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Movie Trailer Review: 'Behold a Pale Horse' is rightwing, not libertarian

The trailer for the political film "Behold a Pale Horse 2: America Aflame" (in theaters this August) is locked inside a private Vimeo video with the password liberty2014.

Libertarians encourage everyone to see the entire government bird of prey, not just one of its two wings.
Dalai Sanjaa/YouTube

One enthusiastic libertarian claims that by supporting it "We have a rare opportunity for a political film with a libertarian theme to have voice."

But while most libertarians may agree with the message is there really a libertarian theme here? The trailer sounds deeply hardcore rightwing reactionary, repeatedly invoking familiar traditional memes like Constitutionalism, patriotism, Washington Crossing the Delaware, Remember the Alamo, and many other rightist shibboleths.

This review, focusing on a similar public YouTube trailer from 2012 subtitled "America's Last Chance," begins by sounding the alarm that "our society is moving toward Marxism" without sounding any alarms about the corporatist/fascist economics or the jingoist/neocon foreign policy or the Communist/Nazi-like police state that already describes our society.

A Libertarian film wouldn't fail to mention any of that.

"They claim to seek a New World Order, nations without borders" Charlie Daniels sings in his raspy voice. But the libertarian free market demands not only unfettered movement in goods and services but in labor as well; otherwise the market isn't free. Libertarians do reject any "New World Order" that translates into "World Government" just as they reject all organized crime syndicates, which all governments are by definition, America's included.

"We're dealing, in fact, with a conspiracy here, of power, and it's very secret" insists Joel Skousen of World Affairs Brief, immediately raising the age-old question that if the conspiracy is secret how does he know about it?

It is a conspiracy, of course, but as explained in a recent Libertarian News Examiner article, government is the "real, completely known and openly admitted conspiracy." Libertarians understand this but apparently the political right thinks that only the left power-seekers do conspiracies.

Gerald Celente of Trends Research institute cynically complains that the typical reaction to the film's message is "It rolls over people's shoulders; their eyes go back; what's for lunch?" Yet what can he expect when virtually all of the rhetoric is rightwing echo chamber?

The only clearly identifiable Libertarian in the video is 2004 Libertarian Party Presidential Candidate Michael Badnarik who simply says, "Once you learn the truth you can never unlearn it."

The truth that libertarians can't unlearn is that the leftwing and the rightwing are merely two wings on the same freedom-eating vulture.

Finding fault with your foes while noticing none of your own is a favorite hobbyhorse of partisan politicos, making this film a pale horse of a different color for libertarians.