Recent comments

  • JGVibes's picture
    JGVibes 4 years 20 weeks ago Page JGVibes
    i appreciate your well thought out response and your deep knowledge of religious history. I want to be clear that i am not attacking religion in any kind of way, i am simply pointing out how religious institutions in the past have have used the government to carry out acts of violence. we saw this with the crusades and the inquisition, that was what i was referring to when i said .."the church had the gun in the middle ages". i also agree that following Christs teachings to a T would result in a free society, but i wasnt really talking about christ here... just about specific religious institutions that forced their will into people in the past...many of these institutions proclaimed to be "christian" but thats besides the point...believe in religion doesent pose a threat...but using government to force your religion onto others is a bad thing i dont think that is being disingenuous, my only point here was, separating the church from the state did nothing to stop what the state was doing... it only changed their justification...before they said it was god, so people separated church and state, and nothing changed... today they say its money... so people want to get money out of politics...but again that wont do anything either... the true problem is power...which is politics itself ..i was simply saying that although the state used the church as a justification for the violence that they carried out in the middle ages, the source of violence was still the state...and it will always be the state...because the state is the "gun in the room" i hope that clarified my message a bit...and wasnt too ranty :-)
  • Tony Pivetta's picture
    Tony Pivetta 4 years 20 weeks ago Page JGVibes
    Interesting. You could be right. I thought state constitutions either provided for free (!) and compulsory (!!) public education, or created school districts with authority to do so. At any rate, you weren't advancing any theory of incorporation. I still hear libertarians insisting tax-funded Nativity scenes violate the U.S. Constitution. They do no such thing. The First Amendment merely bars the U.S. Congress from establishing a state religion. It says nothing about what the states may do. Not that I think it's a good idea for non-Christians to be compelled to promote Christianity in any way. Nor, for that matter, should Christians be compelled to promote secular humanism in any way--though that's precisely what they do when they pay taxes for government schools. I agree with your assessment of constitutions. Paraphrasing Lysander Spooner, they've either given us the government we have or been powerless to stop it. Either way, constitutions are of "no effect."
  • Jerry J Brown's picture
    Jerry J Brown 4 years 20 weeks ago Web link Melinda L. Secor
    The gov't is the biggest bully of all. And they don't share
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 4 years 20 weeks ago Page JGVibes
    My understanding (admittedly not rigorously tested) is that state constitutions created prior to about 1850, when state "education" was imported to America from Prussia, do not mention education at all (unless later amended to do so). Right around 1850, as with Oregon's constitution, it gives the state a role in "education" but does not make it compulsory. Later constitutions like Wyoming's adds a compulsory component. I bet very few actually call for 12 years of compulsory "education" though, even now. The unconstitutional part I was referring to was the compulsory part, where statute calls for compulsory "education" beyond what the state constitution allows. Some people claim state constitutions are plenary, i.e. that states are able to do anything the constitution does not explicitly prohibit, the reverse of the way the federal constitution is interpreted. I think that is nonsensical. But I also think that constitutions do not work in any practical sense, that they are more for show.
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 4 years 20 weeks ago Page Paul Hein
    "I would not be surprised to learn that they, and those who depend upon them, and retirees, and their families, and those doing business with the city, would be a significant proportion of the 43,000 who voted to compel their fellow St. Louisans to support them and their projects." Yes, we had this issue in Oregon. Oregon statute (or maybe constitution) mandated something like 6 different days a year to use for elections. The teacher's union of course would hold elections for tax hikes to "support schools" on the low-turnout election days - that is, days that weren't primary or general elections. And of course they came out in force on those days, days when most people didn't even know an election was going on. It got so bad that some irate citizens put an initiative on the ballot that any tax measure outside of the regular primary or general election dates requires at least a 50% turnout of registered voters to pass. You should have heard the hogs squeal when that passed!
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 4 years 20 weeks ago
    To Govern and Enslave
    Page Jim Davies
    Oh, one other nit: I think it is better to choose analogies that serve us rather than serving the ruling class, as I mentioned in this article: http://strike-the-root.com/some-problems-with-farm-analogy The ruling class probably would be happy if we started thinking of ourselves as slaves. It probably would be unhappy if we started thinking of them as parasites.
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 4 years 20 weeks ago
    To Govern and Enslave
    Page Jim Davies
    "In this light, I see it as being inaccurate to talk about "degrees of slavery" (and inversely, "degrees of liberty"). If we're talking about the "ability" to control, then the degree of slavery is basically always 0%, since the "slave's" mind still has 100% control over their body. But if we're talking about the exclusive right to control, then you cannot be partially enslaved and partially self-owning. Someone has the final authority (i.e., interference with this authority would be unjust). If it is you, then you have liberty (self-ownership). If it is not you, then you are a slave. Liberty/slavery clearly seem to me to be binary and mutually exclusive (antithetical - Slavery = not liberty. Liberty = not slavery)." Yes, I too have problems with this "government equals slavery" argument. Slavery is clearly not equivalent to having a government; instead it is an analogy, just like Molyneux's farm animal analogy. We are not literal slaves any more than we are literal farm animals. This explains why the thesaurus does not equate them - they aren't equivalent. As an analogy, we can reasonably say "we are treated like slaves" in some respect. We can't reasonably say "we are slaves". The other problem with saying "we are slaves" is that it doesn't resonate with the audience, while "we are treated like slaves" does resonate. So I would advise people not to go overboard with this stuff. When you see peoples' eyes glazing over, that's a clue...
