It’s 20 September

March 10th, 2014 at 5:04 pm by David Farrar

John Key has announced:

Prime Minister John Key has announced the 2014 General Election will be held on Saturday 20 September.

“I’m announcing the election date well in advance as I believe this gives New Zealanders some certainty and is in the country’s best interests.”

“It is my practice to be up-front with the New Zealand public and provide plenty of notice about election timing.”

National will be campaigning on its strong record in Government and its plans to continue the good progress New Zealand is making over the next three years.

“I am proud of the work we have done to protect vulnerable New Zealanders and help strengthen families and communities through difficult times.”

Mr Key says, “I have already contacted the Governor-General to advise him of the election date.”

The Government’s intention is that the House will rise on Thursday 31 July and Parliament will be dissolved on Thursday 14 August.

Writ day will follow on Wednesday 20 August, and nomination day will be Tuesday 26 August.

This is two elections in a row that Key has announced the date months in advance, instead of what former PMs used to do and only announce it at the last minute to try and game some tactical advantage.

The 20 September date is to allow time for a Government to be formed and have whoever is Prime Minister attend the G20 connference in Australia, as it is the only time we have been invited to attend with all the “big boys”,

Meanwhile (Young) Labour have responded in all too typical fashion to the announcement:

Young Labour fail

 

Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear. They really need to start introducing some quality control and checking to their infographics. Cunliffe tweets one that shows power prices shot up under Labour. Robertson tweets one that has a massive typo in it, and now Young Labour get the date wrong by two months! And they think they can run the country!!

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192 Responses to “It’s 20 September”

  1. gazzmaniac (2,319 comments) says:

    It looks like they got the month right in the photograph however – the 20th is a saturday in September but not November.
    Surely, surely, a little alarm bell rang when they were making this graphic?

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  2. unaha-closp (1,133 comments) says:

    Join Labour by November 20 and vote for a new leader: together we can change the Cunliffe.

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  3. David Garrett (6,660 comments) says:

    Dearie me…they obviously had these graphics all ready to go…and no-one noticed that while the DAY was right, the month was out by two months…Is this what is known as an “epic fail” these days? Or just one more instance of incompetence by the left?

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  4. Harriet (4,614 comments) says:

    Well at least it’s a start – Labour thinking ahead for once. :cool:

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  5. dishy (225 comments) says:

    A more heinous error is the misdescription of the proposed new government: they should be saying a Labour-Greens-Other Clowns government.

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  6. jaba (2,092 comments) says:

    it will be interesting how the Greenies and Labour play this election. To become Govt they will need each other BUT will fight for the same voters .. The Greens gained shit loads of Labour voters and will again need Labour to struggle .. they are not a train wreck yet but!!!!

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  7. tvb (4,234 comments) says:

    There is vety little tactical advantage to the PM trying to jeep this a secret until the last minute. This is because the National Party organisation needs to organise itself as well and by keeping the Labour Party guessing means your own party is being kept in the dark as well. It is better to rely on the superior organisational skills of your own party to win any tactical advantage.

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  8. Vader (7 comments) says:

    Conceding the election and planning a subsequent coup?

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  9. Fox (202 comments) says:

    If Labour voters stay at home in September, in anticipation of an election some two months later, I certainly wouldn’t mind at all. :)

    Perhaps Young Labour have already written off this years election, and are thinking of 20 November 2017.

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  10. ShawnLH (4,330 comments) says:

    Cripes, Labour are useless muppets.

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  11. JMS (313 comments) says:

    Labour must be hoping there isn’t a cold late winter storm on that day. In that event even the offer of free fried chicken would fail to lure many a Labour voter to the polls.

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  12. burt (7,948 comments) says:

    Buy your restaurant brand shares NOW ! ….

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  13. Steve (North Shore) (4,517 comments) says:

    20th Nov is a Thursday. Who would vote on a Thursday. Makes you wonder what is the matter with these people, do they need educating? The education they have now is pathetic

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  14. Huevon (206 comments) says:

    I’m happy if Labour supporters turn up -er, sorry, mobilise – to vote 2 months late.

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  15. edhunter (510 comments) says:

    Credit for giving plenty of notice but by the time Sept rolls around we’ll have had 9 months of electioneering. Instead of a permanent date in Sept why not change it to a say April or May on permanent basis there by giving the poor punter only 4-5 months of electioneering? Well at least it will be perceived as only 4-5 months.

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  16. NoCash (256 comments) says:

    Facepalm

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  17. David Garrett (6,660 comments) says:

    Who will they blame this one on? The MSM? Our gracious host? The PM himself perhaps, who is secure enough to be “derping” (or whatever it is) while still having a good firm grasp of the helm?

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  18. PaulL (5,968 comments) says:

    When Labour do eventually win again (hopefully not this election) it will be interesting to see if they follow the (new) tradition of announcing the date early. Certainly if they don’t it will create negative publicity at the time. I think it’s interesting how John Key is setting the agenda well into the future through simple stuff like this.

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  19. duggledog (1,415 comments) says:

    That just about sums Labour up in 2014. A complete f*** up from start to finish

    See you on the Opposition Benches David Cunliffe – on November 20th!

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  20. RF (1,322 comments) says:

    But.. But.. But. It should be 20th November. That’s the date I will voting. Stuff JK.

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  21. Colville (2,149 comments) says:

    Maybe they meant that we would be back at the polls in November after the Labour/Green/NZF/UF/Mana/Maori Party coalition explodes in the first 4 weeks of being together?

    Or is that giving them way too much credit for thunking ahead? :-)

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  22. RRM (9,603 comments) says:

    DPF: Young Labour get the date wrong by two months! And they think they can run the country!!

    You mean like Young Labour ran the country from 1999 to 2008? :-P

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  23. David Garrett (6,660 comments) says:

    duggle: what do you mean “in 2014″?? They haven’t got anything much right since the She Beast left for the UN…Phil Goof dyed his hair, bought a motorbike, and even changed his walk to try and be a leader worthy of the name…Poor Shearer had six months more experience than I had FFS before they made HIM leader of a major political party! Then you had two years of destabilising of him, and general factionalism before they finally elected Cunliffe…Has ANY leader of any party ever been elected when there has been an Anyone But X faction in the party?

    Cunliffe hasn’t dyed his hair (yet) but he has adopted a faux Maori accent; thrown barbs at Key for living in a “leafy suburb” – just like the one he lives in ; “forgotten” several secret trusts which he or Presland undoubtedly controlled…what have I missed? Who can point to ANY period since the She Beast left when they have largely got it right?

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  24. Reid (16,062 comments) says:

    They may be prepping the public for the inevitable loss, so they can blame the low Liarbore turnout on the fact their campaign hadn’t started by the time everyone else went out to vote.

    Thus preserving Dave’s and Matt’s jobs at the taxpayer teat for another three years.

    Who can point to ANY period since the She Beast left when they have largely got it right?

    Yeah but who could with the lousy stinking mess she left? She not only pulled the temple down but she left a massive stink behind in the form of the Sisterhood/Rainbow which continues to hate and wreck its way to Liarbore oblivion and it’s not going to stop until dear old Labour is well and truly dead.

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  25. ShawnLH (4,330 comments) says:

    Sept.20 to decide which group of organised criminals will be stealing from us for the next 3 years.

    The best we can hope for is that the polls are right and the criminals who want to steal slightly less from us then the rest will win.

    Depressing either way.

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  26. Ross12 (1,231 comments) says:

    Is Norman going for the most arrogant a..hole award ??

    http://nz.news.yahoo.com/a/-/top-stories/21905666/post-election-talks-could-drag-on-for-weeks-norman/

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  27. David Garrett (6,660 comments) says:

    Ross12: He is taking a lot for granted…Has Cunliffe or anyone else in L’bor said publicly that things have changed since the She Beast said the Greens would be “last cab off the rank?”

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  28. duggledog (1,415 comments) says:

    Quite right DG. I stand corrected. Ms Clark made sure there were no pretenders to the throne during her administration, and Cullen made sure there was no money left. So it’s hardly surprising is it. I bet if they ever went flatting when they were younger, these two didn’t have their names on the tenancy agreement or on the power account!

    Nonetheless I am now going to buy a cubic yard of popcorn for the night; 20/09 is the RWC of politics!

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  29. David Garrett (6,660 comments) says:

    Seriously…if the Nats run even a half decent campaign how can the socialist rabble and their fellow travellers possibly win? A government comprising Cunliffe, Norman and Hone? Or worse yet, …and Winston? They’d never last out the term, and if they did, it would have to be a one term government…Our sheeple are not quite that stupid, are they?

    The people booted out Nash in 1960 because of Nordmeyer’s budget which hit “the workers’ pleasures”…Imagine three long years of Norman whining about the environment, completely f…ing up the economy, and pushing mad communist agendas…And Hone demanding impossible policy compromises and packing a sad when he didnt get them…I suppose Lab-Winston-Greens might just last the three years given that Winston would probably be happy to have one last big suck at the bauble tit before retiring to Herne Bay…

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  30. thor42 (961 comments) says:

    September – ok then.

    I’m hoping that it’ll be *bucketing* down with rain all around the country on the day. That’ll help to keep the more lazy of Labour’s voters away from the polling-booths.

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  31. Sir Cullen's Sidekick (828 comments) says:

    Simple honest mistake. No big deal. Everybody knows the date. Just move on….Stick to the topic of the poll date announcement by Key.

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  32. David Garrett (6,660 comments) says:

    Sir Cullen: In case you hadn’t noticed, We all HAD moved on from the date faux pas..until you came back and reminded everyone of it…

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  33. deadrightkev (319 comments) says:

    Thankfully, the tea leaves are not looking good for Labour and the Greens but the long game is to build a party to the right of National functioning strongly enough to hold the left out long-term.

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  34. dime (9,607 comments) says:

    The Nats just need to be squeaky clean.

    All it took last time was a couple of grown men, “professional journalists” saying the words “tea pot tapes” over and over and the election closed right up. scary but true.

    those hacks should be ashamed of themselves too.

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  35. Zapper (949 comments) says:

    DG

    While I agree with the sentiment, don’t call her the she beast. You’re too classy for that.

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  36. chris (584 comments) says:

    Russel Norman from that Yahoo article:

    “From National’s point of view, they’re obviously in a very complicated situation, because they’ve got to rely on the Conservatives, United Future, the ACT Party, potentially New Zealand First.”

    Bwahahaha. Let’s turn that around shall we?

    “From the Green’s point of view, they’re obviously in a very complicated situation, because they’ve got to rely on Labour, Mana, the Maori party, potentially New Zealand First.”

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  37. gazzmaniac (2,319 comments) says:

    Zapper – Calling somebody “she beast” is classy when you compare it to stealing a dead infant’s identity.

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  38. Yoza (1,653 comments) says:

    Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

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  39. Zapper (949 comments) says:

    Good old Russell. They’ve got to rely on the party vote because they’ll never win an electorate. Please voters, run this Aussie commie to Venezuela, and Turei back to her ridiculous KAOS/McGillicuddy Serious/Legalise Cannabis days

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  40. gazzmaniac (2,319 comments) says:

    Yoza – Except that the monopoly buyer electricity policy won’t result in cheaper electricity and everyone knows it.

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  41. Zapper (949 comments) says:

    gazzmaniac – you’ve proven your lack of class so probably not the best person to comment

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  42. bhudson (4,736 comments) says:

    If Labour are that confident then their Campaign Strategist (Monsieur Robertson) should challenge the National Party Wellington Central candidate to a single, winner takes all debate. On the 19th of November…

    The only change of government likely under a Grant Robertson-led strategy is that which comes from natural rejuvenation through retirement of sitting (govt) MPs.

