Hipster libertarianism

In a recent essay, occasional LRC columnist C.J. Maloney praises the AK-47 as the Automatic For The People. Yeah, baby!
So next May Day, assuming you remember it at all, take a moment to honor the memory of the millions slaughtered over the lethally stupid idea of communism, but give a nod to God’s great mercy, to His mysterious way that willed that very same idea to birth the AK-47. It gave to the working masses the ability to defend themselves from the more virulent strain of politicians; it is the sword of the common man. Of all the firearms yet dreamed up by mankind, it is the automatic for the people.

But don't go calling Homeland Security, folks. This denizen of New York City, the most highly taxed, highly regulated municipality in the country assures us today that Americans are way too feeble and stupefied to engage in armed rebellion.

Today, give me liberty or give me death no longer rings true, the typical American is content to put up with any outrage because he’s so ideologically stripped as to no longer have any idea he should be outraged. Harboring a completely materialistic view of politics that equates material comfort with freedom, he’ll bear any assault on liberty with timid submission so long as the hi-def cable stays on. The intellectuals fare no better in this regard, as they are the very ones who spread the ideas that made hi-def cable more important to us than trial by jury.

In the event of rebellion, the American people would lack any leadership with the ability, or even the urge, to guide them back to liberty. Even if the occasional outrage morphs into a tea party, the vast majority of Americans, lead by the intellectuals, take most assaults with quiet approval, and for now I thank God for it. To go to war is something even the most ignorant savage does with relish; but to start a revolution requires the ability for calm, rational thought and a manly courage to risk it all that does not currently exist in this country. Where once our forefathers shot at government troops marching through the Massachusetts countryside towards Lexington and Concord, today we are a frightened little flock that goes to pieces at the thought of Goldman Sachs suffering a well-deserved bankruptcy. 2010 America does not possess what successful revolutions are made of.

Now, you would think this ball-busting, revolutionary giant of a man would go on to describe what short work he would make of the government. But not to fear, for Maloney pulls himself back from the brink:

So, thank you all who sent me a kind invitation to share a mess kit and a fight, but when you Thomas Jefferson wannabes grab your AK-47s, pull on your surplus camouflage uniforms, and go rushing off into the mountains please count me out and don’t wait up. I’ll be watching the slaughter from afar, Barcelona perhaps, Amsterdam more likely, and doubtless I’ll wish good luck and God speed to you all.

As of right now this country is simply not prepared for secession, civic disobedience, or rebellion; and under the current regime they all would be considered the same in the eyes of the ruling elite. Any move in that direction would be setting you up for a hopeless task; to free a people that neither wish for liberty or could handle it if won.

Read the op-ed pages and editorials of any newspaper, glance at the comments section to any Internet news site, and listen to the interviewed "man on the street," read our intellectuals’ monthly journals and agree; modern America is too uncivilized and savage for freedom.

If you wish for a change back to liberty, forget your rifle – grab your pen.

Apparently the plan now is to give the bureaucrats the mother of all ink stains. This is the sort of stuff that convinces me most libertarians are useless as agents of change. For the most part, they are cossetted individuals far more concerned with maintaining their hipster lifestyle than the dirty work of abolishing the State. And when I say 'dirty work,' I mean shouldering a firearm and presenting as credible a threat to parasitic government as it presents to us.

Now, I should acknowledge that many of us like Maloney and other Gothamites not privy to fully vested trust funds would take quite a hit if one day the people decide that they Have Had Enough. I don't see lawyers such as myself, for example, having much marketability in organic society. Fortunately for him, as Maloney himself tells us, he will have long since turned tail and run to high-tax, high-regulation, high-subsidized, politically-correct Amsterdam or Barcelona. Solidarnosc, brother.


Anonymous said…
Not to mention the AK47 really isnt that great; its the rifle for hipsters who are gun novices. Go to any gun show, and the only people shouldering them will be gang-banger wannabes.Its alleged greatness only stems from it was simply the rifle the Soviets spread around most - it isnt like your average Mozambican insurgent was given a wide selection. They could just have easily spread around the SKS or the AK74 and the hipster libertarians would be claiming it for the mantle of greatest rifle for leftist Che-wannabes.

But you're right about your further point - most libertarians are leftists and bring with them the worst leftist flaws, which makes them useless for any real change.
Anonymous said…
One follow up thought: I've always found libertarians to be some of the rudest people on the planet. Despite their protests, most libertarians are modals, which Rothbard hilariously characterized as:

" One of the things that strikes a person who first encounters Modal Libertarians is their surpassing rudeness, their overwhelming boorishness, their total lack of manners. It is libertarians, and only libertarians, who will call you up, as a perfect stranger, and proceed to denounce you for various deviations, or for alleged contradictions on page 851. It is only libertarians who, learning a few syllogisms about liberty, and having read next to nothing, consider themselves perfectly qualified to harangue learned men on their alleged errors."
Too many libertarians pin their hopes on anarchy delivering the non-hierarchical society they dreamed about back when they were Marxists. In fact, the State is the only institution capable of making everybody underneath it equal. Now that the State's legitimacy is threatened, the anarchists suddenly realize that it is the State that has been subsidizing the exercise of various rights all along.
Anonymous said…
Makes you wonder what they'll think when anarchy does come. Something tells me they will be among the first clamoring for the return of the state when it turns out the world isnt an egalitarian paradise.

When you look at the profile of the average libertarian, this isnt surprising to me. Sure there are some rugged individualists among their numbers, but most of them are a bunch of post-masculine weenies. Can you really envision any of the twenty-something college kids forming ranks to fight for their libertarian order?