Much ado has been made recently in the left wing of the “liberty movement” over the fact that men are its predominant constituents. Much speculation has been devoted to how women might be sold on the virtues of freedom and liberty, thus cleansing libertarianism of the stain of inequality that has long befouled its name.
Unlike “libertarian feminists” or even regular libertarians, I think women are absolutely right to hate freedom. There are reasons they do, and those reasons have served them well. Women’s sensibilities are wholly appropriate; to women. They just shouldn’t, under any circumstances, be given the power to impose them on men. As the old cliche goes, what’s good for the goose isn’t necessarily good for the gander, and vice versa.
Freedom is dangerous and uncertain. If you’re a man, you’re going to be much more tolerant of danger and uncertainty than most women because you can afford to be, and you can’t afford not to be. Women are just the opposite. The very existence of male and female, is –in part– an evolved risk management strategy. Men take most of the risks, women reap most of the rewards. The losers, mostly men, take their bad luck to an early grave. Meanwhile, humanity just keeps on keeping on, oblivious to their sacrifice. Whine about the unfairness all you want, this works. All is as it should be, plaintive protests of feminists and MRAs notwithstanding.
As individuals, men can afford to spend decades learning how not to be fuck ups and acquiring marketable skills. Women can’t. As a group, men can afford to unceremoniously abandon the hopeless cases who never learn. Women can’t. Men need a certain amount of freedom to really thrive, but it comes with great downside risks.
This is also more or less what happens when you give men freedom. But for men, fucking around until you’re 33 before finally getting your life straightened out is a victory. For women such a victory would be Pyrrhic at best, if not an outright defeat. More than half of a woman’s child bearing years are gone at that point, and all of the best ones.
Liberty is not best for women. The comfort and security that is best for women is not best for men. The natural compromise has been to give men the freedom to rule women; providing them the guidance and protection they desire and require. When “libertarian feminists” talk about how to sell women on liberty, they’re missing the point. Even if it were possible that’s not to say it would be best.
Libertarians often object when others propose “one size fits all” solutions, imposed top-down. Yet they’re never slow to offer liberty as a one-size-fits all solution. Reality is somewhat more complex. Some people can benefit from freedom, and a certain amount of it is undeniably necessary, or very bad things happen. But it’s neither universally desirable nor beneficial.