Monday, September 22, 2014

The Late Great Libertarian Macho Flash

From: Libertarian Party of Michigan

Comment:  The original article from the Libertarian Party of Michigan site is a straight quote of Emerling-Cloud.

The underlying assumption of this 'approach' to political persuasion is the enormously overstated assertion a significant number of Libertarians ever used this 'technique.'   

Certainly Emerling-Cloud did - and noticed it cut down on his opportunities to sell his ideas and so make a profit.  In this period the LP was populated by far more women and men who were always civil and knew perfectly well what was, and was not acceptable.

But the assertion 'flashing' was a problem was generally accepted because Emerling-Cloud always cited someone doing it elsewhere.  

Defending the Undefendable, a fine book by Walter Block, a respected economist teaching at Loyola University in New Orleans,  is not an example of flashing, focusing as it does on victimless crimes and the persecution of those who choose to make life choices which are unconventional.

Having moderated a panel on this subject in 1977, with Professor Block as one of the panelists I can say categorically no Macho Flashing took place.  

The shock value of the ominous specter of 'Macho Flashing' added enormously to the profits Emerling-Cloud accrued on his lecture tours. 


… From Michael Emerling-Cloud’s Essence of Political Persuasion

(It was a large and expensive home.)

It was a large and expensive home. The architecture radiated impeccable taste. Seated around the dining table were five people: three moderates, a conservative and a libertarian. The conservative was a multimillionaire — and a generous political contributor. After dinner she turned to the libertarian and said, “Our hosts tell me you’re a libertarian. Maybe I’m a little naive, but I don’t know what that word means. Could you tell me about your beliefs?”
“Sure. I can explain them in a sentence: ‘Fuck the State!’ Libertarians want to get rid of as much government as they can.”

The woman was stunned. She dropped the subject and guided the conversation into other areas. In her mind, two things were associated with ‘libertarian': bad manners and gutter language.
In the early 1960’s, a student asked a spokesman for Objectivism what would happen to the poor in a free society. The spokesman answered, “If you want to help them, you will not be stopped.” What did the student conclude? That Objectivists are indifferent to human need, callous toward the unfortunate, and without solutions to the misery of poverty.  MORE

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