Before we look at each of the positions I will take, I just want to point out something that should be obvious. People disagree.
We are all individuals with different minds , priorities, ideas, passions, likes, dislikes and desires.
What then can we agree on? I am going to make the humble suggestion that we can start by agreeing to defend the rights of individuals to decide as much as possible how to live their lives. With this as the basis for looking at the issues we can seek policy that tries its best to accomplish that goal, without making those that disagree with you criminals.
When government makes policy that policy becomes not only the "winner" but all those that wish to oppose it become criminal. Whenever possible I am suggesting that we make government policy at the state and local level instead of at the Federal level, this will allow at the very least for people to move to a state or town that allows the freedom they seek, while allowing others to live under the government policy they seek. The U.S. Constitution does a great job of showing us where the federal government has authority to act and where is does not, and I do not believe we have done a good job following those rules.
One last concept I would like to address before looking at each position, I do not think we address how much overlap issues have with each other. Politicians try to use sound bite answers that address the talking point they want to advance, but rarely do they talk about how much they affect each other.
For instance immigration, taxation, the welfare state, and the war on drugs are deeply intertwined, so understanding a single position requires knowing how that position effects all of the other issues it impacts. please keep that in mind as you read through the issues.
I support the fair tax proposal as a model for tax reform as our presidential candidate Gary Johnson does. This is not by far what most libertarians would call as the perfect way to address taxation, but it has many elements that are a significant improvement over what we have today. It would eliminate the use of the IRS as a tool to target political enemies, Individuals would never have to file a tax return again, Visitors to our nation would become taxpayers for the duration of their stay, there is a mechanism to prevent the poorest of Americans from having to pay federal taxes. and my favorite, if you chose to stop purchasing new goods and services to protest what the government is doing with your money, you would not be thrown in jail.
This is an achievable first step in meaningful tax reform that is long overdue in our nation, it has some support even among some of our current elected officials, and while not being perfect, is much better than the system we have today.
The Federal war on drugs:
Another issue where Washington and the elite that run our nation are completely out of touch with the public. The Federal Government should start by removing marijuana from the class one schedule of controlled substances. Half of the states have changed the cannabis laws to allow medical marijuana and the federal government needs to stop threatening citizens of these states. From there we should be able to tell if that action was not a mistake, and if it was not we should continue to look at the issue of ending the drug war.
The Welfare state:
Another controversial area where the Federal Governments one size fits all policy has not reduced poverty and has contributed to the huge 20 trillion dollar national debt. Let's start by eliminating federal charity programs and block grant the money to the states, where 50 laboratories of innovation can try new ideas to find more effective ways to help those in need.
If you can see where the general idea is going based on the above topics you can see how they all impact the topic of immigration It is my contention that if we get busy with common sense tax reform, ending the war on drugs, and decentralization of the welfare state, the topic of immigration becomes less of a problem. Again I stand with the Libertarian Presidential candidate Gary Johnson calling for making it easier for people who want to come to our country to work to get a visa after passing a background check. We can use this a basis of immigration reform that currently makes it nearly impossible for entry level labor workers to enter the country legally.
I believe that our foreign interventionism has had the unintended consequence of making us less safe rather than more. If elected I would be a skeptic about interventions in the affairs of foreign nations. I would also propose eliminating all U.S Federal aid to other nations, not because I think its a bad idea to help those in need, but because I can't in good faith force your neighbor to donate to them if they disagree. It's time to replace the government's role in this with private charity and allow all citizens to donate to other nations as they see fit.
The adoption of the Fair Tax should mean an increase in jobs for all of us, coupled with excessive legislation that force jobs out currently. The government has no legitimate role in creating jobs, however its policies can certainly create a climate that fosters job creation or opposes it.
The fourth amendment to the Constitution has been under attack for too long. Your privacy matters, it was important enough to inspire our founders to create an amendment to secure it. The Federal Government has been violating this right to privacy by monitoring your phone calls and electronic communications without warrants or any due process and it needs to stop.
I believe that individuals should be making choices in your personal life as long as they do not harm others or deny their liberty in doing so. and I will oppose those in Washington who want to deny these important freedoms.
I signed a pact with all other Indiana Libertarian congressional candidates stating I will support legislation to enact term limits on our representatives in Washington. I want to be clear that I am somewhat skeptical on whether this will actually produce the desired effect of reducing the cronyism in Washington, but at the very least I don't see it doing any real harm. I will honor my pledge and vote to enact them.
Competitive free markets and property rights stimulate the technological innovations and behavioral changes required to protect our environment and ecosystems. Private landowners and conservation groups have a vested interest in maintaining natural resources. Governments are unaccountable for damage done to our environment and have a terrible track record when it comes to environmental protection. Protecting the environment requires a clear definition and enforcement of individual rights and responsibilities regarding resources like land, water, air, and wildlife. Where damages can be proven and quantified in a court of law, restitution to the injured parties must be required. When Proper damages are awarded to individuals who were damaged by pollution, corporations will have to care about the damages they may be causing.
There are increasing calls for government regulation and intrusion into the Internet. Just recently, Congress passed so-called Cyber Security legislation, which, like the Patriot Act, gives bureaucrats in Washington, D.C. the power to monitor and collect information about our private lives. Some politicians have gone so far as to suggest the government should have a “kill switch” for the entire Internet!
Other politicians are even demanding that unelected agents of the government be granted special “backdoors” into encrypted and private data so they can gather confidential information without anyone knowing about it. Security, they argue, depends on the mass collection of personal and private data. I disagree with those demands. the Federal Government does not need to fix any aspect of the internet, your privacy and our ability to innovate is at stake. I will not vote give the government an Internet kill switch.
Finally we come to the topic that is quite possibly the most divisive facing us today. Libertarians believe in the rights of individuals. Pregnancy is condition that produces two individuals occupying the same space. It is the only circumstance where this occurs and produces two schools of thought on the issue. There are Libertarian arguments for both pro choice and pro life. What would I do as your rep in Washington on this issue? I would work to keep the federal government out of the issue, perhaps even proposing a constitutional amendment to do just that. I talk to many passionate people on both sides of this issue, many can produce logical arguments about why their position is superior. Perhaps we should consider allowing the states to handle this issue, that way those who care enough about this issue can at the very least move to a state where the law is what they want and they can go to bed at night knowing that they live in a place that has embraced their view. It is the only thing even resembling a compromise on an issue that really has no compromise.
Federal agency are often conducting raids and seizing assets prior to indictments, and without due process. In many cases it becomes very difficult for innocent individuals to recover their personal property. Policing for profit is not conducive to a peaceful and prosperous nation. I will work to oppose this practice at the federal level.