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Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Trifecta!

A recent post on Bookworm Room blog  pointed to post elsewhere and raised the reparations question. The real gem was an additional link to a truly outstanding post on the Wolf Howling blog titled: The Roots of Slavery & The Race Hustlers' Holy Grail - Reparations.  The three primary topics addressed are the race hustling industry and reparations, the history of slavery, and how this reflects on human nature and power.  It's worth reading the whole post.  (Video on the post as well.)



Prof. Henry L. Gates, a Prof. of African American Studies at Harvard and late of Beer Summit fame, is chasing the Holy Grail of the race-hustling industry – reparations for slavery.Prof. Gates has no problem “parcelling out the blame” for slavery on this side of the Atlantic. It is, he tells us, the “whites.” So under Gates's theory, if you are a white American, you are born with the sin of slavery hung about your neck. What troubles Gates is the fact that the historical record shows that the people on the supply side of the African slave trade – the people selling African slaves into bondage - were not the evil white skinned devils, but rather black Africans themselves.  
 
The issue is not divisive at all. It's ludicrous. Those who took part in slavery in America are long dead. It is a fundamental aspect of our legal system that people are held responsible for the wrongs they personally commit; responsibility for those wrongs does not follow down blood lines. But, as Prof. Gates would have us, let us leave that fundamental issue aside. Even so, over 145 years having past since the end of slavery in America, there are a host of issues associated with who should owe what to whom such that every aspect of Gate's call for reparations passes into the surreal. Obama himself perfectly encapsulates some of this. 
 
Slavery didn't begin with the African slave trade. To the contrary, slavery, as an accepted practice in the world, ended with the African slave trade. Slavery began with the dawn of civilization and it has involved virtually every race. Indeed, unless Gates is historically illiterate, he must know that slave based agrarian economies have been the norm throughout much of the world's history.

And of then there are the world's most prolific slavers of history – the Arabs. Indeed,the Arabs in Saudi Arabia still teach today that it is permissible to make slaves of non-Muslims. And indeed, they still practice what they preach - enslaving blacks in Mali when it fell under al Qaeda rule. Under the Gates theory, we should all be getting reparation checks from Ridyah. 
The bottom line, if slavery is, as Gates posits, an original sin that passes not only through the generations, but also among entire races, then it hangs around the necks of most people in the world today - including President Obama and Prof. Gates. Obviously that can't be right. That doesn't fit the Gate's narrative at all. 
  
The only way Prof. Gates call for reparations can have even a patina of legitimacy is if it holds culpable only the descendants of those who actually owned slaves and supported the institution of slavery. Fortunately, they are identifiable. The slave owning class in pre-Civil War America and the supporters of slavery as an institution were all to be found in the Democrat Party. It is beyond perverse for Gates, on this historic record, to also seek to hold culpable the Republicans who never supported slavery and whose ancestor's gave their very lives to end slavery. Do you think an Executive Order condemning the Democrat Party for slavery in America and ordering them to pay the reparations per a special levy would satisfy Dr. Gates? I for one could be persuaded to accept that as a reasonable settlement of the problem. 
 
