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The Mentality of the 'New Libertarian'

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Aristophanes Posted: Wed, Feb 6 2013 10:58 AM

So, I'm going to tell you about an observation in my personal life experience with libertarian politics.

We could call them new libertarians, born again libertarians, conservative libertarians, but I think the most apt is simply politician.  But, ummm, the pejorative sense of the word "politician."  (The left has noticed something that many here are unwilling to admit and that is, namely, that libertarians, or people who call themselves that, are tricked into supporting NeoConservative goals (I just found that site when looking for a picture, it is coincidence that the caption for the picture, that I found on Google, says what it says, honestly).

The kids at the YAL at my University promoted Ron Paul to no end, but they also promoted Ayn Rand and Milton Friedman.  Now, I don't want to make people think that those two are excluded from the intellectual side of libertarianism, however, I would like to mention that this YAL treated them as if they are the frontrunning writers and inspirations for the movement.

This kid who ran the meetings and represented our University's chapter at the regional and national meetings (as I am sure they all do).  He made a few comments towards me that pushed me to dislike this kid.  First, he was the primary one touting Friedman as 'our' economist.  Second, is personal (he made a joke about me (where I got my LvMI sweatshirt) when I questioned his motives for not going deeper into libertarianism in front of the group - this sort of made me think that he felt threatened and his instinct is to denigrate then laugh off the threat (AKA his alpha instinct).  Third, he mentioned, again after I'd pointed out that what the group was thinking at was shallow, that YAL was not a book club and that perception matters.

Yes, perception does matter.  How people perceive the so called "libertarians" who work deeply within the political system is an important factor.  It is not a secret to us here that politics draws the lust for power.  Power draws on and exacerbates ambition and ambition is closely linked with avarice.  Thus, we end up with power hunger people in the most powerful positions.  There were even meetings that revolved around resume building which entails getting your name on everything that you can so you can use it for help getting a job on a political campaign...and running for office themselves.

Thinking for a second on the attitude and psychology of the kid running things for the libertarians here has me thinking that he does not realize that power is what is drawing him to libertarianism, but I suspect, this is his personality type.  He is just one of those drawn unconsciously to power.  This is evidenced in his reaction to my questions.  He ridiculed me and the idea that people should look deeper than Ayn Rand and Milton Friedman for 'the movement."  When his leadership and direction was questioned he didn't explain himself he distracted the others.  Because perception matters. "If I can make a fool of this asshole questioning my motivations (which i may have never fully considered), then the group will still believe what I tell them and see things the way I do.  Thus, I retain my rank and position within the 'libertarians'."  He played the political card that dealt the highest damage control rating in the given circumstances of the YAL meeting.  (I think Plato's distaste for democracy was likely because Athens' democracy sentenced Socrates to death for questioning things taken for granted.  My disdain for democracy is similarly founded.) 

Unfortunately, this only adds to my pessimism in regards to political success.  The kid, again, I don't think knows that this is his behavior pattern, but it should enlighten us as to the mentality of the people who are running in the stead of the illustrious Ron Paul.  Ron Paul stands out because he never actually did give up his convictions.  He played politics with certain issues, but never allowed the fundamentals to be taken for granted.  I do not have the same faith those that were inspired by him.  Sorry.

I'll end with a quote from Bertrand Russell in his Conquest of Happiness

It is affection received, not affection given, that causes his sense of security...but also admiration...has this effect.  Persons whose trade is to secure public admiration, such as actors, preachers, speakers, and politicians, come to depend more and more on applause.  When they receive their due meed of public approbation their life is full of zest, when they do not, they become discontented and self centered.  (CoH, ch. XII)

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Why don't you like Ayn Rand and Milton Friedman?

 

Edit: Just seem weird you never actually said those two were nationalists but you posted an article comparing libertariamism to facism lol. I don't think Ayn Rand supported corperate tyranny, just seems like a stretch to post that silly article

"Inflation has been used to pay for all wars and empires as far back as ancient Rome… Inflationism and corporatism… prompt scapegoating: blaming foreigners, illegal immigrants, ethnic minorities, and too often freedom itself" End the Fed P.134Ron Paul
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Why don't you like Ayn Rand and Milton Friedman?

That is definitely not the point of this post or thread, nor do I want to discuss it, so you are getting minimal answers.

AR: Support of Israel, hatred of libertarianism, dismissal of Kant (she isn't qualified to criticize philosophy, plus Mises has Kant and Schopenhauer to thank for his epistemological basis, which Rand denies and labels 'mysticism' and 'anti-reason' and 'anti-life' - seriously, Kant, anti-life?; she had no idea what she was talking about)

MF:  The withholding tax; his economic theory is fundamentally in agreement with Keynesianism (central bank existence is a given and growth of the money supply is a given); he is a staple of the traditional american rightwing conservatism (and therefore polemic and acts as a "wedge personality" within politics - like Bush or Kennedy or Keynes).

