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Kim Jong Il is dead. Long Live Capitalism!

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Lawrence Posted: Sun, Dec 18 2011 10:58 PM

Libertarianmonarchy.com

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Gero replied on Sun, Dec 18 2011 11:42 PM

You could have said you created a blog instead of lying about the post’s content with a deceptive title, but you want attention, so I will give you some.

Your self-description: “Brilliant. Glorious. Philanthropic. Genius.  What more can be said? I am talented in every field. Loved and respected by all and hated by none. A God among men. Of course, I believe the best, of my many many magnificent qualities, is that I am very very humble.”

Maybe your friends and family will be amused by this, but to a stranger it can be viewed as arrogant. However, perhaps your blog will be more comedic than serious, so your self-description may be consistent with your blog’s light-hearted theme.

Your website’s title, Libertarian Monarchy, is argued. You say, “Hoppe is against democracy but believes Anarcho-Capitalism, a system of competing private and purely defensive governments can work. When referring to democracy, Hoppe accurately explains how competition between politicians is bad. Competition forces the elected officials to be the best liars, demagogues, and manipulators. Hoppe does not develop and expand on this concept further, which is why I believe he lacks a proper understanding of political systems, particularly anarcho-capitalism.” Hoppe wrote a whole book the subject. You can read the intro online.

You say, “In anarcho-capitalism, competition between governments is encouraged.”

Anarcho-capitalism means governments don’t exist. There can be private defense agencies, private courts, private military groups, but no governments. Your critique of anarcho-capitalism is based on misunderstanding it. It is about voluntarily-funded security providers, not tax-funded governments.

I agree with much of what you say, but persuading non-libertarians will likely take more effort. For example, you say, “The government has made a complete mess of elementary/high school by managing it into the ground(because of the influence of teachers unions and the general incompetence and inefficiency of government)”. This is not news to libertarians, but brand new to others. To reinforce this point, cite, for example, Stupid in America, a 20/20 expose of U.S. public schooling.

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Bert replied on Mon, Dec 19 2011 12:01 AM

Is this serious?

I had always been impressed by the fact that there are a surprising number of individuals who never use their minds if they can avoid it, and an equal number who do use their minds, but in an amazingly stupid way. - Carl Jung, Man and His Symbols
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Lawrence replied on Mon, Dec 19 2011 12:01 AM

I wasn't "lieing". I just didn't feel like adding anything to the title, so I plugged my website lol. That way I could hear other people's opinions about the topic.

The self-description was obviously meant to be humorous. Anyone who is annoyed by a simple joke should not be reading radical libertarian thoughts.

I didn't intend to insult Hoppe. I respect him very much. I was simply stating that I believe he is wrong about anarcho-capitalism.

"Anarcho-capitalism means governments don’t exist." That all depends on how you define government. The crux of my argument is that the private defense agencies will merge with eachother and then restrict competition. Shareholders of the private defense agencies don't want to put their capital at risk. They want to eliminate competition. Hoppe tries to apply a free market solution to government. But the problem is that the government uses "coercion". How can there be a free market in the production of coercion. It's an unfree market.

Regarding the point about education, I have an article called the education bubble which I thought would be sufficient. http://www.libertarianmonarchy.com/education.htm

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Bert replied on Mon, Dec 19 2011 12:16 AM

I think you grossly misunderstood a lot of what he had to say, and the concept of PDA's in general.

I had always been impressed by the fact that there are a surprising number of individuals who never use their minds if they can avoid it, and an equal number who do use their minds, but in an amazingly stupid way. - Carl Jung, Man and His Symbols
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Lawrence replied on Mon, Dec 19 2011 12:26 AM

I did not misunderstand. But I'll outline a scenario:

So, let's say we magically switch to an anarcho-capitalist society. Everyone magically became a libertarian we dismantled government and subscribed to private defense insurance companies. The companies would be owned by shareholders. The shareholders would not want to lose their lifesavings if another company comes along that is more efficient than them. If there are 30 large agencies, they would all feel the same way. So there would be an extremely strong tendency to merge together, for the "public good", and once there is a large government-like agency it would shut down smaller agencies and restrict new entry into the industry.

Explain how Hoppe would deal with this problem?

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Bert replied on Mon, Dec 19 2011 12:34 AM

You just created a hypothetical strawman scenario, and expect how one would answer in said scenario.  I don't know how Hoppe would deal with that, since I don't know him, but I'll answer anyway.

Assuming there are 30 PDA's in some given territory that all have a mutual feeling, why would you also assume they would want to merge together?  I assume outside of these 30 there is no other competition, no other threat that's more productive than these assumed equally good companies, so if anything these 30 would want to eliminate competition, not join the competition (if you're not losing profits and let's say you're in the top 10, why would you consider merging?)  What's the "public good" and how would they restrict other agencies from entering the market?  The PDA's don't make the law.

I had always been impressed by the fact that there are a surprising number of individuals who never use their minds if they can avoid it, and an equal number who do use their minds, but in an amazingly stupid way. - Carl Jung, Man and His Symbols
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Bert replied on Mon, Dec 19 2011 12:38 AM

What you do assume is that people have to pay the PDA for services, you forget these transactions are voluntary and the PDA's are at the whims of it's customers.  They don't have to pay the PDA's for their services if they do not want them.  You believe the PDA must exist just as a government coerces it's will on it's subjects, it's not the same.  If the people feel the PDA is not up to their "demands" they can end it's payments (or said insurance companies can do the same, depending on who's contracted through and with who).

