Big Head Press

L. Neil Smith's
Number 599, December 12, 2010

"Establishment Republicans are the mortal
enemies of individual liberty and free
enterprise as much as any Democrat"

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by L. Neil Smith

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Attribute to The Libertarian Enterprise

In a bizarre and historical twist of fate, conservatives today are finding themselves in a state of open rebellion against established authority, and it is becoming embarrassingly obvious that they don't have the faintest glimmer of how to handle this conflict between their fundamental nature and what is necessary if the American culture is to survive.

Nowhere is this clearer than in the case of Manning, Assange, and Wikileaks.

It was a truly sad and stupid thing to have to watch Sarah Palin denouncing Assange and all his works from some podium somewhere the other day. She appears to have no clue that, whatever his personal motives (and unlike other columnists and radio pundits who are given to remote psychoanalysis, I claim no knowledge about that), he is on her side against the elites in both parties who erroneously believe they own us. Nor does she understand that Wikileaks may have just made it vastly likelier that her son will come back home, on his feet and breathing.

Conservatives always blather on about "our boys" whom they have nevertheless selected to send, (as Tom Lehrer put it in one of his songs) to "fight and bleed and kill and die" in every miserable disease-ridden, parasite-infested boghole and sandlot on this world. Likewise, conservatives simply adore the police—more of "our boys", I presume—and are absolutely, positively confident that they're our friends and can do no wrong. Which is why I often refer to them as "copsuckers".

Now the copsuckers are upset about Assange because he's shown them that their "boys"—and especially the draft-dodging desk jockeys who direct their movements across the face of the planet—may not be on quite as heroic an enterprise as they have persuaded themselves to believe. Don't expect them to love Manning, Assange, and Wikileaks for that.

But would they really rather not have known?

Conservatives claim, above all, to be "strict constructionists", and quote Jefferson that government must be bound down by "the chains of the Constitution". But what part of the Constitution bestows upon government a "just power" to engage the flower of its youth in endless foreign wars, and to keep secrets from the very populace which is supposed to direct its course? And how can the populace direct the course of government when the information necessary to do it is kept secret?

Leakers of government information—whistle blowers, as they are called whenever they are temporarily in political favor—ripped the facade off the Vietnam War. That may still be an unpopular thing to have done among conservatives, but it was unquestionably the right thing to do. The war was based on a blatant lie. It was maintained by countless other lies for years. Conservatives unwilling to accept this analysis should reexamine what they believe in the harsh light of the Constitution they pretend to exalt, since there was scarcely a tenet of what the Founding Fathers believed that wasn't utterly destroyed in Vietnam.

Vietnam was also another pathetic example of a totally pointless war being started by liberals—who have no regard whatever for the Constitution—and then being stupidly embraced and defended by conservatives.

But once again, I have digressed.

Another thing conservatives need to ponder is their near unanimous approval, their downright glee, in fact, when certain other government documents—the "private" e-mails of the perpetrators of the Global Warming hoax—were released to the media. Although the corpse of Global Warming is still wiggling, those leaks drove a stake through its heart, and what conservative is going to declare that to be a bad thing?

If Wikileaks is guilty of anything it is that they have exposed the cynicism, hypocrisy, and incompetence with which American affairs are conducted overseas by overly glamorized slugs unfit to manage a sanitation district here at home. Wikileaks has brought us close to shutting down two wars being fought in the middle east, and ending U.S. imperialistic adventurism (two words I thought I'd never use) forever.

It may also have ended the political career of Hillary Clinton, an achievement worthy of a Nobel Prize, or of some other award, of actual value.

Wikileaks will have made it even easier for the Republicans to humiliate Barack Obama in 2012, and I'm certain they would be cheering and putting Assange up on a pedestal with laurel leaves about his temples, if the truths he and his cohorts exposed didn't interfere so badly with a purposeless and futile attempt to rehabilitate George W. Bush, the man who disdained the Bill of Rights as "just a piece of paper".

Exactly as Herbert Hoover was to Franklin Delano Roosevelt—there wasn't a single soul-crushing, Constitution-shredding element of Roosevelt's New Deal that hadn't already been pioneered on a smaller scale by Hoover—so has George Bush been to Barack Obama, whose police state policies find roots in the same Republican administration that gave us the dual Patriot Acts and the Department of Homeland Security.

In the light of all these factors, it's essential for everyone to remember that it wasn't the Republicans who won the 2010 elections, but the tea parties, a spontaneous, leaderless, centerless uprising of "We the People", as fed up with the invasive and intrusive policies set forth by the Republicans as they are with those set forth by the Democrats.

Establishment Republicans are the mortal enemies of individual liberty and free enterprise as much as any Democrat—in Congress, they've started compromising with the Democrats already—and if "We the People" win the Senate and the Presidency next time, it will not be owing to a political party we've had to drag along behind us like a corpse.

It's all part of remembering who your friends are.

Wikileaks is a friend of liberty.

Somebody tell Sarah.

Four-time Prometheus Award-winner L. Neil Smith has been called one of the world's foremost authorities on the ethics of self-defense. He is the author of more than 25 books, including The American Zone, Forge of the Elders, Pallas, The Probability Broach, Hope (with Aaron Zelman), and his collected articles and speeches, Lever Action, all of which may be purchased through his website "The Webley Page" at

Ceres, an exciting sequel to Neil's 1993 Ngu family novel Pallas is currently running as a free weekly serial at

Neil is presently at work on Ares, the middle volume of the epic Ngu Family Cycle, and on Where We Stand: Libertarian Policy in a Time of Crisis with his daughter, Rylla.

See stunning full-color graphic-novelizations of The Probability Broach and Roswell, Texas which feature the art of Scott Bieser at Dead-tree versions may be had through the publisher, or at where you will also find Phoenix Pick editions of some of Neil's earlier novels. Links to Neil's books at are on his website


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