« Freakonomics Radio

259. Ten Signs You Might Be a Libertarian

2016-09-15 | 🔗

Gary Johnson, the Libertarian Party's presidential candidate, likes to say that most Americans are libertarians but don't know it yet. So why can't Libertarians (and other third parties) gain more political traction?

This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
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If you'd like to listen to free economic radio without ads the place to do that is sticker premium. Five dollars a month, and you can get a free month trial by going to stick your premium dot com and use a promo code freak you also get access. All our bonus, episodes and you'll be supporting our show too, but sticker premium, dot, com, promo code, freak thanks This year's presidential campaign has been pretty high profile. So, of course, you know which candidates are still in the running right I am your voice yeah. You know that guy believe. Anyone, who says alone can fix. It sure we know her to. But
can you name this guy? That is Gary Johnson and yes, he still Johnson is the libertarian parties nominee for president, and he does have a lot going for me- was a to term republican governor of Mexico must state the typically votes democratic, his vice potential running mate. William weld can make the same claim, but from Massachusetts, Johnson prior to politics was cesspool businessmen founding one of New Mexico's biggest construction companies he's an accomplished athlete he's got a lot of impressive action in an election year whose two main candidates, Heaven always been so impressive, Gary Johnson, has just one big problem. Right now. Sixty five percent of Americans don't even know that I exist today hamper economic theory
a conversation with very Johnson and maybe we'll get his non existent numbers down to sixty four percent. We also try to fix Why libertarians haven't gain more traction, either something wrong with the salesman of libertarian ideas or there's something wrong with the product or selling, and I suspect that it's a chunk of both we visit New Hampshire sight of a theoretical, libertarian take over we're firing, the starting a mass migration of freedom lovers to New Hampshire and Gary and tells us what would happen in the very, very, very, very unlikely event that he is elected president I would sign legislation that allowed for a self direction of Social Security Fund. I do advocates abolishing Department of Education, Department of Commerce, division of Housing and urban development, abolish income tax and corporate tax and replace all of it with one federal consumption tax but remember,
Very very, very, very, really from W and Y see studios? This is freak economics, radio, the podcast that explores the hidden side of everything. Here's your host Stevens Abner when we spoke with Gary Johnson, a few weeks ago it was before an appearance on MSNBC that, through his campaign into chaos, would you if you are elected about a level and what is Aleppo Aleppo is the city in Syria. That's the epicenter of that country, civil war and refugee crisis Johnson in his defence,
says he misunderstood the question he heard Aleppo as an acronym of some sort, not the city, but the mess up got people talking about Johnson's grasp of foreign affairs. At the time of our interview Johnson, was really liking his chances of becoming president I'll give myself thirty. Three percent chance of getting elected. Ok which she did a little bit right there. We took something up. Critical candidate said out of context. Imagine that here is the whole thing the Johnson said Well, I think it's getting into the presidential debates. I wouldn't put the odd said just over fifty percent there better than not
and were in the presidential debates out, give myself thirty three percent chance of getting elected, but Johnson has so far failed to get into the presidential debates. He hasn't met the threshold set by the commission on presidential debates of reaching fifteen percent across five national pulls the present, debate commission, which really overseas a rigged the game. What they won't say is is that Gary Johnson wasn't in any of these poles, so let's be realistic. Johnson's chain becoming president are pretty much. Neil same goes for or Green party candidate Jewels Stein, which isn't at all surprising american political history is littered with failed, third and third and half party campaigns. The libertarian party, founded in nineteen. Seventy one claims to be the third largest political party in the? U S, but that's not saying much in two thousand
twelve Johnson, also ran for president got more votes than any the criterion party candidate in history, one point two million, but in send its terms about one percent. The paradox at least as Gary Johnson sees it is that most Americans are libertarian, but, as he likes to say, they just don't know again. I think most Americans are about small government meaning keep government out of my pocket book. Keep government out of the bedroom. So I think most Americans are fiscally conservative. I think most Americans, when comes to social issues, really don't care what others are as long as as long as you, force. It on me and then really of an interval, but of being libertarianism is really takes
a stand against the intervening militarily to try and bring about regime changes. Then, in my I've time I can't think of one single regime change that has resulted in things being better and not worse, would you say, is the single most abusive or heavy handed thing? The? U S. Government does regularly. Would it be military action? Would it be it the way at taxes? Would it be the way it runs its education, transportation departments? What's the one you pick well, a government is force, I think that people dont really understand. Fundamentally, what government is that when it comes the taxes I mean that's so you know that they will force you to pay taxes when it comes to our military that is for said should be used judiciously. The war drugs.
