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Author Topic: Objections to the non-aggression principle  (Read 5220 times)
chrisrico
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February 20, 2012, 10:13:46 PM
 #41

chrisrico - the reason the state is tied up in regulations as to how it uses violence is that within its borders, there is only 1 law.

I believe you are incorrect. First, there is not "one law". The law is constantly changing and is subject to jurisdictional dispute. I will give you that with states, there is ultimately a final authority on law in a given region, but would you want a final authority on any other good or service in a region? That's called a monopoly, and most people recognize that they provide poor quality service. Second, the state is "tied up" in regulations of its own making. Those regulations could disappear in an instant if the state wanted badly enough to violate them. For example, take a look at the recent murder of a United States citizen by his own government. Citizens are forbidden from learning the legal justification under which any of them might be summarily killed, because it is a state secret.

Remove the state and you have no one single law.  So every dispute will require violence.

How do you come to this conclusion? There is no "single law" for the entire world, and almost all disputes are resolved peacefully. Almost all of the most violently resolved disputes are between governments. Does that speak nothing to you?

Please understand, I do not advocate for a stateless society in which every individual acts like a state. I merely believe that most individuals will generally prefer to solve problems non-violently, and this tendency is suppressed when immersed in a culture which celebrates the use of violence. I believe the state, as a fundamentally violent institution, provides such a culture.
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February 20, 2012, 10:23:17 PM
 #42

chrisrico - the reason the state is tied up in regulations as to how it uses violence is that within its borders, there is only 1 law.

I believe you are incorrect. First, there is not "one law". The law is constantly changing and is subject to jurisdictional dispute. I will give you that with states, there is ultimately a final authority on law in a given region, but would you want a final authority on any other good or service in a region? That's called a monopoly, and most people recognize that they provide poor quality service. Second, the state is "tied up" in regulations of its own making. Those regulations could disappear in an instant if the state wanted badly enough to violate them. For example, take a look at the recent murder of a United States citizen by his own government. Citizens are forbidden from learning the legal justification under which any of them might be summarily killed, because it is a state secret.

Remove the state and you have no one single law.  So every dispute will require violence.

How do you come to this conclusion? There is no "single law" for the entire world, and almost all disputes are resolved peacefully. Almost all of the most violently resolved disputes are between governments. Does that speak nothing to you?

Please understand, I do not advocate for a stateless society in which every individual acts like a state. I merely believe that most individuals will generally prefer to solve problems non-violently, and this tendency is suppressed when immersed in a culture which celebrates the use of violence. I believe the state, as a fundamentally violent institution, to provide such a culture.

You are contradicting yourself.

1. As you said, there is 1 final authority on law.  Thats one law.  Why call it anything else?
2. Monopolies are not always inefficient.  They work well for things like health and defence.  In fact, I don't know of any health or defence system worth having that isn't monopoly based.  
3. Disputes are resolved peacefully when the cost of violence is too high.  Events like the invasions of Poland and Iraq show you what happens when you don't have legal protection and the other party sees little cost to attacking you.

And this is my problem with the NAP.  It doesn't allow for people who are plain aggressive and outgun you.  And it doesn't allow you to create monopolies where needed or to raise taxes.  It doesn't allow for creation of property rights.  Even simple things, like for example, to build a road requires compulsory purchase.  NAP advocates say this means no new roads.  I don't see that as a good thing.

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February 21, 2012, 05:03:06 AM
 #43

So wrong you are. Nations in our world analogize very accurately to individuals in your NAP world.

Are you claiming that in a stateless society that values the NAP, all individuals will feel they have the right to initiate violence against any other individual? What?

How is such a question relevant? First of all, I made no such claim. Secondly, I did in fact claim that you can't presuppose that a stateless society would value the NAP, thus the point of our discussion is for you to demonstrate that a stateless society would universally adopt the NAP. You're getting absolutely nowhere by trying to argue for the existence of a scenario by presupposing it.
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February 21, 2012, 12:55:46 PM
 #44

Nations in our world analogize very accurately to individuals in your NAP world.

