Don't Tread On Me: A Libertarian Thread

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If you are not free to choose wrongly and irresponsibly, you are not free at all - Jacob Hornberger !http://img261.imageshack.us/img261/991/alteredstatueofliberty1tl3.png! Recently, I've gotten a little bit of heat from some of you all for my libertarian positions. I did a search, and came up with no threads on libertarianism; so, I decided to make one. Heres how I see this tread working: Every week or so I'll post a new U.S. politically related problem and explain it with my libertarian mindset. Then I'll let some of you post how your party would handle the problem. I'll respond, and we will see where the arguement leads. DISCLAIMER: My views may not match 100% with www.lp.org; however, I do not wish for you to point this out! *Topic:* The Windfall Profits Tax Barack the Magic Negro wants to implement a tax that can only be described as a great travesty to the free market economy. He wants to impose a tax on oil companies because he believes they are making too much money. He thinks that this tax will be an incentive for companies to lower their profits. I must ask: how does this make sense? Let me spell out something for some of your liberals that thing this is just a peachy plan for our economy. The windfall profits tax will achieve the exact opposite effect than the one its being marketed for. If you, the company, are having more of your money being taken away from you by the government, what do you do in order to keep the same profit margin? You increase the price of the product you're selling and pass on the cost to the consumer. We see this time, after time, after time, after time. When the government taxes an organization or puts heavier regulations on an industry the cost is passed on to us, the citizens and consumers. A windfall profits tax does nothing to help our wallets and our economic struggles; in fact, it will worsen them. What we need to do is remove the regulations and stop taxing the sellers of the goods we wish to purchase. Remove average 45.9 cent tax on every gallon purchased. More Problems: bq. What is a windfall profit anyway? Take Exxon Mobil, which reported the highest quarterly profit ever and is the main target of any windfall tax surcharge. Yet if its profits are at record highs, its tax bills are already at record highs too. Between 2003 and 2007, Exxon paid $64.7 billion in U.S. taxes, exceeding its after-tax U.S. earnings by more than $19 billion. Maybe they have in mind profit margins as a percentage of sales. Yet by that standard Exxon's profits don't seem so large. Exxon's profit margin stood at 10% for 2007. If that's what constitutes windfall profits, most of corporate America would qualify. Take aerospace or machinery - both 8.2% in 2007. Chemicals had an average margin of 12.7%. Computers: 13.7%. Electronics and appliances: 14.5%. Pharmaceuticals: 18.4% and beverages and tobacco: 19.1%. 51 Senators voted to impose a 25% windfall tax on a U.S.-based oil company whose profits grew by more than 10% in a single year. This suggests that a windfall is defined by profits growing too fast. But if 10% is the new standard, the tech industry is going to have to rethink its growth arc. So will LG, the electronics company, which saw its profits grow by 505% in 2007. Abbott Laboratories hit 110%. Berkshire Hathaway. Warren Buffett's outfit pulled in $11 billion last year, up 29% from 2006. Its profit margin - if that's the relevant figure - was 11.47%, which beats out the American oil majors. Or consider Google, which earned a mere $4.2 billion but at a whopping 25.3% margin. General Electric profits by investing in the alternative energy technology that Mr. Obama says Congress should subsidize even more heavily than it already does. GE's profit margin in 2007 was 10.3%, about the same as profiteering Exxon's. *Week of August 3* Topic: Prostitution and Organ Selling. Libertarian view point on prostitution is pretty simple. A woman has the right to sell her body to another person. If the action is voluntary I would support the woman who wishes to sell herself into sexual-slavery. Or, really, voluntary slavery of any kind for that matter. Libertarians believe that the body is private property and any other treatment is restricting free-will. One major reason prostitution is illegal currently is because of the religious nuts control over the republican party. I'd like to point out that the morality of this issue should not enter into one's decision about whether or not prostitution should be legal. Just because someone has different morals than oneself, this does not make their morals invalid. Currently, we are spending millions of dollars each year on this victim-less crime. I'd welcome any person to challenge the validity of this argument, as well as state your own reasons for or against prostitution legalization. Next issue is on a similar note. The discussion about organ selling has been a heated for quite some time. Once again, one's body is personal property, and should be treated as such. As of right now, we have thousands of Americans receiving illegal organ transplants in sub-par medical facilities. If we legalized the selling of organs, we would improve the quality of life for thousands if not millions of Americans. No more unnecessarily long waiting lists for a kidney or part of a liver. We would also save the hundreds of people who sell their organs on the black market and subsequently die because of poor medical care in the third-world hospitals that are the only ones who willingly preform such procedures. Once again, I welcome any challengers. *Week of July 14* Topic: Forced Regulation Alrighty, I'm gonna set us off on a different topic. I walked into my local Lowe's Foods to grab some bread and milk. I got what I needed and headed to the cash register. The woman rang up the two items and announced how much money she needed from me. I had to ask her three times how much she wanted and almost laughed at the ridiculous price. One gallon of milk + One loaf of bread = $7.49. I walked out of the store basically in shock that these two items beat out the better part of a ten dollar bill. I remember when I could get both of these items for three bucks! Food is getting ridiculously expensive. The source of the inflation is obviously the government and their frivolous monetary policy; but, that's not really what I want to talk about. I was thinking about all the regulations these food companies have placed on them by the government. I flipped over the loaf of bread and found the 'Nutrition' panel. So basically, I want to talk about how the government's forcing of nutrition facts on foods is unnecessary and unconstitutional. I would support the removal of these nutrition labels and other such information such as the ingredients list unless a private company chooses to voluntarily provide such information. Would anyone care to argue for keeping this information? I realize this topic is somewhat insignificant, but the thread's moving pretty slow... *Week of May 26-June16* Topic: