Reason.com contributor Dan Mage ("I was a high-tech sweatshop worker for the Obama campaign")writes at Associated Content:
I tell people that libertarianism simply puts the responsibility for caring about other people back on you. It's much easier to say that that "the government should do something about it," than to take any personal responsibility for your life, your community, your country and the planet. To be certain, libertarianism leaves open the option of not caring and doing nothing. Compassion can't be manufactured by a politician's decree, and charity is by nature voluntary and not something a government is really capable of….
I'm a leftist with right-wing sympathies. I realize there is no separating my right to live as I choose from the right of capitalists to make money without government interference.
However, the amount of pure bile and venom that pours forth at the suggestion that workers do have some rights (above and beyond the individual right to enter into a contract), when mentioned on a certain libertarian forum is frightening. The fact that the market fundamentalists often overlook is that massive strikes and boycotts are fair game under their own rules. It's not about "big government" anymore; it's about business, pure and simple. Without big government to turn to, the vulnerability of big business to such actions would drastically increase.
"Turning America over to the corporations" is not the only possible end result of a libertarian system, or a desirable one.
The late William S. Burroughs once said something to the effect of "the belief that people get what they want, and get what they deserve is most popular among people who have what they want and believe that they deserve it."
At the risk of sending more bile and venom Mage's way, read the whole thing here.
I can appreciate Mage's point of view and do think that the nexus of Big Government and Big Business needs a more thorough analysis from a libertarian perspective (especially in the age of Goldman Sachs and Treasury!), but I think the power of corporations is generally exaggerated.
George Mason University economist John Nye's fantastic War, Wine, and Taxes does an excellent job of plumbing the origins of big government and big business in early modern England. Read about it here.