Barr: Personally Qualified

What qualifies a person to be president? Well, apart from the legal qualifications outlined in the second Article of the Constitution, I think it’s personal.

Bob Barr on Sarah Palin:

reason: Are you more qualified for the presidency than Sarah Palin?

Bob Barr: Absolutely. That takes nothing away from her. She may have been a very good governor, these last two years, of Alaska. She may have been the very best mayor that Wasilla, Alaska has ever had. That is not the same as having two degrees in international relations, having worked in foreign intelligence for a number of years, working as a U.S. attorney, spending eight years in the Congress, and having lived overseas. That’s a higher level of development and understanding of foreign relations. I have it. She doesn’t. [link]

So with all the hype for or against Sarah Palin, the fact remains that she is not running for president. John McCain, Barack Hussein Obama, Bob Barr, Ralph Nader, Chuck Baldwin, and a few others ARE running for the office outlined in Article II of the Constitution. A sincere voter should, ideally, weigh the various options, look over their credentials, consider their plans and intentions, and whichever candidate measures up should be the appropriate selection.

Unfortunately, the office of the presidency has become far more than what is Constitutional. As the legislature becomes weaker and the judiciary and executive (including the bureaucracy) become stronger, the emphasis on the presidency becomes the most hyped up. Every four years the American is bombarded by the media with the melodrama of presidential politics. We’re always teetering on the edge of collapse if we don’t elect so-and-so, and usually it’s because the other guy is far worse.

This year, since “None of the Above” is not a legitimate option (though I think it should), I’ll be voting for the person who has experience in government, the conscience to admit mistakes, and the plans and intentions that measure up to the desire for a more prosperous America.

I’m often told that I must vote for either McCain or Obama. Why? I ask. Aren’t they pretty much the same in every significant way?

I thought Thomas Woods made a good point:

On taxes, the Democrat favors a top income tax rate of 39.5 percent, and the Republican favors a top rate of 35 percent. Well, ain’t democracy grand! We get to debate a whole four and a half percentage points. [link]

It’s pretty much the same with every issue: How long should we have our military in this foreign country or that? How much of our money should we get to keep? How much of the Constitution is to be taken seriously? . . . and so on.

Since the threat to national insecurity, Ross Perot, ran for president in 1992, the so called “third party” candidates have been increasingly thwarted by the partisan duopoly. When will Americans get a clue and start participating and fighting to change this? While we still have the opportunity, shouldn’t we fight for and support those who actually stand for something?

Since the second World War, we’ve found ourselves in perpetual war and having a military presence throughout the world; we’ve become less independent consuming more than we produce; we’ve allowed our basic property rights and human dignity to be violated by a bloated state that can’t even support itself financially; we’ve allowed the dumbing down of our young people via federal intervention in the education system; and via that same federal intervention, and its alliance with a few corporations, it’s become increasingly difficult to either come by or afford decent and humane medical treatment.

I’m one of those “old-fashioned” Americans who has hope in the free enterprise system and market solutions, respect for human life and dignity as expressed in the Bill of Rights and in laws designed to protect life and property, and who has an innate recognition of the imperfection of humanity, so I don’t blindly trust our government. Somehow, I have this feeling that I’m not alone.

Sometimes, I’m asked, “What are you?” as if my political opinions qualify me for a particular personality cult. I tell people that, politically, I’m a libertarian, and I usually add, “that’s a small ‘l’,” just to rouse their curiosity.

For those who know about Austrian economics or the classical liberal tradition, that small “l” makes a difference. However, that description is not the same as an identity. Too many get those things confused.

I’m not big on the Libertarian party and the Randian cult. I’m not even big on the idea of political parties at all. However, in the current situation that we are faced with today, I can’t help but listen to my conscience and support peace and freedom. I actually believe that Bob Barr is the most qualified candidate on the ballot.

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