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Thread: What do you think of Land Value Tax (LVT)

  1. #661

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    Quote Originally Posted by MattButler View Post
    I do not agree with Geoists who say that the entire tax on land is born solely by the owner. I believe owners will in fact pass off some amount of the tax to his tenants. The proportions will vary based on the market, but in most cases, tenants will not completely escape the tax.
    This is a very tricky and counter-intuitive point of economics, and many people do not understand it. It's not a matter of what geoists say, but rather a law of economics. The fixity of land's supply means the landowner CANNOT pass on the tax to tenants, because they will just go elsewhere, and he will lose money.
    In theory, the amount passed on to the tenant should enable the landowner to earn the prevailing real interest rate in the market's structure of production.
    No, he has to earn a return by production.
    As I tried to explain in above paragraph, landowners earn and keep all surplus income on capital assets above and beyond the required uses imposed by LVT, but as for the land itself, assuming they are an average entrepreneur, their income and capital gains from pure ownership of the land will equal the prevailing real interest rate found in the rest of the structure of production.
    But with full rent recovery, the land is acquired for free, so his return is also zero.
    So you see this is different than the view that the owner alone bears the tax and accrues no profits from owning land! Instead I say he will earn no excess profits above the prevailing market rate of interest in the structure of production.
    I suggest you define exactly what you mean by the landowner passing on the land tax to tenants.
    Owning and managing land is, after all, an essential function in the structure of production.
    Owning land is pure parasitism. "Managing" it is vacuous: nature maintains it in its natural state without assistance, and the market decides the best use for it; then it's just a matter of accepting the high bid. Using it is the part that is essential to production.
    As for calling it theft, I think that is unfair.
    It's a flat-out lie.
    This is not an uncompensated taking of land.
    Right: that's what the landowner does.
    I respect that people have sentimental attachment to land in some cases were born there and inherited.
    And lots of people had sentimental attachments to their slaves. So?



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  3. #662
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    Roy, in what sense are you opposed to initiation of force?
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  4. #663

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    Quote Originally Posted by helmuth_hubener View Post
    Roy, in what sense are you opposed to initiation of force?
    In the sense that it is initiation of force to deprive someone of what they would otherwise have that constitutes a violation of their rights.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Roy L View Post
    In the sense that it is initiation of force to deprive someone of what they would otherwise have that constitutes a violation of their rights.
    So not in the sense that it's initiation of force to use force against someone aggressively. I.e.: nothing to do with the actual definition of the words actually in the phrase. You are just using the phrase because.... why? It seems to have nothing to do with your political views nor any of your underlying reasons for holding those views. Your views appear, correct me if I'm wrong, to be rooted in practicality. You are likely only using it and making other arguments of morality about slavery, evil, etc., because you think that your readers, unlike you, do base their views on morality. This is probably the reason that you sound so ridiculous making such arguments: your heart isn't really in it, it's just a tool in the rhetorical arsenal. It's why you really sincerely can't relate to the idea that injustice can't be corrected by compensating the aggreived. You never did get it that a slave is a slave because he cannot quit, and even if you pay him a million dollars a year, give him a palace, and only force him to work one hour a week, nothing can make up for or compensate for that hour a week of slavery. That just doesn't click for you.

    So, advocate a land tax. Advocate a tax on smoking. But don't try to pretend that such taxes are based on some stretched and contorted version of libertarian ethics. I mean, you want to tax smoking! The smoker is not initiating force against anyone by smoking -- you initiate force against him by demanding his money. The land-owner is not initiating force against anyone by owning land -- you initiate force against him by demanding his money. This is, to take a page out of your book, "indisputable". You will of course reply that "no, I already proved to you that it's indiputable that it is initiation of force to own land", but I don't think your heart will really be in it. You are just spouting the words that you think are the right ones to say so you've memorized them. In reality, you have come to the conclusion that taxing land would increase the efficiency of the economy and correct many major "market failures" as you see them, and so you advocate it. Purely utilitarian. Just as taxing smoking would supposedly increase the total utility of society. There's obviously no moral justification for that tax, yet you advocate it.

    It's all just about adding and subtracting utils in your mind. That is why you will never win the moral debate. An-cap owns the moral side of the debate with a consistent, radical approach to the question: when is it permissible to use violence against other human beings? Surrender the moral side, and focus on the practical arguments. Because honestly you haven't laid forth that side of the case in a very solid, unified, and convincing manner yet either, and that is where you probably could shine.
    Last edited by helmuth_hubener; 10-29-2011 at 11:06 AM.
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  6. #665

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    Quote Originally Posted by helmuth_hubener View Post
    So not in the sense that it's initiation of force to use force against someone aggressively.
    Yes, in just that sense because "aggressively" means with invasive or menacing intent, such as intent to invade someone's rights by depriving them of what they would otherwise have. You know: the way landowners initiate the use of force aggressively, with intent to menace and invade others' rights by depriving them of the liberty they would otherwise have to use the land.

    I knew when I saw your question that you intended to lie about my answer, whatever it was. Thanks for living down to my expectations.
    I.e.: nothing to do with the actual definition of the words actually in the phrase.
    No, that is just another stupid lie from you about what I have plainly written.
    You are just using the phrase because.... why?
    Because it proves my position is logically consistent, while yours is not.
    It seems to have nothing to do with your political views nor any of your underlying reasons for holding those views.
    Lie.
    Your views appear, correct me if I'm wrong, to be rooted in practicality.
    You are wrong. They are practical only in the same sense that all objective truth is practical. They are rooted in total commitment to liberty, justice and truth.
    You are likely only using it and making other arguments of morality about slavery, evil, etc., because you think that your readers, unlike you, do base their views on morality.
    No, I make moral arguments regarding slavery, evil, etc. because they are literally true.
    This is probably the reason that you sound so ridiculous making such arguments: your heart isn't really in it, it's just a tool in the rhetorical arsenal.
    <yawn> Have you watched "Judgment at Nuremberg" yet? My argument is not rhetoric. It's the literal truth.

    I notice you have long since given up trying to respond to my demolition of your absurd and evil claims with any kind of rational argument. It's all just ad hominem speculations, derision, name-calling, etc. now.
    It's why you really sincerely can't relate to the idea that injustice can't be corrected by compensating the aggreived.
    <yawn> Google "tort law" and start reading. Then get back to me if you ever want to talk about anything relevant to reality.
    You never did get it that a slave is a slave because he cannot quit, and even if you pay him a million dollars a year, give him a palace, and only force him to work one hour a week, nothing can make up for or compensate for that hour a week of slavery. That just doesn't click for you.
    It doesn't click because it is objectively false. Offer any ACTUAL slave that deal, and they will grab at it and laugh in your silly, lying face for being so stone stupid and dishonest as to claim the money and palace don't compensate for the mere hour a week of compulsory labor.

    Your claim is just false and absurd, like all your other claims.

    The law makes many provisions for compensation in cases where people's rights are violated by force, and no one but a stupid, lying sack of $#!+ claims it's some sort of intolerable tyranny. For example, when there is a forest fire, able-bodied people can be compelled to help fight it, and are then paid a set wage for their labor. Only a stupid, lying sack of $#!+ would claim they are slaves. When there is an epidemic, the sick can be forcibly quarantined, and no one but a stupid, lying sack of $#!+ would claim they are being abducted. Etc.
    So, advocate a land tax. Advocate a tax on smoking. But don't try to pretend that such taxes are based on some stretched and contorted version of libertarian ethics.
    It is feudal libertarian "ethics" like yours that are stretched and contorted. As I have proved.
    I mean, you want to tax smoking! The smoker is not initiating force against anyone by smoking
    Yes, he is: his second-hand smoke is a toxic invasion of others' rights; smoking causes many fires, which are a public menace, violate people's rights, and are fought at public expense; and smokers litter public spaces with their toxic butts, which can kill a child, pet or wildlife. It is not practical to obtain compensation from each individual smoker who initiates force against others in these ways, so it is entirely justified to tax cigarettes at the point of sale, and recover the cost from all smokers. A similar argument can be made for requiring drivers to pay for compulsory public liability insurance. The fact that most of them will never impose on society the cost of serious injuries in an at-fault auto accident is irrelevant, because those who do usually can't pay for them.
    -- you initiate force against him by demanding his money.
    No, it's compensation for the costs he and other smokers impose on society by smoking, which also include emergency medical care for indigent smokers. See the auto insurance argument.
    The land-owner is not initiating force against anyone by owning land --
    That's plainly just a lie. He forcibly deprives others of their liberty to use the land. You know this. Of course you do. It is self-evident and indisputable. You have merely decided deliberately to lie about it, because you have already realized that it proves your beliefs are false and evil.
    you initiate force against him by demanding his money.
    The rent of land -- the economic advantage obtainable by using it -- is publicly created, and he is forcibly depriving others of that opportunity. This is indisputable. Requiring him to compensate the community of those whose rights he forcibly violates by depriving them of it is not initiation of force, so stop lying.
    This is, to take a page out of your book, "indisputable".
    No, it is not, because I just disproved it.
    You will of course reply that "no, I already proved to you that it's indiputable that it is initiation of force to own land", but I don't think your heart will really be in it.
    It is, because I did, and it is.
    You are just spouting the words that you think are the right ones to say so you've memorized them.
    I've memorized them because no matter how many times I repeat the proof, lying apologists for landowner privilege, being unable to respond to it, just dismiss and ignore it.
    In reality, you have come to the conclusion that taxing land would increase the efficiency of the economy and correct many major "market failures" as you see them, and so you advocate it. Purely utilitarian.
    In reality, you are just makin' $#!+ up again. LVT would increase economic efficiency, and that is a good enough reason to replace unjust, inefficient and harmful taxes with it. But that is not the basic reason for it.
    Just as taxing smoking would supposedly increase the total utility of society.
    It compensates forcible imposition of costs on others, like taxing land.
    There's obviously no moral justification for that tax, yet you advocate it.
    I have stated the moral justification above.
    It's all just about adding and subtracting utils in your mind.
    In fact, I don't even think about utility.
    That is why you will never win the moral debate.
    I have already won it.
    An-cap owns the moral side of the debate with a consistent, radical approach to the question: when is it permissible to use violence against other human beings?
    It's not consistent, as already proved. It just says, "It's not OK to enslave or murder people, unless you are a landowner." I have already proved that, and you agreed that I had stated that an-cap position accurately. You even stated explicitly that you approved of Dirtowner Harry initiating force to murder Thirsty, and Crusoe initiating force to enslave Friday. You even stated that the enslaver and murderer were heroes.

    Your amoral an-cap speculations are just irrelevant to any realistic approach to design of a practical economic order.
    Surrender the moral side, and focus on the practical arguments.
    LOL! I have already won, and you urge me to surrender!
    Because honestly you haven't laid forth that side of the case in a very solid, unified, and convincing manner yet either, and that is where you probably could shine.
    Apologists for landowner privilege know they have already lost on the practical economic arguments, that's why they always retreat to, "But you can't steal MY LAND because it's MINE!" Just as you have done.

  7. #666
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roy L View Post
    It's not consistent, as already proved. It just says, "It's not OK to enslave or murder people, unless you are a landowner."
    Wrong, respectfully, because of the word "just". It also says, "It's not OK to enslave or murder people, unless you are a smoker". Furthermore, "It's not OK to enslave or murder people, unless you are an alcohol drinker". And don't forget the famous, "It's not OK to enslave or murder people, unless you drive automobiles". And many more!

    You see, an-cap allows all kinds of groups to enslave or murder people by failing to steal their stuff. If we were serious about not ever allowing enslavement or murder, obviously we would be going around and stealing stuff from people in all walks of life, for a practically unlimited list of activities.

