This is a followup to my previous post on true liberalism. This needed a separate post, since libertarians go horribly wrong on various counts.
Can Somebody Define Libertarian Ideology?
Unlike liberalism which has historic roots, this one is an entirely new term, which could mean anything.
There are all kinds of libertarians:
1. It could mean the classical liberals, who lost their original name to socialists/collectivists.
2. Those who believe in “basic income”, a totally communist idea.
3. Anarchists, who believe in breaking government laws instead of changing them. They hate democracy. Something Ayn Rand herself promoted through her work.
4. Those who believe in open migration. This is in sharp contrast to what classical liberal Gary Becker proposes (more here).
5. Those who believe the very presence of the government to be a hindrance and anarchy as the only way out.
The fifth type is the most commonly found bunch among libertarians. While liberals believe in changing government laws to help liberty, libertarians believe in breaking them. But the rule of law is paramount to a government, and true liberals understands its value.
Why Libertarians Are Misguided
The basic and most important functions of the government are defense (Army), justice (courts) and law & order (cops). But to a libertarian, the government is a hindrance and anarchy is the only way out. So how can they handle the following scenarios?
Defense from Foreign Invaders
So can libertarians tell us how they will handle foreign invaders? As we all know, so many foreigners have invaded India. Even internal rebels are very dangerous, as in the case of Russia (USSR, 1917), China (1949) and Iran (1979). So how will libertarians handle internal rebellions, now forget about foreign invasions? In response to threats, the government amasses armies and weapons. And this is the very foundation of the state.
Moreover, the second issue is, privateers are prone to fraud. Of course, the liberal knows that the government could become a Leviathan, but regarding defense, which privateer is worth trusting for our defense? If left unregulated, they’re mostly full of fraud, deceit, intimidation and violence. Even when regulations exist, some privateers cheat us, imagine with no state nor regulations.
The liberal is clear in this aspect. He knows he can entrust his life & freedom to a parliament whose functions he can oversee rather than fraud-prone private businesses. And it is from these considerations that the classical liberal social contract arises as I’ve written in a previous post of mine.
The classical liberal state is a creation of public consent. And people swear allegiance to this state to protect their rights and property.
Taxation Is Neither Theft Nor Forced Labor
We hear this common phrase from Libertarians: “Taxation is theft”. But how far is this true? Or even sensible?
As I’ve mentioned in my previous post, taxes are what you pay to the government for defense, justice and law & order. And what is a government? In the classical liberal state, it’s something people not only elect but also oversee.
Imagine India disappears overnight and we’re confronted by the nuclear-armed Chinese army. Of course, libertarians will also have to pay private defense establishments for their defense, remember “No Free Lunch”. But how many libertarian-minded people would bother to pay “voluntarily” for their defense? And this is why compulsory taxation is the only way to establish sound defense, justice and law & order!
Can Private Security & Justice Be Trusted?
Imagine if we can just pay off the justice system. There would be no natural justice. Justice will become private property. But is this even moral in the first place, forget others? And private cops? Can libertarians even imagine what would happen if this happens? Simply put, these cops can shoot down anybody at will. And the same person who hired them can also hire and pay judges to get “justice”. This will basically lead to deadly combinations of both Kangaroo court systems and mafias, of varying degrees. And will eventually lead to gang wars and other shootouts which we see only in nations with no law & order like Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria.
Contract System – Is It Even Possible?
Libertarians want us to individually pay for justice, law & order protection and defense. But laws of modern nations regarding these run into several thousands of pages, with accountability and punishments. How can individuals even dream of replicating this by their own?
Instead, our representatives can go to the parliament and set laws for our justice, defense and protection. Moreover, we can also supervise them, while they specialize in their tasks. The parliament can establish minimum standards for the government to enact and enforce for all fields/industries, public or private. But libertarians can’t establish even checks and balances for privateers, forget standards!
So our libertarian friends have proven how they don’t understand even basic common sense. It’s best for our libertarian friends to snap out of their daydreams and instead focus on promoting classical liberalism instead of misleading gullible minds.