quadibloc on April 27, 2011, 10:30:31 am
Well, just as in an AnCap society, one would have a choice to consort with a prostitute on a street corner, or go to a bordello run to high standards... one would have a choice to buy milk in a big supermarket, or to go to a farm run by hippies.

The AnCap idea is for the market to take the place of regulation. That is something I didn't touch on in my post.

But the issue of being allowed to engage in dangerous activities is one issue. The person who started the discussion on this subject was talking about a different issue - of being allowed to make those activities a lot more dangerous than they appear to be.

Just because an AnCap society doesn't have government bureaucrats, does that mean that the ZAP has loopholes big enough to drive a truck through?

That's still a question even if you believe adults should be free to drink raw milk.

Holt on April 27, 2011, 11:20:55 am
Well there is question of standards. For instance the meat industry in the USA permits the heavy use of antibiotics and steroids in meat animals. As such this means the US meat supply is tainted with these steroids as well as antibiotics. The steroids can have varying effects although the meat industry in the USA puts a lot of effort into muddying the water as they'd loose money if they were unable to use steroids to bring their animals up to slaughter weight faster. The antibiotics result in antibiotic resistant bacteria developing faster which can cause knock on effects in healthcare.

Meanwhile in European countries things like this are either outright banned or much more heavily regulated due to the severe health concerns involved. Meat from the USA is barred from import in many countries too.

In an AnCap society this wouldn't happen and we'd all get to enjoy meat laced with steroids....wait no that's not something I'd enjoy.

Aardvark on April 27, 2011, 01:35:33 pm
Quote
Holt: In an AnCap society this wouldn't happen and we'd all get to enjoy meat laced with steroids....wait no that's not something I'd enjoy.

Out of curiosity, how would you know if you haven't been ingesting harmful steroid-laced beef? About 10-15% of EU beef, at least in the article I read, uses steroids. Unlike the US, which has a half-dozen FDA approved steroids that don't leave harmful byproducts in the meat, those illegal cattle producers in the EU use whatever steroids are handy, including those of the harmful variety. A strong case can be made that EU beef is more harmful than US beef. I'd rather have a steak in Texas than one in London, thank you.

Really, you never seem to spare an opportunity to attack the US with whatever nonsense and half-truths you can manufacture. As bad as the US has become under this administration, you still wouldn't want to get into a pissing contest about which organization is worse, the US or the EU. So enjoy the 15% freedom that Brussels permits you to have. Of course, it was your choice, after all: England conducted a referendum before joining the EU and your countrymen passed it overwhelmingly -- oh, wait, that's not right, your politicians promised a referendum, but you never had one and now they don't want to talk about it.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V3FnpaWQJO0

J Thomas on April 27, 2011, 02:39:26 pm
Quote
Holt: In an AnCap society this wouldn't happen and we'd all get to enjoy meat laced with steroids....wait no that's not something I'd enjoy.

Out of curiosity, how would you know if you haven't been ingesting harmful steroid-laced beef? About 10-15% of EU beef, at least in the article I read, uses steroids. Unlike the US, which has a half-dozen FDA approved steroids that don't leave harmful byproducts in the meat, those illegal cattle producers in the EU use whatever steroids are handy, including those of the harmful variety. A strong case can be made that EU beef is more harmful than US beef. I'd rather have a steak in Texas than one in London, thank you.

Everything you say could be true. It's the sort of situation where people have a lot of money depending on convincing the public of something, so we can expect a lot of lies, but there's a chance you have the truth of it here.

But I don't quite understand what you think is going on. Is it that 10% to 15% of EU farmers are criminals who illegally do whatever they think will make money faster? But 100% of US farmers do what they think is best for the final consumers?

Well, of course it's predictable that either farmer will do whatever gets him the best profit. If a bad steroid works better than a good steroid, he'll use it if he can get away with it. If he's supposed to stop using the steroids for a period before sale but continued use results in more money, he'll keep using it.

Unless there are adequate inspections. Like they say in the Navy, "If it isn't inspected, it's neglected.".

In any system, if you can't tell whether you're being cheated, you probably are. Unless you can trust your sellers to do the right thing whether anybody finds out or not.

Tucci78 on April 27, 2011, 02:51:15 pm
On the subject at hand, I for once think that a An-Cap society would be more conservative, especially since the cost of recklessness won't be shifted to somebody else through benefits et al.

The cost has to carried either by the Parents or they are unwilling the youngster would had bear it by becoming an adult working et al.

sams' fixation on "cost" here is particularly senseless, making it plain that he has no more real understanding of economics than he has of any other aspect of purposeful human action.  

