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Author Topic: Can geo-libertarianism even be called libertarianism?  (Read 73517 times)

<Patrick>

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Can geo-libertarianism even be called libertarianism?
« on: December 03, 2003, 07:08:35 pm »

(The Initiation of) Force

What do you mean by the initiation of force?

In a political context, freedom has only one specific meaning -- freedom from the initiation of force by other men. By initiation of force I mean those who start the use of force to achieve their ends, i.e., a bank robber. Only the initiation of force against a man can stop his mind, thus rendering it useless as a means of survival. Only by the initiation of force can a man be prevented from speaking, or robbed of his possessions, or murdered. Only through the initiation of force can a man's rights be violated.

Can men use force in self defense?

To use force in retaliation -- in self defense against those who initiate it -- is not a moral option, but a moral requirement. A moral man has nothing to gain when a man tries to kill him, but he has much to lose if he does not defend himself. For this reason it is right, just, and proper to use force in retaliation and self-defense. The use of force, in and of itself, is not evil -- but to initiate (start) force is. Contrary to the vile doctrines of the pacifists, force used in self-defense is a species of the good.

Any man (or group of men) who initiates force against others is a dictator -- a monster -- and should be treated as such, to the extent he initiates force.

http://www.capitalism.org/faq/force.htm

"Whatever may be open to disagreement...so long as men desire to live together, no man may INITIATE--do you hear me? no man may START-- the use of physical force against others" --Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged

Geo-lib violates this principle by forcing those who own land--with the barrel of a gun--to pay a property tax. Because of this, it cannot be called libertarian.

Any geo-libs care to defend their views?


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« Last Edit: December 04, 2003, 11:18:44 am by Justin »
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"I came here to say that I do not recognize anyone’s right to one minute of my life.  Nor to any part of my energy.  Nor to any achievement of mine… I wished to come here and say that I am a man who does not exist for others."
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TMA68

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Re:Can geo-libertarianism even be called libertarianism?
« Reply #1 on: December 04, 2003, 02:24:14 am »

Only through the initiation of force can a man's rights be violated.

On what core principle are those "rights" based? All the libertarian literature I've read indicates they are based on the principle of self-ownership. It is with this principle in mind that most libertarians I know of maintain that all individuals have a right to life, and hence a right to (in the words of the LP Platform) "live in whatever manner they choose, so long as they do not forcibly interfere with the equal[/b] right of others to live in whatever manner they choose." [Emphasis mine]

Though they rarely admit to this openly, so-called "libertarians" who reject geolibertarianism honestly believe that there is no contradiction between (1) the notion that everyone has an equal right to "be," and (2) the notion that everyone does not have an equal right to be -- "somewhere." What makes this such a laughable contradiction is the fact that the very act of being alive isn't possible in the first place without access to land. You literally can't have one without the other. Thus, to assert that those without land-titles have no right to land is to assert that an entire subset of the human population has no right to life itself.

Do you not even understand why asserting that millions of people have no right to life is a rejection of self-ownership, and thus of libertarianism itself? If not, then it is clear that we cannot even agree on first premises, and that debating the issue further would thus be a waste of time.
 
http://geolib.com/essays/sullivan.dan/royallib.html

Todd Altman



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demarkus

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Re:Can geo-libertarianism even be called libertarianism?
« Reply #2 on: December 04, 2003, 05:34:03 am »

Actually you are incorrect about libertarianism being based on the principle of self-ownership.

Libertarianism is based on the understanding that every human being has freedom of choice. However, no one has unlimited freedom of choice. You may be able to influence the decisions others make, but you can't choose for them. You may be able to change how natural phenomena affects you, but you can't choose the universal rules that cause them. Geo-liberalism based on the principle of evasion. Evasion of reality in favor of fairness.

Do you not even understand why asserting that millions of people have, not only a right to determine the quality of their own life, but also to limit the quality of others is a rejection of the idea of natural law?