Gates's push for reparations has more holes than a block of Swiss cheese. If he wanted to actually do something constructive for blacks in America, then Gates would be shouting to the rafters about the call of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. for a color blind society. That is certainly in the best interests of both blacks and our nation. Yet instead of focusing on furthering that cause, Gates is pursuing an issue that is sure to, by its very nature, drive whites and blacks apart. 
I am sure Dr. Gates is not so dumb as to be ignorant of any of the above. Nor can he be ignorant of the fact that the descendants of slaves in this country have, today, all of the opportunities of America open to them. No one, Prof. Gates included, could possibly believe that the call for reparations will add anything to that. 
Actually, given that Prof. Gates's wants to apportion blame to all "whites" in America for slavery, it would seem self-evident that the purpose of Dr. Gate's push for reparations is to foster a permanent sense of guilt in the white population of America on one hand and, on the other hand, to separate blacks from whites in society by keeping blacks focused on past sins. That has nothing to do with justice and everything to do with politics. It is naught but a variant on the sermons of Rev. Jeremiah Wright, damning America and calling for blacks to eschew the values of "white" America. 
More specifically, this is the “sins and grievances” approach to politics about which Thomas Sowell recently wrote in his brilliant four-part essay, Race and Politics. It directs blacks and other members of 'victim classes' to “nurse their resentments, instead of advancing their skills and their prospects.” As Dr. Sowell notes, the only beneficiaries of this type of grievance politics “are politicians and race hustlers.” The losers in this equation are those blacks ignoring their opportunities and the reality of America in 2010 and instead, following the ilk of Prof. Gates on the hunt for the race hustlers' holy grail.


The post then continues with an update that draws upon a different article by Dr. Sowell:

. . . Slavery is a classic example. The history of slavery across the centuries and in many countries around the world is a painful history to read — not only in terms of how slaves have been treated, but because of what that says about the whole human species — because slaves and enslavers alike have been of every race, religion, and nationality. 
If the history of slavery ought to teach us anything, it is that human beings cannot be trusted with unbridled power over other human beings — no matter what color or creed any of them are. The history of ancient despotism and modern totalitarianism practically shouts that same message from the blood-stained pages of history. 
But that is not the message that is being taught in our schools and colleges, or dramatized on television and in the movies. The message that is pounded home again and again is that white people enslaved black people.If American society and Western civilization are different from other societies and civilizations, it is in that they eventually turned against slavery, and stamped it out, at a time when non-Western societies around the world were still maintaining slavery and resisting Western pressures to end slavery — including, in some cases, by armed resistance. 
Only the fact that the West had more firepower put an end to slavery in many non-Western societies during the age of Western imperialism. Yet today there are Americans who have gone to Africa to apologize for slavery — on a continent where slavery has still not been completely ended, to this very moment. 
It is not just the history of slavery that gets distorted beyond recognition by the selective filtering of facts. Those who mine history in order to find everything they can to undermine American society or Western civilization have very little interest in the Bataan death march, the atrocities of the Ottoman Empire, or similar atrocities in other times and places.
Those who mine history for sins are not searching for truth but for opportunities to denigrate their own society, or for grievances that can be cashed in today at the expense of people who were not even born when the sins of the past were committed.
The politics of grievance and division and a grossly distorted version of history are meant to undermine a free society, not to promote incremental improvement.

I think this is a terrific example of how the internet allows people to share their efforts to be more knowledgeable and aware.

Thanks GW at Wolf Howling.

44 comments:

Annoying Old Guy said...

We're raising a generation which will think slavery was purely an American phenomenon, a sin unique to our nation. Can I question the patriotism and honesty of the academics who made this happen? And Clovis, if you want another example of things done by business I don't like that have their roots in academia, this is an excellent example.

Bret said...

aog,

Not just one generation. Growing up, other than the jewish exposure to Pharaoh's enslavement all those millennia ago, American slavery was pretty much all I ever learned about in school too.

On the other hand, slavery within a relative wealthy country has a much different flavor, in my opinion, than most ancient and even recent slavery in hand-to-mouth-existence countries. In other words, being a slave in a time and place where you could (potentially) be much better off is different than being a slave in a time and place where you're gonna live a hand-to-mouth, barely survive sort of existance.

Clovis e Adri said...

I am scratching my head with your comment, Bret.

When was slavery practiced in a "relative wealthy" country? It looks to me slavery ended in America before its riches were so great that even slaves had a good life.

Or are you back to Libertarian-speak, talking about the here and now, implying the modern life is some sort of slavery too?

Clovis e Adri said...

May I offer that your History classes in school look, as far as I can tell from your comments above, really bad?

