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Other => Off Topic => Topic started by: Libertea on August 29, 2016, 04:56:57 PM

Title: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Libertea on August 29, 2016, 04:56:57 PM
I don't mean just out of disgust for the current "choices" being offered by the major political parties.  I want to know who else here holds general libertarian beliefs (i.e., supports less government involvement in our lives both socially and fiscally)?  Membership in the capital L Libertarian party is not required in order to give an affirmative answer to this question!
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Frugalicious on August 29, 2016, 05:37:40 PM
Me!

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Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Spork on August 29, 2016, 05:39:27 PM
Present.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: katsiki on August 29, 2016, 05:48:59 PM
Me.  Still hoping for the 4 years of Ron Paul that this country needs.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Rufus.T.Firefly on August 29, 2016, 05:54:31 PM
While no party fully represents my positions, the Libertarian party is the most close reflection.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: LeRainDrop on August 29, 2016, 06:04:00 PM
I hold general libertarian beliefs.  Anecdotally, what I've been seeing among many of my friends around my age (let's say 30 to 38) who had been involved with College Republicans is that we've increasingly grown less comfortable standing by the party using government to advance socially-conservative/religious beliefs.  We never really liked that to begin with, but it seemed to be something we kinda put aside in favor of supporting their other policies.  The current dichotomy of Trump/Clinton has perhaps catalyzed many of us to finally break from the Republican party and say, hey, that's not really what we stand for!  We don't have to choose one of the "two parties."
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Libertea on August 29, 2016, 06:32:22 PM
Me.  Still hoping for the 4 years of Ron Paul that this country needs.
I like him too, but he's in his 80s, and I don't think that's ever going to happen unless we can turn back the clock twenty years.  Maybe we will have better luck with Rand in the future....

I hold general libertarian beliefs.  Anecdotally, what I've been seeing among many of my friends around my age (let's say 30 to 38) who had been involved with College Republicans is that we've increasingly grown less comfortable standing by the party using government to advance socially-conservative/religious beliefs.  We never really liked that to begin with, but it seemed to be something we kinda put aside in favor of supporting their other policies.  The current dichotomy of Trump/Clinton has perhaps catalyzed many of us to finally break from the Republican party and say, hey, that's not really what we stand for!  We don't have to choose one of the "two parties."
I'm a little older than you (early 40s), but I basically feel the same way.  I have voted capital L Libertarian before, but this year I actually donated money to Gary Johnson's campaign, which I have never done before to any political candidate.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on August 29, 2016, 06:37:09 PM
A year or two ago, I'd have said a definite yes.

But now, I'm less and less Libertarian as the years go on (mostly due to the hardcore nuts online who put forth too extreme of a view with no room for compromise), but I still identify as mostly libertarian and there's no other party I could identify with.

I'd guess I'll eventually identify as non-partisan, but we'll see.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Financial.Velociraptor on August 29, 2016, 06:39:45 PM
Lib as far as they are influenced by Smith and Hayek.  The ones who are influenced by Ayn Rand trouble me deeply.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Libertea on August 29, 2016, 06:41:21 PM
A year or two ago, I'd have said a definite yes.

But now, I'm less and less Libertarian as the years go on (mostly due to the hardcore nuts online who put forth too extreme of a view with no room for compromise), but I still identify as mostly libertarian and there's no other party I could identify with.

I'd guess I'll eventually identify as non-partisan, but we'll see.
Yeah, but all the parties have their whack jobs.  There's no escaping them.  Still, that's a big reason why I wouldn't call myself a capital L Libertarian also.  (I'm actually registered as a Republican, but that's mostly because I live in a closed-primary state.  I proudly admit to being a RINO.)
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on August 29, 2016, 06:44:20 PM
Lib as far as they are influenced by Smith and Hayek.  The ones who are influenced by Ayn Rand trouble me deeply.

Indeed.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Tom Bri on August 29, 2016, 07:34:32 PM
Pretty much still a lib. Used to be a Lib, back in the Ron Paul days in the 1980s. I've talked myself out of the open-borders ideology. To be honest, I doubt most people would like living in a really libertarian society, so I currently favor a much more federal system, with lots of home-rule cities so people can easily self-segregate.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Classical_Liberal on August 29, 2016, 09:54:34 PM
At my heart I'm Libertarian.  I do accept that the complex modern web of society as it exists will require more gov't intervention and regulation to function than I would personally prefer.   At best Gov't is less efficient than the market, but the trade is it helps to maintain organization and a level playing field for all.  At worst it forces "equality of all" (except those in power); corruption & cronyism turn inefficiency to blatant waste and favoritism to those few in power.  I feel the US is currently slighter closer to the later in this spectrum, I'll be voting for Johnson. 
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: badbear on August 29, 2016, 10:31:42 PM
Yes, I'll be casting my vote for Gary Johnson in November. It would be nice to see him in the debates, but I think the debate commission will most likely keep him out. On policy, balance the budget, let people have freedom as long as it does not harm others, and stop invading foreign nations. Eliminate overly burdensome regulation which was created to prevent competition from smaller companies, attempt to stop crony capitalism, and create a level playing field for real competition. I'm always surprised when people are fiscally responsible in their own lives but don't expect the same from their government. Neither D's or the R's are fiscally conservative anymore, on the whole. Among those in federal elected office, I align most with Rand Paul in the Senate and Justin Amash in the House.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: shenlong55 on August 30, 2016, 08:21:43 AM
At best Gov't is less efficient than the market...

Do you happen to have any sources for that?  I hear it all the time, but I've never seen any actual studies.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: little_brown_dog on August 30, 2016, 08:34:04 AM
I lean libertarian on some things, but I do believe government oversight and rules are needed on big issues that a truly free market isn’t well equipped to handle without significantly risking or harming the population (ex:  education, healthcare, the environment).  From what I can tell, free market ideologies work well for luxury goods or necessities where there is considerable wiggle room (ex: housing), but what about education, health services, or wildlife habitat? In a truly free market, schools, hospitals, and conservation land are all on the chopping block even if their removal/failure or destruction directly harms people/the environment. I believe in limiting government waste, improving efficiency, and protecting the people's individual freedoms…not economic social Darwinism. Unfortunately most of the libertarians I have met in person seem to be extreme rugged individualists/social Darwinist proponents, so I have a hard time relating even though I do agree with some of the libertarian principles.

Can you be libertarian if you believe in a pick and choose kind of style of government intervention??? If so, then I guess I'd be one!
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Spork on August 30, 2016, 08:51:14 AM
Lib as far as they are influenced by Smith and Hayek.  The ones who are influenced by Ayn Rand trouble me deeply.

Indeed.

We are really not that scary.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: BTDretire on August 30, 2016, 09:28:05 AM
I have voted republican since the 80's. (caveat later)
The event that galvanized me:
We were buying a house in the 80's and a 30 year mortgage was
16-3/4%. My wife and I had been married 3 years and had been
good MMM'ers, we had about $25K saved and in those high interest days it was
earning about $2.5k a year.
 Our income was low, in the $18k range.
 The state I was in had a subsidized mortgage program with 9% mortgage rates.
I had applied, and was denied because my income was to high, yep, by about $2k.
 So if we had not tried to get ahead by living frugal and saving all we could, the government would help. If I had bought a new car, drank beer and ate out several times a week, yee old government would be right there to help.
I ended up with a 13-3/4% mortgage with a 3 year balloon payment.
It's been 32 years, and I still say government programs can go F%$& themselves.
 As to voting republican, I'm probably more libertarian.
But I'll vote republican because, a libertarian vote is wasted, no chance to win.
 I want small government, I'm pro-choice but don't think it's a good choice.
Stop putting people in jail for drugs. I think we need borders, 30 years ago!
Married to a legal immigrant, and think they actually make a America better.
 I think if you don't have it together enough to get a photo ID, you don't have what it takes to make an informed vote. If you are on welfare, I don't think you should be able to vote yourself more welfare.
 And with that I'll go get my fire extinguisher.

 Edit to add the libertarian platform.
https://www.lp.org/platform
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: MVal on August 30, 2016, 09:29:43 AM
Me.  Still hoping for the 4 years of Ron Paul that this country needs.

I'm with ya, there!
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on August 30, 2016, 02:27:24 PM
Lib as far as they are influenced by Smith and Hayek.  The ones who are influenced by Ayn Rand trouble me deeply.

Indeed.

We are really not that scary.

Most of you are.  I'd be trying to distance myself from the rest, who often seem to foam at the mouth and have little regard for other people.  Actually, if I was trying to guess a political party for a sociopath...   ;)

That's the problem with Libertarians, and why I've slowly stopped ID'ing as one--the ones who post online mostly seem to lack empathy.  I love the theory of libertarianism, but I also see the need to help others, whereas it seems most libs want to say "well, that's the responsibility of the (local) community/family" and just tragedy of the commons/bystander effect away the problem so they don't have to do anything.

My apologies for the overgeneralization here.  I'm sure it's present company excluded.  That's just been my anecdotal experience--libertarianism is great.  Libertarians, not so much.  Actually, the same problem I first had as a teenager with religion, which started me on the path to distancing myself from all religions--the institution didn't seem so bad (at the time), but the people representing it, ugh. 

Now what other broad groups can I insult?  :P

That's part of why I like Mustachianism--not only do I like the underlying theory Pete puts forth on his blog, but having met a lot of Mustachians (attended many meetups, stayed with Mustachians, etc.), they're pretty interesting, good people in general.  Ditto Pastafarians.  The Church of the FSM tends to attract funny, intelligent people.  Libertarians have some of that, but also many more vocal people who equate taxes to rape and theft and who just like to shout.  Most of those seem to be huge Ayn Rand fans (...and we're back on track.  Nailed it.).
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Northwestie on August 30, 2016, 02:41:27 PM
Lib as far as they are influenced by Smith and Hayek.  The ones who are influenced by Ayn Rand trouble me deeply.

Indeed.

We are really not that scary.

Most of you are.  I'd be trying to distance myself from the rest, who often seem to foam at the mouth and have little regard for other people.  Actually, if I was trying to guess a political party for a sociopath...   ;)

That's the problem with Libertarians, and why I've slowly stopped ID'ing as one--the ones who post online mostly seem to lack empathy.  I love the theory of libertarianism, but I also see the need to help others, whereas it seems most libs want to say "well, that's the responsibility of the (local) community/family" and just tragedy of the commons/bystander effect away the problem so they don't have to do anything.

My apologies for the overgeneralization here.  I'm sure it's present company excluded.  That's just been my anecdotal experience--libertarianism is great.  Libertarians, not so much.  Actually, the same problem I first had as a teenager with religion, which started me on the path to distancing myself from all religions--the institution didn't seem so bad (at the time), but the people representing it, ugh. 

Now what other broad groups can I insult?  :P

That's part of why I like Mustachianism--not only do I like the underlying theory Pete puts forth on his blog, but having met a lot of Mustachians (attended many meetups, stayed with Mustachians, etc.), they're pretty interesting, good people in general.  Ditto Pastafarians.  The Church of the FSM tends to attract funny, intelligent people.  Libertarians have some of that, but also many more vocal people who equate taxes to rape and theft and who just like to shout.  Most of those seem to be huge Ayn Rand fans (...and we're back on track.  Nailed it.).

Bonus points for narrative construction and humor
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Spork on August 30, 2016, 02:56:23 PM
Lib as far as they are influenced by Smith and Hayek.  The ones who are influenced by Ayn Rand trouble me deeply.

Indeed.

We are really not that scary.

Most of you are.  I'd be trying to distance myself from the rest, who often seem to foam at the mouth and have little regard for other people.  Actually, if I was trying to guess a political party for a sociopath...   ;)


Meh.   I've met quite a lot of them.  (And for the tiny slice of the population this represents, I suspect I've met more than most.)  I like some of them.  I don't like some of them. 

A few of the current top "objectivist elite" are not very likable... and (IMO) that does have some tendency to breed like folk in the followers.  I met a small number of the "elite" back in the 80s -- most very likable and down to earth.  I am not sure that holds true today.

FWIW, Objectivists (big O) shun Libertarians (big L).  There was a big schism there back in the 80s that was just stupid.   Because of this, there are not a whole lot of "Ayn Rand libertarians" out there.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on August 30, 2016, 03:26:58 PM
A few of the current top "objectivist elite" are not very likable... and (IMO) that does have some tendency to breed like folk in the followers.  I met a small number of the "elite" back in the 80s -- most very likable and down to earth.  I am not sure that holds true today.

I think you take it much more seriously and high-level than the vast majority that identify as such and post online their theories.

Quote
FWIW, Objectivists (big O) shun Libertarians (big L).  There was a big schism there back in the 80s that was just stupid.   Because of this, there are not a whole lot of "Ayn Rand libertarians" out there.

I tentatively disagree.  I don't know to what you're referring, but a split 30 years ago has what effect on a 20 year old who's just read Ayn Rand and self ID's as a Libertarian?  Maybe for the 50 and 60 year olds who remember it and care about it.  Maybe.

I'm curious then, what political party do you think most Objectivists self-identify as?  (The party with the most of them, even if it's not a majority.)
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Jeremy E. on August 30, 2016, 03:52:32 PM
I consider myself a libertarian, but I'm definitely not a pure or hardcore libertarian(I'm okay with drivers licenses, some social safety nets, etc. I think I'm about as libertarian as Gary Johnson, and think Johnson as president will push our country in the right direction.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: RangerOne on August 30, 2016, 04:25:04 PM
At this point I am starting to believe that 8 years of a branch of government going full libertarian would do us a lot of good. We need to stop adding new programs and start seriously considering discarding ones we think are failing or are too regressive like social security. Neither Repubs nor Democrats are willing to do this.

My big issue with Johnson is I think he is too soft on climate change. He essentially now saying the free market can deal with the problem without considering options like a carbon tax. If you let the free markets roll totally uninhibited new coal power plants would spring up like weeds. The free market solution at least historically has always been the carbon tax. Instead of telling a business they can't produce carbon just make it very expensive so the invest in ways to reduce emissions. I think he needs to fall back to this position or come out and say he doesn't believe climate change is potentially disastrous.

Every other issue is less critical to me and I think up for grabs given sound economic principles are followed.

I have been listening to a lot of old Milton Friedman lectures and I have to say he makes a lot of sense. Perhaps the best an only way to remove corruption from government is to remove much of the power over industry that ensures their corruption. And let greed and competition regulate behavior more naturally.

Its an argument tough to swallow at first for someone raised and schooled in a very liberal environment but in many cases I think Dr. Friedman's arguments have a lot of merit.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: bacchi on August 30, 2016, 04:44:23 PM
My big issue with Johnson is I think he is too soft on climate change. He essentially now saying the free market can deal with the problem without considering options like a carbon tax. If you let the free markets roll totally uninhibited new coal power plants would spring up like weeds. The free market solution at least historically has always been the carbon tax. Instead of telling a business they can't produce carbon just make it very expensive so the invest in ways to reduce emissions. I think he needs to fall back to this position or come out and say he doesn't believe climate change is potentially disastrous.

[snip]

I have been listening to a lot of old Milton Friedman lectures

Friedman suggested taxing pollution ("effluent"). Pollution is, of course, the perfect negative externality.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: yuka on August 30, 2016, 04:54:42 PM
I guess I'd have to say I'm a libertarian, although I don't really have any interest in ideological purity; I just want a few of the really important things done. I'd vote for Hillary Clinton if I thought she could and would clean up the mess caused by NHA 1934/FHA. I'd be perhaps even more inclined to vote for someone who acknowledged that our current infrastructure needs the $2 trillion that ASCE says over the next decade, but whose solution is to shrink our infrastructure to a level that makes sense.

Having said that, it really seems weird to me when people say they want small government at every level. I want powerful local governments; I just don't want all the federal and state programs that encourage towns to do really stupid things.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: BDWW on August 30, 2016, 05:06:34 PM
I'm libertarian.

The weird thing about libertarianism, and  I suspect third parties in general, is that somehow we have to 100% support the platform. In this thread there's people saying "I'd be libertarian but...."

Do any of those stipulations EVER get applied to the main parties? I doubt very many people actually adhere to such a stringent interpretation of either D or R parties.

I don't agree with the (L) party on everything, nor do I think we need to go all the way to some supposed libertarian ideal. But I do want/think we need libertarian influence on the current state of affairs. Slide the scale towards liberatarianism to counterbalance what I view as a very top heavy statist government at the moment.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Libertea on August 31, 2016, 01:48:38 AM
I'm libertarian.

The weird thing about libertarianism, and  I suspect third parties in general, is that somehow we have to 100% support the platform. In this thread there's people saying "I'd be libertarian but...."

Do any of those stipulations EVER get applied to the main parties? I doubt very many people actually adhere to such a stringent interpretation of either D or R parties.

I don't agree with the (L) party on everything, nor do I think we need to go all the way to some supposed libertarian ideal. But I do want/think we need libertarian influence on the current state of affairs. Slide the scale towards liberatarianism to counterbalance what I view as a very top heavy statist government at the moment.
I completely agree with this.  I don't agree with everything that ANYONE else besides myself believes.  (If I did, that would be kind of scary, like I had a mental clone!)  Not sure why the double standard.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on August 31, 2016, 06:39:57 AM
I'm libertarian.

The weird thing about libertarianism, and  I suspect third parties in general, is that somehow we have to 100% support the platform. In this thread there's people saying "I'd be libertarian but...."

Do any of those stipulations EVER get applied to the main parties? I doubt very many people actually adhere to such a stringent interpretation of either D or R parties.

I don't agree with the (L) party on everything, nor do I think we need to go all the way to some supposed libertarian ideal. But I do want/think we need libertarian influence on the current state of affairs. Slide the scale towards liberatarianism to counterbalance what I view as a very top heavy statist government at the moment.

I don't think that people have to 100% support the platform of a third party.  Third parties tend to have a bunch of good ideas and a few horrifically bad ones that prevent support from most voters.  (Even in this thread you have people indicating that some of the ideas of the Libertarian party are terrifying.)  If they could iron out the more extreme stances, I'd fully expect a more widespread acceptance of them as political leaders.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: saijoe on August 31, 2016, 09:17:36 AM
I think that if you polled the thoughtful people of this country, you'd find most are fiscally conservative and socially liberal.  I had always been a Republican and still am to some degree.  But in the past few years, I've been leaning more toward being libertarian.  There are some social issues (abortion, pot legalization, prostitution, etc.) that I soul search on.  But if I'm honest, what a person wants to do with their own body is their business.  And I think that Republicans who take their stand on these issues do so at their own peril as it relates to getting elected. 
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: katsiki on August 31, 2016, 09:26:12 AM
If we only had more 'thoughtful' people and they voted..
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Jrr85 on August 31, 2016, 09:34:09 AM
I think that if you polled the thoughtful people of this country, you'd find most are fiscally conservative and socially liberal.  I had always been a Republican and still am to some degree.  But in the past few years, I've been leaning more toward being libertarian.  There are some social issues (abortion, pot legalization, prostitution, etc.) that I soul search on.  But if I'm honest, what a person wants to do with their own body is their business.  And I think that Republicans who take their stand on these issues do so at their own peril as it relates to getting elected.

Strongly disagree (unless you have a very restrictive definition of thoughtful).  I think you'd find most people are fiscally conservative and socially liberal in theory, but they have a reason why their pet issue is an exception.  Most of the pet issues would be around spending, but there would be some social stuff also.  At best, most people believe in unlimited government, they just only want that unlimited power excercised in a narrow sphere.  Of course everybody's choice of sphere is a little different, so you end up with the behemoth that we currently have.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: little_brown_dog on August 31, 2016, 09:37:13 AM
I'm libertarian.

The weird thing about libertarianism, and  I suspect third parties in general, is that somehow we have to 100% support the platform. In this thread there's people saying "I'd be libertarian but...."

Do any of those stipulations EVER get applied to the main parties? I doubt very many people actually adhere to such a stringent interpretation of either D or R parties.

I don't agree with the (L) party on everything, nor do I think we need to go all the way to some supposed libertarian ideal. But I do want/think we need libertarian influence on the current state of affairs. Slide the scale towards liberatarianism to counterbalance what I view as a very top heavy statist government at the moment.

I don't think that people have to 100% support the platform of a third party.  Third parties tend to have a bunch of good ideas and a few horrifically bad ones that prevent support from most voters.  (Even in this thread you have people indicating that some of the ideas of the Libertarian party are terrifying.)  If they could iron out the more extreme stances, I'd fully expect a more widespread acceptance of them as political leaders.

Exactly. I like some of the fiscal ideas of the libertarian party, but if I vote for them, I’d also end up voting for someone that will probably take an extremely hands off approach to the environment or vulnerable groups (the elderly, the poor). The libertarian party has a problem because many people who are very socially liberal and could be potential libertarian voters, also happen to be big proponents for helping the poor and protecting the planet. These voters cannot accept the idea that people and the environment should be at the mercy of a market that only cares about profit. As a result, they can’t vote libertarian even if they also want to see government reduced in other areas. The idea that someone might say "eh let the market take care of the planet/the poor...it will work itself out...trust us" is absolutely terrifying.
I am registered as an independent and will probably vote democrat even though it really is a pick your poison scenario for someone like me. I'd love a nuanced libertarian candidate that recognizes the strengths and limitations of free market ideologies and as a result, implements policy positions in a very tailored fashion. This person would take a very strong stance on environmental protection/global warming, and acknowledge the need to fund and tightly regulate healthcare and education while looking for areas to improve state governance and efficiency in the fed system. Alas, I don't see a candidate like that. I can't throw education, healthcare, and the planet to the wolves no matter how much I agree with certain tax positions.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Jrr85 on August 31, 2016, 09:48:52 AM
I'm libertarian.

The weird thing about libertarianism, and  I suspect third parties in general, is that somehow we have to 100% support the platform. In this thread there's people saying "I'd be libertarian but...."

Do any of those stipulations EVER get applied to the main parties? I doubt very many people actually adhere to such a stringent interpretation of either D or R parties.

I don't agree with the (L) party on everything, nor do I think we need to go all the way to some supposed libertarian ideal. But I do want/think we need libertarian influence on the current state of affairs. Slide the scale towards liberatarianism to counterbalance what I view as a very top heavy statist government at the moment.

I don't think that people have to 100% support the platform of a third party.  Third parties tend to have a bunch of good ideas and a few horrifically bad ones that prevent support from most voters.  (Even in this thread you have people indicating that some of the ideas of the Libertarian party are terrifying.)  If they could iron out the more extreme stances, I'd fully expect a more widespread acceptance of them as political leaders.

Exactly. I like some of the fiscal ideas of the libertarian party, but if I vote for them, I’d also end up voting for someone that will probably take an extremely hands off approach to the environment or vulnerable groups (the elderly, the poor). The libertarian party has a problem because many people who are very socially liberal and could be potential libertarian voters, also happen to be big proponents for helping the poor and protecting the planet. These voters cannot accept the idea that people and the environment should be at the mercy of a market that only cares about profit. As a result, they can’t vote libertarian even if they also want to see government reduced in other areas. The idea that someone might say "eh let the market take care of the planet/the poor...it will work itself out...trust us" is absolutely terrifying.
I am registered as an independent and will probably vote democrat even though it really is a pick your poison scenario for someone like me. I'd love a nuanced libertarian candidate that recognizes the strengths and limitations of free market ideologies and as a result, implements policy positions in a very tailored fashion. This person would take a very strong stance on environmental protection/global warming, and acknowledge the need to fund and tightly regulate healthcare and education while looking for areas to improve state governance and efficiency in the fed system. Alas, I don't see a candidate like that. I can't throw education, healthcare, and the planet to the wolves no matter how much I agree with certain tax positions.

In other words, the problem with the libertarian party is most people are not libertarian, and you would vote for the libertarian party, except that you are not very libertarian. 

That is most of the libertarian party's problem.  There is a phenomenon the libertarian party faces where people that actually have libertarian views refuse to identify with the party because of differences in policies that would be dwarfed by the average Democrat or Republican's problem with their own party's platform.  I think this is just a reflection of certain types of people drawn to libertarian philosophy.  They don't want to coerce other people in part because they are uncomfortable with the idea of subjugating the individual to a group, and this also makes them less likely to want to consider themselves a member of the Libertarian party. 

ETA: bolded portion
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Spork on August 31, 2016, 09:53:30 AM

Quote
FWIW, Objectivists (big O) shun Libertarians (big L).  There was a big schism there back in the 80s that was just stupid.   Because of this, there are not a whole lot of "Ayn Rand libertarians" out there.

I tentatively disagree.  I don't know to what you're referring, but a split 30 years ago has what effect on a 20 year old who's just read Ayn Rand and self ID's as a Libertarian?  Maybe for the 50 and 60 year olds who remember it and care about it.  Maybe.

I'm curious then, what political party do you think most Objectivists self-identify as?  (The party with the most of them, even if it's not a majority.)

Well, the split continues... at least in the (big O) Objectivist subculture.  They still publish essays on why Libertarianism is wrong.  I really disagree with them on this point.  I totally understand where you are coming from in your objections... I'm just saying the big-O guys are still very anti-libertarian.

As to what party they align with: None.  Again: This is really dumb, IMO.  Over the years there have been "you should vote Republican this year" and "you should vote Democrat this year" essays.  As the Republicans became more and more religious, there was more often support thrown to the Democrats.  If I remember correctly, there was light support for Romney last election -- not because they liked him, but because they thought he was a bumbling guy that wouldn't get things done (vs Obama which they thought was going to destroy the world in the next 4 years).

Now: Obviously Obama didn't quite destroy the world.  They often see much more disaster coming much sooner than I do.  My point was: they did not back Johnson in 2012.  (But I voted for him.)

I can's say I've read anything from various big-O people on this election.  I know they hate both sides (and Johnson) pretty equally.  If I were to guess, I would guess they would say to abstain from voting on principle.

But... we may be talking about 2 groups of folks.  You: average Joe that read Atlas Shrugged last month.  Me: Joe-Objectivist that has read most of her published works and reads various essays published by various big-O "elites."  And that means we're probably mostly in agreement, just talking about different sub-topics.  My accidental misdirection was at the "foaming at the mouth" group you describe... because of those I have met, that's more likely to fall into the big-O group that despises big-L libertarianism.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: little_brown_dog on August 31, 2016, 10:35:30 AM

Exactly. I like some of the fiscal ideas of the libertarian party, but if I vote for them, I’d also end up voting for someone that will probably take an extremely hands off approach to the environment or vulnerable groups (the elderly, the poor). The libertarian party has a problem because many people who are very socially liberal and could be potential libertarian voters, also happen to be big proponents for helping the poor and protecting the planet. These voters cannot accept the idea that people and the environment should be at the mercy of a market that only cares about profit. As a result, they can’t vote libertarian even if they also want to see government reduced in other areas. The idea that someone might say "eh let the market take care of the planet/the poor...it will work itself out...trust us" is absolutely terrifying.
I am registered as an independent and will probably vote democrat even though it really is a pick your poison scenario for someone like me. I'd love a nuanced libertarian candidate that recognizes the strengths and limitations of free market ideologies and as a result, implements policy positions in a very tailored fashion. This person would take a very strong stance on environmental protection/global warming, and acknowledge the need to fund and tightly regulate healthcare and education while looking for areas to improve state governance and efficiency in the fed system. Alas, I don't see a candidate like that. I can't throw education, healthcare, and the planet to the wolves no matter how much I agree with certain tax positions.

In other words, the problem with the libertarian party is most people are not libertarian, and you would vote for the libertarian party, except that you are not very libertarian. 

That is most of the libertarian party's problem.  There is a phenomenon the libertarian party faces where people that actually have libertarian views refuse to identify with the party because of differences in policies that would dwarf the average Democrat or Republican's problem with their own party's platform.  I think this is just a reflection of certain types of people drawn to libertarian philosophy.  They don't want to coerce other people in part because they are uncomfortable with the idea of subjugating the individual to a group, and this also makes them less likely to want to consider themselves a member of the Libertarian party.

Yes – I guess you could consider me “libertarian leaning” or “libertarian-lite” :)

I think you hit the nail on the head when you talk about the magnitude of differences within a party. For example, the dems as a whole seem to have a pretty cohesive ideology across the issues. Sure they squabble about  the details- $15 vs $12 min wage, how far the environmental regulations should go, etc. But overall the general sentiment (increase the wage, implement environmental regulations) is quite cohesive. There is a lot more ideological variation in libertarian leaning voters, which makes it hard to really craft a platform and party that maximizes voter turn out. Some of us are adamant about environmental protection, others not at all. Some find the idea of letting the market handle healthcare perfectly fine, while others think it will be a complete disaster. Some have no problem with high taxes...as long as it's your state and not the fed. These differences are major ideological ones, not minor disagreements about details that people are willing to compromise on. I think that makes it harder to groom a candidate that more people could get behind. The potential voters are just all over the map.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: yuka on August 31, 2016, 10:57:15 AM

Quote
FWIW, Objectivists (big O) shun Libertarians (big L).  There was a big schism there back in the 80s that was just stupid.   Because of this, there are not a whole lot of "Ayn Rand libertarians" out there.

I tentatively disagree.  I don't know to what you're referring, but a split 30 years ago has what effect on a 20 year old who's just read Ayn Rand and self ID's as a Libertarian?  Maybe for the 50 and 60 year olds who remember it and care about it.  Maybe.

I'm curious then, what political party do you think most Objectivists self-identify as?  (The party with the most of them, even if it's not a majority.)

Well, the split continues... at least in the (big O) Objectivist subculture.  They still publish essays on why Libertarianism is wrong.  I really disagree with them on this point.  I totally understand where you are coming from in your objections... I'm just saying the big-O guys are still very anti-libertarian.

As to what party they align with: None.  Again: This is really dumb, IMO.  Over the years there have been "you should vote Republican this year" and "you should vote Democrat this year" essays.  As the Republicans became more and more religious, there was more often support thrown to the Democrats.  If I remember correctly, there was light support for Romney last election -- not because they liked him, but because they thought he was a bumbling guy that wouldn't get things done (vs Obama which they thought was going to destroy the world in the next 4 years).

Now: Obviously Obama didn't quite destroy the world.  They often see much more disaster coming much sooner than I do.  My point was: they did not back Johnson in 2012.  (But I voted for him.)

I can's say I've read anything from various big-O people on this election.  I know they hate both sides (and Johnson) pretty equally.  If I were to guess, I would guess they would say to abstain from voting on principle.

But... we may be talking about 2 groups of folks.  You: average Joe that read Atlas Shrugged last month.  Me: Joe-Objectivist that has read most of her published works and reads various essays published by various big-O "elites."  And that means we're probably mostly in agreement, just talking about different sub-topics.  My accidental misdirection was at the "foaming at the mouth" group you describe... because of those I have met, that's more likely to fall into the big-O group that despises big-L libertarianism.

My favorite 'game the election' libertarian idea is that you should always vote Democrat rather than Republican because of the reasons for their various policies. Democrat policy is supposed to be pragmatic, so the bad stuff should be quickly found out and repealed, whereas Republicans, whose policy is theoretically grounded more in dogma, are less likely to care whether something works. I like the theory, though I think Venezuela might be a good example of another way that things could go.

For a more local example of bad Democrat policy not going away, we can look at the National Homeowners Act of 1934.  Despite institutionalizing segregation and making it very hard to pursue prosperous land use patterns, it's been in place for nearly a century.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Jrr85 on August 31, 2016, 11:22:52 AM

Exactly. I like some of the fiscal ideas of the libertarian party, but if I vote for them, I’d also end up voting for someone that will probably take an extremely hands off approach to the environment or vulnerable groups (the elderly, the poor). The libertarian party has a problem because many people who are very socially liberal and could be potential libertarian voters, also happen to be big proponents for helping the poor and protecting the planet. These voters cannot accept the idea that people and the environment should be at the mercy of a market that only cares about profit. As a result, they can’t vote libertarian even if they also want to see government reduced in other areas. The idea that someone might say "eh let the market take care of the planet/the poor...it will work itself out...trust us" is absolutely terrifying.
I am registered as an independent and will probably vote democrat even though it really is a pick your poison scenario for someone like me. I'd love a nuanced libertarian candidate that recognizes the strengths and limitations of free market ideologies and as a result, implements policy positions in a very tailored fashion. This person would take a very strong stance on environmental protection/global warming, and acknowledge the need to fund and tightly regulate healthcare and education while looking for areas to improve state governance and efficiency in the fed system. Alas, I don't see a candidate like that. I can't throw education, healthcare, and the planet to the wolves no matter how much I agree with certain tax positions.

In other words, the problem with the libertarian party is most people are not libertarian, and you would vote for the libertarian party, except that you are not very libertarian. 

That is most of the libertarian party's problem.  There is a phenomenon the libertarian party faces where people that actually have libertarian views refuse to identify with the party because of differences in policies that would dwarf the average Democrat or Republican's problem with their own party's platform.  I think this is just a reflection of certain types of people drawn to libertarian philosophy.  They don't want to coerce other people in part because they are uncomfortable with the idea of subjugating the individual to a group, and this also makes them less likely to want to consider themselves a member of the Libertarian party.

Yes – I guess you could consider me “libertarian leaning” or “libertarian-lite” :)

I think you hit the nail on the head when you talk about the magnitude of differences within a party. For example, the dems as a whole seem to have a pretty cohesive ideology across the issues. Sure they squabble about  the details- $15 vs $12 min wage, how far the environmental regulations should go, etc. But overall the general sentiment (increase the wage, implement environmental regulations) is quite cohesive. There is a lot more ideological variation in libertarian leaning voters, which makes it hard to really craft a platform and party that maximizes voter turn out. Some of us are adamant about environmental protection, others not at all. Some find the idea of letting the market handle healthcare perfectly fine, while others think it will be a complete disaster. Some have no problem with high taxes...as long as it's your state and not the fed. These differences are major ideological ones, not minor disagreements about details that people are willing to compromise on. I think that makes it harder to groom a candidate that more people could get behind. The potential voters are just all over the map.

That was actually a typo (that I have fixed now), so I guess we don't agree.  I meant to say that libertarians that refuse to identify with the Libertarian party often have relatively small ideological differences compared to those that are papered over within the Democrat and Republican party.  For example, there is no reason that pro-labor groups and pro-environmental regulation groups should be in the same political party.  They often are in conflict, as pro-environmental regulation groups often kill off projects that would be good for labor groups, particularly unions.  But it's a political coalition and they more or less make it work, even if that requires one faction or the other to swallow some bitter pills at times.  Similarly, the democrat coalition manages to contain both the bulk of jewish people in the U.S. and the bulk of anti-Semites.  For republicans, there's no fundamental reason that religious evangelical Christians should be in the same party as low taxes proponents (I mean there is a potential overlapping interest to the extent they both deem institutions of civil society, whether church or community, as having a primary role over gov't in ordering society, but that's somewhat tenuous) or that evangelical Christians conservatives should be in the same party as strong defense proponents.   But they more or less manage to keep a coalition (or at least did until this most recent presidential election). 

But when it comes to libertarians, you have actual libertarian ideologues who will forsake the party because say, the party's official platform is for provide for school choice, rather than to completely do away with public schools and completely 'voucherize' primary and secondary education.  Or they forsake the libertarian party completely because they are not as non-interventionist as they like, even though it's still way, way more non-interventionist than the major parties.  I'm making these examples up, but they're representative of the types of arguments that small l-libertarians will make against the Libertarian party.  They are quick to resort to "no true scotsman" type arguments, and I think for many of them, this is a result of the same personality traits that makes libertarianism attractive to them to begin with.   
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: dignam on August 31, 2016, 03:53:47 PM
Count me in, have been for a while.

I don't subscribe to the "eliminate all government entities except military" line of thinking so much, but there is definitely fat to be trimmed. 

Both D/R parties are so corrupt and divisive it's sad.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: human on August 31, 2016, 04:12:44 PM
I have voted republican since the 80's. (caveat later)
The event that galvanized me:
We were buying a house in the 80's and a 30 year mortgage was
16-3/4%. My wife and I had been married 3 years and had been
good MMM'ers, we had about $25K saved and in those high interest days it was
earning about $2.5k a year.
 Our income was low, in the $18k range.
 The state I was in had a subsidized mortgage program with 9% mortgage rates.
I had applied, and was denied because my income was to high, yep, by about $2k.
 So if we had not tried to get ahead by living frugal and saving all we could, the government would help. If I had bought a new car, drank beer and ate out several times a week, yee old government would be right there to help.

I ended up with a 13-3/4% mortgage with a 3 year balloon payment.
It's been 32 years, and I still say government programs can go F%$& themselves.
 As to voting republican, I'm probably more libertarian.
But I'll vote republican because, a libertarian vote is wasted, no chance to win.
 I want small government, I'm pro-choice but don't think it's a good choice.
Stop putting people in jail for drugs. I think we need borders, 30 years ago!
Married to a legal immigrant, and think they actually make a America better.
 I think if you don't have it together enough to get a photo ID, you don't have what it takes to make an informed vote. If you are on welfare, I don't think you should be able to vote yourself more welfare.
 And with that I'll go get my fire extinguisher.

 Edit to add the libertarian platform.
https://www.lp.org/platform

What you did with your income would have had no effect on your acceptance into the program. It was the income itself. Obviously the program was means tested to give those with low incomes an opportunity to purchase affordable housing. This is the big problem I have with so called libertarians, at the end of the day many of them just don't like seeing people other themselves getting handouts.

I've gone from full on socialist to socialist libertarian. Smoke what you want and do what you want, but I'm not for letting the "invisible hand" taking care of things like workers rights or the environment.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: yuka on August 31, 2016, 05:23:47 PM

I've gone from full on socialist to socialist libertarian. Smoke what you want and do what you want, but I'm not for letting the "invisible hand" taking care of things like workers rights or the environment.

Wouldn't that be more commonly described as 'democrat'?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: human on August 31, 2016, 05:36:00 PM
Not sure if that's a joke or not but it's usually much further left than a democrat.

Democrats are practically republicans in my point of view!
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on September 01, 2016, 06:19:04 AM
Democrats are practically republicans in my point of view!

Yeah, they appear to be as far right as Republicans were 30 or so years ago.  It's crazy how right wing politics in the US has become.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on September 01, 2016, 06:25:03 AM
Democrats are practically republicans in my point of view!

Yeah, they appear to be as far right as Republicans were 30 or so years ago.  It's crazy how right wing politics in the US has become.
Indeed. =/
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Libertea on September 01, 2016, 06:59:19 PM
All the political classifications are effed up these days.  Libertarians were the original classical liberals.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: yuka on September 01, 2016, 07:03:00 PM
All the political classifications are effed up these days.  Libertarians were the original classical liberals.

And conservatives too, since being liberal is being conservative in a place where we started from liberalism.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: The Happy Philosopher on September 01, 2016, 07:21:10 PM
In my mind there is a difference between the Libertarian political party and having libertarian leaning political ideals. Personally I lean more libertarian than either political party, but at the same time I realize that a pure Libertarian philosophy is not compatible with a functioning government.

The problem with the Libertarian philosophy is if you take it to the logical conclusion, there is no government. There is anarchy.

Plus it is really easy to be libertarian when you are rich, white and male which makes me wonder if the reason I am drawn to it is muddled by my privilege. Just writing this makes me think I need a therapist ;)

A year or two ago, I'd have said a definite yes.

But now, I'm less and less Libertarian as the years go on (mostly due to the hardcore nuts online who put forth too extreme of a view with no room for compromise), but I still identify as mostly libertarian and there's no other party I could identify with.

I'd guess I'll eventually identify as non-partisan, but we'll see.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on September 01, 2016, 08:40:25 PM
In my mind there is a difference between the Libertarian political party and having libertarian leaning political ideals. Personally I lean more libertarian than either political party, but at the same time I realize that a pure Libertarian philosophy is not compatible with a functioning government.

The problem with the Libertarian philosophy is if you take it to the logical conclusion, there is no government. There is anarchy.

Plus it is really easy to be libertarian when you are rich, white and male which makes me wonder if the reason I am drawn to it is muddled by my privilege. Just writing this makes me think I need a therapist ;)

A year or two ago, I'd have said a definite yes.

But now, I'm less and less Libertarian as the years go on (mostly due to the hardcore nuts online who put forth too extreme of a view with no room for compromise), but I still identify as mostly libertarian and there's no other party I could identify with.

I'd guess I'll eventually identify as non-partisan, but we'll see.
Definitely agree with all of that!  :)

Recognizing my privilege has absolutely moved me away from Libertarianism in some aspects towards more social programs/safety nets rather than a "bootstrap yourself" philosophy.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Spork on September 01, 2016, 09:51:08 PM
In my mind there is a difference between the Libertarian political party and having libertarian leaning political ideals. Personally I lean more libertarian than either political party, but at the same time I realize that a pure Libertarian philosophy is not compatible with a functioning government.

The problem with the Libertarian philosophy is if you take it to the logical conclusion, there is no government. There is anarchy.


No, not anarchy.  The philosophy is that the initiation of force is wrong.  Government is put in place (police, military, court systems) to deal with times when the initiation of force occurs.  The people grant the government a monopoly on the use of force -- and expect that at no time the government will initiate force.

Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Jrr85 on September 01, 2016, 10:55:47 PM

The problem with the Libertarian philosophy is if you take it to the logical conclusion, there is no government. There is anarchy.


No, not at all.  You might as well say that any position other than anarchism, taken to its logical conclusion, leads to communism. 

There are different logical conclusions you could reach following libertarian philosophy, and one of the them is that government should do nothing other than provide public goods and protect the negative rights of its citizens. 
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on September 02, 2016, 06:47:24 AM

The problem with the Libertarian philosophy is if you take it to the logical conclusion, there is no government. There is anarchy.


No, not at all.  You might as well say that any position other than anarchism, taken to its logical conclusion, leads to communism. 

There are different logical conclusions you could reach following libertarian philosophy, and one of the them is that government should do nothing other than provide public goods and protect the negative rights of its citizens. 
But how does it provide "public goods" without taxation?  How does it "protect the negative rights" without taxation?  If logically consistent - it must lead to anarchism.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Jeremy E. on September 02, 2016, 10:36:18 AM

The problem with the Libertarian philosophy is if you take it to the logical conclusion, there is no government. There is anarchy.


No, not at all.  You might as well say that any position other than anarchism, taken to its logical conclusion, leads to communism. 

There are different logical conclusions you could reach following libertarian philosophy, and one of the them is that government should do nothing other than provide public goods and protect the negative rights of its citizens. 
But how does it provide "public goods" without taxation?  How does it "protect the negative rights" without taxation?  If logically consistent - it must lead to anarchism.
Most libertarians want to eliminate income tax, but not taxes completely, for instance Gary Johnson is a proponent of eliminating the income tax and having a consumption tax, Ron Paul is a proponent of getting rid of the income tax and just keeping the rest of our taxes. They both also want to reduce spending a lot, to reduce the need for taxes, but neither of them want to entirely get rid of taxes or the entire government, and I'd say they are the two most prominent libertarians currently.

My self, I'm a libertarian that wants to keep the income tax.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on September 02, 2016, 01:52:32 PM

The problem with the Libertarian philosophy is if you take it to the logical conclusion, there is no government. There is anarchy.


No, not at all.  You might as well say that any position other than anarchism, taken to its logical conclusion, leads to communism. 

There are different logical conclusions you could reach following libertarian philosophy, and one of the them is that government should do nothing other than provide public goods and protect the negative rights of its citizens. 
But how does it provide "public goods" without taxation?  How does it "protect the negative rights" without taxation?  If logically consistent - it must lead to anarchism.
Most libertarians want to eliminate income tax, but not taxes completely, for instance Gary Johnson is a proponent of eliminating the income tax and having a consumption tax, Ron Paul is a proponent of getting rid of the income tax and just keeping the rest of our taxes. They both also want to reduce spending a lot, to reduce the need for taxes, but neither of them want to entirely get rid of taxes or the entire government, and I'd say they are the two most prominent libertarians currently.

My self, I'm a libertarian that wants to keep the income tax.
I was thinking about the theory of libertarianism, not the political party that calls itself Libertarian.  The logical conclusion is that libertarianism must lead to anarchism, I see no way around it. 
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Jeremy E. on September 02, 2016, 02:27:39 PM

The problem with the Libertarian philosophy is if you take it to the logical conclusion, there is no government. There is anarchy.


No, not at all.  You might as well say that any position other than anarchism, taken to its logical conclusion, leads to communism. 

There are different logical conclusions you could reach following libertarian philosophy, and one of the them is that government should do nothing other than provide public goods and protect the negative rights of its citizens. 
But how does it provide "public goods" without taxation?  How does it "protect the negative rights" without taxation?  If logically consistent - it must lead to anarchism.
Most libertarians want to eliminate income tax, but not taxes completely, for instance Gary Johnson is a proponent of eliminating the income tax and having a consumption tax, Ron Paul is a proponent of getting rid of the income tax and just keeping the rest of our taxes. They both also want to reduce spending a lot, to reduce the need for taxes, but neither of them want to entirely get rid of taxes or the entire government, and I'd say they are the two most prominent libertarians currently.

My self, I'm a libertarian that wants to keep the income tax.
I was thinking about the theory of libertarianism, not the political party that calls itself Libertarian.  The logical conclusion is that libertarianism must lead to anarchism, I see no way around it.
If we're just talking about theories, I'm sure you'd love the theory of communism, but this is reality and I think the US needs to move a lot closer to libertarian than where it is now.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: dividendman on September 02, 2016, 02:42:53 PM
I was thinking about the theory of libertarianism, not the political party that calls itself Libertarian.  The logical conclusion is that libertarianism must lead to anarchism, I see no way around it.

That's not true. At a minimum, libertarianism requires a robust court system that must be funded with taxes. Why? Because most disputes would be handled between individuals rather than the government acting on behalf of the people.

For example, in an extremely libertarian world, there would be no pollution regulations. However, one of the key aspects of libertarianism is that you are free to do whatever you want so long as you don't harm others. So, there would be lawsuits galore about the affects of pollution and people/companies would be forced to pay.

You would also need an army, police, jails, etc. that would need to be funded by taxes. 

You wouldn't necessarily need the departments of: agriculture, education, commerce, energy, HHS, HUD, Interior, Labor, Transportation, Treasury, or Veterans affairs.

You would need the departments of Defense, Homeland Security and Justice. So, still a government and not anarchy.

Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: TexasRunner on September 02, 2016, 02:45:49 PM
Me.  Still hoping for the 4 years of Ron Paul that this country needs.

Don't hold your breath...  :(

I am closest to libertarian than any other.  There quite a few of us on here...
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on September 02, 2016, 03:46:47 PM
I was thinking about the theory of libertarianism, not the political party that calls itself Libertarian.  The logical conclusion is that libertarianism must lead to anarchism, I see no way around it.

That's not true. At a minimum, libertarianism requires a robust court system that must be funded with taxes. Why? Because most disputes would be handled between individuals rather than the government acting on behalf of the people.

For example, in an extremely libertarian world, there would be no pollution regulations. However, one of the key aspects of libertarianism is that you are free to do whatever you want so long as you don't harm others. So, there would be lawsuits galore about the affects of pollution and people/companies would be forced to pay.

You would also need an army, police, jails, etc. that would need to be funded by taxes. 

You wouldn't necessarily need the departments of: agriculture, education, commerce, energy, HHS, HUD, Interior, Labor, Transportation, Treasury, or Veterans affairs.

You would need the departments of Defense, Homeland Security and Justice. So, still a government and not anarchy.
What your describing can't be squared with libertarianism (small "L").  If taxation is theft, then it can have no exceptions.  What if I am a pacifist and refuse to pay taxes for courts or police, what will you do to me?  We all know the answer to that.  Your system is not libertarian, sorry.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Northwestie on September 02, 2016, 04:14:11 PM
Wouldn't need a department of Interior.  Let's run that one to ground as it's in my area of expertise.   So - lets say then the lands owned by the US government - BLM, USFS, Park Service, etc. then have no employees.  Opening act - rape and pillage.  Folks just go in and start mining, hunting, grazing, and logging with no restrictions. 

Oh - lemme guess - these lands would be turned over to private entities who, though the goodness of their hearts, would manage them as good as these public agencies.  If not, we could sue them.   

Unicorn land.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: wenchsenior on September 02, 2016, 04:34:42 PM
Wouldn't need a department of Interior.  Let's run that one to ground as it's in my area of expertise.   So - lets say then the lands owned by the US government - BLM, USFS, Park Service, etc. then have no employees.  Opening act - rape and pillage.  Folks just go in and start mining, hunting, grazing, and logging with no restrictions. 

Oh - lemme guess - these lands would be turned over to private entities who, though the goodness of their hearts, would manage them as good as these public agencies.  If not, we could sue them.   

Unicorn land.

That scenario right there is the reason that even a hint of a Lib candidate getting into a position of real national power fills me with skin-crawling horror. As someone whose primary voting interest is in maintaining the health of ecological systems, I immediately envision an army of private companies buying access to formerly public land. If even one company gets even temporary access to e.g., an intact old growth forest, they could have it completely destroyed in a matter of days. An entire ecosystem (and all of its obligate species) just fucking wiped out.  Even in the best-managed recovery scenario in the world, it would take hundreds of years to restore it, if you ever could.

The problem is, so many species and ecosystems can be damaged so severely (sometimes irrevocably) in such a short amount of time. If profit is the motive, and it usually is because humanity is gross, Libs in power would result in absolute decimation of natural resources.

Oops, sorry we got first dibs on this public land, formerly under federal management for sustainability and multiple use. We mined it and left toxic contamination all over. Guess you better sue us now? FUCK that noise.   
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Northwestie on September 02, 2016, 04:43:36 PM
Luckily the Libertarian flame-throwers have about as much chance of gaining power as say, I know, Mr. Trump.   Actually much, much less.   Thank Dog.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: libertarian4321 on September 02, 2016, 04:50:12 PM
I'm a long-time Libertarian and will certainly be voting for Gary Johnson, not either of the national embarrassments (Hillary and Trump).
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on September 02, 2016, 04:52:08 PM
They would get rid of Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid.  For me that would be a horrible thing.  They would have scores of elderly literally dying in the streets.  No thanks!
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Spork on September 02, 2016, 05:18:30 PM
Libertarians are really not as crazy as you want to believe they are.

Do they want to get rid of Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid?   (or Dept of Interior or ...) 

First off: you really don't have to worry about us.  We're small.  We're infinitesimally small.  We're not getting elected.
Secondly: We're not (necessarily) stupid or heartless.  Any plan to dismember Social Security (for example) would likely be a many-decades phase out.  People that paid into it, would get the pay out.  Period.

Personally, if we as a nation could accomplish the following, I'd be so ecstatic that I'd have to change underwear:
* phase out (quickly this time!) war where we are not absolutely directly in the firing line.
* stop giving welfare to rich people.  This means huge corporate handouts (no matter what their political affiliation is).  In a lesser sense, this probably affects the ER community with things like income tax deductions for big ass houses and a big portion of health care subsidies.  Yes, this bites me.  I'm okay with it.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: marty998 on September 02, 2016, 05:27:25 PM
They would get rid of Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid.  For me that would be a horrible thing.  They would have scores of elderly literally dying in the streets.  No thanks!

A bit over the top no?

Personally I'm not sure you could ever get one Libertarian to speak / be a leader on behalf of all. The point of Libertarianism to me is that there is a diversity of views and ways you can live your life that are tolerated and encouraged.

Hard for a political party to keep free thinkers under control :D
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Northwestie on September 02, 2016, 05:28:09 PM

Personally, if we as a nation could accomplish the following, I'd be so ecstatic that I'd have to change underwear:
* phase out (quickly this time!) war where we are not absolutely directly in the firing line.
* stop giving welfare to rich people.  This means huge corporate handouts (no matter what their political affiliation is).  In a lesser sense, this probably affects the ER community with things like income tax deductions for big ass houses and a big portion of health care subsidies.  Yes, this bites me.  I'm okay with it.

I think most folks - of either party, would say these are good places to start. It's just when I look at the libertarian platform they put forward there's a host of other items that make me cringe.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: libertarian4321 on September 02, 2016, 05:30:48 PM
They would get rid of Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid.  For me that would be a horrible thing.  They would have scores of elderly literally dying in the streets.  No thanks!

Oh please.

The USA functioned for ~160 years without the social insecurity system.  I assure you, there were not "scores of elderly dying in the streets" prior to 1935 (the start of the social insecurity system).
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Northwestie on September 02, 2016, 05:31:18 PM
They would get rid of Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid.  For me that would be a horrible thing.  They would have scores of elderly literally dying in the streets.  No thanks!

A bit over the top no?



No.  From the current Libertarian Presidential Platform:

Retirement planning is the responsibility of the individual, not the government. Libertarians would phase out the current government-sponsored Social Security system and transition to a private voluntary system. The proper and most effective source of help for the poor is the voluntary efforts of private groups and individuals. We believe members of society will become even more charitable and civil society will be strengthened as government reduces its activity in this realm.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Spork on September 02, 2016, 05:34:05 PM
They would get rid of Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid.  For me that would be a horrible thing.  They would have scores of elderly literally dying in the streets.  No thanks!

A bit over the top no?



No.  From the current Libertarian Presidential Platform:

Retirement planning is the responsibility of the individual, not the government. Libertarians would phase out the current government-sponsored Social Security system and transition to a private voluntary system. The proper and most effective source of help for the poor is the voluntary efforts of private groups and individuals. We believe members of society will become even more charitable and civil society will be strengthened as government reduces its activity in this realm.

You bolded the part that said "phase out".  It's right there. 

I don't mean to be a dickhead.  But you're trolling.  The point of the thread is "hey, friends, who's a libertarian, let's be friends."
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Northwestie on September 02, 2016, 05:36:01 PM
They would get rid of Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid.  For me that would be a horrible thing.  They would have scores of elderly literally dying in the streets.  No thanks!

Oh please.

The USA functioned for ~160 years without the social insecurity system.  I assure you, there were not "scores of elderly dying in the streets" prior to 1935 (the start of the social insecurity system).

