Politics

Why I Am Not a Conservative, Chapter XXIII: Because Small Government Stalwarts Hate on the Gays, Single Womens, & Push Drug Tests

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Yesterday, Matt Welch cogitated on the question of whether small "l" libertarians should vote for the likes of Sharron Angle, Christine O'Donnell, and Carl Paladino and concluded:

Until anyone with an R by his or her name shows any inclination to cut back on defense spending, war making, and the stockpiling of Executive Power, let alone getting the hell out of whole swaths of private peacable transactions between consenting humans, the most enthusiasm you'll get from me is seeing politicians and parties get fired, while their captive customers increasingly defect from their tired, predatory bullshit.

I'm not sure where that leaves me vis a vis the following candidates, all of whom have been pretty well-vetted as small-government stalwarts interested in cutting spending and the role of government broadly speaking. And yet they just can't STFU until they manage to alienate me, a small "l" libertarian!

Here's Nikki Haley, who's running for governor of South Carolina:

"I'm gonna push to make sure that if someone fails a drug test in this state, that we are not gonna pay benefits," Haley said at a press conference outside the S.C Department of Employment and Workforce. "That's something I'm gonna push for, I think people of this state deserve that. Personal responsibility matters and we're gonna continue to fight that fight."

Talk about personal responsibility! Haley would make drug tests mandatory … for unemployment benefits! WTF? Because the only reason you could be bounced from your job in this economy is because you were high?

Here's another Palmetto State pol, GOP Sen. Jim DeMint, a Tea Party favorite and the bankroller of many small government candidates:

[DeMint] "said if someone is openly homosexual, they shouldn't be teaching in the classroom and he holds the same position on an unmarried woman who's sleeping with her boyfriend—she shouldn't be in the classroom."

Jeebus H. Christ! Who's up for the hymen check of first grade teachers? That wouldn't turn into a patronage jobs program now, would it?

A few years back, DeMint apologized for similar comments, on the grounds that education should be a local issue outside the purview of senators. Which is weak tea, to be honest. If he does believe that this isn't an issue he should be discussing, then STFU already! But he in fact bragged about his ability to vocalize the feelings of the silent majority:

"(When I said those things,) no one came to my defense," he said. "But everyone would come to me and whisper that I shouldn't back down. They don't want government purging their rights and their freedom to religion."

What a brave position, especially while addressing a Baptist group in South Carolina. If schoolkids don't check their Constitutional rights at the schoolhouse door (at least they didn't use to, back in the old Tinker days, before SCOTUS determined that chess club players could be forced to pee-to-play), I'd like to think that single teachers can have legal, consensual sex without losing their jobs.

And then there's Rand Paul, who has run from the libertarian label perhaps because, well, he's not really all that libertarian. From a recent debate he had with the awful Jack Conway:

PAUL: I would rather the local schools decide things. I don't like the idea of somebody in Washington deciding that Susie has two mommies is an appropriate family situation and should be taught to my kindergartener at school. That's what happens when we let things get to a federal level. I think I would rather have local school boards, teachers, parents, people in Padu[cah] deciding about your schools and not have it in Washington.

The book Paul is referring to is, of course, Heather Has Two Mommies, which dates from 1989! Come on, already, you're living in the past, man! And it wasn't the federal government that forced the book on anybody, it was a bunch of local school boards (most famously in New York City). Why does that particular moldy old controversy have to be the illustration of the evils of federal intervention in education? In the debate, Paul compounds his lameness by saying his position toward the federal Dept. of Education is the same as Ronald Reagan's: It should be abolished. Yeah, I'm all for that, except that Ronald Reagan increased the federal education budget by something like 40 percent during his eight years in office.

Why oh why does it seem that everyone who wants to save a nickel in federal spending has to also have a fixation on gay- and single-woman sex when she is not calling for drug testing for losing your job in the worst recession in years? Is there a necessary connection between wanting to cut Washington spending and hating on the gays (even or especially when your argument is that the federal government shouldn't be concerned with the places said gays may be working)?

What the hell is wrong with this country—and the Republican Party—that it can't generate more pols like Gary Johnson, who is actually libertarian as opposed to playing one on TV? Is it that hard, or that off-putting to simply admit that getting the government out of the boardroom and the bedroom (and the classroom!) is part of the same process?

I should note that I can't legally vote for any of the folks above anyway, even if I wanted to. And I'm well aware that senators and even governors have limited abilities to intrude on anybody's personal life. But the sorts of statements above make it hard to convince anybody who doesn't agree with you already that small-government rhetoric is not a stalking horse for a repressive, retrograde regime that will start clamping down on anything that bothers that folks who happen to be in power. That's a real problem in building a true limited-government coalition because I know plenty of liberals (including gays and lesbians and single women!) who would be basically ready to sign onto a libertarian anti-government agenda if they didn't feel deep down that it's simply a way for the state to control their lifestyles.

Update: Via the Twitter feed of Freeman in KY comes this truly sad-hilarious anti-Rand Paul ad that almost makes me want to take back any and all criticism of the Bluegrass State's best-known eye doctor. There's a reason I referred above to the "awful Jack Conway":

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  1. This year I may. I live in Florida and for governor I have a choice among someone who very well may be a crook and someone who may very well be a crook.

    For U.S. Senate I think I will vote for the Republican Christ openly supported the Stimulus bill. Before he did that I thought he was a “fiscal conservative” and even had a shred of respect for the man. After that I want to do everything in my power to keep that asshole out of D.C. This year that means voting for Marco Rubio. Also, history has shown, that when there is a Democrat in the White House it is good to have a Republican controlled House and Senate. I am keeping my fingers crossed for government shutdowns. MAybe if people see a “government shutdown” and nothing horrible happens durring it they will realize we don’t need a bloated government.

    1. I haven’t heard anything about Rubio’s positions on social issues. Am I not paying attention or is he not emphasizing them?

      1. Rubio is not emphasizing social issues at all. When asked about them he acts as though the question was about something fiscal in nature. It is actually a good sign in my opinion.

      2. From ontheissues.org and from his own campaign site, he supported HB 1143 (the pre-abortion ultrasound requirement), he’s for toughening laws on prostitution and for expanding DNA databases, wants to keep DADT.

        Between that, and his statements on expanding the military and defense budget, also from ontheissues.org, I … can’t vote for Rubio, myself. I’m really torn on this one.

        1. I can’t vote for Rubio. I’m voting for the Libertarian, Snitker. He comes off like a Tea Party candidate (at least he did to me). I emailed him about the WoD, and he basically gave the Federalist position on that, which I can understand given that he’s campaigning in Florida.

          Also, there’s a Libertarian write-in, John Wayne Smith, for governor. Be warned, the website is everything you’ve come to hate about Libertarian candidates’ websites.

          1. And for what’s worth, I know John Wayne Smith, and he’s a whackaloon.

            NTTATWWT, given what passes for sanity in politics.

          2. And for what’s worth, I know John Wayne Smith, and he’s a whackaloon.

            NTTATWWT, given what passes for sanity in politics.

            1. Had to say it twice, just so you’d get the message.

              1. Isaac – I don’t doubt it, but as so many people like to remind me, I’m voting for someone with no chance of winning. Why worry?

                Furthermore, as you kind of pointed out, if Joe Biden is “sane”…

            2. You can say that again.

          3. Be warned, the website is everything you’ve come to hate about Libertarian candidates’ websites.

            Does that have something to do with images and Flash? Because I have both of those turned off, and I don’t see any problem. Of course, I didn’t read the page in detail….

            1. No, it looks like it’s from 1994. They all do. They look like the website I built in middle school. None of them know what wordpress is.

              1. or blogspot. or facebook. or myspace(wtf is that?)

        2. I really don’t care about the pre-abortion ultrasound thing. That’s just a sop to the anti-abortion lobby, and if it makes a few women decide that they were about to make a mistake – which is unlikely – well, bully for them.

          The other stuff, though – that’s frightening.

          1. I do have a problem with the fact that the woman would have had to pay for a procedure she didn’t want done.

            But otherwise, yes, it was just more political theater.

    2. Rubio is a neocon scumbag with a huge sense of entitlement and the ethics of your typical FL pol.

      1. In other words he is a politician.

        They are all politicians.

        The only non-politician running for office in Florida on a major party ticked is Rick Scott who also appears to be a crook.

        We Floridians have some great choices this year!!!!

        1. In other words he is a politician.

          They are all politicians.

          There’s no excuse for being a politician.

    3. Whoohoo. Government shutdown.
      Soddomy Gone Wild!

    4. Some people think Jack Conway should kill himself by slitting his own throat.

      Others think Jack Conway should kill himself through a complex ritual auto-disembowelment.

      Everyone agrees that Jack Conway should kill himself. ASAP.

  2. With the repeal of DADT, Team Red can cut defense spending as a means of thwarting teh ghey agenda.

    1. An increasing number of Conservative Republicans are going “paleo” and opposing military intervention. I have heard people who five years ago supported the Iraq war etc. do a turn around and want to “bring the troops home”.

      1. Yeah, I have a shitload of conservative friends who went “paleo” sometime between November 4, 2008 and January 20, 2009.

        Coincidentally, around that time my liberal friends were no longer concerned about getting the troops out of Iraq, government transparency, etc.

        It’s weird… two ideologically opposed groups of people simultaneously experiencing a paradigm shift. I can’t explain it.

        1. I know what you are implying. I do not think it is quite that simple. The financial meltdown had a lot to do with this. Long before it was known whether Obama or McSame would be the next POTUS conservatives were starting to rise up against Bush. The priorities simply shifted from matters of war to matters of finance.

    2. SPUD PATROL! WE SHOVE THE POLES IN THE HOLE!

  3. btw, alt-text wins all around. Nicely played, Mr. Gillespie.

  4. I’m a libertarian. Tell me what issues, hell what single issue, the GOP is good on.

    Talking about fiscal discipline is not an issue. Everybody is for it as long as they don’t have to make a decision.

    1. I understand your meaning but sometimes in politics you just need someone, anyone, to stand up against what is going on. I will cheer if LP members or BTP people are elected, really, I will. But having a GOP Congress right now could at least give us enough breathing room to stop what is going on. We just need to buy two years time right now.

      1. OK. Vote GOP federally, and LP locally. In two or four years time, those local LP politicians will have a little more experience for running in the bigger elections. Currently, there are 157 LP elected officials nationwide. But I’ll tell you, the LP needs libertarian candidates, as well as funding.

        Can an Alex Snitker win? David Nolan? they won’t let Snitker in the debates. Nolan destroyed McCain, and won the online debate poll with 53%, but we know who’s going to win the election.

        1. I normally do vote for an LP candidate locally when I see one.

          I agree with you

        2. I vote for the LP candidate whenever I see them on the ballot. This year I’ve got (2) such choices. So the rest of the ballot is damage control, or not voting a particular race if both choices suck about the same amount.

        3. Apparently Charlie Crist is interested in letting Snitker in the debates. He must think Snitker would draw some of the Tea-Party crowd away from Rubio and split that vote a little more. I love how nobody fears Kendrick Meek.

      2. No. Vote LP or some other third party.

        1. Yep. When you vote either Dem or GOP you give implicit approval of the party. In the last decade I’ve seen the “fiscally conservative” Republicans and “civil rights supporting” Democrats control both houses and the presidency simultaneously.*

          That didn’t work out too well for someone with libertarian freedom loving sympathies.

          * I know, I know. McCain would have been fiscally conservative and the Dems would have done something on civil liberties if only they weren’t so busy fucking up reforming the health care system and throwing borrowed money out of helicopters to waiting state and municipal governments.

          1. And, in the midst of a close election, when you vote for a third party you know isn’t going to win, you give implicit approval to whichever party wins.

            1. Of course! – by not voting for the Democrats, I must be implicitly endorsing…the Democrats.

            2. No you don’t. You explicitly reject the status quo.

              I refuse to play the two party, one philosophy politics game any longer. I won’t get fooled agian.

              1. Given that these days, libertarians like you and Gillespie have declared liberty means supporting the same things the political class has been trying to cram down our throats for the last 40 years, I assume this means you now support three party, one philosophy politics.

            3. By your logic, when I decide to shop at a certain grocery store and avoid two other nearby stores because those other stores are worse deals, I’m REALLY saying I prefer the more popular of the two grocery stores I didn’t shop at.

              1. By your logic, when I decide to shop at a certain grocery store and avoid two other nearby stores because those other stores are worse deals, I’m REALLY saying I prefer the more popular of the two grocery stores I didn’t shop at.

                As Robert said, a voting decision is not like a buying decision. As a voter, you only get what you choose if your choice is the most popular.

            4. Nice Tony impression, Tulpa.

              Let me be blunt: if you vote for someone who supports 4% of your views, and disagrees with 96% of them, on the grounds that the other asshole agrees with only 3%, you are an idiot. Let me repeat that, even though I think you should get the math: If you vote for someone who works to DESTROY nearly everything you believe in, you are an idiot. If they are elected, you haven’t “won” anything, except the quickening demise of what you hold dear.

              That is “throwing away your vote. Stop throwing it away, and vote LP, or admit you’re a statist.

              1. How are you an idiot when you vote for the person who is 1% more in your favor? It’s not as if everyone gets to buy the product they want, it’s winner take all.

                1. Ok then I will have to vote for demecrats, because I believe the invasion of Iraq was much worse for our country and will cost more $ and lives than the health care overhaul.

              2. Let me be blunt: if you vote for someone who supports 4% of your views, and disagrees with 96% of them, on the grounds that the other asshole agrees with only 3%, you are an idiot.

                The voting decision should be far more complex than merely an expression of agreement with stated positions on issues. Even so, the range of issues that the GOP is more libertarian on than the Dems is significantly larger than 1%. Not to mention that divided govt is always better for those of us on the outside of the two party system.

              3. Let me be blunt: if you vote for someone who supports 4% of your views, and disagrees with 96% of them, on the grounds that the other asshole agrees with only 3%

                At this point I’d start taking a good look at my own views. Are they unrealistic? Are they contradictory?

            5. I am so fucking sick of the “a vote for a third-party candidate = support for X party” bullshit.

              If fewer people thought that way, we wouldn’t have the Team Red/Team Blue powermongering duopoly.

              1. The causes of the duopoly are far deeper than individual voter decision.

                Enough people voted third party in the presidential elections of 1992, 1996, and 2000 that the winner didn’t get a majority of the vote. The duopoly was never threatened.

                The key to breaking up the duopoly is winning small races first. Not saying that’s an easy task, but it’s easier than convincing the majority of a state to vote for someone who isn’t D or R.

                1. Yep. 4 or 5 libertarian seats in the house could wield a lot of power – playing the broker between two leviathans. Really, any number that gets the top party below 50% in the legislature would do the trick.

                  I have often wondered why the Congressional Black Caucus didn’t cast off the (D) label and go independent. They could have been running things throughout the 90’s and 00’s by playing off the Dems and the Repubs.

                  1. I have often wondered why the Congressional Black Caucus didn’t cast off the (D) label and go independent. They could have been running things throughout the 90’s and 00’s by playing off the Dems and the Repubs.