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 4 years 20 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    They would because most people remain believers in the government religion. However as with conventional religion, most people do not believe that adherence to one mandates literal war with all others.
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 4 years 20 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    "For an anarchist enclave to form, there would have to be some kind of secession, right?" Not necessarily. It only means that for example, enforcers see it is in their own self-interest not to enter the anarchist community. In various times and places enforcers have operated this way, at least unofficially. After all, they don't get paid so much that any and all threats, complications, and pains in the ass are worth it. Most government employees want a life of ease and security, not strife and danger. There is also the notion of pro-forma compliance. A community might have a sheriff as required by state law, but it might be a sheriff who does nothing. The first anarchist communities will no doubt fly under the radar with such dodges. But this is somewhat beside the point of the article. I was trying to do mainly two things - determine what the general population would tolerate (testing the indoctrination) which after all has some effect on the actions of government, and also to use the discussion as a foil for educating people about anarchism (although the latter was almost an accidental or ad hoc aim).
  • Tony Pivetta's picture
    Tony Pivetta 4 years 20 weeks ago Page JGVibes
    Like all libertarians I oppose "public" education. The government should have no role in it at all. Strictly speaking, though, only federal involvement in education is unconstitutional. Whether the various states' provision of education is constitutional depends on each state's constitution. I believe all 50 states make provision for it, which includes the "longer and longer periods of indoctrination."
  • Tony Pivetta's picture
    Tony Pivetta 4 years 20 weeks ago Page JGVibes
    This is a truncated and grossly overstated, not to say distorted, summary of Church-state history. It will take more than just an FYI to correct it. I'll give it shot anyway. "In the Middle Ages, the Catholic Church had control of the gun"?! This would certainly be news to St. Ambrose of Milan, the Archbishop of Canterbury St. Thomas a' Kempis, and Pope St. Gregory VII. Take a cursory tour through the pages of Wikipedia when you get a chance. Read about these high-profile prelates' bitter conflicts with the civil authorities of their day: the Emperor Theodosius, King Henry II of England, and Holy Roman Emperor Henry IV. For that matter, read the Jewish agnostic Murray Rothbard's account of the development of capitalism in Medieval Europe. He attributes it to political competition. The Holy Roman Emperor, kings, dukes, earls, knights, the guilds, merchants, feudal lords, simple peasants and, yes, the Church were all very protective of their turf. The patchwork laid the groundwork for property and individual rights and the marketplace. If you can't have anarchy, radical decentralization is the next best thing. In sharp contrast, the pagan authorities of ancient Rome did not differentiate between faith and state. Neither does Islam. Neither do run-of-the-mill secular humanists. (This gang aggressively rejects traditional religious mores, even as it insists on translating its effete, not to say warped, notions of the good—e.g., taxpayer-funded abortion, drug prohibition, equal employment diktats—into civil law.) The bifurcation between temporal and spiritual is entirely a Western, i.e., Catholic, development. At various times and places, Catholic monarchs may well have melded church and state in ways not consistent with the libertarianism readers of this website espouse. At various times and places, the Church may well have failed to disabuse them of the notion they should be melded. But the Church always upheld a fundamental distinction between the two. That's a lot more than I can say for the Enlightment jihadists who turned Notre Dame Cathedral into a shrine to Athena (goddess of Reason, don't you know?), even as they rampaged through the Vendee, perpetrating wholesale slaughter of priests and faithful peasants alike. For many of us, Christianity informs our anarchy. We believe in applying the rules governing human behavior in truly universal fashion: no exemption from "thou shalt not steal" and "thou shalt not kill" for politicians, bureaucrats or generals. Yes, institutional Christianity's record is somewhat checkered in this regard. But cavalier summations and sweeping generalizations do nothing to advance your message, which is quite elegantly and succinctly stated in your concluding paragraph.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 4 years 20 weeks ago
    To Govern and Enslave
    Page Jim Davies
    I'm wondering why the 14th Amendment made any difference to our status as selfowning human beings. Sources like http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eskimo_words_for_snow say that the Sami people of the far North of Scandinavia use several hundred different words for "snow;" wet and heavy, light and fluffy, glazed, and so on. Governments, likewise, use many different words to try to justify their miserable existence; divinely appointed monarchies, heroic "leaders", constitutionally limited ones, and in this case, if I understand you, Suversans2, something like a group of thugs fronting for a financial oligarchy better known as a "corporation." All these purport to govern, and therefore all of them enslave; that's the point of my article. It granted that there are degrees of slavery (and therefore of savagery in government) but government is government no matter the degree, just as snow is snow no matter the style. All of it it totally irreconcilable with selfowning human nature, and therefore all of it must go; and it won't go voluntarily, Am 14 or no Am 14. Government's name for me (citizen, employee, resident subject to its jurisdiction, civilian, etc etc) is irrelevant; my real name is only what I call myself and so it is for each of us.
