Categorized | Opinion

5 Reasons Why the Libertarian Party Continues to Fail Miserably

While Mitch McConnell and the Republican Establishment may have succeeded in crushing the TEA Party, dragging Republicans voters further left and winning on a vacant and ambiguous platform, the Libertarian Party has simply crushed itself with its own detachment from the human experience of average Americans. Barely averaging 3% of the vote in local and state wide elections, the Libertarian Party continued its underwhelming consequence on the political landscape in an election cycle that pitted liberal, big-government Republicans, against what could only be characterized as a Marxist Democrat Party. Why such a poor showing in a year that should have favored our pro-liberty message?

First, Libertarian Candidates and the Libertarian Party continue to speak about politics in idealistic terms. This may explain why we seem more adept at pulling Democrat voters away from their establishment than winning over Constitutionalists and Conservatives from the embattled GOP. Ideals are not inspiring; at least not when it comes down to electing men and women to represent us in Congress. The people want real, pragmatic solutions to serious problems that have an objective effect on their own lives and on the lives of their families.

Second, Libertarian Candidates continue to pursue a conspiratorial resistance to border security and a strong foreign policy. You can, as I have attempted to demonstrate over the years, be for border security and a strong national defense, without playing into the hands of the Corporatists and benefactors of the Military Industrial Complex. We do not have to become isolationists in order to avoid making disastrous mistakes in our affairs overseas. Telling the American People that we will do nothing, if elected, does not inspire much confidence or hope, even if the Republicans and Democrats have little to offer in the way of sanity themselves.

Third, we continue to avoid a devout commitment to the Constitution and the Rule of Law. It seems inconceivable to me that the American Public seems unable to distinguish between a Libertarian and an Anarchist. We are not anarchists and we shouldn’t act like anarchists. Libertarians, in the mold of Harry Browne, believe in the Constitutional Republic and the principles upon which our Republic was founded. In this we have much more in common with Conservatives and Constitutionalists than we do with Democrats or anarcho-capitalists. In fact, as Libertarians, we ought to be able to define ourselves perfectly as Constitutional free-market Capitalists, because that’s what we are – but we are frightened of the word Capitalism, because the idiots in the Libertarian Party establishment can’t tell the difference between Capitalism and Corporatism.

Fourth, Libertarian candidates have been historically poor public speakers. We need a Libertarian Party that produces candidates able to clearly define themselves, their political philosophy, and where they stand compared to the Democrats and Republicans. We’ve seen too many shy, soft-spoken, ambiguous candidates, and we continue falling horribly short of the 10% of voters we need to be taken seriously by the establishments.

Fifth, we are too focused on drugs and prostitution. I believe in the legalization of drugs and prostitution, but are either of these issues a tenth as important as a plethora of more serious issues facing our country? Debt, NSA spying, IRS scandals, a Marxist EPA, decreased labor participation, increased regulation, a corrupt tax system, etc. I could tackle issue after issue, page after page, hour after hour, before ever getting to drugs or prostitution. We need to tackle the serious issues of the day if we want to be taken seriously.

I am extremely disappointed in the Libertarian Party, in our candidates, and in our strategists. Like the Republicans, we’ve seen the rise of the Democrat Party, and have moved Left – a move that has made both the Libertarian Party and the GOP, frankly, irrelevant. Every few years I raise the same concerns and no one in the LP is listening. So, if you are happy getting 2 or 3% of the vote every election, keep up the “good” work. If you really want to make a difference and have a real voice in American Politics, then I think its time that you, my fellow Libertarians, listen to what I’m saying. Even if you disagree, we can be damn sure that what you’ve been doing for the last sixteen years hasn’t worked. I don’t want to hurt your feelings or marginalize your hard work, but your strategy will never be effective.

About Steven Brodie Tucker

Graduated with a degree in Philosophy from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. Also studied economics and political science at George Mason.