    That is obvious... isn't it?
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    Quote Originally Posted by helmuth_hubener View Post
    Wrong, respectfully, because of the word "just". It also says, "It's not OK to enslave or murder people, unless you are a smoker". Furthermore, "It's not OK to enslave or murder people, unless you are an alcohol drinker". And don't forget the famous, "It's not OK to enslave or murder people, unless you drive automobiles". And many more!
    It is difficult to enslave people by smoking, drinking, or driving an automobile (which I suppose distinguishes those activities from landowning), but many, many people have been killed or suffered financial or other losses through others smoking, drinking, and driving, as well as through their landowning. As an acolyte of an-cap nonsense, you just want those killers and imposers of other losses to be privileged to initiate force against their victims, and not have to pay for the deprivations they impose.
    You see, an-cap allows all kinds of groups to enslave or murder people by failing to steal their stuff.
    No, now you are just lying again, because requiring just compensation for violation of rights -- or for placing others unwillingly at risk of such violation -- is not stealing. An-cap simply does not require such compensation, consequently allowing certain privileged initiators of force (especially landowners, but also smokers, drinkers and drivers) to violate others' rights with impunity. By failing to require just compensation from those who initiate force in violation of others' rights (failing to "steal their stuff" in your absurd and dishonest parlance), an-cap enables initiation of force against all their victims, depriving the latter of their rights.

    And of course, land is not anyone's "stuff" except in the same formal, legal sense that slaves were when slavery was sanctioned by law. So as all would otherwise be at liberty to use the land, it is in fact LANDOWNERS who are doing the stealing, by initiating force to deprive everyone else of their liberty.
    If we were serious about not ever allowing enslavement or murder,
    Which you obviously are not -- quite the contrary, as you have explicitly admitted.
    obviously we would be going around and stealing stuff from people in all walks of life, for a practically unlimited list of activities.
    No, it would be limited to the activities that inherently initiate force against others, or put them unwillingly at significant risk of having force initiated against them in violation of their rights.
    That is obvious... isn't it?
    No, it's just absurd, dishonest nonsense, like every other rationalization for privilege and injustice that you have offered, or ever will offer.

  9. #668
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roy L View Post
    put them unwillingly at significant risk
    Life=Risk.
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  10. #669

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    Quote Originally Posted by helmuth_hubener View Post
    Life=Risk.
    Prudence=Managing Risk

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    Quote Originally Posted by helmuth_hubener View Post
    Life=Risk.
    ...and Roy L. doesn't seem to disagree. Let's follow the logic of Roy L.'s premises:

    Any creation of risk for others is initiation of force.
    Any initiation of force should be (not ended, but) taxed.*
    All life is risky. The fact of living creates some degree of risk for others. Virtually any action we take puts some others into at least some tiny amount of danger, most of these dangers larger than that of burning alive from a cigarette butt, and we have already established that danger to be an initiation of force..

    Ergo, all life should be taxed. We need a tax on life.

    Q.E.D.

    * (Or, OK, just to avoid the tiresome "I do not! Do not!! Do not!!!"s: all initiation of force should either be ended or taxed. Presumably Roy L. would be OK with something like murder being actually abolished, rather than taxed, but most 'initiations of force', such as drinking hot coffee, riding a bicycle, or getting up in the morning, are just taxed under his system. And even those things abolished would of course have some 'reasonable exceptions' for times when the government 'really needs to do it', like enslaving people to put out a fire in a forest it mismanaged, or perhaps murdering people in order to promote freedom and democracy.)
    Last edited by helmuth_hubener; 10-31-2011 at 10:20 AM.
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  12. #671

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    Quote Originally Posted by helmuth_hubener View Post
    Let's follow the logic of Roy L.'s premises:
    Without reading any further, I know this means that you will be making up false premises and falsely and dishonestly attributing them to me. I.e., you will be continuing your firmly established pattern of lying about what I have plainly written.
    Any creation of risk for others is initiation of force.
    It risks initiating force. Maybe the force will be initiated, maybe not. The drunk driver may or may not hit someone on the way home, but reasonable people (i.e., not you) understand that he is putting others at heightened and unacceptable risk whether he hits anyone or not. Your evil and insane an-cap "philosophy" just says people should be free to drive drunk unless they "initiate force" by knocking down pedestrians. It's that simple.
    Any initiation of force should be (not ended, but) taxed.*
    No, that's obviously just a bald lie about what I have plainly written. Initiation of force to deprive people of what they would otherwise have, as landowners do, is clearly a violation of their rights, which government exists to prevent and/or redress. Of course violation of rights should be prevented where possible. The basis of LVT is that once people start making fixed improvements to land, initiation of force and consequent violation of rights cannot be avoided. If the improver is to enjoy the fruits of his labor, as is his right, others' rights to use the land must be violated by initiation of force. That violation of their rights must rightly be compensated.
    All life is risky.
    True: one is constantly at risk from natural hazards, just as one is at risk of initiation of force by wild animals, disease organisms, etc. It is risk imposed by other people that prudence requires society to manage.
    The fact of living creates some degree of risk for others.
    Aside from the risk to the mother inherent in childbirth, which she voluntarily assumes by engaging in sex, no, it does not. That is just another lie from you.
    Virtually any action we take puts some others into at least some tiny amount of danger, most of these dangers larger than that of burning alive from a cigarette butt,
    No, that's just a lie. And the risk of "burning alive" is only a small part of the risk the cigarette smoker imposes on others, as already proved.
    and we have already established that danger to be an initiation of force.
    It is imposition of a heightened danger of it.
    Ergo, all life should be taxed. We need a tax on life.
    I was confident that you would contrive a stupid lie to attribute to me. Thanks for not disappointing me.
    * (Or, OK, just to avoid the tiresome "I do not! Do not!! Do not!!!"s: all initiation of force should either be ended or taxed.
    If you knew your lie was going to be exposed and refuted, why did you even bother telling it?
    Presumably Roy L. would be OK with something like murder being actually abolished, rather than taxed, but most 'initiations of force', such as drinking hot coffee, riding a bicycle, or getting up in the morning, are just taxed under his system.
    No, that is just more stupid, dishonest garbage from you. Drinking hot coffee and getting up in the morning initiate no force and impose no risk on others. You know this. Of course you do. You merely decided that you had better deliberately lie about it. The risk cyclists pose to pedestrians is real, but depends entirely on where, when, and how they cycle, so it is more appropriately handled by regulation (rules of the road) than taxation. Some regulation has also been used to reduce the initiation of force on others by smokers and drinkers, but imposition of some risk to others is inherent in such behavior.

    Everything you say to try to rationalize privilege, justify injustice and excuse evil is just stupid, dishonest garbage.
    And even those things abolished would of course have some 'reasonable exceptions' for times when the government 'really needs to do it', like enslaving people to put out a fire in a forest it mismanaged,
    Oh, right, I forgot: there were never any fires in forests before government started "mismanaging" them....

    Like I said: just more of your stupid, dishonest garbage.
    or perhaps murdering people in order to promote freedom and democracy.)
    The number of people governments have murdered to promote freedom and democracy is a tiny fraction of the number landowners have murdered out of pure greed for unearned wealth.

  13. #672
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roy L View Post
    Without reading any further, I know this means that you will be making up false premises and falsely and dishonestly attributing them to me. I.e., you will be continuing your firmly established pattern of lying about what I have plainly written.
    Whee!

    Your evil and insane an-cap "philosophy" just says people should be free to drive drunk unless they "initiate force" by knocking down pedestrians. It's that simple.
    Yep.

    No, that's obviously just a bald lie about what I have plainly written.... That is just another lie from you.... No, that's just a lie.... I was confident that you would contrive a stupid lie to attribute to me. Thanks for not disappointing me.... If you knew your lie was going to be exposed and refuted, why did you even bother telling it?... No, that is just more stupid, dishonest garbage from you.... You merely decided that you had better deliberately lie about it.... Like I said: just more of your stupid, dishonest garbage. Everything you say...is just stupid, dishonest garbage.
    Pretty heavy stuff, Mr. L. I'm gonna have to refute you on all that. Are you ready? Here it is:

    Nu-uh!



    Drinking hot coffee and getting up in the morning initiate no force and impose no risk on others.
    Drinking hot coffee increases my risk that you will spill it on me. Also, that you will do something to injure me as a result of being on a psychoactive drug. Getting up in the morning increases my risk that you will discriminate against me, price-gouge me, drive a car past my house (dangerously close!), racially slur me, second-hand-smoke me while waiting in traffic, or fail to give me a share of the profits from your land. There's an almost unlimited number of ways that a man could initiate Roy-L.-badness upon me (I'm not going to call it force any more, because that's just butchering the English language), the risk of all of which are increased by that man getting up in the morning. If you get up in the morning and drink some hot coffee and smoke a cigarette, all in the same day, you are obviously one of the privileged class, mooching off the injustice and evil of a society which would permit you to commit such atrocities without the proper consequences. Outrageous, truly outrageous. The proper consequence, of course, is: give Joe Biden more money. That's usually a safe guess for the proper consequence for anything in a nation-state. That makes everything all better.

    So I guess we have a choice. Choice 1: we all get run over by drunk drivers and then, while lying in the streets, burned alive by cigarette butts and nationwide forest fires. That's what I want.

    Or, Choice #B: We give our money to Joe Biden, who saves us from evil, prudently manages our risks, and ends all the injustice of the world. This is what Roy L. wants.

    Well, to each his own!
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    Quote Originally Posted by helmuth_hubener View Post
    Yep.
    And to experiment with poison gas, biological warfare agents, etc. within city limits until such time as someone is actually harmed and can prove it in (a presumably privately owned and operated) court...?

    As I said: your an-cap "philosophy" is just evil and insane -- i.e., clinically sociopathic. And cretinous.
    Pretty heavy stuff, Mr. L. I'm gonna have to refute you on all that.
    No, of course you won't. You have yet to refute anything I have said, and you won't be starting now.
    Drinking hot coffee increases my risk that you will spill it on me.
    No, it doesn't, unless we are in the same place. So you lied. Again. And if we are in the same place, and I am there legitimately with my hot coffee, then you have already voluntarily accepted the risk that I might spill it on you, just by going to a place where people are allowed to drink hot coffee. Furthermore, if I do spill hot coffee on you and you suffer some harm, there are remedies available. The harm done by smokers is often not remediable in practice because it's either so large they can't afford to compensate it, or the culprits can't be identified, or the damage is too diffuse and indirect.
    Also, that you will do something to injure me as a result of being on a psychoactive drug.
    Wrong again. Coffee consumption is not associated with injury to others -- unlike alcohol and cigarette consumption -- so you are just lying. Again. Inevitably. In fact, coffee drinkers are more alert, and thus less likely to harm you through inattention.
    Getting up in the morning increases my risk that you will discriminate against me, price-gouge me, drive a car past my house (dangerously close!), racially slur me, second-hand-smoke me while waiting in traffic, or fail to give me a share of the profits from your land.
    <yawn> No, that's nothing but more stupid, dishonest garbage from you. As usual. Except for the second-hand smoke, those "risks" are not even examples of initiation of force or violation of rights (forcible deprivations of what you would otherwise have), so you are just makin' $#!+ up again.

    Oh, and you also tried to deceive your readers again about what LVT is. It is not "a share of the profits from land." It is the same whether there is any activity on the land or not, and thus any profits or not. So you just flat-out tried to DECEIVE people. Again. As usual.
    There's an almost unlimited number of ways that a man could initiate Roy-L.-badness upon me (I'm not going to call it force any more, because that's just butchering the English language),
    ROTFL!!! You are the one who just MADE UP all those examples of "Roy-L-badness," sunshine, and pretended that I would consider them risks of initiation of force or violation of rights. Not me. YOU. So YOU are the one who just BUTCHERED the English language as well as all standards of logic and honesty. Not me. YOU.
    the risk of all of which are increased by that man getting up in the morning.
    But which aren't the violation of rights or initiation of force we were talking about (except that you were only pretending to talk about them), nor heightened risk of same.
    If you get up in the morning and drink some hot coffee and smoke a cigarette, all in the same day, you are obviously one of the privileged class, mooching off the injustice and evil of a society which would permit you to commit such atrocities without the proper consequences. Outrageous, truly outrageous. The proper consequence, of course, is: give Joe Biden more money. That's usually a safe guess for the proper consequence for anything in a nation-state. That makes everything all better.
    That is just more stupid, dishonest garbage.
    So I guess we have a choice. Choice 1: we all get run over by drunk drivers and then, while lying in the streets, burned alive by cigarette butts and nationwide forest fires. That's what I want.
    Or something similarly sociopathic. Right.
    Or, Choice #B: We give our money to Joe Biden, who saves us from evil, prudently manages our risks, and ends all the injustice of the world. This is what Roy L. wants.
    No, that is just another stupid lie from you, as you know.

