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Source link: http://archive.mises.org/7551/victims-on-trial-the-everyday-business-of-courts/

Victims on Trial: The Everyday Business of Courts

December 17, 2007 by

JustitiaIn a courtroom packed with purported criminals, not even one of the people who appeared before the judge was a danger to society. Nearly all were in for victimless crimes.

The two who had perpetrated actual crimes — petty theft from Wal-Mart and the local mall — could have easily been dealt with without involving the state. So far as I could tell, the place could have been emptied out completely and our little community would have been no worse off, and massive human suffering could have been avoided.

But that’s not the way it works. These people, overwhelmingly black and poor but dressed very nicely in the hope of impressing the master, found themselves entangled in the web and thereby elicited the glare and killer instinct of the spider. How painful it was to watch and not be able to do anything about it. FULL ARTICLE

{ 89 comments }

David Van Der Klauw December 20, 2007 at 7:34 pm

I have a good understanding of the scarce resource of the human body and how people fight over resources. At this point I don’t wish to discuss the human body, I wish to discuss the example of the tree on the island.

You say “you have every right to _defend_ your own property against theft from others, since you have expended labour and time to make first-use of it. There is nothing unjust about defensive force. You may trade anything you appropriate”

This is the at the heart of my issue with the religious types that post on Mises.org. I asked you three simple questions and you have posted a religious statement that uses terms such as “every right” “own property” “theft” “unjust”. You guys have developed a complex religion, but can’t answer very simple questions from a very simple example.

In the example I wish to set-aside some trees so that nobody is allowed to touch them until they grow to full size. There is to be NO LABOUR EXPENDED until the trees reach full size. The only labour expended is that when I see someone trying to cut it down, I will run over there and threaten them with violence or use force to stop them. There has been no first-use of the tree. I want to stop other people from making first-use of the tree when it is small so that I can make first-use of the tree when it has grown big enough for me.

Three questions remain unanswered.

anonymous December 20, 2007 at 7:45 pm

“Allowing victims of crimes to unceremoniously punish criminals themselves (known as ‘lynching’)”

Of course, since it’s the state’s ceremony that matters.

Very much so. Habeus Corpus, a fair trial, right to speak in ones defense, freedom from forced confessions, witnesses, right to a lawyer, right to a jury trial, all very important rights in the Constitution and the European law that preceded it. None of that is guaranteed under anarchy.

Again, people don’t need your license to secure themselves.

Wrong! Security guards, police officers, and gun owners today must undergo background checks, drugs tests, etc., and rightfully so. The sanity of the guy at the trigger is not guaranteed under anarchy.

How many times have you been directly affected by “gang warfare”? How much of it is CREATED by the unconstitutional “controlled substances” criminal statutes?

Drugs ruin lives, that is, when they do not take lives. It is the duty of government to keep them away from people. Don’t try to rebut me based on “freedom”; drug users are NOT free.

It’s also called arbitration. And it’s not corrupt if it’s mutually voluntary.

Laws against murder, theft, and fraud are not voluntary, and neither is enforcement. Why would a criminals voluntary be tried?

“Allowing these ‘security forces’ to purchase tanks, rockets, and heavy artillery, and make use of them at their own discretion (kind of like terrorists)”

Sounds like government to me.

When was the last time you were shot by a member of the U.S. Armed Forces? My guess is, not anytime in recent history. The government is restrained by the Constitution (Bill of Rights), the courts (judges and juries), voters, rule of law, and the like. Under anarchy, none of that would exist. However, your next door neighbor would be allowed to purchase as many RPGs as he’d like, all for hunting and self defense, of course.

I see. Birthright. You have the right to force me to educate you. Lovely.

Cute. Universal education helps children of poor families become middle-class men and women. It also helps the economy by supplying and educated workforce (as Ayn Rand said, wealth is created by intelligent minds, not unintelligent laborers who rely on physical exertion for their sustenance). And, it protects American freedom, because wealthy, educated, middle class, free men and women cannot easily be enslaved by the elites (can’t find the James Madison quote at the moment).

Like courts, national defense is above your head at the moment.

Would you, praythee, explain exactly what it is I don’t know?

