Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Summing up Libertarianism

In response to yet another stupid article on Liberal Conspiracy—a piece that claims that because some people who aren't libertarian claim to be libertarians all libertarians are not libertarianthe lovely Bella Gerens has written a scintillating explanation of what libertarianism actually entails.

The wife has a talent not only for coming at things from a perspective different from that of your humble Devil, but also for putting it in a rather succinct, clear way.
The truth is that advocates of freedom are found all over the political spectrum, but the only true libertarians are the ones who advocate it at all times in all circumstances, from the bedroom to the wallet—who believe that ‘freedom from’ is the only state of being consistent with the dignity and majesty of humankind.

‘Freedom from’ is the most important part of that ideology. Freedom from coercion. Freedom from interference. Freedom from oppression.

‘Freedom to’ is where the misunderstandings enter. People on the right think libertarians are advocating freedom to burgle, rob, rape, murder—because they read ‘freedom’ to mean ‘freedom to do whatever you please.’

People on the left think libertarians are advocating exploitation, pollution, callousness, and the primacy of making (and keeping) money above all else—because they read ‘freedom’ to mean ‘freedom to do whatever you please.’

And both sides think libertarians consider the laws we have prohibiting these activities to be a restriction on freedom.

When will they realise that they don’t understand?

Libertarians believe you should be free from coercion—and that you must not coerce anyone else. Libertarians believe you should be free from interference—and that you must not interfere with anyone else. Libertarians believe you should be free from oppression—and that you must not oppress anyone else. Because these are to be universal freedoms: what you do not wish done to you, you must not do to anyone else.

For the libertarian, there is no ‘freedom to.’ Freedom represents an absence, the absence of force and fraud. It does not represent a licence to do anything, or a right or entitlement, except the absolute human right not to be forced or defrauded.

As Bella points out, it is in the area of "freedom to" that conflicts happen.

But the whole point of libertarianism is this "do as you would be done by" attitude: a person who demands freedom from the state and then demands that this same state oppresses others is not a libertarian.

Anyway, do go and read the whole thing...

53 comments:

Nick said...

Freedom from passive smoking.

outranks

Freedom to smoke

indigomyth said...

Nick,

You have freedom from passive smoking - its called moving to another building/establishment/room.

Anonymous said...

There is an old children's book called The Waterbabies, by Charles Kingsley, in which the hero Tom, meets two women, one called Mrs Do-as-you-would-be-done-by and the other Mrs Be-done-by-as-you-did.

Perhaps the Libertarians should adopt them as mascots.

the a&e charge nurse said...

Which modern country epitomises Libertarian ideals?

If there isn't one could it be because ideals do not always translate from theory into practice?

Pogo said...

Nick... There's no such thing as "passive smoking". There's "smoke" - just like you get from a bonfire or barbecue.

And, as "indigomyth" said, if you don't like the smell you have the freedom to go elsewhere.

John East said...

There's one thing that stops me embracing libertarianism, and that's the old, miserable, humourless libertarians that one occassionally comes across who lack all compassion, have no common sense, have never heard of the word pragmatic, and apply their rigid libertarian template to every situation they come across.

I'm tempted to give an example of a website fitting the above, but it wouldn't be fair because not all of it's contributors fit my description.

Let's just say it begins with "S".

Von Spreuth said...

Pogo said...

Nick... There's no such thing as "passive smoking". There's "smoke" - just like you get from a bonfire or barbecue.

And, as "indigomyth" said, if you don't like the smell you have the freedom to go elsewhere.


I suppose you are one of those that would tell a family living next to a peado, that they should find somewhere else to live.

As a non smoker, it is NOT ME commiting an un-natural act. Therefore it is up to the smoker to bugger off to somewhere else. NOT me.

FrankFisher said...

Talking of responses to *stupid* articles on Liberal Conspiracy...

http://www.frankfisher.org/?p=84

Umbongo said...

A confusion has arisen in the use of the word "freedom", certainly since Roosevelt defined the basic "four freedoms" as comprising:

The first is freedom of speech and expression -- everywhere in the world.

