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Reason magazine and racism

Last week, Pando.com's Mark Ames posted an article on the efforts of the GOP to recruit in Silicon Valley using libertarianism as a wedge and the history of libertarian links, particularly through Reason magazine, to racism. Reason responded, calling Ames a "conspiracy theorist". Ames, who has a history of digging into the seedy history of libertarianism, has responded by posting a copy of Reason's holocaust denial and revisionist history issue, along with profiles of its contributors and their involvement with Reason and late 20th century libertarianism.
posted by Pope Guilty on Jul 25, 2014 - 117 comments

My name is Galt -- I'm a cop.

Years ago, a central banker killed my partner..... [more inside]
posted by Iris Gambol on Apr 5, 2014 - 82 comments

"You can't 3-D-print a highway"

Stanford lecturer and genetics startup co-founder Balaji Srinivasan delivered a talk entitled "Silicon Valley's Ultimate Exit", at the Y Combinator startup school on Saturday. The provocative talk, described as "a fantasy of seceding from the U.S." with "undertones of class hostility as well as simple naïveté", is just the latest escalation of the techno-utopian and often anti-government rhetoric from Silicon Valley's elite class (previously: 1, 2, 3).
posted by tonycpsu on Oct 22, 2013 - 123 comments

Meeting Real Live Poor People

Jim Leff: How I Outgrew Libertarianism
posted by blue_beetle on Sep 5, 2013 - 92 comments

What makes a hero?

The Avenging Page (In Excelsis Ditko) is an exhaustive essay on the recent self-published comics of legendary artist and writer Steve Ditko.
posted by Charlemagne In Sweatpants on Jul 24, 2013 - 23 comments

The Case Against The Confederacy

Why “Libertarian” Defenses of the Confederacy and “States’ Rights” are Incoherent
There is a strain of libertarian contrarianism that holds that the Confederate States of America were within their “rights” to secede from the Union. Such contrarianism on this particular topic is detrimental to the larger cause of liberty because the logic of this argument relies upon relinquishing individual rights to the whim of the state. Indeed, as there is no legal or moral justification for supporting the Confederacy in the Civil War, it is impossible that there could be a libertarian one.
[more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns on Jul 21, 2013 - 349 comments

China's Black Market City

Chen Mingyuan has lived here all his life, but he still gets lost every time he drives into Wenzhou. “All the roads in this town were built by businessmen, so none of them make any sense,” Chen says as we back out of what we just discovered is a one-way street. For the last 30 years, private citizens in this southeastern China metropolis have largely taken over one of the least questioned prerogatives of governments the world over: infrastructure. Is Wenzhou, the richest city in China's richest province, a libertarian paradise?
posted by shivohum on Jul 20, 2013 - 13 comments

Libertarianism's sordid relationship with Pinochet.

“I have not been able to find a single person even in much maligned Chile who did not agree that personal freedom was much greater under Pinochet than it had been under Allende.” Political Scientist Corey Robin documents the connection between libertarian theorist Friedrich von Hayek and Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet. According to Robin, Hayek met Pinochet "came away from Chile convinced that an international propaganda campaign had been unfairly waged against the Pinochet regime (and made explicit comparison to the campaign being waged against South Africa’s apartheid regime). He set about to counter that campaign." Libertarians have accused Robin of "smearing" Hayek. [more inside]
posted by MisantropicPainforest on Jun 27, 2013 - 234 comments

“We were for the Contras in Nicaragua; wary of affirmative action,”

Matt Welch, Reason: The Death of Contrarianism
Klein, then at The American Prospect, a progressive D.C. opinion magazine founded in 1990, wanted Peters, founder (in 1969) of The Washington Monthly, to answer for the way neoliberalism had degenerated into lefty-on-lefty contrarianism. “What has happened, at least to some younger folks like me,” Klein said, “is that at times this appears to have become not an honest critique, but a positioning device. The idea that it’s not about the quality of the argument, but the display: You show honesty by attacking Democrats, you show independence by attacking liberals. At times I think that has been a damaging impulse on our side.”
[more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns on Jun 22, 2013 - 30 comments

The Bacon-Wrapped Economy

The Bacon-Wrapped Economy, or how the rise of a new elite of wealthy, predominantly twentysomething, software engineers and startup founders is changing the San Francisco Bay Area's economy and culture. [more inside]
posted by acb on Mar 24, 2013 - 134 comments

Ayn Rand's Private Access Show

Ayn Rand's Private Access Show (SLYT)
posted by shivohum on Mar 16, 2013 - 10 comments

You should read this review. It's good for you.

