April 11, 2013

"At Howard University, Rand Paul Falsely Claims He Never Opposed the 1964 Civil Rights Act."

Writes Adam Serwer in Mother Jones, quoting a 2010 interview in which Rand Paul said:
PAUL: I like the Civil Rights Act in the sense that it ended discrimination in all public domains, and I'm all in favor of that.

INTERVIEWER: But?

PAUL: You had to ask me the "but." I don't like the idea of telling private business owners—I abhor racism. I think it’s a bad business decision to exclude anybody from your restaurant—but, at the same time, I do believe in private ownership. But I absolutely think there should be no discrimination in anything that gets any public funding, and that's most of what I think the Civil Rights Act was about in my mind.
Back in 2006, some of you may remember, I got into a very uncomfortable situation with some libertarians over precisely this issue. Rand Paul wasn't around, but I got a close-up view of some libertarians displaying an attitude about private race discrimination that literally made me cry:

What disturbed me was the assertion in the writings that the public accommodations provisions of the 1964 Civil Rights Act were pernicious. And when I said that at the conference, a lot of the participates immediately challenged me. Did I think the law was right?!! This is what I mean by the excessive belief in the libertarian principle at the abstract level. These folks -- including [Reason Magazine's Ron] Bailey, I think -- would have left restaurants and hotels to continue discriminating against black people as long as they pleased. Someone asserted that the free market would solve the problem better than government regulation. I said that the restaurant in the case about the constitutionality of the 1964 Civil Rights Act in fact made more money by seating only white customers and serving take-out to black people. One other person at the table agreed, but the point was pushed past. It didn't fit the abstraction. I thought the failure to deal with this point was very damaging to the credibility of what we were reading and talking about.
Much more at that second link. What we were reading and talking about — at a big, well-funded conference — was "a slim book touting a political philosophy that was used in its time very specifically to oppose civil rights and desegregation."
Too many people at the table wanted to talk -- at length and repetitiously -- about abstractions, such as the meaning of the word "virtue." I found this perverse and offensive.... Why should I respect this man [Frank] Meyer at all to want to engage with his book? He wrote screeds in the National Review urging the southern governors to take over the National Guard and fight off school desegregation!
I have no idea if Rand Paul has the cold inner core that I saw amongst the libertarians in 2006. I would like to like him. But this point about private discrimination and the free market... Paul needs to tell the truth!

378 comments:

1 – 200 of 378   Newer›   Newest»
Nonapod said...

It all comes down to what you feel the role of government should be. Do you feel it's government's duty to enforce decent human behavior (beyond just Rule of Law, ie don't kill each other)?

Chip S. said...

... this point about private discrimination and the free market..

I'm not sure what you think "this" point is.

The discrimination that pervaded the deep South was part of a government-enforced system of semi-apartheid. IIRC, C. Vann Woodward argued a long time ago that Jim Crow laws were enacted to stop the growing commercial and social interaction between blacks and whites.

It's true that some libertarians tend to be too glib about the speed w/which a free market will drive discriminatory firms out of business. Where there is a desire for discrimination by customers or workers, firms will discriminate. But what is surely true is that people pay an economic price for discriminating in a market economy.

ricpic said...

In the name of eliminating the dreaded racism the leftist thugs have destroyed free association and property rights.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

So does Adam Serwer have any evidence that Rand Paul ever Opposed the civil rights act?

In the quote he comments on an idea that he doesn't like. But he never says whether he supports or opposes the act as a whole.

BDNYC said...

You cried? How ridiculous.

David said...

Liberals are ludicrous when they push their doctrines to places where application of the doctrines creates unjust results. Ditto the libertarians on public accommodations laws. Their doctrine had not produced just treatment of blacks for a 100 years. I think 100 years of evidence was enough to override the doctrine.

CJinPA said...

It's never too soon to demonize what appear to be principled potential GOP presidential candidates. (Not that the prof is doing that.)

This way, the Left and the media (but I repeat myself) leave only unthreatening McCain Romney types. Paul is undergoing now the thorough probing that Obama has yet to receive.

To be fair, though, he's only in his fifth year as president. There's time.

whswhs said...

The fact is that segregation was never maintained exclusively by the free market. There were always laws on the books in southern states that prohibited private property owners integrating, even if they wanted to. Textile factory owners, for example, were told by the law that they could hire black workers as well as white only if they had two separate sets of stairs, and two separate sets of restrooms (though it was fine if black janitors cleaned the white restrooms!). Streetcar companies were required to have segregated seating. The old south was preoccupied with the fear that, if you let people make their own decisions about their own property, some of them would decide they could make more money from both races than from just one, and would put profit ahead of community values; and so southerners were actively hostile to the free market—the agrarian conservative movement was all about putting "community values" above profit.

Now, it seems to me that the south would hardly have been so determined to enforce segregation by law if they had not had realistic fears that segregation would not survive the culturally erosive effect of free market capitalism.

I think Rand Paul is drawing the line in the right place. For anything that the government does, we should have strict race-blind equality. But for private owners—let them make whatever choices they like, and let them pay the price for their choices.

Sofa King said...

You cried? How ridiculous.

Don't be so sexist.

Bender said...

Before we start calling him a liar, just exactly how is Rand Paul supposed to have "opposed" the Civil Rights Act of 1964? Has the law ever been put to him to have a vote on it?

El Camino Real said...

Not everything that is objectionable - even to a vast majority of the citizenry - requires a law.

The Drill SGT said...

Raul's view, and I'm not a particular fan or either Paul, makes more sense and is even handed, than that of our POTUS, AG and DOJ.

In their view, the CRA is designed to be applied with a one-sided racist intent. It only applies to whites as the offender. Traditional (and newly added) Protected Minorities, though they may be in the majority can never vicitmize white people.

Bob Ellison said...

What is the blog-point here? Rand Paul's politics, or your reaction to them?

Ann Althouse said...

"You cried? How ridiculous."

Canary in the coal mine.

Ann Althouse said...

Toxic!

Robert Zaleski said...

To be fair, we do the opposite now. There are many more benefits to being Black, and I have even heard comments from people that "It pays to be black" on occasion, and another minority friend joked he'd start a middle-class white boy scholarship if he ever got rich.

It's a tough place to draw the line, where do you have it go too far? Was Obama's EO last year to prosecute Principals for punishing too many black kids and not enough white or asian kids right? I mean, c'mon, who thinks inner-city teachers are really punishing for racist reasons?

More likely more of these kids are coming from broken homes. And so ALL of the students will now suffer.

Was regulation justified then, maybe, is it now? I can't say... Doesn't mean NO ONE is racist, but I think these BS laws just adds to it, rather than diminish it.

Hagar said...

Was Rand Paul born yet in 1964?

My personal feeling about it was and is that yes, the act was unconstitutional.

However, what was going on was not just that some private individuals were denying accommodations to Black people, or whoever, on their own hook, which ought to be their privilege if they so chose to make asses of themselves.

What was going on is that there was a pervasive conspiracy whereby a section of the populace threatened their fellow citizens with retaliative measures if they ever thought of serving Black customers, or, horrors!, renting or selling property to them.

You can't run a country that way forever, the time had come, and something needed to be done, and Lyndon Johnson did it.

If you have a better suggestion for how could have been done better, let's hear it!

Ann Althouse said...

There's a inhumanity vibe to the libertarians, and it's something that's offputting to women, generally. If the GOP wants to go there, they are going to lose the women even more than they already have.

Maybe there's a way to do it and Paul (and Cruz) can figure it out, but consider the women!

Bob Ellison said...

The Drill SGT said "Raul's view..."

Interesting concatenation or typo, especially since it would rhyme with Rawls.

