Is libertarianism compatible with human society?

Alan Roebuck writes:

Wondering whether Rand Paul’s name was intended to invoke Ayn Rand, I did a bit of Googling, and came upon the following from a Catholic blogger. I think it summarizes well a basic problem with libertarianism:

[Libertarians] seem far more concerned about freedom to do immoral things than they are about preserving a moral society in which we make sacrifices of ourselves to build a better world. That is why I do tend to think that on some level Ron Paul, Rand Paul and their followers [sub]scribe to the philosophy of Ayn Rand, that sacrifice on the part of the individual to build a better society is not “really” about building a better society but about being controlled by some evil entity who just wants power over us.

There are many writers who promulgate the idea that our government, not Islam or Mexican irredentism, is the real threat. But they’re making a fundamental mistake. Government per se is not an inherent threat, only malevolent government. And our govenrment is reformable by us, difficult as that may be, whereas Islam and foreign irredentism are not under our control.

- end of initial entry -

May 20

Van Wijk writes:

The short answer is No. Pure libertarianism sees the state as the first, last, and only source of evil in the world. If we as a society have a problem with a certain group (Muslims, Mexicans, blacks, etc), it’s obviously the state riling them up. Remove the state and all is goodness and light.

I recently asked libertarian blogger William Norman Grigg at Pro Libertate what liberty-loving people should do about the southern invasion if they shouldn’t depend on state border enforcement. His response was basically a shrug of the shoulders, ending in this quaint axiom: If the “solution” is a police state, the “problem” is one we can probably live with. Minimal border enforcement = police state. In fairness, I consider Grigg to be more of a Christian Anarchist than a libertarian, but the line between the two tends to blur.

It’s also worth noting that Grigg took strong exception to my statement that Mestizos are culturally collectivist. In my experience, libertarians tend toward extreme blindness with regard to any cultural differences, and are quick to make accusations of racism to delegitimize valid points. They also tend toward conspiracy theories. I’ve read several libertarian blogs that assert that Muslims are not an actual threat, but rather a bogeyman conjured up by the state in order to distract the masses.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at May 19, 2010 06:37 PM | Send

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