Friday, September 06, 2013


Ole Perfesser Glenn Reynolds likes to call himself a libertarian. Now, his libertarianism is effectively anti-abortion, but that's no contradiction because, as libertarians constantly tell us, libertarians don't have to support a woman's right to choose -- and, considering what a sausage fest the movement is, that's got to be a big part of the attraction for guys who like their Maximum Freedom to come with an exemption for chicks.

(If you're a fan of this sort of thing, do check out the new Reason story assuring wingnuts that "Conservatives are wrong to worry that libertarian policies will lead to libertinism." The author, like all these guys, describes herself as pro-choice, but reports with excitement that "support for unregulated abortion is declining, with a slight majority now describing itself as pro-life, a startling reversal from a decade ago," and it's all because of Freedom. Whether you like abortion rights or think they're murder and must be banned, you're sure to love the new libertarian future!)

In this weird era of wingnuts pretending to be peaceniks, libertarians are reaching out -- but not to the liberals who've sided with them on Syria. This month CPAC will have a regional conference. The last national CPAC conference, you may remember, had a panel on bridging the gap with black people, which worked out terribly. This one will feature a panel which should go a lot better, called "Can Social Conservatives and Libertarians Ever Get Along?" American Conservative Union Chairman Al Cardenas thinks they can: "At a time when President Obama is leading the country off the economic, social, and foreign policy 'cliff,' I am confident that libertarians and social conservatives can find enough common ground to save the United States of America," he says.

Makes sense. As National Review has told us, Rick Santorum and libertarians have a lot in common, and what do liberals stand for that libertarians should approve? Besides abortion rights, which, we have established, have nothing to do with freedom.

How about overturning stop-and-frisk laws? That should be an easy libertarian lay-up, and indeed Reason has several articles critical of the practice and supportive of its overturn in New York -- though, if you make the mistake of looking into the comments, you'll find the punters are mostly anxious to tell each other that it's actually liberals who are for stop-and-frisk because Bloomberg hates soda freedom.

But while their magazine is good on the subject, out in the wide world you don't hear a lot of big-time libertarians complaining about the practice (like Rand Paul -- and he's their director of minority outreach!), though they and other conservatives have been ceaselessly enraged about airport scanners since, oh, about January 20, 2009. In fact you'll find some professed libertarians who support stop-and-frisk.

The reason for the difference is self-evident: Stop-and-frisk is generally not a White People Problem. And if it's not a White People Problem, it's probably not going to do much for the libertarian/social conservative alliance.

Reynolds usually keeps his mouth shut about stop-and-frisk, too, though sometimes he uses it as part of the anti-urban shtick that excites his base. This week he came up with a classic of the genre:
Speaking of urban agony, by the way — if folks on the right were truly Macchiavellian, they’d be joining the critics of stop-and-frisk. The big Blue enclaves are where the crime and racial strife mostly are; letting those get worse would probably benefit folks on the right. Luckily for the hipsters, righties are too principled for that sort of “heightening the contradictions” thing.
You have to admire the density of it: He not only gets in knocks on effete city folks and "hipsters," and  the obligatory Ooga Booga, but he ends by suggesting that conservative support for stop-and-frisk is "principled" rather than reactionary.

When I criticize people like Reynolds as glibertarians or bullshit libertarians or whatever, don't get me wrong -- it's not out of respect for genuine libertarians. It's that the only libertarianism we're ever likely to get is the kind that conservatives have been giving us all along.

UPDATE. @SAHenryKrinkle tips me to FreedomWorks blogger Kemberlee Kaye. The tea party outfit says it's all about the "fight for less government, lower taxes, and more freedom" but Kaye is still pissed that a judge ruled against New York's stop-and-frisk, because that only looks like Freedom to the untrained eye:
The ill-written decision (quite literally the most poorly written, constructed and reasoned federal decision I've ever read) veiled as a Fourth Amendment win, appears to be nothing more than political correctness brokering... Neither is it appropriate to use the Fourth Amendment to push baseless diversity initiatives.
Clearly the Fourth Amendment is spoiled for them if they catch black people using it.

UPDATE 2. At LGM Scott Lemieux gives Reynolds' "Ultimate Conservatarian Post " much more thorough treatment than I did.

In comments, FMguru complains, "I thought we were all in agreement that 'Libertarian' was essentially a tag that down-the-line conservatives adopt when they want to distance themselves from some element of the Republican/conservative coalition." Well, sure, but there are inevitably some hardcore types who actually believe in the stuff; don't forget, once upon a time people painted their faces for Adam Ant. History is full of cults.

Also in comments, nomoremister reminds me that one of the Crazy Jesus Lady's most memorable rants was actually inspired by the indignity of white people having to be scanned just like Muslims.

UPDATE 3. I'd like to thank our libertarian advocate in comments for the many lengthy "args" he has encouraged us all to "grok" ("Did you not catch, that TECH IS GOING TO SOLVE THIS whether you and I like it or not?"). Cool stories, bro, but can you just get to the "Buy Gold" pitch already?

UPDATE 4. Sorry, commenters who were having fun with him, I had to remove several of the transhumanist troll's comments, and blacklist him -- I hadn't noticed, but he's basically a scamster running a "Be Your Own Boss" racket, and was planting his links just as less imaginative spam artists do, but with libertarian palaver to keep it interesting. Should have known -- that's <i>the libertarian racket in a nutshell</I> (curtain). UPDATE 4.2. Oops, I just looked again and Arg Grok's site is not, at least on the surface, a commerce site -- his "GUARANTEED INCOME & CHOOSE YOUR BOSS" pitch made me think it was, not to mention his fevered pitchman manner -- you know: never really listen and always be closing. But his hustle seems to be ideological.  I'm leaving him blocked, nonetheless, because I'm sick of him.


  1. gocart mozart11:33 AM

    Shorter all libertarians: If you take some freedoms from the blahs and the wimmins, there will be more left over for meeee!

  2. mortimer200011:49 AM

    Stop-and-frisk is generally not a White People Problem. And if it's not a White People Problem, it's probably not going to do much for the libertarian/social conservative alliance.

    This. Especially true when you consider that the whole point of stop-and-frisk is to arrest people for possession of one of the most revered things in Glenn Reynolds' liberloony universe: guns.

    Sure. They want to be labeled "libertarian." Just don't put the word "civil" in front of it.

  3. coozledad11:56 AM

    When I used to work at a bookstore, I sold a first edition of a book of proslavery arguments to a libertarian prof who later ran for governor. I was taken aback when he defended them, saying,"This was these guys faith. They believed this." He said it as though it made it alright.

    I'm beginning to think that in addition to merely being a younger, kickier version of Republican dogmeat, they're just overaccessoirzed klan

  4. JennOfArk11:58 AM

    Libertarians are essentially rightwingers who are just sentient enough to understand that their obvious bias in favor of white male privilege doesn't look good to the public at large, which is mostly non-white male, and who are just smart enough to scantily cloak it in terms of high-minded principle. Which is just good enough to sometimes convince other white males to join their ideological bromance, but still not good enough to convince anyone else to fuck themselves over for the greater good of white male privilege.

  5. J P Oatler12:46 PM

    You read the comments on the Reason site? Now there's an ocean of boiling dog vomit I don't want to drink...

  6. Haystack12:50 PM

    It's so cute how they discuss their tangled cluster of fears and resentments as if it were a philosophy.

  7. So here's my best explanation as to why all libertarians seem to be full of shit, in particular on stop and frisk. There are a lot of types of libertarianism, but they're all unified by one goal - opposition to coercion. A noble goal, but there are two flaws that get into every single variation of this philosophy. One, their definition of "coercion" is extremely narrow. Basically, they define coercion as the government putting a gun to your head and saying "Do it or we'll arrest you." Anything short of that doesn't rate. In my experience, most of them are unconcerned about coercion from private sources, such as business, religious, cultural or non-governmental political groups. The excuse (rather questionable, in my opinion) is that you have more of a choice when the coercion is coming from a non-government body.

    Now, stop and frisk would obviously be considered coercive even under their paradigm. But there's a second problem that stops it from really catching fire. You see, there's government coercion, and then there's government coercion. The concern is levied mostly at the United States government - many things that they would consider "tyranny" at the federal level they have no problem with at the state, county or city. The excuse for this one (even weaker than the last) is that people have more say at those levels, even when they really don't. The problem with stop and frisk is that it's far enough removed from the big bad fed that most of the (primarily white) libertarian movement is able to rationalize it away.