Ours usually discussed (at least in my time) much of the slave trade, and even entered into details on the composition of slaves - as how the Spanish were more effective in slavering indigenous people, while we were more inclined to buying Africans.

I really have a hard time believing that you guys stop studying slavery only in your own country.

So as the lore here says that Latin Americans like to trash the US, know this: At least in Brazilian schools, the kids learn about how the US was a shinning example to follow on this matter. Really.

Annoying Old Guy said...

May I offer that your History classes in school look, as far as I can tell from your comments above, really bad?

Yes. This is by design. The MAL can't win politically among a citizenry that knows and understands history, so the only reasonable thing to do is wipe that out.

When was slavery practiced in a "relative wealthy" country?

The USA became a relatively wealthy nation well before the Civil War. But if that doesn't suffice, what about Rome? Qin dynasty China? The Zulu Empire?

Clovis e Adri said...

AOG,

---
The USA became a relatively wealthy nation well before the Civil War.
---
True, but to say their slaves were having a better life than a hand-to-mouth existence by then is the kind of affirmation thatasks for very good evidence. Which I honestly don't think you can provide for.

---
But if that doesn't suffice, what about Rome? Qin dynasty China? The Zulu Empire?
---
If that was intended as joke, it worked out. LOL.

Bret said...

Clovis wrote: "...to say their slaves were having a better life than a hand-to-mouth existence by then..."

The point is by then NON-slaves were starting to have a better than hand-to-mouth existence. Before that, non-slave farmers were quite poor too. The potential gap between slave and non-slave widened.

Bret said...

Clovis wrote: "May I offer that your History classes in school look ... really bad?"

aog responds: "This is by design."

Ah, well, yes and no. Yes, because this is america, and as as result, we focus on american history, and within the context of american history, american slavery is a really big deal. It's the one really big zit on the otherwise pretty pristine complexion of the american experiment. But that is true, in my opinion, whether or not the MAL makes use of it for political purposes.

Annoying Old Guy said...

Clovis;

to say their slaves were having a better life than a hand-to-mouth existence by then

I didn't say or write that so I fail to see your point. You had a question, I quoted it and I provided specific answers, to which you replied with an ad hominem. Perhaps I should try that same approach to any of your claims.

P.S. Still waiting on substantiation of your claim of protectionaist measures in the 2008/2009 time frame. Although, if that was intended as a joke, haha.

Annoying Old Guy said...

Bret;

I do not object to a focus on slavery in the USA, but on presentations that completely omit any comparison thereby creating the impression of slavery being a *uniquely* American zit, as opposed to the normal state of society until the mid 1800s.

Clovis e Adri said...

AOG,

You miss the point twice. First by not realizing it is relative richness combined with a better than hand-to-mouth existence (you only see the first). Further, you interpret relative as in "relative to other places at the same time", which is non-sense for the matter in question. "Relative" here needs to be more like "relative to some minimum standard of material abundance".


On my claim on protectionism, I didn't see you refuting the ones I already gave you. As I understand it, I told you "look, there is protectionism, hence where is the free market?", to which you replied "Oh, yes, there is and I do not necessarily agree with it, but Free Markets!".

Annoying Old Guy said...

Clovis;

That wasn't in your question, I can only go by what you wrote, not what you think you implied.

you interpret relative as in "relative to other places at the same time", which is non-sense for the matter in question

On the contrary, I think it the only reasonable interpretation of that phrase.

I didn't see you refuting the ones I already gave you

I did. Here is what you wrote - "by the onset of the 2008/9 crisis, I do remember the US took quite some protectionist measures. I wonder, where were all its free marketeers by then?". I pointed out this is wrong because (1) those started long before 2008/2009 and (2) I protested them during the time they were in force, if not necessarily in your precise but irrelevant time frame. What I asked for were examples of such measures implemented in that time frame, which you have failed to provide. One might think you just made that up to score rhetorical points.

Harry Eagar said...

'When was slavery practiced in a "relative wealthy" country?'

