Sunday, April 19, 2009

What Is A Libertarian?

For my first I need to address the obvious.

I am asked that question often. Most people think I am a moderate because I tend to fall in the middle. I AM NOT A MODERATE. To me, a moderate is someone who stands by and does nothing while watching someone do something awful. Think of the South Park episode about the South Park flag. The citizens who said yes it's racist, but it's also freedom of speech are moderates.

I am a Libertarian. I am a Catholic. But I do not consider myself a Libertarian Catholic or a Catholic Libertarian. I do not allow my religion to influence my views and I do not allow my political positions to influence what religion I follow. I believe in God. I will also not assume his position in ANY issue. NOBODY can tell me that God is pro-life, against the death penalty, etc. No one knows for sure. Instead I will ask Him when I meet Him.

Yes my views fall in the middle, but I have a firm belief in each issue. Take these for example. I am pro-choice. I am pro-death penalty. I am pro-gay marriage. I am pro-marijuana. I am pro-minimal government. I am all for legalizing victimless crimes. I am a very firm believer in separation of church and state.

That is the one thing I do not like about the Republican and Democrat parties. They do not allow any wiggle room. It seems to me you cannot be a pro-life, pro-death penalty Democrat. You cannot be a pro-choice, anti-death penalty Republican.

I received all of this information from the website

This is my favorite entry: The Libertarian way is a logically consistent approach to politics based on the moral principle of self-ownership. Each individual has the right to control his or her own body, action, speech, and property. Government's only role is to help individuals defend themselves from force and fraud.

Click on the above link. In the issues you can click you will see that they do not state abortion, gay marriage, or other social issues that aren't affected by our tax money. Why is that? BECAUSE IT IS NOT THE GOVERNMENT'S BUSINESS WHAT WE DO IN OUR DOCTOR'S OFFICE OR BEDROOMS. Libertarians want minimal government in our lives.

Here are a few of my favorite excerpts.
  • We believe that respect for individual rights is the essential precondition for a free and prosperous world, that force and fraud must be banished from human relationships, and that only through freedom can peace and prosperity be realized.
  • We hold that all individuals have the right to exercise sole dominion over their own lives, and have the right to live in whatever manner they choose, so long as they do not forcibly interfere with the equal right of others to live in whatever manner they choose.
  • Governments throughout history have regularly operated on the opposite principle, that the State has the right to dispose of the lives of individuals and the fruits of their labor. Even within the United States, all political parties other than our own grant to government the right to regulate the lives of individuals and seize the fruits of their labor without their consent. We, on the contrary, deny the right of any government to do these things, and hold that where governments exist, they must not violate the rights of any individual: namely, (1) the right to life -- accordingly we support the prohibition of the initiation of physical force against others; (2) the right to liberty of speech and action -- accordingly we oppose all attempts by government to abridge the freedom of speech and press, as well as government censorship in any form; and (3) the right to property -- accordingly we oppose all government interference with private property, such as confiscation, nationalization, and eminent domain, and support the prohibition of robbery, trespass, fraud, and misrepresentation.
  • Sexual orientation, preference, gender, or gender identity should have no impact on the rights of individuals by government, such as in current marriage, child custody, adoption, immigration or military service laws. Consenting adults should be free to choose their own sexual practices and personal relationships. Government does not have the authority to define, license or restrict personal relationships.
  • Recognizing that abortion is a sensitive issue and that people can hold good-faith views on all sides, we believe that government should be kept out of the matter, leaving the question to each person for their conscientious consideration.
In other words, people need to take responsibility for themselves!

Another question I am asked: Are you liberal or conservative? I am neither! Here is what the Libertarian Party had to say about it: 
Libertarians are neither. Unlike liberals or conservatives, Libertarians advocate a high degree of both personal and economic liberty. For example, Libertarians advocate freedom in economic matters, so we're in favor of lowering taxes, slashing bureaucratic regulation of business, and charitable -- rather than government -- welfare. But Libertarians are also socially tolerant.  We won't demand laws or restrictions on other people who we may not agree because of personal actions or lifestyles. Think of us as a group of people with a "live and let live" mentality and a balanced checkbook. In a sense, Libertarians “borrow” from both sides to come up with a logical and consistent whole -- but without the exceptions and broken promises of Republican and Democratic politicians. That's why we call ourselves the Party of Principle.

Just as I mentioned above. Being a Libertarian allows me wiggle room. I cannot belong to the Republican party because I am pro-choice. I cannot belong to the Democrat party because I am pro-death penalty. 

I also cannot stand it when people tell me I wasted my vote on Ralph Nader. If someone votes it is not a waste. It is not a waste to stand up and let everyone, especially the government, know where you stand. I let the government know that I am sick and tired of the Democrats and Republicans. I let everyone know that I am ready for a third party candidate to be in office. 

Tomorrow I will post on some thoughts by my favorite Libertarian, Bernard Goldberg and his book Crazies to the Left of Me, Wimps to the Right: How One Side Lost Its Mind and the Other Lost Its Nerve.

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