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Why Anarcho-Capitalists Are Statists

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Neodoxy replied on Wed, Dec 5 2012 5:31 PM

Anenome,

I find your proposed system has no way of coming about in our world. The only way that this could be the case would be if the places which we lived were no longer accessible from the outside world and could only be accessed if we consented to it. For instance let's say that community A denies me stealing their stuff. If I go over to community A and steal their stuff then they inevitably have to use violence in order to stop me or they have to accept the fact that I'm jacking their stuff or they have to use violence against me. It doesn't matter whether or not I accept their rules because I can just do what I like unless they're willing to hold me to their rules and use violence. I don't care if I'm being "marginalized in society" if I can just take what I want.

I agree that your proposed system works very well, but only so long as there's a way to enforce it when someone violates someone else's property rights. If Bob doesn't mind be taking his stuff then that's perfectly fine! It's just him doing what he wants with his property rights. The fact is that that if y'all don't want Neodoxies climbing in your windows and taking your TV's (possibly drawing obcenities on the walls before leaving... depends on how I'm feeling that day) you're going to have to be willing to pick up your guns.

Why is it so hard to accept the use of force to prevent harm against person and property? That's what were supposed to be about  ! :P

Edit

Also, I agree with Autolykos. While it's inevitably a system with rulers, ANYTHING is going to be; it's inescapable unless we are in a world of angels. It's also a mockery to traditional systems with rulers to put the two on the same level. It's like saying that a perfectly healthy person inevitably has something wrong with them and that therefore saying that they sick and then putting them on the same level as someone with lethal radiation poisoning because of this.

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Neodoxy:

Then how is it that you advocate a system different than what we have now? You are free to accept private arbitration and aggressors (in this case the state) just take what they want? In my mind law needs to be a combination of what you're talking about and justifying violence in order to protect property.

I advocate a private law system instead of a statutory system. I would even prefer common law or customary law over what we have now. All I was explaining was that the definition of law that Clayton provided encompasses all types of law instead of allowing for only statutory law or maybe also common law. The point about today's statutory system is that it too uses courts of law as an alternative to violent conflict. I have no problem with violence being used to protect private property. I was only pointing out that if you and I were to duel over whatever, that we are not using law as a means to resolve the dispute; so it is not correct to say that if one of us is to "rule" over the other, that this is a result of private law. It is a result of a lack of law, private or otherwise.

The basic difference between statutory law and private law is that a third party, the state, says to you and me how our dispute is to be resolved - it is not private. If I steal your computer, then the dispute is between you and me. Now, maybe you might forgive me, or maybe you won't settle for less than twice the value of the computer, it doesn't matter. What does matter is that no matter what you and I might work out in order to avoid further violence, the state says that I don't have to pay restitution and you get to pay for me to go to prison.

End of dispute.

Unless I decide that I don't like it and I attempt to run from the police or break out of jail, or you might want to settle the matter yourself and break into my place in order to take back what is yours, which, by the way, the state also prohibits you from doing.

But you are right that this system doesn't necessarily lead to a libertarian society, but no system of law necessarily leads to whatever idea of libertarianism one might believe. I think that the further decentralized the law gets, the closer it gets to libertarianism (and certainly to my particular view of voluntaryism). But I don't believe that any system of law will entail pure Rothbardianism or even the voluntaryist ideas that I believe. I make a distinction between what I see as the best system of law and actions that are consistent with the golden rule.

So, I always prefer more decentralization of law to more centralization (or remaining stagnant), and the logical conclusion of this does not have law based on rulers. Whether or not this society will ever come about is anyone's guess. It's not utopian as it doesn't reject violence at all, so it is theoretically possible. It's probably more unlikely than a return to common law or customary law, but unlikely doesn't equal utopian.

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@ Neodoxy

And so how do you propose anarcho-capitalism comes about?

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Malachi replied on Wed, Dec 5 2012 6:46 PM
The only way that this could be the case would be if the places which we lived were no longer accessible from the outside world and could only be accessed if we consented to it.
it sounds like this problem could be solved by physical security measures such as walls, doors, and locks. One would have to initiate violence by breaching the physical barrier in order to access the premises without consenting to the rules, therefore they have estopped theirselves from objecting to defensive violence.
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hashem:
Yes, that would make you a ruler—but because that's what ruler means, not because of my reasoning.

There's no necessary meaning for the word "ruler".

hashem:
Again, I'm not arguing for or against it (at least not here in this thread, yet), just pointing out what amounts to an inconsistency among self-proclaimed anarchists who advocate a system of enforced law.