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  43. Fisiani (980 comments) says:

    194 days till the election. What will you do? It’s amazing how quickly the time will go by. My goal is to get 194 extra votes for National.

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  44. chris (584 comments) says:

    And nor will all the taxes the Greens want to pile on top of power and petrol. And guess what? That makes everything else cost more too.

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  45. gazzmaniac (2,319 comments) says:

    gazzmaniac – you’ve proven your lack of class so probably not the best person to comment

    I’ve never claimed to be classy. I don’t think DG has either.

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  46. bhudson (4,736 comments) says:

    Good old Russell. They’ve got to rely on the party vote because they’ll never win an electorate.

    The Greens and Labour have standing ‘dirty deals’ across every general and Maori electorate – with the Greens only campaigning for the Party Vote in the General Election. Yet somehow the media don’t seem to catch on to it…

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  47. Zapper (949 comments) says:

    Never said either of you did gazzmaniac. You don’t need to claim to have class to be classy. In your case, that ties in nicely.

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  48. gazzmaniac (2,319 comments) says:

    Never said either of you did gazzmaniac. You don’t need to claim to have class to be classy. In your case, that ties in nicely.

    While I agree with the sentiment, don’t call her the she beast. You’re too classy for that.

    Seems you might have, actually.

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  49. freemark (497 comments) says:

    “I’ve got the Key” :) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_j-Tji1DueU&list=PLrHZvjJkERb9-9iq9Qnl4xaRfiGJcfLJX&index=6

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  50. RF (1,322 comments) says:

    Zapper. The title … She Beast …sums up that evil lady who single handed rooted the Labour Party when she exited leaving goof at the helm. The poor plonker was out of his depth and still does not know who is the real goof. The silent t has the same problem so its a labour thing.

    Are they clones ?

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  51. srylands (390 comments) says:

    “that Labour/Green single-market cheaper electricity policy will be looking very attractive to voters suffering from extortionate electricity bills.”

    It will only look attractive to economically illiterate voters who are incapable of clear thinking.

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  52. Zapper (949 comments) says:

    gazzmaniac, comprehension issues? You said neither you nor DG claimed to be classy. I said I didn’t claim either of you did.

    Me saying DG has class is not DG claiming to have class. Is this too complicated for you? Go back and have another read perhaps.

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  53. gazzmaniac (2,319 comments) says:

    Got it.

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  54. dime (9,607 comments) says:

    you guys know why young labour fucked up right?

    they cant compute the idea that someone would risk losing power a day before they had to. 2 months earlier than they had to! my god!!! thats 2 months of no power if they lose!

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  55. Zapper (949 comments) says:

    RF, I agree. I just think we can explain what we think of her without resorting to that

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  56. gazzmaniac (2,319 comments) says:

    dime – I thought that there was a July election during the “she beast” government?

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  57. CrazyIvan (88 comments) says:

    The explanation for the Nov 20 is simple. Labour are obviously backing themselves to win but realise a coalition with the Greens, Winston and Hone will last no more than 2 months before they need to have a new election…

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  58. Yoza (1,653 comments) says:

    Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

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  59. UglyTruth (4,550 comments) says:

    Not only did they get the month wrong, they used a calendar which starts its week on the second day.

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  60. RightNow (6,794 comments) says:

    “I’m looking forward to John Key sneering at people complaining about the cost of power.”

    I bet you are, it would be a wet dream for you if it ever really happened.

    Is the sky red on planet yoza? Guess what colour the sky is on my planet? Blue… like National.

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  61. RF (1,322 comments) says:

    Zapper. OK.. Understand your concerns. She tends to bring out the worst from the most decent people. I have a heap of respect for DG.

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  62. David Garrett (6,660 comments) says:

    Zapper: You a very kind…”classy” is not an adjective I usually associate with myself! And others certainly don’t..

    I really do believe Clark was an evil woman who did this country great harm…you may not remember, but my first bit of “controversy” in my short career was not standing up and politely applauding her for getting the UN job when everyone else in the House did…I was accused of pulling “a stunt”, but it wasnt….I had no idea all the Nat drones would follow the leader and stand up, and certainly not that my bench mates Boscawen and Douglas would too….I had about 20 seconds to decide what to do, and I decided I simply could not stand up and applaud someone I despised so much, and who I thought had done such harm…

    So I will keep referring to her thus if you don’t mind…but thank you again for your kind comment…

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  63. ShawnLH (4,330 comments) says:

    “Like I said, a September 20th election is a very brave call for a party that prides itself on existing for the benefit of an out of touch elite.”

    National exists for Cultural Marxist and Union bosses? That’s news to me.

    ” I’m looking forward to John Key sneering at people complaining about the cost of power.”

    Key doesn’t sneer at people. That was Helen Clark.

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  64. David Garrett (6,660 comments) says:

    Yoza Yoza…what a terrible position to be in…in late middle age (IIRC) and on the wrong side of history….the Wall long down; the Soviet Union long de-unionised; Russia about to pull a Hungary 1956/Czechoslovakia 1968 in Ukraine…your doctrine discredited throughout the world…

    What are you going to do when Key gets back with a workable majority, and the second biggest party in opposition is the Watermelons? (On second thought I guess you wouldnt mind that…)

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  65. Crusader (292 comments) says:

    Labour must be hoping there isn’t a cold late winter storm on that day.

    Labour types still believe in that Global Warming shite. Therefore it will be a glorious warm sunny day, right?

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  66. ShawnLH (4,330 comments) says:

    In fact, Helen Clark spent so much time sneering at people I began to think she had some kind of facial tick.

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  67. Zapper (949 comments) says:

    Fair enough DG. I agree, she is the worst PM in my lifetime (Muldoon was PM when I was born so I guess it’s close). She entrenched policies to screw NZ and try and force socialism on us for years to come.

    Not standing up to applaud her is what I would have expected. I can only assume those National Party members, who I support, were applauding her departure from the country.

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  68. David Garrett (6,660 comments) says:

    Shawn: She was – and is – a dreadful woman…I really believe she did more harm to this country than anyone since Muldoon…and by the end she was even more power mad than he was..

    Zapper: When Roger D realised I hadn’t stood for the cow he rather sheepishly said HE was applauding her departure…I don’t really believe it…to me it would have been like applauding Hitler for signing an unconditional surrender…

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  69. Zapper (949 comments) says:

    Sadly DG, I think she’ll be back to haunt us again in some form

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  70. freemark (497 comments) says:

    I think Yoza and HueRoss69 share a keyboard, and a brain.

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  71. Zapper (949 comments) says:

    Big call freemark. You think they a whole brain between them?

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  72. David Garrett (6,660 comments) says:

    freemark: Yoza is something of a sad case…as the cliche goes, we are all (or most of us) socialists at 18, but by 21 most have grown out of it…Old stagers like Yoza and Minto never do, no matter what the evidence, or what their socialist heroes do…I always thought it said a lot for Keith Locke’s father that he resigned from the communist party in disgust when they invaded Hungary in 1956…Mrs Locke and son stayed on…Yoza is probably a regular dinner guest chez Locke…

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  73. David Garrett (6,660 comments) says:

    they’d have to know each other…whaddya reckon the membership of the NZ Communist Party is these days…about 20? 50 perhaps?

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  74. Yoza (1,653 comments) says:

    David Garrett (4,864 comments) says:
    March 10th, 2014 at 7:30 pm

    Yoza Yoza…what a terrible position to be in…in late middle age (IIRC) and on the wrong side of history….the Wall long down; the Soviet Union long de-unionised; Russia about to pull a Hungary 1956/Czechoslovakia 1968 in Ukraine…your doctrine discredited throughout the world…

    Not my doctrine, totalitarian dictatorships only work for the dictators in much the same way the current economic paradigm only works for the very rich.

    What are you going to do when Key gets back with a workable majority, and the second biggest party in opposition is the Watermelons? (On second thought I guess you wouldnt mind that…)

    A Labour/Green government would probably be a death knell for the Greens, if their history of power sharing arrangements in other countries is anything to go by. As for what I’m going to do after the next election – I’m a worker, I will continue to work regardless of who attains control of the big house.

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  75. David Garrett (6,660 comments) says:

    Yoza: I didnt do Marxism at Uni…so please educate me…Please tell me a communist state that DIDNT turn into a totalitarian dictatorship…Genuine question…Perhaps it would be helpful if you would also say what IS your doctrine…I find the various communist schisms very confusing…

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  76. Zapper (949 comments) says:

    “Not my doctrine, totalitarian dictatorships only work for the dictators in much the same way the current economic paradigm only works for the very rich”

    I’m not very rich. The current economic paradigm works very well for me. I have great opportunities, and earn a good salary. Why are you telling me I should feel oppressed?

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  77. itstricky (1,681 comments) says:

    freemark: Yoza is something of a sad case…as the cliche goes, we are all (or most of us) socialists at 18, but by 21 most have grown out of it…

    It’s interesting Mr. Garrett, isn’t it – how you had ideals when you were 18 – ideals to make a difference 0but then you let life get the better of them, you caved in and got bitter and twisted? Or have I misunderstood – is that not what you’re saying?

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  78. Yoza (1,653 comments) says:

    David Garrett (4,867 comments) says:
    March 10th, 2014 at 8:11 pm

    Yoza: I didnt do Marxism at Uni…so please educate me…Please tell me a socialist/communist state that DIDNT turn into a totalitarian dictatorship…Genuine question…Perhaps it would be helpful if you would also say what IS your doctrine…I find the various communist schisms very confusing…

    Libertarian Socialist in the anarchist tradition, if that’s any help. I never ‘did’ Marxism either, Marx was too much of an authoritarian for my taste.

    “I am an anarchist not because I believe anarchism is the final goal, but because there is no such thing as a final goal”
    Rudolf Rocker.

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  79. bhudson (4,736 comments) says:

    @DG,

    Yoza has previously identified himself as a ‘libertarian socialist’ – the closest thing to a definition that can be determined is “someone who is absolutely fee to do exactly what the State tells them to.”

    I think perhaps his motto must be: servitude sets you free.

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  80. Zapper (949 comments) says:

    Yoza, tell us what you’re doing to promote anarchy. With (no) respect, you’re full of it

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  81. David Garrett (6,660 comments) says:

    itswhatever it is: You’re not worth engaging with mate…but I am pretty sure the law which is associated with me “made a difference”…Wait for the howls from your lot when the first third striker goes for a long holiday this year…several years sooner than I thought it would happen because of lenient sentences at stage 2…

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  82. itstricky (1,681 comments) says:

    itswhatever it is: You’re not worth engaging with mate…

    Then why did you?

    It’s a genuine question. I’d like to know what a bunch of grey hairs on their death beds say. Do they still say unrestricted capitalism is the be all ‘n’ end all? Probably not, right?

    So what happens inbetween 21 and 81? And why do your ideals change? Never thought about it? Maybe some introspection.

    3S? How about we switch topic for once?

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  83. ross69 (3,652 comments) says:

    It will only look attractive to economically illiterate voters who are incapable of clear thinking.

    You’ve described yourself to a T.

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  84. itstricky (1,681 comments) says:

    The current economic paradigm works very well for me. I have great opportunities, and earn a good salary. Why are you telling me I should feel oppressed?

    And, over here, we have bottled the essence of the personal responsibility brigade.

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  85. Zapper (949 comments) says:

    Heh, says the guy promoting an ideology that has failed every time it’s been tried (along with the accompanying mass murder)

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  86. Zapper (949 comments) says:

    itscunliffe

    You are a classic hypocrite. You assume I don’t donate to charity (apart from the 40K or so tax I pay). You assume I do nothing in the community except for myself.

    What do you do, except show everyone your envy and bitterness?

