Big Head Press

L. Neil Smith's
Number 633, August 21, 2011

"Country folks are different than city folks."

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Dispatches From Libertopia
by Kent McManigal

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Attribute to L. Neil Smith's The Libertarian Enterprise

Over the years I have seen and heard a lot of people pointing out, not always unreasonably, that they are so tired of listening to libertarians complaining about why The State is wrong, but rarely suggesting how to "fix it".

L. Neil Smith has carried the water a long ways with his novels such as The Probability Broach. He has described a world I ache to live in and will never stop trying to make real.

I touched on this kind of thing with my little book Problem? Solved! However, I do think fiction has greater potential to influence people who aren't already working with us.

Recently I began my own small contribution to this effort in the form of a blog called Dispatches From Libertopia.

In it I pretend that the free society is a done deal. The era of The State is dead and gone. And I write from the perspective of someone living in this free society. Oddly, or not, my regular blog where I complain about the "what is" gets at least an order of magnitude more hits than my optimistic Libertopia blog. This may have lessons I am too dense to learn.

As a sample of what I am doing there I present "Staci's Abortion" from Dispatches From Libertopia:

Here in Libertopia abortion is, obviously, not prohibited. But the pro-life folks are ecstatic. How can that be? Because no longer does abortion "stop a beating heart".

My friend Staci discovered that she was pregnant a few weeks ago. After much deep thought and talking to friends she decided that the best thing for her, and for the fetus inside her, was to end her pregnancy- have an abortion. And, in her case, she got paid for it, too!

She went to the clinic and the fetus was removed (people don't quibble over the terms "fetus", "baby", "human", or "person" with regards to fetuses anymore, and the reason is that it doesn't matter anymore) and placed in an artificial womb, ready to be adopted by one of the thousands (probably more) of people wanting a baby.

In cases where there is severe malformation of the fetus, the best chance for it to have a life is an abortion. the fetus can be placed in an artificial womb and therapies can be tried to repair it. The amniotic fluid can be adjusted and infused with helpful genes and medications; surgery can be performed, and in some cases limb growth can be stimulated.

The fetus can either be left to develop fully in the artificial womb, or if the new parent is a woman, and she wants to, she can have the fetus transferred into her own body. A few people even pay to have the home version of the artificial womb installed in their home so they can watch the fetus develop without going to the abortion clinic. Fetuses are not any more attractive now than they have ever been, so: Ewww! But, whatever floats your boat.

Some clinics pay for fetuses, and some are strictly charity. I say if someone is willing to pay for what you are willing to sell you'd be silly to give it away... but this is Libertopia and as long as you don't attack, steal, or destroy other people's private property you can do what you want.

Anyway, Staci is fine (and has more gold in her vault) and her fetus has already been implanted in a loving mother. Everyone wins.

Kent McManigal publishes at

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