Podcaster Jason Stapleton Issues Ultimatum To Loyal Listeners, Declares War Against Principled Libertarians

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Podcaster Jason Stapleton recently took his loyal listeners to task in an unhinged rant released on his group’s Facebook page this past weekend. In his screed, Stapleton issued a simple ultimatum for the individuals in his group: bow to the state or face his wrath.

“Some of you are nothing but agitators,” Stapleton proclaimed. “Arrogant, adult children who have nothing of value to add to this group or the liberty movement… Take caution in your posts and comments because any of the benefit of the doubt you might have received prior to today is gone.”

Anyone who deals with libertarians on a regular basis on social media or elsewhere can understand Stapleton’s frustrations. If this rant were merely a release valve after a stressful day, that would be one thing. Unfortunately, Stapleton’s rant is little more than a thinly-veiled cover for an aggressive policy of censorship against differing viewpoints.

In spite of Stapleton mentioning that he had respect for libertarian anarchists such as Tom Woods and Bob Murphy in his rant, Stapleton’s actual behavior displays a much different attitude than his talking points. Case in point, he banned a supporter from his group for having the audacity to ask an honest question of Lord Stapleton:

Attempting to justify going “Full Jackboot” on his listeners, Stapleton even resorted to Orwellian double-speak. “[This group is] a place for people to discuss and ideas, share stories and meet people of like mind,” Stapleton wrote. “It’s not a philosophical group and it sure isn’t a political activism group.”

It is hard to understand how someone could comply with this request since discussion or ideas aren’t welcomed if they are philosophical in nature or can promote the cause of liberty through the political process. The new confusing dichotomy of the Stapleton program and his group seems to be either submit or get the boot.

Here are some other comments made by Stapleton that display the depths in which he sunk in the midst of his pedantic meltdown:

In the pretext to this bizarre flame out, many former Jason Stapleton Show supporters were already in the process of an exodus from the Facebook group. According to them, it had become an increasingly hostile atmosphere toward libertarians in recent months. Stapleton preached unity, tolerance, and respect, but was never able to live up to his lofty rhetoric.

Former Administrators Speak Out

Sarah Copeland, Kim Schjang, and Cam Harless were once administrators in Jason Stapleton’s Facebook group. After discovering Stapleton’s podcast, they were excited to see what they thought was an articulate, unifying voice in the liberty movement.

Schjang had an especially close relationship with Stapleton because it was his show that turned her from a hardcore leftist social justice warrior to an anarcho-capitalist libertarian. A member of the LGBTQ community, Schjang was even inspired to run for Nevada State Senator in the Libertarian Party this year.

“The show was informative [in its early days], but the Facebook group was actually the key to growth because ideas were challenged by people at different points of their liberty journey. One day, I found out Jason had made me an administrator, which was an honor to me,” Schjang said.

The situation did not stay hunky dory for long. As Schjang developed intellectually as a libertarian, she came to embrace anarcho-capitalism. These radical ideas were promoted in large part by the great Ron Paul, who in spite of being a libertarian minarchist, certainly associated with many anarchists and sought out their console on economic matters very regularly.

“My policy personally as an administrator was, whether they are anarcho-capitalist or minarchist, you treat everyone with respect. I didn’t care what your philosophy was,” Schjang said. “You got the same treatment from me. I don’t treat anarcho-capitalists better than minarchists. The problem was, this was not Jason’s mode of operation.”

Schjang claims that her anarcho-capitalist views eventually resulted in her being shunned by Stapleton and his loyalists. Although Harless and Copeland are minarchist libertarians themselves, they echo Schjang’s concerns about Stapleton’s tone-deaf, arrogant, and hypocritical behavior.

“He’s reacting because there are a few out there who didn’t line up to lick his boots. He has to have control and I don’t believe for a second that he believes in the principles of liberty,” Harless said.

Stapleton’s podcast may be growing in stature and he can be a thoughtful advocate for the cause of liberty at certain times, but this brazen autocratic streak that is apparent in his actions certainly raises some red flags about his true motives and where he intends to lead his flock.

“The man who had brought me to libertarianism, I had come to realize, was only concerned about his own brand of libertarianism,” Schjang said. “He didn’t actually care about my journey as far as it made the pages of his one-time magazine look good.”

In a response to the change in tone from Stapleton, these three former administrators have collaborated on a podcast and a Facebook group of their own. Dubbed “Make Liberty Great Again,” they recently recorded their first episode, and will happily provide greener pastures to all of those individuals purged from Stapleton’s Facebook group.

