Page 8 of 9 FirstFirst ... 6789 LastLast
Results 71 to 80 of 88
  1. #71  
    Our widdle friend. Wei Wu Wei's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    6,414
    Quote Originally Posted by NJCardFan View Post
    Say no more.
    Quote Originally Posted by Adam Smith - Wealth of Nations
    It is not very unreasonable that the rich should contribute to the public expense, not only in proportion to their revenue, but something more than in that proportion.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  2. #72  
    Senior Member Zathras's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    San Jose, California
    Posts
    6,235
    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    Fixed for accuracy.
    Solve a man's problem with violence and help him for a day. Teach a man how to solve his problems with violence, help him for a lifetime - Belkar Bitterleaf
    Reply With Quote  
     

  3. #73  
    LTC Member Odysseus's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    FT Belvoir, VA
    Posts
    15,638
    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    I voted for Obama.

    I've admitted multiple times on this site that I naively got swept up in the hype and empty rhetoric, the symbolic gesture of voting for a black man, and that I still had one last shred of support for the Democratic party that had let me down many times before.

    I admitted that since then I've abandoned that group of clowns and in person I am more staunchly and vocally critical of the Democratic party than I am of the Republicans.
    Everywhere but here, that is. Here you only criticize Republicans, and occasionally try to convince us that Obama is one.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    I'm not sure who I plan to vote for. I'm not going to be naive though. I know my vote doesn't matter to the outcome of this election, and I know the outcome of this election doesn't really matter in the larger scheme of things. Both major parties are corporatist, big-government, socialism-for-the-wealthy, war mongering, plutocratic parties who only serve the interests those with the financial/institutional power to help them.

    Getting caught up in the Dem vs GOP thing is worthless. It's just a game, just a spectacle. They hype it up just so people feel like they actually have some control over their government, but a false choice between two bad candidates isn't really exercising democratic control.

    Politics should be engaged at the local level, in your community with organization. Huffing and puffing about tabloid cable news and casting a pointless vote every few years is just a pacifier.
    Yeah, we've heard this before. If that's what you truly believe, then why are you posting here?

    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    Whoa now. You're going to have to show me a line of logical reasoning to support this assertion. I understand it's a philosophic argument, but it seems to fly in the face of our most basic practices.
    The basic practices of collectivization? Of slaughtering kulaks, the bourgeoisie, the various property owners in every state that your ilk has taken over? That doesn't fly in the face of your most basic practices, it is your most basic practice.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    Children do not have to right to purchase property, but they have powerful protection of their rights to not be killed, abused, forced into slave labor, etc.
    That is false. Children can own property. They are limited, based on their not being presumed to give consent to contractual agreements due to their ages, from exercising full control of their property until they reach their age of majority, but when a child does engage in commerce, they are permitted to do so provided that their interests are represented by a responsible adult.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    Even prisoners are given rights when they aren't allowed to purchase property.
    Prisoners cannot own or purchase property? Where is that in the law?

    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    Explain how a person having the right to own private property is a precondition or basis for their rights to life, their rights to worship freely, etc.
    Easy. The right to live is predicated on the ability to sustain your life through your own efforts. One who is not permitted to keep or dispose of the fruits of their efforts, i.e., their property, has no liberty. They cannot sustain their lives, and their other rights are similarly truncated. Every right in the Bill of Rights is predicated on the presumption of property rights. Take freedom of speech, for example. Is your speech truly free if the government can take everything that you own? Can you criticize it if your property will be forfeit as a consequence? The right to keep and bear arms is derived from the right to protect oneself, one's family and one's property. The Third Amendment, against Quartering, was a direct response to the English Crown's abrogation of property rights. The fourth Amendment explicitly cites the right to be secure in our papers, homes and persons. Need I continue?

    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    In a nation like Cuba, people have not had the right to own private property (means of production), but their government explicitly recognizes other rights, such as the right to free education or access to health care. This is not an argument concerning the quality of their education or healthcare so don't bother, it's about their government recognizing their rights to the education and healthcare that they do have, while denying the right to private property.

    How is that possible?
    The sham health care and education presented by the Cuban government is an example of the absence of property rights. People who are allowed to keep and own property are free to spend it on real health care. People whose livelihoods are beyond the reach of government can choose how they and their children will be educated, and pay for it besides. People whose homes are secure do not fear a knock on the door in the middle of the night. You complain about millionaires owning more than their employees, but when the government owns everything and the people have nothing, you say nothing. Cuba is a tyranny because the people own nothing and the government owns everything.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    Okay your argument is:

    A. The state can only forbid control of property if they reserve the right to use lethal force.
    B. A state that has the power to kill its own citizens recognizes no rights.
    No. That is not my argument. My argument is that a state that forbids the ownership of private property has no constraints upon it, that it will use lethal force at will, without consequences. It is also that a government that forbids the private ownership of property will use that force in order to enforce its will against those who resist the confiscation of their property, that those who do not conform will be subjected to the full force of the state, including lethal force. That is why socialism is inherently coercive, because it must impose a unifying conformity on all people, regardless of their differences.


