Are libertarians “half liberal, half conservative” as some say? No. Both but sides cloak themselves with a tiny percentage of libertarian , and ignore the rest. The commonality between the two is much larger than the differences.
For instance, libertarians are sometimes derided as “Republicans who smoke pot.” Well, when a D or R politician gets hold of marijuana law, their impulse is to tax and regulate it until it stops moving. A libertarian would say “back off already, leave them alone.”
Or take educational freedom. Libertarians say “separate school and state.” D and R politicians argue about exactly how the State should control the process of education. They argue about small details, not the fundamental principle. The coercion and the micromanagement suck all the life out of learning.
Or war – the Republicans openly advocate for war – against Iran, for example – but Obama and Clinton are not actually against war, otherwise our troops would be back home, and we wouldn’t be dropping all those bombs. Libertarians are all “mind your business.” We’d show respect for our soldiers by bringing them home.
The natural impulse of the politician is to coerce, to control, to deflect you from the path which you would choose. The principle of the libertarian is to leave you alone.