Tag Archives: libertarianism

Are free minds and free markets compatible with Christianity?

Source: Reason
by Stephanie Slade

“Is libertarian political philosophy intractably at odds with the Christian faith, as some folks seem to think? Over the last year, I’ve spoken with countless practicing Christians who also fall into what might be called the small-l libertarian camp. A few prefer ‘classical liberal’ while others identify as full-on anarcho-capitalists. Many work in the so-called liberty movement, but there were also business owners and writers, musicians and scientists, scholars and priests. Virtually all see markets, largely or entirely unfettered by the state, as the best mechanism we have for empowering humans to grow and thrive. I asked them to explain, in their own words, how they manage to reconcile two worldviews that many would have us believe are hopelessly in conflict. Below is a sampling of what I heard.” (10/14/17)


Anarchism and libertarianism: Two sides of the same coin

Source: Libertarianism.org
by David S D’Amato

“[A]narchists have traditionally worried about domination and understand that it often manifests itself outside of politics proper; social and economic instances of domination seem to abound, situations in which some external power dominates the will of the individual, yet the coercive power of the state is apparently absent (though perhaps merely hidden). Today, those who self-identify as anarchists are likely to see the modern libertarian movement — which, as an ideological phenomenon, is closely associated with the United States — as inattentive to the realities of these social and economic forms of domination. For them, the freedom free-market libertarians advocate is the freedom of the capitalist to exploit. Genuine economic freedom means, to the anarchist, socialism, not capitalism. The similarities that connect libertarians and anarchists are nevertheless apparent. Indeed, even to say that anarchism and libertarianism are similar is to partially obscure the true relationship between the two.” (09/28/17)


Libertarianism is more than just market fundamentalism

Source: Libertarian Institute
by Sheldon Richman

“Libertarian critics and supporters alike often characterize our approach to social problems as ‘let the market take care of it.’ If the government would just stop taxing and regulating us, so the narrative goes, all our troubles would be left behind. This oversimplification of libertarian policy proposals understandably turns off potential allies while lending opponents a powerful club with which to bash us. A better characterization of libertarian policy is that we believe individuals can generally achieve better results by cooperating voluntarily within a just system of property rights than by allowing an elected or unelected elite to apportion resources. Thinking about it this way highlights three points missing from the ‘let the market handle it’ construction.” (09/20/17)


Why left and right are not enough

Source: Attack The System
by Keith Preston

“Once again, anarchists are falling into the same trap that has plagued anarchists since the time of the First International, and that is this chronic inability to avoid aligning itself with the hard Left. While some Antifa types might fancy themselves as ‘anarchists’ or ‘libertarian communists’ their movement is already heavily infiltrated by Maoists and other ‘red fascists.’ As I have been saying for decades now, anarchists need to position themselves as a revolutionary center that is totally opposed to the liberal-capitalist status quo while at the same time zealously safeguarding against authoritarian extremes from both the Left and Right.” [editor’s note: Anarchists and libertarians ARE “the hard left.” Marx was the first major right-deviationist from libertarian class theory – TLK] (09/01/17)


An aesthetic of liberty

Source: Foundation for Economic Education
by Jeffrey A Tucker

“It should be obvious that, in theory and contrary to what the socialist left has long claimed, there is no connection whatsoever between what we call libertarianism and any species of rightist totalitarian ideology. One negates the other. As Leonard Read wrote in 1956, ‘Liberty has no horizontal relationship to authoritarianism. Libertarianism’s relationship to authoritarianism is vertical; it is up from the muck of men enslaving man …’ And yet today, there does indeed appear to be a social, institutional, and even intellectual connection, and migration, between what is called the liberty movement and the alt-right. Some of the most prominent alt-right voices in Charlottesville once identified as libertarians. This fact has been widely covered. It’s a fair question to ask: did these individuals ever really believe in a liberal worldview? Were they trolling all along? Were they just deeply confused?” (08/31/17)


