In some areas, a radical distinction between private persons and government officials is acknowledged in existing law and opinion. Thus, a private individual’s ‘right to privacy’ or right to keep silent does not and should not apply to government officials, whose records and operations should be open to public knowledge and evaluation.
There are two democratic arguments for denying the right to privacy to government officials, which, while not strictly libertarian, are valuable as far as they go: namely (1) that in a democracy, the public can only decide on public issues and vote for public officials if they have complete knowledge of government operations; and (2) that since the taxpayers pay the bill for government, they should have the right to know what government is doing.
The libertarian argument would add that, since government is an aggressor organization against the rights and persons of its citizens, then full disclosure of its operations is at least one right that its subjects might wrest from the State, and which they may be able to use to resist or whittle down State power.
Dismantle Public Education
“The real reason our standards in education are falling isn’t because of a lack of money but a government monopoly. Learn of the libertarian alternative that could save our children.”
Being forced to vote in the Brisbane City Council Elections on Saturday. Wish I could have seen the ballot counters face when they came across the above.
- Daily Bell: Let's jump right in. Why is democracy "The God that failed?"
- Dr. Hans-Hermann Hoppe: The traditional, pre-modern state-form is that of a (absolute) monarchy. The democratic movement was directed against kings and the classes of hereditary nobles. Monarchy was criticized as being incompatible with the basic principle of the "equality before the law." It rested on privilege and was unfair and exploitative. Democracy was supposed to be the way out. In opening participation and entry into state-government to everyone on equal terms, so the advocates of democracy claimed, equality before the law would become reality and true freedom would reign. But this is all a big error.
- True, under democracy everyone can become king, so to speak, not only a privileged circle of people. Thus, in a democracy no personal privileges exist. However, functional privileges and privileged functions exist. Public officials, if they act in an official capacity, are governed and protected by "public law" and thereby occupy a privileged position vis-à-vis persons acting under the mere authority of "private law." In particular, public officials are permitted to finance or subsidize their own activities through taxes. That is, they are permitted to engage in, and live off, what in private dealings between private law subjects is prohibited and considered "theft" and "stolen loot." Thus, privilege and legal discrimination — and the distinction between rulers and subjects — will not disappear under democracy.
- Even worse: Under monarchy, the distinction between rulers and ruled is clear. I know, for instance, that I will never become king, and because of that I will tend to resist the king's attempts to raise taxes. Under democracy, the distinction between rulers and ruled becomes blurred. The illusion can arise "that we all rule ourselves," and the resistance against increased taxation is accordingly diminished. I might end up on the receiving end: as a tax-recipient rather than a tax-payer, and thus view taxation more favorably.
- And moreover: As a hereditary monopolist, a king regards the territory and the people under his rule as his personal property and engages in the monopolistic exploitation of this "property." Under democracy, monopoly and monopolistic exploitation do not disappear. Rather, what happens is this: instead of a king and a nobility who regard the country as their private property, a temporary and interchangeable caretaker is put in monopolistic charge of the country. The caretaker does not own the country, but as long as he is in office he is permitted to use it to his and his protégés' advantage. He owns its current use — usufruct — but not its capital stock. This does not eliminate exploitation. To the contrary, it makes exploitation less calculating and carried out with little or no regard to the capital stock. Exploitation becomes shortsighted and capital consumption will be systematically promoted.
Who are the two most historically important people to Western Civilization?…
Arguably, but I think agreeably - Socrates and Jesus Christ…
What killed Socrates and Jesus Christ?
Based solely on notes which doesn’t always mean much in terms of what I liked most, but is obviously a good indicator of what others enjoyed. Original posts.
- What’s Democracy? [Image], 1,042
- Circular Reasoning [Image], 546
- Paul Krugman Meme [Image], 245
- Peter Schiff I am the 1% [Image], 223
- Legalising Drugs Would Send the Wrong Message to Kids [Image], 202
- CNN Talks to Ron Paul about the Newsletters [Chat], 165
- Minimum Wage [Image], 134
- Ron Paul on Jay Leno [Image], 118
- Quote from Butler Shaffer [Quote], 109
- Libertarianism is not a complete moral philosophy [Quote], 87
- Particularistic Ethics [Image], 81
- Austrian School vs. Keynesian Economics [Image], 77
- Radicals [Quote], 71
- Rothbard’s conversion to anarchism [Chat], 66
- Ron Paul vs. Media [Image], 65
- Constitutional Convention [Quote], 64
- Ron Paul vs. Ben Bernanke [Image], 61
- Ron Paul Meet the Press Interview [Video], 56
- Society Without a State [Quote], 50
- Perfect System [Image], 50
- State Operates in a Legal Vacuum [Quote], 46
- Philosophical Squabbling with Libertarians [Response], 40
If anyone is interested in the rest I suggest having a browse through the following content tags: text, image, quotes, link, chat, music, video. Or these: personal, response, me. Hopefully some of these help defend / spread the message in some capacity.
“In conjunction with the privatization of all assets according to the principles outlined, the government should adopt a private property constitution and declare it to be the immutable basic law of the entire country. This constitution should be extremely brief and lay down the following principles in terms as unambiguous as possible:
Every person, apart from being the sole owner of his physical body, has the right to employ his private property in anyway he sees fit so long as in doing so he does not uninvitedly change the physical integrity of another person’s body or property. All interpersonal exchanges and all exchanges of property titles between property owners are to be voluntary (contractual). These rights of a person are absolute. Any person’s infringement on them is subject to lawful persecution by the victim of this infringement or his agent, and is actionable in accordance with the principles of proportionality of punishment and of strict liability.
As implied by this constitution, then, all existing wage and price controls, all property regulations and licensing requirements, and all import and export restrictions should be immediately abolished and complete freedom of contract, occupation, trade and migration introduced. Subsequently, the government, now propertyless, should declare its own continued existence as unconstitutional-in so far as it depends on noncontractual property acquisitions, that is, taxation-and abdicate.”
— Hans-Hermann Hoppe, Democracy: The God that Failed
I’m currently working my way through Democracy: The God that Failed by Hans-Hermann Hoppe. It’s kind of blowing my mind.
Ron Paul has it in his recommended reading list (in the Democracy section of Liberty Defined). For all those who are interested, here is the bootleg free pdf.
One argument made is presented here in this video, it is a compared to argument. Democracy is not the best system society has tried.
The Failed God: Democracy - Hans-Hermann Hoppe. Contrary to popular belief, democracy is not the best system that has ever been tried. Presented here is the argument: “of two evil things so to speak, that monarchy is the lesser evil as compared with democracy.” What Hoppe advocates is called the natural order.
Since socialism cannot arise without the expropriation of assets originally “created” and owned by individual homesteaders, producers, and/or contractors, all socialist property, ill-begotten from the very start, should be forfeited. No government, even if freely elected, can be considered the owner of any socialist property, for a criminal heir, even if himself innocent, does not become the legitimate owner of illegitimately acquired assets. Because of his personal innocence he remains exempt from persecution, but all of his “inherited” gains must immediately revert to the original victims, and their repossession of socialist property must take place without their being required to pay anything. In fact, to charge a victimized population a price for the reacquisition of what was originally its own would itself be a crime and would forever take away any innocence that a government previously might have had.”
More specifically, all original property titles should be recognized immediately, regardless of who presently owns them. In so far as the claims of original private owners or their heirs clash with those of the current assets’ users, the former should override the latter. Only if a current user can prove that an original owner-heir’s claim is illegitimate - that the title to the property in question had initially been acquired by coercion or fraudulent means - should a user’s claim prevail and should he be recognized as the legitimate owner.