A number of years ago I made the decision not to give change to the homeless, not that I don't feel for their predicament, or that I don't understand the political economy that puts them there.

All my life I have worked, either as an lone individual, arguing the efficacy and necessity of socialism, in person, and here on E2, or as a political organizer for those political parties that espouse something close to what I believe.

For all that rugged individualism is extolled as the way to riches, and to aleviating the misery of those under discussion in this node, it is rather pointless for either goal, though it does let one feel good.

And that is the point: to feel good. The thrust of libertarian policy is the deflation of any possible notion of collective action in favour of individual.

The notion I espouse may be thought rather cruel, I understand: give change to the homelss that you see, send money to the poor child you see on those television commercials from the Christian Save the Children Fund, feel good, and nothing will change. Work to see the political structure for what it is; work to change its political economy, join with others to provide collective solutions, be vilified by the libertarians that we have permitted to benefit from our effort.

It is not easy, to be sure, but is it any harder than what we now have?