Recent comments

  • AtlasAikido's picture
    AtlasAikido 3 years 2 weeks ago
    Where's the State?
    Page Jim Davies
    The Covenant of Unanimous Consent confirms to me that I should stay away from some and trade with others. This is hardly anti-social; and what and who I choose to talk to makes a difference (last time I looked). I do not talk to sociopaths (who are antithetical to the Covenant of Unanimous Consent).... Follow the links and come to your own decisions Dear Reader, Clearly for some *I* nor anyone else on this site of individuals has a clue about *anything* regarding living personal freedom nor agoras or market places including Browne, Thoreau, Smith, Rand, Davidson... This discussion which some here ARE continuing to sidetrack is that the purpose of such things as the Covenant is NOT to CONTROL the government and those who still think and act on "We"-isms (*much like statists and sociopaths*), but to provide a form of SELF-governance. And the young Neil Smith (1985) used this distinction of *I* governance vs *We* government when writing the Covenant ( http://tinyurl.com/Galts-Oath-and-the-Covenant ). Last time I looked the folks who speak of "We"-isms have no authentic self. In-fact they have no respect for boundaries as they speak for what is good others; they impose on others AND they try to control others using We-ism 's and by definition are primary and secondary sociopaths who want to rule/control/tear down others and the world.
  • WhiteIndian's picture
    WhiteIndian 3 years 2 weeks ago Page Mark Davis
    The man who goes alone dies more. But if killing yourself is an "individual objective," then, hey, have at it, Atlas. Has the record shown that single-pilot (SP) flying is more risky than flights with two-pilot crews? In a word, yes. Turbine Edition: Single-Pilot Safety The risks of riding solo Aircraft Owners and Pilot's Association http://www.aopa.org/pilot/turbine/safety0810.html
  • WhiteIndian's picture
    WhiteIndian 3 years 2 weeks ago
    Where's the State?
    Page Jim Davies
    As you declare your antisocial ideology, are you aware that "sociopathy" is defined as Antisocial personality disorder? And can you explain how "'we'-ism" is somehow "antisocial?" Do you even know what "we" means?
  • AtlasAikido's picture
    AtlasAikido 3 years 2 weeks ago Page Mark Davis
    The Group ("We"-ism) Trap is the assumption that greater strength can be achieved by sharing. Just the opposite happens: Individual objectives are watered down, time and effort are wasted in arranging compromises, and individual incentive is reduced. The individual becomes much less flexible and mobile (perhaps lichen like is a good analog), because he must deal with others before getting on with the task at hand. As Thoreau said, "The man who goes alone can start today; but he who travels with another must wait till that other is ready."1 How I Found FREEDOM in an UNFREE WORLD A Handbook for Personal Liberty HARRY BROWNE 25TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION WITH A NEW FOREWORD AND AFTERWORD
  • WhiteIndian's picture
    WhiteIndian 3 years 2 weeks ago Page Mark Davis
    Harry Browne would have done well to check his premises, like studying something along the lines of: Swanson, G. A. (2008), Living systems theory and an entity-systems approach. Systems Research and Behavioral Science, 25: 599–604. Or to simply consider a lichen, a "composite organisms consisting of a symbiotic organism composed of a fungus with a photosynthetic partner." Maybe lichens fell into the group trap; yeah, that's the ticket.
  • AtlasAikido's picture
    AtlasAikido 3 years 2 weeks ago
    Where's the State?
    Page Jim Davies
    Scott, The idea that "somehow" we MUST chose the lesser of two evils--institutionalized evil Vs chaos. One can see thru that false alternative and grasp that the Most Dangerous Superstition as Larken Rose wrote in his book, is the implied or explicit belief in the need for such nightmares in order to provide law and order. It is a myth, superstition, made up, unreal...and the reason why ideas are more powerful than a bullet or a standing army. It is the wrong ideas that supports the whole apparatus of sociopaths. and the right ideas that remove the sanction/complicity of the victim. John Galt's Oath in Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand. "I SWEAR, BY MY LIFE AND MY LOVE OF IT, THAT I WILL NEVER LIVE FOR THE SAKE OF ANOTHER MAN, NOR ASK ANOTHER MAN TO LIVE FOR MINE". In a prior thread discussion the purpose of such things as the Covenant is not to CONTROL the government and those who still think and act on "We"-isms (much like statists and sociopaths), but to provide a form of self-governance. But I have no doubt Jim and Suverans2 will have some good points to make.
