|Chairperson||Martha Van Ghent|
|Founded||December 6, 2009|
|Disbanded||April 9, 2011|
|Predecessor||Liberal Party (LP)|
|Successor||Social Democratic Party (SDP)|
|Former name(s)||Walden Libertarian Party (WLP, until August 5 2010)|
|Spectrum||progressive centrism (center-left)|
|Close to||CPL.nm, LAP, Labour|
|Far from||CCPL, IGP|
Walden was a Lovian socially progressive environmentalist political party that held two to four seats in the 2010 Congress. Originally founded as the Liberal Party in 2009 by Laurence McKinley, the party was reformed into the Walden Libertarian Party by Andy McCandless. Since then, the party swifted from classical liberalist and capitalist to progressive libertarian and environmentalist. The party was named after the famous book Walden by Henry David Thoreau. In August 2010, its name was shortened to "Walden" and the party adopted a more social manifesto, leaving behind classical liberal dogma and free market theories. Walden is the second largest party in Congress. In April 2011, Walden was succeeded by the SDP.
Walden's national headquarters were located on 10 Freedom Avenue, Downtown, Noble City. The party had its own community house, being the Walden Home in Long Road, Noble City. The party's slogan was "Simplify, simplify!", after Henry David Thoreau. Members of Walden were known as Waldeners in Lovia.
Liberal Party Edit
The party was founded as the Liberal Party in November 2009, by Laurence McKinley. At his speech on November 20, 2009, Laurence McKinley declared what the ideology of his party should be. He remarked the following points of view as necessary: civil liberties, a free market and good relations with the United States.
A magazine that is published by George Mithrăndir at the Mithrăndir’s House is the Literary Liberal (LL), which deals with both literature and the politics and philosophy in Lovia and Noble City, and its views usually resemble those of the political party. The magazine, however, was never authorized by the Liberal Party.
Reform into the WLP Edit
In December 2010, Andy McCandless reformed it into the Walden Libertarian Party. On December the 6th of 2009, it fused with Pierlot McCrooke's NKU party, becoming the nation's second largest political party. However, after a couple of days the NKU members, of which Pierlot McCrooke is the best known, left the Walden Libertarian Party and joined other parties.
Federal and mid-term elections Edit
The first Lovian elections in which the Walden Libertarian Party participated, were the January 2010 Federal Elections. The elections began with the candidacies of Andy McCandless and Edward Hannis. The WLP joined the Coalition LD+WLP, in which McCandless was the common PM candidate. The coalition, however, did not work out as wished, and both parties went their own way by mid-January. The lack of coherence within the Liberal Democrats is the most frequently cited reason for the coalition's failure. By the end of the elections, McCandless, Harris and the new party member Pierlot McCrooke (who had already been a member in late 2009) were elected to Congress.
In May 2010, Martha Van Ghent announced her candidacy in the 2010 Mid-terms. By the second week of the elections, Van Ghent was leading the polls. Finally, she led the polls together with LD candidate Percival E. Galahad. After the elections, the party's share in Congress, however, had shrunk to 18.75%, due to the admission of five other independent or one-man party MOTCs.
Government and Congress Edit
From February 1st 2010 to March 28, the WLP faction voted in favor of all bills that passed, and opposed all bills that were not passed. 92% of the votes cast by WLP members were in line with the majority of Congress. Party leader McCandless voted along the Congressial majority on all proposals, a record only shared with King Dimitri I of Lovia and Lars Washington (LD). It could therefore be argued that the Walden Libertarian Party was, at the time, one of the government-side factions in Congress.
June 26th, Andy McCandless proposed the Green Energy Act in Congress, a bill to prohibit the production, import and export of all energy that is not fully sustainable. The bill was passed July 4th by 90.91% of all voting members (five members did not vote).
The Waldeners also supported the 2010 State Reform Plan by King Dimitri and helped it pass easily.
Namechange and swing to the left Edit
Near the end of July 2010, Chairman McCandless proposed to reform the party into a more socially engaged and less dogmatic libertarian party. McCandless proposed the party would become an "enlightened social ecological party with great respect for individual liberties." Several prominent Lovian non-members praised the plans. Among others, Jon Johnson (CPL.nm) hailed the changes and expressed the wish to "work a little closer in the future [in Congress]."
The party top has agreed to abridge the party's name to "Walden". The namechange took place August 6, whereas the manifesto change - swinging to the left of the political spectrum - was completed by the end of the same week.
