View Poll Results: What percentage are actual libertarians?

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  • Almost 100%

    4 19.05%
  • About 50%

    6 28.57%
  • Maybe 25%

    6 28.57%
  • Less than 10%

    5 23.81%
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Thread: What percentage of people that claim to be Libertarians are actual Libertarians?

  1. #31
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    Re: What percentage of people that claim to be Libertarians are actual Libertarians?

    I've never self identified as a libertarian precisely because of the difference in attitude I have regarding their approach to foreign policy. Its my biggest beef with them.

    Domestically, I trend towards libertarianism on social issues, but economically I am not quite one. Things like returning to the gold standard are going to be a bit outdated and not feasible IMO.

    Overall, I think libertarianism is an ideology just like any other. In its purist form, it just won't work. Thus variations of it spring up. Its kind of the counter to Marxism, which is full of its own "faux-intellectuals" as NCFY so eloquently regards libertarians.
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  2. #32
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    Re: What percentage of people that claim to be Libertarians are actual Libertarians?

    I classify myself as a libertarian or a classic liberal. But my subjective use of the word is shaped by my experiences of growing up in Australia.

    For example, I believe in a bill or rights, gun ownership freedom of speech and limited government.

    But I do not believe in federalism, because I see it as a redundant duplication and increase of government.

    Gun ownership. I don't have a problem with responsible citizens owning bolt action rifles or shotguns. But I don't like hand guns because they can be concealed. I don't think that people need some modern weaponry, that is not just designed to kill, but are designed to increase the efficiency of killing.

    People need the right to protect their homes from criminals and the threat of authoritarian governments, but it seems to me strange to ignore the potential risks of owning CERTAIN types of firearms.... But that is just a thought....

    As to the war or terrorism, I am of the opinion that if Americans, Brits or Australians want to successfully destroy Al-Queda, then that means that we have to be taxed to pay for such resources. If that means citizens have less money for TV's, cars, clothes etc, then that is the reality of fighting wars.

    But then I find it very distasteful that some people were willing to suspend judicial procedure and some civil liberties during times of war.....

    And to a certain degree, I think that you need some sort of PRIMITIVE education and health systems, because I really do think that if there was only private education and health care, that the vast majority of people would live in squalor and poverty. But when it comes to higher education, or elite education, or non-emergency health care I am all for privatization.

    Maybe I am more of a Chicago School libertarian that agrees with the notion that government is needed for some purposes especially in dealing with externalities or natural monopolies, and I am less of an Austrian (even though I believe that Austrian theory is important as an aspirational point of ethics).

  3. #33
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    Re: What percentage of people that claim to be Libertarians are actual Libertarians?

    It depends on what you mean by "actual" libertarian. Libertarians, like all political idealogies, has various shades and degrees. As Ethereal said, the Libertarian Party's platform is not a good gauge. The LP is still run by extreme libertarians, and it is not at all even attempting to be mainstream or a big tent party like the Republicans and Democrats.

    Personally, I know I'm not a 100% pure libertarian. I support free trade and decreased regulations, but I'm not advocating returning to the gold standard or abolishing the federal reserve or ripping up NAFTA. I want smaller government, but I'm not ready to completely privatize education. Socially I favor decriminalizing or legalizing drugs, legalizing prostitution, but I'm still pro-life. On foreign policy, I favor a general philosphy of non-intervention, but realize that on occasion we must take action. Allowing Iran for instance to have nuclear weapons is a frightening thought and would seriously destablize the world and be a potential threat to the US. I call myself libertarian because I believe we need less government in our lives - both in social and economic matters. I believe the purpose of government is preserve our liberty, not to regulate our lives. I think that's the unifying thought for most libertarians.
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  4. #34
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    Re: What percentage of people that claim to be Libertarians are actual Libertarians?

    Quote Originally Posted by SouthernDemocrat View Post
    Personally, I know a lot of people that claim to be libertarians. Most of them have defended the war in Iraq to me. Defended the suspension of Habeas Corpus for Gitmo Detainees. Defended wiretaps. Defended huge defense spending bills. Were anti-gay marriage (not because they thought that marriage should not even be dealt with in government at all, but rather they used the old slipperly slope argument), and basically held countless views that were "statist".

