Ronald Reagan the Libertarian
by Alex Tabarrok on June 7, 2004 at 7:10 am in Current Affairs | Permalink
Heres a wonderful quote from Reagan in 1975 from Reason magazine.
If you analyze it I believe the very heart and soul of conservatism is libertarianism. I think conservatism is really a misnomer just as liberalism is a misnomer for the liberalsif we were back in the days of the Revolution, so-called conservatives today would be the Liberals and the liberals would be the Tories. The basis of conservatism is a desire for less government interference or less centralized authority or more individual freedom and this is a pretty general description also of what libertarianism is.
Now, I cant say that I will agree with all the things that the present group who call themselves Libertarians in the sense of a party say, because I think that like in any political movement there are shades, and there are libertarians who are almost over at the point of wanting no government at all or anarchy. I believe there are legitimate government functions. There is a legitimate need in an orderly society for some government to maintain freedom or we will have tyranny by individuals. The strongest man on the block will run the neighborhood. We have government to insure that we dont each one of us have to carry a club to defend ourselves. But again, I stand on my statement that I think that libertarianism and conservatism are travelling the same path.
The Libertarian Party of today is in favor of no holds barred porn, the entire spectrum of the GLBT etc agenda, all drugs legalized, and legalized prostitution.
Do you think Reagan was in favor of all of the above?
For crying out loud, a single quote from a candidate, being interviewed by a lib magazine for a lib audience in 1975, and you got a quote that you find deep and meaningful, and that forever freezes the candidate into that interview quote according to you. Do you realize how ridiculous dredging up that lonely, isolated second of pandering is?
If you have a valid point, then you should be able to find all kinds of Reagan writings and speeches, and political statements, etc., over a 90 year life span to illustrate your point of Reagan being one of the nuts, even in that very interview, within seconds, he proceeds to defend social conservatism and rebuke the lib nuts.