Can the Libertarian Republican and the Non-Libertarian Republican Be Friends?

Identity is not destinyPublic Religion Research InstituteRoss Tilchin at The Brookings Institution has collated poll data about the leanings of the various factions with the Republican Party. As libertarian philosophy becomes a growing influence within the party, Tilchin wonders how well libertarian Republicans might work with conservative Christians and Tea Party Republicans. Tilchin thinks that libertarians may see limits to their influence within the party because religion tends to play much less of a role in their lives than in the lives of the other two factions:

While these groups are similarly conservative on economic matters (indeed, libertarians are further to the right than white evangelicals or Tea Partiers on some economic issues, such as raising the minimum wage), they are extremely divided by their views on religion. Only 53% of libertarians describe religion as the most important thing or one among many important things in their lives. By comparison, 77% of Tea Party members say that religion is either the most important thing or one among many important things in their lives, and – not surprisingly – 94% of white evangelicals say that religion is either the most important thing or one among many important things in their lives. A full 44% of libertarians say that religion is not important in their lives or that religion is not as important as other things in their lives. Only 11% of Tea Party members and 1% of white evangelicals say that religion is not important in their lives.

Additionally, libertarians are among the most likely to agree that religion causes more problems in society than it solves (37% total: 17% completely agreeing, 20% mostly agreeing); the least likely to agree that it is important for children to be brought up in a religion so they can learn good values (35% total: 13% completely disagree, 22% disagree); and the least likely to think it is necessary to believe in God in order to be moral and have good values (63% total: 30% completely disagree, 33% mostly disagree).

These stark differences in attitudes toward religion help explain the large difference in view between libertarians and other conservatives on social issues such as abortion, physician-assisted suicide, and marijuana legalization. Given their positions on these contentious social matters, it is very difficult to envision Libertarians gaining the support of socially conservative voters in the Republican Party.

Read the whole piece here. It also explores the simple mathematical problem of libertarians being outnumbered by the other two factions of the Republican Party in all regions of the country.

I take slight issue with the analysis, though perhaps not the conclusion. What’s left out is the very libertarian idea that just because libertarians don’t see religion as an important component to their own lives, that doesn’t mean we would object to others who decide otherwise. And believing that “religion causes more problems in society than it solves” should not be taken to mean that a libertarian believes the government should implement policies in a pursuit to “fix” these problems.

Obviously there is disagreement, but it’s not actually, literally about faith. The disagreement is about the extent of and justifications for the use of government force. To say that religious beliefs should not be used to determine whether it should be legal to get an abortion or get married is not to say that people shouldn’t use religion to make these decisions for themselves in their own lives.

Given the libertarian rejection of government coercion, who else is better suited to even approach these issues with social conservatives? Who outside of libertarians is arguing in favor of same-sex marriages getting the same legal recognition as heterosexual marriages, while at the same time arguing that no church should be obligated to recognize them, nor should any business be dragooned into providing goods and services for them?

Make room! Coming through!ReasonRather than seeing libertarians in opposition to social conservatives, it’s more helpful to see libertarians as allies in protecting the civil liberties of the religious even as they lose cultural influence. Libertarians may not be able to “take over” the Republican Party (not that they should stop trying), but the party itself may be in deep trouble if these factions cannot find points of agreement.

Over at The American Conservative, W. James Antle III today takes note at how Sen. Rand Paul is attempting to promote noninterventionist messages and drug policy reform ideas to Christian conservatives.

Reason has frequently debated where libertarians fit in the political world of the reds vs. the blues. Here’s a discussion from 2010.

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  • Irish||

    Only 11% of Tea Party members and 1% of white evangelicals say that religion is not important in their lives.

    This is pretty much proof that 1% of people will answer yes to any question a pollster asks them.

  • Kevin47||

    My church had a slogan "want God, but not religion?"

    Some groups shy away from that particular term because of its connotations.

  • Ken Shultz||

    "Only 53% of libertarians describe religion as the most important thing or one among many important things in their lives."

    Only 53%?

    ONLY 53%!

    I find that number shockingly high, and it makes me think there is hope after all.

  • Cytotoxic||

    Why would that give hope?

  • Carolynp||

    Exactly, that number puts libertarians gravely out of touch with the rest of society in the US.

  • Bruce Majors Libertarian4Mayor||

    If you read the Brookings "study" I believe this is the same one where only 2/3 of the "libertarians" opposed minimum wage laws.

    The "investigators" asked people 10-15 questions and classified one group of people as "libertarians" if they opposed government programs in several areas, both economic, social, and in foreign policy, on a few questions. Not because they are libertarians or even self-described as libertarians.

    The authors aren't trying to understand libertarians/libertarianism. They are trying to understand fissures and dynamics within the GOP.

  • The Late P Brooks||

    Tilchin thinks that libertarians may see limits to their influence within the party

    SRSLY?

  • Hugh Akston||

    If libertarians really want Team Red to take our agenda seriously, then we need to vote for every Red candidate in every election without fail or question. I know it's true because Tulpa told me.

  • db||

    Especially when the candidates espouse explicitly antilibertarian policies. How else do you expect to effect change from within?

  • The Late P Brooks||

    Only 53% of libertarians describe religion as the most important thing or one among many important things in their lives.

    What the fuck was the wording on that question?

    "Compared to child molestation or animal sacrifice, how would you describe your prioritization of religion?"

  • Bobarian||

    Child molestation or animal sacrifice could be part of your religion...

    I can think of a couple popular ones that seem to practice those tenets.

  • ||

    Well, Arabs and Jews are child mutilators.

  • Kevin47||

    As an evangelical, I think there is a lot of room to find common ground. Government is increasingly deferring to scientists when formulating laws about how we raise our children.

    While Libertarians aren't monolithic on issues such as corporal punishment, I have yet to encounter one who thinks parents should lose their children over a spanking. While homeschooling is a hobby horse of the Christian right, it is also a bold exercise of individual liberty.

    Now that gay marriage seems destined to be the law of the land, gay power groups will now be rightly recognized as consistent opponents of individual liberty.

    I think much of the opposition to Libertarian thought is forged of the image the party created in the 1990s. Growing up, it was cool for young people to be Libertarian, because it simply meant being to the left of the Dems on sex and drugs, but also fiscally progressive. Gun and property rights weren't really on the radar at that stage.

    That perception holds to this day, and probably does more to dissuade evangelicals than any particular thing Libertarians believe about religion.

  • prolefeed||

    Now that gay marriage seems destined to be the law of the land, gay power groups will now be rightly recognized as consistent opponents of individual liberty.

    Link? Explanation? I'd say self-identified libertarians have a much higher proportion who are gay compared to the country at large.

  • Overt||

    Note that he says "Gay power groups" not gays in general.

    And yes, gay power groups are generally interested in punitive attempts to force people to recognize them and legitimize their behavior.

    Whether you feel a business/individual should always respect gays and do-business/interact with them in the same way they might treat others, taking away that choice (as most gay power groups would do) is indeed an infringement on liberty. *shrug*

  • Bruce Majors Libertarian4Mayor||

    Gay lobbyists in DC are just like almost all members of the political class in DC, excepting a few tea party Senators' staffers and a few groups like FreedomWorks: careerists, concrete bound, sometimes ideologues, eager to have government "do something," and to be in charge of it and get paid well doing it.