18 Responses to “5 Reasons Why the Libertarian Party Continues to Fail Miserably”

  1. Janine Woods

    I lean Libertarian. I believe in free markets, & want the government to stay out of the way. However, I don’t agree with their views on foreign affairs, and our national security.

    I have been tempted to go to a Libertarian party meeting, but I got so hammered by the Libertarians online, that I just don’t want to deal with their aggression. It’s not appealing, nor is it winning my heart or mind. James Carr tried to address the wasted vote argument, but really gave a non answer. How is it not a wasted vote? The only way to change policies, is to actually be in office.

  2. InRussetShadows says:

    Libertarians fail because they do not understand human nature, and they don’t care about the social-spiritual ties that undergird most of life (like family, and life itself). That’s why the pro-abortion, open-borders, pro-prostitution combo is deadly — it reveals their ignorance or their dislike of things that are important to people. For instance, the US had even stronger laws against prostitution and pornography in 1784 than it does today, so the concept that liberty is incompatible with these positions is just a lie that libertarians tell themselves, and a lie that keeps them out of office.

  3. Steven Brodie Tucker

    Well, I think if the Libertarian Party would follow my advice, they’d have a much more important impact. But if people would rather live under big government, than deal with a free country that didn’t impose social values on everyone, then there’s really no point anyway. Hopefully Mitch McConnell gives you what you’re looking for.

  4. ele says:

    I just ran for a local seat. My platform was open government and adherence to the Constitution. How would I assist business? By getting out of their way. I promised to listen to the people, their concerns and possible solutions. Not just be a public servant who hears them when they step up, give their 3 min speech, Thank them and expect they sit down so the next “actor” can speak their part in the Kabuki Theater production of “open meetings and public participation”. Federal “carrots” mean nothing to me just as Federal threats. I lost to a GOPer who was 100% for government and never missed a chance to say in essence that it was there “to help you”. Even when the “government” came on your property without your permission doing whatever they were doing, it was for YOUR benefit. When he did mention the “people” or the Constitution it was as an after thought. I lost. Why? Because people are more comfortable voting for anyone with a “R” or when disgusted with that letter, a “D” after their name. “Act locally, think globally” or nationally. I live in a county with just over 3000 people, in a state with under a million. The Romans and Greeks felt that the people were too stupid to govern themselves. I think they are too stupid even to vote for those who will. “The argument that the two parties should represent opposed ideals and policies, one, perhaps, of the Right and the other of the Left, is a foolish idea acceptable only to doctrinaire and academic thinkers.” Carroll Quigley

    • Janine Woods

      Telling voters that they are too stupid to vote, is not going to win any votes.

    • Steven Tucker

      You can’t make people be free. The reality is, McConnell, McCain, and Boehner do represent the vast majority of Republican voters. Most Republicans want them in power and like the way they govern. Libertarians, conservatives, and constitutionalists just have to keep fighting until there is nothing left to fight for.

  5. ele says:

    I gave credit B4 the election to the voters who would do the right thing by voting for the Libertarians. All those I heard who were totally fed up with party politics of campaigning to the right and ruling to the left. My remark about voter lack of intelligence was analytical of the election results.

    • Well, for those of us who feel as though we have a grip on whats happening in Washington DC, it is difficult to watch the overwhelming majority of conservatives and constitutionalists who decided to support big government establishment Republicans. This has proven to the K Street and Wall Street crowds that they’ll have Republican Support no matter what they do, don’t do, say or don’t say. They’ll be even harder to fight against going forward. To be perfectly honest, I’m not sure there is much hope of a Reagan/TEA Party/Freedom Movement left amongst the Republicans. It may need to be a purely Libertarian Movement. We’ll see what happens. Politicians are hard to predict. McConnell and Boehner could right the ship and do a great job. You never know. You just have to vote and then see what happens.