Bob Ellison said...

Ann Althouse said "There's a inhumanity vibe to the libertarians, and it's something that's offputting to women, generally. If the GOP wants to go there, they are going to lose the women even more than they already have.

Maybe there's a way to do it and Paul (and Cruz) can figure it out, but consider the women!"

Could we instead consider being smart? I'm not saying women aren't smart, not going there at all. Nope.

Bender said...

But the broader question is not whether one favors the goals of the Civil Rigths Act of 1964, which many DEMOCRATS actively opposed for substantive reasons. The greater question is whether it was within the constitutional power of Congress to enact it.

And that comes down to the age old question of whether the ends justify the means. Does a desirable end justify a wrongful means?

In point of fact, the 1964 law is not really a civil rights law, it is a regulation of commerce. Congress did not resort to its power under the 13th or 14th Amendments, it proceeded under the Commerce Clause and its flimsy precedents like the Wickburn case.

The question is whether a kid who sells lemonade and hot dogs with ketchup at a sidewalk stand is subject to the control of the federal government because the sugar in the lemonade and the ketchup on the hot dog came from out-of-state.

Sofa King said...

There's a inhumanity vibe to the libertarians, and it's something that's offputting to women, generally. If the GOP wants to go there, they are going to lose the women even more than they already have.

???

That's an obnoxious argument, relying as it does on a stereotype of women being too emotionally sensitive to be able to understand and accept logical arguments. And more, treating it as something to be appeased and catered to.

And you, a law professor!

Jay said...

about private race discrimination that literally made me cry

The silly obsession with race you lilly white baby boomers have is embarrassing.

Skyler said...

Ann Althouse said...

"There's a inhumanity vibe to the libertarians, and it's something that's offputting to women, generally. If the GOP wants to go there, they are going to lose the women even more than they already have."

So is your argument that we should repeal women's suffrage laws, since you seem to think they are emotional and illogical?

Free speech means being able to say racist things. Freedom means being able to contract and barter with customers you want to do business with.

Your argument against freedom of association is the same used by censors trying to limit free speech.

Nonapod said...

There's a inhumanity vibe to the libertarians, and it's something that's offputting to women

It's really a communication problem. A lot of libertarians enjoy making statements that can sound harsh or absurd absent examination, and I think it's partially for shock value to get people to pay attention. Unfortunately I think it turns off a lot of people who might otherwise agree with the philosophies and reasonings behind libertarianism if they had them explained carefully to them.

RC3 said...

If Democrats don't want to go there, they are going to lose the men even more than they already have.

Consider the men!

AllenS said...

displaying an attitude about private race discrimination that literally made me cry

Oftentimes, I'll fall to the floor crying, kicking and screaming about racism every fucking time that I hear the words: Black Congressional Caucus.

paul a'barge said...

...Paul needs to tell the truth!...

You accuse him of lying.

Specify the lie; spell it out, point it out, back it up.

Because I don't think you can.

Balfegor said...

Even though there's individual exceptions, as there always will be, the fact that segregationists needed laws to enforce segregation strongly suggests that if you left business owners up to themselves, market forces would tend to disadvantage segregation. To the extent segregation was enforced through private law, rather than public law -- e.g. union membership restrictions, restrictive covenants -- these depended for their power on (a) enforcement by the government and the courts, and (b) quasi-monopolistic positioning which could effectively interfere with the operation of market forces.

Market equilibrium would probably leave some segregated niche markets, but I don't think it's totally crazy that segregationists felt the need to establish legal structures to force business owners or home owners or employers to discriminate. There's just too much incentive to cheat to maintain a universal segregationist system without the threat of the law. Especially if you're trying to control business owners, who mostly only care about money, not about abstract moral or ethical notions like "racial purity" or whatever.

Legally mandated desegregation is just the reverse image of the legally mandated segregation that preceded it. My guess is that acknowledging the crucial role that the law and courts and lawyers played in propping up segregation so long would buy more space to argue that in this particular instance unwinding the structural distortions of so many years of unjust law required another (milder) unjust law.

When you frame it as the government wielding its terrible sword against a private party with whose opinions the ruling power happens to disagree, that automatically gets libertarian hackles up. But that's not really an accurate picture -- in most cases, it's a private party who, only a few years prior, would have had the tyrannical majesty of the law on his side, forcing his competitors to segregate too.

Would libertarians agree that this justifies the remedial law? Well, probably not. But there's a subset of libertarians that recognises that there's a sort of path dependence involved in getting to their ideal libertarian state, and the argument might at least seem less obviously like shilling for oppression.

MayBee said...

There's a inhumanity vibe to the libertarians, and it's something that's offputting to women


There's a collectivist vibe to people who think women think alike, and it's off putting to free thinkers.

paul a'barge said...

but consider the women!

Just how much consideration do you women need?

And if you don't get it, you're going to what? Not play? Take your chess pieces and go home? Withhold sex?

MayBee said...

While we worry about what happened in 1964 and what it means about libertarians, the Democrats are doing this:
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has claimed that agents do not need warrants to read people’s emails, text messages and other private electronic communications, according to internal agency documents.

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), which obtained the documents through a Freedom of Information Act request, released the information on Wednesday.

In a 2009 handbook, the IRS said the Fourth Amendment does not protect emails because Internet users “do not have a reasonable expectation of privacy in such communications.” A 2010 presentation by the IRS Office of General Counsel reiterated the policy.

Under the Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA) of 1986, government officials only need a subpoena, issued without a judge’s approval, to read emails that have been opened or that are more than 180 days old.

Via Hotair

virgil xenophon said...

"literally made me cry?" "Consider the women?" Yea Gods, Ann, what emotional pap from someone who ostensibly preports to coldly examine public policy in a "cruelly neutral," analytical way.. And you're not ashamed to admit such things? Confirming, as they do, the worst stereotypes about the irrationality of women!

Now, OTOH, if by "consider the women" you mean that women's views (irrationally emotional or otherwise) are an objective reality that must be taken into account in public policy-making and appeal for votes by a political party, why then you are on firm analytic grounds. But "literally cry?"
What an open advertisement for revoking the 19th amendment! It is to weep..

El Camino Real said...

How do you solve a problem like the 19th Amendment?

Marshal said...

Jim Crow was possible largely because it was enforced by local government. Libertarians should be able to accept a government solution to government corruption. I and most other libertarians I know do accept this.

The biggest problem with libertarians, especially those that push themselves forward, is an inability to recognize the limits of their philosophy (also true of other political theories). Libertarianism works among people who largely cooperate, but less well in other circumstances. Examples include paying for your own police (a fringe idea that should be rejected) and foreign policy (countries don't act as individuals).

But compare this to leftism which believes we should have ever increasing regulation on those who cooperate freely while making excuses for those who don't.

Libertarianism is the way to organize domestically, and we can find the right limits by moving slowly in that direction.

Inga said...

"There's a inhumanity vibe to the libertarians, and it's something that's offputting to women, generally. If the GOP wants to go there, they are going to lose the women even more than they already have."

4/11/13, 11:08 AM

True! And libertarian women really puzzle me. I've heard libertarian women express dislike of their own gender.

Mitch H. said...

Goddamn, Professor, sometimes you can sound so intolerant and needy. "Inhuman" - way to dehumanize an entire philosophy. Sometimes Boomers can sound so childish and irrational... I'm not even willing to call it a woman thing, more like a cultural issue or mis-education problem tied up with second-wave feminism, maybe.

Hagar said...

In 1964 it would have been just one year short of the centennial anniversary of Appomattox.

How long is long enough?

MayBee said...

Yeah, unlike the women who said any woman who would vote for Romney is an idiot. No dislike there!

