Thursday, May 29, 2008

Last Minute Anti-Ruwart Lies on the Convention Floor

Someone (or a group of someones) was spreading ugly and outlandish anti-Ruwart rumors on the convention floor during the voting. Before the 5th ballot, after Senator Mike Gravel was dropped, I asked Mike's daughter, Lynne Moiser, to vote for Mary Ruwart. 

I'd been supporting and advising the Gravel campaign during the previous week, since they were new to the Libertarian mindset and convention process. Lynne said she'd go along and vote for Ruwart, since I'd been nice to the Gravel campaign. 

But Lynne also told me an unsettling rumor. She said she'd heard on the floor that the "Washington Post was about to break a story that the Libertarian Party was nominating child pornographer Mary Ruwart." That false and ugly accusation about Ruwart was old news, based on an out of context quote from a book by Ruwart that had been unearthed by George Phillies. Both Wayne Allyn Root and Christine Smith had pounced on Ruwart at the time, asking for her to withdraw. The rumor was known and disregarded by Ruwart's supporters. However, Lynne was new to Libertarianism. She was unfamiliar with our blogs and channels of communication. This false rumor was news to her. And this Washington Post twist was entirely new. So, the Washington Post was "about to break a story" about the LP was nominating a child pornographer? Really? Where did that come from? Well, an effective lie needs to be specific. It's more believable that way. Clearly, someone was spreading lies on the convention floor, when only Barr, Ruwart, and Root remained on the ballot -- in that order. Which camp was spreading these lies? Barr or Root? Root was in last place (behind Ruwart) and his campaign has a history of playing the "child pornographer " card against Ruwart. But there's no hard evidence either way. That's how lies work. They emerge, do their damage, then disappear down the memory hole. Sadly, there's no price to pay for spreading lies late in the game. By the time the lies are exposed and confronted, the balloting is long since over. Yet for the record, it seems likely that at least one of the candidates on the LP's Barr/Root ticket (or their campaigns) was playing dirty tricks on the convention floor. Which of these men wanted the nomination that bad? Either way, it's sad. Very sad.

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