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  87. Yoza (1,653 comments) says:

    bhudson (4,698 comments) says:
    March 10th, 2014 at 8:21 pm

    @DG,

    Yoza has previously identified himself as a ‘libertarian socialist’ – the closest thing to a definition that can be determined is “someone who is absolutely fee to do exactly what the State tells them to.”

    This from someone who is a regular apologist for imperial US and its quisling apparatchiks throughout the world.

    Zapper (804 comments) says:
    March 10th, 2014 at 8:23 pm

    Yoza, tell us what you’re doing to promote anarchy.

    I am currently questioning the motives of those who support a socioeconomic paradigm that redistributes wealth from society’s poorest and transfers it to society’s wealthiest while steadily ruining the planet’s ecosystem.

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  88. David Garrett (6,660 comments) says:

    Zapper: I remember a meeting (literally, head on) with a band of anarchists on the corner of Queen and Customs Streets during the 2008 campaign…They were a pretty stereotyped lot, about an even division of the sexes…They had this chant which ended “A-BOL -ish the PO-lice!” I asked one young thing with a bone through her nose what she would do if – heaven forbid – she was waylaid and raped on the way home…wouldnt she go running to the arm of the state she wished to abolish?

    She looked at me as if completely stunned – and some male twerp with a goatee beard and a get up like James K Baxter started rabitting on about how she wouldnt need the cops because those “in her community” would deal to the rapist…I said, “what, you mean without a trial? You lot would decide whether he was guilty or not and deal to him?” They buggered off shortly after that…might have just been coincidence…

    Yoza: Still waiting for that communist state which didnt turn into an authoritarian dictatorship…

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  89. Zapper (949 comments) says:

    “I am currently questioning the motives of those who support a socioeconomic paradigm that redistributes wealth from society’s poorest and transfers it to society’s wealthiest while steadily ruining the planet’s ecosystem.”

    You are very confused. How much net tax do the poorest pay? How the fuck can a negative amount be stolen?

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  90. nasska (10,827 comments) says:

    The price of power is irrelevant….the economically illiterate are already committed Green/Labour supporters.

    They can bitch & moan until September but it will make no difference to the Vote received by the right.

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  91. ShawnLH (4,330 comments) says:

    Socialist anarchists have never been able to explain, to my satisfaction at least, how economic/wealth equality can achieved without resorting to coercion and violence. It was Noam Chomsky who let the cat out of the bag and said that some violence would probably be necessary.

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  92. ShawnLH (4,330 comments) says:

    “I am currently questioning the motives of those who support a socioeconomic paradigm that redistributes wealth from society’s poorest and transfers it to society’s wealthiest while steadily ruining the planet’s ecosystem.”

    Neither of these claims is true. For a start. “societies poorest” would not have any wealth to re-distribute in the first place, and as far as the second, communist countries have a far worst track record on the environment than capitalist societies.

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  93. David Garrett (6,660 comments) says:

    Yoza: Just in your own time..I can be very patient in the right circumstances…

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  94. bhudson (4,736 comments) says:

    This from someone who is a regular apologist for imperial US and its quisling apparatchiks throughout the world.

    Or, in plain English, “from someone who doesn’t drink the delusional bile that is Noam Chomsky”

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  95. srylands (390 comments) says:

    “You’ve described yourself to a T.”

    If you want to be a smarmy smart arse engaged in personal attacks and sloganeering go back to The Standard.

    I, and others, and the Electricity Authority have posted considered reasons why NZ Power won’t work. But yes you and Yoza know best because as Yoza claims the “mafia” runs the electricity generation industry in New Zealand. Well how comforting for your supporters.

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  96. srylands (390 comments) says:

    “You mean people who are suffering from an electricity market based on a Mafia style protection racket?”

    This is simply your parallel reality. Are you planning to collect your evidence and lodge a complaint with the Commerce Commission? No. Because there is no evidence of a “Mafia style protection racket”.

    Electricity has become more expensive for households over the last 15 years. That is a good and necessary thing. Not popular but it was necessary. The reasons for the increase have been well documented.

    Are you seriously suggesting that a counter factual is that a government could have held residential electricity prices over the last 15 years to some level substantially less than we have now? What do you think might have happened if a Government has forced such an outcome? Or do you think we would have the diversity of supply AND the massive investment we have seen in transmission, AND the maintenance of renewables, AND the depletion of Maui gas AND an increase in wind, AND an ETS, with no real increases in power prices?

    This is what I mean by a lack of clear thinking Yoza. Markets deliver prosperity. A mandated Government monopoly can mandate lower prices, but there will be consequences. Consumers in command economies have learned this over the last 50 years.

    So my advice, which I am sure you will ignore, is ditch the slogans and do some thinking.

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  97. Yoza (1,653 comments) says:

    David Garrett (4,870 comments) says:
    March 10th, 2014 at 8:36 pm

    Yoza: Still waiting for that communist state which didnt turn into an authoritarian dictatorship…

    Define communist.

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  98. Yoza (1,653 comments) says:

    ShawnLH (258 comments) says:
    March 10th, 2014 at 8:39 pm

    It was Noam Chomsky who let the cat out of the bag and said that some violence would probably be necessary.

    Of course there will be violence, states are by their very nature violent institutions. Anyone expecting the ruling elite to quietly exit stage left is deluding themselves.

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  99. srylands (390 comments) says:

    “I am currently questioning the motives of those who support a socioeconomic paradigm that redistributes wealth from society’s poorest and transfers it to society’s wealthiest ”

    Yoza can you point me to any data that supports this statement for New Zealand? New Zealand’s poorest pay no net tax. The richest 10% pay a shed load of tax. And a good deal of money – from the shed load of taxes from the rich pricks, in turn, gets given to poor people.

    I am trying to keep this simple for you.

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  100. David Garrett (6,660 comments) says:

    Oh dear! Communist: “Any government which claimed it was run according to Marxism-Leninism theory or any offshoot or schism thereof”

    There you go…that gives you a very wide field!

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  101. ShawnLH (4,330 comments) says:

    “I remember a meeting (literally, head on) with a band of anarchists on the corner of Queen and Customs Streets during the 2008 campaign”

    These kinds of anarchists really do not do any kind of serious thinking about what exactly to replace the State with. They are what I call fashion anarchists, total posers. There are of course serious anarchists who have done that thinking, and most of them are on the anarchist Right, including but not limited to Murray Rothbard, David Freidman, HL Mencken, Albert Jay Nock and Hans-Hermann Hoppe.

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  102. freemark (497 comments) says:

    Why is that most Standardistas are too afraid to engage/debate here, and most KiwiBloggers are not permitted to engage/debate over there?
    Slightly rhetorical I know, yet oh so telling….

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  103. gander (90 comments) says:

    Yoza (1,238 comments) says: in response to bhudson
    March 10th, 2014 at 8:35 pm

    “This from someone who is a regular apologist for imperial US and its quisling apparatchiks throughout the world.”

    What a warm, nostalgic feeling you give me, Yoza.

    That’s exactly how the first year poli sci students used to talk when I was in university in the 70′s.

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  104. David Garrett (6,660 comments) says:

    gander: Yes indeed (although my uni experince was ten years later the same jargon could be heard)

    But where is Yoza? Perhaps he is sifting through the 10 or 20 best examples of communist (as I have defined it) states which DIDNT turn into dictatorships so he can give me a shortlist to choose from…or perhaps not!

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  105. Zapper (949 comments) says:

    Well DG, NZ 1999-2008 got close but perhaps didn’t quite get there….maybe that’s the example he’s looking for?

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  106. Yoza (1,653 comments) says:

    David Garrett (4,871 comments) says:
    March 10th, 2014 at 8:54 pm

    Oh dear! Communist: “Any government which claimed it was run according to Marxism-Leninism theory or any offshoot or schism thereof”

    Why would I attempt to make apologies for the adherents of totalitarianism? I’m confused, where have I claimed to have supported this?

    srylands (272 comments) says:
    March 10th, 2014 at 8:53 pm

    “I am currently questioning the motives of those who support a socioeconomic paradigm that redistributes wealth from society’s poorest and transfers it to society’s wealthiest ”

    Yoza can you point me to any data that supports this statement for New Zealand? New Zealand’s poorest pay no net tax. The richest 10% pay a shed load of tax. And a good deal of money – from the shed load of taxes from the rich pricks, in turn, gets given to poor people.

    “If I were asked to answer the following question: What is slavery? and I should answer in one word, It is murder!, my meaning would be understood at once. No extended argument would be required . .Why, then, to this other question: What is property? may I not likewise answer, It is robbery!, without the certainty of being misunderstood; the second proposition being no other than a transformation of the first?”
    —Pierre-Joseph Proudhon

    The deprivation inflicted on the poor is directly proportional to the largesse the wealthy shower on themselves. This is what Proudhon means when he points out ‘property is theft’, large swathes of the population are condemned to an abject existence devoid of opportunity so a well heeled few can exist in opulent abundance.

    The neoliberal fantasy about wealth popping out of a vacuum or existing without consequence to anyone else is an unsustainable illusion. It didn’t work for Marie Antoinette or the Romanovs and I doubt its going to work much longer for the current ruling elite.

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  107. ShawnLH (4,330 comments) says:

    “The deprivation inflicted on the poor is directly proportional to the largesse the wealthy shower on themselves.”

    Evidence?

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  108. Yoza (1,653 comments) says:

    ShawnLH (259 comments) says:
    March 10th, 2014 at 8:56 pm

    There are of course serious anarchists who have done that thinking, and most of them are on the anarchist Right, including but not limited to Murray Rothbard, David Freidman, HL Mencken, Albert Jay Nock and Hans-Hermann Hoppe.

    They are not serious anarchists as they cannot explain how their property rights have any meaning without a state security apparatus to back them up.

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  109. David Garrett (6,660 comments) says:

    I get it! He is the internet version of those guys at Speakers Corner in London…they keep talking, but don’t actually SAY anything intelligible…and every now and again, when someone in exasperation says “But you have said XXX.. what about YYY?” and the answer is “but that’s what I’ve been saying..”

    But I know you are not a young man Yoza, and as you are still “a worker” you will no doubt need to get some sleep…nighty night….

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  110. Yoza (1,653 comments) says:

    ShawnLH (260 comments) says:
    March 10th, 2014 at 9:17 pm

    “The deprivation inflicted on the poor is directly proportional to the largesse the wealthy shower on themselves.”

    Evidence?

    What do you mean ‘Evidence?’, this is how contemporary capitalism works. Regardless of who wins the election we will continue to witness the gap between those who have and those who do not increasing until it reaches a tipping point (see Romanovs, Mariee Antoinette) where those at the bottom can not possibly tolerate anymore.

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  111. ShawnLH (4,330 comments) says:

    ” This is what Proudhon means when he points out ‘property is theft’, large swathes of the population are condemned to an abject existence devoid of opportunity so a well heeled few can exist in opulent abundance.”

    Countries with weak private property rights have more poverty than those with much stronger property rights.

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  112. ShawnLH (4,330 comments) says:

    “What do you mean ‘Evidence?’, this is how contemporary capitalism works.”

    I mean facts to back your claim, rather than slogans. Evidence means actual real world examples, as opposed to just claiming “this is how contemporary capitalism works” which is a claim, not evidence.

    For example I can point to the vast work done by Hernando De Soto that strong property rights and the rule of law help the poor far better than collectivist systems.

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  113. wat dabney (3,714 comments) says:

    Yoza,

    Libertarian Socialist

    As has been pointed out before, this is a complete contradiction in terms.

    All leftist systems – Socialism, Fascism, Communism – are coercive. They are fundamentally based on the preposition of violence.

    This fact, far more than their economic inefficiency, is actually the principle objection to them.

