The presidential race is just the icing on the cake, and he isn't a shoo-in for the nomination anyway. The more-historic news: he has joined the LP. That makes him the first LP member of congress.
Amash is pretty consistent, I guess I trust him as much as any of the others. As by far the most entrenched and well known name in the party he should secure the nomination. If he does I see no reason to divert from voting for the Libertarian candidate this year anymore than the rest. Either way, a hulluva lot stronger candidate than Gary Johnson who was a nice guy, but terrible candidate. I am good with him.
Libertarian presidential candidate Jacob Hornberger provided on Saturday a clear example of such an approach in regard to US military policy. Speaking at the Pennsylvania Libertarian Party state convention, Hornberger stated:
Yeah, I agree, bring the troops home from these so-called
forever wars. But, itâs not enough. Bring them home from everywhere:
Korea, Europe â World War IIâs over, Latin America, wherever. And thatâs
not all. Discharge them as they hit American shores. Put them in the
private sector. And then start concentrating on dismantling this alien
form of governmental structure called a national security state. Get rid
of the CIA. Get rid of the NSA. Get rid of the Pentagon, this whole
military-industrial complex. Restore a limited-government republic with a
basic military force.
It will come as a shock no doubt that Hitchens wasn't addressing libertarians, but Objectivists. He was a frequent guest at the Cato Institute and Reason magazine. He also wrote admiring biographies of libertarian heroes Thomas Payne and Thomas Jefferson.
You don't make the intellectual evolution Hitchens underwent in one step. Along the way he had a lot to say, but his advocacy for a number of libertarian principles (free expression chief among them) was a constant.
He has a great quote from Norberto Bobbio at the end:
There were only a few of us who preserved a small bag in which, before throwing ourselves into the sea, we deposited for safekeeping the most salutary fruits of the European intellectual tradition, the value of enquiry, the ferment of doubt, a willingness to dialogue, a spirit of criticism, moderation of judgment, philological scruple, a sense of the complexity of things. Many, too many, deprived themselves of this baggage: they either abandoned it, considering it a useless weight; or they never possessed it, throwing themselves into the waters before having the time to acquire it. I do not reproach them; but I prefer the company of the others. Indeed, I suspect that this company is destined to grow, as the years bring wisdom and events shed new light on things.
When we launched the Niskanen Center in January 2015, we happily identified ourselves as libertarians. Sure, we were heterodox libertarians, but there are many schools of libertarianism beyond those promoted by Charles Koch’s political operations. The school we identified with was a left-libertarianism concerned with social justice (a libertarian perspective that I’ve defended in debates with more orthodox libertarians here and here). That worldview lacked an institutional voice in 2015. Our ambition was to create a space for it and, in so doing, redefine what it meant to be libertarian in the 21st century.
I have abandoned that libertarian project, however, because I have come to abandon ideology. This essay is an invitation for you to do likewise — to walk out of the “clean and well-lit prison of one idea.” Ideology encourages dodgy reasoning due to what psychologists call “motivated cognition,” which is the act of deciding what you want to believe and using your reasoning power, with all its might, to get you there. Worse, it encourages fanaticism, disregard for social outcomes, and invites irresolvable philosophical disputes. It also threatens social pluralism — which is to say, it threatens freedom.
The better alternative is not moral relativism. The better alternative is moderation, a commodity that is rapidly disappearing in political life, with dangerous consequences for the American republic.
I believe that monetary policy should be a priority issue for Libertarians and libertarian-minded folks.
James Bullard, St. Louis Federal Reserve Bank president just called for interest rate cuts for a couple of reasons, among them, to increase the inflation rate which is sitting well below the 2% target at roughly 1.6% in recent years.
I believe that the inflation target should be 0% and the US Federal Reserve should drop the employment mandate. Insure price stability (including financial asset stability) and then get the hell out of the way.
Many macro economists believe that positive rates of inflation are necessary in order to fool agents into better outcomes. It is paternalism of the worst kind and contradicts the approach taken to most economic policy issues by economists who tend to favour transparency and accurate information.
This is very very cool. IIRC one of the Dakotas has their own state banking system which has been in place for decades. The state has been prospering as a direct result.
And yes about JFK ...
. OBTW ... The Federal banking system has doing the same thing to gun store owners for about the past 10 or so years. They have a hard time keeping a bank that will handle their money. And their businesses are legal and well regulated ...
Lift the libertarian's skirt a bit and there you find the essence of a devoted Statist. With just a slight albeit interesting variation on how to do Statism.
Social anarchists make a more gallant attempt to dismantle the State as much as possible. Just sayin'.
At one point I was referencing the harm reduction approach literature which I vaguely recall getting some support from Libertarian writers.
The fact that a popular, widely-used drug like cannabis is dangerous is an excellent reason for legalizing it. Social control is largely sacrificed in a black market situation.
If you want to make a harm reduction argument I'm down with that, but I'd also argue that it really doesn't apply to cannabis. "Dangerous" is a relative term of course. Sorry if I misunderstood what you were getting at.
As for the statist claim...I've only ever heard that from anarchists before, and I think even they realize how silly it sounds. But whatever floats your valves.