Comments on: Mary Ruwart asks if LP 2008 is a divided house http://thirdpartywatch.com/2008/04/28/mary-ruwart-asks-if-lp-2008-is-a-divided-house/ Sat, 22 Nov 2008 04:03:39 +0000 http://wordpress.org/?v=1.5.1.3 by: Jim Davidson http://thirdpartywatch.com/2008/04/28/mary-ruwart-asks-if-lp-2008-is-a-divided-house/#comment-593395 Mon, 05 May 2008 20:01:33 +0000 http://thirdpartywatch.com/2008/04/28/mary-ruwart-asks-if-lp-2008-is-a-divided-house/#comment-593395 I would like to know why Wayne Allyn Root continues to support the massacre of children in Texas and in Iraq. His views on the Branch Davidian massacre were statist and atrocious at the time, and his views on the butchering of small children for the war effort in Iraq and Afghanistan are among the most foul things I've read. Of course, if these comments misrepresent in any way Mr. Root's views, too bad. I would like to know why Wayne Allyn Root continues to support the massacre of children in Texas and in Iraq. His views on the Branch Davidian massacre were statist and atrocious at the time, and his views on the butchering of small children for the war effort in Iraq and Afghanistan are among the most foul things I’ve read. Of course, if these comments misrepresent in any way Mr. Root’s views, too bad.

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by: Kevin Houston http://thirdpartywatch.com/2008/04/28/mary-ruwart-asks-if-lp-2008-is-a-divided-house/#comment-592889 Mon, 05 May 2008 14:09:00 +0000 http://thirdpartywatch.com/2008/04/28/mary-ruwart-asks-if-lp-2008-is-a-divided-house/#comment-592889 technical suggestions: 1) Post the IP address of each poster along with the post. (Those who wish to remain anonymous - or psuedononymous - can just use a proxy server) 2) Implement a cookie-based ignore filter that will allow each individual to filter out comments from anyone they wish. technical suggestions:

1) Post the IP address of each poster along with the post. (Those who wish to remain anonymous – or psuedononymous – can just use a proxy server)

2) Implement a cookie-based ignore filter that will allow each individual to filter out comments from anyone they wish.

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by: Brian Holtz http://thirdpartywatch.com/2008/04/28/mary-ruwart-asks-if-lp-2008-is-a-divided-house/#comment-586892 Wed, 30 Apr 2008 18:51:35 +0000 http://thirdpartywatch.com/2008/04/28/mary-ruwart-asks-if-lp-2008-is-a-divided-house/#comment-586892 It's trivial to deny making a flip-flop if you only quote one half of it. And of course, still no word from “Murray Rothbard’s intellectual love child" whether she agrees with Dad that parents should have a legal right to starve their own children. Don't worry, Susan; he's dead. He can't hurt you any more. It's safe to answer the question. Now, back to consideration of Susan's red herring. Shane Cory was unavailable, so today's distraction from the examination of radical Libertarian principles is -- wait for it -- Harry Truman. Susan Hogarth wrote: SH) Obviously you think Truman’s decision was right (SH No, I just think it was less wrong than his other available decisions. Please re-read the words "forced choice". That may be the difference between you and me -- you apparently will sit on your hands unless you have some conveniently high amount of evidence that action can be taken that will leave your hands spotless. Your world may be monochrome, but the real world isn't. SH) it is morally wrong to sacrifice others for a goal of your choosing. (SH As I have patiently tried to explain to you by citing the philosophical literature on the Trolley Problem, the red herring you've introduced here concerns an excruciatingly rare thing: a forced choice between the deaths of different sets of innocents. The nature of such a forced choice is that, ex hypothesis, innocents will die no matter what. The only question is how many extra innocent deaths you're willing to watch in order to have clean hands. Thus I repeat your own charge back at you: it is morally wrong to allow extra innocents to die just to keep your hands clean. You earlier in fact said that you might "kill one person rather than let five others be killed if I could imagine no alternative", but then you later called the Trolley Problem "stupid" and said that only an "Evil Genius (TM)" could set one up. Alas, the unique horror of World War II featured more than one Evil Genius. In August 1944 the leader of the Rescue Department of the World Jewish Congress forwarded to the American government a request to bomb Auschwitz, even though it was known that doing so would kill innocent Jews. The request said the "Germans might possibly stop further mass exterminations especially since so little time is left to them". If the available evidence had suggested that such a bombing would save many times more Jews than it would kill by disrupting the Nazi's extermination infrastructure, would you have still opposed it? Alex, the prize for Susan is a doubling of her $100 reward for subscribing to all 30 elements of the No 1st Force Pledge. Doubling zero still yields zero. However, I'm willing to put you on commission. If you can get any of our presidential or LNC candidates to fully endorse the N1F pledge, I'll match my payment to them with a payment to you. Good luck. It’s trivial to deny making a flip-flop if you only quote one half of it.

