Libertarianism a myth or a viable system for government?

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by Happybunny, Sep 1, 2013.

  1. Happybunny macrumors 68000

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    #1
    Libertarianism is it just a system that can work only in the realms of theory?
    I think that I am right when I state that it has never been tried in the real world, and on a large scale.
    I mean if it's such a fantastic system for running a country/state/city you would have thought somebody would have tried it by now.
    I mean in the 4000 years of recorded human history we have had some pretty strange forms of government, but no Libertarianism, I wonder why?
    I for one have very serious doubts whether it could every be put into practice. It always seems to me, to be a theory that was thought up over far to much alcohol, because faced with the cold light of day (ie reality) it just fades away like a bad dream.;)

    After more than 41 years as a political party in the USA, it is still less 400,000 registered membership.:p
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Libertarian_Party_(United_States)
     
  2. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

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    #2
    Without the "threat of violence" to enforce its decisions and underwrite its contracts, it is nothing but a hollow joke.
     
  3. Bug-Creator macrumors 6502

    Bug-Creator

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    #3
    Libertarianism just like communism are theoretic forms of goverment that work perfectly in a perfect world where the vast majority of the population are "positive good". Read they do not only aggree on the common good but they will also aggresivly stand up to anyone going against the common good. (note "aggresive" doesn not mean violence in this context).

    Problem is in real world you have like:
    - 10% positive good
    - 10% "bad" (people who will outright missue/corrupt the system for their own selfish needs)
    - 80% negative good (people who will just fall in line but will simply ignore all bad as long as it doesn't directly concern them).

    Sidenote, facism as a form of goverment relies on those 80% and so does any armed force.
     
  4. Huntn macrumors G5

    Huntn

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    #4
    I'm not an expert on Libertarianism, but I get the feeling there is Libertarian Light vs Libertarian Hardcore. I don't believe that any reasonable system, does not place your individual liberty to discriminate, based on prejudices above individual members of societies right to a civil level playing field. I'm speaking of denying service to people based on race, gender, or religious leanings. I like picking on Rand Paul because he is a self described Libertarian whose views IMO are inconsistent with a fair and orderly society.

    And why should anyone have an individual right to discriminate based on prejudice? For clarification, I'm not talking about who you decide to invite into your house or have as a friend. I believe Paul's position is that if you want to hang a sign on your store that says "No Latinos" it should be your right to do so.

    2010 Washington Post link
     
  5. zioxide macrumors 603

    zioxide

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    #5
    The other current thread in this forum is proof enough that libertarian is a utopian fantasy world concept that would never work in the real world.

    Seriously, how are you supposed to have a society without roads, electricity, communication, public transportation, fire, police, paramedics, etc etc?
     
  6. Michael Goff macrumors G3

    Michael Goff

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    #6
    They're argue that the private system could do it better....
     
  7. zioxide macrumors 603

    zioxide

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    #7
    But the private system is only going to work if you make everyone pay for it anyways. Which essentially means it ends up being the same thing as the public system, expect costs will increase because the private company has to make profit.

    Pay as you go fire departments won't work. And you would have toll booths at every intersection for every single road?
     
  8. Michael Goff macrumors G3

    Michael Goff

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    #8
    I didn't say I agreed with it.

    I just said that's what they'd say.
     
  9. G51989 macrumors 68030

    G51989

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    #9
    Complete myth. No civilization in written Human history with a " Libertarian " system has existed.
     
  10. Dmunjal macrumors 65816

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    #10
    Sounds like there is some confusion about what Libertarianism is. It doesn't mean anarchy. Most of the current public discussion around this topic is that the Federal Government needs to be more libertarian and allow the states and local governments to perform most governmental activities. I think this was the purpose of the enumerated powers in the US Constitution.

    It seems to me many are using extreme examples to justify a position.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reductio_ad_absurdum

    Unfortunately, all sides do this. Like when Republicans call Obama a socialist.

    Doesn't really add to the discussion.
     
  11. citizenzen macrumors 65816

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    #11
    There are members here currently (and in the recent past) who have argued the extreme position.
     
  12. mrkramer macrumors 603

    mrkramer

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    #12
    The problem with that is that you are essentially saying that we should break the US up into 50 different countries, and why would states be inherently better at governing than the federal government?.

    If you don't have a strong federal government to hold them together that is what will happen. The closest thing to a libertarian government that has been tried as far as I am aware is the US under the articles of confederation, and that failed miserably and had to be replaced after only a few years.
     
  13. Dmunjal macrumors 65816

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    #13
    The extreme position of no government? That's anarchy and not representative of what Libertarianism is. They give libertarians a bad name just as the current incarnation of the Tea Party, which advocates extreme social conservative policies, has done. They should be called out for it.

    Many libertarians are socially liberal, fiscally conservative, and want a less aggressive foreign policy. Interestingly, only the libertarians are against the war in Syria. Most Democrats and Republicans will approve this war just like the last one.
     
  14. Michael Goff macrumors G3

    Michael Goff

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    #14
    Proof to back up the Syria claim?
     
  15. zioxide macrumors 603

    zioxide

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    #15
    No, I understand perfectly what real libertarianism is.

    That's not libertarianism. That's still the same basic form of government we have now, just scaled back a bit on the federal level.

    And that would be fine for cases where the local and state government can provide services better, but it won't fly when states or localities want to use the guise of "states rights" to deny civil rights to portions of the population.
     
  16. Dmunjal macrumors 65816

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    #16
    I said "will." That's a prediction of how Congress will vote in the coming weeks.
     
