Truth might be a bitter pill to swallow, but we are all better off with it. There are truths which many of us do not feel compelled to go overboard in stating, while some others state it cheerfully, as these are brutal facts their taste wouldn’t conceal. The economist David Friedman called the former ‘wimps’ and the latter ‘boors’. While wimps keep away from stating truths like that of the high rate of teenage pregnancy and criminal tendencies among blacks, boors state it with much enthusiasm and delight.
Like Friedman, I too have mixed feelings. It must be obvious that if rightly analyzed and interpreted, knowing all the Non-Politically Correct (Non-PC) facts will have a positive impact on the way many people look at economic policy in particular and the world in general. But, an incurable obsession with such issues is more often than not a sign of bigotry.
An excessive focus on gender, race, sexual orientation and nationality, whether legitimate or not, while turning a blind eye to war and immigration restrictions is like complaining of one’s mother-in-law’s nagging when someone is raping your wife and mugging your children. Needless to mention, it only means that your hatred for your mother in law trumps your hatred for explicit violence by a wide margin.
The white supremacist
Unlike many who love to read, I rarely read blogs. But, I enjoy Bob Wallace’s blog. He is full of opinions, the craziness of which would put even Ayn Rand to shame. All of them are pronounced as if they are self-evident absolutes, which are obvious to him, and should have been equally obvious to others if only they weren’t so stupid, stupid to the point that they needed him to point it out to them. The biggest plus of his writings is his Politically Incorrect stance on everything under the sun.
It is quite well known that Bob Wallace was fired from the libertarian portal Lewrockwell.com for stating some “unpleasant truths”-like the one given below:
“Most ‘bigotry’ is the act of noticing the truth. Blacks are genetically intellectually inferior, always have been, always will be. Except for music and sports, they will always be on the bottom. They’ve never had a culture worthy of the name, never will. Asians have an ages-old group mentality that I doubt can be eradicated. They have no creativity, and I doubt anything can be done about that, either. There never was a Muslim Golden Age. Most of it consisted of stealing from Christians and Jews. Islam was, and always will be, an intellectually and morally dead obscenity. It is the worst thing that has happened to the world. Jews will always be ostracized because of their attempts to destroy every culture that admits them. Whites will always be on top, Asians right underneath them, Mexicans far below, and blacks’ right at the bottom. Nearly everything in the world has been created by Western Christian civilization, especially in America since 1776.”
No sight as pleasant as that of an eccentric blogger!
“That Randroid keeps telling everyone how great he is by being “true to himself.” Bah.”-Urban Dictionary
The most obnoxious libertarian nut job is the Randroid. What makes him even more obnoxious is his knee-jerk denial when faced with the epithet “libertarian”. “An objectivist is not a libertarian. Duh!”, he would hysterically rant before stomping off. It is highly doubtful whether a Randroid even has a mind. Like many who are drunk on religion, the Randroid is drunk on Rand’s melodrama and pseudo philosophy.
If you are very much into the libertarian movement, it is impossible to not be harangued by the pseudo-rational bullying of Randroids every now and then. They are quite an amusing bunch to watch. When cornered in a Facebook debate, a septuagenarian Objectivist was not willing to admit that Ayn Rand could err. A young boy wondered: “How could she be wrong?” An “activist” argued: “It is not at all rational to argue that immigration restrictions unfairly hurt the poor at the expense of the well-off. Altruistic pity is not a virtue, but an unpardonable sin.” One young girl claimed that being a born rationalist, she could see through religion at the age of one, and never budged since then. A blogger told a libertarian friend that rationality flows through his veins, and that he uses phrases like “Man qua man” because he believes in “precision of language”. Many of them claim to be lifelong capitalists, and to have held the philosophy as far as they remember, though I find it highly improbable that such a clustering of incompatible positions would have ever happened if a creature named Ayn Rand was never born in Saint Petersburg in 1905. Their whole problem lies where that most of them do not know how the theorem-proof system works or even the difference between an assertion and a proof. The difference between the insufferable Randroid and misguided Objectivist is only a matter of degree than principle, all claims and pretensions to the contrary notwithstanding. When a Randroid thinks she was always right, an Objectivist thinks she was the second greatest philosopher of all times and hence by and large right. Still the hard truth remains that she hadn’t read more than a couple of books on philosophy in her whole life.
Recently I got a taste of their bitter medicine when two obnoxious ladies started a campaign against me for betraying the noble ideal of Objectivism by insulting their Goddess at every chance while working for an Ayn Rand Institute funded think tank at the same time. As it often happens with them, these psychotic women barely knew their object of hatred. They wanted to report my wickedness to the Ayn Rand Institute.
One girl was fuming with anger: “When I talked to him, as it was not in the virtual world, I couldn’t document anything. In my anger, I forgot everything.” But, I do remember everything she talked about the whole evening. She talked of her dog which was cute, and her defunct father who, not surprisingly, happened to be a wonderful person like her. He was as persecuted by this irrational society. And of course, on how she intends to be the Objectivist Prime Minister of the world’s largest democracy marketing the virtue of selfishness. Later I heard that reality-the most punitive teacher-finally brought her down. She no longer nurtures such grandiose ambitions, but then it is only because this country doesn’t deserve anyone as pure, noble and brilliant. She was pure to the point of not being willing to discuss philosophy with anyone depraved enough to not toe the party line. She once said in an online forum: “You are implying that Ayn Rand could lie. It is not acceptable at all here. Go away!” And: “I can prove each and every statement of Ayn Rand, including that it is immoral for a woman to aspire to be the United States President.”
