Recent comments

  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 22 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    Chris Dates, I think so. Just ask any reasonable man, woman or child on the planet if they want to have their life, liberty or justly acquired property taken from them without their consent. If they wouldn't, then murder (the taking of an innocent individual's life), slavery and false-imprisonment, and theft and stealing are against the natural law. Keep in mind here that an individual has given consent via his/her actions if (s)he, either intentionally, or through gross neglect, has violated these same natural rights of others. This is called forfeiture. FOR'FEITURE, n. 1. The act of forfeiting; the losing of some right, privilege, estate, honor, office or effects, by an offense, crime, breach of condition or other act. ~ Webster's 1828 American Dictionary of the English Language
  • Chris Dates's picture
    Chris Dates 4 years 22 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    "So we can sit around here and fight over words and phrases and definitions and ideas all we want. But it would probably be advisable to learn to enjoy what we have today and set good examples as we travel along." I'd say that's sound advice, Sam.
  • Chris Dates's picture
    Chris Dates 4 years 22 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    "Bonneau has a family to take care of and the opportunity costs of such ultra-orthodox political purity are likely too great." Well, that was uncalled for. I hardly think Paul is going to turn into a thug after writing this essay; he is not making some pragmatic argument for thuggery, because non-aggression is "just too hard". Maybe you should reread it, Kenk. He is simply explaining what is. Here's a thought: I am walking up to you, how could you possibly know that I understand such concepts as property or ownership? These are only ideas, and good ones, perhaps, but they are far from universal. Suverans2, KenK did not jump in to defend Paul, he jumped in to be rude. Other than some quotes from admittedly very smart human beings, can you show me where "natural law" is universal?
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 22 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    It sounds like that old fart, Lysander Spooner, agrees with your assessment, Darkcrusade. "...if...there be in nature no such principle as justice, no such principle as honesty, no such principle as men's natural rights of person or property, then all such words as justice and injustice, honesty and dishonesty, all such words as mine and thine, all words that signify that one thing is one man's property and that another thing is another man's property, all words that are used to describe men's natural rights of person or property, all such words as are used to describe injuries and crimes, should be struck out of all human languages as having no meanings; and it should be declared, at once and forever, that the greatest force and the greatest frauds, for the time being, are the supreme and only laws for governing the relations of men with each other; and that, from henceforth, all persons and combinations of persons --- those that call themselves governments, as well as all others --- are to be left free to practice upon each other all the force, and all the fraud, of which they are capable." ~ Excerpted from The Natural Law or The Science of Justice - A Treatise on Natural Law, Natural Justice, Natural Rights, Natural Liberty, and Natural Society; Showing That All Legislation Whatsoever Is An Absurdity, a Usurpation, and a Crime, by Lysander Spooner
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 4 years 22 weeks ago
    Abolishing Prisons
    Page Jim Davies
    Thank you, Rita! Meanwhile I think I may have understated how unusual it is for KenK to have suffered five robberies in about 20 years; I suggested it was 1:167. If anyone is handy with probability math, please take a look at http://www.theanarchistalternative.info/zgb/probrob.htm and let us know. He could turn out to be a very rare person indeed.
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 4 years 22 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    "All are dust and to dust we shall return" I heard that somewhere. It appears to be true. J. E. Bush, uncle and great uncle to the former grand wizards of the klan, once said, "...the only thing you can buy, sell or trade on is energy -- man's physical and his mental energy..." Everything that you think has value came out of the earth and will, in time, return to the earth. Put differently, the only things you can buy or sell are transportation and transformation. Call it what you want: property is as good a word as any. You won't have it all that long. And neither will your children -- or their children. So we can sit around here and fight over words and phrases and definitions and ideas all we want. But it would probably be advisable to learn to enjoy what we have today and set good examples as we travel along. You've done just that, Paul. Thanks for the essay and the insights. Sam.
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 4 years 22 weeks ago Page Jakub Bozydar W...
    The bottom line is relatively simple, Jakub, and I believe you've successfully scratched it: Eventually something has to be produced by someone for which others are willing to exchange real items of value. Magicians of state (the ultimate swindlers of all mankind throughout all history) will continue to titillate crowds by pulling rabbits out of hats -- the ultimate allegory to the racket of fiat "money". But they have to quickly leave the stage before their scam is unraveled by ordinary folks; only to return with other and often more outrageous marvels. Most in almost all crowds are dazzled by truly adroit and personable magicians -- particularly when they're convinced s/he can produce something of real value from an empty hat. Thus elections, with smiling, waving gangsters called politicians. Ordinary hats do not contain rabbits. Even the best of magicians can only pull so many rabbits out of a single hat. Yet the unwashed masses will always crave free rabbit stew. The magical politicians' stock in trade is in their proclivity to keep most of the folks looking in the wrong direction for the real source of the live rabbit. It's not that the rabbit is not genuine -- it's an actual rabbit all right. But it did not (and can not) come from the empty hat. Sam
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 22 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    ″Power rests on nothing other than people's consent to submit, and each person who refuses to submit to tyranny reduces it by one two-hundred-and-fifty-millionth, whereas each who compromises only increases it.″ ~ Vladimir Konstantinovich Bukovsky As my friend, tzo, so eloquently put it... All governments must have citizens in order to exist. ...so, we (my natural law wife and I) thought we would do our "[two] two-hundred-and-fifty-millionth" worth. We ask no one to join us, and, "[w]e ask not your counsels or your arms". And, for the record, the only persons I "throw" it at, as you put it, are the one's who falsely accuse me of being a member and/or taking member-only benefits/privileges. I do, however, suggest, quite frequently, that membership in the political community is at the "root" of most of the problems men and women have with the government, but it's not very popular, and is therefor almost always ignored, for obvious reasons. p.s. I appreciate, very much, that you jumped to Paul's defense. I like many of the things Paul writes.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 22 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    Perhaps you missed my "How about you?" question, Paul. I may be the only man on STR [who is a non-member of the political community], who hasn't used a Taxpayer Identification Number of any kind, had any government licenses or identification cards of any ilk, or taken any member-only benefits or privileges in about a dozen years. How about you? And, I suspect this... "Suverans, you sound a bit like those old farts who justify their receiving Socialist Security because they are "just recovering what I was forced to contribute when I was young". ~ Paul Bonneau ...may be a case of "the pot calling the kettle black". My guess is that you are not a stranger to their covenant[1], that you are a "numbered" member of the political community, and that you voluntarily use that chattel number, which is why you are able to have the "benefit" of a bank account, and why your government could "confiscate" your money, but I could be wrong. _________________________________________________________________ [1] Strangers. ...In its general legal signification the term is opposed to the word "privy". Those who are in no way parties to the covenant or transaction nor bound by it, are said to be strangers to the covenant or transaction. ~ Black's Law Dictionary, Sixth Edition (c.1991), page 1421 And, if one is a stranger he is, "...one who, in no event resulting from the existing state of affairs, can become liable for the debt and whose property is not charged with the payment thereof and cannot be sold therefor". (Ibid.)
