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Sun Sep 15, 2013, 04:54 AM

11 questions to see if libertarians are hypocrites

[div class="excerpt" style="background-color:#dcdcdc; padding-bottom:5px; border:1px solid #bfbfbf; border-bottom:none; border-radius:0.4615em 0.4615em 0em 0em; box-shadow:3px 3px 3px #999999;"]R.J. ESKOW
[div class="excerpt" style="background-color:#f0f0f0; border:1px solid #bfbfbf; border-top:none; border-radius:0em 0em 0.4615em 0.4615em; box-shadow:3px 3px 3px #999999;"]Libertarians have a problem. Their political philosophy all but died out in the mid- to late-20th century, but was revived by billionaires and corporations that found them politically useful. And yet libertarianism retains the qualities that led to its disappearance from the public stage, before its reanimation by people like the Koch brothers: It doesn’t make any sense.

They call themselves “realists” but rely on fanciful theories that have never predicted real-world behavior. They claim that selfishness makes things better for everybody, when history shows exactly the opposite is true. They claim that a mythical “free market” is better at everything than the government is, yet when they really need government protection, they’re the first to clamor for it.

That’s no reason not to work with them on areas where they’re in agreement with people like me. In fact, the unconventionality of their thought has led libertarians to be among this nation’s most forthright and outspoken advocates for civil liberties and against military interventions.

Merriam-Webster defines “hypocrisy” as “feigning to be what one is not or to believe what one does not.” We aren’t suggesting every libertarian is a hypocrite. But there’s an easy way to find out...

More at:
http://www.salon.com/2013/09/12/11_questions_to_see_if_libertarians_are_hypocrites/

or the original from

http://www.alternet.org/economy/11-questions-you-should-ask-libertarians-see-if-theyre-hypocrites

I wish this article would have done more to separate left wing civil libertarians from the Crazies of the right.


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Reply 11 questions to see if libertarians are hypocrites (Original post)
LostOne4Ever Sep 2013 OP
chervilant Sep 2013 #1
sendero Sep 2013 #2
Warren DeMontague Sep 2013 #4
davidn3600 Sep 2013 #17
sendero Sep 2013 #20
Gravitycollapse Sep 2013 #3
secondvariety Sep 2013 #5
Scuba Sep 2013 #6
Gravitycollapse Sep 2013 #8
Scuba Sep 2013 #10
Gravitycollapse Sep 2013 #12
Orrex Sep 2013 #22
Orrex Sep 2013 #9
Gravitycollapse Sep 2013 #11
Orrex Sep 2013 #13
LostOne4Ever Sep 2013 #16
sulphurdunn Sep 2013 #19
LostOne4Ever Sep 2013 #24
LostOne4Ever Sep 2013 #14
OneGrassRoot Sep 2013 #7
LostOne4Ever Sep 2013 #15
NYC_SKP Sep 2013 #26
n2doc Sep 2013 #18
disidoro01 Sep 2013 #21
LostOne4Ever Sep 2013 #23
disidoro01 Sep 2013 #25
LostOne4Ever Sep 2013 #27
disidoro01 Sep 2013 #28
gopiscrap Sep 2013 #29

Response to LostOne4Ever (Original post)

Sun Sep 15, 2013, 06:09 AM

1. Reading further...

Perhaps none is more extreme than Peter Thiel, who made his fortune with PayPal. In one infamous rant, Thiel complained about allowing women and people he describes as “welfare beneficiaries” (which might be reasonably interpreted as “minorities”) to vote. “Since 1920,” Thiel fulminated, “the extension of the franchise to (these two groups) have turned ‘capitalist democracy’ into an oxymoron.”

With this remark, Thiel let something slip that extreme libertarians prefer to keep quiet: A lot of them don’t like democracy very much. In their world, democracy is a poor substitute for the iron-fisted rule of wealth, administered by those who hold the most of it.


And, some of the comments are from "libertarians" who hold a completely different definition of their ideology.

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Response to LostOne4Ever (Original post)

Sun Sep 15, 2013, 06:33 AM

2. Impossible to separate them..

... they are the same people. People with who I agree on just about everything, so long as it is not business or economics, in which case I vehemently disagree.

Having studies these guys' writings for a long time, there are many holes in their thought processes but one stands out. They believe that the captains of industry/leaders of business, being accomplished and hardworking, are all automatically men/women of high moral character who will act for the good of all.

Nothing could be further from the truth, but the Galt myth has really taken hold of these people.

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Response to sendero (Reply #2)

Sun Sep 15, 2013, 06:44 AM

4. "Don't servants create lunch?"

