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Author Topic: An Anti-Libertarian FAQ Worth Talking About?  (Read 11449 times)
kiba
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February 15, 2011, 01:58:26 AM
 #41

I guess this is what I mean about not living in the real world. In the real world people with power tend to screw over people who don't have it. In the real world wealth is not distributed to people entirely on their merits. In the real world inequality means a great deal, especially if you happen to be born, live, and die on the less equal side of the railway tracks.
We libertarians are very familiar with regulatory capture as it is our bread and butter. It is not a surprise that when we analyze democracies that we find perverse incentives.

What people usually done is to forsake their long term interest in favor of assured short term survival. That is how free markets die. It also can happen to anybody, rich or poor.

You could be a lowly prison guard part of an industry whom interests are aligned with keeping people in jail. That benefit the whole hierarchy of prison complex, not just the rich CEO on the top. However, everybody suffers in the long run, even the lowly prison guard, because prison breed criminality.
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I guess when all you have is laissez-faire capitialism everything starts to look like a market nail. It's this simple and elegant theory that you can apply to all sorts of incredibly complex problems and magically the invisible hand of the market will descend down from supply & demand heaven (likely on wires like some kind of hideous broadway show deus ex machina) and fix everything.

This argument is not much of merit. Please discuss example.

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February 15, 2011, 02:07:54 AM
 #42

If you please your customers you will make money .

Why should you be punished because you serve your customers too well ?

 
Quip
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February 15, 2011, 03:55:22 AM
 #43

I agree 100% with this.

Libertarianism vs. Statism isn't a debate that needs to occur. Anarchy is wrong and so is Facism. Good governments strike a balance and focus on the other axis of the political diamond: liberalism versus conservatism.

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kiba
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February 15, 2011, 03:58:20 AM
 #44

I agree 100% with this.

Libertarianism vs. Statism isn't a debate that needs to occur. Anarchy is wrong and so is Facism. Good governments strike a balance and focus on the other axis of the political diamond: liberalism versus conservatism.

Non-argument. You need to justify them.

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February 15, 2011, 03:58:43 AM
 #45

Anarchy is wrong and so is Facism.

Guess which half of this I vehemently disagree with?
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February 15, 2011, 04:16:20 AM
 #46

All I'm saying is that when you take things to extremes, bad things tend to happen. A little less law is a good thing, but never none at all.

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kiba
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February 15, 2011, 04:36:22 AM
 #47

All I'm saying is that when you take things to extremes, bad things tend to happen. A little less law is a good thing, but never none at all.

You need to justify your position instead of sayings stuff that sound true.

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February 15, 2011, 05:16:16 AM
 #48

I'm not trying to make an argument, I'm just telling you guys what I think. I don't need to justify my opinion unless I'm trying to convince someone to agree with me.

I'll try to stay out of threads like this on the future.

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BitterTea
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February 15, 2011, 05:50:16 AM
 #49

I'm not trying to make an argument, I'm just telling you guys what I think. I don't need to justify my opinion unless I'm trying to convince someone to agree with me.

I'll try to stay out of threads like this on the future.
If that's the case, I'd recommend attempting to communicate this in a different manner. Rather than stating "A little less law is a good thing, but never none at all.", you could have said "I find a little less law more palatable, but not no law at all". I've recently been trying to retrain myself to think more along the lines of E-Prime. I find it tends to decrease the amount of negative reactions to opinions, when it seems clear that is what I am expressing.
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February 15, 2011, 06:04:47 AM
 #50

Thanks for that. I believe that following your advice may reduce stress in my daily life.

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February 15, 2011, 09:52:35 AM
 #51

All I'm saying is that when you take things to extremes, bad things tend to happen.

You sound like an extremist yourself. A balance extremist.

I believe that balance and moderation is a good strategy in some areas of life, but that absolutism (I prefer to call it consistency) is a preferrable strategy in other ares of life.  

For instance, I am an extreme and absolute in my views on slavery.

If I was alive in 1800 I would have argued that slavery should be abolished altogether.  Many of my contemporaries from the moderation camp would called my views absurd, unrealistic, utopian, dangerous and so on.  They would have argued for "balanced" solutions such as giving slaves more rights or reducing the number of slaves, or trying to find a compromise between slaves and slave owners.  Now in hindsight it turns out they were wrong. The "extreme" solution of abolition was indeed the best for everybody in the long term.

Well, you are probably an absolutist too on this issue, so I take back what I said Smiley

Maybe 100 years from now people will look back at us and say "I can't believe this was acceptable back then, even just in moderation!".  Maybe government as we know it is one of those things.


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A little less law is a good thing, but never none at all.

Anarchy doesn't mean no law at all. It means that laws emerge spontaneously rathen than being dictated top-down, at least that's what anarchists believe.

