5 of 13
5
Shermer on the humanist movement, and on libertarianism
Posted: 08 November 2007 04:11 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 61 ]
Sr. Member
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  895
Joined  2007-05-09

Libertarian and Postmodernist ... hmm ... there’s no such thing as truth because its all a human construct and to each his own. Makes sense to me. :^]

Profile
 
 
Posted: 08 November 2007 04:56 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 62 ]
Moderator
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  5508
Joined  2006-10-22

While economically sophisticated people such as Friedman and Greenspan claim to be libertarians, their ideas are greatly at variance with the views of the average libertarian.  I picked up a pamphlet put out by the Calif. Libertarians explicating their views in about thirty points.  When carefully analyzed, about two of them made sense.

Reality merely exists; it isn’t based on any sentient input.  Sentient beings, in this case humans, attempt to identify reality, and they label their conclusions as truth.  The less closely truth describes reality, the more it could be called “truth”.  Just because someone calls his/her beliefs truth doesn’t make them true or give them equal value to all other statements claimed to be truth.  It is definitely not “to each his own.”  Personal “truth” is actual truth only to the extent which it matches and can be shown to match reality. 

In short, postmodernism and libertarianism are ideas that sound profound to shallow thinkers, but are severely flawed and ultimately useless.

Occam

Profile
 
 
Posted: 09 November 2007 07:34 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 63 ]
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  418
Joined  2007-07-19

My statements stemmed from a segment on economics.  I should have said Greenspan & Friedman were economic libertarians.  There social views are also known, but definitely vary more significantly than their economic views.  To go down the social libertarian road would require somewhat of a semantic game about old republicans being new democrats and that makes little sense to me, a young’in.

As for my personal views, I could have been clearer.  I am significantly more of an economic libertarian than I am a social libertarian.  Claiming any libertarian status is difficult because it lacks the obvious historical lessons that other political affiliations have.  That is why I prefer to call myself a theoretical libertarian and a practical liberal.

 Signature 

“It is the tension between creativity and skepticism that has produced the stunning and unexpected findings of science.” ~ Carl Sagan

Profile
 
 
Posted: 10 November 2007 12:24 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 64 ]
Sr. Member
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  459
Joined  2007-06-19

While economically sophisticated people such as Friedman and Greenspan claim to be libertarians, their ideas are greatly at variance with the views of the average libertarian.

I Agree.

Although Friedman’s contribution was hughe and very important and, although based on his work,  the theory of rational expectations is now considered to be a better explanaiton of the economics behaviour. Moreover, there is evidence that some (clasic) keynessian ideas are true when the market is in very depressed position (for instance, temporary tax reductions work well when the market is very depressed, but they are useless in market suffering a moderate stagnation).

Libertarisnism is based on flawed and simplistic economics views. It fails to acknowledge the capital intensive markets, economies of scale, environmental factors and some psicological facts (as the fact about nominal and real wages) and it has an oversimplistic concept of private property.

Profile
 
 
Posted: 12 November 2007 07:31 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 65 ]
Sr. Member
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  1214
Joined  2007-09-21
zarcus - 08 November 2007 04:11 PM

Libertarian and Postmodernist ... hmm ... there’s no such thing as truth because its all a human construct and to each his own. Makes sense to me. :^]

Sure.  Just that I wouldn’t put myself in either of those categories, although I agree with some of their precepts, because they also suggest many convictions which I don’t hold.  That was my point about the problem with geo-political labels (and non-religious labels for that matter).  Sometimes there isn’t a clear fence to place oneself on a side of.

That being said, there can be utility in labels as well.

Profile
 
 
Posted: 12 November 2007 07:32 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 66 ]
Sr. Member
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  1214
Joined  2007-09-21
Occam - 08 November 2007 04:56 PM

In short, postmodernism and libertarianism are ideas that sound profound to shallow thinkers, but are severely flawed and ultimately useless.

Agreed.

Profile
 
 
Posted: 04 July 2009 12:04 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 67 ]
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  226
Joined  2006-04-07

Barto, amen and indeed! Dr. Paul Krugman, Nobel-prize winner, advocates evidenced-based economics rather than the deductions of the it must be so’s of the Austrian school and the still narrow Chicago school.
  I just had to post this! Shermer needs to study Krugman and other evidenced-based economists!
  Thankfuly, Obama-Biden prefer that!

