Hey Libertarians! Liberals Are Just Not That Into You!

In The New Republic, Ed Kilgore declares farewell and good riddance to the short-lived liberal-libertarian romance:

The progressive-libertarian alliance may have provided tactical benefits in 2006, augmenting the Democratic "wave" election of that year. But 2008 showed that libertarian support is hardly crucial: Obama still won "libertarian" states such as Colorado and New Hampshire handily, even without their backing, and he generally performed better in the "libertarian West" than any Democratic nominee since LBJ. [...]

[W]ith the arrival of the Tea Party movement, libertarians have acquired a kind of mass political cachet that they've never before enjoyed. As Nate Silver estimated last year, the early tea parties were "two parts Ron Paul/libertarian conservative--with its strength out West and in New Hampshire--and one part Sarah Palin/red-meat conservative--with its strength in rural areas, particularly in the South." This phenomenon has pulled libertarianism rightward: Despite some expressed concerns about the crudeness and cultural conservatism of many Tea Party activists, it has become clear that most self-conscious libertarians are willing to participate in, and cheerlead for, the Tea Party movement as though their political futures depend on it.

That, in turn, has torn open cultural rifts between libertarians and liberals. Progressives who previously fawned over the libertarians' Jeffersonian modesty are now exposed to the unattractive aspect of libertarianism that is familiar to readers of Ayn Rand: a Nietzschean disdain for the poor and minorities that tends to dovetail with the atavistic and semi-racist habits of reactionary cultural traditionalists. After all, it is only a few steps from the Tea Party movement's founding "rant"—in which self-described Randian business commentator Rick Santelli blasted "losers" who couldn't pay their mortgages—to populist backlash against all transfer payments of any type, complaints about people "voting for a living" instead of "working for a living," and paranoid conspiracy theories about groups like ACORN.

Certainly, few self-conscious libertarians have much tolerance for racism, but they are encouraging a point of view about "welfare" that has long been catnip to racists. And that's a problem for liberals. How can an alliance last in a climate where a progressive think tanker has to look down the rostrum at that nice Cato Institute colleague and wonder if he or she privately thinks the poor are "looter scum"; or if he's willing to get behind the Sarah Palin presidential candidacy that's so wildly popular in Tea Party circles? [...]

[E]ven liberals who are frustrated with the president have trouble mustering any sympathy for the Obama-bashing of contemporary libertarians—a sign that the earlier alliance really was an ephemeral product of the Bush administration's many sins.

Kilgore also points out that Citizens United v. FEC exposed some other fundamental faultlines.

I think you can boil this fooferaw down to two essential points: 1) Economics matter. 2) Yes, a political tendency that is critical of government power is likely to criticize the government in power.

Speaking only for myself, I don't see libertarianism moving rightward, I see rightward moving libertarian. Which is to be expected, what with the whole not-having-power thing (as Kilgore points out, the Democrats' wilderness years included such incongruities as Markos Moulitsas penning "libertarian Democrat" manifestos). Many libertarians already treat the Tea Party movement (and more than that, Sarah Palin) with 10-foot tongs, and it won't take many more Joe Farah/Tom Tancredo Tea Party-branded speeches to expose many of the conservative/libertarian cracks that were so evident during the Bushitler years. As for welfare and all that, again this is just me talking, but I have never for one second in my life used or thought the phrase "welfare queen" to mean anything besides one of those Evil Corporations my liberal pals are so afraid of. I don't give one shit about ACORN, wouldn't vote for Sarah Palin at gunpoint, and don't look down the rostrum at that nice Center for American Progress colleague fretting about their private thoughts.

What I do care about, regardless of who's president, is human freedom and prosperity. And I strongly and consistently suspect that when the government accumulates more power, I and everyone else (except those wielding it) have less of which I seek. Republicans diss libertarians when they're in power, and Democrats diss libertarians when they're in power. Their changing attitudes toward our little (albeit growing) tribe is mildly interesting, but it's about as newsworthy (and painful) as a dog biting a chew toy.

Link via Newsalert. I wrote about the "Liberaltarian Jackalope" last April.

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  • Old Mexican||

    Hey Libertarians! Liberals Are Just Not That Into You!


    .

    You think??

  • John Tagliaferro||

    Oh God Damn It! I wanted them to be into us [yawn]

  • ||

    Ahem

    2005 bitches

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    2005 bitches

    What martyred dogs get in doggie heaven.

  • ||

    that's funny!

  • ||

    Libertarians are the only real liberals. Current republicans and democrats only act half liberal on different issues. I'm taking that word back and the socialists and corporatists can suck it.

    I didn't even vote in the last election after Ron Paul lost. I thought Obama the lesser of two evils at the time because of the war (haha!) but his flowery talk with no facts really annoyed me so I would have just written in Cthulhu in protest.

  • ||

    Whatever the value of their ideas, when it comes to real-world politics, libertarians are simpletons...ninnies...dupes.

    Obama the Cad pumping-and-dumping libertarians is Exhibit A.

  • zoltan||

    That would be Exhibit E. Please see Exhibit A (Reagan), Exhibit B (Bush 1), Exhibit C (Clinton) and Exhibit D (Bush 2).

  • kayana||

    I agree with you guys !!

  • Old Mexican||

    Obama still won "libertarian" states such as Colorado and New Hampshire handily[...]

    Colorado is libertarian?

  • prolefeed||

    Colorado, like most of the Mountain West, has a sizeable albeit still small minority of libertarian-leaning residents.

  • John Tagliaferro||

    It makes the New Republic story work.

  • ||

    The Libertarian Party USA was founded in Colorado. It's no more of a "pure" libertarian state than is NH, but there is an undercurrent of it.

  • ||

    Colorado is "Practical Libertarian".

  • ||

    Colorado used to be more libertarian. Now not so much, unless your definition of 'libertarian' is supporting legalization of pot.

    But smaller government? Not so much any more. Our state government is working to undermine TABOR. And our two senators voted for all the TARP, Bailouts, 'Stimulus' etc legislation they could.

  • zoltan||

    Thank you California for flooding great states like Colorado and Texas with your dregs!

  • PIRS||

    "Obama still won "libertarian" states such as Colorado and New Hampshire handily, even without their backing, and he generally performed better in the "libertarian West" than any Democratic nominee since LBJ"

    And the wars had nothing at all to do with that. Nor did the fact that the GOP nominated one of the biggest statists they have ever had as a presidential nominee.

  • ||

    Nor did the fact that the GOP nominated one of the biggest statists they have ever had as a presidential nominee.

    Actually, McCain did quite well with the libertarian vote, winning 71%, compared to GWB's 59% in 2004. That's because he's not "one of the biggest statists they have ever had."

    In some ways he's pretty statist, in some ways (farm bill, free trade, immigration) he's more libertarian than almost any candidate nominated by the Republicans.

  • PIRS||

    That 71% apparently did not look into all of the bills that have a title like McCain-Somebody or Somebody- McCain.

  • ||

    That 71% apparently did not look into all of the bills that have a title like McCain-Somebody or Somebody- McCain.

    I'd say more that you're not looking beyond a few high-profile (but annoying) bills to the entire voting record.

    As I said, McCain is extremely good on free trade, both in opposing trade barriers and in opposing subsidies.

    I agree that, e.g., McCain-Feingold is a horrid piece of legislation, but it's far from the only thing out there.

  • strat||

    I'm sorry, but the duopoly ideas of "free trade" still read like statist privilege issuance, when I read the treaties.

  • Leif||

    Right on, sister (brother?) strat! All or nothing!

  • zoltan||

    Free trade!??!!?

    HE SUSPENDED HIS PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN SO THE GOVERNMENT COULD PILFER TAXPAYER MONIES AND HAND IT OUT TO AILING CAR COMPANIES.

    How many times must this be pointed out? It's the biggest damn blind spot McCain lovers have.

    Also, see ethanol subsidies (free trade!)

    (Obligatory: Obama is a ass-sucking statist who hates free trade, too).

  • Some Guy||

    In some ways he's pretty statist, in some ways (farm bill, free trade, immigration) he's more libertarian than almost any candidate nominated by the Republicans.

    Wait, are we talking about pre-2006 McCain or 2008 McCain? Cause I can't think of anything he became less statist on during his run to the right.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    McCain-Feingold does not equal "he's more libertarian". No self-respecting person of anywhere near libertarian thought would support that piece of shit legislation.

  • PIRS||

    I agree. If any issue is or should be "sacred" to libertarians it is free speech. This is something that McCain-Feingold tramples upon.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Me, too, on the agreementation. Anyone who cooks up idiocy like McCain-Feingold should be booted from office for violating their oath to the Constitution.

  • prolefeed||

    Most of the people self-serving in Congress have violated their oath to uphold the Constitution and should be booted out. McCain-Feingold is one of the more egregious examples.

  • ||

    I suspect McCain got the libertarian vote purely on lesser-evil grounds. Compared to Obama, he's practically Murray Rothbard.

  • PIRS||

    True on the lesser of two evils thing.

    Long term, the Marxist might be better for us because he will wake people up. Frog + boiling water = jumping out in time.

  • Leif||

    Can you imagine how wide awake people would be after a second Obama term? Where can I contribute?

  • ||

    Immigration? Libertarians want to import more future Democrat votes? Genius!

    There's a form of political correctness (self-delusion) among Libertarians that is blind to any sort of group differences among ethnic and racial groups. You guys are so friggin' ignorant you know nothing but your stupid beliefs.

  • horselips||

    Liberals are liberals regardless of whether they're capitalist liberals or socialist liberals. The underlying message is always the same. "Dear White People, please hand over your countries, your wealth and your societies to the Noble Savages, ASAP. P.S Don't forget to cut your own throats on the way out the door."

  • zoltan||

    Love the smell of collectivism in the morning.

  • Dude||

    Well, you do have to consider that another state in the mountain west bordering Colorado - New Mexico - elected the only libertarian governor in modern history, Gary Johnson

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Who do libertarians diss when they're in power?

    And you running for something, Matt?

  • John Tagliaferro||

    Damn that was good.

  • John Tagliaferro||

    Ouch.

  • ||

    I believe that Matt uses the awesome power of being Reason editor to diss John McCain by writing a book attacking him, no?

  • Sadistic Eristic||

    Libertarians are always in power, at least always in the only kind of power they seem to care about - sitting atop Olympus hurling lightening bolts of smug piety which are perceived by non-libertarians as the dim winkings of a flashlight held by a mentally challenged grocery bagger who is continually caressing his own crotch.

  • Smug Olympian Libertarian||

    Mmmmm....crotch....

  • ||

    I see someone saw "Percy Jackson" this weekend.

  • zoltan||

    +1

  • ||

    sadly, we may never know

  • PIRS||

    "it has become clear that most self-conscious libertarians are willing to participate in, and cheerlead for, the Tea Party movement as though their political futures depend on it."

    How about as though the future of the country depends on it - which it does.

  • ||

    I don't see libertarianism moving rightward, I see rightward moving libertarian.

    This is one hugely insightful point that left and right have missed and will continue to miss for years to come.

    I lambasted libertarians for taking up what i called essentially leftist arguments against the Iraq war. But in retrospect i am beginning to think there were more leftists taking up libertarian arguments against the war then i gave credit for. And now that they are in power have essentially abandoned their libertarian arguments.

    Libertarians are only liked by those out of power when they are out of power and only hated by those in power when they are in power.

  • ||

    I lambasted libertarians for taking up what i called essentially leftist arguments against the Iraq war.

    Please identify one of these "leftist arguments against the Iraq war". Bonus points for not citing an argument that Republicans used against intervention in Kosovo during the Clinton years.

  • Slut Bunwalla||

    Also please present at least one leftist who continued making the same argument after Obama was elected.

  • ||

    Didn't you realize that success in Iraq was due to Obama? Pay attention!

  • RumRunners||

    Drink!

  • MP||

    NH has a Democratic Governor, a Democratic Legislature, and 3 out of 4 CongressCritters are Democrats.

    A libertarian state? Hardly. Maybe back in the day. But not no more.

  • Inkblots||

    Shed a tear for the poor Free Staters, won't you?

  • Maverick||

    Was once cut off at a bar in Portsmouth, NH after 3 beers . . . my 1st drinks of a Friday evening. Live free or die . . . my ass!

  • PIRS||

    "a Nietzschean disdain for the poor and minorities that tends to dovetail with the atavistic and semi-racist habits of reactionary cultural traditionalists."

    Oh, here we go again with the racism BS again. This was old 20 years ago.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    The only people who can't be racists, are left-of-center. Didn't you get the memo?

  • Hobo Chang Ba||

    As a so-called "left-libertarian" (aka classical liberal), I find Keynesianism to be simultaneously corporatist (via artificial subsidization in the name of "creating jobs") and regressive (the devaluation of the currency is felt hardest by the poor). If you include the connections between poverty and race, you could argue that the policies of the modern Left have a far, far worse impact on racial minorities, regardless of the motivations behind right-wing opposition to the welfare state.

    I agree with the Left on progressive taxation, not because I support soaking the rich (in what way does this help the poor?) but because the poor have a lower proportion of discretionary income, and I'd rather them use their own money to cover their nondiscretionary expenses than rely on the government to provide these things for them. However, the gas taxes and sin taxes the Democrats seem to be all for specifically target the lowest income quadrant disproportionately.

    Also, while I, like Adam Smith and many of the classical liberals, agree with much of the Left's disdain for corporatism and corporate welfare, I understand economics enough to know that increasing corporate taxation merely passes these costs down to the consumers like a hidden, regressive sales tax.

    Likewise, I understand economics enough to know that minimum wage increases merely shave jobs off the bottom that have a value lower than that minimum wage, and make the remaining minimum wage workers work harder to pick up the slack. It also leads to prices going up to cover the increased labor costs, which once again, disproportionately impacts the poor.

    Environmentalism itself (barring the field of environmental justice - which really comes down to property rights) is an economically regressive, elitist mentality where the burden of daily expenses are ignored in the name of ends that lack utility for low income Americans.

    Most damningly, the Left supports the most regressive policy of them all: public school monopolies. In perhaps the pinnacle of McCain's presidential campaign he insisted that school choice is the civil rights issue of the new century. Charter schools, choice between public schools and even private school vouchers (structured to avoid taxpayer-supported mandatory religious indoctrination) is by far the most direct way to break the cycle of poverty. What has the modern Left proposed to improve inner city education, besides spending more money?

    The biggest problem with the left is that instead of trying to understand economics, they let emotional reactions and an irrational support for the stability of government programs and trust in politicians and bureaucrats to solve all problems govern their policymaking. My beliefs have not changed whatsoever since Obama became president. I still bash Bush all the time. However, Obama is simply proving all my theories that the "progressive" Left is in reality self-defeating and unintentionally regressive. I don't trust elite politicians notorious for corruption, corporatism and a poor understanding of economics with defending the best interests of the most voiceless in society.

  • ||

    There's no way other way of putting this: Matt Welch sucks donkey balls.

    He is playing the liberal fascists' game of "oh, no I'm not a mean-spirited racist who hates poor black people" by buying into their premises and attack memes.

    Absolutely disgusting. Politically correct libertarianism is a noxious brew. I am nauseous after reading this crapola.

  • Hobo Chang Ba||

    He is playing the liberal fascists' game of "oh, no I'm not a mean-spirited racist who hates poor black people" by buying into their premises and attack memes.

    So your point is that Matt should either ignore the attack memes, allowing them to argue that 'silence is consent', or embrace racism altogether - otherwise he's a PC A-hole? Just reminding you that the great majority of us actually aren't mean spirited racists who hate black people...and we have the right to defend ourselves if it is implied that we are.

  • Doc Merlin||

    Yes, reason praised Obama while now attacking every right winger who is far closer to us than Obama ever was.

    Politically correct libertarianism, wtf... seriously this has to stop.