    Reynolds, on the other hand, is just an asshole. It's no more complex than that.

  8. Al Swearengen12:54 PM

    Libertarianism is the freedom to wear black leather jackets and smoke pot. And not be lumped in with those frumpy Bible-thumpers.

    When it comes to the courage of their convictions, they're cowards.

  9. FMguru12:55 PM

    I thought we were all in agreement that "Libertarian" was essentially a tag that down-the-line conservatives adopt when they want to distance themselves from some element of the Republican/conservative coalition. - usually the more out-there Christian fundamentalist stuff. It's a way of signalling "I'm a conservative, but not one of those crazy fundy Jesus conservatives." Although, as Roy notes, they're dropping even the token opposition to the crazy fundy Jesus stuff. When someone describes themselves as a libertarian, they're basically admitting they are bog-standard conservative shitheels who feel a need to pretend that they aren't.

    It also gives them an out when they're called to account for their side's policy failures - that wasn't me, man, I'm a libertarian, not a Republican. Which, interestingly, was also the founding purpose of the Tea Baggers (a rebadging of the same old conservative activist base, now pretending to be a completely new grassroots movement and not at all accountable for the financial meltdown and Dubya and the Iraq War) in January 2009.

    Watching our libertarians not give a shit about clear civil liberties issues (like Stop And Frisk) is always illuminating, especially when compared to how furious thing like the TSA makes them (the difference, of course, is that the TSA inconveniences white people - some of whom live in suburbs! - and not just poor city-dwelling minorities).

  10. PulletSurprise1:16 PM

    They were a lot more fun when they were just GOPers who wanted to smoke pot legally.

  11. PersonaAuGratin1:16 PM

    ... righties are too principled for that sort of “heightening the contradictions” thing.

    And the Great Recession was the fault of unprincipled lefties cynically acquiescing to three decades of deregulation and laissez-faire-ism in the hope it would bring about The Revolution that much more quickly.

  12. sharculese1:20 PM

    "support for unregulated abortion is declining, with a slight majority now describing itself as pro-life, a startling reversal from a decade ago,"

    This is a less interesting thing than Dalmia seems to think it is (and the 'unregulated abortion' phrasing is a tell, in case you couldn't figure out on your own that she's about as pro-choice as McMegan.) It's superficially true that more people identify as pro-life, but what that leaves out is that increasingly people identify as simultaneously pro-life and pro-choice, which generally means they are personally opposed to abortion but don't want to take it away from other people. It's you're increasingly seeing abortion advocacy orgs moving away from the choice label and towards a focus on individual experiences with abortion. It's just not a good descriptor anymore, if it ever was.

    Of course, these 'life and choice' people are more likely to fall for bullshit of the 'well, why shouldn't we force doctors to tell women that abortion causes breast cancer' variety, but you address that with education, outreach, and, again, personal storytelling, not by excitedly shouting ZEITGEIST! and knocking the game board over.

  13. sharculese1:21 PM

    Not even pot can make libertarians fun. The concept is antithetical to them.

  14. brandonrg1:24 PM

    No, it was obviously the fault of the poor blahs taking out loans they couldn't afford and the CRA forcing those poor, innocent banks into making the loans, turning them into derivatives and then selling all sorts of fancy financial instruments based on that. If the government wasn't forcing this down their throats, they never would have engaged in these business practices that have made them all extremely wealthy!

  15. Cervantes1:31 PM

    There's no such thing as a "genuine" libertarian. Libertarianism collapses of its own contradictions. It simply makes no sense. (For those who haven't thought this through, in a nutshell, legitimate authority, redistributing power, is necessary to preserve liberty. Liberty is impossible without restriction.)

  16. Libertarians are people who courageously resist any government encroachment on their personal freedom on the grounds that the private sector can oppress you more efficiently.

    You know -- morons.

  17. calling all toasters1:32 PM

    The difference between conservatives and libertarians: Conservatives believe that freedom is letting rich white men fuck everyone else, but libertarians believe that middle class white men should be allowed to remain unviolated.

  18. calling all toasters1:36 PM

    ...whereas real philosophy has longer words and more obscure references.

  19. Mooser1:39 PM

    Gee, I hate to mention this, but as the real world goes, isn't the US one of the most libertarian countries around?

  20. Mooser1:42 PM

    "Libertarianism is the freedom to wear black leather jackets and smoke pot."

    A better way to put that might be: "Only Libertarians would wear a black leather jacket when they are not riding a motorcycle."

  21. LittlePig1:47 PM

    Luckily for the hipsters, righties are too principled for that sort of “heightening the contradictions” thing.

    Since when is ratfucking principled?

  22. LittlePig1:48 PM

    There's is more the Somali variety.

  23. nomoremister1:52 PM

    "conservatives have been ceaselessly enraged about airport scanners since, oh, about January 20, 2009"

    Well, actually, they were upset even in the Bush years -- Peggy Noonan's anti-TSA "You are embarrassing the angels!" diatribe was in 2006:

    If exterminating the Moo-slimes means inconvenience for white people, well, that's a bridge too far.

  24. edroso1:59 PM

    Good point! I was so stunned by the whole "embarrassing the angels" rant that I forgot what set it off.

  25. PulletSurprise2:00 PM

    "That which I do to another needs to be free of consequence, but what another does to me is where I need some help. Ergo guns."

  26. It's Anarchy Lite. I.e., Anarchy for people too chickenshit to act on their ridiculous convictions.

  27. synykyl2:06 PM

    ... Rick Santorum and libertarians have a lot in common ...

    I'm not sure who should be more insulted by that. Probably Santorum, but it's a close call.

  28. Cervantes2:09 PM

    I see it as a sort of trope that can be applied to government action they don't like - e.g., making rich people pay taxes or environmental regulations (which obviously enhance most people's liberty!) -- and just as conveniently forgotten when they want government to do something for them. As we know, as a consistent ideology it makes no sense so of course it has to be applied selectively.

  29. Halloween_Jack2:21 PM

    That's always been my go-to definition of libertarianism: wanting exactly as much government as that individual can use personally, which makes zero sense in the big picture, but these aren't really big-picture people.

  30. Halloween_Jack2:23 PM

    All that they'd do when baked is insist that Springsteen is one of them. That would actually explain quite a lot of that sort of thing, come to think of it.

  31. BigHank532:37 PM

    If by "libertarian" you mean wildly self-contradictory, incapable of following an argument to its logical conclusion, and generally preferring comforting fantasy to the cold light of day, then we're so fucking libertarian it'll bring tears to your eyes.

  32. JennOfArk2:40 PM

    Since forever, if they're the ones doing the ratfucking.

  33. Geo X2:40 PM

    I think it's super-funny how there's apparently some libertarian dipshit going through this comments thread and systematically voting every comment down. Yeah--now that's what *I* call sticking it to The Man!

  34. Jimcima2:45 PM

    Now to be fair the three comments to the pro stop-and-frisk FreedomWorks article disagree with the author (I think so anyway, it's not at all clear that they know she is in favor of stop-and-frisk).

    Regardless, some of their "thinking" on the subject of law enforcement is somewhat, er, muddled as in this comment:

    "Cop" was originally an acronym for Constable On Patrol. That's it! That's all it's supposed to be. Just another guy, who happens to get paid to walk around town and be there to help in case anybody is being victimized. They aren't supposed to be stopping, frisking, or searching anybody on "suspicion" of anything.

  35. MasterD2:49 PM

    I used to hold libertarian beliefs.

    Then I grew up.

  36. BigHank532:58 PM

    Wait 'til he figures out he fire up the browser on his phone and downvote 'em all again! That'll show those fucking liberals!

  37. RealGuy2:58 PM

    Yep, there's no doubt that the Vagina Vigilantes would will do all they can in their service to the D-R tribe to keep the people divided over nominal issues compared to war, freedom, and government intrusion.

    It's especially a tactic by Penis Protectors like Ray, that want to protect the rights of the poor to fuck without a condom, that are most out in front on the issue.

  38. sharculese3:10 PM

    Wait, wingnuts are trying to mandate condom usage now? Do, uh, the Catholics know about this? Because they might not be as on board as you're hoping.

  39. sharculese3:10 PM

    That was just me, trying to sew dissension in the ranks.