Germany, up to 1945.

I cry bitter tears for Bret and Guy, who got through school without learning anything about history. Sad.

Up until the 1960s, American schools generally taught that American slavery was actually pretty good for the slaves, a legacy of what the professional historians call the 'Progressive' school (Beard, Phillips etc.) (which I suppose I should waste my breath by saying has nothing to do with what Bret and Guy like to label Progressivism today).

Sigh.

I went to Catholic schools and we certainly heard plenty about slavery in communist countries (and twice on Sunday), and also about how all the people in India were Christians, although oddly nothing about slaves traded by Catholics.

You know, I've never heard a rightwinger complain about the absolute idiocy and dishonesty of the way history was taught to American children during the fond, faroff days of McCarthy.

Annoying Old Guy said...

I cry bitter tears for Bret and Guy, who got through school without learning anything about history

When you can't argue using facts, switch to vague ad hominems.

what Bret and Guy like to label Progressivism today

Actually I don't like to label any "Progressive" because the term has been corrupted. I use "MAL" or "tranzi" instead. But are mere facts against Eagar's ad hominem?

As for learning history, a review of President Woodrow Wilson would be instructive for him and any one else interested in what "Progressive" as a political label meant. As far as I can tell, there's no break between that and the MAL today.

erp said...

As someone who also went to Catholic school (1940-48), may I testify that we were indeed taught about slavery in the south -- even in fact, that Africans like Obama’s Luo tribe sold their fellows to Arab slave traders who sold them at the slave markets in England and how we went to war to end it (I don't agree that was the reason, but I won't quibble because that isn't today's lesson). We also learned about carpetbaggers and how the indigenous southern whites all of whom were Democrats made life miserable for former slaves many of whom migrated north and made lives for themselves and on and on.

We were also taught about the westward expansion and about the various Indian tribes, some of which were peaceful and some of which weren't and which were which. We also learned that Indian lands were taken, treaties broken, but we also learned that the U.S. for all our faults was the land of opportunity for people who wanted to live in a freedom unthinkable almost anywhere else in the world.

We can’t change the past and none of us living today had anything to do with any of the above, so the left’s constant chattering about it is only to enflame the passions of those who were no more affected by the slavery of their ancestors 150 years ago than I am because my ancestors were enslaved by the Turks.

In re: Progressive. Think newspeak/doublespeak. The left appropriates words. My favorite is “discriminating” - formally a positive attribute as in “One has discriminating tastes in foods, etc., which was made over to mean vile racism and “liberal” formerly a positive term which characterized our founding fathers’ philosophy reduced by the left to blatant 20th century socialism.

Harry Eagar said...

'As far as I can tell, there's no break between that and the MAL today.'

Like I say, you didn't learn history. It's evident, saying so is not an ad hominem attack. Just an observation.

I had a great uncle who made a more than comfortable living writing American history books that taught how swell it was for the slaves. Like I say, it would be hard to find a rightwinger who attacks his books.

erp said...

Harry, too bad you didn't have a relative who taught the English language, with an emphasis on grammar.

Annoying Old Guy said...

It's ad hominem when you provide no evidence or counter-example, just assertions. Whatever.

Speaking of that, here's an article from Robert Nozick, a rather well respected author, using "capitalism" and "free markets" ("market society") interchangeably.

But a capitalist society does not satisfy
the principle of distribution "to each
according to his merit or value." Apart from
the gifts, inheritances, and gambling winnings
that occur in a free society, the market
distributes to those who satisfy the perceived
market-expressed demands of others, and
how much it so distributes depends on
how much is demanded and how great the
alternative supply is

Annoying Old Guy said...

And, oh, there's Milton Friedman doing the same thing. Almost as if someone were just making stuff up and then claiming the other person was ignorant when they disagree to cover that up.

Clovis e Adri said...

AOG,

I am not linking to this due to general agreement with his philosophy, but to exemplify how your equating of free market with capitalism in real life is not granted.