    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    This line of logic applies to any state government with any laws. The United States enforces all of our laws by giving the police the authority to kill citizens if they resist the enforcement of those laws.

    Our government kills people not just as a means to enforce laws (like shooting someone resisting arrest), but even as a punishment for breaking laws.

    Your logic says that if a government reserves the right to kill its own citizens to enforce its authority, that said government recognizes no rights.

    The United States reserves the right to kill its own citizens to enforce its authority (and it exercises this right regularly). So if your logic is sound, you must admit that the US government recognizes no rights.
    Since your rebuttal is based on a complete misstatement of my argument, there is no need for me to admit anything of the sort. All governments have the authority to use force. It is the defining characteristic of government. Any transaction in which government is involved has, behind it, the threat of force. It is only the strict limitation on the power of government to encroach in areas beyond its legitimate scope that protects us from this.
    --Odysseus
    Sic Hacer Pace, Para Bellum.

    Before you can do things for people, you must be the kind of man who can get things done. But to get things done, you must love the doing, not the people!
    Reply With Quote  
     

  4. #74  
    Our widdle friend. Wei Wu Wei's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    6,414
    Quote Originally Posted by Odysseus View Post
    Everywhere but here, that is. Here you only criticize Republicans, and occasionally try to convince us that Obama is one.
    I criticize Obama often here and have openly admitted my lack of critical thought when supporting him in 2008. I don't think I've ever seen you, or anyone else admit to being wrong or changing positions on issues here.

    My opinions about liberalism have changed, I was wrong. My opinions about abortion have been loosened up through thought, reflection, and respectful discussions with conservatives. My opinions about multiculturalism, "tolerance", and identity politics have shifted. My support for Democrats and Obama has disintegrated.

    I'm able to agree with conservatives on many issues, even if our perspectives don't line up. I agree with libertarians on many issues, even if our perspectives don't line up.

    Have you been able to change your positions through critical thinking and talking to left-wingers? From what I read, it seems as if you are a right-wing hardliner and GOP loyalist. Is there anything you can agree with liberals or leftists on?


    That is false. Children can own property. They are limited, based on their not being presumed to give consent to contractual agreements due to their ages, from exercising full control of their property until they reach their age of majority, but when a child does engage in commerce, they are permitted to do so provided that their interests are represented by a responsible adult.
    You are right, children can own property through different means (such as inheritance.) What I should have said, is children cannot control property on their own, nor can they purchase property.



    Easy. The right to live is predicated on the ability to sustain your life through your own efforts. One who is not permitted to keep or dispose of the fruits of their efforts, i.e., their property, has no liberty.
    Okay let's take this one step at a time. There are many issues here to address, and they should be addressed separately. I hope you will not conflate all of this into one blurred question and answer it by attacking something else.

    1. The right to live is predicated on the ability to sustain your life through your own efforts? If that is true, then an unborn fetus has no right to life because it cannot sustain it's life on it's own. The same applies to people in persistent vegetative states such as Terri Schavio (my spelling may be wrong here, as it often is.)

    This extends on to people who are disabled.

    2. If you are defining private property as a "fruit of one's efforts" (and if this should not be taken as a definition, please correct me), then businesses or business assets which are inherited are excluded from this.

    3. This also brings into questions investments. If I put money into a savings account and it accumulates interest, in what way is interest accumulation a "product of labor?" (assuming labor and efforts are interchangeable).

    4. This one is important. You consider private property to be the fruit of one's labor, so let's consider this. Man A works on a farm. He works the land, plants the seeds, tends the fields, harvests the crops, loads the crops up and takes them to a market where he sells them. Let's say Man A does every single step of the labor needed to produce and sell the commodities in question, including placing orders on supplies and managing the money that comes in. However, the farm land is owned by Man B. Is the commodity produced a product of Man A's labor, or Man B's labor? Which man's labor produces the "fruit" in question?

    Some would say that Man B makes an investment on the land, takes out loans, and uses the money earned to pay back the loan. This is only possible though, because Man B claims ownership of the commodities which Man A produces with his labor.

    They cannot sustain their lives, and their other rights are similarly truncated. Every right in the Bill of Rights is predicated on the presumption of property rights. Take freedom of speech, for example. Is your speech truly free if the government can take everything that you own?
    It seems it would be as long as it's not taken as a punishment for speech. If the government seized all businesses in the nation, but the former business owners were allowed to say whatever they wanted and go on tv and write books, how is that an infringement of speech?

    Can you criticize it if your property will be forfeit as a consequence?
    that's a different question.

    the state is allowed to punish people with death in the US, but that is not an infringement on speech, as long as you aren't killed for what you say. Do you agree with that?

    The right to keep and bear arms is derived from the right to protect oneself, one's family and one's property.
    The right to keep and bear arms still functions as a right to protect oneself, one's family and one's personal property. The inability to own a factory doesn't infringe on the right to bear arms.

