Category Archives: libertarianism

UPDATED (10/12): Everyone Has Property Rights, Whether They Know it or Not

America, Classical Liberalism, Critique, History, Individual Rights, libertarianism, Natural Law, Objectivism, Private Property

A NEW ESSAY, “Everyone Has Property Rights, Whether They Know it or Not,” is on Mises Wire.

The Indian tribesman’s claim to his ancient stomping grounds can’t be reduced to a title search at the deeds office. That’s the stuff of the positive law. And this was the point I took away from a conversation, circa 2000, with Mr. Property Rights himself, Hans-Hermann Hoppe.

Dr. Hoppe argued unassailably—does he argue any other way?—that if Amerindians had repeatedly traversed, for their livelihood, the same hunting, fishing and foraging grounds, they would have, in effect, homesteaded these, making them their own. Another apodictic profundity deduced from that conversation: The strict Lockean stipulation, whereby to make property one’s own, one must transform it to Western standards, is not convincing.

In an article marking Columbus Day—the day Conservatism Inc. beats up on what remains of America’s First People—Ryan McMaken debunked Ayn Rand’s specious claim that aboriginal Americans “did not have the concept of property or property rights.” This was Rand’s ruse for justifying Europeans’ disregard for the homesteading rights of the First Nations. “[T]he Indian tribes had no right to the land they lived on because” they were primitive and nomadic.

Hoppean Homesteading

Cultural supremacy is no argument for the dispossession of a Lesser Other. To libertarians, Lockean—or, rather Hoppean—homesteading is sacrosanct. He who believes he has a right to another man’s property ought to produce proof that he is its rightful owner. “As the old legal adage goes, ‘Possession is nine-tenths of the law,’ as it is the best evidence of legitimate title. The burden of proof rests squarely with the person attempting to relieve another of present property titles.” (Into The Cannibal’s Pot: Lessons for America from Post-Apartheid South Africa, p. 276.)

However, even if we allow that “the tribes and individual Indians had no concept of property,” which McMaken nicely refutes—it doesn’t follow that dispossessing them of their land would have been justified. From the fact that a man or a community of men lacks the intellectual wherewithal or cultural and philosophical framework to conceive of these rights—it doesn’t follow that he has no such rights, or that he has forfeited them. Not if one adheres to the ancient doctrine of natural rights. If American Indians had no attachment to the land, they would not have died defending their territories.

Neither does the fact the First Nations formed communal living arrangements invalidate land ownership claims, as McMaken elucidates. Think of the Kibbutz. Kibbutzim in Israel instantiate the principles of voluntary socialism. As such, they are perfectly fine living arrangements, where leadership is empowered as custodian of the resource and from which members can freely secede. You can’t rob the commune of its assets just because members elect to live communally. …

… READ THE REST. Everyone Has Property Rights, Whether They Know it or Not” is on Mises Wire.

UPDATE (10/12)Facebook Thread.

Those who are unfamiliar with the methods of praxeology and deductive reasoning will twist into pretzels to find fault with this essay. Maybe read the ancients (not the neocons) on natural rights.critiquing neocons on natural rights is a straw man.

UPDATED (12/6): Trump Tax Plan Neither Fair Nor Flat, But Based On Faction & Class Warfare

Business, Debt, Donald Trump, Economy, libertarianism, Private Property, Taxation

Whatever happened to the promise of “reducing tax rates on individuals,” Mr. President? Whatever happened to “lowering tax rates, simplifying the tax system” and overhauling the nation’s tax code? You know, to benefit ALL Americans?

President Donald Trump said Wednesday the emerging Republican tax proposal won’t cut taxes for the wealthy, and they may go up, an assurance that appeared to contradict the plan that his administration and GOP leaders are drafting.

… “The wealthy will be pretty much where they are,” Mr. Trump, a Republican, said. “If we can do that, we’d like it. If they have to go higher, they’ll go higher, frankly.”

Who are the wealthy? Two income families bringing in 100K?

Naturally, “Trump wants to lower the 35% corporate tax rate to 15%, though most analysts think that is nearly impossible.”

Gotta keep the Familia prosperous.

MORE at:

GOP to Release Tax Overhaul as Trump Says Rich Won’t Benefit; Republicans prepare for legislative sprint on a plan they expect would cut taxes for the wealthy.”

House, Senate Tax Proposals Likely to Diverge“:

The document will include a specific corporate tax rate and details on the deductibility of corporate interest, Mr. Mnuchin said at a separate appearance at the same event. He said news reports suggesting the six negotiators are far apart are untrue.

