December 14, 2012

What’s in a name?

Camp of the Saints draws the distinction between small “l” libertarians and Libertarians, particularly as it relates to the latter’s aversion to “right to work” laws. Writes Bob Belvedere, of Libertarians:

The Ideologue demands perfection because of the fragile nature of all ideas created away from Real Life. The trouble is: nothing in Life is perfect. Perfection can only ever be an aspiration for Human Beings.

Mr. Tuccille and those who agree with him make a fatal error when they enslave themselves to ideas rather than their own experience and, more importantly, the experience of those who have come before us.

In their pursuit of perfection, the Ideologues reject Right Reason, Prudence, Morality, and Tradition and set themselves up for the inevitable dissatisfaction and disappointment and depression [often sparking a descent into Nihilism]. As long as those results are restricted to the individuals who believe in the Ideology, that is fine. It is when they impose their Will To Power on others that they cause misery and death.

Ironically, it’s often those of us among the classical liberal/constitutional conservative ranks who today are accused of demanding “purity” — that we are ideologues who fail to understand nuance and allow our political naivete to cloud our better judgment — and yet we are nothing of the sort:  there is a difference between idealists and ideologues, with the former devoted to principles while the latter are devoted to scripted dogma, almost religious in their adherence.  “Progressives” are ideologues.  Capital l “Libertarians” are often ideologues.  Whereas most in the contemporary TEA Party movement are not ideologues so much as traditionalists.

Mine own view is this: Small l libertarians / minarchists are very closely associated with classical liberalism, itself these days more often referred to as “constitutional conservatism” — the New Left having appropriated “liberal” for its own perverse illiberalism. The lie of contemporary liberalism has given rise to these attempts to recalibrate labeling. And that recalibration, as I’ve argued, keeps moving “conservative” closer to JFK Democrat.

When I first started blogging, I was called conservative or right wing by leftists even when I thought myself liberal with a strong libertarian streak. I was shocked to be labeled conservative, a stance I’d always associated less with Burke than with, say, Pat Buchanan.  In grappling with where I was on the contemporary (at the time) political spectrum, I came to understand myself to be a classical liberal.  And to recognize that modern liberalism was nothing but Marxism in the guise of liberalism.

So here we are: now I’m not only not the liberal I thought I was, according to the left (and many on the right), but I’m a far right-wing fringe Hobbity extremist Visigoth.

Who knew?

Posted by Jeff G. @ 10:31am
79 comments | Trackback

Comments (79)

  1. And you look damn fine in that far right-wing fringe Hobbity extremist Visigothy finery!

  2. Having just read it, that whole post over at Bob’s is well worth a look.

  3. Personally, I prefer “small-mouthed anarchist”, as opposed to the big-mouth kind.

    We don’t say much, but you better pay attention to what we do say. Like, “Stop right there. Put your hands on top of your head.”

  4. Regardless of the particular ideology, the great sin is thinking that you have it all figured out and that you model of society is the fundamentally and absolutely correct one, so that when reality butts up agaiinst your model you reject reality in favor of your model. This is just as true of illiberal utopian statists as Libertarians.

  5. “The default position of federal labor law is that if a union gains a simple majority of votes cast in a workplace (50 percent plus one), it is authorized as the exclusive bargaining representative for all workers in that bargaining unit, including those who voted against the union. “

    Capital L libertarians, who make this fundamental error – mistaking the force of Federal law, as embodied in the NLRA, for freedom of contract – are capital I idiots.

    Also note that, while the employer may be bound to recognize the legitimacy of the union, the law in no way binds any individual worker to do likewise. Else there would be no need for ‘closed shop’ legislation.

  6. Well said, Charles.

  7. - Yet another school mass shooting in Sandy Hook Conn. at a K1 -K8 school. 27 dead including 18 children, with three others wounded.

    - One gunman is deceased, the 20 year old son of one of the kindergarden teachers at the school, She is also deceased. Possible second shooter in custody.

