I have some pretty strong Libertarian leaning principles that I try to live by. I am decidedly Conservative but understanding what the founders intended for this country to be can’t help but bring out the Libertarian in anyone. And it also shows how far off course we have gone. In so many areas we have traded liberty for a mostly false sense of security. And we will never get that liberty back.
I often exchange ideological words with my Libertarian friends. But the problem with almost all Libertarians is that they are not willing to go the distance with the Libertarian social policies. Most want drugs legalized and is probably what draws young people to the party in the first place. And while I agree that we ought to have the freedom to live our lives as we want, the line must be drawn when you encroach on the liberty of others.
Is a friend wanted to be free enough to use hard drugs, I really wouldn’t go out of my way to stop them. But should this person overdose, a true Libertarian would simply acknowledge the freedom and walk away. Unfortunately, when you use your freedom in a way that interferes with my freedom, you crossed a line. I would be unable to simply walk away and let you die. Humans are like that. I would have to take action and at that point, your freedom just ruined my day.
It’s like smoking. I don’t care if you smoke, I just don’t want to smell or breathe the fumes.
And if someone is irresponsible with their freedom to the point someone else must act, where is the liberty in that?
And the whole marriage “equality” issue, with most Libertarians supporting gay marriage is not very Libertarian, in my opinion. First, we already have marriage equality. Anyone is able to marry someone else of the opposite sex. those wanting same sex marriage are asking for a special liberty, not equality.
But the true Libertarian would only support government completely out of marriage decisions.
But the big issues I have with Libertarians is on foreign policy.
While their policy is often called isolationism, and that is not completely incorrect, the results of an American “hands-off” approach are beginning to show under Obama’s foreign policies of “leading from behind”.
Libertarians have a lot in common with Obama on foreign policy. At least it is accurate to say that Libertarians are closer to Obama’s foreign policy than Republicans are to either.
And America has been a bully on the world state for many decades. And we have spent untold treasure in both gold and lives in lands far away with no apparent relativity to life in the United States.
But America has always tried to be a benevolent bully, but we never learn when to stop. Mission creep and nation building are our weaknesses brought on by some egotistical desire on the part of the president at the time to leave a legacy or “be remembered”. Republicans seem to be addicted to expensive and lengthy wars and after-wars. While Democrats are addicted to making political gains by exploiting the war-weariness that nations always reach after wars stagnate.
Obama came into office believing that if America stopped being a bully the world would be at peace and they would all love the new, watered down America.
But what we have seen is that a benevolent bully, even one that does not know when to call a war over, serves to keep other bullies without an ounce of benevolence in their hearts from rising to the top.
Theodore Roosevelt advocated the “speak softly and carry a big stick” philosophy.
Many Republicans advocate a “talk smack and back it up with power” philosophy.
Barack Obama has gone to “run your mouth like you have diarrhea of the upper lip and carry a limp stick” philosophy.
And Libertarians plan to go with “ignore everyone and throw away the sticks” gambit.
Roosevelt’s idea was to not have to use the stick. Just let everyone know you had it and would use it. And project power.
And on the world stage, we either project power or weakness. And while Obama has been out playing golf and letting the world be to it’s own devices, the bullies have rushed in to the vacuum.
Putin is putting the USSR band back together. Iran is making nuclear bombs. Hamas, ISIS and every nation south of our border is exploiting the new wimp America. Obama’s limp stick is not making friends, it is providing an opening for the evil bullies of the world to grab power. And it has annoyed our friends as it emboldens our enemies.
And all of this is happening even as we continue to throw money offshore and provide assistance and even arms to avoid having to do the dirty work ourselves. And let’s not forget the Obama drones. They are just enough to piss the miscreants off but not enough to do any real good. But it does allow Obama and his press to pretend he is a tough guy and shut up some of the more hawkish voices. Or at least lower the voices.
But this has been a very eye opening adventure into less American foreign intervention. And Obama has confirmed my suspicion that less America in the world – as the Libertarians want – leads to a more hostile world and a less safe America.
And the truth be told, the full metal jacket approach of nation building and perpetual war does make America feared, hated and safer. But the expense is unsustainable.
We need to find a sweet spot somewhere in between the Libertarian isolationism and the dominance of the great war machine. Speak softly and then blow the suckers to hell if they continue to act against our interest. And then leave. Repeat as necessary.
I would rather live in a safe country that the rest of the world hates, respects and fears than in an unsafe one that become an easy target because we are a laughing stock.