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November 24th, 2021

“No Stream Rises Higher Than Its Source…”

The title of this post is a quote of Frank Lloyd Wright’s that I particularly like. You find it really applies to a lot of political and religious movements. The Southern Baptists being one I’m most familiar with, having grown up in a Baptist (Yankee) household. But once upon a time I had one of those adolescent flings with something I’d become convinced held the answer to, well, Everything.

You hear the word spoken a lot in certain circles: Libertarian. This Salon article is worth a read about that…

Here’s why economist Brad DeLong believes libertarianism is essentially a form of white supremacy

Libertarianism “is a Frankenstein’s monster” that got its power from resistance to the Civil Rights Movement…

From the article…

In 2014 poll, Pew Research found that 14 percent of Americans said they identified as libertarians, but only 11 percent identified as libertarians and correctly identified what the term means, that is, “someone whose political views emphasize individual freedom by limiting the role of government.”

Even among this group, though, “true” libertarians seem hard to find…

Like looking for genuine collectible coins in a Franklin Mint store. 

I considered myself a libertarian back in the late ‘70s. I worked the petition drives to get candidates on the ballot. I went to meetings. I subscribed to all the periodicals…Inquiry…Reason…Libertarian Review. And I can tell you that the number of people who say they’re libertarian is much Much larger than the number of people who actually are. Also, that a lot of John Birchers glommed onto it as a way to advocate the dismantling of minority rights without looking like a bunch of angry old racists.

It was Reagan giving me a taste of what a libertarian society would really look like, and seeing how many of my fellow libertarians were more about states rights than individual rights (there was much joy in the ranks when the Supreme Court upheld the sodomy laws) that opened my eyes to what the party was really about, and that idealistic kids like me were just their useful tools, that drove me out. DeLong has it absolutely right here. I was there. I saw it.

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