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Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Some Questions For the Comrades

If this country had a libertarian government no legislation or force would impact on any non "mainstream" lifestyle, family arrangement, personal habit or proclivity.

All lifestyles would be permitted as long as in living out your desires, you didn't force another to do anything against his or her will. Everybody would be free to live as a communist, a fascist, a vegan, a flat earther, a wife swapper, a gay leather fetishist, a bible believing Christian, a Zoroastrian, a Satanist, a line dancer, a rock star groupie, a heroin addict, a health food fanatic, a Sumo wrestler or a stamp collector.

Would the same apply under a Workers Party/Socialist Workers/Socialist Party/Communist Party/Communist League etc government?

Could I maintain my business and lifestyle as I do now?
Could I educate my children as I wish?
Could I advocate for free enterprise and against socialism?
Could I join with others to get rid of the Socialist government?
Could I criticise the government, or other individuals or groups I disagree with?

Some comrades have been critical of my concept of and advocacy for a free society.

Let's see what the comrades have to offer freedom lovers in their socialist Utopia.

Cameron, Sonic, Byron, Oliver and co? I'm listening.

22 Comments:

Blogger Sonic said...

I don't see why not, don't get socialism and Stalinism mixed up.

Oh BTW are you any relation to the guy who wrote the post below condeming Grant Morgan for what he is saying?

3:58 PM  
Blogger Berend de Boer said...

The problem though is: would such a society be stable or endure when faced with an external threat?

If you look at how Western Europe is crumbling, you wonder if a society based purely on individuals can or could work? How many people in Europe would be willing to fight for their country?

Of course, history has proven that socialism doesn't work, but that doesn't mean that a society where people have little in common can stand up against external threats.

A collection of individuals doesn't a country make.

But I agree with the premise: a libertarian society is to be preferred above many, many others.

5:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

yes to all except that the build up of exorbitant amounts of wealth would probably be curbed

6:48 PM  
Anonymous squirrel said...

I'm not overly concerned with the form of government, its the people running the country that count not the dogma they espouse. I doubt any libertarian government would be particularly different from any so called "socialist" government.

6:51 PM  
Anonymous Cameron said...

"Would the same apply under a Workers Party/Socialist Workers/Socialist Party/Communist Party/Communist League etc government?
"

Hate to seem like I'm dodging your question Trev but I'm not and never have been a member of any of the above groups. Why should I answer?

7:03 PM  
Blogger libertyscott said...

"except that the build up of exorbitant amounts of wealth would probably be curbed"

in other words he couldn't maintain his business and lifestyle. Exhorbitant in New Zealand is different from exhorbitant in Chelsea, London or exhorbitant in Bamako, Mali.

8:02 PM  
Blogger Trevor Loudon said...

Berend- you've answered your own question. Socialist Europe won't defend herself because she is socialist.

To paraphrase Ayn Rand "no free country ever lacked volunteers to defend her"

There is a seeming paradox here. Socialism encourages self centredness and jealousy and destroys community spirit and social cohesion.

A free society builds human goodwill and benevolence and a sense of nationhood.

Witness the US and Britain in the late 19th and early 2oth centuries.

I advocate a free society which tolerates wacko behaviour, not because I support wacko behaviour, but because to protect the good from the depredations of the state, you must also protect the stupid.

Trust the free market in human behaviour Berend. A truly free society will have far higher moral and ethical standards than our current society does.

8:49 PM  
Blogger Trevor Loudon said...

Cameron-You should have the'nads to answer, because you constantly criticise capitalism and defend socialism, yet pose as a "liberal" How would you or your green/red mates socialise NZ, yet still leave me as free as I am now. I don't see how its possible. Enlighten me. You're clearly a wise man.

8:53 PM  
Anonymous Andrew Davies said...

"Trust the free market in human behaviour Berend. A truly free society will have far higher moral and ethical standards than our current society does."

Spot on Trevor. Not being able to initiate force on others includes not being able to force them into subsidising your lifestyle choices. This means the heroin addict can do what he likes without expecting others to give him\her the dole, health care etc, a strong incentive not to do heroin. If the state is not going to step in and prop up bad lifestyles then the incentive is to be responsible. It also means alternative support mechanisms (family, voluntary community groups etc) would be valued and strengthened, education and employment opportunities appreciated and criminal activity significantly reduced.

