Friday, September 01, 2006

The Difference Between Libertarians and Republicans

Sometimes people ask me what the difference is between Ls and Rs. Both claim to be fiscal conservatives, so what would a Libertarian do different if elected to a position such as Secretary of State. After all, that office is not legislative. It cannot raise a tax.

That is true. What is also true is that the office has a budget, so it spends tax money. The Secretary of State interprets its' statutory obligations and sets policy accordingly. The current Secretary of State is a Republican. I am a Libertarian candidate for Secretary of State.

My objective would be to consume only 90% of the budget allocated to me, and to return the remainder to the taxpayers. I believe this should be the goal of every elected official who heads a department and commands a budget.

Also, as chief of the Securities Division, I would never have authorized publication of a 12-page glossy booklet called, "Money Skills For Newlywed Couples". While the info contained is sound, (it is essentially a reprint of a lengthy Kiplinger's article,) and it is plainly a good idea for married couples to have financial goals and plans, it is not the proper role of our state government to provide this kind of service. This is where Libertarians and Republicans differ. The booklet was produced under a Republican.

The booklet notes that, "The Investor Education Program and the creation of this brochure were funded with proceeds from investment fraud legal settlements".

I believe that the proceeds from investment fraud settlements should go entirely to those defrauded, not towards producing glossy booklets with the office holder's name prominently displayed. Investor education is the responsibility of the investor.

Republicans may talk about being fiscal conservatives, but when the rubber meets the road, they expand the scope of government and its' activities, which is the antithesis of fiscal conservatism. SOS press release for the booklet.

To be fair, I've never heard the Secretary of State describe himself as a fiscal conservative. Maybe it's not on his radar.

So, if you want the Secretary of State to contribute to smaller government, there are two choices out there- Republicans and Democrats. Those who want smaller government need to vote for me, Mike Kole, for Secretary of State.

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