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ribuck
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January 27, 2011, 03:53:51 PM
 #61

... the first times that I discover this ideas and real critiques to democracy, I had the same emotional response you are having

Me too.

It took me 15 years to understand the merits of Libertarianism, then another 35 to understand the merits of Voluntarism. I'm a slow learner.
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gene
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January 27, 2011, 03:55:46 PM
 #62

This is why I am in favor of democracy; it solves those problems.

Democracy is a form of opresion. I think democrats and facists are inmoral people. Democracy is just a lighweigth facisms.

I like political discussions, but this is not one. I leave it here for today.

Fascism. "You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means."

Interestingly, corporatism is more closely associated with fascism as in Mussolini's Italy.

I'll invoke Churchill: "Democracy is the worst form of government, except for all those other forms that have been tried from time to time."

By the way, I forget to tell you that the first times that I discover this ideas and real critiques to democracy, I had the same emotional response you are having. I tried to defend it. The system and the politicians repeat the word democracy and associate it with good things all they can (there is a reason for that), so its hard to de-attach yourself from that indoctrination. I went through the same process. Maybe you end up with another conclussion, but really, using violence to impose your will its not moral just because its a big group of people deciding instead of a small one.

You assume too much. I appreciate your epiphany and am quite aware of how the term is abused. I still recognize that democracy is the most just form of society. Advocating systems which can only result in concentrations of private power seems short-sighted and a quick path to industrial feudalism. I would rather that not occur.

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hugolp
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January 27, 2011, 04:01:00 PM
 #63

... the first times that I discover this ideas and real critiques to democracy, I had the same emotional response you are having

Me too.

It took me 15 years to understand the merits of Libertarianism, then another 35 to understand the merits of Voluntarism. I'm a slow learner.

Haha.

Quote
You assume too much. I appreciate your epiphany and am quite aware of how the term is abused. I still recognize that democracy is the most just form of society. Advocating systems which can only result in concentrations of private power seems short-sighted and a quick path to industrial feudalism. I would rather that not occur.

The system you advocate is what creates the concentration of power in a few hands. The concentration of wealth that you see around is because of the laws aproved by the will of the majority.
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January 27, 2011, 04:19:14 PM
 #64


The system you advocate is what creates the concentration of power in a few hands. The concentration of wealth that you see around is because of the laws aproved by the will of the majority.


Really? I challenge you to support that statement. Do the majority of Americans support NAFTA? Do they support the war in Iraq? What percentage of Americans supported a war in Iraq before 2003? When did they support the war, and why?

Note that I could pick almost any issue and make the same point: that what most Americans want (absent enormous propaganda) is nearly diametrically opposed to implemented policy in most any topic of importance. That condition does not satisfy my definition of democracy.

Somebody mentioned PR. What role does it play in shaping opinion?  Who pays for PR and psych research into propaganda? And why? Who owns the media? The answer: private companies.

I can give references, but I encourage anyone to not take my word. Go look for yourselves. Please show that I am wrong, if you can.

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ribuck
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January 27, 2011, 04:21:20 PM
 #65

You're getting boring, gene.
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January 27, 2011, 04:23:31 PM
 #66

I am fortunate enough to take on libertarian and voluntaryist thought in the first few years of my adult life.
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January 27, 2011, 05:25:05 PM
 #67

I don't see how you expect contracts to be enforced. A sufficiently large company can contract their own private forces (mercs) to support their "economic interests." This already happens.

You are absolutely correct, this already happens, with the state taking the place of "private forces". As a private entity grows in size and wealth, the cost to secure its property increases. In a stateless society, this entity would have to pay for every cent of security services it consumed out of its own pocket. This, I think is obvious, would act as a limiting factor on the size of private entities. However, when there is a state, the larger the entity, the less they pay per capita for security services - the police are subsidized by the rest of the citizens. The state as a provider of security for the people is a sham, it's all about those with wealth paying bottom dollar for protecting their assets.
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January 27, 2011, 05:34:35 PM
 #68

I don't see how you expect contracts to be enforced. A sufficiently large company can contract their own private forces (mercs) to support their "economic interests." This already happens.

