Now that the GOP hate fest is finished in Cleveland, culminating in Donald Trump’s screaming impersonation of a cross between Mussolini and Adolf Hitler, with lots of narcissism throughout his tirade, I’m feeling a tiny bit sad for the rational Republicans I know (yes, they’re a vanishing breed but not extinct yet). They, and some Democrats who still harbor a strong dislike for Hillary Clinton, might decide to cast a vote for Gary Johnson, current candidate for president on the Libertarian ticket. They better check into just what cockamamie positions the Libertarian Party holds. (I’m using the party platform Charles Koch ran on in 1980 No change since then.)
I assume most people are like me. They enjoy driving on roads maintained and paid for by taxes, but otherwise free to the user. Here’s the position of libertarians on road: “We call for the privatization of the public roads and national highway system.” What does that mean? Roads would be sold to the highest corporate bidder, who would toll the roads to make back the purchase price and make profits after that. So, every time I got on a public highway, or even a local road, I would have to pay a fee to some profit-making entity regulated by no one.
When LBJ was president, Medicare was passed because private health insurance refused to insure the elderly since they would use insurance more than the young and healthy would. That’s why we have Medicare. Medicaid and CHIP insurance programs were passed to provide a basic level of medical care for the poor and poor children. Here’s the libertarian position on health insurance: “We favor the abolition of Medicare and Medicaid programs. We oppose any compulsory…tax-supported plan to provide health services…We also favor the deregulation of the medical insurance industry.”
An end to Medicare would mean millions of seniors couldn’t afford health care coverage. More than 50% of Medicaid goes to people in nursing homes with no assets left and to severely handicapped Americans. Libertarians don’t say what those people are supposed to do.
Do you remember the uproar when the USPS proposed ending Saturday mail delivery? Here’s what libertarians think of the postal system: “We propose the abolition of the government postal system…allowing free competition of all aspects of postal service.” Effectively, the result would be any person living in an area where mail delivery couldn’t make a profit wouldn’t have mail service.
Do you believe in public education, as I do? Libertarians “advocate the complete separation of education and the State…Government ownership, operation, regulation, and subsidy of schools and colleges should be ended.” They’re for ending all public education and privatizing it, slamming the door on a major vehicle for social mobility and cultural quality.
Here is a partial list of governmental agencies and laws the libertarian platform advocates eliminating:
1. Environmental Protection Agency
2. Department of Energy
3. Department of Transportation
4. Department of Health, Education and Welfare
6. Federal Aviation Administration
7. Food and Drug Administration
9. Consumer Product Safely Administration
10. Laws “requiring individuals to buy or use so-called protective equipment, such as safety belts, air bags, or crash helmets.
11. The Internal Revenue Service and elimination of “all personal and corporate income taxes, including capital gains taxes,” plus laws about tax evasion.
12. Social Security
13. Federal Election Commission
I could go on and on, but I think you get the idea. The libertarians want our country to forsake the twenty-first century and return to the nineteenth, or worse. Their platform read like a Koch Brothers orgasmic dream.
Gary Johnson, standard bearer for the libertarians this year, was CEO of Cannabis Sativa, a company selling cannabis products where it’s legal. He sampled the company products once too often if he believes the American people are ready for this radical platform. I’m sorry, my dear Republican friends, you’re screwed. However, I have a couple of very competent Democrats I’d like to sell you on. They’ll be a H-U-G-E success after November. Come on, we have a secret ballot. Nobody needs to know….