Libertarianism should do all it can to avoid association with polemic figures in history and contemporary politics.  It needs its own rhetorical flair so that phraseology of libertarianism can be assuaged from right wing-ism.  This involves cultivating the right sense/reference categories with specific words that will be more convincing than moral and economic arguments.  We have to play the game of propaganda (psychlogical stuff) rather than facts and logic which don't work as persuasion tactics in democratic politics (or at least, they play less of a role). 

EDIT: RE: Edit: I'll take the link out, I thought it was too ironic that the caption to goebels said what it said, so I posted it (it said what I was saying but for totally different reasons and a very obviously leftist vernacular).  I specifically dismissed the article as influence on my own.  The link is gone.

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I agree Friedman and Rand made many mistakes like Friedman believed the great depression happened becaue the Federal Resrerve didn't do enough. He also supported a welfare program worse than food stamps.

It is ironic though, if anything Ron Paul is more of a nationalist than Ayn Rand or Milton Friedman becausae he always brings up the founding fathers and the constitution. Plus any article that compares libertarianism to facism can't be taken seriously. edit: He took out the link to the article

"Inflation has been used to pay for all wars and empires as far back as ancient Rome… Inflationism and corporatism… prompt scapegoating: blaming foreigners, illegal immigrants, ethnic minorities, and too often freedom itself" End the Fed P.134Ron Paul
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Like I said, my article was written without having read the other.  I only typed in "politician propaganda" into google, clicked images and saw goebbels and posted it, when I read the caption i thought it was ironic that for entirely different reasons that article made a similar claim to my own.

You seem to have ignored altogether my post and what it was about in order to discuss that idiotic dicision to post a link to the caption...i took the link out so as to not distract the infants into discussing something other than the topic of which I posted.

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'Nuff said, especially when one of the top comments is "72 butthurt Austrianfags."

And as for Ayn Rand...

On Libertarians:

"They're not defenders of capitalism. They're a group of publicity seekers.... Most of them are my enemies... I've read nothing by Libertarians (when I read them, in the early years) that wasn't my ideas badly mishandled—i.e., the teeth pulled out of them—with no credit given."

"a monstrous, disgusting bunch of people"

"plagiarize my ideas when that fits their purpose."

...And to top it all off, the Ayn Rand Institute supports military intervention in Iran.

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Anenome replied on Wed, Feb 6 2013 3:09 PM

College libertarians is the bush-leagues. I don't think it makes much sense to create sweeping generalizations on the basis of a group encounter.

Libertarians whom are still pushing for politicial reform and political action here simply haven't yet been disillusioned deeply enough, haven't questioned their most basic assumptions, and are perhaps ignorant of political history and the history of reform.

I think the effort towards seasteading is far more realistic than attempt at political change, for a variety of reasons, but especially for the chance of anything new happening in the short-term.

We'll definitely sea a seastead in operation long before we see a libertarian win the nomination for president :P

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Seasteading is a joke.  For a whole lot of reasons.

And I certainly don't think that after Rand Paul, Bob Barr, and Gary Johnson that my observation of this group (ignorant followers who think they are informed and an avaricious leader who knows that they aren't) is much different than the average NGO or awareness group.

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Neodoxy replied on Wed, Feb 6 2013 3:16 PM

Anyone who really endorses Milton Friedman beyond his microecnomic insights (which were really just rehitorations of sensible micro) while opposing Keynesianism is a hypocrite. In modern macro the only major difference between Monetarism and Keynesianism is what each side believes the slopes of these curves to be:

Monetarism is simply money Keynesianism

@Aristophanes

Do you believe your experience to be indicative of a general trend within Libertarians today? Would you agree with the statement that as the far right seeks out for new ideas to replace their own defunct ideologies and to justify their rhetoric against liberals that they are increasingly taking ideas from Libertarianism?

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Monetarism is simply money Keynesianism

Exactly, which is why he should be stricken from the top of the libertarian economists.

Do you believe your experience to be indicative of a general trend within Libertarians today?

Yes.  I kind of explained in the post above, there are enough prominent examples that my experience follws that leads me to believe that i have observed only a microcosm of what happens at very large levels.

Would you agree with the statement that as the far right seeks out for new ideas to replace their own defunct ideologies and to justify their rhetoric against liberals that they are increasingly taking ideas from Libertarianism?

