Dear Libertarians: It’s Time You Face Facts – Your Political Beliefs Make Absolutely No Sense

ku-mediumI have a rule I try to follow the best I can – I don’t debate Libertarians.  It’s usually a mind-numbing process of debating people who seem to have such a small vision of the world that I often question whether or not they understand how societies work at all.

In their world, regulations are the enemy.  “Freedom” and “Liberty” – that’s all that matters.  They’re quick to denounce the need for big government in certain areas of our lives and champion the “power of the free market.”

Well, that is to say most of them do this.  See, that’s one of the things that drives me nuts about Libertarians, even they can’t agree on what is or isn’t a “true Libertarian.”  Which you would think would instantly prove some of the major flaws in their ideology, but it doesn’t.

Libertarians are a unique bunch because they’re the only group of people I’ve met on both the far-left side of the political spectrum and the far-right.  Again, another example that proves their ideology is extremely flawed, but it doesn’t.  “Libertarians” on completely opposite ends of the political spectrum, with drastically different opinions on what “being a Libertarian” means somehow believing that this ideological set of beliefs is the “only true answer” – except they completely differ on their own set of beliefs.

What I always laugh at about their system of beliefs is how corrupt they view government as being.  Corruption that’s caused by politicians who are heavily influenced by lobbyists, big businesses and the wealthy.

So what’s their solution?  Remove government regulations so these lobbyists, big businesses and wealthy people don’t even have to buy off politicians.  Nope, no need.  They’ll have a deregulated nation to do whatever they want, whenever they want with only the “power of consumerism” to keep them in check.

After all, without the EPA and FDA, I’m sure companies would keep to these same strict standards of waste disposal and safe food handling, right?

Are you kidding?  Look at what happened in West, Texas; West Virginia; the Gulf of Mexico.  And that’s with regulations.  You really believe big businesses would act ethically with how they dispose, or handle, harmful chemicals or toxins?  Right.  These companies would pollute our environment in whichever way was cheapest for them.

You think billions are being pumped into campaigns to end the minimum wage because these businesses care about paying their employees more?

Libertarians seem to act as if we live in a tribal society, which is where libertarianism might work.  In small, tribal communities.  There’s absolutely no way in a complex modern society you can sit back, have an almost non-existent government then truly believe that “consumer power” will be the saving grace for regulating the behavior of the rich and powerful.

Granted, I don’t always believe that more government is the answer.  But it’s local governments, the one’s Libertarians think should be in charge, that are regulating the private lives of Americans.  I live in Texas.  I can’t buy liquor on a Sunday, smoke in most bars or restaurants in major cities (not that I smoke), casinos aren’t allowed, some counties don’t sell alcohol at all, new strict abortion laws continue to get passed all the time, same-sex marriage is forbidden – these are all restrictions on the private lives of citizens by government within Texas, not the federal government.

And if you shrunk the federal government to nearly nothing, giving most of the power to the local governments, then you’d just have that money pumped into corrupting local politicians rather than federal.

All Libertarian ideology does is cut out the middleman for those who are most responsible for corrupting our government.  So instead of having to try to buy off politicians to get their way, there won’t be any need.  After all, why try to buy off politicians to fight regulations you wished didn’t exist when there was no regulation put in place to begin with?

Trust me, there’s not a movement to eliminate the EPA, FDA and other regulatory agencies because these businesses want to act more ethically.  They want these agencies abolished so they can get away with even more than they do now.

But the truth is, when you ask Libertarians a simple question, “Name a successful society that’s existed in human history, or even presently, that was built on Libertarian ideology” – they can’t answer.  And no, the United States wasn’t built on “freedom.”  We started this nation with slavery and expanded it with genocide.  If anything more regulations were needed to ensure basic freedoms were being given to certain demographics because without those regulations, “the free market” often discriminated against them.

In fact, looking around the world, the countries which most closely resemble their system of beliefs (small government, little or no taxes, few regulations) are impoverished countries like Somalia.  You don’t find successful societies built on their system of beliefs, you see disorganized chaos and poverty.

So while I meet many Libertarians who are wonderful people, and granted some of their ideas are decent, their overall system of beliefs is just so massively flawed I can’t take most of what they say seriously.  And it’s not because “I don’t want to hear the truth,” it’s because I don’t see a point in debating with people who tell me “the government is corrupt” and their solution is to give even more power to those who are responsible for corrupting our government in the first place.

It just makes absolutely no sense.

Allen Clifton

Allen Clifton is a native Texan who now lives in the Austin area. He has a degree in Political Science from Sam Houston State University. Allen is a co-founder of Forward Progressives and creator of the popular Right Off A Cliff column and Facebook page. Be sure to follow Allen on Twitter and Facebook, and subscribe to his channel on YouTube as well.

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  • Jason Tyrone

    I don’t see us libertarians as a far left and far right group I see us as more in the middle. Where we embrace the liberals social ideals and the conservatives economic ideals. I myself try my hardest to not talk or debate with liberals and conservatives due to the fact that libs automatically call us racist teabagger and conservatives call is hippy liberal nut jobs. All I do know for sure is we have tried both the far left and the far rights ideas of governance and have had a horrible experience so far… so why not come more into the middle and try something different something that is called a compromise? Like you said we believe in a small limited federal government and allow states to have the most power. That way a state that’s socially backwards like Texas can do what they want without tryn to force their views onto the rest of the country. And I bet most of the liberals would choose to move out of Texas and go to a more liberal friendly state where they are more comfortable and welcomed. The whole idea that a one size fits all government doesn’t work. The people of a city and state can effectively mold their government for them a lot easier and more precisely than everyone tryn to mold one big federal government into what all the city’s and states need… and if a state like Texas thinks it’s OK to deregulate fire safety standards and hella fires start to break out everywhere people will then either stay away from that state and move out or they will petition their local government for those regulations. And I assure u the response will be quicker than tryn to do it through a huge federal government. Here is a crazy asinine example (like u did with the fire regualtions) of local government vs federal government. Take Hawaii they have volcanos and every once and awhile one erupts and causes damage to property. The insurance lobbyist in Hawaii get them to make it mandatory for residents to purchase volcano insurance. It seems reasonable to most Hawaiian except for the ones who live no where close to a volcano and have no real threat to one damaging their property but it is what it is that’s the law in Hawaii if u don’t like it move. Now what if they lobbied the federal government for the same thing and because you leftist love the more power the fed is the better the fed has the right in your world to impose such mandatory things like insurance the lobbyist win and the federal government makes it mandatory for every property owner in the USA to get volcano insurance. The one size fits all way of government does not work the federal government should be extremely limited and the states have the most power cuz the state’s can be controlled a lot easier by its people vs trying to control a huge federal government. … idk why I’m even waisting by time it’s not like I’ll get any of you to understand this simple idea… let’s see I’ll boil it down to this the federal government will never be able to change the ways of Texas just like it won’t change the ways of California only the people within that state can do it.

    • Jim Bean

      I see someone ‘unliked’ your comment yet I don’t see anything in it to not like and they didn’t step up to say what it was.

      • Dissenter13a

        Happens to me all the time on the RW and LW moonbat sites. Gays, guns, and God! Hillary, Benghazi, IRS-gate! I’ve been banned by ClownHall, RedState, the Family Research Council, and other lunatic fringe sites like HuffPo and DKos.

        It is just that I try to avoid intellectually empty echo chambers.

    • John Clark

      You mean a race to the bottom with the several states competing for things like business development? That’s the country we already live in. States offer no regulation, no taxes, free loans, … to attract jobs, then they leave for even a better deal or hold the area hostage for even more.

      • strayaway

        It could have also meant that Vermont could have had the affordable Canadian style single payer plan it wanted. Too bad the (un)ACA thugs wouldn’t allow Vermont to have a truly affordable single payer plan. If it worked there, more states might have adopted it, But, oh no, the (un)ACA thugs had to keep the money rolling to the 1%.

      • John Clark

        Vermont has a single payer implementation of the PP&ACA. What is your point?

      • strayaway

        My point is “affordable” as in “affordable Canadian style single payer plan”. You missed that word. I even wrote “truly affordable ” to stress “affordable”. The (un)ACA bureaucrats ruled that Vermont could have its own plan as long as it included the (un)ACA at its core. The problem with that is that trial lawyers, mega-pharm profits, and armies of bureaucrats still at the health care feed trough, Vermont’s plan will never be able to match the cost efficiencies of the Canadian provincial plans. I listened to the Chicago Canadian Council on NPR once say that the biggest cost saving in Canadian plans was to keep lawyers out. if doctors can only be sued for $10,000, they they don’t even buy liability insurance and pass that cost on to patients or taxpayers. Ditto the hospitals, and every other medical providers. The (un)ACA keeps all these useless profiteers at the health care feed trough though to prevent true affordability.

        My other point was that i was addressing your point that allowing states to decide things as guaranteed by the 10th Amendment is a race to the bottom. i was saying the opposite, that Vermont was an example of a state trying to achieve affordable health care. i see that as positive.

      • John Clark

        So you blame the lawyers? I’ll admit this country is a bit tort crazy, but many times, using our legal system is the only remedy for malpractice. Actually, the PP&ACA seeks to address the costs of over testing which is sometimes practiced to avoid suits. As for affordability, already we’re seeing overall costs going down. And like any major overhaul, changes need to be made.

      • strayaway

        I blame much of of the high costs on lawyers, the malpractice insurance costs that have past along, and the additional high costs of family health insurance. Over testing is another cost associated with litigious medicine. President Obama promised that health care costs would go down $1500 for the average family but since the (un)ACA passed, costs have gone up about that much. Of course, senior citizens and men now are covered for child birth and other things they weren’t covered for before.

      • Agaynst Roads

        The cities with the lowest graduation and literacy rates – DC, Baltimore, Chicago – are all in liberal Democrat ruled cities in Democratic states. So it seems the best way to “race” to the bottom of the lake is to tie yourself to the concrete blocks of government.