  • Chris Dates's picture
    Chris Dates 4 years 20 weeks ago
    To Govern and Enslave
    Page Jim Davies
    Well, at least /I/ was enjoying the conversation! :-) Cheers.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 20 weeks ago
    To Govern and Enslave
    Page Jim Davies
    Chris Dates, "Nope, no desire to get back to the original argument." So, if I'm not there, start without me. ;-)
  • Chris Dates's picture
    Chris Dates 4 years 20 weeks ago
    To Govern and Enslave
    Page Jim Davies
    Suverans2, Well, I think involuntary slavery can still be very possible. A person can still be held by force, and made to perform acts that are not of their own will. However, this is very different than voluntary slavery, which I would assume would be contractual. Think about this, if there was a voluntary contact between the "slave" and the "master" then there would be some kind of governance over the two parties: there would be "rules" for the relationship. Therefore, the master could never have "exclusive rights" or "absolute command" over the slave, because the contract was specifically drawn up to preserve the rights of either party. There is still problem even if the person just tried to sell himself into slavery with no contract, and here is why: In involuntary slavery, the master has chosen to use aggressive force to take the slave, therefore he has abandoned all moral human law to take this slave. This is VERY IMPORTANT to consider when comparing the concepts of voluntary and involuntary slavery. The master has essentially chosen to become a thug, and has chosen to use the way of force and not of reason. Since this is the case, this master has come a little closer to that "absolute command" we were tallking about, since he has already shown himself to be aggressive. But this is much different than the voluntary slave, and here is why... The voluntary slave is basically offering his "services" on the market. We are begging the question if we just assume any potential new master of this so-called slave would be willing to break moral human law(natural law), and take him as a slave with "absolute command", and that is our problem. There has been no crime yet, because there has been no aggression. The master of the involuntary slave has chosen to use aggression to force another to perform acts against their will, so it is not unreasonable to say that this master may severely hurt, rape, or even murder this chattel slave. When the voluntary slave offers his services on the market, he is still assuming that their new master will abide by moral natural law, BECAUSE it does not stand to reason that the voluntary slave would offer their services otherwise. Think about that, why would they? If the new master could potentially severely harm, rape, or murder them, WHY would they ever offer their services on THAT market? The voluntary slave would be offering immorality for sale on the market if they did not assume that the natural law would stay in place as they agreed upon the voluntary slavery conditions. Why would any rational human being enter into a contract where death would forever be a very real possibility? Agreements do not relieve either party from morality. Period. Putting immorality for sale on the market does not make it moral. "Voluntary slavery" is a contradiction in terms, and dig this, voluntary slavery is impossible because involuntary slavery is possible. I hope that makes sense. It's just like the difference between aggression and reason; morality and immorality.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 20 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    You are absolutely right, well, not "absolutely" in the strictest sense of the word, about that; just look at what happened to the Doukhobors of Leo Tolstoy's day.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 20 weeks ago
    To Govern and Enslave
    Page Jim Davies
    Chris Dates, Ummm, it didn't become an argument about the Constitution (of these united States), in my opinion. But, I may have jumped to the wrong conclusion about this statement from you, ""My Constitution" is just as much yours as it is mine! :-)" If you are not a citizen of the United States, then I must apologize, once again. Not sure what "fallacies" you are referring to. Yes, I am the one that used the phrase, "your Constitution"", followed by "(presuming you are a 14th Amendment citizen)", which admits that you may not be. And, yes, I am the one that used the phrase "or your government", because I didn't know if it was you making the claim that, it was just as much mine as yours, "or your government", if you have one, that was making that claim. Nope, no desire to get back to the original argument. I agree, old Noah's use of the word "absolute" is apparently inappropriate. If we hold that word to its strictest interpretation then there is no such thing as slavery, period. I am absolutely mortified by this...well, not "absolutely", in the strictest sense of the word. :-)
  • rita's picture
    rita 4 years 20 weeks ago Web link Westernerd
    Of course they do.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 4 years 20 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    As individuals, yes I agree - most of them behave in their private capacity much as "civilians." By "government people" I was thinking more of those who form and execute the will of government in their official capacities. For an anarchist enclave to form, there would have to be some kind of secession, right? - a government-free zone. Since 1861, it's been clear that governments do not tolerate those very well. In fact, one might reason that in their own survival interest they _dare_ not tolerate them. Once one such enclave forms and prospers, there will be an insatiable demand for more.
