Levin on why liberalism is inherently immoral

Levin explains why he believes liberalism, whether it manifests itself in a Republican or Democrat, is inherently immoral.



Enjoy!

Comment Policy: Please read our comment policy before making a comment. In short, please be respectful of others and do not engage in personal attacks. Otherwise we will revoke your comment privileges.

To our ad-free users: I apologize for the ad below but unfortunately DISQUS requires this ad in order to use their commenting system and I cannot make it go away.

37 thoughts on “Levin on why liberalism is inherently immoral

  1. Mr Levin you talk about immoral? Well how about the trillions and trillions of dollars of American peoples money by a Republican administration that has been used on a phoney war and tax breaks for the rich enriching the deficit. Jeez Mr. Levin please get you head out of your ass with your obnoxious rhetoric over and over. Believe me people are sick of it. You don’t have the guts to get behind our President and support him in any way. You just day by day prove to America that you are a part of the party of NO. The party that doesn’t want America to progress. If you want things to be the old way move your stinking ass to a third world country and stay there…………..

  2. Never mind. Doug Ross supplied a link in a previous comment which wasn’t showing when I typed in. Thanks.

  3. Levin is right!! Here in Hungary, the new government took 200 billion forints from the bank calling it a “bank tax”. The banks made profits and followed the rules!! Every other company is broke and the new admin. needs to find more money. They are steeling in other ways also to add more benefits to welfare recipients! It goes on and on and many here say it’s great because the banks have lots of money! What?! So how are the banks going to make up those losses… You can see where I’m going with this!!!!!!!!

  4. This is a rather ironic statement by Levin. He basically destroyed the Bush doctrine and foreign policy that he’s been advocating for, for years. It obviously requires an immoral income tax to sustain it. Unless he’s saying the ends justify the immoral means?

    The same principles that apply to individuals also apply to the government. You and I, as individuals cannot delegate a right that we do not have to someone else. I can’t steal, so neither should the government. All taxes should be voluntary or based on usage. There should at least be a small sales tax, preferred over an income tax. Because you can avoid a sales tax by not buying certain items.

    Let’s say a gang member comes to your door and demands that you pay him a fee for a gang war he’s involved in. He swears the war is on your behalf and that he was elected the leader of your area and he’s got a right to 20% of YOUR money because he needs weapons and resources in order to continue protecting you.

    What do you do?

    In today’s world, we’re forced to pay for the immoral pursuits of the majority through the mobsters of government. Government force is no different than a gang or a mobster. Why do the Feds go after monopolies and gangs? Because they can be the only ones.

    Why do progressives want cops to have guns but not the individual? Why do some rail against the violence of weapons, but then elect madmen and give them unlimited money and weapons to raise MASSIVE armies and wage wars of aggression? Because they make the false assumption that government having weapons, will yield better results than individuals having them.

    Maybe 2012 is not the end of the world, but perhaps it is the end of the state. A time when the world (fiat currency) system will end.

    Imagine for a second if all world governments collapse. What would we truly lose? Would we care a wit about the people of Iran, or fear them without their leader? Would Iran be threatened or would Iran worry about us? Would North Korea be a threat to South? Or would they peacefully co-exist? All the debt would be gone and we could all start over. This is where I see the brilliance in John Lennon’s song, Imagine. When you think about it the only thing keeping us from “world peace”, is government.

    At what point will man stop trying to perfect itself through government, and instead trust in ourselves and freedom? Glad to hear Levin just had this epiphany… If only he’d stick to it consistently.

  5. Death and Taxes. Policemen, firemen, military all have to be paid. I’d like it all to be in ‘sales’ tax too, and not taxing us when we earn money, or because we own something.

    Maybe someday we will pay off all entitlements and get back to ‘normal’. And maybe I’ll win the lottery.

    My first grip with liberalism, as in progressivism, socialism, or any other name it’s called, is that their socialism only works if ‘everybody’s on board.’ In other words, loss of individual liberty. I’m pretty much a liberty or death, live free or die, kind of guy.

    I believe, second maybe only to the word of God, that the most important thing I can pass on to my children is liberty.

  6. Right on, Levin! Taxation is theft. The income tax and the inflation tax being the worst examples of our immoral society. One directly takes your property, the other devalues your property to make it worth less.

    In a just world, politicians would be sent to prison for what would be crimes if any of us did them.