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Response to sendero (Reply #2)

Sun Sep 15, 2013, 08:30 AM

17. What you say about corporate leaders can also be said about government leaders

 

Libertarians assume that captains of industry are hardworking people who will ultimately act for the good of all.

Liberal authoritarians think the same way about government leaders.

Both are actually wrong...when you look at history. Power can and usually is abused. Neither side takes into account what to do when corruption and/or authoritarianism takes over.

Our founding father felt the same way with this. That government is something that is needed....a necessary evil. So they will create government, but they will handcuff it and restrict it. For the last 200 years, we have seen slow and steady weakening of those handcuffs. The 4th amendment is now meaningless for example. The government getting a warrant is now nothing more than a formality. We are being spied on. We lead the world in incarceration...by far. 2nd place isn't even close.

So libertarians do have a point as far as government power is concerned. One big difference is that corrupt corporations don't have armies. They don't have police. So when they go out of control, the government can easily bring them back under control. The government though has police, they have a military, and when the government goes out of control.....and you attempt to bring them back under control....people will die.

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Response to davidn3600 (Reply #17)

Sun Sep 15, 2013, 08:48 AM

20. I agree totally..

.... but in today's US there is very little difference. Our government leaders are clearly directed by others, one presumes business leaders.

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Response to LostOne4Ever (Original post)

Sun Sep 15, 2013, 06:41 AM

3. If you don't understand the difference between Libertarian and libertarianism, don't write about it.

On general principle, I cannot take this article seriously as it fails to follow the conventions of the English language.

If you are speaking of the Libertarian party and its movement, you have to continue to capitalize the L. If you are speaking of libertarian philosophy, you do not capitalize the L unless it is otherwise necessary. Even if the specific type of libertarianism being referenced is right-wing,at the very least on a purely theoretical basis, right-wing libertarianism is still distinct from Libertarian.

If you must refer to the libertarianism of Libertarians, you would still have to refer to it as Libertarian libertarianism (spoken this could be called "Big L Libertarian libertarianism" or simply "Big L Libertarianism" But the bottom line is that if you are referring to Libertarians, there must be a capitalized form of the word used at all times. Otherwise, the article devolves into a rather unfortunate attack upon libertarianism and not Libertarian libertarianism. To many that may seem trivial to focus upon. But to the masses of left-wing libertarians, we get kind of tired of people not understanding the difference. And R.J. ESKOW pretty clearly does not understand the difference.

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Response to Gravitycollapse (Reply #3)

Sun Sep 15, 2013, 07:01 AM

5. Holy cow.

Your explanation reminds me of Clinton's "It depends on what the meaning of 'is' is".

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Response to Gravitycollapse (Reply #3)

Sun Sep 15, 2013, 07:17 AM

6. Do you know the difference? Would you be willing to 'splain it to us?

 

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Response to Scuba (Reply #6)

Sun Sep 15, 2013, 07:30 AM

8. Well, for instance, left-wing libertarianism is many faceted.

I follow a libertarian socialist bend. Which places great emphasis on anti-authoritarianism, in many cases state anarchy, and voluntary association in economic socialism.

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Response to Gravitycollapse (Reply #8)

Sun Sep 15, 2013, 07:38 AM

10. So is that a "no"?

 

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Response to Scuba (Reply #10)

Sun Sep 15, 2013, 07:46 AM

12. I just described the clear distinctive difference between Libertarians and left-wing libertarians...

You, I assume, already know the foundation of the Libertarian party?

All libertarians emphasis individual liberty. The difference is how this is attained and what other objectives are concerned.

Most left-wing libertarianism involves the decentralization of power, often in the form of anarchy, and volunteer association in economic socialism.

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Response to Gravitycollapse (Reply #12)

Sun Sep 15, 2013, 08:58 AM

22. You are exactly demonstrating the problem of clinging to the little-l term

In any discussion of this type, you're going to have to spend a lot of time convincing the other person that you actually know what you're talking about and that you're not simply playing some sort of verbal sleight of hand.

Is it worth it, solely for the sake of clinging to a term after it's been overtaken?

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Response to Gravitycollapse (Reply #3)

Sun Sep 15, 2013, 07:34 AM

9. In 20+ years of discussing this subject, I have found in nearly all cases...

that the only ones who insist upon the "big L/little L" distinction are those who want to enjoy the benefits of Libertarian smugness but don't want to be called out for it.

The word's current meaning has wholly eclipsed whatever definition it might once have held, and it's pointless to cling to that obsolete definition when there are other ways to refer to "little l" libertarianism. But if you dig in your heels and insist upon the distinction, then you'll demonstrate only that you'd rather debate 'big L/little L" instead of whatever the actual topic might be.

