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30 March 2014 @ 08:28 am
I fear that I will always wish I could be a libertarian. I know that we cannot escape the animalistic activity known as politics, much as I would wish to, and the attempts to avoid it can make things worse. Still, libertarianism has much to offer. Many libertarians recognize that the corporation is not merely not a person but a gross intervention in the free market by the state. Radley Balko's libertarian distrust of the cops makes him an invaluable resource. And Justin Raimondo, though he describes himself as "Pat Buchanan's #1 gay supporter" (he admits there isn't much competition), has a long and honorable history of opposing Woodrow Wilson's wet dream of imposing democracy on the entire world and all its interventionist offspring. He has some thoughts on the question, such as
We must never forget that the political character of a state, whether it is democratic, theocratic, fascist, or communist, says nothing about the foreign policy it will pursue. A democracy can be and often is relentlessly aggressive, while a fascist dictatorship could just as readily be pacific and isolationist. Indeed, a democratic nation with a Messiah complex is far more dangerous to the world and to its own people than a relatively authoritarian state that just wants to reign over its little corner of the globe. A danger to the world because the special arrogance that infuses would-be messiahs allows them to commit the greatest crimes for the noblest of reasons. A danger to their own people because the very act of aggression and empire-building destroys the liberal character of democratic states, eating away their substance from within.

Thanx to RAW Illumination.
Maia Cmaiac on March 30th, 2014 01:24 pm (UTC)
My opinion of libertarianism is that in practice it would never live up to its ideals because so many adherents interpret its underlying principle as "Got mine, fuck you."

I agree with what Justin Raimundo wrote about exporting democracy. Lloyd Biggle summarized it in one of my favorite books, The Still Small Sound of Trumpets: "Democracy imposed from without is the greatest form of tyranny."
Risky Robbyrobby on March 30th, 2014 02:13 pm (UTC)
You're too easy and forgiving on the political system. Congress was never meant to be a lifelong career of millionaires and soon-to-be millionaires. The police state is here, but nobody except the libertarians seems to be upset. People, pretend that the evil George Bush is still in office, and wake up.
et in Arcadia egobooapostle_of_eris on March 30th, 2014 02:42 pm (UTC)
And, you know, there is no such thing as society. (Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher)
El Coyote Gordo: poodlesupergee on March 30th, 2014 02:56 pm (UTC)
Society is a shared fantasy. Which is not the same thing.
don_fitch on March 30th, 2014 07:19 pm (UTC)
Yup, I, also, often wish I could be a libertarian -- The Theory is so utterly neat and comprehensive that it feeds my soul. Unfortunately, it doesn't correspond in the least to what I perceive as The Real World.

I've recently been getting surveys from both major political parties (better you shouldn't ask, maybe, but I had a perfectly good reason to register to vote in the Republican Primaries -- to help fuck them up, actually --) that included something like "Do you favor allowing people to devote some of their Social Security taxes to personal investment accounts?" My Inner demi-Libertarian says: ":Yes, up to half -- and I'm pretty sure about 80% of the people who do this will zero-out on the stock market and end up retiring on about half as much as the rest of us. If that isn't enough to provide them with decent housing, food, & health care... tough shit." The Bleeding-Heart Liberal (AKA "Decent Human Being") within me, however, is going to argue that "society" really ought to help them (&/or the people responsible for them... most likely innocent offspring) out with some of the money we've acquired by being more Responsible. *sigh*

MIKE SHERWOODdmsherwood53 on March 31st, 2014 12:54 pm (UTC)
Yeah the inside/outside distction is important & usualy igmored ( see Douglas Hofstadter's ANT HILLARY the socialist ant colony)
Over here in the UK the Conseratives are going to loet people cash in £10,000 of their Pention and spend it on a Lambogeiny)
Libertarianism isn't a limiting case :Yesterday on BBC's HARDTALK we had a Fully fledged Ananacist Quote Every Man Woman & Child shoud pack a piece Quote The so-called Criminal Class provides gpoods & services that people want like Whores and drugs