What do you see as the inconsistency?

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Neodoxy replied on Wed, Dec 5 2012 7:48 PM

@Malachi

Exactly, that's my whole point. If I break down your door (or even if your door is wide open) then you should have the right to use violence if I don't immediately get the hell off your property once you tell me to. At this point we are giving one individual the authority to "dominate" another individual to some capacity

@SkepticalMetal

A general acceptance of the population in the voluntaryist ideal and a dissolving of the centralized state into polycentric law centered almost exclusively around property right protection

@gotlucky

Will get back to you, just quick responding at the moment.

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No worries. I look forward to it.

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I'm sorry, but I don't envision that happening until...I don't know...probably the 2500s. Government won't let someone just waltz in and permit polycentric everything. It's just like with Ron Paul, did we really expect him to get in there? Hell no, it was impossible.

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Malachi replied on Wed, Dec 5 2012 7:57 PM
If I break down your door (or even if your door is wide open) then you should have the right to use violence if I don't immediately get the hell off your property once you tell me to. At this point we are giving one individual the authority to "dominate" another individual to some capacity
I dont believe that we do any such thing. Rather, it appears to me that this interaction is outside the scope of nonviolent dispute resolution, and would be better perceived as a physical contest of violence. If this incident ever does fall under the purview of some court, rather than giving one person the right to dominate another, we are declining to recognize a claim because the claimant has estopped himself from making that specific claim.
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hashem replied on Wed, Dec 5 2012 8:03 PM

Autolykos:
There's no necessary meaning for the word "ruler".

The dictionary definition is a fair default, therefore I reasonably default to it. Anarchy meaning "without ruler", and ruler denoting someone who excercises control over others.

Autolykos:
hashem:
inconsistency among self-proclaimed anarchists who advocate a system of enforced law.
What do you see as the inconsistency?

Anarchy means without rulers, but law enforcement requires enforcers.

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Malachi replied on Thu, Dec 6 2012 4:49 PM
Does "law enforcement" necessarily require appointing a special, separate class of enforcers? Or can you imagine peer-enforced law?
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Anarchy isn't a system without rulers. I rule over myself, and no one else. Universalize this and you get negative property rights, i.e. ancap.

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hashem replied on Thu, Dec 6 2012 6:13 PM

Not sure if I understand what you mean by "separate class", or by "peer-enforced law".

Also, and not that I'm attributing this to you, but I'm having trouble understanding why some people can be so bothered by acknowledging what anarchy actually requires. It's like they have an emotional attachment to a myth of what they want anarchy to mean. There isn't law in anarchy, at least not if it's enforced.

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Malachi replied on Thu, Dec 6 2012 6:42 PM
Not sure if I understand what you mean by "separate class", or by "peer-enforced law".
well "rulers" would be a separate class from "the ruled", right? Thats what I mean. You assert that law enforcement necessarily requires a separate class of rulers. I want you to tell me why law enforcement requires a separate class of rulers. It seems to me that it does not. Does language require a separate class of editors, or can we all compose and edit and pass judgment on each other's composition and editing decisions?
Also, and not that I'm attributing this to you, but I'm having trouble understanding why some people can be so bothered by acknowledging what anarchy actually requires. It's like they have an emotional attachment to a myth of what they want anarchy to mean. There isn't law in anarchy, at least not if it's enforced.
its probably hard for you to understand because youre interpreting their statements incorrectly. There can be law in anarchy, there are actually multiple forms of emergent law that do not require "rulers" as you define them. I seem to recall gotlucky explaining this to you earlier in this thread, but you seem to have an emotional attachment to this idea "anarchy cant happen because I define my terms in such a way that anarchy is the same as statism."
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hashem replied on Thu, Dec 6 2012 7:47 PM

Malachi:
You assert that law enforcement necessarily requires a separate class of rulers.

To be fair, those are your words. What I actually said was "law enforcement requires enforcers". If you want to talk about classes, then it seems apparent that someone can be ruled and a ruler. Is that what you mean by "peer-enforced law"? Or is it "not-enforced law" like gotlucky was talking about but it just happens to be called enforced for convenience? The language analogy is making me even more confused so if you could avoid it for now that'd be a great help.

Also maybe you can help me out here. I'm failing to fathom more than two distinct possibilities:

1. Law is enforced.

2. Law is not enforced.

Which one of these are you talking about?

