Friday, September 3, 2010

The Problem With Libertarians

In The Iraq War, Donny Baseball sums up one of my biggest objections to libertarianism:
One of my biggest problems with orthodox libertarianism is its blindness or dismissiveness to the great importance of geo-politics and global strategy. Libertarians disdain the fact that governments spend time and resources arranging and moving the pieces on the global chess board, but it is an absolute necessity to protect and expand the footprint where the ideals of classical liberalism can thrive on this Earth. There is no other way to preserve the conditions that allow representative government and free enterprise to raise living standards and advance civilization than to be pro-active in setting those conditions. The alternative is to allow the advance of economically statist, morally retrograde, and illiberal systems over more of the Earth's territory. The default state of the world is poverty and oppression in the absence of government systems predicated on preserving individual rights and fostering prosperity. Those systems need to be protected and strengthened relative to the alternatives. That activity is the chess board maneuvering, sometimes called 'the great game,' that libertarians seem to reject under the principal of limited government. Yet paradoxically, it is a certain level of global engagement (don't get me wrong, it can be taken too far) that keeps all-consuming government at bay and secures the conditions for the limited government that we so desire here at home.

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