-99 votes

Ron Paul and Calling Libertarians a Bunch of Delusional No-Hopers to their Face

I've written an article that aims to show people that Ron Paul should not be treated as a hero, nor electoral politics as a viable method for achieving freedom.

I invite all feedback.

http://consentient.wordpress.com/2012/11/16/calling-libertar...

[UPDATE: Here is part 2, an addendum to the first article]

http://consentient.wordpress.com/2012/11/17/internet-liberta...




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Dr. Paul is an educator.

The Voluntaryist/Anarcho-Capitalist ranks are larger than ever before in history, thanks to him.

He is well aware that politics is not a solution to our problems, he uses it as a platform to educate.

If it weren't for him, you wouldn't have all these minarchists here to convert.

He's done his part, and it is up to Voluntaryists/Anarcho-Capitalists to finish the educational process.

But, you have to go about educating in a civilized manner, coming across as condescending and arrogant will not convince anyone.

I have managed to spread the ideas of Self-Ownership and Non-Aggression here with great reception.

There are hundreds of AnCaps here, and we don't normally get downvoted 40+ times, because we deliver our message in an inoffensive manner.

Delivery is important.

Check out the Laissez-Faire Journal at LFJournal.com


"The State is a gang of thieves writ large." - Murray Rothbard

Thanks Josh. I agree that

Thanks Josh.

I agree that delivery is important, but not as important as the message.

I really don't see any way to convey my message, undiluted, with the sense of urgency it demands, without ruffling a few feathers.

I'm more than happy to face the fall-out of my choice, and if people think I'm condescending or arrogant from my writings, that is not something I have a whole lot of control over.

My hope is that if they read all of my work, watch my videos, or even better, correspond directly with me or meet me, they would see that I am not arrogant at all, just devoted to principles that enrich my life. I want to see those same principles catch on, that's all.

As for inoffensive manner, I feel I have only spoken the truth. If Ron Paul supporters can't handle the fact that their idol is what he is, and his ideas are what they are, that's really not my problem.

The title of my article might appear sensationalised, but in fact I fully stick by it. Libertarians are for the most part delusional, and their current strategy (or lack thereof in many cases) carries with it no hope.

That's the way I see it. People are free to point out where they think I err.

Anarchist...

I respect your right to your views/opinions. However...why are you here at the Daily Paul? The US Constitution provides for a limited Federal Government. That is what Ron Paul argued...and voted for. He never pretended to be an Anarchist. Most of the people at the Daily Paul want a very limited Federal Government.

“Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable.”
- President John F. Kennedy

In answer to your question

In answer to your question 'why am I here', here is a reply, quoted from an earlier comment:

"I'm appealing to the minarchists because if we can get you to see the light and involved in a REAL social movement, then huge things can happen."

Thanks.

[EDIT: Oh, by the way, I just noticed you addressing me as 'anarchist'. I'm not, thanks. :)

Exactly. His entire argument is fallacious

His entire intellectual argument is based around the assumption that Ron Paul - and his supporters - are anarchists.

This is false on the face of it.

Ron Paul is not an anarchist. Period.

Neither am I. And - other than a somewhat vocal minority here on the site and others like it - neither are his supporters.

Also:

The 'not so subtle' tone of the article, which implies that Ron Paul supporters - as a rule - are foolish hero-worshipping do-nothings mindlessly following a misguided charlatan to their own doom lol ..

Yeah. Caught that. Hilarious imo. Bitter much?

1. Wrong. My argument is not

1. Wrong. My argument is not based on the assumption that Ron Paul is an anarchist or his supporters anarchists. I know that Ron Paul is a statist, and that his supporters are statists. THAT is why I wrote the article, to address that problem.

2. Ron Paul supporters ARE foolish, hero-worshipping and misguided. I did state that quite explicitly, not implicitly as you claim. I wouldn't go so far as to call Paul a charlatan, and I wouldn't say that libertarians "do nothing", but Paul's ideas ARE contradictory, and libertarians aren't doing anything that will make any difference. You won Iowa, Maine, and other places, but the big beast that controls the electoral system you hope to use as the main vehicle for your revolution, took those votes, shat on them, and then carried on spoonfeeding Soylent Turquoise to the sheeple. It made NO difference.

