Cheering the Eternal Losers
Libertarians are basically people who have come to one basic realisation: government doesn’t work. This may seem like a rather superficial proposition. We must therefore make this bromide more precise.
The optimal state of a society, as we know from politics, is what we call a free society – where people ineract voluntarily. Any government intervention that deviates from this norm only makes things worse. There are two main reasons for this : the inherent failure of centralized systems, and the inevitably varying motivations of public workers. Government intervention cannot solve any problem, and has never solved any problem. Only private citizens and organisations can (not necessarily will – people can make different choices) solve problems.
It just keeps losing
This makes the current overwhelming support for military intervention in the wake of the WTC events rather puzzling. In fact, libertarians have pretty much been the only sensible voice in the whole debate, by demanding more civil liberties instead of restraining them for war and security.
The propaganda that is being vehiculed by the media and the government is the height of the absurd. George Bush, for example, describes the war as a combat between freedom and extremism. This is deluded at best – no one would propose the United States as a paragon of freedom. Yet American imperialism and patriotism is so strong that no one complains about the actions of the american military.
The fact in the United States (and in fact in the entire world) is that the government is a loser. As I have explained, governments do not solve any problem. The War on Drugs, on Poverty, and on pretty much every freedom under the sun, have all failed miserably – in fact, the government keeps experiencing setbacks. Most of its foreign wars have ended either in retreat, or without solving anything (World War 2 is a, somewhat dubious, exception). Likewise, the failure of the government to eradicate terrorism after more than 10 years of tax-funded war is eloquent.
No two ways about it, I am a pacifist – a true pacifist, who doesn’t hide under government intervention to promote peace. I promote peace in all areas of society, including the economy, social relations, foreign areas, and so on. Therefore I am not saying that all these wars are just – none of them are. I am pointing out that none of them have ever been won.
However, I will point out to you that there are certain things that governments are good at. Certainly they are good at finding new ways to suppress our freedom of choice. They are also very good at killing people. The laws of the american government alone kill unncessarily, on my calculations, more than thirty thousand people a year, on a conservative estimate. As such, it has some limited success at wars which involve killing lots of people (including its own citizens).
This demands the existence of a military apparatus entirely devoted to its government’s ambitions. And this is why the military domain is severely restricted. Foreign wars such as this one would not be as painful if private armies were allowed to exist. However, the government is not about to relinquish its grasp on the force of the cannon or the gun. It is its main tool.
Behind the curtain
I honestly cannot imagine the twisted state of mind that would lead to a desire of warfare. First of all, there is no war : no country has risen as an enemy of the Occidental world. George Bush and his cronies claim, although they seem to have no evidence that they are willing to present, that a small group of terrorists was behind the attack. Be that as it may, they are now obviously quite dead. There is simply no one to put on trial. We are attacking simple-minded innocents.
Mediatic and political propaganda has it that this is a war of “good against evil”, of “freedom against tyranny”, of “christianity against islam”. Nothing could be further from the truth.
However, with all the propaganda being put out by the american government, it is relatively easy to suppose the train of thought of a war supporter. They must, first of all, ignore all the failures of their own government, and expect that they will actually do something right for a change. They must also believe, and this is the hardest leap of all, that it will happen as they think, not as politicians, acting on pressure group warfare and political bribery, will decide. This is a problem because, even if one thinks that some people must die (for whatever emotional reason), politicians and generals will usually have different ideas.
The political motivation behind the war is general discontent, not to protect individual rights or defend the country. The US army is defending no one. Rather the contrary : by constantly intervening, they are only making the world’s vision of the United States even worse. Such is the nature of public intervention, as I pointed out, that it only makes things worse.
Mediatic and political propaganda has it that this is a war of “good against evil”, of “freedom against tyranny”, of “christianity against islam”. Nothing could be further from the truth. This propaganda, made easier by the fact that few know anything about Afghans or Islam, let alone their own country, hides the real motivations behind the curtain.
However, these motivations are still obvious. The first is that waging war will give him more support. Votes are the lifeblood of politicians – without them, they can’t stay in power. Bush had no choice if he wanted to be reelected later. He had to wage war, or face accusations of cowardice. And being a Republican, he was already predisposed to wag his penile dysfunction one way or another.
The second is political power. Wars are the best occasion to attack freedom, and this one is no exception – the creation of the Homeland Office and the possibilities of new police powers, national IDs, and so on, are all attractive ideas.
What is the reality about solving terrorism, however ? Contrarily to what the popular views say, solving problems is more than just throwing money or soldiers at it. As I pointed out in my other article about the WTC, I propose my six points for peace in order to stop permanently he threats of terrorism :
1. The end of interventionism : no more bases in foreign countries (pretty obvious).
2. End gun control (especially in planes).
3. Deregulation of the military sector.
4. End all public foreign aid. No country should steal money to explicitly support other states. As Jefferson said, “friend with all, ally with none”.
5. Promote global trade, as the foundation of world peace.
6. Make the assassination of foreign criminals legal again.
Inventing new bureaucraties will not change reality. We can stop terrorism by implementing concrete solutions to strenghten our freedom and home defense – nothing else. Warfare will, unfortunately, only make our situation worse