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Thread: Why not debtors' prison?

  1. #121

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    Quote Originally Posted by acptulsa View Post
    As I told you and told you and told you and told you, it is not tenable to encourage lenders to refuse to work with creditors or default their loans for the purpose of gaining the services of slaves. Were you paying attention this time?
    I NEVER EVER said I wanted to encourage lenders to not work with borrowers. But what do we do when they tried and worked and debtors still don't pay? YOU didn't pay attention when I said many times that this should be LAST RESORT, not as a substitution for people who can pay and are willing.

    I know you aren't seriously proposing the death penalty for fraud...
    You know?



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  3. #122

  4. #123

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tpoints View Post
    I NEVER EVER said I wanted to encourage lenders to not work with borrowers.
    Then stop advocating a policy that would do the very thing.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tpoints View Post
    You know?
    I do. Or at the very least, I am very hopeful that you do not lack a shred of sanity...
    The only way--the only way--the Republicans could possibly fail to capitalize on the Obamacare debacle and fail to win the White House in 2016 is by being stubborn and stupid enough to nominate someone besides Rand Paul.

    That's the only way they could possibly blow it. If we nominate Paul the presidency is a lock for the G.O.P. I guarantee it.

  5. #124

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tpoints View Post
    just like the victims of rape and robbery should seek justice on their own too. because its none of your business who he harms, right? all loans ARE already voluntary contracts, but what do you do to a breacher?
    There is a difference. You can easily specify what has to be done in case the debtor defaults before you lend out your money. Enforcing this contract should be a cost to you, just like fencing a farm is the responsibility of the farmer. If you don't make a fence, don't wonder when your cows are all gone some day. It's a cost of doing business.

    I do agree with you though, you should have to pay for your own security and rights enforcement. So in a way, yes, you should have to seek justice on your own (although any sane person would use a paid proxy, especially knowing that the aggressor has protection too). But while we won't be able to convert any country on earth to a perfect private law society within this century, getting rid of all laws regulating lending by pointing out that it's advantageous for all sides is more likely to translate into actual law, while being completely consistent with the ultimate goal.

  6. #125

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tpoints View Post
    Can I ask, do you agree that the bankruptcy system, essentially is the state subsidizing to encourage, if not activity supporting debtors and hurting creditors?
    The state would be subsidizing lenders with a debtors prison. Lenders are in the business to lend. They are not out to "do someone a favor." The interest rate reflects the perceived risk. Part of the lender's transaction cost is acquiring and evaluating risk. If they fail to do so in one way or another, they must bear the loss, much like an auto manufacturer that builds and markets a product that no one wants to buy.

  7. #126

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    Quote Originally Posted by acptulsa View Post
    Then stop advocating a policy that would do the very thing.
    No, it wouldn't, not if they require it to be last resort or for the lender to prove they have made diligent effort and the borrower is being difficult. But you want them to walk off freely.

    I do. Or at the very least, I am very hopeful that you do not lack a shred of sanity...
    Telling people they are free to agree to be killed makes me insane?

  8. #127

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    Quote Originally Posted by anaconda View Post
    The state would be subsidizing lenders with a debtors prison. Lenders are in the business to lend. They are not out to "do someone a favor." The interest rate reflects the perceived risk. Part of the lender's transaction cost is acquiring and evaluating risk. If they fail to do so in one way or another, they must bear the loss, much like an auto manufacturer that builds and markets a product that no one wants to buy.
    so is there a middle ground? Would you be in favor of not letting people discharge debt, and continue to let creditor harass the debtor until he either pays back or kills himself or hides the rest of his life wishing he did?

  9. #128

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    Quote Originally Posted by Danan View Post
    There is a difference. You can easily specify what has to be done in case the debtor defaults before you lend out your money. Enforcing this contract should be a cost to you, just like fencing a farm is the responsibility of the farmer. If you don't make a fence, don't wonder when your cows are all gone some day. It's a cost of doing business.

    I do agree with you though, you should have to pay for your own security and rights enforcement. So in a way, yes, you should have to seek justice on your own (although any sane person would use a paid proxy, especially knowing that the aggressor has protection too). But while we won't be able to convert any country on earth to a perfect private law society within this century, getting rid of all laws regulating lending by pointing out that it's advantageous for all sides is more likely to translate into actual law, while being completely consistent with the ultimate goal.
    did you just say you believe rape victims and robbers should take care of their own business and leave the state, society and taxpayers alone?

