More Real World Libertarian
While looking around the other night I was fortunate to find this. http://www.vitalpowers.com/caucus.html
It’s close to a namesake –The Real World Libertarian Caucus from which I quote in part: -
"Real World Libertarians are pragmatists. We believe that it is more important to get candidates elected to reduce the size of government than it is to maintain ideological purity. We believe that the LP will gain support from mainstream voters when we stop making our most radical proposals the centerpiece of our campaigns. Libertarianism combines the fiscal responsibility that the GOP pays lip service to with the personal choice and freedom that the Democrats claim to support. What other party will support tax cuts and oppose the Federal Marriage amendment?
Why are we here?
The Libertarian Party has been in existence for over 30 years. In that time we have managed to get ZERO federal level candidates elected, ZERO statewide candidates elected, and a negligible number of local candidates. Free market economics would dictate that if you’ve had a product for 30 years and no one has bought it, then you are facing one of three problems: 1) No one wants your product, 2) you face anti-competitive practices by your competitors, or 3) you have no clue how to sell your product. If you accept that the problem is the product, then you probably are not a member of the Libertarian Party. If you accept that the problem is the two major parties then the LP can never succeed and your only options are armed resistance or exile. However if you think that the problem with the LP has been the sales strategy it’s been pursuing over the past 30 years then you might be a Real World Libertarian."
I don’t agree with the idea of not maintaining ideological purity, I feel comfortable with, and support the statement as a whole. I think that while the purists are a nuisance, especially with demands for obscure and in the overall scheme of things, unimportant policies be placed in front of an uncomprehending public, they are a necessary evil.
Libertarianism is a valid political philosophy and as such will attract idealists; there is no getting away from this. While they tend to hamstring the pragmatists among us, who actually wish to get people elected to government, I feel that having a solid philosophical base behind us is on balance, advantageous.
However if they insist on arguing irrelevancies on obscure aspects of monetary policy etc. and slanging those out there, who are pushing real world politics, then we would be better off without them.
We have to get started, by getting representatives elected, and for that we need the Libertarian purists to settle for: -
1. Fiscal conservatism,
2. Social tolerance,
3. For Gods sake, no bloody pacifists,
4. Support for candidates from other parties who will push the above values.
Another article I ran across in the same vein was, clubtroppo.com.au/2007/04/19/libertarians-easier-to-wedge-than-lefties/, from which I quote: -
"I have in the past argued that Australian libertarians, including and in particular the Liberal Democratic Party, should focus on “low hanging fruit”. These are policies which are simple, effective and which would have wide and immediate impact in the life of most Australians. I consider the LDP’s 30/30 income tax plan to be an outstanding example of such an effort, and I think it’s exactly the sort of policy they should focus on come election time.
The other reason that I argue for the low hanging fruit approach is that I have lost my taste for grand sweeping changes. I have gone through Mises and Rothbard, Hayek and Friedman and others of their like and been presented with various encompassing visions of greater and lesser detail. Several of them are very compelling, and for each there are acolytes eager to push the line that they should be transitioned too as fast as possible, lest special interests seen them slain. For a time I agreed."
Worthwhile advice indeed, and while I could not agree with the ideas then pronounced, namely that Australian Libertarians should not oppose gun control, the above is worthy.
May 4, 2007
More Real World Libertarian