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  • tzo's picture
    tzo 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    I do, in fact, mean that right and ability are the same thing for the isolated human. Rights become a subset of abilities when other human beings are affected by actions. Also: Tigers are not moral agents, which I didn't think necessary to mention. If A and B both have the exact same set of rights, defined as the freedom to perform whatever act their abilities allow, and this is in fact how all men start out life, then positing that All Men Are Created Unequal (in this regard) would not follow. Hence, I chose to make the claim that All Men Are Created Equal (with regard to rights).
  • John T. Kennedy's picture
    John T. Kennedy 3 years 5 weeks ago Page John deLaubenfels
    Jefferson's formulation is excellent except for one fatal flaw. Just powers are derived from consent, but "consent of the governed" is a contradictions in terms. If you and I agree to cooperate to protect each other's natural rights that agreement can produce just powers by consent. but the relationship is a private contract, not a government. Where there is consent there is no need for government, contract suffices. Where there is govenment you can be certain that consent of all relevant parties has not been obtained. When President, Jefferson did not have the consent of all Americans to wield power on their behalf. McDonalds has a complex operating structure in principle based entirely on consent. Just powers are derived form this consent. A manager has the just power to hire or fire based on his agreement with the company. Shareholders have the just power to hire or fire upper management, or to buy and sell shares of the company according to the rules which have been produced by consent. Is McDonalds a government though? No. Let's say instead of producing food McDonalds produced protection of natural rights. It could still derive just powers form consent, but it still wouldn't be a government. It would just be a private company baset on contract, the way it is now. Government by it's nature always asserts a monoply on force, by force. Obviously there is no need to enforce a monopoly where consent exists.
  • John T. Kennedy's picture
    John T. Kennedy 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    tzo, I see what you're trying to do here of course, but this formulation needs a lot of work. For instance, there is nothing in your argument which explains why the moral result would be different if Alpha was a man and Beta was a tiger. The All Men Are Created Equal axiom is really pulled out of a hat here with no good reason given why it should be adopted, as opposed to, for instance, an axiom that All Men Are Created Unequal. I find problems with your argument at almost every point. For example: "I will begin by proposing the existence of Human Alpha, the sole inhabitant of the planet. Then Axiom A is, as they say, axiomatic: Alpha has the ability to do absolutely anything he is able to do. Starting with this axiom,I will begin by proposing the existence of Human Alpha, the sole inhabitant of the planet. Then Axiom A is, as they say, axiomatic: Alpha has the ability to do absolutely anything he is able to do. Starting with this axiom, I propose to define the concept of a “right” as being a derivative of this axiomatic human “ability.” So the derivative Theorem A reads: Alpha has the right to do whatever he is able to do." In this step it is unclear what it means for "right" to be be a derivative of "ability". To say one has the ability to do what one is able to do is a tautology and thus necessarily true. But logically there is no reason to accept Theorem A as true unless "right" and "ability" are the same thing. Otherwise Theorem A does not follow. And clearly you don't mean right and ability are the same thing.
  • John T. Kennedy's picture
    John T. Kennedy 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    A man cannot be alienated from his rights even by his own individual authority - they are indivisible from his nature, which means they are indivisible from him. Where he goes, they go, and vice versa.
