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The Secret History of Libertarianism

By Hart Williams  Posted by Melinda Pillsbury-Foster (about the submitter)       (Page 1 of 8 pages)   No comments
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Unlimited Terms of Endearment Part XXIII: The Secret Life of Duncan Scott
(Part the first)
Duncan Scott is a good Republican, to all outward appearances. He's the chair of the Flathead County Republican Party, and a founder and president of the Pachyderm Club. He practices law just outside of Glacier National Park.

In 2000, in New Mexico, he was George Bush's lawyer, tapped by the campaign to file suit on behalf of Bush to have all of New Mexico's ballots impounded, when it looked as though Bush had won New Mexico (he later lost narrowly in the recount). He was even a Republican state senator from Albuquerque. His Republican bona fides were beyond question.

But Duncan Scott had been quietly living a double life.


Originally a Montana boy, Scott graduated with the class of 1974 from Great Falls High School in Great Falls, Montana. That year, the top 20 hit songs were:

1. The Way We Were, Barbra Streisand
2. Seasons In The Sun, Terry Jacks
3. Love's Theme, Love Unlimited Orchestra
4. Come And Get Your Love, Redbone
5. Dancing Machine, Jackson 5
6. The Loco-Motion, Grand Funk Railroad
8. The Streak, Ray Stevens
9. Bennie And The Jets, Elton John
10. One Hell Of A Woman, Mac Davis
11. Until You Come Back To Me, Aretha Franklin
12. Jungle Boogie, Kool and The Gang
13. Midnight At The Oasis, Maria Muldaur
14. You Make Me Feel Brand New, Stylistics
15. Show And Tell, Al Wilson
16. Spiders And Snakes, Jim Stafford
17. Rock On, David Essex
18. Sunshine On My Shoulder, John Denver
19. Sideshow, Blue Magic
20. Hooked On A Feeling, Blue Swede
21. Billy Don't Be A Hero, Bo Donaldson and The Heywoods

[OK: 21, but what lover of music could possibly omit "Billy Don't Be A Hero"? - HW]

When Duncan Scott graduated from high school, Montana was 91% White, with about 6 percent Native Americans and hardly anyone anything else:

Montana US Census 1970

* White: 90.6%
* Black of African American: 0.3%
* American Indian/Alaska Native: 6.2%
* Asian: 0.5%
* Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islands: 0.1%
* Hispanic/Latino (of any race): 2.0%
* Two or More Races: 1.7%

But, to be fair, Montana was making steady progress. In 1910, Montana had been 113.2 percent white, according to the U.S. Census Bureau*. So in a mere six decades a 23% shift in the ethnographic breakdown of the state had occurred.

[*I know this sounds crazy, but that's what the official document says: 113.2 percent, and who am I to argue with the authority of the United States Census Bureau? - HW ]

The winter of Duncan Scott's freshman year in high school, the Libertarian Party was founded a couple states down the Rockies, in Westminister, Colorado -- just outside Denver and not quite all the way to Boulder -- in the home of David Fraser Nolan on December 11, 1971 -- his original vision composed of equal parts Robert Heinlein and Ayn Rand.

[Nolan is running this year, BTW, as the Libertarian candidate for Tucson, Arizona's 6th Congressional District seat - HW]

On August 8th of the summer that Duncan Scott graduated from Great Falls High Sschool, Richard Nixon resigned the presidency. (That may explain the bad pop music from that year.)

Scott went to Stanford and then worked as a staffer for Montana congressman Ron Marlenee (served 8 terms, 1977-1992). Marlenee was one of Montana's two congressmen until 1992, and was staunchly, well, a little wacky.

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Melinda Pillsbury-Foster is the author of GREED: The NeoConning of America and A Tour of Old Yosemite. The former is a novel about the lives of the NeoCons with a strong autobiographical component. The latter is a non-fiction book about her father (more...)
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