  7. Here is a very good article to follow up on what Mark said.
    It’s worth reading.HAVE THEY BEEN DEFEATED, OR HAVE THEY DEFEATED US? About the Tucson Massacre, the response of the left and reaction to Obama’s speech.
    http://www.thepostemail.com/2011/01/22/mourning-in-america/
    Here is an excerpt:

    “The King’s Speech
    As for Mr. Obama’s speech, of course the left touted it. They are desperate to regain the momentum they lost—I think forever—on November 2nd, but their praise sounded more like relief to me. The conservatives who joined in the touting reminded me of the group-think crowd who told the naked emperor that his clothes were oh-so beautiful.” FOX ALL Stars and John McCain(Mr. Maverick)come to mind.

  8. “Robbery is immoral,” you’re **** right, Mr. Levin, and that applies 100% to all taxation, be it state, federal, or municipality. You sounded like you were channeling Murray Rothbard and other Libertarian or Anarchist thinkers.

    My key question to you is, do you believe in taxation to fund defense? To fund cops? To fund infrastructure?

    If the answer to those questions is anything but “no,” then you are as guilty of advocating theft as more extreme Statists.

    Do you believe voting in either a direct referendum on services/goods or on tickets of services/goods (representatives) to be imposed on others? If the answer is yes, then your belief is as aggressively immoral as the “liberals.” Those services/goods are to be provided somehow, if it is the state it requires the confiscation and redirecting of other people’s wealth or labor. If those goods/services are to be provided directly by private individuals at the direction of the referendum then the coercion is chronologically linked to the mob redirection/repurposing of OTHER PEOPLE’S products of their own labor or the labor itself.

    It’s immoral, we agree, Mark. I’m curious if you apply that consistently across the board.

      1. Occasionally. His style tends to grate on me with the combination of the name-calling, yelling, and his voice. I have read his book, though.

        If he has denounced taxation in general, as opposed to the standard Conservative line on taxation (method & amount), even when it comes to funding “defense” or infrastructure then I will withdraw my comment.

        I would love for someone with a platform as big as his to adopt that position, so if that is the case, please point me to a clip/transcript of it. Even the date of his show would suffice, since he has his shows archived on the internet with free access.

        1. I would love for you to call in to Mark’s show some night so I could hear him tear you a new ass*hole. Now, THAT would be fun. He only took calls from liberals for most of Friday’s show, so maybe some night he’ll ask for libertarians to call in. Keep hitting REDIAL, maybe you’ll make it through and explain to Mark Levin your theory of national taxation.

          1. It’s not “theory,” it is a simple fact if one accepts the premise that aggression is not justified.

            I have done nothing but take his statement about immorality to its proper logical conclusions. Take it up with your “great one” if you don’t like he consistent application of his own words.

          2. lol what was the point of the Astrix? It makes me think you maybe meant whole instead of hole which is kind of funny by it’s self. And a brand new train of thought on that insult as in a complete a** or an a**whole.

            The Monster does a great Levin-esque take down of his philosophy below. I don’t actually think he rises to the level of being an a**hole myself. I just think he’s looking for something that functions better than Conservatism because it’s been failing for so long. I’d argue it’s failing because few in politics actually practice it.

            1. Except he didn’t take down anything, all he did was assert tired old Minarchist canards and not address anything beyond the first paragraph my lengthy response to him. Then that is followed with re-assertions of matters I already explained to him rather than dispute that the examples and hypothetical situations presented.

              In short, all it was was a handful of cliches and statements operating on the stubborn assumption that involuntary government is an inevitable necessary evil.

              Your response to him below seems to evidence that you didn’t actually read the full point-by-point response to him, despite your claim, or glossed over without actually thinking about it.

              That is also not mentioning the fact that he implicitly agreed that my position is more consistent, though, in his opinion impractical. He abandons consistent application of the Libertarian ethics in all realms of politics and policy for what he perceives as being realistic.

              What I’m looking for is for a Conservative talking head to take statements like Levin’s to their logical conclusions and either stand on that or acknowledge that their taxation complaints are arbitrary.

              1. How and who maintains the roads? Does each road turn into a toll road? Where every 5 miles or so you’re depositing money for it’s use. If there’s an accident on the road who decides who’s to blame or at fault. What if a band of men with guns decides to start imposing their own tolls on the roads? How many people lose their possessions or life before something is done about it? Who does something about it? How are those people compensated for lose of life or merchandise and who decides? If there is any recourse, it will be done by those that have the most force to exert their opinion as correct. And like that it’s not about just pure freedom it’s about authoritarian control.

