[an error occurred while processing this directive]
About
Content
Store
Forum

Rebirth of Reason
War
People
Archives
Objectivism

Post to this threadMark all messages in this thread as readMark all messages in this thread as unreadBack one pagePage 0Page 1Page 2Page 3Page 4Page 5Forward one pageLast Page


Sanction: 6, No Sanction: 0
Sanction: 6, No Sanction: 0
Post 80

Monday, April 26 - 9:47amSanction this postReply
Bookmark
Link
Edit
Jim,

We do have a monopoly of law. We have one constitution, not more than one. We have one Supreme Court. We have one Federal legislature. And in each state there is also but one state constitution and one set of state laws.

We have people that want to interpet a constitutional amemdment differently, or even change it or ignore it. That does not mean that there are multiple constitutions available in the U.S.

The state of Arizona just passed a law regarding illegal immigrants and it appears to be in conflict with federal law. In a sense that conflict could be seen as competition - but only in the sense that people will line up on the two sides to support their agendas and it will go through the courts, and it will be resolved. The competion here is between two different camps that differ in how they want that one law to be. It is not a system of multiple sets of competing laws. It is a single set of laws where there is some struggle and ambiguity surrounding a change in one of the laws. It will resolve to a single law applied in a geographic area.

The fact that an official in one state interprets the constitution to suit his agenda does not mean that there are two or more suppliers of law, or two or more sets of law that are in competition. A difference in interpretation will be resolved according to one set of laws - appeals, supreme court granting certiorari, etc.

If two children are arguing about who gets to hold a toy truck, that competition between them (two different agendas) does not translate into their being two different toy trucks.

Please stop and think about how pitiful it is that this is your argument in favor of anarchy - that we don't have a monopoly of laws, because there is disagreement in the wind about one of the laws, a disagreement that is so strong that some officials have chosen to interpet that law differently. That's sad. Think about it. Even if the degree of mis-interpretation grew so great in the frequency of occurence and over such a high percentage of laws that it was like having multiple sets of laws, then it would be as evil as anarchy.
------------

You are still clinging to the fallacy that competion between purveyors of force is a good thing, and that it will lead to greater freedom. Consider what you refer to as the "present anarchical international structure": The nations are not competing in a FREE market (e.g., nations are not constrained from exercising initiatory force against their citizens). Their failure to satisfy their 'customers' does not put them out of business (ask a North Korean). It is not competition between different nations that governs tomorrow's freedom or lack there of. People voting with their feet will not turn the tide if the initiation of force is permitted to be part of the 'competition.'
------------

p.s., You are mischaracterizing one of my arguments. I did not say that I am a proponent of one world government - what I said is that I am in favor of an objective set of laws that are based upon individual rights. Given that, the more geography they encompass the better. I don't care about the number of square mile encompassed, or the particular checks and balances put in place, so long as they are effective in maintaining the adherence of the law to the principles of objectivity and individual rights.




Sanction: 5, No Sanction: 0
Sanction: 5, No Sanction: 0
Post 81

Monday, April 26 - 3:04pmSanction this postReply
Bookmark
Link
Edit
Steve: "You are still clinging to the fallacy that competion between purveyors of force is a good thing, and that it will lead to greater freedom. Consider what you refer to as the "present anarchical international structure": The nations are not competing in a FREE market (e.g., nations are not constrained from exercising initiatory force against their citizens) ...

p.s., You are mischaracterizing one of my arguments. I did not say that I am a proponent of one world government"

Steve -- I didn't say that you are a direct proponent of one world government. To my recollection, no one here has ever advocated that. I was bringing that up to point out that what you characterize as a "fallacy" -- that competition between purveyors of force, and purveyors of non-force -- is a GOOD thing, and not a fallacy at all.

But, if you consider it a "fallacy" that competition between governments is a good thing, then what is the alternative BUT a one world government? Are you saying that it isn't a good thing that people in authoritarian hellholes like North Korea or Cuba can't escape to their competitors in the U.S. or South Korea if they can get past the border guards trying to prevent their escape?

Are you saying that Cuba is not competing with the U.S. government for who has control over their citizens? That before the fall of the Berlin Wall, that East Germany wasn't competing with West Germany for who controlled their citizens?

