This is topic How Libertarian are you? in forum General Comments at The Ornery American Forum.


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Posted by flydye45 (Member # 2004) on :
 
Libertarianism seems in the air on the posts.

Here's a list of libertarian ideas. Which ones do you hold? Rate them one to ten (with ten being the most restrictive) I will also post my ideas. Please note that this also includes a hands off approach to "rescuing" the actors from their behaviours.

No Sexual regulation 4 (mostly teens and clubs out of sight)
No regulation of drug use 5
No regulation of driving and entertainment behaviour (parachuting off bridges, bull fighting). 6
No gun control laws. 3-4
No behaviour laws in general (i.e. public nudity, screaming in people's faces, mimes in parks) 2

What am I missing? Perhaps it would be better to pick one and go on at length if you prefer.
 
Posted by Zyne (Member # 117) on :
 
What do driving and parachuting off bridges have to do with each other? Or driving and bull fighting?
 
Posted by Zyne (Member # 117) on :
 
I'll go ahead and bite on the rest:

Sex regulation: 1
Drug use: 3
Gun control: 2
Public behavior: 1

Plus the standard caveat: I am addressing the things that fall into these categories that do not, per se, cause harm to another person or their property. So I am not, for example, addressing the "what if" of being so rude to a Bushie that I "make" them hit me, or the "what if" of him having sex with her while HIV positive without telling her and without protection, etc. The drug use and gun control scores aren't 1 for me because there is capacity in both to do great harm through ordinary negligence, and drug use gets an additional point because of the sometimes altered state use produces, making rational choices harder in some circumstances. Also, I separate drug use from drug addiction, so treating addiction without criminalizing use are consistent positions.
 
Posted by DonaldD (Member # 1052) on :
 
What about commercial/economic issues?
 
Posted by WarrsawPact (Member # 1275) on :
 
I don't know what exactly I could put into this post that I haven't put into others, and a ratings system like that seems dangerous to me. A bit oversimplified.

Determinism/Might makes right, TANSTAAFL, YRTSYFEAMN.
In that order.
 
Posted by flydye45 (Member # 2004) on :
 
Excuse me Zyne. I should define drivng. Operating a vehicle without the standard safety equipment (seat belts, helmets etc). Some nanny staters think it immoral to drive this way. I could care less, but with the caveat that they should be stupid on their own dime.

Warsaw, I agree. For example, when it comes to consenting adults, I am close to a one (with the caveat that it isn't in a park at noon). When it comes to children, I am closer to an 8 or 9. But it's the starting point of a conversation.

For example, I never would have guessed Zyne would be so free with gun laws.

I originally put in economic issue as well, but I thougt a) they weren't as "juicy" a topic, and b) I really didn't know enough about the issue to be fair to it.
 
Posted by FIJC (Member # 1092) on :
 
You forget to acknowledge the Libertarian's economic philosophy (Ludwig von Mises, Milton Friedman, etc.), which is crucial.
 
Posted by Dave at Work (Member # 1906) on :
 
quote:
I originally put in economic issue as well, but I thougt a) they weren't as "juicy" a topic, and b) I really didn't know enough about the issue to be fair to it.
Perhaps, but remember that libertarian philosophy is based on economics. All the Libertarian party's other positions supposedly follow from those economic underpinnings. I am still reading up on it and couldn't do the arguments justice, so I won't try to argue the points right now. Suffice it to say that when discussing the merits of libertarians you should spend some time learning about the central theme of their philosophy and not brushing it off because it isn't "juciy enough".
 
Posted by flydye45 (Member # 2004) on :
 
I suppose I am instead focusing on the economic aspects of "personal morality". Instead of talking about the criminality of the tax code or such loopy ideas of the wholesale sell off of federal land to finance the government, teen pregnancy and it's economic effects was more debatable. I started the thread, I get to make the intial comment.

If you would like to discuss or display the Libertarian Economic Agenda, I would be happy to hear it. Or are you just here to snipe?
 
Posted by Dave at Work (Member # 1906) on :
 
I'm not trying to snipe. I didn't intend to give that impression either. I have been reading up on Classic Liberalism on my off time at work and this has included a few forays into libertarianism. All of my research links are on my computer at work and I am currently on vacation. I will be happy to dig them up and send them to you when I get back after New Years. My point however, is that from what I have read of libertarianism, just about all of their beliefs rely on arguments of free market economics. Note that their strongest belief is in personal liberty, though from what I have read of this they derive it from free market economics. Note also that there is a difference between libertarians and Libertarians in that libertarian refers to those who believe in a libertarian philosophy while Libertarian referes to members of the Libertarian party which claims to hold to libertarian values.
 
Posted by Zyne (Member # 117) on :
 
But how is driving a car similar to bull fighting or parachuting off a bridge? I suppose if you're a fire jumper the parachuting might have utility, but ... bull fighting?

Sadly, driving in public is one I would score a 4 or perhaps higher--higher than drug use and much higher than guns. There is great potential for harm with a car; it's a massive, fast-moving killing machine. And I don't care a bit about who pays for what or who gets what for free for what meal or what the invisible hand is doing (tho I suspect it's giving us all the bird). I care whether the roads are clear and I can get where I want to go in a timely fashion. So I'm all for funding the scraping up of the bodies that have become highway road kill.

flydye, whose children? Are you saying that government should restrict and, relatively speaking, heavily regulate what you can and can't do with regard to your own children? Or are you talking about what you can and can't do wrt: strangers' children, without their parents' (or even parent's) consent?
 
Posted by JLMyers (Member # 1983) on :
 
Sex regulation Adults: 1

Sex regulation Adults with regard to children not their own: 10

Sex regulation, with regard to what I teach my own children: 1
(but I support sex ed in school)

Drug use: 2
(treatment and education)

Gun control: 5
(no atuomatic weapons, child locks, and safety features mandatory)

Public behavior: 1

Driving: 5

Risky behavior (that hurts nobody else): 1

KE

[ December 28, 2004, 11:11 PM: Message edited by: JLMyers ]
 
Posted by flydye45 (Member # 2004) on :
 
Zyne, the issue is how much control should the government have over personal decisions. Bullfighting or driving without a seat belt are both choices one makes in life. Both are dangerous. While driving has a lower risk, you do it more often, so the issue stays the same. It is the same with any activity.

Or to put it another way, think of seat belt and helmet laws as property right issues. You pay for the car, you should use it as you see fit provided you don't damage other people's property. Yet some advocate forbidding smokers from being able to smoke in their own homes (because of the children...)

Which leads to the kids. Child protection laws are needed to guard them against predators and extremely negligent parents. So laws protecting sixteen year old girls and boys are necessary. And by the same token, "decency" laws are also important. Should two people in the middle of Balboa Park be able to "get it on" next to a family picniking? I say no. This may be "free expression" but you are also wantonly interfering in other peoples right to raise their kids and even grossing other people out. Which is where I draw the line as far as indecency.

Does that explain the "bullfigting vs. driving" issue?
 
Posted by TomDavidson (Member # 99) on :
 
quote:

This may be "free expression" but you are also wantonly interfering in other peoples right to raise their kids and even grossing other people out.

Who gets to decide how kids should be raised, what they should be exposed to, and what qualifies as "gross?"
 
Posted by Storm Saxon (Member # 1070) on :
 
quote:

My point however, is that from what I have read of libertarianism, just about all of their beliefs rely on arguments of free market economics.

Also, I think their beliefs rely pretty heavily on the idea that private property is, you know, private.
 
Posted by Danzig (Member # 1358) on :
 
No sexual regulation between those able to give consent*: 1
No regulation of drug use: 2 (antibiotics should be regulated)
No regulation of driving: 5 Yes, driving impaired is bad. It is never going to go away, and taking steps to minimize its effects that are realistic rather than feel-good should be a goal, especially if taxation is not voluntary.
No gun control laws: 1 There is a fundamental right to self-defense.
Public behavior: 1 Tell your children that the man drinking the beer on the street will go to hell, but he paid for the beer with his own money.

*Voluntary intoxication does not negate consent. I am still up in the air about involuntary intoxication, and I think the answer depends on how much prior experience the victim has.
 
Posted by FiredrakeRAGE (Member # 1224) on :
 
Danzig -

I assume I'm misreading your 'involuntary intoxication' subscript. Involuntary intoxication as in date-rape drug & etc.?

--Firedrake
 
Posted by Danzig (Member # 1358) on :
 
Probably not... unless you are physically unable to resist, I still say you keep some level of control. You might not be able to tell exactly what you are on, but you are always able to tell you are altered, and take appropriate actions.
 
Posted by stroll (Member # 2219) on :
 
I regard spiking someone as criminal, and every action taken towards the involuntarily intoxicated person after that, whether they reportedly consent or not. Consider that most people are not used to the effects of Rohypnol et al, and wouldn't know how to react to the onsetting effects.
 
