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Bartlett: Libertarians lack balance

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Writing in Forbes, Bruce Bartlett argues that many libertarians tend to obsess over economics and taxes, paying little more than lip service to civil liberties and peace. A better balance will make it easier for libertarians to form alliances with natural allies on the left, he says. An alliance would also benefit liberals, who stand to learn something about free market economics.

One provocative statement: “Many government interventions expand freedom. A good example would be the Civil Rights Act of 1964. It was opposed by libertarians like Barry Goldwater as an unconstitutional infringement on states’ rights. Yet it was obvious that African Americans were suffering tremendously at the hands of state and local governments. If the federal government didn’t step in to redress these crimes, who else would?

“Since passage of the civil rights act, African Americans have achieved a level of freedom equal to that of most whites. Yet I have never heard a single libertarian hold up the civil rights act as an example of a libertarian success.”

Written by jacksontom

May 31, 2009 at 11:53 am

Posted in Opinion

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