Skip to main content

Paradigm Shift

The old guard built this movement. Without them, it’s unlikely any of us would be aware that a liberty movement even exists! This alone is an accomplishment. And the history books will look favorably upon them for it - & justifiably so. Their preference for a political approach however, has been ineffective at bringing about liberty (just take a look around, if you’re still permitted). Progress hasn’t just stagnated, we’ve been losing ground rapidly. It’s time for a paradigm shift. One that moves away from the old way of thinking & instead focuses on teaching people how to opt out of corrupt systems & to build competing, market-based alternatives to state institutions. Like sports teams, ideas also get tired & worn out, old players retire, & new, fresh ideas take their place. In the world of ideas, when paradigm shifts occur, the old guard resists the change at first, but eventually comes around to seeing the benefits and virtues of the new way. This is how progres

Limits to self-defense?

Where do we draw the line for what is acceptable self-defense? When can we start acting in self-defense? That, plus recollections of an interesting conversation at a local pub over the subject of a brightly yellow book and some ponderings on physical removal-memes is on today's menu. Bon Appetit! | Alex Utopium

One of my dearest hobbies is reading books and one of my preferred spots to read them is in a local pub- There is something very special with the ambient noises of the pub, to me: The clinking glasses, bar stool scraping, low-volume conversation. Its harmonious to me. The atmosphere can turn a trashy book to at least a readable experience by the virtue of the surroundings.

This one time a guy sat down next to me and started asking questions about the book I was writing down notes from, in the company of a huge cup of coffee. It was the color of the book (extremely yellow, screaming for attention) that drew his eyes in the first place, but it was the title of the book that got him interested. "Homemade guns and homemade ammo? Isn't that illegal?"

"It's not illegal to read about, no", was my distracted reply, maybe with more annoyance in my voice than intended. I was, after all, trying to write notes and he was distracting from that.

Putting my pen away, signaling I was open for a discussion. We had a talk for about fifteen minutes, give or take, that I tried to steer in the direction of self-defense: We should be able to defend ourselves, right?

He took my bait, responding: "Well, that's true, but only the police should have guns!". Noting, of course, the irony in that here in Norway, not even that is solidified - Police officers need to ask for permission to get their handguns out of a safety deposit box in the police cruiser to prevent a crime in progress, unless given permission beforehand (as protection against a specific threat, known prior to being dispatched out on the streets).

The obvious follow-up question is of course "Why?", followed by some more talk, mainly about how dangerous guns are in the wrong hands and so forth. The usual stuff. The conversation was eventually ended when he had to go back to his buddies at a table further in the pub, but he left me with a sinking realisation. The whole conversation, he didn't include himself at all as a potential weapon owner (he could outsource protection, I assume) - What appeared to be the most important thing for this guy was that nobody else was armed.

That realization made it crystal clear to me that you can bring forth the moral argument all you want, it won't affect this kind of person. We agreed that everyone should be able to defend themselves, but using a force multiplier  (a gun) equalize the terms between aggressor and victim? No way, man. Arguably, you can't be for self-defense in that case since not everybody is physically equipped to fend off others, so to restrict access to defensive tools, you are fine with restricting a portion of the population from defending themselves.

"Among the many misdeeds of the British rule in India, history will look upon the Act depriving a whole nation of arms as the blackest." - Mahatma Gandhi

 To most Libertarians, this is nothing new, but it is important to underline that last part - Because the result of your action is more important than your words, so it's healthy to put a spotlight on hypocrisy whenever you can.

For us Libertarians, there is something in the borderland, the gray zone of self-defense aspects, that might pose a greater disagreement amongst us. It is digitally manifested in the Physical Removal and Helicopter Ride memes, but those are merely a comedic version of something more serious.

But, its a fairly wide range of ideas that get crammed under the same umbrella. From Liberty Machine's interview with Curt Doolittle where he stated he wanted to "murder socialists on an industrial scale", to Hans-Herman Hoppe's arguments that to keep a libertarian society intact you need to 'physically remove' anyone threatening private property as a concept (examples given is communists and democrats).