  • Brandybuck||

    But the overwhelming majority of openly gay individuals are not libertarian. Just as with any other sector of society. But I think it's safe to say that as a group gays are decidely anti-libertarian on most issues. They follow the drums of their Democratic Party masters.

  • Carolynp||

    I know. Bizarre, right? You'd think any group that sports a high number of 8 percent of the population would instinctively rebel against mob rule. Instead they're grateful that Democrats want to "let" them get married rather than engaging in the real issue of why government has any business defining marriage.

  • Bruce Majors Libertarian4Mayor||

    Did you notice that the Pope, who all the socialists were fawning over, this week opined that gay adoption was wrong this week. Not in his welfare state!

  • Carolynp||

    Ugggh...not their favorite guy this week, eh?

  • Kevin47||

    I know a number of gay Libertarians, none of whom belong to these grievance groups. Anecdotal, of course, but GLAAD hardly strikes me as a Libertarian bastion.

  • Bruce Majors Libertarian4Mayor||

    GLAAD may have started out more libertarian compatible in its beginnings, when it simply gave awards for any positive portrayal of gays in the media. There were also local groups like GLOV in DC (Gays and Lesbians Organizing Against Violence) who opposed gay bashing on streets and sometimes in schools. The current "knock out" game has actually been an almost monthly occurrence in DC and other cities since the early 80s. It's just that more of the victims were gay, and it happened before it could be videoed on a cell phone and uploaded to YouTube.

  • ||

    I'd say self-identified libertarians have a much higher proportion who are gay compared to the country at large.

    Based on what data? Libertarians are such a small demo group that I'd be surprised if such micro-demographic data within the group even exist. But the stereotype is white, straight, male, and wealthy.

  • Carolynp||

    Bad stereotype. Me: Hispanic, female, old, middle class, straight.
    Better stereotype: libertarians love science fiction. I'll bet that one is true.

  • VicRattlehead||

    Yep agreed bad sterotype; I'm upper- twenties, Arabic, and work my ass off to stay just above the welfare class, and have been a member of the LP since I was 18. I wouldn't be shocked to see a larger demographic of gays relating to the libertarian philosophy than anything else, its appealing to people who want to be left the fuck alone which most real gays i know do, the ones they refer to as fags are the assholes you see on t.v. with the glitter and fairy wings and shit aka your typical obama-voter, and say that most of them aren't even gay and the ones that are represent the very very small and extremely vocal faction of them or as my gay friend put it "faggot ass drama-queens"

  • Carolynp||

    No doubt. I worked at UCSF for a while and I had a close friend who was gay who just went bat crap over gay people who made bizarre statements like "What kind of gay man would I be if I couldn't match colors?" Uuuuuh...the kind of gay man who can't match colors? No one denigrates homosexual society as much as liberals on that campus, and I saw a lot of that first hand.

  • AgrarianBarbarian||

    Consider the case of Liberty Ridge Farm in upstate NY. They run "farm themed" barn weddings as a component of their business. A lesbian couple requested a wedding at this facility. Liberty Ridge refused on religious grounds. The couple sued, and Liberty Ridge is currently facing seven-figure fines and even the loss of their farm. This is fascism. I am all for gay rights. In that capacity, government should serve as an impartial referee in the marketplace of ideas - NEVER as a bludgeon to annhilate ideas that annoy you. This seems to be the way the LGBT movement is going now that the goal of same sex marriage appears inevitable.

  • Bruce Majors Libertarian4Mayor||

    Though at the lesbian run Michigan Women's Music Festival, you can't attend if you are male, or if you are a male-to-female transsexual. And if you are a male child of a lesbian mom attending, you have to go into segregated day care in a special camp where the boys are kept out of the main festival: http://www.michfest.com/festival/brothersun.htm. I'm not opposed to any of that; it's just that the lesbian and gay political class wants to have its cake and eat it too.

  • Carolynp||

    Often people become what they hate. I think it's just in our nature.

  • Kyfho Myoba||

    Freud called it projection.

  • Tonio||

    Now that gay marriage seems destined to be the law of the land, gay power groups will now be rightly recognized as consistent opponents of individual liberty.

    You want some cheese to go with that?

  • MJGreen||

    Gun and property rights weren't really on the radar at that stage.

    LOL, what?

  • Kevin47||

    Kelo did a lot to put property rights on the political map. Gun's were a larger issue I guess, with the assault weapons ban. But the overriding conflict was Republicans obsessed with sex vs. a President who was, well, also obsessed with sex.

    Point being, most evangelicals (and many liberals) grew up believing Libertarians were socialists who favored legal drugs and prostitution. And I don't think they were entirely wrong.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    ...Libertarians were socialists who favored legal drugs and prostitution. And I don't think they were entirely wrong.

    As someone who has been a self-identified libertarian since at least 1980, I find this statement -- fascinating.

  • CatoTheElder||

    I think Kevin's sense about evangelicals is not too far off.

    Evangelicals can no more differentiate between a libertarian and a libertine than they can between the state and society.

    Liberals loathe libertarians for not being socialists. Many would be happy to inter them in a re-education gulag if they could.

  • John Aronson||

    Evangelicals of a presbyterian bent and their fellow travelers the Fifth Monarchists like GW Bush - generally those who believe that the state and religion are and should be one - have been having this problem since at least 1645 when the Puritan Independents in England began spinning off "separatist" Antinomian, Baptist, Unitarian, Quaker, Leveller, Ranter and similar factions.

    Thomas Edwards' "Gangraena" (1646) was the ur-text of this way of thinking.

  • John Aronson||

    Technically, evangelicals who would merge the church and state are called "erastians." All non-separtist English Calvinists are erastians to a greater or lesser extent where Presbyterians are the most erastian and Congregationalists are the least.

    Separatist Congregationalists are simply non-erastian.

    The term "separatist" means separating the church from the state.

    From its inception, the Massachusetts Bay Colony was always on the very edge of the "separatist-non-separatist divide.

  • Cytotoxic||

    And I don't think they were entirely wrong.

    And that's why we're not going to be friends. You people have an insane distorted view of reality.

  • VicRattlehead||

    Socialist? them's is fightin words, just let me finish off this cheap hooker and doobie and i'll be over to kick your teeth in

  • Bruce Majors Libertarian4Mayor||

    They let anybody in here.

  • CatoTheElder||

    Gun rights have been on the radar screen since, oh, about 1787.

    The NRA was formed in 1871. (It initially supported gun control, but the pendulum swung farther than expected. Good intentions. Unintended consequences.)

    I'm a geezer, and I do not recall a time since childhood when 2nd Amendment rights weren't an issue.

    While it is arguably true, however, that Americans felt more secure in their property rights until the 1990s, property rights have always been an issue as well. Property rights entail much more than just imminent domain.

  • ||

    In terms of perception he's probably not far off though. Libertarians are always on the fringes fighting the latest encroachment before it gets popular, so the only time most people hear about them is when something controversial comes up and they are representing the side of the issue that most people consider batshit crazy. It's the Mencken paradox:

    The trouble with fighting for human freedom is that one spends most of one's time defending scoundrels. For it is against scoundrels that oppressive laws are first aimed, and oppression must be stopped at the beginning if it is to be stopped at all.

