Roy A. Childs, Jr.

American libertarian essayist and critic

Roy Alan Childs, Jr. (January 4, 1949 – May 22, 1992) was an American libertarian essayist and critic.

Roy A. Childs, Jr.

QuotesEdit

  • The more complex the faculty of awareness or consciousness is in an organism, the more discriminations are possible to it, i.e., the more differentiating and integration between and of aspects of reality it is capable of engaging in.
    • Roy A. Childs, Jr., The Epistemological Basis of Anarchism: An Open Letter to Objectivists and Libertarians,” Part I, (1969); : Republished in: Roy A. Childs, Jr. Anarchism & Justice, Libertarianism.org Press, 2012.
  • The new anticapitalist are, in spirit and motive, deontologists, and thus criticized not so much the consequences of capitalism (though this teleological elements is present), but motives, e.g., the profit motive, acquisitiveness, ‘materialism’ and the like.
    • Roy A. Childs, Jr. “The Defense of Capitalism in Our Time,” Winning essay that was published in Free Enterprise: An Imperative, 1975 by the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library Association for the Garvey Foundation.
  • Now, state socialism, by objecting to one form of ownership, mainly the right of individual ownership over the means of production, in effect, placed the lives and liberty of all its citizens in the hands of a government clique and does this very simply because no liberty could be achieved in society. If the state apparatus alone has control over means of production like printing presses and the broadcast medium of the airwaves, this control of the means of production is a control over the ends that people in society can seek.
    • Roy A. Childs, Jr. “Property Rights/Civil Liberties: Two Sides of One Coin,” lecture presented at Stanford University for Cato Institute’s Summer Seminars on Political Economy (August 6, 1978). Reprinted in Liberty Against Power, San Francisco: CA, Fox & Wilkes (1994) p. 210

“Autarchy and the Statist Abyss,” 1968Edit

Roy A. Childs, Jr. “Autarchy and the Statist Abyss,” Rampart Journal of Individualist Thought, (Summer 1968), Vol. IV, No. 2

  • The choices allowed the people are artificial and superficial at best, and are always determined by the state itself.
  • Conservatives propose to oppose the growth of the state by supporting politicians. And what do politicians do? They support the growth of the state. Conservatives would have you believe that you can dehydrate a plant by watering it, or get rid of rats by feeding them.
  • And more: by rushing into politics, what principles are the conservatives abandoning, and which are they accepting? Voting and political action itself implies a sanctioning of the state, and hence of its basis — the rule of man by man. The conservatives would fight the principle by adopting it. They oppose the state — by sanctioning the entire governing process. What will be the result? The growth of the state.

“The Contradiction in Objectivism,” 1968Edit

Roy A. Childs, Jr. “The Contradiction in Objectivism,” Rampart Journal of Individualist Thought, (Spring 1968) Vol. IV, No. 1

  • Taxation is by definition legalized robbery. Clearly, it is initiated coercion. As such, no Objectivist can in good conscience support it. So, naturally, most of them don't. Ayn Rand, in her essay in The Virtue of Selfishness entitled "Government Financing in a Free Society," states emphatically that the financing of the state in a free society would be voluntary. But can it be?
  • The only logical attitude that any Objectivist should take toward the present government and constitution is one of uncompromising hostility. And since one does not sanction evil in any capacity, that means that every Objectivist should withdraw his sanction from the political establishment immediately and in every possible way.
  • Objectivism's philosophy of man begins with the fact that man is a being of volitional consciousness: man is the one animal who has to choose to be conscious, to use his mind. Man is a rational animal, and reason is his only guide to knowledge, reason being that faculty which identifies and integrates the material provided by man's senses.

“Big Business and the Rise of American Statism,” 1969Edit

Roy A. Childs, Jr. “Big Business and the Rise of American Statism,” Child’s speech at first convention of Society for Individual Liberty, held November 15-16, 1969. Reprinted in Liberty Against Power, San Francisco: CA, Fox & Wilkes (1994)

  • Determinism, in the strict sense, is self-contradictory. For if man’s mental processes—specifically, his attempts at reasoning—are not free, if they are determined by environment and heredity, then there is no means of claiming that theory x is true and y is false—since man can have no way of knowing that his mental processes might not be conditioned to force him to believe that x is logical, when in fact it is not.
    • p. 23
  • I should also mention, at least in passing, big businessmen not only had a particularly important effect in pushing through domestic regulation, but they fostered interventionism in foreign policy as well.
    • p. 36
  • Big business, then, was behind the existence and curriculum of the public educational system, explicitly to teach young minds to submit and obey, to pay homage to the ‘corporate liberal’ system which the politicians, a multitude of intellectuals and many big businessmen created.
    • p. 45
  • To a large degree it has been and remains big businessmen who are the fountainheads of American statism.
    • p. 45

“Objectivism and the State: An Open Letter to Ayn Rand,” 1969Edit

Roy A. Childs, Jr., “Objectivism and the State: An Open Letter to Ayn Rand,” The Rational Individualist, vol. 1, no. 10 (August 1969)

  • There is a battle shaping up in the world – a battle between the forces of archy – of statism, of political rule and authority – and its only alternative – anarchy, the absence of political rule. This battle is the necessary and logical consequence of the battle between individualism and collectivism, between liberty and the state, between freedom and slavery.
  • It is my contention that limited government is a floating abstraction which has never been concretized by anyone; that a limited government must either initiate force or cease being a government; that the very concept of limited government is an unsuccessful attempt to integrate two mutually contradictory elements: statism and voluntarism. Hence, if this can be shown, epistemological clarity and moral consistency demands the rejection of the institution of government totally, resulting in free market anarchism, or a purely voluntary society.
  • It is important to remember in this context that statism exists whenever there is a government which initiates force. The degree of statism, once the government has done so, is all that is in question. Once the principle of the initiation of force has been accepted, we have granted the premise of statists of all breeds, and the rest, as you have said so eloquently, is just a matter of time.

"The Epistemological Status of the Issue,” 1971-72Edit

Roy A. Childs, Jr. "The Epistemological Status of the Issue,” published serially in nine sections grouped into four parts in SIL’s The Individualist in 1971 and 1972: Republished in: Roy A. Childs, Jr. Anarchism & Justice, Libertarianism.org Press, 2012. Part I

  • What is anarchism, anyway? Anarchism is the doctrine (as theoretician Benjamin R. Tucker has stated it) that the State should be abolished, and that all the affairs of men should be handled by individuals or voluntary associations. Anarchism is thus the opposition to and denial of the legitimacy of a positive belief; namely, that the State is moral and necessary. It is alleged that anarchism is a need of man only in the sense that the absence of a specific disease is a need of man, or a precondition of health.
  • Since society is only a group of individuals interacting according to their various purposes and plans, society has no ‘good’ apart from that of the units of which it is composed.

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