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Source link: http://archive.mises.org/4247/contrarians-in-conflict-anarchists-in-abundance/

Contrarians in Conflict! Anarchists in Abundance!

October 22, 2005 by

In this article, I introduce the new issue of the Journal of Libertarian Studies, which offers a cornucopia of exciting and controversial articles debating some of the central questions of libertarian theory. FULL ARTICLE


Lowell R. October 22, 2005 at 12:10 pm

Hmm… Two articles on anarchocapitalism. For what it’s worth, what was the last article in JLS supporting minarchism (besides, I guess, Feser’s piece on conservative libertarianism)?

Dain October 22, 2005 at 3:19 pm

As for the sweatshop issue, one could argue that American companies should be boycotted because their workers’ incomes are going overwhelmingly to support the government, and that the workers’ conditions are not truly the result of a free market.
Thus, it seems the anti-anti-sweatshop position of the libertarian, and a defense of the “best option available” still stands (except in cases of outright slavery, as alluded to in the summary).

Marco Saba October 23, 2005 at 8:38 am

On malinvestments:
MOVE OVER, ADAM SMITH: The Visible Hand of Uncle Sam – John Embry, Andrew Hepburn, August 2005

KY Leong October 24, 2005 at 3:55 am

“Government: Unnecessary But Inevitable,” Randall Holcombe – “… because what drives the creation of states is not the need to provide services but the desire to plunder and dominate.”

Governments dominate in order to “plunder”. Governments plunder via monopolistic public services. Monopolistic services are often established via the democratic process, and governments grow most effectively under a democratic system.

While it is correct to argue that no state exists “innocently” for the sole purpose of providing public goods, a government’s desire to plunder is satified most expediently in the name of providing public goods, to the exclusivity of any competing private producers.

States that operate ONLY on the basis of plundering its citizens cannot last, while democratic governments that pretend to provide a public service while incessantly plunder can have considerale mileage.

Government public goods and state “plunders” are two sides of the same coin in a modern state.

Michael A. Clem October 24, 2005 at 3:58 pm

Good Stuff! While I’m not sure I’m ready to change my positions on these things, at least these alternative approaches give me something to think about.
Probably what needs to be done with the sweatshop issue is the hard research necessary to uncover just exactly where the coercion is taking place. Without that, all we can really do is ask the opposition to provide evidence of coercion, instead of merely assuming it.
The point about states existing not to provide services but to exercise power is very good, but in one sense, that’s still a ‘so what’ type of statement. Accepting the illegitimacy of the state or its origins hardly seems like a good reason to accept an illegitimate state, even if you think that it is the lesser of evils. I don’t buy into ‘necessary evil’ arguments.

Paul Edwards October 24, 2005 at 6:14 pm

I read CONTRA SPOONER by Colin Williams (http://mises.org/journals/jls/18_3/18_3_1.pdf ), and found it not very convincing. One paragraph I found particularly hard to swallow was where Williams argues that if one wants good habits, one should not object to the government taxing you to fund the effort of teaching you those good habits. Conversely, he argues that if you don’t want to be taught good habits by the state, then you want bad habits, which makes you a “vicious man”. Williams concludes that even “According to Spooner’s own schema, it is perfectly acceptable, even desirable, to wage war against the vicious.”

I find it a pretty dramatic twisting of facts and logic to argue firstly that preferring not to be taught good habits by the state is the same as preferring to acquire bad habits, and secondly, that Spooner believed that possessing bad habits was criminal. The possession of bad habits would more closely proximate indulging in vice, and Spooner clearly states that “Vices are not Crimes”.

Phillip Conti October 25, 2005 at 8:44 am

With all of the articles on anarcho-capitalism, I have yet to see on realistic article on how we achieve it.

Ralph January 10, 2006 at 7:54 am

Regarding corporations and government, I once posed a thought to my third grade niece. Using my hands to describe the rungs of a ladder, I said, “Here is God, who created humans, here are humans, who created government, and here are corporations, created by governments. What is their proper order?”

Popping bubblegum, she answered “God first, then humans, then government, then corporations. So?”

It’s amazing that we have PhDs, Supreme Court Justices, and high officials in government enforcing something that a third grader would recognize as garbage.

The facts are simple enough. Corporations are creations of the state, derive their power from the state, and can exist in no other fashion. Therefore, they should be subject to “the just consent of the governed”.

By implying equality of rights as “Legal Persons” with reference to the 14th Amendment, they make US citizens subject, of necessity, to the same regulations and restrictions that control corporate power. The right of corporations to make private contracts apart from Constitutional law is physically impossible, since their existence is fully dependent on protections given by Constitutional law. Humans, on the other hand, existed prior to the Constitution and made private contracts in lieu of any Constitutional law or existence of US Constitutional law for centuries.

There can be no such thing as private contractual agreement between a person and a state that can by-pass Constitutional law, since both state and corporations are subject exclusively to Constitutional and statutory limitations. The right of contract among humans freely made, under recognition of “higher laws” respecting the rights of all(such as the Ten Commandments) Would not be subject to Constitutional regulation, since humans are not subject to government except in violation of the rights of others. We the people, who “ordain and establish” the Constitution, are clearly in position above both state and corporation, and by right of the First Amendment, can clearly place God above power of the state.

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