What it means–and the consequences of–being a Rothbardian Libertarian–in the words of Hans-Hermann Hoppe

Unlike Murray, quite a few individuals who had learned essentially everything they ever knew from Murray, in particular his Man, Economy and State, were willing to make such intellectual compromises, and they were richly rewarded for their intellectual “flexibility” and“ tolerance.” But that was not Murray! And consequently, he was (and still is) ignored, excluded, or denounced by the chieftains of the “limited-government-free-market industry.” And he was essentially left without any institutional support, as a lone fighter, until the arrival of Lew Rockwell and the Mises Institute.

I experienced this Rothbard-phobia secondhandedly, if you will. For as soon as word had gotten out that the new German arrival was Murray’s boy and also
appeared rather “intransigent,” I found myself immediately placed on the same blacklists with him. Thus, I had quickly learned a first important real-life lesson of what it means to be a Rothbardian.

Another lesson was in humility. Murray had a huge library, had read and digested an enormous amount of literature and was consequently a humble man. He was always reluctant and highly skeptical to assume or recognize any “originality” claims. “Originality” claims, he knew, are made most frequently by people  with tiny libraries and little reading. In distinct contrast, Murray was highly generous in giving credit to others. And he was equally generous in giving advice to anyone asking. Indeed, on almost any conceivable subject, he was prepared, off the top of his head, to provide you with an extensive bibliography. As well, he encouraged any sign of productivity even among his lowliest students.

While I always tried to follow this example, I could not bring myself to go quite as far as Murray did, however. Because I thought and still think that Murray’s humility was excessive, that he was humble almost to a fault. His students at Brooklyn Polytechnic, for instance, mostly engineering majors (or, as Murray described Mises’s students at NYU, “packaging majors”), had no idea who he was, because he never mentioned his own works. They were genuinely surprised to find out from me who their jolly professor was when I substituted teaching Murray’s class while he was out of town. And at UNLV the situation was not much different. While I actively promoted him as his unofficial PR-agent, Murray continued in his self-deprecation. Although he had written on almost any imaginable subject in the social sciences, he would, when he suggested or assigned term papers to his students, mention his own related writings, if at all, only as some sort of after thought or upon specific request.

Getting Libertarianism Right, pp. 111-113, Hans-Hermann Hoppe

SEE:

Book: Getting Libertarianism Right-Hoppe

 

The Uncompromising Rothbard