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#61 Traktion

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Posted 28 February 2012 - 11:26 PM

Aren't Free Markets concerned solely with personally beneficial agreements? How do you ensure the common interest is protected?


In the example of security, it is a personal issue, so I assume you mean in the broader sense?

Insurance is a good way of protecting yourself against externalities. For example, if you want to pay small premiums on your car insurance, it is your interest to not cause accidents. In turn, this may mean the insurance companies, asking people to stick to suggested speeds, not drink and drive, use mobile phones etc. Therefore, the common interest for people not to drive dangerously, is also the individual's interest to keep their premiums low.

There are many other examples, but where damages have been done, there is a case for compensation to be due.

Additionally, in a free market for justice, there is a human element. The likes of common law were built from the bottom up through judgements and precedence, rather than from the top down via the legislative process. Bottom up law is a free market approach and this inevitably means your actions will be judged by arbitrators and your peers.

Furthermore, with free market justice, any obligation to comply is optional. While not complying to good judgements will see offenders being ostracised*, not complying to bad judgements may lead to little in the way of consequences. This give and take over contracts and agreements would lead to a safety valve, which is missing in our force backed legal system.

If someone decided to ring fence some land and then charge rent for people to use it, this contract may well be ignored by the greater population. In turn, this would lead to arbitrators peddling such decisions to lose respect and influence. Essentially, bad 'law' would be ignored, so if something wasn't in the common interest, it would be rejected.


[* Would you employ a convict? Would you form contracts with people who breaks them? Would you want to associate yourself with people who violate others etc?]


edit: fixed wording

Edited by Traktion, 28 February 2012 - 11:36 PM.

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#62 Traktion

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Posted 28 February 2012 - 11:43 PM

BTW, to add - some people may wonder how contracts would form without state backed law guaranteeing payment. People who run businesses will know that much comes down to trust between regularly trading parties. However, this isn't the only way.

Without contracts enforced by the state, other means of reducing the impact of broken contracts would likely blossom. Third parties which insured contracts may become common place. We know these work, as it is what factoring companies do already - they guarantee the payment to the supplier, then negotiate payment terms with the customer. If the latter doesn't pay, the former still is and it is the job of the factoring company to resolve the problem.

If contracts became more fluid, terms of payment and different factoring/insurance options would become far more important. If you had a reputation for breaking contracts, it would be very hard to get 'contract insurance' (or whatever it would be called), making it difficult for you to trade. Therefore, it is mutually beneficial for contracts not to be broken.
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#63 sigma

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Posted 29 February 2012 - 12:23 AM

Insurance is a good way of protecting yourself against externalities. For example, if you want to pay small premiums on your car insurance, it is your interest to not cause accidents. In turn, this may mean the insurance companies, asking people to stick to suggested speeds, not drink and drive, use mobile phones etc. Therefore, the common interest for people not to drive dangerously, is also the individual's interest to keep their premiums low.

There are many other examples, but where damages are due, there is a case for compensation.

Compensation requires assets of some nature. What is my motivation for allowing others to risk harming me when they cannot "compensate" me for it (poor choice of word I know).

Additionally, in a free market for justice, there is a human element. The likes of common law were built from the bottom up through judgements and precedence, rather than from the top down via the legislative process. Bottom up law is a free market approach and this inevitably means your actions will be judged by arbitrators and your peers.

Justice is then determined by your immediate social group? What mechanism resolves conflicts between groups?

Furthermore, with free market justice, any obligation to comply is optional. While not complying to good judgements will see offenders being ostracised*, not complying to bad judgements may lead to little in the way of consequences. This give and take over contracts and agreements would lead to a safety valve, which is missing in our force backed legal system.

Our legal system already allows varying sentences (and optional prosecution). I'm not sure the idea of optional justice is going to be practical.

If someone decided to ring fence some land and then charge rent for people to use it, this contract may well be ignored by the greater population. In turn, this would lead to arbitrators peddling such decisions to lose respect and influence. Essentially, bad 'law' would be ignored, so if something wasn't in the common interest, it would be rejected.

You might argue the same is true for a state. What is the difference? Presumably at one point we had a free market, then someone ringfenced some land and charged people rent for it. If your system is stable then why wasn't the contract ignored and how do we have a state today?

Would you want to associate yourself with people who violate others etc?

With an optional justice system I'm not sure how I could dis-associate myself from them.

Out of curiosity, do you consider violence to be immoral or amoral?

#64 Traktion

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Posted 29 February 2012 - 01:02 AM

Compensation requires assets of some nature. What is my motivation for allowing others to risk harming me when they cannot "compensate" me for it (poor choice of word I know).


If they couldn't afford compensation, they would likely be ostracised, until such a time as they could afford it (or they were forgiven by the victim or family of the victim).

Justice is then determined by your immediate social group? What mechanism resolves conflicts between groups?


I would liken it to a chain of individual association, rather than many groups. Put another way, every person has overlapping groups, not always contiguous geographically either.

Resolution of conflict could be from free market arbiters, some of whom were regional, others who were national (depending on experience and reputation, I would imagine). They would ultimately be judging two individuals, regardless of their location or grouping, possibly with the support of a jury.

Our legal system already allows varying sentences (and optional prosecution). I'm not sure the idea of optional justice is going to be practical.


It depends how you define optional. Being rejected by society, would leave you very exposed, with no access to arbitration. An outlaw having little in the way of legal rights, would be vulnerable to attacks by the victim too, if the crime was terrible enough.

Voluntary prisons would likely be a good option for people in such positions, where they could work off their debts to their victims, in an insured/secure environment.

