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Marxism and the workers

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Buzz Killington posted on Sun, Apr 29 2012 11:37 AM

What does everyone here think of Marxism? Doesn't Karl Marx make a good point about capitalists and the workers?

I.e. the capitalist does nothing but sit around and give the workers only a portion of the value that they produce?

"Nutty as squirrel shit."

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The price of factors of production are determined via supply and demand. Thinking that workers receive a share of their factorites profits is like thinking that the iron that goes into the car receives a share of the cars selling price.

For more, check out Böhm-Bawerk's Marginal pairs: http://mises.org/daily/5903/

After learning what they are, see them applied to labor economics: http://mises.org/daily/5934/The-Irrelevance-of-Worker-Need-and-Employer-Greed-in-Determining-Wages

Finally, some stuff I just found that might be of interest as well:

http://mises.org/daily/1680

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uOzotWrHheU

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By "value" I mean how much money a certain item will bring. An example would be if I was hired by Willy Wonka to make chocolate, I create the "value" (the chocolate) through my labor, yet he only gives me a portion of the money that results from him selling the chocolate on the market.

 

That's a common misconception of the origin of value.  Your labor did not create the value; the buyers' desire did.  That is, your labor created chocolate.  The buyers' desire for chocolate made that chocolate valuable.  In your example, then, Mr. Wonka paid you an amount based on his desire to own the chocolate you produced and your unwillingness to produce the chocolate without compensation.  He purchased the output of your labor with a fee agreed upon by both of you.  After the transaction, why is it any of your business what he does with it, either eating it himself, or selling it to someone else?


faber est suae quisque fortunae

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Hey it's the weekend and these posts take a rather long time.  I'll be responding soon.

 

I do probably stand guilty of the charge of generalizing the views of some abstract propertarian on you.  That's my mistake, and is something I should not be doing.  It's just, a sort-of tendency amongst people in general.  Do you know how often I have to defend from the "all leftists want full government control of everything" charge? lol

Again, I shouldn't do it, even if it sometimes allows me to be accurate about a person with no previous inquiry.  I apologize, and if you think me doing it in the future, just let me know.

In States a fresh law is looked upon as a remedy for evil. Instead of themselves altering what is bad, people begin by demanding a law to alter it. ... In short, a law everywhere and for everything!

~Peter Kropotkin

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Laotzu del Zinn:

[T]hese posts take a rather long time.

QFT.

Just to give you one more thing to respond to (unless you'd prefer to just respond to this instead of previous posts):

From our conversation, I think that some of your points stem from a certain misunderstanding of humans.  I'll list some of the points you have made as I understand them:

  1. There should not be "private property" - that is, you do not believe it is just that any single person should have the final say on any given piece of property.
  2. That for there to be "private property", the original "owner" must necessarily have been the first person to initiate violence.
  3. All property should be "jointly owned property" - and more specifically, it should be considered "owned" by the people who use it.
  4. Might makes right, and you want this might to be in the hands of the working class.

I am going to respond to these points.  I do not believe they are straw men, as they are just paraphrases of things you have said.  Let me know if you believe these are not accurate and in what way they should be tweaked.

First, I would like to talk about the "might makes right" approach to law.  I do not agree with that approach.  That is the approach that forms the basis of statutory law, and in some very important ways I do not feel it really is "law" (it sort of is and it sort of isn't - I'll explain in a bit).  I would like to quote Clayton from his post What Law Is on the definition of law:

Clayton:

Law is the alternative to violent conflict when conflict-avoidance strategies (such as property lines) have failed to avoid conflict. In terms of rights in property, law is the production of new, stipulated property-lines which resolve real conflicts without further violence.

Different systems of law can form, but they do not necessarily have to be a "might makes right" system.  Clayton has explained the origin of law in his post A Praxeological Account of Law, and he has shown (I believe correctly) that the origin of law was not a "might makes right" approach.  He used the example of two men having a dispute, and these two men are of roughly equivalent size and weight.  It is dangerous for them to fight because one of them might lose.  This is why they try to settle the dispute verbally.  The reason they try to settle verbally is because neither one has the might to definitely win.  Obviously statutory law has become the dominant form of law in the modern world, but it was not always the case.  Many societies have had at some point (or still do have) common law, which is still a might makes right approach, but it is not centralized law; and customary law, which does not need to be a might makes right approach at all, though it does depend upon the society.  There have been other systems, but I don't feel the need to talk about them.

Earlier, I stated that statutory law is sort of law and sort of not law.  Obviously, it is law in the sense that it fulflls the definition of law; it does provide alternatives to settling disputes with further violence.  I also had said earlier in the thread that it is either superfluous or unjust, and it probably makes more sense to say it that way instead.  Let us use the example of slavery in the United States.  Not only was it considered lawful to own slaves, but it was considered lawful to kidnap escaped slaves and return them to their "owners".  I'm not sure much else really needs to be said about this other than the fact that while this was lawful, it was incredibly unjust.  However there were laws in the US at the time that were just (e.g. laws against theft).  But these laws would be superfluous, because they exist in customary law societies.

In short, I do not support a system of "might makes right", as the laws are either superfluous or unjust.

Second, I would like to address the point that for there to be "private property", the original owner must have necessarily been the one to initiate violence or the threat thereof.  Again, I would like to quote a passage from A Praxeological Account of Law:

There was a time before law. If we go far enough back in our evolutionary ancestry, we reach a point where our ancestors were not yet verbal. Since the ability to speak and engage in complex, rational argument is a precondition for law, these ancestors could not have had law. At some point, our ancestors acquired the ability to speak. At some later point, law emerged.

 

Of course, even before our ancestors could speak, they could get into disputes. Disputes occur between other animals frequently. Without the ability to speak, there are fewer ways in which to resolve disputes. Usually, dispute resolution between animals involves intimidating displays of force, threats, and violent or even deadly conflict. Disputes are costly and risky so, even in the non-verbal animal kingdom, there are dispute avoidance mechanisms. Birds mark their territory with sticks, dogs with urine, and so on. The behavior of establishing publicly visible borders is important because, as long as others see and abide by those borders, disputes can be avoided.

 

When a dispute arose between our verbal ancestors who had not yet developed law, they had the option of talking about the dispute. If, after talking (perhaps shouting), they did not engage in physical violence, they had resolved their dispute verbally. People who could resolve their disputes verbally would incur less costs and risks than those who could not and, consequently, would enjoy an advantage in survival and reproduction. However, we know from experience that it is very difficult for two parties to resolve any serious dispute unaided since each party to a dispute tends to distort the facts and engage in special pleading in his own favor. One solution to this problem is to ask a disinterested third-party to hear the dispute and offer an opinion. People who were willing to bring their disputes to a third-party were more likely to resolve their disputes without the cost and risk of violent conflict and enjoyed an advantage in survival and reproduction over those who did not.

I have bolded the second paragraph because it explains very well what I mean when I say "the concept of ownership is inherent to humans".  Animals establish what they see as their own, and humans do the same thing.  Just because someone has claimed something as their own does not mean they have initiated or threatened violence against anyone else.  If I pick an apple off of a tree and then start to eat it, I have not threatened anybody else.  However, if someone else were to come along and take that apple from me, they have used violence.  Now, one objection might be that I could pick the apple and put it aside, and then someone else comes along and takes it.  There was then no violence or threat of violence by the second individual, so there!  But by what right does the second individual have to take that apple?  Why does the second person have a better claim to that apple than the first person?  How is it right that if I take the time to gather food for storage and find shelter for myself that I must now remain constantly vigilant, else the food I have gathered is up for grabs by anybody who can get away with it?  Furthermore, if I pick the apple off of a tree, and then I drop it so that I may climb down safely, is it not mine any more?  It is up for grabs until I can pick it up again?

 

This is why libertarians support the rule of first use.  But this does not mean that the original appropriators of property are necessarily threatening or using violence against anyone.  They are just realizing the golden rule.  "Respect what is mine, and I'll respect what is yours."  Now, it may seem that I am trying to be a slippery fish here on the original appropriation of property.  The thing is, my views have changed a lot over the last few years, and they have continued to change.  I used to be a conservative, then a Rothbardian, but I have not been a Rothbardian for a while now.  Clayton has mentioned in other threads that he considers the NAP to be incomplete but largely suitable for the vast majority of human interaction.  Maybe he is right and maybe he isn't.  My view has been informed by the golden rule for a very long time, and I believe the NAP is about as close to that as anything can be.  But the golden rule is a solid rule as far as I'm concerned when it comes to society.  The idea of a social contract is only partially valid.  The common and original definition of the social contract is that by being a part of society, you agree to surrender your freedoms to the state or the majority.  This, in my opinion, is nonsense.  The only concept of a social contract that I could ever believe to be valid would be the idea that by being a part of society, you agree to the golden rule.  

 

Quite simply, what you are suggesting is against the golden rule.  "People should not have private property" is completely against the golden rule.  If I take the time to find food or make shelter, that is mine.  I will respect the food that you have found and the shelter you have made, and you will respect mine.  If people really could not respect the things that other people own, there would not be any societies today.  We would be living in poverty, if we were even living at all.

 

To summarize: It is not necessarily so that for there to be private property that the original appropriator must have used violence or threatened violence.  Also, I support the NAP because it is a legal realization of the golden rule.  I support the golden rule because I do.  There is no way to reason out logically something like that.  You either take it as a premise or you don't.

 

Third, to address your idea about abolishing private property: As I said, it has to do with the golden rule.  You can either respect my stuff or you don't.  Good luck trying to form a society around the idea that you don't need to respect other people's things.  There's not much else to say about it.  I don't believe it can happen, period.  It's not just even a question of whether it is moral or just.