Time either to pick a new word or to stop complaining when people don't embrace your definition.

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Response to Orrex (Reply #9)

Sun Sep 15, 2013, 07:40 AM

11. The Libertarian party hijacked a well-established, diverse historical term...

We are here to reclaim it. They turned it into a pejorative. And we are here to take it all back. Words are important. And we should not so easily abandon them because a bunch of idiots claim it by planting the Gadsden flag.

This article adds greatly to the confusion. And that is exactly what we don't need. You want the Libertarian party to go away? Take away the power it wields by misusing the term libertarian and you reduce it to a series of insane, racist, classicist idiocies.

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Response to Gravitycollapse (Reply #11)

Sun Sep 15, 2013, 07:53 AM

13. You'd be better off picking another term

Why waste time or energy rehabilitating a word that is literally synonymous with morally bankrupt greed?

Let the big-L crowd have its word, because they're not going to give it up. They're also big on posthumously co-opting history's heavy-hitters like Jefferson and Madison, declaring them to be Libertarians post mortem. They're still a bunch of insane, racist, classist idiots regardless.

"Reclaiming" the little-L word will do nothing except perhaps to score a trivial rhetorical victory among internet quibblers.

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Response to Orrex (Reply #13)


Response to Gravitycollapse (Reply #11)

Sun Sep 15, 2013, 08:44 AM

19. "What's in a name?

 

That which we call a rose, by any other name..." is most often a distinction without a difference.

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Response to Gravitycollapse (Reply #11)

Sun Sep 15, 2013, 09:29 AM

24. Sorry that was not my intention in posting this

If anything I posted it because I wanted to highlight the lies and hypocrisy of Right-wing Libertarianism and how they pay lip service to social freedom only to sacrifice those same freedoms on the hateful alter of "states rights."

I agree that the article muddied the waters with its terminology, but I still thought it made some good points. This is why I posted about wishing the article had done a better job of differentiating left wing libertarianism from the crazies on the right.

Honestly, I don't even like calling them "Libertarians," because they don't give a shit about real liberties. All they care about is greed and money.

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Response to Gravitycollapse (Reply #3)

Sun Sep 15, 2013, 08:01 AM

14. I see myself as both a liberal and a leftwing libertarian

And I was unaware of this distinction. Thank you for pointing it out.

I posted this article in part because I feel that the anarcho-capitalists of the right have stolen the term libertarian and corrupted it beyond recognition. They have destroy the reputation of a very noble philosophy and turned it into another chain of corporate authoritarianism to hold down and oppress the people.

I liked this particular article because it showed some of the hypocrisy of the Libertarian Party and how they flat out lie about what they really believe. For instance saying they are socially liberal and support things like reproductive rights and marriage equality and then when push comes to shove they throw social liberalism under the bus of states rights.

I just wanted to highlight an article showing it them for what they really are: corporate authoritarians.

I will make sure to always use the correct convention when referring to them versus real libertarianism.

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Response to LostOne4Ever (Original post)

Sun Sep 15, 2013, 07:17 AM

7. Question about articles appearing in multiple outlets...

Does anyone know how that works?

Salon credits Alternet as posting the article originally, but they still publish MUCH more than four paragraphs (which I thought was the standard rule).

Many online sites publish OTHERS' articles in full, without any original content that I can see.

(HuffPo -- which I tend to dislike strongly for many reasons -- often does a 2-3 paragraph summary of an original article and that's it.)

I thought that was a huge no-no, even as recently as a few years ago.

Does anyone know what has changed? Do sites like Salon and Alternet and a few newer sites (more progressive) have an agreement that they can share one another's content so long as links are provided or something?



This has puzzled me for a while now.

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Response to OneGrassRoot (Reply #7)

Sun Sep 15, 2013, 08:02 AM

15. Afraid I have no clue

Maybe they ask the authors directly for permission? Or have a pre-existing agreement?

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Response to OneGrassRoot (Reply #7)

Sun Sep 15, 2013, 10:57 AM

26. It may be by contract or mutual agreement.

 

But I don't know to be honest.

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Response to LostOne4Ever (Original post)

Sun Sep 15, 2013, 08:38 AM

18. No need to ask. They are.

I've never met someone who espouses that philosophy who isn't a hypocrite. Invariably they want to complain about the government but don't have any problems enjoying the benefits that a government gives them.