  40. sharculese3:11 PM

    Also super racist.

  41. Complaints about prominent libertarians not opposing stop-and-frisk are fair. I suppose you'll be equally critical of prominent Democrats (like Obama and Clinton and Schumer) if and when the President appoints Ray Kelly to head DHS? Or, you know, now.

  42. edroso3:16 PM

    I opposed the Libyan adventure, and I oppose the upcoming Syrian adventure, though I haven't gotten around to writing about it.

    I've been opposing American military adventures for years -- much longer, I would guess, than most of the guys who demand consistency from me.

  43. Downthumbs for FREEDOM™, libtards!!!!

  44. Obama is quite the libertarian when it comes to regulating banks.

    (I refer to his actions and not his rhetoric, of course.)

  45. once upon a time peoplepainted their faces for Adam Ant. History is full of cults.

    The Toledo nightlife in the 80's? Hawt, babies, H.A.W.T.
    I haz a jelus.

  46. sharculese3:31 PM

    Many, I'm no word nerd, but this feels super backronymy to me.

  47. PulletSurprise3:33 PM

    I should have been more specific. More fun for ME.

  48. Halloween_Jack3:35 PM

    Also of relevance: How I Outgrew Libertarianism. tl;dr--he graduated from college and met actual poor people.

  49. Mooser4:10 PM

    Gosh, Roy, you don't think that no matter what happens, Obama won't be lauded for trying to do the right thing?

    I am still amazed by how big a chump Obama is. And I am sure everyone urging Obama to bomb is only looking out for Obama's best interests and Obama's legacy.

    I bet those people are looking at the article on TPM about how people in Louisiana blame Obama for the response to Katrina (!) and drooling. They'll unload the entire Iraq and Afghanistan war on Obama.

  50. Mooser4:13 PM

    "If by "libertarian" you mean..."

    Gosh, I thought libertarianism meant you were entitled to your own facts just like you are entitled to your own property.

  51. Mooser4:14 PM

    "Also super racist."

    Are you going to deny people their right to think what they want to about people, and act on their beliefs?

  52. Mooser4:17 PM

    Being really stoned and listening to Springsteen sucks. It sucks worse than hearing him sober.
    Now, Springsteen's "E-street Band" backing up Gary "US" Bonds? That's a whole different song-and-dance, and much, much better.

  53. realinterrobang4:32 PM

    The technical term is "spurious back-formation," but yeah, either way...

    I just like the word "spurious." Particularly when it's used in context with "libertarian." Spurious! Spurious libertarians!

  54. BigHank534:44 PM

    Now, I had heard that "cop" was short for "copper", because the first constables employed by Scotland Yard were issued uniforms with copper buttons.

  55. BigHank534:51 PM

    Your link's buggered. But once I un-buggered it the essay was worth it.

  56. bourbaki4:56 PM

    I'm really hoping we can get a Glenn Reynolds reaction to this story about the UAW possibly unionizing (with managements support!) a VW plant in Tennessee. Apparently the Governor of the state is opposed to this. The last paragraph is also pretty mind blowing.

    In the letter to Chattanooga employees, Mr. Fischer and Mr. Patta wrote
    that they wanted to “prevent any influence from outside driving a wedge
    into our great team.”

    That resembles language that anti-union companies often use to suggest
    that unions would be an undesirable third party that gets between
    employees and managers. But a U.A.W. official said that sentence
    referred to anti-union groups, like the Competitive Enterprise Institute
    and its Center for Economic Freedom, that have vigorously criticized
    Volkswagen for not battling to keep out a union the way that many
    American companies do.

    Heh. Indeed.

  57. Derelict5:00 PM

    Pretty much this. So many of the glibertarians I know are really enthused by the prospect of state apparatus being used to oppress people--so long as those people are minorities or folks who don't share the glibertarian political fantasy. You get a free turn if the subject is, say, gay rights: Giving gays the right to not be beaten in the streets somehow subtracts from the glibertarian's freedumb.
    Amazing that they can screech endlessly about FREEDUMB!!!11! and yet apparently have no comprehension of what that word actually means.

  58. Dr. Hunky Jimpjorps5:12 PM

    This is word salad.

  59. sharculese5:13 PM

    according to wiktionary, it is short for copper, but that's probably derivative of cop as in 'to take' (because's cops grab criminals)

  60. JennOfArk5:15 PM

    Freedom (n): another word for nothin' left to lose.

  61. Dr. Hunky Jimpjorps5:16 PM

    It's easy to reconcile the libertarian opposition to "imposition of force" if you know who they're identifying as the aggressor and victim.

    Instead of stop and frisk being an imposition of force by the NYPD on citizens of New York, to libertarians it's actually self-defense against the real imposers of force: black people.

  62. Derelict5:55 PM

    Many of us have been critical of many aspects of Obama's presidency and politics. I recommend you spend a bit more time here or on some of the other excellent left-leaning blogs (Lawyers, Gun & Money comes to mind) to read the wide array of opinion and dissension.

    BTW, you avatar might want to pull up his pants. Nothing says intellectual heft like an avatar that's mooning the world.

  63. PulletSurprise5:56 PM

    That first paragraph also refers to Bill Haslam and the state Department of Labor & Workforce Development. VW and the state have also been butting heads over the state compelling private companies to allow employees to carry firearms onto company property, aka "guns in parking lots."

    The head of Volkswagen's Chattanooga plant is speaking out against a bill pending in the Tennessee General Assembly to strip employers of the right to ban firearms on company property.

    The proposal headed for vote in a House committee on Tuesday morning would allow people to store legally-owned firearms in vehicles parked at work — regardless of their employers' wishes.

    "That's a sort of thing that makes us a bit nervous," Frank Fischer,
    the CEO and chairman of Volkswagen Chattanooga, said in an interview with The Associated Press on Monday.

    The guns-in-parking-lots measure is a rare instance where the German automaker has been at odds with Tennessee lawmakers, he said.

    "On the whole, the cooperation and mutual understanding has been
    excellent," Fischer said in German. "The only thing we see critically as a company is the guns law.

    "We would not welcome people being able to carry weapons on factory grounds, probably just as little as the state House or Senate would like people to enter their building armed."

    The bill passed and went into effect July 1. "Smaller government" indeed.

  64. mommadillo6:03 PM

    They tried to blame Bill Clinton for Ruby Ridge. I wouldn't put anything past them at this point.

  65. MCSquared6:16 PM

    Also, the TSA workers are unionized.

  66. sharculese6:23 PM

    Translated from the original wingnut: The War on Women is a manufactured distraction from real issues by which I mean issues that affect me.

    People like Roy, who believe low-income people should have access to the full range of reproductive services (presumably? I don't think I've ever seen Roy say that, but he probably does think so, because he's not a shitty person) are part of the problem, because they sincerely advocate for the thing I said one paragraph ago was an insincere distraction.

  67. mrstilton6:23 PM

    Oh, forget about the rightwing sheep-choir, the Adam Ant thing is much more interesting. Not so much the report about the Toledo Ant People itself, mind you, but the ads. There were still drive-in movies! There were still ads in newspapers for porn films! You had to go to a theatre to see them! Gary Coleman was still alive! There was still VEAL BIRD!

  68. I was going to comment and add a bunch of personal attacks against libertarians, but I see that this post and those commenting already have done so. Has anyone argued yet that everything libertarians say is wrong because at one time one of them is suggested to have worked for the Koch brothers? Can I comment something about libertarians having poor motives or something? I know- did anyone yet comment that libertarians aren't really people and thus everything they say can be dismissed without thought or analysis? It's tough to comment on here when you guys take all the good comments.

  69. FMguru6:44 PM

    Some day I'll read a defense of libertarianism that isn't just whining about how mean and unfair its critics are being.

    Today's not looking like that day, though.

    I'm not real hopeful about tomorrow, either.

  70. Pope Zebbidie XIII6:53 PM

    The Curious Case of the Spurious Furious Liberatrian.

  71. Pope Zebbidie XIII6:55 PM

    Downvoted for extra paranoia points.

  72. Pope Zebbidie XIII7:07 PM

    Apparently alicublog has just crossed a thin, red whine.

  73. XeckyGilchrist7:31 PM

    Redundant, though - "Libertarian" entails "spurious."

  74. XeckyGilchrist7:32 PM

    So that's why the captured criminals all say "It's a fair cop."