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« Last Edit: December 05, 2003, 10:43:13 am by Justin »
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TMA68

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Re:Can geo-libertarianism even be called libertarianism?
« Reply #3 on: December 04, 2003, 12:01:33 pm »

Actually you are incorrect about libertarianism being based on the principle of self-ownership.

Then so is practically every libertarian author who has ever written on the subject:

"Though the earth, and all inferior creatures be common to all men, yet every man has a property in his own person. This nobody has any right to but himself." -- John Locke, 2nd Treatise of Government, Ch. 5

"The property rights that each citizen has in himself are the foundation of a free society." -- James Bovard, Freedom In Chains, p. 86

"Libertarianism begins with self ownership." -- David Bergland, Libertarianism In One Lesson, p. 35

"The libertarian therefore rejects these alternatives and concludes by adopting as his primary axiom the universal right of self-ownership, a right held by everyone by virtue of being a human being." [Emphasis mine] -- Murray Rothbard, For a New Liberty, pp. 29-30

"There is only one fundamental right (all others are its consequences or corollaries): a man's right to his own life. Life is a process of self-sustaining and self-generated action; the right to life means the right to engage in self-sustaining and self-generated action--which means: the freedom to take all the actions required by the nature of a rational being for the support, the furtherance, the fulfillment and the enjoyment of his own life…Since man has to sustain his life by his own effort, the man who has no right to the product of his effort has no means to sustain his life." -- Ayn Rand, Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal, pp. 321-2

"In the libertarian view, we have an infinite number of rights contained in one natural right. That one fundamental human right is the right to live your life as you choose so long as you don't infringe on the equal[/b] rights of others." [Emphasis mine] -- David Boaz, Libertarianism: A Primer, p. 59

"Because every person owns himself, his body and his mind, he has the right to life....The right to life means that each person has the right to take action in the furtherance of his life and flourishing, not to force others to serve his needs." -- Ibid., p. 64

"The ownership of property is a necessary implication of self-ownership because all human action involves property. How else could happiness be pursued? If nothing else, we need a place to stand. We need the right to use land and other property to produce new goods and services." [Emphasis mine] -- Ibid., p. 65

While none of the above authors (with the possible exception of Locke) are geolibertarian, it is still nevertheless true that all of them agree with each other (as well as with me) on self-ownership being the starting point of libertarianism, while disagreeing with you. Thus, perhaps it is you who are who are "incorrect" about it not being the starting point.

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Libertarianism is based on the understanding that every human being has freedom of choice.

One cannot have a right to "choose" without first having a right to oneself. As David Bergland aptly says above, libertarianism begins with self-ownership. By insisting otherwise, you are putting yourself at odds not just with me, but with virtually every libertarian author I know of. Thus, as I said in my last post, if we can't even agree on this all-important first premise, then it is pointless to debate the issue further.

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Geo-liberalism based on the principle of evasion.

It is the height of hypocrisy for you to say this, since you yourself completely evaded the question that concluded my previous post.

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Do you not even understand why asserting that millions of people have, not only a right to determine the quality of their own life, but also to limit the quality of others is a rejection of the idea of natural law?

Yes. I also understand that, in asking this question, you are merely describing your own belief system, since it is you, not I, who maintains that the earth is the exclusive property of those who happen to have land-titles, and that titleholders thus have the right to "limit" everyone else from exercising their faculties (since access to land is the universal precondition to exercising one's faculties), and thus from sustaining their very lives. To advocate such a ridiculous notion is to reject the very idea of "natural law" you claim to believe in.

http://geolib.com/sullivan.dan/commonrights.html

Todd Altman



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<Patrick>

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Re:Can geo-libertarianism even be called libertarianism?
« Reply #4 on: December 04, 2003, 03:24:30 pm »

Quote
If not, then it is clear that we cannot even agree on first premises, and that debating the issue further would thus be a waste of time.

