Wednesday, 6 March 2013

Am I a libertarian?

I feel that my main responsibility is to watch my own behaviour and not to interfere with the behaviour of others (except in exceptional cases).  It doesn’t bother me in the slightest that E+E live in a clan marriage or that my elder daughter is co-habiting with her boyfriend. Similarly I don’t know and I don’t care what religion my neighbours practice. I have a moral framework that suits me – one that has developed over many years – and I would regard it as unacceptable, almost laughable, for me to attempt to impose my system of beliefs on anybody else.

So for example if somebody wants to meet up with a few like-minded people in a former warehouse under the guise of calling it a church go ahead, I would be the last person to interfere.  Providing of course that not one penny of my money is used to subsidise their operation.  I would say that groups like that should not attract tax breaks of any form. If I allow them to receive any of my money then I am in effect accepting that their rights are more important than mine.  
I am comfortable with the idea of a central government that provides services that it would be difficult to arrange at the local level. But the breadth of my comfort zone is, to some, surprisingly narrow. As an example I would not subsidise the railways by a penny.  If current users don’t want to pay the increased fares that would result then employers would have to raise salaries or move the business to where the people were. Their choice, their freedom if you like, but they shouldn’t look to me for money.  The total cost, both human and financial, of the centralisation of business activity in London is mind bogglingly large and it comes out of the pockets of us all.

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