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Malachi replied on Thu, Dec 6 2012 8:13 PM
To be fair, those are your words. What I actually said was "law enforcement requires enforcers".
yes, I summarized your argument. You appear to consider "law enforcers" to be synonymous with "rulers" which is (apparently) why you dont believe that law enforcement is compatible with anarchy. Because it requires rulers. What part of this summary do you take issue with, if any?
If you want to talk about classes, then it seems apparent that someone can be ruled and a ruler. Is that what you mean by "peer-enforced law"?
its hard for me to see how you can resolve these two statements. Peers have the same legal status with respect to each other. Rulers have a legal status that permits them to rule over the ruled, who have subordinate legal status.
Or is it "not-enforced law" like gotlucky was talking about but it just happens to be called enforced for convenience?
neither. Its a system where people with the same legal status enforce law. No rulers, only peer law enforcement.
The language analogy is making me even more confused so if you could avoid it for now that'd be a great help.
you might find it rewarding to struggle through your confusion so that you can reach understanding.

I am referring to option one, law is enforced (by peers, thus obviating the need for a class of rulers).

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hashem replied on Thu, Dec 6 2012 8:30 PM

Ok well both you and gotlucky are, as I've demonstrated, using words like law and enforce in incredibly unusual ways, so please bear with me as I struggle to help you convey your ideas in words that mean something I (and the majority of us who use words in ways that convey the expected meaning) can comprehend.

In common understanding, enforce connotes forceful compulsion, thus an enforcer is a ruler because he controls others. Can you please just explain, in a way so simple a child can understand, how law is enforced without a person controlling another. For example, a child would understand if I said, "Law are enforced rules, and positive laws are manmade rules enforced by men controlling others".

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Malachi replied on Thu, Dec 6 2012 9:10 PM
Ok well both you and gotlucky are, as I've demonstrated, using words like law and enforce in incredibly unusual ways
that is your continued assertion but you have not demonstrated it, rather the contrary appears to be the case. Using your own preferred dictionary site, a ruler is a person who rules or governs, and to rule is to exercise power and authority, to govern. These are all legal ideas, clearly a ruler has a legal status that conveys authority to himself. Peers have the same legal status as each other, I wonder how you can suggest that these could be the same thing in the same sense at the same time. Its also incredibly unusual for you to assert that statutory law is the only kind of law worthy of the name. You should read your own links.
In common understanding, enforce connotes forceful compulsion, thus an enforcer is a ruler because he controls others.
^This is an example of an equivocation fallacy. An enforcer doesnt have to be a governor. An enforcer doesnt have to exercise any more control than a peer, as human interaction always involves exchange of control over some variable, this is the case even for catallacty. A governor, ruler, or archon has a legal status that grants him "control" (as you put it) over those he rules. That makes him a ruler. A mugger who forcefully compels the transfer of a wallet or purse isnt a "ruler" except in your lexicon.
Can you please just explain, in a way so simple a child can understand, how law is enforced without a person controlling another. For example, a child would understand if I said, "Law are enforced rules, and positive laws are manmade rules enforced by men controlling others".
certainly. "Law is the field of established principles and customs that define how, and by whom, disputes are settled. In the case of anarchy, disputes are settled by the parties (they being of the same legal status) and enforced through the assent or refusal to engage in peer-type relations."
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Malachi replied on Thu, Dec 6 2012 9:14 PM
hashem:

Ok well both you and gotlucky are, as I've demonstrated, using words like law and enforce in incredibly unusual ways, so please bear with me as I struggle to help you convey your ideas in words that mean something I (and the majority of us who use words in ways that convey the expected meaning) can comprehend.

Mark Twain:
Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it's time to pause and reflect.
extra points for appealing to authority on a subject that you yourself find confusing.
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hashem replied on Thu, Dec 6 2012 9:39 PM

Are you talking about some magical commutopia? "If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough." —Einstein

In your hypothetical peer-enforced law-that-isn't-enforced lexicon, does anyone control anyone else? Is there forceful compulsion?

In other words, if law-respecters don't employ control through forceful compulsion, what stops someone from taking one look at these hippies and simply taking over and doing whatever they want?

Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it's time to pause and reflect. —Mark Twain
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Anenome replied on Thu, Dec 6 2012 9:55 PM
 
 

Neodoxy:

Anenome,

I find your proposed system has no way of coming about in our world. The only way that this could be the case would be if the places which we lived were no longer accessible from the outside world and could only be accessed if we consented to it.

Exactly! Which in a free society where all property is private property, is exactly the scenario you'd have! You have to realize that a free society would be absent any 'public propery' and the effect this has on societal organization. Lots of people seem to miss this fact.