One aspect of the authors' posited setting in this graphic novel which seems to have escaped sams' understanding completely is that in an AnCap society, there is no government operating to thieve away the value of productive human effort.  

Let's assume that sams doesn't know (or is neurotically thought-blocking on the appreciation) that civil government in most present-day polities - and particularly in these United States - deprives the private citizen of seven-eighths (at a "conservative" estimate) of the transfer value he/she generates in all remunerative transactions.

And this says nothing about the direct and indirect costs of government "winner-picking" economic regulations, the greatest number of which have not even the most tenuous fictional pretense of "consumer protection."  

"Government services" rendered - it is laughably contended that these come "in return" for the taxes and regulations imposed involuntarily upon the victims - never equal the value of what is taken, nor do they compensate the mulcted private person for the opportunity costs of which he/she is deprived as his/her resources are thieved away.  Even were the machinery of civil government not glaringly inefficient in itself, "Taxation is not levied for the benefit of the taxed."

I think it safe to conclude that sams is using the term "conservative" in the sense that characterizes the modern Anglophone political social/traditional "conservative," a statist authoritarian desirous of using government thugs aggressively to suppress those of his/her neighbors' speech and actions which disquiet said "conservative" person's neurotic sense of propriety.

Y'know.  The kind of cement-head who insists upon figleafing the genitalia on statuary because the sight of a putto's pudenda might cause naughty thoughts.  

With it being understood that these people are insane, and that sams is emphatically not talking about the economic aspects of political conservatism when he uses the term "conservative," let us ask whether or not the people in an AnCap society would necessarily demonstrate this kind of insanity.  

Indeed, granted better economic conditions than obtain in our present highly-taxed (a seven-eighths rip-off, remember) and viciously "regulated" polities, would there be any economic incentives which could or would cause the people of Ceres and the Belt - whatever "arrangement for living" they might devise in terms of the getting and nurturing of offspring - to be as sexually tight-assed as sams keeps on senselessly insisting they'd be?

Under economic conditions of scarcity, where the material welfare of the private person is constantly degraded by government depredations and government suppression of productive enterprise, the margins of survival are such that people will tend to constrain their reproductive activities so as to reduce exposure to potential adversity.  Denied access to contraceptive means, they'll try to keep down the costs associated with raising offspring by reducing fecundative sexual activity.

This isn't sociocultural.  It's economic.  It simply gains sociocultural (including religious) coloration as a matter of custom.  Remove the economic constraints - as we'd see in the materially wealthy AnCap society of the Asteroid Belt in the context of Escape From Terra - and the "conservative" bullshit that sams keeps peddling will most assuredly disappear.

Now, let's look at what's really crawled up sams' urethra to inflame his bladder.

I find the somewhat pro-NAMBLA tone disturbing, especially since it is mixed with Stephane Molineux/Bork nonsense concerning children. The truth is that Children become adults around 18 years old and before that they don't have the mental capacity to consent or make certain choices ...

Since there was never a society where it was socially acceptable to let your kids with a sexual freak, I bet NAMBLOID caught would get in a hell of problem, has the children guardians can castrate him. I find it a great flaw of AnCap to say that ''children are free'' will at the same time blidning themselves to the fact that same children don't have the mental, emotional and personal capacity to make most choices.

For the purpose of clarity, NAMBLA is an acronym for "North American Man-Boy Love Association," a group which first aggregated sometime in the 1970s to make the case for the decriminalization of consenting sexual relationships between males regardless of age.  

Bear in mind that in most Anglophone jurisdictions today, voluntary sexual contact between minor children - male or female, heterosexual or homosexual, involving no adults whatsoever - is treated as intrinsically and inescapably injurious and even criminal.  

(I would deeply appreciate somebody explaining how this, too, isn't insane, but what the heck....)

I would charitably leave aside for the moment the understanding that sams' insistence "that Children become adults around 18 years old" is also quite insane, but his insanity is of a piece with that of the sociocultural traditionalist "conservative" pathology which people would be striving to escape when relocating to Ceres and the Belt in the Escape From Terra plenum.  

From the standpoints of the biologist and the obstetrician, the condition of physical maturity is said to have been achieved when the organism in question has become capable of fecundative reproductive activity.  In males, that doesn't necessarily mean spermarche (the time at which spermatozoa can be detected in the ejaculate) because without in vitro artifice there is little real chance of viable impregnation, but it's not long thereafter that a male become capable of getting himself offspring.

Under present conditions of nutrition and hygiene, spermarche most commonly occurs between the ages of 11 and 15 years.  

Anybody else reading here know men who have wound up paying child support as the result of sexual activities they enjoyed while they were in junior high school?  I certainly do.  

