Libertarian Party Platform
Based on the July 2002 platform
I. Individual Rights and Civil Order
No individual, group, or government may initiate force against any other individual, group, or government.
1. Freedom and Responsibility
Individuals should be free to make choices for themselves and to accept responsibility for the
consequences of the choices they make.
The appropriate way to suppress crime is through consistent and impartial enforcement of laws that
protect individual rights.
3. Victimless Crimes
Only actions that infringe on the rights of others can properly be termed crimes.
4. The War on Drugs
The War on Drugs is a grave threat to individual liberty, to domestic order, and to peace in the world.
5. Safeguards for the Criminally Accused
Until such time as persons are proved guilty of crimes, they should be accorded full respect for their
6. Justice for the Individual
We support restitution for the victim to the fullest degree possible at the expense of the criminal or
wrongdoer. We oppose the prosecution of individuals for exercising their rights of self-defense.
We favor all-volunteer juries and urge the assertion of the common-law right of juries to judge not only
the facts but also the justice of the law.
8. Individual Sovereignty
We favor an immediate end to the doctrine of "Sovereign Immunity" which ignores the primacy of the
individual, and holds that the State may not be held accountable for its actions.
9. Government and Mental Health
We oppose the involuntary treatment for mental health by health officials or law enforcement.
10. Freedom of Communication
We defend the rights of individuals to unrestricted freedom of speech, freedom of the press, and the
right of individuals to dissent from government.
11. Freedom of Religion
We defend the rights of individuals to engage in or abstain from any religious
activities that do not violate the rights of others.
12. The Right to Property
All rights are inextricably linked with property rights. Property rights are entitled to the same
protection as all other human rights.
13. Protection of Privacy
The individual's rights to privacy, property, and to speak or not to speak should not be infringed by the
14. Government Secrecy
We condemn the government's use of secret classifications to keep from the public information that it
15. Internal Security and Civil Liberties
The defense of the country requires that we counter threats to domestic security; however, we call for
repeal of legislation that violates individual rights under the color of national security.
16. The Right to Keep and Bear Arms
We affirm the right to keep and bear arms and oppose all laws at any level of government restricting,
regulating, or requiring the ownership, manufacture, transfer, or sale of firearms or ammunition.
17. Conscription and the Military
We oppose any form of compulsory national service.
We hold that human rights should not be denied or abridged
on the basis of nationality and welcome all refugees
to our country.
19. Freedom of Association and Government Discrimination
Individual rights should not be denied or enhanced at the expense of other people's rights by
20. Women's Rights and Abortion
Individual rights should not be denied or abridged on the basis of sex. Recognizing that abortion is a
very sensitive issue and that people, including libertarians, can hold good-faith views on both sides,
we believe the government should be kept out of the question.
21. Families and Children
We believe that families are private institutions, which should be free from government intrusion, and
that parents have the right to raise their children according to their own standards and beliefs.
22. Sexual Rights
We believe that adults have the right to private choice in consensual sexual
23. American Indian Rights
American Indians should be free to determine their own system of governance and should have their
property rights restored.
II. Trade and the Economy
The only proper role of existing governments in the economic realm is to protect property rights,
adjudicate disputes, and provide a legal framework in which voluntary trade is protected.
1. The Economy
Government intervention in the economy imperils both the personal freedom and the material
prosperity of every American.
All persons are entitled to keep the fruits of their labor. We oppose all government activity that
consists of the forcible collection of money or goods from individuals in violation of their individual
3. Inflation and Depression
Government control over money and banking is the primary cause of inflation and depression.
4. Finance and Capital Investment
Regulation of financial and capital markets represses capital ventures.
5. Government Debt
We support a constitutional amendment requiring government budgets be balanced by cutting
expenditures and not by raising taxes.
Government is the source of monopoly, through its grants of legal privilege to special interests in the
economy. We advocate a strict separation of business and State.
The unrestricted competition of the free market is the best way to foster prosperity. We oppose all
8. Trade Barriers
Tariffs and quotas give special treatment to favored special interests and diminish the welfare of
consumers and other individuals.
