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« Trivia Tidbit of the Day: Part 597 -- San Antonio Success. | WILLisms.com | Trivia Tidbit of the Day: Part 599 -- The Democrats' Global Warming Tax. »

Trivia Tidbit of the Day: Part 598 -- Freedom in the 50 States.

More Democratic, Less Freedom-

Small-L libertarians should not be Democrats.

Far too often, I hear from young Americans that they aren't totally thrilled with the Democrats, especially on taxes and spending. They also don't really like some of the hyphenated interest-group politics that dominate the Democratic Party. However, how could they possibly vote for Republicans? That's just crazy, because the Republicans are far too stuck in the 1950s and want to take away basic rights and freedoms to advance their socially conservative agenda.

My response is almost always to ask people what freedoms they lost under President Bush. Only some of the time, the answer is, "the Patriot Act." Notwithstanding that almost every Democrat in Congress voted for the Patriot Act, the few people who name the Patriot Act can't name a single thing that the Patriot Act did to allegedly take away their freedom.

My next response is typically to ask what other freedoms they lost under Bush. Few can ever name anything, and when they do, it's something silly like "stem cell research" (which was never even banned under Bush-- in fact, he was the first President to fund it with federal dollars).

Finally, I generally make the point that economic freedom leads to economic success, which leads to personal freedom, not the other way around. While many Republicans became enamored with earmarks and balked at entitlement reform, the Republican Party is still the best avenue for limited government, free markets, and smaller tax bills. The Republican Party is also the best avenue for the advancement of freedom of speech, respect for the 2nd amendment, respect for religion, respect for parental rights, and protection of private property rights.

The Mercatus Center at George Mason University recently released a study on personal and economic freedom in states confirming all of this; it turns out there is a correlation between less freedom and a higher percentage of Democratic vote (link):


Looking at some of the other graphs in the study, many states with low economic freedom also have low personal freedom. Meanwhile, a lot of states with high economic freedom also have high personal freedom. This could get into a chicken/egg argument, but when you look at the top states for each type of freedom, including personal freedom, most of them are pre-Obama red states, while most of the worst states for freedom are deep blue states.

Texas, for example, ranks #4 in fiscal freedom, #27 in regulatory freedom, #7 in economic freedom, and #5 in personal freedom. Overall, Texas is #5 in freedom (.pdf):


Meanwhile, "progressive" states like Vermont, which people assume is very free due to their pro-2nd amendment laws and gay marriages, score poorly. Vermont is #47 on fiscal matters, #39 on regulatory matters, #45 on economic issues, and #11 on personal freedom. Texans have more personal liberty than residents of Vermont. Think about that. And think about the fact that Vermont is #40 overall. Then look at a big, liberal state like New Jersey (.pdf):

New Jersey is ranked #49 overall. It's near the bottom of each type of freedom. It is instructive that New York, New Jersey, Rhode Island, and California make up the bottom four states for overall freedom, and those states also just happen to have some of the highest out-migration rates in the nation. People are moving to where they can be free, and it all starts with economic freedom.


Previous Trivia Tidbit: Successful San Antonio.

Posted by Will Franklin · 26 May 2009 11:56 AM


Great post, Will.

Posted by: ZsaZsa at May 26, 2009 05:17 PM

The GOP should admit that they screwed the pouch. Forgot who or what brought them to the Congressional dance. While they are at it, they should apologize to the decedents of slaves for the
Compromise of 1877 which ended reconstruction. This resulted in the Democrat party becoming the party of Segregation and Jim Crow laws. Note that for 100 years, the Democrat party liberals had no problem welcoming the racist branch of their party into their BIG tent. It is usually the most liberal elements of a community that get upset when a minority moves into a neighborhood - even if the man of the house is a vice-president in a fortune 500 company.

Next, explain that Conservatives believe in the fundamentals of the founding fathers. It is the MSM, given credibility by certain elements of the party, that have redefined the term Conservative as religious fanatics. In fact, the Republicans are far closer to Jeffersonian Democracy than the Democrats.

Republicans must show that they are not hyphenated Americans. They are Americans of X (ethnicity) decent. Heck, there are regions in the US were local radio stations play polkas, with a few waltzes thrown in, all Sunday afternoon. Other areas have celebrations where people wear wooden shoes or even look a lot like Riverdance. No matter what your ethnicity, that is impressive. But so are Flamingo dancers.

The ideas that bind most Republicans are not based on race, creed, or gender. This was the theme of Ronald Reagan and one of the principals of the founding fathers. Okay there was that 3/5ths rule about slaves, but it was the Republican party, and its first president Abraham Lincoln, often quoted by President Obama, - (Note that he can't quote a well known Democrat of that time about these issues) - who ended and corrected that blot on our Constitution.

The principle of Republicans should be to teach people how to fish and not take fish from others for the "greater good". Okay, in the short run that may be necessary. But if a program is not moving people to independence, the program must be revised or terminated.

Illegal immigration must be stopped. The Democrats, which has practiced identity group politics since FDR, see undocumented workers as a voting block. Elements of the Republican party see this group as cheap labor. Both are wrong. These people are exploited effectively one step above slavery. They also take away jobs from legal immigrants. The party is not anti-immigrant, just illegal immigration. According to anthropologists, even what are called Native Americans are immigrants.

For the young people out there, which is really anyone not on Social Security, your screwed! There is NO WAY you can just tax the rich to cover all of the Obama administration and Democrat Congress spending!

Will: Note the graph of part 595. The Republicans lost there way after the "Good old Boys" of the party threw out Gingrich. I yield back the balance of your blog.

Posted by: JGsez at May 27, 2009 01:01 PM