    Since you advocate violence at least be a man and admit it. There are no “libertarian socialists”, no “libertarian fascists” and no “libertarian communists”; any more than there can be a “libertarian mafia.”

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  114. ShawnLH (4,330 comments) says:

    “They are not serious anarchists as they cannot explain how their property rights have any meaning without a state security apparatus to back them up.”

    Actually they can and they have, but clearly you have not read their work, so your dismissal is facile.

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  115. David Garrett (6,660 comments) says:

    Does anyone know how much the French equivalent of WINZ paid as the dole per week in pre-revolutionary France?

    “..where those at the bottom cannot possibly tolerate anymore (sic.)”

    Well, I guess luckily for us “those at the bottom” in this country – Hone’s constituents – are all so out of it on hydroponic “skunk” that they wont pose too much of a threat…Although the terrorists arrested in that clusterfuck in the Ureweras were no laughing matter…Friends of ‘Yoza the Worker’ perhaps??

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  116. wat dabney (3,714 comments) says:

    Yoza?

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  117. David Garrett (6,660 comments) says:

    …and they remain “at the bottom” because to get one of the thousands of jobs going in forestry in the North you CANNOT be out of it, and have to return a clean drug test…so they remain the oppressed brown proletariat “on the benefit”…oppressed by their own behaviour….

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  118. ShawnLH (4,330 comments) says:

    Law without the State.

    https://mises.org/daily/5646/Law-without-the-State

    Anarchy and Efficient Law.

    http://www.daviddfriedman.com/Academic/Anarchy_and_Eff_Law/Anarchy_and_Eff_Law.html

    “The basic axiom of libertarian political theory holds that every man is a self owner, having absolute jurisdiction over his own body. In effect, this means that no one else may justly invade, or aggress against, another’s person. It follows then that each person justly owns whatever previously unowned resources he appropriates or “mixes his labor with.” From these twin axioms — self-ownership and “homesteading” — stem the justification for the entire system of property rights titles in a free-market society. This system establishes the right of every man to his own person, the right of donation, of bequest (and, concomitantly, the right to receive the bequest or inheritance), and the right of contractual exchange of property titles.”

    Murray Rothbard.

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  119. burt (7,948 comments) says:

    Yoza

    I am currently questioning the motives of those who support a socioeconomic paradigm that redistributes wealth from society’s poorest and transfers it to society’s wealthiest while steadily ruining the planet’s ecosystem.

    The unions grip on low paid employment is decreasing. Stop voting for Labour to reinforce it if you don’t like transfer of wealth from low paid workers to fat cat politicians.

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  120. griffith (1,111 comments) says:

    A system based on never-ending exponential growth has a minor problem as a viable economic philosophy. The earth is a closed system. 60.000 odd years of future eating and humanity inc has learnt only how to do it better.

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  121. wat dabney (3,714 comments) says:

    A system based on never-ending exponential growth has a minor problem

    You must be referring to the pension schemes run by your precious state, because private Capitalism certainly has no such assumption.

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  122. ShawnLH (4,330 comments) says:

    “A system based on never-ending exponential growth has a minor problem as a viable economic philosophy.”

    That is not remotely a valid description of genuine free market capitalism. It is a valid description of the democratic welfare state, which requires exponential growth to provide for it’s unsustainable spending.

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  123. Yoza (1,653 comments) says:

    wat dabney (3,354 comments) says:
    March 10th, 2014 at 9:29 pm

    Yoza,

    “Libertarian Socialist ”

    As has been pointed out before, this is a complete contradiction in terms.

    Libertarian Socialism has been around for well over a century, you do not get to decide what is and what is not. The sordid US definition of Libertarianism is one of the dopiest political jokes ever, its nothing but a propaganda system promoted by the very wealthy people who are utterly dependent on the state welfare system.

    All leftist systems – Socialism, Fascism, Communism – are coercive. They are fundamentally based on the preposition of violence.

    Fascism is the next step in the evolution of the neoliberal economic experiment, the expansion of the state security apparatus, the criminalising of dissent and the support of ultra right-wing groups are straight out of the rich-pricks 30s play-book. Life will continue to get harsher for the majority of people as the current economic system grinds on and the only way to prevent social discord is through violent repression.

    This fact, far more than their economic inefficiency, is actually the principle objection to them.

    Since you advocate violence at least be a man and admit it. There are no “libertarian socialists”, no “libertarian fascists” and no “libertarian communists”; any more than there can be a “libertarian mafia.”

    I don’t advocate violence, I anticipate its inevitable use by the established elite to preserve their system of privilege and control. I am not a pacifist, I think people should defend themselves against the depravity of our self appointed corporate overlords.

    griffith (14 comments) says:
    March 10th, 2014 at 9:45 pm

    A system based on never-ending exponential growth has a minor problem as a viable economic philosophy. The earth is a closed system.

    These fanatics can ignore that, because there is always more in the neoliberal fantasyland. It doesn’t matter how much of the Earth’s resources are depleted the doctrine of perpetual neoliberal economic growth demands there will always be more; pollution doesn’t matter because no matter how much toxic waste is dumped in our oceans or rivers the doctrine of perpetual neoliberal economic growth demands the Earth will always provide the capacity to allow for further pollution without consequence; it doesn’t matter how poorly people are treated as the doctrine of perpetual neoliberal economic growth demands they accept increasingly harsh abuse.

    This is the beauty of the inevitable revolutionary change – the wealthy and their coordinator class are either ideologically incapable of seeing it coming or even remotely aware of the warning signs they should be looking for.

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  124. ShawnLH (4,330 comments) says:

    Libertarian socialism is a fraudulent fantasy invented by left wing elites as a thin disguise for promoting communism that will progressively destroy personal and economic freedom in the name of “equality”. Libertarian socialism is just communism through the back door, and has nothing at all to do with real freedom.

    The oppressive nature of all left wing systems, including those that hide dishonestly behind the claim to libertarianism, creates poverty and suffering on an epic scale, and when dissent arises, uses violence to suppress that dissent. This is why Chomsky revealed the truth about the lie of “libertarian socialism” when he admitted that violence would be necessary to create “equality”.

    This violence was seen at it’s most horrific with an actual real world example of “libertarian socialism”, the Khmer Rouge/Pol Pot regime, which slaughtered over a million people trying to create Yoza’s fantasy of “equality”.

    The Left has lost the debate historically, with the fall of communist regimes. Now the same evil has been re-invented as “libertarian socialism”, but it is the very same evil merely hiding behind a different mask. That is why communist nutjob and Pol Pot supporter Keith Locke started calling himself a “libertarian socialist”, to fool people into believing that he had changed. But I used to live next door to his mother, and what Locke said in front of the cameras, and what he said in private, were very different.

    The liberation of the poor by the small advances of the free market, and the global reduction in poverty that free markets have created, has frightened Left wing elites like Chomsky, and his cult followers such as Yoza, and so we get the fraud of “libertarian” socialism and threats of coming violence if economic freedom is not rolled back. These threats are not coming from real poor people, but privileged elites like Chomsky and privileged Westerners like Yoza, who have never known real poverty and do not speak for the poor.

    The fanatical cultish nature of all left wing systems including forms of socialism such as the Nazi’s, Stalinism, and Pol Pot’s libertarian socialism, is the greatest political evil the world has ever seen

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  125. Ryan Sproull (7,056 comments) says:

    As has been pointed out before, this is a complete contradiction in terms.

    All leftist systems – Socialism, Fascism, Communism – are coercive. They are fundamentally based on the preposition of violence.

    This fact, far more than their economic inefficiency, is actually the principle objection to them.

    Since you advocate violence at least be a man and admit it. There are no “libertarian socialists”, no “libertarian fascists” and no “libertarian communists”; any more than there can be a “libertarian mafia.”

    Wat dabney, you do realise that just saying things doesn’t make them true, right?

    Here, I’ll have a go.

    All right-wing systems are coercive. “Free capitalism” is a contradiction in terms. Capitalist property rights require a state threatening violence to enforce and support their naturally unjust distribution of wealth. All capitalism is coercive.

    Whee! It’s fun just saying things as if they’re obviously true and only a fool would disagree.

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  126. Ryan Sproull (7,056 comments) says:

    Jesus, it has been a busy night, hasn’t it.

    Libertarian socialism is a fraudulent fantasy invented by left wing elites as a thin disguise for promoting communism that will progressively destroy personal and economic freedom in the name of “equality”. Libertarian socialism is just communism through the back door, and has nothing at all to do with real freedom.

    Wrong.

    The oppressive nature of all left wing systems, including those that hide dishonestly behind the claim to libertarianism, creates poverty and suffering on an epic scale, and when dissent arises, uses violence to suppress that dissent. This is why Chomsky revealed the truth about the lie of “libertarian socialism” when he admitted that violence would be necessary to create “equality”.

    Like many libertarian socialists, I’m a pacifist myself. The capitalist status quo is extremely violent, which is one of the reasons I oppose it.

    This violence was seen at it’s most horrific with an actual real world example of “libertarian socialism”, the Khmer Rouge/Pol Pot regime, which slaughtered over a million people trying to create Yoza’s fantasy of “equality”.

    Uh…

    Perhaps you can explain how Pol Pot’s regime was libertarian.

    The Left has lost the debate historically, with the fall of communist regimes. Now the same evil has been re-invented as “libertarian socialism”, but it is the very same evil merely hiding behind a different mask. That is why communist nutjob and Pol Pot supporter Keith Locke started calling himself a “libertarian socialist”, to fool people into believing that he had changed. But I used to live next door to his mother, and what Locke said in front of the cameras, and what he said in private, were very different.

    Libertarian socialism predates Marxism. It is not a re-invention of anything. Read a book.

    The liberation of the poor by the small advances of the free market, and the global reduction in poverty that free markets have created, has frightened Left wing elites like Chomsky, and his cult followers such as Yoza, and so we get the fraud of “libertarian” socialism and threats of coming violence if economic freedom is not rolled back. These threats are not coming from real poor people, but privileged elites like Chomsky and privileged Westerners like Yoza, who have never known real poverty and do not speak for the poor.

    The fanatical cultish nature of all left wing systems including forms of socialism such as the Nazi’s, Stalinism, and Pol Pot’s libertarian socialism, is the greatest political evil the world has ever seen

    Wow, you just genuinely talk a whole bunch of shit, huh. Like, you write in paragraphs, which is often an indication of maybe having some idea of what you’re talking about, the tantalising hint of someone who might actually have some points behind their statements, but then when I take the time to read those paragraphs…

    It’s disappointing, Shawn. It really is. There are plenty of fine arguments against libertarian socialism out there, but waving your hands in the air and yelling “Pol Pot! Stalin!” is not one of them. Nor is repeatedly demonstrating that you don’t even know what you’re writing against.

    Here, let me do your job for you. Here are a few arguments that actually address libertarian socialism:

    1. It’s never been done! You can’t point to any successful instance of libertarian socialism. A few months in Spain? Is that it? Capitalism and liberal democracy have a proven track record of generating wealth and creating stability.
    2. People are greedy, self-interested assholes. Capitalism harnesses that power for the general good of all, but libertarian socialism relies on an unrealistic and idealistic notion of human nature. We’re not nice enough people to be libertarian socialists!
    3. Who’s going to defend the borders of a country that goes libertarian-socialist? You won’t have an army, so you’ll just be fair game for anyone who wants to roll on up.
    4. What about mentally ill psychopaths murdering people? Someone’s got to stop them and lock them up. That means police, which means a justice system and a penal system, which has to be collectively decided somehow, and we’re getting awfully close again to liberal democracy with a state, aren’t we?

    There, Shawn. Feel free to use one of those four next time you want to argue against libertarian socialism in a way that makes you look at least a little bit like you know what libertarian socialism is.