President-Mom-Jeans said...

I'm really looking forward to the Boomer's dying off.

The white liberal's obsession with racial guilt is almost as destructive to this country as their profligate spending and burdening future generations with mountains of debt.

20 more years or so should do it. Maybe less after Obamacare crashes the medical field.

Original Mike said...

"There's a inhumanity vibe to the libertarians, and it's something that's offputting to women, generally. If the GOP wants to go there, they are going to lose the women even more than they already have."

Aren't libertarians about the most are pro-choice people you're gong to find?

MayBee said...

1964 was almost 50 years ago.

50 years before 1964, women had not yet gotten the vote in the US.
We were years away from entering WWI.

Did the election of 1964 spend a lot of time rehashing the Great War? We're a lot of women still brought to tears over the idea their Grandma couldn't vote?

dreams said...

It seems to me that Rand Paul though a libertarian isn't likely to take positions that are unacceptable to a majority of voters except possibly national defense and even there he would probably be more out of step with conservative leaders than most voters.

I think Jennifer Rubin wants to like Paul too but her concerns have more to do with our national defense and I'm with her in that regard.

BDNYC said...

Ann Althouse said...

"You cried? How ridiculous."

Canary in the coal mine.


You are a very smart person, so I assume you know the meaning of the word "literally" and used it appropriately. You cried tears.

The difference between a woman's emotions and a canary's death is that we can make sense of what kills the canary and learn lessons from it.

Saint Croix said...

This would be a good opportunity for Paul to show why he is a Republican and not a Libertarian. The absolute view that their can be no government regulation of a business is idiotic. Yes, regulation can kill economic growth and prosperity. We see that right now! But allowing businesses to racially discriminate is not only immoral, but it's also bad business. So that would be an example of a government regulation that increases productivity and wealth for our society.

Rand Paul should announce full and complete support for the Civil Rights Act, period.

Inga said...

"There's a inhumanity vibe to the libertarians, and it's something that's offputting to women, generally. If the GOP wants to go there, they are going to lose the women even more than they already have."
---------------
"Aren't libertarians about the most are pro-choice people you're gong to find?"

4/11/13, 11:34 AM
Rand Paul on abortion.

LYNNDH said...

What about signs refusing service if you are not wearing shoes, or a tie. What about business that refuse to sell their services such as baking a cake or selling flowers, to gays for their wedding? Is it a Civil Right to have the service, or to deny the service?

Original Mike said...

Inga, from your link: "My opponents call me libertarian but I'm pro-life."

IOW, Paul is not a libertarian.

phx said...

Don't be so sexist.

Don't you be so sexist.

Sam L. said...

Well, born in '63, Rand Paul could not have opposed the '64 Act. he may think it wrong now, wrongly enacted, wrongly enforced, wrongly whatever, but now we're talking history, and we all know lefties and "intellectuals" and academics hate revisionism unless it's them revisioning.

And the racism then was enforced by Democrats throughout the solid south.

Marshal said...

Original Mike said...
Inga, from your link: "My opponents call me libertarian but I'm pro-life."


Officially libertarianism does not take a position on abortion. A libertarian could conclude that abortion should be illegal at all times because it harms the baby, or he could conclude there is no harm because there is no baby. The question of when the embryo becomes a baby isn't answerable by libertarian philosophy.

bpm4532 said...

there is a difference between public and private organizations. Publicly funded organizations should have no discrimination. A private organization should be allowed to choose it's members and activities. There's a difference with a private business that is open to the public. If it wants only serve those it wants, then it must become open only to members. Some will say that tax-advantaged organizations (religions) are thus publicly funded and must bow to the whim of the public.

Tricky business.

dreams said...

"I'm really looking forward to the Boomer's dying off."

I know where you're coming from but the problem for me is that I'm just enough older than the boomers to be technically not a boomer.

Inga said...

Libertarian Platform

Any libertarian women here who care to weigh in on their stance on abortion? I haven't heard any here on Althouse that were pro choice.

MayBee said...

Are you talking about the Libertarian Pary platform, Inga? Rand Paul is not in the Libertarian party.

What do you think of the Democratic Party platform on abortion?

Synova said...

"There's a inhumanity vibe to the libertarians, and it's something that's offputting to women, generally. If the GOP wants to go there, they are going to lose the women even more than they already have."

Oh, for heaven's sake. I know more women libertarians than men, and more libertarian-leaning female pundits and writers than men.

Stop assuming we're children for pities sake. Adult women are attracted to being treated like adults.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

Hagar said...

In 1964 it would have been just one year short of the centennial anniversary of Appomattox.

How long is long enough?


How long is long enough for what?

Inga said...

As a matter of fact, I haven't heard any libertarian men who were pro choice either here on Althouse.

Original Mike said...

Thanks, Marshall.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

David said...

Ditto the libertarians on public accommodations laws. Their doctrine had not produced just treatment of blacks for a 100 years. I think 100 years of evidence was enough to override the doctrine.

That would be fine, if libertarian doctrine had been tried for 100 years. However, it had not. Not for 100, not for 10, not for 1, not even for a minute.

I'm not saying libertarian doctrine would have ended private discrimination, or reduced it quickly enough. But don't pretend it was tried and found wanting.

TosaGuy said...

Baby Boomers need to cease taking any credit for the Civil Rights Movement, when it started in the 1950s they were in at best elementary school. They were in high school in 1964 and barely in college in the late 1960s. All of the heavy lifting, whether that be legislation, marches, sit-ins or rallies were done by the generation before them.

They sat there and watched.

TosaGuy said...

Baby Boomers need to cease taking any credit for the Civil Rights Movement, when it started in the 1950s they were in at best elementary school. They were in high school in 1964 and barely in college in the late 1960s. All of the heavy lifting, whether that be legislation, marches, sit-ins or rallies were done by the generation before them.

They sat there and watched.

Ann Althouse said...

The war on women is real in the sense that something real is happening under that label, and so many of you GOP people are determined to lose.

Here's another label: The Stupid Party.

Stop being The Stupid Party!

This idea, expressed multiple times above, that politics should be about reason and not emotion, spoken by people who imagine themselves to be exemplars of reason, is one of the least reasonable ideas around.

It's utterly stupid!

Quit lolling around flattering yourself and start living in the real word. Human mental processes occur within the anatomical structures of nervous system. We are not computers, and that's a good thing.

Original Mike said...

"As a matter of fact, I haven't heard any libertarian men who were pro choice either here on Althouse."

I think of myself as "libertarian", (I have no idea what the official Libertarian Platform is) and as a result am pro-choice until you get to the issue of late term abortions.

Bender said...

Exactly right. Trying to reason with those who have thrown reason away is folly.

But that does not relieve one of the obligation to still exercise reason and give voice to it.

Mousebert said...

Rand Paul was about one year old when the Civil Rights Act was passed. How informed could he be about it?

It seems the left is purposely mixing up Ron Paul with Rand Paul, then turns around when the question is asked, saying why is he still talking about it unless he has something to hide.

Bender said...

And it is refreshing when someone admits that they are, in fact, completely unreasonable.

Henry said...

I'm sorry, but there is something repulsive about judging the Civil Rights Act as a legal abstraction. The context of civil rights laws is one of human suffering. Segregation was an enormous crime against the dignity and full participation as citizens of black people. People suffered and died to make it possible for Congress to even bring such a law to a vote.

I'm not saying a person can't criticize the law, or examine it analytically. But to examine it only as an abstraction, devoid of human concern, is perverse.

Consider an analogy. A pathological murderer gets off a minor legal technicality. Rand Paul sounds like that guy's lawyer.

Jay said...

