If Not Hillary, Who? A Libertarian?

LibertarianHillary got the Democratic nomination but some progressives still cry, “Never Hillary!”

If not Hillary, who?

Some pledge to vote Libertarian. Odd. Libertarians are nearly the opposite of progressives.

Libertarians typically believe government should be involved only in defense, police and the courts.

  • No environmental regulation
  • No public schools, community colleges, state colleges or universities
  • No financial aid for college
  • No Social Security
  • No Medicare
  • No Affordable Care (universal healthcare)
  • No legislating civil rights or women’s rights
  • Etc.

Progressives believe in all of those things.

Libertarians also believe that the more equality you have the more liberty you lose.

But that is only true for the privileged. As women, minorities, and the poor gain equality, they also gain in liberty.

Voting libertarian retains power for the powerful.

There are other choices, though, right?

You can vote Green. But that risks moving the country right — the opposite direction from what progressives want. More on that later.

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About BroadBlogs

I have a Ph.D. from UCLA in sociology (emphasis: gender, social psych). I currently teach sociology and women's studies at Foothill College in Los Altos Hills, CA. I have also lectured at San Jose State. And I have blogged for Feminispire, Ms. Magazine, The Good Men Project and Daily Kos. Also been picked up by The Alternet.

Posted on August 19, 2016, in politics/class inequality and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. 24 Comments.

  1. I’d rather have Gary Johnson than Trump or Clinton and though he’s libertarian, he has some liberal sides to him. So I don’t think he’s all in that direction like others.

    • But then you aren’t a progressive.

      It’s true that libertarians have a liberal side in that they don’t want any laws that harm women and people of color. But they don’t want any laws that help them, either. So no civil rights legislation.

      It has the effect of keeping the powerful powerful. Which you might even like if you are in a powerful group.

      • Hillary is known as a war mongerer, and with so many scandals. Regardless of what has happened, sometimes you have to think when there is that much smoke or so often, there has to be fire. I doubt she actually cares about the middle class and has actually said bad things against minorities too before running for president. She also knew about her husband’s sexual assaults early in his political career when he was governor in Arkansas, but apparently it was fine for her. I wonder what a feminist she is when she’s just ignored bill clintons past actions. Not just monica and she most likely has stuck with him and ignored more serious stuff because it would hurt her to ever be in a position of power. Bill Clinton provided that opportunity. She also goes by the college free motto. Which means some that are working hard and good citizens get paid for but others who aren”t as well. Meanwhile the middle class is squeezed enough as it is. Plus it’s not going to be free, but decent, hard working people pay the taxes to provide this “free college”. How nice of her. She wants to do this, I sawyshe and other politicians pay for it.

      • As I said to Lynn, I don’t see her as a warmonger. She did recommend invading Libya, but that’s because she was trying to stop human rights violations like Rwanda. And she says that her vote on 9/11 was wrong, given that Bush chose to go to war — so she can admit error.

        What Congressional Republicans want is for people to believe that someone is guilty because they have been accused. So they keep up the scandal-mongering, because it works.

        But if you actually look at the facts, it’s more smoke and mirrors than smoke and fire.

        Same thing happened with the witch trials. The community would get worked up until everyone believed the woman was a witch and she got killed. Even though she wasn’t a witch.

        I’m not surprised that Hillary didn’t believe the accusations against Bill because so many false accusations had been thrown at her — accusations that she KNEW were false. And I don’t think she should be punished for his sins now.

        I believe she cares about the middle-class because — well, she’s a Democrat. Democrats have always worked for the middle class. At the time Bill ran for office in ’92 she and Bill would have had an easier time if they had run as Republicans because Ronald Reagan was so popular at the time. Which is why he had to move to the center to get elected.

        Here are the plans from Clinton and Trump. Libertarians don’t believe in government for anything so they won’t do anything.

        Clinton v Trump: Plan to get Americans back to work:
        Clinton: Workers share in profits they help create, infrastructure, etc. paid for by taxes on wealthy.
        Trump: infrastructure, etc, but can’t pay for it. He wants less tax on wealthy
        http://www.nytimes.com/2016/08/12/opinion/hillary-clintons-plan-for-a-fair-economy.html?action=click&pgtype=Homepage&clickSource=story-heading&module=opinion-c-col-right-region&region=opinion-c-col-right-region&WT.nav=opinion-c-col-right-region

        Free education might sound like a bad thing to you, but it’s good for country. When you don’t have free education only the wealthy benefit. If you ever have children you will appreciate their ability to have a free education. Or you could go back to school yourself if you wanted to.