    Sorry, but prolonged exposure to evil makes me physically ill, so I might not be able to refute any more of your dishonest rationalizations of evil today.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Roy L View Post
    And if we are in the same place, and I am there legitimately with my hot coffee, then you have already voluntarily accepted the risk that I might spill it on you, just by going to a place where people are allowed to drink hot coffee.
    Uh oh, uh oh, we are getting dangerously close to a truth here. Voluntarily gone there? Voluntarily accepted a risk? Can that be done? Could one voluntarily live in a place with smoking and coffee-drinking and land-owning?

    I better turn off my brain before I think about that too hard. LVT Rules! LVT Solves Everything! LVT FTW!
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    Quote Originally Posted by helmuth_hubener View Post
    Uh oh, uh oh, we are getting dangerously close to a truth here.
    Time for you to steer us in the opposite direction, then.
    Voluntarily gone there? Voluntarily accepted a risk? Can that be done? Could one voluntarily live in a place with smoking and coffee-drinking and land-owning?
    Of course. Just as one could voluntarily live in a place with child prostitution, slavery, and extermination camps. The point, of course, which you are struggling desperately to divert your readers' attention from, is that drinking coffee does not even put anyone else at risk (you forgot to specify HOT coffee in a public place) of initiation of force, so there is no reason to concern ourselves with it as a potential initiation of force or violation of rights. Drinking hot coffee in a public place imposes a tiny risk on others, which we ignore because being, unlike you, rational and sensible beings, we understand that it does not add significantly to the risk inherent in being in a public place WITHOUT anyone drinking hot coffee. Smoking imposes a much larger risk of initiation of force, which we sensibly and prudently (i.e., we but not you) concern ourselves with, while landowning is not a mere risk but a massive and certain initiation of force and violation of rights that effectively enslaves the landless, as proved by their condition in every country with established private landowning where government does not make significant provision to rescue them from its devastatingly unjust and vicious effects.
    I better turn off my brain before I think about that too hard.
    You turned off your brain before you first responded in this thread, and you have not turned it on since.

  17. #676
    Member helmuth_hubener's Avatar
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    To review the situation:

    Libertarians believe in private property based on homesteading.

    Georgists believe that "the Universe belongs to all of us" (We are the world, we are the children...) and thus homesteading is invalid. Logically, this would mean that nothing can be rightfully privately owned, ever, since everything was at some point part of the Universe -- and still is! Homesteading is the only just way for pieces of the Universe to become private property. Toss that out, and you toss out private property.

    Our friend Mr. L. believes that quasi-private quasi-property should be continued despite his moral opposition to it. Individuals should continue being permitted to rob the masses of humanity of their birthright by wickedly monopolizing resources. Instead of individuals claiming property via homesteading, though, he thinks propertizing should occur by paying off a nation-state, either a one-time lump sum (for resources you're going to move) or an ongoing perpetual tax (for resources you're going to leave in-place). This is because the nation-state is good, the nation-state is holy, and thus has the right and the duty to rule over all the resources in its geographical monopoly -- in the name of the public good, of course. Well, credulity is nothing if not resilient.

    Public Choice economists might ask some difficult questions, like: if landowners inevitably get all the money and all the power, how is the solution to that to set up a massively powerful institution? Can we really realistically expect the rich and powerful to not utterly control the nation-state? Are we confused as to what it means to be rich and powerful? Is powerful really defined as powerless? Is the nation-state somehow magically going to be most gravely concerned about the interests of the landless beggar on the street while blithely dismissive of the interests of the land mogul who just spent a billion dollars sending a thousand lobbyists to the nation-state's political capital?

    Georgists also claim that taxing land value will force a landowner to be more efficient. By increasing his operating expenses, he is forced to make a higher profit just to break even. But, if true, could not that argument be used against any businessman? Does not taxing the factory owner X% force him to use that valuable resource in such a way to give at least a X% dividend to The Glorious Collective? Does not taxing even the factory worker by X% force him to use his body and mind -- also valuable social resources -- in a more productive manner, just to "break even" (feed himself)? All taxation is an incentive to efficiency, then, by this argument. It all cuts off the inefficient -- those unable to meet or exceed the minimum threshold set by the tax -- and gives their resources instead to those more enterprising and profitable souls able to survive and even thrive while carrying the weight of the nation-state.

    To summarize:
    No homesteading doesn't just mean no land ownership, it means no property ownership, period.
    Giving power to the nation-state to smash rich land-owners will backfire, as those rich land-owners can capture the apparatus meant to smash them with trivial ease.
    Taxing people to make them more efficient is like cutting off everyone's outer ears to force them to have better listening skills.
    Last edited by helmuth_hubener; 11-05-2011 at 07:29 PM.
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  18. #677

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    Quote Originally Posted by helmuth_hubener View Post
    To review the situation:
    I.e., baldly to lie about what I have plainly written:
    Libertarians believe in private property based on homesteading.
    I.e., "libertarians" are actually advocating feudalism, and the initiation of force to murder or enslave all who come after the initial grabbers of the resources nature provided. Helmuth has already explicitly admitted this, and has stated that landowners who murder and/or enslave anyone who attempts to exercise their natural liberty to use what nature provided should be regarded as heroes.

    But in fact, feudal "libertarians" like Helmuth do not even believe in private property based on homesteading at all, because they support initiation of force to secure and perpetuate current land titles, none of which can be traced in an unbroken line of consensual transactions to an initial "homesteader" who did not violate anyone else's rights by appropriating the land. It is too late for private property to be based on homesteading even if homesteading could produce a valid property right, which it cannot, and feudal "libertarians" are perfectly well aware of that fact. Their real agenda is to push for reversion to a feudal form of society in which all who are lazy and foolish enough to be born after the initial feeding frenzy of forcible appropriation are fair game to be murdered or enslaved by the landed aristocracy.
    Georgists believe that "the Universe belongs to all of us"
    No, that's just, inevitably, another stupid lie from you. The universe self-evidently and indisputably belongs to no one. It self-evidently and indisputably started out belonging to no one, and nothing has happened in the interim that could possibly have made it belong to anyone, or to everyone. It is also self-evident and indisputable that appropriation of any portion of it as private property, by "homesteading" or any other method, purposes to initiate force against anyone who would exercise their natural liberty to use it.
    (We are the world, we are the children...)
    Beneath contempt.
    and thus homesteading is invalid.
    No, homesteading is invalid because it is an undertaking to initiate force against others who attempt to exercise their rights to liberty. No silly songs are involved. No assumptions of collective property in the universe are involved. Those are just fabrications -- i.e., flat-out lies -- on your part. It is just a fact of objective physical reality that people are at liberty to use what nature provided, and that initiation of force to stop them from doing so, as appropriation of land through "homesteading" purposes to do, deprives them of their natural liberty, violating their rights. The evasion of that fact is the goal of all your stupid lies.
    Logically, this would mean that nothing can be rightfully privately owned, ever, since everything was at some point part of the Universe -- and still is!
    Maybe if your strawman had any meaning, which it doesn't, and if anyone but you was assuming it as a premise, which they aren't.
    Homesteading is the only just way for pieces of the Universe to become private property.
    No, that's just indisputably false. The only just way for pieces of the universe to become private property is self-evidently through a process that does not violate anyone's rights without providing just compensation. I.e., through production, never appropriation through initiation of force. It is also indisputable that private property in products of labor was an established and recognized institution for many thousands of years before appropriation of land as property through homesteading was ever conceived.
    Toss that out, and you toss out private property.
    No, that's just indisputably false, as proved above. Private property in products of labor does not violate anyone's rights to liberty, because they would not otherwise have been at liberty to use it: it did not exist without the producer producing it. Private property in what nature provided (i.e., land), by contrast, DOES inherently violate others' rights to liberty, because they WOULD otherwise be at liberty to use it: it DID exist without the "owner" producing it, or indeed doing anything at all, including existing, and they would be at liberty to use it if the "owner" did not presume to violate their rights to liberty by initiating force against them.

    Helmuth will say and believe ANYTHING WHATEVER in order to avoid knowing that self-evident and indisputable fact of objective physical reality.
    Our friend Mr. L. believes that quasi-private quasi-property should be continued despite his moral opposition to it.
    Another bald lie about what I have plainly written. Inevitably. I have repeatedly identified the fact that rightful property is founded on an act of production, never on forcible appropriation, because only thus can property rights not violate others' rights.
    Individuals should continue being permitted to rob the masses of humanity of their birthright by wickedly monopolizing resources.
    Monopolization of resources is going to happen anyway. It is inherent in people's exercise of their right to liberty to use resources, and becomes a significant issue once fixed improvements to land are a significant factor in the economy. Whether it is wicked robbery or not depends entirely on whether it is justly compensated or not. You oppose just compensation because you favor an unjust and evil natural resource allocation system that is wicked robbery. I, by contrast, advocate just compensation because I favor a natural resource allocation system that secures natural justice and the equal human rights to life, liberty and property in the products of one's labor.
    Instead of individuals claiming property via homesteading,
    I.e., initiating force against others to steal natural resources from all who would otherwise be at liberty to use them...
    though, he thinks propertizing should occur by paying off a nation-state, either a one-time lump sum (for resources you're going to move) or an ongoing perpetual tax (for resources you're going to leave in-place).
    No, that's just another stupid lie from you about what I have plainly written. The just compensation to those whose rights you violate by extinguishing or temporarily occupying a natural opportunity does not create any property right in that opportunity. It merely ensures that your property in what you produce by extinguishing or occupying that opportunity is just. Furthermore, nation states are just the currently dominant model for securing individual rights against initiation of force by feudal warlords (i.e., landowners) who seek to murder and enslave others by forcibly depriving them of their liberty rights to use what nature provided for all. I would have no objection to any other effective model for securing the equal individual rights of all and administering the just and rightful compensation due to those whose rights landholders violate by initiating force against them.
    This is because the nation-state is good, the nation-state is holy, and thus has the right and the duty to rule over all the resources in its geographical monopoly -- in the name of the public good, of course. Well, credulity is nothing if not resilient.
    You are just spewing silly "meeza hatesa gubmint!" garbage again. The nation state simply works. There is nothing credulous about the observation that the nation state has proved more successful than any other model in securing people's individual rights and administering possession and use of natural resources in the public interest. Certainly the feudalism you advocate never did.
    Public Choice economists might ask some difficult questions,
    Would they be willing to listen to clear and irrefutable answers?
    like: if landowners inevitably get all the money and all the power, how is the solution to that to set up a massively powerful institution?
    Landowners only inevitably get all the money and all the power in the absence of a countervailing institution massive and powerful enough to secure the people's rights against initiation of force by landowners intent on murdering or enslaving anyone who tries to exercise their rights to liberty.
    Can we really realistically expect the rich and powerful to not utterly control the nation-state?
    In a just nation state that did not initiate force to implement a policy of massive welfare subsidy giveaways to greedy, privileged parasites like landowners, the rich and powerful might get that way through productive contribution, personal merit, and a record of public service.
    Are we confused as to what it means to be rich and powerful?
    You probably are, as you are evidently operating on the assumption that because landowners get rich and powerful through unjust privilege, and despite not contributing anything, that's the only way anyone can get rich and powerful.
    Is powerful really defined as powerless?
    Probably by you.
    Is the nation-state somehow magically going to be most gravely concerned about the interests of the landless beggar on the street while blithely dismissive of the interests of the land mogul who just spent a billion dollars sending a thousand lobbyists to the nation-state's political capital?
    In a just nation state, land moguls don't have that kind of money, because only the productive do.
    Georgists also claim that taxing land value will force a landowner to be more efficient.
    Lie. It doesn't force anyone to do anything, other than to relinquish land they refuse justly to compensate others for forcibly depriving them of. It just encourages the unproductive and inefficient landholder to yield the land to someone productive and efficient enough to pay the tax.
    By increasing his operating expenses, he is forced to make a higher profit just to break even.
    Nope. That's just another flat-out lie. First, the landowner qua landowner just owns the land. He doesn't have any "operating expenses." He just pockets the rent in return for doing nothing. Secondly, the land tax is exactly the same whether there is any operation or not, so it is indisputably not an operating expense. And thirdly, the land tax is no more than the high bidder is paying the private landowner for use of the land anyway, so there is no increase in the user's operating expenses whatsoever. The land rent just goes to the government and community that make the land valuable, rather than to the landowner who does not.
    But, if true, could not that argument be used against any businessman?
    It's not true. It's absurd, fallacious and dishonest anti-economic nonsense.
    Does not taxing the factory owner X% force him to use that valuable resource in such a way to give at least a X% dividend to The Glorious Collective?
    Nope. Wrong AGAIN. The land is already there, with no help from the landowner or anyone else. Even deliberately destroying its productive potential to reduce the tax gets the landowner nowhere (even assuming he could dodge the resulting severance tax), as he must still pay for depriving others of the land's diminished potential, and no longer has its original potential to utilize.

