Heinlein Libertarian on March 21, 2010, 05:32:33 am

What if your mother is actually an alien? Nothing personal, but this is the sort of silly special pleading fantasy I described above. This has never happened in the history of the real world. No state has ever been successful at keeping "unhealthy ideas from outside their borders" from coming in, no matter what amount of force was used. Show me it ever happening in real life. While you are at it, explain the benefit to the parasitic aggressor in the wholesale killing of productive "hosts" and the destruction of the things those people create.


And now, you go after my mother. A formidable debating tactic. Truly, I don't know what I was thinking, using logic and critical thinking to prove my point.

You are, however, right about a portion of your statement: No dictatorial state has ever been successful at keeping "unhealthy ideas" entirely out of their country. Nor did I ever claim that this was the case. Please clean up the remains of your straw man up before you leave. By the way, this has not stopped them from invading their neighbors who spread bad ideas anyway, see Tibet.

Your second argument, that dictatorial states have more to lose from war against producers than they have to gain is also true, but totally irrelevant. Hitler had more to lose from WWII than he had to gain. Making war on the productive British and Americans was a dumb move, but he did it anyway. Hirohito shouldn't have attacked us, but he did. I could go on citing historical examples for days, but the fact is that rationality generally doesn't enter in to the equation when you are dealing with a megalomaniacal dictator.

Finally, none of these arguments (with the exception of those addressing my parentage,) even touches on the point I was trying to make: How do you fight an Afgan-style insurgency against an enemy willing to drop sarin gas on your towns and cities? How do you fight a nuclear-armed enemy who is willing to use them without nukes of your own to make them think twice?

I'd go into this in-depth, but Jtuxyan already said it best:


An insurgent rebellion only works when the invader is not willing to just kill everyone. It's not the mode de'jour of warfare right now, but for much of human history, it was perfectly acceptable to respond to any rebellion by mass executions until the local population either suppressed the rebels themselves or there was no local population. The Roman empire made a national policy of the "Punitive Response" strategy, where ever the slightest raid or rebellion was met with overwhelming brutality towards those responsible, so that they could police themselves. Today, with modern weapons, it is very easily possible to kill every single living creature inside a nations borders, and never have to occupy them at all.

"We'll just let ourselves be invaded and then drive them off with an insurgency." Relies on the invader playing nice. The post-Stalin USSR in Afghanistan was a brutal occupier, but they were a schoolyard bully compared to the atrocities of history. Hitler, Stalin, the Great Leap Forward.

Put simply, if "We'll just let ourselves be invaded and then drive them off with an insurgency." is your strategy, then your strategy is really "Hope and pray that no one who's genuinely psychotic ever invades us."


The United States does not take and execute hostages in the face of insurgents. We do not bomb whole villages and towns, we drop smart bombs and guided artillery fire. We expend extra lives to make sure we don't kill civilians being used by insurgents as human shields. We are unique in history. Genghis Khan just killed everybody in towns that showed the slightest bit of resistance, and generally in pretty awful ways. A Genghis Khan in the world you are suggesting would render any resistance impossible as the populace you use to hide yourself would simply cease to exist.

Heinlein Libertarian on March 21, 2010, 05:33:35 am

Please show me a US war that wasn't a pretext to justify killing and destruction to benefit special interests, and which actually made Americans safer.


World War II. Neither Hitler nor Hirohito were planning on adopting a "live and let live" philosophy once Europe and China were conquered. They attacked us.

As much as you might like to believe that other people will leave you alone if you are not threatening them, you are wrong. I could point to every mugging in the history of humanity, Saddam Hussein's invasion of Kuwait, Hitler again, Hirohito again, the Kaiser, the British Empire under King George V, etc. There will always be people who will want what you have and who are willing to use force to take it. A lot of them work in government, true. A lot of them run governments. But this does not change the simple fact that they exist, and we need to be prepared for them domestically (by arming ourselves,) and internationally (by creating, arming, equipping and training an army.)

Heinlein Libertarian on March 21, 2010, 08:06:39 am
Well, a bunch of folks without support from their own or any other government seem to be doing a fair job defending themselves and their families against the best-armed military on the planet, over in a little shithole called Iraq.