Neodoxy:
For instance let's say that community A denies me stealing their stuff. If I go over to community A

So you've been denied entry to comm-A and now you're invading their territory.

Neodoxy:
and steal their stuff then they inevitably have to use violence in order to stop me

Comm-A has posted location-based rules. Meaning that if you enter their private property, you may do so only be consenting to their rules of conduct. By entering you implicitly agree. Thus, by stealing they can prosecute you justly.

Neodoxy:
or they have to accept the fact that I'm jacking their stuff or they have to use violence against me. It doesn't matter whether or not I accept their rules because I can just do what I like unless they're willing to hold me to their rules and use violence.

Yes, well I assume Comm-A has a contract with a private security force and would probably detect your unlawful entry the minute you crashed their borders after rejecting their rules-for-entry.

If you thought their rules were unfair and entered anyway, you could counter-sue saying their rules are unreasonable. Because we'd have a independent market adjudicator which you both would choose to ensure fairness, it would all work out reasonably well.

Neodoxy:
I don't care if I'm being "marginalized in society" if I can just take what I want.

But you can't. You'd find yourself up against their security company right away.

Neodoxy:
I agree that your proposed system works very well, but only so long as there's a way to enforce it when someone violates someone else's property rights.

I assume future property protection will be much different from what we're used to today. The internet of things will allow us to create title for everything we've ever purchased. You'll be able to prove a single thumb-tack was yours at one point. Call it an ownership-block-chain if you like (ala bitcoin).

And free-market security and surveillance will be different too, both more effective and vigilant and a softer hand so as not to violate your rights. Electronic fences and penetration detection would likely arise quickly.

Neodoxy:
If Bob doesn't mind [me] taking his stuff then that's perfectly fine! It's just him doing what he wants with his property rights.

This would be equivalent to declining to prosecute theft.

Neodoxy:
The fact is that that if y'all don't want Neodoxies climbing in your windows and taking your TV's (possibly drawing obcenities on the walls before leaving... depends on how I'm feeling that day) you're going to have to be willing to pick up your guns.

Why is it so hard to accept the use of force to prevent harm against person and property? That's what were supposed to be about  ! :P

I'm not sure I get what you're driving at here. Nowhere did I say that people couldn't use guns and force. I was arguing against the idea that we need rulers to enforce laws over people. I argue instead that laws can arise out of interaction between equals, and therefore we don't need anyone making laws for us, ie: Hashem's 'libertarians = neo-statists' argument.

Neodoxy:
Also, I agree with Autolykos. While it's inevitably a system with rulers, ANYTHING is going to be;

Where are the rulers in the system I propose, if the ruler is not each individual over himself? I propose a system in which no one can force you to accept any law or rule or w/e, and in which each individual has total control over what rules they are subject to (because they don't need to enter any area which uses a rule they object to).

 
Autarchy: rule of the self by the self; the act of self ruling.
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Anenome replied on Thu, Dec 6 2012 10:01 PM
 
 

gotlucky:
But you are right that this system doesn't necessarily lead to a libertarian society, but no system of law necessarily leads to whatever idea of libertarianism one might believe. I think that the further decentralized the law gets, the closer it gets to libertarianism (and certainly to my particular view of voluntaryism).

I think there is a system of law that would lead to a maximization of libertarian ideals. It's based on voluntarism. It's a "correction" of democracy. Democracy is immoral because the majority who want policy A force that policy on the minority who voted for, let's say, policy B. But let's tweak that. What if everyone is allowed to get what they vote for. That's what would naturally happen in a liebrtarian society. Just abandon any concept of forcing others, vote or not vote, and allow free association and personal choice to reign.

The majority lives by policy A, the minority chooses B for themselves, and each policy is only in effect within the property boundaries of each person in either group.

gotlucky:
So, I always prefer more decentralization of law to more centralization (or remaining stagnant), and the logical conclusion of this does not have law based on rulers.

Agreed.

gotlucky:
Whether or not this society will ever come about is anyone's guess. It's not utopian as it doesn't reject violence at all, so it is theoretically possible. It's probably more unlikely than a return to common law or customary law, but unlikely doesn't equal utopian.

Not only do I think it will come about, but I think making this sort of society happen must be our supreme goal the minute a seastead gets up and running. And I think we'll see it in our lifetimes. I plan to be there ASAP and help bring it about.

