All the hip liberals are dogpiling on libertarianism this month, and skillfully missing the point. Apparently the lure of libertarians potentially voting Democrat in the face of Bush’s overspending is too much for some.
The question is not “would it be OK to let everyone in the world own nukes right now?” That’s a very easy one. “No, it would be pretty much completely not be a good idea.” The question is “Would this be a better world, and if so, what do we need to do to get there?”
In the debate which is the primary target of mockery, Richard Epstein is taking precisely that approach. Randy Barnett and David Friedman are not, mind you, which goes a long way towards explaining why I don’t self-identify as a libertarian.
But it is important to remember that a hundred years ago, concepts such as welfare seemed hopelessly utopian. Things change.