So, if such competition between nations is good -- if people in authoritarian countries benefit from having competitors who they can move to (or escape to) -- wouldn't even more competition and less distance to move be even better? Wouldn't it be great if, within the U.S., there was a really weak federal government and thousands of states, each just a mile or two in diameter, all intensely competing against each other for their citizens? Wouldn't such competition result in greater freedom, since if one mini-state tried to raise taxes, it would be much easier than it is now to move to a better state? Wouldn't it be great if, within a few dozen miles from where you live, there was an extremely minarchical mini-state you could move to and get exactly the government you desire? Wouldn't you be more free if you had those choices?




Sanction: 5, No Sanction: 0
Sanction: 5, No Sanction: 0
Post 82

Monday, April 26 - 3:16pmSanction this postReply
Bookmark
Link
Edit
John: "But in any case, I think you're straining too much to understand the philosophical principles here. A city-state is no more intrinsically moral than a nation-state. The size of the geography does not presuppose any philosophical position. It just depends on whether that state respects individual rights."

I think perhaps you are not fully understanding the implications of what I'm driving at re: the size of states. See the above post, where I argue that with thousands upon thousands of mini-states within the U.S. borders and a very weak central government, you could choose to live in a place near to where you live now that has what you might consider the ideal government.

So, no, a city-state is not intrinsically more moral than a nation-state -- but if you have thousands upon thousands of city-states to choose from, then you can get to pick the most moral of those thousands of city-states to live in. You don't live in the average of all communities in the U.S., you live in the particular community you live in, and with tinier and tinier city-states, the odds that a city-state that would be ideal for you -- a city-state founded upon Objectivist principles that rigorously respected individual rights -- would be in relatively close geographic proximity to you would increase to nearly a 100% probability.

If you accept that premise, that such intense competition would result in more personal freedom than you have now, then the logical conclusion is that this could be carried out to even smaller units yet, and that some of those tiny units could band together with a corporation or three to enforce their code of laws -- and then you're at anarcho-capitalism.




Sanction: 12, No Sanction: 0
Sanction: 12, No Sanction: 0
Sanction: 12, No Sanction: 0
Post 83

Monday, April 26 - 4:18pmSanction this postReply
Bookmark
Link
Edit
Jim,

You are talking about competition in general, as if there was a value in competition. There is not. There is a value if the competition is constrained to competing for the customers who can exercercise free and informed choice and no one is permitted to use force. There is no value if the competition is in who can be the most ruthless in applying force to get their way.

With Cuba and the United States, for example, there isn't a competition between two suppliers of law, since the Cubans cannot choose American laws (unless they leave their country which they are not permitted to do). I can buy Nike or Rebok - I don't have to leave the country to do that. Nike doesn't have armed guard that will shoot me if I'm seen walking towards the Rebok store. Two different kinds of competition. One has value the other does not.
----------

As a side note: It isn't entirely valid to talk about governments, like Cuba and the US, as being in an international state of anarchy - these are nations, not people, and the terms anarchy, minarchy, oligarchy, etc. are political states that people live under. Logical errors are bound to arise when the terms are misused in that fashion.
----------

I said that competition based upon force is bad. That doesn't mean that I'm in favor of one world government. When you have competiton in a market that is free of force, then you get all those good results we both want to see. You said Cuba is in competition for who is in control of their citizens, and that before the fall of the Berlin wall the same was true between East and West Berlin. These are examples of where competition uses force to keep the citizens from exercising their choices. That is a bad thing and there is no invisible hand of guiding the totalitarian state in the direction of freedom because of the people escaping (supply, demand and price are not allowed to interact via choice). Without a free market you don't have beneficial competition. Each person that escapes causes the corrupt regimes to put more control on their borders. You have positive feedback loops going in the wrong direction. Kim Jong-il doesn't look at escaping citizens and decide to do something to make the remaining citizens more happy. He doesn't have to because he can use force. Free markets, which is what you are mistakenly thinking are at work here, would force him to make his citizen's happy. But it isn't a free market - it is a 'competition' where force is permitted. The dictator 'competes' with his citizens as to who will prevail and he gets to use as much force as he wants.
------------------

You said, "Wouldn't it be great if, within a few dozen miles from where you live, there was an extremely minarchical mini-state you could move to and get exactly the government you desire? Wouldn't you be more free if you had those choices?"

