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Source link: http://archive.mises.org/4745/the-failure-of-government-justice/

The Failure of Government Justice

March 1, 2006 by

It’s often a heartbreaking story, writes T. Norman Van Cott. It’s also a repeating story: people on parole and probation committing yet more crimes. Thousands each year. Those foisting these parolees and probationers on us pollute our social environment. The only answer is a complete privization of prison and parole. That would change the incentives. FULL ARTICLE


Paul Edwards March 3, 2006 at 1:27 pm


“But logic is dangerous. It can make you believe silly stuff that is wrong…”

you will do well then to continue to avoid it!

(just kidding)

but those holding this view,

“…it is good that “austrian” economists, who would abolish democracy, let people starve en masse, and commit who knows what other atrocities all on the basis that “man acts” or some other crazy reason, do not run our societies.”

should read “Death by Government”, and a little Austrian theory for kicks as well.


averros March 3, 2006 at 5:19 pm

SteamshipTime – you may agree or you may disagree with me, but you cannot do anything with the logic of the argument.

Rothbard (who came up with the argument) believed in the abhorrence of abortions (so do I if you wish to know), but he had more integrity and honesty than most, and didn’t willingly make exceptions for uncomfortable truths.

The uncomfortable truth in this case being that prohibiting abortion makes a pregnant woman into a slave of her fetus, oblidged to provide shelter and feed with, literally, parts of her body, a human being with whom she has no voluntary agreement to do so. Once you say that this kind of slavery is permitted, based on the need of the beneficiary and not on the voluntary exchange, then you cannot deny those who claim that bums have rights to demand that you shelter and feed them, without being a hypocrite.

It would be much better for everyone if people stopped confusing morality (which does not have to be logical and is always based on some faith) and the law (which *must* be logical to be effective and universal).

You also totally missed the point on voluntary segregation – in the case of abortions people who believe them to be wrong may form a community which ostracises anyone who aborts or performs abortions (or even speaks about abortions), effectively sending transgressors to exile. But the natural law says that this is the maximal punishment which can be imposed by any community for the deviation from community’s morals. This punishment is non-violent, and does not involve throwing stones (I hope you remember what I’m alluding to).

Or do you advocate burning at the stake women who aborted? Throwing them into prisons? Beating them up? Stoning? What punishment your communal law is supposed to mete out? A law controls violence – and violence is the only way to ensure compliance with any law. So if you make anything into a law, you must be prepared to uphold it by means of violence.

I’m sorry to say that but your insistence on the enforcement of morals by means of violence merely serves to show that you’re not secure in the knowledge of superiority of your beliefs, and that you are afraid that ways of unbelievers will be more successful, or too tempting. In other words, you’re not strong in your faith and afraid to admit it to yourself – and that prevents you from making the first step to finding your true faith.

SteamshipTime March 5, 2006 at 10:45 am


“But the natural law says that this is the maximal punishment which can be imposed by any community for the deviation from community’s morals.”

What natural law? Is this in a book somewhere?

Pedophiles, for example, should not be exiled. They should simply be killed.

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