The second is freedom of every person to worship God in his own way -- everywhere in the world.

The third is freedom from want -- which, translated into world terms, means economic understandings which will secure to every nation a healthy peacetime life for its inhabitants -- everywhere in the world.

The fourth is freedom from fear -- which, translated into world terms, means a world-wide reduction of armaments to such a point and in such a thorough fashion that no nation will be in a position to commit an act of physical aggression against any neighbor-- anywhere in the world.


IMHO freedon "of" and freedom "from" are fundamentally different and demand different responses. Freedoms "of" are libertarian in the sense that all that has to be done to see them exercised is nothing - no state coercion, no coercion by Jo Brand and friends, nothing. OTOH freedoms "from" demand action, generally by the state or some international outfit through taxation and/or coercion.

I'm not saying that freedom from want and fear are bad things, only that Roosevelt (deliberately or otherwise) confused the semantics of the different uses to which the word "freedom" can be put. This confusion serves the authoritarians among us only too well.

indigomyth said...

Von Spreuth,
//I suppose you are one of those that would tell a family living next to a peado, that they should find somewhere else to live.

As a non smoker, it is NOT ME commiting an un-natural act. Therefore it is up to the smoker to bugger off to somewhere else. NOT me.//

Except that smokers own things like businesses and companies. Who are you to waltz in to their establishment, and demand that they put out their cigarettes!? So yes, if you do not want to inhale smoke, sod off to a bar that has banned smoking, or set up your own where smoking is not permitted.

And your "un-natural act" comment is utter rubbish. Perhaps you are a naturist - are clothes natural? Ever had an immunisation - are they natural? Ever had modern bananas, potatoes, wheat, beef or pork? All products of thousands of years of human engineering - are they "natural"? I often leave the swearing to DK, as he is so much better at it than me, however you really are a fucking idiot!

Even were I to accept "unnaturalism" as a valid criticism of any act, it still would not be valid reason to demand that people not be allowed to do what they want in their own businesses and communities. Don't like unnatural acts? Then do not be around people who do. Simples.

indigomyth said...

Umbongo,
//Freedoms "of" are libertarian in the sense that all that has to be done to see them exercised is nothing - no state coercion, no coercion by Jo Brand and friends, nothing.//

In what way did Jo Brand and friends coerce anyone? I do not agree with what they said, but I do not know how they "coerced" anyone. To coerce is to
//...force to act or think in a certain way by use of pressure, threats, or intimidation; compel.//

Jo Brand used no force, pressure, threats or intimidation to force Andrew Sachs to do anything. The most that could be said is that he incited rage in the sort of person who reads the Daily Mail.

Andrew Sachs should have been left in peace, but if Brand had wanted to trumpet his odious nonsense over the sound waves, without directly involving Sachs, then that is his right, according to Free Speech. The same way I have the right to say that Osama Bin Laden is a fucking knob head, and that Damian Thompson is the worst human being who works in the British media industry. Freedom of Speech. There is no Freedom from Insult.

Anonymous said...

Devil, just to please me, please, don't refer to the lovely Bella as "The wife" please say " My wife".

It sounds so much better.

Meant in the kindest possible way.

Your blog--my respect.

Kevin Boatang said...

"freedom to do whatever you please."

The irony is that most 'libertarians' on the blogosphere believe exactly this, the right to do whatever they want. They are anarchists that have decided they are libertarian.

In turn DK seems to think that this perspective makes me a social democrat, which is hilarious.

The above piece is a fundamental premise of libertarianism, but many forget that this is a spectrum of ideas based upon that premise.

"do as you would be done by" is something that is largely ignored by many and that is why libertarians have garnered such a bad rep.

For instance, the smoking analogy noted above. 'Move somewhere else' is the refrain. Why? If three people say to a smoker 'can you stop', the smoker should have the deceny to say 'yes, I will if it's annoying you, because I would want someone who is shouting in my face to stop', not 'fuck of I'll do what I want so fuck you all'.

"do as you would be done by" can be translated into basic decency, manners and practicing what you preach.

Gandhi said...

KB "they are anarchists"

They may be selfish short-sighted egoists or just very, very right wing, IE: Tories, in which case they probably support state action provided it works in their favour. Try the Wikipedia entry on anarchism if still confused.

The smoking one is interesting because smokers are addicts, their addiction blinds them to the harm/discomfort caused to others, especially as regards strangers in a pub, hence the smoking ban.

The Anthropologists Code:
"Respectfully treat anyone else as he or she wishes to be treated, unless it will harm yourself or some other person (or animal). If you don't know how someone wishes to be treated, ask. If you can't ask just follow the Golden Rule and the Confucian Principle.
This approach does not assume that the other's values and dislikes are the same as our own; it enquires whether
this is so."


Not the snappiest, but fuller. Assuming that everyone else considers the same things good/bad doesn't really work, as we will all see when we open our [Christmas] presents: I f______ hate surprise gifts, they are a breach of The Code goddammit!

Anonymous said...

All the arguments etc above about passive smoking are not applicable.

Passive smoking applies to smoke in confined areas, confined areas are the domain of the owner of the private property on which the confined area lies.

There is no political aspect.

Kevin Boatang said...

Gandhi, Nope, no confusion here. I'm talking about people who beleive in absolute freedom to do as they wish because they feel they have that right. There is no mutual respect of that right. People who beleive the state in all its forms should be crushed.

Anon, fair point on smoking there. I wasn't really talking about smoking per se, just an example that's all. It could be anything.

Your views on smoking and the ban are quite correct, which is why it should have been up to each landlord to decide and not the state.

Gandhi said...

KB: You keep on at anarchists, but you don't seem to realise that there are a very broad range of people who call themselves anarchists, they don't all deny law/policing, some are just rationalists who have taken the idea of non-aggression to its logical conclusion.

Anarchists in the sense you describe are either extreme individualist egoists or nihilists, a tiny minority of all people who self-identify as anarchists.

I'm being a little disingenuous because I tend to reserve the word "anarchist" for those last two groups myself, but you get the idea.

If you want a term of abuse "nihilist" is the one I would choose.

nemo_sum said...

Sounds very much like The Goden Rule - or the fundamental belief of any worthwhile religion - to me.

Thank you for explaining it so concisely.

indigomyth said...

Kevin Boatang,

//For instance, the smoking analogy noted above. 'Move somewhere else' is the refrain. Why? //

It should be noted that when I said that I was referring of course to someone who was in a smoking establishment, and was demanding that people around them not smoke, and I was saying that they should move establishments to one more in tune with their sensibilities.

I agree that it is the polite thing to do to refrain from doing something that annoys the people around you, even in a public area. For example, whistling is not illegal (yet), however, if I was whistling and someone asked me to stop, I would because it is the polite thing to do. However there is a big difference between voluntarily desisting from doing something, and being coerced to stop doing it through threat of violence or force. If someone was whistling and would not stop, then the other people would have to move, because that person does not wish to stop.

Unfortunately, your appeal to the majority sort of means that things like freedom of speech become subservient to the majority. If the majority wish for a minority to stop speaking or printing about a topic, then should the minority do that? I do not think so. One million people do not have the right to tell one person to not speak or write as they wish. The error of democracy is to say that the million have the right to suppress the one.

Anonymous said...

The problem with freedom 'from' is that it opens the door to stuff like the precautionary principle which, in turn, leads to the banning of anything that MIGHT be a risk.

Like 'passive smoking'. And this: http://dickpuddlecote.blogspot.com/2009/10/hello-passive-drinking-global-and.html

Gandhi said...

Well now here now... on the smoking thing...

They should've banned smoking in front of children, you'd have to be some sort of mental to think it's OK to smoke around kids and it's blatantly harmful, if nothing else it creates a new generation of addicts.

Problem is they assumed they'd never get away with banning people from smoking in their own homes.