  • AtlasAikido's picture
    AtlasAikido 3 years 2 weeks ago Page Mark Davis
    ... THE GROUP TRAP is the belief that you can accomplish more by sharing responsibilities, efforts, and rewards with others than you can by acting on your own. It's an easy trap to fall into. It's a common expression that "in union there is strength." Just the opposite is true, however. You achieve more for yourself when your rewards are dependent upon your own efforts rather than upon the efforts of other people. When you join a group effort to achieve freedom, you waste precious resources on an endeavor that has very little chance of success. In the same way, group efforts are common in businesses, marriages, and even friendships, and there too the Group Trap can cause subtle problems. Groups are not living entities. They don't think or act; only individuals do. And yet, any group effort is based upon the assumption of a group purpose that overrides the individual differences of its members. It's expected that the group will act as a single unit with a unified purpose. Only individuals think—and each one thinks differently. Their interests and desires may overlap, but each person will continue to define his own objectives and have his own opinion concerning the best way to achieve those objectives. Perhaps each person entering a group unconsciously assumes that it will act in unison for his objectives and by his methods. But every other participant probably has a similar assumption regarding his ideas. What they get instead will inevitably be a compromise. The individual's goals and his concept of the best methods will be automatically compromised before anything happens to further his objectives. It also means that a certain amount of time and effort will have to be expended to arrange the compromise—again, before anything concrete is done to further the objectives. On the other hand, the individual who acts alone doesn't have to alter his objectives. He can employ the means he considers best suited to the objective, and he doesn't have to waste time and effort trying to arrange a compromise with partners... THE DESPAIR TRAP ...You're in the Despair Trap if you believe that you have to stay where you are and work things out somehow. Or if you believe that you couldn't be any better off if you were to change your situation. Or if you think that the government or society can stop you from being free. You're in the Despair Trap if you think that you'll always be poor because you come from a family that's always been that way. Or when you feel that love relationships must always deteriorate into uneasy compromises. Or when you believe that "people" don't appreciate good products, good ideas, or good individuals. You're in the trap when you think there are too many complications in your life to be able to break out from where you are. Or when you think that freedom and happiness are overrated myths... Excerpted from How I Found FREEDOM in an UNFREE WORLD A Handbook for Personal Liberty HARRY BROWNE 25TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION WITH A NEW FOREWORD AND AFTERWORD
  • Scott Lazarowitz's picture
    Scott Lazarowitz 3 years 2 weeks ago
    Where's the State?
    Page Jim Davies
    Jim, if the State doesn't really exist, then by whom are all those reckless and murderous CIA drone operators employed? On whose behalf are all those cop-thugs enforcing "laws," and what is it that is making those "laws"? Well, if the State doesn't really exist, then neither do Goldman Sachs, Raytheon, BP, and Halliburton.
  • WhiteIndian's picture
    WhiteIndian 3 years 2 weeks ago
    Where's the State?
    Page Jim Davies
    Just because you develop amnesia with your incantations of word-magic, doesn't make human relationships — like crews, families, clubs, churches, or even the sociopolitical typology of the state — magically disappear. Your body's physical phenotype exhibits something biologists call low sexual dimorphism. One of the biological measurements in mammals is canine tooth size. This is because "social behavior," "hierarchy" and "egalitarianism" "sexual selection" are NOT fictions. Your short canine teeth are an evolutionary result of social concepts and relationships. Yes, they're quite real. The level of evasion here is enormous. While Ayn Rand did plenty of it herself, she describes evasion well via John Galt's speech: "...they believe that reality can be altered by the power of the words they do not utter—and their magic tool is the blank-out, the pretense that nothing can come into existence past the voodoo of their refusal to identify it." That describes you and the "state doesn't exist" flakes to a tee. P.S. If everybody developed amnesia, would amnesia exist? It doesn't according to your "litmus test."
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 3 years 2 weeks ago
    Where's the State?
    Page Jim Davies
    G'day Scott Lazaowitz, Hope this helps. FIC'TION, n. [L. fictio, from fingo, to feign.] ...2. That which is feigned, invented or imagined. ~ Webster's 1828 American Dictionary of the English Language Ask yourself, was the STATE "feigned, invented or imagined"[1], and the obvious answer is YES; it therefore can be easily seen that it is, indeed, a fiction. It was first "imagined", then it was "invented", by the use of "feigned" words. Now, when we put that together with this concept... "And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you..." ...we see that it can be a very dangerous fiction. gfywi ____________________________________________________________________ [1] The same holds true, by the way, for "IBM, or any other company or club or church" or "a crew on a ship", a "hunting party", a "married couple" or a "family"; the only thing non-fiction about any them are their individual human members. A good litmus test, to determine if something is fiction, or non-fiction, is to imagine what would happen if every human being on Earth developed amnesia simultaneously. Would a STATE exist (except on paper)? Would a "family" exist? The honest answer is NO; only the individual human beings that once made up these fictions, would exist. gfywi Now, on the other hand, "if every human being on Earth developed amnesia simultaneously", would the Earth stills exist; would the trees still exist; would the sun still exist; would silver still exist? Then these are non-fiction.
  • WhiteIndian's picture
    WhiteIndian 3 years 2 weeks ago Web link Westernerd
    Try not feeding your dog. Then try not paying property taxes. You'll find out who owns what.
  • WhiteIndian's picture
    WhiteIndian 3 years 2 weeks ago
    Where's the State?
    Page Jim Davies
    Does a "crew" on a ship exist? Does a "hunting party" exist? Does a "married couple" exist? Does a "family" exist? Yes; humans are social animals, and behave as such. The "city-State" exists too. However, it's not one of the gratifying social groupings of humans, because The city-State: • Forces hierarchy on human beings who are evolved to be egalitarian • Forces people into Mass Society beyond their evolved neurobiological capacity (Dunbar's Number) • Forces people to abandon evolutionarily stable lifeways.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 3 years 2 weeks ago
    Where's the State?
    Page Jim Davies
    It really does not, Scott, for the reasons I stated. It consists of a bunch of individual criminals (though that term won't actually do, for a "crime" is the fracture of a government law) who ought to be held individually accountable. Thanks Mark, the database idea was an afterthought but it could be useful. I wonder if it could be done. Mark Zuckerberg, are you there?