S.S. and DoE Libertarians want the privatization of both government programs. *Week of May 19* Topic: Responsibility This one was inspired by the current discussion in the legalization of marijuana thread. Personal responsibility is discouraged by government denying individuals the opportunity to exercise it. In fact, the denial of freedom fosters irresponsibility. Individuals should be free to make choices for themselves and to accept responsibility for the consequences of the choices they make. We should accept the right of others to choose for themselves if we are to have the same right. My support of an individual's right to make choices in life does not mean that I necessarily approve or disapprove of those choices. I believe people must accept personal responsibility for the consequences of their actions. Libertarian policies will promote a society where people are free to make and learn from their own decisions. We should repeal all laws that presume government knows better than the individual how to run that person’s life. Encourage private sector dissemination of information to help consumers make informed decisions on products and services. Enforce laws against fraud and misrepresentation. *Week of May 19* Topic: Monetary Policy (or Fiscal Policy) of the Government Anyone remember the gold standard? Well, it was a time when our dollar actually was worth something. The time of a twenty for an ounce are long gone. I think that it is essential for the advancement of the dollar for it to be backed by actual universal currency (such as gold or silver). For starters, we need to stop the printing of money immediately (with the exception of replacing old bills). The current policy of the government goes something like this: We are in trillions of dollars in debt? Well, fire up those printing presses! We are in need of another school? Well, fire up those printing presses! We are in need of another fighter jet? Well, fire up those printing presses! I believe the constant fabrication of more and more money is largely to blame for falling dollar values and our current economic status. *Week of May 19th* Topic: Involutary Services Any form of coerced national service program is a type of involuntary servitude. Examples include conscription into the military and compulsory youth labor programs. Coerced national service programs presume the government can claim ownership of the lives of individuals. Such programs are a form of involuntary servitude and are a clear violation of the US Constitution 13th Amendment. All forms of national service should be staffed by willing participants without the need for conscription or other means of mandating such service. When people perceive a just cause, history has shown that they willingly volunteer to serve. All schemes for automatic registration through government invasions of the privacy of school, motor vehicle or other records should be immediately eliminated. The still-functioning elements of the Selective Service System should be abolished and all associated records should be destroyed. The President should immediately pardon, providing unconditional exoneration, for all who have been accused or convicted of draft evasion, desertion from the military in cases of conscription or fraud and other acts of civil resistance. *Week of May 19th* Topic: Right to Property The right to property and its physical resources, which is the fundamental cornerstone of a free and prosperous society, has been severely compromised by government at all levels. Public Policy instruments including eminent domain, zoning laws, building codes, rent control, regional planning, property taxes, resource management and public health legislation remove property rights from owners and transfer them to the State, while raising costs of property ownership. Public ownership of real property, beyond that which is explicitly authorized in the Constitution, and claims against resources both owned and unowned (such as the oceans) is illegitimate and creates scarcity and conflict where none would otherwise exist. Only individuals and private entities should have the full right to control, use, dispose of, or in any manner enjoy their property without interference, until and unless the exercise of their control infringes on the valid rights of others. Resource management and planning are the responsibility and right of the legitimate owners of land, water and other natural resources. Individuals have the right to homestead unowned resources, both within the jurisdictions of governments and within such unclaimed territory as the ocean, Antarctica and extraterrestrial bodies. All public lands and resources, as well as claims thereto, except as explicitly allowed by the Constitution, should be returned to private ownership, with the proceeds of sale going to retire public liabilities. All publicly owned infrastructures including dams and parks should be returned to private ownership and all taxing authority for such public improvements should end. Property related services should be supplied by private markets and paid for by user fees, and regulation of property should be limited to that which secures the rights of individuals. There will be no legal barriers to peaceful, private, voluntary attempts to explore, industrialize and colonize any extra-terrestrial resources. The federal government should be held as liable as any individual for pollution or other transgression against property or resources. We should rescind all taxation of real property. Property, resources and rights taken from their legitimate owners by government or by government supported private action, shall be restored to the rightful owners. Reverse the Supreme Court decision regarding eminent domain - Kelo v City of New London. Repeal all legislation that transfers property rights to the state, including those enacted in the name of aesthetic values, risk, moral standards, cost-benefit estimates, the promotion or restriction of economic growth, health or national security claims. End all federal agencies that own, regulate or administer property, as well as agencies at the local level which exercise control over private property and resources. *Week of May 12* Topic: Abortion/Reproductive Rights The tragedies caused by unplanned, unwanted pregnancies are aggravated and sometimes created by government policies of censorship, restriction, regulation and prohibition. Recognizing that abortion is a sensitive issue and that people can hold good-faith views on both sides, we believe that government should be kept out of the matter, leaving the question to each person for their conscientious consideration. Individual rights should not be denied nor abridged on the basis of sex, age, dependency, or location. Taxpayers should not be forced to pay for other people’s abortions, nor should any government or individual force a woman to have an abortion. It is the right and obligation of the pregnant woman regardless of age, not the state, to decide the desirability or appropriateness of prenatal testing, Caesarean births, fetal