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I've spent some time among people who call themselves 'Libertarians', and while I might agree with them on how the government is trampling on peoples' civil liberties, that's probably where that agreement ends.

The more time I spent with them, the more problems I found with the people who wear the mantle and the things they claim to represent. I could make this into a detailed, long list, but in the end, it would all boil down to one thing: Libertarianism in the United States vehemently defends, to the point of rabid obsession, an ideology that is based purely on privilege.

This is made all the more obvious because they want to abolish everything Americans have fought for over the last century: The New Deal, Social Security, The Civil Rights Act, The Americans With Disabilities Act and anything else that gives the average person any sense of stability and drag us back to the 1920s, which wouldn't really be a huge stretch today.

They cloak all of this in really pretty words like Freedom and Liberty and about how "Gubmint is Force!". They mislead with their little diamond test where almost anyone can be a Libertarian. However, their actions speak louder than anything else, like when they side with the Republicans on every issue that is voted on, or they join the Rs during election season. After all, they've turned the Republican Party even more nuts than they already were.

To the Libertarians, the only thing that matters is property. If you don't own anything, you have no rights according to them...oh, and that magical fairy called the Free Market. Markets are their object of worship, along with money, power and status.

A country can have a dictatorship crushing people under an iron heel, but as long as there is a 'free' market, governments don't matter. Hell, not even the environment matters. That's what economists like Milton Friedman told us when he helped destroy Chile a few decades ago. Oh, and let's not forget Ronald Reagan. They worship him too, even though they'll vehemently deny it.

In a Libertarian utopia, the only way one can have freedom is if they have the money to pay for it. Otherwise, you're stuck working for shit wages for the billionaires, who they also vigorously defend.

See you around,

Homer

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (11+ / 0-)

    I write a series called 'My Life as an Aspie', documenting my experiences before and after my A.S. diagnosis as a way to help fellow Aspies and parents of Aspies and spread awareness. If I help just one person by doing this, then I've served a purpose.

    by Homer177 on Sat Feb 15, 2014 at 08:47:03 AM PST

  •  Re (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    toxin, coffeetalk, nextstep
    A country can have a dictatorship crushing people under an iron heel, but as long as there is a 'free' market, governments don't matter.
    No libertarian thinks this.

    (-5.50,-6.67): Left Libertarian
    Leadership doesn't mean taking a straw poll and then just throwing up your hands. -Jyrinx

    by Sparhawk on Sat Feb 15, 2014 at 08:55:49 AM PST

  •  "Libertarianism" is a thinly disguised (11+ / 0-)

    rationalization of selfishness.
    Their motto translates to: I got mine, fu(k you.

    If I ran this circus, things would be DIFFERENT!

    by CwV on Sat Feb 15, 2014 at 09:01:16 AM PST

  •  This is where you're incorrect (9+ / 0-)

    The iron boot has to be at the state or local level. It just can't be a federal iron boot.

    If the pilot's good, see, I mean if he's reeeally sharp, he can barrel that baby in so low... oh you oughta see it sometime. It's a sight. A big plane like a '52... varrrooom! Its jet exhaust... frying chickens in the barnyard!

    by Major Kong on Sat Feb 15, 2014 at 09:04:41 AM PST

  •  libertarianism with a class analysis: oxymoron /nt (0+ / 0-)

    Warning - some snark may be above‽ (-9.50; -7.03)‽ eState4Column5©2013 "I’m not the strapping young Muslim socialist that I used to be" - Barack Obama 04/27/2013 (@eState4Column5).

    by annieli on Sat Feb 15, 2014 at 09:12:23 AM PST

  •  Libertarianism is a shell (5+ / 0-)

    into which any form of government can fit. They just call it a private corporation rather than a government.

    warning: snark probably above

    by NE2 on Sat Feb 15, 2014 at 09:17:38 AM PST

  •  I debated libertarians before (7+ / 0-)

    They are just "anti-taxers" and "pro-gun".
    I've had them tell me point-blank that property rights was the most important right.
      They have lectured me about how everything should be privatized, including the police, jails, and even the courts. Their faith in "the markets" is unshakable. They are fundamentalists.