I had always been impressed by the fact that there are a surprising number of individuals who never use their minds if they can avoid it, and an equal number who do use their minds, but in an amazingly stupid way. - Carl Jung, Man and His Symbols
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Gero replied on Mon, Dec 19 2011 1:00 AM

“That all depends on how you define government.”

It is an involuntary, usually tax-funded, violence monopoly in a certain area.

“So, let's say we magically switch to an anarcho-capitalist society. Everyone magically became a libertarian we dismantled government and subscribed to private defense insurance companies.”

This means that libertarianism gained widespread acceptance, so reversing it would require quite a counterargument or outside subjugation (another state invades).

“The companies would be owned by shareholders. The shareholders would not want to lose their lifesavings”

I doubt people would put their entire life savings in one company.

If there is a merger, it has to be agreed to by the companies. If there is any unjust coercion, the media coverage would be quote critical. Shareholders could protest by selling. The stock could be short sold. Alternative private defense agencies could offer a better alternative. The emergence of a government in a libertarian society would be very difficult. The population would presumably have access to firearms (including modern assault rifles, body armor, and the rest), so conquering them to tax them would entail much cost to achieve meager benefits.

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Are you an anarcho-monarchist too?

If so, awesome! You're the only other person like me that I know.

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MaikU replied on Mon, Dec 19 2011 9:09 AM

"People cry on the streets"

 

Oh Stokholm Syndrom, oh you....

"Dude... Roderick Long is the most anarchisty anarchist that has ever anarchisted!" - Evilsceptic

(english is not my native language, sorry for grammar.)

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Bert replied on Mon, Dec 19 2011 10:03 AM

RothbardsDisciple, I don't think this guy is an "anarcho-monarchist" or whatever.  Just someone who is confused on what Hoppe had to say.

I had always been impressed by the fact that there are a surprising number of individuals who never use their minds if they can avoid it, and an equal number who do use their minds, but in an amazingly stupid way. - Carl Jung, Man and His Symbols
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Looks to me like he might be a minarchist variety of monarchist. (I was at one point too). Sorry, I was just excited. xD

By the way, for me Monarchism is a strictly symbolic, nominal thing. Not something that really matters to my politics at all.

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Bert replied on Mon, Dec 19 2011 10:22 AM

It's symbolic for me also, but you try to put an anarcho-capitalist twist on it.

I had always been impressed by the fact that there are a surprising number of individuals who never use their minds if they can avoid it, and an equal number who do use their minds, but in an amazingly stupid way. - Carl Jung, Man and His Symbols
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Out of curiosity Bert, what twist - or lack of a twist - do you put on monarchism? Is your monarchism anarchistic too?

Simply interested to compare our philosophies. =)

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Lawrence replied on Mon, Dec 19 2011 11:48 AM

I am not an anarcho-monarchist.

See the basic problem of reality is that everyone wants to steal from each other. That is a clear praxeological insight. Everyone(including libertarians) wants to make themselves wealthier and an easy way to do that is to take what others have through coercion. So society has a prisoner's dilemma. If no one steals from eachother then a free market will exist and everyone can be very wealthy. But the individual can be made better off if he steals. So what happens is everyone will steal, trying to make themselves wealthier as individuals, but as a society we become much poorer.

I believe that "anarchy" a system with no government, but more importantly no coercion, is the ideal system. The problem is coercion exists, it cannot be eliminated. Therefore, the problem with every political system is that it requires the use of force(coercion) to stop the aggressor. In a democracy everyone is given coercion through voting. In anarcho-capitalism anyone can open up a PDA and use coercion. At least in a monarchy only the king has the right to coerce. So the use of coercion is limited to one person, even though zero would be ideal.

Now the anarcho-capitalists will claim that competition will make sure that no coercion exists. That is simply wrong. Competition is not good when it comes to the product of government; coercion. Competition increases production, increases efficiency and innovation. That is only good when it comes to the production of goods. But do we want an increase in efficiency of the production of "bads", that is "coercion". Obviously we want a monopoly(monarchy) in the production of coercion, so that supply can be restricted.

If anarcho-capitalism works, then explain to me why it hasn't in the real world. There's lots of competition between the countries of Africa. That has resulted in the exact outcome that my theory predicts.  Dictators compete with each other, and the most ruthless one wins out. If a dictator says I will respect private property, the people won't support him. The dictator must rob some people and give it to others to get very strong support.

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Lawrence replied on Mon, Dec 19 2011 12:02 PM

"If there is a merger, it has to be agreed to by the companies. If there is any unjust coercion, the media coverage would be quote critical. Shareholders could protest by selling. The stock could be short sold."

You are missing the point. There is an extremely strong tendencies for these companies to merge. If you want empirical evidence then open your eyes and look around, governments are not competing the way you claim they would. A government could supposedly get huge support, and become a PDA, if just one would offer protection and charge for it. But if that is not enough, let's think about he logic. Large shareholders, the ceo and others, have a big stake in the company they don't want it to go bankrupt. Every company is in this position. Therefore they all have mutual interests. If they compete with eachother, it is a constant headache. They all know that if they agree to merge all of their profits will soar. Then they will use force to restrict additional entry, and keep their profits high. You say that shareholders could protest by selling their shares or selling short. It's already too late. The capital investment(weapons production) has already been made. The companies have the firepower.

The anarcho-capitalists claim that a libertarian society would never let it happen. But that is ridiculous. Not everyone is an austrian economist. Not everyone is going to waste their time protesting for every little thing the PDA's do. And over time, generation after generation will become less and less libertarian, like what happened to the U.S.

