PLATFORM OF THE LIBERTARIAN PARTY OF KENTUCKY
As amended in Convention March 2, 2019
As Kentuckians, we share a tradition of independence and personal responsibility, and we stand against any government that would tell us how we should live our lives. We take care of each other, and we do so voluntarily. We believe in freedom, and we believe that the more government we have, the less free we are.
Individuals are inherently free to make choices for themselves and must accept responsibility for the consequences of the choices they make. Our support of an individual’s right to make choices in life does not mean that we necessarily approve or disapprove of those choices. No individual, group, or government may rightly initiate force against any other individual, group, or government.
Libertarians believe rights only belong to the individual.
Our most fundamental belief is that individuals own their bodies and have rights over them that other individuals, groups, and governments may not violate. Individuals have the freedom and responsibility to decide what they knowingly
and voluntarily consume, and what risks they accept to their own health, finances, safety, or life. On this, our platform is built.
Today and Tomorrow: Libertarians are firm defenders of all of your civil liberties. As long as you do not force or fraudulently coerce someone else to participate, you have the right to do anything you want.
Drugs and Alcohol
Today: Since 1971, the United States government has been at “war” with drugs. There has been a “war” on alcohol for even longer. This has stifled our liberties, which are intended to protect us from the government. In actuality, there has not been a “war on drugs and alcohol”, but a war on individuals’ behavior. As we saw with alcohol prohibition between 1920-1933, the “war on drugs” leads to a
violence and encourages a criminal element, which very destructive to society.
Tomorrow: We believe that the government should let individuals transact with others voluntarily when and how they see fit, even when it is self destructive, and that we should not have the state intervening to protect us from ourselves. We call for the full legalization of all drugs, as well as alcohol, their use, distribution, and their manufacture. Given that we believe that if there isn’t a victim, a crime hasn’t been committed a crime against one’s self is not a crime at all. That being said, crimes committed concurrently, that do have a victim, should be prosecuted appropriately.
Alcohol Prohibition and Regulation
We call for the elimination of the Kentucky Alcoholic Beverage Control and the three-tier system.
Today: Marriage is a legally sanctioned contract between consenting adult persons. The character and content of which people of different cultures, religions, and world views define differently. Government should not have the authority to define, license or restrict personal relationships. Consenting adults should be free to choose their own sexual practices and personal relationships.
Also, Government should not have the authority to require that people personally or professionally recognize, or participate in the celebration of marriages of which they do not approve.
Tomorrow: Marriage should be a legal contract that confers duties and obligations upon the parties that enter into it, and not to others who are not a party to the contract. The creation or termination of which should be regulated by the parties involved and the mediating organizations that they belong to: Civic organizations, churches, and courts.
Today and tomorrow: The crisis in health care, especially with respect to ever-rising prices, is due to heavy government involvement in health care. Medicare, Medicaid, and licensure laws directly increase the cost to the consumer. The federal government created the now-problematic HMOs in the 1970s–why would new government regulation or nationalized health-care do any better today? These laws and programs should be repealed in favor of a totally free market in health care.
Recognizing that abortion is a sensitive issue and that people, including Libertarians, can hold good-faith views on all sides, individual candidates and party members should be asked their view on the issue.
State Sponsored Murder
Today: Governments should not kill people. Democide or ‘death by government’ is state sponsored murder and was the leading cause of death in the 20th century; it should not be in the 21st century. In the circumstance that the state is complicit or enables the termination of life of civilians, those state sanctioned actions shall be condemned as democide and government actors held judicially
Tomorrow: We envision a society free from the terrorism of state sponsored murder. The Constitution reserves the power to determine the definitions of murder, manslaughter and justifiable homicide to the states; therefore, any means by which democide is employed should be immediately refunded on the federal level & delegated to the states for independent legislation.
Today: Given the state of education in Kentucky, The Libertarian Party of Kentucky calls for a voucher system, to open the school systems to the free market. The funds that Kentucky has already allocated for your children’s education could then be redirected into an educational program of your choice. This will quickly improve the quality and lower the price of education in the state of Kentucky.
Tomorrow: In the long-term, libertarians call for the complete separation of school and state, which means the repeal of school compulsory-attendance laws and school taxes –- that is, the complete end of all governmental involvement in education. This would mean a completely free market in education, in which consumers decide the best educational vehicles for their children and
entrepreneurs (both for-profit and charitable) are meeting the demands of the consumers.
Today: No person has the right to pollute the property of another. Therefore, we support the use of courts to sue those who destroy the property of another.
Tomorrow: Governments are the largest destroyers of the environment. In fact, most environmental problems can be traced to public, not private, ownership of resources. The solution is to reduce the scope of government, and privatize public property to the maximum extent possible.
Today: We should begin to bring home any and all military operations not currently engaged in any direct war-time operations. We should continue to encourage a timely exit from those countries in which we are currently engaged militarily. No country, including the United States, has the responsibility, nor do they have the right, to impose their way of thinking on another country. It would
have cost less to bring the peace-loving people of Iraq and Afghanistan to the United States than to “liberate” their country; both in dollars and in lives.
Tomorrow: Libertarians oppose involvement in all foreign wars as well as all foreign aid. The U.S. government should be limited to only protecting itself from direct invasion. We should learn the lessons of Vietnam and Iraq, and not involve ourselves in the affairs of other nations.
Today and Tomorrow: People have a right to resist the tyranny of their own government and to protect themselves from the violent acts of private criminals. The second amendment is about protection of self from all who would do harm, including government. We call for a repeal of all laws which violate our right to bears arms. This does not, contrary to those who often argue against this freedom, include munitions (such as nuclear weapons).