  • Carolynp||

    I would agree. I would also stipulate that there is far more ground with protestant believers than libertarians really consider. I tell my friends at church that God set mankind loose in the garden along with the right to sin. There have always been consequences of sin, but we were born with the right to sin. Attempts to take that right away by governance are inherently doomed to fail.

  • John Aronson||

    "The Garden" was Roger Williams' term for the church - with the understanding that the relationship between any individual and God was unique and could be a completely valid christian church.

    His belief was that the garden could flourish only when the secular was rigorously excluded. This places him in the English Calvinist/Puritan/separatist line of thought. After 1660, this line of thought was extinguished in England but it continued to flourish in the US. Ultimately it gave us the transcendentalists and abolitionists. His great work, "The Bloudy (Bloody) Tenet" (1644) denounced using the power of the state to enforce religious conformity or church discipline.

  • R C Dean||

    You can be friends with anyone, regardless of their political views.

    What may prevent a friendship is the inability of the other person (or, who knows, you) to keep their politics compartmentalized from their real life. This rules out a lot of die-hard partisans, but that's an individual, case-by-case thing.

  • db||

    I had a great moment over Christmas when my sister-in-law, a liberal Obama voter who argued with me extensively over Obamacare back prior to its passage, compared a desperate excuse one of her children made for bad behavior to "a liberal trying to defend Obamacare."

    I'm sure she thought it would spark some conversation with me at the table in the presence of the rest of her husband's very liberal Boston family. Instead, I let the delicious irony-seasoned schadenfreude roll around on my tongue, caressing my palate, smiled, and said something about th weather.

  • CatoTheElder||

    My mother-in-law chided me for not taking more interest in getting ObamaCare. I've only tried to get on the Healthcare.gov website 108 times, followed instructions from their chat and phone support services, mailed in copies of identification documents, etc. to no avail. She's certain that I'm not seriously trying to get ObamaCare, because she heard on TV and read in her AARP newsletter that the problems have been worked out.

    Sorry, but your s-i-l probably believes the same, and was enjoying the same delicious irony-seasoned schadenfreude. Progressives are particularly adept at self-delusion.

  • CatoTheElder||

    Oh ... She also blames any problem I encountered with the federal Healthcare.gov system on Texas Governor Rick Perry. (We live in Texas.)

  • R C Dean||

    So, she must hold the view that Gov. Perry would have done a better job implementing a Texas HIE than Obama did with the federal HIE, no?

  • -Umbriel-||

    My wife's family includes a lot of Bible Belt Baptists, and I've had some luck getting them to accept Libertarian principles. I think the real obstacles are -- 1) The evangelical atheist community among Libertarians, and 2) The abortion issue. Progress means limiting the friction arising from both those issues and emphasizing common ground.

  • Kevin47||

    Agreed. In particular, there is a perception that some people are Libertarian BECAUSE they are atheists. This, of course, makes little sense.

  • db||

    My rejection of the Catholic church stemmed in large part from my observation of its increasingly obvious advocacy for socialist policies in the 1990s. (I noticed this in the 1990s, not claiming the Church started it then.)

  • prolefeed||

    Libertarians tend to be much more atheist than the rest of the country because emphasizing logic and reason over emotions or tradition tends to result in atheism.

    The people you mentioned have the causation exactly backwards.

  • sarcasmic||

    Many self-described atheists are in fact very religious statists.

  • Tonio||

    Here, have some cheese.

  • sarcasmic||

    I'd offer you some derp but you seem to have plenty to spare.

  • Kevin47||

    You are fond of this "cheese" quip.

  • AgrarianBarbarian||

    I used to like the "cheese" line too...then I graduated to the third grade, and dumped it for "Smooth move, Ex-Lax".

  • Bobarian||

    He has lots of whine to go with it.

  • Bruce Majors Libertarian4Mayor||

    Just because you always cut it doesn't mean anyone is going to have it.

  • CatoTheElder||

    Not just religious statists, but evangelical atheists as well. The Church of Marx is a particularly well-known and obnoxious example.

  • Brandybuck||

    Libertarians say they emphasize logic and reason over emotions and tradition, but then you go attend a libertarian meeting of some kind and are instantly disabused of such notions.

  • Kevin47||

    "The people you mentioned have the causation exactly backwards."

    Correct, but those same people (many of whom I agree are statists masquerading as Libertarians) create the perception.

  • Kid Xenocles||

    Isn't that convenient! We believe what we believe because we're just so damn smart.

  • ||

    But aren't those problems of perception rather than reality? I mean, so what if one is evangelical Atheist/Baptist? In this discussion, doesn't that only matter in terms of how that influences one's public policy opinions? And same with abortion, since there really is no doctrinaire libertarian opinion here.

    Is it just simply distaste/spite, even if the political philosophy is aligned? I love me some Bible Thumper Bashing. But the religiosity of my related Thumpers never really comes up during political discussions.

  • Fluffy||

    Is it just simply distaste/spite, even if the political philosophy is aligned?

    I think it's distrust, not distaste.

    It's hard for me to believe - really believe - that a fundamentalist isn't just biding their time until they can spring "BAN PORNOGRAPHY!" (or whatever) on me.

    And I'm sure they have trouble believing I am not secretly planning to close all the churches...since I'm a servant of Satan, after all.

    So even when we agree on "public policy opinions" there's an undercurrent where we're watching each other out of the corner of our eyes, waiting for the final shootout.

  • Tonio||

    ^This (Fluffy at 12:30)

  • Mickey Rat||

    So, it is your paranoia and your projection of it onto fundamentalists that is the problem.

  • Fluffy||

    No, it is the fact that 99.99% of the fundamentalists I encounter do exactly as I describe, in the end.

    I met Ron Paul once and he hasn't done that yet, so he's the .01%.

    It's perfectly logical to distrust fundamentalists on any earthly issue, literally any one, because the underlying logic of their belief system so utterly devalues this world relative to the next. A fundamentalist who does NOT want to burn heretics, idolaters and fornicators is behaving so illogically, given their premises, that everything about them is thrown into question.

  • CampingInYourPark||

    ...the underlying logic of their belief system so utterly devalues this world relative to the next. A fundamentalist who does NOT want to burn heretics, idolaters and fornicators is behaving so illogically

    Huh? If one doesn't care about this world, how does it follow that one would actively try to "purge" this world? Even Ron Paul thinks he knows better than others about some things. Whether he thinks that knowledge came from Santa, Buddha, Mohammed or logic is irrelevant to how he acts on that conviction.

  • Carolynp||

    As a fundamentalist, I vehemently disagree. The whole notion of tolerance is developed from western culture, which is, in turn, developed from Christianity. I suspect the only policy difference you and I would legitimately have would develop around abortion, and my opposition to abortion is based in science, not religion. I find that atheists, especially liberal atheists, typically have no idea what fundamentalists actually think and their ideology is developed around some cartoonish stereotype that has no basis in reality. With liberals, this is exacerbated by their faux intellectualism which is usually also baseless. My husband's cousin asked me if it was ok to talk about space exploration around our kids at Christmas this year. Yeah, that's a problem because we've been teaching them the earth is flat and all...