[ Edited: 04 July 2009 12:13 PM by Carneades [ lord griggs1947] ]
 Signature 

Fr. Griggs rests in his Socratic ignorance and humble naturalism.He might be wrong!His cognitive defects might impact his posting. Logic is the bane of theists.‘Religion is mythinformation.“Reason saves, not that fanatic Galilean!
  ’ Life is its own validation and reward and ultimate purpose.”

Profile
 
 
Posted: 20 July 2009 03:38 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 68 ]
Jr. Member
Avatar
RankRank
Total Posts:  38
Joined  2009-06-03

Economy and political philosophy are tricky subjects. People usually tend to claim they understand more about them than they actually do. Lots of pseudo religious thought. I am a libertarian because of my scientific world view and my ethics and morals. Living in socialistic pseudo capitalism of modern Europe with larger than life corporations and often impotent governments with all the power in their hands just don’t suit my ideal of moral life or human dignity. As I see it modern corporatism backed up by social democratic central powers do not represent libertarianism or even capitalism, certainly it’s not free market.

To me it is clear that human life does not wheel on some artificial tracks of political theory. Different subjects require different approach. I do not favor any kind of social security, but I certainly see why it is necessary sometimes in order to save lives and decrease suffering. This is not contradictory thinking, it’ realism. My personal likes and dislikes should NOT ever be a basis for the society in general. That’s why for me classical libertarianism is the best moral foundation for political thinking in it’s rejection of governmental oppression. Government should be about protecting people not governing them. Complex systems such as a modern society can not ever be governed fairly and effectively with strong central power that dictates lives of the people. It demeans human dignity, allows stupid laws to be made, weakens the economy and threaten the development of human culture.

That’s my opinion. Anyone is of course free to disagree as long as I’m free to think for my self. That kind of freedom can never exist in a Marxist utopia.

Profile
 
 
Posted: 20 July 2009 05:46 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 69 ]
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  4576
Joined  2008-08-14
Eero T. Eloranta - 20 July 2009 03:38 AM

Economy and political philosophy are tricky subjects. People usually tend to claim they understand more about them than they actually do. Lots of pseudo religious thought. I am a libertarian because of my scientific world view and my ethics and morals. Living in socialistic pseudo capitalism of modern Europe with larger than life corporations and often impotent governments with all the power in their hands just don’t suit my ideal of moral life or human dignity. As I see it modern corporatism backed up by social democratic central powers do not represent libertarianism or even capitalism, certainly it’s not free market.

To me it is clear that human life does not wheel on some artificial tracks of political theory. Different subjects require different approach. I do not favor any kind of social security, but I certainly see why it is necessary sometimes in order to save lives and decrease suffering. This is not contradictory thinking, it’ realism. My personal likes and dislikes should NOT ever be a basis for the society in general. That’s why for me classical libertarianism is the best moral foundation for political thinking in it’s rejection of governmental oppression. Government should be about protecting people not governing them. Complex systems such as a modern society can not ever be governed fairly and effectively with strong central power that dictates lives of the people. It demeans human dignity, allows stupid laws to be made, weakens the economy and threaten the development of human culture.

That’s my opinion. Anyone is of course free to disagree as long as I’m free to think for my self. That kind of freedom can never exist in a Marxist utopia.

Coming from Finnland-I’m sure you have a special take on “Marxist Utopias”. But when will people stop using that phrase? It is obviously just a hyperbolic argumentative technique, to counter any claims concerning the justification of any kind of socialization.
And anything anyone experienced in a genuine communist country, was quickly dispelled after about 1-3 years after the inception of said communist nation.( concerning utopias)
You said above, that most people claim to understand more about politics than they actually do. This is due to the complicated and tricky nature. I disagree. For the purposes of control, and the purposes of sustaining a given Bureaucracy, politics is MADE to seem more complicated than it really is.
You said government should not be about “governing” people, but about protecting them.
Why don’t you please just explain exactly what the Government should protect people from. Each other? Other nations? Natural disasters? Diseases? What? What should the government protect me from? How about pressures from more wealthy folks, who can manipulate labor markets, manipulate the Supply and demand laws, etc. If you say no- government should not interfere, those things work themselves out. Well when people rise up and take arms against those wealthy entities, should the government still keep their hands off? Go ahead…I’d love to hear a response.

 Signature 

Row row row your boat gently down the stream.  Merrily Merrily merrily merrily life is but a dream!