  • John T. Kennedy's picture
    John T. Kennedy 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    So you are asserting judgement in an after-life? I understand why people find that comforting. We are so offended by crimes that it seems intolerable that the scales of justice should not always be balanced in the end. I think this yearning for justice explains why people assert any number of inescapable mechanisms for justice: judgement and an after-life, karma, or more secular versions such as the one debated in this thread. But our yearning doesn't make it so.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 3 years 5 weeks ago Page John deLaubenfels
    G'day John T. Kennedy, You asked, "I'd like to hear how any government can act as a government at all without violating basic rights." The answer is, by being restricted, by its author(s)/members to its sole lawful function, which is that of protecting the natural, and therefore un- or in-alien-able[1], rights of its members, and nothing more. The only lawful author-ity that a de jure government can have is that which is delegated to it by its authors, and its authors cannot delegate author-ity to it, which said authors do not lawfully possess, individually, in the first place. This is the Foundational Stone that is missing, as far as I know, from all the man-made governments on Earth. Thomas Jefferson, among others, understood this principle, I believe, since he wrote, "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that [is to say] they are endowed by their Creator [or by nature] with certain unalienable Rights... — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed". Hope that answered your question. ________________________________________________________________________________ [1] "...innate, inalienable human rights cannot be lost due to circumstance" ~ tzo Nor can a man be alienated from them by positive law, i.e. by human laws. Why are our natural rights sometimes referred to as our "inalienable rights", or "unalienable rights"? "You have rights antecedent to all earthly governments’ rights that cannot be repealed or restrained by human laws..." ~ John Adams Because a man cannot be "alienated" from his natural rights "by human laws", but rather only by his own individual authority, either by express or tacit consent or by forfeiture (a form of implied consent).
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    "...innate, inalienable human rights cannot be lost due to circumstance" Nor can a man be alienated from them by positive law, i.e. by human laws. Why are our natural rights sometimes referred to as our "inalienable rights", or "unalienable rights"? "You have rights antecedent to all earthly governments’ rights that cannot be repealed or restrained by human laws..." ~ John Adams Because a man cannot be "alienated" from his natural rights "by human laws", but rather only by his own individual authority, either by express or tacit consent or by forfeiture (a form of implied consent).
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    G'day Geoffrey Transom, I also find it very telling when someone jumps on the God-thing, while, most times missing, entirely, the more important things, which, in this case, (and in my opinion), was the last paragraph. "Question for you nay-sayers; bees and ants and lions and wolves, etcetera, etcetera, etcetera, each have their own peculiar "natural law" for survival of the individual, as well as the group, so how is it that you "believe" that man is somehow mysteriously exempt from the "natural law of the human world", as Frank van Dun, Ph.D. (Doctor of Philosophy), Dr.Jur. (Doctor of Jurisprudence) - Senior lecturer Philosophy of Law, (someone obviously far less intelligent, or thoughtful, than yourselves), for clarification, called it?" [Emphasis added]
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    G'day tzo, You posted this September 26? How did I miss it? Anyway, BRAVO!! Absolutely love your finale!! And to those who attempt to destroy the truth, they are on a mission impossible and cannot succeed no matter how many of them get together to sign the death certificate. "The natural law always buries its undertakers." ~ Étienne Gilson You wrote: "By initiating violence, the aggressor is subject to violent retribution." Even more, if I may, my friend, "By initiating violence, the aggressor subjects HIMSELF to violent retribution." (Fraud is merely another form of theft.) Thank you, once again, for expounding on an extremely important concept without the use of ten-cent words and phrases or psycho-babble. "If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough." ~ Albert Einstein
  • Guest's picture
    txabier7 (not verified) 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    Hi john: I do not agree with you that some criminals escape the consequences of their crimes. For me it is clear that we are in this life by the way, but that does not end here, and therefore we are to ascend and to descend, which is what we do when we cause harm to our fellow men. That is the inescapable consequence for every human being hurtful, knowing that he is doing.
  • John T. Kennedy's picture
    John T. Kennedy 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    "Anything man does is part of nature. Including things contrary to his nature" How can part of nature be contrary to nature?
  • John T. Kennedy's picture
    John T. Kennedy 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    Now you write: "Consequences are not inescapable. but they are transferable from perpetrator to victim and govt action is one major organized method--capable of multiplying the effects and spreading the consequences to large numbers of people--witness the bank bailouts transferred to the tax payers." And here is your original statement which I have been disputing all along: "A man who swallows poison even if he has complete confidence it is vitamins *will become ill*. A man who aggresses against others will be distrusted, avoided, and probably made to repay his victims if some govt forces do not interfere. It may not be immediate or readily apparent but it is inescapable." Do you concede that your original statement said consequences to an individual aggressor were inescapable, like the consequences of eating poison? Do you concede that your original statement was incorrect?
