Monday, April 28, 2008

Students are still morons shock!

In May, the UK Libertarian Party has been invited to engage in a debate at the political society of Trinity College, Oxford. Ahead of that, the student paper, Cherwell, has published an article on the party's policies.

Which is, of course, all very well except that it demonstrates just how pissing ignorant students are, even at our "top" universities. And so, since they have fired the opening salvo, I feel duty-bound to reply (oh, and it is a pleasure too).

Let us take the first idiot into our stride, shall we?
Guy Levin, President of OUCA, said, “I’m looking forward to the visit, and I’m sure it will be of interest to some of OUCA’s members.

“Regardless, I think that a vote for the Libertarian Party is a wasted vote. Those who agree with broadly libertarian principles of lower taxation and less state interference would be best served by a Conservative government."

You are, Guy, without doubt, a fucking moron. Those who believe in "lower taxation and less state interference" might be better served by a Conservative government, but not even tribalist fools like The Dude think that those desiring "broadly libertarian principles" will be best served by a Tory government.

The Tories have absolutely committed themselves against tax cuts and not a single one of their policies advocates less government on any level.

The Tories have absolutely committed themselves to remaining within the EU; one of the singularly most damaging entities on the planet. Further, since the EU controls a significant amount of our legislation, a goodly amount of things that the Tories are promising are simply not possible.

Furthermore, libertarianism is about both economic and social freedom and if you think that the Tories are pro the latter, then you are so stupid that you should never open your mouth ever again.

Now, you may believe that the Tories are the only other party that has a chance of getting into power, but that is an entirely different argument. After all, if all of the people that I know personally who hold their nose whilst voting for the Conservatives actually voted for a party that they believed in, then so-called minor parties might have a better chance of getting anywhere.
“I personally disagree with many of the Libertarian Party’s proposed policies, such as the total abolition of income taxes...

Why? Do you think that this tax—which was introduced to fight the Napoleonic Wars—is in some way morally right? Or is it that you are so used to the idea that you will happily grant the government access to your intimate earning detail because... well... that's just what one does?

Let me quote the Adam Smith Institute again, if I may.
If the government sector had grown only in line with inflation, rather than far above it, taxpayers would be £200 billion better off – enough to abolish income tax, corporation tax, capital gains tax and inheritance tax.

But hey! Guy's only a student: I don't expect him actually to look up any figures. He's at Oxford, you know, and Oxford students are just the cleverest, most well-informed chaps in the entire country, don'cha know (they aren't. That was sarcasm. I've known too many of them to believe that shit. It's a great pity that they all seem to believe it).
... the NHS...

Because that's just great isn't it? Ten times more deaths from C. difficile than any other country on the world and 17,000 people a year dead, unnecessarily, because you support a state monopoly. I hope that you fucking pray for forgiveness for supporting the unnecessary deaths, of 47 people a day, every fucking night, sunshine.

And I hope that your god forgives you, because I won't.
... and state pensions,” he added.

Riiiight. Because state pensions are just the absolute best, aren't they? Anyone remember the desultory rise of a few years ago? What was it: 75p a week? Nice one.

As I have consistently pointed out, NICs is not only a Ponzi scheme con but also costs more than twice as much as comparable private schemes: but then, students wouldn't know anything about that, would they?
Another Oxford student, who describes himself as a Liberal Democrat, said, “From their website, the Libertarian Party’s main policy seems to be abolishing income tax. That’s just infeasible in the modern era. They don’t offer any realistic solutions or projected figures. To me, their income tax policy seems irrational and ridiculous.

Of course it does, my poppet; but that is why we are coming to speak to you. Because, you see, we have actually done the number-crunching and we know what we can afford. Unlike you, you see, we have actually trawled through the government's spending figures and we know, pretty much, where everything is spent.
“If they are coming to Oxford to talk about their policies, I’m sure any audience would tear them to pieces.”

Oh, I'm looking forward to it: believe me. We are going to shake up your comfortable, middle-class, dissociated-from-the-grunts assumptions and your nice, social democrat lives. We are going to quote figures that you have never heard of; we are going to show you why your policies are not merely wrong-headed but actively evil.

We are going to pull you fuckers to pieces and if just a few of you go away and contemplate what you have heard, then we will consider it a victory.
Martin Nelson, President of the Oxford University Liberal Democrats criticised the party ‘s policy line on the grounds that its practical application was too inflexible.

He argued, “Real freedom of choice depends upon the economic situation in which you find yourself. We simply do not think that you can take a policy [of libertarianism] and extend it to every situation.”

Bollocks. Either you are free to make your own choices or you are not. How many on The Times rich list are from humble backgrouds? Did they assume that they could never become multi-millionaires?

Now, I'm aware that it might be difficult to explain the problems of the poverty trap to a bunch of middle-class student wankers who assume that, because they are at Oxford, they are the creme de la creme, but we shall do our very best.

Whatever people might think, we are not about supporting the rich but about giving the poor the opportunity to shine. We are not about holding people back, but about giving everyone the chance to be great.

That the middle- and upper-class pricks of Oxford should disagree with this aim is not surprising, but it should be challenged.

UPDATE: it has been pointed out to me that I may have been a little harsh with these young student types, and possibly that is the case.

However, what it is indicative of is the unthinking, knee-jerk statist attitude of the young (and it is distressingly prevalent in the not-so-young too); we can't do x because... because... well, we just can't.

[stamps foot]

Seriously, I did rather hope that there might be a little more contemplation from Oxford students. But no, apparently the audience will "tear [us] to pieces". We shall see...

74 comments:

Anonymous said...

Will this debate be available in video (or at least audio) in some form through The Kitchen?

I for one would spread that link far and wide.

lettersfromatory said...

"The Tories have absolutely committed themselves against tax cuts and not a single one of their policies advocates less government on any level."

Wrong. The Conservatives are apparently sticking with Brown's spending plans until the general election, after which they are clearly going to start chopping away at the unnecessary waste.

And if you think that handing the NHS over to an independent board and taking schools out of local authority and central government control (to name but two) are anything other than reducing government interference, you are mistaken.

Anonymous Coward said...

"The Conservatives are apparently sticking with Brown's spending plans until the general election, after which they are clearly going to start chopping away at the unnecessary waste."

Too late. It's not my job to have faith in your party, it's your party's job to convince me of their ability to govern. This they have not done, ergo I will not vote for them.

JonnyB said...

Little tiny chop here... little tiny chop there...

Guthrum said...

Dont hold back ;-)

the a&e charge nurse said...

Devil - your assertion that 17,000 die because of a 'state monopoly' is not even supported by the TAX PAYERS ALLIANCE, the POLITICAL LOBBYISTS who commissioned the study you refer to.

First of all 'mortality amenable to healthcare' is a GUESTIMATE not a record of actual deaths.
And even the TPA acknowledge that health services are only one factor determining outcome (in this case mortality) - and not always the most important one at that.

For example, those with a lifetime addiction to fags and booze (in other words a fair proportion of yer typical Brits) will do less well compared to to their healthier european counterparts when they develop cancer and heart disease.
The burgeoning rate of obese Brits also results in significant co-morbidity, of course.

I know how much importance you attach to 'personal responsibility' - in fact, I 'm rather surprised that you are not jumping and down for joy claiming they got exactly what they deserved for being such morons in the first place ?

Incidentally, Nolte & McKee (contributors to the TPA amenable mortality calculations) claim that over 100,000 deaths could have been prevented in the USA if we accept their guestimates, sorry, methods.
http://content.healthaffairs.org/cgi/content/abstract/27/1/58

Roger Thornhill said...

Dear letters,

The NHS "Board" will not resolve the key issues with the NHS. First, it is a State-enforced monopoly. Second, it suffers from Third Party Payer syndrome, whereby those in its employ do not consider the patients as their true customers - as in people who can leave and refuse to come back if service is substandard - but they consider the State to be their paymasters. The Board will be suspect. Who is to sit on it? What will their "line" be? Who decides on re-appointment? The leash will be connected and all vested interests will lobby and scratch tooth an nail to get "their man/woman"'s bum on a seat. Corruption corruption.

As for schools, the Tories want to control where new schools will be formed, so any real freedom has gone, in fact it will likely descend into a grotesque round of lobbying and risks corruption at all levels. Councils will waste precious energy trying to "win over" the grandees so they get more "other peoples money" to "allow" schools to form. Bonkers. Vouchers are not enough. You need ALL schools to be able to opt out of LEA control and ALL areas to be open to new schools formed from any quarter.

Mark Wadsworth said...

Nice one. You'd be mad not to agree that we'd be better served by a Tory government (compared to the current shower of shite) but no way would we be best served. Comparative not superlative, don't these Oxford students learn grammar and logic any more? Or anything at all, come to that.

Ordovicius said...

Thanks, I enjoyed that.

don't these Oxford students learn grammar and logic any more? Or anything at all, come to that.

At the end of the day Oxford students are like any other students in the UK: They get pissed, talk shite and leave studying to the night before the essay has to be handed in

the a&e charge nurse said...

Sorry, Roger you are talking shit, at least in your incredibly stoopid assertion that NHS staff do not regard patients as their "true customers" (whatever the fuck that means).

I can tell you that it is very real when a patient is in front of you gasping for breath, or crying in pain (because they have fractured a hip, or been stabbed).

The NHS has a percentage of poor staff like any other organisation, but I can honestly say that the MAJORITY I have worked with are dedicated and conscientious, and try to do the best within the constraints of endless government reforms.

Do you honestly think docs/nurses will become more dedicated to "customers" because pressure is put on them by an insurance company, say ?
Of course they won't, they will simply develop the sort of platitudes that permeate organisations such as McDonalds.

Attitudes are caught, not taught.

laurence said...

Whilst agreeing in general with your sentiments and especially with your assessment of the majority of Oxford students, may I just point out that in fact more than half these days come from state schools and not necessarily middle-class backgrounds. (They have to, as the University is being blackmailed by NuLabour into applying quotas while pretending not to). This is actually worse, of course, because they have mostly been 'educated' by brain-dead left-wing members of the NUT and therefore know nothing about anything useful at all but are well up on 'political correctness', 'multiculturalism', 'diversity awareness', the wickedness of capitalism and the profound evil of anyone who dares to disagree with a Marxist view of the universe!
Mr. Hughes.

Anonymous said...

This is obviously something about which we all feel very deeply and which we treat with appropriate seriousness.

However there is one salient thing that has been ignored not only by the critics of Libertarianism but by the Libertarians themselves. Irrespective of your political leanings, we must all accept the very cold, very hard reality that tomorrow, April 29th, Grand Theft Auto IV is released.

GTA IV = Epic Win. Until you're ready to accept that, it's going to be very difficult to have an adult debate about, frankly, much of anything.

Richard said...

"Incidentally, Nolte & McKee (contributors to the TPA amenable mortality calculations) claim that over 100,000 deaths could have been prevented in the USA if we accept their guestimates, sorry, methods."

Whose side are you on? The US has the most statist healthcare system in the world (public spending as a %age of GDP). Why should it be surprising that its mortality rate is comparable to ours (slightly higher) as a percentage of the population?

Richard said...

Oh yeah, and you forgot to tell us when it is!

the A&E Charge Nurse said...

Nolte & McKee published in 2008 although their findings were based on data obtained 1998-2003
(Health Affairs. 27: no1 p58-71) - see link above.

The USA is more 'state-ist' than the NHS ?

Well their health market(s) may be regulated, but it is hardly monolithic - and it is this lack of plurality that causes all of our problems (if we accept libertarian ideology).

I was merely highlighting the fallacy of this position, at least when we look at some of the stats on hospital acquired infections and preventable mortality, not to mention expense (to cite just x3 examples) emanating from our American cousins.

Old Holborn - bitter and twisted said...

I'm going to join the LPUK

As soon as they get their bastard website FIXED.

Andrew Roocroft said...

Will you personally be speaking, DK, and do you know when and in what format the 'debate' will be taking place?

Incidentally, your impression of Oxford students oughtn't be entirely coloured by the nonsense emanating from political hacks; the Hayek Society here, along with various other civil libertarian outfits, are reasonably sound.

Roger Thornhill said...

A&E,

I am not talking shit, for I speak from personal experience. Personal experience is never "shit". It may be a generalisation, but shit it is not.

While there are countless acts of individual heroism, the NHS is systemically dysfunctional.

"and try to do the best within the constraints of endless government reforms"

That is my point. They should tell the government to go stuff themselves, but no, they conform to the Third Party Payer. They CANNOT tell them to bugger off because they see the government as the entity which pays their wages and controls their promotion and relocation prospects.

This is a significant part of what I mean. Is that clearer?

Jimbo1 said...

Bring it on DK. I look forward to a written transcript of the session.

By the way, in light of some of the comments here, not all State School teachers are leftist Marxists. I have a friend who teaches Chemistry in a State School (or tries his best to; not easy when the curriculum is changed and dumbed down every year by the NuLabour Devotees in the Department of Education), and he's always voted Tory. He's also not a member of the NUT, and has not been on strike this last week.

bintyd said...

Ironically the manifesto of the UKLP reads like a student publication. Poor. You will NEVER be taken seriously by the system so why bother? Abolish income tax?! Nice idea, although call me crazy but I don't think I'll trust your number-crunching skills on this one. You guys might be able to tear apart some Oxford students (notorious douche bags), but in the HoC, you'd be laughed out of the building.

Ade said...

A&E charge nurse writes: For example, those with a lifetime addiction to fags and booze (in other words a fair proportion of yer typical Brits) will do less well compared to to their healthier european counterparts when they develop cancer and heart disease.

Erm, the proportion of smokers in the UK is significantly lower than most of the rest of Europe; and from what I can tell (anecdotal evidence only), alcohol consumption is broadly similar.

There are some differences in the pattern of consumption - particularly alcohol - but it would be a fallacy to say that Europeans are, per se, healthier than the British.

Graeme Brooks, Trinity College said...

Hey. I'm the student hosting you guys on the 22nd. Looks like I'm in for a treat, possibly accompanied by a lynching by a mob of pitch-fork wielding 'liberals'.

While I share your distaste for the conditioned knee-jerk reactions of the conservatives and libdems quoted in the article, your reaction doesn't seem the best way to alter it. Pulling the 'fuckers' to pieces might be entertaining, but will probably just alienate a lot of them. While you may be happy with a few people contemplating your message, and 'consider it a victory', the hard truth is that if this party (and I'm a member) doesn't get good headlines and much increased membership by Christmas, it'll probably die a slow and expensive death... and we'll have to continue handing over 40% of our income.

There are some closed-minded, middle/upper class wankers here. True. However, those that turn up probably will be open to new ideas... IF presented insult-free. Were I to give you some advice, it would be that you engage the people that turn up with a touch of humility and a bucketload of diplomacy. After all, it isn't their fault libertarianism is normally presented by unsympathetic politics tutors, dry economists or an overly smug/arrogant net community. For the most part, they are as intelligent as they think they are.

I'll look into getting the event recorded, as another poster suggested. That is, of course, unless you guys are already sorting something like that?

See you soon!

bintyd said...

Sorry Graeme but your humble devil is a swear blogger, that, roughly translated, means that he is a total douche.

He has a penchant for wearing a tailored mesh gimp-suit which is connected via bits of string to his many policy ideas which drag behind him as he walks (don't be surprised if they are visually represented on the night as logs of human faeces)

Graeme, you are too a total douche.

Old Holborn - bitter and twisted said...

"Pulling the 'fuckers' to pieces might be entertaining, but will probably just alienate a lot of them"

Alienated Oxford arse benders. The end of the world is nigh.

I go for the entertainment value. In fact, I'd release a few lions into the debating chamber. What's the worse that could happen? A few silver spoons flying around and some skinny, over educated, over priviledged squealing like stuck pigs.

What is most likely to grab headlines for the LPUK?

"students really nice. LDUK offered cups of Earl Grey. Academics to discuss for the next thirty years "

OR

"Live Lions eat fat American student and a Muslim student and the Son of the Earl of Bumsbury during "abolish income tax" debate in posh Uni."

???

I'm off to William Hills to get odds on that

Graeme Brooks, Trinity College said...

"Alienated Oxford arse benders. The end of the world is nigh."

Insult them all you like. The plain fact of the matter is that in 20 years it is Oxford and Cambridge students that will make up significantly more than half of the MPs, Executives, and top-tax-bracket earners in this country. Maybe that's fair, maybe it isn't, but the fact remains. Regardless of whether they are sons of inbred Etonian toffs or reasonable people suffering from a bad stereotype, they will probably have more control over this country (and by extension your life) in 20 years than you will have over your bladder, so it's best to get them on-side.

I think the leaders of LPUK understand that converting Oxford students might see them do more than just spend the rest of their lives venting on blogs and living in a cocoon of smug irrelevancy.

"Graeme, you are too a total douche"

Thankyou. I shall now re-evaluate my life and realise that, in fact, I should be just like you.

Old Holborn - bitter and twisted said...

Sorry, nobody ever changed ANYTHING by doing exactly as it has been done before

Nobody ever achieved ANYTHING by doing exactly as it has been done before.

I really don't see the Oxford debate as a chance to convert those with the greatest and most vested interest in the country in not changing anything whilst they wait for their turn in the trough.

I do see it as a great opportunity to get as many people to hear the message though.

Let the lions loose.

the a&e charge nurse said...

graeme brooks - what thoroughly depressing counsel you offer: diplomatic posturing to appease tomorrows apparachiks.

The implied threat ('WE'..... will have more control over your bladder) seems particularly indictaive of the sort of meglomaniacs we have to put up with.

An internet community is what it is, and all the better for being a forum were divergant ideas can be subject to cross examination.

Don't worry though, you've got plenty of time to churn out tedious manifestos - just don't expect many people to be genuinely inspired by your ideas (or your tendency to covert bullying).

Rory Meakin said...

I don't quite know why people are laying into Graeme Brooks so much. All he has done is offer a little sober but worthy advice about how to win over an audience.

I find his advice dull and dreary - I much prefer the spectacle of fired up adversarialism stoked by rubbing people up the wrong way with ideas they're not used to expressed by way of unashamedly pointing out the authoritarianism in others' arguments. That explains why I love reading the Kitchen!

But he has a point. There will be some there who will be curious about liberalism and the Libertarian Party. Tell them how much you hold them in contempt and you're unlikely to get off to a good start in converting the heathen.

The fact he's organised this meeting, and is a member of the Libertarian Party should suggest that he at least wants liberalism to advance, even if you don't accept his advice re presentation.

Devil's Kitchen said...

A&E,

Quite so (and I shall read your link when I get a sec).

Graeme,

Taken on board. Seriously, we are looking forward to it...

Old Holborn,

Thank you for your feedback. Since I design and maintain the LPUK website, could you tell me more precisely what needs FIXED, please?

DK

jortbagw@hotmail.co.uk said...

Our nurse seems quite clear and capable, but she's missing one key point. The attack is not about the people on the front line. They are not the ones causing the problem. I have worked in organisations where the people at the coal face are all top notch and dedicated (this last is actually more important) but they're managed by muppets who have nothing to do with their time but get in the way of the people doing the job. Whether it's in the name of putative "efficiency" or some other such politically correct bollocks that they don't actually have the experience to comment on (e.g. it's much more efficient if doctors spend less than 10 mins with each patient), let alone implement. The results for the organisationa re always the same, downwards. I respect our primary care givers, just like I respect anyone prepared to put him/her self between me and a bullet (our military). I'm just not too impressed by the people who decide HOW these people are used/misused/wasted. The NHS budget has almost tripled under our current bunch of thieving scumbags. Seen three times as many Nurses and Doctors on the front line have you?

Social "anything" being better is a myth that anyone watching over the 20th century should be disabused of by now. Witness, the Soviet Union. The EU are trying to put a soviet style approach to everything. And, as a result, they have the midas touch in reverse. Everything they touch turns to shit. If you want something (anything) to work you need two things.
1. A feedback loop so people have the opportunity to learn.
2. A profit/failure motive, so getting it wrong fucking hurts so that there is an incentive to learn from the feedback loop.
Government interference abrogates both of these. The people dont give a fuck about messing up. It doesnt cost them anything. After all it's their money not yours.

DK. One relevant suggestion, as someone who believes deeply in your cause. Post the time and directions to the debate(for those of us not familiar with Oxford). I'll be there, if only to assess whether the UKLP has the potential to deliver something I believe passionately in. If so, I'll get involved.

As for Guy. I'm giving you credit in assuming that your dismissal is based on the idea that UKLP will never get in. How long ago was it that the MSM was suggesting that the Tories would slip to being the third party, behind the lib-dems. My point is nothing to do with the Tories, who would be my default choice as the less noisome option. The point is that labour are in power with just 21.6% of the vote. UKLP only have to capture and motivate (to vote) a little more than a fifth of the population to sweep into power.


Thanx
Jorb

Devil's Kitchen said...

Rory,

I agree: Graeme's advice is absolutely sensible (and most people who have met me know that I am actually quite polite and well-spoken in real life).

We shall argue clearly, concisely and calmly...

DK

Devil's Kitchen said...

Guys, I have no idea if the debate is open to the public, but I imagine not (which is why I haven't mentioned it before).

DK

jorbagw@hotmail.co.uk said...

sorry, your money not theirs (2nd para).

DK: it's a university, everything should be open. Find out and hold their head to the grindstone until it is!

Jorb

Graeme Brooks, Trinity College said...

It's good to hear that the approach will be sensitive. The Oxford Stereotypes aired here are really unfortunate, and I think that when you guys arrive you'll be pleasantly surprised by how normal we all are.

To answer some questions...

It will be a very short presentation followed by a Q&A. It won't be in the formal style of a debate. I will try and record it despite the difficulties of such an open session.

The room at Trinity has been booked by me as an individual. That means I could open it to the public, but if anything goes wrong it's on my head. With the militant protestors we get around here, we have to be very careful, so I have my reservations. It would be a shame to exclude interested parties though. Maybe if you let DK know that you would like to come, we can sort out some kind of guest list and email you directions.

Then again, hopefully the LPUK guys will be doing more of these sessions in other places, which might be more convenient for members of the public to attend. If they aren't planning any, they should be.

Devil's Kitchen said...

Thank you, Graeme. I realise that my stereotyping may have been a little harsh (let's hope that my Oxford-attending step-sister doesn't see it, eh?) but I was in a minor rage yesterday...

DK

Old Holborn - bitter and twisted said...

Poof.

Tell them their system is corrupt. Tell them they will have NO power over you, me and the great unwashed. They already have no power over Monarchy or the landed gentry and they know it.

And then let a lion loose. See if their "system", a system that has enslaved MILLIONS, the whole of Europe, can deal with it

Rich said...

I tried to leave a comment on the Cherwell article, pointing out that when Martin Nelson says, "Real freedom of choice depends upon the economic situation in which you find yourself," he is (probably quite deliberately) confusing freedom and power. Sowing such confusion is of course in his, and the Lib Dems' in general, best interests. My comment hasn't shown up, unsurprisingly.

Craig R said...

No substance to this comment other than to wish you good luck! :-)

the a&e charge nurse said...

old holborn has, I believe, neatly encapsulated the universal dilemma for aspiring politicos - either,
acculturate, i.e. learn to play the game.

Or snipe from the periphery because ideas (while superficially attractive) are usually too complex to address the diverse needs of 60million consituents.

By the way Graeme, stop obsessing about Oxford, ta.

Anonymous said...

"The plain fact of the matter is that in 20 years it is Oxford and Cambridge students that will make up significantly more than half of the MPs, Executives, and top-tax-bracket earners in this country."

I lecture at one of these 'top' institutions. Given the quality of my students the above statement makes me very, very depressed.

PS. Over 3 million people pay top rate tax. Nowhere near half of these are Oxbridge graduates.

Old Holborn - bitter and twisted said...

I don't believe you can "convert" people to Libertarianism any more than you can convert a Jew to Christianity.

Libertarianism is a state of mind. You either object to having your life managed for you by others or you don't.

Don't go trying to convert them. These people are banking on having the reins of power in 20 years time. They've been promised it, and they WANT it so badly.

Go and make the point that Libertarianism means that there are people out there who are organising themselves to tell the State that absolute power has corrupted it absolutely. Tell them they won't be having it so easy as their elders. Tell them any actions they make on my behalf will be challenged by me.

Don't forget to smile for the CCTV cameras, someone in power is going to be making a note of the "subversives" who turn up.

Guy Levin said...

DK,

When I said that those with Libertarian principles would be 'best served' by a Conservative government, I was restricting my set of considered governmental options to those within the realm of reasonable possibility (ie. Con/Lab or some coalition including the Lib Dems). Obviously libertarians may be best represented by your own party, however, as this is not going to happen (at least in the short/medium term) I did not consider it. Apologies for not making myself clearer on this point.

You say that 'since the EU controls a significant amount of our legislation, a goodly amount of things that the Tories are promising are simply not possible.' So you do seem to agree with me that practicality matters in politics. This is the primary point I was making, and aside from any ideological or policy issue.

I do disagree with some of your policy proposals and political philosophy, but that is a separate debate, and one which I hope to have in person in a few weeks time.

I am looking forward to the visit, and will give you the 'little more contemplation' you hope for.

Will you be coming to the debate - I always like to meet people who call me a 'fucking moron'?

Sincerely,

Guy Levin

Old Holborn - bitter and twisted said...

Guy Levin said

"Will you be coming to the debate - I always like to meet people who call me a 'fucking moron'?
"

That sounds like a threat.Ha ha ha. Can I call you a brainless fucktard , a wankstain on the duvet of humanity or a fetid moist jizz-drizzle?

Would you like to meet me now?

I'll be the one with all the Lions

Devil's Kitchen said...

Guy,

"When I said that those with Libertarian principles would be 'best served' by a Conservative government, I was restricting my set of considered governmental options to those within the realm of reasonable possibility (ie. Con/Lab or some coalition including the Lib Dems)."