    I have a lot of respect for libertarian ideas. Some I agree with. However I don't know a lot of actual real libertarians.
    I'm a conservative that states he has libertarian leans, and at this point would be more likely to join the Libertarian Party than the Republican party in its current form.

    In regards to the things you've said:

    War in Iraq: I will and do defend this. Not necessarily the initial entrance into it or the strategy, both of which I had issues with from the start. HOWEVER, I do believe that at this point it would be irresponsible and more damaging to us to pull out early and too fast. Its a bad situation, but in this case I don't believe that making your decision for the present based on your feelings of the past is wise. Just because it may've been bad to go in in the first place does not mean that should over ride the negatives of pulling out now that we actually DID go in.

    Habeas Corpus: I have issues with this in some way, and some not. I have issues with anyone taken simply due to the "War on Terror". Much like the "War on Drugs" or the "War on Poverty" I don't see this as a legitimate real "war". If they're taken during the War in Iraq or War in Afghanistan as combatants then that's different in my eye. Either way, there is a need to update some of our law and code to address the fact that this force is significantly different than past forces as it is a well trained group of individuals sworn to a purpose but not necessarily aligned to a specific country or uniformed.

    Patriot Act: My stance on this has been posted about this in just about every PA thread I think. Essentially, the vast majority of the Patriot Act is needed simply to make current law actually up to date technologically. Unless you're planning on getting rid of TITLE III of OMNIBUS Crime Control and Safe Streets Act and FISA, then the majority of Patriot needs to stay. Most of the more questionable parts of it should, and are, being faught against. However, if one looks at the history of this country, such acts like those in the Patriot Act are oft repeated and oft scaled back in a natural cycle. This does not mean it should not be faught, but it does mean such hysterics need to be made.

    Defense Spending: In the defense of...well...Defense...this is at least one of the most core purposes of the government. I'm in strong agreement with Libertarians for the most part in regards to non-intervention and the scaling back of our forces abroad. That said, this goes back to my thoughts on the Iraq War. We're into these things and I believe simply pulling out quick without thought for the repercussions is a foolish endeavor. We need to work at finding quick, but thorough, solutions to ending these wars thoroughly and scaling back at a good but somewhat up tempo rate.

    Gay Marriage: Remove marriage from law, make civil unions between two joint people. You remain at two people so multiple groupings can not come together to play the tax code and to limit issues with numerous other privledges bestowed upon Union Couples that would become much more hazardous to deal with if you allowed for multiple (polygamy) or for things that can't give consent (animals, children, etc).

    In general, I'd put myself squarely conservative. Many of my leans are more libertarian in nature, and at times I'll acknowledge I'm more Libertarian than Republican per se, but I wouldn't claim to be a rock ribbed libertarian. I'm an admitted odd conservative, who has some views outside of the norm from the Republican party but are generally arrived at by some tennent of Conservatism.
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  5. #35
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    Re: What percentage of people that claim to be Libertarians are actual Libertarians?

    I'm against basically all of what SD talked about, except gay marriage where I'm lukewarmly for civil unions. And I'm a libertarian-conservative, or communitarian-individualist if you will, on social issues.
    "It is written in the eternal constitution that men of intemperate minds cannot be free. Their passions forge their fetters." - Edmund Burke

  6. #36
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    Re: What percentage of people that claim to be Libertarians are actual Libertarians?

    It depends on how you define "libertarian", most people don't seem to agree. The ones that seem to be most strenuous in their libertarianism also tend to be, at least in my experience, the farthest out in left field in their views. Until there's an actual accepted definition of the term, it's a little hard to decide who fits and who does not fit the definition.
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  7. #37
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    Re: What percentage of people that claim to be Libertarians are actual Libertarians?

    I do not think I could really place a percentage without evidence so I made the safe vote: 50%
    May be I should narrow my view to Minarchist.
    'The whole universe is going to die!'

  8. #38
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    Re: What percentage of people that claim to be Libertarians are actual Libertarians?

    Quote Originally Posted by GySgt View Post
    Kelzie tagged me as a "hawkish apathetic libertarian."
    I don't know you well enough to know if that is accurate, but I trust her judgement enough to agree...
    Oracle of Utah
    Truth rings hollow in empty heads.

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