  • ||

    "increasing corporate taxation merely passes these costs down to the consumers like a hidden, regressive sales tax."

    Not to mention excessive corporate taxes dampen business creation and growth, thereby reducing competitive pressure on existing large businesses from below - which encourages the formation of oligopolies...which usually end up failing when ANY competitors worth a damn show up from other nations. Case in point: Detroit.

  • Hobo Chang Ba||

    True - I would support replacing the corporate income tax entirely with a far lower corporate value tax that would basically discourage oligopolization/monopolization and would basically cover the costs of the legal protection the artificial corporate shield provides for its owners, managers and employees. Of course, in a true free market, there wouldn't be any corporations because corporations are a government-created legal entity - there would be proprietorships and partnerships that purchase indemnity insurance. For corporations, protection from indemnity is automatically granted in perpetuity by the low cost of filing the corporate charter. Why would one even bother to start a true free-market style business? The corporate entity to a large degree detaches individual actors in a corporation from responsibility for illegal acts they commit in the name of that organization.

  • ||

    All get points. One thing you might look into is the effect of government spending on land rent. The largest tax on the poor is the artificially higher rent they pay above the free market rate.

  • ||

    Who do libertarians diss when they're in power?

    Everyone who seeks to control others. Which is a lot of people, by the way.

    A libertarian in power might actually bring government to a grinding halt while the power-seekers fight over procedure and branch authority and all that. That, in itself, would be a beautiful thing to behold. And no, Tony, that's not the same thing as anarchy.

  • Tony||

    But that's stupid. You're gonna have to use government to make the reforms that take the country in a more "free" direction, right? Even in just repealing lots of stuff. A dysfunctional government leaves us with the status quo at best. Why is that what you want, and why should anyone buy into that?

  • ||

    I'll bite. My comment was part snark, but based on a practical desire, which is to bring a halt to any possibility that government could expand. You're right to recognize that moving in a more free direction would mean, possibly, repealing lots of stuff. Halting uncontrolled growth is a perfectly viable strategy, even if it is only a first step in turning down the volume on government intrusiveness.

    I don't agree with libertopians who believe that a sweeping magical dimunition of federal power is a) possible in the short term or b) even a sensible solution. If the best a libertarian in power can do is prevent more damage, that is stunning progress.

    To answer your question, the reason anyone should buy into that is because it gives everyone a chance to breathe, step back, and consider where we want to go. That is not possible while the Democrats and the Republicans spend every waking hour trying to invent new ways to increase their scope of authority.

    Wouldn't even someone like you appreciate a 4-year hiatus from government growth so we could assess whether any of that growth is meaningful, affordable, or necessary?

  • Tony||

    I'd love to bring down government growth in certain areas. Let's start with defense. But if you mean stopping spending in general perhaps a deep recession isn't the best time?

    The status quo is unsustainable in a lot of ways. That's why I said it was the best case scenario in the event of a nonfunctioning government. In reality things will just continue to get worse (among them the recession, the influence of money on politics, climate change, and healthcare costs).

    Anyway, if what you want is a dysfunctional government then you should be in pretty high spirits about now.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Tony,

    But if you mean stopping spending in general perhaps a deep recession isn't the best time?

    First: It worked in 1921.

    Second: Don't you lower your own expenditures when times are tough?

  • Tony||

    Of course I do and everyone else does. That's why government spending is necessary: nobody else is doing it.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Tony,

    Of course I do and everyone else does. That's why government spending is necessary: nobody else is doing it.

    Nobody else is doing it because they ARE NOT STUPID. Go and learn some sound economics before you engage adults in adult conversation.

  • Tony||

    By adults you mean those who believe in the economic theory that is currently in an embarrassed shambles?

  • Keynes||

    Who are you calling a shambles?!

  • ||

    This is the dumbest comment you have written since you began posting. How does libertarianism advocate uncontrolled government spending (aka Keynesian economics)?

    You have officially jumped the shark with this ridiculous statement. Libertarians were the only people who saw this economic downturn coming while retards like yourself kept silent. In addition, retards like yourself continue to advocate the same spending that got us into this mess in the first place.

  • ||

    This is the dumbest comment you have written since you began posting.

    I, for one, would like to stick up for Tony. He's said lots of dumber things than this.

  • ||

    Yes, Tony, after Bush abolished the SEC, the FTC, the IRS, the Fed, Ginnie Mae, Freddie Mac, Fannie Mae, the SSA, and Medicare, the economy went down the tubes. His radical free market policies and the subsequent outcome left laissez faire economics in a "shambles."

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Good one, Gene!

  • ||

    OK, we agree that bringing down growth in certain areas is something to "love." I'm down with defense cuts, but that means hitting the brakes on our military efforts abroad, which is different from cutting defense budget. And I do mean "stopping spending in general," in the way that I mean don't buy a fur coat when you're in debt and you've got a closet full of fur coats. Maybe those other coats are fine. Have we stopped to consider that? Let me push it further by saying, maybe we have 12 fur coats when we only need 9. What's wrong with having that conversation?

    It's sensible (if undesirable to you) that stopping spending during a recession is the best tonic. If you've ever been fired and out of work for a while, you don't keep spending like you've got a job. It's just common sense.

    You and I might be defining dysfunctional differently. To you, it is a non-functioning government during a time when more government action is required. To me, it is a government that has been paralyzed on purpose until it emerges on the other side leaner, cleaner, and devoid of many of the scales that make it, well, status quo.

  • Tony||

    It's sensible (if undesirable to you) that stopping spending during a recession is the best tonic. If you've ever been fired and out of work for a while, you don't keep spending like you've got a job. It's just common sense.

    What's common sense for a person is exactly the cause of the collective economic problem. If government stops spending too, more jobs go, and that means government debts go up even more.

    I don't see how there's any guarantee that government put to a standstill will result in a leaner one rather than a more bloated and corrupt one, but it looks like we're gonna find out sooner or later.

  • ||

    If government stops spending too, more jobs go, and that means government debts go up even more.

    There's a lot of complex reality behind that sentence. If government stops spending on things that government shouldn't be spending money on, and if government stops regulating the private sector so heavily, then jobs will spontaneously emerge in the private sector while the government's influence on how that sector works is minimized.

    A neat example of this is the calling-card mega-industry that spontaneously arose to address the needs of people who can't or won't pay for long-term mobile contracts. They're in every bloody 7-11. As far as I know, this is not a well-regulated industry, which is why we see so many dazzling options. The poor people socialists want government to coddle are getting what they need from robust market competition.

    We have government debts because government spends too much money, not because "jobs go." There is no logical correlation there. Unless you mean that cuts in spending mean that fewer taxpayers pay for those who are out of work.

  • billy-jay||

    It's not an economic problem. It's the way it's supposed to work. Is gravity a problem?

  • Sky Diver's Ghost||

    "Is gravity a problem?"

    It can be.

  • KPres||

    The paradox of thrift is bullshit, and a deflationary spiral is a temporary mechanism the market uses to clear out malinvestment, which is exactly what needs to happen.

    It's called Creative Destruction and it's the real source of human progress, making Libertarians not only the only real Liberals, but also the only real Progressives.

    You look at GDP trends during the the Great Depression and you'll realize the economy had already bottomed out in 1933 and was on it's way back up before Roosevelt passed his first New Deal initiative. The reason it lasted for 10 more years is because of the 1937 double dip it took cause by all the new malinvestment his programs created.

  • ||

    If government stops spending too, more jobs go, and that means government debts go up even more.

    Tony, google for "broken window fallacy". I dare you.

    -jcr

  • Mr. FIFY||

    When I'm out of money, I don't go into debt buying a bunch of shit I don't need.

    Why can't government restrain itself in a similar fashion?

  • Tony||

    Because government isn't the same thing as a person?

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Pitiful answer. Non-answer, really.

    You are a good dancer, though.

  • Tony||

    Thank you.

    I mean to say there's no logical reason to expect that government should necessarily behave the same way people do during a recession. There's a whole field of economics about this, which has been more in favor now that your Reaganomics has proven to be a ghastly failure.

  • ||

    That field is called Keynesian, and has made no measurable improvements in the state of a nation in recession. The beauty of Keynesian theory is that, like sky fairies, it cannot be disproved. It is force majeure as a solution.

  • Paul Krugman||

    Keynes was like unto God! NEVER besmirch His Sweet Name!

  • SkepticalTexan||

    Au contraire, mon frere. Keynesianism has been proven. Keynes distilled his the rationale for his policy prescription when he stated, "The long run is a misleading guide to current affairs. In the long run we are all dead."

    He was right. Keynes died. We're living in the long run.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Reaganomics isn't "mine", Tony. But I'd take it over Obanomics any fucking day.

  • Hobo Chang Ba||

    Tony, many of us do NOT buy into trickle-down Reaganomics. I think trickle-down is highly inefficient, as the poor are more likely to spend money in the economy productively than the wealthy. Adam Smith certainly thought so as well. Or is your false dichotomy between big government and elitist corporatism?

  • KPres||

    The government is dysfunctional because it's a massive bureaucratic quagmire contolled by corrupt politicians who only respond special interest groups and rent-seekers.

    As Joseph Shumpeter put it: "Politicians are like bad horsemen, who are too obsessed with staying in the saddle to give a care to where they're going."

    Only an idiot thinks the answer to all this is more MORE bureaucratic bullshit.

    Big government sucks. It's always sucked. Corruption gravitates to centralized power. You want a functional government? Keep it small. You want a transparent government? How about a federal registry with somewhere less than 10,000 laws.

    But you're worried that the government won't be powerful enough to combat some corporation? Is this a joke? Last time I checked, Goldman Sachs didn't have a bunch of tanks and bombs at their disposal, and I've never once seen JP Morgan throw a man in jail for the rest of his life because he decided not to refinance his mortgage.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Tony,

    A dysfunctional government leaves us with the status quo at best.

    I just love your non sequiturs and question begging, Tony!

    What's "dysfunctional"? Why would that be a bad thing?

  • Tony||

    I just told you why it would be a bad thing. It would leave us with the status quo or worse, which is no libertopia.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Beats the hell out of a pure liberal state, Tony.

  • Tony||

    I think we were on about a hypothetical libertarian government, which would be everyone squabbling and doing nothing apparently, which means we finally have a libertarian government!

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Because we can't survive unless government is doing things constantly, right?

  • Sadistic Eristic||

    If you found yourself locked in a room with two vicious, snarling dogs, would you prefer that they fight with one another or both simultaneously take an interest in you?

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Tony,

    I just told you why it would be a bad thing. It would leave us with the status quo or worse, which is no libertopia.

    Tony, this is just an assertion. I am asking why it would be so. Why does a non-functioning government lead necessarily to a "status quo"? If the local thug (the one that steals money from all saying that "it's for the children"), suddenly DIES, how can that lead to a "status quo"? I don't understand your logic...

  • Tony||

    I don't understand your logic...

    That's because you inhabit a completely different universe than I.

    Why can't you just move to a cave somewhere where government can't get you? Why do you have to impose your anarchist revolution on me? Because you believe in freedom, but only for yourself.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Why do you feel anyone is "imposing" anything on you, Tony?

    And why do you continue to mischaracterize via inispid drool like "you believe in freedom, but only for yourself"? Do you truly believe Old M is actually wishing he were the only free person on the whole fucking planet?

    You're more brain-damaged than I thought.

  • Tony||

    OM wants government to die. He said so. I don't know about you but that would really be a fly in my soup.

    OM doesn't realize that him exercising his freedoms has the potential of imposing on others' freedom. I don't really believe he wants to spend his life defending his property with a shotgun, so he must think only he exists, and perhaps in his universe that's true.

  • ||

    Tony, if government continues taxing or borrowing and spending, they are taking resources away from the private sector and spending them. Since govt has no profit/loss mechanism to determine the utility of the expenditures govt expenditure will be less effective than private investment. That's one reason why govt should not spend, even during a recession.

  • Tony||

    Utility can be determined by other means than market forces. And not everything that is useful will be produced by the market.

  • ||

    "Market forces" are the aggregate of individual determinations of utility. So, there's not really another valid method to determine utility other than people's choices.

    But that's not really my point. It's more that the govt has no way to know if it's actions are pulling us out of recession because there is no profit/loss mechanism in govt. I'd say the current employment statistics as compared to the promises of the administration prior to the passage of the stimulus legislation provide evidence to that point.

  • KPres||

    Yeah, the Soviet Union used all those "other means", which is why per capita GDP never exceeded $3,000/year until Gorbachev started enacting some free-market reforms.

  • Chad||

    Matth, the private sector spend the last couple of decades borrowing trillions of dollars from the Chinese, Japanese, and Saudis so that we could buy spiffy granite countertops for our over-sized homes, and big huge vehicles to haul cheap Chinese crap back from Walmart.

    The government could pick projects by having a monkey toss darts at a wall, and could hardly do worse.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    No, Chad, the private sector spent their own money, which they earned via their labor, to buy those evil items you so despise.

    Our GOVERNMENT borrowed trillions from outsiders. WE didn't.

  • Chad||

    Dear God, LG. Did you not notice everyone and their brother refinancing every few months and blowing their wads on toys? Our saving rate almost hit zero, when it should be ~10% for retirement alone.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Not wanting big government = imposing on other people?

  • ||

    Yeah, we're imposing that worldview that says you're not allowed to force other people to support you.

  • billy-jay||

    Is it really hard to grasp this concept? I doubt very much that he wants to do everything on his own. He's free to hire anyone else to do that at any time. And the choice is entirely his.

    And imposing freedom on others? People are free to lock themselves in cages all they want, Tony. Freedom can't be imposed.

  • ||

    OM wants government to die. He said so. I don't know about you but that would really be a fly in my soup

    Yeah, we know how much it sucks for a toady like you when the bully moves to another school. Suddenly, all that vicarious POWER you revel in is gone, and the only way you have to get people to do what you want is to bitch at them.

    -jcr

  • RM||

    You can't "impose" anarchism on somebody else.

    You're free to continue to function under the same contractual obligations that you did before, provided the other party(ies) agree to them as well.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Tony doesn't get that, RM.

  • Hobo Chang Ba||

    Whoa whoa whoa - slow down here Mr. Tony. In a miniarchist libertarian society, individuals would still organize themselves into voluntary collectivist groups to provide economies of scale, protection, welfare and all the other things you seem to think the government alone can provide. You could have a voluntary communist commune within a libertarian paradise if you so choose. Can you have a libertarian subsection in a statist society? No, you can't.

    Libertarianism imposes nothing on anybody, allowing people to organize themselves naturally and live in the community which best meets their needs, as long as the organization is not compulsory. Imposition comes from mandate, not from lack of mandate, and you are the one advocating for mandates.

  • ||

    It is stupid to continue down the same path simply because so many others have been following it for so long. Standing still is often times better than continuing to take steps in the wrong direction.

  • ||

    A dysfunctional government leaves us with the status quo

    Democrats in power and Tony admits it is dysfunctional.

  • Old Mexican||

    Certainly, few self-conscious libertarians have much tolerance for racism, but they are encouraging a point of view about "welfare" that has long been catnip to racists.

    What a way to muddle the waters! See? That's why I love so-called "liberals": They revel in dishonest and fallacious rhetoric like happy pigs in the muck.

    So if you are against the welfare state, you are then in agreement with racists, notwithstanding any valid arguments against the welfare state. See how that works???

  • In Time Of War||

    I'm glad he believes libertarian support isn't crucial, because the dems probably shouldn't count on too much in 2012.

  • prolefeed||

    From all the resignations, I'd say the Dems aren't counting on much libertarian / "independent" support in 2010 either. I mean, a Kennedy in a liberal NE state deciding not to run?

  • bleek obummer||

    Hey Libertarians! Liberals Are Just Not That Into You!

    Good to hear. Big government Republicans aren't into libertarians either. Also good to hear.

