Tuesday, May 10, 2016

True Believers

Most big institutions started out small. Christianity, the Republican Party, women's suffrage, most political and social and religious movements. Of course, some stay small. Some because they simply don't have merit, some because their adherents want them to stay small, or seem to, because they keep doing stuff to keep the movement from growing. I've noticed this with tiny religions. Some stay small, of course, because it has principles that appeal to only a few. But others seem to be dominated by members who take downright delight in being so exclusive that they can feel really unique and just so much smarter and more virtuous than everybody else. Therefore they behave in such a way as to avoid gaining converts, either by making up gratuitously stringent requirements for membership, or by just plain being obnoxious and off-putting to outsiders. If you keep the movement small, you see, you can continue to dominate it.

A non-religious group (arguably) that behaves that way is the Objectivist movement, followers of Ayn Rand. I've been around them, and while some of them actively try to attract adherents, others of them really like excluding people, and will very often present their philosophy in such a way that listeners will actually misunderstand it. Rand herself was ambiguous in that regard, I think really wanting to influence people, but very often behaving in such a way as to repulse people, partly by her arrogant attitude, and also by that method of deliberately being misunderstood.

And close to the Objectivists are libertarians of a certain breed. I like to call them "flaky libertarians," but others have suggested "spergitarians" for them, because of their aspergy behavior. What they do (and many of them brag about it) is to present the most extreme aspects of libertarianism up-front, to make sure that only those equally inclined to repulse the masses will be interested. And if that isn't enough, a large contingent of them insist on thinking up new extremes to extend libertarianism to, including craziness like open borders, tolerance of public sexual exhibitionism, and anarchism. All of these things are guaranteed to either make libertarianism sound insane to the vast majority, or to destroy the country if ever implemented, or, even better, both.

And when I point this out to them, such names they call me. A popular one is "statist," which doesn't mean anything at all to 99% of humanity, and which sounds like nutcase jargon (which it is). Others are "racist," "authoritarian," "sexist," "xenophobe," "transphobe," and the current trending one, "Islamophobe." And those terms convince most people right away that "libertarians" are just a faction of liberals or progressives, which in fact many of these bozos are, whether they realize it or not.

So I'll say it again. Libertarianism is best described as the political philosophy of the Founding Fathers. It calls for government, but only as much government as necessary. It calls for keeping out immigrants who don't fit, or who would change the character of the country. It calls for a foreign policy that puts the country's interests first. And it calls for what Lindbergh, and later Pat Buchanan, and now Donald Trump call "America First," that the welfare and fate of our citizens is the responsibility of our government, and that taking care of nonAmericans comes second, if at all.

If it includes something the Founding Fathers would have disapproved of as a group, like anarchism, public exhibitionism, talking dirty to children, inviting cross-dressers to the ladies' room, welcoming everybody from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe to cross our borders and do whatever they damn please, and other fashionably idiotic ideas, it's not "libertarianism." It's just the same smug virtue-signaling you can get cheaper and with more variety from liberals and neocons.

So that contingent of "libertarians" certainly fits the criteria. Big frogs in a very small pond, who damn well want to keep the pond small, so they can keep being big frogs. Otherwise, there they sit, in their mothers' basements, stroking their....beards, looking for some other tiny pond they can hop into and dominate.
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P. S. I alreadt got a reaction from one of the Spergy Libertarians! I have to admit, his rebuttal is brilliantly witty. He wrote:

"Wow... just... wow..."

You can't make this stuff up, folks!

2 comments:

  1. Old West with technology: Cody, Wyoming. Or up the road in Powell which is less touristy and has a Makerspace. God, Guns, and Gigabit fiber. And only 5 Muslim refugees in the last 15 years. And about as libertarian as you can get in the USA.
    But that isn't really what the libertarians want. Notice how they either live or really want to live in New York or California or somewhere else where regulation is ridiculous, or perhaps where they can whine the most, one blogger lives in Virginia and complains a lot.
    It will be interesting in New Hampshire as the Free State Project got their 20k so should start moving there. We'll see if open borders and coexistence with "statists" works.

    Another thing is there seems to be a set of libertarians - also altheists - that Pride, the great sin, turns them into some variant of SJWs where they are virtue signaling instead of engaging in any kind of reasoning, there is a narrative, and a parallel to white knighting. It may be less sperging than taking the r-selected rabbit screeching from wave goodbye feminism into a different set of beliefs.

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  2. There is masterpiece of an essay by Dr Michael Huemer on why he does not go along with Ann Rand. Mainly he agree with a good deal of what she says. But he noted that in her writings there is a certain ambiguity. Even sloppy reasoning which I had completely missed when i read her stuff.

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