surgery, voluntary surrogacy arrangements and/or home births. I oppose government actions that either compel or prohibit abortion, sterilization or any other form of birth control. Specifically I condemn the practice of forced sterilization of welfare recipients, or of mentally retarded or “genetically defective” individual. I oppose government laws and policies that restrict the opportunity to choose alternatives to abortion. We should put an end to all subsidies for childbearing or child prevention built into our present laws. *Week of May 12* Topic: Bill of Rights O.K. I was watching the news yesterday, and I flipped to a channel where a woman was shouting about how the government wasn’t providing her family with enough food stamps and how she had the right to food. I got to thinking about it and this sort of argument gets raised a lot. “I have the right to this, or that.” I just thought I’d make a list of all the things I’d heard and outline rights that citizens claim, but don’t actually have. 1. An American Citizen does not have the right to be supported by the government through welfare or food stamps 2. An American Citizen does not have the right to a college education 3. An American Citizen does not have the right to Healthcare, Medicaid, or Medicare 4. An American Citizen does not have the right to be protected by censorship, testing of products (FDA and the alike), or any other form of consumer protection 5. An American Citizen does not have the right to have their retirement planed for them (S.S.) Well, I’m sure that there are many more “rights” like these, but, I can’t think of any right now. (Feel free to post your own if you can think of any) *Week of May 12* Topic: Immigration Our borders are currently neither open, closed, nor secure. This situation restricts the labor pool, encouraging employers to hire undocumented workers, while leaving those workers neither subject to nor protected by the law. A completely open border allows foreign criminals, carriers of communicable diseases, terrorists and other potential threats to enter the country unchecked. Pandering politicians guarantee access to public services for undocumented aliens, to the detriment of those who would enter to work productively, and increasing the burden on taxpayers. The legitimate function and obligation of government to protect the lives, rights and property of its citizens, requires awareness of and control over the entry into our country of foreign nationals who pose a threat to security, health or property. Political freedom and escape from tyranny demands that individuals not be unreasonably constrained by government in the crossing of political boundaries. Economic freedom demands the unrestricted movement of human as well as financial capital across national borders. Borders should be secure, with free entry to those who have demonstrated compliance with certain requirements. The terms and conditions of entry into the United States must be simple and clearly spelled out. Documenting the entry of individuals must be restricted to screening for criminal background and threats to public health and national security. It is the obligation of the prospective immigrant to demonstrate compliance with these requirements. Once effective immigration policies are in place, general amnesties will no longer be necessary. What to do? Ensure immigration requirements include only appropriate documentation, screening for criminal background and threats to public health and national security. Simplifying the immigration process and redeployment of surveillance technology to focus on the borders will encourage the use of regular and monitored entry points, thus preventing trespass and saving lives. End federal requirements that benefits and services be provided to those in the country illegally. Repeal all measures that punish employers for hiring undocumented workers. Repeal all immigration quotas. *Week of May 12* Topic: Foreign Affairs American foreign policy should seek an America at peace with the world and the defense - against attack from abroad - of the lives, liberty, and property of the American people on American soil. Provision of such defense must respect the individual rights of people everywhere. The principle of non-intervention should guide relationships between governments. The United States government should return to the historic libertarian tradition of avoiding entangling alliances, abstaining totally from foreign quarrels and imperialist adventures, and recognizing the right to unrestricted trade, travel, and immigration. *Week of April 28* Topic: Marriage Marriage is personal, spiritual and economic relationship, one of the most important building blocks in cementing commitment and stability between two people. On a personal level, hundreds of thousands of couples in North Carolina think of themselves as "married", without outside endorsement. On a spiritual level, your church or other group of like-minded people are free to extend or withhold the sanction of marriage. But only the state can extend, or forbid, the economic components of marriage by granting its endorsement to marriage's contractual elements. Access to insurance, to family benefits, power of attorney, next-of-kin relations in time of illness or death: all these have to do only with the contract of marriage. Libertarians have traditionally championed the sanctity of contract, and the capacity of free and responsible adults to enter into enforceable contracts without state interference, and with the expectation that the state will act to recognize and enforce the terms of that contract. The purely contractual portion of marriage is no different. I would support legislation that allows legal civil unions between same sex couples, under the same conditions that this contract is offered to female/male couples. The point is this: no one can dictate the personal life of our citizens. The state cannot tell churches or spiritual groups to award or withhold a sacrament or ritual of marriage. But neither can churches require that the state deny the economic benefits of the civil union contract to citizens. *Week of April 28* Topic: Affirmative Action Affirmative action is one of the most unconstitutional policies I have ever seen. Minorities automatically get the upper hand when applying to college/jobs. Racism is simply an ugly form of collectivism; the mindset that views humans as strictly members of groups rather than individuals. By encouraging America to adopt a group mentality, the advocates of so-called "diversity" actually perpetuate racism. Their obsession with racial group identity is inherently racist. We should understand that racism will endure until we stop thinking in terms of groups and begin thinking in terms of individual liberty. *Week of April 28* Topic: Second Amendment Governments at all levels often violate their citizens’ right of self defense with laws that restrict, limit or outright prohibit the ownership and use of firearms. These “gun control” laws are often justified by the mistaken premise that they will lead