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News Link • Philosophy: Libertarianism

Why the Left Fears Libertarianism

• lewrockwell.com

Leftist criticisms of libertarianism have surged lately, a phenomenon warranting explanation. We libertarians could justifiably find it all quite confusing. For decades we have thought our battle a largely losing one, at least in the short term. We are a tiny, relatively powerless minority. The state has raged on, expanding in virtually every direction, for my entire lifetime and that of my parents’. Yet nearly every week our beloved philosophy of non-aggression is subject to some progressive’s relatively widely read hatchet job. On the surface, it appears at least as misdirected as the rightwing hysteria about Marxists during the Cold War. But at least Marxism was the supposed tenet of the Soviet Union, a regime with thousands of nukes ready to launch. Why all this concern about little ol’ us?

We could go through all these critiques line by line and expose the many factual errors and gross misinterpretations, whether disingenuous or unintentional. But it might be more worthwhile to ask, Why all this focus on the supposed demonic threat of libertarianism in the first place?

It was not too long ago that the Slate’s Jacob Weisberg declared the end of libertarianism. Time of death? The financial collapse, which proved our "ideology makes no sense." Not three years later, the same web publication is exposing "the liberty scam": "With libertarianism everywhere, it's hard to remember that as recently as the 1970s, it was nowhere to be found."

 

4 Comments in Response to

Comment by Anonymous
Entered on:

 

The clash of the future is between those who see the State as the enemy and those "who seek salvation through the State." One has no mind and therefore dangerous, the other is in fear of the mindless, and therefore has a prayer. Thus this fear of Libertarianism in extremis exists because for angry radical Libertarians acting wild … actually in a rampage to "kill" the State they pictured as Public Enemy No.1 is like everybody witnessing a blindfolded terrorist holding an AK- 47 and firing at will in every direction – like a bloody headless chicken!.

Comment by Anonymous
Entered on:

 

Libertarians In Extremis Feared By All -- Bakadude

Libertarianism in extremis is this angry revolutionary belief that since 911 the No. 1 Enemy to vanquish is not Al Qaeda but the State. It pictures the State as a big ogre that has been terrorizing the Small Guy. This small guy is actually you and me.

As a Libertarian of Reason, my fundamental belief of liberty and freedom does not go to that farthest end of the line. It is not by accident that it does not. I preferred it that way for the Small Guy because the State is actually you and me – we just created a political entity of ourselves and call it a "State". Thus when the idea is to protect ourselves by vanquishing the State that we already are, but erroneously pictured upside down as the No. 1 enemy to kill, this belief of the third kind becomes a blind-sided contradiction! It is this stone-blind contradiction of Libertarianism in extremis that the Liberal Left and the Conservative and the people in general, fear the most.

Reasonable Libertarianism is a modification of Libertarianism in extremis. In my published treatise on Libertarianism, the following long-established Libertarian principles needed reasonable adjustments in order to fit in today’s real world … there are many more but for reason of limited space I will just cite the top two in my list:

Principle 1: "We believe that people should be free to engage in any occupation or profession without any government-issued license, permit, or other form of official permission. Let consumers, not the government, decide who engages in different lines of work."

This free Libertarian doctrine needs a revision to conform to the realities of the time. In the Old Wild, Wild West, the Consumers, not the Government, decided who engaged in different lines of work, businesses or occupations. A free-for-all business environment was created. Did it work? NOOOh…NOOOh NO! In a free-for-all market competition, free business entrepreneurs used too many guns to run their businesses freely against competitors who didn’t have too many guns to fight back and too many were left dead on too many streets everywhere that only the funeral service industry flourished overnight.

We needed the "force" of the State that is stronger than those who conduct their business operations at the end of the barrel of the gun to maintain a free but fair competition. As a matter of EXTREME necessity, we have to regulate the market … and so we have a government-regulated market up to this day. You want to back to those days, fine – be my guest.

Principle 2: "We believe that people should be free to enter into mutually beneficial transactions with anyone else in the world, without interference by the government. That includes such things as hiring a housekeeper from Mexico and selling food to a Cuban."

If we hire workers from across the Mexican border at our own uncontrolled or unregulated volition, and everybody is free to do it, it will depressed our domestic labor market – bad for our national economy. You have to study Economics to understand why this is bad for the national economy.

If a profit-crazed businessman or corporation sell not only food to Cubans but also sale Uranium to Iran to help Iran’s terrorist president design a nuclear bomb to wipe Israel off the map because [a] there is no government intervention/restriction and any business-minded American is free to do it, [b] it is a "mutually beneficial transaction" between the crazy one and Iranian President Ahmadinejad, I don’t think at all that this Libertarian principle does not need a revision to conform to the realities of the time – it does, and pronto!

These are just but two top examples of many more that Libertarian thinkers need to have a second look. If Libertarianism is to survive the changing time, it has to be reasonable at this modern age of reason rather than remain unreasonable and rigid … and because it is resistant to changes, it would definitely break up in just a matter of time, unless the present time’s demand for compromise is quickly addressed.

Comment by Anonymous
Entered on:

 

As a Libertarian of Reason, my fundamental belief of liberty and freedom does not go to that farthest end of the line. It is not by accident that it does not. I preferred it that way for the Small Guy because the State is actually you and me – we just created a political entity of ourselves and call it a "State". Thus when the idea is to protect ourselves by vanquishing the State that we already are, but erroneously pictured upside down as the No. 1 enemy to kill, this belief of the third kind becomes a blind-sided contradiction! It is this stone-blind contradiction of Libertarianism in extremis that the Liberal Left and the Conservative and the people in general, fear the most.

