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What Libertarianism Isn't
Lew Rockwell.com ^ | December 22nd 2001 | Edward Feser

Posted on 12/22/2001 8:53:08 AM PST by rob777

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To: Roscoe
Words are cheap; Roscoe spouts nothing but cheap words.
151 posted on 12/22/2001 2:42:31 PM PST by tpaine
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To: Roscoe
Words are cheap; Roscoe spouts nothing but cheap words.
152 posted on 12/22/2001 2:44:03 PM PST by tpaine
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To: Jolly Rodgers
Try to focus on issues, rather than on the sound and fury, signifying nothing that you've written here.

And while you clearly lack a Y-chromosome, it would be best not to project your own deficiencies on your betters.

Of which, on every conceivable level, I am clearly one.

Peddle your pedantic, womanly twaddle as your mentality dictates you must, wishy-washy-wussy little one.

I'm off to find people with more than two I.Q. points to rub together, so I won't see any reply you post.

I trust that it will be your characteristic girly-girl lameness! You can produce nothing else. How sad for you!

153 posted on 12/22/2001 2:45:17 PM PST by Christian_Egalitarian
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To: Lchris
Of course, libertarianism can encompass everything from cultural hedonism to ultra-traditional conservatism to everything in between.

Hence, IMHO, a tremendous weakness in libertarian thought.

What is it? If it comprised of such a wide spectrum of thought, it is likened to the story of the two blind men examining an elephant from the opposite ends.

I am a cultural conservative. Yet, I am not one to tell others how to live their lives. Many take the pro-life position as trying to enforce women what to do with their bodies. My position is not so. I want Roe v. Wade overturned, knowing full well that this will not be the end of abortions being performed. It does belong on the state, not federal level.

To Leftists and many libertarians alike, my mentioning of my pro-life stance is taken as if I want to force my views on others. That's not the case, and any intellectual honesty can attest to it.

Now, again, just what is libertarianism? I have "Libertarianism" by David Boaz, and "What it Means to Be a Libertarian" by Charles Murray. Boaz does a nice job in defining it, yet Murray's interpretation is different.

How do you sell a point which can be defined in so many different ways? The non-initiation of force and laissez-faire economic stance of libertarianism is highly attractive. But is that all there is to it?

154 posted on 12/22/2001 2:47:49 PM PST by rdb3
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To: Jolly Rodgers

Christian_Egalitarian wrote: I asserted based upon conversations with self-identifying Libertarians. If you contend that the view they expressed is not representative of Libertarianism, so be it.

Some unnamed, self-proclaimed Libertarian told you. And, even though you can't find any supporting evidence in the plethora of Libertarian Party materials, you assert it as fact? Heck, I once had a christian tell me that you couldn't go to heaven unless you handled deadly snakes and spoke in tongues. Would that qualify as enough evidence to smear the entire breadth of the christian church? I think not. Furthermore, I call into question your ability to accurately represent what you claim to have been told.

Aside from your keen insights the other thing I most enjoy about reading your discussions is your bulldog tenacity to not let a person deceive the reader with false arguments.  As is the case in your discussion with Christian_Egalitarian I find it particularly disgusting when a person identifies the other person's error yet the one who made the error uses tail-chasing rationalizations in defense of their error. Then to top it off, when they realize they can't win, the brush it of  saying "whatever". Shows their true character is one of deceit rather than honesty.

The thing that strikes me is that a person always benefits by identifying and correcting their own errors. Conversely, to not acknowledge an error and correct it is self-abuse. Not to mention it causes a loss of trust, respect and credibility. Once again proving that often a person is their own worst enemy.

155 posted on 12/22/2001 3:31:53 PM PST by Zon
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To: Christian_Egalitarian
Try to focus on issues, rather than on the sound and fury, signifying nothing that you've written here. And while you clearly lack a Y-chromosome, it would be best not to project your own deficiencies on your betters. Of which, on every conceivable level, I am clearly one. Peddle your pedantic, womanly twaddle as your mentality dictates you must, wishy-washy-wussy little one. I'm off to find people with more than two I.Q. points to rub together, so I won't see any reply you post. I trust that it will be your characteristic girly-girl lameness! You can produce nothing else. How sad for you!

