Posted by: irishhawk | October 25, 2010

The ‘Liberaltarian’ Cometh Once More

 

 Libertarian National Chairman Mark Hinkle appears to have conflated modern statist liberalism with libertariansim when it comes to matters of foreign policy.

Libertarian Defense Caucus National Co – Chairman, Mr. Kevin Bjornson, seeks to help Mr. Hinkle clear up any confusion in his response to a  ludicrously illogical LP ‘press’ relase.

Co – Chairman Bjornson’s  refutation is follwed by the original LP press release.

Dear Fellow Libertarians,
This is in response to Wes Benedict’s latest missive
concerning foreign policy (wherein he quotes himself,
referring to himself in the third person). The letter was
unsigned, which is odd. That would be like me writing
a controversial letter anonymously, quoting myself,
and claiming to speak for all libertarians. People might
accuse me of god-like pretensions (if I were to do the same).

Wes’ (or Mister X’s) letter points out the obvious; that if the LP
adopts categorical non-interventionism, we will tend to attract
more voters who favor non-interventionism. Since the Democrat
party leans more toward non-interventionism than the GOP
(or at least has that image), this LP strategy tends to siphon from
the Democrat base–thus helping elections of Republicans.

Left unexamined, is the premise that the LP has a duty to
help the GOP. Why should we help the party that is the
main force behind the anti-drugs war, and is about as
bad as Democrats on deficit spending? Why should we
help elect social conservatives?

Wes claims that Obama is spending a higher % of GDP on
military spending than Bush Jr. That maybe true, but is an
example of lying by statistics. Since the economy has shrunk,
military spending can rise as a relative %, while at the same time,
shrink in absolute terms. Let us hope our enemies feel pity for
the sorry state of our nation’s economy, and let up on their
attacks until our economy improves. Meanwhile, back in reality,
enemy attacks have increased (due to their cost-effective strategies
and increased oil prices).

If Wes’ first premise were true, that categorical non-interventionism
were a good policy, we should be running liber-hawks in order to siphon
votes from the GOP base, in order to help the election of Democrats.
But if his second premise were true, that Obama and the Democrats
were military spending hawks (more so than the Republicans),
this would contradict his third premise–that we should help elect
Republicans. In reality, all three Wes premises are factually false,
and internally inconsistent.

Thus Benedict and Hinkle have helped turn the LP into a madhouse.
But, let’s move on to look at the bigger picture.

Overthrowing of tyrants is a distinct and separate type of operation from
replacing them with “social democracy” or altruistic nation-building.
One can oppose the current occupation, without also opposing all
“interventions”.

The LP cannot logically be categorically anti-interventionist,
and also respect the US constitution. The US revolutionary war would
not have succeeded, absent French intervention. To oppose all interventions,
one would also have to oppose US entry into WWII. Tyrants would
have free reign to overthrow relatively free nations, picking them off
one at a time.

In any event, even if all US troops were withdrawn to within US borders,
Wes would still have them tax-supported. Likely under such a policy,
aggression would increase, and the cost of a war fought within US
borders would be much worse for the US economy/infrastructure–
than if we confronted our enemies in their foreign sanctuaries.
Instead of foreign civilian casualties, we would be hearing about
American civilian casualties.

The non-aggression principle does not require non-interventionism.
To “intervene” simply means, to take sides in a multi-party dispute.
Under categorical anti-interventionism, every person would have
to defend himself, and could not intervene to help others or seek
help for defense from others. Every man would be a defense island,
leading to a war of all against all.

Of course, brutes would not bind themselves to such a ridiculous principle,
and would be free to organize force against lone individuals (or by analogy,
against lone nations). The result would be a swift collapse of civilization,
and the reign of chaos and tyranny. To seriously propose either categorical
anti-interventionism or categorical interventionism, would be folly.
Every sane person is anti-war; but sometimes wars must be fought to
defend innocent life, liberty, and rightful property. Which Benedict and
Hinkle would know, if they had any idea of what a libertarian foreign
policy would look like.

