Libertarian's Forum
Libertarian Forum to discuss politics and free market economics.
Libertarian's ForumLibertarian's ForumFreedom Forum › A Libertarian Thought Experiment
Page Index Toggle Pages: [1] 2 3 4 Send TopicPrint
Very Hot Topic (More than 25 Replies) A Libertarian Thought Experiment (Read 206 times)
Jeff
Libertarian Freedom Member
*****
Offline

Libertarian's Forum

Posts: 22054
Location: USA
Joined: Feb 26th, 2014
A Libertarian Thought Experiment
Nov 7th, 2017 at 4:16pm
Print Post  
Just ruminating, I wondered-
After the 13 English colonies in North America got together and won their independence from England-

Wouldn't the libertarian thing to do have been to abolish the Colonial governments and just live together and trade with each other and find private solutions for everything?

Can you imagine how many good things would have probably ensued?

Except that England, or Spain, or France would have pretty quickly turned them back into Colonies.... Drat!

I didn't like that probable outcome, so I pretended that the Colonial Empires of the time, the expansionist superpowers of the day, didn't exist. Whew! What a relief!

But then I thought, what if you went into my garage during America's time of real liberty (no government) and stole my chain saw. Cry

Maybe we should have at least kept the Courts and the common law they administered? And I presumed we did, but as private fee for service organizations.

So I went to one of the local magistrates (my cousin's husband as it happens is in the magistrate business) and filed a complaint. The fee for that in our sparsely populated mostly crime free area is $100. Then I hired 14 people to sit on a grand jury to evaluate the evidence and decide if you should be indited. This cost me only lunch for 14 of my friends, and pretty quickly after lunch, they indicted you. That cost me another $200.
Next I hired someone to serve you, give you notice that you will have come to the court I hire and answer the charges against you before the judge and jury I hire- wait a minute- that's going to cost another $300, maybe $400...

I'd be better off to just buy another chain saw, or maybe I would choose to get some friends together with guns and come to your house and take my chain saw back. That would be cheaper, and if you resisted at all, we could shoot you and I wouldn't have to worry about you stealing from me again!

I'l think more about this.
  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
Don_G
Libertarian Freedom Member
*****
Offline

Libertarian's Forum

Posts: 5069
Location: British Columbia
Joined: May 8th, 2017
Re: A Libertarian Thought Experiment
Reply #1 - Nov 7th, 2017 at 4:27pm
Print Post  
Nothing to think about. In a corrupt society the gun solution is the sure winner!
  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
Jeff
Libertarian Freedom Member
*****
Offline

Libertarian's Forum

Posts: 22054
Location: USA
Joined: Feb 26th, 2014
Re: A Libertarian Thought Experiment
Reply #2 - Nov 7th, 2017 at 4:38pm
Print Post  
Don_G wrote on Nov 7th, 2017 at 4:27pm:
Nothing to think about. In a corrupt society the gun solution is the sure winner!
You aren't very good at this disruption thing... But it's to be expected that a third rater would be assigned to this forum.

The fact that you stole my chainsaw doesn't make society corrupt, it just means you are a thief.

I know Marxist theory posits that you only stole my chainsaw because "capitalism", but it's really a thoroughly discredited idea. Being a thief is a human failing, the fact that I saved and invested out of my wages and started a business that did pretty well and provided me with a comfortable income has nothing to do with your immoral nature... That's just you.
  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
burnsred
Libertarian Freedom Member
*****
Offline

Libertarian's Forum

Posts: 789
Joined: Sep 11th, 2017
Re: A Libertarian Thought Experiment
Reply #3 - Nov 7th, 2017 at 9:02pm
Print Post  
Jeff wrote on Nov 7th, 2017 at 4:16pm:
Just ruminating, I wondered-
After the 13 English colonies in North America got together and won their independence from England-

Wouldn't the libertarian thing to do have been to abolish the Colonial governments and just live together and trade with each other and find private solutions for everything?

Can you imagine how many good things would have probably ensued?

Except that England, or Spain, or France would have pretty quickly turned them back into Colonies.... Drat!