“Stapleton had a rudimentary idea of what liberty means and decided to start a show that he could make money off of by emulating Rush Limbaugh. As it turns out, anyone who spent time reading or thinking about liberty outgrew him pretty quickly,” Harless said.

Liberty activists would be wise to continue their intellectual growth and progression, regardless of the monetary agenda of any self-serving interest out there.

Shane has been an activist for liberty-related causes for over 10 years. He is the Media Relations Director of the Republican Liberty Caucus of Michigan, State Director of the Michigan Tenth Amendment Center, and County Coordinator for Michigan Campaign for Liberty.

  • Patrick Ray

    Trollololol. What about Jason being free to run his show and his private group how he see’s fit? That group has always had the same rules. The only thing that changed were a handful of people that tried to tell a man how to run his business and his private group. So called Libertarians wanted to force an individual to change his rules, his message and his show to suit what they wanted….How Libertarian of those Libertarians.

    • Shane

      Freedom comes with accountability, Patrick. Just so you know.

      • Patrick Ray

        Accountability for what? Enforcing his own rules the same way they’ve always been enforced? There is no “freedom” on a private Facebook page or a private message board farther than the freedom the ownership has to run their brand and their group how they seem fit. If anyone lacks accountability it’s the people that can’t follow the rules.

        This is another example of why Libertarianism gets a bad rap. At the end of the day there’s a vocal minority that believes rules don’t apply to them because of a sense philosophical superiority. It IS childish, and disrespectful to others.

        • William Kensworth

          ”Accountability for what? Enforcing his own rules the same way they’ve always been enforced?”

          No, his rules are not the same way they’ve always been. That’s why actual libertarians are leaving his group en masse.

          ”There is no “freedom” on a private Facebook page or a private message board farther than the freedom the ownership has to run their brand and their group how they seem fit.”

          Oh my. We, as actors In the free market, can choose to associate or disassociate ourselves with a brand. Translation: we can criticize private businesses. I don;t see how that’s a violation of any libertarian principle.

          • Patrick Ray

            So Bill here is the Libertarian Police. Where can I go to take your test to determine if I’m an actual Libertarian? You sound pretty smart, bro.

            I’ve been in that group since before it was even 500 strong. Now it is 5000 strong. The only thing that has changed is how vocal those proclaiming to be “actual” Libertarians are. You’re the problem Bill, you and people like you that have taken a holier than thou attitude and pushed people like me away from your crap. I’m someone that was introduced to Austrian Economics and Libertarianism by physically walking into the Mises Library when I was bored one day. I have physically sat in that place and read more than you can possibly imagine, but you, you Bill are the true determiner of a “real” Libertarian. That’s why you’ll debate a wall, because your arrogance is right. People like me have found no value in mindless debates that do nothing to convert people to even the basics of our ideology. so we aren’t “real”. Got it, bro.

            You guys go ahead and scream and rant over a show and a Facebook group growing leaps and bounds over anything the rest of you have ever created. That’ll be good for things. Add it to your debated subject material and check back in a year and see how things are going.

          • William Kensworth

            ”So Bill here is the Libertarian Police. Where can I go to take your test to determine if I’m an actual Libertarian? You sound pretty smart, bro.”

            Do you adhere to the NAP? If so, you’re a libertarian.

            ”I’ve been in that group since before it was even 500 strong. Now it is 5000 strong. The only thing that has changed is how vocal those proclaiming to be “actual” Libertarians are.”

            Bullshit.
            “Arrogant, adult children who have nothing of value to add to this group or the liberty movement… Take caution in your posts and comments because any of the benefit of the doubt you might have received prior to today is gone.”
            -Jason Stapleton, hours before kicking out dozens of dissenters and threatening to kick out dozens more, Including myself. I told him to go fuck himself and left the group.

            ”People like me have found no value in mindless debates that do nothing to convert people to even the basics of our ideology. so we aren’t “real”.”

            I’ve ”converted” two minarchists In the last 2 months. Pretty proud of that.

            ”You guys go ahead and scream and rant over a show and a Facebook group growing leaps and bounds over anything the rest of you have ever created.”

            LewRockwell.com, thefreethoughtproject, the Tom Woods show/Contra Krugman, Stefan Molyneux, the Mises Institute, Ron Paul and his various podcasts & websites, policethepolice, etc. All of these podcasts and websites are run by principled libertarians and have a larger audience than Jason’s show.

