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Author Topic: Drugs in the FSP  (Read 44975 times)

ethanpooley

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Re:Drugs in the FSP
« Reply #150 on: March 10, 2004, 11:30:37 am »

penguinsscareme, I agree that the suggestion to allow public drug use does not, at first, belong on a campgain poster. But while I'm happy to not advertise it, I wouldn't want to hide it either. As I stated in my post, I believe that what libertarianism has to offer is principled government. I'm not a libertarian because I want public orgies; I don't want public orgies. I'm a libertarian because of what I do what - principled government - whether it means public orgies or no.

If, when pushed on the topic ("Oh yeah, well.... would you allow public orgies then!?"), I deny it, then to me it seems that I become just another random politician trying to stump for my particular wishlist; trying to offer the voter just what they want, and nothing they don't. But liberty isn't like that, and liberty is what I am trying to offer them. I would rather use it as an opportunity to teach them about libertarianism, and to prove to them that I really am willing to 'walk the walk' of the principles I espouse.

In other words, I am of the camp that thinks that a 'limited libertarian' approach to politics is doomed. Some people think that we are optimists and head-in-the-clouds idealists, because all we talk about is principle and philosophy. But I believe it's because we are pessimists that we do so; we believe that an (apparently) unprincipled approach is a losing battle. Someone on this board has a sig (a Tom Jefferson quote) that says "The ground of liberty will be gained in inches." I am way too pessimistic about liberty to believe that. That is how liberty is lost, not how it's gained! It is gained, historically, via migration and revolution, in massive, bloody chunks. It is lost in inches shortly thereafter. I think we can only succeed by selling principled libertarianism; by making people think "It makes more sense the more I think about it, and since they are so principled I trust them not to change once they are in office."

Oh yeah, and don't fear the penguin! Not the Linux penguin, anyway. Linux is good for you...
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BillG

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Re:Drugs in the FSP
« Reply #151 on: March 10, 2004, 12:25:42 pm »

Quote
If we intended from the start to go toe to toe on stuff we have no chance of winning, we should have picked based on weather.  Then we could all chase futility in Hawaii instead of New Hampshire.  At least we'd be warm.

I can pretty much guarantee there will be no orgies on the NH statehouse lawn in Concord between December 1st and March 1st...

The same can not be said for Hawaii...

The reason why was depicted in a Seinfeld episode when George went swimming in the ocean and then was publically humiliated when seen without his clothes on...

his defense: "shrinkage"

so the macho "flash" depicted on these boards will be tamed by mother nature herself...
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penguinsscareme

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Re:Drugs in the FSP
« Reply #152 on: March 10, 2004, 05:34:52 pm »

Taco, you're not moving from one police state to another.  I think that's overstating the case just a bit.  I think the state will run better and be more tolerant of porcupines if the prostitution, orgies and drugs were kept indoors, or at least on private property, such as at Ozzfest.  That doesn't make me a jackbooted gestapo.

You speak your position very well, O Furry One.  I appreciate your vision and your idealism.  That's fine to have as a philosophy in the abstract.  But in the real world, there is no such thing as a pure philosophy or a perfect system.  You point out very presciently that liberty is not neat and clean, and there are some consequences that we cannot guarantee against.  But I have offered the best alternative I can think of, which is to allow people to freely engage in whatever sort of behavior they wish (so long as they don't hurt anyone) in privacy.
Why is that not good enough?  Why must we push for the last taboo?  I'm not saying people shouldn't be allowed to protest publicly, or stand on a soapbox and talk about how wonderful it is to have orgies.  But when we really get whipped into a froth over the extreme logical ends of our ideals, it just makes it sound like we're going to turn the Free State into a place where no one -- not myself, anyway -- would want to live.
No one in Amsterdam complains about not having enough freedom to smoke pot, no one in Vegas complains about not having enough freedom to engage in whatever sexual activity.