Please also notice the difference in Milton Friedman's views of capitalism as it should be and as it actually is.


---
What I asked for were examples of such measures implemented in that time frame, which you have failed to provide. One might think you just made that up to score rhetorical points.
---
Or one might think you are too lazy to do your own homework. It is supposed do be
*your* country, isn't it?

I'll list eight cases:

1) American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, “Buy American” provisions.
2) Chinese tires case.
3) Solar Panel Tariff reclassification.
4) Employ American Workers Act.
5) Mexican Truck access.
6) Chinese Poultry Import Ban.
7) Dairy Export Incentive Program.
8) General Motors and Chrysler Financial Support.

If you need more, take a look at figure 5 here, where they account for 52 US restrictive measures since 2008.

Gosh, if you keep up that way you can even beat Brazil someday (55 such measures in the period). And, you know, we are known for being very prolix at that matter.

Annoying Old Guy said...

Clovis;

linking free market with capitalism in real life

I didn't make that claim. I said the terms were commonly used interchangeably.

one might think you are too lazy to do your own homework

Your claim, your homework. Seriously, you think *I* should do the legwork to provide evidence for *your* claims?

As for your list, I specifically opposed 1, 3, 7, 8. I oppose all of them in general (except 6, there's an actual case for that one), but I can't protest everything that's anti free market, I would do nothing else and still not succeed.

Clovis e Adri said...

AOG,

My claim was based on things that were public knowledge for anyone reading basic economic news. It surprises me that I need to make such a list for a self claimed free marketeer, for at some point at that time frame, the rise of protectionist measures was an often discussed subject.

As for your answer, there we see it again from you: 'Oh, yes, there is protectionism and I do not necessarily agree with it, but Free Markets!'.

Therefore I rest my case.

Annoying Old Guy said...

What, exactly, is your case? That I didn't issue an executive order over turning those protectionist measures?

Clovis e Adri said...

Basically, that you hide behind a concept not practiced in real life.

Clovis e Adri said...

Sorry, my link above failed. It was to be this.

Annoying Old Guy said...

In what am I hiding? What is it I am hiding? I have philosophical and policy positions based on that, which I enunciate. What is hidden?

Annoying Old Guy said...

In what way am I hiding? Or, what is it I am hiding? I have philosophical viewpoints and policy positions based on those, which I enunciate. What is hidden?

Annoying Old Guy said...

Clovis;

To quote the lead of your link, "It’s pretty much standard for the chattering classes — both liberal and conservative — to refer to something called “our free market system,” also known as “free market capitalism.”".

Which seems to be exactly my claim on the common usage of that terminology. There's also which does the same from a Marxist point of view. So, yeah, they all agree with me. Your point is...?

Clovis e Adri said...

... the rest of that same link, where he argues how not free the system actually is.

I said it before: given that you often make fun of progressive doublespeaking, why do you indulge yourself in that practice too?

Annoying Old Guy said...

I don't. I define my terms and show that I use them in commonly accepted ways. Do you tell mathematicians their transfinite theorems are "doublespeak" because such things don't exist in reality?

Clovis e Adri said...

AOG,

You rather miss the point by your exemple on mathematicians.

You do not use your terms in "commonly accepted ways". On the contrary, you use terms yourself (AFAIK) invented, like "MAL" or "logorealist", or little used ones, like "tranzis".

Given the special attention you look to have to the terms and definitions you use, I am particularly curious on why you call free something which isn't. Really, I would hardly ask this question to anyone else.

Up to this point, you evaded my question asking for examples - and I gave a few. So back to my question, you either believe you live in a free market or you look to be so cautious about word and meanings only when a progressive utters them.


And more from a personal point of view, I also really don't get when people think a market is free or not. Erp often said here that the only LA country with a free market is Chile. I've been there, and I can't get what's her point. What level of taxation and paperwork should define a market as free? For some level exists in every place, and in some areas it can be a really high level even in the US.

