What Do You Call A Republican Who Smokes Pot? A Libertarian.
As far as I can make out, Libertarians are just basically Republicans who are really for smaller government—no, like, REALLY—and who are unencumbered by the self-righteousness, love of telling others how to behave, and cosmic levels of hypocrisy found among the Religious Wrong. Libertarians talk a great game about personal liberty, about freedom, but really advocate an increased empowering of business and corporate interests at the expense of everything else.
The Libertarian Party is the third largest and fastest growing political party in the U.S. Its platform favors minimally, very minimally, regulated, laissez-faire markets, while tacking on an addendum of increased civil liberties.
What’s funny about this to me is that they don’t seem to realize just how much personal and private liberty would diminish if the corporate powers that be are allowed to run unchecked. Why, it would be just like things are now, only worse. Essentially, the state’s power and ability to serve as a regulatory and protective agency would be greatly reduced or even eliminated. In favor of what, though? Well, of business and corporate interests, of course. A vacuum is always filled.
Admittedly, this is the trajectory we’re on now, but why speed it up with a pretend philosophy of ‘liberty’?
Under Libertarianism, minimum wages would vanish and child labor would return. Instead of playing in the yard, little Tommy would be down at the factory earning a fair wage as determined entirely by the company he works for and without any input or support from anyone else. In other words, he would be earning a few nickels above slavery.
Protections for the environment would also vanish because, you know, they stand in the way of ‘freedom’. But what about me as an individual? What about my freedom to drink water that doesn’t poison me or breathe air that doesn’t sicken me? Too bad, so sad.
Businesses and corporations are already extremely powerful in the U.S. In fact, I would argue that at this point they rival the state itself. Increasing their power through radical deregulation will result in sure-fire corporate feudalism where the government is as toothless and symbolic as a Medieval king.
Don’t get me wrong. I do support many Libertarian ideas regarding personal freedom. If I want to smoke some pot, I should be able to. After all, it’s my home, lighter, lungs, and bong. The fact that marijuana is still illegal in this country is ridiculous. Everyone knows it, even you reading this. You just won’t admit it. The federal government flushes 7.7 billion dollars down the toilet every year battling the dreaded and quite pretty-to-look-at weed, resulting in unquestionable and utter failure. As an aside, you didn’t hear a word about that 7.7 billion dollars during the recent debt fiasco, did you? Nor did you hear about all of the subsidies given to the astronomically profitable oil industry by the federal government. Nope. All you heard was “How much money can we take away from the poor and needy without causing a riot?”
I even respect a lot of the Libertarians I know. They seem like honest Republicans, which is rare. They blessedly lack the empty god-talk while still doing everything in their power to force those in need to fend for themselves.
The reality of Libertarianism in America is that it is diametrically opposed liberty. It is the opposite of what it claims to be. It wants to remove the tyranny of the state, which is at least mitigated somewhat by the elective process, and give it over to private organizations who would then be completely unaccountable.
Libertarianism is simply anarchy for rich people—and rich people alone. Nothing more.