Libertarian Alliance Conference
The LA held its annual conference last weekend. It wanted to attend, but other things came up, so I couldn't go after all.
I'm not really impressed by the LA.Don't get me wrong, I think they do good work. But surely more could be done to reach out to people and build more of a community of libertarians in this country.There must be quite a few libertarian-leaning people who possess a distrust of big government in the UK. Why isn't anything being done to reach out to such people, so they know they aren't alone in their thoughts and that others share their viewpoints? Such people could be turned away from libertarianism, if they are unable to connect with other holding similar views.It seems to me that only politically aware or computer savvy people hold much knowledge of the LA, at present. Clearly the British libertarian movement needs a more comprehensive policy of outreach.
Supposedly, some religious communities are utilising religious courts to solve disputes.
As a market anarchist, I support this. In a free society, people should be free to create their own protection agencies and law courts. The market should determine which courts succeed and which do not.
As Stefan Molyneux has said (see links), different agencies (or Dispute Resolution Organisation's) can form reciprocity links when dealing with people from other resolution organisations.
Tories still "pro-business"?
The Conservatives are trying to reassure the business community that they're still pro-business, despite wanting to introduce a new "green levy" if they win the next general election.
George Osbourne made a speech to the CBI, stating that little else could be achieved without a free and strong economy.
Of course, the Tories are a party of big government. That can't be denied. But you know what? I'd rather they advocate the abolition of ALL taxation and regulations on business. Regulations on business only seek to hinder business. Businessowners spend more time completing forms, rather than actually making and selling their good or service. Such things can also deter entrepreneurship and new entrants into markets. Why enter business if it's very difficult to do so?
Also, in our very globalised world, countries would compete with each other for investment. A libertarian society, with no regulations on business, would attract business like a magnet. Companies in Western societies aren't outsourcing solely because of lower wage levels in the third world. It's also because Western economies are too over-regulated. Without any regulations, the economy would prosper to a greater degree and there would be higher rates of economic growth.
This issue has been in the news lately. From a libertarian perspective, I don't know what to make of it. Naturally I don't believe in the state. Then again, if Scottish people truly want independence, then it should be granted to them.
I think an interim solution could be a loosely federal UK. Let England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland have autonomy in certain areas, but let the Westminster government have control over foreign affairs, basic economic policy, defence, etc.
Could Scotland survive as a viable soveriegn state? It could, potentially. Some advocates of Scottish independence suggest that it follows Ireland's path and makes itself an attractive place to do business. I can't see that happening, because Scotland is a very socialist and statist country.
Queens' Speech Yesterday's Queen's Speech wasn't surprising, from a libertarian viewpoint. Of course, it was full of bills that would increase the size and scope of government.
One proposed Bill seemed intriguing though. The Corporate Manslaughter Bill would, if passed, make it easier to prosecute companies. I have no problem with this Bill per se, since it may actually safeguard rights to person and property.
The BNPNick Griffin was acquitted of inciting racial hatred a few days ago.I'm no fan of the BNP. Nonetheless, I support their right to be racist and air racist views. The solution to the voicing of unpopular views is:a) Ostracise those who voice unpopular views. b) Counter and logically discredit such opinions.
In the market anarchy society of course, property rights would restrict freedom of expression. But on your own property, you should be free to say what you like.
A discussion on Free Talk Live (see links) has made me think.
It's often stated that soldiers who have died in wars died for "our freedom". How true is this exactly?
The only British war of the past 100 years I agree with was the Falklands War. In this instance, internationally recognised British territory had been invaded by the Argentinians. As a paleo-libertarian, I would view that war as a "good war". But all other conflicts in that period I disagree with, yes even WWI and WWII.
In WWI, how was our freedom under threat? Germany couldn't have invaded us since it's naval strength wasn't as great (the Royal Navy was the world's largest at that point). I'm no historian, but I doubt the Second Reich was much of a threat to us.
In WWII, the same scenario applied to Hitler. This is why the Battle of Britain occured. Hitler respected the British Empire and initially didn't want to go to war with us.
As always, it's the government who is the destroyer of freedom. After WWII, the Labour Attlee government initiated the post-war consensus and implemented Keynesian economics, the NHS and the mass nationalisation of industry. After defeating Hitler in order to safeguard liberty, did the British people gain liberty after 1945?!
The current Blair government has curbed civil liberties in the name of "counter terrorism". Without ANY government, we wouldn't suffer these violations of our self-ownership. Everybody would be free to life their lives as THEY see fit, whilst respecting the person and property of another.
Lib Dems repeal laws?
Ming Campbell has stated that the Lib Dems would repeal some anti-liberal legislation implemented by the New Labour government.
Are the Lib Dems suddenly trumpeting smaller, less intrusive government?! I doubt it, since social liberals are inherently inclined towards larger government. A Lib Dem government would still have an NHS, mass regulations on business, fiat currency, taxation and other evils. Still, it's a positive move nonetheless.
Someone needs to stand up to Blair and his government's anti-liberalism. Surrendering liberty for extra security is NOT the answer.