Jeffrey Haber haber at sb.fsu.edu
Tue May 19 16:40:02 EST 1998

react at ix.netcom.com wrote:
> Your response may be a misinterpretation of my statement insofar as
> 'excuse' means an insufficient argument used to justify an action.  I
> had no intent of implying responsibility.  Now that the issue has been
> raise, however, what do you mean by 'forcibly'?  If you advocate,and
> through a political procedure impliment, policy which is detrimental to
> others, are you 'responsible' for the detrimental effects?  Since your
> policy in such a case is implemented by law, are you 'forcibly' enacting
> this policy?

Yes, I think that if you advocate a policy which violates the rights of
others that you are morally responsible.

> I think that you will find, in practice, that in Capitalist economies,
> no more and no less than in Socialist or Communist economies, the
> function of protecting the rights of the individual and regulating the
> exchange of value are inseperable.

Can you give me an example?  Does that example entail the government's
telling someone else what to do with their property and lives? 

>  Perhaps this can be made evident
> without specific example by considering that Capitalism and a free
> market are distinct entities, in that either may exist without the
> other.

You cannot have capitalism without a free market; it is implicit in the
definition of capitalism that the government is not regulating the

>  Thus Capitalist interests may also regulate the exchange of
> value, control the production and distribution of wealth without the
> need of government to do so.  This description correlates with a
> prinicpal objection forwarded by Capitalists in reference to government
> powers under Socialism, yet the difference is little more than the label
> we give to the controlling factions, i.e. government or Capitalists.

Who are these "Capitalist interests"?  What exactly are they doing, and
is it consistent with the principle of non-initiation of force?


> To see this in action, I think one need go no farther than Indonesia,
> where the IMF forced the government to defer its own economic response
> in favor of a plan developed by the IMF.  The tool for implementing this
> deferral was the threat of economic sanctions, and the plan included a
> significant fuel price increase.  Such threats are a major weapon of
> Capitalism, and without government regulation this tool may be used at
> the discretion of the Capitalists.  A domestic example is the common
> practice by large corporations of eliciting tax concessions from states
> and municipalities under threat of removing their businesses elsewhere.
> I am not judging this practice here, but pointing out that it exists,
> and that it represents a power concentration inherent in Capitalism
> which both parallels that of government and, if unrestrained, could
> certainly be used against the interests of the public.

We're talking around each other; we're using the same words, different

Capitalism is not the same as "business interests", though it is in the
businessman's interest to live under capitalism.  Under capitalism the
government has nothing at all to do with the economy, it's only function
would be to have a military (to protect against invasion), police, and
courts (period).  Businesses would have no interest in trying to
manipulate the government since the government would have no interest in
manipulating them.  Since the IMF is funded by taxes, stolen wealth, it
is inconsistent with a capitalist government.  (In a capitalist society,
the government would be funded by voluntary donations, perhaps with a
fee for service element like requiring contracts to have a stamp in
order for them to be valid in court.)

For the capitalist viewpoint on what capitalism really is, not what
you've heard from pragmatic advocates of the mixed economy who were
taught by Marxist intellectuals in the universities, but from real
radicals who support it, I recommend Ayn Rand's anthology Capitalism:
the Unknown Ideal.

	Jeffrey Haber

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