Thursday, November 19, 2009

Why do Libertarians need Natural Rights?

Libertarians will talk about "Natural Rights" until they are blue in the face.
My question/comment:

Umpire MeetingImage via Wikipedia

The Government/Slavery Analogy, Arnold Kling | EconLog | Library of Economics and Liberty: "

Why does *anyone* need to umpire disputes? Life is not fair, and the concept of 'fairness' was invented by those who desired for the power of the umpire.

That is the most confusing thing to me about libertarians. Why the need for a third party to enforce contracts? 4 billion years of life without the need of an umpire, then, less than 10,000 years ago, some umpires talked themselves into a job and never left. And they guard their position jealously.

I am supposed to be grateful to these umpires for the lack of anarchy around my person, ignoring the fact that I have exactly as much anarchy around my person as I can stand to tolerate. I don't remember any useful order around my person that I didn't have to work and plan for, at great cost to my own leisure.


Tower RecordsImage via Wikipedia

Once bought a book at Tower Records (back when there *was* a Tower Records) titled _The Myth of Natural Rights_. [ The Myth of Natural Rights and Other Essays - L.A. Rollins ].
The essay/book asked valid questions: why would anyone care about Natural Rights, and could any inalienable Rights provided by Nature be of practical interest? L.A. Rollins is Holocaust denier, or some kind of Holocaust provocateur. (Ugh, how I hate people who are glib about hot-button issues. Who the hell has the time to ape skeptical poses to gain hostile attention? I wish they could have been adequately breast-fed as infants, so their psychological lack wouldn't be pressed upon society, as imbecile gurgling of would-be controversies.) I read it, it made a valid argument, but I cannot endorse the anything else the man may have written.

Diogenes sitting in his tub.Image via Wikipedia

Live your life like Diogenes the Cynic, or accept the consequences - your choice. There are no Natural Rights to ensure your good results in life. (I love this picture of Diogenes in his tub, surrounded by dogs.) [Edit] My snarky comment got an emotional, but honest, reply:
Rajeev writes: Manuelg, how many countries in South America, Asia, and Africa have you lived in? Better yet, have you lived in any of the inner cities of the US? Have you been bullied in kindergarten? I live in South Asia, and I can assure you that you have inherited, not created, most of the useful order around your person. If you lived in some parts here, you would quickly find you need an umpire, or suffer severe physical violence. Posted November 19, 2009 10:18 PM
My reply back:
> If you lived in some parts here, you would quickly find you need an umpire, or suffer severe physical violence. How shall I distinguish these helpful umpires from the other potential bullies? Hold out hope that whomever isn't assaulting me physically - at just that very moment - is in fact a well disguised blessed umpire with only my best interests at heart? I do not possess infinite stores of credulity. I see stationary bandits exacting protection monies from those under threat from roving bandits. The monies seem to be enough - I will deny them my gratitude.

Allegory (aka The Triumph of Justice), Oil on ...Image via Wikipedia

[ I maintain this extreme position as an intellectual exercise. Only to remind myself what I must give up when I _choose_ not to live my life like Diogenes the Cynic - in a gutter, living off of wild onions, with wild dogs. I cast no judgment on a man who chooses to be grateful to the agents of justice and equity, even though I, personally, am cynical. Cheers. ]
This is my newly learned argumentative technique of backing off my extreme positions at the end of a communication. I have heard the people in my life call me crazy so many thousand times, it finally sank in. As a human, I cannot support my most extreme positions in the face of other humans who are earnestly opposed. [ Why the question of being bullied in kindergarten? Are libertarians predominately victims of bullying, who still feel the sting of that past bullying? I guess it is a way to form intellectually something constructive from the experience. As a response, I cannot find must to recommend it, though. Does it lead to less anxiety and more positive outcomes? As opposed to assuming the lion share of a human's potential positive outcomes will come from self-mastery from inside that human. ]
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