Dodging Donkeys and Elephants
Please do not pretend to be shocked by the results of socialized decision-making. Time is the scarcest of goods, and one we stand to waste if we pretend the obvious is somehow arcane. I do not claim to have many answers, but I do claim to know where to dig.
Democracy: The Deity That Prevailed
Progressive illiberalism has introduced peculiar progress throughout the twentieth century. Scientific racism has emerged, hate speech has become a national security threat, and STEM is to be decolonized. That creatures of habit trained to see themselves as valuable, democratic decision-makers believe themselves to a degree autonomous makes sense from a strictly psychological perspective. Our daily, fast-paced routine of dodging donkeys and elephants allows little time for intellectual rigor. Besides, reasoning is of no use in this sport; Ron Paul has tried and as of yet failed. Yet being libertarian, one must ask: why has man reduced himself to a Sumerian slave and accepted government as his absolute master? Was not this country birthed fighting government overreach? Have not the Patriots turned out worse than the British after all? Do not frown; secession was apparently possible under British rule.
Those of us who harbor the desire to secede from the Union and form private-law-covenant microstates based on the only two postulates that matter to proper libertarians-private property rights and the NAP-presumably need not be convinced of the enterprise's futility in twenty-first century, democratic, statist America. Yet I submit that the Lichtensteins, San Marinos, Singapores and Monacos might serve as my first exhibit, in case proof of feasibility were needed. I further assert that mine is an idea much less radical than the formation of a new federal machinery altogether, for example, one that would doubtless indoctrinate your children to accept fiat currency. Such American microstates would, in my wildest political fantasies, have no parliament at all; they would be governed by an immutable, libertarian covenant every citizen would be obliged to sign. Furthermore, leaving this libertarian paradise would be as easy as becoming a citizen-a written statement would suffice, unless one was to, God forbid, be physically removed for breaking the previously signed covenant.
I regard libertarianism as the purest form of social justice; I advocate its principles because I want the best possible life for my loved ones and myself. No, your eyes are not playing tricks on you: I could not care less about you or your perceived victim status. If the chances of us ever meeting are slim, you do not exist in my mind. And if everyone started worrying about their inner circle in this manner, our society would be drastically healthier.
No Way Out
Where, then, do we go from here, while dodging trampling donkeys and elephants? Today's American faces no greater enemy than the state-both states, in fact-for the local administration is hardly less cancerous than the federal authority. Given the opportunity, I would bet my life that 99% of our problems would vanish concurrently with the state. The cage that we so passionately refer to as the greatest country in the world is becoming ever smaller. The Constitution is diluted and represents a laughable shell of its former self; our Founders would start an uprising against us. The average American at once mistakenly believes the president possesses monarchical, 14th-century powers, and fails to detect the bureaucracy that has ballooned to Sovietesque proportions with no decline in sight.
Indeed, the tragedy of modern democracy is not accurately reflected unless we take account of the average citizen's irredeemability: the human I here describe would happily tolerate an economic lockdown if only it were announced by a braying donkey or a trumpeting elephant. He would not be bothered at all if the can-representing his retirement-were kicked down the road by another five or ten years. A smiling donkey could do anything to our hopeless fellow American; needless to say, an elephant playing with water animates him even more at times. This is the much-observed democratic cycle: time keeps ticking, we go out and vote, statism keeps expanding. Peaceful and predictable, it is the mechanism of any dictator's dreams.
If you are somewhat inexperienced in political matters, it is to be expected that you believe there is a way out of this madness. You may be thinking we can change the system by educating the common man; we can disseminate libertarianism through all available channels; ours is a righteous idea, and the masses will catch on eventually. Except, you would have to show me how to beat the public education system first. We were raised by our oppressor since age six and indoctrinated in his ways; we were groomed no differently than a pedophile grooms his adolescent, soon-to-be victims. We would have to find a way to break the mold into which we have been pressed since sentience, and even if we succeeded, those not turned over to the oppressor directly would still be reared by those who were. It is systemic oppression of the highest order, and in fact, the only systemic oppression that exists in the Western world. Funny how our social justice warriors never talk about the elephant in the room that is public education.
Safest Crash Landing
In light of the aforementioned, which should be long past debate, the point is not to figure out how to downsize government, but how to survive the inevitable government expansion. I know of no country that has instituted libertarian principles and downsized its government during the twentieth century; I doubt America is any different. Democracy, aided by socialized education, is an inherently oppressive and interventionist system, built not for elasticity or retroactive policymaking, but rather to tighten its stranglehold on every facet of society. That which has been once installed is never to be uninstalled.
I believe our thinking ought to shift toward survival, as opposed to change. Calculating which part of the cage is the safest for us and our families can be extremely difficult. I am one who despises 100% of all Democrats and 95% of all Republicans. Therefore, the survival tactic I hereby propose is electoral support for the GOP. But wait, you are thinking, aren't you a libertarian?! Isn't the GOP statist too? Hasn't it done a tremendous amount of damage as well? The answer to all these questions would be an emphatic yes. Republicans are utter filth. My idea here is to be as pragmatic as possible in order to limit the accrual of irreparable damage when the fiat system finally does flatline. While donkey policies may bring about the crash sooner, elephant policies should make for a cushier crash landing. There is an appealing logic in the notion that accelerating the demise of a bad system, by voting Democrat, is not only the path of least resistance, but also the shortest distance between two points; however, an opposing logic dictates that the aftermath of such an acceleration is untenable. How do we organize ourselves after the big fiat bang? How many countries rise out of the ashes of this, by then, ungodly Union? Will there not be ever more statists to rise, or might we count on some libertarians to establish a loose confederacy of Misesian, Hayekian and Hoppean microstates? The complexity of these questions is obvious, though one variable will surely play a role: damage control.
Make no mistake: days after the crash, we will hear loud calls for the reestablishment of an identical fiat system accompanied by a federal Union. Man is an animal mostly devoid of the ability to learn from his mistakes. I predict throngs calling for the restart of the same hopelessly flawed political system that brought about the crash. It will be different this time, they will shout. What libertarians must thus ensure is twofold: survival of the crash; and organization of a people ready to form a confederacy. In order to achieve this, I believe it is pragmatic to support Republicans while spreading the gospel of libertarianism. The undoing of the unwieldy American state will be uglier than the French Revolution in some parts of the country. We are aboard the Titanic, ladies and gentlemen: let no one persuade you otherwise.
Neither I nor my libertarian contemporaries will likely live long enough to witness the decimation and reconstitution; presumably, our futures will find us at the tail end of the democratic age. I withhold pronouncement concerning the desirability of evading the revolution: on one level, I wish to partake in the rebuild; on another, I embrace being spared the horror. Of this, however, I am certain: that which contemporary libertarians achieve in our lifetimes will be of immeasurable importance to those libertarians who follow. Let us not sacrifice the unborn on the altar of complacency. Let us maximize our time to spread the Misesian, Rothbardian and Hoppean message in every possible capacity with an eye to a safe crash site. It is not merely what we should do; it is all we can do, for the democratic Leviathan is not to be restrained.