Another thread on Libertarianism! Hooray!
But I’m asking something different here. I’m not asking what libertarianism is or whether it’s a good idea. I’m just asking why the party doesn’t do any better in U.S. elections.
The fact is, whether you agree with their ideas or not, their sure seem to be alot of libertarians about. There are a good number on this board, I’ve seen some in the media, and I’ve met some in my travels. They have their own think tank (the Cato institute) and at least one magazine (Reason). Also their ideas seem like they would appeal to a lot of Americans. Gay Republicans, for a start. Also Pot smokers for small gov’t, small business owners against the anti-gay marriage amendment, and plenty of others.
So how some they flatline on election day?
1.) I’m wrong and libertarians are just a tiny, very vocal, minority.
Maybe, but I’m not really asking why they don’t do as well as Republicans or Democrats. I’m wondering why they can’t do as well as Ralph Nader. Surely their are enough libertarians to get 3 or 4 percent of the vote, at least.
2.) Libertarians aren’t as stupid as the left. They’ll vote for the guy most amenable to them with a chance of winning. Ronald Reagan probably got quite a few libertarian votes. Given libertarian objections to Bush, I wonder how this will play out in this election. I haven’t seen any polls which show the libertarian party achieving even Nader’s tiny numbers this year.
3.) Libertarians are as stupid as the left and waste their time with relentless infighting. Any candidate who doesn’t meet some absolute unattainable standard of intellectual purity is rejected by angry ideologues.
4.) Libertarian’s anathema to the idea of government is so great they either don’t vote or at least don’t engage in the political process necessary to get their guy on ballots.
5.) The media just doesn’t track the libertarians or report their results. Even with our asinine media I have a hard time believing a party that could get, say, 3 percent of the vote would go completely unnoticed.
So any thoughts, guys?
BTW, this is the first thread I’ve started in GD.