Libertarian Socialism

Discussion in 'Political Science' started by Fscheu, May 5, 2016.

  1. Ritter

    Ritter Well-Known Member

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    Libertarian Socialism cannot exist simply because the very term itself is contradictory. Broadly simplified, they are infact opposites and saying "Libertarian Socialism" is just like saying "Communistic Capitalism" or "Conservative Progressivism". It is an impossibility.

    Libertarianism is pretty much only a theory about violence and when it is legitimised or not. In accordance with the NAP then, violence is only justified in terms of self-defense and definied as initiating force to get what you want. A Socialist society is upheld by (i)a central power and (ii)taxes, both of which fall under NAP's definition of violence.

    However, in a truly Libertarian society, a parallel, Socialist society could exist too. Here the only difference would be that the participation in it would be entirely voluntary- The people who wish to engage in Socialism are free to do so as long everyone else is left alone. This still wouldn't be "Libertarian Socialism" though, but plain, ordinary, simple and classical Socialism. :)
     
  2. michiganFats

    michiganFats New Member

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    Your response makes no sense, rehashing the question the OP asked doesn't make you look smart.

    Do you usually throw out smart ass comments to people who haven't been active in weeks? That doesn't make you look smart either.

    The rest of your comments in this thread also don't make you look smart. I hope for your sake your mother's basement is climate controlled.
     
  3. AnarchistPhilosopher

    AnarchistPhilosopher New Member

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    The term 'libertarian socialism' may sound strange to American ears who tend to associate the term libertarianism with small state capitalism but that is a newer meaning that originated from the Austrian and Chicago Schools of Economics and it`s important to note libertarian socialists find the mainstream American usage of libertarianism just as strange,noting that capitalists have always built up large states to defend their property as in Prussia,Industrial Revolution-era England.The term 'libertarian' was coined by the French communist revolutionary and feminist Joseph DeJacque as a synonym for anarchism when the word 'anarchist' was illegal due to an anarchist being blamed for the assassination of William McKinley.Now,it`s true that libertarianism had a philosophical meaning as the advocacy of free will in opposition to determinism before then but I am referring to libertarianism in the political sense.As Professor Noam Chomsky explains "In most industrialized nations in the world,the term libertarian always meant anarchist and socialist.Now here,every word takes on its opposite meaning to elsewhere so it`s hard to talk.Here,libertarian means Ayn Rand,Hayek,Von Mises,Rothbard,people like that,here libertarian means a proponent of extreme corporate tyranny worse than State tyrannies because at least there the public has some sort of a role however superficial".
     
  4. Ritter

    Ritter Well-Known Member

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    I think it was Mrs.Rand who noted that one should be ready to stand for and defend their beliefs in absurdum. If you can't push your principle to the limit, it is not a prinicple, but a preference.

    And I feel the true limit of Librtarianism is Anarcho-Capitalism. With this being said, the most principled Libertarianism is as far from Socialism you can get.

    Furthermore, I personally beliieve the only thing one would like to add to Libertarianism is either "Minarchism" ("Libertarian Minarchism") or "Anarchism" ("Libertarian Anarchism"/"AnCap-ism"). But, in geneal creating compound words like these is a little overkill. Stick to callling yourself "Libertarian" and if people ask you to ellaborate you can do so by addding the other etiquettes. Finally, I still would say Sociallism and Libertarianism are not compatible.
     
  5. PreteenCommunist

    PreteenCommunist Active Member

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    Communication certainly was intended - I'm not quite sure how I'm supposed to communicate better if you don't tell me what exactly was unclear. The information I gave was not a random opinion of mine; I was trying to highlight and clarify the difference in meaning between US-American and European libertarianism, which the OP mentioned. And if we don't clarify differences like this, people from different continents will just be talking past each other, so it was quite important for me to address the semantical problem here and provide a bit of context for it.


    I don't see how the paragraph you quoted is relevant. The Conquest of Bread is a book on libertarian socialism, and a good, comprehensive one at that. I was simply recommending a good book.

    Are you actually arguing here that Proudhon, Bakunin and Stirner are irrelevant to anarchism? I mean, it's one thing to state that these self-proclaimed anarchists were statists in practice or that statism is the logical conclusion of libertarian socialist or left-wing market anarchist/mutualist ideas, but quite another to say that their theories were irrelevant to anarchism. At the very least, these theorists represented an incorrect, impractical or incoherent strand of anarchism, and that does not make them irrelevant. By this logic I could say that Cortés was irrelevant to conservatism because this crown-sword-altar variety of conservatism does not champion individual liberty and therefore is an incorrect application of conservatism - but this is of course a non-sequitur.

    Guess what, I basically agree with you and you put it very well. I would just stress a couple of things: firstly, anarchists and statists do not necessarily base their positions on morality, and may well base them on something like class interest, material efficiency or simple expediency and frame their opposition to/support for the state in concrete, non-ethical terms. Secondly, the divide is not as clear-cut as that: Marxists would not ultimately support a state, but we hold that it is necessary during a transition phase (and we also generally do not base this position on morality, save for a few fringe humanist types).

