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Old 04-22-2011, 01:21 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by vashthestampede View Post
interesting videos.

I've always looked at the majority of society as "cattle".



How old are you? Just curious.
21.
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Old 04-24-2011, 12:46 PM   #22
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Nobody is advocating "shutting everything down". That's dumb.
Really?

I'm pretty sure that is exactly what the author of that video is espousing:
"To further create the illusion of freedom, in certain farms, the livestock are allowed to choose between a few farmers that the investors present. (images of presidential candidates) At best, they are given minor choices in how they are managed. They are never given the choice to shut down the farm, and be truly free."

Beyond that, the whole video can basically be summarized as "Having an economy and an organized society of any kind can only be the product of a humanity-as-livestock model, and therefore all economies and all societies are inherently evil."

So, essentially, the only way to be "free" is for us to all "shut everything down" and devolve to a state of complete lawlessness (laws create slavery) and bare subsistence farming (excess production also creates slavery.)



Jason, I honestly have to step back for a moment and ask: Do you genuinely believe in any of this stuff that you post up here?



I'm being totally serious. This video, in particular, is just so completely "out there" in terms of the ideas which are put forth being incompatible with reality that it genuinely makes me question whether you are trolling the forum.
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Old 04-25-2011, 03:32 AM   #23
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His idea of "shutting the farms down", is not the same as "shutting society down".
Society is not the same thing as gov't.

I look at this video as having philosophical and metaphorical ideas. I agree with most of them. Gov't today evolved from the feudalistic system. Gov't is used by the ruling elite as a means of extracting wealth from the productive class.
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Old 04-25-2011, 01:29 PM   #24
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His idea of "shutting the farms down", is not the same as "shutting society down".
Not directly, but the end result is the same.

His idea of "farms" and "farmers" encompasses most of the things that are necessary for a society to function.

Point 1: Without some kind of government, you cannot have laws and the means to enforce them. We don't even have to look back beyond the late 20th century to understand that in the absence of a stable government with a loyal police force, any sufficiently large group of people living under anarchic conditions will tend to naturally devolve into rule-by-bully. Doesn't matter whether it's a nation in central Africa or just a poorly-supervised schoolyard. In a consequence-free environment, the strong will always subjugate the weak.

Point 2: Without some kind of government, you can't have a standardized currency. Now, I'm well aware of your opinions vis--vis fiat money and the modern central bank, but even in a gold-based economy, you still need some kind of paper notes, and preferably a deposit-and-credit system to go along with them. If nothing else, do you not think that the rate of street crime (and orthopedic injury) would skyrocket if everybody were walking around with a large quantity of gold on their person, and that the rate of home burglary would increase by many orders of magnitude if there were no banks and I was forced to stuff my entire savings into a coffee can under my bed?

Point 3: Actually, a gold-based economy wouldn't be acceptable to Stefan even under the most ideal of circumstances. The video quite clearly states that having the technology to enable any excess production capacity will naturally lead to the rise of "slavery" (be it the literal Africans-and-chains variety, or merely an employer / employee relationship). Well, without excess production, there's no point in having an economy to begin with (even a barter economy), since nobody has anything to trade in the first place.


I understand some of the fundamental tenets of what the author here is trying to say, but he has a very narrow vision. What he is proposing just cannot work for any society which operates above the level of stone knives and bear-skins, and frankly, I enjoy having access to clean drinking water, medical care, protection from foreign armies, and a system of roads.



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Society is not the same thing as gov't.
In an ideal world, this is true. In actual practice, they are separate but inseparable.


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Gov't is used by the ruling elite as a means of extracting wealth from the productive class.
Well, yeah. You can't extract a lot of wealth from the unproductive class, as they don't have any.

Somebody has to pay for all of the road-building, healthcare-providing, military-and-police-organizing, etc.
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Old 04-25-2011, 01:54 PM   #25
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The gov't could get a job. We could drill for oil and sell it like the rest of the world.

