[ExI] libertarians and inheritance

Brent Neal brentn at freeshell.org
Tue May 5 16:41:15 UTC 2009

On 5 May, 2009, at 11:21, John K Clark wrote:

> "Dan" <dan_ust at yahoo.com>
>> My statement was and remains that you're _not_ a libertarian [.] The
>> ability to draw conclusions about some point of view does not mean  
>> one is
>> an adherent of that point of view.
> So according to you to be a supporter of an idea a belief in good  
> results
> derived from that idea is not sufficient to become a true adherent.  
> You
> think there must be something else, something more important than the
> conclusions derived from a point of view. I can't imagine what that
> something else could be except faith.
> I don't have faith in anything and think it's a vice not a virtue.  
> If I come
> to the conclusion that one of my ideas is not as productive as a  
> competing
> idea I have absolutely no loyalty and will switch sides in one  
> second flat.
> If somebody has a better argument than I have I will drop my old  
> point of
> view and embrace the new one as my own. I'm a libertarian but even  
> that
> doesn't get a free pass, it has to earn its way.

I think the more salient issue at hand is that Dan's argument is  
predicated on some Platonic ideal of a libertarian, or perhaps some  
ideal purity of libertarianism. Having been to LP meetings in my  
sordid youth and then looking at the standard deviation of the mean in  
a wide variety of ideologies and beliefs, I will assert that there is  
no good objective litmus test for libertarianism. Or fascism. Or  
Extropianism, for that matter.

People have the capability of defining themselves and the right to do  
so as they see fit. Penis-measuring about who is more libertarian than  
whom is ultimately the same sort of logic that ends with  
fundamentalism in other religions. :)


Brent Neal, Ph.D.
<brentn at freeshell.org>

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