Washington Post columnist Michael Gerson argues that libertarians are objectively pro-government because they want to legalize marijuana and gambling, which as taxable industries provide revenue to Leviathan:
Two of the larger social trends of our time—the growth of payday gambling and the legalization of marijuana—have two things in common: They are justified as the expansion of personal liberty, and they serve the interests of an expanding government….
Libertarians are now, paradoxically, providing ideological cover for irresponsible government. State officials just want the money, however it is blessed, without requesting it through the normal democratic process. Rather than building social competence and capital, politicians increasingly benefit when citizens are addicted, exploited, impoverished and stoned.
By Gerson's logic, a true libertarian would want to criminalize as much commercial activity as possible, the better to starve the beast. The less there is to tax, the smaller government will be, so when all peaceful transactions are banned, we will be living in a libertarian paradise.
Speaking of which, Gerson declares that "libertarian utopias are always childless," an old canard that assumes anyone who cares about children will want adults' choices limited to those appropriate for a 10-year-old. If you reject that prohibitionist agenda, if you believe that adults should be free to indulge in adult pleasures despite the risk that they might overindulge, you obviously hate children, and probably puppies too.
Gerson's alternative to the libertarianism that he faults for expanding the size of government is an authoritarianism that depends on government to instill proper moral values in the younger generation. He regrets that "parents no longer expect much help from government in reinforcing the cultural and moral norms necessary to the raising of responsible, successful children." The vagueness of Gerson's rhetoric conceals what that mission means in practice: kidnapping people at gunpoint and locking them in cages for providing goods and services that offend Michael Gerson.