Annoying Old Guy said...

Clovis;

If I invented the terms, then I define common usage, because obviously you cannot cite contrary usage. Just like a mathematician invents terms to precisely describe what he is talking about.

Doublespeak, and what I complain about, is using an already existing term to mean something other than the common definition. E.g. Eagar using "capitalism", a very common term, to mean something utterly different from everyone else.

I am particularly curious on why you call free something which isn't

Because that's the standard term for it, which I use in the common way.

So back to my question

Quite. What was it again - "by the onset of the 2008/9 crisis, I do remember the US took quite some protectionist measures. I wonder, where were all its free marketeers by then?". I answered, "complaining about them". You seem to hold me responsible for not preventing them, but I never claimed that ability.

I also really don't get when people think a market is free or not

What about the analogous "free society"? Do you think a society is either free or not? That it is anarchy or totalitarian? If not, could "free market" have a similar nuance?

Clovis e Adri said...

AOG,

---
Just like a mathematician invents terms to precisely describe what he is talking about.
---
That's very different. Mathematics can be built upon axioms and more well defined terms and norms than anything of the social sphere we live in.

---
Doublespeak, and what I complain about, is using an already existing term to mean something other than the common definition.
---
Yes, hence my issue with the word "free" in "free markets".

---
You seem to hold me responsible for not preventing them, but I never claimed that ability.
---
I only asked if you took notice of them as protectionist (i.e. anti-free) measures by then.


---
What about the analogous "free society"? Do you think a society is either free or not? That it is anarchy or totalitarian? If not, could "free market" have a similar nuance?
---
It is equally messy. If you want to see "free markets" or "free society" as a spectrum, it is an odd choice to name it by one of the very extreme points of that spectrum. If would be equally valid to call them "slave markets" or "slave society" by the same logic.

As far as I can tell, the most free societies I know are indigenous ones, and I doubt anyone thinks of them when using that term.

I remember my first contact, in the English language, with the expression "free world" to describe what I'd call the "developed world". I thought not only it was an ill defined term, but also that people who use it may be lacking in perspective. I certainly felt myself far less free when living in Germany, a member of that free world, than in my crazy homeland.

erp said...

Clovis, Free World merely was the phrase used to differentiate the part of the world not part of the totalitarian communist world.

Clovis e Adri said...

By the way, that's an interesting article where we can see the wheels and deals behind this "free market" system at work, related to this TPP thingy.

Disguised in the language of free trade, that's actually all about less freedom and more patent and intellectual property enforcenment - IOW, establishing more govt-induced corporate monopoly.

I wonder how much freedom-loving Libertarians like our friends here can uncritically take this. Or cynicism rules all and ideology stops at self-interest?

Annoying Old Guy said...

Clovis;

That's very different.

Not really. Clearly it's not going to work as well as with mathematics, but increased rigor is a good thing. Again, though, you seem to be hung up on a false dichotomy, where something is perfect or it is useless. I take a more continuous view of tools like this.

Yes, hence my issue with the word "free" in "free markets".

Ah, there's the Morton's Fork. If I use the standard term, it's double speak for this reason. If I don't use the term it's double speak for not using the standard term.

If you've got a problem with the term, take it up with the people who defined it.

I only asked if you took notice of them as protectionist (i.e. anti-free) measures by then

Originally, until you moved the goalposts with comments like "Basically, that you hide behind a concept not practiced in real life".

I noticed some, but the government here generates such a blizzard of protectionist measures I can't keep up with all of them.

the most free societies I know are indigenous ones

As far as I can see, indigenous societies tend to be very unfree, almost tribal in their restrictions on members of that society.

Annoying Old Guy said...

An article from Vox? Really? Those people can only hope to achieve the intellectual and objectivity of Fox News.

In any case things are far more nuanced than that article discusses. For instance, intellectual property. Our dear Mr. Eagar has gone on at some length in the past about how weakening intellectual property rights is a corporate plot (and I don't think he's coming from a libertarian point of view). Now strengthening them is also a corporate plot?

But the main case in the article is very flawed - if those trade agreements are so terrible, why not just drop out of them? Could it be that, on the whole, they create trade that is freer? Or are you hung up on yet another false dichotomy of perfection vs. uselessness? But there's another Morton's Fork - if I support such agreements then I'm a cynic, but if I don't then I'm hiding behind a concept instead of engaging the real world.

Note also that libertarian thought places a very high value on contracts, and such treaties are effectively contracts between nations.

Clovis e Adri said...

AOG,

---
Originally, until you moved the goalposts with comments like "Basically, that you hide behind a concept not practiced in real life".
---
That's not moving the goalposts of a former question, that's a separate affirmation altogether.

I think you often judge criticism towards capitalism based on the idealization you have of it, not on its actual incarnation out there.

---
As far as I can see, indigenous societies tend to be very unfree, almost tribal in their restrictions on members of that society.
---
Maybe you haven't seen enough of them.

---
Could it be that, on the whole, they create trade that is freer?
---
Depends on what you mean by "freer". If you end up having more itens being traded between A and B, at the expense of the people in A and B having less freedoms - is it a freer trade?

I understand you object excessive regulation in your own society because it makes the economic agents less free. If you now create excessive regulation that is common to two different societies, can it happen that its agents become now more free?

---
But there's another Morton's Fork - if I support such agreements then I'm a cynic, but if I don't then I'm hiding behind a concept instead of engaging the real world.
---
You see too much forks around, AOG. Please feel yourself... more open and *free* to discuss your mind, if you will.

Annoying Old Guy said...

Clovis;

You see too much forks around, AOG

Really, after this specific comment from you?

I think you often judge criticism towards capitalism based on the idealization you have of it, not on its actual incarnation out there.

You validate my analysis and then say it's wrong? I also notice you use "capitalism" when we were discussing "free markets", even after ragging on me for using "doublespeak" in the same circumstance.

To address your actual point, it depends on context. It's no different than physicists who sometimes argue theoretical models and sometimes experiments. You can't discuss how to improve if you can't discuss things that do not exist.

If you now create excessive regulation that is common to two different societies

Yes. But I find the argument that such trade treaties "create excessive regulation" to be weak and more over highly dependent on the particular treaty. The Vox article in specific presents a very weak case of dubious claims in that regard.

Clovis e Adri said...

AOG,

---
Really, after this specific comment from you?
---
Yes. As you see, no need to look for imaginary forks around - I tend to make it clear when I point one to you.

---
I also notice you use "capitalism" when we were discussing "free markets", even after ragging on me for using "doublespeak" in the same circumstance.
---
Hey, let us review the proper order here: it all started with you answering that Harry's view on capitalism - that you interpreted as free markets - were all wrong.

Hence my comment. If you dismiss his criticisms because you take capitalism for its idealization - something he also pointed out - you are hiding from the heat, IMHO.

---
To address your actual point, it depends on context.
---
So it is probably my fault, but I have difficulty in getting when you are addressing the idealization or the real thing.

---
But I find the argument that such trade treaties "create excessive regulation" to be weak and more over highly dependent on the particular treaty.
---
I thought it was clear enough we were talking about this very particular treaty. The article is careful also to notice a difference between past treaties and the ones being negotiated more recently.

Take, for example, the "work regulations" in this and other recent treaties there mentioned. What are their objectives? In surface, to ensure workers rights abroad for the greater good of humanity. In practice, to make the workforce more expensive in those countries' competing industries and, maybe equally important, to give a tool to restrict competition by lawsuits (e.g. by showing their workers were in conditions not allowed by the treaty, to deny their access to the market).

Now, a good progressive should think that the above will be good anyway, for it is regulation that will make workers better off, right?

