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Libertarian populism is bunk


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#1    Jessica Christ

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 08:32 AM

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Have you heard about “libertarian populism” yet? If not, you will. It will surely be touted all over the airwaves and the opinion pages by the same kind of people who assured you, a few years ago, that Representative Paul Ryan was the very model of a Serious, Honest Conservative. So let me make a helpful public service announcement: It’s bunk.

Some background: These are tough times for members of the conservative intelligentsia —those denizens of think tanks and opinion pages who dream of Republicans once again becoming “the party of ideas.” (Whether they ever were that party is another question.)

For a while, they thought they had found their wonk hero in the person of Mr. Ryan. But the famous Ryan plan turned out to be crude smoke and mirrors, and I suspect that even conservatives privately realize that its author is more huckster than visionary. So what’s the next big idea?

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Edited by The world needs you, 12 July 2013 - 08:33 AM.


#2    Sir Wearer of Hats

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 08:36 AM

I love how it sinks quickly into slagging off the Republican Party with lines like "the party of ideas, if they ever were"

ignoring things like emancipation bring a Republocan idea.
Wasn't Socail Security and Medicaid Republican ideas too?

I must not fear. Fear is the Mind-Killer. It is the little death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear.
I will permit it to pass over me and to move through me. And when it is gone I will turn the inner eye to see it's path.
When the fear is gone, there will be nothing.
Only I will remain.

#3    Valdemar the Great

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 08:50 AM

Heavens, all this heavyweight political analysis, heaily leavened with satire, gives me a headache. Do people really take any of these people seriously any more? It really does just encourage them.

Life is a hideous business, and from the background behind what we know of it peer daemoniacal hints of truth which make it sometimes a thousandfold more hideous.

H. P. Lovecraft.


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#4    Jessica Christ

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 09:02 AM

View PostColonel Rhuairidh, on 12 July 2013 - 08:50 AM, said:

Heavens, all this heavyweight political analysis, heaily leavened with satire, gives me a headache. Do people really take any of these people seriously any more? It really does just encourage them.

Some do. Krugman is a Nobel Prize-winning professor at Princeton.

While his words won't convert the libertarian populist base it will alert those who up to now were unaware of that fringe part of society.

Edited by The world needs you, 12 July 2013 - 09:05 AM.


#5    Frank Merton

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 10:07 AM

The idea is simple: get the government out of our lives so we can live them the way we choose.  A bit tough to actually achieve in a society of millions, each demanding the same thing.


#6    Mikko-kun

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 10:33 AM

Divide the country to smaller fractions and give them more power over their lives, more local form of democracy. Or divide the states to counties, if you like, but that's the principle.

Why I think it's good, because if you make a harmful decision, it won't affect 250 million people, but 5 million, or 500 000. It's also easier to buy politicians when you have less of them, but when you have more of them, you need more effort. And not everyone might be for sale.

The politicians we have dont exactly excel at making healthy changes for the better, even if those changes were initially seen as scary, new and met with untrust. Because that hurts their career. With smaller-scale democracy you wouldn't probably have to have so much pain working your way up in politics, so you could risk your career more easily for those kind of decisions. Many people fall for rather keeping the seemingly-good status quo than even trying out something new that could make things for the better in the long run, after the initial doubt and initial expenses of adaptation.

There will always be people refusing the new things, because it's a thing in your mind to refuse new things of certain kind.

I've been born again 31,8,2014 approximately 21:35 local time. A moment free of clutter in the mind, emancipating myself like an escapist, allowing myself to breathe life in a stronger, less physical level... though it does resonate to physical world. It's the oomph.

#7    Frank Merton

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 10:39 AM

The Greek Polis had it about right -- a city of 20,000 to 50,000 along with its surrounding countryside.  Anything much smaller and basic civilization, such as weekly live symphony orchestras, become hard to sustain.  Anything much larger and its ungovernable.


#8    Jeremiah65

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 01:55 PM

Some people still don't understand what the foundations of Libertarianism is about.  They continue to spew the idea that it is about big business and knocking the working class hero off the unemployment or temporary assistance train.

Not true.

"Real" Libertarianism is not about "no government"...it is about "limited government".  No Gov is anarchism...and that is not what we are about.  We Libertarians recognize the need for gov...we just see places it has it's nose stuck where it does not belong.  We see policies that need to be re-thought.

I am not and have never been against unemployment "insurance"...people and their employers pay into it and a person is entitled to make claims against that "insurance" just like you do when you have an auto accident or get sick and make a health insurance claim.  It is insurance and should be used as such.

True Libertarians are not about "no gov"...we simply believe that there are certain things that the gov has no place in being involved...such as...a consensual contract between two individuals for goods or services...we tend to believe in the phrases "caveat emptor" (let the buyer beware) and "caveat venditor" (let the seller beware).

At the very most....the Gov's place in business is to facilitate it...not control it.


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Oh well....some folks "get it" and some never will....

"Liberty means responsibility.  That is why most men dread it."  George Bernard Shaw
"I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it."  Thomas Jefferson

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#9    praetorian-legio XIII

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 02:43 PM

It seems to me that the dismal state of this once confident, proud, finanicailly secure, patriotic country is the result of not one side or the other but a combination of both.

Libertarians, as I consider myself, might be the change needed to break the stagnant mold of our over sized, inaffective, corrupt government (naive as that may sound). I don't think that a smaller less intursive federal government is a bad thing. I don't think that the states having more control to govern themselves, given to them by the citizens of that state is a bad thing. I don't think that upholding the constitution and bill of rights is a bad thing. I don't think that a return to basic common sense and throwing polical correctness out the window is a bad thing. I don't think that running the lobbiests out of D.C. is a bad thing. I don't think think that controlling our borders is a bad thing.

