What is a libertarian and what aspects of the Democratic platform do they support vs the GOP platform


What is a libertarian and what aspects of the Democratic platform do they support vs the GOP platform

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Typically pro-choice, pro-whatever so long as it doesn’t negatively impact someone else, as in if you want to put drugs into your system feel free.

Mostly, simply, it is about self-accountability and responsibility.

Definitely not pro-tax, freebies from the government, etc.

Each individual can decide for themselves what is best for them, and if something affecting the larger community is happening then getting together with the other members of society to resolve them – agreeable to all.

Generically, less government interference in personal affairs.

Like all philosophies libertarians have a range of views (for example 62% are pro choice, meaning 38% aren’t), but generally in a “live and let live” way. It goes from “no government at all” anarcho-capitalists to “keep government small, local, and accountable” minarchists.

Democratic side (not all of these are on the platform, but they lean that way; I realize Biden isn’t okay with drugs, for example):
pro criminal justice reform
pro police accountability
pro drug & sex work decriminalization
pro equal voting rights

Republican side (again, not all actually on the platform)
pro gun rights
pro low taxes
pro privatization (charter schools, sales of state lands, etc)
pro deregulation

Also generally pro free trade, much more pro-immigration than most, and against foreign wars or interventions. Also against bailouts

Libertarians are a very diverse group – let me just start with that.

They tend to want people not to coerce one another into doing things, especially using means that ultimately result in violence. So, that tends to be various forms of government power, since if you don’t comply with the demands for long enough, there will eventually be violence when they take you into custody and imprison you.

Note, however, that contrary to popular belief, libertarianism is NOT anarchy, in the view of most libertarians. When you see someone conflating libertarianism with anarchy, it’s usually a straw man (or they’re just unfamiliar). For a voluntary/non-coercive system to function, there do need to be courts and other mechanisms of the state to enforce contracts to some degree. And there’s no reason not to have some pretty barebones laws that also generally codify the principle that one ought not force others to do things or to be harmed.

Another key concept is the NAP (non-aggression principle). Not all libertarians base their views on the NAP, but it will give you a view into what most of the libertarian ideology is about.

Libertarianism at its core is the belief in individual liberty; freedom of choice, autonomy, and individualism. Live and let live. It is the opposite of socialism. You are responsible for yourself and no one (govt or otherwise) is charged with your welfare. Unless your actions are negatively effecting the community you are free to live as you see fit. Small government, low taxes, very limited involvement in non-trade related foreign policy, etc.

As an aside, libertarianism is very broad. Definitely not a single shared view.

For example, some are anti-state, believing that private industry will serve all functions of a government. Others prefer limited government. Song want no restrictions, others want minimal restrictions.

The term libertarian is rather complex, in part because it has been claimed by multiple very different groups across history.

Libertarian philosophy generally is about minimal interference from government or other authority in people’s lives.

Libertarian as in the modern US Libertarian Party interprets this philosophy to support a “small government” platform. They are largely in favor of lower taxes and less regulations on the economy (siding with the GOP) as well as less restrictions on personal freedoms (being pro-choice, in favor of weed legalization, in favor of gun rights, etc – here they tend to side with the Democrats on pretty much everything except gun rights). In practice, their platforms on lower taxes and less economic regulation tends to be prioritized, which means they usually side with the GOP.

Historically, libertarian meant something quite different – the term was originally coined by (anarchist) socialists, who interpreted the freedom the philosophy supported as the freedom from a state that upholds capitalism. Libertarian socialists generally support a socialist society where government is primarily done on the local level and the economy is run cooperatively.

Libertarianism is a large tent. They tend to be idealogical rather than practical – IE that they have a theory of how the world should work and then they stick to it. In general it is a conservative world view that ignores negative externalities of policy (Basically – even if the personal freedoms libertarians would afford people would harm others indirectly, it isn’t a focus).

Generally speaking, the goal of libertarians is to minimize the impact of government on individuals.

