Karl Popper and “Intolerance of the Intolerant”

Sean Gabb

In the abstract, Popper’s claim is arguably valid. However, it’s routinely used as an excuse to censor disagreeable opinions that have first been demonised. When I was at university, and I argued for the toleration of racial prejudice, the quote was rolled out, and I was asked if I’d have argued for the toleration of the NSDAP in 1932. The answer, of course, was that a few dozen NF intellectuals and their skinhead followers were not in the slightest position to take over in England: the main threat to liberty was proto-PC. The same argument is now used to shut up anti-gay evangelists and whatever has become of the BNP.

The argument should always be turned into who is a clear and present danger to a liberal constitutional order, not who may or may not be “intolerant.”

34 comments


  1. [quote]”The argument should always be turned into who is a clear and present danger to a liberal constitutional order, not who may or may not be “intolerant.””[unquote]

    The problem, as I see it, with this is that the ‘liberal constitutional order’ might start to unravel itself Ouroboros-like, and in so doing, present a threat to the racial people who founded it. When that process becomes clear, those who mean to oppose ‘racial death’ on the basis that it would lead to the death of the culture and civilisation the race expresses, may appear to everybody else to be “clear and present danger to a liberal constitutional order”.

    So I think your assessment of the matter may represent a typical ‘liberal’ misdiagnosis of the problem. Your focus is on maintaining the order, because you venerate its values, whereas it could be that the real focus should be on maintaining the people who created the order in the first place, even if that means some of the values you hold dear have to be abrogated or sacrificed for a while in order to protect civilisation’s baseline.

    The difficulty is that this would involve a recognition that institutions, values, ethics, even morals, are, generally-speaking, just a means to an end. It seems to me that our civilisation is under attack from peoples who, while they might lack our ingenuity, creativity, and dare I say it, our natural beauty and intelligence, they are inured to the raw struggle for individual and racial survival, and as a result, do have a cold and ruthless understanding of the essence.


  2. “those who mean to oppose ‘racial death’ on the basis that it would lead to the death of the culture and civilisation the race expresses, may appear to everybody else to be ‘clear and present danger to a liberal constitutional order.'”

    Doubtful, at least these days. Sure, that was a problem back in the 1930s when such people WERE a clear and present danger to a liberal constitutional order (e.g. the Weimar Republic), but the results of that couple of decades seem to have permanently changed public perception. These days most of of us, apart from some demagogues who find them a useful “threat,” just write off witch-doctory “racialist” idiots as the whackjobs they are.


    • Thomas,

      Thanks for the comment, but I think you might have misunderstood where I am coming from. That’s understandable – admittedly, I was a little opaque. I must be careful, you see, about how I word things here.

      I am one of the “racialist idiots” of whom you speak. In a nice sort of way, your post actually demonstrates my point. Those of us who seek to defend civilisation biologically [if I may put it in that grandiloquent way], are apt to be misunderstood and even not tolerated, whether on crude Popperian grounds, or the more sophisticated grounds outlined in the short piece above. This is, at least in part, because we are perceived to be a threat to the ‘liberal constitutional order’. There is an irony in this (you might see it as a Catch-22, assuming you accept my premise), in that the liberal constitutional order can only be ‘saved’ if we defend civilisation biologically. This highlights a dilemma for liberal-minded people, like yourself and Dr Gabb.


      • Tom,

        Yes, I assumed, based on your usage, that you were one of the “racialist” idiots in question.

        I don’t misunderstand you, and I do tolerate you. Tolerance requires neither approval nor abstention from criticism. All it requires is that I neither use nor advocate force to forbid you to make yourself look like an idiot in public.


        • Your response is fairly typical of people like you.

          I was very civilised and courtesous, you respond with calculated rudeness – yet, you probably think you have the moral and intellectual high-ground. It’s all about keeping up appearances, being a good egg, signalling your morality to others.

          More importantly, you don’t address my point above. We both know why you don’t.


              • You seem to be unfamiliar with the rules of blog commenting. For your convenience, here they are:

                1) I’ll reply to anything I damn well please; unless
                2) The owner of the blog forbids me to do so.


                • Again, you seem to have misunderstood (something you are making a habit of). My reply to you just now was an attempt to conclude this shameful exchange, in which you seem determined to waste my time.