Inquisitor December 20, 2007 at 7:45 pm

First of all, this is no religion (at least no more than ‘human rights’.) It is ethics. Calling it something it isn’t is not going to get you anywhere with me. Secondly, yes, cutting and growing it IS putting it to first use. What else can it possibly be? You are incorporating it in a praxeological plan; you have interfered with the normal course of nature. You are the first-user and have prevented no one from doing anything they are allowed to do. The only thing they are prevented from is taking it from you. No questions remain unanswered.

Inquisitor December 20, 2007 at 7:49 pm

What sort of libertarian are you Anonymous? It is my decision what *I* put in my body. It is incredible how minarchists (not that you’re one) suddenly forget all their pro-market argumentation when it comes to law and order.

David Van Der Klauw December 20, 2007 at 8:14 pm

Inquisitor, you appear to be completely baffled by the concept of allowing a naturally growing tree to continue to grow naturally until it reaches full height. It does not require any labour or first-use. What don’t you understand about this?

George Gaskell December 20, 2007 at 8:17 pm

In the example I wish to set-aside some trees so that nobody is allowed to touch them until they grow to full size. There is to be NO LABOUR EXPENDED until the trees reach full size.

Property is not originally appropriated (i.e., from nature) by labor. It is appropriated by use, which may be in the form of labor, but may not.

Setting aside the tree (such as to grow it for some later purpose only suitable for tress of sufficient size) is a form of economic use. That alone constitutes an original appropriation of a heretofore unused, unowned thing. Thus, you own it. Thus, you may repel aggressions against your property to the extent necessary.

You may disagree with my answer, but since you have been given an answer, will you now refrain from tossing around that trite “religious” label? It, and you, are really becoming very tiresome.

George Gaskell December 20, 2007 at 8:37 pm

Habeus Corpus, a fair trial, right to speak in ones defense, freedom from forced confessions, witnesses, right to a lawyer, right to a jury trial, all very important rights in the Constitution and the European law that preceded it. None of that is guaranteed under anarchy.

None of them are guaranteed under a State, either, its own self-serving proclamations and propaganda notwithstanding. I have enough experience with habeas corpus and other forms of criminal litigation to know first hand.

And a State, being a compulsory monopoly on the use of force, declares itself to be the one and only arbiter; as such, when it denies such procedural (and substantive) rights to its participants on a daily basis, there is no recourse. Nor is there an alternative for other participants who witness such violations and wish to avoid them in their case.

Neither is a State necessary for there to be good procedures. Procedural appropriateness, efficiency and fairness are all strong selling points for anyone offering private conflict-resolution services.

Wrong! Security guards, police officers, and gun owners today must undergo background checks

No one is debating whether the modern State does these things; the issue is whether it should, or should do anything, really.

The government is restrained by the Constitution

Ha! Dear God! Count the things that the US government does today, and show me where it has the authority to do them. About 95% of its current activities are patently unconstitutional. Statists like you have been inventing all kinds of ways of pretending that such authority exists, until lately when they have given up and now claim that the Constitution is somehow “living.” I guess that means that the government can grant itself powers, or some such nonsense.

Universal education helps children of poor families become middle-class men and women.

If it’s so patently beneficial, then convince me to pay for it voluntarily. You can’t, because it isn’t, certainly not in the modern feed-lot gladiator-academy prisons that we call “public school.” So, you resort to force, and then tell me that it’s for the greater good.

Would you, praythee, explain exactly what it is I don’t know?

Read Brent’s link above re: the Myth of National Defense. It’s free.

David Van Der Klauw December 20, 2007 at 8:49 pm

Great answer there George.
So under your “proposed system” the owner is the first person to use, labour on, or claim a natural resource. Is this correct? Does your system have a government to decide on any disputed claims? eg What if one person started claiming stuff, and other people then said “oh but we had planned to do such and such with it”

Another question I have: What if an individual or gang does not respect the first claim and tries to take the resource for its own use. Does your system involve a powerful gang using force against these other people, or does the owner have to fight for it all alone?

