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L. Neil Smith's THE LIBERTARIAN ENTERPRISE
Number 883, July 31, 2016

Where is Pat Paulsen when we really need him?

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Election Day
by Sean Gangol
RGangol@sbcglobal.net

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Special to L. Neil Smith's The Libertarian Enterprise

Here we are, three months away from the elections and boy do I find it underwhelming. At least with the last two elections, as disappointing as they were, there was at least a Ron Paul that I could root for, when the idiots in the Republican Party went with some RHINO like John McCain or Mitt Romney. I have had people ask me about Ron Paul‘s son. The problem was that Rand Paul was far from being the principled politician that his father was, which is why he didn‘t have the same following. Also, he ran a terrible campaign. Of course that is a dead issue now.

I had even less enthusiasm for the rest of the candidates, though I was willing to settle for a Constitutional Conservative like Ted Cruz. I know that there are libertarians that take issue with the man‘s stance on foreign policy and as L. Neil Smith elegantly put it, not being able to keep his religion in his pants, but I think a principled conservative would have been much better than the candidate that the Republican Party ended up with.

If you had told me years ago that a reality show clown would have made it this far, I probably would have thought you were insane. Actually, I still can‘t believe it. To say that Trump isn‘t my first choice as president would be the understatement of the century. Besides being a narcissistic ass and a crony capitalist that once attempted to steal somebody‘s property by getting his cronies in the government to use Eminent Domain, he doesn‘t seem to have a consistent position on anything. Hell, not even the crazy, off the wall rhetoric that he spouts out bothers me as much as the way he consistently flip-flops on issues. Personally, I think his narcissism and his wackiness are actually some of his better qualities.

A perfect example of his inconsistencies, is his stance on the Second Amendment. Years ago Trump seemed about as anti-gun as Hillary Clinton, but now he claims that he supports universal carry permits, which allows people to carry firearms no matter what state that they find themselves in. Then recently after the Orlando shootings he said that he was going to try to get the NRA to compromise on prohibiting people on terrorist watch lists from obtaining firearms. Trump is just as inconsistent on healthcare. At one point he supported single payer healthcare and now he claims that he is going to repeal Obamacare once he is elected. Yes, I am aware that politicians say one thing and do another, but Trump seems to be all over the place. I just don‘t know which Trump we are going to get if he is elected president.

Sadly, his knowledge of basic economics is just as hopelessly ignorant as those on the left. Trump apparently thinks that it is a good idea to raise tariffs on foreign goods in the name of ending trade deficits. This also shows a severe ignorance in history as well. Back when the Great Depression first came about, President Herbert Hoover thought it was good idea to raise tariffs to protect American companies from competition. What he didn‘t realize was that these same nations that he was raising tariffs against also had the same ability to tax our goods that were being imported into their countries as well. This led to another bad economic down turn, which deepened the depression. Basically Trump‘s policies would actually create even greater trade deficits.

I find it somewhat strange that there are libertarians who support Trump, such as Christopher Cantwell and Stefan Molyneux. Cantwell says that he likes the way that Trump seems to upset leftists to the point where they cry themselves to sleep at night. He also said that he hopes that once Trump gets elected, these same leftists will eventually drown themselves in their own tears. I will say that Trump‘s ability to upset leftists to the point where some have claimed that they will leave the country if he is elected is definitely a plus. Sadly, they probably won‘t live up to their promises. I will also admit that I enjoy the fact that Trump‘s very name has sent Social Justice Warriors on college campuses to retreat to their safe spaces. No, I‘m not kidding. There were actually college students that found themselves “triggered” when they saw Trump‘s name written in chalk on the campus sidewalk. I will also say that Trump is much better at mudslinging than Hillary “What Difference Does It Make” Clinton.

I know that there are libertarians that will vote for Trump simply because he may seem like the lesser of two evils. I would say that conservatives and libertarians who support Trump in any way are wrong, but at this point our options aren‘t that great. I am not even going to mention the Libertarian Party option. The same goes for Hillary. It‘s not to say that I don‘t like the prospect of having a president that makes leftists so mad that they end up tearing out their hair. The only problem is that I‘m not sure which Trump we are going to get once he is elected. Are we going to get the politically incorrect Trump that many (not all) of us have grown to love or are we going to get the Trump that isn‘t much different from Hillary Clinton? His conservative and libertarian supporters would tell us that Trump has to play both sides in order to get elected. All I can say is at this point is that I hope that it is the Trump supporters who are right and not his detractors. Believe me this is the one time where I want the detractors to be wrong.


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