The Handbook of Human Ownership – A Manual for New Tax Farmers — 42 Comments

  1. Excellent video.

    I think that Molyneux wanders dangerously close to Pie in the Sky libertarianism around the 1:02:00 mark. I fully disagree that all of the sociopathy we have in society is a direct result of childhood trauma through corporal punishment. These sorts of gross generalizations are inappropriate for one with the mental acumen of Molyneux. But I digress; the rest is quite enjoyable to listen to for a Friday. Thanks!

  2. I think there are alot of truths here. However I disagree with what is implied regarding ethics. Dr Ambedkar said about the constitution of India he had just written, if it is implemented by good people it will good.if by bad people it will be bad(paraphrased). One drop of urine spoils the ideological soup. Nuff respect

  3. I listen to him quite a bit but one episode he went on a side rant about how he wishes the Illuminati would call him, and he wants “That big red phone”. I think he does possesses some contempt for those of us who may not share his intellect

  4. The Stefan Molyneux piece seems to be based on the same basic idea or breakdown of statist class structure Ayn Rand put forth way back when – I think she refered to the slaves as “the Human Ballast”. – whether her idea originally I don’t know. It has been an very useful conceptual device for me.

  5. I used to listen to Stefan, he has a lot of good ideas but I got tired of his megalomania. A bit cultish saying that people shouldn’t look at any criticism of him but “think for themselves” yet only read his books, etc. Having left an authoritarian religion I see similar signs in him. So, I can’t really listen to him especially since he encourages DEFOOing from people’s parents, even from the good ones, because, of course, Stefan is the only good parent this world has to offer.

    I know I might be a little over the top, but Stefan has some issues.

    • Stefan interesting, but probably not the best poster boy for Librertarianism.

      • First Stefan is NOT a libertarian he is an anarchist.

        Second the audio sounds narcissistic because it is written from the perspective of the elites.

      • I would consider Stefan an extreme side of libertarian. Which I am too. I just disagree with the non-aggression principle/natural rights. There is a spectrum of libertarianism and Stefan falls on the far side of it. Stefan has his flavor of NAP, but even he admits that, in the end, it doesn’t matter, because you have the “Don’t be a dick” rule where you can throw out contracts if society thinks that person is being a dick. Although I agree that the NAP can be a good heuristic it doesn’t necessarily reflect reality.

        And, although I outlined some of Stefan’s faults. I do think he does have some positive things to society. But, it is just dangerous putting him out there because he has caused good families to break up with his Defooing, encourages people to not think for themselves, and runs his inner circle similar to how Ayn Rand did with her inner circle in a cult like manner. Now, that doesn’t mean that Stefan is all bad, he has his good parts, it is just that he is extreme and cultish.

        If you would like I can link to a podcast where they talked about some of these problems.

  6. Not sure why I can’t reply to Jack’s reply…

    Anyway, Molyneux is, from my experience with his ideology, a libertarian:

    He speaks with authority on libertarianism(and uses the first person plural “we” when talking about libertarians/libertarianism):

    He also answers the “unanswerable” questions directed at libertarians:

    …which would be much less dramatic if he were, say, a mere anarchist. At very least, he is an anarco-capitalist that has a very libertarian philosophy vis-a-vis the non-aggression principle. Please let me know if I am missing something.

    At any rate, I really appreciate the occasional libertarian/anarchist/free market philosophical material. It tends to draw me into the comments more to read what fellow TSPers think.

  7. The most important thing to consider is that no one, not Stefan, not Jack, no one should be the single opinion you base your life off of. If you do not find yourself disagreeing with things people are saying, you are either in too deep, or not thinking enough for yourself. With that said, thanks for sharing this Jack.

    • Exactly it amazes me how quickly people dismiss anyone who says one thing or has one view they disagree with.

    • Again, no, sorry. I was a libertarian small l at one time, I am now an anarchist, it is NOT the same philosophy. Further anarchism is not a political philosophy, it is an anti political philosophy.

  8. Jack, what’s that you’ve said about any data set, that you can make it say anything with the correct manipulation. Isn’t this what Molyneaux is an expert at doing, looking at past events and fitting them to an ideology. Hind sight is 20/20.

    • Unlike some people I don’t worry about EVERYTHING that anyone says or does, I worry about what they say that is insightful, useful and accurate. As you can’t even begin to get your head around Anarchism you won’t like any thing he says or likely accept any point that he makes. I mean it is simple Jose, you have no idea what anarchism is, just as I didn’t myself not that long ago. There word has been so corrupted that it takes an effort to really get past the lies, one apparently only a few people care to make.

