To Will Wilkinson: The problem is there aren’t many liberals to begin with. By “liberal”, I mean the card-carrying ACLU types, not your average Democratic voter. Hell, if anything, since you’re a state minimalist & not an anarchist, you’re more of a liberal than most of the people that the Right & the MSM assume are liberals. If someone has political power, chances are they have no coherent philosophy beyond self-aggrandizement at the expense of others. IMO you’re not looking far enough Left, but whatever, do you.
To Goldberg: your words mean zilch when the actions are so blatantly opposite. Sure there were a few conservatives that broke with mainstream orthodoxy, but the common thread is having ZERO influence on those points. When the occasional column is up on you guys’ website about decriminalizing marijuana that gets conveniently ignored, meanwhile the war mongering & “traditional values” crap gets eaten up like it’s the tastiest fried chicken known to man. The reason no one discussing modern conservatism makes cavaets about difference between philosophy & practice is because there is no philosophy left to speak of. That the closest many outsiders get to discerning one consists of a mash of garden variety hypocrisy, religious zealotry, & a hard-on for authority at all costs should say a lot to you, none of it good.
Concerning the topic itself, of liberal-libertarian fusion: As someone who disagrees with the view that hitting statist rock bottom is a plus for libertarianism in the long run, I don’t see a problem in the short term with the occasional team-up on terms of agreement, as long as we keep our eye on the ball. However, that’s not fusionism, it’s ideological interest-group politics.
This is all academic though, really. Very few people think of politics through any sort of coherent philosophy, the tendency to portray them as if everyone does is because if it’s admitted that most are simply in it for immediate personal gain regardless of who they have to step on then the talking heads out there are without a job.
Edit: one more thing… Such an alliance is seen as feasible because it can be said that libertarians (radical libertarians, not the pot-smoking-republican types) and liberals agree on the ends but not the means. Remembering that people capable of obtaining political power admit by their actions that they disagree on means AND ends pretty much make this moot in practice though. IMO, even if you aren’t an anarchist, you’re still better off undermining the government than you are going by-the-book to shift it.