                  It’s interesting to me that you begin your latest very witty post with a meaningless, nonsensical comment. It’s almost as if you want to advertise that you can’t think straight, but I think it’s more likely to be a clue that you are signalling. Why would I be unfamiliar with what happens on blogs? And what exactly are the “rules” of blog commenting?

                  All I have done is address a relevant point to the OP. He can decide for himself whether, and in what way, he wishes to reply. At this point, I couldn’t care less one way or the other. Anybody else reading my post can also reply, if they choose. My hope is that somebody will come along with something more relevant than your contributions so far.

                  Stranger things have happened.


                • I don’t forbid you, but I have asked certain people to moderate the expression of certain opinions. Though you couldn’t know this, I now suggest it wouldn’t be right to argue with someone who is at a disadvantage.


                  • Sean,

                    Having made my point, I’ll take your suggestion.

                    Given the composition of the LA blog’s commenting readership, it might SEEM like what I do is wander around the Internet, hunting down “racialists” and pointing out that they’re idiots. But that’s not really the case.

                    I follow a number of sites on a daily basis, including LA’s. In fact, I am subscribed to receive an email notification when anything is posted here, and generally read the site with interest. Sometimes I comment, sometimes I don’t. When I happen to notice a “racialist” comment, I make a quick idiot note so that normal people who read the site will understand that it is not a racialist site.

                    If the whole of my commenting, either here in particular or everywhere in general, was analyzed, the “racialists are idiots” content would barely amount to a blip. It just happens to stand out where it appears.

                    Now, as to “tolerance,” I think it’s important to understand it well, and one good point of historical reference would be your own country’s Toleration Acts a few centuries back. To “tolerate” Catholics did not mean that the Church of England re-entered the Catholic communion, acknowledged the pope as head of the church, etc. Nor did it mean that the Church of England adopted the doctrines of the Quakers or other dissenters. It just meant that holding to a religious belief other than the Anglican writ didn’t get your meetings raided, your publications censored, your nose cut off or you drawn and quartered.

                    Obviously I find the prosecution of the minister in occupied Ireland offensive and non-“tolerant.” He was being held to possible legal punishment for expressing his opinions. On the other hand, disagreeing with him on those opinions (e.g. that Islam is “satanic” or whatever) would not be intolerant, it would just be disagreeing with him.


                  • I don’t like it when people are needlessly rude and obnoxious, which is not to say I am perfect by any stretch, but I am almost-always polite and thoughtful (or I like to think so) when contributing here, and the vast majority of my posts make no mention of these ‘controversial’ issues.

                    I do not come here to “argue”. I come here to discuss, debate and learn. In my experience, libertarians are the best critical thinkers, and I am also attracted to libertarian ideas, even if I remain unconvinced. Unbeknownst to you, I have also been following your work for more than 20 years, so I have a genuine admiration and interest in your writings, but I am not a sycophant. I am not afraid to say when I disagree.

                    I can have arguments with idiots anywhere on the internet – and I would be the first to admit, there are plenty of idiots who share my views – but here I want to approach things intellectually. I don’t mind being wrong, but that is not what this person is attempting to prove. He just wants to score points, and I find that unimpressive.

                    Anyway, I have added a further post below, which sums up my response to him, but there is no compunction on him to respond – and frankly, I would prefer that he did not. But it’s up to him. All I can say is that if there was an ignore or blocking feature, I would certainly use it.


  3. If I understand correctly, I think Mr Knapp is telling us that any kind of racial perspective is always wrong. It seems to follow, in relation to my point, that he doesn’t think civilisation has any kind of racial basis.

    In the context of Dr Gabb’s original post, and my question posed to him, I think people like Mr Knapp need to ask themselves which is the more important of these:

    (a). tolerance and the other values of your ‘liberal constitutional order’;
    OR
    (b). racial survival.

    Mr Knapp’s premise would suggest that his choice is inextricably (a), and he thinks that people like me threaten this ‘liberal constitutional order’.

    If so, I think he is being naive. By ignoring the racial basis of culture/civilisation, we are guaranteeing the end of tolerance in any meaningful sense. I think that Dr Gabb’s formulation is inadequate for the simple reason that the so-called ‘liberal constitutional order’ sometimes has to be defended using illiberal means. I would maintain that the difficulty we have at the moment is that, in relation to populations and demographics, this is understood better by people outside our culture than within.

