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  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 26 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 26 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 26 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 26 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 26 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 26 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 26 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 26 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 26 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 26 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 26 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 26 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 26 weeks ago
    Abolishing Prisons
    Page Jim Davies
    Oh, and good article, Jim.
  • rita's picture
    rita 4 years 26 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 26 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 26 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 26 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 26 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 26 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 26 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 26 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 26 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 26 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 26 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 26 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 26 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 27 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 27 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 27 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 27 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
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 27 weeks ago
    Abolishing Prisons
    Page Jim Davies
    Out of respect for KenK, and so he doesn't feel "ganged up on", I will bow out of this conversation. I shall sit on the sidelines and enjoy.
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 4 years 27 weeks ago
    Abolishing Prisons
    Page Jim Davies
    I'm am not trying to dodge here but I don't want to be drawn into a lengthy debate more suited to a philosophy grad student seminar. I would just like for Jim or anyone who agrees with him to 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 which was the thrust of the article. If Jim can and does then great! I will admit that I am or could be wrong and will consider it further. I have no ego invested in this question. (Side note to Jim. I now regret my opening sentence. I provided no context for "revert to reality" and now see that it has been misunderstood. My bad.) Chris Dates People will build their living situations to deal with the condition they find themselves in. No more no less. 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. As to seriously dangerous sorts, I don't know. It took government police more than a decade and millions of dollars to find Unabomber, or the Grim Reaper suspect just to name but two. How a stateless society will address these types (esp. without forced exile and prisons) I will leave to the advocates for complete statelessness. I don't think it can myself. Rational people will construct their lives around being safe. Those that don't or whose efforts are inadequate or are just plain unlucky will suffer for it. Some people don't buy insurance for their homes because rationally they think the odds are on their side.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 27 weeks ago
    Abolishing Prisons
    Page Jim Davies
    So, KenK, your "reality" is, that with government firmly in control you no longer have "people for digging through garbage cans, trespassing, squatting, engaging in vandalism, petty theft, aggressive begging, or puking on the sidewalk and such"...is that correct? Perhaps if we called the society "we" envision, a "self-governing society", it would be more palatable. Imagine if we could teach people, by example, that to be self-governing, responsible, respectful, considerate individuals, was the highest goal of mankind? Would we achieve utopia? Probably not. But, would we be closer to it than we now are? In my opinion, yes.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 27 weeks ago
    Is Taxation Voluntary?
    Web link Westernerd
    Before even reading this, I must ask the same question I've asked here, perhaps, too many times before. Is identifying yourself as a "TAXPAYER", by using a Taxpayer Identification Number voluntary? I haven't used any of these in well over ten years, and not one single man or woman acting as an AGENT for any STATE, the UNITED STATES, the IRS, or any other CORPORATION has ever put a "gun to my head" and said I must use one. Now, I will say that every person around me, (with the exception of my natural law wife), does use a T.I.N., and a good many of them, if not most, refuse to do business with non-members, but they certainly have that right, just like COSTCO can refuse to do business with non-members, and so, I do not consider that force.
  • Chris Dates's picture
    Chris Dates 4 years 27 weeks ago
    Abolishing Prisons
    Page Jim Davies
    I also have a problem with KenK's comment of... "Now let us revert to reality." Philosophy moves the world; it shapes the reality we see around us. Of course, schizophrenics, murderers, and rapists will always be a reality no matter what philosophy is wearing the crown at the moment, but does this mean rational humans should construct their "systems" around the irrational? How many are actually out there? How many actual hard-core criminals, insane or not, actaully exist? It's rather hard to see, because the State has been so successful in selling the Big Lie, and that is this: We /are all/ criminals. We are scared of our own neighbors, and the State is the only thing keeping us safe. If the tyranny of democracy; the tryanny of the majority is wrong, then how is the tyranny of the criminal a just cause to build society around? Is this what you would consider the "rule of law"? KenK, should rational human beings construct their societies around the criminal? Is that a rational thing to do?