Sort of.

i think they are taking the legitimacy of the name of libertarianism (and only when they look back and try to appeal to a Founder, for instance) certainly not with drug laws, immigration, etc.  But those are iussues that I don't pay much attention to.  Banking and the M/I Complex are more important and the republicans are trying to implant those (statist) concepts into the new libertarianism (which will be polarized upon its inception, so all their work will be for naught as the left will see right through them.  And we can all see that here.).  So, all they will do is diluate and discredit libertarianism.

 

BTWs, these kids have, since I've stopped attending, gone around campus several times to write "Who is John Galt? WH 005 Thursdays @ 6" in chalk on the various sidewalks.  At least, I think it is them, it might be some Randian cult that I am unaware of.  This is how they are bringing people into libertrianism...by usuing AYN RAND as "bait."  Also, YAL and the other student NGO groups do get instructions and money from the national organization.  They are given freedom to be creative, but they are taking orders; the bobo corporate model.

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I'm staring a YAL chapter at my school in the next few weeks, so I'll keep your points in mind.

I think one of the fundamental problems that such a group faces is the need to both entertain senior members and bring new ones in without scaring them off. So while we might need to have some readings on anarchy for the more experienced people, the new ones need to have supply and demand explained to them (essentially). Furthermore, when someone wants to go more in-depth in front of the whole group, it runs the risk of making the entire group seem like extremists. It also confuses many people who are simply not used to the concepts. This is just my experience with it.

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Yeah, it's probably best to agree with Rothbard, Harry Brown, and the LRC crowd on this: that the libertarian party / actual libertarians in office is just a fun little tool to get the message across - any serious attempt to be a politician is contrary to anything a libertarian could be.

As to the way some dude tried to hijack a group, that's just the way any of these things seem to function regaardless of ideology - one should probably concentrate more of a list of tips and strategies to nip these things in the bud when they happen

That said; why would libs take a freaking pulp fiction detective novelst who wanted nothing to dowith libertarianism as a cornerstone?  Ayn Rand is only fun for a type of épater le bourgeois to use on left wing academicians and bohemians - after that her uses become very limited.

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First of all, I just want to say I had a much harder time reading that than I should have.  Perhaps you should lay off the weed a bit, or maybe you were just particularly peeved when you wrote it, but I have no idea what you are talking about in half of it.  I can tell from the rest of the thread that you apparently removed the caption you speak of in the OP, but evidently you didn't adjust the language accordingly.  I still have no idea what "that site" is that you speak of.

That being said, I tend to agree this is more or less what one will tend to see at such meetings.  It's just how things go.  As someone else said, it's more a personality type than anything else.  The people who run these kind of school group meetings are quite similar, regardless of the subject of the group.

Ultimately while it may not be the most efficient or effective use of resources, it could certainly be a lot worse.  There are definitely much more harmful things for kids to be reading than Ayn Rand.

I think if these kids stick with it long enough, they'll continue to move in the right direction.  Those that don't will burn out and disappear anyway.  Anyone who doesn't, but instead starts to realize the various flaws in the economics and philosophies of their current idols, will continue searching for truth...and they'll more than likely find it in the Austro-libertarian tradition, and the LvMI will be here to facilitate that.  I'm pretty optimistic.

 

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gravyten577:
It is ironic though, if anything Ron Paul is more of a nationalist than Ayn Rand or Milton Friedman becausae he always brings up the founding fathers and the constitution.

Evidently you have no idea what you're talking about.

 

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First of all, I just want to say I had a much harder time reading that than I should have.  Perhaps you should lay off the weed a bit, or maybe you were just particularly peeved when you wrote it, but I have no idea what you are talking about in half of it.  I can tell from the rest of the thread that you apparently removed the caption you speak of in the OP, but evidently you didn't adjust the language accordingly.  I still have no idea what "that site" is that you speak of.

I wasn't mad at all when I wrote it.  It happened like three months ago.  But, it did come as a revelation as I was smoking for the first time of the day (the most powerful one), so good call on that one.  The caption of the photo said "This is the face of libertarianism today" referring to Goebbels.  The site was saying that neocons are fascists that are using libertarians to forward their agenda.  It was a similar statement to mine, but it was backed by all sorts of leftist economic rhetoric (mine was the psychology of power).  I knew when I posted it that it would get flak for being a "source" for my rant even though it was not.  That is what i tried to convey in parenthesis in the OP.

Ultimately while it may not be the most efficient or effective use of resources, it could certainly be a lot worse.  There are definitely much more harmful things for kids to be reading than Ayn Rand.

I suppose.  Maybe Charles Manson?  Did he write anything?  Or jim Jones?  oh oh L Ron hubbard wrote all kinds of books.  Anyway, Rand promotes a very childish view of philosophy (again, her view of Kant says it all) that will hinder people's coming to Mises if they buy her rants on mysticism.  And no one is sticking up for Milton.  Probably because we are here...  He is the dangerous one to indoctrinate people with fervor for.