  • WhiteIndian's picture
    WhiteIndian 3 years 2 weeks ago Page Mark Davis
    Quoting anarcho-primitivist gems. You've come a long way, baby! Next, John Zerzan? The only non-contradictory anarchism is anarcho-primitivism. _____________ Anarchism started to have an ecological view mainly in the writings of American individualist anarchist and transcendentalist Henry David Thoreau. In his book Walden he advocates simple living and self-sufficiency among natural surroundings in resistance to the advancement of industrial civilization. "Many have seen in Thoreau one of the precursors of ecologism and anarcho-primitivism represented today in John Zerzan. For George Woodcock this attitude can be also motivated by certain idea of resistance to progress and of rejection of the growing materialism which is the nature of American society in the mid 19th century." Zerzan himself included the text "Excursions" (1863) by Thoreau in his edited compilation of anti-civilization writings called Against Civilization: Readings and Reflections from 1999. [WIKI: anarcho-primitivism]
  • WhiteIndian's picture
    WhiteIndian 3 years 2 weeks ago Page Mark Davis
    Pining for the Non-State social structure of your Paleolithic ancestors is precisely what everybody is doing here. "Must be frustrating," eh?
  • WhiteIndian's picture
    WhiteIndian 3 years 2 weeks ago Page Mark Davis
    Many people yearn quite eloquently for the Non-State social structure of their Paleolithic ancestors, but nobody considers removing their hand from the agricultural city-Statist (civilization) monkey trap.
  • Scott Lazarowitz's picture
    Scott Lazarowitz 3 years 2 weeks ago
    Where's the State?
    Page Jim Davies
    The State is not fictional. It really exists. The State is the biggest, most well-organized criminal enterprise anywhere. That really is all it is, a criminal organization, consisting of people whose daily existence is to criminally interfere with, intrude upon, commit violence against and murder innocent human beings. And that's it.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 3 years 2 weeks ago Page Mark Davis
    Thank you, AtlasAikido, I've already gleaned a pearl from the first link you gave me. "I please myself with imagining a State at last which can afford to be just to all men, and to treat the individual with respect as a neighbor; which even would not think it inconsistent with its own repose if a few were to live aloof from it, not meddling with it, nor embraced by it, who fulfilled all the duties of neighbors and fellow men." ~ Henry D. Thoreau
  • AtlasAikido's picture
    AtlasAikido 3 years 2 weeks ago Page Mark Davis
    A common example of misunderstanding the "We" vs the "I" is when so-called leaders, managers, and teachers focus their group members--implicitly or explicitly--on "team-work" instead of its causes "individual work of *I*'s". Joint efforts are possible, and necessary to increase productivity and profits. But each person must retain CONTROL over his own responsibilities, efforts and rewards, if any meaningful incentives and effectiveness are to be preserved. Otherwise his individual efforts will become less significant and therefore, less productive. But this downward ratcheting spiral is exactly what so called leaders, managers and teachers set in motion and perpetuate, by restricting and confining individual responsibilities, efforts and rewards, to rules designed primarily to command and control the group and its least innovative and responsible members. Such "Collectivized" "WE" thinking seriously compromises the individual's freedom to think, create and adapt and thus his productivity and ultimately the joint efforts of the division of labor (Billions of humans making trillions of decisions could never be harnessed or thoroughly theorized by even the most brilliant voluntaryist thinkers or free market economists. I try not to use the term, “free market system” anymore, because humans trading goods and services is not a system, it’s what humans do. I have abandoned the use of the word “system” completely). Paraphrased from "How I Found Freedom in an UnFree World" by Harry Browne. And There is No We: Challenge the Premise. http://zerogov.com/?p=2334 Follow the precepts of self governance such as L Neil Smith's Covenant and no government and no "We"-ism will be necessary. Violate the precepts of the Covenant and no amount of government and no amount of "We"-ism will be sufficient.. If ones' own moral code is important enough to state--for one to know explicitly and improve on; and for others to know oneself--without binding them down--then an inter-relationship Covenant could have much valuable application and is hardly the same as "We"-ism parchment worship or "We"-ism magic as some posit. This discussion which some here ARE sidetracking is that the purpose of such things as the Covenant is not to CONTROL the government and those who still think and act on "We"-isms (much like statists and sociopaths), but to provide a form of self-governance. And the young Neil Smith (1985) used this distinction of *I* governance vs *We* government when writing the Covenant ( http://tinyurl.com/Galts-Oath-and-the-Covenant ).
  • WhiteIndian's picture
    WhiteIndian 3 years 2 weeks ago Page Mark Davis
    The premise has been challenged, and debunked. Humans are egalitarian social band animals, as evidenced by biology[1], evolutionary biology[2], anthropological[3], and sociological observation[4], and medicine.[5] There is indeed a "we." Word magic incantations on paper cannot socially-engineer humans to behave like you want them to behave; they behave as they have evolved. _________________________ [1] Hinde, R. A. (1974) Biological Bases of Human Social Behavior. New York: McGraw-Hill. [2] Boehm, C. (2001) Hierarchy in the forest: The evolution of egalitarian behavior. Cambridge: Harvard University Press. [3] Service, E. R. (1975) Origins oft he State and Civilization: The Process of Cultural Evolution. New York: Norton. [4] Fehr, E. & Gächter, S. (2002) Human behaviour: Egalitarian motive and altruistic punishment. Nature 415, pp. 137–140. [5] Henderson, A. S. (1988) An introduction to social psychiatry New York: Oxford University Press medical publications.