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  127. RRM (9,603 comments) says:

    Take a look at https://www.facebook.com/wakeupnz – scary to think these people will be voting too :-(

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  128. wat dabney (3,714 comments) says:

    Ryan,

    Like many libertarian socialists, I’m a pacifist myself.

    Another complete oxymoron.

    Socialism is based absolutely on coercion and violence. Your willingness to use violence in this way means you are anything but a pacifist. A deluded hypocrite, yes; pacifist, anything but.

    The capitalist status quo is extremely violent

    Capitalism, except in a limited technical sense, is generally used as a synonym for non-coercive free markets. Under Capitalism, the state’s role is largely limited to upholding individual rights so all can trade and cooperate peacefully and freely with each other.

    Capitalism is all about the removal of violence. It is the only “system” under which this has ever been true in the entire history of mankind. All others – socialism, fascism, communism, serfdom, slavery, whatever – are premised on violence.

    Only a Capitalist can ever be a pacifist.

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  129. itstricky (1,681 comments) says:

    Zapper,

    You are a classic hypocrite.

    You’ve the wrong word there.

    You assume I don’t donate to charity (apart from the 40K or so tax I pay). You assume I do nothing in the community except for myself.

    You wandered in here saying how “you were alright, Jack” and whining about how much tax you paid. People do make assumptions based on first impressions. But, if you do something worthy extramurally, good on you.

    What do you do, except show everyone your envy and bitterness?

    What I do is inconsequential. I will tell you that I pay about 2% less tax than you do. I’ve not really got anything to be envious about. You wouldn’t have formed an assumption based on a first impression, now, would you?

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  130. itstricky (1,681 comments) says:

    2. People are greedy, self-interested assholes. Capitalism harnesses that power for the general good of all, but libertarian socialism relies on an unrealistic and idealistic notion of human nature

    Disagree. Capitalism faces exactly the same challenges of greed that socialism and communism do. One entity at the top gains all the power and wealth. It is exactly why unfiltered Capitalism will fail, just like unfiltered Communism.

    I do agree with your point about Capitalism being coercive. Someone has to be in place to stop all out riots, don’t they? Or you just build big walls with machine guns on top to keep out the scum. That’s not very un-violent, is it?

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  131. wat dabney (3,714 comments) says:

    Yoza,

    I don’t advocate violence

    Yes, you do.

    It may be implicit, and I understand why you don’t want to acknowledge this ugly truth, but the fact remains that socialism, fascism, communism etc can only ever be imposed through a willingness to use violence: up to and including deadly force.

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  132. OneTrack (2,751 comments) says:

    itstricky – who is the one person at the top in capitalist NZ? What rights does that person have? Under capitalism (nobody is talking unfettered Capitalism), I can go where I want, I can live where I want and I can start a web site denying climate change.

    In any Communist country you can name, I would have none of those “rights”. Should I have those rights, or does the needs of the collective overrule those individual freedoms?

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  133. griffith (1,111 comments) says:

    Trade and cooperate freely
    fuzzy wat wat
    You are a laisser fiare capitalist. You also talk some unmitigated crap. Chatham islands 1500 CE – 18nov 1835. Non violent Non capitalist pacifist.

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  134. itstricky (1,681 comments) says:

    OneTrack – tell me why the median wage is what it is? A “good wage” for an experienced peronnel is worth the equivalent of a starting wage 20 years ago. All whilst certain parties earn 10s and 100s of millions for little descernable shareholder profit nor public good. That 10s and 100s of millions represents a many fold increase over twenty years ago. Why?

    Incidentally I did not say that there weren’t other downfalls to other systems – I mearly commented that Capitalism fails on the greed test as much as any other.

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  135. ShawnLH (4,330 comments) says:

    “Like many libertarian socialists, I’m a pacifist myself.”

    So when libertarian socialists attack and vandalise private property during anti-WTO protests that is the libertarian socialist definition of pacifism? Thought so. More dishonest bullshit your just hiding your real intentions behind. You cannot have ANY form of socialism without the initiation of coercive violence.

    “Perhaps you can explain how Pol Pot’s regime was libertarian.”

    It wasn’t. Neither is “Libertarian” socialism. It’s just SOCIALISM. The highjacking of the term ‘Libertarian’ is just dishonest spin to fool the gullible.

    “Libertarian socialism predates Marxism. It is not a re-invention of anything. Read a book.”

    I would happily bet a weeks wages that I have read a helluva lot more books than you boy. Some forms of anarchism do predate Marxist Communism, but Libertarian Socialism grew in concert with it and was at best an insignificant and tiny non-entity until the fall of the Soviet Union when it suddenly started becoming fashionable, in the same way that Communists started calling themselves Greens. It’s called hiding behind a dishonest label.

    As to what are or are not good arguments, your a socialist. You would not know a good argument if you fell over it in broad daylight. I consider ALL socialists/communists/ the intellectual equivalent of Jim Jones’ folllowers (another nasty example of libertarian socialism by the way), gullible sheep unable to think coherently because of the mindless cult nature of all socialist thought.

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  136. ShawnLH (4,330 comments) says:

    “Someone has to be in place to stop all out riots, don’t they? Or you just build big walls with machine guns on top to keep out the scum. That’s not very un-violent, is it?”

    WHAT RIOTS??????

    Istricky and Yoza and their ilk are always claiming riots and violence from the “poor and oppressed” are happening or about to happen in capitalist countries.

    BULLSHIT.

    The ONLY people I ever see rioting are a tiny number of middle/upper class fashionable anarchists and socialists who have never known poverty, do not speak for the poor, and are just rebelling against their parents and playing at being “radicals”.

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  137. tom hunter (4,536 comments) says:

    Yoza from this thread

    “I don’t advocate violence ”

    Yoza from last year, in response to a comment that “So the revolution has moved on from bullets to more indirect methods? That would make sense given the immense problem trying to find anyone these days to support the movement, let alone do the dirty work.:

    … and in all honesty, I don’t think I would have too many qualms carrying out ‘the dirty work’, As I have said to Kiwi in America, “I wouldn’t incite anyone to do anything I wasn’t prepared to do myself.”

    Why do you think I would expect others to do something I was not prepared to do myself?

    And then this clown thinks he has credibility in claiming that his ideology has nothing to do with the likes of Mao, Stalin, Castro, Pol Pot, Hugo Chavez, …..

    Their deeds were built on the backs of millions of little Yoza’s who will entirely willing, even eager, to do the dirty work.

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  138. ShawnLH (4,330 comments) says:

    Thanks for that Tom. So we now know Yoza is a dirty little liar and in favour of tyranny, oppression and violence. Not remotely surprised. The whole “I’m a “pacifist libertarian” Socialist claim is a lie that the same old usual suspects are hiding behind. But make no mistake, if Yoza and Sproul had their way it would be back to mass starvation, mass killings of dissenters and gulags from one end of the country to the other.

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  139. tom hunter (4,536 comments) says:

    … if Yoza and Sproul had their way …

    I’ve been on this site since its inception and I think Ryan Sproull has been as well. In that time we’ve engaged in a number of debates, almost always in opposition to eachother, but I’ve never felt that he hated my guts and regarded me as “evil”, a refreshing change from the usual attitude of left-wingers with regard to the right. I’ve never seen him use any of the boilerplate Marxist language that is such a hallmark of brainless slogan shouters.

    Moreover, as much as I might also think that “Libertarian Socialist” is an oxymoron, I have to say that I’ve never encountered from Ryan any indication that he believes in the glories of revolution as a means of obtaining his utopia. Nor have I ever seen him passionately defend statist, murderous assholes like Chavez, Castro and company – even though he probably agrees with their claimed objectives regarding “the poor”.

    In fact, judging by recent debates about the minimum wage, Ryan seems to be in the camp of the so-called “post-scarcity” thinkers, where automation will – or should – increasingly free humans from at least physical drudgery and want for the basics. An incremental change that he will push as far and as fast as possible: post-scarcity meaning post-capitalism, but with the added thought of first, do no harm, by not trashing current institutions in some classic Year-Zero frenzy.

    In short, he actually seems to be trying to put his beliefs into practice, even if only at the level of blog comment debates, which is to say that he is quite different to the undoubted piece of communist excrement that is that other supposed “Libertarian Socialist”, Yoza.

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  140. ShawnLH (4,330 comments) says:

    Fair enough Tom. I respect your opinion so I will cease any further association of Ryan with Yoza, and take your word concerning his intentions. And I apologize to Ryan if I put him in the wrong camp.

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  141. ShawnLH (4,330 comments) says:

    That last sentence should have been FOR putting him in the wrong camp, not IF. I’ll cop to that mistake.

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  142. Yoza (1,653 comments) says:

    “… is to say that he is quite different to the undoubted piece of communist excrement that is that other supposed “Libertarian Socialist”, Yoza.”

    I’m sure Ryan Sproull is weeping with gratitude after reading your defense of him, Tom. I’m curious, Tom; Would you describe the US invasion of Iraq as being violent? Was the invasion of Afghanistan violent? Was the paramilitary police raid carried out against the people at Ruatoki violent? People like you tend to have a pretty restricted sense of what violence actually is, I would imagine you would struggle to accept white states using armed force against non-white victims is violent. Am I right, Tom?

    And who is Ryan Sproull to claim he is a pacifist while living in a country founded on the doctrine of white supremacy, where the indigenous population was violently dispossessed of their sovereignty to make way for the commercial interests of European interlopers?

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  143. Ryan Sproull (7,056 comments) says:

    And who is Ryan Sproull to claim he is a pacifist while living in a country founded on the doctrine of white supremacy, where the indigenous population was violently dispossessed of their sovereignty to make way for the commercial interests of European interlopers?

    Yes, but I buy Fair Trade.

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  144. DJP6-25 (1,295 comments) says:

    This election date is better than a snap election. No sign of opportunisim, or anxiety. A cold rainy day in Ak, and Ch-Ch would be just the ticket.

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  145. ShawnLH (4,330 comments) says:

    “I’m curious, Tom; Would you describe the US invasion of Iraq as being violent?”

    It did not involve the initiation of force, no. That initiation was carried out by Saddam.

    “Was the invasion of Afghanistan violent?”

    See above, just change Saddam to bin Laden. Defensive force against the initiation of force is legitimate. Killing people to make everyone “equal” is not.

    “where the indigenous population was violently dispossessed of their sovereignty to make way for the commercial interests of European interlopers?”

    Are you an indigenous person? No? Then what right do you have to speak for them?

    Living in a country that was invaded may well mean that the State has blood on it’s hands, but that does not remotely justify your advocacy of left wing political violence. The issues facing indigenous peoples and your violent socialist ideology have nothing to do with each other. Your simply, and offensively imo, using their suffering and experience to justify your dangerous political nuttery.

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  146. ShawnLH (4,330 comments) says:

    “I would imagine you would struggle to accept white states using armed force against non-white victims is violent.”

    Of course it was violence, because it involved the initiation of force. How does that fact justify the hard left also initiating force? Especially when so many of the hard left in the West are white?

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  147. Ryan Sproull (7,056 comments) says:

    Goodness. Look at all of this.

    Um.

    Firstly, Shawn, I apologise to you for my comment last night. Telling someone that they talk a load of shit rather than addressing their words is something I try to avoid in general. In fairness, you were talking a load of shit, but there are more constructive ways to respond to common misconceptions, and I should have used them.

    Secondly, Tom, thank you.

    Thirdly, Shawn, happy to accept your apology for making assumptions about me, but none necessary for associating me with Yoza. I’m sure he and I don’t agree on everything, but we are definitely in the same camp regarding many things, and I often enjoy reading his comments a lot.