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Aristophanes:
I suppose.  Maybe Charles Manson?  Did he write anything?

He was actually quite prolific from what I hear.  This is just a short list of what has actually been published.  God knows how much poetry and song lyrics he probably cranked out.

 

Or jim Jones?  oh oh L Ron hubbard wrote all kinds of books.

Don't forget Isaac Asimov.

 

And no one is sticking up for Milton.  Probably because we are here...  He is the dangerous one to indoctrinate people with fervor for.

I'll stick up for him.  I find him extremely useful.  He explicates and explains things with an unparalleled articulation and has a talent for relaying things to the layman probably better than anyone I've seen.

I will agree he can be dangerous, as he's so good, that it can be quite easy for a newb (not coincidentally the kind of person who would get the most out of him) to fall into a trap of thinking he must be right on pretty much everything.  This of course can lead to holding some bad ideas...mostly relating to minarchism and money.  But again, as long as the person continues with their studies, they'll continue to understand, and they'll come across the critiques, and they'll see the alternative views.  Even I felt something just didn't sit right about his explanation of the Great Depression even before I had heard any critiques of Friedman and the monetarist view.  If someone is actually interested enough to be reading free-market economics in the first place, they'll find some Austrian School.  If nothing else, the sheer presence and prominence of the Mises Institute will pretty much guarantee that exposure.

But there is plenty a newbie can learn from Friedman.  He can do a great deal in terms of enhancing a person's economic outlook, and their view of the world.  Again, his speaking ability and gift for capturing the attention of the listener, despite the topic being the "dismal science", is uncanny.  And even Rothbard said he was right at least 90% of the time.

 

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Meistro replied on Wed, Feb 6 2013 9:02 PM

It's you job to lead these followers to Rothbard, the Austrian school etc.  Give them literature, challenge this guy, point out the contradictions in what he says.  There are a lot of beltway type "libertarians" and in my opionion they do a lot to subvert the movement (think Reagan).  Friedman though, whatever his flaws, and they are legion, is a good guy.  Rand was a bit of a nutjob but she did a lot of good too.  I mean, it doesn't really matter what gets people into the movement, once they are there and believing all these things its a lot easier to convert them to philosophic anarchism.  Forge some personal relationships with these followers and naturally through conversation work on converting them to anarchism.  Don't focus too much on your conflict with the leader, but don't subordinate yourself to him.

 

... just as the State has no money of its own, so it has no power of its own - Albert Jay Nock

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Neodoxy replied on Wed, Feb 6 2013 9:06 PM

"It's you job to lead these followers to Rothbard, the Austrian school etc.  Give them literature, challenge this guy, point out the contradictions in what he says... Forge some personal relationships with these followers and naturally through conversation work on converting them to anarchism."

That's exactly what you're going to do, right Aristophanes?

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Actually, he's going to alert them to the Zionist menace.

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So the "new libertarians" don't meet somebody's purity test....meh. They're going to get more accomplished than any number of apoliticals, however pure.

P.S. In my opinion, the crisis in the libertarian movement is not the superficiality of some people's understanding of the philosophy, but rather some people's political naivete. I also think that expecting more than a small fraction of the population to ever truly understand libertarianism is unreasonable.

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I feel the same way.

When i see videos on youtube about people becoming libertarians and talking about how the federal reserve is bad for the economy....

In the back of my mind i keep repeating to my self:

plz abct plz abct plz abct

We just need people to be more mature in their libertarianness.

The seed already has been dropped, it now must get watered and nutritioned.

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Neodoxy replied on Thu, Feb 7 2013 12:02 AM

If I had a dollar for every bad critique of the FED and bad explanation of ABCT I've seen on youtube...

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"It's you job to lead these followers to Rothbard, the Austrian school etc.  Give them literature, challenge this guy, point out the contradictions in what he says... Forge some personal relationships with these followers and naturally through conversation work on converting them to anarchism."

That's exactly what you're going to do, right Aristophanes?

I laughed it off.  It was months ago...just before the election.  They were going to stand on the corner of intersections with "Obamney" signs (the kind of political activity i think of as a waste of time) on election night and i was going to chill and later relax because I didn't want Romney to win, haha.  'If I had a dollar for every war ended by sign carryers...or every opinion turned'  We should be taking our cues from the intelligence agencies; use their subversion tactics as our political action model (minus the questionable stuff).  If anything a pro liberty private intelligence network could be a new front and a really useful thing.  It would only need to craft counter propaganda to their propaganda.  Seriously, people, read about these sources; just look at the tables of contents and page 6 of counterdeception.