  • AtlasAikido's picture
    AtlasAikido 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    "Man is part of nature. He is subject to natural law. Anything man does is part of nature. Including things contrary to his nature [well being]." Animals commit actions that may lead to their death but are not known to deliberately commit suicide. Man is capable of doing just that. His volition that is part of his nature makes it possible for him to commit suicide. (Man is distinguished from animals by his faculty of reason and volition).
  • John T. Kennedy's picture
    John T. Kennedy 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    "Of course, neither I nor Spooner have any obligation to something that neither of us signed. But I did sign the Covenant voluntarily. Since you did not sign the Covenant I do not expect you to be bound by it." How are you bound by this supposed Covenant? Can you cite one thing it morally constrains you from doing that you were not already morally constrained from doing before signing? You've signed the document and I have not. You say you are bound by it and I am not. Can you cite any difference in our moral obligations or responsibilities to anyone based on the fact that you've signed and I have not?
  • AtlasAikido's picture
    AtlasAikido 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    If I have not made the case for inescapable consequences it is because there is book that addresses this issue in a much more complete manner. I prefer to not retype the book here. "The free market is a product of the working of natural laws in the area of human relationships, specifically economic relationships". Consequences are not inescapable. but they are transferable from perpetrator to victim and govt action is one major organized method--capable of multiplying the effects and spreading the consequences to large numbers of people--witness the bank bailouts transferred to the tax payers.
  • John T. Kennedy's picture
    John T. Kennedy 3 years 5 weeks ago
    Sorry, Wendy and Lew
    Page John deLaubenfels
    "Let's dispose of the notion, popular with Stephan Kinsella and his hangers-on, that goes like this: Copies of an electronic work are almost effortless to make; therefore they're worth nothing, and nobody need feel bad for taking one and flipping off the original author." Interestingly, has claimed protection of his IP on his web site. http://web.archive.org/web/20061121090001/http://www.no-treason.com/arch... http://web.archive.org/web/20061121052303/http://www.no-treason.com/arch... Even more interesting, as a lawyer it appears he has threatened legal violence on behalf of Lew Rockwell to secure Lew's IP rights. http://web.archive.org/web/20061121073431/http://www.no-treason.com/arch... Oh and I just took a look at the web site for the Center for the Study of Innovative Freedom, of which Kinsella is the director. http://c4sif.org/about/ The Center actively opposes IP yet oddly reserves some IP rights under it's Creative Commons license.
  • AtlasAikido's picture
    AtlasAikido 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    You are right it is not appeal to authority. It is an appeal to ignorance. You deliberately refuse to read the book by your own admission but pretend to know what it says.
  • AtlasAikido's picture
    AtlasAikido 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    Re: "Spooner is dead." and I'm [John] aware of that, but you cited him anyway. You pretended you knew what Spooner would think about the Covenant. You never explained why he would think that. Whereas I made reference to what Spooner actually wrote. Re: "What specific things did he write that are contrary to the Covenant?" Of course, neither I nor Spooner have any obligation to something that neither of us signed. But I did sign the Covenant voluntarily. Since you did not sign the Covenant I do not expect you to be bound by it. Not only did he not sign the Constituion but would not because he considered it the product of "the senseless work of ignorant or thoughtless men". That has nothing to do with the Covenant. As for me I do not presume to know whether he would have approved the Covenant or not. Re: Spooner would *never* say that Natural Law, the entire subject of Smith's supposed agreement, was not binding upon him because he had not signed it. How can you presume to say somebody would not sign something? How can you presume to know the subject of someones mind without citing something specific that they have written on that subject?
