View Poll Results: Is It EVER Justifiable To Violate Someone's Rights To Prevent A Larger Rights Violation?

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  • Yes

    6 46.15%
  • No

    7 53.85%
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Thread: Libertarian Pragmatism

  1. #1

    Default Libertarian Pragmatism

    Is it ever justifiable to violate someone's rights to prevent a larger rights violation?

    Some hypotheticals to ponder as you make your decision:

    A. 1916, the bolshevik party is outlawed and its members executed (they've committed no crime yet); the bolshevik revolution is thus prevented.

    B. Operation Valkyrie - you have a chance to kill Hitler, but it's on a public street, where there will be "collateral damage."

    C. A person accused of a crime is afforded due process, found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, & punished; there's still a chance he's innocent.
    Last edited by r3volution 3.0; 05-13-2017 at 04:29 PM.
    "The program of liberalism, ...if condensed into a single word, would have to read: property..."

    -Ludwig von Mises

    "Patriotism, not nationalism, should inspire the citizen. The ethnic nationalist who wants a linguistically and culturally uniform nation is akin to the racist who is intolerant toward those who look (and behave) differently. The patriot is a "diversitarian"; he is pleased, indeed proud of the variety within the borders of his country; he looks for loyalty from all citizens. And he looks up and down, not left and right."

    -Erik Maria Ritter von Kuehnelt-Leddihn

    "All the odds are on the man who is, intrinsically, the most devious and mediocre — the man who can most adeptly disperse the notion that his mind is a virtual vacuum. The Presidency tends, year by year, to go to such men. As democracy is perfected, the office represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. We move toward a lofty ideal. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last, and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron."

    -H. L. Mencken



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  3. #2

    Default

    A & B are strawmen not worthy of response.
    C is an unfortunate necessity.
    Never attempt to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and annoys the pig.

    Robert Heinlein

    Give a man an inch and right away he thinks he's a ruler

    Groucho Marx

    I love mankind…it’s people I can’t stand.

    Linus, from the Peanuts comic

    You cannot have liberty without morality and morality without faith

    Alexis de Torqueville

    Those who fail to learn from the past are condemned to repeat it.
    Those who learn from the past are condemned to watch everybody else repeat it

    A Zero Hedge comment

  4. #3

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Swordsmyth View Post
    C is an unfortunate necessity.
    To further clarify, NOTHING man does can be perfect. Compensation for the wrongly convicted/escaped culprit must be entrusted to GOD.
    Never attempt to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and annoys the pig.

    Robert Heinlein

    Give a man an inch and right away he thinks he's a ruler

    Groucho Marx

    I love mankind…it’s people I can’t stand.

    Linus, from the Peanuts comic

    You cannot have liberty without morality and morality without faith

    Alexis de Torqueville

    Those who fail to learn from the past are condemned to repeat it.
    Those who learn from the past are condemned to watch everybody else repeat it

    A Zero Hedge comment

  5. #4

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Swordsmyth View Post
    A & B are strawmen not worthy of response.
    How's that?

    C is an unfortunate necessity.
    Agreed
    "The program of liberalism, ...if condensed into a single word, would have to read: property..."

    -Ludwig von Mises

    "Patriotism, not nationalism, should inspire the citizen. The ethnic nationalist who wants a linguistically and culturally uniform nation is akin to the racist who is intolerant toward those who look (and behave) differently. The patriot is a "diversitarian"; he is pleased, indeed proud of the variety within the borders of his country; he looks for loyalty from all citizens. And he looks up and down, not left and right."

    -Erik Maria Ritter von Kuehnelt-Leddihn

    "All the odds are on the man who is, intrinsically, the most devious and mediocre — the man who can most adeptly disperse the notion that his mind is a virtual vacuum. The Presidency tends, year by year, to go to such men. As democracy is perfected, the office represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. We move toward a lofty ideal. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last, and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron."

    -H. L. Mencken

  6. #5

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by r3volution 3.0 View Post
    How's that?

    Classic use of BOOGEYMEN to force a conclusion.
    Never attempt to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and annoys the pig.

    Robert Heinlein

    Give a man an inch and right away he thinks he's a ruler

    Groucho Marx

    I love mankind…it’s people I can’t stand.