  10. #129
    Quiz: Test Your "Income" Tax IQ!

    The Income Tax Is An Excise, And Excise Taxes Are Privilege Taxes

    The Federalist Papers, No. 15:

    Except as to the rule of apportionment, the United States have an indefinite discretion to make requisitions for men and money; but they have no authority to raise either by regulations extending to the individual citizens of America.

  11. #130
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    Prisons, ideally, have ONE role: to keep those who are imminent threats to others from doing harm. You and I can't restrain or imprison someone unless it is to defend ourselves or others, so neither should the govt be able to.
    "You cannot solve these problems with war." - Ron Paul

  12. #131

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    I am not going to read 7 pages in hopes that someone will point out the very basic argument that debt is a civil matter, not a crime [/thread]
    The kids they dance and shake their bones,
    While the politicians are throwing stones,
    And it's all too clear we're on our own,
    Singing ashes, ashes, all fall down...

  13. #132

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheGrinchWhoStoleDC View Post
    I am not going to read 7 pages in hopes that someone will point out the very basic argument that debt is a civil matter, not a crime [/thread]
    what is the rationale for separating the 2?

  14. #133
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tpoints View Post
    what is the rationale for separating the 2?
    The rationale (not that I agree with it) is that criminal law is meant to protect society at large from people who are threats to the general public while civil law is meant to right the wrongs perpetrated against specific individuals (i.e. tort/contract laws).

    A debtor has a specific, usually contractually bound, "victim" that can monetize their losses and seek redress.
    "You cannot solve these problems with war." - Ron Paul

  15. #134

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tpoints View Post
    what is the rationale for separating the 2?
    No sorry, I'm going to bed. I'm sure you can take a Law 101 class at the community college down the road if you wish to learn more about the difference between criminal and civil law.

    Or in short, debt isn't a criminal offense (unless you're dealing with the IRS mob who gives you no choice), because well, you don't have to be a criminal for life to happen and find yourself unable to pay. That doesn't mean the system is perfect, but certainly incarceration isn't the answer, when restitution is the matter.

    There are particular reasons for incarceration (agree or disagree), but owing someone money in an agreed-upon exchange does not call for you being removed from society, that's just absurd.
    Last edited by TheGrinch; 02-04-2013 at 11:45 PM.
    The kids they dance and shake their bones,
    While the politicians are throwing stones,
    And it's all too clear we're on our own,
    Singing ashes, ashes, all fall down...

  16. #135

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheGrinchWhoStoleDC View Post

    Or in short, debt isn't a criminal offense
    what makes something a criminal offense other than the circular reason that there's a criminal law for it? So if we made debt a criminal offense does that solve your problem?

  17. #136
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tpoints View Post
    what makes something a criminal offense other than the circular reason that there's a criminal law for it? So if we made debt a criminal offense does that solve your problem?
    In practice, nothing but circular reasoning makes something a criminal offense.

    In (statist) theory, criminal law is there to protect the innocent from dangerous behavior, punish perpetrators, and deter 'crime' through threats of punishments. Civil law is meant to make victims whole. This is why OJ Simpson was tried in both criminal court (under threat of prison) and civil court (for payment to the specific victims) for the murders.

    Criminal law has no role in a free society because proper restitution to victims is the best deterrent to crime; and prisons only have the role to restrain people who are imminent threats.
    "You cannot solve these problems with war." - Ron Paul

  18. #137

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    Quote Originally Posted by mczerone View Post
    In practice, nothing but circular reasoning makes something a criminal offense.

    In (statist) theory, criminal law is there to protect the innocent from dangerous behavior, punish perpetrators, and deter 'crime' through threats of punishments. Civil law is meant to make victims whole. This is why OJ Simpson was tried in both criminal court (under threat of prison) and civil court (for payment to the specific victims) for the murders.

    Criminal law has no role in a free society because proper restitution to victims is the best deterrent to crime; and prisons only have the role to restrain people who are imminent threats.
    so you vindicated my prediction again, that people who object to a debtor prison proposal ultimately argue that in their ideal world, there would be no prisons, no laws, and nothing is criminal.

