Wednesday, June 13, 2018

I Knew This Was Coming

At the post, What Trump Accomplished in the Summit With Kim Jong un, a commenter writes:
Is Trump better than Hillary yet?
My point in supporting a Hillary over Trump in the 2016 presidential race was always strategic. That is, I view both as evil but that from a libertarian perspective, Hillary would be a much better recruiting tool for libertarians.

Trump has sucked the blood out of the libertarian movement in a manner that is worse than the draining of libertarian energy under Ronald Reagan.

Here's Murray Rothbard on that draining:


Trump is worse. A cult of personality has formed around him that has sucked in a lot of libertarians. But he is pretty much bad on everything.

The easing of tensions with North Korea is largely the effort South Korean President Moon Jae-in. Now that man is a skilled negotiator, who was able to keep Trump focused on a future Nobel Peace Prize, despite neocons buzzing everywhere.

But to give full-fledged support to Trump because of the Singapore summit is to get emotionally overwhelmed by an event involving a president who has remarkable authoritarian instincts.

Let it not be forgotten that he nominated Marvin Goodfriend to become a member of the Federal Reserve. Goodfriend wants tracking threads in currency and is in favor of negative interest rates.

Trump is tariff happy.

And worst of all, under his watch, as a deterrent, illegals are being separated from their children. That is sick. And you have to be sick to give a full-fledged endorsement of Trump with this going on.

There is nothing wrong in cheering Trump when he moves in the direction of liberty but to put Trump in a general positive light when he mostly acts in an authoritarian manner is a big mistake.

The task for libertarians is not to join the Trump cult followers but to point out to the Trump fanboys the oh so many times that Trump moves away from liberty.

That is a herculean task given the skilled marketer that Trump is and his ability to generate mass enthusiasm among a good chunk of the population.

He even sucks in some people who read Target Liberty.



  1. To me, they both advocated very bad policies. Trump was worse on trade and immigration. Hillary was worse on business/gun regulation and probably war. On policy alone, neither was obviously worse.

    The reason I preferred Hillary was because she was so deeply unpopular. Even her supporters were pretty grudging about their advocacy. She would have found it extremely difficult to build coalitions and to actually implement very many of her bad policies.

    Trump, on the other hand, had far more enthusiasm behind him. To be sure, a good portion of the country hates him, but a distressingly significant portion believes that he walks on water. Hillary never had anywhere near that kind of support. She’s boring and ineffectual: about the best that libertarians can hope for in a politician.

    If Sanders had won the nomination I probably would have rooted for Trump, since Bernie DOES have some enthusiastic support, and also his policies were so bad that I viewed them as unambiguously worse than Trump’s.

  2. "The easing of tensions with North Korea is largely the effort South Korean President Moon Jae-in. "

    Yes it is. But Trump manipulated, shamed, the governments of South Korea and China to do something about North Korea. They took the call to prove Trump wrong about them and got it started. Now was that Trump's intent or just dumb luck?

  3. I listened to a podcast with Thomas Sowell this morning and he stated that during the 2016 campaign that Trump was the better choice because it would be easier to impeach him. I kinda like that idea - Hillary doesn't get in, and if Trump is really so terrible he can then be removed through impeachment. Impeaching Hillary would have been more difficult with her getting the majority of overall votes and being first female president.

  4. I don't see why Hillary would have been a better recruiting tool for libertarians. Trump is terrible on economics, is authoritarian, and is aggressive in foreign policy. There is a lot there for libertarians to challenge. It seems like any president is fertile recruiting ground for libertarians. Each one is worse than the last.

  5. I don't know which side to be on this debate. On one hand I think the US govt has already sown the seeds of its own collapse, and maybe the sooner the better with more leftists in power. If the States broke up, I'm convinced things would be better for most of the people. On the other hand, looking at the slow and very painful decay of some latin american countries, I'm glad Donald Trump can appoint more conservative justices to the Supreme Court. Maybe they can push back enough for people to have a decent life, especially relative to other countries. The governing system we have now is terrible, and we need to be prepared for potential bad times. I'm not sure what a revolution will bring for me and my children. One thing is for sure- we need to keep spreading the message of Liberty!