Gonna say that the war on drugs has has resulted in them in absolute worst worst, human, a region says government can can conduct its citizenry of of any example in in my lifetime. Grievances, meaning imprisonment, meaning what well meaning getting arrested. Oftentimes incarcerated, but, along with the rest, oftentimes. No incarceration, Berta Felon He convictions are the fact that ten. Of millions of Americans are convicted felons in this country that, but for our Europe, laws would otherwise be taxpaying law. Abiding citizens know you're in ever of smart immigration, presumably administered by the federal government.
There are a number of institutions and agencies you'd like to do away with the Department of Education, for instance the IRS, perhaps a Federal Reserve Hut and so on. So let me just ask you in there of education, you'd like to give power over the schools to the state and local institutions, but why? If the federal government is enough to set immigration policy, why not education policy well education policy. Only people realise that its it it's not giving money to the states federal government takes. Money from the states and they give back less money than if the states just kept it in the first place, it's it's It's a negative is crazy. You know that you, U Base We give up six cents on every educational dollar you spend because of its bureau, wash and dry from the federal government. I am I it advocates eliminating income tax and corporate tax and am not on
Can you get elected the king or dictator? here there are constitutional limits to being present and I hope to be a good steward of the office. But that said, I beg you to either sign or veto what comes out of Congress, wave a magic wand. I will abolish: income tax and corporate tax and replace all but with one federal consumption tax, which I think would create tens of millions of jobs. I think I would issue pink slips to eighty percent of Washington lobbyists. I do advocated abolishing department of Education, Department of Commerce and the Department of Housing in a written development. Those are the three you know just are at the top
you're running May as VP is like you, a former republican governor. What does it say about the GEO P that its nominee is someone? The party itself seems to despise well two former report, Looking governors are running on the libertarian ticket. Well, I think the Jew appears lost its ways with its social conservative. Stand that their not being inclusive when it comes to their social conservative agenda and beak Is there not inclusive? I do believe that their turning off half of Republicans, I do. Believe that more than half of Republicans are Republicans because of small our government of less government interference in our lives, less spending by the government, but half the Republican Party right now this this, so
conservative dogma that I do believe turns most people off as much as the public and party may turn off some potentially like minded voters. The same could be about the libertarian point. Its share of misfits ideologues and eyeballs at this year's mention one candidate for party chair James weeks used. His bedtime on stage to perform a striptease, to be fair, the audience, didn't you preach. Nor did it approves, however, when during a debate, Gary Johnson said it's a good idea to require a driver's license for people who want to operate a motor vehicle I'd like to see some competency exhibited by people before they drive
on some political dimensions, Gary John isn't outside the mainstream at all on others, he sure, yes as good, of New Mexico. You liked to cut taxes you liked to balance the budget, you liked to veto lots and lots of legislation that you thought would be burdensome. What makes you think that that kind of behaviour would make you a suitable candidate for the presidency, because that's not the behaviour that typically associated least in recent history with the presidency. Well really applies to both me an bill, weld that what you're leaving out of that equation, as is that both of Scott elected as Republicans in heavily Democrats states, and you would think my having vetoed that much legislation that I would have gotten written out on a rail when, in fact they are real.