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Response to LostOne4Ever (Original post)

Sun Sep 15, 2013, 08:58 AM

21. Broad brush statements

Attacking anyone who believes in part of the Libertarian Philosophy for being racist or hate filled is kinda like attacking Democrats for getting off on killing children with Drones. I do sense a trend though. Many who attack anything libertarian sit back and watch (perhaps with glee) this administration kill civilians but can't muster up even a weak rebuttal.
This is why I've started moving away from the party. You all who attacked libertarians want me to get in line with killing people without knowing who we are killing and you also want me to support the fat cats in this country who drove us into financial ruin for their own benefit. They don't need our help, we need to speak out against this murder and mayhem, this destruction of our working and middle class as well.
Be honest libertarian haters, would you stand with a libertarian who is against drone killing or would you support drone killing because a libertarian is against it?

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Response to disidoro01 (Reply #21)

Sun Sep 15, 2013, 09:26 AM

23. Actually

I posted this because I want to reclaim the term libertarianism from the right wing. I view right wing Libertarians as liars and crooks who have corrupted a noble philosophy. When I think libertarian I think of the ACLU and civil libertarians.

Yet thanks to the right wing's propaganda machine the term has come more and more to refer to Laissez- faire captialism or corporate cronyism of the Libertarian Party. I want them to be exposed for the closet authoritarians that they are.


I am against attacking Syria, spying, and very very much against drones.

BUT!

I am also fiercely against the policies of the Republican party (which not only support militarism and authoratarianism but the very economic policies that have hurt us as a country) and because of that I am a fierce partisan on behalf of whatever party can best stop them.

That is the Democratic party.

So while I support the administration overall, I DISAGREE WITH THEM VEHEMENTLY on the specific issue you mentioned.

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Response to LostOne4Ever (Reply #23)

Sun Sep 15, 2013, 09:55 AM

25. While I agree

with you, I am using the same small minded logic that allows the democrats to attack anyone who espouses a libertarian philosophy. You sound like you understand that libertarianism is is not and was not founded in right wing ideology but many who attack it do not understand that. Those same cowards crawl into a corner when we discuss the democratic administrations drone policy and the protections given to wall street and big banks.

"Republican party (which not only support militarism and authoratarianism but the very economic policies that have hurt us as a country)" This here, you can't deny that this is also current Democratic policy as well can you?

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Response to disidoro01 (Reply #25)

Sun Sep 15, 2013, 11:05 AM

27. I don't deny

I don't deny that the democratic party has and does engage in that type of behavior, I do feel that they are far far better than the republicans.

The democrats (overall, not in its entirety) did vote for raising the minimum wage and curtailing the NSA spying powers. Obamacare is a mess, but it is still a foot in the door for a possible single payer system in the future.

Of course, they were on the losing side on spying and minimum wage. I am also keenly aware that the sole dissenting vote on the Patriot act in the Senate was from a democrat, Russ Feingold.

I also feel the democrats have done a much better job on same sex marriage and separation of church and state. The republicans, if they had their way, would make us look like Russia when it comes to LGBT issues and like a Christian Iran.

But I am also keenly aware that overall the dems are also owned by wall street, and will sell us out on social issues the moment public opinion turns. That said, they still are 100x better than the Republicans and so long as we are shackled by this two party system our only hope of getting ANYTHING accomplished.

I am indeed aware of libertarianism's leftist past. Anywhere else in the world the libertarianism is associated deeply with the left. I like to note to people that the ACLU is also a libertarian organisation and has been around since the 1920s while the LP has only been around since the 1970s to demonstrate this concept.

I desperately want to reclaim the term libertarian for the left.

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Response to LostOne4Ever (Reply #27)

Sun Sep 15, 2013, 12:47 PM

28. The left

doesn't want it. They refuse to look at history. They equate it with all sorts of evil yet refuse to address what is going on within the party now and what is happening within the country and worldwide in the name of democracy. The behavior of the party is driving some away and the response within DU? you can read it above and in many threads. But not once will those who feel so strongly about the evils of libertarianism discuss the Presidents drone policy in which all males between the ages of 16 and 50 are considered terrorists and any large gathering of people is suspect, whether it is for a wedding or funeral. Not once will they discuss why too big to fail has gotten bigger. Or why the working class is being destroyed. Will not discuss TPP.
Certainly the Democratic Party is 100 times better than the Republicans but that has given those in the party protection to behave in any manner they see fit. Democrats do not need to worry about unfair trade agreements, unfair banking systems, wall street, the economic despair of the working poor and working class, killing of innocents, drone strikes. At the end of the day, they understand that all they need to do is offer platitudes or throw a bone. Frankly, I think all they need to say is "hey, we are not Republicans".
You touched on it, the only noticeable difference between parties, in what they do, not what they say, is on lgbt issues. A single issue.

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Response to LostOne4Ever (Original post)

Sun Sep 15, 2013, 06:13 PM

29. This is good, I like it!

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