Keith Preston on The National Policy Institute and The Centre for a Stateless Society

From the Libertarian Alliance blog. The discussion that follows is interesting.

By Keith Preston

I am going chance the risk of offending everyone by offering a defense of both the National Policy Institute and C4SS.

I spoke to an NPI gathering a few years ago, and I am personally acquainted with many of the individuals who were involved in the brouhaha in Hungary. Describing the NPI as “Nazi” is like referring to all leftist thought as “Communist.” Leftists usually do not recognize the diversity of rightist thinking. The participants at a NPI gathering would include a wide spectrum of political opinions, including ideologies very few Americans have even heard of. When I have been to meetings sponsored by NPI or other overlapping groups I have encountered libertarians, paleconservatives, national-anarchists, national-bolsheviks, Nietzscheans, Catholics, evangelical Protestants, Orthodox, nationalists, identitarians, monarchists, Jewish conservatives, pan-Europeans, radical traditionalists, neo-pagans, fascists, race realists, and others too numerous to mention. The only common thread is usually disdain for the Left and a desire to preserve traditional Western civilization against mass immigration and demographic displacement. Whether this is a worthy goal or not may well be an individual value judgment, but it is hardly synonymous with Hitlerism.

As for my relationship with these people, some of them are interested in my critique of totalitarian humanism, some my advocacy of pan-secession, some my promotion of decentralized libertarian populism, and some all of these.While most of them are not philosophical anti-statists, they are most certainly enemies of the existing states we presently have in the Western world as the incident in Hungary demonstrates. Just as libertarians like Murray Rothbard and Karl Hess aligned themselves with Marxists and other leftists during the 1960s and 1970s against the excesses of democratic states at the time, so it is now often necessary for libertarians to align themselves with rightists to oppose certain present day excesses.

As for C4SS, I don’t agree that “progressive” is an apt label for them. Historic progressivism was for Americans what the Fabians were for England, i.e. forbears of the managerial public administration state. The classical progressives in the U.S. often worked in collusion with big capital for the ostensible purpose of enhancing the scientific management of society. Ironically, the class American progressives were usually quite racist, and were advocates of not only segregation but eugenics. They merely did an about face on this question after World War Two for obvious reasons (see Thomas Sowell’s work on this history). Today, most people claiming the label “progressive” for themselves are statist liberals and social democrats. I certainly don’t think is a fitting description for C4SS. However, C4SS and actual progressives do share much of the same cultural leftist outlook (e.g. disdain for traditional religion, a generally egalitarian outlook, regarding social conservatism as a primary evil, the view that illiberal opinions about race, gender, sexual orientation. etc. are the ultimate sins). Rather C4SS is a libertarian-leftist hybrid that sees libertarianism as a means to leftist ends, or vice versa.

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