Yes, I am aware of that. I'm afraid that you have come in on this after nearly three years of bitter argument between myself and other people who think this way: we must vote Conservative because that is the only way possible.

However, the point is that the Tories are not Libertarian. They may be nearer in terms of economic freedom (but I would argue that even that is doubtful).

The true state of affairs is that Libertarians are not served by any of the main three parties: which is, why, of course, the LPUK was set up.

"I am looking forward to the visit, and will give you the 'little more contemplation' you hope for."

Excellent. I also realise, by the way, that it was a short article and thus required brief soundbites; I am just tired of people arguing that such and such is not possible.

For what it is worth, however, I think that the next GE will be almost entirely fought between Labour and Tories and that the support for small parties, which has been growing steadily over the last ten years, will be pretty much wiped out.

"Will you be coming to the debate - I always like to meet people who call me a 'fucking moron'?"

Work permitting, yes, I shall be at the debate: I'm happy for you to abuse me in return should you feel it necessary. I wouldn't dish it out if I couldn't take it, after all.

However, I would point out that DK is a persona, to a large extent, and you will find me rather more calm in person (not least because of the catharsis that this blog provides).

Old Holborn,

I think that one can be persuaded as to why Libertarianism is morally right and economically feasible.

After all, 60 years of the Welfare State have shown that social democracy leads to what Cameron calls "a broken society"; both economically and morally, the Welfare State has been an expensive failure.

DK

DK

Anonymous said...

Guy Levin: “Obviously libertarians may be best represented by your own party, however, as this is not going to happen (at least in the short/medium term) I did not consider it.

“You say that 'since the EU controls a significant amount of our legislation, a goodly amount of things that the Tories are promising are simply not possible.' So you do seem to agree with me that practicality matters in politics.”

Is this conflation deliberately misleading or just stupid? It is one thing to say that liberals’ interests are best served by voting for a party which has a better chance of forming a government as a matter of practicality. It is quite another to say that recognising contradictions of a party which supports policies which conflict with its support for continued membership of the EU.

If people really are going to be ‘practical’ when it comes to deciding who to vote for, only those in very marginal constituencies should consider holding their nose and voting for a more popular but inferior alternative. Their vote is not going to change who gets elected to their constituency, still less which party forms a government. Better to ensure the party which best represents your views achieves one more vote to its tally. What difference does it make that the other party’s majority might be one vote bigger, or its loss one vote smaller?
(Rory Meakin)

P said...

Dear Mr Devil,

just some food for thought - I believe that most of the Libertarian policies are very radical compared to the currently mediocre policies employed by the Big 2 (and that limp hanger-on Third) Parties. Many should find them attractive in trying to find solutions for this very dysfunctional country but surely the best attitude is to use sensible negotiation in your tactics rather than simply accusing people that disagree with you as being totally moronic cunts?

I mean, many conservatives would largely agree with you on the fiscal details (such as that we should work on abolishing taxes to low level and encouraging personal responsibility) but would disagree with you on Social issues (e.g. legalising drugs and hookers - are decent girls on the dole going to have payments withdrawn for not taking a legitimate "job" in a bordello?). By putting your case across carefully and politely to conservative types, many will come away with an interest and might well start to talk about these ideas within their own circles and form influence within their own groups. Similar arguments can be made of other political "typecasts". By astute reasoning you might get them to meet in the middle somewhat through influence within their own parties/circles of ordinary voters, which would be a very good achievement for you.

Perhaps a reasonable interpretation of the Lib Dem Oxford President's criticism is that there is an element of doubt about where the limit of what you describe in your pages as "minarchism" actually lies.

"Too little" government would be possibly as harmful as "too much" government in some circumstances. There must be a minimum threshold of standards and laws, with the associated publicly-employed people that would allow such a government to function. There would still be a criminal code and there still would be criminals, even if "trivial" crimes were legalised. This would still involve substantial expense. Also, if the people at the bottom of society are immediately (or within the first term of 5 years) dropped into the deep end of laissez-faire economics, they may well just leave and go to a more friendly jurisdiction.

I'll get to the point - while the manifesto reads well as an altruistic declaration of intent, the policies as a whole would be a major perturbation to a very complex and non-linear system. There is very little information about future projected effect of the policies. For example, in the Libertarian Party "Defence and Security" page there is nothing solid. It is all very well proposing a "review" of defence (which any party/body could do) but to suggest that the UK will be Neutral and in NATO is just plain confusing. Similarly, while I would applaud the energy independence stance there is nothing in there that is more than hand waving. You need some solid policies with clear information as to how you will implement them and how it will impact upon the country as a whole. People can understand very well what paying no income tax will mean. What they don't know is how much paying for private sector substitutes is going to cost them. People can understand that there should be an attack on the massive volumes of inefficiency in the general tax and spend system. People don't know how many savings can be made, nor what is the trade-off between slashing government expenditures and seeking efficiencies within the tax system. How quickly will the private sector be able to pick up the masses of government employees to be laid off necessarily? How can such a transfer be made without increasing the structural unemployment rate substantially over the term of government? Until all of these questions are answered, there must surely be a legitimate doubt about how it all works?

Yours,

P

Larry Teabag said...

Honestly, I'm fucking gutted I can't make it.

"Right you bunch of fucking overprivileged braindead morons. I know you think the sun shines out of your collectivist upper-class arses, but we've crunched the government numbers to prove once and for all that not only are you a bunch of fuckwitted statist student wankers, but actually you're evil to boot. Um, vote for us, please..."

Anonymous said...

"I'll get to the point - while the manifesto reads well as an altruistic declaration of intent, the policies as a whole would be a major perturbation to a very complex and non-linear system."

Ha!

Martin Nelson said...

DK,

I stand by my comment that "[r]eal freedom of choice depends upon the economic situation in which you find yourself". Libertarianism takes as one of its prime principals that all men (and women) are born equal. Whilst this may be true from the point of view that we all have the same intrinsic value as human beings, it is not true when one considers the differing situations into which chance places us. To give the broadest example, whilst a white upper- or middle-class child such as you claim all Oxford students were (we were not) born in the United Kingdom or the United States might well have a very good chance of getting a good education, attending university, and becoming the rational economic decision-maker Libertarianism prizes, this can hardly be said of of a child in extreme poverty in Africa, who only really has the chance to live a life of starvation and destitution before dying young.

Even if one ties Libertarianism to Nationalism, so as to discount those in economic suffering beyond the borders of one's country, as I have seen done in America, then the argument still stands, for it just as much applies to the single mother in a run-down estate who was never given proper information about contraception and never received anything near a decent education.