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  148. Ryan Sproull (7,056 comments) says:

    I would happily bet a weeks wages that I have read a helluva lot more books than you boy. Some forms of anarchism do predate Marxist Communism, but Libertarian Socialism grew in concert with it and was at best an insignificant and tiny non-entity

    So it’s invalid because it wasn’t popular?

    until the fall of the Soviet Union when it suddenly started becoming fashionable

    So it’s invalid because it’s popular?

    As to what are or are not good arguments, your a socialist. You would not know a good argument if you fell over it in broad daylight.

    I disagree.

    I consider ALL socialists/communists/ the intellectual equivalent of Jim Jones’ folllowers (another nasty example of libertarian socialism by the way), gullible sheep unable to think coherently because of the mindless cult nature of all socialist thought.

    That is your loss.

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  149. Ryan Sproull (7,056 comments) says:

    It did not involve the initiation of force, no. That initiation was carried out by Saddam.

    Yoza is presumably referring to the 2003 invasion of Iraq, not the response to the 1990 invasion of Kuwait.

    See above, just change Saddam to bin Laden. Defensive force against the initiation of force is legitimate. Killing people to make everyone “equal” is not.

    Bin Laden the Saudi Arabian terrorist? When did Afghanistan initiate force against the US?

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  150. Ryan Sproull (7,056 comments) says:

    Capitalism, except in a limited technical sense, is generally used as a synonym for non-coercive free markets. Under Capitalism, the state’s role is largely limited to upholding individual rights so all can trade and cooperate peacefully and freely with each other.

    I actually don’t have a problem with free markets, Wat. The violence of statist capitalism comes from the private ownership of capital goods and the capital ownership of the product of labour that uses them. Then the state’s role has to expand to protecting this inherently unfair system – that owners are rewarded for owning, while workers are compensated proportionally less for actually creating value (whether or not that value is determined by free markets).

    On the small scale (the magical small-business owner entrepreneur), the discrepancy is negligible. Writ large and globally, the injustice and its consequences require proportionally larger and more violent systems of control.

    That’s the violent business as usual that anti-capitalists complain about. The private ownership of capital requires state force (violence and the threat of violence) to maintain the status quo.

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  151. ShawnLH (4,330 comments) says:

    “So it’s invalid because it wasn’t popular?”

    That wasn’t my point. My point is WHY is it suddenly popular? There is a doco called ‘The Great Global Warming Scam’ which argues that after the discrediting of Communism many communists moved into the green movement as a way of continuing to pursue their aims in a different guise. That is the reason so many in the NZ Green party were members of communist groups prior to joining the Greens. I believe the same thing is happenning with the sudden “popularity” of left wing anarchism. Different mask, same old tyranny.

    However, it IS invalid in the sense that, imo, no matter how it is conceived, libertarianism and socialism are mutually incompatible.

    “That is your loss.”

    Not at all, it’s my gain.

    “Yoza is presumably referring to the 2003 invasion of Iraq, not the response to the 1990 invasion of Kuwait.”

    They were actually the same war. 2003 was simply the response to Sadam’s failure to abide by the terms of his initial defeat.

    “Bin Laden the Saudi Arabian terrorist? When did Afghanistan initiate force against the US?”

    By hosting al Qaeda and providing the base from which bin Laden operated. If NZ welcomed and happily hosted an armed group that then committed acts of terror against Australia, do you think the Australians would not hold us at least responsible? And if we continued to host those responsible, would not Australia be within it’s rights to pursue them here?

    Where was most of al Qaeda at the time? Saudi Arabia or Afghanistan?

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  152. Ryan Sproull (7,056 comments) says:

    That wasn’t my point. My point is WHY is it suddenly popular? There is a doco called ‘The Great Global Warming Scam’ which argues that after the discrediting of Communism many communists moved into the green movement as a way of continuing to pursue their aims in a different guise. I believe the same thing is happenning with the sudden “popularity” of left wing anarchism. Different mask, same old tyranny.

    I don’t care why it’s suddenly popular (and I’m not sure it’s really as popular as you think). That’s irrelevant to the intellectual and moral strength of its claims.

    However, it IS invalid in the sense that, imo, no matter how it is conceived, libertarianism and socialism are mutually incompatible.

    Okay, maybe it’s a question of definitions. What do you mean by “libertarianism” and what do you mean by “socialism” when you say they’re incompatible.

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  153. ShawnLH (4,330 comments) says:

    By Libertarian I mean the political philosophy based on the non-aggression axiom.

    “The basic axiom of libertarian political theory holds that every man is a self owner, having absolute jurisdiction over his own body. In effect, this means that no one else may justly invade, or aggress against, another’s person. It follows then that each person justly owns whatever previously unowned resources he appropriates or “mixes his labor with.” From these twin axioms — self-ownership and “homesteading” — stem the justification for the entire system of property rights titles in a free-market society. This system establishes the right of every man to his own person, the right of donation, of bequest (and, concomitantly, the right to receive the bequest or inheritance), and the right of contractual exchange of property titles.” – Murray Rothbard.

    Socialism is the philosophy of common or communal ownership of property created through the initiation of force against individuals and their property.

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  154. ShawnLH (4,330 comments) says:

    I would not consider common ownership of property in a voluntary covenant community to be a form of Socialism as such a community would still be operating under a valid definition and practice of private property.

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  155. Ryan Sproull (7,056 comments) says:

    Okay. Well, that’s the problem. Rothbard came along quite some time after the word “libertarian” was already being used to mean something related, but different.

    Anarchists (libertarian socialists) aren’t using your definition of either “libertarian” or “socialist”.

    By “libertarian”, they mean a rejection of authoritarian hierarchy, especially in its form as the state.

    By “socialist”, they mean an economic system in which the worker owns the full product of his or her labour, especially as contrasted against capitalist economic systems.

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  156. ShawnLH (4,330 comments) says:

    “By “libertarian”, they mean a rejection of authoritarian hierarchy, especially in its form as the state.

    By “socialist”, they mean an economic system in which the worker owns the full product of his or her labour, especially as contrasted against capitalist economic systems.”

    How can the second be achieved without the former? If a “worker” (business owner are workers too) is working for an employer, then how can they own the full product of their labour? And how can such a re-distributive system be achieved without resorting to authoritarian coercion?

    Also, does the rejection of any hierarchy apply to everyone, including children? Do not fathers and mothers exercise authority over their children? What if you need to organize some form of policing or common defense? Can that be done with no authoritarian hierarchy?

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  157. Ryan Sproull (7,056 comments) says:

    How can the second be achieved without the former? If a “worker” (business owner are workers too) is working for an employer, then how can they own the full product of their labour?

    Well, what do you mean by “working for” as opposed to “working with”? Business owners are workers in so far as they work. What anti-capitalists reject is the unfairness of non-working capital owners profiting from workers’ labour, by virtue of ownership.

    And how can such a re-distributive system be achieved without resorting to authoritarian coercion?

    A system where the product of the worker’s labour is taken by the worker’s employer (in exchange for pay that is, by definition, less than the product’s value) is the redistributive system that requires authoritarian coercion, surely.

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  158. ShawnLH (4,330 comments) says:

    “What anti-capitalists reject is the unfairness of non-working capital owners profiting from workers’ labour, by virtue of ownership.”

    How is that unfair? The employee is compensated for their work, but that is the point. It is the work itself they are compensated for, not the finished product. And even if the owner does not work, which would be a rarity, the ownership is just because property rights are just, and the worker is not forced to work for them.

    “A system where the product of the worker’s labour is taken by the worker’s employer (in exchange for pay that is, by definition, less than the product’s value) is the redistributive system that requires authoritarian coercion, surely.”

    Not at all. If for example I work for a business that makes computers, and my part of the job is working on one part of the software, how can I lay claim to the entire finished product when in fact I only contributed labour for one part of that product? That does not sound like fairness or just compensation, it sounds like theft.

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  159. dime (9,607 comments) says:

    “By “socialist”, they mean an economic system in which the worker owns the full product of his or her labour, especially as contrasted against capitalist economic systems.”

    so they want to go bak to living off the land and bartering? fun

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  160. dime (9,607 comments) says:

    “If for example I work for a business that makes computers, and my part of the job is working on one part of the software, how can I lay claim to the entire finished product when in fact I only contributed labour for one part of that product? That does not sound like fairness or just compensation, it sounds like theft.”

    heh i was about to ask – who owns the iphone?

    ill let you two continue :)

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  161. ShawnLH (4,330 comments) says:

    Yup, I’m seeing the same old same old here. In all forms of socialism, the basic principle is stealing. I contribute labour for one part of of a product. Then I think “well that’s not “fair” I want the whole thing!” Yes it IS fair, and demanding that I be compensated for what I did not in fact labour for or produce is just an attempt to steal what is not rightfully mine.

    Lets say I’m an artist. I labour with blood, sweat and tears for ten years to produce a magnificent work of art. Then I decide it needs a picture frame before I sell it. I go out and pay another person to make a frame that takes a day or two to make. I go to sell my art, and the guy who made the frame confronts me and says “Hey! I made the frame, therefore I should also have half the money you make on the painting!”

    On what planet would anyone consider that claim to be fair???

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  162. ShawnLH (4,330 comments) says:

    Gotta go, ironically, to work! Bye for now.

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  163. Ryan Sproull (7,056 comments) says:

    “What anti-capitalists reject is the unfairness of non-working capital owners profiting from workers’ labour, by virtue of ownership.”

    How is that unfair? The employee is compensated for their work, but that is the point. It is the work itself they are compensated for, not the finished product. And even if the owner does not work, which would be a rarity, the ownership is just because property rights are just, and the worker is not forced to work for them.

    Socialists disagree that capitalist property rights are just. The fact that the worker is not forced to work for any one particular employer sounds like freedom, but the worker is forced to work for someone, or else starve. And the Someones for whom they can work are a class of people, capital owners. It’s no more a defence than saying that slavery would be okay if slaves could pick between masters.

    As you say, the work is compensated for, not the product that the work produces. It is within that gap between the two that capitalism’s thievery occurs.

    “A system where the product of the worker’s labour is taken by the worker’s employer (in exchange for pay that is, by definition, less than the product’s value) is the redistributive system that requires authoritarian coercion, surely.”

    Not at all. If for example I work for a business that makes computers, and my part of the job is working on one part of the software, how can I lay claim to the entire finished product when in fact I only contributed labour for one part of that product? That does not sound like fairness or just compensation, it sounds like theft.

    You’re right. The situation you describe there does sound unfair, does sound like theft. If everyone who contributed labour to the creation of the product was rewarded proportionately to their contribution, would that be fairer?

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  164. Ryan Sproull (7,056 comments) says:

    Yup, I’m seeing the same old same old here. In all forms of socialism, the basic principle is stealing. I contribute labour for one part of of a product. Then I think “well that’s not “fair” I want the whole thing!” Yes it IS fair, and demanding that I be compensated for what I did not in fact labour for or produce is just an attempt to steal what is not rightfully mine.

    Shawn, being compensated for what you did not in fact labour for or produce is what capitalism is all about.

    I am not saying that you should have the “whole thing” of any product you’ve contributed to. If you work with other people on creating something of value, the product of your labour is part of the value of that group output. That is what you are entitled to, and that is what is stolen in capitalism.

    Lets say I’m an artist. I labour with blood, sweat and tears for ten years to produce a magnificent work of art. Then I decide it needs a picture frame before I sell it. I go out and pay another person to make a frame that takes a day or two to make. I go to sell my art, and the guy who made the frame confronts me and says “Hey! I made the frame, therefore I should also have half the money you make on the painting!”

    On what planet would anyone consider that claim to be fair???

