Students for Liberty
During the recent International Students for Liberty Conference (ISFLC), Alexander McCobin, Executive Director of Students for Liberty, weighed in on Glenn Beck’s recent shift toward libertarianism.
“I admit, it is difficult to counter this when staunch conservatives like Glenn Beck decide to start calling themselves libertarian,” McCobin said during his opening remarks. “But, if Glenn wants to call himself a libertarian, I am happy to accept him as one… on the condition…that he comes here, to our community, and proclaim ‘mea culpa’ for his past defenses of social and neo-conservatism in public policy and then take serious, public measures to undo the damage done by his offenses to liberty.”
Uniting the liberty movement is our namesake so we’re very much inclined to accept anyone who wishes to join us — and are ready to call them out on issues when they are wrong.
Beck recently responded to McCobin on air. “Whatever sins I have, do you not want someone who is honestly saying ‘I’m trying to learn?’” Beck asked, noting that Penn Jillette, for example, is teaching him about libertarianism.
Drew Martin gave his thoughts on this discussion today over at IVN, highlighting a very profound point that Beck made.
Beck said, “Libertarians, I’m begging you please, see the opportunity you have with about thirty percent of this nation; maybe sixty percent of this nation.”
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.
You have to hand it to Students For Liberty. Every day I look around and grow despondent, seeing the tyranny that is promoted endlessly, the ever increasing burden of regulations and dominion, the corruption, the wars, and most importantly the bald-faced stupidity of the public, and I think we’re doomed as a country. But then I take a wild gander at SFL’s website, and realize that there are thousands of young people—both in the United States and around the globe—who have recognized the real problems that are facing us as a society and are working towards fixing them.
Not only, then, are we growing as a movement, but we’re also growing in the youth area, meaning we’ll have long-term and sustainable growth. Perhaps their greatest product has been their book series, edited by Tom G. Palmer, beginning with the knockout The Economics of Freedom and continuing withThe Morality of Capitalism. Now, SFL and Palmer are tackling a subject that I think libertarians have really failed to address adequately so far, in the latest book, After The Welfare State.
It’s not ready yet, but I really look forward to reading it. The first two books were substantive and informative, though simple and relatively lightweight (though considering this movement, I’m pretty much comparing it to Hayek, Friedman, and Mises, so there is a low bar there.) But the reason I really want to peruse this volume is because welfarism is one of our most pernicious foes.
Students for Liberty have announced that their president, Alexander McCobin, will be introducing Senator Rand Paul (R-Ky.) this Thursday evening at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC). You may recall McCobin as the young man who praised the American Conservative Union for including the LGBT conservative group GOProud at CPAC 2010. He was followed on stage by Ryan Sorba, then chairman of the California Young Americans for Freedom, who made a total fool of himself speaking out against GOProud’s inclusion. Let’s go to the video:
Clark Ruper, who is the VP of Students for Liberty, has a very good point to make vis-a-vis the Occupy Wall Street movement (for once, the bolding is not mine!):
A lot of the discussion lately has focused on whether Occupy Wall Street (OWS) is good or bad for liberty, whether they favor more or less government, and similar questions. While these are valid questions to ask, it is important to consider how we insert ourselves into the conversation. The protesters have already framed the debate; it is them versus the corporate/political elite (99% vs 1%). We have to move within that framework and in doing so find the most useful way to get a libertarian message across.
When the topic is government and corporations abusing power, neither of the two institutions are righteous. Rather, all parties are wrong for various reasons. Don’t pick sides! Too often we libertarians find ourselves defending corporations in our attempts to defend free market capitalism. These are the vary same corporations that often fight for and benefit from eminent domain abuse, bailouts, special tax code loopholes, protective tariff and import quotas, licensing laws to keep out market competition, and a whole host of corporate welfare programs. The analysis of corporations being moral is overly simplistic. While there are many corporations that play fair, there are clearly many that abuse their power.
That last line is officially the understatement of the week.
Here is the debate: