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General Category => General Discussion => Topic started by: Mark Stoval on March 01, 2012, 06:49:38 AM



Title: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: Mark Stoval on March 01, 2012, 06:49:38 AM
It was an odd week for me. I saw the nice post on the front page here by the young fellow who is a Christian anarchist. In the same week I discovered another anarchist site (or so they say) and was told that I was "not welcome around here" since I mentioned Rothbard in some context or the other.

The two events got me to thinking about real anarchism. The heart of it is that the anarchist does not believe in gangs using force or coercion to enforce their desires on the rest of us. I don't care what the gang calls itself: mafia, church, or government.

I could be the most devout Roman Catholic in the world, but as long as I don't try to use aggression against others then I could be a fabulous anarchist. If I think that communes are the best way to go then I could try to set one up or join one that is already in existence (if they would have me). I cross the line when I join with others to force you to live as I do, or as I don't but think you should.

So, I am wondering why some so-called anarchists think that other anarchists are "not welcome here" if their vision of a perfect world does not match exactly with the crowd. Is it like the religious nut who can only stand you if you agree with every single tenet of his religion?

We are living in a world where country after country is a tyranny or becoming one. Seems to me that even the libertarian who believes that a small government is needed is still a valuable ally: and certainly anyone who agrees with the non-aggression principle is my ally. No?


Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: derick on March 01, 2012, 09:13:05 AM
I think many so called anarchists use anarchy as a front to cover up their real intentions. The Occupy movement is a prime example of this. They seem to have a twisted idea of fairness, rights and equality, that in their eyes the only way to accomplish this is through force. How can they claim to have the NAP at the center of what they believe and want to use force to get what they want? They cant, so they exclude anyone that points out this inconsistency.


Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: dpalme on March 01, 2012, 12:41:51 PM
I think many so called anarchists use anarchy as a front to cover up their real intentions. The Occupy movement is a prime example of this. They seem to have a twisted idea of fairness, rights and equality, that in their eyes the only way to accomplish this is through force. How can they claim to have the NAP at the center of what they believe and want to use force to get what they want? They cant, so they exclude anyone that points out this inconsistency.

The occupy movement is a perfect example. They use the front of "everyone is equal" but shoot down ideas that oppose theirs. People who can't see other standpoints are just as bad/the same as the system their angry at.


Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: Mark Stoval on March 01, 2012, 03:31:07 PM
I think many so called anarchists use anarchy as a front to cover up ... How can they claim to have the NAP at the center of what they believe and want to use force to get what they want? ...

Spot on. It reminds me of the old joke, "the beatings will continue until moral improves!"

We are to live by the non-aggression axiom and use only our powers of persuasion to get others to do as we would have them do. I recall that Rothbard was really radical on his ideas of what would be legal in his ideal libertarian world concerning abortion and child rearing; but pointed out that what was to be legal was not the same thing as what was moral. (well, not necessarily the same thing)

The "golden rule" that most religions claim says that I should not use force on anyone else since I sure don't want someone to use force on me. When people come to realize this ancient wisdom is the way to live; anarchy may get a fair trial.




Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: Mark Stoval on March 01, 2012, 03:40:30 PM
The occupy movement is a perfect example. They use the front of "everyone is equal" but shoot down ideas that oppose theirs. People who can't see other standpoints are just as bad/the same as the system their angry at.

Boy that is the truth. I can't even figure out exactly what the movement wants. I can't figure out what the country would look like after they have "won". But I can see that a movement that arrogantly purports to represent 99% of all Americans sure does not represent me on a host of issues!

I don't believe anarchists will "win" in the streets. I believe we will win in the mind. I believe our ideas are right and we will prevail someday by the power of persuasion.



Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: JustSayNoToStatism on March 01, 2012, 05:19:07 PM
@Mark Stoval:

I don't entirely agree. The truth is that if you abstract far enough, then market anarchists endorse violence as well. Property rights are "enforced through the barrel of a gun." If you don't accept property rights, then any attempt to use violence in defense of them is seen as aggression. Likewise, if you do accept property rights, then their efforts to steal from us are seen as aggression.

Therefore, the violence argument fails. The only way we can really argue with them is to discuss the merits of a free market system. State up front what your values are, and why market anarchism achieves them.

^I believe this is the most important recent change in my own intellectual development.


Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: derick on March 01, 2012, 07:40:30 PM
I don't entirely agree. The truth is that if you abstract far enough, then market anarchists endorse violence as well. Property rights are "enforced through the barrel of a gun." If you don't accept property rights, then any attempt to use violence in defense of them is seen as aggression.

I do not follow your logic here, are we to worry about how self defense could be viewed as aggression, when it clearly is not aggression? I believe that I am my own property and I have a right to defend my property, even if I must do so with a gun. Just our existence could be viewed (and is viewed by many) to be violence, what I mean is, you can not spend one day on this earth without commiting violence against something or at least without someone making that claim.


Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: Alricaus on March 01, 2012, 08:15:30 PM
Hi there,

It's make a while since my last post (to busy right now ...).


Quote
I don't entirely agree. The truth is that if you abstract far enough, then market anarchists endorse violence as well. Property rights are "enforced through the barrel of a gun." If you don't accept property rights, then any attempt to use violence in defense of them is seen as aggression. Likewise, if you do accept property rights, then their efforts to steal from us are seen as aggression.

Therefore, the violence argument fails. The only way we can really argue with them is to discuss the merits of a free market system. State up front what your values are, and why market anarchism achieves them.

^I believe this is the most important recent change in my own intellectual development.

Completely agree with you on that!!! It reminded me somehow the debate I had concerning the notion of freedom.

However, giving the ''moral nature'' of a lot of political arguments, It's my guess that this argument will not be very popular  >:(


Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: JustSayNoToStatism on March 01, 2012, 10:35:26 PM
I don't entirely agree. The truth is that if you abstract far enough, then market anarchists endorse violence as well. Property rights are "enforced through the barrel of a gun." If you don't accept property rights, then any attempt to use violence in defense of them is seen as aggression.

I do not follow your logic here, are we to worry about how self defense could be viewed as aggression, when it clearly is not aggression? I believe that I am my own property and I have a right to defend my property, even if I must do so with a gun. Just our existence could be viewed (and is viewed by many) to be violence, what I mean is, you can not spend one day on this earth without commiting violence against something or at least without someone making that claim.
We are not to worry about anything. Hakuna Matata. My point is that your definition of self-defense is not agreed upon. Self defense of person is one thing, defense of property is another. To someone who doesn't see property (or all types of property) the same way as you, your "defense" of property is aggression. Likewise, you see someone's violation of your property as aggression. It's all in how you see property.


Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: derick on March 01, 2012, 11:00:40 PM
I happen to agree with Rothbard on this one. The ability to defend my property, wheather you believe in private property or not, is moral and is rooted in the natural-rights defense of private property.


Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: Will on March 01, 2012, 11:43:16 PM
I happen to agree with Rothbard on this one. The ability to defend my property, wheather you believe in private property or not, is moral and is rooted in the natural-rights defense of private property.

Good luck trying to convince an Anarcho-communist of this. They literally believe that the existence of private property is an act of aggression against those without capital and that this is morally wrong. While their arguments in defense of this are often ladden with false dichotomies, they arent as dimwitted as we would like to believe. Thats why this:

Quote
...discuss the merits of a free market system. State up front what your values are, and why market anarchism achieves them.

...is the only way forward while arguing with them.



Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: JustSayNoToStatism on March 02, 2012, 01:52:16 AM
I happen to agree with Rothbard on this one. The ability to defend my property, wheather you believe in private property or not, is moral and is rooted in the natural-rights defense of private property.
I think elsewhere on this forum I've done a good job of attacking not only NAP and natural rights, but the very possibility of coming up with a theory of natural rights that can support propertarianism in an objective way. People who want to believe in natural rights are going to do so because it supports their libertarian beliefs. You sure aren't going to be able to use them very effectively against someone who doesn't already share your perspective (even in the one successful conversion I have done, the self-ownership derivation of the NAP didn't get a very enthusiastic reception). I see it as willfully deluding ourselves into thinking that somehow our way is "right." I say "we" because I used to do it too. But the closer you look, the more you'll see that the magical goodness that libertarians attach to property is exactly what an anarcho-communist once described it as when I was debating with him: vacuous.

The place where libertarians win is in history, economics, etc. When you get into the nature of property debates and try to say property is "correct" you get into a quagmire, because you cannot consistently lay out a theory of what makes something property. It's better to confess this up front.
1) People you debate against will be impressed for your open mindedness and lack of "dogma,"
2) You will have shed the fuzziness of the moral side of the debate, and now all that's left is the more concrete subjects, where we absolutely annihilate the statists and anti-propertarians.

It's a recipe for market anarchist invincibility, in my opinion.


Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: Mark Stoval on March 02, 2012, 04:07:32 AM
I think elsewhere on this forum I've done a good job of attacking not only NAP and natural rights, but the very possibility of coming up with a theory of natural rights that can support propertarianism in an objective way.

Could you please point out where this "good job" is? I figure that we will argue about this one and so I might as well not make you repeat yourself but read it wherever on the board your position is best stated.



Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: derick on March 02, 2012, 08:37:44 AM
I think elsewhere on this forum I've done a good job of attacking not only NAP and natural rights, but the very possibility of coming up with a theory of natural rights that can support propertarianism in an objective way. People who want to believe in natural rights are going to do so because it supports their libertarian beliefs. You sure aren't going to be able to use them very effectively against someone who doesn't already share your perspective (even in the one successful conversion I have done, the self-ownership derivation of the NAP didn't get a very enthusiastic reception). I see it as willfully deluding ourselves into thinking that somehow our way is "right." I say "we" because I used to do it too. But the closer you look, the more you'll see that the magical goodness that libertarians attach to property is exactly what an anarcho-communist once described it as when I was debating with him: vacuous.

The place where libertarians win is in history, economics, etc. When you get into the nature of property debates and try to say property is "correct" you get into a quagmire, because you cannot consistently lay out a theory of what makes something property. It's better to confess this up front.
1) People you debate against will be impressed for your open mindedness and lack of "dogma,"
2) You will have shed the fuzziness of the moral side of the debate, and now all that's left is the more concrete subjects, where we absolutely annihilate the statists and anti-propertarians.

It's a recipe for market anarchist invincibility, in my opinion.

Do you define property as land only? I do not, I believe that the product of my labor is my property also. Because there is only so much labor in me, the product of my labor is part of me, and therfore my property, not yours, ours or some governmental agency. The American government didnt believe in property rights either, as it made claim to Indian lands and the resources in, on them. The Indians didnt own these lands by title or through a system of property rights but through occupying them for thousands of years.

I guess I dont understand how property rights and the right to defend them, wouldnt be at the center of any capitalist system.


Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: JustSayNoToStatism on March 02, 2012, 06:03:04 PM
Do you define property as land only? I do not, I believe that the product of my labor is my property also.
Lots of things can be property. I don't think I ever said that only land was property...

Quote
Because there is only so much labor in me, the product of my labor is part of me, and therfore my property, not yours, ours or some governmental agency.
Yeah, I've heard this before. Like I said in my previous post, I used the derivation of the NAP from the principle of self-ownership in the process of converting someone to market anarchism. But that was only a first step, to get a dialogue going. If you are converting someone intelligent enough, they'll quickly poke a lot of holes in that argument, and you'll have to brush it off by saying that it's just a mental exercise to get them thinking.