TLWP Sam December 21, 2007 at 1:02 am

Actually, D.V.D.K. there’d really be no such thing as ‘anarchism’ as such thing there are many kinds of ‘-arhies’. Nonetheless Lew Rockell blurted out a more honest realisation that there’d still be “natural hierarchies” in a Libertarian society. A lot of talk here isn’t about ‘-archies’ verus anarchy rather it public versus private ‘-archies’ or those who are right to lead and makes rules and those who aren’t.

anonymous December 21, 2007 at 2:25 am

None of [the rights previously mentioned] are guaranteed under a State, either, its own self-serving proclamations and propaganda notwithstanding.

Yes they are “guaranteed” by the Bill of Rights, the Miranda rights, legal precedence, the rule of law, etc.

You claim that Constitutional rights are dead and buried. Well, guess what. They are alive and strong. Count the people who make a living criticizing the government. Count the activists in history who have engaged in civil disobedience and changed the system. Count the times that an unpopular government official is removed from office by We The People. Count the times a government scandal sees the light of day. Look at the grassroots support for ending the Fed system and the CIA by electing Ron Paul, by far the most popular candidate and our future President. Count the times a person sues the government (or is sued by the government) and wins.

Remember Wen Ho Lee? The nuclear scientist falsely charged with espionage? He is a free man who, last I heard, was pursuing a multi-million-dollar suit against the media for slander, invasion of privacy, etc. When asked if his negative experience caused him to dislike America, he said that if he were accused of such a thing in his homeland, he would be dead.

I can’t find it right now, but there was a case at the Supreme Court, Rumsfeld vs. a Guantanamo prisoner. The prisoner claimed he had a right to a trial in a civilian court of law, and WON. The Supreme Court ruled against the top military official of the country, in favor of a prisoner of war. Think about that.

Remember Ruby Ridge? The government was taken to court after the murder and lost. Even the almighty FBI has to answer for its actions in a court of law, to hear the victim’s accusations, and accept the condemnation of the jury, ordinary citizens like you and me.

Count the number of American citizens imprisoned for holding “wrong opinions” or “opposing revolution,” or similar charges. Count the journalists executed for publishing information the government did not approve of. Count the number of military coups that have taken place in America. Count the number of people executed without trial. Can you find any? America is a free country, and I’m proud to be a citizen. America has been a bastion of freedom, human rights, social equality, free enterprise, and scientific progress for centuries.

And don’t call me a “statist”. If I were, I would not be exulting over all of the people’s triumphs, now would I?

“The government is us; we are the government, you and I.” Theodore Roosevelt

Obviously, the system needs some serious improvement, but it is by far the best in the world.

God bless America.

Inquisitor December 21, 2007 at 7:20 am

“Inquisitor, you appear to be completely baffled by the concept of allowing a naturally growing tree to continue to grow naturally until it reaches full height. It does not require any labour or first-use. What don’t you understand about this?”

You seem utterly baffled by the notion of emborderment and first-use. From the minute you emborder the tree and put it to use, it is yours. Verbal declarations will not suffice, that much is true. So long as you take some action to put the tree to use, it is yours.

Inquisitor December 21, 2007 at 7:28 am

Anonymous, could you please explain how socialized provision of law and order escapes the calculation problem and the typical characteristics of a legal monopoly?

Inquisitor December 21, 2007 at 7:36 am

PS: I agree with both of George’s recent posts.

George Gaskell December 21, 2007 at 8:16 am

Count the people who make a living criticizing the government. Count the activists in history who have engaged in civil disobedience and changed the system. Count the times that an unpopular government official is removed from office by We The People. Count the times a government scandal sees the light of day. Look at the grassroots support for ending the Fed system and the CIA by electing Ron Paul, by far the most popular candidate and our future President. Count the times a person sues the government (or is sued by the government) and wins.

Count the people who do not criticize, or actively resist, the thefts and infringements perpetrated by government for fear of retaliation. Count the unpopular officials, and the policies that are implemented without the consent of the person affected. Count the scandals, thefts and corrupt practices that remain hidden. Look at the grassroots support for presidents like Lincoln (an invader, mass murderer and war criminal) or FDR (socialist, who caused unmeasured suffering by seizing control over people’s economic lives and thereby causing the Depression to worsen and persist). Count the deprivations, assaults and thefts by government that are never challenged because government declares itself to be immune.

You cannot only count what is seen. You must also account for what is unseen. You clearly have not read this essay by Bastiat. Please do. Read The Law as well.