  • Most Freepers||

    We hate libertarians! They steal votes from Republicans! Yaaagh!

  • ||

    Those libertarians who dream of making progress via "pragmatic" alliances with the "major" parties just need to give it up.

  • ||

    Yeah, they shouldn't dream of things like ending the draft. That would be nuts, to think that Milton Friedman getting nominated to a panel by Nixon could make a difference.

  • robc||

    I had to register for selective service in the 1980s. Sure, they didnt actually draft anyone, but its not like Friedman truly succeeded.

  • ||

    So we have to sign up for something that does not happen vs it actually happening.

    Yeah you are right there is no deference between a real draft that forces people to join the military and a fake draft that does not.

  • SIV||

    I know many of you hate this but only one major party elects anyone who even leans libertarian.

  • EJ||

    "I know many of you hate this but only one major party elects anyone who even leans libertarian."

    This is so true... though most republicans are not libertarians, most elected libertarains are republicans. Republics have the likes of Jeff Flake, Ron Paul, Gary Johnson, Bill Weld, etc. Even people like Mark Sanford and Paul Ryan have their leanings in this way. Find me a prominant democat that you can call a libertarian or even libertarain leaning?

  • ||

    On the Democratic side Bill Richardson is probably the closest: supports concealed carry, medical marijuana, opposes death penalty, pro-choice, fiscally responsible tax cutter.

  • SIV||

    Bill Richardson's "libertarian leanings" disappeared as he ran for the Dem nomination for President.He redemmed himself slightly at the so-called "gay debate" when he said homosexuality is a choice.I LoLed in both agreement and at his political stupidity.He retracted it the next day.

  • The Bearded Hobbit||

    His indoor smoking ban and (if passed) ban on cell phones on the vast rural roads of the state have earned him a place in my NM Governors Hell.

    .. Hobbit

  • SIV||

    William Weld only posed as a libertarian until he found it a losing proposition.

    Mark Sanford had real potential till he blew his social conservative cred.

  • SIV||

    Find me a prominant democat that you can call a libertarian or even libertarain leaning?

    The late Larry McDonald (D-GA)
    The John Birch society guy the Soviets killed when they shot down KAL007 September1, 1983.

  • ||

    I think it works different then that. Dems when they are out of power cuddle up to us then run away when they are in power. Same with republicans. But not all people are so blatantly hypocritical. Dems and republicans bring people to us when they act this way and some of those people stay with us.

  • ap||

    "Ayn Rand: a Nietzschean disdain for the poor and minorities"

    there should be an online counter for each time rand's books are mis-represented in this way. that thing would move like the debt clock.

  • ed||

    One need only read Rand's essay Racism to dispel that notion. I've never read a more concise and devastating indictment of that form of collectivism.

  • PIRS||

    +1

  • ||

    Thanks for the reminder. It's been years since I opened The Virtue of Selfishness.

  • ed||

    They're all worth re-reading. Her achievement grows as the "extremism" her detractors smeared her with proves to be prescient. But she wasn't fortune-telling; human actions have predictable results and consequences when your philosophy is reality-based.

  • ||

    I am no Randian. But anyone who calls her racist, is an illiterate or never bother to pay attention to what she actually said.

  • SkepticalTexan||

    From the absurd statement,"Ayn Rand: a Nietzschean disdain for the poor and minorities", one learns nothing about Rand, but much about its author.

    Rand was certainly not a racist, though one could argue that she had, to paraphrase, a Nietzschean disdain for parasites and losers.

    From his errant statement, we learn that Mr. Kilgore actually equates "minorities" with losers. However, we know that in objective reality not all "minorities" are parasites and losers. In other words, we learn from this errant statement that Mr. Kilgore is, in fact, a rascist.

    There are many legitimate critiques of libertarianism in general and Rand in particular, but I don't pay much attention to racists like Kilgore.

  • Old Mexican||

    Progressives who previously fawned over the libertarians' Jeffersonian modesty are now exposed to the unattractive aspect of libertarianism that is familiar to readers of Ayn Rand: a Nietzschean disdain for the poor and minorities that tends to dovetail with the atavistic and semi-racist habits of reactionary cultural traditionalists.

    Let me put this claptrap in to more understandable language:

    Previously, Progressives paid lip service to liberty, but when Libertarians correctly pointed out how the welfare state abridges people's freedom and property rights, then Progressives had to accuse Libertarians of wanting to starve children to death.

  • bleek obummer||

    Progressives believe in liberty - just not the liberty you and I believe in. Liberty to take your money via taxes, liberty to control you via mandates and menacing regulation, liberty to accumulate massive debt, etc.

    Liberty is freedom from government and that rubs "progressives" the wrong way. To them, government is first and foremost and controlling you and your actions is a close second.

  • Tony||

    Liberty is freedom from government and that rubs "progressives" the wrong way.

    It rubs liberals the wrong way because it's simple-minded bullshit. There are forces other than government that can take away human freedom. The whole point of a rightly-ordered government is to be the thing that is big enough to deal with them.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Tony,

    There are forces other than government that can take away human freedom. The whole point of a rightly-ordered government is to be the thing that is big enough to deal with them.

    Sounds like classic Tony's circular logic, and Tony does not disappoint!

    "We need a freedom-stamping government to defend our liberty because there are other things bigger than government that can trample on our liberties"

    It just dazzles the eyes! Like looking directly into the sun, or into a nuclear flash! Wow!

  • Tony||

    But you're begging the question because government cannot be anything but freedom-stamping. I don't want a freedom-stamping government. I think they can exist. And as far as I'm concerned a dysfunctional or nonfunctional government is one freedom-stamping version.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Tony,

    But you're begging the question because government cannot be anything but freedom-stamping[...]And as far as I'm concerned a dysfunctional or nonfunctional government is one freedom-stamping version.

    Interesting notion - a functional government is not freedom-stamping, but a nonfunctional one is NOT. Kind of like saying a fully functional serial killer is less destructive than a dead one...

    I like your logic.

  • Old Mexican||

    Sorry, that should have been:

    a functional government is not freedom-stamping, but a nonfunctional one IS.

  • Tony||

    I believe that governments can exist that don't stomp freedom but that enhance it. Believing that to be impossible is a good way to get a government that does stomp on freedom.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Tony,

    I believe that governments can exist that don't stomp freedom but that enhance it.

    That's ridiculous. No, it is mind boggling stupid - government IS coercion. How can COERCION enhance liberty?

    Believing that to be impossible is a good way to get a government that does stomp on freedom.

    One notion does not lead to the other.

  • Chad||

    Please explain to me how someone in Denmark is less free than an American.

    I suppose your answer is "well, they don't have as much after tax money to buy cheap junk from China, and that is a VERY IMPORTANT freedom".

    Of course, I would respond by pointing out that they are free to not worry about health insurance, to not worry as much as we do about getting a good education or falling through the safety nets, and to take vacations once in a while.

    I will trade that for cheap Chinese crap anyday. So would anyone but a libertarian.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Meanwhile, you pay more than your fair share in taxes *voluntarily*, thinking it will do something worthwhile... and you want a one-world government/one-world tax rate.

    You're an idiot, Chad.

  • Chad||

    Incapable of answering my question, eh, Mr. FIFY?

  • In Time Of War||

    Hi Chad! Just wondering where you get off dismissing everyone else's stuff as "cheap Chinese crap". Did God give you some sort of prescient ability, a greater wisdom, and the authority to tell everyone else what they should and should not own? What does and does not make them happy?

    That's a staggering arrogance on your part.

  • Abdul Alhazred||

    All government "stamps" freedom, the only question is how much. Minarchists (like myself) accept that this is a necessary evil.

  • ||

    There are? Governments have done more damage to humanity on an order of magnitude greater than your corporate bogeyman.

  • bleek obummer||

    Tony,

    Since you're the expert on "simple-minded bullshit", I see your point.

  • Tony||

    Since you're the expert on "simple-minded bullshit", I see your point.

    Most of what I say here is simple-minded bullshit so that does make me the expert. Actually what most progressives say is simple-minded bullshit so that makes me an excellent progressive.

  • ||

    We need government to take our liberty away so it can protect it.

  • Obama||

    That is a list of positive liberties, you make my near name sake. You only believe in negative liberties. They are negative because they make me frown because I can't use them as leverage for political gain.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Oh, we get it now! Positive liberty is better than negative liberty! That's why it's called NEGATIVE!

    We are truly blessed to have you guide us, Obama. Clearly, we are too fucking stupid to live our lives without your divine presence.

  • Old Mexican||

    [E]ven liberals who are frustrated with the president have trouble mustering any sympathy for the Obama-bashing of contemporary libertarians[...]

    Which translates to: Liberals are chauvinistic about their party affiliation no matter the idiot that leads them.

  • ||

    Wait, major party douchbags are partisans?!? Holy shit! Someone tell joe!

  • Mr. Completely, TotallyObvious||

    +!

  • Tony||

    No, what it means is that liberal bashing of Obama is based on real complaints, and libertarian bashing is based on whatever they've heard from Glenn Beck that day.

  • Gene Berkman||

    Old Mexican @ &:14 PM: Si! Es verdad!

  • Old Mexican||

    But it is NOT 8:14 pm yet...

  • ||

    "Nietzschean disdain for the poor and minorities that tends to dovetail with the atavistic and semi-racist habits of reactionary cultural traditionalists."

    Fucking total bullshit. My experience with two liberal chicks: Neither of them found the time to volunteer to help me feed homebound indigent residents of DC, despite my asking them to three times.

    They also won't fuck me. Because, clearly they are racist.

    Also liberals love the inflation, which really fucks over the poor and dark-skinned.

  • ||

    Ah, your problem is simple. You have to ask liberal chicks four times before they respond.

  • ||

    Oh, dude, you are so naive. You don't bang liberal chicks by actually helping the poor; you bang them by talking about helping the poor. Or, more precisely, about how to force other people to help the poor.

  • Banjos Kick Ass!||

    It also helps to talk about how much you hate people who don't give a shit about the poor, and to be able to play acoustic guitar.

  • Liberal chick in candy comm'l||

    ... or blogging about helping the poor. I love blogging!

  • Liberal chick in candy comm'l||

    ... or blogging about helping the poor. I love blogging!

  • KPres||

    No, no, no.

    You don't bang liberal chicks by talking about helping the poor, you bang liberal chicks by talking about how much you hate the rich!

  • Sadistic Eristic||

    Liberal Axiom #4:
    Liberal expression of concern for a group of other people is inversely proportional to their actual level of interaction with the group.

  • Ted Danson||

    Here's a pro tip for banging liberal women. Keep an obtrusive bookshelf filled with a well-worn copy of the The Feminist Mystique, a copy of The Fear of Flying and some contemporary works about ecological racism and social justice. Don't bother to read them, just make sure they are displayed prominently. Also, it helps to be either a really good-looking white guy or to have a really big ... house.

  • ¢||

    Nietzschean disdain for the poor and minorities

    "Well-read" fail. Nietzsche disdained every group of people except contemporary (to him) Jews. There's a bunch of stuff inside books. His, even. Check it out sometime.

    I don't give one shit about ACORN

    They're a huge corporate-welfare queen / state cut-out. You could give them a very libertarian shit, unless that "Palin at gunpoint" shield (of Nietzschean disdain!) is too precious to dent.

  • Matt Welch||

    Not saying they're not worthy of giving a shit about, rather pointing out that I don't happen to.

  • Sadistic Eristic||

    Not that I am insisting that you be a purist, but I thought libertarians considered the prevention of fraud to be one of the few legitimate functions of government. ACORN clearly engages in fraud.

    Do libertarians care about the integrity of the electoral process? ACORN seems to working to undermine that integrity.

  • K-Y||

    Without a government capable of granting gifts and favors, there would be no Acorn for government to prevent from defrauding.

  • Sadistic Eristic||

    True. Nevertheless, we have such a government and ACORN does exist.

  • Maxwell||

    It's been a long time since I've read any Nietzsche, but did he really have disdain for the poor and minorities? I don't really remember that. I also don't remember him giveing a pass to the Jews, contemporary or not.

  • Nietzsche||

    I said embrace hybrid vigor, not off the Uighurs!

  • Shagster||

    Nietzsche ended his friendship with Wagner over Wagner being an anti-semite, IIRC.

    And I vaguely recall a line about his respect for the jewish people where he said something like "they have been through the cruible." Their suffering and oppression had tempered their character, or something like that.

  • Kolohe||

    They're a huge corporate-welfare queen / state cut-out.

    As in other matters, 'huge' is matter of opinion, I guess.

  • Tony||

    In other words, liberals have been consistently on the rational side of things.

    The Iraq War is something any rational person should have disdained, and eventually most of the country did. Liberals and libertarians united. Good job! I'll buy this version of history,

    Democrats take over, and what do libertarians do? Sympathize with the irrationalists and feed the same machine that committed all the horrors of the Bush administration.

    All I read here is apocalyptic insanity about liberals and pragmatic Machiavellianism with the far right.

    You know, that frighteningly large portion of the population that believes jesus rode on dinosaurs?

  • yojimbo||

    I have yet to come accross a libertarian who supported bush's statist policies that you are reffering to as "horrors"

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Bear in mind, most liberals view anyone a curly cunt hair over the right-of-center mark = knuckle-dragging, racist, misogynist warmongering capitalist pig dogs.

  • ||

    Go back and read some of the articles in this magazine written around the time of the buildup to the Iraq war. It's pretty embarrassing in places....

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Tony,

    In other words, liberals have been consistently on the rational side of things.

    Yes - for instance, there's a lot of rationality behind the notion that you need to spend money in order to get out of debt. Fabulous logic. First rate.

    The Iraq War is something any rational person should have disdained, and eventually most of the country did. Liberals and libertarians united. Good job! I'll buy this version of history[...]

    If you wish. The REAL story is the way liberals were so silent about their representatives in Congress and the Senate paying lip service to anti-war principles and yet: voting [alongside the Big Gov Republicans] for the war, to finance it AND, in unison, to spy on Americans, whereas the libertarians were consistently against the two wars, the Patriot Act and the funding of the war from the very beginning.

    http://www.antiwar.com/

    Democrats take over, and what do libertarians do? Sympathize with the irrationalists and feed the same machine that committed all the horrors of the Bush administration.

    You mean the horrors like the bailouts and the deficits and the incremental deployment of troops in the Middle East and the broken promises and . . . Oh, sorry, that's the CURRENT government's horrors as well!

  • Tony||

    Liberals are in two camps. Those who are going Nader, and those who know that Democrats are the lesser of two evils.

    You on the other hand are one of the irrationlists. You don't believe in science. There's no excuse for that.

  • ||

    Choady, your sockpuppet master is on fire today. But be careful; this got a little too close to over the top.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Tony,

    Liberals are in two camps. Those who are going Nader, and those who know that Democrats are the lesser of two evils.

    I thought you were going to say there were two types, the looters with no spine and the thieves with no character, but I guess then that there are the Naderites and the Democratic fascists.

    It's the same shit.

    You on the other hand are one of the irrationlists. You don't believe in science.

    Woo Hoo!! A non sequitur! What a way to bring that one up into the mix, with no justification of any kind!

    By the way, I trust science. I just don't trust flim-flam artists and shysters.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    "...those who know that Democrats are the evil of two lessers."

    Fixed it for ya, Tony. That'll be ten bucks.

  • Chad||

    Old Mexican|2.12.10 @ 7:52PM|#
    Re: Tony,

    In other words, liberals have been consistently on the rational side of things.
    Yes - for instance, there's a lot of rationality behind the notion that you need to spend money in order to get out of debt. Fabulous logic. First rate.

    Yes, it is fabulous logic. Almost all new businesses use it, actually.

    So do sick people. How absurd would it be if some very ill person said "Doc, don't treat me, it will send me into debt. Never mind that without the treatment, I will lose my job and go even further into debt".

