Corporatism Is Not the Free Market

The U.S. ceased to be a free market a long time ago.

When a front-running presidential contender tells the country that thanks to Barack Obama, “[w]e are only inches away from ceasing to be a free market economy,” one is left scratching one’s head. How refreshing it is, then, to hear a prominent establishment economist—a Nobel laureate yet—tell it straight:

The managerial state has assumed responsibility for looking after everything from the incomes of the middle class to the profitability of large corporations to industrial advancement. This system . . . is . . . an economic order that harks back to Bismarck in the late nineteenth century and Mussolini in the twentieth: corporatism.

Columbia University Professor Edmund S. Phelps, who won the 2006 Nobel Prize in economics, and his coauthor, Saifedean Ammous, assistant professor of economics at the Lebanese American University, write that the U.S. economy ceased to be a free market some time ago, yet the free market is blamed for the economic crisis. (The real question is whether it was ever really free.)

Phelps and Ammous condemn corporatism unequivocally.

In various ways, corporatism chokes off the dynamism that makes for engaging work, faster economic growth, and greater opportunity and inclusiveness. It maintains lethargic, wasteful, unproductive, and well-connected firms at the expense of dynamic newcomers and outsiders, and favors declared goals such as industrialization, economic development, and national greatness over individuals’ economic freedom and responsibility. Today, airlines, auto manufacturers, agricultural companies, media, investment banks, hedge funds, and much more has [sic] at some point been deemed too important to weather the free market on its own, receiving a helping hand from government in the name of the “public good.”

State-Chosen Goals

It’s great that their list includes the corporate state’s declaration of goals. Too many people are willing to accept government-set goals (such as energy independence) so long as the “private sector” is induced to achieve them. Regardless of how the goals are achieved, if government sets them, that’s statism.

The cost of corporatism is high, and Phelps and Ammous provide a partial list:

dysfunctional corporations that survive despite their gross inability to serve their customers; sclerotic economies with slow output growth, a dearth of engaging work, scant opportunities for young people; governments bankrupted by their efforts to palliate these problems; and increasing concentration of wealth in the hands of those connected enough to be on the right side of the corporatist deal.

Again, kudos to them for noting the increasing concentration of wealth. The corporate state, after all, is a form of exploitation, the victims of which are workers and consumers, who would have been better off (absolutely and comparatively) without anticompetitive privileges for the well-connected and government-induced recessions.

The authors are optimistic that time will work against the corporate state. Young people coming of age in the Internet’s decentralized and wide-open market of ideas and merchandise can’t be expected to show enthusiasm for a system that protects entrenched corporations from the forces of competition. Moreover “the legitimacy of corporatism is eroding along with the fiscal health of governments that have relied on it. If politicians cannot repeal corporatism, it will bury itself in debt and default….”

Capitalism versus the Freed Market

My main beef with Phelps and Ammous’s essay is their use of capitalism to name the economic system that corporatism corrupted. Like many others, they believe that word “used to mean” the free market. To be sure, it was used that way beginning in the mid-twentieth century. But there was an older usage (of capitalist specifically), coined by free-market liberals like Thomas Hodgskin who predated Marx, associating it with government privileges for the capital-owning class. That undertone has never left. (Long-time Freeman writer and historian Clarence B. Carson expressed misgivings about the word here.)

It’s tempting to dismiss this as mere semantics. But we are trying to communicate, aren’t we? Libertarian theorist Roderick Long, however, shows that more than semantics is involved. For Long, capitalism is what Ayn Rand called an anti-concept, a term that confuses rather than enlightens. One kind of anti-concept is the package deal, “referring to any term whose meaning conceals an implicit presupposition that certain things go together that in actuality do not.”

As a thought experiment, Long asks us to consider his coinage of zaxlebax, which he defines as “a metallic sphere, like the Washington Monument.”  Obviously this is incoherent. Nevertheless,

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  • SIV||

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  • Confusius Say||

    Inventor of shag carpet made big pile.

  • the bilover||

    The bilover is all. The bilover is in all. The bilover is coming again. Are you ready to to accept the bilover into your heart?

  • Confusius Say||

    (Hands in air) YAY-yah! It's a merACKal! (Falls over on stage and humps against any available object.) I kin feel my neocortex! Finally Officer, I kin gambol in the Agricultural City-State, Sid Meyer's Civilization! I kin behave within my evolutionary limits! Gunt! Hather!

  • Stalinist Cunt Napolitano||

    "I am ready for bilover -- not!"

  • Nothing works. Nothing.||

    There is no good way of organizing Agricultural City-Statism (Civilization,) because mass society forces people into social groups larger than the human neocortex size* evolved to process.

    There is no political salvation, anywhere. Not communism, libertarianism, capitalism, socialism, agorism, environmentalism, christianity, or the singularity.

    We're fucked until we start behaving again within our evolutionary limits.
    ______________
    * Dunbar, R.I.M. (June 1992). "Neocortex size as a constraint on group size in primates". Journal of Human Evolution 22 (6): 469–493.

  • Mustakrakish||

    I believe you are already behaving well within your evolutioary limits. Now go find somewhere to gambol.

  • Kloveniersburgwal ||

    Hi there Bob. Can you explain here why you enjoy turning people into the police for minor drug possession. You preach gamboling and yet you practice something far from it. Hypocrite gamboler.

  • Ayn Rand on Medicare||

    Invalidates Capitalism instantly. Well, according to Libertarian Logic.

  • anon||

    News flash: Ayn Rand wasn't libertarian. She hated libertarians. Try your ad hominem bullshit somewhere else dumbfuck.

  • Objectivism = variation||

    ...of Libertarianism

    Influential Libertarian Philosophers [...] Ayn Rand - the creator of the philosophy of Objectivism
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Libertarianism

    So take your weaseling bullshit somewhere else dumbfuck.

  • anon||

    Because WIKIPEDIA is a credible source. Really.

    Got a citation for that?

  • Objectivism = variation||

    Ayn Rand was an influential libertarian philosopher. I don't need a "citation", numbskull.

    It's so funny seeing Lying Libertarians try to weasel. Total idiots.

  • anon||

    Ayn Rand was an influential libertarian philosopher. I don't need a "citation", numbskull.

    Ahahahahahahahhahahahahahahaha.

    Well then, primitivism is shit. And I really don't need a citation for that.

  • killazontherun||

    WI, if you use anything but leaves to wipe your ass, you are an invalidated hypocrite. So which is it, Cottonelle, Charmin, or a rag made out of hemp you bought at the hippie's stand at the local farmer's market? Lol! You silly, silly man. How long has that tape worm up your ass gotten, btw?

  • Juice||

    Surely, he uses Indian Hair Tampons.

  • Dan||

    "All kinds of people today call themselves “libertarians,” especially something calling itself the New Right, which consists of hippies, except that they’re anarchists instead of collectivists. But of course, anarchists are collectivists. Capitalism is the one system that requires absolute objective law, yet they want to combine capitalism and anarchism. That is worse than anything the New Left has proposed. It’s a mockery of philosophy and ideology. They sling slogans and try to ride on two bandwagons. They want to be hippies, but don’t want to preach collectivism, because those jobs are already taken. But anarchism is a logical outgrowth of the anti-intellectual side of collectivism. I could deal with a Marxist with a greater chance of reaching some kind of understanding, and with much greater respect. The anarchist is the scum of the intellectual world of the left, which has given them up. So the right picks up another leftist discard. That’s the Libertarian movement." - Rand

  • ferocious bunny rabbit ||

    Try obtaining an occupational license in NAZI America, like dealing with the Bar Association. They want you to subject you to tests. Pee in a cup. Interview your preschool comrades. A stool sample. A complete day-to-day journal of your life from 18 on. A copy of all political speech you've engaged in. Lawyers hate freedom. Hate humanity. Hate civility. Hate happiness. We have been destroyed by our lawyers. I'm headed to New Guinea to join a tribe with no lawyers. Life is short, too short to be controlled by miserable, pretentious asshats and their ugly women.

  • Richard Simmons's long pants||

    May I suggest a career in aerobics instruction? I don't believe you need an occupational license for that. Yet.

  • Circling Highway Buzzard||

  • ||

    Having an independent certification is not the same thing as municipal licensure.

    As a matter of fact, absent government licenses there would be all sorts of private certifications available for any number of occupations and the market would determine the value (if any) that they had.

  • Mouth Breathing Oregonian||

    Ranting lunatics like yourself have no business being lawyers. Thank god for occupational licensing to keep the sheep -- I mean public -- safe from the likes of you, ferocious bunny rabbit.

  • Jolly Roger, 1776||

    Ours is a papered existence.
    Generations of lawyers have bequeathed utter misery.
    Deal with it.
    Or live in your car.
    No wait, that's illegal.

  • Ace||

    Melodramatic tonight, are we? Sitaroundanddrinkpennaroyaltea histrionics have no place in a serious, top-buttoned place like the reason comment section.

  • Jolly Roger, 1776||

    Oh, and, fuck you.

  • El Duderino||

    Thankfully, I havent yet had to shit in a cup for a job, considering how bad my aim was with pissing in a cup. Try obtaining ANY kind of FINRA designation, they are constantly keeping an eye on everything you do. One of these days, they will ask me to once again update my U4 form and I will just write "Fuck you" on every line, signed, with contempt "El 'Fuck you' Duderino".

    And to add to the overall clusterfuck that is hyper-regulation, none of the information I provide actually prevents me from commiting a crime because if I am a criminal, I am not going to declare $10,000 from pimping on my goddamn U4.

  • Stalinist Cunt Napolitano||

    "I can force you to behave however I want."

  • No True Scotsman||

    Corporatism = Capitalism. But, like the Communists, Capitalists too like to play the No True Scotsman game.

  • "Furious" Styles||

    No True Scotsman? Are you really going to argue that?

  • Pure® Capitalism||

    ...is on the shelf, right next to True™ Communism.

    Are you really going to argue anything different?

  • ||

    True™ Communism works, but it has never been tried.

  • BigT||

    Many religious orders function as communist organizations. Key feature is that participation is voluntary and reversible, thus weeding out abusers.

  • Colonel_Angus||

    Except in scientology.

  • Southerner||

    "Communist" is a word loaded, fairly or not, with Marxist connotations. The word you're seeking is "commune" as in "Many religious orders function as communes." Modern-day monastaries and kibbutzim are examples of some of these successful communes. The voluntary participation is part of what makes the difference, the other part being that members know each other personally and do generally hold each other accountable for putting in the work to be productive.

    Also, these communes usually aren't allowed to get bigger than a certain size, which helps factor out all the social anonymity and bureaucratic inefficiency that plagues larger organizations. Every time a government tries to emulate these communes, the size and scale alone are enough to ensure the utter corruption and collapse of any "communities" it tries to build.

  • ||

    Semantics is the changing meaning of words. Capitalism once meant the absence of government involvement in business. Non-involvement and the government fabrication called corporations can't be true at the same time. Capitalism has changed to mean the government does what is best for corporations- and vice versa.

    I am no longer a capitalist.

  • Gov't=Biz Mid Mgt. Always. ||

    Government has always been the best that business could purchase, for 10,000 years.

    "Agriculture creates government." ~Richard Manning, Against the Grain, p.73

  • Jolly Roger, 1776||

    Why do states like Alaska, with no agriculture, have more government than other states like Nebraska that have shit tons of agriculture?

  • ||

    Cause they only have 4 companies handling the shit-ton = not enough money to buy more politicians.