During the ongoing reform discussions, Marcus Villanova from the Labor Party (formerly LLCP) joined the Walden party. As a result, Walden became one of the two largest factions in Congress, together with the Liberal Democrats, each with four out of sixteen members.
Soon after the manifesto changes were announced and the party counted four members, King Dimitri said to "have a great notion that Walden is in its flourishing days." The Noble City Times and The Daily Sylvanian noticed the party's regained strength and vitality in an August 7 article. After the Liberal Democrats fell apart, and before NLS member Ferenc Szóhad joined the CPL.nm, Walden was Lovia's largest party by number of MOTCs.
State elections, 2010 Edit
|This section is under construction.|
Walden was the only party to have a candidate for the October 2010 State Elections in each state. Martha Van Ghent has announced to run for Governor in Sylvania, Andy McCandless in Oceana, and Marcus Villanova in Clymene. Justin Abrahams will challenge Medvedev and Red in Kings, and Pierlot McCrooke runs for Governor in Seven. Walden expects "to get at least two Walden Governors elected."
September 16th, chairman McCandless announced to step down as party chairman, and proposed that Van Ghent took over the function. The party platform unanimously approved of the plan. Van Ghent now is the only female chairperson of a major political party in Lovia. McCandless has become the Chief Ideologist and temporary leader of the Young Waldeners. Villanova will take over the youth organization after its first weeks.
The Walden Election Council was a thinktank off all Walden members used to discuss issues, polititcs, and running for political postitions. It was set up by Marcus Villanova and its meetings took place at the Walden Home. The council had since proven productive when in use.
In late 2010 and early 2011, Walden entered a decline after its growth. Many members, most notably Villanova and Hannis, left to join other parties. Andy McCandless, one of the party founders, then descended into poor health in January and resigned as Governor of Oceana and Member of Congress. Martha van Ghent, then-chairwoman, decided to retire from politics in March. Justin Abrahams, the only remaining senior member, became chairman. With most members being inactive, Abrahams turned the party into the Social Democratic Party in April by adding "a little more red". Eventually, the SDP merged to become the Labour Party. Most former Walden members are now part of either Labour or the Green Party.
Overview of election results Edit
- 2010 Federal Elections - third party
- 2010 Mid-term Elections - shared first party
- 2010 State Elections (Fall) - first party
- Votes for Walden:
- Clymene - Marcus Villanova: 57.1% (elected Gov.)
- Kings - Justin Abrahams: 46.2% (elected Deputy)
- Oceana - Andy McCandless: 52.9% (elected Gov.)
- Sylvania - Martha Van Ghent: 72.7% (elected Gov.)
- Votes for Walden:
- 2011 Federal Elections
- Votes for Walden: n/a
Prior to August 2010, the party described itself as a progressive libertarian-environmentalist party. According to political scientist Yuri Medvedev, the party was to be considered progressive centrist.
After Walden's ideology change, members regarded themselves as progressives and environmentalist with a strong notion of liberty and social engagement. They had been described as social liberals or modern liberals, center-leftists and even social democrats by some.
Introduction to libertarianism Edit
Libertarianism is a term adopted by a broad spectrum of political philosophies which advocate the maximization of individual liberty and the minimization or even abolition of the state. Libertarians embrace viewpoints across that spectrum, ranging from minarchist to openly anarchist.
According to the Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy:
- Libertarians are committed to the belief that individuals, and not states or groups of any other kind, are both ontologically and normatively primary; that individuals have rights against certain kinds of forcible interference on the part of others; that liberty, understood as non-interference, is the only thing that can be legitimately demanded of others as a matter of legal or political right; that robust property rights and the economic liberty that follows from their consistent recognition are of central importance in respecting individual liberty; that social order is not at odds with but develops out of individual liberty; that the only proper use of coercion is defensive or to rectify an error; that governments are bound by essentially the same moral principles as individuals; and that most existing and historical governments have acted improperly insofar as they have utilized coercion for plunder, aggression, redistribution, and other purposes beyond the protection of individual liberty.
Libertarianism.com describes libertarianism this way:
- Libertarianism is, as the name implies, the belief in liberty. Libertarians strive for the best of all worlds - a free, peaceful, abundant world where each individual has the maximum opportunity to pursue his or her dreams and to realize his full potential. The core idea is simply stated, but profound and far-reaching in its implications. Libertarians believe that each person owns his own life and property, and has the right to make his own choices as to how he lives his life - as long as he simply respects the same right of others to do the same.