By a bigger margin, the second time than the first time in the same, applied to bill? Well, so I really Do you think that term, if trample or if Clinton are get elected. I think things are going to be more polarize than ever. I don't think anything will get done as opposed to arguably former republican governors as libertarians get elected that are gonna higher Republican his Democrats libertarians by partisan administration, I'm gonna be able to stand back and challenge both sides to come to the middle, to address the issues that do face. The country making the argument that that third scenario might just work, and I This is what you mean when you say that most Americans are libertarians, but they just don't know it yet. Would you consider that to some degree of failure of, I don't know what to
What branding by the Libertarian Party or the libertarian movement, no ice really that it so that it is a function of the two party system and just how exclusive it is, and just me right Sixty five percent of Americans don't even know that I exist and if they did, I think most of them would actually self identifies libertarian. So not not an issue of branding as much as as attention and clearly The libertarian party right now is growing leaps and bounds because of the attention and a course that has to do with. Arguably, the two most polarizing figures of all time and space and american politics top for just a moment about what happens to social security benefits when the beneficiary dies and in what you might do about that. While if you
so. First of all, I am not. I am advocating that we reform social security so, and I am not advocating cutting social security, but there does it to be some reform to social security. One would to raise the retirement age. Another that you could have a very fair means, testing means testing, should you get back more money than what you pay it into so security. Given a certain level of income, if you were to pray, the ties, social security in em back to king and dictator and president, so I just the sun. I just get to sign legislation that might be able to change this. I would sign legislation that allowed for a self direction of of social security funds. If you To do that you would actually be able to read.
Pain those funds and be able to pass them on to your airs, something that current it does not exist, were so security security die if you die at a young age, government gets whatever it is that you paid into that and it really it's it's just one of those untold middle. Ass, lower class. This is one of the biggest assets that a person has when they retire and if they die at a young age, they can't pass that that asked, at to their heirs, love to see some actuarial study or some legislation that might remedy. Also allow. Families to get ahead after you die yet when you rather just have that money privatized from the outset. Well, I don't think that's I don't think Congress I mean
being reality based and if that legislation were to get to my desk. Yes, I think that that would be a big improvement, but I dont think that the situation is gonna ever gets my desk, ok as agreed I will be based human who sound, pretty saying to me from what I can tell What is the one piece of legislation that, if you're not dependent on any one else it if you were to be the president, as king or the king as president, that you could, with the stroke of a pen, actually enact one piece of magical legislation. What would that one being would be a balanced budget? I think we are into a fiscal cliff unless we address the entitlements, Medicaid and medical care, as Since earlier so security eminently fixable, but reform to go along with that and cry. She can't balance federal budget, if you're not gonna, reduce sir military?
pending in the Pentagon itself says that twenty percent of- U S bases, could be a limit and yet there is not the political will to go along with that. So balanced The federal budget, I think, has very long term positive impact. On the economy. Jobs a bizarre wealth in this country going forward Do you find yourself attracted in whole or in part to Gary Johnson's positions If so, you are not alone, not quite at least at this moment the political forecasting website, five, thirty eight dot TK. Projects, the libertarian ticket, getting just under nine per cent of the popular vote, which would be the best third party, independent showing since Ross Pirogue at nineteen percent in eighteen. Eighty two and
I'm percent showing would be nine times better than Johnson's last campaign for years ago, but even that translate into one half of one percent of the electoral vote, so barring a cataclysm or a miracle, Gary Johnson is not going to be the next president of the United States so coming up on for economics, radio, what's a libertarian supposed to do to find some political satisfaction. Maybe libertarians could trigger libertarian state aid and if you wanna, hear passed for economics, radio episodes about politics, you might start with the two thousand twelve episode called. We. The people were one from just a few weeks back called ten ideas to make politics less rotten and get all our podcast for free
at free economic start com, the Itunes or, if you're, an Android. Her with apps like pocket, casts podcast, attic or stitches the libertarians as sensible as some of their positions may seem have not exactly one over the american people. Their absolute others are relatively small, roughly four hundred thousand registered voters nationally, but there also spread to thin to have any real impact and big elections. So what if they picked one state and persuaded thousands of like minded people to move there, even if they couldn't palatia, libertarian Utopia at least be one state, let's friendlier toward their ideas and where they might gain some political leverage. That is