    • I don’t want to delve into the wonders of anarchism or libertarianism (L or l) or their degrees of difference. But I have yet to hear an anarchist make a case for anarchy while living in a stateless society. They always seem to preach from the comforts brought to them by the state: good internet connection, good roads, peace, etc… It’s their combined air of superiority and hypocrisy that just doesn’t make them credible. A hobo living under a bridge would make a better case for living free. Perhaps is Stephan wrote to us from a tent in one of the Canadian fjords, the closest he could get to stateless society, I might take him more seriously.

      I get his points, but most are academic and unattainable. The standard is simply too theoretical, devoid of practical use. At least for me, that is.

      • @Jose

        There’s a whole bunch of podcasts and books on anarchism to check out if you want to dig deeper. In fact, I’ve been doing that myself recently just because I felt pretty ignorant about a lot of it. Turns out, it’s a really big subject with a lot of different ideas and opinion, but a very rich history.

        With regards to being too “academic and unattainable” or “too theoretical” – the same was more or less once said of the idea of a United States of America or even the abolition of slavery. Big things start with big ideas. Some make it, some don’t, and some just have to wait for the right time.

        • I totally agree with you Chad.

          I think there is something larger too that holds many back and I know it held me back from understanding I already was an anarchist.

          It is the well how would we __________ questions and how would __________ work questions.

          The person who looks at anarchy with no understanding wants those answers now, the anarchist knows that we will figure things out as we go and that the journey is long, likely longer than our own lives. The anarchist is thinking 6-7 generations forward. (I didn’t think about it when I typed generations forward, isn’t that interesting).

          The problem is people think in terms of libertarian, republican, socialist, democrat, etc, etc, etc, etc. All involve a great deal more thinking about other people and far less thinking about yourself and in the most negative way possible. Not as in, “oh that poor man that I can actually see right there is cold and needs my help”, but in the manner of, “If someone doesn’t steal our money and give it to that cold man he might get angry and steal in a far more violent way”.

          Yes absolutely when you start at the top, “anarchy for all, now” which is the mentality of all statists, no matter what they call themselves, libertarian, republican, democrat, etc. does not matter, the ideology is lets get our guys in, take over and fix the stuff everyone else fucked up, right?

          Where as the anarchist can’t even allow himself to think as such, as no matter how benign the theft and use of violence it is still a violation of his principles. Murder is murder, a title or a uniform doesn’t change that. Theft is theft, being pronounced a “tax collector” doesn’t change that.

          No what is VERY hard to understand is the day you say I am an anarchist, changing and controlling others by any means goes out the window!

          Jose, yes the concept of an anarchist world is largely intellectual and unattainable, for now, absolutely correct. But I think, we would both agree, if the population had sufficient ethics and morality, it would be the best solution right? The only thing preventing it is really how OTHERS behave right?

          Okay well guess what that shit doesn’t apply to Jose and his immediate Garcia family that he leads does it?

          Which means what is largely unattainable in Jose’s eyes is immediately attainable in his life!

          The question is not how many people have sufficient ethics and morality to live without a state, no, it is only do I have sufficient ethics and morality to live without a state?

          If your answer to that is YES you do, then in YOUR LIFE, what do you NEED THEM FOR? As long as they rob and steal from you, you may have to adapt at the interactive edges between your family and them, but you don’t have to willingly give them any more energy, blood, treasure and legitimacy than is absolutely necessary to for your family to be left alone.

          You know I didn’t get it until recently but this is the very picture of anarchy right here, might as well change the B on the coat to an A.

          No Jose you can’t make sure the guy down the street is moral and ethical enough to be an Anarchist, but YOU YOURSELF can be one. You can raise your children, your family to be such people, you can influence others to awaken to said reality. And we can both die old men some day a long way from where the journey ends but not regret our own lives.

          Yes what is absolutely unattainable in a lifetime is attainable in a millisecond once you focus on that which you actually control.

      • Question re: anarchy. In an “anarchist” society, how would the following “offenses” be dealt with? Are we talking about vigilantism? Honest question.
        *Gross, intentional polluters

        I think “rule of law” is a good and legitimate function of gov’t would/could be to enforce laws and contracts between parties. But also believe we have a gov’t that has written far too many laws, is far to pervasive, and has invaded way too far into the private lives of the people. But mankind does need a curb. What is that curb in an anarchist society? Threat of retaliation? Again, this is not a criticism, it’s a question.

        • You know what I have learned trying to answer such questions for people is pointless.

          Try this how will you deal with yourself as to not polluting, not defrauding and not stealing from others?

          Will you choose to do these things? If no law prevented you from dumping shit in the street would you just go out and do it?

          If no law prevented you from going into your neighbors home and stealing his stuff would you?

          Further if no law prevented you from selling land that didn’t exist to the stupid and gullible and keeping their money, would you do it?

          I am guessing the answer is no, no and no, right?

