Let’s take stock

© Courtesy David Farrer, all rights reserved

TWO-IN-ONE-POST, PART 1

Allow me to introduce someone who probably needs no introduction, being an old salt in the blogging game – that redoubtable Scot David Farrer.  Here’s his take on the Orphans.  Not all of you are going to like it but hey …

I mentioned the debut of the new blog Orphans of Liberty. A nice name by the way.

Here is their initial statement:

Who are we?We are differing voices who come together under one banner – that of liberty. We are political and apolitical – some belong to parties, some do not. Some are self-professed libertarians, some are small “c” conservatives, some classical liberals – the names are varied.   However we all have one thing in common, a love of personal liberty; that casualty of the encroaching state as it seeks to micromanage our lives. In his first post for this blog, luikkerland states that writing is the the first act of rebellion. Here, then, is our defiance. Read, engage, enjoy.

Now this is all very fine but I do have one concern and that’s the use of the word libertarian. Co-founder of the new site James Higham places himself in the Libertarian Quadrant.

Good.

But back in November I warned about the increasing use of the term “left libertarian”, which I’ve seen quite a few times in the Orphanosphere recently.

This is what I wrote:

The point is that liberty is indivisible. The case for economic liberty is exactly the same as the case for personal liberty. The economic spectrum goes from authoritarianism to libertarianism just as does the civil liberties spectrum. The government that takes away your economic freedom is as much your enemy as one that takes away your personal freedom.

There is some evidence on my bookshelves that I became a libertarian way back in January 1972 and I don’t think that I ever heard of “left libertarianism” for at least twenty years afterwards. But now it’s out there in the marketplace of ideas, although its adherents might not like that term!

Here is what Wikipedia has to say:

Libertarianism is a political philosophy that upholds individual liberty, especially freedom of expression and action.[1] Libertarianism includes diverse beliefs and organizations–all advocate either the minimization or the elimination of the state, and the goal of maximizing individual liberty and freedom.Libertarian schools of thought differ over the degree to which the state should be reduced, with minarchists advocating reduction to only state protection from aggression, theft, breach of contract, and fraud, and anarchists advocating complete elimination of the state. Additionally,some schools are supportive of private property rights in the ownership of unappropriated land and natural resources while others reject such private individual ownership and often support communal ownership instead.[2][3][4] These are sometimes grouped as right-libertarians and left-libertarians respectively.

I’ve underlined the key quote.

I think this is highly misleading. Real libertarians believe, as stated above, in individual liberty, and only actual individuals can act. Furthermore, acting individuals who appropriate previously unowned resources are then free to decide what to do with their new property, including deciding whether that property continues to be owned by individuals, or communally through co-operatives and the like or indeed by profit-seeking companies, which are themselves a form of communal ownership.

The problem with the so-called “left libertarians” is that they only seem to accept the idea of communal ownership, and communal ownership of a particular sort. In other words they don’t believe in individual liberty at all.

There is another point. Without private ownership of property there can be no long-lasting non-economic liberties either.

We real libertarians are perfectly comfortable with any pattern of ownership, so long as it is voluntary. Of course, those of us who are economically minded will point out that certain types of ownership are not conducive to material prosperity but those who chose to use their own property in that way are perfectly free to do so. But not with my property, comrades.

I’m sure that most Orphans would prefer to live in a prosperous society. That requires a defence of real libertarianism.

TWO-IN-ONE POST, PART 2

QUESTIONNAIRE FOR YOU ORPHANOSPHERISTS READING THIS:

*  What would you like to see at this site?  Podcasts, youtubes, e-interviews with movers and shakers, campaigns, what?

*  Should we create a badge/logo which identifies us and we can give to various blogs in the field, sort of like a bloody devil, less dripping in gore?

*  Who is going to come to the fore and design this for us?  Whose going to draw it?  Will some good person step forward?

8 comments for “Let’s take stock

  1. May 1, 2011 at 9:59 am

    What would you like to see at this site?  Podcasts, youtubes, e-interviews with movers and shakers, campaigns, what?

    All of the above sounds good to me!

    Should we create a badge/logo which identifies us and we can give to various blogs in the field, sort of like a bloody devil, less dripping in gore?

    It would be a good idea.

