Hey you! Yes you, the libertarian or conservative with libertarian leanings that doesn’t feel quite at home in the Libertarian Facebook groups. You aren’t alone. Most people aren’t comfortable with, nor find amusement in picking fights for fun. Sensible people, regardless of ideology, don’t typically revel in the type of chaos that we witness on a daily basis – the squabble with one goal in mind, to drive each other closer to anarchical views. Who wants to end every discussion being called a ‘statist’ simply because your views aren’t the most radical on the thread, or sacrificing your principles in order to be the one that gets to say it? Of those of us who are Christian or religious, what fun is it to fear literal persecution in groups intended to beget the opposite effect? I suspect that many endure the nonsense because we don’t necessarily mesh with the warmonger neo-conservatives that comprise the Conservative Groups or their hypocrisy of claiming to be for small government while promoting everything that keeps central government strong. On the same token, there’s never really been anywhere else to go that’s remotely viable, particularly as the Libertarian Party has finally garnered long awaited national recognition, despite squandering it away by nominating a moderate Presidential Candidate and a gun-hating, CFR loving VP Candidate, as well as having the Convention tarnished by images of a naked fat guy running across the stage for the world to see. Despite all of this, the LP and the libertarian groups still seem to be where all the ‘cool kids’ hang out.
That being said, I recently interviewed seven individuals from various liberty-minded, closely related philosophies in an attempt to determine a few things:
Has the LP moved too far to the left?
Has the Republican Party moved too far center, becoming too authoritarian foe either paleo-conservatives or libertarians?
Is there room between between those two parties for a another party to become a viable option for the future?
First, neo-cons have altered the path of the Republican Party to an irreconcilable place in terms of interventionism and globalism. Despite their professed views regarding government, they embrace the state and its power structure and propensity for corruption. “Constitutional conservative” is probably one of the most misused terms among the political right. I can vouch for this because just months ago I , myself, was a neo-con who erroneously touted the term to describe myself. After a few months of studying the Constitution and the original intent of the founding fathers, I can honestly say that very few who claim the term for themselves today are deserving of it, rendering it practically useless. They can be educated and guided, but were not practical for the purpose of this article.
These dimensions of libertarianism seem to understand, even acknowledge important aspects of our society that their libertarian counterparts discount, or even disregard as views perilous and incompatible with liberty. Common sense and morality guide their reasoning. As Paleo-libertarian Tony Cansoneri, writer forLiberty Hangout, defined it, a Paleo-libertarian is “a libertarian who believes that culture and tradition are key components of freedom and that a free and voluntary society can uphold these and defend these better than state. [Paleo-libertarians] also believe in radical decentralization of government and many, if not most of us, are skeptical of multiculturalism and believe that to the extent it exists today, it is a nasty byproduct of government largess that leads to much turmoil….Paleo-libertarians also believe in radical decentralization of government and many, if not most of us, are skeptical of multiculturalism.” That sounds refreshing for levelheaded libertarians, doesn’t it? He continues, “I would say that a paleo-libertarian is essentially a far right conservative at heart and typically believes in traditional values and western culture as necessary components, seeing social and cultural conservatism as a byproduct of a free society. The more free a society is, the more virtuous it can be. . we hold that the individual is supreme and the extension of the individual (private property) is what all rights truly stem from.”
Traditionalism (even patriotism) isn’t highly regarded among libertarian circles. They’re believed to be incongruous with individual liberty, yet these are important American ideals, from which liberty itself is derived. One of the most surprising discoveries in my interviews was the fact that ALL SEVEN value patriotism and traditionalism. Likewise, five of seven were religious and only one was agnostic. While I’ve never found solid, scientific polling on the religious makeup of the Libertarian Party, I’ve personally found it to be very unwelcoming to the religious, particularly Christians. The informal polling I have found suggest that a very high percentage of libertarians consider themselves agnostic or atheist – to, the tune of 40% agnostic within the Partycompared to 7-20% of the national population. Classical liberal Clay Hesketh, one of the Rand Paul supporters interviewed and the only agnostic of the seven, states “I believe that tradition and culture are important on an individual or community level, but not on a state or national level. I’m skeptical about multiculturalism because it can become a veiled form of segregation.”
