The Spectacle Blog

Barney Frank’s Selective Libertarianism

By on 7.30.10 | 1:24PM

Congressman Barney Frank's (D-MA) bill legalizing online gambling has advanced. Jacob Sullum has more over at Reason. Personally, I see this as the first piece of legislation in this Congress that advances rather than curtails personal freedom. But I'm more interested in Frank's reasoning here.

"Some adults will spend their money foolishly," Frank said, "but it is not the purpose of the federal government to prevent them legally from doing it." But this is the same Barney Frank whose Wall Street financial reform bill that, among many other things, tells people what kind of credit they can and cannot have. Like his anti-gambling colleagues, Frank is all for individual liberty until those liberties might be exercised in activities he deems unwise.

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