Episode-1097- How A Libertarian Society Would Function

We have had some pretty good discussions about libertarian concepts on the blog here in a very old article I posted almost 4 years ago.  I guess something  happened a lot of new people found it.  What I am coming to understand is many see libertarianism, objectivity and anarchism as the same things, they are not the same things.

Many how would ______ get accomplished questions about libertarianism don’t actually apply to minarchist libertarianism.  So today I am going to discuss how a society that is at least moving in the direction of libertarianism would function and how things would get done and how our lives would be better for it.

Join Me Today to Discuss…

  • On Libertarianism
    • What is a libertarian
    • How do we differ from democrats, independents and republicans
    • What do libertarians really want
    • What is the libertarian view of social issues like marijuana and gay marriage
    • Is there any room  for any form of taxation in a libertarian system
    • Could an “income tax” ever be fair
    • How would we run a food system in a libertarian system
    • How would we run a banking system in a libertarian system
    • How would we “build schools and roads” in such a system
    • What safety net would exist for the truly disadvantaged
    • How is this related to self sufficiency, self reliance and independence

Resources for Today’s Show…

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239 Responses to Episode-1097- How A Libertarian Society Would Function

  1. Good stuff!

    Time to close the “church” tax loopholes too.

    • Robert Selzler

      As a Christian and an active member of a small church, I couldn’t agree more.

    • “Time to close the “church” tax loopholes too.”
      Obviously you don’t believe in the separation of Church and State or the first amendment or you wouldn’t say something like that. You couldn’t be a libertarian and hold that Statist view either where you would argue that the State is paramount and should be sovereign in all matters and the Church, indeed all our allegiances and alliances are subordinant to the State and therefore taxable and subject to regulation. You appear to be ignorant of the Two Kingdoms thinking behind the American experiment in the separation of Church and State in that neither rules the other, which you argued should change. Both of you should get a better education in this matter.

      • Modern Survival

        Actually separation of church and state is a great reason to close loopholes for churches. Separation means just that separation. If a church wants to be non taxed let them do so the same exact way any tax exempt organization does so, by making no profit.

        I have never understood your argument when made by others. Separation means no collusion right? Churches are able to accumulate wealth tax free specifically due to government programs. Um, that is collusion! Worse then government can and does attempt to influence church activities by threatening to revoke said status.

        There was also never a “two kingdoms thinking” in our founding, man I hear the words of a rogue pastor rewriting history in his own image there! America was founded with a ZERO kingdom thinking, as in none. Religion and the state were to be separate. There was no concern or even consideration of the “tax status” of a church, because no such taxes existed or were planned. Taxes in the US until 1913 were not on income, they were only on imports and certain sales taxes, oh and churches paid them.

        Man talk about revisionist history. As libertarians we want all income taxes removed but I think most of us also believe if they are to exist they should exist equally for all citizens and entities.

        • Jack, you hear ‘kingdom’ and misunderstand what I was saying. Your next sentence defined what I meant by ‘two kingdoms’ philosophy, separation of church and state, not this ‘zero’ kingdoms idea you came up with. The state doesn’t regulate the church and the church doesn’t regulate the state, just like two separate kingdoms which ironically co-exist in the same physical landscape. Embassies don’t pay taxes to the countries they exist in and likewise churches don’t pay taxes in this country on their property. The people who work for churches and non-profits still pay their taxes just like anyone working for a non-profit. For the state to try to exert itself over churches, without sufficient reason, is to violate the first amendment and an effort to break this standard that was established from our nation’s founding. There is no revisionist history here, just your ignorance of it. What is this collusion nonsense? This just sounds like bigotry to me.
          To also argue that tax free status didn’t exist before income taxes, well, duh! This whole issue doesn’t revolve just around taxes anyway. The Amish won a lot of liberty from the Federal government in court because they actually do what the churches used to do, take care of their own. They school their own children so they don’t have to pay school taxes. They take care of their own elderly so they don’t have to pay Social Security taxes. There are other freedoms they retained because they kept the State out of their affairs and the courts have repeatedly defended this ‘two kingdoms’ solution. They do pay sales taxes and some others. I believe they do pay income taxes.
          This knee-jerk reaction of ‘take away the church tax loophole’ sounds ignorant and hints of bigotry, especially since it wasn’t in the context of eliminating all non-profit tax loopholes.

        • Now, about that so-called revisionist history. How about reading some John Locke?
          http://books.google.com/books?id=AmYMAAAAYAAJ&pg=PA300#PPA300,M1
          John Locke was not some rogue pastor and he was most influential in the Founders’ thinking, right Jack? How about Martin Luther who wrote a lot on Two Kingdoms theology? You seem to just assume we don’t know anything when you disagree with us. How much more evidence do I need to show you? You say you have respect for our beliefs but I’m not seeing it.

      • @Greg, Jack,

        Hence the reason statism is so bad. It creates hatred between people where there should exist love.

        We can never decide on what a “fair” tax would be because, by its very definition taxes are not fair. Taxes, by definition, are theft. Will I ever agree with someone who suggests a “fair” way to steal from me and others? No, of course not, because there is no “fair” way. I applaud anyone that is able to lessen the amount that is stolen from them.

  2. Having the government obtain its revenue from providing a value added service that we could choose to pay for is a concept that blows my mind. Can you imagine the DMV treating you as a valued customer?

    Great show. Plenty to think about.

  3. “Disclosure required.” I like it, but enforcement through counter-marketing watchdogs might not work if the two or three huge companies in a given sector collude to both deceive the consuming public or whitewash an ingredient swap-out. Like when sugar got expensive in the 1970s and Coke and Pepsi both switched to high-fructose corn syrup – they had lots of incentive to quietly coordinate during that time so that they could maintain profits.

    Great idea for banks. A good further rule: Board members are personally liable for insuring deposits. If the bank goes belly-up, Board members get wiped out first. They’ll clean up their gambling habit real quick.

    I hope you get around to DOD and foreign policy in the next round – those are issues for which I get the most resistance when discussing this with others.

    • About the 2 or 3 thug companies working together: There had better be only 2 or 3 companies in that sector then. Because if there is someone who has a company or thinks of opening a company in that sector they could just sue all the thug companies and get the entire market for themselves.
      Think about it. If you were to start a company in a sector and people from the other companies would come to you and say: “we do this and if you don’t rat us out we will give you 25% of the market.” What would you do? Sue them and get 100% or take their offer?

      • Many of the products we buy are produced by mega-corporations that own several “competing” brands. A smaller start-up could not afford the team of lawyers to successfully sue the big 2-3. The general rule of rough proportionality would not permit a judicial ruling that would make a dent in a billion-dollar corporation if successfully sued by a much smaller company. The big company does not even need to invite the small one into their cabal.

        • Modern Survival

          But how many more competitors would exist with no huge barriers to entry. Do you get how these mega corps are empowered and protected by regulations, not controlled by them. Most arguments against libertarianism fail to take the TOTAL change into account.

          So your question is how competition alone control corporate abuse?

          The question has two holes

          1. It assumes that regulations currently do anything to prevent said abuse, they don’t they actually empower it.

          2. It assumes that removing regulations would not result in more competitors, when of course it would.

          People point to past so called “deregulation” and abuses associated with it, but the reality is there has never been any meaningful true deregulation of anything except perhaps phone services and THAT ACTUALLY WORKED and it is still overly regulated.

        • No doubt that the regs are skewed to disempower competition, they’ve been drafted and refined to do just that.

          I’m not trying to argue against libertarianism, I’m just exploring the point about counter-market watchdogs. It’s a new idea for me and I thought you were headed toward saying independent private companies could compete to do the job (like libertarian security forces or insurance providers: folks subscribe and choose the best providers over time.)

          I understand that free competition is supposed to mean that prices to fall and quality goes up, but would lack of regs necessarily increase competition if the mega corp is in place at the get-go? How could a new start-up compete with the massive purchasing power and distribution infrastructure already in place for the huge company?

          Even very innovative new companies seem to get bought out when they get anywhere near 5% market share. Tom’s of Maine and Annie’s Natural come to mind.

          Granted, this experiment has never been faithfully tried.

        • @Norcal Mike
          I think it could be a bit simpler.. if someone finds evidence that a company is lying to their customers.. they hand it over to the DA, and they prosecute it.

          If it is found to be true, the penalty is the court costs.. PLUS they are required to place a prominent warning on ALL of their products and advertising materials that says:

          ‘We were found guilty of lying to our customers about our ingredients’

          For the next X years (depending on the level of crime).

          They would also be prohibited from selling off or renaming the brand, or their company, for the duration of the sentence.

          Gee.. how do you think that would effect their market share? (and stock price)

        • @Norcal Mike (wrong reply level)

          About large companies..

          For the most part they SUCK at competition, and if they weren’t being continually subsidized, protected and untaxed would mostly go away (would be unprofitable).

          With rare exception they CAN’T innovate, which is why they have to buy promising start ups to inject some live blood into their rotting carcasses.

          When they do, they often make horrifically bad (expensive) mistakes.

          Examples: AOL (Time Warner), MySpace (News Corp), GroupOn (Google – fortunately for them, GroupOn said no), Washington Mutual (Wells Fargo), Countrywide (Bank of America)

          Without bail out, most of these ‘bad bets’ would have put the company out of business (exception being Google).

        • Modern Survival

          @Insidious, or just make it a criminal offense and in addition to what you said the count would be based on units sold by everyone who had proven knowledge of the deception.

          Let’s say you come to my house and I put a LOT of alcohol into some fruity drink and lie to you about it. I tell you there is no alcohol in it. You drink it and get drunk and are pissed because you don’t drink. Know what I am guilty of in Texas? That would be felony criminal assult!

          Sooooooooooo, say some execs at Coke LIE about the ingredients and get nailed. Say 13,000,000 consumers bought that product before they got caught, how does a conviction of 13 million felonies sound? So simple if government simply enforced contracts instead of inventing laws.

        • I like the per unit penalty. Thanks for indulging my curiosity guys.

    • IMO (you’re going to be seeing this a lot) :-)

      The central idea of Libertarianism is that people should not be forced into doing particular things or professing a certain set of beliefs.

      In the marketplace, this means one should not be ‘forced’ to purchase a product from a particular supplier. There are two paths to marketplace force:
      1) A law that states that you MUST purchase something (Obamacare)
      2) A monopoly on the supply of a ‘necessity’

      As monopolies can only be maintained through force (including ‘temporary’ copyright and patent monopolies) in both cases, government ends up involved.

      So, how does this relate to Pepsi & Coke ‘colluding’ to use HFCS? (and collusion among marketplace players in a Libertarian future)

      Well.. the big ‘complaint’ would be that Pepsi, Coke and HFCS manufacturers created a marketing campaign to convince people that HFCS is good for you. And that marketing campaign was successful.. for a time. But like the tobacco industry, in the end, the truth came out.

      So, how would this differ from a libertarian version? Well, in a libertarian version you wouldn’t have a USDA pretending to be an ‘unbiased’ source of health information while in reality acting as an industry marketing department.

      Consumers looking for advice on the current best understanding of what is healthy v. harmful would choose that source from a competitive marketplace of groups providing health information (Think ‘Robb Wolf’s Health Watch’, or ‘Dave Asprey’s Research Review’). Other companies would rate said health info providers based on their track records of accuracy and bias.

      • Modern Survival

        Here is a challenge for those worried about monopolies, give me an example of a monopoly that could have lasted and/or existed without the collusion of government. Just one?

        • Microsoft and Apple seem to have pretty close to a duopoly, though I’m not sure about the gov’t involvement aspect.

        • @Norcal Mike -
          Linux & Chrome (as in ‘Chromebook’)

        • Ok, the duopoly might become a trio-poly. Linux is arcane and extremely uncommon. In the case of Chromebook, I suppose that any quarter-trillion dollar company can break into the segment of their choosing. Still, no government involvement that I know of limiting competition here.

          Jack’s point is still valid, though, this is a very rare and imperfect exception.

        • Modern Survival

          Also is the dominance by MS and Apple good or bad for small businesses?

          How many millionaires exist from making Apps for Apple? How many from writing their own programs for both MS and Apple?

          If you want to start a company making PCs you are free to do so, Michale Dell is a billionaire from doing so. Anyone can write and sell software for PC or Apple.

          I mean honestly this isn’t a monopoly at all it is an example of two companies doing a great job and no other company ever really trying to compete.

          Over time both operating systems will fade away anyway. We are not that far away from a time when anything you ever wish to do will be browser based. OS’s will be mostly in the server environment. With that the duopoly is much smaller anyway. In the server world a lot more unix and linux is being used right now.

          People are already designing machines with this in mind. Imagine all the machines horsepower simply dedicated to the tasks at hand. That is where we are headed.

        • According to the Wikipedia. 93.8% of supercomputers run Linux.

          Desktop penetration is low.

          Duopolies are pretty common in tech. You start with 100 companies and after a couple of years two are left standing. As long as they’re meeting the needs of the marketplace (good enough products at a good enough price).. they remain.

          Intel – AMD : desktop chips
          AMD(ATI) – Nvidia : graphics ships
          Apple – Microsoft : desktop OS
          Apple – Google : smart phones (the game isn’t over.. but its getting closer)

        • Robert Selzler

          @Modern Survival

          http://xkcd.com/934/

          :D

        • “Over time both operating systems will fade away anyway. We are not that far away from a time when anything you ever wish to do will be browser based.”

          So true. Looking at new stuff programmers are working on, much falls into that category.

  4. Being libertarian, I agree with what you said today, and I liked the little you said about the 12 tenants of the Communism. That’s what I’d like to hear you expound on. I think you can make the comparisons between that and the corresponding Libertarian stance. Boy, would I love that. and you might even throw in a little of Sal Alinksy’s rules for radicals. Another good one goes in the books.

  5. Jamie Skelton

    I know the argument “what I do in my bedroom doesn’t affect anyone else” sounds true at first but if we think it through it is the furthest thing from the truth.

    If it were true, then why are there so many within the homosexual community pushing the public school system to indoctrinate MY children on this issue? Why do my children have to be taught that it’s okay for Tommy to have two daddys? Why must there be sex education classes teaching elementary age children about homosexuality?

    OK, so I take my children out of government schools… even though supposedly my children should be afforded the same opportunities as every other American child. What they do in their bedroom does affect me and everyone else.

    Also, I cringed when Obama gave his approval of gay marriage (not because I hate homosexuals) but because I KNEW that he must know exactly what is happening in his neighborhood. I had just read an article interviewing residents of the D.C. area. on their BIGGEST fear. What was it? That AIDS is spreading so fast throughout that area, residents are concerned they or a family member will get that news themselves next.

    One of my best friends’ brothers left the family home at a young age bound for D.C. He was a homosexual. He called home sometime later asking his family if he could come home to die and he did. The HIGH risk of AIDS for those practicing this lifestyle cannot be denied and it does not stay within the homosexual community. Many are bi-sexual and most have hundreds of partners.
    Anyway, we can thank the media for keeping the truth about this from us.

    How can we say that what happens in our bedrooms doesn’t affect anyone else?

    The truth is that we are responsible for every action we make. Homosexual–heterosexual–whatever. If I lay down with 10 different men and have 10 children that don’t know who their father is and they grow up to be criminals or child molesters or whatever…it goes back to what happens in my bedroom.

    We are way off track to think that freedom is doing whatever *we* want to do. This is the most deceptive enslavement because it is self-enslavement. True freedom is doing what is best for others.
    Thanks for letting me share my thoughts. = )

    • I am sorry but I have to disagree. Aids is not a homosexual disease not are homosexuals to blame for it , and using aids as a stance against gay marriage or a gay lifestyle is an out dated argument and is null and void and it shows fear and a prejudice nothing more, and if that was truly a concern then incouraging stable monogamist relationships would take care of that wouldn’t it? . There is a reason why the government is so against it, and it’s simple, spousal benefits. Marriage income tax breaks. It’s a money game. The truth is, homosexuals are no different than you or I, they go through the same problems as any other couple. I share the same basic views on two guys kissing and such as jack, but to be fair I don’t like seafood, they both disgust me, and kinda turn my stomach, but if you like it, that’s your choice go for it. Eat seafood and get married.

    • Actually “disgust” maybe be an over statement, it grosses me out… Fresh water fish disgusts me lol

    • Jamie, I agree with you whole heartedly, no man is an island and what you do does affect others and I think that is why society needs morality, but not the morality of government.

      Forced morality never works.

      I think it is wrong that any school would teach a child something different than what that child’s parent believes. I think that unfortunately in this country we as parents have given away our responsibility to raise our children to the state. We should take that responsibility back (homeschool) or at least be more involved with what happens at school.

      The state should stay out of all matters of morality, and all issues of faith. The only role of government should be to assure our liberties, and protect those who are being victimized.

      I think what it boils down to is that organized religion dropped the ball, and the government picked it up, and boy the government makes a pretty poor pastor…or rabbi, or fill in the blank.

      As I reflect on what happened in this country so that the government is playing such a large role in morality, I have come to the conclusion that all men need some sort of moral structure in which to guide their lives call it religion or conscience, or whatever, they need a moral compass so to speak.

      When folks didn’t find what they were looking for or they found hostility from religious groups, they began to look to the government for their moral compass, or even worse they look for guidance from themselves, and try to make that government (there new religion) conform to their own beliefs.

      Would you say that people are often skeptical about religion? Would you also say that those same people often have complete faith in politics?

      It seems that politics and religion has flipped places, and that is dangerous. Whenever a religious group has the power to force the morality of some on to the backs of others it results in disastrous consequences, no matter what that religion is.

      • Jamie Skelton

        BarnGeek,
        I totally agree with you on the error of forced morality. It is sad to me to see my fellow Christians trying to. So many demand rights and privileges while rejecting responsibility. It just ain’t gonna work. Thanks for your thoughtful reply = )

        • So then what do you think about Christians forcing morality on to gays by some sort of “protection of marriage act”?

          Personally I prefer that the government stay out of the question of marriage all together. No one should dictate to anyone else what their morality should be. Morality is personal, and if your a Christian it is between you and the Holy Spirit and no one else. Wouldn’t you agree? I mean who else can be an impartial judge? How can anyone but the Holy Spirit judge someone else justly? Except maybe Jesus and he chose not to judge, because that was not his role on earth. “I have come not to condem the world but to save it”

          I think this is a conversation that more Christians should have.

        • Jamie Skelton

          Honestly, I think Christians are wrong to put their trust in government. I’m afraid we (as Christians) actually lead people to be further deceived when we attempt reformation through law. God does not want reformation but *trans*formation from the inside out through His Son/His Spirit—just as you explained. I debate this with family and friends all the time on the issues of abortion, gay marriage, etc… saying, “What difference does the law make when we still have people with hearts that want to kill their unborn–we still have homosexuals.” As Christians we are to be concerned with souls not outward conformity that still leads to death.
          Despite this position, I still struggle with where to stand politically on issues that I am against.
          You know what–maybe I just made things clearer for myself…I think I need to say what (that is, who) I am for and not concern myself with what I am against. And truly I am not “against” homosexuals–I am against anyone being destroyed/condemned. I understand this to be love—far far purer than the “tolerance” that is preached. I think “tolerance” is cruel. If I were a homosexual I wouldn’t want tolerance, I’d want a Christian to love me enough to tell me the truth.
          I know that many “Christians” (pseudo-Christians really) hypocritically judge and bring reproach on Christianity, but I believe there are sincere humble Christians that warn of sin and death and when they speak they are simply sharing the judgments that God has already made in His Word–that we are all guilty, there is none righteous–not one. It isn’t a judgment of their own making. I once heard it described like this “I am just one beggar telling another beggar where to get bread.”
          I believe the church dropped the ball by shrinking back from our personal responsibilities to spread the good news (that we can have forgiveness through Jesus Christ) which can’t really be accepted or understood without the bad news (which is very uncomfortable to give) that we are all sinners, guilty, needing to be reconciled to our Creator.
          Instead, we are more pre-occupied with materialism and comfort–and it’s easier (so we may think) to try and hold onto our comforts through government.
          I know that my writing is hard to follow. I am not a good writer and I apologize if I have been confusing.
          Honestly, I believe the Bible—every word—and we are told that if/when ***God’s people*** repent and turn to him He would heal our land. I really rest in that…but I am still in this flesh and sometimes struggle not to turn to the right or the left. I genuinely appreciate a friendly discussion. What I always want to come across to people more than anything else is that I care about all people. = )
          P.S. I am new to these discussions, so I assumed “Modern Survival” is Jack. Am I wrong?

        • Modern Survival

          The one thing I think it is important for anyone with that perspective to understand is it is fine for you to live your life that way, it isn’t fine for you to attempt to compel me to do so in any way, period. If I want you or God to help me “transform”, I’ll ask for help. All I and most libertarians are asking is for people who want something different then we do to pursue their goals without trying to drag us into it.