        Here’s what she advocates: For young people and workers hoping to gain new skills, Mrs. Clinton would subsidize college costs, refinance and cap student loan repayments and develop job-training programs.

        She would pay for it by taxing the rich at higher rates. Not taxing you.

  2. Thankfully, the situation is steadily swinging almost certainly in favour of Democratic nominee. What is alarming is the acute poverty of options for the electorate this time around with circumstances also throwing up the candidature of someone as unsuitable as Trump and the xenophobia and racial prejudices projected by him.

    • I actually believe we have better choices than a lot of people think.

      The Republicans have spent the last quarter-century accusing the Clinton’s of various things, trying to turn public opinion against them. And the’ve been successful, since people tend to think the worst of politicians. But if you look at the outcome of investigations they’ve been cleared of nearly everything.

  3. oh golly! sounds like you have as little choice in decent politics as we have over here…

    • Well, as I told Rajagopal I think our choices are much better than most people think. No one’s perfect, but people tend believe accusations against politicians. And right-wingers have spent the last quarter-century accusing Hillary of one thing after another — which investigations have almost entirely vindicated her of.

      People also seem to have an unconscious bias against women in leadership, so that’s hurting her too.

  4. Libertarians are also anti-war and would cut military spending, while Clinton is very pro-interventionist and a military hawk. She would be much more likely to involve the country in foreign military adventures that may result in many young Americans (usually the most under priviledged) dying.

    Also, libertarians support individual freedoms and would limit the government from entering your bedroom or monitoring the substances a person smokes…

    • It’s true that Libertarians don’t want to create laws that harm women or people of color. But they also don’t want to level the playing field through things like public education and civil rights legislation. They also don’t want any laws to stop climate change. So their policies have the effect of keeping power with the powerful. Power stays with whites, males, straight people, and the wealthy. So it ends up being a status quo party.

      No environmental regulation
      No public schools, state colleges or universities
      No financial aid for college
      No Social Security
      No Medicare
      No Affordable Care (universal healthcare)
      No legislating civil rights or women’s rights
      Etc.

      The World Bank and IMF tried to institute libertarian ideals in poor countries in exchange for some financial aid. So the countries got rid of public education. That was disastrous for the economy when few children went to school — the oldest boy if anyone. The World Bank and IMF have since changed their policies after seeing the devastation.

      Our planet is looking at environmental havoc — and wars due to water shortages — if we do nothing to limit greenhouse emissions. Legislating no environmental rules will continue the $$ boon for big oil and big coal. At the expense of everyone else.

      If you are progressive and don’t like Hillary it makes more sense to vote Green than Libertarian. But voting Green has the possibility of moving the country right — the opposite direction from where progresses want to go. I’ll be discussing that later.

  5. There was a recent column in the NY Times by Maureen Dowd about how Clinton is getting a lot of support from former G W Bush ‘Neo-Cons’. Her election would be good for the ‘military-industrial’ complex…

    • I was going to mention that article when I write about the Green Party. Here’s the thing:

      . Trump is nuts. Foreign-policy experts are worried he will get us into a war.
      . Libertarians won’t do anything to stop climate change. Which will cause wars. And help create an uninhabitable planet
      . Green Party would probably only get enough votes to elect Trump

      The neocons may be for her but given their option of Trump that is the most sensible thing, which is why she is getting so much support from EVERY sector.

      I don’t see her as a warmonger. She did recommend invading Libya, but that’s because she was trying to stop human rights violations like Rwanda. And she says that her vote on 9/11 was wrong, given that Bush chose to go to war — so she can admit error. But when she voted on 9/11 the vote wasn’t actually to invade Iraq, it was this:

      The resolution “supported” and “encouraged” diplomatic efforts by President George W. Bush to “strictly enforce through the U.N. Security Council all relevant Security Council resolutions regarding Iraq” and “obtain prompt and decisive action by the Security Council to ensure that Iraq abandons its strategy of delay, evasion, and noncompliance and promptly and strictly complies with all relevant Security Council resolutions regarding Iraq.”

      The resolution authorized President Bush to use the Armed Forces of the United States “as he determines to be necessary and appropriate” in order to “defend the national security of the United States against the continuing threat posed by Iraq; and enforce all relevant United Nations Security Council Resolutions regarding Iraq.”

  6. Right now the choice is limited and interesting! I would like to see how Americans prove to be different from the rest of the world. Their campaign has been mired in controversies like other countries. The statues of “The Emperor” by Las Vegas artist has added a lot of fun!