On the female side, the ability to reproduce - and the liability that they will get pregnant - also develops well before physical growth to full adult stature has been attained.  In pre-industrial cultures throughout human history, where the prospects of infant survival have always tended to be poor, the commencement of baby-making has always come very early in a woman's life, and there are definitely reasons why even in statute law today, the official sanction of marriage (explicitly for the purpose of reproduction) is not uncommonly accorded women at ages as low as ten or eleven.  

On both sides, therefore, sams is blowing it out his ass when he insists "that Children become adults around 18 years old."  Like any other insane person, sams is indulging his neuroses - or like any other idiot, he's displaying his uncritical buy-in of currently prevailing bigotries - as if either these neuroses or bigotries have anything to do with objective reality.

In this forum, there's been much discussion of how an AnCap society not only does not impose upon effective voluntary human action (of which even children in the first decade of life are capable) in the name of "ending child labor" those impediments which criminalize the greatest part of young people's efforts to work for payment, but also how the economy of Ceres and the rest of the Belt is quite capable of enabling children and adolescents to earn monetary compensation for the production of goods and the performance of services of real material value.  

Bear in mind that we're seeing industrial and other economic activities being undertaken in microgravity, where adult male stature and muscularity are not necessary for most work, and any such requirement can be "engineered out" when it's expedient to do so.  This is what enables women to compete with men here on Terra today, right? How could the same not prevail in the high-technology civilization and intrinsically labor-poor economy of the Belt as depicted?  

Okay.  In the AnCap society of Ceres and the Belt, we've got technological sophistication and an economy that is extremely wealthy in material terms (which latter fact is the reason why the U.W. is intent upon the plunder and enslavement of this population).  

No government thieving away seven-eighths of whatever value is earned by the sweat of the private citizen's brow, remember.  So if sams and the other statists are contending that a child in normal health at age nine or ten can't grind out better than the equivalent of about one-eighth of the productive effort exerted by the average adult person in the course of gainful employment in these United States today, they're yet again blowing it out their asses.  

A kid - even one of tenderer years than those of Babette the Younger as she first presented in Escape From Terra - would be eminently capable of setting up wholly independent housekeeping on Ceres should he/she desire to do so.  

And just who would keep such a child from cohabiting with whoever he/she might desire, adult or not, with or without sexual "privileges" involved?  

The suppositions of sams regarding parents exerting their property rights in the physical bodies of their offspring by murdering or mutilating adults with whom those children had chosen voluntarily to engage in sexual activity (much less going Dutch with 'em on bed and board) are the indulgences of an idiot, particularly in an AnCap social setting.  

It is economically unnecessary for anyone - child or adult - to be treated as property under such circumstances, and where necessity does not drive, customs have no purpose and therefore no force.  sams' brain is working on way outdated software.  

But with regard to the sexual appetites and practices of NAMBLA members - of all ages - there is, strictly speaking, no possibility whatsoever of unwanted pregnancies.  We're talking about homosexual liaisons among males, some of whom are below the locally prevailing "age of consent," however such an age is arbitrarily set.  

It being understood that "age of consent" is an idiot legal fiction (as I've mentioned, there are boatloads of American men who have spent decades of their lives paying child support for pregnancies they'd unintentionally fathered when they themselves were "legal infants" and incapable of even entering upon the marriage contract), is there something about sexual contact - heterosexual or homosexual - which is intrinsically so damaging or dangerous that there is any justification for prohibition?  Or, indeed, for any kind of disapproval on the part of anybody, including the participants' relatives?

I'd like to see sams and his social/traditionalist "conservative" co-religionists make a logically supported case to the effect that the criminalization of man-boy sexual activities (or the less formal violent aggressions perpetrated against what he likes to call the "NAMBLOID" folk) is justified by actual objectively demonstrated harm done to anyone involved in such activities.

I don't think they'd even dare to try.
« Last Edit: April 27, 2011, 03:26:40 pm by Tucci78 »
"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)

Aardvark on April 27, 2011, 04:22:16 pm
Quote
J Thomas: But I don't quite understand what you think is going on. Is it that 10% to 15% of EU farmers are criminals who illegally do whatever they think will make money faster? But 100% of US farmers do what they think is best for the final consumers?

Here's the issue: The FDA has determined that certain steroids are safe and only produce harmless non-steroid compounds in beef that are easily digested. From what I can tell, the EU doesn't have any evidence that US approved steroids cause any problems in beef, but ban US beef anyway. It's probably an excuse for protectionism. Europe doesn't have the wide open spaces and efficient grain farms the US has to feed the cattle with. Like European wheat and other grain, they likely can't compete with US beef without heavy subsidies. They certainly don't want cheap US beef entering their markets and ruining their beef industry.