    Or maybe it has something to do with the fact that the poster quite simply did not provide any justification, theoretical or otherwise, for their proposition that anarchism would be (necessarily, it is implied) hyper-survival of the fittest. I literally wanted to know why they made the claim which they made.

    What sort of justification do you need? That was pretty basic libertarian socialist stuff. I was not describing any of my own opinions (heck, I'm not even an anarchist), I was just describing an ideology and the ways in which it differed from my own.

    Sure, it might be an oxymoron. I'm not an anarcho-syndicalist and I don't really mind either way.

    Just so that someone defends their position in this thread, anarcho-syndicalists would have to employ a different conceptualisation of authority from yours in order to avoid being oxymoronic. Using the framework developed by Fromm (in Haben und Sein, I think), the quasi-authority which revolutionaries momentarily possess while they are seizing power is not based on creating an exploitative, dominate-subordinate relationship, but on destroying such a relationship: in this case, the relationships being destroyed are those between a state and the people it governs and those between an employer and their (oppressed, according to libertarian socialists) employee. So we have here an instance of transient, rational authority, in Frommite terms, as opposed to the self-perpetuating, oppressive and irrational relationships in a statist society.

    Refer to my invocation of Fromm's concepts of authority.

    However, I do need to apologise for one thing: I should have used the phrase "make decisions" not "pass laws." Of course, anarchists do not intend to have laws, and that was a misrepresentation. In my defence, I did use a copy and pasted excerpt from a talk from way back (like, waaay back):

    anarchism_excerpt.PNG

    Do not insinuate that I am a liberal unless you want to be virtually hit on the head with a frying pan. Srsly tho.

    In any case; we hate leeches. Which is why we want to overthrow the bourgeoisie, an entire class of parasites.

    What do you think happened in Catalonia and Andalusia in 1936, or Ukraine from 1918-1921? Were the libertarian socialist movements there figments of "progressive learning centres'" imaginations?

    It might be a better idea to enlighten me if I'm having problems with meanings of words than to sling pointless insults.

    When has anyone with the faintest idea of what the hell they're talking about ever described socialism as some kind of primitivist tribal guff? Even Utopian socialism (Owenism and so on) - the closest one could possibly get - wasn't really about tribal existence, and Utopian socialism is utterly irrelevant to both modern political discourse and the discussion we're having.

    As I have been saying, whether self-proclaimed libertarian socialists were genuine libertarians is debatable, and as a non-libertarian I do not particularly care for that sort of word game. All I was doing in the posts to which you responded is answering certain questions about an ideology which called itself libertarian socialism. I did not make this ideology up: it had a long historic background, as evidenced by my examples of Makhnovshchina in Ukraine and the various anarchist communes established by the CNT-FAI and affiliated groups during the Spanish Civil War, and the debates in the First International between Marxists and socialist anarchists which preceded these events. If you want to argue that this ideology was not truly libertarian or anarchist, knock yourself out, but it did indeed exist as an established trend within socialism, and in the posts you quoted I was just providing some information - not an argument - concerning an already-existing ideology to which I do not personally adhere.
     
  6. AnarchistPhilosopher

    AnarchistPhilosopher New Member

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    Rand was a chainsmoking,bitter,Aristotelian pseudo-philosopher and I find it odd that right-libertarians seem to have such a fetish for a woman who regarded them as "sell-outs of capitalist principles" and "hippies of the Right".She said "The mix of capitalism,the only economic system that demands an objective moral framework with anarchism,the negation of all philosophy.That is worse than anything the New Left has proposed.I could debate a Marxist with better understanding and more respect than I could with Rothbard and Hayek`s juvenile ilk".
     
  7. PreteenCommunist

    PreteenCommunist Active Member

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    I guess anything praising self-interest and rationality in the same phrase looks good to the more dogmatic capitalist types.
     
  8. AlNewman

    AlNewman Well-Known Member

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    Say what?
     
  9. AlNewman

    AlNewman Well-Known Member

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    In part? So which part do you keep? Are you insane or just spouting the most popular theme? Where did Jefferson place any restrictions?
     
  10. AlNewman

    AlNewman Well-Known Member

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    Great speech but you somehow missed that Libertarians are still statist.
     
  11. AlNewman

    AlNewman Well-Known Member

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    Wow, I didn't know that could stack horse manure that high!!!!!
     
  12. AlNewman

    AlNewman Well-Known Member

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    And then there is the 2nd Amendment: thou shall keep thy property.
     
  13. Ritter

    Ritter Well-Known Member

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    I'm not that big of a fan of hers tbh.
     
  14. AnarchistPhilosopher

    AnarchistPhilosopher New Member

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    Need I remind you of Jefferson`s notorious moral hypocrisy?Preaching liberty and equality when his pecuniary interests depended upon real inequality,namely slavery.He also preached against racial mixing yet did it with a black slave and paid off the resulting offspring to keep their familial ties a secret so he could maintain his reputation.
     