  • ||

    New businesses don't start out trillions of dollars in the hole, you moron.

    -jcr

  • ||

    Why, oh why, would liberals consider pleasing libertarians unimportant to their political ambitions? Perhaps because of attitudes like this?

    If you're unsure of why this phenomenon occurs, try thinking about why so few children are born with genes passed on from homosexuals.

  • ||

    Did you just call libertarians gay? Because while I'm sure some libertarians ride loud, annoying Harleys, most don't.

  • Abdul Alhazred||

    That's fags, not gays.

  • yojimbo||

    "Hey Libertarians! Liberals Are Just Not That Into You!"

    WOOHOO!!!

  • ||

    Tulpa, what does the last sentence of your 7:32 response to Tony mean?

  • PIRS||

    Maybe that politicians screw you over but they will at least make you breakfast in the morning if you vote?

  • ||

    Thanks for the nightmare image of Nancy Pelosi bringing me breakfast in bed. I hate you.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Bonus: She'll be wielding a monster strap-on. Take your pegging like a man!

  • Mr. Pelosi||

    She's good at it. Take it from me.

  • ||

    Homosexuals:procreative sex :: Libertarians:voting

  • ||

    That's ok, libertarians are not into liberals either.

  • Bingo||

    Liberals can go fuck themselves. Their opposition to state involvement in individual lives during the Bush administration was nothing more than partisan posturing. The drug war, warrantless wiretapping, militarization of police, multiple wars, and fiscal irresponsibility continue in full swing now that their Sun King is in office, and they support him every step of the way.

    Fuck liberals, fuck Democrats, fuck conservatives, and fuck Republicans. No more goddamn alliances with either of the duopolists.

  • Tony||

    No liberals do not support these things, and they are very vocal about it, and are actually trying to do something about it by engaging with the Obama administration. They just know that all those things we all despise aren't going to go away by voting Republican.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Tony,

    No liberals do not support these things,

    You mean they do not support profligacy?

    News to me, Tony. News to me.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Well, now, lookee here!

    http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSN1215088420100212

    By Jon Hurdle

    PHILADELPHIA, Feb 12 (Reuters) - The U.S. government argued on Friday that it should be allowed access to people's cell-phone records to help track suspected criminals.

    A Justice Department attorney urged a federal appeals court in Philadelphia to overturn lower court rulings denying it the right to seek information from communications companies about the call activity of specific numbers that authorities believe are associated with criminal activity. ...

    You were saying, Tony?

  • Tony||

    Find me a liberal who supports that action, or a conservative who doesn't want to expand that power to include hot poker raping for anyone deemed a terrorist.

  • ||

    Episiarch,

    So, who is Tony? It's not Cesar come back to us--he was too good to go over the top so often.

    A former regular? An editor? One of us?

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    I choked down the last five minutes of Olbermann's on-air abortion drippings, and he had a segment with Weigel on the Captain America controversy.

    I feel so... dirty.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    I don't see Obama telling the "Justice Department attorney" to withdraw his appeal...

  • Tony||

    hot poker raping

    And oh, by the way... *looks around*

    I'M A TERRORIST!

    Have at it, boys.

    < goatse.jpg >

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Nice non-answer to the cell-phone story, Tony.

  • Tony||

    That wasn't me. Anyway, my answer is: it's troubling.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Well, that's a gooderer answer.

  • PIRS||

    "Find me a liberal who supports that action"

    Umm, apparently Barack Obama. Unless your point is that Obama is a "progressive" and therefore not a true liberal.

  • MJ||

    The Obama administartion is supporting it. Is Obama not a liberal?

    I think what the Obama administartion is arguing is a step beyond what the Bush administartion did. Those warrantless wiretaps were on foreigners operating outside the country who were communicating with people in the US. Obama's admin is arguing that US citizens in the US not in contact with a foriegn agent have "no expectation of privacy" with regards to their cell phone records.

  • Bingo||

    Tony, you do realize that your "progressive" politicians may talk a lot about their opposition for it but they actually use every bit of their will to continue the implementation of these policies, right?

    I know you want people that aren't in the best situation to have more opportunity in their lives (I think this is what progressives really believe, deep down) but all of the policies and actions of the government are very much about enriching a well-connected few by using the hopes and dreams of the very poorest of society.

  • Tony||

    Guess I'm just not that cynical. Government isn't going away, so we might as well have the best one we can get, and ignoring the problems won't solve them.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Nice thoughts, Tony. Too bad electing Republicans and Democrats fucks up "hav[ing] the best [government] we can get".

    Fixed it for ya. Ten more bucks on your tab.

  • Tony||

    I never solicited your services. Go away, panhandler.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    But you'll give your hard-earned money to total strangers in a vain hope that it won't be misspent?

  • Bingo||

    You're not exactly refuting me, just calling me cynical. I agree that if we must have a government it should be the best one we can get. Current and past admins aren't even in the same ballpark. I think the problem might be systemic. What do you think?

  • SIV||

    I know you want people that aren't in the best situation to have more opportunity in their lives (I think this is what progressives really believe, deep down)
    ROFL

  • Abdul Alhazred||

    What have the democrats done to reign in the drug war? What have they done about warrantless wiretapping? What have they done about the militarization of police? I'd ask what they've done about fiscal responsibility, but that has never been a liberal priority. Oh and Obama adopted Bush's Iraq policy and escalated the war in Afghanistan.

  • SIV||

    What do you mean "what have they done?"

    They support all that crap

  • Abdul Alhazred||

    Tony proclaimed "No liberals do not support these things" so I wondered why, when they take power do they never do anything about them.

  • KPres||

    Right. Because I've seen SOOOO many war protests since Obama took over!

    Oh, they whisper it, so they can try and save face.

    Liberal Partisan: "psst. hey, can we maybe cut back the troops in Afganistan?"

    Obama: "NO! More troops!"

    Liberal Partisan: "oh, ok. just a suggestion, my Lord."

    Fact: 88% of self-described Liberals approve of Obama's presidency, exactly the same number as when he first took office. When they tell you they're trying to stop all his war-mongering, know that they're full of shit.

    Liberals don't hate wars, they hated George Bush because he was a Republican and they're Democrats. Once their guy's in power, they don't care anymore.

    Rule #1: Never believe anything a liberal says. It's all lies and manipulation. They don't care about peace, freedom, or poverty (else they'd love free trade, since that's done more to alleviate poverty than all the gov't programs in history! Instead they support union tariffs!).

    What they care about is Big government. Everything else is just an excuse to expand the size and scope of the federal power. They're nothing but elitist pigs.

  • ||

    No liberals do not support these things, and they are very vocal about it

    You can tell by all the war protests that didn't occur when Obama decided to send 40K troops to Afghanistan. The left is protesting that by staying at home and being quiet.

    Tony, you are so full of partisan shit your comments are brown.

  • ||

    Well said, Bingo. Oh, and you forgot to say "fuck Michael Bay, and fuck Roland Emerich".

  • Bingo||

    I can ironically like Bay and Emmerich! I can't ironically like the Obama administration. Sometimes things are so shitty they are funny, and sometimes things are so shitty they are sad.

  • Megan Fox||

    fuck Michael Bay

    Not even with Tony's vagina.

  • ||

    Why do you hate Universal Soldier?

  • Kurt Wimmer||

    Just leave me out of all this. I have a vision for a world where we teach gun kata to youth in kindergarten.

  • ||

    I would generally agree with your comments on this matter, but would offer Obama's declining approval among LIBERALS as evidence of them calling him on his posturing. It took the Republicans who voted for Bush almost two full terms to figure it out that he was full of it.

  • Tony||

    They're a little... slow.

  • Kilgore's Snout||

    You tell 'em, Tony. We don't need libertarians. We don't need ANYBODY. We'll go it alone together as liberals to the gates of Hell if we have to, and say, 'fuck you Lucifer. You don't even exist.' We'll go up to the Gates of Bone and Ivory, and say, fuck you Sandman, you don't exist either!' We are liberals, Goddammit, and that means something.

  • Tawny Madison||

    Sure my job is stupid, but I'm going to do it the best I can anyway.

  • Ring||

    Except as previously stated, among liberals, Obama is still at 88% approval rating. Only non-liberals (i.e. gracious conservatives and independents) have called him on his posturing. Despite the catastrophe, they are still standing by their man.

    Ergo, as per Tony's comment below, it is the Liberals who are a little slow.

  • ||

    You know what? The Democrats and Republicans have both proved that they don't give a shit about ethics, morality, the good of the country, moderation, civil liberties, fiscal sanity, etc. It's just a game about manipulating enough people through fear tactics, lies, and heart-string-pulling to get in or retain power. That's it.

    So they're both dead to me.

  • ||

    Best comment on this thread; I agree whole-heartedly!

  • Bingo||

    So what do we/you/me/people-that-are-opposed-to-it do about all the shit? It's one thing to say you are against it, but it means nothing. I don't think things will change for the better. The rights of the minority are gone because the rules governing our government (the Constitution) essentially do no apply anymore.

  • ||

    It's the critical question, of course. Can limited government be restored? There's one chance, that some sort of massively unpopular government or huge scandal will actually get anti-government animus to the heights needed to get libertarians into power.

    Other than that, we're on the slow road to tyranny.

  • Bingo||

    I'm hoping for an election that results in a constitutional crisis. I don't think that the US is united through a common culture, goals, or ideals anymore, and maybe it's time to review those goals and adjust accordingly.

    If states rights were in full force, it wouldn't be a problem. But the authority of the Federal Government nullifies the cultural differences between the states and forces a one-size-fits-all ideology on them. There is no reason for the Bible Belt to be following the ideals of California and progressive regions like California to be submitting to the whims Bible Belt.

  • Tony||

    Civil war! Civil war!

  • Bingo||

    Are you kidding me? War isn't the answer, and I never said it was.

  • Edwin Starr||

    If war isn't the answer, then what is it good for?

  • strat||

    The scary thing is that the Canadians actually have a few of those cultural differences left.

    They still have the occasional armed standoff against First Nations activists, but I wonder whether they'd be quicker or slower to bring out the big guns against their own folks in a pinch.

    Then again, I just read yesterday that cops come to visit to take guns if one forgets to renew their license, so maybe I know already.

  • Alex||

    Can limited government be restored?

    Via extant political avenues? No.

  • ||

    once more

    Ahem

    2005 bitches

  • ||

    Nice wayback. Oh, I miss Rick Barton and thoreau.

  • Abdul Alhazred||

    "and both consider the promotion of individual autonomy to be a positive good."

    I missed that part of the "progressive" platform.

  • SIV||

    progressives openly and proudly support collectivism, the opposite of "individual autonomy"

  • alan||

    libertarianism that is familiar to readers of Ayn Rand: a Nietzschean disdain for the poor and minorities

    Interesting choice of a word Kilgore uses here. Nietzschean Intellectuals do not throw that word around as an insult. Recall it's use in No One Here Gets Out Alive which most of you read in junior high. Recall its use in your mandated English lit classes.

    It doesn't so much represent a philosophical thesis as it is a slightly exotic and faux-sophisticated way of saying, 'dark', 'alluring', 'sexy'.

    There are two meanings to what Kilgore is saying, the first, 'Damn, you libertarians. I can't quit you sexy bitches no matter how I try. I wished I had the guts to be like you. No, I wished I could quit you'

    Poor, lovelorn bastard, in love with the badboy.

    The other is, yo, sublimated racism, straight up projected on his part.

  • ||

    It was that damned Hope and Change after years of Bush that fooled some of those silly libertarians.

    Sucks when you lose your cynicism, just to rediscover it a year later. Kind of like a wolf ugly one night stand, that lasts a year.

  • Bingo||

    Can you elaborate please?

  • ||

    Bush sucked, people wanted something different. I would have linked the Eddie Murphy routine for Ritz cracker, but the spam filter nazi is all over that evil code.

    The new and improved spam filter appears to be operated by retarded chimps with a chronic masturbation problem. Whoever thought it was a good idea to purchase, implement, and pay for this software is two steps below the retarded jerking off chimps, mouth gaping in wonderment of the spectacle of masturbating monkeys. (consider this my email, try not to get chimp sperm on it)

  • Bingo||

    Change isn't always good. Hope is sort of a non-player.

  • ||

    You don't need to tell me that. I didn't vote for him, or the maverick career politician, or the republican in libertarian clothing.

    I didn't buy the hope or the change. Which is a good thing since it doesn't look like those that did can return it for a refund.

  • ed||

    self-described Randian business commentator Rick Santelli blasted "losers" who couldn't pay their mortgages

    Lots of people are "self-described" admirers of this person or that, but they speak only for themselves. One's worth cannot be judged by the words or actions of another.

  • Bingo||

    Again, The Moon is a Harsh Mistress is a much better libertarian novel than any of Rand's hyper-individualist works. God, I hope that the screen-adaption actually works.

  • ed||

    Aren't you comparing apples (libertarianism) and oranges (individualism)?

  • Bingo||

    Not in the eyes of many media institutions.

  • ed||

    Huh?

  • SIV||

    Snow on the ground ice on the streets here in the Deep South. I refuse to watch any of that festival in celebration of international and national collectivism (particularly the Nazi- yes NAZI opening ceremonies)
    The Olympic Games.

  • ||

    The description of the Santelli " losers" quote bugged me back then and bugs me now that he's recycling it. As a general rule, when someone quotes you, but only uses one word, they're probably taking your quote out of context.

    If you actually, you know, watched the segment where he said it, it was very clear from context that when Santelli said it, he used the term "losers" in the context of "winners and losers" in the market.

    IOW, he was talking about people who had lost money, IE losers. I hate it when people say something perfectly rational and it gets twisted into some kind of vicious slur.

  • Iced Borscht||

    Christ does Kilgore come off as insufferable. Does he honestly sit around and wonder if his colleagues are contemplating racist thoughts? Isn't there a better use of one's time?

  • Mad Max||

    If he writes for the New Republic, maybe he should sit around wondering if his colleagues are making up stories.

  • true believer||

    If he writes for the New Republic, he should sit around wondering if his colleagues are making up enough stories.

  • Abdul Alhazred||

    Even some of the traditional progressive/libertarian overlaps wear thin on closer examination. In the case of the drug war in particular I think you can find plenty of liberal/progressives who support it. In my experience anti-drug warriors on the left are usually driven by a sympathy for marijuana counter-culture, beyond pot (and maybe one or two other "soft" drugs) they have no problem at all with perpetuating the overall policy. I had a professor in college who actually advocated making marijuana legal, and bringing back alcohol prohibition. Progressives by and large have no problem with the "for their own good" command and control mentality that underlies the drug war, they just realize that marijuana isn't that harmful, so they want to give it a pass.

  • SIV||

    Progressives want a WoDs on the same scale only offering coercive "treatment" for users in lieu of prison."King pins" and traffickers are regarded as illegal "corpurashuns" and deserve what they get now.

  • Jamie Kelly||

    Fuck liberals. They're the undoing. I hope they all end up eating dirt.

  • Mr. Complete, TotallyObvious||

    Everyone ends up eating dirt.

  • ||

    I don't give one shit about ACORN,

    I guess the abuses of progressives are so manifold that we can't all give a shit about each one of them, but, really, ACORN should be somewhere on the list.

    Funded almost entirely be government, pushing an anti-liberty agenda, often through illegal means - I mean, what's not to hate about ACORN?

  • ||

    Ironically, the thing that got them in trouble -- supporting putative prostitution -- is actually in line with libertarian beliefs.

  • Sadistic Eristic||

    And just what is the libertarian age of consent?

    ACORN is in trouble for a lot more than what's on the sting tapes.

  • ||

    Matt just said that to maintain his cosmotarian street cred. Anybody in their right mind should have a problem with an organization whose sole mission is to undermine the electoral process.

  • Jamie Kelly||

    The twats who diss Rush Limbaugh on this site need to go back to the basics, and listen to his sturdy defense of the individual, even if it means you'll have to stomach anti-abortion and pro-religious shit.