The fact that there are people from stereotypically 'poor' or 'deprived' backgrounds in the Times rich list is an example which proves my point, for, although they are there, they are noticeable in their rarity. Last time I read the Times rich list (something I rarely do- it depresses me) one of the top five was a direct relation to the Queen. Coincidence?

Like Guy, I very much look forward to meeting you and discussing this in person. Although personally, I rather enjoy being called a 'fucking moron'- it shows I am annoying the right people.

Yours,
Martin Nelson
President, Oxford University Liberal Democrats
Lady Margaret Hall

Devil's Kitchen said...

Martin,

"Libertarianism takes as one of its prime principals that all men (and women) are born equal."

No, it doesn't. You're thinking of Communism or something similar.

Libertarians hold that all persons are the absolute owners of their lives, and should be free to do whatever they wish with their own bodies or property, provided they do not infringe on the rights of another to engage in that same freedom.

There is nothing in that summation about equality -- either of opportunity or outcome.

Indeed, if you take property off one person to give it to another whom you deem less fortunate, then you are violating the non-aggression principle. Plus, of course, you are setting yourself above the person whose property you have forcibly removed and are thus negating your own assertion of equality.

As it happens, I am less of a Rights Libertarian than a Consequentialist and am thus slightly less fussy than my colleagues about the ideology.

I'll expand later on, when I get home.

DK

Anonymous said...

How come Martin Nelson managed to type all those words and yet say practically nothing at all? “Freedom of choice” – what a creepy little phrase? Something dreamt up by tofu-munching authoritarians to justify crushing freedom.

“The fact that there are people from stereotypically 'poor' or 'deprived' backgrounds in the Times rich list is an example which proves my point, for, although they are there, they are noticeable in their rarity.”

This is so bone-headed it’s untrue. Why on earth ought a given section within an income or especially wealth distribution be constituted of some kind of microcosm of the offspring of the whole population of the last generation? Intelligence and drive, the two most important factors in income distribution, are not allocated by lottery. Intelligent driven types are likely to have intelligent driven children.
(Rory Meakin)

Larry Teabag said...

Hang on - surely that all this stuff about "Energy independence" is the absolute antithesis of free-trade??

Surely people should be purchasing their energy from wherever they like, without the dead-hand of the state reducing our dependency on this, or commissioning reports into that? Shouldn't it be up to private firms to worry about "the synthesis of hydrocarbons using surplus or erratic electricity", etc.?

I gotta say a government which worries about the details of wind-energy technology doesn't sound very minarchist to me...

Devil's Kitchen said...

And yet, Mr Teabag, ensuring that you can maintain power supplies should Rus... an Unnamed Power decide that it wants to get shirty might also come under the banner of defending one's citizens which is, of course, the primary function of a state.

I think that the idea would be to trade power as we already do, but also to ensure that were, say, Rus... an Unnamed Power to decide to cut supplies, we would still be able to function.

DK

Anonymous said...

If one owns oneself in entirety, then surely there is no taxation amount that can be justifiable on ethical grounds, no matter how small, and even for defense?

Devil's Kitchen said...

And that, Anon, is why getting libertarians to agree on anything is widely regarded as "herding cats". It's a tricky aspect.

As I said, I am a consequentialist, rather than a Rights Theorist. Thus, I acknowledge the need for a (very tiny) government and thus (a tiny amount of) taxation.

However, I also recognise that taxation is, technically, extortion with menaces.

DK

Anonymous said...

Thank you for your answer, DK. I admit, I was playing devil's advocate (in his own kitchen, no less) - and wanted to see what you thought about taxation.

I agree with you in the need for a minuscule government, though for me personally I see miniarchism as an interim stage on the road to no government. As such, I support the LP

-Anon (no, not that one, the other one! Yes, that one.)

Andrew Roocroft said...

I fail to see how securing a resource can in any way may be construed as coming "under the banner of defending one's citizens" as commonly understood by libertarians - ie, defending their person and property from violence. It is, for all intents and purposes, the assurance for some people of a certain standard of life, and in this respect an entirely 'positive right.'

Indeed, if we are to take this argument to its completion, what if some other monopoly happens to arise in another natural resource or industry. How ought the state to respond - by intervention, or by free markets? Rather than create political "commissions" to determine what, where, and how energy or any other good ought to be generated, the libertarian is entirely conscious that it is neither possible, nor ethical, for the state to rationally determine how individuals attain their private ends. It is plainly a mark of a residual nationalism and faith in central planning to endow the state with such capacities.

Devil's Kitchen said...

Andrew,

Quite correct, of course. From a certain perspective.

However, energy is crucial to our way of life. Let us say that an Unnamed Power were to demand that we do x under pain of cutting off gas supplies: this could be construed as an effective attack upon the citizens of this country and, as such, fails under the government's mandate of protecting its citizens against aggressive foreign powers.

Whilst the idea of total self-sufficiency is ludicrous, it would be wise to ensure that we had some back-up.

In practice, an LP government would let the market get on with it. However, since people keep asking us about energy security, we thought we'd whack something in.

Read between the lines and you'll see that the only action that we commit to is removing all subsidies...

DK

Chris Benjamin said...

"Libertarianism takes as one of its prime principals that all men (and women) are born equal."

Are you insane? Of course Libertarians don't believe that everyone is born equal. Libertarians don't deny that some people are born blind and others with sight. Libertarians reject that the state must be used as a tool by the law makers/politicians to correct this inequality, because if it is, then this "equality" can only be achieved by sacrificing freedom. In order for people to be provided with equal oppertunities, you argue that the state must interfere. If the state is to be involved in "correcting" society, then it must carry out the "centralisation of persons details". Otherwise someone who inherited a lot of money might see it confiscated, despite being born with other disadvantages, such as blindness. If the state is to make your utopia, it must have all these details, and correctly calculate how to redistribute wealth in order to create "social justice". I oppose this because its a massive attack on individual liberty, and because you simply wouldn't be able to make all these calculations correctly. Equality under the law which is based on the principle that people are born with equal moral worth, which is what classical liberals like myself and libertarians believe is the best way to ensure equality of oppertunity. Martin Nelson it would be much appreciated if you could inform me how can the government or any person for that matter have the knowledge to correct the "brute luck" of birth, and even with that knowledge have the ability to correct it.

Andrew Roocroft said...

Thanks for your response; I'm a little heartened that it isn't seriously intended, but it seems like such a plainly incoherent principle to set out - and one which, as I indicated, leads entirely consistently to market intervention in every sector - that it's rather absurd to include it. Your response hasn't really explained why it's there at all.

