This is an entirely new segment I thought I’d try out, my initial idea was to rank every single parliamentarian on their voting record and things they’ve said, but this way is a lot easier to adjust from month to month and politicians may one day wear it as a badge of honour.
The award is for a parliamentarian, either a Member of the House or a Senator, that has done the most to further the cause of liberty in the past month.
My original choice and now runner up is The Hon. Member for Griffith Kevin Rudd who has done more to convince people of the stupidity and futility of government than any parliamentarian who calls themselves a liberal or libertarian ever has. One has to wonder whether he isn’t secretly a libertarian, trying to discredit all the statists.
But in the past few hours more events have transpired and someone else has surpassed him in furthering the cause of liberty, and this time it seems as though it was more intentional.
So the inaugural recipient of ALS Libertarian of the month award for February is:
The Hon. Member for Wentworth and Shadow Minister for Communications and Broadband Malcom Turnbull MP, for calling for a vote of no confidence against a government that has destroyed a budget surplus, increased the already mind boggling regulations on businesses, continued to roll out middle class welfare and introduced arguably the stupidest merger of environmental and economic policy ever.
A no confidence vote will mean an election, which is a great opportunity for libertarians to campaign and vote for the most libertarian candidates they can find. While the tide of public opinion is opposed to the current government the public going to be voting against the new regulations and back towards freedom. So if there is an election, we may only go from socialism, to slightly less socialism, but at the moment we should be grasping at any freedom we can get and with the entire libertarian community’s support we may even see some candidates with actual libertarian ideals get elected.
While Turnbull may not be as pure of a libertarian as most of this blog’s readers, he does know that policy has to have more than just good intentions to work, and that if a government’s policies are failing, no matter how well intentioned they are, then it is time to get rid of that government. That is a big thing for an Australian politician and that spark of common sense is why he is my pick for this week.
Feel free to use the comment section to let me know who would be the best pick for next week’s award.
To qualify as libertarian of the month wouldn’t Turnbull have to be… a libertarian? Would a libertarian advocate an emissions trading scheme?
Turnbull is only criticising the present government because his party doesn’t run it. He is guilty of all of the things he is accusing it of. An election will not mean a reduction in socialism, it will just mean a change from one socialist party to another socialist party. This is a fight between socialists. Two competing brands of the same product. Two criminal gangs fighting over the same turf.
A few years ago, I suggested that, if I won big on Lotto, then I might start a St. George medal to be given to anyone who has actually rolled back the state or bureaucracy. I still think this would be a good idea. Have a dinner, and present the awards for dragon-slayer of the year! A great way to highlight liberty, and reward such people. Any millionaires out there prepared to try it?
I’m not saying Turnbull is a libertarian, I’m just saying of the 226 members of parliament (house and senate) this month, Turnbull has been the best at promoting the cause of liberty. If we only picked actual libertarians, there wouldn’t be anyone winning the award.
But loki3, if there’s any instability, such as an election, it means we at least have a chance to elect candidates with a hint of libertarian ideals, if you read the article you’ll see I nearly picked Kevin Rudd because of all he’s done for decreasing faith in government.
I think Turnball qualifies for the title not based on his personal libertarian, but the fact he has promoted ideas that identify the silliness in the bureaucratic bullshit that is government. I commend Dom’s choice, because he is correct when he pointed out that we don’t really have an ideological libertarian to give the award to.
LIBERTARIAN OF THE MONTH AWARD?? In 2009, the entire carbon emissions trading operation of Constellation Energy was purchased by Goldman Sachs In Australia, Malcolm Turnbull, ex leader of the opposition sided with the government and pushed the global warming policies to the total disregard of the Australian people and the Liberal Party. Malcolm ( Used to work for Goldman Sachs) invests a lot of his money in climate change ; In less than 12 months the savings of millions of people will vanish and Goldman Sachs will be even more rich ; Previous requests to Malcolm Turnbull to declare his financial interests in Global Warming through Goldman Sachs and carbon trading have been met with a stony silence. The hypocracy of all the politicians stinks to high heaven.
So much for life in what used to be called ‘The Lucky Country’. There is no real political opposition here that works for this country and its people so another election will only give us a modified plan which will morph into the monster currently being unleashed. These people including dear old Malcolm are only there for an ego trip and to line their pockets a bit more. WAKE UP!!!!
The award is strictly based on his actions this month, read the article. You’ll see that they need not be intentional, I nearly gave it to Rudd.
Also from all your off-topic ranting about Goldman Sachs, you should know investors gave them their money, knowing full well that they might lose it, or at least they claimed they knew so. All investment carries risk, everyone knows this, no one is immune.
^ I think wreckedearth’s point about Goldman Sachs is that they made that money purely off the back of government support of climate change industries. People invested money on the understanding that it was a legitimate industry. The government and GS knew better and they got to keep their money. It was an investment scam. Yes, the investors are still responsible for where they invest, but that doesn’t absolve the people running the scam.
