terry_freeman on October 13, 2010, 08:33:55 am
Somebody (I forget who) asked about an AnCap society and NAMBLA. Before addressing that topic, this article caught my eye; Walter Block was addressing the topic of child abuse in general.

http://www.lewrockwell.com/block/block167.html

I would add one point which I did not read in Walter Block's article, unless I missed it.

In an AnCap society, people will be much more interconnected by voluntary associations. Why? People can't do it all alone. When there are, for example, no government-issue food stamps, no government-issue welfare checks, no government-issue retirement pensions, what do people do? They turn to the extended family, to their churches and/or fraternal organizations, and so forth. When people are "plugged in" to such voluntary associations, a lot of monitoring naturally takes place. The people who help you want to know that you and your children are being helped. If they're dropping off bags of food and you are getting fat but your children are losing weight, they'll ask questions. Are your kids eating? Are there some health issues? Have you taken them to Dr. So-and-so, with whom we have an arrangement with for free care?

Some people have a vision of AnCap society not as a society, but a bunch of hostile individuals in armed camps who lack any connections with other individuals. This makes no sense; forswearing initiation of force does not turn people into hostile hermits. On the contrary, non-agressors are more engaged with their fellows. Consider the Amish, for example; they forswear not only aggressive use of force, but all use of force; they are very social creatures, the very opposite of hermits.

Michael Fleischer, who raised the question, conceded that an anarchist society would have less child abuse, for many reasons. I believe this is correct. This alone should be enough, on pragmatist grounds, to drop the question; it is not fair to demand perfection from any system; being better than the existing state should be enough.

All societies change over time, in a discovery process; "society" is just another word for "market" or "the sum of all voluntary exchanges." Coercive structures ( governments ) tend to reduce the effectiveness of societies in discovering solutions to the problems people care about.

Some people wonder about justice for people who can't afford to hire police, in particular children who have little property at their disposal. If we agree that there will be voluntary contributions to provide food, health care, and education - and history shows many examples - then why not voluntary contributions to protect the rights of the indigent and of children? In the same way that people today donate to animal shelters and food banks, they'll donate to children's centers. Those centers will not have extra powers, they won't be immune to suits like today's police forces or CYS, but they'll do the job, to the degree that is humanly possible. It's always going to be possible for a wealthy nutcase to do strange and perverse and awful things in the privacy of his gated complex, but that is true in any society; whereas in a government-encumbered society, the wealthy nutcase can externalize the costs of defending his "peculiar institutions."

J Thomas on October 13, 2010, 10:34:09 am

In an AnCap society, people will be much more interconnected by voluntary associations. Why? People can't do it all alone.

That makes perfect sense to me. We need a lot of interconnections and if the government doesn't coerce them then they will have to be voluntary.

There could be some AnCap societies that just don't have those connections, where people are sparse and don't interact a whole lot. That could happen. But they would necessarily be anomalies, unless we suffer a population crash.

Some libertarians talk about their rights to be left alone to the point it sounds like they really do want to be alone. But it's hard to arrange that for a whole lot of people when we have 6 billion+ people to deal with.

bjdotson on October 13, 2010, 11:58:01 am
The cure for child abuse can be found strapped to your hip in a free society

terry_freeman on October 13, 2010, 02:45:48 pm
I forgot to mention: in an AnCap society, it will be the norm for children to be armed at much younger ages than is the custom today. Along with this power will go greater responsibility; children will be taught that guns are to be used for grave purposes, not for "he wanted me to do the dishes before I could hang out at the mall" moments.

Some people find this a very scary prospect - "Kids Gone Wild." That may happen sometimes, no society is perfect. But experience has shown that babying "children" too much results in atrophy of their ability to make moral judgments. In farm country, children are trained to do things which boggle the minds of cityfolk - riding horses, driving trucks and tractors, shooting game, and so forth. Those children who handle their responsibilities well are given more; those who fail to handle responsibility are cut back.

Jthomas, yes, in the wild frontiers of space, people will spend a lot of time alone. Unless their ships repair themselves and grow food and recycle air and water with 100% efficiency, however, they'll need to rejoin society from time to time.

Down here, if we ever throw off the shackles of government ( we should be so lucky ), it's too crowded to be a hermit in most places. Those who have real hermit tendencies will drift toward the mountains, as they have for millennia; the rest of us will migrate to more sociable environs. Historically, until the rise of the Welfare State, Americans created a vast profusion of voluntary benevolent associations for every conceivable purpose.

I cannot stress the role of government manipulation of money overmuch. There have been cycles for hundreds of years, caused by such manipulation, but with the rise of central banking, the abolition of private ownership of gold in 1934, and the closing of the gold window in 1971, the value of the dollar has been destroyed. This is a terrible disincentive for savings, and savings are the device by which individuals and benevolent associations are best able to solve many problems. Even modest inflation of 2-3% will destroy half the value of your savings in 20-30 years - which converts a difficult but possible task such as saving for old age to an effectively impossible task for most.




Brugle on October 13, 2010, 03:48:30 pm
Some libertarians talk about their rights to be left alone to the point it sounds like they really do want to be alone.
Your "sounds like" circuitry is malfunctioning.  A race car mechanic who constantly talks about improving brakes is not trying to get his race car to go slower overall.  A libertarian who constantly talks about the right to be left alone (presumably by government thugs) is not trying to be alone.