  • John T. Kennedy's picture
    John T. Kennedy 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    "If the consequences may not be immediately visible on the aggressor they certainly are on the victims." But of course that's nothing like the consequences to the individual of eating poison, is it? Here was your original statement I disputed: "A man who swallows poison even if he has complete confidence it is vitamins *will become ill*. A man who aggresses against others will be distrusted, avoided, and probably made to repay his victims if some govt forces do not interfere. It may not be immediate or readily apparent but it is inescapable." You were clearly speaking of inescapable consequences to the aggressor. That is precisely what I have contested all along. You can't defend your original assertion by writing as if I contested something else.
  • John T. Kennedy's picture
    John T. Kennedy 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    "Regarding Mao and Stalin etc as being exempt from natural laws." No, no, no, that's not my claim. What I've disputed is your assertion of inescapable consequences for the individual. Casino's reap their profits based on the Law of Large Numbers which says that the average of the results obtained from a large number of bets should be close to the expected value. Of course the bets are designed so that the expected value favors the house. You can bank on this law, and Casino's do, but it does not not impose inescapable consequences on the individual. Some individuals come out ahead after betting against the house. Some come out ahead after placing many bets. Likewise some moral criminals escape consequences of their crimes in a way they could not escape the consequences for eating poison (your simile). "Man is part of nature. He is subject to natural law. Anything man does is part of nature. Including things contrary to his nature." This becomes an exercise in confusing different meanings of nature and natural law. If man's nature is defined as what he can do then obviously nothing he does is contrary to his nature. Physics is natural law and I doubt that anything we observe contradicts physics, so physics is inescapable. But this is not what is meant by Natural Law when speaking of morality.
  • John T. Kennedy's picture
    John T. Kennedy 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    "If an evil person starts a forest fire, the sensible thing for a man of reason is to recognize the law of nature and protect himself from the consequences of that action (i.e. protect himself from the fire). " Evil people who start forest fires tend to do that too. "The world is on fire." Well that doesn't sound good for anybody, including the man of reason.
  • John T. Kennedy's picture
    John T. Kennedy 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    "What negative moral responsibilities does John refer to?" Concisely, the responsibility to refrain from aggression: the NAP. It's not subject to agreement - everyone is morally constrained by the NAP regardless of agreement. "Spooner is dead." I'm aware of that, but you cited him anyway. "What specific things did he write that are contrary to the Covenant?" Spooner wrote: "“Lawmakers, as they call themselves, can add nothing to it, nor take anything from it. Therefore all their laws, as they call them, — that is, all the laws of their own making, — have no color of authority or obligation. It is a falsehood to call them laws; for there is nothing in them that either creates men’s duties or rights, or enlightens them as to their duties or rights. There is consequently nothing binding or obligatory about them. And nobody is bound to take the least notice of them, unless it be to trample them under foot, as usurpations. If they command men to do justice, they add nothing to men’s obligation to do it, or to any man’s right to enforce it. They are therefore mere idle wind, such as would be commands to consider the day as day, and the night as night. If they command or license any man to do injustice, they are criminal on their face. If they command any man to do anything which justice does not require him to do, they are simple, naked usurpations and tyrannies. If they forbid any man to do anything, which justice could permit him to do, they are criminal invasions of his natural and rightful liberty. In whatever light, therefore, they are viewed, they are utterly destitute of everything like authority or obligation. They are all necessarily either the impudent, fraudulent, and criminal usurpations of tyrants, robbers, and murderers, or the senseless work of ignorant or thoughtless men, who do not know, or certainly do not realize, what they are doing. “ From: http://lysanderspooner.org/node/62 This was addressing legislation but it applies well to this supposed covenant. After all, legislation is supposed to be binding as a consequence of agreement. Spooner would say that a supposed agreement to do what you are already morally bound to do as "mere idle wind" and "the senseless work of ignorant or thoughtless men, who do not know, or certainly do not realize, what they are doing". "Spooner objected to the Constitution because he did not sign it. His objection was anything he did not sign he had no obligation to." That wasn't his only objection, not by a country mile! You can find a more comprehensive list of his objection here: http://jim.com/treason.htm Spooner would *never* say that Natural Law, the entire subject of Smith's supposed agreement, was not binding upon him because he had not signed it. "The Covenant is something *I* signed if I agree with it and overcomes that. " There are different senses of the word "agree". You and I may agree that the Earth revolves around the Sun. Upon this matter then we may be said to be in agreement. We may even sign declarations that we recognize that the Earth revolves around the Sun. But none of this would constitute an agreement in the sense of a covenant or a contract, none of it would impose the slightest obligation upon either of us. A proper contract or covenant produces new obligations that have been agreed upon. So when you style the NAP as a covenant it strongly implies that principles therein are the product of agreement. But they are not the product of agreement, so this is a terrible idea.