  • Chris Dates's picture
    Chris Dates 4 years 20 weeks ago
    To Govern and Enslave
    Page Jim Davies
    Suverans2, How did this just become an argument about the Constitution(of these united States)? Again with the fallacies. You are the one that used the phrases, "your Constitution", and, "your government". Then you accuse me of pushing it on you? Wow. We are now far afield of the original argument, and I have no desire to debate "my constitution" or "my government" with you. Mr. Spooner has already done that for me. Do you have any desire to get back to the original argument?
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 20 weeks ago
    To Govern and Enslave
    Page Jim Davies
    "All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the state wherein they reside." ~ Excerpted from the 14th Amendment to the United States Constitution The Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution grants citizenship to everyone born in the US and subject to its [political] jurisdiction. I am not "subject to the jurisdiction thereof", because my allegiance is to the natural law, the "laws of nature [the "natural law of the human world"] and nature's God". Quod prius est verius est; et quod prius est tempore potius est jure. What is first is truest; and what comes first in time, is best in law. Co. Litt. 347. ~ Bouvier's Law Dictionary (c.1856)  [Emphasis added] "This law of nature being coeval[1] with mankind[2]" is, of course, "first in time", thus it is "best in law". The law of nature is superior in obligation to any other. It is binding in all countries and at all times. No human laws are valid if opposed to this, and all which are binding derive their authority either directly or indirectly from it. ~ Institutes of American Law by John Bouvier, (c.1851), Part I, Title II, No. 9 ________________________________________________________ [1] COEVAL, a. Of the same age; beginning to exist at the same time; of equal age; usually and properly followed by with. ~ Webster's 1828 American Dictionary of the English Language [Emphasis added] [2] 1 W. Blackstone, Commentaries at 41
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 20 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    Just read your article, Paul, VERY GOOD, but (I know, get your "butt" out of the way), I happened to see this comment or reply before completing it. I am of the opinion that 14th Amendment citizens, i.e. "citizens of the United States", are "employees" of the United States corporation.
  • Xerographica's picture
    Xerographica 4 years 20 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    Here's my argument why there's no point to argue for anarcho-capitalism. Let's say that taxpayers were allowed to choose which government organizations received their own, individual, hard earned taxes. If taxpayers were truly satisfied with the private provision of A,B,C then why would they voluntarily allocate any of their own, individual, hard earned taxes to the public provision of A,B,C?
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 20 weeks ago
    To Govern and Enslave
    Page Jim Davies
    Chris Dates, Let's jump to that last one, first. What is your Constitution? If it is the United States Constitution; from whence did you, or your government, get the lawful authority to compel me to continue one of a political corporation?
  • Chris Dates's picture
    Chris Dates 4 years 20 weeks ago
    To Govern and Enslave
    Page Jim Davies
    Suverans2, All I'm saying is that there might be a problem with the "voluntary slavery" theory. I don't think it's possible, if we assume there is some sort of moral law. I want to keep the focus on voluntary slavery; not chattel or forced slavery, because I think we agree on that issue. Let's go back to your definition... >>Slavery is also voluntary or involuntary; voluntary, when a person sells or yields his own person to the absolute command of another; involuntary, when he is placed under the absolute power of another without his own consent. ~ Webster's 1828 American Dictionary of the English Language Then you said... "Your master cannot, LAWFULLY, command you to do anything that is unlawful, that is to say, against the "natural law of the human world". If he does, and then forces you to do such an act, he should be held accountable for the act, and not you." This is a contradiction, because you are counting on the slave and the master already agreeing that there is a natural law of the human world, and they have both agreed upon it(implicitly or explicitly). If these two parties have agreed on the governing principles of "natural law" and choose to do business under these laws, then neither party could ever have "absolute command" of each other. Words have meanings, and "absolute" is a big one. One might say that voluntary slavery is possible in the context of the natural law, and the slave owner may have "absolute command" within the context of this law, but then it's not absolute is it? It is wrong to place humans--autonomous, volitional, conceptualizing creatures--in the same context as someone's vehicle as BrianDrake did. No other "property"(as if another human could ACTUALLY be property of another) has the ability to conceptualize morality, and that makes 100% ownership a real bitch. Libertarians tend to be a "either I own it or I don't" bunch, and this is impossible with human beings; we use the law of the excluded middle to show others how taxation is theft; 1% tax is just as wrong as 100% tax; 1% theft is just as wrong as 100% theft. This means I own something 100% or I don't own it at all. Since the voluntary slave has the right to object on moral grounds, or on the grounds of natural law, I don't have "exclusive rights" to the voluntary slave. He retains some rights. If BrianDrake