Politics

Hooray For Libertarian-ish Centrists, the 42 Percent Solution to All That Ails Politics!

|

The Wash Post's Kathleen Parker writes of the unacknowledged powerhouse in American politics, the vast plurality of political independents (42 percent) who cast a pox on the far right and far left and on the Reps and Dems. You may be a centrist…if you are fiscally conservative and socially tolerant.

Centrists—who may be broadly defined as fiscally conservative, socially libertarian-ish—have been relatively quiet as "patriots" have made threats, building armies of "hunters" to bring down RINOs (Republicans in Name Only) and DINOs (Democrats in Name Only) or creating online "leper colonies" to post the names of those who, for example, dared speak out against Sarah Palin.

Whole col, worth reading, here.

This is, of course, a drum that we've beat long and hard at Reason, in all its emanations: That broadly defined believers in "Free Minds and Free Markets" are in fact the dominant group in the U.S. of A.

And sadly, among the least politically powerful.

Advertisement

NEXT: Gary Johnson: Republican Voice for Pot

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. If only they would actually, you know, VOTE!

    1. If only there was a candidate that was actually, you know, worth a VOTE!

    2. Really. There’s a missing element here.

  2. They vote by not voting. Some would argue that means they implicitly condone what happens by inaction; some would counter-argue that voting the lesser of two evils isn’t an improvement; some would counter-counter-argue that voting for a third party splits the ticket in a way in which guarantees the lesser candidate a victory; some would counter-counter-argue that’s bunk.

    The one common denominator is that suffrage is a giant pain in the ass. So I choose to spend my November Tuesdays watching Bruce Lee movies while drinking bourbon straight from the bottle.

  3. Jesus Nick, did that broad blow you in college or something? What a stupid article. Notice she never actually says what being a centrist means. I am sorry but saying you are “fiscally conservative” doesn’t mean shit unless and until you are willing to say how you are fiscally conservative. And as far as the socially liberal part, beyond gay marriage what the hell does that even mean anymore?

    Then of course there is the whole idea that majority of the country is really fiscally conservative and socially liberal, yet someone we have a government that is precisely the opposite. Unless you want to buy into some pretty wacky conspiracy theories, you kind of have to conclude that like the jackalope the fiscally conservative socially liberal voter is much talked about but never actually seen.

    Parker is a moron.

    1. socially liberal other than gay marriage. Well there’s gay adoption but that’s splitting hairs. I’ll have to go with drugs and hookers for $1000 Alex.

  4. Sadly, when fiscal conservatism meets socially liberalism (which seems to include entitlements of various kinds), its always fiscal conservatism that gives way.

  5. Every centrist and independent I know is less fiscally conservative than most Republicans and less socially tolerant than most Democrats. This hardly defines a “libertarian.”
    A Centrist Party in this country would be a bunch of fence-sitting compromisers, not some quasi-libertarian force for individual rights.

  6. the fiscally conservative socially liberal voter is much talked about but never actually seen.

    Because they:

    spend [their] November Tuesdays watching Bruce Lee movies while drinking bourbon straight from the bottle.

    1. I think Kool is right.

      1. Be like water, my friend.

        Or you can play 3-Card Monte, eat your dinner off the floor and pick your own pocket. I.e., vote.

  7. Parker is also too big of a nitwit to consider the fact that maybe some ideas are so bad that compromising with them is not really an option. Being a “centrist” between two extremes often means taking the worse of both sides and calling it a compromise.

    1. Her description of centrist actually sounds more like moderate libertarian, which is where I think the majority of the American population actually resides.

      1. The majority of the American population actually resides with their heads in bucket of KFC and their hand on the remote, changing the channel to whatever is the latest idiot reality t.v. show. Assigning a political belief to that is like saying dogs are socialists because they believe they can shit anywhere they want.

      2. Her description of centrist actually sounds more like moderate libertarian, which is where I think the majority of the American population actually resides.

        Sure, if by “moderate libertarian” you mean “don’t tax me, tax other people, less government spending– except on things I like, and less government social control– except against the people not like me.”

    2. well worth the read. thank you very much for taking the time to share with those who are starting on the subject. greetings fotbal online

  8. It’s been my experience that there’s as many “independents” who call themselves such because they are actually more conservative than Republicans or more progressive than Democrats.

    The real seems to me the inability to convince Republicans that things really would bet better if drugs were legalized and the inability to convince Democrats that things really would be better if entitlement programs were slashed.

