Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Libertarian vs. Popularist

It strikes me that being populist need not be diametrically opposed to my being libertarian, as it might be that the values which libertarians espouse would serve the needs of the many better than the current values of the reigning political parties. I should caution at this point that political philosophy is not my interest and that I would typically be charged with being a social elite, since I am in the academy, am a white guy, and an American, and etc. However, just as there is variance among the animal kingdom in speed, strength, longevity, and etc., so too is there variance among people. Not all can enter the wrestling ring with Bruno Sammartinor (or whoever), but neither can we all do quantum tensor calculus (whatever that is). So, if one thinks the common person is oppressed by the elite in society, or that the instruments of the State need to be grasped from this self-serving elite and used for the benefit and advancement of the people as a whole, the problem is that not everyone is competent to act for their own end. (See the various silly ways people use their money, for instance.) I'm mostly about people fulfilling their potential and not merely having maximum freedom of movement, for people will often do stupid, evil, or self-harming activities with their aquired freedom of movement. Such a position, I recognize, does go against my libertarian leanings. But as I've said, I'm no political philosopher.


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