What is postmodernism, really? And how does it relate to libertarian thought?
Thomas Szasz is a psychiatrist and author well known for his criticism of the modern psychiatry movement. He has consistently sought to apply classical liberal principles (such as bodily and mental self ownership) to social science and also explored the consequences of mandatory institutionalization of persons the state deemed to be insane. In his book, The Myth of Mental Illness (1960), Szasz claims that psychiatry ultimately robs people of the responsibility of being moral agents by obscuring the difference between socially unacceptable behavior and disease.
Thomas Szasz was an influential writer who opposed involuntary or coercive hospitalization for those deemed “mentally ill,” a label he challenged.
Personal freedom and personal responsibility go hand-in-hand. An over-reliance on the government due to the welfare state corrodes both.
One of the best-known writers of the 20th cent., Michel Foucault criticized overreaching authority structures as well as state and social coercion.
Libertarians are skeptical of some approaches to psychiatry especially when it involves government or when patients are coerced into accepting treatment.
“Art is revolution, and art can best serve revolution by remaining true to itself.”
On any given night, Americans everywhere now watch soft-core films or scenes on the television. “That ought to set the Birchers’ teeth on edge.”
“With the Alaska campaigns and…Gary Greenberg for governor in New York, the Clark campaign will be one of the most important Libertarian efforts in 1978.”
“I found that the Libertarian Party is not an historically isolated phenomenon but is, on the contrary, the landing place of a great cultural tradition.”
The great John Hospers surveys the most productive century in the history of ethics as a field of study.
“One ought to say bluntly that the neoconservatives themselves are part of the problem here.”
“Government tends to impose its authority by validating or invalidating an activity.”
Melville reflected literary Young America’s hopes that a culture of republicanism and democracy could serve all individuals.
“Isolationism is not a principle for free-market defense agencies because there would be no nation-State[s or] foreign policy for anyone to worry about.”
“In a world of cynics and pessimists, we are optimists: we believe that Liberty is a standard to which all can repair.”