For most libertarians, their first stumbling block to the philosophy was how those in need will receive assistance. Even those that count themselves as party founders still probably get a little hot flash of anger when someone calls them “heartless” or “selfish.”
Libertarians are usually driven to the philosophy of non-intervention because they’ve witnessed first-hand how a government program, policy, or regulation is negatively affecting their community and they want to make a change.
Matt Zwolinski has written a great article at the Daily Caller entitled, “How libertarianism Helps the Poor.”
When I tell people that I work for the Libertarian Party, I often hear:
“Everybody knows that libertarians are greedy capitalists who favor the maximization of profit above all else. “Taxation is theft!” they cry, but the exploitation of the working classes fails to elicit any similar moral outrage. Libertarians, everybody knows, care about the rich to the utter neglect of the poor and vulnerable.”
Zwolinski’s article gives 3 fantastic rebuttals to this notion.
1. “The first mistake is to believe the government when it claims that its policies are intended to help the poor. They almost never are.”
2. “The second mistake is to confuse intentions with results. Even if government policies were intended to benefit the poor, we would have good reason to expect them to fail”
3. “The last mistake is to think that a concern with regulation and taxation is the sole defining feature of libertarianism. Libertarianism is about individual liberty, and while economic liberty is a part of that, it is not the whole. “