  75. XeckyGilchrist7:34 PM

    Only because they have this delusion that as soon as taxes are abolished the middle-class white men will be rich white men.

  76. XeckyGilchrist7:36 PM

    Yeah, there are lots of links I see where all you have to do is hover over the link and see the URL to get the idea that the comments section is going to be a Sewer-O-Hate™. With Reason links you don't even need to do that - you can smell it right through the screen.

  77. I agree totally with you- you don't sound like the type that would read a book on libertarianism, either today or tomorrow.

    Libertarianism Defended (Paperback), by Tibor R. Machan, is available on ( and sounds like a book that you might read though if you really wanted to read intellectual arguments defending libertarianism.

  78. whetstone8:02 PM

    Apparently not. The introduction to "Libertarianism Defended" begins with whining about how mean and unfair its critics are being.

    Often, people who tend to be taken quite seriously simply dismiss libertarianism with a kind of wave of their intellectual hand, making only the briefest reference to some line of argument they are relying upon – as if it were axiomatic that the libertarian option can’t cut it.

    Second paragraph! There's more, starting at $32USD.

  79. M. Krebs8:07 PM

    With thousand island dressing.

  80. A glass of Whinefindel, Pope Z?



  81. synykyl8:10 PM

    Are you sure you want us to give libertarianism the respect it deserves?

  82. whetstone8:12 PM

    This reminds me most of Marxism: you point to what the people with any political power whatsoever who are or claim to be Marxists, and you are told THAT IS NOT MARXISM! HERE, READ THIS 700 PAGE TRACT ABOUT PURE MARXISM, COMRADE! I'm sure that it's great, and in the confines of that venue, works perfectly.

    Pope Zebbide may well enjoy "intellectual arguments defending libertarianism," but those and a quarter will get you a gumball. The people who are actually claiming the mantle of libertarianism while busy mercilessly rogering it over and over may be a more vital audience.

  83. whetstone8:15 PM

    Penis Protector would look good on a business card, "Ray."

  84. smut clyde8:24 PM

    Freedom (n): 14 points, not counting double-letter scores or word scores.

  85. smut clyde8:25 PM

    Let me know if you find that bus card I lost the other day.

  86. smut clyde8:28 PM

    I like the definition "Anarchists who want the Government to keep their slaves in line".

  87. Mark_Bzzzz8:33 PM

    I saw Adam Ant last month. Yes, he still tours. He still puts on a great show, and it was pretty well attended.

  88. Mark_Bzzzz8:35 PM

    And yes, there were several people there who painted their faces Adam Ant style. Adam wasn't one of them.

  89. montag28:38 PM

    M'self, I think this latest whining from Reynolds is just an indicator that he has too much time on his hands, so he really does need a diversion to keep him occupied, and give him the opportunity for some heartfelt hyperbole. It's time to assemble a ninja team to steal his chainsaw.

  90. TGuerrant8:47 PM

    He's in Seattle tomorrow night.

  91. TGuerrant8:58 PM

    Ssssssh, that's Anthony Weiner in disguise.

  92. Jeffrey_Kramer9:06 PM

    The righties who were "too principled for that sort of thing" come from an alternate universe where President McCain proposed health care reform based on the Romney-Heritage plan and Democrats devoted themselves to making it fail at all costs, going so far as to turn down money for the expansion of Medicaid for the explicit purpose of making sure "McCainCare" got the reputation for disease and death caused by the Democrats own cynical subversion of it.

    It's one of those vanishingly rare alternate universes, like the ones in which people can quantum-tunnel through walls.

  93. Jeffrey_Kramer9:14 PM

    It's sort of Bizarro-world Rawlsianism.

  94. MikeJ9:21 PM

    Nothing says intellectual heft like an avatar that's mooning the world.

    The middle name Wayne is already the universal sign for "serial killer".

  95. I'm beginning to think that libertarianism in America means pretty much whatever you want it to mean.

  96. FMguru10:16 PM

    So, your full-throated defense of your shitty, shitty political philosophy is "buy and read this $32 book"?

    The Libertarian racket in a nutshell, indeed.

    With such skilled and convincing outreach, it continues to be a mystery why libertarian political candidates routinely get less than 1% of the vote whenever they contend for public office.

  97. Jesus Keeryst people, you need to learn the concept of charitable discussion.

    When arguing with someone, taking what they said and turning it into the worst possible thing, make you WEAK.

    Here's how a libertarian would see it, since I do:

    I am against stop and frisk, I am also against big gulp bans, I am pro-choice, pro-gun, and basically Austrian.

    I don't care if stop and frisk = less death, I also don't want cops all jack booted, even if statistically that makes the less safe. I don't care.


    I am an even firmer believer in state's rights. So IF a state, city wants to ban abortion, or stop and frisk, or ban big gulps, or tax the living shit out of rich people, or become a right to work state, or wtf evah....

    My own personal sense of libertarian freedom is "those people in that state HAVE TO DEAL WITH IT."

    I don't want your shitty states attitudes influencing where I live, and I'm willing to trade away affecting yours.

    What's more, I wake up ever day aware that I choose to live in Austin Texas, I accept the consequences of being in a religious state even though I personally am a first class hedon.

    This is all perfectly logically consistent.

    Yes everyone in American should move wherever they are happiest (this is happening anyway to the zip code). We are a nation of movers, and MOST of the animosity on display here and at conserva tive sites is a DIRECT REFLECTION of nationalizing ever goddamn issue.

    Decentralizing decision making / authority lets people find the place they are happiest, So we can stop arguing about shit and get most of what we want by moving our feet.

    We are a nation of movers. Thats our advantage. Stop pretending it is a bad thing.


    As to Glenn, well again, putting on a political strategy hat and smartly pointing out odd ways to hack alliances, is just an intellectual exercise.

    If you want to know if he favors stop and frisk, ASK HIM, if he says "Yes I like it!" that's not the same as "I'd never live there, but if NY wants to do it, let them suffer their own consequences"

    Before you all run your mouths, think about what his nuance might actually be.

    You don't have to be wrong, but when you fail to truly consider what someone really means, you probably are.

  98. MBouffant10:37 PM

    Shorter this dude: If I'm not there & it isn't actually & directly effecting me, what. Ev. Er.

    Also, love it or leave it.

  99. Remember when all of Megan McArdle's magical negro neighbors lined up to thank her for gentrifying their neighborhood?

    Republicans who smoked weed in college and possibly got laid. That's all they are.

  100. montag210:46 PM

    I'm pretty sure this is what's called, in Texas, a hissy-fit.

  101. BigHank5310:51 PM

    Oh, then that's your screaming. I was wondering about the new voice...

  102. redoubt11:22 PM

    overaccessorized klan

    You mean these guys? (Again?)

  103. BigHank5311:26 PM

    Belle Waring's utter destruction of libertarianism:

    It's a fun college party game. But as an actual model for a functioning polity it's as stupid as the hard-core communal wackjobs that not only wanted to abolish property but also defined relationships: free love, baby! Now, if you want to find a few thousand friends and go off and try to build your libertarian utopia, you've got my blessing. Really. But all most of the so-called "libertarians" seem to want is to get rid of those rules and taxes they personally don't like...which makes them no different from GOP reactionaries.

    Most of the mockery has been directed at these self-deluded hypocrites. If that hurt your feelings you might ask yourself why.

  104. DocAmazing11:50 PM

    To steal a line that was written about the Go-Go's:

    Libertarianism is to anarchy as botulism is to tuna fish.

  105. DocAmazing11:53 PM

    That's the true nub of the Libertarian "don't touch my junk" tantrum.

  106. DocAmazing12:01 AM

    To be fair, there are Libertarians who have produced thoughtful work on civil liberties. Radley Balko comes to mind.

    This guy doesn't.

  107. DocAmazing12:03 AM

    the Toledo Ant People

    There are still whispered legends about the running battles between them and the Cleveland Bow Wow Wow posse.

  108. J Edgar12:08 AM

    After Francisco d'Anconia gave his "Money is Love" speech in Atlas Shrugged he was on his way to the bathroom when he saw a police officer. This inspired his "Constable on Patrol" speech, given to a much smaller audience and lost to posterity, until now.

  109. Note, as mentioned above, I'm not trying to convince you, I'm explaining to you how other people (like me) think.

    The fact that you aren't able to accept this reality, well that obvious.