I also agree with WE (I read your article – it is still wrong) that you can’t be a libertarian by accident. All that such “actions” mean is that even crooks have to do and say the right thing some of the time, if only to give the rubes the impression that they are genuine.
“If we only picked actual libertarians, there wouldn’t be anyone winning the award.”
You could have given it to me.
I don’t think we need to get too extreme. We should be encouraging anyone who is fighting the expansion of government into new areas. I get the impression some people in the libertarian movement reject the idea of market failure or any role for government in providing public goods.
What was your first clue, Campbell? The fact that some people call themselves anarcho-capitalists? And the definition of ‘extreme’ depends on the average, doesn’t it? I.e., who you let in. Incidentally, this very blog was established by, anongst others, John Humphreys, who describes himself as an anarchist.
“I don’t think we need to get too extreme. We should be encouraging anyone who is fighting the expansion of government into new areas. I get the impression some people in the libertarian movement reject the idea of market failure or any role for government in providing public goods.”
Neither Turnbull or Rudd are fighting expansion of government. They are the ones doing the expanding. Anyhow, Dom says the award is just a gag. He’s awarding it to big government politicians who slip up and do something in the interests of liberty, or a forced to do it for the sake of their agenda.
“I get the impression some people in the libertarian movement reject the idea of market failure or any role for government in providing public goods.”
Governments do nothing but make market failures worse. Name public goods which government provides better than private business can.
Defense, traditional welfare like the aged pension, access to education and healthcare for the poor.
I’m not saying how we do those things now is ideal, but whether it be through vouchers or a public system some sort of public funding address an unaccepatable market failure.
“Governments do nothing but make market failures worse. Name public goods which government provides better than private business can.”
Policing. Defence. Rule of Law. Management of monopoly rights.
Basically things you do not want exposed to a profit motive.
“Defense, traditional welfare like the aged pension, access to education and healthcare for the poor.”
Defense is a state matter, However, a private military could serve that purpose just as well. Military concerns presently are largely contracted to private interests. Without massive taxation and inflation and the effect of other kinds of government intervention on the cost of living, people can save for their retirement. And have money to spare to pay for their children’s education. In hard cases, church charity organisations used to provide education, health care and aged care, and very well.
“I’m not saying how we do those things now is ideal, but whether it be through vouchers or a public system some sort of public funding address an unaccepatable market failure.”
Is this really a libertarian blog?
” “Governments do nothing but make market failures worse. Name public goods which government provides better than private business can.”
Policing. Defence. Rule of Law. Management of monopoly rights.
Basically things you do not want exposed to a profit motive.”
I’ll let you have Defense and Rule of Law, though they are not “goods”. Management of monopoly rights? First, in a free market, achieving a monopoly is difficult to impossible. Second, government anti-monopoly laws work to assist monopoly in practice. Just as the government “war on drugs” spreads drug use.
The thing you “libertarians” seem to be missing is that there is no difference between a crooked opportunist in business and a crooked opportunist in government other than that the crook in government has greater power over more people. Politicians have a profit motive every bit as much as a businessman does.
I will admit the whole award thing can be seen as pretty much a just a gag. Keep in mind we’re not all anarchists, Justin happens to think that government has some use, it’s fine to disagree with him and still be a libertarian, but for the moment I think we can all agree that government is way too big and anything we can do to slow, let alone shrink it’s growth is a good thing and once it’s down to only controlling 10% of our lives we can have that conversation, and alienating non-anarchists isn’t going to help our cause. It’s based on the naive hope that if a politician sees a group of voters giving him an award for something he did, he’ll try to do it again. But on the most part it’s getting the site more traffic and I’m happy with that.
What about self-defence? What about county militia? What about part-time paramilitary groups? I think we could do without a permanent army- if all people who wanted the rights of citizens were prepared to shoulder an equal burden of defending their county.
Good point Dom. We might argue about how much government is necessary but presently we have a long way to go down before we reach anything solid regarding justification for the amount of government.
The principle I stick to is not to do with how much government intervention is necessary, but what kind. There are two categories of government intervention, one just and the other unjust. Government intervention which protects individuals from violation of their liberties by other individuals is legitimate. (The only argument is whether or not it is NECESSARY for the government to serve this role.) Any other kind of government intervention is itself a violation of individual liberty and is therefore criminal.
National defense may be in the first category.
Goldman Sachs’ Turnbull gets a libertarian award? This is an idiot who never saw a dumb leftist sacred cow that he didn’t like. A global warming fraud believer. An absolute disgrace. Slipperier than a brand turd, he designed his own special carbon tax. Whose next week? I can see this is going to be like the Nobel peace prize.