UPDATE: For those of you who are asking, here is the link to my book; The Great Divide Game.*
Yes, I used to be one. I admit it freely and I admit that I still have some sympathy in that regard.
When I was in high school I probably qualified as a liberal. I was certainly qualified as an Omega. I will say in my defense that neither of those things were entirely my fault. However, I believed whole heatedly in everything the TV was telling me about what was right and good and also was wrong and bad.
I bought into left wing equalist propaganda that was getting shoveled at us from every direction. And naturally viewed myself as one of the elect for holding the right opinions. And yet I never quite fit in. There was something wrong there and I knew it. In my heart I didn’t believe in their view of the world.
There was the overlying theme that America was just plain evil, that I couldn’t buy into.
In my second semester of college I needed an easy A, to pad my GPA so I took a course in Science Fiction (*deeply embarrassed shudder*) . And one of the books assigned was The Moon is a Harsh Mistress.
I was familiar with the author. My Dad had strongly encouraged me to read Heinlein juveniles. A long dry well was suddenly wet and primed. On my next trip home, I found my old dog eared copies of Have Space Suit Will Travel, Star Beast, Starman Jones and so on, then devoured them. The gateway drug had done it’s job, I moved on to the hard stuff; Atlas Shrugged.
It was all so glorious! I discovered that I was fundamentally right about the fact that I was right to love America but I could also be progressive about social issues. There was all sorts of reasons to want a less intrusive government but also to want to leave everyone else to do his/her/it’s thing in private. I could just pick and choose what I wanted. I could love guns and pick up girls at parties.
Legalizing drugs sounded good too. My only drugs have ever been alcohol and Cohibas but to each his own. Also, we had clearly lost the War on Drugs, it was time to admit it. And in truth this is still the one part of Libertarianism I buy into.
Free Market economics had to be the right way because Ronald Reagan had adopted them and the country was roaring along economically in a way that it certainly didn’t when Carter was in office. So that proved Milton Freeman was right, QED. Yes, there were a few things… okay, a lot of things in Free to Choose that were heavy on theory and light on facts to back them up. You were taking a lot on faith coupled with optimism but then again the religion of Marx was clearly a failure in every country that had tried it except for Sweden.
Something else that attracted me was the Libertarian views on sex.
“Love is blind, they say; sex is impervious to reason and mocks the power of all philosophers. But, in fact, a person’s sexual choice is the result and sum of their fundamental convictions. Tell me what a person finds sexually attractive and I will tell you their entire philosophy of life. Show me the person they sleep with and I will tell you their valuation of themselves. No matter what corruption they’re taught about the virtue of selflessness, sex is the most profoundly selfish of all acts, an act which they cannot perform for any motive but their own enjoyment – just try to think of performing it in a spirit of selfless charity! – an act which is not possible in self-abasement, only in self-exultation, only on the confidence of being desired and being worthy of desire. It is an act that forces them to stand naked in spirit, as well as in body, and accept their real ego as their standard of value. They will always be attracted to the person who reflects their deepest vision of themselves, the person whose surrender permits them to experience – or to fake – a sense of self-esteem .. Love is our response to our highest values – and can be nothing else.” Ayn Rand
It’s reasonable to say that Rand is spectacularly wrong in every conceivable way here. I am betting that this was written when she was (with her cuck’s permission) banging Nathanial Branden and had convinced herself that this was reason he found her desirable rather than a simple and grubby Oedipus trigger. Libertarian ideas about sex are very much interlaced with their ideas of female equality. The drawback here is a simple one. Their ideas about sex only work if straight women in their twenties behave like gay men in their forties.
But I liked the idea of consequence free sex, just like James Bond and Captain Kirk always managed to have, so I went with it. I was a freshmen so it was theory rather than practice back then but still it was the principle of the thing, right?
The only thing I was never on board with was the militant atheism.
At the time it didn’t bother me because of two things. One; I was certain in my heart that there was a God who lived and loved me. And two; I didn’t think about it all that much. I figured that the atheism was just one more thing that I could take or leave in the all you can eat buffet of Libertarian philosophy.
I was completely wrong. Atheism is the bedrock of Libertarianism.
The iron clad belief that there is only the self and that there is no one to stand in judgement over your life but the self that you created. This is the foundation for that entire school of thought. Atheism is not an optional extra if you are a true capital “L” Libertarian, it’s required.
