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Very Hot Topic (More than 25 Replies) Rules and Enforcement (Read 991 times)
BobK71
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Rules and Enforcement
Feb 8th, 2019 at 10:24am
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You could say this is the essence of civilization.  What types of rules exist, and how they are enforced, in the public sphere, define a civilization.

EpsilonTheory.com has a recent piece that expounded on two dimensions: large vs small sets of rules, and loosely vs strictly enforced.

A large set of rules strictly enforced is a tyranny.  Few people want to live in those.

Capitalism is a good embodiment of a small set of rules, strictly enforced.  You're not allowed to violate someone else's body or property, and that's about it.  Countries that stick the closest to capitalism today tend to be considered the wealthiest and freest.

Loose enforcement of a large set of rules makes those rules tolerable, but societal and personal life are a constant struggle to get something desirable done.  Most countries probably fall under this poorly-run category.

Note that, in countries like China and Russia, a large state-run sector in the economy is effectively a large set of rules.  (The minute the state owns a business, that entire business and piece of the economy is part of the public sphere.)  The same applies to a large tax burden that feeds a large bureaucracy.

A small set of rules, loosely enforced, is an approach to anarchy and even failed-state conditions.  Since (as Margaret Thatcher has argued) this situation can be even less tolerable than tyranny, the society is likely to change into something else, and no one knows what that might be.  Such an unstable environment is not a good place to live or invest in.

Again, I largely plagiarized it, but thought it's pretty neat.
  
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The Opposition
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Re: Rules and Enforcement
Reply #1 - Feb 8th, 2019 at 10:47am
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Actually, when you add civil law, capitalism is an infinite set of rules, loosely enforced.

What could you get sued for? Literally anything.

Do you know if you're going to be punished in advance, before you engage in the act in question? Nope.

The poor aren't going to get sued, because they have nothing to take, and the super rich have the best defences, so this is also classism - the same exact act is punishable for a normal person, and not for the poor or the rich.

I still say only capitalism is moral, and I agree with how civil law is implemented.
  

This moral relativism of yours is exactly what lets government take this freedom, then that freedom, until we have lost them all.
-SnarkySack
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BobK71
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Re: Rules and Enforcement
Reply #2 - Feb 8th, 2019 at 11:17am
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The Opposition wrote on Feb 8th, 2019 at 10:47am:
Actually, when you add civil law, capitalism is an infinite set of rules, loosely enforced.

What could you get sued for? Literally anything.

Do you know if you're going to be punished in advance, before you engage in the act in question? Nope.

The poor aren't going to get sued, because they have nothing to take, and the super rich have the best defences, so this is also classism - the same exact act is punishable for a normal person, and not for the poor or the rich.

I still say only capitalism is moral, and I agree with how civil law is implemented.


You are right, strictly speaking, when looking into a detailed view and/or 2nd-order conditions.  I was taking a very broad view.

You and I probably live in Britain and America, and hopefully we don't stay awake worrying about being sued.  That's a good sign, as long as we stay clear of 2nd-order hell.
  
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Jeff
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Re: Rules and Enforcement
Reply #3 - Feb 8th, 2019 at 1:14pm
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The Opposition wrote on Feb 8th, 2019 at 10:47am:
Actually, when you add civil law, capitalism is an infinite set of rules, loosely enforced.

What could you get sued for? Literally anything.

You misunderstand. The common law applies a few simple precepts to an infinity of possible real world situations.

Here's an example: If you cause harm to another person or their property, you are liable to make restitution for the loss. There are an unknowable number of ways you could cause harm to another person or their property.

See how easy that is?
  

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The Opposition
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Re: Rules and Enforcement
Reply #4 - Feb 8th, 2019 at 9:22pm
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Jeff wrote on Feb 8th, 2019 at 1:14pm:
You misunderstand. The common law applies a few simple precepts to an infinity of possible real world situations.

Here's an example: If you cause harm to another person or their property, you are liable to make restitution for the loss. There are an unknowable number of ways you could cause harm to another person or their property.

See how easy that is?


It's plenty easy if you don't care whether people have a right to know if their actions are legal or not before they undertake them.

I'm not talking about taking a baseball bat so someone's car. I'm talking about someone trespassing on my property suing me for a slip-and-fall.

Can I remove every object that might cause someone to slip and fall, from my house? Nope. If they want my money (I'm sorry, their money that they're entitled to) they'll find something to slip on.
  

This moral relativism of yours is exactly what lets government take this freedom, then that freedom, until we have lost them all.
-SnarkySack
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Jeff
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Re: Rules and Enforcement
Reply #5 - Feb 9th, 2019 at 7:54am
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The Opposition wrote on Feb 8th, 2019 at 9:22pm:
It's plenty easy if you don't care whether people have a right to know if their actions are legal or not before they undertake them.

All you need to know is that you are responsible for the consequences of your actions and that the law holds that harming others or damaging their property is wrong.
  

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Jeff
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Re: Rules and Enforcement
Reply #6 - Feb 9th, 2019 at 7:59am
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The Opposition wrote on Feb 8th, 2019 at 9:22pm:
I'm not talking about taking a baseball bat so someone's car. I'm talking about someone trespassing on my property suing me for a slip-and-fall.

That would be an injustice, to hold you responsible for an injury that you didn't cause...
Unless maybe you somehow forced the faller to trespass on your property?

Don't forget, it's not just you that is responsible for the consequences of your actions, the trespasser is also responsible for the consequences of his actions. You have no obligation to protect lawbreakers from the consequences of their actions.
  

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The Opposition
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Re: Rules and Enforcement
Reply #7 - Feb 9th, 2019 at 11:16am
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Jeff wrote on Feb 9th, 2019 at 7:59am:
Don't forget, it's not just you that is responsible for the consequences of your actions, the trespasser is also responsible for the consequences of his actions. You have no obligation to protect lawbreakers from the consequences of their actions.


If civil law worked like this, I'd feel a lot more comfortable saying it's not an infinite set of laws, but it doesn't, and it is an infinite set of laws, with no way to avoid breaking them but pure luck.

For example, there's no way I can prevent people from throwing drinks on my property, then slipping on them.

If I have some money someone else wants, and they have a good lawyer, I am responsible for injuries caused to the trespasser, and yes, that includes leaving a hot wheels car on the top stair.

If I did that, and the trespasser would not have suffered injury without that, then my act did cause the injury, and I'm 100% liable.

Civil law is not concerned with the responsibility of the slip-and-faller to avoid an injury, even by requiring him to refrain from breaking the law. You can research these; they're simplified, but true.

https://9gag.com/gag/ayngjoW/the-most-ridiculous-lawsuits-that-have-been-won-all...

Here's a link for the last one.

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/northamerica/usa/11155731/13m-lawsuit...
  

This moral relativism of yours is exactly what lets government take this freedom, then that freedom, until we have lost them all.
-SnarkySack
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Jeff
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Re: Rules and Enforcement
Reply #8 - Feb 9th, 2019 at 2:46pm
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The Opposition wrote on Feb 9th, 2019 at 11:16am:
If civil law worked like this, I'd feel a lot more comfortable saying it's not an infinite set of laws, but it doesn't, and it is an infinite set of laws, with no way to avoid breaking them but pure luck.

For example, there's no way I can prevent people from throwing drinks on my property, then slipping on them.

If I have some money someone else wants, and they have a good lawyer, I am responsible for injuries caused to the trespasser, and yes, that includes leaving a hot wheels car on the top stair.

If I did that, and the trespasser would not have suffered injury without that, then my act did cause the injury, and I'm 100% liable.

Civil law is not concerned with the responsibility of the slip-and-faller to avoid an injury, even by requiring him to refrain from breaking the law. You can research these; they're simplified, but true.

https://9gag.com/gag/ayngjoW/the-most-ridiculous-lawsuits-that-have-been-won-all...

Here's a link for the last one.

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/northamerica/usa/11155731/13m-lawsuit...
It's up to the judges to make it clear that holding someone responsible for some harm or damage when the harm was the fault of someone else is unjust and violates the precepts of our law.

Or in the case of the poor unfortunate person who didn't actually grow wings after drinking Red Bull, that no harm is done to you simply because you had completely unrealistic expectations that were not met.

Again, the judge is at fault for even letting the case proceed. Would a reasonable person believe she was going to sprout wings after drinking Red Bull? No. Therefore the claim that you were harmed because you didn't sprout wings is not actionable. It is a completely unreasonable assertion. You won't be allowed to recover damages from anyone when you finally discover that Santa Claus is not real either. Cool

The fact that idiot anti-capitalist juries are sometimes empaneled with idiot anti-capitalist judges and decide to soak some capitalist company for a big wad of their "ill gotten and evil profits" (and enrich the lawyers in the process) is an unfortunate byproduct of "progressive" ways of thinking. It has nothing to do with the law.


  

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The Opposition
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Re: Rules and Enforcement
Reply #9 - Feb 9th, 2019 at 2:54pm
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Jeff wrote on Feb 9th, 2019 at 2:46pm:
It's up to the judges


That's right, it's up to the judges. And the juries.

Instead of having clear rules about what you can and cannot do, civil law leaves it up to people to decide whether any action was punishable by law.

This is an infinite set of rules, loosely enforced.
  

This moral relativism of yours is exactly what lets government take this freedom, then that freedom, until we have lost them all.
-SnarkySack
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