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Julian Assange, Libertarian ‘Reactionary’?

Posted on | December 29, 2010 | 12 Comments

Donald Douglas has another link-heavy roundup about the Julian Assange rape case, including a link to leftist blogger Bill Weinberg’s post called, “Enough with the Julian Assange hero worship”:

The most blatantly irritating thing is abject demonization of the women who have made the charges of sexual abuse against Assange. In any other context, the summary dismissal of a woman’s rape accusations would be seen as utterly politically incorrect. But Assange gets away with anti-feminist rhetoric that would do Rush Limbaugh proud.

See what he did there? Weinberg (who loves the anti-American aspect of WikiLeaks) does the Signifying Jive by comparing Assange to the hated Limbaugh. Weinberg also disses the suddenly unfashionable Naomi Wolf and otherwise puts himself on the side of the angels in the interminable “Was it rape-rape?” argument.

Tempting as it would be to engage Weinberg about the “abject demonization” of Assange’s accusers, however, my attention was instead riveted by what Weinberg calls “reactionary” statements Assange made in a Time magazine interview:

“The United States’ Founding Fathers took [Enlightenment principles] further and the federalism of the United States also, of relatively powerful states trying to constrain federal government from becoming too centralized. . . .
“But after World War II, the federal government of the United States started sucking the resources to the center, and the power of states started to diminish. Interestingly, the First Amendment started overriding states’ laws around that time, which I see as a function of increasing central power in the United States.”

Wow. Assange praising federalism, criticizing the centralization of power and even taking a shot at the so-called “incorporation doctrine”?

Has he been reading Lew Rockwell?

Has he been watching Glenn Beck?

Is there some kind of Rothbardian anarcho-libertarianism influence on Assange’s worldview? Will we next find Assange favorably citing General Lee’s prophecy to Lord Acton that “the consolidation of the states into one vast republic, sure to be aggressive abroad and despotic at home, will be the certain precursor of that ruin which has overwhelmed all those that have preceded it”?

Does the SPLC know about this?

Meanwhile, CNN’s Jessica Yellin defends herself against Glenn Greenwald’s accusation that she is “leading the crusade against the transparency brought about by WikiLeaks.”

UPDATE: Welcome, Instapundit readers!


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