You can’t can peas without a can. But when the price of steel is high, you can set up a simple math problem to minimize the amount of steel per volume of peas. Anyone interested in freedom can also minimize the addition of coercion into the laws made in defense of individual rights.
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When I first encountered the LP in 1980, it took awhile for their main preoccupation to sink in. To libertarians, they explained, the initiation of force is like the price of steel. You set up equations and logical solutions that minimize the initiation of force, just as canners know how to minimize the surface area of a can of peas. As the initiation of force approaches zero, freedom (by definition) is increased and, consequently, wealth and life-worth-living multiply apace.
Now that the LP wields as many votes as the State of Virginia, looter parties are confronted with pawn power on the chessboard in the form of LP spoiler votes. Each entrenched looter party now has to repeal aggressive laws or lose because of libertarian spoiler votes. If either entrenched party fails in this task, more libertarian spoiler votes are cast. In the looter frame of reference, every such vote greatly increases the risk that the other looter party will win and snatch away “their” boodle and commandeer “their” armed goons. That’s third-party reality, and ignoring it won’t make it go away.
Both kleptocracy parties go to great lengths to trick voters into giving them the sanction of the victim. They make up fake names, for instance. Mystical bigots who in 1918 were monarchists, prohibitionists, and theocrats now call themselves “conservatives.” Factory-confiscating communists who in 1918 called themselves “socialists” today prefer the cognomen of “liberals.” Liberal is what parsimonious low-tariff mercantilists answered to back when communists called them “plutocrats,” “capitalists” or “The Accumulation.” That gradually changed, primarily through the efforts of the Fabian Society and Norman Thomas:
“The American people will never knowingly adopt socialism. But, under the name of “liberalism,” they will adopt every fragment of the socialist program, until one day America will be a socialist nation, without knowing how it happened. I no longer need to run as a Presidential Candidate for the Socialist Party. The Democratic Party has adopted our platform.” ― Norman Mattoon Thomas
Socialists and theocrats, who after 1939 claimed that Adolf Hitler “wasn’t really” a socialist OR christian and that catholic and lutheran clergy “never really” helped the National Socialist Third Reich, loudly claim Thomas “never said” such a thing. Fine. The statement is no less true (if one expects truth from looters) and there is an undisputed equivalent by a contemporaneous intellectual of the looter persuasion:
The American People will take Socialism, but they won’t take the label. I certainly proved it in the case of EPIC.* Running on the Socialist ticket I got 60,000 votes, and running on the slogan to ‘End Poverty in California’ I got 879,000. I think we simply have to recognize the fact that our enemies have succeeded in spreading the Big Lie. There is no use attacking it by a front attack, it is much better to out-flank them. –Upton Sinclair, circa 1934
After Soviet Russia self-identified as a non-religious state, as the United States had in the Treaty of Tripoli, a schism developed between christian nationalsocialists and lay socialists. The Hoover Administration would not recognize the Soviet government. Because this Treaty of Tripoli is disputed and denied by christian national socialists, I include here Article XI from my original 1910 version of Treaties, Conventions, International Acts, Protocols and Agreements Vol II p 1786:
ARTICLE XI: As the Government of the United States of America is not in any sense founded on the Christian Religion; as it has in itself no character of enmity towards the laws, religion or tranquility of Musselmen; and as the said States have never entered into any war or any act of hostility against any Mehomitan nation, it is declared by the parties, that no pretext arising from religious opinions shall ever produce an interruption of the harmony existing between the two countries.
The contest between Liberals, Socialists and Organized Mysticism has–with little change of meaning–morphed into a three-way contest between Libertarians, religious national socialists, and lay international socialists. Libertarian spoiler votes are reversing those rights-destroying trends of the 1890s to 1990s the same way, and Populist spoiler votes in 1892 set them in motion in the first place and George Wallace spoiler votes in 1968 accelerated the process.
Simply put, the philosophical teachings of Ayn Rand–put in writing in 1947 as National Socialists were put to death for altruist genocide at Nuremberg–have replaced altruist conditioning that favored the initiation of force. Consequently, the Libertarian Party, founded on sympathetic principles, has replaced all looter parties as the prive mover for change. The leveraged clout of libertarian spoiler votes is changing laws even more efficiently than the communist-socialist-populist spoiler votes of a century ago. Libertarian success is not a mater of putting “our” politicians on government payrolls. It is the result of giving voters a way to express their preference for freedom in terms no political party dares to ignore. –Hank Phillips
*EPIC: Eliminate Poverty in California, a precursor to LBJ’s War On Poverty and other things.
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