Regardless of where we think the current American Libertarian movement or, rather the Small Government movement, is coming from, regardless of its validity, there is going to be a choice to make: a culture of punishing, the Prison State, or liberty.
A belief in punishing, a belief in deterrents – that is going to require large budgets for Police Departments and prisons. Big budgets are the definition of Big Government. But consider:
What is a deterrent? Where is the deterrent of a prison sentence if there are no Police to catch and prosecute the criminals? So, Big Punishment requires Big Government (of course any Conservative will tell you he’s for one and against the other).
So here’s your choice, America, and incidentally, every other nation:
You want liberty, freedom from Big Government? Then you need to find another way, a far more humanist way to lessen the violence in your society. Small Government won’t be able to afford the endless cycles of violence and crime that the Punishment Culture creates.