You just used a lot of words to effectively say that you lack the ability to communicate. In other words, you just gave me the verbose version of the typical cop-out you used before -- whatever. The funny thing is that after you confessed that your assertion was based on nothing more than hearsay, I opened the door to converse about the issue you brought up and you immediately defaulted into the pedantic ranting mode. Why did you bring it up if you didn't want to discuss it? Did you think it would be an effective cheap shot and then decided to retreat when you realized you missed the mark?

156 posted on 12/22/2001 3:47:29 PM PST by Jolly Rodgers
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To: Lchris
"Yet it fails to examine the other side of the issue --namely, that many conservatives, especially those grounded in religious principles, believe they are justified in forcing others to conform to their definition of morality."



This is true and shows a misunderstanding of the nature of morality. Philosophically, morality presupposes the reality of Free Will. An action can not be considered "moral" unless it is freely chosen, which is why we do not charaterize the behavior of animals as either moral or immoral. The whole notion of imposing morality via force is an oxymoran which will undermine precisely what it seeks to promote.
157 posted on 12/22/2001 3:47:41 PM PST by rob777
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To: Zon
Thanks. It was a classic case.
158 posted on 12/22/2001 3:48:45 PM PST by Jolly Rodgers
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To: Roscoe
Words are cheap; Libertarianism is nothing but words.

Chant that often enough and you may convince yourself.

159 posted on 12/22/2001 3:53:26 PM PST by Jolly Rodgers
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To: GovernmentShrinker
Sorry, but there's a big conflict between libertarian principles and people who want to enforce religiously-based "morality" on who people who don't share their religious beliefs, and to use the power of the state to do this via legal discrimination against the non-"traditionalists".

And not everyone who believes in morality is in that category.

And how do you suppose those "traditions" came to be traditional? Via the imposition of force by government authorities and by ecclesiastical authorities who had obtained government-like authority in theocratic societies. Nope, can't support that. If the social practices they advocate don't remain predominant without government coercion, then they weren't "traditional" in the first place, just vestiges of tyranny.

Nope. They've existed apart from coercion, and as the article makes clear, their decline is the result of government interference in society, which is to say, coercion.

160 posted on 12/22/2001 4:12:34 PM PST by A.J.Armitage
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To: Roscoe
Check the market share. 0.4% and falling.

Ignoring, of course, the obvious fact that a very large portion of people with libertarian views don't vote for the libertarian party, myself included.

161 posted on 12/22/2001 4:19:49 PM PST by A.J.Armitage
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To: f.Christian
Does or does not this article mean that folks will be able to keep their pot stashes legally? That's the important part of libertarianism to lots of these "libertarians" who post to FR.
162 posted on 12/22/2001 4:21:34 PM PST by gg188
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To: gg188
Does or does not this article mean that folks will be able to keep their pot stashes legally? That's the important part of libertarianism to lots of these "libertarians" who post to FR.

The government and complicit media have taken a trivial issue and blown it up to be Macys-Day-Parade-size floating boogieman. The Libertarian party if they were to have a float in the parade would be one of Albert Einstein, Thomas Edison or Henry Ford.

You support the trivial while ignoring the massive benefits that non-force free enterprise contributes to individuals, society and humanity.

163 posted on 12/22/2001 4:40:47 PM PST by Zon
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To: Mahone
It still comes down to the difference represented by two men, Edmund Burke vs. John Locke; between two revolutions the French and the American.

In a way you're right. The American Revolution was largely a libertarian event. The French Revolution was not. The differences are obvious.

