Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Grand Unified Theory of Libertarianism

I got into a discussion over at reddit about libertarianism (I know, I know. Bad idea.) I casually mentioned that I had my own theory of why techies seem so enamored of libertarianism if anyone was interested.

Someone took me up on it. So, here it is.

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I'm a techie. I've been a techie since the 70s. I was a techie while going through puberty. I have seen a lot of other techies go through puberty. One thing I have seen recur over and over among techies going through puberty is an attempt by said techies to come up with a technical explanation for why they can't get laid. This usually involves asking, "Why are girls so irrational?" and, "Why don't girls want to f*ck a guy who is smart enough to see how irrational they are?" The great success of this strategy often leads to some grand unified theory of the universe that blames it all on the fact that the world doesn't work the way their computers do (push button A, get result B) and that wouldn't the world be so much better if it just followed some really simple rules?

Of course, the world doesn't follow simple rules (or, at least not the ones they come up with), so this produces two results: either (1) they grow up, let their hormones relax and eventually they do meet someone nice and they get laid, or (2) they develop an even larger grand unified theory of why the world is fucked up and how it would be better if everyone just did what I think it should do and oh god why can't I get laid?

Actually, a lot of people fall into this trap, not just techies. For instance, I suspect that much of the rise of the Islamist movement in the Middle East can be blamed on the fact that none of the girls would dance with Sayyid Qutb in college.

While Qutb went on to create grand unified theories based on passages from the Koran, a lot of techies often end up creating theories, like libertarianism, that gives them the cold comfort of believing that, if people just acted the way they think they should, then everything would work out great, everyone would be rich and they could get laid.

Okay, it's not all because they couldn't get laid. I'm sure there are plenty of libertarians who have plenty of success with the ladies. This is, naturally, a simplified explanation of my own grand unified theory of why a bunch of hapless dudes spend so much time sitting around creating grand unified theories. The truth is I think grand unified theories of any variety suck and advocates for them should just go away and leave me alone.

And yes, I'm married, have two children and am quite content.

Of course, I'm not a libertarian.

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