                What he was getting at is that even if you decide to take away all government there will be some form of rule that pops up. Which inevitably, since we’re taking the republic off the table, becomes authoritarian rule.

                You seem to think that by removing government that everyone will suddenly get along and work peacefully together. I’d suggest that no where in history is that shown. In fact quite the opposite is the case. That’s why I think what you’re talking about is a utopia and a somewhat dangerous idea. Limited government is best because government is a necessary evil.

                Fine taxation is arbitrary who said it wasn’t. We just think that taxation should be at the smaller end of the percentage spectrum. If we removed all the things that we pay taxes for that aren’t called out for in the Constitution we would see our taxes drop significantly. As I understand it the Federal Government doesn’t have the authority to even tax us. That’s the states responsibility. So if we actually follow the Constitution like it was set out by the founding fathers we’d be a lot better off. That’s what we’re trying to achieve. 234 years we’ve been successful. We’ve wandered far from the constitutional path over time. Let’s start running back to the correct path and it’ll be another 234 years of success.

                1. Your treasured republic is already authoritarian rule, chief. If you don’t believe me, defy your utopian little republic by an action that doesn’t actually have any victims.

                  “What he was getting at. . .” Yes, and I already made the distinction between Voluntaryism as societal organization and having a STATE (coercive, involuntary government). This is why I doubt you read my posts at all, and only his.

                  “You seem to think. . .get along. . .peacefully” Wrong, again, I’ve already said this TO YOU elsewhere. There will always be some degree of fraud and aggression in any human population. In a society with a State, you have INSTITUTIONALIZED aggression and the apparatus for sociopaths like Stalin/Hitler to take over to MAGNIFY their evil. In a stateless/Voluntaryist society where no such apparatus exists, the evil would receive no such magnification and would be dealt with much more easily.

                  “Limited government,” and you think I’M utopian. Name me a SINGLE State in human history which has not expanded from minimal authoritarianism to totalitarianism. Your Constitutionally limited State experiment has failed.

                  “I’d suggest that no where in history is that shown. . .” Yeah, no **** because you’re strawmanning me, buddy. I’ve listed for you and Monster more than one REAL WORLD example either in present day or history of effective voluntary systems for services/goods provided by the State today as well as societies which operated on such bases.

                  “As I understand it,” you understand wrong. Read Section 8 and Amendment 16. That was the entire purpose of the CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION. The Articles of Confederations had a fiscally feckless Congress between the states, it had no power to tax, only make requests of the states. The Constitution remedied that inability for the federal government to tax.

                  “234 years we’ve been successful.” Bullsh*t, the Constitution was violated immediately after it’s adoption by the very generation and very same INDIVIDUALS who wrote the thing. Then there is the fun fact that there was a civil war in less then 1/3 the time it took stateless Iceland. The magic scroll in D.C. doesn’t sprout teeth when it’s violated.

                  You also seem to happily disregard the fact that if enough popularity contest oligarchs agree, ANYTHING can become “constitution.

                  Roads
                  Roads were actually already being developed in the United States privately, that only changed once Alexander Hamilton told the turnpike companies to knock it off. That messages was reinforced by Jefferson’s Secretary of Treasury.

                  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A1gp9_oCafM
                  http://www.amazon.com/Market-Anarchy-Explained-Build-Roads/dp/1425769403
                  mises.org/books/roads_web.pdf Enjoy.

                  Emergency services
                  These originated as privately run services.
                  http://www.firemarkcircle.org/documents/goodstory.htm Enjoy.

                  Law
                  You didn’t bother reading about these the last time I pointed you to them so I doubt you will now.
                  mises.org/journals/jls/1_2/1_2_1.pdf
                  http://mises.org/daily/2701
                  http://www.stevesachs.com/papers/paper_thesis.html Enjoy.

                  Law and Defense
                  http://mises.org/rothbard/newlibertywhole.asp Skip to chapter 12
                  http://www.scribd.com/doc/41579155/An-Experiment-in-Anarcho-Capitalism-The-Not-So-Wild-Wild-West
                  http://www.peterleeson.com/Better_Off_Stateless
                  http://www.scribd.com/doc/41579155/An-Experiment-in-Anarcho-Capitalism-The-Not-So-Wild-Wild-West

                  All of the above.

