Thursday, June 16, 2016


Political Mayhem Thursday: The Libertarian Party

Last week, IPLawGuy posted an interesting thought:

More and more this election reminds me of 2008. One party begrudgingly nominates a candidate who has been in the public eye since the 70's, been prominent since the 80's and has a long record of bipartisan cooperation and accomplishment. The other party nominates someone who is almost a blank slate when it comes to policy and political achievement. The only thing this candidate has done is make aspirational speeches. But this candidate has a positive theme. Really, what's difference between "Make America Great Again" and "Hope and Change"?

Just about every successful candidate had a positive theme that summarized their campaign. "Hope," "Bridge to the 21st Century," "It's the Economy Stupid," "Kinder, Gentler/No New Taxes," "Morning in America," "Are you Better Off Now than you were 4 Years Ago," "I'll Never Lie to you," etc.

I hate to say that sound bite politics matters, but it does. What's Hillary Clinton's THEME? The WHY that we should vote for her, as opposed to AGAINST Trump? That she's a woman? The people to whom that MATTERS would vote for just about any Democrat. That's not who she needs to attract. She needs to find something to get the undecideds in her column. And so far, I see nothing.

And as previously stated, my plan is to vote for Libertarian Gary Johnson.

Is the Gary Johnson/William Weld ticket for the Libertarian Party a worthwhile alternative? Certainly, they seem like the most reasonable folks at that convention:

There are some things about the Libertarian platform that many people (including me) find worthwhile. In the field I know about, criminal law, I really do think that the federal government has done too much, and grown too much self-perpetuating bureaucracy. But... getting rid of social security? Taking away nearly all limits on gun ownership and possession? That's going to be a much tougher sell.

I suspect that many votes for the Libertarians will be a protest, not an embrace.

What do you think?

Although some of the ideas presented in the party's platform are not problematic for me, the "close the barn door after the horse is gone" method of environmental protection is a non-starter. Individual property rights will not prevent irreversible environmental damage.
The Libertarian Party Platform is science fiction. So is the GOP's, and if Bernie Sanders had won the Democratic nomination, the Democrats' platform would have been equally ridiculous. The official Democratic Platform and Jimmy Carter's actual positions in 1976 and 1980 bore little resemblance to each other. And despite a lot of talk, Reagan, Bush and Bush did little to advance the "official" GOP position on a lot of issues.

Platforms are themes, not blueprints.

If Johnson actually won (he won't) he certainly would NOT have Libertarian Congress to work with. He'd have to cut deals. Which he and Weld both have a record of doing as Governors.
I agree with both of you. Desiree, it seems like no one is talking about environmental issues, other than an occasional mention of climate change.
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