- Another way of saying this is that libertarians believe you should be free to do as you choose with your own life and property, as long as you don't harm the person and property of others. Libertarianism is thus the combination of liberty (the freedom to live your life in any peaceful way you choose), responsibility (the prohibition against the use of force against others, except in defense), and tolerance (honoring and respecting the peaceful choices of others). Live and let live. The Golden Rule. The non-initiation of force.
Since McCandless took up the party leadership in late 2009, the party has been outspoken libertarian. The WLP stood for a guaranteed free market, legal simplification, expansion of the civil liberties and ultimate protection of those liberties and rights, including the right to property.
Traces in the current program Edit
Although the party abandoned classical liberal and libertarian dogma in the summer of 2010, some traces of its former ideology can still be found in their manifesto. Walden's wish to protect and expand civil liberties stayed in the program, as well as the wish to simplify the law and the political system. Rather often, Waldeners have opposed bills in the Second Chamber citing unnecessary complexity.
It is believed, too, that the Waldeners did not fully abandon their desire to refrain from government interference in the personal lives of Lovians. Matthew LeBrun, a Blackburn University political analyst, remarked:
- During the libertarian period (December 2009 - July 2010), the WLP stood for absolute minarchism, at least theoretically. Actually, they choose to take part in the federal government, appoint party members to national institutions, and even expand the interstate highways using federal tax money. On other ocassions, though, they stood firm in their minarchism: no government money and time was to be spent on activities that could just as well be done by private organizations and individuals.
- Now, Walden - as a progressive environmentalist party - has chosen to move their minarchist limit up. It is now okay to support government efforts and state-owned and operated companies when it benefits the people. Walden has become a pragmatic party of the people, rather than the dogmatic minarchist party from the earlier days.
The libertarianism adopted by the former WLP, and of which there are still traces, was never a right-wing doctrine. Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy notes that libertarianism is not a right-wing doctrine for at least two reasons:
- First, on social—rather than economic—issues, libertarianism tends to be “left-wing”. It opposes laws that restrict consensual and private sexual relationships between adults (e.g., gay sex, non-marital sex, and deviant sex), laws that restrict drug use, laws that impose religious views or practices on individuals, and compulsory military service.
- Second, in addition to the better-known version of libertarianism — right-libertarianism — there is also a version known as "left-libertarianism". Both endorse full self-ownership, but they differ with respect to the powers agents have to appropriate unappropriated natural resources [...]. Left-libertarianism [...] holds that unappropriated natural resources belong to everyone in some egalitarian manner. It can, for example, require those who claim rights over natural resources to make a payment to others for the value of those rights. This can provide the basis for a kind of egalitarian redistribution.
Like many libertarians, Leonard Read rejected the concepts of "left" and "right" libertarianism, calling them "authoritarian." Libertarian author and politician Harry Browne wrote: "We should never define Libertarian positions in terms coined by liberals or conservatives – nor as some variant of their positions. We are not fiscally conservative and socially liberal. We are Libertarians, who believe in individual liberty and personal responsibility on all issues at all times. You can depend on us to treat government as the problem, not the solution."
Introduction to environmentalism Edit
Wikipedia defines environmentalism as follows: "Environmentalism is a broad philosophy and social movement regarding concerns for environmental conservation and improvement of the state of the environment." Thoreau, after whose book (Walden) the party was named, also played a vital role in the development of environmentalism in the United States: "The US movement expanded in the 1800s, out of concerns for protecting the natural resources of the West, with individuals such as John Muir and Henry David Thoreau making key philosophical contributions. Thoreau was interested in peoples' relationship with nature and studied this by living close to nature in a simple life. He published his experiences in the book Walden, which argues that people should become intimately close with nature." In Lovia, Walden is the only major political party actively incorporating green politics in their manifesto. Other parties from both sides of the spectrum have recently endorsed a more green policy too.
Introduction to progressivism Edit
Walden's progressivism can best be defined as "a political attitude favoring or advocating changes or reform. Progressivism is often viewed in opposition to conservative or reactionary ideologies." The progressivism that Walden adheres is therefore not equal to American Progressivism, the leading American ideology during the period 1890-1920. What is shared, is a common wish for government reform and the protection of the neadiest in society.
