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The silly non-aggression principal

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by AlpsStranger, May 29, 2017.

  1. AlpsStranger

    AlpsStranger Jump jump on the tiger!

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    I asked myself one pointed question and I think it killed my little bit of remaining libertarian streak.

    Why, if your system has no OTHER moral components ( no concern for the marginalized, no concern for the general well-being of others, etc. ) should you arbitrarily exclude "force?"

    The more I think about it, the anarcho capitalist/libertarian Non-Aggression Principal is really silly. If I'm going to watch someone die of cancer while I put a down-payment on my third yacht, then why not just take it a step further and let the truly strong rule? Why should the Koch brothers or the Walton family rule and not an Al Capone or Vladimir Putin type?

    And that, to me, becomes the real problem with all of these anti-statist economic ideas. If it's perfectly morally okay to brutally neglect people to get ahead, then why draw some silly arbitrary line saying you can't rob, murder and threaten to get what you want?

    Sorry but, if I'm honest with myself, it just sounds like an arbitrary moral position that happens to be very good for the already rich, and that's really about it. Basically, I'm rich ( or at least comfortable, ) so I favor the law of the jungle to the precise extent that I am most free to abuse others and put least at risk. Too little jungle and I get less power over others, too much jungle and suddenly the whole evolution metaphor is a little too real and I've got to face real physical danger to be big and powerful.
     
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  2. Perfection

    Perfection The Great Head.

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    Libertarians advocate the use of aggressive threats to enforce property rights. To them it's play by our rules or violence is allowed. They presume it's all okay because everything is voluntary but they neglect things like, people not having the choice to be born into poverty. In short, they're deluding themselves into a false sense of moral superiority (standard libertarian practice) while continuing to advocate for policies enforced by violence.
     
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  3. GoodSarmatian

    GoodSarmatian Jokerfied Western Male

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    So, this is not about actual non-aggression, it's about people who value the enforcement of PROPERTY RIGHTS above all else and think TAXES ARE THEFT becaue GOVERNMENT runs on the implicit threat of force.
    I don't see any non-aggression "principle" there, just self-serving hypocrisy.
     
    Last edited: May 29, 2017
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  4. Perfection

    Perfection The Great Head.

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    That about says it. Libertarians will of course prattle on saying it's not "aggresive" because it's defending what's there's. Yeah well your tax money belongs to the government, so it's just defending what's theirs. But since the government doesn't operate by insipid libertarian rules it's not "legitimate". They typically say this while hanging out on land confiscated from the Native Americans.
     
  5. Cutlass

    Cutlass The Man Who Wasn't There.

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    The real silliness of the non-aggression principle is in being so utterly and completely frakking stupid as to think that anyone would ever live by those principles.
     
  6. El_Machinae

    El_Machinae Colour vision since 2018 Retired Moderator

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    It's just an instance where someone takes a moral principle, and then expands it to the point where it's not functional. Morality is too fuzzy for simple sentences. Governments are too.

    Now, I have strong sympathies for many libertarian principles. There's a lot of good stuff in there. But the concept just cannot be expanded. The original property wasn't apportioned fairly. Access to the justice system isn't proportionate. Some things are massively more efficient when done together. Externalities cannot properly be tracked and assigned, etc. etc.

    I lost a lot of respect for the suasion abilities of the libertarian philosophy during the Ebola crisis. There was an obvious libertarian solution. And nearly everyone I know who claims to be 'libertarian' didn't pursue it.
     
  7. Tahuti

    Tahuti Writing Deity

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    Not all anti-statist economic ideas are rooted in (individual) property rights.

    The problem libertarians have is that they neglect (social) history. They simply cannot see that modern property rights were codified - among other things - by the land enclosure. Even by NAP standards, that was violent. Property rights are of course much older than that, though neat individual land ownership libertarians idealise did not exist for quite a long time.

    Now, specifically the problem of NAP is that defines aggression really narrowly: It only includes aggression by commission, not by omission. As the OP mentioned in the example.

    However, as a political philosophy, libertarianism cannot be put to practice anyway, because of it is based on a poor knowledge of political philosophy and social history. And really, forgot about Murray Rothbard and the like: Thomas Hobbes codified individual property rights as libertarians idealise it today. However, their sovereign would be a Private Security Firm. And libertarians assume a really impartial enforcement of property rights, which will likely not the case either: Fraud may be a violation of the NAP, though a creative con-artist in a libertarian society would simply use his NAP-violating wealth to buy legal immunity.
     
  8. warpus

    warpus In pork I trust

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    The problem with libertarian ideas is that they don't work.
     
  9. Akka

    Akka Moody old mage.

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    Good, you finally realized that the libertarian garbage is just a way to claims "might makes right" (so they can abuse and exploit others for their benefit) while weaseling out of the "okay, in this case I'll bash your head and take your things".
    It's the coward's Law of the Jungle, so that the coward can hide behind an ideology and still get his things.
    Pretty much spot-on ^^
     
  10. Timsup2nothin

    Timsup2nothin Deity

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    Pretty much spot on. Would have been completely spot on if you had applied it to the entire OP.
    This part was completely spot on.
     
  11. El_Machinae

    El_Machinae Colour vision since 2018 Retired Moderator

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    Well, the ideology mixes two things. "A society that enforces property rights is great", which may be true. And "the current distribution is a great starting point" just doesn't work
     
  12. AlpsStranger

    AlpsStranger Jump jump on the tiger!