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 4 years 22 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    Bonneau has a family to take care of and the opportunity costs of such ultra-orthodox political purity are likely too great. I often get that argument thrown at me as well. NB:Real life existence doesn't grant much consideration to the hairsplitting details of ideological purity contests.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 22 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    No thanks, gentlemen; I think I'll stick with the "pollyannish version" of natural law, natural rights and natural liberty that these old farts put forth. "That men should take up arms and spend their lives and fortunes, not to maintain their rights, but to maintain they have not rights, is an entirely new species of discovery..." ~ Thomas Paine "...if...there be in nature no such principle as justice, no such principle as honesty, no such principle as men's natural rights of person or property, then all such words as justice and injustice, honesty and dishonesty, all such words as mine and thine, all words that signify that one thing is one man's property and that another thing is another man's property, all words that are used to describe men's natural rights of person or property, all such words as are used to describe injuries and crimes, should be struck out of all human languages as having no meanings; and it should be declared, at once and forever, that the greatest force and the greatest frauds, for the time being, are the supreme and only laws for governing the relations of men with each other; and that, from henceforth, all persons and combinations of persons --- those that call themselves governments, as well as all others --- are to be left free to practice upon each other all the force, and all the fraud, of which they are capable. Section IV What, then, is legislation? It is an assumption by one man, or body of men, of absolute, irresponsible dominion over all other men whom they call subject to their power. It is the assumption by one man, or body of men, of a right to subject all other men to their will and their service. It is the assumption by one man, or body of men, of a right to abolish outright all the natural rights, all the natural liberty of all other men; to make all other men their slaves; to arbitrarily dictate to all other men what they may, and may not, do; what they may, and may not, have; what they may, and may not, be. It is, in short, the assumption of a right to banish the principle of human rights, the principle of justice itself, from off the earth, and set up their own personal will, pleasure, and interest in its place. All this, and nothing less, is involved in the very idea that there can be any such thing as human legislation that is obligatory upon those upon whom it is imposed." ~ Excerpted from The Natural Law or The Science of Justice - A Treatise on Natural Law, Natural Justice, Natural Rights, Natural Liberty, and Natural Society; Showing That All Legislation Whatsoever Is An Absurdity, a Usurpation, and a Crime, by Lysander Spooner _______________________________________________________ "The laws shall be merely declaratory of natural rights and natural wrongs, and … whatever is indifferent to the laws of nature shall be left unnoticed by human legislation … and legal tyranny arises whenever there is a departure from this simple principle." ~ Elisha P. Hurlbut, nineteenth-century American natural-rights theorist _______________________________________________________ Life, faculties, production — in other words, individuality, liberty, property — this is man. And in spite of the cunning of artful political leaders, these three gifts from God precede all human legislation, and are superior to it. Life, liberty, and property do not exist because men have made laws. On the contrary, it was the fact that life, liberty, and property existed beforehand that caused men to make laws in the first place. ~ The Law by Frédéric Bastiat _______________________________________________________ "The law of nature or natural law … is the law, the body of rights, which we deduce from the essential nature of man." ~ Francis Lieber _______________________________________________________ "The natural law is, in essence, a profoundly “radical” ethic, for it holds the existing status quo, which might grossly violate natural law, up to the unsparing and unyielding light of reason. In the realm of politics or State action, the natural law presents man with a set of norms which may well be radically critical of existing positive law imposed by the State. At this point, we need only stress that the very existence of a natural law discoverable by reason is a potentially powerful threat to the status quo and a standing reproach to the reign of blindly traditional custom [common law/judicial decisions] or the arbitrary will of the State apparatus [statute law/positive law]. In fact, the legal principles of any society can be established in three alternate ways: ...by slavish conformity to custom [common law/judicial decisions], by arbitrary whim [statute law], or by use of man’s reason [natural law]". ~ Introduction to Natural Law by Murray M. Rothbard Just to name a few.
  • mhstahl's picture
    mhstahl 4 years 22 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    Indeed, Paul, not only does the word "property" have french(actually Latin-I believe it is a Roman concept, as we understand it)roots, but so does "common law" which I often(and I once did myself)hear many in the liberty community lauding. There is, in fact, a considerable controversy amongst historians of the pre-Conquest era over just how centralized authority was, and how organized it was-in the academic literature those who see the evidence pointing to a largely de-centralized government are known as minimalists and those favoring a more fully developed State prior to 1066 are known as maximalists. At any rate, certainly the concept of property, at least in land, was in evidence in the record far before the Conquest-the term for it was "book-land." Literally land recorded on paper. We cannot though presume that this was a spontaneous development, since the Romans had control of lower Britain for many centuries. Indeed, the long term resistance of Scotland, Wales, and to a significant extent Kent to "civilization" in the quasi-Roman sense is evidence of Roman influence in Wessex and other areas that were under their direct control. As to Common Law, this is 100%, without historical question, a development of Norman Conquerors (Specifically, but not limited to, Duke William and William Rufus.) It is a legal system that relies on central authority as the final adjudicator, and as such presumes the supremacy of the State. Often the structure of common law reflected the old customary law principles, but the relationship was only superficial the common law was a system designed to ensure that the conquerors controlled "justice." There is no question about this, to any historian with an understanding of the era the notion that the Common Law is "natural" is like stating that the sky is green and the Sun is blue. One of my one of these days is to write a STR column-perhaps when I do I'll elaborate. For the moment let me cite an essay by Frederick Pollock: http://oll.libertyfund.org/index.php?Itemid=284&id=1167&option=com_conte... In this document, Pollock is referring to late Saxon society-the "hundred" is a construct of positive law, not the customary law-later kings came up with this to help standardize law, and enact its enforcement(it was a crime to not chase a thief, for instance); when he refers to "the witan", the best corollary is Gandalf in the Lord of the Rings in his dealings with various kings, minus any magic. Tolkien was, after all, a professor of Anglo-Saxon. Not a perfect analogy, but good enough to get the point across. Also, forget not that Pollock was writing at the turn of the last century, when "progress" was still a God. I think a great resource for you would be Max Gluckman's "Peace in the Feud": http://past.oxfordjournals.org/content/8/1/1.extract I'm sorry, I do not have a non-copyright version available free....it should be out there though(or PM me.) Also "the Law of the Somalis" by Michael von Notten (I recently gave my copy to Kent McManigal): http://www.amazon.com/Law-Somalis-Foundation-Economic-Development/dp/156... For anyone who has got themselves convinced that "Natural Rights" somehow exist in the concrete world(i.e. minus a State to enforce them) I suggest "The Idea of Natural Rights: Studies on Natural Rights, Natural Law, and Church Law 1150 1625 " by Brian Tierney: http://www.amazon.com/Idea-Natural-Rights-University-Religion/dp/0802848...
