Rocketman on April 27, 2010, 12:41:37 pm
The argument has been raised that USN aircraft carriers are totally vulnerable to cruise missles developed by the Chinese and Russians.  I'm not so sure about that.  You have to remember that the U.S. government isn't going to tell the public every new piece of technology that it develops and I'm aware of two things that if developed might be able to protect a carrier from advanced cruise missiles.  One an Aussie has developed an new type of gun called the hellstorm that is currently undergoing tests.  Would you believe a million rounds a minute?  I can see that as soon as it can handle cannon shells similar to the GAU-8 which is what is used on the A-10 that it could replace the Phalanx system currently used on anti-missile ship defense.  The second is an article that I read recently.  The russians are currently developing an microwave system that goes on a russian tank.  Once it senses that an incoming anti-tank missile it sends out a very small localized EMP burst in the direction of the missile and scrambles the electronics and hopefully the firing circuits.  Carriers are going to be prime targets during a major conflict but they are anything but helpless.

Shotgun Wedding on April 27, 2010, 02:46:04 pm
This is all quite thought provoking but what does this have to do with Escape from Terra?

While idiocy is rampant in our reality.Until humans stop thinking in terms of need instead of want, this will continue to be "normal" in the course of human development. One of the most obvious trends in EFT is that the folks out in the belt seem to understand this and are endlessly entertained by the antics of authoritarian Earth. Those of you out there that think that AnCap ideals are pie in the sky have never lived on the edge of civilization. When the barbarians are at the gate Nobody is gonna appoint a committee to deal with the problem they are gonna kill the bastards and then stack the bodies like cord wood. People that really believe that the only answer to all our problems is more taxes, laws and government are THE PROBLEM.

Think it over.
Fightin' fer Peace is like Frakkin' fer Virginity

Rocketman on April 27, 2010, 04:09:27 pm
SGW:  There are links that if you go through some of the replies will become evident how this is revelant to EFT.  Read an interesting article concerning the french airforce during the very early part of WW2 and what you said couldn't happen concerning creating committees to deal with a serious existing threat (namely the nazi's) back then did indeed happen.  They knew that the Nazi's were getting ready to attack them yet instead of getting the best existing aircraft that they had and mass producing them had dozens of different prototypes built and tested wasting time and money.  The main reason of course was that the french aircraft companies all had politicans that wanted the aircraft built in their district (sound familiar?) and the french government had paid for dozens of different aircraft companies designs.  Finally, they had to buy P-36 mohawks from the U.S. but by then it was too late to undue the damage. 

dough560 on April 28, 2010, 03:00:43 am
Also we get a chance to vent about some of our pet peeves.  ;)   Always with due consideration for the feelings of the viewing audience.  ::) 

I would suggest the human condition will continue to develop, not from need or want.  But from the development of individual self determination.  Implied self-interest is something more people are learning about.  We're surrounded by individuals who believe they have the right to hold a gun to our heads.  Occasionally they get what they deserve.  May it happen with greater regularity.

quadibloc on April 28, 2010, 09:39:52 am
Those of you out there that think that AnCap ideals are pie in the sky have never lived on the edge of civilization.
I think that's the problem, though. Yes, this is the natural way for people to govern themselves when they live on the edge of an open frontier. When there are opportunities for everyone to convert their labor into wealth for the taking - instead of people being dependent on getting a job, if there is one, from a business to live.

On the frontier, this way of governing ourselves makes sense. In an overcrowded area, though, economic pressures seem to require more and more effort to suppress them, leading to more authoritarian regimes. If there is no way to apply the AnCap type of governance to that situation without a cull, it's not surprising there is little interest.

sams on April 28, 2010, 09:49:50 am
Those of you out there that think that AnCap ideals are pie in the sky have never lived on the edge of civilization.
I think that's the problem, though. Yes, this is the natural way for people to govern themselves when they live on the edge of an open frontier. When there are opportunities for everyone to convert their labor into wealth for the taking - instead of people being dependent on getting a job, if there is one, from a business to live.

On the frontier, this way of governing ourselves makes sense. In an overcrowded area, though, economic pressures seem to require more and more effort to suppress them, leading to more authoritarian regimes. If there is no way to apply the AnCap type of governance to that situation without a cull, it's not surprising there is little interest.

I think there is a HUGE straw-man into both of you arguments argument : An Ancap Society is not one of self employment nor is the contrary a non ancap society.