            2. The answer to your first question is the asterisk gets around the censor. Using a W might work but I’ve never tried it. I don’t give insults that much effort.

              As for Dan? I read The Monster’s replies and good for him/her but I stopped wasting my time with jerks like Dan years ago. How’s that saying go? Never argue with a fool….

    1. Dan,
      You need to listen to Mark. Mark believes in taxation for the Constitutional purposes of government. Defending the country is the number one priority of the Federal Government and that is the one item the left always wants to cut. Why is it you leftists always want to say, “We will have to cut police, firefighters, etc?”

      Providing health care, providing welfare, providing money for agencies like the EPA and FCC is not Constitutional. Neither is the Department of Education or Federal Unemployment. Unemployment should come out of the State, the Federal Government has no Constitutional right to get involved in unemployment funds. If the state is providing it and taxing for it fine.

      Providing Services and Goods is not the job of the Federal Government. The nice thing about our system is, if you don’t like being taxed for something in one state, you can move to a state where they don’t tax for it.

      1. I’m not a “leftist,” I’m a Libertarian. I’m against taxation (lottery or bond initiatives not included to to the voluntary nature), not just what is used to fund police and the military but for things like the EPA and other regulatory entities, Great Society programs, subsidies, etc.

        Obviously the federal government does not pay for police departments, except the FBI/DEA, that is left up to mostly counties and municipalities. The problem is that those are paid for with money taken through extortion just as much as welfare and nanny-state programs are.

          1. You think those are mutually exclusive? You’re mistaken, gravely.

            I could get into semantics over the wording, philosophical history, etymology, and divisions but I’ll just now leave all that with the simple statement of fact that Libertarianism has an enormous amount of overlap with Anarchism.

            Not all Libertarians are [consistent, or] Anarchists, and not all Anarchists are Libertarians. The brand of Libertarianism you and most are exposed to are the less threatening, toothless and State permitted MINARCHIST brand of Libertarianism.

            Three examples of a Minarchist Libertarian would be Ron Paul, Judge Napolitano, and John Stossel. I suspect Napolitano may be a closet anti-statist or drifting to it resulting from time spent at the Mises Institute.

            There is much more to this than what those three men, whom I like a great deal, present on the subject.

            1. I’ve been a libertarian since about 1980 or so, maybe earlier but I just didn’t realize it yet. As long as I’ve known about libertarianism, there have been people who have tried to equate our philosophy with anarchism. Strangely, there are two distinct groups who do this. Anarchists who like to style themselves as libertarians, such as yourself, are by far the smaller of the two groups. The other is the authoritarian (whether he calls himself “conservative” or “liberal” or whatever) who opposes libertarian thinking, who wants to discredit minarchism by conflating it with anarchism.

              You cannot be a libertarian if you are an anarchist, because anarchy, while popularly considered the antithesis of a totalitarian dictatorship, nevertheless shares with it the suppression of liberty in favor of brute force. The anarchist, like the pacifist, claims the moral high ground of being “anti-violence”, but in refusing to resist aggression, aids and abets violence.

              Look to Somalia and Afghanistan for examples of anarchy at work. Note how “warlords” and such, despite having no diplomatic credentials, act rather like “governments”. And, ironically, look also to the enclaves within the US created by drug/prostitution/gambling/etc prohibitions: On paper, there is a lot of government, but in practice, these transactions being extra-legal, cannot be adjudicated by the government’s systems. Therefore, such extra-legal transactions occur in an anarchy within the over-reaching state. As Glenn Frey put it so succinctly: “You always carry weapons, ’cause you always carry cash.” There is a symmetry here; government applying force where it is not justified, or failing to apply it where it is, both result in more total force in the society. There is a V- or U-shaped function that maps the amount of force wielded by government vs. the total force in the society.

              Those who misinterpret Jefferson’s maxim “That government governs best which governs least” think that the logical endpoint of “least” is “zero”. But that’s not the proper way to read it. The best government is that which applies just enough force to punish aggressors against the person or property of others to minimize the total amount of force used (including violence threatened but not actually committed) in the society, but no more. That force must be wielded like an expert surgeon removing every bit of a tumor, but minimizing the amount of healthy tissue he excises. To take out more or less than that ideal amount will leave the patient less healthy.

