Curly Capitalist Question 18 Libertarianism, Health and the Environment

Squirrel asked

I’m very much left leaning yet i dislike the school system, i also have no philosophical problems with the private sector taking over many services that the government now provides, as long as its fair. I also realise that people willingly help each other and that a government is not always needed to get things done.

I just want to hear how a libertarian society would work in practice for example how would act work to protect the environment if it got in. And how would act provide health care to those who earn too little to be able to afford private health care (even if tax was abolished)

Squirrel, ACT is not a libertarian party, it is libertarian leaning, with elements of conservatism and social democracy. However, generally speaking, ACT works to preserve the environment by extending private property rights to the maximum.

Contrary to socialist propaganda, private owners make the best stewards of land, water and other natural resources.

There is a big philosophic difference between libertarians and green/socialists when it comes to environmentalism.

Socialists tend to have a ration book mentality. They are pessimistic, resources are running out, peak oil is looming, disaster is around the corner.

Libertarians are optimists. The universe has materials and energy in abundance. Man’s role is to use his intelligence to best utilise those resources to create wealth and choice for himself and others.

There are no shortage of resources, only unnecessary (usually government imposed) restrictions on the use of intelligence and the creative talents.

That’s why libertarians care immensely about personal liberty and worry very little about global warming, peak oil, ozone holes or falling skies.

It is not that environmental problems don’t concern us, they certainly do. It is simply that we realise that if human liberty is guaranteed, free minds can solve damn near any problem.

Health care for the poor is in principle, quite easily solved. In a free society, health care would be treated like any other service.

As a sound body a healthy mind are highly desirable, there is a huge and lucrative market for anyone who can solve problems in those areas.

Therefore more talented people would tend to go into the medicinal sciences. Doctors would be like lawyers are now. There would be one on every block. When did you last hear of a shortage of lawyers?

With less controls on drug manufacture, medicines would be far cheaper and more effective. Non “conventional” treatment methods and medicines would also flourish.

Medicines would become cheaper, freer and far more diverse. The range of services would dramatically increase.

I accept that even in this environment, a very few would either be unable to afford medical insurance, or would be incorrigibly irresponsible.

For this tiny few, charity would be the most common option.

Free people are benevolent people. Affluent people are generous people.

Charity and charity hospitals would flourish in a free society.

In 19th century England, it was considered the norm, it was indeed expected for doctors and surgeons to work part of every week gratis in charity hospitals. It was simply the done thing to do.

What killed that? The welfare state did. Welfarism kills people’s sense of responsibility towards others. Why should you help your neighbour when the government already taxes you to keep the bugger in beer and fags?

Islamic countries have little if any social welfare. They do however have huge numbers of private charities and charity hospitals.

If the government doesn’t do it, the people will and they will do it better.

Guaranteed.

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4 thoughts on “Curly Capitalist Question 18 Libertarianism, Health and the Environment

  1. Using technology and human ingenuity as an excuse to let those owning property do whatever they want is a rather pathetic excuse. You have consistently failed to adequatly explain how the environment or the poor would be protected under a libertarian system.

    In a fragmented society such as ours with profit as the main motivation the environment will never be safe. I do think communitys – especially those that rely on the land are best placed to manage their surroundings, I just dont think individuals or corporations whose main motivation is profit are.

  2. Also can you provide evidence (ideally peer reviewed or scientifically defensible) which proves that “private owners make the best stewards of land, water and other natural resources.”) I dont partocularly care for russian oil spills as examples of this fact.

    As for the privitisation makes things cheaper arguiment this has not been the case with water in canada or bolivia. And the fact that many poor cannot get adequate legal representation is rather worrying.

    You seem to push privitisation and then expect so called commie volunteer organisations to pick up the pieces.

  3. Simple question anon. Would you look after your tooth brush better if were owned by you or by a community trust?

    Many on the left misunderstand capitalism. They see money as the only motivator.

    In a free society people may be motivated by all sorts of ideas, including the charitable.

    Charitable and non profit civil institutions flourish in free societies and die out when socialist ideas dominate.

    I would hardly call the Sallies, Alcoholics Anon, St Johns, Rotary or the the Girl Guides, “commie volunteer organisations” anon.

  4. Yup if i only cared about money I would look after my tooth brush but i would probably strip mine sensitive areas and clear fell native forests. Can you please give me some proof or as you as bad as the socialists that just say everything will be better under socialism and not back this up with anything.

    You do seem to attack anyone working on the behalf of poor that you disagree with as socialists or commies.

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