Posted by LoverOfJoy (Member # 157) on :
 
Involuntary and consent just don't go together.
 
Posted by Danzig (Member # 1358) on :
 
Well obviously they did not consent to the drug... but altered state of mind or not, you consent to intercourse. Spiking is wrong, that has nothing to do with consenting to sexual intercourse.

Not that anyone who spikes another's drink is not pond scum, of course. Unless it is my drink; I like free drugs.
 
Posted by TomDavidson (Member # 99) on :
 
I would argue, Danzig, that our legal system already takes mental and physical impairment into consideration when determining whether "consent" is possible.

By your logic, a woman in a coma "consents" to intercourse with an orderly; her "consent," after all, is predicated on the fact that her condition, which she did not choose, prevents her from objecting to the act.

When someone deliberately impairs themselves and then commits an outrageous or criminal act, we hold them responsible for not only the impairment but the actions they took while impaired. However, when someone becomes impaired through no decision of their own, we generally do not assume that they were capable of consenting to actions and/or engaging in voluntary behavior; this is reflected in many elements of sentencing and legal presumption of guilt.
 
Posted by Zyne (Member # 117) on :
 
If someone spikes my drink with alcohol to the point I am too messed up to drive legally, and I drive, I think I'm still accountable for violating the law.

I agree that involuntary intoxication does not nesc. make one unable to consent.

flydye--I don't think driving is something that can ordinarily be avoided today. Bullfighting can.

What is "getting it on," anyway? If I'm kissing a partner in the park, and a family sets up shop near me, would I have to stop "getting it on"
 
Posted by Danzig (Member # 1358) on :
 
Tom, how could someone in a coma say yes? For me, consent takes more than not refusing, it takes active acceptance. Now depending on the drug used, one might not be able to remember saying yes, but they are quite capable of saying it, and meaning it at the time.

I do not accept the laws of America or any other country as valids methods of determining the morality of an action.
 
Posted by JLMyers (Member # 1983) on :
 
quote:
but altered state of mind or not, you consent to intercourse.
Bull****! It's a medical fact that alcohol and other drugs lower inhibitions and impair judgement. Someone drugged and then raped is not at fault at all. And the scum that do this should be thrown in jail for life.

KE
 
Posted by Danzig (Member # 1358) on :
 
Bull**** yourself. It is a medical fact that all the altered judgement in the world does not displace certain core priorities. If you decide you will not voluntarily sleep with someone you just met, then you will not. If you are able to utter no, it is not rape. You are able to tell when you are no longer sober, even if you are not certain what chemical is responsible for it.
 
Posted by FiredrakeRAGE (Member # 1224) on :
 
Tom Davidson - There are two people, person A and person B. Person A is drunk, Person B is sober. If person B has sex with person A, and person B realizes the intoxicated state of person A, person B can be charged with rape.

Danzig -

It is a medical fact? Link? As for the 'altered judgment', if a person is drugged without their consent, their rights have already been infringed upon. In my opinion (and that of the State), if a person is intoxicated against their will and then another person has sex with them, it is rape.

--Firedrake
 
Posted by flydye45 (Member # 2004) on :
 
quote:
flydye--I don't think driving is something that can ordinarily be avoided today. Bullfighting can.

What is "getting it on," anyway? If I'm kissing a partner in the park, and a family sets up shop near me, would I have to stop "getting it on"

SEATBELTS ZYNE! SEATBELTS! DO YOU DRIVE WITHOUT SEATBELTS! This is my third (probably futile) attempt to explain this concept.

I will repeat myself again. Driving without a seatbelt is semi criminalized now, and more so as NannyStaters work to criminalize anything that smacks of extra risk (which, of course, includes bullfighting).

Driving may be something one cannot avoid. Driving without a seatbelt CAN be avoided.

Is this something the government should be involved in? This is a libertarian idea both based on personal liberty and property rights (which is mostly the same thing).

So, to reiterate, driving without "proper restraints and safety equipment" is frowned upon by insurance companies and their subsidiary the government, and even semi-criminalized. This is similar to many other forms of entertainment which have an inherent personal risk. Does the libertarian aspects of your personal philosophy feel that this is something the government should be involved in, or is it an intrusive assault upon the personal right of everyone to be as stupid as they want to be (known as the pursuit of happiness).

Did anyone else have severe problems making this connection?


Tom,

quote:
Who gets to decide how kids should be raised, what they should be exposed to, and what qualifies as "gross?"
Simple, unless you want your children raised in government creches, with federal regulations on standards and policys of children (the raising of to post-adolescence Vol. 1-53), you depend on the parents. And I don't think there is much difficulty in finding a rational consensus, particularly with the concept of "neighborhoods".

So, Irma and Joe-Bob don't get to complain about gay pride marches in San Fran, and Neil and Bob, barring being activist twits trying to create a cause, shouldn't complain when they are penalized for trying to "get it on" (interpret as you will Zyne) in Iowa in public.

But even exluding such extremes, I think we could agree that a twit in a minivan in traffic watching porn in his vehicle in plain sight of others, is also infringing on others. Additionally, we shouldn't wish people of any mix of genders coupulating, fornicating, "knowing one another in a lewd manner", inserting tab A in slot B, engaging in sexual congress, doing the nasty, or just plain having SEX in public. Seven definitions. Is that enough? (And no, this isn't directed at you, Tom)
 
Posted by ATW (Member # 1690) on :
 
I'm libertarian on a national scale because the national government is not supposed to constitutionally be involved in many things. But I have no problem with local governments setting local standards for things not addressed in the constitution.

No Sexual regulation 1 federal 3 local (no problem with zoning regs. legalize prostitution is OK)

No regulation of drug use: 1 federal 3 local (take any drugs you want but the state can regulate what you do while stoned like prohibiting driving. And employers can choose not to hire drug users.)


No regulation of driving and entertainment behaviour 4 federal 4 local (roads don't belong to you alone so your choices aren't the only ones that matter. Dangerous entertainment is mostly self-regulating because they'll get sued out of business if unsafe.)


No gun control laws: I have no idea what number to give this. I don't think laws prohibiting or suppressing gun ownership are constitutional. I'd support a constitutional amendment for registration plus prohibiting ownership of handguns and automatic weapons but no one has proposed one. Libertarians in general want the country run according to the constitution but I don't know how they feel about amending the constitution on controversial issues.

No behaviour laws in general 1 federal 5 local (sex acts should occur in the back seat on a deserted stretch of road not on the hood of the car in the Wal-Mart parking lot)
 
Posted by TomDavidson (Member # 99) on :
 
"But even exluding such extremes, I think we could agree that a twit in a minivan in traffic watching porn in his vehicle in plain sight of others, is also infringing on others."

Nope.
If you're going to go this far, you're pretty much falling back on only banning outright those things which cause demonstrable harm -- which sex in public (or porn in public) does not.

So sex in public, graphic porn, and the like, like gay pride parades or prostitution, are just more things that, in theory, communities should be able to decide whether to ban or not. If you live in an area where sex in public is seen as a beautiful form of family entertainment, why should the federal government tell you it's illegal?

[ December 30, 2004, 11:21 AM: Message edited by: TomDavidson ]
 
Posted by ATW (Member # 1690) on :
 
quote:


So sex in public, graphic porn, and the like, like gay pride parades or prostitution, are just more things that, in theory, communities should be able to decide whether to ban or not. If you live in an area where sex in public is seen as a beautiful form of family entertainment, why should the federal government tell you it's illegal? [/QB]

Well said.
 
Posted by Storm Saxon (Member # 1070) on :
 
quote:

I'm libertarian on a national scale because the national government is not supposed to constitutionally be involved in many things. But I have no problem with local governments setting local standards for things not addressed in the constitution.

I do not get why so many communitarians call themselves 'libertarian'. Let me point out that in the libertarian scheme of things, there is no such thing as public property short of land used for national defense. (edit: You have land that can be owned by many different private individuals for whatever purpose, and they are free to set standards for that land as they wish. ) This ideal applies to local/state/national governments. This is kind of what I was getting at with my line about private property.

So, while you are certainly free to declare that you think the federal government shouldn't regulate certain activities, but local governments should, I wouldn't say that this is a libertarian mindset, since private property is private regardless of whether you're talking about national or local state.

[ December 30, 2004, 01:03 PM: Message edited by: Storm Saxon ]
 
Posted by ATW (Member # 1690) on :
 
Having hung out with libertarians, voted for libertarians, considered running for office as a libertarian, and defended libertarian points of view on many occassions, some libertarians are willing to cut me some slack if someone else refers to me as a libertarian.


"Let me point out that in the libertarian scheme of things, there is no such thing as public property short of land used for national defense."

No capitol building? No White House? No District of Columbia? I've even heard some libertarians advocate settling disagreements between individuals in courts which use a court building. The libertarians I've known haven't been against public property used to run the basic functions of government.