Governments prohibit and or confiscate. That is all they can do. Those activities are constrained to serve individual rights or they aren't. Everyone here agrees that if there are laws they should be objective, and if there are laws, they should be based upon individual rights. If you get these you don't want some other state to have a different set of laws. Your example guarantees some states that have rights violations and they get to use force in their competition - who stops them? Not the federal goverment, or there wouldn't be the 'competition' you call for. Because force is involved, over time they would begin to restrict the rights to change states (it's what national governments do).

Focus on the concept of competition and see how it is two totally different animals depending upon whether or not force is precluded.





Sanction: 6, No Sanction: 0
Sanction: 6, No Sanction: 0
Post 84

Monday, April 26 - 5:38pmSanction this postReply
Bookmark
Link
Edit
Jim I think you're focusing on non-essentials here and unnecessary speculation. The size of the geography of the state is irrelevant. Your best hope is to try and change the culture you exist in into respecting individual rights. How big the geography is, well is just simply a non-essential to the philosophical principles we're talking about.



Sanction: 17, No Sanction: 0
Sanction: 17, No Sanction: 0
Sanction: 17, No Sanction: 0
Post 85

Tuesday, April 27 - 8:52pmSanction this postReply
Bookmark
Link
Edit
In the initial quote, the credibility disappears when the author says "arbitrarily".  There clearly is a distinction between the two kinds of services, and it is one that anarchists often ignore (intentionally or not).

The issue is that these 'services' require the use of force.  Yes, the protection agency may work for Group 1, but to actually provide the service, they must use force against Group 2.  Anarchists like to focus on Group 1.  The protection agency is just providing a service to Group 1, and like any other service, they can contract the terms of the service completely within the setting of a free market.  By focusing your attention there, you move your focus away from the use of force being applied to Group 2.  If you ignore what the service involves, it can superficially look like any other service.  The claim that the distinction is "arbitrary" only sounds reasonable if you ignore what the service involves (using force) and instead focus on the relationship between the service-provider and the customer.

When you look at the service that's provided, suddenly the picture changes.  The justification for government is to make sure only appropriate uses of force are permitted (i.e., retaliatory force).  I've argued elsewhere that the central role that government provides is a process to determine and agree upon whether any particular use of force is legitimate or not.  Any "service" that uses force against others must be either outright illegal (such as a business that commits fraud), or (in the case of private security and the like) must heavily rely on the government mechanism to ensure the use of force is appropriate.  While these private agencies do not need to be directly controlled by the government or funded through taxation, there is certainly a degree of connectedness that doesn't exist with other kinds of businesses.  Every 'service' provided must be individually and explicitly sanctioned by the government process to determine if it is legitimate or not.

So focusing merely on the client/service-provider relationship obscures the significant feature.  It also allows you to focus on issues like funding of services, competition, etc., without dealing with the substantial issues.




Post 86

Wednesday, April 28 - 1:32amSanction this postReply
Bookmark
Link
Edit
Joseph: "The justification for government is to make sure only appropriate uses of force are permitted (i.e., retaliatory force)."

The problem is that this is a theoretical justification, but in practice, in the real world, the politicians who are elected and run governments tend to use a lot of inappropriate force, and escalate these uses over long periods of time from the founding of a minarchy.

This country started off as a minarchy, and just a few years later the Articles of Confederation were scrapped for the less minarchic Constitution, and then layers of statism kept getting added, and then the process of increasing statism really took off in the early 1900s.

Does anyone here feel that any level of government in the U.S. primarily uses retaliatory force rather than initiation of force? I sure don't.



Post 87

Wednesday, April 28 - 8:17amSanction this postReply
Bookmark
Link
Edit
The government being unjust does not imply that anarchy is the solution.

I think we moved from minarchy to statism due to equal weighted democracy. I think tax paid/voluntarily contributed weighted democracy would lead to less oppression of the masses.