              The sole moral justifications for the existence of government is to serve as the impartial arbiter of disputes, and to defend against aggression whether foreign or domestic. You allow as how lotteries and bond sales are legitimate ways for governments to fund their activities, but selling bonds just kicks the can down the road; at some point those bonds have to be redeemed with interest. That leaves us with lotteries. I doubt that a minarchist government could entirely fund its functions from lottery ticket sales, especially considering that such a government would not hold a legal monopoly on their sale.

              That means we’re going to have to have some kind of taxes.

              1. There are several issues here, and I will try to address them in order without being too wordy.

                1. Murray N. Rothbard. I quote him all the time, but there is a reason I do so, he was the most extensive, consistent, and principled thinker to lay out the philosophical reasoning and conclusions of modern Libertarianism (especially in the United States) and link it with it’s natural companion, Austrian Economics.

                He studied directly under Ludwig Von Mises, the man who converted Hayek from socialism, and expounded on those ideas even more thoroughly and worked them into political ideology. He was also one of the central figures in the founding of the Cato institute, which I doubt you would deny is libertarian. Likewise was he involved in the Mises Institute, of which Ron Paul, Napolitano, and Peter Schiff are fellows and 98% of the people there are AnCap.

                He is the individual who coined the term “anarcho-capitalism,” and was himself anti-state.

                http://mises.org/rothbard/newlibertywhole.asp

                2. You’ve forced me into semantics.
                Anarchy = no rulers. Traditionally if you read the early and primary philosophers of Anarchism the focus was not just opposition to the State but opposition to all hierarchy. That for them included the voluntary hierarchy of employer/employee situations in economics. Because of that many of them opposed capitalism and even property. See: Proudhan, Bakunin, Kropotkin, Emma Goldman, Stirner, and even Benjamin Tucker.

                Because of this history of anti-propertarianism and socialism in Anarchism is a term that Rothbard and many “radical” Libertarians move away from. There are terms like Voluntaryism, Libertarian Anarchism, Anti-Statism, and Agorism to show the advocating of neo-Lockean property rights and Individual liberty.

                If you want to link Anarchism inseparably to the property thought of Proudhon et al, then you are right that Libertarianism and Anarchy are mutually exclusive. If you mean Anarchy to mean no State, then Libertarianism can be A philosophy of Anarchy.

                3. “Anti-violence,” wrong, there may have been Anarcho-Pacifists like Leo Tolstoy, but that is not a part of Libertarianism, and is not a party of Anarchism at large.

                To quote Rothbard again;
                “The libertarian creed rests upon one central axiom: that no man or group of men may aggress against the person or property of anyone else. This may be called the “nonaggression axiom.” “Aggression” is defined as the initiation of the use or threat of physical violence against the person or property of anyone else. Aggression is therefore synonymous with invasion.” For A New Liberty: The Libertarian Manifesto, page 23.

                Non-aggression does not disallow defense of one’s person and property. Anarcho-Communists believe that exploitation is equivalent to violence and is their chief (fallacious) grievance against capitalism so they are wholly in support of aggression to eliminate capitalism. Emma Goldman conspired in a plot to assassinate a US President.

                4. Did you really think that Somalia is something that anti-statists haven’t looked into extensively?

                Somalia was poor when it had a state, and it is poor without a state. But if you want to look at the quality of life in Somalia, it has been measured by 18 key development indicators both before and after the collapse of it’s government. 15 of 18 of those indicators have improved since statelessness, with GDP being appropriately a ?.

                The country is largely Islamic, but in disputes non-religious the non-urban populations rely on the tribal code of law known as the Xeer to handle their problems. The Xeer is a close approximation of what Western philosophers call Natural Law. There are numerous areas in the region which are dominated by warring militias, and they are almost always the groups receiving foreign aid money, which is used to perpetuate the violence.

                Outside of those those areas, life is relatively hunky dory and BETTER than neighboring countries or militia dominated areas. Frequently there are local tribal warlords who will provide you protection services and run roads for what amounts to 5% of your income, which is notably lower than the total taxation in any State.

                5. Law is not by it’s definition or necessity a STATE service, much less a state monopoly service. There are many examples throughout history across the world of stateless systems of law operating on systems of the freedom of association/voluntary interaction. The North American old west, Ireland, Iceland, pre-dynastic Egypt, the Xeer in Somalia, European Merchant Law.

                Pointing to the widespread violence, rights violations, and generally unethical behavior pervasive in black markets is not an argument against Anti-State Libertarianism.