Corporations above all.

SEE FACEBOOK THREAD.

UPDATE (12/6):  Hands off Our Loopholes. Alas, It’s too late.

Real Rightists Have Never Taken The Libertarian Party Seriously

Left-Liberalism, libertarianism, Logic, Old Right

Arguing against the Libertarian Party today, as some libertarians do ponderously, is making a Straw Man Argument, meant to make the arguer seem daring intellectually.

I took a swipe at the Libertarian Party’s two goofballs, Gary Johnson and Bill Weld, for their statism in “Someone Should Tell Bill Kristol Dwarf Tossing Is Cruel.”

Before that, in 2013, some clown reared his head to run for office, so I wrote, “Beware Of Liberals In Libertarian Drag,” to expose how like the Left these lite libertarians were, especially in agitating over identity politics.

Otherwise, move on, nothing here to see. Real Rightists have never taken the Libertarian Party seriously. (As have we never veered from the immigration restrictionist position, despite damnation from a lot of libertarians.)

UPDATE (9/10): It should be obvious:

The Party is a joke. But libertarianism, the paleo kind, is NO joke.

President Trump And The Racism And Anti-Semitism Obsession

Anti-Semitism, Constitution, Donald Trump, libertarianism, Morality, Paleolibertarianism, Race, Racism

A friend—a brilliant scholar of Objectivism—expressed concern over my support (albeit waning support) for Donald Trump. He pointed out in an email that the president was “slowly, but surely, abandoning that outsider stance and was becoming part of the very system he fought against.”

It’s hard to disagree.

However, I had hedged my words in the book, The Trump Revolution, which stands up quite well, since I supported Trump’s “creative destruction” or “process,” more than anything else.

My friend points to Trump sending more troops to Afghanistan (“well, at least he’s committed to no nation-building”). He laments that “it was like pulling teeth to get POTUS to condemn the neo-Nazis in Charlottesville; yes, they had the support of the ACLU, just as they had the support of the ACLU when similar groups marched on Skokie”:

I’d be the first to defend their rights to march. But his initial response seemed so tepid to me; he finally was able to utter the words Obama wouldn’t: “Islamic terrorist”, but he couldn’t seem to utter the phrase “neo-Nazi” in his condemnation of those brown-shirt nutjobs who were chanting “Jews will not replace us” and who thought he wasn’t racist enough because he gave his beautiful daughter to that “bastard Kushner”. The whole thing reminded me of the Nuremberg rallies. …
Now, don’t get me wrong: “Antifa” are not interested in freedom. They are like the Red Stalinists who were for Hitler when Stalin and Hitler were “allies” and then against Hitler when the Nazis invaded the Soviet Union.

But I’m just puzzled that you’re not concerned by this scent of anti-Semitism that keeps emerging from some of Trump’s constituency; it seems like he doesn’t want to come down hard on them because he’s starting to act more and more like a politician: afraid of alienating a group of disaffected and disenfranchised voters who most obviously voted for him, and who he will need in any bid for re-election.

My response to the last is that I’ve never looked to the Leader to utter feel-good moral fatuities. A leader in the American tradition should stick to the Constitution. Moreover, the race meme and its use in American politics sickens me. Seriously, I support people’s right to hate me, even not to serve me. Maybe I
am that radical a propertarian. I want my president to shut up about race and uphold the Constitution, which he has failed miserably to do. I’m a minimalist gal.

My friend goes on to emphasize that he’s “a little puzzled not to have read much in [my] columns about this troubling issue. For me, a lot of it came out of the Bannon wing (despite Bannon’s valuable opposition to the neocons), but for me, there is no love lost with his ouster.”

My reply: I’ve never railed against anti-Semitism. So long as your mitts stop at my face, I don’t care if you hate me qua Jew. Maybe it’s naïve, but … I confess to hating the Left even more than caring about anti-Semitism.”

My friend was sadly right to have feared

that Trump would be absorbed by the very system he opposed, because it’s just in the nature of politics. Now with his amping up of the war in Afghanistan and his tepid responses to Jew haters, I’m extremely concerned. Help me out here.

Like my friend, my concern is more with War and the Deep State. I don’t see Jews becoming targets for more than verbal aggression. I certainly can no longer look up to Trump: His nepotism; his kids in the White House, his wars, no tax reform, no free market in medicine, no wall. All those issues consume me more than his reaction to the words of a fringe group.