Bitter? Perhaps a bit. Let me ask you a question: what feeling do you have towards conservatives and Republicans that hear your Paulite arguments but are unswayed by them? I imagine you sometimes feel like pulling your hair out over it? "Why are they going with Romney/Rubio/Ryan/? Why can't they understand that the government that governs best is the one that governs least?"

I feel the same way towards you guys, and ask myself, why can't more of you wake up to voluntaryism, and, well...reality, when myself and so many other former-minarchists have done it.

Perhaps the difference is that when we 'discovered' minarchism, we didn't just rest on our laurels, shut our ears, and sign up for the Ron Paul Revolution. We kept on learning, and eventually, we just go it.

Does that make us 'better people' than you? No.
Does it make us cooler? Superior? No.
Does it make us arrogant for trying to HELP you and point out to you the inconsistencies and contradictions in your thinking? No.

Does it make us bitter? Maybe just a bit.

Does it make me confident that at least a small portion of you will wake up eventually?

Considerably more than I am bitter.

Ah. Ok . Well ..

1. Sounded to me, and looks like a whole lot of other people here .. that you are an Anarchist assuming that RP and (collectively, generalizing) his supporters CLAIM to believe what you do ..

.. but are falling short of and are hypocritical in our efforts toward achieving *that* goal.

When the truth is - Ron Paul - and speaking for myself - and from what I gather from many (if not the majority) of the people on this board and others like its ... are:

- NOT anarchists

- Never claimed to be

- Don't believe it's practical, and ultimately

- Totally disagree with you.

So, we are not working towards that, and we see no hypocrisy in trying to restore the foundational principles of our Republic, and working on that basis from any number of angles - up to and including working within established parties to make that happen.

Or maybe simply educating others, preparing ourselves, becoming more self-sufficient, and pulling back our support and consent to the current corrupt order wherever / whenever possible.

So what I am wondering is - why are you chastising people for not sticking to "the goal" when it's YOUR goal. Not ours.

2. I agree with and 100% support this statement:

"Government is like fire, a necessary evil"

Without any fire, we freeze, cannot cook food, and cannot (for the most part) generate energy for technology.

So for civilization - it is necessary.

However, fire is *evil* because, if you don't watch it all the time, it naturally will grow and grow and consume everything, and injure you or kill you violently.

So - not only do I, Ron Paul, and many (if not the majority) of the people on this board and others like it (representing the majority) agree with this statement ...

We (at least I) have studied the extreme positions of dismantling governments entirely, pondered the arguments, done our own thought experiments and / or examined history, and have come to the conclusion that it won't and *can't* work.

Government *is* evil, attracts evil, and enables evil.

BUT (sadly) at the current level of social, technological, emotional, and psychological state of humans as a species?

Total anarchism / minarchism / volunaryism, or any other ISM that does not recognize the necessity of SOME public agreement and enforcement of laws protecting liberty, life, and property (ie. controlled fire):

- is not practical,

- will not be acceptable to the majority of America OR the worlds population, and

- if you ever found yourself in a position to be able to try it on any scale that would actually matter / prove anything?

Your little experiment would quickly fall to some other, more organized, well armed group that would overwhelm you, take your individual properties, freedoms, and many of you would lose your life.

This is what I believe. I'm pretty sure this is what Ron Paul believes. And I think many of the people on the board (and educated supporters as a whole) basically agree with what I'm saying here.

So we are not deluded. We are not foolish hero worshiping misguided fools chasing a pipe dream. We have read, researched, and studied arguments like yours with great curiosity and deliberation ..

And for the most part, we have rejected them. We disagree.

If that means even advocates of de-centralized, minimal, constitutionally based governments limited by rule of law are "Statists" ... well, feel free to define words however you want to man. Hell, make your own dictionary or language if you want to.

Nobody can stop you, nor could most of the people here (that I can see) be bothered trying to.

1. I'm not chastising

1. I'm not chastising minarchists for not sticking to my goal. You patronise me by assuming I could think in stupid ways like that. I am chastising you for not seeing how absolutely problematic government is. You say its a necessary evil, but I don't see what response you can offer to any serious argument against it.

Let's go premise by premise.

It's a necessary evil - why?
(Example answer: there are bad people, and we need to protect the good people from the bad people)
> So what's stopping the bad people from getting into the government.

Whatever set of premises you start with, when you work through it logically, government cannot work.

