Tuesday, June 09, 2009

It's a shame when people you like turn out to be profoundly retarded. There you are, introducing them to your parents and friends, when they run to the buffet and start shoving prawns up their noses, rubbing their bare chests on the pate, and trying to make sweet, sweet love to the skirting board.

Devil's Kitchen, as delightful and entertaining as he usually is, has become that pate-rubber.

In a fit of what I can only describe at shit-minded, smug, awfulness (note: I could describe it as other things. But I'm not going to), he has subscribed to the meme du jour of simpletons everywhere. To wit: everything bad in the world? That's left wing. Everything good? Is right.

What started as a piece of contrarianism from the idiot son of American conservatism has become a bog-standard piece of ill-thought-through conservative nonsense. It's quite possible, and I'm quite desperate to hope that DK meant this as nothing more than a piece of cunt-baiting mischief.

If so, consider me baited...

Let's consider this late-term abortion of a phrase: "collectivist policies—and thus of the Left."

To which I can only respond: since fucking when? Since actually fucking when? Since when have the monarchy and the armed forces and police, the most aggressively collectivist organisations we've yet to come up with, looked to the Left for their support?

The fact that some bloated, corporate imbeciles call themselves socialists whilst being authoriatarian, collectivist morons, doesn't mean that a state of being an authoritarian collectivist moron makes you a socialist. Quite the reverse. Just like being a rancid twat doesn't necessarily make you a conservative. Although it's a pretty good indicator.

The Left has been the home of Tom Paine, Benjamin Tucker, the Anti-Corn Law Leagues, the Chartists, the Suffragettes, Proudhon, Saint Simon, the Levellers, and those who have been fighting the State for hundreds of years. The Left has been anti-authoritarian for centuries, and we're meant to admire the Right for working out that the State wasn't particularly wonderful in the 1970s?

Unless it was Pinochet's state.

And, yes, I'll hold my hands up: my identification of myself as 'left' is deeply ingrained. No matter how interested in libertarianism or anarchism I am, I know whence I've come, and that's from the left. I am a creature of the left. A creature of anti-authoritarian, non-conformist politics; interested in raising the lot of each and every one of us. That's my emotional core. It's instinctive, and no matter where I end up, it will be for the left reasons.

It doesn't mean that I sit around wanking over pictures of Pol Pot, and thinking that Stalin was right - but he didn't go far enough, any more than I imagine DK licks chocolate spread off large monochrome posters of Mussolini, humming the Horst Wessel Song as he does. (Actually I would have just imagined that, but I don't know what DK looks like. I'm imagining Dustin Hoffman, but shorter, with Joe Pesci's crazed rat-eyes. Yeah. He'll fuck you up.)

I would imagine DK's instinctive association with the right, despite their history of being murdering, fascist, collectivist bastards is something to do with his upbringing as well. Something terribly wrong in his upbringing. The idea that any contemporary of mine can have lived through the early 1990s, and thought: "You know, these Conservatives are pretty good. When I can vote, it will certainly be for people like them." is frankly appalling.

I appear to have ranted, drifted.

The post DK cites is a lazy in its thinking as it is turgid in its prose. When attempting, loudly yet feebly, like a toddler insisting they haven't had dessert whilst wiping chocolate mousse from their bottom lip, to show that the BNP's policies are left-wing, Dizzy says:

The raising of the inheritance tax threshold to £1 million; - utterly
meanigless given that the economic will be in the shit and no one will
have that much to give away because of the socialist protectionism. A
dog whistle policy that is total inconsistent with the socialism
already laid out.
It also happens to be one of the Tories' key pledges. Heaven forfend that anyone notice that the language, and actually some of the policies of the BNP, much as he might like to describe them as left-wing, are those of the Conservative Party.

But that's nit-picking. It's playing their game.

It is a shame that there isn't a better showing for left-libertarianism in the British blogosphere. America has Kevin Carson, Rad Geek, In The Libertarian Labyrinth, and the Center for a Stateless Society; while we just have the bores at Samizdata and Devil's Kitchen, who at least possesses both a brain and some wit.

It's a shame that British libertarianism is so kneejerk and in many ways backwards in its online presence. It's a shame that some libertarians, so wedded to their 'right-wing' identity still feel the need to try to whitewash Pinochet whilst keeping their ideological skirts dry ('Pinochet was slightly not nice, but much, much better than any other conceivable thing, including the elected president, and he remained sexy to the end') or, and this is an absolute classic - fuck it, he can say it in his own words. This is a comment by The Wobbly Guy on a Samizdata post bemoaning the election of Obama:

"That's it. I'm pinning my hopes on China. I don't care if the Chinese
are authoritarians. They believe in capitalism, and I'm throwing in
with them."

And it's unfortunate that there aren't really any libertarians in the UK, just weapons fetishists, and plump men approaching 40, whose heads all look as if they have been boiled. And their refusal to engage with either the history or philiosophy of anti-statist thought (unless reading Ayn Rand counts) ensures that the LPUK will forever be a fringe party, a party to which thinking people are not invited.

If 'libertarians' could start being libertarians, and stop being 'right-wingers', however, that might not be the case...

(Full disclosure: This post was written when I was 63% drunk. The views expressed may not even be mine.)