  • AtlasAikido's picture
    AtlasAikido 3 years 2 weeks ago Page Mark Davis
    Indeed Jim! There is No We: Challenge the Premise. http://zerogov.com/?p=2334 Follow the precepts of the self governance such as L Neil Smith's Covenant and no government will be necessary. Violate the precepts of the Covenant and no amount of government will be sufficient.... This discussion with some here seem to have forgotten that the purpose of such things as the Covenant is not to CONTROL the government, but to provide a form of self-governance. And the young Neil Smith (1985) used the distinction of governance vs government when writing the Covenant ( http://tinyurl.com/Galts-Oath-and-the-Covenant ).
  • AtlasAikido's picture
    AtlasAikido 3 years 2 weeks ago Page Mark Davis
    Howdy, Suverans2 Re: "There are those who will now say something along the lines of, "If it only defends and protects our natural rights it isn't a government". But, just because it isn't, or even has never been, does that mean that it can't be? They then answer, "If it did only that, then it couldn't be called a 'government'." Fine!! What, pray tell, could it be called? Then substitute that word wherever you find the word "government" when we are discussing a collective organization that does nothing more than defend and protect our natural rights". It would seem the answers to the questions you pose above were answered by Henry David Thoreau and others...At least for me. Classical Liberalism: Fail by Jim Davidson http://www.ncc-1776.org/tle2009/tle544-20091115-07.html Functional Rights: The Elephant in the Parlor, Part II... http://strike-the-root.oncnd.com/91/scarmig/scarmig2.html Word Idolatry http://www.ncc-1776.org/tle2010/tle563-20100328-03.html
  • WhiteIndian's picture
    WhiteIndian 3 years 3 weeks ago Page Mark Davis
    People disestablished from the land (and it's always by aggressive TAKING*) are forced to either submit and work for the agricultural city-Statism (civilization) juggernaut or starve to death. It's just that simple. That's Totalitarian Agriculture, or Totalitarian Capitalism, as one author here during the holidays wrote: people without money can just "starve to death." Our system of private property in land FORCES landless men to work for others; to work in factories, stores, and offices, whether they like it or not. Wherever access to land is free, men work only to provide what they actually need or desire. Wherever the white man has come in contact with savage cultures this fact becomes apparent. There is for savages in their native state no such sharp distinction between "work" and "not working" as clocks and factory whistles have accustomed the white man to accept. They cannot be made to work regularly at repetitive tasks in which they have no direct interest except by some sort of duress. Disestablishment from land, like slavery, is a form of DURESS. The white man, where slavery cannot be practiced, has found that he must first disestablish the savages from their land before he can force them to work steadily for him. Once they are disestablished, they are in effect STARVED into working for him and into working as he directs. ~Dr. Ralph Borsodi This Ugly Civilization (1929, Simon and Schuster) “You’ll know you’re among the people of your culture if the food is all owned, if it’s all under lock and key. But food was once no more owned than the air or the sunshine are owned. No other culture in history has ever put food under lock and key—and putting it there is the cornerstone of your economy, because IF THE FOOD WASN'T UNDER LOCK AND KEY, WHO WOULD WORK?" ~Daniel Quinn My Ishmael (1998, Bantam) * "[The Native Americans] didn't have any rights to the land ... Any white person who brought the element of civilization had the right to take over this continent." ~Ayn Rand, US Military Academy at West Point, March 6, 1974 The RIGHT. To TAKE. Finally, an honest (if only for a moment) Totalitarian Capitalist.
  • WhiteIndian's picture
    WhiteIndian 3 years 3 weeks ago Page Mark Davis
    It's not a waste of time when the empirical data from the history of humanity debunks your premises upon which you base your deductive syllogisms. The point is: you're wrong because your premises are wrong. It matters not what's possible, you're wrong about many assumptions right now, which Stephen Jay Gould refers rather nicely "just so stories" in the excerpt below. P.S. Gambol comes from the following excerpt: Why agriculture? In retrospect, it seems odd that it has taken archaeologists and paleontologists so long to begin answering this essential question of human history. What we are today—civilized, city-bound, overpopulated, literate, organized, wealthy, poor, diseased, conquered, and conquerors—is all rooted in the domestication of plants and animals. The advent of farming re-formed humanity. In fact, the question "Why agriculture?" is so vital, lies so close to the core of our being that it probably cannot be asked or answered with complete honesty. Better to settle for calming explanations of the sort Stephen Jay Gould calls "just-so stories." In this case, the core of such stories is the assumption that agriculture was better for us. Its surplus of food allowed the leisure and specialization that made civilization. Its bounty settled, refined, and educated us, freed us from the nasty, mean, brutish, and short existence that was the state of nature, freed us from hunting and gathering. Yet when we think about agriculture, and some people have thought intently about it, the pat story glosses over a fundamental point. This just-so story had to have sprung from the imagination of someone who never hoed a row of corn or rose with the sun for a lifetime of milking cows. GAMBOLING about plain and forest, hunting and living off the land is fun. Farming is not. That's all one needs to know to begin a rethinking of the issue. The fundamental question was properly phrased by Colin Tudge of the London School of Economics: “The real problem, then, is not to explain why some people were slow to adopt agriculture but why anybody took it up at all.” ~Richard Manning, Against the Grain, p.24
  • Mark Davis's picture
    Mark Davis 3 years 3 weeks ago Page Mark Davis
    Jim, I know lots of people who see the words state and government as meaing the same thing. I still think it was a clever way for Jerry to appeal to these people who just can't get by the myth that there are certain social services (i.e. public goods) that must be performed or provided by "government". He clearly states that non-coercive governments don't own its clients while coercive governments own their citizens. So I don't see that use of terms as an error.