    • carolyna137

      I consider myself a “liberal Democrat”; however, I often disagree with other liberals, definitely disagree with conservatives on several levels, and have supported Libertarian and Green candidates in the past. I would say that makes me more pragmatic than anything else. People and political/economic/ethical beliefs are so much more complex than those labels, and why we focus on them rather than solutions is ridiculous, to say the least.

    • Pipercat

      This is nonsense because Libertarianism is neither right, left nor middle. Their underlying ideology for Liberty and Free markets is completely different from Liberalism and Conservatism.

      • Dissenter13a

        Libertarianism is a logical starting point in the debate that we as a society need to have. Too many rightards worship Adam Smith, but have never actually read his signature work, to say nothing of understanding it. A free market can only be at best approximated, owing to daunting barriers to entry.

      • Pipercat

        Smith was an 18th century man. Things have changed a bit since then. Smith and Bastiat are products of the post mercantilism era. I’m not so sure that Libertarianism is a good starting point. They have some good principles that must be recognized, don’t get me wrong; but, I think the starting point has to be completely neutral. I will say this much, free markets only work with a good set of rules and referees. Nowadays, we’re falling into more of a free-for-all market mindset.

      • Charles Vincent

        Times may have changed but the underlying mechanics that Smith laid out haven’t. Would we need to account for globalized markets? Yes but Mises has done some work on that facet of the world economy today.

      • Pipercat

        I’m of the mindset to throw everything out and start over completely. Kinda like our discussion about currency. Thinking beyond the vale, if you will. Everybody gets to contribute, but not to dominate. Dissenter suggested a biased starting point. I think the slate needs to be clean is all. Remember that old LP test called the smallest political quiz or something? If you do, think of dead center.

      • Charles Vincent

        This quiz?
        http://www DOT theadvocates DOT org/quiz/quiz.php

        What do you mean by this?;

        “Everybody gets to contribute, but not to dominate.”

        I was also toying around with creating a social group on Facebook where people could come and discuss Ideas like our conversation on currency and this topic but not sure about it being well received.

      • Pipercat

        Yeah, that one. Like 10 questions are really enough. I just liked the graph at the end.

        It’s a great idea because folks are tired of the bullshit. There are some real problems nowadays and everybody finger points.

        Basically, a think tank of sorts. Start with a concept and move from there. At this point, the concept isn’t important, just a starting point. No Conservative, Liberal, Libertarian, etc, ideological ideas. Just good old fashioned poop session like now. Folks float an idea and see if stays afloat. Distinct ground rules, but cussing is allowed. Don’t want a fallacy or bullshit fest either. Also, just have to make sure it doesn’t turn into a pissing match. Fuck, they can go to Yahoo! for that. Mull it over then go from there. I have a few folks who might like the idea to just end the inertia.

      • Charles Vincent

        Well cussing doesn’t bother me I spent to much time in the oilfield and construction industry lol. I do however hate e-peen/dick measuring contests they don’t solve the problem, want confirmation of that just look at congress. The Idea is simple people post/start a thread topic and people either join that thread or they don’t. I would relish the active discussion of currency models or how to fix our current cluster fuck of a government, and just the exposure to new ideas and the ability to learn new things I didn’t know. Definitely free of overt ideology so people can see things from a logical perspective and trolls and down syndrome monkeys would be the ban hammered. In the end I could care less who caused the problem i only care that the problem is fixed/solved.

      • Pipercat

        Hammered first, by all means!

      • Charles Vincent

        Well a little abject humiliation be fore the hammer slams down haha. Levity is always good for the soul.

      • Pipercat

        Well stew on it for awhile, then why not!

      • Charles Vincent

        Well I need 4 cohorts to start the venture. Was thinking on making the “think tank” a closed group so only invited people could join with approval of the people there already I like odd numbers as it means no ties unless someone abstains. Once the party of five has been established some basic rules for the forum could be established by vote then the fun begins perhaps a round robin style of topics on a weekly basis. each week a different person throws their idea on the page for discussion or each person posts a topic and people decide which topic suits their fancy more… just food for thought.

      • Pipercat

        Once you get the first group, I suppose just a basic howdy session. Then on to topics at hand. My monthly trip to Houston is next week, so the out-of-pocket rule will apply.

      • Charles Vincent

        oh I imagine the groups will work at peoples leisure when they can hop on and participate.
        are you saying your in and want to participate?

      • Pipercat

        Yes! See if you can get Matthew too. He’s still bouncing around these days.

      • Charles Vincent

        Matthew Reece? what about this dissenter fellow he has plenty of solid concepts and from what I have seen is highly intelligent.

      • Pipercat

        Yes and yes!!!

      • Charles Vincent

        Any other suggestions?

      • Charles Vincent

        Well I posted to both dissenter and Matthew and referred them here to our discussion on the group topic not sure if it will fly since my reputation on this site is less than stellar. so here are fingers crossed right.

      • Charles Vincent

        Toying with a few names for the group. The Deep End , Five brains one goal(not so good if there are more than 5 people), Status Quo Challenged, and Outside the Box. or maybe It’s larger on the outside of the box.

      • Pipercat

        Cognitive Consonance, Beyond the obvious.. cheese and crackers?

      • Charles Vincent

        Beyond the obvious is very good. also Matthew is posting here and wasn’t before maybe he is looking at our conversation as i had posed to him to do.

      • Charles Vincent

        What about the Great Melding Pot?

      • Pipercat

        Might think we’re stoners…

      • Charles Vincent

        I guess asking people top make the leap from the great melting pot era to the great melding pot is pretty subtle lol

      • Pipercat

        Really doesn’t matter, I suppose. The name is changeable. Shit, name it for today, 4th and 27!

      • Charles Vincent

        Are we stoners though lol?

      • Pipercat

        Not since my lumbago kicked in!!

      • Charles Vincent

        Three kids killed my inner stoner lol.

      • Charles Vincent

        OK looks like Matthew is interested but I can’t make the group until I have you friends on fb then I make the group and tell it you add you.

      • Pipercat

        Is this your name on FB?

      • Charles Vincent

        Yes its easy you know where I live and what I look like and my name already.

      • Pipercat

        Done! Formalities like, your majesty will be unnecessary!

      • Charles Vincent

        Bawhahahahaha I was going to call you your holiness….

      • Pipercat

        Cryptic bullshit can be pretty funny at times!!

      • Charles Vincent

        hello pipercat and I had thought of creating a FB group that is dedicated to “I was also toying around with creating a social group on Facebook where
        people could come and discuss Ideas like our conversation on currency etcereta” he thought you might be interested in something like that so if you’re interested let me know and so I can make the closed group and start it up. you can see below here sort of the idea I bounced off pipercat and if your interested or have others in mind that would like that sort of thing post them to either pipercat or myself. also if you have or know of a poster on this site Matthew Reece pipercat had mentioned he might be interested as well.

    • Nancy

      Jason – it seems like you, and most of the other libertarians I’ve talked to, look at politics in a very black and white / all-or-nothing way. Yes, obviously there are cases where it makes more sense to have regulations be local. There are also cases when having consistent regulations managed by a central authority is easier/better/more efficient (inter-state commerce, for example). But aside from that, the real issue I have with the libertarian philosophy is that it would only work as promised if (at least) two things are true: 1. there is transparency and communication: consumers have all information needed to make good decisions about the companies they use; and 2. consumers use that information to consistently make decisions that are best for both their short term AND long term needs. (Thus weeding out the “bad” businesses through attrition.) The first would be impossible without regulation. The second is just unrealistic – even given the best information available, people still make bad decisions. You cannot have a consumer-regulated economy if the consumers do not have both the information and the ability/desire to effectively choose the best businesses for their needs.

      • Dissenter13a

        Incisive and well-said, Nancy. Adam Smith’s economic theories presuppose perfect information, and only a well-regulated market can deliver anything close to that.

      • Charles Vincent

        Seeking perfection in an imperfect world is a fools errand.

        It seems to me that at least Adam Smith and Frederic Bastiat laid out the best principles to govern both society and economics while at the same time protecting individual liberty and preserving justice. Sure we can not have perfect information but they talked about how to mitigate errors in both the law and in the wealth of nations. I have read both and listen to both on audio book when I work as well as having both in my drop box in PDF. Did Smith talk about regulating the market? Yes, But he also seemed to caution people(governments) against over regulating it as well.

      • Agaynst Roads

        And the private sector provides information and transparency when consumers want it. Unlike government. If you want to know something true you go to underwriters laboratory or wired magazine, not a government agency.

    • surfjac

      How will local regulations on industry affect residents of the next municipality or county or state or nation?
      That’s part of the failure of limited federal government. What an industry is ALLOWED to do might affect a neighbor in adverse ways. Without federal guidelines and regulations, there would be a need for more judges to hear civil suits.

    • Agaynst Roads

      They can’t do much else given how ignorant they are as evidenced by the peanut gallery here.

  • John Clark

    Actually, their ideology has already been tried and failed. Look at where the last quarter of a century of neo liberal, laissez-faire capitalism has gotten us. Most of the world is still digging itself out from the failure of the libertarians. Of course they’ll deny it; maybe it would have all worked if we had all just gone back on the gold standard?

    • Betty Eyer

      No one who promotes the gold standard will discuss the problems that occurred that caused us to get rid of it in the first place, nor will they accept the fact that it was business that wanted it changed (and why).

      • Pipercat

        … or the minor detail of trying to get the entire planet to go along.

      • John Clark

        I’ve never understood it either. I guess the Federal Reserve is tyranny in their world view?

      • strayaway

        The Fed is owned by mega banks. Bank shares are owned disproportionately by the 1%. It is largely off limits to Congress and has not been fully audited. Although one of its two stated goals is to manage inflation, 96% of the spending power of the dollar has been destroyed during its 100 year control. The Fed electronically prints money (increases the money supply) as it sees fit. It distributes this money to owner banks which charge interest to lend it. Imagine having a monopoly on owning an electronic ‘printing press’ and being able to charge interest on something that doesn’t exist. Nice racket! No wonder the Fed has no interest in actually supporting sound money

        Nothing to see here folks. It’s just another elaborate scheme to buoy the 1% concocted by robber barons and approved of by Wilson but not libertarians.