Some libertarian positions would be, from more mainstream ideas to more extreme ones:

Pro choice (This would be pro abortion, anti government vaccine mandate as two examples)
Generally very strong “second amendment” support. As long as you don’t harm someone they don’t care how many guns you have.
Decrease the amount of power police have
Shrink or eliminate the military industrial complex
Reduce outside influences of government by eliminating lobbying
Freedom of speech/religion should be upheld at basically all costs
Decrease the power of the executive branch of government.
They prefer an isolationist foreign policy and also support free trade.
Generally prefer more open immigration policy
Reduce regulations (This goes for both assinine regulations like requiring interior designers to having a license all the way to reducing environmental/safety regulations)
Privatize as much as possible
Allow businesses to operate unimpeded
Decrease the social safety net (Less welfare / food stamps / social assistance)
Minimize what the federal government does at all – for example, some more extreme libertarians may think that as much of the road system should be privatized as possible.

There are people that call themselves libertarians that are closer to republicans. There are people that call themselves libertarians that are *closer* to anarchists.
They understand that the rule of law needs to be upheld, so they don’t think things like regulations and police shouldn’t exist, but they should be minimized.

I’m an ideal “democratic party” society, you’d pay your taxes and if you were sick you too the doctor and get fixed up. In an ideal libertarian society, you’d pay a lot less taxes, nothing would force you to pay for health insurance, and you could use all of that money that you saved to pay your doctor’s bill, which would hopefully be a lot cheaper. But if you don’t get sick, you could spend it elsewhere. And if you don’t have the money…. ?!? Good luck! Maybe some private individual will help out or the doctor will let you pay less or something.

If you want to read a fictional book that espouses a libertarian ideology, Atlas Shrugged is probably a starting point.

If I were to characterize the libertarian party, it would be that of a business tycoon that doesn’t care what you do in your spare time as long as he can do his business tycoon things and people aren’t killing, raping, and stealing from each other.

Sometimes this idealogical style creates preferences that do not say first seem logical. Libertarians will generally be fine with a social media platform banning people for any reason. They have no authority to affect the platform. It isn’t banning free speech. But they are also OK with stuff like storm front existing.

Personal opinion here:
I do not think there is no merit in libertarianism, but I do not think it is a practical enough ideology to apply in reality. The party is most useful as a foil to keep others in check.

I apologize for the formatting here, reddit on phones is annoying.

Libertarian originally meant a Left Libertarian: basically someone either anarcho-socialist, anarcho-communist, or someone very similar, such as a Libertarian Socialist.

Full disclosure: Libertarian Socialist is my political position.

Then a guy named Murray Rothbard led a movement to reclaim this word for Right-Wing Libertarians.

Right-Wing Libertarians are close to anarcho-capitalist, which is not a very defensible position. Even the ones that aren’t, tend to be Authoritarian if you challenge them on certain points.

An example is Ben Shapiro who is a well-known right-winger who claims to be a Libertarian, except that he wants the government to implement significant restrictions on transgender individuals, which is not something a true Libertarian would advocate for.

Libertarianism in the modern USA and many other countries means little or no government. Libertarians bend over backwards to try to figure out how society can function without government-or with as little government as possible. It is a modern political philosophy. Modern political philosophies are ones that have a meta-narrative. A meta-narrative is a big idea that, once implemented, is believed to solve all or most social problems. For example, communism is based on the idea or meta-narrative that differences in economic class, such as differences between rich and poor, is the biggest social problem. Therefore, communism states that eliminating class differences will solve most of society’s problems. Libertarianism states that government is the biggest problem in society. Therefore, minimizing or eliminating government will solve most of society’s problems. Democrats and Republicans are not really ideologies. They are political parties, which are coalitions of different interest groups. They may draw on ideas and share ideas with ideologies like communism or libertarianism, but they do not believe in a single overarching narrative. So it is not accurate to compare libertarianism to Democrats and Republicans. It is more accurate to compare libertarians to communists or theocrats. Modern ideologies can be represented by a political party. For example, there are Communist and Libertarian parties, but these are not parties in the sense that they are coalitions of different, yet similar interests. They are parties in the sense that they consist of people and organizations that believe in the ideology, the meta-narrative of libertarianism or communism.