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ebrostig
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 29, 2004 1:42 pm    Post subject: Libertarians - The Flat Earth Society of politics Reply with quote

While we are still in the midst of a tragic catastrophy in Asia from the tsunami, the very interesting question comes up. Since I don't want to hi-jack other threads, I figured I'd start a new one.

In the aftermath of the unimaginable catastrophy, I started to think how this would have been handled if numerous countries, both involved directly and indirectly had been libertarian.

A libertarian society would have a minimal governement and no (or very low) taxes and no means of handling such a catastrophy. How would you libertarian fanboys suggest how this would be handled?

My homecountry, Norway, have currently about 1400 people missing and numerous others stranded in the area and the last I saw was that the government are sending planes to get people home, sending relief workers and supplies to help the areas hit. This is ofcourse all paid for by taxes and nobody, NOBODY, is asking "Who is going to pay for this?"

This catastrophy will probably end up with more than 100.000 dead and cost more than $ 100.000.000.000 (my guesstimate). In a libertarian utopia, who would pay for it?

In a libertarian utopia, the governements would not have resources to handle the situation.

One of the biggest problems afterwards will be in the line of health issues. An enormous amount of deaths like this in an area were a body starts to decompose very quickly due to heat and humidity, is an enormous health hazard. Without organized healthcare and public fundings, I would imagine another few hundred thousands of deaths as a consequence.

To me this catastrophy is another example of how libetarianism is the Flat Earth Society of politics and not useful for anything but a paper exercise.

Erik
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 29, 2004 2:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

excuse me, wtf is libertarianism? seriously. ok let me check on the wikipidea.org, he he.

Oh. i have to study it some more time. we call it no-government theory.

conclusion: Fuck it. the world is getting fucked up because human beings can not restraint desire, greed and evil.

tired to discuss about it, have to think of a better argument. pause.
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 29, 2004 2:30 pm    Post subject: Re: Libertarians - The Flat Earth Society of politics Reply with quote

ebrostig wrote:

A libertarian society would have a minimal governement and no (or very low) taxes and no means of handling such a catastrophy. How would you libertarian fanboys suggest how this would be handled?


first of all, i agree with you but wanted to add my on 10cents ;)

libertarianism is imo not able to handle large scale problems but this question will never be asked, because however you turn it, libertarianism is known not to work in a large scale society.

libertarianism in best case is self-regulating "you piss me off - i shoot you" therefore libertarian systems are busy with theirselfs and due to that overhead a libertarian system is unable to work when it reaches a certain scale.

however, if a libertarian system (for what reason ever) would be able to exist in such a large scale to be in possession of funds to handle such a catastrophy it simply wouldnt act. why?

libertarian systems consist of highly individualistic selfish persons who are generally unwilling to accept restrictions of any kind. helping financially in such a situation would mean to restrict the way money is spent what somehow is not acceptable for a libertarian because that trims his own freedom.

not considering the fact that due to very low taxes and whatelse no funds in the needed amount are available.

ebrostig wrote:

To me this catastrophy is another example of how libetarianism is the Flat Earth Society of politics and not useful for anything but a paper exercise.


yip ;)
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 29, 2004 2:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The whole ideology is patently ridiculous. Why would an economic system function as a form of government? Such a system will degenerate into plutocracy. If everyone is looking out for their best interests and wants to make money then say good bye to decent wages and worker's rights. There will be a few higher ups at certain mega corps that will be rich. The libertarians believe that in an unrestricted free market with no government they'll somehow make more money because they're not paying taxes. There's no way they can handle anything for the common good. In a poor, selfish society no one's going to fund disaster relief with their money.
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 29, 2004 2:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A libetarian government is still a government though in simplified form.

(I'm not a Libetarian, I'm definitely not a Liberal, and I've disagreed with about 1/2 of Bush's post election "mandates")

I don't know where that puts me politically now.
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 29, 2004 3:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

stonent wrote:
A libetarian government is still a government though in simplified form.


but how can one talk about a serious government if any attempt to govern encounters massive resistance in population?

government (even in simple forms) only works if individuals within the political system accept restrictions of their freedom in order to allow a peaceful cooperation.
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 29, 2004 3:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I find myself amazed.....agreeing with one of Ericks posts. Gotta go splash cold water on my face.
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 29, 2004 4:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Saying that we need a monolithic government to force us to provide help and resources to those in need is like saying we are inherently evil (perhaps we are, but i am not willing to admit that just yet)

In a libertarian society we as a world community would give money, because that is the right thing to do and not because someone tells us that we have to.

A monolithic government is probably much more efficient in catastrophic situations, but it is far fetched to think that a libertarian society wouldnt do anything at all.
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 29, 2004 4:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

tageiru wrote:
Saying that we need a monolithic government to force us to provide help and resources to those in need is like saying we are inherently evil (perhaps we are, but i am not willing to admit that just yet)

Nobody said that, that is your statement.

tageiru wrote:

In a libertarian society we as a world community would give money, because that is the right thing to do and not because someone tells us that we have to.

