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Marxism of the Right (A paleoconservative pot pontificates on libertarian kettles)
The American Conservative ^ | March 14, 2005 | Robert Locke

Posted on 03/07/2005 1:08:36 PM PST by quidnunc

Free spirits, the ambitious, ex-socialists, drug users, and sexual eccentrics often find an attractive political philosophy in libertarianism, the idea that individual freedom should be the sole rule of ethics and government. Libertarianism offers its believers a clear conscience to do things society presently restrains, like make more money, have more sex, or take more drugs. It promises a consistent formula for ethics, a rigorous framework for policy analysis, a foundation in American history, and the application of capitalist efficiencies to the whole of society. But while it contains substantial grains of truth, as a whole it is a seductive mistake.

There are many varieties of libertarianism, from natural-law libertarianism (the least crazy) to anarcho-capitalism (the most), and some varieties avoid some of the criticisms below. But many are still subject to most of them, and some of the more successful varieties — I recently heard a respected pundit insist that classical liberalism is libertarianism — enter a gray area where it is not really clear that they are libertarians at all. But because 95 percent of the libertarianism one encounters at cocktail parties, on editorial pages, and on Capitol Hill is a kind of commonplace “street” libertarianism, I decline to allow libertarians the sophistical trick of using a vulgar libertarianism to agitate for what they want by defending a refined version of their doctrine when challenged philosophically. We’ve seen Marxists pull that before.

This is no surprise, as libertarianism is basically the Marxism of the Right. If Marxism is the delusion that one can run society purely on altruism and collectivism, then libertarianism is the mirror-image delusion that one can run it purely on selfishness and individualism. Society in fact requires both individualism and collectivism, both selfishness and altruism, to function. Like Marxism, libertarianism offers the fraudulent intellectual security of a complete a priori account of the political good without the effort of empirical investigation. Like Marxism, it aspires, overtly or covertly, to reduce social life to economics. And like Marxism, it has its historical myths and a genius for making its followers feel like an elect unbound by the moral rules of their society.

-snip-


TOPICS: Editorial; Extended News; Philosophy
KEYWORDS: libertarians
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To: libertarianben; Always Right
Libertarians don't believe in total individualism. That's what an anarchist believes in.

Wrong! Libertarians do believe in total individualism. You ought to read the LP Statement of Principles and platform. As far as anarchists go, the vast majority of the vocal anarchists are collectivists, and thereby not libertarian. There are however individualist anarchists, of which many can be found in both the libertarian movement as well as the Libertarian Party.

51 posted on 03/09/2005 3:46:29 PM PST by jackbob
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To: libertarianben; secretagent
I'd like to see Libertarians teach "Conservative" Republicans the constitution and what small government is.

Libertarians are not particularly constitutionalists, and for the most part have little to say about it. The constitution is just not an issue of study or importance to them. Go to any of the major libertarian literature and book dealers. What little you will find on the constitution is by far out weighed by that which runs counter of the constitution. At this time in our history, I don't think Libertarians have anything to teach "Conservative" Republicans.

I would say however, at this time, that we Libertarians have a lot to teach liberal democrats (but the Constitution is not one of the items, for them either).

52 posted on 03/09/2005 3:56:24 PM PST by jackbob
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To: traviskicks; Nataku X
If everyone was a good person and everyone was trusting then socialism/communism looks fairly attractive.

Maybe, if you really hate people. But if you find people generally attractive, and find their their individuality enjoyable, then socialism/communism is down right ugly under its best of all possible circumstances.

53 posted on 03/09/2005 4:02:29 PM PST by jackbob
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To: traviskicks
If everyone was a policeman, there would not be a need for what we think of as an official police force, but the line between saying there is NO police force and that there is a TOTAL police force is almost non existent.

Excellent, excellent analogy. I agree with your point and your entire post which is one of the best I've read on FR. It's rare to find someone who can write persuasively.

I think the historical Anarchists were a bit different in ideology then what we consider Capitalist Anarchists or extreme Libertarians. Or?

I don't know much about Anarchism as a philosophy, but from bits and pieces picked up on college campuses, there are different flavors of anarchists just like there are many flavors of libertarians. In today's world, most anarchists do not care about freeing economical control; in fact, they closely resemble socialists in this manner. What they are anarchic about is the military and police forces. Of course, the United States and George W Bush is seen as a world police, so we're their biggest target.

After the Russian revolution I believe the Communists were initially allied with the Anarchists, but soon brutally purged them. A similar event occurred in the Spanish civil war.

Perhaps because they turned on each other once their common goal was achieved?

Thanks for a great post, and have a wonderful evening.
54 posted on 03/09/2005 4:30:01 PM PST by Nataku X (Food for Thought: http://web2.airmail.net/scsr/)
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To: jackbob

Yup. Diversity, safety, and freedom. Pick two.


55 posted on 03/09/2005 4:31:01 PM PST by Nataku X (Food for Thought: http://web2.airmail.net/scsr/)
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To: jackbob

Yeah ok.


56 posted on 03/09/2005 5:04:41 PM PST by libertarianben (Looking for sanity and his hard to find cousin common sense)
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To: jackbob

The founding fathers were "classic liberals" or libertarians. Where do you get this stuff at?


57 posted on 03/09/2005 5:06:49 PM PST by libertarianben (Looking for sanity and his hard to find cousin common sense)
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To: traviskicks; Nataku X
In extreme (and not the kind that a vast majority of Libertarians subscribe to) Libertarianism, more accurately described, as you put it, as Anarchist Capitalism...

This has been a much debated item in the libertarian movement, as well as in the LP itself. True, when the debates ground to a halt between 1983-87, the anarchists had the upper hand in making your claim, declaring total victory. But that was not because they were right. The minarchists just failed to effectively radicalize their presentation. Had they done so, I say the minarchists would have won the debate hands down. In other words, the anarchists won only by default, and not because their position was in fact better supported.

