The frontiers and fences founding the freedom fantasy
July 13, 2017 § 41 Comments
Political equal freedom is self contradictory, because politics – resolution of controvertible cases through the exercise of authority by those in authority – just is discriminatory restriction of freedom. Liberalism then is ultimately an attempt to nullify or escape from politics: to retreat into the frontier or behind fences and avoid other people and the controversies which arise when people live together: to practice politics through mechanical trickery while avoiding the messy problem of the existence of other human beings.
Frontiers and fences are mechanical features of the world not human beings, so if we can hide the ‘problem’ of politics behind them maybe we can escape from the debasing horror of accepting human authority as an inescapable feature of the world which never fades away, no matter how desperately (and sociopathically) we try to suppress it. I’ve mentioned before that the kind of person who comes closest to escaping from politics is a homeless madman living a brutish and short existence alone in the wilderness. If you never interact in any way with any other human beings, controversy with other human beings is avoided; though even Lord Greystoke had his hierarchy of apes to contend with.
As the number of people on Earth exceeds seven billion those fenced in frontiers become smaller and smaller, less and less habitable, creating a kind of hive. The ultimate expression of liberalism becomes the libertarian paradise of urban projects: vast modern unnatural structures of tiny apartment cubes fused together in almost-anarchy. The only thing you can’t get away with in the projects without bringing down the Supreme Court and the Feds is refuse to bake a cake for out-and-proud sodomites. But otherwise the rest of the world will try to avoid the anarchotyrannical singularity.
Politics is authoritative resolution of controvertible cases when human beings interact. To avoid politics is to avoid other human beings. This is why ‘freedom of association’ becomes so important to some kinds of liberals: once again the impulse is to just make other people and their problems go away, so the free and equal superman can live his life in peace.
But folks who want to live in a civilization, or even a tolerable small community, or merely a functional family, have to first accept the reality of messy, fallible, flawed, particular human authority vested in actual human beings. And if the community isn’t going to be intrinsically sociopathic, that means understanding and unequivocally rejecting political liberalism.
Unequivocally rejecting liberalism doesn’t guarantee that we won’t have a sociopathic community, of course.
But failing to unequivocally reject liberalism does guarantee that we will.