  8. Seems the demons are being released.

  9. I can hardly wait for the cries for banning guns again.

  10. I’m not sure the second guy was involved. Sounds like a family thing; his dad was shot at home and his mother was the teacher in the class that was massacred.

  11. In these situations, I always prefer that the gunman kill himself for killing anyone else.

  12. Yesterday a guy in China attacked school kids with a knife, wounding 22.

  13. - *for* works to cranky, if it has to be. At least it saves the tax payer having to dole out to put the nut cases away.

  14. And there it is, just as night follows day.

    Obazma: “As a country, we have been through this too many times. Whether it is an elementary school in Newtown, or a shopping mall in Oregon, or a temple in Wisconsin, or a movie theater in Aurora, or a street corner in Chicago, these neighborhoods are our neighborhoods and these children are our children. And we’re going to have to come together and take meaningful action to prevent more tragedies like this, regardless of the politics.”

  15. Sorry Obama, but my children our not our children. The only person who can say that is my wife.

  16. There was a guy a few years ago who drove his truck onto a playground and ran over a bunch of kids. I think we need to outlaw trucks.

  17. So.

    Some liberals are now claiming even more loudly that Something Must Be Done About Guns, despite the fact that they know good and well that anyone with a pair of Glock pistols, some shooting practice and a spare magazine or two could easily put away 20 or more people.

    So, they want to confiscate every semiautomatic weapon?

    As a parent, I can’t imagine what the parents of the dead and wounded are going through. It’s deeply, horribly frightening to me that something like that could happen to my kids. And yet: I don’t feel compelled to pass any laws just now.

    It’s one of those things that needs thinking before doing, I say.

  18. What about those dudes who ran airplanes into skyscrapers? Seems like quite a few people died in the first fraction of a second.

  19. The London bombings on 7/7 killed 55 people, using chipati flour and hydrogen peroxide. Strangely, there were no calls for a ban on Indian bread products.

  20. Such a ban would have been racist, SW.

  21. What about those dudes who ran airplanes into skyscrapers?

    Good point. We need to ban airplanes!

    And probably dudes, as well. Just be extra safe.

  22. I said on twitter many times – our schools need armed guards. ESPECIALLY the elementary schools. Kindergarten teachers couldn’t squash a bug if their lives depended on it. We set up these giant pods full of defenseless women and children, like fish in a barrel, with no fucking protection, and then seem flabbergasted by this.

    It is amazing to me that it hasn’t happened sooner. They need guards. They are not warriors. I know too many of these kinder teachers – strapping guns on them wouldn’t help. (Sort of in response to Pablo on twitter – sorry for the rant but i have 3 kids in elem. school and I’m freaked out like a hen surrounded by snakes )

  23. I blame video games.

  24. It seems to me the more significant call (in contradistinction to the mewling “ban on this or that”) is the call to bend to Obazma’s rigid ontology. “This is the world I speak,” says Obazma, “and you will have no other worlds before mine.”

  25. Ezra Klein commits himself to the usual disregard of facts.

    Klein “fact”: did you know that “In Israel and Switzerland, for example, a license to possess guns is available on demand to every law-abiding adult”? To be fair, Klein is quoting Cato, but Cato in this case is wrong.

    When I was recently in Israel, people that I worked with there told me that guns were much, much less easy to obtain than they were in the US. Possibly many adults are in possession of a firearm because every single adult has to serve in the military. In fact, here are the requirements for firearm ownership in Israel:

    The Israel Dept. of the Interior makes notification to the general public the requirements necessary for the obtaining of a permit to possess a firearm:

    1. Applicant must be a permanent resident of Israel for 3 consecutive years prior to making application for a firearms permit.