What you seem to have in mind, though, is to say the American Revolution took after Burke, who, you claim, was anti-libertarian, while the French Revolution took after Locke. Of course, out in the real world the American Revolution took after Locke and the French Revolution took after Rousseau. Burke was a minority MP whose best work was ahead of him at the time of the American Revolution.

Men naturally rebel against the injustice of which they are victims. Thus, when plunder is organized by law for the profit of those who make the law, all the plundered classes try somehow to enter -- by peaceful or revolutionary means -- into the making of laws. According to their degree of enlightenment, these plundered classes may propose one of two entirely different purposes when they attempt to attain political power: Either they may wish to stop lawful plunder, or they may wish to share in it.

Woe to the nation when this latter purpose prevails among the mass victims of lawful plunder when they, in turn, seize the power to make laws! Until that happens, the few practice lawful plunder upon the many, a common practice where the right to participate in the making of law is limited to a few persons. But then, participation in the making of law becomes universal. And then, men seek to balance their conflicting interests by universal plunder. Instead of rooting out the injustices found in society, they make these injustices general. As soon as the plundered classes gain political power, they establish a system of reprisals against other classes. They do not abolish legal plunder. (This objective would demand more enlightenment than they possess. ) Instead, they emulate their evil predecessors by participating in this legal plunder, even though it is against their own interests.

It is as if it were necessary, before a reign of justice appears, for everyone to suffer a cruel retribution -- some for their evilness, and some for their lack of understanding.--Frederic Bastiat

Burke summed it up with this statement "Liberty without wisdom, and without virtue is folly, vice, and madness, without tuition or restraint." (Reflections on the Revolution in France, 1790.)

And do you imagine that the government can impart wisdom and virtue?

164 posted on 12/22/2001 4:44:44 PM PST by A.J.Armitage
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To: rob777
As far as I can recall, this is the only article I have read from LewRockwell.com in which I find little to criticize. I'm sort of speechless right now.
165 posted on 12/22/2001 4:44:49 PM PST by beckett
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To: gg188
Does or does not this article mean that folks will be able to keep their pot stashes legally? That's the important part of libertarianism to lots of these "libertarians" who post to FR.

And true to form, the anti-libertarian crowd chimes in with their own personal obsession -- drugs.

166 posted on 12/22/2001 4:50:49 PM PST by Jolly Rodgers
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To: rob777
An example of a principle we forget in this debate:

Suppose the US had a law against abortion, would it 'follow then' that the US 'may' "morally" put economic sanctions on countries or even wage war on a country that allows abortion?

In short I'm bringing up the concept of "sphere of application" for certain "group rights" and how the scope is dependent on the right being claimed.

If we orient ourselves toward granular government and concert our efforts against allowing mass democracy to bulldoze over the availability of choice, we have to manage the co-existance problems and what you might call the transition/implementation problem. The latter I think calls on a different form of lawmaking that is not so binary and tries to phase-in or out various prohibitions.

So, recognizing a community has the right to live 'porn-free' or drug-free, but denying blanket democratic imposition of these rights on any larger scale, we go on to say: If a community is evolving toward a prohibition or repeal, they must proceed using a guideline for transition-- one that doesnt "turn people into criminals overnight" nor "let the drug trade out of a cage".

167 posted on 12/22/2001 5:19:12 PM PST by mindprism.com
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Comment #168 Removed by Moderator

Comment #169 Removed by Moderator

To: Christian_Egalitarian; OWK
Pro-life libertarian here.

Here, too. The right to life is the pinnacle of all rights.

There are always conflicting rights, and any judgement of which should predominate in a given conflict is the critical factor in applying this principle.

Name for me a set of "conflicting rights", and I promise you that I can disprove one of them.

170 posted on 12/22/2001 7:08:30 PM PST by John R. (Bob) Locke
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To: Christian_Egalitarian
<< I offer that both most Libertarians and most Objectivists reach the same conclusions about social issues that social liberals do. Drugs, abortion... There is equivalence by result.>>

What about all the issues where libertarians reach the opposite conclusions from liberals --taxes, property rights, affirmative action? And libertarians are split on the abortion issue.