    Linus, from the Peanuts comic

    You cannot have liberty without morality and morality without faith

    Alexis de Torqueville

    Those who fail to learn from the past are condemned to repeat it.
    Those who learn from the past are condemned to watch everybody else repeat it

    A Zero Hedge comment

  7. #6

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Swordsmyth View Post
    Classic use of BOOGEYMEN to force a conclusion.
    Those "Boogeymen" were real.

    People like Bolsheviks and Hitlers did, do, and will continue to exist.
    "The program of liberalism, ...if condensed into a single word, would have to read: property..."

    -Ludwig von Mises

    "Patriotism, not nationalism, should inspire the citizen. The ethnic nationalist who wants a linguistically and culturally uniform nation is akin to the racist who is intolerant toward those who look (and behave) differently. The patriot is a "diversitarian"; he is pleased, indeed proud of the variety within the borders of his country; he looks for loyalty from all citizens. And he looks up and down, not left and right."

    -Erik Maria Ritter von Kuehnelt-Leddihn

    "All the odds are on the man who is, intrinsically, the most devious and mediocre — the man who can most adeptly disperse the notion that his mind is a virtual vacuum. The Presidency tends, year by year, to go to such men. As democracy is perfected, the office represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. We move toward a lofty ideal. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last, and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron."

    -H. L. Mencken

  8. #7

    Default

    You don't need a hypothetical. Pinochet was justified in ousting Allende and then killing Communist protesters who wanted a Communist revolution. The alternative of Communism is so much worse that doing whatever is necessary to stop it would be justified.

    I don't think Hugo Chavez or Castro need a trial. Assassinating them would have been fine.
    Last edited by Krugminator2; 05-13-2017 at 06:17 PM.

  9. #8

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Krugminator2 View Post
    You don't need a hypothetical. Pinochet was justified in ousting Allende and then killing Communist protesters who wanted a Communist revolution. The alternative of Communism is so much worse that doing whatever is necessary to stop it would be justified.

    I don't think Hugo Chavez or Castro need a trial. Assassinating them would have been fine.
    Be careful. Dems would say the same of us.
    Never attempt to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and annoys the pig.

    Robert Heinlein

    Give a man an inch and right away he thinks he's a ruler

    Groucho Marx

    I love mankind…it’s people I can’t stand.

    Linus, from the Peanuts comic

    You cannot have liberty without morality and morality without faith

    Alexis de Torqueville

    Those who fail to learn from the past are condemned to repeat it.
    Those who learn from the past are condemned to watch everybody else repeat it

    A Zero Hedge comment

  10. #9

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by r3volution 3.0 View Post
    Is it ever justifiable to violate someone's rights to prevent a larger rights violation?

    Some hypotheticals to ponder as you make your decision:

    A. 1916, the bolshevik party is outlawed and its members executed (they've committed no crime yet); the bolshevik revolution is thus prevented.

    B. Operation Valkyrie - you have a chance to kill Hitler, but it's on a public street, where there will be "collateral damage."

    C. A person accused of a crime is afforded due process, found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, & punished; there's still a chance he's innocent.

    How many doods need to die to prevent one from sending you a cobra in the mail?
    All modern revolutions have ended in a reinforcement of the power of the State.
    -Albert Camus

  11. #10

    Default

    Is It EVER Justifiable To Violate Someone's Rights To Prevent A Larger Rights Violation?
    Well that depends what we're talking about. If you see someone about to be killed in a locked house or building I would advocate rescuing them regardless of the destruction to personal property you cause. Because life is the greatest and most sacred right trumping other property rights. I guess in some ways that might make me a pragmatist to some but to me its a no brainer.
    But I'm not going to endorse specific greater good government policies. Those never seem to work for the greater good.

    Quote Originally Posted by r3volution 3.0 View Post
    Is it ever justifiable to violate someone's rights to prevent a larger rights violation?

    Some hypotheticals to ponder as you make your decision:

    A. 1916, the bolshevik party is outlawed and its members executed (they've committed no crime yet); the bolshevik revolution is thus prevented.
    Hindsight is 20/20 they say. There are a few problems with this kind of example. 1, outlawing and executing rebels both good and bad has been the policy of most governments since the dawn of time and it doesn't always work. Often it just emboldens their sympathizers. So in theory its easy to say outlawing Bolshevism would have averted the Russian Revolution but in practice we will never know. Especially since trying to carry it out probably would have ended up in some of the minions losing their lives and not the bigwigs like Stalin and Lenin.

