Opinion from a Libertarian ViewPoint

Taking Stock of the Assets We Have (and We Have a Lot of Them)

Posted by M. C. on August 28, 2022

It’s challenging to be a pessimistic libertarian. Luther was nearly assassinated, and his daughter almost killed in “Absolute Power,” but in the end everything worked out.

Don’t let the fact that the movie is fictional discourage you. Use fiction as a guideline and make your own movie real. If you feel your optimism fading turn up the grit and move ahead.

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George Ford Smith

No one knows what the future will bring because the future doesn’t bring anything. People do. You and I and the rest of the world make the future, some more so than others—some a lot more so. The leading future makers of the past century—at least those who entered national politics—have left a long trail of blood and misery, and today’s political leaders are staying the course.

There’s an old saying: “Man proposes, but God disposes.” In other words: “If you want to make God laugh, tell him your plans.”

If the US government is today’s god, what chance do a relative handful of freedom-loving people have against such an institutional behemoth? We’re only a false flag away from martial law. The internment camps are built and ready for occupancy. The police are militarized and ready to carry out orders. The voters remain insouciant. This is no time for optimism. It’s time to run for our lives.

But before we take off, we would do well to take stock of our assets.

There’s a scene in the Clint Eastwood movie “Absolute Power” that illustrates the point I wish to make. Eastwood, as legendary jewel thief Luther Whitney, witnesses the murder of a young woman during one of his heists. The president (Gene Hackman) and his SS agents are the murderers. The victim is the wife of the president’s biggest supporter, an octogenarian billionaire (E.G. Marshall) whose mansion Luther was robbing.

Whitney was hiding behind a one-way mirror at the time but later learns he’s a suspect, because of the missing jewels. Luther knows the president’s henchmen will try to kill him before he can expose them and rather than fight such a powerful foe, he arranges to leave the country.

While at the airport ready to depart he sees a staged press conference on TV. It’s an appalling political spectacle. A mournful president is offering sympathy to the bereaved husband, who’s standing beside him. “This man has been like a father to me,” he announces, then turns to his friend. “I would give the world to lessen your pain.” He blots his eyes, apparently too choked up to continue.

Luther simmers with fury. “You heartless whore,” he says aloud to the TV. “I’m not about to run from you.”

Luther rediscovered his true grit.

He also had conclusive evidence in his possession, as well as a daughter he cared about. What about you? If optimism still seems like a stretch, ask yourself what it would take for you, an informed libertarian, to be pessimistic.

A Libertarian’s Assets

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