Quote
I guess I dont understand how property rights and the right to defend them, wouldnt be at the center of any capitalist system.
I'm not trying to say they wouldn't be at the center of the system. What I'm saying is that the decision to respect someone else's property rights or not, is just that, a decision. So living in a propertarian society is a privilege, not a right. We would be fortunate to live in a world where these are respected, but there is nothing to stop someone from coming and taking your "natural rights" away. Natural rights theory, in my experience, usually involves trying to show that property is some heavenly ordained system of human cooperation. There is no divine endorsement. So when I use the term property rights, I am not speaking in a natural rights framework.


Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: David Giessel on March 02, 2012, 07:23:11 PM
JSNTS: At some point you made a well reasoned argument that "rights do not exist." I thought about this for a while and now agree with your conclusion. This has been a massively liberating way to view the world (as opposed to the futility of "rights" based arguments in the face of said "unalienable rights" having been completely alienated).

Thanks for that. The mind stretching that goes on here is my favorite part of this forum.


Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: Seth King on March 02, 2012, 07:56:13 PM
JSNTS: At some point you made a well reasoned argument that "rights do not exist." I thought about this for a while and now agree with your conclusion. This has been a massively liberating way to view the world (as opposed to the futility of "rights" based arguments in the face of said "unalienable rights" having been completely alienated).

Thanks for that. The mind stretching that goes on here is my favorite part of this forum.

http://dailyanarchist.com/2010/07/29/what-rights-means-to-me/


Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: David Giessel on March 02, 2012, 09:44:48 PM
Oops, looks like it was in fact you Seth who got me thinking that direction first.

That was the first thing I ever read here I think (but we've established that I have a pretty bad memory).


Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: JustSayNoToStatism on March 02, 2012, 11:30:57 PM
Oops, looks like it was in fact you Seth who got me thinking that direction first.

That was the first thing I ever read here I think (but we've established that I have a pretty bad memory).
Yeah. I've been against the idea of rights for a while now, but not that long. I wasn't even an anarchist when the article was published.


Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: Tom J on March 03, 2012, 02:48:34 PM
JSNTS: At some point you made a well reasoned argument that "rights do not exist." I thought about this for a while and now agree with your conclusion. This has been a massively liberating way to view the world (as opposed to the futility of "rights" based arguments in the face of said "unalienable rights" having been completely alienated).

Thanks for that. The mind stretching that goes on here is my favorite part of this forum.

As I see it, a “right”, outside of the legal context, refers to what one thinks they and usually certain other people ought to or should be able to do without obstruction from other humans; for whatever reason, be it religious, a matter of conscience, or something else. And it’s simply the reality, that there are certain things in most (if not all) peoples lives that they believe they ought to or should be able to do.


Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: Tom J on March 03, 2012, 03:06:20 PM


Good luck trying to convince an Anarcho-communist of this.
...



"Anarcho-communist"? What's your definition of anarchist?


Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: Argus on March 03, 2012, 03:42:15 PM
JSNTS: At some point you made a well reasoned argument that "rights do not exist." I thought about this for a while and now agree with your conclusion. This has been a massively liberating way to view the world (as opposed to the futility of "rights" based arguments in the face of said "unalienable rights" having been completely alienated).

Thanks for that. The mind stretching that goes on here is my favorite part of this forum.

Agreed. It seems as if "rights" are in the same category as "sin" -- both are human-created mental constructs. If I homestead a piece of land that happens to be in the middle of a large pack of extremely ravenous grizzlies, I'll find out quickly how illusory are my assertion of "rights."

Yes, I know grizzlies don't run in packs but, c'mon..that sounds more badass than wolves or coyotes.

Peace
Argus (who is without sin)


Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: Will on March 03, 2012, 04:10:06 PM
Good luck trying to convince an Anarcho-communist of this.
...

"Anarcho-communist"? What's your definition of anarchist?

Without rulers. Surely you have heard of Anarcho-communism? It's probably been the most popular strand of anarchism for the past century or so. All communists are technically anarchists, the Marxist variety just have this strange idea that the best way to achieve this is through a dictatorship that will magically disappear when the populous is ready for it.

Anarcho-communists reject this crazy notion and just want to jump right into it. Some of them are statists in disguise that just like breaking things, but they're not all like that. They're certainly anarchists by any traditional definition of the word.


Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: Tom J on March 03, 2012, 11:38:01 PM

Agreed. It seems as if "rights" are in the same category as "sin" -- both are human-created mental constructs. If I homestead a piece of land that happens to be in the middle of a large pack of extremely ravenous grizzlies, I'll find out quickly how illusory are my assertion of "rights."

Yes, I know grizzlies don't run in packs but, c'mon..that sounds more badass than wolves or coyotes.

Peace
Argus (who is without sin)

Just scare off or kill the "ravenous grizzlies". A “right” doesn’t have to require no labor.


Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: Mark Stoval on March 04, 2012, 06:47:13 AM
... Agreed. It seems as if "rights" are in the same category as "sin" -- both are human-created mental constructs. If I homestead a piece of land that happens to be in the middle of a large pack of extremely ravenous grizzlies, I'll find out quickly how illusory are my assertion of "rights." ...

I read this and I read the post by Seth mentioned above: http://dailyanarchist.com/2010/07/29/what-rights-means-to-me/?_login=9310d1156e

The problem with that post and the "me toos" here in this thread is that there has been no definition of the word "rights" so that we are all on the same page. Take a look at the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy: http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/rights/ There you will see how controversial just the word's definition is! Please note that I am not saying that Stanford has any special place in the debate, only that their page would represent a fairly non-controversial summation of the idea under discussion in Philosophy to us moderns.

I see on that page near the middle that  --- “Right” in its older, objective sense means “what is just” or “what is fair.” --- and that holds true for the modern intuitive concept of the word. Ask a 5th grade child what is a "right" and she will say pretty much the above in whatever words she has at her disposal.  (yes, some of that would come from her parroting her environment no doubt but I think my point holds)

Seth came close to my ideas in his post (link above) when he talked about "rights" being in our mind. I would use "consciousness" but why quibble? Humans have a concept of "rights" and we should understand that the bears mentioned above use their instincts provided by nature (millions of years of evolution) and not reason.  Man is the thinking and reasoning beast. Man has some concept of what he should do to maximize his enjoyment of his time on earth. (and that of the race)

We do have rights. We have the right not to be the victim of aggression. There is no "big daddy in the sky" to enforce the right not to be the victim of aggression and so many people throughout all of history have been victims. You can see victims on the news today if you turn on any main stream news program.

It is "the nature" of humans that there is some way of acting, cooperating, and conducting our affairs that will lead to the most happiness, pleasure, advancement, culture, and so on for the individual and the race. Whatever "those rights" are, we must convince the race that they are, in fact, the inalienable rights of mankind. We must win the battle in the mind before we can prevail.

Enforcement? That comes by society and even if you don't get to enjoy your "rights", they are still yours never the less. Take for example the slave in 1840. We all knew that slavery was wrong and that the man should be free. He had a right to freedom even as he was denied his birthright.

I submit that the right to be free from aggression and coercion is an inalienable human right. I just wish that humanity would come to embrace that right someday.




Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: derick on March 04, 2012, 06:01:11 PM
I agree Mark. I believe that every human being has the right to be free. We are only free up until the point where someone else uses aggression and coercion to take our freedom, or we use our freedom to contract ourselves into bondage. In my opinion if you do not have the right of ownership to the propduct of your labor, you are not free.


Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: Seth King on March 04, 2012, 06:04:08 PM
Well said, Mark. I will agree that the definition of rights makes things more difficult to wrap one's head around.

By your definition then, we are not losing our rights. Nothing the government has done has taken away our rights. And I will agree with that.

But many libertarians, myself included in the past, would claim that the government is taking away our rights. But they are not taking away our rights. Because you still have the right to own a fully automatic weapon in Washington D.C. If some thugs in costume come and kidnap you, however, one should not view it as a violation of your rights. It is merely an act of aggression. If you don't like it you have the right to defend yourself. If you choose not to exercise that right, so be it.

I think if more libertarians viewed it as such they would be more inclined to stop begging for their "rights" back at the ballot box, and instead would start figuring out ways to destroy the entity that keeps aggressing against them.

We're in the mess we're in not because of the lazy majority, or the evil minority. We're in the mess we're in because the libertarians among us keep thinking that they're losing their rights, when in fact they are merely choosing not to exercise those rights and they have adopted the strategy of begging for permission instead of thwarting off the criminal entity that keeps attacking them.


Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: AgoristTeen1994 on March 05, 2012, 03:09:37 AM
Well said, Mark. I will agree that the definition of rights makes things more difficult to wrap one's head around.

By your definition then, we are not losing our rights. Nothing the government has done has taken away our rights. And I will agree with that.

But many libertarians, myself included in the past, would claim that the government is taking away our rights. But they are not taking away our rights. Because you still have the right to own a fully automatic weapon in Washington D.C. If some thugs in costume come and kidnap you, however, one should not view it as a violation of your rights. It is merely an act of aggression. If you don't like it you have the right to defend yourself. If you choose not to exercise that right, so be it.

I think if more libertarians viewed it as such they would be more inclined to stop begging for their "rights" back at the ballot box, and instead would start figuring out ways to destroy the entity that keeps aggressing against them.

We're in the mess we're in not because of the lazy majority, or the evil minority. We're in the mess we're in because the libertarians among us keep thinking that they're losing their rights, when in fact they are merely choosing not to exercise those rights and they have adopted the strategy of begging for permission instead of thwarting off the criminal entity that keeps attacking them.

Agreed Seth.

OH and JSNTS I have a question for you. This isn't mean to be sarcastic and while depending on your answer I may strongly disagree with you and may in fact think your partially amoral...I won't "bash" that opinion. You say there is no such thing as "rights" Well then I have a question for you...since you believe that there are no rights...do you agree with Benjamin R. Tucker that if I were to stop a woman from throwing her baby that she gave birth to into a furnace...that I should be punished for interfering with her property? The main argument I've across to people who do not believe in rights as to why they DISAGREE with that is: The baby shouldn't be thrown into the furnace since it owns itself...so the mother is initiating violence against it..which is wrong. Here is how I have replied to that argument: If there are no rights than how can you say that the baby or anyone owns themselves? Since after all "no rights" includes no property rights...and no property rights means you can't "own" anything...and if you CAN still prove that the baby owns itself...than why is it wrong for the mother to initiate violence against it...after all....there are no rights.

Now again, I am asking that as an honest question and JSNTS I am eager to hear your reply, since after all I am always willing to correct errors in my thinking.


Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: JustSayNoToStatism on March 06, 2012, 03:55:05 PM
You say there is no such thing as "rights" Well then I have a question for you...since you believe that there are no rights...do you agree with Benjamin R. Tucker that if I were to stop a woman from throwing her baby that she gave birth to into a furnace...that I should be punished for interfering with her property?
I disagree with the idea that you should be punished. I welcome the thought of you rescuing the baby.

