Reinventing Government Badly
It is patently obvious, even to many libertarians, that some form of government is needed. Libertarians thus reinvent governments according to their own lights as defense associations, private monarchies, and a variety of other bad solutions that privatize power.
- Anything private enterprise can do, government should be able to do too. (1 link)
- Libertarians frequently condemn government for doing things that libertarians would permit to private enterprise. This is a simple hypocrisy or special pleading. Between property and private contract, there is hardly anything government could do that hasn't already been done by private enterprise.
- Defense (1 link)
- Defense against predation both external and internal is a classic public good which libertarians have no real way of providing short of re-inventing government. Even Nozick thought private defense agencies would consolidate into a monopoly which would justifiably tax. Individualist plans for defense are fundamentally fantasy.
- Hans-Hermann Hoppe’s Brave New World [More...]
- But because of their obsessive belief in absolute private property rights, their vision of the ideal society quickly degenerates into one of oppression, where irrational and extreme discrimination can be enforced on the grounds of private property rights, and where libertarian society degenerates into quasi-fascist demands for the physical removal of anyone deemed “undesirable,” including, most notably, cultural libertarians, hedonists, or anyone not committed to extreme social conservatism.
- Minarchy (2 links)
- The foolish idea of a minimal government, which overlooks the better idea of an optimal government. But libertarians have no moral justification for or alternative to taxation in a minimal government. Robert Nozick and Ayn Rand are the best known minarchists, and both fail miserably.
- Polycentric Law (3 links)
- Non-monopolistic, competing law. We actually already have that in the USA, with federal, state, and local law plus local authorities and commonlaw. It may also include private law. Some libertarian academics have made careers describing other, rare or ephemeral historical examples. The big problem is preventing conflict over whose law prevails: this can be solved either with simple dominance or with division of responsibility. This is not a libertarian idea.
Anarcho-capitalist, as far as I’m aware, have yet to answer exactly what a landowner is if not a de facto state. A state is defined over a particular territory, and (theoretically) has control over what happens in that territory. Ownership is also defined as having control over an object; in the case of land, this quite clearly leads to each land owner effectively being a sovereign state, however small. [...] any response that centered on how landowners would be competitively inclined to do Good Things could equally be applied to states, so would be an exercise in special pleading.
UnlearningEcon, "An FAQ for Libertarians"