Hard Core Libertarians – Ignorant or Delusional? April 19, 2010Posted by Jim Satterfield in Does Not Compute, Government.
I had to really think on that title. Sir Charles at Cogitamus writes about what he describes as The Libertarian Pathology. Reading the article and following the links to the actual articles written by libertarians definitely illustrates why I find Libertarianism to be as realistic as Communism when it comes to looking at the actual human condition and how people think of things. If you don’t necessarily want to follow every link I did here is some of what I found, directly referenced by Sir Charles and not.
In “How Free Were American Women in the Gilded Age?” Bryan Caplan attempts to make a case that women were, as libertarians ought to see it, freer in 1880 than they are now. The freedom to vote is dismissed as not proving that women were denied their freedoms just because they couldn’t vote in defense of them. He actually writes this little gem.
In what ways, then, were American women in 1880 less free than men? Most non-libertarians will naturally answer that women couldn’t vote. But from a libertarian point of view, voting is at most instrumentally valuable.
Does anyone else think that if true, this says something not all that good about the libertarian point of view as applied to the real world? And when criticized for the many weaknesses in his article his defense just wasn’t any better than the original article.
The first article referred to by the Cogitamus article is this one by Jacob Hornberger. But…that one is actually a defense of this article from this criticism by David Boaz. Got that all straight now? But what’s interesting is that apparently the section of the first article where he posits a tortuous defense of those who compare Obama’s economic philosophy to that of Hitler wasn’t deserving of hardly any criticism. If you want an idea of the strength of this argument consider that almost the first thing in it is a link to a part of the Social Security Administration web site that has an engraving of Otto Von Bismarck. Hornberger finds this absolutely shocking. How dare a website of the United States government have an image of a 19th Century chancellor of Germany? Why, so that it can glorify him as the creator of the first social security system, of course. Glorify a European socialist? What part of the SSA website has committed this heinous crime? That would be the section on the history of the concept of social security. You know, history, that thing that apparently shouldn’t include anything other than Americans if it is on a United States government website?
So, after considering those articles and others that I didn’t take the time to link to, do you understand why I came up with the title for this post?