This idea, expressed multiple times above, that politics should be about reason and not emotion, spoken by people who imagine themselves to be exemplars of reason, is one of the least reasonable ideas around.

It's utterly stupid


Yes, "stupid" to a highly emotional woman.

Thanks for the sage advice.

Really, that was like super-duper spectacular.

Iconochasm said...

I'm a male libertarian, Inga. I'm solidly pro-choice, though I do understand that the critical issue is the definition of personhood. The definition I think makes the most sense excludes a fetus; that is not the case for many other, quite sincere and decent people.

Bender said...

It is not about reason. It is not about right and wrong. It is not about truth and error.

It is all about power.

It really is hard to rid oneself of that deeply rooted leftism. Even when one can see from experience the catastrophic failures of leftism put into practice, it is still clinged to.

MayBee said...

Althouse- I think you need to stop flattering yourself that the way you see things, and interpret politics, is "the real world"

For all the people who vote based on emotion, there are people who are very logical in their voting decisions.
The people here who are disagreeing with you are doing so because that's how they actually think. You want to change them, under the guise that they aren't thinking right, aka in a real way.

Hyphenated American said...

"But allowing businesses to racially discriminate is not only immoral, but it's also bad business. So that would be an example of a government regulation that increases productivity and wealth for our society. "

1. It's immoral to claim the power to force people at gun point to work for them. If I don't want to associate with you - what right do you have to force me to?
2. The anti-discrimination laws led directly to bussing, labor laws and affirmative action. I don't think anyone could show how that increased the wealth of the nation.
3. Don't forget that the entire "diversity" business - lawyers, administrators, and the like grew out of the idea that government has a right to decide who you hire, fire and deal with. Don't tell me it made America free and more prosperous.

Inga said...

Ichonochasm, so when will Libertarians get the strength of their convictions in hand and define personhood?

President-Mom-Jeans said...

Ann Althouse said...
"The war on women is real in the sense that something real is happening under that label, and so many of you GOP people are determined to lose."

Please Obama voter, tell us more how if Republicans just were Democrats everything would be just peachy. "Real" does not mean what some racist towards Ben Carlson aging feminist has going on in her unreasonable little head.



Go cry about it

Jay said...

This idea, expressed multiple times above, that politics should be about reason and not emotion, spoken by people who imagine themselves to be exemplars of reason, is one of the least reasonable ideas around.

It's utterly stupid!


Alternatively,

The party you've spend most of your life voting for - the Democrats - is the emotional one, and the other one gets to be the reasonable one thereby offering a stark contrast.

Hyphenated American said...

"There's a inhumanity vibe to the libertarians, and it's something that's offputting to women, generally. If the GOP wants to go there, they are going to lose the women even more than they already have. "

Translation: math is hard and I am just a girl. Giggle, giggle, giggle.

The most inhuman thing is to give up logic and reason and lower yourself to a level of an emotional and illogical creature. Are we humans or animals?

MayBee said...

The war on women is real in the sense that something real is happening under that label, and so many of you GOP people are determined to lose._____________

If all it takes to make something "real" is for the Political Opposition to come up with a name for people who - very reasonably- oppose their policies, then every political accusation is real.
And when it is, as this is, based on a very Democrat idea, then he's, the GOP is going to "lose" that.

Such are the word games politicians play. This is how being against Affirmative action becomes a racist position, too embarrassing for high school students to write about.

This is how TEA Party people became racist. They are racist in the sense that many people have given them that label, and believe it. They will lose their low-tax, anti-Obamacare argument because they are determined to be racist about it.

Never mind so many of their critiques were right. They were racist. Their ideas are toxic.

Hyphenated American said...

"This idea, expressed multiple times above, that politics should be about reason and not emotion, spoken by people who imagine themselves to be exemplars of reason, is one of the least reasonable ideas around."

Ann, you are an emotional wreck, and you detest people who are trying to treat you as a person of reason and logic. Your lack of critical thinking already pushed you to vote for Obama, and now you are raging against one of the fundamental human rights - the freedom of association. Don't you see that our civilization is on the brink of bankruptcy because of people who refuse to think, and prefer to rely on emotions and primitive instincts?

Iconochasm said...

Inga, that's an asinine challenge. Most libertarians with a strong opinion on the topic already know which definition they prefer, and for what reasons. It's not as though, even if everyone calling themselves a libertarian were to agree, that would suddenly become the acknowledged standard. When will the Democrats do it? Aren't they still relying on facially-absurd, tortured ephemera so as to avoid that whole sticky mess?

It's not a matter of getting one particular party or movement on board with a single understanding of the definition. Particularly when talking about movements that are umbrellas covering a fairly wide variety of ways to get to generally similar conclusions, like libertarians. It's a matter of getting that critical issue to be the one under discussion.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

Inga said...

Ichonochasm, so when will Libertarians get the strength of their convictions in hand and define personhood?

That says so much about your world view. Do all liberterians need to agree on a favorite color too?

Inga said...

Libertarians appear to be purposefully vague on their abortion stance. Fence sitting. Not admirable.

Revenant said...

I got a close-up view of some libertarians displaying an attitude about private race discrimination that literally made me cry:

I remember. I thought you were being silly then, and I still think it now. :)

MayBee said...

Inga- when will Democrats get the courage of their convictions and define precisely at what stage an abortion should become illegal?

Seeing Red said...

I'm supposed to bow down to chits like the SWUGS that feminism created?

No thank you.

Seeing Red said...

If only Uncle Joe knew that I was being put to death!


That's how they felt, if they saw the paper with his signature on it, it would have been a forgery! He Cares So MUCH! FORWARD!

Jay said...

an attitude about private race discrimination that literally made me cry:

Well, Michelle Obama started blubbering and crying yesterday too.

You two are kindred spirits!

GIRRRRLLLLLLLLLLLL Power!

Original Mike said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
President-Mom-Jeans said...

"an attitude about private race discrimination that literally made me cry"

Are you sure that wasn't just the menopause acting up?

Iconochasm said...

Inga, you're being a tool.

Jay said...

Nothing says strong and independent like bawling.

Don't worry, daddy government (especially Billy Jeff!) will always be there to give you a hug.

Carol said...

Libertarians used to be all about legal pot, porn and prostitution. Balls to the wall immigration and abortion on demand. Liberty, baby!

So it's kind of funny to see so many conservatives and Republicans casting their lot with them. They can liberalize all they want, teh kidz still won't love them.

Original Mike said...

"Libertarians appear to be purposefully vague on their abortion stance. Fence sitting. Not admirable."

Huh? What part of "other people's business" are you unclear on?

Nonapod said...

spoken by people who imagine themselves to be exemplars of reason, is one of the least reasonable ideas around.

It's utterly stupid!

Quit lolling around flattering yourself and start living in the real word. Human mental processes occur within the anatomical structures of nervous system. We are not computers, and that's a good thing.


I recognize that humans are emotional creatures. But human beings are also capable of reason. I believe that we should strive to approach every issue in as rational and results oriented way as possible, not because I am (or believe myself to be) unemotional or inhuman or uncaring, but precisely because I am emotional and a do care about what happens to us as a species. I believe we should do what works, what has proven to work in the past, what will yield the best possible results. This requires the exercise of reason,

I don't advocate divorcing all emotion from policy decisions, but I do advocate recognizing emotional responses and factoring that into decision making processes.

Jay said...

Oh and these words:

an attitude about private race discrimination that literally made me cry reveal so, so much about modern America.

Specifically how we got a $3.2 trillion dollar federal Leviathan that can't accomplish assest inventory, let alone tacking any serious problems.

What a legacy you spoiled white kids leave the rest of us, huh?