 

Fourth, I have nothing against jointly owned property, but there is no way that property can be owned by everyone.  It just boils down to the golden rule.

 

Finally, I said in the beginning that many of your points come from a misunderstanding of humans.  As was pointed out earlier, many animals mark their territory and food.  Humans do the same thing.  Naturally, not all humans respect the claims of other humans.  Some just take what they want from others and try to prevent others from gaining access to what they have taken.  But you are asking us to pretend that a society could form without respecting the claims of individuals.  I can see why you dismiss any argument about human nature.  For a society without private property to exist, there would have to be a fundamental shift in human nature - that people would not claim things for themselves, or that people would be okay with others taking the things that they have claimed as their own.  This will not happen.  It is utopian to believe otherwise.

 

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Just to give you one more thing to respond to (unless you'd prefer to just respond to this instead of previous posts):

I think that will work just fine.  Perhaps I do use words rather loosely at times, and should look into cleaning that up.  I will keep it in mind.  I still think I tend to use words as they are used societally, as the only place I get into page long obfuscations on definitions is this site, and nowhere else.  Language is social afterall, and only understood contextually.  

From our conversation, I think that some of your points stem from a certain misunderstanding of humans.  I'll list some of the points you have made as I understand them:

cheekyIdk if they are misunderstanding about humans but ok 

There should not be "private property" - that is, you do not believe it is just that any single person should have the final say on any given piece of propertty

cheekyI was going to say "not really.."

Here's what I believe.  No "single" person CAN have the final say on any given piece of property, it must by its very nature be social (a point we don't disagree on; property is (a specific form of) dispute resolution.) I'm not really getting into whether it is just at this point.  The immorality of property is not in what it is (possession and control, which is necessary), but it in how it is claimed.

That for there to be "private property", the original "owner" must necessarily have been the first person to initiate violence

Or the threat thereof; which is violence in my book.

All property should be "jointly owned property" - and more specifically, it should be considered "owned" by the people who use it

"Should" is a tricky situation.  I do think the outcome of working class aquisition of power will be in the creation of a new type of possession and control, not analogues to private property.  I do think more just and equitable outcomes (yes, "just" is a subjective term) will arise from property being "jointly controlled" by more people, especially those who regularly use it.  I'm not sure I believe that anything "should" happen, other than what does happen tho... but that's a whole different philosophical debate (ethical relativism v absolutism).

I don't think property should be owned at all; that is to say, I don't think there should be proper "property."

Might makes right, and you want this might to be in the hands of the working class.

Might doesn't make right.  That would be ludicrous, and saying that NAZI Germany was right simply because they had the most might at the time.  C'mon, nobody should believe that make actually makes things right

What I believe is that might makes what will happen, how things will be organized, and that this might "should" be in the hands of the working class (more importantly, it probably will be through internal inconsistency of the capitalist mode of production), thereby dissolving that class and all class antagonism with it 

I am going to respond to these points.  I do not believe they are straw men, as they are just paraphrases of things you have said

 Let me know if you believe these are not accurate and in what way they should be tweaked.en

See above. 

First, I would like to talk about the "might makes right" approach to law.  I do not agree with that approach

As seen above, nor do I.  Nevertheless, that it is almost always how it works out.

 That is the approach that forms the basis of statutory law, and in some very important ways I do not feel it really is "law" (it sort of is and it sort of isn't - I'll explain in a bit).  I would like to quote Clayton from his post What Law Is on the definition of law:

Clayton:

Law is the alternative to violent conflict when conflict-avoidance strategies (such as property lines) have failed to avoid conflict. In terms of rights in property, law is the production of new, stipulated property-lines which resolve real conflicts without further violence.

Different systems of law can form, but they do not necessarily have to be a "might makes right" system.  Clayton has explained the origin of law in his post A Praxeological Account of Law, and he has shown (I believe correctly) that the origin of law was not a "might makes right" approach.

I would not be able to respond to this without knowing the historical account of how property actually arose.  This is unfalsiable post-diction, and therefore pseudo-science.  

He used the example of two men having a dispute, and these two men are of roughly equivalent size and weight.  It is dangerous for them to fight because one of them might lose.  This is why they try to settle the dispute verbally.  The reason they try to settle verbally is because neither one has the might to definitely win.  Obviously statutory law has become the dominant form of law in the modern world, but it was not always the case.  Many societies have had at some point (or still do have) common law, which is still a might makes right approach, but it is not centralized law; and customary law, which does not need to be a might makes right approach at all, though it does depend upon the society.  There have been other systems, but I don't feel the need to talk about them.

I mean, I would prefer customary law to an extent as well (obviously, if you are buying, selling, or owning slaves, I see no problem in bringing violence upon you).  It would seem that customary law is actually necessary for their to be cohesive law, and that statutory law is mostly just a function of states trying to legitmize themselves.  

Earlier, I stated that statutory law is sort of law and sort of not law.  Obviously, it is law in the sense that it fulflls the definition of law; it does provide alternatives to settling disputes with further violence.  I also had said earlier in the thread that it is either superfluous or unjust, and it probably makes more sense to say it that way instead.  Let us use the example of slavery in the United States.  Not only was it considered lawful to own slaves, but it was considered lawful to kidnap escaped slaves and return them to their "owners".  I'm not sure much else really needs to be said about this other than the fact that while this was lawful, it was incredibly unjust.  However there were laws in the US at the time that were just (e.g. laws against theft).  But these laws would be superfluous, because they exist in customary law societies.

In short, I do not support a system of "might makes right", as the laws are either superfluous or unjust.

Again, I largely agree with you on the efficacy of customary law, and the coerciveness of statutory law.  My questions would be; "just" according to whom?  And do you think customary law could or would allow for the acquisition of people as property, ie slavery?

Second, I would like to address the point that for there to be "private property", the original owner must have necessarily been the one to initiate violence or the threat thereof.  Again, I would like to quote a passage from A Praxeological Account of Law:

There was a time before law. If we go far enough back in our evolutionary ancestry, we reach a point where our ancestors were not yet verbal. Since the ability to speak and engage in complex, rational argument is a precondition for law, these ancestors could not have had law. At some point, our ancestors acquired the ability to speak. At some later point, law emerged.

 

Of course, even before our ancestors could speak, they could get into disputes. Disputes occur between other animals frequently. Without the ability to speak, there are fewer ways in which to resolve disputes. Usually, dispute resolution between animals involves intimidating displays of force, threats, and violent or even deadly conflict. Disputes are costly and risky so, even in the non-verbal animal kingdom, there are dispute avoidance mechanisms. Birds mark their territory with sticks, dogs with urine, and so on. The behavior of establishing publicly visible borders is important because, as long as others see and abide by those borders, disputes can be avoided.

 

When a dispute arose between our verbal ancestors who had not yet developed law, they had the option of talking about the dispute. If, after talking (perhaps shouting), they did not engage in physical violence, they had resolved their dispute verbally. People who could resolve their disputes verbally would incur less costs and risks than those who could not and, consequently, would enjoy an advantage in survival and reproduction. However, we know from experience that it is very difficult for two parties to resolve any serious dispute unaided since each party to a dispute tends to distort the facts and engage in special pleading in his own favor. One solution to this problem is to ask a disinterested third-party to hear the dispute and offer an opinion. People who were willing to bring their disputes to a third-party were more likely to resolve their disputes without the cost and risk of violent conflict and enjoyed an advantage in survival and reproduction over those who did not.

I have bolded the second paragraph because it explains very well what I mean when I say "the concept of ownership is inherent to humans".  Animals establish what they see as their own, and humans do the same thing. 

 

Again, as does the theif; namely to what you consider "your stuff."  So I say, again, that the claim to possession and control alone is not good enough to be considered property, else the theif's claim is a claim to property.  You're saying the concept of "possession and control" is inherent to humans, which is true, and then conflating possession and control to "property," which is a very specific form of possession and control.

 Just because someone has claimed something as their own does not mean they have initiated or threatened violence against anyone else.

 

It does not, I agree.

 If I pick an apple off of a tree and then start to eat it, I have not threatened anybody else.  However, if someone else were to come along and take that apple from me, they have used violence.

 

Yet in property, it may have been "their" apple, and so, within a property system, you have used violence, by trespassing and theivery.  But, without the respect for property claims, this is ludicrous, is it not?

Therefore, it is easy to see that one can claim possession and control non-violently, ie, you picking the apple.  It is when someone claims "mine" that the threat of violence is necessary.  You can only claim it as "mine" with the claim that you will defend it from being taken.  The choices are:

1.  You claim it as your own, and bring the threat of violence to protect it from being taken.

2. They claim it as theirs, with the threat of violence to protect it.

3. Nobody claims it as anyting other than nature's bounty, you eat the apple, and the guy finds another one.

 

... I guess we could add in 4; one of you just abandons all hope for peace and brings physical violence on the other... 

 Now, one objection might be that I could pick the apple and put it aside, and then someone else comes along and takes it.  There was then no violence or threat of violence by the second individual, so there!  But by what right does the second individual have to take that apple?

 

What "right" did you have to take it?

 Why does the second person have a better claim to that apple than the first person?

 

Good question.  Why does the first person have a better claim than the second?

 How is it right that if I take the time to gather food for storage and find shelter for myself that I must now remain constantly vigilant, else the food I have gathered is up for grabs by anybody who can get away with it?  

Why is it right for you to take more apples than you need, forcing others to go without or take "yours" from you?

 

Furthermore, if I pick the apple off of a tree, and then I drop it so that I may climb down safely, is it not mine any more?  It is up for grabs until I can pick it up again?

 

Why was it "yours" just for picking it?  If it is "yours" just for picking it, wherein does wage labor not expropriate the value of the laborer's productivity?

 

This is why libertarians support the rule of first use.