to a reduction in the level of violence in our society. The Bill of Rights recognizes that an armed citizenry is essential to a free society. I affirm the right to keep and bear arms. I oppose all laws at any level of government restricting, regulating or requiring the ownership, manufacture, transfer or sale of firearms or ammunition. I oppose all laws requiring registration of firearms or ammunition. I support repeal of all gun control laws. I want the immediate abolition of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms. I oppose any government efforts to ban or restrict the use of tear gas, "mace" or other self-protection devices. I further oppose all attempts to ban weapons or ammunition on the grounds that they are risky or unsafe. I favor the repeal of laws banning the concealment of weapons or prohibiting pocket weapons. I also oppose the banning of inexpensive handguns ("Saturday night specials") and semi-automatic or so-called assault weapons and their magazines or feeding devices. (Already been over the nuke thing, so I'd rather not go through that discussion again. However, feel free to question any of my statement.) *Week of April 28* Topic: Freedom of Communication I oppose any abridgment of the freedom of speech through government censorship, regulation or control of communications media, including, but not limited to, laws concerning: a) Obscenity, including "pornography", as I hold this to be an abridgment of liberty of expression despite claims that it instigates rape or assault, or demeans and slanders women; b) Reception and storage equipment, such as digital audio tape recorders and radar warning devices, and the manufacture of video terminals by telephone companies; c) Electronic bulletin boards, communications networks, and other interactive electronic media as I hold them to be the functional equivalent of speaking halls and printing presses in the age of electronic communications, and as such deserving of full freedom; d) Electronic newspapers, electronic "Yellow Pages", file libraries, websites, and other new information media, as these deserve full freedom; e) Commercial speech or advertising. I oppose speech codes at all schools that are primarily tax funded. Language that is deemed offensive to certain groups is not a cause for legal action. I strongly oppose the government's burgeoning practice of invading newsrooms, or the premises of other innocent third parties, in the name of law enforcement. I oppose court orders gagging news coverage of criminal proceedings -- the right to publish and broadcast must not be abridged merely for the convenience of the judicial system. I deplore any efforts to impose thought control on the media, either by the use of anti-trust laws, or by any other government action in the name of stopping "bias." I defend the rights of individuals to unrestricted freedom of speech, freedom of the press and the right of individuals to dissent from government itself. I recognize that full freedom of expression is possible only as part of a system of full property rights. The freedom to use one's own voice; the freedom to hire a hall; the freedom to own a printing press, a broadcasting station, or a transmission cable; the freedom to host and publish information on the Internet; the freedom to wave or burn one's own flag; and similar property-based freedoms are precisely what constitute freedom of communication. At the same time, I recognize that freedom of communication does not extend to the use of other people's property to promote one's ideas without the voluntary consent of the owners. I would provide for free market ownership of airwave frequencies, deserving of full First Amendment protection. I oppose government ownership or subsidy of, or funding for, any communications organization. I shall not be satisfied until the First Amendment is expanded to protect full, unconditional freedom of communication. I support the abolition of the Federal Communications Commission. *Week of April 21* Topic: Monopolies/Public Services Federal, state and local governments have created inefficient service monopolies throughout the economy. From the US Postal Service to garbage collection and water works, government is forcing citizens to use monopoly services. These are services that the private sector is already capable of providing in a manner that gives the public better service at a competitive price. A free and competitive market allocates resources in the most efficient manner. Consumers of services should not have their choices arbitrarily limited by law. Libertarian policies will seek to divest government of all functions that can be provided by non-governmental organizations or private individuals. We need to end the Postal Service's monopoly and allow for the free competition in all aspects of mail delivery. State and local monopoly services should be opened to free-market competition. Local and state governments can auction assets such as utility systems and landfills to private industry, thereby immediately reducing the tax burden on their citizens. *Week of April 21* Topic: The Right to Privacy Whenever the U.S. enters a time of crisis or economic hardship, politicians step up to little by little steal your rights away. For example, on September 11, 2001, two planes hit the World Trade Center towers killing more than 3,000. The first thing that I thought when I heard the news was there goes our civil liberties. And sure enough, President Bush would step up to take them from us. During the Bush Administration, the Department of Homeland Security was created in 2003 to effectively spy on the law-abiding citizens of this country. Privacy protections have been eroded gradually over many years. The Social Security Number has become a universal ID number, causing rampant and massive identity theft. Government routinely keeps records on the bank accounts, travel plans, and spending habits of law-abiding civilians, for no other reason than they “might” commit a crime in the future. The individual's right to privacy, property, and right to speak or not to speak should not be infringed by the government. The government should not use electronic or other means of covert surveillance of an individual's actions or private property without the consent of the owner or occupant. Correspondence, bank and other financial transactions and records, doctors' and lawyers' communications, employment records, and the like should not be open to review by government without the consent of all parties involved in those actions. We support the protections provided by the Fourth Amendment and oppose any government use of search warrants to examine or seize materials belonging to innocent third parties. We oppose all restrictions and regulations on the private development, sale, and use of encryption technology. We also oppose government classification of civilian research on encryption methods. If a private employer screens prospective or current employees via questionnaires, polygraph tests, urine tests for drugs, blood tests for AIDS, or other means, this