Why I’m Not A Libertarian (Abridged Version)

As, in the process of re-ordering my life (Read: Shirking as much academic responsibility as possible, lest I permit school to continue to obstruct my education.), I make my gradual, but ultimately triumphant, return to maintaining this humble web-log with greater assiduousness, I intend to offer my thoughts on why, though I most definitely sympathize with many currents of libertarian thought, and have supported l/Libertarian candidates, I not only refuse to call myself a libertarian, but ultimately judge that (collection of) ideology(ies) to be dangerous, internally contradictory alchemy destined to thrust society into authoritarianism of the “less intolerable” sort or, by way of “anarchy” — that is, chaotic individualism run amok —, into absolute, abject despotism.

This forthcoming post will require some research and much time on my part, so I make no promises of its appearance here on Nathancontramundi. For now, though, I permit Mr. Wendell Berry of Kentucky to speak at my behest, explaining marvelously why I abjure libertarianism (as well as the noxious conservative liberalism and “libertarian conservatism”) and embrace conservatism — real conservatism, that is, conservatism of the heart and soul, a conservatism of history, community, and place:

[T]he ability of an organism to survive outside of the universe has yet to be demonstrated. Inside it, everything happens in concert; not a breath is drawn but by the grace of an inconceivable series of vital connections joining an inconceivable multiplicity of created things in an inconceivable unity.


These ways of marriage, kinship, friendship, and neighborhood surround us with forbiddings; they are forms of bondage, and involved in our humanity is always the wish to escape. […] But involved in our humanity also is the warning that we can escape only into loneliness and meaningless. Our choice may be between a small, human-sized meaning and a vast meaningless, or between the freedom of our virtues and the freedom of our vices.”

[“Men and Women in Search of Common Ground”, in The Art of the Commonplace. Italicized emphasis original; bold-faced mine. – NPO.]

Perhaps most significant here is Berry’s linking “small, human-sized meaning” to virtue while he pairs “vast meaningless” — that is, our escape from bondage — with vice. Maybe the Devil really is the ultimate libertarian.


2 Responses

  1. Well said. I completely concur with the prophet from Kentucky.

    Pax Christi,

  2. […] of Enlightenment liberalism. However, it disavows the State. To me, this is, as I called it before, internally contradictory alchemy. The liberal needs the […]

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