 

This was my original contention tho; there is no piece of (meaningful) property anywhere on earth that can be actually applied to the first use rule.  For the libertarian society to be as justifiable as claimed we would have to strike down the legality of all current property claims and leave the entire world up for homesteading.  That's why it is often responded, when I bring this up, that "the claimants and their descendants are long dead and so we don't have to worry about that."  Fine, fair enough... but it sure does seem like a post-hoc rationalization for the status quo.

 

 But this does not mean that the original appropriators of property are necessarily threatening or using violence against anyone.  They are just realizing the golden rule.  "Respect what is mine, and I'll respect what is yours."

"Respect what is mine" or... what?  That's been my point the entire time.  

 

 Now, it may seem that I am trying to be a slippery fish here on the original appropriation of property.  The thing is, my views have changed a lot over the last few years, and they have continued to change.  I used to be a conservative, then a Rothbardian, but I have not been a Rothbardian for a while now.  Clayton has mentioned in other threads that he considers the NAP to be incomplete but largely suitable for the vast majority of human interaction.  Maybe he is right and maybe he isn't.  My view has been informed by the golden rule for a very long time, and I believe the NAP is about as close to that as anything can be.  But the golden rule is a solid rule as far as I'm concerned when it comes to society.  The idea of a social contract is only partially valid.  The common and original definition of the social contract is that by being a part of society, you agree to surrender your freedoms to the state or the majority.  This, in my opinion, is nonsense.  The only concept of a social contract that I could ever believe to be valid would be the idea that by being a part of society, you agree to the golden rule.  

 

Quite simply, what you are suggesting is against the golden rule.  "People should not have private property" is completely against the golden rule.  If I take the time to find food or make shelter, that is mine.  I will respect the food that you have found and the shelter you have made, and you will respect mine.  If people really could not respect the things that other people own, there would not be any societies today.  We would be living in poverty, if we were even living at all.

 

Fair enough, but you're talking about something wildly different than modern society.  If we could go back in time to pre-neolithic days, perhaps I would agree with you.. tho probably not.  What you are dealing with today is the violent appropration of all land, across the world, and its aftermath.  There is no "food and shelter you and I have made."  There is only the aftermath of "things our ancestors were coerced and/or compelled to make at the behest of feudal property claimants."  It would be like me going to Bristolville, Ohio and killing everyone in the town, claiming it all as my property and telling you to "respect what is mine and I'll respect what is yours."  It's absurd.

 

To summarize: It is not necessarily so that for there to be private property that the original appropriator must have used violence or threatened violence.  Also, I support the NAP because it is a legal realization of the golden rule.  I support the golden rule because I do.  There is no way to reason out logically something like that.  You either take it as a premise or you don't.

 

I completely agree with the bolded.

 

Third, to address your idea about abolishing private property: As I said, it has to do with the golden rule.  You can either respect my stuff or you don't.

 

I will respect your claim to your toothbrush, not your factory.

 

Good luck trying to form a society around the idea that you don't need to respect other people's things. 

 

Good thing I'm not trying to build a society around that idea (or really "ideas" at all.  I'm trying to establish society around the respect for people).  It all really depends on "what" things are "yours" and "how" you use them, for socialists to determine valid claims.

 

 There's not much else to say about it.  I don't believe it can happen, period.  It's not just even a question of whether it is moral or just.

 

I'd rather prefer to not get into a "can it happen" debate because 1) I'm not arguing for a free-for-all society, but one based on need, not profit, and 2) I don't think ancap can happen (because the ruling class would fight it nearly as hard as they fight socialism.  Sure, they love to use libertarians to get the government out of the way when they need to.  But when it comes to actually being libertarian, they see you guys as a threat).

 

Fourth, I have nothing against jointly owned property, but there is no way that property can be owned by everyone.  It just boils down to the golden rule

 

I agree; there is no way for property to be owned by everyone.  There is a way for possession and control to ultimately lay with the people democratically. 

 

Finally, I said in the beginning that many of your points come from a misunderstanding of humans.

 

I'm not sure you made a good case for your contention tho.

 

 As was pointed out earlier, many animals mark their territory and food.  Humans do the same thing.  Naturally, not all humans respect the claims of other humans.  Some just take what they want from others and try to prevent others from gaining access to what they have taken.

 

See above.

 But you are asking us to pretend that a society could form without respecting the claims of individuals.

 

I am claiming no such thing.

 I can see why you dismiss any argument about human nature.  For a society without private property to exist, there would have to be a fundamental shift in human nature - that people would not claim things for themselves, or that people would be okay with others taking the things that they have claimed as their own.

 

1) For a libertarian society to exist there must be a "fundamental shift" in "human nature."  People would have to stop claiming other people's things as their own and using military means to back up those claims.  I don't really see this happening, it is not in the interests of the ruling class (and really only in the interests of the small business owner and small land owner), so it won't come about through reform.  It is not in the interests of the antagonist class either (the working class), so it wouldn't come about through revolution.  If something is not in the interests of the ruling class, a class with the economic means to bring society to their will, or the antagonistic class... I don't see any means of how to bring it about.

 

2) For a society without private property to exist there would have to be nothing more than a legal means to make possession and control democratically accountable.  Once all possession and control is democratically accountable, there is no longer "property" in the traditional sense of the word.  I see no reason why democratically accountable claims to possession and control does not fit in with your "Golden Rule" other than the whole "mine" part (it's more "I will respect you, if you will respect me).

In States a fresh law is looked upon as a remedy for evil. Instead of themselves altering what is bad, people begin by demanding a law to alter it. ... In short, a law everywhere and for everything!

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Laotzu del Zinn:
What I believe is that might makes what will happen, how things will be organized, and that this might "should" be in the hands of the working class (more importantly, it probably will be through internal inconsistency of the capitalist mode of production), thereby dissolving that class and all class antagonism with it

I thought you weren't a Marxist. Make up your mind.

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Here's what I believe.  No "single" person CAN have the final say on any given piece of property, it must by its very nature be social (a point we don't disagree on; property is (a specific form of) dispute resolution.) I'm not really getting into whether it is just at this point.  The immorality of property is not in what it is (possession and control, which is necessary), but it in how it is claimed.

It is incorrect to state that no single person can have the final say on any given piece of property.  The vast majority of interactions are entirely voluntary and property exchanges hands without conflict.  Sometimes, there are disputes, but many of these are resolved with someone making the final say.  One such example: two children are fighting over a toy.  One of the parents makes a decision as to who gets control and ends the dispute.  The parent here has the final say.

Regardless, an even more specific way of stating what I mean: You believe that it is not just that any single person should have the legal final say on any given piece of property.

Might doesn't make right.  That would be ludicrous, and saying that NAZI Germany was right simply because they had the most might at the time.  C'mon, nobody should believe that make actually makes things right

I agree with this.

What I believe is that might makes what will happen, how things will be organized, and that this might "should" be in the hands of the working class (more importantly, it probably will be through internal inconsistency of the capitalist mode of production), thereby dissolving that class and all class antagonism with it 

To be honest, I don't entirely disagree with this, but I think you are missing something here - what we have today is not capitalism in the sense of free markets but crony capitalism.  A lot of the largest corporations in the world exist or are as large as they are because of their symbiosis with the state.  Without the protections that the government gives them, I suspect that there would be more corporations but smaller.  There would still be Walmarts, but the auto industry and the music industry and the computer industry (especially software) would probably have many more competitors and the giants of these industries would probably be smaller.  I can't prove it except to say that they have retained their size and wealth through aggressive government intervention.

I know that this is not what you are trying to say, but it is my belief that in a free market system, the working class would have more power and the elite class would have less (again, because the elite class retains its power through the state, so without it, they lose most of their power).

I would not be able to respond to this without knowing the historical account of how property actually arose.  This is unfalsiable post-diction, and therefore pseudo-science.  

This is quite the dismissal.  Calling it names really doesn't do much to support your belief.  Look, Clayton put forth a deductive argument to prove his case.  If you want to dismiss his case, then I suggest you show where his premises are false or incomplete, or you show how his argument is invalid.  If you believe you can contribute something to show how he might be wrong, I suggest you post your thoughts on it in those threads and not in this one.

I mean, I would prefer customary law to an extent as well (obviously, if you are buying, selling, or owning slaves, I see no problem in bringing violence upon you).  It would seem that customary law is actually necessary for their to be cohesive law, and that statutory law is mostly just a function of states trying to legitmize themselves.  

I agree with this.

Again, I largely agree with you on the efficacy of customary law, and the coerciveness of statutory law.  My questions would be; "just" according to whom?  And do you think customary law could or would allow for the acquisition of people as property, ie slavery?

What I mean is that statutory law either reflects what customary would be or it goes against it.  Obviously, customary law does not prevent there being unjust laws, but customary law cannot be superfluous in the way that statutory law can be, as customary law is just a reflection of the community instead of the strongest of the community.

Again, as does the theif; namely to what you consider "your stuff."  So I say, again, that the claim to possession and control alone is not good enough to be considered property, else the theif's claim is a claim to property.  You're saying the concept of "possession and control" is inherent to humans, which is true, and then conflating possession and control to "property," which is a very specific form of possession and control.

I am not conflating the two ideas.  The point I am trying to make is that people, like animals, make claims to possession and control, and you are saying that they should not do that.  My point is that this goes against human nature.  Every human claims to be the rightful owner of something, and you are saying that you want a society without this.  I understand that you claim that you are someone who does not claim to be a rightful owner to anything, but I don't believe you.  If I were to take your computer, your clothes, and your home, you would be upset at this.  You can claim you wouldn't, but I just wouldn't believe you.  There really is nothing you can say to convince me otherwise.  If I were to take the food you were going to eat each and every time you were going to eat it, you would eventually claim, "This is mine!  Don't touch it!"  Else you would starve to death.  I mean, if you chose the route of starving to death, then yes, I would believe you.  But then where would that get you?  Dead.

