Wednesday, October 13, 2004

Oh, Canada; Oh, America

Yesterday, Alan at Occam's Carbuncle noted this Volokh Conspiracy post about the state of free speech in Canada. Today he has more to say about the state of affairs in Canada:
...Clearly, most Canadians do not share my aversion to the Liberal brand of pernicious quasi-socialism, a system of government whereby the state assumes the burden of individual conscience and acts as overweaning bookkeeper to the populace, while maintaining the facade of prosperity, freedom and justice via creaking centrally planned and controlled core institutions like medicare and the Supreme Court. To me, the disadvantages of such a system are immediately evident. They are evident in the grotesquely high taxes I pay, in the minutiae of invasive regulations that pervade our lives, in the institutional rot of our government, in the systematic destruction of our once proud military, in the contempt for the public purse now increasingly coming to light....Reason, patriotism, tempered strength, honesty, love of freedom, a firm grounding in the very best from our history; these are the qualities that will be necessary to stem the socialist tide in this country. Socialism is, at its root, born of a dim, fearful view of life as a never ending series of risks to be averted. We, as libertarians and conservatives, need to help people to wake up to the idea of life as a continuous stream of opportunity.
Substitute "Americans" for "Canadians" and "Democrat" for "Liberal" and what Alan says is wholly applicable to the U.S. We're just a few strides behind Canada on the road to serfdom.

I agree fully with Alan's idea that libertarians and conservatives must sell people on the advantages of liberty. It's necessary, at times, to attack and expose the idiocies of the left. But we must also make it clear that libertarianism and old-fashioned, small-government conservatism are positive philosophies -- philosophies based on the principle that people are better off when they rely on themselves instead of "big brother".