9. Public Utilities
We advocate the termination of government-created franchise privileges. The right to offer services
on the market should not be curtailed by law.
10. Unions and Collective Bargaining
We support the right of free persons to associate or not associate in labor unions. An employer
should have the right to recognize or refuse to recognize a union.
III. Domestic Ills
Current problems in such areas as energy, pollution, health care delivery, decaying cities, and poverty are
not solved, but are primarily caused, by government.
We oppose all government control of energy pricing, allocation, and production.
Pollution of other people's property is a violation of individual rights. Strict liability, not government
agencies and arbitrary government standards, should regulate pollution.
3. Consumer Protection
We support strong and effective laws against fraud and misrepresentation.
We advocate the complete separation of education and State.
The American people are not a collective national resource. We oppose all coercive measures for
We support transit competition and deregulation.
7. Poverty and Unemployment
We support the repeal of all laws that impede the ability of any person to find employment. The
proper source of aid to the poor is voluntary efforts of private groups and individuals.
8. Health Care
We favor restoring and reviving a free market health care system. We advocate a complete
separation of medicine and State.
9. Resource Use
Resource management is properly the responsibility and right of the legitimate owners of land, water,
and other natural resources.
Farmers and consumers alike should be free from the meddling and counterproductive measures of
the federal government -- free to grow, sell, and buy what they want.
11. Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA)
We call for the repeal of OSHA, which denies the right to liberty and property to both employer and
employee and interferes in private contractual relations.
12. Social Security
Replace the fraudulent, bankrupt Social Security system with a private, voluntary system.
13. Postal Service
We propose allowing free competition in all aspects of postal service.
14. Civil Service
The Civil Service system entrenches a permanent and growing bureaucracy and is inherently a
system of concealed patronage.
15. Election Laws
We call for an end to government control of political parties, consistent with First Amendment rights to
freedom of association and freedom of expression, and propose electoral systems that are more
IV. Foreign Affairs
The United States government should return to the historic libertarian tradition of avoiding entangling
alliances, abstaining totally from foreign quarrels and imperialist adventures, and recognizing the right to
unrestricted trade and travel.
A. Diplomatic Policy
The important principle in foreign policy should be the elimination of intervention by the United States
government in the affairs of other nations.
2. International Travel and Foreign Investments
We call upon the United States government to adhere rigidly to the principle that all U.S. citizens
travel, live, and own property abroad at their own risk.
3. Human Rights
We recognize the right of all people to resist tyranny and defend themselves and their rights against
governments or political and revolutionary groups.
4. World Government
We oppose U.S. government participation in any world or international government. We oppose any
treaty under which individual rights would be violated.
We recognize the right to political secession by political entities, private groups, or individuals.
1. Military Policy
Any U.S. military policy should have the objective of providing security for the lives, liberty and
property of the American people in the U.S. as inexpensively as possible and without undermining the
liberties it is designed to protect.
2. Presidential War Powers
We favor limiting the presidential role as Commander-in-Chief to its original meaning, namely that of
the head of the armed forces in wartime.
C. Economic Policy
1. Foreign Aid
We support the elimination of tax-supported military, economic, technical, and scientific aid to foreign
governments or other organizations.
2. International Money
We favor withdrawal of the United States from all international money and credit schemes, the World
Bank, and the International Monetary Fund.
3. Unowned Resources
Individuals have the right to homestead unowned resources, both within the jurisdictions of national
governments and within unclaimed territory.
D. International Relations
We favor immediate self-determination for all people living in colonial dependencies and the
termination of subsidization of them at taxpayers' expense.
2. Foreign Intervention
We would end the current U.S. government policy of foreign intervention, including military and
economic aid, guarantees, and diplomatic meddling. We make no exceptions.
3. Space Exploration
We oppose all government restrictions upon voluntary, peaceful use of outer space.
Our silence about any other particular government law, regulation, ordinance, directive, edict, control,
regulatory agency, activity, or machination should not be construed to imply approval.