I’ve had an idea kicking around in my head for a little while. Liberaltarianism. Not really an original thought, since various liberal bloggers out there occasionally bring it up. Here’s a recent one from Matthew Yglesias.
The idea in Yglesias’ post seems to be that many libertarians share some views with conservatives (low taxes, business friendly regulations, school choice, guns), but they also share other views with liberals (foreign policy, civil liberties, gay rights, drugs, immigration, abortion, torture and the death penalty). The inherent complaint is that the conservative/libertarian ideas get all the think tank money and media attention, while the liberaltarian issues don’t get much play. I agree.
For a while now, I have considered myself a pretty straightforward liberal (for political purposes). At the same time, I’ve used the liberaltarian issues listed above as a club to beat the hypocrisy drum whenever my conservative friends want to stray over into the “Both parties are terrible; I’m for personal liberty” area. I think I’m going to keep doing that. Maybe even a little more. But I’m going to try and focus for a while on liberaltarian issues here. Not that I’m going to abandon my team – I’m still going to be a partisan Democrat. I just think I’ll start pushing the liberaltarian thing a little bit and see if I can help that idea grow in my own modest way. In case you were wondering.