The EU is concerned about steroids excreted by steroid-fed animals filtering down to the water supply. Steroids have a fairly short half-life, but they believe that they could be a potential health problem for wildlife that live in and drink from streams, and possibly to human beings. Still, if that is a risk, the production of steroid-fed beef would be a risk to US residents, not to anyone in the EU, so that issue doesn't have anything to do with how healthy US beef is.

Quote
J Thomas: Well, of course it's predictable that either farmer will do whatever gets him the best profit. If a bad steroid works better than a good steroid, he'll use it if he can get away with it. If he's supposed to stop using the steroids for a period before sale but continued use results in more money, he'll keep using it.

There aren't that many US approved steroids, but they are cheap, so there's little reason to cheat and use illegal ones. IIRC, about $3 of steroids produces $40 of extra beef. The EU, however, bans all steroids in their cattle, so the farmers use whatever is handy, which include some steroids that leave harmful byproducts in beef. Testing for a wide range of steroids is time consuming and quite expensive, so I'm sure it's difficult for the EU to inspect for steroids.

Quote
J Thomas: Unless there are adequate inspections. Like they say in the Navy, "If it isn't inspected, it's neglected.".

In any system, if you can't tell whether you're being cheated, you probably are. Unless you can trust your sellers to do the right thing whether anybody finds out or not.

Your level of pessimism continues to amaze me, but here you probably have a point. If so much EU beef uses steroids, then I have to wonder if the EU is more concerned with its subjects' health or its market share. Still, inspection processes vary. You likely have no idea what the US beef industry has to go through to sell beef to Japan.

Here's the article I was referring to:

http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m1200/is_1_161/ai_82512511/
« Last Edit: April 27, 2011, 04:49:28 pm by Aardvark »

quadibloc on April 27, 2011, 04:23:59 pm
is there something about sexual contact - heterosexual or homosexual - which is intrinsically so damaging or dangerous that there is any justification for prohibition?
In the world we currently live in, contraception isn't perfect, and there is no cure for AIDS.

Sexual desire is a strong motivating force for humans.

Another thing we don't have is rejuvenative medicine. So people grow old, and sometimes they need to have someone look after their affairs for them. Because money is a strong motivating factor for people, it isn't considered odd that there is oversight when someone signs over a power of attorney in a case like that.

Does sex hurt people?

That's not really the right question.

Because sexual relationships are emotionally intense, sexual exploitation can indeed hurt people very much. The psychological problems experienced by many victims of sexual exploitation have been well-documented.

That this may be in part due to certain cultural baggage, some of which comes from historical religious sources, with which sexual activity has been freighted... is simply irrelevant. Using that to discount the harm is blaming the victim.

Protecting young adolescents from being the victims of predatory older males is a legitimate goal, and if it may seem inconsistent on a principled basis to do so while not criminalizing natural youthful sexual experimentation, I'm not sure that should be a major concern.

sams on April 27, 2011, 04:32:14 pm
You are either being a moron, so willing to have ''Online debate smack down'' orgasm that you are fucking confounding me with some else.

No fucking address my points or go get some fucking blow job and stop fantasying has Champion of liberty in a forum ... especially when you are behaving like a moron.

On the subject at hand, I for once think that a An-Cap society would be more conservative, especially since the cost of recklessness won't be shifted to somebody else through benefits et al.

The cost has to carried either by the Parents or they are unwilling the youngster would had bear it by becoming an adult working et al.

sams' fixation on "cost" here is particularly senseless, making it plain that he has no more real understanding of economics than he has of any other aspect of purposeful human action.  

One aspect of the authors' posited setting in this graphic novel which seems to have escaped sams' understanding completely is that in an AnCap society, there is no government operating to thieve away the value of productive human effort.  

Let's assume that sams doesn't know (or is neurotically thought-blocking on the appreciation) that civil government in most present-day polities - and particularly in these United States - deprives the private citizen of seven-eighths (at a "conservative" estimate) of the transfer value he/she generates in all remunerative transactions.

And this says nothing about the direct and indirect costs of government "winner-picking" economic regulations, the greatest number of which have not even the most tenuous fictional pretense of "consumer protection."  

"Government services" rendered - it is laughably contended that these come "in return" for the taxes and regulations imposed involuntarily upon the victims - never equal the value of what is taken, nor do they compensate the mulcted private person for the opportunity costs of which he/she is deprived as his/her resources are thieved away.  Even were the machinery of civil government not glaringly inefficient in itself, "Taxation is not levied for the benefit of the taxed."

I think it safe to conclude that sams is using the term "conservative" in the sense that characterizes the modern Anglophone political social/traditional "conservative," a statist authoritarian desirous of using government thugs aggressively to suppress those of his/her neighbors' speech and actions which disquiet said "conservative" person's neurotic sense of propriety.

