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The differences between libertarians and conservatives?

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posted on Nov, 25 2010 @ 07:31 PM
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I have always wondered what the difference was between libertarians and conservatives. There is this thing with some conservatives insisting they are libertarian and as recently as 2007 as I recall it has become popular among many on the rightwing to lable themselves libertarians. I do however fail to see any fundamental difference between the two.

As I understand there has been the point made that libertarians are different in that they differ on social issues with many conservatives, but this has not been that evident to me at all. The libertarians I am aware of hold the same social issues as any other conservative. Mind you I met one athiest who considered himself a libertarian, I know that Penn and Teller, those two television hosts, are libertarian and athiest, but beyond that, many hold virtually the same issues, and many are religious. I mean let's have a look at mainstream libertarians:

Ron Paul
Outright opposes abortion
Capital punishment
Supported impeachment of Bill Clinton (but did not support impeachment of Bush in 2007)
Co-sponsored bill for prayer in public schools
While Ron Paul stated recently that gay adoption was a states issue he did support a ban on gay adoption 1999 for Washington DC.
Supports don't ask don't tell, opposes any changes
www.ontheissues.org...
He did make it clear he supported stem cell research but this is the only significant difference I see.

Bob Barr who was the presidential candidate for the libertarian party:
Opposes abortion
Supported impeachment of Clinton
Supports death penalty
Opposes gay adoptions, voted against it in DC
www.ontheissues.org...

The list goes on.... You have the likes of individuals like Glenn Beck or Barry Goldwater self proclaimed libertarians, who are no more different than your typical conservative. Barry Gold water opposed desegregation, Glenn Beck among other issues opposes abortion. There are not enough differences from libertarians that I am aware of that deem them seperate from conservatives. Neither do I believe that being an athiest automatically removes you from being a conservative (not that Iv seen that many conservative/libertarian athiests).

So maybe some libertarians here can argue their differences? I understand that there are some people who don't like political labels period, but like it or not there are many people who do refer themselves as liberals, conservatives or libertarians. So what's the explanation? Is there any point to being called a libertarian then? I understand that the tea party movement is considered by many as a libetarian movement but I see absolutely no difference between it and other conservative movements or demographics.

What makes a libertarian from a conservative?
edit on 25-11-2010 by Southern Guardian because: fixed




posted on Nov, 25 2010 @ 07:44 PM
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Sums it up for me. And I used to be a libertarian in my more naive days.



posted on Nov, 25 2010 @ 08:02 PM
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Traditional values conservatism - ie the religious right is a 'social' pattern - one that is there to keep 'biological' value patterns in check (criminality, sex etc) - which is why all traditional societies are deeply 'conservative' - especially Islam.

The phenomena of liberal values is the intellectual self, deciiding, that being a fully socialised persona it doesn't need to be restrained by arbitrary social restraints and can decide for itself what is good or bad.

All well and good until it decides that the upholders of the traditional status quo are its 'enemies', without understanding the purpose of traditional value patterns, arbitrary though they are, (hippies etc)

Even worse are leftists who have decided to wage all out war on traditional value patterns - and insist on conferring 'intellectual' status on biological value populations.

So .... it is perfectly possible to be a libertarian whilst upholding the value of traditional social patterns.



posted on Nov, 25 2010 @ 08:09 PM
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I believe there is a huge difference between the two ideologies.

The current "brand" of conservatism believes that we should stick to the status quo, feeling that change only leads to uncertainty. They are willing to subvert constitutional authority if it allows them to maintain power or pass legislation they feel is required by their belief system. Their religion is also superior in their minds, allowing them to govern in a way that is not always constitutional. IMO, mainstream conservatives are a complete detriment to the ideals of the constitution, as they are willing to toss it to the side for party gain.

Libertarianism believes in strict accordance to the constitution. They believe that our personal feelings or religious bias' are not acceptable reasons to stray from our founding documents. Nothing more, nothing less.

Similar to conservatism, Libertarianism has been hijacked by the mainstream political hacks that wish to use these "right wing" ideologies to fold all of the Right into one basket. Beck, Limbaugh and Hannity are good examples of those who wish to use these political movements for political/monetary gain.