My point is that not every porcupine feels the way you do.  I am not even a libertarian.  I have causes of my own that I feel passionately about, and I have started both a liaison page and a local group because of them.  If you feel passionately enough about the right to have public drug use and orgies, then start a liaison.  If not, then please direct your energies in a more productive fashion.  The content on this thread is only divisive.  There is no positive result from this.  I'm not saying you should back away from what you believe in.  But you've also got to acknowledge the reality outside.  The founding fathers at the Constitutional Convention were wise enough to be happy with getting most of what they wanted and did not push and push until they created an impasse.  An impasse is what we seem to have here.  I have gone as far as I can go.
This forum is where people from outside -- people who are not as frothy around the mouth as we can sometimes be -- come to assess our merits.  We represent ourselves much better if we stress the points where we are united than if we stress our differences.
There's a time and place for this debate.  I'm asking you, for what I believe to be the best interest of the fsp, can you wait until after we reach our goal to start stumping for orgies?
Answer honestly if asked; but this has gone way beyond that.  Now we come across not as tacit supporters, but as rabid freaks.
Gotta go.
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Reaper

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Re:Drugs in the FSP
« Reply #153 on: March 10, 2004, 05:50:05 pm »

There is no right to not be offended by anything you see or hear in public or on property which you do not own.

I'm not going to advocate making up campaign posters "Support the FSP for huge public orgies!", but if asked neither will I lie and make up non existent rights to placate the morality police amongst us or the population at large.

As Zack once said:

/sacrasm on

"NEWS FLASH!!! LIBERTARIAN HAS UNPOPULAR IDEAS!!!!"
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thrivetacobell

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Re:Drugs in the FSP
« Reply #154 on: March 10, 2004, 06:08:29 pm »

I hear you Penguinsscareme, yes it was a bit of an overstatement. I deleted the post as having reread it, it was more of an emotional response to the idea of police out on the roads looking for not only drunk drivers but also anyone who might have been smoking pot or using other substances... An escalation of what things currently are, under the awareness of New Hampshire taking the law rather seriously.

Anyhow, I gots no argument with you in regards of individuals choosing to consume such things to show some discretion... Its part of Individual Responsibility.

And to agree with you again (I'm not kissing up, I swear!), the forum is not the place to espouse extremist views. To each his own, but we have a few problems which display a bit more urgency. Lets put first things first, and make the FSP a success!
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penguinsscareme

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Re:Drugs in the FSP
« Reply #155 on: March 10, 2004, 09:29:33 pm »

Thanks, Taco, at least I feel like I got across to somebody.
I have seen too many good people who are open and receptive to our ideas turned away because they only agreed with us on 90% of the issues.  If someone is on board for most of the trip but isn't ready or willing to go the last mile where we ask for completely transparent national borders, no professional military, or public orgies and drug use, I say welcome them with open arms.  If it's an issue you feel particularly strongly about, then quietly acknowledge that they are not ready to hear it from you, and let them come to you when the time is right for them.  I have had to learn this myself because of my "extreme" views on international trade.

Honestly, if we the fsp accomplish half of our agenda in our lifetimes, we will have been a success.  If we achieve two thirds, we will have made history.  If we make three quarters, we will have a country stronger and better than we dreamed.  If we dare to dream that we could actually accomplish 90% of what we set out to do, our pictures will be on money someday.  And if we succeed in ninety-five percent of our goals, then maybe, just maybe, whether or not to allow public orgies might become a legitimate issue.  Now that would be a nice problem to have.

Andrew
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ethanpooley

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Re:Drugs in the FSP
« Reply #156 on: March 10, 2004, 10:08:22 pm »

On the forgoing:

Well I certainly agree with your major points:

1. Not all porcupines think like I do.
2. We had best find and focus on our points of agreement.
3. Full-on libertarianism will, if nothing else, invite more opposition than something less radical.

That said, while a 'limited libertarianism' government would be an improvement on the current one, it doesn't solve the fundamental problem that I want to solve in the Free State. Even if the Free State government leaves me free to do whatever I in fact desire to do, I still won't feel that I have accomplished much (beyond a better life for myself) unless it does so out of principle. In other words, getting a bunch of libertarians in one place so that we are enough of a majority to vote our own freedoms is not enough for me, perhaps not even enough to move for. I am moving primarily from the hope that we can go beyond that, to a government under which I don't have to agree with the majority in order to be free.

As for whether that is realistic or not... I have very little hope for it. I just know that if it were to happen, it would begin with something like the FSP. So here I be.


