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L. Neil Smith's
Number 620, May 22, 2011

"We understand that we're all living in a police state"

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Statement by the Libertarian Alliance On the Demise of the Libertarian Party of the United Kingdom
by Sean Gabb

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Special to The Libertarian Enterprise

I am writing on behalf of the Libertarian Alliance and of its Executive Committee, to express fraternal regrets at the demise, announced yesterday, of the Libertarian Party of the United Kingdom. Several of our friends were involved in the formation of the Libertarian Party, and we know that they worked hard to make their party a success. We sympathise with their natural disappointment over the failure of their efforts, but do urge them to form or to join other organisations, and to continue putting the libertarian case.

We would prefer to end our statement here. However, there is an obvious similarity of name between a libertarian party and the Libertarian Alliance. For the avoidance of doubt, therefore, we make these further statements:

First, the Libertarian Alliance was established in 1979, the Libertarian Party in 2007.

Second, at no time has any Officer of the Libertarian Alliance been an Officer of the Libertarian Party. Nor has the opposite been the case.

Third, while the ends of both have been the bringing about of a libertarian society, the means of each organisation have always been different. The Libertarian Party sought to achieve political power via the ballot box. The Libertarian Alliance has, during the past 32 years, been seeking to bring about a long term shift of ideology within the intellectual classes. There has been no necessary conflict between these chosen means. At the same time, they have been different, and sometimes in actual conflict.

Whatever its history, whatever its current prospects, no organisation is guaranteed a future. This being said, I declare that, failing some unexpected misfortune, the Libertarian Alliance will continue to put the case for liberty in its widest and most radical sense. There may or may not be another Libertarian Party. There is, and will be, the Libertarian Alliance.

Sean Gabb is Director of The Libertarian Alliance (Carbon Positive since 1979)


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