      • Andy Kinnard

        I agree that the Fed is not working to the benefit of the People, but I am no more convinced that a Congressionally controlled Central Bank would be run any better.

        Libertarians and liberals agree on the basic problems with the Fed, but I’m still waiting a solution that appeals to both camps.

      • strayaway

        I don’t know that a Congressionally run central bank would be run any better considering federal forays into housing and medicine. It would, at least, be constitutional. If done well, it could do for federal government services what the Bank of North Dakota does for the residents of North Dakota. Until the federal government somewhat nationalized student loans, the Bank of North Dakota was providing interest free student loans. Farmers in North Dakota also get very low borrowing rates and the money and development are kept in North Dakota. So a government run central bank could be a good thing of the people running it were honest.

      • Betty Eyer

        Yes, it is (in their view). See strayaway’s answer for proof. News flash – banks are owned by bankers, ergo they are wrong and probably unconstitutional. We should get rid of them and just keep guns and gold in our bedrooms. Yeeeeehaw.

      • eccles11

        There was actually far more nuance and reasoning in strayaway’s post than you are giving credit for. Can you please point out the logical leap you attributed to her/him. Specificially “banks are owned by bankers ergo they are wrong” It doesn’t seem like anything he/she said sounded anything like that, or invoked reasoning resembling that at all.

      • Agaynst Roads

        She can’t. The Podesta and Soros hos are almost uniformly very dim, as they evidence with every syllable. That is why they were hired to be dupes, flaks, and minions.

      • Betty Eyer

        I have no interest in it. I have never heard of Podesta and I never heard of Soros until some right wing person started talking about him and I’m not a ‘ho.

      • Betty Eyer

        Banks are owned disproportionally by the 1%. That’s the leap. Banks are always owned by people who have money. It’s not the problem. The problem comes when those people get to buy the government and remove regulations that control them.

        Or…join a credit union.

      • Andy Kinnard

        He wrote that shares of the Fed (not just any old bank) are disproportionately owned by the 1%. While that would be unavoidable (or nearly so) in commercial banks, it simply shouldn’t be the case with a central bank. There is NO reason why every citizen should not hold stock in our own Central Bank.

      • Max Holperin

        One reason may be: if every person had a share of the Central government ‘stock’, then it is truly not a stock and is indeed a failed attempt at socialism. If the people want the power, they would have more power without the Federal Reserve because it allows for freer economics.

      • Andy Kinnard

        Only if by “socialism” you mean direct, democratic participation in our banking and monetary system. I see NO way that each citizen owning stock in a Central Bank equates to socialism.

      • Agaynst Roads

        Another example of the true war on women. Betty has been lobotomized by her state school.

      • Agaynst Roads

        Yes your never having understood things is obvious. Try reading a book perhaps. And Betty doesn’t even know she’s lapping up agitprop on a site funded by multimillionaire lobbyists.

      • Josh Fuchs

        Yes, it is wrong to force people to purchase your product, even if that product is money, just to live. But talking morality with liberals is impossible

      • Billy Heir

        It is not a “world view”, it is a basic observation of reality. The Federal Reserve was selected to be the creditor to the entire US economy. This selection was not made a by representative government. None of the political parties wanted it. It was created in secret meetings by private bankers. The Federal Reserve Act passed as a compromise between the political parties of the time, at the strong persuasion of the bank owners. The system is corrupt. It is not “tyranny” – try North Korea if you want to talk about tyranny. It is simply a fact that the Fed was not built on ideological principles, it was not based on the principles of the US Constitution or the Declaration of independence. Besides the facts that it is blatantly beneficial to a few rich bankers, and that it is a faulty inflationary system, the Fed, and the fractional reserve banking system that it has instituted are creating debts which are impossible to be repaid, and therefore creating a strangle-hold of debt-slavery over the American people; a constant debt that can never be repaid, in a currency that is constantly open to inflation and price control, according to the whims and preferences of the bankers. It is a deeply corrupt system that is not based on any principles. “the [fed] is tyranny” is your words… that is not a ‘world view’ nor is it accurate. There is a massive ignorance in political discussion that thrives when fool project idiotic, false comments, and even project false, stupid, self-made “world-views” into the minds or the people they are afraid of, rather than accepting the fact that they don’t understand the pros and cons of the other philosophy. This ignorant slander is ruining the spirit of co-operation in American political discussion. You have to show awareness of others – slandering others’ “worldview” based on your own ignorance is just destructive and pointless. Do you have any ideological principles in your world view? How are they expressed in politics and economics?

      • strayaway

        Spending too much. FDR confiscated gold and then devalued the dollar to pay debts. Finally, the expenses of the Johnson/Nixon undeclared Vietnam war put Nixon in a bind. Gold was draining out of the Country too fast so he ended the gold standard.

        I’m not sure why you brought up gold anyway. The gold standard is a Constitutional issue rather than a libertarian issue anyway. Pure libertarians are anarchists who aren’t into gold, laws, or order anyways.

        ” No State shall … make any Thing but gold and silver Coin a Tender in Payment of Debts;” -US Constitution.

        The opposite of libertarian is authoritarian. Those here who can’t stand libertarianism at least have their own authoritarian comfort zone.

      • Brian

        Well, gee, I guess it’s a good thing that 220 year old law documents are taken with a grain of salt.

      • John Clark

        Maybes we’s should go on the salt standard? We’ve got plenty of it and people wouldn’t use so much causing us to spend less on health care.

      • Agaynst Roads

        Hey, once you pick one state monopoly standard to force everyone into, why don’t you build a website to promote it, punkin. Rofl.

      • Brian

        Brilliant.

      • Josh Fuchs

        lol Liberal economics right here

      • Agaynst Roads

        More pro-regressive gibberish from the goose steppers who want old docs like the Bill of Rights tossed.

      • Brian

        The bill of rights needs to be rewritten like crazy. After hundreds of years of institutionalized racism, ethnocentrism, theocracy, and hundreds of thousands of homicides by modern firearms, maybe we should stop and think to ourselves that basing all law on something written 220 years ago by a large group of bickering sociopaths is not the best idea.
        Also, you’re full of it, regarding the gold standard. Or maybe you forgot that on the gold standard recessions lasted even longer. Andrew Jackson’s mess comes to mind. People still starved too. No one uses the gold standard anymore because it’s a terrible economic policy that does not work in a large country with a centralized government.

      • Josh Fuchs

        Andrew Jackson had to fight against central bankers. Read your history buddy

      • Betty Eyer

        This whole screed is an excellent example of the point of this article. I thought about debating this but it’s just a huge waste of my time. This guy is not going to grasp what I’m saying and anyone sane is already convinced.

        Dude, forbidding the states from printing money is not the same thing as preventing the fed from doing so. Except of course, to a libertarian.

      • strayaway

        Dudette, Who was talking about forbidding the state from printing money? The Constitutional quote mentioned only that gold and silver were the only legal payment of State debt. I partially answered your question. Pretending that printing without backing up the paper with something though ultimately has consequences as in the Weimar Republic and Uganda. Second, a national bank could be run by Congress as the Congress requires rather than by corporations. That is what Sanders, Alan Greyson, and Kucinich advocated. The latter two both got run out of office although Greyson is back in.

        I realize that Goldman Sachs was Obama’s #2 contributor in 2008 an Romney’s #1 contributor until he got his party’s nomination. Pre-selecting candidates for us guarantees ongoing corruption. But if democrats like Sanders, Greyson, and Kucinich oppose the Fed, why are you being a sock puppet for the 1%? What has this got to do with libertarianism anyway? Protecting the Fed is about protecting corporatism and libertarians don’t like economic fascism.

      • Agaynst Roads

        Your last paragraph seems to be meaningless gibberish.

      • Josh Fuchs

        You don’t even have a small percentage of the intelligence required to put up a meaningful argument, just like this article, is that what you mean? The blinding truth in the face of religion government worshippers is burning.

      • spending too much, lol.
        FDR built the middle class.

        republicans built more than 90% of the debt.

      • strayaway

        Your 90% figure cant be right because, at last count about 170 days ago, Obama had created $8.1T of the $18T debt. The balance of the debt is only 55% of the debt, not 90%.

      • Agaynst Roads

        Such a simpleton. Back when there was what you called a “gold standard” recessions never lasted more than a year.

    • eccles11

      i’m not a libertarian, but I can instantly see the ridiculousness of this comment. Where on earth have we had laissez faire capitalism? There are regulations, industrial relations laws, government price and wage fixing, zoning laws, pretty much everywhere. Can you name somewhere that had actually practiced laissez-faire capitalism?

      • John Clark

        Unless there is absolutely zero regulations, the last 25 years of unregulated capitalism doesn’t qualify as laissez faire? What do you think “free trade”, the WTO, our deregulation of banking,… is, exactly? And the years of the IMF/WB forcing nationalize utilities to privatize? The breaking of labor? What world do you live in not to understand current events?

      • eccles11

        How can it be laissez faire if it is regulated?

        The last 25 years appear to be a very strong resurgence of the ruling and political class using the state and regulation in a way that benefits them to the detriment of others.

        How can a free trade agreement between the US and Mexico reasonably be called free trade when Mexican farmers are competing with farmers in the US who are subsidised by their government? It’s a farce. Its a removal of only specific rules to the ruling class’ advantage. US Government subsidies destroyed much of the agricultural industry in Mexico.

        The breaking of labour, like the use of police to break strikes and brutalise workers, as we saw particularly during the Thatcher years in the UK, how can that be considered any kind of free market? When the owners of industry are able to use the power of the state to break free association of labour. Can that reasonably be considered the government “letting it be”?

        I don’t think you are wrong to characterise the last 25 years as “neo-liberal” but to equate neo-liberalism with libertarianism is the problem.