  • ||

    oil extraction is a utility service that must be regulated by gov't to ensure pollution, and other controls are met. Further, AK has many DODefense facilities.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Nitwit Equivocator Who Does Not Have A Clue Of What "No True Scotsman" Means,

    Corporatism =/= Capitalism.

    Corporatism is actually a form of socialism, in which costs are socialized while profits remain private.

  • Old "Soviet" Mexican||

    Using the same Communist playbook that says: It wasn't True Communism, it was "State Capitalism."

    Same shit, different day.

  • Jason||

    Corporatism is very similar to Syndicalism.

    I suggest you read The Coming Corporate State.

  • old guy||

    Can't read .lit, got .pdf?

  • old guy||

    Got it, nevermind.

  • Stalinist Cunt Napolitano||

    "Yes, thanks for the help, NTS. I am always looking for intellectual defenders of the Big State."

  • ballz||

    Mussolini sings "The ass a hole song"

  • ||

    Absolutely correct, Richman. There are no longer truly free markets in any industrial nation.

    That is why I am perplexed by those who whimsically pine for a past that will never return since simple interventions have proven so popular (like the FDIC, FDA, and FASB/SEC).

    Its a better investment of resource to fight for more personal freedman than it is for a zero footprint regulatory environment.

  • ||

    That is why I am perplexed by those who whimsically pine for a past that will never return since simple interventions have proven so popular (like the FDIC, FDA, and FASB/SEC).

    Because you think "popular" equals efficient or right or just? Mob rule is OK with you because it is popular? Wow.

  • ||

    No, I don't. But we will win the legal MJ fight soon. We will win legal sports books fairly soon. Gay marriage too.

    Getting rid of the FDA? No chance. I won't spend a minute on it.

  • Jeffersonian||

    Somehow the idea of living in Peronist Argentina or Fascist Italy doesn't seem any more charming when rampant ass-fucking is the sole benefit reaped in exchange.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Bet anyone here $3.50, shrike has a cum-stained picture of Mussolini next to his couch.

  • KOCHsucking is more fun||

    The KOCH Oil residue gives away whose cum.

  • seezly,||

    FDA to squeeze out mom and pop for mum and pup, sin taxes in the last seconds for lostwages, and the most fabUllusss sensible shoes at the ceremony AND the reception. SHRIEEEEEEEKKEKEKKKEEKKKK FOR YEr assramminnn

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Koch has nothing to do with this.

  • killazontherun||

    Yeah but, shrike will bust out into a dozen other handles when challenged. Expect Orin around sometime before evening.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Fuck Orin. Yet another liberal candyass.

  • ||

    I can solve our debt overnight, simply pass a orgasm tax, and put a wicked dominatrix as tax collector.

  • MJ||

    So your ambitions are limited to the small potatoes issues?

  • ||

    I am perplexed as to why people don't just jam their tongues as far up the Dems' collective asshole as I have.

  • KOCHsucking is more fun||

  • EDG reppin' LBC||

    FASB isn't a governmental regulatory agency. It is a private, non-profit company created to standardize accounting standards. The SEC uses the FASB standards, so both the government and private corporations "speak the same accounting language".

  • ||

    Yes, that is why I use them as an example. In anarcho-libertarian land there are no mandated standards. In the land of reality capitalists prefer there are standards that facilitate communication.

    NACHA is another one.

    I have real world experience much unlike the Libertopia/conservatives that make up the peanut gallery here amongst the comment jerkdom.

  • EDG reppin' LBC||

    I guess I like FASB because it was a (private) body set up so investors could analyze financial statements in an apples to apples way. NACHA is great, but again, it is a trade organization created by the private corporations it serves.

    You and I will have to disagree about the SEC, because I don't see the need for it. As well the FDA, EPA, D of Ed. etc.

    Although you are right, they will never be abolished, I feel it is important to constantly oppose them in an effort to stem their encroachment.

  • Colonel_Angus||

    Don't forget the FTC and niche regulators like STB. I have a deep hatred for the feds fucking dickstepping all over investment, often in favor of companies with large market presence.

  • EDG reppin' LBC||

    Don't worry Colonel. I want to rinse all the alphabet soup down the drain.

  • Winston Smith||

    You would make a great co-worker, shrike.

  • anon||

    If you enjoy slamming your dick in ovens, yes.

  • anon||

    Yes, that is why I use them as an example. In anarcho-libertarian land there are no mandated standards.

    Just because a standard isn't mandated doesn't mean a standard doesn't exist. See: pretty much every PC part ever.

  • RoAon PaUol's Coch||

    I am sure shrikee has invested in the Defense Industry, especially after WarChief Barry swore to cut the defense budget, right?

  • ||

    Actually, the FASB is now under the firm hand of the Treasury, and has been since PCOAB/SOX went into effect.

  • Joe||

    I am figuratively going to start using the word zaxlebax! Who's with me?

  • Sum Gai||

    Impose the future on that.

  • Joe||

    Ironically, I have no idea what you just said. Do you mean give an example?

    "Is that a zaxlebax in your pocket or are you just happy to see me?"

  • Quark||

    I could sell you some zazlebax, but it'll cost you at least two bars of gold-pressed latinum.

  • ||

    It's three zaxlebaxes.

  • EDG reppin' LBC||

    I prefer the more formal Beeblebrox, instead.

  • Ska||

    I'll just call him Phil (fucking cockblocking bastard).

  • ferocious bunny rabbit ||

    How can they claim to have a free market when you cant sell illegal substances or love?

  • Almanian||

    "...that rabbit's DYNAMITE!"

  • igilmore||

    Does this article give a link or a citation to where the Phelps/Ammous article being quoted?

    Am I just missing it?

  • There is no "we"||

    "Capitalism" and "socialism" are terms best used as having specific, non-comprehensive meanings.

    Capitalism is private-person/private-corporate ownership of the "means of production." Socialism is public/governmental ownership of the "means of production."

    So limited, the two terms can be used with clear, specific defined meaning by people across the ideological spectrum. But the words are "weaponized" by turning them into comprehensive, multi-pronged umbrella terms for everything a given proponent loves or hates.

    You can have socialism and a flat tax. You can have capitalism and universal health insurance. You can have socialism and own your own home. You can have capitalism and a "Buffet Rule."

    Once the words are weaponized, they may gain a little force, but they lose nearly all meaning. Socialism suddenly gets used in the same breath as shariah, and capitalism gets used in the same breath as Foxconn. One is reduced to a futile discourse -- argument without debate.

  • There is no "we"||

    "Buffett Rule" rather.

  • Confusius Say||

    Buffet Rule? Too long at buffet get man chewed out.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Next, "we" should tell us how the phrase "libertarian socialist" is *not* a contradiction in terms.

  • There is no "I"||

    in socialism.....oh, wait.

  • Colonel_Angus||

    Your definition of capitalism is at odds with the definition of capitalize. To capitalize, means to take action to benefit from an opportunity, and this meaning goes beyond business investments. Therefore, capitalism occurs in any system, but the word does not comprehensively indicate a free market. It is also acceptable to refer to a wide variety of market manipulation by the government as socialist policy.

  • Acceptable by whom? ||

    SOME PEOPLE SAY...

  • Colonel_Angus||

    If it is done to influence market decisions, or "create jobs", or "provide a public good", or "stimulate an industry" (alternative energy), or some shit about "market failures", socialism is a good enough term. Social engineering=socialism.

  • Privation Property=Social Engi||

    ...neering, to enforce Gambol Lockdown on Non-State people out hunting and gathering a free lunch. There is such a thing, you know; it's just not profitable for the elite to allow it.

  • Colonel_Angus||

    I eat things that I kill or find all the time. Do you have a public waterway, forest preserve, state park, or national park near you? Everything in there rightfully belongs to you, if you take possession of it first. Gather and consume all the three leaved things you can find.

  • Confusius Say||

    I dropped a deer a few days ago. Put a broadhead through the neck.
    When did you hunt last?

  • Did you get a license? Oh.||

    Libertards with Licenses. hehe

  • Confusius Say||

    Did you get a license? Oh.|2.3.12 @ 9:06PM|#
    Libertards with Licenses. hehe

    You gonna turn me in? Not like anybody hears a gunshot.

  • Colonel_Angus||

    I'm not much of a hunter. I fish, and I try to shoot some animals I don't really care for. I'm also an opportunity collector of edible plants and shrooms when I'm doing outdoorsy shit. I don't really pay attention to regulations but I won't do anything that is dangerous to people. Fuck the conservation po'lice.

  • Colonel_Angus||

    My fishing license has been expired for over a year. And I fish with too many lines and hooks, and use the wrong kind of nets. Oh, and jug fishing is a big nono.

  • Who give a shit?||

    You don't see Indians still out living a non-State lifeway of hunting and gathering, and you know it.

    Libetards are always dishonest, and posit living alone in the woods as equivalent to the lifeways before 1492.

  • Confusius Say||

    I'm also an opportunity collector of edible plants and shrooms when I'm doing outdoorsy shit.

    Then you know several orders of magnitude more about it than Sandbox Gamboler does. He "gathers" his EBT. He wouldn't know a mushroom unless it came in a can.

    Fishing was my first love, when I was so young girls were just funny-looking boys.

  • Your philosophy is debunked||

    So you attack White Indian personally.

    You lose.

  • Jason Godesky||

    Man, am I punchable or what?

  • ||

    The ultimate in backfeifengesicht.

  • ||

    No, he's shown that you have no intention of practicing what you preach. Put up or shut up, Godesky.

  • What I preach...||

    ...is the real history of humanity, not the bullshit you believe.

    It doesn't matter what I want to do or not, city-Statism (civilization) is aggressively invasive and occupational. And Libertarians whitewash that aggression.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Tell us how billions of people could possibly live the lifestyle you preach, Jason.

  • Civilis||

    Jason (or Bob) can't; to him, the death of billions is a feature, not a bug.

    Scarily enough, the fact that the only method he has to bring down the evils of agriculture is to troll on a web page is more than sufficient proof that his philosophy is crap.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Especially since he refuses to live the very lifestyle he bleats about on a daily basis.

  • anon||

    You can have socialism and a flat tax. You can have capitalism and universal health insurance. You can have socialism and own your own home. You can have capitalism and a "Buffet Rule."

    Nope.

  • no we||

    A denial as weak and insipid as it is categorical and short.

  • anon||

    "Brevity is the soul of wit."

  • Mr. FIFY||

    "Libertarian socialism".

    Again, and I've said this before... that's like mixing axle grease and vinegar and calling the result "Italian dressing".

  • ||

    Socialism and Capitalism are generally accepted as being economic methods, separate from any social services that the state may offer. Taxes, UHC, private property (other than businesses) have no bearing on whether a country is socialist or capitalist. How their companies

  • Hope This Helps||

    Capitalism is a social system based on the recognition of individual rights, including property rights, in which all property is privately owned.

    The recognition of individual rights entails the banishment of physical force from human relationships: basically, rights can be violated only by means of force. In a capitalist society, no man or group may initiate the use of physical force against others. The only function of the government, in such a society, is the task of protecting man’s rights, i.e., the task of protecting him from physical force; the government acts as the agent of man’s right of self-defense, and may use force only in retaliation and only against those who initiate its use; thus the government is the means of placing the retaliatory use of force under objective control.

    Ayn Rand, “What Is Capitalism?” Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal, 19

  • There is no "we"||

    If there is a government, all property can't be privately owned. Are the cops going to rent their guns by the hour from some private vendor?

