Climate Change

Liberals Are Done Debating

When a group confuses its politics with moral doctrine, it may have trouble comprehending how a decent human could disagree with its positions.


This week, for example, while thinking about the pope's take on global warming, I tweeted out this comment: "Celebrate climate change, an externality of the greatest poverty destroying program in the history of mankind." There is plenty to disagree with in my observation, I admit. Although I believe what I wrote to be true, I sent it out partly to elicit exactly the sort of reaction my tweet got—with one person calling me a psychopath (a Slate writer, not some anonymous critic) and another calling me sociopathic, among other things. I don't mind the insults (perversely, in fact, I sort of enjoy them), but I do mind that the debate is over.

Conservatives may be ethically compromised, uninformed or—if liberals are in a generous mood—mentally unstable, but they can't be for real. At least, that's the sense I increasingly get from the left these days. Blame it on social media.
When a group confuses its politics with moral doctrine, it may have trouble comprehending how a decent human could disagree with its positions. This is probably why people confuse lecturing with debating and why so many liberals can bore into the deepest nooks of my soul to ferret out all those motivations but can't waste any time arguing about the issue itself.

Are you also corrupt? Probably. Bought off by big oil, big food or big something or other? Washington is teeming with Manchurian candidates, because no one could possibly be this malicious on his own. Why should liberals debate a point when they can debate your imaginary sugar daddy? Why else would conservatives "hate workers"? Why would they "bet against America"? Why do they want to destroy democracy? Why would conservatives vote against their own interests? Someone pays them to lie.

Or maybe you favor inequality, injustice, rape culture, and poverty because privilege clouds your sense of decency. If you were born wealthy (anything over 130 percent of the poverty level or so), how can anyone expect you to have empathy for the destitute? You certainly don't possess the life experience or skin color to challenge leftist economic doctrine. For inexplicable reasons—that can't possibly have anything to do with a genuine belief in supply-side economics, a belief in property rights or an aversion to punishing success—tens of millions of you spend your political lives protecting the interests of billionaires for no other reason than that you hate the poor.

You hate a lot of things, don't you? Like half the country, you're furtively racist and irrationally misogynistic. The American idea is erected on a foundation of intolerance, according to one of the most celebrated thinkers on the left. You hate black people, sure, but also brown people. So this bloodlust manifests when you oppose the president on foreign policy, for instance. (Then again, maybe it's the Israel lobby paying you off.) You're not anti-Iran deal; you're pro-war. Just as you're not pro-Second Amendment; you're pro-mass shootings. You're not concerned about terrorism or (genuine) illiberalism; you're a bigot. You're not pro-school choice; you're anti-children. You're not pro-traditional marriage; you're anti-dignity. You're not pro-entitlement reform; you're anti-retirement.

You're not in favor of a cost-benefit analysis when it comes to climate change policy; you're anti-science. Skeptic. Denier. Psychopath. Why do you hate Earth?

Don't like big government? You're a nihilist. Forget what your policy does; watch your tone. Transphobic. Homophobic. Eleutherophobic. Sure, you may claim that you want to save unborn girls from the scalpels of Planned Parenthood, but your real goal is to control women. Even if you're Carly Fiorina.

Or maybe you can't see things clearly because you're hooked to the most addictive opiate imaginable, religion—which, let's face it, you probably don't properly understand or adhere to correctly. Here, let them tell you what Jesus would do. Are you part of some regressive denomination that follows doctrine and hasn't been poll testing on the left, that isn't always pleasing to millennials' ears, that hasn't evolved properly or that still clings to "religious freedom"? You're a modern-day Orval Eugene Faubus, probably. We can sue you into compliance or mock you into the 21st century, because clearly you're too selfish to be part of our future.

What conservatives (and some libertarians) possess are not arguments but corrupt and nefarious ambitions. Defend yourself. What you can't possibly have are legitimate differences of opinion.


NEXT: Watch Matt Welch Talk Pope, Trump, 'Cyberbullying' and More at 3 a.m. on Red Eye w/ Tom Shillue

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  1. I’ve been told by right-wingers that my economic philosophy– left-wing, 70s-style, welfare state socialism– is responsible for one hundred million deaths and that people like Pierre Trudeau, bob hawke and Norman Thomas are covered in peasant blood. So, maybe this close-mindedness that you’re talking about, David, isn’t just for cynical Leftists who think politics is bought-and-paid-for.

    1. Wow. You’re admitting those deaths even took place? Progress.

      1. What would be progress for you guys is to admit that there is a difference between FDR and Josef Stalin.

        1. You’re right buddy. Everyone says they’re both the same. They do it all the time.

          1. They are indeed both the same, because neither of them would have allowed an inappropriately deadpan campaign of satirical Internet impersonation to go unpunished. See the documentation of America’s leading criminal satire case at:


            Just as the American prosecutors, Stalin would undoubtedly have understood that no state can allow anyone to send out “Gmail confessions” portraying a distinguished academic department chairman as justifying an act of alleged plagiarism on the grounds that “if I had given credit to this man I would have been banned from conferences around the world.” That is a crime, pure and simple, and Stalin. who understood when force needed to be used, would never have attempted to argue otherwise.

            1. P.s. and this ? the illegal indiscretion of deadpan Gmail confessions ? is what certain individuals call “speech with academic value,” or “debate,” in America.

        2. Tell me, is Stalin still “right wing” or has he been rehabilitated?

          1. There you go again. I specifically point you to my political philosophy– which has as little to do with Stalinism as right-wing libertarianism– and you trot out the Bolsheviks. You right-wingers can’t help yourselves. You are pitifully Pavlovian.

            1. What would be progress for you guys is to admit that there is a difference between FDR and Josef Stalin.

              Seems like you’re the one who did the trotting out.

            2. american socialist|9.25.15 @ 2:53AM|#
              “…I specifically point you to my political philosophy– which has as little to do with Stalinism as right-wing libertarianism…”

              Right. Your ‘philosophy’ is to support a system responsible for millions of deaths and claim you don’t want to be blamed for supporting a system that is responsible for millions of deaths.
              I believe that ‘philosophy’ is called “hypocrisy” by honest people.
              BTW, shitbag, ever pay your mortgage?

              1. You know he hasn’t? It’s the way of his kind. Run up a big bill, and then leave without paying. Then they blame the people lent them the money in the first place. Then blame them again when they don’t want to lend money to deadbeats anymore.

                1. Didn’t mea to use a question mark at the end of my first sentence. I meant that there is no goddamn way that deadbeat commie lover paid what he owes.

            3. You brought up Stalin. Dummy.

        3. “What would be progress for you guys is to admit that there is a difference between FDR and Josef Stalin.”

          They both had concentration camps but FDR’s were based on race. Stalin was color blind on those. Concentration camps were for all the people. So in that sense Stalin was a better progressive than FDR.

          1. FDRs were “color blind” only if you ignore the Germans and Italians he put into camps and the ones he did not round up, import, or put strict curfews on.

            He even had “colored”/white segregated bathrooms in the Pentagon, which later revisionists laughingly blame on Virginia law!

            1. That was confusing.

              FDRs were “color blind” only if you ignore the Germans and Italians he put into camps and the ones he did not round up, import, or put strict curfews on.

              Should be:
              FDRs were “color blind” only if you ignore the Germans and Italians he rounded up, imported, put strict curfews on, and/or put into camps.

            2. Good gravy. FDRs were as color blind as Stalins.

        4. Fair point. FDR only put people in concentration camps, not death camps.

          1. I don’t think that FDR had that option. And just like Obama, just beach use a vicious dog is muzzled and can’t bite you, doesn’t mean that it won’t if the muzzle comes off. Such is always the way of the progressive when any amount of Liberty remains.

            That’s why they work so hard to strip out all our liberty.

        5. Nah, I wouldn’t compare FDR to Stalin. Mussolini maybe.

        6. I don’t know. Did you ever see them in the same place at the same time?

        7. FDR was the one in the wheelchair.

        8. It’s quite a step for a leftard like you to admit that Uncle Joe was any worse than FDR. Congratulations!


        9. Of course there is a difference. FDR was a progressive, while Stalin was a communist. Progressivism is a precursor of fascism, not of socialism or communism.

        10. It didn’t turn in to the Soviet Union, but those housing projects you guys plopped down around the zip code that I grew up in really screwed it up. After those things arrived, anything not nailed down or sufficiently secured would magically disappear.

          Then the usually neighborhood decay happened. It’s a completely unrecognizable cesspool today.


        11. Yeah fascists are different from communists, nobody said differently that I ever heard. Now maybe you can admit that the difference might be due to the American people putting up with less than the Russians do. Nah….

      2. Wow. You’re admitting those deaths even took place? Progress.

        Agreed. It was a great leap forward for him.

        1. He has a 5-year plan.

          1. After which he’ll be totally Juche.

    2. Nah, you usually get those comments when you, ya know, defend brutal, totalitarian communist dictatorships that have murdered millions of people, which you have done consistently (of course, the less-filling variety of Marxism that you purport to support here is better only in degree). Through the miracle of projection you’re able to ascribe all of the disgusting, violent, repressive, murderous shit you vocally and enthusiastically support onto your political enemies. Thanks for proving the author’s point.

      1. Where did I do that? Like when I said the Soviet Union put the first man in space or that they implemented universal suffrage before the United States? Sorry, those are all historical facts. I’m just saying that given the state of the country in the United States that right-wingers who say that free-market capitalism is the bestest ever might want to look at the inner cities or the Mississippi Delta before they start crowing about how unregulated markets and trickle-down economics are clearly the way to go. It’s really your triumphalism in the face of what I see as meager empirical data that I criticize.

        1. i don’t think anything going on in this country says ANYTHING about unregulated markets, except maybe that they’re an alternative we haven’t really tried. it does seem pretty indisputable that the freer people are the more wealthy and successful they are (on average), and the problems america has are pretty much the ways we’re not a free market, i think. america is more of a corporate oligarchy than a free market, and i really really doubt that more rules and regulations is the way to fix that

          1. my anti poverty program would be something more like not arresting people for trying to make a living (i dunno how anyone sees needing an “aesthetician’s license” to do people’s hair to be anything other than insane. we can’t tell people they can’t do what they do to make a living and then complain about them being on welfare)

            1. Shhh.

              Many people in the inner cities (run by liberals) would easily work themselves out of poverty if they could start a small business with no government interference. Some in “the delta” try by selling a little distilled corn, but the heavy hand of the State comes down on them.