The differences are most glaring between these two ideologies in the beginning, Communists have to fight for more state control and anarchy capitalists have to fight for less state control. So, it is a bit curious to me that the Communists and Anarchists have allied together as much as they have.

You seem seem to be confusing "anarchy capitalists" with "anarchists." The former is only one type of the latter. Among anarchists, the range of opposing philosophies is as great as the range exists any where in political philosophy. The anarchists that are usually found in alliance with communists are collectivist anarchists (ie Anarcho Syndicalists), and very rarely anarcho capitalists.

After the Russian revolution I believe the Communists were initially allied with the Anarchists...

Actually the both were circumstantially allies long before that, going back before even Marx. Even Marxism qualifies as a type of anarchism, and thereby can be propagated as a the true anarchist philosophy over all others, depending of course on the propagandist's point of view. One might also keep in mind that there were two Marxes, an early and later one. Early in his life he called for weakening the state, later in life he favored its strengthening, as the best means to move forward. Such positions have nothing to do with the political philosophy, they fall under the category of political strategy.

The author of the original piece is full of it because the actual results and pathways of the two different ideologies are so different that it is absurd to even compare them.

Not so, with regard to "pathways" only. Pathways are a question of strategy, and not ideology. Libertarians strategies are a long way from being settled, and in actuality can never be completely settled. Though I would propose that where the strategy runs counter to the philosophy, then it should be a settled matter. For example, the number one strategy in use with in the LP today is to hide the LP principles so as to better reach out to conservatives. I say this amounts to fraud, and should have been rejected back in the early 80s as as running counter to Libertarian philosophy. But it was put forward and made popular, with out debate. Liberarians had grown tired of the infightening that had brought the party uncontroled growth, and feared such growth might lead it to far down the left wing path. So the leadership called for an end to debate, popularized it with speakers and articles, and thereby ended up going down a right wing path, ultimately to the harm of both the conservative as well as libertarian movements.

58 posted on 03/09/2005 5:19:06 PM PST by jackbob
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To: Nataku X
Yup. Diversity, safety, and freedom. Pick two.

Absolutely elegantly put.

59 posted on 03/09/2005 5:36:53 PM PST by jackbob
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To: libertarianben
The founding fathers were "classic liberals" or libertarians. Where do you get this stuff at?

Founding fathers were "liberals," and not libertarians. What stuff?

60 posted on 03/09/2005 5:38:43 PM PST by jackbob
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To: orangelobster
Robert Locke is the Bea Arthur of the Right.

Except that Robert Locke is hopefully considerably better looking than ol' Maude.

61 posted on 03/09/2005 5:40:35 PM PST by Clemenza (Alcohol Tobacco & Firearms: The Other Holy Trinity)
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To: libertarianben
"Libertarians have the vision of every sovereign individual living their own life as they please, as long as they let others live their lives as they please."

"This libertarian vision or principle has an enabling rule: don't assault people physically or steal their property."

And this is wrong?

Not to me.

62 posted on 03/09/2005 5:41:48 PM PST by secretagent
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To: Nataku X

thanks! You made my evening.


63 posted on 03/09/2005 6:00:36 PM PST by traviskicks (http://www.neoperspectives.com/foundingoftheunitedstates.htm)
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To: jackbob
I would say however, at this time, that we Libertarians have a lot to teach liberal democrats (but the Constitution is not one of the items, for them either).

I like to keep reminding them of the threat of violence that backs up all legislation. The pacifists I know hate that.

64 posted on 03/09/2005 6:06:26 PM PST by secretagent
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To: Jibaholic
Why don't we wait until liberalism has been officially swept into the dustbins of history

If your definition of liberalism includes those who support and promote:
-- a large (and continually growing) central government.
-- more socialistic programs.
-- little or no respect for the Constitution.

Better save room in your garbage can for the current crop of republicans in DC.

65 posted on 03/09/2005 6:15:47 PM PST by NMC EXP (Choose one: [a] party [b] principle.)
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To: jackbob

ok. well I think i have the various anarchists types now under my belt. I think many of them, I'm thinking of the anti-authority anti-globalist type protestors today, are confused themselves as to exactly what they are for or against and why.

"Early in his life he called for weakening the state, later in life he favored its strengthening, as the best means to move forward."

Have never heard this before. Can you elaborate?

"For example, the number one strategy in use with in the LP today is to hide the LP principles so as to better reach out to conservatives."

IHMO they are doing almost the opposite. (although I guess it depends on perspective) Polling MUST show that there is a huge demand for much more limited government then the Bloated Republicans are for, but with a strong military and foreign policy. Yet their Presidential Candidate was against the Iraq war and danced around conspiratorial 9/11 theories and blamed American for meddling in the Middle East etc.. Sounded almost like Michael Moore... And why do they keep bringing up this kookiness about a silver/gold standard? That has no place in politics and is junk economics anyway - so in that case I can at least commend them for sticking to principle, as some really seem to believe a silver/gold standard etc... is that right thing.

If they had a charismatic standard bearer, someone to really unite the party, and a sensible, comprehensive blueprint of what they believe and how they can achieve it, I think over time (20 years) they could actually become the majority party in America (if the Republicans don't steal their popular ideas first). I think the admittedly diverse factions in the lib party should 'settle' around a few core principles which they could build a foundation on and ignore some of the other minor more controversial issues.


66 posted on 03/09/2005 7:02:18 PM PST by traviskicks (http://www.neoperspectives.com/foundingoftheunitedstates.htm)
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To: quidnunc
It was tough to get through even the paragraphs you posted, quidnunc. This guy Locke has things so twisted I'd wager The American Conservative will be bombarded with irate letters.

Fortunately, TAC presents a variety of views, and in the same issue can be found one of the best defenses of individualism and freedom and libertarianism I've had the pleasure of reading in that magazine (online this time, since I unfortunately let my charter subscription lapse).