Actually, he's going to alert them to the Zionist menace.

Yeah right.  I'm not going to utter the Z-word in public...that fight is not mine, but the lobby is a thing.

They're going to get more accomplished than any number of apoliticals, however pure.

True that.  but, for what end?  For what end I ask you?  As my Russell quote indicates, these people grow more and more selfish the more they get involved in politics. 

In my opinion, the crisis in the libertarian movement is not the superficiality of some people's understanding of the philosophy, but rather some people's political naivete.

Who's naivety?

I also think that expecting more than a small fraction of the population to ever truly understand libertarianism is unreasonable.

Why?  People used to read philosophers when they published essays (I'm thinking Rousseau, Burke, and Hume); people who were politically engaged (BEFORE DEMOCRACY) were actually pretty smart.  Now people read tweets (or Harry Potter etc).  We just need to shift our format from honest white propaganda (der her, libertarianism is good because...) to gray forms (???...profit).  As some of you will protest to that...go hold signs in the streets =/

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Student replied on Thu, Feb 7 2013 5:18 AM

The goal of your group: to promote a specific political agenda. 

Your goal: to promote a specific political philosophy.

If you are looking to promote a particular philosophy, college libertarian meetings are simply not the place for it. They are typically looking to push specific policy proposals through protesting, speaking at community events, campaigning for politicians, etc. They are not looking to convert people to a specific philosophy because it beside the point. People from diverse philosophical backgrounds can support the same policy proposals. IOW they are practicing the art of influencing people on the civic level. That's the definition of *politics*
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Politics

Why would you go to a political meeting and expect something besides politics to be discussed?

 

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Jargon replied on Thu, Feb 7 2013 6:22 AM

Smiling Dave:

Actually, he's going to alert them to the Zionist menace.

And?

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@ Student

but, that isn't what they were doing.  They were promoting Ayn Rand.  What policy implications does she promote that are not firmly grounded in philosophical doctrine?

How far are you willing to seperate political philosophy from political agenda.  Are you familiar with the historical events known as the American (Locke, Montesquieu) and French (Rousseau, Robbespierre) revolutions?  or the Russian revolution (Marx, Lenin)?  I'm pretty sure there is a rather common blend of philosophy and action that results in politics.  My concern is over the type of action that furthers the agenda that is developed through philosophy.

Why would you go to a political meeting and expect something besides politics to be discussed?

Your tone irritates me.  I think your criticism (or analysis or whatever) is interprative and unworthy of real concern with issue being discussed.

also

hey are typically looking to push specific policy proposals through protesting, speaking at community events, campaigning for politicians, etc.  They are not looking to convert people to a specific philosophy because it beside the point.

haha, not looking to convert people, but pushing policy proposals in a democratic political arena.  Do you see your error in judging their goal oriented actions?

Plus, essentially you are saying that policy proposals are short term multipartisan events and that these political alliances do not last as they are not concerned with the overall philosophy that led to the perspective that leads to the alliance.  Thus my point of selling out principles...you should really think about this more.

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Student replied on Thu, Feb 7 2013 7:21 AM

but, that isn't what they were doing.  They were promoting Ayn Rand.  What policy implications does she promote that are not firmly grounded in philosophical doctrine?

hmm.So if I said a political agenda could be advanced without requiring a uniform political philosophy, i must have meant that no one person promoting that agenda can hold a political philosophy.

Okay.

Are you familiar with the historical events known as the American (Locke, Montesquieu) and French (Rousseau, Robbespierre) revolutions?  or the Russian revolution (Marx, Lenin)? I'm pretty sure there is a rather common blend of philosophy and action that results in politics.

hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm. So if I said a political agenda could be advanced without requiring a uniform political philosophy, i must have also meant that the spread of a particular philosophy could have no impact on advancing that agenda. And who could argue with the notion that the American, French, and Russian revolutions were driven by ideas (and not the economic interests of individual participants)?

Okay.

Your tone irritates me.  I think your criticism (or analysis or whatever) is interprative and unworthy of real concern with issue being discussed.

hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.  

Okay. 

I just can't seem to tell if you are trolling. 

 

 

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@student

So if I said a political agenda could be advanced without requiring a uniform political philosophy, i must have meant that no one person promoting that agenda can hold a political philosophy.

I'm pretty sure that i said in my OP that I am not wishing to exclude the various alignments of political...we'll call them ideologies that push agendas forward.

The point of the post was to point out the effects of power on people's behavior.  I think your response is indicative of an offense that you have taken to the semantics.

So.

to

reiterate

I think your criticism (or analysis or whatever) is interprative and unworthy of real concern with [the] issue being discussed. Therefore, you are the one trolling.

