Fifty years ago on a sunny Sunday morning in April, I was watching a television program (channel 7 in New York) about Passover. Although I don’t remember the specifics of the whole program, I do remember vividly a statement made by Rabbi who responded to a question from the host, “The essence of Judaism is the sanctity of the individual” (emphasis added).
When I heard these words and realized that the uniqueness of every individual human being is the core of our journey in life, it was not long after watching that program that I learned about libertarianism and how this political philosophy dovetails with Judaism. In fact, after I was the New Jersey’s Libertarian Party’s nominee for governor in 1997 I was invited by Rabbi to speak to his congregation on a Friday night. My topic that evening was in keeping with what I heard 20 years earlier, “Why Jews should be libertarians.”
My message that evening nearly 20 years ago was clear. Given the history of the Jews, government is the last institution they should trust. And the fact that Moses gave the world the Ten Commandments, two of which are the foundation of libertarianism, “Thou shalt not steal,” and “Thou shalt not kill,” Jews should be in favor of either a stateless society or very limited government in which the “government fears the people” and not the other way around.
Human beings have no right to kill and steal, even if they are “elected” by the people or appointed and serve in a government position, i.e., president, cabinet official, Supreme Court Justice, governor, mayor, or legislator.
I incorporated the above ideas with the publication of my book, in 1995, Tax-Free 2000: The Rebirth of American Liberty.
Fast-forward to Tuesday’s presidential election. We have seen Hillary Clinton as First Lady, US Senator, Secretary of State and now presidential nominee. To put it mildly Hillary’s record is clear, she is the antithesis of a fundamental “natural right” principle, namely, that individual human beings are sacrosanct, the essence of Judaism.
From her support of abortion, including partial-birth abortion, to her proposal to increase taxes, to her support for the federal government intervening in virtually aspect of life, to her support of the Federal Reserve’s money-printing policies, to her support of an unlimited welfare state, to her support for overthrowing foreign leaders, to her desire to escalate military confrontation with Russia and other nations around the world, Hillary loathes individualism and is a threat to world peace, and thus should not exercise the enormous powers of the presidency. And with the architects of neoconservative foreign policies squarely in her corner, do we want more undeclared wars under a Clinton presidency?
A Hillary Clinton presidency would be a great leap forward in collectivism, unless of course everything she says in public is the opposite of what she would do as president. Given the fact that Hillary said in one of her highly paid Wall Street speeches, a candidate needs to have a public position and a private position, she could be a “closet” Jeffersonian.
Would a Hillary Clinton presidency fool us? Would she be for lower taxes, less spending, sound money, fewer regulations and a noninterventionist foreign policy? Should we gamble that the real Hillary is a libertarian at heart? I doubt it.
I have not endorsed a presidential candidate nor did I endorse anyone for the GOP presidential nomination. Donald Trump is no libertarian or quasi-libertarian. A Trump presidency would be as many pundits have written, a “gamble.” The issue before the American people and is very simple, which candidate poses the greatest gamble for the American people, and based upon their statements during the presidential campaign, Hillary’s belligerent foreign policy disqualifies her from occupying the Oval Office.