Liberty Sounds Good -- So Good That I Bet You'll Vote For It!
Info: IJ.org Page
You have a curious mission, but not one that differs all that much from other Libertarian organizations. "...to secure economic liberty, school choice, private property rights, freedom of speech and other vital individual liberties, and to restore constitutional limits on the power of government." The one major difficulty here is that "private property rights" is in conflict with every single one of those other values. This is corroborated by at least a few thousand years of human history. Freedom of education and speech, limitations on the authority of government, etc., etc., all have been sapped and destroyed by one major entity: the Lords of Capitalism, whether they're Capitalists in this age or Aristocrats in another.
Freedom of Speech? Then why did the British Supreme Court rule in 2005 in McDonald's v. Morris & Steel that it is a crime to say that fast food is unhealthy? Why did one judge and two lay judges make a decision on a scientific matter that thousands and thousands of scientists have already covered? Why was McDonald's following, harassing, and spying on scientists and activists who wanted to say the simple truth? Why was it a crime to say "bovine-fed beef, full of artificial preservatives and sugars, is not healthy"? Basic freedom of speech! If there was a way for Capitalists to make money off of it, the courts would declare that the world was flat.
In the end, it turned out that government had nothing to do with it -- the judges, in passing their judgments, were acting with as much responsibility as executioners. They could protest individually all that they wanted, but they would simply get replaced if their masters thought it fit. What would you expect the politicians of the Labour Party to do, when McDonald's bribed them? What would you, as a politician, say to "Take this money, and if you don't, we'll give three times as much to your competitor next election"?
The state merely forms men and women into the shape of exploitable commodities. And it's like the executioner -- I'm sure that they're thinking, too, "If I refuse to kill this person, they may look at me as the next person who must be executed." The state is tyranny, but nobody wants to use tyranny except Capitalism.
The Hapsburg Empire of Germany, which lasted for centuries and was only crushed in the final round of World War 1 -- did this tyranny live on anything except Capitalism? They often don't mention that they had elective parliaments in history books, because that would make us think of them as somewhat more democratic. Of course, the problem is, only Capitalists could gain power; there wasn't even a restriction solely to Germans, but simply, solely to property-owners. Again, equality before the law is forbidden, because it profits Capitalism and the few on top. ("The Modern History of Germany," by Marshall Dill, Jr., University of Michigan, page 126.)
Take Spain, another ancient Empire of the Old World that has a long history of Capitalism influence within government. Conservatives in government pass laws that allow peasants to keep land that their family has been working for hundreds of years as slaves -- and, next election, after those peasants built up huge amounts of wealth, the very same Conservatives repeal the law, and seize the peasants belongings, like some grain-seizure policy of the USSR. This has been one of the common and typical practices of Spanish Capitalism for centuries. ("The Spanish Civil War: Domestic Crisis or International Conspiracy?" edited by Gabriel Jackson, page 28.)
In France, in the year 1500, when serfs when looking at their freedom, the French King prohibited workers unions, or any type of "companionship" among the working class. ("A Modern History of France," by Albert Guerard, University of Michigan, page 131.) The reign of Louis XIV continued this trend, with the king giving "showers of gold" to the most prestigious of aristocrats and Capitalists. (Page 182.) Even in the French Revolution, which was a so-called "godless uprisings of communists" according to most modern accounts, their constitution made private property "inalienable." And, coupled with the right to private property for the rich, is a prohibition of it for the poor: workers' organizations, again, are prohibited. (Page 257.)
In Italy, during the 20's, the Fascist government defended Capitalism just as the monarchies of antiquity. Labor unions were prohibited, unless their representative was either a Capitalist or a Fascist. ("Neither Bread Nor Liberty," edited by Francis Keene, page 222.) Allow me to describe the "traditional expeditions" of Italy's state in exploring the countryside: police and nationalists "would rush to the buildings of the Chamber of Labor, the Syndicate, of the Co-operative, or to the People's House; break down the doors; hurl out furniture, books, or stores into the street; pour petrol over them, and in a few moments there would be a blaze. Anyone found on the premises would be severely beaten or killed, and the flags were burnt or carried off as trophies." (Page 27.) George Bush threatened to do this in 2002 against a union in Oregon -- which, according to US labor law, is apparently legal.
