Libertarians in search of friendly home...


More on the lost tribe of American politics - I speak of libertarians, of course - as they wander through the wilderness seeking comfort and sanctuary and a place where they can live free and die content:

At Cato, David Boaz makes the point that "If Republicans can’t win New Hampshire and the Mountain West, they can’t win a national majority. And they can’t win those states without libertarian votes."

Meanwhile the Corner's John Hood agrees: "Both parties are coalitions. The Democratic coalition, if it coheres, can win without libertarian-leaning folks. The Republican coalition cannot."

You would think this might concentrate Republican minds. But I wouldn't bet on it doing so. I mean, it wasn't just cynicism or makwishness that produced the Terri Schiavo travesty.

Libertarians best hope may be that Republicans realise it profits them nothing to pile up votes in the south if this costs them the mountain west. But that's the sort of lesson normally learnt only in defeat.

Right now, as Brink Lindsey observed in his TNR essay: " the first decade of the twenty-first century, the rival ideologies of left and right are both pining for the '50s. The only difference is that liberals want to work there, while conservatives want to go home there."

Spurned by the right, unwanted by the left: no-one ever became a libertarian because they craved the applause of the crowd...