palelizard: Didn't Emperor Norton have local restaurants and businesses accept his currency?
palelizard: vygramul: Actually, it falls into "fiat currency" quite neatly. The term wasn't invented because GOVERNMENT said it was valuable. The government says its gold-backed currency was what's legal tender, too. The term was invented because the government said it was valuable DESPITE NO BACKING. Bitcoin is hardly a new category, conceptually. It's a variant of an old category.And it's not the first non-government currency created, even in the States. Usually, the Secret Service cracks down on those guys (possibly unconstitutionally so), but in a few cases where the organization isn't deemed a threat, they stick around for a bit. Didn't Emperor Norton have local restaurants and businesses accept his currency?
Mrtraveler01: I don't get the bitcoin thing. What useful purpose is it supposed to serve?
HighOnCraic: Well, I don't really think that the end can be assessed as of itself as being the end because what does the end feel like? It's like saying when you try to extrapolate the end of the universe, you say, if the universe is indeed infinite, then how - what does that mean? How far is all the way, and then if it stops, what's stopping it, and what's behind what's stopping it? So, what's the end, you know, is my question to you.
Hydra: The problem you describe is one of scarcity and trade-offs. A Wal-Mart employee chooses to be employed because he demands other goods and services he cannot provide for himself. Wal-Mart can "force" him to do something only to the extent that their employment contract allows them, and the employee is always free to leave and find new employment should he so choose. That might not be a wise decision for the employee since he demands food and other goods, but he is free to choose who employs him.If food was as plentiful as air, no one would need to produce it, and that employee wouldn't have to work for it in the first place. Scarcity is a current condition of existence - there simply is not enough stuff available to satisfy every single person's wants and needs (this is what drives production in the first place). It is not something that Wal-Mart foists upon the employee as retribution for an act/failing to act in the manner in which it wants. The "force" that libertarians refer to is the only kind of force that humans can use against other humans; the fact that we all need to eat is part of our state of being human, and that's not something anyone can control
palelizard: tirob:Coerced slavery is always wrong, but if you could prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that a mentally fit adult wished to voluntarily submit to indentured servitude
skullkrusher: SpiderQueenDemon: DjangoStonereaver: The fact that it was created by Robert Heinlein for STRANGER IN A STRANGE LAND, and was never meantto be taken seriously as an actual political system?This.I mean, my political belief system was made up by some white guys in wigs, some muckrakers, some suffragettes and a few safety experts and engineers who said 'let's try paying people a wage that'll let them buy the product and, y'know, not kill them,' but at least it's been play-tested./progressive//used to be liberal, but we seem to need progressives more///2013 just seems too much like the Gilded Age on repeatI have never understood how SIASL was a novel about libertarianism as a political or economic system
skullkrusher: Garble: skullkrusher: I have never understood how SIASL was a novel about libertarianism as a political or economic systemI was about to ask this... I don't see how a church that offers orgies and telekinetic powers is somehow a model of libertarianism.It's not. I am pretty sure someone somewhere said that Stranger in a Strange Land is a libertarian book and that's just been repeated since by people who haven't read it.It certainly talks of breaking the taboos against sexual freedom and hedonism but there's really nothing there about any libertarian politics or philosophy as we understand it and are discussing it here. Hell, Martian Mike was an anarcho-socialist if anything
Mrtraveler01: ManRay: In general, people are assholes, especially to people they don't know. There have been libertarian societies, but they were small groups of people that interacted with each other regularly. The self regulation comes in to play when you know people personally. It's hard to screw over someone you know, easy to do to a faceless crowd. Past a certain point in population and some person or group will always arise to exert power over everyone else.This is basically why Libertarianism doesn't work in a modern society. The honor system has never been proven to work on a large scale.It only works if everyone plays by the rules and if 1 or more people decide to be an asshole, the whole system goes into disarray.
yet_another_wumpus: Mrtraveler01: ManRay: In general, people are assholes, especially to people they don't know. There have been libertarian societies, but they were small groups of people that interacted with each other regularly. The self regulation comes in to play when you know people personally. It's hard to screw over someone you know, easy to do to a faceless crowd. Past a certain point in population and some person or group will always arise to exert power over everyone else.This is basically why Libertarianism doesn't work in a modern society. The honor system has never been proven to work on a large scale.It only works if everyone plays by the rules and if 1 or more people decide to be an asshole, the whole system goes into disarray.The problem isn't just people. You've noticed how corporations act like psychopaths? Now give them unlimited power. Enjoy your new world.
DjangoStonereaver: I think perhaps I should have said THE MOON IS A HARSH MISTRESS instead, but the idea that private enterpriseand individualism gets things done where government collectivism is a hindrance to progress runs as a thread throughmuch of Heinlein's work.
bugontherug: Snarfangel: There are many questions you can ask of libertarians. "Why are there no libertarian countries?" is a rather uninteresting one, the kind you would see on page three of a Fark thread.But I'm sure this time, the author has put an exciting and novel spin on it.*reads article*Or not. Not is good, too.Okay. Then let's try this:Why is it in every country on the planet where people have been free to choose, they've all picked to some greater or lesser degree a government charged with economic regulation and provision of assorted social services, including redistribution of wealth to assist the poor?Surely it's not because laissez-faire has so little persuasive appeal that it has been unable to win a sustained majority anywhere in history.
Mrtraveler01: This is basically why Libertarianism doesn't work in a modern society. The honor system has never been proven to work on a large scale.It only works if everyone plays by the rules and if 1 or more people decide to be an asshole, the whole system goes into disarray.