Y'know.  The kind of cement-head who insists upon figleafing the genitalia on statuary because the sight of a putto's pudenda might cause naughty thoughts.  

With it being understood that these people are insane, and that sams is emphatically not talking about the economic aspects of political conservatism when he uses the term "conservative," let us ask whether or not the people in an AnCap society would necessarily demonstrate this kind of insanity.  

Indeed, granted better economic conditions than obtain in our present highly-taxed (a seven-eighths rip-off, remember) and viciously "regulated" polities, would there be any economic incentives which could or would cause the people of Ceres and the Belt - whatever "arrangement for living" they might devise in terms of the getting and nurturing of offspring - to be as sexually tight-assed as sams keeps on senselessly insisting they'd be?

Under economic conditions of scarcity, where the material welfare of the private person is constantly degraded by government depredations and government suppression of productive enterprise, the margins of survival are such that people will tend to constrain their reproductive activities so as to reduce exposure to potential adversity.  Denied access to contraceptive means, they'll try to keep down the costs associated with raising offspring by reducing fecundative sexual activity.

This isn't sociocultural.  It's economic.  It simply gains sociocultural (including religious) coloration as a matter of custom.  Remove the economic constraints - as we'd see in the materially wealthy AnCap society of the Asteroid Belt in the context of Escape From Terra - and the "conservative" bullshit that sams keeps peddling will most assuredly disappear.

Now, let's look at what's really crawled up sams' urethra to inflame his bladder.

I find the somewhat pro-NAMBLA tone disturbing, especially since it is mixed with Stephane Molineux/Bork nonsense concerning children. The truth is that Children become adults around 18 years old and before that they don't have the mental capacity to consent or make certain choices ...

Since there was never a society where it was socially acceptable to let your kids with a sexual freak, I bet NAMBLOID caught would get in a hell of problem, has the children guardians can castrate him. I find it a great flaw of AnCap to say that ''children are free'' will at the same time blidning themselves to the fact that same children don't have the mental, emotional and personal capacity to make most choices.

For the purpose of clarity, NAMBLA is an acronym for "North American Man-Boy Love Association," a group which first aggregated sometime in the 1970s to make the case for the decriminalization of consenting sexual relationships between males regardless of age.  

Bear in mind that in most Anglophone jurisdictions today, voluntary sexual contact between minor children - male or female, heterosexual or homosexual, involving no adults whatsoever - is treated as intrinsically and inescapably injurious and even criminal.  

(I would deeply appreciate somebody explaining how this, too, isn't insane, but what the heck....)

I would charitably leave aside for the moment the understanding that sams' insistence "that Children become adults around 18 years old" is also quite insane, but his insanity is of a piece with that of the sociocultural traditionalist "conservative" pathology which people would be striving to escape when relocating to Ceres and the Belt in the Escape From Terra plenum.  

From the standpoints of the biologist and the obstetrician, the condition of physical maturity is said to have been achieved when the organism in question has become capable of fecundative reproductive activity.  In males, that doesn't necessarily mean spermarche (the time at which spermatozoa can be detected in the ejaculate) because without in vitro artifice there is little real chance of viable impregnation, but it's not long thereafter that a male become capable of getting himself offspring.

Under present conditions of nutrition and hygiene, spermarche most commonly occurs between the ages of 11 and 15 years.  

Anybody else reading here know men who have wound up paying child support as the result of sexual activities they enjoyed while they were in junior high school?  I certainly do.  

On the female side, the ability to reproduce - and the liability that they will get pregnant - also develops well before physical growth to full adult stature has been attained.  In pre-industrial cultures throughout human history, where the prospects of infant survival have always tended to be poor, the commencement of baby-making has always come very early in a woman's life, and there are definitely reasons why even in statute law today, the official sanction of marriage (explicitly for the purpose of reproduction) is not uncommonly accorded women at ages as low as ten or eleven.  

On both sides, therefore, sams is blowing it out his ass when he insists "that Children become adults around 18 years old."  Like any other insane person, sams is indulging his neuroses - or like any other idiot, he's displaying his uncritical buy-in of currently prevailing bigotries - as if either these neuroses or bigotries have anything to do with objective reality.

In this forum, there's been much discussion of how an AnCap society not only does not impose upon effective voluntary human action (of which even children in the first decade of life are capable) in the name of "ending child labor" those impediments which criminalize the greatest part of young people's efforts to work for payment, but also how the economy of Ceres and the rest of the Belt is quite capable of enabling children and adolescents to earn monetary compensation for the production of goods and the performance of services of real material value.  

