Tucci78 on April 25, 2011, 07:20:44 pm
Ah, you have deep feelings about it. I don't, so I'll just back off. I can understand your position. After all, as one of the 1% of the public who owns 49% of the wealth, or one of the top 20% who owns 87%, mostly by inheritance, of course you want to keep what's yours. How could you live without it? There's no possible chance you could pick yourself up and earn it again if you lost it -- you aren't that kind of guy.

Nope.  I'm broke - deeply in the hole - medically disabled, and so unarguably on the verge of death that I can't even get life insurance except on a one-for-one payment/payout ratio.

And you surely are an asshole, ain'tcha?

The sort of "100% inheritance tax" which you advocate, asshole, would leave my survivors without a roof over their heads when eventually I do die. 

But that's what you want, right? 

The people you call "super-rich" are always going to be able to arrange their affairs so as to evade confiscatory government exactions. It's people like me - or, at least, the members of my family - you're intent upon pillaging.
"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)

Tucci78 on April 25, 2011, 07:44:27 pm
As I see it, the problem with male-female equality is the same as most other forms.  What is to be desired for fairness' sake is to have equality of opportunity, not a forced equality of results.  Where women are as capable as men (and vice-versa), they should be allowed to compete equally.  Where certain factors such as body size, mass, and strength come into play, one would expect that males will probably outnumber females.

Anytime I read or hear somebody putting any sort of value on "fairness," I figure they're either gaudily stupid or they're intent upon the perpetration of fraud.  

I'm not sure which conclusion is the more charitable in the present case.  

There really can't be any kind of voluntary "fairness" in human affairs. The whole notion assumes the imposition of some kind of authoritarian ordination, the structuring of processes and/or outcomes on the basis of some persons' ideas of what "fair" should be.  

People don't look for "fairness" even when they're shopping for groceries.  They're always trying to get themselves some kind of advantage, and if they can do it without stealing that's precisely what they'll do.  One can live a perfectly moral life, without ever once violating the rights of other people, and not give a damn about "fairness."

So let's quit putting any value whatsoever on "fairness" - which is not susceptible to achievement even if it were in any way either desirable or moral - and look instead at the abatement of purposeful meddling in human affairs, interventions undertaken to favor or impair any parties in any way at all.  

Such interventions are most commonly (and most perniciously) undertaken by the officers of civil government.  Today we see a lot of this crap pushed forward under the color of "fairness" but we've also had it fly the flag of "market efficiency" and "national interest."  

Whether it's "affirmative action" or "natural monopoly" or "protective tariff," it's never more than an excuse to screw around with the voluntary interactions of human beings.

If we can't ever get "fairness" (and, indeed, it is both stupid and injurious to try), we can get rid of measures which interfere with voluntary human action under the guise of achieving supposedly "fair" processes or outcomes.

Why don't we stick with that?
"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)

MacFall on April 25, 2011, 08:00:50 pm

So what accounts for your ignorance, Holt?


My guess: the same reason why most statists remain so after encountering arguments in favor of voluntary association as opposed to political association. Namely, abject terror at the idea that one's worldview, long held at the cost of much intellectual and emotional energy, is fundamentally and thoroughly corrupt. The admission of ideas, both factual and theoretical, which attack the central premise of statism (that legalized violence against the non-violent is just, or at least necessary) induces painful cognitive dissonance, and must therefore be fastidiously ignored lest one be forced to jettison his ill-considered, yet dearly held, convictions.
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.

MacFall on April 25, 2011, 08:11:26 pm
Ya know you keep on saying your brand of anarchy is better and I'll keep asking the same old question.
Why hasn't it ever worked then?

Because the state violently opposes the formation of non-state societies. Pretty simple. That statists constantly ask that question reminds me of playground bullies who hit their victims with their own hands and yell "why do you keep hitting yourself? Hurr hurr hurr!"
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.

Holt on April 25, 2011, 08:12:21 pm
Ya know you keep on saying your brand of anarchy is better and I'll keep asking the same old question.
Why hasn't it ever worked then?

Because the state violently opposes the formation of non-state societies. Pretty simple. That statists constantly ask that question reminds me of playground bullies who hit their victims with their own hands and yell "why do you keep hitting yourself? Hurr hurr hurr!"

And thus the anarchist points out the problem with his ideology without actually realising he has done so.

MacFall on April 25, 2011, 08:17:26 pm
So how about a country which runs government as a private enterprise and seeks to remove upfront taxation by making you want to pay for its services?

That's a lot like what some "rightist" AnCaps believe in. The problem is that government as normally considered is, by definition, a territorial monopoly. No matter what it is supposed to do, or forbidden to do, the fact that it has a territorial monopoly means that the people who run a government will simply do whatever they can get away with. And because the privileges of that monopoly include the use of legalized violence, they can get away with a lot.

Take away the monopoly aspect of government, and you're 90% of the way to solving the problem of politics.
« Last Edit: April 25, 2011, 08:20:30 pm 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.

MacFall on April 25, 2011, 08:19:33 pm
Ya know you keep on saying your brand of anarchy is better and I'll keep asking the same old question.
Why hasn't it ever worked then?

