The many divisions within libertarianism.
Libertarians are united only by a rhetoric of liberty. Socially, philosophically, and economically they have innumerable, unreconcilable divisions. This is meant to be a rough list of the most apparent divisions. metaphysical (the original use) versus political
vulgar versus supposedly philosophical
rationalist vs. antirationalist
essentialist vs. pragmatist libertarians http://www.davidbrin.com/libertarianarticle2.html "Justice For The Here And Now", Sterba distinguishes Spencerian and Lockean libertarians, based on primacy of liberty or rights. Shows how either results in requirement for basic positive rights. Rebuts Machan, Rasmussen, Hospers, Mack, and Narvesson. Basis of desires versus liberty. "Both Hayek and Rothbard maintain that, in societies like theirs, the desirable always concords with liberty (or maximal liberty). Rothbard achieved this concordance by molding his sensibilities about the desirable to fit his definition of liberty. Hayek achieved this concordance by molding his definition of liberty to fit his sensibilities about the desirable. http://www.vaz1.net/bill/anarchism/library/MereLibertarianism.html D Friedman hardcore vs soft core ideologues versus preferences (gut) http://daviddfriedman.blogspot.com/2008/08/two-paths-for-libertarian-par
ty.html value vs right (Narvesson)
http://www.againstpolitics.com/libertarianism/ (1) that liberty is the sole value to be promoted by governments and individuals (sometimes called the "teleological" version of libertarianism) and (2) that liberty is our sole right (sometimes called "deontological" libertarianism; this is the view that the word "libertarianism", unqualified, is generally taken to stand for nowadays.)
For Spencerian libertarians, right to liberty is basic as they derive other rights from it. On the other hand, according to Lockean libertarians, right to life and right to property are basic and liberty is defined by them as absence of restrictions. (Sterba) pro-life/pro-choice religious/atheist objectivist/the rest minarchist/anarchist (anarcho-capitalist)
Left libertarians versus right libertarians.
This is one of the most fundamental divisions. Left libertarians emphasize social justice in addition to liberty. They include anarchists, socialists, geolibertarians, anti-capitalist free marketers, and green libertarians. The most prominent left libertarians include Noam Chomsky and Henry George. Right libertarians, also known as propertarians because of their emphasis on property, are the ones we continually encounter.
Bleeding Heart Libertarians (liberaltarians) versus traditional right libertarians.
The BHL's think libertarianism should consider social justice; most other libertarians don't. They think justice comes from property rights.
Civil libertarian versus political libertarian
Kochs versus Rothbardians
Austrian vs. Chicago economics
Theee are many subdivisions within AE.
neoconfederate versus cosmotarians
aka Calhounians and Heinleinians
neolibertarians versus paleolibertarians
The neolibertarians are interventionist and the paleolibetarians are isolationist. accepting social contract or not? LP vs non-LP
LP vs LP reform
deontological vs. consequentialist
consequentialist libertarians with the procedural justice libertarians Economic/social scientist = consequentialist, empirical, teleological, a posteriori Philosophical = non-consequentialist, deontological, a priori Each makes the other superfluous. (Jeffrey Friedman) (Is this right about consequentialism? What about Rand?) http://delong.typepad.com/sdj/2011/05/ron-paul-and-feudal-society.html "the right" versus "the good"? rights theory, consequentialist, human flourishing http://volokh.com/archives/archive_2004_07_28.shtml#1091184329 Primary division of libertarians: consequentialists (Hume, Hayek, Epstein, Rand) natural rights (Nozick, etc.) see http://www.reason.com/9903/bk.ls.fuzzy.html
Thick versus thin (Holbo)
we should maximize freedom vs we should treat liberty as property, and everyone as their own property http://crookedtimber.org/2010/04/15/libertarianism-property-rights-and-self-ownership/ "Classical Liberalism" Jason Brennan and John Tomasi (downloaded) Oxford Handbook of Political Philosophy (Oxford University Press, 2011) Thick versus thin (Tremblay) American "Libertarians" and "anarcho-capitalists" tend to be "thin libertarians," meaning that they see libertarianism as a bare-bones ideology which implies no specific ethical commitments beyond the simplest application of the principle of non-aggression. Left-wing libertarians, on the other hand, tend to be "thick libertarians," seeing libertarianism as a whole bundle of entertwined ethical commitments (such as anti-capitalism, anti-racism, anti-fascism, feminism, and so on), within which non-aggression is only one strand.