    In the Randian utopia, the SWAT teams would stop going after the crack dealers and just empty their machine guns into Homestead Strikers. Thus those who "initiate force" would be met with the "agents of self-defense."

    Rand's "capitalism" is nothing more than Pinkerton-detective communism, in which the taxpayer extravagantly funds the suppression of propertyless labor, and nothing else.

  • Hope This Helps||

    Pinkerton-detective communism

    I laugh and laugh.

  • Pure®Capitalism=Right to TAKE||

    Pure® Capitalism = True™ Communism = 0/0

    Humans don't work the way the Capitalist/Communist ideologues want them to be social engineered.

  • Civilis||

    Humans don't work the way primitivists want them to. Proof? History.

  • Invisible Hand=Personal Savior||

    Nobody expects that Randish Inquisition.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Next, "we" will dazzle us with more bullshit.

    Maybe not in this thread, but at some point in the near future, at least.

  • anon||

    Ayn Rand was a decent writer and proposed many ideas, but she is far from the authority on Capitalism. Try again.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: There is no brain,

    If there is a government, all property can't be privately owned. Are the cops going to rent their guns by the hour from some private vendor?


    Just like it happens how - they're called "security guards."

    In the Randian utopia, the SWAT teams would stop going after the crack dealers and just empty their machine guns into Homestead Strikers.


    I see. So you think that a Randian utopia there would be crack dealers? Interesting.

    Thus those who "initiate force" would be met with the "agents of self-defense."


    You mean like it happens now?

  • Justin Oliver||

    If there is a government, all property can't be privately owned.

    A proper government would not possess legal ownership, since a government has no rights. It could be said that the government would hold the property in guardianship for citizens, who would have the right to dispossess the government of that property by whatever legal procedures (such as voting or secession) formally exist.

  • Pure®Capitalism=Right to TAKE||

    • Is the right to take a negative or positive right?

    • Since it is any white person's right, is it an individual right or a collective right?

    "[The Native Americans] didn't have any rights to the land ... Any white person who brought the element of civilization had the right to take over this continent." ~Ayn Rand, US Military Academy at West Point, March 6, 1974

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Pure White Imbecile = No brain,

    Is the right to take a negative or positive right?


    The right to take what? Aspirin?

  • Trail of Tears||

    Ol' Statist Poodle has to studiously avoid the obvious of what the TAKERS took. LOLibertard!

  • Confusius Say||

    Joke like sex: neither good when not get it.

  • White Imbecile||

    Is too incompetent to express coherent or even grammatically correct ideas:

    the obvious [sic] of what the TAKERS took.
  • City-Statist Poodle boy...||

    ...wants to be an Editor, just like all Libertards, so he's showing off. He proofread long time.

  • Old Mexican||

    And I laughed, and laughed!

    Because White Imbecile would cry like a little wussy girl and shit his pants if having to face a bunch of squirrels stealing his hard-earned gatherings if having to live in his beloved "original affluent society."

    Like a little girl - waa waa waa!

  • Poodle's Fear of Wilderness||

    Psychologically projecting fear of wilderness again?

  • ||

    Deflect, deflect, deflect, Godesky. Is that all you can do?

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: White Imbecile,

    Psychologically projecting fear of wilderness again?


    Want to put that one to the test, little girl?

  • anon||

    Why are you so in love with Ayn Rand?

    Go masturbate onto a pic of her or something. Then come up with something worth talking about.

  • And whose tribe||

    blocks free exploration?!?!?

  • ||

    The problem with this definition is that it can mean way too many things.

  • Hope This Helps||

    ^
    See above.

  • ||

    Who's that in the picture? It looks like Boo Radley.

  • Hope This Helps||

    It's Boosolini.

  • ||

    Was he the guy that fondled Scout?

  • Hope This Helps||

    No. He's the guy who got lynched by some angry Dagos.

  • ||

    Do these things usually whoosh over your head, or does your morphine drip need adjusting?

  • Bingo||

    Fuck off rather

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Jason Godesky =/= rather.

  • ||

    Are the cops going to rent their guns by the hour from some private vendor?

    Those ones who can't (or won't) afford to own the tools of their trade, might.

    Pinkerton-detective communism, in which the taxpayer extravagantly funds the suppression of propertyless labor

    Obviously you never lived in a "socialist country"; I did. There "propertyless labor" couldn't even strike, and when they did, martial law was declared over them. And there were no taxpayers to "extravagantly fund" the government's gang, the police: people got paid whatever the govt., the owner of the "means of production", have seen fit. You know, "from each according to his abilities, to each according to his needs".

  • You're not Swedish or French||

    Oh wow, another personal anecdote from anonymous, using "obviously." Who can resist such prowess?

  • ||

    Te meg egy köcsög vagy, aki még csak elképzelni sem tudja hogy valaki élt (sőt felnőtt) a Magyar Népköztársaságban.

  • You're not Swedish or French||

    Din mammas äckliga fittkuk.

    Va te faire foutre, trouduc.

  • ||

    Well, "we" likes to hold forth on true socialism, where the "means of production" are communally owned. I lived under such arrangement for a quarter century; I do claim firsthand knowledge of and experience with such a system. And it wasn't pretty.

  • Capitalism isn't pretty either||

    I do claim firsthand knowledge of and experience with such a system.

  • ||

    ... and we're back to the exact point of the article: is it capitalism or corporatism? and which one is responsible for the not pretty aspect?

  • Capitalism isn't pretty||

    Unless you're going to play the No True Scotsman card. Communists do that all the time, blaming the failure of the Soviet Union, not on the failure of communism, but on the corruption of communism.

    It's like capitalists and communists go to the same fundamentalist church.

  • ||

    Not exactly. The "true socialist"/communist church is burnt to the ground; the capitalist church is torn by repeated earthquakes, but still stands. The question is: is there a way to provide seismically more sound foundation for the capitalist church or should people try to prop it up with the sooth-covered beams from the burnt-down church?

  • It still stands? Hell, you say||

    This whole article is about how it doesn't. LOL Make up your mind.

  • ||

    Yes it stands: the "means of production" are private property (mostly).

  • So now we're back to CORRUPTED||

    You really do have the communist/capitalist apologetics playbook down pat.

  • ||

    And you're full of shit, as usual.

  • Neoteny = Communist playbook||

    applied to Capitalism.

  • ||

    Luckily, the corner bar of hedonism will still be around, damaged but still pumping out the booze.

  • White Imbecile||

    is too incompetent to succeed:

    I do claim firsthand knowledge of and experience with such a system.
  • City-Statist Poodle boy...||

    ...is less successful than WI.

  • Confusius Say||

    Classy, boy. Where do you kiss your mother with that tongue?

  • Confusius Say||

    Hungary, huh? I never met a people so passionate about soup. My big favorite was a creamy paprika beef stew with dumplings. Wonderful stuff!

  • ||

    Glad that you liked it... yeah, Hungarians know the technology of "tasty": spices in hot fat to carry it around on the tongue.

  • CatoTheElder||

    "The purpose of Newspeak was not only to provide a medium of expression for the world-view and mental habits proper to the devotees of IngSoc, but to make all other modes of thought impossible."

    http://www.newspeakdictionary.com/ns-prin.html

  • ||

    The strong Whorf-Sapir stance has long been discredited.

  • Almanian||

    Well, I can see H&R will be a wasteland for a while till someone needs to go gather again and can break away from its hand-woven computer for awhile.

    See you Reasonoids down the road.

    Happy Stoopid Bowl to everyone, even the trolls!

  • Can't Compete, eh? ||

    LOL

  • Confusius Say||

    Wassamatter? The boys won't have sleep-overs with you any more?

  • ||

    hand-woven computer

    The smoke signal/USB interface must be fascinating.

  • Collectivist military INTERNET||

    And, jeeesh, you're on it.

  • Confusius Say||

    Oh, I thought I was on AlGoreNet.

  • Sam Grove||

    How to tell if it's a free market:

    If there's a black market, it's not a free market.

  • No city-State market is free.||

    Civilization (City-Statism) is always aggressive, even the self-styled "free market" type. The market fundamentalists just whitewash the aggression.

  • I||

    I, too, laugh and laugh.

  • White Imbecile||

    Has problems with understanding concepts:

    The market fundamentalists just whitewash the aggression.
  • Statist Poodle in Denial again||

    Forget about the Trail of Tears already?

  • Mr. FIFY||

    "Forget about the Trail of Tears, already."

    FIFY'd. No charge.

  • Confusius Say||

    the self-styled "free market" type . . . is always aggressive

    Aggressive, definitions 2-4, I agree.
    2. making an all-out effort to win or succeed; competitive: an aggressive basketball player.
    3. vigorously energetic, especially in the use of initiative and forcefulness: an aggressive salesperson.
    4. boldly assertive and forward; pushy: an aggressive driver.

  • Non Aggression Principle||

    Confuz-Us shitbird. You know what aggression means sociopolitically. Force.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Confusius Say,

    There's nothing "aggressive" about the market.

  • "Free" Markets rely on FORCE||

    Our system of private property in land FORCES landless men to work for others; to work in factories, stores, and offices, whether they like it or not. Wherever access to land is free, men work only to provide what they actually need or desire. Wherever the white man has come in contact with savage cultures this fact becomes apparent. There is for savages in their native state no such sharp distinction between "work" and "not working" as clocks and factory whistles have accustomed the white man to accept. They cannot be made to work regularly at repetitive tasks in which they have no direct interest except by some sort of duress. Disestablishment from land, like slavery, is a form of DURESS. The white man, where slavery cannot be practiced, has found that he must first disestablish the savages from their land before he can force them to work steadily for him. Once they are disestablished, they are in effect STARVED into working for him and into working as he directs. Only after he has made it impossible for them to support themselves as they desire, does be find it possible to drive them to work for him according to approved factory techniques, with sharp distinctions between the time devoted to productive labor and the time devoted to rest or play.

    This Ugly Civilization
    Dr. Ralph Borsodi
    New York: Simon and Schuster, 1 9 2 9

  • ||

    Borsodi also wrote in the quoted book:

    Sometimes I see the factory as a reincarnation of the fabled Wandering Jew. Where the Wandering Jew directed his footsteps, there came the Black Plague. Restlessly the Wandering Jew pushed on into every region of the globe. Behind him he left regions writhing in miseries as to the source of which the sufferers were ignorant.

    Smooth.

    If we're talking of Mr. Borsodi, he was a doctor of what?

  • neoteny's dodge and weave||

    Disestablishment from land, like slavery, is a form of DURESS.

    Is that sentence true, or not?

  • ||

    Hehe; according to Borsodi, the Wandering (Gamboling?) Jew carried the Black Plague. Care to defend that thesis?

    So what was he a doctor of? Romantic antisemitism?

  • neoteny's dodge and weave||

    Disestablishment from land, like slavery, is a form of DURESS.

    Is that sentence true, or not?

    Or you can keep dodging and weaving, neoteny.

  • ||

    Did the Wandering (Gamboling?) Jew carry the Black Plague or not?

    And Borsodi's doctorate is still murky...

  • Neoteny = Communist playbook||

    Don't know, neoteny.

    Do you want to keep denying that Capitalism is built on a pile of skulls as high as that of Communism?

  • ||

    Don't know, neoteny.

    Hey, you were so sure a minute ago; what's this sudden admission of lack of omniscience?

