Sunday, July 31, 2011

Individualism vs collectivism

Xanthippa has posted a five part series of videos that neatly explain key concepts (and misconceptions) relating the various political philosophies - individualism vs collectivism, right vs left, rights, liberty, anarchy, socialsim, communism, fascism, Naziism, etc.  The series is topped off with a presentation by John Robson on the Magna Carta.  Excellent.

Dedicated libertarians know this stuff inside out and do a great job of explaining it.  But what they haven't been able to do very successfully is to get a sufficiently large following to attain political power based on libertarian principles.  The Libertarian Party has been unable to do even what the Green Party has done. Not even close. Canucks are too well indoctrinated, from birth to death, in collectivism.  As the videos warn: "The evidence presented here was not part of your education".  All that "greedy", "selfish", "uncaring", libertarian individualism is just too scary.  Though it could be argued that the libertarian philosophy does enjoy some measure of representation within the Conservative Party.  Maybe that's the most they can reasonably expect for now.


johndoe124 said...

I tried watching it but by the second part the music became so irritating that I had to quit. Really crappy presentation. No wonder Libertarianism can't seem to get any traction.

Seems to me a simple question is, do you believe in slavery? If not, you are an individualist. If you say yes, or not sure, or no, but... then you are a collectivist. Most of us by nature are individualists. It's the politicians who are mostly collectivists. And that includes the current crop of Conservatives. Don't believe me? How many Conservative politicians agree that I shouldn't be a slave to the CBC? How many agree that I shouldn't be a slave to the multitude of regional development agencies that are nothing more that regional vote buying bureaucracies. How many would agree that I shouldn't be a slave to all kinds of Arts subsidies? How many would say I shouldn't be a slave to foreign aid?

The list goes on and on. Like the presentation says, the ultimate group is the State and it seems that the only job that our politicians are interested in is protecting the State. The individual has become a nonentity whose only purpose is to feed the State. Just look at the anarchy of governance that has beset all western democracies. And what is their solution? Take more from the individual well into perpetuity. Who cares if those who aren't even born yet might need that money for their own catastrophes or calamities. Our selfish, Progressive spendaholics think it all belongs to them. I spit in all of their "collective" faces.

melvin said...

Thanks for posting. These video's are a very useful tool that can and should be used to educate the members and supporters of every political party.
Folks always seam to get lost in the rhetoric of Politicians and indeed using these video's would help cut through the semantics of our slieght of hand leaders

JR said...

Yes the music is distracting but I found I could ignore it after a while. Still, official Libertarians come off as nerdy purists who need a large dose of professional help. If they hope to get anywhere politically they need a serious, professionally mapped out, long term strategy.

I can't disagree with most of your points. But while you may be right about most people being individualists at heart, they have also been heavily indoctrinated in collectivist thinking by the education system, the media and the social activists. Any individualism they may have (or have had) is probably very distorted and incoherent. Conservative politicians may be less compromised than ordinary voters but pander to collectivist sentiments out the practical need to get their votes.

Melvin, I think so too. But a big problem is how to get the libertarian message effectively distributed so that it has a chance to compete with the collectivist thinking that is so pervasive in our education system, etc (eg. see BC's new high school course in "social justice").