    The Third Amendment, against Quartering, was a direct response to the English Crown's abrogation of property rights. The fourth Amendment explicitly cites the right to be secure in our papers, homes and persons. Need I continue?
    For the sake of having this discussions, we should make a distinction between private and personal property. You don't have to agree with this distinction being applied legally, that's fine, but in order to have a discussion where we aren't talking about different things, we should clarify our concepts.

    I am discussion Private Property, which, to put it in very simple terms, means private ownership of the means of production (yes a classic marxist designation calm down). Personal property, which are the items and goods you use or consume yourself, is something different.

    The 3rd and 4th amendments cover personal property, and would continue to function even without private property.

    I'm not arguing that the government should confiscate all private property, I'm merely demonstrating that our rights are not necessarily tied to the right to own private property as you claim.



    The sham health care and education presented by the Cuban government is an example of the absence of property rights. People who are allowed to keep and own property are free to spend it on real health care. People whose livelihoods are beyond the reach of government can choose how they and their children will be educated, and pay for it besides. People whose homes are secure do not fear a knock on the door in the middle of the night. You complain about millionaires owning more than their employees, but when the government owns everything and the people have nothing, you say nothing. Cuba is a tyranny because the people own nothing and the government owns everything.
    You did not address my point whatsoever, you simply are saying cuba is bad and not free.

    Cubans enjoy rights like health care and education. Yes it's true that if you are in America and you have a well paying job with good health insurance you can afford better quality health care, that is not the point and doesn't address the point. Yes it's true that if you are in America and you have the money to afford a top notch private school you will get a great education, again that has nothing to do with the argument I was presenting.

    My argument is:

    A. The post-revolution government in Cuba has not recognized the right to own private property (although Personal Property is fine).
    B. The post-revolution government in Cuba recognizes the right for all people to have access to education and health care without paying anything out-of-pocket.
    Therefore: C: A government can recognize Rights, without necessarily recognizing the right to own property.

    A very simple argument.



    No. That is not my argument. My argument is that a state that forbids the ownership of private property has no constraints upon it, that it will use lethal force at will, without consequences.
    You will have to demonstrate this with a line of reasoning.

    (Before anyone gets hysterical, as I know some people will, I should clearly state that I am not advocating this, it is a thought-experiment used for the purpose of illustrating the soundness of a philosophic argument.)

    Suppose the exact same US constitution, except with an amendment that states that individuals cannot own private property (means of production), and that all means of production are collectively owned by the state.

    Why wouldn't the other rights, say those in the Bill of Rights, function? If the government takes over Exxon, would that prohibit the CEO or shareholders of exxon from writing books expressing their anger about it? Would that allow police to enter the personal homes of shareholders without reasonable cause and warrants? Would that require upper management to worship Allah or prohibit them from going to church?

    It is also that a government that forbids the private ownership of property will use that force in order to enforce its will against those who resist the confiscation of their property, that those who do not conform will be subjected to the full force of the state, including lethal force.
    A government that has ANY laws will use lethal force to enforce those laws against those who disobey the law. How is that specific to property laws?

    That is why socialism is inherently coercive, because it must impose a unifying conformity on all people, regardless of their differences.
    This is just rambling (that's okay I ramble a lot too).
    Quote Originally Posted by Adam Smith - Wealth of Nations
    It is not very unreasonable that the rich should contribute to the public expense, not only in proportion to their revenue, but something more than in that proportion.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  5. #75  
    Our widdle friend. Wei Wu Wei's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    6,414
    Since your rebuttal is based on a complete misstatement of my argument, there is no need for me to admit anything of the sort.
    I will keep trying to understand your argument using logical terms and a line of reasoning, and it helps if you keep your arguments more focused.

    All governments have the authority to use force. It is the defining characteristic of government. Any transaction in which government is involved has, behind it, the threat of force. It is only the strict limitation on the power of government to encroach in areas beyond its legitimate scope that protects us from this.
    Yes we consider the government to be limited to a legitimate scope, but that very scope of legitimacy has been debated since the nation was formed. A government isn't a natural physical thing with set properties or rules like the atomic weight of Helium. It's a purely symbolic, social structure that exists only as a set of concepts and relations. When you address a social symbolic entity like this as if it were a solid physical thing, you blind yourself to your own presuppositions.
    Quote Originally Posted by Adam Smith - Wealth of Nations
    It is not very unreasonable that the rich should contribute to the public expense, not only in proportion to their revenue, but something more than in that proportion.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  6. #76  
    LTC Member Odysseus's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    FT Belvoir, VA
    Posts
    15,638
    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    I criticize Obama often here and have openly admitted my lack of critical thought when supporting him in 2008. I don't think I've ever seen you, or anyone else admit to being wrong or changing positions on issues here.
    Sure we do. I used to be pro-choice. I was a registered Democrat until 1989. I grew up and grew to the right.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    My opinions about liberalism have changed, I was wrong. My opinions about abortion have been loosened up through thought, reflection, and respectful discussions with conservatives. My opinions about multiculturalism, "tolerance", and identity politics have shifted. My support for Democrats and Obama has disintegrated.