          Frankly if we can legislate “Christian morality” in this nation we and especially Christians have REAL PROBLEM. Because it means we could also let’s say at some point legislate “Muslim Morality” or “Jewish Morality” or any morality based on FAITH alone simply based on who the current majority ends up being.

          Like I keep saying this means if you want freedom to live your life your way the only way it can happen and your ability to do so can remain secure is to allow others the same freedom, specifically those you most disagree with.

        • Jamie Skelton

          Insidious, I can assure you I’m not for gun control, = D but I do believe that when we abuse our freedoms we lose them and there is nothing we can do about it. There is a sowing/reaping effect designed by a perfectly just Creator. When you’re a person who truly believes that with all their heart, soul, mind, and strength (as I do) you never find it necessary to go crazy about anything… I patiently rest in His sovereignty.
          I think the computer makes it so easy to wrongly interpret how someone is saying something… I hate that.
          After I read “Modern Survival’s” response slowly–a third time it didn’t sound as bad as I initially took it. More than anything I felt it twisted what I had said… even going so far as saying that I could not “accept a child that had 2 daddies” =/ I’m like—WHAT?? Where did that come from. I said nothing remotely close to that.
          The method I prefer for real change isn’t on your list. And if I hadn’t seen it in my own life for myself, I wouldn’t believe it either. It’s Jesus Christ (the real one, not the one used for marketing). But I don’t agree with the common path taken by many Christians in America that attempt to change the people/nation through law. That is the dark ages all over again. Yikes!

        • Jamie Skelton

          @Modern Survival–this is an honest question… Do you consider yourself to be “compelling” others in ways “to live a better life” or are you just sharing what you personally have found to be true because you care?

          I feel it’s safe to assume the latter of you and can only ask that you consider this to be the same place I am coming from as a Christian. If it is an honest Christian you are having a discussion with—everything he believes, says and does will originate with his belief in God/the Bible. Just as you have a set of beliefs about origins that you base everything else on.

          It may not come up every other sentence, but it will be a foundation that regularly comes out. It often seems that this is acceptable for every segment of society except Christians. Isn’t it hypocritical to rail against someone making a judgment about right and wrong–because that’s the very thing you’re doing yourself–making your own personal judgment.

          Everyone has standards/morality/ whatever you want to call it. Aren’t homosexuals wanting to get married trying to legislate *their* morality?

          Evolution is a religious belief where science/man is god (if not in name, in practice) yet this religion can be taught in schools.

          Sorry if I am confusing–I am attempting to show the hypocrisy in all this tolerance preaching. But at the same time, please don’t read into this something I haven’t said—like “I want to legislate Christianity” or “I hate homosexuals” or whatever else we’re charged with.

          I don’t know about you, but I always want to know why a person does what they do. WHY is far more important than who, what, when or how. I don’t care what they believe–I want to know. So if I comment with a Christian perspective–is that acceptable to you?–without you feeling that I am trying to force Jesus on you? I know better than anyone else that it cannot be done.

        • Modern Survival

          @Jamie, first let me give you some advice (off topic) use the return key and get some day light between paragraphs. I thought you question and response were good so I did it for you, please read it and look at your other recent comment and notice how much easier it is to read this way. You don’t have to do this but I am just suggesting when words don’t all smash together I and others will be more likely to really read the postings you put effort into.

          Now on the whole am I suggesting or compelling, you are right I am not trying to compel anyone at all, I am not even really suggesting I am providing education and entertainment that any listener is choosing to listen by their own free will and I say often that I reserved the right to be wrong.

          Let me explain to you though were Christians struggle in making an argument from the angle of “due to my faith” or “as a Christian” when taking to a non Christian. It just seems that many of you don’t get that we simply don’t believe what you do and won’t put any credence into your opinion based on support of your argument with Christian or Biblical dogma. I am trying not to be offensive here so please realize that text is the lowest form of communications and it is easy to be misunderstood but I shall do my best here. I really do RESPECT your beliefs please know that, if you were in MY HOME let alone I yours and before a meal wished to pray I would bow my head with respect while you did so. But I would do the same for a Muslim, a Hindu, a Buddhist or a Jewish person out of respect.

          That is respect for a belief, not buying into it.

          Many of us no Christians specifically deists (which I am), agnostics, atheists and pagans feel Christians just don’t really get that we don’t believe what you do. You will get no more leverage in a a debate with someone like me by saying “the Bible teaches us” or perhaps “according to God’s word” then I would if I told you but “according to the Egyptian book of the dead” or to be even more blunt, “according to the Lord of the Rings Trilogy”, we just don’t believe what you do so your Bible has no authority over us, no power to influence, etc.

          You didn’t say anything wrong and likely many of us would not be as sensitive as we are about it if there were not so many that are far more over the top all of the time from this angel.

          As a Christian you believe that the bible is “the divinely inspired word of God” as a deist I believe it to be a “astro literary hybrid with significant historical and mythical content and possessing remarkable literary value”.

          So remember this started with gay marriage right? Most Christians can’t make a single argument against it without resorting to the bible or what their pastor said last week. I do applaud you for trying but you did fail.

          Your argument is basically about AIDS, well monogamy bit it strait or gay is what prevents the spread of AIDS. The one place AIDS is still really running rampant is in Africa where it is spread mostly between heterosexuals. This argument is a non starter, it has nothing to do with gay marriage. Two gay people without AIDS can have all the sex they want and while you and I may be grossed out by it they won’t “create AIDS” any more then treating Gays EQUALLY under the law will create more cases of AIDS.

          Even if only gays got AIDS is that any reason to prevent Gay marriage. Far as I know only black people get sickle cell so is that a reason to prevent them from marrying? Two blind people (if blind due to genetics) have a probability of having a blind child, should they be forbidden from marrying? What about dwarfs, should we stop them from marrying? The fact that one class of people are more likely to or not to get a disease isn’t a reason to ban them from marriage. It just isn’t.

          Going back to your first time bringing it up you mentioned Obama backing gay marriage, wow what a case for this issue being nothing but a misdirection smoke screen. Don’t you remember the assclown being opposed to gay marriage in the first election? Do you really think he had a change or heart or was he just playing political games?

          I hope this all makes sense.

        • “Do you consider yourself to be “compelling” others in ways “to live a better life” or are you just sharing what you personally have found to be true because you care?”

          Great question Jamie, which leads to another question. Does there seam to be some sort of a universal sense of morality (right or wrong)? I think everyone should serouisly ask themselves this question, where does this sense of morality come from? Where do we get this idea of one thing is right and another thing is wrong?

          Why are people not always selfish? Why do people from everywhere do good things?

        • Jamie Skelton

          Insidious, in these terms I think I am totally tolerant in the true sense. But it seems I am placed into the “intolerant” category if I simply speak it? Even though it wouldn’t be in hate or anger, just point blank honesty about my beliefs and/or concern. Hate speech, right?
          This just seems to foul it all up for me. That’s why I think tolerance (as the left promotes it) is cruel–like a phony “acceptance” really – like the kisses of an enemy. Craziness..
          I better just go bake or sew something lol….

        • Jamie Skelton

          BarnGeek—ahhh you sucked me back in lol
          A universal sense of morality? Undeniable. = )
          Like C.S. Lewis explains: you will hear atheists (as he once was) argue right and wrong. Where do they get a sense of justice? Justice/love/truth doesn’t evolve. If there is such a thing as justice, there is a Judge. The Truth can’t be relative because Truth purely defined can never change or it is a lie. So either there is absolute truth or none at all.
          What really baffles me (which it shouldn’t because of the clear message of Romans 1) is how people who are so close to nature/creation/growing things and seeing reproduction and the natural processes necessary for these things and likewise, see the destruction that comes from injecting unnatural processes into the mix— can turn around and be totally blind to it with human beings.
          It’s frustratingly close–yet so far away.
          As to why people do good things…
          I think many are ultimately self-serving, but being originally created in God’s image we can see glimpses of Him in things like compassion, empathy, mercy, etc… which hold back a great deal of evil in this world, but ultimately can’t save.
          And just as sure as the compassion that is in God is His perfect justice–which we can’t satisfy with good deeds. So I thank the Lord for taking my place.

        • Modern Survival

          @Jamie you said,

          “Where do they get a sense of justice?” Meaning an atheist or perhaps a deist like me. Does that mean you think we only have a sense of justice due to the Christian version of God? Again this is where it all falls apart when Christians try to convince people like me about stuff like this.

          You want me to believe that only your version of God can be responsible for my view of justice, morality and care of my fellow man, for my sense of right and wrong? Is that what you are saying?

          Let me tell you ethics and morality predate Christianity and Judaism by a LONG HAUL. The entire pagan faith is based on morality with “do as thou will an harm none”, this wasn’t divinely inspired by the version of God you are telling me is the only true version of God.

          This is due to man’s capacity for logic and reason and his ability to judge and discern and his ability to empathize with his fellow man.

          Where we likely agree is that this sense is part of who we are and hence it is part of our creation and in that way it comes from God. That isn’t a case for Christianity though, just for the existence of a creator. Many societies had damn fine legal systems long before anyone attempted to save them. Much inspiration behind the Declaration of Independence came from what was called “The Great Law of Peace” which came from Native Americans long before any white man set foot in North America and told them they were heathens and needed to be saved.

          Any human that isn’t mentally defective has the innate ability to empathize with other humans. All “morality” stems from this. Like I said you and I feel this is part of our creation itself but that doesn’t make a case for the “God of Abraham” only a creator of some sort. Frankly I don’t even get the argument which I have indeed heard from many.

        • Jamie Skelton

          Thanks Jack–I know you’re an extremely busy man and appreciate you taking that time.I clearly understand your points and still respect you. = )

        • Jack,
          Yes, you are exactly correct, the fact that people all respect a “natural law” or universal morality does not make the case for Christianity. However since we agree that this exists, and that it must have come from some sort of Creator then we have a base to build a dialog from and engage in a conversation.

          You may have heard this argument many times, Jamie eluded to it’s origin in Modern Christianity by mentioning CS Lewis. It comes from his book called Mere Christianity, which is a compilation of radio addresses that he made in Brittan during the Nazi bombing raids during WW 2.

          You may be interested in reading or listening to this book, as a study of a society going through a SHTF senario.

          Here is a link to the audio version on Youtube.

          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=umG6idoXF8E&feature=share&list=PL4A31B907BE486BA5

          I linked to part 2 because this is the part that discusses the “law of nature” starting at 6:33 in the video.

        • Jamie Skelton

          I should have said: “Where do *we* get a sense of justice?”

          All true justice originates in the one true Judge, as there cannot be many different judges and many different systems. That would cancel it all out.

          I understand the one true Judge/God to be the “God of Abraham”/ a Spirit, who became flesh, (Jesus Christ) in order to redeem us from “the fall” (which I’m sure your familiar with) where the Bible teaches why we die and why there is evil in the world.

          We (as Christians) can point to more than “my faith leads me to believe…” and “Well God’s Word says…”

          In fact, Jesus pointed to creation to explain everything—even down to a seed, saying “Unless a grain of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it cannot bring forth more fruit.” But he was talking about Himself and what was about to happen to him–His death and resurrection.

          I used to not understand *why* Jesus needed to die for me or *how* His death could save me. He explains it to us through what He has made. Having the knowledge we do about seeds (the ones we plant) I was fascinated to find all the references to “seed” in the Bible. In the Old Testament it is the Hebrew word “zerah” and refers not only to agricultural seed but also the seed of man and specifically, the seed of Adam and the seed of Jesus. “In Adam” we die. “In Jesus” we have life.

          Because of the of man, when Adam and Eve (through their freedom) chose to disobey God–the result (as God had warned them) was death. We are Adam’s seed as is every other human being in this world. So we are corrupted seed—in the same way that we know that “bad” agricultural seed will produce more bad seed. This is *why* Jesus (the perfect seed) needed to die for us to save us.

          We are “bad” seed. No matter how much good we have done, we fall far short of God’s perfect justice and cannot stand before Him on our own merit. We can’t compare ourselves to our fellow man, we have to compare ourselves to perfection.

          As to *how* Jesus’ death can save me…
          Perfect seed will bring forth perfect seed–able to stand before God–not on our merit, but Christ’s. This is why you have have likely heard Christians refer to being “IN Him”. This is how we understand that we too (once dead and buried/planted in the ground) will come to new life, just as His creation shows us with ag seed. This is why His resurrection means everything.

          I can look at nature and see that God’s Word affirms everything in creation.

          Back to our discussion on homosexuality- (don’t worry, just briefly) you can look at nature and see natural processes. You personally see the destructive nature of working against what is natural. God’s Word (bear with me) explains this exact process, but with humans in Romans 1. –when people worship the creation instead of the Creator–when they suppress Truth, God gives them over to their own way–to a darkened heart and mind to do what is unnatural (male with male and female with female). We don’t see this in nature. They can’t reproduce. If we try to replicate this in our garden? The end result is destruction.

          Here is where it all “falls apart” for many Christians trying to convince you. —thinking we can, because we can’t. We would be God ourselves if we could. Frankly I’m glad that no human being really has that power over my mind–only God alone. God has to reveal Himself to you personally.

          All we (Christians) are responsible for doing is being ambassadors for Christ. God is appealing to people *through us*/on His behalf to be reconciled to Him because Jesus Christ has made that possible. As humans we make serious mistakes trying to be His ambassadors, but we have forgiveness because we have believed in and accepted the sacrifice of His Son for our sins. You see Christians at different stages of maturity—just as you would observe a plant you have started. Some are weak. Some are strong. Some are bearing fruit and doing beautifully. Some need lots of staking and pruning (likely all). Even so, we are in the process of being transformed into His likeness (think of the “parent plant”) but this will not be fully realized on this earth—only death, just as a seed’s ultimate destination is the dirt to see what it will become–only for humans that destination is eternal.

          This all may sound like foolishness to you—the Bible actually says that it does to those who are perishing, but to us who believe it is the power of God to save and He designed it this way to destroy the wisdom of the wise. In this way no man on earth will be able to claim that HE was wise and smart enough to “find” God with his own intellect.

          In fact, we might jump to the conclusion that the most wicked people are the Adolf Hitler, mass murderer types (and yes they are heinous) but Christians learn that what is even more dangerous is trying to be “LIKE” God–in other words–able to save myself attitude. This is what made Lucifer fall from heaven. God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.

          Anyway, I don’t expect to convince you. No one (human) convinced me. God revealed these things to me and affirms them His Word.

          I hope that wasn’t too confusing. I really do try so hard–lol!

        • Modern Survival

          @Jamie, look this is all I am trying to say, everything you just said, DOES NOT apply to me, I do not share your belief system. Further neither I nor any other citizen of this republic should be forced by the power of the state via a so called democratic process to do so.

          And again when you say something like, “but with humans in Romans 1. –when people worship the creation instead of the Creator–when they suppress Truth……”

          Again, do you get that I don’t care what it says in Romans 1? Do you get that my only point is that Romans 1 not John X or Acts Y should not be used to create law in a republic that is founded on certain principles.

          1. Separation of Church and State

          2. Sovereignty of the individual over the member states and the Federal State (basically all power is on loan from the people)

          I could go on but that is frankly enough. You should no more be able to use the states power to prevent a gay marriage then you should be able to require that everyone obey the Sabbath.

          Let’s reverse things to make a point here. Say people like me were in the majority and we decided that religion was doing great harm and passed a law that churches could no longer conduct marriage only a state official? How would you feel about that?

          How would you like it if Muslims because the majority and wanted law based on that faith, or say the FLDS? Perhaps the Pagans take over and declare the Equinoxes and Solstices the High Holidays they are to them and have Government Shutdown for three days around all four of them? How does that grab you?

          Does that sound unreasonable and unbefitting of a republic? I think so, just like I think the position of many Christians that we should police marriage their way because their religion says so. If you want freedom of your religion you must allow that others have that same freedom including people like me who are deists and people like more in the TSP community than you might imagine that are agnostics and pagans.

          Again I am not trying to be a jerk, I just don’t think it is reasonable for anyone of any faith to make claims based on said faith to those who don’t share that faith and expect the other party to just remain silent on the issue. Me not agreeing with you isn’t me being intolerant and it isn’t offensive unless someone (who emailed me yesterday) wants it to be.

          I am not judging you, I am not even judging your opinion, frankly I am saying that EVEN IF I SHARED IT, that politically I would still have the same stance. I wonder if you get that? If I was a die hard a believer as you, if I though homosexuality was a sin against God, etc. Well, guess what I would still not be for making gay marriage illegal. How? My faith or lack there of should not be used to compel others with force of the state. IF your church believes gay marriage is sinful your pastor can tell you that weekly if he wants, you can choose to never sanction a gay marriage in your church etc. Your church’s business should not be the state’s just as the state’s business should not be your church’s business.

          Now you will tell me you have every right to vote with your faith in mind, not only do I agree I have no issue with it. Frankly if we actually followed the Constitution it would be moot anyway. To deny a right to a segment of our society is clearly unconstitutional.

        • Jamie Skelton

          @Modern Survival
          If you re-read every word I’ve written you won’t find one place I am wanting to legislate Christianity. Just because I know homosexuality to be destructive does not mean I want laws to stop it because I know it can’t anymore than gun control laws keep criminals from using them.

          I am in total agreement with you on keeping the state and the church from mixing. I am fully aware of what evils result from that. Having studied much about Nazi Germany — I’m aware that using Christianity was exactly how Hitler duped the Christians into supporting him. He used them right up until he hanged or gassed them. I see the same thing happening now with politicians using Christians/Christianity. I am not one of the “Christian Right Moral Majority” blah blah blah—I’m ashamed of that–but I still love them. They are my brothers and sisters and I make mistakes too.

          I think you haven’t understood my points at all. I realize that clarity is not a strong point for me, but my first comments earlier in the week were not about legislating Christianity.

          I was stating that what people do in their bedrooms *does* affect me and others. Maybe not directly, today, but eventually it does. I know you don’t believe that, but at the same time you do believe that what people do in their gardens eventually affects you. Like Insidious said, no man is an island unto himself. If Monsanto is allowed to take control of seed in their laboratories, will that eventually affect you?

          I am not concerned so much with preventing homosexuals from getting married as I am concerned with them knowing the truth about the destructive nature of that lifestyle. I’m not picking on homosexuals here—-I know heterosexuals need to know the truth about being promiscuous as well. But I wonder how many men having sex with men know that they make up 2% of the population and 63% of new HIV cases. I’m terrible at math, but I’m pretty sure that if homosexuality continues this upward trend—um we are going to have a serious epidemic to deal with just as they are already in D.C. These are facts that people deserve to know. If my child contracts this disease–you can be sure I want to do everything in my power to raise awareness–to make it known that we may be hurting other innocent people with our personal choices.

          The MEDIA is responsible for pretending the link between homosexuality and AIDS is outdated. And you know why. It’s evil. Those who pretend to care for them really want them dead.

          Also, why should homosexuals seek to involve the state in what they do, anyway. Isn’t trying to “legislate homosexuality” the exact same thing as trying to legislate Christianity? All systems of law are SOMEONES moral system. The question is–whose does it get to be? Thinking that it can just be a smorgasbord of Joe, Tom, Debbie, Sue and a million others is an impossibility.

          With that said–I am still not arguing for a marriage of church and state. I think you’ve automatically assumed that, because it’s where many Christians do make the mistake of seeking change.

          I can’t tell you how many Christians I personally know that don’t know JACK-DIDDLEY SQUAT about what the Bible says, so they are easily led astray–like the sheep that we are… They are keeping tradition more than being true followers of Jesus Christ. But the mistakes that we Christians make doesn’t cancel out Truth. In Truth, it is a CURSE for Christians to be under the law. Our obedience, gratitude, love, etc… is supposed to be motivated by love, not because a LAW said we must do XYZ or because we fear punishment for breaking the law..

          The point I think you missed in my last post is that you are wrong in your assumption that Christians can only use the Bible to explain what they believe. Or that we only use “my faith leads me to believe…” I may have referred to Romans 1 once, but that was to explain that the Bible / Jesus Himself uses what we CAN see in creation. I could write a book on the ways I see the Bible/the Truth of Jesus Christ revealed in nature.

          As hard to follow as I am–I believe I made the point that I don’t believe I have some magical power to convince you of Truth anymore than I could raise you from the dead. That is something reserved for God alone. I’m not at all under the impression that you share my beliefs or that if I keep on and keep on and keep on, you’ll change your mind. God Himself doesn’t even teach us to do that.

          BTW—do you know a good rabbit deterrent besides traps, a .22, dogs or cayenne/garlic pepper spray?

    • Modern Survival

      @Jamie blaming gays for Aids, really dude, really? Fricken really? Wow that is so outdated and gays didn’t create AIDS, seriously not in any way. AIDS spread from the GREEN MONKEY to men, I will leave it at that and you can think of something far more disgusting then gay people doing what they do.

