Women's issues (and feminism) are largely ignored by libertarianism, which is overwhelmingly male. In part, these issues are inherited from early liberalism which assumed male heads of household represented the whole family both politically and economically. No libertarians have really grown past this to address women's issues as strongly as they address the issues of big business. Worse, libertarianism shelters a great deal of misogyny in many of its most popular voices.
- Men's Rights Movement (2 links)
- Men who blame their own failures on feminism, entirely missing the point that feminism is about equal rights, equal treatment and equal opportunities for all people.
- Sex (6 links)
- Libertarian ideology proposes completely legal and unregulated sex, including prostitution, polyamory (bigamy and polygamy), child sex, child marriage, etc. Regulation for protection from disease, protection of family, exploitation of women, etc. is ruled out. But decriminalizing sex work is hardly a position unique to libertarianism, nor will it necessarily solve more problems than it causes.
- The Tensions Between Feminism and Libertarianism: A Focus on Prostitution [More...]
- "The feminist focus on patriarchy as an existing institutional force and the libertarian belief that patriarchy cannot exist within a free market, small government system make the two ideologies incompatible."
Patriarchal control of women is found in at least three paradigmatic contemporary contracts: the marriage contract, the prostitution contract, and the contract for surrogate motherhood. Each of these contracts is concerned with men's control of women, or a particular man’s control of a particular woman generalized. According to the terms of the marriage contract, in most states in the U.S., a husband is accorded the right to sexual access, prohibiting the legal category of marital rape. Prostitution is a case in point of Pateman’s claim that modern patriarchy requires equal access by men to women, in particular sexual access, access to their bodies. And surrogate motherhood can be understood as more of the same, although in terms of access to women’s reproductive capacities. All these examples demonstrate that contract is the means by which women are dominated and controlled. Contract is not the path to freedom and equality. Rather, it is one means, perhaps the most fundamental means, by which patriarchy is upheld.
Celeste Friend, "Contemporary Critiques of Social Contract Theory"
Boaz has fully mastered Patronizing Libertarian Voice, with which (male) libertarians use highly irrational arguments to dismiss every other politics as the beliefs of a child, while loudly insisting on their faultless rationality.
Nathan Robinson, "Oh God, Please Not Libertarianism..."
Libertarianism is like Leninism: a fascinating, internally consistent political theory with some good underlying points that, regrettably, makes prescriptions about how to run human society that can only work if we replace real messy human beings with frictionless spherical humanoids of uniform density.
Charles Stross, "Why I want Bitcoin to die in a fire"