First, the obvious. Not all libertarians are alike. The same, of course, is true for conservatives and liberals.
That said, I’ve had my fill of libertarians acting like they are the only ones who believe in a free society. That’s total bullshit, of course. I don’t know anyone who likes “state oppression,” do you? The debate needs to be – oh, eff that. I’m done debating strawman arguments like that.
Where I really part company with libertarians is in their naive belief that markets operate in the way that Murray Rothbard describes them. They don’t. That “philosophy” requires a belief in something called, “Equal and simultaneous information.” It’s actually how the financial services industry is supposed to operate but doesn’t. And, why doesn’t it? Because of the lack of vigorously enforced and sensible laws and regulations.
What’s worse is when libertarians use phraseology like “state oppression.” They come off sounding like they have a tinfoil fear of the state.
Yes, of course, there are things about “the state” that libertarians and I want to change; from NDAA to NSA to KXL. Their incessant vilifying of “the state,” however, without including corporations and Big Money as the driving forces is, at best, disingenuous and, at worst, revealing of their libertarian naivety or outright corporatist obfuscation.
Remember this. WE ARE THE STATE.
Unlike government, corporate boards – and let’s not be naive about whatever paltry shares we as individuals may hold – are not elected by we ordinary citizens. We have no way of holding corporations accountable EXCEPT through the state regardless of the fantasy of the Invisible Hand libertarians may worship.
We do – or, rather, we’re supposed to, but too many of us don’t – elect those who are supposed to represent us in our government. We can control that.
For me and for as long as I’m able, I’m going to try to influence my fellow Americans to vote against libertarians (and conservatives) because of how their philosophies manifest into their policies; policies that put all but a few wealthy and powerful individuals in real peril because they stem from beliefs based on the fallacy perpetuated by people like Rothbard, the Kochs, the Cato Institute, the Heritage Foundation, and all the devotees of Milton Friedman.
Libertarians are probably not Statists, whatever they think that’s supposed to mean and whatever is meant by it when the “purists” accuse Rand Paul of it. He and his “mainstream” libertarians are, however, most certainly Corporatists in the mold of his fore-bearers.
And that, dear reader, is the dirty little secret of libertarianism as it’s being practiced today. It is a front for Corporatism, and it’s far more dangerous to our society, to our democracy, and to our planet than some misplaced and misinformed hand-wringing about “the state” somehow holding back “free markets.”
Call them out on it, and vote against every single one of them and their big brother proxies, the Republicans.
That is, of course, unless you prefer to be just another resource used by the rich and powerful to become more rich and powerful at your expense.