Are Libertarians Cheerier?

Just an observation. Going through my blog roll, I noticed that the libertarian blogs have a rather cheerier general tone than both the left and right blogs. I find this interesting, because surely things are going not-so-well for us in political terms. The left seems extremely dyspeptic and chicken-littely these days. The right seems gloating, dumb, and ham-fisted. Why so chipper, friends? Well, we’re perennial losers, so it doesn’t get us down. And it probably helps a lot if you can enjoy, guilt-free, the full range of pleasures offered by an advanced consumer culture. Despite all the big-government badness that daily assails us, I am nonetheless daily delighted by the cultural plenitude I enjoy. The happiness research seems to show that one thing that can make you more happier on a daily basis is a spirit of gratitude. Do you suppose libertarians are more grateful for capitalism? Yeah computer! Yeah The Arcade Fire. Yeah The Kleptones! Yeah new USB drive. Yeah books from Amazon that just came in the mail! Yeah Guacamole Doritos! Yeah Filene’s Basement where I just bought very nice gloves for thirty minutes wages! Yeah free Moveable Type! Yeah cheap Dreamhost! Yeah all the folks rich and not so rich who pay for the Cato Institute! Yeah Yeah Yeah!

Author: Will Wilkinson

Vice President for Research at the Niskanen Center