      Now on this, “If it were true, then why are there so many within the homosexual community pushing the public school system to indoctrinate MY children on this issue? ”

      First who are these people? I have never met a gay person, discussed politics and heard this as one of their goals, not once. Sounds to me like your beef is with the PUBLIC SCHOOL SYSTEM, not gay people. Are there any other things in the system of public education that your children are being indoctrinated with that you also oppose, are some far worse then the acceptance of another child with two daddies?

      It has also long ago been proven a myth that children of gay parents turn into molesters and long ago been proven a myth that openly gay men turn into molesters at any higher a rate then strait men. Frankly it is almost always latent homosexuals that can’t admit what they are that molest same sex victims.

      Oh on that note many molesters are men that molest little girls is their crime any less disgusting, would you hesitate to put a bullet if you could into a man that molested a child be that child male or female, does it even matter, is the molester not a complete piece of shit either way, doesn’t he deserve a dirt nap either way.

      Every argument you brought up is either misdirected anger or simply not backed up by any facts at all. With AIDS gays got the worst of it early on due to the fact that they had a lot of unprotected sex, gross yes but why didn’t promiscuous heterosexuals get hit as hard, because they had better morality or because before AIDS became an epidemic they were simply more likely to use a condom? Do you really think a disease judges morality?

      The school stuff, again this is a problem with a system not with gay people, again I have never met a gay person really concerned with the curriculum in our schools. No those are socialists not gays pushing that fricken agenda, all most gay people want is acceptance, equal rights under the law and to be left alone.

      Molesters, plenty of strait molesters and rapists out there isn’t there. How many men outside of the prison system (another state failure) worry about being raped by another man, do you really want to tell me because men can fight back? Do you really want to tell me no gay man exists that can kick your ass or mine?

      Sorry bud but FREEDOM IS DOING WHAT EVER YOU WANT SO LONG AS YOU DON’T HARM ANOTHER. All your points are staw men, you can’t show me anyway in hell that Dan and Tom or Sue and Debby marrying will do you harm, you can’t blame them for AIDS and you can’t blame them for a public education system that is an abysmal failure on far more levels then the one area you pointed out.

      • Jamie Skelton

        GEEE—hold your fire!
        First, I’m not a dude = )
        I don’t know where to even begin un-twisting everything you just turned my comments into.

        You can get some facts from here: http://www.cdc.gov/hiv/topics/msm

        Outdated? Really?

        Nothing I wrote was written in anger. I care for homosexuals which is why I want them to know the truth. Stating facts and “blaming” are not the same thing.

        As to the issue on making school children (and all of society) accept homosexuality as an acceptable lifestyle) you write:
        “Never met a gay person, discussed politics, and heard this as one of their goals?”

        What? DUDE? REALLY? FRICKEN REALLY?

        Google it.

        On the public school system: I didn’t realize I needed to include AAAALL the other failures to make the point that “What happens in my bedroom doesn’t hurt anyone else” is a LIE when what they do must be included in the school curriculum for everybody to make us “TOLERANT”.
        Then why don’t we do the same for pedophiles?

        Whoa—-Not making any moral judgments now are we?

        The person who claims to be all about their fellow man sure easily turns abusive towards people who respectfully comment about their beliefs. Just disappointed that you can’t discuss things respectfully.

        Thanks for all the good advice on homesteading anyway.

        • Jamie Skelton

          I’m sorry–”abusive” was NOT the right word. I sincerely apologize.

          I should have just said that it is you with the misdirected anger.

        • Modern Survival

          That was the most incoherent post ever on TSP!

        • Jamie Skelton

          How about those facts?

        • :-) – @Jamie, your post reminds me of a Canadian friend of mine who goes crazy every time Piers Morgan ‘debates’ someone about gun control (he’s ‘pro-control’)

          On schools and sexuality..

          There is a difference between teaching ‘human beings practice this behavior’ (education) and teaching what is ‘correct’ or ‘acceptable’ behavior (indoctrination).

          Most people aren’t arguing for freedom from indoctrination (libertarianism) they’re arguing that THEIR indoctrination should be taught.

          As for ‘tolerance’.. when living in a diverse society, tolerance is a necessary virtue.

          The only way to reduce its need, is to reduce diversity, and there are only a few ways to do that:
          1) Convert the ‘different’ (reeducation..in the soviet sense)
          2) Punish the ‘different’ (drive them underground)
          3) Evict the ‘different’ (banishment)
          4) Kill the ‘different’

          Which one are you in favor of? ;-)

          P.S. Jack gets shouty sometimes.. don’t take it personally, he’s just kind of a passionate person.

          ;-)

        • Modern Survival,

          Who are you debating here?

          It really appears that you have taken what Jamie said and blown it way out of proportion to argue a point that she wasn’t trying to make.

          Why would you pile all of your feelings into one attack on someone who was just trying to engage in a conversation. I really think you owe Jamie an apology for over-reacting.

          How about finding some common ground to start with and lead her to a better conclusion.

          You attract more flies with honey than vinegar.

        • @Jamie (darn hiding reply button!) -
          Your solution would be #1 ‘Conversion’ (the real internal kind).

          #2 I should have probably labeled ‘law’.. as its ‘the appearance of agreement via the threat of punishment’ (the dark ages.. Spanish inquisition style ‘conversion’)

          #1 should have been #2.5 (brain washing style conversion)

          In a best to worst order..

          yes. text can be a poor communication medium. :-)

        • Tolerance is NOT endorsement or agreement. Nor does it preclude the possibility of judgement.

          You can be tolerant of another’s beliefs, while believing whole-heartedly that they are completely wrong.

          Intolerance implies persecution, not disagreement.

        • Modern Survival

          Wise words! Jamie you can believe it and you can speak it what you shouldn’t do is use force (law) to enforce it on others that don’t share your beliefs. Law should protect rights and freedoms, not impose my belief on you or your belief on me.

        • @Jamie -
          The ‘correct’ response to a ‘If you don’t do/believe X then you’re a Y’ is a polite chuckle.

          :-)

          Labels don’t stick to me.

    • AIDS was created by the government and it is not even clear it really exists in the way you are told it does, however promotion of homosexuality is clearly a liberal issue of the far left and it’s a wedge issue and it stands in stark contrast against social conservatism and seeks to attack it. There is like an indoctrination and evidence or thinking counter to it is usually attacked or suppressed these days. You are not allowed to even think that it may be wrong, if you do think that way you are a hater and categorized in with people who want to lynch or kill people and the implication is you are sick and dangerous. I think it is scary where that type of thinking could lead to. Sure there are people who do violent things to gays, but that doesn’t mean that everyone who thinks a certain way must be one of them. Many people also try to be politically correct, but when you get to know them or analyze their thinking, in reality they are not comfortable with their own thinking. People will say things like people can do whatever they want, but clearly dislike it that they are coming in droves to their state just to get married. They may be uncomfortable that their son is gay, they may not want to talk about that their father or friend experimented with bisexuality. There’s plenty of people who experimented with bisexuality who think what they did themselves was wrong, but even those people have to be censored when they decided they needed to reform themselves. No they are wrong, maybe they should embrace such things, but people who think that way deep down seem to not really care about it or in reality they want to label that person as a phobic person which is just a put down.

      You can hear that all these rights are taken away in regards to the 4th amendment, people are killed over seas, we are now at war, a drone attacked civilians, and hardly anyone takes notice, but if the issue is gay marriage or something, people take to the streets in droves.

      I think men and women are naturally different. They are not the same, and it’s a good thing that they are not the same. There’s such a thing as yin and yang and the balance of yin and yang.

    • There was another one I forgot about, someone I know. She often has to mention her support for gay rights, yet how ironic that she dated someone for awhile and found out he was bisexual. A van full of guys would show up at night once in awhile and off he would go with them, She could no longer bring herself to go out with him anymore because he was sleeping with men. Her son has been in a gay relationship for many years, yet he has doubts about his orientation and has talked about it with his partner. The partner does not have the same doubts. At times her son had tried to date women. These types of things go on, yet the media won’t talk about them. Obviously the fact that I am even mentioning any of this is evidence that I must hate people or that in reality I am gay, so I should just shut up and not say anything, that is the mindset that goes on on the far left.

    • IMO (there it is again)

      Within the discussion on Libertarianism..

      The state should not be telling people what is ‘true’ (beliefs). Unfortunately, most people think that what they believe is ‘true’. And that since it is true, others should believe it also.

      This immediately becomes ‘not believing what I believe (and therefore acting how I act) is not only wrong.. its dangerous! And therefore we must make laws to stop people from doing X.’

      If you look at the base emotion being expressed.. its fear. A fear born of pride (I KNOW what is ‘true’).

      IMO Libertarianism takes a different approach, one of humility. It says ‘I think this is true, but I don’t know for sure, and I certainly wouldn’t want to force my tentative opinion on others’.

      All I can say is, fear comes from inside, you have to go inside and really look at it, understand it, and make friends with it, if you want to feel peace. No new law, or expanded stockpile of guns will do it.

      On Education:
      The question is, for a healthy individual (and therefore a healthy society) what should be taught, and who should teach it?

      A more difficult question IMO.. are the parents or the community responsible for determining the ‘what’?

      I say this because, yes, you reading this are a ‘responsible’ loving parent, who knows and wants what’s best for your child.. but that’s not true of every parent.

      Tough questions.

      • Modern Survival

        If I ran public education this would be my focus

        A – Reading, if a person can read they can learn whatever they want to know.

        B – Writing, if a person can write they can express what they have learned so others may evaluate it.

        c – Math, not complex calcalus we force on kids and tell them they will need some day and KNOW DAMN well we are lying about it. Basic mathematics, (my dear aunt sally) for those that know that mnemonic device. With basic math you gain logic and understanding.

        D – Fundamental History, not opinion just facts, who we are, how we got here, the mistakes we made on the way and flatly just what happened so we have context as to where we are.

        E – Scientific Principles, the scientific method not scientific consensus based on government funding. Basic physics on how things function and work. Simple chemistry and a basic understanding of the laws of motion, energy, thermodynamics and gravity. The basic components of biology, how living things function and how they reproduce.

        Friends, that is about all any human being needs to learn before they begin to self direct their learning. I think it goes without saying computers should be part of things today but trust me most kids can use a PC better then most of us anyway.

        Key is do you know how long it would take to teach children those things?

        Well first you get rid of kindergarten! It isn’t needed, it serves only the purpose of teaching kids to do what they are told, sit still, etc.

        You start 1st grade at say age 7 and you have 5 years of formative schooling. So kids get out of 5th grade at age 12.

        From there they should be largely self directing their learning. It would be amazing how much a child would learn in those 5 years if we spent that time just teaching them to learn.

        • Robert Selzler

          To juicy not to comment, Jack. : )

          Your five point plan is basically a simple liberal arts curriculum, which has been proven effective. The only point that I would bring up is that “the mistakes we made on the way” is often exactly opinion; for example, ask an Austrian economists for the facts of how we are in this economic crisis and you’ll get one story, but a Keynesian will have an entirely different opinion of the mistakes that were made. Small point, but important.

          Overall, as an educator I agree with the sentiment of this post. I won’t string out my qualifications, but suffice it to say that there is research and smarter people than me who agree with exactly what you are saying here. Check out the work by Dr. Sugata Mitra who has been been looking into self-directed learning for a while now. TED talk here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ks8D3WE-PbM.

        • Modern Survival

          Oh but see we don’t need to tell people what was a mistake and what wasn’t when you accurately present the facts individuals quickly use logic to see the mistakes for themselves.

    • Robert Selzler

      From a Christian standpoint, I would respectfully disagree, though sadly I am in the minority. We (believers) ought to be, I am convicted, pushing for deregulation of marriage. From a biblical standpoint, marriage is the domain of God (today, his body, the church), not the government. Why have we let any earthly government hijack this institution?

      I agree with fellow-believer Norman Horn in his analysis of this “issue” over at libertarianchristians.com (direct link: http://libertarianchristians.com/faq/#faq_5). I hope that gives you something to think about.

      • @Robert -
        IMO
        The states involvement with marriage has nothing to do with morality, it has to do with property disputes.

        In the eyes of the state, a marriage is a legal partnership, with each state having its own laws regarding the details of said partnership.

        A simple way to ‘get the state out of marriage’ would be to have no such ‘boilerplate’ partnership agreement. But this would mean that anyone entering into a ‘marriage’ (of the church kind) would not have any ‘rights’ at the dissolution of the marriage.. and of course said dissolution would also not be within the realm of legality (there would be no ‘evidence’ of dissolution in a legal sense).

        So, if a couple decides to go their separate ways.. who gets the stuff? And if there is a dispute, who decides who gets the stuff? The church? (and what exactly does that mean? the pastor? the congregation?)

        I’m sure you can think of all sorts of ways that could go wrong.

        So the issue (from the perspective of the community) is a dispute over property (including children!).

        How, in your system, would you handle that?

        • Robert Selzler

          Thanks for the reply. I think you mistake my intent. My aim would be for marriage, in a truly libertarian society, to lose all legal ramifications: no tax breaks, no de-facto liberties, nada.

          “The states involvement with marriage has nothing to do with morality, it has to do with property disputes.”

          Agreed. I was speaking from a religious perspective in the last post, which is about prudence of the believer, to a fellow believer ( I assume). I make no attempt to push that upon non-believers by secular extension. Further, the state (libertarian-style) would stay out of moral matters; it would only intervene in protection of a person’s rights.

          “So, if a couple decides to go their separate ways.. who gets the stuff? ”

          The same way non-married couples resolve this issue right now. People need not be married to own property or reproduce (he says in jest). They would, therefore, retain their property, up to and including their own bodies. Children, however, are not property. Well, from a libertarian perspective, they are their own property, but they’ve been entrusted to the care of a steward: their parents. I digress.

          “And if there is a dispute, who decides who gets the stuff? The church? (and what exactly does that mean? the pastor? the congregation?)”

          This is blending the theological aspects of Christian marriage and the legal aspects of a secular “marriage” contract. My argument is that the two have become unnecessarily entwined. Since I am sure that you really don’t want to argue polity and practice from a theological perspective, I’ll address your former question.

          To get a clearer picture of what I am saying, let’s remove the church from the picture. Let’s say that my male partner and I wanted some sort of community recognition of our relationship. We could then approach a group (say an RC car club) for this sort of ceremony/status. They could either accept of reject our proposal as they see fit. This is exactly the way it would work with a religious group, too. They are just another group and their recognition of my partner and my status is completely up to them and without legal ramification.

          The problem that I believe you have identified is that we (society) are implying that married people have extra rights. Jack recently touched (astutely, I might add) that there is no such thing as minority rights, gay rights, straight rights, or circus clown rights; there are only human rights. Similarly, when one weds, he does not somehow get additional rights. Therefore, the owner of any property would “get the stuff.” If there were a dispute, they would sue to appeal to a court to resolve that dispute; I am in no way implying that any church has any authority over legal matters the way a court does.

        • Modern Survival

          See I disagree, let’s take kids off the table for step one.

          So say you and I had a house together, platonicly of course! We live together for 10 years and co mingle finances and purchases and after 10 years decide to part company right? Now we disagree on who gets what, who leaves, who owes whom for certain things. We have two choices

          1. Resolve the dispute

          2. See arbritration

          The same as a married couple except the court will judge the facts not use a “boiler plate” so we are less likely to end up in court and more likely to be reasonable but if it can’t be done the court can be sought if 3rd party arbitrators fail. The issue of property dispute doesn’t need a marriage contract to be decided in court. Point one done.

          Point Two kids!

          Fathers and mothers have inherent rights and responsibilities to their children as to custody, providing for needs, etc. None of these are subject to marriage. It simply doesn’t apply! Two people who never marry, have kids and cohabitate in a state without common law marriage will be treated the same in regard to custodial rights and responsibilities as those who are married by the state.

          It doesn’t apply. No marriage contract is necessary for a state to resolve custody issues if parents can’t do it.

          All the formal marriage contract and marriage laws have done is make it easier to get courts involved with decided upside for one party to do so. And we wonder why divorce rates are so high?

        • @Robert & @Jack (no reply button) -

          Good point on the ‘extra rights’.. which kind of points out the primary problem with non-libertarian governments.. EVERY group is constantly seeking ‘extra rights’.

          I don’t disagree with your points about non-contractual partnerships.. but it did make me think of a couple of things..

          - Dispensation of non-contractual partnership assets is at the whim of the presiding judge.
          - In our present system, he with the most money (or power) gets the most ‘justice’

          I mention this because in a partnership dissolution.. if one party can ‘seize’ the assets at the beginning of the dispute.. he can get ‘better’ justice.

          There’s another thing I’m not quite grasping.. in theory, all laws should be ‘protective’ in nature.. either protecting the individual, or the whole (society).

          In other words, laws should be ‘preservative’.

          But any law granting ‘extra rights’ is ‘reductive’.. as it makes ‘less’ (by comparison) the rights of everyone else, and therefore by definition unjust.

          So, I guess for libertarianism, we need seek only ‘justness’ to determine if a law/principle is sound.

        • Modern Survival

          Keep in mind that nothing would prevent people getting married from writing their own contracts of marriage. Today we call them prenuptial agreements. Remove the boiler plate and instead of being seen as “untrusting protectionism” it would be seen as a pragmatic agreement.

          When people say that only the untrusting do a prenup I simply ask who do you trust more to define the parameters of your marriage the state or you and your spouse?

      • Modern Survival

        See and that is my real point. For Christians (and I am not one to be clear and fair here) state sanctioned marriage is basically polygamy! Why? Because it is a three party marriage! Most Christians it seems have never considered this or even thought about the implications of this. Sam and Debby get married in Texas they go get a license for this marriage. Well, that means they have to get PERMISSION from the state, the state then has powers to do things inside their relationship. Hence Debby, Sam and the State of Texas are now married as a union!

        When Debby and Sam move to Oklahoma and become residents there the marriage with Texas ends and now they are married to Oklahoma! Wow basically a divorce and a remarriage inside a polygamist marriage.

        Do you guys get in this so called “traditional marriage” that your contract is between you, your spouse and the state? Do you REALLY GET THAT when you talk about “traditional marriage”?

        With all that in mind I would love to hear defense of STATE controlled marriage from a christian view. NOTE – leaving gay marriage totally out of it, how would you defend the state being part of your martial union, having power over it and the ability to use force to exert their will on your union, the fact the contract can be changed by the state without consent, the fact that the contract changes if you move to another state an the fact that you have to ask the state for permission to get married?

        Again taking gay marriage off the table how does anyone as a Christan defend state controlled marriage with all of the above considerations?

        • Robert Selzler

          I hope I am following the reply structure enough so that my ignorance isn’t flaunted to the world, but I have to ask: was this in response to me? I hope I didn’t come off as defending state involvement in marriage. In fact, I advocate the opposite.

          When I was married (and still a Republican :/ ), it miffed me that I had to get a marriage licence from the State of Idaho. It implied, to me, that they could say no. What business was it of theirs that my wife and I, two consenting adults, wanted to get married? It seems downright feudal that our “lords” could make we the peasants beg them for the privilege of marriage. It just plain pissed me off, to be crude.

  6. About the battered wife: You could just put together a proposal to open a shelter and showcase it to the people of the community. If they think that the service you provide is worth whatever money you need then you can still open your shelter. I’d bet a lot of people would willingly give some money for this, especially if they weren’t paying so much money in taxes. I know I would. I don’t think such a resource would go away.

    • Ronnie in Iowa ~Veronica Deevers

      The shelter in this area in located through our local YWCA. The current oligarchical regime has slashed funds to all shelters and without immediate donations it will highly likely close making the closest one 90+ miles from here. If that had been true when I needed help, I most likely would not be sitting here writing this right now. I would not have gone and the outcome would have been the quite dire. Thankfully that was not the case and the precious advocates helped me to understand how and why women (AND men…men are abused too) become trapped in borderline personality disorder/co-dependent relationships. Because of this knowledge and further education on the subject, I am now able to help others through and out of their situations.

      Running a shelter is a very serious venture. Often times the abuser (BPD) will do almost anything to get at their victim (co-D) so security is a must. Shelters are also used to safely house witnesses for court that would otherwise be silenced much in the same way the gov’t silences people they don’t want out walking around & talking. Dead men tell no tales. There are also children involved in many cases.

      The shelter I resided in for 3 months has 3 bunk beds per room. There is a common room and community type (gym room) shower and RR. There is a large day care operation specifically for the children. There are legal advocates which accompany the women to court so that they do not have to go alone.

      I could go on for quite some time but you are getting the picture I hope. It is no easy task in creating another shelter that is safe, secure, has child care, adequate RR/showers, laundry facilities, a kitchen, etc etc etc. Often there are not enough beds in our shelter and cots have to be used. As the financial situations grow worse, abuse will continue to rise. And sadly, most women go back to their abusers.

      Surely there must be a way for shelters to be self sustaining so that they can be free of gov’t dependency. If any of you have ideas, please share them.

