vrijdag 11 maart 2011

Withur We

Withur We is een libertarisch boek dat absoluut fantastisch is. Hier enkele delen van mijn review - degene die geen spoilers bevatten; dus maak u geen zorgen. Er is overigens ook een youtube trailer van het boek - moderne tijd; Got to love it.


I especially liked in the first part the intellectual struggle between the revolutionaries; making clear that 'wanting change' is not the same as 'wanting freedom'. The debates between Mike, Alasdair, Johnny and Oliver where very interesting and felt real. Like: yes, a revolution is not enough. I liked how things developed in the first part; very recognizable and real.


But the philosophical discussions - especially the ones regarding the Nozickean argument of the origin of the state - where very, very good. And the fact that they were ingrained in a story - and thus not _merely_ philosophical arguments really made sure the ideas I hold dear come to live in as a real sense as they are bound to come.

I'm not sure though if a non-libertarian would feel as excited as me. And maybe a non-libertarian wouldn't get the revelance of all the philosophical debates; allthough you do an excellent, excellent job in presenting them. I'm pretty confident I'll be copy/pasting some of those discussions as arguments in the future if I don't feel like making the same argument myself - e.g. the part on the illegalization of prostitution.


Also; it's probably been said before. But the book is a real pageturner. Maybe not all the time, but certainly a lot of the time. It's like Dan Brown meets Rothbard meets George Orwell; 3 writers who are good at what they do.


One technical point I want to make, though. One important thing and a mistake a lot of writers often make is that all the 'side persons' are copy/pastes with no real personality. I think you have thoroughly succeeded in given most if not all of the characters in the book their own life, personality and imput. They are not idling standing by when the story happens with the 'good' and the 'bad' guys; they are complex figures who change, based on feelings of power, morals, sentiments and so much more. They were humans, not characters. (...)

Another point - which I think is neither positive nor negative - is the fact that, unlike 1984 and Brave New World, your book is not only anti-totalitarian government (that, by the way, even is democratic; which I liked) but offers an idea, an alternative. And as we all know; 'an idea, mr Creedy, is bulletproof'. That might make some non-libertarians not regard the book as highly as I do, but within the libertarian world; I know of no reason why any libertarian shouldn't read this book. Preaching to the choir is often considered as a negative; but I know of no successful organization or movement that didn't participate in widespread 'preaching to the choir'. This is a an exciting new way of doing so - it doesn't always have to be Human Action. Maybe it won't become a classic as Atlas Shrugged; but, as I said before, I never asked 'who is Joh Galt', but I do wonder: where is Alisdair Ashley?

On a personal note; sometimes I wonder why I care. Why not just retreat into academia or whatever and _just_ try to make my own life worthwhile. This book convinced me that there is actually something worth in trying to improve the world, even though people will piss on your ideas. That doing good, because you are doing good, is doing well. And that's something I needed. If for no other reason; that's why I'm liking this book.

Check ook de positieve reviews op Amazon! Edit: deze 'review' is gewoon op het Mises forum gepost in een thread. Dus geen gepubliceerde review ofzo. 'k wou gewoon de nieuwsgierigheid wat prikkelen omdat het echt een goed boek is.

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