          • William Kensworth

            I don’t have any beef with minarchists. I myself have been on the fence for years, and I still am In a way. What I do have a problem with Is Jason Stapleton acting like supreme dictator of Libertopia. One day he uploads a podcast with Bob Murphy and the next he’s kicking out dozens of evil Rothbardians from him group for daring to question his opinions. At this point, he’s got more tolerance for socialists than for us, so fuck him.

    • redacted

      How fucking stupid. Yes, he’s not making anything that he should be physically punished for or anything like this. And I do not see anyone arguing for this. Are you saying that people cannot criticize others or how they behave? That you cannot criticize how others use what they own because they own it? Ridiculous, it is perfectly in accordance with private law or libertarianism to criticize others and how they use their stuff.

      “So called Libertarians wanted to force an individual to change his rules, his message and his show to suit what they wanted”

      Who wanted to force this guy to change his rules how?

  • From your article: “unhinged rant”, “pedantic meltdown”, “bizarre flame out”, “brazen autocratic streak”, and “self-serving”. Clearly an agenda-driven opinion thinly disguised as news. Any time I read an article so full of ad hominems I dismiss it outright. Up your game.

    • Is there anything you can point to as false within the article? Please be specific.

    • Your article relied on argumentum ad hominem to reinforce your points. Good journalism shouldn’t require that. Your arguments could be completely valid, but your reliance on ad hominem attacks seriously detract from any points you’ve made to the point that I question the validity of anything you’ve written.

    • The article relies on Jason Stapleton’s own childish attacks to point out what a hypocrite he is.

    • Richard, it comes as no surprise to be that you weren’t able to point to anything specific. You should be angry with Stapleton’s offensive comments, not with my accurate description of them.

    • You’ve missed my point twice Shane. Perhaps you should do some reading on the topic of informal logical fallacies.

      My OP gave specific examples of the informal fallacy of argumentum ad hominem. I read your article to understand more about what occurred and to get both sides, but your article was clearly biased. I don’t look to journalism for biased reporting; I’m able to reach my own conclusion, thank you very much. Think this horse has been sufficiently beaten.

    • No, you didn’t give any specific examples. you pointed to my accurate descriptions. for whatever reason, the descriptions triggered you rather than jason’s callous and indefensible remarks. please don’t try to muddy the waters to get the focus off of stapleton’s comments. these types of attempts at deflection are just pathetic.

    • Maybe it’s because you’re convinced that your descriptions such as “unhinged rant” are accurate. Others might think it’s an ad hominem. Something to think about if you’re trying to persuade readers.

      http://www.fallacyfiles.org/adhomine.html

    • Those are aggressive descriptors, not ad hominem attacks.

  • This article has nothing to do with liberty, and oh look…nobody cares about your drama.

    • This is not a particularly good attempt at damage control.

    • Is that what happened in somebody’s private FB page…damage?

    • Stapleton’s words to his supporters speak for themselves.

    • I had no problem with them. They had zero effect on me, and didn’t apply to me…at all.

    • Stop lying. You wouldn’t have made your initial comment if it didn’t matter to you.

    • And yet I’m still listening to his podcast and enjoying the discussions within the group…because it somehow matters to me that Jason had a problem with a few retards within his private chat group. Get a grip, man. Nobody cares. Was this supposed to generate traffic or something? Is that what this is, a marketing ploy? I guess I don’t get it.

    • sounds like you have a bad case of Stockholm Syndrome. best wishes getting over that

    • Lol, yeah it’s really keeping me up nights. I may need to see a shrink about my blind loyalty that’s preventing me from being objective in the face of Jason reacting to behavior within his own group that he feels is disrupting the forum he created for discussing liberty, and his own content. Hey, best of luck generating traffic over crap nobody cares about.

  • Complete overreaction to what went down. But hey, I guess anything for clicks, right?

  • darrell bublitz

    I am in the group, I read and commented on the post in question, and this was a gross over dramatization of the situation.

    Jason is passionate about what he believes. We all are. Things get heated at times when you are trying to do what you think is right and you feel like people are hijacking your efforts. Although I can admit that there could have been a certain level of tact used, I do not fault him for being passionate. He is human like the rest of us.

  • You guys are just pissed that you can’t do what he does so you bash, berate and undermine him with this nonsense…. Wait till Jason Stapleton finds out. He’ll light your asses up like the Rocafeller Xmas tree! The Jason Stapleton Program

    • In the process, he’ll talk about how awesome and smart he is.

  • Jason *is* becoming a bit of a bitch.

    I’ve listened to every show for over a year, and frequented the FB group daily.

    Yesterday was the last for both.

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