                    Really? Are you sure? I’ve always held that the CBC is something that would not exist if they tried to buck the Dems party line. I think if they pulled a stunt like you suggest, we’d get ample proof that the Republicans were the party of anti-slavery–much as we’re seeing that Dems love the drug war. Stoners and Negroes are only useful when they’re voting you power. When they vote to advance their own interests they become as much of an impediment as the Republicans.

            6. ITZ CUZ OF YOU THAT TEH COUNTRY SO FUCKED UP NOW CUZ U DIDN’T VOTE FOR OUR GUY THATS WHY OBAMA WON. IF YOU VOTE 3RD PARTY THEY WIN!!

        2. Deepness in the Sky reference????

          1. Qeng Ho, fool! Recognize.

            1. Awesome – just reading it.

              1. Vinge is coming out with a sequel to A Fire Upon the Deep next year. A trilogy will be great.

                1. I’m liking Deepness better, but Fire also had some really cool concepts.

          2. i just read Fire Upon the Deep for the ummpteenth time this week. I love Vinge.

            1. Two great books. I read them out of order, which I regret.

      3. “We just need to buy two years time right now.”

        This is an “every single election” talking point from Republicans to libertarians. “Vote Libertarian…later”

        1. Warren once compared libertarians who vote Republican to abused women who keep letting the abuser back in the house saying that “this time he’s changed. No really. He promised”.

          1. Most people only have one spouse who they hope to stay with for life.

            In politics things are quite different.

            We have many politicians and elect them to short periods of time.

            What I am voting for this year is gridlock. Gridlock will at least stop this country from becoming Venezuela.

            1. Basically voting for a halt to the Marxist ‘mission-creep’ due to the fact that in a decade or so – the demographics in this country will all but gaurantee electoral victories for the Left.

              1. Basically voting for a halt to the Marxist ‘mission-creep’ due to the fact that in a decade or so – the demographics in this country will all but gaurantee electoral victories for the Left.

                Prove it.

                1. Not to be facetious nor trite, Micheal, but if the individuals that are currently migrating into this country who do not want to give up the culture of their former homelands – it will play itself out in the next 15-20 years, UNLESS, it is muted in a large way resolutely by the American voter. The vast majority of those that are coming here are not of ‘Libertarian’ ideology. The newer arrivals, particlarly of latin american countries, adhere to – whether they are conscious of it or not – a type of cronyism that the left and conservatism decry in public, but wink at after elections are held.

                  My main point is, Michael, that if we gave the Constitution to a horde of Ostrogoths (in their language) would not matter more than spit on the sidewalk because of the ingrained culture and mores of people that understand, practice, and will let themselves be guided by it.

                  1. That is one of the most common mistakes made on this site. That the culture of the peon and the jefe will change to that of the independent yeoman. Culture does matter which is why we need a serious change in our immigration policy.

                    1. Especially since multi-culti is working out so well wherever else it’s been tried.

                    2. That is THE reason I cannot go whole-heartedly to the libertarian (make that ‘Reason-libertarian’) camp. The personal liberty stances that are staked out by this blog and a couple of others make me beam with pride.

                      Thomas Sowell stated on Limbaugh’s show a few weeks back that in reality – “the Constitution is just a peace of paper – it only matters as much as the culture… the people that embrace it…”. That is not a direct quote, but I tell you, just the fact that Dr Sowell said this made me gasp and think he had committed a heresy, but it is painfully true.

                    3. Something other countries are finding out. The hard way.

                    4. Something other countries are finding out the hard way.

                      http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-11559451

                      And why does Reason’s spam filter keep rejecting my embedded links?

                    5. Something other countries are finding out the hard way.

                      Since Reason’s spam filter apparently doesn’t like links to the BBC, you get the tinyurl version.

                  2. let Whitey help you. Whitey wants to save you by saving himself. WHITEY KNOWS BEST.

                    1. Who said anything about race?

        2. I have voted libertarian in past elections, I will in future elections. This year our country is on fire.

          Look at Venezuela and you will see what this country looks like in two years if the Democrats maintain control of both houses of Congress. If you think I am joking you are not.

          If I wanted Venezuela I would move there.

          1. Good god, man! You sound like you wet yourself typing that post. We’ll be fine. Just wrap yourself in the warm blanket of American Exceptionalism and you should be able to have a good nights sleep.

            1. Pham,

              I am not a conservative as you seem to imply. I oppose our military adventures overseas. I do not have a picture of Mit Romney by by bedside.

              I am a libertarian and I do worry about our country. If you are not I invite you to read some of the recent news stories on this very website. Read about the targeted assassinations of U.S. Citizens overseas. Read about the abuse of eminent domain. read about the cameras everywhere.

              Are you not concerned?

              No, this is not just a Democrat thing. Republicans are at fault too.

              My point is that their partisan arguing and bickering can be good for liberty.

              1. Your logic is fail. Gridlock won’t save us. Only delay whatever apocalypse you’re implying. Join the rising tide, yo. Vote for a third party.

                1. Gridlock won’t save us. Only delay whatever apocalypse you’re implying. Join the rising tide, yo. Vote for a third party.

                  “It’s pointless to empty the water from this leaky boat with an electric pump. Here, use a Dixie cup!”

              2. *Can* be? Yes. Is now and will be for the near future? Can’t agree with that.

                The bickering works when it leads to either compromise or mutual giving up — i.e., when it forces both sides to either give up a little or give up entirely.

                Right now, the way the bickering works is that nothing gets done, and the loud shrill voices drown out the shit that *needs* to get done, and gives the rest of us loud, shrill voice fatigue.

            2. Nothing to see here. Just move along.

          2. Yes, I know. This year, it’s an emergency. This year, I just have to vote GOP – it’s too important to vote for, you know, the people I actually want in government.

            1. Ayn Randian,

              I volunteered for my local LP for years. I worked on OPH booths. I handed out LP literature and WSPQs. I have my libertarian credentials. Yes, it IS an emergency. We don’t just have some bland statist in the White House. We have a full blown tyrant wannabe. Look at who he has surrounded himself with.

              Please. open your eyes. this is no ordinary election year.

              1. Forget it – I hear this Every. Single. Election. It’s great that you have somehow convinced yourself that this is the year to go against what you believe in, but GOPers around me have cried “wolf” way too much. I’m not coming running to help any more.

                1. This.

                  Republicans had chance after chance after chance to prove they were something other than the problem.

                  They chose to burn through their any small-guv credibility they had by going on a massive road trip of civil liberties contraction and by maxing out the credit cards on hookers n’ blow as soon as Clinton’s seat was cold.

                  1. It’s about choices. It’s me or the Republicans at this rodeo, pardner.

                2. This. Fuck, fuck, fuck the GOP. As I said in a previous post, their real reply to the Dems is like what you heard from your first girlfriend “I want it too, but please, slow down!”.

                  With these massive deficits, they can’t even come up with something like the “Contract with America”, just some lame-ass promises they obviously have no intention of keeping. They are the same sauce as the Dems, only weaker. Fuck them.

                  1. My 5:06 was meant as a reply to Ayn Randian. It goes as a reply to the asshat who posted “Trillion$Deficits forever” as well. If you think the Republicans will substantially address, let alone fix, the deficits, you are an idiot.

                  2. Wouldn’t you rather slow something bad down?

                    The trouble with radicals is idealism. The ideal is not real.

                    Think about a very serious issue in your lives: health care. We know that no matter what you do, it ends in death. Does that mean extending life is not worthwhile? Is no health care worthwhile if it doesn’t lead to immortality?

                    And if your own life isn’t enough, read Ringer’s Winning Through Intimidation and remember the ice ball. No matter what you do, the Sun goes out and the Earth ends up as a frozen ice ball.

                    And if you think your experience after death will be better than life, how do you know dead people aren’t under some even worse tyranny? What makes you think the people who died before you haven’t fucked up the afterlife so bad you’ll wish you were alive again?

                    1. If the republicans want libertarian votes, then they need to stop being the slightly less worse alternative for more than 10 minutes.

                      “We suck 4% less now!”

                    2. Thanks for the encouragement.

                    3. No matter what you do, the Sun goes out and the Earth ends up as a frozen ice ball.

                      Well, no, actually. In the year 3970, for this grouping of ‘Earth’, a way will be discovered to route a steady stream of hydrogen into the sun in perpetuity. The sun will never go out.

                      However, in 410,957, it will be concluded, based on observing perpetual suns still going after several universals have passed, that maybe this wasn’t a great idea.

                      Fortunately, no decision need be taken or made, since all were/are long before/now/later/always, and the ones that were disconnected had no real bearing on the ones that were not.

                      Why is this important? Numerous people who comment here may be active or have descendents who are active in these processes.

                      There. That’s what goes through my head with all this damned piping going on.

                3. To be frank, A_R, I doubt the GOP cares. Social conservatives are a far bigger group with higher turnout than libertarians.

                  And then after the GOP takes back Congress, you can go back to complaining about why the GOP caters to social conservatives.

                4. GOPers around me have cried “wolf” way too much. I’m not coming running to help any more.

                  +10

                5. We’ll miss you.

              2. “Full blown tyrant wannabe,” PIRS? JSuch original full blown rhetoric! So fresh and insightful! I’ve never heard that kind of alarism before! Idiot.

            2. Yes, I know. This year, it’s an emergency. This year, I just have to vote GOP – it’s too important to vote for, you know, the people I actually want in government.

              This wolf has been cried so many times that it’s actually insulting to hear it again.

              Fuck you, “libertarians” who always seem to end up voting for the GOP. You lose.

              (this is in no way meant to endorse voting for a Democrat, or voting at all)

              1. This wolf has been cried so many times that it’s actually insulting to hear it again.

                Fuck you, “libertarians” who always seem to end up voting for the GOP. You lose.

                So where will you go?

                Your only choice is taking over one of the two parties.

                And if you think that can not work, remember that in the aftermath of the Vietnam War, Communist sympathizers took over what had been an anti-Communist party.

                1. What party are you talking about? Certainly not the one that enacted the New Deal and whose patron saint said he planned “to work with Stalin to build a world of democracy and peace”.

                2. “So where will you go?

                  Your only choice is taking over one of the two parties.”

                  -10000

                  1. I choose…I choose…nothing!

    2. “I’m a libertarian. Tell me what issues, hell what single issue, the GOP is good on.”

      OK

      cap and trade
      the welfare reform act
      Obamacare
      card check
      the Bush tax cuts
      treating terrorists like terrorists: there’s nothing libertarian about being weak

      but let’s not vote for those Republicans because of their stance on library books about gays. Yawn.

      Nick Gillespie, are you really taking the position that Washington should have more of a say in education? If not, why is it wrong for a candidate for Senator to say it’s a bad idea?

      1. Rand Paul blamed the federal government for forcing the book on helpless school districts when it was state and local governments doing so. Gillespie criticized Paul’s inaccuracy.

        1. Rand didn’t blame anyone in particular. If was Gillespie who provided the full context – assuming that In fact was the context (which is not at all obvious.)

  5. Its quite disturbing how many of these candidates have completely forgotten the “fiscal conservative” agenda they pushed to get them nominated with tea party help only to go social conservative statist at the first opportunity.

    There is a libertarian running in the O’Donnell race that should gets support of limited government types.

    Lets hope that the tea party movement and fiscal conservatives do a better job at filtering out the statist so-cons in 2012.

  6. Are you glibertarians STILL defending Johnathon Irish?

    1. Oh, and… TRUCKNUTZ.

      1. What you said, fellow traveler!

  7. Allow me to apologize a bit here…

    When we’re talking about places like South Carolina, and we’ve already got the small government types on board, candidates have to decide who among the swing voters they’re going to make a play for to put them over the top…

    Usually, in the culturally conservative South, we’re reduced to hoping the cultural conservative candidates will try to make a play for small government libertarian types–but if instead, we have a small government type who’s forced to make a play for culturally conservative swing voters to win?

    Then that may be the best thing we can reasonably hope for in a place like South Carolina, or Kentucky, or…a lot of places where the swing voters–this time–are the cultural conservatives.

    The sad, sorry truth is that politicians really do tend to reflect the thinking of their constituents, which is why I have more faith in Reason, et. al. as an agent for change–since they tend to target the the thinking of the electorate rather than trying to score seats in Congress.

    If we’re asking politicians to ignore culturally conservative swing voters in places like South Carolina? I think we may be expecting too much. When the political reality changes, things will get better, but right now, the reality may be that the best a libertarian can hope for is small government types who reach out to cultural conservatives…

    …which is a lot better than what we’ve seen in the past–culturally conservative candidates ignoring small government types.

    1. Palin/Huckabee 2012!!! God, we are so screwed.

      1. That’s not my first pick either, but I’m not sure Palin/Huckabee 2012 isn’t preferable to four more years of Obama/What’s his name.

        On cultural conservative issues too!

        It’s not like Obama’s a big champion of marijuana legalization and a gay man’s right to serve openly in the military either.

        1. I am Sheriff Joe Biden!

          1. Nah…but I’m sure I’d remember his name if I saw it…

            Was it “Mumbly Joe”?

  8. Is this replacing the homoerotic classic A Separate Peace in high schools?

    My god, I hated that book. My English teacher analyzed it line by line. I was so glad when he broke his leg and died from the clot. I think I cheered.

    I should note that I can’t legally vote for any of the folks above anyway, even if I wanted to

    You’re a convicted felon, Nick?

    1. I was so glad when he broke his leg and died from the clot. I think I cheered.

      You’re a soulless prick. Haha.

      1. While what you say is true, you can’t tell me that that book wasn’t the most tedious piece of bullshit this side of Ivanhoe.

        1. I’d also like to put another English teacher favorite out there for contention for most ponderous and tedious: Black Elk Speaks.

          1. The Giver? It was pretty weak. Like your english teachers leg.

            1. The Giver?

              Pedantic and written on a SF theme by someone who hasn’t read enough SF to do it well. But I suspect it works pretty well as plain children’s literature. The pacing was fast enough, and the conflicts starkly written.

              That said, compare it to Podkayne of Mars, it’s not in the same league.

              1. You need to read sci-fi to write sci-fi? Maybe so if you’re consciously aping or trying to fit in a genre. But what if you’re just a person who never read sci-fi, but you were a good writer and you wrote something that when readers read decided to label as sci-fi? Couldn’t many different writers “invent” sci-fi independently?

                1. Of scource you can write SF without having read a word of it.

                  But…

                  There are a lot of lessons that the SF establishment has learned about constructing and presenting different worlds. That process took time.

                  Few people do it well starting from a blank slate. The Giver didn’t suck, but it could have been better.

                2. It helps to know any field before charging in and doing something, otherwise you’re prone to commit rookie errors and “invent” things that are already cliches.

          2. I don’t remember reading any of those in HS. I remember Animal Farm, and that was 8th grade.

            1. Animal Farm was awesome. I never had to read it in high school but I loved it. So much tragedy and despair rolled into a naive farm animal package. Fan-fucking-tastic.