I  think that impeaching the president along with a majority of the senate and house members is a good thing. I think that the american people taking back control of this out of control administration is a good thing.

So for those of you that will continue to argue one side of the aisle or the other, you've help put us where we are today and where, without some real change ( the libertarian party?), the state of the US will only get worse for us, our children and their children.


#10    Valdemar the Great

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 02:50 PM

So is Obama a uniquely evil phenomenon in this regard, then? Does the previous adminstration equally deserve censure?

Life is a hideous business, and from the background behind what we know of it peer daemoniacal hints of truth which make it sometimes a thousandfold more hideous.

H. P. Lovecraft.


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#11    Jeremiah65

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 02:59 PM

View Postpraetorian-legio XIII, on 12 July 2013 - 02:43 PM, said:

It seems to me that the dismal state of this once confident, proud, finanicailly secure, patriotic country is the result of not one side or the other but a combination of both.

Libertarians, as I consider myself, might be the change needed to break the stagnant mold of our over sized, inaffective, corrupt government (naive as that may sound). I don't think that a smaller less intursive federal government is a bad thing. I don't think that the states having more control to govern themselves, given to them by the citizens of that state is a bad thing. I don't think that upholding the constitution and bill of rights is a bad thing. I don't think that a return to basic common sense and throwing polical correctness out the window is a bad thing. I don't think that running the lobbiests out of D.C. is a bad thing. I don't think think that controlling our borders is a bad thing.

I  think that impeaching the president along with a majority of the senate and house members is a good thing. I think that the american people taking back control of this out of control administration is a good thing.

So for those of you that will continue to argue one side of the aisle or the other, you've help put us where we are today and where, without some real change ( the libertarian party?), the state of the US will only get worse for us, our children and their children.

Excellent points.

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I am continuously amazed at how the extreme left and right (and the absolute polarization they are causing) do not realize the terrible damage they are doing.  

Divide and conquer...just step out of your usual position and take a slow look around yourself...the tactic works and the damage is obvious all around you...if you choose to see it.

Empowering the States is a "must" in my humble opinion...

Controlling the lobbyists and special interest groups is a must...

Returning to the basic fundamentals of the Constitution (and it's limits on power of Gov) and the Bill of Rights...an absolute must...

Just my opinion...and apparently...a growing opinion...seeing how the Libertarian party is the fastest growing party in the country...funny....Paul "Thugman" didn't mention that in his article though...

Edited by Jeremiah65, 12 July 2013 - 03:02 PM.

"Liberty means responsibility.  That is why most men dread it."  George Bernard Shaw
"I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it."  Thomas Jefferson

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#12    Frank Merton

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 03:03 PM

Libertarianism derives from the word liberty, and to most Americans that means personal freedom, although it also has a secondary meaning of the freedom of a nation from colonial or hegemonic power by another nation.  (These two different meanings are often confused.  For example, the Declaration of Independence talks about liberty with the second, not the first, meaning).

I think liberty should be seen as essentially a good thing but more as a means to even better things -- prosperity and happiness and dignity -- and there are times when personal liberty needs sacrificing for greater goods.  The liberty of the plutocrat to abuse employees and customers and suppliers needs limiting.  The liberty of the rights holder to withhold from the public access to valuable books needs limiting.  The liberty of the church to ring its bells in the middle of the night disturbing the sleep of neighbors needs limiting.


#13    Jeremiah65

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 03:18 PM

Well Frank, that was a difference I had hoped to discuss.  "Libertarian" does not equal "Anarchist".

Everything you said is basically true.  One of the core planks of the platform is "you should be free to live as you wish as long as your freedom does not impose upon the freedom of another".

I will not cross the fence and come into your yard and tell you how to live...I expect the same courtesy in return.  If you bring you baggage and laundry out onto the front sidewalk...then we might need to talk.

Public decency is expected of everyone.  If you want to sit naked in your house (behind closed doors and curtains) and play video games, smoke weed or watch porn...I do not care...just don't bring it out on the sidewalk and we will be just fine.

The freedom to make a living doing what you do best without over regulation license fees and requirements...

The freedom to prosper from your decisions or suffer their consequences....

The freedom to choose what you put in or take out of your body...

Yes, there are certain expectations or limits that are required for what we like to consider being "social" or "civilized"...those are common sense...

ETA...

As a side note, most people have totally the wrong view of what an "Anarchist" truly is.  Anarchists do not long for the "Road Warrior" world...they truly believe that it is within man to one day be totally self governing...that within each of us is born the spark of "goodness"...the knowledge of right and wrong and that humanity has the capacity to know the difference and choose to be good.

Edited by Jeremiah65, 12 July 2013 - 03:24 PM.

"Liberty means responsibility.  That is why most men dread it."  George Bernard Shaw
"I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it."  Thomas Jefferson

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#14    Frank Merton

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 03:29 PM

I see nothing wrong with walking down the street bare-ass naked, provided you aren't old and fat like me.

Personally I put more emphasis on prosperity and order than on freedom, but as a philosophical matter it is of little import  It is some of the specific policies that some identified as Libertarians, and in particular, their opposition to the independence of the Federal Reserve, that I feel misguided.

Vietnam is not a "free" country as Americans like to think of themselves as being; it is a subject that tires me no end with those few Americans who have the insulting tendency to want to argue it (until recently I visited the States often but now my retirement is upon me).  I have several times made lists of ways in which I am much freer than are most Americans.


#15    spartan max2

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 03:32 PM

Libertarians FTW :P

Edited by spartan max2, 12 July 2013 - 03:34 PM.

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