Almost 90 percent of people aged 65 and older receive some of their family income from Social Security.   Without Social Security benefits, 44.4 percent of elderly Americans would have incomes below the official poverty line, all else being equal; with Social Security benefits, only 9.1 percent do.  These benefits lift 15.3 million elderly Americans — including 9.0 million women — above the poverty line.

In addition - prior to SS, folks worked much longer.  Then about 60% of men worked past the age of 66 - now that is about 16%.   Society as a whole has decided the dog-eat-dog model works better for some than others and one measure of our integrity is how we treat the less fortunate among us. 
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Northwestie on September 02, 2016, 05:38:30 PM
They would get rid of Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid.  For me that would be a horrible thing.  They would have scores of elderly literally dying in the streets.  No thanks!

A bit over the top no?



No.  From the current Libertarian Presidential Platform:

Retirement planning is the responsibility of the individual, not the government. Libertarians would phase out the current government-sponsored Social Security system and transition to a private voluntary system. The proper and most effective source of help for the poor is the voluntary efforts of private groups and individuals. We believe members of society will become even more charitable and civil society will be strengthened as government reduces its activity in this realm.

You bolded the part that said "phase out".  It's right there. 

I don't mean to be a dickhead.  But you're trolling.  The point of the thread is "hey, friends, who's a libertarian, let's be friends."

No - the intention was to point out that yes - one of the party platforms is to get rid of social security - it says so on the current website.  I never said anything about cutting it immediately - did I?   Just that I think getting rid of SS is not an idea worthy of consideration. 
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Jeremy E. on September 02, 2016, 05:39:08 PM
They would get rid of Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid.  For me that would be a horrible thing.  They would have scores of elderly literally dying in the streets.  No thanks!
Yep, if libertarian is elected president, Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid will be instantly abolished and everyone will let elderly just die in the streets.
Lets disect this a little bit.... First off, presidents don't have the power to abolish social security, medicare or medicaid. They can at best, sign a bill that abolishes them, but because half the republicans and all the democrats are okay with those social programs, that won't happen. Secondly, people are not so cold blooded that they would just let elderly die in the streets anyways, it's even federal law that hospitals have to help people, regardless of whether or not they can pay.

Most libertarians are not so hardcore that they want to completely abolish the government or taxes, and assuming that all libertarians agree completely to the hardcore theory and every policy within is ludicrous.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Spork on September 02, 2016, 06:02:47 PM
They would get rid of Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid.  For me that would be a horrible thing.  They would have scores of elderly literally dying in the streets.  No thanks!
Yep, if libertarian is elected president, Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid will be instantly abolished and everyone will let elderly just die in the streets.
Lets disect this a little bit.... First off, presidents don't have the power to abolish social security, medicare or medicaid. They can at best, sign a bill that abolishes them, but because half the republicans and all the democrats are okay with those social programs, that won't happen. Secondly, people are not so cold blooded that they would just let elderly die in the streets anyways, it's even federal law that hospitals have to help people, regardless of whether or not they can pay.

Most libertarians are not so hardcore that they want to completely abolish the government or taxes, and assuming that all libertarians agree completely to the hardcore theory and every policy within is ludicrous.

Bless you.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Cyaphas on September 02, 2016, 06:40:34 PM

No - the intention was to point out that yes - one of the party platforms is to get rid of social security - it says so on the current website.  I never said anything about cutting it immediately - did I?   Just that I think getting rid of SS is not an idea worthy of consideration.


The statistics you site earlier are based on an entire generation that paid into SS and have been told their entire lives it'll be there. Meanwhile, they reaped the benefits of their government spending it as it came in. They've bet their retirements on it being there.

Social security is and continues to be one of the largest generational thefts in history. It's also a massive hidden tax. The money is paid into the general fund and spent. If someone dies before they collect a dime, the government keeps everything, they already spent, and all of the wealth and production is stolen from their heirs. Also, it's a massive cudgel for the Federal government to use as a balckmail tool to collect information and money from private citizens.

Also, it's going bankrupt. BREAKING NEWS! THIS JUST IN! the government needs more money to run one of it's programs.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: dignam on September 03, 2016, 05:47:18 AM
^ Ah, don't get my blood boiling about SS...as a reluctant Millennial, I've been told my whole life that I will not see as big a chunk of SS as I put into it.  Basically I've been told "Sorry, better luck next time!"

From my paycheck far before I was into politics at all; the thought of a government program saving MY money for ME just rubbed me the wrong way.  I was 14 at the time.  Cherry on top is Boomers are going to dry up the fund so we're left with something like 75% of what we were promised (I think Gen X is in trouble too as the payments will diminish starting around 2034 unless big changes happen).

But I digress with my complaining.  I think there is a lot of misunderstanding about libertarianism.  Part of the problem is there is no clear definition of what it means; it varies by source.  No one in their right mind thinks instantly abolishing government programs is a good idea.  There are definitely some programs/agencies I think should remain; the EPA and FAA (well, Dept. of Transportation mostly) are a couple examples.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: bacchi on September 03, 2016, 10:21:34 AM
  There are definitely some programs/agencies I think should remain; the EPA and FAA (well, Dept. of Transportation mostly) are a couple examples.

I'd abolish the DOT as an unnecessary burden on states' rights and taxpayers. I'd also gut the DOD.

I'm only partially joking as I'm more of a "statist." However, this is the problem. Everyone has a favorite department that is sacrosanct.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: dividendman on September 03, 2016, 11:33:59 AM
Wouldn't need a department of Interior.  Let's run that one to ground as it's in my area of expertise.   So - lets say then the lands owned by the US government - BLM, USFS, Park Service, etc. then have no employees.  Opening act - rape and pillage.  Folks just go in and start mining, hunting, grazing, and logging with no restrictions. 

Oh - lemme guess - these lands would be turned over to private entities who, though the goodness of their hearts, would manage them as good as these public agencies.  If not, we could sue them.   

Unicorn land.


That scenario right there is the reason that even a hint of a Lib candidate getting into a position of real national power fills me with skin-crawling horror. As someone whose primary voting interest is in maintaining the health of ecological systems, I immediately envision an army of private companies buying access to formerly public land. If even one company gets even temporary access to e.g., an intact old growth forest, they could have it completely destroyed in a matter of days. An entire ecosystem (and all of its obligate species) just fucking wiped out.  Even in the best-managed recovery scenario in the world, it would take hundreds of years to restore it, if you ever could.

The problem is, so many species and ecosystems can be damaged so severely (sometimes irrevocably) in such a short amount of time. If profit is the motive, and it usually is because humanity is gross, Libs in power would result in absolute decimation of natural resources.

Oops, sorry we got first dibs on this public land, formerly under federal management for sustainability and multiple use. We mined it and left toxic contamination all over. Guess you better sue us now? FUCK that noise.

Except I didn't say abolish the department of the interior. I said in the most extreme libertarian views you may not necessarily have those federal departments. I was countering the claim that someone made saying libertarian means anarchy. I was saying you must have a DoD and DoJ at a minimum, so not anarchy.

Most libertarians would not abolish most departments.

To me it's plane with two axes where we can fit politically. The x axis can be fiscal liberal(left)/conservative(right) and the y axis can be social liberal(up)/conservative(down). If you are in the upper right quadrant (socially liberal, fiscally conservative) in such a chart you're a libertarian of some degree to me. So, there are levels of extreme in that quadrant on both axes. Most people are not extreme on either axis.

Democrats fall mostly into the fiscal liberal and socially liberal top left quadrant.
Republicans fall mostly into the fiscal conservative (at least with how they talk) and socially conservative bottom right quadrant.

A fascist state/party that wants to impose both social and fiscal policy goes into the bottom left quadrant - think North Korea on the far left and down on the chart.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: yuka on September 03, 2016, 03:04:07 PM
Wouldn't need a department of Interior.  Let's run that one to ground as it's in my area of expertise.   So - lets say then the lands owned by the US government - BLM, USFS, Park Service, etc. then have no employees.  Opening act - rape and pillage.  Folks just go in and start mining, hunting, grazing, and logging with no restrictions. 

Oh - lemme guess - these lands would be turned over to private entities who, though the goodness of their hearts, would manage them as good as these public agencies.  If not, we could sue them.   

Unicorn land.


That scenario right there is the reason that even a hint of a Lib candidate getting into a position of real national power fills me with skin-crawling horror. As someone whose primary voting interest is in maintaining the health of ecological systems, I immediately envision an army of private companies buying access to formerly public land. If even one company gets even temporary access to e.g., an intact old growth forest, they could have it completely destroyed in a matter of days. An entire ecosystem (and all of its obligate species) just fucking wiped out.  Even in the best-managed recovery scenario in the world, it would take hundreds of years to restore it, if you ever could.

The problem is, so many species and ecosystems can be damaged so severely (sometimes irrevocably) in such a short amount of time. If profit is the motive, and it usually is because humanity is gross, Libs in power would result in absolute decimation of natural resources.

Oops, sorry we got first dibs on this public land, formerly under federal management for sustainability and multiple use. We mined it and left toxic contamination all over. Guess you better sue us now? FUCK that noise.

Except I didn't say abolish the department of the interior. I said in the most extreme libertarian views you may not necessarily have those federal departments. I was countering the claim that someone made saying libertarian means anarchy. I was saying you must have a DoD and DoJ at a minimum, so not anarchy.

Most libertarians would not abolish most departments.

To me it's plane with two axes where we can fit politically. The x axis can be fiscal liberal(left)/conservative(right) and the y axis can be social liberal(up)/conservative(down). If you are in the upper right quadrant (socially liberal, fiscally conservative) in such a chart you're a libertarian of some degree to me. So, there are levels of extreme in that quadrant on both axes. Most people are not extreme on either axis.

Democrats fall mostly into the fiscal liberal and socially liberal top left quadrant.
Republicans fall mostly into the fiscal conservative (at least with how they talk) and socially conservative bottom right quadrant.

A fascist state/party that wants to impose both social and fiscal policy goes into the bottom left quadrant - think North Korea on the far left and down on the chart.

I would not put US Democrats and Republicans in opposite corners. They both have pretty serious authoritarian streaks.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: l2jperry on September 03, 2016, 03:40:09 PM
Another libertarian here unaffiliated with any party, but Gary Johnson will be getting my vote this year.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Libertea on September 05, 2016, 04:12:09 PM
I would not put US Democrats and Republicans in opposite corners. They both have pretty serious authoritarian streaks.
Agree.  That four corner chart describes the ideal, but the truth is that most capital D Democrats and capital R Republicans are just authoritarians in different wolf's clothing.  Go try to be non-PC on a college campus and see what happens to your "freedom of speech."  And Republicans are falling over themselves to spend more of other people's money to prove how compassionate they are.

The problem we have is that most people don't get the concept that if you don't protect other people's rights to do what they want (within the limit of not interfering with the rights of others), even if they're doing things you don't like (say, discrimination by private individuals), then those others have just as much ability to interfere with you doing the things that YOU want.  So if I want to fight discrimination in a free society (and I do), the best way to do it isn't to force other individuals to do what I think they should do at the point of a gun, because then they'll just turn around and do the same thing to me on some other issue where they have the might and the majority.  The libertarian philosophy is that the best way to change society is to use economic pressure and moral suasion to change people's minds and practices rather than force.  Obviously, of course, the devil is in the details.  But that's the general principle.

(Note: It's important to differentiate between what the government does and what the individual does.  The government, precisely because it possesses a monopoly on force, must NEVER be permitted to discriminate.  But unfortunately, allowing people to make free decisions means that some individuals may indeed choose to discriminate or otherwise behave abominably.  And yes, in order for me to have the freedom to make moral decisions without coercion, I have to grant others the right to make immoral choices, and I must accept that sometimes they will choose to do so.)
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: MoneyCat on September 05, 2016, 04:44:48 PM
(http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-FBZM930CySo/VZfASHdvwzI/AAAAAAAAKus/HKvBPoG72OQ/s1600/somalia.png)
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Cyaphas on September 05, 2016, 05:04:18 PM
(http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-FBZM930CySo/VZfASHdvwzI/AAAAAAAAKus/HKvBPoG72OQ/s1600/somalia.png)

Detroit: After 100 years of prevailing wages and a Democratic stronghold, it's borderline paradise!
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: MoneyCat on September 05, 2016, 06:18:36 PM
(http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-FBZM930CySo/VZfASHdvwzI/AAAAAAAAKus/HKvBPoG72OQ/s1600/somalia.png)

Detroit: After 100 years of prevailing wages and a Democratic stronghold, it's borderline paradise!

Democrats are always better than Republicans by pretty much every measure. Here are some charts to help you understand this: http://politicsthatwork.com/blog/which-party-is-better-for-the-economy.php (http://politicsthatwork.com/blog/which-party-is-better-for-the-economy.php)

Good thing we have Democrats around to be Libertarians' parents before they get themselves into trouble.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Cwadda on September 05, 2016, 06:56:05 PM
I'm a libertarian and will be voting for Gary Johnson. Confirmed, no more questions.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Cyaphas on September 05, 2016, 07:48:21 PM
(http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-FBZM930CySo/VZfASHdvwzI/AAAAAAAAKus/HKvBPoG72OQ/s1600/somalia.png)

Detroit: After 100 years of prevailing wages and a Democratic stronghold, it's borderline paradise!

Democrats are always better than Republicans by pretty much every measure. Here are some charts to help you understand this: http://politicsthatwork.com/blog/which-party-is-better-for-the-economy.php (http://politicsthatwork.com/blog/which-party-is-better-for-the-economy.php)

Good thing we have Democrats around to be Libertarians' parents before they get themselves into trouble.

Good thing we're not talking about Republicans. A deflection into an ad hominem.

I'm just so glad we've got all of this government around to take care of us. If we didn't no one would have a job!
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: MoneyCat on September 05, 2016, 08:03:59 PM
(http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-FBZM930CySo/VZfASHdvwzI/AAAAAAAAKus/HKvBPoG72OQ/s1600/somalia.png)

Detroit: After 100 years of prevailing wages and a Democratic stronghold, it's borderline paradise!

Democrats are always better than Republicans by pretty much every measure. Here are some charts to help you understand this: http://politicsthatwork.com/blog/which-party-is-better-for-the-economy.php (http://politicsthatwork.com/blog/which-party-is-better-for-the-economy.php)

Good thing we have Democrats around to be Libertarians' parents before they get themselves into trouble.

Good thing we're not talking about Republicans. A deflection into an ad hominem.

I'm just so glad we've got all of this government around to take care of us. If we didn't no one would have a job!

Libertarians are just Republicans without religion who don't think George W. Bush went far enough. Everyone knows that.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Libertea on September 06, 2016, 07:02:48 AM
Democrats are always better than Republicans by pretty much every measure. Here are some charts to help you understand this: http://politicsthatwork.com/blog/which-party-is-better-for-the-economy.php

Good thing we have Democrats around to be Libertarians' parents before they get themselves into trouble.
Dude, you're welcome to your own opinions, and feel free to start an anti-libertarian thread if that's your thing.  But I'd really appreciate it if you'd stop trolling in mine.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Nick_Miller on September 06, 2016, 07:12:12 AM
If everyone was environmentally responsible, sane, hard-working, peaceful, etc., then yes we could have a more (not entirely) libertarian system.  But people aren't like that. Many people are really messed up. People are going to fail to save for retirement. Do we let them die on the streets? People who should NEVER be parents will have kids, sometimes tons of them! Who feeds those kids when the parents don't? People will be selfish and shoot for short-term economic gain instead of caring about the greater good (i.e, the health of our planet). Someone has to inspect food, water, air, etc., to make sure it's safe.

I read the Libertarian party platform. I don't see how people can get behind those ideas, given the imperfect world we live in.

Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Classical_Liberal on September 06, 2016, 08:12:46 AM
If everyone was environmentally responsible, sane, hard-working, peaceful, etc., then yes we could have a more (not entirely) libertarian system.  But people aren't like that. Many people are really messed up. People are going to fail to save for retirement. Do we let them die on the streets? People who should NEVER be parents will have kids, sometimes tons of them! Who feeds those kids when the parents don't? People will be selfish and shoot for short-term economic gain instead of caring about the greater good (i.e, the health of our planet). Someone has to inspect food, water, air, etc., to make sure it's safe.

I read the Libertarian party platform. I don't see how people can get behind those ideas, given the imperfect world we live in.

So, let's see if I get this right.  If every individual shared your exact ideals, then you'd be "OK"  with limited government.  Since that's not the case, we need more government to use force to make others share your ideals.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on September 06, 2016, 08:18:55 AM
If we're just talking about theories, I'm sure you'd love the theory of communism, but this is reality and I think the US needs to move a lot closer to libertarian than where it is now.

Can you point to a few of the model Libertarian countries you're basing your comment on?

I tend to view Libertarianism as being well towards the extreme end of the capitalism side of the capitalism-communism spectrum.  The United States is already pretty far towards the capitalist side than most other developed countries.  My experience has led me to believe that it's generally better to be somewhere in the middle of that scale rather than pushing towards either extreme, so I'd be interested in hearing why you think libertarianism would be significantly helpful for your country.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Nick_Miller on September 06, 2016, 08:29:39 AM
If everyone was environmentally responsible, sane, hard-working, peaceful, etc., then yes we could have a more (not entirely) libertarian system.  But people aren't like that. Many people are really messed up. People are going to fail to save for retirement. Do we let them die on the streets? People who should NEVER be parents will have kids, sometimes tons of them! Who feeds those kids when the parents don't? People will be selfish and shoot for short-term economic gain instead of caring about the greater good (i.e, the health of our planet). Someone has to inspect food, water, air, etc., to make sure it's safe.

I read the Libertarian party platform. I don't see how people can get behind those ideas, given the imperfect world we live in.

So, let's see if I get this right.  If every individual shared your exact ideals, then you'd be "OK"  with limited government.  Since that's not the case, we need more government to use force to make others share your ideals.

Uh, I was just describing decent people. I honestly didn't know "environmentally responsible, sane, hard-working, peaceful" people were some sort of outlier group.

But yes, for the record, I have no interest in living in some sort of wild west environment with a bunch of destructive, insane, lazy, violent people (see I flipped them all around) with no government control over said people.

Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Northwestie on September 06, 2016, 09:27:16 AM
If everyone was environmentally responsible, sane, hard-working, peaceful, etc., then yes we could have a more (not entirely) libertarian system.  But people aren't like that. Many people are really messed up. People are going to fail to save for retirement. Do we let them die on the streets? People who should NEVER be parents will have kids, sometimes tons of them! Who feeds those kids when the parents don't? People will be selfish and shoot for short-term economic gain instead of caring about the greater good (i.e, the health of our planet). Someone has to inspect food, water, air, etc., to make sure it's safe.

I read the Libertarian party platform. I don't see how people can get behind those ideas, given the imperfect world we live in.

So, let's see if I get this right.  If every individual shared your exact ideals, then you'd be "OK"  with limited government.  Since that's not the case, we need more government to use force to make others share your ideals.

Uh, I was just describing decent people. I honestly didn't know "environmentally responsible, sane, hard-working, peaceful" people were some sort of outlier group.

But yes, for the record, I have no interest in living in some sort of wild west environment with a bunch of destructive, insane, lazy, violent people (see I flipped them all around) with no government control over said people.

Libertarian is an interesting idea on the commune level - but the model isn't expandable to a state-wide, never-the-less country-wide level.  And the failure of its adherents to explain how it could be is the reason it still sits in the discards of political thought.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Classical_Liberal on September 06, 2016, 09:40:20 AM
Libertarian is an interesting idea on the commune level - but the model isn't expandable to a state-wide, never-the-less country-wide level.  And the failure of its adherents to explain how it could be is the reason it still sits in the discards of political thought.

I would agree with this statement.  My original post in this thread spoke of how there probably has to be more government to maintain order and fair play in modern society than I'd prefer. libertarianism in a pure form would likely fail in any large, heterogeneous society of sufficient complexity.   However, it doesn't change my opinion that both of the political parties in the US have moved too far down the large gov't & authoritarian path.  Both, of course, wish to force the populace to do different things.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Jeremy E. on September 06, 2016, 09:42:24 AM
Quote from Gary Johnson,
"I do think that climate change is occuring, that it is man-caused. One of the proposals that I think is a very libertarian proposal, and I'm just open to this, is taxing carbon emission that may have the result of being self-regulating."
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Classical_Liberal on September 06, 2016, 09:48:57 AM
Uh, I was just describing decent people. I honestly didn't know "environmentally responsible, sane, hard-working, peaceful" people were some sort of outlier group.

But yes, for the record, I have no interest in living in some sort of wild west environment with a bunch of destructive, insane, lazy, violent people (see I flipped them all around) with no government control over said people.

The problem is, all people are sometimes destructive, lazy, insane (as in not making a logical choice), and not peaceful.  The world isn't black and white.  If government uses force to make an individual live a specific tone of grey, there had better be a very good reason for doing so, not just because it happens to be your favorite color. 
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Jrr85 on September 06, 2016, 02:00:26 PM
I was thinking about the theory of libertarianism, not the political party that calls itself Libertarian.  The logical conclusion is that libertarianism must lead to anarchism, I see no way around it.

That's not true. At a minimum, libertarianism requires a robust court system that must be funded with taxes. Why? Because most disputes would be handled between individuals rather than the government acting on behalf of the people.

For example, in an extremely libertarian world, there would be no pollution regulations. However, one of the key aspects of libertarianism is that you are free to do whatever you want so long as you don't harm others. So, there would be lawsuits galore about the affects of pollution and people/companies would be forced to pay.

You would also need an army, police, jails, etc. that would need to be funded by taxes. 

You wouldn't necessarily need the departments of: agriculture, education, commerce, energy, HHS, HUD, Interior, Labor, Transportation, Treasury, or Veterans affairs.

You would need the departments of Defense, Homeland Security and Justice. So, still a government and not anarchy.
What your describing can't be squared with libertarianism (small "L").  If taxation is theft, then it can have no exceptions.  What if I am a pacifist and refuse to pay taxes for courts or police, what will you do to me?  We all know the answer to that.  Your system is not libertarian, sorry.

What you're describing isn't libertarianism (small "L").  There are libertarians that believe that, but that's not the definition of libertarianism any more than the definition of "liberal" (which somehow is the word we use to describe "statist") is communist.  Being a statist doesn't mean that you have to be a communist.  Being a libertarian doesn't mean you have to be an anarchist. 
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: BDWW on September 06, 2016, 04:29:11 PM
I was thinking about the theory of libertarianism, not the political party that calls itself Libertarian.  The logical conclusion is that libertarianism must lead to anarchism, I see no way around it.

That's not true. At a minimum, libertarianism requires a robust court system that must be funded with taxes. Why? Because most disputes would be handled between individuals rather than the government acting on behalf of the people.

For example, in an extremely libertarian world, there would be no pollution regulations. However, one of the key aspects of libertarianism is that you are free to do whatever you want so long as you don't harm others. So, there would be lawsuits galore about the affects of pollution and people/companies would be forced to pay.

You would also need an army, police, jails, etc. that would need to be funded by taxes. 

You wouldn't necessarily need the departments of: agriculture, education, commerce, energy, HHS, HUD, Interior, Labor, Transportation, Treasury, or Veterans affairs.

You would need the departments of Defense, Homeland Security and Justice. So, still a government and not anarchy.
What your describing can't be squared with libertarianism (small "L").  If taxation is theft, then it can have no exceptions.  What if I am a pacifist and refuse to pay taxes for courts or police, what will you do to me?  We all know the answer to that.  Your system is not libertarian, sorry.

What you're describing isn't libertarianism (small "L").  There are libertarians that believe that, but that's not the definition of libertarianism any more than the definition of "liberal" (which somehow is the word we use to describe "statist") is communist.  Being a statist doesn't mean that you have to be a communist.  Being a libertarian doesn't mean you have to be an anarchist.

jim555 seems to be the only one espousing such a dogmatic view of libertarianism, and then somehow ascribing it to adherents. It appears to be some sort of "No true scotsmen" argument.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Kris on September 07, 2016, 12:44:12 PM
^^^ Regarding which libertarianism is the "true" version, and the presence of absence of dogmatism:

I read Ayn Rand when I was about 19, and thought it was genius. Until someone older and wiser than I was at the time helped me walk through her trains of thought to their logical conclusions, and I realized that most of what she said was, at bottom absurd and/or sort of horrible.

And even today, when I hear or read people describing their particular versions of their libertarian beliefs, if they talk long enough and in detail enough, eventually I come to the conclusion that most of what they say is, at bottom absurd and/or sort of horrible.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: BDWW on September 07, 2016, 03:38:17 PM
^^^ Regarding which libertarianism is the "true" version, and the presence of absence of dogmatism:

I read Ayn Rand when I was about 19, and thought it was genius. Until someone older and wiser than I was at the time helped me walk through her trains of thought to their logical conclusions, and I realized that most of what she said was, at bottom absurd and/or sort of horrible.

And even today, when I hear or read people describing their particular versions of their libertarian beliefs, if they talk long enough and in detail enough, eventually I come to the conclusion that most of what they say is, at bottom absurd and/or sort of horrible.

When I hear or read people describing their particular versions of their Democratic/Republican beliefs, if they talk long enough and in detail enough, eventually I come to the conclusion that most of what they say is, at bottom absurd and/or sort of horrible.

Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: yuka on September 07, 2016, 03:51:03 PM
So, I will almost certainly vote for Gary Johnson in November. My fiancee says she likes him except for his foreign policy. That would be fine with me, except she doesn't seem to care about any important foreign policy; all she brings up is ISIS. From my perspective, that doesn't even break the top 5 issues in foreign policy, depending on how you count them.

Anyway, I guess I'm wondering how people here feel about the weak-wristed stance we seem to be putting out to the world. Some examples of this, and my foreign policy concerns:

Granted, I'd rather we kept to ourselves more. However, we seem to be putting ourselves out there while simultaneously reinforcing to everyone that we're not to be taken seriously, which is the worst possible course. Put another way, we're speaking loudly but carrying a small stick.

Or am I missing the forest for the trees? Are these small snubs meaningless in some larger context that has escaped me?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: dividendman on September 07, 2016, 04:16:57 PM
So, I will almost certainly vote for Gary Johnson in November. My fiancee says she likes him except for his foreign policy. That would be fine with me, except she doesn't seem to care about any important foreign policy; all she brings up is ISIS. From my perspective, that doesn't even break the top 5 issues in foreign policy, depending on how you count them.

Anyway, I guess I'm wondering how people here feel about the weak-wristed stance we seem to be putting out to the world. Some examples of this, and my foreign policy concerns:
  • China's ignoring the UN ruling on island building, and our lack of response.
  • Our non-response to Iran's swarming of our patrol boats and destroyers, most recently 7 around a patrol boat, with one going DIW directly in front of our vessel ,requiring a maneuver
  • Our non-response Russia flying low over a navy ship, and now today, intercepting one of our planes at a range of 10 FEET.
  • Our non-response to Chinese and Russian state-sponsored CNE/CNA (and possible EW?) against the US.
  • North Korea's increasingly aggressive stance.

Granted, I'd rather we kept to ourselves more. However, we seem to be putting ourselves out there while simultaneously reinforcing to everyone that we're not to be taken seriously, which is the worst possible course. Put another way, we're speaking loudly but carrying a small stick.

Or am I missing the forest for the trees? Are these small snubs meaningless in some larger context that has escaped me?

Do you suggest the US should start downing Russian planes in international airspace, sinking Iranian ships in international waters, bombing (or building) islands in the China seas?

You mention how the responses have been weak. What do you suggest as the responses? What does the US gain from responding in a more forceful manner?

North Korea has always been "aggressive". If the sinking of a South Korean submarine isn't going to get any response, why should some words/missile tests? Note that the US and South Korea remain at war with the DPRK. If the US is really at war, send in the troops and win, right?

Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: BTDretire on September 10, 2016, 07:24:04 AM
Not me, but I live 2 blocks from a library!

                :-)
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: iris lily on September 10, 2016, 08:25:54 AM
In my mind there is a difference between the Libertarian political party and having libertarian leaning political ideals. Personally I lean more libertarian than either political party, but at the same time I realize that a pure Libertarian philosophy is not compatible with a functioning government.

The problem with the Libertarian philosophy is if you take it to the logical conclusion, there is no government. There is anarchy.

Plus it is really easy to be libertarian when you are rich, white and male which makes me wonder if the reason I am drawn to it is muddled by my privilege. Just writing this makes me think I need a therapist ;)

A year or two ago, I'd have said a definite yes.

But now, I'm less and less Libertarian as the years go on (mostly due to the hardcore nuts online who put forth too extreme of a view with no room for compromise), but I still identify as mostly libertarian and there's no other party I could identify with.

I'd guess I'll eventually identify as non-partisan, but we'll see.
Definitely agree with all of that!  :)

Recognizing my privilege has absolutely moved me away from Libertarianism in some aspects towards more social programs/safety nets rather than a "bootstrap yourself" philosophy.

I have always recognized my privilege, my parents made a big deal about it (stable family, middle class,educated.) In my lily white suburb in my lily white state, we were Democrats and we believed that Nanny G needed to hand out stuff for the poor and downtrodden.

Then I moved to the urban core, an area of urban  pioneering, where people put blood and sweat and their own money (banks wouldnt loan to them ) into saving fabulous old houses and building a community of tough urban DIYers. It is a daily issue to address the crime that comes with  living among the urban poor. We were two blocks away from public housing high rise towers (who remembers that social program gone wrong?)  I found just how f--cked up gubmnt  policy and practice was about housing and how money grubbing and entitled were the poor and down trodden. i was raised right, it just didnt "take" in the real world of contentious race and class politics.

We spent time,energy, and resources to battle HUD authorities for years in their stupid, even evil plans that pretty much worked to tear down the fabric of my community. The final straw in my conversion from caring liberal to --um, something else-- was when I attended yet anther bureaucratic meeting of HUD officials where they laid out their latest proposal for increased gubmnt housing in my area. There on their Power Point screen was a map of all vacant lots where gubmnt housng could go, including my iris and lily garden, my privately owned land. I felt a switch turn and I channelled some David Koresh as I envisioned my battle to the death with gooberment bureaucrats in taking my land, invading my block, to throw up their cheap ugly faux "Victorian" monstrosities and and populate them with people who do not share my values.

The feds may pry my garden out of my cold, dead hands, but not until I take some of them down with me.

This is no longer a threat,  but those fooking HUD asses kept us hopping for about a decade. They can go f,,k themselves.

And that is how I became a libertarian.




Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: a plan comes together on September 10, 2016, 08:45:55 AM
I didn't realize I was a libertarian until someone asked me what I would do with Aleppo.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: aspiringnomad on September 11, 2016, 12:16:13 AM
The USA functioned for ~160 years without the social insecurity system.  I assure you, there were not "scores of elderly dying in the streets" prior to 1935 (the start of the social insecurity system).

Maybe not, but they were dying somewhere if they were lucky enough to reach old age. Life expectancy in the US didn't reach 60 until the 30's.

I didn't realize I was a libertarian until someone asked me what I would do with Aleppo.

What's that?

Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: nobodyspecial on September 11, 2016, 12:27:39 PM
They would get rid of Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid.  For me that would be a horrible thing.  They would have scores of elderly literally dying in the streets.  No thanks!
No you wouldn't.
The streets would be owned by corporations and you would pay to only use the streets you need, no more taxes going to wasteful highway pork projects. If the homeless want to live on the streets they will need an EZPass on their shopping carts.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: nobodyspecial on September 11, 2016, 12:29:26 PM

I didn't realize I was a libertarian until someone asked me what I would do with Aleppo.

What's that?
It's the Marx brother that nobody talks about
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: LeRainDrop on September 18, 2016, 02:38:12 AM
This article discusses the origin of the term "libertarian": "Where Does the Term 'Libertarian' Come From Anyway?" (https://fee.org/articles/where-does-the-term-libertarian-come-from-anyway/)  In light of the comments early in this thread -- re, well I'm this libertarian but not that libertarian -- I thought this might be an interesting read for you all.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: MoonLiteNite on September 18, 2016, 03:31:24 AM
Got one here! Funny enough i was going to ask this question when i clicked on this sub-forum :D

100% have been for for NAP for the last 6 years of my life.
Took me 24 too many long years to figure out forcing people to behave like you want, and taking money from others at gun point is just wrong.

Now that i am 30, i even see it more when it comes to how much i have been robbed through SS and general taxes.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: MoonLiteNite on September 18, 2016, 03:37:29 AM
I'm libertarian.

The weird thing about libertarianism, and  I suspect third parties in general, is that somehow we have to 100% support the platform. In this thread there's people saying "I'd be libertarian but...."

Do any of those stipulations EVER get applied to the main parties? I doubt very many people actually adhere to such a stringent interpretation of either D or R parties.

I don't agree with the (L) party on everything, nor do I think we need to go all the way to some supposed libertarian ideal. But I do want/think we need libertarian influence on the current state of affairs. Slide the scale towards liberatarianism to counterbalance what I view as a very top heavy statist government at the moment.

I am republican... but i do not think the state should say what people put in their bodies.
I am democrat... but i do not think the state should say how i defend myself
I am libertarian... but muh roads!!!!!
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Cyaphas on September 18, 2016, 01:46:24 PM
This article discusses the origin of the term "libertarian": "Where Does the Term 'Libertarian' Come From Anyway?" (https://fee.org/articles/where-does-the-term-libertarian-come-from-anyway/)  In light of the comments early in this thread -- re, well I'm this libertarian but not that libertarian -- I thought this might be an interesting read for you all.

I always found it ironic that the very things liberals are pushing are extremely anti-freedom.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: bacchi on September 18, 2016, 03:52:17 PM
This article discusses the origin of the term "libertarian": "Where Does the Term 'Libertarian' Come From Anyway?" (https://fee.org/articles/where-does-the-term-libertarian-come-from-anyway/)  In light of the comments early in this thread -- re, well I'm this libertarian but not that libertarian -- I thought this might be an interesting read for you all.

I always found it ironic that the very things liberals are pushing are extremely anti-freedom.

Totally. Where's my free market in children?*


*Rothbard, The Ethics of Liberty
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Cyaphas on September 18, 2016, 04:32:18 PM

Totally. Where's my free market in children?*


*Rothbard, The Ethics of Liberty

You think you should be free to dictate to others how to live their lives even to the point of enslavement? I think you should seek professional help.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: bacchi on September 18, 2016, 04:55:06 PM

Totally. Where's my free market in children?*


*Rothbard, The Ethics of Liberty

You think you should be free to dictate to others how to live their lives even to the point of enslavement? I think you should seek professional help.

*woosh*
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Cyaphas on September 18, 2016, 05:19:20 PM

Totally. Where's my free market in children?*


*Rothbard, The Ethics of Liberty

You think you should be free to dictate to others how to live their lives even to the point of enslavement? I think you should seek professional help.

*woosh*

Are you the only one allowed to be sarcastic?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: bacchi on September 18, 2016, 05:36:50 PM

Totally. Where's my free market in children?*


*Rothbard, The Ethics of Liberty

You think you should be free to dictate to others how to live their lives even to the point of enslavement? I think you should seek professional help.

*woosh*

Are you the only one allowed to be sarcastic?

Ah, my apologies. Sarcasm is hard to detect on the internet.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: sol on September 18, 2016, 05:43:21 PM
Even if I believed in libertarian philosophy, I probably wouldn't publicly associate myself with a movement with such a long history of hatred and bigotry.

As a quick review for anyone born after 1970, the libertarianism movement was created by far-right republicans who thought Eisenhower and Nixon were too moderate, and then promptly adopted and promoted by scores of ugly racists like Murray Rothbard and H.L. Mencken and Lew Rockwell and David Duke (and eventually Ron Paul).

The libertarian argument for expanding personal freedoms is the exact same argument that said the US Civil War was fought because the South was trying to defend freedom.  Specifically, their freedom to own slaves (and they still don't see the irony there).  Libertarians don't really care about expanding personal freedoms, they care about removing the government's authority and ability to enforce freedom and equality for all US citizens. 

For example, libertarians don't think marijuana should be legal.  They think each city or state should be free to make their own laws about, up to and including immediate execution by firing squad for first time offenders.  Every time I hear a pot head say they want to vote libertarian because they think it will loosen drug laws, I remind them that federal drug sentencing guidelines, while far from perfect, do at least protect people in both directions.  Without them, things like Sharia Law are a real possibility. 

Yes, I just said that libertarians support Sharia Law.  Or at least the freedom for any state that wants it to have it.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Cyaphas on September 18, 2016, 05:48:24 PM
Even if I believed in libertarian philosophy, I probably wouldn't publicly associate myself with a movement with such a long history of hatred and bigotry.

As a quick review for anyone born after 1970, the libertarianism movement was created by far-right republicans who thought Eisenhower and Nixon were too moderate, and then promptly adopted and promoted by scores of ugly racists like Murray Rothbard and H.L. Mencken and Lew Rockwell and David Duke (and eventually Ron Paul).

The libertarian argument for expanding personal freedoms is the exact same argument that said the US Civil War was fought because the South was trying to defend freedom.  Specifically, their freedom to own slaves (and they still don't see the irony there).  Libertarians don't really care about expanding personal freedoms, they care about removing the government's authority and ability to enforce freedom and equality for all US citizens. 

For example, libertarians don't think marijuana should be legal.  They think each city or state should be free to make their own laws about, up to and including immediate execution by firing squad for first time offenders.  Every time I hear a pot head say they want to vote libertarian because they think it will loosen drug laws, I remind them that federal drug sentencing guidelines, while far from perfect, do at least protect people in both directions.  Without them, things like Sharia Law are a real possibility. 

Yes, I just said that libertarians support Sharia Law.  Or at least the freedom for any state that wants it to have it.

A lot of presumptions, elitism and non-factual statements with a good dose of belittlement. Oh look, it's Sol. Color me surpised.

MOD NOTE: Please stop with the personal attacks.  Cheers!
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: sol on September 18, 2016, 05:52:08 PM
A lot of presumptions, elitism and non-factual statements with a good dose of belittlement. Oh look, it's Sol. Color me surpised.

Rather than a personal attack, I was hoping you might offer specific rebuttals.  Can you clarify which sentence is nonfactual, for example?  I'm always open to learning something new. 

Everything I've ever learned about libertarianism has been sadly disappointing, which is why I was so surprised to see so many otherwise intelligent and respectable forum posters publicly declaring their adherence.

You, Cyaphas, are not included in that assessment.

MOD EDIT: Please stop with the personal attacks.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Spork on September 18, 2016, 05:57:22 PM
For example, libertarians don't think marijuana should be legal.  They think each city or state should be free to make their own laws about, up to and including immediate execution by firing squad for first time offenders.  Every time I hear a pot head say they want to vote libertarian because they think it will loosen drug laws, I remind them that federal drug sentencing guidelines, while far from perfect, do at least protect people in both directions.  Without them, things like Sharia Law are a real possibility. 

Yes, I just said that libertarians support Sharia Law.  Or at least the freedom for any state that wants it to have it.

Citation needed.  Lots of them needed.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Cyaphas on September 18, 2016, 06:07:50 PM
Even if I believed in libertarian philosophy, I probably wouldn't publicly associate myself with a movement with such a long history of hatred and bigotry.

I'm sure every other party has a squeaky clean record of upholding the constitution and not being for the most part corrupt?

As a quick review for anyone born after 1970, the libertarianism movement was created by far-right republicans who thought Eisenhower and Nixon were too moderate, and then promptly adopted and promoted by scores of ugly racists like Murray Rothbard and H.L. Mencken and Lew Rockwell and David Duke (and eventually Ron Paul).

Again, trying guilt by association. John Wayne Gacy was a democrat. Racism is bad. We know. I'm happy to announce racism has nothing to do with Libertarians. Full stop.   

The libertarian argument for expanding personal freedoms is the exact same argument that said the US Civil War was fought because the South was trying to defend freedom.  Specifically, their freedom to own slaves (and they still don't see the irony there).  Libertarians don't really care about expanding personal freedoms, they care about removing the government's authority and ability to enforce freedom and equality for all US citizens. 

I'm so glad you're here to tel us what we're trying to do and thinking. Thank god you're the expert on what goes on in our heads. Oh and... RACISM! Scarrry. Also, do some research on the Civil War. You write like you don't know what happened or you're trying to re-write history to your convenience.

For example, libertarians don't think marijuana should be legal.  They think each city or state should be free to make their own laws about, up to and including immediate execution by firing squad for first time offenders.  Every time I hear a pot head say they want to vote libertarian because they think it will loosen drug laws, I remind them that federal drug sentencing guidelines, while far from perfect, do at least protect people in both directions.  Without them, things like Sharia Law are a real possibility. 

Putting words in everyone's mouth... again. There's even a dose of 'public executions' in there for shock value. Even a sad attempt to associate Sharia law with Libertarianism. LOL!

Yes, I just said that libertarians support Sharia Law.  Or at least the freedom for any state that wants it to have it.

This gem says it all! Your attempted hit piece is nothing more than comedy. That you feel anyone would take you seriously after that statement proves just how much of a zealot, just how far out of touch, you are.



A lot of presumptions, elitism and non-factual statements with a good dose of belittlement. Oh look, it's Sol. Color me surpised.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: FINate on September 18, 2016, 06:47:52 PM
I've long considered myself libertarian (little L) because I tend to be socially liberal* and fiscally conservative** and therefore do not fit neatly into either of the main political parties. I suspect there are many divergent definitions for "libertarian" because it is primarily a catch-all for not quite Dem or Repub, so this can be a broad spectrum of ideals. I will not vote for Trump or Clinton, not sure if I will vote for Johnson - this may be the first presidential election where I don't vote for anyone.

* Although I'm very conservative in my personal life (protestant faith), I strongly believe government has no place in people's personal lives as long as no one is harming another, and government should not be legislating morality. So although I'm a "church goer", I'm strongly pro gay rights/gay marriage, support plural marriage (though I have no interest in it, just don't think it does any good to push it underground as long as it's between consenting adults), for legalization of pot (though not a user myself), and for legalization or at least decriminalization of other drugs. In short, when it comes to government I prioritize personal liberty above pretty much everything else.

** This does not mean I'm against government programs or taxes. There are certain functions that are best handled by a government, and taxes are absolutely necessary for society to function. My issue is the US Federal government is far too large and inefficient. I would much rather have programs and services provided at the state or, even better, the local level where there's more accountability to voters. At present responsibility is too diffuse, with too many layers of bureaucracy between what's happening on the ground and our elected representatives. Large centralized programs also create extremely high incentives for special interests to lobby in D.C. - I would rather make special interests lobby individually in each state. And while I'm not against taxes, I know every tax has a cost and distorts the market to some degree. My preference would be for the government to focus on how best to balance maximizing revenue while promoting economic growth, yet the Dems seem hell bent on making people "pay their fair share" whereas the Repubs are only focused on "starving the beast" :(
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: sol on September 18, 2016, 06:48:19 PM
Citation needed.  Lots of them needed.

That's fair.  I'm making dinner and then have some chores to do, but I'll see if I can't get back to you later tonight.

I'm sure every other party has a squeaky clean record of upholding the constitution and not being for the most part corrupt?

Definitely not.  Democrats used to be the party of Jim Crow, after all.  But libertarians, more so than other the other parties, have a well documented history of voluminous writings by the movement's founders and original thinkers.  Just because it's so much more recent.  Some of those thinkers very strongly argued that the the U.S. government had no place invading a sovereign nation (the South) to infringe the freedoms of white southerners who only wanted to preserve their individual rights to infringe the freedoms of black southerners.

Quote

Again, trying guilt by association. John Wayne Gacy was a democrat. Racism is bad. We know. I'm happy to announce racism has nothing to do with Libertarians. Full stop. 
 

Nothing at all?  Really?  Have you read any of those issues of Reason (https://reason.com/) from the 1970s and 80s, like the ones where they defended Apartheid in South Africa, or promoted Holocaust denialism and revisionist history?  You don't see any racism there (https://pando.com/2014/07/18/homophobia-racism-and-the-kochs-san-franciscos-tech-libertarian-reboot-conference-is-a-cesspool/)?

And this isn't guilt by association because some bad people were libertarians.  This is guilt because the movement's founding fathers actively defended some bad people, like David Duke in 1992 (http://www.unz.org/Pub/RothbardRockwellReport-1992jan-00005).

Quote

You write like you don't know what happened or you're trying to re-write history to your convenience.


Wow, I'm the one who is supposedly rewriting history?  Did you see that link above about Reason magazine promoting revisionist history regarding WWII and the holocaust?  That's some classic Donald Trump style ninjutsu right there, accusing me of the very thing you're most guilty of.

Quote

That you feel anyone would take you seriously after that statement proves just how much of a zealot, just how far out of touch, you are.


I don't feel like a zealot.  I feel like a centrist democrat who appreciates the progress we've made over the past 8 years, is still uncomfortable with how readily liberals have seemingly adopted 90s neocon foreign policy, and recognizes that truly free markets have always been disastrously inefficient. 

I like healthcare being available to more Americans.  I like women to have access to birth control through their employer insurance.  I recognize the success of the recent economic stimulus packages, and support the federal reserve's policies because they have been proven to work.  I support current (and even higher) corporate tax rates on huge megacorps.  I think the country is moving (slowly) in the right direction by liberalizing drug policy.  I support public schools, and I think the government has a vital role to play in curbing carbon emissions.  I support restricting gun ownership options for felons, criminals, and terrorists.  I like the social security program and I support paying for it with taxes.

Gary Johnson opposes everything in the preceding paragraph (http://www.ontheissues.org/Gary_Johnson.htm).  If you agree with me on any of those points, then you disagree with the Libertarian candidate.

To be fair, there are also some issues on which I agree with him.  Just not nearly as many as there are for more traditional candidates.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: badbear on September 18, 2016, 07:46:45 PM
Nothing at all?  Really?  Have you read any of those issues of Reason (https://reason.com/) from the 1970s and 80s, like the ones where they defended Apartheid in South Africa, or promoted Holocaust denialism and revisionist history?  You don't see any racism there (https://pando.com/2014/07/18/homophobia-racism-and-the-kochs-san-franciscos-tech-libertarian-reboot-conference-is-a-cesspool/)?
Reason did not defend Apartheid, it opposed it vehemently. I'll let them explain this hit piece.
http://reason.com/blog/2016/09/02/washington-post-contributor-falsely-accu (http://reason.com/blog/2016/09/02/washington-post-contributor-falsely-accu)
http://reason.com/blog/2016/09/06/washington-post-and-matthew-sheffield-di (http://reason.com/blog/2016/09/06/washington-post-and-matthew-sheffield-di)

Wow, I'm the one who is supposedly rewriting history?  Did you see that link above about Reason magazine promoting revisionist history regarding WWII and the holocaust?  That's some classic Donald Trump style ninjutsu right there, accusing me of the very thing you're most guilty of.
The above links also address this "revisionism", which was really just examining ways in which some people try to revise history, not supporting it.

I don't feel like a zealot.  I feel like a centrist democrat who appreciates the progress we've made over the past 8 years, is still uncomfortable with how readily liberals have seemingly adopted 90s neocon foreign policy, and recognizes that truly free markets have always been disastrously inefficient. 

I like healthcare being available to more Americans.  I like women to have access to birth control through their employer insurance.
Libertarians, including Gary Johnson, almost universally oppose interventionist neocon foreign policy. I think most libertarians would agree that birth control should be available over the counter. Can you cite any evidence for truly free markets being inefficient? You're fighting against some pretty well-established economics here.

I recognize the success of the recent economic stimulus packages, and support the federal reserve's policies because they have been proven to work.  I support current (and even higher) corporate tax rates on huge megacorps.
We already have the highest corporate tax rate in the world, it's just that there are so many loopholes written into the tax law that it gives unfair advantage to large corporations and screws over small ones. The big companies lobbied for this, but wouldn't we all be better off if the corporate tax rate were lower and the loopholes and special tax breaks were eliminated?

I think the country is moving (slowly) in the right direction by liberalizing drug policy.
Gary Johnson supports marijuana legalization and drug decriminalization.

I support public schools, and I think the government has a vital role to play in curbing carbon emissions.
Gary Johnson supports school choice, not necessarily the elimination of public schools. Education is largely decided on the state and local level already--let them decide how to educate their children.
Gary Johnson also has recently expressed being open to a carbon tax, which many libertarians have not be enthused about.

I support restricting gun ownership options for felons, criminals, and terrorists.
From the site you linked to below, Gary Johnson: "Keep guns away from mentally ill & potential terrorists. (Jun 2016)".

I like the social security program and I support paying for it with taxes.
Gary Johnson has not said he would eliminate social security, but has said we need to consider raising the full retirement age to keep the program solvent. He has also said we may want to transition to some sort of system using personal accounts, which I would support.

Gary Johnson opposes everything in the preceding paragraph (http://www.ontheissues.org/Gary_Johnson.htm).  If you agree with me on any of those points, then you disagree with the Libertarian candidate.
This simply isn't true, as I've pointed out above.

To be fair, there are also some issues on which I agree with him.  Just not nearly as many as there are for more traditional candidates.
That's fine, but please don't misrepresent what his positions are.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on September 18, 2016, 09:17:39 PM
MOD NOTE: Warnings issued, bans will be next.  Please discuss the issues without attacking the other posters.  If you can't, avoid the thread. 

Thanks badbear for getting us back on track with discussion and citations without rudeness.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on September 20, 2016, 07:07:42 AM
I don't feel like a zealot.  I feel like a centrist democrat who appreciates the progress we've made over the past 8 years, is still uncomfortable with how readily liberals have seemingly adopted 90s neocon foreign policy, and recognizes that truly free markets have always been disastrously inefficient. 

I like healthcare being available to more Americans.  I like women to have access to birth control through their employer insurance.
Libertarians, including Gary Johnson, almost universally oppose interventionist neocon foreign policy. I think most libertarians would agree that birth control should be available over the counter. Can you cite any evidence for truly free markets being inefficient? You're fighting against some pretty well-established economics here.

Free markets are proven to work really well under certain limits and in certain circumstances.  I'm not sure that truly free markets have ever existed in history though.  There have always been restrictions in place to govern where any market is allowed to be free, and for good reason.  Total freedom is an anything goes anarchy.

For example, if selling slaves is banned you don't have a free market.  A totally free market would allow for the purchase of children, would allow the poor to sell their organs to the rich (you don't really need both lungs . . . or kidneys).  It's kinda hard to defend a truly free market.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: deadlymonkey on September 20, 2016, 07:49:53 AM
I don't feel like a zealot.  I feel like a centrist democrat who appreciates the progress we've made over the past 8 years, is still uncomfortable with how readily liberals have seemingly adopted 90s neocon foreign policy, and recognizes that truly free markets have always been disastrously inefficient. 

I like healthcare being available to more Americans.  I like women to have access to birth control through their employer insurance.
Libertarians, including Gary Johnson, almost universally oppose interventionist neocon foreign policy. I think most libertarians would agree that birth control should be available over the counter. Can you cite any evidence for truly free markets being inefficient? You're fighting against some pretty well-established economics here.

Free markets are proven to work really well under certain limits and in certain circumstances.  I'm not sure that truly free markets have ever existed in history though.  There have always been restrictions in place to govern where any market is allowed to be free, and for good reason.  Total freedom is an anything goes anarchy.

For example, if selling slaves is banned you don't have a free market.  A totally free market would allow for the purchase of children, would allow the poor to sell their organs to the rich (you don't really need both lungs . . . or kidneys).  It's kinda hard to defend a truly free market.

All true, but a little extreme in the example.  A free market will always trend to extremes.  Adam Smith, the founder of capitalism and free market ideas embraced regulation because he saw what relatively unrestrained free markets were capable of (East India company absues).
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Libertea on September 20, 2016, 08:03:30 AM
Free markets are proven to work really well under certain limits and in certain circumstances.  I'm not sure that truly free markets have ever existed in history though.  There have always been restrictions in place to govern where any market is allowed to be free, and for good reason.  Total freedom is an anything goes anarchy.

For example, if selling slaves is banned you don't have a free market.  A totally free market would allow for the purchase of children, would allow the poor to sell their organs to the rich (you don't really need both lungs . . . or kidneys).  It's kinda hard to defend a truly free market.
Only if you are assuming that a "free market" is the underlying freedom that supersedes all others.  However, in the hierarchy of libertarian values, a free market is NOT the most essential value.  Rather, the right of each individual to their life and liberty (i.e., self-determination) is the axiomatic principle for libertarianism.  Anything else that interferes with that most basic, primary right must be banned (by the state, and by force, if necessary).  Thus, I cannot choose to own or sell a human slave (whether a child or an adult) under a libertarian regime, because by doing so, it would violate that person's right to their life and liberty.  I cannot choose to sell one of your organs without your permission for the same reason, as it would require me to first assault you.  You, on the other hand, COULD conceivably choose to sell your organs yourself (or via an "organ broker") in a certain libertarian scenario, which is a completely different question, since it gets into the debate of whether someone who chooses to sell an organ is truly doing so without external coercion.

Regarding sol's argument about a libertarian position on marijuana being legal, I disagree that most libertarians would find a local government oppressing its citizens' right to self-determination much more palatable than they find the federal government doing it.  Put simply, if you accept the idea that consenting adults should be able to do what they wish with their own bodies as the most primary of principles, then the logical conclusion is that the government should have no position at all regarding the sale or use of marijuana, except where its sale/use interferes with the rights of others to life and liberty.  So yes, using marijuana would be legal under any libertarian government.  HOWEVER, there is a caveat.  It is well-established, for example, that marijuana use slows reaction times and impairs judgment.  Therefore, it is perfectly legitimate for the government to ban driving under the influence, and to arrest/imprison those who violate the rights of others by getting behind the wheel while impaired.  Your right to toke up stops at the point where it becomes a threat to the life and liberty of others.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Jack on September 20, 2016, 08:43:49 AM
Can you clarify which sentence is nonfactual, for example?  I'm always open to learning something new. 