And of course, still no word from “Murray Rothbard’s intellectual love child” whether she agrees with Dad that parents should have a legal right to starve their own children. Don’t worry, Susan; he’s dead. He can’t hurt you any more. It’s safe to answer the question.

Now, back to consideration of Susan’s red herring. Shane Cory was unavailable, so today’s distraction from the examination of radical Libertarian principles is—wait for it—Harry Truman. Susan Hogarth wrote:
SH) Obviously you think Truman’s decision was right (SH
No, I just think it was less wrong than his other available decisions. Please re-read the words “forced choice”. That may be the difference between you and me—you apparently will sit on your hands unless you have some conveniently high amount of evidence that action can be taken that will leave your hands spotless. Your world may be monochrome, but the real world isn’t.
SH) it is morally wrong to sacrifice others for a goal of your choosing. (SH
As I have patiently tried to explain to you by citing the philosophical literature on the Trolley Problem, the red herring you’ve introduced here concerns an excruciatingly rare thing: a forced choice between the deaths of different sets of innocents. The nature of such a forced choice is that, ex hypothesis, innocents will die no matter what. The only question is how many extra innocent deaths you’re willing to watch in order to have clean hands. Thus I repeat your own charge back at you: it is morally wrong to allow extra innocents to die just to keep your hands clean. You earlier in fact said that you might “kill one person rather than let five others be killed if I could imagine no alternative”, but then you later called the Trolley Problem “stupid” and said that only an “Evil Genius™” could set one up.

Alas, the unique horror of World War II featured more than one Evil Genius. In August 1944 the leader of the Rescue Department of the World Jewish Congress forwarded to the American government a request to bomb Auschwitz, even though it was known that doing so would kill innocent Jews. The request said the “Germans might possibly stop further mass exterminations especially since so little time is left to them”. If the available evidence had suggested that such a bombing would save many times more Jews than it would kill by disrupting the Nazi’s extermination infrastructure, would you have still opposed it?

Alex, the prize for Susan is a doubling of her $100 reward for subscribing to all 30 elements of the No 1st Force Pledge. Doubling zero still yields zero. However, I’m willing to put you on commission. If you can get any of our presidential or LNC candidates to fully endorse the N1F pledge, I’ll match my payment to them with a payment to you. Good luck.

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by: Alex Peak http://thirdpartywatch.com/2008/04/28/mary-ruwart-asks-if-lp-2008-is-a-divided-house/#comment-586886 Wed, 30 Apr 2008 18:45:53 +0000 http://thirdpartywatch.com/2008/04/28/mary-ruwart-asks-if-lp-2008-is-a-divided-house/#comment-586886 "I’ll double that to $200 if you endorse Rothbard’s position that there should be no rules against parents letting their children starve to death." I'll accept $200 if you wish to mail it to me. :) I don't believe any human has any innate obligation to feed other humans, no matter at what age. I also don't believe a parent has any right to prevent me from feeding his/her starving child, nor do I believe any parent that neglectful retains any guardianship of said child. Yours, Alex Peak “I’ll double that to $200 if you endorse Rothbard’s position that there should be no rules against parents letting their children starve to death.”

I’ll accept $200 if you wish to mail it to me. :)

I don’t believe any human has any innate obligation to feed other humans, no matter at what age. I also don’t believe a parent has any right to prevent me from feeding his/her starving child, nor do I believe any parent that neglectful retains any guardianship of said child.