  • alan||

    Oh, GOP, this time it is going to be different, isn't it?

    I can so feel it.

    We wont squabble like before. You wont take us for granted.

    This time you mean it.

    We are going to make it work.

  • Primary Elections||

    I can help make sure it does work this time. Let me help you get rid of Republicans who do not believe in free market elections.

  • billy-jay||

    Screw Rush Limbaugh.

  • ||

    The only time Rush Limbaugh mentions religion is when he's explicitly pointing out that he doesn't talk about religion on his show.

  • ***||

    Rush has mentioned on a number of occasions that his broadcast contract forbids him from talking about religion. Of course that was before he signed his super-sized salary contract; maybe the terms of his contract have changed.

  • ||

    Matt, I take your point, but I suspect you would vote for Palin if someone pointed a gun at you. Shit, I'd vote for Sheila Jackson Lee if someone pointed a gun at me.

  • Yakoff||

    In Soviet Russia, gun votes for you!

  • clinging to sanity||

    If someone pointed a Sheila Jackson Lee at me, I'd vote with my feet.

  • USA||

    Curiosity got the best of me and I turned the TV on just in time to see the Canadians totally fuck up the climax of their Olympic opening ceremonies. Ha ! Pathetic loser Canada! Why don't you just surrender and join a real country.We'll call you a territory and extract your oil, minerals, and maple syrup, but no vote for you. Upside, your skanky strippers won't need work visas!

  • horny||

    "I turned the TV on just in time to see the Canadians totally fuck up the climax"

    mmm ... bad international porn

  • ||

    Pamela Anderson is Canadian you ingrate. I'll not stand idly by and watch you sully her name. I'll be in my bunk.

  • PIRS||

    I notice there has not been as much publicity about the Winter Olympics this year. I wonder why that is? Perhaps because there is so much else going on in the news like a Marxist in the white house who is trying to ruin our economy?

  • ||

    Shit, they're on about it all the time on NPR. Especially how there's no snow in Vancouver because of Global Warming.

  • iowahawk||

    Me and the lady got baked and watched it in 92" HD, which was fun. The last 15 minutes was creepy-hilarious: Leni Riefenstahl meets Canuck multiculti PC. Triumph of the Canadian Will!

    After that I was literally ROFL during the cauldron fuckup. The looks on Gretzky & Nash's faces were priceless.

  • ||

    Oh, yeah, that's the other thing they're on about at NPR.

    How kind and wonderful the Great White Canadian Father/Mother is to his/her darkskinned children.

  • Hacha Cha||

    a lot of libertarians aren't are starting to be turned off by the tea party stuff because of the neocons and nuts that are infiltrating it. I don't have much hope for the tea partying doing much for the libertarian cause in the long run, just as I didn't have much hope in some sort of liberal-libertarian alliance ending the Iraq war.

  • Hacha Cha||

    fuck! that first setence should read: a lot of libertarians ARE starting to be turned off by the tea party stuff...

  • Hacha Cha||

    *sentence, I give up I'm too stoned to spellcheck.

  • prolefeed||

    Thought for a moment there you were doing a Beatles Number Nine thing with the "aren't are" line ...

  • ||

    What's wrong with "welfare queen"? Is it now considered politically incorrect to criticize women who have five kids with five different fathers and make society pay for raising them?

  • ||

    I believe the politically correct term is "slut". Alternatively: "crack whore".

  • eye of the hold her||

    What defines a slut?

  • Mr. Completely, TotallyObvious||

    Her life experiences.

  • Prosecution rests||

    I want to hear what a woman says. Are you one?

  • ||

    It's OK to criticize, calling her a slut is not - she is irresponsibly expressing her personal liberty with her womb. The question is, what does society owe the helpless whelps?

  • 1st Amendment||

    She is a slut, slut, slut , slut, slut.

  • Prosecution rests||

    1st Amendment, Slut x 5. Are you saying that you are the daddy of five?

  • 1st Amendment||

    Isn't there any place I can go to get hugs anymore?

  • Prosecution rests||

    No talking in time-out

  • Prosecution rests||

    Jennifer, helpless children are are owed help.

  • ||

    "irresponsibly expressing her personal liberty with her womb". Come on now. It may not be PC but that's a damn good definition of a slut.

  • Prosecution rests||

    Is your slut still a slut if she just never conceived or had abortions?

  • ||

    Hey. My BF is a socialist (communist leaning) and he's very much into me. What can I say... Opposites attract.

  • doofus||

    I never really understood the whole Progressive/Libertarian alliance. Not that I saw one where I live. Progressives and Libertarians differ on almost every subject other than war.

    Progressives don't care about civil liberties any more than Conservatives and they certainly aren't fans of limited government.

  • Craig||

    Yeah Yeah. You both enjoyed calling George Bush a dumb monkey. Now when you call the current President that, your former allies declare you a racist.

  • PIRS||

    Insulting, throwing shoes at and protesting Republicans is OK. Insulting, throwing shoes at and protesting Progressive Democrats is not OK.

    See the difference?

  • MNG||

    Way to act like there is not this history of racist equation of minorities and monkeys...

  • PIRS||

    MNG, should my freedoms be curtailed because of the actions of assholes in the past? There was a history within many churches of racism and tacit support of slavery. Does this mean we should accuse people who are members of such churches today, in 2010, of being racist?

    Seriously, monkeys are funny animals that are easy to use for making a point. Is the children's show Bruno and the Bannana Gang racist?

  • PIRS||

    Sorry, the actual title of the show is Bruno & The Banana Bunch.

  • MNG||

    It was common for people to equate monkeys to black folks when they wanted to make a racist expression, so it's hardly unreasonable for someone seeing someone else equating a black man with a monkey today to divine racism behind that. You'r analogy about attributing characteristics of members of organizations due to the actions of those organizations long ago is simply not apt.

  • PIRS||

    It was common for people to equate pyramids to masonry when they wanted to make a Masonic expression, so it's hardly unreasonable for someone seeing someone else using the pyramid as a symbol to divine Masonism behind that.

  • MNG||

    I'm afraid you would need a little more context than that. Anti-Masonic elements never equated the pyramid with people suggesting their inferiority thereby. Racists suggested blacks were monkeys thereby suggesting their inferiority. They did it for a long time, it was a common expression. Of course one could possibly equate a black person with a monkey with no racism being involved in the motive, but given the history there is a pretty strong presumption there, especially when the expression is acknowledged to be derogatory.

    Additionally, the pyramid was a commonly used Masonic symbol. Black people are in fact not monkeys (this may need pointing out to some around here).

  • MNG||

    Do you think two depictions, one of George Bush sloppily devouring a watermelon and another of Obama doing the same have the same meaning? That's naive or foolish in my opinion.

  • PIRS||

    "Do you think two depictions, one of George Bush sloppily devouring a watermelon and another of Obama doing the same have the same meaning? That's naive or foolish in my opinion."

    Since you included the descriptor "sloppilly" I would call both racist.

  • MNG||

    But why PIRS? Why wouldn't you assume that both depictions simplay make comments about W and Obama being lovers of a certain food possessed with bad eating manners?

    As you frankly admit you wouldn't. Why? Literally they are both simply depicting that. Why would you read a racist meaning into the second?

    Is it because of the history of that depiction?

    So do you deny the long history of denigrating black folks by depicting them as monkeys?

  • PIRS||

    The difference between the Watermellon meme and the monkey meme is that monkeys have long been associated with childlike silliness independent of that context.

    Watermellons have not had such a long association outside of that context.

  • MNG||

    Monkeys per se have long been associated with silliness. Black people as monkeys has long been associated with racism towards blacks.

    See, I never said depicting a person as a monkey per se was presumptively racist, I said depicting a black person as a monkey is presumptively racist.

    This can help you with your pyramid confusion. Depicting a person with a pyramid can imply myraid things to folks (an association with FreeMasonry, an association with Egypt, etc).

    You're working at the wrong level of generality as Scalia would say.

  • PIRS||

    "See, I never said depicting a person as a monkey per se was presumptively racist, I said depicting a black person as a monkey is presumptively racist."

    Isn't having a double standard with regards to race - well - racist?

  • PIRS||

    MNG, it should be obvious but I will explicitly explain my meaning since you apparently missed it. My comparison was the Pyramid as a Masonic symbol to the monkey as a racist symbol. It would be absurd for someone to assume a fashionista who is wearing a pyramid necklace in 2010 is a member of a Masonic lodge. It would be equally absurd to assume comparisons of Obama to a monkey similar to ones made of GWB are inherently racist.

    Do you now understand my comparison?

  • MNG||

    I don't think the "Mason-pyramid" meme to be nearly as pronounced or as insidious as the "blacks-monkeys" meme.

    If you stopped the average person on the street a la Jay Leno and asked them about the pyramid-Mason connection they would likely not know wtf you are talking about. But I bet they'd pretty much all know about the monkey-black person meme.

  • PIRS||

    I think you are wrong about the average person not having some idea the Pyramid was once a Masonic symbol. The movie National Treasure and the new Dan Brown book and conspiracy theories that were around long before either and the fact it is on a Dollar Bill should give anyone who grew up in a First World English-Speaking nation a clue about this.

    I also disagree about the number of people who understand the monkey meme. In part, this is due to the fact such topics have been taboo for so long. People simply are not exposed to it any longer. Ask most people who Stepin Fetchit is and see how many correct answers you get.

  • MNG||

    "I also disagree about the number of people who understand the monkey meme."

    {{citation needed}}

    "give anyone who grew up in a First World English-Speaking nation a clue about this."

    {{citation needed}}

    "this is due to the fact such topics have been taboo for so long"

    {{citation needed}}

  • PIRS||

    "I also disagree about the number of people who understand the monkey meme."
    {{citation needed}}

    Krensky, S., & Fallon, J. (2007). Curious George cleans up. Boston: Houghton Mifflin.

    "give anyone who grew up in a First World English-Speaking nation a clue about this."
    {{citation needed}}

    Brown, D. (2009). The lost symbol A novel. New York: Doubleday.

    "this is due to the fact such topics have been taboo for so long"
    {{citation needed}}
    http://www.naacp.org/home/index.htm

  • MNG||

    Did you really just cite Dan Brown for a claim about the number of English speaking people who associate pyramids with the FreeMasons?

    LOL

  • PIRS||

    "Did you really just cite Dan Brown for a claim about the number of English speaking people who associate pyramids with the FreeMasons?"

    Laugh all you want but after you laugh, ask yourself why his book is popular? The fact that such memes ALREADY exist is the reason. Brown did not invent the conspiracy theory associated with Masons.

  • MNG||

    That's ludicrous. Every one I knew who read the book liked it because it revealed supposed "secrets" about thngs like Masons, secrets they were not privy to, not because it confirmed long held beliefs of theirs.

    Even were this not the case with my associates it is at least a plausible explanation for the books popularity (along with numerous other possible reasons; i.e., it was well written for mass appeal, well marketed, etc).

    Besides, citing Brown's book itself to demonstrate the widespread knowledge of the Masonic-pyramid connection is absurd, because you are relying on the books popularity and the book itself is not a reliable source of the evidence of its own popularity! A source indicating the sales of the book would do that.

    You don't know shit about citations, their purpose or how to do them Captian Citation, which may be why I feel I can so casually dismiss your childish "{citation needed}"

  • PIRS||

    "A source indicating the sales of the book would do that."

    Fine, if that is what you want, that is what you will have. By the way, I used AP because the server was having a fit about my including too many links.
    http://www.amazon.com/Books/b/.....ode=549028

  • MNG||

    Oh no, too late for that. You've already demonstrated your profound ignorance of the function of citations by citing Brown's own work to illustrate the popularity of the book (which in turn you bizarrely wanted to be support for your claim, still unverified, that the pyramid-Freemasonry connection is well known in the 'English-speaking world').

  • PIRS||

    "You've already demonstrated your profound ignorance of the function of citations"

    Wrong, it is you who demonstrated a profound lack of a sense of humor.

  • MNG||

    ""this is due to the fact such topics have been taboo for so long"
    {{citation needed}}
    http://www.naacp.org/home/index.htm"

    I figured since you had a boner for citations you had some understanding of what a citation's purpose is. It's supposed to point one towards the origin of a claim and/or ultimately evidence for that claim. If you claim that "people don't know the monkey-blacks" connection meme and I ask for citation you need to give me something with evidence supporting your claim (actually three claims, one that it has been taboo for 'so long' and two that people today don't know of it and three the latter state is due to the former). Linking to the NAACP webpage does this, how?

  • PIRS||

    "Linking to the NAACP webpage does this, how?"

    The NAACP, which was originally a benevolent organization, became an organization that feeds off of claims of racism. They are one of the reasons discussions of such things are now taboo.

    http://www.naacp.org/news/press/2007-04-13-02/index.htm

  • MNG||

    You have no idea what a citation is used for. How does citing the NAACP webpage prove your claim that most people don't know of the monkey-black connection or that the topic is taboo?

    And while we are playing your silly game:

    "They are one of the reasons discussions of such things are now taboo."

    {citation needed}

    Then you have this bizarre cite at the end about NAACP opposition to Don Imus. WTF, are you drunk this early in the morning? This doesn't prove anything about whether people don't know the monkey-black meme, whether it has long been taboo, or what role the NAACP has played in any of the former (if true). It's a press release by the NAACP saying they support dismissal of Imus and want to see better depictions of blacks and women. You're off the rails here Captain Citation! Hang on!

  • PIRS||

    The Don Imus example was merely one of many examples of their pressuring anyone who step a toe out of line as far as they are concerned in race-related issues. That is why I cited them.

  • MNG||

    It's evidence that the NAACP pressures people who they consider step out of line on racial issues? That's nice but we were talking about how widespread the monkey-black connection is and how long it had been taboo. So could you stick to the topic Mr. ADHD (a bit unfair, sadly I know you actually think your cite was on topic, but since I've shown it was not please try again).

  • PIRS||

    The original point was whether or not most people would associate it with being racist or not. I have already cited the popularity of cartoons such as Curious George, Bruno and the Banana Bunch.

    Want more?
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/L.....al_monkeys

    With all of those examples it is easy to see how people would not immediately associate monkeys with racism.

  • MNG||

    Fail buddy, Curious George and Bruno are not depicting black people as monkeys, so it's irrelevant. Do people like depictions of monkeys has nothing to do with are depictions of black people AS monkeys presumptively racist.

  • PIRS||

    "Fail buddy, Curious George and Bruno are not depicting black people as monkeys, so it's irrelevant. Do people like depictions of monkeys has nothing to do with are depictions of black people AS monkeys presumptively racist."

    Oh, your back. Good. Bruno and Curious George take on what artists like to call anthropomorphic characteristics. In other words, they act HUMAN in those and many other programs. Monkeys generally do not play basketball, play the trumpet, do puzzles or play musical chairs with their friends.

    Isn't having a double standard with regards to race - well - racist?

  • jorge||

    Dammit PIRS and MNG, you stupid flat-nosed apes! People call Bush a monkey because he looks like Curious George. Obama doesn't look like Curious George. TOGO

  • Craig||

    Equating people to monkeys now is just a way of saying they are dumb or primative. Since it really was hurtful to blacks, maybe the oh so sensitive Bush haters should have laid off it?

  • MNG||

    Sigh. Excuse the all caps, but one must yell at retarded people sometimes to get points across:

    THE USE OF MONKEY BUSH IMAGERY IS NOT HURTFUL TO BLACKS SINCE BUSH IS WHITE AND DEPICTING WHITE PEOPLE AS MONKEYS DOES NOT HAVE THE SAME HISTORY AND CULTURAL MEANING AS DEPICTING BLACK PEOPLE AS MONKEYS.

    Jesus Christ, how could you not get that from the two dozen post discussion above retardo?