          So what prevents you from being an anarchist?

          Your questions echo though out history in many variations.

          Without slaves who will pick the cotton?

          If we release the slaves they will kill all the land owners, what then?

          Without the feudal order how will land be managed, how will people be protected without the wisdom and power of the nobles?

          If the church doesn’t have power (actual power) who will enforce morality?

          How will we _______? Is the point, not the objection.

          Anarchy is 7th generational thinking. Not tomorrow morning or next election cycle thinking. This is about YOU not others. Tune in to today’s show for more.

          Let me put it this way, your continued support of the state will have little effect on it. Your participation is about as relevant to the outcome of the next election or war as a logo is to the functioning of a pair of jeans. Do you really get that?

          However your withdrawal and refusal to support theft, murder, cohesion, etc. is immediately relevant to your life and those around you.

          Here is the biggest secret, all the people you fear most under anarchy, are opposed to anarchy! Let that bang around in your bean for a bit!

        • All good points, Jack!

          People and governments gain strength and power through our cooperation.

          Government types tend to think like this:

          Got a complaint? We’re happy to help you: here, just fill out these forms in triplicate and wait in line. Thank god we’re here for you!

          What’s that? You make money braiding people’s hair? You’ve been doing it for the last five years? We better get in there and make sure it all comes through us first. God, what would everyone do without us???

          ….but who really needs who?

          “…how indifference makes then rage what can one say? i will not obey”

        • @Modern Survival,
          I understand about this being “7th generational thinking.” Hell, even something as simple as a fair tax, which is nothing close to anarchy, is generational thinking at best. We are so far off the rails…

          Back to anarchy: I think that in order for anarchy to “work” in your mind, you have to believe that man is intrinsically good. That “natural law” (or some other moral force written on the hearts of man or universally accepted) makes him capable of doing the right thing. No, I wouldn’t dump used oil in a stream even in the absence of a law…but some people would. I know, because I’ve seen it. I’m not being elitist, there are plenty of other things I would likely do if it weren’t for the deterrent of the law and threat of punishment. Speed significantly, is just one simple example.

          To some extent, even a libertarian approach to environmental issues (which I am very interested in) requires “perfect knowledge” with respect to the issues. How to you put a value on the environmental services of a small stream running through your back yard? What level of phosphorus is OK in that stream. It depends on your intended use of the water. How good is good enough, and what’s it worth? These are difficult questions that make implementing free market approaches challenging (but again, something I would definitely support).

          So anarchy requires an intrinsically good human that always does right with perfect knowledge about the external effects of one’s actions. Neither exists (in my world view). Now, big governments suffer from the same problems and for the same reasons oppress people. But their has to be a curb, whether it’s natural law, the 10 commandments, the Torah, or something else….

          Maybe you’re suggesting that anarchy isn’t perfect, just better than what we have. You might sway me on that one…I don’ care what kind of system we have, it will never be a utopia.

        • No you only need to believe in YOUR ability to do that which is right and believe that there are others like you. Period, the end. You don’t need perfect knowledge, you don’t need any spiritual authority but you are free to seek them. The state has murdered more people then any other force, to consider them necessary at this point isn’t very rational. And you do claim to be rational, right?

        • Oh and the ten commandments? This is perfect law? A law that makes a wife property is perfect law?

        • And lastly, no one is claiming that anything will be utopic, well except the state that is. That in fact is the promise of both socialism and religion, and all governments become socialist. Every single one.

        • As Jack said, anarchy isn’t utopia. The market isn’t perfect. I would say that a market failure is the government itself. People have to “evolve” to a better life by freeing their lives. Just like an animal that is closed in an electric fence that can free itself easily, but refuses to see it. People can too, it will just take time to free their minds through the sharing of ideas.

          A good book on what anarchy might look like is called *Healing Our World in an Age of Aggression* where Mary outlines how statism has caused more harm than existed before.

          Pennsylvania (the Quakers) had 8 years of glorious anarchism. Many other places have lived in anarchy also.

        • @jon, wow forgot about the Quakers! Also anarchy existed of all things under Joseph Stalin. In the post WWII society thousands were not just killed and imprisoned but also banished. Taken by train into Siberia and kicked off the train near the end of the route and told simply come back and you die. A lot died but many did not, said people self organized and thrived for decades until years later when Russia became aware of them and you guessed it, decided to offer them assistance and help. Sigh.