Inga said...

I have stated many times here on Althouse that abortions should be limited to the first trimester, or 18 weeks at he latest. Democrats as a party are fence sitting on this issue also, also not admirable. Lefties also come in all shapes and sizes.

A good lesson for today.

Inga said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Marshal said...

"Libertarians appear to be purposefully vague on their abortion stance. Fence sitting. Not admirable."

So libertarians are criticized as extremists when applying their philosphy too far, and criticized for fence sitting when they recognize limits. It all makes sense if your only purpose is to criticize.

dreams said...

"The war on women is real in the sense that something real is happening under that label, and so many of you GOP people are determined to lose."

Is that a war on women just a war on single women or all women?

Married women apparently don't feel like they're under attack from the Republicans gauging by their voting pattern. Married women vote overwhelmingly for Republicans so I guess the real war on women as perceived by women is the threat that big government surrogate daddy/husband won't take care of them, them as in single women, single mothers.

Inga said...

Original Mike, so libertarians would not be in favor of the new heartbeat law in North Dakota? Isn't this big government interfering in a woman's choice? What if every single state would adopt such a law, would libertarians be in favor?

Ignorance is Bliss said...

...but consider the women!

So, consider a man, then take away reason and accountability.

AprilApple said...

Philadelphia abortion clinic horror: We’ve forgotten what belongs on Page One. “Infant beheadings. Severed baby feet in jars. A child screaming after it was delivered alive during an abortion procedure. Haven’t heard about these sickening accusations? It’s not your fault. Since the murder trial of Pennsylvania abortion doctor Kermit Gosnell began March 18, there has been precious little coverage of the case that should be on every news show and front page. The revolting revelations of Gosnell’s former staff, who have been testifying to what they witnessed and did during late-term abortions, should shock anyone with a heart. . . . ‘Chaos’ isn’t really the story here. Butchering babies that were already born and were older than the state’s 24-week limit for abortions is the story.”

What say you democrats?
What say you pro-democrat media?

President-Mom-Jeans said...

"Lefties also come in all shapes and sizes."

Judging from this blog, it seems they are mostly old, pasty white, and chubby.

Maybe thats just Wisconsin lefties.

MayBee said...

I didn't ask you about you, Inga. I asked you about Democrats. Just as you are asking aboutthe Llibertarians.

You don't speak for Democrats. You can see that you are separate from your group, yet you seek (often, on various issues) to make a group of libertarians or republicans.

dreams said...

"Libertarians appear to be purposefully vague on their abortion stance. Fence sitting. Not admirable."

I thought libertarians were all about live and let live. Fence sitting, so you want them to tell you what to do?

Seeing Red said...

Once they actually come up with the filter that captures all these synthetic hormones in our water, it's gonna get really interesting.

I wonder if men will actually become men again?

While this country becomes female, the rest of the world is male.

This will not end well.

Original Mike said...

Inga, I went to your link and this is what it says on abortion:

"Recognizing that abortion is a sensitive issue and that people can hold good-faith views on all sides, we believe that government should be kept out of the matter, leaving the question to each person for their conscientious consideration."

Please explain how this is "fence sitting."

Amartel said...

"something real is happening under that label"

Care to elaborate?
It is a label, one stamped on your forehead by the DNC: Emotional Trainwreck, Easily Intimidated.

Does that make you angry? Sad? Anything? I'm no computer. That would piss me off.

You exhort the Republicans to stop being The Stupid Party. Agree! But don't get all upset when Republicans (conservatives, libertarian) exhort you to stop being part of the Party of the Stupid.

Here's what I see happening under that label: Women are being told that it's okay, even preferable, to think emotionally rather than analytically and critically. Women are being coopted and used as political props, cartoon figures straight out of the 1950s to support expansive government power and control. Women's disempowerment. And it's voluntary. Yay team.

MayBee said...

So when, Inga, will the Democrats have the courage of their convictions and define the moment when ablation should be illegals.

Seeing Red said...

Who knew Pennsylvania had a 24-week limit!

How cruel is that?

It's positively European.

Rabel said...

Sometimes when I sacrifice my bedrock constitutional principles because I believe that the ends justify the means, I feel like crying too.

traditionalguy said...

There may indeed still be a Libertarian liberty to hate less than pure white people in your mind that does remain safely beyond a 14th Amendment remedy, but the GOP lead Armies of the Republic ended forever the debate about who had the power under the Constitution to stop it from being demonstrated in public venues.

That lack of power practically ended in early September, 1864, but Congress waited another 100 years before using it's power.

Bender said...

What do they say?

They say, "You hate women, don't you April?"

Iconochasm said...

On the topic of emotions, emotions aren't knowledge. A strongly negative emotional response to something doesn't tell you something new, it's at best a tip to stop and examine why an issue or argument causes you such distress. The Professor literally cried upon learning that libertarians would allow discrimination between private actors. Would the Professor literally cry upon learning that libertarians would allow discriminatory speech? The two situations are directly analogous to a libertarian (the right to free speech permits wrong speech, the right to freedom of association permits deciding who to associate with stupidly/wrongly). Perhaps the extreme emotional response was her brain's way of pointing out it's extreme cognitive dissonance.

But all that's just speculation, as she hasn't really explained her problem with freedom of association. Probably for the best. That argument never turns out well for the side she's taking.

Original Mike said...

"Original Mike, so libertarians would not be in favor of the new heartbeat law in North Dakota? Isn't this big government interfering in a woman's choice? What if every single state would adopt such a law, would libertarians be in favor?'

I don't know what the Libertarian Party has or will say on this issue (although their platform seems to be pretty clear they would oppose it). I do not support this law because don't think it's the place of government to get involved.

Inga said...

"Recognizing that abortion is a sensitive issue and that people can hold good-faith views on all sides, we believe that government should be kept out of the matter, leaving the question to each person for their conscientious consideration."

Please explain how this is "fence sitting."

4/11/13, 12:39 PM
What do libertarians think about the North Dakota heartbeat laws? Are they OK with the government of North Dakota interfering with a woman's choice, made legal nder Roe v. Wade? How is this government staying OUT of it?

Sofa King said...

Original Mike, so libertarians would not be in favor of the new heartbeat law in North Dakota? Isn't this big government interfering in a woman's choice? What if every single state would adopt such a law, would libertarians be in favor?


Speaking purely on my opinion of libertarianism, yes, yes, and no. However, libertarians would also strenuously object to the use of confiscated wealth to facilitate abortions. And I also suspect that many libertarians would believe that, whatever their policy preferences, Roe v. Wade was a bad precedent.

Inga said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sigivald said...

I got a close-up view of some libertarians displaying an attitude about private race discrimination that literally made me cry

Sounds like a personal problem, not a basis for policy decisions.

(What Chip S. said - Jim Crow was the State enforcing discrimination.

Why did the State feel that laws were necessary to do that?

Because free enterprise wasn't doing it by itself, and was in fact tending in the other direction.

The market only cares what color your money is, not your skin.)

Inga said...

Thank you OM, I appreciate the clarity and honesty.

Bender said...

It's not government's place to get involved in the protection of human life.

MayBee said...

I would suspect many libertarians would believe that the people of North Dakota can have the law they want, because they soften are strong supporters of Federalism.
I also suspect that, just like Democrats, different people would have different opinions.

How did you get on this tangent?

Saint Croix said...

Inga, a person is a live human being.

That is, of course, the dictionary definition of the word.

But what's really nice about that definition is that it's nice and broad. Attempts to narrow the definition and exclude some live human beings have the unfortunate effect of lumping the excluders with Nazis and slave-owners, who were rather notorious for kicking some live human beings out of the class of humanity.

