imagining milton friedman, murray rothbard, ludwig von mises, shrek, and f.a. hayek as gundam pilots

(via libertarians-and-stoya)


Something Ozy said about the specific definition of “safe space” has me wondering for an alternative that feels less like appropriation.

I’d just use the term “safe space” anyway. It’s an accurate description.




Are you looking for something like this while also being left?

Or something like this designed to speak to the left, or frame its implications in the terms that leftists tend to actually care about.

Then you may find this interesting.

Austrians? Really? Can’t we do better?

While is an Austrian site and often wrong, this essay isn’t particularly Austrian. While Roderick Long is an Austrian, he’s still usually worth reading.


Are you looking for something like this while also being left?

Or something like this designed to speak to the left, or frame its implications in the terms that leftists tend to actually care about.

Then you may find this interesting.


I am surprised there aren’t more social justice libertarians.

like, people who say ‘any time we give the state power (to go to war, to provide healthcare, to fund research) they use it to entrench the current status quo, even if their deliberate motive is different or exactly the opposite. the people who suffer most from abortion restrictions are poor and non-white. the people who suffer most from the government defining marriage is anyone whose orientation or practice is marginalized. the people who suffer most when we go to war are poor and Other and very far away. the people who get exploited for science, the people who go to jail, the people who end up navigating hellish bureaucracies… So the way to minimize oppression is to shrink and disempower the state.’

now that I write this I am sure these people exist. perhaps they don’t call themselves libertarians because it has a rightist and capitalist connotation? what do they call themselves? anarcho-leftists? but standard libertarians aren’t anarchists and my hypothetical social justice libertarians needn’t be either - libertarianism doesn’t necessarily imply anarchism.

You may be interested in Bleeding Heart Libertarians and Center for a Stateless Society, who take two different libertarian approaches to social justice. BHL is more moderate and approaches issues from grounds that would typically be appealing to progressives, e.g. Rawlsianism (though BHL isn’t entirely Rawlsian), and argues that moving towards libertarianism would be good from a social justice standpoint, or at least that concern with social justice issues is compatible with libertarianism. C4SS is more radical, and many C4SSers describe themselves as market anarchists or free-market anti-capitalists, though they don’t reject the term “libertarian”.

Some good posts from each -

BHL: Victory Through Lexicography, Barack Obama’s Political Philosophy, Ayn Rand Thinks Rich People are Evil

C4SS: Against All Nations and Borders, Those Who Control the Past Control the Future, Toward an Anarchy of Production (not at C4SS, but by a C4SSer)

"I have a choice of two ways of making $1,000; both are political. The first way is to work for the repeal of an enormous number of different special interest laws - CAB and ICC price-fixing, agricultural subsidies, oil quotas, and so on ad nauseam - each of which costs me from a few cents to a few hundred dollars a year. The second way is by working to pass one more special interest law which will benefit a small special interest of which I am a member and which will cost everyone else a few dollars. Suppose that I have no moral preference for one method over the other. Obviously, I will choose the second; it is enormously easier to pass one law than to repeal a hundred. Of course, the first method not only benefits me, it benefits everyone else - but I get nothing from that. The second method benefits me and a few others and harms everyone else - but that costs me nothing. Even if I am just as willing to make money in a way that benefits others as in a way that harms them, the existence of governmental institutions makes it enormously easier for me to do the latter. The result is that in a society such as ours, in which most people would rather produce than steal, we all spend a large part of our time using the laws to steal from each other."

— David Friedman, The Machinery of Freedom


I am literally going through all of the Ayn Rand Harry Potter thing going “yes??? exactly???”

I mean

Said Slytherin, “We’ll teach just those
Whose ancestry’s purest.”

“An obsession with ancestral purity,” whispered Harry out of the side of his mouth, “is the rankest, lowest form of collectivism. It is racism and laziness disguised as filial pride. A man’s character is not inherited. It is forged by steel and jaws and trains and bulging forearm muscles. This is a doctrine for, and by, brutes.”…

“A genius is a genius,” Harry continued, “regardless of the number of morons who belong to the same family—and a moron is a moron, regardless of the number of geniuses who share his last name.” He looked impassively at Draco, who shook under the moral purity of Harry’s gaze.

yes, that’s exactly right?

Snape looked at him with something strange brimming in his eyes. “I believe I’m going to respect you after all, Potter,” he said.

“That doesn’t matter,” Harry said. “Whether you respect me or not, I remain myself.”