You are absolutely correct, this already happens, with the state taking the place of "private forces". As a private entity grows in size and wealth, the cost to secure its property increases. In a stateless society, this entity would have to pay for every cent of security services it consumed out of its own pocket. This, I think is obvious, would act as a limiting factor on the size of private entities. However, when there is a state, the larger the entity, the less they pay per capita for security services - the police are subsidized by the rest of the citizens. The state as a provider of security for the people is a sham, it's all about those with wealth paying bottom dollar for protecting their assets.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Executive_Outcomes

Quote

Executive Outcomes was a private military company founded in South Africa by former Lieutenant-Colonel of the South African Defence Force Eeben Barlow in 1989. It later became part of the South African-based holding company Strategic Resource Corporation.

[...]

Executive Outcomes had contracts with multinational corporations such as De Beers, Chevron, JFPI Corporation, Rio Tinto Zinc and Texaco.


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hugolp
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January 27, 2011, 05:37:26 PM
 #69


The system you advocate is what creates the concentration of power in a few hands. The concentration of wealth that you see around is because of the laws aproved by the will of the majority.


Really? I challenge you to support that statement. Do the majority of Americans support NAFTA? Do they support the war in Iraq? What percentage of Americans supported a war in Iraq before 2003? When did they support the war, and why?

Note that I could pick almost any issue and make the same point: that what most Americans want (absent enormous propaganda) is nearly diametrically opposed to implemented policy in most any topic of importance. That condition does not satisfy my definition of democracy.

Somebody mentioned PR. What role does it play in shaping opinion?  Who pays for PR and psych research into propaganda? And why? Who owns the media? The answer: private companies.

I can give references, but I encourage anyone to not take my word. Go look for yourselves. Please show that I am wrong, if you can.

Thats democracy. You are proving my point. You keep claiming that democracy is for the people, I keep saying that democracy is to take the power away from the people. Look around you and tell me which one it is.

Bush run an anti-interventionist campaign and then became the war president. Obama promised the sky... Democracy is political darwinism, the best lier wins.

And if you start talking about direct democracy lets check California. They voted to ban gay marriage and to ban marihuana. Why should gay people not be able to marry just because the majority decides its not ok? Thats democracy baning gay marriages. I think its inmoral, and anyone with half a heart can see it. Same with marihuana.
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January 27, 2011, 05:38:58 PM
 #70

I don't see how you expect contracts to be enforced. A sufficiently large company can contract their own private forces (mercs) to support their "economic interests." This already happens.

You are absolutely correct, this already happens, with the state taking the place of "private forces". As a private entity grows in size and wealth, the cost to secure its property increases. In a stateless society, this entity would have to pay for every cent of security services it consumed out of its own pocket. This, I think is obvious, would act as a limiting factor on the size of private entities. However, when there is a state, the larger the entity, the less they pay per capita for security services - the police are subsidized by the rest of the citizens. The state as a provider of security for the people is a sham, it's all about those with wealth paying bottom dollar for protecting their assets.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Executive_Outcomes

Quote

Executive Outcomes was a private military company founded in South Africa by former Lieutenant-Colonel of the South African Defence Force Eeben Barlow in 1989. It later became part of the South African-based holding company Strategic Resource Corporation.

[...]

Executive Outcomes had contracts with multinational corporations such as De Beers, Chevron, JFPI Corporation, Rio Tinto Zinc and Texaco.


You forget that all this corporations rised thanks to regulations and privileges from the governments.
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January 28, 2011, 04:49:03 AM
 #71

You're getting boring, gene.

QFT

I like Mises' somewhat odd definition of democracy, 'secession down to the level of the individual'. Then, we don't have full-frontal majoritarianism in these places we say have "democracy". Following democracy-worship and various collectivist ideologies to their conclusion gets pretty absurd. Democratic republics are pretty much just a blip on the map of history so far and seem doomed to failure to me. What we have in this type of "democracy" is a popularity contest for "our" rulers. The economic consequences of this nice-sounding doctrine are laid out nicely in Hoppe's Democracy the God that Failed, which I highly recommend to those interested. You did read this one eh gene and Baby? I mean, I'm not pointing out your ignorance to prove anything, just saying that it is apparent from what you are writing and I don't really care.

The other error I noticed skimming through here is covered in Long's Response to 10 Objections. See #8 "the rich will rule", a statist fav, yawn.

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January 28, 2011, 10:11:35 AM
 #72



So, anyway, about this Austrian economic study group.......
Babylon
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January 28, 2011, 10:58:57 AM
 #73


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Private corporations are not subject to people at all.