    That is not what I am saying, and it’s bizarre that you genuinely think that I could be saying that. I’ll clarify:

    You are entitled to the full product of your labour. That is not the same thing as saying that you are entitled to the whole of anything you’ve ever worked on with other people. If you worked on it with other people, you are all entitled to your share of your contribution.

    The complaint of anti-capitalists is that, under capitalism, there is a non-productive person who is considered entitled to the whole of what has been created by the productive people, and he or she compensates those workers by paying them less than the value of what they’ve made, and pockets the difference. That’s a bit of a cartoonish oversimplification, but hopefully it addresses the misunderstanding.

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  165. griffith (1,111 comments) says:

    The work available is being manipulated by the importation of labour with a lower expectation of recompense. The statistics are full of those who take state subsidy as more valuable than giving their life towards someone elses capital gains. Immigration keeps the kiwi labour market cheap . As i have stated our land which provides nz inc income is a finite resource. Growing the population dilutes the possible benefit in living standards rise we can sustain with our primary industry based economy.Since the eightys this has been known yet national ignores it on the altar of a competitive labour market driving an as yet mythical manufacturing sector. Most gains we have made not based on primary industry are from lifestyle based innovators. industrys such as Wine and marine directly others like it because we attract retain innovators who chose lifestyle over income. Immigration is a sure way of destroying this lifestyle advantage.

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  166. itstricky (1,681 comments) says:

    That sounds sensible Ryan – however – typically the capital owner, although possibly being non-productive, has usually had to put something forth such as money as an initial investment as a shareholder or personal risk to hire staff, right? So that is their contribution and reward. Again I guess that is of lesser issue to socialists in a classic NZ SME environment but more in a corporate multinational?

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  167. Yoza (1,653 comments) says:

    ShawnLH (288 comments) says:
    March 11th, 2014 at 2:23 pm

    Also, does the rejection of any hierarchy apply to everyone, including children? Do not fathers and mothers exercise authority over their children? What if you need to organize some form of policing or common defense? Can that be done with no authoritarian hierarchy?

    Anarchism (Libertarian socialism), as I understand it, is not the outright rejection of authority or hierarchies. It is the rejection of illegitimate forms of authority and it places the onus on those exercising authority the burden of proving they are doing so in a way that those subject to that authority can accept as legitimate.

    Do not fathers and mothers exercise authority over their children?

    A commonly used example of a legitimate exercise of authority is the parent grabbing the child to prevent her running out into busy traffic. Any parent should always be aware of how they are interacting with their children and be highly conscious of how they are exercising the authority inherent in parenting.

    griffith (29 comments) says:
    March 11th, 2014 at 3:32 pm

    The work available is being manipulated by the importation of labour with a lower expectation of recompense. The statistics are full of those who take state subsidy as more valuable than giving their life towards someone elses capital gains. Immigration keeps the kiwi labour market cheap.

    This is a consequence of disorganised international labour and an unwillingness of Westerners generally to support the conditions and recompense of people struggling to survive in subject economies, if conditions weren’t so crap where these people are coming from they wouldn’t so readily accept low pay here.
    Although, I think you will find that immigration tends to have a positive economic effect in the long term.

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  168. Yoza (1,653 comments) says:

    griffith (29 comments) says:
    March 11th, 2014 at 3:32 pm

    The work available is being manipulated by the importation of labour with a lower expectation of recompense.

    Another thing. If this is an issue then those who feel they are being displaced need to work with those taking the lower pay to organise for better conditions and wages, because you can guarantee that those reaping the benefit of employing low paid recent immigrants are going to work assiduously to ensure such a condition remains the norm.

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  169. Ryan Sproull (7,056 comments) says:

    That sounds sensible Ryan – however – typically the capital owner, although possibly being non-productive, has usually had to put something forth such as money as an initial investment as a shareholder or personal risk to hire staff, right? So that is their contribution and reward. Again I guess that is of lesser issue to socialists in a classic NZ SME environment but more in a corporate multinational?

    itstricky,

    Yes, you’re quite right that within a capitalist framework, one of the functions served by capital owners is that direction of labour into new ventures, risky in particular but necessary for the progress of the economy in general, and that the capitalist system incentivises this entrepreneurism with the potential for great rewards.

    And yes, as you note, the small-business entrepreneur is least offensive form of capital owner to the socialist. They often for years pay themselves far less than the value of the product of their long hard hours in order to see the business succeed, paying staff as well as possible, dealing with them personally, creating jobs as the business grows.

    What makes him so inoffensive is that hands-on hard work contribution he makes, rather than the risk of losing invested capital – the ownership of which is, after all, basically an agreed-upon collective hallucination in our society that only occasionally has to be enforced by the actual violence of the State (the Occupy events, for example). It’s the very contribution-by-labour that makes the small-business entrepreneur a bit heroic to most socialists I’ve met.

    And so, naturally, that’s the caricature that’s rolled out and displayed whenever anyone questions the justice of the wealth enjoyed by the global capital-owning class.

    But as you also correctly note (refreshing!), it’s in corporate multinationals where the thievery of capitalism is exaggerated exponentially and the redeeming features of the small-business owner – doing actual work to contribute, knowing employees personally, creating something from nothing, paying as well as possible – are infinitesimally diminished.

    One or two founders doing actual work is replaced with thousands of shareholders through mutual funds seeing an average 9% return on diverse portfolios. They don’t know their employees’ names, and their hands-on representatives have an obligation to pay as few people as possible as little as possible to maximise profits, or they’ll be replaced with someone who will.

    That’s the mistake that many people make when thinking about these things, socialists included – the issues are systemic, dynamic, larger than any one person. No one is cackling behind the scenes and rubbing their hands together deciding whom to exploit next. It’s all just individual people acting on the incentives the system has provided them, being rewarded when they succeed by the terms of the system, responding to the personal sticks and carrots the system creates.

    We just have nice carrots in the West. And the sticks are too far removed for most of us to be aware of, let alone see the connection between the two.

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  170. itstricky (1,681 comments) says:

    Good thoughts Ryan – have to say I’d agree with most of that. Pity no one stuck around to debate it. I guess they’re all off shooting from the hip some classy put downs of ex-PMs-from-six-years-ago that they despise like real clever buggers.

    This goes some way to explaining the current bug bear I have which is that of a median wage that appears stuck for 20 years whilst the salaries at the top hit multiples of that that have been unheard of until this point -: mostly unpegged against any sort of measure of public good nor shareholder return. Company lost $50mil this year? Sure thing, here’s another $1mil bonus. Try harder next time, a? Maybe you didn’t cut enough staff this time around? It’s difficult to understand how this came about under the current system.

    I guess something that might break that carrot-stick cycle in the multinationals is consumer choice revolutionised by traditional market barriers being broken down and ethical shareholding.

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  171. Ryan Sproull (7,056 comments) says:

    I guess something that might break that carrot-stick cycle in the multinationals is consumer choice revolutionised by traditional market barriers being broken down and ethical shareholding.

    Well, there are certainly moves in that direction. I mean, to a large degree, the middle class of the privileged countries of the world are the market. We’re the people who make or break trends and brands. The entire marketing industry is predicated on this fact – it doesn’t cater to the interests of the global poor or the 85 wealthiest people in the world; it caters to us.

    There’s an app called Buycott, which is basically a dream I had 10 years ago come true. It crowd-sources causes and boycotts from users, lets you pick your causes, scan the barcodes of items you’re considering buying and tells you if you’d be funding something you find morally abhorrent by doing so. That’s a step in the right direction.

    And we’re all actually one-percenters. We’re the global elite. Anyone over NZ$50K is a global one-percenter. Sure, within our contexts, there are people exponentially wealthier than we are, by virtue of their massive capital assets. But we’re actually some of the most powerful people in the world – literate, internet access, healthcare, disposable income, not living in terror of starving or being killed, having some influence over the most influential organisations in the world: Western states and multinational corporations.

    Good thing all we do is vote once every three years.

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  172. itstricky (1,681 comments) says:

    Yep pretty much what I was getting at. The power to change has been put into one’s hands. The app is interesting. You wonder how susceptible it is to abuse as it’s so open I.e someone campaigning on the back of a grudge or competition. All “rating and review” sites suffer from this sort of thing a bit.

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  173. ShawnLH (4,330 comments) says:

    “Socialists disagree that capitalist property rights are just. The fact that the worker is not forced to work for any one particular employer sounds like freedom, but the worker is forced to work for someone, or else starve.”

    I don’t see how that is true. Freedom to choose is freedom to choose, and the “worker” has a number of choices, including starting his own business, or joining a cooperative (assuming a true free market).

    “It’s no more a defence than saying that slavery would be okay if slaves could pick between masters.”

    Slaves don’t get paid. That is the basic problem I see with your understanding. Those who work for an employer are paid for their work. Slaves are not.

    “As you say, the work is compensated for, not the product that the work produces. It is within that gap between the two that capitalism’s thievery occurs.”

    I’ll need you to explain this a bit more. I’m not getting the “gap” bit and what this entails, and how it entails theft.

    “Shawn, being compensated for what you did not in fact labour for or produce is what capitalism is all about.”

    Give me an example. I suspect I think I know what you mean, but would appreciate clarification. But I’ll take a preliminary stab at it.

    IF your saying that because the actual physical labour was not done by the employer, the problem I see is that the physical labour by the employee itself was only possible because the owner provided the business in which the labour takes place in the first place.

    ” If you work with other people on creating something of value, the product of your labour is part of the value of that group output. That is what you are entitled to, and that is what is stolen in capitalism.”

    How? If you have been paid for your labour (remember, it is the labour that is, rightly, being compensated for, not the product) then how have you been stolen from? I suspect you may use the word “fair” here again, but fairness is a totally subjective idea that has no objective economic value. One mans “fairness” is not always the same as another’s. This is where the Austrian Schools insight into the subjective nature of economic value is useful. And I still do not see how, if I am paid for my labour, I have some claim to the finished product.

    “The complaint of anti-capitalists is that, under capitalism, there is a non-productive person who is considered entitled to the whole of what has been created by the productive people”

    Except there is no such thing in a business as a “non-productive” person. If I start a business, or invent a product, or even if I am made CEO of a pre-existing business, I have contributed labour somewhere at some point, and will continue to do so. I cannot see any “non productive” people involved in business. Of course I suspect you and I will have different understandings of what is or is not productive.

    The only non-productive people in an economy are those on welfare.

    “and he or she compensates those workers by paying them less than the value of what they’ve made”

    Of course. Because you can only pay employees for their labour, not the value of the finished product. Their only just claim is to the actual labour they did. That that may not add up to the value of the finished product is not unfair at all. Moreover, the very nature of the market means that finished products have no fixed value. That value is not assigned by the employer, but by the market, or more specifically, the value of a finished product depends entirely on how many people think the product has value and choose to buy it.

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  174. ShawnLH (4,330 comments) says:

    Yoza,

    “Anarchism (Libertarian socialism), as I understand it, is not the outright rejection of authority or hierarchies. It is the rejection of illegitimate forms of authority and it places the onus on those exercising authority the burden of proving they are doing so in a way that those subject to that authority can accept as legitimate.”

    Anarcho-Capitalists would agree with that. Hence the importance of radical decentralization of authority, and the existence of multiple authorities.

    If anyone here has read Neal Stephenson’s ‘Snow Crash’ they will understand what I’m getting at.

    In a real free market people would have the freedom to choose whatever authorities they wish to associate with. This is why, ultimately, and contra the Left, globalisation and the reduction of the power of the “democratic” nation state are a good thing.

    And on the subject of free markets and trade, what is currently defines as “free trade” by crony capitalism does not remotely pass muster with Anarcho-Capitalists. A great deal of injustice occurs in our current “free trade/neo-liberal” system precisely because, far from being free, we have alliances and shoddy backroom deals between big business AND big government.