    2. Applicant must be 21 years of age.

    3. The permit request must be for personal use, not to engage in the business of firearms sales.

    4. Applicant must fall into one of the following categories:

    a. Part-time reservist (volunteer) for 3 years- may own 1 handgun
    b. Such a reservist (volunteer) is a member of a gun club – may own 1 rifle
    c. Professional, licensed public transportation driver, transporting a minimum of 5 passengers – may own 1 handgun
    d. Licensed animal control officer- may own 2 hunting rifles, *not* full automatic weapons, or semi-automatic weapons with a limited capacity magazine.
    e. Full-time dealer of jewelry or large sums of cash or valuables – may own 1 handgun

    West Bank and Gaza Strip Settlers:

    1. A resident in a militarily strategic buffer zone, essential to the security of the State of Israel – may own 1 handgun

    2. A business owner in these geographic areas – may own 1 handgun

    Veterans:

    1. Veterans of the Regular Army honorably discharged with the rank of non-commissioned officer, and veterans of the Reserve Army with the rank of regimental commander- may own 1 handgun

    2. Retired law enforcement officers with the rank of sergeant – may own 1 handgun

    3. Retired prison guards with the rank of squadron commander- may own 1 handgun

    Individuals:

    Upon presenting documentation that one is about to receive a souvenir, a prize, an inheritance, or an award of appreciation from the Israel military.

    Ezra Klein continues to be a clueless dick.

  26. Missfixit, I can relate. I hate hate hate the idea of sending kids to what is basically a prison setting,with razor wire, armed guards, and checkpoints, but Damn!

  27. How many children were killed in car/bus/pedestrian accidents going to and from school last year?

    Perspective people, it is a horrible thing, sure, but life goes on.

  28. I would feel safer sending them to school knowing there was razor wire and some soldiers at the gate – rather than this bullshit we just witnessed today. Holy fuck I am devastated

  29. If liberals were at all consistent, the narrative would be either innocent gun owners fear backlash from anti-gun zealots or, the next time a jihadi wannabe misbehaves, Muslims need to be rounded up for mass deportation.

  30. Look for loud calls for even more gun free zones to provide a greater illusion of security.

  31. I can’t imagine what the parents of the dead and wounded are going through. It’s deeply, horribly frightening to me that something like that could happen to my kids. And yet: I don’t feel compelled to pass any laws just now.

    I can think of one Slart. Teachers who so choose ought to have the right to carry in the class room.

    Just like a pilot on an airplane.

  32. Slap another coat of fresh paint on that termite riddled sucker. It’ll look as good as new.

  33. I would feel safer sending them to school knowing there was razor wire and some soldiers at the gate…

    Or maybe the TSA and metal detectors?

    Be careful what you wish for…

  34. How many children were killed in car/bus/pedestrian accidents going to and from school last year?

    Perspective people, it is a horrible thing, sure, but life goes on.

    Thing is, this was deliberate, no chance accident.

    Remember when work place shootings were the rage? Sooo 1990′s. Columbine upped the anti for the monsters seeking infamy, and now they’re at kindergartners. We aren’t talking about random tragedies anymore, but an escalating trend of mass shootings (and no, I’m not interested in talking new gun laws). We gotta deal with that, and we can’t let schools be targets.

  35. And we’re going to have to come together and take meaningful action to prevent more tragedies like this, regardless of the politics.

    And we can start that by dividing the country into races and classes and pitting them against each other.

    Shut up, you fuck.

  36. Or maybe the TSA and metal detectors?

    Be careful what you wish for…

    no screw that. Israel has armed guards to protect all of its’ schools from this type of shit. Even the fucking airport in Paris has armed soldiers patrolling the whole place – get real. We’re talking about huge shooting ranges full of babies and women with no defenses. They need protection.

  37. Is it an escalating trend? Or are there just more people and you hear about it more?

    Your children are much more likely to die in a traffic accident or drown than be killed at school. Turning what are already indoctrination centers into armed prisons doesn’t seem like a good idea to me.

  38. well i would homeschool if I could. But I have to work. So if I absolutely must send my children to these indoctrination camps, I want them to have a guard at the gate so they aren’t magnets for every lunatic with a gun. Thanks.

  39. I think it’s definitely escalating.

    And we have airbags in cars and fences around the pool.

    And I agree sending kids to armed prisons is horrible to contemplate.