Dan McCarthy's In Defense of Freedom makes an excellent counterpoint to Locke's confused and disjointed screed.

67 posted on 03/09/2005 8:23:56 PM PST by logician2u
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To: traviskicks
Its easy for me to agree with you that many of the anarchists types are confused as to what they are for and against. However I do not agree that this is especially true among the "anti-authority anti-globalist type protesters today." One must keep in mind that these protesters do not have common set of beliefs. They are made up from a wide range of beliefs and organizations. Hell, even Pat Buchanan claimed to have put on a (I think either a penguin or duck, I don't remember) costume and joined in with anarchists and leftists at an anti-nafta protest back when he was running for president. At any rate, maintaining unity among the various anarchists as well as leftists, often results in an appearance that they do not know what they want, as there alway is an incentive to avoid trying to settle differences during such protests. The result of this is each protestor attempts to present their own view as the majority view, with out mention or regard for the view that a previous protestor presented, leaving the whole chaotic mess looking like they are all confused as to what they want.

In as far a the two Marxes, I see no reason to strain my memory on it, as it was not actually necessary to the point that making the government weaker or stronger, in advancing a political philosophy is a matter of strategy and not philosophy.

In as far as Libertarian principles go, opposition to the Iraq war, claims of a 9/11 conspiracy, want for a return to a silver/gold standard, are positions that can be independly argued without mention of principle. There are far more conservatives holding these views than libertarians. The old conservative movement may not be as vocal as it once was, but they are still around, and by far out number libertarians. Free Republic has banned more of them than it has libertarians. At any rate, a close look at the so called libertarian arguments relating to any of these issues will show most all of the arguments being made are with explanations that do not include libertarian principles.

I more than agree that the LP needs a "sensible, comprehensive blueprint of what they believe and how they can achieve it." But not just one. The LP needs several competing blueprints. I do not agree however that the "diverse factions in the" LP "should 'settle' around a few core principles which they could build a foundation on and ignore some of the other minor more controversial issues." First off the LP already has a core principle on which a foundation has already been built. Controversial issues are the fuel that generates the internal competition necessary for a movement to dynamically grow.

In as far as a "charismatic standard bearer" goes, the LP should never put its trust in people. As a self described party of principle, ideas and information is where the party should put its trust. Personality politics is always dangerous to both peace and liberty.

Finally, the notion of becoming a majority party in America is equally dangerous to both the Libertarian Party, as well as the nation as a whole. For the LP, at this time in its current stage of development, such thoughts are completely out of touch with political reality. Attempts to advance such notions will result in the LP increasingly compromising its principles as it enlarges itself with losers and complainers from the other parties. Such people bring with them a want for revenge against their prior party affiliations, while having little or no concern for the principles on which the party of principles was built. Besides, the LP has always been about education and bringing about a libertarian society. For the Libertarian, it does not matter if its done by Republicans or Democrats. Its Libertarianism we want. Not a big powerful party for the sake of a party. If the LP in the future becomes the vehicle of change at the election polls, fine. But this should never be our primary goal.

Additionally, thoughts of becoming a major party has started to materialize the LP as a spoiler party. Worse, it has manipulated us on to the line, as a Democratic Party cavalry unit specializing in rear area operations behind the the Republican Party defense lines. If this continues, the Democratic Party is going to increasingly win elections, and when they don't the winning republicans will be more and more like them. That will make the LP a danger to the entire nation, with out it ever reaching 15% popularity.

68 posted on 03/10/2005 3:14:42 AM PST by jackbob
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To: logician2u
I agree, "Dan McCarthy's In Defense of Freedom makes an excellent counterpoint to Locke's confused and disjointed screed." I found it a pleasure to read, and for the most part quite accurate. I did however find a few areas of minor disagreement, that could lead to significant unintended implications, when attempting to assess libertarian strategy.

His description of the differences between "moderate" and "radical" libertarians, actually describes the differences between "utilitarian" and "natural-rights" libertarians. Both of which have their own moderate and radical camps. Though utilitarian radicals are harder to identify. Ludwig von Misses, for one, can be described as a utilitarian radical, as he has said that if socialism could be legitimately argued to be able to do what it proposes to do, then he would be a socialist. This is a kind of position that could be held by both moderate and radical utilitarians in the libertarian movement. On the other hand, Natural-rights libertarians, including moderate ones, could never except such notion.

Another small area of disagreement I have with him is his giving credit to libertarians for that which conservatives have long been doing. There is much I say libertarians should get credit for, but only where that credit is due. His ignoring the accomplishments of the conservatives, apparently seeing the neocons as being the only conservatives, seems to prevent him from seeing the other conservatives and their many accomplishments.

Finally, it should be noted that he fails to define what a libertarian is. Not doing so makes it easy to toss around terms like moderate and radical, as well as to credit as libertarians those who are not libertarian.

Over all I must say that I was quite surprised seeing such a high quality article on libertarianism published by conservative magazine. Unlike the junk presented by Robert Locke, this article was extremely accurate and well worth the read.

69 posted on 03/10/2005 3:27:29 AM PST by jackbob
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To: secretagent
I like to keep reminding them of the threat of violence that backs up all legislation. The pacifists I know hate that.

You give a perfect illustration of out lefting the left. I must add, this works not just only with pacifists, but also most democrats and damn near all leftists. They thrive on posturing themselves as being liberal and for peaceful cooperative relations in human affairs. Reminding them that the violence being perpetrated on their neighbors at home only conditions the people to behave violently abroad has quite an effect. Any time a non-republican, nonconservative hits them with such ideas in an honest sincere manner, it really pulls the rug out from under them.