[ December 30, 2004, 01:30 PM: Message edited by: ATW ]
 
Posted by Storm Saxon (Member # 1070) on :
 
I have this urge to say 'It's easy, if you try.'

O.K. Perhaps I was a bit overbroad in saying 'no public land', but I think the general point still stands, which is, by the way, that it's not regulation per se that libertarians seem to be against, but state regulation. For instance, since there are no public tax funded highways, the owners of the highways define what is acceptable use of those highways.
 
Posted by velcro (Member # 1216) on :
 
Would 19th century England be considered libertarian? If not, what is the closest historical model?
 
Posted by ATW (Member # 1690) on :
 
Sure, that's how I've understood the libertarian position.

I didn't try to pass myself off as a total libertarian. I'm more of a constitutionalist. The constitution sets forth a libertarian form of national government then reserves other rights to the states and individuals.

I don't mind if state governments want to use those rights. Historically, if the states abuse those rights, people will either vote to make things right or vote with their feet and leave.

Much tougher to leave the country than it is to leave a state.
 
Posted by flydye45 (Member # 2004) on :
 
quote:
Nope.
If you're going to go this far, you're pretty much falling back on only banning outright those things which cause demonstrable harm -- which sex in public (or porn in public) does not.

So sex in public, graphic porn, and the like, like gay pride parades or prostitution, are just more things that, in theory, communities should be able to decide whether to ban or not. If you live in an area where sex in public is seen as a beautiful form of family entertainment, why should the federal government tell you it's illegal?

Hmm, I thought I said that exact same thing in my nod to federalism on the post...which by the way also strikes against a federal mandate legalizing abortion nation wide. But hypotheticals are one thing. Do you know of any town which allows such displays? Do you support such displays? Would such displays not infringe on the free enjoyment of others of public places? And no, I am not advocating the "spinster aunt church lady" doctrine which the ACLU uses to war against religion, where ONE offended person is too many. I think some broad rules are possible.

Just so I can be clear, you, Tom Davidson, have no problem with public displays of sex in your neighborhood? You would feel comfortable with such displays standing next to your daughter or niece? Think about that closely. Philisophical principles are all well and good, but you have to live with the impact. And I don't think a bit of caution is out of place.
 
Posted by WarrsawPact (Member # 1275) on :
 
velcro - There is no acceptable libertarian model in history. You want to see who is most free today, check out The Index of Economic Freedom and then cross that list with countries with high political freedoms.
 
Posted by velcro (Member # 1216) on :
 
What comes closest, in your view, and what in that society is most non-libertarian? If nothing like it has ever been tried, how do you know it will work?
 
Posted by TomDavidson (Member # 99) on :
 
"Just so I can be clear, you, Tom Davidson, have no problem with public displays of sex in your neighborhood?"

So you're going to assert the necessity of a legal restriction based on a cultural taboo?

Do you also support federal bans on smoking?

(As a side note: to be perfectly honest, I'm not sure how I'd react to public displays of sex. I think it would depend on the quality of the sex and the performers involved, frankly.)
 
Posted by JLMyers (Member # 1983) on :
 
Danzig,

You can't be serious? If you drug someone and then take advantage of the fact that they are impaired (because of you) and rape them, then you are guilty, not them. Is there anyone else on this widely diversive board that agrees with this insanity Danzig is spewing?

KE

[ December 30, 2004, 05:49 PM: Message edited by: JLMyers ]
 
Posted by Danzig (Member # 1358) on :
 
Uh... you are guilty of intoxicating someone without their consent, which in my opinion is still a very serious crime. You are also a very bad person. But if you ask them, and they say yes, it is not rape. If they are impaired to a point where they are unable to say yes or no, and/or unable to physically resist, that is still rape, and I never meant to imply otherwise.

ATW - I second that private companies should be allowed to drug test and fire users. The government should be prohibited from doing the same, however.
 
Posted by stroll (Member # 2219) on :
 
quote:
So, to reiterate, driving without "proper restraints and safety equipment" is frowned upon by insurance companies and their subsidiary the government, and even semi-criminalized. This is similar to many other forms of entertainment which have an inherent personal risk.
The government is a subsidiary of insurance companies? Driving is a form of entertainment? Which country do you live in, la-la-land?
quote:
Did anyone else have severe problems making this connection?
I have not perfected my telepathy skills yet, so I didn't make the connection between driving and bullfights as being seatbelts, either.
I suggest you get someone to check your comments for coherence before you post.
 
Posted by stroll (Member # 2219) on :
 
quote:
flyedye: So, to reiterate, driving without "proper restraints and safety equipment" is frowned upon by insurance companies and their subsidiary the government, and even semi-criminalized. This is similar to many other forms of entertainment which have an inherent personal risk.
The government is a subsidiary of insurance companies? Driving is a form of entertainment? Which country do you live in, la-la-land?
quote:
Did anyone else have severe problems making this connection?
I have not perfected my telepathy skills yet, so I didn't make the connection between driving and bullfights as being seatbelts, either.
I suggest you get someone to check your comments for coherence before you post.
 
Posted by WarrsawPact (Member # 1275) on :
 
velcro - North Korea is about as far from libertarian as you'll ever find.

What comes closest to libertarian today? I'd say Hong Kong. They're *very* successful.
In fact, on the index of economic freedom, everyone near the top has been an economic powerhouse or is rapidly becoming better off (Estonia).

Generally speaking, the lower the economic freedom, the worse it gets for the people in that country. There's always room for improvement, but the strong pattern here is that the freer your economy, the better off the area tends to get over time. The connection between private property and personal freedom is extremely strong.

That's how I know free markets work: the freer they get, the more they work. It's evident in the world today. Look at who is successful versus who limps back from disturbances in their economy. Look at whose workers are becoming more productive the fastest. Look at who's got the highest standards of living and whose standards are rising the fastest. The stagnant places, even within countries, are the places where income inequality is actually the highest... and guess what? They're the places where regulation is highest.

If there's a lack of transparency in the workings of government, you see people struggling more, especially in small business. Most well-intentioned government regulation that goes beyond protection of rights, globally speaking, hurts more people than it helps.
 
Posted by Danzig (Member # 1358) on :
 
Also, more economic freedom means more money to bribe judges and/or hire defense attorneys when one is accused of violating a community standard.
 
Posted by WarrsawPact (Member # 1275) on :
 
... assuming that your lawyer is used as anything other than a threat to force an out-of-court settlement.

Read this from the WSJ's Opinion Journal (use kos@dailykos.com as login):
That 'Sluggish' Economy: It's Still the Strongest in the World
quote:
To look closely at international economic data is to be reminded that countries with comparatively low tax rates and regulatory burdens consistently outperform countries with high ones. Of course it's nice to know that America's "sluggish" economy remains a world-beater. It's even better to know why.

 
Posted by JLMyers (Member # 1983) on :
 
Danzig,

I'm glad you clarified. However, I still disagree with one point. If you drug someone without their knowledge even if they say yes, I believe you are guilty of rape.

Of course if they get themselves drunk or drugged and then say yes, it is not rape. Even if you encourage a girl to drink, but don't force her, IMO it is not rape. But now we're getting into the whole date rape argument; do girls allow themselves to get drunk so they can say yes and not feel guilty? Maybe this should be another thread?

KE

Edited to change to Danzig. Apologies to both parties.

[ December 30, 2004, 10:36 PM: Message edited by: JLMyers ]
 
Posted by Danzig (Member # 1358) on :
 
Did you mean Danzig?

Maybe it should be another thread.
 
Posted by TomDavidson (Member # 99) on :
 
"But if you ask them, and they say yes, it is not rape."

No, it's still rape.
They did not put themselves in a position in which they were unable to exercise better judgement; you put them there, without their consent or even knowledge.

If I strap you to a chair and subject you to brainwashing techniques in order to turn you into Zyne's love slave, does that mean that it's any less a rape than if we just left you strapped down all the time?
 
Posted by Danzig (Member # 1358) on :
 
Invalid analogy; those involuntarily drugged can leave the situation. Usually it is immediate and physical, but even if they are stuck somewhere the drug is going to wear off in a few hours. Kidnapping and forcible imprisonment are not part of that scenario. Personally, I think involuntary intoxication is at least as bad as rape, but you always retain your core self when intoxicated. And if you are intoxicated enough for the drug to have an effect on your judgement, it is not without your knowledge.
 
Posted by Dave at Work (Member # 1906) on :
 
quote:
but you always retain your core self when intoxicated.
I'm not sure that I can agree with you on this. Certainly when I have had a few drinks and I am a little more liberated than usual I can still make decisions that are generally consistent with my "core self". However, I have gotten much more drunk than that twice in my life. In both cases I did things that I would never have done were I sober. Nothing illegal. It is very easy to make a suggestion to someone who is that imparied and have them comply without thinking about it in the least. In my case it feels like I am a few seconds behind myself and when I catch up to the moment of the decision it has already been made and I cannot change it. In one of those cases, later when I had sobered up and was fighting a massive hangover, I realized what had happened and wondered why I was unable to say no to my friend's girlfriend. I didn't even like her and wasn't attracted to her in the least. While I think that the "core self", as you put it, is still there, I don't think that it is capeable of enforcing decisions when impaired to that extent by alchohol or other drugs.
 