Well, can't we try? Let's start by figuring out what we do agree on, and then continue the debate from there. Are you up to it?

Philosophically, I agree with you that self-ownership IS the fundemental premise of libertarianism. However, my position is that--in a political context--the only way it can be violated is by the initiation of force.

« Last Edit: December 04, 2003, 09:12:27 pm by New Intellectual »
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"I came here to say that I do not recognize anyone’s right to one minute of my life.  Nor to any part of my energy.  Nor to any achievement of mine… I wished to come here and say that I am a man who does not exist for others."
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<Patrick>

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Re:Can geo-libertarianism even be called libertarianism?
« Reply #5 on: December 04, 2003, 03:27:06 pm »

Quote
Do you not even understand why asserting that millions of people have no right to life is a rejection of self-ownership, and thus of libertarianism itself?

     Are you familiar with positive rights versus negative rights?

     A positive right is a right TO SOMETHING.

     A negative right is a right to be LEFT ALONE.



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"I came here to say that I do not recognize anyone’s right to one minute of my life.  Nor to any part of my energy.  Nor to any achievement of mine… I wished to come here and say that I am a man who does not exist for others."
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demarkus

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Re:Can geo-libertarianism even be called libertarianism?
« Reply #6 on: December 04, 2003, 11:16:06 pm »

Quote
Actually you are incorrect about libertarianism being based on the principle of self-ownership.

Excuse me. My mistake. Not a Freudian slip. I meant to say geo-libertarianism.

Todd, quoting scripture is fine if you are into that sort of thing, but have you actually read any of it? I didn't evade you question, I answered it (although the answer was misleading with the mistake.) Freedom of choice and self-ownership are two sides of the same coin. Neither is possible without the other.

Maybe I am just misunderstanding geo-libs, but it just seems plain odd to substitute an equal right to land for a collective right to rents.
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LeopardPM

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Re:Can geo-libertarianism even be called libertarianism?
« Reply #7 on: December 05, 2003, 04:56:40 am »

the Right to 'be' and the Right to 'be' somewhere are entirely different animals.

just because to live you must, by physical nature, occupy 3-D space does not entitle you to any particular space.  if this is the case, then it MUST be extended to all the other necessities required to live: air, food, water, etc... some could even extend it to the right to sunshine or human interaction because without these, a human would most likely become emotionally unstable or psychotic.

the Right to 'be' Somewhere fallacy can more easily be shown its true characteristics if you imagine that all land by divided up evenly so that each parcel can sustain the life of One human.  Upon each of these parcels One human lives.  What happens when the next human is born?  Does his Right to 'be' overrule the Rights of all the others - either this 'overpopulation' of one dies, or everyone dies because to divide up all the existing land to redistribute in equal sums to include this new human, would by definition provide less than the quantity necessary to sustain any human on their parcel.

There is no Right to 'be somewhere', or Right to Eat, or Breathe - we all have a variety of necessities and we MUST provide for them ourselves through work or charity.

Even the Geo-libs, er, excuse me, Georgists basic premise is flawed so clearly all other arguments that stem from it inherit this flaw.

Georgist thought REQUIRES governmental force to redistribute wealth... that in and of itself should put a red flag out to anyone slightly taken' by its socialist 'feel good' message that 'We all deserve to be alive and deserve to share in the spoils of work by others equally because we are alive'

just a passer-by,
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JRedwine

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Re:Can geo-libertarianism even be called libertarianism?
« Reply #8 on: December 05, 2003, 10:34:21 am »

On what core principle are those "rights" based? All the libertarian literature I've read indicates they are based on the principle of self-ownership. It is with this principle in mind that most libertarians I know of maintain that all individuals have a right to life, ...

Wrong.  You're confusing phrases.  Self ownership, and right to life, are two different things.

There is no such thing as "right to life" in this context.  In this, it's an empty political phrase.  It's a phrase taken from the anti-abortion movement, and it has meaning there, but that's not the subject here.