Reasonable Libertarianism is a modification of Libertarianism in extremis. In my published treatise on Libertarianism, the following long-established Libertarian principles needed reasonable adjustments in order to fit in today’s real world … there are many more but for reason of limited space I will just cite the top two in my list:

Principle 1: "We believe that people should be free to engage in any occupation or profession without any government-issued license, permit, or other form of official permission. Let consumers, not the government, decide who engages in different lines of work."

This free Libertarian doctrine needs a revision to conform to the realities of the time. In the Old Wild, Wild West, the Consumers, not the Government, decided who engaged in different lines of work, businesses or occupations. A free-for-all business environment was created. Did it work? NOOOh…NOOOh NO! In a free-for-all market competition, free business entrepreneurs used too many guns to run their businesses freely against competitors who didn’t have too many guns to fight back and too many were left dead on too many streets everywhere that only the funeral service industry flourished overnight.

We needed the "force" of the State that is stronger than those who conduct their business operations at the end of the barrel of the gun to maintain a free but fair competition. As a matter of EXTREME necessity, we have to regulate the market … and so we have a government-regulated market up to this day. You want to go back to those old days, fine – be my guest.

Principle 2: "We believe that people should be free to enter into mutually beneficial transactions with anyone else in the world, without interference by the government. That includes such things as hiring a housekeeper from Mexico and selling food to a Cuban."

If we hire workers from across the Mexican border at our own uncontrolled or unregulated volition, and everybody is free to do it, it will depressed our domestic labor market – bad for our national economy. You need to study and understand Economics to know why it is bad to our national economy.

If a profit-craze businessman or corporation sell not only food to Cubans but also sale Uranium to Iran to help Iran’s terrorist president design a nuclear bomb to wipe Israel off the map because [a] there is no government intervention and any business-minded American is free to do it, [b] it is a "mutually beneficial transaction" between the crazy one and Iranian President Ahmadinejad, I don’t think at all that this Libertarian principle does not need a revision to conform to the realities of the time – it does, and pronto!

These are just but two top examples of many more that Libertarian thinkers need to have a second look. If Libertarianism is to survive the changing time, it has to be reasonable at this modern age of reason rather than remain unreasonable and rigid … and because it is resistant to changes, it would definitely break in just a matter of time, unless the present time’s demand for compromise is quickly addressed.

.

Comment by Anonymous
Entered on:

Libertarians In Extremis Feared By All -- Bakadude

Libertarianism in extremis is this angry revolutionary belief that since 911 the No. 1 Enemy to vanquish is not Al Qaeda but the State. It pictures the State as a big ogre that has been terrorizing the Small Guy. This small guy is actually you and me.

As a Libertarian of Reason, my fundamental belief of liberty and freedom does not go to that farthest end. It is not by accident. I preferred it that way for the Small Guy because the State is actually you and me – we just created a political entity of ourselves and call it a "State". Thus when the idea is to protect ourselves by vanquishing the State that we already are, but erroneously pictured upside down as the No. 1 enemy to kill, this belief of the third kind becomes a blind-sided contradiction! It is this stone-blind contradiction of Libertarianism in extremis that the Liberal Left and the Conservative and the people fear the most.

Reasonable Libertarianism is a modification of Libertarianism in extremis. In my published treatise on Libertarianism, the following long-established Libertarian principles needed reasonable adjustments in order to fit in today’s real world … there are many more but I will cite only the top two in my list:

Principle 1: "We believe that people should be free to engage in any occupation or profession without any government-issued license, permit, or other form of official permission. Let consumers, not the government, decide who engages in different lines of work."

This free Libertarian doctrine needs a revision to conform to the realities of the time. In the Old Wild, Wild West, the Consumers, not the Government, decided who engaged in different lines of work, businesses or occupations. A free-for-all business environment was created. Did it work? NOOOh…NOOOh NO! In a free-for-all market competition, free business entrepreneurs used too many guns to run their businesses freely against competitors who didn’t have too many guns to fight back and too many were left dead on too many streets everywhere that only the funeral service industry flourished overnight.

We needed the "force" of the State that is stronger than those who conduct their business operations at the end of the barrel of the gun to maintain a free but fair competition. As a matter of EXTREME necessity, we have to regulate the market … and so we have a government-regulated market up to this day. You want to back to those days, fine – be my guest.

Principle 2: "We believe that people should be free to enter into mutually beneficial transactions with anyone else in the world, without interference by the government. That includes such things as hiring a housekeeper from Mexico and selling food to a Cuban."

If we hire workers from across the Mexican border at our own uncontrolled or unregulated volition, and everybody is free to do it, it will depressed our domestic labor market – bad for our national economy.

If a profit-craze businessman or corporation sell not only food to Cubans but also sale Uranium to Iran to help Iran’s terrorist president design a nuclear bomb to wipe Israel off the map because [a] there is no government intervention and any business-minded American is free to do it, [b] it is a "mutually beneficial transaction" between the crazy one and Iranian President Ahmadinejad, I don’t think at all that this Libertarian principle does not need a revision to conform to the realities of the time – it does, and fronto!

These are just but two top examples of many more that Libertarian thinkers need to have a second look. If Libertarianism is to survive the changing time, it has to be reasonable at this modern age of reason rather than remain unreasonable and rigid … and because it is resistant to changes, it would definitely break in just a matter of time, unless the present time’s demand for compromise is quickly addressed.


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