Roger United said; I have been thinking, lately, that libertarianism and Christianity aren’t compatible. At least not in my understanding of libertarianism as it pertains to abortion, gay marriage, prostitution, drugs, etc. Could you shed some light on this or point me somewhere that does?
That is a great question, and I actually have a thought, that has been forming in the depths of the waste land known as my brain.
I have really struggled with “what the ultimate goal” is. I have enough invested in this system that I am not going to give it up, unless what we are trying to achieve makes sense. That is why I am so adamant that Racist don’t go with Liberty. Thus we eventually have to be working toward “something better,” if I (and I assume others) are going to sacrifice significantly. That “what is better” has really vexed me. What went wrong with the American Republic? What went wrong? I will not go into what I think what went wrong, because that is an entire post in itself. However, what are we ultimately trying to build? I have coalesced around two concepts and some thoughts.
Thoughts. I do not believe that laissez faire capitalism libertarian theory, the economic system, is compatible with Divine Law, or what others call Natural Law. I have this thought, I don’t care how much you think your (enter type of plant here) is your personal property, if what you are doing is making the river catch on fire and I or anyone lives downstream has a problem with that. Now, if you want to say “laissez faire capitalism, personal property” how do we get the owner of the plant to stop being an idiot? If you have to say, that we have to get our neighbors and get our guns and kill them, I think … well I think that is not a functional society. Anyway, laissez faire business often leads to Socialism or Communism. Why? Well, if a business does not provide health care, guess what, don’t be mad when those people vote for the government to provide that, they are still getting sick, they still have kids. If you say laissez faire capitalism, and your workers can’t support their families, don’t be mad when they Unionize and try to get a living wage. Laissez faire capitalism often leads to socialism or communism. Please take a look at The Church and the Libertarian, by Christopher A. Ferrara. Chris Ferrara goes over the problem with laissez faire capitalism, the economic theory, and why it is not compatible with people who believe in the teaching of Christ. Now on to political to approaches I have coalesced around.
Libertarian Christian Republic. In this approach the society we are trying to build for our children and their children would be open-to-all, and _primarily_ would be a leave you alone society. What you do in your private life (libertarian) is your business. What you do in the public square is per our Biblical understanding. However, if the entire society would understand that its libertarian principles come from our Biblical understanding of man, the state, and the economy works. In this case, pornography, homosexuality and adultery would all be tolerated as long as they kept it to themselves and used personal property (libertarian). An example of this is if a bunch of Pagans wanted to build a new Stone Hedge on personal property, or even wanted to build it on public land with their own money no one would care. It is their property (money), and their business, not governmental. However the government would not be able to make laws that against the Bible, like abortion, but other than that, would be silent.
Christian libertarian Republic. In this case, we are “closer” perhaps too close to a theocracy. In this society, Christians would be welcomed non-Christians would be tolerated. The Ten Commandments would govern public and private life. In this form of society, we are a libertarian Republic that is consistent with Christian (Catholic for me) teachings on man, economy and the state. In this case, homosexuality, adultery, pornography would all be outlawed, even when using your own money and private property. How far you “enforce it” would be up to question, but, all laws and norms would be consistent with Christian teaching. Our neo-Pagans would not be allowed to build a new Stone Hedge on public property. They would allow them to build it on personal property (libertarian). The government would not only not be able to make laws that are against the Bible, like abortion, but would actively promote the Christian faith.
I do not know which of these I believe are more compatible with the teachings of Christ. I don’t know. Perhaps we can have a conversation, a debate. However from my thinking, this is what I have come up with so far. Here is a couple of quotes from The Church and Libertarian talking about libertarian laissez faire capitalism theory, but I think it says something about a “pure” libertarian political society.
First, in an era when (I will use the word Catholic for Christians in general) Catholics and other Christians are faced with the choice of the lesser of two or three evils in every election, this book is not about whether believers in Christ and the objective moral order should vote for a libertarian candidate…indeed, it can be stipulated here that a libertarian President of the United States would represent an immense improvement order the two-party status quo.
Second, this book is not a critique of “libertarianism” in the broad and benign sens of a call for limited government consistent with Catholic teaching on man, economy and state to be defended here, including the principle of subsidiary.