              Allowing people to offer their products, skills and talents on the open market in order to make an honest living is reserved for people willing to comply with the State. /derp

            2. Rules and regulations are the thing enabling the corporate oligarchy. Anyone who has a pedestrian understanding of how crony corporatism works knows that the biggest beneficiaries are not the consumers of the newly-regulated industry (as is advertised by the useful idiots passing the laws), but the regulated corporations. They provide the executives for the regulatory agencies (there is really no way around this, despite what regulation-lovers insist), and they therefore pass regulations that serve them by reducing economic freedom within that market. Their market share is now protected from the biggest source of innovation, which is new upstarts that are more agile and responsive to consumers. In most cases, the industry in question is not strictly dominated by a monopoly but a few corporations who have agreed to live in peace with their mutually comfortable market share, achieving the appearance of competition, and providing the red-herring backdrop for inappropriate attacks on “the free-market”.

              1. The damage to consumers is never recognized by supporters (hence their usefulness), because it exists in the market innovation that never occurs in the following years. An example of a minimally regulated market that serves its consumers well and continually innovates is the tech industry. An example of an industry where the most useful of idiots have no idea how bad they’ve fucked us is healthcare (they took the entire pricing scheme out of the market through making 3rd party payers ubiquitous, which is a crippling blow to consumer-driven response in a market). They don’t see the damage done by their well-intended maternalism, so they deny they’ve killed millions. They keep applying the poisonous medicine. And if they can’t beat you with economic arguments, they they try to hit you in the morals.

              2. Even personal welfare programs that american socialist supports are corporate welfare.

                After all, if you give free money to a poor person on an EBT card and they take it down to Walmart to spend it, Walmart profits from it. The welfare recipient walks out with a good that he/she didn’t have before, but Walmart makes the sale from a price that is higher than it otherwise would be without widespread EBT use.

                And that passes down through the Value-Added logistics/manufacturing chain all the way to China, so american socialist should really be called “Chinese communist” instead.

                Follow the welfare dollar all the way down the line through the giant crony corporatist machine…

                1. Convenience stores accept EBT cards. Convenience stores!

            3. Would you support an end to the drug prohibitions and an end to arresting people for selling a product — be it marijuana, ecstasy, or even the Peaceful Pill — for which there is clearly a market demand for? I sure would. Not only has Prohibition II been an abject failure, it contravenes the very principles of individual liberty this nation was founded upon. Not just liberty of personal use, but liberty to earn a living from the system of supply and demand.

              I for one think that the 21st amendment to the constitution should have been expanded to include all personal vices. It’s not any right of the government to decide what another person does with their body or their money. If they want to buy food with it fine; if they want to buy booze or weed that’s fine too. Heck, if they want to grow their own plants or brew their own moonshine have at it. We’ve allowed this perverse statist interpretation of the commerce clause to mean that the government can regulate purchases of products that TPTB say are “bad for you.” The fullest extent of this foolishness can be seen in Bloomberg’s inane restrictions on purchasing large-quantity soda cups. Gives a whole new meaning to the term “Coke dealer.”

              I think that if we’re going to make it easier for people to make a living, we need to expand the definition of what is legal to sell. I’m wondering what you think since you brought up arresting people.

        2. If you can say that the USSR had “universal suffrage” with a straight face, you deserve every bit of mockery you can get.

          1. Everyone votes for Khruschev or get shot. How is that not universal?

            1. You win!^

          2. But its true both women and men were allowed to vote for the 1 candidate selected by the communist party.

            1. And this…

          3. Universal suffering***


          4. And did those in the gulags vote, too? Or do they need to get their rights restored once they are released. Bwahaaha, released.

        3. Hey, remember that time when you lamented that Cubans might get some measure of wealth and freedom and lose their “authenticity”? That was pretty cool.

        4. “universal suffrage”

          Is that the term used when central planning and price controls severely limit the amount of food on store shelves so everyone goes hungry? If only America could emulate the spectacularly successful policies of the glorious USSR.

          1. Is that the term used when central planning and price controls severely limit the amount of food on store shelves so everyone goes hungry?

            Top Men did not go hungry.

        5. The “historical fact” is that Wyoming women had the right to vote and to run for office before any woman in the Soviet Union. Wyoming women have been running Wyoming since 1869. Wyoming is called the Equality State for a damn good reason.

          So there!

          Unless you mean “suffrage” as poverty, gulags and tyrannical despotic rule – suffer for EVERYONE. Then, you socialists are winners – your country always beats out a free market country.

        6. Socialism is only good for universal suffering.

          1. B-b-but at least under socialism, everybody is EQUAL! Not like in capitalist societies, where most people get the basic necessities plus a few luxuries here and there, but a few people get way, way more… That’s totally not fair!

            1. In capitalism, man exploits his fellow man. In communism, it’s the other way around.

        7. Are we really going to blame inner city poverty on free-market capitalism? Is that really how you want to proceed?

          1. Of course–that’s how leftists/progressives roll. Blame every possible bad thing on free-market capitalism.

            Asteroid hits Earth? Free-market capitalism is at fault.
            God comes down and floods the whole planet to wipe it clean? Free-market capitalism is at fault (even if most leftists don’t believe in God).
            Space aliens from a neighboring galaxy raid us for our natural resources? …You get the picture.

            1. Asteroid hits Earth? Free-market capitalism is at fault.

              I thought that one was global climate change and dinosaurs died. Oh yea, climate change is always the fault of the free-market. Carry on.

        8. “Like when I said the Soviet Union put the first man in space or that they implemented universal suffrage before the United States?”

          Demonstrably incorrect. The US implemented universal suffrage in 1919. The USSR wasn’t founded until 1922 after the success of the Bolsheviks in the Russian Civil War. And while their “constitution” had equal rights in theory, in practice nobody except the Party leadership had any rights at all and women still faced serious discrimination.

          1. Yeah but they put a guy in space!

            1. Nah, they used a cut rate version of the production crew Hollywood later used for the moon landing.

              1. They were true pioneers of film making, just watch any comprehensive film history film.

          2. The US didn’t really have national universal suffrage until the 1960s, thanks to Jim Crow laws.

            1. Yes, big government was a problem then. Let’s have more of it.

        9. “Like when I said the Soviet Union put the first man in space or that they implemented universal suffrage before the United States?”

          Yeah, I’m sure your votes and voices are guaranteed to count in communist nations.

          I heard the Ottoman Empire welcomed some Jewish refugees. Wow, the middle east must be a paradise for displaced Jews!

          Stop being so disingenuous.

        10. ‘Universal suffrage’? You misspelled suffering.

        11. There is no free market in this country thanks to assholes like you. You really are to blame for most of what is wrong here.


        12. say that free-market capitalism is the bestest ever might want to look at the inner cities or the Mississippi Delta before they start crowing about how unregulated markets and trickle-down economics are clearly the way to go. It’s really your triumphalism in the face of what I see as meager empirical data that I criticize.

          Oh, the amount of b.s. and factual errors you manage to pack into a a few sentences:

          (1) The Mississippi Delta and inner cities are creations of Democrats and the American left; they are in no way consequences of free markets.

          (2) Free market capitalism is not a right wing ideology, it is a liberal (in the classical sense) ideology.

          (3) “Trickle down economics” and “unregulated markets” are straw men created by progressives, not actual principles of free market capitalism.

          (4) As an immigrant who has seen and experienced American inner cities, the American South, and the East Bloc, let me tell you: no matter what spot you pick in the US, it is still infinitely preferable to anything socialism and communism have ever achieved in this world.

        13. Trolltastic

        14. When you can say that “they [the USSR] implemented universal suffrage..” you’re pretty much admitting that economic education is the least of your needs. The notion that this is an historical fact is conclusive evidence that someone has been tearfully re-reading old copies of the Daily Worker.

    3. “So, maybe this close-mindedness that you’re talking about, David, isn’t just for cynical Leftists who think politics is bought-and-paid-for.”
      Absolutely. I have yet to see an exception – to there being obnoxious close-minded ignoramuses – in any given group.

    4. Ah, but the Sanctimonious Left does actually make icons of the mass murderers responsible for those millions of deaths. Let that goddamned Che t-shirt fade into embarassed history, and I’ll stop accusing you of being an accessory to genocide. Stop championing swine like Hugo Chavez, and I’ll start cutting you-all some slack. The history of the 20th Century is full of Leftwing Pash-notes to ‘Revolutionaries’ who turned out to be monsters.

    5. I have to say, the comment chain that followed your post pretty much proved your point.

      Personally, I’m a “Liberal” in the non-American definition of the sense, meaning I am Liberal but not a Democrat. Free trade, free speech, individual rights, universal suffrage, etc. etc. Evidently that makes me a Libertarian. Who knew?

      You and I almost certainly wouldn’t agree on most things, but I can merrily concede that there is nothing inherently *murderous* about socialism. Just that many of it’s tenets go against what I find a desirable state for a human being (ergo, myself) to be in. I think that’s enough to argue about.

      I don’t actually visit Reason very much, or at least not as much as I would like to, because I feel that Libertarians really ought not be flirting with Conservatives. Fundamentally, you can’t be for individual rights or free markets or even free speech and be a Conservative since undue respect for tradition or social mores is the bane of individual liberty – back to my original supposition, markets aint so free if you want to legislate my porn, movies, video games and booze, you bastards.

      Anyway, I would REALLY like it if Reason wasn’t so strapped for content that it had to continually push obviously Conservative thinking or opinion pieces.

      1. And of course, being a Liberal, you would never, ever, in a million years refer to conservatives or libertarians as “fascists,” right? No liberal, left-leaning or socialist person has ever, ever resorted to that slur, have they?

        1. Apparently, the rage triggered by the word “liberal” made you ignore the “non-American definition” part (which is actually closer to libertarian), as well as the rest of the post.

          1. “Liberal” in the non-American sense means libertarian? I am not sure that’s true. Would you consider Britain’s Liberal Democrats to be a libertarian party?

            “Liberal” in the 19th Century sense, however, would make your point.

            1. Jesus Christ Number 2.

              Here’s a link to Red State where you’ll be more comfortable:


              1. Yea, GroupThink or GTFO!

        2. In fact, it’s ironic. Fascism and naziism are both just as much products of the left as Soviet communism. I don’t justify that statement by merely pointing at the National SOCIALIST party name; research it, it’s fascinating. Quotes by nazis regarding economic issues are literally indistinguishable from those by communists.

      2. “I can merrily concede that there is nothing inherently *murderous* about socialism.”

        Actually, I’m not so sure. Socialism concentrates authority in the State, and a powerful State may not HAVE to be murderous, but that has been the way to bet, historically.

        1. Socialism requires ultimate control of everything and the only way that is possible is under threat of death since most people do not like to be controlled. The socialist state then has to implement its greatest threat where lots of people have to be repressed and killed by socialist states to keep the rest in line. its the nature of the beast. and socialism is not liberal due to its need to control everything. Liberals confuse tolerance for differing opinions by controlling differing opinions through the state, hence liberal eventually become socialist.

        2. At the very best, it’s a state comfortable with the large scale theft of private property, which inevitably leads to other human rights abuses eventually.

