Thursday, May 18, 2017
For the rest of us, though, especially those of us of a libertarian bent, we need not simply to expect better but to demand better. Regardless of slow economic growth throughout this century, regardless of the endless wars in which America is mired, and regardless of the ever-growing wall of petty and grand regulations and restrictions against new ways of doing business and living life, we are living in a fundamentally Libertarian Moment, one in which more and more of us are more able than ever to live where we want, work where we want, marry whom we want, eat what we want, and travel where we want. As Matt Welch and I wrote in The Declaration of Independents: How Libertarian Politics Can Fix What's Wrong with America, politics is a lagging indicator of where America is headed. Outside of the political realm, our lives are mostly getting better. The challenge—a brutal, one given current circumstances—is how to drag politics into the 21st century so that we finally leave behind two major political parties that are so awful neither of their candidates could win even 50 percent of the popular vote.
One thing is clear: Cleaving to right/left, conservative/liberal, Republican/Democrat tribes in a world in which more and more people define themselves as libertarian isn't going to work. Neither will falling for fake-news narratives about Trump's historical badness. We need a new politics that is ultimately based on policy, not personalities; policy, not politics; and policy, not partisanship. We need to demand more of our elected representatives and we need to start yesterday.
Libertarians are often optimists. Not me for some reason.