  • Mark Davis's picture
    Mark Davis 3 years 3 weeks ago Page Mark Davis
    Hey Suverans2, I was hoping you would weigh in on this issue of semantics and you didn't disappoint. I also agree on "What's the frickin' point?" of pining for the Garden of Eden; must be frustrating.
  • Mark Davis's picture
    Mark Davis 3 years 3 weeks ago
    Where's the State?
    Page Jim Davies
    Jim, I like your idea for starting a database of bios for state agents.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 3 years 3 weeks ago Page Mark Davis
    "Proper government", Mark, appears to me another oxymoron. To govern is to over-rule or destroy the natural and absolute human right of self ownership; that can never be proper (fitting, right, appropriate, suitable.) If Mr Wright thinks there can ever be such a thing, why not suggest to him the error into which he has fallen - along, of course, with a huge number of others. I've not come across anyone who thought that "self-government" means "self-state", that would be a phrase that makes no sense to me. It just means that you and I each make our own decisions for our own lives, period. Perhaps though it would be a good idea to phase out the use of the phrase, in favor of plain-vanilla self-ownership.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 3 years 3 weeks ago Page Mark Davis
    G'day Mark Davis, Very good. That was the first thing that came to my mind; "What about 'self-government'?" There seems to be an aversion, by many freedom-seeking individuals, to the word "government", just as there is an aversion, by many 'citizens', to the word "anarchy". The former associates "government" with "coercion", and the latter associates "anarchy" with "chaos". "All men* have certain natural, essential, and inherent rights - among which are, the enjoying and defending life and liberty; acquiring, possessing, and protecting, property..." (Excerpted from the Natural Rights clause of the New Hampshire Constitution) [*Well almost "all men", some men claim to have a "just claim" to nothing. ;)] "These are the three basic requirements of life, and the preservation of any one of them is completely dependent upon the preservation of the other two." (The Law by Frederic Bastiat) If we use the word "government" to define a collective organization that does nothing more than defend and protect our natural rights, would that "government" still be a bad thing? There are those who will now say something along the lines of, "If it only defends and protects our natural rights it isn't a government". But, just because it isn't, or even has never been, does that mean that it can't be? They then answer, "If it did only that, then it couldn't be called a 'government'." Fine!! What, pray tell, could it be called? Then substitute that word wherever you find the word "government" when we are discussing a collective organization that does nothing more than defend and protect our natural rights. It's that easy. And, why waste time discussing anarcho-primitivism, or whatever the hell one wishes to call it, where we did nothing but "run, jump, and play like a young child or animal[1]" in the Garden of Eden, when its staunchest proponent, here, openly admits that it is impossible for even one individual, let alone all of mankind, to voluntarily return to his primitive state? What's the frickin' point? As for me and my house we will discuss things that are possible. _________________________________________________________________________________ [1] Quick definition from Macmillan Dictionary for the word gambol.
  • WhiteIndian's picture
    WhiteIndian 3 years 3 weeks ago
    Where's the State?
    Page Jim Davies
    The State wields the sword that enforces the business of the Farmer's plowshares, and all the subsequent division of labor and production and concentration of wealth of agricultural city-Statism (civilization.) There is no use beating plowshares (a Mass-Death Culture technique to dominate Nature's Flora) into swords (a mass-Death Culture technique to dominate Nature's Fauna) until we decide that one specie of the family dominating the rest of Mother Evolution's Tree of Life family* is, eventually, suicidal. ____________ * The Great Tree of Life http://evogeneao.com/tree.html
  • WhiteIndian's picture
    WhiteIndian 3 years 3 weeks ago Page Mark Davis
    A tautology of Zombie politics: "Noncoercive government consists of institutions, organizations, or agencies that provide protection and assurance of freedom without use of coercion..." I bet if you use just the right word magic on sacred pieces of contract-or grade paper, you could also conjure an animated corpse. Right after we have endless ergs of power too cheap to meter. Most of the Cargo Cults finally had the good sense to give up, but there are still a few surviving. All hail John Frum, Happy Government, Voodoo Science, and Free Statism. Yep, good luck with that. Let me know when it all works out. _________________ "The cults focus on obtaining the material wealth of the advanced culture through contract rituals and practices. Cult members believe that the wealth was intended for them by the Invisible Hand and the Founding Fathers." ;-) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cargo_cult
  • Mark Davis's picture
    Mark Davis 3 years 3 weeks ago Page Mark Davis
    States assume that they own the people in their territory and use legalized force and fraud to control those people. Corporations without states to do their bidding would be like any other entity vying for my business and be subject to free-market forces as well as ownership liability. You seem to completely discount that people can make choices for themselves and do not have to act like little puppets, though many do choose that path of least resistance. I don't know anybody who commutes two hours to work and forsakes social "play". I enjoy my work as it is engaging, challenging and I can do what I want when I want. No hierarchy in sight either. Other than the taxes I am forced to pay, of course. Maybe you just need a new line of work since your view appears awfully skewed. Still, I must say that I like the way you have brought a fresh perspective and interesting insights to the conversations around here although I felt blindsided by a 2x4. You might want to ratchet it down a little bit though.