        3. That’s akin to saying ‘there is nothing inherently evil about slavery, some slaves were well-kept!’… There are some kinder, gentler socialist regimes out there, but they all have potential to go bad at a moments notice, and the people can’t seize the power back to protect themselves when it inevitably does.

          I can give you my wallet and a gun because you promised you would take care of me. I can only blame myself when you walk away with my wallet defended with the gun.

        4. That’s akin to saying ‘there is nothing inherently evil about slavery, some slaves were well-kept!’… There are some kinder, gentler socialist regimes out there, but they all have potential to go bad at a moments notice, and the people can’t seize the power back to protect themselves when it inevitably does.

          I can give you my wallet and a gun because you promised you would take care of me. I can only blame myself when you walk away with my wallet defended with the gun.

        5. “a powerful State may not HAVE to be murderous, but that has been the way to bet, historically.”

          Here’s how I look at it: constructing a super-powerful government is like leaving a live grenade sitting on a public sidewalk. Now, most people who saw a grenade sitting on the ground would probably call the police. But if you just leave it out there, a bad person is going to pick it up sooner or later and most likely do something bad with it.

          Some big government policies may not be a direct gateway to totalitarianism… But (all jokes aside) if a despot of Hitler or Stalin caliber managed to get into the oval office, they would find all these neat little tools at their disposal to fuck with the populace.

          I think someone on here said this once: “Don’t build the implements of a police state and leave them laying around.”

        6. The goal of socialism is for the state to provide it’s citizens with everything.

          Except the ability to refuse.

      3. Why are you grouping social Conservatives with fiscal Conservatives? Perhaps the “liberal” sources you trust for news haven’t told you there’s a difference. Or perhaps it doesn’t fit in with the tidy narrative you’ve constructed.

      4. The things you listed about legislating your stuff doesn’t seem to be much of a conservative thing

      5. The things you listed about legislating your stuff doesn’t seem to be much of a conservative thing

      6. True Socialism (none of this pussified welfare state shit) is pretty much always going to require murder, because people aren’t going to just hand over everything they own and sell themselves to slavery voluntarily, and given the enormity of what is demanded, threats of violence alone aren’t going to work on everyone, and once a few disobey with impunity, the rest will follow.

        I guess you could have nice de jure socialism where everyone ignores the government’s ludicrous diktats, which is de facto not socialism, but de facto socialism is always murderous socialism.

      7. ‘markets aint so free if you want to legislate my porn, movies, video games and booze, you bastards’……

        No one regulates that shit more than progressives. Along with every other goddamn thing that exists. You and your leftist buddies also spent the 20th century murdering over a hundred million people, and oppressing over a billion more. And now you’re all working round the clock trying to re-establish that death grip on humanity.

        So there is little ‘libertarian’ about you. Oh, and NAMBLA hates conservative values too.

      8. I don’t actually visit Reason very much, or at least not as much as I would like to, because I feel that Libertarians really ought not be flirting with Conservatives….

        Anyway, I would REALLY like it if Reason wasn’t so strapped for content that it had to continually push obviously Conservative thinking or opinion pieces.

        Yeah, that’s why most of the real libertarians have already fled, and with each passing day the comment snark turns more partisan and less… intellectually honest?

        It’s going to continue. I personally complained to Matt Welch, and rather than getting a bunch of justifications in response (as I expected), I got a flat denial that any such shift was taking place. The current editorial staff are quite oblivious to what they’re doing and how awful it is.

        1. Obviously conservative? By what standard? Anyone else exhausted by this “I quit” syndrome expressed by the previous comments? An article may have a slant, but Reason is the only website that affords dissident liberal viewpoints the same publishing rights as any other viewpoint would receive on the web. Unfortunately for lefties, many of the presumptions necessary for leftist policies are outrageous or anti-free market; accordingly, the articles with those faulty presumptions (such as Big Gov equals prosperity, the New Deal was net positive for the country, market regulation is good and fair, etc) are saved for more anti-critical and trusting readerships. Often, backing away from someone’s critiques unchallenged is viewed as a “morally superior move” by progressives; after all, they know best. In my view, this is debate-cowardice and laziness.

          You may have noticed, or may not have, the one commonality amongst the commentariat here is the scrutiny that is applied to each article. In my experience, there have been thorough and robust debates within certain threads. I dont see threads shamelessly endorsing what you may call “conservative” articles; I fully believe there are enough contrarians here to keep everyone honest.

      9. Anyway, I would REALLY like it if Reason wasn’t so strapped for content that it had to continually push obviously Conservative thinking or opinion pieces.

        You seem to be thinking in a false dichotomy of American liberals vs. American conservatives. In fact, those terms aren’t even particularly well defined because both really cover loose coalitions of different groups. American “liberals” are an odd mix of progressives, social libertines, democratic socialists, lawyers, academics, and doctors. American “conservatives” are an odd mix of social conservatives, small government free market advocates, religious nuts, and classical liberals.

        American “liberals” are almost universally hostile to libertarian principles. Among American “conservatives”, the social conservatives and religious nuts are a lost cause, but there is at least some population of people who agree on the importance of free markets, individual responsibility, and small government.

    6. When an American university adopts a policy declaring opposition to free markets to be “hate speech,” the denial of liberty of contract to be a “microaggression,” and requiring “trigger warnings” before discussions of Marxism so that children of Cuban refugees and of those who escaped from behind the Iron Curtain do not “relive” their cultural “traumas,” then you can complain. Until then, your equivalency argument carries no weight.

    7. Agreed. Not sure why libertarians more closely identify with conservatives and consistently attack liberals. Many conservatives spout they like ‘small government’ except feel we need to spend more on the military, should regulate doctors all the way down to what they tell women, when, and to even require invasive probes placed in women’s bodies. They like ‘local’ control except for the many GOP state legislatures that have passed laws telling communities they can’t ban fracking, they can’t make local environmental laws, can’t have more stringent gun laws, etc. There really is no more ‘Goldwater’ libertarian conservative – it’s just which parts of government they like. ‘Small gov’t conservatives’ have also mostly supported the 10X increase in border patrol agents. Meanwhile of course the liberals would spend more on education, protection of the environment, job training etc. which are also ‘big government’. But the liberals don’t want to get in people’s bedrooms, generally want less spending on enforcement of ineffectual drug laws, support less spending on farm and fossil fuel subsidies, would let free market pricing reign in mining royalties. So it’s basically a ‘pick your poison’ kind of world. In terms of his statements about religion, I think it fair when one side says ‘well Leviticus says this’ to point out some of Jesus’ teachings of tolerance, helping the poor, etc….cherry picking the bible is hypocritical no matter who does it.

      1. “Not sure why libertarians more closely identify with conservatives and consistently attack liberals.”

        Because modern “Liberals” are consistently illiberal Statists.

        1. That still doesn’t explain conservatives getting a pass on their revealed preference for authoritarianism.

          1. Who is giving them a pass here? Perhaps you have a point on a few social issues like so cons. Progressives (or liberals) are almost exclusively authoritarian today.

            1. There mere fact there is that well recognized distinction of “so-con” (which really means authoritarian) says they are not getting a pass.

              There are quite literally large swaths of the political left who lead quite “conservative” personal lives – married, faithful, religious, clean cut, law abiding, etc – but they are never referred to as being conservative.

          2. Conservatives lost the debate once they caved to FDR. What “conservative” isn’t just a Democrat who goes to church?

          3. They don’t get one. Here. In the Establishment Media, conservatives who are authoritarians get a ‘pass’ only in that the Left never gets around to criticizing their authoritarianism. They’re too busy attacking them for being Relgious Nuts.

            1. Why would they attack their authoritarianism when they are simpatico on it?

          4. They don’t. Which is part of why Boehner was forced out. Just like Cantor got primaried out last year. It isn’t everything, but it’s a start. When was the last time the progressives got rid of ANYONE for being a vile oppressive shitheel?

          5. I grew up in the Bible Belt when the Religious Right was strong.

            This “pass” you speak of doesn’t exist. What’s really going on is that social conservatism is in retreat. They don’t have the power to force their values down other people’s throats, so they aren’t treated as a threat.

            On the other hand, progressives are currently on the attack.

            When the pendulum swings the other way and social conservatives return to power and begin shoving their values down others’ throats again, libertarians will speak out against them as usual.

            There is no “getting a pass.” It’s just that the threat is coming from a different direction right now.

            1. Yep. in the 80’s I was no fan of Pat Robertson and company shoving their shit dowm everyone’s throats. Today i’m even less of a fan of Barack Obama and his ‘fundamental transformation’ of America.

      2. What fossil fuel subsidies are we talking about specifically? Are you confusing it with green energy? Because green energy is heavily subsidized for sure…not really aware of fossil fuels.

        1. Here’s more detail from a conservative/libertarian site:…..stry-lobby

          Here’s another $2B in subsidies:…..2-billion/

          Worldwide fossil fuels are subsidized (including gas price subsidies) to about $550B a year vs. $120B for green energy. This from an article in Forbes (can’t include a 3rd link)

          1. Ah those sweet little world wide chestnuts applied to U.S. subsidies. Here’s a hint: per unit of energy in the U.S. the amount of fossil fuel “subsidy” (read depletion allowance) isn’t even within an order of magnitude of so called Green energy subsidies. The WPT alone is HALF the wholesale cost of baseload coal.

            But keep current with those false equivalencies.

            1. That first website Taxpayers for Common Sense positively reeks of networked astroturf, and their board of directors includes Earl Devaney – the guy Obama chose to ‘oversee’ the ARRA – and Marion Edey “a lifelong environmental and social justice activist.”

              AZIndpendent isn’t.

              1. So don’t buy his nonsense that it is a “conservative/libertarian site” when it is nothing of that sort. It is plainly a progressive/environmentalist site.

                More evidence that not only do they think you evil, they also think that lying to you is acceptable.

                Service to the higher good, and all that…

              2. You misspelled ‘overseer’.

          2. Where is the 550B per year? Seems pretty high. This would be about the expense of the dod…i dont think that is the case

            Your own article says 67.5B over ten years. Are you making up non sense? I didnt even see the 120B either.

            If it is really 550B then your article about 2b more is not really intriguing

            Citation needed.

            1. Progressives consider things like allowing oil producers to use standard depreciation schedules and not placing carbon taxes on fossil fuels as ‘subsidies’. So I generally tune out when they spew that sort of bullshit.

              1. You also need to assume that the primary purpose of the U.S. Navy is to protect old shipments.

                1. Oil shipments

          3. Just go to the Wikipedia article, it lists all the numbers.

            In 2013, the US “subsidized” fossil fuels by $3.2 billion and renewable energy by $7.3 billion. I put “subsidize” in quotes, because as far as fossil fuels are concerned, those “subsidies” are little different from the kinds of tax breaks lots of other industries also get (depreciation, R&D, etc.).

