Minnesota Libertarians announce "evolutionary" legislative agenda
The LP of Minnesota has come up with a "Legislative Agenda for the New Century" -- a series of legislative proposals that state Libertarians plan to promote in 1999.
"While rooted firmly in Libertarian philosophy and principles, this legislative agenda spells out an achievable agenda for Minnesota state government that will enhance the life, liberty, and opportunities for prosperity for all Minnesotans," said Craig Westover, who is coordinating the project.
The party's legislative agenda consists of seven policy sections -- ranging from reducing the state government's impact on "civil society" to reducing taxes, and from initiating structural reforms in state government to increasing protection of civil liberties. When finalized, the agenda will be made available to state legislators.
Each policy section has specific legislative proposals "for comprehensive change, limiting the scope of state government and moving toward a greater level of liberty," said Westover.
While some of the proposals are radical and some are incremental, the legislative agenda acknowledges that "political liberty is an evolutionary concept," said Westover.
"To make political progress toward maximum liberty, a legislative agenda based on principle must compromise with the prevailing and restraining values of the majority of society," he said.
"Can Minnesota achieve maximum liberty? That is a debate for philosophers. Can and should Minnesota move toward a state of maximum liberty, and will that enhance prosperity for Minnesota? That is the debate engendered by this LP legislative agenda proposal."
Some of the specific policy proposals that Minnesota Libertarians advocate include:
"Philosophically, libertarians might argue for a [more] revolutionary campaign for individual freedom based on the planks of the LPMN Platform," acknowledged Westover. "However, the political reality is that an electorate composed of coalitions of interest groups, feeding at the trough of government programs, requires a utilitarian as well as a principled reason to discard its government security blanket. Thus the need for this legislative agenda proposal."
If implemented, the Libertarians' proposals would move Minnesota "toward a prosperous society based on the principles of maximum liberty," he said. "This legislative agenda is no more [and] no less than a blueprint for returning Minnesota to the principle of constitutionally limited government."