Much like arguing with Religionists, Libertarians don't seem to need to have facts. Simple ideas and rhetoric is all that you need. I've hammered on the free capitalism arguments they make. If you take it to it's end, either you have too much government or two little and we never have the right mix to show where capitalism works. We are looking for friggin Goldilocks on all issues only we can't ever find the "just right" example of Libertarianism working. I have a Facebook friend whom I like. But he has 1800 FB friends and it's a Libertarian Hive Mind on his page. He posted a question today. There were 15 answers of bullshit. One of the persons had posted three times. I post the likely answer to his question, and the circle of denial starts all over again.
If you are a Libertarian, you should ask yourself this question. Am I arguing based on historical evidence, or wish thinking? If you are an Atheist you undoubtedly are choosing to live based on reality. The following has been altered to the relevant posts, but is an example of being dishonest with one's self. Consistently, this is what I run into with Libertarians. Facts... don't need those, I have ideology! It's as much a douche move as denying science and accepting religion.
How much reading about the government have you been doing since you were 13?
Why do you think government spending is out of control? Welfare? Pre-school funding? No, the military budget is ridiculous and much of it unnecessary. For example why do we need to spend many times over on the military (not including the cost of the wars) compared to our nearest competitor China, when they're an authoritarian state in a semi-stable region. We've got a very stable continent and we're supposedly a democratic republic.
And WHICH government officials are you mad at? Congress? Understaffed regulators? Social workers? Some government officials do great jobs and are underpaid actually (when they could be in the private sector making better money). Most politicians are terrible due to the nature of the system and those who aren't terrible are generally sidelined.
I've basically heard Libertarians argue that there should be no social safety net. I grew up in poverty and had government health care and school lunches and look at me now, I'm studying abroad in Japan, and attend one of the most elite universities in the country and can chat on a broad range of subjects. Now I know most people don't expect that from someone from the "ghetto" but I would be probably working full-time and going to college part time at state, if it were not for government help and a social safety net. Otherwise its going to be like feudal Europe all over again, where pretty much where you were born is where you stay no matter how intelligent you are or how hard you work.
hell, I'm a Libertarian and I can't shut up about military spending.
The main reason they hate us abroad is not for our "freedoms" but because we constantly meddle in their countries. We don't need garrisons in the majority of the world's countries to be safe. We'll be safrer when we stop pissing them off.
GOPers always say we need to be the most powerful country. I don't care if we're "#1" on the list of "most powerful countries." The only list I care about being #1 on is "most free countries."
Jason, you may be hitting on a point that has been getting lost in my frustration. The ole smörgåsbord of politics where I'll take this from your policies, and that from you, etc. Thanks for the reminder so that I don't throw on blinders.
One issue between the two that can get murky between social and economic libertarianism is in Unionizing. I've been a member of three unions, two of them as tradesmen. So I support the right to organize. The other position would be Right to Work States so that anyone can work anywhere and it's a choice whether or not to join the union. Consistently right to work states have lower wages. But it's not uncommon to have less unemployment. In reality, Right to Work is simply union busting. So who do you support socially and economically? Socially workers under unions are safer due to training and feeling comfortable in saying no due to safety. Economically it's a bit of a push argument. Who's rights matter, the unionized worker, the company, or the guy who just wants a job?
His most important point is that money is not real. Yet somehow we've decided it's a great idea to stop feeding real food to real people and cease educating real children in order to demonstrate fealty to an abstract concept.
"Civilizations which become obsessed by sustaining unsustainable debt-loads have forgotten the basic nature of money. Money is not real. It is a conscious agreement on measuring abstract value. Unhealthy societies often become mesmerized by money and treat it as if it were something concrete. The effect is to destroy the currency’s practical value."
I think many people actually never come to realize that money isn't *real*. You can't eat money, its just an implicit social agreement.
It has its uses but absolute loyalty to the concept when it's going to destroy your country, doesn't make sense.
We have real factories, real supplies, labor, knowledge, real food and yet we seem to be so hopelessly stuck in the conventional ways of thinking that if hyperinflation or deflation or the recession continues, we can't seem to apply knowledge that our ancestors would have fawned over with incredible resources in our hands as well.
I'm a Libertarian.
Yes, there are Libertarians who are jerks (see "Agorists," "Mutualists," and 95% of "Anarcho-Capitalists"). I'm a pretty mainstream Libertarian so probably in the minarchist camp.
I just simply believe that people should be free to run their own lives free of interference.
To the Righties I say: I can decide for myself what my own morals and values will be and who I want to marry, what I want to smoke/drink/injest, and when/how I have sex.
To the Lefties I say : I can decide where my money goes and what I want to contribute it to.
Basically, everyone should leave everyone the hell alone and mind their own business.
Speaking from personal experience as someone in a variety of different groups, political and not....
If you went to almost any forum on the internet, you'd find arguments exactly like the ones in this thread. I've probably seen a thousand threads exactly like this one but with different targets...
I mean it really is kinda of hilarious when you think about it. The main points in all the different thread I've seen are all the same, almost to verbatim. Just replace "Libertarian" with "statist" or "soclialist" or "democrat" or "republican" or "neoconservative" and I've seen it.
Everything in this thread about Libertarians being illogical, disregarding evidence, not learning from history, being dogmatic, philosophically corrupt, having personality disorders, being "evil," etc.. is pretty much verbatim what you will find in any forum when people irrationally hate on a philosophical group. I've seen republicans do it to dems, dems to republicans, libertarians, mutualists, anarchists, syndicalists, socialists, communists, you name it...
I'm actually surprised how similar this discussion and all the posts in it are to ones that take place on Libertarian forums like Fr33Agents, Free Keene, or Facebook.