Quote
The main argument I've across to people who do not believe in rights as to why they DISAGREE with that is: The baby shouldn't be thrown into the furnace since it owns itself...so the mother is initiating violence against it..which is wrong. Here is how I have replied to that argument: If there are no rights than how can you say that the baby or anyone owns themselves? Since after all "no rights" includes no property rights...and no property rights means you can't "own" anything...and if you CAN still prove that the baby owns itself...than why is it wrong for the mother to initiate violence against it...after all....there are no rights.
If someone doesn't believe in rights, then their answer to why the baby shouldn't get thrown into the fire should be "I simply don't want to see babies thrown into fires. It's an arbitrary preference." Your argument is pretty good, but the reason things get confusing is because of semantics. Philosophically speaking, I don't think rights exist. I don't think there is any natural, indisputable moral code that says it is good for people to get some certain list of rights/privileges. Economically and socially, I think humans have much to gain for themselves through voluntaryism, including what we call "property rights." But don't confuse the word "rights" associated with property, to the "natural rights" that other philosophers talk about. Property rights, in common usage and everyday language, refers only to a custom of respecting property claims...it has nothing to do with "rights" in the philosophical sense.

So to address the end of your post, I cannot prove that the baby owns itself, and I cannot prove that it is wrong for the mother to throw the baby into the fire. I oppose that behavior because it is destructive and harmful, therefore violating my stated principles. But my goals of reducing human suffering and improving the standard of living for mankind is a preference, and a preference only. People are free to value other things, and my goals aren't necessarily good, even if I would like to think so.

PS: These were excellent questions, and I hope I cleared things up a little bit. Feel free to ask more, who knows, maybe you'll discover a flaw in my thinking.
Quote
This isn't mean to be sarcastic and while depending on your answer I may strongly disagree with you and may in fact think your partially amoral...I won't "bash" that opinion.
  Oh yeah, you don't need to apologize in advance for asking probing questions. It's entirely appropriate on a discussion board. Believe me, I cannot be offended.


Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: AgoristTeen1994 on March 06, 2012, 05:00:08 PM
Okay than. So to clarify while you are saying that you DO find it a bad thing to "throw the baby into the fire/furnace" that you believe that that is an arbitrary preference...and that while you're arbitrary preferences support NOT throwing the baby in the fire the preferences of the mother may differ...so basically you're saying it's morally neutral to throw the baby into the fire? What about cases of say slavery? Since as you said the baby doesn't own itself, or at least you can''t prove the baby owns itself...thus it would not be immoral for the mother to claim the baby as property correct? Which may very well go against the wishes of the baby, at least once it's older....at which point for a good deal of it's life, it may find, that it has the choice between "emancipating" itself as I believe Murray Rothbard put it, in which case it probably would be unable to provide for itself and thus would starve....or staying and quite possibly being murdered by the mother/father. So the child would be between a rock and a hard place. 

I apologize if I am misunderstanding what you are saying and I'm glad you both replied promptly and didn't get offended when many people would.


Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: JustSayNoToStatism on March 06, 2012, 08:59:28 PM
Okay than. So to clarify while you are saying that you DO find it a bad thing to "throw the baby into the fire/furnace" that you believe that that is an arbitrary preference...and that while you're arbitrary preferences support NOT throwing the baby in the fire the preferences of the mother may differ...
Correct.

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so basically you're saying it's morally neutral to throw the baby into the fire?
It depends what you mean by morals. In MY morality, it's immoral. In hers it might not be. Morality is a cultural/social phenomenon. It's not well defined, and it's constantly changing. It varies from person to person. I don't believe in an objective morality. So I didn't block quote the section about slavery, because it's explained the same way.

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I apologize if I am misunderstanding what you are saying and I'm glad you both replied promptly and didn't get offended when many people would.
Again, no apologies needed. I try to respond promptly when I can, but I tend to disappear for a few weeks at a time here or there. I feel one of those times fast approaching...


Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: Tom J on March 07, 2012, 06:13:27 AM
...

But don't confuse the word "rights" associated with property, to the "natural rights" that other philosophers talk about. Property rights, in common usage and everyday language, refers only to a custom of respecting property claims...it has nothing to do with "rights" in the philosophical sense.
...

Although there may be some who define property rights philosophically, it's not a choice between either defining property rights philosophically or defining them legally.

