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kaz
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Re: The Thread for Jeff to Answer Questions
Reply #30 - Jan 7th, 2019 at 7:43am
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Jeff wrote on Jan 7th, 2019 at 7:34am:
Perhaps, but philosophically and theoretically, rights and granted powers are very different. Rights are inalienable, granted powers can be removed. On a moral level, denial of rights is wrong, evil even, and removing granted powers is neutral or even good.

Language is important. "Progressives" know that, which is why they seek to confuse granted powers with rights, to establish a basis in language, which becomes a basis in thought, that governments have rights and individuals are granted privileges by governments.


Well Enos, you're right about the difference between rights and powers, but you're wrong that leftists are doing it knowingly.  They don't grasp the difference.  They aren't trying to establish the idea that government has rights and we don't.  To them, it's a given.

Also, it's an important concept to keep in mind.  But when you're an ass about it like you like to be when you raise the point, your point gets lost and the only point you make is that you're an ass
  

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Jeff
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Re: The Thread for Jeff to Answer Questions
Reply #31 - Jan 7th, 2019 at 7:43am
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Little Big Man wrote on Jan 6th, 2019 at 11:20am:
Ok, so where does the right to grant that power come from?  Your first answer, that it comes from a right to form a government, is not correct.  Because individuals cannot band together to create rights as a collective that they did not already possess as individuals. 

The right to create a government that defends us from theft comes from our individual right to own property and to defend ourselves as you correctly stated.  The right to form a government that itself engages in theft does not come from any individual right.

So, enlighten me:  Where does it come from?
I'm not talking about granting government a power to steal.

I'm saying that the right to form governments to protect rights includes the right to grant those governments the power to actually protect rights.

You've already agreed to that, that constituted governments can be granted police powers to act in our behalf.

My claim is that constituted governments granted the power to protect rights can be (must be) granted the means to accomplish that purpose, and that taxation to support the means to accomplish the purpose intended is not theft, but a legitimate way of funding the means of securing the protection of rights that is intended.

You would have a government granted police powers to protect rights but denied any means of funding the actual protection. You would have a government formed to protect everyone's rights that existed on paper only.
  
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Re: The Thread for Jeff to Answer Questions
Reply #32 - Jan 7th, 2019 at 8:58am
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Jeff wrote on Jan 7th, 2019 at 7:43am:
I'm not talking about granting government a power to steal.


Technically, it is extortion, i.e. obtaining something, especially money, through force or threats.

It doesn't become not extortion because the government does it.

If your friend said, "Jeff, there's this group of people who are forcing me to give them 872 dollars out of my bank account every month.  They say that if I don't do that, they will take all the money from my bank account and kick me out of my house and sell it!"  You would say, "Dude, that's extortion!"  You'd be right, no matter who the group was, even if it was the IRS.

Quote:
I'm saying that the right to form governments to protect rights includes the right to grant those governments the power to actually protect rights.

You've already agreed to that, that constituted governments can be granted police powers to act in our behalf.


Yes, in that case we are delegating our right to self-defense to a government.  There is no right to extort money from others so I cannot delegate that right to a government

Quote:
My claim is that constituted governments granted the power to protect rights can be (must be) granted the means to accomplish that purpose, and that taxation to support the means to accomplish the purpose intended is not theft, but a legitimate way of funding the means of securing the protection of rights that is intended.


That's like saying, "I want my daughter to have a wonderful wedding, with a huge reception to follow."  Great.  Have at it.  You have every right to give your daughter a nice wedding.  But my agreeing that your daughter should have a nice wedding doesn't mean that I agree that you are now rightfully empowered to extort people to get the money for it.  If I object to that, you can't reasonably say, "You already said my daughter should have a grand wedding, so that means I can do what I need to pay for it!"

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You would have a government granted police powers to protect rights but denied any means of funding the actual protection. You would have a government formed to protect everyone's rights that existed on paper only.


No, I've stated several ways to fund government without extortion and you only answer is to ridicule the idea, not to make any counter-arguments.

Let me ask you another one, Jeff.  If people have a right to form government and that right necessarily includes the right to empower that government to take money by threats and force, is there anything that such a government cannot rightfully be empowered to do?

I'm trying to think of a ridiculous example, like government can't tell you to kill your brother or government can't kill you or government can't send you to a frozen wasteland against your will, but all of those things are things you support government doing. 

Where, if anywhere, do you draw the line?
  

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Re: The Thread for Jeff to Answer Questions
Reply #33 - Jan 7th, 2019 at 9:19am
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Little Big Man wrote on Jan 7th, 2019 at 8:58am:
No, I've stated several ways to fund government without extortion and you only answer is to ridicule the idea, not to make any counter-arguments.