Justifying Coercive Paternalism - autonomy is "not valuable enough to offset what we lose by leaving people to their own autonomous choices"
posted by Gyan on Feb 24, 2013 - 196 comments

Travis Shrugged

Travis Shrugged: The creepy, dangerous ideology behind Silicon Valley’s "Cult of Disruption"
posted by AceRock on Oct 25, 2012 - 55 comments

American-Owned Private City in Honduras Greenlighted

“Our goal is to be the most economically free entity on Earth.” The Honduran government has agreed to allow an American investment group build a private city, with its own laws, government, and taxation structure, from scratch. While some laud the project as a "beacon of job creation and investment," others decry it as an assault on human rights and democracy. One murder has already been attributed to the political tensions related to the plans for the private city.
posted by Rykey on Sep 24, 2012 - 165 comments

The Troubling Message of Beasts of the Southern Wild

How the individualist, rights-based message in Beasts of the Southern Wild reflects the society America is today "While the film centers on Hushpuppy’s struggle to survive the degradation that surrounds her — primarily through imagination and her incipient art — this "You’ve got to fight for your right to party" ethos is also a central theme. Viewers are asked to interpret a lack of work discipline, schooling, or steady institution building of any kind — the primary building blocks of any civilization — as the height of liberation. “Choice,” even the choice to live in squalor, is raised to the level of a categorical imperative. There is no inkling of the economic and social history of the region that had limited these “choices.” We are left with a libertarian sandbox, with a rights-based life philosophy gone rancid... In his new book The Age of Fracture, Princeton historian Daniel Rodgers suggests that post-World War II American history has seen a “disaggregation of the social,” where the broad social contract that had brought more and more Americans into the domain of full economic and political citizenship has dramatically shrunk. We are left with smaller and smaller visions of “community,” often being reduced to the level of a single "rights-holding self." In a sad way, the characters in the Bathtub are an artistic reflection of this fragmented world."
posted by bookman117 on Aug 10, 2012 - 34 comments

Posting from work

Let it Bleed: Libertarianism and the Workplace from Crooked Timber.
posted by klangklangston on Jul 2, 2012 - 184 comments

on the flexibility of ideals

In October 2010, William Niskanen, the 78-year-old economist and minority shareholder in the Cato Institute, died. The Koch Brothers, the liberal boogeymen who also finance most of the Cato Institute's operations, are now seeking control over Niskanen's shares and have sued the remaining shareholder and founder of the institute, Ed Crane III, in order to cement their control over the institute's future. [more inside]
posted by anewnadir on Mar 6, 2012 - 71 comments

"MY WAVE!"

LearnLiberty: a libertarian Khan Academy. [more inside]
posted by edguardo on Feb 13, 2012 - 183 comments

The State of White America

In a lecture entitled The State of White America Charles Murray, a W. H. Brady Scholar of the American Enterprise Institute and co-author of the controversial The Bell Curve, details the thesis of his upcoming book Coming Apart: Over the last half century, the United States has developed a new lower class and a new upper class that are different in kind from anything America has ever known. The second contention of the book is that the divergence of America into these separate classes, if it continues, will end what has made America America. [more inside]
posted by ob1quixote on Apr 12, 2011 - 76 comments

The Trouble With The View From Above

The Trouble With The View From Above. James C. Scott at Cato Unbound has an interesting essay on what we gain - and what we lose - when we trade localized, vernacular categories for the uniform, official categories of a state. His ideas are fleshed out more in his book, Seeing Like A State. Economist Donald Boudreax responds. Brad DeLong and Timothy Lee have forthcoming responses.
posted by Sticherbeast on Sep 13, 2010 - 22 comments

"Someone, somewhere, really likes setting things up."

Who are they? Jenny Turner looks inside the Institute of Ideas, one of Britain's strangest think tanks, composed largely of entryist Trotskyites turned radical libertarians.
posted by WPW on Jul 2, 2010 - 40 comments

9 out of 10 Ain't Bad

Rand Paul, third son of 2008 Presidential candidate Ron Paul and winner of the Kentucky Republican Party Senate primary this week, has found his general election campaigned mired over a controversy about his libertarian ideology. [more inside]
posted by l33tpolicywonk on May 21, 2010 - 422 comments

Grover, Grover, gimme your ice cream.

"What is so striking, and serves as the clearest mark of Rand’s lasting influence, is the language of moral absolutism applied by the right to these questions. Conservatives define the see-sawing of the federal tax-and-transfer system between slightly redistributive and very slightly redistributive as a culture war over capitalism, or a final battle to save the free enterprise system from the hoard of free-riders." John Chait on the debt modern conservatism owes to Ayn Rand. [more inside]
posted by OmieWise on Sep 15, 2009 - 88 comments

All the King's Men

Monarchy vs. Democracy: "Was the change from monarchy to democracy a step backwards? In practical terms, there is no question: democracy has had tremendously bad effects compared to monarchy." [more inside]
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing on Jun 26, 2009 - 110 comments

Once Rapture starts leaking, the old girl's never gonna stop.