So I can see why it may be hard to separate one from the other. I happen to believe, as a true conservative, that between the two extremes is the "sweet spot". Not one political ideology has the answers to all that ails us, but we must be willing to look past the false leaders or prophets within the machinery of each to find common ground.



posted on Nov, 25 2010 @ 08:36 PM
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I am a conservative libertarian. What that means is that I strongly believe in the Founding Fathers original intent and the Constitution. I believe that Government belongs in the tiny box that it was designed to be in. I believe in state's rights and individual freedom. I also believe in God, I was raised baptist, but I have come to hate religion. I believe in a individual relationship with God, and if someone else doesn't then that's cool, I don't want to force my views on anyone. In a nutshell the conservative side of me is strictly political, the libertarian side of me is for anything and everything, as long as it doesn't infringe upon someone else's freedom, rights or safety. One point that I would like to make is that there are many types of conservatives. When someone says they are a conservative, then ask them what they are trying to conserve. Not all conservatives are religious zealots. The religious right is just one group of conservatives. These conservatives want to force their way of thinking on others, for example, gay marriage. They believe that marriage should be between a man and woman and they feel that so should you. I find this hypocritical because if you are a conservative that believes in freedom and liberty then you should support the freedom of gays to get married. Ron Paul is a Conservative Republican, with a couple views that lean towards the libertarian side. If you want to see a true libertarian look at Jesse Ventura and what he stands for. Then compare that to a true conservative, Jim DeMint (Senator SC) That will really show you the difference between the two.



posted on Nov, 25 2010 @ 08:39 PM
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reply to post by Southern Guardian
 


Liberitarians Actually Have a Pair of Balls between their Legs as apposed to Conservatives who Lost theirs LONG AGO.........

edit on 25-11-2010 by Zanti Misfit because: (no reason given)



posted on Nov, 25 2010 @ 09:12 PM
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reply to post by sheepslayer247
 


I understand where you are coming from, most libertarians feel that the government has overstepped its boundaries and many spoke out when conservative didn't in general, but then wouldn't that just be disenfranchised conservatives? Most conservatives in my opinion have always felt disenfranchised with the government. Many conservatives were dissappointed when Bush failed to privatize social security. Conservatives are in the same boat in believing government must be reformed, so there is no difference. Same with liberals. There is a constant tug of war between the ideologies over the need for government to change, there is an equal argument that government is not doing what it is required to function. To say this belief seperates libertarians exclusively does not make any sense to me.



posted on Nov, 25 2010 @ 09:41 PM
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reply to post by Southern Guardian
 

Yes, it's possible that many Libertarians are simply disenfranchised Conservatives. I am sure there are many. But maybe it's easier for me to explain the difference with an example of differing opinions on certain issues.

Conservatives are Pro-Life...period. Almost solely based on religious reasons.

A true Libertarian is usually pro-life, but believe that the Federal government has no place to pass legislation for or against the issue. It is up to the local communities to govern it's people, regardless of their religious beliefs.

Conservatives talk about spending cuts and lower taxation, but rarely act accordingly.

A true Libertarian believes in the same fiscal ideology, but again believe it's not the job of the Federal government to tax and spend. Instead, the responsibility lies with the local government and state.

These are just a couple examples, but you can see how the Republican/Conservatives differ quite significantly when it comes to the fine details.



posted on Nov, 26 2010 @ 01:39 AM
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reply to post by Southern Guardian
 


The difference between a libertarian and a conservative on religious issues is that the libertarian does not want to interject religion into State legislation.

However, this does NOT include abortion, which is NOT a religious issue.

Abortion is a moral issue. If one believes life begins at conception, it follows that the person would be against abortion since this is tantamount to murder in their eyes. An atheist can be opposed to abortion on moral grounds and not be in conflict with being an atheist.

Aside from abortion, marriage is where libertarians and conservatives differ drastically in opinions.

A libertarian would say the State has no business licensing marriages at all, and thus gays should be allowed to get married in any private church that is willing to perform the ceremony.

A conservative would say that marriage is entirely the responsibility of the State to manage and license, and therefore the State should keep marriage strictly between a man and a woman.

Of course, the constitution is clear that the government shall not recognize any establishment of religion. Marriage is an establishment of religion.

edit on 26-11-2010 by mnemeth1 because: (no reason given)



posted on Nov, 26 2010 @ 01:43 AM
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reply to post by Southern Guardian
 


Ron Paul is a good man; I respect him. However, Ron Paul is no Libertarian.

Bob Barr is a good man; I respect him. However, Bob Barr is no Libertarian.

Libertarian leanings on some particular issues does not make one a libertarian. Just look at Glenn Beck.



posted on Nov, 26 2010 @ 01:49 AM
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reply to post by Judge_Holden
 


I'm curious what Ron Paul has specifically done to make you think he is a neo-con.

