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Monday, April 28, 2008

Can Parents Let Their Children Starve In Ruwarchotopia?

Alex, Less -- all this big-tent talk just warms my heart.  But when you say there "is a place in the party" for libertarians who dissent from the Rothbardian/anarchist "plumbline", that place is the kids' table, right?  Why is it that the LP Platform needs to be 14,000 words long and yet have nothing in it that you anarchists disagree with on principle, while minarchists, Catoites, geolibertarians, Chicago-schoolers etc. have to suck it up and live with up to a dozen statements that they reject on principle?
The LP needs a big tent with one big level table in it.  We non-anarchists are tired of sitting at the kids' table.
Alex, the lengthy Ruwart "short answer" you link to raises a couple of questions.  First, if (as Ruwart says) "libertarians are split into two camps, both believing that their view best expresses the non-aggression principle", then one wonders why Ruwart apparently thinks the LP Platform needs to endorse the extreme "pro-choice" position.  How is she saying "pro-lifers have a place in the party" if she's admitting that their position is being thrown under the bus on the basis of a question she describes as a toss-up?  Can the Platform Committee apply that fig leaf to anarchism, and say use the same "libertarians disagree" excuse to endorse Chicago/Cato-style minarchism?
More interestingly, Ruwart writes that "Libertarians of this persuasion generally believe that parents do not have a *duty* to support their offspring".  This suggests that Ruwart agrees with Rothbard that parents have a "right to allow *any* baby, whether deformed or not, to die. [...] The parent should have the legal right *not* to feed the child, i.e., to allow it to die. The law, therefore, may not properly compel the parent to feed a child or to keep it alive."  So here's a tough question for Ruwart and Ruwarchists: do you agree with Rothbard on this?  If -- underline the "if" -- Ruwart believes that parents in Ruwarchotopia should be free to let their children starve, then consensual childhood sex/prostitution is no longer going to be the top concern about her.