I have long held the opinion that libertarians are simply people who have decided they don’t want to live in the real world, preferring instead to construct castles in the air and hurl abuse at anyone who dares intrude on their zero-government fantasies. Mine’s been a pretty crude view, I must say.
But now take a look at this picture. It is from the website of my old enemy friend enemy friend Dan Mitchell of the Center for Freedom and Prosperity, a self-confessed libertarian whom I skewer in Treasure Islands. I like this picture. (Sorry, you’ll have to click on it to see the whole picture.)
I like it because it has transformed my crude view of libertarians into something perhaps just a little more nuanced. I didn’t know, for example, that many Republicans view libertarians as dope-smoking hippies. And it reminded me that many libertarians aren’t all simply shills for the rich: some of them truly believe in their misguided hearts that this is the path to a better world. It’s hard to be sure, but from the time I spent talking to Dan Mitchell, I get the feeling that he is one of those libertarians.
For the record, I still think that libertarian ideology is both pernicious and nutty (for reasons like this. Hilarious). I think that the ‘what my friends think I do’ box in the picture is easily the most appropriate.
But it is nice that some of them do have a sense of humour.