    I don't get it: gamboling (wandering?) by American natives is peachy, but the same wandering (gamboling?) by Eurasian Jews is the spreading of the Black Plague?

    Romanticism mixed with hardcore antisemitism, Nietzscheian will to power, glorification of soil, heroization of the self-sufficient farmer who is in touch with his roots... starts to sound like something Alfred Rosenberg would have approved.

    If I were you, I would stop quoting Mr. Borsodi; it seems that the totality of his theories leave much to be desired.

  • Neoteny = Communist playbook||

    You keep dodging and weaving around Dr. Borsodi's poignant quote:

    Disestablishment from land, like slavery, is a form of DURESS.

    Because you know it's true, and you're trying to whitewash that Capitalism wasn't built on a Trail of Tears.

  • ||

    Another quote from Borsodi:

    Men are not equal.

    Their inequality is inexorable.

    And that they should be equal is undesirable.

    So how come that you quote Borsodi in support of equal access to land?

  • Neoteny = Communist playbook||

    You keep dodging and weaving around Dr. Borsodi's poignant quote:

    Disestablishment from land, like slavery, is a form of DURESS.

    Because you know it's true, and you're trying to whitewash that Capitalism wasn't built on a Trail of Tears.

    But it's funny watching "neoteny" twist in the wind.

  • ||

    You selectively quote a romantic antisemite, and ignore his other pronunciations where he shows his true colors.

    Gamboling for you and Native Americans, but the Wandering (Gamboling?) Jew brings the Black Plague & leaves "regions writhing in miseries as to the source of which the sufferers were ignorant."

    Talk about intellectual bankruptcy...

  • Neoteny Intellectual Bankrupt||

    He won't address the issue that self-styled "Free" Market Capitalism uses violence to disestablish people from the land, just as Stalin did to the Non-State hunter gatherers in Siberia.

    All agricultural city-Statist schemes work the same: invade and occupy.

    Neoteny, the Commie/Capitalist/Statist has to dodge that issue.

  • ||

    Hey, Borsodi said that people shouldn't be equal. That's a direct call to invasion & occupation.

    Nice theorists you embrace there, buddy.

  • Neoteny Intellectual Bankrupt||

    I don't "embrace" a theorist. I quote the fellow when he's right, and this is the only quote I've ever quoted of him. You're making mountains out of molehills absolutely nothing.

    Meanwhile, you dodge and weave. Just to bring up again what you dodge and weave:

    Disestablishment from land, like slavery, is a form of DURESS.

    I suppose Stalin didn't like to talk about the pile of skulls that Communism was built on. Neoteny definitely is like Stalin, not wanting to talk about the pile of skulls Capitalism is built upon.

    Care to address the issue, neoteny? Or should I just thank you for proving your intellectual bankruptcy?

  • ||

    I quote the fellow when he's right

    Yeah, quote selectively; and when it is shown what else the 'theorist' wrote, then you disclaim that. Situational ethics: gamboling for you and Native Americans, but Wandering Jews carried the Black Plague & left "regions writhing in miseries as to the source of which the sufferers were ignorant."

    You're so rotten that it stinks through the Internet.

  • Neoteny=Intellectual Bankrupt||

    Yes, neoteny, I quoted selectively. If an author is wrong, I disclaim it. You have a problem with that? You've just proven your intellectual bankruptcy.

    Strange thing, though, you are focusing selectively on what he got wrong, and not focusing on what Dr. Borsodi got right:

    Disestablishment from land, like slavery, is a form of DURESS.

    Care to address the Trail of Tears on which the so-called "free market" is based?

  • ||

    Nope; Borsodi got everything wrong... that's why I went and looked up his writings, so you can't claim that some misunderstood genius provided you with the Stone of Wisdom.

    Free exchange is the basis of the Trail of Tears? You really should stop chugging that Kool-Aid...

  • "One" thing isn't "everything"||

    But thanks for showing how you dodge and weave.

    "Trail of Tears" isn't Kool-Aid, it's real stuff. And you're in denial.

  • ||

    Told ya that you're full of shit... you selectively quote one thing, pronounce it 'right', then wash your hands all of the other statements.

    "Trail of Tears" isn't Kool-Aid, it's real stuff. And you're in denial.

    But the link between free exchange and the Trail of Tears is Kool-Aid... nice moving of goalposts, though.

    You're stupid. Inexorably, terminally stupid. You bait with a question, and when the emptiness of the claim is shown, then you switch to something entirely unrelated.

    But I'm glad that I've looked up Borsodi; at least people now know what a fuckup he was... worthy to be quoted by you.

  • ||

    Neoteny is objectively whuppin' your ass, Pale Rider. But I will admit, he could be the reincarnation of Stalin and I would still back him against you, you fucking Malthusian.

  • Malthusian Dieoff Fantasy||

    I didn't write Atlas Shrugged, the Malthusian Dieoff fantasy whereby the world's resources are sabotaged (Wyatt's Torch) so that earth may be restored to its Objectivist carrying capacity.

  • Selective quoting is good||

    Unless you want to believe everything Issac Newton had to say about the Bible.

    Newtonian physics: good. Rants on Revalation: bad.

    "Neoteny" can't figure that out. Stupid Libertard.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    The Trail of Tears is long gone in history. It can't be undone.

    Get the fuck over it.

  • anon||

    Yes, neoteny, I quoted selectively. If an author is wrong, I disclaim it. You have a problem with that? You've just proven your intellectual bankruptcy.

    So, you quote your authors selectively, then choose quotes taken specifically out of context by a philosopher to attack an economic system (rather than an economist)?

    Holy fuck, you are a moron.

    I really do hope you die in a fire. Or better yet, die from hitting a deer on your way home. A gamboling deer.

  • anon||

    If we're talking of Mr. Borsodi, he was a doctor of what?

    From this, it appears eugenics.

  • Kloveniersburgwal ||

    White Indian also writes under a different name. His real name is Bob Black and he enjoys turning in people to the police for drug crimes. Here he is writing about his evening with a guy who wrote a book explaining how to turn poppies into opium. He ended up ratting him out to the cops. He is quite proud of that fact.

    http://www.spunk.org/texts/wri.....01654.html

  • Kloveniersburgwal = Predator||

    He enjoys pederasty with juvenile sheep.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Bob Black is Jason Godesky?

  • Watoosh||

    It seemed pretty clear to me that the police call had very little to do with the guy's predilection for opium. Call me a rotten statist, but if a doped-up maniac shows ability and willingness to shoot me (which is clearly overkill even on his own property), I would try to contact the authorities as well - and I'm someone who actually wants all drugs to be legal.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    That's different, Watoosh. Justifiable.

  • Kloveniersburgwal ||

    Hi Bob or White Indian. Tells about that time you called the cops on someone for minor drug possession. Seems the opposite of live and let gambol, doesn't it?

  • Libertarian Child Sex Abuse||

    It was your using drugs for sex with minors, Kloveniersburgwal, if you'd recall correctly.

  • Kloveniersburgwal ||

    I got it didn't I, Mr Black White Indian?

  • Kloveniersburgwal = Predator||

    Kloveniersburgwal = Pederastic Predator of juvenile sheep. Gotcha!

  • Kloveniersburgwal ||

    Here is some of the crap that WI, sorry Bob Black, writes under his other name. It is utter shit and that is why he doesnt link to it ever here on these pages as he would get laughed at. Read it for a chuckle or two......

    http://www.primitivism.com/abolition.htm

  • But I thought I was Jason!||

    LOLOL!

  • Kloveniersburgwal ||

    Sorry I got your number bob. Someone had to reveal your name on these boards.

  • Forever Alone||

  • Kloveniersburgwal ||

    So I take it that white Indian is not going to tell us about his evening with Jim Hogshire?

  • Jim Hogshire||

    You were there too, Kloveniersburgwal.

  • Kloveniersburgwal ||

    This is White Indian's finest work yet. It is a shame he doesn't talk about it more...

    http://www.seesharppress.com/black.html

  • Jesse Walker||

    Unless Bob Black has had some sort of brain damage or psychotic breakdown, he is not White Indian. The two have completely different styles of writing, and different ideologies too.

  • Soviet Psychiatry is "IN"||

    Libertards always go for the "dissent = insanity." So Stalinist you are, Jesse.

  • Jesse Walker||

    See what I mean? The real Bob Black would be smart enough to know that isn't even remotely what I meant, and witty enough to come up with a riposte that doesn't require him to pretend that's what I meant. Unless he's suffered brain damage. But I think I would have heard about it if he had.

  • Soviet Psychiatry is "IN"||

    See what I mean?

  • Kloveniersburgwal ||

    So gambol lockdown does not include calling the police on someone using a plant?

  • Jason Godesky||

    I've got Bob's cock in my mouth as I type.

    Uh, and, uh, gambol lockdown and so forth.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Never have understood Major Shackbrah's obsession with a lifestyle that is completely incompatible for billions of people to live.

    Just the sheer insanity of being able to shit anywhere you want, and claim that piece of dirt as yours for however long you need to shit on it, is boggling enough. Imagine billions of people trying to forage for daily food, let alone all the other strategerizin' it takes just to live from day to day.

    It's kinda fun, though, watching him come back again and again. I think he digs on being verbally slapped... he probably gets off on it the way "M" does when he reads the works of Karl Marx.

  • M||

    Honestly, to imitate the way the free-market crowd talks about liberals for a minute - you people have collected absolutely the biggest pile of bullshit to have ever walked the earth, to dress up your autism-level sociopathic urge to systematically eliminate all possible assistance to the stupidity and ground-into-the-gears hell of anyone who doesn't have a college degree, and then cloak it under the self-righteous, hypocritical bullshit of 'dependency'.

    Killing off food stamps to "free" working poor people from "dependency" is a lot like Joseph Stalin's forced collectivization / confiscation of kulak small farms in order to "liberate" them from the chains of "capitalist hell".

    In both cases, the point is to go out there and reduce the absolute standards of living of the people you claim to be championing so you can keep slightly more of your pig surplus.

    Goverment food stamps are "dependency" like your dad paying for your college education is "dependency", or like winning the lottery is "dependency". It's one hundred percent doublespeak. It's just free shit for people who could sorely use a little more free shit, and if they had gotten all the free shit shoveled at you dependent motherfuckers, sucking at the tits of your throughly privileged and subsidized upbringing, then they too would no longer need the miserable third-tier free shit offered by the government.

  • M||

    You people, starting with Rev. Blue Moon and moving onward, are absolutely out of your fucking minds. Do you have any fucking idea what living on eight dollars an hour is like, or maybe four- hundred dollars a month after getting a roof on your head, not including heat, gas, food, however you might try to keep your children in nondonated clothing, scraping together some kind of child care, any and all medical expenses, any trying to maintain the minimum in assets and objects just required to keep a lousy job?

    For that matter, anyone tried to keep any job these days without a cell phone? And the ones who get 40 hours a week without needing multiple jobs are *lucky*

    And your answer is when we stop "subsidizing the dependency" of the working poor, they can all get off cable TV and cover their food budgets?

    Or maybe the market can move them back into dormitories. Oh wait, the market for cheap housing is completely fucking broken and local concerned parents make sure it never gets started in the first place.

    Don't worry, I'm sure the invisible hand will free them from the dependency of having slightly more disposable income to avoid get evicted with, you gaping assholes.

  • ||

    You apparently have enough geld for some booze.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    I make nine bucks an hour, you fucking moron... AND, absolutely *no* handouts, do I take.