171 posted on 12/23/2001 7:32:10 AM PST by Lchris
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To: rdb3
<< Of course, libertarianism can encompass everything from cultural hedonism to ultra-traditional conservatism to everything in between.>>

Hence, IMHO, a tremendous weakness in libertarian thought.>>

That is really it's strength. The only thing libertarians need agree on is a noncoercive society. While I'm aware that people can argue about exactly what this means, it really isn't ambiguous most of the time, especially compared to other ideals such as a "just" or "moral" society.

<< Now, again, just what is libertarianism?...How do you sell a point which can be defined in so many different ways? The non-initiation of force and laissez-faire economic stance of libertarianism is highly attractive. But is that all there is to it? >>

Well, every political philosophy from socialism to conservatism is defined differently by different thinkers. But, yes, non-initiation of force IS basically "all there is to it." The disagreements are ironing out what this means, which is obvious on many issues and less obvious in others (e.g. abortion). What makes libertarianism fundamentally different is that all other political philosophies are based on a model like Plato's Republic --they have a very specific vision of an ideal society. Libertarianism, on the other hand, allows for many different "utopias," the only condition being that they don't infringe on one another. This is probably an ideal that will never be fully realized (like any ideal), but it's the one that allows for the most freedom. So when people complain that it's too "vague" or encompasses too many possibilities, they are missing that this is the very point of libertarianism.

172 posted on 12/23/2001 7:46:26 AM PST by Lchris
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To: Lchris
Aight, I can vibe with you. I respectfully disagree, but I can rap to you about this with respect. This is often not the case here as I'm sure you are well aware.

You say that this is a strength of libertarianism, right? But let me ask you this question. Does the concept of "over-diversification" mean anything to you, as in the business model?

173 posted on 12/23/2001 8:26:43 AM PST by rdb3
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To: rob777
None of these arguments plausibly supports the idea that libertarianism is incompatible with a strongly traditionalist moral outlook.

The article comes close to implying that Libertarianism actually facilitates traditionalism, because traditionalism will triumph based on Darwinian principles, if allowed to act in an unfettered manner. That is an empirical matter, and I suspect wrong. It also misses the point, the point being that the issue is to what degree can traditionalism tolerate non-traditionalism in its midst, for the good and just society to survive and prosper, and facilitate the legitimate pursuit of human happiness?

Libertarianism is superficially attractive in suggesting that everyone has a right to do their own thing, provided that it does not impose costs on others. Traditionalists would have a weak case in opposing this. To do so smacks of officious intermedling, and a certain cultural hubris. It would also choke off cultural experimentation that might be healthy and necessary as technology and other external conditions evolve.

The rub of course is the "not imposing costs on others" bit. Most of our actions and cultural morays impact others, and impose costs and/or offer benefits. Tolerating Darwinian poverty, an uneducated populace that in too many instances can't afford or chooses not be seek knowledge, untrammeled substance abuse, irresponsible procreation, environmental pollution, a lack of revenues derived from coercive taxation necessary to finance the common defense and roads and public safety, does impose costs on the society at large that are not resolved by any private contract, and are not internalized in the price system. Someone is getting a free lunch, and someone is paying for it, no matter how much the libertarians would wish to deny it, and avoid dealing with it.

Thus the task is to find a balance between individual liberty and community concerns. Libertarian sensibilities and methods of internalizing as much as reasonably possible into the price system are useful in arriving at the most optimal balance, but not the whole solution. Much of it is beyond ideology, and must rely on practical experience and empirical data, the use of which must be combined with ideology, in seeking that elusive golden mean.

174 posted on 12/23/2001 9:05:40 AM PST by Torie
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To: rdb3

You mean over-diversification, like when a government involves itself in a bunch of things it has no business doing, like regulating how much water we can have in our toilets?