    Popper might have been right, that in order to assure tolerance, we have to defend ourselves against the intolerant, it’s just that when he spoke of the ‘intolerant’, he was making the same assumption as people here, in that he had in mind people like me.


    • Mr. Rogers,

      Against Sean’s advice, I will briefly engage your points:

      1) I’m an anarchist, not a supporter of a “liberal constitutional order.”

      2) “Racial perspective” is like “astrological perspective” or “phrenological perspective” or “entrail-reading perspective.” It’s not that there’s no such “perspective,” it’s that such a “perspective” is irrational. I have no problem “tolerating” the insane, but neither have I any obligation to pretend that insanity is sanity just to make you feel better about your incoherent ravings.


  4. I agree with Tom Rogers. The “liberal constitutional order” is an expression of a particular race. If the English legal tradition could be adopted and made to work by anyone, then it would surely have spread to every country by now, like smartphones and Facebook. Different races produce different societies – high trust and low trust, r-selected and K-selected reproduction patterns, etc. A one-size-fits-all political system is impossible.


  5. Slightly on another tack, hasn’t the problem been more that very intolerant ideologies and religions have been tolerated when they shouldn’t have been?
    This word “tolerance” contains its own contradiction, doesn’t it? If I feel the need to tolerate something, it is probably because I think it is wrong. If I think it is wrong, I must feel under some obligation not to tolerate it. I suppose there is the grey-area where I merely dislike something, but “tolerating” something is only really meaningful when that something involves some kind of moral wrong. Now, for a rational person, “religious tolerance” is relatively easy when this refers to a theological difference of little practical import (transubstantiation, for example), or should be easy at least, but it is much more difficult when it refers, for example, to marriage and child-rearing practices. What I am asking is: how much injustice and suffering is one prepared to accept in a religious movement or family before it becomes impossible to tolerate? “Tolerance” can be a form of cowardice, a failure to defend the liberties of, for example, women, children and powerless men from their intolerant “elders”.
    On the race issue, I would say that there is plenty of evidence that genes influence behaviour and that therefore the character of a society cannot be divorced from the people who form it. But I doubt whether all our problems would be solved by racial purity per se. The “tribe” is not a very nice organisation; low-status males in particular don’t get a fair deal, and are fobbed-off with “it’s for the good of the tribe”.
    It is the Democratic Christian State that offers the best hope for us. I know that this is perhaps not a popular opinion on a Libertarian Blog, but Christianity offers nearly all individuals the chance of a dignified and tolerable life through monogamous marriage and the Democratic State offers law and justice to protect everyone from universal human evil. Are all human groups capable of this? Is racial purity compatible with Christianity? Or might a Democratic Christian State be able to make multi-racialism work?
    As the Irishman said, however, “I wouldn’t start from here!” If we hadn’t tolerated the intolerable we might have been in a better position.


    • [quote]”This word “tolerance” contains its own contradiction, doesn’t it? If I feel the need to tolerate something, it is probably because I think it is wrong. If I think it is wrong, I must feel under some obligation not to tolerate it. I suppose there is the grey-area where I merely dislike something, but “tolerating” something is only really meaningful when that something involves some kind of moral wrong.”[unquote]

      For me, this is more of a paradox than a contradiction. Toleration means allowing something to continue. You can do this even if you dislike or morally object to it, so the contradiction is only apparent.

      [quote]”Now, for a rational person, “religious tolerance” is relatively easy when this refers to a theological difference of little practical import (transubstantiation, for example), or should be easy at least, but it is much more difficult when it refers, for example, to marriage and child-rearing practices. What I am asking is: how much injustice and suffering is one prepared to accept in a religious movement or family before it becomes impossible to tolerate? “Tolerance” can be a form of cowardice, a failure to defend the liberties of, for example, women, children and powerless men from their intolerant “elders”.”[unquote]

      The flip side of this, as I was attempting to explain before Mr Knapp took me on a detour, is that the infliction of injustice and suffering might be necessary to defend the people who created the ideas that form the basis of modern tolerance. In my opinion, there is a risk that tolerance becomes not just cowardice, as you say, but a luxury that society cannot afford. We could tolerate ourselves to extinction.

      In my opinion, this presents a dilemma for the liberal mind. Do you tolerate intolerance of your own self and the biological fundamentals of your civilisation? If so, how far is this intolerance tolerated before you have to put biological survival first?