On "Public Property":

Now this is a truly interesting topic to me. We have been talking about what should be allowed on public property; I'm not sure we didn't jump the gun with that discussion. What is public property? In what sense is it 'public'? What repercussions does that have for activities on such property? Are there different kinds/levels/etc of public property?

I can think of at least two senses of the term, each of which would have a different set of reasonable libertarian repercussions: land owned by no one, and land owned by a community. I'll call the first public property, and the second community property.

Public property would be public in the 'public domain' sense. It isn't owned by anyone, it just happens to be within the borders of a state of the Union. I'm not sure what examples of this there are, but BLM land would be pretty close. I'm sure our governments (state/fed) claim to own this land, at least in this day and age. But ideally they shouldn't be able to own in the same sense that a citizen could, at least not without purchasing it (from whom though?) or improving it in some way. In any case, on such land I would definitely argue that one should be able to do whatever one could do on private property. From an activities perspective, anyway. I'm not trying to draw environmental conclusions here or anything.

Community property, on the other hand, is held in common by a group of people, or by an entity that represents a group of people. It is public in the 'community enjoyment' sense. This is probably how townships view their ownership of city property. On that model I could see myself being convinced that the majority could justly specify 'unacceptable' activities. They are 'part owners', after all. On the other hand, I expect there are arguments to the effect that civil government should do no such thing, and that only a private group of citizens should be allowed to own and regulate land in such a fashion. I don't have an opinion on that yet, because I haven't thought about it in those terms much.

Those were just two examples. I wouldn't be surprised if it turned out that 'public property' picks out several, distinct types of property, each with its own set of defensible restrictions.
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wes237

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Re:Drugs in the FSP
« Reply #157 on: March 10, 2004, 10:25:22 pm »

Thank you furball4, You are pretty much spot-on.

The majority will decide what is allowable on community/public property. The individule will do what they want on their own private property.

All this other talk is silly adolescent BS. So many seem to forget that their freedom ends where my nose begins. But they will be reminded when they insist on sticking their personal business in my face and especially in my kid's face. And when they get reminded, they will never forget the lesson.
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penguinsscareme

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Re:Drugs in the FSP
« Reply #158 on: March 10, 2004, 10:43:57 pm »

...


You really are a furball, aren't you?

I guess I refer to community property, and maybe this makes me a communist, I don't know, but I believe that there is a place for that, even in the Free State.

Being free without agreeing with the majority is pretty much possible now.  Short of Stalinism, almost every form of government tolerates independents to one extent or another.  I may or may not have been known on occasion to ride without a helmet.  I may be related to people who may or may not have put additions on their homes without consulting the zoning boards of their respective towns.  I may vote republican or libertarian even though I work within a monolithically democrat organization.  As a little boy, I learned from watching the diametrically different examples given by my older siblings that people who pretty much just mind their own business can get away with a lot.
This is why I'm such fan of jury nullification.  Hell with what the law or the government says we have to do.  If you're on a jury to hear a case of a person who broke a law, say it was a law that is either inherently unjust or grossly misapplied, then you can just refuse to convict, even if the commission of the crime has been proven!  In my opinion, that is the best means by which to judge both the people and the law.  Say a guy gets arrested and tried for public nudity (stipulating that such a law hasn't been abolished yet).  Well, was he ducking into an alley to take a leak because his bladder is overactive, or was he pulling out his wiener to flash a couple twelve-year olds?  The power is in the hands of the jury.  Not the judge, not the prosecutor, but the private citizen.
Check out this link, you might enjoy it.
http://www.geocities.com/chrisforliberty/fija.html
« Last Edit: March 10, 2004, 10:53:48 pm by penguinsscareme »
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Morpheus

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Re:Drugs in the FSP
« Reply #159 on: March 10, 2004, 11:04:24 pm »

Quote
And to agree with you again (I'm not kissing up, I swear!), the forum is not the place to espouse extremist views.


Yes, it is. We must know where we all stand, or we will accomplish nothing.

Expressing support for the freedom of people to conduct public orgies is different entirely from suggesting that we campaign on that issue, or other such extreme issues.

