Many of our readers are probably aware that Townhall Finance regularly features our work. John Ransom, the editor there does an excellent job and we encourage everyone to check out the site if you have not visited. It’s a very good mix of free market thinkers from different schools. Though it is generally not “libertarian.”
That is why I was particularly pleased to see this article in Townhall. A new and broad political disposition is clearly emerging. Though many longstanding libertarians would probably take issue with some of the people calling themselves “libertarians” these days, what we see is clearly progress. In the face of a very activist government (going back long before Obama) and a renaissance of constitutional understanding (largely facilitated by the Internet) more and more people are actually embracing the concept of “live and let live.”
If that result is anywhere close to accurate it means that libertarians out number both conservative and liberals among the electorate. Or perhaps more precisely, more people seem to lean libertarian than lean conservative or liberal.
So why don’t we see more elections in which a libertarian candidate is opposed by an anti-libertarian (someone who advocates more government both in the boardroom and the bedroom)? In other words, why aren’t more candidates consistently in favor of more government across the board, or less government across the board?
Think of the process of producing votes as analogous to a business producing a good or service. Just as a firm needs both capital and labor, so do political candidates.