When writing about current events from the libertarian anarchist point of view, whether politically, Geo-politically, or even rhetorically focused, a difficulty arises. When the mainstream media and the blogosphere are focused on the problems of Statism, as expected the debate is centered on Statist solutions. Speaking only for myself, as a libertarian anarchist, it becomes very difficult to apply libertarian principles to the average popular political debate. Especially when it comes to issues that only arise under a State dominated world, such as immigration. I wrote this article, discussing an older essay by Walter “Don’t Call Me Dr.” Block regarding immigration. He rightly pointed out that borders are arbitrary, and without them there is no such thing as immigration, or emigration, it all becomes simply, migration.
Accepting and writing about this theory, as I think many libertarian anarchists do, myself included, does not lend itself to a productive spreading of the message of Liberty. I assert this only because of evidence in my own life; I was brought to the message of liberty through thoughtful applications of libertarian political theory with regards to current events. The huge success of the Ron Paul awareness campaigns was based precisely upon his ability to do just that; He made libertarian theory apply to current issues. I think we can all agree it worked, Presidency be damned.
I am in no way suggesting that the brave and principled men and women who work tirelessly to spread the message of liberty should lay their principles aside. I am suggesting however that we put our heads together and work towards incorporating more libertarian theory into the mainstream. As any blogger knows, site traffic increases dramatically when this method is practiced. Mainstream Democrats and Republicans that might be interested in libertarian theory are more likely to read an article discussing the issues they feel are important, but from a libertarian point of view.
We must be honest with ourselves, there are many issues that ‘Mainstream Democrats and Republicans” (MD&R’s) feel are very important that are in fact merely a charade of distraction from the real issues. As libertarian anarchists we understand that the underlying problem in the majority of these issues is the State itself. However, the MD&R’s are unlikely to be persuaded based on the recent NSA leaks to abolish the State entirely on the theory that all governments are parasitic and doomed to tyranny. The minarchist libertarian position on government secrecy is appealing to everyone, including MD&R’s. That is: A government of, by and for the People is not entitled to secret courts, secret laws, and limitless surveillance without a warrant.
A libertarian anarchist does not sacrifice his principles by promoting minarchist libertarian applications to the Statist world we live in today. We must fight towards freedom, and excusing ourselves from the popular political debates based on strict anti-Statism in its purest form cannot help to spread the message of liberty.
Many libertarian anarchists would probably respond with an overwhelming pessimism that is hard to resist, and until recently I felt the same way. They might say, “The idea that the State’s dominance is so overwhelming that spreading the message of liberty at this point in history is futile”.
It is here that my mind has recently changed. I understand the overwhelming sense of dread when facing Leviathan head-on, seemingly alone. There are many within this movement that desire to leave the country, I am not one of those. I refuse to let a bunch of criminals that have probably never even visited my hometown, chase me out of the mountains I was born and raised in. You might call this a desire to “go down with the ship”, and you would be right. But in the meantime spreading the message of liberty is equivalent to building lifeboats. If we want to come out the other side of this sinking ship we call the State, we have to prepare the lifeboats of liberty.
- Adam Alcorn, Founder/Editor of the Humane Condition
Author can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on twitter @AdamBlacksburg