For 2016, as identified by a site called The Liberty Conservative. This list is compiled by Shane Trejo.
As you might surmise from a site with such a name, part of their mission is to inform and educate their readers on liberty informed by traditional values. I would copy from their site, but they admonish that this can be done only with permission (as the “Copyright” date on the site is “2016,” maybe I can skirt this issue…but I won’t). As they don’t want to share, neither do I; if you want to find the article, you will have to search for it.
As the site is only interested in informing and educating their readers, I can understand why such limitations are placed on their content. I prefer writers, entities, and organizations that make all of their content freely available; such as these demonstrate that they a) understand that the best way to build an audience is to give away content, and b) the best way to spread your content (if it is any good) and your ideas (if these are any good) is to give it away.
The Mises Institute is the best example of this within the liberty movement of which I am aware; books, audio, video, daily articles – all available for free, all freely distributed. Alas, the Institute did not make this winners or losers list. As the Institute is a liberty winner every year, I guess I can understand why.
With that preamble out of the way, and with the difficulty of writing this post while honoring the site’s desire to not use content without permission, I offer the following. I will suggest: the list seems to be more of a list of winners and losers from the recent presidential campaign, but anyway….
Milo Yiannopoulos. Shane identifies Milo’s less-than-conservative social and sexual preferences, and at the same time states openly that he is the most influential figure for the conservative movement. Given that conservative is prominent in the name of this web site, I do not understand how Milo fits in.
I really don’t know much about Milo; I guess we don’t walk in similar circles. I wrote something about him once, from an interview of him where he labeled libertarians as a joke, as children. Somehow, he is a winner for liberty?
To be transparent – I both agreed with and disagreed with Milo’s statement; some so-called libertarians are a joke, are children. To show how little I knew about Milo before reading about him on the winners list, I described that Milo was right in calling certain libertarians a joke and children. It turns out that Milo may be one of those I would put in the “joke” camp. Maybe one day I will take more time to learn about him; today isn’t that day.
Alex Jones. Alex is no libertarian. Yet Alex does great service for those interested in expanding liberty. No one else who focusses on exposing the hypocrisy, lies, warmongering, and false history of the United States government has achieved the popularity that he has achieved.
A key pillar in the move toward a more libertarian society is to discredit the state. No one does this better than Alex Jones. Nowhere does Shane recognize Jones for this, so I guess we agree but for different reasons.
Jack Hunter. Anyone associated with Rand Paul’s strategy since he came on the political stage could easily be placed on the losers list. Anyone associated with claiming that Rand’s strategy was the right one belongs here as well (Mark Skousen and Jeff Tucker come to mind). Anyone associated with destroying the momentum built by Ron Paul is a loser for liberty. In fact, one wonders why Rand Paul didn’t make the list.
I hope my position on this is clear.
Glenn Beck. Beck was a loser for liberty well before 2016. Why he would be considered as a candidate for such a list this year is beyond my understanding.
The Lessons of 2016
Shane’s, not mine. Shane recognizes that this year saw the rise of a populist right-wing. He sees an opportunity for libertarians to grow with this.
With this in mind…Alex Jones, certainly. Milo? I do not believe his lifestyle will sell in the conservative, populist right-wing.