       You never hear them talking about freedom of speech and assembly or even the 4th or 5th Amendment. You never hear them talking about the size of the military.

       They aren't real libertarians. They are capitalists first and foremost. Personal freedom is actually not their thing. They just want to the chance to be the exploiters.

    None are so hopelessly enslaved, as those who falsely believe they are free. The truth has been kept from the depth of their minds by masters who rule them with lies. -Johann von Goethe

    by gjohnsit on Sat Feb 15, 2014 at 09:46:20 AM PST

    •  If libertarians actually believed in free markets (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      gjohnsit, boudi08, MugWumpBlues, wader, Matt Z

      They would vehemently oppose monopolies and figure out a way to level the playing field for obtaining the critical information needed to make informed decisions (a free media unbiased by economic concerns). They would support limits on the size , reach and market share of corporations and oppose the maxim that money is speech.  However they support none of these viewpoints instead they support the unlimited power of private capital.  The end game of that is feudalism or corporate totalitarianism which is no better for the majority of citizens than a totalitarian state. The fact that a libertarian think tank like the Cato Institute is financed by the Koch brothers and that David Koch ran for president as a libertarian is proof enough for me that libertarian ideology is just a fig leaf for the ideology of elitism, greed and corporate feudalism.

      •  The ideology of capitalism (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        wader, NoMoreLies, Matt Z
        They would vehemently oppose monopolies and figure out a way to level the playing field for obtaining the critical information needed to make informed decisions (a free media unbiased by economic concerns).
         The problem is that they think they already do.
          Their faith in the markets is based on an idea. Not on reality.
          They think that the markets will solve the problem of monopolies by themselves. Historical examples otherwise be damned.

           Their idea of capitalism doesn't match up to reality, and when capitalism fails it is always the fault of something else. For instance, if government didn't actually exist then the markets would take care of problem X.
          And since governments will always exist, then there is always an excuse. And even if government in no way caused the problem, then the problem doesn't actually exist except for the whining.

          We are dealing with a religion here, but it isn't a religion of freedom. It's a religion of capitalism.

        None are so hopelessly enslaved, as those who falsely believe they are free. The truth has been kept from the depth of their minds by masters who rule them with lies. -Johann von Goethe

        by gjohnsit on Sat Feb 15, 2014 at 11:09:15 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  These labels... (5+ / 0-)

    "progressive," "liberal," "libertarian," and the like have become so malleable that they're nearly devoid of meaning anymore.

    Put a hundred so-called libertarians in a room, and you'll probably have a hundred different sets of ideas.

    Or look at this site.

    Most folks here consider themselves to be liberals/progressives. And yet we fight every day.

    Sure, I think most of us agree on most things, and the fiercest fighting is done at the edges or over the smallest of differences, but, still, these labels aren't as definitive as perhaps folks want them to be.

    How about I believe in the unlucky ones?

    by BenderRodriguez on Sat Feb 15, 2014 at 09:55:41 AM PST

  •  Would Work for Squirrels (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Homer177

    Watching them out the window, all born in the same trees and let the fittest survive.
    So I'd be willing to try Libertarianism if we abolished inherited wealth and distributed the money to individuals to buy themselves some bootstraps.
    But since historical attempts to do this have so far only resulted in a new set of oppressors, I'll settle for the liberal idea of the government safety net, promoting advancement for ordinary people, and curbing the power of accumulated wealth to kill competition and corrupt government.
    As long as you protect inherited wealth and monopoly capitalism, Libertarianism has nothing to do with the merit of the individual.

  •  selfish and vague (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    boudi08, wader

    I bought several books trying to get an agreed definition of liberterianism and its simply not possible.

    I think Homer pretty much nailed it. Most of the people I know who call themselves Liberterians are basically people who want programs they themselves like, which benefit them directly.  I know a couple who worked for the government, retired early with very generous disability benefits, but feel basically every other government employee is a freeloader.