    If you want to explain why I shouldn't think like I and others think, well then you'd have to confront my args head on, and good luck with that.

    I'm the rebuttal, the opposition to the assertion, my job is just to explain a credible clear honest response that went unconsidered by the writer.

    I've done that.

    If you want to prove I haven't, you'd have to make args, explain why my args were considered, or make new args, not state your opinion.

    I AM glad you like Balko, I don't think we disagree much, I'm just more technically savvy, I have greater faith in distributive systems.

    I want every state to choose ON THEIR OWN, kinda like ratifying an amendment, to demilitarize police.

    To me the ends don;t justify the means.

    We're a strong nation when we trust each state to find its own organic path.

    Particularly today, since we have the Internet, and the Internet gave us gay marriage:

  110. redoubt12:27 AM

    I am an even firmer believer in state's rights.

    Hmm. Where have I heard that before?

  111. Yeah, thats a yawner....

    If we had the Internet in 1945, we'd never had needed a national civil rights movement:

    You're gonna have to make args, real ones, on your own, against someone who has thought more than you.

  112. It's amusing to see the libertarian/conservative down votes in this thread for so many completely on-target comments. Mandatory vaginal probes for women and stop and frisk for brown people, but leave plutocrats and Ayn Rand alooooooone!

  113. "Conservatives are wrong to worry that libertarian policies will lead to libertinism."

    Conservatives only worry about libertinism when it's a Democrat getting his rocks off.

  114. Jeffrey_Kramer12:42 AM

    The level at which it is legitimate for a majority to decide on whether a woman may get an abortion is:

    1, The United States
    2, Texas
    3, Austin, Texas
    4, The 3rd legislative district of Austin, TX
    5, An apartment complex in the 3rd legislative district
    6, My apartment
    7. The pregnant woman in my apartment

    I can understand #7 as the answer. I can understand #1 as the answer. I can't understand why anybody would argue that #2 is the only correct "libertarian" answer. I can't see what libertarianism has at all to do with settling this kind of question. And I certainly don't see what's magical about #2 that makes it uniquely suited to settle the question.

  115. Halloween_Jack1:04 AM

    Unbuggered, for your pleasure.

  116. KatWillow1:07 AM

    Really? They are? Yet they're so glum, so miserable and hate-filled. Guess their benefits are pretty limited.

  117. KatWillow1:10 AM

    support for unregulated abortion is declining was there ever any support for unregulated abortion?

  118. KatWillow1:11 AM

    ... or unregulated appendectomies, or unregulated dental care, or unregulated traffic?

  119. Simply bc the best POSSIBLE way to maximize human liberty over the term of history is to rely on distributed systems.

    America worked great in evolving it moral center long before 1913 (16th).

    And like computers, there was a time when we got some early low hanging fruit out of mainframes.

    In p2p terms, you couldn't have launched Kazaa (true p2p) without first having Napster, literally each node / person didn't have enough files / knowledge to answer their neighbors questions "yes I have that song!"

    BUT, as more and more nodes had more and more info, the natural fastest path of satisfying 95% of search requests, became asking smaller and smaller groups. Good stuff, "files" spread more quickly.

    This is basic genetics / memetics, we simply don't have near as much intellectual inbreeding as we used to. Good idea invade and dominate.

    Look, If you REALLY want to solve abortion at a national level, you'd demand $10B a year in artificial womb R&D... such that women who say "get it out!" they get choice, BUT anybody who wants to pick up the cost themselves of gestation, they get themselves a baby.

    Note this isn't me CHOOSING that answer, bc while I see it as a best possible national solution, I'd vastly prefer to let each state decide.... let like minded people move toward each other, all the while making it harder and harder to hold onto bad ideas bc the Internet.

    The Internet isn't debatable. We have unleashed the fastest level of social change in human history in the past 18 years.

    And while I'm super psyched to see gay marriage take off, I'm aware that I might not get my way in the long run of human history on abortion.

    It seems like more and more people are viewing the moral thing based on viability which is a technology curve (that's why I posit artificial womb as the coming middle ground), so it could be that state by state over time, the notions we have of pro-choice, go the same way as marriage.

    Our BIOS, is states (wholly different machines) spin up and network together thru common language and freedom of movement.

    Each puts all the resources it has to its own endeavors, and along the way, obvious benchmarks, choices, success and fail, forces each entity to ADMIT ON THEIR OWN, anothers code it better.

    If the state bylaws were set up and organized from way back when on having your apartment or Austin, TX make the call, that would be THEIR CHOICE.

    You and I right now? We only get to decide if it is is US or state.

    After we say it is states, then what the state does how they handle things, well thats the same debate again amongst them - and you and I have no reason to concern ourselves, JUST TELL THEM what we think, trust the ideas man.

  120. KatWillow1:15 AM

    That makes as much sense as any libertarian argument.

  121. KatWillow1:17 AM

    People in Louisiana may have combined the gov't response to the BP Oil well "spill" with Katrina. They were almost identical.

  122. KatWillow1:24 AM

    ?? I saw a sign advertising his show here in Reno NV. Seems a lot of former "punk"s are now playing at the Peppermill or Circus Circus Groovy, man!

  123. KatWillow1:25 AM

    Roy's Place will sharpen your wits.

  124. Jeffrey_Kramer1:27 AM

    You and I right now? We only get to decide if it is US or state.

    No. In practice it is decided on the federal level (Texas can't issue abortion restrictions unless these are ultimately approved by the U.S. Supreme Court or Congress). In your imaginary ideal commonwealth, it could be decided on whichever level you wanted. So neither in practice nor in the realm of ideas is "one of the fifty states" the obviously superior level of decision making. and I have no reason to concern ourselves [about how another state handles things]

    That's a strange thing for a libertarian to say, unless you don't think abortion rights have anything to do with rights and liberty.

  125. Some libertarians will even explicitly state that they do not care about private coercion (such as exploitation by an employer). Their argument, if they make one, is that the employee can quit. The lack of understanding (or caring) about the real world is a feature, not a bug.

    This Crooked Timber post and the previous ones it links make up some of the best discussions I've seen on all this:

  126. KatWillow1:30 AM

    First I'd like a clear definition of Libertarianism IS. Nothing Ayn Rand or Megan Arglebargle thinks is good can be good, not even by accident.

  127. KatWillow1:32 AM

    I'd like to start up a pyramid scheme with this comment.

  128. Which, interestingly, was also the founding purpose of the Tea Baggers

    Key observation, and wouldn't you know it, Koch money is behind both "libertarian" outlets (Reason, Cato) and the Tea Party (Americans for Prosperity)! And they're all plutocrat-, pollution- and Republican-friendly! I mean, what are the odds?

  129. mrstilton1:35 AM

    And if the rest of it is as poorly written as that one sentence, I'm sure it's well worth the price!

  130. mrstilton1:37 AM

    Reynolds ... has too much time on his hands

    Nothing says "libertarianism" better than an unfireable state employee who ceased all productive work once he'd been given tenure.

  131. Dude me and Ruth Bader agree

    You must be young. I view basically everything since 1913 as a single wave crash and its still receding.

    Did you not catch, that TECH IS GOING TO SOLVE THIS whether you and I like it or not?

    I'm not saying abortion is changing bc people are becoming more or less moral, I'm saying technology is literally changing what abortion means to them.

    If in 20 years, any baby can be removed at 3.5 months, gestate in a lab, and live a normal life...

    If a woman want to have an abortion at 5 months, and someone say "I'll take it!"

    Exactly what argument is there, except the HARDCORE LIBERTARIAN ONE, that she should get to terminate the viable wanted fetus?

    Good luck selling that extreme personal property arg to the nation.

    I don't think we disagree, I just think that you feel like you have in your hand today a pro-choice freedom, that I am contemplating letting state take it away.

    I'm saying you should be concerned with blue state getting to keep doing it, I know I am.

    Ruth's not, she thinks the res states will change.

    But not even ruth is gonna let that 5 month fetus get terminated when someone else wants it alive.

  132. mrstilton1:41 AM

    No, your job is to serve as a zoo specimen, so that cildren may point at you and gasp n horror, and be warned.

    Oh, and this -- "my job is just to explain a credible clear honest response"? Meaningless word-salad is more often viewed as a sign of mental illness than of libertarianism; though one concedes there is probably a lot of overlap.

  133. mrstilton1:44 AM

    America worked great in evolving it moral center long before 1913 (16th).