(Edited by Dean Michael Gores on 4/28, 8:22am)




Sanction: 12, No Sanction: 0
Sanction: 12, No Sanction: 0
Sanction: 12, No Sanction: 0
Post 88

Wednesday, April 28 - 10:31amSanction this postReply
Bookmark
Link
Edit
Jim wrote,
Does anyone here feel that any level of government in the U.S. primarily uses retaliatory force rather than initiation of force? I sure don't.
No, the government that we have now is statist, but it doesn't have to be. The answer is to persuade people that the proper function of government is the protection and defense of their rights. It's not an easy sell, but if you can persuade people to dismantle the entire government, you can certainly persuade them to limit its function to the protection of their rights. The latter is a lot more feasible than selling them on the idea of no government whatsoever!

Besides, what leads you to believe that anarchism will eliminate or reduce the initiation of physical force, when by design, it would sanction its initiation, because it would allow conflicting bodies of law to operate within the same geographical area? If one of these bodies of law respected individual rights, the other would necessarily violate them.

- Bill




Sanction: 18, No Sanction: 0
Sanction: 18, No Sanction: 0
Sanction: 18, No Sanction: 0
Post 89

Wednesday, April 28 - 11:18amSanction this postReply
Bookmark
Link
Edit
Jim, you seem to think that arguing against the current government is an argument in favor of anarchy. But that assumes two things that aren't true.

First, it assumes those are the only two choices, so discrediting one only leaves the other. That's not true. Those arguing for a minimal government are not arguing for the status quo.

The second false assumption is that the arguments used against the current government don't apply to anarchy. If you complain about governments being corrupt as proof against minarchy, than we can point to the violence in Somalia (as one example) as proof against anarchy. If you argue that governments get corrupted by there power, we can argue that that more than equally applies in an anarchy. If you argue a large government requires taxation, we could argue that 50 smaller governments would also require taxation. If you argue democracy fails because the people seem to want to wield force against each other, we could point out that anarchy would have the same issue, without any of the checks on that abuse that a constitutional republic has.

Too much of the anarchist argument is based on the false premise that arguing against one thing is arguing for another. It permits them to ignore the glaring flaws in their proposed system.



Sanction: 23, No Sanction: 0
Sanction: 23, No Sanction: 0
Sanction: 23, No Sanction: 0
Post 90

Wednesday, April 28 - 12:26pmSanction this postReply
Bookmark
Link
Edit
Jim, the problems with the current government are real, but it seems to me that you're missing the point of most of the debaters. If you understood the point, you'd see how your statements appear only as a distraction. It may be convincing to other anarchists who also don't get the point, but it is utterly unconvincing to us because it is essentially irrelevant to the argument.

In the case of posts 85 and 86, I described why the distinction between these two services is not arbitrary, and how the use of force as a service fundamentally differs from other services. Your response ignored the entire distinction and the basis for the distinction. You tried to shift the focus back to the problems of minarchy, specifically the problem of possible corruption. But you've ignored the implications of the argument. You missed the whole point.

Looking at the argument again, we recognize certain needs or requirements. First, we have rights and we need to protect those. Second, an initiation of force against others in a society is a real threat to our own rights. We can't simply let people commit any crime that ends in murder and throw up our hands saying "well, they didn't initiate force against me.....yet". Third, we're not omniscient with universally accepted views of what is an isn't an initiation of force. Together, it means that when someone uses force against another, we need a way to determine if that use of force was appropriate or not.

And more importantly, we need some mechanism/process to decide as a group. That's because if we all come to radically different conclusions and act on them, the lack of agreement will create more violence. If A is mugging B in a parking lot and shoots B, C may witness this and kill A. D may come in thinking C murdered A, and kill C. Etc., etc. Time isn't what prevents this. The facts may not be obvious and known to all parties. Instead, we create a process where the facts are investigated, analyzed, and a judgment is made. We have a need for this process. The cost of not having it is a perpetual fear that some other party will come in with insufficient knowledge and retaliate. We have the need to use retaliatory force, and so we have a need for significant assurance that we won't be retaliated against for using the retaliatory force. While there will always be criminals who initiate force, we need a mechanism to make sure that law-abiding citizens aren't pitted against one another as well.

One could try to rebut some of the requirements for this argument. Some have tried to suggest that we can only retaliate if force is used against us directly, for instance. They're wrong, but at least they're trying. Without a rebuttal, the question should be how does this argument apply to anarchism?