 
Autarchy: rule of the self by the self; the act of self ruling.
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Anenome replied on Thu, Dec 6 2012 10:04 PM
 
 

hashem:
In your hypothetical peer-enforced law-that-isn't-enforced lexicon, does anyone control anyone else? Is there forceful compulsion?

In other words, what is to stop people from simply ignoring laws, if not control through forceful compulsion?

It's not a mere question of force, it's a question of just force versus unjust force. We use private property rights to determine spheres of justice. It is just for me to control my body, not just for you to harm me, etc. with property.

In a free society, just uses of force would prevail widely. And only ever used to stop an unjust use of force, meaning a rights violation.

All there is to it.

You may call rights arbitrary but I do not, because there is a concrete region of space in which my body occupies and then does not occupy.

 
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hashem replied on Thu, Dec 6 2012 10:26 PM

Thank you Anenome for acknowledging what gotlucky and Malachi refuse, although Rothbard and all major anarchist theorist have already done so. Nobody's proposing a mind-melding commune like Malachi's talking about, where the definition of law is "rules that don't need to be enforced". Clearly, anarchists expect there to be law enforcement, and the honest ones will admit upfront YES, it will be maintained by control through forceful compulsion—in other words, it will be enforced, or it will need to be enforced if it is to persist past a single person taking one look at such pacifists and taking over.

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Anenome replied on Fri, Dec 7 2012 12:09 AM
 
 

I think everyone would agree to the justice of using defensive-coercion to stop aggression. The waters seemed to get muddied up above by what constituted ruler and the ruled.

Clearly a ruler is aggressive, and becomes one by continual aggression. I think they thought you were saying that an exerciser of defensive-coercion also constitutes a ruler, which I would certainly not agree with.

The interesting thing is that when people feel like they are about to have their rights violated, historically they've tended to become tyrants themselves to put down the threat in order to avoid a tyranny from being established over themselves. People fear tyranny only when it is exterior to them and held over them. We don't nearly fear being a tyrant as much.

 
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hashem:

Ok well both you and gotlucky are, as I've demonstrated, using words like law and enforce in incredibly unusual ways, so please bear with me as I struggle to help you convey your ideas in words that mean something I (and the majority of us who use words in ways that convey the expected meaning) can comprehend.

First of all, it doesn't matter if we are using words in unusual ways so long as we define them, which we have. Second of all, your definition of law is the modern biased version based on statutory law. As I said before, your definition of law is akin to the communist definition of capitalism. Sure, the modern standard definition of capitalism requires a state, but so what? That's not the capitalism that anarcho-capitalists are talking about.

In the case of law, the definition that I have provided that I picked up from Clayton encompasses all types of law, not just statutory law. Your definition of law excludes customary law, religious law, etc. This is just as the communist definition of capitalism excludes anarcho-capitalism.

hashem:

In common understanding, enforce connotes forceful compulsion, thus an enforcer is a ruler because he controls others. Can you please just explain, in a way so simple a child can understand, how law is enforced without a person controlling another. For example, a child would understand if I said, "Law are enforced rules, and positive laws are manmade rules enforced by men controlling others".

Again, you are stuck on the idea that law must be enforced. You are stuck in a statist paradigm. You may reject law, but you still can only conceive of law as statutory or maybe even common law. Maybe. But you cannot understand all of the various types of law, all of which have existed at some point in history.

Enforcers naturally must have a dominant relationship with the person they are enforcing. Malachi has pointed out that rulers maintain a separate legal status. We can and I certainly have already acknowledged that relationships can have a ruler in that particular instance regardless of law. Even though, however, law does not have to be enforced. The purpose of law is to resolve disputes without further violence. In the case of statutory law, the state makes the decision as to how those disputes get resolved. If you don't like it, then the state deals with you as its agents see fit.

But that's not law. That is outside the realm of law. That is just violent conflict. There is a distinction, which you have refused to acknowledge, between settling disputes with violent conflict and settling them through nonviolent argumentation, and of course people could always drop the dispute entirely, but again that is not a matter of law. Disputes that are settled by violence are not within the realm of law. The behavior may or may not be considered lawful, but that is not the same as being within the realm of law. Lawful behavior just means that nobody can take that behavior to a court of law.

I am not against law. I favor people settling their disputes through nonviolent argumentation. But I also am not against violent conflict so long as it is in accordance with the golden rule, reciprocity. No matter what system, law is always a matter of nonviolent argumentation. There is always the threat of violence looming over the dispute by at least one side. In a statutory system, the state is the one that threatens the parties to go resolve the matter in a court of law. But the entire point of the court of law is to settle the matter through nonviolent argumentation. There are some people who disagree so much with the state's resolutions that they either fight the state or fight the other disputant.