And don’t call me a “statist”. If I were, I would not be exulting over all of the people’s triumphs, now would I?

You believe that a State is necessary to provide law, protect people, etc. I believe your exact words were “We need the State to create and enforce the law.”

That makes you a statist.

TLWP Sam December 21, 2007 at 8:53 am

“count the people who do not criticize, or actively resist, the thefts and infringements perpetrated by government for fear of retaliation . . .”

Well, I’ll definitely call myself a Statist if it makes you happy. But definitely you, G. Gaskell, and Inquistor are best described as Socio-Economic Darwinists. After all, how long are those who ‘afraid of the guvmint’ going to last in the free-for-all of anarchism? Those who afraid to stand up in a Democratic where they have avenues for recourse are going to get chewed up and spat out in anarcho-topia. The unseen that anarchos miss is the weak have recourses in a decent society but I’m sure Darwinists have no time for the weak.

Inquisitor December 21, 2007 at 8:55 am

TWLP, when you’re done with the strawmen, maybe I’ll grace you with a response. Until then, happy trolling.

TLWP Sam December 21, 2007 at 9:06 am

Strawman, snoreman, whatever . . .

G. Gaskell definitely comes out with some doosies that makes minarcho-Libbers look like Communists by comparison.

Inquisitor December 21, 2007 at 9:24 am

You have an over-active imagination.

George Gaskell December 21, 2007 at 9:26 am

Great answer there George.

Thank you. The sole purpose of my existence is to win your approval.

So under your “proposed system” the owner is the first person to use, labour on, or claim a natural resource. Is this correct?

No. You treat “use”, “labor” and “claim” as though they are interchangeable. To acquire ownership of previously-unowned property, you must be the first to use it. That can (and often is) in the form of labor. Doing so gives you a legitimate claim.

Merely verbalizing an empty “claim” is rather meaningless. I can claim that I own the lump of meat that sits on your shoulders, but in a decent society, that claim is trumped by the fact that you have a superior claim to it, i.e., you already own that head of yours because you are using it (even if the use to which you put it seems somewhat suspect).

Alex S December 21, 2007 at 1:18 pm

I can’t find it right now, but there was a case at the Supreme Court, Rumsfeld vs. a Guantanamo prisoner. The prisoner claimed he had a right to a trial in a civilian court of law, and WON.

There was a case of Mr. Dimitrov vs. nazi Germany. He was acused of arson of Reichstag. And Dimitrov WON.

It was on 9/21/33 when Hitler was a Chancellor of Germany. And was actively pushing for panishment of Dimitrov.

Anonymous,
most of you examples of pre-911 era are good nevertheless. We are still better of then the most of the world.

anonymous December 21, 2007 at 5:13 pm

1) We needs laws.

2) It logically follows that we need laws enforced.

3) An entity that makes and enforces laws is, by definition, government.

4) I would gladly take our government over any other, in spite of its flaws.

David Van Der Klauw December 21, 2007 at 5:20 pm

George,
Thanks for clarifying the situation regarding claims and use of natural resources.
Does your system need a government to keep a record of who owns what natural resources, and to rule on any disputes?

Scott D December 21, 2007 at 5:33 pm

Scott D
You have given a very interesting idea for preventing shoplifters from going into certain stores.

Thanks for the compliment. I don’t think it’s all that original or creative. I just wanted to point out the untapped potential of casual crime prevention by private enterprise.

One problem is that a big shop has little incentive to give a fair go to a tiny minority. Walmart might decide to ban all blacks from drugsville where 99% of people are thieves. This makes economic sense but is very unfair to Mr and Mrs NiceBlack who never stole a thing in their life.

Is this a realistic example, or a contrivance to prove a point? If 99% of a certain group of people acts a certain way, then yes, I think it might be reasonable from a risk-assessment viewpoint to exclude 100% of that group. I also think that the remaining 1% would create a nice niche market for another retailer who can’t compete with Wal-mart otherwise.

I have heard of real estate agents who blacklist bad tenants. Great idea, but when they make a mistake and blacklist a nice family, the agents have little incentive to go to the trouble of straightening out the error. Govt can ban the use of unfair blacklists and solve the problem created by this market.

