24 definitions by Tex in Tex

A term coined by Austrian economist Murray Rothbard to describe people who call themselves libertarians defining liberty as moral license (see libertine). They are former Marxists, contemporary liberals, practicing drug-users, homosexuals, self-appointed members of the avant-garde, haters of tradition, anti-religious (especially anti-Christian) atheists, alienated teens and young adults, politically correct leftists, humanitarians who see the established culture and morality as equally or more threatening than an expansive government. They also reject the classical liberalism that the United States of America is founded upon. In fact, many of these people have not read or do not care to read the writings of the Founders of the United States or the philosophers who influenced them. If they do appeal to the Founders, they cite quotes taken out of context to support their leftist views. They also care little for community, culture, or history.

These "libertarians" have taken on the name to justify a nihilistic view of the world, where restraint of any kind is removed so that they can indulge their appetites. Many modal libertarians have an appreciation of the free market because they realize the market can supply their drugs, pornography, and prostitutes more effectively. They confirm the fears expressed by Daniel Bell of the cultural contradictions of capitalism where increased levels of wealth produced by capitalism undermine the traditional values based on self-restraint that make capitalism successful. The same ethic of self-indulgence explains their support for abortion on demand and unrestricted euthanasia. The logic here is to kill anyone who cannot keep up and is deemed to have an inferior "quality of life."

Former *Reason* magazine editor, Nick Gillespie, personifies this anti-social trend. He praises as "Heroes of Freedom" Madonna, Dennis Rodman, Larry Flynt, and William Burroughs alongside such true heroes as Milton Friedman and Barry Goldwater. Gillespie epitomizes this brand of libertarianism by posing as the angry young man hipster too cool for the rest of us poor unimaginative slobs.

These so-called libertarians are more interested in civil liberties that undercut law enforcement not because of fear of an abuse of power but because of their rejection of the imposition of pain including just punishment. Instead, they unrealistically believe that if all people are treated as equals and given opportunity to get rich in the market, then there would be no crime.

Although more traditional or paleo-libertarians such as Ron Paul are strict constitutionalists, modal libertarians are all in favor of using judicial activism to further their social goals of removing barriers to self-destructive behavior or placing barriers in the way of law enforcement and national security without regard to precedent or the text of the Constitution.

These bits of meliorism go hand in hand with their non-interventionism in foreign policy. Instead of opposing foreign wars to protect the lives and traditions of citizens of their own country, they believe that if wealth and opportunity can be expanded, then people would live harmoniously together in a peaceful cosmopolitan world. The basic assumptions about human nature and the human condition only differs from the leftist internationalist by replacing a super-statist/socialist order with a super market capitalist order that would transcend the nation state and particular local cultures. The same leftist vision is simply implemented by a different strategy. This line of thinking explains their support of mass immigration. It also explains why one does not hear these libertarians defend freedom of association.

Modal libertarians disdain tradition or any sense of social stability. They relish change for the sake of change. They crave novelty and destruction of anything that they have become bored with. Virginia Postrel, now writing for the *New York Times*, is a prime example of this love of frenetic activity. She misquotes Hayek on the nature of change as a thorough-going, radical process that countenances no constancy or commitment.

Modal libertarianism could be called left libertarianism. There is a variation of libertarianism which stresses voluntary collectivist social and economic arrangements that are still respectful of the right to private property and non-intervention by the State. These libertarians argue for people to choose to pool private property and live communally in various frameworks. This is not modal libertarianism. This type of leftist libertarianism is still consistent with the more traditional libertarian framework because each individual in such communities chooses to participate. There is a long history of such communities in the United States. Modal libertarians are more interested in re-shaping the world to fit their mold and defining the results as achieving freedom. Modal libertarians seem to slip on the term, 'liberty,' moving from what Issiah Berlin called "negative liberty" to "positive liberty." John Stuart Mill fell into this confusion in his writing as he tried to blend liberalism with egalitarianism. Mill is the cross-over figure from classical to modern liberalism. Something similar is going on with modal libertarians.

A lot of people calling themselves libertarians on the internet are teen-agers and young adults who are simply stuck in a mindless rebellion against all authority. Modal libertarians tap into this unrelenting, destructive rebellion in many young people who have been neglected or mistreated by self-absorbed parents. Ayn Rand's writings look especially inviting to these folks.

Even though some of the language and the policy positions cohere with those of Locke, Jefferson, Montesquieu, Mises, Hayek, Friedman, et al., the meanings they pour into the terms and phrases used by traditional libertarians and classical liberals are completely different. Unfortunately, the Libertarian Party has departed from their earlier candidates such as John Hospers, Roger MacBride, and Ron Paul and have moved to this liberal/leftist vision. We are now witnessing Bob Barr flip-flopping all over himself to appease these nihilists who have taken over the mantle of libertarianism.
Traditionalist libertarian: "I am looking at the Libertarian Party platform and see mostly a leftist agenda. What is going on here?"