Iranian intelligence and Revolutionary Guard units have been moving cash, weapons, supplies and trainers in to Iraq since before the invasion.

The same people who have been funding Al Qaeda globally similarly funded their offshoot in Iraq, and helped Afgan guerrillas infiltrate to take part in the insurgency.

Neither of these facts is any sort of secret, and they both point to a much larger truth: Very few insurgencies can survive without outside cash, supplies and safe havens. America won because Britain was distracted by the French. The Taliban had safe havens in NW Pakistan, drug money from opium poppies, and oil cash from Wahabbists in the Middle East. The FARC guerrillas in Colombia can only survive because of the kidnapping/drug revenues they bring in and their ability to cross into Venezuela. The Vietnamese had constant cash and weapon shipments from the Soviets, all sent to safe havens in neighboring countries.

Successful insurgencies require a secure, outside source of funds, a place to which the rebels can retreat, and resupply from outside.

terry_freeman on March 21, 2010, 02:49:38 pm
Don't confuse "approval ratings" with the reality. Yes, it's true that over 50% disagree with what the government is doing - more strongly than you'd know, if you listen only to what governemnt mouthpieces (including the media). But when push comes to shove, most people don't do anything about their beliefs. As fast as home schooling has risen, it's still the case that governments educate over 80% of children. Regardless of the near universal loathing for taxes, probably over 90% of us pay a lot more taxes than we'd like. In short, for all our grumbling, government still rests on a solid bedrock of tacit consent.

That can change. It did change in the former USSR. It can change in the United Socialist States of America, and we're seeing signs of that change today.

I'm not going to get into endless debates with trolls. Get yourself some books by H John Poole, a military officer with a lot more knowledge of warfare than most of us, and read what he has to say about the wars in Vietnam and the Middle East. He loves America, he's a patriot, and he believes the American military should be in the Middle East; but he'll tell you we are losing in spite of having vastly more money to throw at the problem. The short explanation: our military is organized along socialist lines; theirs is organized along AnCap lines. I've always held that socialists make better capitalists than Americans, because socialists don't have to pretend that inherently socialist forms are "really" free markets; we do. We have a government-controlled military, government-controlled schools, government-controlled health care, and we pretend it's all about freedom. Socialists are more honest about the failings of socialism; they have less invested in self-delusion than our politicians do.

Zilabus on March 21, 2010, 03:57:10 pm
Don't confuse "approval ratings" with the reality. Yes, it's true that over 50% disagree with what the government is doing - more strongly than you'd know, if you listen only to what governemnt mouthpieces (including the media). But when push comes to shove, most people don't do anything about their beliefs. As fast as home schooling has risen, it's still the case that governments educate over 80% of children. Regardless of the near universal loathing for taxes, probably over 90% of us pay a lot more taxes than we'd like. In short, for all our grumbling, government still rests on a solid bedrock of tacit consent.

That can change. It did change in the former USSR. It can change in the United Socialist States of America, and we're seeing signs of that change today.


Let's not lie to ourselves. Yes, the goverment is involved with many news and media corporations. No, they don't control them with as tight a leash as being presented. There is no evidence of this. They want to make money, and compelling news makes money. Compelling news doesn't always agree with government ideals. And if they where really controlling and supressing all media and news outlets, they could stand to do a hell of a lot better job. Even if we do assume all media and news is corrupted by the government, where are we supposed to get any information? Are there reliable news outlets that are non-government corrupted? If so, I'd honestly appreciate it if you link me to one.

While discontintment with the government is up, I don't think we can really be comparing ourselves to the situation before the Soviet Union collapsed. We haven't fallen quite so low, and even then, the USSR collapsed into smaller governments, not into a system of idealic libertarian non-government (Which is admittidly a pretty good ideal, if possible). I'm not saying the US isn't uncollapsable. I'm not saying it's immune to padagrim shifts either. I'm just saying it's likely a long way off, if at all. It takes a lot more then 50% disaproval or dislike of taxes to send people rebeling and to topple over a nation.
« Last Edit: March 21, 2010, 10:20:12 pm by Zilabus »
Bring back the funk.

Sean Roach on March 21, 2010, 06:49:42 pm
Who said media is corrupted BY government.  Government, and the major media outlets are both corrupt.

