Mark Ames unearthed a 1970s-era guide for libertarians on how to con liberals into buying their bullshit:
I wouldn’t be the first to point out how embarrassingly easy it has been for rancid Koch libertarian front groups to convince those on the Left that they are all on the same team….What hasn’t been revealed until now, however, is how the libertarians got so good at fooling their lefty marks. For that you have to look back 35 years, to an amazing series of articles in the Koch brothers’ REASON magazine in which prominent libertarians lay out to a new generation of followers a playbook of “tricks” to fool earnest leftists, liberals and hippies into supporting their cause.
Special bonus Holocaust denial.
“Largely libertarian” congressional candidate calls for the execution of gays by stoning.
(OK, fairness compels me to acknowledge that no, most libertarians do not support this sort of thing. So consider this mocking the sorry state of the libertarian brand rather than the ideology itself).
“Silicon Valley Festival for Hipster Libertarians”, kill me now please
These geniuses named their thing “Lincoln Labs”, suggesting both noted big-government man Abraham Lincoln and the actual Lincoln Laboratory at MIT that does mostly DoD contract work.
I’ve been dealing with libertarians so long that I’m sort of used to them. That’s one reason I haven’t been keeping up this blog much, my senses have been dulled, nonsense doesn’t energize me like it used to. Occasionally a normal person will stumble on one in a position of respect and have the appropriate horrified response.
Bryan Caplan is someone I used to bother to track and comment on, because he exemplified the clueless/aspie aspect of this corner of reality. And of course, because he is not a nutcase, but a full professor at a major university and published author. If he was just a nut he wouldn’t be interesting, but he speaks for a powerful political and intellectual faction, and has the title to prove it, and the funding to keep spreading the message. That by definition makes him not a nut, which is a person with crazy ideas but no social standing to make them appear respectable.
I have some fondness for Silk Road, or at least the idea of Silk Road. The drug laws are stupid and evil, and making technological end-runs around them isn’t a bad thing per se. But of course:
DPR’s user “signature”…includes a link to the “Mises Institute” website…Moreover in certain forum postings, DPR has cited the “Austrian economic theory” and the works of Ludwig von Mises and Murray Rothbard – economists closely associated with the “Mises Institute” – as providing the philosophical underpinnings of Silk Road. (Ulbricht Criminal Complaint], p26)
So it follows as night follows day that the fellow who set it up is (a) an ego-addled libertardian, who (b) was not very competent at hiding his identity, and (c) is so dedicated to non-coerciveness that he openly advertised for a hit man to take out one of his employees, and bragged of having previously suborned another murder.
The undercover agent staged the employee’s torture and death, providing Ulbricht the evidence he desired along the way. Ulbricht, according the indictment, repeated that he was new at this, but didn’t think he’d made the wrong decision.
It’s hard to imagine a better argument for strong government and against libertarianism than the behavior of libertarians who temporarily gain the power to realize their repellent little fantasy lives.