Nations, definitely not.
Governments, in some senses, related to sovereignty, perhaps. But you should never forget that individuals in a free society would not be able to force millions of others to pay for their expenses. It's much easier to do stupid things or violent wars when you're not paying the bill. The decision makers in governments barely need to bother in making bad decisions, while a free individual would internalize all of his costs.

And by the way, if even governments, which don't pay the true price for they actions, manage to solve most of their disagreements diplomatically, it makes no sense thinking sovereign individuals would live in constant war. Logic and history show otherwise. (medieval Ireland, for instance, had less and smaller wars than continental Europe in the same period).

Also, if you realize that governments are in anarchy in relation to each other, and if you support the (wrong) idea that a ultimate decision maker is imperative for society organization, than the only logical conclusion is that you support the abomination of a World Government... do you?
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February 21, 2012, 01:00:17 PM
 #45

You still have the basic problem.  No laws means gang law.

"Gang law" is exactly what we live in today. The strongest armed group of a territory imposes its law through coercion. That's precisely what libertarians are against.
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February 21, 2012, 02:34:59 PM
 #46

You still have the basic problem.  No laws means gang law.

"Gang law" is exactly what we live in today. The strongest armed group of a territory imposes its law through coercion. That's precisely what libertarians are against.

A state with a monopoly on violence, with its ability to exercise force subject to democratic control, is preferable to being subject to the whims of gang law or mob rule where violence is meted out as and when a gangster feels like it.

We already know you oppose democracy - what you are failing to do is offer something better. 

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February 21, 2012, 04:53:20 PM
 #47

THE LAW

Men, Women, Agent(s), Person(s), and Life collectively or individually have synonymous equivalent meaning herein. De facto entrusted crucially dependent Life admits safe guardianship or conveyance thereto.
1.   All men are equal in Rights.
  1.1.   All men are intrinsically free, whose expression when manifest, admits autonomy.
  1.2.   Rights exist because man exists (consequent to Life).
  1.3.   Rights are inalienable and inherent, hence discovered not created.
  1.4.   Man commits autonomous choices apart from all other men.
2.   Rights are defined as the Liberty to control, secure and defend one’s Property and Life.
3.   Liberty consists in the freedom to do everything not in violation of other’s Rights.
4.   Rights Violations are unprovoked physical aggressions (UPAs) initiated by man against another, or Breaches of Contract (BOCs), resulting in an incontrovertible diminishment in one’s Rights.
  4.1.   UPAs are non-consenting acts which cause an Object (Property or Life) to undergo a transferred or transformed change to the Object’s original energy state or condition.
  4.2.   Energy transfer to/from an Object or energy transformation of the Object occurs by means of three ways, namely: thermodynamic work, heat transfer, or mass transfer.
  4.3.   Contracts are compulsory promissory agreements involving Property or Life (and specific performances or forbearances therewith) between mutually consenting men.
  4.4.   Misrepresentation of Contract obligations or BOCs resulting in misappropriation of Property or Life, or expenditures related thereto, is subject to Rights Violations.
5.   Property can be anything comprised of physical material matter (PMM).
6.    Property is the exclusive non-simultaneous possession or dominion of discrete PMM.
  6.1.   Unconstrained/non-delimited/uncontrolled PMM (UPMM), UPMM effusions or energy transmissions, are not Property; they are ownerless nonexclusive UPMM or Emissions thereof, until physically made to become otherwise.
  6.2.   A Property’s inertial reference frame, dimensions, Emissions/Emitters, usage and genesis thereof, define and constitute its Property Scope Ambit (PSA).
  6.3.   PSAs that initiate tangible material perturbations which intersect or preclude another’s preexisting or antecedent PSAs may be subject to Rights Violations.
6.4.   Preexisting antecedent unconstrained Emitters cannot proscribe the receipt of similar, both in magnitude and direction, intersecting Emissions Flux.
  6.5.   Property cannot transform into something extracorporeal, extrinsic or compulsory due to the manipulation or interpretation of its PMM composition.
  6.6.   Absent Contract and Force, Property or Life of one man shall not control, compel or impede Property or Life of another.
  6.7.   Unintentional personal ingress vouchsafes unimpeded passage and egress.
7.   Force is the means –proportionate to the aggression– to obstruct, inhibit or extirpate the Rights of any man who interferes with or imminently threatens the Rights of other men.
  7.1.   Force can only be applied to resolve Rights Violations and is consequently just.
  7.2.   Man, or an Agent to man, must ascertain that a Rights Violation has occurred.
  7.3.   Man is severally liable and accountable for solely his Rights Violations a posteriori.
8.   Justice, viz., lawfulness effectuates disjunctive Rights between men.
9.    That which is neither just nor lawful is Violence and imperils the Rights of man.
10.   Violence causes inequality (unequal in Rights of man) and is forbidden.