Bear in mind that we're seeing industrial and other economic activities being undertaken in microgravity, where adult male stature and muscularity are not necessary for most work, and any such requirement can be "engineered out" when it's expedient to do so.  This is what enables women to compete with men here on Terra today, right? How could the same not prevail in the high-technology civilization and intrinsically labor-poor economy of the Belt as depicted?  

Okay.  In the AnCap society of Ceres and the Belt, we've got technological sophistication and an economy that is extremely wealthy in material terms (which latter fact is the reason why the U.W. is intent upon the plunder and enslavement of this population).  

No government thieving away seven-eighths of whatever value is earned by the sweat of the private citizen's brow, remember.  So if sams and the other statists are contending that a child in normal health at age nine or ten can't grind out better than the equivalent of about one-eighth of the productive effort exerted by the average adult person in the course of gainful employment in these United States today, they're yet again blowing it out their asses.  

A kid - even one of tenderer years than those of Babette the Younger as she first presented in Escape From Terra - would be eminently capable of setting up wholly independent housekeeping on Ceres should he/she desire to do so.  

And just who would keep such a child from cohabiting with whoever he/she might desire, adult or not, with or without sexual "privileges" involved?  

The suppositions of sams regarding parents exerting their property rights in the physical bodies of their offspring by murdering or mutilating adults with whom those children had chosen voluntarily to engage in sexual activity (much less going Dutch with 'em on bed and board) are the indulgences of an idiot, particularly in an AnCap social setting.  

It is economically unnecessary for anyone - child or adult - to be treated as property under such circumstances, and where necessity does not drive, customs have no purpose and therefore no force.  sams' brain is working on way outdated software.  

But with regard to the sexual appetites and practices of NAMBLA members - of all ages - there is, strictly speaking, no possibility whatsoever of unwanted pregnancies.  We're talking about homosexual liaisons among males, some of whom are below the locally prevailing "age of consent," however such an age is arbitrarily set.  

It being understood that "age of consent" is an idiot legal fiction (as I've mentioned, there are boatloads of American men who have spent decades of their lives paying child support for pregnancies they'd unintentionally fathered when they themselves were "legal infants" and incapable of even entering upon the marriage contract), is there something about sexual contact - heterosexual or homosexual - which is intrinsically so damaging or dangerous that there is any justification for prohibition?  Or, indeed, for any kind of disapproval on the part of anybody, including the participants' relatives?

I'd like to see sams and his social/traditionalist "conservative" co-religionists make a logically supported case to the effect that the criminalization of man-boy sexual activities (or the less formal violent aggressions perpetrated against what he likes to call the "NAMBLOID" folk) is justified by actual objectively demonstrated harm done to anyone involved in such activities.

I don't think they'd even dare to try.

Holt on April 27, 2011, 04:36:24 pm

The EU is concerned about the steroids excreted by steroid-fed animals filtering down to the water supply. Steroids have a fairly short half-life, but they believe that it could be a potential health problem for wildlife that live in and drink from streams, and possibly to human beings. Still, if that is a risk, it would be a risk to US residents, not to anyone in the EU.


Plus any unforeseen effects they may have on humans.
It might be what causes Americans to be so....depry

J Thomas on April 27, 2011, 05:04:55 pm

Let's assume that sams doesn't know (or is neurotically thought-blocking on the appreciation) that civil government in most present-day polities - and particularly in these United States - deprives the private citizen of seven-eighths (at a "conservative" estimate) of the transfer value he/she generates in all remunerative transactions.

I didn't know that. When I think about it, it feels like about the right number. But it looks like something that would be extremely hard to measure accurately.

First there's the problem of opportunity costs. Say the government hires 50% of the workforce, and pays them to do things which have no economic return. If they could work for private industry and produce just as much as the other 50%, then the government is reducing production by 50% right there. But there's no particular reason to think that production would double without that. Some of the people who go into nonproductive government service would be doing that because they are generally incompetent and can't do productive work. And the work that is getting done already ought to be the most productive work, by the law of diminishing returns the work that doesn't get done because there aren't enough workers, should be the least productive work. So it's hard to figure how much is lost this way.

Second, there's the problem of attribution of production. Say my job is to come up with advertising jingles that are supposed to increase sales. Success means that people who otherwise would buy something else buy my company's product instead, a zero-sum game. How do we measure my "production"? By my salary? When people get into giant corporations a lot of what they do is wasted -- higher management gets into spats among themselves and try to cause waste which they plan will be blamed on their enemies, etc. We can get by that somewhat by measuring output and ignoring who produced it. But it's so easy to get that wrong. If my company's product gets a 10% premium price because my advertising jingle is better, did that jingle actually increase production by 10%? Etc. And it's hard to measure all the outputs. If my vodka production results in a 5% increase in expensive automobile accidents, did I produce those? If I didn't do it somebody else would, but that applies to everything else I produce too....

