Libertarians are anarchists

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There is a reductio ad absurdum argument by the left, that Libertarians are all anarchists, or it would lead to anarchy. This is like saying anyone for a single social program wants complete Authoritarian Marxist Tyranny. There might be a few that far out on the bell curve, but they're not the norm of the movement, nor close. This also devolves into idiotry about "who would build the roads, schools, police". We had all of those back before we had an IRS and were far more Libertarian than most Libertarians today would want -- so it's an argument that appeals to the ignorant or partisan, not the informed. We can debate how extreme a Libertarian is, and whether they are an anarchist in Libertarian clothing (and there are a handful out there). But saying Libertarians are anarchists is like calling all Democrats rapists, just because Bill Clinton was one.


No, libertarianism isn't anarchy, nor is it close to it. These fallacies are often used to try to shut down discussions. When you hear things like, “who’d build the roads”, “you’d rather we had robber barons”, and “what about the cops and firemen”, and other straw-men arguments like that, you know the other side has lost rational part of the argument, and are now using logical fallacies like straw-men attacks to distract from the point.

First, there's no such thing as anarchy: watch 4 year olds on a playground. Within a few minutes, they'll decide on a game or create one -- with the corresponding rules to do so. The same with couples negotiating how their relationship will work. If you have two or more humans that can communicate, they'll start making rules for resource and work division, and poof: you don't have anarchy. You keep taking Billy's lunch money, and he'll pay Bruno to pummel you. Rules and justice/fairness are human nature, and no one is advocating eliminating them — some are advocating picking them more prudently and wisely. Read Anarchy for more.

Second, the U.S. was full on more Libertarian than most modern Libertarians would strive for, right up until about the 1890’s or 1930's -- and the U.S. had plenty of roads, schools, and social services before the 16th Amendment allowed there to be an income tax and IRS. We had parks, and fire departments, and police, even transcontinental railroads, bridges, and all those things that the clueless imagine evaporating tomorrow, if Libertarians got their way. So the fiction that without the IRS or progressives we wouldn't have these things, is a delusion. The fiction that Libertarians want to eliminate all these things, is also a fraud. If anyone uses those arguments, you know mature discussion or basic understanding of others views exceeds their intellectual or emotional capacity.

Libertarian is also known as Classical Liberalism, Randian/Randianism (after Ayn Rand), but is just the belief that liberty should be the core principle of their philosophy, seeking to maximize political freedom and autonomy, emphasizing freedom of choice, voluntary association and individual judgment (and responsibility/accountability). In Europe, this would be left wing, in the U.S. it is right wing. (Technically, Libertarian can mean the party, or a form of Classical Liberalism).


Roads and Infrastructure

Many view the United States as a free market capitalist state and Nordic countries such as Sweden and Finland as socialist due to their extensive welfare system. Yet, in the United States, most roads, highways, and other transportation infrastructure are publicly owned and operated. Meanwhile, the vast majority of roads in Sweden and Finland are operated by the private sector and maintained by local communities. The Norwegian model works better and costs half as much. In the U.S. it also helps to remember that the vast majority of roads were created before the federal government got involved in national highways, and they worked just fine... often better, and definitely much cheaper and with more local control and less waste. People that love big government can never reconcile this reality with their imagined world where Government makes things better. more...