Friday, May 13, 2011

Why liberals and libertarians can't get along

This latest from Rand Paul is also why those two factions will not form a third party. Here he is talking about health care:

"With regard to the idea of whether you have a right to health care, you have realize what that implies. It’s not an abstraction. I’m a physician. That means you have a right to come to my house and conscript me. It means you believe in slavery. It means that you’re going to enslave not only me, but the janitor at my hospital, the person who cleans my office, the assistants who work in my office, the nurses. ... You have a right to beat down my door with the police, escort me away and force me to take care of you? That’s ultimately what the right to free health care would be,"

Sorry, but that's just crazy. And no liberal can accept that. He is wrong about what a right to health care would mean. And he is wrong that it would be equivalent to slavery. Libertarians like Paul simply have too different a conception of what rights are and what freedom entails in order for liberals to get along with them.

Sure, we like their stances on drugs and foreign policy. But health care is a central policy preference for liberals. And there is no reconciliation between what we want and what libertarians want. Even libertarians aren't ready to accept the actual free market, non-gov't intervention approach. That would involve hospitals letting people die on their doorstep, insurance companies not ensuring sick people, and employers not getting tax breaks for providing insurance for employees. Not only that, conservative icons think it should be a right.

So until libertarians come to their senses or liberals just lose it we aren't going to have a third party. James Madison continues to win. Its frustrating but its something we largely have to accept. The only legit way to do something to change things is to be active in primaries. That's a good time to try and influence parties.

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