The guy gives lectures at the Mises Institute, which is filled with anarchists.

Ron's views are basically one step short of anarchy, which is about as libertarian as you can get.

I actually have a video of him addressing a crowd of anarchists.

Oh, and Ron Paul does not support "don't ask don't tell":
www.dailypaul.com...

edit on 26-11-2010 by mnemeth1 because: (no reason given)



posted on Nov, 26 2010 @ 01:56 AM
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Originally posted by mnemeth1
reply to post by Judge_Holden
 


I'm curious what Ron Paul has specifically done to make you think he is a neo-con.



Unbelievable.

Re-read my post. I never said that Ron Paul is a Neo-Con. It simply is not true. Ron Paul, while libertarian leaning on certain issues, is not Libertarian. I respect the man and look up to him. In fact, I have a personalized, autographed photo of him that is sitting in a frame in my room.

Again, I never said Ron Paul is a Neo-Con. How ridiculous.



posted on Nov, 26 2010 @ 02:00 AM
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Originally posted by Judge_Holden

Originally posted by mnemeth1
reply to post by Judge_Holden
 


I'm curious what Ron Paul has specifically done to make you think he is a neo-con.



Unbelievable.

Re-read my post. I never said that Ron Paul is a Neo-Con. It simply is not true. Ron Paul, while libertarian leaning on certain issues, is not Libertarian. I respect the man and look up to him. In fact, I have a personalized, autographed photo of him that is sitting in a frame in my room.

Again, I never said Ron Paul is a Neo-Con. How ridiculous.


There is only neo-con or libertarian.

There is no neo-libertarian-con.



posted on Nov, 26 2010 @ 02:08 AM
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reply to post by mnemeth1
 


You're being serious? What unbelievably flawed logic. I would recommend that you take a few college courses on American Politics before you make such a ludicrous statement. Neo-conservatism exists, and it is quite prevalent within the Republican Party; I will not argue that. But to think that political theory/philosophy is so black and white that you are either a "libertarian" or a "neo-conservative" is downright absurd.

But all of my PoliSci professors were probably neo-cons, right?



posted on Nov, 26 2010 @ 02:13 AM
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Originally posted by Judge_Holden
reply to post by mnemeth1
 


You're being serious? What unbelievably flawed logic. I would recommend that you take a few college courses on American Politics before you make such a ludicrous statement. Neo-conservatism exists, and it is quite prevalent within the Republican Party; I will not argue that. But to think that political theory/philosophy is so black and white that you are either a "libertarian" or a "neo-conservative" is downright absurd.

But all of my PoliSci professors were probably neo-cons, right?


Party categorization serves an important function to voters and to people discussing politics.

It allows a person to understand the broad brush views of politician without having to study him in-depth.

If a politician differs slightly on a few points from the party platform, he's still generally categorized by that platform.

Ron Paul barely deviates from the libertarian party platform.

Saying Ron Paul is not a libertarian is like saying Walter Block is not an anarchist.

The statement is ridiculous.

It's especially ridiculous considering he ran on the libertarian ticket previously.

edit on 26-11-2010 by mnemeth1 because: (no reason given)



posted on Nov, 26 2010 @ 02:48 AM
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reply to post by mnemeth1
 


As I said, Ron Paul is not a Libertarian. You can disagree all you want; he just isn't. He may have libertarian leanings on certain subjects, but HE calls himself a conservative with some libertarian leanings. NOT a down-the-line Libertarian with no conservative leanings. If he is a libertarian, why has he been a republican congressman for more than ten terms? Please don't give me the typical, "well, he couldn't win as a libertarian!" It's just redundant, and it doesn't work for me.

Also, I am aware that he ran for president as a Libertarian in 1988, but he eventually re-entered politics as a republican. What TRUE libertarian would do that? Seeing that he is a registered republican, has served as a republican for over ten terms, and suppots many republican causes (introduction of pro-life legislation, support of capital punishment, push for heavy boarder patrol, backing of the We the People Act, among others) would it be wrong to say that he is a Republican with some libertarian leanings? Ron Paul obviously has conservative convictions, so, following your logic, would I not be able to say that he is a Republican?