      Thanks for your care and concern on this issue.

      Ronnie in Iowa

      • Ronnie,
        First off, I wish you the best of luck with what you’re doing.

        In the current system, with so many regulations, licenses, and bills to pay – there still has to be a way to generate income in order to pay those things. Getting the shelter off as many of those government ties as possible would be one goal, and creating a way to generate income would be a secondary goal (for the things you can’t break away from).
        If you look at the shelter from a point of homesteading (just with many families instead of one family), it might give you some ideas on how you can accomplish these things.

        So, let’s say you must pay for city water. Can you offset or eliminate that cost by drilling a well and using your own water? Would it make sense in the long run to move the shelter to a location where you would have your own well, to eliminate that cost?

        You pay for electricity. Is there a way the shelter can generate some or all of its own electricity to offset or eliminate that cost?
        I would spend time looking up solar panel companies, writing to them and explaining about the project, and asking if they’d be willing to donate solar panels for the roof in exchange for having their name mentioned (like on a plaque by the front door, and by calling the local news to come cover it when the panels are installed) as a sponsor? Be sure to tell them that their donations are tax deductible, and they can also feature their donations and help in their own sales literature and on their website.
        Same thing with companies that sell small solar generators or other power generators. Would they be willing to donate some product in exchange for the same things?
        Are there items used frequently that are currently electric, which could be switched out for hand-crank items donated by those companies? For example, in the kitchen, you could have a hand-crank blender or mixer. You could ask Country Living Grain Mill if they’d be willing to donate a mill to the shelter (even a refurbished one), and then have the shelter buy wheat, rather than flour – that would save on costs. (You might be able to get a local grain mill or farmer to donate the wheat.)

        Are there companies such as a geothermal heating company that would be willing to donate a system to reduce or eliminate your heating bills? Could you and the ladies, and a host of volunteers actually build mass rocket heaters yourselves to accomplish this?

        Your kitchen runs on either electricity or natural gas, which of course has a monthly bill. Perhaps you could talk to the guys at Stove Tec and see if they’d donate a few rocket stoves for you to use in the backyard or on the patio. Ask a local tree cutting service to drop off their tree trimmings to use to fuel those.
        You could ask the folks from the Sun Oven to donate some solar ovens, and/or build solar ovens from items the community donates to you or that you can glean from the local dump and/or habitat for humanity project.
        That would greatly help reduce the costs that come out of the kitchen.

        How much room do you have to produce your own food? Again, in the long run, would it be worth it to move the shelter to a new location where you would have room to do that? (I’d say yes, in every case. You might even be able to get an elderly person to gift you with their home and land when they pass on.)
        To reduce the costs of feeding the residents, anything the shelter can produce itself would go a long way towards reducing costs and making it self-sufficient. You could get donated seeds. You could ask for donations of chickens, rabbits, and quail. You could get local farmers and homesteaders to donate some compost to get you started, and pallet companies to donate a few of those so you can build your own compost bins.
        Not only would it reduce cost, it would be teaching the residents a different way of providing for themselves and giving them actual skills.

        Any over-production in the shelter’s garden could be sold at a local farmer’s market to help generate income.
        Given a large enough piece of land, the shelter itself could become a CSA (community supported agriculture), selling shares in exchange for weekly produce/meat/eggs.

        What kind of things could the ladies make to sell and generate income for the shelter to pay its bills?
        Even if the ladies coming in have NO skills, those can so easily be taught. I am sure that people LIKE Jack, or David Canterbury, or Marjory Wildcraft would be willing to come in and hold a class on how to do X. (Not saying those people specifically, but people will skills like that.)
        The ladies could bake breads to sell. They could make handmade soaps to sell. Given a herd of breeding rabbits, they could make hats, pillows, blankets, etc out of the pelts.
        With a donated dehydrator or food saver type vacumning system (like the pressure canner vacumn system Jack did a video on a week or two ago), the ladies could dehydrate and package up dried foods to sell; like soup mixes. They could do mixes in a jar and sell those (soups, cookie mixes, hot chocolate mixes, all kinds of things).

        Could you acquire a bunch of computers? Nothing fancy, just able to run a word processing program like Word. (Again, donations.)
        If so, I’m sure you could find someone willing to come in and teach the ladies how to do data entry. Now they not only have a marketable skill, but the shelter can hire itself out as a data entry service.

        Given a few decent shredders, the shelter could hire itself out as a document shredding service; and as a bonus, you could use the shredded documents in the compost for the shelter’s garden.

        There is a facility in Hampton Roads, Virginia for mentally challenged and disabled people that does services like this for local businesses. It’s called Eggleston Services and you could get a LOT of ideas from looking at what they do to generate income:
        http://www.egglestonservices.org/

        Again, look at the shelter itself not as a big brick building housing desperate people. Look at it as a potential homestead full of people who, given the right instruction, could learn skills that both support the homestead and empower them personally to support themselves when they leave.
        Just by changing that perception, you might be able to take the shelter in an entirely new direction and put it on the road to self-sufficiency.

        Best of luck!

      • Ronnie in Iowa ~Veronica Deevers

        Carrie,

        Thank you for your wonderful suggestions! I plan to copy/paste your entire piece into an email for the director of the Y.

        Our shelter is located in a congested downtown area. There is no yard and I doubt fire regulations would allow for the use of certain outdoor cooking aids. There is no yard of any kind.

        In this set of circumstances, safety of the women is #1. Anyone who wishes to get to the shelter itself must go through the front desk at the Y. The receptionist rings the advocates in the shelter. IF this person is expected, the advocate will come down and escort that person to the locked facility (women can exit but not enter until an advocate escorts them in. The door is locked from the outside at ALL times). Some abuse cases are so severe that their attackers will do just about anything to get at them and think nothing of harming anyone else in the process. Sometimes the woman needs this much protection if the man is being taken to court on higher charges, such as attempted murder. Even if he is in jail, he may have a relative who could be a sympathizer and attack the woman. It happens. Protection is #1. There cannot be a building out in the open which would leave women (and children) vulnerable in any way. This is a lot more complex than people realize.

        As women do recover, the may need public transit to get to a job and that is readily available in an inner city location. When I left the shelter I had only a change of clothes and a bag of toiletries that the shelter provides you with when you leave (all items are donations). It’s rough starting all over with nothing but I had the one most vital thing to do that with and that was MY LIFE. So I guess I passed Jack’s survival test, eh? :)

        Blessings,
        Ronnie

  7. It strikes me that there is fair amount of government regulation in forcing transparency across society. The nuanced detail of doing so is far more complex than appears at first blush. What is or is not legitimately a trade secret that need not be disclosed in a million different situations? It’s a slippery slope, and that’s where the creep of regulation starts. At a reasonable place, that seemingly needs more and more definition as time goes by.

    Thinking about Libertarian philosophy more generally, a truly libertarian society, or even a just society, needs to do away with corporations (which is not necessarily to say businesses). The purpose a corporation is to shield the owners from individual liability from the harm to others/the Earth/society at large they cause in the course of their business. It’s nothing more than privatized gains and socialized losses.

    That said, overall, I find myself creeping toward Libertarianism, if for no other reason than how pervasive the law of unintended consequences is (we try to solve a genuine problem, the solution creates a new set of incentives which people inevitably exploit, leading to a new problem … student loans are an example).

    The issue I struggle with the most is environmental protection. Saying that I can sue is insufficient to say the least. No amount of money can compensate for destroying the Earth with pollution (and there may even be no money to be had from the guilty parties), it’s difficult to prevent the harm in the first place under such a system, and monied interests can buy their desired outcome by spending you into submission (then again, just try living in a society where there was no financial barrier to the courthouse) or by writing the laws in their favor in the first place.

    On the other hand, I’m more and more aware of the fact that a large portion of the harm being done to the Earth is coming from government regulation, not being prevented by it, due to both regulatory capture and the afore mentioned law of unintended consequences.

    • I think you hit the nail on the head by saying that there should be no corporations. I have only recently begun thinking this way. I think if you want to do business you should not begin if your first thought is to hide behind a corporate entity. If you are in business you should stand behind your word and not try to dodge liability.

      I mean if one of the first things you do when you start a business is to do it under an assumed name… then maybe you are up to something you shouldn’t be. I mean what are you hiding right?

      • Modern Survival

        Doing business as a Corp isn’t bad in and of itself. Many things are part of it, legal protections are NOT what most people think they are. Mostly you do a DBA (doing business as) for branding anyway. Corps are not the problem the regulations that favor mega corps are.

        • Yes, I agree, somewhat, except I believe that the centralized power in the corporation gave the entity enough power/money to buy the regulations that favored them getting larger and out of control. I think you can have all the GOOD benefits of a corp. without centralized power. I don’t believe that anonymity is a GOOD benefit.

          A DBA is your right almost completely about branding, although I believe that some people use it to hide behind, it just depends on your moral character.

          A person of high moral standards like yourself will make that branding part of there own character as well as make your character part of your branding. Your Survival Podcast is the perfect example of that.

          We need more companies that stand behind their brand, instead of hiding behind it.

    • IMO

      Environmental protection is not incompatible with Libertarianism, as someone polluting the environment is causing harm to others.

      As for suing not being adequate..

      We really need to stop thinking in terms of ‘money’ when we’re deciding what to do, or what can be done. Money, despite what the FED and our government would have us believe, is not the source of all solutions. And the lack of it is not the source of all of our problems.

      The fact that we, the people, believe that egregious lie, got us to where we’re at.

      ‘They’ can only buy their way into X, if someone is willing to do what they want for some of that ‘money’. The problem is not of money, its of character.

      No matter how much ‘money’ you offer me I will not dump a barrel of toxic waste into a river. Not because its ‘illegal’ but because I believe its WRONG.

      Laws cannot, and should not, replace morals.

      [A libertarian society to survive would, by necessity, require moral citizens]

  8. “I mean if one of the first things you do when you start a business is to do it under an assumed name… then maybe you are up to something you shouldn’t be. I mean what are you hiding right?”
    BarnGeek, your above statement is extremely offensive to millions of business owners who risk everything they have to start a small business and then work in that business many, many hours every day and give everything they have to trying to make it successful. You obviously are unaware of the legal and tax complications associated with starting and running a small business. There is no option in our current environment but to operate under some form of a corporation or other legal structure. Millions of people running small businesses have the utmost integrity and want to do a wonderful job of providing a service or product that meets a need. To imply that someone starting a business as a corporation has lack of integrity or willful intent to hurt others is rude and absolutely unacceptable.

    • I apologize Bob, I was being a little sarcastic to prove a point which I failed to clarify so I apologize for that. In fact I am one of those millions of entrepreneurs whom you are referring to.

      First let me clarify, I was referring to the fact that SOME use a corporation to hide behind, for protection from being held personally responsible for their conduct in business.

      Before I started thinking this way I myself had an LLC and I found absolutely zero tax or legal benefits of having it. It just seemed to be extra paperwork, maybe I am missing something but I just find it odd that in modern society people assume that you have to be some sort of entity other than yourself to do business.

      Why not just do business as yourself? Other than branding why would you need an assumed name?

  9. Ronnie in Iowa ~Veronica Deevers

    Oh Jack….I detest being on SSDI. Five doctors put in their reports with the application for SSDI that I could never ever go back to my job. I was approved on my first application for SSDI. Few are. Those who aren’t are given BACK PAY from the first day they applied if they are approved at a later date.

    I just recently had my 6th surgery on my R foot trying to keep it attached to the leg. I’ve had 11 orthopedic surgeries and 5 other surgeries, one being cancer which I obviously did survive. Once you’re on disability it’s like the mark of Cain! No one wants to hire you. I live in poverty and a constant state of worry. I would LOVE to go back to being an ordinary tax slave.

    Sadly, many people are on SSDI that do NOT deserve to be. They suck the system for all that they can get. I know of one woman who is on it because she’s DEPRESSED. Her mom was mean to her when she was little and she just can’t handle life so some psychiatrist is drugging her, making big bucks off of her and keeps her on SSDI to pad his own pockets. She is physically very fit and completely able to work.

    I have friend who lost her job as a physical therapist due to her own physical health problems. She (a fellow Libertarian) detested the fact that she had to go on SSDI. She worked very hard to find a way to get OFF of SSDI and developed essential oils products with some other folks. She went on SSDI’s back to work program…yes they have one. The day came where she was making enough to leave SSDI and they demanded the full amount she had been paid to be returned in 30 days!!! She found a way to get OFF of SSDI, used THEIR program and was harshly punished for it. She has had to hire attorneys and her battle has been a horror. Her financial crisis from this has been devastating. Since then she has had a very horrific stroke and is no longer able to function very well but is now denied SSDI due to the prior situation. She is now trapped in the (non) medical world of simply being medicated and is so very miserable. How horrible for her. My heart is shattered for her because she is a good, dear, precious person and doesn’t deserve any of this.
    It’s like the lines in your song: I don’t know the answers….it’s like there’s nothing I can do. I guess it’s just the price we pay when we follow all the rules.

    I’ve been listening to you for almost five years. You are my life line to sanity and my hope. I know very well that you did NOT mean to lump everyone on SSDI into one little box because of the assclown who “retired” on it. That’s not you.

    I deeply loved today’s show and have sent the link off to my daughter in deep hope she will listen so she can understand my Libertarian way of thinking. Can’t wait for part two!

    Keep up the good work Jack. Thanks for taking a stand….even on the really rough issues, for having broad shoulders and for always having a tight grip on the sword of truth and holding firmly to the shield of liberty.

    Loveya!
    Ronnie in Iowa :)

  10. Gotta post my thoughts on Marriage.
    My issue with ‘gay marriage’ isn’t that it grosses me out, though as a heterosexual man it does, nor is it that I want the government to enforce my idea of marriage. My point is that the government didn’t create marriage, God did. So the government (or any other group of people or individual) don’t get to define marriage.
    The way I often discuss it is by saying ‘I want to be a bus. I’m going to go into the city, and go from corner to corner. I’m going to pick people up and carry them to their destination.’ But regardless of if I do the things buses do, I’m not a bus. A bus is a defined thing. I don’t get to say that my feelings are hurt because I can’t be a bus and get the federal government to declare that I can be a bus.
    That said, two things come to mind: First, Jack’s point of ‘aren’t there other moral issues you want to do something about that doesn’t get in other peoples business’, is a very good point. Why wasn’t I complaining about the government being involved in marriage when it benefited and agreed with me? Well, I should have been, and will be regardless of the issue from here on out. Second, this in NO way means that I don’t think people who are homosexual shouldn’t be able to live the life that they want to live as long as it ‘neither picks my pocket nor breaks my arm’.
    My faith has something to say on whether that behavior is right or appropriate, but my job isn’t to coerce or force people to agree or ‘behave’, or get the government to do it for me, but to love my neighbor and let truth speak for itself in by and large.
    Hope my opinion makes sense. If it offended you, I think you heard me wrong. If you disagree, well, God bless America, that’s what it’s all about!

    • You guys are saying things that offend people, don’t you know people who are gay may commit suicide if people say things like that ? Somehow implying men kissing is offensive ?

      The libertarian podcast out of New Hampshire was defending people who write books on how to seduce children as protected free speech, or that seems how I remember what they where saying.

      If gay marriage becomes legal, they will probably move on to some other issue to push the envelope. After all that’s what progressive seems to mean – constant change, or if Ozzy bites the head off a bat, then Marylyn Manson has to do something to top that I guess, sort of similar. Perhaps that’s part of human nature I don’t know.

      In ancient Greece, men dated young boys, so I don’t know if it happened before could it happen. People may want to have special rights for sex changes, dating their sister, mother, having sex with animals maybe. More likely if you are out there saying you find it offensive that men may kiss each other, then they may want to pass laws to prevent that kind of hate speech. Maybe they will want more TV programming or ads that promote gay lifestyles.

    • lisapaintergirl

      It’s hard for me to begin to comment- as I’ve been reading all these posts.

      It amazes me when people want THEIR liberties, yet deny it for others. How can you expect your religious freedoms, while denying someone else’s theirs???

      Let’s talk about beliefs (ugh!) So, I believe in the Creator. I am also a christian, because I do believe Christ came and died for sins. ( to clarify- I follow Christ, not the Apostle Paul (and could care less what Paul thinks). I do not have faith in the bible, but in God. I do not believe the collection of books that have been come to be called the Bible are God’s word. God’s words are in there (like the 10 commandments), but there is a whole lotta man’s words there too.

      I am also in a same-sex monogamous relationship of 13 years with someone whom I believe God has divinely appointed me to. How do any of you have the right to deny me something that has NOTHING to do with YOU. Your beliefs are between you and God and so are mine. You don’t get to dictate what you believe God has for my life based on your beliefs. I base what affects my life on MY beliefs-Who are you to determine what is God’s will for my life.

      It annoys me when people talk about LGBT people as if they can’t be themselves AND also be spiritual (or religious). I am a child of God, just as you are, that should be able to practice my religion (which includes the institution of marriage) and a citizen of this state that should be treated equally under the law. If you are a guy and don’t believe in Gay marriage- then don’t marry a dude! Pretty simple.

      I know gay christians that don’t believe in sex before marriage- will you deny them the ability to not fall into what they consider sin because they can never marry? Should they deny who God created them to be and enter a false marriage to someone they are not attracted to because it’s what you think they should do? Should they be forced to live a live of celibacy- even though they don’t have that “gift”? If they go to a church that accepts all people (as Jesus did, BTW). Why should THAT church’s beliefs be restricted by YOUR church’s beliefs? If you want to practice your religion freely, you have to allow others to practice theirs. It’s not liberty if only some have access to it.

      (Side note to a previous post that assumes gay people “have hundreds of partners”) Really? Do you know any gay people or just get your info from tv?There are promiscuous gays, just like there are promiscuous straights. There are monogamous gays, just like straights. We really are just people too. :)

      I want the same things you want- to live a life with the person of my choosing, have and raise a family, and to live in peace. Own land, grow vegetables, plant fruit trees, and not have someone else tell me the way I should do it.

      • Modern Survival

        @Lisa I agree with EVERY WORD you said, beautifully put!

        Let me add though, while I am fine with gays trying to legalize that which should already be legal and frankly think the court might do something useful for once and end this nonsense this time, I don’t think any of you should wait for permission from the state.

        There are plenty of “Churches” that will conduct a ceremony of marriage with out a state license. People like you mentioned should use them, be married and call yourselves and such and frankly fricken DARE anyone to say you are not or treat you as you are not. This is a right, not a privilege none of you should wait for the state to do crap you should take it, claim it and be who you are.

        Before anyone tells me how wrong my stance is, just remember the same words likely apply to YOU over another right and if I was talking about that right you would be cheering me on, REALLY THINK about that folks before you tell another citizen how to live their life.

  11. I do not agree that gay marriage is a constitutional issue. It needs to be kicked back from the Supreme Court and let the people in the states decide; otherwise what is the point of federalism?

    • Modern Survival

      The reason is called, “equal protection under the law”. How fast would you say it was unconstitutional if New Jersey passed a law saying only white people can get married? You do know such laws once existed and federalism was used to try to defend them right? What if Florida say no more news papers? Georgia said the right to warrants before searches doesn’t apply to women? Etc?

      The point of Federalism is that the State is to defer any powers not delegated to it to the people and the states (note upper and lowercase s), they are called to intervene only in areas where they have expressed power OR when the individual rights of the citizens of the republic are violated. It is basic law in this nation that a law should apply to all citizens equally is it not?

      Here is the thing if rights are ACTUALLY IMPORTANT to you,then you must defend them all, not just pick and choose the ones you personally agree with.

      Again I do not think either the states or the State should be in the business of policing marriage at all, yet if they are to do so, it must be done equally to be constitutional in a federal republic where all citizens are to be seen as sovereign, even if they are gay.

    • lisapaintergirl

      Thank you Jack for your voice of reason and AMEN!

    • Perhaps I still do not understand. You are entering race and first amendments arguments into the equation. However, what does gay and lesbian marriage have to do with race? The fourteenth amendment was introduced to protect people of color from being discriminated by government. People have no choice what color or sex they are when they are born. However, I believe people do have a choice on their sexual orientation, but what I think is a moot point. Does the Constitution give us the right to get married, if so, where does it say so?

      • Modern Survival

        Really you believe people have a choice as to their sexual orientation, so you are saying it would be possible for you to choose to be gay? Please answer that one with out double speak or going around the issue I am all ears on this one Mr. Marine?

        If it is a choice you personally could choose it, so tell me could you ever be in a gay relationship. LMAO in the anticipation of the choice to either ignore this or talk around it in advance, I wish I know the code for an emoticon eating popcorn!

        • And I agree.
          But can’t they ultimately say that our personal system of morality is being imposed on them?

          Say there is a man who happens to “like” 10 year old boys and girls. He can make all the arguments for his preferences/ lifestyle/rights/needs for protection and so on… Just because you and I see his sexual orientation as a sickness doesn’t mean that he does.