And who could argue with the notion that the American, French, and Russian revolutions were driven by ideas (and not the economic interests of individual participants)?

haha

It's hard to say that the economic interests of the downtrodden Russians were what led them to the crushing model of political economy that developed there.  "Our economics interests alone led us to the model of communism."  What a larf.  (Communism, a socio-economic model, was born of dialectic scientific materialism which is a philosophy of history that leads to philosophy of economics, kid.)  It's also hard to ignore the documents and writings of the Framers in the U.S. as having no influence on the direction taken.

So, fuck off with that tone, the issue you have taken with this thread, and read my posts more carefully so I don't have to repeat myself.

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Student replied on Thu, Feb 7 2013 10:25 AM

The point of the post was to point out the effects of power on people's behavior.

and my point was that you were reading too much into the exchange. The guy telling you that YAL isn't a book club might not have been doing it to silence dissent, but making a legit point. The point of these political groups isn't to have "deep conversations about political philosophy". So you were expecting something you shouldn't have. But, hey, I wasn't there. Maybe the guy honestly deserves to be **compared to Goebbels** because he dissed your sweat shirt. 

It's hard to say that the economic interests of the downtrodden Russians were what led them to the crushing model of political economy that developed there.  "Our economics interests alone led us to the model of communism." 

 Yikes. Too much to really unpack here. I'll just say it sounds like you're assuming that Russian revolution was started with the single goal of installing a communist regime. Simply not true. It was a long road from the Feburary Revolution of 1917 to the creation of the USSR in 1922. It wasn't at all clear what would replace the Tsar and in the end it took years of civil war to decide. History is much more messy than "Marx had an idea, Lennin took it and ran, and everyone else followed". 

So, fuck off with that tone

Okay.

 

 

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Aristophanes:
True that.  but, for what end?  For what end I ask you?

Reducing the power of the state.

As my Russell quote indicates, these people grow more and more selfish the more they get involved in politics.

Firstly, it sounds like you're making an inference about the motives of these people you met on the basis of pretty scanty evidence, little more than your own intuitive reading of the situation. Secondly, and more importantly, you're turning this questionable inference into a generalization about all politically engaged libertarians.

Who's naivety?

That of (1) the libertarians who shun political action altogether, and believe that the power of the state can be reduced by some other means, and also (2) the libertarians who, while favoring political participation in principle, can't stomach and/or don't understand the realities of practical politics, such that no libertarian candidate with any chance of success is ever pure enough to win their support.

Why?  People used to read philosophers when they published essays (I'm thinking Rousseau, Burke, and Hume); people who were politically engaged (BEFORE DEMOCRACY) were actually pretty smart.

Which people? A relatively well-educated minority? Yes. The masses? No. The mass understanding of political philosophy has always been superficial, and so it will remain I predict.

apiarius delendus est, ursus esuriens continendus est
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and my point was that you were reading too much into the exchange. The guy telling you that YAL isn't a book club might not have been doing it to silence dissent, but making a legit point. The point of these political groups isn't to have "deep conversations about political philosophy". So you were expecting something you shouldn't have. But, hey, I wasn't there. Maybe the guy honestly deserves to be **compared to Goebbels** because he dissed your sweat shirt.

how the fuck do you know?  We spent like 3 days going over Friedman and Rand.  All three days I tried to give them the benefit of the doubt.  They were discussing philosophy you know nothing.

I compared him to Goebbels for silencing "dissent" when it was related to projecting perception, dumbass.  You know, Goebbels speciality?

The sweatshirt was a comment in front of people (about where I had obtained a LvMI sweatshirt...) and was meant to denigrate me in front of them.  This is ABOUT PERCEPTION.  I feel like you are just a door and I don't know how you became animate.

Excellent strawman on the Rusasia thing, but it is too far off the topic of the thread to address.

So, fuck off with that tone

Okay.

Thanks!

 

"The Fed does not make predictions. It makes forecasts..." - Mustang19
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There is a balance to be struck here.

 

On one hand, let's be completely honest here, we aren't going to get anywhere if we sit on our asses and refuse to do anything politically, or hang out in echo chambers telling each other how righteous our beliefs are. Even if we convince a sizable amount of people that libertarian principles are correct, that's useless if we have nothing to do with the political process. In the event the government collapses then MAYBE this will work, but I'd much rather try to avoid a Russian Revolution scenario, where one of the nastiest groups of the bunch played its enemies against each other and came out on top.

On the other, compromise and pragmatism are useless if they lose sight of the goal. I'm fine with siding with conservatives, liberals, Maoists, Marxists, what have you so long as they have common goals with us that they put above those that oppose us. When the liberals put anti-interventionism and pro-civil liberties first, then I support them in that, just as I support conservatives when they support limiting the size and scope of government. However, I'm not going to "sit down and shut up" when they turn around and fuck us over, even if they're "mostly right".

