Saturday, May 1, 2021

Liberty: The Collectivist Ideal

Liberty is not individualistic—it is a collectivist ideal which is found in societies where people are united under the umbrella of a good culture. A people cannot make liberty their aim unless they make the liberty of others in their society their aim. To make the liberty of others their aim, they have to identify with a good culture—which entails a shared sense of religion, morality, tradition, history, political principles, and nationhood. 

Since the individualists are obsessed with themselves, they are incapable of making liberty of all their aim. They demand liberty for those who accept their brand of individualism and ignore rest of the population. Their liberty is founded on a sense of alienation from society. They become part of anarchist and libertarian movements. Some individualists accept the pseudo-conception of total freedom, which is a form of fascism.


Henrik said...


Your blog post reminded me that one of the first questions I asked myself, as I was moving away from my former objectivist and atheist self, was why there has never been a free atheist society. It was also at this time I realized that the liberal conception of freedom as the “freedom from constraints” is fundamentally misguided. Sure, a religion is not a sufficient requirement for a free society, but it is necessary. Atheists will always try to create Utopia on earth whether it is the Dictatorship of the Proletariat, the Great Reset or any of a hundred other varieties.

It is in the nature of human beings to desire order before liberty. A brutal tyranny is brutal and tyrannical, but it is also in its own way, orderly. Most libertarians eventually realize that some order is required, either through massive government or through social norms, traditions, and rules of behaviour.

In my experience, most libertarians fear the strictures of culture and traditions more than they fear big government and eventually become progressive liberals. They maintain their atheism and profess their love for America, not as it is or has ever been but as an abstract Utopia.

Anoop Verma said...

@Henrik, Good points. I agree with what you say.