Modal libertarian: "Yes, we modal libertarians have moved away from that rightist repressive model of liberty to true liberty. The real enemy of the people is not the State so much as it is traditional morality, bigotry, Christianity, and nationalism. Conservatives are the real enemy now."

by Tex in Tex June 17, 2008
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Capital city of Georgia. Originally named Terminus because of its strategic location for transportation. It became known as Marthasville named for the daughter of an early mayor. In the 1850's the name of the emerging city was changed to Atlanta. There are conflicting stories on the name--one is that Atlanta was named for the ancient lost city of Atlantis while another story is that it is a shortened name for the railroad connection with the West, Atlantica-Pacifica.

Atlanta was and is a central trade and transportation center. The fall of Atlanta in 1864 was key to the Federal effort to preserve the Union. The psychological boost to the Northern cause as well as the economic impact of the loss of Atlanta to the Confederacy insured the re-election of President Lincoln who had faced a serious challenge to his presidency in the 1864 election due to many Northerners' weariness of war. The city was burned by General Sherman after a forced evacuation of the civilians. The Confederates destroyed their armaments adding to the destruction of the city. Civilians had to live in the woods for months after Sherman's destruction of the city.

After the war, the city rebuilt turning to a modern commercial economy encouraged by the vision of Henry Grady. This more business-oriented approach formed the basis of the "New South." The New South replaced the traditional, Jeffersonian view of Southern culture that focused on tranquility and cooperation with a Hamiltonian view that emphasizes competition and frenetic activity. This ethos has been taken up and intensified by 20th Century political, business, and media leaders in Atlanta. The symbol of Atlanta, the Phoenix, is descriptive of how the native Atlantans of the late 19th Century rebuilt the city after its destruction by the Federal government.

The New South philosophy that worked well to rebuild Atlanta from the ashes that the Federal government left Atlanta in has now morphed into a cut-throat, anti-social "ethic" that Jefferson feared would take hold if the Hamiltonian view became dominant. Atlanta is now characterized by greed and aggressiveness. People there are typically hyper-active, aggressive, and detached. The political, economic climate is solidly pro-growth at all costs.

The only social bond in Atlanta is commercialism. Atlanta is a boomtown with people flooding into the area simply to make money. No one has anything in common. People rarely know their neighbors or care to do so.

There is no common culture to facilitate establishing and maintaining contacts and relationships. There is no effort to preserve culture in Atlanta. If anyone attempts to do so, they are likely to be labeled a racist. Mary Rose, Charlie Rose's former wife and a former anchor woman in Atlanta, has taken the lead to restore and open Martha Mitchell's house to the public. The house of the *Gone with the Wind* author was torched several times by arsonists who were determined to destroy one of the few landmarks not already demolished by developers. The fires were likely politically and racially motivated. "White Columns," the studio for Channel 2 that was built in the Greek-revival style was demolished and replaced by a modern building. People who come to town looking for traditional Southern culture and vestiges of Atlanta's past are discouraged from such interests. Tourists will find nothing like the charm and history of Savannah, Charleston, or New Orleans in Atlanta. Virtually all references to Atlanta's past have been torn down or suppressed by this modern cabal to make Atlanta into a monocultural icon.

Atlanta's business, media, and political leaders seem to suffer from a massive inferiority complex trying to curry favor with the leftist elites in the North. They hate traditional culture and actively seek to destroy it.

The city's native population has been overwhelmed by the influx of non-Georgians into the city and its surrounding suburbs. Native Atlantans are few and far between. The city's population is highly transitive. They are from all over the U.S., and since the 1996 Olympics, from all over the world. Consequently, there is very little indigenous culture in the Atlanta area. If the News Media led by WSB and the *Atlanta Journal* find any remnants of Southern culture, they will cast these traditions in racist terms trying to destroy them. At best, the Media ignores Southern traditions. Atlanta is a rootless, colorless place. It is a city "too busy to hate," but it is also a city "too busy for civility and culture."

The natural environment is beautiful. Atlanta is a city in a forest. Earlier developers who were not as greedy and irresponsible preserved the trees and natural sloping terrain. But socially and architecturally, Atlanta is now a vast wasteland. The buildings are modern and ugly. A few of the newer buildings do have some style compared with the boxy, cubist monstrosities that dominate the skyline. Tom Wolfe famously described the art museum as looking like a chemical factory.