Your analogy with fire doesn't work at all because fire is not necessary for life. Hominids ate raw food diets for millennia before the use of fire. Just as, at different points in history, the current conception of government wasn't present either.

You say you've gone away and studied your position, and I sympathise that you may think that is true (I thought that when I subscribed to minarchism, a few years ago), but the truth is that the more you look into history, political philosophy, language, post-structuralist critical theory and other areas, you stand a better chance of one day having that eureka movement and feeling the statism leave you like the misapprehension that it is.

2. You're uncomfortable equating minarchism with statism? Of course it is. You believe in a state. This is not me changing the meaning of words. State is a synonym for government. You believe in a limited government, so you believe, by definition, in minimal statism. But that's still statism. Is it the SAME as totalitarianism? No. But both advocate, on a practical basis, the 'necessity' of a government.

What cause me to wake up and acknowledge that the spook of minarchism had left me was when I realised that all the arguments I had made against my non-statist friends were hollow. I didn't believe them anymore. I realised the importance of moralism. In order for a minimal statist to critique a totalitarian, he has to appeal to moralism. There has to be something morally wrong with trampling individual freedom, or the totalitarian isn't doing anything wrong. The utility argument that it cannot work, is obviously bullshit because there are plenty of places in the world where that kind of paradigm exists and has existed for ages. So if a minarchist evokes moralism to critique a 'full-on statist', then he is saying that morality is important.

If this is true, then I challenge any minarchist to make a single MORAL case for government vs. no government. It has never been made. Reference always descends into consequentialism - "it is needed, because if it isn't there, THIS will happen", or the horrendous "what ifs" of pure speculation and excuse-making.

I watched the Helfeld-Molyneux debate twice, once as a minarchist, and I thought Molyneux was bad for not being able to answer Jan's "what ifs".

A few years later I watched it again having shed belief in a necessary government and realised that the debate begins with Stef asking Jan to make moral arguments and then there is more than an hour of Jan completely ignoring this.

And sadly, when people go down the route of pragmatism (making practical arguments for propositions) they are implying that moral principles are not important. In which case, you have no leg to stand on when it comes to criticising what is so appalling about regimes like China.

I sincerely hope that you will find what I have written useful. Ultimately, no non-statist ever convinced me. I needed time to figure it out on my own, and woke up one day while watching Badnarik debate Molyneux and realised that Badnarik was making all the same arguments I made, and they sounded shit to me.

As for the questions you raise about the practicalities of voluntaryist principles, I invite you to read the back catalogue of my blog for some further ideas, but it's probably only worth doing once you realise that government is, morally and practically, not the droids you are looking for.

I agree that the extreme unlikelihood of the ideas being implemented in our lives makes for a daunting prospect. But for me, having woken up to what government really means (necessarily, not just 'bad governments' (good ones don't exist), I find the idea of living under the predation and oppression of governments for the rest of my life FAR more daunting.

Good luck! :)

Look ...

Obviously you are extremely intelligent, well read, and have examined many alternative points of view to come to the conclusions you have.

So I respect it man. No bs.

What it all comes down to, for me, is this:

There comes a certain point where intellectualizing and theorycrafting about ideal / utopian scenarios becomes an end in itself.

There is a certain unique pleasure in forming intellectual / logical / left brained theories - of all kinds - that have an internal consistency, have an elegant structure, and can be written about and debated endlessly.

Yet always reality is out there, waiting, outside of your door.

People are what they are. Human nature is what it is.

This planet and homo sapiens being what we are, has serious limitations and they are what defines what is possible, or not.

In some other future world, where our brains and emotional / psychological impulses have evolved to the point where we could handle it ...

And where psychopathic inter-species predators are bred out of the population to an insignificant statistical factor?

Stateless society might be possible. Might even be a higher order of human relations and existence.

Probably will be.

But not now.

downvoted

I see where you are coming from, which is a Stefen Molyneux -esque thought process. But instead of talking about the system as a whole you attacked the man that has brought millions of people around to the anarchy/liberty way of thinking.

I personally think Ron Paul NEVER had any hopes for a reformed government, he just saw it as his way to inform and, more importantly, REFORM the masses. And by most standards hes done wonders for the philosophical revolution that government is bad in all of its forms.

