Running Scared

You know, I come across a lot of articles from multiple (blog, newspapers, magazines) publications on the internet. In my opinion, out of all them Salon without doubt provides readers with just about the most sophomoric vapid gibberish.

I've come across some really bad and poorly thought out articles but Tom Watson at Salon at the moment has taken the lead alongside an associate professor from Huffington (I forget his name but his article from a few years back continues to haunt me to this day).

It's almost as if these people don't even bother or are incapable of abstract thought particularly when it comes to libertarianism.

Watson isn't alone in the utter indifference displayed. Bill Maher is the king of vacuous interpretations when it comes to libertarianism.

I like to believe this is because the long-term trends are favorable to libertarian philosophy. More and more people are beginning to come around to it. They're reading, listening and researching. Guys like Watson actually help because if someone reading is like me, I go out and research and learn. That's how I ended up at Reason and Le Quebecois Libre. There, I get a sense of rational thinking I sorely demand. I've grown suspicious of the progressive movement and its ideas. I don't believe it works as well as they claim. Alas, that's what freedom is. I get to make that educated decision for myself.

In the hall of ideas, let each argue their points and let the people decide. At the moment, it's not a fair fight as most of the laws, regulations and general mindset leans progressive. What this means, they get a lot of legislative pull. Progressive ideas, in my view, wouldn't succeed without coercive policy. Which is why you see a lot of prgos say stuff like "yeah, but people can't be trusted to make their own choices."

It's not really hard to make a 'slippery slope' claim based on that.

Anyway, lazily, I'll let the comments thread speak for itself. He takes a deserved pasting for his authoritarianism. There really isn't much I can do with this. Either he's a lying piece of shit or completely derelict with the facts of history.

For example, Von Mises "infatuated" with Mussolini? Wow. It was the left and liberals who were (and remain so) infatuated with strongmen and dictators.

No, libertarians - for the 1001th time - don't implicitly condone corporatism through their positions. They are consistently clear they oppose cronyism that corrodes the capitalist system. Cronyism exists because corporate AND political interests collide. From this point forward, they can explain, quite vociferously and passionately if not elegantly, real, workable, sensible solutions to this problem. Solutions that the left (and even right on some cases) oppose. Stuff like, rent control, licensing, minimum wage etc. and other mechanisms that actually benefit major corporations and hurt small business. Small-business's interests are not necessarily naturally aligned with corporations.

Apparently, it's the fault of libertarians there's NSA and that the Obamacare roll-out was an embarrassing disaster.

Do the following comments sound "extreme" to you?

"Anyone who puts their hatred for others ahead of their love for liberty ultimately betrays liberty."

"Too bad Tom Watson is not a true liberal, just mouthing off authoritarian nonsense. The idea of liberty for all came from John Locke, considered as the first liberal (classical liberal). No, today's modern liberal has more in common with Mussolini, who argued for complete totalitarian control of the economy. The same Mussolini who was an avowed Marxist during his early years and who considered fascism  on the "Left"  in his "Doctrine of Fascism" (Jane Soames' 1933 authorized translation of Mussolini's "The Political and Social Doctrine of Fascism," has him writing: "a century of authority, a century of the Left, a century of Fascism.” ). The modern so-called liberal is the true authoritarian versus the classical liberal of Locke and Thomas Jefferson."

Although, once Fascism attained power, one can argue, it sought to be neither "right or left." It just wanted to be its own ideological ideal. But it is true Mussolini's background was heavily influenced by socialism (his father was an ardent socialist). Which is why I find it bizarre, given Obama's obvious left-wing associations, people would claim he's not influenced by his own father's communist beliefs and socialist organizations he was a member of.

Here's the weird thing. Voluntary socialism is basically the libertarian position. Libertarians do NOT reject the strength of the community as a key to fostering strong individuals. They simply reject when that belief becomes a coercive action enforced by the state. Then it graduates into violating individual rights. No one. Absolutely NO ONE has the right to tell another person, for example, pro-rights is morally right and pro-life is wrong therefore the government should pick a side in favor of the former. 

This is unjust action.  

"The liberty movement is about liberty; it is not about authoritarianism; if you conflate the two, you simply need to get out more; there's no polite way to phrase it. An issues coalition does not require all parties to like each other on all issues; it simply requires agreement on the main issue itself: an end to the surveillance state. Progressives have their own reasons for making this call. For libertarians, it is an integral part of the demand for freedom; when there are so many laws that it is estimated that the average American commits three felonies a day, we cannot allow government to surveil us in such intimate detail. More fundamentally, if it would be wrong for a random Peeping Tom to install monitors in someone else's home, it is wrong for government to do so. No idea is more integrally libertarian.

I'll ally with anyone on a shared principle, I'll bend my principles for nobody. If you and I disagree on some other issues, that's life. On this issue, I know where I stand. If you must seek out some other corner to spare yourself the sight of libertarians, that would be your issue, not mine."

1 comment:

  1. The interesting thing I run into is twofold: 1. the media tries to define ideologies and 2. the public tends to believe the media depiction until they come face to face with reality.

    The more the push is to isolate libertarianism, the more attractive it becomes. A bit like telling your daughter that the guy she is dating is a bozo.

    If I may... the "liberals" I knew in my twenties would be classified as libertarians today. They distrusted Big Government, wanted complete personal freedom, and assumed they were being spied upon.


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