    This is where you spew some more of your usual bullshit, M. Type away.

  • 9 Dollah Hollah!||

    Only a fucking moron settles for $9/hour. What doing, KOCHsucking?

  • Mr. FIFY||

    And here we go with another liberal tactic: Deride people for not making much money.

    The same liberals who bitch if you make too MUCH money.

    There's just no satisfying liberals.

  • The Liberal Mindset on Income||

    If you're not a Team Blue Player, and you don't make much money... fuck you.

    If you're not a Team Blue Player, and you make a lot of money... fuck you.

  • Wealth Envy Enthusiast||

    Anyone with disposable income is a filthy capitalist pig, and should be raped by horses for their unspeakable crimes.

  • The Liberal Mindset on Income||

    I couldn't have put it better myself.

  • Veritas||

    S1. So if we gave you $10,000 worth of food stamps a month. Would you be happy?
    What if to do this we had to devalue the $ so far that a gallon of milk cost $1,000. Would you still be happy?

    S2. What about if we payed you $20/h as a min. wage would you be happy? What we had to place taxes everyone so high that your employer was also paying an extra $10/h per your $20/h ($30/h) and you took home $4/h. would this make you happy?

    S3. What if we made sure the employers provided living accommodations, full health care, pension plans to keep your retirement near working levels, would this make you happy? What if we to do that would make what you see as $9/h wage really cost your employer $25/h to employ you would you be happy?

    I hope this exhibits the misunderstanding and inaccuracies you have of the current problems with wages, and affordability. The problem is not how much your getting paid (it never is) its what your are worth in production vs what you can buy with the value of that production. Efforts to maximize this create more wealth for you, your employer, and society. Efforts or policies that diminish this reduce the wealth, goods you can purchase, and your value as an employee.
    Its really far more simple then giant economic models its simple math. The only way that the government can do the above things and you not lose is if they spend that money in the manner and as effective as each individual would (not possible) and it cost them nothing to do so (ie they take in $100 they provide you with $100 in benefits) also not possible. It simple math.

  • anon||

    ou people, starting with Rev. Blue Moon and moving onward, are absolutely out of your fucking minds. Do you have any fucking idea what living on eight dollars an hour is like, or maybe four- hundred dollars a month after getting a roof on your head, not including heat, gas, food, however you might try to keep your children in nondonated clothing, scraping together some kind of child care, any and all medical expenses, any trying to maintain the minimum in assets and objects just required to keep a lousy job?

    Yes. When I was 16.

    Know what I did?

    I found a better job.

    I guess I'm just smart like that.

  • Sevo||

    "Don't worry, I'm sure the invisible hand will free them from the dependency of having slightly more disposable income to avoid get evicted with, you gaping assholes."

    Yes, you raging asshole, that's exactly what would happen.

  • ||

    So who's is trying to kill off food stamps? Go back to school and get a diploma looser.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    He posted that first wall of blithering text in the FDR/New Deal thread, and God knows where else.

    He probably has it tattooed on his chest, in reverse, so he can read it every morning while he strokes his cock to the latest Paul Krugman column.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    ...and he makes even *less* sense in the second wall of blithering text.

    He's been trained well, that's for true. When the day comes, and he and his ilk start the big-time, nationwide rioting and pillaging "in the name of the poor", he'll likely slip in some blood and impale himself on his own implement of destruction.

    Fuck, that's a sweet scenario.

  • anon||

    So who's is trying to kill off food stamps?

    me.

  • ||

    I can't agree with you on one point (at least). I have to state that government cheddar cheese is not third-tier. Just a little too much fat in it.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: M,

    Honestly, to imitate the way the free-market crowd talks about liberals for a minute[...]


    Let's rather use arguments, like sound ones, for a change, M.

    Killing off food stamps to "free" working poor people from "dependency" is a lot like Joseph Stalin's forced collectivization / confiscation of kulak small farms


    It's not a good analogy, M. Nobody is forced to do anything when removing the foodstamps, except a million other things besides being on the dole. Not so with forced collectivization.

    Goverment food stamps are "dependency" like your dad paying for your college education is "dependency"


    I am not surprised that YOU would find no issue in calling people "children" and government "father."

    Stalin was also called "father." Just sayin'.

  • Ayn Rand is your Father||

    She had hairy nipples too. Just sayin'

  • Tony||

    I'm surprised I haven't posted in this thread yet.

  • M||

    I would SOOO have sex with you right now.

  • shrike||

    I've got some Astroglide...

  • Max||

    ARFARFARFARFARFARFARFARF!!!!

  • Ghost ||

    Mitt Romney seems to changed a lot in the last few hours http://images.memegenerator.ne.....053509.jpg

  • ||

    Wait a minute and he will do it again...

  • ||

    "It’s tempting to dismiss this as mere semantics."

    I guess when Ayn Rand wrote Capitalism : the Unknown Ideal, she didn't get the memo that "capitalism" is an anti-concept.

    One could plausibly argue that equating concepts like "capitalism" and "zaxelbax" is itself an exercise in anti-conceptual package-dealing, but that's for another post.

    For now, consider that, while you have posted a definition of "zaxelbax," you have not posted one for "capitalism" and telling us what the "undertones" were in the 1800's versus 1956 doesn't really cut it.

    I mean, we are trying to communicate, aren't we?

    If you define capitalism as "favors for the free market," great: it's bad. If you define it as "a social system in which all property is private," as Ayn Rand did, it's good.

    But this is a simple matter of disagreement over definitions, not some torn-blouse-inducing stupidity of the package-deal-susceptible, stupid American.

    One of Ayn Rand's points about the package-deal was that it often assumed a term to have been defined without an actual definition in evidence, then expressing frustration with people who just didn't get it.

    In short: your issue with the words don't even rise to the level of "just semantics."

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Orpheus,

    If you define capitalism as "favors for the free market," great: it's bad. If you define it as "a social system in which all property is private," as Ayn Rand did, it's good.


    What happens if it's really neither? You can have capitalism even where not all property is private, and capitalism does not mean "favors for the free market" as the free market is not a person for whom you can do favors.

  • anon||

    I seriously don't understand why people go to fucking Ayn Rand for the definition of capitalism.

    "... we must first decide what the meaning of the term 'capitalism' really is. Unfortunately, the term 'capitalism' was coined by its greatest and most famous enemy, Karl Marx. We really can't rely upon him for correct and subtle usage. And, in fact, what Marx and later writers have done is to lump together two extremely different and even contradictory concepts and actions under the same portmanteau term. These two contradictory concepts are what I would call 'free-market capitalism' on the one hand, and 'state capitalism' on the other. The difference between free-market capitalism and state capitalism is precisely the difference between, on the one hand, peaceful, voluntary exchange, and on the other, violent expropriation." - Murray Rothbard

    "The possibility of co-ordination through voluntary co-operation rests on the elementary - yet frequently denied - proposition that both parties to an economic transaction benefit from it, provided the transaction is bi-laterally voluntary and informed. Exchange can therefore bring about co-ordination without coercion. A working model of a society organized through voluntary exchange is a free private enterprise exchange economy - what we have been calling competitive capitalism." - Milton Friedman

    Keep in mind, all of these systems require the state provide security for the natural right of property.

  • Statism is Natural? LOLOL!||

    Heard it from an anon Libertard. Really.

  • anon||

    Dear Statism,

    I don't understand your incomplete sentence quoted here:
    "Heard it from an anon Libertard. Really."

    Would you please elaborate?

  • Mr. FIFY||

    You're asking Jason Godesky to elaborate?

  • anon||

    I don't know why, but it drives him back into gambol-land every time. It's quite funny.

  • Tony||

    Uh huh. There's a natural right to subsidized healthcare in addition to subsidized security. Because I say so. On what grounds do you disagree?

    Your entire scheme is justified by appeal to magic bullshit.

  • anon||

    Subsidies and services are different. Try again.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Not sure this isn't a spoof, though Tony is pretty fucking arrogant.

  • ||

    You were trying to say that we "EQUIVOCATE" when discussing economics, and specifically the term capitalism.

    What we don't have a good paradigm to evaluate these markets. I'd suggest that "libertarians" confuse themselves by constantly arguing between the "free market" and "statism" You've created a false dichotomy.

    There are 3 markets, not a free market. The free market is defined by a variety of alternatives and competitors. Restaurants, landscapers, cleaners, are typical examples. Not only do they compete, they is great elasticity in these markets, as one can DIY or enter the market. This flexibility creates a market where the customer is always right. (as to the "corporate" or "statist" argument, gov't needn't regulate these markets at all. It doesn't matter if corporations, YUM, McD, are two big-uns, but competition keeps them on their toes.

    Next, we have a professional market. Here fiduciary duty governs behavior. (look up "fiduciary law and duties") again gov't should stay out of this market, that means no tort reforms, no hindrance on our right to sue. These case law on these matters is far older, wiser and fairer than anything our political actors can craft. But, in a market where we're buying expertise and advice, what sense does it make to say, "the customer is always right." Bank lending, loans, financial advice are all "professional relationships. Yet, gov't has preferred to "regulate" these markets, usually with the goal of indemnifying the regulated; and resulting in regulatory capture, or corruption. GS's "shitty deal" would be an easy case under fiduciary law, as it is, they are indemnified and their sins hidden.

    Finally, we have the utility/monopoly market. This market is inelastic, usually essential for human/modern life and by necessity only one supply source, or provider. These range from roads, water, sewage, drainage services, to electricity, telephony, cable (though these are becoming truly competitive and alternatives are developing) For example, electric deregulation has been a disaster everywhere it's been tried. The author gets into a chicken and egg problem, as do libertarians when we blame gov't or corporations for mercantilism, fascism, corporatism, whatever you want to call it, but it's a two way street. But, consider these markets. Regulated electricity has proven more efficient, wholly socialized water and sewage treatment is the standard across the country. Can anyone report much difference between their water utility and their electric or cable? Frankly, the customer service in my experience is that the wholly socialized firms are better run. (the water company nearly beat me home, while I had to wait weeks for phone, elec. and cable; despite them chasing the almighty profit motive) So, what you fumble to understand and describe, is what we call utilities. They are a special market where the customer MUST be protected as they have no ability to boycott, or find another provider. The firms are disadvantaged as well, as they don't have the right to refuse service either--a right I've certainly relished, as Mitt, and Donald too enjoy firing people.

    Finally, there a special hybrid market, I call it a professional utility. I've only thought of two cases, banking and major hospitals. In both we have a professional relationship, but we've also divorced the client from the payer, and that can cloud the fiduciary model. Whether it be insurance companies, the gov't, or heirs, the patient isn't likely in full control of his part of the doctor/patient relationship. And in banking, the potential for any party to bankrupt, the gov't insurance/guarantees does the same for this market. These are likely always problematic markets. They may as well be wholly socialized (as we see in some countries) or they may be radically regulated, or treated as free--we saw/are seeing the effects of that today.

    Hayek supported national healthcare, and I do too. We've seen that this is not a free market. Every other country on Earth has socialized healthcare, and they get similar results 50% the cost per citizen.

    We had regulated banks, (and here I'm talking about commercial (retail) banking; under Glass-Stegal and removed those protections in 2000. Since, we made the gov't the guarantor of their loans, and bets, by allowing them to merge their financial functions with their regular services. Today, finance has taken up 40% of the economy. Healthcare consumes over 20%. So, these two most complex markets have come to consume 60% of the market dollar.

