By L. Neil Smith
January 19, 2020 - I have always prided myself that I am a good judge of history and human nature. Yet it appears that I have underestimated the blind, irrational, bigoted, furious hatred out there for Donald J. Trump, and have had barrels of raw animal excrement figuratively dumped on my head simply because I voted for the man in 2016, have frequently celebrated him in my writings since then, and plan to vote for him again in 2020.
I had my reasons, about which I have not exactly been silent. Donald Trump is not perfect, and he is no libertarian, but he has taken us closer to the kind of society we libertarians have always claimed to desire than any of the generally weak, stupid, cowardly, short-sighted, self-contradictory Libertarian Party candidates ever have in my 56 years as a libertarian.
Bob Barr? Please.
I foolishly believed I had encouraged my readers to think more strategically. One individual on Facebook even asserted, strangely, that I had become a “Hamiltonian”, a fictional faction who, for the uninitiated, are the villains of my first novel, 1980’s groundbreaking The Probability Broach. This is just plain stupid, an insult intended to inflict pain. Like their namesake, the Hamiltonians detested individualism and individual liberty.
If anything, I am - and have always been - a neo-Imperialist. Those folks, you may recall, provided the heroic background of my 1984 novel Tom Paine Maru, batting around the galaxy in giant starships destroying governments. Now, class, who has done more to accomplish this? (Hint: it sure as hell wasn’t George H.W. Bush or William Jefferson Blythe Clinton.)
Recently, the flapdoodle has been all about the president’s highly sanitary disposal of Iran’s chief terrorist Qassem Suliemani.This is a character who, over the past two decades, has been responsible for (and proud of) the deaths of hundreds of Amerikans and thousand’s of other people, including many of his own countrymen. A technical question arises: was Suliemani a serial killer or a mass-murderer? It is the law - libertarian law - that nobody has a right to initiate force against another human being for any reason.
It was established among libertarian thinkers long ago (at least the early 1970s) that if you see somebody initiating force against somebody else, you have the same right to interfere that you would have if you were the victim. Suleimani was in the business of initiating force, mostly against helpless victims. His tinpot satrapy declared war on Amerikans, on Amerika, and on Western Civilization in general in 1979, calling us all kinds of nasty names, making all kinds of dire threats, committing all kinds of violent crimes. There can be no question whatever that exterminating this homicidal monster was ethical, moral, lawful, and made the world a better, cleaner place. I would gladly have pulled the trigger myself, which by no means makes me a Hamiltonian. The philosophical baseboard-vermin who cling to their Ernesto Che Guevara T-shirts and posters (Che was a serial murderer, too, and a rapist to boot) deserve a one-way ticket to Venezuela where their opinions might be appreciated.
What would you think of a President (like Clinton, Obama or either of the Georges) who had an opportunity to eradicate somebody like Suleimani and didn’t take it? There is a story that MI6 (Britain’s Secret Intelligence Service) saw a chance to assassinate Adolf Hitler in the 1930s (which would have saved 60,000,000 - sixty million - lives) but were waved off by their hoity-toity “superiors” because it would be considered “unsporting”.
As to Donald Trump, I am a novelist by trade, and, as such, an unflagging student of human character. I have watched Trump do hundreds of kindnesses that he needn’t have done. I have observed his wonderful family (the ultimate way, I believe, to assess somebody’s character), I have listened carefully to those who have worked closely beside him. Moreover (brace yourself), I share many of his goals, lowering taxes, reducing the bureaucracy, securing the border, getting rid of foreign aid, pulling out of places we don’t belong, and rebuilding the Navy (the most non-aggressive defense there can be). He doesn’t always succeed - after all, he’s got the Democrats, the media, half of his own political Party, and three quarters of the government against him. It’s amazing what he has accomplished nevertheless.)
Some hyperfastidious panty-waists disdain Trump’s “uncouth” manner. The man speaks straightforwardly, doesn’t pull any punches with anybody, communicates directly with the people who elected him, and may be the funniest president we’ve ever had. I grew up among genuine human beings who actually worked for a living. Donald Trump reminds me of them.
Another thing: politicians, pundits, wonks, and wanks of various stripes have accused Trump of all kinds of terrible crimes, but somehow the details are always lacking. The other day I heard some female collectivist bicycle loudly proclaim that he has told “thousands of lies”, without naming a single one. My first political awareness of Donald Trump was when he observed, immigration-wise, that the Mexican government wasn’t exactly sending us their best. I heard this deliberately misinterpreted as “All Mexicans are criminals”. This is racism?
I also heard him say (in what he innocently believed was a private conversation, years before his election) that some women will let you - clearly implying consent - “grab them by the pussy”. All right, he’s a construction guy, the “hardhat billionaire”. True, it’s locker-room talk, but it’s neither illegal, unconstitutional, nor particularly sexist.
Somehow, with each and every accusation against Trump, verbs and nouns seem to melt away mysteriously. Donald Trump’s real “crime” is that he has trashed socialism’s two hundred-year-old Utopian dream (sorry, John Lennon). Seeing as how socialism murdered two hundred million people in the 20th Century, Trump deserves a Nobel Peace Prize he’ll probably never get.
I have never stopped being a libertarian. I know it’s morally wrong to initiate force and that individuals must be absolutely free to own and operate their own lives. Name me a single politician, in 2016 or in 2020, who believes that: Hillary “Arkancide” Clinton? Joe “Gimme a Billion” Biden? Comrades Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, or the rest of their fetid, grabby, Marxist crowd, who salivate over stealing or destroying everything you ever earned? That brainless moron Gary Johnson or his bloviating gormless partner-in-crime William Weld, neither of whom would know what a real libertarian is if it stepped on their dicks?
Handing out advice has never gotten me anything I wanted, and not many pay attention to it. To my correspondents on Facebook who think they ever knew what I believe, I would say, if you don’t like things the way they are, do what I did. Take off your pajamas, pull up your big-boy pants, get out of your mother’s basement, and do something to push the Donald in a more libertarian direction. You can all write letters to the editor; you can all talk on the radio. Trump listens better than most. He’s getting some very bad advice - bump stocks, red flag laws, silencers - on Second Amendment issues, for example; and the political pressure on vaping is a big, stupid mistake. If you disagree with his regime, stand up and say so - they’re not telepathic - how will they know, otherwise?
Note: I could easily fix the Libertarian Party, virtually overnight - and guarantee that they would outpoll the Democrats (at least) from now until the sun burns out - but they’re afraid to listen to me and have been for half a century. Anyway, they can’t afford me any more. I’m old, and I’ll just vote for the Donald in 2020 - and if I live long enough, for Don Jr. in 2024.