Economics

"What it Feels Like to Be a Libertarian"

|

You may or may not recognize yourself in this essay from Georgetown Associate Professor John Hasnas:

SOMEONE's got a case of the Mondays!

Being a libertarian means living with an almost unendurable level of frustration. It means being subject to unending scorn and derision despite being inevitably proven correct by events. How does it feel to be a libertarian? Imagine what the internal life of Cassandra must have been and you will have a pretty good idea. […]

Libertarians spend their lives accurately predicting the future effects of government policy. Their predictions are accurate because they are derived from Hayek's insights into the limitations of human knowledge, from the recognition that the people who comprise the government respond to incentives just like anyone else and are not magically transformed to selfless agents of the good merely by accepting government employment, from the awareness that for government to provide a benefit to some, it must first take it from others, and from the knowledge that politicians cannot repeal the laws of economics. For the same reason, their predictions are usually negative and utterly inconsistent with the utopian wishful-thinking that lies at the heart of virtually all contemporary political advocacy. And because no one likes to hear that he cannot have his cake and eat it too or be told that his good intentions cannot be translated into reality either by waving a magic wand or by passing legislation, these predictions are greeted not merely with disbelief, but with derision. […]

If you'd like a taste of what it feels like to be a libertarian, try telling people that the incoming Obama Administration is advocating precisely those aspects of FDR's New Deal that prolonged the great depression for a decade; that propping up failed and failing ventures with government money in order to save jobs in the present merely shifts resources from relatively more to relatively less productive uses, impedes the corrective process, undermines the economic growth necessary for recovery, and increases unemployment in the long term; and that any "economic" stimulus package will inexorably be made to serve political rather than economic ends, and see what kind of reaction you get. And trust me, it won't feel any better five or ten years from now when everything you have just said has been proven true and Obama, like FDR, is nonetheless revered as the savior of the country.

Link via Becky Chandler's Twitter feed.

NEXT: Reason Writers Around Town: Peter Suderman in the Wall Street Journal on the Failures of State Health-Care Reforms

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. Awesome. Could have gone on for quite a bit longer, though. And it probably should have ended with “FUUUUUUUUUUUCK!”

  2. If Hasnas finds it “almost endurable” to be a libertarian, he ought to try listening to one. It’s a goddamn living hell!

    1. C’mon, Alan, we know you don’t really listen. Admit it, and you’ll feel better.

  3. I sleep very well at night. You know what the alkies are taught: change the things you have control over, don’t worry about the rest, and stop calling people who disagree with you “douchebags.” That’s what libertarianism is all about, Charlie Brown.

    1. But they are douchebags.

  4. Yeah, yeah, yeah. It should have been “almost unendurable.” It’s the damn absinthe again.

    1. Rocking the absinthe at 10:26?

      You have learned the ways of The Liquor well…

  5. I remember this article from a long time ago. I’ve made the Cassandra argument before and was glad to notice someone else doing it too.

    The other comparison I like to make is Mugatu in Zoolander: “I feel like I’m taking crazy pills!”

    1. Please try to avoid Will Ferrell comparisons. It never ends well.

      But, you probably won’t listen to that advice.

      1. You’re my boy, Bl–…ok…I’ll repress the inner troll.

  6. any “economic” stimulus package will inexorably be made to serve political rather than economic ends

    I have it on good authority that this is WRONG. That’s what everybody tells me, anyway.

    1. Even worse, many statists admit this but don’t care. They say “so what, it’s still spending money on projects that employ or help others”

      If I had hair I’d tear it out.

  7. and stop calling people who disagree with you “douchebags.”

    But that part’s the most fun.

    1. Shut the fuck up, Xeones

  8. I believe I do recognize myself there, although living in West Texas, my rants generally get more nods of approval than derision.

  9. … try telling people that the incoming Obama Administration is advocating precisely those aspects of FDR’s New Deal that prolonged the great depression for a decade…

    That’s fairly easy. I think most people understand, now, that propping up all of those over-leveraged institutions was wrong. What I find difficult, is explaining to people that it was the monetary policies of the Fed that created the mess in the first place.

    1. I’ve run into the same problem. It’s easier for people to accept greed as the obvious culprit and complain about that. No one wants to make the effort to look deeper

      1. Because prior to this, no one was greedy.

        Blaming basic human behavior for causing bad things to happen, instead of the faulty policies that ignored the reality of said behavior — priceless.