The Seasteading Institute (previously) is the brain-child of former Google engineer Patri Friedman , and seeks to set up independent governments in international waters. In April 2009, the institute received $500,000 of seed funding from PayPal founder Peter Thiel. After reading it's revised manifesto, Brad Reed (of Sadly, No) remains unimpressed. [more inside]
posted by The Whelk on May 31, 2009 - 98 comments

China Miéville says libertarianism's all at sea

Remember the Freedom Ship? (Previously). Well, it's still no nearer reality. China Miéville reckons it's due to the fact that it's a perfect example of the libertarian fantasy. Some libertarians take issue with his portrayal of the movement. Meanwhile the serious seasteaders think he must be talking about someone else. Maybe one of these guys?
posted by Jakey on Oct 29, 2007 - 77 comments

Just Say No .. to John Stuart Mill

"An open society must be prepared to listen to those who offer a critique of its conventional wisdom—and our conventional wisdom about drugs and addiction should be no exception."
posted by daksya on Sep 22, 2007 - 50 comments

Live Free or Die?

The Tax Man Cometh:
"They believe, in the face of all evidence to the contrary, that their citizen's understanding of the written law should, and in some Platonic sense does, trump the realities of dealing with the government. This makes them uniquely American rebels--more true, they maintain, to the nation's core values than those of us who follow the pragmatic advice . . . "You mess with that shit, you are going to jail."
Brian Doherty analyzes the tax resistance movement (from 2004). Meanwhile, another ugly confrontation is brewing in New Hampshire, and violence is in the air. Mr. Brown, of course, has his views.
posted by fourcheesemac on Jan 21, 2007 - 112 comments

Beautiful liberty.

The Philosophy of Liberty. Briefly cited here, this simple yet powerful Flash animation is one of the most elegant, expressive, and dramatic political statements I have ever seen.
posted by By The Grace of God on Aug 28, 2006 - 87 comments

Loompanics R.I.P.

America's craziest bookstore has gone out of business. Loompanics, a libertarian publisher in Washington State, has gone out of business. Some blame the changed political climate after 9/11. Others blame Amazon.com and the big bookstore chains. No matter what the cause might be, I will miss them. What will I do if I decide I want to try to cook some crank? And if that doesn't succeed in paying the bills, what if I need to go dumpster diving for my dinner? And if get truly desperate, what if I decide to rip off a drug dealer instead? I'm glad that Amok is still with us.
posted by jason's_planet on Jun 30, 2006 - 23 comments

Monbiot rants

"They call themselves libertarians; I think they're antisocial bastards". George Monbiot goes on a considered rant against individualistic road users and groups.
posted by wilful on Dec 20, 2005 - 48 comments

LNSGP

The Nazis are back and this time they're green! I can't seem to tell if it's real or not... which is kind of worrying.[Via memepool]
posted by knapah on Aug 1, 2003 - 19 comments

Working against evolution?

In an article called "The Sociobiological Conceit", Gene Callahan says darwinism is logically flawed and inherently self-contradictory: "if moral ideas are simply an 'illusion' fostered on us by our genes then so are all of our other ideas – including the ideas of sociobiology!". Callahan, fyi, belongs to the ultra-libertarian circles of the Mises Institute and LewRockwell. Would any of the evolutionists among us care to politely refute him?
posted by 111 on Feb 7, 2003 - 20 comments

The Free State Project

The Free State Project is a plan in which 20,000 or more liberty-oriented people will move to a single state of the U.S. to secure there a free society. We will accomplish this by first reforming state law, opting out of federal mandates, and finally negotiating directly with the federal government for appropriate political autonomy. We will be a community of freedom-loving individuals and families, and create a shining example of liberty for the rest of the nation and the world.
posted by BirdD0g on Oct 16, 2002 - 68 comments

Do you have too much Freedom?

Do you have too much Freedom?
Might be interesting to all except for the ideology sales pitch at the end. Here is where the warning that it is a Harry Browne/Libertarian penned article goes. George Bush is a Communitarian?
posted by thirteen on Feb 28, 2001 - 20 comments

Critiques Of Libertarianism is a good read. The kind of concerns raised on this light-hearted site is what keeps me off of the Libertarian party.
posted by tdecius on Nov 6, 1999 - 0 comments

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