This was my original contention tho; there is no piece of (meaningful) property anywhere on earth that can be actually applied to the first use rule.  For the libertarian society to be as justifiable as claimed we would have to strike down the legality of all current property claims and leave the entire world up for homesteading.  That's why it is often responded, when I bring this up, that "the claimants and their descendants are long dead and so we don't have to worry about that."  Fine, fair enough... but it sure does seem like a post-hoc rationalization for the status quo.

This is incorrect.  If you cannot prove who the property belongs to, then we don't know who it belongs to.  The current owners are the rightful owners.  The only exception is if you can prove that the current owners stole the property from someone else, but you can't specify who.  But if the victims are long dead, and no one knows who they are, then the current owners are the rightful owners (unless of course we know that those particular owners did steal it).  It's not that we don't have to worry about it, it's that we cannot prove who the rightful owners are.  So the property was homesteaded by the current owners.  This is consistent in a libertarian framework, even if you don't like the framework for your own moral reasons.

Fair enough, but you're talking about something wildly different than modern society.  If we could go back in time to pre-neolithic days, perhaps I would agree with you.. tho probably not.  What you are dealing with today is the violent appropration of all land, across the world, and its aftermath.  There is no "food and shelter you and I have made."  There is only the aftermath of "things our ancestors were coerced and/or compelled to make at the behest of feudal property claimants."  It would be like me going to Bristolville, Ohio and killing everyone in the town, claiming it all as my property and telling you to "respect what is mine and I'll respect what is yours."  It's absurd.

To be honest, I'm not sure what you are trying to say.

I will respect your claim to your toothbrush, not your factory.

Why?

1) For a libertarian society to exist there must be a "fundamental shift" in "human nature."  People would have to stop claiming other people's things as their own and using military means to back up those claims.  I don't really see this happening, it is not in the interests of the ruling class (and really only in the interests of the small business owner and small land owner), so it won't come about through reform.  It is not in the interests of the antagonist class either (the working class), so it wouldn't come about through revolution.  If something is not in the interests of the ruling class, a class with the economic means to bring society to their will, or the antagonistic class... I don't see any means of how to bring it about.

This is false.  There is nothing in libertarianism that requires a fundamental shift in human nature.  The NAP is not a moral framework but a legal one.  The vast majority of human interaction is voluntary.  All we want is for the system of law to be consistent with the NAP instead of the statutory double standard that currently exists.  Unless someone is a minarchist, and they have the capacity to doublethink their way into the double standard.

I did not respond to every part of your post, and I hope that this part here will be sufficient.  I think the main idea we disagree on is "just property".  I believe in it (and the first use rule as a good indicator) and you don't.  I consider that the NAP encompasses both individuals and their justly owned property, and you believe that there should not be violence or the threat of violence initiated only against people (though it seems you still have some contradictory views on this, for instance the toothbrush versus the factory).  I think that's all this really boils down to, and neither of us can change the other's mind on the concept of justly owned property.

For any lurkers who might be reading, I suggest they read The Non-Aggression Axiom of Libertarianism by Walter Block and The relation between the non-aggression principle and property rights: a response to Division by Zer0 by Stephan Kinsella.

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It is incorrect to state that no single person can have the final say on any given piece of property.  The vast majority of interactions are entirely voluntary and property exchanges hands without conflict.  Sometimes, there are disputes, but many of these are resolved with someone making the final say.  One such example: two children are fighting over a toy.  One of the parents makes a decision as to who gets control and ends the dispute.  The parent here has the final say.

Regardless, an even more specific way of stating what I mean: You believe that it is not just that any single person should have the legal final say on any given piece of property.

That sounds about right.  When I said "no person CAN have the final say" I was talking about how I can't use my gun that I own to kill you.  Property must be regulated socially.  The decision between the two children and the parent is still a social decision; the other child could have dismissed the parent's ruling.

To be honest, I don't entirely disagree with this, but I think you are missing something here - what we have today is not capitalism in the sense of free markets but crony capitalism.  A lot of the largest corporations in the world exist or are as large as they are because of their symbiosis with the state.  Without the protections that the government gives them, I suspect that there would be more corporations but smaller.  There would still be Walmarts, but the auto industry and the music industry and the computer industry (especially software) would probably have many more competitors and the giants of these industries would probably be smaller.  I can't prove it except to say that they have retained their size and wealth through aggressive government interventionion

I don't actually disagree with this that much.  But I also think without those protections the for-profit system would have collapsed utterly decades ago (admittedly it may have rebuilt itself shortly after).  There's a reason they turn to the state, it's the only way to keep growing and remain profitable; meaning its the only way to fulfill the demands of investors... they also turn to the state to stave off the inevitable collapse caused by overproduction. 

I know that this is not what you are trying to say, but it is my belief that in a free market system, the working class would have more power and the elite class would have less (again, because the elite class retains its power through the state, so without it, they lose most of their power).

I mean, I agree with that.  I guess I just don't see the quasi-statist PDA's as all that different from the state.  I don't think companies without statist worker protection would waste much time in bringing violence upon striking workers (again, not to say workers don't get violent as well).

This is quite the dismissal.  Calling it names really doesn't do much to support your belief.  Look, Clayton put forth a deductive argument to prove his case.  If you want to dismiss his case, then I suggest you show where his premises are false or incomplete, or you show how his argument is invalid.  If you believe you can contribute something to show how he might be wrong, I suggest you post your thoughts on it in those threads and not in this one.

I don't deny his syllogism is well thought out and valid.  Yet, as I tried to say, if his premises don't correspond to reality, his conclusion, no matter how valid, is irrelevant. 

All men are mortal

Socrates is a man

Socrates is mortal.

But what if Socrates is a woman, and not all men are mortal?  That's my point.  I don't know the historical account of how property arose, so I can't "prove" his premises false.  That doesn't mean they are true tho.  I didn't "just call it names."  I described psuedo-science and called it that.

What I mean is that statutory law either reflects what customary would be or it goes against it.  Obviously, customary law does not prevent there being unjust laws, but customary law cannot be superfluous in the way that statutory law can be, as customary law is just a reflection of the community instead of the strongest of the community.

Fair enough.

I am not conflating the two ideas.  The point I am trying to make is that people, like animals, make claims to possession and control, and you are saying that they should not do that

I am not saying that.  I am saying that people shouldn't make claim to a specific legal title to possession and control; that "property" (if we must call it that) should be democratic.

 My point is that this goes against human nature.

It doesn't (if there is such a thing as "human nature.")

 Every human claims to be the rightful owner of something, and you are saying that you want a society without this.

I want a society where the rightful controllers of things are decided communally (democratically).

 I understand that you claim that you are someone who does not claim to be a rightful owner to anything, but I don't believe you.

You don't have to.  We can hang out sometime tho.  

 If I were to take your computer, your clothes, and your home, you would be upset at this

It depends on who is taking it and for what reason.  If you took it to make war with someone, or just to feed your want for more stuff, I would get upset about it.  If you took it because you actually needed it, I would have no problem.

 You can claim you wouldn't, but I just wouldn't believe you.  

That's fine.  It's not as if I can prove it over the internet... it's also not as if people don't make outrageous and wild claims daily on the internet cheeky

There really is nothing you can say to convince me otherwise.  If I were to take the food you were going to eat each and every time you were going to eat it, you would eventually claim, "This is mine!  Don't touch it!"  Else you would starve to death.  I mean, if you chose the route of starving to death, then yes, I would believe you.  But then where would that get you?  Dead.of

It's a good thing, once again, that I am not promoting a society of wanton taking of things by whoever wants it.  I am promoting  a society where decisions regarding goods, resources, and services are decided rationally and democratically.

This is incorrect.  If you cannot prove who the property belongs to, then we don't know who it belongs to.  The current owners are the rightful owners. 

The US Government made a deal with the Nex Perce for their land.  Although they didn't really make it with the Nex Perce, but instead chose one of the tribesman to be its leader, against their own custom of non-binding decision making, and made him sign the title away.  This territory basically comprises most of the Northwest US.  After a long war and exile between the US and the Nez Perce, most of them are dead.  We know who the rightful "owners" of this property should be.

 The only exception is if you can prove that the current owners stole the property from someone else, but you can't specify who.  But if the victims are long dead, and no one knows who they are, then the current owners are the rightful owners (unless of course we know that those particular owners did steal it).  It's not that we don't have to worry about it, it's that we cannot prove who the rightful owners are.  So the property was homesteaded by the current owners.  This is consistent in a libertarian framework, even if you don't like the framework for your own moral reasons.

I don't, because again I could go to Bristol, Ohio and kill everyone, claim the land as my own, and demand you "respect my claim" because you cannot "prove" who the rightful owners should be (assuming I did this in secret, and killed off al the people who knew them as well).  This is even more difficult in the case above where there were not previously established land claims, that land was held communally... which is basically the state of the entire world if you go back far enough.  
I mean if your framework lets this caveat in, there's nothing I can say other than that I disagree.

Why?

Because you need your toothbrush more than anyone else.

This is false.  There is nothing in libertarianism that requires a fundamental shift in human nature.  The NAP is not a moral framework but a legal one.  The vast majority of human interaction is voluntary.  All we want is for the system of law to be consistent with the NAP instead of the statutory double standard that currently exists.  Unless someone is a minarchist, and they have the capacity to doublethink their way into the double standard.

Yes, but I can just aggress against you and set up a state anyway... and this is certainly what usually happens (for example "anarchist" [lulz] Iceland, or the Ukraine Free Territory, or the Paris Commune.  How long do you think this Zapatista movement will last before some statist comes in with guns and crushes the whole thing?