I recently spoke with a head master of a school that took in those no other school would have. He told me of a very talented (academic, music and sport) 18 year old who had a chronic attitude problem and was impossible to work with. I asked him if a 2 year time limit on welfare availability might change the boy's attitude. The teachers jaw dropped and all he could say was that such a system would mean his school would not need to exist.

Incentives shape behaviour without forcing it. If we want a cohesive society with the guts to defend our shores we need to change the incentives.

Andrew Davies

9:32 PM  
Anonymous Byron the commie said...

I'll give a few quick answers, but will point out these are just my own thoughts and not Workers Party policy, we don't sit round planning what the worlds going to look like after the revolution, but it is interesting to think about, so I can say a few words about what I expect.

Could I maintain my business and lifestyle as I do now?

I'll answer those two things seperatly: Business, depends on what your business is, are you self employed or do you have employees? if you have employees then at the least they would have the unrestricted right to strike (this has been a Workers Party policy in the last election) But that would be the same under a libertarian government wouldn't it? no big state interfering with peoplss freedom of movement and association.
Lifestyle: I'll have to guess at your lifestyle, I'd say its something along the lines of home in suburban Christchurch, possibly a familly, three good meals a day, access to entertainment? of course you can maintain that lifestyle, socialism is about material abundance, everyone could have that lifestyle.

Could I educate my children as I wish?

Of course, why not? difference is education will be free, right up through university, and will be available to everyone. I do think that the change in the material conditions of society is going to change the way we think about education, learning and teaching, but we won't see how untill it happens.

Could I advocate for free enterprise and against socialism? Of course. (see next question)

Could I join with others to get rid of the Socialist government? again, of course. The thing is, socialism comes about through popular revolution, meaning that the vast majority of people will want socialism, so a group of people going against it isn't going to make a lot of difference.

Could I criticise the government, or other individuals or groups I disagree with?
Again, of course, spread the word to anyone who will listen.

12:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Trevor, I have a question for you and I apologise that it is off-topic. Where does animal welare fit into the ACT ideology? Is ACT perfectly happy with a) factory farming (sow crates and battery cages) and vivisection?

I admire many of ACT's core policies but my wish for animals to be free of pain and suffering would put me at odds with ACT, it would seem.

5:39 PM  
Blogger libertyscott said...

"socialism is about material abundance, everyone could have that lifestyle"

Stop me from choking from laughter - those hundreds of thousands of North Koreans that resorted to eating bark and cannibalism were obviously just enjoying a change in menu under the material abundance of socialism.

9:15 PM  
Anonymous Andrew Davies said...

Could I educate my children as I wish?

Byron teh Commie wrote

"Of course, why not? difference is education will be free, right up through university, and will be available to everyone. I do think that the change in the material conditions of society is going to change the way we think about education, learning and teaching, but we won't see how until it happens."

Except that the only schools will be state run madrassas teaching the religion of wishy washy, anything goes liberalism (as opposed to Classical Liberalism). There would be no alternative and therefore no freedom.
Come to think of it, that is virtually (but not quite) the situation now. private schools

9:47 PM  
Blogger andrewfalloon said...

Anon,
There is a market solution. Let demand drive supply. If people are against battery hens they will choose to buy free range eggs (as I do). The more people who do this, the more pressure will go on producers to supply free range eggs and less battery hen eggs.

As for sow crates, there are two quite separate issues here. Firstly, farrowing crates. These are often wrongly lumped in with sow crates when activists are campaigning against them, they are quite different. Farrowing crates are used for a short period of time (usually a few days) before birth and a few weeks afterward (prior to weaning). Farrowing crates are necessary to prevent a sow rolling on piglets and crushing them. So, while they are not ideal, they are in fact there for the welfare of pigs.

Sow crates on the other hand are usually used for a greater length of time, and not exclusively for birthing. Personally, I see limited benefit in them and as such our farms do not use them. In fact the use of sow crates can have a quite detrimental effect on the quality of meat the farm produces. For this reason many farms don't use them, quite simply, farmers want good quality meat to sell. This in itself is providing a market solution. Market forces could be intensified on farmers using sow crates by consumers demanding meat produced on farms without sow crates, in a similar way to how consumers can do with battery eggs vs free range eggs.