Yours,
Alex Peak

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by: Susan Hogarth http://thirdpartywatch.com/2008/04/28/mary-ruwart-asks-if-lp-2008-is-a-divided-house/#comment-586700 Wed, 30 Apr 2008 16:42:03 +0000 http://thirdpartywatch.com/2008/04/28/mary-ruwart-asks-if-lp-2008-is-a-divided-house/#comment-586700 BH: <i>It is this: the moral agent should do what he thinks is right under the circumstances, and then turn himself in to face possible trial by a jury of his peers.</i> Well, of course. A human as a moral agent should and can only always 'do what he thinks is right'. We are in agreement there. The bigger question, to my mind, is _what do you think is right?_ or _what do you think is wrong?_. Obviously you think Truman's decision was right, and I think it was wrong. You think it was right (if I understand your argument correctly) because an analysis shows you that a greater amount of net aggression would have occurred if he had not taken that action. I beleive _both_ that your attempted calculation is superficial and fundamentally impossible, _and_ that it is morally wrong to sacrifice others for a goal of your choosing. <i>Only a month later, you completely flip-flopped when you published your Radical Caucus Key Points document saying: “there is no essential separation between rights and utilitarianism – that is, the morally correct choice will always yield the most benefit for the greatest number of people.”</i> This is neither a flip nor a flop. I maintain that doing what is right (in the context of this discussion: not aggressing against others) is _by the nature of things_ the best utilitarian solution as well as the morally correct one. BH:

It is this: the moral agent should do what he thinks is right under the circumstances, and then turn himself in to face possible trial by a jury of his peers.

Well, of course. A human as a moral agent should and can only always ‘do what he thinks is right’. We are in agreement there. The bigger question, to my mind, is what do you think is right? or what do you think is wrong?. Obviously you think Truman’s decision was right, and I think it was wrong. You think it was right (if I understand your argument correctly) because an analysis shows you that a greater amount of net aggression would have occurred if he had not taken that action. I beleive both that your attempted calculation is superficial and fundamentally impossible, and that it is morally wrong to sacrifice others for a goal of your choosing.

Only a month later, you completely flip-flopped when you published your Radical Caucus Key Points document saying: “there is no essential separation between rights and utilitarianism – that is, the morally correct choice will always yield the most benefit for the greatest number of people.”

This is neither a flip nor a flop. I maintain that doing what is right (in the context of this discussion: not aggressing against others) is by the nature of things the best utilitarian solution as well as the morally correct one.