    All the utility market, and the healthcare and financial markets at once fuels and taxes the economy. The more efficiently these operate, the better for the economy.

    As to the problem of corporate power you need to focus on the managers. John Bogle has been the most venerable and consistent man making this critique. Far higher marginal taxes would help reduce their power and influence, and drive capital into deductible avenues, such as employee benefits, R%D, hiring, new equipment, expansion, investment and the like. High taxes allow them to liquidate the firm at low cost, high taxes encourage them to invest in the firm. The only low taxes help is the executive management. Further, it is stupid to say that firms won't pay a premium for access to our consumer markets. They'd do whatever it takes, but, we ask, and get nothing.

  • so, basically...||

    ...you're saying tax hikes solve every problem.

  • anon||

    I read halfway through your bullshit only to find you don't know what you're talking about.

    Here's the proof:
    Finally, we have the utility/monopoly market.

    Monopolies can only exist through government intervention in a market. Even so, such existence is usually short lived.

    That is all.

  • De Beers Corporation||

    Yup. What you say is right on, my brother!

  • anon||

    Heh, I like this:
    Healthcare consumes over 20%. So, these two most complex markets have come to consume 60% of the market dollar.

    You do understand that for something to be consumed, there has to be someone else producing it, right?

    Consumption cannot be had without production.

  • Sevo||

    "Frankly, the customer service in my experience is that the wholly socialized firms are better run."

    Frankly, you're a lying sack of shit, or lucky.

  • anon||

    It's just a TEAM BLUE troll.

  • Tony||

    The TEAM BLUE trolls are so far much more interesting than the libertarian natives... whose idea of debate seems to max out and puerile name calling.

  • anon||

    Only with you, Tony.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    At least he's admitting they're Team Blue trolls, though he forgot to include himself.

    Notice he never calls himself or his fellow travelers, on the name-calling.

  • Sevo||

    Tony|2.4.12 @ 1:07PM|#
    "...whose idea of debate seems to max out and puerile name calling."

    Shithead, if you ever presented an honest argument, you might be worth something other than puerile name-calling, shithead.

  • El Duderino||

    Government is the embodyment of envy and greed. Those who cannot compete in a truely free market petition government to correct what they percieve to be an imbalance in the system and government then seeks compensation for services provided.

    This would all be very free market if it werent for the fact that government has the authority to use force to achieve its ends.

    The problem with government having the authority to use force, aside from the use of force itself, is that the authority is assumed. I was born in this country and nobody eber asked me if I was okay with government having authority to use force. Oh sure, when I turned 18, they made a big fucking deal about being able to vote and encouraged me to vote, but there is a difference between voting and being able to choose.

    Voting is an activity designed to allow me to acknowledge which things I would prefer to have the state force on others. When you go in to the voting booth, you are going into a sadistic boutique in which you are given a menu of things you can have the government, wearing a full gimp suit, do to others for reasons you inclined to believe are important because they are making such a big goddamn deal about it. It is not a voluntary thing to submit to state use of force even if the majority of your neighbors thinks its a good idea. It is organized witch hunting, legitimized by a voting process that only mimics free choice.

    An individual, in a truely free society may choose to harm another individual. If someone does harm to you, you may do harm back to protect yourself, or others may step in to help you. The use of force never disappears, it just exists on a smaller scale. This example characterizes how self preservation is a natural right. In this situation, your will to survive and avoid harm is all that is needed to declare this a natural right. Simmilarly, your social contracts may be enforced locally. If I promise to pay you ten dollars for an hours work on my farm and I dont pay you, you can step in and take it, or others can step in and take it on your behalf. This is a normal extension of ones will to survive, it is a recognition that you do not have all of the resources you need to survive, so you contract with others who do, it is a part of our basic human sociability. So your body, resources and the ability to contract with others to obtain resources are all that is needed to survive and therefore the only things that are natural rights. In a free society, the use of force would be justifiable in protecting individuals from those who would use force to deny these natural rights.

    Individuals protecting other individuals life, property and contracts will inevitably group together for common cause, this is not government, this is human nature. This group of people only become government when supporting their cause becomes manditory for all citezens. The mandate comes in the form of taxes and now the organization, is more like a mafia thug who demands compensation in advance even if services are never rendered. This is the perversion of the natural right of self preservation and it is allowed to exist through fear and intimidation. The ince great group of protectors now may use their might to collect compensation.

    If compensation should be made to individuals who protect others, then it should be paid by the guilty party, not the innocent bystanders. The guilty should be forced into labor until their debt is paid off. Their debt to the victim comes first and their debt to those who apprehended him next. Free individuals may choose to abuse this system to gain benefit or punish their rivals, but the system is too small and the avenues for abuse too narrow for it to be abused on a large enough scale to be overwhelming to society as the current systems, which are ritually abused to the point of infecting the fabric of our society and economy.

    So a free society, may have police, judges and labor prisons for the sake of protecting life, property and contracts. A free society will cease to be free as soon as it gives anybody the power to make up new laws outside of the three natural laws. The corrupting power of legislative authority is absolute and any attempt to limit it will be subject to semantics and ever shifting whims and worries of society.

  • Tony||

    State violence is bad... so the only thing the state should do is commit violence against criminals.

    You were born into a state without the ability to choose... yeah oh well, people happen to be born naked and ignorant and can't choose anything. When you grew up you were perfectly free to find some other society to live in. If you can't find the minimalist state utopia you want, maybe that's because all such societies were overrun by stronger systems with bigger armies. You don't get to bitch that your perfect society doesn't exist. It's a finite planet and you are not that special.

    Almost every square mile of habitable land on the planet has been taken over by states--and that is an unnatural emergence? Anything that happens universally among humans, perhaps as a result of a darwinian process (the state seems to be a successful model), cannot be described as unnatural.

    Which section of the earth's crust do you suppose you are entitled to have absolute domain over, and who gave you that entitlement? You were born in a place with an existing system of mutual protection, and every time you use a road or are protected from assault by the threat of police force, or buy a product that was made by a person with a public education, you are sapping from society and there's nothing you can do about it. You can choose to go elsewhere but you can't choose to freeload. Being asked to pay for the services that you receive is not unfair, it's the only practical way to have a society into which new people are born, and in which anyone would possibly want to live.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    People who commit crime - premeditated crime - have no excuse.

    And yet, here you are, trying to give them an excuse.

    By the way, Tony... you are not special.

  • El Duderino||

    "The state" is not "unnatural" anymore than murder is "unnatural" they both emerge from the complexities of human behavior and social connection. You seem to think that because "the state" emerges naturally from human behavior that it is a good thing. Well, just because it is "natural" doesnt make it good.

    The whole goddamn point of my post was that things like violence, retribution and groups that seek to protect those who cannot protect themselves are emerge naturally from society and serve an appropriate puropse, but these things can be corrupted and abused resulting in a use of violence that is contrary to its original purpose, which was to preserve the life and livelyhood of the individual, from the violence of other individuals.

    The surface of the earths crust that I am entitled to is the one I have aquired by compensating the previous owner. All land that is owned privately can be sold or given away by its owner. All land that is not privately owned (or under government control) may be claimed. When people set out to explore the world, they claimed property. The property they claimed was theirs because they took the risk to go out and find it. Some people stole land and justice was not served, but the time for justice has come and gone, if my property was stolen from the Indians, then it would have been those who stole it that should have been punished, but nobody could have "stolen" Indian land because the indians never claimed to own the land, in fact, they quite proudly believed that nobody could own the land and guess what, sombody prooved them wrong. My point here is that land ownership has evolved with society. We first moved out to explore and claim it from our small corners of the world. Once claimed, we began selling it. History cannot be undone as far as those who "stole it" or grabbed it through acts of war, but you can learn from it so as not to allow that sort of thing from happening again.

    Land ownership provides a means to aquire resources one needs for survival. The most obvious resource is food and for a long time, farming was the primary reason for owning land. Other resources are important as well, like minerals. Now land is used for establishing a home, a place where one keeps their food and valuable resources, which they aquired by working to provide goods and services that others needed or wanted. In exchange for goods and services that I have provided, I receive money, which I use to obtain food and shelter and other things that maybe I believe will enhance my overall happiness or make me more capable of serving others more effectively.

    You seem to think that land ownership is impossible because it is finite. Following this logic, what gives anyone the right to occupy any piece of land? What if I wanted to build a shelter on a piece of land, what makes me more entitled to it than you? Well, thousands of years ago, the fact that I found it first would have been enough. Try this for a thought experiment. You are in a forest gathering berries and there are only two bushes with edible berries anywhere within your immediate area. Each bush has enough to feed one family for a week, but there are three familys out searching for berries. You find one of the bushes first and begin picking, then some other family begins picking the second bush. Then I come along and see that both bushes are being picked already, so I just start picking from the same bush you are picking from, but you have already picked most of the berries. What am I to do? Do I try to take some of your berries, after all, what right do you have to them, or do I go off and find other berries, which are probably very far away? How about this, I promise to give you something you need, say some furs for the winter, in exchange for half your berries. Well, since the berries are so rare, you are unwilling to trade, so I go off and look for another bush in an unexplored area. I have to cross a wide river, climb down a steep hill and risk getting lost or attacked by wild animals, but my family needs food. After two days of wandering, I come upon a field full of wild berries. I return to the village and tell my family that we need to move to this field or we will starve to death. They come along and we blaze a trail to this wonderland of berries. Along the way, we clear a path, build a bridge over the river and find a safer way down the hill. A week later, when your berries have run out, you find out about my discovery and walk along the trail my family cleared and use the bridge we built until you get to the field I discovered after days of wandering around in the woods and who do you think should have the benefits of the land that I found? Do you not believe that I should be able to keep the fruits (literally) of my labor? Or do you think you can just come along and take advantage of the work that I have done to clear the way? What right do I have to claim the land? I fucking risked my life and my family to find it, therefore I get first say in who gets to use it.

    You point out that I am benefiting from the work of people who have had a public education and from public roads. Yes, fine, but these are things that could have been done privately as well. Just because roads and public education exist and I might get something from them doesnt justify the use of force required for the government to pay for all of these things. I only use a small fraction of the public roads and yet, when I buy gasoline, I am paying for all of them. Simmilarly, I am under no obligation to pay for someone elses education. There are other ways for people to learn and public school is probably the least effective for any number of reasons having to do with the inefficiency of the system and the lack of incentives to evolve the system. Since the invention of the printing press, information, the cornerstone of any education, has become more and more available and less and less expensive as a result. Today, the price of information is approaching zero, what with the proliferation of modern information technology, yet public schools demand more and more money, as do private colleges. The problem is not the cost of the information, it is rent seeking. Because money can be obtained from the government just by asking for it, these schools will continue to ask for it and the government will find some new way of extracting it from us.

  • Tony||

    Your story about how land ownership is legitimized is fine, but it's 100% artificial, based on post hoc ethical justifications that absolutely not universal or necessitated by reason, and property ownership is 100% a creation of the state. An entitlement. It comes with police protection and courts, and military protection above that. And it's not a free-for-all. You can't commit crimes on your own property, and so you aren't sovereign. The liberties that come with property ownership owe themselves entirely to the state. When you want to assert sovereignty over the state, feel free to pay for your own army.

    At what age do you think people should be able to pick and choose which aspects of civilization they are going to benefit from and pay for? How big a police force do you want to build in order to enforce fairness in such a system? Gotta make sure nobody's driving on a road he didn't pay for...