    You are the Time Cube guy and I claim my five pounds.

  134. KatWillow1:47 AM

    One can say the same for christianity (or any religion). People who claim the USA is or should be a xtian theocracy, but are completely unfamiliar with the teachings of Jesus. Kind of like that Southern Governor who advocated for having the 10 commandments on a plaque in all courthouses, but could only actually list about 5 of them.

  135. Jeffrey_Kramer1:49 AM

    Did you not catch, that TECH IS GOING TO SOLVE THIS whether you and I like it or not?

    I did catch you saying this. I didn't catch how, even if this is correct, it provides an answer to my question. If TECH WILL SAVE US ALL from having to make difficult legislative decisions, then what in Tech's name is the point in your crusading to have these now-irrelevant decisions made in Austin instead of Washington?

  136. mrstilton1:51 AM

    You might be right about that, Morgan. But until that someone shows up, we'll just carry on mocking you for your incoherent "thinking", amusing delusions and sub-3rd grade writing skills.

    Also: do you constantly substitute "args" for "arguments" because you think it makes you sound clever, or because you don't know how to spell the word out in full? In any case, stop that.

  137. 1.Ya know I started this to try and explain how someone can have a preference, put on a strategy cap, and note there are other interesting things at play.

    STATES 1. bc each state should reach its own conclusion (see bader ginsburg) its healthier 2. bc the Internet makes it EVEN EASIER to trust in 1.

    Then a fear, that if it stays Federal it the right could get wiped out for EVERYBODY, and thats the way things are moving.

    and then hey BTW, IF YOU are a committed national command control guy YOUR BEST play is artificial womb bc, well it is coming, and if it isn't up to states by the time it comes, that another reason the whole thing disappears.

    Tech lets us see fetuses as little humans. It's only going to get better at that. Its going to make it easier to say "well you only have to carry it 5 months, 4 months..."

    And I prefer that in all these decisions it not be a big national calk up. bc.... drumroll..... distributed systems are more effective.

    These are args, real logical, pointed args, if you dont understand why they matter, I can't help you.

  138. I wonder if explains why libertarianism is right even though the slippery slope arguments of Hayek (road to serfdom) and Reagan (against Social Security and Medicare) were proven completely wrong? I'd like libertarians to commit to which of their guiding lights is the One True Libertarian, so that the countless substantive debunks of every single damn one of them would stick. But for the faithful, libertarianism/conservatism cannot fail, it can only be failed. (For a crowd that crows about its superior relative intellect, they're awfully selective about data. Many are quite like evangelical creationists in the comment threads at atheist blogs, actually.)

    Some libertarians will disown Ayn Rand (and there's some validity there, although there's also plenty of overlap). But the shills at Reason love her and even quote her on their masthead. Every good facet of libertarianism is already covered by liberalism. Is there any major libertarian who hasn't been utterly wrong or obtuse about multiple major issues? The more honest libertarians will admit that their ideology requires condemnation of the Civil Rights Act (still!!!), and the more whiny ones will defend Rand "white privilege" "what's the Southern Strategy?" Paul for doing just that. The most charitable thing I can say about all that is, for the sincere libertarians who actually aren't just racists trying to hood their bigotry in 'high principles,' it shows that the ideology has an immense blind spot, is inadequate for the real world, and, uh, sorry, no sale.

  139. BadExampleMan2:02 AM

    As in "put the spurious to them"?

  140. bc typing out args when I can just type args is the same thing as typing bc.

    It's ok I make up for it with args you've never heard before. and let's be frank, you don;t handle new info / ideas well do you?

  141. BadExampleMan2:04 AM

    What's the word for a word that is also an example of its definition? Because "backronym" is one of those.

  142. BadExampleMan2:07 AM

    Ask Rand Paul, the unregulated optometrist.

  143. Jeffrey_Kramer2:09 AM

    Somewhere else I've posted my Comprehensive Refutation of Libertarianism in Fifty Words or Less:

    Libertarian1 (Austrians): Medicare will lead down the slippery slope to CommuNazism. Reply: decisively refuted by history.
    Libertarian2 (Randians): Medicare violates the essential nature of humanity, as Objectively deduced from A=A. Reply: "Objectively" my ass; or rather, your ass, which is the only source of this web of "pure reason."

  144. BadExampleMan2:09 AM

    My ex was a junior high teacher and pretty much every year she would have the same conversation with some skinny, five-foot-nothing skate punk with anarchy symbols all over his clothes: about how if he thought he was bullied now by the jocks and the delinquents, how it would actually work in an anarchy and how long he'd be likely to hang on to that expensive skateboard.

    But they were seventh graders. They figured it out and moved on.

  145. One of the classic posts.

  146. skylights2:17 AM

    With marijuana legalization seemingly inevitable in the near future, and culture increasingly a non-issue, it's economic ideologies that draw libertarians to the conservative side. Good: I didn't want those kooks on our side, and I look forward to beating them.

  147. BadExampleMan2:19 AM

    Come on, that's an overstatement. After all, she was on board with the suffocation and dismemberment of teenaged girls. Have you ever had to hang out with one of those whiny, self-centered little bitches?

  148. Jeffrey_Kramer2:20 AM

    Actually I'm probably a little more sympathetic to your position (to the extent I understand it) than many of my friends here, if for no other reason than that I imagine fifty truly independent states would have more trouble pulling together as an imperial war machine than a strong central government.

    That said, however, I'm afraid that "1913! Napster! memetics!" does not actually constitute a "real, logical, pointed argument."

  149. PulletSurprise2:39 AM


  150. Tehanu2:39 AM

    TBogg's last post ended:

    "... we call them ‘libertarians” because ‘sociopath’ is such an ugly word."

    But the real skinny on libertarians was a comment by the great Susan of Texas on this very blog, 3 years ago. (I copied the comment but alas, not the link). Here it is:

    Susan of Texas, commenting on alicublog, 5/22/10

    Personal liberty is the ideal of eternal adolescents. It's telling your mom to get out of your face when she says you have to clean your room, or calling your teacher a fascist because he won't accept your late homework. Personal liberty is all freedom and no responsibility, all choices and no drawbacks. One can't exist without the other, so libertarianism is the eternal cry of the adolescent, "Why can't you leave me alone!!!111!! After you give me a ride to the mall and some spending money."

    Libertarians want to live without any checks on their behavior, while wanting everyone else to be controlled. They want to be free to do anything they want with their property, while depending on others to implement laws and enforce them to protect that property. They want to be able to smoke pot legally but don't want others to smoke crack in front of their favorite bar or drink and drive. They want to have sex at will but don't want to pay for public health services. They want to be free of taxes and also to live in a sophisticated society that depends on taxation and central planning. They want to be free to raise their kids as they see fit and not pay for public education, while someone else keeps everyone else's kids off the streets and in school so they don't turn to crime. Their concerns about personal liberty ends at their end of their own nose and that doesn't make them principled, it just makes them immature.

  151. Tehanu2:46 AM

    Have you noticed how these bozos all claim to be the most original thinkers who ever lived? It reminds me of my own adolescence, when I was absolutely convinced that my stupid parents had never had an original thought.... and my son's adolescence, when he told me that I never had ... and my grandson is just getting to that age, so I expect to hear it from him shortly. Or shorter me: Jeez, what a tuna.

  152. "Args" is short for "argle bargle"s. I hear The Atlantic may be hiring.

  153. Tiny Hermaphrodite, Esq.3:26 AM

    Two questions, Morg: Are you aware how much of information technology and the Internet was developed?

    What do you think of disaster management? Should it be left to the states?

    Thanks in advance. Please be straight forward and avoid the IT-analogies.

  154. Even more than the logorrhea, one look at the lines starting with "I" and "my" was a clear warning.

  155. Simply bc the best POSSIBLE way to maximize human liberty over the term of history is to rely on distributed systems.

    The Civil Rights movement put the kibosh on that bullshit.

  156. That's the greatest liberty of all.

  157. It’s cute, really. He offers a very serious libertarian thoughtful argument that has never been made in such detail or with such care.

    The kid who skipped class all semester and didn't do any of the reading charges into the room on the last day and attempts to lecture his classmates – and the professor* – about his supposedly daring, original and brilliant ideas, never mind that everybody thoroughly considered them and substantively debunked them** by week three (when feeling especially generous; mostly, ten minutes was sufficient).