But those fights are not within the realm of law. They are against the whole point of law. You can bitch and moan all you want how this definition of law is not standard, but I don't really care. Each time you decide to point out that I or Malachi or anyone else uses a nonstandard modern definition of law so therefore we are wrong, it just shows that you have no interest in engaging us on the actual ideas.

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Anenome:

 
 

gotlucky:
But you are right that this system doesn't necessarily lead to a libertarian society, but no system of law necessarily leads to whatever idea of libertarianism one might believe. I think that the further decentralized the law gets, the closer it gets to libertarianism (and certainly to my particular view of voluntaryism).

I think there is a system of law that would lead to a maximization of libertarian ideals. It's based on voluntarism. It's a "correction" of democracy. Democracy is immoral because the majority who want policy A force that policy on the minority who voted for, let's say, policy B. But let's tweak that. What if everyone is allowed to get what they vote for. That's what would naturally happen in a liebrtarian society. Just abandon any concept of forcing others, vote or not vote, and allow free association and personal choice to reign.

The majority lives by policy A, the minority chooses B for themselves, and each policy is only in effect within the property boundaries of each person in either group.

gotlucky:
So, I always prefer more decentralization of law to more centralization (or remaining stagnant), and the logical conclusion of this does not have law based on rulers.

Agreed.

gotlucky:
Whether or not this society will ever come about is anyone's guess. It's not utopian as it doesn't reject violence at all, so it is theoretically possible. It's probably more unlikely than a return to common law or customary law, but unlikely doesn't equal utopian.

Not only do I think it will come about, but I think making this sort of society happen must be our supreme goal the minute a seastead gets up and running. And I think we'll see it in our lifetimes. I plan to be there ASAP and help bring it about.

 
 

Well I agree that a fully decentralized system of law would lead to a maximization of libertarian ideals, but I don't know if it would necessarily lead to it being a fully voluntaryist society, excluding criminals. It's certainly a better system than what we have now, and I hope you are right that there could be a fully decentralized society in our lifetime.

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hashem replied on Fri, Dec 7 2012 8:46 AM

OK since I can't get an honest straight answer out of you, I'll just ask the question a different way:

When is violence just in anarchism?

And for the umpteenth time, no a ruler does not necessarily have anything to do with law. That's you invoking an unusual definition. A legal status is a fiction, it only exists when and to the extent that someone acknowledges it. If you use force to compell me to do something, you are ruling me whether I believe you have any sort of legal status or not.

Also I get the rotten sense you guys are doing exactly what I was arguing against in other threads. You're sneaking in statism through a back door under the banner of liberty. My original question didn't have anything to do with, and still has nothing to do with law. It's a question about rulers, and you can give me a straightforward answer if you feel like being honest.

Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it's time to pause and reflect. —Mark Twain
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Malachi replied on Fri, Dec 7 2012 4:32 PM
no a ruler does not necessarily have anything to do with law.
You got it backwards, law does not necessarily have anything to do with a ruler. A ruler necessarily requires legal status in order to rule, otherwise he is just a criminal aggressor.
A legal status is a fiction, it only exists when and to the extent that someone acknowledges it.
good, maybe now you can see why a criminal aggressor isnt a ruler.
If you use force to compell me to do something, you are ruling me whether I believe you have any sort of legal status or not.
youre using an unusual definition of ruler, one that would apply to a mugger or a rapist. If you think that we are using "anarchy" to describe a world where no one is ever subject to compulsion, then you havent been paying attention.
Also I get the rotten sense you guys are doing exactly what I was arguing against in other threads. You're sneaking in statism through a back door under the banner of liberty.
Maybe if you put more effort into understanding what other people are saying, and somewhat less effort into dredging up old fallacies, you wouldnt feel that way.
My original question didn't have anything to do with, and still has nothing to do with law. It's a question about rulers, and you can give me a straightforward answer if you feel like being honest.
well rulers have a legal status that permits them to govern others. So thats why it is necessary to invoke law to answer your question about rulers. I'm pretty sure that when people advocate anarchy, they mean to suggest a society where no one has the legal privilege of compelling another to do something. If youre going to advocate a society where no one actually compels anyone to do anything, you should pick your own word. Call it a "crime-free zone" or something. And be sure to let us know how you convinced the criminals to give up their aspirations of ever taking advantage of anyone.
Keep the faith, Strannix. -Casey Ryback, Under Siege (Steven Seagal)
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Malachi replied on Fri, Dec 7 2012 4:54 PM
Are you talking about some magical commutopia?
where would you get that idea? Who invoked magic?
"If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough." —Einstein
Very interesting that you seem to think the problem is on my end. Perhaps you should approach these discussions with a little bit more humility.
In your hypothetical peer-enforced law-that-isn't-enforced lexicon,
you need to read my posts again, because apparently youre confusing my statements with those of gotlucky, despite the explicit answer I gave you above.
does anyone control anyone else?
No remote controlled people have been invented thus far, to my knowledge.
Is there forceful compulsion?
I dont believe that I have suggested that criminal aggression would cease to exist. Criminal aggressors would simply no longer enjoy the protection of law.
In other words, if law-respecters don't employ control through forceful compulsion, what stops someone from taking one look at these hippies and simply taking over and doing whatever they want?
Not sure how to answer your question. How is someone going to "take over"? Do you mean commit crimes? Also, what do you mean when you say "control"? Is deterrence part of control in your mind? If I vow to shoot anyone who steps into my yard, and no one steps into my yard, have I controlled anyone? If someone does step into my yard and I shoot them, have I controlled anyone? Finally, in the event where Abigail enjoys invidious consumption and poor personal security habits, creating the circumstance where she becomes the victim of a robber, would you say that she "controlled" someone to rob her? Or do you only recognize negative incentives as a component of control?
Keep the faith, Strannix. -Casey Ryback, Under Siege (Steven Seagal)
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Neodoxy replied on Fri, Dec 7 2012 7:46 PM

gotlucky,

I'm not entirely certain that I understand your position. I am responding to the following, which I believe to be your viewpoint. If I have gotten your viewpoint wrong please forgive me; I do not have a very in depth knowledge of the various forms of law or what they entail:

You believe in a system in which disputes can be brought to a third party in order to resolve conflicts. This system should be a free system of third party arbitration. It does not apply to anyone who does not agree to it.

If this is ongratulations, you're not a statist.

With this said I think that:

A. Your system is dangerous because I believe that there needs to be an outstanding "law of the land" which is explicit, no matter what it entails

B. As such you still have not addressed the idea that the state fits into your framework. The state doesn't follow the nonexistent anti-property violation laws. The state invades property, which isn't explicitly denied within your system.

Have I gotten something wrong?

Edit

Skeptic,

I don't think that we will be seeing liberty in our lifetimes. Inevitably that's the only realistic way for the system to come about, however. There is the possibility of secession, but I can't see that happening/being maintained unless some version of what I talked about happens. Also if a small society were to become ancap and it all work out that would vastly hasten the process. With this said I'm exceedingly skeptical of seasteading, although I feel a little better about the possibility of a free city.

At last those coming came and they never looked back With blinding stars in their eyes but all they saw was black...
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gotlucky replied on Fri, Dec 7 2012 10:55 PM

@Neodoxy

Well, disputes do not have to be brought to a third party. A third party can be sought as a mediator, someone to help the parties resolve the dispute. But two people could just sort it out between themselves. Both happen all the time without the state. Let me try to explain my beliefs again and I'll try to be clearer:

First, I separate what system of law I prefer and what actions I consider to be moral. I don't think there is any system of law that will entail a perfect reflection of my beliefs on morality, and I don't think that there is a system of law that will perfectly reflect regular anarcho-capitalism. My main point is that I prefer decentralization in law, and full decentralization in law is a logical conclusion of the golden rule, which I value.

What I do know is that anything but full decentralization is not compatible with my view on morality, but I'd still rather a common law system over a statutory system, and I'd rather a customary system over a common law system.

Second, your point is correct that there is a great similarity between the statutory system and my system. After all, law is always "voluntary" in the sense that people prefer it over the alternative which is open and violent conflict, unless of course they prefer open and violent conflict over using law to settle the dispute. However, there are still important and relevant differences between statutory law and other types of law, including my ideal.

Let me describe a little bit about some various systems of law.

  • In statutory law, it is the state that makes the law, and more specifically the legislature.
  • In common law, it is the judiciary that makes the law through their rulings.
  • In customary law, it is the customs and norms that become law.
  • In religious law, it is the tenets of the religion that become law.
  • Bylaws can be the rules of a particular organization.

