Taylor Dinerman, a professional New York City journalist and long time Samizdata reader, sent us this short and incisive article on the impact of blogs and libertarian ideas on the current political environment.
Over the years I have come to the conclusion that most things in this universe revolve around a) The law of gravity and b) The Law of Supply and Demand.
The best case for this is the way the US election is being impacted by ‘New Media’. The combination of Talk Radio, Fox News and the Blogosphere made it impossible for the traditional Big Media to ignore the Swifties. Thus John Kerry’s character and personality were exposed in ways that would never have come out if it were up to just the New York Times etc.
The demand, in the US, for a non left wing media was always there, it was just when Limbaugh and the others showed that one could make money at it that others came in. The Blogs were more a pure product of technology but the demand for people all over the world to make themselves heard could not be held back. The flow of ideas is frankly, amazing.
Libertarian ideas have tended to triumph over the long term because they are better adapted to human nature. Sadly, resistance to these ideas is also deeply ingrained in the hearts of men. It is interesting to see how difficult it is to make people accept things that are manifestly in their own interest. While the ideas tend to win, libertarian leaning politicians tend to loose. Newt Gingrich was probably the most libertarian major politico in recent history, he was easily defeated by Clinton even while slick willie was grabbing his major ideas such as welfare reform.
Bush on the other hand pays little serious attention to libertarian ideas, but he may move America closer to those ideals with his ownership society set of proposals, than Newt ever could.
The point is that Libertarian ideas have become the ‘default’ position for the Republicans in the same was that socialist EU-centric ones are for most European politicos.