So you can see, libertarianism can attract two types of people:
1- Those that are libertarian because they agree with the libertarian means of minimal government. 2- Those that are libertarian because they believe that libertarian means will produce the end result that they desire. http://www.dailykos.com/story/2007/2/27/15718/5328
Although there are many political factions with diverse agendas, there are a small number that elevate freedom and liberty as their primary organizing principle: individualist libertarian (Appalachia), corporate libertarian (Far West), and civil libertarian (Yankeedom, New Netherland, and Left Coast). All share a fear of concentrated coercive power that threatens freedom or liberty. Corporate libertarians favor moneyed and corporate liberties and oppose government regulation and taxation. The agenda includes the private sector takeover of many government functions. The best known libertarian think tanks, like CATO, are well funded by corporate interests. Individualist libertarians favor individual freedom and oppose most forms of coercive power whether governmental, corporate, or aristocratic. They are less inclined to organize for collective action than their corporate colleagues. Civil libertarians favor individual freedom and oppose all forms of unchecked coercive power, and they rely heavily on government solutions, specifically the Constitution's Bill of Rights and the federal courts. The ACLU is one well known instrument of civil libertarians. D. Robert Worley Freedom or Liberty? A Democracy or a Republic?
Worley's observation of the differences between the corporate libertarianism of the Deep South and Far West and the individualistic libertarianism of Greater Appalachia are fair enough, but from my perspective the most refreshing and provocative idea is that there is a "civil libertarianism" anchored in Yankeedom and the Left Coast that whose adherents "favor individual freedom and oppose all forms of unchecked coercive power, and...rely heavily on government solutions, specifically the Constitution's Bill of Rights and the federal courts." Colin Woodard Are there three strains of American libertarianism?
Controversies among libertarians Libertarian perspectives on political alliances: Most libertarians ally politically with modern liberals over noneconomic issues. Others ally with isolationist, religious paleoconservatives, despite sharp disagreement on economic and social issues. Libertarian perspectives on intellectual property: Some libertarians believe that property rights in ideas (and other intangibles) should be identical to property rights in physical goods, as they see both justified by natural rights. Others justify intellectual property for utilitarian reasons. They argue that intellectual property rights are required to maximize innovation. Still others believe that "intellectual property" is a euphemism for intellectual protectionism and should be abolished altogether. Libertarian perspectives on immigration: Libertarians of the Natural Law variety generally support freedom of movement, but more nationalistic libertarians argue that open borders amount to legalized trespassing. The debate usually centers on self-ownership of our bodies and whether we have the freedom to hire anyone without the federal government's permission. Consequentialist libertarians may decide the issue in terms of what is best for the economy. Libertarian perspectives on abortion: Abortion, is a controversial issue among Libertarians. Some are pro-life (see Libertarians For Life) while others are pro-choice (see Pro-Choice Libertarians). Libertarian perspectives on the death penalty: Some libertarians support the death penalty on self-defense or retributive justice grounds. Others see it as an excessive abuse of state power. Libertarian perspectives on foreign intervention: Most libertarians are suspicious of government intervention in the affairs of other countries, especially violent intervention. Others (such as those influenced by Objectivism) argue that intervention is not unethical when a foreign government is abusing the rights of its citizens but whether a nation should intervene depends on its own self-interest. Libertarian perspectives on gay rights: Most libertarians feel that adults have a right to choose their own lifestyle or sexual preference, provided that such expression does not trample on the same freedom of other people to choose their own sexual preference or religious freedom. Yet, there has been some debate among libertarians as to how to respond to the issue of gay marriage and homosexuality in armed forces. Libertarian perspectives on inheritance: Libertarians may disagree over what to do in absence of a will or contract in the event of death, and over posthumous property rights. Libertarian perspectives on natural resources: Some libertarians (such as free market environmentalists) want to avoid mismanagement of public resources through private ownership of all natural resources, while others (such as geolibertarians) believe that such resources (especially land) cannot be considered property. Libertarian perspectives on animal rights: Some libertarians grant basic rights to animals (they count as individuals and therefore have the right not to be subjected to coercion), while others see animals as property, and think their owners are free to treat them as they wish. http://libertarianwiki.paulstudier.com/Libertarianism<pre>