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by: Brian Holtz http://thirdpartywatch.com/2008/04/28/mary-ruwart-asks-if-lp-2008-is-a-divided-house/#comment-586585 Wed, 30 Apr 2008 15:30:59 +0000 http://thirdpartywatch.com/2008/04/28/mary-ruwart-asks-if-lp-2008-is-a-divided-house/#comment-586585 Susan, I wrote about "spinal reflexes and phantom limbs" on TPW yesterday before you wrote that "the LP needs to grow a spine". Anyone who's followed any of our past discussions can decide for himself whether I'm under any illusion that you are an attentive reader of my arguments against LP radicalism. If you don't like your metaphors ricocheting back at you, well, you should pay more attention to where you aim them. It's understandable why you find it "annoying" to reveal whether you consider the fundamental principle of libertarianism to be 1) absolute abstention from force initiation vs. 2) actively opposing and minimizing force initiation. After all, it's only the core argument I've been making for the last three years against deontological radicals like you. I'll drop the pretense that I don't know which of these two positions you take, if you drop the pretense that you haven't already taken it. (You can also drop the pretense that you don't know what words like "consequentialist" and "deontological" mean. So much for the Radical Caucus mission of "educating LP members about the Party's core principles". Educator, educate thyself.) You told us here on March 4 that you are not SH) an omniscient being who could See All and Know All and understand perfectly the interplay between cause-and-effect perfectly – oh, and who could predict how individual humans with their supposedly free will would react as well. [...] I’m afraid my Magic 8 Ball isn’t good enough for that sort of moral calculus, so I’ll have to content myself with trying not to aggress at all. [...] I can only strive to add a “+1” to the non-aggressors column, and convince others to join me. (SH Only a month later, you completely flip-flopped when you published your Radical Caucus Key Points document saying: "there is no essential separation between rights and utilitarianism - that is, the morally correct choice will always yield the most benefit for the greatest number of people." (Hint: for the purposes of this discussion, you can treat "utilitarianism" and "consequentialism" as synonyms.) It seems that you are a fair-weather utilitarian, and I'm your own personal rain cloud. :-) Interestingly, the ellipses in your words above were precisely the same red-herring smear you wheel out against me now: the atomic bombing of Hiroshima. I'll just cut and paste below my rebuttal from last year that you've never attempted to answer, but first some observations. 1) It's, um, interesting for your Key Points document to say that "hiding or abandoning our principled positions is ineffective", and then desperately grasp for any excuse for you, "Murray Rothbard's intellectual love child", not to answer whether you agree with Rothbard that parents should have a legal right to starve their own children. Do you "hold high the banner" of principle, or not? 2) My position is that unique historical circumstances created a forced choice to attack "a major supply and logistics base for a militarized society completely mobilized in support of a war of territorial conquest and racist genocide". Your characterization of "deliberate slaughter" of "cities full of civilians" is inaccurate and unfair -- but par for the TPW course these days. 3) Truman's was a forced choice in 1945 under a unique one-time set of historical circumstances that have never been, and will never be, repeated. By contrast, somewhere in America an abusive parent subjects a child to mortal neglect probably every day. As a declared wanna-be Advertising and Publications Review Committee censor, you either have the spine to tell delegates where you stand on this topic, or you don't. I'm sure we're all quite impressed that you have the spine to oppose the "deliberate slaughter" of "cities full of civilians". 4) Invoking my position on Hiroshima is a clumsy red herring, as I am not running for office in Denver, and so my personal positions and judgments do not need delegate scrutiny -- even though I'm flattered about any I receive, and always happy to answer it. I predict that you'll still be leaning on this Hiroshima red herring all the way through Denver, and will very likely feature it in printed handouts that attack me personally as weak substitute for criticizing the Platform Committee's proposal. If you do, then I will get to brag about how well my "Crystal Ball" works. ------------------ My position on Hiroshima is the same as my position on the Trolley Problem or the ticking-nuclear-terrorist-time-bomb or any other forced-choice lifeboat thought experiment. It is this: the moral agent should do what he thinks is right under the circumstances, and then turn himself in to face possible trial by a jury of his peers. I absolutely oppose any legislation authorizing anyone, especially agents of the State, to have legal carte blanche to decide to kill one innocent in order to save even one billion innocents. That is a question for a jury, not for a legislature or an executive. I repeat the argument that I would make to Truman's jury: The citizens of Hiroshima were living in a major supply and logistics base for a militarized society completely mobilized in support of a war of territorial conquest and racist genocide. In addition to all the Japanese troops and civilians whose lives were saved by not having to invade the imperial homeland, the bombing also stopped the deaths of over 100,000 Asian noncombatants each month living under Japanese conquest -- as well as the lives of hundreds of allied prisoners under orders to be executed upon invasion. The atomic bombings killed about 200K Japanese. The projected fatalities for invading Japan included hundreds of thousands of Americans, and over a million Japanese. Leaving Japan alone would have been better for people in North Carolina, maybe -- at least those whose primary concern is their clean hands. Not so good, however, for the hundreds of thousands of slave laborers controlled by the Japanese, or the tens of thousands of "comfort women" abducted from Korea and China for use in Japanese army brothels. Not so good, especially, for the roughly 100K Asian non-combatants who were dying each month under Japanese military occupation, joining the six to ten million Asians that had already been slaughtered by Japanese aggression. See the Wikipedia article Japanese_war_crimes if you can stomach further details. Susan, I wrote about “spinal reflexes and phantom limbs” on TPW yesterday before you wrote that “the LP needs to grow a spine”. Anyone who’s followed any of our past discussions can decide for himself whether I’m under any illusion that you are an attentive reader of my arguments against LP radicalism. If you don’t like your metaphors ricocheting back at you, well, you should pay more attention to where you aim them.

It’s understandable why you find it “annoying” to reveal whether you consider the fundamental principle of libertarianism to be 1) absolute abstention from force initiation vs. 2) actively opposing and minimizing force initiation. After all, it’s only the core argument I’ve been making for the last three years against deontological radicals like you. I’ll drop the pretense that I don’t know which of these two positions you take, if you drop the pretense that you haven’t already taken it. (You can also drop the pretense that you don’t know what words like “consequentialist” and “deontological” mean. So much for the Radical Caucus mission of “educating LP members about the Party’s core principles”. Educator, educate thyself.) You told us here on March 4 that you are not

SH) an omniscient being who could See All and Know All and understand perfectly the interplay between cause-and-effect perfectly – oh, and who could predict how individual humans with their supposedly free will would react as well. [...] I’m afraid my Magic 8 Ball isn’t good enough for that sort of moral calculus, so I’ll have to content myself with trying not to aggress at all. [...] I can only strive to add a “+1” to the non-aggressors column, and convince others to join me. (SH