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 4 years 27 weeks ago
    Abolishing Prisons
    Page Jim Davies
    Thanks for the come-back, KenK. So you say "reality" is not determined by ideas we may have about it. Doesn't that contradict, however, the thrust of your earlier post here? - for you did appear to say that the situation prevailing today (a government-infested, crime-ridden society) consists of "reality" - and you did contrast it with what I'd written about the nature of a free society, some years in the future. You did seem to me to be implying that my description could never constitute reality, that it could never work. Your opener was "Now let us revert to reality." We are in sync well enough if what you meant to say was something like "looks wonderful, but how do we get from today's reality to tomorrow's possible reality?" - and I have a few answers available for that. But I hope we agree now on the difference - between scorning an ideal as impossible of realization, on the one hand, and questioning or even doubting how it can be achieved - and, perhaps, whether it would be stable if it _was_ achieved, or unstable and therefore Utopian. Your post did prompt me, though, to search for crime statistics, and I found something interesting at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crime_in_the_United_States. There is a _huge variation_ over time, within the US - and between different countries, an even more massive difference! Typically the US has _three times_ the violent crime rate found in Canada, France, or Britain - societies very comparable in other ways. I suspect the numbers for Russia and central America because they are so wildly out of line, but it says Russia is thirteen times more violent even than the USA! From this I see that the prevalence of violence varies enormously _even within government-run societies_. When government has been abolished, with all the violence it fosters, these numbers suggest we shall see reductions counted in orders of magnitude. Yes there will be a problem still (and I found no stats for pissers on the street, so must rely on your own expertese there:-) but as Paul confirms, it won't be very big.
  • Marc's picture
    Marc 4 years 27 weeks ago Web link Guest
    The bogus justification for this waste of tax dollars seems to be that the Keene Bearcat is useful in school shooting situations. Really? As far as school shootings go, I thought the problem was that the police won't risk entering a school building until long after the shooters have either tired of their rampage and killed themselves or been overcome and restrained by one or more brave unarmed students.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 27 weeks ago Web link Guest
    Very good! Thank you, BrianAnderson.
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 4 years 27 weeks ago
    Abolishing Prisons
    Page Jim Davies
    Okay Jim, here goes. "Reality" is a condition that exists independently of ideas concerning it. That's my working definition. As to Bonneau's point of the lumpen being killed off pretty quickly: I have to respond that I doubt that would happen either unless the community is or devolves into a Hobbesian condition to where people will shoot other people for digging through garbage cans, trespassing, squatting, engaging in vandalism, petty theft, aggressive begging, or puking on the sidewalk and such. 90 percent of these lot don't do anything "bad enough" to warrant getting shot. That does not mean the lumpen don't harm a community in major ways. My experience is that just a few of them can make a community very unpleasant to live or work in. In any event I appreciate the responses to my points and again I commend all efforts toward a freer and more humane society.
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 4 years 27 weeks ago Page painkilleraz
    The drug war is not a failure. It has been wildly successful, from the point of view of the ruling class. For them, failure would be ending it.
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 4 years 27 weeks ago
    Abolishing Prisons
    Page Jim Davies
    Jim's right. Even if you restrict yourself to utilitarian arguments, there is a very low bar here. It just has to be better than the current situation, which would be exceedingly easy. A free or natural society will still have the occasional ugly or nasty person. Interaction of that person with society will either straighten him out or kill him. No big deal either way. Hard cases make poor law, as they say, and they also make for poor ways to design societies. Let's not let our irrational fears about exceedingly rare events get the better of us. Society is something we have to put up with every single day.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 27 weeks ago
    Abolishing Prisons
    Page Jim Davies
    Murder, if defined as the intentional taking of an innocent human's life, usually for profit or for pleasure, I would draw the line in the low single digits, as well -- ONE! Fair enough, Jim Davies, I will do some more homework before commenting again.
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 4 years 27 weeks ago Page JGVibes
    Excellent article. I would like to suggest an extension to this idea though. At the risk of being accused of blaming the victim, I think part of this machinery of compliance is the citizen himself. Just as the bureaucrat files papers and sends mail to people, seemingly innocent actions, the recipient of that mail usually complies with no visible sign of resistance. You write, "...everyone who keeps that state well-oiled and in working order is able to maintain a safe and healthy distance from all of the violence that is taking place." What does that not describe, but the citizen himself? What if, rather than automatically complying with laws and regulations, citizens simply ignored them and waited for the threat that must follow, and then complied? If nothing else, it forces the bureaucrat to actually issue the threat and face up to the violence he is involved in. It would also slow down the machinery in general, and since so much of it is barely on the edge of functional, might push it over the edge. One favorite example is homeschooling. Homeschoolers are required to register as such, almost a pro-forma requirement, yet a significant fraction simply refuses. One might ask what areas of human behavior have become even more free over time, unlike what seems normal, becoming less free? Homeschooling is one of them. Noncompliance is arguably the reason. John Ross, in his book "Unintended Consequences", noted that the feeling of guilt often accompanies being the victim of a rape. Why would a victim feel guilt? He thinks because the victim did nothing at all, not only to stop her own rape, but that of others who would be sure to follow hers. Every time we find a chance at a law or regulation to ignore or break, we seriously ought to consider it.