  • AgrarianBarbarian||

    Sorry, but have to disagree on a critical point. Western Culture is a direct descendant of PAGAN classical (Greek and Roman) civilization. Christianity is an import that quite literally almost destroyed Western Culture before being tamed and "Romanized" by Constantine just in the nick of time. I still believe we'd be immeasurably better off if Emperor Julian had lived.

  • Bruce Majors Libertarian4Mayor||

    In Jonathan Haidt's research, progressives were the group least able to imagine the opinions or responses of other political groups.

  • Kyfho Myoba||

    I think that every libertarian should read Haidt.

  • Rasilio||

    To a sizable chunk of the evangelical movement they equate gay marriage with slavery because they believe they have the right to live in a society which actively condemns deviant behavior.

    The same goes for Porn and Drugs, they actually believe that your being able to consume either in the privacy of your own home causes damage to them by "debasing the society"

  • Rasilio||

    Oh yeah, they also believe that while the Constitution banned Congress from forming a state religion that it is perfectly constitutional for States to do so because the 1st amendment was only ever intended to apply to the Federal Government.

  • ||

    Actually that was more or less true pre-14th Amendment, and in point of fact, several states did have state religions after ratification. IIRC, Massachusetts still technically does.

  • ||

    they actually believe that your being able to consume either in the privacy of your own home causes damage to them by "debasing the society"

    Don't know about you, but I am un chien andalusia!

  • Carolynp||

    I think evangelicals are bringing up real questions that libertarians should be able to answer. You try to make it sound like they're insane, but factually there have been real economic issues around the dissolution of marriage in Europe and Canada has been trying to enact policy to counter it. Are you truly willing to pretend that even a 5 percent increase in drug addiction will have no economic impact on society? How about a 5 percent increase in child porn? These are serious policy questions that libertarians should be able to answer without mocking those who ask them, else we will never see a libertarian movement that gets off the ground. I think your ridicule says more about your lack of ability to respond to these questions than it does about the people who ask them.

  • Hugh Akston||

    Evangelical Atheists are loathsome creatures. Doubly so when they are libertarians because they should know better than to try and foist their beliefs on other people.

  • Eitan||

    "I have repeatedly said that in my opinion the idea of a personal God is a childlike one. You may call me an agnostic, but I do not share the crusading spirit of the professional atheist whose fervor is mostly due to a painful act of liberation from the fetters of religious indoctrination received in youth. I prefer an attitude of humility corresponding to the weakness of our intellectual understanding of nature and of our own being." - Albert Einstein

  • Hugh Akston||

    Right on.

  • ||

    You can be a Hard Atheist without being an Evangelical Atheist. Not being an Evangelical Atheist doesn't imply your an Agnostic.

  • Eitan||

    I'm an apatheist and I would evangelize on behalf of that view, but meh...

  • entropy_factor||

    this is exactly why I despise blogs like Skeptical Libertarian.

  • CatoTheElder||

    The sad fact is that many libertarians impose stupid litmus tests that are repellent to many who are actually inclined to be libertarian. The atheists and gay marriage advocates here at Reason, the anarchists over at LewRockwell, the pacifists over at AntiWar, etc. Damn, if we can agree on 90% of issues and interpretations of fundamental principles, libertarians ought to be cooperating. Instead, the libertarian movement is just a debating society over what libertopia should look like.

    Of all things, religion should be irrelevant. Of all major religions, Christianity is second only to Taoism in its libertarian attitude regarding the state. There is no good reason why a Christian should not be a libertarian, other than the fact that libertarians in their own circle of acquaintances seethe with contempt for Christianity.

  • ||

    Instead, the libertarian movement is just a debating society over what libertopia should look like.

    Only a faux-libertarian would say that!

    I think it's as likely that libertarians tend to disagree more because they tend to think more, and people aren't attracted to libertarianism because they don't like to think, especially about politics.

  • Carolynp||

    Exactly. Additionally, last polling suggests 91 percent of US citizens are theists. Libertarians had better figure out how to build a bridge to this group or they will never see policy enacted.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Watch as the establishment Republicans reassert their dominance by installing Mike Huckabee to lose the next presidential election.

  • Kevin47||

    I think Santorum is more likely to re-emerge, though he is Catholic, whereas Rand Paul is protestant. The establishment wants Chris Christie, and I don't see evangelicals flocking to him.

  • Carolynp||

    Hey, could we come to some middle ground with Rick Perry? I'd personally vote for Rand Paul or Rubio, but Christie might be a bridge too far for me to cross.

  • sarcasmic||

    I remember the gasps I heard the last time I made the mistake of voicing the fact that I'm an atheist. Thanks to the activist anti-religionists who call themselves atheists, the term is associated with contemptuous disrespect and derision of all things religious. Personally I find that to be arrogant and disrespectful. I don't really give a shit what someone does or does not believe. I only draw a line when they want to have those beliefs (or lack thereof) backed by force of government.

  • Tonio||

    Thanks to the activist anti-religionists who call themselves atheists

    What are you saying here, Sarc? That anyone who says bad things (as defined by the religious) about the religious aren't true atheists? That you are the certifying authority for who can and can't describe themselves as atheist?

  • db||

    I didn't read it that way at all. The simple intepretation of what he wrote is that he is calling out the subset of annoying atheists who spend a lot of time and words railing against religion when they could be enjoying life (which should be an especially high priority when one doesn't believe in an afterlife).

  • Kevin47||

    I think he's actually saying what he wrote, which is why he wrote it.

  • sarcasmic||

    derp

  • db||

    Same here. I come from a fairly religious family, most of whom are quite smart, and I respect them all. I may not agree with their beliefs, but I do not mock them.

    I have known some really irritating atheists, who do themselves and all other atheists/agnostics/areligionists a terrible disservice.

  • Fluffy||

    I remember the gasps I heard the last time I made the mistake of voicing the fact that I'm an atheist. Thanks to the activist anti-religionists who call themselves atheists, the term is associated with contemptuous disrespect and derision of all things religious.

    The gasps of horror would have been there long, long before there was even such a thing as an "activist anti-religious" person. So I find it questionable, to say the LEAST, that the latter begat the former.

    I think it much, much more likely that the religious people around you who gasped simply hate atheists, as theists pretty much always have since the beginning of time. Ockham agrees with me.

    Personally I find that to be arrogant and disrespectful.

    As opposed to believing that the ultimate guiding power in the universe and source of all value has personally communicated to you the ultimate secret(s) of everything, and that everyone who disagrees with you is eternally damned...which is of course not arrogant or disrespectful at all.

  • Mickey Rat||

    You spend an awful lot of energy being offended by what other people think about concepts you presumably don't even think are valid in the first place (like "damned"). It sounds like a bitter way to exist.

  • Neoliberal Kochtopus||

    Nice attempt at misdirection. He's either right or wrong; invoking Fluffy's alleged "bitter way" of existing is an ad hominem.

  • Fluffy||

    "I feel disrespected by the arrogant way you disparage my world view."