      2. I don’t recall where I just read this, but blaming the current recession on greed is like blaming an airline crash on gravity.

        1. Sounds like a Peter Schiff metaphor to me.

  10. I usually feel frustrated, but then Warty makes me feel better.

  11. The person he describes sounds vaguely familiar. I may have met him once.

  12. He left out the fact that the snarky, smug, self-righteous indignation almost totally counterbalances all those negatives.

  13. and stop calling people who disagree with you “douchebags.”

    Is “asshat” still okay? How about “fucktarded”? I mean, you can’t seriously expect to give up insulting people with which we disagree, can you? That’s unAmerican!

  14. I mean, you can’t seriously expect to give up insulting people with which we disagree, can you? That’s unAmerican!

    First Amendment, bitches! Yeehaw!

  15. As my Business Law professor used to say, “It’s only libel if it isn’t true>”

  16. And furthermore the use of douchebag is accurate when in fact that person is a douche bag.

  17. Imagine a period in place of the [>].

  18. Which is why the Libertarian Party has such a mountain to climb in American poltics, 99% of Americans can’t deal with others running their lives, but they want to be able to run others.

    They somehow want the government to be the mama and papa, without having the government be the mama or papa to them.

  19. Their predictions are accurate because they are derived from Hayek’s insights into the limitations of human knowledge

    That’s priceless.

    It’s pretty easy to be right all the time when you make up self-justifying facts out of thin air, such as:

    those aspects of FDR’s New Deal that prolonged the great depression for a decade

    1. Are you a masochist?

    2. shut the fuck up, Tony

    3. I’d like to make a prediction based on self-justifying facts pulled from thin air, if I may. One day you will ask yourself, “How the fuck does a complex economy come grinding to a near standstill for OVER A FUCKING DECADE? Like, what could cause it to stay that way for so long? Did people’s needs and desires take a ten year furlough? What could have possibly caused that condition?” Then, just as the answer is beginning to materialize in an underutilized passageway of your cerebral cortex, a huge safe will fall on top of you.

      1. Apart from ‘FDR prolonged the depression’ being shameless historical revisionism not accepted by most historians or economists, how do you explain the fact that the economy recovered and went on to become the largest in the world despite the fact that New Deal programs were solidly in place and continue to be there? Recovery (and unprecedented prosperity) happened despite the New Deal? Or did the oppressive weight of the New Deal only become realized decades after the fact–Reagan and Bushonomics being simply too little too late to save it by 2008? Like I said, if you can invent your own reality it’s easy to claim you’re right about everything.

        1. Is it possible that “the economy recovered and went on to become the largest in the world” DESPITE the New Deal, rather than because of it?

          Maybe it had something to do with the bombing and razing of every other industrialized country in the world except for us during the late 30’s and early 40’s? The fact that our industrial capacity was completely untouched by war wouldn’t have anything to do with it?

        2. Hey, you smarmy, self-satisfied dipshit. Forgetting that little economic hiccup the US experienced from 1941 to around 1945?

          1. Oh, maybe I invented it in my own reality.

        3. It’s clear you have no clue what you are talking about. 5 of the past 11 nobel economist have agreed that the New Deal made things worse. Then you try to link a strong economy to the new deal yet it’s pretty obvious that the industrial revolution and market correction had far more to with the recovery than FDR. Nice try but you’re opinion is not supported by facts. You might want to educate yourself on the topic before spouting off next time, start with this book: New Deal or Raw Deal?: How FDR’s Economic Legacy Has Damaged America by Burton W., Jr. Folsom

  20. 99% of Americans can’t deal with others running their lives, but they want to be able to run others.

    Yeah, plus they know the heavy hand of the state will never come down on them because they’re good people who don’t do anything wrong. It’s all those other people that are the problem.

  21. I hereby present you with the Alpha and the Omega of all libertarian cynicism…

    http://www.womenshealth.gov/faq/douching.cfm

    1. From that site:

      Can douching after sex stop me from getting pregnant?

      No. Douching does not prevent pregnancy and should never be used as a means of birth control. Actually, douching may make it easier to get pregnant by pushing the sperm further up into the vagina and cervix.

