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Posts from Terry Berg, Occidental, CA

Terry Berg, Occidental, CATerry Berg, Occidental, CA
Terry Berg, Occidental, CA

LOL - Carl knows where the 'real goods' are.

Terry Berg, Occidental, CA

The funny thing is that when the 'shit' gets too high in anyone's 'back yard', it eventually overflows into the neighbors' 'yards'. That amount of 'shit' then becomes a responsibility (to the collective) by (on the part of) the 'irresponsible' 'owner' of the 'shit' whether they 'like' it or not. It also becomes a responsibility of the other members of the collective in such a way that they will be justified in the actions required to 'enforce' some sort of abatement. The sticking point in such 'issues' invariably boils down to 'what amount of shit is too much'. That's where a consensus (generally expressed in 'laws') needs come into play such that 'individuals' don't have free rein to exercise their 'personal' prejudices in making assessments affecting their neighbors (community or 'collective' if you like). 'Communities' without restrictions on the 'free rein' of individuals dis-integrate into 'law-less' (ness) and cease to be able to function to provide the benefits (and compromises) of 'community'. The need for the requisite 'consensus' on which 'law' is predicated, as well as some mechanism by which to arrive at such a consensus, clearly violates the 'libertarian' view that 'individuals' can, at their own discretion, abstain from adherence to the 'laws' thus generated without being subject to the attendant consequences.

I don't know how one would construct such an 'overflow' ('overflow' in the abstract) issue as constituting a situation such that "the collective has NO rights other than the rights the individuals possess".

Terry Berg, Occidental, CA

E. A.; I hate to be the bearer of bad news but you 'joined' the 'collective' by being born. That was when you 'agreed' to abide by it's 'rules', like them or not - and - when you walk down the street you have constant, innumerable, never-ceasing 'duties' at all times. There are no property boundaries to 'duties'. 'Liberty' is not 'license'. It's not even 'license' to ignore. Ignorance is no excuse - for any-thing.

Terry Berg, Occidental, CA

David is as precisely on target as anyone could possibly ever be - as relates to responsibilities and collectives (the 'society' which Bastiat claims "is contrary to Nature") - he did say "In addition ... .

As relates to conscience, there is no such thing as a 'collective conscience'. Using a term like 'collective conscience' is pretending a fictional construct is an actual entity. We do that a lot. We make up 'noun-subjects' that don't exist and then proceed to use them in sentences as though they were 'some-thing' when, in fact, they're 'no-thing'.

No one knows nothing and he knows it best.

Terry Berg, Occidental, CA

"Write 20 pages in bold, purple, italics -- your 'shouting' hasn't convinced me." - 'Convincing' you is not my aim. That would be futile. My aim is to draw out your views. So far, so good.

Terry Berg, Occidental, CA

Sorry - "who are the defenders of Freedom that you endorse?" -- I can answer that when you can define for me what you mean by 'freedom'.

Terry Berg, Occidental, CA

If (too many) facts are sarcasm then so be it. The funniest part is that this dodge is coming from the sarcasm capital of the country. That's funny. Someone needs to peel the air-brush layer off of this 'Virgin Mary' ideology and expose some of the pustules. If you have an issue with my selections, you can hardly take issue with my having provided the link to the whole paper.

I have no idea if you're afraid of it but, if you're afraid of "collective ownership of the economy under the dictatorship of the proletariat", I'd have to classify that as slightly unrealistic or slightly paranoid - not impossible (hell, we went to the moon), just highly unlikely (less likely than the next moon landing under GWB let's say) - hence its inapplicability to our discussion in practical terms. It's 'NICE' language for a scare tactic, just not a practical likelihood.

"A multitude of words does not increase the argument against freedom." - Oh but you presume too much - again. Reading 'into' is not reading. You should have the 'freedom' you seek, and all that attends it.