The first thing to note is that in the anarchy ideal, we have protection agencies that defend their clients. Who do they protect them from? Generally, they have to protect them from people who aren't clients of the protection agency. It should be obvious they can't simply restrict their use of retaliatory force to clients. Not only would it leave their clients completely vulnerable to outsiders, but as soon as a client ended up initiating force against another client, they could simply "opt out" from punishment by leaving the agency. So for the agency to provide any actual service, it must be able to use retaliatory force against non-members.

That creates two problems, one more obvious than the other. First, the "criminal" may be a paying member of another agency. This is the obvious problem, as suddenly for this agency to use retaliatory force, they must either get permission from the other agency, or they must wage war.

The second problem goes back to the original argument. To protect their own citizens, they can't simply allow criminals (or criminal agencies) to run around initiating force against anyone. They can't simply remain neutral, saying "it's not my problem", as war breaks out around them. As the potential threats increase, their ability to protect their clients diminishes. This is true if the two protection agencies disagree and wage war. It's true if a protection agency initiates force against a third party. And it's true if the protection agency coerces its own members.

They need a way of determining which uses of force are appropriate, and which are not. They need to know when their use of force will be viewed as legitimate by others, and when it will be viewed as an initiation of force with a violent response.

Some anarchists are pacifists, so they think retaliatory force is merely optional. This allows them to ignore these conflict of opinion. If there is ever disagreement about the appropriateness of a use of force, the parties involved can simply not use force in that case. But if you view retaliatory force as a necessity, if you view an initiation of force as something you can't simply ignore because it is an attack on the rights of the individual and a threat to every other, these differences of opinion can and will become serious problems.

Once the anarchists figure out a way of dealing with these issues, they stop being anarchists. Once they admit there must be a process to determine what is and isn't an appropriate use of force, they are arguing for a de facto government.

This is the issue, and the argument against anarchy. That's why it is a complete distraction to argue that a minarchy can become corrupt over time. It ignores the fundamental issue with anarchy. It doesn't address the problem, it just tries to change the subject. And on top of that, it doesn't apply the same reasoning to anarchy. Can protection agencies be corrupted? Yes. Can whatever process they have to determine what is appropriate or inappropriate be corrupted? Yes. If there is not widespread agreement among the populace that the initiation of force is wrong, will the anarchic system also have bad "laws"? Yes.

You can't just ignore the issue or sidestep it. If the only practical way for an anarchy to work is to form a de facto government to decide which uses of force are appropriate or not, it means that anarchy as a theory is completely broken.






Sanction: 5, No Sanction: 0
Sanction: 5, No Sanction: 0
Post 91

Wednesday, April 28 - 3:33pmSanction this postReply
Bookmark
Link
Edit
Joseph Rowlands wrote: " Instead, we create a process where the facts are investigated, analyzed, and a judgment is made. We have a need for this process. The cost of not having it is a perpetual fear that some other party will come in with insufficient knowledge and retaliate."



Joseph, you know that I recently earned a bachelor of science degree in criminology.  Last week, I completed a master of arts in social science.  For that concentration in global crime, I added classes in international economics and geographic information systems.  I also had a graduate class in miscarriage of justice. I assure you that mistakes are not just random happenstance, but are indemic to the system.  This is not my personal theory.  According to a series of statistical studies (New York Times story here) by University of Michigan Prof. Samuel R. Gross, there may be TWO MILLION wrongfully convicted persons in prison right now. 

This is objectively required by the facts of reality as the criminal justice system works on the "Soviet agriculture" model.

Fred Zain and Joyce Gilchrist always produced whatever evidence the police needed ... and juries believed them...  Jennifer Thompson carefully identifed her rapist as Ronald Cotton (twice) and now they go around the country together warning people about the fragile nature of eye-witness testimony.  Yet eye-witness testimony is the most compelling to a jury. 