  • Craig||

    I get it moron. I just think its hypocritical and can easily backfire on PC people like you, so why start it in the first place?

  • MNG||

    I'm hardly PC retard. And yes, it strikes me you won't get that, given you're retarded and all...

  • ||

    The Irish used to be equated with monkeys or cro-magnon man. Is it wrong to call a mick a monkey still? Or has that racist meme sunset?

  • PIRS||

    I am of Irish heritage and, only speaking for myself, feel free to compare Chappaquiddick Ted to a monkey. Although, that might be a bit insulting to the monkeys.

  • MNG||

    Surely you are not suggesting equating the Irish with monkeys was a prominent and prevalent a meme as equating blacks with monkeys? You guys are grasping again...

  • PIRS||

    "Srely you are not suggesting equating the Irish with monkeys was a prominent and prevalent a meme as equating blacks with monkeys? You guys are grasping again..."

    Not any more. But they once were. This was fez's whole point.

    http://www.icue.com/portal/site/iCue/flatview/?cuecard=1650

  • Mad Max||

    There is also a history of the New Republic supporting Stalin and faking stories.

    Does that mean people like me should throw their history in their face all the time?

  • PIRS||

    +1

  • William Jefferson Clinton||

    It depends on what the meaning of the word 'is' is. If the--if he--if 'is' means is and never has been, that is not--that is one thing. If it means there is none, that was a completely true statement....

  • MNG||

    Max
    I'm going to make you do the work here. How is this analogous to what we are talking about? An analogy tries to point out how similar two things are, that they are really examples of the same thing or principle. What is that same thing or principle in your example? Since PIRS is cheerleading your comment let him join in here.

  • Mad Max||

    {History of racist monkey comparisons}:{Presumption of racism for monkey jokes about modern politicians like George W. Bush}::{The New Republic's history of Stalinism and fakery}:{Presuming Stalinism and fakery for articles published in the New Republic}

  • Mad Max||

    Here are some racist pictures comparing George W. Bush to a monkey.

    Scroll down this link to find more racism.

  • MNG||

    You're as bad a informal logic as you have often demonstrated at formal logic Max.

    Your bizarre claim about the NR amounts to this: can one presume that an organization is engaged in X because it engaged in X decades ago? Well, of course not given that members of organizations change, their missions change, etc.

    Perhaps you can see the difference between that and: can one presume that the use of depiction X involves the same meaning as the common use of depiction X in the past?

    And remember, depiction X is not "depicting persons as monkeys"; it's "depicting black persons as monkeys."

  • Mad Max||

    What race are you? I would like to know whether it's acceptable to use simian imagery in describing you.

    On the assumption that you're *not* black, I would say that a monkey on a typewriter could write better blog posts than you if you only give it two hours, and that includes banana breaks.

    Throwing out the racism charge in re simian analogies in modern politics makes *as much sense* as insulting Kilgore based on his association with the New Republic.

    Also, bear in mind that many libertarians here frequently equate George W. Bush with President Obama (see a pictorial illustration of this here). So if a monkey is like George W. Bush, and George W. Bush is equivalent to a black man, then simian comparisons invovling George W. Bush must be racist by the principle of transitivity. ؟

  • Mad Max||

    correction: The link is here.

  • MNG||

    "Throwing out the racism charge in re simian analogies in modern politics makes *as much sense* as insulting Kilgore based on his association with the New Republic."

    Repeating the very assertion I've argued is incorrect is hardly a refutation of my argument Max. Please try again.

  • Mad Max||

    'hardly a refutation of my argument'

    You have an argument?

  • MNG||

    11:19
    Do I need to elaborate on it for you to get it?

  • MNG||

    Assuming the sins of the NR decades ago to current NR writer Kilgore is silly because not only do organizations change over decades, but their personnel do.

    Now, how is it as silly to presume that the depiction of a black man as a monkey does not involve the same meaning such depictions have always carried in our society? Has the meaning of the depiction changed between the two points in the same way that the personnel and mission of the NR have changed?

    Analogies 101
    Max, next time I'm charging tuition for such lessons...

  • Mad Max||

    OK, I think I figured out your position.

    The mission and personnel of those who make monkey jokes has not changed at all. The people who make jokes about politicians acting like chimps are the same people who did minstrelsy and racist cartoons back in the day of slavery and Jim Crow. Their agenda remains the same, too.

    I'm glad I figured out your position. ؟

  • Mr. Completely, TotallyObvious||

    MNG has an argument, yes, but not a point.

  • Mad Max||

    may libertarians here *and elsewhere*

  • ||

    Does this mean I'm some percentage of a racist when I call market analysts shaved monkeys? Since I'm sure some percentage are black men or women.

  • PIRS||

    +1

  • Ralph||

    http://www.ERCPinellas.org

    Another academic ignoramus article by those not in the field.

  • MNG||

    "the unattractive aspect of libertarianism that is familiar to readers of Ayn Rand: a Nietzschean disdain for the poor and minorities that tends to dovetail with the atavistic and semi-racist habits of reactionary cultural traditionalists. After all, it is only a few steps from the Tea Party movement's founding "rant"—in which self-described Randian business commentator Rick Santelli blasted "losers" who couldn't pay their mortgages—to populist backlash against all transfer payments of any type, complaints about people "voting for a living" instead of "working for a living," and paranoid conspiracy theories about groups like ACORN."

    Wow, very good insight into the right leaning libertarian mind.

  • PIRS||

    Unless you tell me otherwise I will assume you are being sarcastic.

  • MNG||

    Oh no, dead serious. I've been on H&R longer than you. Many libertarians are well meaning folks concerned with human welfare and liberty who think that government attempts to improve both will end in failure and making things worse. But many here often display a deep desire to see poor and weak people "get there's" and hate the government and various "do-gooders" because they keep that happening sufficiently in their opinion. I usually find that attitude to be what makes a "libertarian" a "right-leaning libertarian."

  • MNG||

    "get theirs"

  • PIRS||

    "But many here often display a deep desire to see poor and weak people "get there's""

    {{citation needed}}

  • MNG||

    With all due politness PIRS, blow me. This happens all the time and I'm not going to "cite" the hundreds of silly postings that confirm it. In fact, not only does it happen but on dozens, literally dozens of occasions I've pointed it out when it does.

  • PIRS||

    No thanks MNG, you are not my type. If you cannot or will not cite an example I will assume your claim is unreliable.

  • MNG||

    "you are not my type"

    {{citation needed}}

  • PIRS||

    "you are not my type"

    {{citation needed}}

    http://reason.com/blog/2010/02.....nt_1570846

  • ||

    hahaha, funny

  • MJ||

    Liberals generally don't like the unremarkable observation that the chronically poor are poor generally due to their own lifestyle choices. Liberals like to believe that some malevonent force in society is the cause of poverty so liberals can run in like heroes on their white horses and save the benighted from their fate.

  • MNG||

    It's far more complex than that. I'm a liberal and I can assure you that romanticizing the poor is a mistake. Foolish and mean decisions are much more common among the poor. I'm very much a believer in the "subculture of poverty."

    However many liberals do think that certain historico-politico-economic forces created that subculture, and we don't revel in the sufferings of the poor even when those sufferings are initiated by their foolish decisions; rather we'd like to ameliorate that suffering.

  • MJ||

    That's nice to say, but most liberal policies to ameliorate the suffering I've seen tend to actually offer perverse incentives for continuing the bad choices, all while condemning all discussion of those choices to politcal incorrectness or racism.

    Utimately, liberals are patronizing enablers of poverty.

  • MNG||

    Now I think that is a somewhat valid argument. Perhaps attempts to amerliorate the sufferings of the poor derived from their own poor choices ultimately lead to worse suffering. That's an argument with an empirical answer. Charles Murray has some very interesting points in favor of this argument pointing to the persistence of poverty rates since the 1970s, but I tend to think the fact that poverty was halved from the inception of big 60's social welfare programs is more telling in opposition to that argument.

    But notice this is a far cry removed from "liberals don't like talking about poor choices of the poor." What we don't like talking about is that the poor who suffer because of their poor choices deserve to suffer, or that there are not historico-politico--economic reasons why some groups seem to have higher rates of poor choices...

  • MNG||

    I mean, let's say people that are poor are poor because of their "poor choices." OK, so why do three times as many black folks make such poor choices? Why did about twice as many white and black folks make such "poor choices" in 1959 (when the poverty rate was 55% for blacks and 20% for whites)?

    See the silliness of ascribing poverty to just "poor choices" apart from other political, economic and historical realities?

  • MNG||

    BTW, before PIRS can get sand in his vagine, here is the data for the empirical claim made in my post directly above (this is about the 50th time I've cited this, part of why I tire of having people ask for "citations"; if you miss classes or come to class late don't expect the teacher to back up and re-teach the freaking class for you).

    http://www.census.gov/hhes/www/poverty/histpov/hstpov2.html

  • PIRS||

    "OK, so why do three times as many black folks make such poor choices? Why did about twice as many white and black folks make such "poor choices" in 1959 (when the poverty rate was 55% for blacks and 20% for whites)?"

    Culture. Culture is simply a term that refers to a collection of ideas. Bad ideas lead to bad choices. Simple as that. (Sowell, 1994)

    Bibliography

    Sowell, T. (1994). Race and culture: A world view. New York: BasicBooks.

  • MNG||

    But that's not much of an answer, because it just leads to the question "why does black culture lead its members to 3 times more poor choices" or "why are three times more blacks than whites part of a culture of bad choices?"

  • PIRS||

    "why are three times more blacks than whites part of a culture of bad choices?"

    The key here is something economists call Time Preference. Time Preference is the preference to make actions now that lead immediate self gratification or that will better enable you to lead a more fulfilling life later. This is the difference between a guy who wins the lottery and blows his money in a few short years and someone who wins the same amount in the lottery and prudently invests it so he can retire early. When the government provides a cushion this can impact that preference. Imagine two 18 year old guys, both equally healthy and equally intelligent. One gets a part time job flipping burgers at McDonalds. The second goes on welfare. At first their lives might be relatively equal. But over time the one working at McDonalds will earn experience and move up to shift manager. Over time, if he applies himself he could become a regional manager. If he continues to apply himself he could be making some real money after a period of 20 years. If the other guy stays on welfare this entire time he will be making far less. This is how the government impacts time preference.

    http://mises.org/humanaction/chap18sec2.asp

  • MNG||

    OK, time preference, whatever. But you still haven't answered the question at all, see, because why do blacks have three times the time preference problems whites have (the black poverty rate is currently 3 times the whites) and why was there twice as many people having time preference problems in 1959 than now (see historical poverty rates, twice as high for both whites and blacks in 1959)?

  • PIRS||

    "why do blacks have three times the time preference problems whites have (the black poverty rate is currently 3 times the whites) and why was there twice as many people having time preference problems in 1959 than now"

    Governmental interference. Part of the problem (we might agree on this one) is the war on drugs. How does this impact time preference you ask? Simple, by lowering average life expectancies. If you do not see yourself as living to 105 you might well be less willing to plan for a future that might never come. At the same time this makes their neighborhoods less attractive to potential businesses. Who wants to open a store in a war zone? The welfare state is also part of the problem. [This greatly increased after LBJ and the Great Society]. My McDonalds example is one aspect of this. Without the welfare state he would have earned work experience. Banking regulations are another part of the problem. These regulations make it harder to open banks so the idea of a "mom and pop" bank is unheard of. This decreases banking competition and thus makes them less available to the poor.

  • MNG||

    Governmental interefernce doesn't help, because then you have to explain why the presence of governmental interference causes three times more blacks than whites to fall into poverty.

    Besides the idea that government intereference is the cause of our poverty is laughable considering there was twice as many people in poverty in 1959 when government interference was much less than today.

  • PIRS||

    "Governmental interefernce doesn't help, because then you have to explain why the presence of governmental interference causes three times more blacks than whites to fall into poverty."

    Because of the original starting points.

    "Besides the idea that government intereference is the cause of our poverty is laughable considering there was twice as many people in poverty in 1959 when government interference was much less than today."

    Technological improvements explain why, despite governmental interference, lifestyles have improved.

  • MJ||

    "Everybody has asked the question. . ."What shall we do with the Negro?" I have had but one answer from the beginning. Do nothing with us! Your doing with us has already played the mischief with us. Do nothing with us! If the apples will not remain on the tree of their own strength, if they are wormeaten at the core, if they are early ripe and disposed to fall, let them fall! I am not for tying or fastening them on the tree in any way, except by nature's plan, and if they will not stay there, let them fall. And if the Negro cannot stand on his own legs, let him fall also. All I ask is, give him a chance to stand on his own legs! Let him alone!"

    --Frederick Douglass

    A lot problems are caused by not letting people fail because it would be bad for their race.

  • .||

    OK, so why do three times as many black folks make such poor choices?

    Maybe this has something to do with it?

  • PIRS||

    "OK, so why do three times as many black folks make such poor choices?"

    It may have something to do with the horrible government-run school systems that a disproportionate number of them attend. You can thank the NEA for simultaneously opposing vouchers and making it more difficult to fire incompetent teachers.

  • MJ||

    If you are suffering largely because of your own bad choices, how is that suffering undeserved?

    Not wanting to talk about that, in fact, angrily protesting any discussion of that while promoting policies that reenforce the dysfunctional poverty subculture does not end that subculture, it just perpetuates it. Blaming historical reasons (which largely no longer exist) for why a group started poorer than than average does nothing than offer an excuse for why the poverty culture they have fallen into cannot be changed.

  • MNG||

    "If you are suffering largely because of your own bad choices, how is that suffering undeserved?"

    Well, PIRS was looking for a cite of someone here who felt the suffering of the poor and minorities was deserved and now all he has to do is look below his own freaking post. See how long that took (and oh yes MJ was one of the ones I was thinking of all along, he didn't dissapoint).

    "Blaming historical reasons (which largely no longer exist) for why a group started poorer than than average does nothing" EXCEPT offer an explanation. Oh, and it certainly breaks up the "deserved" meme now doesn't it (as the "original starting points" of poverty subcultures are force and fraud, i.e., slavery and Jim Crow, which certainly are not the fault of the later practicioner of the culture these gave rise to...

  • PIRS||

    "Well, PIRS was looking for a cite of someone here who felt the suffering of the poor and minorities was deserved and now all he has to do is look below his own freaking post."

    Apparently you completely missed the conjunction "if". That is a HUGE if.

  • MJ||

    The starting point for taking control of one's life and changing one's circumstances is to own your decisions and accept responsibility for the consequences. Suggesting that the poor and minorities cannot do this because of the burdens placed on them by history condemns them permanently by telling them they have no capability to change for the better. You are exactly demonstrating the type of patronizing attitude behind the policies that infantalizes the poor and encourages the culture of poverty.

    You may have great compassion for the poor and miniorities, MNG, but you have no respect for them as competent persons.

  • Chad||

    No, liberals believe it is a complex interaction of choices and social constructs that create and maintain poverty.

    Libertarians just think "poverty=lazy=bad", and wash their hands of the affair.

  • MNG||

    +1

  • ||

    MNG-

    You usually do not praise such nuance free assessments.

  • ||

    No, we don't all think that's the case. That's what you think we all think.

  • ^||

    To a liberal, an accusation is reality.

  • ||

    My problem is that the left doesn't seem to want to alleviate poverty so much as create equality. Yes, there is a difference. Theoretically, we could provide subsistence services to the people who absolutely need them and let the rest of society succeed by its own merit, but the left seems far more concerned with supporting a "middle class" (the true welfare class in my opinion, as most government jobs are supposed to define "middle class" quality of life, and the middle class benefits the most from government services that it could technically pay for out of its own pocket) with fake jobs and guarantees so they don't ever have to move out of that suburban household and live in an apartment. They're not so much 14concerned with the soup kitchens as they are with mortgages.