    I'm able to agree with conservatives on many issues, even if our perspectives don't line up. I agree with libertarians on many issues, even if our perspectives don't line up.

    Have you been able to change your positions through critical thinking and talking to left-wingers? From what I read, it seems as if you are a right-wing hardliner and GOP loyalist. Is there anything you can agree with liberals or leftists on?
    This isn't about me having to prove myself to you. It's about you making unsupported statements that you cannot back up.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    You are right, children can own property through different means (such as inheritance.) What I should have said, is children cannot control property on their own, nor can they purchase property.
    This is true, but they can own it, and that is what matters. The government cannot unilaterally take it away from them. They have a right to own property.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    Okay let's take this one step at a time. There are many issues here to address, and they should be addressed separately. I hope you will not conflate all of this into one blurred question and answer it by attacking something else.

    1. The right to live is predicated on the ability to sustain your life through your own efforts? If that is true, then an unborn fetus has no right to life because it cannot sustain it's life on it's own. The same applies to people in persistent vegetative states such as Terri Schavio (my spelling may be wrong here, as it often is.)

    This extends on to people who are disabled.
    Nice try. The right to live is the first, most basic of rights, without which all others are meaningless. The right to sustain your life through the creation and acquisition of property is a logical corollary of that right, but if someone cannot sustain his or herself, it does not eliminate the first right.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    2. If you are defining private property as a "fruit of one's efforts" (and if this should not be taken as a definition, please correct me), then businesses or business assets which are inherited are excluded from this.
    No, again. All property is the result of somebody's efforts, either intellectual, physical or both, but the right to inherit isn't a right of the heir, it is a right of the person who bequeaths it. The property that my children will someday inherit from me is my property. When I die, my last will is the statement of how I want my property disposed of. Hence the term "last will". It is literally the last expression of my will. Their inheritance is based on my right to keep and dispose of my property as I see fit. Once it is no longer mine, then it belongs to my heirs, and it is theirs to use as they see fit.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    3. This also brings into questions investments. If I put money into a savings account and it accumulates interest, in what way is interest accumulation a "product of labor?" (assuming labor and efforts are interchangeable).
    My savings account is a loan to the bank, at a fixed rate of interest. It allows my money to be used for other purposes (such as mortgages, business loans, etc.). The amount of return on a loan is based on the supply of money available and the demands of various borrowers, as well as their likelihood of paying off the loan. High risk loans carry higher interest rates. My investment is a calculated risk, and calculation is effort, too.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    4. This one is important. You consider private property to be the fruit of one's labor, so let's consider this. Man A works on a farm. He works the land, plants the seeds, tends the fields, harvests the crops, loads the crops up and takes them to a market where he sells them. Let's say Man A does every single step of the labor needed to produce and sell the commodities in question, including placing orders on supplies and managing the money that comes in. However, the farm land is owned by Man B. Is the commodity produced a product of Man A's labor, or Man B's labor? Which man's labor produces the "fruit" in question?
    Nice sleight of hand there. I never equated effort and labor. You're trying to take this back to Marxist labor theory.

    In answer to your question, it depends on the contract between A and B. If A is a hired hand, he gets a salary. If he is a tenant farmer, he gets a percentage of the produce or the sale. If he is a partner in the business, then he has a share of the company, based on their contractual obligations. It all depends on what they agree to, and that will depend on a variety of factors. Is land scarce or plentiful? Is labor scarce or plentiful? If land is scarce, and the labor supply is high, the deal for a laborer is going to be less lucrative than if land is plentiful and labor is scarce.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    Some would say that Man B makes an investment on the land, takes out loans, and uses the money earned to pay back the loan. This is only possible though, because Man B claims ownership of the commodities which Man A produces with his labor.
    Or not. The owner of the land has other options. He can let it lay fallow, parcel it out and sell it, develop it for other uses, or sit in one corner of it and paint landscapes all day. You are attempting to apply an arbitrary morality to voluntary transactions which are completely moral with or without your approval.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    It seems it would be as long as it's not taken as a punishment for speech. If the government seized all businesses in the nation, but the former business owners were allowed to say whatever they wanted and go on tv and write books, how is that an infringement of speech?
    How long would the former business owners be permitted to call the government thieves on government-owned stations? Can you cite an example of a state-owned media monopoly that is permitted to criticize the state?

    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    that's a different question.

    the state is allowed to punish people with death in the US, but that is not an infringement on speech, as long as you aren't killed for what you say. Do you agree with that?
    Of course.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    The right to keep and bear arms still functions as a right to protect oneself, one's family and one's personal property. The inability to own a factory doesn't infringe on the right to bear arms.
    A state that can take your factory, your home, your car or any other property can take your arms as well. And a state that wants to take your factory, your home, your car or any other property will start with your arms, because it will make all other resistance futile.
    --Odysseus
    Sic Hacer Pace, Para Bellum.