      • Agaynst Roads

        Let’s see we have government central planning of interest rates, government production and control of the money supply, and government defined standards of what is a preferential reserve asset for banks and – ta da – it’s government debt and debt from government sponsored enterprises, including government endorsed mortgage securities. That’s why we just had a giant economic collapse.

        This is aside from government owning most lands and minerals and the regulations the other poster listed. Those just keep economic activity shutdown, especially for lower income and working people who cannot hire lawyers and CPAs to help them comply with licensure and regulation. The big booms and busts though are the result of attempts at planning the economy.

        And you TPers are the brainless cheerleaders hired to shake pom poms for the ruling class.

      • Josh Fuchs

        The last 25 years has had more regulation in the economy than any time in the world, ever.

      • Robb Nunya

        Unless there’s a massive lessening in regulations, then no, it doesn’t even come close to laissez faire. Maybe you need to understand what the term means before you throw it around.

      • Robb Nunya

        Unless there’s a massive lessening in regulations, then no, it doesn’t even come close to laissez faire. Maybe you need to understand what the term means before you throw it around.

      • Betty Eyer

        Good point. If it ever existed, it ceased to exist the first time a medieval market fair decided to regulate weights and measures and make the whores set up outside the city walls.

    • Agaynst Roads

      What an uninformed person. Libertarians advocate competitive free currencies, not a state monopoly gold standard. I suspect this is one of the many topics, like public choice theory or libertarian class analysis, of which you have never heard . And yet here you are babbling, your policies failed all around you, your government creating 40% unemployment and decades long depressions. You are a laughable product of the state “school” monopoly.

      • Mark Choi

        Libertarians do no such thing.

    • Josh Fuchs

      The last century where government grew larger than any other time in history? Guess what, your government funded education lied to you about history!

    • Billy Heir

      Obviously, neither you nor the author understand libertarian ideology. It is not neo-liberal capitialism. Libertarianism is based on freedom and liberty. It is based on effective government that acts according to moral principles. It is based on the idea that the government should protect our bodies, our property, and our rights. Libertarians don’t encourage pollution – we encourage a simple, effective government that is actually able of stopping what harms us and punishing those who do it. We don’t need “regulation”, we need police who actually punish the corrupt people who poison our water. The world is digging itself out of what? Libertarianism? – that is just plain wrong. The world is digging itself out of failed governments that refuse to hold people accountable for their crimes, and failed banking systems that promote endless debt. No, we don’t want the gold standard, either – we want the freedom to put stock in the money we trust – not the banks the government forces us to trust. Rather than slandering your ill-conceived notion of “libertarianism”, why not try to learn what it actually is about? The author, too for that matter. It’s like you just want to be nay-sayers, even though you don’t know what you’re arguing against. It’s a good example of the pointless, going-nowhere, political dialogue that exists across party-lines.

      • angie497

        “We don’t need “regulation”, we need police who actually punish the corrupt people who poison our water.”

        Christ on a cracker – do you people ever actually read the nonsense you’re saying?

        Please, DO tell us all how you propose that we would punish people who poison our water if there’s no regulation against doing it in the first place….

      • Alde M

        Libertarians do not say NO regulations. Those are the anarchists. Libertarians say some important regulations. For example a minimum wage should not be a regulation. But regulation for punishing those who pollute the water should exist. Police, building roads etc. should be state owned. Schools, telecommunications etc should be privately owned. This is libertarianism. Educate yourself because you open your mouth.

      • angie497

        Well, then, let me be more blunt.

        Libertarians are childish little simpletons who can almost invariably be counted on to support doing away with all regulations except for the ones that they personally receive a benefit from, and who whine incessantly about being required to pay for their share of the very benefits they receive.

      • Alde M

        Well let me blunt.
        You are wrong because a libertarian does not believe in a benefit from the government, other than some benefits that the public sector cannot provide. For example schools should be under the public sector. Most should pay the schools(and have some non profits help around the poor) and everyone should have a choice to the curriculum. This will drive the competition up and will make the prices go down. Same applies to health system. The police/army cannot be under the public sector, because companies will have control of the countries. The roads cannot be under the the public sector because roads need a common body to function properly(Thus the government). So a libertarian wants a government that is at its smallest fraction possible so that the free market can function properly and the taxes to be at the lowest possible(i.e road fares to pay for the bridges the government will build, or small sales tax, but NO income tax since there is no need). Also by your own “rational” brain a no-rule of minimum wage is a benefit? Open up the dictionary for the word benefit. If someone pays me $100 to do some job and I know that job costs $500(based on the market value), I won’t do it for him and I’ll go find the person who pays me $500 to do it. A benefit for me will be to force the first person to pay me $500 for the job. Why should he? It’s his money. If he can find someone to do the job for $100 then good luck to him! If there is no law for minimum wage is this considered a benefit to him? That’s ridiculous.
        Do you have any solid argument to make or are you going to fart around with words that have no relevance to the discussion? Of course my guess is that you want to be brainless, work from 9-5, sit on your couch the rest of the day and the government should pay for your medical care(that WE are overpaying as you wont need the money WE are paying, even in 10 lives) because you eat junk food all day and do no excercise or the government should pay(WE actually) if you decide to sit on your butt for 2 years doing nothing to find work?

    • Jesse Fortner

      Do you have a clue about what libertarianism is? No, because if you did you’d know that the last quarter-century has been more and more state intervention, which is the exact opposite of libertarianism. What you said is like going to 1946 Germany and saying “See? This is where peaceful tolerance gets you!”

      • John Clark

        No, you won’t admit it… Read up on the Chicago School and then come back to talk.

      • Jesse Fortner

        The Chicago School isn’t the be-all and end-all of libertarianism.

      • John Clark

        Sorry, but you do sound like a Trot from the ’30’s talking “socialism in one country isn’t communism”… Hey, no experiment is perfect: there’s always a little bit of air even in the most perfect vacuum.

      • Jesse Fortner

        Your analogy would work if the government had become less powerful in the stated time frame.

        There are two scenarios here:
        1) you think that more government is the application of libertarian ideals (which makes you misinformed).

        2) You think the government has actually gotten smaller in the last quarter-century (which makes you grossly misinformed).

        Which is it?

      • Robb Nunya

        Screw the Chicago School. Read some Friedman, Block, Von Mises, and Rothbard, and don’t come back until you can put together a coherent argument. Right now you’re simply babbling drivel.

    • Robb Nunya

      If you think that the last quarter century has in any way resembled a libertarian economy, then you’re truly stoned out of your mind, Johhny boy.

    • Brian Duda

      The last 100 years of failure is due to empires, the opposite of libertarians. This country hasn’t been free since the 1700s and even then there were huge bank take overs which the government pushed for.

  • AngryBM

    We have tried the deregulation, how about the recession of 2008, so let’s do that again. CRAZY, That’s not good enough for you, How about saving and loans fiasco in 90s. I agree too much regulation is a burden on business and ultimately consumers would be hurt BUT EPA/FDA/USDA, do you really believe corporate profits will not be more important than consumer safety. I have worked for two of those agencies AND there is considerable waste there BUT I’ll put up with that instead of dying from a burger infested with the latest anthrax.

    • Dissenter13a

      Though it seems counter-intuitive, the most efficient market is a well-regulated one. The rational libertarian embraces reality, whereas the Ayn Rand ideologue is incapable of even recognizing it.

      • Charles Vincent

        Regulated yes but not crushed under over regulation or corrupted by protectionist policies that only serve the few at the top.

      • Agaynst Roads

        Another illiterate with flatulence

    • Agaynst Roads

      The recession of 2008 was caused by government control of money and banking. Johan Norberg has a book that can explain some of it for you.

    • Josh Fuchs

      What makes you think there was deregulation? There were literally 100,000s of pages of new regulations added. And its proof that government is incapable of regulating business.

      • AngryBM

        Glass-Steagall, look it up. It prevented commercial banks and investment banks from sharing risk but was repealed. The risky housing investment and derivatives using money from commercial banks didn’t necessary cause the recession BUT impacted it greatly. Its is the reason for the too big to fail as not only will it take down investment accounts but small businesses and individuals.

      • Josh Fuchs

        You’re confused. It was claimed by people that the Gramm–Leach–Bliley Act repealed parts of the Glass-Steagall, but that was just a spin word. It only increased the regulations by thousands and thousands of pages. Poor investments were subsidized by the government so the government could claim they were giving homes to the poor, while creating inflation in the housing market. The Liberals who wrote theGramm–Leach–Bliley Act claimed to be helping the poor at the time, only it didn’t work out that way in the end. When when you guys learn?

      • Josh Fuchs

        I know all about Glass Steagall, and the Gramm Leach Bliley act, which despite the sound bites amounted to more regulations not less, insuring and encouraging those banks to make higher risk investments and loans. And when I say more regulation, I mean thousands and thousands of pages of more regulation, there is no industry in the world as highly regulated as banking.

  • pauly

    I personally have yet to experience a far left libertarian. Most
    of the “libertarians” I’ve met have been from the far right. Now I put quotes around the word libertarian because I don’t see them as being truly libertarian, but rather misguided or really embarrassed moderate republicans.

    One of the major ideologies of libertarianism is consequencealisum
    (may have miss spelled that). But in essence, (paraphrasing here) consequencealisum states that your outcome in life is determined by YOUR actions…you consequences. The problem with THAT is, real consequencealisum base their actions that are moralistic values. You simply can’t say, stop feeding the poor and extra money can go into your pocket. It may actually work that way but that is not the moralistic choice to make. You are doing it wrong.

    And by that standard alone I have found that most people who call themselves libertarian really aren’t. They are just looking for a justification for their actions through mutual support and mutual
    misunderstanding of their supposed ideology.

    • Dissenter13a

      There are a lot of nominal libertarians who are actually fascists, hiding their true ideology behind the trappings of libertarianism. What it does come down to is what we want the social contract to be and why.

      • Charles Vincent

        What do you envision the social contract consisting of? And why do you envision it that way?

      • Dissenter13a

        Hobbes and Locke laid it out over a quarter-millenium ago. People enter into societies for protection, which is, as Hobbes explained in Leviathan, a rational transaction.