    (*An actual scholar, not to be confused with the Ole Perfesser.)

    (**As in the Crooked Timber and Belle Waring posts linked upthread, for starters, but acknowledging a complete refutation of one's ideology tends to crimp its style. I wish the old comments were restored, though, because the thread here on the libertarian professor interviewed by Reason who wanted to privatize highways was particularly good. The Reason thread was also hilarious, but in a different way.)

  158. There is as much accuracy in this article as there is in a Fox News story about food stamps. Congratulations.

  159. FMguru4:24 AM

    Impressive comment. Devastating. I really liked the part where you cited all those examples of the inaccuracies in the article, that really brought your point home. Roy will be feeling the sting of that for quite a while.

  160. I have to confess, Los Rancheros still cracks me up every time I play it.

  161. Your opinion that the "nominal issues" of the "Vagina Vigilantes" don't concern government intrusion indicates that you are not so bright.

  162. Yes tiny, I'm deeply aware. I got my first IP addresses from Jon Postel, hell I have been using computers since 1979.

    Prolly, you won't want to grok my point, At worst you won't be able to even imagine it. At best, you'll need it to be not quite right:

    Had the govt. not "created the Internet" meaning had it been out of the way long ago, we'd have had the Internet not just earlier, but its growth would have been far more dynamic.

    .COM as we look at it - isn't meant to be another tld, it is THE POINT of tlds. It is the THE POINT of the Internet.

    Even before that...

    The Internet was conceptually meant to make our govt smaller - meaning fewer employees to do same amount of work - it was meant to be a productivity gain by the govt - we'd need of them - . thats what it is still meant to be.

    It should offend you that our govt had the BALLS to see the world with arpa in it.

    Let me say it this way: to prove to me the govt matters in Internet creation, you'd have to show me the list of ways from the beginning the govt. focus on enabling commerce, enabling individual freedom, shrinking the govt.

    We don't fund govt. R&D so it grows, we fund it fund it to solve problems SO IT SHRINKS. Thats why we fund everything in life as humans, to get MORE for LESS.

    The first monkey with a tool, wanted to eat more ants for less work.

    The fact that a fat bloated military industrial complex spun out tang, velcro, and the Internet so slowly is proof of "fat' and "bloated" if the invented the Internet and every year gave us more for less - that'd be proof of they are worth it.

    EVERYTHING eventually leads to commerce and productivity gains . The measuring stick is... IS that the goal in the first place.

  163. mrstilton7:46 AM

    you don;t handle new info / ideas well do you?

    Well, Morgan, if you'd brought some new info / ideas, we might find out.

    But you didn’t. You're merely the latest in the series of occasional right-wingers who follow a link here and dump a mixture of specious intellectual dishonesty and carefully-memorized cant, fantasizing that they are razor-witted, unanswerable debaters.

    You do bring something new, though, I’ll admit. Most of your sort are wrong – logically wrong, empirically wrong – about almost everything. So are you, of course. But to the usual mass of wrongness you add vast volumes of pure gibberish. The typical random right-wing stray who shows up here is simply wrong. Congratulations – you’ve trumped
    them all. To a great extent you are (to borrow from Pauli) not even wrong.

  164. You should read the work I'm doing here in the thread first....

    Here's Bader Ginsburg agreeing with me on the POWER or letting states figure shit out IF they can:

    I agree, I even go further, I argue that GAY MARRIAGE PROGRESS provides great evidence that in the modern Internet age, states social opinions change far FASTER than they did in the 1960's or any time before).


    1. there is power in letting states change.

    2. states are changing faster than ever before.

    Finally, I'm a radical libertarian supporter of pro-choice. I think women ought to have total control.

    I also know the curve of technology is making fetuses viable earlier and earlier - and that is WHY as a pro choice thinker who believes in the primacy of distributed systems (they are anti-fragile), I'd rather kick the issue to the states, and calm the discussion down.

    We're going to end up with abortions being legal only before viability, and non-mental health of mother, bc once the baby can live outside mom, very few are going to support her right to terminate.

    I hope some of this sinks in.

  165. tigrismus8:23 AM

    Thanks for not dismissing without thought or analysis.

  166. I'm glad you think it sounds "carefully-memorized"

    But mrstilton, I'm one of those who other carefully memorize.

    I doubt this will work, but let me try....

    Here is my plan (that has garnered support from multiple well known progressive economists you likely read each week) to increase real consumption in the ghetto by 30%, employ 30M unemployed, seriously increase wages at the Walmarts of the world (without organizing), solve illegal immigration WHILE having open doors, and letting millions of deeply depressed people actually get paid to have their own personal DREAM JOB:

    And again mrstilton, we both know this is a fully new idea, and as such, you'll have a hard time with it. This is common on both ends of the spectrum, I'm simply pointing out, you go for the emotional reward potshot, which is fine, but the down side is when the future comes along, you aren't one of the first to see it.

  167. tigrismus8:34 AM

    Argument from imagination is fun, but nothing stopped businesses from inventing all those things earlier than the government, so why didn't they?

  168. tigrismus8:34 AM

    think about what his nuance might actually be

    Heh. Indeed.

  169. synykyl8:55 AM

    ... all those "I"s and "my"s tell you everything you need to know about Libertarianism ...

    We have a winner.

  170. smut clyde9:04 AM

    that TECH IS GOING TO SOLVE THIS whether you and I like it or not?

    Imma guessing that TECH is another word for the Rapture.

  171. Aimai9:21 AM

    Or universes entirely made of shrimp.

  172. MikeJ9:23 AM

    You laugh at unregulated traffic, but while searching for something else, I stumbled across a paper from Cato claiming:
    1)traffic signals are merely mechanical replacements for cops
    2)a cop can't restrict your freedom for no reason while you're lawfully going down the street (guess it was written pre stop & frisk)
    3)therefore, traffic signals should all be removed

    While that's a very silly conclusion to draw the author then proceeded to try to prove that traffic would actually flow better without the nanny state tyranny of traffic signals because rather than submitting their will to the State, all drivers would be more alert.

  173. synykyl9:27 AM

    The libertarians I know personally are all bright technical people who think their arguments are brilliant and undeniable just like you do. And they are all wrong, just like you are.

  174. Aimai9:29 AM

    Vagina Vigilantes was one of john wayne's greatest trans films but after passage of the Hay's Code the studio was forced to destroy all copies.

  175. Aimai9:34 AM

    There are not enough upvotes in the world for this comment.

  176. JennOfArk9:39 AM

    He was too, you boys. I installed two-way mirrors in his pad in Brentwood once, and he came to the door in a dress.

  177. Tiny Hermaphrodite, Esq.9:45 AM

    Erm, I asked TWO questions. The other one was about disaster preparedness.

    Oh, and it would help your case if you made arguments or in your lingo args instead of just long gushing strings of assertions. An occasional citation or even an elaboration would be nice, too.

    Finally, you totally missed I never asserted that the government funding was the optimum way of development for the Internet, I just implicitly made the point that the Internet as we know it (and some other related technologies) was initially developed by government funding. You made the assertion that we would have had the Internet sooner if we had the whole thing left to the private sector. So the onus is on you to provide some evidence for this.

  178. tigrismus9:53 AM

    So they innovated because of government support, monetary and otherwise, but held stuff back because they didn't want to hurt their own bottom line. Hard to see how that supports your assertion.

  179. Tiny Hermaphrodite, Esq.10:00 AM

    Pshaw, tigrismus you'll drive him away before I even get one semi-coherent answer out of him. It'll only be a matter of weeks.

  180. Is this the loon who used to go by Matoko Chan over at Balloon Juice or is libertarianism and compu geekery something that, like being hit in one one side of the brain with a bat, destroys higher order reasoning and substitutes tourettes like shouting about the internet, statistics, and all caps?

  181. You are not "doing work." The fact that you think your "args" are "work" indicates a paucity of real world experience.

  182. See little fetuses as humans? Fuck me. You don't even see grown people as humans. Women are entirely invisible to you, as are black people. You either need better tech or better glasses.

  183. reallyaimai10:13 AM

    Oh, hai, I'm back. I can finally see you guys on my computer. Its like heaven!

  184. I did answer the govt point. The telecom sector was run as a govt. supported monopoly "Ma Bell" that ensured there could be no wireline competition. That's WHY the Internet as we know it took as long as it did to come into being.