    Before you can do things for people, you must be the kind of man who can get things done. But to get things done, you must love the doing, not the people!
    Reply With Quote  
     

  7. #77  
    LTC Member Odysseus's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    FT Belvoir, VA
    Posts
    15,638
    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    For the sake of having this discussions, we should make a distinction between private and personal property. You don't have to agree with this distinction being applied legally, that's fine, but in order to have a discussion where we aren't talking about different things, we should clarify our concepts.

    I am discussion Private Property, which, to put it in very simple terms, means private ownership of the means of production (yes a classic marxist designation calm down). Personal property, which are the items and goods you use or consume yourself, is something different.

    The 3rd and 4th amendments cover personal property, and would continue to function even without private property.
    I know what you are saying, and it is a false distinction. All property is property. My car, my house and my business are my property, and there is no difference between them. For example, if I own a house, and move, but keep it as a rental property, it becomes a business. At that point, the Marxist definition changes it from my personal property to my private property, and permits its expropriation. It's still my house, and I may have intended to retire to it somewhere down the line, but that's no longer an option. Let's say that I own a family farm, and we have a harvest. I hire temporary labor to bring in the crops, which I have nurtured throughout the year. My personal land then becomes private land. If I work my land and have a surplus that I sell, my surplus marks me as a business, rather than a subsistence farmer. My property is therefore changed arbitrarily from personal to private to public. Marx's distinction is therefore nonsensical.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    I'm not arguing that the government should confiscate all private property, I'm merely demonstrating that our rights are not necessarily tied to the right to own private property as you claim.
    But, as a socialist, you do advocate it. And you are wrong. Property rights are the basis of all other rights, with one exception, which I have explained above.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    You did not address my point whatsoever, you simply are saying cuba is bad and not free.
    If, by not addressing your point, you mean that I demonstrated that it is not valid, then you are correct. Cuba is bad, and is not free, because it has no property rights. However, since you want to play that, let's have at it again.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    Cubans enjoy rights like health care and education. Yes it's true that if you are in America and you have a well paying job with good health insurance you can afford better quality health care, that is not the point and doesn't address the point. Yes it's true that if you are in America and you have the money to afford a top notch private school you will get a great education, again that has nothing to do with the argument I was presenting.
    First of all, health care and education are not rights. You cannot have a right that is contingent on someone else supplying it for free. I do not have the right to uncompensated labor from someone else, because I do not have the right to make that person my slave. It doesn't matter if that person is a doctor, a teacher, or the person whose taxes pay for the doctor or teacher. The state cannot simply decide that health care or education is a right. Again, back to property: A doctor's practice, his business, is his private property. I have no right to demand his services, but I have every right to purchase them, if he is willing to sell them. If I demand his services without his consent, then I have enslaved him, and he has no rights. If the government enslaves him on my behalf, he is still enslaved. Without property rights, the doctor is a slave to the state.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    My argument is:

    A. The post-revolution government in Cuba has not recognized the right to own private property (although Personal Property is fine).
    A false distinction, and neither is secure.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    B. The post-revolution government in Cuba recognizes the right for all people to have access to education and health care without paying anything out-of-pocket.
    i.e., the Cuban government has enslaved teachers and doctors, who no longer have the right to sell their services.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    Therefore: C: A government can recognize Rights, without necessarily recognizing the right to own property.
    Except that the government has not recognized a right, it has enslaved one group of people and forced them to provide services to another group, which it then claims is a right. However, since nobody has any rights, the health care and educational services are not rights, so much as the largess of a sovereign to his serfs. They are the bones thrown to dogs by feudal lords. If a feudal lord "recognized" a right to eat for free, and fed his serfs and dogs the same scraps, can you truly say that these are rights?

    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    A very simple argument.
    Wrong arguments often are.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    You will have to demonstrate this with a line of reasoning.

    (Before anyone gets hysterical, as I know some people will, I should clearly state that I am not advocating this, it is a thought-experiment used for the purpose of illustrating the soundness of a philosophic argument.)

    Suppose the exact same US constitution, except with an amendment that states that individuals cannot own private property (means of production), and that all means of production are collectively owned by the state.

    Why wouldn't the other rights, say those in the Bill of Rights, function? If the government takes over Exxon, would that prohibit the CEO or shareholders of exxon from writing books expressing their anger about it?
    Well, for one thing, the government would own all of the publishing houses. Does Hugo Chavez permit dissent? Does Castro?

    [QUOTE=Wei Wu Wei;500559]Would that allow police to enter the personal homes of shareholders without reasonable cause and warrants?