              1. Yeah, there’s something about farm animals….

                Kidding

        2. While what you say is true, you can’t tell me that that book wasn’t the most tedious piece of bullshit this side of Ivanhoe.

          I don’t know, because I don’t remember much about bad books I’ve read a bit of and then abandoned.

      2. I was happy when Old Yeller got shot.

        Or, note the title of my blog post on I Want to Live!

    2. If Nick is a convicted felon, he should change his residency to NJ. Felons can vote in NJ, but not if you are currently on parole or probation, or incarcerated.

    3. Geez, until I read the wiki precis of the novel I though it was your English teacher who broke his leg and died from the clot, not a character in the book.

      But yeah, thanks to your “recommendation” and having read the wiki precis of the novel I will definitely steer clear of it. 🙂

    4. Your English teacher broke his leg and died from the clot after analyzing A Separate Peace line by line? Wow, great irony there. You just can’t make stuff like that up.

      1. What you have all failed to understand is that my English teacher was a woman, so the pronoun “he” could not apply to her, and therefore had to apply to one of the characters. Your failure to know this or read my mind is merely a symptom of your lack of awesomeness.

        1. I was simply distracted by a squirrel, and took for granted you personally broke the leg, never having been subjected to whatever it was book you mentioned.

    5. I read only the first two pages, wrote a paper on it, and somehow got a B. It was just obvious that the book would emanate suckitude.

  9. “What the hell is wrong with this country – and the Republican Party – that it can’t generate more pols like Gary Johnson, who is actually libertarian as opposed to playing one on TV?”

    The education system. We are brainwashed away from any notions of small-government since childhood, and the ruling class does its best to put us in “slot A” or “slot B”

  10. When’s John going to show up and excommunicate Gillespie?

    1. hell, this article is just begging for a cameo appearance by Eric Dondero.

      1. DONDERROOOOOOOO

      2. I’m sure you meant to type DONDEROOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!! I suggest you be more careful in the future lest you embarrass yourself further. 😉

        1. Goddamnit Epi! You’re stealing my thunder!

          1. NAGAAAAAAAAAA

            1. CAPS LOCK

              UNLEASH THE FURY!!!

              1. What’s that, sweetiekins? You can’t find your Underoos?

                1. Undroos? How on God’s green fucking Earth can you remember those fucking things.

              2. You mean – “THE FOOOOKIN’ FURY!!!” ( said with plenty of audible arpeggios and sustained dive-bombs for an entire 3-minute track) xD

                1. +1 for awesome vibrato.

        2. So, you’re telling him to tow the lion, for all intensive porpoises?

    2. Not sure how John the Republican is going to do well excommunicating anyone more libertarian than he is.

  11. I solved the problem of being perpetually disappointed by “small-government” Republicans by deciding not to vote ever again.

    1. I can’t wait till 2016, when, I hope, everybody will get this idea.

      Minimal voter turnout + general tax strike = the only way i see any change happening.

      Hope’n’Change you can believe in dream about.

  12. “Ronald Reagan increased the federal education budget by something like 40 percent during his eight years in office.”

    Reagan did that? Or Congress? ‘Cause, like, we have three branches of government, and only one of them (Congress) writes the bills and pretends to fund them. I’m not trying to be picky here, but the executive branch isn’t responsible for everything that happens during the president’s residency. He isn’t a king. Sorry if this complicates the narrative.

    1. Unless they overturned a veto then your “complicated narrative” is a bunch bullshit.

      1. Thank you for playing. The judges have determined that your response makes no sense at all. But we do have some lovely parting gifts for you. Johnny?

        Johnny: 10 boxes of Rice-A-Roni?, The San Francisco Treat?!

        1. HIs response made total sense. The fact that you had to resort to a hackneyed joke means you know that, too.

          1. Reagan had 9 overridden vetoes. None of the had to do with funding the federal Department of Education. So, his revealed preference was to continue funding that department at greatly increased levels.

            1. To be fair to the symbol-named douche bag, a president won’t necessarily issue a veto if he knows it will be overridden (unless he really wants to make an ideological point and/or waste congressmen’s time).

              Not that that was necessarily the case with Reagan and education spending, but the point is not all presidential preferences are revealed by the veto.

              1. Reagan didn’t overturn it because he wanted his precious D.A.R.E. programs funded.

              2. I suspect that many of our elected leader take this very line, but your analysis neglects the option of allowing the bill to become law unsigned.

                The point may be too subtle for the mainstream media, but men and women of honor would be able to parse it.

                If Reagan signed those bills he put his personal stamp of approval on them.

                End of story.

        2. Yeah, the response made total sense. Edgy “must have a symbol rather than a name” guy apparently can’t read or think so well.

          1. What’s in a name? A symbol’s so much cooler.

    2. The problem with a two-party system, is that at any given time, one party will control two of the three branches of government.

  13. I don’t have any problem with what Paul said. Local communities should decide what’s taught to children.

    But the other quotes are retch-inducing. These people are poster children for divided government.

    1. Lots of local communities would decide to teach children creationism as science. Not all of them are in states beginning with a K.

      1. Yes and state governments aren’t better than the federal one. Take the national embarrassment that is the Texas Board of Education for example.

        1. State governments are better in that it is easier to vote with your feet.

      2. And that’s your business, how?

        Oh wait, libertarians only believe in freedom of education if it doesn’t involve that icky religious conservative stuff.

        1. Yeah. Some of us think that pesky first amendment thingee applies to the states.

          1. Teaching intelligent design with no religious content is not a violation of the separation of church and state simply because it mirrors what religions teach, any more than laws against murder violate separation of church and state because the Bible says “thou shalt not kill”.

            1. There is no such thing as intelligent design without religious content. It began and still is a religious concept.

            2. There is no such thing as intelligent design without religious content. It began as and still is a religious concept.

              1. So did laws against murder.

                1. Well, duh, you could say that about a whole lot of laws, as ‘religion’ was one of the first systems used for controlling groups of humans and their behavior. But nice replay of the whole ‘original sin’ concept.

                2. So did laws against murder.

                  I don’t think anyone needs to worry about the Sumerian religion outside of a Ghostbusters movie. The Code of Ur-Nammu predates any religion that exists and didn’t seem to use religious justifications for its rules.

                  1. And the Sumerians had a creation story too, so ID is just as old by that logic. Probably even older than the concept of criminal law.

                    Anyway, it’s not like our legal system had anything to do with a civilization that was utterly forgotten for 5000 years after its fall. Our legal system is ultimately based on a mix of Roman law and (horror!) Christianity.

                    1. Christian law is based on Jewish law which is based on ancient Babylonian and Egyptian law. If you make an homage to the Steadicam scene from Swingers, you’re still referencing the scene from Goodfellas, whether or not you’re conscious of it.

                3. I highly doubt that rules against killing and stealing were under the sole purview of religion for all of mankind.

            3. What is intelligent design if not a creation myth?

              It’s not even something that people actually think. It’s a blatant and well-documented attempt by a small group of Christians to force their view on others by disguising their beliefs in pseudo-scientific pablum.

              Which is it, Tulpa? Your point of view is muddied, because on the one hand you seem to be for religion in education and on the other you claim that intelligent design is okay because it is not religion and then you nonsensically use that to support your original claim.

              1. I’m actually an atheist who is for choice in education; if I had my druthers public schools would not exist and we would be deprived of this wonderful debate topic.

                I certainly do not subscribe to intelligent design, but I fail to see how a topic that is taught in a way that does not invoke religion, violates separation of church and state just because of the history of those who proffered it.

                Heck, we better not teach the Declaration of Independence in school either, since the writer explicitly references a Creator as the source of our inalienable rights.

                1. It’s not that hard, Tulpa. Intelligent design requires an intelligent designer. Who do you suppose that would be?

            4. Whizzz-BANG…BOOYAH!! Nice parry and jab, Tulpa.

          2. Yeah. Some of us think that pesky first amendment thingee applies to the states.

            Seventy percent of Americans believe that creationism should be taught alongside evolution.

            1. Cite please.

              1. 79% of Americans think that “creationism” should be taught alongside
                evolution in public schools; only 20% thought evolution should be taught
                without mentioning creationism.
                –“Survey Finds Support Is Strong for Teaching 2 Origin Theories,” James
                Glanz, The New York Times, Mar. 11, 2000.

                1. I think I see a fundamental flaw in the concept of publicly funded education here.

                2. I was taught the phlogiston theory of combustion in chemistry class and the divine right of kings in civics class. Somehow I survived.

                  Granted, these were covered very briefly for historical context, but I’m not going to lose sleep over ID being covered in biology classes in a similar way.

            2. In fact most textbooks that explain evolutionary theory do also explain creationism.

              1. That is a good point. Creationism is taught in biology classes. Just not in the way that the religious people pushing ID (the current repackaging of creationism) want it to be taught.

        2. And that’s your business, how?

          Mandatory attendance (truancy) laws? Now, if my (hypothetical) kids aren’t being forced by law to attend* a particular brainwashing facility, then I suppose you have a point.

          *being locked out of any sort of choice in school isn’t much better than “your children have to attend school X” btw. Vouchers. Now.

          1. Your hypothetical kids are not forced to attend schools in districts where you do not live. So unless you live there, it’s none of your business.

            1. I’m forced to pay for them to teach that crap even if my kids don’t go there – statewide education funding and all that.

        3. Religious conservatives only believe in the constitution if it doesn’t involve that icky “separation of church and state” stuff.

          1. And partisan hacks find “separation of church and state” in the Constitution not the letter to Danbury Baptists.

        4. Personally, I think the creationism stuff is a little wierd and creepy, but I’d rather have it taught in the Bugtussel Consolidated School District and be rid of the DoEd than the opposite.

          1. Agreed. Especially when you consider that teaching creationism is more likely to produce a generation of skeptics with functioning bullshit detectors as it is to produce a bunch of religious fanatics.

  14. The loss of freedoms comes when both parties collude and agree, even if for different reasons. I hate the extreme positions on the right exampled above too, but there will be plenty of push back from liberals, independents and the constitution to stop the crazies on the right.

    The more serious – because it’s more successful – intrusion is from the left. The movement away from a market economy and economic choice is like the Bubonic Plague compared to the threat from the right which is comparatively like a 3 day flu.

    The whole world is overrun with that plague, and it has killed tens of millions of lives and numerous generations of prosperity. While we wait for the pure and righteous leaders, the plague spreads.

    In the modern world, the social hyper-conservatives are just not the real threat. The fear of them is emotional, and I share it, but it’s a minuscule threat compared to the left’s agenda and record.

    The choice is easy for me.

    1. Bullshit. The Left and Right in this country are controlled by the same anti-free market corporatist shills. The only difference is the Left occasionally throws the peasants a poison filled bone and says, “You fell for it!”

    2. I’m with bagoh20. It’s better and easier to have a free market with limited government intervention and then tackle the the socially conservative restrictions, than it is to have a sclerotic economy with a semi-socialist big government, but hey, at least they never mention intelligent design in schools, and every library has Heather Has Two Mommies!

  15. Funny, I just read that Rossner novel a few weeks back.

    I sooner have Theresa Dunn teach my kids than DeMint.

    1. Judith Rossner bought the house I grew up in, for a cousin of hers.

  16. “A few years back, DeMint apologized for similar comments, on the grounds that education should be a local issue outside the purview of senators. Which is weak tea, to be honest. If he does believe that this isn’t an issue he should be discussing, then STFU already.”

    I’m no fan of De Mint, but he should be allowed to say whatever he wants. Complain when he pushes legislation, or actually runs on a platform explicitly promising to make these changes.

    1. It isn’t De Mint, it’s De Aftertaste.

      1. Just like toothpaste….

      2. Ha. I’ve always wondered: is there anything that has a better aftertaste than a taste? Or is that somehow physiologically impossible?

    2. And Nick should be allowed to say what he wants in response, and you should be able to say what you want in response to Nick. But past that it should be a no-speech zone.

  17. “Why oh why does it seem that everyone who wants to save a nickel in federal spending has to also have a fixation on gay- and single-woman sex when she is not calling for drug testing for losing your job in the worst recession in years? Is there a necessary connection between wanting to cut Washington spending and hating on the gays (even or especially when your argument is that the federal government shouldn’t be concerned with the places said gays may be working)?”

    Two words.

    Jerry
    Falwell.

    …..(and Pat Robertson, to a lesser degree).

    Yes, if you want to finger one single person responsible for turning the Republican Party into the Party of Cock-Blocking, blame the late Falwell (who, I hope, is burning like a tire in Hell until his atonement is complete…which will take quite some time).

    Mr. Falwell is the man solely responsible for motivating the Christers into becoming such a large voting bloc that every Republican incumbent or up-and-coming Republican has to bow down and blow the fat man’s moldering wanger (i.e. play to the C.C. agenda) if they want to have a GHOST of a chance in getting elected.

    It’s disgusting, ethically and morally, but that’s how it has played out. And we all have Fat Fuck Falwell to thank.

    1. Jerry Falwell? I think Billy Graham was more influential from a religious perspective.

    2. No, that’s only the explanation for why that confluence of views resides in the Republican Party. It doesn’t, however, explain why there is such a confluence of ideas to begin with.

    3. I think he’d rather have every incumbent or up-and-coming candidate shove a dildo up his moldering butt.

  18. “Is there a necessary connection between wanting to cut Washington spending and hating on the gays…”

    There are plenty of people who feel that with a weaker government, the churches will fill in the power vacuum. Their position is more anti-secular authoritarian rather than anti-authoritarian. If all orphanages are run by churches, then you don’t need laws to prevent gays from adopting. Private charity can deny support based on race, religion, or sexuality, unlike unemployment benefits. These things seem like a great idea if you’re part of the religious majority in your area. Less so if you’re not.

    A real life example of this is the repeal of Prohibition: it passed because it still allowed for the prohibition of alcohol at the state or local level. In the highly religious parts of the country, Prohibition continued for decades and still exists in individual counties and cities today. Smaller federal government doesn’t necessarily mean a rise in individual liberty, and could mean the exact opposite. Imagine if all the Amendments were treated like the repeal of Prohibition.

    1. “Smaller federal government doesn’t necessarily mean a rise in individual liberty, and could mean the exact opposite. Imagine if all the Amendments were treated like the repeal of Prohibition.”

      Ah, the old “we need a strong central government to protect us from evil local sherrifs” meme

      1. Cmon, RyanXX, you’d be POWERLESS against their small-scale tyranny. It’s not like there are elections for sheriffs or any other sort of legal recourse for those oppressed on the local level.

        And moving to a new locale wouldn’t be an option either, since ALL sheriffs across the country would become Petty Tyrants simultaneously.

        Without Obama, you’d have every jackboot in the country shoved up you ass, so be thankful, blah, blah, blah, blah, argle bargle.

        1. And when i say “simultaneously” i mean it. No big-red-button pushing involved.

          1. (d’oh, that argument was about the word “spontaneously”. close enough for commenting on gov’t work.)

      2. I don’t think he’s arguing that the Federal Government is somehow better than local or state governments. What he is arguing is that state and local governments can be just as bad as the Federal Government in terms of liberty. An being the Jim Crow South in terms of liberty for African Americans was horrible.