If I don't like you, and I see a man burglarizing your house, but decide not to report it, is it because I'm in it with the thief, or it is because I have it in for you too, and the thief is doing you harm, which I approve of?

If the thief comes by later, and offers me an almost-new Blu-Ray player, and I buy it, is it because I'm in it with the thief, or is it because I value getting the blu-ray player over being true to you, who I don't like in the first place?

If anything, I'd say the media corrupted the government.
« Last Edit: March 21, 2010, 06:57:29 pm by Sean Roach »

Jtuxyan on March 22, 2010, 01:54:44 pm
Quote
I'm not going to get into endless debates with trolls. Get yourself some books by H John Poole, a military officer with a lot more knowledge of warfare than most of us, and read what he has to say about the wars in Vietnam and the Middle East. He loves America, he's a patriot, and he believes the American military should be in the Middle East; but he'll tell you we are losing in spite of having vastly more money to throw at the problem. The short explanation: our military is organized along socialist lines; theirs is organized along AnCap lines. I've always held that socialists make better capitalists than Americans, because socialists don't have to pretend that inherently socialist forms are "really" free markets; we do. We have a government-controlled military, government-controlled schools, government-controlled health care, and we pretend it's all about freedom. Socialists are more honest about the failings of socialism; they have less invested in self-delusion than our politicians do.

Uh...we successfully invaded them. We conquered Iraq and Afghanistan.

We won.

The occupation is proving difficult, yes, but if we really wanted to kill them instead of liberating them, we're in a military position to do so right now. Obviously, the US military is not really run by psychotic genocidal monsters, so that's never going to happen, but it does mean that, ultimately, they're "winning" because we're insisting upon playing nice and taking the moral high ground.

Not every invader is going to do that.


sams on March 22, 2010, 04:11:53 pm
and what if all the service of an ''army'' were provided by a ''security industry'', like private contractors providing security service for the ''free people'', if you consider security has a good to be purchased, you wipe out the problem of how to raise a ''government still army''.
Has I posted in the armed force thread, you can have contractors competing to provide the following services :

- Ground Operation personnel : Think 500 Black Water with trained gun nuts
- SAM umbrella coverage ... to take out enemy aircraft
- Anti-ballistic & anti-missile umbrella ... to take out incoming missile. The IDF have a system called Iron Dome that protect them from Hamas Kassam rockets, which allow to selectively destroy incoming rockets
- Information Catering : like the awesome IDF UAV surveillance apparatus that make it easier to locate Hamas terrorist and prevent ambush
- Heavy Duty Services : Some armed UAV and some heavy duty precision weapons.


Now take in mind that if those services are provided for PROFITS, then any company will invest in the most capable defensive device and asymmetrical warfare capacities ... remember : Fighter, bomber, tanks and nukes are very good offensive weapons, but they are darn expensive ... and can be disabled with relatively cheap counter measures ... respectively : SAM, RPG/Hellfire and anti-ballistic missiles.

Extermination warfare is the only solution ... but the cost of such war may bankrupt the aggressor in case of defeat

terry_freeman on March 22, 2010, 04:52:34 pm
No, we have won nothing more than a temporary occupation. We no more "won" in Iraq and Afghanistan than we "won" in Vietnam. It is not "victory" when you can't leave a base without having twenty men or more, and when some patrols don't return, when tanks and other vehicles are destroyed by IEDs.

I refer you to H John Poole; he would think you mad to describe this uneasy "truce" as having "won" the war - and these opponents have vastly lower resources than any modern AnCap society would.

I forget who it was that proposed smart munitions dropped from a space platform; the idea was that a hunk of iron with sensors and fins would be able to destroy tanks if dropped from a sufficiently great height. Robert A Heinlein suggested a larger-scale version in _The Moon is a Harsh Mistress_: missiles fired from moon-based electromagnetic rails could do some serious damage.

But there's another scenario. One of the main operations of a modern AnCap society would be secure, confidential 100% reserve banking in a reliable, non-inflationary currency. It would not take long before people would prefer such banks. Imagine a call to the People's Republic of China which goes something like this.