Only a month later, you completely flip-flopped when you published your Radical Caucus Key Points document saying: “there is no essential separation between rights and utilitarianism – that is, the morally correct choice will always yield the most benefit for the greatest number of people.” (Hint: for the purposes of this discussion, you can treat “utilitarianism” and “consequentialism” as synonyms.) It seems that you are a fair-weather utilitarian, and I’m your own personal rain cloud. :-)

Interestingly, the ellipses in your words above were precisely the same red-herring smear you wheel out against me now: the atomic bombing of Hiroshima. I’ll just cut and paste below my rebuttal from last year that you’ve never attempted to answer, but first some observations.

1) It’s, um, interesting for your Key Points document to say that “hiding or abandoning our principled positions is ineffective”, and then desperately grasp for any excuse for you, “Murray Rothbard’s intellectual love child”, not to answer whether you agree with Rothbard that parents should have a legal right to starve their own children. Do you “hold high the banner” of principle, or not?

2) My position is that unique historical circumstances created a forced choice to attack “a major supply and logistics base for a militarized society completely mobilized in support of a war of territorial conquest and racist genocide”. Your characterization of “deliberate slaughter” of “cities full of civilians” is inaccurate and unfair—but par for the TPW course these days.

3) Truman’s was a forced choice in 1945 under a unique one-time set of historical circumstances that have never been, and will never be, repeated. By contrast, somewhere in America an abusive parent subjects a child to mortal neglect probably every day. As a declared wanna-be Advertising and Publications Review Committee censor, you either have the spine to tell delegates where you stand on this topic, or you don’t. I’m sure we’re all quite impressed that you have the spine to oppose the “deliberate slaughter” of “cities full of civilians”.

4) Invoking my position on Hiroshima is a clumsy red herring, as I am not running for office in Denver, and so my personal positions and judgments do not need delegate scrutiny—even though I’m flattered about any I receive, and always happy to answer it. I predict that you’ll still be leaning on this Hiroshima red herring all the way through Denver, and will very likely feature it in printed handouts that attack me personally as weak substitute for criticizing the Platform Committee’s proposal. If you do, then I will get to brag about how well my “Crystal Ball” works.
—————————
My position on Hiroshima is the same as my position on the Trolley Problem or the ticking-nuclear-terrorist-time-bomb or any other forced-choice lifeboat thought experiment. It is this: the moral agent should do what he thinks is right under the circumstances, and then turn himself in to face possible trial by a jury of his peers. I absolutely oppose any legislation authorizing anyone, especially agents of the State, to have legal carte blanche to decide to kill one innocent in order to save even one billion innocents. That is a question for a jury, not for a legislature or an executive.

I repeat the argument that I would make to Truman’s jury:

The citizens of Hiroshima were living in a major supply and logistics base for a militarized society completely mobilized in support of a war of territorial conquest and racist genocide. In addition to all the Japanese troops and civilians whose lives were saved by not having to invade the imperial homeland, the bombing also stopped the deaths of over 100,000 Asian noncombatants each month living under Japanese conquest—as well as the lives of hundreds of allied prisoners under orders to be executed upon invasion. The atomic bombings killed about 200K Japanese. The projected fatalities for invading Japan included hundreds of thousands of Americans, and over a million Japanese. Leaving Japan alone would have been better for people in North Carolina, maybe—at least those whose primary concern is their clean hands. Not so good, however, for the hundreds of thousands of slave laborers controlled by the Japanese, or the tens of thousands of “comfort women” abducted from Korea and China for use in Japanese army brothels. Not so good, especially, for the roughly 100K Asian non-combatants who were dying each month under Japanese military occupation, joining the six to ten million Asians that had already been slaughtered by Japanese aggression. See the Wikipedia article Japanese_war_crimes if you can stomach further details.

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by: Susan Hogarth http://thirdpartywatch.com/2008/04/28/mary-ruwart-asks-if-lp-2008-is-a-divided-house/#comment-586281 Wed, 30 Apr 2008 11:05:06 +0000 http://thirdpartywatch.com/2008/04/28/mary-ruwart-asks-if-lp-2008-is-a-divided-house/#comment-586281 <i>I’m also glad to see you whole-heartedly subscribe to my “spinal reflex” metaphor.</i> What? Your metaphor was that the platform is a straitjacket. *I* offered the metaphor of the platform as a backbone. Suddenly that's me 'whole-heartedly subscribing' to something you didn't say - or said elsewhere and imagined I've read breathlessly, as if anyone could stand to read more than two paragraphs in a row of your endless bilge. Jeezus, you're annoying. Why don't you go help Andrew Davis write a press release or something? I’m also glad to see you whole-heartedly subscribe to my “spinal reflex” metaphor.

