Maybe we should have let Gary Johnson debate. Being on a national stage probably would have ended his candidacy.
Reason.com likes to pretend that including Johnson would bring some much needed gravitas to the proceedings and that he would be the only adult in the room.
But all you have to do is watch an interview with Johnson and it is immediately apparent there is no truth to that.
Johnson is polling well because on the one hand, his libertarian, no government platitudes register with some Republicans that can’t stomach Trump. On the other hand his, “everything’s groovy, I wear Nikes, let’s legalize drugs” suckers in some younger voters who don’t follow politics that closely.
Johnson falls flat on his face in such interviews because he does not care about governance, the riotously named “Reason” magazine be damned, he just want to shut it all down. Over at Salon, Heather Digby Parton nails all the reasons Johnson is not ready for prime time.
Libertarians pretend to be political philosophers (hence the silly name of their silly magazine) but the fact of the matter is that the philosophy was tried and it failed.
After the Revolution, the Founding Fathers tried a “government is best that governs least” approach. The Articles of Confederation failed miserably, and within years they were back putting together a strong (yet wisely constrained and balanced) central government.
This is why there is no real Libertarian Party, it was tried and it failed 250 years ago.
And Gary Johnson is a perfect representative that failure today.