Transhumanism and libertarianism are entirely compatible

Source: Reason
by Ronald Bailey

“A fight over whether or not transhumanism can be libertarian broke out over at The American Conservative. The contretemps began with an article by Zoltan Istvan, author of The Transhumanist Wager. … Istvan optimistically asserts that ‘freedom from the government will allow radical science to go on undisturbed.’ … Kai Weiss, a researcher at the Austrian Economics Center and Hayek Institute in Vienna, Austria, swiftly denounced the piece. ‘Transhumanism should be rejected by libertarians as an abomination of human evolution,’ he wrote. Clearly there is some disagreement. Weiss is correct that Istvan doesn’t expend much intellectual effort linking transhumanism with libertarian thinking. Istvan largely assumes that people seeking to flourish should have the freedom to enhance their bodies and minds and those of their children without much government interference. … ‘At no point [does Istvan] wonder if we should even strive for these technologies,’ Weiss thunders. While Istvan may not wonder, Weiss fails to make a single argument against these technological developments: It is apparently self-evident to him that they are evil.” (08/31/17)


What the alt-right gets wrong

Source: Reason

“Some news outlets have claimed that there’s a troubling ‘pipeline’ from libertarianism to the most revolting corners of the alt-right movement. Their evidence is that white supremacist Christopher Cantwell, the star of a Vice documentary about the racist, tiki torch-wielding Charlottesville mob, was once a figure in the libertarian Free State project, and alt-right icon and white nationalist Richard Spencer himself was once a Ron Paul supporter and self-identified as a libertarian. Anyone who claims to care about individual liberty should reject the overt racism in Charlottesville, the broadly defined alt-right and the watered down ‘alt-lite’ variants represented by provocateurs like Milo Yiannopoulous and YouTube personalities Stefan Molyneux and Laura Southern, as well as the right-wing nationalism pushed by recently fired White House strategist Steve Bannon. These expressions of right wing populism are the anti-thesis of libertarianism and they collapse under their own logic.” [Flash video] (08/31/17)


An Objectivist case for libertarianism

Source: Libertarianism.org
by Neera K Badhwar

“Despite her disavowal of the label ‘libertarian,’ Ayn Rand’s ethics provide a justification for libertarian political institutions.” (08/30/17)


Radical liberalism: The soul of libertarianism

Source: Center for a Stateless Society
by Jason Lee Byas

“Liberalism is committed to both a staggering confidence and a sobering fear. Its confidence is in the free association of individuals through markets, civil society, and the spaces in between — ways in which each act in accordance with their own dreams and aspirations and each benefit from the existence of each. Its fear is in the disruption of those dreams and aspirations by some against others, in service of apparent interests, to the detriment of all. Liberalism is the fearless embrace of the positive-sum, and the terrified rejection of the zero-sum. It is the view of life where both predatory forms of egoism and a cooperation requiring systemic self-sacrifice are incoherent. At its most radical, liberalism insists that an injury to one is an injury to all, and proposes an oath of ‘I swear to never live for the sake of another, nor to ask another to live for mine.’ It holds that those two principles are not only compatible, but complementary.” (08/30/17)


Why libertarians should embrace their infighting

Source: HubPages
by Garry Reed

“[E]ven though throughout much of the world ‘libertarian’ typically means ‘socialist’ or some other form of collectivism, in the United States it came to mean a continuation of classical liberalism, laissez-faire capitalism and ‘socially liberal and economically conservative.’ The Libertarian political party was founded in the United States in 1971. The Libertarian name was chosen because (quoting Wikipedia again) ‘The Libertarian Party viewed the dominant Republican and Democratic parties as having diverged from what they viewed as the libertarian principles of the American Founding Fathers.’ The LibertarianReality article rightly complains that self-identified libertarians appear all over the political/philosophical map in the US today, disagreeing with nearly every meaning, definition, description, principle, concept and usage from anarchist to minarchist to voluntaryist to mutualist to agorist to anarcho-capitalist to free marketeer to post-statist.” (08/23/17)