      The other point of my earlier post has been missed. If intelligent extra-terrrestrials landed on Earth and proposed that they should colonise our habitat, and breed us out, would we be ‘terrestrialist’ bigots for insisting that, perhaps, we should have the right to fight to survive and continue our kind? Would people like Mr Knapp laugh, mock and sneer and call us “irrational” and “insane”? Because, after all, we’re all the same underneath and race isn’t linked to culture – and we must be tolerant.

      Maybe we are all the same underneath, at least we’re all DNA and atoms. But don’t we also have the right to fight for the existence of our kind? This cannot necessarily be explained rationally.

      [quote]”…and the Democratic State offers law and justice to protect everyone from universal human evil. Are all human groups capable of this? Is racial purity compatible with Christianity? Or might a Democratic Christian State be able to make multi-racialism work?”[unquote]

      I accept that Christianity has played an important and central role in Western civilisation, but I don’t personally think that healthy and successful societies can be based on positivist nostroms such as ‘law’, ‘justice’ and notions of universal good/evil. No such society can survive for long. It will be quickly overrun or will gradually kill itself within, or both, as our civilisation is now doing. I consider Mr Knapp is the very embodiment of this problem. He thinks I am “insane” and “irrational”, so reality is inverted. Not that Mr Knapp is these things, but that a civilisation that is tolerant cannot value itself for itself. So we have a culture that is not fit for purpose, and part of the explanation is that Christianity fused with the intellectual currents of the critical Enlightenment and degenerated into the ethical liberal secularism that is now metapolitically dominant in the West.

      Not that I am opposed to ‘law’, ‘justice’ and absolute morality. Quite the contrary, I am very much in favour of these things, but I think in so far as such ideas exist and are applied, they should be incidental to the real goal, which should be the science of Man.


      • You let people speak their minds freely. You intervene where actions are concerned when they violate some legitimate right.


        • Easier said than done. A person’s actions may have no immediate detrimental effect on anyone, but collectively such actions by a large number of people may have disastrous consequences in the longer term. I do agree that most laws passed in the last half century or so could do with being wiped off the statute books.


        • [quote]”You let people speak their minds freely. You intervene where actions are concerned when they violate some legitimate right.”[unquote]

          That’s a very neat way of putting it, but it sounds a bit academic to my ear. Let’s get ‘real’.

          Do these ‘legitimate rights’ include the right to preserve one’s own civilisation? If your civilisation is being slowly abolished, or changed in some fundamental way, through a soft invasion and proliferation of people who are racially and culturally alien, are those who oppose this a threat to your ‘liberal constitutional order’ due to their intolerance of the ‘Other’, or are they axiomatically defending liberalism by being intolerant of the forces that will destroy tolerance?

          At what point do you accept that, pragmatically, you have to join with, rather than oppose, the defenders of the civilisational perimeter, even if they do have coarse manners, in order to protect the very tolerance and civilised life you want to continue?

          That, to my mind, is the liberal dilemma, and it’s what takes Popper’s aphorism out of the theoretical realm into the existential realm. It’s what makes this discussion ‘real’. Otherwise, it’s just an academic discussion in which the cleverer among us exchange neat little parcels of logic that amount to nothing more than verbal tricks.

          Mr Knapp embodies the liberal dilemma of which I speak. From now on, in tribute to Mr Moriarty (above), and in honour of our American friend, I’ll call it the Knappian Paradox.

          Whether Mr Knapp believes in a ‘liberal constitutional order’ is not germane to the point, except that it reinforces the Knappian Paradox for rejectionists and refuseniks such as he. Even a left-anarchist has to support a liberal constitutional order in some pragmatic sense, simply because it exists and allows him to flourish and hold his anarchist position, and share his views freely with others. Mr Knapp doesn’t want to be intolerant, so he is blinded to the threat to tolerance presented by his own views. He thinks I am the threat to tolerance. In fact, he is.

          Both he, and with respect, Dr Gabb, don’t seem to understand that ‘tolerance’ is culturally relativist. What might be considered ‘tolerance’ (as a noun) to an ethno-European, will not necessarily embody the value of tolerance to a Sunni Moslem, or a Little Green Man from outer space. Our view of tolerance, and this ‘liberal constitutional order’ of which you speak, is only possible because it has been built by a particular people. If the people change, then the values and institutions will change, or change gradually in a certain direction. The changes might be for the better in some ways, or they could be for the worse, but the point is that the change will occur and so the ‘tolerance’ that you speak, will one day not exist.