What one group of libertarian minded activists is trying to do. The stately have chosen New Hampshire State Motto live free or die. We sent our senior producer Christopher Worth two. Just as you would find with Political party libertarians are a mixed bunch. You ve got your libertarian party Gary Johnson type Libertarians, who oppose foreign. Military interventions and went to abolish the Federal Reserve, and then you ve got those who, aren't members of the party or who don't even like being called libertarians, but do share a common cause in the advance of liberty. This is the inertia capitalist wing of the libertarian issue. The folks who dream of a world with no government whatsoever sides, basically society, where no one can have rule or authority over someone else that
Raoul Prato. Twenty six year old, biology student from LOS Angeles, He was learning to shoot a semi automatic rifle at a firing range in a forest in northern New Hampshire. I think it's just that tool to learn to respect and I fear, inefficient, with a tool you're not going how do you say you know if ever comes then gun rights are a big deal to a lot of libertarian types? Many of them believe personal protection is a responsibility that should not be left to the police alone, Prato had come all the way to New Hampshire, for, what's known as ports, that stored the Porcupine Freedom Festival, it's an annual, a week long gathering of roughly two thousand people at a camping ground in the mountains, Porthos is organised by the free state project which trying to persuade libertarians or libertarian minded people to move to New Hampshire. It's an enticing thought
Four Prato who believes his own home state of California has gone. We too far in curtailing his individual liberties. It's a nanny state, her eggs, nl aid. They about love, you know, and I that, I think even individual wants the middle class, rarely should think something in suits them. I've never should be able to decide what I think is best to store my guts. And so what's your plan now my planet, a graduate and get my degree within two years and move over here do some sort of teaching. If not openly a strong or something Prato is a first generation Mexican American and he says one thing he's noticed New Hampshire is the lack of Hispanics in and good mexican restaurants, I know how to make a pretty good destitute- and I think, would be a great place to you know. Expose people to see is a unique
yeah. I guess there's not a lot of minorities here and I'm on the associated about, but I see it as an opportunity in that's the kind of entrepreneurial thinking free Staters went to here, particularly this freedom, my name's Jason Sore and some Electra Dartmouth College and vice president of the free state project, saurians founded the free state project fifteen years ago, when he is a grad student at Yale. At the time he was acting research on secessionist movements. Any was for very disillusioned with the prospects of libertarianism in national politics. This was during the George W Bush administration in the depth of his despair. Swords proposed a solution and this is a quote here from his original statement of intent, published in two thousand one in which he envisioned free minded people of all stripes, establish residence in a small states and take over the state governments. Maybe libertarians could try to
have a libertarian state and we could use that position to try to as for more autonomy for the state and economic policies, criminal justice policies, things like that and created a freer society, saurians believed the libertarian state could even threatened secession to force Washington to meet its demands. Any figured that if the free state project could get twenty thousand people to sign a pledge to move to this hypothetical libertarian state, then everyone could move their on mass in I it's a tall order to get twenty thousand people to move to a particular state, a small state for an idea and I thought well probably won't happen- is worth a try, because no nothing else is working. In two thousand one swords wrote in the online publications. The libertarian enterprise quote twenty thousand hard core,
libertarian activist can go a long way in a small state, so he collaborated with other libertarians. They collected signatures and began casting about for a state suitable for this limit. Marion experiment. Even Gary Johnson got involved when the free state project within its formation, they came to New Mexico and I made them a pitch ass governor, but free staters ultimately chose New Hampshire, a because it small just one point: three million people spread out over a mere nine thousand or so square miles and be because the already leans in a direction that favourable to libertarian ideas. For simple while New Hampshire rights do pay property taxes, the state has no income or sales tax. Sure is distinct in that it combined fairly low taxes and fairly modest level of economic regulation, with a good bit of social. Alteration and personal freedom. His nose
He fell law for adults. Sturgis has a lot of different characteristics that make it a more libertarian state, then a lot of other states, maybe more than any other state. The free state project also lists the fact that New Hampshire has few restrictions on firearms. In addition to the no seatbelt law, adult motorcyclists, also warrant required to wear a helmet and New Hampshire State Constitution, doesn't have any specific prohibition on secession from the rest of the United States. These are all characteristics that libertarians like in earlier this year, a decade and a half. After the free state project was conceived. The organization finally announced its twenty thousand seiners here, saurians at the free state projects press conference back in February, This is a great day in the history of human freedom. It sounds grandiose, but I really believe it's true we're
starting a mass migration of freedom lovers to New Hampshire, the plan now sore and says, is to get those twenty thousand free staters to actually move to New Hampshire and do it within the next five years will be a tough left, but we ve got a lot more research It is now that I've been coming in financial resources now that we ve trigger the move and down we're going to keep getting people signed up, because we know that not all of those twenty thousand are going to move. So we're gonna try to sign up forty thousand people so that we can expect twenty thousand of those to move. I think we can do it soaring, a handful of wealthy individuals have recently joined the free state cause he wouldn't name them, but pork fast is sponsored by the Charles Coke Institute and the Americans for prosperity. It's a political advocacy group funded by the Cook brothers, longtime supporters of libertarian and conservative causes, and not all free staters have waited for the twenty thousand sign or to make the move soaring says. Nearly two thousand people have already