The elements of a miscarriage of justice are known.
  • Police zealousness.
  • Prosecutorial misconduct.
  • Jailhouse snitches.
  • Eye-witness errors.
  • Falacious lab results.  (Finger prints have never passed the Daubert Test.  Think of what that means.) 
  • Coerced confessions.
Anything you read about Moscow Show Trials or the Nuremberg Laws applies here because these systems share the same metaphysical, epistemological and ethical premises.  Again, Joseph, as this is a collectivist-altruist-mysticist modality, no other outcome is possible.  If you want justice, you must help me work this out from the ground up starting with first principles.  You cannot achieve justice by advocating Keynesian-style reforms for a Soviet-style system.

(Edited by Michael E. Marotta on 4/28, 3:34pm)




Sanction: 5, No Sanction: 0
Sanction: 5, No Sanction: 0
Post 92

Wednesday, April 28 - 3:47pmSanction this postReply
Bookmark
Link
Edit
John Armaos Post 12:  You do not have a right to any particular good or service. That includes police protection. A monopoly of law does not mean a monopoly of service. It is not anarchy to have competing police agencies so long as they abide by the law, and specifically law that forbids the initiation of force, and has a remedy for when that law is broken. However, you do not have the right to design your own law that sanctions the initiation of force.
Steve Wolfer Post 28:  Technically, you can have firms compete to supply the police functions. Same for the courts. We have security firms, and the courts could let security firms compete for contracts, and we have private arbitration firms. We could also have a mercenary army. But I think that these are minor points and not of much interest. The thing that is important is the monopoly on the law that is required. After that is understood it is more of a business decision as to what is the most effective way to implement the laws.

Therefore, the police exist, not to protect your rights, not to provide you with protection of any kind, but only to protect the state monopoly on making laws.


Actually, I think that the matter needs to be analyzed more closely, as it seems to me that the military is supposed to protect the state, while the police protect the people.  That is the theory behind posse comitatus.  Perhaps Steve or perhaps John do not accept posse comtitatus and advocate martial law -- an objective law, of course, but an enforced monopoly nonetheless.

Here in Michigan and eight other states, there is no capital punishment.  The state does not have the right to take a life.  But the police do.  The police office as an individual has more power than the state as an institution.  Is this objective law?  Is this the worst of applied anarchy?  (If you think that is a contradiction, consider the economic chaos that results from economic planning.  The principle is the same.) 

(Note also that prosecutors and juries also act without culpability for their errors.)

(Edited by Michael E. Marotta on 4/28, 3:58pm)




Sanction: 18, No Sanction: 0
Sanction: 18, No Sanction: 0
Sanction: 18, No Sanction: 0
Post 93

Wednesday, April 28 - 4:00pmSanction this postReply
Bookmark
Link
Edit
I'll post one more on the topic.

How would an anarchy work in practice? Specifically, what would a stable "anarchy" look like. If we start with the so-called "anarcho-capitalism" description, we might identify some of the issues and figure out how they would be solved eventually.

First, what happens when a protection agency decides it won't allow its "clients" to defect. They could potentially sign up for a different agency, but that agency would be forced to make a tough decision. If they accept the new clients, they'll have to defend them against the other "protection" agency. That's just asking for a fight. In the short term, its probably better to avoid such a fight, just as its better in the short term for individuals to avoid a conflict. If a man sees a woman being mugged, it's likely in his short term interest to avoid the situation undetected, although he would likely recognize that if everyone did that (including police), we'd have a much worse problem.

So in the short term, the agencies might decide it's easier to avoid problems like clients that are "owned" by another agency. Similarly, they might find it beneficial to sacrifice some of their own clients for peace. If a client gets robbed, it might be easier to reimburse them directly instead of fighting with another agency.

But none of these strategies work for long. The aggressor agency won't stop at enslaving their own clients. They might start claiming ownership of anyone who doesn't have an agency at the moment. Then they might pick a few members from weaker organizations who are afraid to fight back. And as their regime increases, they might solidify their power by removing other competitors, sabotaging them, or threatening them.

The longer term interest is the same as individuals face. Instead of facing enemies alone, they need to band together with other like-minded people or organizations and resist the aggressors. And the earlier they do that, the better. They don't need to wait until they are personally attacked. They can do it at the first sign of inappropriate violence.

This kind of alliance would become a de facto government.

