From the Editor:
Well, this is jolly good. Looks like we indeed have some readers in the United Kingdom. We posted an article yesterday, "UK Independence Party compared to US Libertarian Party." It was merely an excerpt of an article that ran in HuffPo.
HuffPo, Robin Koerner, Publisher, WatchingAmerica.com, "The Liberty Movement Must Ask the Most Important Question":Well, Nic Connor and Mark Wallace from the UK wrote to us, Mark: "Erm, 3 of the 4 people in your "UKIP" photo are not and have never been members of UKIP - I'd suggest you should maybe take it down?" Nic took it a step further: "Shame in the photo 3 of the 4 young Libertarians are still in the Party in the UK has more Libertarian members and beliefs: The Conservative Party. I know this as I am one of them."
The only British political party that describes itself as libertarian is the United Kingdom Independence Party, or "UKIP". Twenty years ago, it did not exist. Today, it has the support of anywhere between 7 percent and 14 percent of the British electorate. This rise from non-existence to a force in British politics so powerful that even the mainstream media have begun to identify it as the biggest threat to the governing Conservative party is all the more remarkable because the majority of the British electorate doesn't actually know what the word "libertarian" means. UKIP is in fact a vote for a pro-free-market, pro-national-sovereignty, pro-individual rights, small-government philosophy...
On our side of the pond, the much more robustly libertarian "Libertarian Party" of the United States, is more than twice as old as UKIP... the liberty movement [in the U.S.] looks even weaker when one considers that the USA is (arguably) the most libertarian country on the planet and (less arguably) the country with the most libertarian founding narrative.
We occasionally get things wrong here at LR. And as editor, my very formal apologies to our British friends, Mark and most assuredly Nic. But it gave me an opportunity to look into Nic a bit. Seems he's involved with The Bow Group, sort of a UK equivalent of the Heritage Foundation, with maybe a sprinkling of Cato. From their website:
The Bow Group is a leading Think Tank based in London. Founded in 1951, the Bow Group exists to publish the research of its members, stimulate policy debate through an events programme and to provide an intellectual home to Conservatives in the United Kingdom. Although firmly housed in the Conservative family, the Bow Group does not take a corporate view and it represents all strands of Conservative opinion. (Emphasis added)I love that "whilst." Why is it that the English speak English so well?
The Group aims to preserve the academic rigour of its policy papers, whilst promoting an inclusive environment for political thought; to cleverly brand policy ideas without compromising the political ideas that underlie them; to work with the Government of the day but not to shy away from pointing out its weaknesses. Most importantly, the Group aims to provide an excellent service to its members and to enable them to have a direct impact on political discourse and the life of the nation.
Once again, our sincerest apologies to Nic. We wish you good cheer, and all that. We here at LR support both the UK Independence Party AND the libertarian-leaning wing in the Conservative Tories. Talley-ho!