            In any case, renewable energies are less than 1/10th of total US energy production, so that means that renewable energies are subsidized at least 20 times as much as fossil fuels.

      3. Not sure why libertarians more closely identify with conservatives and consistently attack liberals.

        Probably because the chief threat from conservatives is a return to 1950’s US values, whereas the chief threat from the left is a return to 1950’s USSR values.

        1. That is the reply of the week. Mind if I borrow that one?

      4. should regulate doctors all the way down to what they tell women, when, and to even require invasive probes placed in women’s bodies


        When will the progressivetarians realize that abortion is an open issue in libertarianism?

        But the liberals don’t want to get in people’s bedrooms, generally want less spending on enforcement of ineffectual drug laws, support less spending on farm and fossil fuel subsidies, would let free market pricing reign in mining royalties.

        Citation fucking needed.

        1. Should’ve gone with the trendier hashtag #ShoutYourMurder

        2. When will the progressivetarians realize that abortion is an open issue in libertarianism?

          An “open issue” in what sense? I mean, there are different moral and political positions libertarians have on abortion. But the position Christian conservatives take is clearly not a libertarian position and is not compatible with libertarianism.

      5. I can only speak for myself, but I don’t “identify” with conservatives, or at least not most of the ones in the Republican party. I like smaller government, economic and personal freedoms, and gun rights. Since they sorta kinda believe in that, I consider them less evil than the liberals and progressive cluster fuck known as the Democratic party.

        1. The only thing the progs have going for them is that they don’t object to two hot chicks getting on each other. But when I want to watch, or get involved, the feminazi progs call it exploitation. So they really don’t even offer that.

          It doesn’t say much for the progressives when the republicans are becoming the party of tolerance for enjoying two hot chicks getting on each other.

          1. LOLOLOLOLOLOL

            Thank you, @Suicidy, for giving me the freedom to destroy my nasal passages with citric acid. I just squirted cold orange juice out my nose reading that.

    8. I’d rather see solutions that actually produce the desired results than adhere to either the vision of the conservative or the liberal.

      Practical solutions don’t usually end up looking anything like the theory that spawned them. You come up with an idea that you think will work, and give it a go. Experience with the actual results tells you how far off the mark you were and you adjust.

      The problem with socialist minded solutions is a failure by those on the left to adjust their ideas and solutions based upon real world results. This is why the plight of the poor gets worse when the left is successful in pushing more of those great society big government “solutions”.

      When people can’t make a decent living and live in high crime areas, I don’t give a damn about your ideology. Our public education sucks and is trapping people in poverty, get rid of it. Gun control gets innocent people killed, get rid of it. Our big government social safety net is trapping people in poverty, get rid of it.

      Poverty was on the decline in this country for decades before we started the war poverty in the sixties, and has gotten steadily worse since – it was a mistake, lets get rid of it.

      This isn’t an academic issue. These theoretical socialist ideas are ruining the quality of life for millions and hurt the poor the most. Get past your ideology and look at the results. Anyone that can’t do that is a damn fool.

      1. But why do you hate the poor?

        1. Cuase hez a Racists !!!!11!1

      2. Sure, though reason only allows two links: Though the IMF says fossil fuel subsidies are 10 times higher…..-says-imf.
        Wikipedia also has numerous citations that support the $500B figure. Oh, and in terms of what media conglomerates conservatives support, it’s almost all of them; but for on example – the DMCA was introduced by a Republican House member.

        My point was it’s not ‘Liberals are done debating’, it’s both sides. What I hate are neocons masquerading as libertarians. If you’re libertarian – be against all big government and be against both sides’ hypocrisies. I freely admitted both sides want to spend your dollars – it’s only a matter of where. I think of myself as an independent libertarian – I hate defense spending and endless welfare. I hate oil subsidies a I hate the federal college loan program that basically enables colleges able to charge higher tuition. I hate farm subsidies and many foreign aid programs. But both sides always only want to cut the other people’s spending – that’s why the Republicans now want to end the sequester on defense spending, but not on anythng else

        1. That’s good. And largely agree with your post

          I am still not buying that there is 500B in oil subsidies a year and 120B in fossil fuel. Think about it for a second…they spend roughly 4 trillion a year now. The main expenditures are defense, social security, medicaid/medicare, and welfare.

    9. That’s because it’s true. It’s a verifiable fact.

      This is usually what happens when you follow left-wing ideology to its logical end.

      Camps. Death. Misery. Loss of liberty.

    10. The problem is what you describe isn’t socialism.

      It’s capitalism with a lot of taxes.

      You have your own nomenclature wrong.

      Tell me, why do you WISH to associate yourself with an economic philosophy which is responsible for about 100 million deaths?

      You don’t have to. But you choose to.

      1. Is that directed at me?

      2. State Capitalism is Communism is International Socialism.

      3. The problem is what you describe isn’t socialism.

        You’re right: what Americans call “socialism” and “liberalism” is really closer to progressivism and the Bismarck-style welfare state. But it doesn’t really matter, because any of these ideologies are lethal when put into practice.

    11. AmSoc,

      I agree with the idea that your philosophy of welfare state socialism is horrible for the poor, and yet in developed countries like US, UK, Canada hasn’t resulted in Pol Pot, Shining Path, Castro-ist, or Maoist mass murder at those versions of socialism have. The fact that the developed world academic community continues to support such murderous madmen promotes some of the irrational lashing out at the few of you who are honest enough about your choice to force the individual to submit, serf-like, to a 51% majority-at least one time, which the socialist “one man, one vote, one time” unoficial motto comes from.

    12. Pierre Trudeau – Banada’s Worst Prime Minister (c) – cozied up to the Red Chinese and slobbered at Castro dyck, while doing everything he could to piss off our largest trading partner and protector – The USA.
      Just in case we have a zombie apocalypse and he rises from the dead, I have silver bullets, rings of garlic and sharp pointy stakes at the ready.

      1. Even under Conservative Stephen Harper, Canada is still pretty much a democratic socialism-filled country.

        I love the people up there, genuinely kind folks for the most part, but a lot of the things that Trudeau started are still in place (in some shape or form, anyways).

        Your beer kicks ass, though. Just hate having to go to a government-controlled liquor store to buy it lol

        1. We got rid of those a few years ago here in WA State. Our progs used that as a vehicle for massive new liquor taxes. ‘Just for three years’. Those taxes are now permanent.

    13. The same welfare state from the 1970’s that drove up the debt, deficit, made people dependent on government, shot up the crime rate in the inner cities etc.? “American socialist”? More like delusional, control freak, twat.

    14. But it is. And they are. And anyone who still follows that ideology is attempting to lead humanity down that same path. Sorry if the truth hurts.

      But that’s not even what this article was about.

    15. Here is the difference. We don’t think you actually want to kill another 100 million people. We just think that is the kind of thing that happens when you implement your ill conceived policies.

    16. I consider myself a libertarian, but I agree that there are plenty of right-wingers who are also ‘done debating’. (Certainly some of that is retaliatory in nature, but arguing over who hit whom first doesn’t get us anywhere), Consider Scott Walker on unions (totally evil; end of story) and most of the Republican candidates (especially Donald Drumpf) on immigration (immigrants are presumptively criminals who come here to collect welfare to buy guns to rob honest citizens in order to get money for drugs).
      But I would caution anyone who thinks that responses to tweets are representative of the general citizenry’s willingness to engage in civilized debate. In my case, I had a grandfather who emigrated from what is now Slovakia with an eighth grade education whom I admired as a prodigious autodidact. He also happened to be an old-fashioned Milwaukee ‘sewer socialist’, and I disagreed with him on that but first and foremost as far as I was and still am concerned he was a loving and lovable man. We live amid so many different kinds of mass media that we forget that persuasion can take place one on one. In fact, I suspect that as Jung said, “all that can really be accomplished is an infinitesimal step forward in the moral nature of the individual”, and that can best be achieved through the engagement of one individual with another.

  2. Dammit David, tell the kochs, I want my check NOW!

    1. You haven’t met your monthly quota of baby-seal-clubbing or orphan-enslavement

    2. I’m still waiting for my Exxon cheque I’ve been accused of getting.

      I do, however, get the occasional Google cheque for my blog; like every four years.

    3. Libertarians do the work for free, you know this.

      1. Well that starting orphan blood is a form of compensation. And the coupons for half off monocle polishing by starving orphans.

        1. ‘starving orphan blood’.

          My goddamn kingdom for an ‘edit’ button.

  3. I admit I was taken aback how quickly they deduced that my opposition to Obamacare was secretly because I don’t want poor people to get medical care.

    1. You’re being controlled by the evil Koch Bros

      1. It’s true. I hear they hired Charles Xavier to use Cerebro to do it.

    2. Years ago, I unfriended a guy I’d known for years who kept posting links like some Mother Jones 10 point list of why Republicans opposed Obamacare. Number 10 was, “Republicans don’t want poor people to have healthcare.”
      There’s no point in engaging anyone who could say that with a straight face.

      1. It’s true, though. I still long for the good ol’ days of 2008, when the poor were dying in the streets right before my eyes as I walked to work.

      2. At that point, I always say – “you’re right. I DON’T want poor people to have health care. Darwinism at work and the poor mess up the gene pool”.

        I wear my psychopath sticker proudly

      3. I did the same thing recently with a guy who told me I hated the poor and wanted them to starve in the streets because I opposed a minimum wage hike to $15/hour, even though just a few days before I clearly spelled out my position, and to which he replied “I won’t respond because I can’t.”

        Then he had the temerity to say that I, as a stay-at-home-dad, am “being supported” by my “well-paid wife.” And then did a whole host of the things listed in the article: criticize me because I’m NOT poor (“It’s easy for you to tell the poor to go fuck themselves while sitting in your ivory country house”), told me that I clearly wish to protect the ultra-rich at the expense of everyone else . . .

        You can’t debate with these people. Ideas are meaningless; only doctrine matters.

        1. If your cheap-ass friend is not supporting $1,000 minimum wage, he is just a crypto-schill for Biggie Big.

      4. I love my Obamacare! And the shitbag coverage that costs $700 per month that I won’t purchase so I no longer have any health coverage for the first time in my life!

      5. Everyone should be able to get the health care they want to pay for.

    3. “I don’t want poor people to get medical care”

      Ditto. Two FB (former) friends were discussing their disbelief that anyone wouldn’t support Obamacare passage and breezily attributed it to racism.

      1. That racism jab seems to get used for everything these days.

    4. Yeah even if you explain logically that through free market competition, costs would get driven down… the libtards still say you’re a hatah

    5. Also you hate women and want them to be chattel.

  4. i was thinking pretty much this very thing while scrolling thru facebook this morning.