    Of course it would. If you live in state-owned housing, the state has the same rights as your landlord, which is control of the property, but unlike a private landlord, it also controls the courts and the enforcement of law, therefore it can evict you at will, and if it can do that, then anything short of eviction, such as opening your doors to the police, are hardly impositions. After all, the police can simply evict you from your home and then search it. No property rights, no home ownership rights.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    Would that require upper management to worship Allah or prohibit them from going to church?
    It might, if the state decided that only those who worship a certain way could work in state-run enterprises, which would be all of them. That's pretty much the idea behind the various communist states' persecution of religious groups.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    A government that has ANY laws will use lethal force to enforce those laws against those who disobey the law. How is that specific to property laws?
    That is not true. A government in which property is privately held will not use lethal force against petty thieves, for example. It is only when the state owns all property that petty crimes become crimes against the state.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    This is just rambling (that's okay I ramble a lot too).
    No, it's actually a major component of my argument against socialism. Equality of results demands that the state ignore individual differences in talent and effort. A socialist state that demands the expropriation of property to distribute equally will end up giving the same-sized parcels of land to skilled farmers and unskilled urban dwellers, with the result that the former will grow food and the latter will starve. Eventually, the state will have to collect the food and redistribute it. A skilled farmer cannot buy his neighbor's land with his surplus and make it productive, and the neighbor cannot sell his parcel and use the money to build a business that he might be able to run. Stultifying conformity is imposed.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    I will keep trying to understand your argument using logical terms and a line of reasoning, and it helps if you keep your arguments more focused.
    Your inability to grasp my argument does not mean that it is not focused.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    Yes we consider the government to be limited to a legitimate scope, but that very scope of legitimacy has been debated since the nation was formed. A government isn't a natural physical thing with set properties or rules like the atomic weight of Helium. It's a purely symbolic, social structure that exists only as a set of concepts and relations. When you address a social symbolic entity like this as if it were a solid physical thing, you blind yourself to your own presuppositions.
    It is not purely symbolic. It is very real. It exercises real power. When you use phrases like "social symbolic entity", you are babbling. The government of the United States is a group of institutions, defined by law and populated according to law. It has legally mandated divisions, which have legally mandated powers which are limited by the basic documents which established it, and which were ratified by the representatives of the governed. It is real, and it is a solid, physical thing. To pretend otherwise is to attempt to deconstruct reality, but reality doesn't take kindly to being deconstructed.
    --Odysseus
    Sic Hacer Pace, Para Bellum.

    Before you can do things for people, you must be the kind of man who can get things done. But to get things done, you must love the doing, not the people!
    Reply With Quote  
     

  8. #78  
    PORCUS MAXIMUS Rockntractor's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    oklahoma
    Posts
    41,842
    Once again Ody mops the floor with Wei emo, everything is right with the universe.
    How is obama working out for you?
    http://i686.photobucket.com/albums/vv230/upyourstruly/5d569df9-186a-477b-a665-3ea8a8b9b655_zpse9003e54.jpg
    Reply With Quote  
     

  9. #79  
    Our widdle friend. Wei Wu Wei's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    6,414
    Quote Originally Posted by Odysseus View Post
    Sure we do. I used to be pro-choice. I was a registered Democrat until 1989. I grew up and grew to the right.
    Interesting




    This is true, but they can own it, and that is what matters. The government cannot unilaterally take it away from them. They have a right to own property.
    Fair enough.



    Nice try. The right to live is the first, most basic of rights, without which all others are meaningless. The right to sustain your life through the creation and acquisition of property is a logical corollary of that right, but if someone cannot sustain his or herself, it does not eliminate the first right.
    Well it seemed earlier you were arguing that the right to life required the right to own property, because the right to life necessitates a right to sustain oneself and property acquisition is necessary for this.

    I'm curious how you argue that property acquisition is necessary for the right to life. People can and do live full lives without owning any private property.

    1. If a person can live their entire life without owning private property, how can you argue that the right to life necessitates the right to property? How would a person who never owns property's right to life be affected by their inability to purchase property?

    If the right to sustain oneself is not necessary for the right to life, as you say in the case of abortion, then it doesn't matter whether or not property acquisition is a right, because it's not necessary to preserve the right to life.

    We can agree that a person has a right to live, but how is owning a business necessary for that?



    No, again. All property is the result of somebody's efforts, either intellectual, physical or both, but the right to inherit isn't a right of the heir, it is a right of the person who bequeaths it. The property that my children will someday inherit from me is my property. When I die, my last will is the statement of how I want my property disposed of. Hence the term "last will". It is literally the last expression of my will. Their inheritance is based on my right to keep and dispose of my property as I see fit. Once it is no longer mine, then it belongs to my heirs, and it is theirs to use as they see fit.
    Okay that's fine for an elaboration on inheritance rights, but I was asking how inheriting property represents the product of one's own effort? That's fine if you say it's someone else's effort and given to a person, but that doesn't explain how receiving it = effort on one's own part.





    My savings account is a loan to the bank, at a fixed rate of interest. It allows my money to be used for other purposes (such as mortgages, business loans, etc.). The amount of return on a loan is based on the supply of money available and the demands of various borrowers, as well as their likelihood of paying off the loan. High risk loans carry higher interest rates. My investment is a calculated risk, and calculation is effort, too.
    So you are saying that the mental decision required to put money into an account that will accumulate interest is the effort that makes interest a "product of one's effort?"

    It sounds like you are saying anything at all, including making a decision counts as effort. Does deciding to wake up, get dressed, and walk several blocks to a welfare office to get money that you've calculated into your budget count as effort?