    2, how would you apply that in the real world? We have disagreements with supporters authoritarians on all sides of the spectrum. We know certain of the masses tend towards supporting their leaders no matter what evil they do. This doesn't mean that trying to wipe out supporters of bad policies is moral. Nor does it mean it will be effective.

    B. Operation Valkyrie - you have a chance to kill Hitler, but it's on a public street, where there will be "collateral damage."
    Yeah, I don't really accept the premise. You say in your scenario there will be collateral damage as if there's nothing else to be done. With any situation like that you do your best to ensure innocents are not hurt. If they are you screwed up. If your wife was going to be near where Hitler was you sure as hell would find a safer time and place, so don't give me this innocents must die or Hitler destroys humanity crap. I don't buy it. Certainly in war and such things that are things that are done that put innocent people at risk. That's why war and violence are so terrible. But even then if moral people are acting they will try to minimize the risk towards innocents.

    C. A person accused of a crime is afforded due process, found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, & punished; there's still a chance he's innocent.
    If I thought there was a chance he's innocent I wouldn't support punishing him. So you must have a lower burden of proof for "reasonable doubt". If there is a chance he is innocent I think the justice system if it is true to its name would look for evidence he is innocent and overturn his conviction if any is found. This mindset we have these days that everyone has to be found guilty or not guilty and that's the end of it is sick. It should be about the truth whenever it comes out.
    Freedom index

    ~Resident Badgiraffe





  12. #11

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by William Tell View Post
    Well that depends what we're talking about. If you see someone about to be killed in a locked house or building I would advocate rescuing them regardless of the destruction to personal property you cause. Because life is the greatest and most sacred right trumping other property rights. I guess in some ways that might make me a pragmatist to some but to me its a no brainer.
    I should add if such a situation happens the owner of the property destroyed should be compensated.
    Freedom index

    ~Resident Badgiraffe





  13. #12

    Default

    Violation of a right can never ever be justifiable. This is axiomatic because a right is by definition right.
    ΟΥ ΓΑΡ ЄCΤΙΝ ЄξΟΥCΙΑ ЄΙ ΜΗ ΥΠΟ ΘЄΟΥ

    "Patriotism should come from loving thy neighbor, not from worshiping graven images" - Ironman77

    "ideas have the potential of being more powerful than any army....The concept of personal sovereignty was pulled screaming from the ether into this reality by the force of men believing in a self evident truth, that men are meant to be free." - The Northbreather

    "People who place their trust in government don't like competition from charities." - Origanalist

  14. #13

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Krugminator2 View Post
    You don't need a hypothetical. Pinochet was justified in ousting Allende and then killing Communist protesters who wanted a Communist revolution. The alternative of Communism is so much worse that doing whatever is necessary to stop it would be justified.
    That $#@! goes sideways in no time at all.

    The only solution is true freedom and a warrior culture. Things tend to work themselves out about as well as can be expected.
    Through lives and lives shalt thou pay, O' king.


    Be a warrior abhorrent of war, willing to wage it in the face of trespass.

  15. #14

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by The Rebel Poet View Post
    Violation of a right can never ever be justifiable. This is axiomatic because a right is by definition right.
    As the otherwise mediocre band says, " If you choose not to decide, you still have made a choice."
    "The program of liberalism, ...if condensed into a single word, would have to read: property..."

    -Ludwig von Mises

    "Patriotism, not nationalism, should inspire the citizen. The ethnic nationalist who wants a linguistically and culturally uniform nation is akin to the racist who is intolerant toward those who look (and behave) differently. The patriot is a "diversitarian"; he is pleased, indeed proud of the variety within the borders of his country; he looks for loyalty from all citizens. And he looks up and down, not left and right."

    -Erik Maria Ritter von Kuehnelt-Leddihn

    "All the odds are on the man who is, intrinsically, the most devious and mediocre — the man who can most adeptly disperse the notion that his mind is a virtual vacuum. The Presidency tends, year by year, to go to such men. As democracy is perfected, the office represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. We move toward a lofty ideal. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last, and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron."

    -H. L. Mencken

  16. #15

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by The Rebel Poet View Post
    Violation of a right can never ever be justifiable. This is axiomatic because a right is by definition right.
    I understand what you are saying here, and the emotional appeal is strong. However, it fails to take into account conflicts of interest.

