I am having increasing problems calling myself a libertarian, rather than a conservative. I agree with libertarians regarding economics and government butting out of our private affairs (which are not its business to begin with). But I find some libertarians’ pacifism annoying and distasteful. In addition, their common sense in international affairs is pretty much non-existent.
I don’t understand what’s so difficult about the idea that in order to have freedom, rights and capitalism, one sometimes needs to fight for them against those that try to take them away.
Take, for instance, Ron Paul’s statement that “invasion of Gaza” is sad news for him, since the idea of “preventive, preemptive war is spreading”. Forget about the idiocy of not understanding that sometimes you have to shoot the bastard first before he kills you (“Did you wait for the attacker to shoot first before shooting him?” — “No, why the hell would I do that?”), how is “invasion of Gaza” a preventive war?
I mean, I don’t know how to ask this question is a polite form, but — is he a moron? If somebody tells him, “Give me all your money, your car keys and your house keys”, he refuses, the bastard shoots at him, hits him in the arm, Ron Paul pulls out his gun and shoots the son of a bitch dead — he just did a preventive strike? I suppose, yes, he prevented the attacker from killing him. Is this now immoral? Has Christian idiocy spread to all layers of thinking now?
But an even better treat is this article from a web-site I normally very much respect for its views, articles, lectures and books on economics.
The main idea of the article is this: Arabs hate the State of Israel. The solution is not in a two-state solution or in a one-state solution (I suppose the idea of carpet bombing the area and kicking out the bitches or imposing military law until they learn to behave is also out of question too). The solution is to abolish the idea of a state itself!
We should pursue the dream or anarcho-capitalists and replace a central government with private companies providing law and defense as any other service (I reviewed this idea before) in the society. And since the State of Israel will be no longer there (replaced by Jews protecting themselves through private organizations), Arabs will have no State to hate — problem solved.
I am not going to argue at lenght in favor or against anarcho-capitalism here. Generally speaking, I certainly agree that private enterprise can provide any service better than the government, including law and defense, but that I do not see it possible to achieve equality of these services (necessary for a free society to exist to begin with) with anarchist system. I don’t have a problem if Bill Gates gets a better service from a hotel or a restaraunt than me. He is richer, he provides the society with services I don’t — he has better service coming. I do hope, however, that our representation in a court of law or our defense by the Army will be equal and not based on our wealth.
One can expect “difficult” questions of morality (children, animals, abortion — just to name a few) will arise.
Furthermore, anarchist society is possible only in civilizations that are ready for it and where majority of people will have necessary ethical, economic, social and political views (in societal and invidivual levels) to support such a society — otherwise, the society will spontaneously revert to a state, and not necessarily a better one. In case of Arabs, this is sure to happen. (Somebody almost accused me there of racism for stating this opinion. Well, let’s forget about Arabs and politics and look at Wikipedia. American Wikipedia is capable of producing articles with neutral point of view — at least making effort to have one. In Russian Wikipedia such thing is not even on agenda. As I pointed out, the problem is not with genetics, of course. The problem is with culture.)
You can read some of my comments there (as “CA”), but I just want to quote one comment (by Kyle):
I said something similar a little earlier in the comments:
In the case of Israel and Palestine, what does the presence or absence of states really have to do with the real problem of use of force? Let’s hypothetically eliminate the state of Israel. Now we have a large and homogeneous group of Jews who are pissed off that they see rockets flying at them from the other part of town. A bunch of them get together in the name of self-preservation and go to Gaza with the intention of apprehending or killing the culprits. The homogeneous group of Arabs on the other side are equally pissed, and do the same. The only difference between this vigilantism and the state-sanctioned brand of violence is the name.
Anarchists: what am I missing?
Also read this comment criticizing the idea of private defense (e.g., he discusses counter-examples of African warlords).
As long as there are Muslims in the Middle East that believe that there needs to exist a Shariat-law–based state on every land that was once under jurisdiction of Muslims (including Spain, by the way), these Muslims will support states, private organizations, alien fleets — whatever — whose goal will be establishment of such a state. And if people no longer have such view, then the problem of Arab–Israeli conflict will disappear by itself — with or without anarchy.
Finally, the idea that Arabs are opposed to specifically Jewish state (rather than just Jewish society) is absurd. Arabs are opposed not to a Jewish state per se, but to Jews controlling territory once under Muslim jurisdiction.
Muslims are happy to have Jews live under their authority, pay taxes and suffer a few pogroms once in a while. They will never, however, accept an idea of Jews controlling once-Muslim land, whether through a State and Knesset or through private Jewish law- and defense-providing organizations.
So, to summarize, perhaps I should start describing myself as right-wing again. The problem is: most of today’s right-wingers are actually turning into socialists. And economically, I am very much a libertarian. I suppose I’ll just have to describe myself as “anti-liberal”.