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Lawrence replied on Mon, Dec 19 2011 12:07 PM

You are missing the point. There is an extremely strong tendencies for these companies to merge. If you want empirical evidence then open your eyes and look around, governments are not competing the way you claim they would. A government could supposedly get huge support, and become a PDA, if just one would offer protection and charge for it. But if that is not enough, let's think about he logic. Large shareholders, the ceo and others, have a big stake in the company they don't want it to go bankrupt. Every company is in this position. Therefore they all have mutual interests. If they compete with eachother, it is a constant headache. They all know that if they agree to merge all of their profits will soar. Then they will use force to restrict additional entry, and keep their profits high. You say that shareholders could protest by selling their shares or selling short. It's already too late. The capital investment(weapons production) has already been made. The companies have the firepower.

"eliminate competition, not join the competition (if you're not losing profits and let's say you're in the top 10, why would you consider merging?) "

Even if you are the most profitable company you would still rather merge, because your stock price is already valuing the company at it's accurate price. Merging would simply eliminate risk of loss. And not merging while every other company does merge would put you at huge risk of war with EVERY OTHER firm. In addition, once all the firms merge, they can restrict competition and start stealing from the public. That is where the real massive profits come in.

 

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Your King is immoral and a tyrant because he would steal and use coercion. My King is Just and Righteous, representing the sovereignty of the Individual.

And we don't want any aggression; we want to abolish it entirely. If there is any criminal organization, whatever it is, I want it abolished. Think of me as an anti-criminal extremist.

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John James replied on Mon, Dec 19 2011 12:34 PM

Gero:
You could have said you created a blog instead of lying about the post’s content with a deceptive title, but you want attention
Bert:
Is this serious?

Just check this spammer's post history.  This is all he does.  Virtually every post in this Mises Forum (and probably plenty of others) is plugging this idiotic website of his.  He's been warned by mods multiple times.  And now it would appear he's graduated to bait & switch thread titles.

I wouldn't feel bad about a ban.

 

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Burn em on the stake.

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Gero replied on Mon, Dec 19 2011 1:05 PM

“Regarding the point about education, I have an article called the education bubble which I thought would be sufficient.”

I read your front page education paragraph, not the education article, so my initial criticism was likely premature.

“See the basic problem of reality is that everyone wants to steal from each other.”

I don’t. Those who inhabit my household don’t. Humans cooperate. Stealing is discouraged. It is legally punished (some forms of it anyway).

“That is a clear praxeological insight.”

I doubt that.

“Everyone(including libertarians) wants to make themselves wealthier and an easy way to do that is to take what others have through coercion.”

Everyone wants happiness, not necessarily wealth. You can be happy playing on videogame like Pac-Man. You don’t need the newest one. This upcoming Christmas, I was asked what I wanted. It was hard to think of much. I don’t want a fancy new car, cologne, clothing, gadgets, hardly anything. I am quite satisfied. Happiness can be acquired by just being with family and friends.

“So society has a prisoner's dilemma. If no one steals from eachother then a free market will exist and everyone can be very wealthy. But the individual can be made better off if he steals. So what happens is everyone will steal, trying to make themselves wealthier as individuals, but as a society we become much poorer.”

This everyone does steal or does not steal is a generalization. Some people will steal, not everyone or no one. This comes back to social norms, learning to respect one’s neighbors and fellow humans.

“The problem is coercion exists, it cannot be eliminated.”

It can be minimized.

“Now the anarcho-capitalists will claim that competition will make sure that no coercion exists.”

When you reference unidentified anarcho-capitalists, it allows you to say anything. I prefer if you say anarcho-capitalist Murray Rothbard said or anarcho-capitalist David Friedman said or something similar. If you are speculating about an anarcho-capitalist state of existence, go ahead, but don’t put words into the mouths of unidentified anarcho-capitalists.

From my anarcho-capitalist understanding, anarcho-capitalism is not about the absence of coercion. It is not about forever eliminating murder, rape, robbery, torture, abduction, and other evils. It is about deterring those evils via economic competition and individual choice that accompanies it. It is about removing the greatest mass murderer and thief ever: government.

“Obviously we want a monopoly(monarchy) in the production of coercion, so that supply can be restricted.”

If you have to use the word ‘obviously’, then your assertion likely is not obvious. I don’t like dictators even if they are called monarchs.

“If anarcho-capitalism works, then explain to me why it hasn't in the real world.”

Source: “Even if government was inevitable, it should still be resisted. Theft may always occur, but that does not mean it should not be resisted. If government is inevitable, how did the Icelandic Free State exist for about 300 years? Norwegian King Harald Fairhair’s attempt to increase his control over Norway caused many residents to flee to Iceland. They practiced anarcho-capitalism. Historians called their private defense agencies ‘chieftains’. Chieftains depended on pleasing consumers. If consumers were unsatisfied, they could withdraw support. The Icelandic Free State’s downfall was due to the emergence of government. In the 990s, King Olaf I of Norway sent militant Christians to Iceland to forcibly convert the Icelanders. Refusal was often punished by torture or death. Some Icelanders who visited Norway became hostages and were threatened with torture and death unless Christianity became Iceland’s official religion. Eventually, Iceland did adopt Christianity, but chieftain competition meant life mostly continued as normal. A state church tax began in 1096, possible due to Christianization a century earlier. The chieftains were tax exempt. Eventually the chieftains acquired the churches, raised taxes, acquired other chieftains, and banned new chieftains. The Icelanders, suffering under warring chieftains, asked Norwegian King Haakon to intervene. Governments, while historically common, are not inevitable. They are the result of the ideas people believe.”

“There's lots of competition between the countries of Africa. That has resulted in the exact outcome that my theory predicts.”

Governments fight other governments, so anarchy (absence of governments) is bad. There is a flaw in this argument.