        I’m personally not opposed to the argument of state’s rights, but the idea that a state can’t be tyrannical is plainly wrong. Libertarians at the end of the day, should prize the rights of the individual over the powers of both the Federal Government and state/local governments.

        1. *An example being

          sorry about that.

        2. Totally agreed on that. I only support the concept of “states’ rights” because if taken to its logical conclusion it goes down to LOCAL rights,NEIGHBORHOODS’S rights, and then, of course, INDIVIDUALS’ rights

  19. Libertarians should push hard for approval voting (being able to vote for as many candidates as one wants, the one with the most votes wins.) The timing is perfect because the Tea Party is a captive audience – they could start a viable third party while not endangering Republicans; many would also vote Libertarian. For us we could vote Libertarian/Independent while simultaneously pursuing the strategy of ensuring divided government by voting for different establishment parties to the legislature and executive branches, or disapproving incumbents.

    1. Also, a limited gov solution – would not have to pay for runoffs unless the winners were at a statistical tie.

    2. Sounds too good to be true. There’s got to be some ominous downside to that method. I just can’t see it yet.

      1. No real downside: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Approval_voting. A few criticisms but no system is perfect.

        Approval voting is beautiful because you can strategize how you choose to vote. You can vote for the one candidate you like, or the candidate you like and the better of the two establishment, or only third party, or anyone but the incumbent. With technology, it wouldn’t take any longer to total than current ballot counting.

        The problem is the major parties would never go for it because it would destroy their monopoly. If a Libertarian could appeal enough to both the Left and the Right to win enough of each side’s approval on the ballot, they could win the race. There would have to be a serious reform campaign, but with a great majority supporting the expansion of a serious third party on paper while not wanting to help their least preferred candidate by actually voting for a third party, I believe it would not be so incredibly difficult to get the major party candidates to jump onboard via the tea party (who might figure this out when Speaker Reid is reelected in NV), the Left-wing grassroots (remembering the Gore-Nader ordeal), etc.

        1. Agree, you’d have to be a very sophisticated voter to really fuck with the approval voting system in a dangerous way. I don’t think most voters are very sophisticated.

          I think if the US ever moved away from a first-past-the-post system, though, it would probably be towards something more like proportional representation. You know lefties are going to love anything that (1) the Europeans do and (2) enhances “minority” representation (them not realizing minority can also mean libertarian in an electoral sense).

          1. Nah, the political parties elected by PR would become more like the establishment.

          2. I think if the US ever moved away from a first-past-the-post system, though, it would probably be towards something more like proportional representation.

            Either you don’t know what you’re writing about, or you haven’t analyzed it well. Proportional representation would require changes to charters and constitutions to abolish districts, while changes that preserve the single officer per district scheme would require in most cases only changes to the election law.

  20. “”Why oh why does it seem that everyone who wants to save a nickel in federal spending has to also have a fixation on gay- and single-woman sex…”

    They don’t ALL. The ones that do are being put front and center by the left, even when they have no chance of winning. If you think they are all like that, then you’ve been played.

    These candidates are the only hope the Dems have , by making them the face of the reform movement. O’Donnell for instance has no chance, yet she is the most visible candidate out there. Where is all the Alvin Green coverage?

    1. Nick used much more mainstream examples than O’Donnell.

  21. There’s no LP candidate on the ballot in my House district. So, if there happens to be an Anarchist Party candidate, I’ll vote for him/her. Fuck it. Anarcho-syndicalism and participatory economics for everyone!

    1. It’s actually more of an autonomous collective.

      1. I’ve been reading up on it a little. It seems like a bureaucratic nightmare. But, when Kurzweil invents a chip that can convert thought directly to code, and the development of AI and AGI, it might alleviate some of the inefficiencies, which seem to be inherent.

        1. Come Nov., I’m voting for Our New AI Overlords.

      2. You’re fooling yourself. We’re living in a dictatorship.

        1. Now we see the violence inherent in the system…

    2. So, if there happens to be an Anarchist Party candidate, I’ll vote for him/her.

      Voting? That seems rather conventional for an anarchist. You’re supposed to eschew The Man’s artificial representational politics and just seize the day, duuude!

      1. Damn you!

  22. I’m not sure any libertarian has much of a chance of winning. How do you build a loyal organization to help you win if you believe in small limited government?

    You mean if I help you I won’t be able to get a cushy tax payer funded job? Or punish my enemies through the use of the State? Or force people to obey my moral guidelines under penalty of law?

    What? If you win, I get nothing?

    People who run for office want to do something. Why run if not for the chance to boss around the rest of us?

    1. Yes, it sadly seems that most Americans despise freedom. Either that, or people just want to avoid responsibility.

      1. Either/Or? Pretty sure it’s both.

      2. Libertarians = Extermists in the eyes of the MSM. Just listen to Chris Mathews. A group of small government types would never have survived the Chilean mine accident. Every last one dead when their greed had nothing left to eat but their own organs. Ummm. Fresh organs.

    2. Your last sentence points to the achilles heal of democracy, I’m afraid.

      “If you want government to intervene domestically, you’re a liberal. If you want government to intervene overseas, you’re a conservative. If you want government to intervene everywhere, you’re a moderate. If you don’t want government to intervene anywhere, you’re an extremist.”
      ? Joe Sobran (1946?2010

      1. Mr Sobran apparently liked ear-tickling quotes that misrepresented reality.

        1. Well, with his tongue firmly in cheek, it seems extremely accurate.

  23. Hell of a post Nick. Fusionism was a bullshit agenda/idea from day 1. Conservatives are not our friends.

    1. Hell of a post Nick. Fusionism was a bullshit agenda/idea from day 1. Conservatives are not our friends.
      reply to this

      So with whom will you ally?

      Liberals?

      1. I’ll go off on my own and read some Stirner.

  24. I will vote for the candidate who pledges to repeal the most laws.

    Waiting.

    Waiting.

    Still waiting…

    1. And I vote you off the island of sanity.

      Jesus fuck people. Let’s learn to live with the idea that we have a civilization with laws. Now let’s get to work ensuring we have good laws, how about?

      1. I agree. So let’s get to work repealing the bad ones.

        With an estimated 20,000 laws in the US Code (plus all the regulatory rulings), you can’t help but think Sturgeon’s Law applies (90% of everything is crap).

      2. Wouldn’t the best way to ensure that we have good laws be to get rid of the numerous bad ones?

      3. Don’t you have to be a resident of the island in order to vote? I think it’s a law or something.

        1. It’s not a “good law” though, so Tony doesn’t recognize it.

      4. ATTACK OF THE STRAWMAN!!!!

        WATCH OUT, LIBERTARIANS BELIEVE IN LAWLESSNESS! THEY HATE CIVILIZATION AND SUPPORT CAVE-DWELLING CANNIBALISM! ANARCHY IS THE SAME AS CHAOS!

      5. Because, as we all know, more laws + more government + high taxes = Utopia.

        1. It’s only okay when it’s Democrats making the laws, growing the government, and raising taxes.

          1. You know what I love about faux Tony? He’s got a consistency real Tony will never have.

        2. Crikey, Mr Fify! I’m going to remember this equation the next time some statist accuses me of being an unrealistic Utopian because I’m a libertarian.

  25. But the sorts of statements above make it hard to convince anybody who doesn’t agree with you already that small-government rhetoric is not a stalking horse for a repressive, retrograde regime that will start clamping down on anything that bothers that folks who happen to be in power.

    You are aware that these people were in power from 2001-2006, right? I don’t recall the nation resembling a theocracy during that time.

    1. I do recall invading a country that happened to Muslim on false pretexts and foolishly attempting nation building in another that also happened to be Muslim, long after the ostensible mission was accomplished.

      I also remember the Terri Schiavo fiasco.

      1. Wasn’t there also something about a moribund new security agency to complement the other dozen or so that we already have?

        But this violation of constitutional rights is totally gonna keep us all safe.

        Oh, and the additional security screenings are all random.

      2. Gillespie wasn’t talking about foreign policy there, he was talking about domestic repression.

        The Schiavo affair is pretty damn weak tea since in the end the govt let her die.

        It seems to this libertarian at least, that we retch at what Republicans say and at what Democrats do. I’m more worried about the doing.

        1. How come everything is weak tea now? What happened to stale coffee?

          But what really bothers me is how in the past few years “double down”, a term from casino blackjack, has caught on as a metaphor, usually inappropriately. I think they’re conflating “double up” with “knuckle down”, and are reinforced by the usage in casino blackjack, whereby the house lets you double the stakes if you promise to take only 1 more card. Usually the persons being alleged metaphorically to double down aren’t promising to stop anywhere, but may be doubling up and knuckling down.

          1. How come everything is weak tea now? What happened to stale coffee?

            Must be that Yellow Menace that the Democratic Senatorial Campaign ads against Pat Toomey keep warning me about. “If he supports free trade, he should run for senate in China, not Pennsylvania!”

      3. And I remember a libertarian friend of mine and activist (Kathy Greene, Ralph Fucetola’s wife) who thought Schiavo was railroaded into premature death.

    2. Not from lack of trying.

      1. Do, or do not. There is no try.

    3. I do recall them trying to amend the Constitution to completely fuck over gays.

  26. The US has already gotten the gummint it deserves, as repeatedly demonstrated by voting patterns.

    There’s no shortage of accurate knowledge about 3rd parties out there , but people remain willfully ignorant and prefer to bask in the warmth of massive rationalizations. The neo-Fabian left has embraced the narrative that libertarians are nothing but bloodthirsty and soulless robber barons; or alternatively anarchists or republicans.

    The right thinks we’re a bunch of godless dope dealers, waving the green flag to the brown people to come in and plant the Mezican flag at the Capitol. Both of the are too busy with party politics and the KULTURE WAR to do anything constructive or responsible and neither wants to do anything about reiginging in the power of the state. A pox on both of them. Fuck ’em.

    When Rome ultimately burns, I’m having a weenie roast.

    1. When Rome ultimately burns, I’m having a weenie roast.

      That Bag’O’Dicks that I addressed to conrges, right? Seeing how they never got a chance to eat them after the Coliseum collapsed on their heads (not enough construction regulations, I’m sure.) Also, seeing how there won’t be anything else to eat.

      They’ll just be normal hotdogs at that point though, since the Bag’O’Dicks wasn’t addressed to you JW.

  27. You are aware that these people were in power from 2001-2006, right? I don’t recall the nation resembling a theocracy during that time.

    This.

    We know that Democrats’ civil-libertarian rhetoric is a stalking horse for a repressive, retrograde regime that clamps down on anything that bothers that folks who happen to be in power (see NYC, SF, the current admin, etc.). Small-government rhetoric could, theoretically, also be that, but oh look?it turns out it isn’t.
    Democrats are dishonestly pandering when they talk like libertarians, no matter what the subject is. (Any wars end lately?) Republicans are dishonestly pandering when they talk like teh theocracy. The GOP isn’t libertarian?no party will ever shrink the state?but it’s far, far less anti-libertarian than TEAM BLUE! is.

    But GOP voters are mostly crackaz, and not being seen siding with them is all that matters to media libertarians.

    1. Democrats are dishonestly pandering when they talk like libertarians

      When they aren’t busy demonizing libertarians for causing all of America’s woes, right?

    2. Abstinence only sex education, giving billions in federal funds to religious organizations, the attempt to prevent deployment of the HPV vaccine or Plan B because sluts might have sex, Medicare Part D, the Surveillance State, a global religious war . . . but yeah, they’re nowhere near as bad as those wascawy wiberahs.

      1. More weak tea and foreign policy. Medicare Part D, as vomitous as it is, does not qualify as “repression” that Gillespie worries about.

        1. Why does calling something “foreign policy” render it unimportant?

          I’m not really a fan of killing even more brown people.

      2. Abstinence-only sex ed only where there is already sex ed in gov’t schools.

        Billions in federal funds to religious organizations only out of the billions already being given, rather than only secular organiz’ns being eligible for the $.

        Preventing mandatory vaccination with HPV, even of little children who are at no risk of contracting HPV, and who will need re-vaccination by the time they’re of such age where it could be useful.

        Surveillance — less so in most cases than where “liberals” predominate.

  28. An anti-GOP thread and no John to do damage control yet? Is Palin speaking somewhere today?

    1. Unlike the rest of us, John clearly has something more fulfilling to do than piss in the wind.

      1. He’s at his spelling class.

        1. Refund time.

    2. Luckily we got our dose of content-free ad hominem from MNG.

    3. He’s probably at a cocktail party.

  29. Dear Nick,

    Nobody runs for office so s/he can leave you the fuck alone.

    Period

    the end.

    xoxo

    1. Actually, I think a lot of people would like to have a Congressman’s job and just sit around doing nothing.

      The problem is that it takes years of shit-trench work to get a party’s stamp of approval to run for a big office…such that no greedy or lazy people can tolerate. So we wind up with all the power-hungry fucks instead.

      1. I would do such a good job of doing nothing.

        I’d never wear one of those flag pins though. Maybe a little button with Bastiat’s profile on it?

  30. Wait a minute, A Separate Peace was gay? That explains the D I got.

    1. I didn’t get the gay, either, except in the recent sense of “boring”, as in “That’s so gay.”

    2. Your lack of understanding that the subtext was gay was why you got the D. Now go watch Top Gun and write a report on that.

      1. So now all of a sudden gentlemen can’t get together and play a simple game of beach volleyball without it being gay. What is with you people? NOT EVERYTHING HAS A SEXUAL COMPONENT.

        Also, Maverick took Kelly McGillis to his bed, and she is all woman. Nothing gay there.

        1. He was thinking of Ice Man the whole time.

        2. she is all woman. Nothing gay there.

          *choke* *splutter*

          Nicely done, sir.

        3. Is that a reference to McGillis marrying a woman?

    3. Reason doesn’t employ comment filtering, so you can spell out “dick” rather than abbreviating it D.

  31. You’re fooling yourself. We’re living in a dictatorship.

    No, we’re living under representative mob rule kleptocracy.

    Dictatorship means only one person gets to oppress us.

    1. Right. A democratic dictatorship or Monarchy would be preferable to what we have. Actually, I’m going anarcho-fascist. We need an authoritarian presence to force freedom on people.

      1. Actually, you are half-correct. It’s a monarch that’s lacking.

    2. Um, That was a Monty Python and the Holy Grail reference, Dennis the Peasant says that to his wife or mother or sister or whoever Eric Idle was playing.

  32. Okay, this is what pains me about the libertarian movement (of both cases of “l”). If Rand fucking Paul is not libertarian enough for you, we are not ever, ever, ever going to get anywhere. Yes, he might have outdated ideas about children having two mommies or whatever, and that certainly lowers my PERSONAL opinion of him (speaking as a lifelong atheist), but the fact remains that he is with us 90% of the time or more. If you cannot accept any candidate except one who not only agrees with you on everything, but also has the exact same moral standards towards everything as you do, you will never, ever get anywhere. As it is, I have determined to vote for any candidate (usually Republicans) who take positions to the left of Obama on civil liberties or foreign policy while also taking a more fiscally conservative position than their opponent. If no candidate fits said criteria (as is the case 90% of the time), I vote third party. If they don’t live up to their promises, I won’t vote for them next time around. I think those are some fairly reasonable criteria for effecting positive change as a voting bloc. We have to accept that we cannot build a 50% or even a 33% voting bloc espousing pure libertarian ideology, but it certainly is possible to nudge the major parties closer to our position and maybe eventually get one or two minor party candidates elected on the side.