Anonymous said...

Gandhi, what the fuck? 'They should have banned smoking around children' because 'it's blatantly harmful.'

There are about ten thousand things which adults do for pleasure which are harmful (defined: if you do those things, harm is more likely to occur to you than if you don't do those things)

Should all those things be banned 'in front of children' ?

This 'save the children' argument is tired out, worn through, overused and overblown. Children COPE. Hundreds of thousands of children from smoking families don't smoke. Get a clue.

Gandhi said...

Children who've been raped also COPE.

Henry North London said...

just to change the subject

if a libertarian blogger should out you on a forum, causing you harm is he being unlibertarian? or just exercising his right to call you whatever he wants next to your real name?

just wondering you know

DocBud said...

I regard myself as an anarchist libertarian (largely though not entirely in the mould of Murray Rothbard). I'd prefer there to be no government and I resent every cent I pay in tax. Equally, I believe my freedom to do as I wish is restrained by natural laws that dictate that I should not infringe on the rights of others or harm them or their property.

I am pragmatic enough to accept that humans have so ordered themselves that a stateless society is improbable, so I take the view that everything I propose and or support should lessen the role of the state, increase liberty and reduce the need for the state to steal my money.

Henry,

I don't believe in constraints on free speech other than that you don't have the right to say what you want on someone else's property if they have imposed restrictions, however, just because one might have a freedom does not mean that nice people will always exercise that freedom.

Ghandi,

Our eldest son smokes even though we don't, it was his bit of rebellion. Our youngest daughter doesn't smoke despite spending a lot of time with her granddad when very young and he smokes like the proverbial chimney. Doesn't prove anything one way or another, however what you advocate is utter bollocks, we'd end up like the dark days in South Africa where homes were raided where it was suspected mixed race couples were having a bit of rumpy pumpy.

indigomyth said...

Henry North London,

I would say that the outer has the right to say whatever he wants. Just like it is a prostitutes right to go public with the name of the MP she banged.

Anonymous said...

Ghandi said "Children who were raped also COPE" when discussing passive smoking. This is the classic tactic of someone losing an argument. What next, bring in Hitler?

Reductio ad Hiterlum...

Gandhi said...

DocBud: In the same road where I grew up there were two kids with very nasty coughs; daddy was a smoker; they both carried inhalers prescribed by their local GP; they did not have asthma, at least not in the usual sense.

Sometimes it really is just a clear case of careless child abuse, if they'd been walking around carrying bruises there'd be no argument, but because it's smoking people aren't so sure.

There is also the issue of putting people at unreasonable risk, this has nothing to do with "freedom from", it comes safely under "freedom to" (...not be put at unreasonable risk by others); it's just a question of where you draw the line.

Gandhi said...

Anonymous: When you take an extreme example (as I did) it shows that the issue is not black and white, there is always nuance, it is never as simple as - say - Murray Rothbard would have us believe.

Anonymous said...

Gandhi, maybe they weren't so sure because it wasn't to do with the smoking, it was to do with a hereditary condition they picked up from their mother. Do you know conclusively one way or the other? Did you conduct a test by putting one of the children in a smoke-free environment? If not, you have nothing here apart from 'some kids up the road had a persistent cough (statement one)' followed by 'their father smoked (statement two)'

All we need to invalidate your 'argument' (which is an anecdote, by the way) is a counter-case: I came from a smoking family, I never had any childhood coughs or asthma etc. I don't smoke.

Now you're back where you started, i.e. nowhere, unless you have any studies which show that children from smoking families are more likely to smoke/develop lung cancer/get ill/otherwise have problems than children from non-smoking families.

If you don't have that and can cite it then all this talk is just your personal opinion 'x must be bad for y so all people doing x MUST stop or they are POTENTIAL MURDERERS!!!' and that just makes you another muppet spewing their personal likes and dislikes and expecting the world to fall in line.

Gandhi said...

Anonymous: ...and maybe it was all in their minds.

Smoking makes people sick.