was to sell me that car, he would lose all rights to it, but if he was to sell me a slave, my new "property", the slave, would retain some rights, and that just does not sound right to me. Before we apply libertarian property rights theory to human beings we have to examine the nature of the "property", because it is much different than other property. Do you agree? I also realize I am begging the question assuming the voluntary slave has the right to object on the grounds of morality, but I can make a pretty good case for it, and defend the position if I had to(but it tends to be a long one!). I've heard minarchists reject anarchy on these grounds, so I ran their argument through the logic mill and found some errors. I don't think it's possible. What do you think? Oh and BTW, I am assuming that you are not from this country, but I will tell you this... "My Constitution" is just as much yours as it is mine! :-)
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 4 years 20 weeks ago Page JGVibes
    Just an FYI. Early on, I don't believe 12 years of "education" was required. In the 1859 Oregon constitution, there is no requirement at all; it only says the state will provide "education". In the Wyoming constitution (1889 I think) there is compulsory education, but only 3 years is required. Of course later (generally unconstitutional) statutes called for longer and longer periods of indoctrination.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 20 weeks ago
    To Govern and Enslave
    Page Jim Davies
    G'day Sam, We are not talking about "business and sales" here, we're talking law. ;) Actus me invito factus, non est meus actus. An act done by me against my will, is not my act. ~ Bouvier's 1856 Law Dictionary Imagine, if you can, someone putting a gun to one of my Grandchild's heads and commanding me to rob a bank for him. I realize that I can still choose to rob or not to rob, but would you say that robbing that bank is something I want to do, or would you say that I am being coerced, "against my will", into doing it?
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 4 years 20 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    Well, that''s why I wanted to filter out the government employees, thinking they would skew the results. But if you think about it, that makes no sense. For one thing, not all government employees would have a problem with an independent community. They are individuals too. For another thing, government employees affect what happens just as much as (if not more than) everybody else. So they really have to be included.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 20 weeks ago
    To Govern and Enslave
    Page Jim Davies
    Chris Dates, I sincerely apologize if I offended you with my use of those two words. Please know that they were not in reference to you, personally. Your master cannot, LAWFULLY, command you to do anything that is unlawful, that is to say, against the "natural law of the human world". If he does, and then forces you to do such an act, he should be held accountable for the act, and not you. The Maxim of Law that a JUDGE, in your jurisdiction, should use in ITS decision is this: Actus me invito factus, non est meus actus. An act done by me against my will, is not my act. ~ Bouvier's 1856 Law Dictionary Perhaps we all are using the wrong word? The XIII Amendment to your Constitution, (presuming you are a 14th Amendment citizen), is worded in the following way, "Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction." The inverse of that is that voluntary servitude may constitutionally "exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction." Would "voluntary servitude" be a more agreeable phrase, to you? Servitude. The state of a person who is subjected, voluntarily or otherwise, to another person* as his servant. ~ Black's Law Dictionary, Sixth Edition (c. 1991), page 1370 * I believe you will find that the STATE is a "legal person". Involuntary servitude. The condition of one who is compelled by force, coercion, or imprisonment, and against his will, to labor for another, whether he is paid or not.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 4 years 20 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    Very creative, Paul! Most interesting result. Am I right in supposing that the views of this gun-rights group would _not_ be echoed by government people, if such an enclave were actually formed?
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 20 weeks ago Web link Guest
    G'day rita, You may, or may not, already know this but if you hold down your control (ctrl) key and at the same time hit, as many times as necessary, the + key on your number pad, it will magnify the page. This makes that page much easier to read. To reverse this, while holding down the ctrl key once more, start poking the - (minus) key on your number pad. Something else that sometimes helps is to hold your left mouse button, and drag your cursor over what you are trying to read (like you are going to "copy" it); this will generally give it a blue background, until you click you mouse button on the page once more.
  • rita's picture
    rita 4 years 20 weeks ago Web link Guest
    How to keep anyone from ever reading anything you post. White print on a black background. Very effective.
  • Jim Davies's picture
    Jim Davies 4 years 20 weeks ago Page Jakub Bozydar W...
    In the Primary circus, they are spending scores of million of dollars to find answers to your questions, and are still getting them wrong. Nice job, Jakub. (Many apologies for calling you "Tzo" in my first attempt to make this comment. A simple blunder, no malice intended.) You could have written a Very Long Q&A. Thanks for taking the time, as Mark Twain said once he could not, to make it short.
