Wednesday 3 November 2010

Waiting For The Penny To Drop

Hmmm, I recognise this Delingpole philosophy from somewhere.

Liberty is not a pick and mix free-for-all in which you think government should ban the things you don’t like and encourage things you do like: that’s how Libtards think. Libertarianism [...] is about recognising that having to put up with behaviour you don’t necessarily approve of is a far lesser evil than having the government messily and expensively intervene to regulate it.
And so I should, it's been a continuing theme here at Dick's. A motto, even.

You can't pick and choose which liberties you wish to keep, and which are OK to be stamped on. Bending an inch to these people just boosts their power and leads, eventually, to something being attacked which you hold dear.
This doesn't just hold true for libertarians, either. There's many a time you'll have heard 'progressives' referring to a state intervention as being 'not fair', when you know damn well that they will have been in full agreement, at some point, with government policies which are unfair on others.

Niemöller understood the concept, which is not surprising since it has been a golden rule underpinning man's entire civilised existence. Yet here we are, in the 21st century, and some people still don't seem to get it.

Oh well, one day, eh?


Anonymous said...

Nice piece ,Dick,some of us may
differ on the usefullness of
"libertarians"and "liberals".
On the singular issue of the totalitarian,draconian absolutist
smoking ban,our chattering friends
in the pantheon of liberty appear to be as much use as their groaning
mentors in the Guardian.
Their objective debate and reasoning is indeed most noble
but still only words which festoon
our screens today ,gone tomorrow.
Most of them,fluttering ghosts
hovering in hope but reluctant in
deeds.Worthy spirits often read,
rarely seen.

Both ends burning

Junican said...

Yesterday, I was asked by YouGov to complete a survey. "OK", I thought, "Let's see what it is about". So I did it.
The questions were about how I see the balance of power (sort of military) in the world at the moment. Did I think that the USA was still the most powerful nation in the world, or could it be a) China, b) India, c)Russia..etc.
As I completed this 'survey', the thought entered my mind, "Of what significance is it what I think?"
I mean, what does it matter what I personally think about this matter?

Why have YouGov conducted this survey? What is the point?

Surely, it can only be to show that THE MAJORITY of people think...this or that. What does it matter?

Is this not just another example of the idiotic way in which we are being governed?

I have arrived at a conclusion.

There was a time when the Government was legitimately engaged in the SHORT TERM. The short term was the legitimate concern of the government. LONG TERM was unknowable, and subject to so many variables that it was not worth worrying about - from a government point of view. Of course, the atomic energy authority, for example, would be thinking long term, and that is their right and their duty.

When government starts LEGISLATING for the long term, only disaster can ensue. It follows from the variables. LEGISLATION, by its nature, is ENFORCEMENT, even if it is with the best of intentions.

The smoking ban is an obvious case in point.

When one thinks about it carefully, the stupidity is enormous. I will give one simple example.

The law requires, under the payment of various penalties, that all public enclosed places display a 'smoking prohibited' notice. This aspect of the law has quietly been dropped. Neither of my two local pubs now have such a notice. It seems that the local authority has decided not to bother about enforcement. So how come that the local authority can disregard the law, just like that? It is beyond my comprehension.

The reason that I mention the YouGov survey is precisely because the opinion of the majority is not relevant to the minority - or it ought not to be. For example, it ought not to matter to Jehovah's Witnesses that the majority think that they are deranged. Nor is it the business of MPs to ban Jehovah's Witnesses. Nor ought it to be the business of MPs to vote into law rules which force people to behave in a way approved by the majority.

Richard Hansen said...

On Niemoller: well worth posting -
"first they came for the communists
and I did not speak up
because I was not a communist
Then they came for the Jews
and I did not speak up
because I am not a Jew
Then they came for the Catholics
and I did not speak up
because I am a Protestant
Then they came for me
and by that time there was no one speak up for me."

Unless and until sufficient numbers of people recognize and acknowledge that this is indeed the path we are on, true Liberty remains in peril and continues to diminish as we blindly "give it away" through all manner of greed, zealotry, bigotry and self-righteousness fueled by seemingly endless delusional fear. And those currently on the side of power and oppression stand vehement yet clueless, in a sort of drunken stupor, intoxicated on their own sense of "rightness and superiority" but oblivious to the fatal destination to which this "road of fear" inevitably leads.

Anonymous said...

Bought and sold.
It all depends on the beliefs and attitudes of the buyer.

Kris said...

Yet another huge victory for freedom :)

Fredrik Eich said...

Dick, your blog mascot is against allowing prisoners to vote. I was wondering what your take on it was? I feel strongly that they should and also I feel strongly that they should not - can't make my mind up. The US has ~2,000,000 prisoners and that's a lot of potential voters and I find it hard to believe they all belong in prison.