Despite his endorsement of a never ending list of monstrous positions, a misogynist libertarian friend of mine is the epitome of interpersonal nicety. He spends much of his waking hours on internet forums fighting the state oppression of long-suffering Alpha-males. Anyone who displays so much as a tendency to identify with the ‘plight’ of women is branded as a wimp who is frantically looking for easy ways to get laid. I do not disagree with him if his point was just that the effect of the feminist movement is decidedly negative. But, my dictionary says that feminism means nothing more than the economic, political and social equality of women.
I was not taken in by his argument that the misuse of laws against domestic violence poses a severe threat to me. “Why am I supposed to lose my sleep over something which has the likelihood of affecting me as much as that of a helicopter falling over my apartment and taking my life off? Aren’t there more important things to worry about?” I wondered.
He chided me for not being enough of a libertarian and argued that the existence of the law itself is proof enough that rights of men like us are sacrificed at the altar of ‘victimology’. Given the existence of the law, we are always at the mercy of “feminazis”, he reminded me. I didn’t disagree. But how the existence of a domestic violence act by itself would mean that the laws are predominantly anti-male was totally beyond me! I needed broader evidence which never quite seemed to emerge from his side. “If we look at the larger picture isn’t it true that women typically get a pretty raw deal?”, I asked, as if I am not sure. He protested that it is not at all true, arguing that men have always protected women from nature and taken care of them, only to get scorn and ingratitude in return. Soon I was harangued by a series of questions which were craftily designed to ferret out hidden leftist tendencies inside me. He was thoroughly convinced that I was born a leftist and in spite of my education, I will inevitably come around to my natural inclinations.
One among many of his bizarre claims is that women in the Middle East have a better deal than the pampered women in the western world. Moreover, men in the Middle East gain far most respect from their spouses than the spineless wimps in the West who yield to even their most irrational demands. With legitimized wife beating and a lot many other oppressive legislations, I didn’t find much plausibility in this notion. He went to the extent of claiming that consensual wife beating will be acceptable and far more prevalent in a libertarian society. Hearing this, another libertarian friend of mine was puzzled and asked him: “Why do you even want the freedom to beat your wife?” “It should be used sparingly and after a point, it becomes hardly necessary. The government has no right to interfere with our sacrosanct family structure.” was his reply. This was too much, way too much, far too much for even men who roughly sympathized with his cause.
One evening he called me up eagerly to share the latest petty injustice against men: Voluntary paternity acknowledgment, with which comes the responsibility to financially support a child and at the same time being denied the right to have genetic testing later to show whether or not one is the child’s biological father. I could easily see his point, as despite its pretensions to being voluntary, it is a deal in which the government draws up the default contract. Again, it is irrelevant to most of us who have rather stable lives. And why does he always have just one subject? It is definitely not worthy of a significant part of our time. I dismissed it saying it is not such a big deal. He was shocked: “What? How can it not be an important issue? There can be no bigger problem on earth than not knowing one’s own father!” I chuckled, but let it pass.
Another cause dear to his heart is the right to accept dowry. I of course, agree that the government has no right whatsoever to prevent voluntary deals between individuals. I also see a lot of hypocrisy in the case against dowry when most women search for deep pockets before tying the nuptial knot, and in many cases, permanently live off them without scruples. Some libertarian thinkers have made a case to the effect that marriage and dating are cases of glorified prostitution. I completely agree. All said, I think it is still despicable. It is not such an inspiring cause to fight for. I asked him: “Why do you spend so much time and effort on this when most people go on with their lives not caring much for the law? In any case, no one is going to stop you!” “How can I even advertise my dowry rate when the law is against it? I am at a severe disadvantage in the marriage market.” was his instant retort. Sadly, I missed it.
One common trait I find among misogynists is that almost always they need stay at home wives. “I hate arrogant career oriented woman. There are many things more important on earth than having a “rewarding” career.” one of them told me. “Like say, changing diapers?”
“How can you live all your life with someone when you cannot even have a meaningful conversation? Won’t you go insane?” I asked this misogynist friend. He had a not-so-surprising answer: “Stupidity in girls is such a big turn-on. I am more comfortable with a pretty girl who makes crisp Dosa’s and loves cute little kittens than someone who talks of the monetary policy of the Federal Reserve. Intelligence and erudition are so un-feminine. It is about time we respect our natural inclinations.” I pray to God that he gets such a wonderful, domesticated wife. Another one answered: “I like naïve girls, for the same reason I like toddlers. They are as cute and gullible.” He liked a girl like Chulbuli!