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 22 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    And, still troubled by that word "right", when used as a noun, too, I see. We've covered this ground several times, Paul. Maybe this will help refresh your memory. RIGHT, n. 5. Just claim; legal title; ownership; the legal power of exclusive possession and enjoyment 6. Just claim... 7. Just claim... 8. That which justly belongs to one. 9. Property; interest. 10. Just claim... 11. Authority... ~ Webster's 1828 American Dictionary of the English Language
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 22 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    My goodness Paul, you ARE confused. Are you plagued by old-timer's disease? ;-) I may be the only man on STR[1] who hasn't used a Taxpayer Identification Number of any kind, had any government licenses or identification cards of any ilk, or taken any member-only benefits or privileges in about a dozen years. How about you? p.s. You didn't have very good control of "your" money in the bank before, if your government confiscated it, so what makes you believe that you have any better control over "your" money now? lol ________________________________________________________ [1] If there are any others here, they've never made themselves known to me, and I don't expect them to.
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 4 years 22 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    "...possessions are generally respected, it is because an attempt to take them might cause violence..." Yes, this is the true basis for all property ownership, not some silly abstract "right" that takes a government to "protect". It's good to see someone gets my points here. Makes me feel my writing is not completely obtuse, heh. "...the loss is born by the individual, and any attempt to recover possessions are made by that person. " Yes, although there is nothing wrong with trying to get it back with the aid of others who see it in their interest to help. I imagine this might have been true in Anglo Saxon England as well. Actually the word "property" has French roots. The Norman ruling class brought it over with them, I'm guessing. That should be a clue regarding its attachment to the state...
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 4 years 22 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    I don't think I do confuse them. I have some money in the bank. It is not in my possession, but it is still my stuff (because I control it). Until it is confiscated, as the federal government did with a 1mdc account I once had. Then it is no longer my stuff. Suverans, you sound a bit like those old farts who justify their receiving Socialist Security because they are "just recovering what I was forced to contribute when I was young". Of course that is silly. The money that was "contributed" was pissed away, just like all the other tax dollars that were sent to government. The same way the mugger in the article spent it on a prostitute. And no, I'm not getting confused about the fungibility of money either.
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 4 years 22 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    This comment is a strange one. I am describing what is, and you respond with what ought to be. Molyneux has discussed "is" and "ought" many times; might be worth a look. "Legitimacy" is just a meme that the parasitic class takes great care to implant in the minds of the host organisms, so that the parasite can continue his looting. I did not make anything legitimate or illegitimate simply by recognizing that people often do get away with theft and murder. I wonder how you and Suverans explain most of human history, denying that might makes right? Oh, I get it. You are confused about the word "right", as in "right equals good". Certainly the word "right" in isolation has that connotation. However I am not using it that way. I am using "might makes right" as a complete phrase. Look up that phrase in Wikipedia. One of their meanings is this: "The term can be used in the descriptive, rather than prescriptive way, in the same sense that people say that "History is written by the victors." Since every person labels what he/she thinks is good for himself/herself as "right," only those who are able to defeat their enemies are the ones who can push their idea of what is right into fruition." I already addressed the murdering of children, right there in the article. What IS, is that you and I would not do it, because (if nothing else) we prefer to live in human society. What IS is that Obama can and does murder children, because he lives in a society, different from ours, that approves of it. Perhaps you need to read the article again, a bit more carefully. As to your claim that my article suggests you can come to my house and take what you want, try it. You may find you were mistaken.
  • Darkcrusade's picture
    Darkcrusade 4 years 22 weeks ago Page Lawrence M. Ludlow
    This true story is distributed to schoolchildren in New Zealand as part of their Maori heritage... Tarore In 1835, The Bible Society published 100 copies of the Gospel of Luke in the Maori language. In 1836, missionaries gave one to a young Maori girl, Tarore, at a mission school near Matamata. She read it to her father, the chief of the Waikato tribe. She kept her treasured copy of the Gospel of Luke under her pillow when she slept. Under threat of a neighboring warring Rotorua tribe, the mission school was in the process of relocating to Tauranga. On October 19, 1836, at the Wairere Falls, a raiding party killed the 12-year-old girl and took the treasured object from under her pillow. Later, unable to read, the Rotorua chief discarded it until a slave boy came along who had learned to read, and he revealed its contents to his fascinated listeners. The Rotorua chief himself was convicted by its con-tents and resolved to become a Christian. He also re-solved to seek out the father of the murdered girl and beg for his forgiveness. This mission was, of course, life threatening. When finally confronting the father, the chief of the Waikato tribe—and risking the customary tribal response of revenge—the father of the murdered girl forgave him, and thus began a peaceful relationship between the two previously warring tribes! A young girl murdered… A devastated father refusing to seek revenge… A murderer transformed through the Gospel he stole from his victim… Then forgiveness given and peace achieved! The Good News Spreads The story of this young Maori girl and her copy of the Gospel of Luke then became the key to the conversion of many of the Maori tribes. When missionaries visited both the North and South Islands, they discovered that many of the Maori tribes had already been converted to Christ due to the story of Tarore and her copy of the Gospel of Luke making its rounds… The Treaty of Waitangi On February 6, 1840, the nation of New Zealand was born by the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi between the Crown of England and the Maori tribes. While primarily dealing with land rights and other issues, this foundational document continues to obligate the Crown of the United Kingdom to safeguard and protect the Maori’s rights of worship. Since a significant portion of the Maori tribes had previously been converted to Christianity, the government now continues to be legally committed to protect Christianity in New Zealand. There are Bibles in schools, home schooling is encouraged, and many Christian schools receive significant government sup-port. (See New Zealand’s national anthem, left.) It seemed appropriate that we recorded our most recent update of our exposition of the Gospel of Luke in New Zealand, where it has had such a unique and special historical impact. The Gospel of Luke The Gospel according to Luke has been called the most beautiful book ever written.1 At its heart is the perfect Life—Christ’s teachings, redemption through Him, and the changed lives of those who cluster around Him. The religion of Israel could only produce a Pharisee; The power of Rome could only produce a Caesar; The philosophy of Greece could only produce an Alexander, an infant at heart; It was to this Greek mind that Luke wrote: he presents Jesus Christ as the perfect Man, the Universal Man, the very person the Greeks were looking for. H.A. Ironside For the Gentile Reader Of the four Gospels, Luke’s seems to be the most popular to the Gentile reader. Luke is a Gentile, and as such he focuses on the reality that the Gospel is for all nations. There are many Old Testament prophecies which foretold that the Gentiles would be beneficiaries of God’s kingdom. Luke helps us see through Matthew’s Jewish veil and presents to us a broader perspective. Luke the Physician Luke is a Greek physician, and as a physician, he is focused on Jesus’ humanity. As the “beloved physician,” he used more medical terms than Hippocrates, the father of medicine. He has given us an obstetrical account by a doctor of the virgin birth, then he carries us through to the agony of the Cross and the miracle of the empty tomb. Luke was chosen by the Holy Spirit to write this gospel—Luke’s Greek is the highest Greek in the New Testament, the best of any New Testament writer. His writings are regarded as some of the finest pieces of historical writing in ancient literature. Sir William Ram-say set out to disprove Luke. After diligent investigation, he concluded that Luke had not made one historical inaccuracy—his gospel is the most complete historically. Special Features Luke gives us many features omitted by Matthew and Mark: An obstetrical account of the virgin birth; 20 