In my experience, a typical libertarian has a greater appreciation for the benefits of society than a typical statist.

macsnafu on October 13, 2010, 03:53:18 pm
I forgot to mention: in an AnCap society, it will be the norm for children to be armed at much younger ages than is the custom today. Along with this power will go greater responsibility; children will be taught that guns are to be used for grave purposes, not for "he wanted me to do the dishes before I could hang out at the mall" moments.


And on that note, check out #12 on this list - Iver Johnson's "Safe" Revolvers:

http://www.cracked.com/article_18772_13-wildly-irresponsible-vintage-ads-aimed-at-kids.html
I love mankind.  It's PEOPLE I can't stand!  - Linus Van Pelt.

pchkoreff on October 13, 2010, 05:07:08 pm
Holy smokes, I gotta check in on this forum more often.  That's great writing, terry_freeman!

Tucci78 on October 18, 2010, 02:41:58 am
I cannot stress the role of government manipulation of money overmuch. There have been cycles for hundreds of years, caused by such manipulation, but with the rise of central banking, the abolition of private ownership of gold in 1934, and the closing of the gold window in 1971, the value of the dollar has been destroyed. This is a terrible disincentive for savings, and savings are the device by which individuals and benevolent associations are best able to solve many problems. Even modest inflation of 2-3% will destroy half the value of your savings in 20-30 years - which converts a difficult but possible task such as saving for old age to an effectively impossible task for most.

Boy, you talk about child abuse and we get to abuse of the medium of exchange.

By eerie coincidence, i spent some hours yesterday helping one of my granddaughters with a "Social Studies" assignment which involved not only child abuse (for so I do describe the government schools to which my daughter and son-in-law send their kids) but also government debauchment of the currency.

I've long considered the concept of "Social Studies" an abject idiocy.  Consider analytical versus synthetic approaches to the study of anything and you'll understand why.  When Ludwig von Mises suggested the synthesis of "social sciences" into what he dubbed praxeology - the considered examination of purposeful human action - he was looking at an in-gathering of psychology, sociology, political economics, et alia, he was proposing that this be done at the university level (at the very least).  There was no real insistence that such a gatherum approach to the study of praxis be undertaken by munchkins. 

Analysis is a method by which big, multifaceted concepts are chopped into component factors so that each lesser process can be isolated and grokked for its impact, and then one goes back to the big picture to see how every parsed-out element grinds together.  For little kids, the ability to break things up into manageable parts is a skill that needs to be taught.

"Social Studies" screws this up.  "Social Studies" is anti-analytical

This assignment provided further proof (as if proof were needed) that "Social Studies" is a vicious malignancy.

The kids in my granddaughter's sixth-grade class were required to prepare a mock menu for a supposed "caveman restaurant," listing appetizers and entrees and desserts and beverages that might have been found on a pre-agricultural eatery's bill-of-fare, each item priced according to a teacher-suggested type of exchange rate.

The teacher's hand-out (obviously photocopied from a prepared lesson plan book) mentioned exchange items like "a sabertoothed tiger fang, berries, a hand axe."

Shit. So I had to explain the concept of money to a twelve-year-old kid who really should have gotten this in "Social Studies" some years ago, don'tcha think? 

I took it down to the old "functions four" rhyme of classic (pre-Keynesian) economics, then pointed out to her that  some artifacts (like "a hand axe") could not be standardized.

"One person knaps a piece of good flint into a well-shaped hand axe, while another picks up a lousy rock - a piece of slate - does a botched job, and then tries to exchange it to you as if it's a proper piece of paleolithic technology.  Is hand axe number one exactly equivalent to hand axe number two?"

"No.  I get it."

"So if you're going to use something as a medium of exchange in a division-of-labor economy, it's got to function as money.  It's got to be relatively imperishable - which leaves out 'berries' - it's got to be uniform from one bit to another - no 'hand axes' - and it's got to be something that's rare enough to concentrate value so that you can carry a meal's worth of purchasing power in your pocket or purse."

Then I gave her a bit of mining history, telling her that even people on a "keep banging the rocks together" level of technology could bash copper ore into metallic copper, and suggested that she set her menu prices in terms of standard-sized "bits" of copper.

And that led to a discussion of currency inflation in America over the past century and more, helping her get a handle on how much of the value of Federal Reserve notes (and, since 1963, base metal tokens pretty much devoid of silver) has been thieved away by government counterfeiting.

Of course, none of this did the kid ever get in "Social Studies."  Nor will she ever.

Gonna be interesting to see how her flaming idiot socialist "Social Studies" ex-Education major of a teacher takes the introduction of the concept of "a medium, a measure, a standard, a store" as my poor young granddaughter is presently trying to grasp it. 

So let's consider the notion of "child abuse" as going beyond NAMBLA fiddling with the naughty bits, or parental pounding upon their progeny's posteriors, or starving little kids into marasmus. 

Government schooling - particularly "Social Studies" - is definitely child abuse.
--
"I is a great believer in peaceful settlements," Jik-jik assured him. "Ain't nobody as peaceful as a dead trouble-maker."
-- Keith Laumer, Retief's War (1966)

terry_freeman on October 18, 2010, 01:41:44 pm
Government schooling is child abuse, period. Kids would be far better served if government were to abolish compulsory attendance laws, abolish regulations, get its dead hands out of the textbook selection process, close down the government schools, and stop collecting taxes to fund the same.

Google "free market education" and "James Tooley" for more information. See also Andrew J Coulson's and E. G. West's books on the topic of free-market education.


 

anything