“If you want empirical evidence then open your eyes and look around, governments are not competing the way you claim they would.”

I said private defense agencies (voluntarily-funded ones), not governments, would compete.

“A government could supposedly get huge support, and become a PDA,”

A government can never be a private defense agency. The private in private defense agency distinguishes it from a public defense agency (a government). Private is shorthand for voluntary.

“And over time, generation after generation will become less and less libertarian, like what happened to the U.S.”

The U.S. was never libertarian. The Founding Fathers were not libertarian. They were varying degrees of statists.

Source: The American Revolution would likely not have been possible without deception by the secessionists. For example, the Boston Massacre, a biased name that has stuck over time, was when angry rock-throwing protestors outnumbered cornered British soldiers on March 5, 1770. Fearful for their lives, the soldiers fired, killing five Bostonians. Instead of this narrative being told, an alternative of the soldiers being vilified was spread. In U.S. histories of the American Revolution, King George III is usually treated unfairly. While he did escalate hostilities with the colonists, that was because they kept defying his authority. If the colonists thought King George III would acquiesce, they were wrong. If he did acquiesce, the colonists could have interpreted that as weakness and used it to justify further disobedience possibly to the point of a declaration of independence, convinced the weak King George III would acquiesce again. No matter the king’s actions, the colonists could use king’s actions to justify resistance. In fact, the king’s actions were insufficient to cause revolution. Deception was needed. Exaggerating the British threat, George Washington said on July 2, 1776, ‘The time is now near at hand which must probably determine, whether Americans are to be, Freemen, or Slaves; whether they are to have any property they can call their own; whether their Houses, and Farms, are to be pillaged and destroyed, and they consigned to a State of Wretchedness from which no human efforts will probably deliver them. The fate of unborn Millions will now depend, under God, on the Courage and Conduct of this army—Our cruel and unrelenting Enemy leaves us no choice but a brave resistance, or the most abject submission; this is all we can expect—We have therefore to resolve to conquer or die’. Britain sought to tax the colonies, not exterminate them, but making war sound inevitable helps quiet skepticism. The colonial rebels did not just exaggerate British aggression. They persecuted those who were not convinced of the benefits of secession. For example, in 1776, General Israel Putnam saw colonists parading detained non-rebels in New York. After attempting to stop this unjust public shaming of people who disagree, Washington told Putnam that ‘to discourage such proceedings was to injure the cause of liberty in which they were engaged, and that nobody would attempt it but an enemy of his country.’ Criticism of the revolution was risky. One could be tortured by tarring and feathering or hanged or fined or whatever else intolerant rebels could think of as a punishment. The phrase ‘lynch mob’ or ‘lynching’ was likely named after Judge Charles Lynch who oversaw the persecution of those insufficiently supportive of secession. Suspects were quickly convicted and punished by forced pledges of allegiance, military conscription, property confiscation, whipping, and likely other means. Lynch’s actions were retroactively legitimized in 1782 by the Virginia General Assembly. The U.S. Declaration of Independence, the explanation for why the thirteen American colonies were seceding from the British Empire to form independent states, partially said, ‘The History of the Present King of Great-Britain is a History of repeated Injuries and Usurpations, all having in direct Object the Establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States.’ Britain was likely the second freest nation, only surpassed by Switzerland. The colonists had a lower tax burden than British citizens. The largest signature on the Declaration of Independence was by the rich smuggler John Hancock. When the British Parliament lowered the tax on tea imported to the colonies, Hancock and fellow smugglers lost potential profits. To protest his fellow Americans benefiting from lower prices, Hancock and fellow smugglers decided to dump the tea into the Boston Harbor. This desire to control commerce to benefit certain groups would extend to the revolution and to the rest of U.S. history. Lacking the power to tax and the credibility to repay lenders, the Continental Congress (also called the Congress of the Confederation or the United States in Congress Assembled) decided to issue paper money (known as Continentals) to fund the Revolutionary War (1775-1783). A continental was supposed to be redeemable on demand in specie (precious metal coin), but Congress broke that promise by issuing more Continentals than could be redeemable in specie. The Continental was worth so little the phrase ‘not worth a Continental’ was created. Those who were paid with devaluing Continentals sold them so they could live. Most state currencies were worth little due to wartime inflation. Foreign lenders and wealthy U.S. continental holders demanded they be repaid in specie. Lacking the specie to repay all the lenders, states confiscated property from citizens to pay the debt. In one case, U.S. citizens rebelled. Shays’ Rebellion (1786–1787) was a roughly 1,200 man armed uprising in Massachusetts led by former Continental Army Captain Daniel Shays. The Massachusetts state legislature sought to rapidly repay its debts by raising taxes while demanding immediate repayment of all debts. Many farmers were impoverished. They could not pay their debts with money that lost value while in their pockets. Many of the members of Shays’ Rebellion were unpaid Revolutionary War veterans. Protest complaints included the high taxation level, the governor’s high salary, the expensive court costs, and the state’s refusal to issue paper money to help the debtor class. Shay and others peacefully protested, but they were ignored. In the secret meetings that occurred before the uprising, farmer Plough Jogger best summarized how many rebels felt: ‘I have been greatly abused, have been obliged to do more than my part in the war, been loaded with class rates, town rates, province rates, Continental rates and all rates . . . been pulled and hauled by sheriffs, constables and collectors, and had my cattle sold for less than they were worth . . . The great men are going to get all we have and I think it is time for us to rise and put a stop to it, and have no more courts, nor sheriffs, nor collectors nor lawyers.’ Shays’ Rebellion lasted for months until stopped by federal troops when the rebels tried to attack a federal arsenal at Springfield. Shays escaped into Vermont which was not yet a state. The federal troops were funded by eastern merchants, the people who were redeeming formerly worthless government bonds. Massachusetts governor James Bowdoin’s support for crushing the rebellion upset his electorate so much that he lost the next election. The widespread anger led to the election of pro-debtor government in states filled with political elites who wanted the people to just pay their taxes. These elites would later meet in Philadelphia to fix this problem by creating the U.S. Constitution. Historian Scott Trask said, ‘Exceeding their instructions (which were only to draw up a few amendments), the [Philadelphia Convention] delegates decided to throw out the Articles [of Confederation] altogether and write a new national constitution which was subsequently ratified by the states (but not without considerable opposition and probably a national majority opposed to it).’ In 2011, historian Tom Lingenfelter found a rare printed copy of the ‘Resolve of Congress of September 28, 1787’ which sent the proposed U.S. Constitution to state legislatures to acquire ratification. The document falsely claimed that the delegates ‘Resolved Unanimously’ when there was disagreement. PR Newswire reported ‘The vote at the state level could have gone either way. This official resolution, with the appearance of total agreement, was the defining moment.’ In a letter to James Madison, the primary author of the U.S. Constitution, George Washington said, ‘This apparent unanimity will have its effect.  Not everyone has the opportunities to peek behind the curtain and as the multitudes often judge from externals, the appearance of unanimity in that body (Congress) on this occasion will be of great importance.’ The greater power of the federal government was demonstrated on tax resisters. Economic historian Gary North said, ‘In 1794, Washington personally led an army of 13,000 to crush a tax revolt in Western Pennsylvania. This was the first and last time a President ever led troops into action. Because so few men volunteered, the Federal government imposed a draft. This was the whiskey rebellion. The revolt was against Hamilton's 1791 tax on whiskey -- a tax used to raise revenues to pay off Federal debts at face value -- debts that the holders had purchased for pennies. If this sounds like a replay of Shays' rebellion and its outcome, that's because it was, but on a far larger scale.’ While armed resistance to tax collection stopped, tax evasion remained. The whiskey tax was repealed by Thomas Jefferson’s Republican Party after it was elected in 1800.