    1. If you cannot accept any candidate except one who not only agrees with you on everything, but also has the exact same moral standards towards everything as you do, you will never, ever get anywhere.

      With Mob-Rule-As-Democracy, sure.

      I seem to recall something about “protection of the minority” when it comes to democracy.

    2. Rand Paul wants a Constitutional Amendment stating that life begins at conception, and bans ALL abortions. Sorry, dude. I’d be willing to let a “State’s Rights” position slide, but this is way too extreme for me.

      1. Advocacy for something that absolutely will never come to pass is way too much for you…so you’ll let a heinous career politician like Jack Conway beat him.

      2. That’s right, because it has a snowball’s chance in hell of actually being enacted. Forget about his position on foreign wars and the IRS, he’s threatening the freedom of the vajayjay!

        1. I’m not willing to take that chance.

    3. Heck, the Libertarian Party once even ran someone against Ronald Paul for Congress. Must’ve been the abortions bit.

    4. BTW, what does being an atheist have to do with children’s having two mommies?

      1. BTW, if you wait for the perfect religion, you’ll be an atheist forever too.

        1. Only until you die and spend eternity with demons whose voices sound like Roseanne Barr.

          1. Or Fran Drescher. Dragging her nails on a chalkboard while she talks.

          2. Is that a reference to the feature film version of The Life and Loves of a She Devil?

        2. Who’s waiting? We’ve already found it.

      2. Atheists are generally assumed to have “progressive” ideas on social issues, which I guess I do, being personally pro-choice (although I think Roe v. Wade should be overturned and the matter left to the states), and for gay rights (although I want the government out of marriage entirely and don’t support gay peoples’ rights to take away other peoples’ rights). So yeah.

        Anyways, I’m not waiting for the perfect religion – I think that they’re all complete horseshit. You’re confusing atheists and agnostics.

        1. That’s true of the majority of atheists, largely because many of them seem to be more interested in being on the opposite side of every issue from religious conservatives. On abortion for instance, it’s hard to believe that lack of belief in a God causes one to think that passage through a vagina transforms a nonhuman entity fit to be dismembered and tossed in the garbage into a person with the full gamut of civil rights.

  33. Where’s the coverage of Foreclosuregate??
    Why hasn’t Charles Koch fired that loser Welch yet? Does Matt have pictures of Chuck and David fellating each other or something?
    This is a huge effing story-even that hideous witch McArdle is covering it.
    Anyone?
    Anyone?

    1. Hey Douchimus Maximus

      Go Fuck Yourself

  34. “Okay, this is what pains me about the libertarian movement (of both cases of “l”). If Rand fucking Paul is not libertarian enough for you, we are not ever, ever, ever going to get anywhere.”

    Ray, your mistake is assuming the Reason gang want to ‘get anywhere’. Why would they? You make hay out of low-hanging fruit (Government corruption, abuse by authority), and then make sure to never, ever put any political skin in the game. Sure, you’ll never have any impact on actual politics, but you’ll get invited to all the right parties and places. All without having to answer for the messy world of political action, so you’re always clean as a whistle. Professional Permanent Political Theory Freshman. Not a bad gig.

    1. I think you got their number right on the button.

    2. Never assume malice when incompetence is a plausible explanation.

    3. You get invited to all the right parties by being a libertarian? What are you talking about? Where’s this high society of libertarians who turn their noses up at both political parties, all the while socializing with the elites at cocktail parties? I’ve never heard of a “right” party that has any interest in what libertarians say.

      1. It’s like dinner for schmucks.

      2. That’s the crowd the ‘paleotarians’, ‘Mises’-ians, and C4L likes to deride as ‘cosmo’ or ‘beltway’ libertarians. That is, if you like to use pejoratives in order to tag political antagonists of the same, basic family.

    4. Gotta remember their tax deductible foundation status. There’s a lot they simply aren’t allowed to do.

  35. “That’s a real problem in building a true limited-government coalition because I know plenty of liberals (including gays and lesbians and single women!) who would be basically ready to sign onto a libertarian anti-government agenda if they didn’t feel deep down that it’s simply a way for the state to control their lifestyles.”

    Give me a fucking break.

    Give me this massive list of how “control of lifestyles” is occurring through the federal GOP. Then, filter out all of the examples that the left isn’t actually as bad or worse on. It will probably come down to:

    1) federal non-recognition of same-sex “marriage” (as opposed to civil unions)
    2) abortion

    I completely fail to see how enforcement of 1) is “control of lifestyles”–it’s not like they’re legislating against people holding homosexual lifestyles. The only effective difference it creates is a tax break; sorry if I’m not exactly outraged given the fact that the tax code is already completely arbitrary.

    2) is an issue for libertarians.

    Now let’s look at what social “control” issues conservatives are better on:

    1) Drugs.

    Conservatives increasingly see this in view of a 10th amendment interpretation. The poster-child Justice of the right, Clarence Thomas, clearly voted against a commerce clause interpretation of regulating marijuana.

    2) Speech.

    Conservatives are more against speech restrictions, whether in academia, the internet (net-“neutrality”), free speech by corporations, or even that which can be construed as hate speech. (Tell me, are your gay friends cool with that?)

    3) Education

    Conservatives are for choice in educational opportunity through vouchers and do not kow-tow to the unions.

    4) Healthcare and nutrition issues

    Tell me, is Obamacare this paragon of choice that will not somehow eventually “control” the “lifestyles” of peoples’ eating decisions, smoking decisions, etc. like it does with every other socialized medical system in the world?

    5) Guns and personal defense

    This one needs no explanation.

    Also, I fail to see how a person expressing an opinion regarding their personal view of morality is tantamount to “controlling” a person’s life. The continued stream of examples this site rails on are almost always from a person’s life outside of politics. All of the candidates profess non-discrimination in the legal sphere, even if they engage in moral discrimination in personally endorsing certain behaviors. Tell me, is it O.K. to have a different belief about what is moral and what is legal, or should it all be one and the same, effectively legislating morality?

    The fact that you guys continue to bring up these issues that have absolutely zero effect on ever impacting legislation shows just how embroiled in identity politics you are. It’s all style over substance.

    We have a combined federal, state, and budget of 6.4 trillion dollars out of 14.6 trillion dollars for 44% of total GDP.

    This is 44% slavery, and the vast majority of that control over the lives of American citizens’ lives is because of leftist ideology and the social welfare state.

    1. I guess we are still living in the 80s. I hadn’t realized the Christian Conservatives gave up on the GOP and have no influence. That’s why Obama won, because the Cristain Conservatives couldn’t vote for McCain, and stayed home?

      But then there’s the issues of perpetual war, civil liberties, torture, Gitmo, military tribunals, the Patriot Act…should I go on? I didn’t even get into corporate subsidies or regulatory capture.

      1. Once again–show me where the Democrats are not just as bad, if not worse, on those issues.

        * war – still continuing
        * civil liberties – such as?
        * torture – still occurring
        * Gitmo – still there
        * military tribunals – still there
        * Patriot Act – actually accelerated
        * corporate subsidies – Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, TARP (which was majority Democrat passed), General Electric’s (and hence MSNBC’s) $137 billion dollar loan guarantee and Jeff Immelt’s appointment to the NY Fed for support of Obama, green “jobs” and subsidies, the breakage of the rule of law in the Chrysler bankruptcy for the unions, actual ownership of General Motors…..

        1. It’s $139 billion. But other than that accurate.

        2. What’s so great about being “not as bad”? The lesser of two evils, is still evil.

          1. Because there is this meme in the libertarian-o-sphere that conservatives are on balance better on “economic” issues and modern liberals are better on “social” issues; drugs, healthcare & nutrition, speech, education, and guns are social issues.

            It is simply not true that the left is on-balance more libertarian on “social” issues, but they are definitely worse on economic issues.

            1. Neither are good on either. What part of that don’t you understand?

              1. You’re worth less than the toilet paper whose cylindrical integrity you defend, dude.

              2. What I don’t understand is your indifference to degrees of imperfection.

                1. Oh, gee, the Republicans only suck 86%, while the Democrats suck 94%. Wow! I should vote for someone who works against me 86% of the time, so I can WIN! Yay! I’m a winner!

                  1. Oh, gee, the Republicans only suck 86%, while the Democrats suck 94%. Wow! I should vote for someone who works against me 86% of the time, so I can WIN! Yay! I’m a winner!

                    Communist sympathizers started voting for Democrats in large numbers in 1972, even though the Democratic Party had a reputation for being anti-Communist.

                    Ten years later, they were the Democrats’ base.

                  2. Yes, Penguin, exactly. Like when AT&T advertised that the price difference between their service and MCI’s was just pennies a minute, but MCI then advertised that their service was the same, so why not save a few pennies a minute? Why not spare us of 8% of suck?

          2. Mr. Whipple, have us come batter you while you’re suffering from a terrible disease. What would be great about not being beaten up while you’re still horribly ill? The greater of 2 evils is still just evil, right?

            1. And greater!

            2. Perhaps the greater of two evils would be preferable. It will bring about an end, sooner.

              1. An end to what?

            3. If you stick a knife in someone’s back, and pull it out a little bit, you’re not really doing that person a favor.

          3. So if I understand you correctly, you are preferring the greater of two evils?

      2. Dude, repeat after me- Republicans are not conservatives.

        That wasn’t so difficult, was it?

      3. But then there’s the issues of perpetual war, civil liberties, torture, Gitmo, military tribunals, the Patriot Act…should I go on? I didn’t even get into corporate subsidies or regulatory capture.

        What is wrong with military tribunals?

    2. 2) Speech.

      Conservatives are more against speech restrictions, whether in academia, the internet (net-“neutrality”), free speech by corporations, or even that which can be construed as hate speech. (Tell me, are your gay friends cool with that?)

      I seem to recall the Bush DOJ’s #1 prosecution priority was pr0n and obscenity. But I could be mistaken.

      1. Right. Where’s Howard Stern?

        1. He was being waterboarded in GITMO till Obama shut it down.

          1. Then he was renditioned to, where was it, oh yeah, Romania. For a haircut and dental work.

      2. Once again–is that social measure on proportion as bad as complete administrative regulation through net “neutrality” and broadcast localism from the FCC, the complete lack of tolerance in academia for dissenting views, or trying to restrict the ability for any corporate entity in the U.S. to actually engage in free speech. Also, it was that wonderful “civil libertarian” Feingold who gave us the bill after his namesake.

        You give an example where the FCC is regulating one guy. The Democrats would like to use the FCC forcibly regulate broadcast localism and have sown the seeds for regulating the entire internet through net neutrality.

        How is this not just a little worse, but way worse?

        1. Not only that, but it was one of the Democrats’ commissioners who really pushed the indecency fines.

      3. I seem to recall the Bush DOJ’s #1 prosecution priority was pr0n and obscenity.

        Another complete and utter failure in practice. Not a single work of mainstream pornography was kept out of the hands of masturbators during the Bush administration. I’ll grant that the milk enema shit shouldn’t have been prosecuted, but again this is extremely weak tea to be elevated to the level of “repression”. (And Obama continued the prosecution of that and Stagliano too)

  36. “I know plenty of liberals (including gays and lesbians and single women!) who would be basically ready to sign onto a libertarian anti-government agenda if they didn’t feel deep down that it’s simply a way for the state to control their lifestyles.”

    So true.
    I had a conversation with a capital “D” Democrat coworker who basically said this very thing. He’s disenchanted with his party right now, but is fearful that if Republicans gain power, they will start trying to implement their version of social coercion and control.

    1. but is fearful that if Republicans gain power, they will start trying to implement their version of social coercion and control.

      They will. It tastes about the same as the Democrat varietygoing down, but burns just as much coming out.

      1. Yep. You said it much better, but that’s basically what I told him.

    2. Like the kind we had between 2001 and 2006?

      Your cow-orker is clearly trying to rationalize his or her continued support of Dems despite their bad behavior.

    3. Reason Readin Female|10.16.10 @ 5:32PM|#

      “I know plenty of liberals (including gays and lesbians and single women!) who would be basically ready to sign onto a libertarian anti-government agenda if they didn’t feel deep down that it’s simply a way for the state to control their lifestyles.”

      Sure sounds like rationalization. How would an ‘anti-government agenda’ promote ‘state control’ of anything?

      1. it might be an insincere rationaliz’n, or it might be a sincere belief based on either:

        1) lack of understanding of “control”, or

        2) belief that libertarians lie about the agenda.

      2. I chalk it up more to fear than rational thinking.

        Republicans generally *talk* about smaller government, but rarely follow through when it comes to many social issues. (e.g. stem cell research, gay marriage, etc.)

        Add to that the fact that he’s a lifelong fanatical Democrat, & the fear and loathing he has for Republicans will over-rule any rational impulse that may exist.

        1. Funding more research and expanding the parameters of marriage are growing government–neither has anything to do with making government smaller.

    4. It seems to me the “conservative” version of social control is much more marginal than is the “liberal”. With “conservatives” you get things like NJ’s limiting the number of medical marijuana dispensaries to 4 instead of at least 6 (as the statute called for), while with “liberals” you get bans on smoking in public.

      Much of the time, the tussle between “left” and “right” regards use of gov’t facilities & programs. The “right”, given their druthers, would in many cases agree completely with the radical libertarian in wanting to abolish that program entirely — for instance, gov’t schools and arts & humanities grants. However, they’re hemmed in on that front by the “left”, which wants a greater sphere of influence for the state. In that environment, the “right” goes for the few crumbs it can get in the form of content prescriptions and proscriptions, to balance the same on the part of the “left”. On these issues (which make up a large fraction of the “social” policy sphere), “conservatives” are like the dog who appears angry and snarling because he’s tied up, but who when let loose is docile.

    5. Got any more details about your conversation? I’d like to know what the co-worker thought their version of social coercion & control might be. I also wonder how much of it would be not a direct matter of getting people in place to execute policies, but rather a matter of “feeling their oats” by demonstrating their numbers and hence exerting more social influence by non-governmental and non-violent means.

      1. He was more worried about the lousy record Republicans have on gay rights, MJ legalization, and abortion to name a few.

        Frankly, I was *shocked* that he even suggested he was considering voting Republican. (WA state Senator, to be exact) He will no doubt vote Democrat, but we’ve had many discussions about the need for a “loyal opposition” at the national level.

        Also, he’s more Statist than Liberal, so all the smoking ban, anti-car, food police, & social engineering through punitive taxation ideas are all good policy to him. He doesn’t really believe me when I tell him both the left and the right curtail freedom, albeit for different reasons, and in different ways.