    A mugger attacks you, seeking to take your property. He has no right to your property, but retains his right to life. You, of course, retain your right to the property in question, which could include your very life. Now what? Your choice is to allow the mugger to do as he pleases, or to defend against him with possible fatality being the result for him, in apparent violation of his right to life. That, of course, is a flawed view of the situation because the mugger is acting criminally. When doing so, one places his own claims (rights) in peril. It may be validly argued one way or the other as to whether a man has a right to act criminally, especially under certain circumstances. For instance, the starving man lost in the wilderness scenario where he stumbles upon a hunting cable, breaks in, and tends to his most basic needs in violation of the property rights of the owner of the edifice.

    Whatever the position on such a matter, the violator nonetheless places himself at risk when committing crimes against others, even when he does so to save his own life.

    For instance, imagine Johnny chooses to commit an act of self-preservation that will result in the death or injury to one or more others. Jimmy sees the pending threat, draws a weapon and shoots Johnny stone dead in order to save the would-be victims. We can assume anything we want about Johnny's knowledge aforethought, it makes no matter - he knew or did not know what his choice would precipitate for the others - he still holds the right to preserve himself, even if it results in the death of others. Why? Because he holds claim to Life itself - HIS life, meaning is it equal to the claims of any other man, as well as the sum of all other claims on the earth. There exists no moral authority anywhere that may validly reduce the status of his claim to one of inferiority, no matter which other life stands in question, or how many.

    Likewise, all other lives taken singly are equal in status to Johnny's. When Johnny's life is placed under immediate threat through no fault of his own (i.e., not as the result of Johnny's criminal behavior), he stands centrally within his right as a living, sentient being to exercise the means of making good on his valid claim to continue his existence. In equal fashion, those who fall under the threat of his choices pursuant to Johnny's decision not to go quietly into that night share equal authority to exercise whatever means they might have at hand to continue their own lives, as well.

    Each party in question holds equal moral authority to act in defense of self. Circumstance in this case is such that equally innocent parties have come into conflict with one other through no faults of their own, each acting validly to preserve their lives pursuant to their individual claims and the valid authority that follows therefrom. If one or all parties are killed in result, nobody is to blame. If Jimmy kills Johnny, he rests innocent of any wrongdoing. If Johnny kills one or more of the innocent bystanders, he stands equally innocent. There is no point of justice to be made there because the threats arose accidentally. The only party guilty of criminal acts is the one who threatened Johnny such that he felt compelled to act to preserve himself, assuming such a cause. But the same holds otherwise as well. If Johnny had a blowout on a mountain road such that he can either fly into a 5000' ravine to his death, or into a crowd of innocents, and he chooses the latter, he is guilty of no crime. Yet, a man on a bulldozer who pulls in front of the oncoming vehicle in order to save said innocents, resulting in Johnny's death, stands equally innocent in his choice to preserve life.

    These are conflicts of interest due to pure accident of circumstance. Each man holds the equal authority to act in preservation of his first property: his life.

    IOW, sometimes $#@! happens and nobody is to blame for the lousy outcomes.

    Now ask yourself what the metes and bounds of this sort of thing might be. If Johnny were to be diagnosed with cancer and a week to live, does he rest within his right to kidnap a child and eat his kidneys, the only known cure for his malady? Is the answer as clear as it may seem on the surface? You decide.
    Last edited by osan; 05-15-2017 at 05:32 AM.
    Through lives and lives shalt thou pay, O' king.


    Be a warrior abhorrent of war, willing to wage it in the face of trespass.

  17. #16

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by osan View Post
    I understand what you are saying here, and the emotional appeal is strong. However, it fails to take into account conflicts of interest.

    A mugger attacks you, seeking to take your property. He has no right to your property, but retains his right to life. You, of course, retain your right to the property in question, which could include your very life. Now what? Your choice is to allow the mugger to do as he pleases, or to defend against him with possible fatality being the result for him, in apparent violation of his right to life. That, of course, is a flawed view of the situation because the mugger is acting criminally. When doing so, one places his own claims (rights) in peril. It may be validly argued one way or the other as to whether a man has a right to act criminally, especially under certain circumstances. For instance, the starving man lost in the wilderness scenario where he stumbles upon a hunting cable, breaks in, and tends to his most basic needs in violation of the property rights of the owner of the edifice.