          I can’t emphasis enough that my personal hope is not in any man-made government, so don’t read that into the following comments…

          While I am *not* for it, it seems hypocritical for people to argue against “legislating morality” when they themselves have a moral system of their own to impose.

          People can still choose or choose not to act according to the instincts they know to be wrong. We all do it every day.

          The other option is to change the way people view the lifestyle in question– to make it acceptable.
          This is why many in this community (like GLTB) find it necessary to indoctrinate school children.

          If homosexuality (once considered an illness) is now acceptable, we can be sure that other preferences are coming down the pipe.

          Hasn’t a libertarian society already been experimented with in this country with what we have today as the end result? Why didn’t it work under the Articles of Confederation if it were possible? I think those people were far more capable of making it work if it were a possibility. They had division, but we have major division now.

        • Modern Survival

          Why do people that insist on bashing gays always do this? Why the need for non starter argument that do not apply and link gays to CRIMINAL BEHAVIOR.

          A grown man that wants sex with a 10 year old boy is a criminal if he tries to act on it NOT because the boy is a boy because HE IS 10! My God is this any less criminal if the 10 year old is a girl. You are talking about RAPE here at a minimum, child abuse, etc. The child cannot consent they are below the age of consent.

          We have laws that cover this that are irrespective of sexual preference. Sex with a child is illegal because it is a child. What a ridiculous argument! It makes you seem very shallow frankly. You sound like rednecks on talk radio saying crap like “if we let them gays get married next thing you know some guy will be marrying his goat”, yes I have heard crap like that. Your point is frankly just as stupid and you are clearly too intelligence to be making such stupid points. So I guess it is just bias and intolerance overriding your common sense?

          And what in the hell does the Articles of Confederation have to do with this and who the hell says they failed anyway, people who want more power getting it doesn’t mean the prior system “failed” it only means it lost and winning contrary to the movies doesn’t mean you are right.

          Gay marriage is only two people both consenting adults choosing to enter into a contract, nothing more, nothing less. It doesn’t harm you and it doesn’t lead to child molestation.

          You know what, this is as insulting to gay citizens as it would be to you IF and note the IF I said, being christian leads to people protesting the funerals of fallen heroes and screaming at their weeping families that their fallen relative is burning in hell. Or being christian leads to bombing abortion centers, or being christian leads to teaching children to pray over a cardboard cut out of George Bush.

          All of those things have been done by self described Christians but I don’t blame or connect other Christians to them, it would be a ignorant thing for me to do so would it not?

          Frankly after what you just said let me refer you to your own book, “You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.”

        • There is always a choice, to say that there is not is to say that there is some sort of predestination for everyone and if that is so than what is the point of liberty, or love, or any ‘good’ choice?

          But, that is the point isn’t it? We prove that we have freedom of choice by the fact that we can even conceive the concept of liberty.

          Freedom of choice seems to be a universally excepted moral to one degree or another. People from all walks of life seem to have a natural tendency to want freedom of choice even if they only want it for themselves.

          God created us in his image, that does not mean some sort of physical resemblance, it means that he created beings with the freedom to choose. If he had not than what good would love, or charity, or kindness, or any virtue be?

          That freedom of choice is also the thing that makes evil possible.

          Now, I am not making a judgment here as to what is right or wrong for any one person. That is not for me or for anyone to decide about anyone else.

        • Why do people insist that it is “bashing gays” for simply *speaking* their understanding that men with men and women with women goes against nature? Look in your garden and at your livestock. Is homosexuality “sustainable”? Sheesh–talk about not seeing the plank in your own eye… =/

          I don’t want homosexuals hung. I don’t want them persecuted. I don’t want them mistreated. Speaking truth is not bashing. Truth is love, contrary to what the media leads us to believe.

          I have CLOSE family and friends that have chosen this lifestyle, so I’m not dealing with this at arm’s length. These are people I dearly love.

          You accuse me of connecting homosexuals to pedophiles, which I didn’t. I made the point (using pedophiles) that you can’t personally pick and choose whose behavior you want to accept/condone and whose you don’t. If you personally can, then you are doing the very thing you dislike in others.

          Yet you connected me to people who bash gays when I do not. I may appeal to their conscience (that what they do goes against nature) but their choices are ultimately left to them.

          It’s ironic that you point out that particular verse–because so many people often quote “Do not judge, lest ye be judged.” The verse you quoted comes directly after–which makes it clear that all judgment is not done away with. It is *hypocritical* judgment that must be removed. Hence the instruction: FIRST remove the hypocrisy– THEN you *can see clearly enough* to help your brother.

        • Modern Survival

          Because people like you want to use your own RELIGIOUS belief to impose your will based on the power of the state and deny equal treatment under the law (which applies to contract law not just criminal law), that is why that is bashing gays, period.

          I never said you or anyone else was wrong for saying you didn’t approve of gay behavior or that you should not be able to call it sin, etc. My problem is NOT with your belief or your right to speak it, only your attempt to enforce.

          Now you most certainly did link gays to pedophiles.

          As for is gay behavior sustainable, really? About 10% of the population is gay, likely has always been gay and our population continues to grow. If gay behavior isn’t sustainable neither is the Catholic Priesthood or Monasteries or Convents as all are based on chastity which is about a reproductive as gay sex. Seriously now the problem is sustainability? If you really think that then don’t worry about the problem it will be self correcting won’t it?

          Again you can criticize gay behavior all you want, you can present your case biblical or other wise that is fine. I don’t and won’t agree but would defend your right to do so rigorously. You don’t have a right to not be told you are wrong for it though, you don’t have a right not to be called a bigot either. It does NOT work that way. But the right to say it, sure you have all the right in the world to that and you have the right to convince anyone that chooses to agree with you.

          The problem is again your desire to use the state to enforce your will. How can you defend this position with equal treatment under the law in consideration? It always comes back to “its not natural”, “it goes against God”, etc but that doesn’t address equal treatment under the law.

      • Does a pedophile choose their sexual orientation?

        • Modern Survival

          I would say no, such a person has a deep mental sickness that overrides a basic instinct.

  12. Jack pointed out a very important fact. The government became involved in marriage when they wrote tax laws and property laws revolving around the union of man and woman. On top of that, there are certain medical rights that arise when a spouse is incapacitated due to injury or illness that the other spouse would need to have legal rights to deal with. I believe that regardless of sexual persuasion, race or religion the rights of the individual should be paramount. Maybe if they called it “domestic partnership” with all the rights of marriage, people wouldn’t be so sensitive. People that choose to dedicate themselves to each other should have all the legal benefits that go along with that union.

    With regards to the safety net, we can see a very clear example of how this net has become a cage. A false sanctuary where people have given up trying to better themselves, in some cases. I found this on zerohedge the same day I enjoyed Jack’s podcast.

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2013-03-26/santelli-stunned-its-better-be-disability-work-minimum-wage

  13. Ronnie in Iowa ~Veronica Deevers

    In regard to the homosexual agenda, I too do not feel this is ‘normal’ behavior but it has been around for centuries…..just like prostitution. The Greeks adored the male body but I won’t get off on that whole subject.

    Homosexual behavior is being promoted to distract us from other issues. It’s a smoke screen. And of course any sympathy the gov’t throws their way is used to parade their beliefs and wreak havoc. The homosexuals are on the verge of breaking the United Methodist Church apart in the U.S. and will not stop until they have their way. Sadly, they don’t realize they’re being prompted to do these things and are simply pawns in a much larger game.

    Lawyers are chomping at the bit for homosexual marriages to be ‘legal’ everywhere. They’re counting the $$$$$$$$$$$ from homosexual divorces now.

    Jack is VERY correct on the marriage license issue. Here is a link that supports that : Five Reasons Why Christians Should Not
    Obtain a State Marriage License http://www.sovereignfellowship.com/tos/21.28/

    • Is it true that divorce laws tend to favor women do you think ? Interesting web site

      • Ronnie in Iowa ~Veronica Deevers

        That is true in most cases it seems.

        And try to find a shelter for battered MEN. And there are many, many battered men. Abuse is abuse…….no matter which gender is dishing it out.

    • Mark Olejniczak

      I don’t care about the entire homosexual issue. I think that it is a distraction alright. It is a distraction to take our minds off of the plight of the middle class. It’s part of the “bread and circuses” tactic.

      If the UM Church cannot survive this issue, then perhaps it should not. I am a member of the United Methodists and will continue to be no matter how it goes.

      Jesus cared so much about this issue that he never mentioned it. I care about it just as much as Jesus did.

    • lisapaintergirl

      Can I just say- the only homosexual “agenda” is to be able to live our lives the same way you do- in peace! without being treated like “less than”.

      I know a gay couple who had a house together for over a decade, when the one died (house was only in her name) the state gave the living one’s home to the dead’s one nearest relatives- her brothers and sisters! They inherit a house that they never made a payment on while the “spouse” looses her home. Yeah- that makes sense.

      I know gay spouses that weren’t allowed into a hospital room to see their loved one because they were not “next of kin”.

      Yes the laws are unjust and unequal. We have no agenda but to live our lives with peace and respect- Do I have your permission to do that???

      I don’t think it’s natural to shave one’s legs or armpits- maybe I should force that belief on everyone.

      • Modern Survival

        This is why despite my other comments you guys do have to keep fighting the legal battle as well.

        The key though is both of those situations can be rectified via filing a single piece of paper, one a will and one a limited medical power of attorney. Not saying you should have to just saying people in your situation should consider things like this.

  14. Mark Olejniczak

    Thank you for this podcast.

    Jack’s podcasts on practical self-sufficiency subjects are very helpful and informative. His podcasts on politics are “interesting.”
    I like them so much that I have decided to get a paid subscription.

    By the way, I’m the guy that conflated objectivism and libertarianism. If someone thinks that this is a big problem, we can discuss it.

    • Robert Selzler

      Ayn Rand’s Objectivism (http://www.aynrand.org/site/PageServer?pagename=objectivism_intro) and general libertarianism (which is not as cut-and-dry as people think) have a few overlapping principles: capitalist (free-market or Austrian ) economics is probably the most apparent. One big way in which we differ is on the issueof application of the “non-aggression principle,” which is probably the largest difference between we libertarians (who are typically anti-war) and objectivists (who are, for lack of a more-descriptive term, typically pro war): http://mises.org/community/blogs/brainpolice/archive/2008/05/31/objectivism-and-war.aspx. As a libertarian, I file obejectivists in the “enemy-of-my enemy” category; we differ little enough that, if we get to actually debating the small points publicly and seriously, then we will have moved radically in the right directions.

      • Mark Olejniczak

        Thanks for the concise clarification. Given your description, objectivists are even worse that I thought.

        Since I am extremely skeptical of laissez-faire economics and against war for empire, I guess that the objectivists have nothing for me.

        • Robert Selzler

          To be fair, mises.org does have a libertarian bias, so I would seek out the other side of the coin before writing them off completely. Grain of salt, and all that! : )

      • Mark Olejniczak

        I do not think that small differences in ideologies are game changers.

        If one focuses on actually trying to implement an ideology, many attributes would be modified along the way anyway. If one is totally hung up on minute issues, the ideology would never be implemented.

        I think that it’s important to look at the broad sweep of an ideology’s principles and goals. That is why I conflated objectivism and libertarianism. They were similar enough that differences seemed like “rounding errors.”

        If objectivists are as war like as you imply, that would be a game changer for me. That is a big issue.

  15. Mark Olejniczak

    Dear Reader: please be patient with the post below. It is wonkish and long.

    Banking:
    Good news, there already is a part of the banking system that is very nearly totally unregulated. It is know as the Shadow Banking System. Its deregulated status was assured by the “Commodity Futures Modernization Act of 2000.” This was a bipartisan effort by Sen. Phil Gramm (D. TX) and Pres. Bill Clinton (D. Ark, NY).

    Shadow banking is for investment banking, not the depository banking that most of us are familiar with. But with the repeal of Glass-Steagall that distinction has lost much of its significance. I propose to show how the Shadow Banking System parallels Jack’s ideal.

    Unregulated: as stated above, the major aspects of this system are largely unregulated.

    Innovative: Many “useful” banking products were invented or adapted by them. The most famous is the Collateralized Debt Obligation (CDO). These take a large number of diverse mortgages, put them all together in one bond, then split the bond into several tranches based on perceived risk. If ordinary CDOs were too tame for you, you could buy a CDO-squared or a CDO-cubed. These would be analogous to a CD in the retail banking world.

    Transparency: CDOs are complex, but don’t worry they are completely transparent to any one that wants to look. In order to make them attractive to buyers, CDO manufacturers would submit them to the scrutiny on the ratings agencies.

    Ratings agencies are staffed by highly trained professionals. They have total access to all of the pertinent data regarding CDOs. They use sophisticated risk models to test the CDOs, and best of all, they are not run by the government.

    Ratings agencies make their money by charging a fee to rate a CDO. Some may say that this is a conflict of interest, but since they value their reputations, I am sure that would not be a problem.

    Most of the mortgage CDOs were given AAA (money good) ratings. Because, as we all know, the chances of house prices to fall all over the US at the same time are very slim.

    Deposit Insurance: (almost) just like the FDIC insurance in a depository bank, CDOs could be insured by another innovative product known as a “Credit Default Swap” (CDS). If you were worried about the chance that your CDO might default, you could buy a CDS. If the bond defaulted, you’d get your money back.

    Insurance companies such as AIG got heavily into this business. The CDS part of their business was also free from dreaded regulations such as reserve requirements. But not to worry, they also had sophisticated risk models so they know the best level of reserves. (If you put too much money into reserves, it decreases your profits.)

    More Innovation: But wait, there’s more. If you can sell a CDS to a person that owns a bond, why not sell one to someone that does not even own that bond? You could make a lot more money. So they did. These are called Naked CDSs.

    CDSs are like the insurance that you have on your house. Naked CDSs are like other people buying insurance on your house, even though they have no monetary interest in your house. They are like a bet that your house will burn down. Good idea!

    So, let’s deregulate depository banks! What could go wrong?

    • Modern Survival

      @Mark I asked you before if you even know how banks create money, you still haven’t answered that likely because you don’t know. Before you can discuss banking you need to understand how it works. As for it being unregulated, you don’t get regulation either.

      Sure the banks do as they please the regulation isn’t for the regulated it is for those who want to get in the game to keep them out.

      You are seriously making statements as fact that are either factually wrong and/or based on incorrect assumptions about the way things are.

      BTW thanks for your confusion the result was today’s show.

      You don’t get it brother the regulations apply to YOU.

      • Mark Olejniczak

        The standard way that banks create funds is by loaning money. They can do this due to the fractional reserve nature of the system.

        Typically reserves have been 10%, meaning that if they have $10 M in deposits on their books, they only need to keep $1 M in cash equivalent reserves. This means that they can lend out the other $9 M. They “lend” money out by putting the lent money into a person’s checking account.

        This thing snow balls, because if some of the lent money finds its way back into the bank, then they can lend 90% of that too.

        I do not claim to be perfect. If I were, I’d have run for pope. So if you could tell me one or two misstatements that I have made, I’ll either correct them or give support them with evidence.

        • Modern Survival

          Almost! Not exactly, your explanation implies that if I run the bank of jack and you deposit 1,000,000 and I loan out 900K on it that I actually loaned your 900K and hold only 100K in reserves. Doesn’t work that way. If so no money would be created.

          If you deposit 1,000,000 honestly I could loan out 10,000,000 on it. I hold your deposit in reserve as 10%, see how that works?

          Start pealing the onion! So much of what you believe right now is based on things you think are true that are false.

      • Mark Olejniczak

        Please read my post more carefully. I said that the whole thing snowballs.

        The original deposit can be lent at 90%. If all of that money were deposited then 90% times 90% which equals 81% could be subsequently loaned. Yielding a total of 171% (1.71 of the original deposit).

        If one did an infinite sum series, adding all instances of n+1 = n * 0.9 from n=1 to n=infinity, then you end up with 10. This assumes that all money that is possible to loan is loaned.

        This is shown at: http://www.abelard.org/sums/fractional_banking_sum_of_a_geometric_sequence.php

        I disagree that I had misstated the truth. I did not carry it to infinity, but stated that it could.

        • Modern Survival

          No see you still got it wrong, LMAO. Yes I know about the snow ball and money going back into the system, I have lectured on it in depth. I am just talking about the original deposit.

          No one seems to get this, if a bank is required to hold a 10% reserve it doesn’t mean they can only loan out 90% of their deposits, it means they can loan out 10 times their deposits.

          Do you understand that when you borrow money to buy a house the bank doesn’t give you any money? They do not cut a check from their reserves, they don’t drop their deposits a thin dime, not a penny. They CREATE new money via the loan. The money isn’t there, they draft a check an just like magic new money is created.

          So if I am a bank a very tiny one and I hold an average of 1 million in deposits you would say I can only loan 900K that the money would have to come back as a new deposit for me to loan more. This is what most people think, this is even what most literature says, it is just factually wrong though. If this were true and new money was created via the loan and the bank would have

          1,000,000 on hand
          900,000 due as accounts payable

          So they would have reserves of what? Not 10% but 111%

          Funny no?

          This is what I am talking about you want to tell me the banks are already unregulated and you don’t even know their most basic functions and how they multiply the M3 in our economy.

          Banks are regulated in tons of ways, the problem isn’t a lack of regulation but what said regulations empower them to do, what competition is squashed by them.

          More for instance you got into credit default swaps, they all do this now, how does regulation help us then? What if you or I could create a bank with out the FDIC? What if nothing got in our way, what if the only thing we had to do was publish our terms and stand by them? How many more little banks would exist? How many of them would never play with derivatives, etc.

          I get the feeling you think you are telling me something I don’t know already with things like Default Swaps, it is all old news around here. Here me in 2008 sounding the alarm about of this long before it was main stream news or even a main stream talking point. http://www.thesurvivalpodcast.com/the-quadrillion-dollar-dervitatives-time-bomb

          Here me explaining Goldman Sach’s issuing a warning about the stability of 11 States including NJ, FL, WI, CA, NV, OH, MI, IL, MA, CT and HI. Suggesting that investors in their bonds purchase credit default swaps against them to insure their investments. http://www.thesurvivalpodcast.com/episode-00109-the-state-of-the-economy-in-december-2008 also in 2008

          I know this could come off as look how smart I am, please don’t see it that way I just want you to get that I know all this stuff already frankly I know it cold and I know the marketing bullshit you are fed daily. I know the congress and senate might as well be the WWF wrestling show! I don’t know wrestling today but if you believe any of it let me flashback to my childhood. If you really think any side wants to regulate to protect you or me you actually might as well have rooted for Hulk Hogan vs The Iron Sheik in the 80s. While some actually believed wrestling to be real the Sheik and the Hulk were running around smoking dope in Hogans Corvette.

          That is your democrats in congress explaining the dangers of deregulation that the scary republicans want and how their reforms protect us when their damn reforms specifically EXEMPT all the fricken players that caused the crisis, yes every single one is exempt form the financial reforms passed by the democrat controlled congress in 09. The low down on much of that is here http://www.thesurvivalpodcast.com/episode-427-the-economic-shell-game-continues

          So do tell me man what good is government regulation of all this stuff, what has it done for us? How has it protected us?

      • Mark Olejniczak

        Did you take exception to only that one item?

        If you have more, please provide them.

      • Mark Olejniczak

        I mis-typed and you did not catch it. Phil Gramm is (R. TX) not (D. TX).

        Sorry for any confusion.

      • Mark Olejniczak

        Bank Reserves:
        You say that if a bank cuts you a check, that check does not get cleared at the Fed and that the bank’s account at the Fed is not debited? I don’t buy it. If the bank’s account is debited, then its reserves go down. Please give me some third party reference to substantiate this assertion.

        Regulations:
        You seem to agree that derivatives are bad. You also seem to say that the problem with the Dems is that they did not regulate enough. What we need is pols with balls to regulate them!

        What good are regulations?
        From 1930 until the 1980′s the US experienced no financial crises. We had recessions and periods of moderate inflation, but no systemic banking crises or liquidity traps. Then came Carter, Reagan, deregulation, tax cuts for the rich and we have had a series of boom-bubble-bust financial crises ever since. Sensible regulations were part of the reason for this prosperous period.

        In the past, we had a prosperous but boring economy. Now we have an economy that is wildly prosperous for those at the top, in a downward spiral for the rest, and is very exciting. I’ll take boring.

        • Modern Survival

          @Mark see let’s get you past point one first oh young libertarian padawan of little faith. I present to you this,

          “If business is active, the banks with excess reserves probably will have opportunities to loan the $9,000. Of course, they do not really pay out loans from the money they receive as deposits. If they did this, no additional money would be created.