  • AtlasAikido's picture
    AtlasAikido 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    If an evil person starts a forest fire, the sensible thing for a man of reason is to recognize the law of nature and protect himself from the consequences of that action (i.e. protect himself from the fire). The world is on fire.
  • AtlasAikido's picture
    AtlasAikido 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    Natural law has consequences. It will either be paid by the perpetrator or his victims. Regarding Mao and Stalin etc as being exempt from natural laws. Not so. Even if Stalin personally escaped some of the consequences they were never the less transferred to others. His victims were not necessarily innocent. Man is part of nature. He is subject to natural law. Anything man does is part of nature. Including things contrary to his nature. An animal cannot do anything against his own nature without suffering the consequences which is usually pain or death.. A man who does something against his nature will suffer consequences. ( a rabid dog can only infect those who he comes into contact with) Man being a higher level animal the consequences of what he does may affect other animals. (Man can infect inflict consequences on people who do not even know of his existence.) Illustration of this is. Man is capable of creating and exploding small bomb, medium sized bomb and atomic bomb. Consequences of each, effect people within the radius of the bomb explosion. Same is true with Govt. As a rabid dog will effect many victims before his death so it is with an evil human being, effect more than just himself. The person who does not kill a rabid dog allows evil by inaction to multiply. Man is capable of more evil than one man can pay the price. The consequences of that evil are inescapable in that they are propagated and spread out to those who sanction victim hood... People who allow mad dogs or tyrants to exist become victims themselves of their own refusal to deal with reality in a sensible and rational manner. If you allow a tyrant to exist then by natural law you will suffer the consequences of such. Some of us are protecting ourselves as best as we can.
  • AtlasAikido's picture
    AtlasAikido 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    John: You [AtlasAikido] said the consequences of aggression were inescapable, like the consequences of eating poison. This is the assertion I've contested, because it's pretty obviously not true. "I [AtlasAikido] never said there was a perfect system nor a utopia..." If the consequences may not be immediately visible on the aggressor they certainly are on the victims. Again: Not envisioning a "Utopia" in which no man tries to victimize another. As long as men are human, they will be free to choose to act in an irrational and immoral manner against their fellows and there will always be some who act as brutes, inflicting their will on others by force. What the Tannehill's and I am proposing is a system for dealing with such which is far superior to the past and present govermental ones--*a system which makes the violation of human liberty far more difficult and less rewarding for all who want to live as brutes and downright impossible for those who want to be politicians!!* Again: Nor am I proposing a "Perfect" society (what ever that is).. Men are fallible so mistakes will always be made and there will never be a society of total equity. Under the present and past governmental systems however, blunders and aggressive intrusions into the lives of peaceful individuals tend to feed on themselves and to grow automatically so that what starts off as a small injustice (small tax, regulation, bureau etc ) inevitably becomes *a Colossus with Monsters* in charge.
  • John T. Kennedy's picture
    John T. Kennedy 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    "Put the ball back in his court. *Ask him--as an individual--what he would do*. " without roping me into his solution as an involuntary slave." 99% will respond that they are perfectly comfortable doing what you characterize as roping you into their solution as an involuntary slave. They'll say they're not making you an involuntary slave because you're free to leave. "Natural law never went away those who ignore it will (are) continuing to experience the consequence as witnessed the slow motion collapse of all the western financial systems." Yes, but unfortunately those who do *not* ignore it *also* continue to experience the very same consequences. Recognizing Natural Law and acting in accordance with it does not profit the individual in this respect. Since it does not profit the individual in this respect the consequences you cite offer negligible incentive for those who are biased against Natural Law to overcome their bias.
