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Author Topic: Politics is an immoral dead-end  (Read 60008 times)

shyfrog

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Re: Politics is an immoral dead-end
« Reply #75 on: November 13, 2007, 11:27 AM NHFT »

I have heard it said that political activity (i.e. voting, running for office, involvement in campaigns) is the most effective way to achieve our goal of a free society.  Some go so far as to suggest it is the only way.  I could not disagree more.

Yay, freedom! You are free to disagree. Go you. woot!

I struggle to understand how, in one breath, some libertarians will condemn the State and all its machinations, and in another, will endorse the very mechanism the State uses to perpetuate itself: politics.  The contradiction is plain to see yet rarely remedied. 

Sounds like a personal problem. We all struggle in our own ways. I'll opine that your definition of how things are, will undoubtedly be challenged and perhaps even modified, changed, and either improved or worsened over time.

So here is my humble request: I ask everyone currently involved in political activities (including the so-called Ron Paul Revolution) either to renounce said activities or to provide an airtight moral justification for their actions.  Although I do not intend to be mean-spirited, nor to dampen the enthusiasm of my fellow freedom-lovers, I must insist on consistency and moral rectitude: the path to freedom does not lie inside the voting booth or the statehouse, and those who seek it in those places only make the journey more difficult for the rest of us.

Humble request or insist? You sound confused. Are you sure your path is the absolute best path for everyone? Or is it just your personal view as an individual? Moral rectitude? What is this...church? Preach away brother, preach away *yawn*

Stop labeling people. It belies sound reason.

Here, I'll save you the trouble:
I'm a fundamentalist mormon, anarcho-capitalist bordering on minarchist, with a penchant for polygamy, constitutionalism and leaving people well-enough alone to make their own personal choices.

It's nice to get together and talk about it now and then over good eats and drink.

I have two constant beliefs that drive me and never change:
1. Change is inevitable (except from vending machines)
2. Liberty requires action (freedom with responsibility)

 :soapbox:
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Rocketman

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Re: Politics is an immoral dead-end
« Reply #76 on: November 13, 2007, 11:42 AM NHFT »

I will be happy to explain my position on all this when I have time, perhaps tonight.  When I do so, I will defend my position quite strenuously -- not out of contempt for the individuals who truly believe some of my actions on behalf of liberty are immoral, but in the hope I will be able to illuminate the flaws and fallacies in Vitruvian's position.

(Hell, Braddogg still likes me, I think.   :D)

Kept on that philosophical level, I think this is an important debate, one which will probably have to happen every so often... or at least, as often as some feel the need to discourage others from doing anything (*GASP*) "political."
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Vitruvian

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Re: Politics is an immoral dead-end
« Reply #77 on: November 13, 2007, 11:49 AM NHFT »

Quote
Humble request or insist? You sound confused. Are you sure your path is the absolute best path for everyone? Or is it just your personal view as an individual? Moral rectitude? What is this...church? Preach away brother, preach away *yawn*

Stop labeling people. It belies sound reason.

If someone were to steal my wallet, I would not hesitate to "label" him or her a thief; any other name would be dishonest.

Once again, I do not claim that my method is the One True Method nor did I start this thread to flatter my own ego.  My aim is to dissuade others from employing immoral and obfuscatory methods.
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J’raxis 270145

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Re: Politics is an immoral dead-end
« Reply #78 on: November 13, 2007, 12:08 PM NHFT »

Quote
Humble request or insist? You sound confused. Are you sure your path is the absolute best path for everyone? Or is it just your personal view as an individual? Moral rectitude? What is this...church? Preach away brother, preach away *yawn*

Stop labeling people. It belies sound reason.

If someone were to steal my wallet, I would not hesitate to "label" him or her a thief; any other name would be dishonest.