I read the article: Voluntaryism: The Political Thought of Auberon Herbert. That was not another point of view. That was another person's version of the same point of view.
Now I'm convinced that, for adherents to this ideology, the most extreme positions imaginable can never be extreme enough. But then, that's the definition of 'radical', isn't it? Herbert is one of many Jim Jones types of philosophers. The Kool-Aid looks really refreshing, and there are eager converts who imagine themselves as pioneering 'independent' thinkers, who are 'on to' the 'Truth' and a 'new' way. It's reassuring to make up road markers to coincide with where you wish you were going when you're lost. If the shoe fits ...
Even J. A. Hobson is given pause according to this (Voluntaryism) piece and he's libertarian. He appears to be backing gingerly away from a nut case.

There's a small issue with allodial title to land: when a property owner dies and leaves ownership to more than one heir, the allodial status of the property is lost. Also, allodial title cannot be mortgaged (it can't be used as collateral because it's under allodial title rules). This would prevent millions of those who want to buy homes using a mortgage loan vehicle from availing themselves of that option. Now there's a pioneering innovation.

" -- we are simply playing Monopoly with someone else's money, and all the pieces end up back in the box." : Well, when 'we' go 'back' in a box, do you expect to take the 'pieces' with you?

Terry Berg, Occidental, CA

Well, now we know that you obey either God or the Devil. Thus you are absolved from shouldering the responsibility for setting your own direction. At least it's consistent.

Terry Berg, Occidental, CA

The 'real' electors may be Diebold.

Terry Berg, Occidental, CA

Well, now there's a controversy for you! Kudos Ashdown!

Terry Berg, Occidental, CA

Who knew the great libertarians hung out with the likes of Socrates, Plato and Aristotle? Ah well, live and learn.

Terry Berg, Occidental, CA

E. A. - "I did not say you invented the word Individualist" - Who said you did? (Where did that come from?)
What I did say was that it was not my term, which implies, for those conversant with English, 'in this instance of usage'. It's the usage on the link named by the term. If you're not comfortable with AHD, I could go to my OED2 but I'll use Webster's unabridged if you like. AHD matches fairly well in the 'common usage' category with Webster's unabridged while the OED tends to be a history of usage, most of which usage tends to be 'archaic' and less useful in this particular context. The American Heritage Dictionary is roughly equivalent to Webster's Collegiate Dictionary. I have yet to see you supply any definitions. If you don't like the definitions I supply, do some 'radical' legwork and please supply your own, from the reference of your choice, if it's not too much trouble for you.

I'm sorry to hear you referring to semantics (Merriam-Webster) as a 'game'. Perhaps that's the value of precise articulation in your view. Poetry would free you from most of the annoying constraints of English usage but, so far as I can ascertain, this is not a poetry site.

"Yes, I read the links you included (not that I have to)" - Did someone say you had to? BTW, it was not the 'list' that mattered. it was the attendant information as relates to this ideology. The 'list' simply points to further reading for anyone so inclined. If you are saying that 'list' is the gist of the links, you've, once again, misread.

"So, no, simply posting a page of individualists did not evoke any sense of shock or awe." - Was it supposed to? I would be 'shocked' and 'awed' (but no longer surprised) to hear that you read such intent into what I wrote.
These links were supplied to frame the debate in its historical perspective. I don't think it's any secret that you subscribe to the same ideology as Milton Friedman and company. A historical perspective on that ideology might (or might not) be useful to other readers of this site.

You happen to like Bastiat. I find him to be a romantic (Merriam-Webster) buffoon, full of haughty, self-serving puffery, draped in lavish amounts of supposition and political ideology (offered as 'supporting' lemmas), then 'baked' in overwrought pseudo-logic. He was a perfect exponent of the Zeitgeist of his era. The fashion of the time. It's a matter of taste I suppose - like the haute couture of the day - the 1840s that is, whalebones and all. His simplistic, philosophy-based 'economics' (if you can even call it that) gave us John D. Rockefeller and the Standard Oil Company (1863-1911). Thanks for that Freddie. Oh, and thanks for the 'inspirational' vagueness of your writing too. It's nice to see your Christ-like resurrection.