By the way, i'm actually not too sure of ACT's policy, but that is the view of an ACT member and pigfarmer :)

Does that help at all??

8:55 AM  
Blogger Trevor Loudon said...

On the vivisection issue, ACT has no formal policy.

The best I can offer is my opinion.

To me, using animals in any humane way to further human welfare is acceptable and indeed desirable.

The emphasis must be on the humane. It is appropriate to have laws against inhumane treatment.

I also agree with Andrew that the free market, by increasing consumer affluence, awareness and choice will see more and more people refusing to accept practices like battery hen farming, use of vivisection in cosmetic manufacture etc.

4:02 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Both reasonable contributions. Thanks for the input.

8:27 PM  
Anonymous Cameron said...

Could I maintain my business and lifestyle as I do now?

Yes of course unless your business was making nuclear weapons or child porn or something bad that is generally considered bad.

Could I educate my children as I wish?

Of course but don't come whining to me when they can't get into university because of their crappy home school education isn't recongnised.

Could I advocate for free enterprise and against socialism?

Yes defintely. I would actually go further and allow the ACT Party to have taxpayer money to pay for billboards and other election propaganda.

Could I join with others to get rid of the Socialist government?

Most certainly. We would encourage it. Our govt needs an enemy to rage against to give us support (hehe).

Could I criticise the government, or other individuals or groups I disagree with?

Yes. In fact there would be more freedom of speech, as the Cameron govt would get rid of the Sedition laws that poor Tim Selwyn got nabbed under. We would also get rid of the part in the Crimes Act about blasphemous libel.

1:36 PM  
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1:10 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Neurolinguistic Programming

In the early 1970s in America Richard Bandler, then a young college student studied the work of Fritz Perls and later Virginia Satir and found that he could reproduce their high-level therapy skills to a degree that even surprised him. Bandler seemed to have a natural ability to mimic (model) the language patterns by Virginia and Fritz.

At the University of California at Santa Cruz, Bandler who was well versed in the teachings of patterns in mathematics and computers teamed up with a college professor, John Grinder to help him understand the processes that were at work. Soon Bandler and Grinder, who used what he knew about patterns in linguistics, created a new model for personal growth called NeuroLinguistic Programming.

Bandler and Grinder had set out to model the hypnotic skills of Milton Erickson. They had astounding results. They built a communication model about human "thinking" and "processing" and used that model of how we see images, hear sounds, reproduces smells and tactile experiences in our mind to track and model the structure of subjective experiences.

Sounds very complicated but really it works very simply. Here is an example as used by Paul McKenna - probably the best & most successful hypnotist in the world.

Close your eyes and think of a negative memory. Become involved in the situation as best as you can. Feel the emotions that you felt, see the things you saw and hear the things you heard.

Now take that memory and project it onto a mental screen seeing yourself in the picture. Put a frame around the picture and view it as if it is an old photograph. Next drain all the colour from the picture and shrink the screen to the size of a matchbox.

Have the feelings associated with the picture decreased in any way?

Another good example of NLP involves Anchors. Have you ever smelt a certain perfume or aftershave and had it remind you of a certain person or situation? Gone to a certain place that brings feelings long forgotten flooding back? Or been in any situation that creates emotional responses that would not normally be associated with it? Well if you can answer yes to any of these then you have experienced anchors. Some anchors are associated with positive feelings and some with negative emotions. However, you should be aware that anchors can be consciously installed or already existing ones altered. Here is an example:

Think of a time when you were really happy. If you can't think of one then imagine something that would make you feel really happy. See what you would see, hear what you would hear and feel what you would feel. Really get into the picture and try to experience it as though it were happening now.

Now brighten the colours and make them richer. Increase the volume. Make the picture bigger, brighter, louder. That's it and more and more....

Now press your first finger against your thumb and fully experience your happy feelings. Do this everyday for 2 weeks and you will create an anchor that will instantly recreate these feelings. Whenever you want to feel like that again just press your thumb and first finger together and wham the feelings will come flooding back! Don't believe me? Just try it and see!!! personal development

12:34 AM  
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