Sunday, May 25, 2014

Libertarianism

I am sometimes identified as a libertarian. While I am not unsympathetic, many years have passed since that label applied to me, if it ever did. What is needed now is a detailed enumeration of what is living - and still potentially useful - in libertarianism, and what has been rightly deposited on the ash heap of history. Here are a few suggestions. 

USEFUL. 1) There is No Free Lunch - "free stuff" has to be paid for; 2) foreign interventions must always be viewed with suspicion; and 3) government subsidies create constituencies that make them difficult to liquidate or even cut back. Look at the fate of Hagel's modest efforts at military reform. 

DEAD 1) the fetish of deregulation; 2) use of lawsuits to curb pollution - after the fact; and 3) (I must step on some toes here) the cult of the charlatan Ayn Rand, who absurdly claimed to be a universal genius. 

Concededly, this tentative inventory is but a sample of a work in progress,

2 Comments:

Blogger A. Claude Courouve said...

Happy to see that you are active on the web. So am I.

2:21 PM  
Anonymous dymphna said...

Oh my...you stopped. But thanks for the down-vote on Rand.

When my son was in high school, we were looking at college scholarship opportunities. One of them was an essay on Ms Rand, or on one of her beliefs. I knew her name, I'd seen the raves about Objectivism (if that's the right word??)...but not much else. She seemed a static figure, not a person whose thoughts I'd run into in any coherent form.

Already too-long story shortened: at my suggestion, my son set about reading one of her books. It wasn't long before I heard the book hit the wall and he came stomping downstairs. I do believe "charlatan" was one of the epithets thrown around that evening.

Moral of the story: about that proposed essay, my son claimed there are some things, that if you do for money, your karmic debt becomes unpayable.

Of course he now has an unpayable college debt - and he was a STEM major. He figures he may have that criminal charge paid off by the time he's forty.

Wish we could help, but we were wiped out by the banksters in 2008. Just another casualty of the endemic corruption.

I also wish we were going to be around to watch the Great Demographic Implosion due sometime in mid-century...

1:12 PM  

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