In early 2018, I chose to join the Libertarian Party (LP) and to run for the U.S. House of Representatives in the Maryland 3rd Congressional District. I did so because…
The social media giants, Facebook and Google, do indeed pose threat to our democracy, though not in the way that the pundits and politicians have been saying.
“To suppress free speech is a double wrong. It violates the rights of the hearer as well as those of the speaker.” — Frederick Douglass
Pundits have long been predicting a “libertarian moment” in which the ideas of individual liberty and accountable government become predominant in society and politics.
But with both the Democratic and Republican parties riven by faction and captive to their zealots, bringing us polarization and dysfunction in Washington, might not we be approaching a moment in which the stubborn political duopoly finally totters and falls?
“Whatever its shortcomings, the American system of free enterprise has given our nation a prosperity very rare in any age; and it is infinitely freer and juster and more orderly than any collectivistic scheme of total regulation.” — Russell Kirk
Discrimination comes in many forms. One of which is the modern social media giants such as Facebook and Google prohibiting reasonable voices — not hateful, not exploitive, not violent — from having fair and necessary access to their platforms due to deviation from the “politically correct” agenda of Silicon Valley and the Progressive Left.
If you doubt that the media giants are abusing their power and posing a threat to our democracy, consider the case of Google’s restrictions on Prager University (PragerU), an organization that produces engaging five-minute videos on ideas that are libertarian, classical liberal, and conservative.
A balanced budget amendment (BBA) is the blunt-force instrument we need in order to get Congress and the President to do that which they will never do themselves: Confront, debate, and decide our priorities, our resources, and our limits.
Just because the fiscally hypocritical Republicans in the House voted for the BBA this week after passing a disgraceful spending bill last month does not make the BBA a bad idea. And just because the fiscally irresponsible Democrats predictably voted against the BBA likewise does not make the BBA a bad idea.
The BBA is a good and necessary idea. It is a check-and-balance that we must add to the Constitution to protect the dispersed public against the entrenched politicians; to protect ourselves against the growing risk of a debt crisis and financial reckoning; to protect future generations of Americans from the current.
Our politicians are too keen to fight. Our political activists, whether from the Left or the Right, whether in the streets or in the media, are too quick to vilify and demonize those with whom they disagree. The rest of us are stuck in the withering, wearying cross-fire, wondering where this all goes; wondering when and how it might cease.
In the movie, Fight Club (which I recently watched anew), we can see where it might all conceivably lead: General alienation from civil society; general attacks upon civil society; and eventual implosion of civil society. We are not, however, beholden to the Fight Club path; we are not doomed to a Fight Club future. We can go a different way, if we recognize and seize our opportunities.
“Our American society is far from perfect. Yet it is a society that works, and which ensures a tolerable measure of order and justice and freedom to men and women; as human societies go, it is a very high achievement.” — Russell Kirk
Devised explicitly and shamelessly to protect established parties and politicians from competition, the gerrymander disenfranchises regular voters and polarizes national politics. The Maryland 3rd Congressional district, with a contorted and splayed shape drawn to keep Rep. John Sarbanes safe from competition, may be the worst gerrymander in the entire country. The district proves from its sprawl, its intent, and its effect that the gerrymander has become a scourge. As such, it must be slain. Only a constitutional amendment will do. No excuses, no delay.