I Answered in a thread recently a question of how I became a Libertarian. What was such a simple question spanned into a complex answer that I thought Should stand on its own right.
I guess I could say I was always a moderate. However I Was sympathetic towards socialism. As a techy I always hated patent trolling and blamed this on big businesses feeling it was an issue with capitalism. It was only after hearing about how I should vote for Ron Paul for the millionth time on the web that I decided to do a simple Youtube search. I was Captivated and moved by him. He had a sincerity in his voice that I’ve not heard from any other politician. I’ve come to learn that I was only half right when it comes to issues such as patent trolling and that capitalism had nothing to do with it. Since then I’ve surpassed Ron Paul in my beliefs and currently view myself as a Voluntaryist/Anarchist, but I still hold Ron Paul as the most Influential person in my life as he has caused me to completely reshape my believes and how they effect my daily life. If it weren’t for him I would still be Sympathetic towards socialism and would have probably found myself supporting the zeitgeist movement.
This pushed me to move my major into something political. After taking an intro Politics class I really came out. I became the loudest speaker speaker in the class and managed to take over another groups constitution in our final project. This encouraged me to study economics in my free time as I saw it more worthy than Political Science. In doing so I’ve read all the big names from Friedman to Marx. This pushed me to change my major to general science with hopes of a B.A in econ. But after studying more economics It actually Made me decide the Smart move would be to move back into my STEM degree.
After It became apparent that Ron Paul wasn’t going to win the election I somehow managed to hear of Gary Johnson and the Libertarianism. While still holding as a Ron Paul supporter I slowly became a member of the Libertarian party. This is when I first heard of the NAP. This is something I saw as contradictory and never took that seriously. Soon after I started making excuses for how some authority does not violate the NAP and that some force is justified.
Since then I have been heavily persuaded by Stefan Molyneux on key issues which has made me more open to Anarchism as a serious philosophical view point which has pushed me to read/listen to other Anarchists/theoreticians like Rothbard, Tucker, ect.
After a Combination of reading and many nights of self reflection trying to understand what conditions justify force I came to a conclusion; None. I came to the same conclusion many others before me have, that the NAP is an Axiom and that any minimal state no matter how small is by definition in violation of that Axiom.
There is a bit of truth in the old joke “What’s the difference between a minarchist and an anarchist? Six months”
So What Pulled You into the Liberty Movement?