    "Oh yeah? Well, you also arrogantly disparage my world view, so I guess I also feel disrespected!"

    "You sure spend an awful lot of energy being offended by what other people think!"

  • CampingInYourPark||

    I think it much, much more likely that the religious people around you who gasped simply hate atheists, as theists pretty much always have since the beginning of time.

    The beginning of time? You mean theism is an instinct?
    Should children feel disrespected about the concept of Santa Claus?

  • sarcasmic||

    As opposed to believing that the ultimate guiding power in the universe and source of all value has personally communicated to you the ultimate secret(s) of everything, and that everyone who disagrees with you is eternally damned...which is of course not arrogant or disrespectful at all.

    I don't see those people trying to outlaw the display of everything secular, unlike anti-religionists and their crusade against nativity scenes, crosses, ten commandments, etc...

  • Bill Dalasio||

    My guess is, like any religion, a great many adherents of atheism take great pleasure in lording themselves as God's (or in this case, logic's) elect.

  • sarcasmic||

    Just as dark is an absence of light, silence is an absence of sound, vacuum is an absence of matter, and liberty an absence of coercion, atheism an absence of faith and religion.

    Describing atheism in religious terms is like Tony saying liberty is something to be imposed upon society.

  • Carolynp||

    I don't know that you saying it makes it true. IMHO, when we're talking about currency saying "in g-d we trust", personally, I'm apathetic, but obviously it would cost money to remove and I'm addicted to not spending money stupidly. The vast (read VAAASSST) majority of citizens are theists. Might it not be atheists imposing their lack of g-d on me to force me to pay for removing the statement? Of course atheism is described in religious terms because it is disbelief in a deity, not refusal to eat meat, which must be described in culinary terms.

  • Michael Hihn||

    Carolynp, you are confused on the difference between being a theist and a theocrat. Very few theists wish to restore the Inquisition. Just as our Christian Founders adopted Separation to keep the European Inquisition from perverting our own liberties -- especially when we'd already suffered the Salem Witchcraft trials (by Rick Santorum's ancestors)

    Indeed, even the Christian right supports separation of church and state, because their own denomination had been persecuted in the past. Never confuse the rank-and-file with the power-driven leadership.

  • Bill Dalasio||

    Oh, great. Now we get into the atheism definition. If you take atheism as the absence of belief, the sort of contemptuous disrespect and derision you talk about makes no sense, and you're right. Some people on the other hand take atheism to the active belief of the absence of a god. And unsurprisingly, that takes on religious tones.

  • Michael Hihn||

    Most atheists I know are non-religious but not anti-religious. Sadly, many libertarians don't understand libertarianism, as shown be so many comments here.

    The issue is not whether one is religious, or even what one believes. The issue is whether one wishes to impose those values by force of law -- which is why the Nolan Chart has a top half and a bottom half!

  • JPyrate||

    Excuse me. Would any of you like to spare a moment to talk about our Lord and Savior Richard Dawkins ?

  • The Critics' Critic||

    Rather than worrying about how to fit in with the Right, libertarians can be more effective building an "independent" block that both parties must consider when selecting candidates and making policies.

  • Hugh Akston||

    I think this is ultimately the best strategy. Organizing a growing swing bloc that neither Team can afford to ignore.

  • Drake||

    Why would they have to consider them? As long as the Republicans and Democrats both ignore Libertarians, they will get their establishment shit-heads elected.

    I don't see any way the Democrats are going to attract Libertarians. They've hated economic liberty for over a century and have now dropped any lip-service towards civil-liberties. There is a chance to reform the GOP - maybe by using their reflexive opposition to everything the Democrats want.

  • Bill Dalasio||

    I don't think the swing block strategy can work. Which major Team Blue player isn't an out-and-out statist (I'm not saying the Republican establishment is any better, but there's at least a faction inclined toward liberty)? Anyone? At all? A swing block for which one side seems bound and determined to alienate isn't really a swing block.

  • Eric||

    You both underestimate the number of dissaffected Democrats out there. Many people have reflexively chosen Team Blue over Team Red due to the level of batshit spouted by Republican politicians trying to impress Social Conservatives. These soft-Democrats are ripe for the picking if approached correctly.

  • R C Dean||

    These soft-Democrats are ripe for the picking if approached correctly.

    I'd like to believe this. But, I kinda don't. Sadly.

  • Carolynp||

    Really? Which one of these guys was soft enough to stand up against the ACA this year and ask for repeal? Where the rubber meets the road, voting Democrat is a lousy idea on every front. My only question for the next ten years or so will be whether or not I'll vote for the Republicans or for a Libertarian.

  • Bill Dalasio||

    Like others, Eric, I just don't see the disaffected Democrats you write of. Can you name me any prominent figures? If you're just talking about rank and file voters, well, that doesn't give libertarians much room to actually vote for pro-freedom Democrats, does it? If the only pro-freedom guys running are on Team Red, then trying to play the swing block strategy is a fools errand. As a practical matter the only "swing" strategy I can see making any sense is swinging to the Libertarian party, which in practical terms amounts to publicly withholding your vote from the Republicans.

  • CatoTheElder||

    At least some Republicans give lip service to several libertarian principles. Some even dare to say they have libertarian sensibilities, but libertarians usually apply some litmus test to demonstrate that they are not and do their best to alienate them.

    Team Blue doesn't even pretend to regard individual liberty as a worthy idea.

  • Bruce Majors Libertarian4Mayor||

    It is the case that 40% of voting age people did not vote in 2012; only 30% voted for Obama and only 29% for Romney.

    In DC 18% of registered voters register as "No Party," meaning they cannot vote in any primary, including the Democratic Party primary, which is the de facto election in DC in 9 of 10 races (even Republicans register as Democrats in DC in order to be able to vote for the Democrats they favor in the primary.) Who are these people, 1/5 of the electorate, who do not find the electoral offerings appealing?

  • Mainer2||

    Can the Libertarian Republican and the Non-Libertarian Republican Be Friends?

    Well, the farmer and the cowman should be friends.

  • Scott S.||

    Somebody gets the reference!

  • MSimon||

  • Mickey Rat||

    "Can the Libertarian Republican and the Non-Libertarian Republican Be Friends?"

    Depends on how bitter and angry the Libertarian Republican is.

  • ||

    Haha, yep the responsibility for friendship only goes one way.

  • Mickey Rat||

    It does when the libertarian says they cannot accept the non-Libertarian from the start.

  • Bruce Majors Libertarian4Mayor||

    When the non-Libertarian tries to keep them off the ballot and de-certify their delegates they are supposed to turn the other cheek then? To show that they are Christian-compatible and not militant atheists?

  • CatoTheElder||

    Actually, it also depends upon the extent to which the Christian Rightist wants to use the State to enforce his notions of morality.

    The Venn diagram leaves out the neo-cons, which have no overlap with the libertarians, but huge overlap with the Christian Right.

    There's no hope of libertarians becoming friends with the neo-con Christian Right and their ilk, the likes of Bill Bennett, Dick Cheney, the Bushes, Karl Rove. The pro-Zionist Christian Right, which is a significant fraction of the Christian Right, is particularly impossible to align politically with. I have friendly acquaintances with folks in that group, but never ever want to discuss anything remotely political with them.

