The number of people in the United States who identify themselves as "libertarian" is growing. This makes sense because Libertarianism can appeal to liberals and conservatives alike once they are able to wrest themselves away from dependence upon the nanny state.
At the same time, membership in the national Libertarian Party is declining slightly. This also makes sense, but could prove disastrous for the country as a whole. Libertarians, by their very nature, eschew clubs, parties, and general affiliation with groups. That's why we're libertarians -- we realize that the larger the group the less freedom there is within the group. As a person who believes in the individual first, handing over my individualness (not individuality) is antithetical to my core values.
The problem this causes on the national political landscape is becoming more and more evident as we suffer through this prolonged economic downturn. Without a strong Libertarian Party to help guide the country away from the foolishness and depravity of the two party political system, America will continue to barely tread water. The Tea Party is coming close to helping on the financial front, but the freedoms America once promised its citizens can only be restored by a strong belief in the individual at the Federal level. However, Libertarians must be aware that extremism will only further push our cause to the fringes of the national political discussion. We must ensure our platforms remain based in reality.
If you are interested in finding out more about the Libertarian Party, what it stands for and what it is trying to accomplish, go to LP.org.
A third party will help rise us up from the political quagmire we find ourselves in. But, if that party is not strong, financially and socially, all it will do is split the vote of the people who most closely associate with its core beliefs.
Be smart Libertarians, and help restore freedom in America, for every American.