Profile
 
 
Posted: 20 July 2009 07:02 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 70 ]
Jr. Member
Avatar
RankRank
Total Posts:  38
Joined  2009-06-03
VYAZMA - 20 July 2009 05:46 AM

You said above, that most people claim to understand more about politics than they actually do. This is due to the complicated and tricky nature. I disagree. For the purposes of control, and the purposes of sustaining a given Bureaucracy, politics is MADE to seem more complicated than it really is.

Modern society is incredible complex web of interactions. Just think about it. Logistics, food production, medical care, juridical system, schooling, trade and the list goes on. That is why there is no way for any individual or even a group of individuals to be able to handle all those issues. That is just one of the reasons communism was living hell to ordinary people. That is also the reason why there never can be a single ideology or theory that could tackle all those issues effectively. If such a thing could be constructed it would be humanity’s greatest achievement.

VYAZMA - 20 July 2009 05:46 AM

You said government should not be about “governing” people, but about protecting them.
Why don’t you please just explain exactly what the Government should protect people from. Each other? Other nations? Natural disasters? Diseases? What? What should the government protect me from? How about pressures from more wealthy folks, who can manipulate labor markets, manipulate the Supply and demand laws, etc. If you say no- government should not interfere, those things work themselves out. Well when people rise up and take arms against those wealthy entities, should the government still keep their hands off? Go ahead…I’d love to hear a response.

Pretty easy. The libertarian answer is basically that government should protect citizens from violence, disasters and oppression. Some may disagree, but that’s the basics as I see them. I guess you talk about corporatism. A libertarian sees corporatism as a governmental project. Many of the not so desired effects of capitalism are actually an interaction between government and big business. I totally oppose all that on moral and on pragmatical grounds.

You have to see that we do not live in a model so there is no way of going back. The burdens that we have are for us to bare. Communists never understood this in their quest for “Holy Land”. Libertarian values are the values of englightement and as such only recently invented. I do not claim that I have some kind of a superknowledge of all the best practices. But I do claim that many of the evils in this world could be eliminated by empowering the people instead of their governments.

Profile
 
 
Posted: 20 July 2009 09:02 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 71 ]
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  4576
Joined  2008-08-14

Modern society is incredible complex web of interactions. Just think about it. Logistics, food production, medical care, juridical system, schooling, trade and the list goes on. That is why there is no way for any individual or even a group of individuals to be able to handle all those issues. That is just one of the reasons communism was living hell to ordinary people. That is also the reason why there never can be a single ideology or theory that could tackle all those issues effectively. If such a thing could be constructed it would be humanity’s greatest achievement.

Right-that’s society! That isn’t government. No group of individuals ever claimed to handle all those logistics. Again you keep referencing communism. Why? Who’s talking about communism? This reveals a huge flaw in your argumentative point of view. Any outgrowth of government in relation to these societal logistics(healthcare, food, schooling, trade etc..) is either because private entities failed to provide for the population, or private entities are engaged in profiteering at the populations expense. If you want smaller government, then you must have smaller population, because government encompasses every citizen. Especially ones who’s voice is too small to be heard. Another reason government would step in to regulate, or form entities, would be for the benefit of society contained within that government. Schools for example. Any government worth it’s salt knows that education is important for the countries prosperity, and survival. The list goes on. Name me a modern industrialized nation that doesn’t have governmental controls, or regulation, or consumer protections. You can’t. It isn’t a coincidence- societies have evolved, into bureaucracies that are implaced to PROTECT the Citizens, just like you say. Now, you, or the conservatives, or the Libertarians, or whomever else say you have a better way, it’s all being done wrong. Well get in line. Everyone has a grievance with society.

Pretty easy. The libertarian answer is basically that government should protect citizens from violence, disasters and oppression. Some may disagree, but that’s the basics as I see them. I guess you talk about corporatism. A libertarian sees corporatism as a governmental project. Many of the not so desired effects of capitalism are actually an interaction between government and big business. I totally oppose all that on moral and on pragmatical grounds.

You have to see that we do not live in a model so there is no way of going back. The burdens that we have are for us to bare. Communists never understood this in their quest for “Holy Land”. Libertarian values are the values of englightement and as such only recently invented. I do not claim that I have some kind of a superknowledge of all the best practices. But I do claim that many of the evils in this world could be eliminated by empowering the people instead of their governments.