Acutally, the US could rent our army like mercenaries. We already do it for free.
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Old 04-27-2011, 09:43 PM   #26
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Joe,

You are arguing for Minarchy, and I would love for us to live in one. In a Minarchy the purpose of gov't is to protect individual and property rights. And thus there would need to be a police force, a court system, and a military to protect against foreign invaders. What is NOT the purpose of gov't, is to re-distribute wealth, and to write economic interventionist laws. The latter always economic inefficiency; the former creates a welfare class (including corporate welfare). Empire building is also inimical to liberty and prosperity. The latter illegitimate functions of gov't are why your real tax rate is 30-50%.

As for currency, I like the idea of competing central banks. Where none of them have a gov't-granted monopoly, with the privilege of the legal ability to buy gov't debt and with a currency monopoly. The gov't can choose to collect taxes in gold or silver or even in a gov't currency. Having competing central banks will get rid of theft via inflation and get rid of the boom and bust cycle created by debt-expansion bubbles.

Lastly the guy in the video does not espouse Anarcho-Primitivism. He espouses a school of thought called Agorism. They have a lot of good ideas, and correctly point out the many ills of government, but I'm not 100% sold on the possibility of such a system.

In theory transitioning to Agorism is not possible in a society with little freedom such as in the likes of Somalia. It is only possible in a more advanced economy such as the USA. You missed the part (in maybe a later vid), that the center of a moral framework of an Agorist society is the non-aggression principle. IOW all agreements are voluntary. The fundamental precept of gov't, in contrast, is that gov't has a legal monopoly on violence. In an Agorist society, there can be no slavery because individuals cannot be coerced to do anything with the threat of violence.

For more ideas, this book is a bunch of essays on the problems of government, and AnarchoCapitalism.
http://voluntarykaraism.com/wp-conte...m%20(1973).pdf
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Old 04-28-2011, 09:37 AM   #27
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When jason writes big posts like the above, i pretend its the cat in his sig that's speaking them out to me while I read.
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Old 04-28-2011, 11:10 AM   #28
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Originally Posted by Braineack View Post
When jason writes big posts like the above, i pretend its the cat in his sig that's speaking them out to me while I read.
I thought I was the only one.
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Old 04-28-2011, 11:30 AM   #29
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I do have a problem with his last post.

Gov't should also be there to make sure baseball players don't take drugs, and if they do they can punish them.
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Old 04-28-2011, 01:09 PM   #30
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I can only read things in the voice of the professor from Futurama.



Jason:

Really?

That's what your whole political will is founded upon, the hope that everyone will be nice to each other and we'll all just get along?


It's been tried, man. In "advanced" societies, too. Riding the wave of the whole "back to the land" movement, all sorts of communes sprung up in the 1960s, in the US and elsewhere. Those places were founded on precisely the sort of principles that you mention, and pretty much every single one of them failed.

And those were being run by hippies- folks who, generally speaking, had a few things to say about peace and love. How well do you think your voluntary coopoeration movement is going to fare in downtown Baltimore or East LA?


Face it, dude. People don't just want to get along. Even in the idyllic suburb of Carlsbad, CA, I'm glad we have police.

Last edited by Joe Perez; 04-28-2011 at 02:41 PM.
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Old 04-29-2011, 02:34 AM   #31
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Joe:

Nobody said "no police needed". That would be idiotic. That's a very common misconception of Agorism. What they espouse is "police and the judicial system are too important to leave to the gov't, there should be free market competition in policing."

It has actually happened, in the Icelandic Commonwealth. It lasted for longer than the USA has been around. You got to choose among competing "chieftains". The gov't had no executive branch. Only a judicial and executive.

Besides, while I love reading the ideas of the Agorists and AnarchoCapitalists, (I learn a lot from them), I am still skeptical if it can ever happen. Barring that, I'll stick with Minarchy. This is where the gov't merely protects individual and property rights, by running the police, the military, and the judicial system.
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Old 04-29-2011, 12:32 PM   #32
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Originally Posted by JasonC SBB View Post
Nobody said "no police needed".
You keep saying that, and yet the video which started the thread was pretty clear on the message that government of any kind is inherently corrupt. It's quite hard to know whether you actually have a firm stance on any issues at all, or merely enjoy posting diatribes by marginalized individuals with wildly contrarian points of view.
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Old 04-29-2011, 12:36 PM   #33
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Government is a nessecary evil, imho.

after the war, we started with nothing....then we ratified the articles of confederation and when we realized they little a slightly more centralized government in order to make it work, we went with the constitution. this was the first of it's kind...the only consitution that granted citizens power and limited gov'ts.

