Doldrums: a state of inactivity or stagnation; a dull, listless, depressed mood; low spirits.
My writing has slowed down a lot in the last few weeks. I will offer the least impactful reasons first, and then spend a few words on the most impactful.
By least impactful, I mean in terms of sustained damage. The real-world has made its presence felt in my life during the last few weeks – as it does from time to time throughout every year. Between a couple of personal things and an increased workload in the part of my life that puts food on the table…well, there you go. This has happened before, it will happen again. It will pass.
Also least impactful: I am reading two books, neither of which I find very worthy of writing extensive posts. But I feel I should finish the books – maybe get one post out of each one…or something.
The most impactful: let’s call it a mental Block – and I capitalize this purposefully. In looking back on the last few weeks, I can see that the slowdown began after writing the two posts on The Libertarian Case for Israel, co-authored by, among others, Walter Block (here and here).
Now – this struggle didn’t spring up from whole cloth. As regular readers know, I have butted heads with Block on some very important topics in libertarian theory and application to the real world: abortion, open borders and immigration, government-controlled land, etc.
First and foremost, I like Walter (to the extent one can know a person via email exchanges and online debates). He engages more than any other with whom I have had disagreement – and remains civil while doing so (an example several others have failed to follow).
I have sometimes grown frustrated with his replies. At least from my perspective: not dealing with the key points, accepting the proposition but dismissing it by saying “you take it too far” (as if that’s a libertarian argument – and is if Walter doesn’t take almost everything too far!), forgetting where we left the conversation and returning to points that I have already countered. Further, Block – while maintaining that he is culturally conservative – writes in the most left-libertarian tradition (see his Defendable series).
My struggle began, I think with Walter’s comment of libertarianism as the one true faith. I chewed on this for a month before writing about it. Libertarianism is a faith in…nothing (and I do not mean that disparagingly – but I guess I do if one believes it to be the one true faith).
But it was this exchange regarding Israel that seems to have finally sent me akilter. A couple of examples:
Much of the land currently under dispute was homesteaded by Jews before the territory was even called “Palestine,” when it was in fact called “Judea”. …if modern day Jews can prove descent from the original Jewish homesteaders, which we demonstrate they can both culturally and genetically…
Why are we departing from strict libertarian principles at this point? We do so in order to insert ourselves into the “mainstream” discussion that takes place in the United Nations, in negotiations between various countries, etc.
I won’t write more about this now – if you are interested and have not previously read my thoughts on these whoppers (and more), click the links.
I thought it couldn’t get worse. But it got worse. I won’t cite Block’s words, but mine in response:
This is troubling; I don’t know how else to say it. Walter – knowing that the immigrants bring with them a liberty-destroying philosophy into a land that embraces an equal right to influence government – is willing to allow liberty-destroying immigrants the opportunity to further destroy his liberty – and mine.
I would rather not write a conclusion right now. This “conclusion” is what has me stuck. I don’t want to write it, but I am not sure I can avoid it.
Doldrums: a state of inactivity or stagnation; a dull, listless, depressed mood; low spirits. I may remain in the doldrums until I deal with this.