The same can be done more directly in economics, by pointing to the libertarian advocacy of "freeing up the economy" as opposed to the "trickle" of "freeing down" the economy as the Reaganomics conservatives offer. A concrete examples of out lefting the left can quite easily be made by using the fact that libertarians are opposed to all zoning and occupational licensing laws. Of course their are many more examples that can be given.

70 posted on 03/10/2005 3:59:16 AM PST by jackbob
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To: jackbob

That's what I meant.


71 posted on 03/10/2005 1:47:15 PM PST by libertarianben (Looking for sanity and his hard to find cousin common sense)
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To: logician2u

Great article.

Can I steal it and post it?


72 posted on 03/10/2005 2:09:17 PM PST by libertarianben (Looking for sanity and his hard to find cousin common sense)
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To: libertarianben
No one can prove a negative. If you have proof that will stand up to scrutiny that the founding father's were libertarians, I'll change my position. It will not be the first time, and won't be the last time, that I have been wrong. I just have not seen any proof of it as yet. If you got it, bring it on.
73 posted on 03/10/2005 2:18:11 PM PST by jackbob
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To: jackbob
Then why is it every libertarian talks about the constitution? The LP presidential candidate was a constitutional scholar.
74 posted on 03/10/2005 2:28:01 PM PST by libertarianben (Looking for sanity and his hard to find cousin common sense)
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To: libertarianben
Now you are changing the subject. You of course have no way to even come close to knowing what every libertarian talks about. I do not doubt you that the ones you have heard all talked about the constitution. Where as very few of the ones I've heard, ever talked about the constitution. As far as the LP presidential candidate being a constitutional scholar goes, the one before him was an author. So what?

Neither of them are the standard definers for the LP. This is because the LP is a Party of Principle, that lays its foundation in an idea and not human being. Read your Statement of Principles for defining what a Libertarian is.

75 posted on 03/10/2005 2:49:24 PM PST by jackbob
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To: jackbob

My brain is starting to hurt.


76 posted on 03/10/2005 2:53:47 PM PST by libertarianben (Looking for sanity and his hard to find cousin common sense)
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To: free_european

Yes, Marx boasted that he took the absolute idealism of
Hegel's "world spirit" and "set it right side up", that
is,into the dialectic of history based on materialism.
This dialectic was, as you indicate, designated to be an
inexorable "law of history". The supreme irony is that
despite the fallacy of this whole system -- Marx did have
certain insights, one of which was that capitalism was a
"progressive" force historically, though its time was
passed.


77 posted on 03/10/2005 3:05:44 PM PST by T.L.Sink (stopew)
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To: quidnunc

Libertarians would self destruct on their own if they got their way. The whole ideology is a joke.


78 posted on 03/10/2005 3:09:54 PM PST by John Lenin (Common sense is very uncommon nowadays)
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To: quidnunc

The most fundamental problem with libertarianism is very simple: freedom, though a good thing, is simply not the only good thing in life.

No, but it's the one hardest to hold onto.
It's the one without which the others are valueless.
It's the one Governments, ideologies and religions most endanger.

No, I'm not a libertarian of any stripe.
I'm a Goldwater Republican and a pragmatist, and I know that you can't turn your back on any large organization, no matter what it claims, or even believes, it's intentions are.

SO9


79 posted on 03/10/2005 6:33:01 PM PST by Servant of the 9 (Trust Me)
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To: Reactionary
Reactionary wrote:

The fact that Libertarians have yet to address the question of ordered liberty or the importance of ends shows, I think, how unserious it is as a political "philosophy."

_____________________________________


Republican Liberty Caucus Position Statement
Address:http://www.rlc.org/Library/OrgDocs/PositionStatement.htm


Please show us exactly where there is a failure to address "the question of ordered liberty" in the "political philosophy" of the RLC position.


I doubt you can.
80 posted on 03/10/2005 7:01:07 PM PST by P_A_I
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To: secretagent

secretagent wrote:

Libertarians have the vision of every sovereign individual living their own life as they please, as long as they let others live their lives as they please.
This libertarian vision or principle has an enabling rule: don't assault people physically or steal their property.

This stands independent of, and expands the zone of freedom beyond, the federal constitution.







Independant & beyond? - Not at all. Rational libertarians are honor bound to our Constitutions principles, as we all are..

In fact the framers had much that same vision of every individual living their own life as they please, as long as they let others live their lives as they please.
-- The concept of rights to life, liberty & property for all is very libertarian.


81 posted on 03/10/2005 7:14:55 PM PST by P_A_I
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To: jackbob
"We libertarians"?

"-- are not particularly constitutionalists, --" ?

You don't write like any libertarian I know.

82 posted on 03/10/2005 7:21:25 PM PST by P_A_I
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To: traviskicks; redgolum
Judeo-Christian principles governed our young nation. A more Libertarian government will work under those circumstances. One only needs to read the personal ideals of the founders to realize this truth. So many of the acceptable perversions of today were taboo in our early history.

People in our early history were fiscal and social conservatives. The government didn't need to regulate the craziness that is called free choice today.
83 posted on 03/10/2005 7:31:38 PM PST by bondserv (Sincerity with God is the most powerful instigator for change! [Check out my profile page])
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To: P_A_I
Rational libertarians are honor bound to our Constitutions principles, as we all are..

Since the libertarian philosophy does not address particular political doctrines, limiting itself instead to matters relating to individual free will, any claim that an individual is honor bound to any historic doctrine or to any principles derived there from, is an assertion of an authoritarian position that runs counter to the philosophy of free will. No rational libertarian can ever accept such a notion.

Being a Libertarian who still feels bound, with out any show or claim to honor, by my three prior oaths to the Constitution of the United States of America, does not cause me to expect from others, who may or may not also have taken the same oath, the same commitment that I have.

I wonder, from what strange philosopher, you derive your authoritarian views, on which you claim to be a libertarian.