                In the United States, the State claims a coercive monopoly on law and dispute resolution. When people are operating in a gray or black market (even non-aggressive actions), by it’s nature is driven underground with little recourse in the monopoly courts. Violence becomes the only option, and with the types of individuals in these markets because of how society is structured and the prohibitions, there is little need to bring it above board.

                6. Don’t confuse the meaning of Jefferson with some type of objective RIGHT reading to those words. Jefferson may have been a Minarchist, but the words at their own face logically lead to no government at all. The problem you have is not with my reading of it but with way Jefferson phrased his meaning. Jefferson phrased it as such because of his fundamental assumption that some form of State is an inevitability.

                7. With regard to your statements about the government and aggression. The government itself is CENTERED on the fiat land claim of legitimate aggression. Involuntary taxation is extortion, a form of aggression and violating multiple levels of property rights. The ultimate threat at the heart of all State law is the threat of death, meaning that all laws under a State are the threat of the initiation of force, meaning that all laws under a State are Aggression.

                “While opposing any and all private or group aggression against the rights of person and property, the libertarian sees that throughout history and into the present day, there has been one central, dominant, and overriding aggressor upon all of these rights: the State. In contrast to all other thinkers, left, right, or in-between, the libertarian refuses to give the State the moral sanction to commit actions that almost everyone agrees would be immoral, illegal, and criminal if committed by any person or group in society. The libertarian, in short, insists on applying the general moral law to everyone, and makes no special exemptions for any person or group. But if we look at the State naked, as it were, we see that it is universally allowed, and even encouraged, to commit all the acts which even nonlibertarians concede are reprehensible crimes. The State habitually commits mass murder, which it calls “war,” or sometimes “suppression of subversion”; the State engages in enslavement into its military forces, which it calls “conscription”; and it lives and has its being in the practice of forcible theft, which it calls “taxation.” The libertarian insists that whether or not such practices are supported by the majority of the population is not germane to their nature: that, regardless of popular sanction, War is Mass Murder, Conscription is Slavery, and Taxation is Robbery. The libertarian, in short, is almost completely the child in the fable, pointing out insistently that the emperor has no clothes.” -“For a New Liberty: The Libertarian Manifesto,” pages 24-25 by Murray N. Rothbard

                “The libertarian is also eminently realistic because he alone understands fully the nature of the State and its thrust for power. In contrast, it is the seemingly far more realistic conservative believer in “limited government” who is the truly impractical Utopian. This conservative keeps repeating the litany that the central government should be severely limited by a constitution. Yet, at the same time that he rails against the corruption of the original Constitution and the widening of federal power since 1789, the conservative fails to draw the proper lesson from that degeneration. The idea of a strictly limited constitutional State was a noble experiment that failed, even under the most favorable and propitious circumstances. If it failed then, why should a similar experiment fare any better now? No, it is the conservative laissez-fairist, the man who puts all the guns and all the decision-making power into the hands of the central government and then says, “Limit yourself”; it is he who is truly the impractical Utopian.” -“For a New Liberty: The Libertarian Manifesto,” page 304 by Murray N. Rothbard.

                8. If a State cannot survive on the revenue provided by voluntary funding, that is not justification for it to go and strip other people’s wealth. Services of arbitration have been provided throughout history within systems established by States and without. Using aggression to prevent aggression would be considered an absurdity by even Kant.

                And before you criticize his deontology, the primary ethic of Libertarianism is the Non-Aggression Axiom which is itself deontological.

                1. I am quite familiar with the notion of anarcho-capitalism. There is a fundamental flaw in it. While private arbitration systems are possible, and when the parties to a dispute can agree to use one, it is almost always preferable that they do so (the main reservation being whether one party may be coerced into that agreement) rather than bring their disputes to the government, the fact remains that the very existence of a dispute indicates a lack of agreement. There will be situations where the parties cannot agree on who shall settle their dispute. Whoever is the arbiter of last resort is “government”. It is not possible to have “competing governments” that both claim to have that ultimate power. One will win, and the other will lose. That’s that.

                  If you want to call all taxation “evil”, then I will call the taxation power of a minarchist government a “necessary evil”, which I will endure because the ideal of no coercion isn’t achievable. You can rest assured that your position is “pure” and mine is “tainted”, while I will be equally assured that yours is impractical.

