Friday, June 16, 2006

Ronald Bailey's Message to Libertarians: Vote Democratic!

In an important article in Reason magazine, Ronald Bailey lays out a compelling case for libertarian-minded voters to go with the Democrats this year: the need to block Bush and Cheney's radical right wing agenda and Bush's incessant attack on our civil liberties. Key paragraph:
The Democrats are right about one thing—the Republicans on Capitol Hill have slithered into a comfortable culture of corruption. It's not just the corruption of too cozy relations with lobbyists, but it is also the corruption of power wielded without restraint. The federal budget under the Bush Administration—ably helped by the big spenders in the Republican House and Senate—is hemorrhaging money faster than LBJ's Great Society did. In addition, the Bush Administration and Congress revealed even more incompetence in their bungled response to the flooding of New Orleans by hurricane Katrina. Congress is wasting time on debating and voting on the Gay Marriage Amendment and the Flag Protection Amendment. And even worse, the Republican Congress supinely allowed the rise of an imperial presidency which authorizes wide-scale domestic spying, the torture, and indefinite detention of prisoners—policies that make the president into judge, jury, and jailer. The Bush Administration even asked the Department of Justice about the legality of halting the 2004 presidential elections in the event of a terrorist attack. Why? After all, the recent Iraqi elections were not halted because of terrorist attacks and Spain went ahead with its general election three days after the Madrid train bombing in March 2004. Finally, let's not forget the tragic mismanagement of the war in Iraq.
I couldn't have made a better list myself. I've argued for years that libertarians should be making alliances with Democrats. Democrats have been chastened by their setbacks. They are now the party of fiscal responsibility, even fiscal conservatism. They are the party committed to defending civil liberties, personal freedom, the right to privacy, and open government. Whatever other differences libertarians have with Democrats, one thing is clear: the Republicans are the avowed enemies of everything libertarians hold dear. If we are to stop the establishment of a Republican-run theocracy in the United States, we need to work together. So to all libertarians, I say,

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