84 posted on 03/10/2005 10:20:52 PM PST by jackbob
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To: quidnunc

This article presents one of the most eloquent and erudite straw man arguments I have seen in quite a while.

Perhaps someday it might even apply to someone who actually exists.

In the meantime, it's more fuel for the fires of extremism that helped convert me, in the case of Free Republic, from a lurker into a contributing member, then back into a non-contributing occasional lurker that rarely bothers to lurk anymore.

For those who consider such a thing a victory, I point to what the Democrats are doing to themselves, and Republicans are now sadly beginning to do in turn.

If you choose to eat your own, you will eventually run out of things to eat.

Even a “Liberdopian” makes a better ally than an enemy, although that notion seems lost on some who should know better, but cannot be bothered to see past their own obnoxious and simple-minded insularity.

Here I see the spectacle of those who prize liberty being ridiculed for doing so by those who should respect themselves enough to realize their own hypocrisy.

I would love to know what our esteemed founding fathers would have to say about such a shameful display.

Actually, they wrote at great length about it, but so many of their ersatz worshipers don't seem to consider the actual opinions of the founding fathers to be relevant anymore.

They just mouth the words while following the herds.

Radicalism, fundamentalism and intolerance of dissent all lead to the same place, regardless of where you start out from, whether Marxist, Libertarian or Conservative.

Insulting and alienating those who differ on some points but agree on others is a recipe for isolation and ultimate oblivion, and I will have no part of it.

Mark my words well, because you are unlikely to read many more of them here.


85 posted on 03/10/2005 10:32:36 PM PST by Imal (Freedom comes from casting off constraints.)
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To: Imal
Insulting and alienating those who differ on some points but agree on others is a recipe for isolation and ultimate oblivion, and I will have no part of it.

Mark my words well, because you are unlikely to read many more of them here.

The first half of your reply you criticized the article. The second half you spent insulting anyone who disagrees with you. Then you post the above two paragraphs, I guess to insulate your self.

I think some self examination is in order here.

86 posted on 03/11/2005 12:00:05 AM PST by jackbob
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To: jackbob
Rational libertarians are honor bound to support our Constitutions principles, as we all are..

In fact the framers had much that same vision of every individual living their own life as they please, as long as they let others live their lives as they please.
-- The concept of rights to life, liberty & property for all is very libertarian.

____________________________________

jackbob, you wrote:
"We libertarians"?
"-- are not particularly constitutionalists, --" ?

You don't write like any libertarian I know.
82 P_A_I

Since the libertarian philosophy does not address particular political doctrines, limiting itself instead to matters relating to individual free will,

That's a specious claim, one you just made up. All the American libertarian philosophy I've ever read definitely embraces the principles of the US Constitutional system. Feel free to link me to any that does not.

any claim that an individual is honor bound to any historic doctrine or to any principles derived there from, is an assertion of an authoritarian position that runs counter to the philosophy of free will.

As I said, your imagination has made that a 'libertarian' position. -- And, your 'authoritarian/free will' bit is sheer gibberish. -- Sure, - everyone has free will, - but all residents of the USA are bound to obey the Law of the Land, our US Constitution. -- See Article VI.
-- No rational libertarian can ever deny that fact.

Being a Libertarian who still feels bound, with out any show or claim to honor, by my three prior oaths to the Constitution of the United States of America, does not cause me to expect from others, who may or may not also have taken the same oath, the same commitment that I have.

You do not expect your peers living in this country to support the US Constitution? Why do you claim that as libertarian position? Isn't everyone subject to the rule of law?

BTW, -- the oath I took included defending the Constitution, and I honor that. You don't? - Bold statement.

I wonder, from what strange philosopher, you derive your authoritarian views, on which you claim to be a libertarian.

I'm defending the point that our rule of Constitutional law in America is not 'authoritarian'.
-- I think you're the first person I've ever seen on FR that has made the claim that such a defense IS authoritarian. -- And you call me strange? How odd.

87 posted on 03/11/2005 5:12:36 AM PST by P_A_I
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To: P_A_I
Its quite possible that you didn't bother to read the dialog on the thread first so as to be able to recognize context. The topic discussed was the Libertarian Party and what its members can and should be doing. Starting with reply #26 and moving through replies 28, 35, and on to #39, a clear continuity was maintained. Then in reply #39 "libertarianben" wrote "I'd like to see Libertarians teach "Conservative" Republicans the constitution and what small government is."

Replying back in #40, "secretagent" did not agree stating that "The real conservatives can teach us about the Constitution and how government could have stayed small." He then went on to say that "Libertarians can push the proper boundaries of freedom into new areas with a new vision, independent of the Constitution." This last sentence "liberbaden" repeated word for word in #41 and asked "how so?

In reply #44, "secretagent" answered by putting the Libertarian Party main principle, proviso, and enabling rule into his own words, then explained that it "stands independent of, and expands the zone of freedom beyond, the federal constitution." At this point you came into it in reply #81 with:

Independant & beyond? - Not at all. Rational libertarians are honor bound to our Constitutions principles, as we all are..

The context of your statement "not at all," was a denial that Libertarianism, as presented by the Libertarian Party, "stands independent of, and expands the zone of freedom beyond, the federal constitution." Your commentary to support this denial, that "rational libertarians are honor bound to our Constitutions principles, as we all are.." was a clear attempt by you to limit Libertarian philosophy, as presented by the Libertarian Party, to only the "Constitutions principles." Libertarianism is much larger than that.

It was to this limitation on Libertarianism, that I then I responded that your position is an "an authoritarian position that runs counter to the philosophy of free will." In other words, Libertarians are not "honor bound" to limit their philosophy to only those principles that are already in our Constitution, as you proposed when you asked: "Independant & beyond? And then answered: Not at all.

