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Nuclear Disarmament

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Sieben Posted: Sat, Apr 17 2010 10:42 AM
Obamas gotten a lot of press for his nuclear treaty thing... basically my interpretation is that "crazy countries" end up with fewer nukes. But its okay for us to have nukes. Anyway, it seems like a good thing that there are fewer nukes in the world, especially if folks who might use them on us can't get them. Is this an instance where the interest of the state intersects with the general interest?
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Nielsio replied on Sat, Apr 17 2010 10:47 AM
Snowflake:
Obamas gotten a lot of press for his nuclear treaty thing... basically my interpretation is that "crazy countries" end up with fewer nukes. But its okay for us to have nukes. Anyway, it seems like a good thing that there are fewer nukes in the world, especially if folks who might use them on us can't get them. Is this an instance where the interest of the state intersects with the general interest?

State interest, incentives and paranoia created enough of these weapons to end the world as we know it many times over. The fact that this didn't happen yet shows us how incredibly lucky we are, not how incredibly safe we are.
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Sieben replied on Sat, Apr 17 2010 11:02 AM
Nielsio:
State interest, incentives and paranoia created enough of these weapons to end the world as we know it many times over. The fact that this didn't happen yet shows us how incredibly lucky we are, not how incredibly safe we are.
So you would support Obama's efforts to disarm? :)
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socialdtk replied on Sat, Apr 17 2010 11:04 AM
I agree with what Rothbard says concerning weapons of mass destruction in his essay War, Peace and the State. He takes the position that the possession of nuclear weapons is a criminal act because unlike a rifle it is impossible to limit the effects of a nuclear bombs to criminal entities. Since one does not have the right to aggress upon third parties in their pursuit of justice this type of weapon has no place in a libertarian society. Even though Mr. Obama's nuclear disarrangement policy appear to have sinister motives I can support any effort to reduce the number of nuclear weapons that exist today.
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Bert replied on Sat, Apr 17 2010 11:08 AM
Sounds like a political scheme to get their enemies where they want them. If they are really serious about disarming we'd start if off first and now.
I had always been impressed by the fact that there are a surprising number of individuals who never use their minds if they can avoid it, and an equal number who do use their minds, but in an amazingly stupid way. - Carl Jung, Man and His Symbols
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socialdtk replied on Sat, Apr 17 2010 11:20 AM
Bert:
Sounds like a political scheme to get their enemies where they want them. If they are really serious about disarming we'd start if off first and now.
I recall hearing Mr. Obama saying that the United States would be willing to "provide safe storage" for enriched uranium that certain states have agreed to get rid of. This sounds very suspicious to me and leads me to believe that you are exactly right in saying that the United States is only looking after their own political interests. Even though this is most likely true I feel a small victory is won each and every time a nuclear bomb is destroyed.
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Nielsio replied on Sat, Apr 17 2010 11:21 AM
Snowflake:
Nielsio:
State interest, incentives and paranoia created enough of these weapons to end the world as we know it many times over. The fact that this didn't happen yet shows us how incredibly lucky we are, not how incredibly safe we are.
So you would support Obama's efforts to disarm? :)

I don't know anything about these treaties but when they don't implement something so simple to increase everybody's safety which is to decriminalize a bunch of harmless drugs, then I don't doubt for one second that whatever Obama is saying is all talk.
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Conza88 replied on Sat, Apr 17 2010 11:24 AM
socialdtk:
I agree with what Rothbard says concerning weapons of mass destruction in his essay War, Peace and the State. He takes the position that the possession of nuclear weapons is a criminal act
Strawman. That isn't his position. I suggest you carefully re-read the said passage.
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socialdtk replied on Sat, Apr 17 2010 11:30 AM
Conza88:
I suggest you carefully re-read the said passage.
excert from Rothbard's War, Peace and the State:

It has often been maintained, and especially by conservatives, that the development of the horrendous modern weapons of mass murder (nuclear weapons, rockets, germ warfare, etc.) is only a difference of degree rather than kind from the simpler weapons of an earlier era. Of course, one answer to this is that when the degree is the number of human lives, the difference is a very big one.4 But another answer that the libertarian is particularly equipped to give is that while the bow and arrow and even the rifle can be pinpointed, if the will be there, against actual criminals, modern nuclear weapons cannot. Here is a crucial difference in kind. Of course, the bow and arrow could be used for aggressive purposes, but it could also be pinpointed to use only against aggressors. Nuclear weapons, even "conventional" aerial bombs, cannot be. These weapons are ipso facto engines of indiscriminate mass destruction. (The only exception would be the extremely rare case where a mass of people who were all criminals inhabited a vast geographical area.) We must, therefore, conclude that the use of nuclear or similar weapons, or the threat thereof, is a sin and a crime against humanity for which there can be no justification.