          The problem though is that the Knappian Paradox – opposing those who defend your own tolerance – can only be framed within a Popperian view. The real point here is that those like Mr Knapp and Dr Gabb who hold to this Knappian mindset, which opposes the intolerant who want to protect the tolerant, do so because they have no sense of protecting the essence. In other words, they adopt what might be characterised as an ultra-rationalist perspective.

          This is where we come to the limitations of the Popperian view. Popper frames ‘tolerance’ as an action, a verb. In doing so, he deracinates the concept (whether he did this purposefully, I can’t say). This, I think, explains why the Knappian Paradox arises. Meta-liberals like Dr Gabb and Mr Knapp don’t see societal values and civilisations as having any genetic basis. They want to be rational, legalistic and moral. They are the original classical liberals. They have no sense of the pre-modern notions of defending the ‘Rasse’ and ‘volk’ – which I accept cannot be rationally explained, except in the context of immediate threats to survival.


          • Because “rights” are highly respected in our civilisation, there is a general tendency – and not just among leftists – to express collective preferences in terms of rights.

            You have the right to life, liberty and property. These are both historically and logically easy to define, and have a settled language of expression. You have no “right” to anything other than that. Let us accept, for the sake of argument, that it may be desirable to have a state that will protect the cultural and ethnic continuity of a given society. The measures required for this will usually involve a violation of rights. Immigration control, most obviously, involves a violation of rights – the right of others to do with their own lives and property as they will. This does not automatically make those measures illegitimate. There may be a case, on the grounds of some utilitarian calculus, for violating rights. It may be that violating some rights in the present will ensure a more secure possession, over the long term, of the rights that are left untouched. But you should be honest about this. You need to weigh costs against benefits. The moment you start attaching the language of rights to collective preferences, you will end by arguing that slavery is freedom and that censorship is freedom of expression.

            In the same way, you have no “right” to welfare benefits, or to medical treatment free at the point of use. There may be pragmatic and local arguments for making these things available. It may be that they are needed to make the best of things in present circumstances. But they too involve multiple violations of rights. We need to be clear what rights are violated, and to discuss whether the violation really is pragmatically justified. There is no honest benefit to be had from saying that the NHS or Tax Credits have made us more free in the traditional sense of the word.

            To take yet another example, Trial by Jury involves a violation of rights, a violation similar to military conscription. Most jurymen would rather not be in court at the time they are summoned. Many turn up only because of the penalties for non-attendance. We accept this because trial by a Jury is more likely to be just than trial by a Judge sitting alone.

            By all means, tell us we are wrong in our attachment to individual rights. But try not to tell us we misunderstand our own political language, and that your redefinition of words with an agreed meaning will bring us to some higher freedom than the one we talk about.


            • But I framed the ‘collective right’ from an activationist standpoint. I have called it a right to fight for survival or a right to preserve one’s own culture, etc. I have not suggested that it should be some sort of bald, legalistic right to this or that as would be conceived in the contemporary world, so I think your comments don’t really assist much.

              I am willing to accept that the right to struggle for survival starts with the individual, and in so far as it is a collective right, it is just an extension of individual rights. Someone fights for his identifiable tribal group either because it may aid his individual mortal or genetic survival, or because it aids the survival of others who are similar to him. We can argue over whether this makes sense from a rationalist point of view. I suspect it doesn’t when it’s extended to the larger extended groups, other than in very specific circumstances. It’s really more a reflection of pre-modern thought, and one of my pet theories is that the reason Nationalism has declined in political importance is because people are, in some ways, getting ‘smarter’. Nationalism is a primeval mindset. A simple person understands it straight-away. A more intelligent person might struggle and might question why one would wish to exclude ‘the Other’. After all, “aren’t we all the same?” Etc. That doesn’t mean the more mentally complex individual is ‘right’. I happen to think the simple man is right in the matter – but that, unfortunately, is also part of the problem. Intelligence is not always a good adaptation for survival. In evolutionary terms, it has a marginal utility.

              Anyway, I’m not sure if I have made myself fully understood with my views about tolerance and what I consider to be the liberal dilemma in modern society, but you’re plainly an intelligent man, no doubt superior to me in that regard, so it must be that I have not made myself clear. I will try to do so here.

