In reality, Libertarianism NEVER works, because it is an overly simplistic theology, based on the erroneous assumption that we all have completely free choices at all times, free of any constraints. The ideas sometimes sound reasonable, but always fall apart when subjected to even the most cursory of examinations. Two examples today, since we haven’t time to write about them all:
Number A: cell phone usage on airplanes, currently not allowed. The policy is under review and in a public comments period (go here to weigh in with your opinion). A discussion erupted yesterday between those who are for and against, because, hey, Americans argue. The pro-loud-cellphone-user-everywhere Libertarians said, in brief, “tough s***, don’t fly. My right to dominate the space around me by bellowing into my Shoephone outweighs your right to sleep, concentrate, work, etc. ” When reasonable, rational adults attempted to point out that not everyone can just choose not to fly, the Libertarians kept saying “you chose this job, this family, this location to live, so AMFYOYO. Make different choices. Government should not be allowed to control my behavior.”
Letter 2: Libertarians think that men should not have to pay child support , since men have “no right to make reproductive choices”. This bit of twaddle is an offshoot of the “men’s rights” movement, which Libertarians love. They are demanding the ability to choose to default on their obligations because they assume that the women they impregnate have the free choice to raise or not raise the baby, get an abortion or not, etcetera. The idea that these are easy choices available to every woman, everywhere, at all times is obvious nitwittery, of course, but Libertarians hold onto it nonetheless. (They also ignore the fact that men DO have the right to make choices: we can wear condoms, get our tubes tied, or just not f*** with someone who can get pregnant.)
These are but two examples of the obvious bankruptcy of Libertarian theology (you can claim it’s not a religion, but is sure as Hell acts like one). There are many others, like certain Bitcoin adherents, regulatory opposition, preeves who want to be able to marry their daughters and so on. Their argument is always “freedom” and is predicated on the idea that we all have unlimited freedom of choice because we have no limitations placed upon us by external factors. That assumption is, of course, composed of very high-grade fertilizer (anyone here ever take Econ 101? Big takeaway: “resources are scarce”) and like all concentrated fertilizer, it blows up when subjected to pressure.
Real life for real people is fraught with resource scarcity and limited choices. That is why businesses exist, governments exist, houses and clothing exist, medicine exists, and so on. Hell, it’s why cellphones exist, ferchrissakes. We do not live in an ideal world, and our solutions to the imperfections that surround us are likewise imperfect and full of restrictions. That, Gentle Reader, is what we in the Reality-Based Community call “Life”. Real Life.
Libertarians can try all they want to make reality fit into their ideology, but they will fail; just like the Flat-Earthers, Birthers, Truthers, and Science Deniers. Reality will always win in the end, no matter how hard you fight against it.
Mr. Blunt and Cranky