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marcus_of_augustus
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February 15, 2011, 11:09:33 AM
 #52

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Anarchy doesn't mean no law it all. It means that laws emerge spontaneously rather than being dictated top-down, at least that's what anarchists believe.

Hmmm, there must be different flavours of Anarchists springing up.

The Emergent Behaviour (some law and order) Anarchists vs. the Mad Max (no law or order) Anarchists?

Then there's the definitional vacuum left by "top and bottom", being relative terms depending on your scale of the community generating the law and order. Family, tribe, clan, village, county, city, state, nation, etc?

There's what's right and then there's what's wrong and then there is just what is.

"Let me issue and control a nation's money and I care not who writes the laws."
- Mayer Amschel Rothschild, 1790

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February 15, 2011, 12:34:27 PM
 #53

Spontaneous order anarchists ?

 Smiley
hugolp
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February 15, 2011, 02:19:19 PM
 #54

All I'm saying is that when you take things to extremes, bad things tend to happen. A little less law is a good thing, but never none at all.

Right. I guess that when people were debating about slavery, you would not have sided in favor of ending slavery completely because it was too extreme. Lets just stay in the middel and defend a bit of slavery, otherwise you would be defending an extreme option and "bad things tend to happen".

The idea that the center point is the right answer is not only ridiculous, but also depends on how you focus the debate. Its basically nonsense.
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February 15, 2011, 07:41:04 PM
 #55

We libertarians are very familiar with regulatory capture as it is our bread and butter. It is not a surprise that when we analyze democracies that we find perverse incentives.

What people usually done is to forsake their long term interest in favor of assured short term survival. That is how free markets die. It also can happen to anybody, rich or poor.

You could be a lowly prison guard part of an industry whom interests are aligned with keeping people in jail. That benefit the whole hierarchy of prison complex, not just the rich CEO on the top. However, everybody suffers in the long run, even the lowly prison guard, because prison breed criminality.

This argument is not much of merit. Please discuss example.

I am unclear how the example would be "solved" under a freemarket system. The profit motive contains all kinds of perverse incentives, even in a perfect market with perfectly rational self-interested agents under perfect conditions. If you can screw other people over at less cost than profit to yourself you certainly have an incentive to do so.

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dirtyfilthy
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February 15, 2011, 07:45:42 PM
 #56

If you please your customers you will make money .

Why should you be punished because you serve your customers too well ?

 

And happily what's in the best interests of business is always in the best interests of consumers? Sure, sometimes businesses make money by offering the best product at the lowest prices, and sometimes they make money by exploiting people and leveraging power differentials, and sometimes they make money by engaging in deceptive and immoral (though not illegal) practices, and sometimes business make money by utilizing externalities they haven't paid for. And often it's some kind of mutant hybrid of columns A,B,C,D

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ribuck
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February 15, 2011, 08:11:45 PM
 #57

If you can screw other people over at less cost than profit to yourself you certainly have an incentive to do so.
The ability to "screw" your customers tends to reduce to zero in a free market, if only because any customer that is being screwed can "cross sides" and become a supplier instead.

If your baker is screwing you, you set up a rival bakery next door and make a killing. Of course, not everyone wants to become a baker, but you only need one person willing to do it to make the existing baker reluctant to "screw" people.
BitterTea
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February 15, 2011, 08:25:49 PM
 #58

The ability to "screw" your customers tends to reduce to zero in a free market, if only because any customer that is being screwed can "cross sides" and become a supplier instead.

Exactly. Of course, this system breaks down when the person doing the screwing has lobbied the local, state, or federal government to increase the licensing requirements.
dirtyfilthy
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February 15, 2011, 08:27:22 PM
 #59

If you can screw other people over at less cost than profit to yourself you certainly have an incentive to do so.
The ability to "screw" your customers tends to reduce to zero in a free market, if only because any customer that is being screwed can "cross sides" and become a supplier instead.

If your baker is screwing you, you set up a rival bakery next door and make a killing. Of course, not everyone wants to become a baker, but you only need one person willing to do it to make the existing baker reluctant to "screw" people.

Um... what? There are plenty of businesses RIGHT NOW that exist through screwing people over. Are you trying to say these business only exist because of government intervention?

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dirtyfilthy
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February 15, 2011, 08:28:57 PM
 #60

The ability to "screw" your customers tends to reduce to zero in a free market, if only because any customer that is being screwed can "cross sides" and become a supplier instead.

Exactly. Of course, this system breaks down when the person doing the screwing has lobbied the local, state, or federal government to increase the licensing requirements.

That's ridiculous. Does nepotism and kickbacks exist in local and national government? Of course. Is this the only way businesses screw people over? Of course not.

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