Government IS the way to empower people!! Democratically. How else do people get empowered? By forming companies, and syndicates? The only people who complain about governmental control over companies- is the company itself. Citizens who are effected by nearby pollution, and dying, or having birth defects, aren’t the ones complaining about governments. Unless it’s because the governments aren’t doing enough!!
I’d like for you to explain how, corporatism, and conglomeration, and industry will just roll along on it’s own, taking care of the populace, making sure it does things cleanly, safely, and fairly. We had that in this country, for over a century!!! It didn’t work. Well it worked fine for the companies. They had everything from slaves, and 12 year old workers, to open pit sewers that were filled with arsenic, and lead. They had goon squads that beat up employees for lateness, or slow work. They formed monopolies that choked off competition. They had their own incorporated towns for their employees, complete with stores, where the people worked for store credits, and not wages. They had Chinese Railroad employees who worked for Opium, and rotten fishheads. They sold products that caused cancers. They had corporate executives who were also in the Presidents Cabinent, Corporate Executives who were Judges. Congressman, Senators etc. This, The USA had all of this for well over 100 years, we still have many vestiges of it today!!! And your telling me LESS REGULATION is the ANSWER!!
If you’ll excuse me, this ain’t Finland here- we had all of this in Spades, we still do to an extent. I know what Finland experienced with Communism a little bit. So you saw the other end of the spectrum. In an effort to stave off communism, the Finns joined up with the nazis. So maybe the Finnish people are used to abiding by one extreme or another. I don’t know.

[ Edited: 20 July 2009 09:08 AM by VYAZMA ]
 Signature 

Row row row your boat gently down the stream.  Merrily Merrily merrily merrily life is but a dream!

Profile
 
 
Posted: 20 July 2009 09:43 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 72 ]
Jr. Member
Avatar
RankRank
Total Posts:  38
Joined  2009-06-03

I’m sorry VYAZMA but you did not get my message at all. I just stated that corporatism is exactly anti libertarian yet you seem to confuse them as the same thing.

I’m also skeptical as how much further this can go as you felt a need to insult my countrymen at the end of your message. It’s probably best to end this here.

Profile
 
 
Posted: 20 July 2009 09:50 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 73 ]
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  4576
Joined  2008-08-14
Eero T. Eloranta - 20 July 2009 09:43 AM

I’m sorry VYAZMA but you did not get my message at all. I just stated that corporatism is exactly anti libertarian yet you seem to confuse them as the same thing.

I’m also skeptical as how much further this can go as you felt a need to insult my countrymen at the end of your message. It’s probably best to end this here.

How is stating History an Insult? I’m pretty sure Finn Armies helped the nazis invade Leningrad. Of course we know many Finns also aided Lenin too. You can’t rebuff this.
Besides, who’s insulting who? Worry about Libertarianizing Finland, We’ll take care of the US.

 Signature 

Row row row your boat gently down the stream.  Merrily Merrily merrily merrily life is but a dream!

Profile
 
 
Posted: 20 July 2009 09:53 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 74 ]
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  4576
Joined  2008-08-14

And, If you don’t wish to continue that’s Ok..But you fail to see that corporatism can only be the logical outcome of these Libertarian Values you espouse! No? Come on!!

 Signature 

Row row row your boat gently down the stream.  Merrily Merrily merrily merrily life is but a dream!

Profile
 
 
Posted: 20 July 2009 10:00 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 75 ]
Jr. Member
Avatar
RankRank
Total Posts:  38
Joined  2009-06-03
VYAZMA - 20 July 2009 09:50 AM
Eero T. Eloranta - 20 July 2009 09:43 AM

I’m sorry VYAZMA but you did not get my message at all. I just stated that corporatism is exactly anti libertarian yet you seem to confuse them as the same thing.

I’m also skeptical as how much further this can go as you felt a need to insult my countrymen at the end of your message. It’s probably best to end this here.

How is stating History an Insult? I’m pretty sure Finn Armies helped the nazis invade Leningrad. Of course we know many Finns also aided Lenin too. You can’t rebuff this.
Besides, who’s insulting who? Worry about Libertarianizing Finland, We’ll take care of the US.

Dear VYAZMA. I don’t think discussing political though is insulting. As I have not insulted you or United States, I feel I have no other way to interpret your message than that as a Finnish person I am not allowed to comment on U.S. society. To me that is absurd. It’s also very much against humanistic values.

I don’t understand what your list of historical trivia has to do with the subject. By insulting Finnish I of course meant your speculation concerning Finnish people and their general mentality. It was ill-informed and with strong negative implications.

Profile
 
 
   
5 of 13
5