“That was unwise, boy,” she hissed, thrusting a quill into his hand. “You will write ‘I will not tell lies’ a hundred times with this until it is etched permanently onto your skin.”

Harry looked coolly at her, like if an iceberg were to make eye contact with you and remain unimpressed. He lifted the quill as if to begin, then immediately chopped off his own hand with it.

Professor Umbridge screamed as the hand continued to draft architectural designs for several minutes on the floor.

Harry wrapped his wrist and placed it efficiently behind his back before making her a low bow. “There is the hand, Professor,” he said, inclining his head wryly to the floor. “You make ask it to do whatever you wish. I remain free.”

ballsy as SHIT I 100% approve civil disobedience FTW

I mean even some of the stuff that is blatant parody also kind of has a point???

“That — that doesn’t matter, Mum,” Ron said tentatively. “You should consider your children indifferently, only on the basis of the values you can trade with them, rather than automatically prefer us simply because we happen to have been born to you. It’s — it’s the trader principle, Mum.”

Mrs. Weasley let the crockpot slip from her hand.

“There’s no reason for my being a prefect to reflect upon you either negatively or poorly,” Ron said, his voice deepening. “My achievements are my own. Not yours.”

I mean, obviously people love their children (and Ayn Rand was perfectly aware of this and in no way against love of children) and also parents are involved in their children’s upbringing and can be proud, but also like… my achievements ARE my own, not my Mom’s! That’s true!

heeeeelp I’m becoming an Objectivist

(via chroniclesofrettek)

When your source of food is either owned jointly by everyone or by no one in particular, difficult decisions must be made on its use. To prevent shortages, not everyone can always have as much as they want, and there must be a mechanism in place to keep enough for everyone. Given that social problems and oppressions can’t just be reduced to either the state or capitalism, such an arrangement is problematic.

In no small way, a communist society ties one’s ability to live - and one’s ability to live the kind of life they want - to their ability to maintain good social standing.

An anarcho-communist might respond by emphasizing the ‘democratic’ nature of the planning they favor, but this mistakes the nature of the problem. While face-to-face deliberation is likely to render more equitable arrangements than some Leninist model of overt command and control, it is also exactly the situation in which the more subtle aspects of privilege and oppression are most at play…

Those who are skeptical of this claim should think back on all the meetings and face-to-face deliberations of which they’ve ever been a part. At an individual level, people with more charismatic personalities are likely to have their views taken much more seriously. This [is] especially true when the person in question is white, male, cis-gender, heterosexual, able-bodied, and has received more formal schooling than others in the group….

By contrast, two of the most important features of markets are radically decentralized decision-making based on distributed knowledge, and the availability of alternatives. In market transactions, one does not have to convince the community at large of the goodness behind one’s use of a given resource in order to use it, they just have to provide value for value.

(Source: eccentric-opinion)

"The impersonality of market society, which has been the object of wide criticism, and at the root of charges of anomie and alienation in modern life, is instead the basis of the fundamental liberation it affords. Men and women are freed from the need to establish more particular bonds, whether these be affective or coercive, in order to interact beneficially… Against the market background of mutual unconcern, particular human relationships of trust and affection may flourish on a voluntary basis. Those who hanker after the close-knit relationships of other and earlier forms of human society are in effect seeking to flee from the freedom to choose the persons in whose interests they will take an interest."

— David Gauthier, Morals by Agreement (via eccentric-opinion)



For all the libertarian rhetoric surrounding Bitcoin, it’s actually pretty useful for oppressed groups.

Remember that the credit card companies shut off donations to Wikileaks.

Remember that Paypal doesn’t allow adult services.

Remember that the government has the power to freeze your bank account and seize your assets if they decide they don’t like you.

This is why we need Bitcoin.

This post is released as CC BY SA.

… is confused. Helping wikileaks, adult services, and protection from government crackdown are exactly the libertarian reasons I’ve heard in support of bitcoin.

Exactly. Bitcoin enables market transactions that are socially disapproved of or outright banned. This is a straightforward reason for libertarians to support it. In market transactions, you don’t have to get social approval for what you’re doing, you only have to provide value for value.

