X-Message-Number: 23078
Date: Wed, 10 Dec 2003 22:39:58 -0700
From: Mike Perry <>
Subject: Questioning Pure Libertarianism

Ron Havelock, #23065:
>...To some extent the
>US is a libertarian country and that is probably why we cryonauts are by far
>the strongest and most viable here in the US.

This may be true, but I also question whether a radical or "pure" form of 
libertarianism would be the best system to advocate, in part because I 
think human nature might not allow it to persist in such pure form.

As one possible case in point, I understand that some generations ago, in a 
certain geographical locale, the government was very weak and the people 
sensed a need to more or less set up a system of their own to maintain 
order and such. At that point they could have opted for a highly 
libertarian system, but instead what emerged was more of a feudal-type 
system with patrons, clients, and brokers. If you were not powerful 
yourself you allied yourself with someone who was, and in return for your 
loyal and material support you would obtain protection and services.

I read about this in the book, _A Man of Honor_. The author, Joseph 
Bonanno, was describing his native Sicily, and the "system," which he 
referred to as his "Tradition," was exported to some extent to the U.S., 
where it became known as La Cosa Nostra. I am not saying that an attempt to 
set up a libertarian system would necessarily devolve into something like 
this. Its creators probably were never seriously contemplating such a 
system anyway, and the U.S. version, with all its notoriety, was in some 
ways significantly different from its Sicilian parent, and may have become 
still more different. Bonanno was not necessarily the perfect, objective 
historian either. But I think that what happened with his Tradition says 
something about human nature and I would advocate proceeding with caution 
in any proposal of radical reform. I also think certain attitudes among 
radical libertarians are harmful and/or counterproductive. I do, on the 
other hand, think we badly need _more_ libertarianism in certain areas so 
that, for example, each competent adult (at least) could choose a premortem 
cryopreservation when the time of need came. But here I want to offer some 
thoughts for toning down what I see as too radical in one way or another. 
Naturally I am interested in readers' responses.

Three proposals for consideration:

1. Citizens should not have weapons of mass destruction.

2. Barring exceptional and unlikely cases, it would be wrong to advocate 
killing non-libertarian politicians, bureaucrats, and their supporters.

3. Before a libertarian system is strongly advocated at the national level, 
it should be tested and prove itself at a more limited, regional level.

Best wishes to all (and a kevlar vest),
Mike Perry

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