  19. #138
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tpoints View Post
    I NEVER EVER said I wanted to encourage lenders to not work with borrowers. But what do we do when they tried and worked and debtors still don't pay? YOU didn't pay attention when I said many times that this should be LAST RESORT, not as a substitution for people who can pay and are willing.
    OK, this thread has taken on the flavor of a giant troll and shame on me for feeding it, but I will weigh in one last time with the bone jarring obvious answer.

    We have in the USA an institution called the court of equity. When someone causes a loss to another, whether defaulting on a loan or driving his 1970 VW hippie bus through someone's living room, the damaged party demands restitution. That failing, he secures the services of a lawyer and files an action. The action is settled one way or the other and then collection is to be made in the event the plaintiff prevails. What happens thereafter is another story, but up until that point there is a thing called "due process of law" - perhaps you have heard the term before? That is how these matters are settled.

    There is another problem with the notion of a debtor's prison. Because no crime has been committed yet loss incurred, at what threshold is prison called for? Do you put people into prison who owe $1MM? How about $500K? $10K? $100? $1.79? A penny? The principle, after all, is precisely the same in all cases. If we do not imprison people for a penny, why not when there is no substantive difference between that and owing a billion dollars?

    I notice you did not respond to my previous post, which would suggest you are either not being careful or are uninterested in the correct answer to your original question. The answer has been posted and it is a pretty clear and simple affair. That this thread has gone on this long is a disturbing indicator that people's time is being wasted.
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    The monster saw my determination in my face and gnashed his teeth in the impotence of anger. "Shall each man," cried he, "find a wife for his bosom, and each beast have his mate, and I be alone? I had feelings of affection, and they were requited by detestation and scorn. Man! You may hate, but beware! Your hours will pass in dread and misery, and soon the bolt will fall which must ravish from you your happiness forever. Are you to be happy while I grovel in the intensity of my wretchedness? You can blast my other passions, but revenge remains--revenge, henceforth dearer than light or food! I may die, but first you, my tyrant and tormentor, shall curse the sun that gazes on your misery. Beware, for I am fearless and therefore powerful. I will watch with the wiliness of a snake, that I may sting with its venom. Man, you shall repent of the injuries you inflict.

  20. #139

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    Quote Originally Posted by osan View Post
    There is another problem with the notion of a debtor's prison. Because no crime has been committed yet loss incurred, at what threshold is prison called for?
    That's like asking what amount you have to steal to be in prison, isn't it? $100? $500? $50,000? Do you believe people should be in prison or punished for theft? If so, how much?

    Do you put people into prison who owe $1MM? How about $500K? $10K? $100? $1.79? A penny?
    Whatever makes it worthwhile. It's hard to imagine a person would owe $100 and file for bankruptcy. So the threshold would likely be above $100K (but I'll say it again, and as much as necessary, IT MUST BE LAST RESORT WHEN YOU KNOW THE DEBTOR HAS NO INTENTION OR ABILITY TO PAY). That's just a guess to give you an idea, I'm sure you have a million reasons why that's wrong, as if you have a better answer.

    The principle, after all, is precisely the same in all cases.
    Like I ever cared about in "principle" whatever. And no, not precisely the same, you made that up.

    If we do not imprison people for a penny, why not when there is no substantive difference between that and owing a billion dollars?
    WHO said there's no substantive difference between having, losing, stealing, owing, taking, robbing, transfering a penny vs a billion dollars? EVER? FIND ME ONE PERSON WHO SAID THAT OR SHOVE THIS STRAWMAN DOWN YOUR OWN THROAT.


    I notice you did not respond to my previous post, which would suggest you are either not being careful or are uninterested in the correct answer to your original question. The answer has been posted and it is a pretty clear and simple affair. That this thread has gone on this long is a disturbing indicator that people's time is being wasted.
    I'll go back and look. Sorry.
    Last edited by Tpoints; 02-05-2013 at 07:03 AM.

  21. #140

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    Quote Originally Posted by osan View Post
    You are apparently not familiar with the nature of business and risk. Voluntary engagement in business agreements, all business agreements carries with it risk. Risk should be entered into only after having been given its due consideration. Given that, any and all business ventures are prone to the risk of failure, often through no fault of the parties involved. This is par for the course and all parties to such agreements understand and accept this. When such endeavors fail "organically", no crime has occurred and therefore there exists no basis for charges, much less imprisonment.
    That doesn't address when a person purposes breaches contract or admits he will not pay even if he can. Should we ever punish people who purposely owes money to hurt people?