  15. AnarchistPhilosopher

    AnarchistPhilosopher New Member

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    There`s one thing we can agree on.I also find her belief that the weak are unworthy of love morally repugnant.One of the reasons I am an anarchist is because I believe the strong have a responsibility to protect the weak,not repress,control,deport,gag,tax or shoot them.
     
  16. AnarchistPhilosopher

    AnarchistPhilosopher New Member

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  17. LiveUninhibited

    LiveUninhibited Well-Known Member

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    As compelling as your trolling is, I don't see anything of substance to respond to. So I'll await a higher quality post.
     
  18. AlNewman

    AlNewman Well-Known Member

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    First, libertarian socialism is an oxymoron that by your reckoning purports to do what can never be. Where does it support any sort of individual freedom when the soul course is to control but economic freedom? How can stealing from one to give to the undeserving purport economic freedom?

    Putting consumer spending into the hands of consumers, by that you are referring to having a consumer incapable of earning that which they want so it is given to them at the expense of another. Just how does this purport to do anything other than promote poverty?

    So it's ok for some perceived "authority" to steal as long as what they steal is distributed to all that demand they have some right to the loot?

    Taxation is the claim that a group of people who call themselves "government" have been given the "right" to confiscate an arbitrarily-chosen percentage of the product of another individual's labor (a form of property), whether or not the other agrees to share that product voluntarily. Taxation is enforced by the threat of violence (behavior resulting in bodily harm) or imprisonment (the taking away of physical freedom of movement) from those from whom the product is being seized attempt to resist the confiscation. This practice is always "justified" (made into a right) by those who claim that such a practice is necessary and required to "uphold the common good". If we define slavery as the involuntary confiscation of one hundred percent of the product of the labor of another human being, we can clearly see that there is no magical percentage to which we could lower this number (other than zero percent) that would no longer constitute slavery. If we are being honest with ourselves, taxation is merely a euphemism for theft, violence, and slavery, the practices upon which it is actually based. Since no individual anywhere on earth has the "right" to claim ownership of the product of another's labor such behavior can never be "delegated" to a group and called a "right". Therefore, all forms of taxation are always wrong according to natural law.​
     
  19. Ritter

    Ritter Well-Known Member

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    You do not need Socialism to prtoect the weak. In a Libertarian state, the free market and absence of minimum wage would considerably simplify the weak's search for employment. If it is an individual who really is that unfortunate and weak that he can't work at all, he'd get the help he needs too. How?

    - Libertarianism value charity and if there were no taxes, people would donate money to things they care about/things that really matter. Also, there would be no incentives not to help each other out in tough times. The excuse "meh, the state will solve this." would no longer be valid.
    - Hospitals and homes for the eldery would be better due to more competition.
    - Even the "barbaric and uncivilised" Medivieval Europe had hospitals open for the poor people where they could be taken care of for free. So what says these kind of initiative could not exist today? Afterall, we see have doctors travelling to Africa where they work for free and only care about helping the poor and unfortunate.

    Libertarianism does not require Socialism to help the poor, it does that by itself and when Libertarianism is mixed with Socialism it is no longer Libertarianism. :)
     
  20. AnarchistPhilosopher

    AnarchistPhilosopher New Member

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    The problem with your assertion is that it necessarily requires a benign view of the powerful Libertarian Socialists simply do not share.It has been scientifically proven that the richer someone is and the more social status they have,the more likely that person is to be a psychopath.There are exceptions,of course,but that is the trend.Also,charity is often a way for capitalists to expel guilt from themselves for the monetarily exploitative behaviors they engage in towards the economically disadvantaged and minority groups in Third World nations and not a genuine act of altruism.It also keeps the proletarians dependent upon the kindness of the bourgeoisie which is not what we want,we want the proletariat to be self-sufficient so instead of charity we advocate bottom-up workers` solidarity in the form of democratically-organized,bottom-up federations and communes.Also,it is possible for there to be markets and even property in a libertarian socialist situation.What is impossible is private property because that is an artificial creation of The State that results in social stratification and an unequal distribution of power and profits.However,libertarian socialists have no problem with personal property so your toothbrush and other necessities would still be yours,it`s just that others would have access to that which you are not actively using.
     
  21. Leftists Are Radical

    Leftists Are Radical Newly Registered

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    Libertarian socialism (often interchangeable with anarcho-socialism) is the belief in a socialist society with a limited state/government, AKA a socialist society in which the people get to decide directly what to do, rather than decide what to do through a government/state apparatus.
     
  22. DZero

    DZero Member

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    In capitalism, the wealthy wins. Class conflict is inevitable in capitalism, which makes it hard to sustain in the long term. Capitalism has an inherent effective demand gap, so it has practical issues as well. Charity? The best charity in capitalism would be a job, but since there is a profit motive in capitalism, there is a need to cut wages for greater profit. In capitalism, profit is what you live by. Socialism doesn't "help" the poor, it eliminates class conflict and allows you to own your own labor. Socialism and Libertarianism can mix(not an oxymoron) because socialism doesn't violate liberty. Though, your talking about a specific variety of socialism, called "Public ownership" or "State ownership". State ownership would be inconsistent with libertarianism.
     
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