Would it be accurate to say that you regard the very concept of possession to be subjective?


Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: Mark Stoval on March 07, 2012, 11:07:51 AM
... But many libertarians, myself included in the past, would claim that the government is taking away our rights. But they are not taking away our rights. ...

Exactly. It is very important that we assert that we have our right to "life, liberty, and property" as they used to say in the Americas just before the Revolution. We assert the Non-Aggression Principle as a unalienable right as a Human. When the overwhelming majority come to see we are right, then we will be far along the road to convincing the society that Statism is the opposite of that and always will be.

As my pagan ancestors used to say: "as you harm no one else, do as you wilt". (they were close at least)

I have no "right" to free beer, good looks, willing women, fast cars, or anything else I might desire. But I should be free from worry that if I ever get some beer that you will come along and demand half of it "for the less fortunate"!


Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: Tom J on March 07, 2012, 02:26:45 PM
...

I see on that page near the middle that  --- “Right” in its older, objective sense means “what is just” or “what is fair.” --- and that holds true for the modern intuitive concept of the word.


I think the term rights can be used in an objective sense, when associated with an objective definition of aggression; I wasn't one of the "me tooers".  However, the definition you provided doesn’t do that; it raises the question, what is “just” and what is “fair”.  

Also, I don’t agree that everyone “knows” that aggression is wrong and that “We all knew that slavery was wrong”. History, the world, and our lives would be very different if that were the case. For example, in my observation, a great many people in the US and the world aren’t bothered in the least by the mass murder, maiming of people, and destruction of property and lively hoods, done on a grand scale by states and empires; it makes them feel safer and good about their country.  


Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: Mark Stoval on March 08, 2012, 06:22:31 AM


I think the term rights can be used in an objective sense, when associated with an objective definition of aggression; I wasn't one of the "me tooers".  However, the definition you provided doesn’t do that; it raises the question, what is “just” and what is “fair”.  

Yes, the terms "just" and "fair" were used without formal definition. Thanks for noticing that! Many have written books trying to define these words we toss about in political debates or conversations. My short answer is that "just" and "fair" are meaningless terms unless they start with the non-aggression principle. That is the one rock to which we libertarians should always begin. No?


Also, I don’t agree that everyone “knows” that aggression is wrong and that “We all knew that slavery was wrong”. History, the world, and our lives would be very different if that were the case. For example, in my observation, a great many people in the US and the world aren’t bothered in the least by the mass murder, maiming of people, and destruction of property and lively hoods, done on a grand scale by states and empires; it makes them feel safer and good about their country.  

It is true that the agitprop of the government and its war-mongering allies has fooled many people with fear and loathing. But I have never found anyone in personal life who did not agree that aggression against some innocent person was wrong. That is a big part of the reason we have to "demonize the other" to make him less than human so we can aggress against him with a clean consensus.

We must find a way to change the philosophical debate and engage the masses on "what is right" and "what is just" rather than let the politicians continue to just engage the masses on "here is what we will give you". Rothbard did a great job of that and built a large following. Even those libertarians who don't care for Rothbard (they believe the propaganda against him) owe him a huge debt for rescuing the ideas of liberty and freedom that our Classic Liberal forbears held dear. 


Title: Re: Religion, Anarchism, and Collectivism ...
Post by: JustSayNoToStatism on March 16, 2012, 05:53:28 PM
...

But don't confuse the word "rights" associated with property, to the "natural rights" that other philosophers talk about. Property rights, in common usage and everyday language, refers only to a custom of respecting property claims...it has nothing to do with "rights" in the philosophical sense.
...

Although there may be some who define property rights philosophically, it's not a choice between either defining property rights philosophically or defining them legally.

Would it be accurate to say that you regard the very concept of possession to be subjective?

I'm not understanding the question well enough to give a very confident answer. But if by subjective you mean not objective, I'm leaning towards yes.