Contemplations On Politics

It looks like Kim du Toit’s been adding gunpowder to his Wheaties today.  I’ve been watching the sturm und drang over the libertarian question on his site as well as that of Mrs. du Toit.  I think the primary problem is that even most libertarians don’t know what it is.  There are a bunch of different subgroups who all claim that title for themselves.  To make things more fun, you also have the Libertarian Party to deal with.  I think Kim’s characterization of libertarianism as simply “anarcho-capitalism” is off the mark, but then they’re the ones that seem to get all the attention. 

Over the years I’ve played with a variety of forms of libertarianism.  There are some things that are appealing about anarcho-capitalism, but I just don’t see how it can be made to work.  Heck, the market can’t even restrain those damn vermin telemarketers.  That was one of the things that convinced me that a completely unregulated market was going too far.  But at the same time, I would like to see a lot of other regulations go away.  Government is a cure that is often worse than the disease, given the law of unintended consequences.  We must be careful of how we apply it and avoid using it willy-nilly for petty little things.

I think the final straw for me, though, was 9/11.  I’ve always been a supporter of a strong national defense, although I’ve been somewhat wary of some of the decisions that have been made in that arena (9mm pistols, V-22 Osprey, etc).  I’m in favor of any action that will make the United States safer at home, but I don’t ever want to see us trying to gain an empire.  All I want is to be left alone to live my life in peace.

So, I now find myself without a political home.  I find almost everything the Democrats stand for repugnant to my beliefs.  The Republican party has potential, but they tend to shoot themselves in the foot trying to out-socialist the Democrats (and don’t get me started on their religious fundamentalist fringe).  The Libertarian party lost me with their stand on the war.  The Greens are a bunch of socialist nutbags (green on the outside, red on the inside). 

In many ways, I think I’m a constitutionalist.  I’d like to see us uphold the Constitution as the Law Of The Land.  I don’t want to get too deep into this, but I’ve often wished we could bring back a few of the founders to examine our current federal government.  I’m sure they wouldn’t have much use for the DEA or BATF or any of the other alphabet soup agencies that plague our country (although I suspect that they would take one look at our government and run screaming from the room).  Having said that, though, I’m not interested in the Constitution Party either.  They’re just as bad as the others in using the government to regulate every aspect of the lives of other people.

Maybe I need to start a “Leave Me The Hell Alone” party.

Update:  I’ll probably take Kim up on his quest to get everyone to buy just one more gun this year, though, even if he doesn’t like libertarians. smile  But then, I’ve always had a soft spot for all those sad little guns I see at the gun show with no one to take them home.  It’s such a shame that so many of them don’t have good homes with owners who will take care of them.


  1. Michelle says:

    I have always been a Libertarian: though I don’t always agree with them. There are many who don’t think we should go to war against Iraq or that we shouldn’t have fought in Afghanistan. Sometimes I feel like being Republican till I think about the Patriot Act and John Ashcroft. I think the Republicans are right about many things and so are Libertarians. As corny as it sounds being a Libertarian…I do wonder if MCCarthyism will come back and if Libertarians will be seen as un-American because we want things to be as our Fore-Fathers believed. Now I think the left are in for some questioning of how American they are…given the amount of Bush and Iraq bashing they are doing. Check out this site.

  2. Michelle,

    I read that article you linked to.  I think Ms. Hynde has gone off the deep end and is in serious need of professional help.  It’s one thing to be against the war and quite another to hope that the United States gets bombed.  Her statements border on treason.

  3. Fuz says:

    I understand why many people dislike the LP, who would otherwise call themselves Libertarians. 

    I’m not against the coming war. I just want it to be declared, not merely “resolved”;  I see a crucial difference where others see a trifling distinction.  Then I want the US to win it, conclusively and honorably. 

    I have problems with other aspects of the LP platform, that arise from Vietnam War opponents firmly entrenched in the platform committee rather than an inherent fault of libertarian philosopy (the platform’s stance on military desertion is intolerable, for example).  Their approach to the Al-Q attacks is not playing well, and most libertarians know it—-it dominates internal discussions that are at all aware of the outside world and the LP’s election prospects.  Add a touch of anarcho- to the mix (which I am decided not). 

    So Aubrey, I keep coming back to the LP because it best reflects my philosophy, and I think so should you. 

    I am better than most other libertarians at accepting the big tent that is necessary to keep a party together. 

    So I am left more often than I leave, so to speak.  Necessarily that means I am often left holding my nose or holding my tongue.  I know for a fact that I’d feel that way in any other party, only more often and more painfully. 

    Keep in sight the ramifications of a Leave Me Alone Coalition.  People who want principally to be left alone will not work well together.  The LP is pulling it off better than I would have thought, but still not well enough to gain the mass needed for election victories.  That they “can’t win” is not enough reason for me to abandon them.

  4. I guess part of my problem is that I’m not really a “joiner”.  There are few groups I’ve ever really felt at home in.  So, I will probably just stay out of any organized party and try to use my vote to do the most good (or in some cases, the least harm).  Depending on their individual views on the issues, I may still vote Libertarian.

    I was just kidding about the “Leave Me The Hell Alone” party.  It’s kind of equivalent to “organized anarchists”.  smile

  5. Fuz says:

    Y’all might have been joking about the “leave me the hell alone party” but other people aren’t. 

    Including one Grover Norquist.

    He calls himself conservative, hangs out with neocons, but lays very usable libertarian groundwork. 

    The self-contradiction of a leave-us-alone coalition plagues the LP.  If only it vexed the GOP as badly.