    Who is going to come to the fore and design this for us?  Whose going to draw it?  Will some good person step forward?

    I’d volunteer in a heartbeat, but I’ve little artistic ability 🙁

  2. Westerlyman
    May 1, 2011 at 10:56 am

    Agree absolutely with part 1. Left libertarian is an oxymoron. Does not compute. Illogical.

  3. William
    May 1, 2011 at 11:15 am

    What would you like to see at this site?

    Podcasts with people who have actually achieved something not just noticed something would be good. People outside of the so called ‘libertarian world’ (I really am coming to despise the labelling of humanity)
    Youtubes in a similar vein
    Campaigns are playing the game the politicians way. These have been tried time and again and always fail because they are hitting the wrong target.
    The real target in my humble is the mind of the individual not the ‘collective mind of the sheeple’.

    Should we create a badge/logo which identifies us and we can give to various blogs in the field, sort of like a bloody devil, less dripping in gore?

    Are you serious?
    Again you are playing to the mindset provided by the state/government aka slave masters. Giving people a badge is turning them into targets for future ridicule which of course is what the slave master wants. You would be doing their job for them marking out dissenters for future reference and possible elimination by whatever means is required. Often ridicule is enough but all avenues are open to the slave masters

    Who is going to come to the fore and design this for us? Whose going to draw it? Will some good person step forward?

    Enough with the labels. What is wrong with a group of individuals thinking, talking evaluating and ACTING in whatever way they see fit to try and bring about change in their lives?
    It is best to lead by example and immediately ‘teach what you have learnt’.

    The ‘society’ created for the slaves by the slave master is a top down society which tells us change filters down from the top to the bottom. This is a lie. Change happens at the individual level. Once enough people change as individuals a critical mass is achieved, or if you prefer, a momentum is gained and change becomes unstoppable.
    The Swiss need just 100,000 people to instigate a change in their individual and collective lives by forcing their government to abide by the will of the people.
    Here a million people marched in London to stop a war and their government took no notice…

    That is as profound a truth as you need to realise we are doing things the wrong way round. The people who currently run things won’t change because they are benefiting from having things the way they are.
    No group of people who play the game the way those at the top want them to will have the slightest impact on those at the top. Change has to happen in the mind of the individual.

    This site has replaced 90% of my blogroll. Its contributors offer a wide range of viewpoints around a loose theme of ‘change’. The commenting in particular marks this site out as the place to be to find out what personal changes can be made, why they can be made and how they can be made.

    It is impossible to ‘win the game’ by playing the way the opposition want you to play and remember that despite appearances to the contrary there are no countries, there is no state, there is no government there are only human beings.

    And sorry but I have never heard of David Farrer.

    Question for mods
    Probably being a tad stupid here but what HTML is allowed in these comments?

    • May 1, 2011 at 11:41 am

      And sorry but I have never heard of David Farrer.

      You have now, William. 😉

      Good points here and that’s what the post was all about – yea or nay. That’s what the whole blog is about. Speak your mind and from that, we can move forward.

      Julia and Westerlyman – good.

    • May 1, 2011 at 3:26 pm

      Probably being a tad stupid here but what HTML is allowed in these comments?

      Well, blockquote works as does the usual formatting and links. I’ve not tried anything more complex that that, yet.

  4. May 1, 2011 at 1:33 pm

    “Should we create a badge/logo which identifies us and we can give to various blogs in the field”

    Already did.

    http://englandsfreedome.blogspot.com/2011/04/my-first-post-chez-orphans.html

    • May 1, 2011 at 1:44 pm

      Hey, we might use that for now.

  5. May 1, 2011 at 8:52 pm

    Thanks for posting this James.

    The photo is the one I have as my screensaver both at home and at work in Charlotte Square. The photo shows the square and Bute House, the official residence of the First Minister, is just off to the right. Who’ll be in there after Thursday remains to be seen… I’ve never seen Alex Salmond at Bute House although I’ve met him a few times elsewhere. His Labour predecessor used to bid me a cheery “good morning” as he got into his taxpayer-funded limo on his way to Holyrood. Mr McConnell once made a speech urging folk to go to work by public transport. I blogged about his use of the limo and provided a suitable bus timetable. 😆

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