Sunday, March 08, 2009

Just A Reminder

Sometimes it needs to be said, again and again and again, until some people get it. No-one has said it better than L. Neil Smith.
A libertarian is a person who believes that no one has the right, under any circumstances, to initiate force against another human being for any reason whatever; nor will a libertarian advocate the initiation of force, or delegate it to anyone else.

Those who act consistently with this principle are libertarians, whether they realize it or not. Those who fail to act consistently with it are not libertarians, regardless of what they may claim.
— L. Neil Smith
Yes. Libertarians are strong believers in property rights. We believe in self determination. A strong belief in right of self defence is a core belief. But, nowhere will you find a real libertarian who espouses genocide or the wanton destruction of innocents. These are not libertarian principles and they are a deal breaker. If you talk up actions such as these it doesn't matter if you agree with 80 or 90 % of other libertarian values. You. Aren't. A. Libertarian.

The very word is being watered down till it is becoming unrecognizable. People and politicians are calling themselves libertarians, even when it is painfully obvious that they are conservatives or even neo-conservatives. These people are damaging the brand beyond belief and it has to stop. The worst offenders may well be ensconced within the Washington Beltway in the Libertarian Party offices. That particular branch has seemingly been taken over by refugee Republicans or something similar. They certainly don't speak like libertarians and they avoid issues that libertarians are actually concerned with. If this is political expediency then it needs to be abandoned at all levels.

Too many libertarians are concerned with projecting a political image that doesn't frighten the plebs. It's too bad that they have forgotten that libertarianism is, by its very nature, a radical philosophy. Much like the Declaration of Independence was, and is, a radical document written by a radical man. It's time that libertarians started reclaiming their philosophy from the poseurs. It's time to point out that not everyone who says they're a libertarian is. If we don't stop the rot then the damage will be fatal. It may not be too late, but time is running short. It's time to call out the pretenders.

UPDATE: I meant to add a link to this in the main body yesterday, but it just didn't make it. Even the founder of the LP thinks it may be too late to save it.

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1 comment:

B.W. Richardson said...

Yep. What you said.