The L, You Say

With recent scandals, public trust in leaders of both major parties continues to droop ever lower. So much so that people are taking more about libertarians. Consider Chris Cillizza’s June 9 effort for Washington Post’s The Fix, “Libertarianism is in vogue. Again.”

Is he right? I hope so.

Amidst the current scandals, the reason to say this L word, and not the C word of “conservatism,” is that, deep down, we know that conservatives in power tend to support the kind of spy program that now dominates the headlines. Just like the Obama administration. Those moved mainly by the news of current scandals will perhaps cast their eyes and ears to more consistent critics.

Cillizza points to two other factors, though: legal marijuana and gay marriage, support for both being extraordinarily high amongst young folks, and both quite compatible with libertarian ideas, to say the least.

He also points out the successful political “failures” of Ron Paul and Gary Johnson, and the cautious Sen. Rand Paul, who, Cillizza says,

has been careful to avoid being labeled as a flat-out libertarian. . . . Instead, Rand Paul has sought to create a sort of Republicanism with libertarian principles that fits more comfortably within the bounds of the GOP.

Cillizza concludes with a suggestion: “for a party badly in need of finding new voters open to its message, embracing libertarianism — at least in part — might not be a bad avenue to explore.”

It would actually be an old idea, familiar to Goldwater and Reagan supporters.

Is that in vogue, yet? Again?

This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.

11 Comments so far ↓

  1. Jun
    18
    8:39
    AM
    Iheartdagney

    Gay “marriage” is all about destroying the American way of life. Nothing else. There is no civil rights involved in letting two of the same sex “marry”. Any person can marry, no one is stopping them. If however, they insist on marrying someone of the same sex, then it is NOT “Marriage”. It’s just about changing the definition of a word, thereby destroying the foundations of what is recognized as the familial unit upon which this country stands. The family unit is the strength of this country and the militant America haters know this and hate it with a passion. Talk to a non-militant gay and they will tell you they really don’t care about the marriage issue. It’s being able to visit each other in the hospitals and inherit each other’s property WITHOUT HAVING THE DOUBLE TAXATION OF INHERITANCE TAXES they care about.

    Conservatives that lean libertarian is the norm. Libertarians who think gay and lebsbian should be able to “marry” and that it’s a civil rights issue are not thinking straight. They’ve been duped by the statists.

  2. Jun
    18
    9:08
    AM
    Roger and Lynn Bloxham

    Government or the state should not be involved in the issue of who can marry whom. That is the real issue. Each religious institution can make their own decision about the ceremony, but untied from the State. There is a an immense amount of bad law to untangle. I would suggest that people who are so extremely anti gays, study the history of the state’s involvement in marriage. The difference is that most libertarians, who have been around for awhile, look at every issue from the principle that issue supports or violates.

    Further, the politicians who are trying to work within the GOP are not just wasting their time, but also lending support to a group that has consistently violated individual liberties as much as the Dems. What Ron Paul accomplished had little to do with politics and much more with his educational effort.

  3. Jun
    18
    10:49
    AM
    Kramer

    “Amidst the current scandals, the reason to say this L word, and not the C word of “conservatism,” is that, deep down, we know that conservatives in power tend to support the kind of spy program that now dominates the headlines.”

    Yeah, well unfortunately it’s too late. As usual, most Americans are on-the-ball well after it’s too late to stop anything in this regard. The time to have chimed in and anted up was when the same people complaining now vehemently supported the Patriot Act because of its catchy name.

    What’s amazing to me is how many people that are upset about an organization, namely a government, doing what they’re doing to them today, don’t think for a second that they would use an event like 9/11 to achieve those same goals.

    We get the government that we deserve as a whole. We are suffering from “King Saul Syndrome,” whereby we have refused to govern ourselves independently and insist upon having a “king,” or master of sorts, and now we have one, and one that will only become more powerful.

    As long as people keep pinpointing a single person, even if he is the President, they’re missing the boat completely.

    All that’s left is for us to face the music, so let’s at least have the grace to blame who’s responsible, ourselves as Americans. And again, meanwhile, those complaining the loudest are the same ones defending the things being done by the perps today that are setting the stage for the imminent cascading of the loss of the civil liberties that remain.

    But hey, we have TV programs to watch and sports to attend, we don’t have time for petty things such as preserving our civil liberties and individual freedoms.

    SHHHH!!! My program’s on!! (sarcasm)

  4. Jun
    18
    11:21
    AM
    drrik

    Marriage, like pot, is not one of the 17 specific duties that the Constitution limited the federal govenrment to addressing. The states allowed the federal government to usurp their authority by going along with it and giving over the right to make the determination to the Supreme Court. The president has no difficulty ignoring either Congress or the Supreme Court in order to pursue his own agenda. We have plenty of precedent in ignoring the federal govnerment in the name of freedom and the republic, adhering to the Constition for both the Fugitive Slave Act and prohibition.
    We need governors and state legislatures with cajones and people that are willing to stand behind them.