I may be a militant.. but I am also a pragmatist.
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Morpheus

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Re:Drugs in the FSP
« Reply #160 on: March 10, 2004, 11:24:38 pm »

Quote
Community property, on the other hand, is held in common by a group of people, or by an entity that represents a group of people. It is public in the 'community enjoyment' sense. This is probably how townships view their ownership of city property. On that model I could see myself being convinced that the majority could justly specify 'unacceptable' activities. They are 'part owners', after all. On the other hand, I expect there are arguments to the effect that civil government should do no such thing, and that only a private group of citizens should be allowed to own and regulate land in such a fashion. I don't have an opinion on that yet, because I haven't thought about it in those terms much.

If this comes in a form similiar to that of a Gated Community, then fine. If not, and I have to pay taxes for it.. there is going to be a problem.
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boxcar

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Re:Drugs in the FSP
« Reply #161 on: March 10, 2004, 11:46:40 pm »

Furball summed up the public/private sphere well. I agree with Wes, well put. And Morpheus has a point, though I tend to think the Libertarian Party is not taken seriously by most people because of extreme positions built entirely on philosphy. But at least Morpheus (and I have read many of his other posts elsewhere) keeps the debate lively by offering up some challenging questions.

Statists generally use the extreme positions of the (Big L) Libertarian Party against it. That's what statists do - they use fear to justify laws and regulations. They also use most sheeple's tendencies to want to tell other people what they should be doing while not wanting to be told what to do themselves. I've seen it a hundred times while covering municipal meetings. A township proposes zoning and 300 people show up to stop it. A year later (this is a true example), a methadone clinic moves into the township and 300 people (at least 75 percent of the same people) show up to demand from the government why they weren't informed and what can be done to stop it. In short, sheeple like to fear something different. We, libertarians (small L) are different.

Trimming back the statist mentality that is rampant in these United States will take more than clever slogans and arm-chair philosophy, it will take convincing the sheeple that we are not the enemy.

It's been said that the greatest trick the devil ever played was convincing the world he didn't exist....and we are the devil, according to the statists.

Trimming back the government is easier when the sheeple don't feel threatened. It's like a big game of poker, so why show all the cards?

I'll be the first to blaze up in a free state, but I'm also aware my actions may not be appropriate in public - legal or not. It's more of a concern for civility and respect than my rights. At home, now that's another matter.
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penguinsscareme

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Re:Drugs in the FSP
« Reply #162 on: March 11, 2004, 05:57:11 am »

Quote
And to agree with you again (I'm not kissing up, I swear!), the forum is not the place to espouse extremist views.


Yes, it is. We must know where we all stand, or we will accomplish nothing.

Expressing support for the freedom of people to conduct public orgies is different entirely from suggesting that we campaign on that issue, or other such extreme issues.

I may be a militant.. but I am also a pragmatist.

That's a big steaming load of crap.  We can accomplish tons without litmus testing each other on the issue of public orgies or drug use.  Of a thousand times greater importance is the right to have these things privately -- again I make reference to Amsterdam and Vegas, two successful models, rather than the last age of the Roman Empire, an unsuccessful model.
Endorsing the issue IS campaigning the issue when we drag it out and flog it mercilessly on the Prospective Members forum.
Again, this is so far from being an issue that it's a fool's argument in the first place.
Now, having said that, I confess that I do not agree with you on the issue of public orgies.  I personally am just not ready to support that.  More importantly, as I have tried to stress, the people of New Hampshire, people we hope will work with us, will not support the issue.
So now can we move on?  You insist that you must know where your brethren stand on such an issue or we can accomplish nothing together.  So now you know.  Now can we get with the business of accomplishing the work of the fsp together?  Is my stodginess such an insurmountable obstacle to our partnership, or do you think maybe we have other, more important areas where we agree and can move forward?
« Last Edit: March 11, 2004, 07:52:01 am by penguinsscareme »
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penguinsscareme

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Re:Drugs in the FSP
« Reply #163 on: March 11, 2004, 07:44:04 am »

We're on the same page, Boxcar.
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Re:Drugs in the FSP
« Reply #164 on: March 11, 2004, 10:06:31 am »