You say “created by the market.” Don’t you mean “created by human error?” We have to accept that there will be errors made. Government puts innocent people on trial all the time, some are convicted, and we only know about those who are later exonerated.

Nevertheless, it is in the best interests of the real estate agents to keep their records as accurate as possible so that both the best and worst candidates are identified. If people are wrongfully blacklisted, a mechanism is likely to develop to allow them to regain good status, in much the same way that it is possible to rebuild credit.

Food supply is a basic human need. There is a danger that shops might monopolise the food supply (within a 10km region in a city) and then make a blacklisting mistake and make it very hard for an innocent person to live in that area.

As I said, mistakes happen, in the private and the public sector. Usually there is a means of solving these errors. Just as stores cannot afford to price every item in their shelves so that every conceivable customer can afford to purchase them, they may not be able to perfect the system so that every innocent person will have access to the store.

Tough luck, I say. That’s what the state says when it makes a mistake that is too costly to fix. If you expect perfection at all times from the market, I think it is not unreasonable for me to expect perfection from the government. The difference is that, without a monopoly, there is the chance for a competing market solution to arise and handle the mistake.

You also say “If people value it, the market will provide it.” This is religious nonsense.

I had a hard time coming up with anything civil to say about this and the rest of that paragraph. I think that you understood the full meaning of my statement and chose to create a straw man. Going from “If people value it, the market will provide it,” to “The market will give you anything you want,” is a bit of a stretch, don’t you think?

David Van Der Klauw December 22, 2007 at 5:04 am

Scott D, I take your point that cases of the market abusing 1% of the population might turn-out to be less of a problem than present govt abusing 1% of the population in some ways. The example I gave of the tenant blacklist is a serious real-life example. What actually happened is that the family had to stay in crisis charity shelter until they could sort out housing with relatives. Government later banned the blacklist, but other similar tenant databases remain.
I am impressed that you could remain civil to me, but I remain unimpressed with your statment “If people value it, the market will provide it”
My retort “If voters value it, democratically elected government will provide it”
Neither statement is particularly useful.

George Gaskell December 22, 2007 at 7:46 am

I remain unimpressed with your statment “If people value it, the market will provide it” My retort “If voters value it, democratically elected government will provide it” Neither statement is particularly useful.

Both statements are true, even if somewhat imprecise.

There is a critical between the provision of goods by a market and the provision of (supposed) goods by government, and that difference is highlighted by the Calculation Problem.

The market will only provide such goods when, in addition to being wanted, their production is ALSO economically sound. People express their true preferences when they must make economic choices. The same money can’t be spent on two different things. I may want (in a vague, abstract and therefore useless sense) to give my family the best Christmas gifts they have ever seen, but doing so would entail losing our home to foreclosure a few weeks later. That’s economically harmful. Therefore, those extravagant purchases are not made, and the producers of those goods never see that measure of potential sales.

Government exists to provide things (I hesitate to call them “goods”) that are economically unsound. The market does not provide the things that government produces, or else there would be no need for the government to provide them. When the market DOES provide them, the government uses some form of artificial legal restriction to protect its market position.

For example, the government ran mail service back in the 18th century because delivering mail to remote areas was economically unsound, due to the expense. So, the government not only subsidized it, but took over the entire enterprise. Now, there are many large-scale companies that are eager to provide this service, but the US Post Office remains. It only does so because of its legal monopoly on first-class mail delivery.

Government CANNOT provide the goods as the market would. It is not merely difficult. It is impossible. Government can’t calculate, because it has purposely insulated itself from the critical economic information on which to make decisions about what to produce, how, how much, what to charge, etc.

Scott D December 22, 2007 at 10:07 am

I remain unimpressed with your statment “If people value it, the market will provide it”
My retort “If voters value it, democratically elected government will provide it”
Neither statement is particularly useful.

As George Gaskell said, my statement is not precise, and it would need to expand considerably (a few pages, perhaps) to leave you with no doubt of my meaning. It is my attempt to distill down the way markets respond to demand and the concept of division of labor, truths that I find very impressive. As a matter of fact, I believe it is only people who do not understand these concepts that place blind faith in government action.