  5. Jun
    18
    12:14
    PM
    JFB

    I agree with the Bloxhams, the state should be out of marriage, and out of the bedroom.
    We would have no judicially invented “right” to an abortion (or soon the public funding of it) were it not for the fools who believed they could ban in with a law which, in turn, eventually created the right.
    I would premise there would be fewer abortions had the state and do-gooders stayed out of that decision making process and left it to the individuals personally involved.
    We need a system were good behavior is rewarded, and foolish and behavior is penalized (and never subsidized). That is what traditional “morality” did.
    Libertarians understand there is a major difference between refusing to ban, regulate or even make criminal an action and supporting it.
    It is commonly by attempting to the public good that we have inflicted the greatest (always unintended, but totally predictable) harm on our society.
    That is the logic and reality which is absent in the mindset of the present major political parties which actually believe they can control and change human nature.
    Sadly they confuse some temporary and fleeting changes in material benefits as a betterment of humanity, when the long term results, now becoming increasingly clear, are oppression and enslavement.
    Most people cannot stomach libertarianism or classical liberalism because they would rather be damned than give up their irrational dreams.

  6. Jun
    18
    1:52
    PM
    Rollin L

    I think it’s a stretch to tie this to what Goldwater and Reagan stood for. Maybe in the loosest possible sense of going against the GOP establishment, but neither of those men would have condoned the libertarian insistence on legalizing drugs and gay marriage, or any other of the social issue views that many Libertarians have in common with the hard core left. I like Rand Paul to a large degree. I even liked some of what Johnson and Ron Paul stood for. But all those last two men achieved was drawing votes away from Romney or from the polling places altogether. That’s a big portion of the percentage that Obama won by. We will be paying the price for that for years. Some of us learned from our foolish vote for Ross Perot. Some never learn. Rand Paul is playing this far smarter than his father ever would.

  7. Jun
    18
    2:18
    PM
    Rob

    @Rollin L

    Perhaps I am the exception and not the rule, but I dislike the “party line” that confidently affirms that my vote would have been cast for Romney if not for Ron Paul or Gary Johnson.

    I voted for Ron Paul in the primary and Gary Johnson in the general election because these men were the only logical choice I had. If not for them, I would not have cast a vote for either of the other presidential candidates.

    For the record, I voted for Ross, too. I guess I never “learned” that a vote for my idea of what government should be was “wasted” and “foolish” when it didn’t follow the party line.

  8. Jun
    18
    2:38
    PM
    Edward Agazarm

    Freedom is popular they say.

  9. Jun
    18
    4:54
    PM
    MingoV

    Libertarianism is not in vogue at all. People look at the tenets of libertarianism and pick one from column A and one from column B. Almost no one wants to adopt the entire package. The current cry for “libertarianism” is to keep our big, paternalistic, welfare state government but have it respect our privacy. The NORML folks want the government to stop regulating what goes into our bodies but otherwise doesn’t care what kind of government we have. The conservatives want less of the welfare state but a bigger military and a semi-theocracy to enforce religion-based standards. None of this is libertarianism.

  10. Jun
    18
    8:47
    PM
    Edward Agazarm

    MingoV- from an acorn grows an Oak tree. Give freedom a chance to take root and the tree of liberty will grow mighty and strong.

    Yes. Your point is that many would order their libertarian-ism “a la carte” to avoid committing to the full deal. So what? It’s a good start … a very good fresh start.

  11. Jun
    20
    1:13
    PM
    Rollin L

    Rob-

    I am sure you voted with good conscience. So what has this achieved? Bill Clinton, Barack Obama and who knows, maybe Hillary in 2016? Maybe you like them better than the Bush’s, I don’t know. I sure don’t. All that happens is we go further down the path towards socialist fascism. I’ve learned that I can’t have everything I want. Sometimes I have to take what I can get. Elections are no different. I’d far prefer to have President Mitt Romney right now, but I am stuck with Obama Part II because a bunch of libertarians and many, many conservatives preferred Obama to Romney. They proved this by voting for Johnson or staying home.

    Now Mingo and Edward both make great points. Few people like the whole Libertarian platform. Many of us like parts of it. But the difference between what Gary Johnson and Ron Paul have done, versus what Rand Paul is doing within the Republican Party structure (not to mention Ted Cruz and others), is night and day. Rand may actually achieve great things within that model. These are your acorns. Johnson had a nice state career in a fairly liberal state. Ron Paul has achieved more and more each run, but it took him 2 or 3 runs to get here. Still, he can’t win a primary in any state. The problem is that we are not on offense. We are on defense, as believers in small government. We need to think about limiting the damage, but instead some think “it’s all or nothing” and that will push us to the point of no return, at which time it will be too late for most anyone alive today to see freedom again. It has to get far worse before it gets better, by that path.

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