Because the state violently opposes the formation of non-state societies. Pretty simple. That statists constantly ask that question reminds me of playground bullies who hit their victims with their own hands and yell "why do you keep hitting yourself? Hurr hurr hurr!"

And thus the anarchist points out the problem with his ideology without actually realising he has done so.


Pray enlighten me, then.
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.

Holt on April 25, 2011, 08:23:11 pm
Pray enlighten me, then.

As you clearly point out. States always end up consuming any nearby attempts at an anarchist society. Whether they come willingly or not is irrelevant. They are always consumed.
If any form of anarchy was superior this would not have happened.
It's survival of the fittest and anarchy is the retarded guy with messed up legs.

Aardvark on April 25, 2011, 08:28:34 pm
Quote
Me: I like a society that creates basic equal opportunity, but not equal outcomes.

Quote
Tucci78: I find it remarkable that anyone with enough intelligence to string words in a row should succumb to the fallacy that "society" in this sense is in any way an entity with conscious purpose and volition instead of being merely the process by which individual human beings interact without aggression.  Thomas Paine opened his Common Sense with a perfectly satisfactory differentiation between "society" and "government" in 1776, and it's as if that straightforward appreciation soars way to hellangone over the heads of people today.

How is it that anyone should ever expect "society" to serve any function in creating "basic equal opportunity" of any kind for any person?  This isn't the way society functions to begin with, and society can never assume such a capability and remain "society" as it is correctly defined. To expect that such were possible - not to mention that it could be of any benefit whatsoever - is simply not sane.

Not sure what I said that was so controversial. It's a pretty standard conservative position. I don't care how Thomas Paine defined the words "society" and "government" at the moment. How about this definition?

A society or a human society is (1) a group of people related to each other through persistent relations such as social status, roles and social networks. (2) A large social grouping that shares the same geographical territory, subject to the same political authority and dominant cultural expectations.

All I was trying to get across was that a society should creates basic equal opportunity, meaning, in the context I meant it, access to a certain level of basic public education for its citizens. In this day and age, that usually means schooling through high school. On Ceres, it could mean access to free school programs through the tanglenet, which anyone could use or ignore as they desired.

After that, I say, it's up to the individual to advance on his own.

YMMV

J Thomas on April 25, 2011, 08:31:13 pm
Ya know you keep on saying your brand of anarchy is better and I'll keep asking the same old question.
Why hasn't it ever worked then?

Because the state violently opposes the formation of non-state societies. Pretty simple. That statists constantly ask that question reminds me of playground bullies who hit their victims with their own hands and yell "why do you keep hitting yourself? Hurr hurr hurr!"

And thus the anarchist points out the problem with his ideology without actually realising he has done so.

Pray enlighten me, then.

He's saying that to keep a government from oppressing you, you have to somehow get the power to make the government stop oppressing you.

And it's unlikely that groups of disorganised terrorists can beat the government police and armies.

So long as governments can move in and oppress you whenever you try to do without them, you won't be free of them, they can oppress you whether or not you agree they are legitimate.

I would say he has a valid point -- you need some method to keep governments down. However, he seems to assume that no method can work for that. I want to note that various places people have gotten rid of governments they didn't like, often without a military defeat. Like, Marcos fled the Philippines without a defeat, he just realized that people weren't going to put up with him any more. They then chose to start a new government, but nobody made them do that -- they just didn't have the concept of not doing so.

The Shah left Iran without being defeated. People stopped cooperating, and he couldn't send the army out to *make* them cooperate, and the army was loosing cooperation too. The Iranian people set up a new government but nobody made them do it -- they chose to.

There are a lot of examples of that sort of thing. Some Cubans claim that they did it that way with Batista. People were sick of him and they just stopped doing what he wanted, and he ran away. Then Castro with his gunmen came down out of the mountains and started a government, and nobody thought to stop him.

What if people got so sick of their government they threw it out -- and just didn't make a new one? Could that happen? So far every time they have made a new one because they thought they ought to. But if they had the idea not to, maybe they wouldn't. And then we'd see what happened next.

Holt on April 25, 2011, 08:42:48 pm
Ah but Thomas you forget. If there is no government in a region then another will move in to stake its claim. Assuming the region has something it wants. As such it is better to have a government of your own making then someone elses. Why do you think groups like Al Qaeda can actually recruit? It's not just about the religion it is about removing the foreign backed governments and replacing them with ones made by the locals.

The only way you could ever achieve a true anarchist land is in a place with no natural resources or anything of value.

J Thomas on April 25, 2011, 08:45:34 pm

Nope.  I'm broke - deeply in the hole - medically disabled, and so unarguably on the verge of death that I can't even get life insurance except on a one-for-one payment/payout ratio.

The sort of "100% inheritance tax" which you advocate, asshole, would leave my survivors without a roof over their heads when eventually I do die.

You claim that you are deeply in debt but that your family can't afford to lose your inheritance. Hmm.

Then you argue that the rich can shelter their assets, but you can't.  Hmm.

