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A Rude Anger

June 1, 2009

According to its website, AlterNet “is a key player in the echo chamber of progressive ideas and vision.” Hoping to reverberate in that din of wisdom, Brad Reed heaps some scorn on libertarians, seasteading, and anything else in that tag cloud: 

In the end, the strangest part about the seastead project isn’t its founders’ impracticalities but rather their base motivations. 

Some others, like Love of the World,  have dilated on Reed’s “progressive” criticism:

Although these fantasies of self-appointed sooperman sequestration are a recurring libertopian wet-dream, it is apparently an especially alluring notion now that these would-be titans and grifters fear they might actually be taxed and regulated a little in an Obama Administration (if only) thus slowing by a smidge their relentless ongoing (or at any rate pined for) looting and raping of the planet and of the overabundant majority of the people and other beings who share it with them. 

Base motivations! Raping the world! Ohhhhh, the inhumanity! 

Okay, let’s talk about this like adults, mmmm’kay? Unfortunately the U.S. does not provide exit interviews for those who decide to permanently leave, so we don’t know why they flew the coop.  Yes, it may come as a surprise, but people do in fact emigrate from the U.S. (Even with BO as Prez! Can you believe it?) They leave for all sorts of reasons–perhaps they fell in love, perhaps they found a better paying job, or whatever. I can’t find any up to date numbers, but this page estimates that over 2 million people emigrated between 1995 and 2005. Much to the Stasi’s chagrin, none of them had to list the reasons why they decided to leave, but in any event,  I can’t find any AlterNet stories impugning their base motives for leaving. Nor do I see any blog posts at Love of the World on how these miscreants are skirting their duties to the progressive doctrine of slow suicide–I mean, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. And so I eagerly await the next development in “progressive” thinking: exit interviews in which those emigrating must prove their exit is worthy of State approval. It wouldn’t be the Ministry of the Interior, after all, unless they knew what was going on inside our heads.

  1. kurt9 permalink
    June 5, 2009 6:46 pm

    It strikes me as odd that leftist-liberals would be attacking seasteading, when it seems that their even leftier-liberal counterparts have the same idea

    The liberal-left is always intolerant of those who do not share their beliefs. In this, they are no different than a group of religious fanatics.

  2. Niklas Blanchard permalink
    June 4, 2009 6:23 pm

    It strikes me as odd that leftist-liberals would be attacking seasteading, when it seems that their even leftier-liberal counterparts have the same idea:

    Of course, their moral reasoning is different…I guess some are always holier than thou…

  3. Paula Zipkis permalink
    June 2, 2009 1:27 pm

    Our society has become too polite to be willing to accept that there may be high functioning contributing members of society that are not happy with the status quo. True representation in government does not mean a touchy feely Robin Hood approach…Main stream liberal media does not promote or truly address any negative take on government spending, just look at the lack of coverage of the Tea Parties, no matter how large the grouping, these people have been catagorized as purely fringe.

  4. Mike Gibson permalink*
    June 1, 2009 7:38 pm

    It’ll be interesting to see how this plays out in the long run. You’re quite right: when conscription was U.S. law, the public didn’t look kindly on draft dodgers heading off to live in Canada. Still, I believe the marginal cases will show the way. First with towns and states–no one has a problem if I leave tax-heavy New Jersey to live more comfortably in Connecticut. And no one really cares if I leave California to marry a man in Massachusetts. As I mention in the post, many people leave the U.S. to live elsewhere. Again no one cares. Also, many people I know have two passports. This doesn’t seem to arouse any anger, really.

    So if we start with these marginal cases, and move to the the outer, like seasteading, where do things change along the way?

  5. June 1, 2009 5:08 am

    This is a major reason I worry about the success of seasteading. Many people see it as morally wrong for you to escape your political obligations: they don’t accept self-ownership, and/or see commerce as exploitation(raping the earth, and all that). Policy tracks public opinion, and I would be very surprised if existing governments didn’t make serious efforts to enforce their laws on you.

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