    Nice sleight of hand there. I never equated effort and labor. You're trying to take this back to Marxist labor theory.
    I figured you may not agree that effort is the same as labor, which opens up the door for any sort of labor, as in the welfare example listed above.

    In answer to your question, it depends on the contract between A and B. If A is a hired hand, he gets a salary. If he is a tenant farmer, he gets a percentage of the produce or the sale. If he is a partner in the business, then he has a share of the company, based on their contractual obligations. It all depends on what they agree to, and that will depend on a variety of factors. Is land scarce or plentiful? Is labor scarce or plentiful? If land is scarce, and the labor supply is high, the deal for a laborer is going to be less lucrative than if land is plentiful and labor is scarce.
    Assume A is a hired hand. You are saying the commodities produced by A's labor belong to B and a portion is given to A because of an agreement between A and B?

    What this means then, is that the fruits of the labor belong to whom they belong to because of a social agreement, rather than simply going to the person who did the work to produce it. The commodity produced does not go to the person who's effort produced it. It belongs to the person who owns it and is divided up according to an agreement.

    Workers work for wages precisely because they do not own the products of their own labor. This economic relationship between the owner of the land and the worker of the land only functions because the worker does not own the products that he produces with his labor.

    Therefore, your implication that private property is the product of one's own labor is incorrect. It's an expression of a social relationship. A owner of private property can "earn" money without doing a single iota of work towards producing goods, selling goods, or running the business (as if often done by shareholders of companies).

    Private property can belong to someone without them doing any productive work whatsoever, while a person who do all the work can have no ownership over the property.



    Or not. The owner of the land has other options. He can let it lay fallow, parcel it out and sell it, develop it for other uses, or sit in one corner of it and paint landscapes all day. You are attempting to apply an arbitrary morality to voluntary transactions which are completely moral with or without your approval.
    I'm not ascribing morality to it.



    How long would the former business owners be permitted to call the government thieves on government-owned stations? Can you cite an example of a state-owned media monopoly that is permitted to criticize the state?
    Are you saying that the people who own the media control the messages? Is this true when the media is owned my mega-corporations?

    Also, non-profit organizations can and do produce news media. If an organization is not producing a commodity, it's not a private business and wouldn't be government controlled.

    What would stop a non-profit organization from speaking their mind?





    A state that can take your factory, your home, your car or any other property can take your arms as well. And a state that wants to take your factory, your home, your car or any other property will start with your arms, because it will make all other resistance futile.
    A state interesed in private property would have no interest in your car or your home or your record collection or anything else like that.
    Quote Originally Posted by Adam Smith - Wealth of Nations
    It is not very unreasonable that the rich should contribute to the public expense, not only in proportion to their revenue, but something more than in that proportion.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  10. #80  
    Our widdle friend. Wei Wu Wei's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    6,414
    Quote Originally Posted by Odysseus View Post
    I know what you are saying, and it is a false distinction. All property is property.
    Again, you don't have to agree with this in a legal sense, but the distinction is important because when I say "no private property", I'm not talking about any goods for individual use. Property that is used to produce commodities to be sold on the market for profit is different than property that you consume for their own uses.

    A house used for shelter is not the same as a house used for rent. Private property requires other people, a flow of money, and economic activity.

    My car, my house and my business are my property, and there is no difference between them. For example, if I own a house, and move, but keep it as a rental property, it becomes a business. At that point, the Marxist definition changes it from my personal property to my private property, and permits its expropriation. It's still my house, and I may have intended to retire to it somewhere down the line, but that's no longer an option. Let's say that I own a family farm, and we have a harvest. I hire temporary labor to bring in the crops, which I have nurtured throughout the year. My personal land then becomes private land. If I work my land and have a surplus that I sell, my surplus marks me as a business, rather than a subsistence farmer. My property is therefore changed arbitrarily from personal to private to public. Marx's distinction is therefore nonsensical.

    It's not nonsensical and existing US laws already recognize the difference between these. I'll give a simple example:

    Say I purchase a movie, Iron Man 2. That DVD belongs to me, it's my Personal Property. I can watch it, I can make wind chimes out of it, I can submerge it in water, I can eat it if I so choose. If I play it on a big screen tv and eat popcorn that is perfectly fine. However, if I decide to charge people to come into my house and watch the movie, it's different.

    How is that different? Why is it that playing it on the tv is fine, but charging people to see it is not? It's because US law recognizes a difference between property that is used for your own consumption and property that is used as a business to generate money.

    In a sense, the law already recognizes the difference between Personal Property and Private Property. So let's use your logic:

    It's my DVD and there is no difference between property I own and property I use to generate money. I can put the DVD into my DVD player and that's fine, but at some arbitrary moment, when I charge money for my friends to come watch, it becomes illegal? Even if I charge money to see it, I can still use it as Personal Property in the future. If I wanted, a month from now I could watch it myself without charging anything. So why does the law treat one of these issues differently?

    It's because they are different. You own the movie for Personal use, but not for Private use. This distinction is the only way these laws can function.