This is why the old cliché no longer holds that it is not the arms but the will to use them that is significant in judging matters of war and peace. For it is precisely the characteristic of modern weapons that they cannot be used selectively, cannot be used in a libertarian manner. Therefore, their very existence must be condemned, and nuclear disarmament becomes a good to be pursued for its own sake. And if we will indeed use our strategic intelligence, we will see that such disarmament is not only a good, but the highest political good that we can pursue in the modem world. For just as murder is a more heinous crime against another man than larceny, so mass murder – indeed murder so widespread as to threaten human civilization and human survival itself – is the worst crime that any man could possibly commit. And that crime is now imminent. And the forestalling of massive annihilation is far more important, in truth, than the demunicipalization of garbage disposal, as worthwhile as that may be. Or are libertarians going to wax properly indignant about price control or the income tax, and yet shrug their shoulders at or even positively advocate the ultimate crime of mass murder?

Am I missing something?

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Conza88 replied on Sat, Apr 17 2010 11:35 AM
This seems familiar... Wink
socialdtk:
Am I missing something?
Don't worry, lots of people have made the same mistake.

Murray N. Rothbard:
(The only exception would be the extremely rare case where a mass of people who were all criminals inhabited a vast geographical area.) We must, therefore, conclude that the use of nuclear or similar weapons, or the threat thereof, is a sin and a crime against humanity for which there can be no justification.

Just "use of", "or threat of"... NOT ownership. And as such, it is consistent with every single other thing he's ever written on the subject of self defense, non aggression & property rights. Smile

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socialdtk replied on Sat, Apr 17 2010 11:43 AM
Thank you for the explanation but I'm still confused over the portion of the essay:

For it is precisely the characteristic of modern weapons that they cannot be used selectively, cannot be used in a libertarian manner. Therefore, their very existence must be condemned, and nuclear disarmament becomes a good to be pursued for its own sake. And if we will indeed use our strategic intelligence, we will see that such disarmament is not only a good, but the highest political good that we can pursue in the moden world.

Insanity in individuals is something rare - but in groups, parties, nations and epochs, it is the rule.
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Nielsio replied on Sat, Apr 17 2010 11:52 AM
Conza,

That Rothbard says their use must be immoral, then that wouldn't necessarily include it's possession. But he then goes on to state it's possession must be immoral.

So I don't think your position regarding Rothbard holds.


PS This is independent of my views on these weapons.
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Conza88 replied on Sat, Apr 17 2010 12:05 PM
socialdtk:
Thank you for the explanation but I'm still confused over the portion of the essay:

For it is precisely the characteristic of modern weapons that they cannot be used selectively, cannot be used in a libertarian manner. Therefore, their very existence must be condemned, and nuclear disarmament becomes a good to be pursued for its own sake. And if we will indeed use our strategic intelligence, we will see that such disarmament is not only a good, but the highest political good that we can pursue in the moden world.

Ok, what exactly is the confusion? You can condemn something, but that doesn't mean it should be outlawed [possession]... which he is clearly not making the case for. Considering he openly notes the exception, where its use could be justified. [everyone a criminal (i.e murder)] But obviously it can never be justified in these instances with the state around, considering the state is funded by theft. And really - the only reason the weapon exists at all. If the threat of use of it happens at all [against the innocent], then naturally it is a sin, a crime against humanity, mass murder etc.. of indiscriminate killing. Nagasaki, Hiroshima..

