Get a mop and wipe it up!

Why Liberatarianz are irrelevant

, posted: 6-Nov-2008 19:59

I tried to engage in debate with Libertarianz to persuade them to use their party votes this week to help to change from the government that passed the Electoral Finance Act (with its repercussions on our freedom of speech) to a government made up of parties that were more strongly represented in the protests against that Act.

I seem to have failed.

Here is my conclusion after the debate.

I regard Libertarianz principles and policies as "nice if you can get them". And I wish them luck.

But personally I don't see that they have any hope in a million years of convincing enough people of their ideas that it will ever happen. Things are more likely to get worse, instead.

I joined in on protest marches with people from Act, National, Libertarianz and probably other parties too to fight together for freedom from the Labour/Green/NZFirst monstrosity called the Electoral Finanace Act imposed on NZ.

And yet Libertarianz regard their allies in that cause as "evil". As equivalent to the election-stealing Clark that so riled their leader that he issued a court challenge against her electoral overspending (and robbing the taxpayer to do so) in 2005.

I do not share their idealism.

Analogies are fraught with danger, because opponents can often find the edges where the analogy falters, and use that to try to defeat the argument.

Disclaimers aside, I see Libertarianz like a volunteer firebrigade, sitting around while the fire rages. There are other brigades trying to put out the fire using water hoses, foam, and even some with bucket chains. But the Libertarianz brigade is sitting around talking. Why? Because they are dreaming of a monsoon bucket. They have pictures of it on their station walls. They know it will be ideal for the job, (slightly overkill for this particular fire at the moment) but which they won't be able to afford until long after all of them, and all of the rest of us, are burnt to a crisp.

So please, members of Libertarianz, continue pontificating about perfection, and leave the rest of us to man the pumps.


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Comment by barf, on 7-Nov-2008 11:38

since when has the Electoral finance act suppressed YOUR free speech? I can see you blogging now. Perhaps you should READ the legislation and make up your OWN mind.

Author's note by dmw, on 7-Nov-2008 12:33

Laws are stepping stones to stronger laws.

Just because the EFA exempted certain blogs last year, doesn't mean they will be exempt from the more draconian version that Labour will draft next time they get into power. Look at what happened to bloggers in Saudi Arabia and Malaysia.

Every advance in the stifling of freedoms is a step closer to a totalitarian state.

Comment by JoeBloggs, on 9-Nov-2008 10:27

The Libertarianz seek an anarchist government. This just belies the foundation of principles that I believe society rests upon. We need to take care of the elderly and sick. When speaking to one of the founders, I thought their primary weakness is in believing (or at least professing to believe) that people are inherently good and altruistic. This is just not true, Karl Marx inadvertently proved this with failed communism. People are greedy and unless their peers can judge them and the community can work together as a whole, our damned selfish nature rears its ugly head. Don't even get me started on what a cock-up true capitalism can eventually become. I would leave NZ if we even started to approach the consumerist tight-rope economy of the US. There's a middle ground and thankfully the majority of NZ recognises this by consistently voting close to the centre. Research anarchism and you should understand more about the party. There is much literature on the idealisms and underlying reasons it can't work in our society published in almost every media form. Communism also didn't work despite it's utopian possibilities.

Author's note by dmw, on 9-Nov-2008 10:43

Fair comment, JB.

Actually, I found it quite fitting that the size of the Libertarianz party vote was matched only by the rationale of their supporters. Before special votes:

National   951145   45.5%
Labour    706666   33.8%
Green     134622   6.4%
NZFirst     88072   4.2%
ACT         77843   3.7%
Maori      46894   2.2%
JAP          19536   0.9%
United     18629   0.9%
Kiwi         11659   0.6%
Bill/Ben    10738   0.5%
Dope       7589   0.4%
Pacific      6991   0.3%
Family     6973   0.3%
Alliance   1721   0.1%
SocCred   1112   0.1%
Libz        1070   0.1%

Comment by JoeBloggs, on 9-Nov-2008 13:28

Wow, that says it all. I didn't know how poorly Libz faired. I think ACT only got those numbers because of their tough stance on crime. God help us if they get any of their privatised school/health policies into consideration.

Author's note by dmw, on 9-Nov-2008 13:46

Personally, I favour the Singaporean health system as a public/private system that works, without costing the earth. But why are you so against the ACT education policy, JB? Award a full education scholarship to every child to be spent at the public or private schools of the parents' choice. Apparently this system or similar is already working well in Sweden, Netherlands, Ireland and Australia. I can understand opposition from teachers' unions, who seem intent on protecting poor quality teachers from facing reality. But as a parent, I am very much in favour of more choice of schools for my children.

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David White
New Zealand

Goon fan, .NET developer, contrarian seeker of truth