Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Competing Free Advice for Libertarians!

First from notorious Canadian Alex T at Marginal Revolution: Why Libertarians Should Vote for Obama. An excerpt:

First, war. War is the antithesis of the libertarian philosophy of consent, voluntarism and trade. With every war in American history Leviathan has grown larger and our liberties have withered. War is the health of the state. And now, fulfilling the dreams of Big Brother, we are in a perpetual war.

A country cannot long combine unlimited government abroad and limited government at home. The Republican party has become the party of war and thus the party of unlimited government.

With war has come FEAR, magnified many times over by the governing party. Fear is pulling Americans into the arms of the state. If only we were better at resisting. Alas, we Americans say that we love liberty but we are fair-weather lovers. Liberty will flourish only with peace.

Have libertarians gained on other margins in the past eight years? Not at all. Under the Republicans we have been sailing due South-West on the Nolan Chart – fewer civil liberties and more government, including the largest new government program in a generation, the Medicare prescription drug plan, and the biggest nationalization since the Great Depression. Tax cuts, the summum bonum of Republican economic policy, are a sham. The only way to cut taxes is to cut spending and that has not happened.

However, here is the wonderful Vin Suprynowicz with a slightly different point of view:

I'm considering voting for a major party's presidential ticket this year, for the first time in decades. As a matter of fact, it would mark the first time I've voted the top of the ticket for this particular party in my life.

I've met the presidential nominee. He's got character. He's also a likeable guy -- most politicians share that asset -- though he's clearly a creature of the Senate, where respect for freedom and limited government are laughed at, deemed a handicap in "making the deal."

Over the past year, though, he's run a come-from-behind Cinderella campaign that could become the stuff of legend. And then last week, he did something that made our enemies afraid.

That made me take notice.

Mind you, there's a good moral case to be made for not voting. By participating in the election, you tacitly acknowledge the winner has the right to do all the awful, unconstitutional, morally wrong things they now do in our names.

I still vote largely because the "Libertarian" button is available. This year, though, the Libertarian Party has nominated Fearless Drug Warrior Bob Barr, a man who has opposed medical marijuana initiatives, opposed needle exchanges, a man who zealously locked up for years those seeking to peacefully medicate themselves or help others to do so, shoving them into small cages.

The only two things these posts seem to agree on is that Libertarians should not vote for Barr (Alex implicitly and Vin quite explicitly)!! Now where have I heard that before?


br said...

So is the conclusion that since 3 politicians are lying to us, we should out-think them and vote for the one who will do the opposite of what he says, which is what we wanted in the first place?

Their marketing messages are all inconsistent with their voting records. I'm not going to try to out-think these idiots. I'll just vote for the one (Barr) who's telling me what I want to hear.

Robert S. Porter said...

I think you meant to say "notorious Canadian-American Alex T at Marginal Revolution".

Angus said...

Lol, I MEANT to say what I said, but maybe I SHOULD have said what you put. Did INS slip up and give AT citizenship?

Robert S. Porter said...

Yes they did, three years ago.

Tom said...

Angus, Alex T, and Suprynowicz have lost their marbles. First Alex -- he should read what he writes: "War is the antithesis of the libertarian philosophy of consent, voluntarism and trade." (emphasis added) Libertarians are very careful to say they're against aggression, not war, per se. So, he's just wrong about that "antithesis." But it gets worse when his antidote is to vote for the explicitly anti-trade Obama!? It may be old hat to say "when goods don't cross borders, armies will," but that's still the way to bet.

Suprynowicz is an unforgiving hardliner who won't let go of Barr's past, even tho Barr has. Since leaving Congress, Barr has worked for the Marijuana Policy Project, apologised for (at least some of) his past excesses, and pledged to work to correct his mistakes. Contrast that with Obama? Have you heard any indication that he'll relax the drug war in any way?

Don't be bitter -- voting for the duopoly will get you MORE duopoly. Both McPalin and O'biden say they want Change. Let's give 'em some!

Angus said...

Hey!! What'd I do???