So close, but yet so far

Some have told me that my politics are complicated.  I think that’s all a matter of perspective.  To me they are pretty simple: don’t hit, don’t steal – and don’t let others do it in your name.  Follow those two “rules” and we’ll get along just fine.
These aren’t positions I came up with all on my own – I am quite literally and figuratively standing on the shoulders of giants – they are some of the core tenets of  libertarianism (note the small l…this will become important later on).  The libertarian philosophy has more complicated names for these ideas (the nonagression principle and property rights), but the basic ideas are the same.
I am hesitant to call myself a libertarian, however, because of Libertarians(note the capital L).  “Cap L” Libertarians frequently run with Tea Partiers (or the Tea Partiers run with them) and others that love to wrap themselves in the banners of liberty and patriotism.  That’s all well and good, but I must admit that of all the various political groups out there, the Libertarians (and Tea Partiers) are the ones that most make me want to pull my hair our and scream.
Dealing with Liberals (which I think are mislabeled – they are more accurately called Progressives) is fairly easy – I interact with them like I would with children.  Children and progressives both live in a fantasy world where the laws of the world are suspended.  Just like with children, I listen to the ideals that liberals express, but ignore their impractical implementations.  Dealing with Conservatives (which I suppose are accurately named – since they are most often trying to conserve “the way things used to be”) is also equally easy – I interact with them as I would a elderly person.  The elderly and conservatives both have somewhat idealized views of the “good old days” and will bend anyone’s ear they can grab to tell then just how good they were.  Just like with the elderly, I let Conservatives say their piece, uninterrupted, and take the grains of wisdom they have accumulated and leave what they are idealizing – or omitting.
So that brings me to the Libertarians / Tea Partiers or LTP as I will refer to them from now on.  Yes, I know L and TP are in theory different, but in my experience they cause me equal irritation.  These are people that are familiar with the concepts of liberty.  They love the Gadsden flag (…”Don’t tread on me”…) and are able to quote the foundling fathers like a Pentecostal minister can quote Leviticus.  None of these things bother me in the slightest – in fact its what makes me want to hang out with them in the first place.
What drives me nuts is simple: they know the truth yet act in a way (usually) that is completely inconsistent with that truth.  They are able to list the evils and abuses of government from morning to night – citing example after example of how government has removed freedom and snuffed out liberty.  It’s all great to hear until they get to their proposed solution.  The LTP answer to bad government is, you guessed it, good government.  We just need to elect the right people to tell us what to do and then everything will be fine.  ARRRGHHH!!!!  How can they not see that having anyone tell you what to do, even if you want to do it, is the opposite of liberty.  Voting for the right people to rule you is the antithesis of the freedom that you seek.
Missing this fundamental inconsistency is the one thing that is holding the movement back, because it keeps them diverted from focusing on the real enemy of liberty.  The real enemy of freedom is not the “left” or “liberals” or “RINO republicans”. The real enemy are those that want to rule us – that want to tell us what to do.  By focusing on all these false enemies, we are in fact just playing into the hands of those that have decided they think they know better and have the “right” to rule – the true enemy.  The divine right of kings is alive and well – we just call it democracy and the rule of law these days.
I don’t want to be “that asshole” who gets a few things figured out and then dumps on everyone else who isn’t yet “so enlightened”, so if you happen to be reading this and are a supported of an LTP group, don’t read this as I don’t like you.  Honestly I think you are the best hope we have – but you have to get over one last hurdle.  I want you to get over that hurdle before I loose all my hair.
You have to stop looking outside yourself for answers.  You have to stop looking for a “great man” (or woman) to come in and say some magic words that will make everything better.  You have to decide what you really believe in: are you just mad at the conservatives and want them to be “more conservative” or are you a actually a libertarian (dare I say even a classical liberal?) who both wants and understands the conditions necessary for universal liberty?






Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *