A New York Perspective on some of the major Political issues of the Day
You do not need to be an enrolled Libertarian voter in order to agree with these positions, but if more Democrats and Republicans spoke out on them and made it clear that they agreed with them, the impact that that could have on the political discourse could be profound. You may recall how quickly and easily small, but loud and determined factions moved the Democrats to the far left and the Reagan-era Republicans to the religious right.
New York State has extremely high tax rates, at all levels of government (state income tax, retail sales tax and property tax) which support massive, bloated government bureaucracies. If you look at a pie chart of how these governments spend those prodigious sums, the various “transfer payments,” in the aggregate, make up the largest slice of the pie. Libertarians believe that you have the right to keep and enjoy the fruits of your labors, because those fruits would not exist had it not been for you and your efforts. Liberalism, or socialism, creates poverty by penalizing productivity and rewarding idleness. It has contributed to the creation of a permanent underclass. We oppose transfer payments and support your right to keep what you have earned.
The right to keep and bear arms
The NYS “Safe Act” was passed under false pretenses after Cuomo declared an “emergency” (Cuomo loves that word). Every individual has the right and, in fact, the duty to defend his or her own life and the lives of his or her family and household. The police cannot protect you from imminent threats and that is not their job; they are not your personal bodyguards nor are they security guards for your property. We support the outright, immediate, unconditional repeal of the NYS Safe Act and many of the other, onerous gun laws that make NYS hostile to legitimate, law abiding gun owners and friendly to criminals.
The Coronavirus Lockdown
The response has been a perfect example of government overreach and “empire building.” Economic hardship can be more deadly than a virus, especially to the working poor. The China-style lockdown has caused more damage than the virus ever could. There is no scientific evidence that the lockdown has had any more than a minor effect on public health, and even those most vulnerable to the virus would have been better off taking recommended precautions without also having to face the economic hardship of a quarantined economy. Libertarians believe that the least intrusive solution is the best one. The model employed in Sweden and South Korea consisted of social distancing and face masks only, with quarantine reserved for members of high-risk groups only. Their statistical results have not been significantly worse than those of other countries that took heavy-handed approaches. When the adverse impacts of those heavy-handed measures are considered, the Swedish / South Korean model may even produce a net improvement to the statistics. It also eliminates the need for multi-trillion dollar, long-term-debt-funded financial rescue efforts.
While everyone, even the vast majority of police, condemn sadistic acts of cruelty and murder at the hands of police, Libertarians recognize that everyone must be able to call on someone to aid in their defense when their rights are violated. The police have been grossly misused for decades, to advance social agendas, enforce unjust laws and generate revenue. This breeds widespread contempt for the police, who have been placed in the difficult position of being required to run roughshod over peaceful citizens. Libertarians call for the end of the politicized misuse of police and demand that police be called upon only when life or property is at stake. When people begin to trust that the police will never bother them if they are acting peacefully and are there for no reason other than to protect them from becoming a victim, they will be universally respected again.
Libertarians believe that corruption in government exists because of the enormous power of government officials to affect the economic well-being of wealthy business owners. So long as the government has the power to help one wealthy business owner to reap vast sums of money or stifle his competitors, human beings in government will be faced with enormous temptation to support policy that benefits such “grateful” business owners over the public. Libertarians call for the role of government to be limited to defending the rights of citizens. Once the politicians have no more influence to peddle, they will not be tempted into corruption and the bad ones will no longer be clamoring for the job. He who governs least governs best.