Thursday, July 25, 2013

Who's to say that Libertarian politicians, over time, wouldn't become Statists?

I get variations on this all the time:  "Who's to say that your Libertarian candidates wouldn't start spending and regulating like Statists if they stayed in office long enough?"

My answer  "If you left mulitiple generations of them in office long enough, without changing any of the rules of the game, or changing the worldview of the electorate, they probably would become Statists."

People are people.  They don't become cherubs when they win the beauty contests that we call "elections".  I'm sure that Ron Paul could be swayed by flattery and donations.  Ditto for Gary Johnson.  Judge Jim Gray is one of the finest men I've ever met, but I bet if you agreed to fund one of his favorite causes, he'd be willing to consider using a few taxpayer dollars to build that new stadium, or blow up some brown people overseas, or throw some stimulus in the right direction. 

This is why it's so important to have a government that is as small as possible.  Government is force.  The power to take other people's stuff and redistribute it.  The power to throw your enemies into steel cages.   I honestly don't know anyone that I would trust with that power for a long period of time. 

Here's some vintage Milton Friedman:
The important thing is to establish a political climate of opinion which will make it politically profitable for the wrong people to do the right thing. Unless it is politically profitable for the wrong people to do the right thing, the right people will not do the right thing either, or it they try, they will shortly be out of office.
I believe that Libertarian candidates are the most likely to do the right thing.  But it's even more important for you to be aware of the right thing - stopping redistribution, ending privacy violations, curbing the spending and ending the wars. 

In the meantime, we're getting the government (and the wars, and the debt, and the wealth transfers, and the black incarceration rate, and the taxes) that we deserve. 

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