"Let me tell you a story about Milton’s actual, revealed-preference attitude towards authoritarian governments. Sometime shortly before 1977, when Milton left Chicago for the Hoover Institution, a proposal was made to the Department of Economics to form with Iran one of those educational connections, such as we already had with (free) Brazil and (free) Chile: admit a few excellent students (in the Latin American cases from non-state universities, by the way: more detachment from government) and train a set of professors to raise Iranian education in economics to international standards. Understand, this was the Iran of the Shah (whose rule ended in 1979), and a great deal of money was to come with the deal… The negotiations were far advanced. The central administration had signed off on the proposal. Everyone thought it was a grand idea… Then Milton spoke, from one of those classroom seats with writing arms, over on the right in the front row, to this effect: “Wait a minute. We can’t do this. Iran under the Shah is a dictatorship. It is not a democracy. This Department and University shouldn’t get mixed up with thugs like these.” End of discussion. The proposal died, because we all suddenly realized that Milton was right."

Deirdre McCloskey

eamo2747 said: I'm confused about what Beethoven was doing in the black composers post. He was German.


By golly gee! I keep forgetting that Black people didn’t exist until the Fresh Prince of Bel Air came on television! Or that Black people existed in anywhere else than Africa even with slavery going on :) My apologies.

Anyway, here’s proof that Beethoven was Black:

"… Said directly, Beethoven was a black man. Specifically, his mother was a Moor, that group of Muslim Northern Africans who conquered parts of Europe—making Spain their capital—for some 800 years.

In order to make such a substantial statement, presentation of verifiable evidence is compulsory. Let’s start with what some of Beethoven’s contemporaries and biographers say about his brown complexion:


(Louis Letronne, Beethoven, 1814, pencil drawing.)

"Frederick Hertz, German anthropologist, used these terms to describe him: ‘Negroid traits, dark skin, flat, thick nose.’

Emil Ludwig, in his book ‘Beethoven,’ says: ‘His face reveals no trace of the German. He was so dark that people dubbed him Spagnol [dark-skinned].’

Fanny Giannatasio del Rio, in her book ‘An Unrequited Love: An Episode in the Life of Beethoven,’ wrote ‘His somewhat flat broad nose and rather wide mouth, his small piercing eyes and swarthy [dark] complexion, pockmarked into the bargain, gave him a strong resemblance to a mulatto.’

Beethoven’s death mask: profile and full face

C. Czerny stated, ‘His beard—he had not shaved for several days—made the lower part of his already brown face still darker.’

Following are one word descriptions of Beethoven from various writers: Grillparzer, ‘dark’; Bettina von Armin, ‘brown’; Schindler, ‘red and brown’; Rellstab, ‘brownish’; Gelinek, ‘short, dark.’

In Alexander Thayer’s Life of Beethoven, vol.1, p. 134,  the author states, “there is none of that obscurity which exalts one to write history as he would have it and not as it really was. The facts are too patent.” On this same page, he states that the German composer Franz Josef Haydn was referred to as a “Moor” by Prince Esterhazy, and Beethoven had “even more of the Moor in his looks.’ On p. 72, a Beethoven contemporary, Gottfried Fischer, describes him as round-nosed and of dark complexion. Also, he was called ‘der Spagnol’ (the Spaniard).

Other “patent” sources, of which there are many, include, but are not limited to, Beethoven by Maynard Solomon, p.78. He is described as having “thick, bristly coal-black hair” (in today’s parlance, we proudly call it ‘kinky’) and a ‘ruddy-complexioned face.’ In   Beethoven:  His Life and Times by Artes Orga, p.72, Beethoven’s pupil, Carl Czerny of the ‘School of Velocity’ fame, recalls that Beethoven’s ‘coal-black hair, cut a la Titus, stood up around his head [sounds almost like an Afro].  His black beard…darkened the lower part of his dark-complexioned face.’


Engraving by Blasius Hofel, Beethoven, 1814, color facsimile of engraving after a pencil drawing by Louis Letronne. This engraving was regarded in Beethoven’s circle as particularly lifelike. Beethoven himself thought highly of it, and gave several copies to his friends.

Beethoven, the Black Spaniard

(read more here)

Beethoven wasn’t black. This and this portrait make it quite obvious that he was white. The term “Moor”, when used to refer to ethnic groups, traditionally refers to Arabs and Berbers, who aren’t black either.

Tags: Berbers


Okay, despite all this, I’m thinking of different strategies for showing people the good things of the rationality movement.

HPMOR is an obvious one, but not for everyone.

Luminosity (and Alicorn’s posts on Less Wrong) are also good.

The Sequences probably aren’t the best thing.

Anything else?

Data point: I got into Less Wrong through the Sequences.

deathwombcatechesis said: What was Milton Friedman's favourite anime?


Counterrevolutionary Girl Thatcher

Free! - Mont Pelerin Swim Club