Tuesday, March 18, 2008

I did not forget you, Libertarians!

Some libertarians are all in tizzy because I didn't mention their party in my Los Angeles Times op ed today: http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/la-oe-wright18mar18,0,3662044.story. I'm sorry there wasn't enough space to work y'all in. The Libertarian Party deserves many more words than I was given space for. Moreover, I'm not sure that it fits the bill as it tries to cover too many areas. What I'd like to see is a party narrowly-focused on getting our economic, financial, and fiscal houses in order. Then we can worry about gun control, national id cards, immigration, abortion, and all that very divisive jazz. On its website, the LP (http://www.lp.org/article_85.shtml) says it is the third largest party in America, but it only has about 200,000 registered voters nationwide. That isn't very big; there are more people in my neighborhood! I think most Americans are centrists, both left to right (Democrat to Republic) and up to down (libertarian to statist). To win national or big state elections, you have to be close to the center, to found common ground upon which to unite the most people possible. I think that means appealing to things like the budget and the debt and keeping one's mouth shut on social issues. To the extent that other issues impinge on the budget/debt, they should be discussed in those "dollars and sense" terms rather than in ideological ones (e.g. governments or markets suck).

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