Many of us feel very dissatisfied about having to choose between the lesser f two evils for president. Many think that Hillary Clinton is dishonest and has been bought and paid for by large special interests, and many think that Trump is unqualified in international affairs and a braggart bully with no substance on the issues. We shouldn’t have to make the least bad choice.
Gary Johnson, former governor of New Mexico and the Libertarian Party candidate for President, is a good choice. Johnson is a down-to-earth, common sense person who believes in fiscal responsibility, social tolerance, strong defense international good will, and individual liberty. Socially, he has a live-and-let-live philosophy – you should be able to do pretty much whatever you want as long as you don’t initiate force or fraud against others, and don’t put others in danger. Fiscally, he believes the federal government should play a much smaller role in our lives. He does believe there is a proper role for government – to help protect our lives, our liberty, and our justly acquired property. He is against crony capitalism. He knows that a welfare state creates dependency. He believes that we should work together, cooperatively and voluntarily, to solve our common problems.
If you are polled about who you would support or vote for President, tell them that you are for Gary Johnson, the Libertarian candidate for president. At least that might get him into the national debates and give us a chance to learn about an alternative to the the lesser of two evils.
Randy Barnett, legal scholar, wrote this in the October issue of Reason magazine:
“… you can’t make your happiness contingent on getting a libertarian society. The struggle for liberty will never end because there are always going to be statists. There are always going to be people who enjoy security over liberty, because that’s another part of the natural instincts that people have. And so the best that we can ever accomplish is keeping liberty alive. And you can keep liberty alive just by being a libertarian yourself, and writing about it, and getting other people to be. Even if the society you live in is not, you can at least keep the idea of liberty alive, possibly liberty itself.”
The proper role of government is to protect our lives, liberty and property against those who would use force or fraud against us. The powers of government should be limited to those same powers that each individual is morally justified in using. We are individually morally justified in defending our lives, liberty and property against those who would use force or fraud to take those things away from us. If it is morally wrong for an individual to do something, that same thing does not somehow become moral because a majority of the people want to do it. If it is morally wrong for an individual to use force to take justly obtained property from another person, then it is not made moral by by being done by a majority.
In order to have a civil society, one that is ruled by laws that apply equally to all instead of one that is ruled by force, it is proper for people to cooperate socially to form governments. It is a good thing to have a justice system to resolve disputes between people. Humans have emotions and biases that often prevent them from solving their own disputes. If you didn’t know whether or not you might be on the wrong side of the law, wouldn’t you want the dispute to be decided by an independent, impartial judge and/or jury? That is a proper role for our government.
Otherwise, our government should let honest and peaceful people do pretty much anything as long as they don’t use force or fraud against others, and don’t infringe on the same right of others.
Leonard Read wrote the book, “Anything that’s peaceful.” It expressed the fundamental libertarian philosophy that we are each born free individuals and should be left alone by our government to pursue happiness any way we want as long as we don’t use fraud or unjustified force against anyone else. The force of government should not be used against people acting honestly, peacefully, and voluntarily with one another. Government may be the price we pay for a civil society, buy government force should not be used to take the life, liberty or justly owned property of peaceful and honest individuals. Taxes should be voluntary and users of goods and services should mostly pay their own way. Government power should be limited to those same powers that are morally justified for individuals to use. For example, you can morally capture and punish a person who attacks you, so our government can have a criminal justice system and a national defense program, But, you cannot morally take justly owned property from another person because they have too much and you have too little, or because you want to spend it on defense or roads or something else that everyone might benefit from and which will otherwise have some “free riders.”
I ask you, what is the moral justification for using the force of government to take the life, liberty, or property of a peaceful person?