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the resurgence of liberty

Political awareness and activism at the grassroots level is rising in the United States. The political spectrum in the United States is changing. Long seen as one-dimensional (left vs. right), there has been a strengthening and orthogonalization of at least one more axis -- that of liberty, and the lack thereof. Libertarianism is most certainly on the rise -- with a rising concern, across all demographics, for broader economic (laissez-faire capitalism and Austrian economics) and personal freedoms (civil libertarianism). While a majority of the new libertarians come from the right, there is also growing number of left-libertarians as well as a significant exodus of liberals and progressives toward classical libertarianism.

Fiscal conservatism is a defining characteristic of the traditional right-wing. This ideology is generally hawkish on spending, budget deficits and taxes and moderate on business regulation and social safety-net programs, advocating for fiscal and monetary restraint and balanced budgets. Fiscal libertarianism takes these attitudes a step further -- advocating for laissez-faire capitalism, free(er) markets and the reduction of taxes, entitlement programs and regulatory burdens, and, in general, the reduction of the size and scope of governments. 

The new libertarians share with most conservatives a disdain for the bloated, elitist nanny-state and bureaucratic welfare-state engendered by statist progressive (and, occasionally, "compassionate conservative") policies. They are also characterized by a disdain for political-industrial complexes of various shades (e.g. militaryprison, etc.), and, recently, are increasingly concerned with civil liberties and with emphasizing a non-interventionist foreign policy. In these latter two regards, they have much in common with many liberals (except only, perhaps, the Democratic Jewish lobby) and most progressives. The new libertarians diverge from the traditional right-wing on matters of foreign policy: they reject the neo-conservative interventionism of national security hawks and the political-industrial complexes that result and arise from maintaining a perpetual warfare state.

Civil libertarianism emphasizes the protection and increase of personal liberties, a.k.a. civil liberties -- such as free speech (e.g. First Amendment of the US Constitution) and general freedom from government intervention in matters of conscience, expression and association. More recently, civil libertarians have expressed grave concerns over the potential and actual violations of individual liberties by the government, in the name of domestic and national security (see indefinite detention and the NDAAmass surveillance, the surveillance state and PRISM). Also, recently, there has been an increasing concern for the protection of individual digital rights & privacy (see the protests against SOPA and PIPA).

Right-wing libertarians are finding common cause with the libertarian socialists (for e.g. as found in the Occupy movement) in their equal disdain for crony capitalism and with civil libertarians in their suspicion and distrust of an oppressive police & surveillance state.

Libertarians in the US, esp. right-wing libertarians, oftentimes find support for their viewpoints in the American Constitution -- and esp. in the idea of Constitutionally-limited government. This has led to a strong confluence of thought and activism between libertarians and the Patriot movement, esp. among right-leaning libertarians. The Tea Party is essentially the love-child of these two strains of thought in recent American civil and political life.

The idea of liberty rises steadily and naturally in many hearts and minds throughout the world. Robert G. Ingersoll, extols it best:
What light is to the eyes
what air is to the lungs
what love is to the heart,
liberty is to the soul of man.

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