What's nonfactual is the emotional appeal demonizing States' Rights using an example (slavery) that should have been irrelevant. Slavery was wrong because it violated the basic human rights of the enslaved, not because it violated the Federal government's "right" to dictate policy to the States. Ditto with the bullshit about marijuana and Sharia law.

Federalism (and by that I mean the separation of powers between Federal, state and local governments) is a good thing, and using slavery as a wedge issue to drive the stampede towards central planning and authoritarianism is a special kind of evil. (Not as evil as slavery itself was, of course... but still evil.)

The North had the right to invade the South over slavery in the 1860s in exactly the same way the UN has the right to invade some third-world country over slavery today: to protect human rights. That does not imply that the UN has some kind of right to dictate (for example) trade policy to that third-world country, in the same way that the Federal government should not have the right to dictate (for example) education policy to the states, except for things like Brown v. Board of Education and Title IX that protect the rights of the students.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on September 20, 2016, 08:44:36 AM
Free markets are proven to work really well under certain limits and in certain circumstances.  I'm not sure that truly free markets have ever existed in history though.  There have always been restrictions in place to govern where any market is allowed to be free, and for good reason.  Total freedom is an anything goes anarchy.

For example, if selling slaves is banned you don't have a free market.  A totally free market would allow for the purchase of children, would allow the poor to sell their organs to the rich (you don't really need both lungs . . . or kidneys).  It's kinda hard to defend a truly free market.
Only if you are assuming that a "free market" is the underlying freedom that supersedes all others.  However, in the hierarchy of libertarian values, a free market is NOT the most essential value.  Rather, the right of each individual to their life and liberty (i.e., self-determination) is the axiomatic principle for libertarianism.  Anything else that interferes with that most basic, primary right must be banned (by the state, and by force, if necessary).  Thus, I cannot choose to own or sell a human slave (whether a child or an adult) under a libertarian regime, because by doing so, it would violate that person's right to their life and liberty.

Exactly!  What you're arguing for then is not a true free market, but a limited market - limited by what you feel are reasonable guidelines.  A true free market is a terrible and dangerous thing.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: nobodyspecial on September 20, 2016, 09:47:55 PM
in the same way that the Federal government should not have the right to dictate (for example) education policy to the states, except for things like Brown v. Board of Education and Title IX that protect the rights of the students.
If you get rid of the federal education department (possibly a good idea whatever your politics) why push it to the state level?

A state like California is the size of most countries, if I live in N California why does it make more sense for the curriculum to be decided in Sacremento rather than Washington?
Devolve power to individual schools, then if I want to believe in evolution there is a school in town that teaches it - rather than me having to move to a evolution-ist state. 
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Jack on September 21, 2016, 07:55:49 AM
If you get rid of the federal education department (possibly a good idea whatever your politics) why push it to the state level?

A state like California is the size of most countries, if I live in N California why does it make more sense for the curriculum to be decided in Sacremento rather than Washington?
Devolve power to individual schools, then if I want to believe in evolution there is a school in town that teaches it - rather than me having to move to a evolution-ist state.

Simple: because once it's at the state level -- in some other state -- then it's no longer my business. Maybe devolving it further is a good idea, but at that point it becomes solely the Californians' decision.

In Georgia, on the other hand, sure -- devolve it to the state or city level. And then in Atlanta, sure -- devolve it to the individual school level. But I should have a say on that only because I live in Atlanta.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on September 21, 2016, 08:17:51 AM
If you get rid of the federal education department (possibly a good idea whatever your politics) why push it to the state level?

A state like California is the size of most countries, if I live in N California why does it make more sense for the curriculum to be decided in Sacremento rather than Washington?
Devolve power to individual schools, then if I want to believe in evolution there is a school in town that teaches it - rather than me having to move to a evolution-ist state.

Simple: because once it's at the state level -- in some other state -- then it's no longer my business. Maybe devolving it further is a good idea, but at that point it becomes solely the Californians' decision.

In Georgia, on the other hand, sure -- devolve it to the state or city level. And then in Atlanta, sure -- devolve it to the individual school level. But I should have a say on that only because I live in Atlanta.

If all schools are run to completely different standards, it stands to reason that there will be wildly different educational outcomes from different schools (significantly more varying than those existing today).  What do you tell the parents of children who have gone through say, Atlanta's school system when it turns out that no university or college will accept them because the school they come from doesn't meet the standards the institution expects?

Even if the Atlanta schools immediately start to adapt to fix their programs, you'll still have generations of people with a useless education.  That seems like a serious concern.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: nobodyspecial on September 21, 2016, 08:25:00 AM
There already are wildly different educational outcomes - having a federal body demanding that at 9:00am all students will simultaneously be on page 97 of a standard textbook (effectively what the British national curriculum was aiming for) doesn't change that.

I don't think having California school standards decided in Sacremento means that every child in Ca is automatically equally prepared for Caltech or Stanford while a kid in Oregon isn't.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on September 21, 2016, 08:28:31 AM
There already are wildly different educational outcomes - having a federal body demanding that at 9:00am all students will simultaneously be on page 97 of a standard textbook (effectively what the British national curriculum was aiming for) doesn't change that.

I don't think having California school standards decided in Sacremento means that every child in Ca is automatically equally prepared for Caltech or Stanford while a kid in Oregon isn't.

While I'd agree that there's a lot of room for improvement currently . . . by having hundreds of competing standards you will only increase the difference in educational outcomes.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Jack on September 21, 2016, 09:37:46 AM
If all schools are run to completely different standards, it stands to reason that there will be wildly different educational outcomes from different schools (significantly more varying than those existing today).  What do you tell the parents of children who have gone through say, Atlanta's school system when it turns out that no university or college will accept them because the school they come from doesn't meet the standards the institution expects?

Even if the Atlanta schools immediately start to adapt to fix their programs, you'll still have generations of people with a useless education.  That seems like a serious concern.

Which is worse: having outcomes that are not uniform, or having outcomes that are uniformly mediocre while simultaneously infringing everyone's freedom in order to achieve that mediocrity?

Remember: national standards mean that not only do atheist hippies in California get a say in what students in Texas are taught, bible-thumping rednecks in Texas get a say in what students in California are taught too.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on September 21, 2016, 10:05:42 AM
Which is worse: having outcomes that are not uniform, or having outcomes that are uniformly mediocre while simultaneously infringing everyone's freedom in order to achieve that mediocrity?

I guess that depends on which school your children go to.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: nobodyspecial on September 21, 2016, 10:16:52 AM
I think my objection to the states having control was that it was more political.
The only advantage of a federal government department is inertia - it stops state A from banning teaching evolution while also stopping state B offering Mandarin immersion business classes.

Which is why if you are going to devolve power it needs to be to the point where the parents have an actual choice to send their kids to school A where they can sing hymns all day or school B where they only study math - the only way to do this (without a national system of school bus hyperloops = my other plan)  is to devolve curriculum to schools.

Doesn't the US already do this with high schools for performing arts, or technology high schools?
 
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Pooplips on September 21, 2016, 11:38:51 AM
I guess I'd have to say I'm a libertarian, although I don't really have any interest in ideological purity; I just want a few of the really important things done. I'd vote for Hillary Clinton if I thought she could and would clean up the mess caused by NHA 1934/FHA. I'd be perhaps even more inclined to vote for someone who acknowledged that our current infrastructure needs the $2 trillion that ASCE says over the next decade, but whose solution is to shrink our infrastructure to a level that makes sense.

Having said that, it really seems weird to me when people say they want small government at every level. I want powerful local governments; I just don't want all the federal and state programs that encourage towns to do really stupid things.

Have you ever heard of Strong Towns? Or read them by chance?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: nobodyspecial on September 21, 2016, 11:54:15 AM
EconTalk podcast with the author

http://www.econtalk.org/archives/2014/05/charles_marohn.html
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Jrr85 on September 21, 2016, 01:33:31 PM
Free markets are proven to work really well under certain limits and in certain circumstances.  I'm not sure that truly free markets have ever existed in history though.  There have always been restrictions in place to govern where any market is allowed to be free, and for good reason.  Total freedom is an anything goes anarchy.

For example, if selling slaves is banned you don't have a free market.  A totally free market would allow for the purchase of children, would allow the poor to sell their organs to the rich (you don't really need both lungs . . . or kidneys).  It's kinda hard to defend a truly free market.
Only if you are assuming that a "free market" is the underlying freedom that supersedes all others.  However, in the hierarchy of libertarian values, a free market is NOT the most essential value.  Rather, the right of each individual to their life and liberty (i.e., self-determination) is the axiomatic principle for libertarianism.  Anything else that interferes with that most basic, primary right must be banned (by the state, and by force, if necessary).  Thus, I cannot choose to own or sell a human slave (whether a child or an adult) under a libertarian regime, because by doing so, it would violate that person's right to their life and liberty.

Exactly!  What you're arguing for then is not a true free market, but a limited market - limited by what you feel are reasonable guidelines.  A true free market is a terrible and dangerous thing.

Free market does not mean anarchsim or that there are no enforceable contracts.  I can see how somebody without access to a library or the internet, if forced to make a guess as to what free market means might guess that it means no rules or something like a commercial equivalent of a "free for all".  But I really don't get why somebody would go with that guess when it would literally take less than a minute, even with a bad internet connection, to figure out that's not what it means. 
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on September 21, 2016, 02:00:17 PM
Free markets are proven to work really well under certain limits and in certain circumstances.  I'm not sure that truly free markets have ever existed in history though.  There have always been restrictions in place to govern where any market is allowed to be free, and for good reason.  Total freedom is an anything goes anarchy.

For example, if selling slaves is banned you don't have a free market.  A totally free market would allow for the purchase of children, would allow the poor to sell their organs to the rich (you don't really need both lungs . . . or kidneys).  It's kinda hard to defend a truly free market.
Only if you are assuming that a "free market" is the underlying freedom that supersedes all others.  However, in the hierarchy of libertarian values, a free market is NOT the most essential value.  Rather, the right of each individual to their life and liberty (i.e., self-determination) is the axiomatic principle for libertarianism.  Anything else that interferes with that most basic, primary right must be banned (by the state, and by force, if necessary).  Thus, I cannot choose to own or sell a human slave (whether a child or an adult) under a libertarian regime, because by doing so, it would violate that person's right to their life and liberty.

Exactly!  What you're arguing for then is not a true free market, but a limited market - limited by what you feel are reasonable guidelines.  A true free market is a terrible and dangerous thing.

Free market does not mean anarchsim or that there are no enforceable contracts.  I can see how somebody without access to a library or the internet, if forced to make a guess as to what free market means might guess that it means no rules or something like a commercial equivalent of a "free for all".  But I really don't get why somebody would go with that guess when it would literally take less than a minute, even with a bad internet connection, to figure out that's not what it means.


Please re-read my post.  I didn't say that contracts are unenforceable in a free market, you've made a mistake.

free mar·ket:
    an economic system in which prices are determined by unrestricted competition between privately owned businesses.

Unrestricted is the important word in the definition.  If you've restricted the selling of slaves, you no longer have a free market - by definition.  You've restricted the markets.

an·ar·chy:
    a state of disorder due to absence or nonrecognition of authority

When I said 'total freedom is an anything goes anarchy' I was speaking about the moral state of such a system.  That's why I gave several examples of the practices that a free market allows that are morally repugnant.  I suspect that the moral failings inherent to free markets are a large part of the reason that they are never implemented in the real world.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: cheapass on September 21, 2016, 03:19:23 PM
Another Libertarian checking in here.

I want government out of my wallet, out of my bedroom, and out of my gun safe.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: cheapass on September 21, 2016, 03:21:23 PM
Now that i am 30, i even see it more when it comes to how much i have been robbed through SS and general taxes.

Just think about how many extra years you'll end up working to pay your bullshit taxes... $38 billion pledged to Israel. Pentagon misplaced $6.5 trillion. etc.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Jrr85 on September 21, 2016, 03:50:08 PM
Free markets are proven to work really well under certain limits and in certain circumstances.  I'm not sure that truly free markets have ever existed in history though.  There have always been restrictions in place to govern where any market is allowed to be free, and for good reason.  Total freedom is an anything goes anarchy.

For example, if selling slaves is banned you don't have a free market.  A totally free market would allow for the purchase of children, would allow the poor to sell their organs to the rich (you don't really need both lungs . . . or kidneys).  It's kinda hard to defend a truly free market.
Only if you are assuming that a "free market" is the underlying freedom that supersedes all others.  However, in the hierarchy of libertarian values, a free market is NOT the most essential value.  Rather, the right of each individual to their life and liberty (i.e., self-determination) is the axiomatic principle for libertarianism.  Anything else that interferes with that most basic, primary right must be banned (by the state, and by force, if necessary).  Thus, I cannot choose to own or sell a human slave (whether a child or an adult) under a libertarian regime, because by doing so, it would violate that person's right to their life and liberty.

Exactly!  What you're arguing for then is not a true free market, but a limited market - limited by what you feel are reasonable guidelines.  A true free market is a terrible and dangerous thing.

Free market does not mean anarchsim or that there are no enforceable contracts.  I can see how somebody without access to a library or the internet, if forced to make a guess as to what free market means might guess that it means no rules or something like a commercial equivalent of a "free for all".  But I really don't get why somebody would go with that guess when it would literally take less than a minute, even with a bad internet connection, to figure out that's not what it means.


Please re-read my post.  I didn't say that contracts are unenforceable in a free market, you've made a mistake.

free mar·ket:
    an economic system in which prices are determined by unrestricted competition between privately owned businesses.

Unrestricted is the important word in the definition.  If you've restricted the selling of slaves, you no longer have a free market - by definition.  You've restricted the markets.

an·ar·chy:
    a state of disorder due to absence or nonrecognition of authority

When I said 'total freedom is an anything goes anarchy' I was speaking about the moral state of such a system.  That's why I gave several examples of the practices that a free market allows that are morally repugnant.  I suspect that the moral failings inherent to free markets are a large part of the reason that they are never implemented in the real world.

That doesn't really change anything.  Unrestricted does not mean there is no criminal code.  You go kidnap 7 year old kids out of their back yard and sell them into slavery, no Free market proponent is going to say "gee, slavery is an abomination, but they did enter into a market transaction for the slaves."  If there is somebody advocating for slavery, it's not because they are free market, it's because their conscience is so malformed that they don't understand why slavery is immoral or they just don't care. 
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on September 21, 2016, 04:27:09 PM
I can see how somebody without access to a library or the internet, if forced to make a guess as to what happened in the slave trade might guess that it didn't involve market transactions or abduction of people.  I really don't get why somebody would go with that guess when it would literally take less than a minute, even with a bad internet connection, to figure out that's exactly actually happened.

If a free market proponent is against slavery, they are for restrictions on the free market.  As we just covered, that would mean it's no longer a free market.  Most "free market" proponents just quibble about which restrictions to place, not the obvious need for restrictions on the market.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: nobodyspecial on September 21, 2016, 04:39:49 PM
I can see how somebody without access to a library or the internet, if forced to make a guess as to what happened in the slave trade might guess that it didn't involve market transactions or abduction of people. 
In the C17/C18, 50% of the white immigrants to the North American colonies were indentured servants. Only a small minority of these were forced.

Until the C18 the majority of european tradesmen would have served an indentured apprenticeship.
 
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on September 21, 2016, 06:02:46 PM
I can see how somebody without access to a library or the internet, if forced to make a guess as to what happened in the slave trade might guess that it didn't involve market transactions or abduction of people. 
In the C17/C18, 50% of the white immigrants to the North American colonies were indentured servants. Only a small minority of these were forced.

Until the C18 the majority of european tradesmen would have served an indentured apprenticeship.

And what about the non-white ones?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: nobodyspecial on September 21, 2016, 08:21:10 PM
I can see how somebody without access to a library or the internet, if forced to make a guess as to what happened in the slave trade might guess that it didn't involve market transactions or abduction of people. 
In the C17/C18, 50% of the white immigrants to the North American colonies were indentured servants. Only a small minority of these were forced.

Until the C18 the majority of european tradesmen would have served an indentured apprenticeship.

And what about the non-white ones?
More market than free !

Just pointing out that historically slavery has been a free market activity that both parties entered into willingly - at least for limited values of slavery
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on September 21, 2016, 08:54:42 PM
I can see how somebody without access to a library or the internet, if forced to make a guess as to what happened in the slave trade might guess that it didn't involve market transactions or abduction of people. 
In the C17/C18, 50% of the white immigrants to the North American colonies were indentured servants. Only a small minority of these were forced.

Until the C18 the majority of european tradesmen would have served an indentured apprenticeship.

And what about the non-white ones?
More market than free !

Just pointing out that historically slavery has been a free market activity that both parties entered into willingly - at least for limited values of slavery

Indentured servitude (which we can debate how "willingly" people participate) is not the same as slavery.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: badbear on September 21, 2016, 09:36:37 PM
Why are we entertaining a straw-man argument that real free market supporters support slavery? This isn't true for libertarians or any other modern free-market advocates.

All a free market means is that the prices are set by supply and demand, and absent of price fixing, monopolies, and artificial barriers to entry into the market (all things that government tends to put in place). You can have free markets AND laws against slavery or anything else that harms others or infringes on their rights. In this case you simply don't have a legal market in owning people. This may create a black market for owning people, but if the society as a whole considers it morally reprehensible to own people, and there are serious punishments for doing so, then this market will be small to nonexistent. Isn't it great that we have a market for labor instead!? A free market doesn't mean we don't have laws!

As it turns out a free market is a really good way to exchange goods and services in the most efficient way that we've figured out so far. It's a shame that government meddles in the markets so much, making markets less efficient, less competitive, and products more expensive. Or worse, they try to pick winners and losers in the market, and in doing so flush a bunch of your tax dollars down the toilet (or into their buddy's pockets).
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Jrr85 on September 21, 2016, 09:46:24 PM
I can see how somebody without access to a library or the internet, if forced to make a guess as to what happened in the slave trade might guess that it didn't involve market transactions or abduction of people.  I really don't get why somebody would go with that guess when it would literally take less than a minute, even with a bad internet connection, to figure out that's exactly actually happened.

If a free market proponent is against slavery, they are for restrictions on the free market.  As we just covered, that would mean it's no longer a free market.  Most "free market" proponents just quibble about which restrictions to place, not the obvious need for restrictions on the market.
You seem to be incapable of imaging that free market can mean something other than your assumption as to what 'free' means as a modifier to 'market'. Free market does not mean that you are  against a restriction against threatening people at gunpoint.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on September 21, 2016, 09:51:12 PM
Why are we entertaining a straw-man argument that real free market supporters support slavery? This isn't true for libertarians or any other modern free-market advocates.

I don't think GuitarStv is trying to make up a strawman, rather I think that he disagrees with this:
Quote
You can have free markets AND laws against slavery or anything else that harms others or infringes on their rights.

Once you put restrictions on what is/isn't allowed, it's no longer completely a free market.

If you are against slavery (as all libertarians should be, since the freedom/autonomy of an individual is primary), then you are for a restricted market, not a completely free market.  As he said:
Quote
If a free market proponent is against slavery, they are for restrictions on the free market.  As we just covered, that would mean it's no longer a free market.  Most "free market" proponents just quibble about which restrictions to place, not the obvious need for restrictions on the market.

And once you admit that it's no longer a completely free market (which would be anarchy), then we're just haggling over how restricted (not free) we want the market to be.

See classic quote/joke most commonly attributed to Winston Churchill (Google churchill haggling if you're not familiar with it).
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on September 21, 2016, 09:52:47 PM
I can see how somebody without access to a library or the internet, if forced to make a guess as to what happened in the slave trade might guess that it didn't involve market transactions or abduction of people.  I really don't get why somebody would go with that guess when it would literally take less than a minute, even with a bad internet connection, to figure out that's exactly actually happened.

If a free market proponent is against slavery, they are for restrictions on the free market.  As we just covered, that would mean it's no longer a free market.  Most "free market" proponents just quibble about which restrictions to place, not the obvious need for restrictions on the market.
You seem to be incapable of imaging that free market can mean something other than your assumption as to what 'free' means as a modifier to 'market'. Free market does not mean that you are  against a restriction against threatening people at gunpoint.

It really actually does.  That's what a totally free market would be--anything goes, anarchy.

That's the definition of free: no restrictions.  If you make a law that I can't take your goods by giving you one penny and waiving a gun at you, the market is no longer completely free.

We put restrictions onto ALL markets.  For good reason.  There is no golden "free market" that exists, or has ever existed.  Just ones with various levels of restrictions.

Free-er markets are what we'd like, but no one wants a completely free market (anarchists aside, perhaps).
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Jrr85 on September 21, 2016, 09:59:43 PM
I can see how somebody without access to a library or the internet, if forced to make a guess as to what happened in the slave trade might guess that it didn't involve market transactions or abduction of people.  I really don't get why somebody would go with that guess when it would literally take less than a minute, even with a bad internet connection, to figure out that's exactly actually happened.

If a free market proponent is against slavery, they are for restrictions on the free market.  As we just covered, that would mean it's no longer a free market.  Most "free market" proponents just quibble about which restrictions to place, not the obvious need for restrictions on the market.
You seem to be incapable of imaging that free market can mean something other than your assumption as to what 'free' means as a modifier to 'market'. Free market does not mean that you are  against a restriction against threatening people at gunpoint.

It really actually does.  That's what a totally free market would be--anything goes, anarchy.

That's the definition of free: no restrictions.  If you make a law that I can't take your goods by giving you one penny and waiving a gun at you, the market is no longer completely free.

We put restrictions onto ALL markets.  For good reason.  There is no golden "free market" that exists, or has ever existed.  Just ones with various levels of restrictions.

Free-er markets are what we'd like, but no one wants a completely free market (anarchists aside, perhaps).
No. It doesn't. Sometimes phrases mean something beyond the combination of the dictionary definitions of the words in the phrase. Free market does not mean murder for hire is ok. That's pretty much never been the definition intended by anyone that's used the phrase other then people trying to establish a straw an to attack.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: badbear on September 21, 2016, 10:17:59 PM
Well said, Jrr85.

There are a lot of different definitions of a free market. For example, Adam Smith argued that completely unrestricted markets were prone to the development of monopolies and so were not "free" in that sense. This one where free markets = anarchy seems pretty unusual and is definitely not the typical libertarian/classical liberal definition.

To me one of the fundamental parts of exchange in a free market is that prices are arrived at willingly by the market participants based on what they believe the good or service is worth. If it's arrived at by threat or coercion, like in your example Arebelspy, well, that's theft. Essentially all modern societies have made that illegal (barring some things like civil asset forfeiture), but that doesn't necessarily mean that those societies don't have free markets. At least not by any reasonable definition of free market I have ever heard outside of this thread.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: sol on September 21, 2016, 10:37:19 PM
All of your rights are necessarily abridged, even the so-called fundamental ones.  This is the nature of human civilization. 

You do not have any absolute rights, if you live as part of human society.  Sorry.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on September 22, 2016, 06:15:47 AM
Sometimes phrases mean something beyond the combination of the dictionary definitions of the words in the phrase. Free market does not mean murder for hire is ok. That's pretty much never been the definition intended by anyone that's used the phrase other then people trying to establish a straw an to attack.

I absolutely agree that sometimes phrases mean something beyond the combination of dictionary definitions of the words of the phrase.  I've noticed that it's not uncommon for a large number of people to incorrectly use a phrase.  That's why I've already provided a dictionary definition of the whole phrase 'Free Market' so there can be no confusion.  I can even provide a few more if you would like:

Free Market - an economic system in which prices and wages are determined by unrestricted competition between businesses, without government regulation or fear of monopolies. (http://www.dictionary.com/browse/free-market?s=t (http://www.dictionary.com/browse/free-market?s=t))

Restricting slavery is restricting competition in the market place.


Free Market - an economy operating by free competition  (http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/free%20market (http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/free%20market))

Restricting slavery means that there is no free competition when selling slaves.


Free Market - an economic system with only a small amount of government control, in which prices and earnings are decided by the level of demand for, and production of goods and services (http://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/free-market (http://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/free-market))

There is demand for slaves (see: the many places around the world where people are still commonly used as slaves - North Korea, Qatar, India, etc.) and production of slaves is available.  Most governments exert a huge amount of control over this area of the market to prevent any slavery transactions from taking place though.  Certainly not a free market.


Free Market - An economic system in which prices are determined by unrestricted competition between privately owned businesses.  (https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/free_market (https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/free_market))

Restricting the sale of slaves restricts competition in the market.



If you check closely, not a single definition of the phrase 'Free Market' prohibits selling people into slavery.  It is inconsistent to yell 'Free Market GOOD' and then argue for limiting slave trade by the government and against limiting the sale of say handguns by the government.  In both cases a 'Free Market' is being denied to the people.  You appear to want a limited market, limited to things that you personally feel should be allowed.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: ShoulderThingThatGoesUp on September 22, 2016, 06:24:33 AM
I am, but I'm no longer interested in debating it much on the Internet, because it devolves into ridiculous arguments like this one. I'll debate individual policies but not philosophy.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Libertea on September 22, 2016, 06:31:37 AM
I am, but I'm no longer interested in debating it much on the Internet, because it devolves into ridiculous arguments like this one. I'll debate individual policies but not philosophy.
That seems like a reasonable tactic to take.  Welcome to my thread. :-)
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on September 22, 2016, 06:43:12 AM
I am, but I'm no longer interested in debating it much on the Internet, because it devolves into ridiculous arguments like this one. I'll debate individual policies but not philosophy.

The thing I don't understand is why there has to be any ridiculous argument.

Why not just agree that no one wants a truly free market, but that we want as free of a market as possible within certain constraints?  And then we can discuss what constraints we agree on, or don't agree on (which may involve protecting certain people's liberties by outlawing slavery in our market, or may involve protecting the environment, or not, etc.)?

Why is the phrase "free market" such a holy grail that it must be defended and insisted upon at all costs, rather than saying "a market with less regulation (i.e. free-er) is better than a  more regulated one, in general (a less free), and here's the regulations I think are reasonable, or not"?  Rather than insisting "No!  I must have the phrase 'free market,' but these restrictions I want by law don't make it not a free market!'?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on September 22, 2016, 06:55:59 AM
The thing I don't understand is why there has to be any ridiculous argument.

Agreed.  When someone shows me that I've been using a phrase incorrectly, I tend to just stop using the phrase incorrectly . . . not try to argue that the rest of the world should change their definition.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Jrr85 on September 22, 2016, 07:27:19 AM
I am, but I'm no longer interested in debating it much on the Internet, because it devolves into ridiculous arguments like this one. I'll debate individual policies but not philosophy.

The thing I don't understand is why there has to be any ridiculous argument.

Why not just agree that no one wants a truly free market, but that we want as free of a market as possible within certain constraints?  And then we can discuss what constraints we agree on, or don't agree on (which may involve protecting certain people's liberties by outlawing slavery in our market, or may involve protecting the environment, or not, etc.)?

Why is the phrase "free market" such a holy grail that it must be defended and insisted upon at all costs, rather than saying "a market with less regulation (i.e. free-er) is better than a  more regulated one, in general (a less free), and here's the regulations I think are reasonable, or not"?  Rather than insisting "No!  I must have the phrase 'free market,' but these restrictions I want by law don't make it not a free market!'?

It's not that the phrase "free market" is a holy grail, it just has a meaning, and it does not mean no criminal code and/or anarchy.  The rule of law and free market are not just not inconsistent, they functionally go hand in hand.  Why are some people so committed to misapplying a definition?  It makes it hard to have a discussion when one party to the discussion is ignoring commonly accepted meanings of words and phrases. 
 
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on September 22, 2016, 07:31:54 AM
I am, but I'm no longer interested in debating it much on the Internet, because it devolves into ridiculous arguments like this one. I'll debate individual policies but not philosophy.

The thing I don't understand is why there has to be any ridiculous argument.

Why not just agree that no one wants a truly free market, but that we want as free of a market as possible within certain constraints?  And then we can discuss what constraints we agree on, or don't agree on (which may involve protecting certain people's liberties by outlawing slavery in our market, or may involve protecting the environment, or not, etc.)?

Why is the phrase "free market" such a holy grail that it must be defended and insisted upon at all costs, rather than saying "a market with less regulation (i.e. free-er) is better than a  more regulated one, in general (a less free), and here's the regulations I think are reasonable, or not"?  Rather than insisting "No!  I must have the phrase 'free market,' but these restrictions I want by law don't make it not a free market!'?

It's not that the phrase "free market" is a holy grail, it just has a meaning, and it does not mean no criminal code and/or anarchy.  The rule of law and free market are not just not inconsistent, they functionally go hand in hand.  Why are some people so committed to misapplying a definition?  It makes it hard to have a discussion when one party to the discussion is ignoring commonly accepted meanings of words and phrases.

So . . . just to confirm.  If the sale of guns in the US was banned by law, you would argue that a free market exists in the US?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on September 22, 2016, 07:35:36 AM
I am, but I'm no longer interested in debating it much on the Internet, because it devolves into ridiculous arguments like this one. I'll debate individual policies but not philosophy.

The thing I don't understand is why there has to be any ridiculous argument.

Why not just agree that no one wants a truly free market, but that we want as free of a market as possible within certain constraints?  And then we can discuss what constraints we agree on, or don't agree on (which may involve protecting certain people's liberties by outlawing slavery in our market, or may involve protecting the environment, or not, etc.)?

Why is the phrase "free market" such a holy grail that it must be defended and insisted upon at all costs, rather than saying "a market with less regulation (i.e. free-er) is better than a  more regulated one, in general (a less free), and here's the regulations I think are reasonable, or not"?  Rather than insisting "No!  I must have the phrase 'free market,' but these restrictions I want by law don't make it not a free market!'?

It's not that the phrase "free market" is a holy grail, it just has a meaning, and it does not mean no criminal code and/or anarchy.  The rule of law and free market are not just not inconsistent, they functionally go hand in hand.  Why are some people so committed to misapplying a definition?  It makes it hard to have a discussion when one party to the discussion is ignoring commonly accepted meanings of words and phrases.

GuitarStv has provided multiple definitions that all fit with what he says: A free market would allow slavery.  If you want to outlaw slavery, you're necessarily limiting the market with that law.

You say "The rule of law and free market are not just not inconsistent, they functionally go hand in hand." but that's meaningless, because they don't necessarily go hand-in-hand, they can be at-odds with each other.  What if a society had a law that only the state-sponsored company could sell oil, but everything else (all other goods) was unregulated.  Would you call that a free market?  I would not.  The law is restricting it.  By saying "oh, the market is free, except for what the law restricts, but that's still a free market!" you're tossing out what free market actually means.

If laws restrict a market, it's no longer a free market.  Whether that's the government sponsoring a monopoly, or outlawing slavery.

If you disagree, please give what definition you are using for free market.  As I said, GuitarStv provided several, all compatible with his argument.

What are you using, where "free market"=="anything is allowed, except if it's illegal, but it's still free anyways"?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: ShoulderThingThatGoesUp on September 22, 2016, 07:37:46 AM
I am, but I'm no longer interested in debating it much on the Internet, because it devolves into ridiculous arguments like this one. I'll debate individual policies but not philosophy.

The thing I don't understand is why there has to be any ridiculous argument.

Why not just agree that no one wants a truly free market, but that we want as free of a market as possible within certain constraints?  And then we can discuss what constraints we agree on, or don't agree on (which may involve protecting certain people's liberties by outlawing slavery in our market, or may involve protecting the environment, or not, etc.)?

Why is the phrase "free market" such a holy grail that it must be defended and insisted upon at all costs, rather than saying "a market with less regulation (i.e. free-er) is better than a  more regulated one, in general (a less free), and here's the regulations I think are reasonable, or not"?  Rather than insisting "No!  I must have the phrase 'free market,' but these restrictions I want by law don't make it not a free market!'?

It's hard to have a debate without somebody deciding to expand the scope and try to win by proving that well actually, everybody on the other side supports slavery. The most hilarious example of this I have ever heard is the MsScribe incident (http://slatestarcodex.com/2013/12/23/we-are-all-msscribe/). TLDR: the argument over which characters should bang in Harry Potter fanfiction was resolved by framing supporters of one side as irredeemable racists. But seriously, read it, because it's awesome.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on September 22, 2016, 07:41:40 AM
It's hard to have a debate without somebody deciding to expand the scope and try to win by proving that well actually, everybody on the other side supports slavery.

I think GuitarStv's point isn't that libertarians support slavery.  Of course that's stupid.

His point is that because you don't support slavery, you don't support a fully free market.  And, given that, let's now discuss what should be restricted in our market, and why.  Slavery seems like a good one (supporting people's right to liberty).  Should we support restrictions around pollution, why or why not?

Starting with the agreement that all markets are restricted in various ways (unless you want a truly free market, which I don't think anyone does) lets us start with a common ground to then discuss how we want them restricted based on our philosophies.

Property rights, for example, may lead to certain restrictions (you can't dump your nuclear waste on my property).

He's not actually saying the people in this thread who support a free market are secretly racists who want slavery back, rather than they don't actually support a fully free market.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on September 22, 2016, 07:47:37 AM
That's about right.  Thanks ARS.

The original reason that I mentioned that free markets don't really exist was to attempt to show that there is common ground (that restrictions to markets must occur) between libertarian beliefs and other political leanings . . . the argument should focus on what particular areas the restrictions should take place. 
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: ShoulderThingThatGoesUp on September 22, 2016, 07:51:59 AM
It's hard to have a debate without somebody deciding to expand the scope and try to win by proving that well actually, everybody on the other side supports slavery.

I think GuitarStv's point isn't that libertarians support slavery.  Of course that's stupid.

His point is that because you don't support slavery, you don't support a fully free market.  And, given that, let's now discuss what should be restricted in our market, and why.  Slavery seems like a good one (supporting people's right to liberty).  Should we support restrictions around pollution, why or why not?

Starting with the agreement that all markets are restricted in various ways (unless you want a truly free market, which I don't think anyone does) lets us start with a common ground to then discuss how we want them restricted based on our philosophies.

Property rights, for example, may lead to certain restrictions (you can't dump your nuclear waste on my property).

He's not actually saying the people in this thread who support a free market are secretly racists who want slavery back, rather than they don't actually support a fully free market.

I came up with a bunch of reasons to write about how it's a stupid and useless argument, but let's not recreate the argument by arguing about the argument.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Jack on September 22, 2016, 08:01:09 AM
You all are wrong. It is possible for a market to be fully a "free market" without allowing slavery.

You all keep focusing on the "free" part, but that's wrong. Here's what you're missing: a free market must first be a market. There is no "market" for slaves because "markets" depend on people freely choosing to participate in the transaction, and slaves aren't free to choose to participate in the transaction!

A free market, by definition, is free of any form of violence or coercion -- by government, or in this case, the market participants themselves -- but violence is (again, by definition) an inherent feature of slavery. Therefore, slavery and the free market are fundamentally incompatible.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on September 22, 2016, 08:29:34 AM
You all are wrong. It is possible for a market to be fully a "free market" without allowing slavery.

You all keep focusing on the "free" part, but that's wrong. Here's what you're missing: a free market must first be a market. There is no "market" for slaves because "markets" depend on people freely choosing to participate in the transaction, and slaves aren't free to choose to participate in the transaction!

A free market, by definition, is free of any form of violence or coercion -- by government, or in this case, the market participants themselves -- but violence is (again, by definition) an inherent feature of slavery. Therefore, slavery and the free market are fundamentally incompatible.

When heads of cattle or pigs are sold for slaughter there's plenty of violence too.  The cattle and pigs don't agree to participate in the transaction.  Nobody cares because those animals are the commodity.

Slaves are the commodity in the slave trade.  The buyer and seller in a slave market can participate freely in the transaction, so it meets the conditions of being a market.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: bacchi on September 22, 2016, 08:30:56 AM
A free market, by definition, is free of any form of violence or coercion -- by government, or in this case, the market participants themselves -- but violence is (again, by definition) an inherent feature of slavery. Therefore, slavery and the free market are fundamentally incompatible.

It doesn't have to be slavery. It can be a market for C4 plastique in a handy suitcase in Times Square, where the next shop over sells cell phones and detonators (surely I can buy explosives to blow up a hill on my property?).

Murray Rothbard, a von Mises follower and friend of Ron Paul*, advocated for the selling of children. Because, ya know, otherwise it was coercion of the parents to force them to care for their kids. (The parents could also refuse to feed the kids and the government couldn't do anything about it.) So it's not out of the realm of possibility that a Libertarian would take the "free market" position to an absurd level and support slavery.

It does appear that few are truly for a complete "free market" and instead, as ARS suggested, we're quibbling about what restrictions the market has.


*https://mises.org/library/man-economy-and-liberty-essays-honor-murray-n-rothbard
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on September 22, 2016, 08:40:03 AM
It does appear that few are truly for a complete "free market" and instead, as ARS suggested, we're quibbling about what restrictions the market has.

I wouldn't use the word "quibbling" though.

I actually think that's where the discussion gets interesting, if everyone can be respectful and go "Oh, that's where you'd draw the line?  Interesting.  Here's why I disagree, and would draw it over here, and the reasoning for doing so."

It would appear to be quibbling to some, but that's fine--I like philosophical discussions like that, which others may view as quibbling.  :)
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Jrr85 on September 22, 2016, 08:45:54 AM
I am, but I'm no longer interested in debating it much on the Internet, because it devolves into ridiculous arguments like this one. I'll debate individual policies but not philosophy.

The thing I don't understand is why there has to be any ridiculous argument.

Why not just agree that no one wants a truly free market, but that we want as free of a market as possible within certain constraints?  And then we can discuss what constraints we agree on, or don't agree on (which may involve protecting certain people's liberties by outlawing slavery in our market, or may involve protecting the environment, or not, etc.)?

Why is the phrase "free market" such a holy grail that it must be defended and insisted upon at all costs, rather than saying "a market with less regulation (i.e. free-er) is better than a  more regulated one, in general (a less free), and here's the regulations I think are reasonable, or not"?  Rather than insisting "No!  I must have the phrase 'free market,' but these restrictions I want by law don't make it not a free market!'?

It's not that the phrase "free market" is a holy grail, it just has a meaning, and it does not mean no criminal code and/or anarchy.  The rule of law and free market are not just not inconsistent, they functionally go hand in hand.  Why are some people so committed to misapplying a definition?  It makes it hard to have a discussion when one party to the discussion is ignoring commonly accepted meanings of words and phrases.

So . . . just to confirm.  If the sale of guns in the US was banned by law, you would argue that a free market exists in the US?

There are multiple markets and yes, not having a free market in guns does not mean you can't have free markets in other areas or free markets in general.  You obviously have negative impacts on other freedom issues, but an exercise of police power does not mean you don't have a free market, although in some instances, the line could get blurry between criminal law and actually interfering with the competition (e.g., outlawing switchblades may have negative impacts on freedom and may be antifreedom, but it's not really anti-free market if it's driven by safety concerns and done pursuant to police power; but if it's lobbied for by the manufacturers of fixed blade knifes (or whatever would be competition), that starts to look like an anti-free market action.  And if it's justified as a regulation of commerce done in order to protect native manufacturers of fixed blades from competition from primarily foreign switch blade manufacturers, then it's clear you no longer have free competition in that market.   
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Jack on September 22, 2016, 08:51:43 AM
You all are wrong. It is possible for a market to be fully a "free market" without allowing slavery.

You all keep focusing on the "free" part, but that's wrong. Here's what you're missing: a free market must first be a market. There is no "market" for slaves because "markets" depend on people freely choosing to participate in the transaction, and slaves aren't free to choose to participate in the transaction!

A free market, by definition, is free of any form of violence or coercion -- by government, or in this case, the market participants themselves -- but violence is (again, by definition) an inherent feature of slavery. Therefore, slavery and the free market are fundamentally incompatible.

When heads of cattle or pigs are sold for slaughter there's plenty of violence too.  The cattle and pigs don't agree to participate in the transaction.  Nobody cares because those animals are the commodity.

Slaves are the commodity in the slave trade.  The buyer and seller in a slave market can participate freely in the transaction, so it meets the conditions of being a market.

FYI, slaves are people, and people have a natural right to agency and ownership over themselves.

So, either you're arguing that people don't have that natural right (in other words, you're the one arguing in favor of slavery), or you're arguing that cows and pigs are people. Which is it?

It doesn't have to be slavery. It can be a market for C4 plastique in a handy suitcase in Times Square, where the next shop over sells cell phones and detonators (surely I can buy explosives to blow up a hill on my property?).

Or the same shop could sell both the explosive and detonators. So what?

Now, clearly you're insinuating that some lunatic would buy the explosives and blow up Times Square. But it's using the explosives to harm others that's the problem, not merely buying them. So fix the real problem!

So it's not out of the realm of possibility that a Libertarian would take the "free market" position to an absurd level and support slavery.

Sure, in the same way that it's not out of the realm of possibility that any random dumbass would take any random position to an absurd level. If we judged every political party on the dumbass positions of its lunatic fringe, no reasoned discourse would be possible (see also: the vast majority of political discussions on the Internet) and you might as well ask arebelspy to lock the thread.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on September 22, 2016, 08:52:58 AM
I am, but I'm no longer interested in debating it much on the Internet, because it devolves into ridiculous arguments like this one. I'll debate individual policies but not philosophy.

The thing I don't understand is why there has to be any ridiculous argument.

Why not just agree that no one wants a truly free market, but that we want as free of a market as possible within certain constraints?  And then we can discuss what constraints we agree on, or don't agree on (which may involve protecting certain people's liberties by outlawing slavery in our market, or may involve protecting the environment, or not, etc.)?

Why is the phrase "free market" such a holy grail that it must be defended and insisted upon at all costs, rather than saying "a market with less regulation (i.e. free-er) is better than a  more regulated one, in general (a less free), and here's the regulations I think are reasonable, or not"?  Rather than insisting "No!  I must have the phrase 'free market,' but these restrictions I want by law don't make it not a free market!'?

It's not that the phrase "free market" is a holy grail, it just has a meaning, and it does not mean no criminal code and/or anarchy.  The rule of law and free market are not just not inconsistent, they functionally go hand in hand.  Why are some people so committed to misapplying a definition?  It makes it hard to have a discussion when one party to the discussion is ignoring commonly accepted meanings of words and phrases.

So . . . just to confirm.  If the sale of guns in the US was banned by law, you would argue that a free market exists in the US?

There are multiple markets and yes, not having a free market in guns does not mean you can't have free markets in other areas or free markets in general.  You obviously have negative impacts on other freedom issues, but an exercise of police power does not mean you don't have a free market, although in some instances, the line could get blurry between criminal law and actually interfering with the competition (e.g., outlawing switchblades may have negative impacts on freedom and may be antifreedom, but it's not really anti-free market if it's driven by safety concerns and done pursuant to police power; but if it's lobbied for by the manufacturers of fixed blade knifes (or whatever would be competition), that starts to look like an anti-free market action.  And if it's justified as a regulation of commerce done in order to protect native manufacturers of fixed blades from competition from primarily foreign switch blade manufacturers, then it's clear you no longer have free competition in that market.   

I can agree that a market restricted tangentially by laws created for certain purposes (safety, in your example) is better than a market restricted for other purposes (lobbying by interested parties, in your example).

The question we're getting at is: what are these restrictions that fall under the former categories that we are okay with, based on our personal philosophies?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on September 22, 2016, 08:58:57 AM
I am, but I'm no longer interested in debating it much on the Internet, because it devolves into ridiculous arguments like this one. I'll debate individual policies but not philosophy.

The thing I don't understand is why there has to be any ridiculous argument.

Why not just agree that no one wants a truly free market, but that we want as free of a market as possible within certain constraints?  And then we can discuss what constraints we agree on, or don't agree on (which may involve protecting certain people's liberties by outlawing slavery in our market, or may involve protecting the environment, or not, etc.)?

Why is the phrase "free market" such a holy grail that it must be defended and insisted upon at all costs, rather than saying "a market with less regulation (i.e. free-er) is better than a  more regulated one, in general (a less free), and here's the regulations I think are reasonable, or not"?  Rather than insisting "No!  I must have the phrase 'free market,' but these restrictions I want by law don't make it not a free market!'?

It's not that the phrase "free market" is a holy grail, it just has a meaning, and it does not mean no criminal code and/or anarchy.  The rule of law and free market are not just not inconsistent, they functionally go hand in hand.  Why are some people so committed to misapplying a definition?  It makes it hard to have a discussion when one party to the discussion is ignoring commonly accepted meanings of words and phrases.

So . . . just to confirm.  If the sale of guns in the US was banned by law, you would argue that a free market exists in the US?

There are multiple markets and yes, not having a free market in guns does not mean you can't have free markets in other areas or free markets in general.  You obviously have negative impacts on other freedom issues, but an exercise of police power does not mean you don't have a free market, although in some instances, the line could get blurry between criminal law and actually interfering with the competition (e.g., outlawing switchblades may have negative impacts on freedom and may be antifreedom, but it's not really anti-free market if it's driven by safety concerns and done pursuant to police power; but if it's lobbied for by the manufacturers of fixed blade knifes (or whatever would be competition), that starts to look like an anti-free market action.  And if it's justified as a regulation of commerce done in order to protect native manufacturers of fixed blades from competition from primarily foreign switch blade manufacturers, then it's clear you no longer have free competition in that market.   

I'm not sure it's as easy to separate markets the way you appear to be attempting to do.

If I banned all guns, that's going to have an impact on gun manufacturers obviously.  But it's also going to have an impact on ammunition sales, the mining of the various metals used to build the guns/bullets, the jobs of the chemists who mix the chemical ingredients for producing gunpowder, the brass workers who create the shells of the ammunition, the forestry workers who cut the trees for the wood that goes into the butt of the gun, the people who run gun ranges, the pulp and paper mill who create the paper used for targets on gun ranges, etc.

Slavery effected many more markets than that.  Things are quite interrelated.  How many markets need to be affected by restrictions before you declare a system is no longer be a free market?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Mississippi Mudstache on September 22, 2016, 09:37:37 AM
FYI, slaves are people, and people have a natural right to agency and ownership over themselves.

What law of the universe gives people "a natural right to agency and ownership over themselves", but not the same to cows and pigs, or for that matter, to potatoes and onions? I understand that I'm delving into the absurd towards the end of that thought, but the point is that a line must be drawn somewhere, and to draw the line between humans and "all other living things" seems somewhat arbitrary to me. Do chimpanzees and bonobos have a natural right to agency and ownership over themselves? If not, at which point along the evolutionary line did this right get conferred to humankind? Homo habilis? Homo erectus? Did Homo neanderthalensis or H. floresiensis have the same natural rights as modern humans?

I'm honestly curious, because I don't believe that people have a "natural" right to anything - only the rights that we've chosen to give one another and collectively enforced. Which of course leads to the conclusion that we have restricted the "market" by choosing to acknowledge and regulate the idea of personal rights.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on September 22, 2016, 09:41:04 AM
FYI, slaves are people, and people have a natural right to agency and ownership over themselves.

What law of the universe gives people "a natural right to agency and ownership over themselves", but not the same to cows and pigs, or for that matter, to potatoes and onions? I understand that I'm delving into the absurd towards the end of that thought, but the point is that a line must be drawn somewhere, and to draw the line between humans and "all other living things" seems somewhat arbitrary to me. Do chimpanzees and bonobos have a natural right to agency and ownership over themselves? If not, at which point along the evolutionary line did this right get conferred to humankind? Homo habilis? Homo erectus? Did Homo neanderthalensis or H. floresiensis have the same natural rights as modern humans?

I'm honestly curious, because I don't believe that people have a "natural" right to anything - only the rights that we've chosen to give one another and collectively enforced. Which of course leads to the conclusion that we have restricted the "market" by choosing to acknowledge and regulate the idea of personal rights.

Often times people will point to the ability to reason as the distinguishing thing to draw the line on.  The problem with that is that there are people with disabilities who have mental capacity below that of a smart cocker spaniel . . . if you draw the line there, you could enslave these folks.  Then we get into the stuff recently being learned about animal reasoning and the waters get even more murky.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: badbear on September 22, 2016, 09:54:59 AM
Often times people will point to the ability to reason as the distinguishing thing to draw the line on.  The problem with that is that there are people with disabilities who have mental capacity below that of a smart cocker spaniel . . . if you draw the line there, you could enslave these folks.  Then we get into the stuff recently being learned about animal reasoning and the waters get even more murky.

But the human species, as a whole, reasons at a much higher level than Fido. People with the most severe mental disabilities usually don't have full autonomy over their lives and may have guardianship over them like children. It doesn't mean that they can be enslaved or mistreated any more than children can be. Also note that it is illegal to abuse dogs and a number of other animals. Some animals are more equal than others, I suppose, but I agree that it's a hard line to draw.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: bacchi on September 22, 2016, 10:23:25 AM
It doesn't have to be slavery. It can be a market for C4 plastique in a handy suitcase in Times Square, where the next shop over sells cell phones and detonators (surely I can buy explosives to blow up a hill on my property?).

Or the same shop could sell both the explosive and detonators. So what?

Now, clearly you're insinuating that some lunatic would buy the explosives and blow up Times Square. But it's using the explosives to harm others that's the problem, not merely buying them. So fix the real problem!

Of course the real problem is the actual violence. So you wouldn't restrict my right to buy C4? What about a mortar and mortar shells?

You commented out the part about selling children. Why can't a parent sell his/her children? Are you going to coerce a parent to take care of their child? Why and why not? Can the state punish a parent for not feeding their child? But "such obligations would entail positive acts coerced upon the parent and depriving the parent of his rights."*

Let's be realistic. (L)ibertarians and (l)ibertarians have restrictions on the market. They may want fewer restrictions than others but they have restrictions.


* https://mises.org/library/children-and-rights
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Jack on September 22, 2016, 10:26:00 AM
I'm honestly curious, because I don't believe that people have a "natural" right to anything - only the rights that we've chosen to give one another and collectively enforced.

In that case, how would it be any less valid to organize society by having one strongman impose his dictatorial will on everyone else?

(Hint:
Spoiler: show
If your answer resembles anything like "because people deserve to be able to choose," you're arguing for natural rights.
)



As far as the "do animals have natural rights?" (or "which animals have natural rights?") question goes, I'm undecided on that myself. If y'all want to argue that the free market should not include sales of animals for the same reason it does not include slavery, I'm not going to object. Instead, I'd simply congratulate you for having an internally-consistent ideology and move on.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Jack on September 22, 2016, 10:32:36 AM
What about a mortar and mortar shells?

What about it? It's still just an inanimate object.

You commented out the part about selling children. Why can't a parent sell his/her children?

For the same reason he can't sell an adult.

Are you going to coerce a parent to take care of their child? Why and why not? Can the state punish a parent for not feeding their child? But "such obligations would entail positive acts coerced upon the parent and depriving the parent of his rights."*

Perhaps the decision to create a child indicates acceptance of an implied contract to care for that child until adulthood. Then the state could legitimately punish a parent for failing to uphold that contractual obligation.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: bacchi on September 22, 2016, 10:36:26 AM
Are you going to coerce a parent to take care of their child? Why and why not? Can the state punish a parent for not feeding their child? But "such obligations would entail positive acts coerced upon the parent and depriving the parent of his rights."*

Perhaps the decision to create a child indicates acceptance of an implied contract to care for that child until adulthood. Then the state could legitimately punish a parent for failing to uphold that contractual obligation.

So is that a sort of...social contract? ;)

Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: badbear on September 22, 2016, 10:41:24 AM
There are currently some ways in which children are legally sold, more or less. Adoptions and surrogacy come to mind.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: FINate on September 22, 2016, 10:47:06 AM
This thread has devolved into ridiculous semantic arguments.

From an economic point of view a free market (http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/free%20market) ("an economic market or system in which prices are based on competition among private businesses and not controlled by a government") is generally the most efficient and scalable way to organize an economy, though there are exception to this (natural monopolies as one example). However efficient, free markets are amoral and unconcerned with ethical or moral outcomes. This is why we have regulation and government intervention in the market. As a society we've decided that it's wrong for people to trade certain goods, or to engage in certain behaviors. It's important to note that government itself is not necessarily ethical or moral - some of the worst atrocities of the 20th century were instigated by governments - including democratically elected ones (e.g. Japanese internment camps, the Tuskegee study).

I'm not interested in debates about ideological purity, and I don't accept the view that libertarianism is the same as unfettered laissez faire capitalism, which is analogous to saying that all forms of socialism are the same as communism (I think the Bernie supporters can understand this).

We need a mix of both. The substantive debate is not at the ideological extremes, is the nuance in the middle. As a libertarian, my view is that free markets work well in most cases and regulation/intervention should be relatively rare, yet today the regulatory burden is extremely high and we've gone too far to the side of intervention. In turn this is harming our economy. I live in California, which is even worse. Regulations like CEQA and overly restrictive zoning have been used for decades to greatly reduce the amount of housing built in the SF Bay Area and along the California coast. This has caused real estate prices to explode thereby further enriching already wealthy home owners while triggered a housing crisis at the lower end of the income scale. Now communities are starting to propose rent control as a "solution" even though we know this does not work and will make things worse. This is happening in areas that are already urban but with low density, mostly single family homes. With less (one could argue better) regulation free market forces would supply higher density housing which would eventually bring prices down (things are so bad now, estimates are that it would take 10 years or more of development to see results). Allowing this to happen would be good for those with middle and lower incomes, and it would good for the environment by reducing urban sprawl.

I'm a libertarian today because I think we've gone too far with regulation. My views would likely have been considered progressive 100+ years ago when there were too few regulations.


 
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on September 22, 2016, 10:48:40 AM
I'm honestly curious, because I don't believe that people have a "natural" right to anything - only the rights that we've chosen to give one another and collectively enforced.

In that case, how would it be any less valid to organize society by having one strongman impose his dictatorial will on everyone else?