miracles, six of which are in no other gospel; and 23 parables, 18 of which are found nowhere else. It is Luke alone who mentions the coming of the angel to our Savior to strengthen Him during Gethsemane’s agony. And had it not been for Luke, we would never have known of the penitent thief, or of the visit of our resurrected Lord with the two disciples on the way to their home at Emmaus. Parables that are unique to Luke’s Gospel include the story of the Good Samaritan, the rich fool, the barren fig tree, the great supper (not to be confused with the marriage of the king’s son as given in Matthew), the lost coin, the Prodigal Son, the unjust steward, the story of Lazarus, the unjust judge and the widow, the Pharisee and the publican, and the parable of the pounds (distinct from the ten talents). These are re-corded in Luke’s Gospel alone. And only Luke reports on the sending of the 70. Paul’s Trial Documents? There are some scholars who suspect that Luke’s Gospel—and its sequel, the Book of Acts (“Luke Volume 2”)—may have been required trial documentation. Roman law required that the historical background of a case had to precede an appeal to Caesar. Such an undertaking was expensive and Theophilus may have been Paul’s sponsor. We notice two interesting observations about Luke’s writings that corroborate this: first, uprisings were in-variably the fault of Paul’s Jewish adversaries; and second, centurions are always portrayed as the good guys. http://www.khouse.org/
  • Darkcrusade's picture
    Darkcrusade 4 years 22 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    Might makes Right??? Wow! You just made Government legitimate,and Hitler,Mao and stalin! Good Job-LOL. No one should beef about being robbed at knife-point,gun-point or taxed through threats and coercion. Don't leave 'your house' or 'your wife' alone as i might have need and a majority of force to procur my want. Man does not equal animal. Male lions will kill cubs to mate with the lioneses;law of the jungle(not evil.). Man my be a little unsettled by this fact. Atleast man recognises that murdering a step-child would be an evil.I mean,until you wrote your above posting Paul.
  • mhstahl's picture
    mhstahl 4 years 22 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    Paul, I think you make an important distinction between "possessions" and "property". I've come to think of the term "property" as an abstract legal definition, whereas "possessions", or your stuff, is the real world concrete description. This is a tricky issue, since "ownership" is an implication of "property". For me, the key in understanding this was studying Anglo-Saxon England. This is a society in many ways very similar to viking age Iceland that David Friedman has written about, particularly prior to the year 800. Long historical treatise made short, one of the primary reforms that Alfred and assorted other kings made that unified the disparate kingdoms(then really quasi-anarchic societies that unified only for defensive purposes)was to first codify and standardize rates of restitution for violence and other harm( the system of wer, bot, and wite- with the king suddenly getting a cut), and then to essentially create the crime of theft. Theft was (is) essentially unenforceable under the customary law system(which is non-government, by the way) but most certainly IS enforceable by magistrates of the king. The concept of property, and "rights" to it is directly traceable to the efforts of kings to consolidate power. I've studied reports of many contemporary customary law societies, and while, as in Saxon England, possessions are generally respected, it is because an attempt to take them might cause violence, rather than that they are "owned." People are generally expected to see to their possessions, and if they are taken by guile or though stealth the loss is born by the individual, and any attempt to recover possessions are made by that person. Unfortunately, most libertarians I've come across are quite myopic on this subject and tend to place property on an absurd pedestal where it becomes sane, and even beneficial, to execute simple trespassers despite the lack of any true threat. Since, particularly in the US, most land claims can be traced to either violence of its threat(and are essentially ALL technically property of the government anyway), and that a huge proportion of wealth is based upon some level of government interlocution, it seems a strange position for people devoted to non-aggression.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 22 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    It appears that you STILL confuse "ownership" with "possession". So, obviously it didn't help. ;-) Have a good day, Paul.
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 4 years 22 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    Sorry, I was not being clear. I was actually referring to the decades-long debate among libertarians about what IP is, or whether it exists (of which the SOPA thing is the latest example). I reject such silly anthropomorphic arguments as "information wants to be free". Instead I think property is the stuff in your possession and control.
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 4 years 22 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    Well, might actually does make right, and has done so ever since the Cambrian Explosion. We don't like that might makes right, because it is tedious to stand guard 24 hours a day over one's bicycle (or whatever), so we attempt to live in places where most people don't indulge in practices like theft and murder. But that does not mean that might no longer makes right. The natural law is still out there. The real natural law I mean, not this pollyannish version of it that you find so comforting. Property that is not in your possession or control is not your property any more. It has none of the features of your property. You cannot do what you want with it, or trade it for something else.
  • golefevre's picture
    golefevre 4 years 22 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    I'm going to have to think about your "homegrown theory" some Paul, but I think I genuinely agree with your premise. I repeatedly found myself thinking about George Carlin's famous rant about "stuff" and smiling. Well done, sir.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 22 weeks ago Web link Guest
    "You assist an evil system most effectively by obeying its orders and decrees. An evil system never deserves such allegiance. Allegiance to it means partaking of the evil. A good person will resist an evil system with his or her whole soul." ~ M.K. Gandhi
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 4 years 22 weeks ago
    Norms and the NAP
    Web link Don Stacy
    Obviously the dialectical critical realism in this monograph may be seen under the aspect of Rothbardian-style strategic reversal of the unholy trinity of Aristotelean/Neitzschean/Randian provenance; of the Cartesian-Lockean-Humean-Kantian paradigm, of foundationalism (in practice, Platonic foundationalism) and irrationalism (in practice, capricious exercises of will-to-power or some other ideologically and/or psychosomatically buried source) new and old alike; of the primordial failing of pseudo-Objectivist philosophy, vulgar libertarian ontological monovalence, and its close ally, the epistemic fallacy within its ontic dual; Clearly s/he’s not read and/or internalized the libertarian canon and its complementary social science analog Austro-Agorian econometric (but non-parametric) statistical analysis. But I do give Borer an “A” for effort though.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 22 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    G'day Paul Bonneau, "If someone sticks a gun in your face and takes your wallet, is the money in it still your property?" ~ Paul Bonneau To answer your question; the wallet and the money inside it are still "your stuff", i.e. property, they are simply not, at that moment, in your possession. "It seems to me that if someone has grabbed your stuff, it becomes silly to think of it as your property anymore. It’s no longer your stuff." ~ Paul Bonneau Still confused about "natural rights", i.e. "just claims", I see. According to the above part of your quote, a "just claim" is established at the "point of a gun". That's the Law of the Jungle, Paul. "The Law of the Jungle" is an expression that means..."might makes right"... ~ Wikipedia If that were true then there could be no such thing as theft or stealing. "Property embraces everything which is or may be the subject of ownership..." "The word is also commonly used to denote everything which is the subject of ownership, corporeal or incorporeal, tangible or intangible, visible or invisible, real or personal..." ~ Black's Law Dictionary, Sixth Edition, page 1216 Oh, and, Paul, if "it's no longer your stuff", there's no such thing as "recovery"; you cannot "recover" other individuals "stuff". "Property is the stuff you can prevent others from taking from you." ~ Paul Bonneau It appears that you confuse "ownership" with "possession". Perhaps this will help. "Man can live and satisfy his wants only by ceaseless labor; by the ceaseless application of his faculties to natural resources. This process is the origin of property. But it is also true that a man may live and satisfy his wants by seizing and consuming the products of the labor of others. This process is the origin of plunder." ~ Frédéric Bastiat
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 4 years 22 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    @John deL I think he's referring to the proposed SOPA law.
