Tuesday, January 31, 2023

Vacating the field

Matt Wallaert has drunk deeply of the liberal kool-aid. Here is his take on the issue of prostitution:

What he is arguing is that if his wife chose to prostitute herself, she would not need to justify her decision to him as her husband as it would be entirely her own decision.

He is arguing this to be consistent with his liberal beliefs. Liberals generally believe in maximising individual autonomy. When applied to women, this means believing that a woman is only free when she is empowered to choose in any direction, without negative consequence or judgement. Matt Wallaert takes this idea to its absolute logical conclusion by claiming that he has no right to judge the (hypothetical) decision of his own wife to prostitute herself with other men.

It is one example of how the liberal formula can be degrading rather than liberating. Note as well just how incompatible the belief is with the idea of a spousal union and with the pursuit of a common good within family life. In this case, the wife can choose anything at all, no matter how damaging to the marriage, and the husband has no right to challenge or query the decision.

I would also point out that such a belief also undermines the possibility of effective male leadership. If you think the important thing is to be able to choose in any direction without negative judgement or consequence, then how can you put yourself forward to guide or to lead? If your best response is "it's up to her" no matter what she has chosen, how are you leading? Are you not vacating the field?


  1. Yes, this is why the true conservative case should always relate back to what works for society and the whole, and not resolve itself to individualist values or what an individual may desire. Such an approach can only lead to liberalism. When you orientate on a basis of "what evidentially works" rather than "this has to be right because it is what my ideology dictates" it is so much easier to avoid contradictions and pitfalls.

  2. The madness of liberalism is evident when crude subject matter such as the above is said to be a matter of choice. Kind regards Tom

  3. It is also a dereliction of duty. Part of being a spouse is looking out for the good of the other. While Matt himself might not know or refuse to acknowledge that prostitution is bad for women (I suppose he might even claim it is empowering), it is nonetheless.

    1. "Part of being a spouse is looking out for the good of the other". You reminded me of what Charles I, the last Austrian emperor, said to his future wife on the eve of their wedding "Now we must help each other attain heaven." You are right, of course, that we should will the good for our spouse. I imagine that Matt has picked up the idea that the good for his wife is a freedom to choose anything, but this requires us to believe that nothing is harmful to us physically, psychologically or spiritually and that nothing that a spouse can choose to do would be damaging to a marital union. It is a far fetched belief that runs against ordinary human experience.

    2. Re Charle’s comment, Catholic teaching is that marriage is a sacrament whose primary purpose is the attainment of salvation of the spouses by each other. I suspect that is where he got it from.

      Re freedom, it would be more obvious if Matt was asked whether it’s possible to choose things that are bad for us — in which case you either run into a paradox, if you’re a liberal, or acknowledge that free choice is not inherently and totally good.

      Following through, that would actually be another Heaven on Earth fallacy, now that I think about it, because of course we are only open to bad choices on this Earth.

  4. So much of liberalism is a massive status game pretending to believe what you're supposed to believe to show how 'independent' you are.

    I don't believe for a moment, and note that it never explicitly comes up --- its all pie in the sky signalling, that this guy would find what he advocates acceptable at all if his wife were doing it. Its all WAY too hypothetical. Like plans for a new Soviet commune paradise. Such 'independence' is for someone else.

    What kind of people pretend to an ethic for others that they would never actually want in practice for themselves?? Either a very deluded or a very vicious and hostile person who conscious of not, wishes ill on others he doesn't have any intention of practicing on himself.

    Does anybody REALLY believe this guy would be fine with his wife prostituting herself??

    If individual autonomy is the highest good--- what exactly is he doing been married to begin with?? What kind of marriage vows did he say??

    Did he believe them, or was it all a lie of appearances? What about now?? Does he even remember his marriage? Why has he conveniently forgotten it NOW? And just now.

    Is individual autonomy just an excuse for selfishness, narcissism or actual solispsism??

    The advocacy of liberalism has a lot of similarity to the tragedy of the commons dilemma: its good if only you practice it---but it everyone else does the benefits aren't only reduced to zero, but actually negative.

    I don't believe liberals are ever trying to be honest about their 'liberalism'. There's something unseemly and subversive in that.

    1. Yes, I find it curious that something theoretically permitted under liberalism like a contract — i.e. you could frame marriage as a contract of sorts, as libertarians are wont to — in practice tends not to come up. Theoretically Matt ought to have no problem thinking of his marriage as a contract that guarantees him exclusive carnal rights to his wife — precluding prostitution, which would therefore be a breach of contract — but I would guess in practice he would in fact see this as a gross violation of his wife’s freedom.

      Which is all a roundabout way of saying that liberals like Matt don’t seem to believe in the freedom of choice to restrict your own freedom somehow. I admit this is an embryonic thought that might not be as definitive as I’ve stated it here.

      As for liberalism being subversive, I consider its contradictions and practical impossibilities to be a sort of “proof by contradiction” of its falsity.