Nielsio:
That Rothbard says their use must be immoral
Nay. There is a possible exception, as he notes.
Nielsio:
But he then goes on to state it's possession must be immoral.
Huh? Where?
Nielsio:
So I don't think your position regarding Rothbard holds.
It does. Simply replace the nuclear weapon, with a cluster bomb or whatever else, a grenade launcher.
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I am going by Walter Block's here and not by what Rothbard said. The mere possession of nuclear bombs constitutes a threat in and of itself.

Democracy means the opportunity to be everyone's slave.—Karl Kraus.

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There's no convincing anyone that you possess a nuclear weapon for household decoration only.
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Bert replied on Sat, Apr 17 2010 12:24 PM
I keep my warheads in a stained wood case with 1/2" thick glass panels for easy visibility to the prestige collection of potential destruction. For safety, I always keep it locked.
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Conza88 replied on Sat, Apr 17 2010 12:30 PM
Caley McKibbin:
There's no convincing anyone that you possess a nuclear weapon for household decoration only.
And who would you need to convince? Where is the property conflict? ...
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Nielsio replied on Sat, Apr 17 2010 12:36 PM
Conza88:
Caley McKibbin:
There's no convincing anyone that you possess a nuclear weapon for household decoration only.
And who would you need to convince? Where is the property conflict? ...

In a stateless society the property conflict is with literally everyone.
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MatthewF replied on Sat, Apr 17 2010 12:40 PM

Nielsio:
In a stateless society the property conflict is with literally everyone.

Where is the the conflict if the weapon isn't used?

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MatthewF:

Nielsio:
In a stateless society the property conflict is with literally everyone.

Where is the the conflict if the weapon isn't used?

Everywhere by the fact that the item is a huge investment with no alternative use.
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Spideynw replied on Sat, Apr 17 2010 12:42 PM
socialdtk:
He takes the position that the possession of nuclear weapons is a criminal act because unlike a rifle it is impossible to limit the effects of a nuclear bombs to criminal entities.
Same with bombs, missiles, artillery, and large caliber weapons like those on tanks.

At most, I think only 5% of the adult population would need to stop cooperating to have real change.

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MatthewF:

Nielsio:
In a stateless society the property conflict is with literally everyone.

Where is the the conflict if the weapon isn't used?

The weapon's existence in possession constitutes a threat. That is the property conflict.

Democracy means the opportunity to be everyone's slave.—Karl Kraus.

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Spideynw replied on Sat, Apr 17 2010 12:45 PM
E. R. Olovetto:
The weapon's existence in possession constitutes a threat. That is the property conflict.
So is owning a gun or a knife.

At most, I think only 5% of the adult population would need to stop cooperating to have real change.

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Nielsio replied on Sat, Apr 17 2010 12:47 PM
Spideynw:
E. R. Olovetto:
The weapon's existence in possession constitutes a threat. That is the property conflict.
So is owning a gun or a knife.

A gun can be used perfectly for self-defense purposes. An atomic weapon cannot be used for defensive purposes in a state-less society.
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Spideynw replied on Sat, Apr 17 2010 12:50 PM
Nielsio:

A gun can be used perfectly for self-defense purposes. An atomic weapon cannot be used for defensive purposes in a state-less society.
I have no idea what you think of as "defensive purposes" then, because I could definitely threaten an aggressor to launch my nuke at him if he tried to hurt me. As a side note, I don't think anyone in a free society would ever own a nuclear weapon. Individuals can get their hands on them today if they wanted to, but guess what, they don't.

At most, I think only 5% of the adult population would need to stop cooperating to have real change.

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Atomic bomb damage cannot be limited to a specific justifiable target. Let's not get into continuum fallacies.
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Nielsio replied on Sat, Apr 17 2010 12:51 PM
Spideynw:
Nielsio:

A gun can be used perfectly for self-defense purposes. An atomic weapon cannot be used for defensive purposes in a state-less society.
I have no idea what you think of as "defensive purposes" then, because I could definitely threaten an aggressor to launch my nuke at him if he tried to hurt me.

