A while back we wrote a piece about Gavin Webb, who wrote about Home Education. Gavin Webb was a Liberal Democrat councillor at Stoke on Trent. He called himself a ‘Libertarian Liberal Democrat‘, which of course, makes no sense at all:
[…] Are you a Libertarian, or are you a Liberal Democrat? How can you possibly remain a member of a party that explicitly wants to eradicate the rights of people to run their families as they choose? […]
We wrote. Now, Mr Webb has dumped the Liberal Democrats and joined the Libertarian Party. This is significant because:
“Whilst we have a number of Parish and Town Councillors, Gavin is the first City Councillor that has crossed the floor to a truly Radical Party, one that wants to change the relationship between State and the Individual to the point where the State is subordinate to the will of the people, not the people subordinate to the will of the State.
And here is the full announcement:
PRESS RELEASE COUNCILLOR GAVIN WEBB OF STOKE ON TRENT CITY COUNCIL RESIGNS FROM THE LIBERAL DEMOCRATS AND JOINS THE LIBERTARIAN PARTY (LPUK)
Gavin Webb, who was selected as the Liberal Democrat prospective parliamentary candidate for Burton in 2008 and elected as a Lib Dem councillor on Stoke-on-Trent City Council in 2007, has today announced that he has resigned from the Liberal Democrats.
He says: “I have made a good many friends in my fourteen years of activism in the Liberal Democrats and I hope that those friendships will continue, but regretfully I have decided to resign from the Liberal Democrats.
“The party, like the Conservative and Labour parties, has become a party of the establishment. It has unfortunately firmly wedded itself to the belief that there are primarily government solutions to the problems facing our country, and in the process, they are adopting policies that undermine our rights and freedoms as individuals.
“As far as I can see, most political parties in the UK appear to trust individuals when it comes to voting for councillors, MPs and MEPs, but once comfortably in power they are reluctant to trust individuals when it comes to them making choices about their own lives.
“There is however one political party – the Libertarian Party – that believes in giving responsibility back to individuals over their own lives and their own finances; and it is this party that I have now decided to join.
“We are on the road of authoritarianism, where government is our ruler rather than us being the ruler of our government. It is time for each and every single one of us to make a stand against government and those who feed off it, and demand the reduction of its size and scope.
“From what I’ve seen from many Lib Dem parliamentarians and councillors I don’t believe the Liberal Democrat Party has the inclination to argue for smaller government in defence of our individual rights.
“Though there are some good classical liberal and libertarian types in the party, with whom I hope to continue to have a good relationship, their voices are crowded out by people who believe it perfectly okay to dictate to people how they should live their lives. I don’t wish any longer to be a part of that.
And for the record:
There is another vital tactical reason for cleaving to pure principle. It is true that day-to-day social and political events are the resultants of many pressures, the often unsatisfactory outcome of the push-and-pull of conflicting ideologies and interests. But if only for that reason, it is all the more important for the libertarian to keep upping the ante. The call for a two percent tax reduction may achieve only the slight moderation of a projected tax increase; a call for a drastic tax cut may indeed achieve a substantial reduction. And, over the years, it is precisely the strategic role of the “extremist” to keep pushing the matrix of day-to-day action further and further in his direction. The socialists have been particularly adept at this strategy. If we look at the socialist program advanced sixty, or even thirty years ago, it will be evident that measures considered dangerously socialistic a generation or two ago are now considered an indispensable part of the “mainstream” of the American heritage. In this way, the day-to-day compromises of supposedly “practical” politics get pulled inexorably in the collectivist direction. There is no reason why the libertarian cannot accomplish the same result. In fact, one of the reasons that the conservative opposition to collectivism has been so weak is that conservatism, by its very nature, offers not a consistent political philosophy but only a “practical” defense of the existing status quo, enshrined as embodiments of the American “tradition.” Yet, as statism grows and accretes, it becomes, by definition, increasingly entrenched and therefore “traditional”; conservatism can then find no intellectual weapons to accomplish its overthrow.
Cleaving to principle means something more than holding high and not contradicting the ultimate libertarian ideal. It also means striving to achieve that ultimate goal as rapidly as is physically possible. In short, the libertarian must never advocate or prefer a gradual, as opposed to an immediate and rapid, approach to his goal. For by doing so, he undercuts the overriding importance of his own goals and principles. And if he himself values his own goals so lightly, how highly will others value them?
In short, to really pursue the goal of liberty, the libertarian must desire it attained by the most effective and speediest means available. It was in this spirit that the classical liberal Leonard E. Read, advocating immediate and total abolition of price and wage controls after World War II, declared in a speech, “If there were a button on this rostrum, the pressing of which would release all wage and price controls instantaneously, I would put my finger on it and push!”2
The libertarian, then, should be a person who would push the button, if it existed, for the instantaneous abolition of all invasions of liberty. Of course, he knows, too, that such a magic button does not exist, but his fundamental preference colors and shapes his entire strategic perspective.
Murray Rothbard For A New Liberty: The Libertarian Manifesto
So many times, in front of so many people, and for so many different things!
There are people out there who ‘do not like Libertarians’. For certain, Mr Webb will encounter these people. What needs to be done is that the proper name needs to be given to them when they are discussed or confronted; they are VIOLENT PEOPLE.
Collectivists are VIOLENT PEOPLE who advocate using VIOLENCE on others so that their philosophy is followed. No doubt these not so insightful people will strongly deny they are violent, but the fact remains the same; behind every one of their policies lies the threat of violence that will be done to those who do not obey.
That is the reality behind the well meaning ideas and eloquent words of these people; brutal, immoral and unjustifiable VIOLENCE.