    Even if these people seem to genuinely on your side that they’d rather the government just leave people alone, they don’t want to extend that line of thinking to certain areas out of fear that it lead to catastrophe.

    So I guess that’s where the challenge lies. The “Reason Saves Cleveland” stuff certainly is in that vein, but obviously that’s but a very small start.

    1. Independents frequently have various, sometimes, but not necessarily, wacky ideas that don’t fit any discernable pattern.

  9. …a bunch of fence-sitting compromisers, [are] …taking the worse of both sides and calling it a compromise.

    Welcome to DC!

    Fucking sickening.

    1. I don’t believe there is any fence-sitting in D.C. when it comes to massive redistributions of wealth to well connected special interests or programs that concentrate even more power in the federal government. They are 100% behind that shit.

  10. Low turnout leads to “ohmigod this threatens legitimacy” stories from the media. More reason to stay home.

    What if they threw an election and nobody came?

    1. Then the politicians who voted for themselves would win unanimously.

      1. Show up and cast a blank ballot for any race where no one is acceptable. THAT sends a message if a race with a margin of victory of, say, 5%, has 40% blank ballots.

        1. The message it sends is:

          The guy who got the most votes, wins.

  11. That broadly defined believers in “Free Minds and Free Markets” are in fact the dominant group in the U.S. of A.

    If, by “broadly defined”, you mean “including people who don’t particularly care for freedom”, then sure.

  12. I’d like all these imaginary fiscal conservatives to start voting. Voting for a party that will spend a little bit less than the next thief does not make you a fiscal conservative.

  13. I’m probably one of these people.
    Libertarianish independent (I don’t give a fuck about the LP, really), who hates Sarah Palin and thinks she’s an ugly wart on the face of all small-government advocates.

  14. Most people I’ve encountered who described themselves as “moderate” or “centrist” generally were pretty left of center, as far as I could tell, or at the very least didn’t really take a stand or position on much of anything. They certainly weren’t really all that concerned about any constitutional arguments. They mostly seem to like the idea of making policy decisions by gut feel.

    1. Right about the gut feel and unconcern with recognizable principles. And some of them are self-described independents, but not all of them are. Same vice versa.

    2. Centrist = unprincipled = swayed by emotion = supports “do-gooder” expansions of the state.

  15. I have never found a Kathleen Parker column to be particularly worth reading. She’s vapid and unprincipled.

  16. Though she could have been far more concrete in her definitions of what “centrism” is, it seems fitting that she didn’t. If only because the vast numbers of people she describes are undefinable en masse. They are not republinuts or demotards who stand firm in a ridiculous party line, but people who cannot be pinned won to one particular line of thought or another.

    I appreciate that not everything is black and white and needs strict definitions in order to identify.

    Either way, the message she was trying to convey is a poignant one that most of us here would love to espouse: the idea that the extremes are full of shit and hold way too much sway over the rest of us. That is a good message, and one that needs to be propagated so that we can finally get away from the absolute polarization of America.

  17. The various people in the center really don’t understand how big government is and acutally trust politicians. They might actually be libertarian-ish, they just aren’t as well versed in how fucked up things are IMO.

  18. … and in regards to the ‘sadly’ statement… it’s because of who and why we are (libertarians) has up until now, been the reason for our lack of political clout. This needs to change boys and girls.

    and speaking of hot babes doin stuff political, Sarah, while bringing talents to the table, can best serve our great nation, stumping… not running.

    Sarah, love ya, no shit, but there’s a lot of 16 year old girl still in you. Washington will destroy that. Don’t let them have it… ever!

  19. So, most of you commenters seem to agree that the majority of people are stupid. Do you agree with the concept of democracy then? Not “yeah, democracy’s great if everyone agreed with me” – actual democracy where, right or wrong, there’s majority rule? It doesn’t sound like you do.

  20. With many new announcement about the wizard of oz movies in the news, you might want to consider starting to obtain Wizard of Oz book series either as collectible or investment at RareOzBooks.com.

  21. Nice and really informative to get best out of SEO.Getting good and relevant tips about SEO is not easy and needs lot of research because its merely depends on people how to use it and also content of your site.

  22. ? There are some very great sources here and thank you for being so kind to post them here. So we can read them and give our opinion on pariuri sportivesubject.
    Douglas Mallette
    Author: Turning Point (Biletul zilei)
    Available NOW @ the BlogHello,

  23. The author is really a true intelligent person and I’d in no way write in these kinds of a style

  24. The author is really a true intelligent person and I’d in no way write in these kinds of a style

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.