      • Charles Vincent

        Are you implying voluntary when you say rational transaction? I have only read a miniscule amount of Locke mostly references from other writers he is one of the next reads I will delve into, as is Hobbes.

      • Dissenter13a

        It is both voluntary and rational, as Hobbes does a nice job of pointing out.

      • Charles Vincent

        So are Hobbes and Locke on the same page or do they take divergent paths in their philosophies? You also commented on Ayn Rand does her Philosophy share any common ground with Hobbes or Locke?

      • Dissenter13a

        Where it matters, Locke builds on Hobbes, and to some extent John Calvin. John Locke was a virulent opponent of deism (who even wrote a book on it), but his signature work laid the foundation for a rationalist view of government and governance consistent with the deist heresy.

        I am no great fan of Rand. My view is that Smith’s theories predict an ideal size for government, which is dependent on societal needs. A functioning society needs roads, and the public sector delivers that need far more efficiently than the private sector. What I have a problem with is the concept I like to describe as “The Market Fairy”: the irrational belief that the market will always outperform the public sector, even where barriers to entry and economies of scale will precipitate oligopolies and even monopolies, with all the attendant market distortions.

      • Charles Vincent

        Milton Friedman called it the invisible hand and so did Adam Smith if I recall correctly. Also didn’t Madison or Hamilton postulate a best size for government along the lines of government size that you eluded to? And I also thought Adam smith though that there were things that could not be supported by private market as there wasn’t no profit , whereas the public sector could and that society would reap great profit from that? Is not the reasons monopolies exist because of government sanction, subsidies or protectionist legislation?

      • Dissenter13a

        You must have missed that class in Macro, Charles. Economies of scale create natural monopolies and oligopolies; it is the rational capitalist government’s job to regulate them so that the monopolist cannot enjoy the premium over market value the monopoly gives him.

        Alexander Hamilton devised a protectionist trade policy, which we followed with great success until Ronald Reagan almost single-handedly destroyed the country with his Chicago School heresies. See [google alexander hamilton 1793 thom hartmann; citations trigger auto-moderation] for the policy, in Hamilton’s own words.

        “Public goods” are those which the public sector provides most efficiently; roads and a court system are paradigmatic examples. The “public commons” ought to consist of what things government would be expected to do better than the private sector.

      • Charles Vincent

        I took micro econ first macro is next when i have the money to pay then i only need a few more to finish the degree.

        “Reagan almost single-handedly destroyed the country with his Chicago School heresies.”
        I presume you’re referring to supply side econ/trickle down here.

        “See [google alexander hamilton 1793 thom hartmann; citations trigger auto-moderation] for the policy, in Hamilton’s own words.”

        Jefferson followed this policy as well I believe, and he also abolished all internal taxes and tariffs, fought 2 wars, and paid the national debt down by ~1/3 if I recall correctly.

        “The “public commons””
        Define this for me.

      • Dissenter13a

        “A natural monopoly is a monopoly in an industry in which it is most efficient (involving the lowest long-run average cost) for production to be concentrated in a single firm.” This is from Wikipedia, which gives you the curves. “A natural monopoly has a very different cost structure. A natural monopoly has a high fixed cost for a product that does not depend on output, but its marginal cost of producing one more good is roughly constant, and small.”

        The public commons is defined as those assets and services either held or provided collectively. Public lands, roads, and police and fire protection are some of the more obvious examples. They also tend to be natural monopolies: government is best-suited to organizing and providing for the common defense.

        CV: “I presume you’re referring to supply side econ/trickle down here.”

        More, the policy of free trade. The problem with it lies in game theory: free trade will only work when everybody plays by the same rules, and no one in the rest of the world is playing. Hamilton’s 1793 policy on manufactures was enacted by Congress and blessed by George Washington, and it was our national policy until Ronald Reagan screwed us up with the crackpot theories of von Mises and Bastiat. Our country was raped because Reagan wasn’t the intellectual equal of the Framers.

        Internal state tariffs and international ones are two different kettles of fish, but Jefferson had a natural advantage that doesn’t exist today. I would cite my source, but it will trigger auto-moderation; google thomas jefferson fontainebleau madison and read TJ’s letter to James Madison, and you will see how he explains it.

      • Charles Vincent

        You can cite sources you just have to modify the link
        Like so;

        http://www DOT youtube DOT com/watch?v=n02qgqtpRKY#t=471

        “They also tend to be natural monopolies: government is best-suited to organizing and providing for the common defense.”

        When you say common defense are you referring to militias or standing militaries (something the founders did not seem to like?

        “crackpot theories of von Mises and Bastiat.”

        Are you referring to the whole of Austrian economics or certain ideas?

      • Charles Vincent

        Have you given consideration to joining the discussion group I mentioned? Also a lot of info in those suggestions you made will take a few for me to digest it all.

      • Charles Vincent

        Are these the writings of Hobbes and Locke that you had directed me to?

        http://www DOT amazon DOT com/Second-Treatise-Government-John-Locke/dp/162910065X/ref=sr_1_3?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1392838580&sr=1-3&keywords=john+locke

      • Charles Vincent

        Question for you is this guy in the video on the mark or is he full of Bull?

        https://www DOT youtube DOT com/watch?v=WWLQPz3-M7M

        Your appraisal would be appreciated.

      • Charles Vincent

        Dissenter13a
        Charles Vincent
        You must have missed that class in Macro, Charles. Economies of scale create natural monopolies and
        oligopolies; it is the rational capitalist government’s job to regulate them so that the monopolist cannot enjoy the premium over market value the monopoly gives him.
        Alexander Hamilton devised a protectionist trade policy, which we followed with great success until Ronald Reagan almost single-handedly
        destroyed the country with his Chicago School heresies. See http://www DOT thomhartmann DOT com/bl… for the policy, in Hamilton’s own words.

        “Public goods” are those which the public sector provides most efficiently; roads and a court system are paradigmatic examples. The “public commons” ought to consist of what things government would be
        expected to do better than the private sector.

    • strayaway

      Picture an x,y axis with x=personal liberties such as who to marry, abort, privacy, etc. and a y = economic freedom. Liberals have traditionally been more libertarian and less authoritarian than Republicans on the x axis. Republicans have been more libertarian and less authoritarian than Democrats on economic issues.

      On Jan. 3, the USDA moved forward with allowing Dow chemical to allow Dow Chemical to market 2,4D resistant seeds. The EPA doesn’t seem inclined to interfere. So our future probably holds 2,4D laced food to compliment our already Monsanto Round-Up treated GMO goodies which can be swished down with rBGH FDA approved milk. Meanwhile swat teams have been sent to Food Coops and Amish farms selling raw milk. Doesn’t this make you feel protected?

      • Betty Eyer

        Republicans are not libertarians. They like big government just fine as long as they get to run it.

      • strayaway

        For the most part I agree with you although the few “libertarians” in Congress constitute a minority of Republicans and wouldn’t be allowed to enjoy the light of day in the even bigger centralized government Democratic Party. Republicans like McCain might as well be Democrats. Enjoy the 2,4D enriched GMO corn flakes that your government protection agencies tells you eat.

      • pauly

        Strayaway, that would all make perfect sense if it were not for the fact that the Republicans have all but dismantled the FDA and the EPA to the point that they are unable to do their jobs properly. Remember those “personal Liberties” are protected under the constitution and not just somebody’s personal fancy as you seem to imply. It’s the economic freedoms (extremely sophomoric analogy) that erode away the personal freedoms and the end game for the economic freedom is to not have any government oversight at all. The end game of the government oversight is NOT to erode the economic freedom but rather to protect the people (remember the whole “we the people” thing?) and hold theeconomist (CEO’s) responsible for their actions. Remember the Republican party is the self-proclaimed party of responsibility…which avoids it at all cost. What the libertarian off-shoot of the republican party is to give that lack of responsibility a moral justification…think Atlas Shrugs and you see it clearly.

      • strayaway

        Nothing is ever Obama’s fault like stuffing those agencies with revolving door Monsanto executives. They did their job. They are pushing 2,4D food onto our tables. This isn’t something republicans didn’t do. This is what president Obama’s appointees have done. Claiming that economic freedoms are “extremely sophomoric analogies” makes you sound like the Minister of Commerce from E. Germany or Venezuela. Who said anything about ending ‘all’ economic oversight? My larger complaints are rules and regulation meant to crowd out small competition for the powers that be like many the USDA uses to squeeze out family farmers for corporate interests. Sometimes these are done in the name of safety of course. But when a small farm has to spend as much time going through extra hops or being forced to buy expensive technology to get through the hoops and consequently becomes unviable, my belief is that that is an intentional shakeout by big government for its corporate enforcers. What we are then left with ,more and more, is eating the cheap GMO chemical dishes served by corporations and government for their own mutual interest. Apparently, you prefer that to healthier but less prescribed choices.

    • eccles11

      Have a Google for the “Center for a stateless society” or “bleeding heart libertarians” for two similar but slightly different facets of left libertarianism.

      I’d link you directly, but there is always the risk of having the comment get stuck in moderation.

      • pauly

        Eccles11, be it libertarian from the left or right, unless
        they focus their consequencalisum in a moralistic (socialistic) faction they are NOT true libertarians. What I find odd is that there are as many libertarian off-shoots as there are Catholics off-shoots. But like Catholicism, they all HAVE to have (at least) one underlining factor to make them a sect of Christianity. For libertarians, it’s the “your own actions determine your outcome” montra. Now some take that in the direction as Ayn Rand to mean that you don’t help the less fortunate…to help the less fortunate. Or they could take it in a worse direction as the Tea Partiers and simply follow the “I have mine and screw the rest”. BOTH are wrong! The decisions that one follows to achieve the outcome of consequencalisum must be based upon a moral compass.

        That is why I have rarely…and I mean REARLY met a true libertarian. It’s like saying that you are for the death penalty, killing illegals as they cross the border, for killing of abortion doctors…and then clam to be a Christian. That dog simply won’t hunt.