  • AtlasAikido's picture
    AtlasAikido 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    "Put the ball back in his court. *Ask him--as an individual--what he would do*. " without roping me into his solution as an involuntary slave. John asked the question of Suverans2. "I'm very comfortable with natural law, as were the American Founders but how do you propose to bring it back in fashion?" Natural law never went away those who ignore it will (are) continuing to experience the consequence as witnessed the slow motion collapse of all the western financial systems.
  • AtlasAikido's picture
    AtlasAikido 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    What negative moral responsibilities does John refer to? Spooner is dead. What specific things did he write that are contrary to the Covenant? I can't speak for Spooner only quote what he has written. Spooner objected to the Constitution because he did not sign it. His objection was anything he did not sign he had no obligation to. The Covenant is something *I* signed if I agree with it and overcomes that. When I signed it no one viewed it the way John portrays nor anyone I know. Spooner himself objected to something he not sign. And signatories do not necessarily expect others to be bound by something they did not sign.
  • John T. Kennedy's picture
    John T. Kennedy 3 years 5 weeks ago Page Per Bylund
    "Whether rights are violated or not does not matter in our view of what must be." I am baffled by this statement that stands completely unsupported in this article. Any action which doesn't violate rights is morally permissible. Any action which violates rights is not morally permissible. That certainly matters in my view of what ought to be. I've read Nozick's argument for a voluntary government and find that it simply fails and all such arguments fail in principle.
  • John T. Kennedy's picture
    John T. Kennedy 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    "In addition: In a revolution of the individual, “we” questions should not be answered. " I hear you. "Put the ball back in their court. *Ask them what they would do*. " Odd, that sounds like a prescription for what *we* should do. "Human interaction is purely voluntary." It ought to be. If you're really saying it already is then I guess you think we already have a voluntary society. "I know there is one crucial step that has to be taken before humans are physically free, and that step is to be mentally free. If it will be their decision in a voluntary society, it must be their decision now." Yet sadly 99%+ have chosen otherwise. So now what?
  • John T. Kennedy's picture
    John T. Kennedy 3 years 5 weeks ago Page John deLaubenfels
    "It may well be the case (as time goes by I'm more and more convinced it IS the case) that any government will, over time, grow and encroach on basic rights, until it no more secures rights than a thief in an alley does. It is perfectly reasonable to question the practicality of trying to bring to pass a minarchist's dream of the best possible society." I'd like to hear how any government can act as a government at all without violating basic rights. I can certainly see how someone could fear that anarchy will not produce a stable society, but I cannot see how that fear could ever justify collaboration in the violation of rights - and such collaboration is inherent in government. You can't have minarchy without holding a gun to the heads of innocent people and your misgivings about anachy cannot justify that.
  • tzo's picture
    tzo 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    My concept of universality does not come from Stefan's UPB, but rather from along these lines: http://strike-the-root.com/all-men-are-created-equal
  • John T. Kennedy's picture
    John T. Kennedy 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    I should also clarify: Religion is a subset of superstition. Religion is superstition but I wouldn't say all superstition qualifies as religion.
  • John T. Kennedy's picture
    John T. Kennedy 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    Okay, I've just read Smith's proposed covenant and I find that it is not a proper covenant at all. It explicitly styles itself as an agreement yet it outlines only negative moral responsibilities which all men share regardless of any agreement. Spooner would reject this document out of hand. He would observe it is absurd to agree to act justly since such supposed agreement neither adds anything to nor subtracts anything from an individual's moral obligations. To declare the the moral principles on recognizes is of course fine, but to frame this as an agreement is a terrible idea. To even craft such a supposed agreement is highly misleading since it quite naturally creates the false impression that only signatories are morally bound by these negative moral responsibilities when in fact all men are so bound to any valid moral obligation identified in the document whether they sign or not.