          What they do when they make loans is to accept promissory notes in exchange for credits to the borrowers’ transaction accounts. Loans (assets) and deposits (liabilities) both rise by $9,000. Reserves are unchanged by the loan transactions. But the deposit credits constitute new additions to the total deposits of the banking system. ”

          And does this come from some crazy tin hatter libertarian book or website. Not it comes from a publication called “Modern Money Mechanics” published by the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago

          Point one done!

          Oh hell I’ll play along point two regulations.

          Don’t tell me what was done prior to failed regs tell me why I should care about regulations at all if we have a system with more abuse then ever in it. Politicians with the balls to back it up, WE HAD ONE, Ron Paul, mocked at every turn, lied about, misrepresented by the media at every opportunity, why, the system dude.

          As long as we have a Federal Reserve and the ability to create money those who create the money at the highest levels will move your beloved politicians around like mere chess pieces.

          The politicians can’t fix it in this system. Never will, banking regulations are written by the bankers, pharmaceutical regulations by the drug companies, agriculture regulations written by the biotech firms destroying everything. How can you have ANY faith in a system that gave you this result. Did you hear this episode of TSP,

          http://www.thesurvivalpodcast.com/barron-from-definingthemachine

          Listen to that and learn the 100% truth about how congress runs. How a freshman congressman shows up 100K or more in debt to his own party how his/her first job is to go do a telemarketing gig that most people are paid about 10 dollars an hour to do. Learn the facts man, once you do you will have to have severe brain damage to ever think just changing out those we have elected will fix anything.

          You said this, “In the past, we had a prosperous but boring economy. Now we have an economy that is wildly prosperous for those at the top, in a downward spiral for the rest, and is very exciting. I’ll take boring.”

          Wow now you do sound like a republican! Nostalgia for the America that never existed. LMAO! Funny that your dividing point is 1930s, of course the new fed then got to leave the gold standard and really crank shit up, but tell me how it could work if only politicians had bigger balls right?

          For your little fantasy you should use the date 1913, as that year we got two “gifts” one the Federal Reserve and two the income tax, did you know that? You know why we got the income tax and the Fed in a nice little gift package from the half of congress that showed up just before Christmas, well the bankers wrote the Reserve Act and the Income Tax exists solely to serve the debt and growing it, in other words our income tax pays for the Fed! So you could start there.

          However again you are buying into nostalgic BS if you do. Boom and bust cycles executed by the bankers go back to the foundation of the union. 1929 wasn’t the first end of a wild ride you know.

          Here are dates of US recessions and depressions prior to 1930

          1789
          1796
          1802
          1807
          1812
          1815
          1822
          1825
          1828
          1833
          1839
          1845
          1847
          1853
          1873
          1885
          1893
          1899
          1902
          1907
          1910
          1913
          1918
          1920
          1923
          1926

          Those are start dates some lasted only a year some longer, you can verify them all and I got tired and left a few out!

          So do tell me how your statement of “In the past, we had a prosperous but boring economy. Now we have an economy that is wildly prosperous for those at the top, in a downward spiral for the rest, and is very exciting. I’ll take boring.” is based on anything but nostalgia and hearsay.

          Fun stuff no?

  16. This is more of a side bar item than direct comment on the show.

    Do you distinguish at all between “socialism” and “social democracy”.

    I’m not saying you should like either or have anything positive to say about either. I find it strange that so many people discuss political philosophies and then never distinguish between the two. Great Britain and Cuba both have significant government run “social safety nets”, but I think the issue of whether or not the state owns the means of production in a political system is less than trivial.

    • Modern Survival

      No I don’t. Socialism is socialism, the best way to run socialism is via democracy. That is why this nation isn’t a democracy it is a republic.

    • I’m just getting into semantics here. I like your work and appreciate what you do.

      But just to bust your chops a bit, you don’t seem to have a technical understanding of the term socialism, but use it in the common, untechnical way that people use to refer to social welfare systems and/or taxation that they don’t approve of. It is mostly just a negative label for “stuff I don’t like”. For example, technically, if a corporation has all of the employees owning at least some shares of stock in the company, this is a form of socialism. Everyone involved in production owns part of the structure for production and benefit (or lose) together (albeit, in varying degrees). I think what you disapprove of is the forms of socialism in which people get to take back more than what they contribute; but this is only one form of socialism.

      I’ll shut up now and not pester you about such matters any more :). I find it easier to understand the points people are making if I better understand how they use vocabulary.

      • Modern Survival

        @JB sorry man, I get it perfectly.

        As a libertarian I have said over and over, if you want socialism knock yourself out as long as I am not compelled to participate, you are also wrong when you said this,

        “For example, technically, if a corporation has all of the employees owning at least some shares of stock in the company, this is a form of socialism. Everyone involved in production owns part of the structure for production and benefit (or lose) together (albeit, in varying degrees).”

        No man that isn’t even voluntary socialism it is capitalism at it’s finest. In that arrangement the company stock has a par value. If public it is set by the market in a private company a formula such as a “Comparable Company Analysis” or say the “Blackman Method”. Employees are then not given this stock they are paid with it, no differently then if paid with money and if they then purchased the stock themselves. The only real advantage is when the company is private and the employee could not buy the stock without the program, but either way this is called compensation.

        Socialism is when money or materials are taken from producers (generally without consent) and given over to non producers.

        Now you could have voluntary socialism but it almost always falls apart, not many communes last man.

  17. Nobody’s said anything about income taxes.. so here’s my two cents.. ;-)

    When you are figuring out your ‘gain’ for tax purposes it’s:
    How Much You Got – How Much You Paid = How Much Is Taxed

    But for income taxes its:
    How Much You Got = How Much Is Taxed

    Which means.. the value of your time, literally your LIFE, is calculated as ZERO. Or:

    How Much You Got – (Days Of Your Life x 0) = How Much Is Taxed

    If there’s ever been a better statement of who thinks they OWN YOU, I can’t think of what it is.

  18. I’m heterosexual but I’d just like to say that homosexuality is a form of love and should be respected. And I mean love in the spiritual sense of the word. Don’t you guys get smart. As long as you don’t impose yourself, be free to be gay.

  19. Just finished listening to the episode earlier this evening and was simultaneously linked this article[1], which talks about the rise of disability in the US and it paralleled your discussion on the safety net, so I thought I’d pass it on.

    [1] – http://apps.npr.org/unfit-for-work/

  20. Mark Olejniczak

    Where are the economic libertarians?
    It seems that most people here want to talk about the homo hordes that are overrunning this country. Or is that you think that the Lord will smite us because of our wickedness? Don’t worry. We’re not being overrun, and Abraham convinced the Lord to spare Sodom if he could find 10 righteous people there. I’m sure that are 10 righteous people even in San Francisco.

    The state-ist is coming!
    I will be submitting posts that will challenge some the economic aspects of libertarianism. Jack is a busy guy. He has to educate us on the tools and techniques to enhance our self-sufficiency. Muster the libertarian legions to fight this state-ist. Don’t leave Jack alone!

    • Modern Survival

      Actually you are the worst type of statist, a statist that doesn’t know he is one.

      No man is more enslaved then he who falsely believes he is free!

      No one is joining in much because you are getting completely owned at every turn and people know I am having fun with it. I see great potential in you, you are asking all the right questions, you just have to start getting better answers and start digging deeper and to do this you must get outside of the false dichotomy, I believe you will if I didn’t I wouldn’t waste time with this.

      • Mark Olejniczak

        I am freely admitting that I am currently a state-ist, so you need not worry about any self delusion on my part.

        I used the term “currently” above because I have not come to, what has been termed, “epistemic closure” on this. In other words, I am searching for Truth (Capital T). That is why I am here.

        I have biases. I am aware of and constantly fighting confirmation bias. I try to keep an open mind.

        I could be convinced that libertarianism is the best but you’d have dispel my suspicions. One such suspicion is that giving more tax cuts to billionaires will help the middle class.

        I do not know if you would deny the above statement, but when you called for a flat tax in your podcast, that is what would happen.

        So, I am redeemable and convertible.

        • Modern Survival

          See I knew you had potential!

        • Modern Survival

          Oh and actually a flat 10% tax would likely result in billionaires paying more not less. Do you think billionaires have a W2 with 100 million in income for the year ended 2012 they take to H&R block?

          Seriously have you ever run a business? I have and my businesses always paid far LESS taxes then I did and I paid for a shit load of what I wanted inside the business.

          Now take that up to the level of GM and Apple and all the bullshit breaks they get. Do you know what GM, GE and Apple paid in actual taxes last year, it is fricken laughable!

          Warren Buffets comments about his secretary paying a higher tax rate them he does is nothing but bullshit. He has all his wealth inside Bershire Hathaway, he pays himself only 350K a year and pays the majority of his expenses inside the company. His poor secretary pays a higher rate then he does BECAUSE she technically makes more then he does, don’t you get all this bullshit yet? In the words of George Carlin, “it’s all bullshit and it’s bad for you”.

          So a flat 10% on all profit with no loopholes and a flat 10% on all earned income would be fair, it wouldn’t’ be “tax cut” for billionaires it would be an increase for them. It would be a cut for the upper middle class and the so called “wealthy” but understand wealthy is anyone with a net worth of over 1 million, many such people make 100K a year or so, they are not billionaires.

          Oh and you bet your ass it would be a tax increase for the 40% that don’t pay shit at all! As it should be. Why shouldn’t a person making 25K a year pay 10% vs. NOTHING if I make 150K and have to pay 10% too or if you make 500K, why should you pay 40% and I only pay 30% and the guy making 50K effectively pays about 5% how the hell is that fair.

          Again did you know that the graduated income tax was one of the 12 planks of the communist manifesto?

  21. Mark Olejniczak

    Walmart vs. Main Street
    I live in rural Michigan. In the small towns near me Main Street businesses are in terrible shape. There are many empty and those that still exist always seem to be empty.

    We have a Walmart in the area. I see a lot of people there shopping for all manner of goods. It is obvious that Main Street’s woes are largely due to the Walmart.

    Is this a symptom of what Jack has termed Neo-fascism? Where the big overwhelm and decimate the small. I think that it is.

    My question to you all is which is MORE responsible for this state of affairs, the free market or government? What remedy does libertarianism have to offer?

    If you look at Walmart’s tactics it would be informative. At least at first, they looked for small towns with a retail base. Moved in, built stores with a much larger selection and lower prices. Main Street could not compete and was forced out of business.

    Walmart went to China to arrange a supply chain produced goods with cheap labor. They forced their suppliers to cut their price every year or risk loosing Walmart’s business.

    This sounds like the free market to me. There were willing sellers and willing buyers.

    Since Libertarians believe all ills come from government they must put the blame on government. So, what is the government’s role in this? It stopped enforcing the anti-trust regulations and opened up trade with China. These two policies are in accord with libertarian philosophy, namely less regulation and free trade. So is this government overreach or government capture? I say that it’s government capture.

    I suppose that there are some reasons that government regulations, etc. were harder for Main Street to follow than Walmart. But remember, I asked which was MORE responsible, the free market or government.

    • ok. I need to call a time out on this one..

      SOME libertarians may believe all ills come from government.

      While its nice to find someone to blame.. its dumb. Really? In 100 years ‘human evolution’ has only moved us from ‘the devil made me do it’ to ‘the free market made me do it’?

      The US, the US government, and ‘Main Street’ are a direct reflection of the consciousness of the American people. WE are responsible.

      Blaming it on ‘the government’, corporations, big business, the free market, the FED, the devil, blah blah blah is a cop out.

      Stop passively participating and take back response-ability.

      • Robert Selzler

        Great point, Insidious, and one that isn’t often explicitly stated. The logic for this reasoning really follows as such:

        We are the government. The government is responsible. Therefore, we are responsible. Basic logical syllogism.

        • Mark Olejniczak

          Absolutely correct. That is why I cannot understand the hatred some express for the government.

          To the extent that we demand it, we have government by, of, and for the people. Where that is not true, it’s our own fault.

      • Modern Survival

        Beautifully said Insidious.

      • Mark Olejniczak

        Thank you all for replying.

        I take personal responsibility for the direction that I would like to see our country go. I do not shop at the Walmart.

        I buy local as much as possible. I shop at farmers’ markets, look for Michigan produce in “normal” grocery stores (I live in Mich), shop from mom-and-pop stores as much as possible, drink Michigan beer, etc.

        It costs a little more to live like that. Some people are right on the edge and need to cut every possible penny. They do not enjoy the luxury of some extra cash.

        Walmart does provide a useful function. Walmart, the organization that adds to rural poverty, does offer low prices. It has been called the high cost of low prices.

        I agree that we are a substantially free people and thus bear ultimate responsibility. But if we want to change a situation, then we need to know its cause. Since reality is so complicated we need to act on incomplete information. That is why I used the word “MORE” in the what’s responsible question.

        So, ignore the nuance for a second and try to answer the question. Which factor is more responsible?

        • Robert Selzler

          Fair enough: the government.

          In my estimation, a free market doesn’t exist (though it theoretically could), so it can be just as responsible as the Easter Bunny. If you mean the “free market” the way that Republicans talk about it, then they (government and the market) are the same thing. Crony capitalism is the government wearing the mask of a free market, which is what Republicans are all about; at least Democrats have the ideological grit to admit that they want the government in charge of everything.

        • Modern Survival

          @Robert of course a free market exists. People buy my membership, no subsidies enable that do they. Some use silver, some barter hell I took coffee a few times. You want free market go to a swap meet or flea market you will see it all the time. Call up a drug dealer they make a living in a black but very free market.

          The free market exists and tells us the truth about the regulated markets. Price the Dow Average in ounces of gold and you will see the free market truth about the false prosperity we are watching as the green shoots put down roots.

          Every time a neighbor hands a dozen eggs to a neighbor who hands back a bucket of peppers the free market is working.

          The free market is the foundation of commerce and exited long before any formal governments showed up and screwed everything up.

          The only thing in the way of the free market is government.

        • You’re framing the question. Your stating as a conclusion ‘the problem is the free market and government’.

          You’ve shown no proof. Its an assertion.

          You don’t need to understand the ‘source’ of the problem to solve it.. you need only understand the nature of the problem.

          Example:
          I have no money. I want $100.

          What is the source of you having no money? Free markets? Governmental interference? Which is a LARGER part of the problem?

          Its a waste of time, and a way to procrastinate taking action while still feeling like your ‘accomplishing something’ (I’m getting to the ROOT of this problem! Hooray for me.)

          The problem is you’re broke. So what are 10 ways you can make/get $100? (solvable)

          What is the source of X? Mental masturbation.. forever, no definitive place to stop ‘digging’ (you’ll just knock off at some arbitrary point and say ‘this is the source!’).

        • Robert Selzler

          @Modern Survival

          I was speaking from a macroeconomic perspective in relation to the “free market” as the media spins it in relation to WalMart. I agree that individuals make voluntary transactions, but those transactions are predicated upon the whole of the economy being sullied by government intervention. I can trade you my corn for your subscription, but, if I have an ag exemption or corn subsidy say, then the government has worked its tendrils into our micro-transaction and it isn’t intellectually honest to call it truly-free anymore.

          In my mind, I look at it like gardening; you can’t spray RoundUp on ninety-nine percent of your property and then claim that the one percent is truly organic. A little leaven leavens the whole lump, to turn a phrase.

          Again, I am not an economist, so I defer to your experience. I’m just laying it out how it works in my mind.

        • Modern Survival

          Ah I see and in that context you are correct perhaps what is more accurate to say would be…

          What the media calls the free market isn’t a free market.

    • The Libertarian response:
      If you don’t want to support large corporations (Walmart).. don’t buy shit from large corporations.

      No regulation needed.

      Libertarians object to ANYONE receiving ‘special rights’ from the government.. from the lone individual to the mega corp.

      An example of ‘special rights’ would be GE’s tax breaks, the big five banks exemptions from financial regulations, Chevron’s ‘oil exploration’ tax bonuses, McDonald’s exemption from food quality standards.. etc. etc.

      In a libertarian state, none of those would exist.

      • Mark Olejniczak

        I think that the prohibition on “special rights” is part of the problem. I under stand it from an ideological purity point of view, but I think that it does great harm to the American worker.

        When I hear what you said, I hear that you want the American worker to compete directly with the Chinese, Vietnamese, or Burmese worker. That is a death sentence.

        For better or worse, Americans have come to rely on warm houses, clean drinking water, less than 20 people in a house, and luxuries such as owning a car. You can say that they will just have to get over it, and perhaps they will. But it won’t be a pretty process.

        So, do I want special rights? Yes. I want special rights for American workers. Call me crazy if you wish, but that’s just me.

        As for special rights for corporations, if they are multi national corps that don’t put American workers first, I say cut them off cold.

        • ok. you’re crazy. :-)

          Every human being wants ‘something for nothing’ (‘special’ rights).. its part of our survival instinct that drives us to look for windfalls (trees full of fruit).

          However, there are two types of windfalls.. ‘natural’ windfalls (that tree full of fruit) and ‘created’ windfalls.. (Cyprus taking 10% of bank depositors money).

          Natural windfalls are fine.. no libertarian problems. Created windfalls are not.. they rely upon SOMEONE ELSE bearing the cost.

          You are neck deep in propaganda.. so I don’t know where to begin. Maybe start with

          ‘American’s can’t compete with ..and doing so will end in them writing in the mud in abject misery’

          Can’t compete for what? A job making cheap crap for Walmart?

          Who is this mythical ‘american worker’ and what is he competing for? Who told him he needs to compete? This is slave talk.

          In a free society *cough* your master doesn’t supply you with warm shelter and clean water, you do it for yourself. WE do it for ourselves. There is no ‘they’ (our government parents) to appeal to when..

          ‘Mom.. China is poking me, make him stop!’
          ‘Mom.. Vietnam isn’t playing fair!’
          ‘Mom.. it’s not fair that Germany gets a month of paid vacation and I don’t!’

          Its time to be the grownup and stop expecting ‘mom’ to fix it for us and start dealing with the world as it is.

          If you want ‘fair’ working conditions, promote fair working conditions. Globally.

          Its ‘special privilege’ (again) that creates the vast wealth disparity that makes worker exploitation possible.

    • Robert Selzler

      Wal-Mart, like many other companies in the US, are heavily subsidized: http://www.walmartsubsidywatch.org/.

      Without those subsidies, many of which come from city government in the way of land or “tax breaks,” Wal-Mart couldn’t be the terror to small business that it is. Essentially, when you shop at Wal-Mart, you are receiving cheaper goods and services because of corporate welfare. It sucks, so I try not to. I am sure the same could be said for many big-box stores.

      Asking who is more responsible isn’t easy. I would say that, when the government intervenes, the idea of a “free” market goes out the window. Oil and water, that. By the way, crony capitalism and warmongering are probably the two initial reasons I switched from the Republican party; fighting wars to preserve peace and propping up corporations to preserve a free market seem an awful lot like promiscuity to preserve virginity, to me.

      To be fair to your question: the government. In our Keynesian-driven system, I would say that government makes it difficult for smaller businesses to compete and, therefore, protects larger corporate interests through cronyism and subsidy. The folks at Cato-Unbound say something similar:

      “Vast corporate empires like Wal-Mart are often either hailed or condemned (depending on the speaker’s perspective) as products of the free market. But not only is Wal-Mart a direct beneficiary of (usually local) government intervention in the form of such measures as eminent domain and tax breaks, but it also reaps less obvious benefits from policies of wider application. The funding of public highways through tax revenues, for example, constitutes a de facto transportation subsidy, allowing Wal-Mart and similar chains to socialize the costs of shipping and so enabling them to compete more successfully against local businesses; the low prices we enjoy at Wal-Mart in our capacity as consumers are thus made possible in part by our having already indirectly subsidized Wal-Mart’s operating costs in our capacity as taxpayers.” (No block quote :/ )

      Here’s the full article: http://www.cato-unbound.org/2008/11/10/roderick-long/corporations-versus-the-market-or-whip-conflation-now/

      • Modern Survival

        Great comment Robert and it shows the whole point.

        Do I trust government? NO!

        Do I trust businesses? Hell NO!

        Do I trust that if competition is real that market itself can be trusted because when unencumbered WE ARE THE MARKET? You bet I do!

        For a libertarian it isn’t do I trust business or government more it is I KNOW I can’t trust either one when either is granted power and when the two work together I really can’t trust them!

      • Mark Olejniczak

        Corporations, like people, seek advantage. This is neither new nor news.

        I went to the Walmart Subsidy Watch website. It was very interesting. There are plenty of Walmarts in Mich. The website mentioned only three.

        The one where I live, Charlotte, did not make the list. Yet, its Walmart thrives and the downtown suffers.

        Subsidies for Walmart are an abomination, but they are not the difference between success and failure. The much larger factor is market fundamentals. They offer a large selection of good quality merchandise at low prices.

        Mom-and-pop cannot compete on the fundamentals.