  6. Robert Shannon

    Overlooked in this is the two main reasons that the whole effort to reform the federal government through the Patriot movements efforts may indeed be doomed. I won’t waste my time on the Democrats because Steve has correctly described that political party as a quasi-Marxist entity, which it correctly is .

    The republicans on the other hand are often afflicted by two very distinct and clear diseases. The first is the lack of intellectual honesty. Jerry Lund the former WRVA talk show host who recently passed away always spoke of this in clear political terms. Take for instance the claim to being the party of ” conservatives” While their may be some conservatives who still cling to the broken hope of republicans returning to their former philosophy of limited government and free markets, let’s take an intellectually honest look at todays reality.

    Seniors are perfectly content with allowing their grandchildren to pay a significant portion of their real health care costs, hence the embracing of the Prescription Drug Part D of Medicare. It is welfare by any other name. Wealthy farmers seem perfectly content with huge federal farm subsidies flowing into their pockets annually, even though the Cato Institute has documented that 74% of these subsidies go to farm households with annual incomes between $250,000 to 1 million dollars a year. Supporting the small family farmer is a myth. The subsidies continue to flow in exchange for their political support every election cycle. I cited weeks ago the 95% of Wittman Campaign signs all over the 1st District being on large tracts of farmland. Coincidence, hardly. It is welfare but somehow these same “conservative” farmers , these intellectually dishonest farmers are A-Okay so long as the taxpayer dough keeps flowing.

    Defense Department Contractors know in their hearts much of what the Congress does with defense spending is simply about providing Virginia jobs, regardless of the merit of the actual expenditure. I could go on and on but I think I’ve made my point.

    In all of the campaign did you ever hear Dave Brat call for the repeal of Part D, or call for an end to Federal Farm subsidies A.K.A Farm Welfare ? No you did not——so why not ?

    The second overlooked issue is the intellectual dishonesty of those who ignore the actual performance of the republican party in it’s governance. Gov’t has gotten bigger and bigger regardless of which party was at the helm. These phony conservatives ignore that fact, and the only explanation is they are so very stupid, or are caught up in the “we gotta win ” crowd, like it is some sort of athletic contest.

    Both parties have been effective at convincing their supporters of how important it is to WIN. But as I always ask these fools—just what did you really win ?

    Bob Shannon

  7. Freddy Boisseau says:

    I wanted to add my two cents regarding the problem that the Libertarian party has. The main problem I see with those that tend to run and speak for the party is wanting to get from point A (where we are today) to point C(where they believe we should be) without going through B(the steps necessary to get there). This is very evident in their push for legalization of drugs.But unfortunately there is a lot that needs to change in our society and laws to make that happen.

    Unlike the society our Founder lived in, our society has expanded government to take on the rolls, that society should be handling. Such as providing for those that have hit on hard times, or providing services to those that find themselves addicted to drugs. These services are paid for by the forcible removal of wealth from one party and giving it to another. This is because government is the force of the people unified, in it\’s simplest terms. These roles need to be returned back to society, before we can look at legalization of drugs, because society is the rest of the people’s (mostly good) attributes unified.

    Even in the areas that government’s force is needed to deal with the problems of drug abuse, our laws need to be reformed and adjusted to make them work better. For example we need to make it easier for government and family members to remove children from homes where they are suffering abuse and neglect, because of drug abuse. In my opinion and experience, too much leniency is given to the abuser in those cases, and that should be corrected.

    This problem of the Libertarian party is not limited to just the drug issue. The same problem exist in regards to national defense, border security

  8. Mr. Green Jeans says:

    As long as the LIbertarian Candidates in Virginia support Gay Marriage, legal marijuana, legal prostitution, open borders, legal internet pornography, and refuse to vaccinate their kids – the Baptists won’t vote for them.

    The Voters in the 7th District are seniors and Christians and if a candidate can’t get the Baptist Church Vote- he can’t WIN.

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Tom White Says:

Nothing is more conservative than a republican wanting to get their majority back. And nothing is more liberal than a republican WITH a majority.

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