Whether a person lives at all, is circumstantial.  Need I mention there's a current medical theory that someday everybody is going to die? :)

There isn't any "right to life" in a general way.  It just isn't there.  It isn't reality.

You gonna sue God?

To talk about "right to life" in a general way is to play God.  Democrats play God.  Libertarians don't (or shouldn't.)

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« Last Edit: December 05, 2003, 10:42:58 am by Justin »
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BillG

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Re:Can geo-libertarianism even be called libertarianism?
« Reply #9 on: December 05, 2003, 11:27:51 am »

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There is no such thing as "right to life" in this context.  In this, it's an empty political phrase.  It's a phrase taken from the anti-abortion movement, and it has meaning there, but that's not the subject here.

From the FSP's FAQ:

"Anyone who can agree to the clause in the Statement of Intent which says that you should support the creation of a society in which the maximum role of civil government is the protection of citizens' rights to life, liberty, and property. In essence, this includes everyone who wants to cut the size and scope of government by about two-thirds or more. Put in a positive way, most FSP members support policies such as abolition of all income taxes, elimination of regulatory bureaucracies, repeal of most gun control laws, repeal of most drug prohibition laws, complete free trade, decentralization of government, and widescale privatization. People of this disposition may go by many names: "classical liberals" (not the same as modern liberals at all, but followers of Thomas Jefferson and similar thinkers), libertarians, paleoconservatives, constitutionalists, voluntarists, etc., etc."
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BillG

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Re:Can geo-libertarianism even be called libertarianism?
« Reply #10 on: December 05, 2003, 12:04:24 pm »

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the Right to 'be' and the Right to 'be' somewhere are entirely different animals.

just because to live you must, by physical nature, occupy 3-D space does not entitle you to any particular space.

Michael - I am back (with full membership rights restored)!

You've got the entitled part wrong here. We have entitled the landed few to be able to exclude ALL others backed by government force and because there is no "unclaimed" land left there is no more somewhere to *be*... This Geo-Lib is not arguing for entitlements - I am simply looking for freedom based on a just society protecting the common rights of ALL from being infringed on by the entitled few. The original classical liberal view...

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if this is the case, then it MUST be extended to all the other necessities required to live: air, food, water, etc... some could even extend it to the right to sunshine or human interaction because without these, a human would most likely become emotionally unstable or psychotic.

Since we have the right to life and thus right to be somewhere...if the commons are ALL privatized then you have no way to interact with the natural world without paying tribute to someone else. That someone else does not PRODUCE the natural world (the commons) it exists prior to labor.

When the natural world remains as part of the commons and we assign our inalienable, individual rights to all equally which allows use of the commons so long as it does not infringe on any one else's use rights...the logical extention is that those that want more than their share or the exclusive right to some use part of the commons (btw - this is a natural urge of all humankind to want to seek advantage or want to better their own or family's circumstances but needs to be applied justly to the fruit's of their labor) have to compensate all others thru the paying of economic scarcity rent. This rent is a natural occurence as people compete for a fixed supply and it's existence predates even the idea or formation of government.

The right to emotional stability is not a pre-requisite to life - just ask the AnCrappers...

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the Right to 'be' Somewhere fallacy can more easily be shown its true characteristics if you imagine that all land by divided up evenly so that each parcel can sustain the life of One human.  Upon each of these parcels One human lives.  What happens when the next human is born?  Does his Right to 'be' overrule the Rights of all the others - either this 'overpopulation' of one dies, or everyone dies because to divide up all the existing land to redistribute in equal sums to include this new human, would by definition provide less than the quantity necessary to sustain any human on their parcel.

Michael just take your analogy and substitute "air" for "land" and you will see how it can work. Each additional person born access the air is not an infringement on anyone else's right to the air. On the other hand pollution is using more than one has a right to and seriously calls into question the rights of self-ownership as you breathe someone else's pollution...

