Monday, May 24, 2010

Dealing with problems in a free society- Part 2

Dealing with problems in a free society- Part 2

Here is Part 2 of the discussion prefaced by the question I related in my previous column:

Please explain to me how Anarchism will deal with all types of violence and not
just “physical immediate violence”.

I can think of several instances when it
would be deemed appropiate (sic) to use force to stop some of the following
types of behavior.

And we move on to the next issue :

Ethnic violence, when people are expelled from their lands or subject to
discrimination because their ethnic group is considered threatening or inferior.

This falls under theft of property when people’s lands/homes are taken by force. They have the right to defend themselves and their property. As for discrimination- it isn’t nice, but everyone still has the basic human right to choose who to associate with and or do business with. In the long run it will economically harm the bigot to discriminate over stupid skin-deep things. The “pariahs” have economic needs and I will gladly trade with anyone who is not a thug. I will profit from the stupidity of the bigot. Only when such discrimination is made “the law” is it capable of doing much harm. Otherwise it is just jerks being jerks.

Gender violence, when the dignity and rights of women are violated, when they
are paid less for the same work, sexually harassed, denied educational
opportunities, or viewed as inferior to or of lesser status than men.

Once again, unless it is made “law” this wouldn’t hold up long. Stupid people can shoot themselves in the foot if they want to. Me, I’ll want to hire the best people and pay them what it takes to keep them, and treat them with the respect they deserve so they won’t go to a competitor (or become a competitor). Ignorant people can hold any views of any others person’s relative worth they want, but they had better not show it if they want to succeed.

Violence against children, when they are forced into labour, often in subhuman
conditions, or subjected to physical abuse at home or school, or to sexual abuse
by paedophiles and sex tourists.

In a free society there would probably be people who would make it their mission to find these kids and rescue them. And there would be no “law” to punish them for freeing individuals (“children”) from slavery. Since age-discrimination is as stupid as other kinds, the kids would also be defending themselves from abuse. Slavery and other abuse is a violation of anyone’s rights, and would be justification for defensive violence. These things happen even now, under the “protection of government”. They won’t go away in a free society, but the risks if caught would be much worse.

Violence to the unborn in abortion, particularly in the widespread modern
practices of female foeticide and infanticide.

Liberty may not always be pretty. It may not always support your particular view. Abortion is a touchy subject, too deep for this comment. I have written about my views a few times, and here is one such column: link

I do tend to think that if you allow people to give away unwanted children, and allow them to accept payment for them, there would be a lot fewer infanticides for any reason. That may seem crass, but do you deny it would save babies’ lives? So many people desperately want children, while others so desperately DON’T. Let them find one another without getting busybodies involved.

State violence of oppressive and discriminatory laws, ruthless or biased law
enforcement, unrestricted police practices, summary arrests, long-delayed
trials, the undue use of armed forces to deal with internal disturbances, the
suppression of right to dissent and freedom of association, excessive
militarisation, and the most pervasive of all, corruption in public life.

No more “State”; no more of these problems.

Violence to one’s self-image and self-respect, which makes individuals and
social groups feel themselves inferior, backward, and “dispensable. ”

This is just hurting feelings. It isn’t nice, but it happens to everyone. It has happened to me, and I survived. It is NOT “violence”, as no physical force is involved. Grow up and deal with it like an adult, or strike back and let an arbitrator decide if you were justified in your actions. I would not likely decide in your favor, though.

Violence against the homeland, in uprooting and evicting a people from their
lands and homes on the pretext of “progress” or the “common good.”

Once again, strictly a government-based problem. “Evicting” is just theft of land unless you have a government backing you up.

Ecological violence, when nature and its resources are greedily exploited for
personal profit, without concern for future generations, for contemporaries
whose survival depends on a careful husbanding of the earth’s resources, or for
the beauty and variety of Creation.

The tragedy of the commons. People care for that which they own. Let every square inch have a real owner, and let every owner be responsible for any harm he causes to anyone else’s property. You are free to destroy your own property, but if any of your damage leaves your land- by air, groundwater, river, or on the back of trained turtles- you are personally responsible for restitution to all damaged parties. No “corporation” to hide behind; no “limits” capping your liability.