One article that you should read is But Wouldn't Warlords Take Over?

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Lawrence replied on Mon, Dec 19 2011 2:13 PM

" “See the basic problem of reality is that everyone wants to steal from each other.”

I don’t. Those who inhabit my household don’t. Humans cooperate. Stealing is discouraged. It is legally punished (some forms of it anyway). "

You misunderstand my point. Humans don't have morals. Humans are like robots. We are programmed to make ourselves as happy(and wealthy, same thing) as possible. Theft can always make you better off, or at least equally satisfied. Obviously, most people don't steal, but if they ever were about to starve to death I promise you they will behave in whatever way possible to get food. My point is that morality does not influence society as much as you would think. Or else democracy would work. If everyone is so nice, why doesn't democracy work? Everyone should vote to not steal from eachother. But obviously they do want to steal from eachother.

"A government can never be a private defense agency. The private in private defense agency distinguishes it from a public defense agency (a government). Private is shorthand for voluntary."

You missed my entire point. Let me restate it. There are plenty of governments out there right now. Why doesn't competition emerge on it's own. If a single government would stop using coercion, and ask to be voluntarily funded, it should gain huge support. And as more people support the PDA it would grow and it would protect more and more people from their governments. And eventually, like in a free market, the best firm would win out.

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Merlin replied on Mon, Dec 19 2011 3:19 PM

 

Heck I love how libertarianism and monarchy go together. But my idea of a libertarian monarchy (or monarchical minarchysmiley) is different from what you expose: I think in terms of small city-states ruled by absolute monarchs, not in terms of the US run by a King, which would not be sustainable due to many reasons.

Also, I think that Hoppe’s idea that democracy is bad because there is a market for “bads” is untrue, to say the least, so I would not use that as an argument for monarchy.

But anyway, interesting ideas.    

The Regression theorem is a memetic equivalent of the Theory of Evolution. To say that the former precludes the free emergence of fiat currencies makes no more sense that to hold that the latter precludes the natural emergence of multicellular organisms.
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Gero replied on Mon, Dec 19 2011 4:34 PM

“Humans don't have morals. Humans are like robots.”

Morals can change over time, but that does not mean they don’t exist. Take murder. It can always be wrong (pacificism), sometimes be wrong (most people), and never be wrong (sociopathy). Reasons can be religious or secular, determined by social consensus or determined by a philosopher working alone in a room, but morality is not absent.

If humans didn’t have morals, then moral dilemmas wouldn’t apply to them. They wouldn’t argue about the morality of abortion or killing one person to save five in the trolley car thought experiment.

“We are programmed to make ourselves as happy(and wealthy, same thing) as possible.”

Happiness and wealth are different. One can be an ascetic monk and feel religious happiness, maybe euphoria while a wealthy person can quickly become bored with newly purchased stuff.