  • AtlasAikido's picture
    AtlasAikido 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    Well put and agreed Suverans2, In addition: In a revolution of the individual, “we” questions should not be answered. Put the ball back in their court. *Ask them what they would do*. Human interaction is purely voluntary. *It is important to let the ones asking the questions find their own solutions, or what they think might be solutions*. I know there is one crucial step that has to be taken before humans are physically free, and that step is to be mentally free. If it will be their decision in a voluntary society, it must be their decision now.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    Thank you, John T. Kennedy, that makes perfect sense.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    Thank you, John T. Kennedy, that makes perfect sense.
  • AtlasAikido's picture
    AtlasAikido 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    Hi suverans2, This whole religion thing reminds me of those who resolved to AVOID the water until he had learned to swim. If men are to wait for liberty till they become wise and good in slavery they may indeed wait for ever. I live with individuals in an UNfree world. Most of them like me were born into slavery and most will die slaves and we have many who still think as slaves here on this thread. There are some who I can have relationships with and do, in a division of labor society now remnant. Can I have a relationship with someone whilst they sort there mind out? Yes I can. This Objectivist thing that one cannot have an inter-relationship with those--religious etc--until they have their mind so-called straightened out from first causes and principles is false. I care about how I act and how you act. That's it. I know how I am going to act and announce that via the Covenant and so forth. I do not know how you are going to act.The Covenant solves this issue and others (within human reason). But it brings things into first contact, direct alternatives etc... I have found those who embrace religion--or no religion--who will sign it. And those who have embraced Govt religion (your words perhaps) or Govt superstition (my words), and those who will not embrace it. One person's love of the "We" or Govt did not manifest until much later. But it is the reason he would not sign it. He was in this case a racist but did not want to show it. Covenant is a great way to work things out...see things...identify consequences. Superstition encompasses religion. And it is practiced by many atheists and Objectivists! The Most Dangerous Superstition [is Govt] Larken Rose makes this connection. You could think of it as a religion and speak write of it that way but I have met religious people and I am sure you have too who are much like tanhadron. I think *tanhadron, exhibits/evidenced tolerance of others, composure, benevolence and lots of practical sense that too many so called non-religious folk do not manifest. I think it is because he has NOT bought into the Government Superstition although he may believe in a religion/higher power and call it something other than nature. But the Covenant would be a good place to start to make it explicit with him and me. Best regards my Dear Friend and good day to you!
  • John T. Kennedy's picture
    John T. Kennedy 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    @Suverans2 "Not sure I understand the difference between Superstition and Religion..." The difference is the degree of success in marketing.
  • John T. Kennedy's picture
    John T. Kennedy 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    I didn't switch any discussion here to religion, I responded to comments about religion. You can look it up. However, response to an article about Natural Law I see nothing wrong with exploring the supposed foundations of such law. Surely you can't think that when Natural Law is asserted we are bound to simply accept it without argument? One supposed source of Natural Law is God, and in exploring that possibility I see nothing wrong with disputing the existence of God. But I'm glad to see that thread police are keeping an eye on things.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 3 years 5 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    I didn't "like" this, John T. Kennedy, because I think you are right. A vast majority of individuals have become so dependent on government that they no longer have any confidence in their own power to solve problems. And, I believe history also proves out what you wrote.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    G'Day AtlasAikido, Not sure I understand the difference between Superstition and Religion, especially after reading this, "Quick definition" from WordNet (superstition) ▸ noun: an irrational belief arising from ignorance or fear". Sounds like a good definition of Religion, as well. And, I'm sure everyone here will understand why I particularly like this definition of Superstition from the American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language; "A belief, practice, or rite irrationally maintained by ignorance of the laws of nature or by faith in magic or chance."
