[Vision2020] Ralph Smeed

nickgier at roadrunner.com nickgier at roadrunner.com
Thu Sep 9 12:08:17 PDT 2010

Hail to the Vision!

When I arrived in Moscow in 1972, Steve Symms was running for the House and I engaged both him and his mentor Ralph Smeed in lively debate.  Below I've appended the first part of a column I wrote on libertarianism (www.home.roadrunner.com/~nickgier/libchristian.htm

I remember a column that Smeed wrote for "The Idahonian" (former name of the Daily News). The title was "Bid the Gildings be Fruitful," a great little piece on the dangers of regulating, for him, the sacred free market.  Paradoxically, one can save market economy only after you castrate the bulls of Wall Street and Crawford, Texas.  The near collapse of libertarian Iceland, Ireland, and the Baltic States and the continued smooth performance in all categories of Social Democratic Europe is proof that the Third Way between Communism and Cowboy Capitalism is the only way to go.  See all my columns on the glories of the Third Way at www.home.roadrunner.home/~nickgier/ThirdWay.htm  

Next week I will sing the praises of Social Democratic Germany, currently growing at a 9 percent vs. 1.6 percent for the U.S.

>From my column on the contradiction of a Christian libertarianism:

I first learned about the term “libertarianism” during the Idaho Congressional campaign of 1972.  Steve Symms, whose only claim to fame was unseating Sen. Frank Church in the election of 1980, called himself a libertarian as he ran on the Republican ticket in the First District.  We became acquainted and engaged in a feisty but friendly debate, mainly through letters. 
I’ll never forget a great motto that I learned from Symms. It goes something like this: “A liberal will let you do anything with your body, but not everything you want to do with your money.  A conservative will allow you to do anything you want with your money, but not anything you want to do with your body.  A libertarian will allow you to do anything you want with both your body and your money.”  The point of this of course is to show that only the libertarians have a consistent political philosophy, one based on maximizing personal liberty.

Most people don’t know that Symms was pro-choice at that time and also danced around other libertarian issues such as decriminalizing drug use and prostitution.  He learned very quickly that most libertarian positions did not set well with the Idaho electorate, so he dropped the “body liberty” side of the motto above and called himself a “limited government conservative” for the rest of his quite undistinguished political career.

Yours for a balance of liberty, equality, and community,

---- Art Deco <deco at moscow.com> wrote: 
> If in the very unlikely chance there is a hell, Smeed will be there if only for helping to launch Steve Symms.
> w.
>   ----- Original Message ----- 
>   From: Chuck Kovis 
>   To: lfalen ; vision2020 at moscow.com 
>   Sent: Thursday, September 09, 2010 10:58 AM
>   Subject: Re: [Vision2020] Ralph Smeed
>   And Ralph was personally responsible for the total destruction of  Caldwell
>   for the last 50 years.  The guy was a gadfly with a stupid message.  He
>   wasn't a conservative.  He was a Milton Friedman libertarian who never saw a
>   chance to crap on anything that had to do with government, as long as it 
>   didn't involve him and his pocket book.  Look at the mess he created out by 
>   the freeway and the Franklin interchange.  I, for one, won't cut this guy 
>   any slack.  Chuck Kovis
>   ----- Original Message ----- 
>   From: "lfalen" <lfalen at turbonet.com>
>   To: <vision2020 at moscow.com>
>   Sent: Thursday, September 09, 2010 10:36 AM
>   Subject: [Vision2020] Ralph Smeed
>   > Some of you may know or have heard of Ralph Smeed. He  passed away tuesday 
>   > afternoon of Cancer. He was a long time activist for conservative causes 
>   > and helped launch the political career of Steve Symes.
>   > Roger
>   >
>   > =======================================================
>   > List services made available by First Step Internet,
>   > serving the communities of the Palouse since 1994.
>   >               http://www.fsr.net
>   >          mailto:Vision2020 at moscow.com
>   > ======================================================= 
>   =======================================================
>    List services made available by First Step Internet, 
>    serving the communities of the Palouse since 1994.   
>                  http://www.fsr.net                       
>             mailto:Vision2020 at moscow.com
>   =======================================================

More information about the Vision2020 mailing list