An Old Blogpost of Mine on Secession

I just found an old blogpost I wrote back in 2010 for a now defunct Libertarian publication called “LibertarianMinds”. Seeing as how I haven’t had much time as of late to write anything new, I thought I might post something old, instead.

It’s funny reading this now, as there are pieces of the essay I no longer agree with, but for the most part it is still an accurate assessment of my views. However, I am no longer as dismissive of precedent and tradition now as I once was.

At any rate, here it is. Re-posted in full without any edits:

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No Daniel in Trump’s Inner-Circle

Since Donald Trump’s ill-considered attack on Bashar Assad’s forces in Syria, many of those who hoped his presidency would be different from previous ones, ardent and luke-warm supporters alike, have come out in opposition to the sudden change of course in Trump’s foreign policy. They cite legitimate concerns over the seeming lack of U.S. national security interests in Syria, the possible assistance this military action has rendered to ISIS and other Islamist forces in Syria, and how this may very well have squandered whatever chance there might have been for rapprochement with Russia. All of these disadvantages and with very little if anything to show for it in return. These are all good points. Indeed, they are not wrong. However, it is unfortunately the case that those elements of the American leadership which have maneuvered Trump into this mess are looking at a very different set of considerations and performing their cost-benefit analyses of potential courses of action against an entirely different system of measurement.

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Is Christianity to Blame?

It has become quite a widely-held position amongst the Alt-Right that fault for the loss of identity and in-group loyalty and even the self-sabotage of Western societies is the result (the inevitable result, as some would even have it) of Christianity. Some of those who hold this viewpoint even go so far as to attempt to resurrect or at least extract certain elements of the pre-Christian religions of Europe. However, I find this view to be mistaken and is based upon an historical horizon that stretches scarcely more than a single century into the past.

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An American’s Thoughts on an Englishman’s View of the U.S. Election

I am not often in disagreement with Dr. Sean Gabb. We can certainly agree that the American empire, which grew up in the decades following the Second World War, has had many detrimental effects on Western Civilization and on the world at large. What benefits it did bring with it came decades ago and dried up with the end of the Cold War. All the same, I do not share Sean’s ambivalence toward the future of American society. To paraphrase his opinion as I understand it: Let befall America whatever may, just so long as it ceases to be a nuisance to Britain.

Now, I doubt the fact of my not sharing his sentiment would surprise anyone, considering that I am, myself, an American. It is therefore only natural that I would have a vested and personal interest in the future of my country. Less obvious, perhaps, is that in my view the people of the United States and of the United Kingdom have a much deeper vested interest in the future of one another’s country than comes through in Sean’s essay. If the character of my country is allowed to be changed in the manner that president Obama, secretary Clinton, and a host of other establishmentarians have in mind, it will be to the great detriment not only of my country, but of those of our cousins on the other side of the Atlantic and Pacific oceans.

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The Bulls*** and the Bear

Watching the third presidential debate last night was painful. I have never been one to yell at the TV, but last night was an exception. I have never seen such bold-faced lies and outright hypocrisy in my life than what I heard from Hillary Clinton. Even after all the Wikileaks revelations and the O’Keefe documentary, the woman had the audacity to proclaim that political graft and corruption must be brought to an end, and she’s the one to do it. Confronted with her own words about wanting open borders for the entire western hemisphere, without pause or expression she attempted to shrug it off by saying that she was referring to open borders for energy… I was unaware that energy has hitherto required visa sponsorship to enter the United States.

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Observations on Last Night’s Presidential Debate

Watching the presidential debate last night, as always, was a difficult thing to stomach. Preparing for and watching these things is like going in for a colonoscopy. You know you should probably do it from time to time for good measure, but at the end of the day, whether a colonoscopy or a presidential debate, it’s a shitty spectacle and an ordeal that will leave those subjected to it walking funny for the next few days.

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Hadrian or Justinian: The Choice Before America

A recent post by Sean Gabb about the crossroads at which the UK now finds herself and his assessment of what will likely happen next got me thinking about the decision now confronting my own country and the likely results of that decision, whichever the choice we ultimately make. Below are my thoughts on this matter.

I don’t much care for Donald Trump. He’s loud. He has a strong tendency toward the bombastic in his speeches, especially the earlier ones, and has said and done many careless or ill-considered things in the past. He relies too much on hyperbole and insult for my taste. That said, my dislike for him is of the same sort as that, which I felt toward my little brother from time to time when we were growing up – he could get on my nerves (more often than not, that was his intention). On the other hand, I have a dislike for Hillary Clinton of the same variety that I generally reserve for murderers and serial rapists. I say generally because, though it may be injudicious of me, in a few instances the actions of some people, though less terrible, are so reprehensible in my eyes that my mind tends to lump them together with these harder criminals in a single – shall we say – basket of deplorables. This particular case, however, is not one of those instances.

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Libertarian Transitions Part I: The Frodo Myth

[Note: This post represents the first in a series that will deal with the problem of how to transition from the current political order to a more libertarian future. The topic of this first post is aimed primarily at younger readers, as they are generally the ones who most commonly adhere to the myth mentioned in the title. However, it never hurts to give a topic a second look, even if one has already arrived at the same conclusions for himself. There is always the possibility of coming across some small bit of nuance that may have been overlooked and from which it is possible to improve or broaden one’s understanding of a topic. The same goes for myself, of course. So, as always, comments are welcome. – Tormod]

Quite frequently in conversation with other libertarians I encounter a certain perception of the State, which I believe is misconceived. This view holds the State to be a more or less unitary entity, unalloyed in its composition and inflexible in its cohesiveness. The implications of this misconception are most apparent in a popular libertarian myth, which offers an attractive, but unlikely solution to the exercise of State power. I refer to it here as the ‘Frodo Myth’ for its similarity to the role of Frodo Baggins in J.R.R. Tolkien’s ‘Lord of the Rings’ trilogy. As libertarians, I believe we would do well to dispense both with the myth and the false premise upon which it rests.

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Thoughts on Libertarian-Distributism

Not long ago, I came across a blog post by Keir Martland that I think deserves careful consideration. The article, “How Do You Solve a Problem Like the Proletariat,” points out that libertarians tend to have a blind spot when it comes to cultural and social concerns. He urges his fellow libertarians not to forget that issues of this kind exist and that they are not inconsequential. In asserting that some means of addressing such questions within libertarian parameters must be found, he calls our attention to the work of the Catholic Distrubutists, who have much to say on these matters. Martland observes that many of their insights are compatible with libertarianism and advocates that these be incorporated into libertarian discourse. If that were to happen, I believe it would be to the substantial benefit of our cause.

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