Thursday, February 11, 2016

Too Early for Revolution:Thoughts on the Current Presidential Election Season

By Robert Wenzel

While at times it may be entertaining to watch the political circus move across the continent, here's a warning: Don't take this talk of revolution and populist revolt to seriously.

Yes, the masses are fed up but they have no clue as to what a sound replacement would be to the current establishment overlords.

Bernie Sanders is a social democrat, and even that is probably cover for his real hardcore central planning views. The support he is getting is clear indication that the masses do  not understand the evil that central planning is.

With Donald Trump, we have someone who does not appear to be anchored to any political philosophy. At time he sounds like Andrew Jackson but he most often sounds like Mussolini.

As Justin Raimondo puts it:
 Trump is an erratic personality, to say the least, and can hardly be trusted to be consistent in anything but his own egotism. His populist Jacksonian patter could just as easily veer from an inward-looking “isolationism” to an extroverted ultra-nationalist militarism if provoked – and from what I can see, it wouldn’t take much to provoke him. 
Trump and Sanders are not the kind of men around which a sound revolution toward liberty is going to be built. They would be merely a change in the style and focus of oppression.

The libertarian movement has come a  long way since the days when the entire movement could pretty  much fit in the living room of Joey and Murray Rothbard, but we are far, far away from a mass revolution that would move us seriously away from oppression.

This presidential election cycle is not going to do it.

What must be done is for libertarians to continue to study, debate, and intellectually challenge current central planning leanings in others. It is a battle that can be fought on may fronts. A battle that can be taken directly to the masses with sound, clear and powerful presentations of the libertarian ideal. It can be fought on a higher intellectual level by challenging the intellectuals who sell out for a cozy government or academic positions.

Everyone from the full time scholar to the passing commenter at blogs can play a role in this battle. We need liberty battalions. There are many to be moved to get the oppressors off our chest. It can not be done by simply cozying up to the populist cheerleaders surrounding Trump and Sanders. We must capture their minds and that of future populists and turn them into our shock troops. This is not an easy task, but it is the task that must be done.

Right now, it is too early for a libertarian revolution. The troops aren't there.



  1. The time for a libertarian revolution has passed.

    Libertarian immigration policy has killed it.

    We are not all the same.

  2. Excellent post RW, and on the money. A Libertarian Revolution has got to be for the hearts and minds, as Adams said the American Revolution was won. It's too bad that politically it seems we have taken a step back, but I don't like politicians anyway, they want to kill my kids. I think the "heavy hitter" libertarian blogs and websites are making the difference. Lew's blog, Mises, Tom Woods, RPI, you, BM,... The list is pretty big. I know of at least 30 people who are now Anarcho-Capitalist (lite) who changed just in the last year. Around 100 in the last 3 years. Right in my community. Several of them work for me. Yesterday I gave 5 books to one of my employees who asked me for something to read to "know what you know". Take advantage of the opportunities presented to you. It's a slow and at times frustrating process, but our time preference has to be that of winners, not easy gratification losers.

  3. I also favor an all of the above strategy but we need to prioritize our most successful method of growing the libertarian movement: Ron Paul style presidential runs. For all the great work we can do on lower levels, there's simply no matching the megaphone of presidential races paired with the radical idealism strategy that Ron Paul used. Such a strategy won't win majority votes for the foreseeable future, but it will help build the army we need to enact radical political change.

    1. And who is the next Ron Paul?

      I suspect there isn't one.

    2. Judge Napolitano is probably the most well-known figure within the liberty movement who could run. Rand blew his chance this time around. Whatever else may be said of Trump, he's at least moved the GOP's Overton Window on foreign policy in our direction.

  4. to "study, debate, and intellectually challenge" others is great, and noble, but right now the masses are pissed, largely ignorant, & unanchored in principle. They want red meat, and that is what the believe Trump will give them, so they will support him with gusto. You actually cant help but pity these poor naïve folks,. I think they're well-intentioned, but sort of like starving stray dogs or retarded children.