Libertarianism is an ideology that holds individual freedom as its highest virtue, and asserts, basically, that a person ought to be free to live their life however they please so long as it doesn't harm others. Paradoxically, Libertarianism is at once the core of the American mythos, and a fringe-movement in her politics. Libertarian ideas are enshrined in the nation's constitution, the writings of its founding fathers, the fiction of Mark Twain, and the classic Westerns of Hollywood and some of the iconic characters of today – and yet, while the popularity of these ideas remains strong, in many ways the country grows ever more authoritarian by the year.
I wrote this list a month ago and ended up not submitting it, as the site is so apolitical (and that's a nice thing), but in light of the revelations about the current administration's invasive surveillance, targeting of political enemies and so on, I've reconsidered. This is not intended as a treatise on the merits and flaws of libertarianism, for which this isn't the place, and I am unqualified; but simply, here are ten characters (and groupings of characters) from film and TV which, for better or worse, exhibit libertarian traits and extol libertarian ideals.