Don't attack the man for being part of the machine, ATTACK THE MACHINE and its mechanisms that propel it forward. By doing this, you inform people without dividing the message. By dividing I mean turning away those that like Ron Paul just to appeal to the even smaller base of anarchist that don't like RP.

Tools of war are not always obvious. The worst weapon is an idea planted in the mind of man. Prejudices can kill, suspicion can destroy, and a thoughtless, frightened search for a scapegoat has an everlasting fallout all of its own.

1. I am attacking the

1. I am attacking the machine. By way of an example. That example happens to be Ron Paul, who I feel is diverting the attentions and energies of a great many people who might otherwise contribute to a real social movement campaigning for a coherent and CONSISTENT message of freedom.

2. Even if Ron Paul WAS just an interloper that wanted to broadcast his message, it still doesn't change the fact that his message is contradictory and plain wrong.

3. People are already divided, because libertarians are people that can't agree on anything except (ostensibly) the desire for freedom. But freedom is poorly defined, and their strategies are absurd.

Moreover, people will always be divided into two groups - those that can see the truth and those that are labouring under a misapprehension. Minarchism is such a misapprehension.

I am not appealing to the anarchists, they already largely agree with me (though their theories are also incomplete). I'm appealing to the minarchists because if we can get you to see the light and involved in a REAL social movement, then huge things can happen.

Please read my thoughts on social movements if you want to better understand where I am coming from.

Heck, read everything on my site. I heartily recommend it ;)

didn't read your article

(or any of the comments here)

but would just like to point out that the opposite of unreasonable is reasonable. 'consentient' is just being pretentious.

How long have you had the thesaurus? You don't have to use it all the time.

BECAUSE you didn't read my

BECAUSE you didn't read my webpage "Are you reasonable?"...

http://consentient.wordpress.com/are-you-reasonable/

you haven't seen my demonstration that, vis a vis social relations, the reasonable IS the consentient.

Why is it a crime to have a good vocabulary?

I think you're just smarting from having your idol attacked.

Please

Tell me people who have educated (or got people to educate themselves) more people in the US about liberty than Ron Paul? Especially in the last 8 years.
Gary Johnson? I think not.
You say it's about educating people, I say he's done more of that in the last 8 years than anyone you can name. That's why you came here to post, to the Daily Paul. Because you know where people educated and opinionated in this topic are at, the DailyPAUL, as in Ron Paul.

I came to Daily Paul to

I came to Daily Paul to implore the minarchists here to reconsider their positions by way of considering my arguments.

Sure, out of every 100 readers 90 at least will bay for my blood and call me a mere Paul-basher, but they're missing the point and are not yet ready.

10 though, have a chance of the 'eureka moment' that I had back in 2009 when they realise "Oh yeah, limited government is a unicorn".

As for who has educated more people, you're missing the point I'm making.

If all the libertarians (hundreds of thousands if not millions of people) want real change, do you think they will do better via one politician attempting to gain enough coverage on the dinosaur media to persuade the other 200 million Americans, or by each of those hundreds of thousands of people going out and educating 2 or 3 or 12 or 25 people?

What's more, Ron Paul is an agent of government. Government is an unjustifiable violator of freedom. If you really believe in freedom, you won't have anything to do with it.

So

Couldn't name anybody. That's what I thought. I read your post on your site and the comments you make below it and you have repeatedly said it is about educating people and getting the message out. WHO HAS DONE A BETTER JOB OF GETTING THE LIBERTY MESSAGE OUT??

Part of the reason many people took notice of Ron Paul and explored his message is BECAUSE he is in government. It is always good to have someone who has experience in what they are critiquing spreading the message. It doesn't matter what level of liberty you ultimately want to get to, it has to start somewhere. We are not going to go from where we are now to anarchy by "word of mouth". If there are not people in government who want to change the rules, the rules won't change, that should be obvious. And I ask once again for you to name me one person who has educated more people than Ron Paul on the need to change the rules? Who has made more people consider the role of government?

And Ron Paul hasn't got alot of help from the dinosaur media to become as well known as he is, the internet and alternative media is to thank for that.

Oh its a contest is

Oh its a contest is it?

Listen, Stefan Molyneux has probably reached a comparable number of people, and not only that but his message is a darn sight better than Paul's liberty-lite dilution. You talk about "getting the liberty message out" but Paul's message isn't really about liberty is it? How do you NOT understand that government and liberty are mutually exclusive things???