  • John deLaubenfels's picture
    John deLaubenfels 4 years 22 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    Could you provide a link to "The latest big fuss over “intellectual property” ? I seem to have missed it.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 4 years 22 weeks ago
    Abolishing Prisons
    Page Jim Davies
    KenK, you wrote "In my 42 years I have been held up at gunpoint, had my apartment broken into, as well as my house, my car, and had my then wife's car stolen right out of our driveway..." Wow. Five robberies in, what, 20 years since you came of age? That's one every four years. The crime stats to which I linked you a few days ago say there are 150 robberies a year per per 100K in the population, on average; so 600 over four years. So you are one person in (100K/600 =) 167. Obviously, your story proves that government "protection" doesn't work. In fact, you may have come across _Warren vs D.C._, a case that decided government even denies having a _duty_ to protect you; see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Warren_v._District_of_Columbia I'd supposed government claims to exist to provide protection, but that case showed it doesn't even make such a claim. Perhaps you've wondered what more you could do to protect yourself. That might well involve carrying a suitable weapon. But you'll know how many obstacles government puts in the way of that reasonable precaution. So government doesn't protect, and it inhibits self-help. Who needs it? When it has dissolved, all alternatives are back on the table. In this thread you asked first what I would do, regarding the low-life people who may attack me in some way; I'd explore two options. First, I'd get armed and know how to use the gun, get training. Then second, I'd get insured. Insurance will be a useful option in the coming zero-government society. Policies might offer (for a fee) to respond to emergency calls within a stated number of minutes - and that will then be a _contractual obligation_ of the insurer or defense company. They fail, they must compensate. Other policies would pay for whatever you lost in a robbery, leaving you free of the hassle of having to track down and sue the perp - the insurer would handle all that, and take what restitution they could get via the courts. (Mind you, insurers are risk-averse. If crime sought me out as eagerly as it seems to have found you, I might not get the best rate!) Again, _please read._ If I may say so, it was a mistake to shut out the "pantheon" of libertarian writers; they have good answers for your questions but if you won't read, you won't find. I listed a few, above.
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 4 years 22 weeks ago Web link Jad Davis
    Thanks for that link. This website makes a person think outside the box.
  • Darkcrusade's picture
    Darkcrusade 4 years 22 weeks ago Page Robert L. Johnson
    “It is the glory of God to conceal a thing: but the honor of kings is to search out a matter.” (Proverbs 25:2) The New Testament is in the Old Testament concealed.While the Old Testament is in the New Testament revealed. You are right Suverans2, In Mark 8:12 Christ Jesus was refering to that instant generation. Christ had already performned miracles and healings,and similiar to when the Devil tempted him in the desert,the lawyers and liberals would still not believe.(even if some are brought back from the dead.) Mar 8:11 ¶ And the Pharisees came forth, and began to question with him, seeking of him a sign from heaven, TEMPTING him. Also the devilish tempting recorded in Mat16- Mat 16:1 ¶ The Pharisees also with the Sadducees came, and TEMPTING desired him that he would shew them a sign from heaven. (To this very day a wicked person will try and tempt the Lord.) Christ states ''there shall no sign be given unto it, but the sign of the prophet Jonas.'' The Bible uses types and foreshadowings. Jesus Christ is throughout the Old Testament in a variety of details. For instance, before his death and resurrection, Jesus offered simply the "sign of Jonah" as a foreshadowing of how long he would be dead. "For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the fish's belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth." - Matt 12:40 [Jonas survived for three days and nights in the big fish. http://johnwsewell.blogspot.com/2007/05/in-late-1800s-man-named-james-ba... (One man, Marshall Jenkins, was swallowed alive by a sperm whale in 1771 and survived. Another incident concerns James Bartley. In 1891, Bartley was swallowed by a sperm whale that his whaling crew had harpooned. The whale slipped away, was found and killed a day or so later. Bartley was found alive, but unconscious, in the stomach of the whale. He was revived and in a few weeks regained his health (for documentation see Ambrose James Wilson, Princeton Theological Revue, October, 1928).] God called Jonah to minister to Nineveh, which had served as the capital of the world for several centuries. It was the enemy of Israel, and Jonah was not attracted to the assignment until God explained it to him a bit more clearly.When he finally did go there, he didn’t present a polished, “seeker friendly” sermon! God had declared that they were 40 days from being destroyed. Jonah went through town proclaiming, “Forty days and you get yours!” Jonas was sent unto the pagan city of Nineveh as a prophet,gleefully pronouncing Gods judgement.The King of Nineveh surmised that if their was a God,than he was just,and if they repented he(God) might be merciful. Mercy is not receiving the punishment one deserves. “And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God … I will show wonders in the heaven above, and signs in the earth beneath …”(Acts 2:17,19) Critics discounted the Bible for hundreds of years because their was no evidence of Nineveh................. “It wasn't until 1850 that Nineveh was discovered by archaeologists. It is interesting to read liberal commentaries from before 1850 because they had problems with believing the books of Jonah and Nahum because there was no record of Nineveh.” (Source: bible.org article: ‘Nahum’ by Hampton Keathley IV Th.M.) Many arguments against the Bible are based on information that has not yet been found. One will say, “Well, we haven’t found a record of this city, or of that king, and so it (or he) probably didn’t exist!” Then in time a discovery is made, and the doubtful speculation is proven to be false. This has been the repeated history of archaeology and the Bible throughout the 19th and 20th centuries. The Bible also anticipates the critics. Rom 1:18 ¶ For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness; Rom 1:19 Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed [it] unto them. (We are fearfully and wonderfully made in the image of God, We know right from wrong;unlike the beasts.We can create unlike any beast.) Rom 1:20 For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, [even] his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: Rom 1:21 Because that, when they knew God, they glorified [him] not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Rom 1:22 Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, Rom 1:23 And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things. Rom 1:24 Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves: (when God is rejected as Creator he is apt to give one over to their own early demise! In his mercy!!!) Rom 1:25 Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen. http://www.adullamfilms.com/CanBibleBeTrusted.html http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0d7dhniprH4
  • rita's picture
    rita 4 years 22 weeks ago
    Abolishing Prisons
    Page Jim Davies
    Oh, and good article, Jim.