Original Mike said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ignorance is Bliss said...

Inga-

Discussing the Libertarian Party is a lot like discussing a herd of cats.

Inga said...

Maybee, you mean abortion, right? Ablation is a great medical procedure, should not be illegal, evah!

Original Mike said...

What puzzles me, Inga, is why you think libertarians would support the North Dakota law.

Actually, I'm not puzzled at all. You see two sides to an issue; a liberal side and an evil side.

Inga said...

"Discussing the Libertarian Party is a lot like discussing a herd of cats."

4/11/13, 12:48 PM

YUP!

Nonapod said...

Inga said...
What do libertarians think about the North Dakota heartbeat laws? Are they OK with the government of North Dakota interfering with a woman's choice, made legal nder Roe v. Wade? How is this government staying OUT of it?


You do realize that libertarians will have differing opinions on all these things and that no one libertarian can speak for all of them right? Just like liberals and/or democrats may have differing opinions? You do realize that it's possible to agree on certain things and disagree on others? Right?

MayBee said...

Yes, I mean abortion. You going to answer?

MayBee said...

Thanks, Nonapod. That's what I've been trying to say.

Inga said...

OM, because not one libertarian commenter here stated they were against it when it was passed and discussed in a thread a couple of weeks ago.

And I guarantee that you may be one of only a handful that has stated your disagreement with the heartbeat law here.

Inga said...

Maybee, I hope they would do it NOW.

MayBee said...

When will they?

Bender said...

I know that reason is verboten now, but exactly what is the objection to a law recognizing that a human being with a heartbeat is alive and cannot be killed with impunity?

jr565 said...

What about colleges that cater to black people or women? Or gyms that cater to women like Lucille Roberts?

Original Mike said...

"OM, because not one libertarian commenter here stated they were against it when it was passed and discussed in a thread a couple of weeks ago."

How many libertarian commenters are there here? I bet, not many. For myself, I only read a few of the comment threads, so I didn't see the thread you're referring to.

Skyler said...

Ann Althouse said...

"Quit lolling around flattering yourself and start living in the real word. Human mental processes occur within the anatomical structures of nervous system. We are not computers, and that's a good thing."

It's a good thing you're not stupid, Ann.

Just because you're not stupid and also not a computer doesn't mean that we should debase ourselves to be emotional basket cases. This is entirely unlike you.

It is not the purpose of our government to end discrimination. We have a right to discriminate. It is only in certain public arenas that we are recently forbidden to use our own judgments about people, but no law can force me to form a partnership with someone I don't choose to be a partner with. Isn't that discrimination?

Churches need not hire clergymen that refuse to worship their god.

So where did you get this cockamamey idea that it is the government's role to "end discrimination?"

I think you should get your non-stupid non-lolling, non-self-flattering, emotional bundle under control. You're not accurately reflecting the laws of our Constitution, You-a-Law-Professor, and you should know better than to say that our government is designed to end discrimination.

It's certainly true that the laws should protect everyone equally. But that is not the same as requiring all human interactions to be emotionless and devoid of personal preference.

Inga said...

"OM, because not one libertarian commenter here stated they were against it when it was passed and discussed in a thread a couple of weeks ago."
-----------------------
"How many libertarian commenters are there here? I bet, not many. For myself, I only read a few of the comment threads, so I didn't see the thread you're referring to."

4/11/13, 12:59 PM

OM, I bet if Althouse did a survey, many here would self identify as libertarian.

Iconochasm said...

Inga, I might be able to help you out a bit: your displayed lack of coherency, understanding and good faith disinclines me to go read up on an issue to explain the range of libertarian responses to a block of wood. On the presumption that it's a limitation on abortion, it's going to come right back to that "personhood" issue, as everything related to abortion always does. If you understood the sides to that debate, you wouldn't have to ask the question, and you might not come off as such an ignoramus to those who disagree with you, besides.

jr565 said...

Lucille Roberts has gyms that only allow women to work out there. How is that different than a business that only allows men? or only allows whites?

Last I heard Lucille Roberts could so discriminate. Is it then, ONLY discriminating based on race that offends Ann, and not discriminating based on sex?

Or does she have a problem with Lucille Roberts gyms too.

Skyler said...

Henry said...

"People suffered and died to make it possible for Congress to even bring such a law to a vote."

People suffered and died to keep Saddam Hussein in power too.

edutcher said...

This was Goldwater's big objection - the government ordering people to serve or associate with anyone whether they want to or not.

We can argue the rights and wrongs of it, but go up to Harlem and see how happy black store owners are to serve white people.

Ann Althouse said...

There's a inhumanity vibe to the libertarians, and it's something that's offputting to women, generally. If the GOP wants to go there, they are going to lose the women even more than they already have.

For God's sake, Ann, what do you want, a man with principle (who will fight for your life, if necessary BTW) or some wuss who will knuckle under to you because some of his beliefs are offputting?

Inga said...

True! And libertarian women really puzzle me. I've heard libertarian women express dislike of their own gender

We can all understand why, can't we?javascript:void(0)

PS Rand Paul was 1 year old in '64.

Saint Croix said...

"Recognizing that abortion is a sensitive issue and that people can hold good-faith views on all sides, we believe that government should be kept out of the matter, leaving the question to each person for their conscientious consideration."

That's not fence-sitting. It's rather like saying it's up to each and every slave-owner to decide if they are going to own people.

And it's rather dishonest to assume property status for a baby without any discussion.

Weird how the libertarian party and the feminist movement share the same "cold inner core."

And a shout out to Inga for making that connection.

Nonapod said...

From the responses I've read around here over the years I'm fairly certain that a significant portion of the regular Althouse commentariat are libertarian, perhaps as high as 25%.

X said...

Canary in the coal mine.

it's not for nothing they're known as the vapors.

Bob Ellison said...

Inga is correct: the Althouse commentariat skews largely libertarian. The Professor skews that way ordinarily, of course, and she tends to skewer controlling philosophies.

But libertarians are always a sad minority, like socialists. They think they have the right ideas, but they can't build a good clubhouse, and they can't get into a better clubhouse.

Original Mike said...

"And it's rather dishonest to assume property status for a baby without any discussion."

No discussion? Are you kidding? We've had this discussion ad nauseum.

jr565 said...


There's a inhumanity vibe to the pro choices like Ann, and it's something that's offputting to many men, generally.

X said...

everyone is libertarian about what they want to do. the one's who extend the courtesy to others are principled libertarians.

Original Mike said...

On the North Dakota law, if you support it and consider yourself libertarian, I think you need to reassess your political leanings.

MayBee said...

How many people agree with everything some larger group believes in?

Not many.

HT said...

"They knew enough to be suspicious of his central argument: that Abraham Lincoln’s Republican Party is the same Republican Party that now dominates the South."

--Washington Post, today.

Krumhorn said...

There's a inhumanity vibe to the libertarians, and it's something that's offputting to women, generally. If the GOP wants to go there, they are going to lose the women even more than they already have.

Maybe there's a way to do it and Paul (and Cruz) can figure it out, but consider the women!


It's infuriating, but Ann is a window into the problem we have today. It's largely irrelevant whether or not a certain ideological posture is the "best" long term approach to governance. The quality of any policy argument can only be measured by whether it can win adherents in a contest with other policy arguments.

To make matters worse, the quality of the argument may have less to do with the argument itself, than who is making it.

I think that Ann routinely demonstrates that she can be sold on an idea, and that she is a proxy for others who feel as she does. However, regardless of the merit of her objections, the sale isn't being made.

And isn't the the whole point?