This tendency towards promoting "respectability" to gain political influence over actually getting ideas spread and opposing the real problems is annoyingly becoming more common now that Rand Paul has taken over from Ron. So many "Ron Paul supporters" basically demand that we forget that we're libertarians and ask that we bend over backwards for the war-hungry fascists, ignorant religious social crusaders, and inconsistent establishment cowards because "Hey! Maybe they'll audit the Fed at some point in the next ten  years or push through a few million dollars in cuts!" So we slowly lose what distinguishes us from the same old morons, and our "end goal" becomes trivial and effectively irrelevant. Yes, it's okay to have short term, realistic goals like "auditing the Fed", "cutting taxes" and "legalized marijuana", but we're not going to seriously change anything anywhere if we don't keep the long term goal, severely limiting if not removing the state outright, in mind.

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Malachi replied on Thu, Feb 7 2013 4:46 PM

its too bad that the partyarch/beltarian leading the group felt threatened by you. and I agree with whoever else who said "thats basically par for the course." thats why Konkin eschewed party politics, the quest for political power turns people into politicians. even ron paul voted to invade afghanistan. <p>

if it was my school I would probably try to start an entirely different libertarian group while maintaining ties with yal. "yal isnt a book club (even though you guys promote a novelist as though she was a philosopher and make reference to the content of her doorstop as if it were a book) so I started a "media analysis club" where we discuss books, articles, lectures, and videos that are germane to liberty and politics." I always liked howard roarke better than galt ANYWAY <p>

its funny that people will denigrate non-political activism, when they should already know that the political method is flawed. perhaps they just havent considered the problem in detail. I wouldnt mind seeing a credible libertarian presidential campaign, but I think its kind of impossible, youd have to violate libertarian principles to get elected.

Aristophanes is also correct that all of you (us) need to educate yourselves on the espionage/intelligence/information warfare field of study. I will add to his above recommendation with my own: http://www.amazon.com/Thwarting-Enemies-Abroad-Counterintelligence-ebook/dp/B002HMBWQU/ref=cm_cr_pr_product_top/176-0137025-8176069

Keep the faith, Strannix. -Casey Ryback, Under Siege (Steven Seagal)
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Malachi replied on Thu, Feb 7 2013 4:50 PM

On one hand, let's be completely honest here, we aren't going to get anywhere if we sit on our asses and refuse to do anything politically, or hang out in echo chambers telling each other how righteous our beliefs are. Even if we convince a sizable amount of people that libertarian principles are correct, that's useless if we have nothing to do with the political process. In the event the government collapses then MAYBE this will work, but I'd much rather try to avoid a Russian Revolution scenario, where one of the nastiest groups of the bunch played its enemies against each other and came out on top.

see agorism. also, see the current federal government, collapse is inevitable. we need to prepare for that event, getting elected to office is the useless process. ron paul got less airtime than any other presidential candidate.

Keep the faith, Strannix. -Casey Ryback, Under Siege (Steven Seagal)
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Ron Paul still received more airtime than any other libertarian before or since, though. In turn, he brought far more people to the libertarian way of thinking than anyone else, really. Before his presidential run in '08, calling yourself a "libertarian" would get lots of blank stares. Now, we're sufficiently important for conservatives and nuts to try to co-opt our message and for liberals to attack us, which is quite an improvement.

Agorism is all well and good, but it's effectiveness is... limited unless you have a lot of people already involved. The State really doesn't care if you have some clever arrangement with Farmer Bob for radishes, and unless you have a very widespread net of Agorists in a given area from many walks of life you aren't achieving much through it. So that limits it's use to New Hampshire and MAYBE certain parts of the US during a disaster situation. It's also basically useless for bringing anyone else over, since everyone involved in only really interacting with everyone else who's already involved.

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Anenome replied on Thu, Feb 7 2013 5:36 PM
 
 

"see agorism. also, see the current federal government, collapse is inevitable. we need to prepare for that event, getting elected to office is the useless process. ron paul got less airtime than any other presidential candidate."

^^^ Correct. I maintain that our only realistic option is to build our own free region, probably a seastead, and develop it while the collapses continue around us and pick up the pieces of civilization from there.

Seasteading because only it has the potential for a mass society of billions of members, and because ocean-travel is the cheapest way to facilitate trade.