Then there's the multiplier effect. This is subtle, and some people claim there's no such thing. Imagine that all the consumer goods and stuff that people actually want, is in one big pile. Everybody gets to take stuff from that pile according to how much anybody-who-pays-them thinks their contribution is worth. Now here's a government employee who hasn't actually contributed anything, but the government paid him and he gets to take from the pile. That accounts for 40% or so that the government is taking, right there. Now here comes an employee of a private business. His employer does nothing but make bombs for the government, which the government one way or another will waste. He didn't contribute to the pile of consumer goods. He only contributed to government, like the government employee. Then another private business employee comes to take from the pile, and by a magical sleight of hand it turns out that he made consumer goods, but the consumer goods his business made were only bought by government employees and government contractors and their employees. How much does he really deserve to take from the pile, when everything he added to it has already been claimed by government wastrels? If you keep adding it up this way, it's easy to get government taking 87% or more. But it's hard to actually measure it.

I think your factoid is probably about right. In the bad old days governments didn't take more than about maybe 10%, with the church taking another 10%, because if they took more the peasants would starve and there would be less to take next year. But now that we are so extremely productive, government can take more and more without actually starving out the people who produce the wealth. I think you're about right but I'd have a hell of a time proving it. And it wouldn't be the kind of evidence that would convince anybody who wanted not to believe it.

mellyrn on April 27, 2011, 05:19:31 pm
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The psychological problems experienced by many victims of sexual exploitation have been well-documented.

That this may be in part due to certain cultural baggage, some of which comes from historical religious sources, with which sexual activity has been freighted... is simply irrelevant. Using that to discount the harm is blaming the victim.

"Documented" mostly by people with a cultural axe to grind.  It's hard to buck the cultural norms, which is why real science is really damned hard.  Still, it does happen.

I read a study -- German, I believe -- involving some 3000+ "children" (some quite young), who had experienced sexual events ranging from merely being "flashed" to being violently raped.  Where the sexual event was consensual, and yet trauma ensued, the source of the trauma was found in the reaction of the adults around the event:  parents, police, therapists.  Apparently what happened in the child's mind was, "I liked that.  But Mom and Dad are freaking out, and there were police, and I'm having to see this very serious and solemn shrink, so it must have been a bad thing.  But I liked it.  I liked a bad thing.  I must be bad."

We're sexual beings.  Evolution long ago weeded out any of us that couldn't deal with it, and there is an evolutionarily-necessary reason why it is pleasurable. There is nothing INTRINSIC to sex that is harmful or dangerous -- or we'd have died out.  What, specifically, happens overnight on one's eighteenth birthday that turns sex from a trauma into a treat?  Do you really think that if we're taught for 18 years that it's so dangerous that children, who may watch all the murders they like, must not even see a whisper of it, nonetheless on our 18th birthdays we'll suddenly healthily accept it as one of life's more joyful responsibilities?

The cultural aspects will mean more to new arrivals on Ceres than to the native born.

Holt on April 27, 2011, 05:55:14 pm
And now the anarchists endorse child molestation and/or rape.


J Thomas on April 27, 2011, 06:01:36 pm
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J Thomas: But I don't quite understand what you think is going on. Is it that 10% to 15% of EU farmers are criminals who illegally do whatever they think will make money faster? But 100% of US farmers do what they think is best for the final consumers?

Here's the issue: The FDA has determined that certain steroids are safe and only produce harmless non-steroid compounds in beef that are easily digested.

I see. You trust the FDA about this. "The FDA has determined that certain steroids are safe".

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From what I can tell, the EU doesn't have any evidence that US approved steroids cause any problems in beef, but ban US beef anyway.

It sounds like they don't completely trust the FDA determination.

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It's probably an excuse for protectionism.

Sure, EU government science tends to go along with EU government policy. US government science, now....

I have known some FDA scientists and I tended to trust them. They got upset when their results were delayed for unknown reasons.

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The EU is concerned about steroids excreted by steroid-fed animals filtering down to the water supply. Steroids have a fairly short half-life, but they believe that they could be a potential health problem for wildlife that live in and drink from streams, and possibly to human beings. Still, if that is a risk, the production of steroid-fed beef would be a risk to US residents, not to anyone in the EU, so that issue doesn't have anything to do with how healthy US beef is.

It would have a whole lot to do with whether EU should legalize synthetic steroids for beef.