Maybe I just don't know what you mean by "valid," but I don't think a democracy is more "valid" a government than a dictatorship.

I think it's almost always the one that leads to more overall happiness (some dictatorships might lead to more happiness, but more often than not, they won't, and I don't think they have, historically).  There's no natural rights needed in that argument, if this is what you're trying to maximize.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on September 22, 2016, 10:51:00 AM
This thread has devolved into ridiculous semantic arguments.

I don't think it has.

Quote
From an economic point of view a free market (http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/free%20market) ("an economic market or system in which prices are based on competition among private businesses and not controlled by a government") is generally the most efficient and scalable way to organize an economy, though there are exception to this (natural monopolies as one example). However efficient, free markets are amoral and unconcerned with ethical or moral outcomes. This is why we have regulation and government intervention in the market.

Right.  We're in 100% agreement.  Now let's discuss what government intervention and regulation we should have in the market (ala your final sentence I quoted) which makes it no longer 100% free, but for good reason.

Like, you say now you're in favor of less regulation, 100 years ago you'd have been in favor of more.

What do you want regulated less?  Why?

EDIT:  Rather than just ask questions, I'll give an example of where I see government overreach in regulation.

I think the interstate commerce clause, and how it's been used to regulate pretty much everything, is *, and I think Wickard v. Filburn (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wickard_v._Filburn) is one of the worst Supreme Court decisions ever (tl;dr: Guy was growing his own crops to feed his own pigs, and was fined, and US Supreme Court ruled that yes, the government can regulate him because he was affecting commerce by NOT buying someone else's crops), which led to terrible government overexpansion.

I don't think this is just semantics, but segues into important discussion topics.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on September 22, 2016, 11:07:48 AM
I'm honestly curious, because I don't believe that people have a "natural" right to anything - only the rights that we've chosen to give one another and collectively enforced.

In that case, how would it be any less valid to organize society by having one strongman impose his dictatorial will on everyone else?

Maybe I just don't know what you mean by "valid," but I don't think a democracy is more "valid" a government than a dictatorship.

I think it's almost always the one that leads to more overall happiness (some dictatorships might lead to more happiness, but more often than not, they won't, and I don't think they have, historically).  There's no natural rights needed in that argument, if this is what you're trying to maximize.

One could argue that a benevolent dictatorship is far better (and more valid) for the people and that democracy should be feared because the worst and basest parts of society get equal weighting as the greatest and most selfless.  Plato certainly made that case in The Republic.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on September 22, 2016, 11:22:49 AM
I'm honestly curious, because I don't believe that people have a "natural" right to anything - only the rights that we've chosen to give one another and collectively enforced.

In that case, how would it be any less valid to organize society by having one strongman impose his dictatorial will on everyone else?

Maybe I just don't know what you mean by "valid," but I don't think a democracy is more "valid" a government than a dictatorship.

I think it's almost always the one that leads to more overall happiness (some dictatorships might lead to more happiness, but more often than not, they won't, and I don't think they have, historically).  There's no natural rights needed in that argument, if this is what you're trying to maximize.

One could argue that a benevolent dictatorship is far better (and more valid) for the people and that democracy should be feared because the worst and basest parts of society get equal weighting as the greatest and most selfless.  Plato certainly made that case in The Republic.

Yes, and I said there are exceptions where some dictatorships may lead to more happiness, but I think most times, this won't be the case.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Jrr85 on September 22, 2016, 11:24:21 AM
FYI, slaves are people, and people have a natural right to agency and ownership over themselves.

What law of the universe gives people "a natural right to agency and ownership over themselves", but not the same to cows and pigs, or for that matter, to potatoes and onions? I understand that I'm delving into the absurd towards the end of that thought, but the point is that a line must be drawn somewhere, and to draw the line between humans and "all other living things" seems somewhat arbitrary to me. Do chimpanzees and bonobos have a natural right to agency and ownership over themselves? If not, at which point along the evolutionary line did this right get conferred to humankind? Homo habilis? Homo erectus? Did Homo neanderthalensis or H. floresiensis have the same natural rights as modern humans?

I'm honestly curious, because I don't believe that people have a "natural" right to anything - only the rights that we've chosen to give one another and collectively enforced. Which of course leads to the conclusion that we have restricted the "market" by choosing to acknowledge and regulate the idea of personal rights.

If you don't believe in natural rights, then the whole thing is just arbitrary.  You can pick something you'd like to maximize and hope that it appeals to enough people that you have the might to make it right.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Jack on September 22, 2016, 11:25:51 AM
I'm honestly curious, because I don't believe that people have a "natural" right to anything - only the rights that we've chosen to give one another and collectively enforced.

In that case, how would it be any less valid to organize society by having one strongman impose his dictatorial will on everyone else?

Maybe I just don't know what you mean by "valid," but I don't think a democracy is more "valid" a government than a dictatorship.

I think it's almost always the one that leads to more overall happiness (some dictatorships might lead to more happiness, but more often than not, they won't, and I don't think they have, historically).  There's no natural rights needed in that argument, if this is what you're trying to maximize.

One could argue that a benevolent dictatorship is far better (and more valid) for the people and that democracy should be feared because the worst and basest parts of society get equal weighting as the greatest and most selfless.  Plato certainly made that case in The Republic.

So who gets to decide that maximizing happiness is the correct goal? And whose opinion of what constitutes happiness wins when there is disagreement? Is it ethical to use violent force to impose happiness on others? If I believed that murdering everyone else would make me so happy that the overall happiness would be maximized, do you think I would be wrong to act on that belief?

How is this philosophy any different from "might makes right?"

[To the others who believe either mainstream candidate is a great choice to lead our country - please send me the recipe for what you're drinking!  (Or is it me that needs to get with the program?)

I don't think ethyl alcohol is capable of that. My guess is they've switched to psychedelic drugs instead.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Mississippi Mudstache on September 22, 2016, 11:28:22 AM
I'm honestly curious, because I don't believe that people have a "natural" right to anything - only the rights that we've chosen to give one another and collectively enforced.

In that case, how would it be any less valid to organize society by having one strongman impose his dictatorial will on everyone else?

Maybe I just don't know what you mean by "valid," but I don't think a democracy is more "valid" a government than a dictatorship.

I think it's almost always the one that leads to more overall happiness (some dictatorships might lead to more happiness, but more often than not, they won't, and I don't think they have, historically).  There's no natural rights needed in that argument, if this is what you're trying to maximize.

Democracy is a relative newcomer in the realm of cultural arrangements aimed at creating and maintaining an orderly society. I don't view it as more "valid" than a kingdom/empire/dictatorship, but I do think that it has some laudable benefits as compared to alternative arrangements. The increased peacefulness and cooperation of large groups of people, resulting in the recognition, codification, and enforcement of human rights is one of the benefits that I value the most. Human rights are derived from the collective agreement of an advanced human society. With no society, there are no human rights.

I don't think that democracy is a panacea. In regions that lack cultural traits that would allow them to peaceably govern themselves (the Middle East?), I think a dictatorship might be a better option for stabilizing society and increasing happiness/reducing suffering. But that's just an offhand conclusion based on our recent ham-handed de-stabilization of that region.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on September 22, 2016, 11:30:40 AM
So who gets to decide that maximizing happiness is the correct goal?

I can't tell if you're serious.

I do, of course.

Though I'm not saying that is the correct goal.

Quote
If I believed that murdering everyone else would make me so happy that the overall happiness would be maximized, do you think I would be wrong to act on that belief?

Relevant SMBC: http://www.smbc-comics.com/comic/2012-04-03 (http://www.smbc-comics.com/comic/2012-04-03)
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Mississippi Mudstache on September 22, 2016, 11:32:27 AM
If you don't believe in natural rights, then the whole thing is just arbitrary.  You can pick something you'd like to maximize and hope that it appeals to enough people that you have the might to make it right.

I'm unaware of a compelling argument that natural rights are a thing, any more than Zeus or the tooth fairy or unicorns. Does believing in them make them exist? Perhaps, depending on your definition of existence. I just like to think we're doing pretty well for a self-organizing collection of carbon-based molecules.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on September 22, 2016, 11:33:06 AM
I'm honestly curious, because I don't believe that people have a "natural" right to anything - only the rights that we've chosen to give one another and collectively enforced.

In that case, how would it be any less valid to organize society by having one strongman impose his dictatorial will on everyone else?

Maybe I just don't know what you mean by "valid," but I don't think a democracy is more "valid" a government than a dictatorship.

I think it's almost always the one that leads to more overall happiness (some dictatorships might lead to more happiness, but more often than not, they won't, and I don't think they have, historically).  There's no natural rights needed in that argument, if this is what you're trying to maximize.

One could argue that a benevolent dictatorship is far better (and more valid) for the people and that democracy should be feared because the worst and basest parts of society get equal weighting as the greatest and most selfless.  Plato certainly made that case in The Republic.

So who gets to decide that maximizing happiness is the correct goal? And whose opinion of what constitutes happiness wins when there is disagreement? Is it ethical to use violent force to impose happiness on others? If I believed that murdering everyone else would make me so happy that the overall happiness would be maximized, do you think I would be wrong to act on that belief?

How is this philosophy any different from "might makes right?"

I suspect that someone who decided to base his or her framework around happiness would argue that murdering someone prevents that person from ever experiencing happiness again - the balance of a lifetime of happiness would probably outweigh any momentary joy that the murderer might gain from the act.

Any philosophy needs to first create a moral framework and then attempt to convince others of the correctness of this framework.  There's no reason this made up framework can't be based around happiness rather than your own made up frame work of 'Natural Rights'.  There is a big problem though with assuming that your framework is necessarily the right one, or shared by others.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: robartsd on September 22, 2016, 11:53:31 AM
Philosophically, libertarian-ism is very appealing to me. I don't see any issues reconciling protection of the environment with libertarian philosophy - just tax people based on damage they do to the environment and justify the tax as compensation for the external harm they are choosing to do. No need to set limits or prohibitions, just increase taxes until the market fixes the problem. Social assistance for education and healthcare are probably the biggest challenges for me to fully embrace libertarian philosophy. I do think that non-profits might be more efficient (from a value per dollar spent perspective) than government agencies at meeting the actual needs, but I do understand concerns that universal access under a fully private model could be an issue. Also, I think state governments could provide these without federal involvement under a fully libertarian federal government.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on September 22, 2016, 12:02:42 PM
Philosophically, libertarian-ism is very appealing to me. I don't see any issues reconciling protection of the environment with libertarian philosophy - just tax people based on damage they do to the environment and justify the tax as compensation for the external harm they are choosing to do. No need to set limits or prohibitions, just increase taxes until the market fixes the problem.

This sounds great in theory . . . but the issue is in determining the amount to tax people.  What's the value of keeping a species of moth, bird, or turtle from extinction?  What if the company wiping out these species decides that this price is acceptable?  Are we OK with giving a very deep pocketed company the legal right to destroy our world for a price?


Look at the huge pollution costs associated with tailings ponds that were last used for mining gold more than a hundred years ago.  Nobody foresaw these issues being so problematic when the mining was going on, and now it's too late to make the people responsible for the issue to pay for it (they're all dead).

Sometimes the market doesn't react quickly enough.  Who pays to fix the problem when this occurs?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Northwestie on September 22, 2016, 12:36:44 PM
I prefer the current model where we try to PREVENT damage.  Putting the broken puzzle back together just doesn't work very well
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: badbear on September 22, 2016, 01:16:01 PM
I prefer the current model where we try to PREVENT damage.  Putting the broken puzzle back together just doesn't work very well

I think prevention in the case where it's very difficult to undo the damage is sensible. That's why Gary Johnson would keep the EPA, while perhaps reining in some of its most ridiculous abuses of power, like defining puddles as wetlands (http://www.cato.org/blog/stopping-epa-regulating-puddles) to prevent people from doing what they like with their own land.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: robartsd on September 22, 2016, 01:20:06 PM
This sounds great in theory . . . but the issue is in determining the amount to tax people.  What's the value of keeping a species of moth, bird, or turtle from extinction?  What if the company wiping out these species decides that this price is acceptable?  Are we OK with giving a very deep pocketed company the legal right to destroy our world for a price?
I certainly don't see a problem with setting extremely high taxes/fees on some things with the intent that it would be cost prohibitive to do any of the damage. If the price is high enough, the deep pocketed company will not be interested. In areas such as burning fossil fuel, I'd much rather see a straight up tax than any kind of "Cap and Trade" system that creates new markets for insider profits and corporate abuse. I would want no exemptions to such taxes: governmental agencies would have to include these costs in their budgets; imported goods would be subject to a tariff equal to the tax for producing and distributing the goods domestically.

Look at the huge pollution costs associated with tailings ponds that were last used for mining gold more than a hundred years ago.  Nobody foresaw these issues being so problematic when the mining was going on, and now it's too late to make the people responsible for the issue to pay for it (they're all dead).

Sometimes the market doesn't react quickly enough.  Who pays to fix the problem when this occurs?
This is no more of a problem with a tax/fee based approach to control than any other form of regulation. Legislation often reacts slower than the market (just be sure the legislation is written in a way that allows agencies to adjust the taxes/fees charged without additional legislation). Taxes/fees from current environmental damage (deemed an appropriate balance between economic needs and environmental protection) could certainly be used to fund repair of old damage.

The point is that damaging the environment in any way should have an associated economic cost, but not a criminal punishment. Some damage should have such a high economic cost that no rational actor would choose to do it; other damage should find a balance between economic and environmental needs providing incentives to improve efficiency. Attempts to hide damage to the environment; however, would remain criminal.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Northwestie on September 22, 2016, 01:33:46 PM
I prefer the current model where we try to PREVENT damage.  Putting the broken puzzle back together just doesn't work very well

I think prevention in the case where it's very difficult to undo the damage is sensible. That's why Gary Johnson would keep the EPA, while perhaps reining in some of its most ridiculous abuses of power, like defining puddles as wetlands (http://www.cato.org/blog/stopping-epa-regulating-puddles) to prevent people from doing what they like with their own land.

Yea - the CATO Institute.  Since I work in some large restoration projects - that article is a bunch of crap.  Section 404 and 401 of the Clean Water Act have been adjusted over the past two decades so they are LESS restrictive.  The idea that "puddles" are regulated has no merit. 

And no - just because a regulated stream or wetland lies on public property does not mean you just get whatever-the-hell you want to do with it.  It's the stale argument that ends up demanding public costs for private gain.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: FINate on September 22, 2016, 01:53:48 PM
I prefer the current model where we try to PREVENT damage.  Putting the broken puzzle back together just doesn't work very well

I think prevention in the case where it's very difficult to undo the damage is sensible. That's why Gary Johnson would keep the EPA, while perhaps reining in some of its most ridiculous abuses of power, like defining puddles as wetlands (http://www.cato.org/blog/stopping-epa-regulating-puddles) to prevent people from doing what they like with their own land.

Yea - the CATO Institute.  Since I work in some large restoration projects - that article is a bunch of crap.  Section 404 and 401 of the Clean Water Act have been adjusted over the past two decades so they are LESS restrictive.  The idea that "puddles" are regulated has no merit.

And no - just because a regulated stream or wetland lies on public property does not mean you just get whatever-the-hell you want to do with it.  It's the stale argument that ends up demanding public costs for private gain.

I personally know of two local projects where I live that were held up for years because of wetlands issues. In one case, it was a man made drainage ditch that took several years to clear up. In the other it is quite literally a puddle that is still in discussion several years later. I'm all for wetlands restoration and protection, but in my area this is being abused by people who just want to stop all development.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: BDWW on September 22, 2016, 02:39:38 PM
I prefer the current model where we try to PREVENT damage.  Putting the broken puzzle back together just doesn't work very well

I think prevention in the case where it's very difficult to undo the damage is sensible. That's why Gary Johnson would keep the EPA, while perhaps reining in some of its most ridiculous abuses of power, like defining puddles as wetlands (http://www.cato.org/blog/stopping-epa-regulating-puddles) to prevent people from doing what they like with their own land.

Yea - the CATO Institute.  Since I work in some large restoration projects - that article is a bunch of crap.  Section 404 and 401 of the Clean Water Act have been adjusted over the past two decades so they are LESS restrictive.  The idea that "puddles" are regulated has no merit.

And no - just because a regulated stream or wetland lies on public property does not mean you just get whatever-the-hell you want to do with it.  It's the stale argument that ends up demanding public costs for private gain.

I personally know of two local projects where I live that were held up for years because of wetlands issues. In one case, it was a man made drainage ditch that took several years to clear up. In the other it is quite literally a puddle that is still in discussion several years later. I'm all for wetlands restoration and protection, but in my area this is being abused by people who just want to stop all development.

My anecdotal experience conflicts with Northwestie's statements too. We had a long protracted battle on the family ranch because they attempted to classify part of a field as wetlands. The thing was, it was only that wet because the field was irrigated. Eventually we stopped irrigating it for 2 years, and got it tossed after paying a couple experts to come in and testify that it was not indeed a wetlands.  Turns out it was a low spot in the field where irrigation water collected. A cynic might call it a puddle.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: badbear on September 22, 2016, 02:51:11 PM
Interesting that we've got some personal experience with this problem. It's all anecdotes, but at the same time, just because you didn't work on any puddle restoration/regulation doesn't mean it didn't happen.

Did you look at any of the court cases linked to the in that CATO article? In the Koontz case, these were people developing private property that were in some cases being required by government to improve completely unrelated government property, not doing whatever they wanted with public property.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: FINate on September 22, 2016, 03:16:58 PM
This thread has devolved into ridiculous semantic arguments.

I don't think it has.

What is a free market and does it include extreme examples like slavery, or selling children, or munitions? Can libertarians support X? IMO these are more about defining labels and staking out ideologies...semantics. People are free to explore this all they want, I don't find it particularly enlightening. To each their own I guess.

Quote
From an economic point of view a free market (http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/free%20market) ("an economic market or system in which prices are based on competition among private businesses and not controlled by a government") is generally the most efficient and scalable way to organize an economy, though there are exception to this (natural monopolies as one example). However efficient, free markets are amoral and unconcerned with ethical or moral outcomes. This is why we have regulation and government intervention in the market.

Right.  We're in 100% agreement.  Now let's discuss what government intervention and regulation we should have in the market (ala your final sentence I quoted) which makes it no longer 100% free, but for good reason.

Like, you say now you're in favor of less regulation, 100 years ago you'd have been in favor of more.

What do you want regulated less?  Why?

EDIT:  Rather than just ask questions, I'll give an example of where I see government overreach in regulation.

I think the interstate commerce clause, and how it's been used to regulate pretty much everything, is *, and I think Wickard v. Filburn (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wickard_v._Filburn) is one of the worst Supreme Court decisions ever (tl;dr: Guy was growing his own crops to feed his own pigs, and was fined, and US Supreme Court ruled that yes, the government can regulate him because he was affecting commerce by NOT buying someone else's crops), which led to terrible government overexpansion.

I don't think this is just semantics, but segues into important discussion topics.

As I already mentioned, housing policy, though this is more of a state issue. I should add that it's not just regulation, it's intervention in general. US Federal interventions I think need to change/be reduced:
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Northwestie on September 22, 2016, 03:19:52 PM
Interesting that we've got some personal experience with this problem. It's all anecdotes, but at the same time, just because you didn't work on any puddle restoration/regulation doesn't mean it didn't happen.

Did you look at any of the court cases linked to the in that CATO article? In the Koontz case, these were people developing private property that were in some cases being required by government to improve completely unrelated government property, not doing whatever they wanted with public property.


No law is perfect and humans make mistakes.  But in the over 30 years of my work in the field I've seen much more private landowner and developer shady activity than incompetence from agencies.  The one irrigated field issues should have been a slam dunk - there are agricultural exemptions large enough to drive a combine thru. They should have hired my firm!!

And defining something as a "puddle" is interesting.  I've seen laypeople apply this to a 1/3 acre low quality wetland and a 40 acre very diverse wetland community.  Defining a wetland is not speculative or based on profession opinion.  There is a very detailed manual and regional guidance letters and supplements put together by the US Fish and Wildlife Service, EPA, and Corps of Engineers.  All wetlands must have the "triple parameters" a preponderance of wetland adapted plants, wetland hydrology, and hydric soils.  There is no guesswork.

I'd say these laws are working pretty well - except we are still losing wetland habitat in large chunks  https://www.epa.gov/wetlands/how-does-epa-keep-track-status-and-trends-wetlands-us

Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on September 22, 2016, 03:53:09 PM
Criminalization of drugs, including cannabis

Yeah, this one in particular seems like a slam dunk, no brainer.  US drug policy seems silly and rooted in puritanical ideals.
[/quote]
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: badbear on September 22, 2016, 04:03:14 PM
I've seen laypeople apply this to a 1/3 acre low quality wetland and a 40 acre very diverse wetland community.

This doesn't surprise me at all. The average person is pretty clueless when it comes to describing the natural environmental, doubly so if they think they can plead ignorance to avoid trouble.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: FINate on September 22, 2016, 05:38:46 PM
I've seen laypeople apply this to a 1/3 acre low quality wetland and a 40 acre very diverse wetland community.

This doesn't surprise me at all. The average person is pretty clueless when it comes to describing the natural environmental, doubly so if they think they can plead ignorance to avoid trouble.

Another example: http://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/article/Half-Moon-Bay-grapples-with-36-8-million-3234399.php This plot was not previously wetlands, it was created either through incompetence or intentionally by the city of Half Moon Bay because they didn't like the proposed development. I've heard enough of these stories to believe that something is broken here. Maybe there are regional differences to account for the divergent experiences?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Northwestie on September 22, 2016, 05:48:26 PM
There is nothing in this that warrants a problem with the CWA - but rather poor engineering on the part of the city that backed up water after the initial approval and before they denied the plan change - they blew it - they own it - especially after this.

The city had given tentative approval to a previous owner for the development but opposed the new plan, saying protected wetlands had appeared on the property. Keenan's trustee sued.

No one with common sense would argue that the city gets a pass on a problem they caused.  And this has nothing to do with the Section 404 of the CWA - rather it is a prime example of poor hydrologic engineering.

And I could easily find loads of shady stories like this:

The indictment describes a scheme to illegally fill wetlands situated on a 96-acre parcel sitting upstream from Tonawanda and Ransom Creeks. As alleged in the indictment, the defendants purchased the property with the intent of commercially developing the site and were aware of the presence of the wetlands at the time of that purchase. After the purchase, and despite knowing that wetlands were present, the defendants, and others acting at the defendants’ direction, filled a portion of these wetlands by installing both a roadway and a “fill pad” on the site.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: MVal on September 22, 2016, 06:09:46 PM
Is anyone a liberal libertarian librarian in Liberia? If so, I lift my libation to you.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on September 22, 2016, 06:24:58 PM
Is anyone a liberal libertarian librarian in Liberia? If so, I lift my libation to you.

You're going to regret having replied to this thread just to post a throwaway joke when it grows to 20+ pages and keeps popping up in your unread posts.

But it was a good joke.  :D
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: FINate on September 22, 2016, 07:54:14 PM
Agreed, the city screwed up. You're right that this may not be CWA related, but rather wetland status under "state coastal regulations." In any case, IMO this is overreach by government. This land was an empty lot within the city, and surrounded by other developments, a prime candidate for urban infill. The irony is that limiting development in cities (the man made drainage ditch I mentioned earlier was also within a city) is keeping already impacted areas from developing higher density thereby pushing growth to areas like California's Central Valley - a terrible commute to jobs in the Bay Area and an area with a large amount of wetlands.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: MVal on September 23, 2016, 08:50:31 AM
Is anyone a liberal libertarian librarian in Liberia? If so, I lift my libation to you.

You're going to regret having replied to this thread just to post a throwaway joke when it grows to 20+ pages and keeps popping up in your unread posts.

But it was a good joke.  :D

It's okay, I had already replied to it a couple weeks ago anyway!
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: WilliamWallace on October 14, 2016, 10:32:45 AM
I am...and define that identification as a social liberal (do whatever you want so long as it does not harm <a 'microaggression' is not harm> anyone else) and a fiscal conservative (simply - have a balanced budget with as little gov't as necessary).

Sad thing is that I think many more Americans feel similarly, but the libertarians are unable to articulate their views.  Some gradualism is necessary - promising to end the Fed, abandon foreign bases, shut down 1/2 of gov't agencies, etc is too scary to too many people.

In the old days, Blue Dog Democrats or moderate GOP would probably fit this bill....but now all we have are the extremes.  Sad.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: robartsd on October 14, 2016, 01:45:21 PM
I am...and define that identification as a social liberal (do whatever you want so long as it does not harm <a 'microaggression' is not harm> anyone else) and a fiscal conservative (simply - have a balanced budget with as little gov't as necessary).

Sad thing is that I think many more Americans feel similarly, but the libertarians are unable to articulate their views.  Some gradualism is necessary - promising to end the Fed, abandon foreign bases, shut down 1/2 of gov't agencies, etc is too scary to too many people.

In the old days, Blue Dog Democrats or moderate GOP would probably fit this bill....but now all we have are the extremes.  Sad.
I think that there are different views on what constitutes "harm" and what gov't is "necessary". While some libertarians may have difficulty articulating their views, I think the broader problem most money spent in politics is from special interests that are opposed to libertarian ideals being applied in their area of interest.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Libertea on October 14, 2016, 04:20:58 PM
I just checked a book out of the library called "Dark Money" that is apparently an "expose'" on the Koch brothers and all the "right extremist" funding they do.  I'm guessing from the title and jacket blurb that it's not going to be very complimentary.  ;-)
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Classical_Liberal on October 14, 2016, 08:08:32 PM
I just checked a book out of the library called "Dark Money" that is apparently an "expose'" on the Koch brothers and all the "right extremist" funding they do.  I'm guessing from the title and jacket blurb that it's not going to be very complimentary.  ;-)

Excellent! I look forward to a review from a fellow Gen X rebel & individualist!

I came across this podcast on another forum.  It's an interview with Neil Howe, who wrote "The Fourth Turning". 

http://www.artofmanliness.com/2016/09/20/podcast-236-generational-cycle-theory-can-tell-us-present-age/

His book is next on my list.  Never heard of him before (slightly surprising after hearing the material), but he has some pretty interesting theories on history and generational social interplay that repeats.  His theory is very relevant to why Gen X'ers tend towards individual freedom/libertarian and Millennials tend towards a sacrifice for good of the group/democrat type of group think.  Check out the podcast if interested.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Radagast on October 14, 2016, 09:03:58 PM
To paraphrase some earlier conversation in terms of engineering speak, imagine a discussion about the best way to put water in a water tank:

"It's best to always let water flow down hill..."
"Well that's stupid, my house isn't at the bottom of the hill."
"Ok, but in general letting the water flow downhill for most of the distance increases efficiency."
"But you said it's best to always let water flow down hill which is wrong! My house isn't at the bottom of the hill and besides my water tank is ten feet high and if the water ran out of that I wouldn't have any water!!!"

It's easy to state a general principle, but making it function in the real world is where all the work comes in.

(Degrees in civil engineering and political science. (;  )

Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Libertea on October 14, 2016, 10:33:40 PM
I just checked a book out of the library called "Dark Money" that is apparently an "expose'" on the Koch brothers and all the "right extremist" funding they do.  I'm guessing from the title and jacket blurb that it's not going to be very complimentary.  ;-)

Excellent! I look forward to a review from a fellow Gen X rebel & individualist!

I came across this podcast on another forum.  It's an interview with Neil Howe, who wrote "The Fourth Turning". 

http://www.artofmanliness.com/2016/09/20/podcast-236-generational-cycle-theory-can-tell-us-present-age/

His book is next on my list.  Never heard of him before (slightly surprising after hearing the material), but he has some pretty interesting theories on history and generational social interplay that repeats.  His theory is very relevant to why Gen X'ers tend towards individual freedom/libertarian and Millennials tend towards a sacrifice for good of the group/democrat type of group think.  Check out the podcast if interested.
Nice.  Thanks.  I'm adding that book to my list. 

Have any of you read Gary Johnson's new ebook?  They don't have it at my library, and I already know I'm voting for him anyway, which kind of makes me reluctant to pay $10 to get it off amazon.  But I'd consider it if one of you thinks it's worth it.

ETA: I'm most of the way through another interesting book by Michael Shermer called "The Moral Arc."  I hadn't realized he was libertarian-leaning until I started reading this book. But it's not actually about libertarianism per se so much as him arguing that the world is steadily becoming freer and more moral over time.  Good read.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: aperture on October 14, 2016, 10:54:11 PM
US drug policy seems silly and rooted in puritanical ideals.

I suspect US drug policy was initially rooted in racism and since the early 1970s has become rooted in itself. It is now one of the arms of the military industrial complex that has become self-perpetuating.

Personally, I do not have a political ideology that I would not betray for pragmatic improvement in the life of people and the planet. I do not believe in big Government or little Government, but I do believe that the arguing over these concepts is the shell game that makes us forget to fight back against the corruption that robs us daily.  -aperture
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: robartsd on October 17, 2016, 08:30:59 AM
ETA: I'm most of the way through another interesting book by Michael Shermer called "The Moral Arc."  I hadn't realized he was libertarian-leaning until I started reading this book. But it's not actually about libertarianism per se so much as him arguing that the world is steadily becoming freer and more moral over time.  Good read.
Many in the US (particularly those who identify with libertarianism) do not feel that their world is becoming freer. However, the majority of the earth's population enjoys less freedom than american citizens, but generally freedom is increasing in the areas in which they live.

I do not believe in big Government or little Government, but I do believe that the arguing over these concepts is the shell game that makes us forget to fight back against the corruption that robs us daily.
Very good point.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Mississippi Mudstache on October 17, 2016, 09:07:52 AM
Many in the US (particularly those who identify with libertarianism) do not feel that their world is becoming freer.

Perhaps that indicates that there aren't many gay, black, female libertarians?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: robartsd on October 17, 2016, 11:01:38 AM
Many in the US (particularly those who identify with libertarianism) do not feel that their world is becoming freer.

Perhaps that indicates that there aren't many gay, black, female libertarians?
While I see your point on how homosexual (or transgender) people in the USA would feel their world is becoming freer; I don't see reason black people or women would feel any freer in the USA than they felt 10 years ago. In any case, libertarian ideals are not opposed to civil liberties.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: BTDretire on October 17, 2016, 12:09:43 PM
Sometimes phrases mean something beyond the combination of the dictionary definitions of the words in the phrase. Free market does not mean murder for hire is ok. That's pretty much never been the definition intended by anyone that's used the phrase other then people trying to establish a straw an to attack.

I absolutely agree that sometimes phrases mean something beyond the combination of dictionary definitions of the words of the phrase.  I've noticed that it's not uncommon for a large number of people to incorrectly use a phrase.  That's why I've already provided a dictionary definition of the whole phrase 'Free Market' so there can be no confusion.  I can even provide a few more if you would like:

Free Market - an economic system in which prices and wages are determined by unrestricted competition between businesses, without government regulation or fear of monopolies. (http://www.dictionary.com/browse/free-market?s=t (http://www.dictionary.com/browse/free-market?s=t))

Restricting slavery is restricting competition in the market place.{/quote]

If you check closely, not a single definition of the phrase 'Free Market' prohibits selling people into slavery.  It is inconsistent to yell 'Free Market GOOD' and then argue for limiting slave trade by the government and against limiting the sale of say handguns by the government.  In both cases a 'Free Market' is being denied to the people.  You appear to want a limited market, limited to things that you personally feel should be allowed.
.

  I would argue that a 'Free Market' would need buyers that are free to earn an income and spend it getting the best value for it there earnings.
 Slavery would not be an option compatible with the term 'Free Market' in that sense.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on October 17, 2016, 12:39:00 PM
Sometimes phrases mean something beyond the combination of the dictionary definitions of the words in the phrase. Free market does not mean murder for hire is ok. That's pretty much never been the definition intended by anyone that's used the phrase other then people trying to establish a straw an to attack.

I absolutely agree that sometimes phrases mean something beyond the combination of dictionary definitions of the words of the phrase.  I've noticed that it's not uncommon for a large number of people to incorrectly use a phrase.  That's why I've already provided a dictionary definition of the whole phrase 'Free Market' so there can be no confusion.  I can even provide a few more if you would like:

Free Market - an economic system in which prices and wages are determined by unrestricted competition between businesses, without government regulation or fear of monopolies. (http://www.dictionary.com/browse/free-market?s=t (http://www.dictionary.com/browse/free-market?s=t))

Restricting slavery is restricting competition in the market place.{/quote]

If you check closely, not a single definition of the phrase 'Free Market' prohibits selling people into slavery.  It is inconsistent to yell 'Free Market GOOD' and then argue for limiting slave trade by the government and against limiting the sale of say handguns by the government.  In both cases a 'Free Market' is being denied to the people.  You appear to want a limited market, limited to things that you personally feel should be allowed.
.

  I would argue that a 'Free Market' would need buyers that are free to earn an income and spend it getting the best value for it there earnings.
 Slavery would not be an option compatible with the term 'Free Market' in that sense.

As long as you're only enslaving some people (not all), there is still going to be a free market where buyers are free to earn income and spend it on the best slaves for their earnings.  The slaves won't have money, and thus can't join the market . . . but poor people never have money, and thus can't join the market.  Is there a difference?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Libertea on October 20, 2016, 01:45:52 AM
Many in the US (particularly those who identify with libertarianism) do not feel that their world is becoming freer.

Perhaps that indicates that there aren't many gay, black, female libertarians?
I was going to say, here is the list of groups Shermer goes through as having better lives and opportunities now (both in the US and worldwide) than at any other point in human history: women, blacks, gays, and (possibly in the future) sentient animals.  To which I would add, Jews and other religious minorities, children, the impoverished, the disabled, and any other member of any other historically oppressed group that isn't a white, wealthy, landowning male (but was formerly considered the property of said white, wealthy, landowning males).  And he's right.  I'm female and descended from an ethnic minority.  If I had been born in 1875 instead of 1975, I would be unable to vote, unable to have attended college, unable to have my own career, unable to choose not to have children, unable to aspire to FI, and basically otherwise spending my life saying "how high" whenever some arranged husband of mine told me to jump.  I'm profoundly grateful that this is not the case.

On a somewhat completely different note, I am curious if any of you are knowledgeable about the negative income tax/minimum guaranteed income proposal as a method of promoting universal FI for all citizens.  Interestingly, the proponents of this idea stem from both ultra left like Robert Reich as well as ultra right like Milton Friedman.  I have to confess that the idea of enabling all people to achieve FI does excite and entice me.  In fact, I'm thinking this topic probably deserves its own thread since it's not specifically a libertarian issue.  I think I'm going to create one.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Jack on October 20, 2016, 05:09:38 AM
Sometimes phrases mean something beyond the combination of the dictionary definitions of the words in the phrase. Free market does not mean murder for hire is ok. That's pretty much never been the definition intended by anyone that's used the phrase other then people trying to establish a straw an to attack.

I absolutely agree that sometimes phrases mean something beyond the combination of dictionary definitions of the words of the phrase.  I've noticed that it's not uncommon for a large number of people to incorrectly use a phrase.  That's why I've already provided a dictionary definition of the whole phrase 'Free Market' so there can be no confusion.  I can even provide a few more if you would like:

Free Market - an economic system in which prices and wages are determined by unrestricted competition between businesses, without government regulation or fear of monopolies. (http://www.dictionary.com/browse/free-market?s=t (http://www.dictionary.com/browse/free-market?s=t))

Restricting slavery is restricting competition in the market place.{/quote]

If you check closely, not a single definition of the phrase 'Free Market' prohibits selling people into slavery.  It is inconsistent to yell 'Free Market GOOD' and then argue for limiting slave trade by the government and against limiting the sale of say handguns by the government.  In both cases a 'Free Market' is being denied to the people.  You appear to want a limited market, limited to things that you personally feel should be allowed.
.

  I would argue that a 'Free Market' would need buyers that are free to earn an income and spend it getting the best value for it there earnings.
 Slavery would not be an option compatible with the term 'Free Market' in that sense.

As long as you're only enslaving some people (not all), there is still going to be a free market where buyers are free to earn income and spend it on the best slaves for their earnings.  The slaves won't have money, and thus can't join the market . . . but poor people never have money, and thus can't join the market.  Is there a difference?

People aren't products, by definition. Period. End of story. Trying to pretend libertarians support slavery is slanderous and offensive, so cut it the fuck out!
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Rufus.T.Firefly on October 20, 2016, 05:58:57 AM
Sometimes phrases mean something beyond the combination of the dictionary definitions of the words in the phrase. Free market does not mean murder for hire is ok. That's pretty much never been the definition intended by anyone that's used the phrase other then people trying to establish a straw an to attack.

I absolutely agree that sometimes phrases mean something beyond the combination of dictionary definitions of the words of the phrase.  I've noticed that it's not uncommon for a large number of people to incorrectly use a phrase.  That's why I've already provided a dictionary definition of the whole phrase 'Free Market' so there can be no confusion.  I can even provide a few more if you would like:

Free Market - an economic system in which prices and wages are determined by unrestricted competition between businesses, without government regulation or fear of monopolies. (http://www.dictionary.com/browse/free-market?s=t (http://www.dictionary.com/browse/free-market?s=t))

Restricting slavery is restricting competition in the market place.{/quote]

If you check closely, not a single definition of the phrase 'Free Market' prohibits selling people into slavery.  It is inconsistent to yell 'Free Market GOOD' and then argue for limiting slave trade by the government and against limiting the sale of say handguns by the government.  In both cases a 'Free Market' is being denied to the people.  You appear to want a limited market, limited to things that you personally feel should be allowed.
.

  I would argue that a 'Free Market' would need buyers that are free to earn an income and spend it getting the best value for it there earnings.
 Slavery would not be an option compatible with the term 'Free Market' in that sense.

As long as you're only enslaving some people (not all), there is still going to be a free market where buyers are free to earn income and spend it on the best slaves for their earnings.  The slaves won't have money, and thus can't join the market . . . but poor people never have money, and thus can't join the market.  Is there a difference?

People aren't products, by definition. Period. End of story. Trying to pretend libertarians support slavery is slanderous and offensive, so cut it the fuck out!

+1

This thread has been derailed long enough by a semantics argument over the definition of a free market. There is literally no one here who supports slavery. Let's stop beating a dead (straw) horse. There are more interesting discussions to be had.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on October 20, 2016, 07:30:22 AM
People aren't products, by definition. Period. End of story. Trying to pretend libertarians support slavery is slanderous and offensive, so cut it the fuck out!

+1

This thread has been derailed long enough by a semantics argument over the definition of a free market. There is literally no one here who supports slavery. Let's stop beating a dead (straw) horse. There are more interesting discussions to be had.

Okay, so that example derailed it, but the point of there is no free markets, just choosing which restrictions we want, remains.

If the slavery one is bogus to you, fair enough, but are you okay with every other example?  Are you okay with nuclear bombs being sold to anyone, for example, because it's a completely free market?

What about someone who prefers you don't interfere in their economic activity of hiring a hit man.

You're going to claim all of these, and more, are straw men, but that's just a no true scotsman problem: whatever market activity we come up with that you don't like, you'll claim it's egregious and a straw man, and it wouldn't be allowed even in a true free market.

If you're okay with it (selling drugs, for example), you'll say it's fine (while others might say it was a straw man), but if you aren't, you'll claim of course it should be regulated, but it's still a free market.

A free market is allowing everything. Not you picking and choosing and calling it still free.

The point is, there is no one who wants a truly free market, it's just where we each draw the line.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Jack on October 20, 2016, 08:22:59 AM
If the slavery one is bogus to you, fair enough, but are you okay with every other example?  Are you okay with nuclear bombs being sold to anyone, for example, because it's a completely free market?

What about someone who prefers you don't interfere in their economic activity of hiring a hit man.

You write those to examples as if they are somehow equivalent, but they are not.

In the first example, you conflate owning a thing with using a thing. There is no problem with merely owning a weapon; using it to harm people is an entirely separate issue. Conversely, if we were to assume that ownership should be restricted based on the mere potential for something to be used to harm someone, then I would argue nobody should be allowed to own cars!

For all you know, the buyer of a nuclear weapon wants to display it in his museum or remove the plutonium to charge the time circuits in his DeLorean or put it to some other constructive use.

The second example is different because there is no real difference between hiring somebody to perform a service and performing the service yourself, and in this case the service itself is (similarly to slavery) invalid by definition because it inherently infringes upon somebody's rights.

In any case, there is a clear, bright-line distinction between what can be (categorically!) included in the definition of a free market and what can't: you simply ask "does selling this product or service inherently -- not merely potentially, depending on some factor unrelated to the sale itself -- directly infringe upon someone's rights?"
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on October 20, 2016, 08:44:42 AM
I don't know what the person is going to use the nuclear bomb for, and neither do you.

But that's none of our business, in a free market.  You're okay with a nuclear bomb being sold to anyone, then?

What about me hiring a company to rid myself of all this nuclear waste byproduct by dumping it somewhere--say, Antarctica, or the ocean?  You wouldn't interfere with that economic transaction, right?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on October 20, 2016, 08:50:37 AM
Let's not forget, in a completely free market, there are no consumer protections.

I can lie, cheat, etc.  Buyer beware.

I can claim anything I want about my product, and you can't regulate that via demanding truth on my labeling.  Scammers abound in a completely free market.

There are also no protections like Child Labor laws, or worker's rights.  If they're willing to be screwed over (even if they only do so because the alternative is to starve), * em.

I don't think you want a free market Jack.  You want one with less restrictions and regulations than what we have now. So do I.  But neither of us want a totally free market.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: robartsd on October 20, 2016, 09:05:15 AM
In the first example, you conflate owning a thing with using a thing. There is no problem with merely owning a weapon; using it to harm people is an entirely separate issue. Conversely, if we were to assume that ownership should be restricted based on the mere potential for something to be used to harm someone, then I would argue nobody should be allowed to own cars!
There are threads on this forum where people speculate that in the future we will not be allowed to own cars that we drive ourselves - only self-driving cars should be allowed.

I identify with libertarian philosophy and see the same bright line as Jack - the right to make, own, buy, or sale something is entirely different than the right to use that thing to cause harm.

Let's not forget, in a completely free market, there are no consumer protections.

I can lie, cheat, etc.  Buyer beware.

I can claim anything I want about my product, and you can't regulate that via demanding truth on my labeling.  Scammers abound in a completely free market.
No, it's easy enough to see that misrepresenting the truth is causing harm to others. That harm can be treated as a criminal offense.

There are also no protections like Child Labor laws, or worker's rights.  If they're willing to be screwed over (even if they only do so because the alternative is to starve), * em.
I agree that a libertarian free market would not have any child labor laws or other worker protections (except for worker safety). Private organizations (including voluntary labor unions and charities) would have every opportunity voluntarily assist these people from being forced to work under unfair employment agreements through free market activities.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on October 20, 2016, 09:10:34 AM
I agree that a libertarian free market would not have any child labor laws or other worker protections (except for worker safety).

Why are you interfering with my economic activity with your "worker safety" regulations?  I demand a free market.

If the worker is willing to enter into the employer-employee relationship of his own free will (despite not really having any alternatives--but, like you said, maybe some charity will take him up), that's our business, not yours.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Jack on October 20, 2016, 09:20:46 AM
I don't know what the person is going to use the nuclear bomb for, and neither do you.
economic transaction, right?

But that's none of our business, in a free market.  You're okay with a nuclear bomb being sold to anyone, then?

If I sell my car to somebody I don't know what they're going to use it for either. Maybe they'll use it as the getaway car in a bank robbery or run somebody over with it. Does that mean cars shouldn't be allowed to be bought and sold?

What about me hiring a company to rid myself of all this nuclear waste byproduct by dumping it somewhere--say, Antarctica, or the ocean?  You wouldn't interfere with that economic transaction, right?

Now you're trying to conflate the issue with the "tragedy of the commons." They need to be considered separately.

First of all, if we assume that dumping the waste in Antarctica or the ocean infringes on the rights of third parties, then the question is, are you hiring the company to dispose of the waste and specifically instructing them to do it in a way that causes harm, or are you hiring the company to dispose of the waste in general, and the company unilaterally decides to do it improperly? If the former, then the transaction is disallowed for the same reason hiring a hitman is; otherwise it's a perfectly valid transaction and any attempt to prevent that damage should be focused on the actions of the company afterward, not on the transaction.

The "tragedy of the commons" issue of whether dumping nuclear waste in the ocean infringes on the rights of third parties is more complicated, especially because you're expecting me to try to apply libertarian solutions within a non-libertarian legal framework. The trouble is that in once sense nobody "owns" the ocean, so nobody's rights of ownership are infringed. In another sense the oceans "belong to" everyone collectively, so everybody's rights are infringed. The Libertarian solution would be to assign ownership of the ocean (and every other "commons") to some entity, so that when the company tries to dump the waste into the ocean that entity can defend its rights (by suing the company for trespassing and/or vandalism, or by extracting payment in return for permission to dump, or whatever). The potential disadvantages of that solution are beyond the scope of this post.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: desertadapted on October 20, 2016, 09:23:38 AM
Do the libertarians on the feed have any actual government, at any point in the entire history of humankind, that you would hold up as your highest exemplar of libertarian ideals in practice?  I cannot think of any examples, but I'm not enough of a history buff for my lack of imagination to mean all that much.  The discussion seems quite esoteric, so I was curious about, you know, real life examples of a what a really libertarian society might look like in actual real life.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on October 20, 2016, 09:40:00 AM
I don't know what the person is going to use the nuclear bomb for, and neither do you.
economic transaction, right?

But that's none of our business, in a free market.  You're okay with a nuclear bomb being sold to anyone, then?

If I sell my car to somebody I don't know what they're going to use it for either. Maybe they'll use it as the getaway car in a bank robbery or run somebody over with it. Does that mean cars shouldn't be allowed to be bought and sold?

Quote
You're okay with a nuclear bomb being sold to anyone, then?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Jack on October 20, 2016, 09:41:02 AM
I don't think you want a free market Jack.  You want one with less restrictions and regulations than what we have now. So do I.  But neither of us want a totally free market.

Did I say I did?

(The answer is no. There is a difference between explaining a position and taking that position myself. Edit: in a Cathy-esqe manner, I will point out that I also did not say that I did not want it. I am clarifying that I have not taken a position either way.)

All I've been doing -- for the third (http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/off-topic/who-else-here-is-a-libertarian/msg1234558/#msg1234558) time (http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/off-topic/who-else-here-is-a-libertarian/msg1237406/#msg1237406) on three separate pages of the thread -- is refuting the false assumptions and piss-poor reasoning of people who appear to be repeatedly trying to demonize and slander all libertarians as "hat[eful] and bigot[ed]" (http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/off-topic/who-else-here-is-a-libertarian/msg1232536/#msg1232536) slavemongers!
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on October 20, 2016, 09:44:00 AM
(https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/9743562/icon_lol.gif)
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on October 20, 2016, 10:48:41 AM
Sometimes phrases mean something beyond the combination of the dictionary definitions of the words in the phrase. Free market does not mean murder for hire is ok. That's pretty much never been the definition intended by anyone that's used the phrase other then people trying to establish a straw an to attack.

I absolutely agree that sometimes phrases mean something beyond the combination of dictionary definitions of the words of the phrase.  I've noticed that it's not uncommon for a large number of people to incorrectly use a phrase.  That's why I've already provided a dictionary definition of the whole phrase 'Free Market' so there can be no confusion.  I can even provide a few more if you would like:

Free Market - an economic system in which prices and wages are determined by unrestricted competition between businesses, without government regulation or fear of monopolies. (http://www.dictionary.com/browse/free-market?s=t (http://www.dictionary.com/browse/free-market?s=t))

Restricting slavery is restricting competition in the market place.{/quote]

If you check closely, not a single definition of the phrase 'Free Market' prohibits selling people into slavery.  It is inconsistent to yell 'Free Market GOOD' and then argue for limiting slave trade by the government and against limiting the sale of say handguns by the government.  In both cases a 'Free Market' is being denied to the people.  You appear to want a limited market, limited to things that you personally feel should be allowed.
.

  I would argue that a 'Free Market' would need buyers that are free to earn an income and spend it getting the best value for it there earnings.
 Slavery would not be an option compatible with the term 'Free Market' in that sense.

As long as you're only enslaving some people (not all), there is still going to be a free market where buyers are free to earn income and spend it on the best slaves for their earnings.  The slaves won't have money, and thus can't join the market . . . but poor people never have money, and thus can't join the market.  Is there a difference?

People aren't products, by definition. Period. End of story.

By what definition?


Trying to pretend libertarians support slavery is slanderous and offensive, so cut it the fuck out!

I didn't say that libertarians support slavery.  I was arguing the opposite.  The fact that libertarians don't support slavery is proof that most libertarians don't support a free market (although they often claim to).
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Jack on October 20, 2016, 11:04:25 AM
People aren't products, by definition. Period. End of story.

By what definition?

I answered that a month ago (http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/off-topic/who-else-here-is-a-libertarian/msg1237498/#msg1237498). On that note, have you decided between supporting slavery and converting to veganism yet?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on October 20, 2016, 11:21:20 AM
People aren't products, by definition. Period. End of story.

By what definition?

I answered that a month ago (http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/off-topic/who-else-here-is-a-libertarian/msg1237498/#msg1237498). On that note, have you decided between supporting slavery and converting to veganism yet?

You didn't answer anything at all.  You typed 'Natural Rights' and then waved your hands around.

See post #196 (and a whole bunch others on page 4).

The error with your question about veganism lies in your presupposition that I adhere to your own personal philosophical framework.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Jack on October 20, 2016, 12:01:46 PM
People aren't products, by definition. Period. End of story.

By what definition?

I answered that a month ago (http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/off-topic/who-else-here-is-a-libertarian/msg1237498/#msg1237498). On that note, have you decided between supporting slavery and converting to veganism yet?

You didn't answer anything at all.  You typed 'Natural Rights' and then waved your hands around.

See post #196 (and a whole bunch others on page 4).

The error with your question about veganism lies in your presupposition that I adhere to your own personal philosophical framework.

The universe of potential philosophical frameworks can be divided into two groups: the group where the same rules apply to you and everyone else, and the group where the rules for you differ from the rules for everybody else. All possible philosophies in the first group must necessarily include a concept equivalent to the one often described as "natural rights" or "the golden rule", while all possible philosophies in the second group must necessarily devolve to "might makes right."

If whatever your philosophical framework is falls into the first group, then my argument forcing you to choose between slavery or veganism (or abandoning your claim equating people with animals) holds. If it falls into the second group then you have no inherent objection to violence and the only real reason you distinguish between violence against animals and violence against people is because you feel like doing so.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on October 20, 2016, 12:32:22 PM
People aren't products, by definition. Period. End of story.

By what definition?

I answered that a month ago (http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/off-topic/who-else-here-is-a-libertarian/msg1237498/#msg1237498). On that note, have you decided between supporting slavery and converting to veganism yet?

You didn't answer anything at all.  You typed 'Natural Rights' and then waved your hands around.

See post #196 (and a whole bunch others on page 4).

The error with your question about veganism lies in your presupposition that I adhere to your own personal philosophical framework.

The universe of potential philosophical frameworks can be divided into two groups: the group where the same rules apply to you and everyone else, and the group where the rules for you differ from the rules for everybody else. All possible philosophies in the first group must necessarily include a concept equivalent to the one often described as "natural rights" or "the golden rule", while all possible philosophies in the second group must necessarily devolve to "might makes right."

Can you list everything that you would consider to be a 'natural right' so that I can better understand your argument?

Certainly, the golden rule is not a good example for your point.  I might be into rough anonymous S&M . . . the golden rule would dictate that I should therefore assume everyone else is also, and assault them with knobby dildos.



If whatever your philosophical framework is falls into the first group, then my argument forcing you to choose between slavery or veganism (or abandoning your claim equating people with animals) holds.

Agreed.  If I believe in 'natural rights' and I believe that there is no difference between animals and people, this logic follows.



If it falls into the second group then you have no inherent objection to violence and the only real reason you distinguish between violence against animals and violence against people is because you feel like doing so.

No.  The error you're making is in assuming that anyone who doesn't believe in 'natural rights' automatically believes in "might makes right".  I don't think you can support this position logically, but I guess it depends on your answer to my question about what you define 'natural rights' to be.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Spork on October 20, 2016, 12:35:46 PM
People aren't products, by definition. Period. End of story. Trying to pretend libertarians support slavery is slanderous and offensive, so cut it the fuck out!

+1

This thread has been derailed long enough by a semantics argument over the definition of a free market. There is literally no one here who supports slavery. Let's stop beating a dead (straw) horse. There are more interesting discussions to be had.

Okay, so that example derailed it, but the point of there is no free markets, just choosing which restrictions we want, remains.


No... Pretty much every post in this thread is a derail.  I haven't counted, but I bet it's 10-1.  This was a "who else here is a libertarian" thread.  It's pretty much become the "you guys are stupid".  "No we are not, you are" thread. 

This is why we can't have nice things.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Jack on October 20, 2016, 01:19:23 PM
Can you list everything that you would consider to be a 'natural right' so that I can better understand your argument?

Certainly, the golden rule is not a good example for your point.  I might be into rough anonymous S&M . . . the golden rule would dictate that I should therefore assume everyone else is also, and assault them with knobby dildos.

No, your example is bad -- you're conflating a consensual act with a non-consensual one. The consent or lack thereof is the essential difference!

If you believe you need someone's consent to do something to them, and I ask you "why," then any possible answer would be some variation of "because they have natural rights."

But I guess you're right that the golden rule is a weaker condition, since it doesn't quite work if the set of things you would not like "done unto you" is the empty set. (i.e, if you're okay with being raped, or being murdered, or being imprisoned, or being censored, or being stolen from, etc.) I guess it's theoretically possible for someone who feels that way to exist, so congratulations, you found a[n unrealistic] counterexample.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: tonysemail on October 20, 2016, 01:43:10 PM
Do the libertarians on the feed have any actual government, at any point in the entire history of humankind, that you would hold up as your highest exemplar of libertarian ideals in practice?  I cannot think of any examples, but I'm not enough of a history buff for my lack of imagination to mean all that much.  The discussion seems quite esoteric, so I was curious about, you know, real life examples of a what a really libertarian society might look like in actual real life.