A much vaguer Murray Rothbard suggests in his essay Program for Right-wing populism that bums get kicked out from the streets - But its hard to tell if he means the public or private property, a future society or the society of lunchtime tomorrow?

How wide can you cast out the concept of self-defense? When is it right to apply it? Is a credible threat to you and your property enough? Can you only stop aggression when it is right at your doorstep? It is a sticky subject.

Perhaps I'm looking too hard through the lens of today, where I'd be properly screwed if a band of Antifa-likes would gain parliamentary power and ushered me into some nightmarish Marxist state of being.  Maybe this is a trivial issue in a free Ancapistan? The skeptic in me is a skeptic, though.

Scandinavian anti-establishment blogger, editor for the Utopium Blog. Counter-economics, agorist-separatism and Free Market advocate.


  1. This is my problem with Libertarians - the NAP is nonsensical and meaningless. one man's self defence is another man's murder.
    My take is: no body or group of people has any more right to prosecute violence than any other. I am entitled but not obliged to to counter evil with as much force as I deem necessary. If you can't recognise evil then you are part of the problem and deserve no quarter given.

    1. The NAP is, funnily enough, sort of a social contract theory which many libertarians I know despise - Except in the case of NAP. I am more leaning on the (David) Friedmanian school of thought, ie that we give each other sovereignty and accept laws in clusters in a Free World and the market will decide which of those are the most successful (have most subscribers).

      That leads to bargaining with people outside your cluster and, as a last resort, violence if someone else wants to (in your view) use force upon your cluster.

  2. IMO in a free society the right to defend property would always be retained by the individual but in all likelihood be delegated voluntarily to PDAs or insurance companies, as Bob Murphy outlines in Chaos Theory.


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Dear America, I Won't Be Locking Down

Dear America I won’t be locking down, not that I ever did. And I don’t care about the arbitrary mandates of a geriatric pedophile with a history of dementia. I don’t wear the muzzle or social distance. Nor do I have any plans to start. I won’t be avoiding friends or family & I actively seek out large public gatherings. Needless to say, it’ll be a cold, cold day in hell before the government injects my living body with a foreign substance or keeps me from my family on Thanksgiving Day. You see, I knew from day one that COVID was a hoax. More specifically, when videos of Chinese people dropping dead in the streets were being broadcasted by Western propaganda outlets, it became clear this was essentially a soft coup. As a general rule, anything coming from the CCP should immediately be assumed to be intentionally falsified for malicious purposes. Friends, what has happened is obvious. The political cartel has manufactured a virus because fear enables them to seize power & furthers

In Defense of Left Libertarianism

Marx was right, but Marxism is stupid. Let me explain… Marx’s fundamental critique that the working class is being exploited by the upper class is true. This is so inherently obvious in the modern political climate that I find it bewildering the notion even needs defending. In fact, today, the working class has been so thoroughly exploited that they can now be more accurately termed the working poor . Go to Manhattan, the neoliberal shithole from whence I came - and try to find a worker who both lives & resides there. You can’t. There aren’t any. The elites have successfully used a combination of high taxes & a denial of civil liberties to expel the working class from their homes. Trust me, I am among the expelled. The anarcho-capitalist habit of turning a blind eye to class theory is a grave mistake, as it sweeps real concerns under the rug. In doing so they dismiss the plight of an enormous contingent of the public - labor. No, we agorists aren’t seeking an abandonment of met

Against the LP

Agorism has no room for politics.  The Agora & political institutions can coexist no more than a state of marriage & bachelorhood can coexist. Counter-economics & politicking are likewise mutually exclusive. Frankly, it should seem obvious that engaging in politics & anti-politics is contradictory & self-defeating. It wouldn’t make much sense to get chemo in the morning & smoke a pack of Marlboros in the evening, so why would one seek to destroy the government today, and empower it tomorrow?  Just as a chemist who tests a logically inconsistent theory will experience failure, so too will social scientists & revolutionaries experience failure when they pursue inconsistent theories.  Note that without exception - every gain made by the liberty community in the past 15 years has been produced by the counter-economy & that no other faction of our movement can claim even a small victory . Here’s a brief look at the scoreboard: Whereas the LP & small gov