of two New Hampshire over the past decade, or so he and his family moved in two thousand and thirteen once he landed a job at Dartmouth located in Hanover New Hampshire, and he says the group has managed to establish a tight knit community here. When a member moves to the state. For example, a handful of free staters usually show up to help load their belongings. The concentration of Libertarians in New Hampshire is much higher than you'll find anywhere else. I you know on any given night, for I just a random sort of get together or meeting or whatever you'll get forty or fifty these data showing up- and you know you didn't get that in New York City for major annual event, probably so yeah we were having a big impact here and others. A lot going on and that that energizes people, a great thing about New Hampshire, is at all all types are welcome. Here, that's Mark warden of Porcupine. Real estate and realtor, who specializes in free state clientele warden himself, move from that in two thousand and seven
he's hiring more real estate agents to prepare for what he believes will be a major influx of free, staters, Garcia intent thirty miles moved to New Hampshire and I think it's great at their the libertarian realtor they can count on and they can trust to third countries a mark on be on thirty, there is not going to shoot amount property for example, or raise my own food, have chickens and grace have big gardens. I can be self reliant or maybe even live off. The grid, look at him like a crazy? They know that I, the same language and can help them find that kind of property that's going to meet their needs. Are you the delivery and real iter in New Hampshire, yes, private, libertarian Realtor United States and certainly for New Hampshire, so how many people you estimate you ve helped get into homes and help move to New Hampshire from other. Just unless, for years it's been over a hundred twenty five alms transactions in double that for the number of people several hundred among those people,
husband and wife from Louisiana Name Forest and Kelly. They didn't want to give their last names. They took the free state pledge fifteen years ago are now finally ready to move to New Hampshire. When I met them, they just made an offer on a property outside Manchester, it's a cabin with very for plan and its on ten acres in what what? What is it about moving to New Hampshire and if we say project libertarianism. What is it about here that appeals to you? Ah, it's kind of just knowing that you around people that kind of ideologically agree with you on a line with you, the people here they understand We owe our own bodies, and so everything stems from that and you have ownership of your own body or not. Are you a slave to the government? They own Europe action or not so my eye People here already believe that we want him move here and help them keep in Hampshire Awesome,
one big change in the freezer, Jack, since it got under way fifteen years ago Jason. Swords and other members no longer talk about taking over New Hampshire state governments. Nor do they advocate secession at least not openly. Saurians has grown more praying headache or maybe just more realistic. I really don't think we're going to end up with anything. It looks like a pure libertarian utopia or anything like that. I just don't think that exists on earth or ever could happen. That's just not the way societies work, but I do think we can make progress some lots of different margins where we have good answers that would help people achieve their ends. Take we are not new. Hampshire is something of an ideal state forgetting elected to office. Its house of Representatives is made up of four hundred members, which makes it among the country's largest legislative bodies again in a state with just one point: three million people. This means the barriers to entry in New Hampshire State power
takes are pretty low. The state house districts are very, very small, there's a state rap for every about three thousand five hundred people, and so I ve easy to get elected. If you put in the leg, work and state wraps a hundred dollars a year in New Hampshire and state Senator is make two hundred dollars a year. So there's no professional political class really and right now, my standing as it they're about eighteen free stay project movers who are in the state house, and in addition to that, there is a wider kind of libertarian caucus, so a sort of natives. Our friendly unto libertarian ideas of about eighty The slayers sets about twenty percent of the state House that is, roughly speaking libertarian. Most of the time. One of those free staters running for office this year is Karla Garrick, who move from New York into I am running for New Hampshire Senate and District twenty. It happens sort of.
Accidents, but I'm pretty exe about eight Garrick use up against the democratic incumbent who's been in the Senate for eighteen years. If elected Garrick would try to limit police powers, sheep into the purchase of armoured. Police vehicles should get rid of the EU. I check points which she believes are unconstitutional: me. The leg bottom line is America's moving towards a totalitarian, authoritarian police, state, I don't want that to happen, or at least not in New Hampshire and begin Garrick assures us. This is not about taking over the state When I take over, I want to keep New Hampshire awesome. But not everyone believes the free state project has abandoned its plans for government domination or secession will attack the answer. Came in Rollo is a former state representative, a Democrat, and you know if he had few folks moving too.