  • John T. Kennedy's picture
    John T. Kennedy 3 years 5 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    There are many people who want different government, far less than 1% desire no government. As the economy breaks down people will call for more government.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    I wasn't accusing you of not being true to yourself, John T. Kennedy, merely trying to condense what AtlasAikido had just posted. Sorry for the confusion. I try to speak only for myself, because I can't change the world, I can only change my world. And, I truly believe, after much study, that, as self-owners, we have the natural right to choose our jurisdiction, when we are willing to assume responsibility for our own survival, (though we may not be consciously aware that we are choosing). Albeit ignorantly, virtually all of us choose to be members of one man-made jurisdiction, or another. I say "choose", because experience has shown that even when it is made known to men that they (individually) have a choice, that each of us has the innate authority to withdraw from membership in a corporate body, instead of choosing to do so, we make excuses why we can't. This not to say that it will be easy explaining that we have chosen to be under the natural law (of man), instead of the arbitrary and capricious laws of man-made religions and governments.
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 3 years 5 weeks ago Page Paul Bonneau
    That is normally so. But, these are not normal times. An awful lot of people are already losing their faith in government, and that trend will continue as government is seen as more incompetent and unreasonable, and as it ruins the economy. But you are making my point, really. That's why I say "stop evangelizing freedom". We don't have to convert people into freedom lovers. We just need to get them to tolerate freedom lovers, a much smaller job. Most people are naturally tolerant. It takes a lot of indoctrination to make them act otherwise (e.g. in the voting booth), and that indoctrination is pretty fragile these days.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    Meaning no disrespect, John T. Kennedy; being "comfortable with natural law", and actively choosing it as our own, as I am sure you are aware, are two entirely different animals.
  • John T. Kennedy's picture
    John T. Kennedy 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    "I never said there was a perfect system nor a utopia..." You said the consequences of aggression were inescapable, like the consequences of eating poison. This is the assertion I've contested, because it's pretty obviously not true. "I never said there was a perfect system..." Inescapable moral consequences would comprise a perfect system in a very real sense. "It is sad that you have come this far and show all the hall marks evidenced here of appeal to authority and social metaphysics." Where have I appealed to authority?
  • AtlasAikido's picture
    AtlasAikido 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    I care not what a person's religion is or faith. Only the interpersonal relationship I and that person have as it relates to the four precepts and specifically the fifth as it relates to religion in the Covenant Of Unanimous Consent . Equality of Liberty FIFTH, that we shall maintain these Principles without Respect to any person's Race, Nationality, Gender, sexual Preference, Age, or System of Beliefs, and hold that any Entity or Association, however constituted, acting to contravene them by initiation of Force -- or Threat of same -- shall have forfeited its Right to exist; There are Atheists who still believe in govt and religionists who do not. It makes more sense to use the statement Govt Superstition than Govt Religion.
  • AtlasAikido's picture
    AtlasAikido 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    Govt introduces chaos where there is none. This simple point seems to allude you. Perhaps your time would be better served reading what you clearly are out of touch with. And this includes your inability to read what is in front of you: I never said there was a perfect system nor a utopia but I do point to one that is far superior than what we have--a free market system and I supply reasons. You started off with Stalin, and Mao and now you're onto Churchill and Eisenhower. Again Govt introduces chaos where there is none! Frankly you could have read the parts that you are clearly out of touch with the first time I brought it up. John, I am not Morpheus and you are clearly not Neo. Apparently you have a problem opening a book let alone a door to self-knowledge. I am so impressed that you know Murphy --too bad that's as far as it goes because I see no similarity other than you are friends. It is sad that you have come this far and show all the hall marks evidenced here of appeal to authority and social metaphysics.
  • John T. Kennedy's picture
    John T. Kennedy 3 years 5 weeks ago Page tzo
    I am true my myself. I've discovered that it doesn't change the world. I do not aggress against other individuals yet I observe that aggression remains almost universally popular, even among people who know me well. So?