That's why imo, "anarchism" implies far more than non-statism and the NAP.  It's really more about the lack of leaders; an-archy.

I did not respond to every part of your post, and I hope that this part here will be sufficient.  I think the main idea we disagree on is "just property".  I believe in it (and the first use rule as a good indicator) and you don't.  I consider that the NAP encompasses both individuals and their justly owned property, and you believe that there should not be violence or the threat of violence initiated only against people (though it seems you still have some contradictory views on this, for instance the toothbrush versus the factory).  I think that's all this really boils down to, and neither of us can change the other's mind on the concept of justly owned property.ed 

I really never expected to cheeky

For any lurkers who might be reading, I suggest they read The Non-Aggression Axiom of Libertarianism by Walter Block and The relation between the non-aggression principle and property rights: a response to Division by Zer0 by Stephan Kinsella.

This has nothing to do with you but.. when I play to the lurkers I get accused of being a troll sad

In States a fresh law is looked upon as a remedy for evil. Instead of themselves altering what is bad, people begin by demanding a law to alter it. ... In short, a law everywhere and for everything!

~Peter Kropotkin

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I don't actually disagree with this that much.  But I also think without those protections the for-profit system would have collapsed utterly decades ago (admittedly it may have rebuilt itself shortly after).  There's a reason they turn to the state, it's the only way to keep growing and remain profitable; meaning its the only way to fulfill the demands of investors... they also turn to the state to stave off the inevitable collapse caused by overproduction. 

Well, this is obviously false.  There are many companies that do grow and remain profitable without resorting to the violent monopoly of the state.  And this overproduction is caused by the state, not the free market.

I mean, I agree with that.  I guess I just don't see the quasi-statist PDA's as all that different from the state.  I don't think companies without statist worker protection would waste much time in bringing violence upon striking workers (again, not to say workers don't get violent as well).

I'm sorry, what?  You can't really be saying that you are against private security?  You might want to rephrase this to make it clearer.

I don't deny his syllogism is well thought out and valid.  Yet, as I tried to say, if his premises don't correspond to reality, his conclusion, no matter how valid, is irrelevant. 

Which premises don't correspond to reality?

But what if Socrates is a woman, and not all men are mortal?  That's my point.  I don't know the historical account of how property arose, so I can't "prove" his premises false.  That doesn't mean they are true tho.  I didn't "just call it names."  I described psuedo-science and called it that.

Again, which premises are false?  You have previously granted that private property arises from dispute resolution.  He lays a solid case for how dispute resolution began.  That's what his essay is about, dispute resolution.  So, if you believe that there is something false or incomplete about his premises, it should be pretty easy to point to where.  Quite simply, you could provide another way dispute resolution could have began, and thus an alternate origin of property.

But yes, I would say calling it pseudo-science and postdiction as name calling.  There is nothing unscientific about deductive reasoning, and it is certainly not postdiction.

I am not saying that.  I am saying that people shouldn't make claim to a specific legal title to possession and control; that "property" (if we must call it that) should be democratic.

This is what I'm saying is against human nature.  Everyone forms attachments to certain things.  Maybe not everything, but certain things.  Even the homeless get attached to their belongings, and they protect what they claim is theirs, even when the state won't.  What you are saying is that people should not make claims to be the rightful owner of certain things, and I'm saying that you are asking everyone to deny human nature.

It doesn't (if there is such a thing as "human nature.")

Sure there is human nature.  One obvious aspect of it is human action.  Or that everyone acts in their own self-interest.  Not what others think their self-interest ought to be, but what they themselves think it should be.

I want a society where the rightful controllers of things are decided communally (democratically).

Of course, not only do I disagree with this morally, but this is of course subject to the calculation problem.  Any society based on this would end in abject poverty, and I would want no part of it.

It depends on who is taking it and for what reason.  If you took it to make war with someone, or just to feed your want for more stuff, I would get upset about it.  If you took it because you actually needed it, I would have no problem.

This is ultimately a utilitarian argument, and there is no way to compare utils between different people.  This is an arbitrary system.

That's fine.  It's not as if I can prove it over the internet... it's also not as if people don't make outrageous and wild claims daily on the internet cheeky

Well, I consider it about as close to the action axiom as one could get.  Obviously, to deny the action axiom is to do a performative contradiction.  It's not quite the same here, hence the "about as close to the action axiom as one could get."  Ultimately, if you really believed in no just private property, people could take from you until you starve to death.  So, while there is no perfomative contradiction, you would be dead.  And what good does that do you?

It's a good thing, once again, that I am not promoting a society of wanton taking of things by whoever wants it.  I am promoting  a society where decisions regarding goods, resources, and services are decided rationally and democratically.

Utilitarianism is ultimately arbitrary.  You cannot prove that it is or is not wanton taking of things by such a standard.  Of course, since I am not a supporter of utilitarianism, I can make such a claim laugh

The US Government made a deal with the Nex Perce for their land.  Although they didn't really make it with the Nex Perce, but instead chose one of the tribesman to be its leader, against their own custom of non-binding decision making, and made him sign the title away.  This territory basically comprises most of the Northwest US.  After a long war and exile between the US and the Nez Perce, most of them are dead.  We know who the rightful "owners" of this property should be.

If you can prove who they are, then you know who the rightful owners are.  If you cannot, then you do not actually know.  This has to do with both the burden of proof and the standard of proof.  If you can't prove it, then you don't actually know it.  You just take it on faith.  In this particular scenario, you would not only have to find the exact descendants, but also the specific areas of land that they claimed to have owned.  You may be able to prove who the rightful owners are, but I seriously doubt you can prove what they rightfully own.  You need both.

I don't, because again I could go to Bristol, Ohio and kill everyone, claim the land as my own, and demand you "respect my claim" because you cannot "prove" who the rightful owners should be (assuming I did this in secret, and killed off al the people who knew them as well).  This is even more difficult in the case above where there were not previously established land claims, that land was held communally... which is basically the state of the entire world if you go back far enough.  
I mean if your framework lets this caveat in, there's nothing I can say other than that I disagree.

Do you understand what the burden of proof is and what the standards of proof are?  If you kill everyone off in secret, how is anyone going to know that it was you who did this?  There is no caveat.  If no one can prove it, then no one can know.  If no one can know, then how are they supposed to be aware of the problem?  This is not a failure of libertarianism but a failure of imperfect knowledge.

Because you need your toothbrush more than anyone else.

Do I?  How do you know?  Why doesn't someone else need it more than me?

Yes, but I can just aggress against you and set up a state anyway... and this is certainly what usually happens (for example "anarchist" [lulz] Iceland, or the Ukraine Free Territory, or the Paris Commune.  How long do you think this Zapatista movement will last before some statist comes in with guns and crushes the whole thing?

Who knows?  But the same can be said of any society, statist or otherwise.  There is always the possibility of an outside invader coming in a taking over.  This does not prove that libertarianism requires a fundamental shift in human nature, which it does not.

That's why imo, "anarchism" implies far more than non-statism and the NAP.  It's really more about the lack of leaders; an-archy.

Anarchism is about a lack of rulers, not a lack of leaders.  Anti-statism and the NAP are congruent with anarchy.

This has nothing to do with you but.. when I play to the lurkers I get accused of being a troll sad

I'm not playing to the lurkers.  If there are any lurkers who are at all interested in this subject, I believe they might find those two articles interesting and worth while to read.

I really never expected to cheeky

Neither did I.  We just have very different concepts of justice,morality, and just property.  There is no logic that can really change those beliefs for either of us.  It's something you either believe in or don't.  The best we can do here is to learn how to clarify our beliefs.  

 

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Fwiw, the price of most factors of production are set by the costs of production. Check out this post where I compare post-Keynesian fixprice theory and Böhm-Bawerk's cost of production theory of prices.  Basically, according to Böhm-Bawerk the prices of manufactured products, under the conditions that the means of production can go towards the production of various good, will be determined by the costs of production.  This isn't the same as the classical theory of value, but an application of an advanced theory of the imputation of value.  Explained,

His intentions were to solve why many prices are set below the marginal utility the buyer ascribes to the good; i.e. why the marginal utility of the buyer may not be directly relevant to the price of these goods (although, the value of the means of production is derived from the value ascribed to the final good — this is an application of Menger’s law of imputation).  Rather than a straight cost plus mark-up theory, Böhm-Bawerk posits that it is the marginal utility of the means of production that govern the prices of the output good (as long as these means of production have substitute products, since the value of the former is derived from the least valuable substitute).

This is the example Böhm-Bawerk gives (more-or-less): imagine group of means of production G2, which can produce final products A, B, and C (with marginal utilities of 100, 110, and 120, respectively).  The loss of the marginal group G2 is equal to the marginal utility of producing the additional unit of A, or the lowest alternative form of output.  This is because the manufacturer, upon the loss of G2, can transfer the loss in the form of one less unit of A, and therefore maintain intact the production of marginal units B, and C.  In less roundabout terms, this means that the value of G2 is imputed from the value of A.  Since the costs of G2 are based on the value of A, not of the more highly valued B or C, this leads to output prices for B and C that have a feasible minimum well below what their cost would have been had their value been imputed from B or C (i.e. the idea that increased competition will tend to reduce prices towards their costs of production).

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Well, this is obviously false.  There are many companies that do grow and remain profitable without resorting to the violent monopoly of the state.  And this overproduction is caused by the state, not the free market.

Companies fail all the time, that's overproduction.  ABCT doesn't really say it's necessarily "central" banks which f the money supply, just that central banks, unlike regular banks, make it harder for the economy to recover.  I don't know of any serious theorists who suggest recession is not inherent to the system.