Although possibly not the majority, many agreed with these views of mine. Staunch Rand Paul supporter and a minarchist libertarian, Paul Maurone, says in regards to traditionalism and patriotism, “They are positive. Patriotism should be defined as a vigilant allegiance to our nation and Constitution – NOT to our politicians who are running the show.” Unprovoked invocation of the Constitution is something you’ll rarely see among the libertarian left or anarchists, of whom usually hold our founding document in contempt. 2: Long time Ron and Rand Paul supporter, and libertarian/constitutionalist Susie Clark declares, “I no longer call myself a Libertarian. They have gone liberal. I am pro-life and not for open borders. I am a little ‘L’ libertarian, but I like Constitutional Conservative. The Libertarian (Party) no longer upholds the Constitution, they worry more about drug policies, they mock Christianity, and stand with the Globalists traitors to humanity.” When asked to what esteem she holds the Constitution, Susie answered, “(It’s) 2nd below the Word of God. The Constitution was written by men who fought against a King. They gave us the Constitution to make sure it does not happen again.” This is a complaint I hear often relevant to the libertarian left and anarchists. They have no respect for the Constitutionand consider the parchment barrier a failure, rather than grasping the concept that it can never serve its purpose without us doing our part.
An interesting and informative interview was one conducted with Michael Stevens, a fusionist. Fusionism is a philosophy popularized by Frank Meyer in the mid to late 1900’s. Many say that it has faded out of existence, while others claim that politicians such as Rand Paul and Ted Cruz are modern day, prominent fusionists. The most distinguished fusionists of all were Ronald Reagan and Barry Goldwater. Describing fusionism, Michael states that “Fusionism is an idea that combines the ideas of libertarianism and conservatism into a pro-liberty and pro-morality philosophy. We are for limited government, economic freedom, individual responsibility, and no gun restrictions. We value federalism on issues like drug legalization or decriminalization. . . Fusionists see that one has to have morality to have liberty. You also cannot have liberty without life. Ronald Reagan said in 1975 that ‘…the heart and soul of conservatism is libertarianism.’ I believe fusionism is true conservatism. Its roots date back to our founding as a Republic where our roots have both a conservative and libertarian foundation. The individual is the highest form in this philosophy. We believe in reducing the role of government (per) the Constitution. The government’s job is to protect individual rights in the Bill of Rights and (as) outlined in the Declaration of Independence. We believe in a Christian founding but believe in the separation of church and state, as Jefferson intended, not as it is interpreted today. We believe in one where the Federal government is on one side of the divide and the State and local governments, as well as the Churches, are on the other. . . On issues of the economy, leave the government out but enforce a moral compass in the economy. In terms of ideology, between libertarianism and conservatism the thin line on the political ideological scale is where fusionism or libertarian-conservatism lies. It’s more of a balanced philosophy that believes in the idea of liberty that coexists with the rule of law.”
Along with other differences I have discussed, I believe that the “balanced philosophy that believes in the idea of liberty that coexists with the rule of law” is an important distinction. The libertarian left and the anarchist purists seem to believe that the ideology of libertarianism, as an absolute, is the only ideology worth advocating. The problem is that the experience that is taken into account by the conservative ideologies and paleo-libertarianism can’t be ignored, especially when compared to an ideology of concept only. When asked whether or not there was room for another party outside of the three largest, I received a wide array of answers. Some were disgusted with partisan politics altogether; one thinks there isn’t room outside the top two, much less three; and a few think there is definitely room for more parties. None seemed privately content with the leftward move of the Libertarian mainstream. From the outside looking in, I’m not sure how the Libertarian Party is amassing so much support since the right side of their base seems so disenfranchised. It’s quite analogous to the Republican Party, to be honest. It, too, has maneuvered leftward, yet misrepresented right-wingers continue to stick around. The contrast with the Republican Party supporters, I suppose, is that they are stationary due to fear or apathy. The Libertarian Party, contrarily, has garnered its latest wave of support due to momentum it has obtained over the past two to four years due to an excited base. It simply seems, now, to be suffering growing pains as its rapid leftward shift is alienating Christian supporters, the right side of the movement, and those who have evolved from their previously neo-conservative views to a more libertarian perspective.