  • Chris Dates's picture
    Chris Dates 4 years 20 weeks ago
    To Govern and Enslave
    Page Jim Davies
    Suverans2, You are using words like "ridiculous" and "foolishness" then you accuse me of being "aggressive". Please focus on the argument, and not so much on me. I would just like you to defend your definition and your position. >>Slavery is also voluntary or involuntary; voluntary, when a person sells or yields his own person to the absolute command of another; involuntary, when he is placed under the absolute power of another without his own consent. ~ Webster's 1828 American Dictionary of the English Language "If we don't take this to ridiculous levels, voluntary slavery is, according to Noah, "when a person sells or yields his own person to the absolute command of another". This means he has voluntarily relinquished the "right" to object, nothwithstanding that he still has the "ability" to do so." Are you unwilling to defend the definition you provided? The definition EXPLICITLY states "absolute command". It is "ridiculous" to take it to "absolute" levels? If my master commands me to murder, do I have to follow the command absolutely? Yes or no. Does a voluntary slavery contract exclude either party from morality? If the voluntary slave retains the right to object on moral grounds, then the master does not have "exclusive rights" to the slave. The final arbiter in the matter is the slave.
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 4 years 20 weeks ago
    To Govern and Enslave
    Page Jim Davies
    An axiom of business and sales is this: Nobody, NOBODY does a thing unless and until s/he wants to do it. (Sort of the sequel to, "The customer is always right) Sam
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 4 years 20 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    Sorry about taking so long to respond; sometimes I forget to revisit these threads. "The moment the liberals and conservatives concede they may only "battle over the election process" with other willing participants, and not those who say no, there is no State..." Your error here is in speaking collectively. What I am talking about is a change of individuals. The State (to speak collectively for the moment) does not do anything it pleases; it must concern itself with legitimacy (or to be more accurate, the appearance of legitimacy). Eventually enough statists will disapprove of state action against anarchists, and then it will stop happening (probably in the same way that Catholics stopped approving of persecution of Protestants, in Catholic majority areas). We don't imagine the Catholic Church has ceased to exist because there is now tolerance of non-Catholics. "But you're wrong, that's the largest change possible for them. Tolerance is the crux of the matter. It is what distinguishes us, the anarchists, from EVERYONE ELSE. Again, if 'just tolerance, that's all' was so simple, we'd already be living in glorious anarchy. " No, I disagree. Most people are actually quite tolerant, and getting more so as time goes on. We no longer kill gays or string up dark people or beat Catholics, for the most part. The people we call "statists" simply have one area of inconsistency in their generally tolerant behavior, an area that has been carefully cultivated by the state through indoctrination camps and the Ministry of Propaganda. It is that simple. The reason we're not living in glorious anarchy is because it is hard to break through that indoctrination, through worldviews implanted by the state. It usually takes some kind of shock to break through - and we certainly face a major shock in the short-term future. As to successes, I actually have been having successes in internet discussions. If for example people want socialized healthcare, instead of arguing against socialism (well, I still do, but try to tone it down) I just tell them I agree they should have it and hope they get it. And even that I will do everything I can to help them get it. But I also say I don't want any part of it myself, neither the "care" nor the taxes to support it. I tell them I want to live in my own way. This really defuses their opposition. But if they decide to agree with me, I'm not going to start calling them an anarchist, any more than Catholics should be called Protestants when they start tolerating Protestants.
  • Chris Dates's picture
    Chris Dates 4 years 20 weeks ago
    To Govern and Enslave
    Page Jim Davies
    Suverans2, I was not meaning to be aggressive in my posts, and I apologize if my tone could have been taken as such. Let's get back to the issue. When phrases and words like "exclusive right", and "absolute command" are used, I will challenge these things, because if I don't then it is assumed that these things are true, and the argument will begin from there. I will not let you get away with begging the question, sorry. If it is possible for another human to have "exclusive rights" over another human, fine, prove it without using logical fallacies. I have exclusive rights and absolute command over my car. If I put a brick on the gas pedal and run my car into a group of people, then I am responsible for my acts. If I tell my slave to go and slaughter that same group of people, and he does, HE is responsible for it. He can only be responsible if he has ownership of his acts, and in order for him to have ownership of his acts, he has to have ownership of himself, and this can never be sold. A human being cannot disown their consequences. Period. Therefore, they cannot sell themselves into slavery. It's impossible. So we don't commit anymore fallacies, what does "self" mean to you? We've defined ownership, now let us define "self". Jim Davies is right in his essay.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 20 weeks ago Web link Sharon Secor
    Why, of course, buying bulk foods to increase the probability of surviving a terrorist attack, is a "potential terrorist activity". Round and round we go, and where we stop, nobody knows.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 20 weeks ago
    To Govern and Enslave
    Page Jim Davies
    Aggressive, aren't we Chris Dates. Sorry about the typo, and I will try not to bother you again. Have a great day.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 20 weeks ago Web link Sharon Secor
    "...it is just deception, a ruse, a tool to obtain power on the part of the government, just a part of the process of stripping away as many of our rights as possible." ~ Sharon Secor Absolutely! Those in power are trying to give validity to what they are doing, so as not to stampede the herd. "Disagreeing with anything we say or do is terrorism", is what it is slowly(?) coming down to.
