The progressives have long known that emergent social order represents a deeper and stronger force than any political order. Therefore the societal norms must never be left un-deconstructed. As profoundly Marxist, the Progressives “see” an underlying oppressor and oppressed in every single transaction; economic, or social, or criminal/justice. That is why they have invested so much into “deconstructing” the collective subconscious of our culture and society.
As a Libertarian Within Constitutional Bounds, like John Locke, I do not believe with Thomas Hobbes that The State Of Nature is necessarily a war of all against all, bloody, violent and brief (or however he put it). Locke, was more optimistic about human nature. (Hobbes was deeply shocked by the violence of the English Civil Wars.) John Locke believed that the state of nature would reveal self-emergent cooperative organized social activity. Therefore any Government to which we may delegate some part of our Rights must in the net be a benefit to us, and certainly not the opposite.
Point being that Governments are secondary, they are to the society as say, consciousness is to the deep unconscious. Therefore the Government is a subset of the greater set: the society. For The Government to reach up in the conceit that it might change the society of which it is a creation, is the essence of tyranny. The Nation has a government and not the reverse! For the State, the Government, to presume to legislate on matters of social structure is the hallmark of totalitarianism. Once that threshold is crossed, every single aspect of life is politicized. It is the end of civil society and the beginning of illiberal coercive Totalitarian rule.
We, the American people have opened Pandora’s Box by elevating certain Ends as justifying illiberal means. It was the Civil Rights Movement that was the End to which we sacrificed the ideal of Constitutional Government as a subset of Society, and The Nation. Though young at that time, I recall the segregationists’ argument that the right to choose with whom one wishes to associate was beyond the realm in which legitimate Government might legislate. The Right to dispose of one’s Private Property was the business of the owner and no other, unless his activity infringed upon another citizen’s Rights. All of these arguments were denounced as mere rhetoric to justify the resistance to the removal of odious Jim Crow Laws. (Similar to today’s automatic presumption by The Lamestream Media that to question Climate Change is merely a means to protect “Big Oil” and other financial interests.) As I think back to those days of the Civil Rights Movement, I recall, that even as a child, I noticed that the arguments of those objecting to limitations on the right to associate and the right to private property were never answered; only their motives were impugned. I am certain that many, maybe the majority of those who objected to the intrusion of Government into the private sphere were defending Jim Crow, and were “merely using” the rhetoric of Liberty to do so. Yet, logically, the motive of an argument says nothing about its truthfulness.
The Ends, ending Jim Crow in the south, justified the means. The Statists haven’t looked back since. The power that the State claimed it had to force lunch counters to serve any and every person, has now been turned on the question of how much salt may be used, or whether or not a menu must list the amounts of “trans” fats!
Once the state has that much power it of course becomes a matter of urgency to have a seat at that table. All the populists who believe that K Street Lobbyists are destroying our country are deceived. The Lobbyists are merely like yellow-jacks swarming around the honey pot. Corruption exists to the exact degree to which Government intrudes on the economic and social life of the people. The ultimate result is this, this thugocracy of Al Capone and Chicagobama! We allowed the Federal Government to dictate the limitations of the use of private property and dare to be surprised by the Federal Government setting up FEMA, Homeland Security, and all manner of potential coercive powers to be used against The People.
Now, to the matter of Gay Marriage, and Polygamy. These “life-style” choices appear to be a libertarian issue. But, they are not. Tactically they are being used to deligitamatize the concept of Government being a product of the society-at-large. The spontaneous self-emergent social-organization is being cast as that which is unsupervised by the Government. Instead of Civil Society in which the default is set to Liberty, and is supreme everywhere except in specific areas to which the Government is given authority by the people in order to improve their lives; we have created the monstrous reverse. Leviathan is now everywhere supreme except for the smaller and smaller islands in which it is “limited” under certain circumstances, often requiring licenses, and fees. Only Leviathan can change the definitions of words. Only Leviathan can dare to attempt a complete “transformation” of its subjects’ lives (Leviathan has subjects, not citizens.)
The Power to define marriage is not found in Legitimate Government. Marriage, is an institution that predates the United States Of America, its Constitution, and its authority. King Canute proved that not even as great a Monarch as he could stop the rise and fall of the tide. The Government has the right to define marriage, as it has the right to make day follow night. Even a democratic government can not vote “up” to be “down”. That, however is a utilitarian argument. I do not like utilitarian arguments. Say, the USA did have the power to change the rotation of the Earth it could then decide to change the days and the nights!
The Idealistic Argument is the moral one. And that is: the power of the government is derived from that which the people have delegated it, in order to improve their lives by creating an even playing field, protection from violence or threat of such, enforcement of contracts, common defense and similar delineated roles. Its powers being derived, and not inherent to itself, The Government has no legitimate role in changing the society to which it owes its legitimacy. Thus, it cannot change the definition of marriage!
If polygamous consenting adults wish to play house, that is within their liberty to do so. It is not in their power, nor therefore in the government’s power to force the people into accepting that status as one of Marriage. Same with Gay couples. It is just politeness to not ask, and it is proper respect to the community at large to not flaunt it.
It is not the Libertarianism I believe in, that would force citizens to accept different definitions of traditional family life. Go, do what you wish. Let the LORD judge! But do not demand that the power of the United States Of America be put at your disposal to make your lifestyle socially acceptable. And to have to deal with the utilitarian argument would be a nightmare! Why couldn’t “a family” consist of 100 men and 1000 women all in a state of marriage together? That would sure make family health insurance coverage a fatal cost on any company that offered it. And now companies must offer it! What about divorce? Would a vote of “the family” be required before one could leave it? No, our society has evolved into a monogamous one so long ago that polygamy can be discerned only in the mystic and mythic past. For whatever reason the society of Western Civilization has become globalized. Who is to say which aspect of its particularity caused it to overgrow and supplant all the others?