  37. Not to respond to anything specific in the comments, but Nick’s HnR posting is about perfect for how republicans seem to view libertarian types.

  38. “Why oh why does it seem that everyone who wants to save a nickel in federal spending has to also have a fixation on gay- and single-woman sex when she is not calling for drug testing for losing your job in the worst recession in years?”

    There are many different answers to this question.

    1. Because the Republican Party (like the Dems), is partially controlled by interest groups many of whom represent the Religious Right.

    2. In many of the states you’ve mentioned, Social Conservatism is the dominant ideology (Kentucky and South Carolina). And I think it’s safe to say that if the Democratic Party was socially conservative/while taking a Clintonian approach to economic/fiscal issues,(triangulation, “the defender of social security and medicare!”), than states like Kentucky would still be in the Democratic Column.

    3. As long as most conservatives are strongly socially conservative, and they represent the base of the Party of the Right, (Republicans), then rhetoric like that will remain the norm. Therefore you’d either have to convince base conservative voters to drop their focus on social issues entirely, (unlikely), or find a “new” base for the Party that doesn’t care about those issues. And that base has to be large enough to help win elections. The “center” would be the only real option, but unfortuantely the center is just as complicated as the right. Represented by everybody from Blue Dog Dems to Bill Clinton to Evan Bayh to Lincoln Chafee to Colin Powell. There is no ideological foundation in centrist politics to build a lasting political party.

    1. As long as most conservatives are strongly socially conservative, and they represent the base of the Party of the Right, (Republicans), then rhetoric like that will remain the norm. Therefore you’d either have to convince base conservative voters to drop their focus on social issues entirely, (unlikely), or find a “new” base for the Party that doesn’t care about those issues. And that base has to be large enough to help win elections. The “center” would be the only real option, but unfortuantely the center is just as complicated as the right. Represented by everybody from Blue Dog Dems to Bill Clinton to Evan Bayh to Lincoln Chafee to Colin Powell. There is no ideological foundation in centrist politics to build a lasting political party.

      So how did a bunch of Communist sympathizers take over what was then a staunchly anti-Communist party (the Democrats)?

      1. By giving shit to losers.

        Is that really the model that libertarians want to emulate?

        1. You mean a successful one? Apparently not, I’m afraid, for many of them.

          1. You mean a successful one? Apparently not, I’m afraid, for many of them.

            Many libertarians are not willing to do what it takes to succeed.

            1. What is your definition of ‘success’? An elected position? Or influencing the voting public?
              What good is lying about my ideology to get elected, then voting for what I really want? How long do you think you would stay in office for? Republicans and Dems stay in office because their constituents don’t give a shit when they lie to them. That’s fine if it works for the statist assholes, but how is that going to work out for a libertarian? If a libertarian sleezes and stacks the chips to stay in power against the will of his constituents, in all odds he’s not a fucking libertarian in the first place.

    2. The observations in #3 above are profound, but the first of them in that para. leads to the more important and deeper question, which is why there is such a cluster of beliefs identified as “socially conservative” or “traditionalist”, and why it makes up a part of “conservatism”.

      My analysis is that what we currently see as “traditionalism” is a cluster of beliefs that arose as a response to the Crusades and the great plagues of around that time. However, another analysis points to the mother/father dichotomy as pointed out by Robert Anton Wilson, P.J. O’Rourke, and others — but that leads to the question of where that dichotomy arises from; it may be sociobiologic. Yet another analysis is that “conservatism” is the reaction to the leveling movements in recent centuries which have been various mixtures of libertarianism and egalitarianism, taking in both the socialistic and the anarchistic. Then there’s also the parent-child relationship, wherein the child wants both freedom from restraint and to be given what the parents have earned, while the parents must exercise restraint and keep from going broke.

      The other matter in para. #3 is given as a statement, but I’m not sure it’s correct; that the political center cannot build a lasting political party. I think that in many countries a political party has been found to gravitate to and occupy the center. It might’ve happened in the USA except that the politics of the 2 major parties are so centrist in effect that they co-occupy the center, enough to leave little room to squeeze between — except sometimes in terms of their rhetoric. If the parties ever diverged enough in practice, there would be room for a center party even though it would encompass great diversity. Its ideologic foundation? Moderation in all things political.

  39. I’m somewhere between conservative and libertarian, and I vote Republican. I think they’re a heck of a lot better than the Democrats on almost every small government issue I care about.

    Clearly, some of you need some PoliSci 101 lessons about how our system works.

    Our congressmen and senators are elected in a first-past-the-post, winner-take-all system. That is, in any congressional election, only one person gets to represent you in Congress, and it’s the guy who has the most votes. This kind of system tends to develop into a two-party system. You can daydream about third parties all you want, but outside of very exceptional circumstances, one of the two parties is going to win.

    Anyone who watches politics in this country closely can figure out pretty quickly that it’s the activists who choose party nominees in every contest from alderman to President.

    Given these two observations, the ONLY way you are going to win this country to libertarianism is to get involved with one of the two parties. You’ll either have to bring enough friends with you to seize control, or you’ll have to convert enough of the people already there, or some combination of the two. (Hint: this will be easier with the GOP.)

    Until you take this approach, you can forget about your libertarian utopia.

    1. How many other democracies have two-party systems?

      1. How many democracies elect their chief executive separate from the parliament? Comparatively few. Divided govt is a rare thing even in the democratic world, so coalition govts make more sense, as if you’re in the minority you have no influence over policy whatsoever.

        In the history of the US, there have only briefly been periods where more than two viable parties existed, even before the current Democratic or Republican parties existed.

      2. There are like one or two other democracies with first-past-the-post system, so the question is kind of irrelevant.

        But that doesn’t mean, like this person seems to suggest, that new parties can’t arise. There are also plenty of examples of third party candidates winning or getting large margins in not just local but state and federal elections.

        1. Wrong. Plurality elections of individuals (1st past the post) are a very common voting method around the world. Proportional representation of party slates is common too, but not so predominant as you apparently think.

          1. Very few democracies have separate elections for the executive and the legislature.

            1. I wouldn’t say very few. In the Western Hemisphere the great majority of them do. In Europe France does, partially — they have both a separately elected president and a legislatively elected ministry. I’m sure a lot of other countries on various continents have separate elections too that I’m forgetting or just didn’t know about, just projecting.

        2. There may well be “plenty of examples of third party candidates … at the federal level”. Name one who won and had any large impact on policy.

          Ross Perot was the last non-Dem/GOP candidate who had a serious impact on policy in this country, and it wasn’t because he founded the Reform Party. America’s historical tradition is that when a political movement gains sufficient strength, its issues get incorporated into one of the existing parties. Republicans won control of Congress in 1994 largely because they co-opted Perot’s program.

          That’s why I suggest that libertarians try to organize to take over the GOP rather than continue to run as a third party. It’s essentially what the Tea Party movement is doing by running their candidates (and winning) in Republican primaries.

          1. Any politician who gets elected under the R or D brand will be beholden to the party leaders. They will also be beholden to the powers that control and influence the that party. I think it is foolish to think that the power structure, that is so deeply ingrained, can be taken down from within. It may be foolish as well, to believe that there can be a viable third-party, but I’ll take my chances with the third-party. A third party, that for 39 has not sacrificed its principles for political gain.

            And secondly, I am not all that impressed with these Tea Party candidates. What they call a feature (no centralized platform or leadership), I call a serious flaw. That’s why they have candidates like Christine O’Donnell and Palladino. Many of the Tea Party candidates do not understand the very basic principles of libertarianism, to begin with. The linchpin of modern libertarianism is the axiom of non-aggression.

            1. Any politician who gets elected under the R or D brand will be beholden to the party leaders.

              For example, Ron Paul and Jeff Flake.

              Not to mention people we don’t like like DeMint and Palin, but who constantly fuck with their party’s leaders.

          2. Ross Perot was an arrogant prick. So is Nader. Political parties must be built from the ground, up, like a house, and it must be built on a sound foundation, like principles. Not, from the top, down. You can’t run for the highest office in the land, and expect to get anywhere without a base. The LP has 157 elected officials across this country, most in local and county positions. That’s how you build a party. I’m not interested in “taking over” an already statist party.

      3. Wait, we have two parties?

        … Hobbit

    2. Did you say utopia???

      1. This thread gives me a Hammer in my Heart.

    3. Given these two observations, the ONLY way you are going to win this country to libertarianism is to get involved with one of the two parties. You’ll either have to bring enough friends with you to seize control, or you’ll have to convert enough of the people already there, or some combination of the two. (Hint: this will be easier with the GOP.)

      It will also take a huge paradigm shift which would allow a political party’s base to change.

      For example, the Democratic Party had an anti-Communist plank in their platform after World War I. The anti-Communist plank was strengthened when the Cold War started.

      It was in the aftermath of the Vietnam War that Communist sympathizers managed to take over the Democratic Party.

      1. What happened was that “Communist” came quickly to mean “Russian” — aided of course by the correct perception that the CPUSA was a Soviet front. For a while “Nazi” meant “German”, then it became some combination of “racist” and “mean” (as in “Soup Nazi”).

        As long as you weren’t for foreign rule of the USA, no problem for the Democrats since the late 1960s. It wasn’t even quite the aftermath yet of the Vietnamese war, it was more around the defeat of Humphrey for POTUS.

    4. WHAT THE HELL did the Republicans cut during six years of total federal control? NOTHING, other than taxes. And even that was done badly, because it brought us trillions in debt.

      No, tax cuts without spending cuts does not make Republicans “more libertarian” than Democrats.

      The GOP is every bit as bad as the Democrats. Learn it, live it and love it.

      1. The GOP is every bit as bad as the Democrats. Learn it, live it and love it.

        Communist symapthizers considered the Democratic Party to be “bad” in the sense that they opposed Communism. But they worked within the party to gain power, and by 1980, they were the Democrats’ base.

        That is the problem with you people. You want to elect a libertarian majority now , instead of working within the system to build coalitions.

        In 1960, few people would believe that Communist sympathizers would have any sort of influence in Democratic primary elections, let alone general elections. And yet, in 1980 people who wanted to win nominations in the Democratic primaries had to pander to Communist sympathizers.

        1. I fail to see how libertarians can work hand-in-hand with authoritarians. That’s what Republicans and Democrats are. What success have libertarians had by throwing in with the GOP?

          The only difference is that the Republicans are honest. They admit they have no principles. Democrats lie and say they do.

          1. I fail to see how libertarians can work hand-in-hand with authoritarians. That’s what Republicans and Democrats are. What success have libertarians had by throwing in with the GOP?

            It is something that takes time.

            Communist sympathizers started working with a staunchly anti-Communist party. In a decade, they became that party’s base.

            1. You’ve repeated this assertion five times in this thread, but it’s pretty dubious. Staunchly anti-Communist? The party of FDR?

              And it’s not like the Republicans were not anti-Communist.

              1. How Liberals Lost a Liberal .

                The issue that began the emotionally difficult task of getting this liberal to identify with conservatives and become an active Republican was Communism. I had always identified the Democratic Party and liberalism with anti-Communism. Indeed, the labor movement and the Democratic Party actually led American opposition to Communism. It was the Democrat Harry Truman, not Republicans, who made the difficult and unpopular decision to fight another war just a few years after World War II ? the war against Chinese and Korean Communists. It was Democrats ? John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson ? who also led the war against Chinese and Vietnamese Communists.

                Also, the New Deal is more akin to Benito Mussolini’s economic policies than Joseph Stalin’s.

                1. Actually it was Ike who first sent troops to Vietnam…not that anyone should credit him for that. Fighting stupid wars over strategically unimportant territories like Vietnam and Korea (neither of which was on Acheson’s “domino theory” list) is hardly sufficient or necessary to make one Anti-Communist.

                  Also, JFK sat idly by while the Soviets built the Berlin wall, in violation of multiple treaties, right under the noses of the Allied occupation forces in West Berlin.

              2. Tulpa, of what relevance is the GOP’s anti-Communism to this question?

                OK, suppose you don’t believe the Democrats changed from anti-Communist to comsymps. Do you believe the major political parties now stand for the same things they always did? If not, why do you think they changed?

                Look for instance at how the GOP changed as a result of religious “right” activism in the late 1970s. Rockefeller Republicans just don’t have anything like the clout they used to have in their party.

                1. The religious right had and has far greater numbers than libertarians do, so that phenomenon is irrelevant to Ejercito’s point.

    5. I think they’re a heck of a lot better than the Democrats on almost every small government issue I care about.

      Well, gee, Allen, they are not better on the small government issues I care about, so hopefully that helps explain why I don’t give a shit if some asshole has an R or D next to their names.

      Admittedly, if Gary Johnson, Ron Paul, or even Tom Tancredo ran, I would vote for them in the primary (in that order of preference), and possibly in the general. Why? Because those rare outliers are better than typical small government policies that I care about.

      1. You’re saying you don’t care about gun rights, school choice, or non-socialized medicine.

  40. J sub D said,

    I’m a libertarian. Tell me what issues, hell what single issue, the GOP is good on.

    Here is a better question J sub

    Tell me what issues, hell what single issue, the democrats are not worse than the republicans on.

    The obama administration is appealing the ruling against DADT and the obama administration is promising to ignore prop 19 if it passes. Don’t forget obamacare that massive slab of statism obama and the democrats jammed through congress against overwhelming public opposition.

    Anyone who thinks the democrats are better than the republicans has been listening to democrats speeches and not watching what the democrats do.

    1. The lesser of 2 evils is still evil. And lesser.

      1. So if you have to take a dump, and your only options are a dank, disgusting public toilet and the dark space behind a dumpster where you hear rats running around … your choice is to crap your pants.

        1. No, I hold it until I get home.

          I take great pride on my shit-holding powers.

          1. Unfortunately, the American electoral anus is not as tight as yours. The shit will come out on November 6, whether you choose where it happens or not.

          2. The trouble is you never get home. You have no home. You have to make a home. Your choices for starting material are the dank, disgusting public toilet and the dark space behind the dumpster. Unless you’re an idiot, you start building around the dank, disgusting public toilet.

            1. I just hope they have toilet paper there because I’m not walking home with diaper rash again, bitches.

              1. No means no, bitches.

                I choose the homeless libertarian guys under the bridge. They at least have a barrel fire to warm myself by, a hole in the ground for me shit in and old magazines to wipe with.

                At last, the metaphors have finally come full circle.

          1. You’d know about shitting your pants, Charmin man.

    2. Of course the Democrats comprise millions of people, as do the Republicans, so surely there are some Democrats better than some Republicans. But if you play the odds, you’ll bet Republican. Better knowledge in individual cases could reverse your bet, of course.

  41. I logged onto Reason.com to see what the cosmotard take on the great expanding foreclosure crisis was and what I found was…this shit. The GOP are dirt bags and I would never advocate voting for any of them, but they are not nearly as despicable as Welch and Gillespie. Republicrats divide and conquer the electorate. Reasonoids divide and conquer libertarians.