Now suppose that someone was trying to help you get the contents of your wallet back, but could only do so a dollar or two at a time, due to circumstances beyond his control. Would you rebuff his efforts and call him a thief, too? That’s a good analogy for what we’re trying to do with the political system.
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srqrebel

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Re: Politics is an immoral dead-end
« Reply #79 on: November 13, 2007, 12:17 PM NHFT »

Wow, I don't read the forum for a day and a half, and a very timely six-page thread emerges :o

It is timely, because only through open and honest communication can we hope to understand each others' points of view and have any sense of unity, or at least agree to disagree without hard feelings.  Refusing to communicate, even in a drawn out debate, can only engender feelings of negativity in those who honestly seek a better understanding and/or a mutual resolution of differences.

The way I see it, there are three courses of action you can take for any given law that interferes with your freedom:—

  • Ignore it, hoping you don’t eventually get caught, until the State finally collapses
  • Follow it, until the State finally collapses
  • Try to repeal it as soon as possible, so you’re a bit more free until the State finally collapses

Or, focus on collapsing the State itself, and then all the bad laws will go away.

I agree: less force is preferable to more force.  But I will not be the cause of either one.

Complementary to less force is more liberty. As we work to decrease force from more to less, we’re increasing liberty. Thus, it unfortunately seems you don’t want to be the cause of more liberty, either.

This sounds good on the surface, and seems to be the main reasoning in favor of acting within the power structure of the State.  There may, however, be a fallacy here that has not yet been mentioned in this thread:

An analogy that is often used to describe how the relatively free system instituted by the founding fathers managed to degenerate into the present 1984-style situation, is the boiling frogs analogy...

At least IMO, the reason that we have the present-day freedom movement, is because the powers that be (esp. Bush and co.) have been turning up the heat too fast for comfort.  My hypothesis is that the degree of general desire for freedom is directly proportionate to the degree of acceleration of tyranny... otherwise, the boiling frogs analogy is incorrect.

Based on this hypothesis, there is a very strong argument to be made that the best thing that can happen to the freedom movement is for the State to grow by leaps and bounds until it self-destructs.  The faster the heat gets turned up, the greater the number of frogs that will abandon the kettle altogether.  On the other hand for instance, if Ron Paul gets elected president, just the opposite will likely occur: Those who want freedom but still see their salvation in politics (a large cross-section of the freedom movement!) will go back to sleep, and the wind will leave the sails of the freedom movement.  Government will continue to grow, only now it will be growing at a pace that is comfortable to a greater number of people, and the goal of a Stateless society will be set back by decades.

By your choice of methods, we’d all be sitting around with Jim Crow laws still on the books, until the state as a whole collapses. People would of course be free to opt out and drop out, but every now and then the State would keep coming along and crushing people with these odious laws.

Absolutely... and we would be much closer to the genuine collapse of the State, because all those affected by these laws would see the State for the immoral institution that it really is, instead of worshipping it as they now do.

« Last Edit: November 13, 2007, 01:04 PM NHFT by srqrebel »
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Vitruvian

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Re: Politics is an immoral dead-end
« Reply #80 on: November 13, 2007, 12:25 PM NHFT »

Quote
Now suppose that someone was trying to help you get the contents of your wallet back, but could only do so a dollar or two at a time, due to circumstances beyond his control. Would you rebuff his efforts and call him a thief, too? That’s a good analogy for what we’re trying to do with the political system.

The problem with this analogy is that "your" dollars, the ones that were stolen from you, are spent, lost, and in any case, gone long before you are given any chance to retrieve them. Any money you are able to recover through the political means has been stolen from others.  It is not your money.

Quote
Based on this hypothesis, there is a very strong argument to be made that the best thing that can happen to the freedom movement is for the State to grow by leaps and bounds until it self-destructs.  The faster the heat gets turned up, the greater the number of frogs that will abandon the kettle altogether.  On the other hand for instance, if Ron Paul gets elected president, just the opposite will likely occur: Those who want freedom but still see their salvation in politics (a large cross-section of the freedom movement!) will go back to sleep, and the wind will leave the sails of the freedom movement.  Government will continue to grow, only now it will be growing at a pace that is comfortable to a greater number of people, and the goal of a Stateless society will be set back by decades.

I am inclined to agree, though I do not particularly want to experience the horrors of totalitarianism.  However, that must be the end result if the State is allowed continued existence: the utter destruction of society.