    The factory, by contrast, is not already there. It must be provided by an investor, who will simply choose not to provide it (or if it is already there, to abandon or destroy it) if it is to be taxed more than he is willing or able to pay. The landowner by contrast cannot choose not to provide the land, because he doesn't provide it anyway. Its supply is fixed. All he can choose to do is use the land productively enough to pay the tax, yield it to someone who will, or lose money.
    Does not taxing even the factory worker by X% force him to use his body and mind -- also valuable social resources --
    A person's body and mind are not "social resources" because they are inherently not something anyone else could possibly use. By contrast, land IS something that others would otherwise be perfectly at liberty to use. You know this. Of course you do. You merely decided deliberately to lie about it.
    in a more productive manner, just to "break even" (feed himself)?
    It is true that people tend to be much more attached to their lives, health and comfort than investors are to factories (i.e., the supply of people is very inelastic), so taxing them according to an estimate of their productive potential could make them work harder -- but would more likely make them try to hide their productive potential. Land, by contrast, can't hide, and its productive potential is publicly observable.
    All taxation is an incentive to efficiency, then, by this argument.
    I.e., by your absurd, fallacious, dishonest and brain-dead anti-economic "argument."
    It all cuts off the inefficient -- those unable to meet or exceed the minimum threshold set by the tax --
    Land rent is set by the market, stop lying. It's exactly the same amount the user would pay a private landowner, stop lying. The universal individual land tax exemption restores the right to liberty the landowner violates, stop lying.
    and gives their resources
    "Their" resources?? That is a blatant question begging fallacy.
    instead to those more enterprising and profitable souls able to survive and even thrive while carrying the weight of the nation-state.
    No, that's just another stupid lie from you. All land rent that is not recovered by the community for public purposes and benefit is pocketed by the landowner for himself, and it is thus the weight of the parasitic landowner that the productive are forced to carry, not the weight of the nation state. The services and infrastructure that the nation state provides, by contrast, are not a weight to carry. They are what give the land the economic advantage that makes it worth paying rent for, that help the land user carry the weight of his labor and capital investments. Land rent is a voluntary, market-based, user-pay transaction. The only difference with land value taxation is that the exact same amount is paid to the community that creates the land's value, rather than being given away to greedy, idle landowners in return for nothing.

    I have explained this to you before. Under the current system, as well as any feudal system such as you advocate, the productive must pay taxes to government (or private an-cap protection rackets) to fund services and infrastructure, and must then pay land rent to landowners for access to the same services and infrastructure their taxes just paid for. The productive must pay for government TWICE so that landowners can pocket one of the payments in return for nothing. Under land value taxation, by contrast, the producer just pays government directly for access to services and infrastructure, cutting out the something-for-nothing payment to the landowner. LVT cuts the weight of government in half -- the exact opposite of your false, stupid and dishonest claim.
    To summarize:
    No homesteading doesn't just mean no land ownership, it means no property ownership, period.
    Demolished above. It does not matter how many times you repeat that stupid and dishonest claim. Hong Kong proves you wrong.
    Giving power to the nation-state to smash rich land-owners
    The nation state already has that power. It just uses it to subsidize rich landowners at the expense of the productive.
    will backfire, as those rich land-owners can capture the apparatus meant to smash them with trivial ease.
    Wrong. They won't be rich any more. If rich landowners could capture the apparatus of the nation state with trivial ease, how did Mao manage to exterminate millions of them?
    Taxing people to make them more efficient is like cutting off everyone's outer ears to force them to have better listening skills.
    Garbage. The people are ALREADY being taxed, by landowners. LVT adds NOTHING to what the productive pay for land. It just relieves them of the burden of paying for government twice so that landowners can pocket one of the payments in return for nothing.

    Readers are invited to verify for themselves that all Helmuth's "arguments" have been refuted, most of them proved absurd and dishonest as well as fallacious, and all his substantive claims about LVT proved to be fabrications.

  19. #678

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    Tax = Theft. If you take what is not yours its stealing. So, why would you think its ok for the Government to do it?

  20. #679

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    Quote Originally Posted by whippoorwill View Post
    Tax = Theft.
    Not if it is a tax that recovers publicly created value for public purposes and benefit, it isn't. And that is exactly what land value taxation does.
    If you take what is not yours its stealing.
    It is landowners who have taken and continue to take what is not rightfully theirs. Read the thread. This fact has been proved over and over again. Land value is CREATED BY government and the community, and therefore rightly BELONGS TO government and the community. The landowner, OTOH, is just a thief:

    The Bandit

    Suppose there is a bandit who lurks in the mountain pass between two countries. He robs the merchant caravans as they pass through, but is careful to take only as much as the merchants can afford to lose, so that they will keep using the pass and he will keep getting the loot.

    A thief, right?

    Now, suppose he has a license to charge tolls of those who use the pass, a license issued by the government of one of the countries -- or even both of them. The tolls are by coincidence equal to what he formerly took by force. How has the nature of his enterprise changed, simply through being made legal? He is still just a thief. He is still just demanding payment and not contributing anything in return. How can the mere existence of that piece of paper entitling him to rob the caravans alter the fact that what he is doing is in fact robbing them?

    But now suppose instead of a license to steal, he has a land title to the pass. He now charges the caravans the exact same amount in "rent" for using the pass, and has become quite a respectable gentleman. But how has the nature of his business really changed? It's all legal now, but he is still just taking money from those who use what nature provided for free, and contributing nothing whatever in return, just as he did when he was a lowly bandit. How is he any different now that he is a landowner?

    And come to that, how is any other landowner charging rent for what nature provided for free any different?

    So, why would you think its ok for the Government to do it?
    Government's job is to secure and reconcile the equal individual rights of all to life, liberty, and property in the fruits of their labor. It is impossible for government to do that unless it requires just compensation for the violation of individual rights inherent in private ownership of land.

  21. #680

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    Quote Originally Posted by whippoorwill View Post
    Tax = Theft. If you take what is not yours its stealing. So, why would you think its ok for the Government to do it?
    In Roy L's imaginary utopian world, theft is not theft if the government does it.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ron Paul
    The government is incapable of doing what it's supposed to do. A job like the provision of security is something best left to private institutions.
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  22. #681

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    Quote Originally Posted by heavenlyboy34 View Post
    In Roy L's imaginary utopian world, theft is not theft if the government does it.
    Inevitably, you decided deliberately to lie about what I have plainly written.

    All apologists for landowner privilege lie. That is a natural law of the universe. There has never been an exception to that law, and there never will be.

  23. #682

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    It seems Helmuth, having been utterly demolished and humiliated dozens of times, has decided to let prudence get the better part of valor and abandon the field. Is there no one else?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RZvIoM4oLp0

  24. #683
    Member helmuth_hubener's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roy L View Post
    I.e., "libertarians" are actually advocating feudalism
    You know, you throw this word "feudalism" around as a swear word, in much the same way as people in the mainstream generally use the word "fascism". It appears to be a device wherein, like any swear word, you give yourself permission to simply turn off your brain and express your visceral hatred of whatever you're swearing at. Let's look at feudalism as a real thing, and not merely a swear word. Was it a bad system? It was, of course, the system under which the European Miracle arose -- the first time in history wherein men achieved sustained per-capita economic growth over a long period of time. That had never happened before, at least we have no clear record of it ever having happened. In all of recorded history, the bulk of humanity had struggled along at a baseline level remaining roughly the same century to century, millennium to millennium; a level not much above subsistence. Then, Western Christendom in the middle ages burst on the scene with its unique feudal system. It was a decentralized system -- unlike the Russian feudalism where the czar picked the lords, the lords in the West were an independent class and thus played a countervailing role against the power of whatever prince, duke, king, or other ruler was over them. This created a system of real "checks and balances" -- as opposed to the phony ones which some laughably pretend exist between the branches of the current U.S.A. central government. The strong institutional church provided yet another check and balance on the power of the princes -- the Pope had an incentive to make sure the prince did not raise taxes too high, since this would harm his own ability to collect offerings, so, the Pope required the princes to ask for his permission before raising taxes. This feudal system allowed liberty to flourish as never before, and because of that a prosperity arose and flourished such as had never existed before on the face of the Earth.

    So give feudalism some respect. It made the modern world. It's not a perfect system, but without it we'd be digging in the dirt, barely eking out enough to eat, just as the man in 500 A.D. was doing, just as the man in 1000 B.C. was doing, just as the man in 5000 B.C. was doing, and just as the man in 5000 A.D. would still be doing. Political hegemony is a stable system -- it can (and did) go on indefinitely, for millennia. But western-style feudalism, and its explosively successful -- unprecedented! -- wealth generation, turned the world upside-down and made it what it is today.

    http://mises.org/media/1263/The-European-Miracle

    , and the initiation of force to murder or enslave all who come after the initial grabbers of the resources nature provided.
    If there is no one present to initiate force against, they cannot be initiating force. If a man claims a location, and no one is yet present in that location -- and that is what homesteading means -- then he absolutely cannot be initiating force against anyone when he makes that claim. There's no one there! He cannot be molesting anyone, for there is no one around to molest.

    I think that you would, of necessity, to remain a rational being, agree with the above. Where you say the "initiation" of force comes in is when, years later, more people come to the area and this conversation ensues:

    "Hey, it's getting crowded, it's not fair you own that large location just because you got there first, we want to take it from you. Nature gave it to us, as well as you, after all."

    "I claimed this location as my own. No one objected to my claim. I consider it legitimate. I have made many improvements to the original state of nature at this location -- improvements which would be very difficult or impossible to relocate to a different location. Please, respect my property as I respect yours."

    "Ha! Meet my gun barrel, you puke-faced slaver. We won't stand for your feudalistic lies."

    The homesteader, by taking exception to the mob's claim on that location, is thus, Mr. L. claims, initiating, or starting, an act of force against the mob. One wonders if the definitions of defense and aggression have gotten a little tangled. The homesteader didn't start anything. It is logically impossible to pretzel any way in which he could be said to have "initiated" the force. The homesteader was already there. The homesteader just wants to defend what he sees as his property. No one else has any claim on it, even under Mr. L.'s philofolly, since he has now stated he does not hold that the Universe is owned by everyone, but rather by no one. That means that instead of everyone having a claim to the Universe, as I had incorrectly assumed he believed, no one has any claim whatsoever. Thus, no one in the mob has any legal or moral standing to challenge the homesteader.

    Helmuth has already explicitly admitted this, and has stated that landowners who murder and/or enslave anyone who attempts to exercise their natural liberty to use what nature provided should be regarded as heroes.
    Defensive killing is not murder, and building a fence (or otherwise excluding vagrants from your backyard) bears no resemblance to slavery. You're off in La-La Land, no offense! You're doing intellectual somersaults all in the service of the entitlement complex. Seriously: all of this is just an elaborate justification for the entitlement complex. A vagrant wanders by my house and says to himself "It ain't right that he got that land while I got nothin'. I've got as much right to that land as him, haven't I? I oughta have a fair share of that land." I shake my head and say: "No sir, I'm sorry: it is, you don't, and you oughtn't.". Mr. L., though, his eyes light up and he gets very excited and tells the vagrant: "Yes! Yes! You've jolly well got it! You're absolutely right; you are actually being actively robbed in a very real sense by not getting a fair share of that land. Let me invite you to dinner and I'll explain further, and together, comrade, we can launch a glorious Georgist Revolution."