Sincerely,
Kevin Bjornson
Libertarian Defense Caucus

Anti-war liberals can vote Libertarian

WASHINGTON – In the violent wake of President Obama’s military surge in Afghanistan, and his failure to withdraw the U.S. military from Iraq, the Libertarian Party (LP) says anti-war liberals can vote Libertarian with a clear conscience.

Sadly, President Obama is spending an even larger percentage of America’s money on the military than George W. Bush did. According to the tracking website usgovernmentspending.com, during the first two budget years of the Obama administration (FY 2010 and 2011), military spending is expected to be over 6 percent of GDP: a larger percentage of GDP than during any year of the Bush administration.

LP Chair Mark Hinkle commented, “Anti-war liberals who thought President Obama and the Democrats would reduce military spending and American interventionism have been betrayed.

“Liberals have also been betrayed by Obama’s unwillingness to reverse the serious civil liberties violations of the Bush administration. Obama has claimed the authority to kill American citizens overseas without indictment or trial. Even worse, he has claimed that ‘state secrets’ prevent his targets or their families from challenging him in court. Obama’s expansion of the ‘state secrets’ claim is a page taken right out of the neoconservative playbook.”

LP Executive Director Wes Benedict added, “In many ways, the Obama administration is looking like four more years of George W. Bush. A vote for Libertarians sends a message for peace and respect for the Constitution.”

Benedict continued, “It’s important to remember that many congressional Democrats voted for the PATRIOT Act, and many also voted for the War in Iraq. They tried to blame Bush later, even though they deserved just as much blame as Republicans.”

The Libertarian National Committee has passed resolutions calling for U.S. military withdrawal from Iraq and Afghanistan.

On September 12, 2001, the day after the major terrorist attacks, two-time Libertarian Party presidential nominee Harry Browne courageously spoke out against American interventionism. In his article he wrote, “When will we learn that we can’t allow our politicians to bully the world without someone bullying back eventually?”

Benedict said, “The Libertarian Party doesn’t have the resources to take the lead in organizing mass protests, but we like to join anti-war protests when we can find them. When George W. Bush was president, Democrats helped organize many anti-war protests. Now that Democrats are doing the war-making, protests are hard to find.

“I made an effort to express the Libertarian position at the One Nation March on October 2.

“The terrorists have tricked our government into massive overreaction, spending trillions of dollars and thousands of American lives to fight a small number of America-hating fanatics. Many thousands of innocent Muslims have been killed in the process. We have gotten bogged down trying to rebuild entire governments. Democrats and Republicans have both given in to this terrorist trickery. Libertarians, on the other hand, see through this trickery, and we would stop wasting lives and money on the disastrous policies of foreign interventionism.”

Liberal vs. conservative support

There is a myth frequently repeated in the media that Libertarian candidates take votes from conservatives. In reality, the situation is mixed: many polls show that Libertarian candidates actually receive greater support from liberals.

In this Kansas poll, the Libertarian candidates received more support from liberals than conservatives.

This poll showed North Carolina Libertarian candidate Michael Beitler with more support from liberals than conservatives.

Hinkle said, “Libertarians have a lot in common with liberals. In fact, people with a libertarian philosophy often call themselves ‘classical liberals,’ in the sense of the word as it was used historically. Libertarians sometimes describe themselves as ‘fiscally conservative and socially liberal.’

“We Libertarians have a saying that we’re ‘pro-choice on everything.’ We are uncompromising supporters of free speech. We completely oppose corporate welfare, and we hate the way big corporations often manipulate the government to get subsidies and protection from competition. And we are more immigration-friendly than either Republicans or Democrats.”

Disclaimer:

The views, opinions, positions or strategies expressed by the authors and those providing comments are theirs alone, and do not necessarily reflect the views, opinions, positions, policies, or strategies of The Libertarian Defense Caucus or any individual Caucus member thereof.

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