    Even as a libertarian, I could still see see the government being necessary to provide services for the poorest of the poor, but we all know that that is not what liberalism is all about.

    Anyway, wanting to help people is one thing, but armed theft of property hardly makes the world a better place. Two wrongs don't make a right.

  • jj||

    >Theoretically, we could provide subsistence services to the people who absolutely need them and let the rest of society succeed by its own merit, but the left seems far more concerned with supporting a "middle class" (the true welfare class in my opinion

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    That's the problem with both cons and libs - they make things more complex than they need to be. With lots of government, of course.

  • ||

    Go fuck yourself, MNG. I've been around here for a long time too and there are no right leaning libertarians that take delight in anybody's misfortion except for statist assholes like yourself.

  • ||

    I call bullshit. There's a fundamental vein of self reliance and competition within the libertarian sphere. There is no "get theirs" there's simple a don't take mine to give to others. Do you earn your position in life? Most likely. Do good or bad events out of individual control influence that position? Sure. The difference isn't where you are, but what you do when you're there. Do you take food stamps for half your life or do you take them and feel shame for the inability to support yourself and strive to fix that. Your simplistic "get there's[sic]" comment is hyper simplistic in what appears to be an attempt to draw delineate between not wanting to be coerced into caring and being vindictive; it also ignores everything from basic micro economics and motivation, history of the libertarian movement, and common sense.

    Forcing someone to give their property to another is not compassion, it's theft. Opposing this coercion is not vindictive against the recipient, it's disdain of the coercion. The bleeding heart loves nothing more than the rags to riches story, the libertarian loves the same story sans the theft from one for the benefit of another.

  • OMG||

    All I can say about liberals making these crazy comments are "Pot meet Kettle"

    Read the numberless rants of Tony and Chad about how all of us here have to give up our McMansions and SUVs, suck it up and pay up our fair share. That seems a hell of a lot more like wishing someone else would "get their's" then the great majority of libertarians who don't give a fuck what you want to do with your own life, time and property as long as you just leave me the hell alone.

  • MNG||

    "Do you earn your position in life? Most likely. Do good or bad events out of individual control influence that position? Sure."

    And the second point doesn't cause some problems for the first? Cuz you've got a funny idea of "earn" if that's the case.

  • ||

    Sitting idol in one position is not earning. Keep reading, the context is there, you either chose to read it out of context or ignored the context to make a weak rebuttal.

    The difference isn't where you are, but what you do when you're there.

  • OMG||

    By definition, I would assume the "poor" being "poor" have already (unfortunately) "got theirs'". Maybe I haven't been perusing H&R long enough, but I've had libertarian beliefs for most of my adult life, and in my travels most libertarians I meet don't hate the poor, don't wish ill on anyone except for those who would steal their liberty.

  • ||

    That anyone would take that extraordinarily biased rant as an insight into anything reveals more about themselves than any libertarian, no matter which way said libertarian leans.

  • ||

    OK looks like this might be a lot of fun. LOL

    Jess
    www.isp-logging.net.tc

  • Maverick||

    Anon the Mighty has spoken. LOL.

  • MJ||

    Yikes, Google's Olympic Themed logo today features a luger. Intentional or bad timing?

  • Ska||

    I was wondering that, too.

  • MNG||

    I've always found the ACORN hate to be amusing as all get out. Way before the O'Keefe thing I said many times on H&R that I assumed ACORN was involved in corruption. You don't need to imagine any left wing conspiracy to assume that if you pay people to colelct signatures, especially per signature you will have people forging signatures. Likewise I assumed they were wasting any government contract money they get, most government contractees do (look at all the reports of defense contractors doing this with piles more money than ACORN was getting). When they cut ACORN off of the public teat I thought it was a good thing.

    Having said that ACORN, in any situation, is just mighty small potatoes. It just follows from the logic that a community organizing association is simply not going to be the "heavy" in any story of the messy rent-seeking and corrpution involved in our government. They just don't have the resources to be the main heavy.

    So why the intensely focused hate from the right towards ACORN? Well I have to say I think the fact that they are so loud in claiming their mission of focusing on helping blacks and the poor to be part of the origin of such intense and constant animus.

    As I've long said, many libertarians think government and non-profit drives to help blacks and poor people will be ultimately damaging, and so they oppose them. But many libertarians are concerned these drives will actually succeed, and that's why they oppose them.

  • PIRS||

    "But many libertarians are concerned these drives will actually succeed, and that's why they oppose them."

    {{citation needed}}

  • Pedantula||

    I don't get you MNG! On one hand you seem to understand a number of commonly misunderstood things, like how incentives change behavior, how rent-seeking differs from real creation of value, etc.

    But on the other, you don't hesitate to dip your quill in motive fallacies, psychological speculation, and to build whole posts around infuriatingly non-falsifiable statements, etc.

    It's really an odd mix of knowledge and ignorance you've got there...

  • MNG||

    I can see you're point. Considering that even hard-core racists know not to use overtly racist comments one has to either do some infering of motives and mind-sets or believe that no racists exist. I try to be careful about that, but years of debating with many different people on this blog have involved a slow and steady accumulation of comments, focuses, etc. (this is why I find PIRS request for citation for my conclusion to be silly btw), by many posters that have led me make that inference. Take something like the focus on ACORN over and above other much worse examples of rent-seeking and corruption, multiply that by dozens of issues and thousands of debates here on H&R and yes I have concluded that some posters on here are racist and revel in the suffering of the poor and the weak.

    Hell, even one of the most thoughtful posters here, fluffy, once told me straight up that he longed for a world in which the stupid suffered more for their mistakes and the clever propsered more.

    Would you deny that the response of at least some here to stories about complaints of the suffering of the poor and weak is worse than even callous indifference ("life ain't fair so stop whining" is a commone sentiment) but even go so far as to express the sentiment that "they made their bed now who are they to whine about it?"

  • MNG||

    Pedantula

    Remember I kicked this all off with this line:

    "Many libertarians are well meaning folks concerned with human welfare and liberty who think that government attempts to improve both will end in failure and making things worse."

    And I meant it. I gain a lot from libertarian thought. Most liberals have a simplistic view of libertarians, thinking of them just as evil conservatives. I don't make that mistake.

    But I also don't make the opposite mistake of assuming that many people don't find in libertarianism a cover for their racist and/or anti-poor attitudes. Just like I assume that many liberals find in liberalism a cover for authoritarianism (curious, when you accuse me of psychological speculation and motive fallacies would you agree such charges must fall equally on the many comments on H&& to the effect that "liberals don't really care about the poor/minorities/equality/civil rights etc., they 'really' care about control/statistm/etc"?), many conservatives find in conservatism cover for defense of the status quo, etc.

  • Pedantula||

    I'm not saying that the charge of racism is untrue, just that it's unfounded, untestable, and irrelevant, and the only thing it adds to the discussion is tension.

    If someone says they are disgusted by ACORN's corruption, then all you need to know is whether or not ACORN is actually corrupt. Of course its fair to ask: "What about Haliburton, are you also disgusted by that?"

    An honest person (especially an honest libertarian) will say yes. A dishonest or inconsistent person may say no, and if they do, don't hesitate to challenge them.

    But even in that case you still have not collected any evidence for racism - which is, let us never forget - a serious and upsetting charge.

    More than that: when a racist points out that ACORN is corrupt, even he deserves to be judged on the merits of his statement. It is still unfair to switch the conversation to a referendum on his motives.

  • RCTL||

    MNG, "but years of debating with many different people on this blog have involved a slow and steady accumulation of comments, focuses...by many posters that have led me make that inference...dozens of issues and thousands of debates here on H&R and yes I have concluded that some posters on here are racist and revel in the suffering of the poor and the weak." That conclusion took you years? Did you think the word colored referenced their crayola boxes?

  • Maverick||

    Dude, every time I see your handle, I think of MGMT, and they rock . . . you don't. If any of you other other commenters have waded through his steaming pile of earnest bullshit to reach this post, here's a reward. Indie Rokkers

  • MNG||

    It's short for Mr. Nice Guy newbie. And one can only guess at the level of your intellect and learnedness when you muster no counter-argument to anything I've said but instead feel the need to simply post your conclusion it is "bullshit."

  • Maverick||

    Dear Tool Bag,

    Why should I counter-argue? Nobody has the time to sift through all of your garbage:

    I'm not going to "cite" the hundreds of silly death-from-old-age-inducing postings that [you post] to confirm it.

    Allso, I figur'd me afew things n skool. But prolly kood've lurned more frum a smrt soceeoligist doctor azhole lek u.

  • Dumpster Diver||

    Yeah, his garbage is full of contradictions. Not to mention the smell . . .

  • robc||

    Tony, Chad, MNG.....I would trade all 3 to get joe back.

  • MNG||

    robc's just mad because I call him out on his mad, monstrous, anti-human Pharisee style ethics. In his mind man was made for the Sabbath, not the Sabbath for man (abstract rules trump actual human conditions).

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Sabbath just hasn't been the same since Ozzy left.

  • ||

    Hear, hear!

    Joe, why have you forsaken us?

  • Almanian||

    Yaaaaaaaaaaaaaawn. MNG and Tony bore me.

  • ||

    Tony, Chad, MNG.....I would trade all 3 to get joe back.

    Wow, this must be a MONUMENTAL clusterfuck.

  • ||

    DESERT ISLAND, BITCHEZ!!!

    *sings*

    a three hour tour

    three hour tour......

  • ||

    Google's Olympic Themed logo today features a luger. Intentional or bad timing?

    Since there are no "X"s on his eyes, I'll go with bad timing.

  • ||

    Google's Olympic Themed logo today features a luger. Intentional or bad timing?

    Who'd have thought a barely controlled slide down an icy slope feet first at 70 mph could be dangerous?

    I'll bet neither his luge nor the course had warning decals on them. Time to call out the tort lawyer brigade.

  • MJ||

    I think the tort lawyers will be going after the unpadded metal pole the man hit after jumping the track that every newsreader I heard mentioned about that incident.

  • ||

    Dude, if the Google logo ever featured a real Luger, that would be flat out awesome.

  • A Conservative Teacher||

    Libertarians are idiots. Although, I am a libertarian (lowercase 'l'). Go figure- I guess when you start buying into the hope and change rhetoric and voting liberal Democrat, you lose all your sense of right and wrong. Libertarians are wrong on supporting third parties, they are wrong on their views on the War on Terror, and they are wrong on many issues of morality. And they were wrong to support Democrats. Idiots.

  • @||

    Self-loathing much?

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Another idiotic "third parties suck" post. Haven't seen those since the last time I lurked over at FreeRepublic.

    Oh, wait, your post was probably cut'n'pasted from there. Why bother typing when propaganda is just a click away?

    BTW, morality isn't the purview of government. But you know that, deep down, even if you can't bring yourself to admit it.

  • zoltan||

    Keep sucking up taxpayer monies for your pension, TEACHER.

  • zoltan||

    Keep sucking up taxpayer monies for your pension, TEACHER.

  • MJ||

    The Liberaltarian walk of shame just gets worse and worse, don't it

  • ||

    FUCK OFF, SLAVER.

  • ||

    Google's main page has a snowboarder on it, now.

    *scratches chin*

  • ||

    Olympic Establishment denies responsibility, pins blame on athlete.

    *makes astounded face*

  • Evil Teabagger||

    Liberals dislike libertarians because they don't understand them and can't easily classify them. Despite all their please for diversity and understanding, hardcore liberals, like their conservative counterparts, are scared what they don't really understand.

  • @||

    In other words, ignorance is self-important bliss?

  • Evil Teabagger||

    They don't seem too blissful right now. The left wants to think anyone who dislikes their/Obama's agenda has been brainwashed by Glenn Beck. However, lots of independents, including libertarians, don't like GB or Sarah Palin either. This deeply confuses many liberals.

  • Solanum||

    50 new comments since I last checked in and I have no clue where they're at. Gotta love threaded comments.

  • Observer||

    Ignore all the indented, left-justified stuff and you'll be fine.

  • RCTL||

    It's a bitch fight and very entertaining at that.

  • ||

    Let me guess: MaunderingNannyGoat is up there somewhere, excreting one of his Dickensian "Tiny Tim" hypotheticals which allows him to feel good about himself while advocating violent forcible wealth redistribution.

  • ||

    Libertarians never flocked to Obama as much as they ran from Bush and the GOP, and now that Obama has shown his true colors regarding a change to Marxism, libertarians have only the 19th century libertarian Democrats to look to, those who followed Jefferson and Madison. It is a grand awakening of the old Democrats who wil rise out of both the Democratic and Republican Parties and support those who support them. See The Changing Face of Democrats on Amazon and claysamerica.com.

  • zoltan||

    LOL, You wish.

  • Almanian||

    Good evening, P Brooks! I see you came back to see the smoldering wreck as well. TTFN!

  • ||

    Oh well. Libertarians may have ended up voting for candidates who will quadruple the national debt, vastly expand regulation and oversight of government in healthcare, labor, and energy use, and add another couple pillars to the welfare state.

    But at least they held firm on really important issues like having elected officials who don't talk about Jesus so much.

  • SIV||

    It's all about the gay marriage.

  • ||

    To see just what a great political analyst Ed Kilgore is see this article from 1999:

    http://www.dlc.org/ndol_ci.cfm.....;subid=157

    --in which he says that the GOP is committing suicide by not jumping on the gun control bandwagon. :)

  • ||

    "I see rightward moving libertarian."

    I agree. I see the conservatives in the tea party movement trying to avoid social issues and stick to econ. Then again, I think the line about conservatives trying to impose values was always a lefty exaggeration... so in part it is simply smart politics for them to avoid the association (it’s a rope-a-dope move) and/or they'd be happy sticking with an agenda more based on econ.

  • OMG||

    I think an argument can be made that conservatives have moved more toward libertarianism in the last 30 years on social issues. Not necessarily in their beliefs but in what they think government should intrude on. So when you listen to conservative commentators (or just speak to some), I think, for instance, many would still not approve of homosexuality (in terms of personal beliefs) but would not believe that it's the government's business to do anything about it. At least that is a step in the right direction.

    I think, unfortunately, that during the same time, in the expansion of the federal government and state powers they have moved in the opposite direction of liberty (see expansions of government programs under Bush I & II). We are a long way away from the days that Republicans wanted to eliminate the Dept of Education.

    Liberals on the other hand, have gone out right socialist and statist. How liberals can look themselves in the mirror and argue against the holding in Citizens United strikes me as bizarre (a case in which, the all seem to forget, the ACLU even supports the decision). What happened to the days when liberals were for unconditional expansion of more speech, the days when the answer to "wrong" speech wasn't to shut it down, but to counter it with a better argument (and don't give me the bullshit of we can't match corporate money - unions spent almost $1B in the last election cycle, and there are many of rich liberals like Soros funding the liberal side).

  • ||

    Oh Sweet Jesus! Please tell me the writer didn't just use "Bushitler" in a non-ironic fashion. The government is going to run every damn thing in the country under Obama if we don't stop him and the best guys we can find to write articles from a libertarian perspective are still taking potshots at Bush. Un-frickin-believable.

    Bush had a lot of faults but 50 million people have a chance at freedom now thanks to him. To compare him to Hitler who tried to enslave a continent is the ridiculous sort of hyperbole that makes sensible people just shake their heads at libertarianism. It smacks of the same nuttiness that infects the truthers and birthers. How is that BDS workin' out for you Matt? That Obama is a real improvement ain't he? Sure fixed all of those terrible, terrible rights violations the Bush boys engaged in against the terrorists didn't he? And it only cost a few trillion dollars to get exactly the same results. Who could have ever predicted such a thing?

    But still, we just have to get that dig in there to prove how even-handed we are. Even though our BDS has brought the Republic to the point of collapse under the Precedent we just can't admit that we were sold a bill of goods about ol' chimpy and that what he did was no different than what any president before him did when at war... and was far more restrained than most. Yeah, prescription drugs were bad but he tried to get Congress to fix the mortgage mess before it exploded and he proposed privatizing social security.

