Chris Dierkes

Chris Dierkes (aka CJ Smith). 29 years old, happily married, adroit purveyor and voracious student of all kinds of information, theories, methods of inquiry, and forms of practice. Studying to be a priest in the Anglican Church in Canada. Main interests: military theory, diplomacy, foreign affairs, medieval history, religion & politics (esp. Islam and Christianity), and political grand bargains of all shapes and sizes.

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12 Responses

  1. Avatar mike farmer says:

    Considering most libertarians see important distinctions between libertarianism and utilitarianism, it’s odd that utilitarianism is the only logical ethical view in your mind. The idea that what’s good for the happiness/well being of the greatest number is not a central libertarian idea. It might be rationally proven that mass violation of individual rights could increase the happness of the majority, but a libertarian would be against such violations on moral grounds. On purely utilitarian grounds, killing poor people who don’t produce would add to the economic well-being of the nation, but libertarians wouldn’t support such a proposal. The libertarian does usually believe a society based on libertarian principles would increase the happiness/well being of most people, but this is a by-product not the primary aim — the primary aim is freedom from coercive measures which violate basic rights..Report

  2. Avatar greginak says:

    good stuff.Report

  3. Avatar E.D. Kain says:

    Chris – I think I share many similar struggles in terms of formulating some semblance of a coherent or expressible political view – though I think I’ve drifted even further from the Front Porch than you, and closer toward the belief that indeed capitalism can and does take into account constraints, that indeed it does it very well, though it doesn’t do it perfectly and this has consequences which people and their governments need to attempt to anticipate.Report

  4. Avatar mw says:

    “You need to be a team to play in this game. You have to have your team’s talking points at the ready and your artillery aimed. I mean s–t, how many people are left reading at this point and what do you do with a post like this? Not much.” – CD

    A thought provoking post. And a couple of the provokees…

    First, I felt compelled to quote the above just to – you know – prove that I got that far.

    Second, While I agree with and relate to almost every single observation in Chris’ excellent post, I find myself in a very different blogging place. Rather than become politically amorphous, I have become politically unstuck in the partisan firmament. I find myself firmly embedded in my team, and I enthusiastically adopt my team’s talking points, but only for so long as my team is out of power. As soon as my team takes control of all the levers of power, I change teams, and just as enthusiastically adopt my new team’s talking points. Of course, despite my enthusiasm, my team members tend to view me with some skepticism. I am sure I don’t know why.

    This begs the question – “Don’t you believe in any political principles?” The answer is yes, I believe that “true north” is to be found in the principles of the one team that I have no interest in joining – the Libertarians. I won’t make them my “team”, for the simple reason that I find them to be (for all practical policy purposes), politically impotent. It seems pointless. OTOH, I feel I can have some small impact on advancing their principles ( or more accurately – slowing the damage) by add my voice to those opposing the team in power. I’ve never really thought about it in these terms, but… there you go.

    Such is the blogging life of a committed Dividist. Of which – as near as I can tell – I am the only one.Report

    • Avatar Mark Thompson in reply to mw says:

      More seriously, this is a pretty good description of my current trajectory as well, although I’m not yet a committed Dividist. Still, I suddenly find myself spending more of my writing agreeing with the tribe with the (R) next to their name whereas a year ago, I spent most of my writing agreeing with the tribe with the (D) next to their name. The other difference is that a year ago I thought that the Libertarian Party could serve as a decent vehicle for a civil liberties protest vote. I wasn’t willing to consider myself part of the LP tribe, but I thought there was hope the LP could serve at least some sort of a worthwhile function. The failure of Bob Barr to get remotely close to a million votes disabused me of that notion.Report

      • Avatar mw in reply to Mark Thompson says:

        Split not young Skythompson. There is no split. Only divide. Straight D in ’06. Straight R in ’10. You will join me on the darkside. It is powerful and liberating. By the way – I am your father.Report

      • I think the Libertarian Party was a mistake, a premature move to be relevant, but in the wrong way — when you hook your wagon to a star, in this case being political power, make sure it’s not a falling star. Both parties are being overshadowed by global economic movement which the state will not control. The best the progressive movement can do is gain power within the US and play-act as social engineers on the national stage — libertarianism belongs, not in the US political arena, but in the international/global entrepreneurial market movement that transcends the nation-state.Report