Since the party's August 2010 swing to the left, their progressivism expanded to include a strong sense of social justice and equality. There is a likeness to social democracy in the newly adopted manifesto. The chief goal of modern social democracy is to reform capitalism to align it with the ethical ideals of social democracy while maintaining the capitalist mode of production, rather than creating an alternative socialist economic system. Like social-democratic parties, Walden supports a mixed economy (consisting of both private enterprise and publicly owned or subsidized programs of education, universal health care, child care and related social services for all citizens), an extensive social security system, and secular, progressive ethics.
- Protect! Protect! Walden wants the protection of our natural environment by means of legal action. By protecting our environment, we safeguard our personal liberties and our childrens' future. In concrete, this means that only "green energy" may be produced and distributed, that more green areas should be protected, that the federal government should restrict oversize construction plans, that manufacturing companies should be more energy and environment-conscious, that Lovians should be made conscious of the value of clean drinking water, etc. Walden supports legal action as well as campaigns as means to achieve this.
Foreign policy Edit
- Neutrality The Waldeners generally support international neutrality. We do not wish to interfere with foreign politics or wars, nor do we wish to bind ourselves to the world's superpowers by joining international alliances.
- Isolationism Walden wants to keep our ties with California, Hawaii and the Mexican West Coast good and friendly. We however do not want any US interference in Lovia.
- Pacifism Walden is a pacifist party. Global peace as well as peace with our fellow citizens is crucial to a person's quality of life. By promoting peace across the globe, Walden hopes to give people in developing nations the chance to establish a democratic state with social justice.
- Ecological efforts Walden is willing to cooperate internationally in environmental efforts. An international issue cannot be dealt with on our own.
- Immigration Walden is contented with the current soft immigration policy.
Liberties and civil rights Edit
- Ultimate protection Civil liberties and personal freedom are highly regarded by the Walden party. Walden wants ultimate protection of those liberties. Therefore, we urgently want to reform and extend Article 2 of the Constitution.
- Legalization Both abortion and euthanasia need to be legalized. Walden does not support all-round legalization: we want a well-thought bill that resolves difficult cases and that keeps age and health conditions in account. Legal simplification does not mean we ignore medical sophistication.
- End discrimination! Walden does not tolerate any discrimination. Though same-sex marriage is not legally forbidden, we want to enshrine the rights of homosexual, bisexual and other non-heterosexual Lovians in the Constitution. Walden will team up with the other progressive parties in Congress to realize this.
- Women Walden is totally pro gender-neutrality and guaranteeing women's rights. Our Member of the Congress Martha Van Ghent will represent Waldener women in Congress.
- Violation of property right It is vital to our society that the people's right to property is fully respected.
Social services and education Edit
- Accessibility Walden believes, like Lovia's other progressive parties, in the necessity of accessible education and health care. The Secretary of Welfare, Waldener Martha Van Ghent, will do everything to organize the health care system more efficiently and accurately.
- Education According to Walden, Congress should spend more on education.
- Social security The party is eager to cooperate with other people in Congress to lay the foundations of a broad and ethical social security system in Lovia. Walden believes it is the task of the community to create opportunities for the least benefited in society.
Law and state reform Edit
- Simplify! Simplify! The party has fully supported the recent efforts to simplify and correct the laws of Lovia. These reforms have proven effective and have made the law more accessible to many.
- States Since the states have been reinvigorated, they also need the power to perform their duties carefully. Walden believes states such have some well-described executive powers.
Market and economy Edit
- Mixed economy As of August 2010, Walden thinks a mixed economy, consisting of both state-owned and operated companies in key industries and private businesses, will benefit the Lovians.
- Energy companies Core businesses such as energy production and distribution are crucial. If (partially) owned and operated by the federal state, "profit" can be used to lower the electricity bills. To Walden, it is important that companies that receive government money, are run by the government.
- Transport companies Walden believes railway companies ought to be united and (partially) bought by the federal government.
- Basic tax rates To provide for necessary government services, Walden deems it best to maintain a moderate tax rate.
- Moderate progressive taxation The party believes moderate progressive taxes (taxing the wealthy heavier than the poor) fit within an egalitarian framework.
- Tax on polluting vehicles Walden wants a tax on motorized vehicles with polluting motors and perhaps also a tax on fuel consumption.
- Moral taxation The party generally supports taxing items which inhere health risks, such as tobacco and alcohol consumption, to fund the state's health care system.
Conservative politicians have criticized Walden and some of its members for "polarizing and spreading hatred towards the Right."