Without committing aggressive murder of innocents?
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Bert replied on Sat, Apr 17 2010 12:55 PM
Where does the funding come from to build nuclear weapons? If it were a stateless-society, who would invest money into the production of a nuclear weapon? It obviously wouldn't be the average citizen. Would it be economical for an individual or more likely a company to obtain a nuclear weapon for whatever benefit? Even though they exist, an individual obtaining a nuclear weapon seems highly unlikely. If anything some sort of group would have to obtain it.
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Spideynw:
E. R. Olovetto:
The weapon's existence in possession constitutes a threat. That is the property conflict.
So is owning a gun or a knife.
This is just stupid. Read Block's article.

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Spideynw replied on Sat, Apr 17 2010 12:58 PM
Caley McKibbin:
Atomic bomb damage cannot be limited to a specific justifiable target. Let's not get into continuum fallacies.
Same with missiles or any bomb or artillery.

At most, I think only 5% of the adult population would need to stop cooperating to have real change.

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MatthewF replied on Sat, Apr 17 2010 12:59 PM

Caley McKibbin:
Atomic bomb damage cannot be limited to a specific justifiable target.

The damage could be limited by not deploying said bomb.

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Spideynw replied on Sat, Apr 17 2010 12:59 PM
Nielsio:
Without committing aggressive murder of innocents?
Same thing with any bomb, missile, or artillery or tank.

At most, I think only 5% of the adult population would need to stop cooperating to have real change.

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Merlin replied on Sat, Apr 17 2010 1:12 PM
Snowflake:
Obamas gotten a lot of press for his nuclear treaty thing... basically my interpretation is that "crazy countries" end up with fewer nukes. But its okay for us to have nukes. Anyway, it seems like a good thing that there are fewer nukes in the world, especially if folks who might use them on us can't get them. Is this an instance where the interest of the state intersects with the general interest?
The folk with the best nuclear weapons policy on earth are the brits: they keep the minimal number of SSBNs to maintain at all times a 24/7 nuclear force on the sea with 300 nukes, just enough to destroy every county on earth which might attack. As far as I’m concerned the brits could very easily disband the whole army and kekp only those 4 subs. So, every move towards a more ‘british’ policy is good. Obama’s treaty is good, as the US has far, far too many nukes, but unilateral disarmament down the british level (but not below, as only folk which want a new total war can possibly want) would have been preferable. Here state interest coincides with the general interest. As for ‘crazy people’ getting nuke, I look very hopefully forward to the day when nukes shall cost a million bucks apiece, as that alone would practically end all military conflict on earth and the world would revert back to thousands of microstates. A blessing for humankind. So let us hope that Iran actually produces nukes setting of a nuclear armament race in the region, and possibly further. Here state interest is clearly agianst the general interest.
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MatthewF:

Caley McKibbin:
Atomic bomb damage cannot be limited to a specific justifiable target.

The damage could be limited by not deploying said bomb.

There's no convincing anyone that you possess a nuclear weapon for household decoration only.
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MatthewF replied on Sat, Apr 17 2010 1:20 PM

Caley McKibbin:
There's no convincing anyone that you possess a nuclear weapon for household decoration only.

I agree. But are we talking about right and wrong here, or just popular opinion?

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MatthewF:

I agree. But are we talking about right and wrong here, or just popular opinion?

Popular opinion about what?
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MatthewF replied on Sat, Apr 17 2010 1:28 PM

About another persons reasons for owning a bomb.

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Nielsio replied on Sat, Apr 17 2010 2:02 PM
Spideynw:
Nielsio:
Without committing aggressive murder of innocents?
Same thing with any bomb, missile, or artillery or tank.

Can you answer the question. I don't like this flip-flopping business.
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MatthewF:

About another persons reasons for owning a bomb.

If it is opinion that the only plausible reason for owning a nuclear bomb is criminal, it is opinion that a man lunging at your throat with a knife has only one plausible intent: criminal. You could suppose, if it suits your interest, that he is just practicing and will stop just before he reaches your throat. I prefer common sense when dealing with my own safety. Right and wrong may be theoretically clear cut. However, theory does not judge real situations.
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MatthewF replied on Sat, Apr 17 2010 2:30 PM

Caley McKibbin:
If it is opinion that the only plausible reason for owning a nuclear bomb is criminal, it is opinion that a man lunging at your throat with a knife has only one plausible intent: criminal.

A man owning a knife or a nuke isn't criminal.

A man "lunging at you" with a knife or a nuke is criminal.

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