Sam Harris believes people distrusting the State are practicing paranoia, dogmatism, and a recipe for anarchy. Anti-State individuals are irrelevant, childish, and imbeciles.
“This whole business about “statism” I find profoundly uninteresting.” – Sam Harris
Anyone else noticing the “blind spot” that Sam Harris failed to address in his discussion with Apple for his latest podcast? Namely Government abuse of power (AKA Tyranny)?
It’s starting to become so blatant and so obvious, and I have such high respect for his intellect, that I’m starting to believe this “blind spot” is intentional.
I know he said these are his first thoughts on the subject, however, I notice a common “logic” that he exercises on a frequent basis. It seems in his discussions on various issues, he fails to properly address the reality that there are individuals with a Government title that wield a monopoly on violence. Some of these individuals may not be as “evil” as Jihadists, but are ultimately self-serving and willing to crush independent liberties if politically feasible. These individuals, should they commit these very same actions as non-Government officials, would be considered unethical, yet somehow, Sam Harris provides an “exception” clause. Sam Harris repeatedly fails to explain how a Government title exempts an individual from the standard laws of ethics that apply to the rest of us.
He pointed out some examples to support his case for the FBI which are of such fringe concerns, yet sets them up as the foundation of his argument:
1) It’s inconceivable that there would be anywhere on Earth, a room, or a physical space, where no one can gain access to forever.
2) There are people who have filmed murders on their phone, and if only the police could gain access to it, it would reveal the murderer.
3) Terrorists and criminals use the encryption to their advantage.
4) You can trust the Government to not abuse the power of decryption since you have a “court order.”
1) To equate a digital space to have the same ethics as physical space is fallacious. Primarily, no one is deprived of anything when you deprive them of your digital “space.” You can have infinite “digital” space, but you are limited to “physical” space.
2) How frequently does this actually happen per year? We may “suspect” there is some useful footage, but how many murder victims had enough time to setup their smart phones to record their own murder? This is a false premise to “authority,” made especially obvious when he said his source is a “district attorney” whom he won’t mention.
3) And so do innocent individuals who want to protect their privacy from Government bureaucrats and law enforcement who frequently demonstrate their penchant to abuse their monopoly on violence. Once this unlock tool gets released to the FBI, does Sam Harris seriously believe it won’t eventually be released to the State, County, and City level?
4) What world does he live in where the judicial system can be trusted, in the long run, to rule against Government officials that pay their salaries and give them their power?
SAM HARRIS’ LOGIC: When it comes to trusting individuals with a Government title versus individuals without a Government title, Sam Harris errs on the side of Government tyranny, because without Government tyranny, terrorists and murderers will rule the world.
Sacrifice your individual liberties under the guise of safety by your benevolent protectors: Government bureaucrats.
Moral Absolutism is true [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moral_absolutism]
Morality can be discovered through the use of Deductive Reasoning from these Axioms [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deductive_reasoning]
[The Meta Axioms can be generally understood as Deontology as a subset of Normative Ethics, https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Normative_ethics]
“A PRIORI” (Independent of Experience)
VS. “A POSTERIORI” (Dependent on Experience / Empirical Evidence)
AXIOM 1 [A1]
The individual is the basic unit of moral concern [https://www.theobjectivestandard.com/issues/2012-spring/individualism-collectivism/]
AXIOM 2 [A2]
You own your own human essence (ie. body, mind, spirit) and the product of that essence (labor) [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Self-ownership]
AXIOM 3 [A3]
Unclaimed natural resources (ie. land, trees, etc.) become morally, and individually owned by mixing natural resources with human labor [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homestead_principle]
AXIOM 4 [A4]
A Government achieves its means through violence and the threat of violence on involuntary participants (“a monopoly on violence”)
The individual is not morally responsible for the actions of another individual unless directly involved
A Government is a group of individuals
A Government made up of individual moral units is bound by the same morality as the individuals by which it is formed
1. An individual has a right to their own Life (body & labor)
2. An individual has a right to their own Personal Property justly obtained
3. An individual has a right to not be interfered with by another individual if they are not violating #1 & #2 of another individual (Liberty)
