Patriotism is the willingness to kill and be killed for trivial reasons.

— Bertrand Russell, 1872-1970


Garry Reed's picture

Stephen Colbert: Libertarian or conservative-baiter?

Stephen Colbert, the current comedic occupant of "The Colbert Report," has officially been anointed by CBS as the Chosen One to sit upon the "Late Night" throne once Sir David Letterman relinquishes the reins of his reign next year.

While somehave described the move as "replacing one liberal with another" libertarians are renewing their quest for an answer to the question, "Is Stephen Colbert a libertarian?" To find out, one could simply ask Colbert himself:

"We libertarians are finally having our moment in the sun. This is the year that many believe libertarians will quote 'hold some serious sway in American politics'\u2026 We will use that power to eliminate maximum occupancy rules in elevators and suggested age ranges on board games."

However, since Colbert is a practitioner of the satirical arts and might be "just kidding" a few more opinions might be helpful.

Yahoo Answers is supposed to have the answers. Responses to "Is Stephen Colbert a Libertarian?" range from "No" to "no hes prob liberal" to "He is a candy man. Dance monkey, dance for your pocket change" to "Glen Beck is not a Libertarian" (?)

So why not ask a liberal? A self-identified anti-conservative website posted a rant by "rackjite" that began "I have no love AT ALL for Looneytarians. They are so far to the Right they cross the right field foul line, flow past the stands and are standing in the rain out in the ballpark parking lot with their thumbs up their asses."

To prove how looney Looneytarians are rackjite posted a video of Colbert interviewing Reason's Nick Gillespie a year ago. Colbert played his doofus conservative character against Gillespie's pot legalization position, thereby actually supporting the libertarian position while proving that rackjite is ignorant about libertarianism and about the nature of satire.

But then libertarians will point out that this happened only because in this particular case the libertarian position happens to coincide with the liberal position, which should prove to people like rackjite that libertarians are not "so far to the Right."

Internet Movie Database (IMDb), the online go-to authority for all things entertainment, assures everyone that "Despite the Right wing-to-Libertarian-leaning views that the 'Stephen Colbert' character often espouses on the show, in his private life, the real Stephen Colbert considers himself a Democrat."

And there's the answer; in front of the camera Colbert is a contrived "character" playing to the masses but behind the scenes he's just another predictable partisan progressive, doing business exactly like the politicians he loves to lampoon.

So move along libertarians. Nothing to see here.

Stephen Colbert, satire, Democrat, liberal, libertarian