The acrimony that many libertarians have with regards to Christianity, traditionalism, patriotism, and even the Constitution, is tough to swallow for many. I’m very fond of the Constitution. To my pleasant surprise, all seven of those interviewed hold the Constitution in high esteem. My personal disdain for the libertarian left is its disregard for the Constitution, in spite of the document’s quintessence of our great core philosophies, such as classical liberalism, paleo-libertarianism, and paleo-conservatism. This unique combination, coupled with our Judeo-Christian founding and principles, has created the greatest nation in human history. These differences don’t include others that many of the aforementioned philosophies hold in direct conflict with the Libertarian Party and it’s platform, such as the damaging consequences of weak border security, the adverse effects that the platform’s (figurative) open border policy would precipitate, the perceived obsession with drug legalization, the perpetual evolution towards the outright promotion of anarchy by the purists, and the widely embraced dogma of the NAP – which along with anarchy, places far too much confidence in and grossly overestimates the goodness of man. We are not benevolent beings by nature. We are very much opportunistic and that leads to greed, violence, etc. What virtue we possess seems to not be ascribed to the proper places by the libertarian left; those consisting of our founding of Christianity, our culture, God’s natural law, etc. These reflect our morals, not humanism or progressivism.
So we have a group of mostly Christian, patriotic libertarians and conservatives with no party to closely represent their values. Both no longer acknowledge God (for the religious ones), one wants perpetual war and loves big government, and one doesn’t value traditionalism, patriotism, pragmatism, or the Constitution (in many cases). Many that do value the Constitution in both parties aren’t originalists when referencing it, several only use it where it is deemed beneficial in context to their current argument. One has shared power for far too long, only to become the epitome of corruption from localities and states up to Congress and the Executive Branch. The other, after 45 years has finally reached relevancy nationwide, but seems to only have space for those willing to be stifled in their religious and traditionalist beliefs in exchange for humanism and multiculturalist activism. I have news. There is another choice. It isn’t cool to say I’m a member of the Constitution Party. Your libertarian friends who reside on the left side of the spectrum or who don’t understand the meaning of the word will likely call you a theocrat. You aren’t going to find many college friends rushing to join their campus YAConstitution instead of YAL or YAF. Julie Borowski isn’t likely to be caught binge tweeting pro-Darrell Castle tweets. There probably won’t be any Constitution Party hotties featured in Babes for Liberty and it’s doubtful that you’ll find a notification on your Facebook account informing you that Liberty Laura has spontaneously stopped in her car to orchestrate a pro-Constitution Party live stream (as much as we’d all love that!). One thing you will see is people toeing the party line over principle for the Libertarian Party this cycle.
Finally, for those on the libertarian right, the liberty leaning conservatives, and everything between, you CAN bake your own cake and eat it too! There is a party that holds the founding fathers’ principles, teachings, intent, and vision for our posterity dear. There’s a party that believes in ending the Fed, staying out of other countries’ affairs, ending perpetual war, repealing the 16th and 17th Amendments, leaving the UN and other organizations and treaties that surrender our sovereignty to foreign and international courts and organizations, dissolving the unconstitutional conglomerate of acronym Alphabet Soup federal agencies, that is anti-Agenda 21, and is for small government—and it’s no longer the Libertarian Party. This same party holds our foundation (not establishment of religion) of Christian morals and principles, traditionalism, patriotism, and the importance of the 10th Amendment in high esteem. It holds our Constitution as its namesake and focal point, unlike any other party.Become a Constitutionist, join the Constitution Party @ http://constitutionparty.com