The town and then start running for office. You like, oh well, that's great, there's enthusiasts there's excitement that, when you find out while they want New Hampshire to secede from the union, that that's all extreme and kind of mixed people feel a little bit uncomfortable said Rollo, does not think free staters will actually get twenty thousand people to move dipping collecting signatures now, since it is, with New Hampshire as the intended states in two thousand and three. They just met that goal, and so you're talking about it a time period of thirteen years where people have been signing onto this Titian saying that, yes, you know if we get all these signatures, that I will move to New Hampshire, be part of our liberal Tokyo that we create whirl, have limited government, but that's a long period of time The free state project does acknowledge. It's been a long time. In fact, the contact, information for a lot of the people who signed up years ago, is no longer valid, but their spending more than three hundred thousand dollars this year to contact you. They can remain
but their oath, and let them know it's time to move that is Christopher Worth reporting from the free issue. State New Hampshire. It gives you the sense that the libertarian movement for all its enthusiasm doesn't exert much leverage in the political arena. True gear, Johnson, may get a much larger share of the vote for president this time round. But for a party that's been around for forty five years, it hasn't exactly captured the public's imagination. What does this tell you with me? Tells you, then the war of ideas you're losing your not willing at Jerry Taylor and the present. Then, the skin centre, which is a thing, take your Washington DC that a liberty, think tank per se are not quite it is indeed, and how would you define this cannons mission, we are engaged directly in the policy making process our audience are raw, though, is the policy a lead here in Washington DC and our job is to craft libertarian.
Random policy reforms and to promote the Monk Capitol Hill with the idea of actually trying to translate wishes and reality, Taylor does not a line himself with the free state projects or what he calls the more idiosyncratic sub groups in the Libertarian party its. Moreover, offshoot of its more fundamentalist wing, I suspect- and what does tell I think- of the libertarian police- a party. Well, I'm probably not the best person ass, because I've never been remember. The libertarian party is that right? Why that the american political system, essentially rigged a boot producer to party system its virtually impossible to imagine a world in which a third party could sustain itself over long period of time and become irrelevant political actor? So if you do the adventure, ideas and american politics you either have to advancing the Democratic Party or you have to advance them in the Republican Party. So that's how Taylor spends his days. Libertarians have spent a tremendous amount of time and energy. Since nineteen seventy from morning their ideas, and yet there is
indication that libertarian sentiment in this country is any larger today than it was. Then there is no real, clear evidence: between ideas are penetrating and academia amongst intellectuals to a greater extent than they ever have been in the past. The reality is that in politics, libertarianism has They stay market test in lost repeatedly, and I think this is an important bit information for libertarians who believe in markets and functionality of markets to face up to the fact that libertarian ideas have failed to very important market test and political market test intellectual I could tell so either there's something wrong with the salesman of libertarian ideas or there's something wrong with the product or selling, and I suspect that it, sir, it's a chunk of both consider, for example, the potential risks associated with
climate change? We think that libertarians going down the wrong road on this issue, how you feel about the role of government or individual liberty has nothing to do with how you should feel about atmospheric physics. The reality is that the key but is changing that change is being driven by industrial emissions and that impose his wrists, and this is a straight up. Risk management exercise and the best means of addressing this risk, in our opinion, is to price carbon and hardest, market actors and price signals to sort out when, where and how to reduce emissions. Rather than have regulators and the EPA do that. You think that's a pretty for, market position, but is one that suitable heterodox in my committee. This is a position, to which Taylor himself is a convert. He used to work at the Cato Institute, a more established, libertarian, think tank over the course of that twenty odd years bandit Cato and stood, I move from climate sceptics and opponents,
You are climate action to someone who embraced the same. Here's Taylor before the conversion bombing has almost as many, if not more benefits than downside these are not monumental problems there outside our ability to were handled as they arise, lost faith in the scientific narratives, that we were offering to resist climate action, also lost faith in the economic arguments against action. If you look at look opinion surveys of the libertarian voter to the extent to which they exist. You find, for instance, that days port action to address climate change at a higher rates the bridge any other ideological, so driving United States but their opinions. I represent a very well by the institutional voices libertarianism. I have to say for someone who runs a libertarian, think tank. You don't sound like you're, very fond of libertarians. Well, I think,
