I seem to
be in a rut. This essay is yet another
one critical of a semi demi quasi libertarian journalist who writes
regularly for Canada’s National Post, a newspaper roughly
equivalent ideologically to "our" War Street Journal.
Today’s missive is aimed at one Chris Selley, who wrote an op
ed entitled Religious
education under fire on February 5, 2013.
bit of background. Canada, believe it or not, is even more politically
correct than is the good old US of A. There, the Christian religion
is widely and heavily deprecated as being inconsistent with the
ethos of the day which supports sex before marriage, gay rights,
etc. Trinity Western University (TWU), one such institution, has
the temerity to insist that all students and employees must sign
a covenant prohibiting "sexual intimacy that violates the
sacredness of marriage between a man and a woman."
A few years
ago a fuss was made by the politically correct left over allowing
teacher certifications for graduates of TWU, who might infect
their young charges with this unacceptable philosophy. More recently
this university has now begun the process of attempting to open
up a law school, and the usual howls of outrage are heard. Selley
reports that the president of the Canadian Council Association
of Law Deans objected to this covenant on the ground that "Discrimination
on the basis of sexual orientation is unlawful in Canada and fundamentally
at odds with the core values of all Canadian law schools."
He did so in order to convince the Federation of Canadian Law
Societies, the accrediting agency, to oppose this initiative of
TWU’s, as if they needed any help in this direction.
To his great
credit, Selley quite properly gives this opposition to TWU’s plan
the back of his hand (he does have some libertarian sensibilities
after all.) He notes that Muslim students are treated quite a
bit more respectfully than Christians. He rejects the claim from
this "human rights" quarter that this covenant would
lead to a shoddy law school, noting that several law schools at
religious universities in the U.S. are very prestigious. This
journalist duly notes the several years success of TWU’s teacher’s
he gets into a bit of trouble, at least with principled libertarians.
He attempts to refute this argument put forth by yet another member
of Canada’s very strong "progressive" movement: "Would
the governing bodies of the legal profession in Canada approve
a law school that prohibited mixed-race sexual intimacy?"
Selley attempt to refute this charge? He states:
a private university, libertarians would argue TWU should be allowed
to admit whomever it wants. That’s more or less where I’m at:
A private university you wouldn’t want to go to anyway is not
the equivalent of a Woolworth’s lunch counter, or of government
marriage benefits. But the mainstream reaction, if we discovered
some hitherto unknown whites-only university in the B.C. interior,
would be to shut the place down — not its law school, not its
engineering faculty, the whole place. If people think TWU is doing
the moral equivalent, why are we only talking about its law school?
There’s no moral difference between anti-gay discrimination and
anti-black discrimination. And the only legal difference is that
a religious freedom defence (sic) is far more likely in the first
case than in the second — and, perhaps, that we’re only just getting
rolling down this road. The full spectrum of gay rights is a newer
in my craw here is that crack about Woolworth’s lunch counter.
I cannot be 100% sure, I wish this man would write more clearly,
but in my interpretation Selley is saying that this firm was not
justified in refusing to serve black people; the implication is
that the so called Civil Rights Act of 1964 was entirely justified.
Of course, one of the basic tenets of libertarianism is the law
of free association. No one should be compelled, at the point
of a government gun, to associate with anyone else, against his
will. Compelling Woolworths to seat blacks is thus incompatible
with libertarianism. It was a violation of their private property
rights over their establishment.
is a very important aspect of liberty. It is crucial. Indeed,
its lack was the major problem with slavery. The slaves could
not quit. They were forced to "associate" with their
masters when they would have vastly preferred not to do so. Otherwise,
slavery wasn’t so bad. You could pick cotton, sing songs, be fed
nice gruel, etc. The only real problem was that this relationship
was compulsory. It violated the law of free association, and that
of the slaves’ private property rights in their own persons. The
Civil Rights Act of 1964, then, to a much smaller degree of course,
made partial slaves of the owners of establishments like Woolworths.
of good will are inclined to reject this argument. They see racial
discrimination as economically harmful to the targeted group.
They are economically illiterate. They do not realize that these
sorts of boycotts have very little power. When employers discriminate
against a given group, they drive their wages down. But this makes
hiring them, by other employers, much more profitable, ceteris
paribus. If some firms will not sell lunch to blacks, others will
arise to do so, and be able to earn greater profits than would
otherwise be the case. If some companies force blacks to ride
in the back of the bus, others with no such rules will compete
for their custom, and earn extraordinary profits from doing so.
