My last few posts have been about calls for government to make us safer on the Antelope Valley Freeway (AVF), as a result of a hypothetical multi-car tragedy. You can read about it here.
The final three calls for safety from that article are as follows.
- We need higher traffic fines.
- Let’s tax fuel to reduce traffic.
- If we build a monorail between Palmdale and Burbank, it will reduce traffic.
While my intent was to break these down individually, I realized that would get laborious so I decided to generalize: all calls for government intervention are to ask for less liberty, and to delegate away property from one person to another. Period.
There are prominent thinkers and many others who think libertarians should stick to domestic civic issues such as traffic laws and drugs. To some, talking about traffic laws on the AVF is exactly the lane (hey, that’s a pun!) libertarians should stay in. To others, explaining how less State action would make for better foreign policy and less war is where I should be expending my time. I really don’t want to get bogged down on this particular local matter, but the AVF illustrates a microcosm of a larger problem. Separating domestic and foreign issues when it comes to liberty is a very tenuous game. In short, the way people think about domestic issues should affect how they think about whether a nation-state has the right to reach out and kill children far-away with drones and missiles. I know too many cannot make the connection, but it is important to bridge that gap, I think.
A libertarian mindset is a holistic one. It is my opinion that to be “kind of” libertarian is like being “kind of” pregnant. When you invite the State to control you, you certainly allow it to control everything. Allowing the State to gain more and more power is based on fear: fear of a car crash, fear of a terrorist attack, fear of poisoned foods, fear of being fat. Eventually, you get sloth on top of the fear. Actually, it might be a learned helplessness. Eventually, not only do more and more people become accustomed to not looking out for themselves, those who may have wished to do so find it impossible because of the regulation, taxation, and legalized theft of property.
But the violence begets more violence. Drone attacks on foreign soil produce enemies of the U.S. (see Blowback). Contrary to the propaganda, they don’t hate us for our freedom (which is absolutely ridiculous), “they” hate “us” because “we” (words used cautiously) collectively approved (supposedly) our government’s interventionist foreign policy. In essence, too many have bought that without the State, we would not be safe, we would not have justice, and people could not coexist.
As government creates more problems, it claims it needs more power to fix them…this is regardless of whether it is traffic laws or drones attacking foreign lands. That’s why hacking away at its power one mind at a time is of the essence.