This euphemism that you keeping using, of some "Unnamed Power," is precisely what I meant by residual nationalism. As a libertarian I have a strict principle of holding governments to the same ethical standards and individuals; a violation of the non-aggression principle by either is equally bad (though, with Lysander Spooner, I might be inclined to condemn statist meddling with the plunder it has extracted). This means strict parity - not holding governments to higher standards.

When you say, suppose "an Unnamed Power were to demand that we do x under pain of cutting off gas supplies," you're entirely wrong to infer any normative consequences. They do say x - it just happens to be that x = 'pay us for the resources we're selling,' which is hardly an unlibertarian demand. As is central to free-market economics, there is no such concept as a 'just price,' a 'just wage' or any other objective criterion for evaluating the economic worth of some resource. It is entirely subjective, and it ought to be the subjective actions of buyers of energy to determine how energy is produced, by whom, and where.

If Russia, or the OPEC nations, increase the price at which they are willing to sell energy resources to British individuals, it is entirely the option of the buyer to reject the offer; he cannot assume that simply because he has heretofore come to enjoy a reasonably stable price and incorporate it into his daily life that he is perpetually entitled to the good at that cost. If we accept that there is some "effective attack" on potential buyers by an owner of resources who refuses to supply them anew at expiry terms, we must conclude that there is no basis for him to legitimately own those resources except insofar as he supplies - ie, that the property he doesn't sell ought to be confiscated.

I do look forward to your visit next month, but I hope you'll have become a little more consistent so as to avoid precisely these arguments - that intervention in one area is justification for it in others - and the necessary and logical compromises with statism that your present position entails.

Finally, out of curiosity, what is your party's stand on Soverign Wealth Funds?

Devil's Kitchen said...

"This euphemism that you keeping using, of some "Unnamed Power," is precisely what I meant by residual nationalism."

The "Unnamed Power" is a reference to a sketch from Beyond The Fringe.

"As a libertarian I have a strict principle of holding governments to the same ethical standards and individuals; a violation of the non-aggression principle by either is equally bad..."

Well, of course. However, even supposing that we had a Libertarian government, it is highly unlikely that all other governments would also be Libertarian. Whilst the LP would not violate the non-aggression principle, it does have a duty to protect its people in the event of another government doing so.

"They do say x - it just happens to be that x = 'pay us for the resources we're selling,' which is hardly an unlibertarian demand. As is central to free-market economics, there is no such concept as a 'just price,' a 'just wage' or any other objective criterion for evaluating the economic worth of some resource. It is entirely subjective, and it ought to be the subjective actions of buyers of energy to determine how energy is produced, by whom, and where."

What happens if the payment demanded is (a) not entirely in the form of money and (b) a higher price than we are willing (or able) to pay? Especially if the supplier controls enough of said resource to be an effective monopoly supplier.

Personally, I think that hydrocarbons will not be a problem within twenty years or so (partly because of this).

"Finally, out of curiosity, what is your party's stand on Soverign Wealth Funds?"

I'll let our HoP answer that one. Our manifesto is still very much undr development -- a work in progress, if you like -- so we are happy to take comments on board.

Alernatively, feel free to contribute to the manifesto over at the forums...

DK

Andrew Roocroft said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Andrew Roocroft said...

What happens if the payment demanded is (a) not entirely in the form of money and (b) a higher price than we are willing (or able) to pay? Especially if the supplier controls enough of said resource to be an effective monopoly supplier.

a) Either the individuals involved accede to the other demands, or they reject the offer. If you mean the threat of violence, well, that's altogether another matter. But it's totally and incomparably different to say, "If you don't buy from us, we'll invade your country," and to say, "We're offering goods on peaceable terms in a free-market, which we aren't willing to depart with for anything less than x. Take it or leave it."

b) Tough. Just as a supermarket's offering prices for food that is beyond the earnings of a destitute person in a libertarian society doesn't legitimate compulsion against them, so neither can the 'need' of an individual for energy impose any violently-enforceable duty on another to supply a resource.

I'll let our HoP answer that one. Our manifesto is still very much undr development -- a work in progress, if you like -- so we are happy to take comments on board.

Actually, I don't really care what your party's formal position is. If, however, you are in favour of energy independence or whatever, perhaps you might care to explain how you personally view foreign acquisitions of British 'strategic' assets.

I also doubt that I'll join your party, though I am in broad agreement with your direction. It's just that democracy is, unless explictly voluntarily consented to, a violation of the non-aggression principle and the notion that each individual owns only himself and his property. As per Bastiat, "Property does not exist because there are laws; Laws exist because there is property."

Devil's Kitchen said...

Andrew,

"If, however, you are in favour of energy independence or whatever, perhaps you might care to explain how you personally view foreign acquisitions of British 'strategic' assets."

Ah, well, if you're going to make it personal... No, I'm not. Couldn't give a crap. Although I'm interested by some of the technology coming through and think that our energy companies should be spending their R&D cash on that rather than fucking windfarms. But then, remove the wind subsidy and they probably would...

"It's just that democracy is, unless explictly voluntarily consented to, a violation of the non-aggression principle and the notion that each individual owns only himself and his property."

Oh, I quite agree with you...

"Personally, I don't particularly care about democracy: I do care about liberty. Democracy is not the point of the exercise, the endgame: liberty is."

DK

Old Holborn - bitter and twisted said...

Laws exist because there are lawyers.

Bread exists because there are bakers.

Flour, water, yeast

Bake your own. It is SO easy

Yet Millions depend on Mothers Pride. Especially Trinity students......

Andrew Roocroft said...

DK;

from the linked post:

"But, in some ways, perhaps we should not make such a fuss about the Lisbon Treaty: our governments have already given away so many of our powers that it hardly seems worth fighting for those that are left...

We will all be EU citizens soon, whether we desire that or not, and EU citizens we shall remain until the people rise up..."
(emphasis in original)

The bit you chose to italicise is precisely the point where (I assume) we must disagree. Unless a state is founded upon the peaceful consent of those governed, it is illegitimate. This applies just as much to the United Kingdom, England or a regional body as much as it does to a Franco-British union, the European Union or some 'international' form of government. In each case, you simply substitute some alternative territorial unit for what constitutes a polity; in no case is it just, unless the participants explicitly consent. If they do not, they ought to be allowed to secede, and if they are prohibited by force from so doing, they are entitled to resist in self-defence. The state, in my mind, has an entirely illegitimate claim to sovereignty if we start from the premise that each person is individually sovereign over their own lives and the property they acquire through first use and peaceful exchange.