    On top of all the physical goodies you get from the state to even say you own anything at all, like the police force, you have to educate that police force. Since we're well into modernity, we've also found it useful to educate the entire population, and it is ludicrous to claim that universal education would be available without state subsidy. Where was it before? Public education is fundamental to a useful form of capitalism. Without it, money, power, and privilege all stay in the hands of a few aristocrats and society stagnates.

    So your obligation comes from the fact that you began befitting from the existence of the state and all its services the day you were shat into the world, your parents acting on your behalf did not renounce your citizenship, and you, I am almost certain, never renounced it once you were grown up. You don't get to benefit from society, including ambient benefits like education, peace, and law and order, and not pay for them just because you think it's ethically wrong to have these benefits in the first place. Want to change it, as I said, get your own army. You can't use mine.

  • Sevo||

    Tony|2.4.12 @ 9:04PM|#
    "....property ownership is 100% a creation of the state. An entitlement."

    No shithead. Property existed long before any state, shithead. Is that clear, shithead?
    -------------
    "It comes with police protection and courts, and military protection above that."
    No, shithead. Both of those examples came about as a result of property ownership, shithead.
    Shithead, how stupid are you, shithead?

  • Sevo||

    "The liberties that come with property ownership owe themselves entirely to the state."
    Shithead, what "liberties"?

  • Sevo||

    "On top of all the physical goodies you get from the state to even say you own anything at all, like the police force, you have to educate that police force. Since we're well into modernity, we've also found it useful to educate the entire population, and it is ludicrous to claim that universal education would be available without state subsidy."

    Shithead, one of your worst ever non-sequiturs.
    Since those who protect a society from thugs need 'education', therefore public education is a given.
    Stupid doesn't begin to define that, shithead.

  • Sevo||

    "Public education is fundamental to a useful form of capitalism. Without it, money, power, and privilege all stay in the hands of a few aristocrats and society stagnates."
    Shithead non-sequitur almost as stupid as above.
    Shithead, you're approaching a gold this evening.

  • Sevo||

    "get your own army. You can't use mine."
    Yes, shithead, using others' money to hire thugs to enforce your infantile fantasies is exactly what you would love to do.
    Sleazy beyond measure......

  • El Duderino||

    Post-hoc justification huh. You cant run around screaming about "fairness" and then as soon as someone actually earns something through their own hard work scram that it is unfair. You may think I am justifying things, but really, all I am saying is that, if you work to aquire something, be it berries, or land, then it is yours. My "fictional" berry example was written with purpose. Please tell me, do I have any right to take the berries that you picked out of your fucking basket? If not, then what makes you think you have the right to take the land that I found or purchased? This isnt a contrivance that I made up, it is the way we are. We, as humans are driven to survive, it is the fundamental core of our being. Without this drive to survive, WE WOULD CEASE TO EXIST. This is why we work to obtain the resources we need, this is why we communicate with each other and make contracts, this is why we protect what resources we have aquired. It is not fiction, it is human.

    We dont really seem to have a choice in what aspects of civilization we get to "benefit" from because as you stated so frighteningly clear, the goddamn armies of the world have taken control. And by armies, I mean police. The police, mean well enough, but often fail to realize that they are being used to impose the will of some onto all. To be honest, if I had a choice, I would freely choose to pay for some of the "benefits" and "goodies," but I do not seem to have that choice, because if I dont pay for all of them, the police come and put me in jail.

    As far as education is concerned, why is it you believe that only the government can educate people? What magical power do they hold that instills them with this ability while others are simply incapable of this task? If people think it is important to educate their children, then they should make it their financial priority to educate them, not MY financial obligation. The are schools in third world countries that provide a better education than the public schools in this first world country, and many of them are PRIVATE and they educate entire villages of very very very poor kids, because their parents make it a big fucking deal to get educated and so are willing to pay what little they can afford to educate their children. Meanwhile, in our state run education system, parents use the public school system as a fucking day care program with free lunch. As far as educating cops is concerned, how fucking hard can it be that only the government can do it. Thats like saying that only NASA can properly teach algebra. Is the government the sole source of information? Information exists outside of government and outside of society. Information comes from observation and information is transmitted through communication, this doesnt seem to be something that only the government can do.

    You are right to say that an education is important to ensuring that you are not left out of the economy, but your assertion that education is the key to preventing money, power and priveledge from being controlled by a few aristocrates is demonsterably false. Government force allows a few people to obtain money, power and influence by minimizing, or eliminating competition. This is why the bailouts were bad policy. Bailouts given to banks, allowed these banks to continue operating rather than allowing smaller banks to pick up their market share if and when they go under, so not only did the bailouts result in a transfer of wealth through government force (taxation) it also served to stifel the most critical aspect of the free market, competition. This was government force at its finest.

    I dont see how renouncing citezenship could possibly make me more free. If I exist on this planet, I am somehow bound by the arbitrary laws of the country I am in and why the hell should I have to move anywhere. I was born here, the very fact that your solution to my lack of choice is to simehow opt out of this situation is completely ridiculous because as you said, the armies of the world have taken over. If I were truely free, I should have the choice to opt into a state, not be forced to find some nearly impossible way to opt out of it.

    And Tony, I domt want or need to use your goddamn army, because I have no need to impose myself on everybody else. All I want in life is to be left alone so that I can make choices for myself. If you want to participate in some kind of commune society, you are free to join a commune, you cease to be free to join as soon ass shitdicks like you start using their army to make you join.

  • Tony||

    Please tell me, do I have any right to take the berries that you picked out of your fucking basket?

    I don't know. Do you have a bigger gun than me? If you do, it would seem you have the "right." Thankfully I have the biggest gun of all--government enforcement. Can't you see that these ethics don't mean anything without enforcement? You can't run a peaceful society on the honor system. Property only exists because the state is there to legitimize your claim to it.

    why is it you believe that only the government can educate people?,

    A couple reasons. Government is the only thing that can provide a universal and equitable service. Otherwise you have the children of rich parents getting educated and the children of poor parents not being educated and stuck in a cycle of poverty. There is absolutely nothing in a free market to prevent that. Secondly, recent attempts at for-profit education have been a giant scandalous disaster.

    If I were truely free, I should have the choice to opt into a state, not be forced to find some nearly impossible way to opt out of it.

    To opt out of the state, you would have to assert sovereignty over some part of land. The only way to do that is to raise an army and defeat the one that already secures that land. You are seeking the ultimate handout--you, among 7 billion people, deserve to maximum liberty, just because you say so. But most people have found pooling resources to provide a measure of security to be one of the more useful human endeavors. I'm sorry you can't escape the consequences of that, but we can't dismantle the entire country every time a new person is born on the chance that he doesn't like what it has to offer and wants to set off on his own. You're born into a civilization, you pay for it. If you don't like it, you use speech to attempt to change it democratically, or you leave. I certainly don't like every single policy I live under--but that doesn't mean they aren't legitimate, or that I am entitled to exactly the society I want. I know I have to share the world with lots of other people, and the best we can do is figure out what interests we have in common and try to make the best of it. Living in 21st century America is one of the freest ways to live in the history of the human species. You are free to complain about anything, but complaining that you're somehow being treated unfairly because you have to check in with your fellow citizens before you get to arrange society exactly how you want it seems like an awfully entitled attitude.

  • El Duderino||

    Did you, or did you not read my post. The whole fucking point of my post, once again, is that the appropriate role of government is to protect private property, human life and enforce contracts. So that pretty much should settle your entire first paragraph.

    As far as education is concerned, how is it "equitable" if I pay for sombody elses kids education in addition to my own? The whole reason why our education system sucks is because the schools do not have any incentive to respond to the needs of the kids and their parents. A free education IS NOT A GUARINTEE IN LIFE and it is not a "right". Teachers have to get paid, schools have to be built, supplys have to be procured, are you suggesting that the people who provide these thing should do it for free? We already tried that type of labor in this country, lets not try it again. Getting an education need not entail going to school. I learned more about math from my father than I did in school, because my father taught me what he knew. That is how people learn and it need not cost a fortune to learn it. You worry about only the rich being able to afford school because you seem to assume that economics has some kind of strange reverse logic to it. Public schools, being free, create an imbalance in the public education market. Right now, the condition is that you can either pay something or you can pay nothing and this makes the demand for private (pay) education very small and therefore more expensive. If the public schools did not exist, private schools would compete for every child looking to get an education and the price would go down because the largest markets are in the low and middle classes, not the upper class, thats why there ae a million mcdonalds on every corner and not a whole hell of a lot of Wolfgang Puck restaurants. Those who cannot afford even the most modestly priced schools, could still seek out assistance in their community. Hell most private schools today have special programs for poor kids. I went to a catholic high school and there were kids there who were dirt poor, but yet, the school helped them as did the church. A few of the kids actually worked in the cafeteria and the library, you can scoff at that, but people respected them and they had a year or so more work experience on their resumes more than everyone else when they graduated. You suggest that private schools have been failures, and some may have failed, but on the whole, most do a better job than the public schools, though its not hard to improve from abysmal.

    Regarding your final paragraph, I think you perhaps need to just smoke some pot and relax a bit okay. First of all, how is wanting maximum liberty the ultimate handout? If anything, this is the opposite of a handout. I want to be left alone. I want to be left to take my own risks and if I fail, I fully expect to bear the burden of failure on my own and take responsibility for my actions. If I succeed, would be perfectly free to say fuck everyone and keep it all to myself, but really, I know that it is in my long term self interest to use my success to help those around me. I know that working together as a community is important and an effective way to live, BUT I DONT WANT TO FORCE EVERYONE TO DO IT. In a maximum liberty state, you are free to seek out others who believe in communal work and all that and you can get together and create your own little commune and as long as it remains voluntary, there is no issue. I suspect though that you aleady know that this sort of thing needs to be forced by the government, otherwise you will have people abbusing the communes hardest workers while they slack off and do nothing. Ill let you ponder the ethics of that situation on your own, but needless to say, you will be forcing people to work so that the fruits of their labor can then be divided up... Based on your penchant for military force controlling everything, that thought experiment might give you a hardon so I reccomend thinking someplace private. In a maximum liberty state, you can still have people pooling resources, local communities and families do this sort of thing all the time without being forced to do it by the government. Churches create soup kitchens for the poor, goodwill collects clothing and jackets for the poor, the shriners do expensive operations for poor children and most of the time, all they ever ask for in return is a thank you letter. Nobody forces these organizations to do what they do, they do it because they know helping their community means a more prosperous community. In fact, if government didnt give out food stamps, people would be more inclined to help the poor locally than they are now. Right now, the assumption is that the government is going to do all of the work, but the government, especially the federal government is inefficient mostly because it is too far removed from the situation and cannot easily distinguish between real need and free riders. In a maximum liberty state, you wouldnt have to "dismantle" the entire country every time someone is born, because they are not born into anything of consequence. They would not be born into a society that demands they get a social security number and then takes their money without ever asking for all sorts of reasons they had nothing to do with and would not have otherwise wanted. They are not born into a world that makes value judgements about the types of food you eat by banning them, or passes judgement on what you can or cannot smoke, or who you can or cannot have consentual sex with, or demands that you buy health insurance against your will and demands that you pay for the mistakes of others rather than letting them pay for their own mistakes (bailouts). These things arise because we have given a very small group of people the authority to make law and enforce it with violence. This authority is absolutely corrupting, it is far too easy for legislators to impose the will of a few on everybody. In a maximum liberty society, you cannot impose your will on anyone else but yourself. You choose how you wish to lead your life and what you eat, who you fuck and what you smoke. You pay for your own mistakes and you benefit from your own success. And if you want to share everything you have with everybody, that is also for you to decide. Yes, in order to ensure that nobody is able to impose their will on another individual without their consent, you would need to use some force, but there is far less violence involved in protecting three natural laws (life, property and contracts) than there is in enforcing the never ending stream of laws that emerge from the passing whims of the legislators and the fleeting worries of the masses.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    "shat into this world"

    Fuck, Tony, if you hate life THAT much, just swallow a gun barrel.