Now I started off this reply stating its possible that you missed the context in which statements were made. But on re-reading your reply, I don't think so. It really looks like you purposefully twisted the context, so as to promote your authoritarian agenda, and once called on it, you attempt to squirm your way out. Your now twisting the "honor bound" limitations you put on political philosophy, into "all residents of the USA are bound to obey the Law of the Land," is a prime example of squirming, as nothing was said that implied they were not. Your claim that "defending the point that our rule of Constitutional law in America is not 'authoritarian'" is another example. Such was not said to be authoritarian. So on and so forth through out your entire reply, you twist and squirm around with quotes, much the same as you did with the context of the dialog.

As far as my not feeling honor about my oaths to the Constitution, which I voluntarily remain loyal to, I only have honor for that which goes beyond what I have done. Now don't twist humility into dishonor. There is a difference.

You had one item right in your entire reply. Yes, I do not expect peers living in this country to support the U.S. Constitution. I distinguish a difference between what I want and what I expect. I am not an authoritarian.

Of course I shouldn't be surprised by your attachment to authoritarianism. Looking at your reply #80, and your apparent support for an anti-Libertarian Party, authoritarian organization, says it all.

88 posted on 03/11/2005 12:07:55 PM PST by jackbob
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To: jackbob
Rational libertarians are honor bound to support our Constitutions principles, as we all are..
In fact the framers had much that same vision of every individual living their own life as they please, as long as they let others live their lives as they please.

-- The concept of rights to life, liberty & property for all is very libertarian.

____________________________________

jackbob, you wrote:

"We libertarians"?
"-- are not particularly constitutionalists, --" ?

You don't write like any libertarian I know.
82 P_A_I

Since the libertarian philosophy does not address particular political doctrines, limiting itself instead to matters relating to individual free will,

That's a specious claim, one you just made up. All the American libertarian philosophy I've ever read definitely embraces the principles of the US Constitutional system. Feel free to link me to any that does not.

any claim that an individual is honor bound to any historic doctrine or to any principles derived there from, is an assertion of an authoritarian position that runs counter to the philosophy of free will.

As I said, your imagination has made that a 'libertarian' position. -- And, your 'authoritarian/free will' bit is sheer gibberish. -- Sure, - everyone has free will, - but all residents of the USA are bound to obey the Law of the Land, our US Constitution. -- See Article VI.

-- No rational libertarian can ever deny that fact.

Being a Libertarian who still feels bound, with out any show or claim to honor, by my three prior oaths to the Constitution of the United States of America, does not cause me to expect from others, who may or may not also have taken the same oath, the same commitment that I have.

You do not expect your peers living in this country to support the US Constitution? Why do you claim that as libertarian position? Isn't everyone subject to the rule of law?

BTW, -- the oath I took included defending the Constitution, and I honor that. You don't? - Bold statement.

I wonder, from what strange philosopher, you derive your authoritarian views, on which you claim to be a libertarian. I'm defending the point that our rule of Constitutional law in America is not 'authoritarian'.

-- I think you're the first person I've ever seen on FR that has made the claim that such a defense IS authoritarian. -- And you call me strange? How odd.

Its quite possible that you didn't bother to read the dialog on the thread first so as to be able to recognize context.

Not true. My post above establishes context.

The topic discussed was the Libertarian Party and what its members can and should be doing. Starting with reply #26 and moving through replies 28, 35, and on to #39, a clear continuity was maintained. Then in reply #39 "libertarianben" wrote "I'd like to see Libertarians teach "Conservative" Republicans the constitution and what small government is." Replying back in #40, "secretagent" did not agree stating that "The real conservatives can teach us about the Constitution and how government could have stayed small." He then went on to say that "Libertarians can push the proper boundaries of freedom into new areas with a new vision, independent of the Constitution." This last sentence "liberbaden" repeated word for word in #41 and asked "how so? In reply #44, "secretagent" answered by putting the Libertarian Party main principle, proviso, and enabling rule into his own words, then explained that it "stands independent of, and expands the zone of freedom beyond, the federal constitution." At this point you came into it in reply #81 with:

Independent & beyond? - Not at all. Rational libertarians are honor bound to our Constitutions principles, as we all are..

The context of your statement "not at all," was a denial that Libertarianism, as presented by the Libertarian Party, "stands independent of, and expands the zone of freedom beyond, the federal constitution."

Wrong. I made no specification as to the party.

Your commentary to support this denial, that "rational libertarians are honor bound to our Constitutions principles, as we all are.." was a clear attempt by you to limit Libertarian philosophy, as presented by the Libertarian Party, to only the "Constitutions principles."

That's your imaginary take on what I wrote. The context is evident in my post, just above.

Libertarianism is much larger than that. It was to this limitation on Libertarianism, that I then I responded that your position is an "an authoritarian position that runs counter to the philosophy of free will." In other words, Libertarians are not "honor bound" to limit their philosophy to only those principles that are already in our Constitution, as you proposed when you asked: "Independent & beyond? And then answered: Not at all.

How daft. My position is not 'authoritarian' at all. Anyone can read my post above to verify that fact. As you well know, but ignore. Thats whats really weird about this post of yours. Do you have a point to all this? Or are you just playing wordgames?

Now I started off this reply stating its possible that you missed the context in which statements were made. But on re-reading your reply, I don't think so. It really looks like you purposefully twisted the context, so as to promote your authoritarian agenda, and once called on it, you attempt to squirm your way out.

Whatever. I see now you're intent on flamebaiting..

Your now twisting the "honor bound" limitations you put on political philosophy, into "all residents of the USA are bound to obey the Law of the Land," is a prime example of squirming, as nothing was said that implied they were not.

Context is all, my boy. My words stand as written.

Your claim that "defending the point that our rule of Constitutional law in America is not 'authoritarian'" is another example. Such was not said to be authoritarian. So on and so forth through out your entire reply, you twist and squirm around with quotes, much the same as you did with the context of the dialog.

Yep, "so on and so forth", masterfully put.