  • rita's picture
    rita 4 years 22 weeks ago
    Abolishing Prisons
    Page Jim Davies
    @ KenK: Most schizophrenics are neither violent nor dangerous, except to themselves, and very few of them are "substance abusers," whether you use that term in the medical sense of actual addiciton or the legal sense of being caught in possession of a substance that Washington politicians disapprove of. Your comment shows a rather disturbing level of either ignorance or prejudice, or more likely, a dangerous combination of both.
  • rita's picture
    rita 4 years 22 weeks ago Web link Jad Davis
    It practically stops in mid-sentence. I got the feeling that a subscription is required to read the whole article.
  • Darkcrusade's picture
    Darkcrusade 4 years 22 weeks ago Web link Sharon Secor
    These disgusting perverts consider this 'healthy food' ??? http://www.tempo.com.ph/2012/child-abuse-scandal-haunts-school/
  • Darkcrusade's picture
    Darkcrusade 4 years 22 weeks ago Web link Melinda L. Secor
    All roads lead to Rome- http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2049647/BBC-documentary-exposes-... Up to 300,000 Spanish babies were stolen from their parents and sold for adoption over a period of five decades, a new investigation reveals. The children were trafficked by a secret network of doctors, nurses, priests and nuns in a widespread practice that began during General Franco’s dictatorship and continued until the early Nineties
  • DennisLeeWilson's picture
    DennisLeeWilson 4 years 22 weeks ago Web link Jad Davis
    Not much of an article, hardly worth the 55 seconds needed to read it. I spent more time looking for a (non-existent) link to the alleged shadow web project. If I had known it was a "Scientific" American article, I would never have clicked the link. SA articles are invariably inaccurate and out-of-date long before they are published, which is why I stopped my subscription decades ago. Dennis
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 4 years 22 weeks ago
    Abolishing Prisons
    Page Jim Davies
    KenK: "...So I know both personally and financially what the cost of anti-social acts (i.e., "crime") is on people..." I know you're sincere in trying to see through this, Ken. But I believe it's important to identify the REAL perpetrators of "...anti-social acts...". For example, the thread looks at Mr. Davies' article regarding "prisons" and the hopeful abolishment thereof: Who locks up more individuals per 100m population than anyone else on the entire earth??? Who is now arming their police squads with serpentine military weaponry and tanks and drones at prodigious costs to "taxpayers" (what troublesome terms the white man uses to identify his serfs)??? What are your chances of getting "help" from local and/or state and/or federal police as opposed to having your door kicked in, you daughter's cat (and perhaps your daughter as well) shot by predators of state based upon erroneous tips from hired street snitches??? We've never experienced a stateless society. It's impossible for many to even imagine self governance, self ownership -- the ability ("permission"???) to keep all we earn and the freedom to choose which services (police, fire, burglar protection) we would like to purchase -- with at least twice the revenue at our disposal with which to do so (if parasites of states were not pilfering over 50% "at source"). Free market products and services are always much, much more competitive and less costly than those forced upon us by monopoly government. But if one has never experienced the absence of monopolistic central government s/he will have difficulty agreeing with that premise -- it is like a completely foreign concept. Freedom is hard to sell to lifelong serfs. At the rate this society is deteriorating we may be the last generation to even remember what free-market insurance of any kind was, because that industry is rapidly being nationalized if the Obama's have their way. Soon you will be "allowed" to choose between "approved providers" (the collectivist terms go on and on and many of us, like frogs in slowly heated h2o, simply adjust to the new global/socialistic vernacular). The real sociopaths, Ken, are NOT the non-government brand. Yesterday Jeff Tucker had an article here on STR regarding "voluntary compliance" (an oxymoron if there ever was one) in which he quoted Lysander Spooner's 1850 assessment of non-government robbers: “The highwayman takes solely upon himself the responsibility, danger and crime of his own act. He does not pretend that he has any rightful claim to your money, or that he intends to use it for your own benefit. He does not pretend to be anything but a robber. He has not acquired impudence enough to profess to be merely a ‘protector,’ and that he takes men’s money against their will, merely to enable him to ‘protect’ those infatuated travelers who feel perfectly able to protect themselves, or do not appreciate his peculiar system of protection. He is too sensible a man to make such professions as these. Furthermore, having taken your money, he leaves you, as you wish him to do. He does not persist in following you on the road against your will, assuming to be your rightful ‘sovereign’ on account of the ‘protection’ he affords you. He does not keep ‘protecting’ you by commanding you to bow down and serve him; by requiring you to do this, and forbidding you to do that; by robbing you of more money as often as he finds it for his interest or pleasure to do so; and by branding you as a rebel, a traitor and an enemy to your country, and shooting you down without mercy if you dispute his authority or resist his demands. He is too much of a gentleman to be guilty of such impostures and insults and villainies as these. In short, he does not, in addition to robbing you, attempt to make you either his dupe or his slave.” ~Lysander Spooner (1808 – 1887) http://lfb.org/shop/ideas-of-liberty/the-lysander-spooner-reader/?lfb_co... Abstain from Beans Sam
  • Chris Dates's picture
    Chris Dates 4 years 22 weeks ago
    Abolishing Prisons
    Page Jim Davies
    KenK, What's sad is your inability to understand the principle of the argument. No one is trying to sell you some libertarian utopia here, we are simply explaining the natural conclusion of self-ownership. You are basically saying, "yeah, well, I've examined all your big-brained arguments, and I am still not convinced you own yourself." You seem to think you have some higher claim on my own life, because it's scary out there. Yeah, reality is scary, but it should not cause you to think and act irrationaly. And that is exactly what you are doing. You are basically denying that others own themselves because you have been a victim of crime. Your argument is a pragmatic one, and the libertarian position is one of principle. Tell me, how scared do YOU have to be to vote or advocate for my complete enslavement? That's what your argument is; you think you have the right to usurp my self-ownership because there are bad guys out there without realizing that you yourself have just become the bad guy. You have let the thug force your hand, and now you have become the thug. Like I said before, you can't rid the world of cannibals by eating them. What you are failing to realize is that you were still a victim of crime in a society that is dominated by laws. Go ahead and explain that one. No libertarian ever said that real evil would be erased in a libertarian society; we just want to stop adding to the evil. You would have been robbed in any society, sorry buddy, that's life. Now, how much crime does it take before you start spouting your pragmatism? What level of thuggery will it take to turn KenK into a thug? "In my 42 years I have been held up at gunpoint, had my apartment broken into, as well as my house, my car, and had my then wife's car stolen right out of our driveway. I won't mention all the minor stuff like items pilfered from my garage, or acts of vandalism, littering, trespassing and such because over the years there have been too many to count. Nor the disturbance of my peace and privacy individually b/c they are too many to count as well." Of all the crimes listed here, please pinpoint for me exactly when I lose ownership of myself. Since you are not arguing on principle, I would like to know what level of thuggery it takes to turn you into a thug. I know you said that you were done with this chat, but if you could just clear that up for me it would be nice. Thanks in advance. If you don't want to bother with such things, please formulate a principled argument as to why you think you have a higher claim to my life than I do, and then we can discuss that "reasoning" you were talking about.