First, corporations are a creation of the government. Corporations are a special enterprise with government given privileges.

What you meant to say is that private enterprises are not subject to the people. Which is completely false. Private enterprises are way more subjected to the people than any governments. Private firms can not force you to do or buy something against your will. Government can. All a private enterprise can do is offer you a better product in the hope that you will want to buy it. Democratic governments just need to put a gun in your head and you must obey.


Why can't a private enterprise put a gun to your head?  Not only has it happened, it has happened often.

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January 28, 2011, 11:03:43 AM
 #74


Assuming that I have not read these books does no credit to your arguement.  I'm not a statist, I am an anti-capitalist only in that I am opposed to state power and do not see capitalism being possible without state protection of capital.


Then you do not understand what capitalism actually is.  The word, ironicly, was coined by Karl Marx.  He made it and 'ism' because he wanted to paint it as an ideology.  It's not an ideology, it's a collective description of the free exchanges of individuals within a working free market.  There is no example of true capitalism anywhere in the world that I can point to, because the closest thing to capitalism that still exists is the illicit drug trade.  State capitalism isn't capitalism, it's merely a soft form of national socialism.

I know the word was coined by Karl Marx,  I've read his works (if you didn't notice, I did state that economically I am a Marxist)  Capitalism is not free trade. Capitalism is control of the means of production and the products created by those means by those with capital.  That's not free, it's a particular type of control.

I hate to turn around the words that were used on me, but you might do well to read the works you are criticizing.  Especially if you are going to proclaim yourself in support of a word defined by those works.  I'd suggest Das Kapital.

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January 28, 2011, 11:31:15 AM
 #75


I'm not a Moderator or a Hero Member, but aren't you all off-topic for this thread?  I just want to know if anyone is still interested in starting an Austrian economic study group.

gene
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January 28, 2011, 12:30:38 PM
 #76

I like Mises' somewhat odd definition of democracy, 'secession down to the level of the individual'. Then, we don't have full-frontal majoritarianism in these places we say have "democracy". Following democracy-worship and various collectivist ideologies to their conclusion gets pretty absurd. Democratic republics are pretty much just a blip on the map of history so far and seem doomed to failure to me. What we have in this type of "democracy" is a popularity contest for "our" rulers. The economic consequences of this nice-sounding doctrine are laid out nicely in Hoppe's Democracy the God that Failed, which I highly recommend to those interested. You did read this one eh gene and Baby? I mean, I'm not pointing out your ignorance to prove anything, just saying that it is apparent from what you are writing and I don't really care.

The other error I noticed skimming through here is covered in Long's Response to 10 Objections. See #8 "the rich will rule", a statist fav, yawn.

As before, I will mention that none of your arguments or references are particularly clever or original; I have heard and considered them, with some small variations, over the course of decades.

You give the terrible impression of someone who hasn't taken time to notice fundamental incongruities in your ideological framework. None of the various academics and intellectuals advocating anarcho-capitalism have been able to demonstrate how the elimination of a democratic state could lead to a situation in which singular control over a valuable resource is to be avoided. This is a rather heavy burden of proof, which I suspect cannot be satisfied. None of the posts by the impressively well-read anarcho-capitalists here even attempt to address this issue.

Here is an example, from your reference:

Quote
Whereas, if you were the head of some private protection agency and I'm trying to get you to do something that costs a million dollars, I'd have to bribe you more than a million.

It is trivial to propose a realistic case for which this is untrue, although I suppose it depends if "the market" thinks that feeding my family is worth "more than a million [dollars]." Control over a critical resource does not require the intervention of any particular kind of state and will give rise to some new form of tyranny. It is embarrassing to have to even point this out.


I love this part:

Quote
Well, could [cartel collusion] happen? Sure. All kinds of things could happen. Half the country could commit suicide tomorrow.

A philosopher employing a sophism. How quaint.

Quote
That doesn't mean that it's impossible that a cartel succeed. After all, people have free will. But it's unlikely because the very incentives that lead you to form the cartel also lead you to cheat on it — because it's always in the interest of anyone to make agreements outside the cartel once they are in it.

Yet cartels exist today.

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gene
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January 28, 2011, 12:34:53 PM
 #77


I'm not a Moderator or a Hero Member, but aren't you all off-topic for this thread?  I just want to know if anyone is still interested in starting an Austrian economic study group.