    1. What’s wrong, forget to buy title insurance?

    2. Yeah, looking at the last 10 blog posts, they’ve been covering:
      the bullshit that is Obamacare,
      the pushback against Citizens United,
      Prop 19 and the likely Obama administration’s reaction to its victory,
      School choice,
      2nd amendment rights

      Oh, but they didn’t cover the one issue you wanted to see, (in your unspecified time frame – there has been no shortage of posts on the foreclosure issue) so they’re not libertarianish enough for thee. Well, why don’t you go the fuck back to lewrockwell.com? Or just somewhere else – anywhere else?

      1. No shortage? When was the last post on the issue?
        It’s pretty obvious that Reason’s main function is to protect the libertarian flank of the Establishment.

    3. I logged onto Reason.com to see what the cosmotard take on the great expanding foreclosure crisis was and what I found was…this shit. The GOP are dirt bags and I would never advocate voting for any of them, but they are not nearly as despicable as Welch and Gillespie. Republicrats divide and conquer the electorate. Reasonoids divide and conquer libertarians.

      The only way for libertarians to win is to take over one of the two parties.

      Back in the 1960’s, there was no way Communist sympathizers could possibly have electoral success; they became a significant electoral force in the 1970’s.

      1. Will you shut the hell up with that already? It isn’t even true and you’ve repeated about 50 times.

        1. Seriously. Watching the GOP-authoritarians herd “libertarians” around like sheep, makes me laugh. Both parties want to spy on you, use your body to fight their wars, spend money we don’t have, and engage in graft.

          1. But only one party has decent individuals in it like Gary Johnson, Rand Paul, and DeMinty. Fuck parties-can we just compare candidates already.

  42. As a voter, it just means I have to decide if sexual civil liberties nightmare that the GOP want to inflict on us is credible. I don’t see that. Maybe 20 years or even 10 years ago, the masturbatory musings of a social conservative could have had been realised in the state, but now not so much. We give social conservatives too much credit when in reality they are weak.

    Gay marriage will happen either in the form of civil unions or real marriages. More and more people don’t care anymore where people park their cocks. The courts can easily roll back stupidities like banning single women or gay men from education. Tell me what is a credible, realizable theocratic incursion on civil liberties? Abortion will never be repealed. No one will enslave single women or ban contraception.

    But I am more afraid of the increased size of the state in political and fiscal matters, because the threats are real, credible and being realized right now.

    However, we can’t underestimate how much the silly, pie-in-sky, improbable, theocratic, wet dream fantasies of the social conservatives undermine the message. Being socially liberal is fashionable. It is a fashionable among the youth, it is the cool thing in media. You can advocate for all manner of economic theft, but if you are cool with gays, and sexually liberated and don’t smoke, you are still a saint in the eyes of the establishment. That sharia musings are interspersed with the message of smaller government, isn’t doing our cause any good.

    Nevertheless, I will hold my nose and vote for team red this year, especially because of the control of team blue on the organs of power. Team red will be an imperfect voice for libertarian principles in the economic and political sphere. But I will take that, I am desperate enough to take it for ass for now. So yeah rape me a little for now, for a little while until Obama gets out of office.

    1. Why don’t you vote your conscience, and vote LP? The only wasted vote, is one for the political power structure. Like I said, I’ll vote left-libertarian (Anarchy or Green Party) before I vote R or D.

      1. Putting more team red people in office will make the smooth sailing of Obama’s policies a little more bumpy and maybe the stem the tide of an explosive state. I will take the small chance over no chance with a libertarian candidate.

        1. Good for you. I will not sacrifice my principles.

          1. If you really had ‘principles’, you would vote strategically to implement them. That means voting for some of TEAM RED’s tolerable condidates, like Angle and Donnel, and not for Paladino types. But it isn’t about principles for you; it’s about thumbing your nose in an emotional fit. Because everyone knows that if you don’t vote for the dysfunctional joke of a party that is the LP, why then your just part of the mindless mob. Your way is the only way for the truly free.

    2. Being socially liberal is fashionable. It is a fashionable among the youth, it is the cool thing in media. You can advocate for all manner of economic theft, but if you are cool with gays, and sexually liberated and don’t smoke, you are still a saint in the eyes of the establishment.

      Why is social liberalism fashionable?

      And does not the fact that social liberals, to a man, support increasing the deficit to expand the welfare state, even if welfare is handed out to drug addicts and sex offenders, demonstrate something about social liberalism?

  43. For a mostly smart man, sometimes Nick Gillespie shows a streak of being retarded.

    Of course, politicians and bureaucrats are right to set rules that require passing drug tests as condition to get welfare.

    That’s what Officialdom does. It’s their system, their absconded money, their rules.

    If Nick Gillespie were smart, which sometimes we must wonder about him, he would agree and say this is what people get when they give up Freedom for Officialdom.

    Instead, Nick Gillespie should agitate to end income taxation as a means to pay for welfare as income taxation amounts to involuntary association, in short, slavery.

    All too often, Nick Gillespie and Matt Welch strike at a few twigs and branches, not seeing the tree, let alone the forest.

    1. Unfortunately the instant concern regards unemployment benefits — you know, getting back some of the money your employer was forced to pay for unemployment insurance. Oh, sure, get another job; most employers don’t require drug testing, after all. But it’s not like you can make somebody hire you.

  44. What is it with “libertarians” like Nick Gillespie who want the government to give 99 weeks of welfare hecks to lazy layabout dopers?

    As for DeMint: When I was 18 I thought everyone should try smoking weed. I never thought the government should force them to. Has DeMint introduced any legislation mandating chaste school teachers?

    No?

    Has DeMint indicated as Senat Majority leader he will uphold a strict interpretation of the Constitution. Why yes he has, and establishment Republicans are scared shitless.

    1. lazy layabout dopers

      Coming from a guy who cold extracts more opiates than I do, this is kind of funny.

      1. I was thinking the same thing. I suppose he’s just pissed because they’re doing it w/ government money.

        BTW, I quit about a month ago. Sobriety (and the legal alternatives, like beer) suck just as much as I remembered.

        1. Why would you do a crazy thing like that?

          Do we have to call you SoberPenguin now? Or UnbakedPenguin? Or Burgess Meredith?

          1. Maybe “BrokePenguin”. Which should explain a lot of things.

    2. I had the same thought. I don’t like drug testing, but if you are dependent on the government, they get to call to call the shots. I have limited sympathy for people who live off the government, and encourage programs where people do so, and then get bit in the ass because it comes with strings attached. The solution is never to do away with the programs, mind you.

    3. “Why yes he has, and establishment Republicans are scared shitless.”

      [citation needed]

    4. “Controversy over DeMint’s position on this issue first arose in 2004 during a Senate debate, when he was asked whether he agreed with the state party’s platform that said openly gay teachers should be barred from teaching public school. DeMint said he agreed with that position because government shouldn’t be endorsing certain behaviors.”

  45. Of course, politicians and bureaucrats are right to set rules that require passing drug tests as condition to get welfare.

    And banning the use of Food Stamps to buy “sugary drinks”. But tell me, who is going to pay for those drug tests? They’re not cheap. The NJ State Prison system tried it, and found that drug testing inmates was too expensive.

    1. The SC proposal supported by Haley mandated that:

      The idea was proposed last year during Legislative debate, but some argued denying benefits to those who fail a drug test is unconstitutional. State Sen. David Thomas, R-Greenville, proposed the department conduct a urine drug test on a random sample of 500 first-time benefit recipients, and report the findings to the General Assembly by Nov. 1.

      If more than 10 percent of the random sample tested positive for drug use, then 3 percent of all new benefit recipients would have to be drug tested going forward as of Feb. 1, 2011. The legislation, which was withdrawn, would also have required lawmakers to be drug tested.

      1. What about people on Methadone maintenance?

        1. Typically they already test them, if for no other reason than to be sure they’re getting enough methadone.

        2. And by “getting” I mean “taking”, and not, for instance, selling it.

        3. Allowing them to buy heroin in a free market would be much cheaper.Methadone is fucking poison. Would anyone at all use it if alternatives were freely available?

          1. Because it’s much longer acting. If I had chronic pain as an outpatient, I think I’d prefer methadone to heroin. With heroin I’d probably wake up during the night from pain.

            1. And be able to dip into your supply of cheap Philip-Morris heroin.

  46. Talking about the gays. Look who just got fired from FrumForum.

  47. I don’t see what the problem is. DeMint only said unmarried women shouldn’t sleep with their boyfriends. He didn’t say unmarried men shouldn’t sleep with their girlfriends. Works for me, I just won’t date a teacher.

    1. Right, I guess he has no problem with women who sleep with random guys they meet at a bar.

      1. I don’t either!

        1. I do!

    2. Most politicians have no problem sleeping with random women. They definitely would hate if their wives did it though.

      1. Hell, I WISH Hillary had slept with random women. Then I coulda joined, or at least she wouldn’ta kept asking me to give it to her.

        1. Whaddya think she was doing while you were nailing the intern? Madayln Albright, that’s what!

          1. Hmm, maybe I didn’t want to join that one after all.

  48. “I should note that I can’t legally vote for any of the folks above anyway, even if I wanted to.”

    Don’t let that stop you. I had dead people voting for me.

  49. The only Libertarians that count are the ones rational enough to pick a side.

    1. The rest are being used.

      1. Or ignored.

        1. That is so true. The libertarians who chose a side in 2008 by voting for Obushma, sorry, Obama, because he promised to be fiscally responsible, dial back the surveillance state and be more moderate on issues like gay rights and harsh drug laws totally didn’t get used or ignored once he got into power.

          1. At least they did matter, but anyone who voted for Obama was not a libertarian. You are right they got used after they mattered.

            1. I don’t understand. You said the only libertarians who count are the ones who pick a side. But, you later say those who picked the Obama side in 2008 aren’t libertarians.

              Do you mean there are therefore no libertarians who count, or do you mean the only ones who count are those who pick sides and vote Republican?

              1. “do you mean the only ones who count are those who pick sides and vote Republican?”

                Deductively that’s the only possible answer. Congratulations, you win! You have successfully followed the clues to the truth.

                To be a libertarian that matters, you must vote for a party that can win. Now how libertarian are you? Too much to count?

                1. In this upcoming election, perhaps for the first time in my life, I will vote Republican. Not because they are more libertarian than the Democrats (they’re not), but because gridlock (ie, Republican congress, Democrat president) is the best outcome one can hope for from a libertarian perspective this fall. If both parties are neutered, perhaps the rest of America can get our lives. 2014 may be a very different story. I’m not sure who I will vote for then.

                  However, I still think if this happens, and Republicans take over congress, the libertarians will be, again, used and ignored. Republicans will again propose insane socially conservative legislation, and show very little interesting in small government and fiscal responsibility. Regardless, since they and O will disagree on how to waste your and my tax dollars, perhaps less will get wasted.

  50. I’m not voting until maybe 2012. I don’t think I can take voting for someone and having them do the exact opposite. I don’t have enough to hire a good lawyer and I really don’t want to go to prison.

  51. Funny how Nick and Matt don’t feel a need to write a “why I’m not a libera/progressive/democrat” article.

  52. So to summarize:

    1) Nick Gillespie thinks that welfare, in all of its modern forms, is a constitutional right, that can only be abrogated after ‘due process’.

    2) Eliminating departments of the federal government is :
    a) Racist and/or homophobic
    b) Crazy
    c) Unconstitutional

    And this guy is a libertarian?

    RIGHT

    1. I don’t care. He’s got a leather jacket and he writes well. Definitely one of my favorites from the current staff.

    2. Maybe you should reread the Sparknotes on this article.

  53. Seeking purity in politics is like seeking virginity in a prostitute. If I have to go that route, I prefer to get laid by the cleanest, healthiest, yet still reasonably priced whore. While the lesser of two evil is still evil, it is also less evil.

    1. But you’re still bangin’ a hooker…

      1. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but you seem to think it’s still an evil. Just the lesser of said evil.

        1. It’s not that evil. But find me the pure, virgin hooker, and I’ll go for that.

          1. Virgins suck in bed. I’ll take a reasonably skilled and heavily protected hooker please.

            1. Give a man a fish, and he will eat for a day.

              Teach a man to fish, and he will eat for the rest of his life.

              The same goes for hookers.

              1. Teach them a little econ and business and they will start a brothel or strip club.

              2. Teach them a little econ and business and they will start a brothel or strip club.

  54. Here’s the problem with voting for Team Red. They aren’t pro-free market and the policies they support, while not as destructive as those offered by the donkeys are still really bad, so when things get worse with the Republicans in office (which they will) what will take the blame? The free market, tax cuts, and deregulation of course. Let the statists whose rhetoric is more consistent with their actions screw us, then the blame can fall where it belongs, on interventionism in general. The other problem is that if we keep supporting moral majority dickwads because they are marginally less evil on fiscal policy, we are complicit in their social conservative douche-baggery.

    1. Either way, people will still blame the free-market. The Dems are touting the health care bill as one the strengthens the free market. Resulting problems from the bill will be blamed on market failures.

      If team red wins takes control of congress next month, they will have trouble pushing though their social conservative agenda, unless Obama goes along with it. And, though I agree neither party is really free-market, if they are at loggerheads with each other over the next two years and neither party gets its wants and therefore leaves the economy alone, what’s left of our free market system might actually allow for some semblance of a recovery.

      I don’t want either party to have total control, and this is at this point the best way to get it.

      1. I agree, but Obama still has command of a shit load of regulators. If he somehow loses in 2012 and the red team still controls congress, will you vote for dems or stay home in 2014? 8 years of Clinton with 6 years of republicans turned out OK, but Clinton wasn’t batshit insane, unlike Barry O.

        1. It will depend. If by some miracle, the Republican who wins in 2012 actually shows an interest in free-markets and takes steps in his first two years, only to be blocked by a democratic congress, AND, is minimal about social crap, then I might vote red in 2014. But, that’s very unlikely.

          1. Ron Paul, anyone?

            1. Like I said, very unlikely.

    2. How do you know people won’t blame sunspots?

    3. That’s actually a really good point. At least when the dems fuck everything up people won’t blame the market, like what happened with bush and his MASSIVE DEREGULATION he never did.

    4. That’s actually a really good point. At least when the dems fuck everything up people won’t blame the market, like what happened with bush and his MASSIVE DEREGULATION he never did.

      1. People either say Obama has inherited this situation, or he hasn’t gone far enough with his massive spending/regulation policies. Either way, the market is still the cuplrit.

      2. Gary Davis and his so-called “deregulation” of the California electricity market (perestroika would have been a better word for it) would be a good example.

        Look at how many hacks tried to blame that on the market.

  55. Let the statists whose rhetoric is more consistent with their actions screw us, then the blame can fall where it belongs, on interventionism in general.

    I’m not really into being screwed so a couple of hundred politicians can look bad. I want the best possible life I can get. And at this point, gridlock looks like the best approach to minimize the assholery coming out of DC.

  56. I voted for a retired schoolteacher over that jackass Harry Reid today. She could have been a deaf blind midget Scientologist hooker and still make more sense than Reid. See, she’s not that crazy.

  57. Clearly many Gillespie like libertarians posting here suffer the effects of paranoia from too many drugs in the sixties, and now that their brains are fried they figure they can handle any temperature.