  • Tony Pivetta's picture
    Tony Pivetta 4 years 27 weeks ago Page Robert L. Johnson
    Lawrence: Lighten up. I don't understand where you're getting that I'm filled with vitriol. Neither did I ever accuse you of being an atheist. For that matter, I don't care whether you are an atheist. Some of my best friends are atheists. Honest. But we're talking past each other at this point. Peace.
  • Lawrence M. Ludlow's picture
    Lawrence M. Ludlow 4 years 27 weeks ago Page Robert L. Johnson
    Tony: The source of your anger, then, appears to be OTHER people who spout vitriol about the church. I did none of that in my comment, and I even indicated my sincere sadness that Augustine betrayed himself -- which is exactly what you just did in pointing out that he was a man of his time. You have ASS-U-ME-ED that I am one of the angry atheists, and as a result felt it necessary to sweep me up in your grand drama as you battle them fearlessly from your laptop. We all know what happens when we assume, don't we? But since you have not read Augustine, perhaps you should not imply that I have misrepresented him. I am dealing with facts, not opinions . Similarly, Peter Brown's books and essays on Augustine are among the most widely respected in the medieval field -- which I have studied for more than 35 years. I've read all of Augustine's major works -- and those of Jerome as well. Not to mention the correspondence between them. And their theological essays. I have great respect for much of what they have written -- which was easy to see in my initial comment. Perhaps you should reign in your anger at atheists and not project their qualities into the minds and hearts of others. If you took the time to read my other writings at STR and elsewhere, you would see that I have treated the church and its subject with a degree of respect: at STR see my essays on Jesus and taxation and on the environment, and see my essay on Pope John-Paul's death at lewrockwell.com (Autopsy of a Funeral).
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 4 years 27 weeks ago
    Abolishing Prisons
    Page Jim Davies
    Thank you, Kenk, for your first three words. I'm hung up, though, on the next six. "Reality"? - you describe a behavior pattern encountered today, and call that "real"? Presumably, that's what you mean by "reality" - something that happens right now, today; and if that guess is correct, I fear you have fallen headlong into a trap. That trap is to suppose without a shred of evidence that what is now must forever be; that today's actual experience is the permanent state of humankind. Do be sure of that, please, before we continue; for if you do, it means you accept no possibility of change, of improvement or rectification. You'd be saying that any and all attempts to better our race are doomed, that there will for ever be some who are "paranoid schizophrenic substance abusers that pees in the street, robs, steals, vandalizes, trespasses, aggressively begs, and threatens to assault passersby" - that this is normal human behavior, inscribed in our genes. If you really believe that, I'd like to see the argument laid out plainly, ready for me to demolish. Meanwhile, my reply to Suverans2 may suggest a fresh line of thought.
  • Sharon Secor's picture
    Sharon Secor 4 years 27 weeks ago Web link Guest
    That is so far past disgraceful that I am hard-pressed for appropriate words. Shameful behavior.
  • rita's picture
    rita 4 years 27 weeks ago
    Border Battleground
    Web link Guest
    Legalize drugs. Let people live in peace.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 27 weeks ago
    Natural Law
    Web link Don Stacy
    GOOD CITIZENS DON'T THINK Thinking leads to reasoning. Reasoning leads to right and wrong. Wrong leads to revolt. Revolt leads to bad citizens.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 27 weeks ago
    Abolishing Prisons
    Page Jim Davies
    G'day Jim Davies, Let us start with this. You wrote: "The only exceptions will be the tiny number who do repeated violence..." "Repeated violence?" Just wondering, how many violent repeats, such as rape, robbery and murder, would you envision before these monsters would be taken out of circulation?