MacFall on July 14, 2010, 12:11:04 pm
That's a good point, and I agree with you that it's something we would have to overcome. Thing is that without the state around to prop them up, I think any belligerent corporation - regardless of its size - would learn the lesson QUICK.

Unless they managed to convince the population at large that they had a legitimate monopoly on legalized violence, in which case they would be a state, in fact. But once we reach the point at which the actual state has collapsed, it may very well be too late for any such convincing to be possible.
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.

Rorschach on April 28, 2011, 08:21:52 am
I think your reasoning is theoretically sound. But to get from here to there, we might easily pass through a stage when giant corporations still existed.

And they could use physical force and intimidation to achieve their goals. Their primary reason not to do so now is that they have governments to do it for them. Without effective governments, corporations could hire competent security forces, saboteurs, assassins, etc. Who could stop them? If government is only monopoly of force they would not be governments because they would not have an monopoly. They could destroy smaller competitors by kidnapping key personnel etc. Even if the libertarian public was smart enough not to accept control of distribution chains, sequestering of essential resources, etc.....

Sorry, that is too nonspecific for me. Yeah, a giant corporation could hire an assassin, but so could I--then or now. Please pick a real-world corporation and give me a realistic scenario  that you imagine coming to pass. That scenario has to have a pretty well visualized justification and risk-reward analysis behind it. My guess is that you cannot come up with a scenario that involves the initiation of force, that would produce a net benefit to the perpetrators over the long haul.
Coca-Cola protests in Singapore.

gemcat on April 28, 2011, 10:02:09 am
If you really want to play 'Gloom' glance thru http://www.social-engineer.org/
It would seem that ideals and convictions aside the form of govt. in Ceres is a social oligarchy similar to the developmental communities in the old west. Historically these societies had polarization problems within that forced change, not so much official interference but criminal elements and 'bosses' of various kinds. The weak link in security is almost always between someones ears.

SandySandfort on April 28, 2011, 12:46:45 pm
My guess is that you cannot come up with a scenario that involves the initiation of force, that would produce a net benefit to the perpetrators over the long haul.
Coca-Cola protests in Singapore.
[/quote]

Not familiar with that, though I lived there. However, under a government with government protection for the perps, you are certainly correct. However, without government and government protection (e.g., in an anarchy), the initiation of force it is far less likely to work than under a government. And a market anarchy is what EFT is all about.

SandySandfort on April 28, 2011, 12:52:23 pm
If you really want to play 'Gloom' glance thru http://www.social-engineer.org/
It would seem that ideals and convictions aside the form of govt. in Ceres is a social oligarchy similar to the developmental communities in the old west. Historically these societies had polarization problems within that forced change, not so much official interference but criminal elements and 'bosses' of various kinds. The weak link in security is almost always between someones ears.

Please do not abuse the English language. A market anarchy is not a government. In a market anarchy, there are no "bosses" (with the power to initiate force with impunity) thus no oligarchy. (See the "archy" part of oligarchy? It means "ruler." "Anarchy" means no-ruler, so an anarchy, by definition, cannot be an oligarchy. Words have meaning. Pay attention.   

quadibloc on April 28, 2011, 02:36:24 pm
In a market anarchy, there are no "bosses" (with the power to initiate force with impunity) thus no oligarchy.
And in a democracy, there is no crime, because, by definition, crime is illegal! Therefore, the United States is not a democracy, because it does have crime, or perhaps there is no crime in the United States.  :)

In other words, his claim was that what is supposed to be a market anarchy will turn out, in practice, not to be a market anarchy. "Bosses" will take over, not having a muscular state apparatus to keep them in check. You may certainly disagree with that claim, but saying that he failed to understand the definition of a market anarchy is not the appropriate refutation.

SandySandfort on April 28, 2011, 08:56:43 pm
Okay, run me through the steps whereby the bosses take over to the point they can violate the ZAP with impunity. Of course, the government is the bosses. The idea that they can protect you from the bosses, seems a bit myopic.

In a market anarchy, there are no "bosses" (with the power to initiate force with impunity) thus no oligarchy.
And in a democracy, there is no crime, because, by definition, crime is illegal! Therefore, the United States is not a democracy, because it does have crime, or perhaps there is no crime in the United States.  :)

In other words, his claim was that what is supposed to be a market anarchy will turn out, in practice, not to be a market anarchy. "Bosses" will take over, not having a muscular state apparatus to keep them in check. You may certainly disagree with that claim, but saying that he failed to understand the definition of a market anarchy is not the appropriate refutation.

sam on April 28, 2011, 10:26:48 pm
In a market anarchy, there are no "bosses" (with the power to initiate force with impunity) thus no oligarchy.
And in a democracy, there is no crime, because, by definition, crime is illegal!