This is a strawman's argument because we have said all along that land remaining in individual hands is the best, most efficient system but what we are talking about is the economic scarcity rent being returned to the rightful owners and the use of government to do this is enforcing a rightful debt thus does not violate ZAP.

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There is no Right to 'be somewhere', or Right to Eat, or Breathe

If there is no right to breathe or right to *be somewhere* there is no right to life. If one has access to the material world one can "produce" their own food or trade their labor for it.

But, no one no matter how hard they try can produce the natural world (land, air, water) it pre-exists humans themselves and therefore their labor...

Quote
Georgist thought REQUIRES governmental force to redistribute wealth... that in and of itself should put a red flag out to anyone slightly taken' by its socialist 'feel good' message that 'We all deserve to be alive and deserve to share in the spoils of work by others equally because we are alive'

This is simply untrue. The force is to insure a rightful debt goes to those that produce the value and not to those that neither produce the land nor the value and extract a "tax" on the fruits of someone's labor simply for being ALIVE and return ZERO product or service inkind..in other words - involuntary servitude!
« Last Edit: December 05, 2003, 01:19:20 pm by BillG (not Gates) »
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LeopardPM

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Re:Can geo-libertarianism even be called libertarianism?
« Reply #11 on: December 05, 2003, 12:09:33 pm »

Welcome Back, BillG!

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TMA68

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Re:Can geo-libertarianism even be called libertarianism?
« Reply #12 on: December 05, 2003, 01:09:19 pm »

the Right to 'be' and the Right to 'be' somewhere are entirely different animals.

Orwellian doublethink if ever I heard it. How can one "be" without being "somewhere?" If you can't provide an answer to this question, then your argument falls apart.

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just because to live you must, by physical nature, occupy 3-D space does not entitle you to any particular space.

This is the most hysterical case of self-contradiction -- of wanting to have one's cake and eat it too -- that I've ever seen. Only in the Bizzaro world of right-wing "libertarians" can a person who has no right to "occupy" 3-D space have a right to "live" in 3-D space. In the real world, to live is[/b] to occupy 3-D space. Thus, to deny that a person has a right to the latter is to deny he or she has a right to the former. All the arguments against geolibertarianism are nothing more than a tortured attempt to evade this very obvious truth.

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if this is the case, then it MUST be extended to all the other necessities required to live: air, food, water, etc...

To the extent those things exist in their natural state (i.e. independently of human labor), yes, the right to life must indeed be extended to them as well. It should not be extended, however, to products of human labor (e.g., houses, cars, prescription drugs, etc.).

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the Right to 'be' Somewhere fallacy

The "fallacy" is your own, as we shall see below.

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can more easily be shown its true characteristics if you imagine that all land by divided up evenly so that each parcel can sustain the life of One human.  Upon each of these parcels One human lives.  What happens when the next human is born?  Does his Right to 'be' overrule the Rights of all the others -

No, it merely limits the rights of all others. The only alternative is to claim that, by the mere act of being born later rather than sooner, the person in question has no right to life. And to assert that a person has no right to life is to reject the notion that everyone -- "by virtue of being human being" (as Rothbard himself put it) -- has a right of self-ownership, since the very object of that ownership has no right to exist in the first place.

To understand just how absurd the anti-geolibertarian rhetoric in this forum is, here are some hypothetical exchanges between various libertarian authors and certain FSP posters (who I will assume have had a rare attack of forthrightness):

David Boaz (Libertarianism: A Primer, p. 59): "Because every person owns himself, his body and his mind, he has the right to life."

FSP poster:  "Wrong!  You're confusing concepts.  Self ownership, and right to life, are two different things. Thus, a person who owns himself does not necessarily have a right to life." (Right JRedwine?)

David Bergland (Libertarianism In One Lesson, p. 5): "The self-ownership principle draws a line around each individual, creating a zone of privacy and freedom of action. We must respect the other's rights to act within his or her zone."