As far as my not feeling honor about my oaths to the Constitution, which I voluntarily remain loyal to, I only have honor for that which goes beyond what I have done. Now don't twist humility into dishonor. There is a difference.

How telling that you can't really reply to what I actually wrote.

You had one item right in your entire reply. Yes, I do not expect peers living in this country to support the U.S. Constitution. I distinguish a difference between what I want and what I expect. I am not an authoritarian. Of course I shouldn't be surprised by your attachment to authoritarianism. Looking at your reply #80, and your apparent support for an anti-Libertarian Party, authoritarian organization, says it all.

Now you want to 'tar baby' my post at #80? And you call the RLC an "anti-Libertarian Party, authoritarian organization?"

Are you aware that Jim Rob invited the RLC here to FR, and established a separate forum for them?

89 posted on 03/11/2005 1:14:41 PM PST by P_A_I
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To: P_A_I
Rational libertarians are honor bound to our Constitutions principles, as we all are..

I don't know what you mean by the Constitution's principles. Perhaps you could expand on that.

I do know that many famous libertarians have supported anarchy, or no government at all. No government, no Federal constitution.

90 posted on 03/11/2005 4:37:38 PM PST by secretagent
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To: secretagent

secretagent wrote:

I don't know what you mean by the Constitution's principles. Perhaps you could expand on that.


_____________________________________


This is one of the best sites on principles I've run across:

Declaration of Constitutional Principles
Address:http://www.constitution.org/consprin.htm

It is very slow reading at first, but when the author gets down to specifics, - good stuff:

"Principles Specific to the Constitution for the United States":

*The term "commerce" as used in Art. I, Sect. 8, consists only of exchanges of goods and services for a valuable consideration. "... among the states" is a restriction to those exchanges that begin in one state and end in another.
It does not include everything that has ever been a part of such an exchange, or that might be a part of such an exchange in the future, or which is a part of an aggregate of such exchanges some of which may begin in one state and end in another, or which "affect" such exchanges.

*The power to "regulate" commerce includes the powers to license those enterprises which engage in such exchanges, and to prescribe the form, size, quality, measure, labeling, scheduling, transport, and routing of goods and services, but not prohibition of the content or terms of such exchanges. It includes the power to impose civil penalties for violation of such regulations, such as fines or loss of licenses, but not criminal penalties, such as the deprivation of life or liberty.

*The power to impose an excise tax may not be used for any purpose then to raise revenue. It is not the power to prohibit an item by imposing a confiscatory tax on it, or by refusing to accept payment of a tax on it and then declaring the item itself illegal because the tax has not been paid. For this reason, the National Firearms Act of 1934 is unconstitutional.


_________________________________________


It goes on in much more detail. Well worth reading.



91 posted on 03/11/2005 5:04:13 PM PST by P_A_I
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To: P_A_I
You know you can repeat the same thing over and over and over again, but it won't make it true. I very clearly set out in reply #88 how you take quotes out of context, read into them meanings that were not even implied, and then answer those meanings with revelations that are not germane to the topic at hand.

You did however manage to say something new in this last reply. You said:

Wrong. I made no specification as to the party.

Hey! Wake up. The party was the context.

If maybe you weren't so busy cutting and pasting, just maybe, you might be able to write an explanation or argument supporting of your position, instead of devolving into unsupported statements. For example:

That's your imaginary take on what I wrote. The context is evident in my post, just above.

and

How daft. My position is not 'authoritarian' at all. Anyone can read my post above to verify that fact. As you well know, but ignore. Thats whats really weird about this post of yours. Do you have a point to all this? Or are you just playing wordgames?

and

Context is all, my boy. My words stand as written.

Such statements of conclusion as a reply to explanations are vague at best, and do not qualify as argument. Since they are made without specificity and lacking in any supportive explanation, you reduce discourse to nothing more than insults.

Whatever. I see now you're intent on flamebaiting..

But that is what you have doing in every reply since you first entered the discussion back in reply #81. And now you whimper about one small word describing your conduct. This is most telling.

I notice that you did not disagree with my statement that the RLC is an anti-Libertarian Party authoritarian organization. You only complained that I brought it up. Hmmmm.

92 posted on 03/11/2005 5:47:25 PM PST by jackbob
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To: jackbob
The context of your statement "not at all," was a denial that Libertarianism, as presented by the Libertarian Party, "stands independent of, and expands the zone of freedom beyond, the federal constitution."

Wrong. I made no specification as to the 'party'.

Your commentary to support this denial, that "rational libertarians are honor bound to our Constitutions principles, as we all are.." was a clear attempt by you to limit Libertarian philosophy, as presented by the Libertarian Party, to only the "Constitutions principles."

That's your imaginary take on what I wrote. The context is evident in my post, just above.

You did however manage to say something new in this last reply. You said:
Wrong. I made no specification as to the party.
Hey! Wake up. The party was the context.

Wake up yourself. You want "the party" to be the subject. It's not. The real subject here has become your libertarian bashing mania.

If maybe you weren't so busy cutting and pasting, just maybe, you might be able to write an explanation or argument supporting of your position, instead of devolving into unsupported statements. For example: That's your imaginary take on what I wrote. The context is evident in my post, just above. and How daft. My position is not 'authoritarian' at all. Anyone can read my post above to verify that fact. As you well know, but ignore. Thats whats really weird about this post of yours. Do you have a point to all this? Or are you just playing wordgames? and Context is all, my boy. My words stand as written.

Nice cut & paste job, bobbyjack, but what did you prove? -- Nothing.

Such statements of conclusion as a reply to explanations are vague at best, and do not qualify as argument. Since they are made without specificity and lacking in any supportive explanation, you reduce discourse to nothing more than insults.

Whatever. I see now you're intent on flamebaiting..

But that is what you have doing in every reply since you first entered the discussion back in reply #81. And now you whimper about one small word describing your conduct. This is most telling.