Source: What typically happens is a new car, computer, home, or other product is initially exciting, but that happiness fades showing that one’s newly acquired stuff only elicits temporary happiness. Human happiness is affected by comparison to one’s peers: one’s friends, family, coworkers, and former schoolmates. If one is less wealthy than one’s peers, one is likely to be less happy than one’s peers, but if one is equally wealthy with one’s peers, then happiness levels are about equal. Economist Robert H. Frank said, ‘Studies consistently find, for example, that when the incomes of everyone in a community grow over time, conventional measures of well-being show little change. Many critics of economic growth interpret this finding to imply that continued economic growth should no longer be a policy goal in developed countries. They argue that if money buys happiness, it is relative, not absolute, income that matters. As incomes grow, people quickly adapt to their new circumstances, showing no enduring gains in measured happiness. Growth makes the poor happier in low-income countries, critics concede, but not in developed countries, where those at the bottom continue to experience relative deprivation. All true. But these statements do not imply that economic growth no longer matters in wealthy countries. The reason, in a nutshell, is that happiness and welfare, though related, are very different things. Growth enables us to expand medical research and other activities that clearly enhance human welfare but have little effect on measured happiness levels . . . The fact that people adapt quickly to new circumstances, good or bad, is just a design feature of the brain’s motivational system. The fact that a paraplegic may continue to be happy does not imply that his condition has not reduced his welfare. Indeed, many well-adjusted paraplegics report that they would undergo surgery entailing substantial risk of death if doing so promised to restore their mobility. Similarly, the fact that people may adapt quickly to higher incomes says nothing about whether economic growth makes them better off.’

“Theft can always make you better off, or at least equally satisfied.”

Theft can make you worse off. You could be caught and punished. You could feel guilty. Theft can make one better off, but that possibility does not incentivize everyone to steal.

“Obviously, most people don't steal, but if they ever were about to starve to death I promise you they will behave in whatever way possible to get food.”

So we all will not act nice to survive in life-and-death situations. So what? Life is not a day-to-day life-and-death struggle.

“My point is that morality does not influence society as much as you would think.”

You do not need society (I think of big cities). Prehistoric hunter and gatherers (about 100-150 a group) influenced the youngsters. Empathy, cooperation, compassion, language, social norms: all are encouraged by people, notably one's parents.

“Or else democracy would work.”

Define work. I oppose majoritarian tyranny, democracy.

“Everyone should vote to not steal from eachother. But obviously they do want to steal from eachother.”

Most voters do not believe taxation is theft. It is rationalized as paying dues or love-it-or-leave-it or the nonexistent social contract or some other excuse to justify it.

“Why doesn't competition emerge on it's own.”

My government definition included its involuntary aspect. It does not allow competition. For example, read my Liberty Dollar Verdict post. An entrepreneur offered a currency and the government accused him of domestic terrorism. It was wiling to use a huge exaggeration in defense of its money monopoly.

“If a single government would stop using coercion, and ask to be voluntarily funded, it should gain huge support.”

A government that did that would end within days. Anyone can say they support education, healthcare, unemployment insurance, and other programs, but not many are willing to spend their own money on it. It is easy to be compassionate with other people’s money. I am not saying there will be no charity. People just wouldn’t be able to remain parasites on their fellow humans.

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Ha, four monarchists in this thread? Nice! Even if two of you are also minarchists, this is still pretty great.

I personally believe in a High King who holds dominion over the other Royalty. And my monarchism would probably be as Tolkienian (or more broadly English) as possible.  

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Bert replied on Mon, Dec 19 2011 5:55 PM

Out of curiosity Bert, what twist - or lack of a twist - do you put on monarchism? Is your monarchism anarchistic too?

I take the monarch for exactly what it is, a king or queen who is the heir to a kingdom, who's duty is to protect it's kingdom.  I view the monarch as the head of the tripartite division of social classes.  It's not anarchistic in anyway, and more Platonic than anything.  My interest in the monarch has less to do with politics and more to do with religion.

My King is Just and Righteous, representing the sovereignty of the Individual.

There's no way you can conclude your theoretical king will be just or righteous just because you will it in your mind.  The king is a mere human, he's not omniscient or unaffected by human error.

See the basic problem of reality is that everyone wants to steal from each other. That is a clear praxeological insight. Everyone (including libertarians) wants to make themselves wealthier and an easy way to do that is to take what others have through coercion. So society has a prisoner's dilemma. If no one steals from eachother then a free market will exist and everyone can be very wealthy. But the individual can be made better off if he steals. So what happens is everyone will steal, trying to make themselves wealthier as individuals, but as a society we become much poorer.

1. I don't want to steal.

2. The idea of wealth is subjective, how you're using it seems to be that everyone wants to maximize their material goods.  I disagree.

3. The individual will not be better off if he steals, this is only a temporary relief but does nothing of real productive effort in the long run.

In anarcho-capitalism anyone can open up a PDA and use coercion.

PDA's wouldn't coerce against innocent people, if they did they'd go out of business quick.

Obviously we want a monopoly (monarchy) in the production of coercion, so that supply can be restricted.

Monopoly =/= monarchy.  Restrict supply and you restrict freedom and choice.  What you're laying out (whether you know or agree) is essentially what we have now.  A monopoly on the production of security by the same supplier of rules, laws, and regulations.

If you want empirical evidence then open your eyes and look around, governments are not competing the way you claim they would. A government could supposedly get huge support, and become a PDA, if just one would offer protection and charge for it.

When did I claim governments would compete in any way?  Don't equate a PDA to government (which it seems you're doing).  Difference is the government takes payment (taxes) and then offers "security" whether you want it or not.  The people are not customers, but test subjects at the whims of the state.

Humans don't have morals. Humans are like robots.

Uh...  The statement is so ludicrous I don't know where to begin.

You missed my entire point. Let me restate it. There are plenty of governments out there right now. Why doesn't competition emerge on it's own. If a single government would stop using coercion, and ask to be voluntarily funded, it should gain huge support.

1. Governments limit competition, especially in the production of security of which it has a monopoly on.

2. Your logic is backwards, if it asked to be voluntarily funded it would not gain huge support, because whatever support or consent it has only exist because it's forced upon the people of the territory it's in, instead the people would voluntarily withdraw and actually choose something or nothing else.