To be perfectly blunt, I think that we are having a difficult time finding the energy to dig down and find the way to sell anyone in a fashion that permits the buyer to sell themselves. That is how a sale gets made. They libruls have every advantage.....except the advantage of being right. The media wind is perennially at their backs. They are utterly deceitful, manipulative and craven. And it's working

I see Ann's comments such as the "canary" observation and I'm reminded of a meeting I attended where the chairman of a major studio was trying to persuade the agent of a very successful and talented writer to make a deal with the studio. The body language was compelling. The agent slouched in his chair with a look that said nothing so clearly as "c'mon, blow me".

Ignorance is Bliss said...

Original Mike said...

On the North Dakota law, if you support it and consider yourself libertarian, I think you need to reassess your political leanings.

Why? Anti-abortion is perfectly consistent with libertarian principles if you believe that life starts at conception.

Or do you believe that anyone who disagrees with a single plank in the party platform should reassess their political leanings?

Revenant said...

Libertarians appear to be purposefully vague on their abortion stance. Fence sitting. Not admirable

I've never met a libertarian who was "vague" in his position on abortion. Can you give an example of one?

It is certainly true that *libertarianism* has no set position on abortion, but that is simply because there is no broad agreement on the moral status of unborn children. Most of us lean towards the legal abortion side simply because our default position, in cases where it isn't clear if the government should get involved, is "no, it shouldn't".

Saint Croix said...

Original Mike, yes, you're right, we do discuss abortion all the time! I was actually speaking about the Libertarian party platform.

Nathan Alexander said...

You know what really attracts the women vote, though?

Telling women you will support their right to choose and then raping and assaulting women whenever the opportunity presents itself.

Feminist women really love it women are assaulted and raped, as long is it is by "liberal" men with power.

But conservative men with power who don't rape or assault or harass women? That drives away the female vote in droves, for some reason.

It's almost like Fen's Law fully applies in every single possible circumstance.

Nathan Alexander said...

Inga, why did you select an avatar that celebrates sexual assault?

Do you hate your sex?

damikesc said...

So, the Dems who voted for the AUMF against Iraq WERE voting for war with Iraq.

Thank you, Mother Jones.

I've heard libertarian women express dislike of their own gender.

If my own gender was so mind-numbingly flighty that such blatant idiocy can sway their votes --- I'd dislike them too.

Henry said...

Skyler wrote: People suffered and died to keep Saddam Hussein in power too.

And that non sequitur aids your position how?

Saint Croix said...

What's beautiful about equal protection is that it helps us reason through these issues.

We define human death for ourselves. We ought to apply those rules to the unborn, too.

In other words, it violates equal protection for South Carolina to find a right to do an abortion that would also be a homicide under state law.

Thus people (including libertarians) could fight about what is the relevant criteria. But what equal protection ensures is that the rules are fair, because they apply to everybody.

Original Mike said...

"Anti-abortion is perfectly consistent with libertarian principles if you believe that life starts at conception."

Maybe, but I'm having a hard time imagining how you can be "religious" and libertarian. And maybe this is wrong, but the "life starts at conception" seems to be a religious principle.

"Or do you believe that anyone who disagrees with a single plank in the party platform should reassess their political leanings?"

No. It's impossible for anyone to agree with everything in a party platform. But abortion is a big deal, and it's hard to imagine believing as a core principle that government should not interfere in people's private affairs and also supporting strict abortion restrictions.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

Original Mike said...

Maybe, but I'm having a hard time imagining how you can be "religious" and libertarian.

It's uncommon, but I don't see why it's hard to imagine.

And maybe this is wrong, but the "life starts at conception" seems to be a religious principle.

In many cases it is a religious principle, but it is not exclusively so.

it's hard to imagine believing as a core principle that government should not interfere in people's private affairs and also supporting strict abortion restrictions.

It's pretty easy to imagine once you accept that people really believe abortion involves more than one person.

edutcher said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
garage mahal said...

24 types of libertarians.

Nonapod said...

Original Mike said...
Maybe, but I'm having a hard time imagining how you can be "religious" and libertarian


Why exactly? Is there something about libertarianism that is exclusionary to a belief in god?

Revenant said...

Maybe, but I'm having a hard time imagining how you can be "religious" and libertarian.

I'm an atheist libertarian, but I've met plenty of religious libertarians. What's so strange about it?

The key thing people tend to forget is that libertarianism focuses on what it is right for the government to do. Christianity (for example) focuses on what it is right for you, the individual to do. There isn't a single place in the New Testament where Jesus says anything that could be interpreted as "the government needs to do something to stop these sinners from sinning".

Indeed, the story of Jesus is very much the story of a man who did what he thought was the right thing to matter *what* the government thought, and who was then imprisoned and murdered by the government for having done so. There's a lot in that story that a libertarian can identify with. :)

And maybe this is wrong, but the "life starts at conception" seems to be a religious principle

That human life starts at conception is a medical fact; the fertilized egg is alive and genetically human. The real question is when human beings acquire human rights. THAT question can only be answered via religious or philosophical means, which is why there is so much disagreement.

MayBee said...

I'm pro choice, but I know anyone who believes in the existence of, or uses the term "war on women" seriously, is a member of the stupid party.

Original Mike said...

Wow, 24 straw men. Cool.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

There's a inhumanity vibe to the libertarians, and it's something that's offputting to women, generally. If the GOP wants to go there, they are going to lose the women even more than they already have.

???

That's an obnoxious argument, relying as it does on a stereotype of women being too emotionally sensitive to be able to understand and accept logical arguments. And more, treating it as something to be appeased and catered to.


As a woman and a libertarian leaning conservative, I find that rational insulting and obnoxious. Women are such frail emotionally charged creatures that we can't logically look at arguments.

BTW: I agree with Paul about the free market being able to take care, eventually, of the issues. The government taking away property rights and the right of association, while laudable to try to stop the immoral discrimination of blacks, has just created more problems. More government overreach and the erosion of ALL of our rights.

SSM is a prime example of this. If you have a catering company and do NOT wish to be forced to do business with a gay couple catering for their marriage, because you have religious objections. Too bad... you are FORCED to do this whether you want or not.

If you are a business that wants to allow smokers into your property ....Tough titty. You have to ban or discriminate against some people.

If you are a Boy Scout troop and don't want to have homosexual men sleeping in tents with your little boys. Too bad. You have to associate.

The who picking and choosing by the government as to who you must or must not do business with who you MUST and must NOT associate with.

Libertarians believe that these decisions belong to each individual and not to the government.

If that makes you cry.....too bad.

Nathan Alexander said...

And maybe this is wrong, but the "life starts at conception" seems to be a religious principle.

Yes, that was wrong.

"Life starts at conception" is science.

At the moment of conception, you have a 100% unique combination of genetic material, a separate life of its own.

That's indisputable science.

"Personhood starts at conception" is more of a religious and/or unprovable principle.

Original Mike said...

I have no interest in arguing semantics. About this:

"The real question is when human beings acquire human rights. THAT question can only be answered via religious or philosophical means, which is why there is so much disagreement."

I agree.

Iconochasm said...

OM: There's actually a very, very small minority of libertarians who believe that the laws of men are invalid, idolatrous attempts to supplant the law of God.

While "life starts at conception" is nearly ubiquitously associated with religion, it's really just the philosophical position that a "person" is a "living human being". It'll probably take contact with aliens or the first dolphin novelist to finally kill that position.

Saint Croix said...

Big Mike, I grant you that decapitation and dismemberment are "liberties," just not very nice ones.

I would also suggest that the most important liberty for a free people is the right to determine our own society's laws.

Revenant said...

BTW: I agree with Paul about the free market being able to take care, eventually, of the issues.