I didn't like that probable outcome, so I pretended that the Colonial Empires of the time, the expansionist superpowers of the day, didn't exist. Whew! What a relief!

But then I thought, what if you went into my garage during America's time of real liberty (no government) and stole my chain saw. Cry

Maybe we should have at least kept the Courts and the common law they administered? And I presumed we did, but as private fee for service organizations.

So I went to one of the local magistrates (my cousin's husband as it happens is in the magistrate business) and filed a complaint. The fee for that in our sparsely populated mostly crime free area is $100. Then I hired 14 people to sit on a grand jury to evaluate the evidence and decide if you should be indited. This cost me only lunch for 14 of my friends, and pretty quickly after lunch, they indicted you. That cost me another $200.
Next I hired someone to serve you, give you notice that you will have come to the court I hire and answer the charges against you before the judge and jury I hire- wait a minute- that's going to cost another $300, maybe $400...

I'd be better off to just buy another chain saw, or maybe I would choose to get some friends together with guns and come to your house and take my chain saw back. That would be cheaper, and if you resisted at all, we could shoot you and I wouldn't have to worry about you stealing from me again!

I'l think more about this.


You make excellent arguments against anarchy.  I suggest you go on an anarchist board and stump 'em!

The libertarian thing to do would be to establish a standing navy to protect vital shipping and serve as a deterrent to England, Franc and Spain in their idea to make us into colonies again.  No standing federal army needed since Americans were well armed and used to working together in local and state militias.  Those should be sufficient to ward off any attempt to re-colonize.  In fact, that isn't hypothetical.  England tried to pull that in 1812 and sure enough, a standing navy and an army formed from the militias stumped 'em!

Your description of the disproportionate expense of prosecuting a lawn mower thief is accurate under the system you describe, but not under our existing system.  Under our existing system, such a prosecution is far more expensive, requiring hours of police wages, lawyer salaries (with taxpayers paying lawyers for both sides), a judge's salary, jury fees and court security.   Point is that the costs you describe are still there under a libertarian system or our existing system.  But in a libertarian system, it's up to the consumer to decide whether prosecuting the petty criminal that stole his lawn mower is worth the cost or not. 

You seem to imply that you would be fine with all that expense pursuing a lawnmower thief as if he were Jean Valjean as long as "everyone" is paying for it instead of just you.  Which is not unusual.  When we pay for things collectively rather than individually, money seems less of an object.  Which is why medical care costs skyrocketed once insurance and/or government began paying them.

I literally had a lawn mower stolen from my house shortly after I moved into it.  Of course I called the police and waited hours for them to take a report.  They said that the serial number would be entered into a database and if the guy tried to pawn it, it would come up stolen.  I asked if he had ever heard of a thief being caught that way and of course he had not.  So we more often than not spend all that money for no results at all.

  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
Jeff
Libertarian Freedom Member
*****
Offline

Libertarian's Forum

Posts: 22054
Location: USA
Joined: Feb 26th, 2014
Re: A Libertarian Thought Experiment
Reply #4 - Nov 8th, 2017 at 7:04am
Print Post  
burnsred wrote on Nov 7th, 2017 at 9:02pm:
You make excellent arguments against anarchy.  I suggest you go on an anarchist board and stump 'em!

The libertarian thing to do would be to establish a standing navy to protect vital shipping and serve as a deterrent to England, Franc and Spain in their idea to make us into colonies again.  No standing federal army needed since Americans were well armed and used to working together in local and state militias.  Those should be sufficient to ward off any attempt to re-colonize.  In fact, that isn't hypothetical.  England tried to pull that in 1812 and sure enough, a standing navy and an army formed from the militias stumped 'em!

Your description of the disproportionate expense of prosecuting a lawn mower thief is accurate under the system you describe, but not under our existing system.  Under our existing system, such a prosecution is far more expensive, requiring hours of police wages, lawyer salaries (with taxpayers paying lawyers for both sides), a judge's salary, jury fees and court security.   Point is that the costs you describe are still there under a libertarian system or our existing system.  But in a libertarian system, it's up to the consumer to decide whether prosecuting the petty criminal that stole his lawn mower is worth the cost or not. 

