I have added a new link to the Montana blog roll, The Libertarian Realist, run by a guy named Brad Trun. I listened to him for a brief while yesterday and was impressed with two things, one that he followed Ayn Rand and outgrew her, and two, that he chose to reside in Missoula, Montana. He could have wacky ideas too, for all I know, but what the hell.
I generally don’t truck with libertarians, as they have perverted that noble philosophy into a road to fascism with their economic ideas. But in terms of individual liberty, freedom from government oppression, and “pursuit of truth, wherever it leads,” the guy has it going, in my mind.
What is left for those who call themselves libertarians to understand is that the “market freedom” they so admire really means this: When one person or entity has power over another in the marketplace, there shall be no restraints to the exercise of that power.
If that means you are a utility customer and there is only one electric supplier, that supplier has legal right to gouge you for all you are worth. That is the freedom they are talking about – the utility supplier’s, not yours. You have none.
Further, if you are poor and unskilled, there should be no barrier to paying you the lowest possible dollar to employ you for however many hours the employer desires under any conditions he decides, because remember: Even though you have no freedom, the employer does, and his market freedom is the only freedom that matters to faux-libertarians.
In the end, market freedom leads, naturally, to slavery and sweat shops. The idea that the marketplace is a magical place where all ills are fixed by competition is, in a word, utter and complete bullshit.
That was four words, I know.