Poll shows America is becoming more libertarian

A new CNN poll is making libertarian waves, as election expert and political analyst Nate Silver reports on his FiveThirtyEight Blog in the New York Times: Americans are becoming more libertarian in their basic attitudes.  The story has also been picked up by The Daily Caller and The Atlantic Wire.

The CNN poll tracks responses to the twin questions of (1) whether government should not favor any particular set of values, and (2) whether government is trying to do too many things that should be left to individuals and businesses.  Affirmative answers to both questions have now reached new peaks (50% and 63%, respectively) for the time period of 1993-2011 during which CNN has polled them.  Here’s the graph:

In essence this is a highly abbreviated version of the Nolan chart which measures political opinions along the two dimensions of personal freedom and economic freedom.  Although the CNN questions are somewhat simplistic and open to interpretation, the important point is that the trend is clearly moving in the right direction.  And that direction is our direction — libertarianism.