    When I first got on in 81, we had modems, we had BBSs, the first thing you did when dialing into a BBS was get a list of "links" other BBS phone numbers you could dial into but running continuous backbone with a DNS was simply too damn expensive.

    Why was it expensive? Say it with me, Ma Bell. Long distance charges killed ya. Then MCI made making those calls cheaper, and then years later we grew to meet the government funded backbone.

    Look, its just very shallow argument to say "govt was required to fund build the backbone when in fact the reason for that is govt made building it private super expensive ON PURPOSE."

    The moment it got out of govt. hands, what happened? BOOM.

    Its no different than space exploration, or health care or taxis or education, govt. goes out of its way to keep technology from just running the down field with the ball. Because fiefdoms and stalwarts and incumbents, capitalists all, want there to be less competition.

    If you hate capitalists or love capitalists the prescription is the same: MORE CAPITALISTS.


    I'm not opposed to govt. running it services (disaster preparedness) on top of commercial markets, and in return to make sure govt. gets a GOOD DEAL and HIGH QUALITY SERVICE, the government MUST do everything it can to clear the way for competition and reduce rents / cronyism. There's NOTHING government does worth it failing at that one job.


    because the Internet gave us gay rights (and will continue to deliver more civil rights faster), and the govt.. kept the internet from being built much sooner.

    Let me repeat, in order for govt to provide the very best level of service and support to its citizens, it must be always focused on bringing more capitalists, more competition to the free market.

    That's a tall order for progressives, but if they want to have the best possible chance to prove govt. works, they have to deliver those goods.

    One way is to radically alter how govt buys things.

    Another is to outsource.

    Another, my favorite is to push controls to the states and hopefully the states to the cities, so that we get tons of COMPETITION, and many different buyers in govt. with many different interests - so that MOAR capitalist suppliers are in the game.

  185. Tiny Hermaphrodite, Esq.10:21 AM

    Note, as mentioned above, I'm not trying to convince you, I'm explaining to you how other people (like me) think.
    You realize that this sentence is self-contradictory, right?
    And I'd like to see some actual arguments from you. For now you're mostly stating your opinion. An not very articulately.

  186. Jaime Oria10:24 AM

    Or possibly Church of Scientology jargon...

  187. mommadillo10:30 AM

    I really love the cheesy black-and-white newsprint flag on page 9 of the Toledo Blade newspaper in Roy's Adam Ant link, marked "Clip and display in your window" in honor of "Vietnam Veterans Recognition Day" on 4/26/81. Hey, it's the least you can do, right?

  188. NO, the govt set them up so they COULD hold stuff back.

    If you want to have good govt. you need to ensure that shit doesn't happen.

    Otherwise we end up waiting until friggin 1994 to get the Internet and start fixing the country.

    In just three years, Matt Drudge was literally tearing down journalism.

    In two years, Amazon was destroying retail.

    Dude in mid 80's, I use to have to go sit at the editor's office of local paper to read the AP wire.

    I knew it existed, I was "online" but vested interests protected their power.

    News was limited to what your local paper CHOSE to print.

    You could only buy what was in your store.

    You could be ostracized, shamed, shat on by your community and never know there was a big world out there.

    This here awesome chaos thing you are typing into... the government stood in its way.

    It did not says LETS DO EVERYTHING WE CAN to let the people tear down every part of the system and remake it themselves!

    And thats a bad bad govt. terrible really.

  189. reallyaimai10:36 AM

    These are not "args we've never heard before" except insofar as they are so incoherent that no one else has managed to type them up with the same level of randomness. To the extent that they are classically libertarian we have heard them before, and then some.

  190. reallyaimai10:38 AM

    What I love about this guy is how low he sets his own bar.

    "I'm the rebuttal, the opposition to the assertion, my job is just to explain a credible clear honest response that went unconsidered by the writer.I've done that."

    My job is to pretend to win a gold medal at the Olympics. I'm just the rebuttal, the opposition to those people who actually train and run in the Olympics, my job is just to offer a form of running which does not include running, a form of competition which is clear, honest, and has hitherto gone unconsidered. I've done that. So give me my fucking medal."

  191. reallyaimai10:43 AM

    How is a search request not the same thing as individual personal liberty?

    The computer ate my longer form comment about the "fitty states" as laboratories of freedumb but possibly that is because the computer recognized that I'm not really a libertarian. Here's my point, though its in the wrong place in the thread:

    If fifty states each have entirely different laws, suited to the desires of their own citizenry, what is to stop those states from preventing their citizens from leaving or preventing other citizens from other states from entering when those people seek the freedoms, or seek to escape from the oppression, of one state or another? Morgan thinks that if New Yorkers don't like stop and frisk they can just move to Austin, TX. Of course when people from LA tried to move away from Katrina they were shot at the borders of their own city--the term "sundown town" comes to mind for the entire country and, mysteriously, the word "Fugitive slave laws."

    Absent federal guarantees EVEN THE LIBERTY TO MOVE is not guaranteed to individuals in this country. This of course goes double and triple for the people who are not actually people in Morgans world: the female vessels surrounding the all important fetuses.

  192. whetstone10:51 AM

    OK, let's grok your l33t args for a spell.

    Commenters: Libertarians are often well-educated white men, the demographic least likely to benefit from government intervention and regulation, and who have massive blind spots about their privilege.

    You: I choose [glad you can!] to live in [a famously tolerant, somewhat expensive state-university city in] a religious state. Everyone has the same economic and physical mobility that I do, including schoolchildren who could really use a public education that's not guided by mouthbreathing theocrats.

    Commenters: Libertarianism, as expressed by many libertarians, is often indistinguishable from magical thinking.

    You: We wouldn't have needed the Civil Rights Act if we had the Internet. And we woulda had the Internet in the 1960s, if it weren't for that meddling government. Tech will make everything better, and if it doesn't, it's the fault of the government for the tech not being good enough.

    Until the technology catches up with Freedom (is there a version of Moore's Law for that), some folks are just going to have to eat it--except they won't, because they can move somewhere really nice! Like, if they're a low-income single mother, maybe they can move somewhere with excellent, freedom-maximizing early childhood education.

    Like Sweden.

    This is all perfectly logically consistent.

    A tech-literate white dude who lives in a sought-after, tolerant city among some of the best-educated people in America (courtesy of the giant state university, the tuition for which is paid for in large part by government-subsidized loans, arguably a sub rosa local subsidy) who thinks the system would be great if it were just a little more like it was in 1913, when white dudes seriously had it made?

    Can't argue with the logical consistency of that.

  193. M. Krebs10:55 AM

    Even with federal guarantees, the freedom to move is highly restricted by such annoyances as the cost of living, job availability, family obligations, etc. I would love to go shopping for my ideal place and move there, but there's no way I could afford it.

  194. coozledad10:58 AM

    Closed coffin ceremonies= efficiency!

  195. tigrismus10:59 AM

    No matter how you slice it the government didn't stand in the way, the business did. Consider also the reason they had to be "allowed" to be a monopoly was that the government had stepped in to regulate monopolies, which form naturally in a free market. How would it have worked out in a world with no government money to fund all those innovations and no regulation, with small-minded monopolists like those in the article deciding what research to do, if any, and what made it out into the world? You think the internet would have come sooner, the article makes me doubt it very strongly.

  196. Tiny Hermaphrodite, Esq.11:01 AM

    You're not keeping track of who you're arguing with. You answered my question what your case for the private sector Internet counterfactual explicitly only now. Before you linked to an (admittely interesting) article in an answer to tigrismus where the point was hidden among other things.
    You could simply have made the point in one or two sentences adressed to me.
    Furthermore our point of contention is the invention and inital development of the Internet, not wether the opening of the phone market was accelerating the developement of the Internet which, as you know, already existed then. You can of course assert that someone would have invented the internet sooner if there had not been the telecom monopoly, but this merely a hypothetical not evidence.

    Though I certainly agree that government should not grant monopolies and privatization was a good thing in the case of Ma Bell.

    Finally you seem to be under the misapprehension were all some sort of communists who totally reject the market and want to run a planned economy. Most of us are mixed economy guys.

    As for disaster preparedness your position is actually to left of the current GOP position.

  197. reallyaimai11:11 AM

    Libertarianism exists only on the horizon, it is always receding ahead of us, just outside our grasp. It is not a lived experience so much as it is a dream we pursue.