Because there's no existing jurisdictions on the sea to 'overthrow,' and because there's lots of room to grow. And because there's at least two major industries coming that will rely on the sea: fish-farming in the open ocean to replace wild-caught fishing--with fish stocks down nearly 90% and fish consumption only increasing, there's about to be an inflection point in seafood consumption. We will have to start fish farming everything, and the easiest way to do that is on the open ocean in floating cages.S

Secondly, biodiesel can be grown via algae or seaweed using the massive space and free water available on the sea to replace oil. Estimates are, about 100 square kilometers of algae growing would replace current world consumption, and we could do it with robotic floating rigs.

There's definitely challenges to ocean-living but they aren't insurmountable. And it's the best shot we've got for short-term gaining our own jurisdiction without waiting for a nation-state to fail first, which we know won't likely result in a rise in libertarian governance ideas.

 
Autarchy: rule of the self by the self; the act of self ruling.
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Aristophanes is also correct that all of you (us) need to educate yourselves on the espionage/intelligence/information warfare field of study.

Thanks!  I'm glad someone noticed that.  The intelligence is a lot of stuff that we "already know," but it doesn't hurt to have academic sources to back the claims we sometimes need to make.

Select quotes from the HoIS:

I chickened out; copyright; the nature of the subject, you know how it is.  I typed them up though so if you want them PM me.

Well, here is one.  I don't think they'll sue me for it... =/

...Civil libertarians despair, and they don't know half of what is out there. (p. 59)

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Malachi replied on Thu, Feb 7 2013 6:05 PM

Ron Paul still received more airtime than any other libertarian before or since, though. In turn, he brought far more people to the libertarian way of thinking than anyone else, really. Before his presidential run in '08, calling yourself a "libertarian" would get lots of blank stares. Now, we're sufficiently important for conservatives and nuts to try to co-opt our message and for liberals to attack us, which is quite an improvement.

I've been calling myself a libertarian for a long time, and prior to '07 you would have gotten more blank stares at the mention of "Ron Paul" than by mentioning "libertarian" even though people tended to conflate the political philosophy with the political party of the same name. conservatives co-opting libertarian ideas and rhetoric is also nothing new. I'm a ron paul supporter, and I believe in the "many roads to liberty" strategy. that said, its easy to overstate his influence. a lot of ron paul supporters arent even real libertarians.

Agorism is all well and good, but it's effectiveness is... limited unless you have a lot of people already involved.

estimated 1.8 billion jobs worldwide. how many libertarians are there in the us? lets say about 4 non-voters for every gary johnson voter...about 5 million libertarians. the black market in the us is estimated to turn over between $1 trillion and $2 trillion annually. I'd say that agorism is already ahead of political libertarianism. all of that aside, your comment falls flat anyway because we have to start somewhere. additionally, political libertarianism is a performative contradiction. you say your argument against the state is economic in nature? then why not employ economic means to solve the problem? you say your argument against the state is moral in nature? how can it then be moral to run for office, or encourage people to vote? you say your argument against the state is based on legitimacy and consent, or the lack thereof? then why confer legitimacy upon the state by associating yourself with it, and why consent to the political process by filing paperwork with the state to participate in politics?

all of that being said, I return to the original argument: there are more counter-economicists than libertarians.

The State really doesn't care if you have some clever arrangement with Farmer Bob for radishes, and unless you have a very widespread net of Agorists in a given area from many walks of life you aren't achieving much through it. So that limits it's use to New Hampshire and MAYBE certain parts of the US during a disaster situation. It's also basically useless for bringing anyone else over, since everyone involved in only really interacting with everyone else who's already involved.

the state absolutely cares about unregulated markets, thats why they have things like atf, dea, fda, and the ftc in order to enforce the prohibitions on economic freedom. but I dont participate in free markets "because the state doesnt like it" I participate in free markets because they have goods and services that I prefer, and I am not a slave so I have no incentive to purchase those goods and services in a slave market (where those goods and services carry a premium anyway). what I am achieving is catallactic trade, meanwhile you can wait for the next ron paul to convince 535 criminals to agree that its ok for you to do what I already do. 

finally, its laughable for you to imply that unregulated markets dont have potential for growth in the presence of criminal aggressors who continually extend their regulation of markets that they do control. theres natural incentive for participation, its called "profit."

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Malachi replied on Thu, Feb 7 2013 6:10 PM

Seasteading because only it has the potential for a mass society of billions of members, and because ocean-travel is the cheapest way to facilitate trade.

as I said before, I support the "many roads" strategy. but my main problem with seasteading is that youre extremely vulnerable to one of the things that governments specialize in, mass murder. that said, I'm all for seasteading as it relates to anyone who wants to join/start a seastead. I think floating power plants that use the thermal gradient between the surface and the deep have a lot of potential, especially since they can produce desalinated water and hydrogen fuel depending on the design.

Keep the faith, Strannix. -Casey Ryback, Under Siege (Steven Seagal)
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