He did not say no one initiates force, but that no one initiates force with impunity.  Shooting back at rentacops is legal, thus rentacops are less inclined to shoot people.  Rentacops never show up on you tube beating the crap out of someone.  

Rorschach on April 28, 2011, 11:19:26 pm
Right, Anarchy comes in different flavors and one of the flavors ends as quickly as two people realize they are stronger than one, and four realize they are stronger than two. Democracy is based on collective volition, not on a premise of no law but rather "what most people want as law." Anarchy can transition to an oligarchy based on collective power. A ZAP AnCap might maintain its status through cultural rules.

gemcat on April 29, 2011, 09:58:01 am
Ideal situations tend not to last that long. It is also a truism that government is for those who cannot or will not govern themselves. The kids in the story seem refreshingly self reliant and self possessed. I dare say we have allowed our schools to be run by people who do not believe in basic skills and progressive responsibility or in some cases actually believe against them. Make no mistake, the teaching profession is full of idealists (and 'ists of every other kind). Historically, open societies eventually develop war lords and the kind of 'anarchy' everyone deprecates. Oligarchs do not always choose their position, they simply take some responsibility and more is forced upon them every time they do something.

MacFall on April 29, 2011, 10:26:44 am
That can only happen when a society's values include the idea that responsibility can be transferred from person to person. But one of the implications of the non-aggression principle is that responsibility ALWAYS belongs to the person who made and acted on the choice (unless it is transferred by an explicit and mutually-agreeable contract). Assuming a society that embraces that principle, the problem you foresee is obviated. Even if a nascent "oligarch" finds himself being somehow shouldered with the unwanted responsibilities of others, he would find himself unable to press them on anybody else - which means he still has no form of "archos" at his disposal, and hence he is not an oligarch at all, but only somebody who was either too weak-willed to say "no" to responsibilities he couldn't handle, or a thug who thought he could distribute responsibilities against people's wills.

But he would find, in such a society, that such distribution would be extremely difficult. There is no law saying we must accept this burden; we are armed and fully capable at arms. To us, he is but a petty criminal with a big ego. Does he still want to try, when the whole world points its guns at him and says "no"? I almost hope he would, because the most likely outcome is that others like him, seeing his fate as an example, would be far less inclined to try to emulate him.
« Last Edit: April 29, 2011, 10:37:18 am by MacFall »
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.

sam on April 30, 2011, 03:40:31 am
Right, Anarchy comes in different flavors and one of the flavors ends as quickly as two people realize they are stronger than one, and four realize they are stronger than two.

One weak man can kill four strong men quite easily.  This became true when we first became human, and has become ever more true as we command ever more powerful energies.

This is the reason why despite a thousand years of efforts to violently unite Europe under a single ruler, it was never united.

J Thomas on April 30, 2011, 07:00:14 am
Right, Anarchy comes in different flavors and one of the flavors ends as quickly as two people realize they are stronger than one, and four realize they are stronger than two.

One weak man can kill four strong men quite easily.  This became true when we first became human, and has become ever more true as we command ever more powerful energies.

This is the reason why despite a thousand years of efforts to violently unite Europe under a single ruler, it was never united.

And yet, France started out as a defensible island on the Seine river, and expanded to take all of france and alsace-lorraine, and briefly conquered almost all of europe. Germany started out as a helpless area that other nations parked their armies and desultorily fought over, and eventually became a strong nation that briefly conquered almost all of europe. England was once a place that couldn't even fight off Vikings, and eventually turned into Great Britain, with a worldwide empire and the ability to march armies through most of europe whenever they really really wanted to. The AustroHungarian empire....

What is the point? There was a time when all of europe was infested with kings, including Switzerland. What is the big deal that no one king conquered all the others?

Under some circumstances one weak man can kill four strong men. But other things equal, one strong man has a better chance against four weak men.

And mostly we don't kill each other. People mostly look for some way to get along. If some guy wants to call himself the King and direct traffic, and carry out the garbage, and chase thieves, and distribute mail, and the price looks OK, I'll probably just let him until he does something outrageous. If five of them want to call themselves kings and they don't feel like killing each other then that's fine too. I'll call them all Sov.

quadibloc on April 30, 2011, 08:10:28 am
What is the big deal that no one king conquered all the others?
That explains why Europe was the part of the world that sent its people to the New World and Australia, and colonized much of Africa and some of Asia... instead of China, for example, where one Emperor did conquer the territories of all the other rulers.

Where it is impossible to get away with wallowing in backwardness, kings have to take the risk of permitting innovation.

 

anything