So, if we had a 100% inheritance tax and everybody had ways to shelter their assets from it, it wouldn't be a big deal for you, it would be a sham tax.

And if we had a 100% inheritance tax that managed to avoid such shelters, you would have things worked out with your family so they wouldn't be hurt so bad. You'd work out ways so they could take care of themselves, to the extent that the government redistribution stuff failed them as you would assume it would.

So it sounds like your complaint is that it would be bad for you if it suddenly happened, when you have made your choices on the assumption it won't happen.

Just like you would be hurt if there was suddenly a big tax on gold, when you had been putting assets into gold. Or if government policy allowed gasoline prices to go way up after you bought a Hummer and an SUV.

You would be hurt because the current system allows you to be deeply in debt and still pass on lots of assets to your family, and you depend on that, and if it suddenly changed you would be out of luck.

But I said I was backing off and here I am getting interested in what you say. I really need to back off.

For myself, I'm foregoing investment options that require me to lock in assets for a long time, because I don't trust much of that. I'm pretty flexible and ready to adapt my dwindling resources in a variety of ways, so I'm not too much worried about particular government policies except for the worst ones. Of course, by avoiding big losses I'm guaranteeing myself small losses that will add up. I wish I had something to be confident in.

J Thomas on April 25, 2011, 08:50:18 pm
Ah but Thomas you forget. If there is no government in a region then another will move in to stake its claim. Assuming the region has something it wants. As such it is better to have a government of your own making then someone elses. Why do you think groups like Al Qaeda can actually recruit? It's not just about the religion it is about removing the foreign backed governments and replacing them with ones made by the locals.

The only way you could ever achieve a true anarchist land is in a place with no natural resources or anything of value.

A land full of anarchists might look like it would be more trouble than it was worth to conquer. You are assuming that can't happen.

If it was small and weak enough, and it had resources that were valuable enough, one or more foreign governments might send in their armies to genocide the anarchists and then use the resources after the people were gone. I can see that possibility. But I don't see that it's inevitable every time. If the area that must be conquered is too large, or the resources too scattered, or the foreign governments wimpy enough, or the anarchists too ferocious, it needn't turn out like that at all.

Holt on April 25, 2011, 08:52:56 pm
Problem. Anarchists are by their very nature unorganised. You'd be outnumbered and outgunned. Plus you would have to deal with the fact that a lot of the anarchists would just say "fuck this I'm not getting myself killed over this" and not get involved in your attempt to repel any foreign intervention. After all you are a self centered lot.


Tucci78 on April 25, 2011, 08:56:47 pm
In response to:
Is such injury an inevitable or even a high-probability outcome?

...of sexual contact between a female in the first or second decade of life and a physically mature male, we see posted:

The default assumption in our culture is that sex is a very emotionally intense experience, and thus females are in constant grave danger from men who would exploit them for their own gratification.

Because it's the woman who gets pregnant, women tend, more than men, to reject the view of sex as being legitimate as a mere physical pleasure, and instead see it as belonging to a context of a committed romantic relationship.

Traditionally, of course, our views derive from a situation that no longer exists to the same extent in the developed world. A peasant farmer family keeps its sons home to work on the farm; the daughters can't work as hard, so they're married off. If one loses her virginity, that becomes impossible.

While we no longer quite have the strict morality of those times, that still very much forms the basis of our society's thinking in these matters.

In the context of the present discussion, and with emphasis upon a sociocultural setting in the AnCap society of Ceres and the Belt stipulated as being significantly different both from subsistence-level agricultural economies (the default state of humanity for most of recorded history) and our prevailing Western industrial economy, the "default assumption" mentioned above simply does not obtain.  Should it be accorded any weight at all?

Indeed, it is false to assume that in a subsistance agriculture setting "A peasant farmer family keeps its sons home to work on the farm," if only because natural population increase over the generations must result in too many people trying to get their living from the same plot of arable land.  Forget about how "the daughters can't work as hard."  A farmstead perfectly adequate to support one married couple and their children will not sustain the third and fourth generations of offspring and their families, even with "green revolution" advances in productivity.  Ceteris paribus, you ain't gonna keep 'em down on the old farm, whether they've seen Paree or not.  New land must be taken into cultivation, or other ways of getting a living have to be found. 

Anybody reading here ever given much thought to the present condition of the Pennsylvania Dutch and their response to the ever-increasing prices of farmland in Lancaster County and regions hitherabouts? 

Again, we have the fundamentally false consideration of "society" as if it were a concrete entity with conscious purpose and intention ("the basis of our society's thinking in these matters"), and that is incredibly stupid.  What we should more properly speak about are prevailing suppositions and prejudices, none of which have real force except as they are codified in statute law and similar ordinances which have effect in the affairs of human beings only as they are imposed upon people by way of violent government action. 

No aggressive government violence - as in the AnCap society of Ceres and the Belt - and there's no "basis of our society's thinking" on matters pertaining to consensual sexual activities undertaken by competent moral agents. 

Now can we speak about the criteria by which people in a society not burdened by government thuggery might decide moral agency? 
"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)

 

anything