Or take another path. Since almost every dispute involves two agencies, they need some method of agreeing whether a specific use of force is appropriate or not. If either agency were the sole decider, it would encourage a lack of objectivity. But to agree with each other, they have to have a common definition of what is appropriate and what is not. They need to create a series of rules/laws that they both agree with. And then they probably still need a third party to decide the individual merits of a case.

These two functions are legislative and judicial. They need to determine the laws ahead of time, and they need a method of judging the merits of individual cases. When two agencies interact, they create all the trappings of a government.

If Agency A creates an agreement with Agency B, they have to come to a separate agreement with Agency C. Will it be the same rules? In the short term, it could be different, but remember that they eventually need to use force against someone to provide the service to their clients. Imagine the criminal steals from you. Your agency wants to arrest him, and has a deal with his agency to outlaw stealing. If he can simply switch to a different agency that doesn't have theft as illegal, your agency is once again stuck with the choice to pursue him (and wage war) or take a short term strategy that will only make it more common.

The long term strategy is creating a uniform set of laws the everyone uses. This could be done piecemeal, bringing in one agency after another. But eventually, they'd have to decide that any holdouts would have to agree or be squashed. They can't let people initiate force against their clients (or they won't have any) and claim immunity because they don't think it's illegal.

Again, the long term stability point is a de facto government where the laws are universal, and the individual judgment process is agreed upon.

Is it possible to logically escape this? In order to protect the rights of your clients, you need to wield retaliatory force against others. You can either have them agree, or you can force them. Anarchy is the proper description of the system before a long term stability has been found. Up until then, individuals or agencies can initiate force, and there is little anyone can do to stop them, with all short term options being similar to what individuals would have to deal with without any government or protection agencies.

Eventually, the same justifications for individuals forming a protection agency would apply to the protection agencies and have the form together to protect against aggressors. At that point, you have a government.

There are some key differences though. The stability point can be found in a system that doesn't recognize or respect all rights. Also, when the organizations formulate rules to govern them, they may not respect the rights of their own clients and may be tempted to collude to trap them. And finally, to the extent that they do create laws to govern them, the agencies will be the ones casting the votes, not the people. The "government" may not be controlled by a written constitution, may not have elections, and may not have many of the other important checks on government power.

Anarchy is unstable, and even if you can stabilize it by creating a government, there's no reason to believe the government by evolution will be better than the government designed to protect rights.



Sanction: 12, No Sanction: 0
Sanction: 12, No Sanction: 0
Sanction: 12, No Sanction: 0
Post 94

Wednesday, April 28 - 4:02pmSanction this postReply
Bookmark
Link
Edit
Michael, you should read my post 89. There is no reason to believe that anarchy will avoid any of these problems, and every reason to believe it will have many other disastrous ones. Will eye witness evidence magically stop being valued in an anarchist society? Will we suddenly have omniscience and always know who is guilty and who isn't?

If you want to solve problems, you need to identify their real source. Simply arguing for an ill-defined alternative who's best feature is that you're not sure in which of many ways it will be a disaster is not convincing.

There absolutely are problems with the current judicial system. But no system can avoid the issue of judgment (except pacifism, which avoids the problems by letting the inmates run the asylum). And there is no reason to believe a system created through compromise and opposing interests will create a more reliable judicial system.



Sanction: 5, No Sanction: 0
Sanction: 5, No Sanction: 0
Post 95

Wednesday, April 28 - 4:06pmSanction this postReply
Bookmark
Link
Edit
Joseph, how would a "free market" work?  What if a corporation sold poison food and bribed judges?  What if Company A drove Company B out of business by telling lies?    What if someone was starving and no one wanted to give them a job?

The list is endless.

Either you accept the efficacy of freedom or you do not.




Sanction: 6, No Sanction: 0
Sanction: 6, No Sanction: 0
Post 96

Wednesday, April 28 - 4:06pmSanction this postReply
Bookmark
Link
Edit
Michael

Therefore, the police exist, not to protect your rights, not to provide you with protection of any kind, but only to protect the state monopoly on making laws.


I don't understand how you conclude this from my comments. A police agency protecting the state in lieu of protecting rights implies it is not concerned with the individuals they've been hired to protect. This would be indistinguishable from a tyrannical government, that uses police as a means to violate the rights of others, which is precisely the scenario that anarchists do not wish to preclude from their arguments, since any kind of law is fine, regardless of whether it actually recognizes the rights of an individual or not.