  • MSimon||

    Well this libertarian has some overlap with the neo-cons. I'm a firm believer in power politics on the world stage. Better the US than the Chinese.

  • MSimon||

    Or Islam.

  • ||

    ^This^...and ^^This^^

    It's easier if you're not a True Libertarian®. I would self-identify as a rational egoist, and like Marx (Groucho, not Karl)I would never consider joining....

  • Carolynp||

    I'm married to a neo con Christian right kind of guy. We tend to find some middle ground. I think you're not trying hard enough, maybe you're the one who's being pigheaded.

  • The Late P Brooks||

    Every time this "debate" recurs, I hear both sides in the voice of Charlie Brown's teacher.

  • lap83||

    Whatevs. My muted trumpet is much more logical than theirs.

  • Eric||

    The problem with this type of analysis is that it assumes that libertarians must fit into a two polar political world where there is only a left/right divide. Libertarians are niether liberal, nor conservative, on social or economic issues...at least not in today's use of the terms. Instead they exist on the second axis of the Nolan chart on the side of liberty, and by definition against authoritarianism.
    The biggest difference that I've found between libertarians and their traditional counterparts is that libertarians are advocates of negative rights and completely against positive rights, while liberals and conservatives are advocates of both depending upon thier cause du jour. For example, you may find a conservative who is against abortion because their religious beliefs tell them to be. A libertarian may take a stand against abortion because, to them, it imposes force upon a helpless victim. This is a critical distinction, and causes all kinds of misunderstanding around the dinner table.

  • CatoTheElder||

    It is re-assuring to see that there is more than one libertarian who thinks that abortion is a debatable issue within the framework of libertarian principle.

  • ||

    I'll have you know that all 6 members of Libertarians for Life are well represented in the debate in libertarian circles.

  • Carolynp||

    Actually, since polls show most US citizens oppose abortion, would it be such a stretch to find that many libertarians also oppose it?

  • Libertarius||

    The hell they do. What planet are you (and everyone else who spouts this anti-abortion crap) living on?

    Oh that's right, the one where you join the collectivist left in making up poll results in the hope of wagging the cultural dog. "But everyone thinks **everyone else should pay for everyone else's healthcare/the minimum wage should be $15.00 an hour/abortion should be illegal/fill in the blank**, you don't want to oppose THE COLLECTIVE, do you?"

    Abortion is a losing issue (and it really isn't any of your business), but the leftoids *love* it when religious mystics talk about trying to outlaw abortion, because it's really the only thing they have left to run on. Keep helping them run the country into the ground, you're doing great!

    /grrrrrrr.....

  • ||

    One word: Decaf

  • Carolynp||

    Rotten gallup, always making up right wing polls for social cons: http://www.breitbart.com/Big-G.....-Abortions Most Americans oppose abortion. Sorry if your beliefs don't square up with reality and all.

  • Michael Hihn||

    Carolynp, like so many of the Christian Taliban, is confused about the difference between opposing abortion (which is NOT a majority) ... and enforcing that view by law ... which is what the Taliban does (theocracy)

    That means she's also clueless on what libertarians are. And probably also ignores the Ninth Amendment.

  • Carolynp||

    You always accuse people you disagree with of being terrorists? BTW: my statement on abortion is true. Look it up if you dare question your own deeply ingrained, yet false beliefs.

  • Michael Hihn||

    Carolynp, like so many of the Christian Taliban, is confused about the difference between opposing abortion (which is NOT a majority) ... and enforcing that view by law ... which is what the Taliban does (theocracy)

    That means she's also clueless on what libertarians are. And probably also ignores the Ninth Amendment.

  • MSimon||

    Ah. Yes. But then comes enforcement. Weekly pregnancy tests? Vagina Police? Drug War intrusiveness? Road side stops? Pregnancy sniffing dogs?

  • ||

    Just when you thought there literally wasn't anything more clever than "masturbation is murder!"

  • Carolynp||

    Strawmen.

  • AgrarianBarbarian||

    That IS a problem, but it's one that has to be addressed. The "two party" system is an inevitable result of our type of government. Libertarians need to operate within this system, or accept irrelevance. Whether this means compromising some values to win others OR playing both sides against the middle is a worthy discussion. If libertarian ideas are ever going to get a chance, we need to get a little better at Machiavellian calculations.

  • Michael Hihn||

    (yawn) small-l libertarians have been a majority for over 30 years. The closest thing they ever saw was Reagan, who was devoutly religious but never sought to impose his values by law, and was actively supporting gays in the 1970s (along with Goldwater).

  • MoreFreedom||

    Here's a good rule to follow. When given statists on the Republican and Democratic tickets, vote Libertarian, otherwise vote for the Democrat. That way the Democrats get the big government moniker and the blame for government failure, while the RINOs learn they can't win running a statist.

    Also, vote in the Republican primaries. All the RINOs working in government will be voting, and with the typically low turnout, your vote will count for more.

    Finally, support Instant Runoff Voting. It's a dagger to the 2 party system.

  • Michael Hihn||

    A libertarian may take a stand against abortion because, to them, it imposes force upon a helpless victim. This is a critical distinction, and causes all kinds of misunderstanding around the dinner table.

    That depends on HOW one wishes to impose their view by law, if at all.

    But that could reject the Ninth Amendment to our Constitution AND reject the unalienable and/or God-given rights of pregnant woman -- all on no authority at all.

  • MoreFreedom||

    Social conservatives (as well as liberals) believe they have the positive right to not be offended by others.

    Libertarians defend your right to be offensive, just as we defend your right to free speech. And I'd say most libertarians behave so as not to offend others, except when others attack their freedoms, and rightly so.

    As long a social conservatives support using government to ban offensiveness, they give liberals the means to use government against their social values. Libertarians would rather neither have this power.

    The social conservatives who don't see this, are just like Democrats voting for Obamacare, and finding out after the fact, that they didn't get what they thought they would.

  • lap83||

    Why does it matter to non-religious libertarians if a libertarian is religious? Doesn't the "libertarian" quality mean the religious ones don't go around throwing Bibles at people?

  • Carolynp||

    Wow, have you seen lots of people throwing Bibles? I'm on the west coast, and I have literally never seen anyone throw a Bible.

  • MoreFreedom||

    That's called a metaphor. lap83 means that religious libertarians don't believe in imposing their religious virtues/morals on others. Libertarians do believe that actions which harm others (as opposed to behavior which merely offends) should be illegal, and is a proper role for government.

    You might equate "throwing the bible" with writing laws making non-harmful, but offensive or unvirtuous acts, illegal.

  • Dave Krueger||

    Can the Libertarian Republican and the Non-Libertarian Republican Be Friends?

    Let's fix this. How about, "Can the identity-conflicted Republican who also claims to be Libertarian and the non-conflicted Republican Be Friends?"

    A republican who shares a position similar to libertarians on a few issues is not a libertarian. That doesn't mean we can't work with them on those issues, but for Christ's sake, let's stop calling them libertarian. And, god almighty, lets stop pretending the Tea Party is something it's not. Regardless of all its different flavors, liberty is the fundamental basis of libertarianism. This is not true of republicans or democrats.