is a condition of that employer's labor contracts. Such screening does not violate the rights of employees, who have the right to boycott such employers if they choose. We oppose the issuance by the government of an identity card, to be required for any purpose, such as employment, voting, or border crossing. We further oppose the nearly universal requirement for use of the Social Security Number as a personal identification code, whether by government agencies or by intimidation of private companies by governments. We also oppose police roadblocks aimed at randomly, and without probable cause, testing drivers for intoxication and police practices to stop mass transit vehicles and search passengers without probable cause. So long as the National Census and all federal, state, and other government agencies' compilations of data on an individual continue to exist, they should be conducted only with the consent of the persons from whom the data is sought. We oppose government regulations that require employers to provide health insurance coverage for employees, which often encourage unnecessary intrusions by employers into the privacy of their employees. *Week of April 14* Topic: War on Drugs The suffering that drug misuse has brought about is obvious; however, drug prohibition causes more harm than drugs themselves. The so-called “War on Drugs” is in reality a war against the American people, our Constitution and the Bill of Rights. It is a grave threat to individual liberty. Individuals should have the right to use drugs, whether for medical or recreational purposes, without fear of legal reprisals, but must be held legally responsible for the consequences of their actions only if they violate others’ rights. Social involvement by individuals is essential to address the problem of substance misuse and abuse. Popular education and assistance groups are a better approach than prohibition, and I support the activities of private organizations as the best way to move forward. Repeal all laws establishing criminal or civil penalties for the use of drugs. Repeal laws that infringe upon individual rights to be secure in our persons, homes, and property as protected by the Fourth Amendment. Stop prosecuting accused non-violent drug offenders, and pardon those previously convicted. or *Week of April 14th* Topic: Crime Government's ability to protect the rights and property of individuals from crimes of violence and fraud is compromised because resources are focused on vice rather than on real crimes. Laws that are called "victimless crimes" turn those who simply conduct voluntary actions and exercise free choice into criminals. This results in the United States having one of the highest percentages of the population in prison of any country in the world; yet real crime remains prevalent in many parts of the country. Government exists to protect the rights of every individual including life, liberty and property. Criminal laws should be limited to violation of the rights of others through force or fraud, or deliberate actions that place others involuntarily at significant risk of harm. Individuals retain the right to voluntarily assume risk of harm to themselves in the exercise of free choice. The appropriate way for the federal government to address crime is through consistent and impartial enforcement of laws that protect individual rights. The law enforcement resources can be used most efficiently if limited to appropriate federal concerns. Limiting law enforcement to true crime will restore respect for the law and those who enforce it. I propose to immediately reform the justice system's mandatory sentencing policies to ensure that violent offenders are not released from jail to make room for non-violent offenders. Repeal criminal laws which work against the protection of the rights and freedom of American citizens, particularly laws which create a crime where no victim exists. *Week of April 7* Topic: Health Care My view on Health Care is somewhat harsh. Heres my plan: Do Nothing! Health Care has been a major point for the democratic candidates running for office; however, I don't agree with their "solutions." First off, I would like to address the principle of the matter in my eyes. The government has two roles in my mind: 1) Collecting taxes to power the military, and 2) Enforcing current laws. Playing the role of "Robin Hood" is *not* the role of the U.S. national govenment as defined by the constitution. I strongly disagree with the collection of taxes to pay for a service that the government gives to all citizens. Second problem is this: both Obama and Clinton propose HC plans that they estimate will cost over $200 billion dollars. This money will come directly from taxpayers' wallets and will end up partially benefiting those citizens who *don't* pay taxes. Plus, if you consider how well Social Security has worked out (complete sarcasm for those who don't know), we can figure on paying billions more dollars to keep the HC plan floating. Also, I hear a lot of talk about how long people have to wait to get treatment, and how Universal Health Care will fix this. This makes no sense to me; if we have everyone and his brother flocking to a hospital to treat every sprained ankle or bad cut, then the lines will be incredibly long and those who actually need treatment may end up neglected. *also*, feel free to discuss this: *Week of April 7* Topic: Violation of Civil Liberties This probably the biggest thing for me, so I'll start off with it. The government has thousands of laws that dictate how its citizens live their lives. Because of this, America is not actually a free country. The main thing I'd like to discuss are "prevention" laws. Prevention laws are created by the government in order to prevent a certain scenario from occurring. Such laws I do not believe in, and I believe are unconstitutional. For example, I do not believe in an arrest for driving over the legal alcohol limit. There is no reason for arrest, considering you have not infringed upon the liberties or free will of other citizens. You have not damaged property, or hurt/killed anyone. Also, I believe that citizens should be able to smoke anywhere they would like to. Here in Charlotte, lawmakers are pushing to make smoking on public streets a crime. It is my free will to walk down the street with a cigarette in my mouth, and if someone else does not want to get "second-hand smoke" (complete B.S. btw), then he/she can walk past, fall back, or cross the street. Also, I don't agree in gun control laws because they are also implemented in order to prevent certain crimes. I believe that the law-abiding citizen should be able to own automatic weapons, and operate them in the safety of their own property. Well, these are just some of the prevention laws that are forced on the citizens of this country. I'd like to hear your opinions on such laws, or feel free to post your own that you feel unjust. My solution: Until these laws are repealed, America will never be a completely free nation. I suggest the immediate repealing of such laws.
 