ManRay: It's funny to me that libertarian's philosophy generally depends on people doing the right thing, yet they have the reputation of being greedy pricks.
udhq: wildcardjack: I use Somalia as an endpoint in an anti-Libertarian slippery slope argument.1: Weak policing leads to provision of security by strong men2: Strong men become local potentates3: Strong men become kings4: Feudalism.It's a stretch, but it's how Europe went from the Roman empire to Feudal europe after the empire fell apart.Would it happen that way here? Maybe. I'd bet on corporate overlords instead of feudal lords. Corporations with armies and nuclear weapons./Proctor & Gamble presents The Tide wars.You're assuming something similar isn't already in place.I know several people who are forced to stay employed by major corporations because if they switched jobs, they would be denied health insurance and would die as a result.
Philip Francis Queeg: ManRay: A question liberals have problems with:Is there anything that you think is a good idea that the government should not be involved in?I think a me having a night of hot, steamy sex with Salma Hayek is a very good idea, but I don't see any role for the governmentb in it.
palelizard: Most of the Jim Crow Laws passed after Reconstruction, once the invading Northerners had finished trying to demolish Confederate culture, and been gone long enough they weren't coming back quickly. In Lies My Teacher Told Me (if I'm remembering the correct book) the South was pretty integrated and relatively equal opportunity (officially) up through the late 1880s to early 20th century, depending on the locale.
A Dark Evil Omen: It shakes out when you realize that right-libertarianism is snake oil and you realize that most libertarians just want to be first in line to hit the "Betray" button as hard and as fast as they can.
gimmegimme: [3.bp.blogspot.com image 400x300]Libertarian fire department on the job.
Dancin_In_Anson: BunkoSquad: That's almost word-for-word why I'm for single-payer health care.Because anything other than total government control of the process is anarchy.
tirob: Prove their mental fitness, etc., to whom? The Libertarian Tribunal for the Parsing of Contracts Between Indentured Servants and Their Owners?
tallguywithglasseson: That sounds like the "Confederate myth of Reconstruction" that Loewen excoriates in that book.Maybe I'm not reading your post correctly.
Befuddled: Unfortunately, the majority of people can't understand why something is bad until they have a real-world example of it; that's why almost no one is currently advocating communism. We should give the libertarians a bit of the nation to make their utopian society and let them fail in spectacular fashion. Then maybe the idiocy that is libertarianism will finally die off.
Dancin_In_Anson: I can see by reading through this thread that public education has done it's job and done it...well.
schrodinger: skullkrusher: vygramul: Hydra: STATE-ENFORCED Jim Crow laws, etc.Really? You're blaming Jim Crow Laws for FORCING restaurants to have whites-only counters?Seriously?Wow.you realize that that's what many of them did? They specifically forbade non-segregated businesses and public places.I keep hearing this one, but I never see any citation.
Ned Stark: Baryogenesis: Hydra: The defining characteristic between "public" and "private" is the ability for a given entity to have legal, legitimate use of force. A private firm CANNOT force anyone to buy its products since it does not procure its own private military and holds guns to everyone's head (Wal-Mart doesn't have its own army).This is one of the big failures of libertarians. They don't understand that "force" extends beyond physical force. There are other ways of controlling people that don't involve literally putting a gun to someone's head or using the threat of such. Economic force is one of them. Walmart doesn't need a gun to force an employee who is less than a week's pay away from not being able to pay rent to do what they want. No one can make a rational choice when 1 of the options leaves them and their family homeless.And how exactly would anything wal-mart did render them homeless? Will they send an angry letter and just wait for the kids to shuffle out into the rain?Wait no, the police will go their with guns and remove the family and drag them off to a dungeon or kill them if they resist.
Baryogenesis: The point is Wal-Mart isn't literally forcing them out of their home, but they still have power over their workers. Do X, Y, Z or you're fired is a type on control especially when the choice is between rent, food and Wal-Mart's demands.
Darth_Lukecash: Two things that stand out: that skepticism of government, yet groups of people making decisions are some how better. And somehow libertarians are closer to their communities.
gameshowhost: [i47.tinypic.com image 500x282] libertarian surgeon general
palelizard: My point, somewhat rambling and sarcastically made, was Jim Crow laws were created after Reconstruction. During Reconstruction when the South was under basically military occupation, things were more equal by military enforcement. The previous poster had asked when Jim Crow laws were enacted. And as to why, it's because the South, despite being defeated, didn't want to lose graciously.
OhioUGrad: "Name another amendment from the Constitution other than freedom of speech and right to bear arms?"
bulldg4life: A libertarian does not understand this point.Every last time someone makes this point, you are guaranteed to get a response that implies the person should find another job, move to where a better job is available, start their own company or deal with it
Anonymous Bosch: "Why do you ignore the parts of history where unregulated commerce got us used meat stores and piles of chalk and lye masquerading as butter?""Why should we trust people to not break the rules in an unregulated market when we can't trust them to do so now? Is your position really that if there were no authorities to bribe, everyone would behave?""Why is it that practically every historical example of libertarian concepts at work- such as privatized fire departments -has had to be replaced with organized, well-regulated efforts for the safety of everyone involved?""Would you willingly live in an area without a police force?""Do you think it's significant that the most famous works championing versions of libertarianism are works of fiction and not philosophical/economic treatises?""You do know Ron Paul is full of shiat, right?"Sorry, had too much straw for just one strawman.
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