Wake up and smell the fumes.

ferdi said...

Passive Smoking: The Evidence

Gandhi said...

Just one more thing: the idea that once you're on somebody elses property they can do whatever they like to you is pretty lame - can they rape you? You could've chosen to leave before you were raped.

And I'm gone.

Anonymous said...

Your final comment about rape makes it pretty clear you aren't operating rationally and you just have an agenda to push.

Demonise smokers. Knock yourself out. I don't care, I don't smoke. I'll defend it on basic libertarian principles, as will others.

It doesn't matter whether it's smoking, drinking, the ability to eat as many hamburgers as you can choke down, the ability to put as much salt on your food as you want, it's all the same.

Stop telling other people what to do.

Society has been working quite well for a very long time. It doesn't need your fanatical intervention.

Gandhi said...

If it was about controlling other people I'd be calling for a tobacco ban now wouldn't I. I DO smoke (occasionally), but not shitty old cigarettes. It's about blatant harm to other people, you can't pretend people aren't coughing, it's obvious, you can't pretend you haven't ruined their clothes, it's obvious.

When the ban came in force I realised that what I once thought was a hangover from alcohol was largely a hangover from other people's smoke, never had that sick feeling since.

If you go to a private orgy, are raped, and the owner says:
"well, yeah - there's a bit of raping that goes on, some of the punters are into it, if they don't like it they can always leave."
...is it a matter for the police? Or was a "libertarian" contract entered into?

Anonymous said...

Is that last paragraph actually meant to be an argument or is it just for comedy value?

indigomyth said...

Gandhi,
//If you go to a private orgy, are raped, and the owner says:
"well, yeah - there's a bit of raping that goes on, some of the punters are into it, if they don't like it they can always leave."
...is it a matter for the police? Or was a "libertarian" contract entered into?//

An interesting comparison. The difference between your example and passive smoking, is that rape is the forcing of yourself on to someone else; to forcibly violate someone elses body. Passive smoking is just tha; passive. It involves no force, coercion or intimidation to MAKE the non-smoker take in smoke. Now, if you wanted a better analogy, if it was a case of smokers forcing non-smokers on to the ground, holding open their mouths, and blowing the smoke into them, then I could accept a greater degree of similarity between the two situations. The key difference between rape and passive smoking is the element of force; can you show how forcing someone to have sex against their will, by violence or coercion, is similar to someone freely choosing to hang around somewhere where people are smoking.

Even in the case of the private orgy, there is still the primacy of consent. So, if someone forced you to have sex at an orgy it would still be rape, because they have forced you to have sex against your will. Going to an orgy is not consent to sleep with every person their. You clearly have not been to enough orgies!

If you voluntarily go to a smoking establishment, then someone holds you down and forces smoke into your lungs, then that IS a violation, and reasonably the police should be involved.

Now, if you want to get silly, we could imagine an establishment that advertises that, say, every woman must sleep with the owner. That every woman who enters the door must sleep with him. Now, provided that the place is reasonably well advertising its rules, then entry to such an establishment COULD be seen as knowing consent to have intercourse with the owner. But in that case it would not be rape, because they would have consented.

Gandhi said...

Serious question, you go to an orgy, you know there's a rape risk and so far nobody has been prosecuted for raping there, but it's a fantastic orgy and your chances of getting bummed are statistically very low. Is there any recourse if/when it happens? Or is implied consent enough to excuse a little raping here and there?

(General point about whether private property is an excuse for anything, there's no direct comparison with smoking and raping since with rape the cause would be a specific identifiable person)

Also for people who think that libertarians should only ever remove restrictions: if rape or murder was perfectly legal would you leave as-is? Or is it not always as simple as just removing restrictions?

Gandhi said...

indigomyth: how about when we "consent", but have every reason to believe the thing we've consented to will never actually happen? Bank fees are an example.

indigomyth said...

Gandhi,
//Just one more thing: the idea that once you're on somebody elses property they can do whatever they like to you is pretty lame - can they rape you? You could've chosen to leave before you were raped.