Posted by flydye45 (Member # 2004) on :
 
What is wrong with legislating cultural taboos, particularly when they are so broad based? I would also challenge the "cultural" part of your assertion. China, the Muslim nations, even Thailand all forbid such acts. While Europe is pretty free on public displays of nudity, I think even they draw the line at couples fornicating in front of children. Africa is a mixed bag as usual. In fact I would challenge you to name a nation which allows such public displays.

And as I said, let communities decide. Just as I would not impose the "church lady" standard be the norm for criminalizing behaviour, nor would I allow the "Larry Flynt" standard be the bar for allowing questionable behaviour.

And I gather from your comments you don't have kids.

BTW I had thought I had cut that comment for being a bit too confrontational, so sorry.
 
Posted by FiredrakeRAGE (Member # 1224) on :
 
AWT -

The First through Tenth amendments are described as 'further declaratory and restrictive clauses'. With that in mind, I do not feel that they can be modified.

StormSaxon -

A ton of Libertarians are for this and that. This is one major reason why Badnarik didn't get many votes. Politics revolves around two things - basic unalterable principles and the will to compromise the small things. Many libertarians have the former quality, but not the latter.

--Firedrake
 
Posted by Storm Saxon (Member # 1070) on :
 
Actually, most people who vote Libertarian tend to be pretty solid in their pov in my experience. It's one of the things that seperates the 'big Ls' from the 'little Ls'. Private property, a weak state internally but with a strong retaliatory military. It's been the 'official' stance for Libertarians for as long as I've looked into them. Of course, not really being a Libertarian, but having a keen appreciation for them, I am certainly willing to be corrected on this. [Smile] I get most of my information about their beliefs from antiwar.com/cato.com/reason.com and from talking with a Libertarian of my acquiantance at work.

I do agree with you that a lot of people who have called themselves libertarians are basically just doing it do the cool independent thing, just to show their individuality or something, but really vote Republican 99% of the time.
 
Posted by TomDavidson (Member # 99) on :
 
Actually, fly, I've got a daughter. [Smile] Why do you assume that someone who believes that public sex is not inherently harmful is childless?

What inherent harm do you believe is present in witnessing sex?
 
Posted by Adam Lassek (Member # 1514) on :
 
quote:
I do agree with you that a lot of people who have called themselves libertarians are basically just doing it do the cool independent thing, just to show their individuality or something, but really vote Republican 99% of the time.
You're probably right, but I think becoming an Independant is an important step in distancing oneself from the two-party vitriol even if you vote the same.

I wanted to vote more Libertarian than I did last election, but unfortunately the guy running for Congress struck me as one of those kooky libertarians [Wink]
 
Posted by Storm Saxon (Member # 1070) on :
 
My last post should say cato.org. Pardon.

Also, why is public sex harmful? I mean, I guess a stray bit of bodily fluid might hit someone in the eye, but other than that, what do you expect would happen if people were doin' it where other people could see them? I mean, if sex is bad, is even public kissing toxic after prolonged exposure, or is it just when we start to see a hint of tongue action that our immortal souls are in jeopardy?
 
Posted by Storm Saxon (Member # 1070) on :
 
And Adam underlines the real reason why more people don't vote libertarian. The one that I hear most often. It's not because the Libertarian party has a chaotic plan or anything. Hell, of all the parties out there, theirs is the *least* confusing, I would think.

edited for grammatical and syntactical stupidity.

[ December 31, 2004, 08:14 PM: Message edited by: Storm Saxon ]
 
Posted by flydye45 (Member # 2004) on :
 
I am forced to retreat into an old cliche, "If I have to explain it, you wouldn't understand anyway." Thus I will not waste my time. Good luck with that.

Following that doctrine, I assume that you would allow her to see the odd Shannon Tweed film at any particular age provided it is not violent. Why don't you try it as a social experiment with yourself. Get a nice soft core porn and watch it with your daughter. And even if you could, how is mom going to react?

It is easy to say things on the internet. It is another to live with the consequences. If you hope you are not unreflective enough to actually try that out.
 
Posted by flydye45 (Member # 2004) on :
 
Excuse me.

The last sentence should read "I hope you are not unreflective enough to actually try that out.
 
Posted by EDanaII (Member # 1062) on :
 
Part of the problem with this thread is that it seems to be focused around the notion of individual rights. Many here have argued as if rights are the foundation of our laws, they are not. Laws exist to ensure that society functions smoothly. Rights are merely those boundaries in which we declare that the law has gone too far.

To some of the points at hand...

Seat belt (and helmet) laws. While it is the right of a person to endanger themselves, it is not a right willfully use resources that could be rightfully used elsewhere. Here, in Arizona, we have something we call the "Stupid Motorist Law." Normally, our stream beds are dry, but, with a good rain, they can swell rapidly. Often times, motorists try and cross these washes only to get stuck and need to be rescued. Here, in Az, we charge those motorists for their rescue. Why? Because accidents also increase during rainstorms and here are rescue workings whose valuable time has been diverted from helping people in accidents, rescuing some moron he didn't need to be there in the first place.

The same is true for seat belts and helmets. Wear them, and you're less likely to need emergency care for your stupidity. Fail to wear them, and you are taking valuable time from those who genuinely need those services.

This law serves society by making the lives of emergency workers a little easier.

Public displays of sex. Sex is an act that needs to be, like fire, treated with respect. Like fire, it has consequences, chiefly disease and pregnancy. Treating sex casually reduces that respect, increases the likelihood for casual sex and, therefore, increases the consequences of disease and pregnancy. The aspect of disease should be obvious, once again, we have health care workers treating what need not be treated. Pregnancy is less obvious. In most cases, it is not a bad thing, but unwanted pregnancies lead to unnecessary abortions, an act which is abhorrent to some.

Trivialize sex and you make the undesirable consequences more likely. More disease, more abortion, more abandonment, etc... This creates a greater (and unnecessary) burden on social workers.

While I could care less whether or not some joker wears his safety belt, or if some foolish girl gets pregnant, I do care about overworking our health care workers or an unwanted child who deserves better than abortion or abandonment. And society can only benefit if we manage such issues.

Ed.

Corrected spelling.

[ January 01, 2005, 11:25 AM: Message edited by: EDanaII ]
 
Posted by TomDavidson (Member # 99) on :
 
"Following that doctrine, I assume that you would allow her to see the odd Shannon Tweed film at any particular age provided it is not violent."

Ah. You apparently do not believe in a distinction between condoning, promoting, or tolerating a behavior. [Smile]

Renting a Shannon Tweed video would, indeed, constitute "promotion." Walking past two people having sex is, at best, tolerance.

I would like you to explain why, exactly, public sex is more harmful than not wearing a seatbelt -- to the point that you would not legislate the former, which has never killed anyone, but would legislate the latter.
 
Posted by EDanaII (Member # 1062) on :
 
quote:
Renting a Shannon Tweed video would, indeed, constitute "promotion." Walking past two people having sex is, at best, tolerance.
No, walking past two people having sex would be tolerating, silently condoning and -- by failure to act -- promoting sex. If it isn't bad enough to stop, it can't be all that bad...

Ed.
 
Posted by FiredrakeRAGE (Member # 1224) on :
 
Ed -

Hardly. If you walk by someone having a beer, but believe that alcohol is bad, you're not promoting alcohol. You're simply tolerating that person's ability to imbibe alcohol.

--Firedrake
 
Posted by philnotfil (Member # 1881) on :
 
I think that the libertarian ideals are fantastic. My two issues are "objective harm" and the political ineptitude of the party.
 
Posted by EDanaII (Member # 1062) on :
 
@ FiredrakeRAGE

What you say would be true, IF society currently condemned adult alcohol use. It doesn't. It does, however, condemn child alcohol use, and failure to act would not only be condoning its use, it could get you arrested.

No less true for Public Sex. It is currently condemned by society. Failure to condemn it is, in effect, condonement.

Ed.
 
Posted by TomDavidson (Member # 99) on :
 
"It does, however, condemn child alcohol use, and failure to act would not only be condoning its use, it could get you arrested."

Note that we've actually got a different crime here, though. [Smile]

Currently, society condemns alcohol use by children. In other words, society as a whole seeks to punish children who use alcohol. Moreover, it punishes people who promote the use of alcohol in children. And it even, because it considers childhood use of alcohol fairly serious, has chosen in some areas to make the toleration of childhood alcohol use punishable as a crime, as well.

This does not mean that toleration IS promotion simply because we choose to punish both behaviors; in fact, the mere fact that (in both Wisconsin and Indiana, for example) those are two different crimes should suggest to you that the behaviors are not equivalent.
 