Yes, there are many companies that grow w/o the state.  Are there enough to maintain market demand?

I'm sorry, what?  You can't really be saying that you are against private security?  You might want to rephrase this to make it clearer.

I've not really seen too many good things come from mercenaries, historically, if that's what you're asking.  I mean, socialist community action (policing) could be considered "private security" if its non statist, so I wouldnt be able to say Im against private security, in that sense.

Which premises don't correspond to reality?

Again, I don't have the knowledge to say if any of them do.  I'm not sure he sourced it himself tho, so I'm not sure he knows which of his premises correspond to actual reality (not theoretical reality).

Again, which premises are false?  You have previously granted that private property arises from dispute resolution.  He lays a solid case for how dispute resolution began.  That's what his essay is about, dispute resolution.  So, if you believe that there is something false or incomplete about his premises, it should be pretty easy to point to where.  Quite simply, you could provide another way dispute resolution could have began, and thus an alternate origin of property.

I am in the process of researching the early rise of property and states.  I'll get back to you when I find the data.

But yes, I would say calling it pseudo-science and postdiction as name calling.  There is nothing unscientific about deductive reasoning, and it is certainly not postdiction.

There is something pseudo-science about deducing from unverified premises tho.  I didn't mean to name call.  Let's just say I have no reason to believe it, unless you can source the empirical accuracy of your claims.

This is what I'm saying is against human nature.  Everyone forms attachments to certain things.  Maybe not everything, but certain things.  Even the homeless get attached to their belongings, and they protect what they claim is theirs, even when the state won't.  What you are saying is that people should not make claims to be the rightful owner of certain things, and I'm saying that you are asking everyone to deny human nature.

Yes, everyone claims they have a right to their things.  And everyone claims there is some thing you're not allowed to use your things for, or some things you don't have a right to claim.  Claiming property is every bit a part of human nature as regulating property, because humans (and therefore property) are evolutionarily a social creature.

Human "nature" is not a fixed thing.  Not many serious scholars even use the term in this day and age.  (Not to mention that for most of our history, hundreds of thousands of years, there was no formal concept of property, other than communal property).

Sure there is human nature.  One obvious aspect of it is human action.  Or that everyone acts in their own self-interest.  Not what others think their self-interest ought to be, but what they themselves think it should be.

Well that's a patently untrue claim.  Unless you want to claim when my mother used to make me clean the house I obviously thought cleaning the house was good for me, because I ended up doing it (or maybe that I thot not being in trouble was good for me).

Of course, not only do I disagree with this morally, but this is of course subject to the calculation problem.  Any society based on this would end in abject poverty, and I would want no part of it.

Ya, well, the calculation "problem" is a straw man, so...

This is ultimately a utilitarian argument, and there is no way to compare utils between different people.  This is an arbitrary system.

All systems are arbitrary systems.

Well, I consider it about as close to the action axiom as one could get.  Obviously, to deny the action axiom is to do a performative contradiction.  It's not quite the same here, hence the "about as close to the action axiom as one could get."  Ultimately, if you really believed in no just private property, people could take from you until you starve to death.  So, while there is no perfomative contradiction, you would be dead.  And what good does that do you.

How many times can I explain that you're straw manning me?  I don't believe in willy nilly taking of things.  I believe in democratically deciding to fulfill needs and demand.

Utilitarianism is ultimately arbitrary.  You cannot prove that it is or is not wanton taking of things by such a standard.  Of course, since I am not a supporter of utilitarianism, I can make such a claim laugh

Society must by necessity be utilitarian.  No matter how much it matches up to ethics and morals, if it's not working for people they will not accept it.

If you can prove who they are, then you know who the rightful owners are.  If you cannot, then you do not actually know.  This has to do with both the burden of proof and the standard of proof.  If you can't prove it, then you don't actually know it.  You just take it on faith.  In this particular scenario, you would not only have to find the exact descendants, but also the specific areas of land that they claimed to have owned.  You may be able to prove who the rightful owners are, but I seriously doubt you can prove what they rightfully own.  You need both.

That's the point, they didn't claim specific areas of land as individuals.  They had a "home territory" and a "winter territory."  We should just overlook this because there too small of a minority to make a big fuss?

Do you understand what the burden of proof is and what the standards of proof are?  If you kill everyone off in secret, how is anyone going to know that it was you who did this?  There is no caveat.  If no one can prove it, then no one can know.  If no one can know, then how are they supposed to be aware of the problem?  This is not a failure of libertarianism but a failure of imperfect knowledge.

It's just to illucidate that the profit system utlimately doesn't care how you got your capital, just that you have it.

Do I?  How do you know?  Why doesn't someone else need it more than me?

Germs.

Who knows?  But the same can be said of any society, statist or otherwise.  There is always the possibility of an outside invader coming in a taking over.  This does not prove that libertarianism requires a fundamental shift in human nature, which it does not.

What it suggests is that there can not be national anarchism.  Anarchism must result from a worldwide universal shift in relations to power. (Not that you think there could have been, sry)

Neither did I.  We just have very different concepts of justice,morality, and just property.  There is no logic that can really change those beliefs for either of us.  It's something you either believe in or don't.  The best we can do here is to learn how to clarify our beliefs.  

 

Word. cheeky

In States a fresh law is looked upon as a remedy for evil. Instead of themselves altering what is bad, people begin by demanding a law to alter it. ... In short, a law everywhere and for everything!

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Companies fail all the time, that's overproduction.  ABCT doesn't really say it's necessarily "central" banks which f the money supply, just that central banks, unlike regular banks, make it harder for the economy to recover.  I don't know of any serious theorists who suggest recession is not inherent to the system.

It seemed like you were referring to a nationwide economic overproduction, and not the profit and loss motive.

Yes, there are many companies that grow w/o the state.  Are there enough to maintain market demand?

Maintain market demand for what?  Even with the state sucking the life out of the economy, there is still market demand.

I've not really seen too many good things come from mercenaries, historically, if that's what you're asking.  I mean, socialist community action (policing) could be considered "private security" if its non statist, so I wouldnt be able to say Im against private security, in that sense.

Quite simply, someone has to police.  There has to be a market in law and the services that enforce it.  People do have disputes.  There must be a way for those disputes to be resolved.  Police are just one aspect of the market in law, and they are a necessary aspect of it.  Libertarians just call the police in an ancap society PDA's to establish a difference between ancap police and statist police.

Again, I don't have the knowledge to say if any of them do.  I'm not sure he sourced it himself tho, so I'm not sure he knows which of his premises correspond to actual reality (not theoretical reality).

You are dodging here.  Please provide which premises you have even the slightest doubt about whether they correspond to reality or not.

I am in the process of researching the early rise of property and states.  I'll get back to you when I find the data.

Okay, but do you believe there is an alternative to dispute resolution (i.e. law) for private property to arise?

There is something pseudo-science about deducing from unverified premises tho.  I didn't mean to name call.  Let's just say I have no reason to believe it, unless you can source the empirical accuracy of your claims.

Look, deductive logic is not pseudoscience.  Math is not pseudoscience.  Whether or not logic and math are sciences is up for debate, but they do not meet the criteria for pseudoscience.  You can doubt things all you want.  But seeing as you have stated that his argument is valid, you need to point to which premises you have doubts about.  I don't want a generic "oh it's all his premises".  Just name even one.

Yes, everyone claims they have a right to their things.  And everyone claims there is some thing you're not allowed to use your things for, or some things you don't have a right to claim.  Claiming property is every bit a part of human nature as regulating property, because humans (and therefore property) are evolutionarily a social creature.

I hope that you can now see the folly of trying to create a system based on denying everyone a claim to something that they own.

Human "nature" is not a fixed thing.  Not many serious scholars even use the term in this day and age.

There is no need for most serious scholars to bring up human nature, because for most things it is irrelevant.  But if "serious" economic scholars want to deny the action axiom, then they really aren't that "serious".  

(Not to mention that for most of our history, hundreds of thousands of years, there was no formal concept of property, other than communal property).

Speaking of unverifiable claims, that's a good one.  So why can you make these claims, but heaven forbid Clayton make claims?

Well that's a patently untrue claim.  Unless you want to claim when my mother used to make me clean the house I obviously thought cleaning the house was good for me, because I ended up doing it (or maybe that I thot not being in trouble was good for me).

How long have you been on these forums and you have no idea what acting in one's own self-interest means?  When you act, you are demonstrating your preference for that choice above all other possibilites.  You had a choice when your mother made you clean the house.  You could have refused.  You chose to clean the house because it was in your self-interest to do so.  You may not have liked cleaning the house, but this in no way contradicts what I said.

Ya, well, the calculation "problem" is a straw man, so...

Not really, so...

All systems are arbitrary systems.

No kidding.  But this in no way addresses the manner in which utilitarianism is arbitrary.  There is no way to know who "needs" what more.  It is arbitrary to say who "needs" what more than someone else.  Nice dodge.

How many times can I explain that you're straw manning me?  I don't believe in willy nilly taking of things.  I believe in democratically deciding to fulfill needs and demand.

Ah yes, democracy, the tyranny of the majority.  Please explain how democratically deciding something is not willy nilly.

Society must by necessity be utilitarian.  No matter how much it matches up to ethics and morals, if it's not working for people they will not accept it.

What do you mean by "working for people"?  Obviously, many slaves did in fact accept their being a slave, as most did not try to escape.  Was slavery "working" for them?  And exactly is society by necessity utilitarian?  How did Nazi Germany maximize happiness for people over the US?

That's the point, they didn't claim specific areas of land as individuals.  They had a "home territory" and a "winter territory."  We should just overlook this because there too small of a minority to make a big fuss?