I had always been impressed by the fact that there are a surprising number of individuals who never use their minds if they can avoid it, and an equal number who do use their minds, but in an amazingly stupid way. - Carl Jung, Man and His Symbols
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Interesting thoughts Bert.

There's no way you can conclude your theoretical king will be just or righteous just because you will it in your mind. The king is a mere human, he's not omniscient or unaffected by human error.

If he is not Just and Righteous, then he is not the hypothetical High King of my anarcho-monarchist utopia to begin with.

I take the monarch for exactly what it is, a king or queen who is the heir to a kingdom, who's duty is to protect it's kingdom.

I can agree with that. I see no issue with the King also functioning as a private enforcement agency. As long as there is no coercion, that is.

I view the monarch as the head of the tripartite division of social classes.

I would probably disagree with that. I would just say that there is a Royalty and its subjects. (Also, of course, there would be varying ranks in between, such as knights). My vision of the ideal monarchy would have to be secular.

 

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Bert replied on Mon, Dec 19 2011 6:47 PM

The problem is you are not accepting the reality and historical truth of what a king/queen and monarch are.  You use the terms, and a very simplistic idea, but you strip away all the substance, meaning, and symbolism behind it for your own liking.

If he is not Just and Righteous, then he is not the hypothetical High King of my anarcho-monarchist utopia to begin with.

This is just a crazed idea where everything works like clockwork to your liking.  Leave out what ought to be, and accept what is.  If the king/queen is the heir to a kingdom and you don't like the king/queen, tough luck.  I'm sure many people in time had a problem with some king they lived under, but they didn't have the role, position, and responsibility of the king nor was their own dislike any challenge to the king.  Nor was their own worth, value, and offering to the community any greater than that of the king.  The role and responsibility (and personhood) of a king is far and great in work.

I would probably disagree with that.  [...] My vision of the ideal monarchy would have to be secular.

Again, you are using the terms and idea, but stripping away it's substance.  I view the monarch how the monarch really is and has been for hundreds (if not thousands) of years.  You may disagree on the reason you just don't like it, but you can't disagree on the history and reality of monarchs.  I take a look and understand monarchs and kingdoms from the perspectives of those times and peoples and the roles and importance of the monarch.  You are viewing it from a modern political lense instead of a cultural and spiritual lense.

Though, I do have some qualms with monarchs post-Christian Europe when the old gods got switched out with the new one.  The monarchs seemed to get rather arrogant of their own place and power in society (I guess some omnipotent and omniscient god leads to an arrogant king who believes the same of himself - at least with the old gods the people weren't scared to sacrifice their own king when the times asked for it).

I had always been impressed by the fact that there are a surprising number of individuals who never use their minds if they can avoid it, and an equal number who do use their minds, but in an amazingly stupid way. - Carl Jung, Man and His Symbols
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The problem is you are not accepting the reality and historical truth of what a king/queen and monarch are.

I do not care about the reality or historical truth behind Monarchism, per se. I care much more for Tolkien's vision of Kings.

Leave out what ought to be, and accept what is.

"Liberalism wishes for what ought to be, irrespective of what is"~ Lord Acton

If the king/queen is the heir to a kingdom and you don't like the king/queen, tough luck.

Nope, I will promptly proceed to abolish any unjust, aggressive Kings and replace them with Libertarian ones. I'm a political radical.

You may disagree on the reason you just don't like it, but you can't disagree on the history and reality of monarchs.

Sure, like I said, my concept is more utopian. This is an aesthetic desire for after anarcho-capitalism is established.

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Bert replied on Mon, Dec 19 2011 7:22 PM

I do not care about the reality or historical truth behind Monarchism, per se. I care much more for Tolkien's vision of Kings.

Striving for a fictional idea, which is ironically influenced by the reality I'm pushing forth.  Tolkien was not ignorant of pre-Christian NW Europe and his work reflects this.  There's no "anarcho-monarchs", only kings as they were 1,000 years ago.

"Liberalism wishes for what ought to be, irrespective of what is"~ Lord Acton

"Science and our organized body of knowledge teach only what is, not what ought to be." - Mises, Theory & History

Nope, I will promptly proceed to abolish any unjust, aggressive Kings and replace them with Libertarian ones. I'm a political radical.

I assume in your dream world the entire class of people also has some disgust against said king.  I doubt you'd abolish it, but you're glad to leave the kingdom.

What you forget is the king/queen is the heir to the throne, by overthrowing the king/queen you overthrow the heir as well as the throne, which can be said to be theirs by blood or right.  This in itself is an act of aggression simply based on the idea that you don't like the monarch.  That's hardly enough reason.  If I don't like my boss, I don't over throw him, I leave or think about the pros and cons, whether my bias is personal or business.  If I don't like my father (head of the house hold, "king of the castle", etc.) I don't over throw him, I leave, etc.

Sure, like I said, my concept is more utopian. This is an aesthetic desire for after anarcho-capitalism is established.

It's imaginary.  A "kingdom of heaven on earth" concept.

I had always been impressed by the fact that there are a surprising number of individuals who never use their minds if they can avoid it, and an equal number who do use their minds, but in an amazingly stupid way. - Carl Jung, Man and His Symbols
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I was saying I would overthrow if there was taxation and a coercive monopoly on force, etc. So my vision of Monarchy is a Rothbardian one. I have no respect for Kings who are not Rothbardians; they are not really Kings at all, just tyrants.

There's no "anarcho-monarchs", only kings as they were 1,000 years ago.

There are no kings as they were 1000 years ago, only the system as it is now. You too wish for what ought to be (what was) and against what is.