FSP poster: Wrong!! We must do no such thing if the 'self' in question was stupid enough to be born after the land has already been divided up among those born before him. If every geographic position on the planet is already owned by other individuals, then this person has no 'right' to engage in 'action' of any kind, for to do so would be to violate someone else's right to property! Indeed, in such a context, the 'self' in question has no right to exist in the first place. And if he has no right to exist, it is delusional to claim he has 'freedom of action,' for existence necessarily precedes action."

Ayn Rand (Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal, p. 321): "There is only one fundamental right (all others are its consequences or corollaries): a man's right to his own life. Life is a process of self-sustaining and self-generated action; the right to life means the right to engage in self-sustaining and self-generated action."

FSP poster: Hold it right there, Ayn! Where, pray tell, is this 'self-sustaining action' going to take place? If the 'man' in question is born into a world in which all the land -- the land on which any exercise of this so-called right must inevitably take place -- is already owned by others, then it is going to take place on someone else's property!!!  Thus, if your notion of man's 'right to life' is taken to its logical conclusion, we end up with socialism!"

I could go on, but I think the point has been made. Though they'll never admit it in a thousand years, the anti-geolibertarians of this forum are hoplessly at odds with the underlying principles of their own philosophy.

Todd Altman
« Last Edit: December 05, 2003, 01:11:09 pm by TMA68 »
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Herself

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Re:Can geo-libertarianism even be called libertarianism?
« Reply #13 on: December 05, 2003, 01:56:33 pm »

Todd, it is your own perceptual framework and premises that are invalid.
     This "right to be somewhere" you insist on assumes humans pop into being fully-adult, out of nothing.  It further assumes that humans are so devoid of value to others that they would never, ever be granted "space" on spec or as charity.

     Let's turn Bill's old chestnut, "what if it was air or water?" around, and ask from what source, in the real world, do humans get the starting necessities of life?  From their parents (etc.).
     Land -- "a space in which to be" -- comes from Mom and Dad, too, or Auntie Em or the orphanage, precisely the same as do food, drink, shelter, clothing and a degree of freedom from noxious gasses.

     What you're asking for is for the State to turn Nanny, at a level far more fundamental that ever before; and that's why "geo-lib" is irretrievably flawed.  The Nanny-state is the socialist core of "geo-lib"

     All of your quotes (except, arguably, Locke) support the opposite of what you try to read into them: the writers say that one's ownership of property is to be undilute, not that everyone else has some "claim" against it.  The writers argue against the State having a claim upon one's property and against one's fellows having a claim on it.
     I would suggest that producing children does not create any obligation on one's neighbors, only upon oneself; if you are bringing more children into this world than you can provide for, in terms of water, food, clothing, shelter or "space," that is your problem, not mine.  

     Further, the accusatory, sneering tone you take towards those who differ with you is not appropriate to discussion.  You do not share a conceptual framework with libertarians; accept it.
     As for Bill, his continued use of the term "AnCrapper" makes perfectly clear the level of maturity he chooses to express.  C'mon, Bill, they let you back in -- why not play nice?

     I will have none of your notions; I believe them to be wrong, and feel certain they will expand the power and invasiveness of government.  I urge any libertarian to oppose the distortions of "geo-lib," and work instead to strengthen property rights and weaken government.

     --Herself
« Last Edit: December 05, 2003, 03:15:18 pm by Herself »
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Re:Can geo-libertarianism even be called libertarianism?
« Reply #14 on: December 05, 2003, 02:14:19 pm »

Todd,  if you are bringing more children into this world than you can provide for, in terms of water, food, clothing, shelter or "space," that is your problem, not mine.  

Not so fast my girl.  He may turn out to live next door.

Hehehe .... ;D

Robert
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The oldest political error: Because *everyone* wants something, government must provide it.
If the error is pervasive, the result is a society of totally enslaved people.
If the error is completely uprooted, the result is a society of totally free people.[/glow]
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