    But in fact, feudal "libertarians" like Helmuth...
    Feudal! Evil! If I swear at Helmuth enough, it will make his wrongness clear to everyone!

    do not even believe in private property based on homesteading at all, because they support initiation of force to secure and perpetuate current land titles, none of which can be traced in an unbroken line of consensual transactions to an initial "homesteader" who did not violate anyone else's rights by appropriating the land.
    To the contrary: we believe only in just titles, based on homesteading. If a title can be shown to be illegitimate, based on initial aggression, then it should be declared invalid and the victims or their heirs regain their rightful property which was stolen from them. Aboriginal peoples robbed of their land through broken treaties, for instance, would have standing to bring claim against the holders of the robbed land. Descendants of slaves would have partial claim to the plantations of the slaveholders, for another instance.

    It is too late for private property to be based on homesteading even if homesteading could produce a valid property right, which it cannot, and feudal "libertarians" are perfectly well aware of that fact.
    I am not aware of it. It seems not too late at all. The vast majority of the Universe remains unclaimed and open for homesteading. Even the majority of the locations of Earth (including oceans, Antarctica, northern Canada, many other currently-desolate places, aerial and underground locations, etc., etc.) are still available for homesteading, once a libertarian framework makes such homesteading possible.

    Their real agenda is to push for reversion to a feudal form of society in which all who are lazy and foolish enough to be born after the initial feeding frenzy of forcible appropriation are fair game to be murdered or enslaved by the landed aristocracy.
    Wow, Georgism really is still rooted in the world of 18th and 19th century England. Yes, England had primogeniture laws prohibiting the sale or division of the estates of the landed aristocracy. There, the land-owners really were like barons ruling over the serfs who were legally prevented from owning their own land. That system broke in the American colonies, smashed against the reality of vast, open territory stretching endlessly to the west. America does not have any landed aristocracy. Families get land, families lose land, everything is ever and always in flux and everyone has a free and equal opportunity to buy their own land. Ted Turner famously owns vast tracts of land in America. John C. Malone, who no one's even heard of, owns even more. Who here thinks that 50 years from now the grandsons of Turner or Malone will still be the largest landowners in America? I sure don't. Fortunes come and fortunes go -- that's the great thing about America. Freedom is a meritocracy. Shirttails to shirttails in 3 generations. There is no reason to fear this boogeyman of a big, scary, monolithic "landed aristocracy" in America. There is no such thing, and there is reason to believe there never will be any such thing. There is no primogeniture in America.

    The universe self-evidently and indisputably belongs to no one.
    Right, O.K., no one then. No one has any claim upon any of the resources of the Universe whatsoever. Got it.
    It self-evidently and indisputably started out belonging to no one, and nothing has happened in the interim that could possibly have made it belong to anyone, or to everyone.
    Well, other than homesteading. That's a pretty good way of getting part of it to belong to you. But OK, according to your misosophy, no one owns, ever owns, nor can ever own, any part of the Universe. It was created unowned, it is still unowned, and it will remain unowned forever and ever. Amen. Got it.

    It is also self-evident and indisputable that appropriation of any portion of it as private property, by "homesteading" or any other method, purposes to initiate force against anyone who would exercise their natural liberty to use it.
    Natural liberty to use it? In other words: a right to use it? A just claim upon the resources of the Universe? No, I'm sorry, no one has that. Any such claim is merely nonsense. The Universe belongs to no one, not everyone, remember? No one has any right to use any portion of the Universe. It doesn't "belong" to them, you inform us. They have no "claim" on it, you educate us. They cannot justly "own" it, you enlighten us. Now you want to tell us they have a "natural liberty" to it? Sorry, that's a contradiction. Either mob-member X can claim the bounty of the Universe or he can't. You have told us that he can't. So he has no grievance with any person or factor preventing him from making that bogus claim.

    You see how the Universe belonging to no one prevents your defense of the entitlement mentality. If the Universe doesn't belong to the vagrant, he really has no entitlement to use it.

    (We are the world, we are the children...)
    Beneath contempt.
    You're so hi-ey-i-yigh, high above me, you're so lovely...

    No, homesteading is invalid because it is an undertaking to initiate force against others who attempt to exercise their rights to liberty.
    Right to what? Liberty to what? To use portions of the Universe? But they have no such right nor liberty. You said.

    No silly songs are involved.
    That's too bad. :^(

    No assumptions of collective property in the universe are involved. Those are just fabrications -- i.e., flat-out lies -- on your part. It is just a fact of objective physical reality that people are at liberty to use what nature provided, and that initiation of force to stop them from doing so, as appropriation of land through "homesteading" purposes to do, deprives them of their natural liberty, violating their rights. The evasion of that fact is the goal of all your stupid lies.
    Well now wait, if all peoples of the world have a right to use the Universe, what does that "use" involve? Does it involve making decisions about it? Yes. Does it involve exercising exclusivity over it (only one person can drink that cup of water)? Yes. This is sounding suspiciously like ownership. In fact, it is ownership. If you use a gallon of water to put in your stomach, you have claimed ownership over that gallon of water. No one else can use it now. They may have had every right to use it, but they didn't. You didn't let them. You took it. Now what? Who is in the right? Mr. L.'s misosophy has no coherent answer.

    Other than, to be consistent with his answer to the problem of a man who claims a location, he would say that the mob ought to punch him in the gut until he vomits up the water for them to all get their "fair share".

    Maybe if your strawman had any meaning, which it doesn't, and if anyone but you was assuming it as a premise, which they aren't.
    Not a strawman, I figured you thought the Universe was owned by everyone, since this is what it means for everyone to have a just claim on the use of the Universe. Instead, you think no one has such a claim. Yet you also think everyone has such a claim. Yet you most emphatically hold that no one has such a claim, and are outraged I would think otherwise. Yet you most definitely propound the self-evident truth that everyone has such a claim, and roil in fury that I might disagree.

    In short: blank-out.


    No, that's just indisputably false.
    How come it keeps getting disputed?

    The only just way for pieces of the universe to become private property is self-evidently through a process that does not violate anyone's rights without providing just compensation. I.e., through production, never appropriation through initiation of force.
    Here we come to the only interesting part of your post, on which I wanted to pontificate and elaborate (very briefly). The rest, I just figured I'd reply line-by-line like you always do, just to be different. I am at a disadvantage, of course, because I am concerned about quality and so I do things such as actually read the entire post before responding, which it is as clear as day that you do not do, and then actually think about it, and then attempt substantive communication. As you typed your "replies" to all my lines above, you had no idea how this post would end. And to your style of "argumentation", it's irrelevant. Completely and totally irrelevant. It will just be another horrific lie, no doubt. Big pictures are irrelevant. Small pictures too, for that matter. All that's relevant is that every single sentence I type is a lie, and your job is merely to tag and identify them as such. This style of pure rhetorical debate lets you produce massively voluminous quantities of text extremely rapidly, since you don't have to craft any kind of overall structure or argumentative logic into your posts.

    Anyway, on this matter of production bestowing just ownership: what is production? Production is mere transformation, taking matter, space, and perhaps other abstractions, and forming them into something different and presumably more to your liking. When one produces a chainsaw, he transforms ores, oils, and fibers, into this finely-tuned tree-massacre machine. So how is it different to take and transform an empty prairie into a parking lot? One takes a location, transforms the matter there to be more smoothly perpendicular to the direction of gravitation, tamps it down to make it harder and better able to support weight, and perhaps adds in matter from other locations to create phenomenon like pavement, paint, and lighting. Both the chainsaw and the parking lot are produced from the raw resources of the Universe. Those raw resources have been transformed into something greater, or at least different, than their original form. The chainsaw, you say, has been produced, while the land on which the parking lot sits has not. But Mr. L.: it has! That land has been transformed, just as assuredly as the raw resources in the chainsaw. If one can appropriate for one's self some pieces of the raw Universe by building a chainsaw with them, one can just as justly appropriate some pieces of it by building a parking lot with them. The raw ores were there all along. The surface of the Earth was there all along. Fine. But you changed it. You produced something with it. Matter is matter. Location is location. If you accept that the chainsaw owner can have absolute ownership over the matter composing the chainsaw, and the three-dimensional space which it monopolizes, you should at least be able to understand why I think it possible for the parking lot owner to have absolute ownership over the matter composing the parking lot and the location which it occupies.
    Last edited by helmuth_hubener; 11-12-2011 at 09:56 AM.
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    I remembered one other thing I wanted to respond to: the land already being there, while the factory, allegedly, isn't.

    But it is. It's already there. It's already been built. The factory's existence is a fact of life. It's a done deal. The same efficiency argument applies to it as to the land: it's there anyway, so let's tax whoever owns it to force them into increased efficiency. Taxing the factory doesn't make the factory disappear, any more than taxing land makes it disappear. It just gets run more efficiently. In fact, remember, if the factory were to be abandoned, it eventually would become philosophically land. In Will Smith's "I Am Legend" New York, (leaving aside the property rights of the zombies) all the skyscrapers, the cars, the gasoline, the canned food... these are all "land" for him. They are all just provided to him by nature as far as from an ethical or economic point of view. So why wait for it to be abandoned? Tax it now!

    Now taxing factory owners does provide a disincentive going forward to build *more* factories, but so does taxing the Universe provide a disincentive going forward to open up more parts and resources of the Universe to productive use. And while land and factories may be metaphysically unable to disappear, yet you tax them too much and even the existing land and factories will be abandoned, and crumble or go fallow. They will cease to exist in the economy. This goes back to what I keep saying: the amount of land in the economy can increase or decrease, and does all the time. It's not fixed at all!
    Last edited by helmuth_hubener; 11-13-2011 at 06:29 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by helmuth_hubener View Post
    The factory's existence is a fact of life. It's a done deal. The same efficiency argument applies to it as to the land: it's there anyway, so let's tax whoever owns it to force them into increased efficiency. Taxing the factory doesn't make the factory disappear, any more than taxing land makes it disappear. It just gets run more efficiently.
    I think this is apples and oranges. Taxing the factory might make it disappear...move to China maybe. Hasn't this happened, a lot actually? More important, an LVT does in fact efficiently order and regulate factories. Consider this example. There is assessed a 20% LVT on all land. Land rich in coal or minerals has a higher value than desert land. This is because coal and mineral rich land contains the resources by which man builds factories. So right off the bat we know that the rights to some land is more expensive than for others, because of the underlying demand for the resources, and this is reflected in market prices of the land. Secondly, some factories are more valuable than others. This value of various planned factories then drives entrepreneurs planning them to compete with each other for the rights to the resources to build their factories. Once these hypothetical factories are built and running, it is competition in the marketplace for the operating factors of production, again resources like ore and minerals, etc., that will in part determine ongoing profitability, and that cost is driven by the overall market demand for those resources, which, needless to say, is ultimately imputed to land values. So it turns out not only does LVT efficiently allocate resources to which factories get built, it also allocates resources efficiently to those which wish to remain in operation. A capital tax thus is needless and becomes a double tax in fact.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MattButler View Post
    I think this is apples and oranges. Taxing the factory might make it disappear...move to China maybe. Hasn't this happened, a lot actually? More important, an LVT does in fact efficiently order and regulate factories. Consider this example. There is assessed a 20% LVT on all land. Land rich in coal or minerals has a higher value than desert land. This is because coal and mineral rich land contains the resources by which man builds factories. So right off the bat we know that the rights to some land is more expensive than for others, because of the underlying demand for the resources, and this is reflected in market prices of the land. Secondly, some factories are more valuable than others. This value of various planned factories then drives entrepreneurs planning them to compete with each other for the rights to the resources to build their factories. Once these hypothetical factories are built and running, it is competition in the marketplace for the operating factors of production, again resources like ore and minerals, etc., that will in part determine ongoing profitability, and that cost is driven by the overall market demand for those resources, which, needless to say, is ultimately imputed to land values. So it turns out not only does LVT efficiently allocate resources to which factories get built, it also allocates resources efficiently to those which wish to remain in operation. A capital tax thus is needless and becomes a double tax in fact.
    Let me first translate for all the thread's loyal readers what I see to be your point: Factories actually are taxed with an LVT. Both the resources used to build and also to maintain and operate them -- concrete and metal and whatever -- are taxed, back when they're in the ground.