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February 21, 2012, 06:36:23 PM
 #48

Fred, why not make a thread where your effort to create your own law can be discussed? 

I can see its been revised and improved it over the first draft I saw; is this something you created yourself?

FredericBastiat
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February 21, 2012, 07:01:15 PM
 #49

Fred, why not make a thread where your effort to create your own law can be discussed? 

I can see its been revised and improved it over the first draft I saw; is this something you created yourself?

It is my writing. I wouldn't call it my creation per se. I claim the word combinations but none of the individual concepts.

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FredericBastiat
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February 21, 2012, 07:12:17 PM
 #50

I disagree with the use of the word "Violence" in 9 and 10.

Would you not agree though that the opposite of lawfulness and justice would be violence at least in the context of the aforementioned definitions? As in things that are unjust and unlawful are violent, and if they are not violent, then they may be a "crime" without a victim, and therefore not "criminal" to begin with? Or at least not a proportional punishment/force/response relative to the measure of the physical aggressive acts themselves.

I'm interested in proportionality of punishment, restitution and marginal deterrence, and thus any response in excess of the "crime" committed is "unfairly" disproportionate and unwarranted. It would appear we have many laws that meet this description. We make criminals out of relatively ordinary people.

It's very difficult to make a statement/definition maintain it's truthfullness and conciseness without some context.

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February 21, 2012, 08:19:40 PM
 #51

Fred, why not make a thread where your effort to create your own law can be discussed? 

I can see its been revised and improved it over the first draft I saw; is this something you created yourself?

It is my writing. I wouldn't call it my creation per se. I claim the word combinations but none of the individual concepts.

Quote
1.2.   Rights exist because man exists (consequent to Life).

1.2 is an assertion that everyone can make their own version of.  For example, I see your compatriot Rick Santorum saying that rights come from God and that the Constitution merely frames them.  Marxists would say rights come from dialectal materialism and so on.

Is it your position that rights are simply rules that we assert and that everyone has his own set of rights to assert?



FredericBastiat
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February 21, 2012, 08:44:03 PM
 #52

1.2 is an assertion that everyone can make their own version of.  For example, I see your compatriot Rick Santorum saying that rights come from God and that the Constitution merely frames them.  Marxists would say rights come from dialectal materialism and so on.

Is it your position that rights are simply rules that we assert and that everyone has his own set of rights to assert?

Sure, to an extent (these are 'is/ought' philosophies after all). The only caveat being that it not infringe upon others from doing the same (equivalent supremacy to act or to own). Which is to say, you can act upon yourself and your things, but not upon others without their express permission. This assumes there is some tangible distinction between what is yours, mine, and ours (in the contractual sense of the word).

A reasoned and logical definition using physical descriptions of discernably separable and divisible objects (aka physical property) is helpful. And anything that makes it difficult to separate these concerns (reified concepts, or unconstrainable spaces and objects) results in things that are either not possessable, or in the commons -which might create potential conflict- conflict best avoided I would think.

Simply speaking if I may, it would seem an excellent ideal that your assertions shouldn't violate my assertions otherwise they aren't valid assertions (unless you believe might makes right). In which case, who needs laws, or property, or justice?

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February 21, 2012, 08:52:05 PM
 #53

1.2 is an assertion that everyone can make their own version of.  For example, I see your compatriot Rick Santorum saying that rights come from God and that the Constitution merely frames them.  Marxists would say rights come from dialectal materialism and so on.