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David

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Re: Politics is an immoral dead-end
« Reply #81 on: November 13, 2007, 12:29 PM NHFT »

Srgrebel<
Quote from: J’raxis 270145 on Today at 02:09 AM
By your choice of methods, we’d all be sitting around with Jim Crow laws still on the books, until the state as a whole collapses. People would of course be free to opt out and drop out, but every now and then the State would keep coming along and crushing people with these odious laws.

Absolutely... and we would be much closer to the genuine collapse of the State, because all those affected by these laws would see the State for the immoral institution that it really is, instead of worshipping it as they now do.>
The difference between the mafia and the gov't, is the gov't is seen as legitamate.  gov'ts lose their legitamacy slowly all the time, the telling result is peoples willingness to challenge it.  This sometimes manifests itself in war, civil war or just violence due to sudden gov't collapse.  But it occurs nonviolently as well.  People need to see the ugliness inherit with gov't, it is not their friend or ally.  The sooner the better. 
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dalebert

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Re: Politics is an immoral dead-end
« Reply #82 on: November 13, 2007, 12:49 PM NHFT »

My personal view is I cannot in good conscience justify helping to put a person in a position of power over others. No matter how much I like the person, and I like Ron Paul a lot, I still don't think they should have power over other people. It would feel incredibly hypocritical of me (personally) to speak out against such a system and then to participate in it. If Ron Paul ever in any way uses his position of power for anything other than to roll back that power, the proverbial blood would be on my hands too. For instance consider if he ever like, built a fence and put armed people at it to keep people from crossing or something kooky like that or if he supported any form of theft (a.k.a. taxes).  ;) Now that line seems unfuzzy to me and I don't feel comfortable crossing it.

What seems a little more fuzzy is voting on a specific policy that ONLY rolls back power. That gets a little more complicated. I still don't feel comfortable getting directly involved in that while speaking out against the political process. I don't really mind watching from the sidelines. While I don't approve of the actions taken, I can't help but hope that they will result in something good.

Consider this. I consider police officers to be criminals. If a police officer gets killed in a drug raid, I consider that a fortunate event. Heck if some crazy kooks took it upon themselves to take out some police officers, I wouldn't even mourn them ( present company excluded of course ;) ). However, I WILL NOT go out and kill police officers. Don't ask me to.

So basically, while I'm not going to give you political types kudos for going out and proverbially "shooting at the bad stuph", I will admit to a certain guilty pleasure if you somehow manage to accomplish something good. The way I see it, I'm not likely to be able to talk you into stopping what you're doing, so I will be grateful that at least your tactics are less immoral than most and I'll simply defend my decision not to join in the activities when I'm pressured to do so.

I actually hope Ron Paul is our next president because he'll be a lot less evil than most, while at the same time I will not vote for him or donate any money to his campaign. Some little part of me will be rooting for you guys. It's like you have a fire hose that I can't turn off so I just hope you are minimally destructive with it. Does that make sense?
« Last Edit: November 13, 2007, 12:54 PM NHFT by dalebert »
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toowm

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Re: Politics is an immoral dead-end
« Reply #83 on: November 13, 2007, 12:58 PM NHFT »

So here is my humble request: I ask everyone currently involved in political activities (including the so-called Ron Paul Revolution) either to renounce said activities or to provide an airtight moral justification for their actions.  Although I do not intend to be mean-spirited, nor to dampen the enthusiasm of my fellow freedom-lovers, I must insist on consistency and moral rectitude: the path to freedom does not lie inside the voting booth or the statehouse, and those who seek it in those places only make the journey more difficult for the rest of us.
I reject homogeneity of thought and homogeneity of methods. Consistency is often not a virtue.

I do not need to provide anyone with a moral justification of my actions. I support every liberty-lover in whatever endeavors they themselves support. Insistence on moral rectitude would quickly divide us.

There are multiple paths to freedom -- just ask any of us about our personal journeys. If they involved political action, even if that is now rejected, are they off the "right" path? If 30 million people hear the freedom message for the first time from Ron Paul, should their experience be expunged?