A police officer would be a duly authorized agent for an individual, someone who is hired to protect that individual's rights. The law should that which defines what those rights are and what the appropriate response is for a violation of those rights. It should not sanction corruption, a miscarriage of justice, or police brutality. I do not advocate martial law, which is a specific kind of law that violates the rights of the individual through among many things, restricting the free travel of individuals.

I also notice you are still side-stepping the issues that Joe raises. You point to existing corruption and miscarriages of justices, yet you leave out why anarchy would preclude such a thing?



Sanction: 6, No Sanction: 0
Sanction: 6, No Sanction: 0
Post 97

Wednesday, April 28 - 4:16pmSanction this postReply
Bookmark
Link
Edit
Michael:

Either you accept the efficacy of freedom or you do not.


The problem is the definition of freedom as told by an anarchist. Which seems to mean to have criminals be free from retaliatory force, to have accusers be free from proving their accusations of initiations of force made against them through any kind of transparent, due process.



Sanction: 12, No Sanction: 0
Sanction: 12, No Sanction: 0
Sanction: 12, No Sanction: 0
Post 98

Wednesday, April 28 - 4:18pmSanction this postReply
Bookmark
Link
Edit
Michael, you want to treat the free market like a religion. There are specific reasons why the free market produces positive results. You want to ignore that foundation. Each of the questions you asked is easily answered. We don't have to just take it on faith and pray to the gods of libertarianism to grant us their bounty. You try to imply that the questions I asked were of the same type. But they're not.

The free market does not perform miracles. It does not grant omniscience to those who pray. It does not take a difficult epistemological problem (how to tell if someone is guilty of committing a crime) and magically make the difficulty go away. It does not prevent the possibility of errors. It does not exist independent of the political system. It does not create angels out of men when you call them businessmen.

Anarchism is a religion, substituting the "free market"(which to them is a magical force in the universe) for a god. Like other religions, people believe in it to avoid pain (taxes in this case, death in the normal case). They want to believe it. They have no justification for believing it, but they're willing to construct elaborate systems in order to give the impression it is well thought out.



Sanction: 6, No Sanction: 0
Sanction: 6, No Sanction: 0
Post 99

Thursday, April 29 - 10:08amSanction this postReply
Bookmark
Link
Edit
Michael,

You completely ignored the arguments that Joe made.

You say, "Either you accept the efficacy of freedom or you do not."

Joe is right, you are muttering 'Freedom' like a mystical mantra. Freedom in a political context is freedom from the initiation of force. That happens because structures of some sort are in place that make it so - not by magic. There must be a way to take the initiation of force (and theft and fraud) out of the equation before you can see the 'magic' of free enterprise take place. The beneficial results of a free market are because people in an environment where NIOF is maintained can pursue their self-interest, but only in ways that others are willing to engage in - this makes possible the win-win nature of voluntary transactions. Instead of using force to divide up a fixed quantity of pie, they create a profit for each party making a bigger pie in the process.

You have never shown how anarchy can provide that environment - you can't, because it can't.
-----------

It makes little sense to discuss this with you... not just because you choose duck the key objections to your positions, but because your arguments are too bizarre to have real meaning or to take seriously. You said, "Here in Michigan and eight other states, there is no capital punishment. The state does not have the right to take a life. But the police do. The police office as an individual has more power than the state as an institution. Is this objective law? Is this the worst of applied anarchy?" I'd bet that everyone here recognized that the police do NOT have the right in Michigan to initiate a killing and only have the right to use deadly force when if is required for self-defense of themselves or others. And with all of your degrees, we know that you know this. Yet you wrote that anyway. What are we to think? That you consider us idiots? Or, that you don't care if what you say is nonsense? Or that you don't even realize what nonsense you put out? You go on to call the police and structure of state government in Michigan as applied anarchy. That just says that we are reading the writing of someone who chooses to treat words as if they had no meaning. I for one would heartily encourage you keep any arguments regarding anarchy in the Dissent area.



Post to this threadBack one pagePage 0Page 1Page 2Page 3Page 4Page 5Forward one pageLast Page
[an error occurred while processing this directive]


User ID Password or create a free account.