Whatever.

I notice that you did not disagree with my statement that the RLC is an anti-Libertarian Party authoritarian organization. You only complained that I brought it up. Hmmmm.

How silly. "Notice" whatever you imagine.. Now, -- why don't you run along and find someone else to bug?

93 posted on 03/11/2005 7:18:35 PM PST by P_A_I
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To: P_A_I
Well there you go again. I see that your first three comments that you are still making up conclusionary statements with no supporting analysis, in total disregard for the evidence at hand. I more than substantially explained and presented evidence of the Libertarian Party context in the first six paragraphs of my reply #88. Your brushing past all that, with unsupported denials and childish insults, is quite sophomoric.

Now you propose that "the real subject here has become" my "libertarian bashing mania." Of course I have nothing against a new subject being brought in, especially since you so totally defaulted on the last one. The only problem here is that you bring in a new subject with a false claim about me, but no supporting evidence, no analysis, no argument, and not even an explanation. It really sounds just like another one of your unsupported childish statement with no evidence to back it up.

I find that when someone has something substantial to say, they do not rely on insults to make their point. They may use counter insults, but they never initiate them. But what has surprised me is how you initiated insults, and then cry foul when you get it thrown back in your face.

94 posted on 03/11/2005 10:12:11 PM PST by jackbob
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To: jackbob
jackbob wrote:

I more than substantially explained and presented evidence of the Libertarian Party context in the first six paragraphs of my reply #88.

And I've been countering your slurs on [small 'l'] american libertarians since our dialog on this thread started.
As I've noted, you seem obsessed with hatred for libertarianism to the point that you falsely claim to be one in order to misrepresent libertarian views on the US Constitution.

Feel free to continue your little 'crusade', as I will continue to expose it as libertarian bashing mania.

95 posted on 03/12/2005 9:22:30 AM PST by P_A_I
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To: P_A_I
As I set out in my reply #88, the discussion you entered into had to do with libertarian ideas as they relate to the Libertarian Party. Since the Libertarian Party, as well as even anarchist libertarians, are a significant part of the over all libertarian movement, any thing said about libertarianism in general, automatically encompasses them.

Your reply #81, to the comment by "secretagent" in #44, on his summary of the LP principle (which can be quite accurately viewed as a lower case libertarian also), was made into an already existing discussion of libertarianism as it is advocated by the Libertarian Party. Secretagent's comment that you replied to set out the same principle as the LP in its first two sentences. Secretagent then went on to state in his in his third and last sentence that:

This stands independent of, and expands the zone of freedom beyond, the federal constitution.

On which you reply:

Independant & beyond? - Not at all. Rational libertarians are honor bound to our Constitutions principles, as we all are..

My disagreement with your narrow authoritarian "not at all" comment and follow up explanation as a restriction on libertarians (lower or capitol), was in no way an attack on libertarianism.

Your claim that you have been countering my "slurs on [small 'l'] american libertarians" is quite grandiose, as I have only been replying to your words.

I disagreed with your comment, and pointed out the authoritarian aspect of your words. You are not the embodiment of all libertarianism. A disagreement with your words, does not automatically mean a disagreement with libertarianism.

Of course I could be wrong here. Do you have any source material to support this notion of yours?

96 posted on 03/12/2005 11:17:57 AM PST by jackbob
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To: jackbob
Of course I could be wrong here.

Anybody that reads our exchange can see that you are indeed.
And no, no source material will be furnished to support your pedantic notions.. -- You need rest, not more fuel for your anti-libertarian imaginings.

97 posted on 03/12/2005 12:34:17 PM PST by P_A_I
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To: P_A_I
I see Argumentum Ad Populum... again.

I must admit, that some times I wait to long, always giving the benefit of the doubt. But looking over the thread, I have to now concede that you are extremely anti-libertarian. No libertarian would write what you write. Your claiming to be a libertarian is fraudulent. Thus you are a fraud.

I quite recently found a lesson for you while lurking around the internet. You may do well to consider it.

...absolute faith in one's own virtue is not a commitment to virtuous behavior but a commitment to one's own will.

Of course there is nothing wrong with a commitment to ones own will. But it is quite delusional to have "absolute faith in one's own virtue."

98 posted on 03/12/2005 1:36:34 PM PST by jackbob
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To: jackbob
Hitler human, still disturbing in the bunker
Address:http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-chat/1361539/posts

" -- absolute faith in one's own virtue is not a commitment to virtuous behavior but a commitment to one's own will. ."

Fanatics about "virtue" are found at every political level,left/right/center.

Fanaticism itself is the real evil, imo. -- Being overzealous for most ANY cause can lead to disaster.
P_A_I


_____________________________________



jackbob wrote, -- with absolute faith in his own virtue:

Of course there is nothing wrong with a commitment to ones own will.

But it is quite delusional to have "absolute faith in one's own virtue."






How true bobbyjack.. Once again you have awed us all with the triumph of your will.

Lord but, - it must be great to be you!
99 posted on 03/12/2005 1:54:28 PM PST by P_A_I
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To: P_A_I
The power to "regulate" commerce includes the powers to license those enterprises which engage in such exchanges, and to prescribe the form, size, quality, measure, labeling, scheduling, transport, and routing of goods and services, but not prohibition of the content or terms of such exchanges. It includes the power to impose civil penalties for violation of such regulations, such as fines or loss of licenses, but not criminal penalties, such as the deprivation of life or liberty.

This sounds constitutional but, by itself, definitely not libertarian.

Libertarians oppose most, if not all, government licensing. It varies with the libertarian - among those who see a need for a minimal government.

And of course to the anarchist libertarians, all government constitutions fail the acid test of libertariansim, since they violate the non-initiation of force rule.

100 posted on 03/12/2005 2:19:50 PM PST by secretagent
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