      Can douching hurt my chances of having a healthy pregnancy?

      It may. Limited research shows that douching may make it more difficult for a woman to get pregnant. In women trying to get pregnant, those who douched more than once a week took the longest to get pregnant.

      So, yeah.

      1. Better listen to them, they’re, um, experts.

  22. It’s pretty easy to be right all the time when you make up self-justifying facts out of thin air

    Yes, and you’re going to provide the citations for your numerous claims any time now, right?

    Shut your fat neck, Tony.

  23. Nailed it in the first sentence.

    1. Being a libertarian means living with an almost unendurable level of frustration.

      Libertarianism – the chastity device of politics.

  24. Which is why the Libertarian Party has such a mountain to climb in American poltics

    If the libertarianish party can pull 14% in Germany, imagine what it would do here in the US. The reason the LP doesn’t go anywhere here is because it’s a 3rd party.

  25. libertarians – when are we ever going to learn to deny reality like everyone else?

    After all, look at how well Medicare does compared to other insurance companies!

  26. Well, there was this king, and he ruled over his kingdom.

    Right in the middle of the kingdom there was a well. That’s where everybody drank.

    One night, this witch came along… and she poisoned the well. And the next day, everybody drank from it except the king… and they all went crazy.

    They got together in the street and they said… “We got to get rid of the king, ’cause the king is mad.”

    And then that night, he went down and he drank from the well. And the next day all the people rejoiced… because their king had regained his reason.

  27. But it smells like … victory!

  28. and stop calling people who disagree with you “douchebags.”

    Is “asshat” still okay? How about “fucktarded”? I mean, you can’t seriously expect to give up insulting people with which we disagree, can you? That’s unAmerican!

    The libertarian standard issue, broad band, epithet is “sheeple”.

  29. Well, there was this king, and he ruled over his kingdom.

    In the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is locked up as a dangerous heretic.

    1. I’m so glad I’m not the only one who realizes this. Who the hell ever thought the one-eyed man would be king? Everybody would think he was a delusional freak.

  30. In the UK it’s frustrating that Libertarianism tends to be seen as being very right wing.
    Also being associated with the type of “free market commentators” whose opposition to government intervention seems to have conveniently been suspended when the financial services sector received massive government support.

  31. Yeah, plus they know the heavy hand of the state will never come down on them because they’re good people who don’t do anything wrong.

    Sadly, they disregard the Sixth Iron Law:

    6. Me today, you tomorrow.

  32. Becky Chandler’s Twitter Feed
    =====KEEPE BUDGIE REGULARED!=====
    CUSTOMER IS MINOR GOD OF DOMESTIC FINCH
    go @ find burdisafed1.cc

    1. I had a budgie but it died

      I like
      piiiiiieeeeee

  33. After all, look at how well Medicare does compared to other insurance companies!

    Awesome!

  34. “It [being a libertarian] means being subject to unending scorn and derision despite being inevitably proven correct by events.”

    It also apparently means being an arrogant asshole.

    Correct preditions? How about the road to serfdom? Pitty those poor Danish and Norwegian serfs. Social Seciruty? It will never work! Ron Paul? Aside from being a Bible-thumping, anti-immigrant, save-Xmas-from-the-atheists, race-bating bag of shit, the great libertarian hope. You guys have earned the contempt and derision that’s heaped on you.

    1. Oh, allow me…

      Shut the fuck up, Edward.

    2. Thanks for dropping by and demonstrating how a raging, progressive prick behaves.

    3. Oh-wee-oh-wee-oh!

    4. Edward, kill yourself.

    5. You guys have earned the contempt and derision that’s heaped on you.

      Coming from you, that’s a compliment.

      Oh, and shut the fuck up, douchebag.

    6. Check out a mirror sometime, you missed a little froth on the sides of your mouth, ‘centrist’ man.

      1. Who said it was froth?

        1. ooooh – snap!

    7. People in europe do not live in a vaccume, they consume American products and health care supplies and medicines.
      Over the past 20 years, European pharmaceutical companies went from producing 80 drugs a year to 40. Almost every Nobel prize for medicine and science goes to American researchers (many of them foreign who live and work here).

      Why? Because we are better? smarter? no, we aren’t. It is because of the free market. Here you might get rewarded for what you learn in research, and so people pay for it. In heavily regulated European medicne, there is little reward, so it is done less.