    Whatever the position on such a matter, the violator nonetheless places himself at risk when committing crimes against others, even when he does so to save his own life.

    For instance, imagine Johnny chooses to commit an act of self-preservation that will result in the death or injury to one or more others. Jimmy sees the pending threat, draws a weapon and shoots Johnny stone dead in order to save the would-be victims. We can assume anything we want about Johnny's knowledge aforethought, it makes no matter - he knew or did not know what his choice would precipitate for the others - he still holds the right to preserve himself, even if it results in the death of others. Why? Because he holds claim to Life itself - HIS life, meaning is it equal to the claims of any other man, as well as the sum of all other claims on the earth. There exists no moral authority anywhere that may validly reduce the status of his claim to one of inferiority, no matter which other life stands in question, or how many.

    Likewise, all other lives taken singly are equal in status to Johnny's. When Johnny's life is placed under immediate threat through no fault of his own (i.e., not as the result of Johnny's criminal behavior), he stands centrally within his right as a living, sentient being to exercise the means of making good on his valid claim to continue his existence. In equal fashion, those who fall under the threat of his choices pursuant to Johnny's decision not to go quietly into that night share equal authority to exercise whatever means they might have at hand to continue their own lives, as well.

    Each party in question holds equal moral authority to act in defense of self. Circumstance in this case is such that equally innocent parties have come into conflict with one other through no faults of their own, each acting validly to preserve their lives pursuant to their individual claims and the valid authority that follows therefrom. If one or all parties are killed in result, nobody is to blame. If Jimmy kills Johnny, he rests innocent of any wrongdoing. If Johnny kills one or more of the innocent bystanders, he stands equally innocent. There is no point of justice to be made there because the threats arose accidentally. The only party guilty of criminal acts is the one who threatened Johnny such that he felt compelled to act to preserve himself, assuming such a cause. But the same holds otherwise as well. If Johnny had a blowout on a mountain road such that he can either fly into a 5000' ravine to his death, or into a crowd of innocents, and he chooses the latter, he is guilty of no crime. Yet, a man on a bulldozer who pulls in front of the oncoming vehicle in order to save said innocents, resulting in Johnny's death, stands equally innocent in his choice to preserve life.

    These are conflicts of interest due to pure accident of circumstance. Each man holds the equal authority to act in preservation of his first property: his life.

    IOW, sometimes $#@! happens and nobody is to blame for the lousy outcomes.

    Now ask yourself what the metes and bounds of this sort of thing might be. If Johnny were to be diagnosed with cancer and a week to live, does he rest within his right to kidnap a child and eat his kidneys, the only known cure for his malady? Is the answer as clear as it may seem on the surface? You decide.
    I'm not sure I understand what you are saying/asking.
    What part of "a right is by definition right" do you disagree with?
    ΟΥ ΓΑΡ ЄCΤΙΝ ЄξΟΥCΙΑ ЄΙ ΜΗ ΥΠΟ ΘЄΟΥ

    "Patriotism should come from loving thy neighbor, not from worshiping graven images" - Ironman77

    "ideas have the potential of being more powerful than any army....The concept of personal sovereignty was pulled screaming from the ether into this reality by the force of men believing in a self evident truth, that men are meant to be free." - The Northbreather

    "People who place their trust in government don't like competition from charities." - Origanalist

  18. #17

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Krugminator2 View Post
    You don't need a hypothetical. Pinochet was justified in ousting Allende and then killing Communist protesters who wanted a Communist revolution. The alternative of Communism is so much worse that doing whatever is necessary to stop it would be justified.

    I don't think Hugo Chavez or Castro need a trial. Assassinating them would have been fine.
    Agreed

    Quote Originally Posted by William Tell View Post
    Well that depends what we're talking about. If you see someone about to be killed in a locked house or building I would advocate rescuing them regardless of the destruction to personal property you cause. Because life is the greatest and most sacred right trumping other property rights. I guess in some ways that might make me a pragmatist to some but to me its a no brainer.
    I would say so.

    But I'm not going to endorse specific greater good government policies. Those never seem to work for the greater good.
    If the minor rights violation wouldn't achieve the desired result (i.e. avoiding the major rights violation), then of course it wouldn't be justifiable. We can't ever know with certainty whether it will work; we have to make a judgment based on the best evidence available. This applies even to your breaking-and-entering scenario - maybe you'll fail to save the person, or even - through some unlikely series of events - end up getting a second person killed. You go ahead and take the risk because you judge that this isn't likely to happen (though you don't know it won't happen).

