Libertarianism has been around at least since the US Constitution was being written by its Founding Fathers. But I believe the rise of the modern Libertarian Movement came about. As a Reactionary Movement to the FDR New Deal in the 1930s and the LBJ Great Society in the 1960s. And perhaps even as far back as the Teddy Rossevelt Progressive Movement of the early 1900s and 1920s. That they saw the Federal Government as overstepping its Constitutional Authority under the 11th Amendment. And this led to more Classical Conservatives being elected to Congress in the 1940s and early 50s. And one reason how Dwight Eisenhower was elected President in 1952 and reelected in 1956. And then elected again in the late 60s, late 70s, 80s and 90s. And why the Libertarian Party was formed in the early 1970s. Because libertarians and Classical Conservatives saw the rise of Democratic Socialism. In America as a threat to the US Constitution and Individual Freedom. That they saw government and the Federal Government wanting to take Individual Liberty away from the people. To make their own decisions in life and they wanted to make those decisions for themselves. Like in education, Healthcare, retirement and other areas. And they did not want to see an establishment of a Welfare State in America like with the New Deal and Great Society.
Libertarians and Classical Conservatives wanted to make these decisions for themselves. This is what brought Barry Goldwater, Ron Reagan, Gerry Ford, Ron Paul and other Classical Conservatives and libertarians. Into power in American Politics, because all of these people saw Democratic Socialism as the number one or two threat to America. Our Constitution and Individual Liberty and they felt the need to fight back again Socialism in America and the New Deal and Great Society. This is what the modern Libertarian Movement is fighting against today with Ron Paul, Gary Johnson and others. And to a certain extent are having some success and are growing as a movement. Despite the Libertarian Party which hasn't done much to advance libertarianism in America. And a reason why so many young people are now Self Identified as libertarian. And why they are starting to have some success on issues as well. Like Decriminalizing Marijuana, Gay Marriage, lower Tax Rates, Tax Reform, anti Federal Reserve. More Individual Liberty in retirement, keeping America out of Civil Wars and there are more issues.
Libertarians have Franklin Rossevelt and Lyndon Johnson and other believers in Democratic Socialism to thank for their movement today. Without them, we may not have anything resembling a Welfare Sate in America and this country still looks like the 1920s. When it comes to Economic Policy, Foreign Policy and other policy's.