      So yes, pity the Europeans, their science is dwindling and being handed over to Americans, or their scientists are outright moving here.

      1. But they get to be lazy, free-riding bitches.

        I for one am getting tired of subsidizing fuckbag Europeons.

      2. Do you have a link for those drug-inventing figures? I’ve been arguing with a liberal friend for months over socialized medicine, and she refuses to acknowledge that there even *might* be a downside. I’ll probably never change her mind, but I’ll keep throwing facts at her as long as she’s determined to force her stupid system on me.

    8. Your implication being that Social Security works?

      I cannot undertake to lay my finger on that article of the Constitution which granted a right to Congress of expending, on objects of benevolence, the money of their constituents.

      1. Article 1, Section 8 gives Congress the authority to levy taxes “to provide for the general welfare.” Liberals use this as a carte blanche to exceed the enumerated powers despite the explicit ban on such activity (Amendment 10). I don’t agree with the practice, but this is your reference.

    9. Social Security is solvent now? Look into that one a little more deeply.

      Have you been following world politics? Denmark is having some issues, largely brought on by its generous welfare. Review what parties are making the greatest gains there and see if you like those. Norway is mostly funded by oil.

      Either of those countries is about 40 years into their experiments. 40 years isn’t a long time, they’ll change dramatically within another 40.

      Large ‘social systems’ leave countries very leveraged if something goes wrong. Iceland isn’t in great shape right now, despite being so highly ‘developed’. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/H…..ment_Index

  35. Libertarianism will never appeal to intellectuals. In some ways it ought to because Libertarianism is really a utopian ideology. Marxists beleive man can be perfected by the government. Libertarians beleive man can be perfected by being left alone.

    Utopian or not it will never appeal to intellectuals. Intellectuals want to be problem solvers. They won’t to be able to go out and remake the world and other people in thier image. They are idealists who want to believe that they are smarter, more important than and capable of perfecting the common man to an ideal. An ideal set by intellectuals of course. When you consider this, it is easy to see why so many intellectuals are seduced by Marxism and socialism.

    Libertarianism because it is centered on the ideal of the indvidual perfecting himself, rather than being perfected from above by intellectuals, will never appeal to intellectuals.

    1. Maybe its utiopian tendencies are part of the reason it doesn’t appeal to intellectuals.

      If something doesn’t appeal to smart people, maybe there’s something wrong with it and not the smart people.

      1. Utopian? Hardly. Libertarianism is realist.

        It recognizes that there are certain aspects of the human condition which cannot be socially engineered or legislated away, no matter who is in office.

        Progressivism, on the other hand, thinks that the government is capable of solving each and every social ill that plagues us. But only if the right people are in charge (read: them).

      2. Maybe its utiopian tendencies are part of the reason it doesn’t appeal to intellectuals.

        How do you explain the long-running love affair with socialism in intellectual circles? Or were they all just faux intellectuals all along?

      3. ‘We smart because we say we is smart!!11!’

        Fucktard.

    2. I’m not sure where you’re getting that, since everything I’ve read about Libertarianism is’t exactly the opposite.

      Any sort of talk about perfectionism is almost always rooted in morals. Libertarians are against the government being able to dictate what is morally wrong to people.

    3. Libertarianism because it is centered on the ideal of the indvidual perfecting himself…

      Welp, I’m boned.

  36. Libertarians beleive man can be perfected by being left alone.

    Wait, what? I must have missed that memo. As far as I can tell, libertarianism isn’t about “perfecting” anybody.

  37. John – it is precisely because libertarians recognize that men are not perfect that we realize that giving them power is a fools’ errand. Libertarianism is the antithesis of Utopian ideologies.

  38. It’s pretty easy to be right all the time when you make up self-justifying facts out of thin air, such as:

    those aspects of FDR’s New Deal that prolonged the great depression for a decade

    Tony’s right. That statement was completely false. It wasn’t a decade, it was only eight years or so.

  39. The libertarian solutions all revolve around the fact that there is no free lunch. No one wants to hear that.

  40. Ok, could someone explain the Cassandra shit for us illiterate libs?

      1. dude, I only come to this site…why go anyplace else, duh?

