Saturday, June 24, 2017

The Intellectual Battle vs The Street Battle

Some comments at the On Destroying Intellectual Inferiors post and my replies.

Shimshon writes:
Robert, the only reason the bike lock street thug was caught was because of the kind of people you bemoan. The "weaponized autism" as we call it. You would've tsk-tsk'ed that we should avoid all such confrontations altogether while the perp got away with his violence.
You don't get it and you are clueless.
Where have I ever objected to hunting down criminals?

Talk about a strawman!

The debate is about disrupting others' private events.

Shimsohn again:
I can see you in Poland after the Nazi invasion, bemoaning any sort of attempt to fight back. Resistance is just stooping to the Nazis' level, correct?
Fighting a Nazi invasion is all about one's skill set. It made more sense for Mises to leave Austria and Wilhelm Ropke to leave Germany. Would you seriously have preferred Mises to stay in Vienna rather than escape and write from a safe loaction some of the most pro-freedom works ever?

On the other hand, the remarkable Ludwig Erhard somehow was able to survive in Germany without giving up his free market principles.

I could see others fighting in the resistance by blowing up the train tracks that were taking Jews to Auschwitz.

But what does this have to do with disrupting plays here in America? Is this your plan, disrupt lefty events, to convert lefties to libertarianism?

Shimsohn again:
Now that I think of it, I am certain that Rothbard himself would have applauded the common man reaction to these totalitarian nutjobs
Well, that is because you don't know much about Rothbard, Rothbard split with street protesters.

Walter Block wrote in 2013:
 Murray had worked hard on getting that [1969 New York Libertaina]conference going; this might have been the very first such conference of the modern libertarian era. Karl [Hess] led about half of the participants away to a protest at Fort Dix. Murray’s view was that the intellectual battle was crucial to our movement. Karl was then into what Murray derisively dismissed as “seizing a street”: engaging in violent confrontations with cops without much care or concern for the intellectual battle. I think this was the beginning of the split between Murray and Karl.
Shimsohn then writes:
They are ineducable. They are literally incapable of learning. They are insane. And you keep trying to be civil and logical with them. Trying to educate the ineducable. That makes you insane too.
Where do I ever say "they" (the masses) must be the focus of education, As I have pointed out, Keynes to Ayn Rand to Hayek recognized that all societal battles are won by a few at a high intellectual level. Rand at her West Point address said the masses learn by a sort-off, and this is her word, "osmosis."

It is silly to do physical battle with left of the IQ curve people. Win the intellectual battle and you win them.

Shimsohn again:

First quoting me,
"This is a long game, a very long game, that is not going to be won in the next election cycle or the one after that."
And then writing:
Correct. The Reconquista took 700 years.
I guess this is supposed to be sarcastic but the reality is there is going to be no Private Property Society or any other kind of libertarian society any time soon. If you really don't like the intellectual battle for the battle itself and are expecting a victory soon, you are going to be very disappointed.

This is really only a positive battle for those who enjoy the rush of the intellectual smashing of the opposition.

I hasten to add that on occasion it can be valuable to wage some sort of battle for a specific important strategic purpose but this is far from the broad "Let's adopt the left's tactics and just battle them on the streets all the time.."



  1. The Browns are just itching to fight the Reds in the streets just like the Weimar Republic. Don't cave in. Good response.

    1. To quote the famous line in the movie War Games; "The Winning move is not to play"

    2. Or to quote another movie as I did with the earlier post, "stupid is as stupid does".

      If you see people acting stupidly, why act stupidly yourself? If you do this, you are not battling dumb ideas, but rather absorbing them and making them your own. Then you are an idiot just like them.

  2. Is the intellectual battle being won?

  3. It was the wickedness of Golum and the mercy of Bilbo that destroyed the ring, not the courage or prowess of Frodo and Sam.

    1. Yet, to get to the place where the ring could be destroyed, many small and large battles were fought. Many of those fights were far away.
      And to continue with the fiction, the Rangers fought battles, when the increasing darkness was just a rumor of thing happening in distant places.
      All the while, others sought knowledge in hidden libraries to, later, inform others.
      The result? War was at hand. Blow the horn, light the fires. The fate of Middle Eatth and rule of man lies on the balance

  4. Mises (and others) was correct to flee when they could. He, like you and Tom and most of the others firing right, was an intellectual. Duh.

    Look, Robert, I'll dispense with the argumentum ad nauseum.

    There are lots of different opportunities for battle, alas, against a common enemy.

    Why mock those who engage differently? Mocking, calling erstwhile allies in this war "childish," or their actions "counterproductive," are acts of friendly fire.

    I laugh when Tom claims to fire left 24/7, when he himself engages in criticizing those on the right who do things he doesn't like. Tom, that's firing right. When you (and Bob) do so, your followers, often less thoughtful, imbibe the lesson, and well, follow, piling on.

    That's all. Seriously. You are not aiding the cause of freedom and liberty by attacking those who are on your side. Even the British and Americans, as close as they were as allies, disagreed on strategy in WW2. They had the good sense to keep those disputes discrete. You don't. Shame.

    By the way, those antics clearly do work, to great effect:

    Let a thousand sobbing actors bloom!

  5. "If you see people acting stupidly, why act stupidly yourself? If you do this, you are not battling dumb ideas, but rather absorbing them and making them your own. Then you are an idiot just like them."

    The war of yours against "dumb ideas" is as stupid as the war on terrorism. The only idiocy is displayed by you. Crashing a stupid play is a tactic, not an idea. It is employed by my allies in battle against those who espouse dumb ideas. It is one tactic among many. It is not for everyone, and no one who tries it says it is. When the left, who started this practice, stop crashing our events, the tactic will cease to be useful, and I predict it will stop entirely. Until then, it serves a purpose. This seems to be a nuance that you, and Tom, and Bob, et al, are incapable of grasping.

    1. You really don't see that by supporting crashing events to prevent your events from being crashed, you become now better than those you say you're fighting? Is this so hard to understand? You can justify it all you want, but if you stand on principle, you wouldn't do this or support this.

      The second you started supporting these tactics, you've lost part of the moral high ground, and you've taken one more step to becoming that which you say you hate. With regards to Tom and Bob and whoever not understanding and firing in the wrong direction, you and those who support this took a big step to the left when you did it. In that regard, Tom is still firing in the right direction.

      "Crashing a stupid play is a tactic, not an idea. It is employed by my allies in battle against those who espouse dumb ideas." -- You sound like a Berkley smellster here.

  6. While the cuckservative right (including libertarians) cluck about being "better" or "above" the evil left, first women's bathrooms were opened up to perverts, and now bathrooms are being rendered irrelevant everywhere (as cities like Denver decriminalize public defecation and the like due to "cultural sensitivity"). Normal people, not conservative and libertarian autists, care about this, and don't care about gentility. Moral high ground? It's a pathetic joke not even worthy of a response. Um, we didn't start it. The left did. Start nothing, finish everything, and all that. We can't speak freely? Then we won't let them either. If you can't reason with them, which more thoughtful types like Tom and Bob actually acknowledge is true, then how the $%&^ do you get them to stop? You don't, unless you fight back.

    Bob, best prepare now for Tenderloin spreading its tentacles ever further, encroaching into your own neighborhood. The stench of urine and shit will permeate into your clothing soon enough as the rabble spread.

    1. Defend private property and speech = fighting back.

      Disrespecting private property, shutting down speech = you just lost.

      But yes, let's all decide we shall, in our efforts to destroy the unreasonableness of the left, become just as unreasonable as them.

      You sound just as irrational, just as "uneducable", and just as triggered as they are.

      We can only hope that in your quest to preserve bathroom sanctity, which is a non problem and hysterical alt right click bait nonsense, and between LARPing as a knight on the walls of Constantinople, you might come to realize how ridiculous and foolish you sound. Bathrooms, you guys are just so brave. Now I get it.

    2. @incognost, You are obviously not a woman who has experienced the pleasure of sharing a bathroom with freak men who think they're women. Or dealt with the shit left behind by third worlders who don't know how to use toilets. It's a non-problem just like the Tenderloin is a non-problem...for those who don't live or pass through there.

      "Defend private property and speech = fighting back."

      Every single one of you autists says this, while clearly not understanding the meaning of the word "defend."

      Of course I'm educable. I used to think like you. I changed, because I accepted reality wasn't what I thought it was.