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Wheylous replied on Mon, Dec 19 2011 7:32 PM

I will promptly proceed to abolish any unjust, aggressive Kings and replace them with Libertarian ones. I'm a political radical.

All bow to the mighty RD, who will deliver us from dictators with the flick of a wand.

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Wheylous - the sense implied was *attempt to* abolish. Just like how I am *attempting to* abolish the State.

I was not implying magic.

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Also, regarding my thoughts on Monarchy and Anarchy, Tolkien summarizes it best:

But Tolkien was, in his choleric way, giving voice to his deepest convictions regarding the ideal form of human society—albeit fleeting voice. The text of his sole anarcho-monarchist manifesto, such as it is, comes from a letter he wrote to his son Christopher in 1943 (forgive me for quoting at such length):

My political opinions lean more and more to Anarchy (philosophically understood, meaning the abolition of control not whiskered men with bombs)—or to ‘unconstitutional’ Monarchy. I would arrest anybody who uses the word State (in any sense other than the inanimate real of England and its inhabitants, a thing that has neither power, rights nor mind); and after a chance of recantation, execute them if they remained obstinate! If we could go back to personal names, it would do a lot of good. Government is an abstract noun meaning the art and process of governing and it should be an offence to write it with a capital G or so to refer to people. . . .

And anyway, he continues, “the proper study of Man is anything but Man; and the most improper job of any man, even saints (who at any rate were at least unwilling to take it on), is bossing other men”:

Not one in a million is fit for it, and least of all those who seek the opportunity. At least it is done only to a small group of men who know who their master is. The mediaevals were only too right in taking nolo episcopari as the best reason a man could give to others for making him a bishop. Grant me a king whose chief interest in life is stamps, railways, or race-horses; and who has the power to sack his Vizier (or whatever you dare call him) if he does not like the cut of his trousers. And so on down the line. But, of course, the fatal weakness of all that—after all only the fatal weakness of all good natural things in a bad corrupt unnatural world—is that it works and has only worked when all the world is messing along in the same good old inefficient human way. . . . There is only one bright spot and that is the growing habit of disgruntled men of dynamiting factories and power-stations; I hope that, encouraged now as ‘patriotism’, may remain a habit! But it won’t do any good, if it is not universal.

http://www.firstthings.com/onthesquare/2010/11/anarcho-monarchism

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Bert replied on Mon, Dec 19 2011 7:52 PM

So my vision of Monarchy is a Rothbardian one. I have no respect for Kings who are not Rothbardians; they are not really Kings at all, just tyrants.

What you are describing does not seem to be kings at all, just your twist on what kings should be, because of a political bias.  Eh, I suggest The Republic if you haven't read it yet, and if you have read it again.

There are no kings as they were 1000 years ago, only the system as it is now. You too wish for what ought to be (what was) and against what is.

Well, it would be foolish to say monarchs don't exist today.  In a way, yes, I have a traditionalist mindset and view, so I'm against a lot of what the modern world has to offer (which could be said to be "reactionary").  Difference is what I'm putting forth has existed, for a long time, til recently.  What you are thinking up in your mind is just a dream of your own creation from reading a fictional author and mixing in Rothbardian politics.  What I'm putting forth on this subject contrasts with the ought, it's only what is.  I assume you've never read anything on kingdoms, the culture surrounding them, roles and importance, etc. in history besides some Tolkien books, which isn't saying much.

I had always been impressed by the fact that there are a surprising number of individuals who never use their minds if they can avoid it, and an equal number who do use their minds, but in an amazingly stupid way. - Carl Jung, Man and His Symbols
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I assume you've never read anything on kingdoms, the culture surrounding them, roles and importance, etc. in history besides some Tolkien books, which isn't saying much.

I'd be interested in reading some history on Monarchy. Would you mind leaving some reading suggestions? (Besides The Republic, which I will read). Mixing in the tradition with my vision of a future Rothbardian Monarchy could be very conducive with regards to my aesthetic opinion on Kings. We'll eternally disagree on this subject (I'm an anarcho-capitalist first and anarcho-monarchist second), but I would love to do some reading on the subject.

I do think you lack a good appreciation of Tolkien though, which is unfortunate. The real world really isn't that great.  

What I'm putting forth on this subject contrasts with the ought, it's only what is.

I definitely agree with Acton/Rothbard on this. I don't much like this view of Mises'.

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Oh, I did read some of Hume's History of England, by the way. I'm an anglophile and don't care much for the rest of Europe.

 

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Bert replied on Mon, Dec 19 2011 8:17 PM

Would you mind leaving some reading suggestions?

I have nothing directly to offer.  It's pieced together from a lot of sources and topics surrounding pre-Christian Europe on a whole.  The Republic is the only thing I can think of that's more direct and gives a good idea of the tripartite division of social classes.

I do think you lack a good appreciation of Tolkien though, which is unfortunate. The real world really isn't that great.

I far from lack an appreciation of Tolkien (plus my girlfriend is a huge Tolkien fan).  I just appreciate what influenced him a lot more (Eddas, Sagas, Anglo-Saxon poetry, etc.).  The real world is amazing if you accept reality.

I had always been impressed by the fact that there are a surprising number of individuals who never use their minds if they can avoid it, and an equal number who do use their minds, but in an amazingly stupid way. - Carl Jung, Man and His Symbols
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Thanks a bunch anyway; that book looks like an excellent read. For the anarchist like me, how can I apply the history of monarchy to my ideal of Anarcho-Monarchism? I am genuinely curious. I would love to have a better and more definitive comprehension of this subject.

Regarding Tolkien, have you read The Silmarillion? It is a masterpiece.

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