        1. I agree. I personally like to go to liberal, progressive, and conservative sites and troll because I hate seeing people with opposing viewpoints being able to express themselves.

          1. really? I do it because I enjoy the sport of it.

            Kind of like shooting fish in a barrel. Only the fish outnumber you, and you’re inside the barrel with them.

            Besides, echo chambers are no fun at all.

    1. This might help you out. Short version: Character in Greek myth who was able to foresee the future, but cursed so that nobody would believe her (invariably accurate) prophecies.

      1. Huh. That link was supposed to go to the Wikipedia entry for “Cassandra”.

        1. Just use my link.

  41. It’s pretty easy to be right all the time when you make up self-justifying facts out of thin air

    Is this on Page One of The Progressive Handbook?

  42. That’s fairly easy. I think most people understand, now, that propping up all of those over-leveraged institutions was wrong. What I find difficult, is explaining to people that it was the monetary policies of the Fed that created the mess in the first place.

    That is why Krugman’s description of the Austrian business cycle as the ‘hang over theory’ is an inept analogy for a policy that prescribes not going on the binge in the first place.

  43. Ok, could someone explain the Cassandra shit for us illiterate libs?

    According to Greek Mythology, Cassandra was a princess of troy who was also a priestess of Apollo. Apollo wanted to have sex with her, so he gave her the gift of prophecy. But she still wouldn’t sleep with him, so then he cursed her by making it so nobody would ever believe anything she predicted.

    So, later on during the Trojan war she told everyone that they would lose, Troy would be sacked, and they would all be taken back as slaves. Among other things. Naturally nobody believed her, but it all came true.

    1. Wait…if she could see the future then why didn’t she know that Apollo would do that? This whole prophecy stuff sounds tedious…

      1. Just because you can see the future doesn’t mean you can do a damn thing to change it. Just ask libertarians.

        1. She could of done him and prevented the outcome I guess.

  44. So yes, pity the Europeans, their science is dwindling and being handed over to Americans, or their scientists are outright moving here.

    Not to worry, we’re adopting the European model!

    The Obamasiah is on the Mayan calendar, so party like it’s 2011!

  45. Libertarianism because it is centered on the ideal of the indvidual perfecting himself, rather than being perfected from above by intellectuals, will never appeal to intellectuals.

    One: if so – Who cares? ‘Intellectuals’ by contemporary definition are socially useless bystanders to events…

    Two: Perfecting the individual?

    I would posit that libertarianism recognizes people as fundamentally flawed, and seeks to limit the power they can wield over one another.

    I dont see where this requires anyone to ever ‘perfect’ anything. Yes, it may leave open the option to do so (which you may read as *expecting* the individual to be engaged in doing so), but I would think the greater part of liberty is to remove the entire idea of a standard of perfection entirely.

    1. Not quite. Those who wish to approach their idea of perfection are liberated to do so by limiting oppression. Libertarianism makes no call here, your perfection could be opposite mine and as long as you don’t unlawfully impede me, we’re both a-okay.

  46. I agree on WTF? Utopianism? part.

    Liberty is about being left the eff alone unless you are harming someone directly. With that, comes the obligation to take responsibility for your own actions. Full stop.

    Perfecting oneself is always an option, but it’s way down the list. I’ll leave that up to the philosophy majors.

    1. My degree is in social science, but I’ll take a crack at it:
      The modern, American conception of “Perfection” derives loosely from the Judeo-Christian ethic, in the root language of which “perfection” means only “completion.”
      Some feel complete being who they are; some feel complete while striving for a certain goal.
      Fortunately, the liberated man is free to make his own definitions, his own efforts, and his own mistakes.

  47. All of you leave John alone!

    He must’ve met me.

    I’m totally perfect.

  48. correct me if I am wrong.

    I see libertarianism thusly:

    Governments role is to provide security for americans to pursue the rights guaranteed in the constitution.
    I am free to live as I choose with a few exceptions. Don’t murder. Don’t steal. Don’t deny basic freedoms to others.
    I am responsible for the choices I make and the results of those choices
    Beyond this, no one, including the government, owes me anything.

    1. You’re going to have to clarify yourself:

      “Governments role is to provide security”

      How is it funded? If it’s funded through (involuntary) taxes that goes completely against Liberarianism, since the government would be iniating force against people.