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 4 years 22 weeks ago
    Abolishing Prisons
    Page Jim Davies
    @Jim Davies Yeh. It's been interesting. But to my mind sadly predictable in its outcome though. Let me start what will very likely be my last post on this thread to say that what I am about to relate isn't meant as a taunt, flame, or trolling bait directed at any person, esp. not Mr. Davies. In my 42 years I have been held up at gunpoint, had my apartment broken into, as well as my house, my car, and had my then wife's car stolen right out of our driveway. I won't mention all the minor stuff like items pilfered from my garage, or acts of vandalism, littering, trespassing and such because over the years there have been too many to count. Nor the disturbance of my peace and privacy individually b/c they are too many to count as well. The at-gunpoint robbery was the most scary, but one of my smaller losses. About $50. The break-ins to residences were horrible and scary too, but not because of the losses. The insurance companies I had policies with ate most of that. It was smoldering anger and sense of humiliation that lumpen low-lifes can and did just enter our family's home take what they fancied and then trashed the rest. Stomped my daughter's cat to death too. And lest you think that all this is because I lived in some urban ghetto hell-hole let me say that this was not the case at all. These major offenses listed above all happened in nice neighborhoods in good cities like Ann Arbor, MI, Renton, WA, Copperas Cove TX ( a not so upscale place, but decent), and Fayette, OH a tiny rural community. The Ohio Highway Patrol did recover the wife's car in Toledo, OH but it was a total write-off and I had to pay what was still owed and only recovered the "Blue Book" value minus 20 percent from the insurance coverage and which left us with one less car that we still had to make payments on. So I know both personally and financially what the cost of anti-social acts (i.e., "crime") is on people. Writing a check every month to pay for a car you need but don't have can put you in a mindset to support a call to bring back the Gestapo. Truly. Some people say that "a conservative is a liberal who has been mugged." I can see the hidden wisdom of that crack, too. So when I hear about needing to make a leap of faith about how "it'll all be better when 'we' (Democrats, Republicans, Communists, Greens, Surf Nazis for Christ, OWS, or fill-in-the-blank) are in charge" I feel a lot of doubt remembering how people really are and at the facts of history. So for me, this is not a leap of faith I'm willing to make. The Tannenhauses (sp?), Robert Murphy, David Friedman, Murray Rothbard and all the others in the canon of libertarian big-brains are just that not convincing, at least to me. Their theories and predictions don't square up with what I know via the written history of the world and my personal experience of being a crime victim. Sorry for the long rant but there it is; my conclusions and the reasoning behind them. No hyperlinks to the canon though just my plain words. Make of it what you will.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 22 weeks ago Page Robert L. Johnson
    Yeah, you're right Darkcrusade, another built in excuse; "There shall no sign be given unto this generation." (Mark 8:12) So-called Christian superstitionists love to throw that one around, when, in fact, JESUS [sic] was obviously dedicating that to "this", i.e. his, current "wicked and adulterous generation", not every "wicked and adulterous generation" before, or after, he made that declaration. Otherwise the very "wicked and adulterous generation" of Elijah would not have been given a sign. Otherwise you can't call that "Boy survives 15, 20, 25* minutes under water" a miracle of God, because that, of course, would be a "sign", from God. And, I am curious to ask, wouldn't you call JESUS' resurrection from the dead a "sign" to "this", i.e. his, current "wicked and adulterous generation"? * The reason the length of time varies from report to report is because it is based on the hearsay evidence of purported witnesses. Think about it rationally, if "there shall no sign be given unto this generation" were true of every generation, then all the prayers that appear to be answered are just coincidence, because the Christian god named JESUS said, unequivocally, "there shall be no sign given" (Mark 8:12). So, why would those who believe that "there shall be no sign given", seek a sign by praying? It makes no sense. Yes, PB Blaster is some really good stuff. One time I prayed that it would loosen the nut on my lawn mower blade, and it answered my petition...well, it seemed to anyway. A miracle is a "supernatural event", which in turn is, "a deviation from the known laws of nature". Therein lies the key, viz. "from the known laws of nature". Man, by his very nature, is an inquisitive animal; he always wants an explanation for everything he sees, hears and feels around him. The explanation for all those things he cannot yet explain "from the known laws of nature", he calls "supernatural", "Attributed to a power that seems to violate or go beyond natural forces[1]." Some individuals call this "power" God, others call it magic, and some simply call it unexplained, with what we know at this time. Then, of course, there are all the faked and lied about "miracles", designed to profit the "miracle worker", either by gaining him, (or his group), more believers/proselytes, more power, or more babel bux, or any combination thereof. As a individual secessionist ruled by the "Laws of Nature and of Nature's God", I am pretty much in agreement with these, "I know this world is ruled by infinite intelligence. Everything that surrounds us- everything that exists - proves that there are infinite laws behind it. There can be no denying this fact. It is mathematical in its precision" and "The game of life is the game of boomerangs. Our thoughts, deeds and words return to us sooner or later, with astounding accuracy." And, last, but not least, of course, I could be wrong about all of this. ______________________________________________________________________ [1] American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language
  • Sharon Secor's picture
    Sharon Secor 4 years 22 weeks ago Web link Melinda L. Secor
    Awewsome quote from the article: "Via Bryan Caplan, who says "In absolute terms, I'm not worried about being persecuted by child welfare services. But power-mad bureaucrats probably outnumber kidnappers and serial killers at least a thousand to one." Very true.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 4 years 23 weeks ago Page JGVibes
    Good job, JGVibes, these are analogies I'd not seen before. To my mind the big-gun idea is the better of the two, for the large numbers taking part in its construction and well-oiled operation are distanced somewhat from the blood and gore its firing will produce, and so can more easily take pride in their work. That's exactly how millions of government employees function. It reminds me of a popular WW-II image: Rosie the Riveter. After men had been drafted, the resulting shortage of labor was met by ladies, working for the first time in factories, often building munitions - riveting bomber wings for example. They could all marvel at the precision of the machine they were assembling, and take pleasure when it was flown off the factory airstrip. The resulting firestorms of Hamburg and Dresden, with ruined buildings (which had earlier been constructed by others with equal pride) and mangled bodies of children and mothers, were horrors to which they could easily close their minds.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 4 years 23 weeks ago
    Abolishing Prisons
    Page Jim Davies