What? Your metaphor was that the platform is a straitjacket. I offered the metaphor of the platform as a backbone. Suddenly that’s me ‘whole-heartedly subscribing’ to something you didn’t say – or said elsewhere and imagined I’ve read breathlessly, as if anyone could stand to read more than two paragraphs in a row of your endless bilge.

Jeezus, you’re annoying. Why don’t you go help Andrew Davis write a press release or something?

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by: Susan Hogarth http://thirdpartywatch.com/2008/04/28/mary-ruwart-asks-if-lp-2008-is-a-divided-house/#comment-586275 Wed, 30 Apr 2008 10:58:00 +0000 http://thirdpartywatch.com/2008/04/28/mary-ruwart-asks-if-lp-2008-is-a-divided-house/#comment-586275 <i>I’ll double that to $200 if you endorse Rothbard’s position that there should be no rules against parents letting their children starve to death.</i> I'm disinclined to get into an ethical pissing contest with a man who thinks the deliberate slaughter of entire cities full of civilians is an acceptable way to reduce aggression in the world. It's just too bizarre for me. I’ll double that to $200 if you endorse Rothbard’s position that there should be no rules against parents letting their children starve to death.

I’m disinclined to get into an ethical pissing contest with a man who thinks the deliberate slaughter of entire cities full of civilians is an acceptable way to reduce aggression in the world. It’s just too bizarre for me.

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by: Susan Hogarth http://thirdpartywatch.com/2008/04/28/mary-ruwart-asks-if-lp-2008-is-a-divided-house/#comment-586263 Wed, 30 Apr 2008 10:51:21 +0000 http://thirdpartywatch.com/2008/04/28/mary-ruwart-asks-if-lp-2008-is-a-divided-house/#comment-586263 <i>Susan, you didn’t quite answer whether your fundamental principle is 1) that force initiation should be absolutely abstained from, or 2) that force initiation should be opposed and minimized. It’s news to me that you’re now a consequentialist anarchist.</i> Brian, I suspect no one ever 'quite answers' a question to your satisfaction until they've said what you want them to say, so I guess you're just going to have to be satisfied with continuing to make up phrases like 'consequentialist anarchist' and ascribe them to me. If anyone else is in doubt about my position on the initiation of force, I'd like to know. Susan, you didn’t quite answer whether your fundamental principle is 1) that force initiation should be absolutely abstained from, or 2) that force initiation should be opposed and minimized. It’s news to me that you’re now a consequentialist anarchist.

Brian, I suspect no one ever ‘quite answers’ a question to your satisfaction until they’ve said what you want them to say, so I guess you’re just going to have to be satisfied with continuing to make up phrases like ‘consequentialist anarchist’ and ascribe them to me.

If anyone else is in doubt about my position on the initiation of force, I’d like to know.

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by: Steve Newton http://thirdpartywatch.com/2008/04/28/mary-ruwart-asks-if-lp-2008-is-a-divided-house/#comment-585748 Wed, 30 Apr 2008 02:33:56 +0000 http://thirdpartywatch.com/2008/04/28/mary-ruwart-asks-if-lp-2008-is-a-divided-house/#comment-585748 "Nothing can protect the LP from the delegates themselves." Somebody (maybe a lot of people) seems to have forgotten who actually constitutes the party. “Nothing can protect the LP from the delegates themselves.”

Somebody (maybe a lot of people) seems to have forgotten who actually constitutes the party.