Also, I know Paul hasn't had help from the dinosaur media. Hence my references to his struggle inside of it. The presence of that media is just one more reason for not going the electoral route (apart from the fact its immoral), because the electoral route is really the TV route, and TV encourages people to accept propositions without really thinking about them.

Beyond a few hours here and there, I haven't watched a TV set for 10 years, and when I have, I've been shocked that I ever saw it as anything other than constant stream of propaganda and mind-mushing gibberish.

https://consentient.wordpress.com/2012/09/09/breaking-bad-an...

I'm done

You can't keep telling people it is about educating people and spreading the message and then blow off the person who has done that the most. Stefan Molyneux has reached a comparable number of people?!? HA!

Good luck to you, your blog, and your word of mouth anarchy movement. I'm sure you'll be very successful.

"Listen, Stefan Molyneux has

"Listen, Stefan Molyneux has probably reached a comparable number of people..."

You're wildly psychotic for believing and saying this

Ventura 2012

If I wanted to hear Ron Paul

If I wanted to hear Ron Paul bashing with zero insight I'd listen to Glenn Beck.

Ventura 2012

If I wanted to read a

If I wanted to read a defensive comment with zero argument, I'd reach for the Obama manifesto.

One would have to be instantly dismissive of anything that painted one's deities in a negative light to say that my article had zero insight.

tasmlab's picture

Any idol-ization / adulation from you, Bennett?

Just curious, have you now or in the past have any emotional idol-ization or adulation for Dr. Paul? Do you have an instinct to celebrate his persona without regard to the philosophy, the consistency of ideas, etc.? Even unconsciously?

Currently consuming: Harry Browne, Free Domain Radio; JT Gatto and Holt; Wii U

No, none. What makes you ask?

No, none.

What makes you ask? (genuinely interested) :)

tasmlab's picture

There is an emotional dimension to Paul

I was asking because I had a little confusion over the overall 'Ron Paul experience', both personally and seeing others who had a 'Paul fever' stronger than my own. This was especially clear after the primary election was unwinnable and people started posting pretty far-fetched hail mary scenarios for winning and even Penthouse-letters-to-the-editor style fan fantasy.

It occurred to me that the Paul phenom was beyond ideas. The emotional connection is likely why, for example, Walter Block has multi-year outrage against Molyneax and why Molyneax has been all but wiped from LRC, despite Stef being one of the movement's brightest thinkers. Stef dared to be critical of Paul.

I'm guessing that if you previously had an emotional connection to the Dr. you would have made your case to Paul supporters differently, like not calling them names in the title of your post. But then if you want to appeal to anybody, it's probably not polite to start with the namecalling anyways.

Peace!

Currently consuming: Harry Browne, Free Domain Radio; JT Gatto and Holt; Wii U

probably because you seem like a dumped girlfriend.

just guessing.

What particular

What particular characteristics of my message are you associating with a dumped girlfriend?

Why do you say girlfriend and not boyfriend? Smacks of chauvinism.

Are you implying that tenacity and enthusiasm are negatives?

I am no Ron Paul worshipper, but this article is just wrong!

Ron Paul did not serve government, he served his people---that's why we all supported him.

Government will always be needed on this wicked place we call earth. The more virtuous the people, the smaller and less intrusive the government. The more wicked the people, the bigger the government grows. God spells it out clearly in His word.

Pro 28:2 For the transgression of a land many are the princes thereof: but by a man of understanding and knowledge the state thereof shall be prolonged.

Christians should not be warmongers! http://www.lewrockwell.com/vance/vance87.html

1. Did Ron Paul serve the

1. Did Ron Paul serve the people that disagreed with him? The ones that didn't vote for him? Did he serve them by supporting theft and violence perpetrated on them?

2. Your conclusion is based upon the unproven (and by definition unproveable) assumption that humans have a 'nature', and (because your Bible tells you so) that it is 'wicked'. This is demonstrable false. The fact is that whatever the level of virtue of a given population, government cannot work.

You should watch this for a nice long relaxed argument of just this point:-

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XHpM9GmZkPw&feature=plcp

and yes ron paul served all the people--

he did what was right whether or not anyone agreed. too long a point to argue with an atheist. sorry.

Christians should not be warmongers! http://www.lewrockwell.com/vance/vance87.html

Non sequitur

Non sequitur