Sadly, as time has gone by, curruption and political favors has allowed us to move closer and closer back to the system we fought against in the first place. Our gov't has great powers and we have less liberty.

Charlie Wilson might have stopped the Russians, but look at the cost...
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Old 04-29-2011, 03:05 PM   #34
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You keep saying that, and yet the video which started the thread was pretty clear on the message that government of any kind is inherently corrupt.
What you're missing is that in Agorist theory, you will have a non-gov't aka non-monopolistic police. Police can exist without a monopoly gov't. It existed in the Icelandic Commonwealth for something like 400 years.

I will try to be clear. I find the arguments of Agorists and AnrachoCapitalists to be very interesting. Most of their arguments also apply to Minarchy. However, wrt the differences between them and Minarchists, I lean towards the latter.

Minarchy is similar to the original design of the Articles of Confederation (and to a lesser extent, the Constitution). To whit, off the top of my head:

- Small gov't with limited powers, which protects individual and property rights, and enforces private contracts
- that means a police and judicial system
- De-centralization of power aka the principle that all laws should be enacted at the most local, effective level (e.g. city zoning laws, vs. federal drug laws).
- no "moralistic" laws e.g. laws against **** or drugs- no empire building - i.e. national DEfense, not OFfense
- no wealth re-distribution, no corporate nor social welfare
- no economic interventionist laws are allowed, e.g. no central bank protection
- no meddling in currency either
- larger units of gov't take funding (taxes) from the smaller units of gov't, NOT from the people

The conundrum that Agorist/AnarchoCapitalist theory diverges from Minarchy, as Braineack puts it, due to gov't being a "necessary evil".
In a Minarchy, the gov't is granted the legal monopoly of the use of coercion and violence. They are the only entity that can legally use force to impose its will. It is hard to prevent a limited gov't, which has this power, from growing and arrogating power to itself. One measure of this is the number of laws. It grows relentlessly, and very very few laws are retired.

The Federal Gov't has grown into the monster that it is today (taxes 30% of GDP, sends young people to their death, murders foreigners, all in the name of "spreading democracy" what have you), OTOH, it took 300 years to do so, which in a small way is a testament to the Constitution.
The Agorists believe that a society with an advanced economy can transition to a system of no monopoly-gov't, and services such as police and justice, can be provided by competing companies. In a competitive environment, individuals and firms that provide any product or service, need to compete with each other - IOW the customer is king (witness the computer hardware costs and quality over time).

Such a system does not require that all individuals be angels - after all, about 0.8% of individuals are psychopaths - however, it addresses the problem wherein, with a concentration of power (monopoly gov't), those 0.8% are the exact types who rise to said positions of power. The power to ote with your wallet is far more democratic than voting at the ballot box. Psychopaths are expert manipulators and at projecting personae, so you don't know if the guy you're voting for is one.

Anyway, that's the Agorist theory, which I find very intriguing.

Back to the original video, there were a couple of interesting concepts - that gov't costing 30% of GDP means from January to March you are a slave to the gov't - and think about the inefficiency of gov't wrt spending that tax money. We are slaves to the corporate welfare and social welfare recipients. The fact that international borders are set up wherein you have to jump through hoops to move across them, diminishes the competition between gov'ts to "attract citizens" if you will, unlike say, TX vs CA. The fact that the Fed Gov laws are now more numerous than state laws, means that TX resembles CA more than otherwise, again diminishing the competition between them in attracting citizens. That a society based on the non-aggression principle (nobody can initiate violence - but of course you can use violence as defense) would be more prosperous. And so on.