Posted by flydye45 (Member # 2004) on :
 
Ed, you explained things clearly and I agree with you wholeheartedly.

Yes, there is a difference between tolerance, promoting, and condoning. Every person seems to have a different place where they put the line.

When I walk by people smoking, I usually tell my kids that such behaviour is very bad for you. So, while I "tolerate" their right to smoke, I do not condone the action to my children, much less promote it. I would treat sex in public the same way, if it were legal. The fact that it is not states that those who are tolerant of such behaviour are in the (loud) minority.

It is also no stretch to state that sex, like alchol use, needs to be regulated and kept away from children because it is pleasureable. Since they have little judgement, children need protection. That is why violence isn't as big a risk in movies as sex. Being hit with a fist hurts. Getting a BJ doesn't. Which would you rather engage in?

The "tolerance" that Tom speaks of has led to 13 year old girls having "rainbow parties" with boys, even in such dull places as Ohio. Is that what tolerance has given us?
 
Posted by EDanaII (Member # 1062) on :
 
@ TomDavidson

What you say is basically true, Tom, but you are, however, not abstracting your argument to the proper level.

To do so you would have to argue that... Condemning an action seeks to prevent it. Both tolerating and condoning an action DO NOTHING to prevent the action, making them both, by virtue of their effect, the opposite of condemn. None of them seek to prevent an action.

Ed.

Edited because I forgot to add... Since promoting IS the opposite of condemning, and, by virtue of their effect, tolerating and condoning can be considered in the same realm as promoting. I.e. None of them seek to prevent an action.

[ January 04, 2005, 01:16 PM: Message edited by: EDanaII ]
 
Posted by Danzig (Member # 1358) on :
 
I could just as easily say that condemning and tolerating an action are the same, since neither of them actively seek to cause an action.
 
Posted by TomDavidson (Member # 99) on :
 
"It is also no stretch to state that sex, like alchol use, needs to be regulated and kept away from children because it is pleasureable. Since they have little judgement, children need protection."

Are you Mormon, fly? I've heard this argument from Mormons, but from few others. (It's worth noting, BTW, that "rainbow parties" are generally discredited as exaggerated urban legends.)

"tolerating and condoning can be considered in the same realm as promoting"

Nope. That's like saying that black and red are the same color as blue, since none of them are green.

[ January 04, 2005, 08:36 PM: Message edited by: TomDavidson ]
 
Posted by rolva (Member # 2234) on :
 
I may be off-topic here, but the thread being on Libertarianism and all, I was wondering whether there is an intrinsic foreign policy associated with it. Would a Libertarian government be isolationist in the international scene?
 
Posted by philnotfil (Member # 1881) on :
 
quote:
Originally posted by TomDavidson:
(It's worth noting, BTW, that "rainbow parties" are generally discredited as exaggerated urban legends.)

That's funny, we just had a student suspended for hosting one.
 
Posted by EDanaII (Member # 1062) on :
 
@ Danzig
quote:
I could just as easily say that condemning and tolerating an action are the same, since neither of them actively seek to cause an action.
You could say that, yes, but it would not be true. Active or not, the intent of condemning is to stop the action in question.

Ed.
 
Posted by TomDavidson (Member # 99) on :
 
"Active or not, the intent of condemning is to stop the action in question."

Yes. And the intent of promoting is to encourage the action in question.

Whereas the intent of tolerance is to permit the action in question.

There is as big a difference between permission and promotion as between permission and condemnation.
 
Posted by EDanaII (Member # 1062) on :
 
Granted, Tom, but that is why I am arguing "by virtue of effect."

Danzig's point about activity does not change that argument. Condemning something -- condemnation is, by definition, active -- still seeks to prevent any further action. Tolerating -- by definition, passive -- still does nothing to prevent further action.

Permission, OTOH, supports my argument, as to permit something is to allow it to happen. And if you tolerate or condone it, you also allow it to happen. Not one of those three do anything to prevent further action. Ergo, _by virtue of their effect,_ all three are still the opposite of condemnation.

Ed.
 
Posted by TomDavidson (Member # 99) on :
 
*laugh* So you're saying that there's no such thing as a shade of gray on your planet? That if we aren't actively pushing to make something illegal, we're effectively promoting it?

[ January 05, 2005, 01:10 PM: Message edited by: TomDavidson ]
 
Posted by EDanaII (Member # 1062) on :
 
It ain't just "my planet," it is _the law._ Laugh at me all you want Tom, but in so doing you are clearly demonstrating your lack of understanding concerning law.

You see, that is exactly why law exists, to render shades of gray into black and white. If it did not do this, it could not make judgements and, therefore, could not function.

Which is exactly why I was able to turn Firedrake's point around so easily. Society tolerates adult drinking, therefore, the law tolerates adult drinking, defining it only in black and white when drinking crosses a specific boundary. I.e. operating any type of vehicle. Society condemns child alcohol, so the law will not tolerate, condone or promote it. Instead, true to its function, it renders everything black and white where alcohol and children are involved. Tolerating or condoning such drinking is irrelevant because you have already crossed the boundary into black and white. Nothing else, as a result, matters.

Or, in other words...


Ed.
 
Posted by JLMyers (Member # 1983) on :
 
Once again I am forced to admit how old I've become.

What is a "rainbow party"?

KE
 
Posted by TomDavidson (Member # 99) on :
 
quote:

Where Society promotes an action, the law will promote it.
Where Society condones an action, the law may promote it within specific boundaries.
Where Society tolerates an action, the law may condemn it within specific boundaries.
Where Society condemns an action, the law will condemn it.

What's interesting is that I agree completely with this, but think it shows perfectly well the distinctions between tolerance and promotion -- AND emphasizes that the purpose of the law is to recognize shades of grey, not merely force everything into black and white. The mere presence of the clause "within specific boundaries" admits to and emphasizes the purpose of the law: to identify grey areas, define them, and work within them to recognize legal distinctions where social distinctions exist.

If the purpose of the law were to make everything either black or white, we would not have lawyers or juries. It's precisely because the purpose of the law is to define the grey areas that we do. [Smile]

[ January 06, 2005, 12:46 PM: Message edited by: TomDavidson ]
 
Posted by DonaldD (Member # 1052) on :
 
I would argue that the Law does not and should not condemn every action that "Society" condemns (whatever "society" is). If society means "a large majority of the population", this is exactly why there is a bill of rights. I am sure that US "society" condemns the worship of Satan, but the law neither comdemns nor promotes it.
 
Posted by flydye45 (Member # 2004) on :
 
Tolerance is accepting something you cannot change without winning a phyrric victory.

Nodding with a smile and a slightly disapproving cluck as you and your daughter find a couple in flagrante delicto is at worst condoning.

Offering suggestions or making a joke is promoting it.

Yelling at the couple or telling your daughter they are doing a naughty thing is tolerating it.

Calling a cop, trying to take the law into your own hands, or calling a Marge Simpson town meeting is prohibiting it.


Tom,

I am not a mormon. Are you suggesting that kids do have judgement? That is the whole point of parenthood, civilizing kids.

JL

Different shades of lipsticks on different girls and every boy has a canvas. Do I need to be clearer? Tom says it's false, a lady I know and someone on the forum says it's not. Believe who you will. I still have problems thinking of thirteen year olds doing such things AT ALL, much less so artistically and en mass.
 
Posted by FiredrakeRAGE (Member # 1224) on :
 
Ed -

I disagree. Law does not make 'grey' shades of anything; society does that on it's own. An example would be alcohol use. While it is legal for anyone over 21, there is a social stigma against overindulgence in some parts of society. This leads to tolerance, but not outright condemnation. In other parts of society (specifically some colleges), alcohol use is viewed as a good thing - promotion if you will. Despite this promotion, even college students tend to impose some social limits on alcohol use. It is good to drink at parties, bad to drink alone, bad to drink to excess during weekdays.

A law prohibiting drinking on campus would remove all those shades of grey - if enforced. However, those shades of grey would, while not as obvious, still exist.

The main reason prohibition failed is people believing that anything which is not specifically allowed must be condemned. The law did not institute 'shades of grey', but instead acted as a damper across the entire sphere of influence. This backfired because society tended not to view drinking as bad, merely drinking to excess as bad.

Society itself acts to add 'shades of grey'. The law acts to make black and white within its sphere of influence. Murder, for example is bad. However, murder in self defense is good. Therefore the scope of murder legislation was limited to a large degree - removing prosecution from those who kill in self-defense.

Legislation makes everything within its sphere of influence a binary event. You're either a 1 or a 0. Guilty or not guilty. The moment we involve government, we remove the responsibility from ourselves and place it on the shoulders of government. The less responsibility a citizen takes for his/her own actions, the less power those citizens will ultimately have.

--Firedrake
 
Posted by TomDavidson (Member # 99) on :
 
"Yelling at the couple or telling your daughter they are doing a naughty thing is tolerating it."

