A comment in the post below expressed bemusement that Rudy Giuliani could find sympathy amongst those with Libertarian tendencies. This poster seems to recall Hizzoner as a “gun grabbing”, “police state” mayor.
I understand the question. You have to look at it from a perspective that respects one of Libertarianism’s fundamental requirements of the State: That of protecting private property.
Giuliani’s priority as Mayor– the reason he was elected– was to make the City safer and more pleasant. Read that as “Protect their private property.”
Hence this person’s perception of him as a “gun-grabbing” and “police state” mayor. I think Giuliani was wrong at the time with his handgun lawsuits, but he thought he had two opposing freedoms he had to prioritize: Civil order and the right to defence. I am a pretty dogged 2nd Amendment advocate, but even I can appreciate how the priorities of NYC in a crime wave and Idaho are different, and probably require different approaches. So while aspiring to be President, it is natural for Giuliani to become more sympathetic to gun owners, which he has.
It is enlightening to also understand that the protection of private property is why– as a mayor rather than the President– he was Libertarian-ish on immigration. He wanted illegals to be comfortable dealing with the local gendarmes so they could report on the bad apples.
Some suggest the Mayor has been doing a lot of flip-flopping. Without getting into semantical arguments, I think it is important to understand that those issues on which he has drifted rightward merely reflect differently weighted priorities of two different jobs: That of Mayor of NYC and that of President of the United States. As he has pointed out, it would have been easier for him to just complete the flip-flop and lie. A look at the GOP field illustrates at least one candidate who is comfortable doing this. One thing, though, that appears to be consistent with the Mayor is that at the core he is driven by a respect for the freedoms of law-abiding individuals to pursue their own happiness, and an understanding that it is the State’s role to defend these freedoms.
I do not at all suggest that Giuliani would be at home in the Libertarian party. I do suggest, though, that he is Libertarian-friendly: His first priority is to protect your property and civil society in general. His second priority– as evidenced by his actions in NYC and the associated favorable reviews from the Club for Growth and endorsement by Steve Forbes– is to minimize the vigor with which government dips into your bank account. After that, he pretty much feels the states should decide on all the culturally divisive social issues.
That, I say, is pretty Libertarian friendly. Does he buy into Libertarian ideology? Probably not, as his habits of character can be quirky and pretty hierarchical. Note his apparent distaste of ferret owners. But when the time comes in a general election for Ron Paul supporters to pull a lever, I hope those that aren’t using their support for Paul merely a way to promote isolationism will do the needful and vote for Giuliani rather than staying home or voting for his opponent.
Assuming, of course, Hizzoner can secure the nomination, which is a whole ‘nother article, as Nordlinger says. I am not entirely sure how Paul’s supporters effect that process. Not much, I tend to think…