I'm not a libertarian, but I found the question interesting.
I'd also be interested in hearing the answer.

I couldn't really google an answer, but this guy asserts an opinion-
http://thelibertarianrepublic.com/has-a-libertarian-society-ever-existed/

other people say it doesn't matter and I'd agree with that.
https://fee.org/articles/why-are-there-no-libertarian-countries/


and here are some fun stories I ran across while searching.
a libertarian country scam in chile-
http://www.vice.com/read/atlas-mugged-922-v21n10

a micronation in europe-
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liberland
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on October 20, 2016, 05:18:00 PM
Can you list everything that you would consider to be a 'natural right' so that I can better understand your argument?

Certainly, the golden rule is not a good example for your point.  I might be into rough anonymous S&M . . . the golden rule would dictate that I should therefore assume everyone else is also, and assault them with knobby dildos.

No, your example is bad -- you're conflating a consensual act with a non-consensual one. The consent or lack thereof is the essential difference!

If you believe you need someone's consent to do something to them, and I ask you "why," then any possible answer would be some variation of "because they have natural rights."

But I guess you're right that the golden rule is a weaker condition, since it doesn't quite work if the set of things you would not like "done unto you" is the empty set. (i.e, if you're okay with being raped, or being murdered, or being imprisoned, or being censored, or being stolen from, etc.) I guess it's theoretically possible for someone who feels that way to exist, so congratulations, you found a[n unrealistic] counterexample.

Are you not able to list the natural rights you've referred to so often in this thread?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on October 20, 2016, 05:23:06 PM
People aren't products, by definition. Period. End of story. Trying to pretend libertarians support slavery is slanderous and offensive, so cut it the fuck out!

+1

This thread has been derailed long enough by a semantics argument over the definition of a free market. There is literally no one here who supports slavery. Let's stop beating a dead (straw) horse. There are more interesting discussions to be had.

Okay, so that example derailed it, but the point of there is no free markets, just choosing which restrictions we want, remains.


No... Pretty much every post in this thread is a derail.  I haven't counted, but I bet it's 10-1.  This was a "who else here is a libertarian" thread.  It's pretty much become the "you guys are stupid".  "No we are not, you are" thread. 

This is why we can't have nice things.

Naturally a thread about a thing involves discussing the thing itself.

Do you literally want a roll call?  Like, the question is "who is an X" and the ONLY replies allowed is the word "me" with no qualifications, discussions, etc?  Anyone who posts anything other than the word "me" has their post edited down to trim it to that, or deleted, if it's not equivalent to that?

So it's just a roll call of "Who is an X?"  "Me." "Me."  "Me."

What would be the point of that thread?  To gather a list of people to spam?

You're right that 90% of the posts go beyond that, to real discussion, because that's what a discussion entails.

I consider myself a libertarian, but I still like to discuss the concepts around it.  I'd love it if we could reach a consensus that we each want the market less constrained, and talk about, among fellow libertarians, which constraints we do want, or don't want, and why.  We're not at that initial consensus yet, obviously, needed to kick off that discussion.

But I don't agree with your idea of "this is why we can't have nice things" because we're discussing libertarianism, the topic of the thread, rather than just saying "me".
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Northwestie on October 20, 2016, 05:30:23 PM
But I don't agree with your idea of "this is why we can't have nice things" because we're discussing libertarianism, the topic of the thread, rather than just saying "me".

..............and it is the interwebs after all.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Rufus.T.Firefly on October 20, 2016, 06:39:38 PM
So agreed: no one here, including libertarians, wants a truly free market. That is, one with total deregulation.

I like your idea ARS, so to kick things off here is my general view of what constitutes a good, well-regulated, free(ish) market:

1) Adam Smith's invisible hand concept will meet the vast majority of market needs and create an incredible amount of cohesion and efficiency in the economy.

But, the free market will create the following problems which must be regulated by a government.

2) Protect individual rights of freedom, property ownership, etc.

3) Protect against Tragedy of Commons issues such as environmental destruction

4) Protect public interests relating to consumer safety - i.e. food safety, vehicle inspections

5) Protect against monopolies/collusion for efficient markets in which collusion or monopolies creates price gouging (e.g. oil production)

6) Promote monopolies in highly inefficient markets in which monopolies encourage fairer pricing (e.g. utilities)

7) Promote innovation and technological development in areas where there is no current economic benefit and therefore no private research and development

I think the U.S. government has engaged in some meddling activities outside this basic scope and I would like to see it reined in.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Telecaster on October 20, 2016, 06:53:27 PM
That's quite a good list Rufus.T.Firefly!   I could co-sign that.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on October 20, 2016, 07:52:54 PM
Great post Rufus!  Thanks for contributing!  :)
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Spork on October 21, 2016, 08:23:41 AM
People aren't products, by definition. Period. End of story. Trying to pretend libertarians support slavery is slanderous and offensive, so cut it the fuck out!

+1

This thread has been derailed long enough by a semantics argument over the definition of a free market. There is literally no one here who supports slavery. Let's stop beating a dead (straw) horse. There are more interesting discussions to be had.

Okay, so that example derailed it, but the point of there is no free markets, just choosing which restrictions we want, remains.


No... Pretty much every post in this thread is a derail.  I haven't counted, but I bet it's 10-1.  This was a "who else here is a libertarian" thread.  It's pretty much become the "you guys are stupid".  "No we are not, you are" thread. 

This is why we can't have nice things.

Naturally a thread about a thing involves discussing the thing itself.

Do you literally want a roll call?  Like, the question is "who is an X" and the ONLY replies allowed is the word "me" with no qualifications, discussions, etc?  Anyone who posts anything other than the word "me" has their post edited down to trim it to that, or deleted, if it's not equivalent to that?

So it's just a roll call of "Who is an X?"  "Me." "Me."  "Me."

What would be the point of that thread?  To gather a list of people to spam?

You're right that 90% of the posts go beyond that, to real discussion, because that's what a discussion entails.

I consider myself a libertarian, but I still like to discuss the concepts around it.  I'd love it if we could reach a consensus that we each want the market less constrained, and talk about, among fellow libertarians, which constraints we do want, or don't want, and why.  We're not at that initial consensus yet, obviously, needed to kick off that discussion.

But I don't agree with your idea of "this is why we can't have nice things" because we're discussing libertarianism, the topic of the thread, rather than just saying "me".

Not exactly what I meant.  I guess I had my tongue implanted too far in my cheek.

I like threads that promote positivism and inclusion. 

Libertarians discussing libertarianism:  that qualifies.  Long ridiculous pedantic posts about why libertarianism is stupid... doesn't.

For a moment, read back over this thread and make substitutions.  Change it from "who else here is a libertarian" to "who else here is a Christian?"  Now: Do you think it is meaningful or appropriate for an atheist (like myself) to pop in on the first page and hijack the entire thread with the logical problems with the Bible, the moral issues I have with the concept of god or how the Bible promotes slavery? 

To me, that is possibly worthy of a thread.*  But it is a troll in context.  The point would have been to find like minded people and discuss a topic.

--
*I say possibly.  But for me, it isn't.  Arguing with strangers over things that are likely core values does little to convince anyone of anything.  It usually just promotes divisiveness.  It radiates more heat than light.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: LeRainDrop on October 21, 2016, 10:20:53 AM
For a moment, read back over this thread and make substitutions.  Change it from "who else here is a libertarian" to "who else here is a Christian?"  Now: Do you think it is meaningful or appropriate for an atheist (like myself) to pop in on the first page and hijack the entire thread with the logical problems with the Bible, the moral issues I have with the concept of god or how the Bible promotes slavery? 

This is probably a bad example.  Based on the outcomes of most other threads that mention Christianity, there are many MMM forum members who would think it is appropriate to hijack and castigate.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: robartsd on October 21, 2016, 10:29:44 AM
I agree that government should be organized for many of the things Rufus.T.Firefly indicates.

Certainly their should be criminal laws for purpose #2. From a libertarian perspective, this is the primary function of government.

I'd like to see purpose #3 enforced primarily through taxation - let the free market optimize away the Tragedy of the Commons.

#4 could mostly be accomplished without government (3rd party organizations setting/verifying standards). Government would of course be involved in cases where parties make false claims. Government could also require certain product categories that fail to meet certain standards carry an explicit consumer warning without banning the products.

I don't see a good way to reconcile anti-trust laws (#5 and #6) with libertarian philosophy but I do agree that they can be valuable. I'd prefer a society where non-profit cooperatives meet the need for infrastructure intensive utilities rather than government regulation of for-profit companies. Do roads and fire-fighting services fit in with utilities, or are those additional categories for government to handle?

I'm not sure that I agree that government involvement in #7 is needed. I'd rather see such research funded by private donation rather than tax collection.


Rufus.T.Firefly made no mention of public education and welfare assistance, but I think many people believe that these should also be provided by government. I'd like to think that these could be funded by private donation as I suggest research should, but I also recognize that failure here is a more critical problem than failing to fund research.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Classical_Liberal on October 21, 2016, 11:54:13 AM
Regarding #7, public education and welfare assistance...  Some libertarians may argue the reason gov't is (currently) needed to fund these things is due to the short sightedness of citizens and corporate leadership.  The same may be said for infrastructure spending (ie utilities).  We reward companies, people and CEO's for making the quick buck, without regard to 5, 10 or 100 years from now.  Is this human nature and a failing of free market? or is this sociological and malleable? 

I would argue excess regulation has created the environment in which megacorps are given an extremely large competitive advantage (they are the only ones with the capital to meet regulatory requirements) and this exacerbates the problem.  Individuals, smaller, local, or regional companies tend to have more foresight and vested interest in the long term success of local education, infrastructure and even potentially pure research for the benefit of local society. They also tend to be leaner and more efficient.  Perhaps we are seeing a problem of scale as well?

In any event, the main reason libertarianism seems to have a problem gaining traction is the subscriber's (us) are not willing enough to comprise on the fundamental principles. IOW, we are all or nothing.  This doesn't have to be the case, as Rufus T. Firefly has so thoughtfully pointed out. Any switch to more free market ideals SHOULD be slow and methodical with each potential change analyzed with the greater good in mind.  Focus on one change each election cycle, if there are positive results move on to the next.  Marijuana legalization is no longer an "extremist" view... so whats next? :)
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on October 26, 2016, 02:04:26 PM
Sounds like Bill Weld is urging people to vote for Hillary?

https://www.johnsonweld.com/statement_by_gov_bill_weld_regarding_the_final_weeks_election
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Spork on October 26, 2016, 03:12:01 PM
Sounds like Bill Weld is urging people to vote for Hillary?

https://www.johnsonweld.com/statement_by_gov_bill_weld_regarding_the_final_weeks_election

I found that nicely written.

The way I read it was "Vote for us if you will.  Vote for anyone but Trump otherwise or we'll all be sorry."  ... or something like that.  Not Hillary per se, but "Please: anyone but him."
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on November 02, 2016, 07:22:57 PM
Gary Johnson   ...(funny)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ktz40P1SS8Q
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: beel on November 03, 2016, 12:39:15 PM
I consider myself Libertarian.  Just answering the OP's question.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Kris on November 03, 2016, 01:15:07 PM
I just read this article on Gary Johnson in the Atlantic. Pretty good.

http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2016/10/no-not-gary-johnson/502718/?utm_source=atlfb
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on November 03, 2016, 06:12:37 PM
I just read this article on Gary Johnson in the Atlantic. Pretty good.

http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2016/10/no-not-gary-johnson/502718/?utm_source=atlfb

The second half was really good, and a strong argument against him.

I wish they didn't blow out a lot of credibility with that first part, which was just FUD.

I generally like the Atlantic, but the initial attacks on him as a person, rather than on his policy (as it became later) were stupid.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: MVal on November 03, 2016, 10:01:38 PM
I just saw Governor Weld speak at a small rally tonight in my city. It was great to meet and listen to someone who actually cares about the Constitution.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Libertea on November 06, 2016, 08:41:20 PM
I just checked a book out of the library called "Dark Money" that is apparently an "expose'" on the Koch brothers and all the "right extremist" funding they do.  I'm guessing from the title and jacket blurb that it's not going to be very complimentary.  ;-)

Excellent! I look forward to a review from a fellow Gen X rebel & individualist!
So I've read the book, and of course it's pretty biased from a liberal perspective.  (The author, Jane Mayer, is a liberal journalist who was apparently targeted by the Kochs for a smear campaign after writing an article about them that was less than flattering.)  My takeaway from it is this: it's hard to argue her point that the billions of dollars that Koch and other billionaires are pouring into politics is not a corrupting influence.  Of course it is.  All money corrupts, and absolute money corrupts absolutely.  That is equally true whether the corrupting influences come from the right or the left.  Since she's a lefty, she focuses on the right wingers, and she does a good job of showing the trail of mayhem caused by their money. 

But I would take her argument one step further: it is also hard to argue the point that many of these people are the same exact players, since big government and big business have a significant revolving door between them.  So she's right: if you don't trust big government, why would you trust big business?  But also the reverse: if you don't trust big business, why would you trust big government?  Neither one is interested in maximizing the personal liberty of individual citizens.

As I alluded to before, I am definitely coming around to the viewpoint that in order to maximize personal liberty, it is also necessary to maximize economic liberty.  In other words, to divorce work from earning a living, such as by having a basic minimum income for all.  People who need to work are at the mercy of powerful interests from both the left and the right (bosses, unions, etc) who seek to control them.  And unless you have the ability to leave your job, at any time, for any reason, i.e., to vote with your feet, can you truly be free?  I am excited about achieving FI not because I care about the money itself per se, but because I care about being able to have that freedom to not be dependent upon a job or an employer.  Having "FU money" and therefore being able to resist my most recent boss's attempt to bully me into staying at a job I wanted to quit was a real eye-opener for me.  In an ideal world, everyone should have that ability and that power.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on November 06, 2016, 10:04:00 PM
I like your conclusions, LT.  Very insightful.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Classical_Liberal on November 07, 2016, 01:12:45 PM
I just checked a book out of the library called "Dark Money" that is apparently an "expose'" on the Koch brothers and all the "right extremist" funding they do.  I'm guessing from the title and jacket blurb that it's not going to be very complimentary.  ;-)

Excellent! I look forward to a review from a fellow Gen X rebel & individualist!
So I've read the book, and of course it's pretty biased from a liberal perspective.  (The author, Jane Mayer, is a liberal journalist who was apparently targeted by the Kochs for a smear campaign after writing an article about them that was less than flattering.)  My takeaway from it is this: it's hard to argue her point that the billions of dollars that Koch and other billionaires are pouring into politics is not a corrupting influence.  Of course it is.  All money corrupts, and absolute money corrupts absolutely.  That is equally true whether the corrupting influences come from the right or the left.  Since she's a lefty, she focuses on the right wingers, and she does a good job of showing the trail of mayhem caused by their money. 

But I would take her argument one step further: it is also hard to argue the point that many of these people are the same exact players, since big government and big business have a significant revolving door between them.  So she's right: if you don't trust big government, why would you trust big business?  But also the reverse: if you don't trust big business, why would you trust big government?  Neither one is interested in maximizing the personal liberty of individual citizens.

As I alluded to before, I am definitely coming around to the viewpoint that in order to maximize personal liberty, it is also necessary to maximize economic liberty.  In other words, to divorce work from earning a living, such as by having a basic minimum income for all.  People who need to work are at the mercy of powerful interests from both the left and the right (bosses, unions, etc) who seek to control them.  And unless you have the ability to leave your job, at any time, for any reason, i.e., to vote with your feet, can you truly be free?  I am excited about achieving FI not because I care about the money itself per se, but because I care about being able to have that freedom to not be dependent upon a job or an employer.  Having "FU money" and therefore being able to resist my most recent boss's attempt to bully me into staying at a job I wanted to quit was a real eye-opener for me.  In an ideal world, everyone should have that ability and that power.

Thanks  for the review Libertea! 

Regarding your conclusions.  On a personal level, the single largest reason for achieving FI is freedom from dependency.  This naturally allows one to execute actions that are truly in line with personal ideals/morals. Still, even being FI, I will not be completely free as I'll be dependent on a stable system.  Although the degree may be different, I will still have to weigh choices that could potentially harm my personal wealth/income generating abilities, yet be positive step forwards for our culture.  Such delimias are likely a permanent part of the human condition.

Edit: I got interrupted

From a systemic standpoint, my greatest fear with UBI is that it will result in the exact opposite effect you predict.  Those who receive it now being dependent on one large Gov't vs many smaller organizations (employers) for basic needs.  If managed improperly, suddenly those receiving UBI could be at the whim of the majority political, social and moral winds.  At least with the current system we always have a choice to change employers (sometimes at a sacrifice). 

Sorry to hear about your boss!  I cant wait to hear the juicy details of your rebellion!!   2016 is almost gone, how much longer till your freedom?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Libertea on November 08, 2016, 07:16:59 AM
There is always a risk of abuse of power regardless of who holds it.  This is the problem with allowing too much power to be concentrated anywhere, whether public (government) or private (large corporations).  Not to mention (again) that many of the fat cats involved are the same people in both contexts.  While I agree in principle that it makes sense to have multiple potential sources of income rather than just one centralized one, in practice it may not be practical.  In the not too distant future, the uber drivers and cashiers of the world are going to lose their jobs, because the cars will drive themselves and we will self-check our groceries.  It's already happening.  So it's when, not if.  Even professionals like lawyers and doctors will get replaced eventually.  We already have computers that can beat chess grandmasters.  Again, it's when, not if.

So the question is, when we reach the point where most of us aren't needed to labor to run the economy, then what?  I would hope that this would allow us to have an economy where people could all afford to follow their passions and do whatever "work" (whether paid or unpaid) they find meaningful.  The MBI would allow them to live, and it has to be administered by someone in a uniform way.  This could not likely be done by a hodgepodge of private companies even if we desired that, since they would need some mechanism for collecting the funds.  Government does have a power to levy taxes on the entire population, and this therefore seems to be a reasonable task to ask of government.  I don't think you or anyone else here is looking to argue that there should be no government at all, merely that that government should be smaller, and it should perform limited, carefully delineated functions.  Ensuring that everyone has a minimum income is one possible example.  Those who want to do whatever paid work of the future is needed and available are of course welcome to do that to earn extra income.

I have 7.5 weeks left to go.  Not that I'm counting. ;-)
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: libertarian4321 on November 08, 2016, 01:37:59 PM
I voted for Libertarian Gary Johnson.

It felt GREAT to vote for a decent human being, rather than the vile offerings presented by the major parties.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Mississippi Mudstache on November 08, 2016, 01:44:49 PM
I voted for Libertarian Gary Johnson.

No kidding? You were really waffling over the past few months- I'm surprised to hear that you weren't swayed by the major-party candidates.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: sol on November 08, 2016, 01:52:47 PM
I voted for Libertarian Gary Johnson.

No kidding? You were really waffling over the past few months- I'm surprised to hear that you weren't swayed by the major-party candidates.

Har de har har.

Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Cwadda on November 08, 2016, 03:59:34 PM
I voted for Libertarian Gary Johnson.

It felt GREAT to vote for a decent human being, rather than the vile offerings presented by the major parties.

I also voted for Gary Johnson. He is by far the candidate who would run the country in a way that makes me most comfortable. I may not agree with all the things in the Libertarian party...completely privatized education? That's a bad idea and would never happen anyway.

But the fact of the matter is that we have an incredibly flawed two-party system in this country and voting for Trump or Clinton doesn't help. Gary Johnson definitely won't get elected but at least my vote is going towards the cause of moving away from this horrible system.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: hoping2retire35 on November 08, 2016, 06:27:40 PM
I was looking at precint level voting last two years ago (governor race) and noticed a band of higher than usual 3rd party voting stretching from where I live and east for about 80-100 miles. Excited about looking again this time. If it is anything interesting Ill post.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Metric Mouse on November 08, 2016, 10:46:02 PM
I voted for Libertarian Gary Johnson.

It felt GREAT to vote for a decent human being, rather than the vile offerings presented by the major parties.

I also voted for Gary Johnson. He is by far the candidate who would run the country in a way that makes me most comfortable. I may not agree with all the things in the Libertarian party...completely privatized education? That's a bad idea and would never happen anyway.

But the fact of the matter is that we have an incredibly flawed two-party system in this country and voting for Trump or Clinton doesn't help. Gary Johnson definitely won't get elected but at least my vote is going towards the cause of moving away from this horrible system.

America will no doubt appreciate your vote.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Cwadda on November 09, 2016, 11:19:00 AM
I voted for Libertarian Gary Johnson.

It felt GREAT to vote for a decent human being, rather than the vile offerings presented by the major parties.

I also voted for Gary Johnson. He is by far the candidate who would run the country in a way that makes me most comfortable. I may not agree with all the things in the Libertarian party...completely privatized education? That's a bad idea and would never happen anyway.

But the fact of the matter is that we have an incredibly flawed two-party system in this country and voting for Trump or Clinton doesn't help. Gary Johnson definitely won't get elected but at least my vote is going towards the cause of moving away from this horrible system.

America will no doubt appreciate your vote.

My vote doesn't matter in Connecticut. It always goes democrat. I don't know how I would have voted if I lived in FL or PA. I'd be much more conflicted.

Not sure why I keep feeling the need to justify my voting with random strangers over the internet, but there you go.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: hoping2retire35 on November 09, 2016, 12:02:46 PM
looked at some precinct level data. a little disappointed with my libertarian brothers and sisters, not like trump wasn't going to win the state. Anywho,

http://www.gcgis.org/apps/greenvillejs/
(upper left)Maps->Layers->Map layers->(last) Political->Precinct(click)
 -Greenville 21(it is in the middle of the county (near the big one in the middle above I-85

Best precinct around, 8.2% Johnson, a few other precincts in greenville and neighboring counties got 5%+ but that is it. I thought there would be a string of 10%+ like there almost was in the governor race 2 years ago.

for those curious, I factored in stein too, Northwood, Devenger, and Greenville 10 were low 8%. 21 was 11%.

:(
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: TheGrimSqueaker on November 11, 2016, 10:03:28 AM
I prefer to think of myself as a Constitutional Anarchist. Because so many people are idiots who refuse to govern themselves, and because there really are things that work best when we cooperate, I've accepted that some government is a necessary evil, but not a source of leadership. It has to be kept in line by the people who pretend to be governed.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Metric Mouse on November 13, 2016, 07:45:51 PM
I voted for Libertarian Gary Johnson.

It felt GREAT to vote for a decent human being, rather than the vile offerings presented by the major parties.

I also voted for Gary Johnson. He is by far the candidate who would run the country in a way that makes me most comfortable. I may not agree with all the things in the Libertarian party...completely privatized education? That's a bad idea and would never happen anyway.

But the fact of the matter is that we have an incredibly flawed two-party system in this country and voting for Trump or Clinton doesn't help. Gary Johnson definitely won't get elected but at least my vote is going towards the cause of moving away from this horrible system.

America will no doubt appreciate your vote.

My vote doesn't matter in Connecticut. It always goes democrat. I don't know how I would have voted if I lived in FL or PA. I'd be much more conflicted.

Not sure why I keep feeling the need to justify my voting with random strangers over the internet, but there you go.

I would suggest that everyone vote for the candidate they support the most.  I would be unable to sleep at night if I did anything  else.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: beel on December 31, 2016, 12:14:23 PM
I prefer to think of myself as a Constitutional Anarchist. Because so many people are idiots who refuse to govern themselves, and because there really are things that work best when we cooperate, I've accepted that some government is a necessary evil, but not a source of leadership. It has to be kept in line by the people who pretend to be governed.

Took the words right out of my mouth.  Sadly when ever I expressed this viewpoint I am called an asshole.... 
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: MVal on January 23, 2017, 09:11:09 PM
Any libertarians care to chime in on the devaluation of our currency? I sometimes wonder if all this saving for retirement will bite me in the butt because the currency could crash. Are any of you investing in precious metals at all as a hedge?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: katsiki on January 23, 2017, 09:14:25 PM
Any libertarians care to chime in on the devaluation of our currency? I sometimes wonder if all this saving for retirement will bite me in the butt because the currency could crash. Are any of you investing in precious metals at all as a hedge?

I don't worry about it.  If that is a concern, I think we'll have bigger problems.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Kris on January 23, 2017, 09:38:07 PM
I can't see any evidence that libertarians, by definition, care about anything but their own self-interests.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: MVal on January 23, 2017, 09:44:54 PM
I can't see any evidence that libertarians, by definition, care about anything but their own self-interests.

Are Mustachians any different, by and large? We aren't seeking to have all our money distributed among the poor through taxation, we're here in this group because we want to secure our personal futures through wealth.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Kris on January 23, 2017, 09:56:10 PM
I can't see any evidence that libertarians, by definition, care about anything but their own self-interests.

Are Mustachians any different, by and large? We aren't seeking to have all our money distributed among the poor through taxation, we're here in this group because we want to secure our personal futures through wealth.

Yes, I think so. Part of the reason Pete wants to live frugally is to not destroy the planet. Because other people live here. I am completely fine with paying my taxes. I just choose to buy fewer things, which means I will be able to retire earlier. It also means I'm consuming fewer earth-wrecking products. I don't see that as not caring about others. On the contrary, I am limiting what I consume because I want others to not suffer.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Metric Mouse on January 23, 2017, 10:01:41 PM
I can't see any evidence that libertarians, by definition, care about anything but their own self-interests.

Are Mustachians any different, by and large? We aren't seeking to have all our money distributed among the poor through taxation, we're here in this group because we want to secure our personal futures through wealth.

And to consume consciously, so that we get the most joy out of our lives. It's entirely selfish, though it sometimes has the benefit of not hurting others in the process. But we still consume, still buy brand new cars that destroy the planet, still fly around the world spewing burned jet fuel into the atmosphere to take selfies by famous landmarks and blog about where we've been and where we are going. Very selfish, overall. And often we are smug about it too, which is annoying, though not directly detrimental to others.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: LeRainDrop on January 24, 2017, 12:38:02 AM
I can't see any evidence that libertarians, by definition, care about anything but their own self-interests.

I guess I'm not a pure libertarian, but I would disagree with this.  By preserving individual liberties, each person is free to voluntarily help whomever they want to help.  I'm a big believer in donating to charitable causes and being generous with other people when I can.  The point is that each person is not forced to give to others but can choose independently.  At least, that's how I see it.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on January 24, 2017, 12:47:33 AM
I can't see any evidence that libertarians, by definition, care about anything but their own self-interests.

I guess I'm not a pure libertarian, but I would disagree with this.  By preserving individual liberties, each person is free to voluntarily help whomever they want to help.  I'm a big believer in donating to charitable causes and being generous with other people when I can.  The point is that each person is not forced to give to others but can choose independently.  At least, that's how I see it.

(Emphasis added.)

Sure, your statement is true in a vacuum.  That doesn't make her statement false.

Each person is free to help others.  Yet she still has seen no evidence that libertarians care about anything but their own self-interest.

It's a broad generalization, so there are very likely some anecdotes that disprove it, but I wouldn't be surprised to find the overlap of the Venn diagram between "care only about their self-interest" and "libertarian" as quite large.

So pedantically, Kris is wrong.  In practice, I'd say there's more truth than most libertarians would want to admit.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: LeRainDrop on January 24, 2017, 01:31:07 AM
In practice, I'd say there's more truth than most libertarians would want to admit.

Maybe you're right, though that's not my personal experience.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on January 24, 2017, 02:20:15 AM
In practice, I'd say there's more truth than most libertarians would want to admit.

Maybe you're right, though that's not my personal experience.

I'm really glad to hear that, it gives me hope.  :)
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Spork on January 24, 2017, 07:08:27 AM
I can't see any evidence that libertarians, by definition, care about anything but their own self-interests.

Are Mustachians any different, by and large? We aren't seeking to have all our money distributed among the poor through taxation, we're here in this group because we want to secure our personal futures through wealth.

Yes, I think so. Part of the reason Pete wants to live frugally is to not destroy the planet. Because other people live here. I am completely fine with paying my taxes. I just choose to buy fewer things, which means I will be able to retire earlier. It also means I'm consuming fewer earth-wrecking products. I don't see that as not caring about others. On the contrary, I am limiting what I consume because I want others to not suffer.

For some of us: less pollution and more green nature is a selfish desire.  Not for other people.  For ME.

Often there is common ground even if the reasoning behind it differs.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on January 24, 2017, 07:33:38 AM
FWIW, I think that it's unreasonable to expect anyone to do anything that's not selfish in nature.

I support policies that aim to reduce poverty and end hunger because I feel that doing this will make the world nicer for me to live in.  I give to charity because it makes me feel good about myself.  I attempt to minimize waste and pollution that I generate in my life because leaving a greener planet for my son is something that will make me happy.

You can be completely selfish and still help the community around you.  The problem that I see with the Libertarian views of some is that they often skew towards selfish and detrimental to the greater community.  (I suspect that this comes from a rejection or misunderstanding of the tremendous interconnectedness that people living together as a society have with one another.)  My hope is that those who follow this path will eventually be able to find enjoyment in doing things that help others, and thus realign their selfishness to be of more benefit to society.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on January 24, 2017, 07:35:51 AM


FWIW, I think that it's unreasonable to expect anyone to do anything that's not selfish in nature.

I support policies that aim to reduce poverty and end hunger because I feel that doing this will make the world nicer for me to live in.  I give to charity because it makes me feel good about myself.  I attempt to minimize waste and pollution that I generate in my life because leaving a greener planet for my son is something that will make me happy.

You can be completely selfish and still help the community around you.  The problem that I see with the Libertarian views of some is that they often skew towards selfish and detrimental to the greater community.  (I suspect that this comes from a rejection or misunderstanding of the tremendous interconnectedness that people living together as a society have with one another.)  My hope is that those who follow this path will eventually be able to find enjoyment in doing things that help others, and thus realign their selfishness to be of more benefit to society.

I don't think my giving will make the world better, except for those people directly affected.

I don't think it will make it better for me personally.

YMMV, apparently.

Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: shenlong55 on January 24, 2017, 07:45:43 AM
FWIW, I think that it's unreasonable to expect anyone to do anything that's not selfish in nature.

I support policies that aim to reduce poverty and end hunger because I feel that doing this will make the world nicer for me to live in.  I give to charity because it makes me feel good about myself.  I attempt to minimize waste and pollution that I generate in my life because leaving a greener planet for my son is something that will make me happy.

You can be completely selfish and still help the community around you.  The problem that I see with the Libertarian views of some is that they often skew towards selfish and detrimental to the greater community.  (I suspect that this comes from a rejection or misunderstanding of the tremendous interconnectedness that people living together as a society have with one another.)  My hope is that those who follow this path will eventually be able to find enjoyment in doing things that help others, and thus realign their selfishness to be of more benefit to society.

+1
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Rufus.T.Firefly on January 24, 2017, 09:00:55 AM
I can't see any evidence that libertarians people, by definition, care about anything but their own self-interests.

FTFY :)
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: robartsd on January 24, 2017, 09:51:54 AM
You can be completely selfish and still help the community around you.  The problem that I see with the Libertarian views of some is that they often skew towards selfish and detrimental to the greater community.  (I suspect that this comes from a rejection or misunderstanding of the tremendous interconnectedness that people living together as a society have with one another.)
Libertarian philosophy (sometimes not the same as libertarian politics) is a rejection that the tremendous interconnectedness should be controlled by legal force rather than based solely on mutual choice. I think most libertarians believe in voluntarily contributing to their communities directly or through private charities rather than through taxation and government bureaucracy.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on January 24, 2017, 10:11:34 AM
So GoFundMe is the primary way for healthcare?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Gal2016 on January 24, 2017, 10:34:58 AM
You can be completely selfish and still help the community around you.  The problem that I see with the Libertarian views of some is that they often skew towards selfish and detrimental to the greater community.  (I suspect that this comes from a rejection or misunderstanding of the tremendous interconnectedness that people living together as a society have with one another.)
Libertarian philosophy (sometimes not the same as libertarian politics) is a rejection that the tremendous interconnectedness should be controlled by legal force rather than based solely on mutual choice. I think most libertarians believe in voluntarily contributing to their communities directly or through private charities rather than through taxation and government bureaucracy.

I think that Libertarians may be kind of "pie in the sky" types of people, who are genuinely good people who take care of their own lives and honestly think everyone else should, too. I applaud that sentiment! Yes, please.

Libertarians that I know are hard working individuals who just want to be left in peace to raise their kids, take care of their families, and assist their communities how they see fit -- sometimes with money, sometimes with things, and sometimes with service -- and sometimes not at all.  I think that's great!

The major problem that I see with Libertarianism just like Socialism (and most "isms") is that not all people are as hard working and self-governing and even as generous as everyone else.  We will always have that segment of society who do grossly irresponsible things (not save money, reckless & unhealthy behaviors).  In fact, a lot of people in a lot of different ways meet that criteria.  So, we have laws that help to enforce responsibility and avoid costly recklessness. Helmet and seatbelt laws, for example. Legalizing recreational marijuana is probably not a great idea -- altered mental states aren't safe in a variety of scenarios and it's far more difficult to determine if someone is "under the influence" of marijuana at the time of a workplace accident versus testing the blood-alcohol level of someone who is suspected of being drunk (but that's another topic). Anyway. If we could somehow ensure that people weren't doing stupid things that cost others' time/money/health/lives -- that would be great and I'd be all about everyone doing what they want.  It just doesn't work out that way in real life.  I'm for minimal government, as appropriate.  And that's why I can't be Libertarian, and fall pretty squarely in the Republican camp.  I could never be Democrat with the ideal that everyone "deserves" a grand lifestyle without necessarily having to sacrifice anything because "someone else" will be taxed (or earn) it for them.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: cheapass on January 24, 2017, 10:41:32 AM
Legalizing recreational marijuana is probably not a great idea -- altered mental states aren't safe in a variety of scenarios and it's far more difficult to determine if someone is "under the influence" of marijuana at the time of a workplace accident versus testing the blood-alcohol level of someone who is suspected of being drunk (but that's another topic).

Do you support bans on alcohol, caffeine, and other recreational drugs that cause altered behavior?

The current prohibition on marijuana doesn't exactly seem to be working, and costs you and me a shitload of money when you factor in law enforcement resources, attorneys, judges, prisons, etc. Not to mention it's not really my job to tell people what they can and can't consume.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Kris on January 24, 2017, 10:45:49 AM
I can't see any evidence that libertarians, by definition, care about anything but their own self-interests.

Are Mustachians any different, by and large? We aren't seeking to have all our money distributed among the poor through taxation, we're here in this group because we want to secure our personal futures through wealth.

Yes, I think so. Part of the reason Pete wants to live frugally is to not destroy the planet. Because other people live here. I am completely fine with paying my taxes. I just choose to buy fewer things, which means I will be able to retire earlier. It also means I'm consuming fewer earth-wrecking products. I don't see that as not caring about others. On the contrary, I am limiting what I consume because I want others to not suffer.

For some of us: less pollution and more green nature is a selfish desire.  Not for other people.  For ME.

Often there is common ground even if the reasoning behind it differs.

Sure, in part. But I'm fifty, and relatively well-off, and I live a comfortable life. And I don't have kids, so it's not about the extension of me, either. I don't really care about that stuff for me, because it won't really affect me in my lifetime. By the time the effects of climate change start to negatively affect the people where I live, I'll be dead. So no, in this case I'm not doing it for me.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: robartsd on January 24, 2017, 11:08:28 AM
The major problem that I see with Libertarianism just like Socialism (and most "isms") is that not all people are as hard working and self-governing and even as generous as everyone else.  We will always have that segment of society who do grossly irresponsible things (not save money, reckless & unhealthy behaviors).  In fact, a lot of people in a lot of different ways meet that criteria.
No disagreement there. Libertarians just believe that when a segment of society suffers the consequences of doing grossly irresponsible things (beyond the rest of society's willingness to voluntarily bail them out) it simply is the way it is.

So, we have laws that help to enforce responsibility and avoid costly recklessness. Helmet and seatbelt laws, for example. Legalizing recreational marijuana is probably not a great idea -- altered mental states aren't safe in a variety of scenarios and it's far more difficult to determine if someone is "under the influence" of marijuana at the time of a workplace accident versus testing the blood-alcohol level of someone who is suspected of being drunk (but that's another topic).
I believe is wearing seatbelts and helmets. I don't see how other people's choices on these matters affects me much. I believe in holding people accountable for what they do regardless of what drugs they may have been abusing that altered their mental state; being able to test for (thus blame) the drug is not relevant. I don't see a conflict between an employer's choice to prohibit and test for drug use and libertarian philosophy.

Anyway. If we could somehow ensure that people weren't doing stupid things that cost others' time/money/health/lives -- that would be great and I'd be all about everyone doing what they want.  It just doesn't work out that way in real life.  I'm for minimal government, as appropriate.  And that's why I can't be Libertarian, and fall pretty squarely in the Republican camp.  I could never be Democrat with the ideal that everyone "deserves" a grand lifestyle without necessarily having to sacrifice anything because "someone else" will be taxed (or earn) it for them.
I don't see how making certain things that are stupid to do (in many circumstances) illegal to do actually prevents people from doing stupid things. You've already stated that "We will always have that segment of society who do grossly irresponsible things". The libertarian ideal is a government that protects individual liberty from the abuse of others. It libertarian philosophy authorizes the government to use forceful action when an individual or group's actions infringe on the time/money/health/lives of others. I believe that by making some stupid/immoral things illegal we develop the dangerous idea that if it is not illegal it is OK to do, thus reducing individual responsibility to avoid doing irresponsible (legal) things.

While libertarian philosophy resonates strongly with me; I'm not always supportive of libertarian politics. I understand your political stance - I'd probably support the Republican Party too if I actually believed their limited government rhetoric; especially if they took a more libertarian approach to social issues as well.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: robartsd on January 24, 2017, 11:15:33 AM
Sure, in part. But I'm fifty, and relatively well-off, and I live a comfortable life. And I don't have kids, so it's not about the extension of me, either. I don't really care about that stuff for me, because it won't really affect me in my lifetime. By the time the effects of climate change start to negatively affect the people where I live, I'll be dead. So no, in this case I'm not doing it for me.
And you have no friends with children whose happiness you care about. You don't get a positive feeling for doing things that you think are positive for the greater good.

I agree with GuitarStv that people are basically motivated by self-interest; but that self-interest can be constructed to value others in a way that we have labeled not selfish. Just because your self-interest construct is more abstract than GuitarStv not wanting to ruin the world for his son does not make it less real.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Spork on January 24, 2017, 11:25:23 AM
I can't see any evidence that libertarians, by definition, care about anything but their own self-interests.

Are Mustachians any different, by and large? We aren't seeking to have all our money distributed among the poor through taxation, we're here in this group because we want to secure our personal futures through wealth.

Yes, I think so. Part of the reason Pete wants to live frugally is to not destroy the planet. Because other people live here. I am completely fine with paying my taxes. I just choose to buy fewer things, which means I will be able to retire earlier. It also means I'm consuming fewer earth-wrecking products. I don't see that as not caring about others. On the contrary, I am limiting what I consume because I want others to not suffer.

For some of us: less pollution and more green nature is a selfish desire.  Not for other people.  For ME.

Often there is common ground even if the reasoning behind it differs.

Sure, in part. But I'm fifty, and relatively well-off, and I live a comfortable life. And I don't have kids, so it's not about the extension of me, either. I don't really care about that stuff for me, because it won't really affect me in my lifetime. By the time the effects of climate change start to negatively affect the people where I live, I'll be dead. So no, in this case I'm not doing it for me.

Okay.  I'm over fifty and relatively well off and I live a comfortable life.  And I don't have kids.  And it's still for me. 
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: golden1 on January 24, 2017, 11:34:50 AM
My husband is a libertarian.  I would love to be a libertarian, but in general, I don't think it is workable.  I think people suck far too much for it to work properly.  I think we would see a lot more people dying on the streets.  I think tribalism would end up determining everything and there would be a lot of violence and suffering. 
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Gal2016 on January 24, 2017, 11:35:17 AM
The major problem that I see with Libertarianism just like Socialism (and most "isms") is that not all people are as hard working and self-governing and even as generous as everyone else.  We will always have that segment of society who do grossly irresponsible things (not save money, reckless & unhealthy behaviors).  In fact, a lot of people in a lot of different ways meet that criteria.
No disagreement there. Libertarians just believe that when a segment of society suffers the consequences of doing grossly irresponsible things (beyond the rest of society's willingness to voluntarily bail them out) it simply is the way it is.

But it's not "a segment of society", it ends up being individuals and their families (at the very least).

So, we have laws that help to enforce responsibility and avoid costly recklessness. Helmet and seatbelt laws, for example. Legalizing recreational marijuana is probably not a great idea -- altered mental states aren't safe in a variety of scenarios and it's far more difficult to determine if someone is "under the influence" of marijuana at the time of a workplace accident versus testing the blood-alcohol level of someone who is suspected of being drunk (but that's another topic).
I believe is wearing seatbelts and helmets. I don't see how other people's choices on these matters affects me much. I believe in holding people accountable for what they do regardless of what drugs they may have been abusing that altered their mental state; being able to test for (thus blame) the drug is not relevant. I don't see a conflict between an employer's choice to prohibit and test for drug use and libertarian philosophy.

Being "accountable" isn't going to bring back the health/life of someone who is harmed. I'm a nurse, I see the results of people doing stupid stuff, every day.  Sometimes it affects just them or their immediate family, but mostly it affects a vast array of others.

On a personal note, as someone who has been significantly (life alteringly) injured in an auto accident that was someone else's fault -- I don't care how "accountable" the law makes the other driver for his lack of car insurance and the fact that they gave him a ticket, or even how much (a pittance) I got from my own insurance. His careless driving has left me dealing with daily pain. Daily - 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, for the last decade....  the point being that in a whole lot of cases, there are no "take backs". I don't blame the poor kid. He should have been paying attention, sure. It was an accident... but what about all the INTENTIONAL stupid things people do that harm others? -- those are the things that I think need to be regulated.

Anyway. If we could somehow ensure that people weren't doing stupid things that cost others' time/money/health/lives -- that would be great and I'd be all about everyone doing what they want.  It just doesn't work out that way in real life.  I'm for minimal government, as appropriate.  And that's why I can't be Libertarian, and fall pretty squarely in the Republican camp.  I could never be Democrat with the ideal that everyone "deserves" a grand lifestyle without necessarily having to sacrifice anything because "someone else" will be taxed (or earn) it for them.
I don't see how making certain things that are stupid to do (in many circumstances) illegal to do actually prevents people from doing stupid things. You've already stated that "We will always have that segment of society who do grossly irresponsible things". The libertarian ideal is a government that protects individual liberty from the abuse of others. It libertarian philosophy authorizes the government to use forceful action when an individual or group's actions infringe on the time/money/health/lives of others. I believe that by making some stupid/immoral things illegal we develop the dangerous idea that if it is not illegal it is OK to do, thus reducing individual responsibility to avoid doing irresponsible (legal) things.

The thing is, that it does alter people's choices. Let's take helmet and seatbelt laws (controversial but high impact). Almost EVERYONE wears their seatbelt now. Seriously. It's ingrained. People don't feel safe if they get on a motorcycle without a helmet and hold others' accountable for wearing a helmet. I remember a time when nobody wore a seatbelt. And we were all up in arms about having to (when they first passed the laws).  It affects change.

On a side note, I know of a person who has been unresponsive, in a coma, on a ventilator and feeding tubes for over a decade due to not wearing his helmet while on a motorcycle. He's on medicaid, of course. Never woke up from the accident.

While libertarian philosophy resonates strongly with me; I'm not always supportive of libertarian politics. I understand your political stance - I'd probably support the Republican Party too if I actually believed their limited government rhetoric; especially if they took a more libertarian approach to social issues as well.

What kind of social issues are most dear to you? (just wondering)
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Kris on January 24, 2017, 11:35:32 AM
Sure, in part. But I'm fifty, and relatively well-off, and I live a comfortable life. And I don't have kids, so it's not about the extension of me, either. I don't really care about that stuff for me, because it won't really affect me in my lifetime. By the time the effects of climate change start to negatively affect the people where I live, I'll be dead. So no, in this case I'm not doing it for me.
And you have no friends with children whose happiness you care about. You don't get a positive feeling for doing things that you think are positive for the greater good.

I agree with GuitarStv that people are basically motivated by self-interest; but that self-interest can be constructed to value others in a way that we have labeled not selfish. Just because your self-interest construct is more abstract than GuitarStv not wanting to ruin the world for his son does not make it less real.

To be honest, Robertsd, when I think about climate change and its effects, the people I think about are complete abstractions. People across the world I've never met and never will meet, in countries who will see the most severe problems soonest, and who won't have the means to do anything about it. I almost never worry about anyone I know.

But if what you're trying to say is that basically anything we care about is for selfish reasons, then hey, follow your bliss.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: TheOldestYoungMan on January 24, 2017, 11:45:39 AM
I can't see any evidence that libertarians, by definition, care about anything but their own self-interests.

It was we, the people; not we, the white male citizens; nor yet we, the male citizens; but we, the whole people, who formed the Union. And we formed it, not to give the blessings of liberty, but to secure them; not to the half of ourselves and the half of our posterity, but to the whole people - women as well as men.
-Susan B. Anthony

There is a certain enthusiasm in liberty, that makes human nature rise above itself, in acts of bravery and heroism.
-Alexander Hamilton

It will be found an unjust and unwise jealousy to deprive a man of his natural liberty upon the supposition he may abuse it.
-George Washington

Arbitrary power is most easily established on the ruins of liberty abused to licentiousness.
-George Washington

It is easy to castigate those who abhor the unjust usurpation of power in the name of good things as being against good things, or proponents of selfish things, but it is a shallow and meaningless argument.  You are better than that.

A fight does not have to be in service to things that do not benefit the self to have worth.  That a libertarian argument is an argument for a situation which would benefit the libertarian does not disqualify it as an argument, or demean it in any way.  An argument for lower taxes for me is selfish, an argument for lower taxes for everyone is not.  An argument for government to leave me alone is selfish, an argument for government to leave everyone alone is not.

From the very beginning of the government of this country there has been a struggle between those that would use the power of government to secure liberty and those that would use the power of government to impose their own will on others.  It is a very different thing to say "this is harmful, we're going to tax it, because taxes reduce consumption" and "we don't like this, we're going to blame you for it, and tax you."

What is disconcerting to the libertarian is the two party system, where one party is the oppressor of social liberty (Conservative stance on social issues) and the other is the oppressor of economic liberty (Democratic stance on economic issues).  So it's a pick your poison kind of thing.  Being unpopular and rich makes you a target of Democrats, regardless of whatever environmental arguments they are couching their sentiments in this week, if oil companies were poor they'd receive exactly as much attention as paint companies.  The worst environmental record doesn't earn you a spot on the shit list, it has to be paired with success.

Likewise, it doesn't matter how successful and contributory you are, if you're not fucking the right kind of person you end up on the conservative shit list.

The libertarian argument is to strip away the ability of government to take actionable steps on these irrational grudges.  Sometimes a thing needs to be done, true.  But you can't argue that something like education can only be handled by government unless you attended a government school in the US where that's what you were taught.  There are advantages to such a system, true.  But a huge disadvantage is the lack of competition that allows an idea like "the private sector can't be trusted" to become a gospel truth.  Nothing can be trusted, people can't be trusted, regardless of the nature of their employer.  By all means have a public education system.  But don't set up a system where it is virtually impossible for a private education system to compete with that.  A good option doesn't need the defense of public policy, but most public school systems in the US survive only because of the mandatory participation imposed by the government.  There's a history behind how we got where we are, but it should concern you that the defense of public education is not the failure to provide adequate public education in less settled areas historically, rather the utter ignorance of most of those who were subjected to public education that there's any other way to do it.

It's called indoctrination.  It's called propaganda.  And public policy should be supported by other means.  What the libertarian sentimentality seeks to do, more than anything, in my opinion, is to point out that much of the current public policy debate centers not on the merits of an individual program or idea, but on the entrenched interests of those who rely on the existence of the public policy.  It can sound selfish to want to get rid of the tax on nose hair because "what about all those poor nose hair tax collectors?"  But it isn't selfish.  We don't need a tax on nose hair.

All you can do is limit the scope of the damage any one person can do.  Vast scope of massive agencies is antithetical to that.  Opposing the desires of a community to set up their own school, and pay for it with money they are paying towards a school they no longer want to participate in, that's selfish.  Opposing everyone keeping a little more of their hard-earned money to use for their own good causes so you can force them to spend it on things you think are better causes, that's selfish.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Kris on January 24, 2017, 11:54:36 AM
I can't see any evidence that libertarians, by definition, care about anything but their own self-interests.

It was we, the people; not we, the white male citizens; nor yet we, the male citizens; but we, the whole people, who formed the Union. And we formed it, not to give the blessings of liberty, but to secure them; not to the half of ourselves and the half of our posterity, but to the whole people - women as well as men.
-Susan B. Anthony

There is a certain enthusiasm in liberty, that makes human nature rise above itself, in acts of bravery and heroism.
-Alexander Hamilton

It will be found an unjust and unwise jealousy to deprive a man of his natural liberty upon the supposition he may abuse it.
-George Washington

Arbitrary power is most easily established on the ruins of liberty abused to licentiousness.
-George Washington

It is easy to castigate those who abhor the unjust usurpation of power in the name of good things as being against good things, or proponents of selfish things, but it is a shallow and meaningless argument.  You are better than that.

A fight does not have to be in service to things that do not benefit the self to have worth.  That a libertarian argument is an argument for a situation which would benefit the libertarian does not disqualify it as an argument, or demean it in any way.  An argument for lower taxes for me is selfish, an argument for lower taxes for everyone is not.  An argument for government to leave me alone is selfish, an argument for government to leave everyone alone is not.

From the very beginning of the government of this country there has been a struggle between those that would use the power of government to secure liberty and those that would use the power of government to impose their own will on others.  It is a very different thing to say "this is harmful, we're going to tax it, because taxes reduce consumption" and "we don't like this, we're going to blame you for it, and tax you."

What is disconcerting to the libertarian is the two party system, where one party is the oppressor of social liberty (Conservative stance on social issues) and the other is the oppressor of economic liberty (Democratic stance on economic issues).  So it's a pick your poison kind of thing.  Being unpopular and rich makes you a target of Democrats, regardless of whatever environmental arguments they are couching their sentiments in this week, if oil companies were poor they'd receive exactly as much attention as paint companies.  The worst environmental record doesn't earn you a spot on the shit list, it has to be paired with success.

Likewise, it doesn't matter how successful and contributory you are, if you're not fucking the right kind of person you end up on the conservative shit list.

The libertarian argument is to strip away the ability of government to take actionable steps on these irrational grudges.  Sometimes a thing needs to be done, true.  But you can't argue that something like education can only be handled by government unless you attended a government school in the US where that's what you were taught.  There are advantages to such a system, true.  But a huge disadvantage is the lack of competition that allows an idea like "the private sector can't be trusted" to become a gospel truth.  Nothing can be trusted, people can't be trusted, regardless of the nature of their employer.  By all means have a public education system.  But don't set up a system where it is virtually impossible for a private education system to compete with that.  A good option doesn't need the defense of public policy, but most public school systems in the US survive only because of the mandatory participation imposed by the government.  There's a history behind how we got where we are, but it should concern you that the defense of public education is not the failure to provide adequate public education in less settled areas historically, rather the utter ignorance of most of those who were subjected to public education that there's any other way to do it.

It's called indoctrination.  It's called propaganda.  And public policy should be supported by other means.  What the libertarian sentimentality seeks to do, more than anything, in my opinion, is to point out that much of the current public policy debate centers not on the merits of an individual program or idea, but on the entrenched interests of those who rely on the existence of the public policy.  It can sound selfish to want to get rid of the tax on nose hair because "what about all those poor nose hair tax collectors?"  But it isn't selfish.  We don't need a tax on nose hair.

All you can do is limit the scope of the damage any one person can do.  Vast scope of massive agencies is antithetical to that.  Opposing the desires of a community to set up their own school, and pay for it with money they are paying towards a school they no longer want to participate in, that's selfish.  Opposing everyone keeping a little more of their hard-earned money to use for their own good causes so you can force them to spend it on things you think are better causes, that's selfish.

Thank you for that lengthy post.

However, I was speaking from my own personal experience that the libertarians I have spoken to (who are very vocal in their libertarianness so I know that they strongly associate themselves with that political stripe), when they pronounce an opinion about whether something is going to have a good or bad affect on someone else, have an extraordinary tendency to literally tell me that they don't care because it doesn't affect them.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: TheOldestYoungMan on January 24, 2017, 12:22:07 PM
My husband is a libertarian.  I would love to be a libertarian, but in general, I don't think it is workable.  I think people suck far too much for it to work properly.  I think we would see a lot more people dying on the streets.  I think tribalism would end up determining everything and there would be a lot of violence and suffering.

All things in moderation.  I seek not a libertarian utopia, I seek only to counter the pressures of corporatism and socialism, to change the argument from we must do one of these two bad things, to we must do one of these two bad things, or nothing.  Reminding everyone that there's a third option is important.  That the harm we're doing to ourselves is self-inflicted.

Living in the US today is just about the most awesome experience a human has ever had.  Even if your experience is relatively worse than others' in the US, it is still objectively pretty badass.  Yet there seems this enormous pressure to change everything, this narrative that everything sucks and is getting worse.

We can't just eliminate the bad laws, we have to eliminate them and replace with something else, go bad the other way.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Libertea on January 24, 2017, 01:50:19 PM
Great post, TheOldestYoungMan.  And I agree completely. 

