According to Ann Coulter, libertarians are “pussies” for wanting to end the war on (some) drugs and for agreeing with the Left on certain social issues such as gay marriage. Coulter was a guest on Stossel at the Students for Liberty Conference.
We’re living in a country that is 70-percent socailist, the government takes 60 percent of your money. They are taking care of your health care, of your pensions. They’re telling you who you can hire, what the regulations will be. And you want to suck up to your little liberal friends and say, ‘Oh, but we want to legalize pot.’ You know, if you were a little more manly you would tell the liberals what your position on employment discrimination is. How about that? But it’s always ‘We want to legalize pot.’
Liberals want to destroy the family so that you will have one loyalty and that is to the government.
I was sitting at home Saturday night and Stossel was on Fox Business Channel. I watched. What a shock! A libertarian watched Stossel!
However, I witnessed something I never would have thought I would see, and that was honesty from a pro-regulation lobbyist.
The segment in question was about a proposal which would require taxis in Washington D.C. to have a medallion system like New York. For the record, per Stossel’s segment, a NYC medallion costs around $1 million per pop. A lobbyist in favor of medallions in D.C. said on Stossel’s show that it was in fact about squeezing out the little guy.
Many of us who are anti-regulation cite how more regulations make it more difficult for the small operator to function. As a small business owner myself, I can tell you that more and more government regulations only make life more difficult. I am currently seeking two full time employees, but only because of a profound need. I would seek out four or five employees if it weren’t for the spectre of ObamaCare - to say nothing of other regulations out there - that could make my life even more difficult and thereby override the benefit of more employees.
The lobbyist’s candor, that the measure he proposed and that a D.C. councilman actually introduced was really about squeezing out the small businessman was unique. However, it’s not really a shock for many of the pro-liberty movement. It was a shock for me though.
While I will often cite the problems of regulations and how they impact the small businessman, I never really thought there was as much of a concerted effort to break the small businessman as there apparently is. Oh sure, I figured Walmart supported an employer mandate because it would hurt Target, but I didn’t really think they gave a damn about the mom and pop store.
Now, I have to step back and rethink that.
Is America moving in a libertarian direction? In his latest column - a review of The Declaration of Independents: How Libertarian Politics Can Fix What’s Wrong with America by Nick Gillespie and Matt Welch, George Will explains why we are moving away from government regulation and toward liberty:
Since 1970, per pupil real, inflation-adjusted spending has doubled and the teacher-pupil ratio has declined substantially. But math and reading scores are essentially unchanged, so we are spending much more to achieve the same results. America has the shortest school year in the industrial world, an academic calendar — speaking of nostalgia — suited to an America when children were needed on the farms and ranches in the late spring and early autumn. “No other industry,” Gillespie and Welch write, “still adheres to a calendar based on 19th-century agricultural cycles — even agriculture has given up that schedule.”
In the 1950s, A&P supermarkets (remember them? You probably don’t) had a 75 percent market share. What used to be the General Motors Building near Central Park South has an Apple store where the automobile showroom once was. When Kodak loses customers, it withers.
But when government fails, it expands even faster. This is, Gillespie and Welch say, because “politics is a lagging indicator of change,” a sector of top-down traditions increasingly out of step with today’s “bottom-up business and culture” of: “You want soy with that decaf mocha frappuccino?”
A generation that has grown up with the Internet “has essentially been raised libertarian,” swimming in markets, which are choices among competing alternatives.
John Stossel recently took up the unintended consequences caused by 10 promises made by politicians that allowed government to intervene in different aspects of society. Some of the targets are Cash for Clunkers, the minimum wage, publicly-funded sports stadiums, ObamaCare and ethanol subsidies.
The exchanges with supporters of these policies are great, especially when Stossel calls Wesley Clark, who lobbies for ethanol subsidies, a parasite.
Here is the full episode:
On his most recent show, John Stossel tackled the hot topic of immigration, bringing on both the proponents of Arizona’s immigration law (Heather MacDonald and Arizona state Sen. Russell Pearce) and supporters of open immigration and reform (Jason Riley, Nick Gillespie and Linda Chavez) and the economic benefits it brings:
On Thursday, John Stossel discussed the War on Drugs on his weekly show on the Fox Business Channel, taking on the “convential wisdom” of drug warriors.
In case you missed it, you can watch the episode below. It starts off with Stossel debating the drug war with the resident statist at Fox News, Sean Hannity.