        • Robert Selzler

          No WalMart is an island unto itself. A subsidy for one WalMart is a subsidy for all. That is one of the reasons that they can offer such unreasonably low prices: they spread costs. Not that that is bad, necessarily, but it does allow them to leverage that trollopian size to strangle smaller business. Not that I think this is a clear example of libertarian principle, but it is still informative: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jazb24Q2s94

      • Mark Olejniczak

        Reply to one of your later comments:

        Point well taken. They are a mega-corp and the largest employer in the US.

        That is what makes mega-corps so dangerous to economic liberty. They can use their economic clout to crush competition, and the competition is usually the little guy.

        I think that the rise of Walmarts is one of the unintended consequences of libertarian-type thinking. I say libertarian-type because libertarians would vehemently deny it.

        If you think that the market is all that matters and the market fights with dollars, then Walmart wins. (This concept is off the top of my head and I reserve the right to revise and extend it at a future date.)

        • Modern Survival

          And would say that Walmart is held back in anyway by government? Or are the very regulations you say we need the method by which they exert so much power?

          How hard were smaller competitors hit for instance when the Assclown made sure Obamacare didn’t apply to WalMart?

          Are they dangerous because they are big or because they have power due to collusion with government?

          Do you really think Walmart is opposed to more regulations or do you think they love the idea of huge hurtles for any new competitor to get over when they can just absorb these so called regs into their system so easily or if they simply are exempted from them?

          This is what you don’t seem to get the problems here all come from government regulations which empower the very companies you say you want to regulate.

    • @Robert (no reply button)
      Special subsidies ARE a problem (received by only some market participants)..

      However, unless transportation infrastructure is created for the EXCLUSIVE use or benefit of a company.. its a stretch to consider it ‘special privilege’.

      (There are cases.. mostly involving resource extraction, but I don’t think anyone has built new roads for Walmart trucks)

      ‘Special privilege’ does not exist in a ‘free market’.

      • Robert Selzler

        I think what the Cato article was implying was that many of these infrastructure “improvements” or regulations are applied ex post facto and magically benefit the folks with lobbyists. They are then better able to leverage the infrastructure to which we all have access. Admittedly, this is the weaker argument, and I much favor the argument against blatant land grant and tax incentives.

      • Robert Selzler

        Also: seriously, what is up with the reply buttons?

      • Modern Survival

        @Robert it is a bug, I can’t fix it!

    • Robert Selzler

      Another point to consider: “big business” is more apt to take bigger risks due to the corporate welfare system we have in the US. Who is likely to take huge, risky business decisions: the small, family owned hardware store or WalMart? I think that there is an implication that, if WalMart (any huge corp) were to slip up, then we would bail them out. Who’s going to bail out the local small business? I am by no means an economist nor am I a businessman, but the logic seems solid to me. I am open to correction from my business or economically-minded friends here, though. : )

      • The biggest problem with business ‘bail outs’?

        They keep incompetent/destructive managers/owners in business.

        In a free market, a business failing is not a ‘tragedy’ to be avoided at all costs.. its a removal of resources from incompetent managers.

        By returning those resources to the ‘pool’ they may then be utilized by someone who can do more good with them (At business failure, assets are not thrown away, they’re sold to other businesses. A good example of this is the Iridium satellite phone network.)

        The people looking for a bailout are INCOMPETENT owners. (The managers they hired are their own fault)

        man.. i’m cranky today. ;-)

      • Your obliquely pointing out one of the biggest problems with ‘democracy’..

        When a big company/industry (auto bailouts) wants a bail out.. the line is ‘if you don’t.. all these people will be out of work.. and THEY VOTE’ (threat)

        This pretty much means that a democracy, will always be driven by the ‘takers’. People who want something for nothing, a free ride, or some special consideration. They’re the ones ‘actively involved’ in the political process, lobbying, bribing, threatening..

        The average non-taker is too busy getting on with his life.

  22. Mark Olejniczak

    Where “small town” mom-and-pops thrive

    This is off topic, but it came to me while thinking about the whole small-operation-success idea. Where in the US do you think that I have found the best example of “small town” enterprises that are thriving? Where the big box retailers have made little inroads.

    New York City. My daughter is working on Manhattan and living in Brooklyn. (Thankfully only a three-year gig.) We have visited her several times.

    I am astounded walking the streets of Brooklyn. Every block has one or two mom-and-pop grocery stores. There are lots and lots of non-chain restaurants. Every couple of blocks there is an independent hardware store. There are independent and single purpose shoe, clothes, and bookstores. The “department stores” are also independent. Plenty of independent coffee shops, etc. She even has an excellent independent plant nursery five blocks from her house. And most people actually walk there! You get my drift.

    Sure NYC is a huge city where you cannot buy a 32oz soda, but it seems to be built up of a multitude of neighborhoods. NYC is of course very busy, but walking down the street, you’d swear you were in old-time small-town America. (Except the mom-and-pop may be Pakistanis.)

    I am not sure why it is that way. Perhaps it’s because it was built up years ago before the neo-fascists took over.

    • Robert Selzler

      Moscow, Idaho, my undergraduate alma mater, effectively booted WalMart out when they denied them tax breaks to open a supercenter instead of a… regular center? Anyway, that town might be a good case study: they have a thriving local culture with many non-chain businesses. I’m not saying that they are an ideal of Austrian economy, since their local economy is fueled by financial aid, but they might be a good place to look if you want success stories for WalMart-free communities.

      Contrast this with my hometown and current residence, Lewiston Idaho, a mere 30 minutes to the south: we have a super-duper WalMart and businesses are closing left and right. . Moscow also has a thriving farmer’s market while Lewiston’s is little more that a craft fair. This might be a bit of chicken-and-egg paradox: does a town’s local culture suffer because of WalMart or are towns with poor local culture fertile ground for WalMart. Just my observations, more than anything

  23. Longest discussion ever!

    Alternative ‘safety nets’ that are very Libertarian (as they are voluntary):

    ‘Mutual Aid Societies’ (Benefit Society)
    Wikipedia’s entry is worth the read, particularly regarding how well people were taking care of each other BEFORE the government ‘stepped in’.

  24. Ronnie in Iowa ~Veronica Deevers

    I sure wish homosexuals spent as much time on fighting Monsanto as they do wanting a government marriage license.

    • lisapaintergirl

      I sure wish heterosexuals spent as much time fighting Monsanto as they do trying to prevent people from getting married. ;)

  25. Mark Olejniczak

    Flat Tax is a Trojan Horse

    This is one of my pet peeves with the right wing. It adds insult to injury.

    The Insult: The claim is that it simplifies taxes, but a flat income tax rate does no such thing. 99.99% of the complexity in the tax code is used to differentiate types of income and to determine deductions. All of the tax rate information for incomes over $100K on one page for form 1040.

    The Injury: Some people at all income levels would get a tax cut. Some people at all income levels would get a tax increase. But the numbers are skewed. Very few people at the lower levels would get a tax cut while almost all of those at the upper level would.

    Since the Flat Tax disproportionately benefits the ultra rich, it would exacerbate the Neo-fascist problem.

    My Simple Plan: Keep the current rates, eliminate all deductions, treat all income the same, and provide a generous standard deduction to offset reasonable costs of living. Since corporations are people, make them pay like people.

    Link to the non-partisan Tax Policy Institute’s analysis of the Herman Cain flat tax he called 9-9-9.

    • Modern Survival

      See you are fighting the “right wing” who trust me doesn’t want a true flat tax. Remember I want NO INCOME TAX, a flat tax is just a step toward that as you downsize the bloated corpse that is the US Government.

      Your simple plan would destroy what is left of the economy.

      Has a poor person ever offered you a job? You are literally swimming in propaganda.

      Please tell me why I should pay a greater percentage simply because I worked harder and made more then you? If we both paid 10% would that not be more fair.

      I make 200K and pay 20K you make 50K and pay 5K is that not equal, is that not fair? If you say not, inhale deeply and see if your head is in your ass. LOL

      • Mark Olejniczak

        Poor People as Job Creators
        Well, in a way yes. As a teenager I made and delivered pizzas at a restaurant. I was of course hired by its owner; but in the course of my work I made pizzas that poor people ate and I delivered pizzas to poor people. The owner did not hire me out of concern for teenagers. He would not have hired me were it not for the poor people that consumed his pizzas.

        The Harder Work equals More Pay Hypothesis
        This is a standard line in the defense of low tax rates for the rich, and as a subset of reality it is true. In the real world this phenomenon correlates extremely poorly. Lets give an example:

        Let’s say that Jack is an entrepreneur who earns about $200K per year. Mitt is a former financier who earns $22 Million per year. Therefore Mitt must work 110 times as hard as Jack. Jack must be very lazy, if it’s possible to work 110 times as hard as he does.

        But reality is starkly different. I’ll bet you dollars to donuts that Jack is working his butt off. And as it turns out, Mitt’s “un-earned” income is from a blind trust, where by definition he did absolutely NO work. Don’t get me started on Paris Hilton.

        CEO Pay averages 340 times that of the average worker. (Average, not the lowest.) Therefore the CEO must be a combination of 340 times as smart and hard working as his average worker. This makes sense? Really?

        My personal experience:

        I worked my way through college working in slaughterhouses. I ended my career as in the computer-programming field. My wages in the slaughterhouse was an order of magnitude less than with computers. I can personally guarantee that slaughterhouse work is much harder than computer work.

        • I think now you’re arguing against an imaginary republican in your head. :-)

          I say this for two reasons:
          1) No one said anything about giving ‘the rich’ or the ‘well paid’ special treatment (quite the opposite)
          2) No one said anything about ‘the rich’ or the ‘well paid’ working ‘harder’

          and as a side note.. you delivered pizzas to people. some of them may have been ‘poor’.. some of them may have been ‘cheap’. people desiring things, and other people meeting those desires = jobs (its called a free market)

        • Mark Olejniczak

          This thread is about the flat tax. The one that I found that actually was scored in any way was the Herman Cain 9-9-9 plan. (See the link in the original post.)

          In the aggregate that plan gave a huge tax cut for the over $1Million crowd and an increase for lower incomes.

          Herman Cain may be a failure, but he’s not imaginary. He was tops in the polls among Republicans for a couple of weeks.

          Feel free to post another tax plan that has been scored.

          Poor People the truth is that job creation is an interplay between both supply and demand. To focus totally on one is an error.

        • @Mark
          Oh. Sorry, I thought this was a discussion of how a Libertarian Society would work, not a discussion of some Republican ‘tax plan’.

          Yes. Under any flat tax plan.. people that are now paying less than the flat tax rate would pay more, and people that are now paying more than the flat tax, would pay less.

          Ahh my old friend math.

          Yes. supply + demand = market. Your statement was that ‘poor people create jobs’ it seemed.. incomplete.

          ;-)

        • Modern Survival

          On and on but you ignore this reality.

          Mitt in your example earning 22 million isn’t going to end up paying 2.2 million in the current system, he will pay less. I know you don’t understand this because even though you are well paid by your standards you are an employee and you have never run a business. In the current system Mitt will pay LESS then 2.2 million in a 10% flat system he will pay the 2.2 and if you don’t like that I ask how much is enough.

          Don’t tell me how hard he worked I don’t really care, it is his money he earned it. We often bitch about wealthy people and say they don’t work as hard, that is the point isn’t it?

          I look at it this way I make 200K and I pay 20K, you make 75K and you pay 7500 dollars, Mitt makes 22 million and pays in 2.2 million, the pizza kid makes 20 grand and pays in 2k, what exactly is the problem here?

          How much do you want from Mitt? Why is he the bad guy? Because he simply has more?

          CEOs make 340 times an average salary, so what, who gives a fuck honestly? How do you become a CEO, have you ever been one, do you think you could cut it? Most CEOs are not given the job they create the company. I have been a CEO and I have been a COO, neither time did I make 340 times the wage of my average employee. But had I wanted that life and stayed with it and grew a 12 million dollar a year company into say a 200 million dollar a year company and wanted to pay myself 10 million or more a year, why shouldn’t I?

          You know some people bitch about TSP today, say it has gotten to big and I am too successful, yep some say that. My only response is in the early days at 3AM when I was up that early to get it all done before I went to run another company I never bumped into the asses of these people on my way into my home office.

          And stop being a dumb ass on some levels, I present a 100% flat tax, all income as income of 10% for all and you dig up some bullshit from a non starter candidate with 999, really. Like insidious said you are talking to libertarians here, don’t bring up republican bullshit, we are not presenting it.

    • Modern Survival

      Let me add, in that scenario didn’t I pay 4 times as much as you did?

      Oh and how do you give a tax cut to someone not paying shit now? Why the hell should a person with an effective tax rate of 2% get a cut just because I no longer have to pay 38%?

      Let me ask you do you plan to be broke for your entire life? Lets say you bust your ass and make 200K on you own running a business.

      By the time you pay SSI at 2x the rate of a non self employed person, pay the income tax and all the other shit they want you will end up forking over 80K, how do you feel about that, what is fair about that? Considering that a 50K earner will pay about 6% in SSI vs. the 12 I would pay and about well zero in income taxes.

      • Mark Olejniczak

        Man, I ain’t broke. As stated above I had a good job in computers. My wife also worked part of her life. We have been totally debt free for the better part of 25 years.

        Towards the end we were saving about 65% of our gross income. And that was while we were putting two kids through the University of Michigan (not a cheap school) and paying all of those taxes.

        We were pulling down decent but not huge wages; and we were frugal. So now I would say that we are financially independent. This is true freedom. Not some imagined freedom to be out there in an economic jungle where there is death, financial destruction around every turn, and fighting with some Chinese worker for our rice bowl.

        <b<My wife and I are living in the Garden of Eden. The only difference is that we know it.

    • @Mark -
      I’m glad you recognize that you’re a statist! :-)

      Taxation is the ultimate stick of the ‘democratic’ state. What a politician promises to give me, if only I’ll elect him, is much more nebulous, and from experience, much less likely, than the reality of what the IRS will show up to take.

      And its not a question of IF I’ll take a beating, its only a question of how badly I’ll be beaten. Bruised (25%), broken (50%), or praying for death (75%)?

      Now here’s the big problem with graduated taxes.. they basically say ‘Poor peoples lives are more valuable than rich peoples lives’.

      How? Simply this.. I have two workers, one makes $10k the other $100k (to keep it simple). The one making $10k, with deductions, child care etc. (standard deduction).. pays 1% tax. The worker making $100k pays 30% tax.

      Now, they both work 260 days a year.. so each year the state demands:

      - 2.6 days of the life of the ‘poor’ worker
      - 78 days of the life of the ‘rich’ worker

      Now.. how is that ‘fair’?

    • Ahh. Always forget something..

      So, the best way to eliminate ‘special privilege’ is to remove from the politician the ability to grant privileges.. and the easiest way to do that, is to have completely flat taxation. Meaning every tax paying entity pays the same amount, regardless of the source (income and capital gains at the same rate).

      No complexity = no loopholes, and no way to ‘game’ the system

  26. Mark Olejniczak

    Know Thyself

    Self-reflection is all too rare in society. When discussing ideas logically one should work from some sort of framework. This framework should consist of principles and goals. One can then formulate “means” or tactics to achieve those ends.

    Principles are principles and cannot be compromised.

    Goals The Preamble to the US Constitution states: “… in Order to form a more perfect Union,… What is the nature of this more perfect Union in your eyes? That could be your goal.

    Principles vs. Goals Goals can be compromised if they turn out to be impractical, or even abandoned if they are shown to be in conflict with your principles.

    Means are the path that someone suggests to reach their goal. They are restrained by principles and their effectiveness is measured by how well they realize your goals.

    My principles: are pretty well denoted by personal freedoms. The US Constitution is a good codification of them.

    My goal is to promote a large, prosperous, and sustainable middle class. Access to the middle class would be near universal for people that work hard and don’t make too many stupid mistakes.

    My means: once circumscribed by my principles they are quite flexible. I am an avowed state-ist, so I am do not reject policies that give “special treatment” to promote the middle class.

    The ends (goals) do NOT justify the means. So no locking up all of the billionaires and taking all of their money, etc.

    I do not know if inquires such as these resonate with libertarians, but they should. How can you know what you know if you don’t think about what you assume that you know. Sentiment is not enough.

    I am interested in what principles and goals libertarians have.

    • Modern Survival

      In spite of all your rambling I have noticed you just ignored the thread where I totally owned you on the banking system and how it works and the other points made there. You know where I backed up my claims with a Federal Reserve publication, why don’t you at least learn the system before you start talking about changing it, did you listen to the podcast about defining the machine?

      • Mark Olejniczak

        Banking: I thought we had pretty well hashed that one out. I agreed that there is a 10 X multiplier with a 10% reserve.

        I stand by my statements that if a bank cuts someone a check then their account at the Fed is debited and that loans on a bank’s balance sheet are assets but cannot be counted as reserves. (If I misunderstood your original posting, I apologize.)

        If any of the above facts are incorrect, I reserve the right to revise and extend my remarks.

        • Modern Survival

          Did you read the Federal Reserve Publication that stated when a bank makes a lone RESERVES ARE NOT EFFECTED. Seriously you just can’t ignore shit like that.

    • Modern Survival

      Oh and you can’t have partial liberty! You can’t have personal freedom is you don’t also have economic freedom.

      • Mark Olejniczak

        That sounds like an argument about semantics. We do not need to discuss it, do we?

        • Modern Survival

          No, no it isn’t semantics, how much personal liberty do I really have with some clown like you stealing 40% of my personal wealth annually.

    • *sigh*

      ‘Promotion’ = distortion

      Incentivizing, or punishing a behavior, modifies the actions of participants.. AWAY FROM their actual desires.

      This would work great.. if the ‘god’ engaging in these actions was omnipotent and omniscient, and if all human beings shared the same set of desires.

      Since men are not gods, and since desires do vary, they fail. Spectacularly and regularly.

      Libertarianism tries to recognize human beings, as they are. Including the fact that ‘our government’ and ‘our leaders’ are also.. frail, fallible human beings. Not omniscient gods.

      Humility. The beginning of wisdom.

      • Mark Olejniczak

        I agree with everything that you said.

        Any government activity must be view with suspicion. We must hold our elected officials to a very high standard.

        That is not the same thing as saying that government should do nothing.

      • Mark Olejniczak

        Do libertarians have neither state-able principles nor goals? Or do they think such ideas are unimportant?

        I am asking because I am genuinely interested. If you have principles that forbid any state action ever (total anarchism now), then arguing with a state-ist makes no sense.

        • Modern Survival

          The goal is liberty. Your goals all presume that you know what is good for another man, YOU DON’T. It is a very arrogant thing to say you want a large middle class, do you get why?

  27. A fool does not delight in understanding, But only in revealing his own mind.
    KJV

    Fools find no pleasure in understanding but delight in airing their own opinions. NIV

  28. Libertarian definition of ‘fair’:
    Everyone is treated the same

    Non-Libertarian definition of ‘fair’:
    Some people get special treatment [followed by long rationalization as to why]

    Dictionary definition of ‘fair’:
    ‘Marked by impartiality and honesty: free from self-interest, prejudice, or favoritism.’

    Dear non-libertarians.. choose another word.

    • Mark Olejniczak

      If you look at my goals, fairness is not one of them. That is not to say that I want to be unfair but it is not a goal.

      Let’s put this in US Constitutional terms: I want our political economy to “promote the General Welfare” (preamble). And that congress has the enumerated power to levy and collect taxes to “provide for the General Welfare.” (Article 1 section 8.)

      • Modern Survival

        Oh boy are you getting close now. Notice one is PROMOTE and the other PROVIDE.

        One is to make sure it happens the other to simply create an environment conducive to. Perhaps if you think about that instead of media propaganda for a bit you might get the point?

        Our defense is to be provided by our government, from all enemies foreign and domestic. The general welfare is to be empowered not provided. Man how am I am the only one that seems to understand how important the preamble is. I had a debate with a member of the Supreme Court Barr Association one time. When I brought that up it stopped him cold dead in his tracks.

    • @Mark
      Again your making a statement of ‘belief’ not debating or arguing anything..

      What you are stating is:
      My beliefs about the way the world should be ‘promote the general welfare’.

      That’s nice. As a campaign statement. Its not any sort of compelling argument.

      If you’re interested in what Libertarian’s believe, that’s fine, there are many people more qualified than me to answer that question.

      If your only interested in stating your own beliefs, which frankly sound a lot more like the old soviet union than any sort of constitutional democracy, I’m not really interested. I’ve already heard all of these ‘statements’.. and if I feel I need any more, I only have to turn on the TV, tune into talk radio, or attend a speech of any D or R politician.

      IMO

      Boring. Not original. Not moving towards anything worth spending time on.

      I’ve spent this much time on it because initially I was under the impression you were an ‘idealistic’ college student. As you’re not, without some real effort, you’re too deep in your mental rut to scramble your way out.

  29. Mark Olejniczak

    Economic Feedback Loops

    I sense debate fatigue, so I am submitting this post as food for thought, no reply is needed.

    There are two basic classes of markets, the real-things market and the financial market.