That the current unit whose sovereignty you think ought to be preserved from the menace of central European power is an established nation state with a historical record of existence makes it no less coercive. You may retort, of course, that my alternative is anarchy, but this is no real counter-argument; in fact, since you seem to oppose supranationalism - ie, you favour the existence of disjoint sovereign nation states - you are implicitly endorsing the principle that it is perfectly acceptable for there to exist more than one political unit. The problem I have with minarchism is that it offers no principled defence for there existing 200 or so states, instead of 500, or 1000 &c, and can say nothing except that 'things are as they are' in reply to criticisms of this kind, nor respond to questions of secession - as in Kosovo, say. If you can accept the principle that there needn't be one planet-wide legal system - and, indeed, think that within each state, the people ought to be sovereign - then you endorse anarchy amongst nations. Just think of each nation as a private enterprise, a property owner (ie, sovereign over their territory) with varying numbers of shareholders dispensing justice without oversight, and you reach the conclusion that there is nothing necssarily wrong in there existing adjacent pieces of property governed by different legal code.

The anarcho-capitalist position offers a principle, then, to determine where these boundaries should lie. It claims that these boundaries ought not to be determined by the claims of Habsburg princes or the conclusions of Napoleonic design, but determined at the individual level, by the legitimate property owner - which pre-exists the nation state (hence Bastiat's phrase).

This is all rather removed from the discussion at hand, but it is something that has been annoying me, every time I read about "parliamentary sovereignty" or "our country" on your blog. Just my thoughts why I shan't be joining your attempt, regardless of its possible merits, to take control of one of these illegitimate polities. I do, however, look forward to hearing your arguments in a few weeks time.

Roger Thornhill said...

To think the supply of energy to the UK operates under free trade/market conditions is absurd.

Energy dependence is the cause of much military adventurism. It is hypocritical of countries and their peoples to bitch and moan about such things while they sleep soundly in the warm house that such adventurism secures. A Libertarian Party does not wish to rely on such adventurism.

Until there is a better way of reducing exposure to political leverage via energy, then pursuit of energy independence is a least worst option. It can be a de facto independence due to the plethora of sources that are not directly or indirectly linked or it can be an actual independence. Maybe the term should be "not dependent" as opposed to independent.

Of course, some of the more Socialist bent would like to see all countries at the mercy of others so drawing more power to Supranational bodies upon which they will rely, like the UN.

Larry Teabag said...

To think the supply of energy to the UK operates under free trade/market conditions is absurd.

The question is not whether it does, but whether it should. I had naively assumed that a Libertarian Party would have felt strongly that that's exactly how it should work.

Andrew Roocroft said...

Energy dependence is the cause of much military adventurism. It is hypocritical of countries and their peoples to bitch and moan about such things while they sleep soundly in the warm house that such adventurism secures. A Libertarian Party does not wish to rely on such adventurism.

This is a quite ridiculous statement. It is tantamount to arguing that jealousy is the cause of some crime, and so, in order to avoid feelings of jealousy amongst the poor, the wealthy ought to have their property confiscated.

Until there is a better way of reducing exposure to political leverage via energy, then pursuit of energy independence is a least worst option.

A libertarian would declare that it is not the state's option to choose, and nor is it the state's duty to keep the electricity on or fuel prices low. It is, as I explained above, no different from the state keeping people at a certain standard of life (ie, welfare payments) because they have become so accustomed.

Ought private firms be able to acquire potential energy resources based in Britain? - of course. Ought a government dictate that foreign sources of energy will be excluded, either by fiat or by tariff? - absolutely not.

Of course, some of the more Socialist bent would like to see all countries at the mercy of others so drawing more power to Supranational bodies upon which they will rely, like the UN.

Of course, some of the more Socialist bent would like to see all individuals at the mercy of others for their energy provision, instead of contracting it on voluntary terms in private arrangements, so drawing more authority for statist planning to the to central government in Westminster.

Those of a libertarian bent, by contrast, reject the intrusion of the state into private agreements between consenting individuals and their energy suppliers as much as it rejects the interference between an individual and their minister, prostitute or psychologist. They deny that 'society' is a legitimate third party to the contract every time somebody buys petrol or arranges an electricity tariff, and reject the implication that, if one person desires to be 'independent' of a particular resource due to its provenance, they can legitimately enforce that decision on others.

Patrick said...

DK

The Welfare State has been a downright fucking abomination frankly...

On an aside note I had a dream last night that I was pulling Jacqui Smith's pubic hairs out, one by one.... Very satisfying, until she winked at me...

Sick bitch...

Steven_L said...

"...the single mother in a run-down estate who was never given proper information about contraception..." (Martin Nelson)

I think this shows just how detatched from reality you actually are. Notwithstanding people with severe learning difficulties, everyone knows what contraception is.

I come from a common or garden lower-middle class state school background in a rural area where the kids of Chief Executives were educated alongside council-estate single Mothers in waiting.

It is a combination of maternal instinct and economic reality that makes these girls want to get up the duff asap. Part of this economic reality is the welfare system. If they did not believe getting pregnant would lead to having a free house and enough money to get by as a full time Mum they wouldn't do it.

They generally love children in general and want to be good Mums, being a Mum and nothing else becomes a career choice. They are making a rational decision based on the choice put in front of them. Take away the welfare incentive to make this decision - that is the epitamy of the poverty trap - and these girls will more likely get a job and grow up a bit before hopefully making better decisions.

Patrick said...

Steven,

'They generally love children in general and want to be good Mums, being a Mum and nothing else becomes a career choice.'

Please, have you really ever met theses women?... My brain goes numb in their vicinity...

However you are correct about the career choice...

Roger Thornhill said...

andrew roocroft:

"It is tantamount to arguing that jealousy is the cause of some crime, and so, in order to avoid feelings of jealousy amongst the poor, the wealthy ought to have their property confiscated."

Your parallel/strawman has not described my point but has ironically described adventurism - a country is jealous of energy so goes out and takes it from those who have it. It also describes the attitude of some for welfare "in case the poor rob" and people do have that view. What you did not do is "explain" the intent by a Libertarian government for the State to not be pressurised into military adventurism during its term or in future governments of any stripe. It is a very different proposition.

Only someone wanting to argue the toss would suggest that a Libertarian government would not work towards an open and free market in energy.

"Ought a government dictate that foreign sources of energy will be excluded, either by fiat or by tariff? - absolutely not."

Where on earth was this suggested? It says more about you than about the Libertarian Party.

Larry Teabag said...

Only someone wanting to argue the toss would suggest that a Libertarian government would not work towards an open and free market in energy.

Or someone who's read their manifesto...