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I don’t think this is a good issue to start with, since prevention laws aren’t really an issue to the majority of Americans who (presumably) agree with them. You’re just going to get a bunch of posts saying, “I’m a Democrat/Republican, and my stance is that everything’s fine how it is.”

I’m personally more libertarian than the average American on the issues you’ve described, though. I won’t go as far as saying that we shouldn’t have laws against drunk driving (I’d personally rather live in a world that acts to prevent drunk driving than a world where I’m free to do so), but I will agree that our current drunk driving laws are way too strict. It’s really not hard to reach .08% at all, and when you do, it’s likely that your driving abilities are impaired pretty negligibly. The official word from our police force is that you’re twice as likely to get into an accident with .08% blood alcohol. Really? That’s it? That’s the best you guys can come up with? You’re twice as likely to get into an accident driving 10 miles instead of 5. Hell, I’m probably 3 times as likely to get into an accident if I’m flipping through the radio.

Most of us know someone (or know someone who knows someone) who got a DUI (and all of its harshness) off of one or two drinks, when he/she probably didn’t even think he/she was over the limit, and probably not a danger to anyone else. I personally think that the legal limit should be doubled, but I won’t go as far as to say it should be ditched entirely.

Regarding smoking, I’ve never smoked myself, but I can understand how smokers would be annoyed, especially in California, where bar owners aren’t allowed to let people smoke in their private business.