      • utopia27

        This is a bit out-of-date at this time (responding to a 2-yr-old comment. I know…)
        But I am your black swan – a dyed-in-the-wool left libertarian. I am left in that I believe in aggressive eradication of bigotry, prejudice, and discrimination. I’m pro-multi-culturalism. The only thing I’m intolerent of is intolerance. I’m pro gay marriage, pro drug legalization, and a foreign-policy dove.
        On economic policy, however, I’m very much in favor of the government setting boundaries – frequently guidance defining ‘actionable injury’, though sometimes setting a leveler for ‘intensity imbalance’ issues). I don’t feel government should intervene or implement unless that is the only available alternative to persistent infringement on people’s rights (particularly their right to avoid being injured).
        Probably my biggest digression from ‘canon’ libertarian thought is in education. I believe a child has a right to reach their potential through education, and that the community in which they reside has an affirmative duty to fulfill that right. That qualifies as heresy, I know, but kids bring out my bleeding heart. There are many issues that for adults are crystal clear – in which I have no caviles about consequences following choices. But children do not have the agency to make such choices, and deserve affirmative protections of their rights – even from themselves and their families.
        But – rest assured! There are genuine left-ey libertarians alive and active in the world. And now one has introduced himself to you.

  • Travis Hamilton

    I LOVE it when these freaks start yammering about the gold standard. Here is the problem with gold:

    Only $5 Trillion of gold has been mined in the history of mankind. Our outstanding debt and unfunded liabilities are roughly $100 Trillion.

    Do the math and weep.

    • John Clark

      Not to worry: going back to the gold standard would bring the entire world economy down way below that level…

    • strayaway

      Forget about gold for a moment. What’s your plan to pay off the $100T? Is it even possible without printing money? The amount you mention isn’t coming due all at once anyway. If gold isn’t the answer to paying down the $100T, what is?

      While I’m thinking of it, A Ford Mustang cost $2,500 or 66 ounces @ $35/ounce of gold back in 1970. Today, a Mustang costs $33,000 or 26 ounces of gold @ $1,250/ounce and that’s after gold had a bad year. Do the math and weep.

      • Betty Eyer

        How about paying off the debt with the productivity of a nation with a healthy GDP? It’s like gold, something you can’t eat that has limited uses, is somehow more valuable to you than food, steel, oil, rubber, plastics, chemicals, textiles, cars…..

      • strayaway

        Sounds wonderful. Maybe you could wave a magic wand and make it so or start you own business and create some jobs like the ones being shipped off to Asia because of government policy. Do you support the TPP that Obama is trying to sneak through? Libertarians oppose that.

      • Betty Eyer

        No, I don’t. There are quite a few things Obama does that I don’t support. But if I had the choice between him and McCain or Romney again, I’d make the same decision. I really wish there were other viable choices. I’ve even dabbled in the local green party but they can hardly organize a pot luck dinner, so I’m not holding out too much hope there.

      • strayaway

        I voted third party the last three times out which, I suppose, makes me a bit of an activist couch potato. I thought that McCain was the worst of the lot. I understand anyone who thinks in terms of two parties having voted for for Obama in 2008 as the lessor of two evils. Although I prefered Romney in 2012, I knew too much about him to vote for him. He was not the guy he pretended to be.

      • Susan Frost

        Which government policies, no taxes paid by most corporations, or no increase in wages for the past 30 yrs?

      • strayaway

        Three free trade treaties have been signed by Obama. One with Colombia, another with S. Korea, and I would have to look up the third. Since signing the free trade treaty with S. Korea, the balance of trade has gone in S. Korea’s favor. Candidate Obama in 2008 promised to make corrections to the NAFTA treaty. He lied and instead added these other treaties and is trying to ram through the TPP scam for his corporatist donor buddies.

      • Agaynst Roads

        Yes but you Obamanoids have no intention of allowing a healthy economy.

      • Betty Eyer

        I’m not an Obamanoid, Whether or not the economy is healthy is a matter of opinion…or rather a matter of whether you are at the top of the bottom of it. Corporate profits are breaking records as is the stock market. Oil production is in a boom. It’s the middle and lower class that is sinking, and I blame the GOP in Congress for that, although the trend is global and there is definitely more to it than what is happening inside our government. It’s not all black/white, GOP/Dems, my team/your team. If we are really going to solve problems we have to all work together, ditch the extremists on both sides, acknowledge the real problems and prioritize them and then make hard choices instead of sound bytes. I don’t see that happening anywhere except a few politicians no one is listening to.

      • Printing money is a solution to nothing. Printing money doesn’t create wealth, it only puts ink on paper.

      • Agaynst Roads

        It creates jobs for printers! Just like Krugman’s war with space aliens will!

      • Susan Frost

        Plz tell me where I could sell my 14k gold for anywhere near that price?

      • strayaway

        Today’s price of gold bullion is $1191. I just looked that up.

    • Betty Eyer

      Not to mention the fact that we create more people than gold, so deflation is a given.

      • Agaynst Roads

        More gibberish

      • Betty Eyer

        Not at all, it was quite clear. Also, somebody in Africa finds a new gold vein and it disrupts global economies. There’s a reason that the whole world started going away from it in the early part of the last century and it’s not some conspiracy. It’s that the gold standard CAUSED instability. Crack some history or economics book not written by Ron Paul sometime.

      • Pipercat

        Hey fuck face, try and tutor me. By the way asshole, you can’t post URLs here.

    • eccles11

      The biggest issue preventing a return to a gold standard is that even the mere mention of the plan would send gold prices skyrocketing. It will no longer be a stable backing as speculators seek to cash in on th new sky high demand for gold.

      Also, people’s pants would sag.

      • strayaway

        Congress used to set the price of the dollar; or instance, $35/ounce based on what the amount of gold owned by the federal government. Congress could just match the existing supply of federally owned gold and issued dollars. The ratio would be different but it is a simple thing to do. It would have nothing to do with speculators. One ounce of gold in your pocket would presently have $1,250 of spending value on the open market. How much does your wallet weigh in comparison?

        Day to day transactions were regulated by silver however. Each dollar used to have the promise written on it that it could be traded for silver upon demand. That was easy enough to do as dimes, quarters,and silver dollars were all 10% silver. Just go to the bank and trade paper dollars for rolls of quarters and the promise was fulfilled.

        One thing that was harder to do with a gold/silver standard was to create unfunded wars. Either the gold had to be spent or taxes had to be raised. Nixon caved instead of raising taxes.

    • Josh Fuchs

      98% of the value of the dollar lost in the last century. But lets make fun of the gold standard! Depressed liberal much?

  • Eddie Higgins

    Being Libertarian is like being bi-sexual you can’t make up you mind so you sit on a fence!

    • John Clark

      Pretty bi-phobic Eddie.

  • Patrick Picarsic

    I find myself to be a left-leaning Libertarian, and voted for Gary Johnson in the last election, and I would welcome them as an influential 3rd party. I think liberals and conservatives deserve to be offended by a party supporting such diverse ideas and innovative thoughts. Pro marriage equality while supporting the 2nd amendment. Ending the IRS and Federal Reserve and instituting a Federal Sales Tax instead of income tax. Pro-choice. Shrinking the military, Term limits for Senators and Congressmen. A more literal following of the constitution. What’s not to like?

    • Pipercat

      This notion of a national sales tax is one of the reasons I left the LP. It’s not innovative at all; in fact, it’s folly. Innovation requires thinking beyond notions of literal interpretations or the status quo. For example, tax risk instead of success. Personal and financial risk.

      • Dissenter13a

        Actually, it works pretty well in Australia and Europe, provided that you have a progressive tax system to reach a balance between the landed gentry and the laborer.

      • Pipercat

        Those are not exactly the bastions of Libertarian thinking, but very true none the less. My notions these days are leaning towards this notion of taxing risk. Consumption of alcohol and tobacco, gambling and that other gambling, speculative markets. Tax the risk and not the success. Of course, I’m still highly skeptical of any real change ever happening minus a monetary catastrophe.

  • Dissenter13a

    Allen, you have a gift for being consistently ridiculous not seen this side of Ted Cruz. All you have done is construct a straw man, unrepresentative of what libertarianism is: an intellectually-consistent starting point for rational discussion of the relationship between the individual and the Leviathan of the State. Didn’t you Poli Sci types have to read Hobbes and Locke?

    Libertarians speak of the Lockean bargain one makes when one enters into civil society: one gives up certain rights (such as the right to drive through a residential neighborhood playing a boom-box at 3 A.M.) and assumes other obligations (to pay taxes; contribute to the common defense) in exchange for a portfolio of “civil rights,” intended to protect those which were retained. This concept is expressed with uncommon clarity in the first dozen articles of the N.H. Constitution, spelling it out in blunt terms.

    Does this mean that we don’t need a public commons? Of course not! As the continued viability of the State depends on an adequately-educated populace, a robust program of public education is essential. Does it mean that we ought not have those pesky environmental regulations? Of course not! Most of us are practically addicted to clean air and water, and we all live downstream. Pollution is a subsidy to the producer, as it detracts from others’ rights to consume the air and water. Adam Smith capitalists do not believe in subsidies.

    Income inequality? A rational libertarian accepts the need for government to intervene, as a society where the benefits accrue to the few is inherently unstable. Adam Smith argued persuasively for a living minimum wage, and Jefferson explained the principle in the context of France to Madison in a letter, though it can be traced to the wisdom of the ancients. Jefferson was prescient, as he often was: that letter was written five years before the French Revolution.

    Same-sex marriage? Abortion? Marijuana consumption? The libertarian answer is the one the Framers’ Constitution encased in amber: the State must show a reason sufficient to infringe upon the liberty of its citizens. A right to general surveillance of the populace? That is more a part of the socialism you seem to embrace.

    Guns? I would argue that the individual should be able to own a Stinger missile. Why? I would strongly urge you to read the dissent of Judge Alex Kozinski of the 9th Circuit in Silviera v. Lockyer. He was born in Romania, and saw at first hand what it meant when no one had the means to oppose the predictable depredations of an all-powerful State. History repeats the lesson ad infinitum, with the latest examples including the failed Green Revolution in Iran.