  5. Modern liberals say they’re pro-choice but force someone else to pay for their abortion.

    They also say they celebrate diversity but mock those with different views.

    1. And now some liberals at the staff of Salon wants to go a step too far from what I read on Ralph Retort and Chateau Heartsite.

    2. They also think every aspect of life should be regulated by the loving arm of the government, with the sole exception of abortion.

      1. Don’t you worry, before you know it they will be deciding who needs to be aborted no matter what the parents say. “Before you know it,” what am I thinking? The Chinese Socialist Utopia already did it.

      2. Any personal freedom issue like ‘abortion rights’ is just a loss leader to get people through the door so they can upset them on a full Marxism protection plan. Sure, not everyone will buy that. But they do have a pull through rate.

        1. ‘upsell’

    3. They also say they celebrate diversity but mock those with different views.

      It’s even worse than that. They claim to celebrate diversity, then call it a racist microagression to inquire about someone’s diversity.

  6. “What conservatives (and some libertarians) possess are not arguments but corrupt and nefarious ambitions.”

    “and some libertarians”??? Just what kind of libertarians are tolerated by the left?

    1. Dude, did you miss out the libertarian socialist write-up about Bernie Sanders two weeks ago? Sanders is a socialist libertarian – didn’t you know?

      1. Haha yea…im not sure one can really advocate for socialism while being a libertarian.

        1. pretty sure its a joke

          1. Terry Nichols never jokes, dude. He trolls us for votes.

          2. I know it was a joke i wasnt referring to your comment. Ive actually seen people argue that bernie is a libertarian

            1. Some of us have been around long enough to remember “The Libertarian Case for Barack Obama.”

              1. Who could forget such prescient insights as “…Obama clearly has more mastery of the details of being a head of state…”

              2. That was a thing? Seriously?

      2. Abbie Hoffman is in that set too. Has to be true, it was on Wikipedia.

      3. Bernie’s a libertarian that wants to use government to coerce and involuntarily take hard-earned money from “the rich” and also he’s against gun rights.

        But hey he wants to stop wars and supports same-sex marriage so he’s a swell guy lol

    2. I agree. Real liberals could believe that a hand full of conservatives are merely misguided, but it takes a special kind of sicko to be a libertarian at this point.

  7. One of the biggest faults of this article is that Mr. Harsanyi does the same thing he condemns the left for doing, in that he’s just as stubborn and inflexible as they are. This is one of the reasons why people truly in the middle hate politics and politicians, because both sides are unwilling to admit that they may be wrong and the other may be right, for fear that they may lose credibility with their own side. Everyone with strong views is like this, but he can’t acknowledge his, and the right’s, own culpability here. He, and conservatives like him, also question the motives of liberals, and mix morality and politics. To get a great example of this, just turn on Faux News, and you’ll hear insults and ad hominem attacks against liberals all day. You’ll also hear people being called “Godless” and “morally-bankrupt” for not towing the conservative religious line on issues like abortion, gay marriage, religion in general and the death penalty. Conservatives are second to none when it comes to hurling insults; the king of all, Trump The Hump. Harsanyi, before you throw stones, take a good look at yourself.

    1. I think you just proved the authors point. Congrats.

      Curious to how much you actually watch faux news? Ive seen it a few times and have not really seen all thwse insults and ad hominems you claim. Because they discuss stuff you may not like to hear doesnt make it false necessarily. Do they sensationalize at times..sure

      1. ‘Faux News’ actually allows dissenting opinions regularly, and FNB gave Stossel and Kennedy their own shows.

    2. Attributing the worst motives to people who disagree with you is part of human nature. It transcends political labels, I agree.

      But the Left is by far the worst offender at this point in time — both because of the megaphone of social media and because of the complete unmooring of traditional media from any standard of journalistic ethics.

      Yes, it wasn’t too long ago that questioning the wisdom of the War on Terror got you labeled a “traitor” by the right. But they never sought out businesses to destroy or threatened to burn their opponents’ houses down.

      1. Freedom Fries!

      2. nor did they threaten to put their “shoe to their neck” as both Obama and Kruschev threaten to do

        1. Google isn’t cooperating with me on this.

    3. Where was it said in the article that conservatives dont also do these things at times? I didnt see that claimed

    4. As usual with posts like this, my first thought is, “If I notice any conservatives around here, I’ll be sure to let them know.”

    5. Before you ever post here again, learn to write coherently.

      It’s ” . . . . and conservatives like he is”.

    6. You just said ‘Faux News’.

      To be ignored.

    7. C-

      Just plain lazy troll work. It would work at drudge, but here it’s just pitiful.

  8. In fairness, many conservatives have the same problem (try talking to a Donald Trump fan). The prevalence of echo chambers in social media and the inability of our education system to teach students how to debate (you don’t want to trigger someone with conflicting views) have left people with an absence of critical thinking skills.

    1. Donald Trump supporters aren’t conservative, unless we’ve changed that definition to mean pro-gun control, pro-choice, pro-higher taxes, and pro-single payer.

      Trump supporters are just xenophobic assholes.

      1. I just wish there was a conservative candidate who supported my xenophobic assholery.

      2. I just wish there was a conservative candidate who supported my xenophobic assholery.

      3. this. Donald trump is espousing many of the views of bernie sanders. Funny how supporters of each think their guy is the best while the other and his supporters are buffoons.

      4. S-A-F-E-T-Y dance assholes . . .

      5. Oh, I agree Trump isn’t conservative (well, he’s probably not, the only issue he has really said much about is immigration, so there are a lot of unknowns regarding him). But you’d only know that if you read the news, and since most of his supporters appear illiterate…

        Typically the only thing his supporters talk about is immigration, though. I suppose his immigration plan is a conservative one (even if conservative icons like George W Bush and Ronald Reagan had the opposite view), and they are willing to overlook the other issues because of that. I’ve had Trump supporters accusing me personally of wanting to destroy my country and wondering what financial interests I have that cause me to think we should allow in more immigrants.

        1. Is this a good time to discuss my illegal/progressive exchange program? It works like this: for every illegal we keep, we deport one progressive citizen to a marxist paradise where they get to enjoy all the camaraderie with their Marxist brethren. This will pay for itself as we will ‘redistribute’ the wealth of the progressive exchangees. They won’t need it anymore as their new socialist homeland will care for them fully.

          Everybody wins!

    2. The big difference is that more Progs identify their morality/ethics with their political positions/institutions they support than your average Con or Libertarian. Most of the latter naturally want smaller gov, that attitude betrays their ranking of the importance of gov in their lives in that they would rather do other things than have to deal with the gov. Proggies want the gov in most every facet of everybody’s life so gov/politics are more important to them.

      Cons and liberatarians mostly just want to get on with their own lives, while Proggies want to continually meddle in your life…for your own good.

      1. FREEDOM is the moral choice.

    3. Its funny that libertarians have worshipped the words of reason so much, that by virtue of osmosis it seems, they’ve come to accept the magic of critical thinking, without have a single clue as to what the words mean beyond having some connection to logic.

      1. This post is completely baffling. What are you talking about?

        1. Think she sayz we need to “check our privilege” or whatever Huffpo tells it.

    4. Trump drives the PC crowd insane. There’s a sizable fanbase for that.

  9. Sort of ot but in my view liberals have such consternation for libertarians despite libertarians having little influence in gov because they have to justify their bigger and ever increasing govt without being able to use an army of strawmen on social issues like they can with conservatives

    1. I’ve seen comments on threads at Huffpo, Democratic Underground, and other fetid swamps that essentially say that Libertarian’s opposition to the welfare state is a smokecreen for racism. It’s along the lines of “Libertarians are disproportionately white, social program beneficiaries are disproportionately people of color, therefore they’re racist bigots.” They’ll bust out their moronic “arguments” and strawmen against us in a heartbeat if they feel the need.

      1. IRL I’ve encountered that attitude many times. My strategy in dealing with it is to state my preference for abolishing the corporate welfare state before eliminating the social welfare state. This causes the collective heads of progressives to implode. Because corporate welfare queens tend to be white cis-shitlords it’s hard to accuse me of racism when I want to take away their goodies.

        1. it’s hard to accuse me of

          That has never been an obstacle for them.

  10. From my perspective, growing up in a liberal church (and this may be exactly the same if you were a liberal growing up in a conservative church, I honestly don’t know); liberals tend to want to shut you up because your views are just bad and evil and not goodthink. The middle ground liberals in my church were the people who have far left views these days, and literally stopped my parents from helping the church multiple times because they disagreed about politics. It was sad and stupid, since my parents are both very capable people who, when allowed, helped the church to grow and succeed. I met a very few liberals in my life that can honestly engage in debate, and many more conservatives and especially libertarians that are open minded and will not result to ad hominem quickly. For instance, if I were to debate my very conservative uncle or my cousin on any given topic that I am more socially liberal on, from abortion to prayer in school, we could easily have a reasonable debate, since they were raised to be curious about what other people thought and to seek out knowledge. A lot of the younger leftists in my church growing up (those people under 55, who weren’t around in the 60s, but venerated those who were) never ever questioned the received wisdom and treated their version of leftism like a religion. I’m certain there are people on the right who do the same thing, I just have not met as many of them.

    1. The Liberal Left is suffering from long term shock. For a few decades, between the late ’60’s and mid ’90’s, they had a substantial lock on the news media, and this on the terms and limits of debate. For many of them the revalation that enough people disagreed with them to make Rush Limbaugh a rich man was a nasty shock. They’ve lost the ability to debate, because for a while it looked to them like they didn’t need it. Now they are at least dimly aware that there are great masses of people who not only don’t see their moral and intellectual superiority, but think that they are goddamned fools.

      Hence the outrage.

    2. Who was it that said: “I never argue with mystics”?

      1. Dr. Strange?

      2. Rasputin?

    3. My impressions and experience as well.

      The best conversations I ever had were with conservatives/libertarians.

      Not liberals.

      The main difference is the former don’t think you’re an idiot entering the conversation. Liberals always presume to be in the right to begin a debate.

      1. Sorry. My mistake. There was one liberal who I respected greatly and vice-versa. A fan of Gramsci no less. We had great discussions on Western/Roman/Italian history. A most generous and gracious fellow.

  11. Never underestimate the ability of people to ignore reality while defending their political opinions.

  12. A nice Friday Funny featuring Creepy Popey and Liberellas “done debating” would be nice about now.

  13. “implemented universal SUFFERING”


  14. To the author’s point, liberals are definitely “done debating”. They can’t stand any disagreements. This morning’s local newspaper ran an Associated Press article about Wesleyan University students (Middletown CT campus) who want to boycott their campus newspaper and defund it because the paper had the temerity to run an opinion piece questioning the accomplishments of the Black Lives Matter movement.…..-newspaper

    1. What’s becoming less and less debatable is that progs have devolved into stereotypical petty tyrants and little else.

      1. You say that now, but you’ll think differently after some family in Indiana doesn’t want to go to an imaginary gay pizza wedding!