      1. Yet another anarchist.

      2. This is one that always makes me wonder, actually. If not taxes, then how does we fund the government? Such as it may be. Albeit one of limited powers, created by the consent of the governed, for the purpose of protecting their rights and assuring a “well-ordered liberty,” it still will need money to function. Where does it come from, if not taxes? Libertarians are not anarchists; thus they recognize the need for some government.

        1. Having any sort of mandatory taxes (military, courts, etc) still is the government deciding what is right for you and forcing you into what they decided. If they can decide you “need” one of those things, then they can decide you “need” other things, which puts us back where we are now.

          It’s still government being two wolves and one sheep deciding what to have for dinner, even though it’s on a smaller scale.

          The government could still be funded, but voluntarily. If you want a bigger military go ahead and donate more of your money but someone who doesn’t want to donate their money shouldn’t be forced to.

          Police could work just like any other freemarket solution. You pay if you decide to use them (call for help, etc). The courts could work the same way and the guilty person would end up paying.

        2. As a further point….

          If you still have mandatory taxes to fund the military how much is enough? Should the military be given only guns or do they need tanks? Or do they something more?

          How much the military gets is still a moral decision.

        3. Let them have bake sales. Let them volunteer. Let them beg in the streets. If they can’t find a way to raise money without stealing it, their services aren’t very well desired or needed by people. That’s supply and demand: if there is a good or service available, and there is a desire for that service, there will be a natural meeting-in-the-middle and money will be exchanged.

          I’m not worried about how the government will fare without taxation in the least little bit. Everything good they do will find a way to be paid for, and everything bad they do will go unfunded as it should be. In other words, I’m not worried how cotton is going to get picked when the slaves are freed. It’s an issue of such little significance compared to the larger moral and practical question it does not need consideration.

          1. That’s a very convincing argument, but only after a sufficient introduction to liberty. Thank you.

    2. Almost.

      Government’s role is to _enforce_ those inalienable, God-given rights.
      If someone threatens life, liberty, or the pursuit of happiness, they need to know there will be consequences for robbing another of liberty.
      The question of how it’s funded, of course, is ancillary.

  49. Governments role is to provide security for americans to pursue the rights guaranteed in the constitution.

    Sounds good to me. Why are social safety nets not included in this ‘security’? Aircraft carriers are ok but health insurance is evil government meddling?

    1. Aircraft carriers are a helluva lot cheaper than providing free healthcare to the whole country.

      1. Also, aircraft carriers can be sold as scrap if they turn out not to work as advertised.

        Healthcare, not so much. It’s a money pit that never gets full, no matter how much you shovel into it.

  50. I feel insecure when I don’t have sex for a long time. Sounds like Tony would favor a government program that would provide me concubines. Thanks Tony!

  51. You have unalienable rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. This means that state cannot meddle with your life, your liberty, or your pursuits without just cause where just cause is limited to making sure that you don’t meddle with someone else’s rights to life, liberty, and pursing happiness.

    You have no rights of any kind to actually be successful in your life, liberty, and pursuits. Nor do you have any right to expect the state to force other free individuals to help you.

  52. But, but…no man can truly be free on an empty stomach!

    Any inequalities in bargaining power are de facto coercive!

    1. Freedom’s just another word for nothing left to loose.

      1. Um, er, that should be “lose”….

        1. Freedom’s just another word for nothing left too loose.

          Sorry bout that.

          1. I sit corrected…..

          2. Did somebody call me?

  53. Off topic, for those with delicate sensibilities:

    Feministing flame war

    BECAUSE WE DON’T FEEL SAFE COMMENTING HERE.

    For God’s sake, people.

    I’ve never felt safe commenting here. Because of shit like this whole fucking thread.

    Never. Not even when I didn’t even identify as disabled. When I was just a young white feminist getting into this whole reading-feminist-blogs thing and liking it. I STILL FELT UNCOMFORTABLE AND UNWELCOME IN COMMENTS HERE.

    Hey, Jessica, Vanessa, Samhita, Ann, Miriam and Courtney. It would be very nice if you would engage constructively with us, like, NOW, because this is starting to get ugly and most of us do not have the *physical energy* to handle all of this.

    THIS is the problem we are complaining about. THIS WHOLE THREAD. All of this. This is what makes us uncomfortable here. Like we aren’t welcome as feminists. Because of things like this thread.

