Definition of Political spectrum

Suppose, politically, you are “pro-choice” – not selectively (arbitrarily) but on everything. You believe each individual should be free to choose, should coerce no one, and should bear the responsibility for his choices and actions. If so, you are principled about liberty. You exhibit integrity. You’re pro-choice consistently, not a hypocrite who upholds liberty in one realm while denying it in others. You recognize that rights are indivisible, that civil rights and property rights imply and reinforce each other, and that to violate one set of rights is to threaten the other.

Sadly, there’s little place for you in today’s conventional political spectrum. The political “left” purports to consistently uphold civil rights, yet rejects the sanctity of property rights and economic liberties, which means they don’t defend rights across-the-board, in principle; no wonder then, that over time they’ve also gradually come to condone some violations of civil rights. The political “right” is no better: it purports to consistently uphold property rights, yet denies various civil rights; thus they too don’t defend rights in a principled manner; no wonder then, that over time they’ve also come to condone interventions in the economy.

Even Ron Paul, widely considered to be consistent friend of liberty and rights, has long denied a woman’s right to choose on matters of abortion; on this and other issues (gun rights) he complains only if the federal government violates rights, but has no problem if the states do so. Again, this is not a consistent defense of liberty and rights. Nor is it credible to try and defend liberty or rights on ideological grounds that tend only to erode liberties and rights. The best case, I would submit, is that rights and liberties redound to our rational self-interest.

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