    That's the big point, and then the grand finale is: "So it turns out not only does LVT efficiently allocate resources to which factories get built, it also allocates resources efficiently to those which wish to remain in operation." Umm, no, let's be precise: it turns out that an LVT taxes resources. Well bully for the LVT. That's not a great selling point for me. It's not that hard to set up a system that taxes raw materials -- you just start stealing from people based on their ownership of raw materials. Most saliently: it remains utterly beyond me why one would equate being taxed with being efficiently allocated. Thing X is taxed... that means Thing X is efficiently allocated? What? Because you taxed it? It's just totally ludicris.

    The only reason why you think you can get away with it, why you think you can lay a burden on landowners without getting any blowback, that sole reason comes to one word: Fixed. You think you've got them under your thumb. You think there's nothing landowners can do about the tax. There's this fixed quantity of land, and it can never ever desert you, and so even if one landowner says "rats to you" and quits, another one inevitably will come to take his place. Because the supply of resources is fixed. Someone's going to own all of it; if not one guy, then another. 'Cause it's fixed. "By Definition"!!! And that's that.

    The point of my last post is that it's not fixed.

    The factory's not fixed. Just as you said, if you tax it bad enough, it will be abandoned. The whole factory building could even be hauled away, I suppose, to greener pastures in non-taxing jurisdictions.

    The land's not fixed either. Set your LVT high enough, and no landowner will be able to make a profit on it. The land will be abandoned. Top soil could even be scraped off and hauled away, I suppose, though this is even more unlikely and unfeasible with land than with the factory. In any case, even though it's more difficult for land to be transported, it's not impossible at all for it to disappear... from the economy.

    Taxation is a parasitic activity. You understand this, I think, when it comes to everything but land. Tax factories, or income, or whatever, and you're sucking blood out of your host. Do it overmuch and you'll end up with an empty ruined shell. Do it even a little and you're still sucking the health and vitality out of your host. Making the economy that much worse. What I'm trying to explain is that it's the same for land. Land is not a magic special category. The same principle is at work. Tax natural resources enough and eventually no one will be able use them profitably. You'll have fallow fields, ignored oil deposits, and unfished oceans as far as the eye can see. Tax them even a little and you're still draining that much life out of the economy, and that much life, satisfaction, and enjoyment out of the lives of the the individuals who would have otherwise benefited from the money going now instead to the political class.

    Land is not fixed. Land can be taxed out of economic existence, just like a factory can be.

    So then, you may say, the task of the LVT planner is merely to determine the right amount of tax wherein you take all the landowner's "excess profits" -- for Roy L., 100%; for you, 100% minus the average rate of return. Good luck with that. Omniwise bureaucracies have always proven so easy to create. At least you realize that if there's no rate of return then no one will invest their money in landowning. So you understand that that is too high. But even 90% minus avg. rate of return will remove lots of marginal resources from play. And even 10% or 1% is still draining the economy and distorting the market, and thus hurting people.

    There's just no LVT that in any way increases efficiency. A 1% income tax wreaks havok on an economy. A 1% LVT wreaks havok on the economy. There's no end to the distortions, unintended consequences, blowback, lost productivity, and wasted wealth caused by either one.
    Last edited by helmuth_hubener; 11-13-2011 at 11:48 PM.
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    Well, well, I see Helmuth has returned for another discipline session. Time to bend him over and humiliate him again, as he obviously loves it...
    Quote Originally Posted by helmuth_hubener View Post
    You know, you throw this word "feudalism" around as a swear word, in much the same way as people in the mainstream generally use the word "fascism".
    No, I am using it in its exact economic and historical meaning: an agrarian economy characterized by weak or absent government and allocation of possession and use of land by hereditary contracts of personal service and fealty of the land user to the landowner. It is quite common for feudal libertarians to try to claim various virtues for feudalism, as they know that is what they actually advocate. All such claims are of course false, absurd, ahistorical and dishonest.
    It appears to be a device wherein, like any swear word, you give yourself permission to simply turn off your brain and express your visceral hatred of whatever you're swearing at.
    <yawn>
    Let's look at feudalism as a real thing, and not merely a swear word.
    Without reading any further, I know that you will be lying about what feudalism is as a real thing.
    Was it a bad system? It was, of course, the system under which the European Miracle arose -- the first time in history wherein men achieved sustained per-capita economic growth over a long period of time.
    No, of course it wasn't. That's just another stupid lie from you. Feudalism was the system under which Europe stagnated economically (and in pretty much every other way) for nearly a thousand years, the system under which even kings were poor. Its record elsewhere -- India, China, Japan, Russia, Latin America, etc. -- was no better.
    That had never happened before, at least we have no clear record of it ever having happened.
    Bull$#!+. It indisputably happened in ancient Egypt, Athens and Rome (all of which recovered substantial publicly created land rents for public purposes and benefit), as well as in ancient China (where farmland was periodically redistributed to give everyone more equal opportunity to use it) and Heian-era Japan.
    In all of recorded history, the bulk of humanity had struggled along at a baseline level remaining roughly the same century to century, millennium to millennium; a level not much above subsistence.
    But that first changed not under feudalism, but under governments that recovered substantial publicly created land rent for public benefit and/or ensured rough equality of opportunity to use the good land -- Confucius eulogized such arrangements as characterizing the Golden Age of Chinese prosperity and equality -- but returns to feudalism consequent on growing landowner privilege returned those societies to bare subsistence economies ruled by landowner greed. Historians and archaeologists have proved this fact in many ways, such as by comparing potsherds from different eras. Roman pottery was of high quality and is very abundant in Roman archaeological sites; such quantities could only have been produced for mass use by quite affluent populations. By contrast, potsherds from post-Roman feudal-era sites are few and of low quality, showing the population was much poorer than in Roman times. The same is true of the quality and quantity of all manner of goods that have survived at such sites.

    Ancient Rome produced enormous amounts of exquisite marble statuary, much of it copies of Greek originals. In feudal times, that marble statuary was BURNED to produce cement to build fortifications and cathedrals. The fact that it was considered more economical to burn marble statues than to mine limestone for cement is eloquent proof of the stagnant, poverty-stricken and totally de-industrialized feudal economy of post-Roman Western Europe. In fact, the transition from Western Roman government to feudalism in the fifth and sixth centuries caused such extreme economic disintegration and impoverishment that it was accompanied by a population decline of about 1/4.
    Then, Western Christendom in the middle ages burst on the scene with its unique feudal system.
    More bull$#!+. Feudalism was not unique to western Christendom, it had arisen before in lots of places whenever landowners became more powerful than government, including China, Japan and India.
    It was a decentralized system -- unlike the Russian feudalism where the czar picked the lords, the lords in the West were an independent class and thus played a countervailing role against the power of whatever prince, duke, king, or other ruler was over them. This created a system of real "checks and balances" -- as opposed to the phony ones which some laughably pretend exist between the branches of the current U.S.A. central government.
    That is absurd, ahistorical revisionism.
    The strong institutional church provided yet another check and balance on the power of the princes -- the Pope had an incentive to make sure the prince did not raise taxes too high, since this would harm his own ability to collect offerings, so, the Pope required the princes to ask for his permission before raising taxes. This feudal system allowed liberty to flourish as never before, and because of that a prosperity arose and flourished such as had never existed before on the face of the Earth.
    That is an absurd fabrication with no basis in fact. European feudalism was a period of unrelieved tyranny, poverty and stagnation leavened only by frequent warfare and slaughter. Whatever liberty existed was confined to the freemen who had land use rights on common lands, and thus could not be enslaved by the big feudal landowners.
    So give feudalism some respect. It made the modern world.
    That is an idiotic lie. The modern world awaited post-feudal institutions that began to emerge around the time the Crusades were ending: democratic governance of towns free of the yoke of feudalism in Italy, around the Baltic Sea (Hanseatic League) and in the Low Countries; a reformed Protestant church that was not run as a vast landed feudal estate, etc. In England, it was not the power of feudal lords that forced King John to sign the Magna Carta, but rather the fact that the feudal lords were themselves powerless to enslave free Englishmen who had the right to use land held in common, a right they did not lose until the feudal lords got together and passed enclosure laws in the 16th and 17th centuries. It was precisely the prevalence of non-feudal village commons that made Englishmen freer than the feudal serfs of continental Europe.
    It's not a perfect system, but without it we'd be digging in the dirt, barely eking out enough to eat, just as the man in 500 A.D. was doing, just as the man in 1000 B.C. was doing,
    Note how you have to pretend the whole period of high classical civilization in both Europe and Asia beginning in the 6th century BCE never happened.
    just as the man in 5000 B.C. was doing, and just as the man in 5000 A.D. would still be doing.
    No, that's just another idiotic fabrication from you.
    Political hegemony is a stable system -- it can (and did) go on indefinitely, for millennia.
    Nope. Never happened. You are just spewing idiotic lie after idiotic lie.
    But western-style feudalism, and its explosively successful -- unprecedented! -- wealth generation, turned the world upside-down and made it what it is today.
    Your claims are the diametric opposite of the truth. There was never any wealth generation at all under feudalism, let alone explosive or unprecedented wealth generation, because all surplus production had to be devoted to military purposes, whether defensive of offensive. Your claimed feudal prosperity simply never happened, and this fact is common knowledge attested by all archeological and historical data. Feudal libertarians just try to give feudalism a positive spin by lying about it.
    Which, inevitably, does not support your claims.
    If there is no one present to initiate force against, they cannot be initiating force.
    Garbage. If you set a trap to kill passersby, it initiates force because it will kill someone who shows up later. That is more or less what the land grabber does.
    If a man claims a location, and no one is yet present in that location -- and that is what homesteading means --
    No, of course it doesn't. That does not describe actual historical homesteading at all, so you are just makin' $#!+ up again. ACTUAL homesteading has almost always involved either appropriating land that others (hunter-gatherers or nomadic herders) were using at low intensity and gradually dispossessing them as more and more land is stolen from them, or the pre-emptive forcible dispossession, enslavement and/or slaughter of the whole population of aboriginal inhabitants to remove them from the land so homesteaders can steal it in "peace." Is there a single reliably attested historical case of a homesteader appropriating land where no one else was yet present in that location? If there is, I have never seen it. Certainly the homesteaders of the American West were not examples of such "innocent" appropriation. The aboriginal population had already been there for millennia, and was simply forcibly dispossessed.
    then he absolutely cannot be initiating force against anyone when he makes that claim. There's no one there! He cannot be molesting anyone, for there is no one around to molest.
    Even if someone were to homestead land in that fashion, when no one else was or had been around (an event never recorded in the history of the world, AFAIK), he would still be initiating force in much the same sense as the person who fashions a trap to kill passersby when no one is yet around. "There's no one there!" you exclaim, all innocence. Maybe not. But when they do show up, the trap is set to kill them.
    I think that you would, of necessity, to remain a rational being,
    This, from YOU??? ROTFL!!!

    This, from the soi-disant "rational being" who claimed land is essentially homogenous?

    This, from the soi-disant "rational being" who claimed natural resources have been bequeathed to us by "massive human labor and intelligence"?

    This, from the soi-disant "rational being" who claimed a chainsaw contains "raw matter"?

    ROTFL!
    agree with the above. Where you say the "initiation" of force comes in is when, years later, more people come to the area and this conversation ensues:

    "Hey, it's getting crowded, it's not fair you own that large location just because you got there first, we want to take it from you. Nature gave it to us, as well as you, after all."
    No, you are just lying again. The newcomers do not propose to take the land, simply to use it, or be justly compensated for being deprived of their liberty to do so.
    "I claimed this location as my own.
    "I stole it fair and square!" What on earth do you imagine claiming to own something nature provided accomplishes? How could it extinguish others' rights to liberty?
    No one objected to my claim.
    "No one objected when we claimed this continent for the King of Spain."