that. Unfortunately, a lot of libertarians are rather dogmatic about their ideas and rather absolutist and that they are not really necessarily in the persuasion. Businesses much matches it might need to be, and their more in the this, I shall believe in Christ on across kind of business, and if you want to move people into your camp, you have to persuade them, which means that you have to except the values and the underlying sediments the people you're trying to persuade you have to understand their arguments, and you have to make it a compelling case and Fortunately, if anybody saw several libertarian National convention recently This is why some of that sum that were that's out of persuasion later that something else, but it's not about sweet romance. People into your gap. As reality tv goes, it was pretty remember just now. I have to say yeah. Well I mean it can be a pretty entertain blaze,
The government requires that licences to get married. They require a licence to drive. What's next requiring a licence to make toast in your own, damn toaster absent only nine, We read you a fairly short list of topics and give me the stand bird or what you see is the standard, libertarian position on the following issues. So, first, while the size and role of the federal government probably cut by ninety percent, what survives Diana libertarian position is that we need a military that is capable of defending the continental shorelines of the United States from foreign intrusion, which would imply a far less military presence than we have. We would be disengage. For a more global alliances and bases in Europe and what not, since we're always interested The security of our own nation, no other nation,
and welfare disappears and public expenditures are, for the most part the disappear on. You know you name it all the government This has a court system, it has a police force and it S. So a few rules, the road here they are, but otherwise government goes back to the levels. It was before the progressive era, which was very very small, said permanent education, gone department, transportation, guy, labour regulations gone minimal wages, gone, OSHA regulations, gone antitrust operations disappear, the economy becomes a real, lousy, fair operation, internal revenue service gone well. Somebody has to pay even minimal bills, but I think most libertarians would oppose income taxes to do so. What kind of tat station Gimme again the standard position on taxation generally them. Why think its a bit confused?
the means for a lot of libertarians. They will pull out their chests and say. Taxation is theft of taxation is theft and there is no legitimate way of funding, but even these minimal responsibilities. The government except save bake sales, or something like that as a political, pragmatist, Jerry Taylor finds himself wishing the established politicians were sympathetic to libertarian ideas, would borrow some of that pragmatism. Lake Rand, the libertarian, leaning republican senator early, in this year's campaign was seen as a viable presidential contender. Paul has opposed part of the Civil Rights ACT of nineteen sixty four. They require private bit to serve any and all customers requiring a southern lunch counter, for instance, to serve african Americans. Here's Paul on MSNBC in two thousand ten,
there's ten different titles. You know to the Civil Rights ACT and nine out of ten deal with public institutions, and I am absolutely in favour of one deals with private institutions and had I been around, I would try to modify that. No one could compel I want to say anything well believe in freedom of association. I was against Jim Crow but I am also against telling people who they have to do business with. Well you just we needed pretty much. Ninety five percent of America. With that statement, what libertarians believe is that the rights to life, liberty, improper, the fundamental objectives of the federal government and it was put here only to ensure those rights so most libertarian. This would oppose welfare. They would oppose that wealth transfers of most kinds. They would oppose interventions in the economy to make the market more efficient, because none of these things have to do with protecting rights too life, liberty and property, so libertarians, as their generally understood today, basin
behold a position that, in an ideal world Buddha, rewind the clock, probably right before the progressive era are not at all cases there, been some advances since then. That libertarians were applied by liberal, of a fairly radical view of the sort of changes that are necessary to secure individual liberty and the original design of the constitution. So, for instance, Friedrich, because one of the great champions of libertarianism in the United States Friedrich supporting welfare programmes, supported wealth transfer, so did Milton Friedman, one of the most influential libertarians of our of our time. They also supported public parks and they supported public arts- and it turns out that for terrorism at one point in still from the number different voices simply represents. Liberalism, as we understand it, with a healthy respect for the individual that is sometimes lacking in other liberals, I guess, if you give that version of liberal terrorism, then you're having to rely on an older definition of liberalism is well, though almost aren't you,
