obvious, that states have the blessing of the Party to protect what is truly free speech and to enforce the current laws regarding obscenity, pornography, and sexually-oriented businesses.
5. Death Penalty
I must admit that I was actually caught off guard with this section. The 2012-2016 Platform held that the Party’s position on life was 100% Pro-Life from “conception to natural death” and the 2016 Platform was recently released. Apparently the 2016 Platform Committee found it suitable to condone the death penalty. I can’t argue the constitutionality of the death penalty because the Right to Life cannot be taken without due process. Obviously, if someone has been convicted and sentenced to the death penalty, then they have been afforded due process. I don’t agree with it personally. What I find ironic about this, however, is that the author, a libertarian, is lecturing the Constitution Party on issues of life and death while the Libertarian Party Platform condones the killing of innocent babies. But hey, those serial killers who take the life of the unborn deserve the sympathy, amirite?
6. Free Trade
Had the author simply written an admonishment of the Constitution Party, minus Darrell Castle, and left it at “Their trade policies suck”, I may not have been able to defend our Party. However, once again, Mr. Guckert listed Party platform planks rather than Mr. Castle’s views on trade. Mr. Castle has stated time and time again that he is an advocate of free trade, but not an advocate of Trade Agreements that surrender our national sovereignty to international courts and organizations which are a part of unelected, internationalist bureaucracies; these agreements are more commonly seen as “managed trade agreements”, not FREE Trade agreements. Mr. Castle does see tariffs as a constitutional means of raising revenue, as does the party, yet prefers the constitutional taxation through state apportionment while maintaining cost controlling free trade with individual nations. At 12:20 in the C-SPAN interview, Castle explains these views briefly.
One of the more surprising excerpts from the article follows, and accuses Castle of conspiratorial thought due to sharing his anti-globalist views (a sentiment we usually SHARE with libertarians), “We see our country and its workers as more than bargaining chips for multinational corporations and international banks in their ill-conceived and evil New World Order.” In fact, this was one of the most frequent criticisms I saw of Castle in the author’s work; it seems as though Mr. Guckert must not be aware that Ron Paul, the individual who arguably did the most to popularize libertarianism in the 21st century and the 1988 Libertarian Party presidential nominee as well, often criticized the plan for a global government known as the New World Order.
7. Campaign Speech and Term Limits
Is this really as big of a deal as taxes or abortion? I agree that corporations shouldn’t buy elections. Individual donations shouldn’t matter but Super PAC’s have resulted in converting our nation into a corporate oligarchy. We do, in fact, have de facto term limits in the form of elections…
8. Second Amendment Liability
The Constitution Party is unequivocally the most pro-Second Amendment Party and Darrell Castle is likewise unequivocally the most pro-Second Amendment Candidate in the race. We believe in no restrictions whatsoever on law abiding citizens. If you doubt this, please scroll through Mr. Castle’s isidewith.com answers for yourself. One answer in particular was brought into question by the author in regards to victims of gun violence being allowed to sue firearms dealers and manufacturers, Darrell Castle’s answer: Yes, no corporation should be immune from the possibility that their product after being introduced into public commerce was defective, etc. and caused harm. Mr. Castle has addressed this and didn’t answer the question in relation to gun violence victims, but in regards to defective product and product liability.
9. Net Neutrality
Seriously? I don’t even know what to say to this…the particular question asked by ISideWith regarding internet service providers speeding up access to more popular websites at the potential cost of less popular ones is a non-issue in this critically important election that we are facing. Mr. Castle’s answer to this question was also not in any way “Orwellian,” as the author absurdly suggests.
10. Eminent Domain
As stated in the quote used, Eminent Domain is constitutional in certain circumstances.
I can’t help but sit back and envision this young man devising a plan to bury Darrell Castle and the Constitution Party in an effort to coalesce libertarians around Gary Johnson. Due to this, I went back and reviewed his recent articles. Sure enough, his post prior to this one was a video titled ‘Rebutting The Rolling Stone and “Why You Shouldn’t Vote for Gary Johnson” ‘. From what I’ve gathered about libertarians, they don’t need someone to inform them whether Castle is ‘libertarian enough’ for them or not. Libertarians seem to be among the most analytically minded individuals in the political realm. This was evidenced by the fact that so many libertarians immediately criticized the article debunking the misrepresentations and innuendo, as they had already researched Castle for themselves and immediately recognized the bias. Another important factor seemingly ignored by the writer is that libertarians appreciate the fact that Castle is more libertarian than Gary Johnson without striving to be libertarian. Johnson, on the other hand, is quite superficial with the philosophy, infuriating libertarians who aren’t looking to toe the Party line. Despite Josh Guckert’s best efforts to “prove” the contrary, Darrell Castle remains by far the best choice for principled libertarians and constitutionists in the 2016 presidential race.