Where is the money coming from?

tageiru wrote:

A monolithic government is probably much more efficient in catastrophic situations, but it is far fetched to think that a libertarian society wouldnt do anything at all.

What would they do?

Erik
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 29, 2004 5:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

tageiru wrote:
Saying that we need a monolithic government to force us to provide help and resources to those in need is like saying we are inherently evil (perhaps we are, but i am not willing to admit that just yet)

Typical libertarian rhetoric. Providing those services in a fair and efficient manner nation wide is a huge undertaking. It's not the sort of thing a single citizen could organize in their spare time after work. In the same way the government looks after our roadways and water works, they look after emergency social services. It has nothing to do with anyone being "evil". Although now you mention it, I can't think of a more evil system than the libertarian dream of "might (or wealth) makes right".
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 29, 2004 6:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

papal_authority wrote:
tageiru wrote:
Saying that we need a monolithic government to force us to provide help and resources to those in need is like saying we are inherently evil (perhaps we are, but i am not willing to admit that just yet)

Typical libertarian rhetoric. Providing those services in a fair and efficient manner nation wide is a huge undertaking. It's not the sort of thing a single citizen could organize in their spare time after work. In the same way the government looks after our roadways and water works, they look after emergency social services. It has nothing to do with anyone being "evil". Although now you mention it, I can't think of a more evil system than the libertarian dream of "might (or wealth) makes right".


I can. Any socialist system which takes money from me to give to someone else, without allowing me to do it myself, is just as evil and disgusting as a religious government (like George W.) which tries to force it's biased views down others throats.

You say you hate Mr. Bush, but in all reality, you're just like him.

Anyone who likes to force their views and have a mafia-like collection agency is a dictatorship.

Democrasy is dead, long live democrasy.

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 29, 2004 6:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Zaphod42 wrote:

Democrasy is dead, long live democrasy.

-KL

Did it ever occur to you that in order to be able to speak of a democracy there need to be institutions that are democratically controlled (a.k.a government), that these institutions need other institutions in order to be able to do anything (a.k.a. bearaucracy) and that these instititutions need funding in order to function (a.k.a. taxes)?
Obviously not.
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 29, 2004 6:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ah Zaphod42, it's been a while :twisted:

Zaphod42 wrote:
I can. Any socialist system which takes money from me to give to someone else, without allowing me to do it myself, is just as evil and disgusting as a religious government (like George W.) which tries to force it's biased views down others throats.

Hardly. The government is the enforcer of the social contract. They are employed by the citizens to act on our behalf in certain matters. To do this funds are needed and collected from the citizens. It is not theft no matter how much you claim it is. Most libertarians favour a minimal government and even a military. Newsflash, neither the minimal government nor the military will be free. So you'll still have taxes. You guys whine about taxes going to the welfare state but for some reason military use is just fine. Most sane people are the opposite.

Zaphod42 wrote:
You say you hate Mr. Bush, but in all reality, you're just like him.

Not.

Zaphod42 wrote:
Anyone who likes to force their views and have a mafia-like collection agency is a dictatorship.

It's called democracy. You have a voice. Heck if you hate it so much, you can leave. The clean roads, modern sewage system, garbage collection, policing and health care aren't free you know.
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 29, 2004 7:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well according to the socialist UN, the West is being too stingy in their aid and that if they just raised taxes they could afford to chip in more. Unbelievable!

As to the question, I think you are confusing libertarians with anarchists, ebrostig. Libertarians are not against taxation and core government services, they are just against unfair taxation, double taxation, unnecessary bloat of government, and authoritarian government interference in the market.

So to answer, in a libertarian society that worked properly, there would be plenty of money for an internal disaster. The money gained from use taxes and saved from cutting the fat off of a bloated government would create a nice surplus.
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 29, 2004 7:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

paranode wrote:
Libertarians are not against taxation and core government services, they are just against unfair taxation, double taxation, unnecessary bloat of government, and authoritarian government interference in the market.

What, exactly, would be fair taxation? There aren't many people that aren't against government bloat. Nearly everyone is. That does not make libertarianism unique or viable. What is unique and ridiculous about libertarianism is it's dismantling of government funded social services coupled with its belief that a free economic market will magically make everyone rich :roll:
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 29, 2004 7:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

paranode wrote:
Well according to the socialist UN.....


me thinks, you are confused right here!

paranode wrote:
....the West is being too stingy in their aid.....


you know what? i agree! there should be done everything possible to help as quick as possible! NO MATTER WHAT!

paranode wrote:
...and that if they just raised taxes they could afford to chip in more. Unbelievable!


could you kindly point me to the source of that statement?
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 29, 2004 7:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

papal_authority wrote:
What, exactly, would be fair taxation? There aren't many people that aren't against government bloat. Nearly everyone is. That does not make libertarianism unique or viable. What is unique and ridiculous about libertarianism is it's dismantling of government funded social services coupled with its belief that a free economic market will magically make everyone rich :roll:


On the contrary, the popular parties are all about government bloat. More social services, more government agencies, more ways to waste your tax money on things the private industry does just fine. Both social and corporate welfare are rampant, you just don't see the waste they generate unless you are a recipient or a government employee. In the government, organizations are given a budget. Most of the time they will fall short of this budget and actually have a surplus. So what do they do? They spend the rest of their surplus on toys and goodies so that this year's budget spending was close to the last one and the next one will be the same or greater.