So you can see that there are very many different ways that law can exist in society, some of which can actually exist at the same time. The real difference between all these various systems (and I'm sure a legal expert could probably list more, such as commercial law, but that has become mostly an offshoot of statutory law at this point) is *who* makes the law.

What I am advocating is applying private law to it's logical conclusion: eliminating rulers from the production of law. So no legislatures telling A and B how to resolve their dispute. No judges telling A and B how to resolve their dispute. No third parties telling A and B how to resolve their dispute. Of course, I am completely okay with both A and B inviting third parties to help them resolve their dispute. I am not okay with a third party dictating to A and B what the resolution ought to be.

Neodoxy:

A. Your system is dangerous because I believe that there needs to be an outstanding "law of the land" which is explicit, no matter what it entails

There really cannot be more than one law regarding the same thing at the same time. You cannot simultaneously have law or norms that say "thou shalt drive on the right side of the road" and "thou shalt drive on the left side of the road" (unless of course it is a one way). You cannot simultaneously have "thou shalt murder" and "thou shalt not murder". If you look at the double standards of the state, the law really is "thou shalt not steal under these particular circumstances. If you are acting as an agent of the state, then you may steal in certain circumstances".

This is true for any system of law. In private law, individuals do not consent to being murdered by definition. There cannot be a law supporting murder in a private law system. Once there is law that allows for aggression, you begin to see some sort of state emerge.

Neodoxy:

B. As such you still have not addressed the idea that the state fits into your framework. The state doesn't follow the nonexistent anti-property violation laws. The state invades property, which isn't explicitly denied within your system.

I'm not sure I follow this.

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Anenome replied on Sat, Dec 8 2012 4:36 AM
 
 

"A. Your system is dangerous because I believe that there needs to be an outstanding "law of the land" which is explicit, no matter what it entails"

Perhaps, and I know what you mean, but I have a different idea about how to bring this about.

Let's call this overarching "law of the land" foundational law. It encompasses the a priori foundation from which anyone can build a society.

Others might choose a different foundation and they'd be free to do so.

By what mechanism can this foundational law be consented to by each individual:

- forced consent (ala democracy)

If you're born into a region, the law applies to you. Also if a majority of those around you approve a law, it now applies to you.

- territorial consent

If you cross a political boundary, you are now in something called a 'jurisdiction' defined arbitrarily, and the law now applies to you.

- explicit consent

You actually accept a law explicitly--it's treated more like a contract than anything.

What I suggest is that in a free society, people must explicitly accept any foundational law.

So, how exactly do people accept foundational law? Do they literally sign their name to some document?

I think they could, but more likely it will be based on digital-law. The internet so far has not penetrated into the legal sphere, but there's literally no reason why it shouldn't other than systemic momentum by current practitioners.

You could add rules or law to a 'library' much like someone might send a bitcoin to your wallet.

Once we have a mechanism for sending law to other people, basically allowing them to trade law, then the way foundational law becomes established is via trade and community.

So, let's say that A wants to do business with B. They are the first two people in a new region. It's an important contract, let's say, such that they're worried about possible future disputes, so they decide to lay-out explicitly a set of principles their association will be conducted under--some laws, including foundational laws.

There's the first voluntaryist foundational agreement, between these two.

But along comes C and A&B want to do business with C, but C says they're crazy, neither of them have the right to free speech in their foundational document. Don't you know about free speech? It's awesome! A&B agree and add free speech to their foundational document, C accepts their other provisions, and now there are three.

By a process of legal exchange, law production can be crowd-sourced and individualized.

Ultimately, because most people aren't lawyers or law-savvy, people would tend to follow intellectual leaders who would establish a business to research and improve laws generally, to propose new kinds of contracts, solve legal issues, etc. And maybe you yourself would subscribe to lawyer-K's theory of property but lawyer-L's theory of rights, etc.

But any time that two people need to contract, they would need to ensure there's an agreed-upon legal basis underlying that contract, and this would keep law a living entity. As problems develop with certain features, people would devise solutions in the form of new laws and then people would write them into their personal law-set, or adopt others' versions of that law, according to how important it was and whether someone demanded it of them to do business.

Beyond that, it would be possible for private owners to tie location to a law set, allowing you to retrieve by internet the rules for entry to X's private property, let's say. Etc., etc.

I used to think that we needed to write an amazing libertarian legal code, such as Rothbard recommends, that would last the ages--like the constitution tried to do. But we don't, all we need to do is to allow for the exchange of law, and it will come about on its own, largely, as a function of the exchange and needs of people, ourselves included.

Not constitutional law, but transactional law.

 
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