Libertarians and traffic lights

2 years ago, during the congressional campaign, the League of Women Voters sponsored a debate in Livingston, NJ. Because the town is split between the 8th (where I live) and the 11th Districts, Congressman Frelinghuysen and his opponents were also invited, in addition to me, Pascrell, and Green Party perennial candidate Joe Fortunato. Frelinghuysen drew 3 opponents, a Democrat, a Constitution Party guy (I think) and a Libertarian named Austin Lett.

I must admit, Lett stole the show that evening. He had the audience laughing with his no-holds-barred plans to slash and burn the federal government down to practically nothing. He shocked the audience by admitting, that as a Vietnam Vet, he sent $25 to the Swift Boat Vets for Truth group to embarrass John Kerry. His plan for education, if I recall correctly, was essentially to shut down every public school, pay each teacher a $1 bonus, and ask them to invest that $1 in running the same school as a private institution.

Indeed the audience found his ideas intriguing, even if they were a little out there. One woman turned to her husband and said, "wow, he's got some really interesting ideas, don't you think?"

The man turned to her with an incredulous look, and dismissively replied, "Are you kidding me? If people like that were in charge, we wouldn't even have traffic lights!"

and so goes the fate of Libertarian candidates...

the man and woman in the audience were my parents. And, thanks to Ed for re-invigorating my interest in Libertarian philosophy.

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