Television

The 5 Most Anti-Libertarian TV Shows Ever!

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A little while ago, we tallied up "The 5 Best Libertarian TV Shows." South Park, Penn & Teller: Bullshit, The Wire, The Prisoner, House of Cards: They're all there, along with your abuse in the comments for leaving out Firefly, Yes, Minister, King of the Hill, and all your other favorites.

Now it's time to list the five TV shows that are the absolute worst from a libertarian perspective.

5. The Newsroom (2012-2014).  To be fair, just about everyone hates this sanctimonious drama created by Aaron Sorkin, who also has the rosy-eyed White House valentine The West Wing in his oeuvre. Its third and final season premieres on HBO in November. 

The Newsroom follows the on-air tantrums of Will McAvoy, a preening, self-righteous anchorman who can't open his mouth without inveighing against capitalism, gun rights, or political speech with which he doesn't agree. As played by Jeff Daniels, McAvoy is a lot like Ron Burgundy, but unintentionally funny.

4. 24 (2001-2010; 2014).  Debuting only a couple of months after the 9/11 attacks in 2001, 24 exists as nothing less than agitprop for the national security state and the righteous evisceration of civil liberties.

Super-agent Jack Bauer is constantly thwarting presidential assassinations, dirty bomb detonations, and drug cartel monsters through a mix of state-sanctioned torture, black-bag jobs, and good old-fashioned abrogation of the Constitution.

3. Captain Planet  and The Planeteers (1990-1992; 1993-1996). This show, along with an equally dreadful sequel program, suckled millennials on the teat of dramatically defective environmentalism in the early 1990s. After an evil businessman named Hoggish Greedly—get it?—starts drilling into the Earth for ill-gotten plunder, the spirit of the planet, Gaia, sends five rings to kids located all around the globe that allow them to conjure up the super-powered Captain Planet.

Remember, kids: capitalism is evil and destructive to the earth, unless you're creating preachy cartoons for Ted Turner and TBS.

2. NFL Football (1955-present). The National Football League isn't just the most remunerative professional sports league on the planet, it's the most morally bankrupt.

Forget about ongoing controversies over the league's domestic violence policies and the Washington Redskins' name. The NFL is the ultimate poster child for corporate welfare, state-sanctioned cartelization, and government-granted privilege. Sure, the games themselves are must-see TV but the political economy of the league—which is organized as a nonprofit due to a special act of Congress—stinks worse than the 1976 Tampa Bay Buccaneers ever did.

1. Star Trek (1966-1969). The original Star Trek takes place in a future where humanity has transcended all forms of warfare and cash transactions. The Starship Enterprise's adventures throughout the galaxy are supposedly by the Federation's "prime directive," which forbids humans from intervening in the domestic affairs of the planets they visit.

And yet when he's not engaging in zero-gravity sex with an endless procession of comely space aliens, Captain James T. Kirk is mucking around with every civilization from here to the Romulan Neutral Zone like LBJ on Viagra.

And let's face it: The sequel series are just as rotten from a libertarian perspective.

Well, what do you think of our picks? What did we get right and what we did we get wrong?

Set your phasers to kill and let us know in the comments.

Written and narrated by Nick Gillespie. Shot and edited by Meredith Bragg. About 4 minutes.

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Related: "The 5 Best Libertarian TV Shows Ever"