    Please, would you PLEASE talk to us constructively?

    The issue behind this impassioned plea? Someone used the word “lame” and the moderators didn’t delete it.

    1. Well I can understand – I wouldn’t have the *physical energy* to participate in a shit-storm about that either.

      Moderator – one who transforms the Internet into the InterNERF.

    2. Stupid cunts.

      The fucking site is called ‘Feministing’ which is a take-off of ‘fisting’ and they are offended by ‘lame’?!

      1. I object to your use of violent sexual imagery. Why won’t the Reason moderators protect my delicate sensibilities?!

    3. whew….I started reading those comments, thinking “this might be a great place to troll”…and then I kept reading and realized that they are self-trolling themselves much harder than I could ever expect to accomplish.

    4. Holy crap.

      I’m sorry Kerry Howley, but most of those chicks over there are absolutely self-victimizers.

    5. Dang! Feminists upset my delicate sensibilities…and I’m female! Fisting, by the way, does require a good bit of physical energy…just sayin’…

    6. The funniest thing I’ve read in a while. Unintentional comedy rocks!

  54. Splenda, I don’t even know how you read more than five minutes of that. One of the comments said “I’m a woman, and I don’t have a vagina…” and I just rolled my eyes and clicked on the X.

  55. SugarFree,

    The only thing these ladies are lacking is a Jim Jones to lead them to their logical conclusions.

  56. er, conclusion, a singular destiny awaits.

  57. Pet peeve: It isn’t ‘have your cake and eat it too.’ If you have your cake, of course you can eat it — the eaten cake being the end state.

    What you can’t do is ‘eat your cake and have it too,’ the end state being the same cake both in your stomach and still on your plate.

    You’re welcome.

    1. Indeed. Quite correct.

      And all that glisters isn’t gold, and if you could care less about something, that means you do care about it to some degree.

    2. Ahem, “have it TWOXOR.”

      FTFY.

  58. Damn you, SF…those people are friggin’ nuts. And probably some loaded code word for physically challenged, too!

  59. those people are friggin’ nuts

    Yes, they are. Here’s a post where the commenters talk about their various mental illness. The irony is scrumptious.

    1. How do you do it Sug? Are there special goggles or some kind of drug? I ask, as my eyes start to bleed every time I read that site.

      1. I already work on a college campus. My tolerance is high.

  60. Ableism is a disease.

    1. This comment makes me feel safe. Thank you.

      Anyone who disagrees is just invisibilizing the marginalized, and should check their privilege.

  61. Or just ask Peter Schiff. They laughed at him when he predicted economic disaster. After it happened, they grudgingly admitted he was right, but continued to laugh at him for explaining that the various bailouts and stimulus programs are just setting the economy up for a bigger and more prolonged disaster.

  62. What you can’t do is ‘eat your cake and have it too,’ the end state being the same cake both in your stomach and still on your plate.

    Sure you can!

  63. There’s a lot of cake in this thread, and that’s Good.

  64. Which is why the Libertarian Party has such a mountain to climb in American poltics…

    The Libertarian Party’s main problem is that it is a self-imposed small tent dedicated to a one misguided school of libertarian thought.

    1. And the point of the article is made in HIS immaculate image.

    2. The problem with the Libertarian Party is that they refused to run Ann Coulter becuase she was objected to immediate drug legalization.

  65. Damn you, SF…those people are friggin’ nuts. And probably some loaded code word for physically challenged, too!

    The word you’re looking for is “female.”

    1. Stop it! I have sensory issues, is all!

  66. There’s a lot of cake in this thread, and that’s Good.

    No.

  67. Since Epi is “busy” with his small start-up, I will assume this duty for him:

    “Hi. This is Wilford Brimley. Welcome to ‘Retardation: A Celebration.’ Now, hopefully with this book, I’m gonna dispel a few myths, a few rumors. First off, the retarded don’t rule the night. They don’t rule it ? nobody does. And they don’t run in packs. And while they may not be as strong as apes, don’t lock eyes with ’em, don’t do it. Puts ’em on edge. They might go into berserker mode, come at you like a whirling dervish, all fists and elbows. You might be screaming, ‘No, no, no,’ ? all they hear is, ‘Who wants cake?’ Let me tell you something: They all do. They all want cake”

    1. Best. Paragraph. Ever.

  68. Hasnas is a whiner. Being a libertarian is awesome!

    We enjoy all the things that make America great (capitalism, rock ‘n’ roll, eating bacon-wrapped hot dogs in our SUVs) without a load of liberal guilt.