                  And non-aggression is not an axiom. It is a theorem. But that’s an argument our host probably wishes we not clutter this thread with further. Suffice to say that you are indeed an anarchist, who claims to be a libertarian, but non-anarchists who claim to be libertarians don’t count you among our number. Which is a long way of saying what I said in the first place.

                2. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KXNRzI64L9Q Several examples and hypotheticals about stateless arbitration included. Your assertion that the State has to be the final word is just that, and I already gave a couple examples of how voluntary law has worked in the real world past and present.

                  You are of course free to not count me as a Libertarian but such a position does not jive with the fact that many foundational figures of Libertarianism both in it’s modern origins and present day share my position. Nor does such a claim not jive with the central aim of Libertarianism, to maximize the liberty of the individual.

                  Make the claim if you wish, but it corresponds with facts as much as if I were to not count you as a member of humanity.

                  As for what I infer from your words was an implicit perception that my position is utopian, a common accusation, please refer to my quotes above and the following.

                  “It’s sad to me that such a basic thing as the principled opposition to coercion is considered to be extremist, unreasonable, unrealistic. Why do I have to believe in permanent peace to oppose war? How is it utopian to denounce force?

                  I share your confidence that force and fraud will always be with us, and I will always oppose them. But Statism is more than the prediction of “the subjection of the noninvasive individual to an external will.” Statism is the claim that institutionalized proactive coercion is justified. Anarchism rejects that conclusion.” -BK Marcus

                  Have a good one.

          2. Thanks Monster.

            I read through the entire conversation and that’s what I’ve been trying to say to him. You just did it much better than I could by a long shot.

            You seem to speak his political philosophy. I’ve never been able to figure out how the a community with out government actually functions more efficiently. In it’s absence something will pop up it’s the nature of things.

            I’ve been noticing hints of Anarchist comments popping up in a lot of different forums. As much as I want to think there is some good Anarchist out there they both seem to lead to chaos in my book.

              1. Of course I didn’t read all of that Dan stuff…Good grief(!) what a bloviator.
                Methinks he lives in a theoretical world unencumbered by reality and with nary a whisper from or regarding, basic wisdom. If words were like nets, Lt. Dan would be hopelessly entangled for at least a fortnight 🙂

    2. I agree that forced taxation on our property is immoral, like the income tax and inflation tax. However, what about voluntary taxes, like a sales tax? In this case, you’re chosing to buy a product or service knowing that you will be giving some of the cost to the government and well as the business.

      I would say that taxes such as a sales tax is acceptable and naturally any government that relied on such forms of revenue would necessarily be smaller and focused only on the important tasks of goverance.

      1. Whether you buy the good is voluntary, but if it is a tax on all transactions you really have no choice whatsoever. Also, your purchase of the good is voluntary but your payment of the tax, ie your paying a higher price passed on to you by the tax’s imposition on business, is not.

        The other problem is that by the “government,” making the fiat claim to a % of the value in any transaction like that, they are implicitly staking a claim of ownership on ALL goods and services taking place within the borders applicable. Think of the sales tax in terms of just regular joes.
        ———————————————-
        ex. You have a bread business and sell to your weekly customer Jack. You acquired those loaves of bread by trade with the producer to stock your shelves goods to sell for a profit, or however you set your business up. Jack works for a salary (paid contractually for his labor, making the $$ in his wallet the product of his labor) and wishes to trade you the product of his labor ($$) which you value for the loaf of bread that HE values.

        It is a free and voluntary exchange of private property legitimately acquired between two parties. There is no place for ME to come along and say “Okay, John, YOU now have to pay ME X% of your current price for freely trading YOUR property to Jack for HIS property.” You would laugh in my face, and rightly so, which is why when mafias make those demands they have a baseball bat or a gun. When the State makes those demands they call their clubs “nightsticks,” and their enforcers “police officers.”
        ———————————————-
        The problem I also have with sales/consumption taxes that they are are distortions in the marketplace. They increase the cost of (largely) consumer goods, that price is passed onto consumers meaning less product is sold and less people have access to it.

        Taxes like that also having conceded the premise and established the precedent are subject to arbitrary changes in the % of the taxation on the goods or on which goods they are on, which incentivizes lobbying for reduced taxation on lobbied goods and increases on competitors. It also serves as an indirect barrier to entry for business who’s only purpose is the delivery of goods to the consumer (grocery stores, gas stations, etc.).

        Lotteries and bond sales are 100% voluntary revenue sources for governments, and as such I cannot object to them as I would actual taxation.

Comments are closed.