A Dim View of Libertarianism

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Ernest Partridge's multi-part criticism of some of the major aspects of libertarianism.


A Dim View of Libertarianism, Part I: What Is Libertarianism? [More...]
A review of seven important doctrines in libertarianism.
A Dim View of Libertarianism, Part II: The Myth of Social Atomism [More...]
The liberal replies that this denial of the very existence of “society” and “the public” is reductionism, plain and simple – what the Brits call “nothing-buttery.” It is comparable to saying that Hamlet is “nothing but” words, that Beethoven’s music is “nothing but” notes, that the Mona Lisa is “nothing but” pigments on canvas, and that the human brain is “nothing but” cells and electro-chemical events.
A Dim View of Libertarianism, Part III: Market Fundamentalism [More...]
"The widespread acceptance has been accomplished through simple repetition, devoid of argument and rich in the rhetoric of “freedom.” About the only supporting argument forms of note are anecdotal evidence and false generalization."
A Dim View of Libertarianism, Part IV: The Privatization Panacea [More...]
"They believe this unproved dogma despite an abundance of practical historical evidence to the contrary. And they are endeavoring to impose this dogma in place of regulations and social programs that have been tested, implemented and proven through several twentieth century administrations, both Democratic and Republic."
A Dim View of Libertarianism, Part V: Corporations – Invaluable Servants, Ruthless Masters [More...]
The libertarians’ position on corporations is divided. One faction holds that there should be no legal and regulatory curbs on corporations, since they are the result of free association of individuals... But corporate power depends crucially on government intervention in the marketplace.
A Dim View of Libertarianism, Part VI -- The Inevitability of Government [More...]
"markets, private property and corporations are good things, but it is possible to have too much of a good thing. For these worthy and indispensable servants of the body politic can become cruel and insufferable masters, to prevent which, we establish laws and regulations -- i.e., government."
A Dim View of Libertarianism, Part VII -- Some Concluding Questions [More...]
"The libertarian regards a morally well-ordered society as a free gift, to which nothing is owed for its maintenance."


Though free market theorists are reluctant to admit it, capitalists are not fond of free markets, since open and fair competition forces them to invest in product development while they cut their prices. Monopoly and the destruction of competition is the ideal condition for the entrepreneur, and he will strive to achieve it unless restrained not by conscience but by an outside agency enforcing “anti-trust” laws.
Ernest Partridge, "A Dim View of Libertarianism, Part VII -- Some Concluding Questions"