Friday, December 28, 2012

Ron Paul and the Rebirth of Common Sense

So there is a great article that talks about Ron Paul's criticism of the left's and the right's knee-jerk reactions to the Newtown tragedy. My post isn't about that horrible day or even Mr. Paul's response. I want to use this as a really good example of why I am a Libertarian.

I assume that most people think that Libertarians don't give a crap about anybody and that it is a very "me first" outlook. I probably won't be able to dissuade you if you connect your political view to your personal view of the world. I believe that there should be more money given to the poor and more opportunities to the less fortunate, that we should support research and promote peace throughout the world. I just think that the government is the worst way to do it. Republicans say things like that, but they lust for just as much power as anyone else. Democrats claim to want what is in everyone else's best interest, but they do it by taking away people's freedoms, or only supporting the rights of those they deem worthy. I could cite you a bibliography of all the great thinkers I've read that have convinced me that individual freedom and a free society is the only way to progress in human society. What the hell, here's a few: Nietzsche, Popper, Kant, Sartre, Franklin, Jefferson...

This brings me back to Paul. He criticized the right for wanting to put armed guards in schools, he criticized the left for wanting to curb people's gun rights. He and I agree on one big thing here. Government intervention is not the answer. There needs to be a voice of dissension when both side are selling you the same answer from different ends. The real words behind the rhetoric coming from both sides is, "Give us more power, by relinquishing yours, and we'll keep everyone safe and sound."  We have become two very bad things as a society. One that looks for instant gratification (the same satisfaction that sent into two unwinable wars) and a society that looks to others, particularly authority figures to bring us that gratification. We are becoming a nation of lap dogs, waiting for our owners to open the door so we can go outside, when we have the ability to open it ourselves. The world of freedom and self-actualization is out there if we can only accept that exploration involves danger and risk and that we will never insulate ourselves from that even if we decide to hide in our "caves".