An Ancap society or libertarian for those who believe in minimal government, is the the in which VOLUNTARY is the norm, ie : If you feel like doing a living for yourself self employed or not is your up to you. There is a nirvana fallacy of an Ancap world has a frontier only brave new world of self employement and very individualistic self sustained people ... The empirical evidence is inverse : an Ancap society will in the contrary have a much greater cooperation level and it won't be like you can only make a living by grabbing obvious asteroids, but also by working in the huge e specialized industries required to make consumers goods and services restricted only by the willing of people to pay for them and not regulations

Zilabus on April 29, 2010, 11:48:28 pm
Those of you out there that think that AnCap ideals are pie in the sky have never lived on the edge of civilization.
I think that's the problem, though. Yes, this is the natural way for people to govern themselves when they live on the edge of an open frontier. When there are opportunities for everyone to convert their labor into wealth for the taking - instead of people being dependent on getting a job, if there is one, from a business to live.

On the frontier, this way of governing ourselves makes sense. In an overcrowded area, though, economic pressures seem to require more and more effort to suppress them, leading to more authoritarian regimes. If there is no way to apply the AnCap type of governance to that situation without a cull, it's not surprising there is little interest.

I think there is a HUGE straw-man into both of you arguments argument : An Ancap Society is not one of self employment nor is the contrary a non ancap society.

An Ancap society or libertarian for those who believe in minimal government, is the the in which VOLUNTARY is the norm, ie : If you feel like doing a living for yourself self employed or not is your up to you. There is a nirvana fallacy of an Ancap world has a frontier only brave new world of self employement and very individualistic self sustained people ... The empirical evidence is inverse : an Ancap society will in the contrary have a much greater cooperation level and it won't be like you can only make a living by grabbing obvious asteroids, but also by working in the huge e specialized industries required to make consumers goods and services restricted only by the willing of people to pay for them and not regulations

Thank you for that comment sams. I too feel as through the idea of a society completely built up of entrupenurs (I know the spelling in incorret. Forgive me)and people who work for no man but themselves. I think it's very reasonable to say that nearly any industrialized nation will end up tilting towards having more people working for others then making it on their own. It's just unrealistic to think of any other model in a situation that isn't totally ripe with recources and open frontier for the taking.
Bring back the funk.

dough560 on April 30, 2010, 12:03:00 am
When people have choices, they act with implied self interest.  By restricting individual choice, spreading the misery, governments stays in business.

All societies are made up of a variety of people.    Some just want to live their lives as they see fit.  They want to go to work, and go home.  To earn a living, with as little hassle as possible.  They're not interested in the stress involved in creating a new product and getting it to market.  They just want to live their lives as they see fit, working a job paying enough for them to live the way they want.  Others will push the boundaries, failing and succeeding as the case may be.  Others will be in the middle.  They'll work their job, until they sport their chance.

Then we have those who believe they know what's best for everyone.  They do a pretty good job of making everyone miserable, as they steal other peoples profits.  Welcome to government.

Any society must be flexible.  With room for the dreamer and the plodder.  In any healthy society, each person will find their level.

terry_freeman on April 30, 2010, 01:42:50 am
An AnCap society probably won't have corporations with tens of thousands of employees, but it also will lack the institutional reasons such megacorporations exist. Transactions between business A and business B in today's world require a considerable amount of book-keeping and tax overhead. Each entity must record details of the transaction, over and above those needed for their own business purposes, to satisfy the tax lords. Taxes must be paid, or in the case of tax-exempt transactions, proof of exemption must be maintained. This encourages entities to integrate vertically, over and above any innate business advantage of doing so. Regulatory overhead, in a large corporation, can be amortized over many transactions. A large corporation may have entire teams who deal with regulatory compliance alone.

Odds are that corporations will tend to be smaller. How much smaller, we can only guess.

I suspect that an AnCap society will have a lot more reserve capacity than is available today. Supporting $3.5 trillion of federal government, plus an approximately equal amount of state and local government spending, is a huge drain on productivity. Some people will choose to work as hard as before, which will allow them to produce much more than before. Some will choose to spend a lot more time to "stop and smell the roses"; some will engage in more long-term prospective research and intellectual activity.

Having such great reserves of time, savings, and productive capacity, will mean the potential for vast expenditures on whatever purposes may inspire people, or voluntary associations of people - including education, health care, defense, space travel, and so forth.

How inefficient is government? Let's take education, which swallows about half of all local and state spending. Home schoolers are able to do much better with less than a third of the time used by government schools, and vastly less expense. A very conservative estimate would be that a better education could be accomplished for a tenth of the total resources now devoted to that field.  Thomas Jefferson, based upon the usual level of attainment in his day, expected that a child with just three years of formal education would be able to keep books for his or her own business, and read, understand, and amend legal contracts. Frankly, he underestimated the capacity of children to learn - but these attainments seem remarkable today, so used are we to the lousy performance of government schools.