    Guys like the Pauls I consider almost jokes.  The Dad was quirky but somehow mostly honest.  The son, current Senator from Kentucky, is a scoundrel often working against the interests of people who vote for him.   Funny when he plagarized the current lawsuit he filed against Obama et al over the NSA surveillance; funny sad that he did not file such a lawsuit over the more intrusive and onerous surveillance of the GW Bush years.  (When it got explained to the law professors on the Volokh blog, their comeback was that since the democrats are all liars, the Bush program was still better).  

    Will Rogers had a good quip: Liberty works a lot better in speeches.  

    “Everyone is ignorant, only on different subjects.” ― Will Rogers (Of course this also applies to me.)

    by MugWumpBlues on Sat Feb 15, 2014 at 11:04:56 AM PST

  •  libertarians (0+ / 0-)

    mostly embarrassed former republicans who no longer care for the brand.  I identify with them on a couple things but not enough to like them.

    Politics is a contact sport

    by boudi08 on Sat Feb 15, 2014 at 11:07:50 AM PST

  •  Okay -Let's go to school on this subject, and (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Homer177

    then we will be able to post intelligent commentary. Background: I started posting about the danger posed by "pure" Libertarians back before Obama was elected the first time, and I got little or no response from the community here.

    I sincerely urge everybody who has the slightest interest in the subject of Libertarianism to take a "free" trip over to Wikipedia and read "HISTORY OF THE LIBERTARIAN PARTY (UNITED STATES)" Here is the opening - "The LIBERTARIAN PARTY was formed in Colorado Springs in the home of Luke Zell by a group of individuals led by David Nolan on December 11, 1971, after several months of debate among the members of a committee to "Form a Libertarian Party", founded July 17." Now get this next line from Wikipedia - "The formation was prompted in part by price controls and the END OF THE GOLD STANDARD implemented by President Richard Nixon. The Libertarian Party viewed the dominant Republican and Democratic parties as having diverged from what they viewed as the libertarian principles of the American Founding Fathers".

    Other reports that I have read stated that David Nolan was so upset and furious with Nixon's ending of the Gold Standard that he would often go off on long drawn out personally directed rants against Nixon. So one must assume that it was this directive by Nixon that served as the prime motivator towards the formation of the Libertarian Party as a legitimate third political party in the U.S. What is important here is that Gold Standard politics is not a John Q. Public common man issue. It is obviously an issue of most concern to the wealthy investor capitalist segment of the American public.

    Unfortunately since this is a comment there is neither time nor space to adequately chronicle the history of the Libertarian party particularly through the years of Ronald Reagan's rise to power. However I will leave you with this; there are two factions within the Libertarian Ideological Party. The first group who I call the "PURISTS" are closer in concept to the founders of the Party. The PURISTS visualize as their goal an America WITH NO GOVERNMENT period! The alternate group of Libertarians I call the "PRAGMATICS". This group of Libertarians argue for the barest minimal size government. They also recognize that some government services are essential, like an available military along with law enforcement facilities. Many Libertarian Pragmatics left the Libertarian Party to join with Ronald Reagan in response to his presidential campaign call for minimal government.  

    Lastly the Libertarians that have been recently elected to Congress with the support of the Tea Party Express unfortunately are from the PURIST faction of the Libertarian Ideology. Most notably the 86 Tea Part/ Libertarian/Republican Congressmen elected to the House in 2010 are from the PURIST group, and they have been effective in shutting down virtually all meaningful legislative work in the House; simply because they do not want government to exist never mind work.

  •  Property is a construct, not a right (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Homer177

    libertarians who understand that, I get along with well.  Most in the US who identify as libertarian allow property "rights" to trump personal rights.

    Iron sharpens Iron. Normal is a dryer setting. STOP illegal immigration NOW! -- Make it LEGAL. If Corporations are People--Let's draft them.

    by benamery21 on Sat Feb 15, 2014 at 02:56:05 PM PST

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