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Monday, December 12, 2011

My Response to Walter Block's Hit Piece Against Wendy McElroy

For the record, here's my official Facebook status post on my wall serving as a response to Walter Block's hit piece aimed solely at libertarian/anarchist Wendy McElroy. The following is taken from my FB account in its unabridged entirety:

As much as I like Ron Paul tactically and not politically (I'm not an official financial supporter, although I did contact the Paul campaign and offer to volunteer my time and services to help him tactically), I think blogger and writer Walter Block's attack on libertarian/anarchist feminist Wendy McElroy is completely unfounded and uncalled for.

Wendy is right about Paul politically, but she's not the only person to have called Paul out on his anti-libertarian stands on a few issues such as abortion, immigration, religion, and antiwar if not authorized by the Constitution, and constitutional fetishism all on account of his status as a politician. (URL: I have called Ron out even though I have praised him during the debate (except for his "secure the border" rhetoric). I know Thomas L. Knapp has called him out in the past and still does to a certain extent. (URL: I know Stefan Molyneux has been critical of Paul in the past. I know Sheldon Richman criticized Paul over the old racist newsletter controversy that plagued the Paul campaign in 2007 and 2008, and he was completely spot-on regarding Paul allegedly being unaware of the letters (a claim which Richman didn't even buy at all). Even Jim Davidson has good reasons to oppose Paul's candidacy, simply because Paul supported a two-time bailout, prowar candidate named Lamar Smith over a libertarian Republican candidate who was more principled than Smith. Simply put I can't blame him for it.

With that in mind, because Block measures a libertarian's credentials simply by whether he supports his favored political candidate (who happens to be Ron Paul) and not by his ideology, will he attack me? Tom? Stefan? Sheldon? Anyone who dares to have a brain against him and the renewed deification of Paul (which seems to be happening already)?

I am so disappointed in Block that I truly question whether he is a libertarian nowadays or whether he's just a front for the GOP establishment, considering he no longer measures an individual's belief system solely on his ideology but rather whether he supports a candidate like Ron Paul. I totally resent and object to that game entirely.

Now that Block is trying to stir up bullshit in the movement with his claims against Wendy (who hasn't written about Paul in over four years now) and with anyone who doesn't agree with Paul (even if they're not neocons or progressives), he's merely doing more damage to the cause of Liberty and not helping it. That's my objection right there. Who the hell does he think he is just by doing this? Wendy has been an ardent defender of liberty for years and has never wavered since. For Block to stoop to that level the same way neoconservative Republican Eric Dondero has done is shameful, putrid, and disgusting. I'm embarrassed to have any association with him. I'll be more embarrassed to be in the same room with him. It's one thing to attack progressives and neocons who want Ron's head on the issues that he's right on. It's wrong to attack fellow libertarians who criticize and call out Ron on the issues that he's wrong on. Not only does that say more about Block, but it makes him politically and ideologically fair game, IMHO.

Not that I'm a fan of Kevin Carson or just his biggest fan, but he was right about the term "vulgar libertarian." Block fits that mold pretty damn well, and it shames me to say that.

What on earth was he thinking when he wrote that? Is he trying to push anyone out of the movement for not supporting Ron Paul for legitimate reasons? Is he off his rocker or what? Can someone please explain that rationale to me? I merely ask, because I don't get it.

Whether you agree or disagree with critics of Ron Paul is not the point and even neither here nor there. The point is that Block is not only off-base for making this libelous and accusatory charge against her, but he's also wrong to begin with. I will follow this up with this post and any updates to this commentary as well as my previous commentary on the subject.

Ron Paul Acolyte Walter Block Attacks Wendy McElroy

I was disheartened to see columnist and Loyola University Professor Walter Block's newly-launched tirade against renowned libertarian/anarchist individual feminist Wendy McElroy in his LRC piece today entitled "Is Wendy McElroy Still A Libertarian?: No; She Opposes the Ron Paul Candidacy." (It's a shame that Lew Rockwell himself has even allowed this putrid, disgusting, preposterous, and outrageous filth to be housed and archived on his popular website, let alone its own server.)

I encountered this putrid, disgusting, and outlandish drivel when fellow left-libertarian/agorist/voluntaryist Edgardo Peregrino posted this on his Facebook wall a few hours ago.

Edgardo posted the following with Block's article on his wall, which caught my eye instantly:

I hate to disappoint Dr. Block, but not everyone who opposes Ron Paul is a bloodthirsty neocon or progressive.

Since then his wall has been hit with a few comments which have been largely negative about Walter's hit piece:

Caleb McGinn As brilliant as Walter Block is he sure writes some stupid shit sometimes. Lew Rockwell probably wrote it for him.
2 hours ago · Like · 1
Edgardo Peregrino I'm a big fan of Dr. Block but sometimes I wonder what's going through his head when he writes shit like this.
2 hours ago · Like
Bryan Tint What about Patrick Buchanan?
2 hours ago · Like
Steve Lolyouwish Maybe not but they're certainly not helping.
2 hours ago · Like

Wendy has responded to her old friend Block's knee-jerk hit piece on her website with the following post:

Apparently the litmus test for being a libertarian is whether you support a particular political candidate or not. At least, that's the message of Walter Block's article today on Is Wendy McElroy Still a Libertarian? No; She Opposes the Ron Paul Candidacy. The attack is odd...for a few reasons. Just one of them is that I have not written of Ron Paul for over four years now. Indeed, I am ignoring almost everyone's political campaigning from now 'til November for the sake of my digestion. Ah well. Clearly, and especially from the last paragraph, Walter is trying to bait me into some sort of exchange. Alas, Walter, old friend, I am not a puppet and I do not jump to the jerk of a string.

UPDATE: My indefatigable husband just sent me a link from the past, a link to the 2007 blog post in which I responded to a similar article Walter wrote in a similar view years and years ago. I don't have anything to add. It is well-trodden territory.

(The article that Wendy wrote in response to Walter in a similar fashion some years ago over her August 1997 commentary titled "Ron Paul or" can be found here. Her commentary on the same piece before Block responded at that point can also be traced to here.)

I have responded to the entire affair on my Facebook wall in defense of McElroy, which I will post in a separate blog posting of my own. In another separate blog posting, I will be commenting on the entire matter, which will enable me to put my thoughts in correct order before I begin.

UPDATE (12-12-2011): A Facebook user identified as "Eric Lau" wrote a scathing attack on Wendy McElroy on Edgardo's post in which Block attacks her for opposing his campaign (while apologizing for and defending Ron Paul) in a pathetic, snarky attempt to discredit her:

Erik Lau What Wendy McElroy is writing about Ron Paul is ridiculous rant or outright lies. How can any libertarian accuse Ron Paul of not being a libertarian, but an enemy to freedom. She might really dislike most political action and especially from GOP but her factual opinion of Paul is savagely wrong - and that is very damaging.
about an hour ago · Like