Is it your position that rights are simply rules that we assert and that everyone has his own set of rights to assert?

Sure, to an extent (these are 'is/ought' philosophies after all). The only caveat being that it not infringe upon others from doing the same (equivalent supremacy to act or to own). Which is to say, you can act upon yourself and your things, but not upon others without their express permission. This assumes there is some tangible distinction between what is yours, mine, and ours (in the contractual sense of the word).

A reasoned and logical definition using physical descriptions of discernably separable and divisible objects (aka physical property) is helpful. And anything that makes it difficult to separate these concerns (reified concepts, or unconstrainable spaces and objects) results in things that are either not possessable, or in the commons -which might create potential conflict- conflict best avoided I would think.

Simply speaking if I may, it would seem an excellent ideal that your assertions shouldn't violate my assertions otherwise they aren't valid assertions (unless you believe might makes right). In which case, who needs laws, or property, or justice?

Are you really saying that we all get to assert our own ideas about rights but all the ones that you don't agree with are not valid?


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February 21, 2012, 11:57:28 PM
 #54

Are you really saying that we all get to assert our own ideas about rights but all the ones that you don't agree with are not valid?

No. Just saying that you can assert any right/idea/liberty, of which there are an infinite number, in such a way that doesn't willfully impart a significant force (F = ma) or change the condition of my person or things, since increasing or decreasing the mass or energy of the system of my person/property may be interpreted as aggression.  To wit, don't violate 4.1 or 4.2 and we should be just dandy. It explains it quite concisely and uses physics constructs to boot. Cool huh?

I can dislike your assertions all I want, but merely disliking them isn't sufficient justification to prevent you from exercising them (lawfully proscribe). It's only when they affect me significantly (using the laws of physics to measure them) that we might have an issue.

Of course, everything we do imparts some change in other objects in the universe and vice versa, but how much, where, and with what intent, matters. Whatdya say we keep the unwarranted physical intersections to a minimum; and when we can't find a way to resolve them, try to apply the least amount of violence?

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February 22, 2012, 07:41:14 AM
 #55

Are you really saying that we all get to assert our own ideas about rights but all the ones that you don't agree with are not valid?

No. Just saying that you can assert any right/idea/liberty, of which there are an infinite number, in such a way that doesn't willfully impart a significant force (F = ma) or change the condition of my person or things, since increasing or decreasing the mass or energy of the system of my person/property may be interpreted as aggression.  To wit, don't violate 4.1 or 4.2 and we should be just dandy. It explains it quite concisely and uses physics constructs to boot. Cool huh?

I can dislike your assertions all I want, but merely disliking them isn't sufficient justification to prevent you from exercising them (lawfully proscribe). It's only when they affect me significantly (using the laws of physics to measure them) that we might have an issue.

Of course, everything we do imparts some change in other objects in the universe and vice versa, but how much, where, and with what intent, matters. Whatdya say we keep the unwarranted physical intersections to a minimum; and when we can't find a way to resolve them, try to apply the least amount of violence?

The physics thing is odd. 

You are still saying that your rights are better than other people's so they should accept your rules are better.  For example, I can say that property rights are a human creation and that they are used to make a more stable prosperous society.  You can say that God made the rights or whatever and that all we can hope to do is discover them.  Do my property rights have equal value to yours?

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February 22, 2012, 02:56:12 PM
 #56

So funny. For about the hundredth time in about the past six months, who exactly agrees that you may use proportional force? What if your neighbor doesn't buy into NAP?

Then either the neighbor believes one of two things:

1. He can use aggression whenever he wants but nobody can use aggression against him.
2. Anybody can use aggression on anyone at anytime.

If he believes (1) then he's just trying to set a double standard for himself and his wishes have no merit. If he believes (2) then he can't consistently object to anything I do to him, including responding proportionally when using violence.
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February 22, 2012, 03:15:08 PM
 #57

So funny. For about the hundredth time in about the past six months, who exactly agrees that you may use proportional force? What if your neighbor doesn't buy into NAP?