    The only exception is when a mainstream party member has become so libertarian that he his views are incompatible with the party he identifies with on almost everything, in which case he really isn't a republican or democrat anyway.

  • Carolynp||

    Wow, disagree entirely. Most of the tea party folks I've met (I am one, btw) are only Republicans because they really don't know anything about the Libertarian party. They agree with us on literally every issue. Your metric would keep your little country club world small, but it certainly ignores the political spectrum.

  • LiberTarHeel||

    Dave "The Fixer" Krueger!

    Mondo mega-like!

  • Rasilio||

    Can they be friends? Sure. Can they be Politicial allies? Maybe to some extent on some issues but never well enough to build a coalition capable of winning national elections except for when the Democrats implode.

    The real issue here is there are essentially 5 factions in the Republican party, not 3

    You have by rough percentage of the party membership

    Establishment
    Evangelicals
    Tea Party
    NeoCons (or National Security Mercantilists)
    libertarians

    The Tea Party is the newcomer on the block and the problem is they have destablized the coalition that used to make up the Republican party, combine that with the weakening influence of the NeoCons and Evangelicals in the society at large and you have a party which cannot continue to exist in it's current configuration.

    For 2016 they will probably get along just because they will be facing a weakened Democrat party running a non incumbent candidate but whoever comes out of the primary as the winner is going to cause issues down the road.

    If Paul wins the NeoCons bolt to the Democrats and some of the Evangelicals may leave to set up their own 3rd party as well.

    If Huckabee or Santorum win the libertarians and parts of the Tea Party are gone.

    If it is some 'centrist" like Christie then the Tea Party and libertarians are both completely gone

  • Rasilio||

    Unless whoever wins in 2016 is the next coming of George Washington and goes in and miraculously fixes the economy and a lot of the other problems in DC then by 2020 or 2024 at the latest you will be looking at a Republican party which has either already splintered into multiple parties or which will have more than 1 candidate from the primary run in the general election at the head of a newly formed 3rd party

  • AgrarianBarbarian||

    Third parties are a fantasy. Even if a successful third party did arise, it would either swallow, or be swallowed by, one of the other parties within a cycle or 2, as when the Whigs were swallowed by the Republicans. This is the inevitable result of a winner-take-all electoral system.

  • Michael Hihn||

    But there is little difference, if any, between Evangelicals and Rand Paul (or Ron) and Ted Cruz on the major social issues. Libertarians have abandoned the GOP, having been the majority of Americans for three decades, and ain't coming back to the same social conservatism that drove them away.

  • Carolynp||

    I think you'd have to be brain dead not to consider meeting in the middle, but hey, if you love you some socialized medicine, go ahead and be stubborn. Just remember the next few elections stubborn will also be stupid.

  • Michael Hihn||

    Speaking of stupid and brain dead ...

    Why do you believe fiscally conservative and socially liberal/tolerant -- like our Founders -- equates with socialized medicine?

    Why would you abandon the large a majority of Americans who are NOT socially conservative AND don't wish to impose their own religious values by force of law?

    Are elections no longer won by the majority who voted?

    Did you parents raise you to believe that being a trash mouth is acceptable behavior?

  • Carolynp||

    Being a trash mouth? What the? Half your statement is completely incoherent, so I will forgive your bizarre, though incomprehensible rant. I stand behind what I said.

  • Michael Hihn||

    Being a trash mouth? What the?

    (snicker) "braindead", "stupid".

    I stand behind what I said.

    You insist that fiscal conservatives support socialized medicine? That would explain your trashmouth.

  • MoreFreedom||

    Not all Republican candidates are social conservatives. And you will find most libertarians voting for Rand Paul, and frankly, I doubt that Libertarians would run someone against him. They did run a libertarian against a social conservative (Cuccinelli) but with Democratic money.

    To me, the question is whether the RINOs will wise up and start supporting freedom in their votes, or whether they believe they can get rid of the Tea Party by losing some elections. I think they are mistaken, and will try to get rid of the Tea Party and libertarians. The problem they have, is you can't get rid of the voters who will continue to support less and limited government.

    RINOs believe in raising money to get elected, by selling favors to the 1% rich for campaign cash. Libertarians and real fiscal conservatives get elected by voters, not from camapign cash. Thus, we get pooh-poohs/non-serious comments from pundits regarding those who don't raise a lot of money from the 1% rent-seekers.

    As far as I'm concerned, I'd rather have a Democrat in the White House than a RINO. Then the Democrats get the blame, and the RNC might learn a lesson about getting votes.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    From this discussion I gather that most atheists are assholes. As are most theists.

  • Cytotoxic||

    To answer the title: only in the context of the Libertarian Takeover of the GOP. And once that is done and we don't need these 'friends' anymore, we can cut them loose. Evangelicals are not friends of freedom. The issues they sort-of agree with libertarians on take a far back seat to putting homos in their place.

  • ||

    What’s left out is the very libertarian idea that just because libertarians don’t see religion as an important component to their own lives, that doesn’t mean we would object to others who decide otherwise.

    Unless you are Shrike.

  • ||

    Or Sevo. Proving that religion is indeed the one thing that can bring even the most passionately disparate people together.

  • Agammamon||

    Can the Libertarian Republican and the Non-Libertarian Republican Be Friends?

    Sure they can. Its the non-libertarian *Democrat* that you have to watch out for.

    Funnily enough, I think it would be preferable to live in a fascist Mormon state, with mandatory church and no alcohol than to live in an ideal leftists fascist state with no money, compulsory exercise, and *Studies majors making up the social and political elite.

  • NL_||

    The fact that libertarians will tolerate religion probably doesn't really exercise religionists, who like to see devout religious expression in their television, music, film, children's entertainment, organized sports, fast food packaging, and of course their politicians. A religious libertarian might be able to bridge the gap somewhat, but there are lots of religious conservative candidates that would excite the "Christian right" far more.

  • Carolynp||

    Well, certainly anyone who wants to get elected in the US needs theists more than they need libertarians.

  • AgrarianBarbarian||

    I don't know about that. Look to the future. MIllenials overwhemingly support gay marriage, legal pot and reproduction freedom - and at the same time, they are rejecting "big government" sacred cows like Social Security and Obamacare at the same rate. In short, they are ALREADY libertarians - they just don't know it yet. The future belongs to the party that realizes this first - as long as we (as libertarians) can figure out a way to innoculate these kids from being influenced by free birth control pills and Beyonce endorsements.

  • Carolynp||

    Millenials are still overwhelmingly theists. Which harkens back to the argument that being a theist isn't incoherent with being libertarian. I'm also hopeful about millenials. I have to assume they would reject big government once they get the bill, but they overwhelmingly voted for big government in the last election. I think the trick is going to be getting the Republican libertarians to let go. What is the magic point where it becomes enlightened self interest to vote libertarian rather than compromising and voting Republican. That's my daily debate.

  • Michael Hihn||

    Shackford contributes to the myth of a libertarian era -- when, in fact, the GOP has no libertarian wing at all, not now. Just many faux libertarians like both Pauls, Ted Cruz and others -- who are merely Rick Santorum with tax and/or spending cuts.

