Libertarians believe in freedom, that individuals should be allowed to do what they please, as long as it causes no harm.
No victim – no crime. Any type of governmental intrusion into people’s lives is viewed as an assault on personal freedom. While some individuals will engage in stupid and reckless behaviour, so be it, this is their chosen path. The majority of individuals will make reasonably logical decisions, and those that pursue dangerous options will invariably suffer for their stupidity.
We are living through extremely strange times. The march of this virus across the globe has seen a range of governmental responses. In Sweden, life has continued largely as it was. Older people were encouraged to self-isolate, while the young and healthy were allowed to go to work, walk the streets, eat in restaurants, and drink in bars. At the other end of the spectrum, many residents of Wuhan, China were welded into their homes with iron bars, and advanced tracking systems were deployed to ensure complete compliance. History will determine which response proved most effective, not just in health outcomes but also economic results.
The Australian Response
The Australian response began somewhere in the middle of Sweden and China. Sensible behaviour was initially encouraged, groups were limited to 500, then 50, then 10. Infection numbers were relatively low, fatality rates even lower, and it seemed the island nation might be spared the worst of it. In recent days, while the infection curve seems to be flattening, laws have become significantly more draconian. No more than two individuals may congregate.
Huge fines have been dished out by power-drunk police officers for a range of completely innocent behaviours. A Sydney man was fined for sitting on a park bench eating a kebab. A Melbourne mother was fined $1652 for taking her daughter on a driving lesson. A Victorian couple was fined for sitting in their private vehicle “without a valid reason.” Individuals have been fined for being outside of their home without a valid reason, a phrase that seems to be cropping up regularly.
The reason libertarians regard their freedom so highly is that they harbor a distrust of authority. The history of the twentieth century reads like a warning not to trust those in power. Governments, police forces, armies, and courts routinely overstep the boundaries within which they should act, and individuals suffer. Power is taken in a time of crisis and never surrendered. Personal income tax was a temporary measure to help Western nations win WWII. The events of 9/11 saw the spying on millions of innocent citizens.
If governmental trust is going to hold during the long, torturous months that lie ahead of us, as individuals get restless, bored, anxious, suspicious, and depressed, the powers that be need to wield their power very cautiously. The laws that have miraculously sprung up overnight – are parliaments even sitting, how is this legislation being enacted – will need to focus exclusively on health.
Sitting on a park bench is not a health issue, no lives are in danger. No victim – no crime. Driving lessons are completely safe, the roads are largely empty. No victim – no crime. Walking along a deserted beach is good for the soul. Leaving the house for no reason, to get fresh air, sunshine, and a new perspective is a positive activity, everyone should be doing it. One should provide no explanation for walking the streets if one chooses to do so. Imposing ridiculous restrictions is counter-productive, everyone loses. There is only so much tyranny people can handle.
Where to From Here?
The race is presently on for a vaccine. Leading the pack is former Jeffrey Epstein associate Bill Gates, a man who has undertaken a complete recreation in recent years. Gone is the Microsoft villain who was repeatedly charged with antitrust, monopolistic behaviour. In his place, the saviour of the planet, who wants to microchip the world’s population, right after they have been mandatorily vaccinated. Gates has emerged as the foremost medical expert on a range of issues despite never having trained in that field in any capacity. He donated some cash, and now virtually controls the World Health Organisation. He openly proposes slashing the world’s population via the use of vaccines, somehow.
Libertarians ultimately believe in the right to choose, even when it comes to health. Governments of all persuasions are presently parroting lines from the Bill Gates playbook. If you want to return to work, you will need to be vaccinated. If you want to travel, you will need to be vaccinated. If you want to interact with other people, you will need to be vaccinated. This pandemic will not be over until everyone has been vaccinated, and so on. This is extremely troubling to those that believe in freedom.
Will the population just roll over and accept a ‘new normal’ as more and more choices are ripped away? Who knows. Time will only tell.