A person's decision to do stupid things like drugs is his own business until he hurts someone else.  I'll go a step further and say until he endangers someone else.  And where exactly do we draw that line?  That's one of those things we have to leave to discretion.  It's too fuzzy to nail down.  I'm not waffling, either, so don't get p.o.'ed.  Probable cause is a fuzzy line, the founders made it that way on purpose.  It's okay to leave some things to common sense and discretion.  We don't have to nail down every minute detail.
Public orgies are just one of those things that is definitely over the line, even though the line is fuzzy.  It's not healthy for me to see an orgy.  It's not healthy for my daughter to see an orgy.  If nothing else, it's disturbing the peace!
I expect to be able to conduct my public business without having to dodge orgies or people dealing and shooting heroin.  If there's a well-soundproofed private bordello or drug den between me and my destination, I couldn't care less.  I draw the line around there somewhere.

See, this is what makes me nervous.  Sometimes it starts to sound like we're not only decriminalizing vice, but facilitating it.
Say what you want, but bear in mind that there are always potential members reading.  You represent us all when you post on this forum.  You can be right, but better to be right and smart than right and stupid.

I tried to bite my tongue, but it looks like this thread is becoming a magnet for FSP members who do not intend to honor the statement of intent. Once there, I will exert the fullest practical effort toward the creation of a society in which the maximum role of civil government is the protection of life, liberty, and property.

Sex or nudity on public property in no way infringes on your rights to life, liberty, or property. If we use the government's monopoly on force to impose our own views of social norms on other people, we cannot in fairness expect them not to use the government to impose their views on us.

Quote
But I have offered the best alternative I can think of, which is to allow people to freely engage in whatever sort of behavior they wish (so long as they don't hurt anyone) in privacy.
Why is that not good enough?  Why must we push for the last taboo?  I'm not saying people shouldn't be allowed to protest publicly, or stand on a soapbox and talk about how wonderful it is to have orgies.
This sums up the problem nicely--everyone wants to decide what other people should and shouldn't be allowed to do. That is the definition of authoritarianism, whether it's on public or private property.

Quote
We can accomplish tons without litmus testing each other on the issue of public orgies or drug use.  Of a thousand times greater importance is the right to have these things privately . . .
How about free political speech? Would you say it's way more important to have this right in private than in public? Who's going to be the master arbiter of what rights we should have in private and what we should have in public?

wes237:
Quote
All this other talk is silly adolescent BS. So many seem to forget that their freedom ends where my nose begins. But they will be reminded when they insist on sticking their personal business in my face and especially in my kid's face. And when they get reminded, they will never forget the lesson.
Next time you're on a sidewalk with your kid, and someone says a bad word, or a woman takes her shirt off, are you saying you're going to attack them? It's bad enough to have the government enforce a code of social conduct, let alone have some people attack other people who do offensive things.


This thread was one of the first big libertarian discussions I got into after discovering the FSP. It was a theoretical discussion. As has been repeated many times, supporting someone's right to do something is not an endorsement of his or her behavior. This is very similar to Bastiat's observation in "A Confusion of Terms" from The Law:

Socialism, like the ancient ideas from which it springs, confuses the distinction between government and society. As a result of this, every time we object to a thing being done by government, the socialists conclude that we object to its being done at all.

We disapprove of state education. Then the socialists say that we are opposed to any education. We object to a state religion. Then the socialists say that we want no religion at all. We object to a state-enforced equality. Then they say that we are against equality. And so on, and so on. It is as if the socialists were to accuse us of not wanting persons to eat because we do not want the state to raise grain.


The contrary argument comes from our enemies, who believe that if the government allows something, that's the same as the government endorsing it. Yet at the same time, they're happy to have the government endorse just about anything, as long as they agree with it. They're gleeful to get the government to take money by force from other people and use it for their own ends (e.g. paying the police to arrest naked people).

You couldn't let this discussion drop as merely a theoretical discussion--not an endorsement of public sex acts, and not a policy plan for New Hampshire. You call us stupid for having a principled view of liberty, and for acknowledging it with honesty. You insist that you should be able to impose your view of decency on other people. Get a grip on yourself. We are not pursuing the end of civilization. We are pursuing liberty.
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