175 posted on 12/23/2001 9:39:34 AM PST by MadameAxe
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To: MadameAxe
Nope. Try again.
176 posted on 12/23/2001 9:53:53 AM PST by rdb3
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To: Lchris
When talking about common ground between the libertarians, and the conservatives or the liberals, you should bear in mind that "conservative" and "liberal" are politically relative terms. The degree of overlap will be determined by the "conservatives" and the "liberals" as they exist in the current political environment, and not by the libertarians.
177 posted on 12/23/2001 10:11:54 AM PST by tacticalogic
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To: rdb3
Hmm. From here:
Over-Diversification: Keeping an eye on opportunities for expansion is an important part of maintaining a healthy and successful business. But too much emphasis on diversification can be a bad thing, according to the study.

Take Amazon.com. The e-retailer leveraged its success away from music and books and into unrelated areas and got burned. For example, its furniture store, a partnership with Living.com, was shut down last August when Living.com folded.

Over-diversification is a problem because growth and innovation alone aren't sufficient means for achieving lasting success. Innovation must be tempered with efficiency, profitability and true wealth creation, according to the study.
Are you saying that this doesn't happen to governments?
... Take US FedGov. The central government leveraged its success away from liberty and justice for all, and into unrelated areas and got burned. For example, its BATF, an organization that should never have existed due to it's conflict with the Second Amendment, now incarcerates, or in some cases incinerates, citizens whom it finds in violation of its picayune firearms regulations. ...

I would agree that growth and expansion are not a moral ambition for the government, but that doesn't seem to stop them.

In what way do you think this principle applies to libertarianism? Or were you using a different definition of "over-diversification"?

178 posted on 12/23/2001 10:23:48 AM PST by MadameAxe
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To: MadameAxe
I think what he meant is that the definition was so watered down and generalized in order to create a big tent covering so many diverse views resulting in so many divergent and contradictory applications in actual practice, that it became "over-diversified" such that it was drained of meaningul content.
179 posted on 12/23/2001 10:53:56 AM PST by Torie
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To: MadameAxe
Stevie Wonder can see that the government has extended itself into areas in which the Constitution does not permit it.

Over-diversification, as I posed to Lchris in political theory, is an apparent "strength" to him or her (don't know which by the name). Thus, I speak of over-diversification being the cause of a poor theorectical basis for the philosophy of libertarianism.

It appears to lack glue and cohesiveness. The libertarianism, say, of The Cato Institute and of a site like LewRockwell.com appear different outside of the non-initiation of force idea. Which one is the most indicative of libertarianism? If it is up to the interpreter, then you must admit that all interpretations of libertarianism are correct.

If not, which definition is correct? And what is this called? Circular-reasoning.

Over-diversification, therefore, makes libertarianism weak in its ability to gain any headway in its success of seating its members in seats of Congress, which is the point of any political party and its philosophy. Otherwise, it is just mass theorizing. And this is not surprising, seeing that as you mentioned Amazon.com weakened itself by overreaching.

You can't be good at everything.

180 posted on 12/23/2001 10:55:02 AM PST by rdb3
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To: rdb3
The libertarianism, say, of The Cato Institute and of a site like LewRockwell.com appear different outside of the non-initiation of force idea.

The non-initiation of force idea is the single core, ideal and principle of libertarianism. It is in the details of its practical application that you notice the disagreements between the Catos and Rockwells.

Is there a single uniting principle of conservatism, other than to "conserve" something? Does it matter what is being "conserved"? If not, then I would say it is not libertarians who are over-diversified.

Over-diversification, therefore, makes libertarianism weak in its ability to gain any headway in its success of seating its members in seats of Congress, which is the point of any political party and its philosophy.

"Libertarianism" is not the same thing as "the Libertarian Party". The article was not discussing the goals of a political party.

181 posted on 12/23/2001 11:18:34 AM PST by MadameAxe
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To: MadameAxe
I'm not seeking contentiousness.

If "libertarianism" is not the "Libertarian Party," then you have just added gasoline to the fire of its non-definition.