    "No one objected when I set my man-killer trap. Your tough luck if you thought you had a right to life."
    I consider it legitimate.
    Just as slave owners consider their ownership of their slaves legitimate -- and might even, as landowners do, get a government to agree with them.
    I have made many improvements to the original state of nature at this location -- improvements which would be very difficult or impossible to relocate to a different location. Please, respect my property as I respect yours."
    "Oh, we are very willing to respect your property -- your rightful property. You rightfully own what you have produced, no doubt about it. But you did not produce the land, so how can you claim you own it? If you want to exclude us from it so that you may enjoy the fixed improvements you have made to it, and wish to compensate us justly for the consequent loss of our liberty rather than simply initiating force against us, we are certainly willing to deal with you by mutual consent."
    "Ha! Meet my gun barrel, you puke-faced slaver. We won't stand for your feudalistic lies."
    It is the landholder who ALWAYS purposes to initiate force against the new arrivals, stop lying. Google "range war" and start reading.
    The homesteader, by taking exception to the mob's claim on that location, is thus, Mr. L. claims, initiating, or starting, an act of force against the mob.
    He is indeed. They just want to exercise their liberty to use what nature provided. He wants to stop them from doing so by force.
    One wonders if the definitions of defense and aggression have gotten a little tangled.
    They certainly have: in your head.
    The homesteader didn't start anything.
    He certainly did, the first time he presumed forcibly to exclude others from the opportunities nature provided.
    It is logically impossible to pretzel any way in which he could be said to have "initiated" the force.
    Lie. He indisputably initiated it: when others sought merely to exercise their rights to liberty, he pulled a gun.
    The homesteader was already there.
    No, sunshine: the LAND was already there. The homesteader simply purposes forcibly to deprive others of their liberty to use it. Please explain how his being there extinguishes others' rights to use the land that was there before he was.
    The homesteader just wants to defend what he sees as his property.
    What he "sees" as his property and what is rightly his property are two entirely different things.
    No one else has any claim on it, even under Mr. L.'s philofolly, since he has now stated he does not hold that the Universe is owned by everyone, but rather by no one.
    It is self-evidently and indisputably owned by no one. And everyone has exactly the same "claim on" it: their natural liberty to use it. But there is probably a stupid, evil, lying sack of $#!+ somewhere who claims that because no one has any claim to own the ocean, no one would have any right to use it if someone DID claim to own it. That is essentially the "argument" you are offering regarding the homesteading of land: the absence of ownership becoming somehow proof of ownership.
    That means that instead of everyone having a claim to the Universe,
    Another bait and switch lie. The claim everyone has to the universe is precisely their natural liberty to live in, access, and use it, which precludes any claim to own it.
    as I had incorrectly assumed he believed, no one has any claim whatsoever.
    Lie. Everyone has the same claim to it: their natural liberty to use it.
    Thus, no one in the mob has any legal or moral standing to challenge the homesteader.
    Lie, as proved above. Everyone who would otherwise have been at liberty to use the land has moral standing to challenge the homesteader's theft of it, just as they would to challenge a greed-maddened homesteader's claim to own the earth's atmosphere and charge them rent for air to breathe. You just refuse to know the fact that people have a rightful claim to atmospheric air to breathe, and that this is not a claim to own the earth's atmosphere.
    Defensive killing is not murder,
    But killing people to stop them from exercising their liberty to use what nature provided for all is not defensive killing. It is murder. You are rationalizing, justifying and excusing that murder. That is evil.
    and building a fence (or otherwise excluding vagrants
    Prospective productive users are not "vagrants." That's just more stupid and dishonest name calling on your part.
    from your backyard) bears no resemblance to slavery.
    Wrong, as already proved:

    "During the war I served in a Kentucky
    regiment in the Federal army. When the war
    broke out, my father owned sixty slaves.
    I had not been back to my old Kentucky
    home for years until a short time ago, when
    I was met by one of my father's old
    negroes, who said to me: 'Master George, you
    say you set us free; but before God,
    I'm worse off than when I belonged to your father.'
    The planters, on the other hand, are contented
    with the change. They say, ' How foolish it was in
    us to go to war for slavery. We get labor cheaper
    now than when we owned the slaves.' How do
    they get it cheaper? Why, in the shape of rents
    they take more of the labor of the negro than they
    could under slavery, for then they were compelled
    to return him sufficient food, clothing and medical
    attendance to keep him well, and were
    compelled by conscience and public opinion, as
    well as by law, to keep him when he
    could no longer work. Now their interest and
    responsibility cease when they have
    got all the work out of him they can."

    From a letter by George M. Jackson, St. Louis.
    Dated August 15, 1885.
    You're doing intellectual somersaults all in the service of the entitlement complex.
    In that everyone is entitled to equal rights, yes, I am arguing for an entitlement. You, OTOH, are denying that people are entitled to equal rights.

    It is the landowner who is legally entitled to pocket other people's taxes, not the landless, and you are doing intellectual somersaults in the service of that entitlement complex.
    If I swear at Helmuth enough, it will make his wrongness clear to everyone!
    No, I simply identify your dishonesty, and the fact that you are serving the greatest evil in the history of the world, an evil that makes slavery look like cheating on exams.
    To the contrary: we believe only in just titles, based on homesteading.
    Lie. I have already proved that you believe in stealing -- and slavery and murder -- and that the "just" titles you claim are based on homesteading are in fact based on forcible appropriation: i.e., stealing. Furthermore, it is impossible for you to believe only in just titles, as there is no way to convert an unjust current title to a just title. It is too late for homesteading. The land is already occupied.
    If a title can be shown to be illegitimate, based on initial aggression,
    I have proved that all land titles are illegitimate and based on initial aggression, and you have not come up with a single counterexample. In fact, you have not even tried, because you know very well that no such rightful title exists, or ever could exist. No one EVER bothers to homestead land that no one else has ever occupied or used, because such land is useless. Homesteaders only want useful land, and others -- if only hunter-gatherers or nomadic herders -- have always been there and used the land first. ALWAYS.
    then it should be declared invalid and the victims or their heirs regain their rightful property which was stolen from them.
    No one could ever have had "rightful property" in a privilege of violating others' rights without making just compensation; and even if they could, there is no way to identify who the victims were or who their rightful heirs might be. You know this. You simply purpose to accept current land titles as valid, and your idiotic and proved-false homesteading justification for them be damned.
    Aboriginal peoples robbed of their land through broken treaties, for instance, would have standing to bring claim against the holders of the robbed land.
    All such treaties, broken or otherwise, were made under duress, and were thus invalid from the outset. Do you really purpose to return all land to the descendants of its aboriginal inhabitants? Of course not. It's impossible, and you know that very well. You are just lying to rationalize landowner privilege.
    Descendants of slaves would have partial claim to the plantations of the slaveholders, for another instance.
    Idiocy. You KNOW there is no practical way to untangle such claims (going back how many thousands of years, hmmm? We are all the descendants of slaves, one way or another), so you are just offering a pro forma "reparation" with no practical effect to rationalize greed and injustice.
    I am not aware of it.
    Yes, of course you are.
    It seems not too late at all.
    You know very well it is too late. All the good land has already been stolen, most of it multiple times.
    The vast majority of the Universe remains unclaimed and open for homesteading.
    And totally useless for any such purpose.
    Even the majority of the locations of Earth (including oceans, Antarctica, northern Canada, many other currently-desolate places, aerial and underground locations, etc., etc.) are still available for homesteading, once a libertarian framework makes such homesteading possible.
    It's not lack of a "libertarian framework" that makes such homesteading impossible -- there is a fine libertarian framework governing the oceans outside territorial waters -- but the utter uselessness of the locations.
    Yes, England had primogeniture laws prohibiting the sale or division of the estates of the landed aristocracy. There, the land-owners really were like barons ruling over the serfs who were legally prevented from owning their own land.
    And that system arose from the kind of feudal libertarian system you advocate.
    That system broke in the American colonies, smashed against the reality of vast, open territory stretching endlessly to the west.
    "Open" territory already occupied and inhabited by no one we need trouble ourselves to consider at this late date....
    America does not have any landed aristocracy.
    Yes, it most certainly does, and it is getting worse.
    Families get land, families lose land, everything is ever and always in flux and everyone has a free and equal opportunity to buy their own land.
    Disgraceful. Having a "free and equal opportunity to buy" your right to liberty from its owner is not the same as actually having a right to liberty.
    Ted Turner famously owns vast tracts of land in America. John C. Malone, who no one's even heard of, owns even more. Who here thinks that 50 years from now the grandsons of Turner or Malone will still be the largest landowners in America? I sure don't.
    It is land value that matters, not acreage. You apparently aren't even aware of what the American landed aristocracy is. It is corporate-owned land -- by far the majority of land by value -- and those corporations being owned mainly by old monied families. Whether the grandsons of Turner or Malone still own their vast acreages 50 years from now is totally irrelevant: the great majority of land by value will still be owned by the same rich landowning families who own it today. They understand their privilege, even if you refuse to.
    Fortunes come and fortunes go -- that's the great thing about America.
    Nope. The DuPont heirs, as just one example, now number nearly 2000, with average net worth of over $100M.
    Freedom is a meritocracy.
    Which might be relevant, if we had freedom.
    Shirttails to shirttails in 3 generations.
    That is becoming rarer and rarer. It takes a really stupid rich kid to squander a fortune these days. You practically have to give the stuff away.
    There is no reason to fear this boogeyman of a big, scary, monolithic "landed aristocracy" in America. There is no such thing, and there is reason to believe there never will be any such thing. There is no primogeniture in America.
    It's happening right in front of your eyes, and you can't -- rather, you won't -- see it. What do you think has happened in the housing bubble and crash? Ordinary people have been turned into permanent debt slaves, and their tiny little scraps of land repossessed by the landed aristocracy that also owns the banks. "Homeownership" is alleged still to be widely distributed, but that has less and less to do with owning land: a growing fraction of those owner-occupied homes are condos with little claim on the land under them or trailers in trailer parks sitting on pads owned by the landed aristocracy.
    Right, O.K., no one then. No one has any claim upon any of the resources of the Universe whatsoever. Got it.
    Another bait and switch from you. No one can rightly claim to OWN them. Everyone has a rightful claim to use them: their right to liberty.
    Well, other than homesteading. That's a pretty good way of getting part of it to belong to you.
    But only the things you produce, which can never include the location, as that must already have been there for you to produce anything on it.
    But OK, according to your misosophy, no one owns, ever owns, nor can ever own, any part of the Universe.
    You again choose deliberately to lie about what I have plainly written. You have done nothing but heap disgrace upon yourself by your dishonesty.
    Natural liberty to use it? In other words: a right to use it?
    Natural liberty is a physical fact. A right to exercise it is a societal construct.
    A just claim upon the resources of the Universe?
    No, upon one's fellow human beings not to initiate force to deprive one of the liberty to use those resources.
    No, I'm sorry, no one has that. Any such claim is merely nonsense. The Universe belongs to no one, not everyone, remember?
    I remember: like the oceans or the earth's atmosphere, which indisputably belong to no one, yet which everyone indisputably has a right to use. I also remember that you always have to lie about what I have plainly written.
    No one has any right to use any portion of the Universe. It doesn't "belong" to them, you inform us.
    But in fact, only evil, lying, propertarian sacks of $#!+ ever claim that people have no right to use anything unless it belongs to them. People self-evidently and indisputably have rights to use things in nature -- the oceans, the atmosphere, the sun, the land -- that don't belong to them. That has been the case for millions of years, since long before anyone thought anything belonged to them but their own bodies and perhaps a few bits of wood, stone and hide. You know this. Of course you do. You have merely realized that it proves your whole belief system is false and evil, and so you chose deliberately to lie about it. And so you lied about it, just as if you were an evil, lying, propertarian sack of $#!+. In fact, I am having some difficulty telling the difference between you and an evil, lying, propertarian sack of $#!+.
    They have no "claim" on it, you educate us.
    You again lie about what I have plainly written. They have no claim to own it unless they have produced it or traded for another's product. They certainly have a claim to access and use anything nature provided: their rights to liberty.
    They cannot justly "own" it, you enlighten us. Now you want to tell us they have a "natural liberty" to it? Sorry, that's a contradiction.
    No, of course it isn't, stop lying. It self-evidently and indisputably is not a contradiction, because no one can own the earth's atmosphere, but everyone self-evidently and indisputably has the natural liberty to use it. You know this. Of course you do. You simply chose deliberately to lie about it, just as you have chosen deliberately to lie about everything else.
    Either mob-member X can claim the bounty of the Universe or he can't. You have told us that he can't. So he has no grievance with any person or factor preventing him from making that bogus claim.
    Huh?? ROTFL!! It is precisely the mob-member landowner who makes that bogus claim! And all whose rights to liberty that bogus claim would extinguish most certainly have a grievance with the greedy, thieving parasite who seeks to enforce it by initiating violence against others who only want to exercise their rights to liberty.
    You see how the Universe belonging to no one prevents your defense of the entitlement mentality.
    No, I don't, and neither do you, so you can stop lying. That you presume to call equal human rights to life and liberty an "entitlement mentality" speaks volumes -- and all of them are about your dishonesty and servitude to evil.
    If the Universe doesn't belong to the vagrant, he really has no entitlement to use it.
    Already proved a lie, not to mention a self-evidently vicious and evil repudiation of the right to life.
    Right to what? Liberty to what? To use portions of the Universe? But they have no such right nor liberty. You said.
    Lie.
    That's too bad. :^(
    Too bad you always have to lie about what I have plainly written.
    Well now wait, if all peoples of the world have a right to use the Universe, what does that "use" involve? Does it involve making decisions about it? Yes. Does it involve exercising exclusivity over it (only one person can drink that cup of water)? Yes. This is sounding suspiciously like ownership. In fact, it is ownership.
    No; in fact, you are just lying. Again. Inevitably. Making decisions about how one -- not others -- will use the universe, and exercising exclusivity that does not forcibly deprive others of their liberty to use it is self-evidently and indisputably NOT ownership. You know this. Of course you do. You merely decided you had better deliberately lie about it.
    If you use a gallon of water to put in your stomach, you have claimed ownership over that gallon of water. No one else can use it now. They may have had every right to use it, but they didn't. You didn't let them.
    Lie. I didn't stop them from using it.
    You took it. Now what? Who is in the right? Mr. L.'s misosophy has no coherent answer.
    Lie. Inevitably. Everyone is in the right as long as they don't initiate force to deprive others of what they would otherwise have without making just compensation, as landowners do. If that gallon of water was from a natural source that others are also at liberty to use, and there is plenty to go around, then I have deprived them of nothing, because they have suffered no deprivation. OTOH, if the water was scarce, as good land is, and others wanted to use it but now can't because I took it, then I owe them just compensation for depriving them of it, just as the landowner owes just compensation to all whose rights he violates by initiating force against them to deprive them of the liberty they would otherwise have to use the land.
    Other than, to be consistent with his answer to the problem of a man who claims a location, he would say that the mob ought to punch him in the gut until he vomits up the water for them to all get their "fair share".
    Another stupid lie, as always.
    Not a strawman, I figured you thought the Universe was owned by everyone, since this is what it means for everyone to have a just claim on the use of the Universe.
    No, it self-evidently isn't, stop lying. Everyone has a just claim to use of the atmosphere, the sun, etc., but do not own them. You know this. Of course you do. You simply decided deliberately to lie about it. Again. Inevitably.
    Instead, you think no one has such a claim. Yet you also think everyone has such a claim.
    Lie. A claim to atmospheric air to breathe, which everyone has, is not a claim to own the atmosphere, which no one has. You know this. Of course you do. You are just deliberately lying about it.
    Yet you most emphatically hold that no one has such a claim, and are outraged I would think otherwise. Yet you most definitely propound the self-evident truth that everyone has such a claim, and roil in fury that I might disagree
    <yawn> You just lie and lie and lie and lie and lie and lie and lie and lie and lie and lie and lie and lie and lie and lie and lie and lie and lie and lie and lie and lie and lie and lie and lie and lie and lie and lie and lie and lie and lie. Everyone has a right to breathe atmospheric air. The atmosphere nevertheless does not belong to anyone, nor to everyone. It belongs to no one. You know this. That proves you are lying again. You are LYING.
    In short: blank-out.
    In short: you have no answers, you know I have proved your beliefs are false and evil, so you choose deliberately to lie about what I have plainly written.
    How come it keeps getting disputed?
    Because evil, lying sacks of $#!+ have to deny self-evident and indisputable facts of objective physical reality in order to rationalize privilege, justify injustice and excuse evil. Hence your claims that land is essentially homogenous, that natural resources are produced by labor, that chainsaws contain raw matter, that "vagrants" have no right to exist, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.
    I am at a disadvantage, of course, because I am concerned about quality
    No, your only concern is to tell whatever lies will allow you to convince yourself that you are not serving evil.
    and so I do things such as actually read the entire post before responding, which it is as clear as day that you do not do, and then actually think about it, and then attempt substantive communication.
    You have never attempted substantive communication, because you know I will demolish you. All you ever do is lie about the self-evident and indisputable facts of objective physical reality and about what I have plainly written.
    As you typed your "replies" to all my lines above, you had no idea how this post would end.
    Yes, of course I did. I knew it would end just as it began and proceeded: with lies.
    All that's relevant is that every single sentence I type is a lie, and your job is merely to tag and identify them as such.
    Pretty much. I rarely respond to anything that is not provably fallacious, absurd and/or dishonest, but I do refute those claims quite relentlessly. The fact that this seems to include almost every sentence you write is a clue.
    This style of pure rhetorical debate lets you produce massively voluminous quantities of text extremely rapidly, since you don't have to craft any kind of overall structure or argumentative logic into your posts.
    What would be the point? You have proved you won't address anything I say, but simply lie about it.
    Anyway, on this matter of production bestowing just ownership: what is production? Production is mere transformation, taking matter, space, and perhaps other abstractions,
    Matter and space are not abstractions, duh.
    and forming them into something different and presumably more to your liking. When one produces a chainsaw, he transforms ores, oils, and fibers, into this finely-tuned tree-massacre machine. So how is it different to take and transform an empty prairie into a parking lot?
    One does not "take" the prairie out of nature as one does the ores, fibers, etc. One simply occupies it. The natural opportunity is still sitting there, under the cars. You are just initiating force against others to stop them from using it. The ores, etc., on the other hand, are gone. You do not have to initiate force against anyone to stop them from using the natural ore you used, because it no longer exists. The prairie, the space the parking lot occupies, still does.