A recent controversy concerned an election message from Marcus Villanova, a prominent member of the party. Villanova said, referring to CCPL's association with rightist politics: "A vote for CCPL means that somone will be diprived of a simple right and a vote for rascism." Members of the CCPL criticized the statements on the election poster accompanying Villanova's speech. CPL.nm and indepedents did likewise in reference to statements about the CPL.nm and the CCPL. Waldener Andy McCandless stated he did not consider the message official election propoganda. Party chairwoman Martha Van Ghent said the following on the matter: "Anyhow, Marcus is a great Congressman. One of the best of the current Congress, I believe. But alright, he made a poster which is not entirely great. Okay. That's a pity and I'm sure he'll do better next time. At least, he's got a good consciousness and good ethics." In response, the leaders have been called lax, ambiguous and hypocrite for not disapproving the serious accusations which have been done by member Marcus Villanova towards political opponents, without any valid arguments.
In the Villanova exchange of votes controversy of November 2010, Marcus Villanova was heavily criticizedfor trying to make a deal with Alexandru Latin in the State Elections of October. Marcus offered his vote for Oos Wes Ilava in Oceana, if Latin would support Walden in the Federal Elections and at proposals in Congress. Marcus was rejected and was accused of attempts of electoral fraud. There is no law in force that prohibits the exchange of votes in return for Congressial support. At the same time, Pierlot McCrooke, then still Waldener, was accused by the conservative and formerly fascist politician Ygo August Donia of wanting to stage a coup. McCrooke left Walden after the incident and joined the CPL.nm.
Notable members Edit
Election propaganda and videos Edit
- See also: Coalition LD+WLP for election propaganda during the coalition period.
During the summer of 2010, Walden established itself as a modern media-oriented party, being the first Lovian party to direct and release its own advertising videos. Marcus Villanova and Andy McCandless each created Walden videos, of which some were extremely well received.
Headquarters and offices Edit
- Clymene: Sofasi Apartments at 12 History Avenue, Downtown Sofasi (Ran by Marcus Villanova)
- Kings: Walden State Office at 4 Airport Avenue, Old Port, Newhaven
- Oceana: Walden State Office at 6 School Street, East Hills, Hurbanova
- Seven: Elgin Offices at 8 Elgin Avenue, Kinley
- Sylvania: Walden building at 10 Freedom Avenue, Downtown Noble City (Ran by Marcus Villanova)
List of chairmen and women Edit
|Chairperson||Image||From||Until||Party / Party name|
|Laurence McKinley||November 2009||December 5, 2009|| |
|Andy McCandless||December 6, 2009||September 16, 2010|| |
Walden Libertarian Party
Walden (from August 6, 2010)
| Martha Van Ghent|
|September 16, 2010||2011|| |
References and sources Edit
- ↑ Noble, Dimitri, "Talk:Walden", Wikination, http://nation.wikia.com/index.php?title=Talk:Walden&diff=68263&oldid=68260 2010-08-06.
- ↑ Noble, Dimitri, "TNCT News", Wikination, http://nation.wikia.com/index.php?title=Template:TNCT_News&diff=68336&oldid=67725 2010-08-07.
- ↑ McCrooke left the party after being elected as a Waldener. In April 2010, he resigned from Congress.
- ↑ This result is without the votes received by Marcus Villanova, who'd join the party in July 2010. The combined results of Martha Van Ghent and Marcus Villanova would have been 19 out of 55 votes, which equals 34.55% of all votes.
- ↑ Zwolinski, Matt, "Libertarianism", Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy, http://www.iep.utm.edu/l/libertar.htm, retrieved 2008-08-09.
- ↑ NN, "What Is Libertarianism?", Libertarianism.com, http://www.libertarianism.com/what-it-is.htm, retrieved 2010-01-25.
- ↑ Vallentyne, Peter, "Libertarianism", Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/libertarianism/, retrieved 2010-01-25.
- ↑ "Libertarianism", Wikipedia.org, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Libertarianism, retrieved 2010-01-25.
- ↑ "Environmentalism", Wikipedia.org, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Environmentalism, retrieved 2010-01-28.
- ↑ "Environmentalism", Wikipedia.org, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Environmentalism, retrieved 2010-01-28.
- ↑ "Progressivism", Wikipedia.org, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Progressivism, retrieved 2010-05-29.
- ↑ Kornai, Janos, Socialism and the Market: Conceptual Clarification, 2005.
- ↑ Source: Speakers' Corner, December 11, 2010.
- ↑ Talk Walden Poster.