  • Mark Davis's picture
    Mark Davis 3 years 3 weeks ago Page Mark Davis
    Jim, Jerry states that "Proper government has the purpose of protecting people from coercion and fraud in their myriad forms, from their many sources... Noncoercive government consists of institutions, organizations, or agencies that provide protection and assurance of freedom without use of coercion or fraud...Individuals contracting for the services could be called clients, customers, citizens or other. However, they cannot have a governmental citizenship forced upon them: They do not belong to a government." He goes on to explain the differences between coercive and non-coercive governments such as coercive governments (States) are ownerless corporate entities that exist outside the set of laws it creates while non-coercive governments have responsible owners that are constrained by the same principles of the society they operate in. See Chapter 11 for a complete discussion. I see it as an extension of the concept of self-government where the word government doesn't mean that you are a self-state. It helps to overcome the common mistake of considering the word state synonymous with the word government and it also deflects the common fear of anarchy being lawless chaos.
  • WhiteIndian's picture
    WhiteIndian 3 years 3 weeks ago Page Mark Davis
    Comforts brought by technology; we ALL like them. But such comforts are a monkey trap* of our own making. Now we're locked into commuting 2 hours per day to a Job working for The Man, when in the Original Affluent Society (Sahlins, 1974) 2 hours of play in the woods was sufficient to provide for human needs. Better enjoy that iPod's social media! -- that ever so poorly replaces the many hours Non-State bands and tribes spent together socially interacting (while making somebody way up the sociopolitical hierarchy rich.) Also, libertarian types are too quick to separate out the sociopolitical hierarchy into "evil coercive government" and "gloriously free corporations." They're pretty much all the same to a dispassionate observer. The reason being: libertarians love sociopolitical hierarchy and Lording-over-others — just not sociopolitical hierarchy that Lords-over-them. It's a big contradiction in their thinking. The "oh-so-evhul" Government is just the CUT-OUT MAN to blame for the very real power wielded by the corporate rulers, or as George Carlin calls them, "The People Who REALLY Own This Country."** We all know today that capitalist/corporate Wall Street purchases the Washington D.C. it wants. And that has been so from the beginning of agricultural city-Statism (civilization.) Those with the plowshares need to hire people with swords to get more land to farm. "Agriculture creates government." ~Richard Manning, Against the Grain, p.73 _______________________ * Monkey Trap http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/monkey_trap ** George Carlin -"Who Really Controls America" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hYIC0eZYEtI
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 3 years 3 weeks ago Page Mark Davis
    Mark, I share your liking for the comforts brought by technology, but it seems to me you haven't answered WhiteIndian's valid question, "What is 'non-coercive government' other than a contradiction?" If a social system is non-coercive, it's not proper to call it governed. If it has a government, then by definition it coerces. This is binary, because words have meaning. If Mr Wright is referring to social cooperation such as is used by corporations etc, he ought not to use the word "government." It is possible he used this contradictory phrase to arouse curiosity, to get the book browser to give attention. If so I'd say that's less than honest. It's also possible he likes the ideas we espouse here, about a society of self-governing individuals, but cannot see how one might be achieved and so wants to modify that objective. In that case please refer your friend to my 2006 STR article "How We Can Get There."
  • WhiteIndian's picture
    WhiteIndian 3 years 3 weeks ago Page Mark Davis
    You've listed technologies used by Non-State societies for millions of years before domestication-agriculture-civilization-warfare-sacrifice. Evidence for fire is 9,000,000 years ago. There is archeological evidence of humans sailing blue water 800,000 years ago. I'm not against technology, per se, and neither are most primitivists.* But technology after the emergence of domestication tends to be harnessed into increasing the control of the control-freaks, or "emergent elite" or "Big Men" as anthropologists call them in the field's literature. Do the accounting yourself. Play two hours per day in the woods -- or drudge-away 14 hour per day for The Man and washing your shirts and cleaning and ironing and on and on and on. There's nothing "romantic" about the Original Affluent Society. (Sahlins, 1974) It's a scholarly analysis of empirical data gathered by anthropologists/ethnologists studying paleolithic people, like the Bushmen, in the field. They spend most of their day in leisure, telling stories, gamboling, sleeping. All of these recently discovered facts debunk the premises upon which people apologize for agricultural city-Statism (civilization.) It doesn't matter or not if I can or even want to live the life-style; the civilizationist's premises are proven invalid, just as a Biblical Literalists premises are proven invalid by empirical data that constitutes the theory of evolution. As far as living or wanting to live a Non-State society lifeway -- it's impossible, at least for now (although a fast collapse, like a nuclear war, would certainly create another "stone age.") The agricultural city-State (civilization) has been extremely thorough in its invasion and occupation of nearly every square meter of earth's surface. Living out in the woods, alone, signing "A Country Boy Can Survive" isn't living with a knowledgeable tribe or band on a Landbase that has abundant resources unruined by totalitarian agriculture. But neither can one ignore the Critique of Civilization. It's promises are illusory, it makes us sick and reduces quality of life. Just knowing that much has helped people today become healthier by eating a "Paleo diet." __________________________ * Isn’t it hypocritical of primitivists to use modern technology? If they want to live primitively so badly, why don’t they just run off into the woods already and do it? 26 October 2005 5 Common Objections to Primitivism, and Why They’re Wrong by Jason Godesky http://www.rewild.info/anthropik/2005/10/5-common-objections-to-primitiv...