    But, as a socialist, you do advocate it. And you are wrong. Property rights are the basis of all other rights, with one exception, which I have explained above.
    What about the freedom of religion? If the State owned all private property, how would that prevent you from going to church?

    Private property owners are not allowed to discriminate based on religion, so if the state owned the property, it would be illegal for the state to do so.

    In fact, millions of Americans already work for state-owned institutions and they have no infringements on their rights of religion, speech, or anything else.



    If, by not addressing your point, you mean that I demonstrated that it is not valid, then you are correct. Cuba is bad, and is not free, because it has no property rights. However, since you want to play that, let's have at it again.

    First of all, health care and education are not rights.
    The government recognizes them as rights.


    You cannot have a right that is contingent on someone else supplying it for free. I do not have the right to uncompensated labor from someone else, because I do not have the right to make that person my slave.
    Just because you don't pay them doesn't mean they are not paid. If someone breaks into my home and the police come, I don't have to hand them my credit card to pay for them, and they are not slaves.

    I have a right to be secure in my person and home, and the police are meant to protect that right, and the police are a free service. It's true that they are paid with taxes, but even if a person doesn't pay taxes, they still have the right to equal protection under the law.

    So you can, indeed have a right that is contingent on someone else supplying it for free.

    It doesn't matter if that person is a doctor, a teacher, or the person whose taxes pay for the doctor or teacher. The state cannot simply decide that health care or education is a right.
    Why not? It seems that your argument that you can't have a right that is contingent on someone else supplying it for free doesn't hold up.

    Do you have another argument, or can you refine your first argument to address my criticism?

    Again, back to property: A doctor's practice, his business, is his private property. I have no right to demand his services, but I have every right to purchase them, if he is willing to sell them. If I demand his services without his consent, then I have enslaved him, and he has no rights. If the government enslaves him on my behalf, he is still enslaved. Without property rights, the doctor is a slave to the state.
    Are public school teachers slaves? Parents and children have a right to demand their services without paying them, and tax payers foot the bill for that too.







    [quote]Except that the government has not recognized a right, it has enslaved one group of people and forced them to provide services to another group, which it then claims is a right. However, since nobody has any rights, the health care and educational services are not rights, so much as the largess of a sovereign to his serfs. They are the bones thrown to dogs by feudal lords. If a feudal lord "recognized" a right to eat for free, and fed his serfs and dogs the same scraps, can you truly say that these are rights?

    Are you a slave? You work for the government. I don't have to write you a check to do your job, even if that job benefits me. If the US is invaded by a foreign army I can demand that the military work to defend the nation, without having to pay upfront.

    Now I know you are going to try to illustrate the difference between government functions that are necessary and constitutionally authorized vs those that are not. However, before you do, I should point out that that is an argument about the role of the government, not an argument about what is at hand here.

    What we are discussing here is whether you can have a right that requires someone else to do something without you paying them up front. Police, military, teachers, social workers, and all other government employees do this all the time.




    Well, for one thing, the government w
    ould own all of the publishing houses. Does Hugo Chavez permit dissent? Does Castro?
    PBS is a non-profit media organization that regularly has right-wingers on the air espousing anti-government viewpoints.



    Quote Originally Posted by Wei Wu Wei View Post
    Would that allow police to enter the personal homes of shareholders without reasonable cause and warrants?

    Of course it would. If you live in state-owned housing, the state has the same rights as your landlord, which is control of the property, but unlike a private landlord, it also controls the courts and the enforcement of law, therefore it can evict you at will, and if it can do that, then anything short of eviction, such as opening your doors to the police, are hardly impositions. After all, the police can simply evict you from your home and then search it. No property rights, no home ownership rights.
    First, you could still have your own home, just not be the landlord of a rented property.

    Second, public housing already exists and the people who live there still have their rights. The police cannot arbitrarily enter their homes without going through the proper legal routes. The fact that these not privately owned doesn't mean you don't have rights in them.

    Even if the state did have the same rights as your landlord, that still doesn't mean they have unlimited rights. Almost every state in the US has restrictions on when and how landlords can enter a home. Landlords also must give notice before evictions.



    It might, if the state decided that only those who worship a certain way could work in state-run enterprises, which would be all of them. That's pretty much the idea behind the various communist states' persecution of religious groups.
    That's already illegal for the state to do with it's employees. Having more employees wouldn't change that.




    That is not true. A government in which property is privately held will not use lethal force against petty thieves, for example. It is only when the state owns all property that petty crimes become crimes against the state.
    1. Stealing land is not petty thievery. Again, you're conflating the two forms of property.

    2. Also, the state certainly would use lethal force against a petty thief who resisted the police.

    3. Crimes against the state do not mean lethal punishment. Tax evasion is a crime against the state but you don't get the death sentence for it.
    Quote Originally Posted by Adam Smith - Wealth of Nations
    It is not very unreasonable that the rich should contribute to the public expense, not only in proportion to their revenue, but something more than in that proportion.
    Reply With Quote  
     

Bookmarks
Bookmarks
Posting Permissions
  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •