Sunday, July 9, 2017

On Internal Libertarian Intellectual Battles

At the post, BRUTAL Gary North versus Bionic Mosquito, an anonymous commenter writes:
We are a small enough group as it is. Against the banksters, the Fed, the military industrial complex, and all the rest of the villains of the world, we'll let ourselves become fragmented by academic discussions of ideas and sleep-inducing blog posts?
Although the North-Bionic battle is not exactly intellectual, I believe the commenter is missing a number of points.

Our "small group" is not going to shift the banksters, the Fed or the military industrial complex, even if all our factions gathered together in a hotel suite at an Embassy Suites, sang kumbaya and drank each other's blood in some sort of solemn attempt at unity.

We are in an intellectual battle, and there shouldn't be limits to seeking truth, even if it means battling other libertarian factions.

This does not mean that we should never form alliances with outside groups, or various other wings of the libertarian thought, to attempt various ideological and practical advances, but if we are seeking truth let's battle it out to get to truth. 

It should be noted that although communist/socialist thinking permeates the world, it is not because there was a unified communist-socialist front at the highest levels.

Remember, Stalin had Trotsky killed by an ice-ax-wielding assassin. That does not sound particularly unifying to me.

And if you want to read the circus act of American Trotsky factions, a story that should be turned into a comedy series on HBO, read The History of American Trotskyism 1928-1938 by James P. Cannon.

Intellectual battles are good, they sharpen the mind and prepare us for bigger battles.

Veterans for Peace Indianapolis added a comment also in support of a unified libertarian front theme drawing me in as an example:
I don't hold against...RW failing to name actual Austrian-lites to the point I don't read them. I wish we could all get along at least in this small virtual neighborhood, similar to BM's fantasy one, that we belong.
This is a curious attack since by not naming Austrian-lites, I am avoiding a battle. So VOPI seems to prefer that I name specific Austrian-lites, which would increase battles?

BTW, my reason for not naming Austrian-lites is because, to paraphrase James Comey, it is a hill I choose not to battle on. As long-time readers are aware, I rarely comment in the comments, my guns are aimed at larger targets. (There is serious ammo being loaded right now.)

I have made very clear the characteristics of an Austrian-lite. Why should I spend my time battling them individually if they can't even get the understanding of the business cycle correct?

If someone wants to make a reasoned response to what I identify as the weaknesses of the Austrian-lite view, I shall respond, but for the most part, I have more important other attacks that are about to be launched.


1 comment:

  1. I am opposed to the fragmenting to the point people say I will never read that guy again because one view or "mistake". Of course people should hash out ideas, but to completely disengage seems unwarranted in these cases. My problem with your not naming Austrian-lite names is then that person/group might have a hard time determining whether they should respond. If they are committed Austrian-lites, rather than misinformed Austrians, then you might help prevent some from being drawn into that view. And you could help straighten out the misinformed ones.

    Basically, I am opposed to shutting off people from debate, whether by building a virtual wall or strawmannig to the point the readers and other writers might not be able to make informed and intellectual decisions.

    Eric Morris