              Tolerance is not just something people do, it’s also a ‘thing’. It has a collective significance and is a construct that has to be defended collectively from time-to-time if individuals are to benefit from it. You can’t just reduce society to individual transactions, and while it might be a useful academic exercise and aid understanding of complex ideas, I don’t see how doing so has any practical, Real World relevance. I think by individuating things, you may also limit your understanding of social forces. I would argue that tolerance is not a unitary ‘thing’ or the result of a bold, modern ideation. Rather, it’s a dialectical force, the result of struggles between different people.

              Tolerance differs ideologically and institutionally from one time and place to another. What to us might seem uncivilised, intolerant – even barbaric – to others might represent the epitome of civilised values. What a devout Moslem conceives of as tolerance is not going to be quite the same as what we see as tolerance. Some of the decisions that Western intellectuals see as merely tolerant, and thus examples of civilised tolerance, other cultures would regard as civilisational suicide.

              The Knappian Paradox sums up the Western liberal dilemma, which is that tolerance itself leads to intolerance, and that arguing against the intolerant who defend tolerance leads to greater intolerance. To put it brutally, Mr Knapp is arguing against himself. It would actually be quicker if he just put a gun to his own head.

              The Paradox is that in order to defend tolerance, you must also be prepared to be intolerant. If you are not willing to be intolerant, then your tolerance will eventually negate itself and become the embodiment of the thing that you set out to oppose. You will also kill your own civilisation in the process, or at least, change it in such a way that it becomes unrecognisable, as it will be detached from its own biological roots.

              So, intolerant ideologies can be a vaccine and antibody against intolerant enemies.


              • Some of the decisions that Western intellectuals see as merely tolerant, and thus examples of civilised tolerance, other cultures would regard as civilisational suicide

                True. And often what is encouraged as “tolerance” in one ethnic group is merely another ethnic group’s way of persuading it to drop its defences. In general, white people’s tolerance of immigration advances the interests of other races who wouldn’t dream of reciprocating it in their own homelands.


                • Rob,

                  You provide us with an example of the Knappian Paradox in action. The liberal’s toleration creates intolerance, ironically of himself. The liberal’s intolerance of civilisation’s defenders, and his refusal to be intolerant when it is expedient to be, sets the scene for intolerance of the liberal, and his genetic/racial death, and thus the death of his civilisation.

                  Your view is that intolerance can be weaponised. I think you’re right, but I suspect it’s mainly an unconscious process, in which intoleration is the epigenetic result of different cultural groups having to live together. The logical conclusion of this intolerance is death for one or more other groups – individual and racial. This is not necessarily consciously done or intented. It’s just Nature.

                  Once the meta-liberal understands and honestly confronts the Knappian Paradox and develops a more realistic and scientific understanding of Man, he can work on an antidote. The difficulty for the liberal is that the antidote is intolerance. A resolution of the Paradox requires tolerance of the intolerant so that tolerance can survive.


                  • Correction of the last sentence in the above comment:

                    A resolution of the Paradox requires that the liberal be intolerant so that tolerance can survive.


                    • Or better still, I think:

                      A resolution of the Paradox requires that the liberal be intolerant so that the LIBERAL can survive (and thus, his standards of tolerance can endure in some form).


                    • I agree. The paradox means that liberalism contains the seeds of its own destruction – and the destruction of the people and civilization under its control.

                      Sean Gabb (if I understand him rightly) acknowledges the differences between races and believes that in a libertarian world the people who want to do so will be able to retain their racially distinct communities and the culture that defines them. That’s an honest opinion, but I just don’t agree with it. I believe the retention of racially homogeneous nation states is the only way races and the civilizations they created can be preserved.


  6. […] A major issue today in all Western societies is of course mass immigration.  I’m sure somebody will come along to correct me on this if I am mistaken (I am not an expert on all these different strands of right-wing anarchoid/libertarian thought), but my understanding is that the intellectual luminaries of right-libertarianism, Messrs. Mises and Rothbard, were firmly against mass immigration and would have accepted the need under present conditions for Western societies to collectively defend themselves. We are, after all, talking about a threat to the very existence of libertarian ideas. The moral and ethical difficulty that Western intellectuals seem to have in recognising this threat is what I call the Knappian Paradox, which I described in a previous thread [‘Karl Popper and the Intolerance of the Intolerant’]: […]

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