    How can anyone say that libertarian Republicans oppose social conservatives? Every prominent one IS a social conservative! Ron Paul even backed Pat Buchanan for President, and signed and supported DOMA (for those states who dared to recognize same-sex marriage.)

    REAL libertarian Republicans were openly and strongly defending gays in the 1970s, two decades before Clinton signed both DOMA and DADT ... and three decades before Obama.

  • Cytotoxic||

    So are you Bo's griefier bitter-er older brother or soemthing?

  • Michael Hihn||

    If you see bitterness then you may have lost all touch with the concept of individual liberty.

  • ||

    Yeah, that's the True Scotsman test, isn't it?

  • Michael Hihn||

    Yup!

  • MoreFreedom||

    "Ron Paul even ... signed and supported DOMA"

    Not true. Paul didn't vote: http://clerk.house.gov/evs/1996/roll316.xml

    Now, repent because you've committed a mortal sin, by falsely accusing someone of something they didn't do. That's called bearing false witness, and lacking God's forgiveness, you'll go to hell. That's according to the bible in which you don't believe which is fine. But I still consider it immoral. Shame on you.

  • RishJoMo||

    Soudns like some serious business to me dude.

    www.BeinAnon.tk

  • working poor||

    I think republicans can't win POTUS again without the libertarians so they need to give in on the social issues or else...

  • MSimon||

    I think republicans can't win POTUS again without the libertarians so they need to give in on the social issues or else...

    ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

  • Carolynp||

    Nope. They can't afford to lose social conservatives. Numbers.

  • Michael Hihn||

    13%

  • Carolynp||

    Libertarians 7-8%. Numbers.

  • Michael Hihn||

    Ummm, you again confuse labels with behavior. It's not just numbers. There's also intelligence and integrity.

    The libertarian LABEL is 13-18%.The people you never heard of -- fiscally conservative and socially liberal -- are 59%.

    http://www.cato.org/blog/more-.....ral-voters

    To again clarify for you, there is a massive difference between social conservatives and the small percentage (13%) who seek to establish a theocracy (the Santorums, Bachmanns overall; the Pauls, Cruz, etc on major issues.)

    All political zealots, both left and right, are a small minority ... but they believe all of America is awaiting to be saved by them. Which is why we call them zealots and fanatics.

  • Kyfho Myoba||

    Don't be talkin' smack about Ron.

  • Michael Hihn||

    Golly, like the Reagan coalition -- which is still there -- instead of today's faux libertarians?

  • MSimon||

    Electoral politics is determined by the least committed faction. The Democrats get this (what that actually practice when elected is something else). The Republicans don't.

  • Carolynp||

    Highly doubt you'll see this, but I have been turning this over in my head for a couple of days.

  • AgrarianBarbarian||

    The cultural right and libertarians will be allies, thanks to the left's "Versaille doctrine". In short, whenever the left "wins" on one of the many, annoying Kulturkampf issues, they can't resist the urge to twist the knife. They don't take victories on same-sex marriage (for example) at face value, and focus on smoothing over the cultural turmoil such changes are bound to produce - instead they seek to "ram home" (I cringe to use that idiom in this context)their victory and FORCE social conservatives to accept the dictates of pop culture.Examples of this are the "wedding cake" controversy and the "Duck Dynasty" flap. So, from the POV of "the right", the battle is no longer about them imposing thier views on society - the battle is about preventing "society's" views from being imposed on them. They become de facto libertarians - for now. So I like "our" chances for a taking over the Republican party at this juncture.

  • AgrarianBarbarian||

    Or, to put it in a more practical way - at this particular point in history, the left is FAR more erosive to liberty than the right. Libertarians need to decide if they are willing to "water down" their views and win partial victories - Or remain principled, if impotent, purists. Generally speaking, our differences with the right are largely FASHION. Conservatives once freaked out about long hair, short skirts and Elvis as much aas they are currently freaking out about pot and gay marriage. They got used to these things, and even embraced them. On the other hand, the differences with the statist left are fundamental and irreducible

  • Carolynp||

    ^^^This.

  • Kyfho Myoba||

    Unless there's a "terrorist" attack and the neo-cons accelerate into overdrive.

  • Kyfho Myoba||

    Because 9-11 or the next false flag operation (probably nuclear) changed/will change EVERYTHING.

    Bank on it.

  • antodav||

    A lot of sweeping generalizations here about both religious people and libertarians. For one thing, it only includes evangelicals among the “Christian right” category, ignoring the broad swath of non-evangelicals (Catholics, Mormons, etc.) who are devoutly religious yet cannot be lumped with evangelicals theologically or politically. And then there are all the non-Christian religious people…

    Of course, the main problem with evangelicals is that they believe in using government to enforce religious doctrine (including doctrine inconsistent with the core tenets of Christianity). This makes their version of conservatism inherently incompatible with libertarianism. There really can therefore be no overlap between the two groups, as the Venn diagram shows. Either the libertarian vision of the Republican Party will win out in the end or the theocratic evangelical vision will win out, tying the GOP’s fate inexorably to that of Evangelical Protestantism, which is slowly dying away. It’s either one or the other; no middle ground is possible.

  • ||

    Everybody has a God-given right to be Free.

    No one has a right to impose their values on others.

    http://rich_grise.tripod.com

  • LiberTarHeel||

    "Can the Libertarian Republican and the Non-Libertarian Republican Be Friends?"

    Show me a "libertarian Republican", and I'll show you a non-libertarian Republican. [Rewrite with "Democrat" substituted for "Republican" -- works just as well.]

    FCOL, half the time Libertarians and libertarians can't be friends.

    Go to your room, Shackford, and come back when you learn what a libertarian is.

  • ||

    I am a Christian who is also libertarian. Both are important to me, but my relationship with God is most important. I do not believe in using the government to enforce Christian principles and I believe that Jesus was libertarian Himself. It is up to the individual to accept Christ and His teachings. The government cannot make people moral or ethical and it has no business telling the individual or any private entity how to live or work. All Christian principles can be achieved in the private sector. The government only causes people to live exactly the way Christ did not teach. And government itself is nothing but force against individual will. I think that libertarianism and Christianity go very well together because Jesus taught that we should be loving and tolerant toward one another, not coercive, which is the only purpose of government.

  • Carolynp||

    Agree.

  • MoreFreedom||

    "it’s more helpful to see libertarians as allies in protecting the civil liberties of the religious even as they lose cultural influence"

    I agree, but I think it's also helpful to point out to social conservatives that they are just like liberals, in that both want to use government force to enforce virtues, it's just that conservative and liberal virtues are different and incompatible. Or rather than saying "enforce virtues" we might say it's criminalizing offensive behavior that harms no one (other than perhaps the person engaging in it), but again liberals and conservatives have different views on what is offensive.

    Libertarians of course, want to limit government to dealing with situations in which people are actually harmed (rather than just offended).

    Thus, to me, it's important to point this out to social conservatives. If one can convince social conservatives that their virtues should be left to individuals/churches and not be made into law, then they'd stop advocating for social conservative laws. This is because then they'd see that giving government the power to enforce religious virtues, is essentially giving government the right to tell them what their religious virtues will be, and it will be suject to a majority vote, rather than a vote by God.

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