Last edited by JasonC SBB; 04-29-2011 at 03:20 PM.
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Old 05-01-2011, 06:56 PM   #35
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Face it, dude. People don't just want to get along. Even in the idyllic suburb of Carlsbad, CA, I'm glad we have police.
K. So I've been trolling this forum for a bit because I have nothing to bring to the table as everyone has been ***** deep in the furthest depths of their engine bay and back whereas the lowly grapist has 1) no money and 2) dropped his trans once and yelled at his timing belt a lot.

However there are two points I'd like to bring up for argument's sake:

1) Pretend this board is a society. Could it run without moderators or supporters? Discuss.

2) Everyone complains that we, as a society, are enslaved by debt.

Think about the last 60-80 years when luxury items such as cars and television sets were just that. Luxury items for people that were extremely wealthy. Now average joes like me and you can have a summer ride, a daily driver, a decent place to live, a degree in something useless, a retirement plan, accessibility to skanks much better looking than yourself (which may be directly correlated with how much **** and/or education you have, or it could be attributed to a complete breakdown of social hierarchy, or good ol' daddy issues), and a job that doesn't pay you in a sandwich bag full of change. Could the growth of money caused by switching from a semi-commodity currency to a fiat currency have caused all this? Now I'm an economist by trade and by education, and the only real answer we can tell you is, "We don't know. Wait a few years maybe and we'll come up with an educated suspicion or a model that may or may not be accurate."

Now a lot of us may be in debt for the rest of our lives from: mortgages, home equity loans (if you're a failure), business loans, car payments, etc. but the quality of living has increased and you can have more ****. There's no doubt about that. Personally, I'd rather have some debt than work my *** off to have one camry, a craptastic house in a rural area, no real retirement plan or safety net, to proudly say I am debt free and that my money will never grow but it's backed by the goodness of some commodity that can hyperinflate or hyperdeflate overnight.

The problem with commodity money (money backed by a commodity) is that it can never grow, unless you pillage and rape and get more of that commodity or have direct control of the value of it. Since fiat money (money backed by trust) is monopoly money it can grow independently of the value of whatever commodity it would've been secured by. So our buying power can increase and buy things we couldn't have possibly before. If this is considered "being trapped" or "held down by the man" or whatever the hell you want to call it, that's fine by me. Moreover, the Gini coefficient (measurement of the differences in national income) equality of the US isn't even all that awful.

I may have gone off on a very very different tangent since I read this last night and am responding straight from memory. So take this with a grain of salt and be easy on me since it seems you guys do your homework and I do this for a 9-5 that I couldn't give a rat's *** about.

Last edited by thegrapist; 05-01-2011 at 08:37 PM. Reason: a.d.d.
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Old 05-02-2011, 03:09 AM   #36
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1) Society has rules; in many cases the rules can be enforced without violence. This board is actually a great example. And, boards have competition. If a bunch of folks didn't like the sucky rules over at m.net, they moved here. The problem with gov't is that it has a monopoly on violence. Such power is dangerous. The worst individuals are attracted to gov't, megalomaniacs who wish to wield such power. Gov't has monopolies period. If you don't like the laws and can't change them, your best recourse is to move to another country, and there are some artificial, gov't-set barriers to that.

2) I agree, some debt, used wisely, like a tool, is a good thing.

Quote:
The problem with commodity money (money backed by a commodity) is that it can never grow,
And what's wrong with most prices denominated in said commodity, to drop slowly, numerically, over time? Look at LCD TV's and monitors. Their prices keep dropping. Imagine if most prices dropped over time - it means that money you set aside for retirement today, is worth more in the future. Make it a lot easier. No need to "play stockbroker" with your savings. Even if salaries dropped, as long as it dropped slower than the prices of goods, then that would be great - we'd end up in lower and lower tax brackets, instead of higher and higher ones!

Or better yet, why not have competing market currencies? Competing central banks?
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Old 05-02-2011, 09:20 AM   #37
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Pretend this board is a society. Could it run without moderators or supporters? Discuss.

funny you should mention this. We are about to force our senior members to pay $10 a month to use this site and require them to post helpful information or recieve a fine, while all the noobs get access the site for free and are privy to a wealth of information.

This will make our site full of great content and increase the userbase significantly. There couldn't be any bad reprocussions from it.
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