14 comments on “Quote of the Day

  1. “It’s always other people’s freedom that needs to be curtailed.”

    That’s the difference between libertarians and Tories.

  2. Hmmm, my experience of libertarians is that they are not all that keen on other people’s freedoms either if they do not happen to agree. They just define “freedom” differently and are more open about their own.

    On Spitzer, I can only echo what many people in New York (both city and state) are thinking: couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy. 🙂

  3. Don’t tease us Helen;) Could you elaborate on your definition of “freedom” in the way it differs from a libertarians.

  4. “Hmmm, my experience of libertarians is that they are not all that keen on other people’s freedoms either if they do not happen to agree.”

    OK. And they call themselves libertarians?

    Sounds to me like you’re talking about Tories. They complain about the freedom to hunt foxes, but then are very keen indeed to ban alcopops, criminalise wearing hooded tops, and hunt down those engaging in homosexuals orgies (the last of these being a classic case of Freudian projection).

  5. “…and hunt down those engaging in homosexuals orgies (the last of these being a classic case of Freudian projection).”
    Or, you know, they could just think homosexuality is wrong instead of secretly wishing they were homosexuals themselves.

    Freud also said, “Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.”

    I have to wonder if those that often use Freud to claim someone they disagree with is “projecting” isn’t actually the one projecting themselves. With these people it’s never, “We just disagree on this issue.” It’s, “You secretly agree with me.” A classic case of egoism if there ever was one.

    I prefer to take people at their word and not read more into it unless I have cause. Some, however, don’t seem bound but such common decency.

  6. “Or, you know, they could just think homosexuality is wrong instead of secretly wishing they were homosexuals themselves.”

    You should read up on what happened in Operation Spanner and the follow-on ECJ case.

    In any case, a libertarian doesn’t think homosexuality is wrong to the point where they have to send in the police to stop it.

  7. Attributed to Koestler: “A mimophant is a hybrid species: a cross between a mimosa and an elephant. A member of this species is sensitive like a mimosa where his own feelings are concerned, and thick-skinned like an elephant, trampling over the feelings of others.”

    Substitute “liberties” for “feelings” and it sounds pretty apt to me.

  8. Well, no Kay Tie, when I say Libertarians I do not mean Tories. Strangely enough, I do have that much knowledge of politics. I do, however, mean people who maintain that they are Libertarians (maybe with a small l) but get awfully worked up about other people preferring to buy organic food or use homeopathic medicine, for instance. I am not making any judgements on those matters, merely think that people should be allowed to have freedom to do that as well as indulge in the activities Libertarians prefer to talk about endlessly.

  9. Helen,

    There are a /lot/ of people out there who would c laim to be Libertarians but frankly should be shot in the fucking face for daring to abuse the english language so much. This govt for instance claims to be concerned about our civil liberties. Ha!

    The lesson is – don’t believe people, make your own decisions about what people are and should be labelled based on your experience of them, not what they themselves claim..

    The English language is quite well defined. If an orange claimed to be an apple it would not make it so. In the same way, Liberal democrats should be prosecuted under the trades description act. They are neither liberal or democratic.

    Z.

  10. “Its okay to get worked up on those issues, so long as you don’t force people not to spend their own money how you think.”

    Indeed. I am very happy to people to pay for diluted water if they insist on it. But I get very hot and bothered when those people are told that it’s going to cure them of cancer.

  11. In my early days as a junior lawyer back in Oz, a partner I worked for described the job of lawyers as follows:

    The task of explaining to clients why the law applies to everyone else except them.

    Pretty much sums up at least one aspect of human desire.

  12. Helen:
    Its okay to get worked up on those issues, so long as you don’t force people not to spend their own money how you think.

    To deny that right would not be libertarian. Of course, like liberalism, or socialism, or any other political term, libertarianism is much abused.

  13. Kay Tie:

    The difference between us is that I’ve learned not to get quite as upset as I might have years ago. There is simply no way to effect such a change in peoples’ behavior short of establishment of one or another sort of totalitarian utopia; if all are to enjoy basic freedoms, some must be free to act unwisely. And to punish those who attempt to elicit such unwise behavior is limited by the necessity to keep free the rights of all to expression. A compromise of sorts is about the best that can be done, where those who cross some particular line (where “fraud” is ruled to start) are occasionally punished in order to serve as exemplars.

    Many years ago, an immigrant (Italian) con-man made the name “Ponzi” famous–right here in Philadelphia. Most are somewhat familiar–he simply paid outstanding “profits” to some previous investors out of growing funds entrusted to him by new investors. He was finally indicted, convicted, and imprisoned, and, upon completion of his sentence, deported to his native land. I have read accounts estimating that over 5000 awaited his arrival at the Italian port–most with funds they wished to place in his care. There’s an old saying about “a fool and his money” and there’s not much any of us can do about it.

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