Thus we hit the fundamental flaw; if there is only the self…then why have children?
The future belongs to those who show up and Libertarians breed like progressives. One child per couple leads to extinction in four generations.
And then there is the Libertarian mindset.
Okay it was obvious even when I was a college dipshit that hardcore Libertarianism was never going to get anywhere because the Libertarians themselves were far too fractious for that. They are fundamentally incapable of organizing themselves in any number larger than five.
Also their notions about the efficacy of a citizens militia versus a standing military were more romantic than practical. Even before I joined the Marines I wasn’t buying into them. For their ideas to work you have to have a lot of people that are willing to die for Libertarian ideals and those famously are not Libertarians.
Still I chugged along for decades not really questioning my beliefs. And still saying I was one of the faithful. I suppose I was over invested in a bad idea.
So what happened you ask?
I woke up.
It took me long enough.
The thing is I believe in results. We’ve had free trade and open borders (effectively) since the mid 1990s and for twenty years we’ve been pouring wealth out this country like piss out of horse. Free trade is clearly and obviously a failure. If you still believe in it then you aren’t facing cold hard reality. You are living Paul Ryan’s bubble and probably collecting a US government paycheck. Our standard of living has gone down since it was adopted, (big exception; if you already rich. Free trade works great for you.).
Open Borders only work if you are completely separated from the the real world. Paul Ryan will continue to believe in them because his world view crashes and burns if he doesn’t. He and people like him immediately begin shaking their head, no, no, no, no, no, the moment you try and point out to them that even if Mexicans wanted to assimilate they can’t due to the vast ocean of bodies that has washed up on our shores. I mean I’ve literally seen the man start shaking his head in rejection if even the concept is raised.
And that was the final straw for me. Libertarians are as reality denying as any hardcore Marxist.
The final straw was the 2016 election. I had been slipping out of their grasp for a while But watching how they recoiled from Donald Trump was my Zardoz moment.
The way their jowels wobbled in righteous indignation turned me against them for good.
Nationalism is now in diapers but we captured the party’s nomination for president, the first time out. It took Libertarian’s forty years just to capture the Speaker of the House’s chair and by capture I mean Ryan was forced to accept it.
The hippy right is now in it’s twilight. Generation X believed in the Libertarian cause but the Zoomers simply can’t. They are from age six, soaked in the insane propaganda of the left. Those that finally wake up and yell, “I’ve been lied to all my life,” are not looking for a new lie to believe in. They are looking for the truth no matter how unpleasant it is.
And they will find it in Nationalism.
*And yes, those of you who got a copy when it was still on Amazon it used to be called Dark Winter. Damned if I’m changing the title a third time.
12 thoughts on “Leaving Libertarian”
Amen brother. I wish there was a person I could apologize to for the flaming a-hole I was in the 90s about free trade. And I wasn’t just an outspoken proponent of free trade…I was singing Ricardo’s praises to fellow college students WHILE textile mills were closing across North Carolina, WHILE I was living in North Carolina. All so we could pay $2 less for tshirts at Walmart. I didn’t really consider the lost jobs until Vox covered the free movement of people requirement of free trade. Trump has done more than anyone to help those people who had jobs making socks so the least I can do to make amends was donate heavily to his reelection campaign and wear his tshirt (Made in USA!) every time I left the house in 2020.
You’re dead right about atheism permeating libertarianist circles. They look at you like YOU’RE the loony if you bring up Jesus.
I do think they have a point (and Eisenhower on their side, a bit) when they advocate for a citizen’s militia versus a standing military. The defense industry is part of the deep state…at least the Swiss model hasn’t bankrupted their govt.
Sorry for the wall of text, but this post spoke to me. I want to stand up and say “My name is Tuscaloosa, and I didn’t give a crap about millions of fellow Americans losing their jobs, but it’s been 7 years since my last drink of alcohol while holding an Ayn Rand novel.” Thanks for this blog, Dark Herald.
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I’m guilty of being a free trade believer as well. I remember laughing at Ross Perot in the early 90’s. Today, I realize that Perot was completely correct.
Recently a blogger wrote an article about how the GOP lost the House, Senate and presidency in the 2020 election. I was surprised that the blogger wrote that the GOP was still running on the exhausted ideas of Reagan. The problem was the heart of Reaganism was libertarian. I never thought about it that way, but I think that’s correct.