  40. I’m tired of snarly libs blubbering on teevee (I’m lookin’ at you Obama) and asking for our prayers. Fuck that noise. We pray for your sorry asses all the time, you cocksucker. Too bad we’re all a bunch of bitter-clingers when you aren’t asking us to pray for you on your timeline. You know, the convenient soundbyte for the evening news cycle.

    Missfixit, it is scary indeed to have little ones. There are almost 370 Million people in our big big country. Bad shit will happen and it doesn’t help to be scared of everything, although it is a natural response.

    In the 1930′s a crazy farmer with a grudge wired a school in Bath (PA or NY?) with explosives and blew the place to smithereens and also blew up his car with him in it as people were running for safety, thus killing many more who might have escaped. This isn’t anything new. It is shocking and it involves children.

    We need not let our emotions get the better of us.

  41. The kids weren’t the target, the shooter was after his mom, who just happened to be a school teacher. I think we should do something about mothers who raise such fucked up kids.

    Maybe license them or something. For sure they need to be registered and taxed.

  42. except now it’s “the thing to do” amongst the people clinging to the edges of sanity.
    I promise that right now, there is another lunatic watching the TV, thinking about doing this to another school. And he’ll be successful. Because we don’t protect our schools.

    We can talk about this again after the next shooting. I’m reasonably sure that it won’t be my kids, seeing as how there are 300 million ppl in this country.

  43. the shooter killed every one of those kindergartners. He wasn’t “just aiming at his mom”

  44. The mother is dead, your snark is ugly.

  45. The mother was killed in her home, I thought. There was no reason to kill those children.

    I will add, though, that this has happened before. An older man gained access to a kindergarten classroom in a school that had security measures (metal detectors, security cameras, buzzer access, &c) and slaughtered most of the children and their teacher with a machete and, I believe, a handgun.

    It was on an episode of “I Survived” and told from the pov of the pricipal who was gravely wounded yet survived.

  46. We’re talking about huge shooting ranges full of babies and women with no defenses. They need protection.

    The place to start is to stop denying to them the right to self-defense, rather than to continue to perpetuate the notion that our protection is the responsibility of another.

    We already dislike the legal/administrative behemoth that’s been erected on our behalf. Let’s not rush to add more to the Sicherheitsstaat that’s been created in the last dozen years.

  47. I implore you all, don’t be drawn into a gun debate. The left WANTS this incident to be tied to guns, and the conversation to center on that.

    This is about cultural decay, not weapon technology.

  48. ,i>This is about cultural decay, not weapon technology.

    Exactly. Hubs and I got into a bit of a disagreement this morning about violent video games and Kids Today. I made your point about it being the culture, not the technology.

  49. stupid html

  50. Ok, I see according to ABC that the mom was killed at the school and that sonny was autistic, according to the neighbors.

    Teevee is fueling the fires of a lot of the latent nuts out there by covering this wall-to-wall, imho.

  51. Leigh, it is odd though (to speak up for your husband), cigarets can’t be advertized on TV, but every 12 year old in America has slaughtered countless people in glorious detail to win a video game on TV (and no, I am not interested in new video game laws).

  52. We need to refamiliarize ourselves wit the concept of Damnatio memoriae.

  53. This is about cultural decay, not weapon technology.

    No. This is about a fucking lunatic. Mentally defective. Broken.

    It is an abberation and we need to say a prayer for those affected and go on with life.

    You don’t shape your society and culture around statistical anomalies.

  54. That would certainly help Ernst.

  55. Heh, Lee. I will pass on your sentiments. ; )

  56. Isn’t shaping society and culture around statistical anomalies the kind of thing that decadent cultures do?

  57. Why, yes it is. I think you’re on to something there, Ernst.

  58. Autistic kid from Connecticut kills parents and several kids and then himself.

    A couple of weeks ago a kid claiming to have Asperger’s traveled from (IIRC) Connecticut to Casper, Wyoming where he killed his parents and then himself.

    The kid who went to Wyoming shot his college professor dad in the head with a bow and arrow, then stabbed him to death when he got up and fought back (thus givin his students time to flee the room). His mother he’d apparently stabbed to death.

    Obviously we need to ban archery equipment and knives.

