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Thread: Freedom Beyond Liberalism

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    Freedom Beyond Liberalism

    I like and agree with what Freedom Beyond Liberalism has to say about "mediating institutions."

    ...I don’t believe nations emerge out of a vacuum. Ideas are enmeshed in cultural ecosystems. If America is stretched beyond its limits, it runs the risk of rejecting the constraints that made its propositional ideals possible. As the French philosopher Alexis de Tocqueville wrote, reflecting on America’s uniquely religious landscape, “Despotism can do without faith, but freedom cannot.”

    What I think Tocqueville means is that mediating institutions (family, church, or any voluntary association) must stand as meaning-giving buffers between an all-consuming libertarianism and an all-consuming state. Liberty’s loss is on the horizon when a society stresses only individual meaning or government enacting a utopian vision. Pope Benedict XVI warned against “the dictatorship of relativism.”

    Societies need authorities that anchor their foundations beyond mere convention, raw majoritarianism, expressive individualism, and state totalitarianism....
    Virgil's Aeneid, Book VI: "Tu ne cede malis sed contra audentior ito."

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    Mister D (03-25-2021)

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    I think there is a historical relationship between an all consuming libertarianism and an all consuming state. I understand the point made about where meaning and identity are ultimately derived. It's reminiscent of Robert Nisbet but the perception of liberty as freedom from has eroded those mediating structures and the state inevitably filled the vacuum. These are opposites only in theory. In reality, they feed off each other.
    Whoever criticizes capitalism, while approving immigration, whose working class is its first victim, had better shut up. Whoever criticizes immigration, while remaining silent about capitalism, should do the same.


    ~Alain de Benoist


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    Chris (03-25-2021)

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    Russia is the dangerous example for the USA.
    Communism failed as Socialism and Communism always do. However, the current Russian people still hang on to their government controls like heroin addicts.

    Meanwhile the average Russian makes less than the poverty level in the USA. Less than 30% has an automobile.

    We may break the back of progressives in the US but will we ever be able to take away dependence on the drug called government money?
    The Pope and many religions are pushing involuntary redistribution. These religions are not going to correct the addicts dependence.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mister D View Post
    I think there is a historical relationship between an all consuming libertarianism and an all consuming state. I understand the point made about where meaning and identity are ultimately derived. It's reminiscent of Robert Nisbet but the perception of liberty as freedom from has eroded those mediating structures and the state inevitably filled the vacuum. These are opposites only in theory. In reality, they feed off each other.

    Indeed, between the "all consuming libertarianism and an all consuming state"--or can we say all-consuming capitalism and all-consuming communism?--and the individual is nothing mediating. If you see communism as ultimately individualistic, individualism creates the capitalism/communism that consumes the individual. Yes, that is a theme of Nisbet. And Manent's Natural Law and Human Rights.
    Virgil's Aeneid, Book VI: "Tu ne cede malis sed contra audentior ito."

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chris View Post
    Indeed, between the "all consuming libertarianism and an all consuming state"--or can we say all-consuming capitalism and all-consuming communism?--and the individual is nothing mediating. If you see communism as ultimately individualistic, individualism creates the capitalism/communism that consumes the individual. Yes, that is a theme of Nisbet. And Manent's Natural Law and Human Rights.
    I was actually thinking about the supposedly diametrical opposition between capitalism an communism and wanted to refer to it but I was on my phone. Yes, they both lead to the same place (a bloated, bureaucratic state) but it's also true that socialism/communism wouldn't exist without capitalism. Similarly, the modern state would not exist were it not for the atomized individual and the decline of mediating structures that type of man entails.
    Whoever criticizes capitalism, while approving immigration, whose working class is its first victim, had better shut up. Whoever criticizes immigration, while remaining silent about capitalism, should do the same.


    ~Alain de Benoist


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    Quote Originally Posted by Mister D View Post
    I was actually thinking about the supposedly diametrical opposition between capitalism an communism and wanted to refer to it but I was on my phone. Yes, they both lead to the same place (a bloated, bureaucratic state) but it's also true that socialism/communism wouldn't exist without capitalism. Similarly, the modern state would not exist were it not for the atomized individual and the decline of mediating structures that type of man entails.
    True, Marx argued a nation had to progress into capitalism (industrialization) before it could progress to socialism. When it didn't, he and Engels tried to force it with communism. The Chinese decided to skip from agriculture past indistrialization to socialism via again force communism. Communism the bloated, bureaucratic state that as we witness under capitalism also happens. And I agree "the modern state would not exist were it not for the atomized individual and the decline of mediating structures that type of man entails."

    I think, too, the OP is saying capitalism, libertarian, free-market capitalism itself is al-consuming. We see that today in big media, big tech, big corporations doing well nigh whatever they please even to the detriment of the individual. And not just in their embrace of cancel culture. Adherence to individualism precludes reigning in the free market just as it precludes reigning in the bloated, bureaucratic state. Individualism puts the individual in a pickle.
    Virgil's Aeneid, Book VI: "Tu ne cede malis sed contra audentior ito."

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