Hm. I would actually consider this condemnation. Toleration is, in fact, walking by silently.
 
Posted by FiredrakeRAGE (Member # 1224) on :
 
The former is condemnation, the latter tolerance.

--Firedrake
 
Posted by EDanaII (Member # 1062) on :
 
@ TomDavidson

Close, Tom, but no cigar...

Law, _the written law,_ clearly defines issues as black and white. Lawyers, juries, and judges exist only to determine if the case in question fits within those legal boundaries, and, therefore, to render it into black and white.

As to "specific boundaries" those are only the clearly defined areas where something may be considered to be black or white.

I'll expound further in my points to Firedrake.

You're absolutely right in that law must recognize shades of grey, I never said otherwise. What I did say is that in order to _render judgement,_ it must define legal issues as black and white, and that must include knowing where the grey areas are.


@ FiredrakeRAGE

Consider your point about drinking. When a law defines alcohol as illegal, it becomes black and white. If you drink, black. If you don't white. Now, add drinking under the age of 21. If you drink, grey. If you don't, white. If you drink and are over 21, white. If you aren't, black.

Now, let's add the operation of a vehicle. If you are drinking, black -- age is irrelevent.

Without making these kind of determinations, the law cannot render punishment. And, in order to make those determinations, it must clearly define the issues in no uncertain terms; it must be made black and white.

It's that simple.

quote:
Murder, for example is bad. However, murder in self defense is good. Therefore the scope of murder legislation was limited to a large degree - removing prosecution from those who kill in self-defense
Except that there is no such thing as "murder in self defense." Murder, by definition, does not include self defense.

To look at it properly, you must look at it this way: Have you killed? Grey. Was it self defense? Yes, white. No, grey. Did you intend to kill the person (malice)? Yes, guilty of murder. No, grey. Could the killing have been prevented? No, white - it was an accident. Yes, black - guilty of manslaughter, you should have behaved more responsibly.

The legal process does not stop at grey. It continues until it concludes black or white. Once you enter the legally defined realms of Self Defence or accidental death, this issue is rendered white. If Manslaugher or Murder, it is black and you will be punished accordingly.


@ All

Now, let's consider the promotion of alcohol towards the underaged. Black, black and black. And this INCLUDES tolerating or condoning. If you have a party, and teenagers are drinking the beer that they brought, YOU will be in trouble because you are, by virtue of effect, promoting alcohol; you did not condemn its use. And arguing that they brought the alcohol will not save your butt.

Ed.
 
Posted by TomDavidson (Member # 99) on :
 
"Law, _the written law,_ clearly defines issues as black and white. Lawyers, juries, and judges exist only to determine if the case in question fits within those legal boundaries, and, therefore, to render it into black and white."

Nope. You have clearly never heard of sentencing. [Smile]

The whole reason that mandatory sentencing is so disliked by sensible people is that it attempts to turn the law -- which is completely preoccupied with meticulously identifying the thin boundaries of thousands of shades of grey -- into something that only sees in black and white.

Again, the role of law is NOT to establish black and white; it's to establish exactly what types of grey are out there. Once those types are identified, the law only then becomes binary -- in that it finally classifies an action as either being of that shade or not. But the action being criminalized is almost never a black/white choice, but rather a specific shading of some sort.

---------

"If you have a party, and teenagers are drinking the beer that they brought, YOU will be in trouble because you are, by virtue of effect, promoting alcohol; you did not condemn its use."

Your use of this example actually proves my case for me, because it was necessary for lawmakers to specifically criminalize the toleration of alcohol use by minors in the presence of an adult before adults could be tried for anything but negligence. Ergo, society considers alcohol use by minors so bad that it even considers the tolerance of alcohol use to be an action that is, independently of the first act, itself deserving of punishment.

This doesn't mean that toleration is promotion; it means that toleration is, in this case, considered criminal in itself. (If you would doubt this, note that buying alcohol for a minor, offering alcohol to a minor, and even advertising alcohol to minors are all crimes punishable with OTHER punishments; allowing a minor to drink alcohol in your house receives a completely dfferent -- and less serious -- treatment.)

[ January 08, 2005, 09:18 PM: Message edited by: TomDavidson ]
 
Posted by FiredrakeRAGE (Member # 1224) on :
 
EDanall -

With regard to drinking - The law states that drinking under 21 is bad. The law states nothing about drinking over 21. Society and societal standards make drinking over 21 bad (or drinking to excess at least) - the law has nothing to do with it.

With regard to murder - When I say 'scope', I mean 'area which is addressed by the law'. In the case of self-defense, it is not murder, and is not addressed by the law. This puts it firmly in the 'white' area. Societal standards can (in some cases) put it in the grey area. An example would be a police officer killing someone that he felt might harm him, but was in fact harmless. While the law defines him as 'not guilty', a great many of the people in his community feel that he committed a wrong. Others might feel he acted with prudence.

A porn store might be 'ok' by the law, but it is very 'grey' by community standards. The law does not address these porn shops. The moment the law does address them, the law tries to force a porn store into either 'white' (within the law), or 'black' (outside the law). There is no grey area.

To summarize, the law creates black and white - guilty or not guilty, with innocence presumed for those unaddressed by the law. Societal standards make a 'grey' area.

--Firedrake
 
Posted by FiredrakeRAGE (Member # 1224) on :
 
TomDavidson -

I disagree with your thoughts on the party and alcohol issue. The law does not address tolerance or promotion. The law, in that case, makes a present adult responsible for the actions of the minors. The minors broke a law for drinking, but because the adult was responsible for them, the adult is charged with the crime.

I personally believe that law is some Senator's reelection hobby. Children are the responsibility of the parent. When the parent places them under the protection of another individual, they become, to a degree, the responsbility of that individual. In this case an adult merely has to be present to be responsible for the actions of a minor. That does not strike me as either right or fair.

--Firedrake
 
Posted by Danzig (Member # 1358) on :
 
Welcome to drug laws!
 
Posted by TomDavidson (Member # 99) on :
 
"I personally believe that law is some Senator's reelection hobby."

Oh, I agree completely that it's a bad law. [Smile]
 
Posted by EDanaII (Member # 1062) on :
 
@ TomDavidson

Three points.

First.

I'm not talking about sentencing, you are. I was talking about "Legal Definitions," specifically:
quote:
The act of making clear and distinct: a definition of one's intentions.
AKA, "making black and white."

Second.

quote:
Again, the role of law is NOT to establish black and white; it's to establish exactly what types of grey are out there. Once those types are identified, the law only then becomes binary -- in that it finally classifies an action as either being of that shade or not.
You are saying exactly what I am saying.

But you are misinterpreting it by putting the cart before the horse. That grey exists is why the law exists: to render that grey into black and white for the purposes of resolving the issue.

You think I'm wrong? Then show me how a legal definition does not "make clear and distinct" a grey issue.

I've already illustrated how it does in my points to Firedrake, so that should be easy. Just show me how those points are wrong.

Third.

I did not say that tolerating is promoting. I said that tolerating can be _viewed_ as a form of promotion, as it does nothing to stop a particular action. I added some qualifiers, which you seem to be ignoring. In fact, as best I can tell, you seem to be a little "black and white" in your interpretation of that point.


@ FiredrakeRAGE

I'm afraid we are talking about two different things here, and, unfortunately, your position is not taking a critical point into account: the LAW IS AN EXTENSION OF what SOCIETY wishes.

First comes society, then comes the law.

Your distinction that society sees it as grey, does nothing to counter the point that the law must then resolve it.

That some members of society are not satisfied with the outcome does not change the fact that the law has rendered the issue into black and white: damno or absolvo; guilty or innocent.

Ed.
 
Posted by TomDavidson (Member # 99) on :
 
"You are saying exactly what I am saying.
But you are misinterpreting it by putting the cart before the horse."

I would say exactly the same thing. [Smile] The difference is that you define the process of codifying states of grey as defining new versions of black and white -- which, while correct for each specific instance, is incorrect as part of the bigger picture. This is specifically why, for example, tolerance is not promotion: because the law recognizes that those shades of grey are in fact two distinct states.

"I said that tolerating can be _viewed_ as a form of promotion, as it does nothing to stop a particular action."

Ah. But that is not the definition of promotion. It is, in fact, a definition of toleration. Toleration is, as you point out, doing nothing to stop an action. Promotion, then, can -- if we're being very generous -- be seen as a very small subset of toleration, if we're not going to create our own set of actions designed to encourage other actions.

[ January 10, 2005, 03:54 PM: Message edited by: TomDavidson ]
 
Posted by javelin (Member # 1284) on :
 
'Fraid that doesn't make sense to me, Tom - whether I agree with the whole point or not, it seems abundantly clear that the decision is guilty or not guilty - whether you broke the law or not. The punishment gets to determine the degree that you broke the law (if guilty), but you are either 0 or 1, black or white, guilty or innocent. I don't see why this is confusing.
 