    Or autistic people…? No — they might be a useful voting demographic, mustn’t alienate them.

  59. McG! Can you get into and edit the page source, thus perhaps fixing the italics bollix in the newer thread?

  60. McG! Can you get into and edit the page source, thus perhaps fixing the italics bollix in the newer thread?

    I’ll see what I can do.

  61. It’s already fixed. Thanks anyhow.

  62. Turns out I wasn’t needed. Somebody else got there first.

  63. So small “l” libertarians are just big “l” Libertarians, except when they don’t feel like it. In that case, they can just abandon Libertarian principles with their “get out of Libertarian” free card.

    The author seems to see the time to do this as when the “messy realities of life” show that a Libertarian approach would fail. In other words –

    Pragmatism!

    What a tool.

  64. Obviously you didn’t read Bob’s post.

    Fucking idiot.

  65. I love how you guys always say, “You didn’t read…” but you rarely point out where I’ve got it wrong.

    (golf clap)

  66. If you clicked Jeff’s link to Camp of the Saints, read Bob’s post, and all you came away with is “small “l” libertarians are just big “l” Libertarians, except when they don’t feel like it. In that case, they can just abandon Libertarian principles with their “get out of Libertarian” free card,” then I can only conclude that, while you may have read the words, you failed to comprehend the meaning.

    I stand by my assessment. You’re a fucking idiot.

  67. Libertarian is a political party, libertarian is a political philosophy, they aren’t always the same. Kind of like how Progressives aren’t progressive, Liberals aren’t liberal, and Republicans aren’t very republican.

  68. Slipshod was hoping he could poop in this thread and not be noticed because it was getting stale.

  69. I love how you guys always say, “You didn’t read…” but you rarely point out where I’ve got it wrong.

    I love it how slipperyslope comes into the middle of the room, takes a dump * on the carpet and then expectantly looks around waiting for his kibble.

    [rolling up newspaper] *SWAT* (on the nose)

    * that would be a metaphor for dropping an unsupported assertion like

    So small “l” libertarians are just big “l” Libertarians, except when they don’t feel like it. In that case, they can just abandon Libertarian principles with their “get out of Libertarian” free card.

    into the middle of a comment thread, and then demanding that others “point out where [you've] got it wrong.”

  70. As a rule, slippy gets it wrong starting when he decides to fire up his computer, and ending when…

    Well, he’ll stop getting it wrong when he takes his dirt nap someday.

  71. Pingback: Ignore The Ideologues « The Camp Of The Saints

  72. Thank you all [except slipperydope] for your comments.

  73. Libertarian is a political party, libertarian is a political philosophy, they aren’t always the same. Kind of like how Progressives aren’t progressive, Liberals aren’t liberal, and Republicans aren’t very republican.

    Perhaps I should have made clear in my post that I was not dealing with political parties.

    When I refer to one of the ideological groups, I always capitalize their names because they are a proper group. Whereas, when it comes to, say, conservatives, I do not do so because as Russell Kirk wrote:

    …For there exists no Model Conservative, and conservatism is the negation of ideology: it is a state of mind, a type of character, a way of looking at the civil social order.

    The attitude we call conservatism is sustained by a body of sentiments, rather than by a system of ideological dogmata. It is almost true that a conservative may be defined as a person who thinks himself such. The conservative movement or body of opinion can accommodate a considerable diversity of views on a good many subjects, there being no Test Act or Thirty-Nine Articles of the conservative creed.

    With Ideologues there is always a test. One must join the cult and agree to adhere to and promote the particular system of ideas.

    BTW: Tis very true ‘Republicans aren’t very republican’.

  74. Shorter Bob: Many of the people who call themselves libertarians don’t know what the eff they’re talking about and should just call themselves conservatives – which can’t be defined.

  75. shorter slippey – [insert clue here]

  76. Quite the opposite: Many Libertarians know exactly what they’re talking about —which is why they’re ideologues and not idealists.

    Also, you don’t know who your argument is with.

  77. Wow, you really are a maroon, slipperycantcope.

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