One day, you stop writing. You figure, hell, nobody reads this thing anyway. Nobody seems to see the problem with authoritarianism, as long as it’s their pet issue. Nobody not nobody cares a lick about the 4th Amendment. The easiest thing to do is stop writing, stop trying, stop caring.
The easiest thing to surrender is your integrity.
Over on the About page, I make a point of writing that my libertarianism didn’t start with Ayn Rand. I meant it — I arrived at libertarianism through sheer reason (tales of which are all over the archives here). Ascribing my transformation from state-worshiping conservative to state-hating libertarian to the philosophy of objectivism seemed like it cheapened the whole thing.
But I’ll say this: Rand has her place.
I just finished reading The Fountainhead, which is not the best book ever written. The rapeyness is weird and the penultimate courtroom speech is…well, it’s boring and hollow. But The Fountainhead joins Anagrams and The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress and One Hundred Years of Solitude and The New York Trilogy as the best-timed books ever.
Anagrams warmed my heart in a time of loneliness. Moon set my mind on fire dreaming of a better world. Solitude and New York taught me to think of narrative in whole new ways.
And The Fountainhead helped me rediscover integrity.
The story is unimportant to this post; what’s important is the idea of Dominique Francon. When faced with a world in which creativity and ambition and freedom were no longer celebrated — crushed, even– she gave completely over. If the world couldn’t accept life and liberty and property, she would go limp and let the current take her.
And faced with that choice — between having integrity and giving in — well, here I am.
Nothing has changed. America’s false dichotomy is between a terrible President and a man clinically designed to make a terrible President. Still nobody loves the 4th Amendment. Everyone is still clearly retarded, if Facebook on 9/11 is any indication.
But you know what? Screw it.
Liberty is too important. The 4th Amendment is too important. Wading through the slough of mediocrity is too important.
If you don’t, you’re just there, stuck in the slough of mediocrity with the people that don’t edit videos before they post them to Facebook…with the people who think that Mitt Romney is a good choice or that Barack Obama in any way deserves to be reelected…with the people who think that it’s totally Constitutional to drug test all welfare recipients…with the people who think so highly of abject authoritarianism and so little of their fellow humans that they vote Green Party.
To use the parlance of our times, I can’t abide by these things.
So consider this your warning message, world. The rust is hereby shaken off, and I’m reading freaking Albert J. Nock, people.
Things are about to get awesome.