    You will say and believe anything whatever in order to avoid knowing that fact.
    One takes a location, transforms the matter there to be flatter, more smoothly perpendicular to the direction of gravitation, perhaps adds in matter from other locations to create phenomenon like pavement, paint, and lighting. Both the chainsaw and the parking lot are produced from the raw resources of the Universe. Those raw resources have been transformed into something greater, or at least different, than their original form. The chainsaw, you say, has been produced, while the land on which the parking lot sits has not. But Mr. L.: it has!
    No, it self-evidently and indisputably has not. The parking lot has simply been put on top of the land. This is self-evident and indisputable. You have merely decided deliberately to lie about it. You even explicitly stated it yourself: "the land on which the parking lot sits."
    That land has been transformed, just as assuredly as the raw resources in the chainsaw.
    No, it self-evidently and indisputably has not. It is still sitting untouched under the parking lot, and if left alone long enough, the parking lot will again become natural land. The resources used to make the chainsaw, by contrast, have been removed from nature and NO LONGER EXIST. They will NEVER return to their natural state.
    If one can appropriate for one's self some pieces of the raw Universe by building a chainsaw with them, one can just as justly appropriate some pieces of it by building a parking lot with them.
    Notice how you had to say, "with" them, and not "on" them? You have just tacitly admitted that the resources used to make the pavement, paint lines, lighting, etc. of the parking lot are what one can justly appropriate, not the land you put them on.
    The raw ores were there all along. The surface of the Earth was there all along. Fine. But you changed it.
    The earth's surface is still there, while the ore is not. You know this.
    If you accept that the chainsaw owner can have absolute ownership over the matter composing the chainsaw, and the three-dimensional space which it monopolizes,
    He doesn't own the three-dimensional space it monopolizes, because he will lose all claim to it when the chainsaw is moved and monopolizes a different three-dimensional space. You want to own the land under the parking lot even after the parking lot is gone.
    you should at least be able to understand why I think it possible for the parking lot owner to have absolute ownership over the matter composing the parking lot and the location which it occupies.
    Of course I understand why: you want unearned wealth. Simple.

  29. #688

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    Quote Originally Posted by helmuth_hubener View Post
    I remembered one other thing I wanted to respond to: the land already being there, while the factory, allegedly, isn't.
    It indisputably isn't. It has to be built. The land doesn't.
    But it is. It's already there. It's already been built. The factory's existence is a fact of life. It's a done deal.
    Ayn Rand called that fallacy, "context dropping."
    The same efficiency argument applies to it as to the land: it's there anyway, so let's tax whoever owns it to force them into increased efficiency.
    Wrong. the supply is not fixed.
    Taxing the factory doesn't make the factory disappear, any more than taxing land makes it disappear.
    No, you are EXQUISITELY wrong. Early in the 19th century, Muhammad Ali, ruler of Egypt, decided to levy a tax on date palms -- trees that were ALREADY THERE. The result was that people CUT DOWN their date palms, and a chronic shortage of dates, and high date prices, set in. The same would happen with marginal factories subjected to taxation. Their owners would just burn them down rather than take a guaranteed loss.

    You COULD NOT BE more wrong.
    It just gets run more efficiently. In fact, remember, if the factory were to be abandoned,
    Which, if taxed, it might well be.
    it eventually would become philosophically land. In Will Smith's "I Am Legend" New York, (leaving aside the property rights of the zombies) all the skyscrapers, the cars, the gasoline, the canned food... these are all "land" for him. They are all just provided to him by nature as far as from an ethical or economic point of view.
    True: there is no source of additional supply.
    So why wait for it to be abandoned? Tax it now!
    Because there IS a source of additional supply, which won't supply factories that just turn into tax liabilities.
    Now taxing factory owners does provide a disincentive going forward to build *more* factories,
    It also provides a disincentive to have an existing factory.
    but so does taxing the Universe provide a disincentive going forward to open up more parts and resources of the Universe to productive use.
    No, it simply makes the incentive to do so accurate, rather than subsidizing feeding frenzies of wasteful rent seeking behavior. The incredible waste of gold rushes, land rushes, oil rushes etc. would not happen. Those who wanted to extract or exclude others from the resources would simply bid for tenure rights to do so in an efficient and orderly market allocation process.
    And while land and factories may be metaphysically unable to disappear,
    Factories, like date palms, are very able to disappear.
    yet you tax them too much and even the existing land and factories will be abandoned, and crumble or go fallow. They will cease to exist in the economy.
    It is true that taxing land at a more than infinite ad valorem rate will cause its value to become negative, leading to abandonment, and this has actually been done a few times in history. But it is pretty easy to avoid taxing things at a more than infinite rate.
    This goes back to what I keep saying: the amount of land in the economy can increase or decrease, and does all the time.
    No. The quantity of land in the economic sense does not increase or decrease except by natural processes. If by "in the economy" you mean the land that is in use, or is bought and sold, or is owned, that "amount of land" is irrelevant.
    It's not fixed at all!
    Land's supply is fixed by definition. Learn it, or continue to talk nonsense on this subject permanently.
    Last edited by Roy L; 11-14-2011 at 02:17 AM.

  30. #689
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    If by "in the economy" you mean the land that is in use, or is bought and sold, or is owned, that "amount of land" is irrelevant.
    ORLY? And why is that?
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    Which, inevitably, does not support your claims.
    Hmm, did you actually even follow the link?

    Does not support my claims. Man. How come that I posted it? My head hurt.
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