Again, what is it?

182 posted on 12/23/2001 11:23:59 AM PST by rdb3
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Comment #183 Removed by Moderator

To: rdb3
I'm not seeking contentiousness.
Neither am I.

If "libertarianism" is not the "Libertarian Party," then you have just added gasoline to the fire of its non-definition.

Again, what is it?
Hmm. I think this must be somehow key to understanding why many people don't see why l/Libertarians are happy that Ron Paul achieved office, even though it wasn't with an "L" label. To me it doesn't matter what letter you have on your "team" jacket, it's what's inside that counts -- whether you agree with and follow the principle of non-initiation of force.

On that somewhat off-topic note, there are two ideas that seem to me to be worth considering, in the interest of electing superior candidates. The first would be dispensing with parties and their labels altogether, which seems unlikely to happen given the entrenched nature of the "two-party" system. The second, possibly more palatable to the Party rank and file but less so to the "leaders", would be instant runoff voting. (There's another site I had found on this topic, www.fairvote.org, but it seems to be down at the moment).

/ramble...

184 posted on 12/23/2001 11:59:32 AM PST by MadameAxe
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To: tex-oma
This is just plain vanilla silly.

First off, nothing I do in this life nor the next is never and will never be "silly."

This is why I have such a hard time talking with self-professed libertarians: respect or the lack thereof.

Conservatism is well defined. Libertarianism does not appear to be as readily defined. So, if non-initation of force is the core principle, then, a democratic socialist who believes in this principle could be a libertarian, right?

If not, why not? You said this is the core belief. Is that all there is?

185 posted on 12/23/2001 12:30:35 PM PST by rdb3
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To: MadameAxe
Let me tell you now that I truly appreciate your tone in this discussion. I cannot say enough how much I respect those who show respect.

Outstanding.

I happen to like Ron Paul a lot. I take it that that you believe he is actually a libertarian within the Republican Party. I can see that as being fair. But this begs the question as to why many other libertarian politicians do not follow suit.

Care to take on that one?

186 posted on 12/23/2001 12:34:42 PM PST by rdb3
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To: Torie
Tolerating Darwinian poverty,

Government intervention in the economy always makes it worse.

an uneducated populace that in too many instances can't afford or chooses not be seek knowledge,

Sounds like inner city public schools to me.

untrammeled substance abuse,

Which we have now. The historical experience of Prohibition shows that it only gets worse when the government bans objects. (BTW, if the prohibition of alcohol needed an amendment to be Constitutional, why doesn't the prohibition of other drugs?)

irresponsible procreation,

Made possible by using the government as a solution for the first problem you listed.

environmental pollution,

You have a point, but I maintain that a way can be found to address it in a property rights framework.

187 posted on 12/23/2001 12:34:43 PM PST by A.J.Armitage
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Comment #188 Removed by Moderator

To: rdb3
So, if non-initation of force is the core principle, then, a democratic socialist who believes in this principle could be a libertarian, right?

Nope. Socialism involves the initiation of force in taking away people's property, and giving it to others who didn't earn it. Defining oneself as a libertarian socialist is an oxymoron.

189 posted on 12/23/2001 12:40:16 PM PST by MadameAxe
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Comment #190 Removed by Moderator

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To: Jolly Rodgers
"Truth be told, I'm not quite sure if my position on "open borders" is entirely consistent with the Libertarian Party's position. I would like to see quotaless immigration, but not without specific criteria."

Close enough.

Mark (Libertarian)

192 posted on 12/23/2001 12:50:31 PM PST by Mark Bahner
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To: A.J.Armitage
Government intervention in the economy always makes it worse.

Actually, not always, but often. The federal reserve does a pretty good job these days in dampening business cycles. The larger point of course is that some subsidies for the poor may benefit society as a whole, ie to the old poor, and to the physically handicaped, and perhaps to some others on a selective basis. The devil is in the details.

Sounds like inner city public schools to me.