Kris, I also consider myself to hold libertarian views, and I would argue against wasting natural resources or ruining the planet because it violates the rights of others to have access to the "commons" of clean air, water, etc.  The biggest principle of libertarianism, IMO, is that everyone should be left to do as they wish up to the point that their doings interfere with the rights of others.  So if I want to pour raw sewage into a stream, I can't, because that violates your rights and everyone else's rights to have a clean stream.  Obviously, people's rights do conflict at times, and that's why we need police, courts, etc.  But in general, I don't want someone else telling me how to live my life, and in return, I will grant that I cannot tell anyone else how to live their lives (spend their money, etc).  So while I greatly disapprove of certain other lifestyle choices, if some people want to sit at home and get high, eat McDonald's every day, not wear seat belts, etc, the rest of us should not be forcing them to do the "right" thing at the point of a gun.  And that includes taking their money by force (taxation) for the "right" social projects, even if I personally like those social projects and agree with their aims.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: MVal on January 24, 2017, 01:53:44 PM
I can't see any evidence that libertarians, by definition, care about anything but their own self-interests.

I guess I'm not a pure libertarian, but I would disagree with this.  By preserving individual liberties, each person is free to voluntarily help whomever they want to help.  I'm a big believer in donating to charitable causes and being generous with other people when I can.  The point is that each person is not forced to give to others but can choose independently.  At least, that's how I see it.

I see it this way as well. Completely voluntary charity, which is a purer human expression anyway.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: shenlong55 on January 24, 2017, 02:17:04 PM
Great post, TheOldestYoungMan.  And I agree completely. 

Kris, I also consider myself to hold libertarian views, and I would argue against wasting natural resources or ruining the planet because it violates the rights of others to have access to the "commons" of clean air, water, etc.  The biggest principle of libertarianism, IMO, is that everyone should be left to do as they wish up to the point that their doings interfere with the rights of others.  So if I want to pour raw sewage into a stream, I can't, because that violates your rights and everyone else's rights to have a clean stream.  Obviously, people's rights do conflict at times, and that's why we need police, courts, etc.  But in general, I don't want someone else telling me how to live my life, and in return, I will grant that I cannot tell anyone else how to live their lives (spend their money, etc).  So while I greatly disapprove of certain other lifestyle choices, if some people want to sit at home and get high, eat McDonald's every day, not wear seat belts, etc, the rest of us should not be forcing them to do the "right" thing at the point of a gun.  And that includes taking their money by force (taxation) for the "right" social projects, even if I personally like those social projects and agree with their aims.

Just curious, does your definition of 'social projects' include national defense?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: robartsd on January 24, 2017, 04:16:19 PM
What kind of social issues are most dear to you? (just wondering)
There are few (if any) stands on social issues made by the Republican Party's Religious Right base that do not align with my personal moral values; I just think it is folly to try to legislate morality if you value freedom.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Libertea on January 24, 2017, 07:08:22 PM
Quote from: shenlong55
Just curious, does your definition of 'social projects' include national defense?
I can't say I've ever heard anyone describe national defense as a social project.  Given that nonaggression toward others is basically axiomatic to libertarianism, I'm curious why you chose that as a test case?

In general, I would say that protecting people's rights to life and liberty (including gainfully obtained property) is the primary time when using state force is both necessary and justified.  So if someone wants to attack you, whether it's your neighbor or someone on the other side of the planet, then it is reasonable to use state force to defend you against that attack.  Regardless of what organizational units we choose to use for the common defense, protection of the rights of the individual members should be one of the primary functions of the state's reason for existence.  So no, I would not call national defense a social project.  (I'm assuming here that we are speaking of true self defense and not getting into "nation-building" and other unwarranted acts of aggression toward others on our part).
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: bacchi on January 24, 2017, 07:31:59 PM
In general, I would say that protecting people's rights to life and liberty (including gainfully obtained property) is the primary time when using state force is both necessary and justified.  So if someone wants to attack you, whether it's your neighbor or someone on the other side of the planet, then it is reasonable to use state force to defend you against that attack.  Regardless of what organizational units we choose to use for the common defense, protection of the rights of the individual members should be one of the primary functions of the state's reason for existence.  So no, I would not call national defense a social project.  (I'm assuming here that we are speaking of true self defense and not getting into "nation-building" and other unwarranted acts of aggression toward others on our part).

Why does it have to be the state? If people want to defend themselves, they can form a well regulated militia with themselves. Creating a military-industrial complex funded by taxes is antithetical to freedom, especially when the state military is often used against its own citizens (like at Waco).
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Libertea on January 24, 2017, 08:15:20 PM
In general, I would say that protecting people's rights to life and liberty (including gainfully obtained property) is the primary time when using state force is both necessary and justified.  So if someone wants to attack you, whether it's your neighbor or someone on the other side of the planet, then it is reasonable to use state force to defend you against that attack.  Regardless of what organizational units we choose to use for the common defense, protection of the rights of the individual members should be one of the primary functions of the state's reason for existence.  So no, I would not call national defense a social project.  (I'm assuming here that we are speaking of true self defense and not getting into "nation-building" and other unwarranted acts of aggression toward others on our part).

Why does it have to be the state? If people want to defend themselves, they can form a well regulated militia with themselves. Creating a military-industrial complex funded by taxes is antithetical to freedom, especially when the state military is often used against its own citizens (like at Waco).
I'm guessing you've never actually tried to form a well-regulated anything that involves a group of people, or you wouldn't be asking.  ;-)

All kidding aside, there's no inherent "has to be" WRT a state, in the sense that some other institution (like a private militia) could possibly be substituted instead.  But someone still has to run that institution, and the problem is that power is corrupting no matter who holds it (whether government, corporations, or some other entity).  Even an independent militia can run amok if it gains too much power.  So the argument you make against giving the power to a state is equally valid against giving it to a private militia or corporation.  Having our organizations turn against us is a risk we face any time we create one and then allow it to gain too much power.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: bacchi on January 24, 2017, 09:52:02 PM
In general, I would say that protecting people's rights to life and liberty (including gainfully obtained property) is the primary time when using state force is both necessary and justified.  So if someone wants to attack you, whether it's your neighbor or someone on the other side of the planet, then it is reasonable to use state force to defend you against that attack.  Regardless of what organizational units we choose to use for the common defense, protection of the rights of the individual members should be one of the primary functions of the state's reason for existence.  So no, I would not call national defense a social project.  (I'm assuming here that we are speaking of true self defense and not getting into "nation-building" and other unwarranted acts of aggression toward others on our part).

Why does it have to be the state? If people want to defend themselves, they can form a well regulated militia with themselves. Creating a military-industrial complex funded by taxes is antithetical to freedom, especially when the state military is often used against its own citizens (like at Waco).
I'm guessing you've never actually tried to form a well-regulated anything that involves a group of people, or you wouldn't be asking.  ;-)

All kidding aside, there's no inherent "has to be" WRT a state, in the sense that some other institution (like a private militia) could possibly be substituted instead.  But someone still has to run that institution, and the problem is that power is corrupting no matter who holds it (whether government, corporations, or some other entity).  Even an independent militia can run amok if it gains too much power.  So the argument you make against giving the power to a state is equally valid against giving it to a private militia or corporation.  Having our organizations turn against us is a risk we face any time we create one and then allow it to gain too much power.

Why even do it then? If someone threatens a city/state/country, people can form up to defend it. There doesn't need to be a taxpayer funded standing militia that will be host to corruption and waste. Get rid of it entirely and save us all the money.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Kris on January 25, 2017, 05:17:47 AM
In general, I would say that protecting people's rights to life and liberty (including gainfully obtained property) is the primary time when using state force is both necessary and justified.  So if someone wants to attack you, whether it's your neighbor or someone on the other side of the planet, then it is reasonable to use state force to defend you against that attack.  Regardless of what organizational units we choose to use for the common defense, protection of the rights of the individual members should be one of the primary functions of the state's reason for existence.  So no, I would not call national defense a social project.  (I'm assuming here that we are speaking of true self defense and not getting into "nation-building" and other unwarranted acts of aggression toward others on our part).

Why does it have to be the state? If people want to defend themselves, they can form a well regulated militia with themselves. Creating a military-industrial complex funded by taxes is antithetical to freedom, especially when the state military is often used against its own citizens (like at Waco).
I'm guessing you've never actually tried to form a well-regulated anything that involves a group of people, or you wouldn't be asking.  ;-)

All kidding aside, there's no inherent "has to be" WRT a state, in the sense that some other institution (like a private militia) could possibly be substituted instead.  But someone still has to run that institution, and the problem is that power is corrupting no matter who holds it (whether government, corporations, or some other entity).  Even an independent militia can run amok if it gains too much power.  So the argument you make against giving the power to a state is equally valid against giving it to a private militia or corporation.  Having our organizations turn against us is a risk we face any time we create one and then allow it to gain too much power.

Why even do it then? If someone threatens a city/state/country, people can form up to defend it. There doesn't need to be a taxpayer funded standing militia that will be host to corruption and waste. Get rid of it entirely and save us all the money.

I agree. Also, get rid of the fire departments. People shouldn't have to have money stolen out of their own pockets for that. Individuals have the right to protect themselves from fire or emergency.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: shenlong55 on January 25, 2017, 06:38:02 AM
So while I greatly disapprove of certain other lifestyle choices, if some people want to sit at home and get high, eat McDonald's every day, not wear seat belts, etc, the rest of us should not be forcing them to do the "right" thing at the point of a gun.  And that includes taking their money by force (taxation) for the "right" social projects, even if I personally like those social projects and agree with their aims.
Quote from: shenlong55
Just curious, does your definition of 'social projects' include national defense?
I can't say I've ever heard anyone describe national defense as a social project.  Given that nonaggression toward others is basically axiomatic to libertarianism, I'm curious why you chose that as a test case?

In general, I would say that protecting people's rights to life and liberty (including gainfully obtained property) is the primary time when using state force is both necessary and justified.  So if someone wants to attack you, whether it's your neighbor or someone on the other side of the planet, then it is reasonable to use state force to defend you against that attack.  Regardless of what organizational units we choose to use for the common defense, protection of the rights of the individual members should be one of the primary functions of the state's reason for existence.  So no, I would not call national defense a social project.  (I'm assuming here that we are speaking of true self defense and not getting into "nation-building" and other unwarranted acts of aggression toward others on our part).

Well, I'm not sure how your defining 'social project' anymore, but I chose national defense as a test case because it is a social project by my definition (a project that we undertake as a society) and because I think most people recognize the value in national defense.  And while I can see the value in having at least some level of national defense, I can guarantee you that there are people who do not want to pay for that social project.  But you appear to be okay with taking others money by force to pay for this particular social project, because you think it's 'necessary and justified'.  That seems to be at odds with your previous statement.

What if I think that universal healthcare is 'necessary and justified'?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: LalsConstant on January 25, 2017, 06:53:46 AM
I agree. Also, get rid of the fire departments. People shouldn't have to have money stolen out of their own pockets for that. Individuals have the right to protect themselves from fire or emergency.
Straw man argument by the way of false dichotomy.

What if Amazon launches its own fire extinguishing service which uses advanced chemical products to extinguish fires more quickly and with less collateral damage and I would rather have that instead?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: LalsConstant on January 25, 2017, 07:00:26 AM
What if I think that universal healthcare is 'necessary and justified'?

Unless you can explain how you came to this conclusion using the same definition of necessary and justified as the other poster, you're just playing rhetorical sleight of hand which ends up in both sides talking past each other.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: shenlong55 on January 25, 2017, 07:32:36 AM
What if I think that universal healthcare is 'necessary and justified'?

Unless you can explain how you came to this conclusion using the same definition of necessary and justified as the other poster, you're just playing rhetorical sleight of hand which ends up in both sides talking past each other.

Well, I don't know what definitions Libertea is using but here's my reasoning.

Quote
nec·es·sar·y
ˈnesəˌserē/
adjective
adjective: necessary

    1.
    required to be done, achieved, or present; needed; essential.
    "members are admitted only after they have gained the necessary experience"
    synonyms:   obligatory, requisite, required, compulsory, mandatory, imperative, needed, de rigueur; More

Quote
es·sen·tial
əˈsen(t)SHəl/
adjective
adjective: essential

    1.
    absolutely necessary; extremely important.
    "it is essential to keep up-to-date records"
    synonyms:   crucial, necessary, key, vital, indispensable, important, all-important, of the essence, critical, imperative, mandatory, compulsory, obligatory; More

Quote
jus·ti·fied
ˈjəstəˌfīd/
adjective
adjective: justified

    1.
    having, done for, or marked by a good or legitimate reason.

Personally, I would say that universal healthcare is definitely necessary/essential/extremely important and justified/done for a good or legitimate reason.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Libertea on January 25, 2017, 07:42:14 AM
Well, I'm not sure how your defining 'social project' anymore, but I chose national defense as a test case because it is a social project by my definition (a project that we undertake as a society) and because I think most people recognize the value in national defense.  And while I can see the value in having at least some level of national defense, I can guarantee you that there are people who do not want to pay for that social project.  But you appear to be okay with taking others money by force to pay for this particular social project, because you think it's 'necessary and justified'.  That seems to be at odds with your previous statement.

What if I think that universal healthcare is 'necessary and justified'?
In order for us to have a society, any society at all, there needs to be certain basic ground rules.  If I can't be reasonably secure against being attacked by others, then my entire life will by necessity consist of me trying to protect myself and anything I have from others who want to take them away from me.  Might will make right.  Clearly that is not a situation that maximizes anyone's freedom, since basic security is essential before anything else can be attempted or accomplished in a society.  So while it is true that defense is "social" in the sense that it involves a group of people, I don't consider it to be a "social project," because without it, we can't have a society at all.  I would consider those goals that are desirable to many (maybe most) people, but that are not essential for society to exist, to be social goals.  Paying for them via taxpayer dollars should be minimized as much as possible; even though complete elimination of state force is not possible, it should be well-circumscribed and limited.

Universal healthcare is something that many people consider desirable, and good health is almost certainly something that everyone considers desirable.  In reality, it is the second goal (good health) that is the real goal, not the first.  The infighting we have as a society is not about whether health is important, but rather about how we ought to go about maximizing health.  It's not a simple issue of just private versus public healthcare, not the least of which is because good health is also an important factor for leading a "good life" (however one defines that), and also because there are many members of society who are not able to provide that for themselves (with children being a clear and probably unobjectionable example). 

However, health care does not grow on trees and is not a renewable resource.  Someone has to provide that care, and those people ideally should do so willingly (unless you are ok with forcing health care providers to provide care).  We cannot magically conjure up more PCPs simply because we passed Obamacare, for example.  There is a limited amount of health care resources.  Since everyone desires good health, and since there is a significant (but not complete) overlap between access to medical care and good health, then a "fair" system of allocation has to be determined.  Some are fine with it just being based on what someone can afford to pay for; this actually may not maximize even the health of the wealthy (as with over testing and unnecessary procedures).  Many would agree that ability to pay is not a very fair allocation method because being poor shouldn't preclude one from being able to obtain medical care.  But again, if you can't force someone to provide that health care, how do you intend to make it universal?  Demand for healthcare will continue to increase faster than any increase in supply, not too dissimilar to how a newly widened road is already congested as soon as the renovation is completed.  And so we wind up with a relatively dysfunctional hybrid system that basically pleases no one and leaves us objectively less healthy as a nation than are residents of many other countries.  (Assuming that you, like I, are an American.)

I don't personally have a good answer to the question of how best to maximize health for individuals while minimizing state force and maximizing individual liberty.  I suspect that if there were an easy answer, no doubt it would already have been conceived of and implemented by people far more knowledgeable and intelligent than I am.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Kris on January 25, 2017, 07:50:06 AM
I agree. Also, get rid of the fire departments. People shouldn't have to have money stolen out of their own pockets for that. Individuals have the right to protect themselves from fire or emergency.
Straw man argument by the way of false dichotomy.

What if Amazon launches its own fire extinguishing service which uses advanced chemical products to extinguish fires more quickly and with less collateral damage and I would rather have that instead?

Okay. Well, that's the way things are likely to go in the future, so have at it! Unfortunately, that will make it too hard for local fire departments to run themselves because of lack of operating budgets. So the guy next to you, and the guy next to him might not have adequate fire protection. Hope one of their sparks doesn't hit your house.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Classical_Liberal on January 25, 2017, 08:21:29 AM
The fundamental problem with any "social project" is some groups of individuals will deem it "essential", others will not.  This means force must be used on those who deem it unessential to provide resources for said social project if one believes the resource cost should be distributed to all who benefit in a "fair" manner.  This is likely due to a fundamental flaw of humans ability to work with and understand large groups of other humans.  An evolutionary side effect of coming from small groups of hunter gatherers. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dunbar's_number

Libertarians tend to believe that small human groups and individuals will come together in more efficient forms to meet their perceived essential needs without significant use of force by government.  Now, modern society is so specialized and complex most realistic and serious libertarians will also concede that some social structures are required for maintenance of society (ie a group can not simply pick up sticks and align with other groups on an as need basis to defend their homeland anymore, some level of standing military is required).  OTOH, Democracy, by definition, forces the policies of the majority onto the minority.  So, this is a dangerous balance.  A balance which can best be held by understanding a simple concept; government sucks at everything.  As such, government force should only be used as a last resort, see this excellent post: http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/off-topic/can-you-convince-me-that-government-is-inevitably-incompetent/

One can always argue there will be a segment of society that makes poor decisions. This may be true from our perspective, but evidently not from theirs.  I, personally, don't like the idea of people starving in the the streets, nor the social disorder which would certainly result from said situation. However, beyond maintaining a "fair" system, it is not my responsibility to force some to give to others (personally, I would do this willingly) to avoid the results of individual or small group decisions that end poorly, beyond maintaining fairness of opportunity (which is NOT currently present).  In fact, a libertarian would argue it is the use of government force itself that has created the unfair system we see today, propagating poverty and what most on here would deem poor decisions.  Force and regulation creates an unjust and unfair system, to which we respond with more force and regulation in attempts to create a fair playing field.  Insanity, doing more of the same and expecting different results. I am hard pressed to think of modern examples of widespread systemic racism, unfairness, atrocities, etc that did not stem from some form of forced government institution, past or present.

Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: LalsConstant on January 25, 2017, 08:30:36 AM
What if I think that universal healthcare is 'necessary and justified'?

Unless you can explain how you came to this conclusion using the same definition of necessary and justified as the other poster, you're just playing rhetorical sleight of hand which ends up in both sides talking past each other.

Well, I don't know what definitions Libertea is using but here's my reasoning.

Quote
nec·es·sar·y
ˈnesəˌserē/
adjective
adjective: necessary

    1.
    required to be done, achieved, or present; needed; essential.
    "members are admitted only after they have gained the necessary experience"
    synonyms:   obligatory, requisite, required, compulsory, mandatory, imperative, needed, de rigueur; More

Quote
es·sen·tial
əˈsen(t)SHəl/
adjective
adjective: essential

    1.
    absolutely necessary; extremely important.
    "it is essential to keep up-to-date records"
    synonyms:   crucial, necessary, key, vital, indispensable, important, all-important, of the essence, critical, imperative, mandatory, compulsory, obligatory; More

Quote
jus·ti·fied
ˈjəstəˌfīd/
adjective
adjective: justified

    1.
    having, done for, or marked by a good or legitimate reason.

Personally, I would say that universal healthcare is definitely necessary/essential/extremely important and justified/done for a good or legitimate reason.

By those definitions one can argue the people being mocked in the comedy forum are making necessary and justified purchases.  The point being terms must be precise to context for the discussion to have meaning.  Invoking the dictionary definition isn't satisfactory especially given there are multiple dictionaries and that the dictionary definition by its nature must be concise.

I am not saying you are wrong or right I am just pointing out that unless both sides agree on the terms used no discussion will be fruitful.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: LalsConstant on January 25, 2017, 08:33:33 AM
I agree. Also, get rid of the fire departments. People shouldn't have to have money stolen out of their own pockets for that. Individuals have the right to protect themselves from fire or emergency.
Straw man argument by the way of false dichotomy.

What if Amazon launches its own fire extinguishing service which uses advanced chemical products to extinguish fires more quickly and with less collateral damage and I would rather have that instead?

Okay. Well, that's the way things are likely to go in the future, so have at it! Unfortunately, that will make it too hard for local fire departments to run themselves because of lack of operating budgets. So the guy next to you, and the guy next to him might not have adequate fire protection. Hope one of their sparks doesn't hit your house.

Again false dichotomy, but by way of shifting the goal posts.  The issue here isn't there must be a fire department the issue here is what requirements should be in place for property owners to avoids a tragedy of the commons?  The best way to resolve that is not necessarily to have a fire department.  All possible solutions should be considered.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Rimu05 on January 25, 2017, 08:38:20 AM
I am not a libertarian but I've read this thread because it's interesting to see other points of views. I'm more liberal and definitely into Keynesianism although not always.

Anyway, from reading this thread and being mostly ignorant about libertarianism, I'd like to ask what the stance is on infrastructure. It seems the general consensus here is less government to even no government, but does that mean things like infrastructure should be built by the highest bidder?

Also, things like public transport. Should we let private companies take care of this and just price at their own convenience? Sot off like Airlines?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Kris on January 25, 2017, 08:43:11 AM
I agree. Also, get rid of the fire departments. People shouldn't have to have money stolen out of their own pockets for that. Individuals have the right to protect themselves from fire or emergency.
Straw man argument by the way of false dichotomy.

What if Amazon launches its own fire extinguishing service which uses advanced chemical products to extinguish fires more quickly and with less collateral damage and I would rather have that instead?

Okay. Well, that's the way things are likely to go in the future, so have at it! Unfortunately, that will make it too hard for local fire departments to run themselves because of lack of operating budgets. So the guy next to you, and the guy next to him might not have adequate fire protection. Hope one of their sparks doesn't hit your house.

Again false dichotomy, but by way of shifting the goal posts.  The issue here isn't there must be a fire department the issue here is what requirements should be in place for property owners to avoids a tragedy of the commons?  The best way to resolve that is not necessarily to have a fire department.  All possible solutions should be considered.
[/b]

This is true.

However -- and I recognize I have not talked to all libertarians -- I have literally never heard a libertarian give a list of concrete and workable/fleshed out "solutions" to a problem that is currently addressed (more successfully or less so) by a public service.

So, actually, I would love for you to put down your thoughts for a plan for something like that. E.g., other alternatives, fleshed out somewhat, to a fire department. Or a police department. Workable solutions that would work for both smaller and larger agglomerations -- with tweaking, of course.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Spork on January 25, 2017, 10:28:21 AM
I agree. Also, get rid of the fire departments. People shouldn't have to have money stolen out of their own pockets for that. Individuals have the right to protect themselves from fire or emergency.
Straw man argument by the way of false dichotomy.

What if Amazon launches its own fire extinguishing service which uses advanced chemical products to extinguish fires more quickly and with less collateral damage and I would rather have that instead?

Okay. Well, that's the way things are likely to go in the future, so have at it! Unfortunately, that will make it too hard for local fire departments to run themselves because of lack of operating budgets. So the guy next to you, and the guy next to him might not have adequate fire protection. Hope one of their sparks doesn't hit your house.

Again false dichotomy, but by way of shifting the goal posts.  The issue here isn't there must be a fire department the issue here is what requirements should be in place for property owners to avoids a tragedy of the commons?  The best way to resolve that is not necessarily to have a fire department.  All possible solutions should be considered.
[/b]

This is true.

However -- and I recognize I have not talked to all libertarians -- I have literally never heard a libertarian give a list of concrete and workable/fleshed out "solutions" to a problem that is currently addressed (more successfully or less so) by a public service.

So, actually, I would love for you to put down your thoughts for a plan for something like that. E.g., other alternatives, fleshed out somewhat, to a fire department. Or a police department. Workable solutions that would work for both smaller and larger agglomerations -- with tweaking, of course.

I think most Libertarians (or at least more little 'l' libertarians) would just be happy with not building NEW conglomerations.  In fact, I think a huge majority of us would call it a victory if we could just implement something as silly as "Stop giving government money to rich people."
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Kris on January 25, 2017, 10:31:49 AM
I agree. Also, get rid of the fire departments. People shouldn't have to have money stolen out of their own pockets for that. Individuals have the right to protect themselves from fire or emergency.
Straw man argument by the way of false dichotomy.

What if Amazon launches its own fire extinguishing service which uses advanced chemical products to extinguish fires more quickly and with less collateral damage and I would rather have that instead?

Okay. Well, that's the way things are likely to go in the future, so have at it! Unfortunately, that will make it too hard for local fire departments to run themselves because of lack of operating budgets. So the guy next to you, and the guy next to him might not have adequate fire protection. Hope one of their sparks doesn't hit your house.

Again false dichotomy, but by way of shifting the goal posts.  The issue here isn't there must be a fire department the issue here is what requirements should be in place for property owners to avoids a tragedy of the commons?  The best way to resolve that is not necessarily to have a fire department.  All possible solutions should be considered.
[/b]

This is true.

However -- and I recognize I have not talked to all libertarians -- I have literally never heard a libertarian give a list of concrete and workable/fleshed out "solutions" to a problem that is currently addressed (more successfully or less so) by a public service.

So, actually, I would love for you to put down your thoughts for a plan for something like that. E.g., other alternatives, fleshed out somewhat, to a fire department. Or a police department. Workable solutions that would work for both smaller and larger agglomerations -- with tweaking, of course.

I think most Libertarians (or at least more little 'l' libertarians) would just be happy with not building NEW conglomerations.  In fact, I think a huge majority of us would call it a victory if we could just implement something as silly as "Stop giving government money to rich people."

I'd say most liberals are right there with you.

But I'm not so sure "most" libertarians feel that way. Or at least, they are quite unrepresented in the sample population I've interacted with. I've had a hell of a lot of "taxation is theft" conversations -- a hell of a lot more of those than "stop giving government money to rich people."
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Lagom on January 25, 2017, 10:49:26 AM
I'd say most liberals are right there with you.

But I'm not so sure "most" libertarians feel that way. Or at least, they are quite unrepresented in the sample population I've interacted with. I've had a hell of a lot of "taxation is theft" conversations -- a hell of a lot more of those than "stop giving government money to rich people."

I think most actual libertarians would agree with Spork, but the movement is rife with people who have appropriated the mantel of libertarianism to promote various extreme (usually right-wing) views under the veneer of protecting "liberty" and "freedom of association." These people all voted for Trump and see little to no conflict with that choice. I just wish more true libertarians would spend some time actively trying to divest themselves of this cancerous parasite that has attached itself to what otherwise is a laudable, if (in my opinion) unrealistic cause. I'm not saying every libertarian is complicit. Far from it. But many seem reluctant to decry others who dislike the federal government, regardless of their reasons. 
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Spork on January 25, 2017, 10:52:25 AM
I agree. Also, get rid of the fire departments. People shouldn't have to have money stolen out of their own pockets for that. Individuals have the right to protect themselves from fire or emergency.
Straw man argument by the way of false dichotomy.

What if Amazon launches its own fire extinguishing service which uses advanced chemical products to extinguish fires more quickly and with less collateral damage and I would rather have that instead?

Okay. Well, that's the way things are likely to go in the future, so have at it! Unfortunately, that will make it too hard for local fire departments to run themselves because of lack of operating budgets. So the guy next to you, and the guy next to him might not have adequate fire protection. Hope one of their sparks doesn't hit your house.

Again false dichotomy, but by way of shifting the goal posts.  The issue here isn't there must be a fire department the issue here is what requirements should be in place for property owners to avoids a tragedy of the commons?  The best way to resolve that is not necessarily to have a fire department.  All possible solutions should be considered.
[/b]

This is true.

However -- and I recognize I have not talked to all libertarians -- I have literally never heard a libertarian give a list of concrete and workable/fleshed out "solutions" to a problem that is currently addressed (more successfully or less so) by a public service.

So, actually, I would love for you to put down your thoughts for a plan for something like that. E.g., other alternatives, fleshed out somewhat, to a fire department. Or a police department. Workable solutions that would work for both smaller and larger agglomerations -- with tweaking, of course.

I think most Libertarians (or at least more little 'l' libertarians) would just be happy with not building NEW conglomerations.  In fact, I think a huge majority of us would call it a victory if we could just implement something as silly as "Stop giving government money to rich people."

I'd say most liberals are right there with you.

But I'm not so sure "most" libertarians feel that way. Or at least, they are quite unrepresented in the sample population I've interacted with. I've had a hell of a lot of "taxation is theft" conversations -- a hell of a lot more of those than "stop giving government money to rich people."

While I think a lot of "taxation is theft" ... to paraphrase your thoughts up thread: I'm old.  I'd be fine with a whole lot less than my "ideal."
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Kris on January 25, 2017, 10:55:21 AM
I'd say most liberals are right there with you.

But I'm not so sure "most" libertarians feel that way. Or at least, they are quite unrepresented in the sample population I've interacted with. I've had a hell of a lot of "taxation is theft" conversations -- a hell of a lot more of those than "stop giving government money to rich people."

I think most actual libertarians would agree with Spork, but the movement is rife with people who have appropriated the mantel of libertarianism to promote various extreme (usually right-wing) views under the veneer of protecting "liberty" and "freedom of association." These people all voted for Trump and see little to no conflict with that choice. I just wish more true libertarians would spend some time actively trying to divest themselves of this cancerous parasite that has attached itself to what otherwise is a laudable, if (in my opinion) unrealistic cause. I'm not saying every libertarian is complicit. Far from it. But many seem reluctant to decry others who dislike the federal government, regardless of their reasons.

Interesting. Perhaps you're right. I certainly do see the extremists out in force. Of course, they are probably more vocal. The people in my real life experiences who look like the "true" libertarians you describe seem to have slipped out of Republicanism, had a brief flirt with libertarianism, and then moved to voting for Democrats out of social progressiveness, while keeping their critical thinking skills actively engaged regarding the failures of neo-liberalism.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Spork on January 25, 2017, 11:00:03 AM
I'd say most liberals are right there with you.

But I'm not so sure "most" libertarians feel that way. Or at least, they are quite unrepresented in the sample population I've interacted with. I've had a hell of a lot of "taxation is theft" conversations -- a hell of a lot more of those than "stop giving government money to rich people."

I think most actual libertarians would agree with Spork, but the movement is rife with people who have appropriated the mantel of libertarianism to promote various extreme (usually right-wing) views under the veneer of protecting "liberty" and "freedom of association." These people all voted for Trump and see little to no conflict with that choice. I just wish more true libertarians would spend some time actively trying to divest themselves of this cancerous parasite that has attached itself to what otherwise is a laudable, if (in my opinion) unrealistic cause. I'm not saying every libertarian is complicit. Far from it. But many seem reluctant to decry others who dislike the federal government, regardless of their reasons.

Interesting. Perhaps you're right. I certainly do see the extremists out in force. Of course, they are probably more vocal. The people in my real life experiences who look like the "true" libertarians you describe seem to have slipped out of Republicanism, had a brief flirt with libertarianism, and then moved to voting for Democrats out of social progressiveness, while keeping their critical thinking skills actively engaged regarding the failures of neo-liberalism.

Libertarian is a pretty frustrating pigeon hole to be in. 

You KNOW your guy probably won't win. 
You are HARD left on most social issues... and the left seems to vilify you.
You are HARD right on most economic issues... and the right seems to vilify you.

I know our numbers are small and probably don't really matter in the grand scheme of things... But it just seems to me there would be a reasonable way to work with both sides on an issue-by-issue basis.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Kris on January 25, 2017, 11:23:59 AM
I'd say most liberals are right there with you.

But I'm not so sure "most" libertarians feel that way. Or at least, they are quite unrepresented in the sample population I've interacted with. I've had a hell of a lot of "taxation is theft" conversations -- a hell of a lot more of those than "stop giving government money to rich people."

I think most actual libertarians would agree with Spork, but the movement is rife with people who have appropriated the mantel of libertarianism to promote various extreme (usually right-wing) views under the veneer of protecting "liberty" and "freedom of association." These people all voted for Trump and see little to no conflict with that choice. I just wish more true libertarians would spend some time actively trying to divest themselves of this cancerous parasite that has attached itself to what otherwise is a laudable, if (in my opinion) unrealistic cause. I'm not saying every libertarian is complicit. Far from it. But many seem reluctant to decry others who dislike the federal government, regardless of their reasons.

Interesting. Perhaps you're right. I certainly do see the extremists out in force. Of course, they are probably more vocal. The people in my real life experiences who look like the "true" libertarians you describe seem to have slipped out of Republicanism, had a brief flirt with libertarianism, and then moved to voting for Democrats out of social progressiveness, while keeping their critical thinking skills actively engaged regarding the failures of neo-liberalism.

Libertarian is a pretty frustrating pigeon hole to be in. 

You KNOW your guy probably won't win. 
You are HARD left on most social issues... and the left seems to vilify you.
You are HARD right on most economic issues... and the right seems to vilify you.

I know our numbers are small and probably don't really matter in the grand scheme of things... But it just seems to me there would be a reasonable way to work with both sides on an issue-by-issue basis.

Libertarians seem only to be interested in running the occasional federal candidate, no? That's not really a "party," so not surprising that the effectiveness of the candidates are limited.

I think if libertarians actually organized themselves into local, state, and national chapters, they might manage better -- but then again, they seem pretty anti-government, so I don't know if that's very workable.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: shenlong55 on January 25, 2017, 11:39:08 AM
In order for us to have a society, any society at all, there needs to be certain basic ground rules.  If I can't be reasonably secure against being attacked by others, then my entire life will by necessity consist of me trying to protect myself and anything I have from others who want to take them away from me.  Might will make right.  Clearly that is not a situation that maximizes anyone's freedom, since basic security is essential before anything else can be attempted or accomplished in a society.  So while it is true that defense is "social" in the sense that it involves a group of people, I don't consider it to be a "social project," because without it, we can't have a society at all.  I would consider those goals that are desirable to many (maybe most) people, but that are not essential for society to exist, to be social goals.  Paying for them via taxpayer dollars should be minimized as much as possible; even though complete elimination of state force is not possible, it should be well-circumscribed and limited.

But defense is not necessary for security, nor for society.  People have free will right?  We could all just choose peaceful solutions to our problems instead of violence.  Come to think of it, I don't feel secure in my neighborhood because I trust the police, I feel safe in my neighborhood because I trust my neighbors.  Now I'm getting a little upset that I have to pay for police protection, what good does it do me if all my neighbors are good, trustworthy people?  I'm wasting a lot of my money to pay the salaries of police officers that don't do jack for me!*

Universal healthcare is something that many people consider desirable, and good health is almost certainly something that everyone considers desirable.  In reality, it is the second goal (good health) that is the real goal, not the first.  The infighting we have as a society is not about whether health is important, but rather about how we ought to go about maximizing health.  It's not a simple issue of just private versus public healthcare, not the least of which is because good health is also an important factor for leading a "good life" (however one defines that), and also because there are many members of society who are not able to provide that for themselves (with children being a clear and probably unobjectionable example). 

However, health care does not grow on trees and is not a renewable resource.  Someone has to provide that care, and those people ideally should do so willingly (unless you are ok with forcing health care providers to provide care).  We cannot magically conjure up more PCPs simply because we passed Obamacare, for example.  There is a limited amount of health care resources.  Since everyone desires good health, and since there is a significant (but not complete) overlap between access to medical care and good health, then a "fair" system of allocation has to be determined.  Some are fine with it just being based on what someone can afford to pay for; this actually may not maximize even the health of the wealthy (as with over testing and unnecessary procedures).  Many would agree that ability to pay is not a very fair allocation method because being poor shouldn't preclude one from being able to obtain medical care.  But again, if you can't force someone to provide that health care, how do you intend to make it universal?  Demand for healthcare will continue to increase faster than any increase in supply, not too dissimilar to how a newly widened road is already congested as soon as the renovation is completed.  And so we wind up with a relatively dysfunctional hybrid system that basically pleases no one and leaves us objectively less healthy as a nation than are residents of many other countries.  (Assuming that you, like I, are an American.)

I don't personally have a good answer to the question of how best to maximize health for individuals while minimizing state force and maximizing individual liberty.  I suspect that if there were an easy answer, no doubt it would already have been conceived of and implemented by people far more knowledgeable and intelligent than I am.

Actually, I think I agree with you on a lot of what your saying here.  I agree that there is a limited amount of health care resources available at this moment in time, but I also recognize that we have ways of increasing the amount of available resources if we choose to do so.  I also agree that somebody will have to provide that care/security and those people ideally should do so willingly (unless you are okay with forcing health care providers/soldiers/police to provide care).  I know we can't magically conjure up more PCPs/soldiers simply because we passed Obamacare/the draft, be we could use various methods to incentivize more people to become doctors/soldiers.  I would also agree that the ability to pay is not a very fair allocation method, because being poor shouldn't preclude one from being able to obtain medical care/security.  I'm not sure of the answer to how we make health care universal, but some clues may be found in how we made security universal.

*I'm mostly playing devil's advocate here.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: shenlong55 on January 25, 2017, 11:48:19 AM
By those definitions one can argue the people being mocked in the comedy forum are making necessary and justified purchases.  The point being terms must be precise to context for the discussion to have meaning.  Invoking the dictionary definition isn't satisfactory especially given there are multiple dictionaries and that the dictionary definition by its nature must be concise.

I am not saying you are wrong or right I am just pointing out that unless both sides agree on the terms used no discussion will be fruitful.

I completely agree with your point, I'm just not sure what your proposed solution is.  Should we all debate and discuss the meaning of every word that we're going to use in a debate beforehand?  My personal solution is to use shared (dictionary) definitions by default and if a discrepancy comes up during the debate to address it at that point.  Especially since a lot of people seem to get upset when I start talking semantics, I don't think people like their definitions being challenged.  Personally, I think semantics are often the best way to get at the root of a disagreement, but that doesn't seem to be a common view.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Spork on January 25, 2017, 07:36:16 PM
I'd say most liberals are right there with you.

But I'm not so sure "most" libertarians feel that way. Or at least, they are quite unrepresented in the sample population I've interacted with. I've had a hell of a lot of "taxation is theft" conversations -- a hell of a lot more of those than "stop giving government money to rich people."

I think most actual libertarians would agree with Spork, but the movement is rife with people who have appropriated the mantel of libertarianism to promote various extreme (usually right-wing) views under the veneer of protecting "liberty" and "freedom of association." These people all voted for Trump and see little to no conflict with that choice. I just wish more true libertarians would spend some time actively trying to divest themselves of this cancerous parasite that has attached itself to what otherwise is a laudable, if (in my opinion) unrealistic cause. I'm not saying every libertarian is complicit. Far from it. But many seem reluctant to decry others who dislike the federal government, regardless of their reasons.

Interesting. Perhaps you're right. I certainly do see the extremists out in force. Of course, they are probably more vocal. The people in my real life experiences who look like the "true" libertarians you describe seem to have slipped out of Republicanism, had a brief flirt with libertarianism, and then moved to voting for Democrats out of social progressiveness, while keeping their critical thinking skills actively engaged regarding the failures of neo-liberalism.

Libertarian is a pretty frustrating pigeon hole to be in. 

You KNOW your guy probably won't win. 
You are HARD left on most social issues... and the left seems to vilify you.
You are HARD right on most economic issues... and the right seems to vilify you.

I know our numbers are small and probably don't really matter in the grand scheme of things... But it just seems to me there would be a reasonable way to work with both sides on an issue-by-issue basis.

Libertarians seem only to be interested in running the occasional federal candidate, no? That's not really a "party," so not surprising that the effectiveness of the candidates are limited.

I think if libertarians actually organized themselves into local, state, and national chapters, they might manage better -- but then again, they seem pretty anti-government, so I don't know if that's very workable.

I'm not sure how it is where you are.  We have a local chapter.  We have candidates on the state ballots.  I think the lack of success is BOTH (a) very small numbers actually call themselves libertarian (or even know what libertarian is) and (b) people want to vote for a winner.  It doesn't matter if he/she isn't representative... they want to get behind someone that will win.  I'm willing to concede it is likely more A than B.

Limited government isn't anti-government.  It may not be your ideal.  It's still government.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Marky Mark on January 27, 2017, 04:12:18 PM
Limited government isn't anti-government.   Exactly this.

Libertarians are stigmatized by the same political dynamic as Teams R and D - detractors want to define the movement by the most extreme members. Let's be honest, there are Republicans who, if they could, would implement an authoritarian theocracy. There are Democrats who are out and out Marxists, and some who identify as Libertarians are actually anarchists.   

I left the GOP because I came to realize that many in the party were just as much 'big government' types as the Democrats, they only differ in WHAT they want that big government to do.  I consider myself a moderate Libertarian, and certainly don't agree with every policy issue in the party.   I want far less government (particularly at the Federal level) than we have, but also believe that safety and security is job one for any government.  I find some "libertarian" positions ridiculous, like "every road should be a toll road" or carping about those "unconstitutional National Parks". Really? 
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: RangerOne on January 27, 2017, 05:03:44 PM
I like a lot of things about Libertarianism. I think its core appealing component is that it celebrates individualism and choice. Things important to most Americans especially, we want as much control and choice as possible.

However I tend to diverge with their current standard bearers on a few issues.

I think they are too soft on climate change and too willing to downplay the risk in order question good regulations. In fact for a variety of different reasons I feel like current Republicans and Libertarians are overly willing to simply paint all regulation and institutions like the EPA as terrible things that need to be gutted. I suppose that gross simplification makes public appeal easier. But I would prefer they would discuss deregulation in a more complex and thoughtful way that doesn't dismiss our best science.

I also think people like Gary Johnson were a bit soft on corporate and private financing for campaigns. Though I suppose a more limited government naturally will become less corrupt because their is less complexity to abuse.

But I would much rather have any of libertarian people in office right now over our current bunch even with those gripes.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Classical_Liberal on January 27, 2017, 09:20:12 PM
I like a lot of things about Libertarianism. I think its core appealing component is that it celebrates individualism and choice. Things important to most Americans especially, we want as much control and choice as possible.

However I tend to diverge with their current standard bearers on a few issues.

I think they are too soft on climate change and too willing to downplay the risk in order question good regulations. In fact for a variety of different reasons I feel like current Republicans and Libertarians are overly willing to simply paint all regulation and institutions like the EPA as terrible things that need to be gutted. I suppose that gross simplification makes public appeal easier. But I would prefer they would discuss deregulation in a more complex and thoughtful way that doesn't dismiss our best science.

I also think people like Gary Johnson were a bit soft on corporate and private financing for campaigns. Though I suppose a more limited government naturally will become less corrupt because their is less complexity to abuse.

But I would much rather have any of libertarian people in office right now over our current bunch even with those gripes.

If you believe the current models of climate change, how in the world can you suggest the EPA has been effective in preventing environmental catastrophes?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Telecaster on January 28, 2017, 12:26:33 AM
If you believe the current models of climate change, how in the world can you suggest the EPA has been effective in preventing environmental catastrophes?

I didn't see that suggestion the post.  He said...actually I'll just quote it:  "I feel like current Republicans and Libertarians are overly willing to simply paint all regulation and institutions like the EPA as terrible things that need to be gutted."

There was no comment about the effectiveness of EPA or even climate change.  It was simply an opinion (and framed as an opinion) about how Republicans and Libertarians view EPA.  Feel free to disagree, but I think that's pretty much on. 

Recall also, EPA follows rules created by Congress. If EPA isn't preventing environmental catastrophe, blame the rule makers. 

That said, EPA along with other government agencies and with some luck have been very, very effective at reducing increases in greenhouse gas emissions.    Beyond what most people expected, actually. 
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Metric Mouse on January 28, 2017, 12:50:04 AM
If you believe the current models of climate change, how in the world can you suggest the EPA has been effective in preventing environmental catastrophes?

I didn't see that suggestion the post.  He said...actually I'll just quote it:  "I feel like current Republicans and Libertarians are overly willing to simply paint all regulation and institutions like the EPA as terrible things that need to be gutted."

There was no comment about the effectiveness of EPA or even climate change.  It was simply an opinion (and framed as an opinion) about how Republicans and Libertarians view EPA.  Feel free to disagree, but I think that's pretty much on. 

Recall also, EPA follows rules created by Congress. If EPA isn't preventing environmental catastrophe, blame the rule makers. 

That said, EPA along with other government agencies and with some luck have been very, very effective at reducing increases in greenhouse gas emissions.    Beyond what most people expected, actually.
By luck do you mean fracking developments that have flooded the market with cheap, available natural gas? That's one of the large drivers of America's emissions reductions over the past few years.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Classical_Liberal on January 28, 2017, 11:21:21 AM
If you believe the current models of climate change, how in the world can you suggest the EPA has been effective in preventing environmental catastrophes?

I didn't see that suggestion the post.  He said...actually I'll just quote it:  "I feel like current Republicans and Libertarians are overly willing to simply paint all regulation and institutions like the EPA as terrible things that need to be gutted."

There was no comment about the effectiveness of EPA or even climate change.  It was simply an opinion (and framed as an opinion) about how Republicans and Libertarians view EPA.  Feel free to disagree, but I think that's pretty much on. 

Recall also, EPA follows rules created by Congress. If EPA isn't preventing environmental catastrophe, blame the rule makers. 

That said, EPA along with other government agencies and with some luck have been very, very effective at reducing increases in greenhouse gas emissions.    Beyond what most people expected, actually.

Perhaps I misjudged the comment (Rangerone feel free to correct me), but I read Rangerone's entire statement in context as being one of general agreement with libertarian principles.  However, Rangerone can not support the libertarian policies which would gut good agencies like the EPA, which have good, society protecting agendas.   I was merely pointing out that the EPA has been an inefficient and abysmal failure (like most government agencies) at performing the duties for which it was created. My comment was an obvious attempt to have Rangerone consider a different framework in which to achieve environmental protection. 

As far as blaming the rule makers... I do, they were not libertarians :)

Regarding your last statement of EPA effectiveness, please see MM informed and eloquent reply.  Market conditions created change, not a government agency.

Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: bacchi on January 28, 2017, 01:38:07 PM
If you believe the current models of climate change, how in the world can you suggest the EPA has been effective in preventing environmental catastrophes?

I didn't see that suggestion the post.  He said...actually I'll just quote it:  "I feel like current Republicans and Libertarians are overly willing to simply paint all regulation and institutions like the EPA as terrible things that need to be gutted."

There was no comment about the effectiveness of EPA or even climate change.  It was simply an opinion (and framed as an opinion) about how Republicans and Libertarians view EPA.  Feel free to disagree, but I think that's pretty much on. 

Recall also, EPA follows rules created by Congress. If EPA isn't preventing environmental catastrophe, blame the rule makers. 

That said, EPA along with other government agencies and with some luck have been very, very effective at reducing increases in greenhouse gas emissions.    Beyond what most people expected, actually.
By luck do you mean fracking developments that have flooded the market with cheap, available natural gas? That's one of the large drivers of America's emissions reductions over the past few years.

Don't forget the earthquakes! Fracking has also flooded Oklahoma and North Texas with plenty of earthquakes.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Metric Mouse on January 28, 2017, 08:59:56 PM
If you believe the current models of climate change, how in the world can you suggest the EPA has been effective in preventing environmental catastrophes?

I didn't see that suggestion the post.  He said...actually I'll just quote it:  "I feel like current Republicans and Libertarians are overly willing to simply paint all regulation and institutions like the EPA as terrible things that need to be gutted."

There was no comment about the effectiveness of EPA or even climate change.  It was simply an opinion (and framed as an opinion) about how Republicans and Libertarians view EPA.  Feel free to disagree, but I think that's pretty much on. 

Recall also, EPA follows rules created by Congress. If EPA isn't preventing environmental catastrophe, blame the rule makers. 

That said, EPA along with other government agencies and with some luck have been very, very effective at reducing increases in greenhouse gas emissions.    Beyond what most people expected, actually.
By luck do you mean fracking developments that have flooded the market with cheap, available natural gas? That's one of the large drivers of America's emissions reductions over the past few years.

Don't forget the earthquakes! Fracking has also flooded Oklahoma and North Texas with plenty of earthquakes.
As I don't consider earthquakes lucky or a driver of climate change, I didn't see the need to consider them in my comment.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Telecaster on January 30, 2017, 12:14:46 AM

Regarding your last statement of EPA effectiveness, please see MM informed and eloquent reply.  Market conditions created change, not a government agency.

When I said "a bit of luck" I did in fact mean changes in market conditions.  However, it is false and misleading to suggest that was the only reason.  There was a lot more to it than that.  The data of where and how the carbon reductions came about are available, and you may wish to examine this site as a starting place:

https://www.eia.gov/environment/emissions/carbon/

If you will, scroll down to Figure 12.   You can see that for electricity generation, the greatest reduction in carbon emissions was due to natural gas.  But generation from non-carbon sources is a major contributor.   There is a wealth of information on that page, and as you scroll through you can see that carbon emissions from liquid petroleum is also dropping.  That has zero to do with fracking.  It does relate to things like CAFE standards and increasing use of electric and hybrid vehicles.  Figure 3 is informative on that point, the transportation sector is producing less carbon.  That also has nothing to do with fracking.

Let me float a trial balloon here. If carbon emission are dropping in sectors unaffected by fracking, then maybe it is a bit silly to give fracking all the credit for dropping carbon emissions.  Some sure, but all? No, that would be nonsense.   Maybe a bottom line look is better:

http://www.eia.gov/totalenergy/data/monthly/pdf/sec2_3.pdf

Bottom line:  Even though the economy is growing, energy consumption is declining.  There are lots of reason for this, not all of them have to do with government policy, but many of them do.  Some of those reasons include renewable portfolio standards created by the various states, subsidies on the federal and local level for renewables, increases in energy efficiency standards for everything from light bulbs, to cars, to HVAC equipment, loan guarantees for various renewables including nuclear.  Not to mention millions of government buildings and public housing have been upgraded for energy efficiency.  The DOE renewable portfolio has had a few failures like Solyndra, and even more successes like Tesla.   The result is that  wind-energy prices have fallen by 66 percent, utility-scale solar-energy prices by 75 percent, and electric-car-battery costs by 65 percent.  You can see if those trends continue even a while longer the carbon-based economy will become a pale shadow of its former self.  It is already happening in dramatic fashion and in a very short period of time. 






Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: TheOldestYoungMan on January 30, 2017, 10:09:21 AM
In general, I would say that protecting people's rights to life and liberty (including gainfully obtained property) is the primary time when using state force is both necessary and justified.  So if someone wants to attack you, whether it's your neighbor or someone on the other side of the planet, then it is reasonable to use state force to defend you against that attack.  Regardless of what organizational units we choose to use for the common defense, protection of the rights of the individual members should be one of the primary functions of the state's reason for existence.  So no, I would not call national defense a social project.  (I'm assuming here that we are speaking of true self defense and not getting into "nation-building" and other unwarranted acts of aggression toward others on our part).

Why does it have to be the state? If people want to defend themselves, they can form a well regulated militia with themselves. Creating a military-industrial complex funded by taxes is antithetical to freedom, especially when the state military is often used against its own citizens (like at Waco).
I'm guessing you've never actually tried to form a well-regulated anything that involves a group of people, or you wouldn't be asking.  ;-)

All kidding aside, there's no inherent "has to be" WRT a state, in the sense that some other institution (like a private militia) could possibly be substituted instead.  But someone still has to run that institution, and the problem is that power is corrupting no matter who holds it (whether government, corporations, or some other entity).  Even an independent militia can run amok if it gains too much power.  So the argument you make against giving the power to a state is equally valid against giving it to a private militia or corporation.  Having our organizations turn against us is a risk we face any time we create one and then allow it to gain too much power.

Why even do it then? If someone threatens a city/state/country, people can form up to defend it. There doesn't need to be a taxpayer funded standing militia that will be host to corruption and waste. Get rid of it entirely and save us all the money.

I agree. Also, get rid of the fire departments. People shouldn't have to have money stolen out of their own pockets for that. Individuals have the right to protect themselves from fire or emergency.

The overwhelming majority of fire departments in the USA are volunteer.  By the numbers, most firefighters are volunteer.  In terms of assets covered by volunteer vs. paid departments, volunteer wins if you count only property held by individuals (this one is flimsy, because you end up discounting most of the dense urban real estate of big cities like NY).  Almost 100% of the funding for those volunteer departments is from local property taxes.  Hell, almost 100% of the funding from the paid departments also comes from local property taxes.

Volunteer departments will tend to have better gear and apparatus, because they are free of the heavy pension load of the paid departments.  Some are even able to compensate the firefighters a nominal amount per year to cover transportation costs, etc.

There's even a handful of locations where fire service is provided by private contract, and you contract with a local fire provider (many of these are not great, but some of them can go toe-to-toe with any other arrangement).

The fire department is about as libertarian as it gets.  In fact, in places where the tax for the FD is called out separately and is optional, the FD will respond if your house is on fire and you opted out, but only to make sure it doesn't spread to your neighbors.  This is backed up as legal and correct in several court cases.

But only liberals have facts, so I assume you knew this already.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Kris on January 30, 2017, 10:12:46 AM
In general, I would say that protecting people's rights to life and liberty (including gainfully obtained property) is the primary time when using state force is both necessary and justified.  So if someone wants to attack you, whether it's your neighbor or someone on the other side of the planet, then it is reasonable to use state force to defend you against that attack.  Regardless of what organizational units we choose to use for the common defense, protection of the rights of the individual members should be one of the primary functions of the state's reason for existence.  So no, I would not call national defense a social project.  (I'm assuming here that we are speaking of true self defense and not getting into "nation-building" and other unwarranted acts of aggression toward others on our part).