The Compassionate Conservative
Some conservative libertarians are as interesting as misogynists. No social problem melts their heart, but their heart bleeds for unborn babies. They are almost always the most passionate advocates of spanking. They “feel” that all a naughty toddler needs is a much deserved smack on the bottom. They scream that the government should take its ugly hands out of the interactions between parents and children however abusive it is, because it so weakens the family structure. But, nothing is more unthinkable to them than the ejection of an “unborn baby”. Their attitude was accurately expressed by these words in a Barry Deutsch cartoon: “Take the government out of everything except women’s uteruses, because that is where the government rightly belongs.”
Pro-lifers often feel that it is only they who are an exception in a world which is terribly selfish. Their theory is that none of the supporters of abortion were aborted, and hence look at the world through the narrow prism of selfish beings privileged to walk on the earth. “You support abortion as you were never aborted or have gone through such suffering!” I find the theory ridiculous on the face of it, as the same could be said of the anti-abortion bunch too.
The Hapless Victim
In the eyes of the “politically incorrect” libertarian, the most oppressed, suppressed and marginalized section of the society is the white, middle-aged heterosexual male. Their saner peers sneer that it is not a coincidence that the typical attendee of a libertarian conference is “a middle-aged, white, straight male.”
Libertarian self-centeredness can at best be illustrated by the widespread notion that the United States was much freer in the 19th Century (when black slavery existed and gays were routinely persecuted), and in course of time, the freedom eroded bit by bit. David Boaz of the Cato Institute points out that “it is a historical argument that doesn’t ring true to an awful lot of Jewish, black, female, and gay Americans” who formed the majority of the population in the United States. (Bryan Caplan agrees with Boaz, but argues that unlike blacks and gays, Women and Jews were freer in the gilded age) Few libertarians if any go to the extent of supporting slavery, but it is quite true that many downplay its significance through intention or ignorance.
Boaz clearly makes the distinction between the size of the government and its power, much similar to the differentiation between scale and scope of the state, made by Robert Higgs in “Crisis and Leviathan”. Though the scale of government was small in terms of the size of total expenditures and regulations in the 19th century, it must be true that the power of the government was huge. Black slavery is a case in which the Government exerted immense power over its citizens, when its size was minimal. While libertarians and conservatives look at the size of the government as a severe threat to liberty, its power is looked at benignly.
Whatever the merit of their claims, I never understood how heterosexuals are oppressed and sacrificed. Whenever I hear of persecution and marginalization, I often wonder why I always hear so much from the persecuted side-whether it is from women, bleeding-heart journalists, heterosexuals or whites. Many bleeding heart journalists claim that they are being marginalized by evil capitalists. I cannot help wondering why there is no extreme capitalist in the Indian media when many left liberals are in really powerful positions. But then, it could be my prejudice.
The Hindu Fundamentalist
Many Indian libertarians continuously post status updates claiming “Arabs are dangerous.”, and “Pakistani schools teach Hindu hatred.” They quote, analyze and reject scriptures written by barefoot bums and semi-literate Muslim fundamentalists. They occasionally wonder: “Can’t I even say that Muslims are terrorists? Am I not allowed to speak the unspeakable truth?” and finally express their shock in being persecuted: “But, tell me how am I a Hindu fundamentalist? I am not sure I even understood what you mean!”
Manu Joseph puts Anti-Islamic mentality in perspective: “God is the problem. Not just the Islamic God, but gods of all types. If you really think there is a connection between Islam and the nefarious mind, go to Shirdi. If you stand long enough in Shirdi, you will meet all the top criminals of India. Many of them will be in whites.”
Gary North is said to be a very humble man, but there are few scholars who are as entertaining. In “Honest Money”, he expatiates on the problems when women were used as money. The single biggest problem was that of divisibility. Half a woman, he tells us, is worse than none. The rationalist in me is compelled to admit that I was filled with enlightenment after reading his exposition of Christian monetary economics. He warns us: “God is serious about his orders-eternally serious. God will not be mocked!” He once wondered: “If God’s law is true, how could Gresham’s law be true? How could bad money drive out good money?” He had an answer. “Economists are brilliant. They figured out the answer for this centuries old puzzle which turns our God against market competition. It happens only when the Government enforces equality of money.” So, a God in fact exists. It is only that the Government distorts his signals.
Gary North’s “The Coase Theorem”, is a passionate attack on the “dirty secret” of Economic Analysis of Law and Value-Free Economics. It prods me to take God’s word and actions more seriously, which is revealed through Bible, of course. It would mean that I have to undertake the mind-boggling task of mastering Christian Ethics, Epistemology and Economics in and out! However, it is hard to be amused when he “calls for the death penalty for apostasy, heresy, blasphemy, witchcraft, astrology, adultery, “sodomy or homosexuality,” incest, striking a parent, incorrigible juvenile delinquency, and, in the case of women, “unchastity before marriage.”
Hoppe can be as amusing: “There can be no tolerance toward those habitually promoting lifestyles incompatible with [a libertarian order]. They — the advocates of alternative, non-family and kin-centered lifestyles such as, for instance, individual hedonism, parasitism, nature-environment worship, homosexuality, or communism — will have to be physically removed from society, too, if one is to maintain a libertarian order.”