And even though I’m a Democrat who’s never owned a gun in his life, I’m also against gun control. If a criminal wants me dead, I’m dead. It’s that simple. Whether he breaks into my house with a knife or an assault rifle, odds are good that I’m not going to stand a chance either way. On top of that, the government doesn’t go a good job of enforcing this law anyway (except against law-abiding citizens), and, really, I’d probably sleep safer at night knowing that a criminal might think I have an assault rifle in my house than knowing that the government made a half-assed attempt to keep one from him.

Anyway, don’t cherry-pick topics that are so easy to side with libertarians on. Let’s hear the official libertarian stance on health care. :-P

 
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Regarding smoking, I’ve never smoked myself, but I can understand how smokers would be annoyed, especially in California, where bar owners aren’t allowed to let people smoke in their private business.

Private buisness is a completely different matter. It is up to the buisness owner to dictate who can/cannot enter their buisness. Although I think this is wrong, I don’t have a problem with it.

Anyway, don’t cherry-pick topics that are so easy to side with libertarians on. Let’s hear the official libertarian stance on health care. :-P

lol! Yeah, I was starting easy! Give me a sec. and I’ll update my post.

 
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Private buisness is a completely different matter. It is up to the buisness owner to dictate who can/cannot enter their buisness. Although I think this is wrong, I don’t have a problem with it.

I think you misunderstand. In California, you’re not allowed to smoke in a bar at all, whether the bar owner wants to allow it or not.

 
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Yup, there are city/state laws that overrides whether the owner allows certain activities or not. While business owners can dictate who can or cannot enter their business, smoking is not allowed in a bar in California. Much like smoking indoors in Ontario, Canada (or is it across Canada?)

 
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Hmmm… not too sure. I’m in Ontario as well. But yeah we can basically only smoke outdoors. It’s so weird when I travel such as Europe and all I see is people smoking, although they have dedicated zones. Even in the airport.

Drunk driving would get your arrested in Canada but I think the blood alcohol limit is different. But the most you would stay in jail is like a day.

 
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I think you misunderstand. In California, you’re not allowed to smoke in a bar at all, whether the bar owner wants to allow it or not.

Oh, well then if it evolves regulation of private buisness by the government then I pretty much don’t agree with it.
BTW, I’m almost done with my post which I am including a Health Care argument section. My thoughts are pretty jumbled up, so give me a minute to edit it.

 
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Alrighty, I’ve updated my original post to include my views on Health Care and Civil Liberties. Feel free to challenge my opinions on either topic.

 
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Oh, well then if it evolves regulation of private buisness by the government then I pretty much don’t agree with it.

Yeah, I think private business owners should be able to regulate there own rules, as long as the rules don’t infringe the actual rules that exist within the state or province.

 
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Yeah, I think private business owners should be able to regulate there own rules, as long as the rules don’t infringe the actual rules that exist within the state or province.

I’m going to go ahead and step out on a limb here. This may offend some people, however it is a common libertarian view.

I feel that the buisness should be able to refuse buisness to anyone based on anything. This includes gender, race, or religion. If the government would step out of the regulation buisness, I think we would have a much more tolerant society. For instance, if a buisness claims they will not serve black people, then the consumer will protest by not shopping there. However wrong it is to place a sign like this outside a buisness, I feel that it should still be a right reserved to the buisness owner.

 
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Thats horrible, I have nothing else to say.

 
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I’m a libertarian, and my view on health care is that public health care is a disastrously bad idea – see e.g. Canada. A much better idea is spending tax money to give everyone health insurance. I expect my government to help people when utter disaster strikes, such as a hurricane; I don’t see a severe health concern as different. Note that once you let the government have a vested interest in the health of its citizens, laws I normally oppose which only prevent someone from hurting him or herself, such as motorcycle helmet laws, become no longer inherently nonsensical. I think the best way to deal with THAT is to simply make abiding by rules like that necessary for the insurance to apply; so, your government health insurance won’t fix that broken leg if you weren’t wearing a helmet, by example.

On the other hand, I also see plenty of merit in simply leaving health care alone; it’s no news to anyone that wealthier people can buy more stuff. It’s inherent to capitalism. While some things clearly shouldn’t be subject to this – rich people shouldn’t be able to buy better justice, for example, hence government-appointed lawyers – I’m not so certain I have a problem with rich people affording more health. I am also a big, big fan of letting people have the right to be miserable, so if a wealthy person chooses not to buy said health, I don’t know that I’m interested in providing it with tax dollars.

To be honest, I’d probably go with the second way unless it turned out that my country simply wasn’t functioning – that is, it turned out that health care, like the justice system, simply couldn’t tenably be handled by capitalism – in which case I’d switch to providing insurance. Under no circumstances would I provide health care itself.

