Forword. This post is mostly a response to a post in Independent Political Report yesterday titled Judge Napolitano v Judge Gray on Theodore Roosevelt. It is largely based on Napolitano’s book Theodore and Woodrow How Two American Presidents Destroyed Constitutional Freedoms. I note that Napolitano is clearly a counterrevolutionary and that counterrevolutionaries seem to usually get things backwards, so I reversed the names which would correspond to the correct PLAS fusion ticket, progressive man/libertarian (woman-but women were all but excluded from electoral politics in 1912). Yes, that makes Wilson a Green equivalent in 2016 and Roosevelt a libertarian equivalent.
Also reader note that I am posting this here despite the invitation by paulie for all to comment/participate in the discussion because I have been banned from commenting in IPR. This ban occurred in July 2011 on the false ground by Anonymous that I threatened to spam IPR. I believe paulie was Anonymous. However, he denied it.
to be continued…
Briefly, in 1912 there was 3 major Presidential candidates. Woodrow Wilson, a progressive Democrat, who won with 42%. Taft the Republican incumbent third with 22%. Theodore Roosevelt, the former President second with 27%. He lost the Republican nomination to Taft then bolted and formed the Bull Moose Progressive party. There also was Eugene Debs the socialist with 6%.
The most important lesson to be learned here is what very nearly happened and could have happened. Roosevelt very nearly won in a close three way race. Had he won, the new Progressive party would almost certainly have gained popularity and support, sweeping out both the Democrats and Republicans. The Progressive party would further almost certainly have learned the importance of a fusion ticket and coordination of the leftist and rightist progressive (libertarian) vote. What could have happened is the American progressive movement could have spread around the world. Note that at about the same time in history the communist movement/revolution was gaining traction around the world. It eventually failed. Had Roosevelt succeeded the progressive movement would have displaced the communist movement around the world. By now we would be benefitting from such a movement and perhaps even going on to a libertarian movement.
Wilson won because the Republican party was split by the third party, the Progressive party. Now, had Wilson bolted the Democratic party in support of the Progressive party and joined the ticket, he would have brought a large block of the democratic vote with him. The Progressive party would almost certainly have won then.
As it was the victory of the progressive Wilson did him little good. The presence of the reactionary democrats and republicans in Congress would successfully suppress his progressive initiatives. The reactionaries must be swept out of power for a progressive movement to succeed.
For contemporary progressive/libertarian political victory, all that is needed is a fusion ticket to get either the Green party or Libertarian party nomination-or both. OR, like Independent Nader in 2008, get on enough ballots to theoretically win. Then coordinate the downticket ballots to have EITHER a progressive(Green) OR a Libertarian on all available ballots. Such a ticket should get enough polling to meet the threshold of 15% to get into the Presidential debates. From there it should gain popularity and support and win in a close three way plurality.
This is the Promise of PLAS.