  15. Gosh, I had no idea I was so many things looters hate. But I must point out that Americans use the term liberal to mean “closet communist” or “closet socialist”. In the literate English-speaking world the word means neo-libertarian or free marketeer. Why Americans still misuse the word harks back to the late 1930 formation of the wet American Liberal Party organized by Samuel Harden Church. It forced the Dems to come out for repeal and God’s Own Party has since associated “liberal” with Satanism and Possession by the Demon Rum.

    1. To be fair, Debbie Wasaman Shultz, the Chairwoman of the DNC, is unable to articulate a difference between the modern Democratic party and socialism.

      Also, at the Democratic National Convention back in 2012, the audience booed God. So, um, there’s that…

      1. It doesn’t say much for the DNC that they have such a vile, loathsome, nasty idiot as their Chairman (yes, ChairMAN. As in ‘It’s not your Chairwoman……it’s a MAN, baby!’).

    2. It only goes back to the 1930s. See “Conservative Manifesto” written by Democrat and Republican opponents of the New Deal.

  16. Liberals pretty much give up once I bring govt force and coercion into the argument.

    Liberals: Do you want poor people to starve? That’s immoral?
    Me: I’ll tell you want true immorality is: If you can only feed poor people with a govt gun pointed at someone else’s head.

    1. Why do you need government guns to protect your private property then? Surely that is less important than the problem of starvation.

      1. If I hire a private security company to protect my property why do I also need to pay for your government guns ?

        1. Government guns, are the only moral guns comrade.

          1. Good news comrade! Starvation outlawed at last party meeting! Now those who starve will be executed for defying State! No more starvation!

      2. Because I want poor people to suck it and die. Die quickly. Once they die, I won’t need govt guns.

        Got it?
        They can suck your dick or suck it. As long as by sucking, they die quickly.

      3. As you usual you miss the point

        1. But the point is so clearly explained as government programs you like are OK while government programs you like are not only bad, but illegitimate and probably shouldn’t be open to debate.

          1. Um what is your point? You clearly dont understand that limited govt does not equal no govt.

            One involves violation of one s liberty (property example) and the other is forcing otherd to do your bidding

            1. How is a law against trespassing not force?!

              1. You’re like a caricature of yourself sometimes.

          2. 1: SJW’s ALWAYS lie
            2: SJW’s always double down
            3: SJW’s always project

            You just exhibited rule #3 Tony. =)

            1. I thought it was “1: SJW’s are mammals.”

              1. Never proven.

        2. Tony has been trolling us here before “trolling” became common place.

          In fact, Mr. Twitter took one good, long look at Tony’s face and said – “that’s not human! That’s a fucking freak! A fucking troll!!!!”.

          See what Tony did for humanity? He is the inspiration for the hit Twitter term: TROLLING

          1. The term has been around far longer than twitter has.

      4. Protecting others from acts of aggression is not the same as forcing others via gov to do something to make yourself feel all warm and fuzzy inside

      5. Protecting others from acts of aggression is not the same as forcing others via gov to do something to make yourself feel all warm and fuzzy inside

        1. It is the same, you just don’t want it to be. Police and courts aren’t any more free to taxpayers than public schools.

          1. Tony sez protecting the nation from crime and foreign invaders = feeding some homeless people and paying for a college student’s tuition.

            One is duty, the other is charity (welfare).

            1. I say feeding the poor is a duty as well. You’re just talking in circles.

              1. Then go fucking feed the poor shitbag !

                1. Res, that’s our job. Tony’s job is to lecture us. And pay for what he lectures us about.

              2. What are you doing to feed the poor?

                1. Just yesterday morning someone online told me that abortions would solve crime problems AND hunger. I am still confused on his stance.

                  1. Where do you think those late term aborted organs go?

      6. Even poor people have private property. Why do you not want the government to protect their private property? Why do you hate poor people?

        1. Why is that the only interest you think government should care about? It’s so arbitrary.

          1. It’s only arbitrary to you, because you think governments should carte blanche to do whatever it wants if the theoretical end result some “optimal” society.

            The government has an obligation to keep the law, protect the nation, and keep others from hurting each other. There’s a reason why others have used home invasion as an example.

            Food stamps and single payer are acts of charity, and not an obligation. You resent us “picking and choosing” government programs, but that’s downright logical, since even in your perfect universe, some programs will be more wasteful and not cost effective than the others.

            If you approve of all aspects of government because it promotes the welfare of the people, something like Greece will happen.

            1. All I want is for you to defend your preferences in programs or the absence of programs on the merits of the outcomes. Stop telling me I favor force and coercion and you don’t. It’s a lie, and it’s your way of getting out of defending anything.

              1. Don’t tell us to stop telling you to shut up. You do favor force and coercion. Because you’re a cheap and whiny

              2. Stop telling me I favor force and coercion and you don’t.

                As a libertarian I only support force and coercion in response to the initiation of force and coercion.

                You want to initiate force and coercion to get your way.

                That is the difference.

      7. Starvation is cured best with strong private property rights.

      8. Who is starving in America?

        1. Not very many if you look at the recent obesity levels across the states and how they have sky rocketed since the 70s.

          I saw a TSA screener complain that passengers are upset with the scanners because the TSA guys can see too much. Where as the TSA guy said it might be a blessing if we lived in the 70s but with all the fat people going through security, he practically needs blinders to keep from going blind from all the fat and ugly.

  17. For the comments whining that conservatives do it too…fine yes they do. That doesnt detract from the point the article is making

  18. Progressives need this tactic. They demand the government use violence to redistribute goods – it makes it easier for them to advocate for this if everyone who doesn’t agree with them is a monster. Libertarians have no psychological need for the consent of the victim because they don’t create victims. Most progressives would have a hard to suppressing the last remnants of human decency if confronted with someone whom they genuinely respected and realized: if this person doesn’t agree with me, my philosophy demands that I threaten them with violence or lock them in a cage. It’s easier to just say that those who don’t fellate the state willingly are evil monsters.
    Also, religions always need infidels to either convert or behead.

  19. Well you’re certainly unhinged in some way.

    1. Hey Tony. David Harsanyi just wrote an entire article about you. =)

      1. Oh? I thought it was an article defending people who are in favor of happy fun good stuff and bitching about those mean liberals who use different words to describe those things.

  20. It’s not that you fail to adhere to liberal orthodoxy, it’s that you fail to clear a very low bar of intellectual seriousness (i.e., believing in basic scientific facts).

    1. Are you a scientist Tony ?

      1. Tony is the foul offspring of a science experiment gone awry.

        The smelly, putrid goop in the petri dish that learned to troll

      2. I’m scientifically literate.

        1. No you’re not. Science is not decided by consensus. Politics is decided by consensus. You may be politically literate, but you don’t know shit about science.

          1. You know like three cliches about science that serve you less well than simply being a complete idiot who knows he’s a complete idiot.

            1. So you have no response to what I actually said. I’ll take that as an affirmative.

    2. Leftist dogma=scientific fact.


    3. What science background do you have

      1. Very few people here are economists or political scientists, but they love to talk about how people should live and how economies should be structured.

        1. What does this have to do with science since you like to throw out one must be a scientist to have an opinion?

          How people should live? mean telling people how to live by not telling how to live?

        2. “how economies should be structured”

          Libertarians talk of how the economy should be allowed to structure itself through millions of voluntary transactions between consenting adults.

          YOU are the one who wants the economy to be structured. YOU are the one who wants politicians to impose rules on voluntary interactions between consenting adults. YOU are the one who wants those interactions to be policed. YOU are the one who wants to create a myriad of excuses for cops to fuck with people, and ultimately kill them.

          Why do you want the cops to kill people, Tony? I thought you hated it when cops did that. Yet you want the government to create rule upon rule upon rule that must be ultimately enforced by thugs with a badge and a gun. Why?

          1. Ouch. That’s going to leave a mark.

            1. Only after it bounces off. It certainly won’t sink in.

          2. You want all these same things, you just want a leprechaun to emerge in a sunny glade to grant you a magical exemption for all the uses of government force your system needs to employ, and from the reality that your system is every bit as much of an imposition as any other–only more so, because while people want my system, nobody really wants yours.

            Laissez-faire is the order you’re talking about, and it’s not a default system sprung from nature. It’s a choice; it employs force, and furthermore we’ve more or less tried it and found it to be a failure.

            1. Boy you have to go back hundreds of years – nay, thousands of years – before you can get a “see – you guys are just as bad as I am!”.

              You want to go back to use Jamestown and claim – see – the ancestors of James Madison used government force to start America. So I am justified in using government force for my pet projects too.

              You’re pretty pathetic.

            2. Tony, you are here. You are here, maybe quite fraudulently. After all – did your family pay the Native Americans for their land – or even ask them if they could move in?

              But what happened 500 years ago or 200 years ago is quite irrelevant now. Just because it was wrong back then – the use of government force and coercion – to create America – it is still wrong to use government force to redistribute America.

              The thing is you want to perpetuate that government force. You admit it was wrong back then, you know that it is wrong today. But you can’t get passed your own ideology so you come up with some hokey excuse.

              1. You’re not remotely understanding my points and are being unpleasant while engaging in this failure.

            3. Laissez-faire is the order you’re talking about, and it’s not a default system sprung from nature.

              That’s where you are wrong.

              it employs force

              How? Seriously, how?

              1. Only a moral retard like Tony would equate using force in defense of self and property to the initiation of force to redistribute goods. Treat him like any other whining scumbag – ignore him or simply tell him to fuck off and go on your way.

        3. Tony:

          Very few people here are economists or political scientists, but they love to talk about how people should live and how economies should be structured.

          This is the part where Tony tells you how retarded and backward you are for doing what he does constantly.

        4. ‘Political science’……….now it makes sense. You’re literate in progressivism. Which is what passes for science in what passes for your mind.

    4. The progressive method, tried and true for 100 years:

      1. create a hypothesis and imbue it with moral indignity. e.g. “the government must step in with the Great Society to end poverty.”
      2. start the experiment. Back it with lots of government force and money taken from citizens.
      3. watch the experiment fail. Insist that “not enough money was spent,” and insist that a new experiment be run with more money and more force. Repeat.

      Being a progressive means never having to say you’re sorry.

  21. American Socialist makes Forrest Gump look like Stephen Hawking.

    1. AmSoc makes an earwig look like Stephen Hawking.

  22. I though american socialist was going to be the only idiot troll on this threat. Then Tony showed up! Moar fun…!

    1. Tony and AmSoc prove that here ARE multiple flavors of shit.

  23. Maybe it is just me but i get the sense that Tony has a pretty terrible view of people such that people wont help each other unless from govt coercion. Though i am wondering if tony and his ilk are merely projecting their views onto others.