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    I guess it's just getting to me.

    I've been doing a lot of very blue-collar grunt work lately ( long story. ) A lot of my coworkers are barely literate. More than a few have single-digit numbers of teeth and no prospects. I have bad dental health myself ( as I've discussed before, ) but I have enough of a support network that I've scraped by without looking like a jack-o-lantern thanks some modern dental wizardry.

    Yet my co-workers who are most staunchly pro-capitalist are the ones most brutally exploited by it. Men who cling only to the bitterness that they're a half-rung above rock bottom and they'll be damned if anyone gets out of the gutter without suffering. And double-damned if a darkie or, possibly worse, Mexican will do better than them. They'd eat the turds out of a white straight Christian CEO's executive bathroom to keep a Mexican from getting a promotion.

    The current social order is sick. Its death will be frightening and awful in and of itself, but we can't let the fear of that change hold us back forever. It's time to change. Not Barack Obama caffeine-free diet change either.
     
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  13. Tahuti

    Tahuti Writing Deity

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    Not all libertarians are alike. Milton Friedman may think it's not bad (as in he wouldn't care), though I honestly doubt Murray Rothbard would do so.

    Then again, I'm an ex-libertarian. All these names and concepts are hard to shrug away from your mind once these entered at one point, even if you disagree with them. What I note about libertarianism is that it has an overly abstract economic theory, completely divorced from context, unlike Marxism. Sure, some libertarians may retroactively recontextualise their theories Neo-Confederatism, U.S. Constitutionalism, European Monarchism, etc. in an attempt to gain the level of erudition of Marxism, though it feels fake as in pseudo-philosophical, and often (inadvertently) makes a lot of enemies in the process. Robert Nozick and Milton Friedman accept libertarianism's lack of context and almost seem to flirt with Analytic philosophy.

    A truly individualist ideology is rare: Libertarians accept individuality only in so far it does not hamper with property rights. Embedded Liberals make the same error of idiosyncracy though insert some patches hither and there like gun control and the welfare state to make it tolerable for some, not address the issue. You can't institute gun control if you trust the virtue of the individual, though it's a non-issue overall. You can't enforce property rights strictly for the same reason.
     
  14. Traitorfish

    Traitorfish The Tighnahulish Kid

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    Capitalism is a man punching you in the face. The non-aggression principal is him saying "but you're not allowed to hit back".

    Which is a shame, because there is genuinely something there. The proposition that people should use violence only as a final resort, and only defensively, is an undeniably attractive proposition. It's a shame that it's loudest proponents are hypocrites and imbeciles, and that the rest of us have so little moral imagination that we take their hypocrisy and imbecility as invalidating the principles they falsely claim.

    I mean, hundreds of millions of Christians have spent two thousand years believing quite sincerely that at least one person lived by those principles, and that the rest of us could aspire to it, and it seems unfair to denounce them all without qualification as "utterly and completely stupid", no matter how seriously you take your personal vendetta against Rand Paul.
     
  15. Berzerker

    Berzerker Deity

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    Aren't the marginalized generally the targets of force? Do others welcome violence? I question your definition of arbitrary. You can believe in the non-aggression principle and be concerned for others, you just cant forcibly involve others. If I see a motorist stranded with a flat tire, I'll usually help them if a soldier hasn't beat me to it... but I cant force others to pull over to change the tire.

    Why is that taking a step further? Seems you're already supporting 'might makes right', the non-aggression principle rejects rule by the strong. And if the Koch bros were running the country there'd be a bunch of people freed from the fate of spending years in cages for drugs. You and they just disagree on how to achieve a more civil society.

    Why would it be perfectly morally okay to brutally neglect people to get ahead? That sounds immoral... How does that immorality justify murdering and robbing people?

    The non-aggression principle - and I'm no expert on it - rejects the jungle, it rejects 'might makes right', it rejects using (initiating) force. But it isn't an arbitrary moral position, nobody wants to be the victim of violence. Seems to me morality is or should be based on universalities like what everyone can agree on. Why is murder immoral? Because not even murderers want to be murdered.

    If I steal your property, the time, effort, labor, sweat, etc, you spent saving enough money to buy the property effectively made you my slave. I'm sure the non-aggression principle allows for violence to remain free from slavery.
     
  16. Kyriakos

    Kyriakos Alien spiral maker

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    I expected this to be about a non- aggressive person, who is principal somewhere. :/
     
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  17. Cutlass

    Cutlass The Man Who Wasn't There.

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    Those poor innocent moneylenders in the temple would beg to disagree.
     
  18. Perfection

    Perfection The Great Head.

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    Are you seriously attempting to compare taxation with slavery?
     
  19. AlpsStranger

    AlpsStranger Jump jump on the tiger!

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    Ask these sacks of human garbage.



    I'm sure it's blah blah private property blah blah personal responsibility blah blah Ayn Rand blah blah taxation is slavery.

    No society where there is vast inequality and money can literally buy health, political influence and legal defense can be civil by definition.

    Either money must be barred from buying certain things, or inequality must be reduced ( Not eliminated. I'm not that radical. ) Preferably a balance of reduced inequality and fewer things being "market driven" Ex: No more pay-to-play legal system and basic high-quality healthcare for all. Note that I didn't say free; nothing is free. Paid communally.
     
    Last edited: May 29, 2017
  20. civver_764

    civver_764 Deity

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    So what? Pretty much every political ideology involves instances where violence is tolerated.
     

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