James Leroy Wilson's one-man magazine.

Sunday, December 18, 2005

libertarian is a dirty word

Logan Ferree, in his Daily Kos diary, continues to encourage the Democratic Party to reach out to libertarians. Which I think would be a good thing, as the Republicans are not likely to take an anti-war, pro-civil liberties position anytime soon. But as the comments to Logan's post indicate, just saying the word "libertarian" gets some people riled up. Libertarians are greedy bastards, end of story. Some had the attitude of, "A LIBERTARIAN is voting for us? We don't want that!"

Can the Democratic Party become a coalition built around peace, civil liberties, and fiscal responsibility? One would hope so, if the Democratic leadership actually stood up for these things. This is a far cry from adopting the full Libertarian Party platform, but may well attract libertarian votes.

But every time - and this also happens on the right - every time somebody says something about reaching out to libertarians, then "Libertarianism" itself is put on trial. On the left, a libertarian states his opposition against the war, and the next thing you know he's forced to defend his position on public schools. On the right, the libertarian talks about his hatred of the income tax, and the next thing you know conservatives are pestering him for his position on drugs.

It seems like there isn't a home for even pragmatic, coalition-building libertarians.


  1. philgoblue is a shithead. After Logan rubbed his nose in the indisputable fact that not all free market libertarians are "greedy Republicans" or "social Darwinists," he went right on parroting the same rhetoric. After a certain point, you have to conclude that they are not genuinely ignorant, but are arguing in bad faith. They are deliberately and knowingly repeating a lie.

  2. Heh I didn't realize (until just now) that you had a blog.
    I've been really liking your stuff in the Partial Observer.

    I get into these pointless arguments a lot with my friends who are social-democratic types. But in the end, they at least agree to disagree and kind of forget that we had the discussion.
    But I always am troubled for a while afterwards because it seems like not only did they not actually hear what I was saying, but they didn't want to.
    And that has some really unpleasant implications...