Rod Dreher writes: This is the thing that drives me nuts about libertarians. It is a philosophy that works for people who have a significant degree of self-control, or who at least have internalized a social ethic of self-control. That is not most of humanity. When we were a more religious country, there was a certain moral code imposed by the mainstream that, fair or not, kept a lot of people from going off the rails. That’s gone.
Just yesterday I ran into a friend who told me about N., a woman we both know. N. is a white working class woman who, earlier this summer, left her husband and three kids to run off with a guy she met. Now she’s strung herself out on pills, and has left that guy. Some variation on this story plays out over and over among a people that within living memory may have lacked money and education, but had a coherent, binding moral code by which they lived.