  • Chris Dates's picture
    Chris Dates 4 years 20 weeks ago
    To Govern and Enslave
    Page Jim Davies
    >>Slavery is also voluntary or involuntary; voluntary, when a person sells or yields his own person to the absolute command of another; involuntary, when he is placed under the absolute power of another without his own consent. ~ Webster's 1828 American Dictionary of the English Language If we don't take this to ridiculous levels, voluntary slavery is, according to Noah, "when a person sells or yields his own person to the absolute command of another". This means he has voluntarily relinquished the "right" to object, nothwithstanding that he still has the "ability" to do so. Ummm...you are wrong. The slave did NOT relinquish the "right" to object because the slave is still part of the morality pool. Get it? If I sold myself into slavery, and my master commanded me to murder, I would still have the RIGHT(yes the freakin' RIGHT) to object, because it's morally wrong to murder. Do you get that? It's not ridiculous, you are just failing to grasp the deeper philosophical point I am trying to make. So, again, he has the ability as well as the RIGHT, to object on the grounds of morality, because the slave did not relieve himself from morality when he signed his foolish contract. Do you at least agree with this? I don't care what Noah has to say about it. The only way the master can have "absolute command" of another is if he assumes all responsibility for the slave's acts. Hence my argument here wich you charged as utter foolishness.... >>"If I were to sell myself into slavery, I would make sure the contract explicitly stated that I am now relieved of all things moral, and only my master would pay the price for my acts. Then I would just turn and kill my so-called master. Now who's the sucker?" Chris Date ...is utter foolishness, (only a fool would agree to such a "contract"), and as such, deserves only this response. And my last name is not "Date" please correct your error.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 20 weeks ago Web link Sharon Secor
    "You go girl!"
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 20 weeks ago
    To Govern and Enslave
    Page Jim Davies
    "Since the slave retains the ability and the RIGHT to object, the master will never have the "exclusive right" to control." ~ Chris Dates First: Slavery is also voluntary or involuntary; voluntary, when a person sells or yields his own person to the absolute command of another; involuntary, when he is placed under the absolute power of another without his own consent. ~ Webster's 1828 American Dictionary of the English Language If we don't take this to ridiculous levels, voluntary slavery is, according to Noah, "when a person sells or yields his own person to the absolute command of another". This means he has voluntarily relinquished the "right" to object, nothwithstanding that he still has the "ability" to do so. Involuntary slavery is theft, which is why it is called "man stealing". Manstealing, n. The act or business of stealing or kidnaping human beings, especially with a view to eslave them. ~ Webster's Revised Unabridged, 1913 Edition, page 892 Theft does not effect the "right" of ownership, only the "ability" to control the thing, or person, that has been stolen. And this, in my opinion... "If I were to sell myself into slavery, I would make sure the contract explicitly stated that I am now relieved of all things moral, and only my master would pay the price for my acts. Then I would just turn and kill my so-called master. Now who's the sucker?" Chris Date ...is utter foolishness, (only a fool would agree to such a "contract"), and as such, deserves only this response.
  • Chris Dates's picture
    Chris Dates 4 years 20 weeks ago
    To Govern and Enslave
    Page Jim Davies
    BrianDrake, If you were to sell me that car you mentioned, I would have the exclusive right to all that makes up that car; every single nut & bolt, all the wiring, and the engine and drivetrain, etc. You would be transferring 100% ownership over to me; everything that makes up that car is now mine. This is not the case with human beings, because you will never own 100% of what makes me, well.....me. A slave can still object to the will of the master, the car can't. Since the slave retains the ability and the RIGHT to object, the master will never have the "exclusive right" to control. Can the slave still be held responsible for his acts? Would the slave be relieved of all things moral? Would the master be held responsible for the acts of the slave? No? Then the master does not have the "exclusive right", and this is why ownership of yourself cannot be transferred. Let's go back to your example of the car. If you loaned your car to a friend and your friend killed someone with it, then your friend would be at fault. If you loaned your slave to a friend, and your slave killed someone, who would be at fault? Of course the slave would. This is why the example of the car is not right. The slave can never be relieved of the consequences of his acts, good or bad, they are HIS acts, HE OWNS them. They cannot be transferred to anyone else. If I were to sell myself into slavery, I would make sure the contract explicitly stated that I am now relieved of all things moral, and only my master would pay the price for my acts. Then I would just turn and kill my so-called master. Now who's the sucker?