Reagan believed in private enterprise, less government, free trade, defeat the USSR and low taxes. The USSR is long gone, free trade resulted in tens of millions of manufacturing jobs being moving out of the US and the totally free market has resulted in the Big Tech monopolies, which we’re now learning is the exact opposite of freedom for all. Big Tech will enforce freedom for leftists, destruction for conservatives.
Some conservatives still believe in totally free enterprise and won’t touch Big Tech, even though supporting Big Tech monopolies means destruction of conservatives. Conservatism and belief in free enterprise has turned conservatism into suicide cult.
Libertarian/conservatives don’t believe in shaping young minds, everyone must use logic to find their own way. Sounds great, until you realize that SJWs certainly believe in shaping minds and they’ve spent the last few decades teaching K-12 and college students that leftism and equality is good, conservatism and nationalism is bad. Again, the mixture of conservative and libertarian beliefs has result in political and cultural suicide for conservatives..
There are a lot of paradoxes when you mix libertarian and conservative ideas. There aren’t any paradoxes for the modern leftist/communists. State control gives money and freedom to leftists, nothing for conservatives.
Conservatives keep saying SJWs are hypocrites about BLM vs DC demonstrations. SJWs aren’t hypocrites. Their belief system means leftists can never do anything wrong. Everything conservatives do is inherently wrong and must be suppressed.
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Yeah, it’s like when conservatives shout “Democrats are the real racists!” First of all, Democrats, leftists and SJWs don’t really care. Even if true, most blacks are still dumb enough to vote Democratic. I have a grudging admiration for the new black media who reject integration and hold the Democrats in more scorn than they do Republicans (whom they consider open white supremacists). Republicans meanwhile are obsessed with showing that they are absolutely without racism, even if it means letting illegal immigrants in to lower wages here and outsourcing jobs overseas. Sometimes these fuckers just make me want to vote all Democratic to bring the system crashing down sooner! What a mess!
Freedom is the only ideology that finds defending itself abhorrent. You cannot man the walls of freedom to defend it, since freedom doesn’t believe in walls.
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‘that even if Mexicans wanted to assimilate they can’t due to the vast ocean of bodies that has washed up on our shores.’
Sorry, apologies for being ignorant, I’m suffering Corona Confusion, but what does this mean. What’s it about and how does it show that mexicans can’t assimilate?
In order to assimilate into a new culture you have to abanddon your old one.
And you simply cannot abandon your old culture if you are completely surrounded by it.
This isn’t like the Irish or Italians. The numbers are too huge. And it’s only a few hours drive to get back to the “old country,” as opposed to a weeks long sea voyage.
Read; War and Migration by Martin Van Creveld.
Guilty as charged. Just like the idea that the republicans want to win.
This resonates with my experience to an uncomfortable degree but the logic about Christ and Nationalism is unassailable.
Vox Day lead me here. I went through an Ayn Rand phase long ago but never joined the cult.She was right about many things. Her book The New Left – The Ant–industrial Revolution. was ahead of its time. When I read the latest fake news on the global warming hoax or the glorious green energy future I come back to a saying of hers. “You can ignore reality but can’t ignore the consequences of ignoring reality.” Black outs and rising electrical prices are hard to ignore.
Free trade is easy to analyze. There are winners and losers inside the US. Even if there is a net gain overall that does not justify it. Is it not win win. It is win lose. It is transfer of wealth from unprotected US workers to the 1% and cheaper goods which means a net benefit for the protected classes. Peggy Noonan wrote that people unprotected from globalism voted for Trump. People who have jobs protected by govt (civil servants, govt job credentials) like immigration.
BTW I had the Friday cover on my cube wall long ago. HR made me take it down.
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Pretty much right on, but you may be confusing the militant atheism of Objectivism with Libertarianism. Objectivism definitely rejects God, and Rand had nothing but contempt for religion or belief in God of any sort. Libertarians believe in religious freedom and at least a few of them are religious: Tom Woods (Catholic), Bob Murphy, Rand and Ron Paul (I believe). Was Paul Ryan an atheist? If so, how did he get elected? You’ve probably met more Big L Libertarians than I have, so you tell me, are they really that militant? The Founders were small l libertarians and most were at least theists, if not Christians. Thanks for posting!