You seem to imply that you would be fine with all that expense pursuing a lawnmower thief as if he were Jean Valjean as long as "everyone" is paying for it instead of just you.  Which is not unusual.  When we pay for things collectively rather than individually, money seems less of an object.  Which is why medical care costs skyrocketed once insurance and/or government began paying them.

I literally had a lawn mower stolen from my house shortly after I moved into it.  Of course I called the police and waited hours for them to take a report.  They said that the serial number would be entered into a database and if the guy tried to pawn it, it would come up stolen.  I asked if he had ever heard of a thief being caught that way and of course he had not.  So we more often than not spend all that money for no results at all.

Who would pay for this navy you envision without taxation?

If everyone who had a lawnmower or chainsaw stolen had to bear all of the costs themselves, very few lawnmower thieves would ever be prosecuted. The community would either be constantly plagued with the theft of property of relatively low value, or people would take the law into their own hands. The idea of "Let's hire a full time Sheriff" was not imposed from above by government, but created by free people who wanted to live in safer and more civilized communities. (And believe me, when the Sheriff's Dept. and the jail are paid for out of local property taxes, people in communities like mine pay attention to how much money is spent and often refuse to raise the tax rate.)

This is a very different situation than collectively paying for healthcare. Not paying collectively for healthcare does not result in a constant plague of burglaries and/or people shooting their neighbors over the theft of a chainsaw.

My time on a county grand jury saw a constant stream of thieves caught when they pawned stolen goods or took heat pumps to the scrapyard.


  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
burnsred
Libertarian Freedom Member
*****
Offline

Libertarian's Forum

Posts: 789
Joined: Sep 11th, 2017
Re: A Libertarian Thought Experiment
Reply #5 - Nov 8th, 2017 at 7:55am
Print Post  
Quote:
Who would pay for this navy you envision without taxation?
Owners of ships that wish to sail the seas unmolested by pirates and tyrants.

Quote:
If everyone who had a lawnmower or chainsaw stolen had to bear all of the costs themselves, very few lawnmower thieves would ever be prosecuted.
As opposed to our current system which has a high conviction rate for petty thievery?  Give me a break.  We need to worry a lot more about the government robbing us of half our income at gunpoint than about a guy taking our garden tools because we (including myself) didn't bother to build a shed.
Quote:
The community would either be constantly plagued with the theft of property of relatively low value, or people would take the law into their own hands.
Or padlock sales would go up and more people would keep dogs in their yards.

Quote:
The idea of "Let's hire a full time Sheriff" was not imposed from above by government, but created by free people who wanted to live in safer and more civilized communities. (And believe me, when the Sheriff's Dept. and the jail are paid for out of local property taxes, people in communities like mine pay attention to how much money is spent and often refuse to raise the tax rate.)
In the American frontier that was true.  But the original concept of a sheriff originated out of the feudal system when rulers realized that to avoid an outright revolt, they had to at least pretend to provide service to the subjects.  So each count appointed a county sheriff with the stated mission of keeping the peace.  But even then, the sheriff was little more than a tax collector and enforcer of the Count's will.  You know - the Sheriff of Nottingham?

Westerners who at first carried guns to protect themselves would often pitch in and hire a gunmen as sheriff instead out of laziness or more likely a desire to have both hands free to earn money.  All well and good until the gunman hired more gunmen and decided to set - and enforce - his own rates.

Quote:
This is a very different situation than collectively paying for healthcare. Not paying collectively for healthcare does not result in a constant plague of burglaries and/or people shooting their neighbors over the theft of a chainsaw.
No, it just results in constant plagues of - well - plagues.  Not to mention people dying of cancer because they can't afford treatment and dying of easily preventable diseases because they can't afford preventative care.  See?  Your argument for government initiation of force to pay for police is precisely the same as other statist arguments for initiation of force to pay for health care.



Quote:
My time on a county grand jury saw a constant stream of thieves caught when they pawned stolen goods or took heat pumps to the scrapyard.
But was the cost of the grand jury, the courts, the police, the jails and the prisons worth the satisfaction of seeing scrap thieves get their comeupance?  A free market system would answer that question with perfect accuracy!

But you can answer this one yourself:  Did you and twenty-two or so of your fellow solid citizens really have nothing more productive you could have been doing than listening solemnly to accusations of weedwhacker bushwhacking and pressure washer snatching?

To quote Gunny Hartman:  "There's nothing I hate worse than an unlocked foot locker!  If it wasn't for DICKHEADS like you, there'd be no thievery in the world, would there?"
« Last Edit: Nov 8th, 2017 at 10:01am by burnsred »  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
Jeff
Libertarian Freedom Member
*****
Offline

Libertarian's Forum

Posts: 22054
Location: USA
Joined: Feb 26th, 2014
Re: A Libertarian Thought Experiment
Reply #6 - Nov 8th, 2017 at 10:16am
Print Post  
burnsred wrote on Nov 8th, 2017 at 7:55am:
Owners of ships that wish to sail the seas unmolested by pirates and tyrants.
At the time we're talking about, merchant ships were often armed... But you think there were enough private shippers from the colonies who were prosperous enough to finance the construction and arming and manning of a navy that could protect them from the British, French and Spanish? Every shipper would demand that a "navy" warship accompany their merchant vessel. Who would be left to fulfill the role of a navy protecting the collective unorganized colonies?
  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
Jeff
Libertarian Freedom Member
*****
Offline

Libertarian's Forum

Posts: 22054
Location: USA
Joined: Feb 26th, 2014
Re: A Libertarian Thought Experiment
Reply #7 - Nov 8th, 2017 at 10:22am
Print Post  
burnsred wrote on Nov 8th, 2017 at 7:55am:
As opposed to our current system which has a high conviction rate for petty thievery?  Give me a break.
Stealing lawnmowers and chainsaws and heat pumps isn't petty to the people who have to pay to replace them, and yes, our current courts convict quite a lot of such people.

But we weren't comparing current conviction rates to the supposed conviction rates in private courts (which I posit would be 100% if you could actually get the thieves into a court that you hired), we were contrasting the current system with the likelihood of people shooting their neighbors for theft of a chainsaw because they couldn't afford  the services of a private court or it didn't make economic sense when all you had lost was a $400 lawnmower.
  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
Jeff
Libertarian Freedom Member
*****
Offline

Libertarian's Forum

Posts: 22054
Location: USA
Joined: Feb 26th, 2014
Re: A Libertarian Thought Experiment
Reply #8 - Nov 8th, 2017 at 10:26am
Print Post  
burnsred wrote on Nov 8th, 2017 at 7:55am:
In the American frontier that was true.  But the original concept of a sheriff originated out of the feudal system when rulers realized that to avoid an outright revolt, they had to at least pretend to provide service to the subjects.
Who cares where it originated? Sheriffs in the American Colonies were hired to enforce the common law, and we carried both over into the new states. People in new communities liked the idea and hired their own Sheriffs because they wanted their new communities to be safe civilized places to live and work and raise families.
  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
Jeff
Libertarian Freedom Member
*****
Offline

Libertarian's Forum

Posts: 22054
Location: USA
Joined: Feb 26th, 2014
Re: A Libertarian Thought Experiment
Reply #9 - Nov 8th, 2017 at 10:29am
Print Post  
burnsred wrote on Nov 8th, 2017 at 7:55am:
But was the cost of the grand jury, the courts, the police, the jails and the prisons worth the satisfaction of seeing scrap thieves get their comeupance?
The value to the entire community of keeping theft to a minimum is worth it.
  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
Page Index Toggle Pages: [1] 2 3 4
Send TopicPrint
 
Libertarian's ForumLibertarian's ForumFreedom Forum › A Libertarian Thought Experiment
Libertarian's Forum

Libertarian's Forum Information Rules, Agreement and Privacy Policy