I'd like to hear how political action makes your personal journey more difficult. I understand that there is competition within the movement for people to have the same beliefs, and it is disheartening to see paths you feel are wrong ascendant. What harm have we caused you?

I love a good philosophical argument, but I find myself with much less time for them now, when action of many forms gets results.
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dalebert

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Re: Politics is an immoral dead-end
« Reply #84 on: November 13, 2007, 12:59 PM NHFT »

I think I'm sounding preachier than I mean to. My post is too long. What I'm trying to say is go do what you believe to be right and don't pressure me to do it. I just want you to understand my decision and how I came to it when you ask me to donate to Ron Paul or to go vote and I decline. If you hope to persuade me otherwise, you need to understand where I'm at.
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Russell Kanning

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Re: Politics is an immoral dead-end
« Reply #85 on: November 13, 2007, 01:00 PM NHFT »

I missed the whole thread, only read part of the first post and parts of various ones continuing, but I'm going to play off of the thread title and just say:

Life is an immoral dead-end.
I love life and love traveling the neverending road. :)

Should I put this thread under peppiness? ;)
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Kat Kanning

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Re: Politics is an immoral dead-end
« Reply #86 on: November 13, 2007, 01:01 PM NHFT »

So here is my humble request: I ask everyone currently involved in political activities (including the so-called Ron Paul Revolution) either to renounce said activities or to provide an airtight moral justification for their actions.  Although I do not intend to be mean-spirited, nor to dampen the enthusiasm of my fellow freedom-lovers, I must insist on consistency and moral rectitude: the path to freedom does not lie inside the voting booth or the statehouse, and those who seek it in those places only make the journey more difficult for the rest of us.
I reject homogeneity of thought and homogeneity of methods. Consistency is often not a virtue.

I do not need to provide anyone with a moral justification of my actions. I support every liberty-lover in whatever endeavors they themselves support. Insistence on moral rectitude would quickly divide us.

There are multiple paths to freedom -- just ask any of us about our personal journeys. If they involved political action, even if that is now rejected, are they off the "right" path? If 30 million people hear the freedom message for the first time from Ron Paul, should their experience be expunged?

I'd like to hear how political action makes your personal journey more difficult. I understand that there is competition within the movement for people to have the same beliefs, and it is disheartening to see paths you feel are wrong ascendant. What harm have we caused you?

I love a good philosophical argument, but I find myself with much less time for them now, when action of many forms gets results.

Poltical action can make your personal life more difficult when you're surrounded by politicos pressuring you to do things their way.
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Russell Kanning

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Re: Politics is an immoral dead-end
« Reply #87 on: November 13, 2007, 01:02 PM NHFT »

All I will say on this subject is that if you have never made an honest effort to just sit down and chat with the more liberty-minded State Reps in New Hampshire, you're quite frankly talking out of your ass about what can and cannot be achieved by political ends.
I think you can come to the conclusion that politics is immoral without having to sit down with a politician.
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Vitruvian

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Re: Politics is an immoral dead-end
« Reply #88 on: November 13, 2007, 01:03 PM NHFT »

Quote
People need to see the ugliness inherit with gov't, it is not their friend or ally.

Absolutely.  Political action simply glosses over the ugliness, making it appear palatable.

Quote
I actually hope Ron Paul is our next president

Here I am slightly conflicted, for the reasons that srqrebel and David have mentioned.  A Ron Paul presidency, as much as I prefer it over any other outcome, would likely have the effect of lulling many into complacency, convincing them that freedom can result from politics.  And the State would live to kill another day.

Quote
I reject homogeneity of thought and homogeneity of methods. Consistency is often not a virtue.

I've said this twice already: I am not trying to direct everyone toward one and only one form of activism, only to steer some people away from political action, which I see as immoral and counterproductive.
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Russell Kanning

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Re: Politics is an immoral dead-end
« Reply #89 on: November 13, 2007, 01:04 PM NHFT »

The Iraqi insurgency seems to be doing a fine job (bloody as it is  :-\ ) of resisting the occupation.
Killing US soldiers doesn't seem like a good way to live free. All kinds of evil spring from it. :(
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