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by: Brian Holtz http://thirdpartywatch.com/2008/04/28/mary-ruwart-asks-if-lp-2008-is-a-divided-house/#comment-585726 Wed, 30 Apr 2008 02:10:08 +0000 http://thirdpartywatch.com/2008/04/28/mary-ruwart-asks-if-lp-2008-is-a-divided-house/#comment-585726 Steve LaBianca asked "Tell me how ANY existence of the state would NOT violate the initiation of force principle?" That depends on what you mean by the "initiation of force principle". The existence of the state does not violate what I call the Anti-Aggression Principle. I agree with Roy Childs contra Ayn Rand that it would violate the Zero Aggression Principle. For details, see the links near the bottom of http://libertarianmajority.net/. There, I answered your question. Now, I asked you eight questions about various kinds of force initiation, and about whether you acknowledge any principled distinction between socialism and minarchism. I'm perfectly happy for you to ignore them and call them "B.S", because I guarantee you that this discussion will end with you ignoring a lengthy posting of mine (like my previous one). That's just how I roll. Given how busy I am, I'm fine with that happening sooner rather than later. If you define "statist" as "not an anarchist", then congratulations, you've convicted me of the crime of statism. Further, if you define the Non-Aggression Principle as caring more about abstaining from force initiation than about opposing and minimizing it, then congratulations again, you've convicted me of upholding a principle that I consider to be superior too -- and more libertarian than -- your corresponding principle. Whether or not you think I qualify as libertarian, I still think you qualify, and I don't need to waste energy trying to make the LP's fundamental texts say that I'm more libertarian than thou. I've got a nanny state to dismantle. Don't you? Susan, you didn't quite answer whether your fundamental principle is 1) that force initiation should be absolutely abstained from, or 2) that force initiation should be opposed and minimized. It's news to me that you're now a consequentialist anarchist. In the past you've given a perfect imitation of a vehemently deontological anarchist, saying that we cannot know what policies will lead to the least amount of force initiation, and so the best we can do is not initiate force ourselves. I'm glad to hear it if you apparently no longer find that position defensible. :-) I'm also glad to see you whole-heartedly subscribe to my "spinal reflex" metaphor. You say the LP needs to grow a spine, but I say it needs to start thinking more with its brain, and less with the brain stem that the Rockbardians left behind. What I'd like to know now is: do you yet have enough "spine" to tell the delegates how many of the 30 elements of the <a href="http://libertarianmajority.net/no-1st-force-pledge" rel="nofollow">No 1st Force Pledge</a> you endorse? I'm stilling willing to contribute $100 to your Radical Caucus if you're hardcore enough to endorse them all. And I'll double that to $200 if you endorse Rothbard's position that there should be no rules against parents letting their children starve to death. My cash is yours if you have enough spine here. Steve Newton, it's not really disputable whether the rules say that LP members delegate ultimate power to their delegates. The only limit on that power are the rules about proper notice for certain things, but anyone who could hypnotize enough NatCon delegates can essentially do anything to the LP that she wishes. The Bylaws Committee is trying to foreclose the possibility of a hostile takeover by having the Judicial Committee members serve longer and staggered terms, so that a single convention can't elect a quisling JudCom. But that only protects the LP from the officers the delegates elect. Nothing can protect the LP from the delegates themselves. Steve LaBianca asked “Tell me how ANY existence of the state would NOT violate the initiation of force principle?”

That depends on what you mean by the “initiation of force principle”. The existence of the state does not violate what I call the Anti-Aggression Principle. I agree with Roy Childs contra Ayn Rand that it would violate the Zero Aggression Principle. For details, see the links near the bottom of http://libertarianmajority.net/.

There, I answered your question. Now, I asked you eight questions about various kinds of force initiation, and about whether you acknowledge any principled distinction between socialism and minarchism. I’m perfectly happy for you to ignore them and call them “B.S”, because I guarantee you that this discussion will end with you ignoring a lengthy posting of mine (like my previous one). That’s just how I roll. Given how busy I am, I’m fine with that happening sooner rather than later.

If you define “statist” as “not an anarchist”, then congratulations, you’ve convicted me of the crime of statism. Further, if you define the Non-Aggression Principle as caring more about abstaining from force initiation than about opposing and minimizing it, then congratulations again, you’ve convicted me of upholding a principle that I consider to be superior too—and more libertarian than—your corresponding principle. Whether or not you think I qualify as libertarian, I still think you qualify, and I don’t need to waste energy trying to make the LP’s fundamental texts say that I’m more libertarian than thou. I’ve got a nanny state to dismantle. Don’t you?