as you know, I mean, for instance, a couple of people. I have a pretty high regard for nickel lesbian mouthwash over reason magazine, which is the probably the most prominently carrying journal, the United States, they argued that we have more individual liberties and freedom today than either time in human history in this is a tremendous indicator of the libertarian moment. They talk about now interesting there to a large extent, their correct on the other hand, is an interesting that all of this individual liberty that they celebrate was delivered by a rather aggressive federal government. And a very mixed economy, and yet it turns out that guy For me it is not necessarily an enemy. Liberty? Oftentimes is unnecessary, facilitator of liberty, so, for instance, we have governed restricting our rights and Freedom of association right they tell white restaurant tours. They can't keep blacks off a lunch cover most
a lot of libertarians conserve editor a violation of individual liberty, but are we freer as a whole? Because of that absolutely we are, and it turns out that out of libertarian instinct, which is to think that, to be a very extensive government expense it's got a liberty. Retreats is not necessarily correct Jerry Taylor. For his part, will trying to sort out the most useful, libertarian ideas, and rather than support, idiosyncratic subgroups lost political causes? Who try to feed those ideas into the two main pillars, the parties for the most part, the Libertarian party, is trying to undertake the impossible which, to be a viable third contender and It is a quixotic game it. Also very difficult, because the libertarian Party for anybody's paid a whole lot of attention to it very, very conflicted, a set of opinions about what its mission really is? Most political parties there put on
For one thing, the when elections are that's what a political party does right, it's trying to win an election but moratorium party, putting forward The arguments in candidates who are capable of winning elections oftentimes creates an uproar because there's people who violate some really deep fundamental principles of the libertarian order. And so Gary Johnson France was what do you mean by that meaning in order to be electable, you can't be truly libertarian wash em. If you re here, if you want to run campaign based on abolishing civil right, their civil rights ACT and abolishing all welfare and for some libertarians eliminating rules about sexual age of consent and issues like that you're, just putting your head Political with cheaper? So if Gary Johnson and Bill world want to try to take advantage of the opportunity presently haven't american politics and offer something that could actually get votes, which might be not conversely, cute about these matters, but a gamblers, about taxes and spending, and things like that. Well, you get a taste of
happens, libertarian faithful, rebalance you're selling out the party, and that's what happened. You will recall we Gary Johnson suggested to the libertarian party, faithful that it's ok for the government to require driver's license. I'd like to see some competency exhibited by people before they drive I was curious how Johnson feels about his place in the libertarian firmament Now, let me ask you this. There are a lot of different kinds of libertarians. As you well know, some of them are. We shall say a little outrageous. The party convention this year, where you were nominated, was it a bit of a freak show. Are you have? embarrassed to be part of the libertarian party. No I'm not- and I don't want to- I don't want to say that the Libertarian Party has a has a corner on the free market. If you ve been
the republican convention, if you ve been of a democratic convention and I didn't get the nomination along with bill world, so I am the officials this person. I guess, but a libertarian party and I like to think that nothing is coming up. That's coming out of my mouth is good, it denoted as freakish. We do know that a third party candidate country votes from the other candidates. Can you imagine a scenario where you might worry that you are votes were pulling from the candidate that you would prefer and where you would drop out. Is that not a possibility, not a possibility? lose no sleep over ruining their sad to party oligopoly our eye. I thank you I much. I wish you all. The best rural same here
coming up next week on economics, radio, we follow up with something Gary Johnson spoke of in Tunisia in I'm, not gonna get elected the king. Or dictator. Here there are constitutional limits to being president, but what happens when students ignore those limits which they do astonishing regularity yards. Steel in it an interesting leave its one, the people. Often don't really understand what would the founders think? Oh, it's! The founders could not possibly have imagined that the president would become as powerful as he has and aside from ego, why do president's so often break the rules. The wall actually prevents president's from doing great things that it shows the problem. Do you have to be a lawbreaker to be a good president, its next time and freedom?
radio frigates radio is produced by W and my c studios and W productions. This episode was produced by Christopher Worth. Our staff also includes ervic Ganja Jake, how it merit Jacob Gregg resolve Ski Kate Pierce Alison, Hockenberry, Emma Morgenstern and Harry Huggins. Remember you can subscribe to freedom let's radio, on Itunes or wherever you get your punk ass. You can also visit for economics, dot, com or you'll find our entire podcast archive, including a complete transcript of every episode of ever made along with music
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Transcript generated on 2021-01-25.