    The real-things market is governed by the negative feedback loop. This means that when prices go up, demand goes down, which takes pressure off of further price increases. When prices go down, demand rises. This means that this market is self-stabilizing.

    The financial market is governed by the positive feedback loop. This is a perverse sort of market. When prices go up, demand actually goes up, this puts further upward pressure on price, which leads to even more demand (Bull Market). When prices eventually fall, demand crashes, and prices crash (Bear Market). This kind of market is inherently unstable and leads to the boom-bubble-bust that we have become familiar with.

    During more stable economic times, the financial market made up about 10% of GDP. Now it is about 30%. No wonder we are having all of this financial turmoil.

    Libertarianism does not seem offer any policy differences between these two market types even though they are fundamentally different.

    • Modern Survival

      I lost any desire to deal with you further when you said you had no desire that a system be fair that it wasn’t one of your goals. At that point anything you say is pretty much worthless to me.

      • Mark Olejniczak

        OK

      • Mark Olejniczak

        Maybe now you see the value of discussing persons’ principles and goals.

        Fairness must be one of your principles or primary goals. Since I do not value it as highly, we have little to discuss in the economic arena. We could have saved a lot of computer bytes by determining this earlier.

        I do value and respect your work on self sufficiency. Keep up that good work.

        Adios.

    • @Mark -

      Debate – To engage in argument by discussing opposing points.

      Well, there ain’t any of that going on. You post a ‘statement of belief’, we destroy it.. you ignore our responses and post another ‘statement of belief’.

      Debate requires a back and forth dialog.. not:
      Statement->Rebuttal->Silence…
      New unrelated statement about a different subject-> Rebuttal->Silence…
      New unrelated statement about a different subject…

      So this latest new subject isn’t worth replying to, your statement about Libertarianism not recognizing different market types is false.. but I know you’re not going to read anything I write trying to explain why..

      Sorry :-(

  30. As a home educating parent I want no funds from any government entity. With money from the government there are ALWAYS strings attached, even in a utopia of small government. Wasn’t this nation founded on leaders that were home educated or went to private non-governmentally funded schools? Using coercion (taxes) to fund something as fundamental as the schooling of our young ones will only lead to tyranny.

    As for taxing businesses, that’s just double taxation. If we are to steal from people to fun the government we should only tax individuals, leave businesses out of it!

    • @Jon -

      On taxing..

      Currently there are different tax rates for different types of legal ‘person’. This allows/encourages ‘gaming’ of taxes. IMO the way to setup a ‘fair’ (even) tax system that doesn’t distort participants actions, is to make the tax rates the same for every activity.

      For Example:
      If you’re an individual, you pay an income tax of 10%
      If you’re an individual, you pay a capital gains tax of 10%
      If you’re a corporation, you pay 10%
      If you’re a corporation, you pay a capital gains tax of 10%

      The difference between this and the current system, where taxes are paid on any money to be distributed to stock holders.. is that in any transfer (dividends) only the receiver would pay tax (on the gains). So, no double taxation.

      To make things REALLY simple, I would suggest that the ONLY tax, be a XFER tax. In other words, anytime MONEY exchanges hands, there is a x% tax. So, not a sales tax, an ‘exchange tax’.

      This completely eliminates all of the ridiculous ‘losses’ current businesses manufacture (things like writing off the book value of the decrease in their ‘brand awareness’) to escape any taxation. If you look at the tax bills for companies like GE, they haven’t made any money in 50 years.. funny how they manage to stay in business.

      Note that I said this would only be for exchanges involving ‘money’. There’s no sense in creating unenforceable and easily avoidable laws (the IRS wanting you to report the ‘fair market value’ of any barter trades you engage in). Of course, this would also encourage recognition of other forms of money (such as metals).

      This is of course in my own private utopia.. nothing this sensible is likely to happen anytime soon. ;-)

      Oh, and even in Jack’s minarchist/future anarchist society.. there has to be some way to distribute the costs for the shared resources (few though they may be), so you do have to do some thinking about ‘taxes’, even if you want to call them something else.

      • How that would work for gains, stock example:

        Today:
        You buy stock for $10
        You sell stock for $20
        You pay a x% tax on the difference ($10)

        Future:
        You buy stock for $10. The person you bought from pays a tax on the $10 received (1%).
        You sell stock for $20. You pay a tax on the $20 received (1%).

        The tax rate is lower (as a percentage) because you’re taxing the total sale, not the ‘gain’.

        Again, the whole point is to get rid of all of the ‘gain/loss’ ridiculousness (people selling on Dec. 31 to ‘lock in losses’ and then re-buying on Jan. 1).

      • In an ordered anarchist society the thinking is already done on the taxes. If you want something, do it yourself or pay someone else to do it, or do without, or have someone help you pay/do it. Wait, that is the current system that we have at the grocery store! Seems to work just fine when you don’t use violence to get to your ends.

  31. Dear Wanna Be Dictators -
    Libertarianism, being founded on the idea of promoting liberty and fairness.. doesn’t have anything for you. Move along. (try socialism down the hall..)

    ;-)

  32. Publicly funded education is not aligned with Libertarian ideals. A school tax to fund a voucher system is taking someones resources to pay for anothers children to be educated. I was surprised to hear the statement about this voucher system providing ‘equal opportunity’ for rich and poor alike.

    • Modern Survival

      @InTheHills

      See this is where libertarians can’t get shit done. There are two worlds the one that can be and the one that is. To get from the one that is to the one that can be requires something called TRANSITION. The current system must be used to deconstruct itself. Right now the taxes are already being taken, there is little to no opportunity to stop that, so yea, let’s just hold our breath, say it is wrong and wait.

  33. Mark Olejniczak

    The unacceptable cost of “fairness.”

    The “fair” tax proposals presented here have one thing in common: huge tax cuts for billionaires and multinational corporations. These are the very people that ARE the Neo-fascists whom we are supposed to oppose. These “fair” tax proposals will greatly increase Neo-fascist power.

    Neo-fascists are evil, but let’s give them a massive tax cut anyway.

    I am being demonized for not accepting this contradiction in libertarian philosophy. Anyway, it should not about me, it should be about ideas, not who presents them.

    Effective tax rates links: Personal, Corporate

    • Modern Survival

      Moron we are done with you! Don’t you get that. The people you are talking about DO NOT and are not going to pay high taxes. You are talking about the elites and you yourself want to give them more power with stateism.

      Begone now and go back to your perfect life of freedom and early retirement that I actually doubt exists at this point. You have the STINK OF TROLL all over you at this point. I caught onto that pretty quick but watching your fail so ever loving miserably is why I let it go on a while.

  34. From Leigh Bortins on giving government money to homeschoolers (since many states have tried to pay home educators):

    Remember: WITH THE SHEKELS COME THE SHACKLES!

    via

    Open Letter On Tax Credits

  35. Ronnie in Iowa ~Veronica Deevers

    http://youtu.be/XJ5R08xDC6c < City on the Hilll

    If we can't learn to use our differences to benefit one another, the lights will indeed go out.

  36. You cannot reason a man out of a position he has not reasoned himself into.
    (Ben Franklin)

  37. On the gay marriage issue, what about the inevitable anti-discrimination laws? Two gay men come to my deeply religious, Christian wife and ask for marriage counseling. She refuses on moral grounds. Either, she is fired, or subject to a lawsuit. That’s where you go from swinging the fists to pounding her face in.

    • @Gman -
      Forcing someone to do something against their will is anti-libertarian, so in a Libertarian society, there would be no ‘anti-discrimination’ laws.

      This is another of those areas where the subject of ‘harm’ has gotten completely out of hand.

      To refuse to freely give someone something that you don’t want to is not ‘harming’ them. If it were, muggers would be able to sue for ‘lack of service’ when you refused to turn over your wallet. (actually, I’m surprised it hasn’t happened..) ;-)

      • @Insidious,

        But Jack’s vision includes idea that it is OK to force someone to do something against their will.

        But in all seriousness, two wrongs don’t make a right, if it did we would continue to live with more and more laws every year that don’t make sense. Oh, wait, that is what is currently happening :-\

        • ;-) – yup

        • Modern Survival

          @Jon you said, “But Jack’s vision includes idea that it is OK to force someone to do something against their will.”

          Really how?

        • @Jack,

          Taxes.

        • Modern Survival

          @Jon see this is why we can’t get a damn thing done as libertarians! For F*&k sake I never said taxes were okay, but I am a realist, we live in a system built on taxation. Such a system can’t just be shut off and when people hold their breath and act like it can the libertarian cause looses all credibility with anyone who isn’t a damn anarchist to the extreme. What do you think would happen if 100% of taxes were stopped tomorrow?

          To suggest a more equitable tax situation as a step in the direction of removing all taxes on income and property isn’t to say they are okay. It is to say that they exist and to remove them they must be deconstructed.

          Your way not only won’t work it can’t work without burning the cities to the ground. My way not only could work it is the only way to get to “there” from “here” without dead bodies and burning cities.

        • @Jack,

          Isn’t Gman making a similar argument? Isn’t he saying, because the system is corrupt that we need to use the system unethically to defend our rights? Like you, saying, because the system is corrupt, i.e., taxes exist and people depend on redistribution, therefore, we must continue taxes and extend taxes to all?

          I understand what you are saying Jack. My main point is that, as you said, anything that goes toward the minarchist ideals also goes to the anarchist ideals. Smaller equals better. But you did propose that we extend taxation onto others that are not currently affected by it now, which is similar position of Gman. I say we don’t extend any aggression and only make things smaller and less intrusive.

          The 1920 crash when the government did nothing created a speedier turn around, likewise, if government stopped functioning I think civil society would reoccur faster than people think. People are mostly civil, there are only a few bad actors which can be dealt with, in a civil society without coercive government (I’m OK with government, just not coercive government, AKA statism). The main reason that we see more bad actors now than in a libertarian utopia is because the system makes people do things that they otherwise wouldn’t. Hence the reason I am more fearful of the US and AZ and town governments than I am of a petty criminal, the current government aggresses against me more than any criminal ever has or (hopefully) ever will.

        • Modern Survival

          @Jon, just stand in the burning building while everyone else walks out.

        • Jack,

          I think you are being unreasonable with me. We are on the same side. All I did was point out a contradiction that you stated. That you would like to extend taxes on more people. Yet, when people like Gman want to do the same thing you lambaste them.

          Government doesn’t create civil society, good self-interested people create civil society. When I drive down the road people stay on their side of the road because they want to live peacefully. There are a few bad actors which occasionally will drive on the wrong side of the road and cause death or harm, but they are in the minority, hence the reason I drive, because I trust most people are civil.

          Coercive government is the antithesis to civil society because the system creates situations where it is beneficial to become a bad actor for reasons of “fairness” etc.

        • Modern Survival

          @Jon all those people are already paying taxes I would just change how they are paying taxes. No this isn’t the same a Gman, again your stance is why libertarians can’t get shit accomplished.

          A flat tax on income by the way is the only fair way to tax income if we are to have it taxed at all.

          Believe what you want but again you can stand in the burning building and say the fire is “wrong” if you want, I want to start working for a solution.

        • @Jon & @Modern Survival -
          First off, its possible to have ‘voluntary taxes’.. for instance does anyone FORCE Christians to tithe?

          But secondly, to Jack’s point, stubbornly holding to a ‘platonic ideal’ of how the world should be is silly and unproductive. Its basically an ivory tower exercise that isn’t really useful in the world we actually live in.

          For example, I don’t really understand how some Libertarians (according to Wikipedia) espouse anarchism. Libertarianism is a proposed social system, and anarchism is a LACK of a social system. So I really see it as a scale from Dictatorship to Anarchism.. with Libertarianism on the right side, but not all the way to NO government.

          Irregardless, some communal functions can be performed without taxation (talking about an ‘ideal’ system).. for instance dispute resolution could be performed by volunteers.

          Again to Jack’s pt, none of us have a magic wand to wave that will instantly create our ideal society.

          So we’re in a fascist state, that we want to leave.. and we’re standing on the road arguing whether at the end of the road there’s a minarchist utopia or an anarchist utopia. All the while not taking a single step down the road towards freedom.

        • @Insidious,

          I’m against statism, not government. So, voluntary taxes are fine, of course, if it is voluntary than it is no longer taxes :) .

          We need to understand the ideal so we know the direction we are going. If we don’t understand the ideal then we wouldn’t be able to identify contradictions. You should read “Healing Our World: In an Age of Aggression” where you find that the ideal is the practical also.

          Holding to this ideal is no different than Jack and his ideal small government society. Neither ideal exists! So what you accuse me of Jack is doing the same!

          Anarchism, used by libertarians is ordered anarchy, not chaotic anarchy. Look up voluntaryism and you will see what I am talking about. It is like liberal vs classical liberal. Modern definition of liberal is antithetical to classical definition of liberal.

          “Irregardless, some communal functions can be performed without taxation (talking about an ‘ideal’ system).. for instance dispute resolution could be performed by volunteers.”

          You make my point.

          “Again to Jack’s pt, none of us have a magic wand to wave that will instantly create our ideal society.”

          What you criticize me for can be criticize for what Jack stated in his podcast as an “ideal” on the way to smaller government. No can wave a wand and make what Jack said in the podcast happen.

          “So we’re in a fascist state, that we want to leave.. and we’re standing on the road arguing whether at the end of the road there’s a minarchist utopia or an anarchist utopia. All the while not taking a single step down the road towards freedom.”

          Knowing where you are going is extremely important otherwise you are a wonderer. Do you get on a plane and tell the pilot, “Take us where you will, as long as we go somewhere!” No, you say, take me where I paid you to take me. Likewise, when we know where the correct end point is we can know what ethical systems are incorrect and try to correct them bit by bit.

          We are all making changes now that will lead us in the correct direction. Jack is spreading the message of liberty and self-ownership and responsibility. I am home educating my kids and refuse government welfare and gardening. That is the path to freedom and liberty, it is a mindset, it isn’t the cronies in DC or at state capitals.

        • @Jack,

          Regardless, income tax is the worst form of taxes because the only way to enforce it is by intrusive government getting into your private life completely contradictory to the 4th amendment. I read somewhere (I think maybe on the Cato Daily Podcast? Not sure.) that the government could pay for everything it does now without an income tax. I don’t know why you would propose that.

          We can get things done, just looking to the government isn’t the solution.

          “A flat tax on income by the way is the only fair way to tax income if we are to have it taxed at all.”

          Like I said, it is the worst evil because it requires the the worst intrusion into individual lives.

          “Believe what you want but again you can stand in the burning building and say the fire is “wrong” if you want, I want to start working for a solution.”

          And so do I. I don’t know why you are fighting me on this. I think my arguments hold.

        • Modern Survival

          @Jon it first of all exhists and flat out all the intrusion already exists a flat tax would reduce the intrusion.

          No, it is not the worst of the worst because two taxes are far worse. First property taxes are far worse because they tax ownership of many times a non income producing assets. The next tax which is even worse is a managed inflation tax. Both of these are wholly inescapable. Inflation as a hidden tax is far worse then income tax because I am taxed even when I loose money.

          Listen, you can not eliminate the income tax overnight, it cannot be done, period the end. Your arguments do not hold, I have proposed a solution, you have proposed NO SOLUTION, you just don’t like mine. If you have a better way to deconstruct the tax system I am all ears.

        • @Jon -
          no criticism, just conversation.. :-)

          I’ll add the book to my reading list.. looks interesting.

          I’m a fan of ordered anarchy.. as soon as we’re ‘mature’ enough to handle it. Hopefully that will be sooner rather than later. ;-)

          [I realize that SOME of us can handle it now.. so that means it is possible.]

        • @Jack,

          Yes, I agree those two would be far worse. Like I said before, arguing about what is the best way for someone to steal from you is a difficult thing because, in the end, it is all not fair and it is all intrusive.

          My argument is simple. Free the minds. Learn what freedom and liberty truly are. Try to live a life as free as possible. Be a good example of what freedom can look like for others. Be caring to others and help each other (e.g., live in a community). There’s not much else I can do. Everything else is just playing fantasy games. I don’t know what a free world would like. All I know is that it is wrong to have slaves, it doesn’t matter that there might not be people to pick the cotton anymore. We’ll figure it out.

          I don’t know how you don’t like my solution. It is pretty much the same as yours that you have stated on podcasts – if I recall correctly. Yes, will I have to pander to my “masters” sometimes to try and keep them from putting a more onerous burden upon me and my loved ones? Yes, but I’ll also recognize that it is not the masters that keep me enslaved, it is those around me (including myself) that have the slave mentality that does it. As shown in “The Politics of Obedience” and “The Bomb in the Brain” series on youtube and Larken Rose’s “The Most Dangerous Superstition.” It isn’t until that cultural shift happens that statism will end, not by force, but by the weight of itself it will fold and die.

        • Modern Survival

          @Jon it isn’t that they could be worse, they ARE worse with ARE being the operative word. Could be would imply they don’t exist yet.

          Now I just heard no solution not one I don’t agree with, one that doesn’t do anything.

          I am saying you and I both want no income tax, my first step would be to remove the “progressive” (socialist) graduating index in it and apply it equally at a VERY LOW 10% rate. This would instantly make the US one of the worlds most competitive markets and provide plenty of funding for the necessary functions of government while requiring many of the unnecessary ones to be cut and done away with. It would also equalize itself as making X dollars an hour would mean meaning X*.9 for every income generating activity, this if you understand the free market would rapidly be priced into the market at all levels.

          The economic boom it would create would begin to show us just how bad taxes are, cut the hell out of them and things get better. No it doesn’t sadden me that the guy making 20K will pay 2K while I pay 20K if I have to pay at all, that is fair to him. Right now what happens is he pays 5K, gets a refund for 7K (earned income credit) and gets 2K of my money. I don’t consider my change unfair to him at all, I consider the current system quite unfair to me and I say this as I am about to go see if the 50K I sent to the IRS last year was enough or not!

          Now what is your solution if you don’t like my solution? The things you allude to are about dealing with the system, at some point you have to start taking it apart, how would you do it? Again we both know you can’t just stop it, you can’t just hit the brakes, you have to disassemble it. If making the current unfair system equally unfair isn’t the first step what is?

        • @Insidious,

          Yes, maturity is an interesting thing. Statism makes us less mature. Freedom makes us more mature. The contradiction of the two systems. So, you have to slow down statism in order to become mature enough to enjoy freedom and liberty. It’s a cultural thing that does it. As I was writing to Jack.

        • @Jack,

          The thing is, it is all pipe dreams. There is no way to make it smaller until it implodes on itself. We have already proven through history that small government with rule of law creates great prosperity. There is nothing else to prove. But people still don’t believe it – because of government schooling, media, etc. The only solution is to break out of the matrix, to take the red pill. Politics be damned, it won’t help us. Sure, we can get some strides from politics but the system is rigged for self-interest like the free market which causes people in politics to want greater control and money – there is no stopping it besides with ideas, that is the only battle. When the system crashes or is reinvented why bother instituting a new tax – because that is what it would be, a new tax.

          That’s why I don’t offer a “solution” because there is no going back to a flat tax unless the system imploded and a new one takes its place. I would rather not have a new system. If there is going to be taxes let the government sell land that it has stolen from the people. I really don’t know.

          Canada was forced to reign in on its finances because it couldn’t borrow any more. The US doesn’t have that problem, it will implode or be forced to deal with it. But there is no way to get it to do a flat tax, it is extremely unlikely. So let’s talk principles and talk about things we can actually cause to change.

      • Actually, from a religious point of view. This would probably be one of the scenarios where you just turn the other cheek, even though your rights are being abused. I would say fight back at first, but if the courts disagree w/ you then turn the other cheek. The whole reason homosexuals abuse people like that is to prove a point. To ignore is to make go away sometimes. Not always though.

        • We can always ‘choose’ a particular action, for whatever motivation. The issue with law is that an ‘unnatural’ penalty is added for choosing particular actions.

          (A ‘natural’ penalty would be something like being killed because you stepped off the edge of a cliff.. no law, policeman or court is required to ‘enforce’ a natural law.)

          And yes, people like to use the law/system as their club, and beat others into submission to their beliefs.. again, anti-libertarian.

          If you’re resorting to the club, rather than to reason, you’re speaking animal to animal.. its not a very ‘enlightened’ discourse. (we could go into the role of the ego in animal nature and child rearing.. but that would be wandering into the weeds).. ;-)

    • Modern Survival

      What about that? You cross that bridge when you come to it, that argument is a complete non starter. No different then stating well if we allow marijuana some people might steal to support their habit or if we allow hi cap mags some people might use them for a mass shooting.

      This is also highly overblown. There is no law that says any councilor has to take any patient and no one has ever sued successfully for this. This is nothing like a person going to get a prescription filled at a pharmacy and being told no. Any councilor can refuse any patient that they don’t feel they could help.

      Now could you be sued for it? Yea and you could be sued for wearing a green shirt too.