      • @Jack,
        Thanks for the elaborate explanation. The picture makes a lot of sense. Sure, I can choose to be an anarchist immediately in those aspects of my life where I can, without landing in jail or getting a divorce. Seven generations ahead, huh? If anarchy worked it would have already, by itself, in some place in the current or past world, exist. I don’t meant a small, group of people living in compound somewhere claiming to be anarchist. I mean a country with culture and commerce completely devoid of government regulations where people merely transacted in mutually beneficial transactions. A place where the people came together and built a sanitation system so that they wouldn’t die of cholera. In many ways, hearing anarchists explain their utopia is like hearing communists explain theirs, there is always someone in the way of the system working. In the case of the communist, if only the collective were forced to act in the good of the group, communism would work. In the case of the anarchist, if only the individual acted morally the system would work. Both sides have an air of condescension when they explain their system to the unwashed masses. My God, you can cut it with a knife.
        I already try to keep the government out of my life as much as possible. Does that make me an anarchist? Hell no. I’m still bound by all the other crap in society where the government chooses to intervene: property tax, gas taxes, tolls, marriage license, building permits, etc… Sure, I could go live in a cave and assert my ‘victory’ over the man, the system, and find myself divorced and homeless in about a month, too. Or I can work within the confines of the system and try to build as much liberty as possible for my family and me. Maybe that makes me anarchist, except that I voted last time, but since my vote did not count, we’ll call it a wash.
        I don’t want to get in your hair about this but it doesn’t add up in my head. Maybe one day the whole world will kumbaya in a stateless society and then the overlords will descend from their space ships and takes us all to happy place. Until then, I’m holding on to God, the Bible, and my guns. (small print) Any similarity to redneck talk is merely a coincidence and/or a figment of the reader’s imagination. I don’t claim to be a redneck, or in any way wish to mock one.

        P.S. Please tell me which commandment says that my wife is my property so I CAN PRINT IT AND GLUE TO THE FRIDGE DOOR.

        • In the 1880s a man wanted to close the patent office because he felt everything that would be worth inventing had been invented, was that guy your great grandfather? This statement sounds awful familiar to that,

          “If anarchy worked it would have already, by itself, in some place in the current or past world, exist.”

          Further you still don’t know what anarchy is, it is not the absence of rules, only the absence of the state. With that accurate definition, guess what, man has existed longer in anarchy than in a state of archy.

          The human race largely existed as an anarchy until the dawn of modern agriculture. Agriculture by the way means “field culture”, not growing plants but managing fields. For that one needs slaves, and so on.

          As to what commandment says your wife is your property, “Neither shalt thou covet thy neighbor’s wife; neither shalt thou desire thy neighbor’s house, his field, or his man-servant, or his maid-servant, his ox, or his ass, or anything that is thy neighbor’s.” Deuteronomy 5:21

          The wife is lumped in with house, field, slaves (servants), oxen, asses and all other property.

          The wife of the day was property. Sure some progressive religious like to change it to spouse, but that ain’t what is says.

          In other passages it states if a man defiles a virgin he had to pay restitution to her FATHER. Why? He owned her until he sold her into marriage when she became her new husbands property.

          And don’t be pissed at me, I didn’t write it.

    • Com’on Jack, my grandfather was an anarchist for trying to close down a government office. Unless the patent office back then wasn’t part of the government in wish case what power would it have, right? Before the dawn of agriculture societies existed perhaps without formal states but nonetheless with governance that used force, which if understand correctly is a no-no in anarchism. Just going by what Stefan said. The Comanche’s were loosely associated but they were freaking ruthless. Their plundering and rape would be more akin to the conventional, corrupted if you will, definition of anarchy, aka shtf.

      • Wow two misses on one swing?

        Closing the office would have been fine! It was the REASON given! Jeeze wow, WTF dude how’d you miss that?

        Okay one more time,

        Anarchism doesn’t equal no rules
        Anarchism doesn’t equal no force

        Anarchism equals no state, not no rules

        Anarchism equals no force, OTHER than in resistance to force, NOT NO FORCE EVER.

        Anarchist societies are voluntary. Don’t want our rules, off you go, you are on your own. We don’t care bye bye. If you don’t leave and find your own way or attempt to use force, THEN YOU GET FORCE.

        Again no one is promising you won’t have “Comanche” to deal with, just that is can be done if necessary. Again this is very hard to grasp due to DECADES of programming on your mind.

        Again 7th generation and beyond thinking, YOUR PERSONAL LIFE, etc.

        One more time, those who you most fear would never support the concept of anarchy!

  9. There’s a guy whose podcast I regularly listen to, Mark Passio.

    Mark has a lot of his presentations posted on youtube, as well as his website. He is a great wealth of knowledge for all things related to personal freedom. He does a 3 hour radio show on Sat night that is uploaded as a podcast on Monday. Listen to him for a while, and you’ll get a much clearer picture of what anarchism is.

    The word literally means, “Without rulers”

    • That’s the point! Anarchy is not the absence of a system or “a system” it is the individual choice of a system.

      One could think of it as a far more distributed and voluntary model of a republic.