Posted by TomDavidson (Member # 99) on :
 
The point is this: law exists to codify shades of grey and turn them into semi-binary decisions. And even then, thanks to the grey area of the sentencing process, being found guilty is not a binary sentence; you can be found guilty and still "get off" with a lesser sentence, or no sentence at all, depending on circumstances. Every American legal structure is designed to make shades of grey possible at every possible step in the legal process, with the notable exception of mandatory sentencing guidelines. Notice how well they work.
 
Posted by javelin (Member # 1284) on :
 
Well, I agree about mandatory sentencing guidelines, but at this point, you and EDannall are just arguing past each other - ya'all seem to be trying to argue about completely different things - EDannall is talking about guilty/not guilty, and you are talking about sentencing.
 
Posted by TomDavidson (Member # 99) on :
 
"EDannall is talking about guilty/not guilty, and you are talking about sentencing."

*nod* But he is only talking about guilty/not guilty within the context of a conversation about whether permitting an action is the same thing as promoting an action. [Smile]

My point is that the law, by distinguishing between those two categories, makes it possible for us to be found guilty of tolerating something without also being found guilty of promoting it. And, in fact, that it can even assign varying penalties depending upon how much or in what way we "tolerated" or "promoted" it.

ED was looking to make this a black and white issue based on an appeal to law; my point was that an appeal to law as an arbiter of black and white was misguided, as the institution of law specifically exists to make it possible for society to officially recognize shades of grey. From plea bargains to commuted sentences to jury trials to the distinction between felonies and misdemeanors to the increasingly severe penalties for different "degrees" of murder to the mere existence of lawyers, the establishment of law is not to rigidly enforce black and white rules of behavior but rather to serve as a razor dividing the delicate shadings of an individual case.

[ January 10, 2005, 05:06 PM: Message edited by: TomDavidson ]
 
Posted by javelin (Member # 1284) on :
 
Well, hopefully that will clear up the issue for both sides so we can move forward - I look forward to lurking some more, watching ya'all duke it out [Wink]
 
Posted by flydye45 (Member # 2004) on :
 
I would say that even sentencing could be looked at as a logic gate.

Person dead, y/n

Mitigating factor y/n

Murder y/n

first degree y/n

second degree y/n

third degree y/n

manslaughter y/n

Where is the gray?
 
Posted by flydye45 (Member # 2004) on :
 
On the sex in public.

Tolerance is accepting things you DON'T agree with. Person A condems sex acts in public. He teaches his daughter such values. But he also cautions her that it is legal in Berkley California, thus something they must "tolerate".

To make your displeasure known at their broadening the mind of six year old is purely free speech, a very libertarian idea.
 
Posted by EDanaII (Member # 1062) on :
 
@ TomDavidson
quote:
I would say exactly the same thing. [Smile] The difference is that you define the process of codifying states of grey as defining new versions of black and white -- which, while correct for each specific instance, is incorrect as part of the bigger picture. This is specifically why, for example, tolerance is not promotion: because the law recognizes that those shades of grey are in fact two distinct states.
Then please demonstrate that the following is not true:
quote:
Have you killed? Grey. Was it self defense? Yes, white. No, grey. Did you intend to kill the person (malice)? Yes, guilty of murder. No, grey. Could the killing have been prevented? No, white - it was an accident. Yes, black - guilty of manslaughter, you should have behaved more responsibly.
Which comes first here, Tom? The sentencing? Or the legal definition? In order to be sentenced, you must first be condemned.

quote:
Ah. But that is not the definition of promotion. It is, in fact, a definition of toleration. Toleration is, as you point out, doing nothing to stop an action. Promotion, then, can -- if we're being very generous -- be seen as a very small subset of toleration, if we're not going to create our own set of actions designed to encourage other actions.
Once more, please demonstrate that this is not true:
Specifically, the last point. Please show us where the law would treat the toleration of child alcohol use any different from promoting child alcohol use. Do tell us what those mitigating factors might be.

As Flydye points points out, even sentencing can be binary as it uses the facts learned in the trial phase to determine sentence.

Ed.
 
Posted by TomDavidson (Member # 99) on :
 
"Which comes first here, Tom? The sentencing? Or the legal definition? In order to be sentenced, you must first be condemned."

And yet, as you point out, the grey area here is the distinction between manslaughter and the condemnation of killing in general. The law makes a black/white distinction only at the second-to-last last step -- deciding whether someone is or is not guilty of manslaughter -- and even then leaves a grey area for the sentencing itself.

The point, then, is not whether "did you or did you not commit manslaughter" is a binary decision, but that "killing is wrong" is a general statement which, through the application of law, is subdivided into numerous grey areas and points of distinction.

"Where Society condemns an action, the law will condemn it."

I would argue that our Constitution specifically defends against all applications of this argument, precisely due to the difficulty of defining "society" for these purposes.
 
Posted by EDanaII (Member # 1062) on :
 
@ TomDavidson
quote:
And yet, as you point out, the grey area here is the distinction between manslaughter and the condemnation of killing in general. The law makes a black/white distinction only at the second-to-last last step -- deciding whether someone is or is not guilty of manslaughter -- and even then leaves a grey area for the sentencing itself.
And yet... The law does not apply sentence when it reaches a grey area, it does so when it reaches a black area and a black area only.

Furthermore, your point about second-to-last step is just flat out wrong. We've had this discussion before, perhaps you don't remember it, but before a person can even be charged, he has to meet the Prima Facie Burden of Evidence in order to go to trial. Guess what? This is a black and white argument. It asks, quite simply, is there enough evidence here to meet the minimal legal definition of the crime.

And sentencing does not occur until after that legal definition has been fully met. So, the law begins with a black and white decision, and it ends with a black and white decision. Sentencing is only the clean up phase of the law: the decision has been made, here is what we are going to do about it.

quote:
The point, then, is not whether "did you or did you not commit manslaughter" is a binary decision, but that "killing is wrong" is a general statement which, through the application of law, is subdivided into numerous grey areas and points of distinction.
This point does nothing to counter the argument I made earlier that the legal process does not stop until it crosses a black and white boundary. And that sentencing does not occur until it crosses a black boundary. Recognizing a grey boundary only serves to keep the process going or to conclude that there is no sufficient legal definition.

quote:
I would argue that our Constitution specifically defends against all applications of this argument, precisely due to the difficulty of defining "society" for these purposes.
And you'd be wrong.

The correct statement is "The Constitution exists to defend against _some_ applications of Societal will."

Which does nothing to counter the assertion that, where Society condemns something, the law will condemn it. It only redefines the statement to be, "Where Society condemns something, the law may condemn it within certain boundaries."

So, all the Constitution does is define those things that we will tolerate. Since the Constitution does not define child alcohol use and since Society condemns it. My statement remains true, "Where Society condemns something, the Law will condemn it."

You still have not risen to the challenge I gave you. You have not demonstrated that the law does not use legal definitions to render black and white and that the law is an extension of society's wishes.

Ed.
 
Posted by TomDavidson (Member # 99) on :
 
"You have not demonstrated that the law does not use legal definitions to render black and white and that the law is an extension of society's wishes."

But this isn't your point, ED, or at least not the point I'm arguing about. [Smile] If that's what YOU'RE arguing about, you're arguing with yourself about something completely irrelevant to this topic.

I have already rather thoroughly addressed the flaws in applying an appeal to law to the distinction between tolerance and condemnation, which was the topic of this digression.

If you would like to concede that you're discussing irrelevancies, I'll happily agree with you. [Smile]

[ January 11, 2005, 12:06 PM: Message edited by: TomDavidson ]
 
Posted by EDanaII (Member # 1062) on :
 
This particular digression started when you made this argument: "*laugh* So you're saying that there's no such thing as a shade of gray on your planet? That if we aren't actively pushing to make something illegal, we're effectively promoting it?"

You introduced the topic, not me. It was, BTW, an argument I wasn't even making.

In the eyes of the law, if you tolerate or condone alcohol use towards children, you will be punished no differently than if you promoted it. It makes no exceptions. None. It is black and white; there is no grey here.

Ed.
 
Posted by TomDavidson (Member # 99) on :
 
"In the eyes of the law, if you tolerate or condone alcohol use towards children, you will be punished no differently than if you promoted it."

And as I pointed out, this is SPECIFICALLY wrong. The penalties for promoting alcohol use by children are in fact considerably different than the penalties for tolerating alcohol use in children. And, in fact, there WOULD be no penalties for merely tolerating alcohol use in children if we had not specifically criminalized the toleration itself, thus making the mere act of tolerance in this case something that we refuse to tolerate.

My point is not that you introduced a digression; it's that I introduced a digression to contradict a false claim of yours, and you have since misunderstood the point of the digression. [Smile]

[ January 11, 2005, 01:10 PM: Message edited by: TomDavidson ]
 
Posted by EDanaII (Member # 1062) on :
 
Examples, please?