As I said before, I like Ron Paul. I wrote him in for president in 2008 because I believe in him. He has enough libertarian beliefs to allow a true libertarian (like myself) to ignore some of the things that make him only "kind of" a libertarian. With that said, though, Ron Paul is not really a Libertarian. I'm sorry.



posted on Nov, 26 2010 @ 02:54 AM
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posted on Nov, 26 2010 @ 02:59 AM
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Originally posted by mnemeth1
reply to post by Southern Guardian
 


The difference between a libertarian and a conservative on religious issues is that the libertarian does not want to interject religion into State legislation.

However, this does NOT include abortion, which is NOT a religious issue.


This is to assume that abortion, gay marriage, gay adoption and don't ask don't tell are solely religious issues for conservatives in general, they are not. You have alot of conservatives and others who oppose these things whether by federal or state level over this notion of morals or family values. Many conservatives in my opinion use religion as a mask for their own cultural agenda. If this was not the case they'd (most) be spending more time helping people and following what the bible actually preaches as opposed to drilling religious beliefs and criticisms down everybody else's throat. It is a cultural agenda and religion is just a cover in my opinion.

With abortion I am sure you will have many conservatives who will claim it is not solely a religious stance. I don't believe "religion" is enough of a barrier to seperate conservatives and libertarians.


If one believes life begins at conception, it follows that the person would be against abortion since this is tantamount to murder in their eyes.


Again I highly doubt religion is the soul purpose for why many conservatives oppose abortion either. I agree that religion is used as a cover for many motives, but it is not the core reason. I highly doubt "family values" is a religious thing for conservatives. It's to preserve a state of belief in morality and culture. Libertarians advocate no different.


marriage is where libertarians and conservatives differ drastically in opinions.

A libertarian would say the State has no business licensing marriages at all, and thus gays should be allowed to get married in any private church that is willing to perform the ceremony.


Many libertarians believe marriage should be at a state level (unless you intended to mean federal by "state) and this is why they tend to oppose any federal mandate to legalize gay marriage. But you are correct, most libertarians do differ on gay marriage as opposed to conservatives, but then again isn't this true conservatism? The belief that sexual preference should be your business, that you should not have to be discrimminated against? Why should you have to call yourself a libertarian in this case if it is those who oppose this who are in direct opposition to true conservative values. It's similar to a liberal such as myself holding the belief that government does have a role in providing a safety net for society. Another liberal who believes in complete deregulation and privatization would not really be a liberal. The same for socialists or communists. It makes no sense to move into a new brand of ideology because there is a group that have betrayed these original fundalmental policies.


Of course, the constitution is clear that the government shall not recognize any establishment of religion. Marriage is an establishment of religion.


I actually made a thread on this a while back and I am in full agreement with this, its good to have something that I atleast agree with you on mnemeth1.

My point is, why should true conservatives rebrand themselves because there are those who betray those true ideological policies and core beliefs. It makes absolutely no sense to me. I mean I recall that the idea of libertarianism really took rise in 2007, I felt this was an attempt to rebrand conservatism after it's tarnished image following the actions of the Bush administration.
edit on 26-11-2010 by Southern Guardian because: fixed



posted on Nov, 26 2010 @ 03:02 AM
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Originally posted by Judge_Holden
reply to post by mnemeth1
 



"If he is a libertarian, why has he been a republican congressman for more than ten terms?"


He explained why he left the libertarian party several times. It has nothing to do with his views and everything to do with how government has established a two party framework that is nearly impossible to penetrate as a third party candidate.


"Also, I am aware that he ran for president as a Libertarian in 1988, but he eventually re-entered politics as a republican. What TRUE libertarian would do that?"


One that knows he'll never get elected running on a third party platform. Ron Paul's goal is to take over the republican party with libertarian candidates and return the republican party back to its earlier libertarian platform.


"Seeing that he is a registered republican, has served as a republican for over ten terms, and suppots many republican causes (introduction of pro-life legislation, support of capital punishment, push for heavy boarder patrol, backing of the We the People Act, among others) would it be wrong to say that he is a Republican with some libertarian leanings? "


Being a libertarian does not make one in favor of abortion. Ron Paul is against the State's use of capital punishment. Ron Paul is also for open borders AFTER the socialist welfare state has been deconstructed. And the "we the people act" is a pure libertarian 10ther piece of legislation.


edit on 26-11-2010 by mnemeth1 because: (no reason given)



posted on Nov, 26 2010 @ 03:09 AM
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reply to post by Southern Guardian
 


Trust me, the neo-con's don't want to be branded as libertarians and the libertarians don't want to be branded as neo-cons.

Both have a large amount of animosity toward each other.



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