Mr. Prime Minister? I am the head of First Agorist Bank. With me are the CEOs of the 18 largest free banks. Approximately 50 million account holders in China, including yourself and many other key leaders, do business with us. We are enforcing section 20.8B, which allows us to freeze services to those accounts in the event of violations of the Non-Aggression Principle. This embargo will end when your troops withdraw.
 




Jtuxyan on March 22, 2010, 05:30:06 pm
Quote
No, we have won nothing more than a temporary occupation.

Because we're the good guys. We want to help and liberate the Iraqi and Afghangi people. If we wanted to exterminate them, the war would be long over, because we are in a position of being able to do that. This is why I say that "Winning a war through insurgency" only works if the enemy actually wants to occupy you instead of just kill you.

This is the point I've been trying to make.

Quote
But there's another scenario. One of the main operations of a modern AnCap society would be secure, confidential 100% reserve banking in a reliable, non-inflationary currency. It would not take long before people would prefer such banks. Imagine a call to the People's Republic of China which goes something like this.

Mr. Prime Minister? I am the head of First Agorist Bank. With me are the CEOs of the 18 largest free banks. Approximately 50 million account holders in China, including yourself and many other key leaders, do business with us. We are enforcing section 20.8B, which allows us to freeze services to those accounts in the event of violations of the Non-Aggression Principle. This embargo will end when your troops withdraw.

I'm willing to bed that after the occupation troops torture a few bankers to death the rest of them will get the image really damn quick and unfreeze those accounts, and if not, I'm sure a sufficiency demented dictator could just take it out on the local population. "For every day that passes when I don't get my money, I gas 10,000 people. Tick toc."

Vs someone who is not a vicious tyrant, an insurgency can work, but that's not a safe bet with an aggressive invader.

Quote
Extermination warfare is the only solution ... but the cost of such war may bankrupt the aggressor in case of defeat

Why? Nerve gas isn't expensive.

terry_freeman on March 23, 2010, 12:17:15 am
Who, other than a mentally deranged nutcase, would be interested in extermination warfare?

You may think the land is what makes a country rich, but that would only indicate a high degree of ignorance about economics.

The value of a country is mostly locked up in the people and their mental and social organization. Bring in unskilled people to run a great factory, and it would be useless in very short order.

Spain confiscated all the gold in South America, with no regard for the population. The result was an initial spurt of spending, followed by rampant inflation, followed by the self-destruction of their empire. This is a terrible business model.

Unlike the idiots who come up with such bizarre scorched-earth scenarios, the People's Republic of China has cooler heads who know something about business and economics. Any study of The Art of War, or the game of Go - China's preferred abstraction of strategic warfare - would make that obvious.

Peaceful trade is worth more than conquest, to any sane individuals.


Jtuxyan on March 23, 2010, 02:12:58 am
Quote
Insert Quote
Who, other than a mentally deranged nutcase, would be interested in extermination warfare?

Quote
Peaceful trade is worth more than conquest, to any sane individuals.

And on what basis do you conclude that lunatics never gain control of major world powers?

I mean. Seriously.

What the hell?

Though I suppose if you ignore Hitler, Stalin, Pol Pot, Kim-Jong Il, Caligula, Vlad the Impaler, the entire Assyrian Empire, the Aztec theocratic state, and every African warlord who's decreed the need for clensing by the machete it's...kind of sorta plausible.

sams on March 23, 2010, 05:34:47 am

Quote

What the hell?

Though I suppose if you ignore Hitler, Stalin, Pol Pot, Kim-Jong Il, Caligula, Vlad the Impaler, the entire Assyrian Empire, the Aztec theocratic state, and every African warlord who's decreed the need for clensing by the machete it's...kind of sorta plausible.