    Hindsight is 20/20 they say. There are a few problems with this kind of example. 1, outlawing and executing rebels both good and bad has been the policy of most governments since the dawn of time and it doesn't always work. Often it just emboldens their sympathizers. So in theory its easy to say outlawing Bolshevism would have averted the Russian Revolution but in practice we will never know. Especially since trying to carry it out probably would have ended up in some of the minions losing their lives and not the bigwigs like Stalin and Lenin.
    Might work, might not, have to make a judgment based on the evidence at hand - see above comments.

    Yeah, I don't really accept the premise. You say in your scenario there will be collateral damage as if there's nothing else to be done. With any situation like that you do your best to ensure innocents are not hurt. If they are you screwed up. If your wife was going to be near where Hitler was you sure as hell would find a safer time and place, so don't give me this innocents must die or Hitler destroys humanity crap. I don't buy it. Certainly in war and such things that are things that are done that put innocent people at risk. That's why war and violence are so terrible. But even then if moral people are acting they will try to minimize the risk towards innocents.
    What you're espousing is a pragmatist position.

    If you're only trying to minimize the risk of innocent deaths, you're already accepting some risk of them resulting.

    This is in contrast to the view that the risk must be 0% for action to be justified.

    If I thought there was a chance he's innocent I wouldn't support punishing him. So you must have a lower burden of proof for "reasonable doubt". If there is a chance he is innocent I think the justice system if it is true to its name would look for evidence he is innocent and overturn his conviction if any is found. This mindset we have these days that everyone has to be found guilty or not guilty and that's the end of it is sick. It should be about the truth whenever it comes out.
    Reasonable doubt doesn't mean any doubt (i.e. an unreasonable one).

    Suppose Bob is on trial for robbing a bank. The teller testified that he did it. He's on tape doing it. His fingerprints were found on the moneybag.

    There can be no reasonable doubt as to his guilt. However, there are still doubts: e.g. maybe someone has it out for Bob and the tape and fingerprints were forgeries, and the witness bribed? Can't ever know with absolute certainty - which means any time you're convicting anyone, however strong the evidence, there's always a chance that you're condemning an innocent person (and if you accept that risk, you are a pragmatist).
    "The program of liberalism, ...if condensed into a single word, would have to read: property..."

    -Ludwig von Mises

    "Patriotism, not nationalism, should inspire the citizen. The ethnic nationalist who wants a linguistically and culturally uniform nation is akin to the racist who is intolerant toward those who look (and behave) differently. The patriot is a "diversitarian"; he is pleased, indeed proud of the variety within the borders of his country; he looks for loyalty from all citizens. And he looks up and down, not left and right."

    -Erik Maria Ritter von Kuehnelt-Leddihn

    "All the odds are on the man who is, intrinsically, the most devious and mediocre — the man who can most adeptly disperse the notion that his mind is a virtual vacuum. The Presidency tends, year by year, to go to such men. As democracy is perfected, the office represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. We move toward a lofty ideal. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last, and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron."

    -H. L. Mencken

  19. #18

    Default

    Another hypothetical to ponder:

    You're walking down the street and someone pulls out a gun and points it at you.

    Is is justifiable to shoot the person in self-defense? I think we all agree that it is.

    But what if the person wasn't trying to shoot you; what if he was trying to save your life from the knife-wielding maniac behind you that you couldn't see? What if the gun's rubber and the guy mistook you for his buddy on whom he was trying to pull a practical joke? One can imagine any number of other, unlikely scenarios in which, by shooting this apparent threat, you'd actually be killing an innocent person. If you still think self-defense is justifiable, in light of that risk, you're a pragmatist.
    "The program of liberalism, ...if condensed into a single word, would have to read: property..."

    -Ludwig von Mises

    "Patriotism, not nationalism, should inspire the citizen. The ethnic nationalist who wants a linguistically and culturally uniform nation is akin to the racist who is intolerant toward those who look (and behave) differently. The patriot is a "diversitarian"; he is pleased, indeed proud of the variety within the borders of his country; he looks for loyalty from all citizens. And he looks up and down, not left and right."

