Skip to main content

View Diary: What Conservatives Mean When They Say "Libertarian" (279 comments)

Comment Preferences

  •  I know some (real) Libertarians (4+ / 0-)

    ...including an editor of Hayek's works (Hayek = most frequently abused name in support of government-for-the-businesses).

    The Libertarians I know are concerned about government invasions of rights - especially encroachments on privacy. They are the ones that notice that computer usage in libraries haven't been protected in the same was as books. The record of books you've checked out is private: but your every move on the library computer can be tracked. Real Libertarians actually think about these things.

    Real Libertarians are tolerant. They don't think the law of the land should be enforcing any religious or moral system. A real Libertarian will protect the rights of LGBT people and will object to laws against recreational drug use. Fake Libertarians will focus on "freedom of speech" for people who want to limit everyone else's freedoms, and the right to bear arms (to defend their pile of food from all the people they are trying to starve).

    Most important of all, real Libertarians have a sense of public stewardship. They know that people have to work together to maintain water, power supply, garbage collection, and roads. They are willing to discuss when one freedom impinges on another (example: right to smoke vs. right to clean air). You can debate health care and even "social justice" ideas with a real Libertarian: and they will be willing to pay into it if they think it's in the public interest. Real Libertarians may support environmental causes, considering the rights of animals or the survival of the planet as a whole.

    I don't agree with some Libertarian positions, and I don't consider myself one. I think we need to balance our freedoms against mutual responsibility, and our level of civilization requires guaranteeing everyone we allow into the world a means of meeting their basic needs (food, shelter, water, health care, means of communication). I believe in maximizing liberty within the context of progressive civilization.

    Yet, I can still be friends with Real Libertarians, and since they do believe in freedom, they are cool with my point of view, too.

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site