 

MacFall on May 07, 2010, 12:34:44 pm
The only reason there are vast, hierarchical companies at all is because government creates barriers to entry into the market which limit enormously the number of firms in existence. In a free market, every person would be an independent contractor, and firms would be horizontal affiliations between individuals. Management would still exist, but not in the broad pyramid structures we now see. And firm size would be strictly limited to the utility gained by the combination of resources and savings in transaction costs, the latter of which is almost entirely created by government today.

Furthermore, the incentive for firms with different but related functions to combine into large companies would be vastly reduced, so "horizontal integration" would be much less of a factor. A supermarket might combine the services of a pharmacy, grocery, and hardware store - but it is very unlikely that Wal-Mart would have its own producers, wholesale distributors and warehousers for those things. That sort of integration is the result of regulations which make it difficult for smaller and more independent firms to function.

So it is not correct to say that the individualism of the frontier would not "work" in a settled and densely-populated society. In fact it is the lack of government that allows the natural state of things to flourish on the frontier, and the presence of government that prohibits it from functioning in a settled society. But in a free market, firms would be much smaller, more mobile, and therefore more able to solve the problems that would arise in their environment. Different problems from those found on the frontier, to be sure; but they would nevertheless be more quickly and permanently solved by millions of free agents than by a few hulking behemoth companies with millions of wage-slaves in tow.
Government is not, as is often believed, a "necessary evil". Rather, it is a plain evil of such power that it has been able to convince people of its necessity.

Brugle on May 07, 2010, 01:58:28 pm
In a free market, every person would be an independent contractor, and firms would be horizontal affiliations between individuals.
You could be right, but I doubt it.  I don't think that anyone can accurately predict how the people in a free society would organize themselves.  (That's one reason I pay little attention to Kevin Carson.)  I do agree that a typical (however that's defined) firm would be quite a bit smaller.  There may not be a sharp distinction between an employee and an independent contractor--some people could have characteristics of both.

I'd expect there to be hierarchical firms in some industries and environments.  People are not the same, and free societies with high mobility would form a variety of organizations, some of which would be adapted to people with preferences that are different from yours.  I'd expect to see some organizations that are similar (in function if not name) with common modern organizations, but also strikingly different organizations.

quadibloc on May 07, 2010, 08:06:15 pm
So it is not correct to say that the individualism of the frontier would not "work" in a settled and densely-populated society. In fact it is the lack of government that allows the natural state of things to flourish on the frontier, and the presence of government that prohibits it from functioning in a settled society. But in a free market, firms would be much smaller, more mobile, and therefore more able to solve the problems that would arise in their environment.
The condition I see developing in a settled and densely-populated society is not inefficient large companies.

Rather, it is that as people lose the option of striking out on their own as pioneers, their bargaining power in the marketplace is reduced. As well, natural resources like arable land, water, and minerals become more scarce relative to the number of people. So those who live by selling their labor become poorer, while those who are owners of resources become richer.

This is the situation that gives rise to demagogic revolutionaries on the one hand, and the rich banding together against the mob on the other hand.

terry_freeman on May 08, 2010, 01:13:23 pm
What makes you think that bargaining power depends solely upon the ability to strike out on the frontier? If your thesis were even approximately correct, people in large cities would earn no more than people scratching out a subsistence on the frontiers. Instead, people in the cities earn more.

Division of labor increases productivity. On the frontier subsistence farm, one is too busy trying to do everything - building a house, furnishing it, creating tools, working the land, guarding against pests - too busy to specialize and improve productivity.

In larger organizations - which can be voluntary, contrary to the mythology of state-worshipers - people specialize and improve their skills; the overall systemic productivity rises, and individuals prosper. If wealth flows to a few rather than many, it is most likely due to the use of coercion - that is, the government.

Shotgun Wedding on May 18, 2010, 04:46:48 am
Well, while I might tend to you agree with you emotionally, free speech means idiots get to have their say too.  Nothing  demands that anyone else has to listen to them though.

Is there a "kill" or "filter" function that can be used so each person can filter out those they consider to be offensive, or too stupid to describe?

-Paul


Hi Paul and All!
The filters you require can be purchased at any pharmacy, supermarket, hardware or home improvement center. They come in all shapes and colors and they work really well. They're called earplugs. They not only filter out the incessant buzzing stupidity of liberal koolaid drinkers, it'll protect your hearing when you delete one of the really loud and obnoxious types. A .45 can be very noisy, so protect your hearing! ::)
SGW ;D
Fightin' fer Peace is like Frakkin' fer Virginity

terry_freeman on May 25, 2010, 10:08:06 am
This is a review of an interesting study of life away from the State:

http://reason.com/archives/2010/05/25/life-on-the-edge