I get your point ... you are talking about the INSANE SCENARIO  ;D

A nutcase who is just interested in power will obviously don't find satisfied unless He gain submission of our AnCap society ... We are doomed  :o Not so fast  ;D

The Key to win such a war is make it so darn expensive  ;) By Using the following tips :

1- Target the Leadership : The Nutcase bastard being first on the list, you can derail the war effort by using targeted assination of the top level of command
2- Assimetric Warfare : A modern army is a formidable machine, but a machine with some nasty problems, target supplies lines and other strategic assets and you will win ... ie: Ballistic anti-aircraft carrier missiles or more nastier stuff.
3- An armed populace : any Nut will likely want the population to be desarmed, but if this an AnCap society, at least 80% of people will have some kind of weapons home, so commiting troops to disarme those people will require a huge army and could backlash has radicalizing more people.
Before sending the Jews to the gaz chambers, Hitler had then surrender their personal weapons through gun control. During the last days of the Guetto of Warsaw, the Jews still managed to get some rifles and resisted the SS ... they were crushed, but they made the point that if you want to live never give up you weapons. those who didn't get out alive of Germany

But in the scenario of just a normal warfare by some greedy and not crazy leader, the AnCap society can win, especial if the economical cost of the war would be astronomical for the attacker
« Last Edit: March 23, 2010, 11:30:27 am by sams »

dough560 on March 23, 2010, 06:12:13 am
Every mass murderer, removed private weapons from the subject population.  Without access to personal weapons, there is no control for the excesses of government.  

Today's firearms take relatively little practice or training for the operator to be effective.  Anyone who can manipulate a weapon's action and press a trigger is a threat to the person initiating force.  Every scenario left the person initiating force without consequences.  A determined population would strike back.  Picking the method, place and time of attack.  John Ringo's book, "Live Free or Die" examined this.  The controlling factor is the ideology of the threatened population.  It would depend on how much damage they wish to do, and to whom.  Not excluding, killing the person responsible.  Regardless of cost.

Extermination is expensive in energy, equipment, personnel and time.  John Ross discussed this in "Unintended Consequences" recounting the German response to the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising during WWII.  When a population has nothing to loose, their effectiveness may only be limited by ignorance.

As a people, we have a belief in the "Rule of Law".  Idealistically, laws based on our constitution.  As a result, when courts fail to correct actions and laws perceived to be unconstitutional, populations have risen and re-instituted constitutional government.

Military personnel swear an oath to uphold and defend the constitution.  Individual understanding of the constitution guides each military member as to lawful orders which are executed in the context of civil statute, the constitution and the law of war.  Many military personnel take their oath and their understanding of the consequences of swearing the oath to heart.

Time and again small groups have demonstrated an effect out of proportion to their size.  Only in limited circumstances would  a small team stand in a toe-to-toe fight with a military unit.  The preferred action  would be picking the time and place and removing the officers and senior non-commissioned officers, bypassing enlisted personnel.  Or destroying equipment essential to the military mission.  Enough "stings" and the military unit fails.



 
















.  

Gillsing on March 23, 2010, 06:20:47 am
But the 'insane' scenario has already happened several times in human history? War is insanity? Oh no, don't worry about the lifeboat to passenger ratio, this ship isn't going to sink. That would be insane. ::)

We have the governments we have largely because people think we need them to protect against some even worse types of governments that we really DO NOT WANT. Maybe they're wrong, but I have yet to see a truly free and lasting society that could prove that. As for extermination wars, maybe we'll get them if the planet gets seriously overcrowded. People aren't that valuable. And nationalism is once again rising. Give it a century, and maybe "shut the borders" becomes "throw them out" and then "we need more space/resources". Or maybe we can put all that behind us? I don't know.

Let's extrapolate some existing trends. Home schooling, which is growing at about 10% or better annually, swells to the point where 30-50% of the population is home schooled. Already, with just a few percent, home schoolers dominate national contests and exams out of proportion to their numbers. Imagine when students and employers wake up and realize that it is nearly impossible to win a spelling bee, a math competition, or anything else, unless one is home schooled. Government schools would collapse.
Could it be that certain home-schoolers drill their kids to excel at either spelling or math, or that the kids strongly prefer one of those subjects, and the flexibility of home-schooling allows them to indulge at the expense of other subjects? Not that this is necessarily the case, as I'm sure that home-schooling by an enthusiastic parent is just fine, but I wouldn't judge the general quality by limited contests or exams. And what about the kids without enthusiastic or educated parents? Surely there will be a demand for the Walmart of schools for those parents who can't afford to send their kids to private tutors? And don't a lot of big employers really, really like employees who've already been taught to stay in line and do what they're told? ;)
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