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I am curious about our resident Libertarians.

What are your stories?  

Have you lived in other countries or traveled away from where you grew up?

Have you lived in big cities in this country or do you feel more comfortable in small, rural or wilderness communities?

What life experiences have brought you to your philosophy?

And yes, have you been oppressed?  How?

I am reading an ebook by a man who grew up urban poor in Massachusetts.  His story is not too out of the ordinary in my observation but it is interesting to hear about his experiences growing up as a disadvantaged white boy.  His story could have easily been mine if I had been born a boy. 

I really want to know from real persons telling their own stories and not just talking points.

Tags: Libertarian, life, philosophy, politics, story

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I have flirted with Libertarianism for much of my life.  I will try to answer your questions as simply as possible and maybe expand the answers later.

1. Lived in for a period exceeding a month: US, Italy, Germany, Turkey, Viet Nam.

    Traveled in for a period exceeding 1 week. The above plus; England, France, Switzerland, Austria, Panama, Greece, Israel.

     Traveled in or through but not over one week per trip. Mexico, Canada, 

2. Cities lived in: Big cities;Pittsburgh, Dallas, El Paso, Albuquerque, Houston, Austin, Denver:

                           Small cities, Charleston, WV, Parkersburg, WV, San Angelo, TX,

                           Small Towns, St. Albans, WV, Cocoa Beach, FL, West Union, WV, Harpers Ferry, WV,   

                           Warner Robins, GA, Leesburg, VA, Pepperell, MA, Tinton Falls, NJ, Killeen, TX.

3. Rural Areas,  WV, CO, NV,

4. Traveled in and visited friends in: 21 States not previously mentioned. There are only 4 states that 

     I haven't at least set foot in.

5.  Life Experiences; To many to document here. I have been a registered Republican, an Independent, and am now a Democrat. My wife, with my support, ran for and was elected to local government as a Libertarian in the early 90s. She is now a raging activist in the Democratic party in Virginia. She is now also my Ex. but that had nothing to do with politics.

6. I have never felt that I was oppressed. I spent 22 years in the US Military to insure that I and you would continue to enjoy the rights and freedoms of this country.

7. In parting I will say that I feel that we are closer to losing those freedoms than we have ever been in my lifetime.  To all the strict constitutionalists: I do not understand how you can observe the changes that have taken place in the last 70 years, let alone the last 236, and think that set of rules  written at the start of that period could still be used, with no admendments or deviation of meaning, as the strict law of the land?

Hey Robbie, I am new around here. This discussion looks old, but I was interested in what you said.
The fact that you have been on more than one side of the spectrum made me think to engage you in a conversation.

I grew up liberal democrat oriented and open minded towards socialism and communism, and have found myself to now feel more in line with those that are Constitutional originalists.

I too agree with your point about us being closer to losing our freedoms than ever in this country.

I came to this website hoping to find people that were able and hopeful about having productive conversations that increased everyone's knowledge, insight, and understanding.

I think that the concepts of the founders that focused on trying to establish a government that would help to ensure the inalienable rights of it's citizens and personal freedoms and liberties  was a monumental accomplishment, that knows few equals.

I think that we have drifted way off course into a government now that is not only very inefficient and characteristically "unrepresentative" but also very contrary to principals that served to underlie and influence the minds of those that came together to establish this "Union."

If you are interested in sharing, please let me know of your thoughts. And anyone else.


Thanks much!

Thank you, Robbie.  I am grateful to learn more about you and your values.

I may have always been a Libertarian at heart.  My children's primary school emphasized freedom and responsibility working together.  The other parents and I developed this philosophy on its founding and this alternative public school program has thrived and remains successful today.

On the other hand, my cultural background is Scandinavian with a heavy emphasis on community cooperation.  Those values influence me strongly and today I consider myself to be a Progressive.

I don't begrudge paying taxes, but when I see them being used to destroy other countries and people rather than nurture, employ, build and educate our own, I wonder how we got to this state and why people think these are American values. 

Thirty years ago Libertarian goals were somewhat different than what the party stands for today. The Cato Institute at one time stood for freedom and liberty for the individual. Then it morphed into an organization that concentrated more on free markets than on free people. It and its followers dragged the Libertarian party in that direction. Totally free unregulated markets will not increase individual freedom.That leads to Monopolies which destroy freedoms.

I could go on and on but have come to think it a waste of time and effort.

 

I agree with the waste of time and effort stand.

Once when I was visiting St. Louis, I visited the Westward Expansion museum in the base of the Gateway Arch.  One of the displays was the founding platform of the Republican Party.  I was amazed to see how far from its core values it has come, too.

i dint lack nobidy a'tellin me whut i could or couldnt do

Clod is awn targit. It tain't the gubmint's job t'tell nobody whut tuh do. That there is OUR job.

!!!FREE SPEECH FOR THE DUMB!!!

 

I am a Centrist

I may dabble in extremes from time to time, but I believe in balance/equilibrium. I am doubtful of people who go to any extreme. I am ambivalent of the Libertarian philosophy that advocates maximum liberty in both personal and economic matters. I believe that the human species is savage by nature and if left unchecked, Social Darwinism will take over.

I understand that not all people may agree with me, but life's experiences lead me to believe otherwise.

I would like to ask what is the Libertarian definition of freedom?

My political stance:

http://www.theadvocates.org/quiz

That was an interesting and easy quiz, Maricel.

I took it and was not surprised to be classified as a liberal.  I retook it with a little firmer attitude toward my answers and still came out a liberal. I was surprised at that.

I came up as Centrist.

I came up a left liberal. I fantasize about a global community, having no general labels for people, and everyone having at least the basics to live. And no religious or political tyranny making people afraid to live, choose what they will or won't do with their own bodies, create, make new discoveries, or be comfortable in their own skin. I love this fantasy and it influences how I vote, among other things.

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