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"America has two great dominant strands of political thought - conservatism, which, at its very best, draws lines that should not be crossed; and progressivism, which, at its very best, breaks down barriers that should never have been erected." -- Bill Clinton, Dedication of the Clinton Presidential Library, November 2004

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Friday, August 29, 2003


what use to libertarians?

posted by Aziz P. at Friday, August 29, 2003 permalink View blog reactions
Jim Henley, libertarian stalwart, writes of the libertarian fear that a vote for Dean is a vote for higher taxes and a bigger federal government:

Of course, a vote for Bush is also a vote for greater federal spending and a bigger federal government. Taxes are, for the moment, lower. How long will that continue with a budget deficit approaching half a trillion dollars? Not long, I think, which is why I opposed so many of the Bush policies (and non-policies) that have contributed to the deficit. A vainglorious war, a complete lack of spending restraint, the elimination of not a single substantial federal program in three years, expansion of existing entitlements - well, it adds up.

And steel tariffs. And catfish import bans. And yadda yadda yadda. Two factors are at work here: the issues on which conservatives and libertarians have never agreed have become more salient, and on the issues where conservatives and libertarians traditionally have agreed - taxes, trade, federalism - conservatives increasingly suck. Having abandoned the substance of limited government since early in the Gingrich "revolution," conservatives increasingly eschew even the rhetoric of limited government. Animosity aside, they're just no use to libertarians any more.

All this will change again six months into the Dean administration.

It's a good day for Dean in the Blogsphere - righty-OxBlog blogger David Adesnik also has a spirited defense of Dean from the "birkenstock liberal" typing of the NYT. So-Called Liberal Media indeed!


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About Nation-Building

Nation-Building was founded by Aziz Poonawalla in August 2002 under the name Dean Nation. Dean Nation was the very first weblog devoted to a presidential candidate, Howard Dean, and became the vanguard of the Dean netroot phenomenon, raising over $40,000 for the Dean campaign, pioneering the use of Meetup, and enjoying the attention of the campaign itself, with Joe Trippi a regular reader (and sometime commentor). Howard Dean himself even left a comment once. Dean Nation was a group weblog effort and counts among its alumni many of the progressive blogsphere's leading talent including Jerome Armstrong, Matthew Yglesias, and Ezra Klein. After the election in 2004, the blog refocused onto the theme of "purple politics", formally changing its name to Nation-Building in June 2006. The primary focus of the blog is on articulating purple-state policy at home and pragmatic liberal interventionism abroad.