Why does it have to be the state? If people want to defend themselves, they can form a well regulated militia with themselves. Creating a military-industrial complex funded by taxes is antithetical to freedom, especially when the state military is often used against its own citizens (like at Waco).
I'm guessing you've never actually tried to form a well-regulated anything that involves a group of people, or you wouldn't be asking.  ;-)

All kidding aside, there's no inherent "has to be" WRT a state, in the sense that some other institution (like a private militia) could possibly be substituted instead.  But someone still has to run that institution, and the problem is that power is corrupting no matter who holds it (whether government, corporations, or some other entity).  Even an independent militia can run amok if it gains too much power.  So the argument you make against giving the power to a state is equally valid against giving it to a private militia or corporation.  Having our organizations turn against us is a risk we face any time we create one and then allow it to gain too much power.

Why even do it then? If someone threatens a city/state/country, people can form up to defend it. There doesn't need to be a taxpayer funded standing militia that will be host to corruption and waste. Get rid of it entirely and save us all the money.

I agree. Also, get rid of the fire departments. People shouldn't have to have money stolen out of their own pockets for that. Individuals have the right to protect themselves from fire or emergency.

The overwhelming majority of fire departments in the USA are volunteer.  By the numbers, most firefighters are volunteer.  In terms of assets covered by volunteer vs. paid departments, volunteer wins if you count only property held by individuals (this one is flimsy, because you end up discounting most of the dense urban real estate of big cities like NY).  Almost 100% of the funding for those volunteer departments is from local property taxes.  Hell, almost 100% of the funding from the paid departments also comes from local property taxes.

Volunteer departments will tend to have better gear and apparatus, because they are free of the heavy pension load of the paid departments.  Some are even able to compensate the firefighters a nominal amount per year to cover transportation costs, etc.

There's even a handful of locations where fire service is provided by private contract, and you contract with a local fire provider (many of these are not great, but some of them can go toe-to-toe with any other arrangement).

The fire department is about as libertarian as it gets.  In fact, in places where the tax for the FD is called out separately and is optional, the FD will respond if your house is on fire and you opted out, but only to make sure it doesn't spread to your neighbors.  This is backed up as legal and correct in several court cases.

But only liberals have facts, so I assume you knew this already.

Yes, I did know this, given that most friends of mine who belong to fire departments do so on a volunteer basis.

Not so in large cities, though. But large cities are full of liberals, who don't matter as much as "real" Americans, right?

(See, I can do that, too.)
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: shenlong55 on January 30, 2017, 10:39:14 AM
The fire department is about as libertarian as it gets.  In fact, in places where the tax for the FD is called out separately and is optional, the FD will respond if your house is on fire and you opted out, but only to make sure it doesn't spread to your neighbors.  This is backed up as legal and correct in several court cases.

This seems like a horrible position to put firefighters into.  If I were a firefighter standing outside a burning building where I knew I could save lives/prevent destruction, but I can't just because someone didn't pay an optional tax I would feel horrible...
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Kris on January 30, 2017, 11:16:28 AM
The fire department is about as libertarian as it gets.  In fact, in places where the tax for the FD is called out separately and is optional, the FD will respond if your house is on fire and you opted out, but only to make sure it doesn't spread to your neighbors.  This is backed up as legal and correct in several court cases.

This seems like a horrible position to put firefighters into.  If I were a firefighter standing outside a burning building where I knew I could save lives/prevent destruction, but I can't just because someone didn't pay an optional tax I would feel horrible...

Yeah, not to mention: way to foster a general "welp, he needs help, but that's not my problem" attitude that's growing in a hell of a lot of ways in this country. With effects that I think we're only just beginning to see.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Classical_Liberal on January 31, 2017, 12:57:08 PM
Bottom line:  Even though the economy is growing, energy consumption is declining.  There are lots of reason for this, not all of them have to do with government policy, but many of them do.  Some of those reasons include renewable portfolio standards created by the various states, subsidies on the federal and local level for renewables, increases in energy efficiency standards for everything from light bulbs, to cars, to HVAC equipment, loan guarantees for various renewables including nuclear.  Not to mention millions of government buildings and public housing have been upgraded for energy efficiency.  The DOE renewable portfolio has had a few failures like Solyndra, and even more successes like Tesla.   The result is that  wind-energy prices have fallen by 66 percent, utility-scale solar-energy prices by 75 percent, and electric-car-battery costs by 65 percent.  You can see if those trends continue even a while longer the carbon-based economy will become a pale shadow of its former self.  It is already happening in dramatic fashion and in a very short period of time.

Thank you for that data, admittedly I have not yet spent the time to sift through it all, it's my list. 

A libertarian would argue that the reductions seen are largely market driven, not ONLY more natural gas, but a change in consumer sentiment, corporate responsibility, new technology, etc.

I think most libertarians would acknowledge the need for government to maintain a balanced playing field.  This includes punishing those who take resources from, or cause harm to individuals without consent.  Climate change (and other regional/global environmental issues) are perfect examples of a situation where individuals and companies are causing harm to others without consent.  That being said, how government should level the playing field it up for debate.  A standard practice is something like the EPA, which provides a large regulatory puzzle to minimize damage.  This solution inherently creates bureaucracy, promotes crony capitalism, and creates barriers of entry for individuals and smaller groups to provide solutions. 

A more market based solution would be to abolish the EPA and spend less resources to simply tax the offender's, raising prices and driving down demand.  Utilizing the taxes earned specifically to repair the damage in conjunction with public education (ie make sure the scientific knowledge of consequences is available for consumers to make informed decisions).  A good example of this strategy in use was cigarette smoking.  Fine those companies responsible, earmark those fines to provide education to consumers.  Tax the product so that revenue can be raised from those who choose smoke to cover the cost of their future illness.  This protects individuals who choose to not smoke from having to pay for the informed choices of the new potential smokers and simultaneously drives down demand for the product. Look at smoking rates! Personally, I also think those who purposely hid the scientific knowledge should also be prosecuted criminally, I do not recall that happening (cronyism?)

Yeah, not to mention: way to foster a general "welp, he needs help, but that's not my problem" attitude that's growing in a hell of a lot of ways in this country. With effects that I think we're only just beginning to see.

A long, but fascinating doc you may enjoy regarding why people tend to think this way. 

Ask wealthy people how they became wealthy.  With the answer, "We were lucky", one thinks they are being humble.  Ask a homeless person the same question, "We were unlucky", one thinks they are liars or lazy...
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t1MqJPHxy6g
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Metric Mouse on February 01, 2017, 11:32:31 PM
The fire department is about as libertarian as it gets.  In fact, in places where the tax for the FD is called out separately and is optional, the FD will respond if your house is on fire and you opted out, but only to make sure it doesn't spread to your neighbors.  This is backed up as legal and correct in several court cases.

This seems like a horrible position to put firefighters into.  If I were a firefighter standing outside a burning building where I knew I could save lives/prevent destruction, but I can't just because someone didn't pay an optional tax I would feel horrible...

Yeah, not to mention: way to foster a general "welp, he needs help, but that's not my problem" attitude that's growing in a hell of a lot of ways in this country. With effects that I think we're only just beginning to see.
Should all taxes be optional in this case? I mean if one should get all the benefits of living in society without paying their due taxes, why would anyone pay taxes?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: cheapass on February 02, 2017, 07:44:22 AM
The fire department is about as libertarian as it gets.  In fact, in places where the tax for the FD is called out separately and is optional, the FD will respond if your house is on fire and you opted out, but only to make sure it doesn't spread to your neighbors.  This is backed up as legal and correct in several court cases.

This seems like a horrible position to put firefighters into.  If I were a firefighter standing outside a burning building where I knew I could save lives/prevent destruction, but I can't just because someone didn't pay an optional tax I would feel horrible...

Yeah, not to mention: way to foster a general "welp, he needs help, but that's not my problem" attitude that's growing in a hell of a lot of ways in this country. With effects that I think we're only just beginning to see.
Should all taxes be optional in this case? I mean if one should get all the benefits of living in society without paying their due taxes, why would anyone pay taxes?

That's debatable. Hardcore libertarians (probably more accurately described as anarchists) would say yes, the only valid interaction is a voluntary one. I'm of the opinion that minimum government of national defense (NOT imperial nation-building), infrastructure, and law enforcement is pretty much mandatory.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Metric Mouse on February 02, 2017, 10:21:01 PM
The fire department is about as libertarian as it gets.  In fact, in places where the tax for the FD is called out separately and is optional, the FD will respond if your house is on fire and you opted out, but only to make sure it doesn't spread to your neighbors.  This is backed up as legal and correct in several court cases.

This seems like a horrible position to put firefighters into.  If I were a firefighter standing outside a burning building where I knew I could save lives/prevent destruction, but I can't just because someone didn't pay an optional tax I would feel horrible...

Yeah, not to mention: way to foster a general "welp, he needs help, but that's not my problem" attitude that's growing in a hell of a lot of ways in this country. With effects that I think we're only just beginning to see.
Should all taxes be optional in this case? I mean if one should get all the benefits of living in society without paying their due taxes, why would anyone pay taxes?

That's debatable. Hardcore libertarians (probably more accurately described as anarchists) would say yes, the only valid interaction is a voluntary one. I'm of the opinion that minimum government of national defense (NOT imperial nation-building), infrastructure, and law enforcement is pretty much mandatory.
Good point. I can see in the context of this thread it was probably a silly question...
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Telecaster on February 03, 2017, 01:07:34 AM

A more market based solution would be to abolish the EPA and spend less resources to simply tax the offender's, raising prices and driving down demand.  Utilizing the taxes earned specifically to repair the damage in conjunction with public education (ie make sure the scientific knowledge of consequences is available for consumers to make informed decisions).  A good example of this strategy in use was cigarette smoking.  Fine those companies responsible, earmark those fines to provide education to consumers.  Tax the product so that revenue can be raised from those who choose smoke to cover the cost of their future illness.  This protects individuals who choose to not smoke from having to pay for the informed choices of the new potential smokers and simultaneously drives down demand for the product. Look at smoking rates! Personally, I also think those who purposely hid the scientific knowledge should also be prosecuted criminally, I do not recall that happening (cronyism?)

I heartily agree that for this particular issue (climate change) market solutions are the way to go.  In fact, market solutions ultimately are the only things that will work.  I'd add a block and tackle to your carbon tax, and use the same market solution that was used to reduce sulfur dioxide:    Cap and trade.  That created a market for saving.  So industries that could easily reduce SO2 did so, and sold their credits to industries that couldn't.  Worked better than anyone expected.  But that has nothing to do with EPA, nor would a carbon tax.  That falls on Congress.

One thing I sometimes here on this board and elsewhere is something along the lines of "We should abolish the IRS and have a flat tax!"  Sounds great. .Everyone hates taxes and everyone hates the IRS.  Except that as a minimum you still need a group of people at the Treasure Dept to accept the incoming money, process the W2s and 1099s, perform audits, and set policy about how exactly to define income (a very difficult task),  maintain the computer infrastructure, and everything else  So even if there was a flat tax you have to replicate everything the IRS would do, only call it something different.

Same thing here.  It sounds great to eliminate a bunch of bureaucracy and institute a simple carbon tax.  Now you have to figure out who is emitting the carbon, how to tax them, how to measure carbon in a consistent way, figure out possible exceptions (emergency generators at hospitals?  the military?) how to detect cheaters, on and on.  In other words, you would need a government agency exactly like EPA. 

Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on February 03, 2017, 06:24:35 AM

A more market based solution would be to abolish the EPA and spend less resources to simply tax the offender's, raising prices and driving down demand.  Utilizing the taxes earned specifically to repair the damage in conjunction with public education (ie make sure the scientific knowledge of consequences is available for consumers to make informed decisions).  A good example of this strategy in use was cigarette smoking.  Fine those companies responsible, earmark those fines to provide education to consumers.  Tax the product so that revenue can be raised from those who choose smoke to cover the cost of their future illness.  This protects individuals who choose to not smoke from having to pay for the informed choices of the new potential smokers and simultaneously drives down demand for the product. Look at smoking rates! Personally, I also think those who purposely hid the scientific knowledge should also be prosecuted criminally, I do not recall that happening (cronyism?)

I heartily agree that for this particular issue (climate change) market solutions are the way to go.  In fact, market solutions ultimately are the only things that will work.  I'd add a block and tackle to your carbon tax, and use the same market solution that was used to reduce sulfur dioxide:    Cap and trade.  That created a market for saving.  So industries that could easily reduce SO2 did so, and sold their credits to industries that couldn't.  Worked better than anyone expected.  But that has nothing to do with EPA, nor would a carbon tax.  That falls on Congress.

One thing I sometimes here on this board and elsewhere is something along the lines of "We should abolish the IRS and have a flat tax!"  Sounds great. .Everyone hates taxes and everyone hates the IRS.  Except that as a minimum you still need a group of people at the Treasure Dept to accept the incoming money, process the W2s and 1099s, perform audits, and set policy about how exactly to define income (a very difficult task),  maintain the computer infrastructure, and everything else  So even if there was a flat tax you have to replicate everything the IRS would do, only call it something different.

Same thing here.  It sounds great to eliminate a bunch of bureaucracy and institute a simple carbon tax.  Now you have to figure out who is emitting the carbon, how to tax them, how to measure carbon in a consistent way, figure out possible exceptions (emergency generators at hospitals?  the military?) how to detect cheaters, on and on.  In other words, you would need a government agency exactly like EPA.

It is a mistake to assume that environmental problems can be solved by a free market approach.  To be fair, a tax on pollution depends on absolute knowledge of the total long term cost of that pollution.

Free Market Approach:
Company A builds high end floppy dildos and as part of manufacturing releases gas G into the air.  Gas G is known to cause significant damage to species of tree T (of no known economic benefit).  Company A is charged X$ based on current projections of damage that gas G will cause.  Company A does the cost/benefit calculation and figures that paying X is a reasonable cost of doing business, so they continue to release G.  One hundred years later, it turns out that G has wiped out species of tree T.  Species of tree T is the only known source of a cure for the new airborne superCancerAIDS disease that is wiping out humanity.  Company A has long since gone out of business due to the popularity of artisan crafted hand carved dildos.

Without a free market approach:
Company A builds high end dildos and as part of manufacturing releases gas G into the air.  Gas G is known to cause significant damage to species of tree T.  When the damage to tree T population is discovered, the government bans the use of G.  Company A figures out a more expensive but less environmentally damaging way to manufacture floppy dildos.  One hundred years later, tree T (formerly of no known economic benefit) saves most of humanity from superCancerAIDS.


Private companies can't be held liable for the true cost of their actions unless you have knowledge of the future.  It's just not possible to calculate all the costs involved when wiping out a species or changing the environment.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: LalsConstant on February 03, 2017, 07:08:34 AM
It is a mistake to assume that environmental problems can be solved by a free market approach.  To be fair, a tax on pollution depends on absolute knowledge of the total long term cost of that pollution.

Free Market Approach:
Company A builds high end floppy dildos and as part of manufacturing releases gas G into the air.  Gas G is known to cause significant damage to species of tree T (of no known economic benefit).  Company A is charged X$ based on current projections of damage that gas G will cause.  Company A does the cost/benefit calculation and figures that paying X is a reasonable cost of doing business, so they continue to release G.  One hundred years later, it turns out that G has wiped out species of tree T.  Species of tree T is the only known source of a cure for the new airborne superCancerAIDS disease that is wiping out humanity.  Company A has long since gone out of business due to the popularity of artisan crafted hand carved dildos.

This ignores the probable effects on the company due to the laws of economics.  The company cannot continue selling its product in the same quantity at a higher price even if it had a monopoly on marital aids, and the substitution effect (such as high end personal escorts perhaps) would kick in and divert even more of their business. 

Most products and services are usually not viable once it goes above a certain price due to various economic phenomena, even if where that price is set by the free market is already quite high.  Even monopolies can't raise their prices too much or they just collapse (if a copy of Windows cost forty five million dollars for example, Microsoft would fold very soon unless it quickly lowered its prices again).


Without a free market approach:
Company A builds high end dildos and as part of manufacturing releases gas G into the air.  Gas G is known to cause significant damage to species of tree T.  When the damage to tree T population is discovered, the government bans the use of G.  Company A figures out a more expensive but less environmentally damaging way to manufacture floppy dildos.  One hundred years later, tree T (formerly of no known economic benefit) saves most of humanity from superCancerAIDS.

This presumes that the government knows Gas G is actually bad, and it's not based on a hysterical study about Gas G causing the shakes which is later discredited, but the law remains in place because of special interest lobbyists from the people who make alternatives to gas G, inertia, lack of political incentive to repeal it, etc.

It also suggests that the decision making power of a small group of people is greater than the decision making power of a large group of people.


Private companies can't be held liable for the true cost of their actions unless you have knowledge of the future.  It's just not possible to calculate all the costs involved when wiping out a species or changing the environment.

While this is true in the absolute sense, it's not an argument against a free market solution being the best one.  No one has perfect knowledge of anything, however you harness more knowledge by opening the decision making to more and more people.

Think of it this way: actively managed mutual funds rarely beat a simple index fund because the index fund harnesses the knowledge of an entire market, while the active fund draws on a much smaller pool of expertise.

When you pick an active fund (i.e. a government bureaucracy) to manage your investments, you may get lucky and beat the market, however you're far more likely to underperform it if anything.  You also have to deal with the fact the fund managers are more loyal to their employers than they are to you, the fund management will change over time, it will demand more staff and higher compensation, it will lose sight of its original goal, etc.

Or you can buy an index fund (i.e. the entire market) and realize while it might not beat the highest performers, it's going to be the best overall solution relative to how much it costs and what you get for the investment.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on February 03, 2017, 07:38:07 AM
It is a mistake to assume that environmental problems can be solved by a free market approach.  To be fair, a tax on pollution depends on absolute knowledge of the total long term cost of that pollution.

Free Market Approach:
Company A builds high end floppy dildos and as part of manufacturing releases gas G into the air.  Gas G is known to cause significant damage to species of tree T (of no known economic benefit).  Company A is charged X$ based on current projections of damage that gas G will cause.  Company A does the cost/benefit calculation and figures that paying X is a reasonable cost of doing business, so they continue to release G.  One hundred years later, it turns out that G has wiped out species of tree T.  Species of tree T is the only known source of a cure for the new airborne superCancerAIDS disease that is wiping out humanity.  Company A has long since gone out of business due to the popularity of artisan crafted hand carved dildos.

This ignores the probable effects on the company due to the laws of economics.  The company cannot continue selling its product in the same quantity at a higher price even if it had a monopoly on marital aids, and the substitution effect (such as high end personal escorts perhaps) would kick in and divert even more of their business. 

Most products and services are usually not viable once it goes above a certain price due to various economic phenomena, even if where that price is set by the free market is already quite high.  Even monopolies can't raise their prices too much or they just collapse (if a copy of Windows cost forty five million dollars for example, Microsoft would fold very soon unless it quickly lowered its prices again).

Agreed.  All of this depends on the price being raised high enough though.  In the example, there would be no economic justification to raise the price this high . . . because the economic value of T is not high.



Without a free market approach:
Company A builds high end dildos and as part of manufacturing releases gas G into the air.  Gas G is known to cause significant damage to species of tree T.  When the damage to tree T population is discovered, the government bans the use of G.  Company A figures out a more expensive but less environmentally damaging way to manufacture floppy dildos.  One hundred years later, tree T (formerly of no known economic benefit) saves most of humanity from superCancerAIDS.

This presumes that the government knows Gas G is actually bad, and it's not based on a hysterical study about Gas G causing the shakes which is later discredited, but the law remains in place because of special interest lobbyists from the people who make alternatives to gas G, inertia, lack of political incentive to repeal it, etc.

Yes.  Both examples presume that the effect of G is known.  It's not possible to control for something if you don't know the cause.


It also suggests that the decision making power of a small group of people is greater than the decision making power of a large group of people.

How so?  What small and large groups of people are you referring to?


Private companies can't be held liable for the true cost of their actions unless you have knowledge of the future.  It's just not possible to calculate all the costs involved when wiping out a species or changing the environment.

While this is true in the absolute sense, it's not an argument against a free market solution being the best one.  No one has perfect knowledge of anything, however you harness more knowledge by opening the decision making to more and more people.

How is the decision making open to more people?  There are three groups of people in both cases; the public, the private industry, the government.

In both examples given, the public is free to investigate the issue to their heart's content.  In a regulated approach, democratic governments make decisions based on public input so if enough interest is received this will change how the problem is handled.  In a free market approach the public decides what to buy, so if enough interest is received and if the interest outweighs the interest for the product this will reduce demand for the goods that the company produces.  The problem with depending on the public to investigate and understand these issues is that there are very few people qualified to do so . . . and then from that pool there are even fewer people who care to do so.

Private industry has a notorious track record of suppressing information that could be damaging to business.  They cannot be reliably depended upon to make a decision in the best interests of the public if there is any chance that more profit will be made otherwise.

Finally, we have the government.  In both cases given the government would be monitoring the situation.  In the first case the government attaches a monetary value to the trees being wiped out (which requires guessing about potential future value and current economic impact).  In the second case, the government simply prevents use of chemical G because of the potential issues caused by loss of T.

Whatever way I look at it, the same number of people are involved in making a decision.


Think of it this way: actively managed mutual funds rarely beat a simple index fund because the index fund harnesses the knowledge of an entire market, while the active fund draws on a much smaller pool of expertise.

When you pick an active fund (i.e. a government bureaucracy) to manage your investments, you may get lucky and beat the market, however you're far more likely to underperform it if anything.  You also have to deal with the fact the fund managers are more loyal to their employers than they are to you, the fund management will change over time, it will demand more staff and higher compensation, it will lose sight of its original goal, etc.

Or you can buy an index fund (i.e. the entire market) and realize while it might not beat the highest performers, it's going to be the best overall solution relative to how much it costs and what you get for the investment.

The same number of people are involved in making the decision in both cases, so your basic premise here is flawed.  In addition to that though, plants and animals aren't mutual funds.

* When a company goes bankrupt another company can simply take it's place.  When something goes extinct, there may not be anything that can ever take it's place again.
* Mutual funds (and the stock market in general) depend on constant growth.  This is a totally different model than in the natural world, where constant growth invariably leads to restricted resources and is followed by massive death.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: robartsd on February 03, 2017, 09:12:57 AM
Agreed.  All of this depends on the price being raised high enough though.  In the example, there would be no economic justification to raise the price this high . . . because the economic value of T is not high.
Nobody is saying that the economic value of T is the only justification for raising the tax. Protecting the environment could be justification enough. If X is not enough to slow emissions of gas G to a point where damage to tree T is no longer threatening the long term viability of the species then that can be justification for increasing X.

Your hypothetical ban on gas G makes the assumption that the environmental impact of the new process is known. We often only discover environmental damage of new industrial processes only long after they are put to widespread use, so the solution you propose is also dependent on knowing the future.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on February 03, 2017, 11:07:56 AM
Agreed.  All of this depends on the price being raised high enough though.  In the example, there would be no economic justification to raise the price this high . . . because the economic value of T is not high.
Nobody is saying that the economic value of T is the only justification for raising the tax. Protecting the environment could be justification enough. If X is not enough to slow emissions of gas G to a point where damage to tree T is no longer threatening the long term viability of the species then that can be justification for increasing X.

If you're going to value the environment at a price high enough to prevent industries from damaging it, then I don't see any real difference between what is being proposed and what currently goes on.  At that point it's no longer a tax, it's really a ban anyway.



Your hypothetical ban on gas G makes the assumption that the environmental impact of the new process is known. We often only discover environmental damage of new industrial processes only long after they are put to widespread use, so the solution you propose is also dependent on knowing the future.

If there's no known problem then it won't be fixed, regardless of what approach (free market or government) is taken.  Your hypothetical renders the whole question of how to handle the issue moot.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Telecaster on February 03, 2017, 11:37:09 AM

It is a mistake to assume that environmental problems can be solved by a free market approach.  To be fair, a tax on pollution depends on absolute knowledge of the total long term cost of that pollution.


I didn't say "free market solution."  I said "market solution."  :)
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: robartsd on February 03, 2017, 03:10:52 PM
If you're going to value the environment at a price high enough to prevent industries from damaging it, then I don't see any real difference between what is being proposed and what currently goes on.  At that point it's no longer a tax, it's really a ban anyway.
A ban says none is allowed - a high tax encourages the market to look for other solutions. Perhaps gas G is currently being released at 100 units, which is enough to eventually wipe out tree T, but after reducing to 20 units, the population of tree T starts to recover. Using a tax, you can make it economically infeasible to emit more that 20 units without a ban. This finds a balance between protecting the environment and economic activity. While you could argue that cap and trade does the same thing, how do you distribute the credit for the 20 available units? I imagine that insiders and established players would have more advantage over new competition in a cap and trade scenario than would be the case in a direct tax scenario.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: davef on February 06, 2017, 04:18:46 PM
Me.  Still hoping for the 4 years of Ron Paul that this country needs.

^
This.
I voted for Johnson
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on February 08, 2017, 05:42:32 PM
Me.  Still hoping for the 4 years of Ron Paul that this country needs.

^
This.
I voted for Johnson

I've donated money to Ron Paul's campaigns in the past.  I think he'd be an ideal president.

That being said, Johnson is nothing like him.

Ron Paul is a very smart individual.  Johnson?  Not so much.  That's letting aside all the policy differences and nuances.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: dividendman on February 08, 2017, 06:42:38 PM
I think there is a glimmer of hope here that while Ron Paul won't be president, Trump will abuse the office so thoroughly that Congress and the Judiciary will curtail Executive power.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Rufus.T.Firefly on February 09, 2017, 07:33:53 AM
Me.  Still hoping for the 4 years of Ron Paul that this country needs.

^
This.
I voted for Johnson

I've donated money to Ron Paul's campaigns in the past.  I think he'd be an ideal president.

That being said, Johnson is nothing like him.

Ron Paul is a very smart individual.  Johnson?  Not so much.  That's letting aside all the policy differences and nuances.

Agreed. I voted for Johnson, but the more he talked, the less I liked him. I'm still not sure why the ticket wasn't reversed with Weld running for the presidency and Johnson as VP.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: cheapass on February 09, 2017, 08:15:23 AM
I've donated money to Ron Paul's campaigns in the past.  I think he'd be an ideal president.

That being said, Johnson is nothing like him.

Ron Paul is a very smart individual.  Johnson?  Not so much.  That's letting aside all the policy differences and nuances.

I think Gary smokes too much of the devil's lettuce.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: MoonLiteNite on February 11, 2017, 03:23:44 AM
Government may be great and one of the best things ever.

Now, if it is so great, don't FORCE people to join in, but allow people to pay their taxes and get their firefighters and EMS and roads. For the rest of us, let us burn on fire, die of heart attacks and not trespass on your government owned roads :)

Great ideas don't require force.

Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on February 11, 2017, 10:16:51 AM
Government may be great and one of the best things ever.

Now, if it is so great, don't FORCE people to join in, but allow people to pay their taxes and get their firefighters and EMS and roads. For the rest of us, let us burn on fire, die of heart attacks and not trespass on your government owned roads :)

Great ideas don't require force.

If you walk into a restaurant, sit down at a table, open the menu tell the waiter what you want to eat, finish eating, then leave have you done something wrong?  Would it be wrong for the restaurant owner to force you to pay for what you've taken, even if you didn't explicitly say that you were going to pay the price of the meal before hand?  You've enjoyed the food, it's understood that you're going to pay for the bill.

Similarly, when you choose to live in a place with common societal benefits you are agreeing to pay for them.  Simply living in a place where crime is policed is better for you (and everyone else), even if police aren't specifically called to your home every evening.  You've enjoyed the police service, now you're complaining that someone wants you to pay the bill.

There is no real force here.

Nobody is forcing you to accept the social contract.  You can opt out by leaving the country.  You can opt out by choosing to earn less money so that you're taxed at a lower rate.  You can opt out by running for office and changing the system.

The only think you can't do is skip out on the bill afterwards.  That's unreasonable, and I'm sure the restaurant owner would find it just as unreasonable as the tax collector does.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Rufus.T.Firefly on February 11, 2017, 12:54:37 PM
Government may be great and one of the best things ever.

Now, if it is so great, don't FORCE people to join in, but allow people to pay their taxes and get their firefighters and EMS and roads. For the rest of us, let us burn on fire, die of heart attacks and not trespass on your government owned roads :)

Great ideas don't require force.

This doesn't work for public goods that are non-excludable. All of the population will receive equal benefit of public safety, national defense, clean air, regardless of whether they choose to participate.

You can allow people to self-select with certain services and I think it could be a good idea for certain non-essential programs, but it will not work for many of the fundamental functions of government.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on February 12, 2017, 04:51:19 PM
I think there is a glimmer of hope here that while Ron Paul won't be president, Trump will abuse the office so thoroughly that Congress and the Judiciary will curtail Executive power.

That would be amazing.  So far, Congress though has seemed to want to do nothing but back his every decision, so I'm not hopeful.

Maybe post-2018 midterms.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Metric Mouse on February 13, 2017, 01:07:27 AM
Government may be great and one of the best things ever.

Now, if it is so great, don't FORCE people to join in, but allow people to pay their taxes and get their firefighters and EMS and roads. For the rest of us, let us burn on fire, die of heart attacks and not trespass on your government owned roads :)

Great ideas don't require force.

If you walk into a restaurant, sit down at a table, open the menu tell the waiter what you want to eat, finish eating, then leave have you done something wrong?  Would it be wrong for the restaurant owner to force you to pay for what you've taken, even if you didn't explicitly say that you were going to pay the price of the meal before hand?  You've enjoyed the food, it's understood that you're going to pay for the bill.

Similarly, when you choose to live in a place with common societal benefits you are agreeing to pay for them.  Simply living in a place where crime is policed is better for you (and everyone else), even if police aren't specifically called to your home every evening.  You've enjoyed the police service, now you're complaining that someone wants you to pay the bill.

There is no real force here.

Nobody is forcing you to accept the social contract.  You can opt out by leaving the country.  You can opt out by choosing to earn less money so that you're taxed at a lower rate.  You can opt out by running for office and changing the system.

The only think you can't do is skip out on the bill afterwards.  That's unreasonable, and I'm sure the restaurant owner would find it just as unreasonable as the tax collector does.
I would say it would be fine to skip out on the bill if one were unable to afford it. Not everyone can afford to pay for things like this, and forcing them to do so is not beneficial.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on February 13, 2017, 03:25:35 AM
I would say it would be fine to skip out on the bill if one were unable to afford it. Not everyone can afford to pay for things like this, and forcing them to do so is not beneficial.

Good thing we make income taxes inherently affordable, so not only those who can't afford it don't have to pay, but they get money back, and only those that can afford it pay!  :)
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Metric Mouse on February 15, 2017, 11:40:11 PM
I would say it would be fine to skip out on the bill if one were unable to afford it. Not everyone can afford to pay for things like this, and forcing them to do so is not beneficial.

Good thing we make income taxes inherently affordable, so not only those who can't afford it don't have to pay, but they get money back, and only those that can afford it pay!  :)
Exactly so. Not paying is hardly a problem.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: MoonLiteNite on February 25, 2017, 02:56:19 AM
Government may be great and one of the best things ever.

Now, if it is so great, don't FORCE people to join in, but allow people to pay their taxes and get their firefighters and EMS and roads. For the rest of us, let us burn on fire, die of heart attacks and not trespass on your government owned roads :)

Great ideas don't require force.
If you walk into a restaurant, sit down at a table, open the menu tell the waiter what you want to eat, finish eating, then leave have you done something wrong?  Would it be wrong for the restaurant owner to force you to pay for what you've taken, even if you didn't explicitly say that you were going to pay the price of the meal before hand?  You've enjoyed the food, it's understood that you're going to pay for the bill.

That is called theft.....

Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on February 25, 2017, 02:58:07 AM
Government may be great and one of the best things ever.

Now, if it is so great, don't FORCE people to join in, but allow people to pay their taxes and get their firefighters and EMS and roads. For the rest of us, let us burn on fire, die of heart attacks and not trespass on your government owned roads :)

Great ideas don't require force.
If you walk into a restaurant, sit down at a table, open the menu tell the waiter what you want to eat, finish eating, then leave have you done something wrong?  Would it be wrong for the restaurant owner to force you to pay for what you've taken, even if you didn't explicitly say that you were going to pay the price of the meal before hand?  You've enjoyed the food, it's understood that you're going to pay for the bill.

That is called theft.....

Right. As is using public things such as military protection, roads, contract enforcement (courts), etc. without paying taxes.  Taxes are the bill for those items, just like the bill for your food.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on February 25, 2017, 06:59:32 AM
But I am a hypothetical pacifist / hermit and I don't want to purchase those things.  Making someone buy things they don't want is not libertarian.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Metric Mouse on February 25, 2017, 01:15:33 PM
But I am a hypothetical pacifist / hermit and I don't want to purchase those things.  Making someone buy things they don't want is not libertarian.
No, that would be the afordable care act.

A true hermit would not pay taxes.  They would live in the wild, with no declarable income, use no services, and receive no benefits from society. I suppose someone would argue clean air/water yadda yadds, but a true hermit would live far enough from people that they would not be affected, and regulations are really to clean up the effects of other peoples consumption (no factories or coal pollution if everyone was a self sufficient hermit), which would not be caused by said hermit. I see few reasons a true hermit would need to pay taxes, or be compelled to under our current system.

On the other hand, since everyone in society benefits from taxes, I would like to see a small flat tax on all citizens to complement the graduated income tax, so that everyone pays for their meal. I would easily pay an extra $1000 per year for all the benefits I recieve if it meant an extra grand from everyone else in the country.  since every citizen gets many many times more benefit than this, I think the extra revenue is not only fair, but one hell of a deal.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GueroKC on February 25, 2017, 01:46:41 PM
I leaned libertarian in my youth. So many of the core tenets make so much sense when one is not yet jaded. Two concerns have caused me to lean more toward the progressive liberal side of things as I've aged:

1) Corporate hegemony. Large corporations do what they want when they want today, and that's WITH the regulation and oversight that libertarians love to rail against. It's hard for me to imagine a libertarian utopia that doesn't devolve into a consumerist hellscape in only a few generations. Rampant, targeted marketing to children would turn us all into sucka consumers.

2) The environment. Libertarians dislike communal property, rightly believing it to be a backhand way to force people to behave in a way they don't agree with. Even if one does not believe in human-driven climate change, humanity long-ago became capable of polluting the waters and air in such a way that the damaging effects spread far and wide. The air we breathe and the water we need to live are communal property.

Unfortunately for my formerly libertarian leaning self, trying to reconcile libertarian ideals and with a system of government capable of protecting that communal property is seemingly impossible.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on February 25, 2017, 02:25:41 PM
But I am a hypothetical pacifist / hermit and I don't want to purchase those things.  Making someone buy things they don't want is not libertarian.

Uh huh.

Besides the clean air/water they're benefiting from, were they born in the wild? Or were they born in a hospital, with roads leading to it, and doctors?  Do they have magical control of never getting sick/injured in the future and possibly needing a hospital?  What about the forest fire firefighters that save their life? The laws that make it so the game they're killing aren't extinct, because hunting licenses and seasons?  And you can be a pacifist all you want, but you probably don't want people just taking "your" things.

I mean, you can come up with ever more ridiculous scenarios of how isolated this person is, and I can come up with ever more ridiculous stretches on how they're still affected by society, but what's the point? 

Even if I grant your hypothetical, that there exists some individual who uses no services, the fact would be that they'd also be paying no taxes. So they aren't an example of someone getting "forced" to pay for the goods of society that they don't use.

I don't see how one can plausibly claim there is anyone paying taxes that don't benefit from society/government. And taxes are the bill for those benefits.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on February 25, 2017, 05:07:20 PM
Whether one benefits or not should have no bearing on things.  If I don't want ACME protection co. why should one be forced to "buy" it.  Can I, as a private person force anyone to buy anything?  You can't delegate a power you don't have in the first place.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on February 25, 2017, 06:26:12 PM
Whether one benefits or not should have no bearing on things.  If I don't want ACME protection co. why should one be forced to "buy" it.  Can I, as a private person force anyone to buy anything?  You can't delegate a power you don't have in the first place.

I ate the food, why should I be forced to pay for it?  Well . . . because otherwise you're a thief.

As has been mentioned several times, the choice to avail yourself of what society has to offer is purely up to you.  If you choose of your own free will to use the services by staying in the country then you obviously place value in them.  Stop pretending anyone is forcing you to do anything.  If you don't want to pay the bill, don't eat the food.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Metric Mouse on February 25, 2017, 06:29:51 PM
Whether one benefits or not should have no bearing on things.  If I don't want ACME protection co. why should one be forced to "buy" it.  Can I, as a private person force anyone to buy anything?  You can't delegate a power you don't have in the first place.

I ate the food, why should I be forced to pay for it?  Well . . . because otherwise you're a thief.

As has been mentioned several times, the choice to avail yourself of what society has to offer is purely up to you.  If you choose of your own free will to use the services by staying in the country then you obviously place value in them.  Stop pretending anyone is forcing you to do anything.  If you don't want to pay the bill, don't eat the food.
Or don't pay the bill. If one can not afford the bill, there is no reason to pay, or to be called a theif for such a thing. Of course it would be better if everybody paid, but the fact that they don't doesn't really effect the positive benefits for everyone.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on February 25, 2017, 06:40:26 PM
Whether one benefits or not should have no bearing on things.  If I don't want ACME protection co. why should one be forced to "buy" it.  Can I, as a private person force anyone to buy anything?  You can't delegate a power you don't have in the first place.

I ate the food, why should I be forced to pay for it?  Well . . . because otherwise you're a thief.

As has been mentioned several times, the choice to avail yourself of what society has to offer is purely up to you.  If you choose of your own free will to use the services by staying in the country then you obviously place value in them.  Stop pretending anyone is forcing you to do anything.  If you don't want to pay the bill, don't eat the food.
Or don't pay the bill. If one can not afford the bill, there is no reason to pay, or to be called a theif for such a thing. Of course it would be better if everybody paid, but the fact that they don't doesn't really effect the positive benefits for everyone.

That's why taxation of income is such an awesome system (as typically implemented).  The only people who have to pay are rich enough to easily afford it.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Metric Mouse on February 25, 2017, 06:44:13 PM
It truly is an awesome system.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Spiritual_Lobotomy on February 25, 2017, 07:08:10 PM
Im a Star Trek Libertarian
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on February 25, 2017, 07:24:25 PM
Whether one benefits or not should have no bearing on things.  If I don't want ACME protection co. why should one be forced to "buy" it.  Can I, as a private person force anyone to buy anything?  You can't delegate a power you don't have in the first place.

I ate the food, why should I be forced to pay for it?  Well . . . because otherwise you're a thief.

As has been mentioned several times, the choice to avail yourself of what society has to offer is purely up to you.  If you choose of your own free will to use the services by staying in the country then you obviously place value in them.  Stop pretending anyone is forcing you to do anything.  If you don't want to pay the bill, don't eat the food.
You decide to give me a service and send me a bill for it.  You are the thief not me.  I DID NOT order it and I will not pay for it.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: sol on February 25, 2017, 07:51:58 PM
You decide to give me a service and send me a bill for it.  You are the thief not me.  I DID NOT order it and I will not pay for it.

Why did you use it if you didn't order it?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on February 25, 2017, 08:08:41 PM
Whether one benefits or not should have no bearing on things.  If I don't want ACME protection co. why should one be forced to "buy" it.  Can I, as a private person force anyone to buy anything?  You can't delegate a power you don't have in the first place.

I ate the food, why should I be forced to pay for it?  Well . . . because otherwise you're a thief.

As has been mentioned several times, the choice to avail yourself of what society has to offer is purely up to you.  If you choose of your own free will to use the services by staying in the country then you obviously place value in them.  Stop pretending anyone is forcing you to do anything.  If you don't want to pay the bill, don't eat the food.
You decide to give me a service and send me a bill for it.  You are the thief not me.  I DID NOT order it and I will not pay for it.
Why didn't you leave then, instead of eating the food?  Pay for what you've eaten so far (I.e. current taxes due), and then leave and stop eating the food, rather than getting upset when you keep getting billed for it.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on February 25, 2017, 08:15:38 PM
Can I come over to your house, cut your grass, and then send you a bill for it when you didn't order it?  NO.
Your bill is invalid, we have no contract.  Your bill collectors are mobsters in an extortion racket.

This is not difficult to grasp.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on February 25, 2017, 08:24:26 PM


Can I come over to your house, cut your grass, and then send you a bill for it when you didn't order it?  NO.
Your bill is invalid, we have no contract.  Your bill collectors are mobsters in an extortion racket.

This is not difficult to grasp.

You are at our buffet (in our society), eating our food (taking advantage of all the services we have).

Leave if you don't want to pay the bill for that food (services).

This is not difficult to grasp.

To more directly address your analogy: your house is not an island to itself, it's in our society.

It's as if you owned a shop in a mall. You are the owner of that, yes, but you can't be upset if we send you your portion of the bill for the security guards, maintenance on the common grounds, repaving the parking, etc.  In fact, it is part of the agreement. You may have inherited the shop, so you didn't originally agree, but you tacitly agreed by staying. When we now send you the next bill, you owe that money, or you are a thief.  Or you can leave. Take your shop elsewhere, and stop using our services.

Living in our society is the same as having your inherited shop in that mall. You are agreeing to pay your share by staying there, and can leave if you don't like the fees/taxes, but if you decide to stay a part of it, you have to pay your share, legally and morally.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on February 25, 2017, 08:32:40 PM
I expressly don't want your services and you can go stuff it.  If you want to continue to provide services I expressly said I don't want, then that is on you, not me.
You bill collectors will not be tolerated, they are mobsters.  You guys are supposed to be libertarians, right?  This is like libertarianism 101.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: sol on February 25, 2017, 08:44:55 PM
I expressly don't want your services and you can go stuff it. 

If you don't want them, why do you keep using them?

People like you should be forcefully removed from America.  You're a freeloader.

And just to be clear, you are not being sent a bill, unless you profit from using our services.  If you are poor, you get to live tax free.  Only those people who strike it rich benefiting from the things that America provides are asked to pay for their good fortune. 
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on February 25, 2017, 08:50:21 PM
You guys have no understanding of libertarianism at all.  I actually am not a libertarian, but at least I understand what it is.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on February 25, 2017, 09:00:35 PM
And just to be clear, you are not being sent a bill, unless you profit from using our services.  If you are poor, you get to live tax free.  Only those people who strike it rich benefiting from the things that America provides are asked to pay for their good fortune.

That's a really good point.

You get all these services free!  You only pay if you're profiting off while using them, then we ask you to pay a fairly small percentage.  What a deal!

You guys have no understanding of libertarianism at all.

We get it, we're disagreeing with the * that the extreme fringe libertarians (typically Randians) put forth.

Libertarianism has a valid place in society. Frothing at the mouth "taxes are theft" stuff?  Not so much.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on February 25, 2017, 09:04:52 PM
We get it, we're disagreeing with the * that the extreme fringe libertarians (typically Randians) put forth.

Libertarianism has a valid place in society. Frothing at the mouth "taxes are theft" stuff?  Not so much.
But isn't that at the core of the philosophy?  Your version of libertarianism is actually some variant of collectivism.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Metric Mouse on February 25, 2017, 09:06:38 PM
To be fair, everybody profits off the system. Everybody, even poor people. They just get a smaller bill.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on February 25, 2017, 09:12:06 PM
How do you think a system with taxation is in anyway a libertarian system?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on February 25, 2017, 09:13:16 PM
But isn't that at the core of the philosophy?

The core is "less government interference."  It's not "zero taxes at all costs."

Reasonable libertarians agree that some taxes necessarily must exist; where we draw the line becomes the discussion.  Fringe ones want to draw that line at $0, and somehow think that a combination of free market and altruism will solve all the problems that would be created.

To be fair, everybody profits off the system. Everybody, even poor people. They just get a smaller bill.

Everybody benefits from the system, yes.  Profits?  Maybe, maybe not, depending on your definition. But yes, we all benefit from living in a society.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on February 25, 2017, 09:14:31 PM
How do you think a system with taxation is in anyway a libertarian system?

Why do you think libertarian necessarily means "zero taxes, ever, for any reason"?  Libertarianism is about freedom and liberty.

Less government is a part of that, and thus less taxes occur.  It's not zero government (aka anarchy) or zero taxes except to the delusional.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Libertarian_Party_(United_States) (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Libertarian_Party_(United_States))

Quote
Current fiscal policy positions include lowering taxes,[11]
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on February 25, 2017, 09:15:12 PM
Those "reasonable libertarians" are not libertarians at all, sorry.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on February 25, 2017, 09:17:40 PM
You are nullifying the core principle of liberty if you allow for any involuntary transfers of property, aka taxation.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on February 25, 2017, 09:20:42 PM
You are nullifying the core principle of liberty if you allow for any involuntary transfers of property, aka taxation.

You're forgetting that the transfer of property through taxation is entirely voluntary.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on February 25, 2017, 09:23:47 PM
You are nullifying the core principle of liberty if you allow for any involuntary transfers of property, aka taxation.

You're forgetting that the transfer of property through taxation is entirely voluntary.

Exactly. Not just property (goods), but services, too.

If you and I agree you will pay me $X for mowing your lawn, and I mow it, you should pay, or you are breaking our contract, and you should expect it to be enforced.  Whining next that the person collecting it is a mafia guy forcing you to pay is on you.

With society, you are agreeing to pay your bill for the goods and services provided, or you can leave and not take advantage of them.  But if you decide to stay and get the goods and services of society, yes, you have to pay your bill, or YOU are the one breaking the contract.

Again: feel free to leave if you don't want to pay the bill for the stuff you're using.

Why are you refusing to leave, but still taking?  =/
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on February 25, 2017, 09:26:36 PM
You are nullifying the core principle of liberty if you allow for any involuntary transfers of property, aka taxation.

You're forgetting that the transfer of property through taxation is entirely voluntary.
Are you serious?  It is NOT voluntary.  See what happens if you don't "volunteer".
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on February 25, 2017, 09:28:20 PM
You are nullifying the core principle of liberty if you allow for any involuntary transfers of property, aka taxation.

You're forgetting that the transfer of property through taxation is entirely voluntary.

Exactly. Not just property (goods), but services, too.

If you and I agree you will pay me $X for mowing your lawn, and I mow it, you should pay, or you are breaking our contract, and you should expect it to be enforced.  Whining next that the person collecting it is a mafia guy forcing you to pay is on you.

With society, you are agreeing to pay your bill for the goods and services provided, or you can leave and not take advantage of them.  But if you decide to stay and get the goods and services of society, yes, you have to pay your bill, or YOU are the one breaking the contract.

Again: feel free to leave if you don't want to pay the bill for the stuff you're using.

Why are you refusing to leave, but still taking?  =/
Your system described is not logically consistent with libertarianism.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on February 25, 2017, 09:31:53 PM
You are nullifying the core principle of liberty if you allow for any involuntary transfers of property, aka taxation.

You're forgetting that the transfer of property through taxation is entirely voluntary.

Exactly. Not just property (goods), but services, too.

If you and I agree you will pay me $X for mowing your lawn, and I mow it, you should pay, or you are breaking our contract, and you should expect it to be enforced.  Whining next that the person collecting it is a mafia guy forcing you to pay is on you.

With society, you are agreeing to pay your bill for the goods and services provided, or you can leave and not take advantage of them.  But if you decide to stay and get the goods and services of society, yes, you have to pay your bill, or YOU are the one breaking the contract.

Again: feel free to leave if you don't want to pay the bill for the stuff you're using.

Why are you refusing to leave, but still taking?  =/
Your system described is not logically consistent with libertarianism.

Liberty cannot exist in a society without certain basic services commonly provided by government.

Without some form of policing and legal system, there is nothing to prevent a stronger man from beating you up, taking everything you own, and enslaving you.

It's possible for these services to be paid for privately, but this leads a scenario where liberty exists for the wealthy only . . . and where the poor are unable to protect themselves and their property.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on February 25, 2017, 09:36:06 PM
Liberty cannot exist in a society without certain basic services commonly provided by government.
The anarchocapitalists would disagree with you.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on February 25, 2017, 09:55:59 PM
Liberty cannot exist in a society without certain basic services commonly provided by government.
The anarchocapitalists would disagree with you.

How many of them moved to Somalia when it became a government-less anarchocapitalist paradise?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Metric Mouse on February 25, 2017, 09:58:38 PM
Liberty cannot exist in a society without certain basic services commonly provided by government.
The anarchocapitalists would disagree with you.

How many of them moved to Somalia when it became a government-less anarchocapitalist paradise?
Reminds me of "communism works", its just that no one can ever show where it has worked...
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on February 25, 2017, 10:10:33 PM


You are nullifying the core principle of liberty if you allow for any involuntary transfers of property, aka taxation.

You're forgetting that the transfer of property through taxation is entirely voluntary.
Are you serious?  It is NOT voluntary.  See what happens if you don't "volunteer".

Well, I assume you'd leave, because you don't want to take part in that society voluntarily anymore.

So what happens when you try to leave?  I'm not aware of anyone forcing you to stay, but I'm not 100% sure which society you're in.

Is someone forcing you to stay?  If not, let us know how it goes when you stop volunteering to be in that society and leave! :)
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Classical_Liberal on February 26, 2017, 04:26:07 AM
Reminds me of "communism works", its just that no one can ever show where it has worked...

CCCP, Cuba, Venezuela? or not so much.

Is someone forcing you to stay?  If not, let us know how it goes when you stop volunteering to be in that society and leave! :)

lol...and now the rallying cry of the egalitarian, democratic-socialist millennials is the same as their ultra-conservative, racist, hippy-hating grandfathers.  'merica, love it or leave it. 

All things do indeed come full circle, usually in the most hilarious of ways. 
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on February 26, 2017, 05:58:15 AM
Our hermit friend buys a plot of land.  Sets down a tiny house.  Has solar panels, dugs a well, flys a helicopter to buy propane tanks.  Has no need of government services and expressly asks to be left alone.  How does the government have any right to ask him to leave?  It is his/her land.  The government has no claim for payment of services since they have no valid contract with the hermit.  Seriously you guys have no understanding of libertarianism.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: bacchi on February 26, 2017, 09:15:54 AM
Quote
Seriously you guys have no understanding of libertarianism.

Explain it better, then. I can't tell if the argument is that ALL taxation is theft and should be abolished or only SOME taxation is theft and should be abolished. Not much of what the hermit did could be done without a government and courts and a military.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: bacchi on February 26, 2017, 09:16:54 AM
lol...and now the rallying cry of the egalitarian, democratic-socialist millennials is the same as their ultra-conservative, racist, hippy-hating grandfathers.  'merica, love it or leave it. 

One sophomoric argument deserves another, after all.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on February 26, 2017, 09:22:29 AM
lol...and now the rallying cry of the egalitarian, democratic-socialist millennials is the same as their ultra-conservative, racist, hippy-hating grandfathers.  'merica, love it or leave it. 

All things do indeed come full circle, usually in the most hilarious of ways.

That's a straw man.  Nobody said that you have to love the country you pay taxes in or leave it.  I'll reiterate for the folks who seem to have missed the multiple other times that it has been said:

Pay for the services you consume through taxes.

If you don't like to pay those taxes:
- You're free to change the way that the country works.  To do this in a democracy all that you need is to convince enough other people that you're viewpoint is correct and a change will happen.
- You're free to change your income level so that it's not being taxed at all.
- You're free to leave the country.

You have many options available to you.  The only one that's drawing condemnation is the fixation on stealing services from your countrymen.




Our hermit friend buys a plot of land.  Sets down a tiny house.  Has solar panels, dugs a well, flys a helicopter to buy propane tanks.  Has no need of government services and expressly asks to be left alone.  How does the government have any right to ask him to leave?  It is his/her land.  The government has no claim for payment of services since they have no valid contract with the hermit.  Seriously you guys have no understanding of libertarianism.

I get together fifty of my friends, raid your hermit's home in the middle of the night and kill him.  Yay liberty?

But even before I kill the hermit:
- You've indicated that your hermit friend bought a plot of land.  Where is the record of who owns that plot of land kept?  What happens if your neighbour builds a fence on your property?
- Who prevents a large pulp and paper mill from dumping toxic chemicals upstream of your hermit friend's plot of land?
- How did your friend get to the plot of land . . . did he use public roads?  Did he fly a helicopter through airspace kept safe by regulations and rules regarding flying vehicles?  Did he cross land owned by the country or other people?
- When your friend bought the solar panels, did he pay for them with government issued currency?  How are the propane tanks he uses refilled?

The idea of a person living in a society, completely isolated from society is kinda silly and really undermines the credibility of your argument.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on February 26, 2017, 09:34:47 AM
Quote
Seriously you guys have no understanding of libertarianism.

Explain it better, then. I can't tell if the argument is that ALL taxation is theft and should be abolished or only SOME taxation is theft and should be abolished. Not much of what the hermit did could be done without a government and courts and a military.
How is taxation not theft?  This is super basic.  Involuntary property transfers are not an example of libertarianism.  Why is this not obvious?
The hermit is also a pacifist and doesn't believe in self defense or courts or a military and believes they are harmful to society and he is now commanded to pay for these "services" which are not wanted. 

Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Metric Mouse on February 26, 2017, 09:45:02 AM
Our hermit friend buys a plot of land.  Sets down a tiny house.  Has solar panels, dugs a well, flys a helicopter to buy propane tanks.  Has no need of government services and expressly asks to be left alone.  How does the government have any right to ask him to leave?  It is his/her land.  The government has no claim for payment of services since they have no valid contract with the hermit.  Seriously you guys have no understanding of libertarianism.
We understand, we simply disagree with the point of view on taxes.

How did the hermit buy a helicopter? Is the fuel or any of the parts transported along public roads? Then he should pay for them. Does he file a flight plan so no other helicopters fly into him? Does he land in any land not his when going to buy supplies? Was that propane pumped by a comapny using infrastructure that was regulated or financed by any level of government?

