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Libertarians and the Great Holocaust Denial Scandal

A writer named Mark Ames at Pando Daily first "exposed libertarians" as racists because a 1970s Reason magazine published "pro-apartheid South Africa articles during the 1970s" and then outed the same magazine for dedicating an entire "special issue" to promoting Holocaust deniers.

Groupthink: When everyone gets splattered from the same ideological slop bucket.
Garry Reed/ free clipart

The article rages on for almost 5,000 words with multiple more contained in page and cover reproductions, calling everyone connected with early Reason issues – Editor Matt Welch, the Koch brothers backers, longtime contributors like Robert Poole, Manny Klausner and Nick Gillespie, a "Who’s Who of early American Holocaust deniers" and many others – hypocrites, horrifying, notorious American pro-Nazi activists, anti-Jewish, and et cetera.

It may all be true, half true, hyperbole, counter-attacks by the anti-freedom hardcore lefty-liberal crowd or just more of the now-familiar left-right hate-mongering du jour.

So how should today's libertarians respond to all of this?

Perhaps by pointing out the groupthink mentality that inevitably drives all screeds such as this: Exposing some libertarians as evil makes all libertarians evil.

This would be like claiming that since Hitler was evil this makes everyone on the political right evil; since Leninism/Stalinism was evil this makes everyone on the political left evil; since the Catholic Church's Spanish Inquisition was evil this makes every Catholic evil; since Genghis Khan and Mao Tse-tung and Pol Pot slaughtered millions this makes all Asians evil...

Today a libertarian is a person who accepts and embraces the Zero Aggression Principle, that no one may initiate force, intimidation or fraud against another. That means a true, consistent libertarian rejects both left and right political aggressionists and wherever else they may come from, including from deep within the very ranks of those who call themselves "libertarian."

You get the idea about groupthink, the Biblical and Modern Progressive idea that the sins of the father, or politically incorrect individual, should be visited upon the children and the children’s children unto the third and the fourth generation – or just everyone else who's been shoved into the ideological hate-monger's pigeonhole.

By implication this is supposed to make all libertarians racists and Holocaust deniers.

The reality is that personal responsibility is the mirror image of personal freedom; nobody, including an individual libertarian or his or her individual progressive or conservative neighbor, is morally responsible for anyone else's opinion – no matter what label each one chooses.

Today's libertarians should always, without exception, treat every individual as an individual.

And so, but sadly seldom, should today's conservatives and progressives.

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