Reducing Conflict

Randy Barnett said it well:

Libertarianism, though it may be radical, is far from extreme in comparison with its principal alternatives: the social justice of the Left or legal moralism of the Right. Social justice posits that everyone should get a certain amount of stuff; legal moralism posits that everyone should act in a certain way. But because there is no consensus about how much stuff each person should have or how exactly everyone should act, both of these comprehensive approaches are recipes for societal conflict. And the legal institutions that are necessary to implement each vision must be highly intrusive and coercive. In contrast, libertarianism is far more modest: it stipulates only that individuals may do what they please with what is theirs, requiring a legal system merely to define the proper jurisdiction of each person over their rightfully acquired property.

No, I don’t have a cite. I read this on a Facebook. That’s irrelevant, of course to its point. Libertarianism, and thus voluntaryism is the only political philosophy that can decrease conflict. Everything else increases it. Do all voluntaryists agree on what constitutes property? No, but therein lies the strength of voluntaryism. We don’t have to agree on property to agree on the voluntary principle, and hence nonviolent dispute resolution. If you favor decreasing conflict in the world, consider voluntaryism.


Save as PDFPrint

Written by 

Founder and editor of and, Skyler is a husband and unschooling father of three beautiful children. His writings include the column series “One Voluntaryist’s Perspective” and “One Improved Unit,” and blog series “Two Cents“. Skyler also wrote the books No Hitting! and Toward a Free Society, and edited the books Everything Voluntary and Unschooling Dads. You can hear Skyler chatting away on his podcasts, Everything Voluntary and Thinking & Doing.