Questioning nationalist language and "self"-determination (Was: Re: San Francisco Libertarian Political Chat tonight)

In a message dated 10/23/03 10:03:56 AM, sfdreamer@... writes:

<< Michael,

    Did you see my recent post about distinguishing people from
governments? Just wondering, since like the author of the email I was
responding to, you refer to the United States government as "we." Do
you believe that we (the people on this list, or LP members, or
libertarians, or people under the jurisdiction of the U.S. government,
*are* the U.S. government? >>

Starchild, I did not see the post you are referring to, I think I miss a lot
of posts based on the few that come thru and the response that are CC'd being
completely new to me. I liked the old LP server more than Yahoo....anyway.

When I say "us" or "we" i mean it in the collective sense of being an
American. Our government represents all of us whether we like it or not. We do live
in a real country with elected representatives, yes even those of us on this
list. I'm not sure if I answered your question, I wish I saw your original post.
Feel free to elaborate.

Live free or die, Michael S.

Michael R. Sawyer
Trade Printing
1761 Kelly Street
San Mateo, CA 94403
ph: 650-286-0970
fax: 650-286-1980


  Sorry to hear that you are missing some of the posts sent to the list; that seems very odd. I hope that someone more tech-savvy than myself can figure out why this is happening if you don't manage to solve the problem yourself.

  The earlier post I was referring to is copied below. To further elaborate -- it's difficult (impossible?) to speak about life without using a frame of reference. But I feel that a national frame of reference is just about the worst one we could choose. Why? Because communicating in a particular frame of reference will strengthen that worldview in people's minds.

  Given that the worst problems in the world are due to the actions of national governments, the last thing we ought to be doing is using a nationalist frame of reference that reinforces their hegemony. Nationalism is the lifeblood of national governments. Without the sense of allegiance that "their" peoples tend to feel toward them, what power would they possess?

  Libertarianism also holds that if such things as rights exist, they exist universally, i.e. we do not believe that rights are created by governments. If they exist, they must exist naturally in each of us. But the nationalist (as opposed to a globalist or universalist) frame of reference undermines this view of the inherent and universal nature of rights, and suggest that what rights you have ought to be a function of which government's jurisdiction you fall under.

Yours in liberty,
              <<< Starchild >>>

The most likely reason I can think of is that a spam filter takes out some of the posts for MIchael. It may even be done by his ISP without any way for him to change it.

If you suspect you have missed some posts, you can always check the message archive on the web site:

Finally, as a moderator, you can check on bounced messages under the member tab. The URL is probably