    This has been so far an interesting exchange; thanks to all participants. I dare say we agree that in a zero-government society objectionable and violent behavior will occur much less often than today, for several reasons named above. But KenK has a valid question; however small the residue, how will it be handled? Those still asking it do need to study http://www.strike-the-root.com/81/davies/davies4.html under the title "Justice" - and for further reading, try Bruce Benson's "The Enterprise of Law" which details the extent to which private courts are _already_ operating. Also the shorter "The Market for Liberty" by the Tannehills has a good treatment in its chapters 7 thru 10, and page 225 ff in Rothbard's classic "For a New Liberty" is a must-read which has been around since 1973. Details differ among authors of the vision, but there is no doubt in my mind that a for-profit industry will evolve to serve a demand for restoration of stolen rights, which is what justice is actually all about. That's if an act of aggression ever needs it. A free society will be armed, as noted above, to the degree each individual member wishes; and street hooligans will live lives that are dangerous and probably short. The NAP which every member will have learned and understood will prevent the use of excessive force (otherwise the original aggressor could turn around and sue the original defender) but not too many disputes will require third party intervention. And yes of course, before any of this can take place everyone must learn and understand the nature of a free society. That's what TOLFA is for. Nobody here should neglect to participate.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 4 years 23 weeks ago
    Abolishing Prisons
    Page Jim Davies
    Fair question, S2. First, anyone posing a proximate threat to the life of a human being is placing himself at risk of immediate execution, as an act of self-defense by the intended victim. My article did mention that. In the free society I visualize, everyone will of course be free to own can carry such weapons as he sees fit, so that risk is non trivial. We are therefore considering only the survivors - those who repeatedly engage in violence and fall into the hands of the justice industry. They'll be few. Have you read my article on "Justice", to which a link is provided in the piece? - if not please do so, it's a courtesy I would appreciate. That in turn is excerpted from a longer work, _A Vision of Liberty_, and a link to that is shown in my bio at the foot of the article. I am really quite tired of hearing people moan and bleat about the way things are, yet who have miserably failed to sit down for a single hour and figure out a rational way to change them. That Trilogy describes a detailed method, operating now. The abolition of prisons is one of the many benefits having a zero government society. So, how would that free-market court decide how much violence was "enough" and shackle the monster so he can do no more? Answer: fairly, so as to as to maximize its reputation and profits in the justice marketplace. For me to quantify that would be premature; but a raw guess would in my mind be in the low single digits of murders. Where would you draw the line, if you were a judge in that environment? You mention this question is a "start". Again, please do the homework above before posing any others. I've done mine; now it's your turn.
  • Chris Dates's picture
    Chris Dates 4 years 23 weeks ago
    Abolishing Prisons
    Page Jim Davies
    KenK, You asked Jim to not bring the ideas of Rothbard and the like into the fray, but then you do the very thing you asked him to refrain from by saying... "If the lumpen prove to be a serious issue, then that issue will likely be resolved with brute force just as it is now; the only difference will be that the "brutes" will be private security employees instead of government police." Please explain why you make the jump from the government police being the "brutes" to the private security employees filling that role. I'm interested in knowing how you arrived at that conclusion, because I don't think it necessarily follows from that premise. It is wrong to think that every anarchist or stateless society advocate automatically believes in some sort of "private police" force. This is not always the case, because I don't believe it. I can't tell you what YOU will do, because I don't run your life, nor do I have the desire to. I can only tell you what I would do in desperate situations; the thing I think is the right thing to do at the moment. If I think a situation warrants gathering up a group of individuals to terminate a threat then so be it, but the thing about it KenK, is this: I would never force you to pay for it, because there is a special kind of injustice inherent in a system that is based on that principle. I would never let the things I fear in my own life become so overpowering that it turns me into a thug. I am not concerned with what happens to criminals; I do not let it consume my thoughts. The focus must be shifted from destruction to creation if we are ever to have a stateless society, and a focus on the criminal is a focus on destruction. So, not only is society constucted around the criminal, the "rule of law", but the criminal now lives in your head. I am guessing that there aren't any more than 2% of humans in this world that are actually evil. I'm talking about people who would cause some real terror. These are the ticks that the dog just can't seem to shake off, but the rational thing to do here is not to invite anymore bloodsuckers to join the party! Evil is a part of life, and we will never rid the planet of cannibals by eating them. We will have a stateless society when humans correctly identify evil, and they no longer have to be persuaded away from it. Your comments give me hope, because you are asking for persuasion. Only one more step left.
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 4 years 23 weeks ago
    Abolishing Prisons
    Page Jim Davies
    @voluntaryist Yep. It's all speculation. On Davies' part, and mine as well. I admit that. These facts are documented though. 1) The "New Soviet Man" and other ideological/social/religious constructs that were supposed to occur after a changed political system never happened. 2) The French Revolutionaries, Mao Zedong and Pol Pot among others all tried to create their just societies by razing the former social structures and killing off their dissenters, counter-revolutionaries, reactionaries, traitors, malcontents, lumpen, ownership classes, bureaucrats, kulaks, and all the rest. Yet the productive happy free society that was to be the refined remnant just was no where to be seen when all the smoke cleared away. And which brings me back to my original criticism of Mr. Davies' article. Which to restate was "...tell me in plain simple English sentences how people in an utterly stateless condition could deal with problems like street gangs, lumpen antics, and the rare but seriously violent actors without using police, prisons, or involuntary exile..". I think Davies' model would reduce and mitigate the problems we have now perhaps and maybe that's the best we can do. And I again want to thank him for even bothering to take the time to write it.
  • voluntaryist's picture
    voluntaryist 4 years 23 weeks ago
    Abolishing Prisons
    Page Jim Davies
    KenK: Since we don't have a "self-governing" society yet, all your doubts, and all our hopes, based on that society, are speculation. But we can look at some sub cultures where there is no violence and see the humanitarian progress. This strongly suggests that your concerns are misplaced. The choice is simple. Either we trust brute force (the state) or individuals choosing (self governing). The second way will contain irrationality but as time goes by it will diminish. What works will win out. This has not been the case when society accepts and bases it's social interactions on a fundamental falsehood, i.e., initiation of force works.
  • Darkcrusade's picture
    Darkcrusade 4 years 23 weeks ago Page Robert L. Johnson
    Mat 16:4 A wicked and adulterous generation seeketh after a sign; and there shall no sign be given unto it, but the sign of the prophet Jonas. And he left them, and departed. (That is what happened.) http://www.reasons.org/about/photo-gallery I much perfer 'power blaster' mo-better than wd-40. As you would say these superstionists get beter results> 'God can work miracles': Boy survives 25 minutes under water= http://www.komonews.com/news/local/127437853.html Or + http://www.huffingtonpost.com/craig-s-keener/miracles-in-the-bible-and-t... I know this world is ruled by infinite intelligence. Everything that surrounds us- everything that exists - proves that there are infinite laws behind it. There can be no denying this fact. It is mathematical in its precision. --Thomas A. Edison The game of life is the game of boomerangs. Our thoughts, deeds and words return to us sooner or later, with astounding accuracy. --Florence Shinn Gal 6:7 Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. I wonder,what you believe, did the universe will itself into existence? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DOjqpdlRFmo