As a political ideologue, Bastiat was, well, compelling. Applying his 'ideology of economics' to actual economics however, is like applying religion to medicine - it's perennially in vogue with some people - with mixed results. Bastiat's stance was a political one, not an economic one. I expect this accounts, in large measure, for his appeal in some circles. He speaks to philosophy with elegance and fervor. As an 'economist' Bastiat was, at the very best, inept. - to wit: "It also seemed to me that this analysis of the Social Contract was useful in showing what characterizes artificial social orders. Start with the idea that society is contrary to Nature" -- Frederic Bastiat, Economic Harmonies

Now There's an insight!

From a proponent of Bastiat:
[Indeed Bastiat is generally not even considered an economist and is certainly not considered an economic theorist. Joseph Schumpeter, the eminent historian of economic thought called Bastiat "the most brilliant economic journalist who ever lived" but concludes, "he was not a theorist." Another renowned Austrian economist, F.A. Hayek failed to defend Bastiat against this charge in his introduction to Bastiat's collected works. Even his intellectual biographer claimed that with respect to economics, Bastiat "made no original or significant additions to the science."]

"twisting my words about GWB" - Please enlighten me on this one unless, of course, this 'twisting' too, was 'made up' of whole cloth.

"IMHO GWB has 'taken liberties' with his post ..." - Isn't 'taking liberties' what so-called 'radical individualists' do?

"-- and to say only 'radical individualists' support laissez-faire is certainly a stretch.": Yes it is, and let me congratulate you on being the first to say it.

Terry Berg, Occidental, CA

Well David, did it occur to you that I didn't say what Archer said? It's hard to answer the question "Do you mean (to say) . . . " when it wasn't something I said.

BTW, small point, "Highly inconvenient" is a teensy bit different from "illegal activity" but that may be more detail than you're interested in.

Terry Berg, Occidental, CA

E. A.; Like I said - no amount of fact ... - 100-120 years ago we had the 'Gilded Age'. I expect you'd like to go back to that. Did you bother to actually check out the links or are you stuck on only quotes pages?

"individualists" - not my term - sorry to disappoint. It's a term used by historians to describe an ideological group by people who use those sorts of terms (click the link). I don't mind using '-ist' or 'ism'. I just know how it tends to be 'heard' in settings where people have a strong ideological investment (like that which your misreading evidences). It's usually either the final dismissive word or seal of approval before a smile of self-satisfaction siezes their faces with both talons, like when GWB utters 'freedom', as opposed to just being a 'neutral value' descriptive term.

I don't regard 'Individualism' as a dirty word. The term 'radical individualist', however, denotes a particular ideology in historical circles and is in use by historians as a descriptive shorthand for people promoting that ideology. You clearly think that's an ideology to be promoted. Given the historical track record of how that ideology has consistently fostered breathtaking abuses by its adherents, I disagree.

I'm also sorry to say that there are no 'dirty words' as far as I'm concerned - even the 'Hollywood forbidden 7'. All words have their place. It sounds like not just a few folks here have long lists of 'dirty words' however - mostly 'ists' and '-isms'.

GWB - 'not operating under' laissez-faire? I don't even know how to respond to that - ostrich maybe?

Terry Berg, Occidental, CA

Have we gone from M.M. to B.M. here? ... I really like using "highly inconvenient" as a justification for calling 911 - LMFAO!
Now, that's a 'mass movement' ferya. 'NICE' - lol.

Terry Berg, Occidental, CA

Auberon Herbert was one of the 19th century's English 'radical individualists' .

Laissez-faire did fail - time and again and will do so - again. See: Standard_Oil,Archer_Daniels_Midland,Enron.

Even George Bush thinks he should be left alone to do as he pleases because we will 'laisser lui faire' as he pleases. He's been right so far and, if history is any guide, may continue to be so.

While it may be true that 'Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it', it's also true that 'Those who do learn from history are doomed to repeat it as well.'
Belief (ideology) yields to no amount of fact - ever.

Terry Berg, Occidental, CA

Auberon Herbert - a god to big oil. He spoke in defense of freedom if one has conflated 'freedom' with 'license'. That's the charm of 'laissez-faire' - it erases the distinction between the two ideas.

Terry Berg, Occidental, CA

E. A. - you stepped on Pat Robertson's 'main line' of offense for his 'mass' movement this morning. Hide the matches.

Terry Berg, Occidental, CA

Show me an '-ism' and I'll show you a mob - there are no exceptions. Too often, what's mistaken for debate, is simply members of one mob shouting insults across the street at members of another mob with both mobs lusting for the smell of blood.

Terry Berg, Occidental, CA

This mindless belch is one more piece of evidence that Herbert was a bumptious twit. "in God's Word he has laid down a Representative republic for all civil governments to abide by to provide the best sort of government in a fallen world" - ra-ra-raaaight.

Terry Berg, Occidental, CA

Ah, E., how 'NICE' of you to echo my reflection - LOL.

Terry Berg, Occidental, CA

Madison was perfect for his time as Winston Churchill was for his. There is some question whether Churchill would have been as ideal after WWII as he was during the conflict. Likewise with Madison. Situations change.

Terry Berg, Occidental, CA

David, Just how many 'Red Chinese' vote in the US? Or is it that being 'Chinese' makes one 'Red'?
I'd also be curious as to the names of these 'socialist parties' you keep referring to, and the names of these 54 US congressional representatives registered in these socialist parties. I do hope that you actually know the answer and can supply it to everyone. We are uninformed. Inform us.

Terry Berg, Occidental, CA

Madison was indeed a blessing in the formation of this nation's constitution and the nation in general. He was also, as everyone was at the time, a product of the tribulations of the Colonies as well as the mores of the age - and - he was rich by the standards of his day.
"... his (Madison's) parents Colonel James Madison, Sr. and Eleanor Rose "Nellie" Conway were the prosperous owners of the tobacco plantation in Orange County, Virginia, where Madison spent most of his childhood years. Madison's plantation life was made possible by his paternal great-great-grandfather, James Madison, who utilized Virginia's headright system to import a significant number of indentured servants, thereby allowing him to accumulate a large tract of land." -

In his last act before leaving office, Madison vetoed a bill for "internal improvements," including roads, bridges, and canals:
"Having considered the bill...I am constrained by the insuperable difficulty I feel in reconciling this bill with the Constitution of the United States...The legislative powers vested in Congress are specified...in the...Constitution, and it does not appear that the power proposed to be exercised by the bill is among the enumerated powers..."
Madison would support internal improvement schemes only through constitutional amendment; but he urged a variety of measures that he felt were "best executed under the national authority," including federal support for roads and canals that would "bind more closely together the various parts of our extended confederacy." - Wikipedia

In Madison's view, no federal funds ought to be allocated to anything except by amendment to the Constitution. Were that philosophy to have been followed during Hitler's reign, WWII might easily have resulted in the defeat of the US by Hitler's ultimate designs. We, after all, were not under attack - yet - when we entered WWII in support of the 'Allies'.

There was a bit of aristocracy in Madison considering his position was made possible by the hard work and labor of indentured servants and slaves. That's really making good by one's own hard work! The fact is, Madison really was diligent - in his own calling. He just would never have been in a position to do what he did, had he not been privileged (on the backs of others).

Terry Berg, Occidental, CA

Joe, - so·cial·ism n. 1.a. A social system in which the means of producing and distributing goods are owned collectively and political power is exercised by the whole community. - AHD
- refugees?
I guess. You've evidently made a connection there.

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