You've made the statement that governments can be funded by donations. (Statements aren't arguments.)

My response has been to say that human nature argues against that working, and that history shows it's never happened.

I'm perfectly willing to start arguing against taxation as soon as you can show me that it won't lead to anarchy and tyranny.

You can find excellent arguments in Robert Nozick's Anarchy, State and Utopia that should convince you that private protective services will be anarchic until one becomes strong enough to overpower the rest, at which point you will have tyranny.

Of course Nozick's thought experiment assumes that moral libertarians are involved through the entire process of creating private protective services, so that the end result is not tyranny but a moral limited government.

Are you assuming a world full of moral libertarians? I think so. That makes your claims utopian and unrealizable in the real world.
  
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Re: The Thread for Jeff to Answer Questions
Reply #34 - Jan 7th, 2019 at 9:24am
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Little Big Man wrote on Jan 7th, 2019 at 8:58am:
Let me ask you another one, Jeff.  If people have a right to form government and that right necessarily includes the right to empower that government to take money by threats and force, is there anything that such a government cannot rightfully be empowered to do?


People have a right to form governments in order to protect everyone's rights equally.

It's quite possible for people to form governments that are tyrannical and can do whatever they want. I'm speaking of governments like that of North Korea, and assuming that their government was formed by people.
  
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Re: The Thread for Jeff to Answer Questions
Reply #35 - Jan 7th, 2019 at 9:45am
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Jeff wrote on Jan 7th, 2019 at 9:19am:
You've made the statement that governments can be funded by donations. (Statements aren't arguments.)

My response has been to say that human nature argues against that working, and that history shows it's never happened.

I'm perfectly willing to start arguing against taxation as soon as you can show me that it won't lead to anarchy and tyranny.

You can find excellent arguments in Robert Nozick's Anarchy, State and Utopia that should convince you that private protective services will be anarchic until one becomes strong enough to overpower the rest, at which point you will have tyranny.

Of course Nozick's thought experiment assumes that moral libertarians are involved through the entire process of creating private protective services, so that the end result is not tyranny but a moral limited government.

Are you assuming a world full of moral libertarians? I think so. That makes your claims utopian and unrealizable in the real world.


There is some truth to that.  When local communities would voluntarily pay someone to be the government, it always led to tyranny. 

We need to evolve a bit to be willing to accept the responsibility of protecting ourselves, since allowing others to protect us, voluntarily or not, has always led to an authoritarian government.
  

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Re: The Thread for Jeff to Answer Questions
Reply #36 - Jan 7th, 2019 at 11:45am
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Jeff wrote on Jan 7th, 2019 at 9:24am:
People have a right to form governments in order to protect everyone's rights equally.


"Equally?"

Why would it have to be "equally?"

You are seriously stating that unless a government protects everyone's rights equally, people have no right to form it?

Which governments have been legitimate under that definition?

  

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Re: The Thread for Jeff to Answer Questions
Reply #37 - Jan 7th, 2019 at 2:43pm
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Little Big Man wrote on Jan 7th, 2019 at 9:45am:
There is some truth to that.  When local communities would voluntarily pay someone to be the government, it always led to tyranny. 

We need to evolve a bit to be willing to accept the responsibility of protecting ourselves, since allowing others to protect us, voluntarily or not, has always led to an authoritarian government.
Right. Lots of people do accept the responsibility of protecting themselves so far as they are capable.

Having the police around to deal with organized criminal gangs is still a necessity, and it's nice to be able to go to work and continue on with your life after you've been robbed and have the police find who robbed you and recover your property and bring the thief to justice.

I know, I know, the police where you live don't do any of that, so you have to do it yourself or hire a PI, and everybody knows from movies that individual vigilantes and PIs are far more effective than police...


  
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Re: The Thread for Jeff to Answer Questions
Reply #38 - Jan 7th, 2019 at 2:44pm
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Little Big Man wrote on Jan 7th, 2019 at 11:45am:
"Equally?"

Why would it have to be "equally?"

You are seriously stating that unless a government protects everyone's rights equally, people have no right to form it?

Which governments have been legitimate under that definition?

It's that equal protection of the law thing that you can't understand.
  
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Re: The Thread for Jeff to Answer Questions
Reply #39 - Jan 7th, 2019 at 3:11pm
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Jeff wrote on Jan 7th, 2019 at 2:44pm:
It's that equal protection of the law thing that you can't understand.


I understand it.  I just want to make sure you aren't going to backpedal again.

You seriously say that no government can legitimately tax unless it provides equal protection? 

Then name a government that has ever been legitimate under that criteria?


  

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