Then either the neighbor believes one of two things:

1. He can use aggression whenever he wants but nobody can use aggression against him.
2. Anybody can use aggression on anyone at anytime.

If he believes (1) then he's just trying to set a double standard for himself and his wishes have no merit. If he believes (2) then he can't consistently object to anything I do to him, including responding proportionally when using violence.

There are lots of people in category 1.  Charismatic individuals who have followers and thus unless you have an army, you can't do a thing to him.

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February 22, 2012, 03:43:33 PM
 #58

So funny. For about the hundredth time in about the past six months, who exactly agrees that you may use proportional force? What if your neighbor doesn't buy into NAP?

Then either the neighbor believes one of two things:

1. He can use aggression whenever he wants but nobody can use aggression against him.
2. Anybody can use aggression on anyone at anytime.

If he believes (1) then he's just trying to set a double standard for himself and his wishes have no merit. If he believes (2) then he can't consistently object to anything I do to him, including responding proportionally when using violence.

There are lots of people in category 1.  Charismatic individuals who have followers and thus unless you have an army, you can't do a thing to him.

Oh, the fact that we are "hostages" to authoritarian people like you, we already know very well.

All we can do is complain, argue, try to move to less authoritarian places, try to support ideas/projects that might reduce the power of such people (like bitcoin, seasteading, Free cities etc) and so on.
I have no hope - and I believe most libertarians neither - of ever become a truly sovereign individual. Maybe in a very distant future that will be a possibility, but we'll be all dead by then. I have much less hope of ever seeing a world without intentional murders. That does not mean I will support a "minimum rate of murders" because "it has always existed", "society can't be organized without it" etc.
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February 22, 2012, 03:56:23 PM
 #59

So funny. For about the hundredth time in about the past six months, who exactly agrees that you may use proportional force? What if your neighbor doesn't buy into NAP?

Then either the neighbor believes one of two things:

1. He can use aggression whenever he wants but nobody can use aggression against him.
2. Anybody can use aggression on anyone at anytime.

If he believes (1) then he's just trying to set a double standard for himself and his wishes have no merit. If he believes (2) then he can't consistently object to anything I do to him, including responding proportionally when using violence.

There are lots of people in category 1.  Charismatic individuals who have followers and thus unless you have an army, you can't do a thing to him.

Oh, the fact that we are "hostages" to authoritarian people like you, we already know very well.

All we can do is complain, argue, try to move to less authoritarian places, try to support ideas/projects that might reduce the power of such people (like bitcoin, seasteading, Free cities etc) and so on.
I have no hope - and I believe most libertarians neither - of ever become a truly sovereign individual. Maybe in a very distant future that will be a possibility, but we'll be all dead by then. I have much less hope of ever seeing a world without intentional murders. That does not mean I will support a "minimum rate of murders" because "it has always existed", "society can't be organized without it" etc.

If I might offer an analogy, its not enough to say the roof on a house is leaky; you have to offer a way to fix it or a way to replace it with a better roof.  You rightly point out that modern societies are not perfect.  The problem is that you don't offer an alternative that is better.

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February 22, 2012, 04:38:11 PM
 #60

If I might offer an analogy, its not enough to say the roof on a house is leaky; you have to offer a way to fix it or a way to replace it with a better roof.  You rightly point out that modern societies are not perfect.  The problem is that you don't offer an alternative that is better.

Unfortunately for you, repeating the same thing over and over doesn't make it true.

The alternative we offer is a society organized from the bottom-up. I'm sorry that you are unable to wrap your mind around that.

Let me offer an analogy for why your criticism is flawed. In the time when slavery was a widespread institution, it was a valid criticism to say that slavery should be abolished, even if you did not offer any alternative to how the things slaves did would get done. In the same way, anarchists of various stripes say that the state should be abolished, even though we do not (and cannot) tell you exactly how the things government does will be accomplished. To think that one person or one small group could tell you that is the pretense of knowledge, and is one of the reasons that centralized institutions like states fail at their goals.
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