    We’re not consumed with minding everybody else’s business or bombing the rest of the world into behaving correctly.

    We tend to be self-selected from a pool of people that are more competent and self-confident than the public at large, and we tend to be better off materially because we don’t have a bunch of mistaken ideas about how the economy works.

    And nobody can beat us when it comes to snark!

    1. You make the mistake of applying your brand of libertarianism to a set of material end products, which makes it easier to dismiss. You also associate your brand of libertarianism with great Americanism, which sounds a little gross.

    2. A man is likely to mind his own business when it is worth minding. When it is not, he takes his mind off his own meaningless affairs by minding other people’s business.

    3. Sooo right Mike. I guess the only time it sucks is in the momentary descent into pro-lib type thought when we wonder what the hell is wrong with everybody else and try to help the poor bastards around us.

      As long as we don’t worry too much about teaching these people to fish, and just throw them a fish and go merrily on our way, Libertarianism does tend to rock.

      Talking Dem’s and Repub’s into a libertarian mindset is as useful and frustrating as trying to convince an agoraphobic five year old to go to the park. I say let them have their delusions and all the worry that comes with that. I’ll even start telling them “you know…you are absolutely right”. It’ll be the punch line to my own private joke.

      Cheers!

      1. I was a simple Republican. Now I am a libertarian. I thank you all for your moments of clarity.

        The great thing is, libertarianism has an exit door nearby from wither party. Disaffected Republicans can see that its economic success increased in the past inasmuch as it adopted free-market principles but contracted when they tried to govern things closely. Disaffected Democrats can see that people should be free to experience life through their own values set, not one dictated by enforced moralism.

        Glad I made it out. Let the snarky comments continue–a perception of fun is indeed helpful–but please, also cease not to rock the reason.

  69. And what the hell is with pushing off posts to the “previous” page that are still on the same day? Up the limit!

  70. I was reminded recently that it may be a lonely feeling. I was sitting at lunch with 2 co-workers a few weeks ago. I can’t remember the exact topic, but it was political. One of my co-workers made the statement ‘It is a lonely feeling being a Libertarian in Maryland’. I looked at him without a lot of thought about this at the moment, a little surprise maybe(not much, had talked to the guy a lot before about political issues, and although the word Libertarian did not come up, I noticed a lot of his views leaned in that direction). I said ‘Hey, there are 2 of us!’. He continued to eat his sandwich and did not seem to be too cheered up at this revelation.

  71. Tell me about it. im in comparitive politics and all i hear is “America is a two party system” all day, and then i think to myself, thanks for rubbing it in ass hole.

  72. You make the mistake of applying your brand of libertarianism to a set of material end products, which makes it easier to dismiss. You also associate your brand of libertarianism with great Americanism, which sounds a little gross.

    Please expound. I can guess at what you meant, but there are many possibilities.

  73. From the sheep, right? LOL, J/k (West Texas joke)

  74. On the flipside, being a libertarian means being completely free of the pained cynicism associated with utopian thinking (“This would all be perfect if people didn’t suck so much!”). I am less cynical now than I ever was, because I understand that socialist thinking isn’t an unachievable perfection but rather an impossible stupidity, so hoping for it in vain isn’t productive and its failure is not the fault of a world of evil people but rather a failure of logic.

    It also means being free of feelings of guilt and obligation to “one’s fellow man”. I will never again be depressed or insulted when I’m called selfish for pursuing my own interests instead of giving myself to others. I will also never again be insulted by statements about my lack of “spirituality”. I know now that what I do in pursuit of my own interest is morally superior, and that that kind of thinking is obscenity that results in more, not less, poverty and human suffering.

    It’s not all bad, not by a longshot. 🙂

    1. I would not say morally superior. You’re falling into the same trap they’re enjoying by doing that. But living a productive life does help others more than forcing other people to help others.

  75. With many new announcement about the wizard of oz movies in the news, you might want to consider starting to obtain Wizard of Oz book series either as collectible or investment at RareOzBooks.com.

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.