    -Erik Maria Ritter von Kuehnelt-Leddihn

    "All the odds are on the man who is, intrinsically, the most devious and mediocre — the man who can most adeptly disperse the notion that his mind is a virtual vacuum. The Presidency tends, year by year, to go to such men. As democracy is perfected, the office represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. We move toward a lofty ideal. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last, and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron."

    -H. L. Mencken

  20. #19

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by The Rebel Poet View Post
    I'm not sure I understand what you are saying/asking.
    What part of "a right is by definition right" do you disagree with?
    You said a violation can never be just. I demonstrated that that is not quite the case. Accidents happen - accidents where peoples' rights are violated.
    Through lives and lives shalt thou pay, O' king.


    Be a warrior abhorrent of war, willing to wage it in the face of trespass.

  21. #20

    Default

    What if the elites figured out that owning people was profitable? Result: slavery.

    What if technology advanced and the elites figured out that letting people have more personal freedom was even more profitable, as long as they were in control of the system?

    What if the elites figured out that giving people more liberty gave them a big boost in profits, but made it extremely difficult to stay in control?

    What if they decided to go back to communism/socialism afterall?

    What if the elites decided to flood western civilization with third world immigrants who vote for leftist politicians at nearly double the rate in order to push toward their goal of destroying the very concept of freedom in western civilization?

    What if the elites STOLE money from relatively free and productive members of society, then used that money to bring in third world immigrants in order to destroy the freedom and productivity of western civilization?

    Should we let the elites have their way?
    "He's talkin' to his gut like it's a person!!" -me
    "dumpster diving isn't professional." - angelatc


    "Each of us must choose which course of action we should take: education, conventional political action, or even peaceful civil disobedience to bring about necessary changes. But let it not be said that we did nothing." - Ron Paul

    "Paul said "the wave of the future" is a coalition of anti-authoritarian progressive Democrats and libertarian Republicans in Congress opposed to domestic surveillance, opposed to starting new wars and in favor of ending the so-called War on Drugs."

  22. #21

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by dannno View Post
    What if the elites figured out that owning people was profitable? Result: slavery.

    What if technology advanced and the elites figured out that letting people have more personal freedom was even more profitable, as long as they were in control of the system?

    What if the elites figured out that giving people more liberty gave them a big boost in profits, but made it extremely difficult to stay in control?

    What if they decided to go back to communism/socialism afterall?

    What if the elites decided to flood western civilization with third world immigrants who vote for leftist politicians at nearly double the rate in order to push toward their goal of destroying the very concept of freedom in western civilization?

    What if the elites STOLE money from relatively free and productive members of society, then used that money to bring in third world immigrants in order to destroy the freedom and productivity of western civilization?

    Should we let the elites have their way?
    What if all that has no bearing on the topic of the thread?
    "The program of liberalism, ...if condensed into a single word, would have to read: property..."

    -Ludwig von Mises

    "Patriotism, not nationalism, should inspire the citizen. The ethnic nationalist who wants a linguistically and culturally uniform nation is akin to the racist who is intolerant toward those who look (and behave) differently. The patriot is a "diversitarian"; he is pleased, indeed proud of the variety within the borders of his country; he looks for loyalty from all citizens. And he looks up and down, not left and right."

    -Erik Maria Ritter von Kuehnelt-Leddihn

    "All the odds are on the man who is, intrinsically, the most devious and mediocre — the man who can most adeptly disperse the notion that his mind is a virtual vacuum. The Presidency tends, year by year, to go to such men. As democracy is perfected, the office represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. We move toward a lofty ideal. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last, and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron."

    -H. L. Mencken

  23. #22

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by osan View Post
    You said a violation can never be just. I demonstrated that that is not quite the case. Accidents happen - accidents where peoples' rights are violated.
    An accident is not a violation; it is an accident.

    What part of "a right is by definition right" do you disagree with?
    ΟΥ ΓΑΡ ЄCΤΙΝ ЄξΟΥCΙΑ ЄΙ ΜΗ ΥΠΟ ΘЄΟΥ

    "Patriotism should come from loving thy neighbor, not from worshiping graven images" - Ironman77

    "ideas have the potential of being more powerful than any army....The concept of personal sovereignty was pulled screaming from the ether into this reality by the force of men believing in a self evident truth, that men are meant to be free." - The Northbreather

    "People who place their trust in government don't like competition from charities." - Origanalist

  24. #23

    Default

    A lot of frikkin 'what if's' going on in this thread.