    1. Nah, before my time. For me, it was the 70s and 80s. People ask me if I remember anything from the 70s and 80s, and I say, I certainly can’t remember anything since then.

      1. and now that their brains are fried they figure they can handle any TEMPERATURE.

  58. I also do not understand why so many small government types seem constitutionally incapable of finding an appropriate time to STFU.

    Actually, I can – because politicians, whether mouthing their support for big or small government, tend to be assholes – because they reflect the opinions of the people who vote them into power.

  59. I also do not understand why so many small government types seem constitutionally incapable of finding an appropriate time to STFU.

    Actually, I can – because politicians, whether mouthing their support for big or small government, tend to be assholes – because they reflect the opinions of the people who vote them into power.

  60. Why is it that I’m having more and more eye-rolling moments like this when reading Reason, lately?

    As long as government-funded institutions exist, there will be arguments about whose views they should reflect. When an issue comes up which doesn’t have a convenient middle ground, one side or the other has to win — that’s the nature of a government-funded insitution, and a big reason for libertarians to oppose them. But if one outcome has to happen, and there would be no libertarian objections to either one if the institution were private, then I don’t see any reason why the choice shouldn’t reflect what the public in general wants.

    For example, in the case of the two “gays and schools” issues, there is no libertarian objection to a private school hiring or not hiring gay teachers, or teaching that homosexuality is or is not acceptable. In the case of a public school, someone is going to be stepped on. It’s wrong for the government to discriminate against a gay teacher — but it’s also wrong to force parents to have their children taught by someone they think is providing an immoral example. Until we can make the dilemma go away by privatizing the schools, the best that can be done is to let decisions like this reflect public opinion (directly or via politicians).

    There is nothing libertarian per se about approving or disapproving of homosexuality, or drug use — or going to church, or duck hunting, or whatever. Having the government stopping you from engaging in those things is where libertarianism comes in. Otherwise it’s just a matter of which side one sympathizes with.

    And that’s what Nick is doing here and previously: taking personal sympathies and tastes and (intentionally or not, maybe he doesn’t realize he’s doing it) implying there’s something libertarian about them. I recall other editors doing it as well. And I’m no less freedom-loving for not wanting to take drugs, or having no inclination to attend Burning Man, or finding Allen Ginsberg loathsome. It’s basically an implicit version of what Ayn Rand did explicitly in “The Romantic Manifesto” — trying to reverse-engineer a rational argument for her personal tastes in order to imbue them with an ideological aura.

      1. Well, I totally agree, but it does seem that a lot of libertarians are also individualists.

        A lot of us here are.

        So stuff like this plays to the crowd.

    1. it’s also wrong to force parents to have their children taught by someone they think is providing an immoral example.

      This is a silly argument. Nobody forces a parent to place their child anywhere. They can send thhe child to a private school or homeschool them. Parents are allowed to have their kooky views but cannot force them on others. Telling an adult teacher she can’t have consensual sex with males is not liberterian in the least.

      I do agree that implicit approval or support of homosexuality is not libertarian, but actively working against it is not either. However, actively working against homosexuals is what the author is against.

      let decisions like this reflect public opinion (…via politicians)

      Oh, I see. I didn’t realize public opinion was in favor of Obamacare.

      1. Funny how parents care more about who their children’s teachers are sleeping with than actually supervising their children’s education.

      2. Nobody forces a parent to place their child anywhere. They can send thhe child to a private school or homeschool them. Parents are allowed to have their kooky views but cannot force them on others.

        They may not be able to afford the time or money for those options — and no one is forcing the teacher to work there, either. And I’m sure they find the opposite viewpoint “kooky.”

        Telling an adult teacher she can’t have consensual sex with males is not liberterian in the least.

        The statement wasn’t about what she could or could not do. That would be something akin to the anti-sodomy laws in Georgia. This was about her not doing it being a condition of employment — a condition which, in a free market, a private employer would be able to set. The public schools do not operate on the free market, hence the need to get rid of them, but until then the closest thing to “customers” are the voters/taxpayers.

        “let decisions like this reflect public opinion (…via politicians)”

        Oh, I see. I didn’t realize public opinion was in favor of Obamacare.

        I mean that they can pressure the schoolboard, or elect politicians who have expressed views that they agree with on the subject.

        Abstractly put: a government-funded entity exists. It must decide to do X or not-X, either of which a privately-funded entity would be within its rights to do. Some people want X, others want not-X. Since this is tax money we’re talking about, either way *some* people are having their money confiscated to bring about a situation they don’t like. Until the entity gets privatized, what principle consistent with libertarianism do you propose that sucks less than “go with majority opinion so that the fewest people get stepped on”?

        1. The election of politicians is precisely how we got Obamacare. Election of politicians to impose restrictions on others is not liberterian, and is exactly what the author is talking about. If there were two politicians – one who states that single women who aren’t virgins shouldn’t teach at public schools, and one who states “It’s nobody’s business but hers,” please tell me, who is the more libertarian? That is the gist of this article, which you seem to have largely missed.

          They may not be able to afford the time or money for those options

          And this is my problem because…?

    2. There is nothing libertarian per se about approving or disapproving of homosexuality, or drug use — or going to church, or duck hunting, or whatever.

      Libertarian: The advocacy of individual inherent rights.

      You don’t need government to exist to define libertarianism, therefore your assertion that libertarinism is defined by the existence of government is wrong, and moot. Which, being the crux of your argument, makes your argument moot.

      *I’m rolling my eyes right now and sighing with disdain. I might even put my hands on hips and flip my hair.

      1. Libertarian: The advocacy of individual inherent rights.

        With that incredibly vague and broad definition, how do you exclude the left-libertarian dipshits who want to include a right to health care, a right to an education, a right to a job, a right to high speed internet, etc?

        Libertarianism is about non-initiation of force last I looked. There’s nothing unlibertarian about choosing not to associate with people for bigoted reasons, so long as you don’t coerce them.

        1. Line one the LP preamble. (although not the definitive definition)
          As Libertarians, we seek a world of liberty; a world in which all individuals are sovereign over their own lives and no one is forced to sacrifice his or her values for the benefit of others.

          Stanford Philosophy, first line.
          Libertarianism, in the strict sense, is the moral view that agents initially fully own themselves and have certain moral powers to acquire property rights in external things.

          Free online dictionary.
          1. One who advocates maximizing individual rights and minimizing the role of the state.

          M-W.
          Definition of LIBERTARIAN
          1
          : an advocate of the doctrine of free will
          2
          a : a person who upholds the principles of individual liberty especially of thought and action

          Now, it’s obviously more complicated than this, but the central theme is just as I stated it and government is not the means by which the term is defined.

          1. a world in which all individuals are sovereign over their own lives and no one is forced to sacrifice his or her values for the benefit of others.

            Such as, being forced to send one’s children to be instructed by a (subjectively) immoral person, so that said person can have the benefit of a job.

            1. Are there daises to pick out there in left field?

              1. Are there daises to pick out here in left field?

                Fixed that for ya’.

    3. You’re only half right. Issues like whether or not public schools should be able to discriminate against teachers or whether food stamp recipients should have to take drug tests don’t make sense from a libertarian perspective. But just as we shouldn’t choose the side of those we sympathize with, we shouldn’t side with “public opinion” either. Neither side should be taken because libertarians should be rejecting the legitimacy of public schools and food stamps in the first place.

      1. heller
        Even in libertopia there will be some government jobs. Should discrimination be allowed in staffing them? I’m guessing you will make your decision based on a general view of government discrimination based on x. Then, if you lose the argument on what government jobs there should be, why would you not apply that general view to proposed discrimination in those jobs?

        1. For most legitimate govt jobs, discrimination makes no sense. I don’t care if the dog catcher is a transsexual annorexic Nazi.

          But I see no reason to forbid discrimination as a matter of principle. In my own community, I would tend to vote against officials who practiced discrimination because I think it’s stupid.

  61. Rand Paul is a simpering twat who should be ignored on a cond=sistent basis by anyone with half-a-brain.

    And Marco Rubio, the apparent “Great Semi-White Hope” of the GOP in Florida, is just another tool of the machine who is under IRS investigation.

    How long, oh lord, how long.

      1. Alex’s last name. Obviously.

        Sounds live a kind of vicious rodent.

        1. OH SHIT RUN!!!

          IT”S A SNITKER!!

  62. The tea party has been hijacked by the neocons and religious right. The big govt. pushers of the past 1/4 century.

    1. Let me take this one step further

      “The tea party has been hijacked by is the neocons and religious right”

      Here in Missouri, the St. Louis Tea Party has thrown its support behind Roy Blunt, the ultimate “establishment” Republican. Yes, I know, they’re throwing their support behind the lesser of two evils (nobody wants Carnahan in congress) but don’t give me this “third party” shit.

      Once the Republicans regain control of congress and the WH, the Tea Party will fade rapidly.

  63. What David Emami said, above. But there is also the purely logical objection to the kind of thing Nick and Matt have posted frequently.

    Being opposed to legislation which would impose (by force, as all legislation does) the acceptance of gay marriage on the part of those who don’t wish (for whatever reason) to accept it does not equal hatred of gays.* And that’s the case even if 100% of people you know who oppose the legalization of gay marriage also hate gays. It’s quite possible to oppose gay marriage from a Hayekian perspective without “hating on the gays.” So this is an attempt by Nick to win an argument by appealing to emotion, not logic.

    *I firmly believe that any actual legislation which emerges to “legalize gay marriage” will not be a case of providing more liberty only – it will also restrict the liberties of others. (C’mon guys! This is America after all! It’s what we do!) It will not be a simple Pareto-improvement, as many naive libertarians seem to think – just as the Civil Rights legislation of 1964 provided liberties for some but restricted the liberties of others. That’s the way it works in the real-world America in which we live. Therefore, I am at best ambivalent about most proposals to “legalize gay marriage.” And I in no way hate gays. In fact, if anything, I probably have an irrational bias in favor of them based on personal experience and their seemingly disproportionately positive contributions to the culture.

    1. OK, what are the negative side effects of legalizing gay marriage?

      1. Or, how would legalizing gay marriage “restrict the liberties of others” ?

      2. Re: heller,

        OK, what are the negative side effects of legalizing gay marriage?

        It would become yet another entitlement, like a job or a house. It would place churches at risk of lawsuits from people who may not even care about marriage, gay or not – like tort lawyers.

        THAT’s the risk. Satisfied?

  64. To Mr. Whipple

    The South FL Tea Party has started playing the race card, claiming that Rubio’s opponent (Crist) is courting Anti-Latino votes.

    http://www.southfloridateaparty.net/content/wake-marco

    1. Why not play the race card? As if it’s not being used against them?

      As they say, sauce for the goose…

  65. Personal morality does not equal a legal program. That used to be something more Libertarians, before they got caught up in their own kulturkampf, understood.

    The article’s mostly a bunch of attacks on people’s personal moral beliefs, as opposed to anything they’ve said they’d put into government. Moreover, even some of the more questionable ones are merely a result of the state being too large and requiring moral judgment that shouldn’t need to be made in the first place.

    Meanwhile, you’ve got sky-high deficits, unending foreign wars supported by both parties, a health care system designed to force everything you do into a matter of national security or solvency, and rampant socialism in general.

  66. Security is control. Control is security. Unless you, as an individual, are somehow greater than the state, then this maxim always applies to you and your “lifestyle”.

    1. You’ve gotta be joking. People who believe as you do never come and say it like that. They are far more nuanced, or they just deny it.

  67. Rand Paul, biggest political travesty in America? Right on the money, Nick. Whenever I see the likes of Rick Santorum, a true comunitarian, that is, socialist, among tea parties I shiver to the bone. Many people are being fooled by those faux small-Government advocates. Remember what Sarah Palin said when defending Bush bailout: “Government creates job”. As far as I know, she hasn’t retracted yet. Well, she helped defeat a Republican in Delaware who did vote against the bailout calling him RINO. How about LINOs like Palin and Santorum? The Democrats defeat in the mid-term elections is great news, but libertarians should always call a spade a spade.

    1. And with your denounciation of Rand Paul as the biggest travesty in US politics, we now know that you are really just a concern troll taking the form of a libertarian. Thank you for letting us know and also, fuck you.

    2. How about LINOs like Palin and Santorum?

      Wat.

  68. Tulpa’s argument throughout seems to be that where the Dems advocate civil liberties they have been ineffective and where the GOP advocates undermining them they have been ineffective. I actually think there is something to that, but I don’t see why the GOP’s incompetence at achieving their coercive goals is some reason to support them….As could be seen in the Schiavo case it’s not so much from lack of their trying…

    1. According to all of these “libertarians” republicans would never actually endorse any legislation that would ever negatively affect our civil liberties. Even if they did, it would be impossible for any legislation of the kind to pass, so we are all safe. Well then, that makes me feel so much better.

      Newcular Titties ’12!! For Freedom!

      1. You do realize there’s a nonzero probability that all the oxygen molecules in the room you’re in now will coalesce into one corner of the room and leave you to suffocate in a cloud of nearly pure nitrogen?

        1. Christ, you republicans are just as bad as democrats. You want me to believe that voting republican will be good for fiscal responsibility, and will not adversely affect liberty.

          Just another group of hope and change hucksters.

    2. As usual you miss the point.

      Obama could have single-handedly closed the Guantanamo prison and ended the Wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. Dems could have refused to grant telecom immunity from warrantless wiretapping lawsuits by a mere majority in one house of Congress, which they’ve possessed in both houses for the past four years.

      They could have repealed Patriot with 60 votes in the Senate, which they had for nearly a year.

      The fact that they haven’t done any of these things shows they don’t give a shit about civil liberties, regardless of what they say.

      Now, turning to the Republican “threat” against civil liberties. Outlawing abortion would require passing a constitutional amendment. 2/3 of both houses of Congress and 3/4 of the states would have to approve. It’s not a mere matter of having the will to do it.

      Bringing back sodomy laws would require the same, thanks to Lawrence v Texas.

    3. where the Dems advocate civil liberties they have been ineffective and where the GOP advocates undermining them they have been ineffective

      But there’s more to that–where the Dems abrogate civil liberties they are highly effective. See smoking bans, PC as law, AGW nonsense as law, and so many others–all instances where the Dems limit our freedoms–sometimes even those freedoms they say Republicans are working against–while acting as if they are fighting for them.

      Right-wing anti-porn activism gets ridiculed as religious overreach–left wing anti-porn activism goes largely unnoticed, but, when it is noticed is ‘protecting women’ or ‘helping children’.

  69. My god is the aqua buddha, so say we all.

  70. 512 comments!

    In your face, bitches!

  71. The book Paul is referring to is, of course, Heather Has Two Mommies, which dates from 1989! Come on, already, you’re living in the past, man! And it wasn’t the federal government that forced the book on anybody, it was a bunch of local school boards (most famously in New York City).

    What Paul was arguing is that he doesn’t want someone in Washington deciding on education, giving an example that came from the top of his head. I don’t understand what’s the problem.

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