 
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Also, I agree with Bong on the refusing business thing. It’s a freedom of speech issue, I suppose, and while I disagree e.g. with the KKK, who hate me because I am jewish, I am absolutely opposed to making it illegal for them to hold their opinion, or even for them to voice said opinion. If they start inciting riots, or asking people to kill me, then I have a problem, but not until then. Similarly, if a business is privately owned, I think the owner should be allowed to serve exactly who they like and no one else; it’s no one’s business but theirs who they serve. Like Bong said, you can vote with your money and take your business elsewhere; you have as much right NOT to eat there as they have not to serve you.

 
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I actually agree with BongHits. It’s really not the government’s place to force business transactions when one party doesn’t want to accept an arrangement. It also shouldn’t be the government’s place to decide which reasons are appropriate and which are not.

Also, reminds me of this Onion article: http://www.theonion.com/content/node/28259

 
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I actually agree with BongHits

What?!? We agree on something? Thats unheard of! lol

I love the onion – radio and video news broadcasts are particularly funny.

you can vote with your money and take your business elsewhere; you have as much right NOT to eat there as they have not to serve you.

Couldn’t have put it better!

Thats horrible, I have nothing else to say.

Whats horrible? Free speech? Free thought?

 
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What’s wrong with public health care? Only negatives are long line ups for transplants for organs and such but you can just go abroad and get them done. I mean it shouldn’t cost you anything to go for a checkup with the doctor.

I’m a little curious but do you have to pay for vaccinations and such?

Whats horrible? Free speech? Free thought? ‘Cause these all seem like pluses to me.

What about equal rights? Nothing wrong with free speech. Just your statement, I don’t agree. You should assume there’s gonna be people who disagree and agree with you.

 
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Only negatives are long line ups for transplants for organs and such but you can just go abroad and get them done.

You think that having Universal Health Care will solve this problem? Unfortunately, having more people on the list does not make more organs available.

I mean it shouldn’t cost you anything to go for a checkup with the doctor.

Yeah, it should. Its called capitalism, and currently it runs our society. You have to pay for things that are a privilege.

I’m a little curious but do you have to pay for vaccinations and such?

Not quite getting your point.

What about equal rights?

If you really want equality you must start with tolerance. Equality cannot be forced upon citizens; there will only be true equality if the people are the ones acting for it.

You should assume there’s gonna be people who disagree and agree with you.

Yes, I respect your right to disagree. I was just asking you to explain your statement with a little more detail.

 
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I guess my views are more cultural then political. We pay for our health care through taxes. I didn’t say it would solve the problems for Americans but I’m just saying there’s nothing wrong with it.

If you really want equality you must start with tolerance. Equality cannot be forced upon citizens; there will only be true equality if the people are the once acting for it.

I don’t know how it is in the US but equal-rights should be accepted. It definitely shouldn’t be forced.

Not quite getting your point.

So on alot of things that are required in to live you have to pay. Such as vaccines, medical checkups etc. You should have the right to live and it shouldn’t affect how much money you make or have. I’m pretty sure that not everyone can afford health insurance in the US. Prisoners get free health care, even terrorists do. Why shouldn’t you?

 
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You have to pay for things that are a privilege.

Now that indirectly raises an interesting question. Is good health a privilege, or is it a right? Is being able to take preventative steps (like getting checkups) a privilege, or is it a right?

The thing is, nowadays we generate enough wealth that we could probably afford to make good health a right. Should we?

 
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Shouldn’t it be? I mean every human being has the right to live. Money shouldn’t get in the way of that.

 
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Yeah, but the libertarian viewpoint seems to be that only people who can afford to get preventative care should get it. Even though that causes a net increase in the amount of money wasted on medicine.

Honestly, I believe that health care is one of the few things the government should take care of. It’s one of those things everyone needs, but it’s infeasible to let people have a choice – like roads or public utilities. After all, when you break your leg, you’re going to want to go to the nearest hospital capable of treating you; you’re not gonna ask for some painkillers and spend a couple of days researching hospitals.

 
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I guess I should be grateful in someways. Prescribed medicine is free for us as well.

 
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Hmm… I haven’t heard of this “Libertarianism”… can someone simply explain?

 
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Libertarian

1. One who advocates maximizing individual rights and minimizing the role of the state. 2. One who believes in free will.
 
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Free will is good… but only to an extent. To be honest, I’d be a problem with total, absolute free will, i’d have probably killed some of teh bullies I’d had to deal with in school. In fact, taht would probably change the entire world, and I doubt for teh better. Then again… it can’t get much worse. Thanks Kshar.