Friday, March 02, 2007

Livingston and "Involuntary Subordination" / Di Lorenzo

This weekend I will try to do more reviews of Livingston's writing.

These are some quotes from Donald Livingston's article, "Decentralists or D.C. Centralists: Overthrowing the Tyranny of Liberalism," pages 16-18, April 1999, Chronicles magazine, published by the Rockford Institute,

"A culture links generations together and is structured not by autonomy but by involuntary subordination and deference to authority." [Page 17]

"Since all forms of Enlightenment theorizing are hostile to the idea of involuntary subordination, they either ignore the priority of culture to autonomy or, in more radical forms, positively deny it." [Page 17]

"The ideal of individual autonomy as the end of the state, if consistently pursued, drives out culture because it drives out all forms of involuntary subordination and, consequently, undermines a valuable way of life." [Page 17]

Livingston is hostile to the 18th century Enlightenment and to the idea of the individual having rights. There are a series of articles which I hope to go through. For example, Jan 2007, pages 14-17, "The Declaration of Independence and Philosophic Superstitions," which is an attach on the idea that The Declaration of Independence is a document of "natural rights."

In both articles Livingston sees the solution to the problem of the lack of "involuntary subordination" and what he sees is a problem of the belief in "natural rights" through decentralization or the break up of large states into small ones. As Livingston states in his April 1999 article:

"The concentration has been ligitimated by an ideology of maximizing autonomy and destroying those substantial moral communities whose structures of involuntary subordination are offensive to liberalism."

Just remember that in an Second Vermont Republic there will be no appeals to the U.S. Supreme Court regarding some form of "involuntary subordination" the Livingston and company might dream up. Though Vermont being landlocked and small and mountainous, I think there will be good opportunities to make a run for the border.


DiLorenzo is a contributor to and his contributions can be accessed at this page.

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