  • Mark Davis's picture
    Mark Davis 3 years 3 weeks ago Page Mark Davis
    I'm curious how you feel about making a fire for warmth and cooking? Are matches used for "concentrating wealth and sociopolitical control to the hierarchical elite" or should we still be using flints? What about using fishing polls or nets? Or axes for chopping wood? These are all technological advances that make life easier for individuals. "Playing in the woods for two hours per day to feed oneself" sounds a bit oversimplified and romantic to me. Have you ever even been camping much less hunting or fishing? For longer than a weekend? I know of some country boys that are squatters/roamers down in the Everglades that live just like you say you wish to do: free from the perils of civilization (except they're smart enough to have guns, boats, clothes and fishing polls which you could forsake if you wish); so since it is possible then why don't you live as you preach?
  • WhiteIndian's picture
    WhiteIndian 3 years 3 weeks ago Page Mark Davis
    Playing in the woods about 2 hours per day to feed oneself, as Non-State societies did in the Original Affluent Society (Sahlins, 1974), is a far cry from grinding-away 8+ hours for The Man and then having to do all the rest of your living on your "free time." How is exactly is technology "easing burdens?" It's not. Technology isn't about easing burdens as much as it is concentrating wealth and sociopolitical control to the hierarchical elite. Technology mainly means building bigger and better Pyramids for the Pharaohs. And even more efficient management/taming of the labor force. Alf Hornborg documents this observation well in his "The power of the machine: Global inequalities of economy, technology, and environment." http://www.lunduniversity.lu.se/o.o.i.s?id=12683&postid=538663 Being that government is a monopoly on violence over a geographic area, "non-coercive government" seems as ever hopeful as conjuring animated corpses. I suppose Zombies are possible with just the right application of technology too. James Axtell has a whole chapter in the following book describing White Indians, as follows: The Invasion Within: The Contest of Cultures in Colonial North America by James Axtell Oxford University Press http://www.oup.com/us/catalog/general/subject/HistoryAmerican/ColonialRe... The White Indians of Colonial America by James Axtell The William and Mary Quarterly, Third Series, Vol. 32, No. 1 (Jan., 1975), pp. 55-88 Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture http://www.shsu.edu/~jll004/colonial_summer09/whiteindians.pdf
  • Mark Davis's picture
    Mark Davis 3 years 3 weeks ago Page Mark Davis
    Humans certainly are capable of using technical knowledge and tools such as nut and bolt machines to ease our burdens, indeed to prosper. I didn't say humans were machines. Noncoercive government is basically a free society organized around the principle of equal freedom. I suggest that you read the book to gain a better undrstanding of the concept. And what is a "WhiteIndian" other than a contradiction? I am curious how you rationalize using the Internet on a computer powered by electricity from a mechanical generator while promoting a roaming hunter-gatherer society? Do you appreciate the contributions of the scientists and engineers that created these modern tools? Do you believe that humans would have these wonderful tools today if social organization never evolved beyond humans roaming around looking for low hanging fruit and small animals to kill?
  • WhiteIndian's picture
    WhiteIndian 3 years 3 weeks ago Page Mark Davis
    Techno-salvationist social engineering = libertarianism. "...technical manual...rocket scientist...nuts and bolts of human interactions..." Human just aren't technical nut and bolt machines. And what is a "noncoercive government" other than a contradiction?
  • painkilleraz's picture
    painkilleraz 3 years 3 weeks ago Web link Michael Dunn
    Typical, the only ones with guns are the ones we SHOULD fear!
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 3 years 3 weeks ago
    Guest Editor
    Story strike
    G'day Mark Davis, Yes, and I apologize for not heeding my own advice. :( I too found some of it interesting, in fact some of it even parallels my own thoughts on the subject. But, as I wrote some time back, (and now edited a bit): "So, when will [we] be allowed to "gambol about plain and forest", you may rightfully ask? Why, that's simple, when the e-vile ACS "civilization" has completely collapsed, and at least three-quarters of the earth's human population is dead, and all knowledge of growing our own food and domesticating animals has been completely lost." Because, if this basic knowledge is not "completely lost" we will eventually end up...right back where we are today, because, as you put it, the "basic human desire [is] to improve one's lot in life". The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun.
  • Mark Davis's picture
    Mark Davis 3 years 3 weeks ago
    Guest Editor
    Story strike
    Don't worry Suverans2, STR will survive and move on after it becomes evident to WI that nobody pays attention to what he says anymore. I found his Neanderthal model for social organization interesting at first and still appreciate some of his insights and links to essays on how civilization has evolved. Unfortunately his goal appears to be to create chaos on this board while avoiding any direct challenges to his shallow thinking. It is very broad, but not as deep as he seems to believe. The premise that civilization and the state are synonymous doesn't get you very far. The ideal of humans living forever as free roaming hunter-gatherers is refuted by his precious empirical evidence as well as the basic human desire to improve one's lot in life; but that pales in comparison to the hurdle of de-evolution required to take us back to the (pre-?) stone-age. This scenario would, of course, require the death of billions of people, so he keeps dancing around our pointing out this psychotic desire.