There is no need to overlook this point. People claim winter and summer houses now.  But if the descenants don't have specific areas of land that they can point to now and say, "That was definitely our ancestors," then you cannot prove that they are the rightful owners.  Libertarianism only requires that they prove who the rightful owners are and what they are the rightful owners of.

It's just to illucidate that the profit system utlimately doesn't care how you got your capital, just that you have it.

But this is not what you were talking about.  You were saying that specifically in a free market system, that one could go murdering secretly and not be punished.  But that is the case with any system.  If you can't prove who did the murdering, then you don't know who did the murdering.  You have illucidated nothing.

Germs.

So what?  What about the man that doesn't care about germs but does care about brushing his teeth?  Who are you to decide that "germs" trumph his wants and needs?

What it suggests is that there can not be national anarchism.  Anarchism must result from a worldwide universal shift in relations to power. (Not that you think there could have been, sry)

Well that isn't true.  You can have a rulerless society without the entire world being rulerless.  

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There was a time before law. If we go far enough back in our evolutionary ancestry, we reach a point where our ancestors were not yet verbal. Since the ability to speak and engage in complex, rational argument is a precondition for law, these ancestors could not have had law. At some point, our ancestors acquired the ability to speak. At some later point, law emerged.

 

Of course, even before our ancestors could speak, they could get into disputes. Disputes occur between other animals frequently. Without the ability to speak, there are fewer ways in which to resolve disputes. Usually, dispute resolution between animals involves intimidating displays of force, threats, and violent or even deadly conflict. Disputes are costly and risky so, even in the non-verbal animal kingdom, there are dispute avoidance mechanisms. Birds mark their territory with sticks, dogs with urine, and so on. The behavior of establishing publicly visible borders is important because, as long as others see and abide by those borders, disputes can be avoided.

 

When a dispute arose between our verbal ancestors who had not yet developed law, they had the option of talking about the dispute. If, after talking (perhaps shouting), they did not engage in physical violence, they had resolved their dispute verbally. People who could resolve their disputes verbally would incur less costs and risks than those who could not and, consequently, would enjoy an advantage in survival and reproduction. However, we know from experience that it is very difficult for two parties to resolve any serious dispute unaided since each party to a dispute tends to distort the facts and engage in special pleading in his own favor. One solution to this problem is to ask a disinterested third-party to hear the dispute and offer an opinion. People who were willing to bring their disputes to a third-party were more likely to resolve their disputes without the cost and risk of violent conflict and enjoyed an advantage in survival and reproduction over those who did not.

 

By the time of the earliest written history, law had already emerged – sometime between the first verbal arguments and the dawn of human history. Governments, too, had already emerged by the dawn of human history. Because most people identify “law” with national, statutory law, there is a tendency to presume that law emerged alongside or even after government emerged. But we can be confident that law emerged before government did because not all societies had or have government but all societies have law[2].

 

Hence, law is temporally antecedent to government. This is an important point because it means that it is possible to have law without government, a point which, it seems, most people today do not believe to be true. More importantly, if law is antecedent to government, then when governments emerged on the scene, they emerged in a pre-existing legal context. Today, we tend to identify dispute-resolution and the creation of law with government courts and legislation.

Something important happened between the time when law first emerged and the time of the advent of government. Prior to the emergence of government, disputes were resolved between disputants, possibly with the assistance of a third-party. Family relations and tribal or clan customs likely played a dominant role in the nature of law at the time. Law consisted of a body of norms which had emerged from use as effective rules for the final settlement of disputes without further conflict. The particular features or attributes of specific law systems are not as important as the general character of law – emergent and voluntary. Law was the alternative to violent conflict so participation in law was not coercive. It was simply an alternative to outright violent confrontation.

 

After the emergence of government, the character of law changed. Law not only emerged through the voluntary settlement of disputes, it was also dictated by governments. Participation in law was either required or prohibited in many instances. Prosecution eventually became a subsidized profession. I will argue that dictations fail to meet the criterion of being law since they do not emerge from the resolution of disputes. The difference applies to whether one should follow a law out of conscience or merely prudence. Decent people do not murder one another or wantonly pillage each other’s houses not only because it is illegal to do so but because it is simply immoral.

 

All of this can be empirically verified.  Clayton makes no attempt to do so.  Even his footnote just links to him further defining his point, not sourcing it.

 

If I’m living in a very primitive society and I get into an argument with one of my fellow men, what happens? There are no judges and may not even be a chief we can appeal to. So what do we do? One option is to fight. But if my opponent is much bigger than me, I will almost certainly defer to him rather than fight him. If I am much bigger than my opponent, I will gladly fight him and probably win. But if you take any two men at random, they will be about the same size, strength and ferocity with high probability because most humans are close to the average. I will probably be about as afraid of the person I am in a dispute with as he is of me. We each are going to be wary of the other.

 

Since we’re human, we can do something that other animals can’t: we can speak and reason. It might consist of a mix of shouting and posturing with reason but that is much better than getting my skull bashed in over whatever it was we were arguing about. If we resolve our dispute without further violence, then we have succeeded in a kind of cooperative voluntary exchange. We both agreed together to exchange our present circumstances – fight/standoff – for a better set of circumstances – bargained settlement. I would rather give up a little of my sustenance to avoid the uncertainty and risk of being involved in a man-to-man battle where I might get to keep everything or I might just lose everything.

 

This, again, can be verified.  Is this how forager societies function?  My limited knowledge tells me that if people got into unsettleable disputes like this, that the people just left the band and moved in with another.  And since he says this is a "crucial point" it means that if he is wrong about this, a large chunk of his thoery falls flat on its face.

 

 Other, more sophisticated social structures – such as the division-of-labor and specialization in the production of security – must emerge before the bully problem can be solved

 

Did forager societies have a bully problem?  Again, this is something that can be verified.

 

Hence, property rights emerge from the resolution of disputes about who owns what and the normative content of property rights is filled out by the same process of discovery through trial-and-error as any other law.

 

This could hypothetically be verified too.  Did property "rights" emerge from dispute resolution, or did they emerge from armies making claims to territory?

 

Did statutory law emerge before customary law?  Can we say there was "law" before writing?

 

 

In States a fresh law is looked upon as a remedy for evil. Instead of themselves altering what is bad, people begin by demanding a law to alter it. ... In short, a law everywhere and for everything!

~Peter Kropotkin

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The socialist calculation debate surely wasn't considered a strawman by all the socialists who were forced to change their argument after Mises' 1920 publication!

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All of this can be empirically verified.  Clayton makes no attempt to do so.  Even his footnote just links to him further defining his point, not sourcing it.

I recall asking you for specific premises.  Since you quoted generally, which is something I asked for you to not do:

  • Are you saying that there was never a time before law?
  • Are you saying that it is false that "[i]f we go far enough back in our evolutionary ancestry, we reach a point where our ancestors were not yet verbal"?
  • Are you saying that it is false that "[s]ince the ability to speak and engage in complex, rational argument is a precondition for law, these ancestors could not have had law"?
  • Are you saying that it is false that "[a]t some point, our ancestors acquired the ability to speak. At some later point, law emerged"?
  • Are you saying that it is false that "even before our ancestors could speak, they could get into disputes"?
  • Are you saying that it is false that "[d]isputes occur between other animals frequently"?

Okay, that started to get into the second paragraph that you quoted, but I think you get the idea.  So, could you please actually cite a specific premise that you take issue with?  Those premises there are obviously true, imho.  But, you see, you quoted generally instead of specifically, so that leads me to believe that you take issue with these premises.  I hope you can see how foolish that would be.

This, again, can be verified.  Is this how forager societies function?  My limited knowledge tells me that if people got into unsettleable disputes like this, that the people just left the band and moved in with another.  And since he says this is a "crucial point" it means that if he is wrong about this, a large chunk of his thoery falls flat on its face.

You're right, you do have limited knowledge.  Are you telling me that when people got into disputes, that instead of fighting or dropping the dispute they would just leave and form other groups each and every time?  Did these people never fight and kill each other?  Clayton's point is that people would resolve these disputes often enough with bargained settlement, instead of all or nothing.  He did not say each and every time, which is the statement you just made as a rebuttal - a statement that is obviously false.  So, no, you have failed to demonstrate how a large chunk of his theory falls flat on his face.

And if you would like a non-human example, look at wolves.  They settle disputes without the beta or omega wolves going into exile and joining other packs.

Did forager societies have a bully problem?  Again, this is something that can be verified.

Are you saying that hunter-gatherer societies did not have the bully problem ever?  How are the weaker people in the h/g society supposed to stand up to the bullies?  His point is that people will have to work together to do this, something that might be referred to as the "specialization in the production of security".  

This could hypothetically be verified too.  Did property "rights" emerge from dispute resolution, or did they emerge from armies making claims to territory?

Just what, exactly, do you think dispute resolution is?  Armies taking over is one method of dispute resolution.  The group in charge is the one resolving the disputes.  We call that statutory law, something I thought we had already discussed.  It is not a method of dispute resolution that I support.  So, yes, property rights emerge from dispute resolution.  I'm still waiting for your rebuttal to that claim.

Did statutory law emerge before customary law?

I'm not sure there's a way to know one way or the other.  I would think it depends upon the bully problem.  If there was a bully, then it was statutory law.  If there wasn't originally a bully, then it was customary.  So, I imagine it would depend upon the specific society, though I imagine that it was largely customary.

Can we say there was "law" before writing?

Yes, obviously.  Ever hear of oral tradition?  Or oral law?  Are you saying that people didn't resolve disputes until after the invention of writing?  What kind of claim is that?

I noticed that you have ignored my points about the arbitrariness of utilitarianism.  Shall I take that as an implicit concession?

EDIT: Fixed a misquote of Clayton on my part.