Here is a delightful essay that will illustrate the point of my statement for you:
I, Pencil

Inquisitor December 22, 2007 at 10:37 am

I already qualified Scott’s statement for him. Markets will provide any good, provided something can be exchanged voluntarily for it and its production is sound. Politicians also provide certain groups with favours; usually via other people’s money (Austrians and public choice economists have marked out the stark difference in how political and catallactic markets function; a good article is this: http://mises.org/daily/2493).

David Van Der Klauw December 23, 2007 at 1:30 am

You are preaching to the converted when you tell me the good things that markets can do. (read I, Pencil long ago) Markets are great and I advocate widespread use of them. My problem is with people who claim that markets are pure freedom and that a “free market” springs up in the absence of government.

This is completely wrong. Markets are the result of a restriction applied by government and require the force of government in order to work. The government is the most powerful gang. Property rights allow weaker individuals or gangs to control resources. This can only happen with the blessing and support (force) of the most powerful gang. Property rights and markets are hence defined by the most powerful gang. Whatever it says goes.

Private property is a restriction. eg Under your proposed system, every human must be restricted from controlling other human’s bodies, and every human must be restricted from controlling any natural resources that are “owned” by other humans. This is a huge restriction that must be placed upon every human. It is nonsense to refer to a restriction as a freedom.

Imagine a dictator who wanted to step-down from power in 5 years and dismantle his controlling force, but first wanted to install a “free market” that would last in his country.
1 – exactly which laws would have to be removed or added to create the “free market” for the first 5 years?
2 – how can this dictator dismantle his government (police,courts,etc) and yet prevent the second most powerful gang from changing the market just created?

Inquisitor December 23, 2007 at 7:29 am

“This is completely wrong.”

This has not been demonstrated. Hoppe’s The Myth of National Defense and Stringham’s Anarchy and the Law demonstrate otherwise.

“It is nonsense to refer to a restriction as a freedom.”

It is nonsense to argue that freedom could exist otherwise. At any rate, the rapist cannot even coherently argue not to be punished, without performatively contradicting themselves in the process (see Kinsella’s estoppel approach). After all, why should they have the ‘freedom’ to rape and not expect retaliation in kind?

rick madders December 23, 2007 at 10:23 am

the American legal system is a corrupt money making business,much as all systems of America have become-(government,medical,insurance,etc..).
there is no easy fix for this and the government knows this and is preparing for what is to come soon,the next American Revolution….unfortunate and sad,but nothing else less of will bring change to the monster America has become…

David Van Der Klauw December 23, 2007 at 5:07 pm

I think that freedom is a poor choice of word to use in describing human life. The degree of freedom is the degree of control over resources. Each human seeks to control resources to further his own wellbeing as he defines it.
We currently have a complex set of laws and resultant markets. Some people claim that these markets are not “free markets”. This seems to imply that there would be a particular set of laws that would in fact give free markets. By comparing a given country’s laws with the “free market” laws we could make a judgement about how “free” the country’s markets are.
Could someone point me to the best place to read these “free market” laws.
Put it another way. If an old dying dictator wanted to give his country a “free market” before he died, what laws should he pass. He has one day to live, and has Internet access. Can he do it? Where should he start?

George Gaskell December 23, 2007 at 6:19 pm

I think that freedom is a poor choice of word to use in describing human life.

I think you are confused. “Freedom” and “liberty” refer to freedom from aggression. Freedom from injustice. Freedom from infringement of our rights. Freedom to do as one wishes, except for the freedom to infringe on the life, liberty and property of others.

Any time that one enters the realm of morality and justice, one is talking about right and wrong. “Freedom” does not refer to the absence of restriction altogether, but the absence of unjust restriction. This distinction springs from the idea that the universe of violence can be divided into two categories — the right and the wrong. The principle of reciprocity helps define that line as the difference between aggression and defense, which, one might say, is the first moral rule, the first rule of human civilization — that violence can be either right or wrong.

The kind of “freedom” that you are describing, David, is better known as “the law of the jungle,” which is to say no law at all, save the urge for survival.

David Van Der Klauw December 23, 2007 at 8:26 pm

So if I am following this correctly: The free market gives best freedom and justice. Best freedom is not complete freedom but involves restrictions backed by force/violence – but only if the restriction is good and just – as explained by principle of reciprocity (further study needed).