But as far as I understand the Libertarian views here, that's a fallacy - it is more regulation that will make the economy grow less, people will have less jobs, etc.

So what is your view here, AOG? And I am not even asking yet about the more complex intellectual property stuff...

Annoying Old Guy said...

Clovis;

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Yes. As you see, no need to look for imaginary forks around - I tend to make it clear when I point one to you.
^---

Um, if you actual do such forks, that would seem to make them non-imaginary.

v---
Hey, let us review the proper order here: it all started with you answering that Harry's view on capitalism - that you interpreted as free markets - were all wrong.
^---

Right, because his idiosyncratic use of the term "capitalism" meant we were talking about different things.

v---
Hence my comment. If you dismiss his criticisms because you take capitalism for its idealization - something he also pointed out - you are hiding from the heat, IMHO.
^---

No, I dismiss his criticisms against capitalism as irrelevant to free markets, because according to Eagar himself, those are different things. It is *not* the case that the term "free market" is an idealization of Eagar-Capitalism. They are *unrelated* as stated by Eagar. Why then should criticism of one have any meaning for the other? I am defending free markets. If Eagar wants to slam on whatever he means by "capitalism", that's fine, but it doesn't have anything to do with me since I don't defend (or even care) about that.

v---
I thought it was clear enough we were talking about this very particular treaty. The article is careful also to notice a difference between past treaties and the ones being negotiated more recently.
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Not to me - I read the article as a general diatribe against trade treaties because it spent just a little bit of time on the TTP.

v---
Take, for example, the "work regulations" in this and other recent treaties there mentioned. What are their objectives? In surface, to ensure workers rights abroad for the greater good of humanity.
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Really? People write that and are serious about it? And other people believe it? Honestly, I'd just laugh at anyone who told me that.

v---
But as far as I understand the Libertarian views here, that's a fallacy - it is more regulation that will make the economy grow less, people will have less jobs, etc.

So what is your view here, AOG? And I am not even asking yet about the more complex intellectual property stuff...
^---

Is it clear the treaty creates *more* regulation? If you have N different jurisdictions with N slightly different sets of regulations, creating a single set of regulations will be *less* regulation.

I will note that libertarians are minarchists, not anarchists, and therefore accept some level of regulation. How much is an appropriate is a nonsensical question, like asking "how much code is needed for this program?" because the content and type of regulation matters as much (if not more) than volume. The problem with arguing with people who consider "regulation" to be an undifferentiated mass is if you bring up shutting down a winery for using volunteers they'll respond as if you were against regulations prohibiting slave labor. The actual libertarian doctrine is that regulation that interferes with the free, consenting exchange of goods and labor has those bad effects. I hadn't looked at the specific details of this treaty enough to render a judgement.

There are other bad effects of excessive regulation - you might look at this article for some of them.

Clovis e Adri said...

AOG,

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I hadn't looked at the specific details of this treaty enough to render a judgement.
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So if you ever do, give us a heads up.

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There are other bad effects of excessive regulation - you might look at this article for some of them.
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I am well aware of them. That's the main reason I think it is counter-productive to make ever more laws on intellectual property rights and its enforcement.

When we get to the point that the way you slide down your finger in a screen is patented and protected by the full force of the State - and that's not even noticed for the absurd and ridiculous thing it is - I hardly can't bother myself to protest not being allowed a gun at home, as per your link.

Annoying Old Guy said...

I'd still worry a lot more about not being able to have a gun a home - see how it worked out for all those people in Baltimore.

If I were in charge, there would be no software patents of any sort. I've done what I can against them, even participated pro bono as a technical witness in a court case to over turn one almost as stupid as your example. Copy rights would be a lot shorter under my rule as well.

Clovis e Adri said...

AOG,

I am no anti-gun type, yet I think you overestimate the benefits of having one. Can you recall to be ever in real need of one in your long life?

Now, I do swipe my fingers at a screen every day :-)