    Normal business risk, whether low or high, is fundamentally different from criminal activity such as fraud, which is​ a crime and should be addressed accordingly.
    What is the difference? Just because one is listed on the criminal law books and the other isn't? Why not solve that problem by adding another item?

  22. #141

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tpoints View Post
    what makes something a criminal offense other than the circular reason that there's a criminal law for it? So if we made debt a criminal offense does that solve your problem?
    Look, Trollpoints, there are people (even here) who do not consider the body of laws established by the people of a republic part of an instance of 'circular reasoning'. Most disagree with your assertion (posted earlier in this thread) that fraud should be a capital crime.

    That said, fraud is a crime, and if it can be proven, will land a person in jail. This is a fact that has been repeated in this thread, and which you (in the most trollish manner imaginable) have ignored to your convenience so you can continue your silly assed thread unimpeded.

    The world is just as you want it to be, with the exceptions that proof of guilt is required before a person is punished and fraud is not considered a captial crime. Are you really so intransigent in your love affair with the banksters that you cannot compromise on those two points? And do you really expect to convince rational people to adapt to your line of thinking on those two points?

    Psychologists can be your friend.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tpoints View Post
    What is the difference? Just because one is listed on the criminal law books and the other isn't? Why not solve that problem by adding another item?
    Just what the nation needs--more laws.

    What part of fraud is a crime are you pretending not to understand?
    Last edited by acptulsa; 02-05-2013 at 07:17 AM.
    The only way--the only way--the Republicans could possibly fail to capitalize on the Obamacare debacle and fail to win the White House in 2016 is by being stubborn and stupid enough to nominate someone besides Rand Paul.

    That's the only way they could possibly blow it. If we nominate Paul the presidency is a lock for the G.O.P. I guarantee it.

  23. #142

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    Quote Originally Posted by acptulsa View Post
    Look, Trollpoints, there are people (even here) who do not consider the body of laws established by the people of a republic part of an instance of 'circular reasoning'. Most disagree with your assertion (posted earlier in this thread) that fraud should be a capital crime.

    That said, fraud is a crime, and if it can be proven, will land a person in jail. This is a fact that has been repeated in this thread, and which you (in the most trollish manner imaginable) have ignored to your convenience so you can continue your silly assed thread unimpeded.
    I am aware crimes are crimes. What i haven't seen an answer to (at least not from you, in my memory), is why crimes are crimes, and why owing money and admitting your intent to never pay it back can't be one. If you don't consider it circular reasoning, I bet you can tell me why.

    The world is just as you want it to be, with the exceptions that proof of guilt is required before a person is punished and fraud is not considered a captial crime.
    Fraud is not a capital crime because it's not a capital crime, are you going to tell me something I don't know? Who said I didn't want debtors to be punished only after they can prove intent and guilt?

    Are you really so intransigent in your love affair with the banksters
    Are you really so ignorant to think only banksters are creditors?

    that you cannot compromise on those two points? And do you really expect to convince rational people to adapt to your line of thinking on those two points?

    Psychologists can be your friend.

    Just what the nation needs--more laws.
    Or less, I'll be pretty happy if we get rid of bankruptcy protection.

    What part of fraud is a crime are you pretending not to understand?
    The WHY part and WHY we can't make owing money plus intent to never pay back another crime.

  24. #143
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    Quote Originally Posted by Acala View Post
    Government shouldn't be in the business of enforcing people's contracts. If you make a bad deal and end up being unable to collect what is owed you, that is YOUR problem, not mine. Fraud would be another matter and I approve of the use of force to obtain restitution in those instances. But breech of contract? That's a private matter. Be more careful next time you lend your money.
    Right --the Constitution allows one to go bankrupt to avoid just this

  25. #144

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    Quote Originally Posted by bobbyw24 View Post
    Right --the Constitution allows one to go bankrupt to avoid just this
    is that essentially letting the state discharge debt, encourage irresponsible lending, screw lenders, and subsidize bad behavior of debtors?