Susan, you didn’t quite answer whether your fundamental principle is 1) that force initiation should be absolutely abstained from, or 2) that force initiation should be opposed and minimized. It’s news to me that you’re now a consequentialist anarchist. In the past you’ve given a perfect imitation of a vehemently deontological anarchist, saying that we cannot know what policies will lead to the least amount of force initiation, and so the best we can do is not initiate force ourselves. I’m glad to hear it if you apparently no longer find that position defensible. :-)

I’m also glad to see you whole-heartedly subscribe to my “spinal reflex” metaphor. You say the LP needs to grow a spine, but I say it needs to start thinking more with its brain, and less with the brain stem that the Rockbardians left behind. What I’d like to know now is: do you yet have enough “spine” to tell the delegates how many of the 30 elements of the No 1st Force Pledge you endorse? I’m stilling willing to contribute $100 to your Radical Caucus if you’re hardcore enough to endorse them all. And I’ll double that to $200 if you endorse Rothbard’s position that there should be no rules against parents letting their children starve to death. My cash is yours if you have enough spine here.

Steve Newton, it’s not really disputable whether the rules say that LP members delegate ultimate power to their delegates. The only limit on that power are the rules about proper notice for certain things, but anyone who could hypnotize enough NatCon delegates can essentially do anything to the LP that she wishes. The Bylaws Committee is trying to foreclose the possibility of a hostile takeover by having the Judicial Committee members serve longer and staggered terms, so that a single convention can’t elect a quisling JudCom. But that only protects the LP from the officers the delegates elect. Nothing can protect the LP from the delegates themselves.

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by: Libertarian Joseph http://thirdpartywatch.com/2008/04/28/mary-ruwart-asks-if-lp-2008-is-a-divided-house/#comment-585212 Tue, 29 Apr 2008 20:23:17 +0000 http://thirdpartywatch.com/2008/04/28/mary-ruwart-asks-if-lp-2008-is-a-divided-house/#comment-585212 Feminazi. ;) Feminazi. ;)

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by: Susan Hogarth http://thirdpartywatch.com/2008/04/28/mary-ruwart-asks-if-lp-2008-is-a-divided-house/#comment-585102 Tue, 29 Apr 2008 19:10:28 +0000 http://thirdpartywatch.com/2008/04/28/mary-ruwart-asks-if-lp-2008-is-a-divided-house/#comment-585102 Hlotz writes: <i>Reformers simply believe that this job is hindered, not helped, if the Platform is a straightjacket requiring all of us to defend personal secession, privatizing every street, unlimited immigration, no laws against consensual child prostitution, etc.</i> Interesting analogy. I see the platform as a backbone rather than a straightjacket. I think of each plank as a vertebra. A candidate is free to move in any direction outward from the platform, but he has it to support him. Or in simpler terms: the LP needs to grow a spine :) Hlotz writes:

Reformers simply believe that this job is hindered, not helped, if the Platform is a straightjacket requiring all of us to defend personal secession, privatizing every street, unlimited immigration, no laws against consensual child prostitution, etc.

Interesting analogy. I see the platform as a backbone rather than a straightjacket. I think of each plank as a vertebra. A candidate is free to move in any direction outward from the platform, but he has it to support him.

Or in simpler terms: the LP needs to grow a spine :)

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by: Susan Hogarth http://thirdpartywatch.com/2008/04/28/mary-ruwart-asks-if-lp-2008-is-a-divided-house/#comment-585095 Tue, 29 Apr 2008 19:05:52 +0000 http://thirdpartywatch.com/2008/04/28/mary-ruwart-asks-if-lp-2008-is-a-divided-house/#comment-585095 "So answer this: do you or do you not instead believe that the fundamental principle of libertarian political theory is that force initiation should be abstained from, regardless of the consequences?" Nothing should be done 'regardless of the consequences'. It is _precisely_ a regard for consequences which will lead a libertarian to the conclusion that a person or group of people should not aggress against another person or group. “So answer this: do you or do you not instead believe that the fundamental principle of libertarian political theory is that force initiation should be abstained from, regardless of the consequences?”

Nothing should be done ‘regardless of the consequences’. It is precisely a regard for consequences which will lead a libertarian to the conclusion that a person or group of people should not aggress against another person or group.

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by: Libertarian Joseph http://thirdpartywatch.com/2008/04/28/mary-ruwart-asks-if-lp-2008-is-a-divided-house/#comment-585008 Tue, 29 Apr 2008 18:05:35 +0000 http://thirdpartywatch.com/2008/04/28/mary-ruwart-asks-if-lp-2008-is-a-divided-house/#comment-585008 Mary Ruwart's brain is a "divided house" IMO. :) Mary Ruwart’s brain is a “divided house” IMO. :)

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