In a recent column in this month’s issue of National Review (which I still read, due to a complimentary subscribtion, despite my anger with the tossing aside of Christopher Buckley for his audacious Obama endorsement) the eloquent Mark Steyn argues for citizens who give little more than “stilted cheers” for their political leadership. He illustrates the Soviet-style cult following that Barack Obama has benefited greatly from as being counter to the ideals America was founded on.
Tax Hike Mike is back in the news:
Mike Huckabee is using his new book, out this week, to settle a few scores, not the least of which is with his fierce primary rival, Mitt Romney. Per Michael Scherer, Huckabee picks up where he left off earlier this year, tweaking Romney as a rich guy and firing what may be the first shots of the 2012 primary. Romney, Huckabee, writes, was “anything but conservative until he changed the light bulbs in his chandelier in time to run for president.”
In last week’s article titled “Problems of the Republican Party”, I discussed some key policy mistakes the modern day Republican Party has made over the last quarter of a century. The problems are deep and quite fundamental, as I mentioned before, but with some significant reform and a bit of policial realignment it is possible for the Republican Party to regain the prestige it once had. For the voices within the party that stand for reason and liberty, this battle will be very slow and may never be won, but finding and implementing solutions to fix the myriad of problems the party faces is a worthy cause.
I have previously argued that we as libertarians should target our appeal to centrists. Libertarians and centrists share many characteristics, mainly the common value of independence and the rejection of the Republican and Democratic ideological orthodoxies as presented. Furthermore, the center has quite clearly been the electoral kingmaker in recent history, so the political advancement of libertarians depends significantly on their success in winning centrist votes.
As part of my contribution to United Liberty, I plan to write an ongoing column called “The Change Gauge.”
The purpose of the column will be straightforward: to systematically highlight instances where Obama administration policies are not changes from the status quo, but rather “more of the same.”
While I have little doubt that President Obama will support many policies that differ from those of the Bush administration, I think it’s valuable for readers – liberal, conservative, and libertarian alike – to be aware of policies that harmfully perpetuate the status quo.
Over the past 48 hours, I’ve been wrestling with myself over which way to go in the runoff for the Georgia Senate race. In case you don’t know. The Libertarian Party candidate, Allen Buckley, was the difference in the race. He may make an endorsement in the race, but it’s unclear which way he’ll go.
Essentially, this is a runoff between two big government candidates. One has consistently lied about his record while claiming to be a small government conservative. The other is a progressive who has a decent stance on civil liberties issues.
Libertarians constantly face the preeminent struggle to form and implement strategies to gain political relevance. The party has never achieved a result better than 1% on a Presidential Election. Adding to our frustration is the failure of the Libertarian Party to capitalize on the opportunity Ron Paul’s groundbreaking Republican Primary campaign, which gained new ground for the libertarian philosophy in terms of visibility. Bob Barr’s campaign failed to crack 500,000 votes in an election cycle in which Ron Paul earned more than 1 million votes in Republican primaries and caucuses.
Barack Obama’s election as President didn’t come as a surprise to any of us. There was only one path to victory for the Republican ticket and it hinged on Pennsylvania turning red, a task not done since 1988. Despite the smiling faces and forced optimism conveyed by the McCain campaign, we all knew what was going to happen Tuesday night. However, Tuesday’s results are not as bad as they might seem, the era of Obama will not have the long term effect that many have predict it will, and the liberty movement will not suffer a dramatic setback as a result of this new wave of Democratic leadership.
It seems that the wholesale libertarian message doesn’t resonate with the American people. Many liberal Democrats love civil liberties and liberal groups such as the ACLU have been powerful forces for advancing same-sex marriage rights, prisoner rights, free speech and religious freedom. Conservative Republicans don’t so much like the whole civil liberties thing, and, given their blatant corporate advocacy, are no longer legitimate advocates of economic freedom.
Now that I have alienated all of the conservatives that read my articles, it is only fair that I explain how I should not be classified as a liberal either. I made my case for most of the tenets of liberalism I support in part one, so let’s see how I stack up against “the other side.”