The INITIATION of force by one individual against another (ie. theft, murder, slavery, fraud, and kidnapping) violates their Natural Rights through involuntary means and is therefore morally wrong [“Non-Aggression Principle” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Non-aggression_principle]
The only moral means to obtain Life or Personal Property from another individual is through voluntary and free exchange, and homesteading
SECOND LEVEL DEDUCTIONS
Individuals may use violence (or appoint an Agent to use violence) in protection from an initiating Aggressor violating an individual’s Natural Rights
If the Non-Aggression Principle applies to individuals, then the Non-Aggression Principle should apply to individuals in a Government
Individuals in a Government that violate the Non-Aggression Principle are acting immorally
A Government that bombs non-aggressor individuals is immoral (Murder)
A Government that drafts through involuntary means is immoral (Slavery)
A Government that imprisons non-violent drug offenders is immoral (Kidnapping)
A Government that taxes through involuntary means is immoral (Theft)
A white male asked this question in a Facebook Group called: Common Sense with Dan Carlin:
“In this world you want to create [in relation to Libertarian ideology], what would happen if you were born into a poor family. There is no free education, no subsidized healthcare, just what your family could afford. How much of your livelihood, your future, depends on the education and healthcare you receive before you can make decisions for yourself? In a post-modern, information age, how much will your labor be worth? Will you be able to support yourself in the future, could you support your own family? Would your children be destined to start at the same point you had?”
Here was my response:
AM I THE ONLY NON-WHITE PERSON IN THIS GROUP? This is NOT a hypothetical, but what goes on TODAY.
I’ll give you some homework. Go to the dry cleaner’s, nail salon, Teriyaki store, or Asian immigrant owned business and get to know the business owner. Talk to them about their life story, how much money they had when they immigrated to America, what life was like in their home country. Listen to how much they’ve suffered, and risked. Listen to how many hours they work. Listen to how much government “hand outs” they’ve received over the course of their life (oh wait, they weren’t raised here, so they didn’t get much).
And then after you hear all that, lecture them about how they’re “exploiting” their workers and that they are horrible people for not paying their employees a “living wage.” Then lecture them about how they should be paying maternity leave. And lecture them about how their GREED is destroying people’s lives.
Lecture these immigrant entrepreneurs on how they’re responsible for the income inequality for blacks and women. In fact, go to the inner-city, and find these Korean liquor store owners and tell them they need to pay reparations. Explain to them how impossible their poverty is, and they shouldn’t even try to better their circumstance because they didn’t get the proper “education” and proper government “entitlements.”
Because many of these laws and regulations are intended to “balance the scales” for past / current perceived “injustices” that go on between the BLACK/WHITE narrative. WHITE GUILT. Get over it.
Asian entrepreneurs are proving false the typical “I’m the victim. I’m too poor” narrative. Get over yourselves, and stop punishing Asian entrepreneurs for the sins of the White man. Get to know the Asian entrepreneurs in your neighborhoods and open your eyes toward upward, economic mobility that doesn’t require Government hand-outs.
Then, you will understand how more government regulations actually hurt opportunity, not for the hypothetical, but for the tangible, Asian immigrants living life next door to you right now.
Anatomy of the State: https://mises.org/library/anatomy-state
An Honest Conversation with a Communist: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1TgdLkGwbTw
Public school portrayal
Need government to protect from evil capitalists
Need the government.
Nature of government, coercion, violence
Nature of capitalism, voluntary interactions (“Clean Capitalism)
Vs. Crony Capitalism
What is money? Stored time, human labour, and natural resources
Both are better off
People will only choose actions for which they’ll be better off
The time, labor, resources, and risk of the Entrepreneur is not considered in the debate on minimum wage. Minimum wage is unethical appropriation (cousin to the term “theft”) from the small business owner to the employee.
There’s more to the cost of things besides JUST human labor. There is risk, time, reputation, initial capital investments, etc. that need to be considered on what a “fair wage” is.
For the entrepreneur who ends up losing money after two years of business, the hourly workers come out ahead! Who’s going to pay for the entrepreneurs’ losses? Will the government? What about the hourly workers?
The complexity is so severe in determining a “fair wage”, that only two private parties can come to a mutual, voluntary understanding. Someone from the outside cannot realistically consider all factors involved from both sides, except the individuals involved in the transaction.