    And just what the hell did Palin ever do to any libertarian? "Ten foot tongs" indeed. Why? She is religious and pro-life. We tend to be pro-choice but that is about it. She isn't going to go around bankrupting and bailing out entire industries on a whim. She understands the need for energy production and is probably the best we can get to stand up to the global warming cultists. I am an atheist myself but it is beyond me why she scares people who should know better. What liberties do you think she is going to violate that the other choices won't?

    I don't care if she has the IQ of an eggplant. Better an idiot leading us in the right direction than a putative genius driving us over a cliff. Hell, everyone says Obama is a genius but here we are a year into his presidency and we haven't seen any evidence of it yet. His ignorance, stupidity and incompetence are the only things holding the Republic together right now because otherwise we would be past the point of no return.

  • ||

    Agree 100%.

    On the abortion thing, too many libertarians are so caught up concerns about those icky christians they overlook the fact that there are substantial secular, even science-based arguments against abortion, or at least for policies which reduce/discourage abortions at the margin. I would think libertarians in the pro-choice camp would at least agree that laws forcing doctors to collude in hiding information from the parents of younger minors would be a starting point.

  • A Conservative Teacher||

    Third parties 'don't suck'. It's just that here in America, we have a two party system. Those are the simple facts- check out my post "US Has Two Party System- Deal With It and Vote Republican". Take off your tin hats, libertarians, and join the party- adults play at Republican and Democrat. That's how you should be voting. And it is increasingly becoming clear (hopefully) which party fits more closely (although not perfectly) with the libertarian vision of government.

    Libertarians greatest impact on the last election was helping to put Al Fraken in office by not voting for the Republican on the ballot. Good move guys!

  • Warty||

    Just shut the fuck up.

  • Tony||

    Republicans destroyed the economy, started a bullshit war on lies, don't believe in facts, and tortured people. What about that says "freedom" to you?

  • Mr. FIFY||

    And Democrats played no part in any of the above... right, Tony?

    The "we're good and they're bad" meme only gets it half-right.

  • libertybill||

    Oh yes the typical blame the Third Party argument from the butthurt conservative. Pardon us if we are sick of statism from both sides.

  • ||

    Sigh. Another writer writing about how all this is no news at all. Hey, Welch, saying 'everybody sucks but me' doesn't accomplish anything. You look no better than people who talk to themselves on the street.

  • Thucydides||

    True Libertarian government and society may be a lot closer than anyone thinks.

    The bankruptcy of Federal guarantee programs may begin as early as 2016, and State and municipal governments may go under even earlier. The overhanging Federal debt ensures a rapid chain reaction of economic failures with no more ability to backstop the collapse with further issuing of Federal paper or printing of money (which will already resemble monopoly money by that point).

    Of course the collapse of Federal and State programs and the effective end of bureaucracy will be a very trying time, and it certainly will answer the question of "what happens after you draw the sign of the dollar in the air?". There is a great deal of risk that the answer in a lot of places (particularly Blue States and within the Urban areas dominated for generations by Democrats) will be the masses following "the man on the white horse" for salvation, completing the cycle of socialism>fascism>autocracy.

    Tea partiers represent the self reliant threads of American society and they have demonstrated the will and ability to organize and execute plans. They have no need of intrusive governments or bureaucracies, and will do just fine after the fall.

  • OMG||

    Nice thought but your kidding yourself. When the shit hits the fan, most people will willingly put the chains on. Sure the TARP is unpopular now (I hated it from its first mention), but the reason why the Republicans caved the second time around wasn't because the bill got any better but because people had the shit scared out of them and were blaming the Republicans for being obstructionist.

    No, I'm sorry to say, but I'm fairly sure that when we have our Greece moment, the country will fall for "hope & change" again, book, line and sinker.

  • ||

    Wow, actually makes sense when you think about it.

    Jess
    www.isp-logging.net.tc

  • ||

    What a worthless article. What a scumbag.

  • Charles Collins||

    Duh. Libertarians have always been part of the conservative coalition forged by the Buckleyites. Conservatives in the US are primarily anti-statist. The few areas where they believe in state intervention (pornography and abortion) aren't going to change any time soon.

    I think too many Libertarians got caught up in the anti-religious fervor which blew up around Bush, and forgot how little it really changed anything.

  • nj||

    I guess you missed that whole war thing

  • PIRS||

    "and forgot how little it really changed anything."

    I will remember that next time I am taking my shoes off at the arport.

  • OMG||

    This whole thread has been largely meaningless. A whole lot of "I know you are but what am I" by conservatives against libertarians, libertarians against nativists, everyone against MNG and MNG against everyone.

    What good does any of this do? Except for as another type of online time waster. I'm not saying all comments are useless (although I freely admit many of mine are, maybe this one included) - when some real constitutional discussion goes on or discussing implications of policy, etc.

    But so much of this thread seems to be - "your an ass" - "no, your an ass and we're going to take you toys away" "na, na, nana, na"

  • OMG||

    The reality is that Tony, Chad and MNG may not win the arguments, but they're winning (and will increasingly win) the war. We are getting farther away from the Constitution and limited government everyday. Corporations are at the government teat more than they have ever been. People have an expectation of ever more from the government with no desire to pay for it themselves (although they are perfectly happy to pick their neighbors pocket through Washington), and politicians are willfully blind to the shit storm that is guaranteed on its way through the cloud seeding of reckless policies of ignoring the state and federal tsunami of unfunded entitlement liabilities, Fed expansion of its balance sheet that has basically BOUGHT the entire existing mortgage market, and the collapse of entrepreneurial spirit in this country as rational people decide that the game is rigged so why bother trying to start and grow business or direct their energies to cozying up to our government masters

  • OMG||

    FUCK

  • James Solbakken||

    "Liberaltarian" was always bullshit.

    "Libertarians," for all their libertine faults, are fellow children of John Locke, along with Adams, Jefferson, & Madison.

    Liberals, on the other hand, are nothing but Marxists who believe in abolishing private property by stealing it.

    See, it's all that simple.

    James Solbakken

  • ||

    Boo Hoo PIRS. Just think what those around you have to put up with.

  • ||

    The strength of the TP movement is that you can see what you want in it. However, there can be no doubt that it is the only "party" that has libertarian tendencies. Forget Tancredo. I see no evidence that this idiot represents anything resembling the heart of the TP people. And I'm totally fine with Palin as a promoter of libertarian thought (as long as she doesn't run for office). She has that religious faith thing that so appeals to many, but doesn't embrace it as a way of governing. So she leads the religious right (and the GOP) back to libertarian thought. In this regard, and as a secularist, I say she's a godsend (forgive the oxymoron).

  • ||

    You liberal writers are always calling Libertarians racist. When all we want is the government to follow the constitution. That constitution gives all of us the freedom we need to enjoy life. What is racist about that?

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    It's only 2/5th racist.

  • ||

    Welch's efforts to separate himself from the knuckle-dragging liberal caricature of 'conservatives' is needlessly insulting to to people who probably agree with him 75%, as well as revealing (in a not very flattering way). The implied bashing of conservatives as racists was particularly insulting -- and shamelessly sucking up to the cryptomarxists.

    Not thinking Palin is up to the job of Prez is fine, but to dismiss ACORN-govt corruption is absurd. The 'welfare queen' bit? Fuck off -- that shit really exists. My sister the 25+ ear social worker and my wife the 20year public school teacher can vouch for it.

    Agree with other comments about the problem corporations pose for libertarians (if they're honest) -- support for free markets too often becomes apologies and carte blanche for crooked corporations. The very notions of limited liability and 'incorporation' for legal personhood are entirely inventions and grants of the *state*. One can make a good argument that corporations letting capital be accumulated in larger amounts has had great positive effects on the human race's material prosperity, but that is *not* 100% free market. If a libertarian blesses the idea of corporations, then he *has* to assume responsibility in the form of at least some minimal regulatory power to manage the market distortions.

  • ||

    I had one person compliment me as a libertarian for "at least having a consistent philosophy". I've always found objectivism's disdain for the poor and downtrodden to be one of the things I find most stimulating about it. But that's just me. As to Nietzsche, well, I guess I'm going to have to reread Thus Spake Zarathustra because I didn't read anything even remotely like a disdain for the downtrodden. Didn't Zarathustra live in a CAVE for like X number of years? He'd be one of the first ones in the public option, suffering from the pre-existing condition known as "cave rot".

  • vulcanhammer||

    The liberal/libertarian "alliance" was a non-starter for very fundamental reasons:

    http://www.vulcanhammer.org/20.....-together/

  • ||

    Of course you wouldn't voe for Scarah paleolithic. Libertarians are not theocrats. And also they have brains.

  • ||

    Where did Ayn Rand or libertarians ever speak disdainfully of minorities?

  • JPM77||

    Liberals aren't that into us? oh well... I think what both sides of the political spectrum really fail to realize is that the moderate and independent middle of this country tends to lean libertarian through social liberalism and fiscal conservatism, even if many of them don't realize it as a formal identified. So when the Republicans crusade to the far right to placate their base, they alienate us, along with much of the middle of the country. When the Democrats push too far left to give their base what they crave, they alienate us as well.

    But extremes don't tend to win general elections. Part of the screwed up aspect of our two party system is that you need to get by your base in the primaries, but you have to have much broader appeal for the general election. So a candidate that's too far out to either extreme placating their base thankfully has to pass by the moderate and independent middle before they can grab power more broadly. So the game theory indicates moving to the middle is a better strategy.

    So the liberals are ready to break off from us? So long... Good luck winning elections without us. We're that broad and fickle middle 1/3 of the country you can't win without, more than ready to desert you if you don't govern responsibly and that means not letting your extremist base run the show. This is why we and the independents are running away from the Democrats right now. We taught the Republicans a lesson in 2006 & 2008 too, but they seem to be learning at least, and are trying to hand us a bit of an olive branch. Still, if they keep pushing crap like Palin and Tancredo, they aren't ever going to really get us on board.

    But the game is still relatively the same... both sides need us to win, we swing elections.

  • Champion||

    To the author,

    If you had read this as a speech in a salon or a bar, I would have bought you a drink.

  • BeesInTheBrain||

    I'm not certail it is a big loss if liberal politicians stop lieing during elections to gain "libertarian" votes.

  • Mike ||

    The official libertarian movement is not very libertarian either. It's basically "big government libertarianism" - a shill for big business interests. What sort of "libertarian" movement goes to the mat to fight for welfare for illegal immigrants? The sort of libertarian movement we have here in America. The idiotic swipe a Tancredo, one of the most fiscally conservative Congressmen in memory, illustrates the problem.

  • Mike ||

    Forget Tancredo. I see no evidence that this idiot represents anything resembling the heart of the TP people. And I'm totally fine with Palin as a promoter of libertarian thought (as long as she doesn't run for office). She has that religious faith thing that so appeals to many, but doesn't embrace it as a way of governing. So she leads the religious right (and the GOP) back to libertarian thought. In this regard, and as a secularist, I say she's a godsend (forgive the oxymoron).


    Again, that illustrates the problem. The modern "libertarian" movement is not defined by opposition to the state. It defines itself by its hostility towards religion. It's more more socially liberal than it is fiscally conservative, as its dismissive reaction towards Tancredo shows.

  • Chad||

    Do libertarians actually think their was some sort of alliance between progressives and themselves? WTF? Libertarians are more of an opposite of progressives than conservatives.

  • Hobo Chang Ba||

    Bullshit. Libertarianism is divided into two quadrants - conservative/paleolibertarians/Objectivists and classical liberals/left-libertarians. Classical liberals were progressives, advocating for naturally progressive tax rates (via land value taxes), entrepreneurship as meritocracy over aristocracy, equality in the eyes of the law and even public education (from the perspective that it is necessary to break the cycle of poverty and thus avoid reliance on government handouts.) Many libertarians are highly critical of corporations as inefficient, government-created artificial legal entities.

    Moreover, I would criticize 90% of the policies of the modern Left, especially environmentalism and the Keynesian devaluation of the currency as being economically regressive, hurting the poor. This is primarily because most leftists don't understand free market economics. For instance, regulation is not a big deal for the wealthy who can hire accountants and lawyers - unlike the small business. I'd say also that I'm far more socially open-minded than the average leftist when it comes to things like gay rights and Native American rights.

    The reality is that the right-libertarians have long been much more vocal than left-libertarians because the right-libertarians are more willing to ally themselves with "limited government conservatives" in the political apparatus who just play them along until they get into power, whereas left-libertarians have no modern political outlet whatsoever. We don't even really an equivalent to Lew Rockwell, the Mises Institute or The Cato Institute. Reason kind of cuts down the middle. The mainstream Left doesn't cater to us at all, the radical Left is far too attached to the power of the state and the lefty anarchists aren't really interested in real political ends besides smashing the windows of poor Korean shop owners. There's plenty of room for a resurgence of classical liberalism, as it could easily beat both the mainstream Left and the mainstream Right at their own game (by being actually progressive while actually limiting government).

    "Progressive" by definition does not mean an advocate for more government - it means a proponent for increased meritocracy, social and economic equality and progress, especially for the poor and minorities. By making natural entrepreneurship easier, ending corporate welfare that stems from big government and supporting equality and fair treatment for all in the eyes of the law, libertarians are THE true progressives and meritocrats.

  • ||

    The thesis is that neither liberterians nor progressisves are social conservatives. Or if they are, they are willing to let people do their own thing. Second, that economically they are similar because progressives also believe in allowing the minimum government intervention required for people to be free.

    It's the second where the concepts of freedom and intervention are radically different.

    For instance, Libertarians are more likely to see single payer as government intervention restricting freedom in whatever way. Progressives see it as a way to increase freedom by making people not afraid to take individual risks in other ways because of the safety net.

    So Libertarians see freedom as an absolute, while progressives see it as a relative term, I think. At least, that's how I've understood it.

  • ||

    "What I do care about, regardless of who's president, is human freedom and prosperity"

    Matt may be a little different, but I have the very strong sense that Reason libertarians are fairly comfortable with the accommodationist stance they have toward the Fox crowd. They seem to embrace Glen Reynolds, for example, complete with his passive aggressive linking against the anti-torture crowd.

    Your outrage is saved for Kelo, small increases in tax rates, gun laws, etc, and if that's where you locate the critical debates around human freedom then IMO libertarians have no business claiming to be defenders of it.

    Oh look, there's a fawning Nick Gillespie quote of Reynolds, about the Tea Party convention. Right in the next post.

  • zoltan||

    No Kelo has nothing to do with human freedom. Allowing to state to confiscate private property and hand it over to wealthy developers has nothing to do with human freedom or the constitution. The government confiscating hard-earned income via "small increases in tax rates" definitely not critical to human freedom. And having one's right to self-defense protected and not violated by the state--now that is pretty tangential to human freedom!

  • ||

    You go zoltan. True libertarianism, dat.

  • ||

    Well since I'm one of those rare Lefty Libertarians that hides in the woods and only comes out at night, allow me to applaud Matt for seeing through that crazy lady's facade. Palin is Theocracy with boobs and a wink.

  • Dan H||

    A year after Santelli’s staged ‘rant’, a movement is hijacked & Teabaggers become stooges working for the rich & powerful (http://bit.ly/bFb5N3). And they don't get it that big biz is the real and more dangerous enemy. But powerful biz interests have executed the classic bait and switch, convincing the little people that govt. is their enemy. Evil genius

  • mtb shoes||

    This kind of shoes are very especial and beautiful. I recommend it to you. Hope you like it!

  • sathi2000||

    I have never for one second in my life used or thought the phrase "welfare queen" to mean anything besides one of those Evil Corporations my liberal pals are so afraid of. I don't give one shit about ACORN
    http://destinationsoftwareinc.com

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