The face of popular protest against dreary centre-ground politics has emerged. Just about everybody is in agreement that the face is nationalist and populist.
Donald Trumps’ inauguration speech and the executive actions he has taken since becoming president seem to confirm this. Disappointingly these headwinds of popular discontent have very little to do with libertarianism.
Since the 2008 financial disaster, the freedom movement has been growing. However, I can’t help wondering almost a decade later if the libertarian moment is finally over?
It would seem that in the wake of the great Credit Crunch libertarians have upped their profile. But have we reached our high water mark?
In the last ten years, there has been an outpouring of good quality Libertarian leaning literature (admittedly as well as a whole lot of awful stuff). People who represent freedom oriented positions have been heard in popular discussions and libertarianism has provided a popular non-Marxist outlet for discontent.
We have gone from being a microscopic section of popular opinion to being merely marginal. Not an easy transition to make. Certainly, Libertarians still have no influence in mainstream politics but that is hardly surprising.
However, the libertarian movement is not about to retreat because there is still a great need for libertarianism.
Governments are still ready to trample on the freedom of their people. Furthermore, the disastrous financial policies that triggered chaos in 2008 are still in place today and look set to implode again in the near future. In a world of closing borders we need voices of tolerance that are pragmatic rather than hysterical.
The libertarian moment is not over yet.