  • WhiteIndian's picture
    WhiteIndian 3 years 3 weeks ago Web link Michael Dunn
    He writes: "...for...natural aristocracy ... contemptuous of egalitarianism..." That is as contradictory, and revealing, as saying, "I'm for natural polyester, and contemptuous of wool." First, egalitarianism IS natural. Humans have evolved to be egalitarian, as evidenced by low sexual dimorphism (on the level of penguins) and zero sexual dichromaticism (as compared to the red ass baboon.) For starters, see Christopher Boehm's "Hierarchy in the Forest: The Evolution of Egalitarian Behavior," (2001) published by Harvard University Press. Second, only in an egalitarian Non-State sociopolitical typography have anthropologists observed humans to be "autonomous and sovereign" individuals "who bow to no external political leaders." (Service, 1975) Egalitarianism means equal sociopolitical power. That is, no one Lords-it-over anybody else. Jefferson was quite egalitarian with his famous "all men are created equal" phrase. Egalitarianism = the greatest personal freedom. Unfortunately, I've learned that Libertarian types are like young-earth creationist types when it comes to empirical data that debunks their dearly held delusions. And Libertarians hold their delusions so they can hold hierarchical power and Lord-it-over other people. Funny thing is, they love Lording -it-over others, but don't much like it above them. And write vast volumes how that contradiction should be able to work, even though it never does. Seems they'd check their premises against a bit of scientific literature, but they never do. _________________ Elman R. Service (1975), Origins of the State and Civilization: The Process of Cultural Evolution. New York: Norton. NON-STATE AND STATE SOCIETIES http://faculty.smu.edu/rkemper/cf_3333/Non_State_and_State_Societies.pdf
  • WhiteIndian's picture
    WhiteIndian 3 years 3 weeks ago
    It's Magic!
    Page Paul Hein
    Left/Right "false dichotomy" applies to Communism/Capitalism. Both agricultural city-Statist (civilization) political schemes annihilate Non-State society where people live as "autonomous and sovereign" individuals "who bow to no external political leaders." Both enforce a brutal hunt-gather-forage lockdown and ruthlessly restrict gamboling about plain and forest. Marx/Mises Axis of Gambol Lockdown = yet another example of the Left/Right "false dichotomy."
  • WhiteIndian's picture
    WhiteIndian 3 years 3 weeks ago
    It's Magic!
    Page Paul Hein
    Don't forget the "invisible hand" magicians. A city-Statist hoard collectively and brutally invades a Land, perpetuates a 300 year long Trail of Tears and genocide, collectively forms government divide the land into states and estates, and collectively build vast arrays of roads and canals, huge drainage projects and irrigation projects. And then the moochers divvy up the loot, and dare call it --*POOF*-- "Private property!" Voila! Excuse it all with --*POOF*-- "homestead principle" and "mixed labor!" Abracadabra! Mises' system of capitalist agricultural city-Statism (civilization) is built on as huge a pile of skulls and blood and permanent violence to continually enForce the whole scheme as Marx's system of communist agricultural city-Statism (civilization.)
  • WhiteIndian's picture
    WhiteIndian 3 years 3 weeks ago Web link Jerry J Brown
    Agricultural city-Statism (civilization) draws artificial Borders to Regulate the free movement of Non-State societies from gamboling about plain and forest, and also slaughters those Non-State people when they try to live their lives as "autonomous and sovereign" individuals who "bow to no external political leaders." (Service, 1975) But libertarians denigrate Non-State society, and laud such Land enTITLEments from city-Statist big-government as the foundation of their freedom — then sit around bellyaching why they don't feel free. P.S. When you've got enough government to enForce agricultural city-statist Fences, don't be surprised if you don't feel a bit fenced in. "The first man who, having fenced in a piece of land, said 'This is mine,' and found people naive enough to believe him, that man was the true founder of civil society. The first man who, having enclosed a piece of ground, bethought himself of saying This is mine, and found people simple enough to believe him, was the real founder of civil society. From how many crimes, wars, and murders, from how many horrors and misfortunes might not any one have saved mankind, by pulling up the stakes, or filling up the ditch, and crying to his fellows: Beware of listening to this imposter; you are undone if you once forget that the fruits of the earth belong to us all, and the earth itself to nobody." ~Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Discourse on the Origin and Basis of Inequality Among Men and A Dissertation On the Origin and Foundation of the Inequality of Mankind
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 3 years 3 weeks ago Web link Jerry J Brown
    Very good article. One criticism. Ron Kaufman wrote "Television is advertising. It is a medium whose purpose is to sell, to promote capitalism." I believe it would be more accurate to say, "It is a medium whose purpose is to sell, to promote consumerism".
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 3 years 3 weeks ago Web link Jerry J Brown
    Exactly! To "legalize", according to Black's 6th, means "to add the sanction and authority of law to that which before was without or against law". Liberty needs no "sanction and authority" added to it.
  • Jerry J Brown's picture
    Jerry J Brown 3 years 3 weeks ago Web link Jerry J Brown
    It's a step in the right direction. There's ideals, then there's reality. Few of the liberties we lost will come back easily or quickly. And only with a lot of work.