Saturday August 30, 2014
Earlier this month the New York Times wondered aloud if the “libertarian moment” had arrived. A good question, to be sure.
To answer it, though, Times reporter Robert Draper sought out not quite the top libertarian thinkers in the world, but instead those people most easily reached within a ten-minute walk from the Capitol or the Empire State Building.
Draper begins with an ex-MTV personality and proceeds from there. None of the people whose work and writing have shaped the libertarian movement, and who have converted so many people to our point of view, make an appearance. Ask the hordes of young kids who are devouring libertarian classics how many of them were introduced to libertarianism, or even slightly influenced, by the figures on whom the Times chooses to rely. You already know the answer.
The movement’s major thinkers have rather more intellectual heft behind them, which I suspect is why the Times would prefer to keep them from you. Far better for libertarianism to seem like an ill-focused, adolescent rebellion against authority per se, instead of a serious, intellectually exciting school of thought that challenges every last platitude about the State we were taught in its ubiquitous schools.