History

From the Vaults: Maggie’s Militants, 1989.

I have previously discussed (here, here and here) the antics of Federation of Conservative Students in the mid 1980s. Tim Evans is a leading light in the Libertarian Alliance. In 1989 he produced the documentary film on this link.

Antoine Clarke, who had been on the anarchist wing of the FCS,  argued that  taxation is immoral. This claim is a standard one emanating from libertarians and anarcho-capitalists.

Chris Tame argued for money to be privatised. He also fully admitted that the free market anarchists have influenced the libertarian right and that they study anarchists from the radical left-wing tradition such as Mikhail Bakunin. Moreover, he declared that  libertarians are atheists and rational beings who want to abolish death and taxes: “Most libertarians are ideological immortalists…. We are not content with four score years and ten .. we want immortality.”

Madsen Pirie of the Adam Smith Institute argued for getting rid of state provided education and the National Health Service and  championed the privatisation of all state owned industries.

Brian Micklethwaite argued for legalising racial discrimination in the work place. The libertarian view is that the state has no business interfering with the freedom of employers to hire who they wish to and if a company does not wish to hire black people then the state should not stop them. Micklethwaite also wanted to see the privatisation of roads where the owner of road could, as an example, allow only people wearing a suit and tie to walk down the street.

David Hoile argued against Marxist and fascist regimes. He deemed “Marxist socialism to be as unpleasant and evil as national socialism” and he cheered on the minimal state. He declared that there is an  inherent right to use  “armed struggle” when up against a totalitarian state. He believed that it was true that people had a right to use armed struggle against the Nazis and equally true that people have a right to use armed struggle against Marxist regimes.  He also concurred with the idea that in the future that there would be a place for anarchists in the Conservative Party.

Mark Haley, another FCS activist, who had a reluctance to remove his sun glasses, cheered on what he referred  to as “freedom fighters”  from UNITA and the Nicaraguan Contras.  These organisations,  he argued, were campaigning for democracy.  He determined that the  IRA were Marxist, the Nicaraguan Sandinistas were Nazis and that the Apartheid South African government was both “obnoxious” and “left-wing.”

Mark Allot discussed how libertarians inside the FCS took control of regions and ensured that they did not fall to the “enemy.” They got libertarian speakers to speak to Conservative student branches and tried to convince freshers of their arguments before the “wets” or the authoritarian right were able to do so.

Russell Walters was interviewed as a lone voice among libertarians opposed to the legalisation of drugs such as heroin. His position, which he admitted was inconsistent with libertarian theory, was that when someone is addicted to drugs, they are suffering with a medical condition that means the usage of the drugs is not through free will. He also argued that if drugs were legalised, children would have access to them, a state of affairs, he  was not prepared to see come about.

Steve Nicholson, who had been an FCS Vice-Chairman, discussed why the Conservative Party closed the FCS down.  He admitted that the Party was not happy with FCS for having accused former prime minister Harold Macmillan of being a war criminal. (The FCS had argued that it was a war crime for Macmillan to agree to Stalin’s request to have the Cossacks deported back to the Soviet Union).  Nicholson also stated that the Party was not happy with the FCS supporting the full integration of Northern Ireland into the UK and nor was the Party happy with FCS support for  some of the anti-Marxist “freedom fighting” organisations around the world.

Teresa Gorman, who was already a free market supporting Conservative MP, was interviewed. She was pleased that the FCS was there on campus putting forward conservative ideas. When questioned on the matter, she stated that while the law against drugs was in place, it must be upheld, it was an entirely legitimate position to campaign for legalisation.

Karen Cooksley admitted that there were divergent views between the libertarians on the issue of abortion: on the one hand there were those like her that believed “all life is sacred and that abortion is wrong,” that “the baby [foetus] is an individual which has its own right to life” and those that felt that “the child is a parasite in the mother’s body until it is born and therefore a woman should be able to choose at any time to abort the baby that she is carrying.” She felt that solving this dilemma could take years.

Tim Evans himself declared “The FCS generation appears to be on the road to power in the Conservative Party.”

Do watch the video!

Update

I have been emailed about Mark Haley who I have referred to above and can be seen in the video warbling on denouncing the “left wing” South African government. I am assured that it is the very same Mark Haley who is now known as: The Grand Chancellor of the Grand Priory of the United Kingdom, Chev. Lt.Col. Mark D. Haley MKN GCStG OLJ BSc.  A more recent picture of him can be seen here. He is clearly a very important man and possibly should be referred to as “His Excellency.”

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