Ed.
 
Posted by Robespierre (Member # 1313) on :
 
Full on individualist, anarcho-libertarian.

I believe there exists a natural right to total ownerships of one's own body and labors. From this, basic property rights can be divised, which can describe all the moral conditions necessary for a complex society. Note that I do not include specific values, only the aknowledgement that all individuals have a unique subjective valuation of all things.
 
Posted by EDanaII (Member # 1062) on :
 
Followup...

I looked up the [url= http://www.azleg.state.az.us/FormatDocument.asp?inDoc=/ars/4/00241.htm&Title=4&DocType=ARS] Arizona Statutes on Drinking[/url] and found the following:
quote:

G. A person who knowingly influences the sale, giving or serving of spirituous liquor to a person under the legal drinking age by misrepresenting the age of such person or who orders, requests, receives or procures spirituous liquor from any licensee, employee or other person with the intent of selling, giving or serving it to a person under the legal drinking age is guilty of a class 1 misdemeanor.

H. A person who is of legal drinking age and who is an occupant of unlicensed premises is guilty of a class 1 misdemeanor if both of the following apply:
  1. Such person knowingly allows a gathering on such unlicensed premises of two or more persons who are under the legal drinking age and who are neither:
    1. Members of the immediate family of such person.
    2. Permanently residing with such person.
  2. Such person knows or should know that one or more of the persons under the legal drinking age is in possession of or consuming spirituous liquor on the unlicensed premises.

I. For purposes of subsection H of this section, "occupant" means a person who has legal possession or the legal right to exclude others from the unlicensed premises.

So, in other words, anyone who sells or gives (promotes) alcohol AND anyone who knowingly allows (tolerates or condones) the use by a minor, that they are not directly responsible for, are guilty of a class 1 misdemeanor.

There is one other exception, not covered in this statute: drinking for religious services, although I expect that if such services were "abused" charges would be brought. Just as I expect a guardian to be charged if they abuse the privilege.

Ed.

Edit: Tried to fix URL. Not working.

[ January 14, 2005, 12:49 PM: Message edited by: EDanaII ]
 
Posted by TomDavidson (Member # 99) on :
 
"So, in other words, anyone who sells or gives (promotes) alcohol AND anyone who knowingly allows (tolerates or condones) the use by a minor, that they are not directly responsible for, are guilty of a class 1 misdemeanor."

*nod* Although not all states maintain equivalent punishments for these two offenses, you make my point for me by illustrating that, even in a state which DOES do so, it is necessary for them to make the distinction between the two. That they list toleration and promotion as two separate conditions -- even in a state which explicitly chooses to punish them in the same way -- helps to prove, IMO, that they are two separate conditions. [Smile]
 
Posted by EDanaII (Member # 1062) on :
 
I ask for examples from you. You produce none.

I produce an example which supports my argument, and YOU'RE still right.

Whatever you say, Tom.

[Roll Eyes]

Ed.

I met my burden. I'm still waiting for you to meet yours...
 
Posted by WarrsawPact (Member # 1275) on :
 
We need Tom Bailey back... now.
 
Posted by TomDavidson (Member # 99) on :
 
"I produce an example which supports my argument, and YOU'RE still right."

Because you continue to misunderstand my argument.

My argument is and has always been that tolerance is not the same thing as promotion.

To claim that it is, you cite a law which SPECIFICALLY applies the same penalty to tolerance that it applies to promotion. The law would not do that if it were unnecessary -- if, in other words, those two actions were already morally equivalent and/or synonymous.
 
Posted by Dave at Work (Member # 1906) on :
 
EDanaII,

I haven't followed this thread since early on, but looking over the last several posts I would have to say that TomDavidson is correct about something that you are either obtuse to or trying to obfuscate. tolerance of an activity and promotion of an activity are two seperate things.

You provided an example in an effort to show that they are the same, but your example clearly shows that they are separate things which have the same penalty. Paragraph G describes someone who promotes underage drinking by providing or facilitating the provision of alchohol to a minor, while paragraph H describes someone who tolerates underage drinking by knowingly allowing the underage drinking to occur. Paragraph I further modifies the liability of the person described in paragraph H to persons who have legal possession or the legal right to exclude others from the unlicensed premises. Therefore only certain types of tolerance are subject to this law. This law clearly treats promotion and tolerance of underage drinking as seperate, though related, things even though the punishment is the same.
 
Posted by FiredrakeRAGE (Member # 1224) on :
 
WarrsawPact -

You should look up his e-mail on his campaign site and invite him back.

--Firedrake
 
Posted by Danzig (Member # 1358) on :
 
No Ed, you gave an example which supports Tom's argument. So for that and other reasons, he is still right.
 
Posted by EDanaII (Member # 1062) on :
 
Ummm... Guys?

My assertion was that "Tolerating or condoning may be viewed as a from of promotion." I even pointed to a specific example of law, where tolerating and promoting would be punished equally, ergo, it is viewed by law as the same thing.

Tom was arguing that they could not be viewed as the same because the law punishes them differntly.

And here is an example of Az law where the law punishes both equally.

Furthermore, I did not say Tom was wrong. I was challenging how he could assert himself to be right without backing himself up with say... An example of Indiana law, which he did assert earlier, was different.

That Az law defines both seperately is not the point. The point is that, since the both are punished equally, both can be viewed, by virtue of their effect, as the same.

Ed.

P.S. I'm done arguing the point, comfortable in my assertion that the law will punish you equally for tolerating or promoting where society condemns an action.

[ January 15, 2005, 01:32 PM: Message edited by: EDanaII ]
 
Posted by TomDavidson (Member # 99) on :
 
"I'm done arguing the point, comfortable in my assertion that the law will punish you equally for tolerating or promoting where society condemns an action."

Except that this is not universally true. Society will punish you equally for tolerating and promoting an action only when toleration itself is seen as something harmful. As I pointed out, the mere fact that the AZ law makes the distinction despite imposing the same penalty suggests that society recognizes the distinction and, in this unique case, has gone to the unusual extreme of passing a law to criminalize both.
 
Posted by Revel (Member # 2257) on :
 
And back to the idea of, 'How Libertarian are you?" we've determined that...
 
Posted by EDanaII (Member # 1062) on :
 
OK. I lied. [Wink]

@ TomDavidson:
quote:
Except that this is not universally true.
I never said otherwise.

quote:
Society will punish you equally for tolerating and promoting an action only when toleration itself is seen as something harmful. As I pointed out, the mere fact that the AZ law makes the distinction despite imposing the same penalty suggests that society recognizes the distinction and, in this unique case, has gone to the unusual extreme of passing a law to criminalize both.
Tom? You really gotta stop walking into these things.

Indiana Law - Aiding unlawful possesion:
quote:
IC 7.1-5-7-15
Sec. 15. A person twenty-one (21) years of age or older who knowingly or intentionally encourages, aids, or induces a minor to unlawfully possess an alcoholic beverage commits a Class C infraction.

In this statute, Indiana makes _no distinction_ between the two. So all you have pointed out is a difference in the structure of Arizona vs. Indiana law.


@ Revel

Yea, but that whole "How Libertarian are you?" thing was getting boring anyway. [Wink]

Ed.
 
Posted by TomDavidson (Member # 99) on :
 
"In this statute, Indiana makes _no distinction_ between the two."

Except that the cited statute doesn't apply to toleration at all. Notice the wording: "encourages, aids, or induces." These are all forms of promotion.
 
Posted by DonaldD (Member # 1052) on :
 
quote:
Except that the cited statute (Indiana's)doesn't apply to toleration at all. – TomDavidson
In the minds of the Arizona legislature, their statute probably applies to promotion, not toleration, as well. By providing a safe haven for the illegal activity, the occupant arguably promotes the activity. This is significantly different from simply being present at the party as a guest and tolerating the activity. “Providing” in this case is not a passive act. Regardless of whether you consider providing safe haven to be promotion, note that as per the Arizona statute, tolerating underage drinking as a guest is specifically excluded and is not illegal.

Note the previous sentence: Toleration <> Promotion.

This is completely irrelevant to the secondary (tertiary?) digression anyway, which I believe was crystallized when Ed requested of Tom
quote:
Once more, please demonstrate that this is not true: … Please show us where the law would treat the toleration of child alcohol use any different from promoting child alcohol use.
Firstly, even if Ed’s example was correct and convincing, it would do nothing to prove his point: namely, that when society condemns specific actions, its laws also condemn universally. An example could be used to illustrate or disprove a theory, but only by universally exhausting the complete set of possible examples could examples be used to prove the theory. Any example, (not necessarily child drinking) could be used for the purpose of disproving.

Secondly, the example has nothing to do with the thesis. The thesis talks about Society and law, whereas the example goes to proving the equivalence of two words, or possibly of two articles within a law.

In this case, Ed, how do you define “Society”?
 


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