You might argue the same is true for a state. What is the difference? Presumably at one point we had a free market, then someone ringfenced some land and charged people rent for it. If your system is stable then why wasn't the contract ignored and how do we have a state today?


You could argue that the state is just a mafia which won and gained monopoly powers over the others. However, that shouldn't give them legitimacy and it doesn't mean it will remain this way indefinitely. The mask of legitimacy appears to be slipping at the moment.

The land used to be common and belong to no one. Who is to say that we are in a transient period where this isn't the case? State granted ownership of land (which could be maintained/managed) is a relatively recent phenomenon, after all, especially in the heavily planned/managed system we have now. For millennia, this was not the case.

We also have communications now, which are horizontal (ie. the Internet), rather than vertical (ie. press, tv, radio etc). The printing press certainly helped maintain a state hierarchy, where the Internet is returning the power to the individual again.

Perhaps the answer to your question, is that history is still being written and the story isn't finished yet. Land which has been taken, may yet be returned. Perhaps this will be written in the next chapter of our social evolution.

With an optional justice system I'm not sure how I could dis-associate myself from them.

Out of curiosity, do you consider violence to be immoral or amoral?


To dis-associate, you wouldn't trade with them, socialise with them, help them etc. If they insisted on attempting to steal your stuff against your will (as in, forced association), self defence (by yourself or a third party on your behalf) may put an end to them if it was unavoidable. However, such situations would surely be best avoided by everyone involved.

I consider violence a last resort. I certainly wouldn't want to associate with people who are violent and I would protect myself against them. I would say most people have a similar feeling, which is why they fear the removal of state protection.

I would also say that whether violence is moral or immoral is beside the point. Nature can certainly be violent, but it can also be cooperative. Ultimately, free association and mutual agreements lead to more prosperity though, so it is in our interests not to be violent.


edit: typo

Edited by Traktion, 29 February 2012 - 01:04 AM.

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#65 Vagabond

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Posted 29 February 2012 - 01:59 AM

Somalia also has shown improvements since it ceased to have a state.

Linky?
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#66 Guest_Control_*

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Posted 29 February 2012 - 08:55 AM

what is that meant to be showing anyone with income of 40K is in the top 1% and anyone with an income of 20K is in the top 10%? its an awful graph


Yes. People on 40k are in the top 1% - in 1975. Years along the x-axis.

#67 Traktion

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Posted 29 February 2012 - 09:17 AM

Linky?


http://rru.worldbank...ova-harford.pdf

http://mises.org/dai...rchy-in-Somalia

http://www.independe.../64_somalia.pdf

Edited by Traktion, 29 February 2012 - 09:26 AM.

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#68 Riedquat

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Posted 29 February 2012 - 10:10 AM

Bottom up law is a free market approach and this inevitably means your actions will be judged by arbitrators and your peers.

Sounds like crowds of peasant waving pitchforks and screaming "Burn the witch!"

#69 Traktion

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Posted 29 February 2012 - 10:58 AM

Sounds like crowds of peasant waving pitchforks and screaming "Burn the witch!"


Science and education have come a long way since the dark ages.
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#70 fluffy666

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Posted 29 February 2012 - 11:05 AM

Sounds like crowds of peasant waving pitchforks and screaming "Burn the witch!"


Don't worry, we'd have a completely voluntary People's Optional Justice Organisation which would make sure that everyone was free from government and the threat of coercion from anyone else..

#71 fluffy666

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Posted 29 February 2012 - 11:06 AM

Science and education have come a long way since the dark ages.


So have political science and philosophy.

#72 Traktion

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Posted 29 February 2012 - 01:20 PM

Don't worry, we'd have a completely voluntary People's Optional Justice Organisation which would make sure that everyone was free from government and the threat of coercion from anyone else..


Why would the government have a different view to the common people? Why should they even?

If a government is supposed to be representative, they should reflect the views of the people.

So have political science and philosophy.


Indeed it has, which is why we are discussing post-state systems.
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#73 fluffy666

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Posted 29 February 2012 - 02:43 PM

Why would the government have a different view to the common people? Why should they even?


So if the view of the majority is that 2+2=5 then the view of the government should be the same?

If a government is supposed to be representative, they should reflect the views of the people.


Yes, but they should also take reality into account.

You seem to succumb to the fallacy of most extreme free-marketeers in assuming that because the price mechanism/market/wisdom of crowds works for a wide range of problems, it will work for all problems. In reality it will fail for problems that have long time horizons (i.e. infrastructure), problems where expert knowledge is required for informed choice (i.e. medicine) and problems of composition/ diffuse externalities (i.e. global warming).

#74 Traktion

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Posted 29 February 2012 - 02:52 PM

So if the view of the majority is that 2+2=5 then the view of the government should be the same?


Why would the majority think that, but a subset called 'the government' think otherwise?

Yes, but they should also take reality into account.

You seem to succumb to the fallacy of most extreme free-marketeers in assuming that because the price mechanism/market/wisdom of crowds works for a wide range of problems, it will work for all problems. In reality it will fail for problems that have long time horizons (i.e. infrastructure), problems where expert knowledge is required for informed choice (i.e. medicine) and problems of composition/ diffuse externalities (i.e. global warming).


A free market is just one without force.

By implying that a free market cannot solve all issues, you are saying that force needs to be wielded, by a subset of the very same people, in order for things to be done.

Why would that subset of people have a different opinion, when they are just people like the rest of us?

Why would that subset enforce their informed choice, rather than suggest it as their informed opinion?
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#75 Riedquat

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Posted 29 February 2012 - 03:03 PM

Science and education have come a long way since the dark ages.

Human nature hasn't.




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