I've never heard anyone in the Libertarian party claim that a free economic market makes everyone rich. What it does do, however, is force the industries to be accountable to the consumers. When you can get something from multiple sources and one source has terrible service and is wasteful, the market will deal with them appropriately by not choosing them. Critical services such as hospitals and police can be maintained by the government because they are obviously necessary relief. As it stands now, you have one source for critical services and that source is the government. They are inefficient, bloated, and do not care about customer satisfaction or worry about being competitive because they simply do not have to and their funds are guaranteed by the government through taxes instead of being voluntarily surrendered in exchange for service as with most business transactions.

Take insurance as an example. The capitalist way of doing things is via competing insurance companies. If one company treats its customers poorly and is inefficient and hard to deal with, they will lose their business because of it. Socialists do not like the word insurance so they try and hide it in the government and fund it from taxes. The end result is that you pay higher taxes for the same services, only you may not know how your money is spent and you cannot switch companies when the service is poor.

Would the system run perfeclty? No, of course not. It would need some regulation to keep companies from frauding consumers. It would probably need minimal social servies required to get people off of the government teet and into a job. Would the system run better than the current one? I think it would because it discourages wastefulness and restores accountability to the services we deal with that are currently government-run and mandatory whether you use them or not.
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 29, 2004 7:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

loki99 wrote:
could you kindly point me to the source of that statement?


Quote:
But U.N. Undersecretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs Jan Egeland suggested that the United States and other Western nations were being "stingy" with relief funds, saying there would be more available if taxes were raised.


Source

We donate billions to the development of these countries each year, whether there's a tsunami or not.
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 29, 2004 7:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

papal_authority wrote:
Ah Zaphod42, it's been a while :twisted:


I know. Once in a while, I have to throw in something to get everyone riled up. Don't take it personally, I have no ill wishes upon any of my OTW friends. If we can agree to disagree, we can still enjoy the differences we all have.

I mean, if everyone had the same views, it would get damn boring now wouldn't it :-)

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 29, 2004 8:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

*sighs* good and evil are two terms that are subjective to the views of the current society.

a good example of this is the old roman army, if the unit performed poorly they would decimate the ranks, that is stand everyone in neat little line and kill every other soldier starting from one end to the other. back then this was viewed as a good thing, now we would equate this with what we would call evil such as dictators
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 29, 2004 8:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

paranode wrote:
<-- moderate and for the most part agreeable views -->

That's the most moderate libertarian stance I've ever read. I basically agree with your view on streamlining government spending and keeping some sort of welfare state. I disagree with privatizing healthcare and policing though. I agree it needs to be cleaned up (in both our countries) but not privatized. A company that answers to no one other than its shareholders controlling an armed police force? No thanks. It does seem that libertarianism is gaining more and more popularity in the U.S. (e.g. the last election results) and I'd say that this is a reaction to the horrendous two party system currently in place down there.
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 29, 2004 8:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

paranode wrote:
When you can get something from multiple sources and one source has terrible service and is wasteful, the market will deal with them appropriately by not choosing them

Then why Microsoft corporation is still around and has 90% market share?
paranode wrote:
They are inefficient, bloated, and do not care about customer satisfaction or worry about being competitive because they simply do not have to

Yep, definetely you have Microsoft in mind :P
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 29, 2004 8:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

paranode wrote:
a very nice argument

If that's libertarianism then how do you explain people like Stormy Eyes? Your views seem more like the views of the Republican party before the religious right took over.
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 29, 2004 8:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I wouldn't think they would do much of anything... They are libertarians. Which is why no Government is based on it... Well some swing in that direction - but are rather far from strict libertarianism.
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 29, 2004 8:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

yardbird wrote:
Then why Microsoft corporation is still around and has 90% market share?

Outside of the Gentoo Forums where people pay for software, Microsoft provides the people with what they want. Most people are content with it, and that's the deal. Microsoft is not a good example though, because they are in many markets, though that's not plainly obvious. In the OS market, where they are renowned, the alternatives are just not ready for primetime. In the browser market, for example, there are some good alternatives gaining ground. In other markets, such as games, software tools, and various other programs there is much competition.
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