And there you have it.

An Albuquerque man called police when he was told by a friend his "door stop" was a Civil War-era cannonball. He was afraid it could explode. I don't know about you, but this seems like an overreaction. Plus, I'm sure there are more knowledgeable people out there- people who wouldn't shut down and panic the neighborhood to examine a relic that has sat around without suddenly exploding for over 150 years. I'm just glad he didn't get arrested or Tasered for possessing a "weppina mass destruxun".

Dealing with problems in a free society- Part 1

Dealing with problems in a free society- Part 1

I recently answered some questions from someone who wanted to know how an anarchistic society would deal with types of violence other than a direct physical attack. Here is a breakdown of his questions and my responses to them (with extra links added).

Please explain to me how Anarchism will deal with all types of violence and
just “physical immediate violence”.

I can think of several instances when it would be deemed appropiate
(sic) to use force to stop some of the following types of

Social violence, in which an individual or group is ostracized, demeaned,
and made the object of discrimination.

That isn’t nice behavior IF the target is innocent of wrongdoing, but it isn’t “violence”. Without a political system to use against the targets, it would probably fail. However, “shunning” is an appropriate way of dealing with people who are known to be bad people (DEA goons, or BATFE thugs) without using actual violence against them.

Cultural violence, where a people’s values and traditions are invaded, degraded,
or destroyed by other groups.

How can someone else invade, degrade, or destroy your values or traditions? That doesn’t even make sense to me. I have many values that are ridiculed by “society at large”, yet they are not harmed by that ridicule in any substantive way. I still value them just as much, possibly more. If your culture can’t hold up against a little bit of opposition or exposure, it probably isn’t worth much to begin with.

Religious violence, when one is denied religious freedom and made to suffer for
one’s beliefs, and people are looked down upon or discriminated against in law
because of their faith.

Law” is the problem. Don’t establish it to begin with and it can’t be used to dictate or forbid religious beliefs and practices. I have warned people for years that any government strong enough to promote your religion is also strong enough to prohibit it. I am an atheist, and am pretty hard on religious beliefs, however I would NEVER demand anyone stop following their religion because it offends me. Only if it (or its followers) cause(s) me actual harm will I defend myself. I will also stand up for your right to follow whatever religion your conscience embraces in the face of anyone who tries to violate that basic human right. Now, I may ridicule some beliefs. My beliefs can stand up to it, so should your religion. If it can’t, then it has failed the test.

Economic violence, where people are denied, because of caste or social group,
opportunities granted to others, given inadequate pay, and forced to take only
the lowliest, most menial work.

Removal of corporatism and political favors, along with red tape and regulations designed to limit competition, will make this problem evaporate. If people are being used and taken advantage of, remove the “legal” barriers to them starting their own business. Let them brew beer in their living room, or braid hair in their back yard. Let them manufacture machine guns in their garage. Government is the main speedbump that the poor can’t get over or around. Remove it.

Political violence, where persons are dismissed from their positions, arrested,
tortured, and deprived of their rights because of their political beliefs.

This is tied so directly to government that I don’t think a free society would even understand what you mean. If you are fired due to your political beliefs, and you had a contract saying this was not permitted, then the breaker of the contract would owe restitution. Otherwise, you and your employer have a right of association, and can (in a free society) choose who to associate with, or not, for ANY reason- or for none at all. “Arrested” is just government-sponsored kidnapping. Torture is an initiation of force, and torturers are subject to self-defensive violence just like any other attacker. The same goes for “denial of rights”. If someone tries to violate your rights you are justified in stopping them, using whatever amount of force it takes to make them stop. It seems funny to me that all these examples are rampant under ALL governments on earth, yet you use them to refute the idea of a free society. Hmmm.

Tune in next time for Part 2.

I often wonder about the details that are left out of news stories. Such as this one about an Albuquerque man who ran over an off-duty LEO's foot, and is now facing criminal charges. Why were they struggling? What is an off-duty cop doing with a Taser and handcuffs? Why isn't the LEO named in the report? It's almost like they think the APD has somethng to hide.