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What is the difference between a Republican and a Libertarian?

Libertarians believe in  property rights, the power of free markets, private business, the innovation of the individual, and the importance of limited government.

Republicans say they believe in all that but when it comes to actual practice, this isn’t always the case.

So, that said, the debate over the Muslim Center two blocks away from Ground Zero has me asking a few questions.

Remember when Rand Paul so adamantly defended private business owners’ rights to refuse service to individuals based on their race, etc?  Where is Rand on the NYC Muslim Center debate?  Why isn’t Paul fiercely defending the the private citizens with the capital to purchase an area zoned properly to build their community center?

Second, Mike Bloomberg has taken a stand, saying the Community Center planners have the right to build.

I’m not sure if Bloomberg is a Republican, an independent, or just a media mogul at this point but why isn’t he really getting mad? Is there a city that took more guff about being out of touch with the rest of the country than New York City? Fox News commenators (from their NYC studios) complain about New York City elitist (the Bronx screams elitist by the way)  while conservatives complain about east coast liberals advocation for the nanny state.  Why isn’t Mike Bloomberg saying, “Hey, John Cornyn of Texas, don’t worry about what we’re doing in New York City.  And Sarah Palin; you can weigh in on where we put what buildings in New York as soon as you finish your governorship and bridge to  nowhere.”

You can argue whether it is a good or a bad idea, that is obvious.  But the planners have made their decision.

Yes, Sarah, we should shut down the “mosque” at ground zero.  Limited government, indeed.


5 Responses

  1. Also, theoretically, wouldn’t Libertarians be more pre-disposed to support legalization of marijuana and gay marriage?

  2. Want to see a “Libertarian” Tea Party member’s head explode? Show them this:


  3. Well said. Been trying to make this point for years. The republican ideals are one thing and the way they act is totally differnt. I always use the phrase “conservative when convienient”. If it supports jesus guns or profits then the non intervention thing goes out the window

  4. Cheers, Jon. I’ve been meaning to write about the word conservative for awhile.

    It is not just that folks are conservative when convenient. That’s just a synonym for Republican at this point.

    My 89 year old grandmother — a Kennedy Democrat — is a thousand times more “conservative” than some of the crazy Tea Partiers.

    “Conservative” From Dictionary.com

    cautiously moderate or purposefully low: a conservative estimate.

    traditional in style or manner; avoiding novelty or showiness: conservative suit.

  5. […] Posted on August 24, 2010 by The Unqualified Economist I asked what the difference between a Republican and a Libertarian is a few days […]

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