Button Pushing and the Radical Libertarian

Post by Skyler J. Collins. Originally written August 2011.

Since I once claimed to be a radical libertarian, the question presents itself, “What is a radical libertarian?” Though I’ll give my own thoughts on the question, I could not answer this any better than one of the greatest of radical libertarians, Murray Rothbard:

The true test…of the radical spirit, is the button-pushing test: if we could push the button for instantaneous abolition of unjust invasions of liberty, would we do it? If we would not do it, we could scarcely call ourselves libertarians, and most of us would only do it if primarily guided by a passion for justice.

The genuine libertarian, then, is, in all senses of the word, an “abolitionist”; he would, if he could, abolish instantaneously all invasions of liberty, whether it be, in the original coining of the term, slavery, or whether it be the manifold other instances of State oppression. He would, in the words of another libertarian in a similar connection, “blister my thumb pushing that button!”

Simply beautiful! He smacks the nail once and it’s flattened. I wholeheartedly agree with Rothbard and joyfully claim to be such a radical. So then, in my estimation, what would the button that I’ve pushed abolish exactly? I’ll start at home and move outward:

I think that about does it. I may have missed one or two things, but since all public funding of government would be abolished, what I missed will disappear. I encourage the inquirer to explore each link above. That, my friends, is what it means to be a radical libertarian.
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