    Back in the day, I could say with a straight face that the Republican was a practical libertarian. In remarkable contrast to his execrable brood, George Romney was an environmentalist (he was the driving force behind the old Rambler) who championed unions and racial equality. He was about where Bernie Sanders (if he ran for Prez, I would work for him) is now.

    Today’s Republican stands for theocratic and plutocratic fascism, which is unsustainable and anathema to the intellectual libertarian. In the words of Ronald Reagan, “I didn’t leave the Party. The Party left me.”

    • Andy Kinnard

      How do you reconcile your reasonable looking philosophy with the hopelessly jingoistic core of libertarianism represented by the many and hypervocal representatives such as Patrick (immediately below)? I feel like you and I could have a meaningful debate that lead to better mutual understanding and some meeting of the minds….someone who starts from “end the IRS and Fed”, not so much. How do we get a libertarian movement and party that reflects your ideology (instead of his)?

      • Dissenter13a

        We used to have one. It was called the Republican Party. 🙂

        This is libertarianism at its core, moderated by the principle that the perfect should not be the enemy of the good. When you “take your eyes off the prize,” and forget why we need a government in the first place, you get the kind of puritanism that discredits an otherwise ruthlessly-rational philosophy.

  • MLR

    Well since the only libertarian I know is Bill Maher I will not comment. Oh damn, I forgot about Rand Paul. But is he really libertarian or is he just wacko?. So again, I don’t know enough about the libertarian ideology to comment so I won’t.

    • Dissenter13a

      He’s just a whack job.

  • jwald1

    “A libertarian is nothing but a conservative with a bong”

  • ExRadioGuy15

    Here’s something I’ve mentioned several times: the closest to a Libertarian government this country has had was from 1776-1789….remember that the Constitutional Convention wasn’t held until 1787 and the Constitution didn’t become the law of the land until 1789….so, between the Declaration and the Constitution, the law of the land were the Articles of Confederation..
    The AOC were a Firebagger’s wet dream: small federal government, practically toothless and state governments ruled. 13 different sets of laws; 13 different sets of taxation, etc. It was CHAOS….
    If it weren’t for the Revolutionary War lasting until 1783, this country may have never been established with a Constitution.
    So, if you run into a Firebagger and they start talking about corrupt governments, etc., you can tell them that a type of government they wanted was tried already and it miserably failed….
    Whenever I write or talk about the AOC to the Firebaggers, they shut up pretty quick…then, I tell them that they’re reality-challenged and Fascism-suborning and they get mad, but have no answer LOL

    • Dissenter13a

      Exactumundo. Was it chaos … or Europe?

      We figured out that a loose confederation didn’t work, so we created a stronger one, and when even that failed, we created an even stronger one still. Rational libertarianism at work. Our government expanded, because we needed it to do so to meet our needs.

      • ExRadioGuy15

        Rational Libertarianism? I believe no such animal exists.
        Libertarian ideology is so flawed, like their reason for why a type of government they propose would work…
        “Spontaneous order”…According to that theory, if the federal government were made small or non-existent, groups of people would form and they’d leave each other alone.
        It is for this reason that I correctly say that Libertarian policies are “Fascism-suborning”, because, quite frankly, a group or several groups of Fascists would take over control of the country under “Spontaneous Order”….

      • Dissenter13a

        Where shall we start? Descartes’ cogito? The basic concept of formal society is grounded in enlightened self-interest, as Hobbes famously pointed out in his Leviathan, and the people of New Hampshire codified Article III of their Constitution:

        “When men enter into a state of society, they surrender up some of their natural rights to that society, in order to ensure the protection of others; and, without such an equivalent, the surrender is void.”

        Libertarianism is the natural child of Enlightenment rationalism. Once you accept as axiomatic that a state of society is preferable to a state of anarchy, it follows that society requires a public commons. The scope of what it ought to be is derived from Adam Smith’s theories; it is much more extensive than Ron Paul’s worst nightmares.

  • Victor Schmidt

    A metaphore for they belive is: if a person is sick, just kill the person. Then, there wouldn’t be sickness for EVER!

  • LibtertianThinker

    I couldn’t read it all… I got to the “and that’s /with/ regulation” part… so because regulations don’t make the world safer, your idea is MORE regulations? Please tell me how that’s worked out for gun control, drug prohibition, FDA approved drugs that kill people, etc etc?

  • thehawk84

    As somebody who is not a member of the Libertarian Party, but who has voted Libertarian (and Democratic and Republican, depending on the candidates), I find some of the statements in this column to be a little odd.

    “See, that’s one of the things that drives me nuts about Libertarians, even they can’t agree on what is or isn’t a ‘true Libertarian.’ Which you would think would instantly prove some of the major flaws in their ideology, but it doesn’t.” Every party has internal disagreements about ideology. Why is the failure of Libertarians to act as some sort of hive-mind a “major flaw”?

    “Libertarians are a unique bunch because they’re the only group of people I’ve met on both the far-left side of the political spectrum and the far-right. Again, another example that proves their ideology is extremely flawed, but it doesn’t.” The two-dimensional political spectrum is an occasionally useful framework in political discussions, but it’s not a law of nature. (FYI: Libertarians often prefer a quadrant system, with economic liberty on one axis and individual liberty on the other.) Judging Libertarian philosophy based on how it fits into an arbitrary classification model is absurd. Also, is the author really saying that there have never been conservative Democrats or liberal Republicans?

    The author goes on to cite several fair (though not unanswerable) criticisms of Libertarian philosophy. But I hope that people won’t judge Libertarians by the lunatic fringe of the party any more than they would see the worst examples of members of other parties as indicative of the whole. While Libertarians view excessive government intervention as destructive – whether that means a failed drug war or over-regulation – I don’t know anybody, including myself, who gets anywhere near anarchism, who opposes all clean air and clean water rules, or who doesn’t tune out whenever somebody starts talking about the gold standard. If Republicans would stop trying to control people’s private lives, or Democrats would be a little less enthusiastic about taxes and regulations – or either would make a serious effort to control government spending – most of us would probably find a home in one of those parties.

  • Gary Harryman

    Given a choice between living with libertarians or socialists, I would pick socialists.

  • KW

    It’s not true that all libertarians hold liberty and freedom as the highest value. Many believe that freedom is the best means for achieving some higher value, such as maximization of well-being for the worst off.

    You seem to be arguing against some people you met in a bar one night. I suggest you address the arguments of well-respected political philosophers and economists like Schmidtz, Gaus, Brennan, Zwolinski, Vernon Smith, Hayek, Cowen, Narveson, etc.

    “Look at what happened in West, Texas; West Virginia; the Gulf of Mexico. And that’s with regulations.”
    Right.

    “…money pumped into corrupting local politicians rather than federal.”
    Which makes it easier for people to vote with their feet.

    “But the truth is, when you ask Libertarians a simple question, “Name a successful society that’s existed in human history, or even presently, that was built on Libertarian ideology””
    Slavery is an unfortunate exception and was a relic of British rule in the United States. David Freedman names a number of well-functioning anarchist societies in his “Machinery of Freedom,” and that doesn’t include the many other societies and countries build on classical liberal ideology which are not anarchist.

    Again toward the end you are lumping a lot of different beliefs under the name libertarianism. That is fair because there are a lot of people who take libertarianism in a loose way, but not all people who identify with limited government political philosophy are anarchists.

    • Agaynst Roads

      So there were regulations and government spent trillions hiring people to inspect and enforce, and we have pollution in West Virginia, exploding factories in Texas, and poisoned Chinese imports. Sound like the voluntary sector would have done a better job inspecting and grading products and workplaces, and private ownership of streams and rivers would have protected better against trespass and vandalism.

  • I love these amusing little uninformed robot kids the Soros and Podesta groups hire. The poor sap doesn’t realize in his ignorance that if the worst he can say about too little government is too mention Somalia that is eclipsed by his then having to accept Pol Pot, Stalin, Hitler and Mussolini as examples of his faith in government. Anyone would rather be stranded in Somalia.

    • Betty Eyer

      I’m amused at someone who is so delusional as to think that anyone who disagrees with him on the internet is paid to do so. And who lumps so many different historical figures together and puts “big government” as a label over them. None of those people rose to power because there were too many food inspectors. They rose to power because of military power grabs.

      • True. This is just a blog for wannabes who want to be Soros flaks. Not actually hired like those at the Center for American Progress.

      • Betty Eyer

        Delusional.

  • John Hunter

    I’d say this belongs on the Onion but it isn’t even funny

  • Zarathustra

    Somalia is the opposite of Libertarian paradise. It Is run by religious whack jobs that use the power of government to intimidate people who are not practicing the right religion by keeping food and government services away from them. The part of Somalia is “free” is under authoritarian control by international forces. Allen you are deluded half-wit. You support state power as much as you like, I on the other hand am opposed to it because of the abuses both nanny state liberals and religious whack jobs commit. Obama was elected and we are still being molested by the TSA, NSA and GITMO is still open, yeah HUGE change from George Bush.

  • Jim

    Apart from the needless ad hominem that detracts from this article from the very first paragraph, my sense is the author doesn’t actually know much about libertarianism [small ‘l’!] because he presents a cartoonish, extreme version that amounts to a straw man.

    Are there extremists against even fire codes? Sure – but they’re anarchists, and most libertarians aren’t anarchists. Government has a role, but the basic issue is where ‘should’ draw the line. Reasonable people can differ, however a related issue is whether the government should be limited by the Constitution from which it derives its power… I see libertarians as saying yes when both the right wing and self-described progressives would prefer to ignore any such limits to force their viewpoints on other people.

    Give absolute power, I’d much rather moderate libertarians run things than right wingers or left wingers.