    Or, even if you don't hate life that much. It would make us happier if you were dead, though.

  • Sevo||

    Shithead, here's a blatant example of your sleazy dishonesty:

    Tony|2.4.12 @ 1:02PM|#
    "State violence is bad... so the only thing the state should do is commit violence against criminals."
    -------------
    Compared with:

    "...When you grew up you were perfectly free to find some other society to live in. If you can't find the minimalist state utopia you want, maybe that's because all such societies were overrun by stronger systems with bigger armies."
    --------
    So government violence is just fine when it favors your infantile desire for a mommy.

  • El Duderino||

    It may be contradictory, but at least it is convenient. I believe in Tony's world, the motto governing the use of force is "go big or go home".

  • Sevo||

    Possibly, except that shithead would scream bloody murder if those who disagreed 'got big'.
    I'd say shithead's motto is simply 'I want free shit and *you* should pay for the thugs to take if for me'.

  • El Duderino||

    Well, Tony's last name is Soprano...

  • ||

    Pure babble. As evidenced of no alternative laid out.

  • ||

    Actually, "zaxlebax" is a very bad example of the anti-concept.

    The anti-concept does not introduce explicit, incongruous qualities with a brand new word, rather, it introduces a bogus *integrator* of these incongruous characteristics. The word itself signifies this integrator, so that it cannot be escaped.

    For example, "curvism" would be an anti-concept, if it attempted to integrate entities as fundamentally similar, based on their possession of a curve or curves.

    (Ayn Rand's most famous example of an anti-concept was "extremism," for the same reason.)

    Because no part of "zaxlebax" is a word signifying an existing idea, it insinuates nothing as an integrator (what is a zaxle? what is a bax?).

    Arguments made against capitalism from Ayn Rand's theories have enough tough sledding ahead. The least you can do is get the theories right.

  • Zaxelbax the Destroyer||

    I am tired of having My name smeared! Guards!!! SEIZE THEM!!!!!!

  • Barry the Jaunty Future King||

    Hey, Zaz', old son... can we talk in my office? Or can I at least subscribe to your newsletter?

  • RandomJerk||

    Isn't a corporatist, militarist state the basis of "fascism"? Few people seem to want to use that term, maybe it isn't perceived credibly. But if we are looking for terms to define the Republicrats in the upcoming election as a choice between the establishment and libertarianism, maybe Gary Johnson and Ron Paul should start using it.

  • ||

    "Few people seem to want to use that term..."

    Indeed. I was amused to see Richman practically bending over backwards to avoid using it. But huzzah for Reason, for saying in a picture (rathern and 1000 words), what is clearly obvious to anyone who thinks about it for even a little while. The picture of Mussolini should clue us in that "corporatism + militarism" is what our grandparents knew and properly labeled as "fascism."

  • ||

    "Rathern and" somehow got onto the screen, when what I thought I was typing was "rather than." Not sure how that happened. Overactive interactive spell-checker or creeping senility? You be the judge.

  • Watoosh||

    There are differences between the ways 30's Italian fascism and modern American corporatism present themselves. Fascism was (at the time) a modern movement that opposed all surrounding ideologies (communism, liberalism, anarchism and conservatism), whereas the American status quo is a result of a slow grinding process between conservatism (with free market sugarcoating) and paternalistic social democracy. Fascists were also more explicitly nationalistic, protectionistic and against labor unions than the US establishment.

    To me, calling the USA a fascist country is as silly as calling Sweden "socialist". There may be some ideological overlap between the thoughts of Mussolini and Obama, but they're still worlds apart in other respects.

  • Sevo||

    "To me, calling the USA a fascist country is as silly as calling Sweden "socialist"."

    How would Sweden *not* be socialist?

  • Mr. FIFY||

    "Worlds apart" =/= "not for a lack of effort on Barry's part".

  • Watoosh||

    Well, the means of production are mostly privately owned in Sweden, the labor markets are relatively free and there are fewer stupid regulations than in America. Since the 70's Sweden has had multiple conservative coalitions that have reduced the role of government. (Sweden has even gotten rid of the public school monopoly!) There's still a big safety net and high taxes, but those are generally true for social democracies, not for socialist countries where entrepreneurship is either impossible or a nightmare.

    Feel free to call Sweden or any other prosperous European country a statist, liberal, progressive, big-government nanny state, but socialist goes a step too far. The word loses all meaning when applied to something other than "means of production owned either by the state or by the workers".

  • Watoosh||

    (clarification: of course socialist countries generally have high taxes and lots of welfare as well, but those alone aren't enough to constitute socialism.)

  • Sevo||

    "those alone aren't enough to constitute socialism."
    Then tell us what does.

  • KW6||

    "Regardless of how the goals are achieved, if government sets them, that’s statism."

    By this absurd reasoning, when someone puts out a fire it's statism, if any government official said that it's a bad thing for houses to burn down.

  • J Robert Giles||

    "We the people" is so much more than a political statement. Please read and share the following article.

    http://jrobertgiles.blogspot.c.....isons.html

  • Fire and Brimstone||

    In the valley of the unconcerned,
    flee-ridden dogs lick their hinds
    1000 black birds fly through the sky
    casting long shadows over barn doors
    everything is cool
    everything is ok

  • Mouth Breathing Oregonian||

    Gimminey. Get a grip, fella. It's gonna be OK.

  • Cactus Flowers||

    Typical liberal. Telling other people what to think, feel; how to live.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Team Red is just as good at that, Cactus.

  • ||

    Caption contest! I'll start! (translated from the italian): "Round-a you fingers into an 'O' like this, around-a the zucchini!"

  • Captain of the Twilight Age||

    love is like a dying ember
    only memories remain
    through the ages
    I'll remember
    blue eyes cryin'
    through the rain

  • Schwabe||

    Enlightening read. I generally use "free market capitalism" when referring to the libertarian vision of a free market but I guess I will drop the word capitalism all together in favor of "freed market".

  • ||

    We do not have a government that favors big business. We have a government that favors its cronys. The government did not protect all investment banks, only favored investment banks. The government favors plaintiff lawyers that use our tort system to plunder companies and steal from the shareholders. The government favors unions. The gov't circumvented bankruptcy law and stiffed the secured creditors in the auto bailouts to favor the unions. The government favors itself, with average government pay 50% higher than the private sector. The government set up barriers to entry into all markets and the capital markets in particular. The government governs against the people and private sector organizations not connected to the ecosystem that enriches the bureaucrats and flavored liberal constituencies.

  • John Edwards||

    The tort system has done a lot of good in this country. Would you rather eat poisoned meat? Or be a passenger in a plane that doesn't fly? Or sport a condom that let's you down at a time you need it most?

    Tort system is a great, cheap, decentralized form of regulation. Would you rather we expand the faceless bureaucracy?

  • Sevo||

    "Tort system is a great, cheap, decentralized form of regulation."

    Hey, John, tell us about C-sections!

  • Gerry Spence||

    The tort system is one of the few manifestations of the Revolutionary spirit still alive in today's decaying Republic. The tort system permits a redress of personal wrongs inflicted by the powerful, untouchable class. In most countries the rich and powerful are free to rape and pillage as they please. They own the politicians and the courts. But in America we have justice served down by nine jurors from main street who can keep the powerful interests in check.

  • Willie "Giant Killer" Gary||

    Trial lawyers protect the rights of religious and racial minorities; the oppressed; the interests of small business; the intellectual property rights of inventors; the life and well-being of fatherless children, single mothers, overworked fathers. The essence of America can be found in the civil courtrooms across the fruited plain.

  • Joseph Jamail Jr.||

    The number of tort (personal injury) cases has been declining for years. According to the National Center for State Courts, tort cases accounted for just 4.4 percent of all civil cases filed in 2008, and declined by 25 percent between 1999 and 2008. Tort filings in state courts decreased by six percent between 2007 and 2008. The number of federal tort cases resolved in U.S. District Courts fell by 79 percent between 1985 and 2003. In 1985, 3,600 tort trials were decided by a judge or jury in U.S. District Courts. By 2003, that number had dropped to less than 800. The problem with America is not that the rights of the poor and oppressed have been overrepresented in the courtrooms across the country. Rather, just the opposite. Support democracy, hug a trial lawyer today.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    I'm afraid to hug people these days. You never know when someone might file a lawsuit over it.

  • the invisible hand touched me||

    where my bathing suit covers!

  • Mouth Breathing Oregonian||

    Jumping jebus, what's wrong with some of you here? Can't you at least feign a little decorum?

  • Richard Simmons's Long Pants||

    Get bent.

  • Circling Roadside Buzzard||

    Helicopter Ben has saved the economy for you and your grandchildren and your government is working overtime to keep you ungreatful swine safe from the ravaging of wall street pirates in the rutt, thieves and killers who'd make a Somali pirate blush.

  • Eddie Vetterer||

    So you Libs is now comparing wall street to blood-thirsty, raping goons in Somalia? Be a little more specific and maybe you'll find your ass in court for defamation.

  • Fire and Brimstone||

    It ain't defamation if it's true. The gangsters of wall street have milked the average American like a morning cow. Income inequality is at levels not seen since the last great depression. When Greece defaults, triggering an international banking crisis and stock market blood bath, we will know just how ugly things can get. The beginning of the end is near. Darkness on the edge of town. Soaking rain and blues moving in. Dogs barking. Moon shadows on the barn door. Leaves rustling. The pregnant darkness tells us the time is near.

  • Libertarian||

    "Income inequality is at levels not seen since the last great depression."

    You're just jealous!

    *eats own poo*

  • the bilover||

    Hey, folks. Was somebody looking for me?

  • Gerald Hosier||

    Tort reform means the frat boys on wall street will have absolute power to grunge fuck you in public.

  • John Edwards||

    And I'd have to find a real job rather than whining to a jury!

  • John Edwards||

    And getting really cool hair-styling!

  • John Corzine||

    Tee Hee.

  • Cactus Flowers||

    Because the Universe is one consciousness, all this apparent dissonance must merely be a natural cosmic function -- like gravity or the weak force.

  • J. Edgar Hoover||

    Hold me, brother...

  • Jake Street||

    http://www.jakestreet.com/state_capitalism.htm - The partnership between Big Business and Big Government.

  • Mister Tenenbaum||

    Sheldon Richman is awesome! Thank you Reason for including this article!

  • Nina||

    Interesting point to bring up the demographic of this generation's Internet users. With such a decentralized, free forum of information and flow of ideas, it is difficult for such a group to understand the seemingly inherent draw of the government towards large firms and industries. Saifedean Ammous and Edmund S. Phelps discussed this in further detail; an interesting take on this notion as well: http://beta.project-syndicate......orporatism

  • yorutomo||

    Voted Ireland's favourite painting: http://www.yorutomo-gaido.com/cialis

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