  26. #145

    Default "Prisons" as we know them are not an appropriate punishment.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tpoints View Post
    My prediction : people here will say because there's a system wide conspiracy to either bait stupid people into debt, or fraudulently force people into debt they'd never incur voluntarily. But hopefully people agree that if debts were voluntarily created, then prisons would be an appropriate punishment when debts can't be expected to be paid back (and bankruptcy discharging debts makes a mockery of responsibility)

    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/26/op...ison.html?_r=0
    Listen to both parts of episode 1 of Sortocracy's Compassion for the reason prisons as we know them are not an appropriate punishment except as voluntarily agreed to by those who wish to remain part of the body politic whose laws they have violated.

  27. #146

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tpoints View Post
    what makes something a criminal offense other than the circular reason that there's a criminal law for it? So if we made debt a criminal offense does that solve your problem?
    Maybe if you don't cut off the rest of my quote, you won't make me have to repeat myself:
    because well, you don't have to be a criminal for life to happen and find yourself unable to pay. That doesn't mean the system is perfect, but certainly incarceration isn't the answer, when restitution is the matter.
    Restitution is a civil matter... You said something along the lines of "won't pay even if they can pay", well, civil court will make sure that what you can pay you will pay, you cannot have millions and just say "no, I won't pay my contractual obligation", the courts will make you.

    Sorry, but I cannot believe this has made it 8 pages, and you're still ignoring the abundantly obvious that debt in most cases is not a criminal matter, and that's not jsut because I or anyone else says so. It simply doesn't fall under the definition of willingly infringing on someone else's liberty.

    I'm sad to admit that I've racked up some debt recently, but I'm no criminal, nor are most debtees.
    Last edited by TheGrinch; 02-05-2013 at 12:15 PM.
    The kids they dance and shake their bones,
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    And it's all too clear we're on our own,
    Singing ashes, ashes, all fall down...

  28. #147
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tpoints View Post
    so you vindicated my prediction again, that people who object to a debtor prison proposal ultimately argue that in their ideal world, there would be no prisons, no laws, and nothing is criminal.
    I explicitly said that there would be a role for prisons in my "ideal world."
    "You cannot solve these problems with war." - Ron Paul

  29. #148

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tpoints View Post
    so is there a middle ground? Would you be in favor of not letting people discharge debt, and continue to let creditor harass the debtor until he either pays back or kills himself or hides the rest of his life wishing he did?
    I am OK with bankruptcy.

  30. #149

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    Debtors' Prisons, boo hiss.

    Beyond that, I urge those Free Marketers who favor privatization of prisons (AND TSA) to revisit the concept.

    Incarceration Inc.
    7 August 2012

    Imprisonment is not rightly a FOR PROFIT scheme. Locking people up for profit is BAD.

    Political Correctness and Moral Relativism encourage people to believe-more-like-rationalize that EVERYTHING has shades of gray, that NOTHING is “black and white”. DEAD OR ALIVE is black and white.

    Incarcerating people for profit is unambiguously BAD/WRONG.

    Imprisonment falls under the Necessary Evil umbrella, same as Taxes. The objective with Necessary Evils is LOGICALLY to require as few of them and as little of each as possible.

    Generally speaking...Econ 101 generally...society will get more of whatever turns a profit. Lo and behold, the land of the free and the home of the brave has the largest prison population on earth. Not “just” the largest per capita, the LARGEST. Though China and India have over a BILLION people apiece, the “United” States has the largest prison population.

    The shining light on the hill...lol, the beacon of hope...locks up more people for a greater number of lesser offenses AND locks them up for longer periods of time.

    Read it and weep: http://www.nytimes.com/2008/04/23/world ... wanted=all

    To privatize prisons is to INCENTIVIZE incarceration. “Naturally”, more and more people will be incarcerated.

    More and more people will be incarcerated because it constitutes more business, which generates more revenue, from whence come salaries and bonuses and profits and such. The infamous Silent Majority will ALLOW more and more people to be locked up for profit because freedom from the EXPENSE of imprisoning people frees free people even from AWARENESS of the unjustly imprisoned.

    If Americans are willing to LOCK HUMAN BEINGS BEHIND BARS, they had damned well better be willing to PAY for it. PAYING for the “privilege” of removing people from society and stripping them of rights is a fundamental deterrent to abuse of the practice.

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