  17. Happybunny thread starter macrumors 68000

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    #17
    I must say that mostly the people who normally drone on about Libertarianism, on this forum are true believers of Atlas Shrugged written by Any Rand.
     
  18. Michael Goff macrumors G3

    Michael Goff

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    #18
    Wait, we have libertarians in Congress? :O
     
  19. jnpy!$4g3cwk macrumors 65816

    jnpy!$4g3cwk

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    #19
    I try to stay out of this endless loop, but, this is what always seems to draw me back. There is logically no difference whatsoever between a coercive Federal government, and, a foreign-policy-national-defense-only Federal government and 13-50 coercive state governments.

    I seem to recall, and would have concluded anyway, that you are too young to have personally experienced coercive states in the South telling people where they could sit on the bus. "States Rights", to me, means more government intrusion, not less. I categorically reject your "be more libertarian and allow the states and local governments ..." etc. "States Rights" == more state and local government intrusion into people's private lives and liberties.


    I know exactly what you are saying, but, most "Libertarian" politicians, like Ron Paul, are not very libertarian anyway. They want the Federal government to butt out of issues that they consider a state issue-- like racial discrimination. Libertarian at the Federal level so that states are free to intrude further into people's lives. And, there is a reason for that. In order to get elected, they have to appeal to enough constituencies. We know from various opinion polls there are still somewhere around 18-20% of voters who are significantly racist.

    (And, also, there actually are some people who actually seem to believe in a fantasy Libertarian Utopia on earth. And, they tend to post an awful lot on various bulletin boards all over for some reason.)
     
  20. Dmunjal macrumors 65816

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    #20
    Yes, there are a few. Rand Paul and Mike Lee are the closest examples.

    It's interesting to see how this Syria discussion is playing out with both Democrats and Republicans pushing for war. There's bipartisanship for you! It's interesting to watch Kerry, the antiwar candidate, push for war.

    When it comes to TBTF banks, war, and corporate welfare, we can always count on bipartisanship support. The libertarians are consistently against those.
     
  21. Michael Goff macrumors G3

    Michael Goff

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    #21
    Rand Paul is a conservative with occasional libertarian views. :|
     
  22. Happybunny thread starter macrumors 68000

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    #22
    Both of the people are part of the Republican Party, they are nothing in part of the Libertarianism party.


    The Libertarian Party is a national American political party that reflects the ideas of libertarianism. The Libertarian Party was formed in Westminster, Colorado, in the home of David Nolan on December 11, 1971.[7] The founding of the party was prompted in part due to concerns about the Vietnam War, conscription, and the end of the Gold Standard.[8] Although there is not an explicitly-labeled "left" or "right" designation of the party, many members, such as Libertarian Party presidential candidate Gary Johnson, say they are more socially liberal than the Democrats, but more fiscally conservative than the Republicans. The party has generally promoted a classical liberal platform, in contrast to the modern liberal and progressive platform of the Democrats and the more conservative platform of the Republicans.[9]
    In the 30 states where voters can register by party, there are 330,811 voters registered as Libertarian Party members.[1] By this count the Libertarian Party is the third-largest party by membership in the United States and it is the third-largest political party in the United States in terms of the popular vote in the country's elections and number of candidates run per election. Due to this, it has been labelled by some as the United States' third-largest political party.[10] It is also identified by many as the fastest growing political party in the United States.[11]
    Hundreds of Libertarian candidates have been elected or appointed to public office, and thousands have run for office under the Libertarian banner.[12] The Libertarian Party has many firsts in its credit, such as being the first party to get an electoral vote for a woman in a United States presidential election, due to a faithless elector.[13] The party has no current representation in the House of Representatives or the Senate and controls no governorships or other state-wide elected positions.[citation needed] At the state legislature level, the party controls no seats in any upper house or lower house.[citation needed] Thus, the party would govern most practically through forming a coalition government with a larger party by winning enough seats to prevent the major parties such the Democrats and Republicans from achieving a majority government and forcing one of them to form a minority government.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Libertarian_Party_(United_States)
     
  23. Dmunjal macrumors 65816

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    #23
    Fair enough but for those three topics that matter to me, it's good enough.

    ----------

    This speaks more to our two party system than it does about anything else. If there were a valid third party, Paul and Lee would be members.
     
  24. AustinIllini macrumors demi-god

    AustinIllini

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    #24
    You nailed it on the head. I only consider myself a libertarian because I feel the government is too big and powerful. I don't believe that strict Libertarianism is the answer. I don't believe in the free tax at all (a Libertarian staple in some sects) and I support (in general) a federal declaration of complete marriage equality (so did Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson last election).

    ----------

    I agree with this. And as a social Liberal, I am THRILLED that the Libertarian movement is more likely to hit the Republican Party than the Democrats.
     
  25. Dmunjal macrumors 65816

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    #25
    What I don't understand is the vitriol from the left and especially MSNBC against the libertarian movement. They are helping reshape the Republican party in way that is more socially tolerant and open to legalizing drugs, gay marriage, and firmly antiwar. Gary Johnson's platform also had a lot of issues for Democrats to like.

    What I don't like is when libertarian leaning Republicans tow the party line and refuse to push against these social issues, especially during primary season. But may be they don't have any choice if they want a platform on a major party.

    As I've said before, there is only one party in the US as far as the big topics go. Both sides agree on deficit spending, war, support of the big banks, corporate welfare, a tax system that favors the poor and the rich but screws the middle class.

    Libertarians are shining a light on this two-party dysfunctional system we have.
     

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