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J Thomas: Well, of course it's predictable that either farmer will do whatever gets him the best profit. If a bad steroid works better than a good steroid, he'll use it if he can get away with it. If he's supposed to stop using the steroids for a period before sale but continued use results in more money, he'll keep using it.

There aren't that many US approved steroids, but they are cheap, so there's little reason to cheat and use illegal ones.

Unless the illegal ones work better, in the sense of being more profitable.

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IIRC, about $3 of steroids produces $40 of extra beef. The EU, however, bans all steroids in their cattle, so the farmers use whatever is handy, which include some steroids that leave harmful byproducts in beef. Testing for a wide range of steroids is time consuming and quite expensive, so I'm sure it's difficult for the EU to inspect for steroids.

Thank you for the Business Network link, which had extensive references to Science News.

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A "defensible overall estimate for the use of these compounds in the European Union, based on results from annual regulatory residue-testing programs, could be in the range of 5 to 15 percent" of beef cattle

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Moreover, he notes, because all such drug treatment in Europe is illegal, illicit users tend to employ whatever is available and affordable. Residues of at least 35 such drugs have been found in meat samples. This complicates screening, Stephany observes, since an investigator never knows quite what to look for and each assay can cost as much as a cow's entire carcass is worth. This situation contrasts sharply with that in the United States, where drug residues in meat invariably consist of one or more of only six FDA-approved growth promoters, he says.

I haven't looked at this issue at all until now, so I'm winging it. When EU investigators never know quite what to look for and random testing is very expensive, how does he know that US cows never have any unusual steroids? This is the sort of thing that people will tend to assume and therefore not test.

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J Thomas: Unless there are adequate inspections. Like they say in the Navy, "If it isn't inspected, it's neglected.".

In any system, if you can't tell whether you're being cheated, you probably are. Unless you can trust your sellers to do the right thing whether anybody finds out or not.

Your level of pessimism continues to amaze me, but here you probably have a point. If so much EU beef uses steroids, then I have to wonder if the EU is more concerned with its subjects' health or its market share. Still, inspection processes vary. You likely have no idea what the US beef industry has to go through to sell beef to Japan.

I've heard some about that. They definitely don't want our beef.

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http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m1200/is_1_161/ai_82512511/

That article is very understandable and clear, and I haven't checked how much it misrepresents. They find detectable results from steroids in runoff, but they have not at all tested whether those detectable results actually matter much. That would be much harder to do. Also, if it makes an important difference to river fish, that doesn't mean it is important to human beings. We are much larger and we grow much slower. There is no real proof that it is dangerous to human beings. If it would cause too much economic dislocation to do something about this potential problem just-in-case, perhaps we should decide that more study is required and start multi-generational studies to decide whether it's really important. Then in a couple of hundred years we might know for sure whether it's really a problem that requires some sort of solution. And if in that time the US population hasn't suffered extremely serious effects, we can assume that there was not a problem and everything's fine.

In short, if it costs agribusiness too much money to actually do anything about it, we can give it the climate-change treatment.

Rorschach on April 27, 2011, 06:26:54 pm
*/+-*-+I think the "major issue" with AnCap is labeling, and that issue hasn't been solved n any major country to my knowledge. I'm willing to let the market decide if dolphins are killed with tuna IF there is accurate labeling on which tuna kills dolphin and which is dolphin-safe. Unfortunately, accurate labeling is against the World Trade Organization because the labels create an unfair trade advantage. It is the stance of the WTO that labels are a protectionist methodology, and in a "fair" market all people should be unrestricted on what labels they can use.

My granola doesn't list soy as an ingredient, but I pull out whole soybeans. The label is simply wrong. AnCap needs enforcement of a few minor things: labels, ingredients, etc. Now I'm not proposing a govt regulation that tests all products (too easily biased anyway) but rather independent testing with automatic consequences. The rule of force would apply only when violations are committed. Force would only be applied if a farmer or business lies in excess of their ability to pay the fines.

Rorschach on April 27, 2011, 06:32:20 pm
And now the anarchists endorse child molestation and/or rape.
Well to be fair, there was a dirty tactic implemented. Any topic can be skewed these days with a improper derailment to be about child rape. It is arguing for the sake of arguing, and has no bearing usually on the topic at hand.

I do note there is a weird sort of pattern here though. In the US you are irresponsible by not using a condom. In Mexico you have committed a Cardinal Sin and you soul is damned to hell for using a condom. In the US any attraction to anyone under the age of 18 or 16  means you have deep psychological issues depending on what state you live in. Cross a state line, and attraction to the same person is now illegal and you become a menace to society. On the other hand, a girl younger than that is an eligible bride in Mexico.

I'd rather debate the condom issue, and they are equivalent arguments in our society.