  7. Free education might sound like a bad thing to you, but it’s good for country. When you don’t have free education only the wealthy benefit. If you ever have children you will appreciate their ability to have a free education. Or you could go back to school yourself if you wanted to.”

    Yeah i’d like it to be easier for kids as this hurts students and I’ve been a college student so I know the ridiculous loans and friends who have dealt with it worse than men.

    Mrs. Clinton would subsidize college costs, refinance and cap student loan repayments and develop job-training programs.”

    Subsidize usually has to do with government help. The government helps in some ways like for subsidized apartments for low income families. But I don’t believe that’s going to be paid for, and it’s not being honest and instead sounds good and tricks people. Yet we will be the one picking up the tab for everybody. The middle class as usual picking up the tab for the rich and poor.

    • If government doesn’t change the people will vote for someone else. So both parties are in trouble. But since the Democratic Party has been the party of workers, while the Republican Party has been the party of the rich/Business interests in recent history, so it’s easier for the Democrats to suggest taxing the rich more. They’ve done it in the past, and they can do it again. I talk with Congress members from both parties and the Democrats are behind all of our ideas for helping average Americans, but it’s difficult to get Republicans to go along. So the Republicans stall everything in Congress and people blame both parties – which Republicans know will happen.

      The one good thing about support for Donald Trump is that it’s starting to wake up the Republican Party. I have seen some on the right recommending higher taxes on the wealthy! Oddly, it is actually in their interest. As the economy is stalled because working people don’t have money in their pockets to spend, so sales and profits go down. So interest rates are lowered to encourage investment. But no one thinks that people are buying so they don’t invest in making more products. Meanwhile the low interest backfires because people on fixed incomes – who make money off of investments – end up with less money to spend. Put it all together and the economy installed with no way out.

      The only way to get the economy going is to get money into worker hands so that they will spend it and sales and profits will go up. Which eventually will raise interest rates enough that those on fixed incomes will make more money. Even wealthy interests who make a lot of money off of investments will be helped. Hillary Clinton has suggested a number of ways of doing that (Getting money into worker hands so that they will spend it and sales and profits will go up): infrastructure spending (which aids trade for business interests too), affordable college puts money in student pockets – and creates an educated workforce which helps business interests — and if you hire more teachers that’s more people spending money, increase the minimum wage, institute the earned income tax credit, profit-sharing for workers also puts money in their pockets. Yes, it would be a tax on wealthier people but that idea has huge support among the American population, and it would even be basically an investment for business and the wealthy – which will pay back when interest rates are increased and they make more money off of their investments.

      Part of the reason why business people don’t make as good presidents as economists – and the country really tanked under the only business present we had: Herbert Hoover – is that businesses aren’t aware of how the whole economy is interconnected, they are just aware of their own business. (I was an Econ major for a while.)

      You might be interested in the following story from Barron’s:

      Stephanie Pomboy: Grim on Economy, Stocks

      http://www.barrons.com/article_email/stephanie-pomboy-a-grim-outlook-for-the-economy-stocks-1471670011-lMyQjA1MTA2MTI3MTkyNjEyWj

      • is that businesses aren’t aware of how the whole economy is interconnected, they are just aware of their own business. (I was an Econ major for a while.)”

        Yeah and that’s the problem. They don’t realize or away the economy is interconnected, because of greed. Millionaire, billionaire business men, ceos and owners, well they are more often than not just concerned about themselves and keeping their greedy asses rich and getting it richer. I think of the Walmarts, TJX’s who provide shit benefits and many other companies despite being billion dollar companies, even cutting benefits from workers despite the company thriving because of workers. That’s why it’s refreshing to see a few companies like Costco that go against the usual self greed and do provide more than many companies especially as far as benefits and the pay too

      • And greed only works for so long. At some point it starts backfiring. We seem to be getting to that point, both politically and economically. The people are rising up and supporting socialists and Trump. And sales and profits are also down! I wonder how long it will take wealthy business interests to figure out that they are now shooting themselves in the foot with their greed.

  8. Oh man. Liberty at the cost of everything else. Is it worth it? I don’t think so, but then I am not an American which is the birthplace (and the only place?) where the quest for Liberty takes on religious overtones. If not Hilary then who? I think we all know the answer to that question.

  9. Apparently you never heard of libertarian socialists.

    • I haven’t. Sounds like an oxymoron. But I’m curious. Is it something like this: Many anarchists were originally drawn to communism because they believed that once everyone “worked according to their ability and got according to their need” that there would be no more wars, crime or any need for police, or government of any sort.

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