A hermit could avoid this, he just has to give up the benefits.  No trips to town. No supplies from anyone. No products shipped, built or sourced from anywhere outside of his woodland cave.  Otherwise he would be directly benefiting from government action. Of course, his income woulf be so small he likely wouldn't owe taxes anyway; so i would not be sure why he would be so worried.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on February 26, 2017, 09:46:27 AM
Quote
Seriously you guys have no understanding of libertarianism.

Explain it better, then. I can't tell if the argument is that ALL taxation is theft and should be abolished or only SOME taxation is theft and should be abolished. Not much of what the hermit did could be done without a government and courts and a military.
How is taxation not theft?  This is super basic.  Involuntary property transfers are not an example of libertarianism.  Why is this not obvious?
The hermit is also a pacifist and doesn't believe in self defense or courts or a military and believes they are harmful to society and he is now commanded to pay for these "services" which are not wanted.

How is the pacifist hermit going to keep me personally from taking his land and enslaving him?  Is that really the freedom libertarians yearn for?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on February 26, 2017, 09:47:46 AM
Our hermit friend buys a plot of land.  Sets down a tiny house.  Has solar panels, dugs a well, flys a helicopter to buy propane tanks.  Has no need of government services and expressly asks to be left alone.  How does the government have any right to ask him to leave?  It is his/her land.  The government has no claim for payment of services since they have no valid contract with the hermit.  Seriously you guys have no understanding of libertarianism.

I get together fifty of my friends, raid your hermit's home in the middle of the night and kill him.  Yay liberty?

How is that liberty?  Not getting your point.

But even before I kill the hermit:
- You've indicated that your hermit friend bought a plot of land.  Where is the record of who owns that plot of land kept?  What happens if your neighbour builds a fence on your property?
- Who prevents a large pulp and paper mill from dumping toxic chemicals upstream of your hermit friend's plot of land?
- How did your friend get to the plot of land . . . did he use public roads?  Did he fly a helicopter through airspace kept safe by regulations and rules regarding flying vehicles?  Did he cross land owned by the country or other people?
- When your friend bought the solar panels, did he pay for them with government issued currency?  How are the propane tanks he uses refilled?

The idea of a person living in a society, completely isolated from society is kinda silly and really undermines the credibility of your argument.
Who cares how isolated one is from society?  My point is that under libertarianism people can't be compelled to pay for services that didn't order. 
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: sol on February 26, 2017, 09:49:57 AM
The idea of a person living in a society, completely isolated from society is kinda silly and really undermines the credibility of your argument.

That's because it was a silly argument to begin with.  No serious libertarian espouses the views that jim does.

But I understand why the idea seems so seductive.  People who haven't thought very carefully about it just LOVE the idea of getting all of those societal benefits for free, without paying for any of it.  Who doesn't love getting stuff for free?

Usually, I think libertarianism is most attractive to people (usually white male people) who have been convinced that the government has disadvantaged them.  They hate the idea that they pay for unemployment insurance, even though they're not employed.  They hate the fact that some people get section 8 housing subsidies, even though they love their mortgage interest deduction.  They think affirmative action and environmental regulations, which were designed to correct past mistakes, are instead an attempt to create more mistakes. 

If you tell a person for his whole life that government is helping someone else and not him, OF COURSE he will come to hate the government and turn to something stupid like libertarianism.  I think the way to combat this is to spend some time highlighting all of the things that government has provided for him, as GuitarStv has done. 

Though to that list, I should add that I sure hope that hypothetical hermit never went to public schools, or got vaccinations, or used fossil fuels or technology of any sort, or received medical care at a non-profit hospital.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on February 26, 2017, 09:51:38 AM
Quote
Seriously you guys have no understanding of libertarianism.

Explain it better, then. I can't tell if the argument is that ALL taxation is theft and should be abolished or only SOME taxation is theft and should be abolished. Not much of what the hermit did could be done without a government and courts and a military.
How is taxation not theft?  This is super basic.  Involuntary property transfers are not an example of libertarianism.  Why is this not obvious?
The hermit is also a pacifist and doesn't believe in self defense or courts or a military and believes they are harmful to society and he is now commanded to pay for these "services" which are not wanted.

How is the pacifist hermit going to keep me personally from taking his land and enslaving him?  Is that really the freedom libertarians yearn for?
He is a pacifist so he is cool with it.  Equal negative liberty is the liberty described in libertarianism, not everyone does whatever they want kind of liberty.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on February 26, 2017, 09:59:50 AM
Our hermit friend buys a plot of land.  Sets down a tiny house.  Has solar panels, dugs a well, flys a helicopter to buy propane tanks.  Has no need of government services and expressly asks to be left alone.  How does the government have any right to ask him to leave?  It is his/her land.  The government has no claim for payment of services since they have no valid contract with the hermit.  Seriously you guys have no understanding of libertarianism.
We understand, we simply disagree with the point of view on taxes.

How did the hermit buy a helicopter? Is the fuel or any of the parts transported along public roads? Then he should pay for them. Does he file a flight plan so no other helicopters fly into him? Does he land in any land not his when going to buy supplies? Was that propane pumped by a comapny using infrastructure that was regulated or financed by any level of government?

A hermit could avoid this, he just has to give up the benefits.  No trips to town. No supplies from anyone. No products shipped, built or sourced from anywhere outside of his woodland cave.  Otherwise he would be directly benefiting from government action. Of course, his income woulf be so small he likely wouldn't owe taxes anyway; so i would not be sure why he would be so worried.
Public roads don't exist in a libertarian society.  Some are toll roads others are jointly owned by housing associations.  Remember in pure libertarianism there is no violations of the NAP (except for private parties), and therefore no government.  This whole argument that someone has benefited by government action X and therefore owes the government money is absurd.  The government needs to show the contract if it wants people to pay it for whatever.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on February 26, 2017, 10:09:16 AM
I am kinda of confused, this thread is supposed to be for libertarians?  So where are they?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on February 26, 2017, 10:32:39 AM
Quote
Seriously you guys have no understanding of libertarianism.

Explain it better, then. I can't tell if the argument is that ALL taxation is theft and should be abolished or only SOME taxation is theft and should be abolished. Not much of what the hermit did could be done without a government and courts and a military.
How is taxation not theft?  This is super basic.  Involuntary property transfers are not an example of libertarianism.  Why is this not obvious?
The hermit is also a pacifist and doesn't believe in self defense or courts or a military and believes they are harmful to society and he is now commanded to pay for these "services" which are not wanted.

How is the pacifist hermit going to keep me personally from taking his land and enslaving him?  Is that really the freedom libertarians yearn for?
He is a pacifist so he is cool with it.  Equal negative liberty is the liberty described in libertarianism, not everyone does whatever they want kind of liberty.

You lose negative liberty when someone enslaves you.

You've just said that your hypothetical hermit is OK with having his freedom completely limited by slavery, but doesn't like taxes . . . because they limit his freedom.  That's not very logically consistent.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on February 26, 2017, 10:38:30 AM
You lose negative liberty when someone enslaves you.

You've just said that your hypothetical hermit is OK with having his freedom completely limited by slavery, but doesn't like taxes . . . because they limit his freedom.  That's not very logically consistent.
The pacifist is an example only, maybe he is not logical. 
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: sol on February 26, 2017, 10:42:34 AM
I am kinda of confused, this thread is supposed to be for libertarians?  So where are they?

Most of them died out during the civil rights movement.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on February 26, 2017, 10:55:13 AM
I am kinda of confused, this thread is supposed to be for libertarians?  So where are they?

Most of them died out during the civil rights movement.
Freedom of association in libertarianism demands the civil rights act be repealed.  I can't believe Gary Johnson wanted to force people to bake cakes.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: bacchi on February 26, 2017, 12:08:00 PM
I am kinda of confused, this thread is supposed to be for libertarians?  So where are they?

No one wants to live in your ideal of libertarianism because it'll be a complete shit hole. They've accepted the social contract and don't believe that taxation is theft. (Why is this not obvious? It's super basic.)

GuitarStv listed the solutions. Rather than tilting at windmills, do one of the following:

Quote from: GuitarStv
If you don't like to pay those taxes:
- You're free to change the way that the country works.  To do this in a democracy all that you need is to convince enough other people that you're viewpoint is correct and a change will happen.
- You're free to change your income level so that it's not being taxed at all.
- You're free to leave the country.

I'd recommend a move to Galt's Gulch Chile but we know how that turned out.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on February 26, 2017, 01:21:48 PM


You lose negative liberty when someone enslaves you.

You've just said that your hypothetical hermit is OK with having his freedom completely limited by slavery, but doesn't like taxes . . . because they limit his freedom.  That's not very logically consistent.
The pacifist is an example only, maybe he is not logical.

I am kinda of confused, this thread is supposed to be for libertarians?  So where are they?


They are logical, unlike your hermit, and they don't want to be enslaved, like your hermit.

They understand some taxes are necessary, to recognize private property, protect contracts, provide defense, etc.

They work to minimize taxes, and thus don't want to defend your crazy version of libertarianism.


Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on February 26, 2017, 01:51:43 PM
I am kinda of confused, this thread is supposed to be for libertarians?  So where are they?

No one wants to live in your ideal of libertarianism because it'll be a complete shit hole. They've accepted the social contract and don't believe that taxation is theft. (Why is this not obvious? It's super basic.)

GuitarStv listed the solutions. Rather than tilting at windmills, do one of the following:

Quote from: GuitarStv
If you don't like to pay those taxes:
- You're free to change the way that the country works.  To do this in a democracy all that you need is to convince enough other people that you're viewpoint is correct and a change will happen.
- You're free to change your income level so that it's not being taxed at all.
- You're free to leave the country.

I'd recommend a move to Galt's Gulch Chile but we know how that turned out.
I don't get this notion of if you don't like it then leave the country.  First off, there are no countries.  I keep hearing about a "social contract", where is this contract that I never signed?  Democracy and libertarianism are two different political notions that don't mix.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on February 26, 2017, 02:28:19 PM
The contract is us giving you all these awesome services you listed, and you agree to pay for them after. If you don't want the services, and/or don't want to pay, you decline the contract by leaving the society that requires it.

Or you work to change it, changing the societies laws, and thus the contract.

If you want no countries, and no laws, that's anarchy, not libertarianism.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on February 26, 2017, 02:39:23 PM
The contract is us giving you all these awesome services you listed, and you agree to pay for them after. If you don't want the services, and/or don't want to pay, you decline the contract by leaving the society that requires it.

Or you work to change it, changing the societies laws, and thus the contract.

If you want no countries, and no laws, that's anarchy, not libertarianism.
Totally collectivist idea "social contract". 
Anarchocapitalism is the only logically consistent form of "government" under the philosophy.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: lost_in_the_endless_aisle on February 26, 2017, 03:02:36 PM
The contract is us giving you all these awesome services you listed, and you agree to pay for them after. If you don't want the services, and/or don't want to pay, you decline the contract by leaving the society that requires it.

Or you work to change it, changing the societies laws, and thus the contract.

If you want no countries, and no laws, that's anarchy, not libertarianism.
Totally collectivist idea "social contract". 
Anarchocapitalism is the only logically consistent form of "government" under the philosophy.
Logical consistency doesn't assure you are starting with justifiable assumptions. One problem with hard-line libertarian ideologies like AnCap is the false assumption that people can be meaningfully thought of as completely sovereign entities with no moral obligations to each other beyond refraining from violation of another person's (negative) liberty.

I suspect people driven towards AnCap (as I once was a long time ago) dislike the grey territory of pragmatic libertarianism that seeks to maximize personal freedom and economic efficiency while respecting the role played by governments to solve difficult coordination problems like providing mutual defense, funding certain major infrastructure projects, and providing for some degree of social welfare. So instead these idealists rush towards the extreme pole of libertarianism and thus become ideologues--and having unmixed the grey into black and white, celebrate the simple appeal of taxation is theft! The role of all ideologies is to allow thoughtlessness to masquerade as virtue.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on February 26, 2017, 03:09:52 PM
The role of all ideologies is to allow thoughtlessness to masquerade as virtue.

Wow, insightful.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Metric Mouse on February 26, 2017, 04:53:12 PM
I am kinda of confused, this thread is supposed to be for libertarians?  So where are they?

Most of them died out during the civil rights movement.
Freedom of association in libertarianism demands the civil rights act be repealed.  I can't believe Gary Johnson wanted to force people to bake cakes.
Are you looking at this backwards? Doesn't that mean one has the right to associate with whomever they want, not the right to stop people from associating?  If one wishes to not associate, they are free to stop if they wish; they shouldn't have the right to stop other people with associating at their work place or their neighborhood or whatever, because this would be restricting freedom, not enhancing it.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on February 26, 2017, 05:41:19 PM
I am kinda of confused, this thread is supposed to be for libertarians?  So where are they?

Most of them died out during the civil rights movement.
Freedom of association in libertarianism demands the civil rights act be repealed.  I can't believe Gary Johnson wanted to force people to bake cakes.
Are you looking at this backwards? Doesn't that mean one has the right to associate with whomever they want, not the right to stop people from associating?  If one wishes to not associate, they are free to stop if they wish; they shouldn't have the right to stop other people with associating at their work place or their neighborhood or whatever, because this would be restricting freedom, not enhancing it.
Can't quite figure out what you are saying.  People should have the right to refuse to associate with others, even if it is based on race, sexual orientation, religion or any other reason.  Gary Johnson would force a person to bake a wedding cake for a gay couple even if the baker objected to the wedding due to religious grounds.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Libertea on February 26, 2017, 07:53:33 PM
I am kinda of confused, this thread is supposed to be for libertarians?  So where are they?
I can't speak for anyone else, but I'm the OP, and I'd appreciate it if you'd please stop hijacking my thread to put forth an extreme anarchist viewpoint that you readily admit you don't even subscribe to yourself. 
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on February 27, 2017, 04:44:27 AM
So I guess your not a fan of Murray Rothbard?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Cwadda on February 27, 2017, 07:05:19 AM
I am kinda of confused, this thread is supposed to be for libertarians?  So where are they?

Maybe they left because of your extreme misrepresentation and constant antagonization?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on February 27, 2017, 07:26:57 AM
I am kinda of confused, this thread is supposed to be for libertarians?  So where are they?

Maybe they left because of your extreme misrepresentation and constant antagonization?
I don't think I have misrepresented at all.  There is a strong underlying anarchist strain in libertarianism.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: arebelspy on February 27, 2017, 11:33:36 AM
I am kinda of confused, this thread is supposed to be for libertarians?  So where are they?

Maybe they left because of your extreme misrepresentation and constant antagonization?
I don't think I have misrepresented at all.  There is a strong underlying anarchist strain in libertarianism.
There is a strong underlying theme. But they're not the same thing, which is basically what your position is.

Tell me: what do you see as the difference between anarchy and your version of libertarianism?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on February 27, 2017, 12:49:11 PM
I am kinda of confused, this thread is supposed to be for libertarians?  So where are they?

Maybe they left because of your extreme misrepresentation and constant antagonization?
I don't think I have misrepresented at all.  There is a strong underlying anarchist strain in libertarianism.
There is a strong underlying theme. But they're not the same thing, which is basically what your position is.

Tell me: what do you see as the difference between anarchy and your version of libertarianism?
Depends on how one defines the word anarchy.  Historical anarchists where not libertarian but collectivist, they hated property, since they viewed the state as controlled by the upper classes who used the state and its rules to cement themselves into the top tier against the worker class.

Individualist anarchists like Spooner and Tucker held to private property and common law.  Deduction of the libertarian principle of the non-aggression led various libertarians to what is now called anarcho-capitalism.  All state functions being privatized. 

The liberty train has many stops: less government in general, constitutionalism, minarchism, anarcho-capitalism.  Some want off at various points. 

I don't see how one doesn't arrive at the last stop if you want to remain philosophically pure.

Everything hinges on one principle.  Even if it results in many people being left to die due to lack of medical care, or lack of food and shelter.  Under this thinking these end results can't be considered because the principle must be upheld.  Personally I don't see this system as workable in real life.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: sol on February 27, 2017, 01:27:29 PM
Personally I don't see this system as workable in real life.

So did you come to this thread looking for extremist libertarians because you wanted to argue against their ridiculous views?  Because instead you have ended up vocally supporting those same ridiculous views, while a variety of people, both libertarians and non-libertarians, have told you you're being ridiculous.

I'm still not sure where you stand.  If you're playing devils advocate here, I'm not sure you've done a very good job.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: lemonlyman on February 27, 2017, 03:13:43 PM
This thread has turned into pseudo political science. Philosophy and ideology evolve like language.

"But what does Libertarian MEAN?" Whatever the masses of Libertarians think it means.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on February 27, 2017, 06:25:18 PM
Guys, I realized that I was being trolled when he mentioned that the example he was using was logically inconsistent.  He has also mentioned that he doesn't believe that the system he's arguing for is possible to implement in reality.

That's kinda a brick wall to productive discussion.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Metric Mouse on February 27, 2017, 07:21:34 PM
This thread has turned into pseudo political science. Philosophy and ideology evolve like language.

"But what does Libertarian MEAN?" Whatever the masses of Libertarians think it means.
I just assume whatever Gary Johnson says is cannon.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Spork on February 28, 2017, 10:45:16 AM

I just assume whatever Gary Johnson says is cannon.

Meh... you could do worse.  (See current administration for example.)
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Telecaster on March 01, 2017, 08:25:35 AM

lol...and now the rallying cry of the egalitarian, democratic-socialist millennials is the same as their ultra-conservative, racist, hippy-hating grandfathers.  'merica, love it or leave it. 

All things do indeed come full circle, usually in the most hilarious of ways.

No, there is are distinct and fundamental differences in the two arguments. 

The hippy-hating grandfathers were saying if you do not agree with the policies of this country, you should leave rather than speak out against those policies.   

In the current argument, the issue is that everyone  take advantages of society by simply living here.  It is unavoidable.  You get all the benefits of roads, courts, police, food safety, environmental quality, etc.  And because you are getting the benefits, you should pay .   It doesn't matter if you want the benefits or not, you still get them.    But you are not being forced to pay for anything against your will, because you can simply leave. 
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Classical_Liberal on March 01, 2017, 09:39:32 AM

lol...and now the rallying cry of the egalitarian, democratic-socialist millennials is the same as their ultra-conservative, racist, hippy-hating grandfathers.  'merica, love it or leave it. 

All things do indeed come full circle, usually in the most hilarious of ways.

No, there is are distinct and fundamental differences in the two arguments. 

The hippy-hating grandfathers were saying if you do not agree with the policies of this country, you should leave rather than speak out against those policies.   

In the current argument, the issue is that everyone  take advantages of society by simply living here.  It is unavoidable.  You get all the benefits of roads, courts, police, food safety, environmental quality, etc.  And because you are getting the benefits, you should pay .   It doesn't matter if you want the benefits or not, you still get them.    But you are not being forced to pay for anything against your will, because you can simply leave.

Indeed! Such a ridiculous, non-provable and generic concept absolutely MUST be argued!

I disagree with your assumptions.

The hippy hating grandfathers also had a saying “get a job”.  Which is representative of their belief that ‘merica love it or leave it meant; start contributing to the benefit of the country and society before you criticize the status quo.  Them’s the rules, if you don’t like‘em leave.

Whereas, the similar millennial cry to those who disagree with equalitarianism/social programs is closer to the idea…The majority want these services available, if you don’t agree go to university for a proper indoctrination & then you will understand.  In the meantime, we are smarter than you, so take what we are offering and pay your share.  If you don’t like it leave.
 
In all fairness, ARS clearly stated later in the thread (after my comment)
Or you work to change it, changing the societies laws, and thus the contract.
as another option.  So, now we are dealing with
That's a straw man.
Which is was not at the time given the quote before my statement. 


Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: SpeedReader on March 15, 2017, 09:36:40 PM
I came to this thread hoping to learn more about libertarianism, because what little I've seen before made the proponents look like heartless whack-jobs.  That includes reading Ayn Rand.  Even with the input of serious reasonable posters (as opposed to trolling), at this point it sounds like the "libertarian paradise" would merely replace some government functions with a great many private lawsuits to settle who infringed on whom. 

This does not sound like a happy society to me.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Metric Mouse on March 16, 2017, 04:27:41 AM
I came to this thread hoping to learn more about libertarianism, because what little I've seen before made the proponents look like heartless whack-jobs.  That includes reading Ayn Rand. 
I actually really enjoyed The Fountainhead. It wasn't the best written novel ever, but enjoyable. Not sure why all the hate?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: hoping2retire35 on March 16, 2017, 07:30:52 AM
I came to this thread hoping to learn more about libertarianism, because what little I've seen before made the proponents look like heartless whack-jobs.  That includes reading Ayn Rand.  Even with the input of serious reasonable posters (as opposed to trolling), at this point it sounds like the "libertarian paradise" would merely replace some government functions with a great many private lawsuits to settle who infringed on whom. 

This does not sound like a happy society to me.

People can't just live as little individual islands. There has to be some other social structure to replace laws/ consequences etc. but hopefully it would be more fluid and not simply mandated like government is.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Cwadda on March 16, 2017, 08:06:34 AM
I came to this thread hoping to learn more about libertarianism, because what little I've seen before made the proponents look like heartless whack-jobs.  That includes reading Ayn Rand.  Even with the input of serious reasonable posters (as opposed to trolling), at this point it sounds like the "libertarian paradise" would merely replace some government functions with a great many private lawsuits to settle who infringed on whom. 

This does not sound like a happy society to me.

FWIW, I identify most with libertarianism and I'll be the first one to tell you that I don't agree with all of its facets. People portray Libertarians to the extreme. Nope, I don't agree with 100% privatized education and healthcare. That would be awful. That's like saying all democrats are pure socialists and all republicans are pure capitalists. No thank you, no need to label me.

I'm libertarian in a sense that I don't think the government should be limited to two political parties that are logically inconsistent.

Republicans: We won't tell you what to do with your money but we sure as hell CAN tell a woman what to do with her body!
Democrats: We won't tell you who you can and can't marry but btw we're going to tell you how your money should be spent and that you can't own semi-automatic rifles!
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Spork on March 16, 2017, 08:50:39 AM
I came to this thread hoping to learn more about libertarianism, because what little I've seen before made the proponents look like heartless whack-jobs.  That includes reading Ayn Rand.  Even with the input of serious reasonable posters (as opposed to trolling), at this point it sounds like the "libertarian paradise" would merely replace some government functions with a great many private lawsuits to settle who infringed on whom. 

This does not sound like a happy society to me.

I like the whole "I don't like trolls" inside a troll.  Five stars!
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on March 16, 2017, 09:11:29 AM
Republicans: We won't tell you what to do with your money but we sure as hell CAN tell a woman what to do with her body!
I don't think pro-life is a position that derives from libertarianism, it can go either way depending on how one defines beginning of life.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Metric Mouse on March 16, 2017, 09:18:15 AM
I came to this thread hoping to learn more about libertarianism, because what little I've seen before made the proponents look like heartless whack-jobs.  That includes reading Ayn Rand.  Even with the input of serious reasonable posters (as opposed to trolling), at this point it sounds like the "libertarian paradise" would merely replace some government functions with a great many private lawsuits to settle who infringed on whom. 

This does not sound like a happy society to me.

I like the whole "I don't like trolls" inside a troll.  Five stars!
Crap. Good catch. I fell for it, too.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Cwadda on March 16, 2017, 09:35:34 AM
Republicans: We won't tell you what to do with your money but we sure as hell CAN tell a woman what to do with her body!
I don't think pro-life is a position that derives from libertarianism, it can go either way depending on how one defines beginning of life.

It's just an example, my friend...
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on March 16, 2017, 06:19:03 PM
I came to this thread hoping to learn more about libertarianism, because what little I've seen before made the proponents look like heartless whack-jobs.  That includes reading Ayn Rand. 
I actually really enjoyed The Fountainhead. It wasn't the best written novel ever, but enjoyable. Not sure why all the hate?

Agreed.  I found Atlas Shrugged to be full of cool ideas when I first read it.  Certainly more enjoyable that slogging through George RR Martin's stuff.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: SpeedReader on March 16, 2017, 08:01:37 PM
I was not trolling.  I read every post in the thread to see what I could glean, as I genuinely wanted to learn more.  (My God, who would gut it out through that horrendous polemic at the end of Atlas Shrugged otherwise??)  But I'm not allowed to express an opinion on what I've heard so far?

If my take on it was wrong, why not educate me?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: GuitarStv on March 17, 2017, 05:58:51 AM
I was not trolling.  I read every post in the thread to see what I could glean, as I genuinely wanted to learn more.  (My God, who would gut it out through that horrendous polemic at the end of Atlas Shrugged otherwise??)  But I'm not allowed to express an opinion on what I've heard so far?

If my take on it was wrong, why not educate me?

Ayn Rand was identifying a problem . . . specifically that well meaning rules and regulations can lead to overreach and end up causing oppression that ends up hurting society.  She raised valid issues . . . but her approach (and Libertarianism in general) is an overreaction that has been proven impossible to work in reality.  That's the reason that Rand herself decided it would be wise to take advantage of government programs when she was broke and sick at the end of her life.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: jim555 on March 17, 2017, 06:45:48 AM
Next time a "taxation is theft" person chides me for wanting to collect SS and other benefits I will remind them of what Ayn Rand did and see how they react.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Spork on March 17, 2017, 08:58:07 AM
I was not trolling.  I read every post in the thread to see what I could glean, as I genuinely wanted to learn more.  (My God, who would gut it out through that horrendous polemic at the end of Atlas Shrugged otherwise??)  But I'm not allowed to express an opinion on what I've heard so far?

If my take on it was wrong, why not educate me?

Ayn Rand was identifying a problem . . . specifically that well meaning rules and regulations can lead to overreach and end up causing oppression that ends up hurting society.  She raised valid issues . . . but her approach (and Libertarianism in general) is an overreaction that has been proven impossible to work in reality.  That's the reason that Rand herself decided it would be wise to take advantage of government programs when she was broke and sick at the end of her life.

Actually: she was trying to identify a systemic philosophy that entirely derived from the premise "A is A" (from Aristotle).  You may disagree with her premise.  You may disagree with her logic or find faults in it, but that was her goal.  A vast majority of people see only a few of her conclusions (and either vehemently agree or disagree) without ever looking at her arguments.  For instance, you will see a large number of religious right embracing her, while not noticing or ignoring that her conclusions were built on a metaphysics that embraced the impossibility of a supreme being.

And as to taking Social Security/Medicare: she articulated earlier in life that if you're forced to pay into these programs, she had no problems then using them.  That said, she DID have problems using them and wouldn't.  It took someone that had her power of attorney to sign up for them because she would not, even when broke and sick. 
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: bacchi on March 17, 2017, 09:51:06 AM
Next time a "taxation is theft" person chides me for wanting to collect SS and other benefits I will remind them of what Ayn Rand did and see how they react.

"Like Ayn Rand, I am taking advantage of programs that I paid into. I didn't want to receive SS checks but, alas, my spouse/child/brother signed me up for them and I was forced to cash the check."
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Metric Mouse on March 20, 2017, 06:44:36 AM
I came to this thread hoping to learn more about libertarianism, because what little I've seen before made the proponents look like heartless whack-jobs.  That includes reading Ayn Rand. 
I actually really enjoyed The Fountainhead. It wasn't the best written novel ever, but enjoyable. Not sure why all the hate?

Agreed.  I found Atlas Shrugged to be full of cool ideas when I first read it.
Never read that one.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: bullcitybro on March 20, 2017, 06:47:16 AM
I've been on a huge Rothbard kick lately.  Just found out that the Mises institute has hundreds of free eBooks and audio-books to download if you're up for a little Austrian econ to start your day.

https://mises.org/library/books
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Metric Mouse on March 20, 2017, 06:53:05 AM
Actually: she was trying to identify a systemic philosophy that entirely derived from the premise "A is A" (from Aristotle).  You may disagree with her premise.  You may disagree with her logic or find faults in it, but that was her goal.  A vast majority of people see only a few of her conclusions (and either vehemently agree or disagree) without ever looking at her arguments.  For instance, you will see a large number of religious right embracing her, while not noticing or ignoring that her conclusions were built on a metaphysics that embraced the impossibility of a supreme being.

And as to taking Social Security/Medicare: she articulated earlier in life that if you're forced to pay into these programs, she had no problems then using them.  That said, she DID have problems using them and wouldn't.  It took someone that had her power of attorney to sign up for them because she would not, even when broke and sick.
Interesting. It's certainly difficult for some people to live an individualistic, self-reliant lifestyle when society pushes us so strongly to conform.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: cheapass on March 20, 2017, 10:28:21 AM
Next time a "taxation is theft" person chides me for wanting to collect SS and other benefits I will remind them of what Ayn Rand did and see how they react.

"Like Ayn Rand, I am taking advantage of programs that I paid into. I didn't want to receive SS checks but, alas, my spouse/child/brother signed me up for them and I was forced to cash the check."

If social security is still around when I'm eligible I'll certainly be applying and getting as much out of it as I can, after all it's my money I paid into and earned a crappy ROI on. I don't see anything logically inconsistent about opposing these programs while trying to recover some of your own money that you've dumped in the hole.

Given the choice, I'd rather opt out and have autonomy over my own capital though vs. having it removed from me at gunpoint and returned to me decades later.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: sol on March 20, 2017, 10:32:59 AM
Given the choice, I'd rather opt out and have autonomy over my own capital though vs. having it removed from me at gunpoint and returned to me decades later.

America gives you that choice!  You are free to stop using all of the benefits the US government provides (roads, power, education, etc.) by moving somewhere else. 

Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: cheapass on March 20, 2017, 10:37:13 AM
Given the choice, I'd rather opt out and have autonomy over my own capital though vs. having it removed from me at gunpoint and returned to me decades later.

America gives you that choice!  You are free to stop using all of the benefits the US government provides (roads, power, education, etc.) by moving somewhere else.

Ah, great set of options. Accept mob rule or GTFO.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: sol on March 20, 2017, 10:41:47 AM
Ah, great set of options. Accept mob rule or GTFO.

I'm not telling anyone to get out.  I'm offering you the choice to exercise your free will.  Please do what you think is best!

If you want to be part of American society, then welcome!  Come party with us!  If you don't, then no hard feelings man, good luck in your new life wherever you may go!

But please don't come to my country and exploit all of our great stuff and then refuse to pay for it.  That's just stealing. 
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Telecaster on March 20, 2017, 11:30:10 AM
Agreed.  I found Atlas Shrugged to be full of cool ideas when I first read it.  Certainly more enjoyable that slogging through George RR Martin's stuff.

I read it a long time ago, but I found it awfully dry.  I don't remember a lot of it, but there is one part of the book near the end where they are going around the room and all the great minds explain why they left society and gathered at Galt's Gulch. The composer, the engineer, etc.  Finally we get to the doctor, who has found a cure for strokes.  The doctor explains society has all these rules for doctors including how much he can get paid, and he doesn't like any of those rules.  So society can suck it, they don't get the cure, only the Galt's Gulch folks can share in this miraculous discovery.  Okay fair enough.

But contrast to a real doctor, Jonas Salk, who discovered a vaccination for a real disease, polio.  Polio was one of the most feared diseases in the world, which killed annually tens of thousands of people in the US, mostly children, and left hundreds of thousands more permanently crippled.  Salk refused to make dime on his discovery, instead hoping that his vaccine could be distributed as far and wide and as fast as possible.  And in fact that's what happened.  Salk and his colleagues positively affected literally millions of lives.

So, the question for me kind of comes down to who would I rather live next to?  The bitter doctor who hordes his discovery to himself because he's offended by society?  Or the guy who rolls up his sleeves and makes society better?   

No question in my book.  And fortunately, the bitter doctor is fictional and there really was a Jonas Salk. 






 
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: bullcitybro on March 20, 2017, 11:43:01 AM
Given the choice, I'd rather opt out and have autonomy over my own capital though vs. having it removed from me at gunpoint and returned to me decades later.

America gives you that choice!  You are free to stop using all of the benefits the US government provides (roads, power, education, etc.) by moving somewhere else.

No.  America USED to give you that choice, by virtue of decentralization and allowing states to determine their own priorities.  The founding principles of this country called for a loose confederation of states so people could do exactly that - choose where they wanted to live based on their conception of freedom and autonomy. 

The invasion of the Confederacy put an end to the fiction that the government existed at the behest of the people.  Now, there is no state sovereignty, no state nullification of federal law, and no meaningful differences in the way states moderate federal authority.  People on both sides of the political aisle should be concerned about that.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Telecaster on March 20, 2017, 12:16:46 PM

No.  America USED to give you that choice, by virtue of decentralization and allowing states to determine their own priorities.  The founding principles of this country called for a loose confederation of states so people could do exactly that - choose where they wanted to live based on their conception of freedom and autonomy. 

The invasion of the Confederacy put an end to the fiction that the government existed at the behest of the people.  Now, there is no state sovereignty, no state nullification of federal law, and no meaningful differences in the way states moderate federal authority.  People on both sides of the political aisle should be concerned about that.

That's simply bad alternative history.   The Constitution clearly states that Federal law trumps state law.   States have never been able to nullify federal laws.  States are not compelled to enforce federal laws in most cases, but they can't block them in any case. 
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: bullcitybro on March 20, 2017, 12:22:47 PM
What a shock that the United States Supreme Court has failed to uphold the principles of the Kentucky and Virginia Resolutions.  The supremacy clause is only valid if the originating federal laws are, themselves, constitutional.  The only recourse in our Republic to a federal government passing unconstitutional laws IS nullification.  The Supreme Court is a rubber stamp authority, as we saw during FDR's reign, where constitutionality seldom enters into it.

Yes, if you look at historic interpretation of the constitution, states don't have the "right" to nullify federal law... because we invaded them the one time that it's been put to the test.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: cheapass on March 20, 2017, 12:38:21 PM
But please don't come to my country and exploit all of our great stuff and then refuse to pay for it.  That's just stealing.

The only "great stuff" I've mentioned is Social Security which I'd prefer to neither 1) exploit or 2) pay for.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: sol on March 20, 2017, 12:45:05 PM
The invasion of the Confederacy put an end to the fiction that the government existed at the behest of the people... states don't have the "right" to nullify federal law... because we invaded them the one time that it's been put to the test.

You're about two steps away from "The South Shall Rise Again!" while you burn a wooden cross on my front lawn.

The America I live in asks that you follow certain rules.  You are not obliged to follow them, unless you want to live among us.  Life here is pretty sweet though, so I'd suggest you play along. 
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: bacchi on March 20, 2017, 12:56:32 PM
The invasion of the Confederacy put an end to the fiction that the government existed at the behest of the people... states don't have the "right" to nullify federal law... because we invaded them the one time that it's been put to the test.

You're about two steps away from "The South Shall Rise Again!" while you burn a wooden cross on my front lawn.

No kidding. Using the Confederacy as an argument in favor of libertarianism? Holy shit.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: bullcitybro on March 20, 2017, 12:59:42 PM
The invasion of the Confederacy put an end to the fiction that the government existed at the behest of the people... states don't have the "right" to nullify federal law... because we invaded them the one time that it's been put to the test.

You're about two steps away from "The South Shall Rise Again!" while you burn a wooden cross on my front lawn.

The America I live in asks that you follow certain rules.  You are not obliged to follow them, unless you want to live among us.  Life here is pretty sweet though, so I'd suggest you play along.

Yeah it's definitely great to paint people as racists without knowing them.  It makes you sound like a really great person.

The "rules" thing is a good point though.  I hope you never voice any political disagreement, and go with the flow this next four years.  After all, better be a good statist or gtfo right? You'd be very popular with all my lgbt friends here in NC with that delightful opinion.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: bullcitybro on March 20, 2017, 01:15:17 PM
I'm not really interested in having this debate here.  You can read any of the dozens of books written on this subject, but basically:

1) Slavery is obviously wrong (duh) especially if you value liberty above all else

2) Coercive violence is also wrong.

3) EVEN IF the secession of states was motivated by slavery, that still created a foreign and sovereign entity, and invading that entity is a separate moral issue from the one that forced secession.

4) The United States doesn't have the moral authority to conscript its own citizens, much less conscript them in the service of a foreign offensive war

The United States didn't even outlaw slavery in its own territories until well after the invasion had started.  The two issues can (and should) be philosophically separable when you are talking about states rights.  It is possible to believe that states have the moral right to secede and form their own unions, in any combination and for any reason, without also being pro-slavery.  It is silly that even has to be stated, but apparently here we are.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: bacchi on March 20, 2017, 01:25:20 PM
I'm not really interested in having this debate here.  You can read any of the dozens of books written on this subject, but basically:

1) Slavery is obviously wrong (duh) especially if you value liberty above all else

2) Coercive violence is also wrong.

3) EVEN IF the secession of states was motivated by slavery, that still created a foreign and sovereign entity, and invading that entity is a separate moral issue from the one that forced secession.

4) The United States doesn't have the moral authority to conscript its own citizens, much less conscript them in the service of a foreign offensive war

The United States didn't even outlaw slavery in its own territories until well after the invasion had started.  The two issues can (and should) be philosophically separable when you are talking about states rights.  It is possible to believe that states have the moral right to secede and form their own unions, in any combination and for any reason, without also being pro-slavery.  It is silly that even has to be stated, but apparently here we are.

Even if all of the above was true, it's just a really bad idea to use the Confederacy as an argument in favor of libertarianism and states' rights. I realize that there isn't a good example of a true libertarian state (kinda like communism) but the south and "it wasn't about slavery! it was about states' rights!) is not a good place to stand. There are dozens of books written on the subject that you can read.

Just trying to help. If you want to continue using this stance, don't be surprised when people are stunned and incredulous and associate libertarians with Bad Ideas.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: bullcitybro on March 20, 2017, 01:29:57 PM
I'm not really interested in having this debate here.  You can read any of the dozens of books written on this subject, but basically:

1) Slavery is obviously wrong (duh) especially if you value liberty above all else

2) Coercive violence is also wrong.

3) EVEN IF the secession of states was motivated by slavery, that still created a foreign and sovereign entity, and invading that entity is a separate moral issue from the one that forced secession.

4) The United States doesn't have the moral authority to conscript its own citizens, much less conscript them in the service of a foreign offensive war

The United States didn't even outlaw slavery in its own territories until well after the invasion had started.  The two issues can (and should) be philosophically separable when you are talking about states rights.  It is possible to believe that states have the moral right to secede and form their own unions, in any combination and for any reason, without also being pro-slavery.  It is silly that even has to be stated, but apparently here we are.

Even if all of the above was true, it's just a really bad idea to use the Confederacy as an argument in favor of libertarianism and states' rights. I realize that there isn't a good example of a true libertarian state (kinda like communism) but the south and "it wasn't about slavery! it was about states' rights!) is not a good place to stand. There are dozens of books written on the subject that you can read.

Just trying to help. If you want to continue using this stance, don't be surprised when people are stunned and incredulous and associate libertarians with Bad Ideas.

And if you actually read what I wrote, I am not using the confederacy as an example of anything.  The Confederacy was an autocratic centrally planned state where slavery was legal.  It's as far away from libertarian as you can get.   

I'm using the INVASION of the south as an example of the federal approach toward state nullification and secession, which is troubling insofar as state nullification appears to me to be the only path forward to a libertarian system here in the Americas. I'd love to see a future where Colorado and California are free to pursue their own divergent agendas in the face of a reactionary federal govt, but we've set a precedent where secession can 'legally' be met with invasion, which is SO far from what the founders had in mind.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Wexler on March 20, 2017, 01:30:30 PM
The invasion of the Confederacy put an end to the fiction that the government existed at the behest of the people... states don't have the "right" to nullify federal law... because we invaded them the one time that it's been put to the test.

You're about two steps away from "The South Shall Rise Again!" while you burn a wooden cross on my front lawn.

The America I live in asks that you follow certain rules.  You are not obliged to follow them, unless you want to live among us.  Life here is pretty sweet though, so I'd suggest you play along.

Yeah it's definitely great to paint people as racists without knowing them.  It makes you sound like a really great person.

The "rules" thing is a good point though.  I hope you never voice any political disagreement, and go with the flow this next four years.  After all, better be a good statist or gtfo right? You'd be very popular with all my lgbt friends here in NC with that delightful opinion.


Anyway, edgelords complaining about taxes as theft from mom's basement are, what, 30% of troll activity here?  Is there really so much Venn diagram overlap between them and WAR OF NORTHERN AGGRESSION people?  I always pictured the taxes as theft people more as college dropouts in the northern suburbs, but I'd still rather have them here than apologists for the civil war.  However, here we have a rare troll (rare Pepe?) who thinks treason for owning black people is justified because of federal government overreach but paying taxes is theft.  Also, waves hands, something something lgbt (???), which I think is the "I have black friends" moment in the conversation.     
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: bacchi on March 20, 2017, 01:37:29 PM
And if you actually read what I wrote, I am not using the confederacy as an example of anything.  The Confederacy was an autocratic centrally planned state where slavery was legal.  It's as far away from libertarian as you can get.   

I'm using the INVASION of the south as an example of the federal approach toward state nullification and secession, which is troubling insofar as state nullification appears to me to be the only path forward to a libertarian system here in the Americas. I'd love to see a future where Colorado and California are free to pursue their own divergent agendas in the face of a reactionary federal govt, but we've set a precedent where secession can 'legally' be met with invasion, which is SO far from what the founders had in mind.

Yeah, ok, whatever. I'll repeat what I wrote, which you apparently didn't read:

Quote
Just trying to help. If you want to continue using this stance, don't be surprised when people are stunned and incredulous and associate libertarians with Bad Ideas.

Continue railing against federal overreach and secession and invasions and Confederacy. Just don't act shocked when people dismiss your other arguments that potentially have merit.

Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Wexler on March 20, 2017, 01:39:00 PM
I'm not really interested in having this debate here.  You can read any of the dozens of books written on this subject, but basically:

1) Slavery is obviously wrong (duh) especially if you value liberty above all else

2) Coercive violence is also wrong.

3) EVEN IF the secession of states was motivated by slavery, that still created a foreign and sovereign entity, and invading that entity is a separate moral issue from the one that forced secession.

4) The United States doesn't have the moral authority to conscript its own citizens, much less conscript them in the service of a foreign offensive war

The United States didn't even outlaw slavery in its own territories until well after the invasion had started.  The two issues can (and should) be philosophically separable when you are talking about states rights.  It is possible to believe that states have the moral right to secede and form their own unions, in any combination and for any reason, without also being pro-slavery.  It is silly that even has to be stated, but apparently here we are.

Even if all of the above was true, it's just a really bad idea to use the Confederacy as an argument in favor of libertarianism and states' rights. I realize that there isn't a good example of a true libertarian state (kinda like communism) but the south and "it wasn't about slavery! it was about states' rights!) is not a good place to stand. There are dozens of books written on the subject that you can read.

Just trying to help. If you want to continue using this stance, don't be surprised when people are stunned and incredulous and associate libertarians with Bad Ideas.

And if you actually read what I wrote, I am not using the confederacy as an example of anything.  The Confederacy was an autocratic centrally planned state where slavery was legal.  It's as far away from libertarian as you can get.   

I'm using the INVASION of the south as an example of the federal approach toward state nullification and secession, which is troubling insofar as state nullification appears to me to be the only path forward to a libertarian system here in the Americas. I'd love to see a future where Colorado and California are free to pursue their own divergent agendas in the face of a reactionary federal govt, but we've set a precedent where secession can 'legally' be met with invasion, which is SO far from what the founders had in mind.

Colorado can pursue its own agenda insofar as far it does not run afoul of the constitution.  Accordingly, Colorado cannot legalize a number of practices, including slavery.  Most people find that such protection is guaranteed to be comforting and not stifling. For example, I personally do not feel hemmed in and unable to start a business, own a home, etc., because my state cannot pass laws permitting slavery. 
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: sol on March 20, 2017, 01:42:58 PM
Yeah it's definitely great to paint people as racists without knowing them.  It makes you sound like a really great person.

I didn't say anything about race.  Secession and religion, yes, but not race.  I'm not surprised you made the jump, though, because people in your position usually conflate these issues.

So let's just clarify your argument for everyone reading along, shall we?  Are you seriously suggesting that Social Security is unconstitutional because the south lost the Civil War? 

Do you realize how crazy that makes you sound?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: libertarian4321 on March 20, 2017, 01:44:46 PM
I'm a long-time Libertarian, and voracious reader, and I find Ayn Rand to be a simply DREADFUL author.

It's painful to wade through her poorly written books, with stilted, un-realistic, one-dimensional (generally ridiculous) characters.

I waded through "Atlas Shrugged" and "The Fountainhead" because so many of my Libertarian friends raved about them.

It was like doing "required reading" in HS- a chore, with no joy.

One certainly does not need to be an Ayn Rand fan to be a Libertarian. 

I was a Libertarian long before I even heard of Ayn Rand.

Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Telecaster on March 20, 2017, 03:20:27 PM
What a shock that the United States Supreme Court has failed to uphold the principles of the Kentucky and Virginia Resolutions.  The supremacy clause is only valid if the originating federal laws are, themselves, constitutional.  The only recourse in our Republic to a federal government passing unconstitutional laws IS nullification.  The Supreme Court is a rubber stamp authority, as we saw during FDR's reign, where constitutionality seldom enters into it.

Yes, if you look at historic interpretation of the constitution, states don't have the "right" to nullify federal law... because we invaded them the one time that it's been put to the test.

Oh boy.  Where to start?  Back in the 1930s culminating in 1936-37 the Supreme Court struck down a record amount of significant legislation, including the core of Roosevelt's e New Deal, the National Recovery Act (NRA) and the  Agricultural Adjustment Act (AAA), as well as minimum wage laws, and lots of other acts of Congress.   I'll leave Roosevelt's reaction and attempted solution as an exercise for the reader.  But rubber stamp?   Your claims aren't even slightly plausible.  It is like saying the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor or something.   

And "the one time" states tried nullification in one form or another is actually quite a number of times, starting with the Whiskey Rebellion 1793 all the way through the Civil Rights moment and even up until the present day with gay marriage.  The SCOTUS ruled that gay marriage is protected under the Constitution.  Not all jurisdictions have agreed with that, and yet ultimately have been forced to comply by court order (see Kim Davis and Kentucky, for a few of many examples).   Saying it was only tried one time is...kinda odd.   Saying things that are clearly not true doesn't help your argument much.     

But all that is a distraction from Sol's original point:  You are not being forced to participate in society.  You can check out if you like.  If fact, that's what Dagny Taggart and company did.   They didn't like society so they simply pulled the plug and moved away.   You are are not being held at the point of a gun. You too, can leave if you see fit and create or joint a libertarian paradise with other like-minded folks. 





Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Spork on March 20, 2017, 03:24:48 PM

"If you don't like it you can leave" is not the only option.

"If you don't like it, you can try to convince people to change the way it works" is another option.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Classical_Liberal on March 20, 2017, 06:45:07 PM
Is someone forcing you to stay?  If not, let us know how it goes when you stop volunteering to be in that society and leave! :)

lol...and now the rallying cry of the egalitarian, democratic-socialist millennials is the same as their ultra-conservative, racist, hippy-hating grandfathers.  'merica, love it or leave it. 

All things do indeed come full circle, usually in the most hilarious of ways.

'Merica love it or leave it again?... The argument is less than one page back! 

Soon It will be reiterated that's not what was meant, rather they meant what @Spork wrote above. Post modernism clearly dictates everyone's opinion is equally valid. Neoliberals couldn't possibly contradict their doctrine no matter how badly it chaps their hide in the moment... wait for it...
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Metric Mouse on March 21, 2017, 05:03:48 AM
The invasion of the Confederacy put an end to the fiction that the government existed at the behest of the people... states don't have the "right" to nullify federal law... because we invaded them the one time that it's been put to the test.

You're about two steps away from "The South Shall Rise Again!" while you burn a wooden cross on my front lawn.

The America I live in asks that you follow certain rules.  You are not obliged to follow them, unless you want to live among us.  Life here is pretty sweet though, so I'd suggest you play along.
Meh. Large numbers of people don't pay for the good they receive from America. It has almost no effect on how awesome the country is. I see no reason to force everyone to pay for everything; in fact I think it would be unfair to expect all people to pay for the services and benefits they recieve.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: hoping2retire35 on March 22, 2017, 09:03:16 AM
I think what bullcitybro is trying to get at is sort of a libertarian tenet of decentralization of power. States rights could be a big part of that; or just the idea that a group of coagulatable people have the right to make their own form of government; ie we should not be 'forced' to all be under the same leviathan of government situated in DC. Believing such a thing is in fact a way to make so that a group of people in one form or another own something like 10% of the world's land mass and and have significant control over at least 5% of the worlds people; shocking that they would not want a real check on that power. The Confederacy is a poor example of decentalization of power because it really was not an increase in that, really much more so. Secession, OTOH, (and not just limited to the political boundaries of a State), is very much in line with this idea.

I also think it is laughable that the same people that say we all need to be a part of this giant collective progressive society of 300 mil people are screaming that Trump* is not their president or he needs to be delegitimized. To be clear the only thing I like about him is that he is 'making' these people do this.

*At this point I doubt it would have mattered which Republican was the president, this level of political discourse was essentially inevitable.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: RangerOne on March 22, 2017, 01:19:00 PM

*At this point I doubt it would have mattered which Republican was the president, this level of political discourse was essentially inevitable.

You must know that is likely untrue. Do you really honestly think that if Romney had won or if a Jeb Bush or Kasich had won this cycle that people would have thrown together general riots and cried for impeachment out of the gate?

The extreme reaction against Trump is a direct result of his extreme rhetoric. A normal Republican says, we have too much immigration and may want to dial that down. Trump comes out of the gate on his campaign announcement that Mexicans and rapists and criminals and we need to build a fucking wall to keep them out.

Trump is directly responsible for a a more rapid depredation of the public discourse and we all knew it would happen. The question is will it harm it only while he is in office or has he done lasting damage?
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: hoping2retire35 on March 22, 2017, 01:26:08 PM

*At this point I doubt it would have mattered which Republican was the president, this level of political discourse was essentially inevitable.

You must know that is likely untrue. Do you really honestly think that if Romney had won or if a Jeb Bush or Kasich had won this cycle that people would have thrown together general riots and cried for impeachment out of the gate?

The extreme reaction against Trump is a direct result of his extreme rhetoric. A normal Republican says, we have too much immigration and may want to dial that down. Trump comes out of the gate on his campaign announcement that Mexicans and rapists and criminals and we need to build a fucking wall to keep them out.

Trump is directly responsible for a a more rapid depredation of the public discourse and we all knew it would happen. The question is will it harm it only while he is in office or has he done lasting damage?

As far as I am concerned anyone of those would have been the worst of the worst. I would have been the one saying 'Enough'. Who knows maybe Trump will at least keep us from going to war with Russia, doubt that would be the case with any of those.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Wexler on March 22, 2017, 02:08:27 PM

*At this point I doubt it would have mattered which Republican was the president, this level of political discourse was essentially inevitable.

You must know that is likely untrue. Do you really honestly think that if Romney had won or if a Jeb Bush or Kasich had won this cycle that people would have thrown together general riots and cried for impeachment out of the gate?

The extreme reaction against Trump is a direct result of his extreme rhetoric. A normal Republican says, we have too much immigration and may want to dial that down. Trump comes out of the gate on his campaign announcement that Mexicans and rapists and criminals and we need to build a fucking wall to keep them out.

Trump is directly responsible for a a more rapid depredation of the public discourse and we all knew it would happen. The question is will it harm it only while he is in office or has he done lasting damage?

As far as I am concerned anyone of those would have been the worst of the worst. I would have been the one saying 'Enough'. Who knows maybe Trump will at least keep us from going to war with Russia, doubt that would be the case with any of those.

I actually think Trump makes war with Russia more likely, even if it's a proxy war like in Afghanistan in the 1980s. Putin could probably invade Ukraine (again) and Trump would shrug, so it's also true that Trump's willingness to let Putin do whatever he wants makes war less likely in the short term.  However, Russia is interested in expanding its sphere of influence and seeing what it can get away with before the West engages. Trump in office is giving Putin a lot of room to push and push.  Give Trump 8 years, and Putin will be in a stronger position, will have destabilized neighboring countries, and will make the West an order of magnitude more nervous than it is today.  Eventually Trump will be out of office, and someone not beholden to Putin will be President.  They will have to deal with a far less stable situation that Trump inherited and an emboldened Putin, and that is why, in the long term, war is more likely because we elected Trump. So thanks, Trump voters. 



The price of oil clipped Putin's wings
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: MVal on April 17, 2017, 08:55:35 PM
My economic-savvy Libertarian friends, what do you make of perspectives like this? What would be your plan if we do in fact experience a currency crash?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p0E7N4Zzxxk
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Classical_Liberal on April 17, 2017, 10:13:12 PM
My economic-savvy Libertarian friends, what do you make of perspectives like this? What would be your plan if we do in fact experience a currency crash?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p0E7N4Zzxxk

I didn't watch the video, mainly because I think Harry Dent is full of shit.  If the US currency did collapse, so would many others (fiat currencies) being it's a regular use reserve currency.  It probably wont because it's still backed by middle eastern oil.  However, if it did, it would be a shit-hit-the-fan scenario.  In this thread (https://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/welcome-to-the-forum/thoughts-on-fire-in-a-declining-nation/)  we discussed the two best options in such situation being either "hunker down" or "mobility", it's a fun read.  Each would have its own preparation strategy.  If you are interested from an investment standpoint read Taleb (https://www.amazon.com/Black-Swan-Improbable-Robustness-Fragility/dp/081297381X) to see how to weather an unlikely, and largely unexpected event like US dollar collapse.
Title: Re: Who else here is a libertarian?
Post by: Telecaster on April 18, 2017, 03:26:33 PM
My economic-savvy Libertarian friends, what do you make of perspectives like this? What would be your plan if we do in fact experience a currency crash?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p0E7N4Zzxxk

I'm not libertarian, but the people predicting a currency crash flat don't understand money.