    Progressives would be burning books and sending people to political re-education camps if no party opposed them. There’s lots of precedent – from Lenin, and Stalin to Mao to the needlessly bloody history of the French Revolution(s). Progressivism has had this tendency to kill people. Tough to see how a more libertarian government would do so {allowing that their sin might be to *let you die*)

    Libertarian thinking is not a monolith. Rather than make enemies out of smart, politically active potential allies, I encourage people to check out reason dot com and zerohedge to actually read about libertarian thinking – not some ignorant parody of it.

  • Matthew Reece

    “Libertarians are a unique bunch because they’re the only group of people
    I’ve met on both the far-left side of the political spectrum and the
    far-right. Again, another example that proves their ideology is
    extremely flawed, but it doesn’t.”

    This does not prove that libertarian philosophy is flawed. It proves that the left-right spectrum is flawed. Trying to put libertarianism in general and free market anarchism in particular on the left-right spectrum is like trying to put black somewhere in the ROYGBIV spectrum, or strong atheism somewhere between Christianity and Islam.

  • Matthew Reece

    “Name a successful society that’s existed in human history, or even presently, that was built on Libertarian ideology.”

    This query commits the argumentum ad ignorantium fallacy. Just because there has not yet been a libertarian stateless society does not mean that there cannot be one in the future. Note that if someone in the year 1700 had said, “Name a successful society that’s existed in human history, or even presently, that was built on the ideology of a republican form of government limited by a written constitution,” that there would have been no example at the time, although there are examples now. Who knows what the next few centuries will bring?

  • Filby

    So much silliness concentrated into one article, so difficult to know where to start but a few easy rebuttals:
    – Somalia: If you want Libertarians to defend every place with lack of governance because we believe in small government, then you should defend every tinpot dictator: Pol Pot, Stalin, Mao, etc. Heck, even Somalia is better off with no government than it was earlier, at least according to 11 of 14 UN indices!
    – Discussing slavery and genocide of Indians by the US Gov. hardly seems to be a plus for your argument.
    – “Corruption that’s caused by politicians who are heavily influenced by lobbyists, big businesses and the wealthy.” So your answer is more powerful politicians who will attract like bees to honey even more these lobbyists, big business, wealthy? Google regulatory capture. In what fantasy world do you get rid of this except to reduce the power of politicians to serve these constituents? Oh yes, getting money out of politics with government-funded elections. Ha ha ha. And what will you do when someone tries to run independently and put up their own signs, or go door to door and ask people to write them in. Point a gun at their heads? Throw them in jail?
    – “Name a successful society that’s existed in human history, or even presently, that was built on Libertarian ideology” Correct, there’s never been a society where the government always protects rights. And what is your argument for moving in that direction?

  • martintfre

    the ideology of freedom is the bane of individual hating collectivist.
    The more individual rights are protected the wealthier the people at large are,
    The more individual rights are oppressed the more power is concentrated in the hands of a few government officials and their low friends in high places.

    The closest model to free market capitalism would be Hong Kong – a tiny speck of land with zero natural resources – yet before it was handed over to the communist it was 1/8 the economy of the collectivist nightmare known as mainland China

  • Filby

    So much concentrated ignorance in one place! To shred just two pieces:
    >“Name a successful society that’s existed in human history, or even presently, that was built on Libertarian ideology”. We have never had a government which protects rights perfectly. But it does protect rights sometimes, and outcomes are better when it does than when it doesn’t. Shouldn’t we try to move the needle in the right direction. Is this an argument for a government which does not protect rights?
    >And no, the United States wasn’t built on “freedom.” We started this nation with slavery and expanded it with genocide.” Slavery and genocide were constructs of the US government and worsened by them. Funny thing to bring up to defend government.

  • Angel Rivera

    Maybe the problem is that it is all a theoretical economic and political concept that breaks down when the human element is involved. Capitalism, socialism, communism, even libertarianism are all great on paper but all have consequences when applied and many things not factored in. many that champion these concepts aim to create an utopian society that will never exist. Take the last economic crisis, its not that the lack of regulations that created the crisis but people that saw a way to make money and went ahead without thinking of the consequences. Regulation is not to regulate the economy, its to regulate the people. Quite a few economic firms went down because of the actions of a few people. I think that until we can find a way to negate many of the human frailties then there will always be a collapse of some kind.

  • Ivan Drago

    So the author asserts that Libertarians are wrong about everything, but never actually gets around to making any arguments as to why they are wrong.

  • Josh Fuchs

    Welfare of the left and Warfare from the right have destroyed the economy: lets blame libertarians! The hyperventilating editorials on the internet like this, are the last ditch attempts by the clergy of socialism called the modern state to discredit the truth. Theft is wrong. Taxes are theft. Lets start using reason and philosophy guys, sarcasm can’t run an economy.

  • Kyron Huigens

    The tree tenets of Libertarianism:
    1. You’re not the boss of me.
    2. It’s mine! You can’t have any.
    3. Look, mommy! I did it all by myself.

  • Billy Heir

    “Freedom” and “liberty”, ha. Anyone who values those things as the basis of a political philosophy is probably an inbred derelict. Libertarians try to tell me that police should punish polluters and charge them with harming our bodies and ‘private property’. What a joke. Principles are nice, in theory. But in reality we need a big federal government to set the policies for all of our business, and their friends in banking and lobbying should get a fair, high wage for organizing things in the reasonable, effective way that makes our country so strong and virile.

  • Abram Lutes

    As someone who identifies as a Libertarian Socialist (hold your horses right-wingers, that is actually a thing), I feel compelled to clarify a few issues with this article. All of these are viable arguments against the Right-wing or “royal” libertarians as they are sometimes called, but not left and socialist libertarians. We do not believe in less regulations and standards, but rather less monopolies. For example, the US Federal Reserve and Central Bank only hold accounts for the top 5 corporate banks in the US (Bank of America, HSBC, etc.) but no smaller banks such as co-ops and credit unions, which are actually more effective, provide better customer service, and have a much higher durability dur to their close financial ties to their customers and local communities. A Left Libertarian belies that if there is to be central banking, it should open accounts for all banks in the USA, rather than letting the top five corporate entities have a massive monopoly on credit and financial capital. However, while this has worked with huge success In Poland where the SKOR co-op outperforms corporate banks, this is statistically impossible in a geographically expansive and population as large the USA. As such, each state should have its own “central” bank that represents all banks and creditors involved in that state’s banking market. Furthermore, we support that natural resources are common property to all, but that private ownership of land is essential for the small man in a vicious market. As a compromise, we believe that in place of an income tax, there should be a land value tax proportionate to the value and purpose of land. This meaning that prime real estate usually owned by the wealthy would be highly taxed, but that farmers and Wood lot owners would receive tax cuts because they are using their land for an essential service (farming and forestry respectively). We oppose the tyranny of corporate copyright, meaning that copyright and intellectual property should be held only by the individual or group of individuals directly involved in inventing a technology or service until their deaths, which afterwards it would become common property increasing market competition to provide said product in a more efficient, higher quality, more sustainable, and cheaper manner. This would eliminate ridiculous paradoxes such as Nike charging $300 for shoes which it pays its workers in Bangladesh about $1 a day to make (which it can only do because it holds copyrights on the names and designs of said shoes). We believe in “small” government only in the sense that it be directly accountable to the people it represents. As such, State and Federal politicians should be instantly removed from office at the request of the majority of the members of their constituency in the form of signed requests. We also believe that any constitutional amendments or significant changes in foreign or domestic policy should be subject to either public consultation or direct referendum (see Switzerland). This also means that government should not be involved in Unions, since the very purpose of a Union or to jointly represent the working people against both corporate and government oppression and government sponsorship simply kills their radical edge. We also believe in cutting welfare, but from the top down, eliminating ridiculous subsidies and bailouts for government favorites In the corporate sector. Finally, we believe that if you work it, you have right to own it, and such most businesses, especially those that make up the majority of the nation’s workforce, should transition through union and worker action towards a Co-operative structure, which is both better for workers and more economically durable. Co-operatives are also proven to be able to compete on an international level and come out successful, such as the Mondragon Co-operative Corporation from Spain which manufactures appliances and furniture across the EU. (side note– we also support legalizing marijuana since it is proven to be mostly harmless and the mass availability of cannabis and hemp leads to the opening of a competitive and sustainable alternative to plastics and concrete in the form of biodegradable hemp versions of plastic and concrete). As for more real-life examples, I encourage everyone to research the Paris Commune, Freetown Chrystiana, and Catalonia under the CNT (George Orwell wrote a great book about that period in Spanish history).

  • John Clark

    Its been a month, yet they keep coming back. Frankly, I worry about their consistency in even being on the Internets: its a big government created network which libertarians should not even want to use.

  • Doh

    The libertarians in the comments have done nothing except prove that none of them agree on exactly what libertarianism is supposed to be.

  • Yechiel Shlipshon

    Three people were walking on a ledge, splinted and with a river running in the middle. Each on the other side invited the other to come over and walk with him, while the third person suggested each one wait until they all got to a place where they could meet and not fall into the river. The conservative said yes, better safe than sorry. The Libertarian said lets meet now, as each is free to choose. So the third person watched as the Libertarian tried to get over to the other side, and felled into the river; the Conservative accepted the fact of what happened and walked on. When the third person made his report, he responded to the question of why he thought the Libertarian did not listen. “He could not let his ego be quiet long enough to listen.”

  • Brian Duda

    I assume you don’t understand libertarians because you only know the world of the authoritarian.

  • Eric Naville

    Honestly, I have rarely read something so full of bloated shit as seen in this article. You held libertarians responsible for the actions of your local government you disagree with. You seem to think that libertarians want to get rid of any referee party. Then you assume Somalia is an example of libertarianism. Some sentences are complete gibberish: “What I always laugh at about their system of beliefs is how corrupt they veiw government as being.” There are a few people who have heavily influenced the direction the movement has taken, Ludwig von Mises or Rothbard for example. Their
    views are quite clear and coherent, explained to the point of exhaustion. If you bothered to read any of it, you might actually understand even a fraction of what you write about on the topic, and probably spare us this nonsense.