I wasn’t going to write this post but recent turn of events has led to me wondering if Rand’s criticism of libertarianism was still relevant. Now, I refuse to call myself a “libertarian” because of the negative implications of various logical fallacies involved such as cultural relativity and ethical subjectivism. Rand was strict about the use of the term “objectivist”, but for me, I see there are other forms of individualists who may agree with most of the doctrine of the philosophy of living on earth, therefore my preferred term is individualist which is interchangeable with objectivist but not all individualists are objectivists, so only when actual objectivists are mentioned then I would use objectivist otherwise they are called individualist.
So how come Rand disassociated herself from the libertarians? As summarised in Libertarianism: The Perversion of Liberty by Peter Schwartz, the fundamental criticism given to libertarianism is its lack of value of liberty. To be free, one must understands that rational egoism as the only form of morality, to do so, one requires the axioms of a philosophical foundation. Only when one has his philosophy can the reasoning of non-aggression principle be validated. Another problem associated with libertarianism is the “anything goes” attitude to “unite” the “front”, there’s no need for a code of ethics, no need for the concept of private property, no need for the inalienable right to our lives. (The essay actually is 28 pages long for those who are interested to read, it can be found in The Voice of Reason: Essays in Objectivist Thought, chapter 31). Simply put it this way, one cannot proclaim to support freedom without understanding what freedom is.
Thus, like Echidna giving birth to Cerberus, Chimera and Scylla, etc. Libertarianism gave birth to the perversion of cults in the pretence of supporting “individual rights”. I’ll discuss a few of the particularly monstrous ones for the rest of the post.
- Mutualism: According to mutualism, private property only is private when it is being actively used. What’s even more disturbing is their acceptance of labour theory of value, condemning banking in favour of collectivism. Yet despite all these authoritarian stances, they claim to support the rights of individuals. Mutualists are communists on acid.
- Agorism: The edgy cousin of anarchism, they advocate the non-aggression principle to overthrow the state by engaging in counter economics such as black market and alternative currency. There not a single bone of individualism in these people as their sole purpose to achieve freedom is really by being bums despite their claim to want to be producers in the society. They live in a dream of overthrowing the state by virtually doing nothing, not a single business man is an agorist. The closest to agorism to ever come to reality is the black market established during Soviet Russia and other communist movements. Another major perversion is their lack of individual rights to own ideas/their mind.
- Bleeding-Heart Libertarianism: Even their name itself is giving me a headache. These people are mostly classical liberals who believe the use of force is acceptable when it is beneficial to others. Their sacrificial attitude renders them possibly the worst of all cultists.
- Green Anarchism/Libertarianism: These people favour the return to the primitiveness/agrarianism rather than progress, their dedication to primitiveness allows them to initiate force when they deem a witch-hunt of “polluters” should commence.
- Anarcho Communism/socialism: Pretty Self-explanatory/contradictory, not even going to provide a link.
- Geolibertarianism: Geolibertarians believe that no one has the right to own property because land and natural resources are not products of labour thus it violates the labour value of property. They ignore the homestead principle by turning capitals into collective property. Based on the physiocratic ideas of the 18th century, geolibertarians are barbarians (who suffer from cultural relativity) still living in the 21st century.
The lesson here is that just because someone somewhere may have an idea or an action remotely supporting freedom, doesn’t make them individualists- Antiwar rioters are not individualists, hippies are not individualists, feminists are not individualists, black panthers are not individualists, stonewall rioters were not individualists. You can’t appreciate the fruit of freedom while attempting to uproot the tree.