And I'm gone.//

Well, if you gave most burglers the choice between being raped by an irate owner, and being shot dead by a scared owner, I think most would choose the former, don't you?

If someone has permission to be on your property, than they have not commited a forcible violation, have they? So to rape them would be in the same league as killing them; an abhorrent violation of their bodies. However, if they entered your property knowing that they had to sleep with the owner, and proceeded to enter the property, then is it not reasonable to assume that they have consented to intercourse?

Another important factor to remember is that consent can be revoked. So, saying "I will sleep with you now" does not mean that I will sleep with you always. So, if someone enters the property and wants to leave to avoid having sex, and are forced to remain, then the owner is guilty of rape (and unlawful imprisonment).

Gandhi said...

indigomyth:

I don't think the burglar thing is relevant, since you're talking choice of retaliation and even then there's lawful retaliation: rape would not be lawful, if there's long enough to agree to rape rather than murder then plainly neither would be lawful.


You seem to contradict yourself after that?

DocBud said...

Anyone who has actually read Rothbard could never accuse him of presenting simplistic arguments. Quite the opposite, he assiduously works through his arguments to try and demonstrate that, despite contrary arguments, they are practical. But then, if you are presumptive enough to call yourself Gandhi, you probably don't feel the need to read those you criticise. You'd be better off calling yourself scarecrow given all the strawmen you keep using.

Gandhi said...

Rothbard was a man who would do anything to avoid recognition of nuance, he made glaring errors at a very basic level because he wanted everything to be black and white.

The accusation made against libertarianism as "the Marxism of the Right" - which I'd normally argue against - starts to look fair when applied to Rothbard. Very developed arguments based on a number of false premisses.

Kevin Boatang said...

I appear to have missed the debate going off into philosopherville. Damn.

If I may on anarchists. As I said libertarianism is a broad range of various thoughts. However, there is a basic set of points that unite the philoposphy in general, as described by Boaz. It is the weight you attach to each that determines your poisition on the libby spectrum.

My issue has always been that those on the extreme ultra freedom wing appear to be top dog, mainly in blogland. Their basic premise is that property is the most important of the priniciples, and all others are a blur.

The major issue with this can be seen with the above debate. It very quickly becomes all or nothing - no state, no welfare, etc etc, but right down to the nitty gritty of free speach and freedom.

For instance libertarians believe in the rule of law...except many beleive this ceases upon private property.

For me it is about minor differences in weighting between basic principles, when it becomes a large difference then you stop being a libertarian.

Freedom of speech and action within a context of dencency and fairness and observance to the Rule of Law. From that you can derive non-aggression, respect of property and most other libertarian ideals.

Gandhi said...

This "on my property" thing comes about because people aren't accustomed to reasoning from cause to effect. If somebody "banned" free speech on their property then the implication is that someone who says something they don't like can be punished - well that's ridiculous. In reality if somebody says something you don't like on your property then you ask them to leave, you don't fine them, you don't shoot them, etc; they have free speech regardless, because that is the law and it should always apply.

The other thing people do is use contract to justify just about anything. But contract is NOT law, contracts may be enforced by law or they may be deemed to be utter cock. 90% of the "contracts" we sign up to are just that - and are designed to intimidate people into accepting some kind of corporate fraud (I'm thinking terms and conditions here).

Anonymous said...

Gandhi, thanks for your concession.

Henry North London said...

indigomyth If I found your real name and your occupation and then called you something that you werent and something else besides I think you would be spitting feathers...

The stupidity of youth shines through in your statement... You are 23 and I am old enough to be your father, Leaving aside any Luke skywalkerisms, you just don't know enough about the world to say such twaddle

Gandhi said...

I've spoken to the Dept of Health, they've agreed to new warnings on cigarettes:
"Smoking is child rape and murder"
...next to a photo of Fred West.

Also - pub ban to be lifted and instead Libertarian Snipers will be hired to shoot all smokers on sight.

