New Libertarian Manifesto

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New Libertarian Manifesto is a libertarian philosophical treatise by Samuel Edward Konkin III. It is the first explanation of agorism, a philosophy created by Konkin. Konkin proffers various arguments of how a free society would function as well as examples of existing gray and black markets. It contains criticisms of using political (i.e. activist or legislative) or violent means, and advocates non-politics with non-voting as a strategy. Finally, Konkin describes the steps of using the black market to dismantle the state, a strategy known as counter-economics.

The work was first printed by Anarchosamisdat Press in October 1980, and subsequently by Koman Publishing Co. in February 1983 and by KoPubCo in 2006.[1] Konkin declared the book to be a "black market best-seller".[2]

Reception[edit]

Rothbard[edit]

The manifesto was criticized by philosopher Murray Rothbard. He found the manifesto's assertion that wage labor was undesirable or that it would disappear to be absurd, noting specifically the manufacturing industry as one that could not be handled economically by self-employed independent contractors due to transaction costs. Rothbard also pointed out that wage labor made it unnecessary for poor workers to purchase their own capital equipment; this could be left to the capitalists. Rothbard also viewed it as implausible that the black market could out-compete the white market at providing goods such as automobiles, steel, and cement that are less valuable and harder to conceal than jewels, gold, drugs, etc. Rothbard viewed the black market as being, in any case, ineffective at bringing down tyrannical regimes and perhaps even helpful in propping up otherwise economically unviable systems such as the Soviet Union's.[3] However, Rothbard did offer some praise, stating, "Konkin's writings are to be welcomed. Because we need a lot more polycentrism in the movement. Because he shakes up Patriarchs who tend to fall into unthinking complacency. And especially because he cares deeply about liberty and can read-and-write, qualities which seem to be going out of style in the libertarian movement."[1] Konkin wrote a reply to Rothbard's critique.[4]

Others[edit]

Libertarian Robert LeFevre hailed the work "for its position respecting consistency, objective and method" and claimed that "it will have and deserves to have a compelling influences upon members of the 'old' left."[1]

References[edit]

Further reading[edit]

  • Rothbard, Murray. Strategy of the New Libertarian Alliance, Number One, May Day 1981, 3–11; reprinted as “The Anti-Party Mentality” in Libertarian Vanguard, Aug.-Sep. 1981.

External links[edit]