In all such cases, in the free marketplace, the latter (non discriminators)
will tend to drive the former (discriminators) out of business.
this work in the south in the early part of the 20th
century? Did economic law function differently, or not at all,
in that time and place? Not a bit of it. These salutary effects
were not allowed to come into being due to the government
and its Jim Crow laws that prohibited the competition of the non
discriminators. If, is as usually assumed by our friends on the
left ("progressives" as they now call themselves after having
besmirched the name "liberal" which they stole from us), ordinary
white people so hated and reviled black people, why were Jim Crow
laws even necessary in the first place? Couldn’t racism, all on
its own, have accomplished this goal? No, and this was due to
the economics of the case, as mentioned above. Without Jim Crow
laws enforcing such behavior, the "magic of the market"
would have rendered this type of racism impotent. The two people
who have done more than perhaps anyone else to shed some basic
economic light on the economics of discrimination are Thomas Sowell
and Walter Williams. Google them. Read them. (I note that initially
Rand Paul took a splendid libertarian position on this matter,
but then in an interview with Rachel Maddow, unfortunately backed
down. In sharp contrast Ron Paul continues to uphold this free
association banner of libertarianism.)
with the intellectual position of the anti discrimination, anti
free association folk is that they always apply their totalitarian
notions to the business world, not the personal one. If discrimination
against black people ought to be against the law, why not apply
this to both realms of human interaction. After all, murder
is illegal both in the bed room and in the board room.
this work if implemented? Human "rights" commissions
would insist that if blacks are, say, 10% of the population, and
whites 90%, then the correct proportion of intermarriages ought
to take place. If there are too few, then no more marriages should
be allowed until this statistical representation once again reoccurred.
After all, sans discrimination, this is exactly what we would
expect. Similarly, even for dating. If there were an all white
couple, or an all black couple, then each of the four of them
should be queried as to whether or not ugly discrimination were
responsible for their choices. They ought to be made to prove
their purity. Statistical disparity, as it is now in the realms
of business and education, would be evidence of racially motivated
discrimination. The burden of proof to demonstrate otherwise would
be upon them.
Now let us
apply this to sexual relations, and we will see that anti free
association laws logically imply compulsory bisexuality. Take
heterosexual men, for example. They are disgusting creatures.
They arbitrarily and unconscionably eliminate half the human race
as potential love-bed partners. If that is not prejudice, then
nothing is (it is politically correct for me to castigate heterosexual
women; everyone knows they are evil; as a staunch believer in
political correctitude, I am happy to abide by its mandates.)
Now consider heterosexual women, for example. They, too, are disgusting
creatures. They arbitrarily and unconscionably eliminate half
the human race as potential love-bed partners. If that is not
prejudice, then nothing is (it is not politically correct for
me to castigate heterosexual men; but I am going to go out on
a limb and do this anyway.) It is now the turn of homosexual men.
They, too, are disgusting creatures. (I’m going to be run out
of town on a rail for saying that, but the truth is the truth;
I cannot tell a lie). They arbitrarily and unconscionably eliminate
half the human race as potential love-bed partners. (Do you think
I’m being too repetitive here?) If that is not prejudice, then
nothing is. And the same goes for homosexual women. They, too,
are disgusting creatures. (I can’t anymore be run out of town
on a rail for saying that, since this departure of mine has already
been imposed on me). They, too, arbitrarily and unconscionably
eliminate half the human race as potential love-bed partners.
If that is not prejudice, then nothing is.
are we? I lost my train of thought. Oh, yes. It is only bisexuals
who do NOT arbitrarily and unconscionably eliminate half the human
race as potential love-bed partners. They do not prejudicially
ignore anyone; they will consider all people. Long live bisexuality.
All "progressives" ought to embrace this life style
choice, if they want to stick to their principles. But wait! Bisexuals,
too, as it turns out, are disgusting creatures. They, as does
everyone else mentioned above, I think I’ve been exhaustive but
I’m really not sure, are also discriminators. They don’t eliminate
half the human race as potential love-bed partners, but hear this:
Bisexuals (remember, they are disgusting creatures) favor beauty
("lookism"), intelligence ("IQism"), compatibility
("compatibilityism"), age ("ageism"), and
a whole host of other qualities. Bisexuals, like everyone else,
disgust me, progressive that I am.
"pussy libertarianism" come into play? Ann Coulter accused
libertarians of this character flaw, because, she said, among
other things, we refuse to apply our philosophy to racial and
sexual discrimination. We limit our views to pussy issues such
as imperialism and drug legalization. This, of course, is an outright
lie; but it sure got press coverage. But, it does seem to apply
to those such as Chris Selley who refuse to apply libertarianism
to these hot button issues.
Am I being
unfair to Chris Selley? I honestly don’t know for sure, but I
expect I am not. That nasty remark about "Woolworth’s lunch
counter" seems to indicate he does not fully accept the libertarian
view on free association and racial discrimination. But the point
is, he is not at all very clear on this, as in the case of his
colleague George Jonas. Perhaps in a future column Mr. Selley
will clarify this matter.
do not be such a pussy. Embrace your inner libertarianism. Let
it come out of the closet.