As the debate rages around us in the political realm, the left-right paradigm is so standard, it’s obvious it is simply assumed for the most part. You are either liberal or conservative, Democrat or Republican. Which is really pretty ridiculous. There are so many different issues, and types of issues, with such widespread support from a variety of people, that such rigid classification doesn’t work.
That doesn’t keep people from trying, however. Which just reveals how inaccurate and inadequate are this mindset and the labels behind it. Tribalism draws together those who share a partisan mentality but often don’t realize how much they may actually differ on some matters. This can lead to ineffective campaigning, inept governing and further damage to civic health.
There are those who have begun to stretch a bit from a traditional conservative stance to something more libertarian, at least for some issues. For them, the term conservatarian may work. But, there really are some fundamental differences between libertarian and conservative. In fact, between libertarians and everyone else. More on that below.That's one of the distinguishing characteristics of libertarians...We know that we're not free. Most everyone else doesn't. That's why so many non-libertarians are so befuddled, confused, and even sometimes angry when they hear us. Click To Tweet
The Lies of Indoctrination
Jacob Hornberger, founder and president of The Future of Freedom Foundation, shares some thoughts on his own journey from assuming we live in a free country to knowing we don’t. This earlier naiveté he calls the “life of the lie” wherein, despite our lack of freedom, we insist we are free and resist any assertions to the contrary. This is a typical experience for many of us and also explains the chasm between libertarians and everyone else.
“By the time I graduated high school, my indoctrination was complete. I had absolutely no doubt that I lived in a free country. I’d venture to say that the same is true for 99 percent of other students who attend America’s public schools. They graduate convinced that they live in a free country and oftentimes live the rest of their lives with that mindset…
“I realized that I had been lied to since the first grade. The United States is not a free country and the American people are not a free people. They just believe they are, owing primarily to the indoctrination they receive in public school or, oftentimes, in government-licensed private schools.
“That’s one of the distinguishing characteristics of libertarians, as compared to most everyone else. We know that we’re not free. Most everyone else doesn’t. That’s why so many non-libertarians are so befuddled, confused, and even sometimes angry when they hear us libertarians expounding our freedom philosophy. Since they ‘know’ that the United States is a free country and that Americans are a free people, they simply don’t get it when they hear us libertarians fighting to achieve a free society in our land.”
How the Life of the Lie is Manifested
He goes on to cite five examples where this common lie is manifested.
- The welfare state
- The drug war
- The national-security state
- A managed economy
- Government schooling
In each, we see how the state exercises its power over us rather than allowing us to live in a truly free country. If you do not hold to libertarian thought, or don’t understand it, we encourage you to read America’s Life of the Lie.