Right to your own labor as exerts from your body.
MORE DISCUSSION ON HOW MARX GOT IT RIGHT & LABOUR THEORY OF VALUE: http://tomwoods.com/podcast/ep-509-was-karl-marx-right-about-anything/
We talk about a whole gamut of issues, and find there is more to agree with than disagree. I was prepared for more of a fundamental interpretation of Marx, so a lot of my notes didn’t apply.
There is indeed a class struggle between the Oppressors and Oppressed. Except the Oppressors is the Government bought out by Crony-Capitalists, the oppressed are small business owners and working class.
A class consciousness must be formed to fight against Crony-Capitalism. Is the end of history the elimination of government and allowing the Oppressed to have voluntary transactions among each other?
Talk about personal backgrounds / upbringing, parents, and personal experiences, personal observations that led us toward our particular ideology.
Personal Experience with Libertarian-Capitalism
Personal Experience with Socialism
Difference between a “Principle” vs. “Practicality”
Agreements with Marx.
FUNDAMENTAL INDIVIDUAL RIGHTS
NATURAL RIGHTS – “natural” in the sense of “not artificial, not man-made”, as in rights deriving from deontic logic, from human nature, or from the edicts of a god. They are universal; that is, they apply to all people, and do not derive from the laws of any specific society. They exist necessarily, inhere in every individual, and can’t be taken away. For example, it has been argued that humans have a natural right to life. These are sometimes called moral rights or inalienable rights.
According to John Locke there are three natural rights:
Life: everyone is entitled to live once they are born.
Liberty: everyone is entitled to do anything they want to so long as it doesn’t conflict with the first right.
Estate: everyone is entitled to own all they create or gain through gift or trade so long as it doesn’t conflict with the first two rights.
LEGAL RIGHTS – in contrast, are based on a society’s customs, laws, statutes or actions by legislatures. An example of a legal right is the right to vote of citizens. Citizenship, itself, is often considered as the basis for having legal rights, and has been defined as the “right to have rights”. Legal rights are sometimes called civil rights or statutory rights and are culturally and politically relative since they depend on a specific societal context to have meaning.
NEGATIVE RIGHTS – are permissions not to do things, or entitlements to be left alone. Often the distinction is invoked by libertarians who think of a negative rightas an entitlement to non-interference such as a right against being assaulted.
“That which has legitimate use of force in defense of”
“Is universal for all times and all peoples”
“Beyond the authority of any government or international body to dismiss”
Self-Body (Two eyes vs. one eyes)
Right to Suicide?
Justly Acquired Property (Homesteading vs Verbal)
POSITIVE RIGHTS – are permissions to do things, or entitlements to be done unto. One example of a positive right is the purported “right to welfare.”
Right to Vote?
THINGS WE AGREE ON? (Quick-fire, will come back to at end if time to specific issues)
Appropriation – to take to or for oneself; take possession of. (fruits of labor to employer)
Is this theory saying that morally speaking the Price should be the same as Absolute Value?
State is now exploiter if no capitalist. Two workers work one hour, one produces 3 units, the other 1 unit. Average is two. Government exploits excess surplus Labor via redistribution, and takes one for its bureaucracy.
How would you decide what work is paid, and what is not?
My recording vs. other YouTube videos, same Absolute Value? What about my preparation into studying, compiling, and researching this topic?
How is risk calculated?
Example: Last Tuesday, you expressed interest in cancelling our conversation for today. We scheduled for Saturday 12PM. The next day, an ER doctor friend of mine, who’s free time is understandably scarce, had an opening in his schedule to meet up at the same time for another intellectually stimulating conversation. In addition, I realized the amount of human labor and time I’d need to do in preparation of this discussion was going to be quite significant (of which it’s probably been 20 hours or more). Suddenly, my time became scarce as I can only choose one activity at that particular time slot.
I considered the psychic value in a rare opportunity for me to record a discussion with a Socialist. I considered the psychic value I have in keeping my appointments and not reneging unless absolutely necessary (ie. family emergency).
However, due to the uncertainty of whether or not you would attempt to cancel a second time, caused me to explicitly ask your certainty of committing to the conversation between a scale of 0% – 100%. If I had received a 95% or lower “sureness” of the conversation, then I would had seriously considered cancelling the conversation depending on the degree to which you were below 100%.
