Paul Gottfried on Totalitarian Humanism: "The Only Solution is to Destroy the State"

That’s not the term he uses, but he describes it perfectly and offers the correct solution. Watch Sean Gabb’s video of Gottfried’s lecture at the 2011 annual conference of the Property and Freedom Society in Bodrum, Turkey. It’s interesting how a former leftist radical like me and a former Buckleyite conservative like Gottfried eventually came to almost identical views from opposite ends of the political spectrum.

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  1. I hope your views are not that identical. What I’m saying here should not be misconstrued as a personal attack on Gottfried, but I happen to be very suspicious of someone who supports libertarian policies in a n opportunistic way as Gottfried makes clear himself in the video that he does. I disagree with is contention that the state is the sole culprit in the social changes that he disapproves off, I happen to think there are a number of reasons for these changes and I would also argue that the state has done at least as much to enforce things like discriminatory polices against other races and minorities in the past as it has made p[policies in their favour in the last few decades. Also, when he says that inequality is a central plank of what it means to be a Conservative, I think that it’s clear he is talking about more than just differences of ability and other such attributes among people that really do exist. What I think he also means is that some people are destined to rule others and some are destined to be ruled by others.

    To make it clear, I have no objection to someone wanting to live in a conservative society if it’s voluntarily chosen anymore than I have a problem with someone wanting to follow an extremely ascetic religion or philosophy embracing fasting, celibacy, vegetarianism, my problem is when some want to enforce such things upon unwilling participants as I believe many of these paleocons do.

  2. Paul is obviously more of a conservative than I am. What I mean is that we both identify what I call “totalitarian humanism” as the primary ideological enemy, and the state as its principal purveyor, with the solution being to smash the state.

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