Gordon Fitch gcf at
Mon Oct 23 18:11:44 PDT 2000

Miles Jackson:
> I imagine Doug will throw in something here, but here's my take: the
> individualism inherent to the libertarian position is an essential element
> of existing social and economic relations in our society. Say what you
> will about robots, but the rhetoric of free will and choice and private
> property are taken for granted by both your "robots" and your supposedly
> poorly socialized "libertarians". Why are these ideas so widespread?
> They are not natural, nor necessary in human societies: rather, their
> function is purely ideological. The belief in the sovereign individual
> who owns stuff is, if I may be dramatic, the psychological lynchpin of
> a capitalistic economic system that systematically transfers wealth
> from the workers to the elite.
> ...

It does not appear to me that this ideology is rightly called "individualism" since it is not interested in the individualities of everyone. The ownership and control of the means of production by a private elite strongly implies the collectivization and disindividuation of the members of the working class and of the poor, if not the bourgeoisie; but probably of the last as well, since they have to combine in a highly-organized and disciplined team to resist serious changes to the order of things.

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