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I didn't respond to your earlier post because I didn't respond yet.  That's all.  I wanted to tackle this issue first.

Are you saying that there was never a time before law?

I'm saying we can verify if there was.

Are you saying that it is false that "[i]f we go far enough back in our evolutionary ancestry, we reach a point where our ancestors were not yet verbal"?

I'm saying we can verify...

Are you saying that it is false that "[s]ince the ability to speak and engage in complex, rational argument is a precondition for law, these ancestors could not have had law"?

Verify.. source, etc

Are you saying that it is false that "[a]t some point, our ancestors acquired the ability to speak. At some later point, law emerged"?

Source, verifty, etc

Are you saying that it is false that "even before our ancestors could speak, they could get into disputes

Source, verify, etc

Are you saying that it is false that "[d]isputes occur between other animals frequently"

Source, verify, etc.  How hard is it to understand?  

Okay, that started to get into the second paragraph that you quoted, but I think you get the idea.  So, could you please actually cite a specific premise that you take issue with?  Those premises there are obviously true, imho.  But, you see, you quoted generally instead of specifically, so that leads me to believe that you take issue with these premises.  I hope you can see how foolish that would be.

I'm taking issue with the idea that we should just make claims without verifying them, and then build a social system off that. 

You're right, you do have limited knowledge.I 

Ya, I did say that.  So why did you say this?  Is this supposed to be anything more than a personal attack; ie, "you're stupid?"

 Are you telling me that when people got into disputes, that instead of fighting or dropping the dispute they would just leave and form other groups each and every time?

I'm saying this often seems to be the case.  But what I'm really saying is that we can actually verify this claim.

 Did these people never fight and kill each other?  Clayton's point is that people would resolve these disputes often enough with bargained settlement, instead of all or nothing.  He did not say each and every time, which is the statement you just made as a rebuttal - a statement that is obviously false.  So, no, you have failed to demonstrate how a large chunk of his theory falls flat on his face.

I never claimed to demonstrate that it did.  I said we can verify his premises and see if it does.  Why is this so hard to understand?

And if you would like a non-human example, look at wolves.  They settle disputes without the beta or omega wolves going into exile and joining other packs.

Source (I'm sure they do. I'm just reiterrating my point that I have no reason to believe someone that doesn't source his arguments).

Are you saying that hunter-gatherer societies did not have the bully problem ever?  How are the weaker people in the h/g society supposed to stand up to the bullies?  His point is that people will have to work together to do this, something that might be referred to as the "specialization in the production of security".  

Show me evidence they did have a bully problem.

Just what, exactly, do you think dispute resolution is?  Armies taking over is one method of dispute resolution.  The group in charge is the one resolving the disputes.  We call that statutory law, something I thought we had already discussed.  It is not a method of dispute resolution that I support.  So, yes, property rights emerge from dispute resolution.  I'm still waiting for your rebuttal to that claim

Fine.  The wholesale slaughter of Canaan made Isreal the property of the Jews, and everyone should have respected their claim.

I'm not sure there's a way to know one way or the other.  I would think it depends upon the bully problem.  If there was a bully, then it was statutory law.  If there wasn't originally a bully, then it was customary.  So, I imagine it would depend upon the specific society, though I imagine that it was largely customary

Source it.  Show me evidence.  Assume I agree with you, I just want evidence.  

Yes, obviously.  Ever hear of oral tradition?  Or oral law?  Are you saying that people didn't resolve disputes until after the invention of writing?  What kind of claim is that

Is dispute resolution law?  Or is it, like property, a specific type of dispute resolution.  Does it help anything to say that wolves alpha posturing is a form of law?

I noticed that you have ignored my points about the arbitrariness of utilitarianism.  Shall I take that as an implicit concession?

You can take anything however you want.  Why does everybody here always want to "win the debate?"

In States a fresh law is looked upon as a remedy for evil. Instead of themselves altering what is bad, people begin by demanding a law to alter it. ... In short, a law everywhere and for everything!

~Peter Kropotkin

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gotlucky replied on Thu, May 10 2012 10:42 PM

I repeat:

Are you saying that there was never a time before law?

In other words, are you saying that homo sapiens evolved with law already in place?

Are you saying that it is false that "[i]f we go far enough back in our evolutionary ancestry, we reach a point where our ancestors were not yet verbal"?

In other words, are you saying that homo sapiens evolved with language already in place?

Are you saying that it is false that "[s]ince the ability to speak and engage in complex, rational argument is a precondition for law, these ancestors could not have had law"?

In other words, are you saying that homo sapiens evolved with law already in place?

Are you saying that it is false that "[a]t some point, our ancestors acquired the ability to speak. At some later point, law emerged"?

In other words, are you saying that our ancestors evolved with both language in law already existing?

Are you saying that it is false that "even before our ancestors could speak, they could get into disputes

In other words, are you saying that our ancestors were unable to have disputes before language?

Are you saying that it is false that "[d]isputes occur between other animals frequently"

Perhaps you are just trolling me.  Are you really saying that disputes don't occur between other animals?  Really?  Wolves don't have disputes?  Bonobos don't have disputes?  You even brought up bonobos earlier in the thread, because of the way they commonly resolve their disputes...it seems like you are trolling here.

I'm taking issue with the idea that we should just make claims without verifying them, and then build a social system off that. 

Many of his claims are true with easy observation, such as disputes occuring between other animals.  Many of his claims are logically true - in other words, there is no other logical possibility.

An example: homo sapiens did not evolve with language already existing.  It had to be developed socially.  When you cast doubt upon his premise, you are saying that it is logically possible for language to have been created the very same moment the first homo sapien was born.

Ya, I did say that.  So why did you say this?  Is this supposed to be anything more than a personal attack; ie, "you're stupid?"

No.  It is supposed to mean you have very limited knowledge, because the claim that followed your statement was obviously false.  You made a categorical statement that was not true.  

I'm saying this often seems to be the case.  But what I'm really saying is that we can actually verify this claim.

No.  You did not say often.  I think you should clean up your arguments, because the argument you made was a categorical argument.  More specifically, your argument was modus ponens (if p, then q), and your premises were categorical ("if people got into unsettleable disputes like this, that the people just left the band and moved in with another").  Your statement was "if people" not "if some people", and in this particular context, there is no other way to interpret it as anything other than a categorical statement.

Your argument was wrong, and therefore your refutation of Clayton did not actually refute him.

I never claimed to demonstrate that it did.  I said we can verify his premises and see if it does.  Why is this so hard to understand?

Well, actually, you did claim it.  You said, "And since he says this is a "crucial point" it means that if he is wrong about this, a large chunk of his thoery falls flat on its face."  You trolling me again?

Source (I'm sure they do. I'm just reiterrating my point that I have no reason to believe someone that doesn't source his arguments).

You're just trolling here.  You full well know that wolves have disputes.  Earlier in this thread you specifically went on about how wolves do have disputes because they have a proper hierarchy.  There is no need to source every fucking point in a logical argument, especially something that is common knowledge.  Even in proper peer reviewed journals, articles don't source every point.  If you have specific issues with his points, feel free to raise them.  But don't start questioning something that you have already admitted to being the case.  Unless, of course, you actually do not believe that wolves have disputes...but then you would be flip flopping.

Show me evidence they did have a bully problem.

So are you disputing that they had a bully problem?  You are making the claim that all societies before, perhaps, 10,000 years ago never had at least one individual (and of course the possibility for several individuals) assert his will over a group of other humans?  That this only happened after the development of society?  Oh please...

Fine.  The wholesale slaughter of Canaan made Isreal the property of the Jews, and everyone should have respected their claim.

Straw manning again, huh?  Sure.  The wholesale slaughter of Canaan did make Israel the property of the Israelites.  That did not make it just property.  But sure, considering the definition of property, it did in fact become the Israelites' property, but it would have been unjust property.  Now, why should anyone have respected that claim?  Maybe it would be prudent to respect the claim of the strongest, but I think you are just trying to ridicule a logical argument instead of provide an actual logical reason it is false.  Just more trolling here.

Source it.  Show me evidence.  Assume I agree with you, I just want evidence.  

Show you evidence of what?  It's an either/or.  The premises imply the conclusion.  Either there was a bully originally in a society, and therefore statutory law, or there was no bully originally in a society, and there was customary law.  Unless you would like to demonstrate logically why this isn't the case...

Is dispute resolution law?  Or is it, like property, a specific type of dispute resolution.  Does it help anything to say that wolves alpha posturing is a form of law?

Dispute resolution is not law.  Law is what results from dispute resolution.  Property is a result of dispute resolution.  Are you trolling me here again?  We've been over this...and I've said the same thing before...

No, it does not help to say that the dispute resolution of wolves is law.  I've provided definitions of law, and I do not believe that those definitions allow for the behavior of wolves to be included in law.

You can take anything however you want.  Why does everybody here always want to "win the debate?"

Typically when I purposely don't respond to someone's points, I make a point of stating why.  Not doing so makes it seem like you are cherrypicking your opponent's points and have no intention of responding.  Now, can you demonstrate to me why asking you if I should take it as an implicit concession means that I am here to "win the debate"?

You really need to work on your logic.  You make categorical statements only to back out of them later, but you have done this many times in this thread, not just in this last post.  You seem to be straw manning and actually trolling at some points.  Specifically, stating earlier in the thread that wolves have disputes, and then questioning Clayton when he states it too...This is just trolling, pure and simple.

I'm actually interested in debating, but you are really making it hard when you answer me vaguely often (and it seems purposely).  It is also difficult when you bring up points that we have already dealt with, for instance not understanding that Libertarians have the concepts of just and unjust property, and then pretending like we don't have these concepts when it suits you (e.g. Canaanites and Iraelites).

Please, clean up your act.

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