Yes, but the issue is the subsidy. I am a big fan of school vouchers, but that involves a subsidy.

Which we have now. The historical experience of Prohibition shows that it only gets worse when the government bans objects. (BTW, if the prohibition of alcohol needed an amendment to be Constitutional, why doesn't the prohibition of other drugs?)

Yes, but maybe the legalization of all drugs is a bad idea. That is an empirical issue. I won't get into the constitutional issues. It is a states rights matter, and back when, the commerce clause had a more circumscribed interpretation.

Made possible by using the government as a solution for the first problem you listed.

As to procreation, maybe the government should be engaged in agitprop here. Cutting checks to welfare mothers was indeed a bad idea in practice as it turned out. Again, it is an empirical issue.

You have a point, but I maintain that a way can be found to address it in a property rights framework.

Much enviromental polution can be addressed with pollution credits etc, but again that involves governmental intervention. It is not practical to round up the hundreds or thousands or millions that are affected by a polluter, to contract it out. And sometimes even pollution credits, for reasons I won't get into, are simply not practicable, and proscription is the only alternative.

193 posted on 12/23/2001 12:51:25 PM PST by Torie
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To: tex-oma
I owe you nothing due to your lack of respect.

Good day.

194 posted on 12/23/2001 12:57:41 PM PST by rdb3
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To: MadameAxe
What you described here is taxation in general.
195 posted on 12/23/2001 12:59:06 PM PST by rdb3
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To: rdb3
First off, nothing I do in this life nor the next is never and will never be "silly." This is why I have such a hard time talking with self-professed libertarians: respect or the lack thereof.

I'm sorry, but it manifestly is silly. Demanding respect for silliness is itself silly. Deal with it.

Conservatism is well defined. Libertarianism does not appear to be as readily defined. So, if non-initation of force is the core principle, then, a democratic socialist who believes in this principle could be a libertarian, right? If not, why not? You said this is the core belief. Is that all there is?

Now really, if you insist on a punctilious demand for respect for your comments, you shouldn't say things like that. It's like asking if an athiest who accepts Jesus Christ as his personal Lord and Savior can both be a Christian and remain an athiest. The answer in both cases is, not if he cares about the principle of non-contradiction.

It's conservatism that lacks definition, by definition. It's reluctance to accept radical change. It must, then, radically depend on what already exists.

196 posted on 12/23/2001 1:01:30 PM PST by A.J.Armitage
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To: A.J.Armitage
You, too.

Thanx.

Any others while we are at it? May as well go ahead and get it out of the way with now.

197 posted on 12/23/2001 1:03:17 PM PST by rdb3
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To: A.J.Armitage
BTW, if the prohibition of alcohol needed an amendment to be Constitutional, why doesn't the prohibition of other drugs?

Great question! I don't see how there can be a logical answer other than there must be a Constitutional amendment for federal prohibition of these things. It's these gaping unconstitutional pot holes that never get looked at or talked about -- much less filled -- that make me doubt this nation's collective sanity sometimes.

And Social Security, Medicare, federal welfare, and federal involvement in education -- do they have even a fig lead of Consitutional legitimacy? I don't see how they can, but the fact that their legitimacy is never questioned (except by the occasional libertarian here at FR) makes me think that maybe I'm overlooking something. I'm not, am I?

198 posted on 12/23/2001 1:05:26 PM PST by Yardstick
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Comment #199 Removed by Moderator

To: rdb3
There really isn't much in common between paleo cons and neo cons. Conservatism is indeed a rather muddled concept. In practice in the public square of practical politics, it is about a bit less government, and bit more reliance on market forces, a bit more tolerance for religion in the public square, a bit more of a daddy rather than a mommy state preference, a bit more of an interest in a robust military, and a bit less redistribution, than modern liberalism. It is about rather marginal differences around an essential centrism. Moving out beyond that, and it is bit chaotic out there, just like Free Republic.
200 posted on 12/23/2001 1:11:31 PM PST by Torie
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