    1. That’s very common.
      I had a doofus on FB say I opposed charity b/c I didn’t want govt taking my money to feed his pet projects.
      It didn’t occur to him I might act charitably in my private life.
      Absolutely did not occur to him.

      1. Lol. All the hallmark of liberal progreasives…

        Making themselves feel good at others expense and no cost to themselves. Do as i say and not as i do

      2. Progtards don’t. Atheist progtards give the least of relative to those of theological conservative thought. Big surprise they are so obsessed with taking what others have and redistributing it. This is what passes for charity in their tiny minds.

    2. But I’ll bet Tony regularly attacks most groups that voluntarily helps people, like religious charities. The Catholic Church has all kinds of problems like gay priests raping little boys and a communist pope spreading misery, starvation and poverty, but Catholic Charities does actually do a lot of good work. As do many other religious charities with far less baggage. I’ll bet Tony and AmSoc would be the first ones in line to condemn them, strip them of their tax exemptions, confiscate their money and demand that ‘government take that over’.

  24. Maybe it is just me but i get the sense that Tony has a pretty terrible view of people such that people wont help each other unless from govt coercion. Though i am wondering if tony and his ilk are merely projecting their views onto others.

    1. Or, Tony & his ilk are just trying to get us all into Heaven.

      By freeing us from our selfish psychopathy of wanting to keep our stuff and by using govt coercion to make us feed the poor, Tony, in fact, is just helping us get into Heaven.

      1. “By freeing us from our selfish psychopathy of wanting to keep our stuff and by using govt coercion to make us poor, Tony, in fact, is just helping us get into Heaven.”

        Fixed it for you.

    2. If people were charitable enough to manifest a decent, prosperous society in which nobody needlessly suffers due to lack of wealth, we would never have needed to invent modern government in the first place. How sure can you be of a philosophy that relies so heavily on complete fantasy?

      1. So, you’re trying to claim you’ve created that society where no one needlessly suffers? You’ve got your food stamps and your health care and your job is done – correct?

        Then – why are Americans still starving and still dying? After all your government enforced altruism, you haven’t created your Utopia.

        If you had any successes under your own belt, you might be more believable. But you don’t – do you? Old people still don’t have enough, young people still starve and health care is still not improving the lives of the poor.

        It takes pure retardation to not wake up and smell the baba ganoosh.

        So take a look at your own house, fool. You haven’t cured anything and you haven’t done anything.

        1. Where are Americans actually starving these days? And I don’t mean missing a meal or being ‘food insecure’. And anorexics don’t count. Nor does being lost/trapped somewhere with no access to food. Or deranged transients without the presence of mind to seek out food.

      2. What are you doing to help others tony?

        1. He’s helping increase government force so we can be made to live the way he wants us to. That’s how he’s helping. I think he thinks we’re supposed to thank him for knowing what’s best for us.

  25. Tony makes Beaker from the Muppets look like Neil DeGrasse Tyson. – another public service announcement from Reasondamus.

  26. David, get with the program. They’re progressives, not liberals.

    1. And progressives are all about pogroms.

  27. One time, I logged into a very left-wing website (the Nation) and posted a very libertarian counter-argument to ObamaCare.

    Everyone of my posts were turned in by the PC Nazis and deleted. Not for profanity or violence or any of the usual DISGUS things that gets your posts removed. I was extremely aware to be very polite & civil.

    No, my posts were deleted because the Left-wing echo chamber likes to believe what it believes and will tolerate no dissent. From anyone. EVER.

    So I agree with the author.

    And I challenge any doubters here to post a libertarian counter argument to Salon or the Nation. They will boot your ass out of there so fast your head will swim.

    1. Tolerance means not tolerating intolerance, and any disagreement with leftist dogma is intolerant.

      1. It’s time to get crazy then. All out psychotic, civil disobedience, blocking traffic type of crazy.

        See – hard skills and tactics can be easily learned and copied. And if no one listens to us – we make them listen.

    2. Probably cause it makes them confront reality

    3. Bodica,
      Same thing happens on Mother Jones. They hate to be contradicted.

  28. All of the negatives Harsanyi ascribes to Liberals could equally be applied to ANY group at large (including Conservatives and Libertarians). Tribalism, cognitive dissonance, and group-think are HUMAN characteristics. It’s a testament to his narrow-fucking-mind and lack of introspection that he cannot see this.

    1. Talk about missing the point.

      The left doesn’t argue ideas. They argue people. Any debate with the left is simply an excuse for them to fellate the ad hominem fallacy. Principals, not principles.

      1. mmmm hmmm. Barack Obama! Ooogedy Boogedy! Muslim, Fascist, Nazi, Commie, Kenyan, socialist….etc… ad nauseam. And that was before he’d even taken the oath of office.

        Principles right?

        1. You need more than that. Harsanyi listed off a multitude of issues where the response is not to the idea, but to the person. You’ve got one. I’ll give you that. But that’s the only one that I can think of, and it’s not an argument I saw from a single libertarian. Only the right wing fringe.

          1. Come on sarcasmic… “right wing fringe” is another personal attack type pigeonholing maneuver popularly retreated to by many on the left rather than engaging on or continuing to engage on the substance of an issue. Why resort to it here?

        2. And you still missed the point. I can’t think of a single issue where the left doesn’t respond with a personal attack. That some on the fringe right personally attack Obama doesn’t negate that in the slightest.

          1. Fringe Right???? Move the goal post much?

            Against the war hippie? Why do you hate America?

            Pro Abortion…Baby Killer!

            Socialists are inherently pro mass-murder, of course (Read up thread).

            Feminist? Nope, FemiNazi!!!

            Progressives are Eeeeeeeville!!!!

            Leftist want to kill God and keep our children from praying in school!

            Illegal immigrants are either here to take our jobs or suckle off our welfare state!

            Reduce the size of the military??? Why do you hate America?

            Obamacare = Death Squads

            I could seriously go on all fucking day.

            1. Ummmmm, I’m not even going to comment.

              1. And I’m not even going to respond to you not responding to that comment.

                1. And i’m not……..oh never mind.

            2. You’re having a problem with facts it seems.

              Pro-abortionists for example …. kill babies.

              Every socialist state in recorded history from Egypt to North Korea resorts to mass-murder. The Soviet math genius Igor Shafarevich’s reference “The Socialist Phenomenon” goes into great detail to illustrate Socialism’s evils throughout recorded human history. And as it was repeated in his own Union of Soviet Socialist Republics nation.

              Criminal migrants can’t live off the $10 a day they earn sometimes, so of course have to suck off the public tit.

              The Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute was started by the ACA and given several billions of tax-payer dollars to start to find out how to best ration healthcare. All under the auspice of just trying to help find efficiencies of course. That’s what all “death panels” are of course. Like how the German National Socialist Workers Party made their nation more “efficient” with their “death panels”, as well.

              Could go on, but I think I’m just boring the informed at this point.

              1. In not very well informed, and you’re still boring! I kid,I kid.

            3. I could seriously go on all fucking day.

              Yeah. I’m sure you could go on all day presenting arguments that no libertarian has ever made and then being disappointment when no libertarian defends those arguments, all the while ignoring the point.

            4. You just proved his point…again

        3. What does this have to do with his point? Are you one of those two wrongs make a right kind of guys?

          1. No. I fucking despise hypocrisy and self righteousness. Unstirred pots too.

            1. It’s Tony’s brother…..

              1. No. When they finally take Tony into custody, ‘Eric’ will be revealed as one of Tony’s alters.

            2. Who is being hypocritical here? Everyone does it too is not only isnt a valid excuse.

        4. Every time someone on the right tried calling Obama those things, other conservative intellectuals took them to the woodshed. I have heard Charles Krauthammer and Brit Hume correct right-wing opiners very forcefully that “no, Obama isn’t a Nazi or a fascist or a commie or any of those things. Obama is a big government liberal, who believes government can and must do things . . .. “.

          So please, knock it off. Your selective perception is blinding you.

          And I have NEVER heard someone on the Left ever say – “no, libertarians are selfish haters of the poor”. EVER.

          So the moral equivalence argument is not working here, troll

          1. “are NOT selfish haters of the poor”. (Damn cat on the keyboard)

            1. Kitties do tend to commandeer the keyboard at times.

        5. Where did he say it was unique to liberals? I missed that one

    2. Despite your attempt at deflection it doesnt detract from the point the article is making.

      Everybody does it too isnt a valid counter argument unless the argument specifically says it is unique to so and so when that is false.

      The article never says it was unique to one group.

      1. I agree with Harsanyi about leftists. Many default to ad hominem attacks. My point is that most people do too, and it’s disingenuous to act as if this flaw is the cornerstone of only one group.

        1. It is also as you say laughably unintrospective. The entirety of “conservative” politics these days–a lot of which libertarianism overlaps with–is simply casting liberals as the devil and leaving it at that.

          1. No, progressives do that.

          2. I think you are projecting here

        2. Where was this claimed? It does not detract from the point of the article but if it makes you feel better have at it

        3. Is answering an ad hom attack with an insult still considered an ad hominem?

        4. Where was this was stated it is only one group? there are also magnitudes. You seem fixated on something that doesnt exist

    3. “It’s a testament to his narrow-fucking-mind and lack of introspection that he cannot see this.”… You did right here what he’s talking about and I’m not sure you even realize it.

    4. QED. Harsanyi got you to a “T”.

  29. I generally go along with the American use of “liberal” to mean a social-Democrat, but not when they advocate censorship, the very antithesis of liberalism. Call these people “progressives.”

  30. The comments section of this article is just THE best. We use lots of cool terminology and poli-sci-isms to dismiss as pointless debate with those who disagree with us, all in response to an article how the “other side” doesn’t want to debate with us.

    1. What? Can you cite some examples of whatever point you are trying to make?

      I guess im not seeinf what you are talking about

    2. Yeah. We refute shitty ideas on their merit (or lack thereof) and that makes us the same as those who dismiss ideas and attack the person. Yeah. Exactly the same thing. Derp.

    3. There’s a difference between “Here is why what you said is totally stupid, and because of that I must conclude that you are an idiot” and “You must be an evil person for having that idea because the only reason someone would have that idea is because they’re evil.”

  31. This article sounds a little familiar.

    A Confusion of Terms

    Socialism, like the ancient ideas from which it springs, confuses the distinction between government and society. As a result of this, every time we object to a thing being done by government, the socialists conclude that we object to its being done at all.

    We disapprove of state education. Then the socialists say that we are opposed to any education. We object to a state religion. Then the socialists say that we want no religion at all. We object to a state-enforced equality. Then they say that we are against equality. And so on, and so on. It is as if the socialists were to accuse us of not wanting persons to eat because we do not want the state to raise grain.

    Written circa 1849.

