"Libertarian Dem" Considered Oxymoronic

Markos Moulitsas, aka "Kos", posted about "The Libertarian Dem". Liberty-lovers should check it out, if only to see how badly the term "Libertarian" can be twisted.

Will Wilkinson has a good response. Excerpt:

It's pretty clear that Kos is pushing a program of positive liberty rather in opposition to the classical libertarian notion of liberty as non-interference. I fear that once you cash out precisely what Kos has in mind by ensuring that people aren't "unduly exploited by employers," whatever that means, or by "poverty prevention" and "social net programs," we'll discover something disappointingly like the Democratic party status quo. In which case, Kos will be simply declaring a pretty standard set of Democratic policies as "libertarian," in defiance of the normal understanding of the term. Is this a Machiavellian attempt at the dark Lakovian arts of re-framing? Or, more hopefully, a reflection of a sincere wish to court libertarians away from a lately abusive alliance with Republicans?
I'd bet the answer to both Will's questions is yes. Serendipitously, Stephen Spruiell at the NR Media Blog dug up a Swedish magazine's interview with Kos, where he's quoted:
"I was in England recently, where they don't allow political ads on TV. It was a fantastic experience. It was so beautiful that I cried."
Yes, the "Libertarian Dem" is also enthusiastically in favor of government regulation and supression of political speech. What else?

URLs du Jour


  • Both New Hampshire senators, Gregg and Sununu, voted against cloture on the Federal Marriage Amendment, helping to seal its doom for now. This was a switch for Senator Gregg, who voted for it in 2004. Yay for both of them.

    Dafydd proposes an interesting substitute that would protect unwilling states from being forced to accept gay marriage by judicial fiat, while allowing willing states to do so, and decline to accept gay marriage for federal purposes. Maybe next time they'll try something more sensible.

  • Good WSJ editorial today on the Death Tax, especially good where it discusses a fact that makes lefty heads spin: the tax is unpopular among people (like me, unfortunately) that would never have to pay it:
    Americans favor repealing the death tax not because they think it will help them directly. They're more principled than that. Two-thirds of the public wants to repeal it because they think taxing a lifetime of thrift due to the accident of death is unfair, and even immoral. They also understand that the really rich won't pay the tax anyway because they hire lawyers to avoid it.

    Also mentioned is a point that relates back to my Paris Hilton post of yesterday:

    The American Family Business Institute has found that the bulk of the Hilton estate has long been sheltered from the IRS in tax-free trusts.
    So even if you have a nasty burning desire to hurt Paris, keeping the estate tax around won't do the job. Sorry. Maybe you could kidnap her stupid little dog instead.

    [Yes, I know repeal failed. Sigh.]

  • If you happen upon a random USB flash drive just lying around, make like Dionne Warwick's ex-boyfriend and walk on by. (Via GeekPress.)