I certainly am confused by the concept of the free market. I struggle to make sense of it. At first I am told it involves freedom and liberty and is voluntary and requires no government force. But when I dig deeper I find it involves heavy restrictions backed up by force and violence.

If we are to transition from today’s society to a “free market” with no government then I would expect a two-stage process:
1 – change laws to create the “free market”. Existing government enforces these laws for a while
2 – disband the government but somehow stop the second most powerful gang from spoiling the “free market”

I can not understand how either of these could be done:
1 – where can I find the list of laws that create a “free market” (a list that mises people generally agree on)
2 – how to stop the most powerful gang from replacing the free market with what it wants (in the absence of more-powerful government)

VANESSA December 23, 2007 at 10:35 pm

I SAY AMEN!!!! there is intelligence on this planet. i’ve been saying this for a long time and no one listens. they’re lives are going great, they live in the suburbs and don’t have a care in the world about the corruption and abuse going on right under their noses. the “it’s not my problem” attitude is finally starting to become the “what’s the problem”. YES!!!!! about time.

anonymous January 8, 2008 at 3:51 am

I already listed 12 major problems with an anarchy system. Here are a few more:

13) Increased crimes against the elderly. The elderly would be the least capable of physically warding off attack, and the least capable of paying for private protection. The threat of state retribution is the only thing that could keep miscreants from attacking feeble old grandmas (not that that always works).

14) Increased bigotry against minorities. If it were not for the U.S. government, slavery would not have been stopped; lynchings would still be taking place; the civil rights act would have never been passed; we would still have fountains that say white and black. All of the practices were stopped by laws, by propaganda, and by force. If you have seen the documentaries, you know that the only way black kids could go to school in the deep south was under the shadow of an American soldier.

15) The Evil Empire would still be going strong, with global reach. If it were not for American foreign aid to non-communist governments, American military forces defending free (and sometimes not-so-free) nations against communist aggression, the threat of American nukes, and the space race and arms race which helped bankrupt the Soviets, the USSR would still be alive today, and probably in your backyard.

Curt Howland January 8, 2008 at 9:47 am

Hey Anon, I have to admit it’s an impressive list of fearmongering you’ve got there.

Since the “elderly” are both the poorest, and wealthiest, demographic, why do you expect greater attacks against them? Since carrying of weapons is allowed to be the decision of the individual, and the wealthy already have private police and guarded living spaces, it is exactly the “poor” who are given greater latitude in self defense and therefore attacks against them decrease. A dead mugger cannot be a repeat offender.

Bigotry is inside a person. Having the state say “Bad kitty, bad bad!” doesn’t make bigotry go away. So this assertion is unsupportable.

Maybe you missed how governments are what made slavery profitable (by placing the costs of tracking down escaped slaves on the taxpayer).

In those documentaries you cite (likely “Forest Gump”) did you fail to notice that they were _government_ schools? Yeah, you forgot to mention that.

Sorry, but your point 15 is insane. The “Evil Empire” is the American empire. There is no other global empire. So reducing the power of the American government has the instant result of reducing the “Evil Empire”‘s power.

This is a good thing.

TLWP Sam January 8, 2008 at 11:42 pm

‘Slavery is only available under guvmint’? Yeah right! If slave-owners valued slaves there’d a open market for returning escaped slaves. Assuming there is such a thing as slavery of course.

anonymous January 9, 2008 at 1:52 am

Sorry, but your point 15 is insane. The “Evil Empire” is the American empire.

Would you rather be living in a communist gulag? I don’t think the Soviets would be very tolerant of anarcho-capitalist bloggers within their reach. And with their Marxist ideology of sabotage and conquest, and their Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles, you definitely would be within their reach.

Why doesn’t anybody understand this?

There is no other global empire.

Nope. Not anymore.

(grins snidely)

p.S. I never said that the presence of government prevents bigotry in people’s minds. Government does, however, prevent people from acting on that bigotry on a massive scale. To pretend that it would disappear without the government’s intervention (or existence, for that matter) is fallacious at best. It took years of government intervention, and military force, to eradicate the near-universal ethnic strife and human rights abuses.

Inquisitor January 9, 2008 at 7:56 am

And yet they persist, perhaps worse than ever before. Wonderful. Government has been, is and will always be the worst perpetrator of bigotry and crime.

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