  • Chris Dates's picture
    Chris Dates 4 years 20 weeks ago
    To Govern and Enslave
    Page Jim Davies
    BrianDrake, Your example of the owning a vehicle is inadequate in this context. If you own a vehicle, YOU do, indeed, have the EXCLUSIVE RIGHT to control it. Meaning that you have the FINAL say in the matters that involve your vehicle. This is not the case involving the slave, because the slave has still retained the exclusive right to control his body; he is still the supreme authority of his domain; his body. You even admit to as much. When you use the phrase "exclusive right", we can clearly see that it is, in fact, impossible to sell yourself into slavery, because the new owner of you will never have the "exclusive right to contol" you. That's why "self-ownership" is different than the ownership of other objects. "Self" is more than just the human body. Your example of the vehicle is correct when giving examples of "the exclusive right to control", but when it's placed in the context of an actual human, you are begging the question.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 20 weeks ago
    To Govern and Enslave
    Page Jim Davies
    Hopefully what you have written here will help to clear up, for some, at least, the confusion between "rights" and "abilities". Thank you, Brian Drake. "I had the right to remain silent... but I didn't have the ability." ~ Ron White
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 4 years 20 weeks ago Web link Michael Dunn
    I'm not anti-government, I'm just PRO-SELF-GOVERNMENT. "Every man...possesses the right of self-government." ~ Thomas Jefferson: Opinion on Residence Bill, 1790. ME 3:60
  • BrianDrake's picture
    BrianDrake 4 years 20 weeks ago
    To Govern and Enslave
    Page Jim Davies
    Jim, It seems that you are defining ownership as the ability to control, when the more common definition used among libertarians is that ownership is the exclusive RIGHT to control. I may own my car (disregard the state for this example), and thus have a right (i.e., it would be unjust to interfere with me) to get inside it and directly control it to drive where I want. If I lend my car to a friend for a long-distance trip, I still own the car, but since it is now outside my direct control, I don't have the ability to control it. If I change my mind, I can call my friend and request the car returned (since, as the owner, I have the right to control the car; i.e., I have the final authority over its use), but until I am physically behind the wheel again, I do not have the ability to control the car. With a simple example like this, it seems clear to me that "ability to control" is an inferior definition of ownership and that "exclusive right to control" is more accurate and useful. So, barring literal mind-control like "The Manchurian Candidate", everyone realizes that the body still responds to the direct control of the slave's mind. No master or concentration camp guard ever claimed the "ability to control" the slave/prisoner's body. Instead, the essence of slavery is that the master, by claiming ownership of the slave, claims the exclusive RIGHT to control the slave (i.e., that he may not be justly prevented from enforcing his authority over that person). Self-ownership is not a declaration/recognition of function ("only I can wiggle my toes"), it is a declaration/recognition of jurisdiction ("I alone am the final authority on the use of my body".) Since no slave master ever (to my knowledge) possessed the ability to directly control the slave's body in contradiction to the slave's mind, if ownership is "the ability control", then there has never been such a thing as slavery. If a "slave" was presented with the choice "obey the master or be whipped", it was still the "slave" that chose to move his body to obey. But instead, if you accept that ownership is the exclusive right to control, then slavery is meaningful. Recognizing self-ownership means you recognize that a person may have final authority over their body and that any interference with that authority would be unjust. Recognizing slavery would be to consider unjust any interference (which includes disobedience) with the master's orders regarding the slave's body. In this light, I see it as being inaccurate to talk about "degrees of slavery" (and inversely, "degrees of liberty"). If we're talking about the "ability" to control, then the degree of slavery is basically always 0%, since the "slave's" mind still has 100% control over their body. But if we're talking about the exclusive right to control, then you cannot be partially enslaved and partially self-owning. Someone has the final authority (i.e., interference with this authority would be unjust). If it is you, then you have liberty (self-ownership). If it is not you, then you are a slave. Liberty/slavery clearly seem to me to be binary and mutually exclusive (antithetical - Slavery = not liberty. Liberty = not slavery). The degree of leniency of the master does not diminish that the final authority is still his, not yours. You don't have "2/7 liberty" if the master gives you the weekends off. He may be affording you some "freedom", or granting you "liberties", but as long as the final authority over you is the master, you have ZERO liberty. Likewise, the degree of leniency of a state does not diminish the state's claim of final authority over all those within its declared jurisdiction; i.e., that the state owns them. When boiled down to the essence of the matter, I think it is absolutely accurate to recognize statism as slavery. In fact, since slave masters were themselves subjects ("citizens") of states, they themselves were slaves. The "private" ownership of slaves under statism is thus exposed as a false concept, since the claimed final authority within a state's territory is the state. If I have final authority over you, and you buy a slave, I ultimately have final authority over him too and it cannot be said that you truly own him, since you are already owned yourself. "Slavery" was simply the allowance, by the state, for some state-owned-slaves to have more direct authority over other state-owned-slaves. Can you sell yourself into slavery? If you are talking about transferring the "right to control", then I think this is clearly possible. If you are talking about transferring the "ability to control", it does not seem that technology is at that point...yet.
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 4 years 20 weeks ago Web link Michael Dunn
    Probably already does.
  • Sharon Secor's picture
    Sharon Secor 4 years 20 weeks ago Web link Michael Dunn
    Wow... it is with amazement that I watch the evolution of the definition of terrorist until it encompasses me.