To me, the deciding factor on which conversation I valued more greatly hinged on perceived risk and psychic reward, rather than purely “human labour.” Can you describe my narrative in a different fashion to fit the “labour theory of value” if applicable?
What about my human labour as manager in hiring the human labour and coordinating their schedules? Do I receive compensation for that?
What about the human labour in me coordinating the logistics of bringing all the capital and consumer goods into a hotel guest room (water, electricity, gas, sewage, shower, toilet, towels, linens, furniture, beds, lights, lightbulbs, TVs, breakfast foods, cereal, milk, etc.)?
What about advertising efforts, Price management, Bill Payments, accounting, capital investment, attempts to anticipate for future events
What about saving money for a time when I’ll be losing money after all expenses or to plan for unexpected expenses?
What about potential lawsuits from customers and employees?
What about saving money to cover hotel furniture, and other equipment at the hotel?
Explain process of rate management for hotel: How does this explain that room rates are much higher during busier times, and cheaper when it’s less busy? Rates are changing almost hourly (because I do it), based off of the pricing of my competitors. Generally, Price and Absolute Value remain the same.
Getting 10 iPhone 6s now, or one iPhone 6 every 5 years (ie. technological obsolescence, risk of death, & psychic value of certainty)
Depreciation calculations for used items? So pricing structure for Ebay & Craigslist items?
Finding Diamond vs. Mining Diamond
What about results / productivity?
What about natural resources?
iPhones? Software? Intellectual?
Micro-Transactions in Video Games?
Painted Art / Music (Questionable Music Artists)
What about all the study, preparation, and training that leads up to the moment of “production?” ie. Sports Stars, MMA Fights, etc.
Movie Stars? Production or Theft?
Do results matter?
What about natural talent?
What about the drug addict? What about the worker who doesn’t show up to work on time? What about the worker that yells at customers and co-workers in a hostile fashion?
Individuals providing more productive value than they are paid
Individuals providing less productive value than they are paid
– Is morality individual or communal? Am I responsible for the sins of a different individual? Do I receive righteousness from another individual?
– Marxism dehumanizes the “Bourgeoisie” removing fundamental human rights, but line between the two classes is fluid.
DIFFERENTIATING BETWEEN PROLETARIAT AND BOURGEOISIE IN TODAY’S COMPLEX ECONOMY
At what point did I go from being Proletariat to Bourgeois?
Restaurants / Food Trucks
Do you have any friends who are Bourgeois?
Can you provide the narrative by which they transitioned from one class to another?
How would you describe the Asian immigrant experience of limited English and no possessions, and then amassing wealth during the 1970s & 1980s to present through small business enterprise?
What happens if someone tries to start a small business, then fails, and goes back to working for someone else?
Landscaping company startup example. $100 lawn mower purchased, $50 from each partner. 50% ownership. Both split profits 50/50. They bill customers with payment to be received in 90 days. After a year, one partner wants to do something else, and lawn mower now worth $50. One partner buys off the other partner $25, for his share of lawn mower. Now single owner needs additional person to help. Can’t find anyone willing to put in $25 for the initial capital of the lawnmower and wait to possibly share in profits since payment is so long, but someone is willing to mow lawn for hourly rate if he can get paid immediately upon completion.
So if I’m building a hotel from scratch, I will operate the hotel at a loss for a little bit, and there’s a chance the entire enterprise may fail. I may not get retrieval on cash flow for many years. Is it possible that employees trade in their share of the end price for the more certain wages paid by me? And thus, lower risk, shorter timeframe, means less reward? This is contrasted with other “investors” who invest in the initial construction and startup costs, and share in my risk & rewards.
What about web programmers who act as freelancers?
What about business-to-business enterprises?
Becoming self-employed as a means to stop being Proletariat?
What about wealth building by being a landlord?
Possible to work for someone, and also be a landlord? Possible to be both classes at once?
What if you own stocks or mutual funds?
– Expropriation – The act of taking of privately owned property by a government to be used for the benefit of the public.
Do you believe in the ability of an individual in American society to say “no” to a job of a certain wage?