If you head to the Libertarian Party website, one of the things you can click on at the top of the page is the Test to see what you political persuasion is and it calls itself the worlds smallest political quiz. I have taken the quiz several times over the years but it is only on a recent try that I honestly cold say I got a 100% result as being 100% libertarian. Try it for yourself. In any case it only has ten questions and take probably a minute to take if you’re a quick thinker. If you conscientiously answer each question truthfully you will find where you sit on things. As a little exercise for myself to further definite my views I thought I would give a short answer written out about why I picked what I did for each question.
1. Government should not censor speech, press, media or the internet – Agree. I have never liked it when the government gets involved with any form of controlling information. Even in time of war there should be the right to disagree with the war and write such without penalty. To be honest this is getting harder to do with the internet anyway but it should be clear I get very antsy around people who want to control information because such a person is someone who believes they can handle that information better than yourself or want to punish you for your opinion. The first step to totalitarianism is to try to control what people are informed of or restrict free speech.
2. Military service should be voluntary. There should be no draft – Agree. Yeah, I registered for selective service but to be honest I believe such things should be voluntary and honestly you get a better army with voluntary enlistment anyway. Pragmatic issues aside, there is no way the government should force people to fight for it. Have good and free government and people will line up around the block to fight for it.
3. There should be no laws regarding sex between for consenting adults – Agree. Honestly how is there a crime if both sides are consenting? It really is not the government’s business what people do in the bedroom and to be honest this cannot be stopped. If it does not hurt me or steal my stuff there really should be no law about it.
4. Repeal laws prohibiting adult possession and use of drugs – Agree. I may take some heat from my law enforcement friends but this is something that just needs to be done. The drug war has become as ineffectual as prohibition was in the 20s and 3os. The results are dead cops over bags of leafy material and powder and to me no amount of drugs seized is worth the life of a single cop that dies at the hands of the bad guys. More than that though the principle stated about still applies. A person doing drugs does not hurt me nor does it steal from me. To criminalize this is kind of stupid leading to stupid results.
5. There should be no national ID card – Agree. Some would argue that this would be Social Security cards and such but to me there is a greater privacy issue here where people have access in the government to my life based on this notion of a national ID card. The fact is the SS card and number are used to gain access to your personal information regularly. I always love discussions of people who claim a right to privacy and do see the fact their privacy is already compromised.
6. End corporate welfare. No government handouts to corporations. – Agree. I have always thought tis was a waste of money. Capitalism basically states if you cannot compete then you die as a corporation. Many of these corporations had they died would have been replaced by something else or if nothing replaced it then perhaps there was no longer a need the company was addressing. The question though if your going to help major corporations how is this fair to small business. This offers way too much chance of corruption and needs to be stopped.
7. End government barriers to international free trade. – Agree. I agree for two very practical reasons 1) mutual economic benefit is the quickest path to peace between two countries and 2) economic growth requires us to understand the economy globally anymore. By slamming up barriers we interfere with the free market’s ability to generate wealth.
8. Let people control their own retirement, privatize social security – Agree. This gets rid of the need for a national ID card for one and to be honest I feel most people would do better handling their own retirement. You might see corporations offering pensions again which were far more lucrative if we didn’t have this illusion that the government would take care of us in retirement.
9. Replace government welfare with private charity – Agree. Government welfare is the biggest bribe and control mechanism of certain politicians and it is supported by taxes that basically involve the immoral act of pointing the gun of government at certain people and forcing them to pay for someone else’s welfare when they might possibly have trouble paying for their own. This is forcing people to be charitable and it is a lousy system and an immoral one.
10. Cut taxes and government spending by 50% or more – Agree. I believe very strongly in a balanced budget amendment because what we should have is the government we can afford not the government we want to wantonly spend for. This becomes easier if you limit governments role to defense, equitable justice systems and true public goods. If that is all government did they would need far less money.
This of course creates an interesting issue for me. I am absolutely lined up with the Libertarian Party but I think their political savvy needs work and a clear direction. I also question whether they have a real chance to win in most elections. There does not seem to be an overall game plan and their idealism gets in the way. In order to diminish government you have to gain control of it. To gain control of government, you do have to be a little Machiavellian like it or not.
I could hold most of these views in the Republican Party but there would be some that would think my stance on the moral questions is soft. If there is one thing for sure about religious republicans is that they want to control people’s morality with the force of government and they don’t see this is actually no morally better than their opponent who want to control people’s economics with the same force of government. So Libertarian Party? Perhaps. This is something I need to think on further.