Thin or Thick Libertarianism?

Dear Bionic:

Thanks for your kindly worded disagreement with me:

Mosquito, Bionic. 2019. “Walter is So Very Wrong.” June 7

Regarding my criticism of Hans’ view of excluding certain people from society. If friends can’t have a friendly disagreement, they aren’t friends. I hope and trust my friend Hans will take my gentle criticism of him in the same way that I take yours of me.

I don’t think you are correct.

Your main criticism, your only criticism as far as I can see, apart from the context issue, is that I should have included, in addition to condo associations, the following: “homeowners’ association, amusement park, hotel, larger community…” I would add, sports arena, football stadium, streets, or any other privately owned area where people gather. It was an oversight of mine to not include this, and I thank you for your correction.

Yes, of course you are right; Hans does speak in this very  context. But, I claim, mere context is not sufficient. He never should have said these non-conservative lifestyle people should be removed, excluded, from “society.” He should have explicitly said they should be removed, excluded, only from the private property of people who wish to separate themselves from those pursuing alternative lifestyles. Hans makes the same error in his new, otherwise magnificent book of his: Hoppe, Hans-Hermann. 2018. Getting Libertarianism Right. Auburn, AL: Mises Institute. I have just written a long review of this book. When it is published, I’ll share it, link to it, in this venue.

Instead, I think our disagreement, Sir Mosquito, is over this:

“Libertarianism is not sufficient for liberty.  Hoppe understands this, the son understands this.  Walter and the father do not.”

You elaborate on this here:

1707 = Mosquito, Bionic. 2018. “Is Libertarianism Sufficient for Liberty?” October 12;

You and Hans are thick libertarians. You both believe there is something more that is necessary for freedom, prosperity, happiness, indeed, for liberty, than, merely, the non-aggression principle and private property rights based on homesteading. I take the position that these two foundations of libertarianism are fully sufficient for the good society. Nothing more is needed. Any additions are not only superfluous, but detract from the brilliance of libertarianism.  In my next book in my Defending series, III, I will defend the front lawn fornicator, who engages in this act on his own private property, and yet greatly discomforts his neighbors. I demonstrate how private property rights and the NAP, alone, can fully address this strong challenge to thin libertarianism.

I think this is a crucially important debate for the future of libertarians. Are we to be thicksters or thinsters? I am delighted that I shall have brilliant libertarian theorists like you and Hans, among others, with whom we thinsters can try to resolve this matter. This debate will be for the soul of the libertarian philosophy we all love and revere.

Best regards,



1:15 pm on June 7, 2019