Russia's another budding example of the collusion between private-property owners and the state's tempered violence. There, the Tsar was treated crudely and disrespectfully by the "Boyar" or "Gentry" class: essentially, Capitalists. ("A History of Russia," by Nicholas Riasanovsky, Fourth Edition, page 170.) The state existed solely as a private tyranny for the wealthy landowners: "Landlords obtained further the right to transfer serfs from one estate to another and, by one of Elizabeth's Laws, even to exile delinquent serfs to Siberia and to fetch them back..." (Page 250.) During the reign of Alexander I, everyone was granted rights according to how much property they possessed, which means that it should go without saying: "...they clearly did not own enough to participate in politics." (Page 305.)
Communist China is a delightful little example. The Chinese people are split between two areas: mainland China and the island of Formosa, or respectively "China" and "Taiwan." In China, there are Capitalists and Nationalists, they have their own parties, and they have their own chair offices. "Opposition" political parties are legal. In Taiwan, where Capitalism rules, Communist Parties are illegal. More than that, the island's industry is almost wholly owned by almost everyone within the Taiwanese government. Exploitation, domination, and control led to 1947: machineguns, in the streets, firing on unarmed crowds of the Taiwanese people. ("An Introduction to Chinese Politics," by Harold C. Hinton, page 288.) If you believe in liberty, I'm curious why you choose Nationalist-Capitalist governments over Communist ones.
Hundreds of years of history, even thousands, effecting billions and billions of people -- the people of China and Russia, Germany and France, Italy and Britain. Just look up their histories, and tell me where you find a government that promises "private property" and, at the same time, a just, equal, liberty-based society? If you can find equality under Capitalism, I can find a lie in a history book. Yet, I do not think anything I've said here is considered "controversial," or "questionable." These are basic, commonly accepted facts of history.
In trying to oppose the governments tyrannical and overarching reach into the lives of the citizenry, you decide to defend private property. The problem, as you should know by this point, is that private property is the basis of all established tyrannies. No army was ever amassed by someone who didn't have enough to feed themselves, except the peasant revolts of underdeveloped nations -- and those are not armies in the traditional sense at all. But, then again, there is a reason that makes me suspect that all of this is new information to you: and that is your use of the phrase "Libertarian."
The word Libertarian was coined by Joseph Dejacques in the 1800's. In his opinion, it means someone who wants to abolish government as much as they want to abolish Capitalism -- Dejacques was a Communist and an Anarchist. But, you seem to have taken the dead philosopher's words for yourself, just like Lenin declaring "Land for All!" because that's what his opponents shouted. "Private property" doesn't exist within the realm of Libertarianism, or at least, Libertarianism seeks its destruction. Again, very basic history, that anyone anywhere can validate for themselves.
Dejacques formulated a plan and an ideal, though. Tyranny and oppression are funded only by Capitalist development. If we want to get rid of tyranny and oppression, we must destroy Capitalism -- we must rid ourselves of the systems of exploitation and economic control. In a society where all Capitalism is unjust, the just individual is a Socialist. This is a turn of phrase on Thoreau's quote, "Under a government which imprisons unjustly, the true place for a just man is also a prison." ("Civil Disobedience," 1849.) Even Thoreau knew that property and slavery are involved accomplices.
In short, "freedom of speech," civil rights, the right to organize, the right to be treated equally, etc., etc., all of this has been threatened and destroyed by government -- only because Capitalists were willing to fund the state's efforts in this direction. And, for at least the last 2,000 years, there hasn't been a Democratic government existed side-by-side with Capitalism. I beg you to show me one nation whose history diverges from this.
Thank you-- I've read your material, and I know the actual meaning of Libertarianism. If you could respond, and tell me how you support "Libertarian philosophy" and "private property," I'd love to hear it. I patiently await your response.