Restoration of Rights
Today: Currently there are criminal offenses which have no victim. As Libertarians we believe that criminal behavior is constituted by using force against the rights of another, or through coercing them by means of fraud to willfully accede. If a “crime” is committed with neither element of force nor fraud, it should not be a crime. Likewise, anyone convicted of such an offense should have their constitutional and civil rights restored. These rights are rescinded by a jury of peers but can only be restored by a single executive.
Tomorrow: When a person has served their sentence for a non-violent felony conviction, upon their release or the completion of such probation or parole requirements, their constitutional and civil rights should be automatically restored without any requirement for action from a government official.
Libertarians support free markets. We defend the right of individuals to form corporations, cooperatives and other types of entities based on voluntary association. We oppose all forms of government subsidies and bailouts to business, labor, or any other special interest. Government should not compete with private enterprise.
Money and Financial Markets
We favor free-market banking, with unrestricted competition among banks and depository institutions of all types. Markets are not actually free unless fraud is vigorously combated. Those that enjoy the possibility of profits must not impose risks of losses upon others, such as through government guarantees or bailouts. Individuals engaged in voluntary exchange should be free to use as money any
mutually agreeable commodity or item. We support a halt to inflationary monetary policies and unconstitutional legal tender laws.
The Income Tax
All individuals are entitled to keep the fruits of their labor. We call for the repeal of the income, and inheritance taxes, and the abolishment of the Internal Revenue Service and Kentucky Department of Revenue.
Taxation Without Representation
Today: People work in one municipality, and live and vote in another. Yet they are taxed by the municipality in which they work, and have no say in how it is governed nor how it taxes its residents. Special Taxing districts are ruled by unelected boards, generally appointed by the Judge/executive or Mayor or a combination of those or other unelected members. Unelected persons have no
accountability to the public and should not have authority to levy taxes.
Tomorrow: “Taxation without representation” was one of the prime issues that the American Revolution was fought over. Why would we let it continue today? We absolutely cannot support any municipality taxing anyone who cannot vote for or against that taxing body. All special district taxes should be voted by elected representatives or by the people at large who will be paying the taxes.
Today: The Libertarian Party of Kentucky calls for an immediate end to taxation on Social Security payments. Social Security was promised as a retirement plan, and has delivered barely enough for our seniors to survive. This should also be an important lesson for all who believe that government-provided benefits are the best solution.
Tomorrow: Libertarians believe that it is morally wrong for a person to use the state to take what doesn’t belong to them, and therefore seek a repeal of Social Security.
Today: The Libertarian Party of Kentucky recognizes that multiple generations have grown up in the welfare system, and have no actual concept of a life outside of that system. Therefore, we propose that all basic civil service jobs that require minimal education or skill be given to those on welfare roles, as a term of their continued receipt of welfare. Additionally, welfare should not pay more than
minimum wage, as this provides a disincentive for those on welfare to exit the welfare system.
Tomorrow: Libertarians seek a repeal of all welfare primarily on moral grounds but also on the terribly destructive aspects of government welfare programs. Government welfare creates a sense of hopeless dependency on the welfare recipient — no one is made a better person because the state is taking money from one person in order to give it to another person. People have a right to their own earnings and no one has the right to take money from someone else against their will.
Today: The Kentucky Bill of Rights, Section 6 states: “All elections shall be free and equal.” Kentucky’s primaries are publicly funded but have become biased regarding non- establishment candidates and/or minor parties.
Tomorrow: We envision a more egalitarian ballot access system, employing representative democracy to adhere to the Constitution of the Commonwealth of Kentucky. These processes should be wholly self -funded by their respective parties.
Religious Law in Courts and the Legislature
Today: Many laws on the books are archaic and based solely on the religious views of the lawmakers.
Tomorrow: Laws should be impartial to religion, as they are with race, gender and social status; therefore having a law based solely on a particular religion would be discriminatory to those of other religions, or of no religion. Forcing people to superficially follow the laws of a religion does nothing to further one’s faith in any meaningful sense. Courts also should not base rulings on religious law, whether
it be Levitical law, Shariʿah Law, or any other religious code of conduct.
Deprivation of Life, Liberty or Property without Due Process
Today: The US Constitution states that “no State shall deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law”; yet property is commonly seized from citizens with no charge, trial, or any semblance of due process. This is commonly known as civil asset forfeiture, where the police or the courts can and do seize property without charge or trial.
Tomorrow: Like with many other issues, we need to return to the principles laid out in the United States Constitution. To deprive anyone of any property, liberty, or even their life, due process (which means being charged with a crime based on evidence, then a trial by jury), is an absolute necessity to prevent arbitrary confiscation of property and violation of liberties of the innocent, policing for
profit, and tyranny.
Transparency and Accountability
Today: Kentucky is one of the most corrupt states in the nation. Meetings that should be public are done in secret. Government officials engage in violations of the law that are ignored, or their fines and settlements are paid by the people.
Tomorrow: Fines and penalties from the misconduct of politicians should not be paid by taxpayers. Kentucky must adhere to the 1976 Open Records Act (KRS 61.870). We call the create of a website with a searchable database with all applicable meetings, and record available on demand, free of charge. The government exists to protect individual rights, not to act as a permanent ruling class. No government official, elected or appointed, can be exempted from any law or regulation. If the law is unjust, it needs to be repealed.
Today: Kentucky farmers face many government restrictions on their free trade which unnecessarily raise costs for both producer and consumer. “Food safety” laws, many of which are arbitrary and/or were written by lobbyists have created a market that favors factory farms over smaller family farms, distorting the market without actually making food safer at all.
Tomorrow: We seek to remove these obstacles and permit farmers and consumers to engage in trade at terms of their own choosing.