  25. #24

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Origanalist View Post
    A lot of frikkin 'what if's' going on in this thread.
    What's your answer to the poll question?
    "The program of liberalism, ...if condensed into a single word, would have to read: property..."

    -Ludwig von Mises

    "Patriotism, not nationalism, should inspire the citizen. The ethnic nationalist who wants a linguistically and culturally uniform nation is akin to the racist who is intolerant toward those who look (and behave) differently. The patriot is a "diversitarian"; he is pleased, indeed proud of the variety within the borders of his country; he looks for loyalty from all citizens. And he looks up and down, not left and right."

    -Erik Maria Ritter von Kuehnelt-Leddihn

    "All the odds are on the man who is, intrinsically, the most devious and mediocre — the man who can most adeptly disperse the notion that his mind is a virtual vacuum. The Presidency tends, year by year, to go to such men. As democracy is perfected, the office represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. We move toward a lofty ideal. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last, and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron."

    -H. L. Mencken

  26. #25

    Default

    Lifeboat scenarios.

    Rothbard talks about this in Ethics of Liberty. Which is ironic since he contradicts himself in arguing against lifeboat scenarios as a disproof of property rights, but uses a lifeboat scenario himself to argue against pacifism.

    The standard question is if one guy "owns" the lifeboat, is it justifiable to steal it in order to save lives, if he's unwilling to share? He basically says, you can't use these extreme situations to show that capitalism is "unworkable".

    So of course there are situations in which people will violate rights like this. Just like people have a demonstrated preference for which good is more important, they also have pragmatic beliefs about whether a life is worth more than some idiots property claim on a lifeboat.
    What now?

  27. #26

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by wizardwatson View Post
    Lifeboat scenarios.

    Rothbard talks about this in Ethics of Liberty. Which is ironic since he contradicts himself in arguing against lifeboat scenarios as a disproof of property rights, but uses a lifeboat scenario himself to argue against pacifism.

    The standard question is if one guy "owns" the lifeboat, is it justifiable to steal it in order to save lives, if he's unwilling to share? He basically says, you can't use these extreme situations to show that capitalism is "unworkable".

    So of course there are situations in which people will violate rights like this. Just like people have a demonstrated preference for which good is more important, they also have pragmatic beliefs about whether a life is worth more than some idiots property claim on a lifeboat.
    "rights" only exist in context with government.
    All modern revolutions have ended in a reinforcement of the power of the State.
    -Albert Camus

  28. #27

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by otherone View Post
    "rights" only exist in context with government.
    Rights were endowed on man by his Creator. Before there was human government.
    Never attempt to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and annoys the pig.

    Robert Heinlein

    Give a man an inch and right away he thinks he's a ruler

    Groucho Marx

    I love mankind…it’s people I can’t stand.

    Linus, from the Peanuts comic

    You cannot have liberty without morality and morality without faith

    Alexis de Torqueville

    Those who fail to learn from the past are condemned to repeat it.
    Those who learn from the past are condemned to watch everybody else repeat it

    A Zero Hedge comment

  29. #28

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Swordsmyth View Post
    Rights were endowed on man by his Creator. Before there was human government.
    LOLZ!
    A neg rep? Why so butthurt?
    One man on an island. Do "rights" exist?
    How about two? Or is that an "agreement"?
    Who the eff do you go running to when your "rights" are violated? God?
    All modern revolutions have ended in a reinforcement of the power of the State.
    -Albert Camus

  30. #29

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by otherone View Post
    LOLZ!
    A neg rep? Why so butthurt?
    One man on an island. Do "rights" exist?
    How about two? Or is that an "agreement"?
    Who the eff do you go running to when your "rights" are violated? God?
    Rights are the foundation of liberty.
    You it seems would make a good playground bully or tyrant.
    Never attempt to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and annoys the pig.

    Robert Heinlein

    Give a man an inch and right away he thinks he's a ruler

    Groucho Marx

    I love mankind…it’s people I can’t stand.

    Linus, from the Peanuts comic

    You cannot have liberty without morality and morality without faith

    Alexis de Torqueville

    Those who fail to learn from the past are condemned to repeat it.
    Those who learn from the past are condemned to watch everybody else repeat it

    A Zero Hedge comment

  31. #30

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by r3volution 3.0 View Post
    What's your answer to the poll question?
    Maybe.

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