Interestingly, there were black civil rights leaders who agreed with him about that, too. Racial segregation and discrimination in the South weren't just tolerated by the government -- they were *required* by the government.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

Full disclosure:

I'm an atheist, libertarian-leaning conservative.

I think it is absurd to claim that live begins at conception. The only thing more absurd than that is claiming that there is some other point at which life begins. And yet, I'm pretty sure that life begins.

Nonapod said...

You can use science to make different arguments about when a fetus achieve personhood. For example, you can argue that a fetus becomes a person when higher brain activity begins (which is something like 6 to 8 weeks I believe)?

Patrick J. Shea said...

I'm really trying to figure out the "stupid party" comments, Anne. Are you 1) recommending that the GOP improve their game by becoming more manipulative with respect to voters' emotions or 2) recommending that the GOP give over to interest group politics by encouraging the kind of rent-seeking and celebration of victimhood that has become our cultural norm. During the last Bush administration, Republicans had a high degree of political success with the former (and were widely castigated for being so cynical), but I'm afraid the Republicans are never going to be able to out pander and out promise the Democrats -- W's presidency bears that out, too.

In either event, what it sounds like to me is that you want the Republicans to become Bill Clinton. David Cameron appears to be trying this trick and tearing his party apart in the process. The next election will not be a happy time for the Tories.

Inga said...

If human life begins at conception, what about all those fertizled eggs in the deep freeze? Should they have personhood bestowed upon them?

Saint Croix said...

And I've made this point before, but it's worth repeating. Conception is the biological start of our body's existence. But the life or death question is resolved by statute.

Bender said...

As a woman and a libertarian leaning conservative, I find that rational insulting and obnoxious.

Sorry DBQ, but Althouse has already spoken for you. She did not qualify her remarks with "offputting to some women" or "offputting to liberal women," she simply said "offputting to women" period, presuming to speak for all women.

What you think does not matter. In fact, women are not allowed to have their own opinions on things. Someone else is here to do that for you.

Original Mike said...

"I think it is absurd to claim that live begins at conception. The only thing more absurd than that is claiming that there is some other point at which life begins."

It's never been clear to me why life begins at conception. Aren't germ cells alive? (Yeah, I know I said I didn't want to argue semantics. Couldn't resist.)

Bender said...

Should they have personhood bestowed upon them?

No, it is not for us to "bestow" personhood on anyone. One is a person or not by virute of the nature of the entity and, in the case of the species homo sapiens, an individual living human being is a "person" by virtue of being individual, alive, and human.

hombre said...

"Paul needs to tell the truth."

About what? Was Paul in a position to oppose passage of the act? Was he even born?

It looks like the truth is that he "likes " the Act, "abhors racism" and is uncomfortable with the federal gov't telling people how to behave in certain instances involving private discrimination. So?

Not everyone is comfortable with the liberal credo that "the ends justify the means" as long as the liberals in question think the "ends" are "good." The logical extension of the credo rationalizes Presidential lying, election fraud, etc., since Dems in power is "good."

That's worth weeping about.

Bender said...

Are germ cells alive?

Yes. What's your point?

Dust Bunny Queen said...

True! And libertarian women really puzzle me. I've heard libertarian women express dislike of their own gender.

Only the stupid, emotional, weepy one.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

Inga said...

Should they have personhood bestowed upon them?

Why would we need to bestow on them something they already possess?

Inga said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
edutcher said...

Inga said...

If human life begins at conception, what about all those fertizled eggs in the deep freeze? Should they have personhood bestowed upon them?

Just the kind of sophistry with which the She Devil of the SS, who is sooo opposed to abortion, wishes to bog down the discussion.

Inga said...

What should be done with these fertilized eggs in the deep freeze, when they are discarded, or get freezer burn? A funeral? A Social Security number?

Original Mike said...

My point was conception is another arbitrary point along the organism's world line.

Bender said...

Remember what I said about the folly of arguing with those who have thrown reason away (and then said they have no interest in it)? The Supreme Court already knows the truth -- they've been told it by one of their own -- but they do not care.

However one answers the metaphysical or theological question whether the fetus is a "human being" or the legal question whether it is a "person" as that term is used in the Constitution, one must at least recognize, first, that the fetus is an entity that bears in its cells all the genetic information that characterizes a member of the species homo sapiens and distinguishes an individual member of that species from all others, and second, that there is no nonarbitrary line separating a fetus from a child or, indeed, an adult human being.
--Justice White, Thornburgh v. American College of Obstetricians & Gynecologists (1986)

chickelit said...

Just the kind of sophistry with which the She Devil of the SS, who is sooo opposed to abortion, wishes to bog down the discussion.

Inga's opposed to abortion? She sure doesn't give off that vibe.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

What should be done with these fertilized eggs in the deep freeze, when they are discarded, or get freezer burn? A funeral? A Social Security number?

A funeral seems excessive to me, but that would certainly be up to the family.

As far as the SSN goes, not all of us believe that life begins at enrollment in government programs.

Inga said...

No Iggy, but if the fertilized egg is fully human and an American, should it not have a Social Security number? Be included in a Census maybe?

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Any libertarian women here who care to weigh in on their stance on abortion? I haven't heard any here on Althouse that were pro choice

Then you haven't been listening. But what else is new?

I have stated....often.....that while I personally object to abortion, I am not going to try to stop you from murdering your own children. I WILL try to stop you from making me and others PAY for your actions through subsidies to things like Planned Parenthood and making us pay for the health insurance that will pay for your murdering of your children.

It is your CHOICE and I don't feel that it is a good choice and really wish that it didn't exist at all except in very rare cases and ONLY in the earliest stages before there is viability. (That is pretty nebulous too since viability is being obtained at ever earlier times.) After a certain point in time, I think that abortion is out and out murder.

However, as a libertarian I should not have the power to stop you and YOU shouldn't have the power to make me help you do it.

I feel the same about drugs. Don't use them, but it is your choice. If you want to kill yourself...ok. If you are committing crimes to get your drugs or killing someone else with your drugs, that is different. But you can do whatever you want with your own body.

So now you can say you have heard an opinion. Try not to forget it the next time you derail a thread into an endless cesspool of abortion discussion.

hombre said...

Iconoclasm wrote: "While "life starts at conception" is nearly ubiquitously associated with religion ...."

Nonsense! "Life begins at conception" is and has been virtually universally recognized in the science of human embryology. Any claim to the contrary is part of the big lie of the pro-choice crowd.

The religious claim is derived in large part from the science. It is not unusual to find "pro-lifers" among embryologists whose stand is based on their science.

Bender said...

Conception is not arbitrary. It is the line at which a separate and individual being comes into existence.

When a living ovum from one person unites with the living sperm of another person, then there is a new being. If the ovum and sperm come from humans, then the new being is a -- follow closely now -- a human being. If the ovum and sperm are alive, then you have a living human being. If either the ovum or sperm are not alive, then you do not have a living human being.

That living human being begins at conception. He or she does not magically go from being inanimate to alive at some point during pregnancy. The very fact that such entity is consuming nutrition and growing demonstrates that he or she is alive.

You know, this really only became disputable when people decided that they wanted to kill that living human being. Then to justify that, they needed to engage in such irrational arguments that what is involved is not living or human or an individual being. But that is not surprising. The same arguments were used to dehumanize and depersonalize blacks and Jews.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

No Iggy, but if the fertilized egg is fully human and an American, should it not have a Social Security number?

I don't see why it should, unless we can use it to claim them as dependents on our taxes.

Be included in a Census maybe?

I wouldn't care one way or the other on this, as long as abortions were illegal. Not much point in counting people who you're just gonna kill anyway. ( You're welcome to apply that to death row if you want. )

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