As General Sherman said, "War is hell" when criticized for deliberately targeting civilians in Atlanta for bombardment and death. I would add to that insight that living in Atlanta now is hell.
Tourist arriving in Atlanta: "Where is Gone with the Wind? Where is the Southern history and charm?"

They are gone with the wind.
by Tex in Tex January 23, 2008
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The personification of what the U.S. has become along with its distorted conception of liberty. Ron Jeremy is to late 20th Century and early 21st Century America what Thomas Jefferson was to late 18th Century America.
Ted Koppel reported that he found himself near Ron Jeremy in an airport. Never having heard of Jeremy and finding out who he was as people mobbed Jeremy, Koppel was horrified to discover a porn star was so well-known and admired.
by Tex in Tex May 4, 2008
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A continuation of the Bohemian "tradition" originating in France around the turn of the 20th Century. These folks were anti-bourgeois, anti-Victorian, and anti-traditionalist. They were avant-garde artists who disdained what they considered ordinary but ended up in a futile cycle of radical change for the sake of change soon drifting into silliness and nihilism.

The Beat Generation and then the Hippie movement tried to pick up this stand of thought and way of life in the mid twentieth century. The existential hero who is cool and detached, not caring what anyone else thinks of him is also a mid century fashion that picked up on this theme.

The cool hipster assumes a persona of crass selfishness, irresponsibility, mindless rebellion, cynicism, ironic mocking of anything meaningful or noble, cold reserve, uncaring indifference toward others while paradoxically advocating a politics of compassion toward certain groups favored by leftists, a dull, dumb countenance, and most of all, being constantly out of sorts--a real sour puss. They usually take on a studied disheveled appearance to further the affection of not caring what others think of them. They also prefer to dress in black.

Of course, most of these folks are as phony as you can get. They look as though they are dead on the inside--enthusiasm or being earnest or being genuine are completely missing from their emotional repertoire. They shun kindness,loyalty, spirituality, or empathy as uncool.
"Man, like, I dig myself and fuck you, man, like."--An example of a hipster sentence. Complete sentences, of sorts, are few and far between for these folks who are too cool to talk in coherent language.
by Tex in Tex February 2, 2008
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Hip, cool, "jet-set" version of monoculture.
Liberal elitist hipster: That is so horrible that MacDonald's is everywhere in the world. They are breaking down indigenous culture and traditional folkways. Monoculture everywhere! It is sickening. (Moments later) It is so wonderful that we are breaking down backward ways of life in the American South and any other traditional culture. We want to spread the cosmopolitan ethos everywhere. I am a citizen of the world!
by Tex in Tex February 22, 2008
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The Italian sociologist living in the early 20th Century observed that the distribution of wealth and income remains roughly the same in modern industrialized societies no matter what governmental policies are pursued. A corollary of the Iron Law is the "circulation of elites" where groups vie to be the dominant group under various guises including equality and social justice, but there is always an elite no matter what.
Liberal elitist humanitarian: Let's pass legislation to make a more equal, fairer society.

Conservative realist: That will get us no where except you leftists will be in power rather than us. There is the brutal fact of Pareto's Iron Law. We cannot escape inequality of result.

Liberal elitist humanitarian: Well, I know, but at least we will be ahead of you conservatives. We hate you because you do not love everyone as we leftists do.
by Tex in Tex February 25, 2008
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Taken to the extreme, an irrational fear of strangers or more broadly, a fear of those who are different. Taken in a more moderate way, a rational fear of those who are different in some significant way, such as race, ethnicity, culture, politics, religion. Since people live together in families and communities where blood ties and cultural similarities foster cooperation, those who are different undermine this social solidarity. The very presence of people who are different in appearance or belief or language make the majority of people in a community wary of those who do not share a common interest in preserving the dominant group.

This fear is justified since people naturally view those who look, believe, and act in a similar manner as extensions of themselves. Since people are naturally selfish, they will lend aid and befriend those whom they see as similar to themselves. Conversely, since people are naturally selfish and seek to dominate others to enhance their own power, they will naturally first seek to dominate those who are different. People who are different are more likely to be seen as objects rather than fellow humans.

When confronted with these threats to social cooperation based on viewing others as objects, it is rational to foster laws, social and economic policy, and attitudes that preserve one's own kind in power. To do otherwise is to hand power over to those who will destroy one's own way of life, culture, and political system.

Political power as well as cultural and social power are zero-sum games. When one group gains in the same geographical region, other groups must lose.
Campus Leftist: "Oh, those conservatives really show their xenophobia in opposing open immigration. That shows what closed minds they have and how paranoid they are. Of course, we had to shout down a conservative speaker last night at the lecture series, and drive him off campus in order to promote diversity and pluralism. We would never be prejudiced as those conservatives are."
by Tex in Tex February 1, 2008
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