Sunday, August 24, 2008

Libertarian Party embraces language nationalism.

Some bureaucrat at the Libertarian Party office has put out an email attacking Obama's vice presidential choice, Joe Biden. Of course, Biden is a politician and an advocate of big government, most the time, so there is much to criticize.

What is interesting is that apparently this LP functionary thinks that one reason to attack Biden is that he "voted against making English the official language of the United States." Since when did the LP demand that government impose an "official" language? Is this part of the rebranding of the LP so it can appeal to racists and bigots in the Minutemen? I know the party is rapidly becoming conservative, and throwing out libertarian principles as fast as they can, but this was a new one to me.

Instead of asking government to stay out of people's affairs this is asking them to come into it. There is no need to have the state involved in language at all. Here is what I find hilarious. Half the morons pushing English as the official language are barely literate in it themselves. Go to one of the Right-wing rallies of "good ol' boys" and you will hear them mangling the language in the worst way. These are the types who love words that don't exist -- like "ain't". And they don't use it for effect, they use it all the time. Or they indulge in double negatives such as: "We aint' got to let no Mexicans take our jobs."

If they actually picked up a pen, or a keyboard, their written English would even be worse. But then they don't pick up pens. And the only time they use keyboards is looking up sports results and porn. But apparently this ignorant mass of nationalistic bigots is part of the LP's new target audience. Pity liberty if the Libertarians ever gain power.

A friend has said to me: "Power corrupts. And the Libertarian Party today proves that even the mere whiff of power corrupts."

I just don't fit in the Libertarian Party anymore. See, I'm still a libertarian, though the way the movement is going, I'm not sure why I bother. And I still prefer to sleep on my sheets instead of wearing them.

Now, if English is the "official" language, does this mean we will have a government agency approving words? My take on "official" languages is that they often reflect a nation in decline. The French are particularly rabid about having French as their "official" language. Of course, once that is done then you have to police language along the way lest non-official words start to creep into the culture. The French do that. They ban English words that are adopted or prevent shops from posting signs in any language but French.

Once the language is "official" then the camel's nose pushes further into the tent. So they start making demands on policing language in order to make sure that English is protected. This is the way other countries have gone when they embraced language nationalism.

I just never thought I would see this sort of nonsense proposed by the Libertarian Party. But then the LP has surprised me quite a bit lately. I just wish they'd abolish their dishonest slogan about being "the party of principle." They are the party of second-rate and third-rate politicians who think abandoning principle will give them power. But for what purpose do they seek office? It sure as hell isn't to promote liberty anymore.

I know they protest loudly that they are still advocating freedom. But when pushed they merely compare themselves to the authoritarians they oppose. In the end they think that because they aren't as authoritarian as Obama or McCain they are doing just fine. They still talk about loving liberty all the time. But talk is cheap. And it was Oscar Wilde who warned:

Yet each man kills the thing he loves, By each let this be heard, Some do it with a bitter look, Some with a flattering word, The coward does it with a kiss, The brave man with a sword! Some kill their love when they are young, And some when they are old; Some strangle with the hands of Lust, Some with the hands of Gold: The kindest use a knife, because The dead so soon grow cold.