Any questions?

But seriously though: smoking is the best debating issue going, it's a fantastically complex and subtle argument, it brings in so many elements. The children thing is probably the most difficult because libertarians violently disagree on the status of children (that or pretend they don't exist for the sake of convenience).

For me smoking in the home or subjecting young children to cigarette smoke is child abuse.

selsey.steve said...

I don't care what the name of the political philosophy is, all I want is for the government to get the fuck out of my life and to leave me alone to get on as I choose. I'll pay reasonable taxes to fund things which are of benefit to the nation but I'll NOT fund a thousand and one quangos which all tell me how I must live.
I will conduct my life in conformity with accepted Western principles so the government must just get the fuck out of my face.
Oh, BTW, I'm a smoker and have been for 40+ years. Never smoked indoors, never will. Don't like people who want to smoke in my house either.
JUST DON'T MAKE INSANE FUCKING RULES ABOUT HOW I SHOULD LIVE. I DON'T LIKE IT AND WON'T HAVE IT.

DocBud said...

If we talking "glaring errors" and "false premises", Robert Locke's article on "Marxism of the Right" certainly qualifies, it largely shoots down lots of things libertarians don't believe to prove that libertarianism is bad, starting with the assumption that selfishness is a central tenet of libertarianism. It certainly has nothing to do with Rothbard.

Another such idea is "If somebody "banned" free speech on their property then the implication is that someone who says something they don't like can be punished - well that's ridiculous."

A restaurant owner would be free to insist that politics and religion could not be discussed on his premises. A libertarian would naturally respect that right, but if a non-libertarian ignored it, the restaurant owner would have the right to ask that person to leave, and use reasonable force if the person refused to leave. Libertarians would not argue that the restauarant owner could punish the transgressor because that would be disproportionate to the offence.

Rothbard on children is where I strongly disagree, and I'd agree that here, Gandhi, his application of his basic ideas leads to ridiculous conclusions.

Kevin Boatang,

You claim "libertarians believe in the rule of law".

I believe in the rule of natural law, but I do not believe in the rule of state imposed law that contravenes natural law, I obey those laws because the state coerces me. I don't pay taxes voluntarily, I pay them because if I didn't pay them, the state would use its power to punish me.

indigomyth said...

Henry North London,
//indigomyth If I found your real name and your occupation and then called you something that you werent and something else besides I think you would be spitting feathers...//

I would indeed be utterly furious - enraged even. However, it would not mean you did not have a right to say what ever you want. I do not deny that what you say may hurt me, but that is utterly irrelevant to whether or not you should be allowed to say those things.

The jibe at my youth is a typical reaction against those you disagree with. If you cannot fault my reasoning based upon logic, then your argument has little persuasive force.

indigomyth said...

Gandhi,
//indigomyth: how about when we "consent", but have every reason to believe the thing we've consented to will never actually happen? Bank fees are an example.//

I have little sympathy with such people that enter into contracts with such assumptions.

//Or is implied consent enough to excuse a little raping here and there?//

Well, rape is the having of sexual intercourse against consent. If someone says "no", that that nullifies the implied consent. You see?

Gandhi said...

"JUST DON'T MAKE INSANE FUCKING RULES ABOUT HOW I SHOULD LIVE. I DON'T LIKE IT AND WON'T HAVE IT." ~ selsey.steve

Perchance do you also have a major coffee addiction? Seek Help.

DocBud: We seem to be violently agreeing.

"I have little sympathy with such people that enter into contracts with such assumptions." ~ indigomyth

Then you'll never work in the legal profession. Thank God.

"Well, rape is the having of sexual intercourse against consent. If someone says "no", that that nullifies the implied consent. You see?" ~ indigomyth

I do, yes. The point being, when you start coughing or drop dead from cancer, the "smoker" who was responsible is nowhere to be seen. There's shared responsibility amongst a large number of anonymous people who've long since left the pub. Very much like what happens when governments fuck everyone by committee: no way to trace responsibility, and even if there is, who knew?