I am offering a critique of the Austrian school of economics. Does this not qualify?

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January 28, 2011, 01:10:48 PM
 #78


I'm not a Moderator or a Hero Member, but aren't you all off-topic for this thread?  I just want to know if anyone is still interested in starting an Austrian economic study group.



I am offering a critique of the Austrian school of economics. Does this not qualify?

Not if you don't know what you are trying to critique.  And complaints about various political ideologies is a weak critique of an economic theory.  You have pulled this thread way off topic.  Go start your own tread elsewhere so that the rest of us can properly ignore you.  Also, you keep saying that it is trivial to prove us wrong.  If it's trivial, why don't you actually offer evidence in support of your positions?

"The powers of financial capitalism had another far-reaching aim, nothing less than to create a world system of financial control in private hands able to dominate the political system of each country and the economy of the world as a whole. This system was to be controlled in a feudalist fashion by the central banks of the world acting in concert, by secret agreements arrived at in frequent meetings and conferences. The apex of the systems was to be the Bank for International Settlements in Basel, Switzerland, a private bank owned and controlled by the world's central banks which were themselves private corporations. Each central bank...sought to dominate its government by its ability to control Treasury loans, to manipulate foreign exchanges, to influence the level of economic activity in the country, and to influence cooperative politicians by subsequent economic rewards in the business world."

- Carroll Quigley, CFR member, mentor to Bill Clinton, from 'Tragedy And Hope'
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January 28, 2011, 01:18:31 PM
 #79


I'm not a Moderator or a Hero Member, but aren't you all off-topic for this thread?  I just want to know if anyone is still interested in starting an Austrian economic study group.



I am offering a critique of the Austrian school of economics. Does this not qualify?

Not really, no.  The original proposal was to read books and discuss them.  Are you interested?
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January 28, 2011, 01:28:59 PM
 #80


Assuming that I have not read these books does no credit to your arguement.  I'm not a statist, I am an anti-capitalist only in that I am opposed to state power and do not see capitalism being possible without state protection of capital.


Then you do not understand what capitalism actually is.  The word, ironicly, was coined by Karl Marx.  He made it and 'ism' because he wanted to paint it as an ideology.  It's not an ideology, it's a collective description of the free exchanges of individuals within a working free market.  There is no example of true capitalism anywhere in the world that I can point to, because the closest thing to capitalism that still exists is the illicit drug trade.  State capitalism isn't capitalism, it's merely a soft form of national socialism.

I know the word was coined by Karl Marx,  I've read his works (if you didn't notice, I did state that economically I am a Marxist)  Capitalism is not free trade. Capitalism is control of the means of production and the products created by those means by those with capital.  That's not free, it's a particular type of control.

The right to keep what you produce is a fundamental human right.  It may be control, but no one else loses any honest freedoms when the owner does what he will with his own property.  There is no such thing as collective property, even in the former USSR the trucks may have been bought by the government, but the drivers held *possession*.  Real capitalism existed in the USSR, it exists everywhere, because it's not an ideology.

When you boil it down, there are only two laws of civilization...

"Do all that you have agreed to do, and do not encroach on another's person or property."  (Mayberry's Laws)

This is the whole of the law.   Notice, also, that these are laws concerning individuals, not all of society.  Ideologies aside, any society that generally honors and supports these two laws, tends to prosper.  Yet, once a society no longer honors these two laws, it tends to decline.  They are not absolutes, and can be violated often before the society begins to show it's rot, but they never will be denied.  Marxism cannot exist, simply because it fails to honor these two laws.  Democracy fails this test also.  Capitalism, even as defined in the context of control of the means of production, does not neccessarily violate these laws.

"The powers of financial capitalism had another far-reaching aim, nothing less than to create a world system of financial control in private hands able to dominate the political system of each country and the economy of the world as a whole. This system was to be controlled in a feudalist fashion by the central banks of the world acting in concert, by secret agreements arrived at in frequent meetings and conferences. The apex of the systems was to be the Bank for International Settlements in Basel, Switzerland, a private bank owned and controlled by the world's central banks which were themselves private corporations. Each central bank...sought to dominate its government by its ability to control Treasury loans, to manipulate foreign exchanges, to influence the level of economic activity in the country, and to influence cooperative politicians by subsequent economic rewards in the business world."

- Carroll Quigley, CFR member, mentor to Bill Clinton, from 'Tragedy And Hope'
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