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Friday, July 06, 2012

Rothbardian Libertarianism: It Ain't About Freedom

It's about property:

"More negatively: BRG are making the point that libertarians are unconcerned with maximizing freedom. The proof is simple. Different ways of regulating the workplace will plausibly increase freedom-as-non-coercion relative to the levels that a libertarian regime will produce, and libertarians are not willing to go for it. They are unwilling in principle. From which it follows that libertarians are not concerned to maximize freedom. They are maximizing contract rights and property rights."

2 comments:

  1. If the definition of libertarian is one in which you should have the 'most amount of freedom', then, couldn't that lead to all kinds of bad consequences. For example, wouldn't the Pharaoh, Kim Jung Ill, or some other type of absolute dictator be the 'freest' person, in the sense that they are allowed to do whatever they want?

    I may be operating under a wrong definition of freedom, as it relates to libertarian, etc. But, I had conceived of 'freedom' in the political sense, to mean, your capacity do what you want as long as you don't violate the life (kill, maim), liberty (kidnap, etc), and property (things people legitimately own), of another individual.

    If I were to walk into a business and demand I be given a job, and then I am refused, it doesn't strike me as correct to say my liberties have been violated. Or that my rights have been denied.

    Or, it would not seem correct to demand that the people living in a random house let me in, and start to arrange their living room however so I liked.

    Maybe I'd be a great employee and make that business a lot of money. Perhaps I could arrange the living room so that the family would eventually be much happier. But, isn't that a bit besides the point?

    Maybe libertarians who are Rothbardian types are wrong about a lot of stuff (children and parents, the issue of the legality of abortion, tariffs and such maybe,etc, etc), but, it would seem that the issue that you can 'do with your own what you please' isn't one of them.

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