Neoliberalism or state-approved hyper-individualism promotes the theory that societal problems (like involuntary celibacy) should be reduced to and blamed on the individual. The theory values anti-coercion, individual consent, free markets, non-altruism, and agency above most things. Neoliberalism became the dominant mode of thinking in the West since Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher, and is seen across almost all modern political parties. Many neoliberals do not call themselves by this name and some consider it a slur, and it is frequently used as one by certain opponents of neoliberals, such as socialists, anti-austerity social democrats, environmentalists, and fascists. Neoliberalism is the main philosophy of the boards inceltears, kiwifarms, reddit.com/r/neoliberal, The Adam Smith Institute and libertariansforums.com.
Modern usage[edit | edit source]
Social[edit | edit source]
"Pull yourself up by your bootstraps", "sort yourself out", "women aren't responsible for men's happiness" etc. are other neoliberal phrases that suggests that people or groups should succeed by themselves without outside help. This is a common interjection by economic conservatives against the poor, and also by Chadsplainers and incelphobes against incelibates. Incels might also be reprimanded for supposed poverty or low social status, in a more conventional 'neoliberal' tone. Even people who claim to oppose neoliberal attitudes (such as many anti-incels; the ones who identify as left-wing politically) will often obliviously take such an attitude towards incels.
Political[edit | edit source]
Self-described neoliberals use the term to describe a sort of ideological middling between those who want to dramatically reduce the role of government in addressing systemic societal problems and those who believe in a bare-bones welfare state. Resulting in a kind of public policy which tries to maximally deregulate economic markets and also promotes lower taxation, except for that necessary to fund a small array of minimally funded social programs. Neoliberalism in this context is similar to a subset of libertarianism called 'minarchism'. The difference between neolibs and minarchists being that minarchists may only favor a military and do not have a default stance on social institutions other than government.
History[edit | edit source]
Politically, "neoliberal", was used by politicos to self-describe since the beginning of the 20th century, particularly in symposiums for compromise between Austrian Economists and welfare state types. The term is seeing a resurgence in self-identification, starting perhaps with the Adam Smith Institute, a UK think tank which changed it's label from 'libertarian' to 'neoliberal'. It did so because the word 'libertarian' it felt implied an anarchist bent it did not have. The think tank says it identifies as neoliberal because they consider themselves, paraphrased, 'classical liberals who believe the world is the best it's ever been'.
You might say that neoliberals are classical liberals with smartphones, internet access and frequent flier miles
—Adam Smith institute on why it self-labels as neoliberal
The resurgence in self-identification then spread to the reddit.com/r/neoliberal subreddit and the neoliberalpodcast.org, which recently featured incelphobe Zach Beauchamp of Vox to speak about incels.
Economic neoliberalism has become a popular target of the left. Fascists and reactionaries are also increasingly attacking, "neoliberalism", verbatim for the open-border and small-government stances of political neoliberals.