    1. Progressives are cognitively unable to distinguish between how they feel about something and state force. Everything they feel must be law/policy. They cannot and will not understand one who feels a certain way about something but who is unwilling to translate those feelings to state force.

  32. Sounds about right. Discouraging.
    Garland, TX

  33. Harsanyi should spend a little of his attention on things “conservatives” say about the left.

    I think on both sides there is a lack of understanding of how the other understands the world. From our perspective, the only way they could take such positions or believe such things is to be totally deranged or depraved or both. And often, it is the most extreme, hence outrageous views that get the most attention, leading one to wonder if the entirety of the other side is not mad.

    If we get beyond this blockage to understand a bit of the world from the opposite perspective, yes, we can have a debate. But not a very satisfying one if you insist on denying the evidence of anthropogenic global warming – you can’t have a real debate with someone who rejects reality.

    1. Your point at deflection doesnt detract from the article.

      And to your agw….it isnt rejecting reality or whatever you are talking about. It is rejecting your views on it and proposed solution. Sorry bud

      Also i learned awhile back everyone does it top isnt a valid excuse

    2. “But not a very satisfying one if you insist on denying the evidence of anthropogenic global warming – you can’t have a real debate with someone who rejects reality.”

      Ugh J2Hess… You did it right here. Can you even see it? You laid down a couple self evident and solid premises to start with… “I think on both sides there is a lack of understanding of how the other understands the world.” and “If we get beyond this blockage to understand a bit of the world from the opposite perspective, yes, we can have a debate.”… only to essentially go on to end with, “I can’t have a debate with someone who disagrees with me on global warming”

  34. Morality? The right says the poor are too lazy to work hard. That’s a moral judgement. The has is obsessed with morals, even to the point of shutting down the govt over women’s sex habits

    1. The right is obsessed with morals, that is

    2. Incorrect. The poor say they are too lazy, not the right. And the pending federal budget fight is about women’s murder habits, not sex.

    3. Actually every one speaks from out of their personally held values and morals. It’s not possible for a human being to do otherwise.

      The only question is what actually are the passionately held values and morals one is arguing from. And unfortunately, in most discussions/arguments regarding public policy and social issues, they aren’t well communicated or accurately registered.

  35. “Socialism, like the old policy from which it emanates confounds Government and society. And so, every time we object to a thing being done by Government, it concludes that we object to its being done at all. We disapprove of education by the State?then we are against education altogether. We object to a State religion?then we would have no religion at all. We object to an equality which is brought about by the State then we are against equality, etc., etc. They might as well accuse us of wishing men not to eat, because we object to the cultivation of corn by the State.” – Fr?d?ric Bastiat, The Law, 1850

    “History merely repeats itself. It has all been done before. Nothing under the sun is truly new.” – Ecclesiastes 1:9

  36. Leftists or progressives-what name do you go under? How many in Russia, China, etc. died for your “progress”? Blame a religion-go ahead! You are just as bad; if not worse!

    1. Obviously not enough as communism failed. Moar dead next time and it just might work… know, like it is in N. Korea.

      1. And Venezuela is hard art work doing the same thing.

  37. “Poverty and exclusion are sexist,” Christine Lagarde told the U.N. General Assembly on Friday.

  38. Bigotry makes me sad.

  39. Can azindependent cite his 550b a year in fossil fuel subsidies? Seems kinda high

    1. It usually equates to how undertaxed FF’s are. And how things like standard equipment depreciation are ‘subsidies’. At least that’s the kind of shit progtards I know spew to me. It must be what they are currently told to think.

  40. For all our liberal friends here like tony, eric, etc whining about everybody does it too

    If you want i can go persue sites like thinkprogress, salon etc and maybe find something similar so it will make you feel better about yourself. Though i ask make sure to post that liberals do it too on the comments at least for consistency sake…..i know you guys would

    Lemme know


    Thanks, but I figured That One out long ago…

  42. Of course Liberals have no idea how decent people do anything. They can’t relate to decent people in any way.


  43. Where the Hell did all this shit come from?

  44. Why dems don’t allow more debates?…..-breaking/

  45. as Michelle explained I am startled that any body able to earn $8039 in four weeks on the internet . Check This Out …..

  46. You are spot on Mr. Hersanyi in the comprehensive list offered at the end of your article regarding what Liberals claim are your “true” and real motivations in supporting or making an argument for any position different than their own. I find I can count on it happening every single time I leave a social media post expressing a conservative or libertarian viewpoint. The most recent example happened when posting a Facebook comment regarding the Planned Parenthood videos and their content. Not only did the Liberal repliers to my comments absolutely refuse to watch the videos, but I was repeatedly told my true agenda as a white male over 50 was simply “to control women’s vaginas”. In the course of the exchange I often reflected on how instructive it was that they had no grasp of the lack of beginning credibility they held simply by endeavoring to critique something they had not yet watched. But I also knew it was entirely possible for them to be clueless about this lacking starting point (which should be understood by any adult as a given) because they are free to get away with it all the time in the contexts of social media, pop culture and “educational” institution discourse… not to mention across the public square in general.

  47. The author is 100% correct. It is an absolute waste of time to debate a liberal. Furthermore, liberals will simply ignore any law enacted by a conservative while conversely calling out the national guard if a conservative or christian politely uses civil disobedience.

    A complete double standard. Society’s morals are turned on their head. We need to change to a status of simply ignoring them and contemplating how to politically destroy them. We have a majority.

    If not we are very very close to descending into a perverse liberal fascism which basically is a hyper progressive version of 1984 and Nazi Germany. Arbeit macht Frei !! Global Warming Macht Frei!!! War on Women Macht Frei!!!

    1. We can’t just ignore the Progs when they go off on these rants that have little to nothing to do with the issue at hand because that is how we got into this mess in the first place. Previously Progs would go off the deep end (with no logic) on some topic and most people would roll their eyes and laugh behind their backs. However, that made the Progs think they were correct since no one disputed them.

      Also large numbers of Progs with the motto the end justifies the means went into journalism and thus we have huge issues with biased media who are outright ignoring stories that do not support their narrative and are slanting other stories to support their narrative no matter what is the truth.

      The good news is that Independents and Repubs are starting to confront the Progs and drive them back under their rocks. Example. PP minion confronts Carly F with – Why don’t you support women’s health which was meant to be a shut up argument. However, Carly nailed the minion but stating the obvious that Carly supports women’s health but not PP butchering of babies (especially selling parts for $). Instead of arguing about babies rights the minion counters with – well you are getting $ from pro-life which Carly states not a penny – and pushes back on target about butchering babies until the minion was flustered and shut up.


  48. Mr. Harsanyi hits it spot on.

    Libera ‘progressive’ democrats has stopped debating… because their claims and arguments are indefensible. Instead, it is the ‘morally’ or the ‘correct’ or the ‘justice’ thing to do. Al Gore is deprecated famously for his ‘the debate is over’… while a large majority of people simply laugh at him.

    Well written, Mr. Harsanyi!

  49. For liberals it is a multi step process with what appears to be a short circuit in the middle.

    The statement/position always starts with something universal that there is no argument against.

    For example – Saving the world for future generations.

    Most people can agree no matter what their political back ground that saving the world is a good thing.

    However then the liberals go on to a bat poo crazy proposition –
    To save the world you must admit that CO2 is causing global warming – climate change – Shut up and admit I am right. Also the end justifies the means with numerous examples of data manipulation and lies. Plus the sheer hypocrisy of the climate change followers holding a march in NYC where everyone flies/drives in, wears plastic products, and throws trash around.

    Then you also have Obama yelping about climate change and how the peons need to obey him all the while he has an enormous carbon foot print and flies to fund raisers, flies separately from Mo to vacations (even flying their dog once in by himself), and even flies in to yelp about global warming.

    Then if you mention it to a prog and want to discuss data/issues/hypocrisy or etc, they immediately go back up to the overarching concept and start screaming you are evil and don’t want to save the world. They seem to have no idea that there might be better ideas on how to really save the world/animals/plants and that their hypocritical lying bat poop crazy plan may be interfering in it all.

  50. Tolerance used to mean “Agree to disagree.” Now liberals have redefined tolerance to mean, “Agree with me, or else!”

  51. Outstanding article on the behaviorism of our left wing friends. They are the most tolerant indoctrinated drones ever, daddy paid big money for that right thinking.

  52. Every single word is true. The left has become profoundly anti-intellectual, by painting themselves into a moral and ideological corner: They don’t have to even think about why you believe anything. You only need to think about why someone else does, and accuse him of the most depraved beliefs. There, done. No introspection required.

  53. So when did liberals actually debate? Seems to me their debate style is to demand they are right and if you don’t like it your anything they can come up with. No need bothering with facts either in debate or accusations. Just look at “global warming” or more specifically…man-made global warming based solely on the use of fossil fuels. Take every opportunity to falsify data, threaten those who want further info and call them names. Don’t admit our last few centuries of weather are not a constant or that our pouring millions of acres of cement and cutting trees by the square mile might have some effect on temperatures. Has the world always been like the photo we just took?

  54. I will simply say “great article” – captures very well what is frustrating with what I hear all around me here in one of the “progressive” bastions of the world, NYC

  55. Bullshit article. Conservatives are just as guilty if not more so. Against the Iraq war? – anti-American, anti-veteran, anti troop? Pro Choice – you’re a murderous baby killer with no compassion? Want government subsidized health care for people under 65? – then you are for ‘death panels’. Against violating international treaties and our own constitution by opposing torture? – then you want Americans to die violently, are pro-Islamist, etc. Want background checks for guns – then you want your daughter raped at night in your own home while you watch helplessly. I have heard all of these arguments on conservative TV, radio, blogs, and internet sites.

    Both sides claim the moral high ground, and neither deserves it. Conservatives these days are for big government invading your bedroom, protecting media conglomerates, subsidizing large agricultural business, subsidizing oil, gas,and mining, and most of all protecting the defense industry. While liberals are for big government that spends on education and the environment. Pick your poison, but don’t claim one side doesn’t attack the other’s morals.

    1. Didnt you already post this above? What does that have to do with the point of the article on a libertarian site? Other people do it too isnt a valid excuse.

      Me thinks your liberal big gov comment ….well they are just for education and environment spending is you trying to seem non partisan while really giving them credit as you know people arent really against education and protecting the environment. While proceeding to rail on cons for all these negative things

      It betrays you being an independent…have some stones to admit you are a liberal. What media conglomerates are cons protecting and how exactly?

      Are you going back up your 550B a year for fossil fuels and 120B for renewable claim??

  56. Google pay 97$ per hour my last pay check was $8500 working 1o hours a week online. My younger brother friend has been averaging 12k for months now and he works about 22 hours a week. I cant believe how easy it was once I tried it out.
    This is wha- I do…… ??????

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