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Why am I a Libertarian?

Libertarianism is a political philosophy. It states that individuals should be free to do whatever they wish as long as they do not infringe on the same rights of others. Basically, what business is it of the government what I say, read, do or take into my body as long as I do not harm another human being in this planet? The main principle of Libertarianism is the recognition that people have certain natural rights and that deprivation of these rights is corruption. Libertarians believe that governments’ sole purpose is to protect the rights of the people.
Libertarians strongly oppose any type of censorship. They also oppose laws restricting consensual behavior, and of course, laws on victimless crimes. Examples of victimless crimes would be prostitution, drug use, gambling, etc. Citizens should be free to take risks even to the point of harming themselves, as long as it harms no one else.
There are some points on which Libertarians differ, such as income tax. Some Libertarians oppose income tax and others see it as a necessary evil for the purpose of protecting civil liberties, crime prevention, and property rights. However, most oppose programs that are seen by many as beneficial, such as social security and the postal service. They feel it should be privatized. Libertarians believe that government should be limited to the defense of its citizens and nothing else. Actions such as murder, rape, robbery, theft, embezzlement, fraud, arson, kidnapping, battery, trespass, and pollution violate the rights of others, so government control of these actions would be seen as legitimate. Most Libertarians feel that there is some need for government to deter and punish these types of actions. However, government control of human activity should be limited to the function of protecting people and their property from criminal acts.
Some views of Libertarians agree with Democrats and some actually agree with Republicans. For example, most Libertarians oppose gun control, as do most republicans, but Libertarians support the legalization of prohibited drugs, as do some liberal Democrats. Some Libertarian views agree with neither republicans nor democrats. For example, on the issue of gay marriage, where as Democrats say yes and Republicans say no, Libertarians say government has no business in our love lives. Marriage should not be a legal institution.
Libertarians view government as both the cause and the effect of society’s ills. Restrictive government causes crime and prejudice because it robs people of their independence and frustrates initiative and creativity. Our government here in America creates problems by depriving individuals of their natural rights. Then they attempt to help by limiting more of our natural rights.
A Libertarian style government does require tolerance on the part of the individual. But that is better than tolerating government restriction and control. You don’t have to like what other people do, but to live in a country where you are truly free is far greater for our society in every way. It doesn’t matter if something is unpopular or if the majority considers it in bad taste, a truly free country would not outlaw it. Unpopular actions and speech is vital to the health of our nation. Freedom is not just about individual liberty it is also essential to the quest for truth and therefore beneficial to society as a whole.
Libertarians are a diverse group of people whose diversity can make the term hard to define. In spite of the diversity, they share the belief that everyone should be free to do as they choose, so long as they do not infringe upon the equal freedoms of others. Libertarianism is about liberty and justice for all.


The following comments are for "Legalize Freedom"

Nice to see
Glad to have a fellow Libertarian around the site, Baal. Politically, I'm a libertarian anarchist, only my libertarianism isn't rights-based. As you recognize, there's a lot of diversity among libertarians, which is as it ought to be, really.

I find that the 18-22-year-olds of today tend to find libertarianism completely alien. Many of them can't see the appeal of it at all, so when I'm trying to teach it, they have trouble understanding it. Partly, I think, this is because they have accepted the popular assumption that one must choose a "liberal" box or a "conservative" box, and simply can't think beyond that hopeless dichotomy.

But it's also, I think, because kids are raised to value freedom as an ideal only, never as a reality. It's something to kill people for, then reject.

( Posted by: viper9 [Member] On: November 28, 2006 )

My Useless Penny
What about the elderly? In Anarchaic terms, the elderly are left to fend for themselves. No collective government would leave helpless the weaker of the species. Even still, the young and immature, who would protect them? Anarchism boils down to the basic precept that the strongest will survive, using this line of reasoning is discompassionate and cruel. We need objective government to prevent harm to those that cannot fend for themselves. I once was misled to believe that I could survive in anarchy, like you I was wrong.

Libertarianism, I believe, has almost got it right. One big problem is democracy. Without diverse views people tend to be parochial and self-interested. The larger government, the more diverse and easily protected our rights can be. However, if government isn't stopped before becoming too diverse, we find ourselves teetering on anarchy. Our culter believes in compassion, anarchy doesn't even acknowledge it.

Democracy is as full of compassion as the people it is governed by. Democracy is philosophical as well. Democratic people believe in government of, by, and for the people. The challenges such goverment face are what size of people constitute a majority in order to rule and how much power should be given en masse.

The original 'dichotomy' (as Vipe pegged) of our United States was made up of those that believed in power of the several states individually and centralized government. The Democrats of the South once believed in Traditional law set up by the Aristocratic, Labor-thirsty and Land-hungry plantation owners. The Republicans of the Northern, Industrialized half of the country believed in statutory rule by elected officials. Of course, republicanism won via the means of a Civil War. However, to reconstruct the textile south, certain steps were taken to moderate the impact of such a vast and sweeping change. So America, as we know it today, is a balance between statutory and traditional laws protecting inalienable rights.

What inalienable rights are protected by outlawing prostitution? You guessed it, Women's Rights. Of course, I can't say objectively that I would discourage anyone from pursuing their dreams and opening up a fine business, but localized governments in local majority legislation elect not to have the fear of women being 'pimped' in their streets. But whose to say men should decide women's fate-they aren't. Fortunately, our elected officials have voted women into power, along with minorities, the handicapped, and elderly.

Drugs present an obvious danger, any intellectual can relate, or at least correlate, property crimes and victim-full crimes with careless drug users. You pot smokers aren't exempt. Marijuana is mostly smoked, which pollutes the air. In this article you label pollution laws as being as beneficial as Social Services. What gives?

Not being gay allows me to speak objectively about gay marriage. Secularly, marriage has no place. I agree with you whole-heartedly here. However, we do have to consider why marriage laws are in place. They are tools used by the government to encourage bi-lateral and unconditional love.

Obviously, marriage laws protect children. Protecting children guarantees our future. Developmentally, a child needs love from both a male and a female in order to grow up with an understanding and respect of both sexes. Over the past couple decades something has happened with the females raised only by other females (as in the case of the single mom homes), they grow-up without learning how to feel unconditional love towards a male. They learn only to express their feelings with males through sex, and are prone to 'prostitution' and sexual deviance. All because they never identified with both a Mother and Father.

A male raised by only males risks running the chances of ending up a female hater. At the very least, this kind of male will be unable to identify with the female half and lead a lonely life, should he be heterosexual. The difference lies within the chemical makeup of either sex. Of course, men are androgenous and very aggressive. Sexual frustration towards the opposite sex from males leads to sexual violence and severe, discompassionate consequences. However, outlawing marriage (of any form) doesn't solve this problem.

Opposite sex marriage is protected by not institutionalizing gay marriage. Of course, opposite sex marriage is no more a right than same sex. Niether is driving a car, raising children, polluting the air, or having sex for money. Their are laws regulating these things, but none of them are rights. According to the great and powerful undogg, no one but me should have anything, ever. Do you really want me out there doing as I choose?

( Posted by: undogg [Member] On: November 28, 2006 )

Man, that's just incoherent.

But I'm all for you out on the streets, spreadin' your word. ;)

( Posted by: viper9 [Member] On: November 28, 2006 )

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