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  175. Yoza (1,653 comments) says:

    ShawnLH (307 comments) says:
    March 12th, 2014 at 3:26 pm

    “Socialists disagree that capitalist property rights are just. The fact that the worker is not forced to work for any one particular employer sounds like freedom, but the worker is forced to work for someone, or else starve.”

    I don’t see how that is true. Freedom to choose is freedom to choose, and the “worker” has a number of choices, including starting his own business, or joining a cooperative (assuming a true free market).

    It is one of the illusions of the modern system, most especially the Western model, to insist the choices on offer are all the choices available. Unless you are a Gina Rinehart your choices are limited, the lower your socioeconomic status the more limited your choices become. The choice of renting yourself to someone else is not really a choice if the alternative ‘choice’ is the humiliation and desperation caused by being unemployed. The ideal scenario would be one where the individual could choose to rent themselves out to others from a position devoid of desperate circumstance, then we would be able to judge how freely people would be willing to accept losing such a large proportion of time from their lives.

    Slaves don’t get paid. That is the basic problem I see with your understanding. Those who work for an employer are paid for their work. Slaves are not.

    When slavery ended in the Southern states of the US there was not a mystical transformation that provided livable circumstances for the former slaves. With slavery the owners of the slaves were motivated to provide reasonable shelter and food out of necessity – the healthier your slave the more work could be expected of them – with freedom it is speculated that hundreds of thousands of the former slaves died from starvation and disease. Sharecropping became a more sophisticated form of slavery, where the slave was provided with the illusion of working for themselves while serving the same masters under similarly odious conditions. Scoot forward a hundred years and the descendants of the slaves and sharecroppers are still subjugated in a system of debt through the attempt to pay for unreachable cultivated expectations like decent housing, a reasonable education, self-respect, what-have-you… .

    The modern system of wage-slavery isn’t something unique to African-americans living in the US. People everywhere are coerced into servitude through the manipulation of economic circumstance by those whom the system serves.
    I think it may have been the ‘Yes Men’ documentary that made the point that the traditional form of slavery in modern Western states is economically nonviable. It is far cheaper to pay a pittance to a factory employee in somewhere like Bangladesh or Cambodia than it is to accommodate and feed a slave in any modern economy.

    Give me an example. I suspect I think I know what you mean, but would appreciate clarification. But I’ll take a preliminary stab at it.

    IF your saying that because the actual physical labour was not done by the employer, the problem I see is that the physical labour by the employee itself was only possible because the owner provided the business in which the labour takes place in the first place.

    Shall we return to that great little Aussie battler Gina Rinehart? Here is a person whose contribution to her status was being born. Would there be iron ore mines without Gina Rinehart? Absolutely. Do mines need to be owned by private interests to provide employment? Absolutely not.
    There is a Chomsky quote, something along the lines of ‘propaganda is to democracy what violence is to the dictatorship’, the mythical benevolent employing class providing opportunity and wealth to all is steadily becoming an untenable fantasy. There will always be work that needs to be done and people who are prepared to do it, having some middle-person profiting without contributing is unnecessarily inefficient. Production at Gina Rinehart’s mines would be greatly increased if those who worked them owned a proportionate share and Gina Rinehart was completely out of the picture.

    Except there is no such thing in a business as a “non-productive” person.

    Yes there is, the non-contributing shareholder like, … well, … Gina Rinehart!

    The only non-productive people in an economy are those on welfare.

    GINA RINEHART!

    In a real free market people would have the freedom to choose whatever authorities they wish to associate with. This is why, ultimately, and contra the Left, globalisation and the reduction of the power of the “democratic” nation state are a good thing.

    This is one of those ideas that most Libertarian Socialists would approach with a great deal of cynicism. You’re talking about replacing marginally democratic nation states with massive global private tyrannies. Some would argue that this condition is already in effect and the modern nation state is the facade big business uses to maintain the illusion of ‘free choice’ – I love the John Dewey quote: “As long as politics is the shadow cast on society by big business, the attenuation of the shadow will not change the substance.” People can vote for whoever they want, but those that they vote into power are restricted in what they can do by the private corporations that control financial capital and resources.

    Globalisation would be a great idea if it meant more than freeing up the ability of financial capital to flit from country to country and the private owners of production could blackmail governments into accepting miserable conditions for their domestic populations.

    I honestly believe we are approaching those ‘interesting times’ apocryphally attributed to the ancient Chinese. As a consequence of the efficient destruction of the only habitat we have that assures our survival we will, by necessity, be forced to cooperate and coordinate our efforts in a mutually beneficial fashion to ensure the survival of the species. One of the South American delegates at an IPCC conference over a decade ago made the salient point that, ‘we are all in the same boat and there is no way only half the boat is going to sink’.

    Workers can survive without the wealthy, but without workers there can be no such thing as ‘the wealthy’.

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  176. griffith (1,111 comments) says:

    The Social contract is not going to be recognized by the libertine system one proposes. The other is blind to the benefits of the flow of capital in a market driven society. unfortunately I lean towards neolib and actual science. doomed to bashing wingnuts I politically agreed with. The accountant in me says when risk is pushing 95% we will have fucked the ecosphere sufficient to decimate civilization by 2025. its time for some action now

    There is a total co2 budget.
    The range of supported models have a sensitivity 1.5- 4.5 C for double co2
    Recent research is ruling out below 2 C as our understanding of the “pause” in warming increases.
    El Nino now reported likely Watch the weather get “changed” more :lol:
    2 is the international agreed level of warming .
    We reach that in around 15 years. we need to stretch the emissions out longer as we transition not debate with wingnuts

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  177. ShawnLH (4,330 comments) says:

    “less you are a Gina Rinehart your choices are limited, the lower your socioeconomic status the more limited your choices become. ”

    Nonsense. This is the lie the Left tells the poor in order to keep them poor, because they reason for the Left’s existence goes out the door if the poor disobey the Left wing playbook and choose to get out of poverty.

    Both my adoptive father and myself were born into poverty. Serious poverty. My father died a wealthy man, and while not rich i’m not uncomfortable myself. Why? Because we believed we had choices. We used our time and the small resources we had (Mises; Human Action) to grow more resources, thus widening our choices.

    I accept that your claim might be true for those living in permanent geographic crapholes like the the Horn of Africa. It is not at all true in any industrialized, partially capitalist system.

    “the mythical benevolent employing class providing opportunity and wealth to all is steadily becoming an untenable fantasy.”

    Nonsesnse again. Providing jobs and pay to people is very much a benevolence. Quoting that nutjob Chomsky wil just make me laugh at you.

    “Shall we return to that great little Aussie battler Gina Rinehart?”

    Why not. Here is a person who’s family created wealth for themselves and others, and she very justly was bequeathed that wealth. She is a battler, against a predatory State that steals and against those like you promoting slave ideologies and the politics of envy.

    “You’re talking about replacing marginally democratic nation states with massive global private tyrannies. ”

    No, I’m talking about replacing massive “democratic” tyrannies with genuine freedom and voluntary societies.

    The worst tyrannies in the world right now? North Korea. Cuba. Mass starvation. Political prisons. Death squads. Family members disappearing in the night. Neither NK nor Cuba are corporations.

    McDonalds just makes hamburgers.

    “As long as politics is the shadow cast on society by big business”

    There is no “big business” shadow. That shadow is the armed State, which is vastly more powerful than any private business of any sort.

    “and the private owners of production could blackmail governments into accepting miserable conditions for their domestic populations”

    Those “miserable” conditions are created by the predatory State destroying productivity through taxation, violation of property rights, central bank fiat currency, and the brainwashing of the poor by the paternalistic Left they they are slaves who cannot save themselves until the Marxist pie in the sky of the Glorious Revolution comes. At which point they will be saved from poverty by being starved to death.

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  178. ShawnLH (4,330 comments) says:

    When big business does do bad things, it is almost always a result of being supported by the armed State. The State is the problem, not private business.

    The current financial crisis was the direct result of the State interfering in the housing market on the one hand, and printing more fiat currency on the other, to create an artificial boom. The roots of the problem in the US go back to the Dem’s forcing, through regulation, banks and mortgage lenders to give credit to those with poor credit ratings, because not to do so was “discrimination against the poor” according to the Left. The result, which Austrian School economists predicted long before anyone else, was a global housing and credit bubble that was sooner or later going to burst.

    Greece’s meltdown was a result of the countries system of direct democracy, which allowed people to vote themselves bread and circuses.

    The State is the problem, not private business.

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  179. ShawnLH (4,330 comments) says:

    “According to the pronouncements of our state rulers and their intellectual bodyguards (of whom there are more than ever before), we are better protected and more secure than ever. We are supposedly protected from global warming and cooling, from the extinction of animals and plants, from the abuses of husbands and wives, parents and employers, from poverty, disease, disaster, ignorance, prejudice, racism, sexism, homophobia, and countless other public enemies and dangers. In fact, however, matters are strikingly different. In order to provide us with all this protection, the state managers expropriate more than 40 percent of the incomes of private producers year in and year out. Government debt and liabilities have increased without interruption, thus increasing the need for future expropriations. Owing to the substitution of government paper money for gold, financial insecurity has increased sharply, and we are continually robbed through currency depreciation. Every detail of private life, property, trade, and contract is regulated by ever higher mountains of laws and legislation, thereby creating permanent legal uncertainty and moral hazard. In particular, we have been gradually stripped of the right to exclusion implied in the very concept of private property. … In short, the more the state has increased its expenditures on social security and public safety, the more our private property rights have been eroded, the more our property has been expropriated, confiscated, destroyed, or depreciated, and the more we have been deprived of the very foundation of all protection: economic independence, financial strength, and personal wealth.”

    Hans-Hermann Hoppe.

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  180. griffith (1,111 comments) says:

    We are not protected from global warming . Your fetish is going to destroy humanity. Reality does not have “freedom” attached

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  181. ShawnLH (4,330 comments) says:

    Griffith,

    Freedom from oppression is a “fetish”???

    That’s a disturbing attitude.

    And reality clearly, and observably, does have freedom attached. I if I go out my door, I can choose to go right or left. Thus, reality includes freedom.

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  182. Ryan Sproull (7,056 comments) says:

    “Socialists disagree that capitalist property rights are just. The fact that the worker is not forced to work for any one particular employer sounds like freedom, but the worker is forced to work for someone, or else starve.”

    I don’t see how that is true. Freedom to choose is freedom to choose, and the “worker” has a number of choices, including starting his own business, or joining a cooperative (assuming a true free market).

    “It’s no more a defence than saying that slavery would be okay if slaves could pick between masters.”

    Slaves don’t get paid. That is the basic problem I see with your understanding. Those who work for an employer are paid for their work. Slaves are not.

    Slaves get paid in housing and food. If they want better housing and food, they can choose a different master.

    “As you say, the work is compensated for, not the product that the work produces. It is within that gap between the two that capitalism’s thievery occurs.”
    I’ll need you to explain this a bit more. I’m not getting the “gap” bit and what this entails, and how it entails theft.

    By “theft”, I mean someone taking from you your rightful property.

    The people who rightfully own products of labour are the people who do the work.

    The value of the product of their labour is determined by the free market.

    A system in which a person who does no work towards creating the product, then owns the product and sells it for more than the people who did the work were paid is a system where those people who did the work have their rightful property (the full value of the product of their labour) taken from them.

    Give me an example. I suspect I think I know what you mean, but would appreciate clarification. But I’ll take a preliminary stab at it.

    IF your saying that because the actual physical labour was not done by the employer, the problem I see is that the physical labour by the employee itself was only possible because the owner provided the business in which the labour takes place in the first place.

    Sure, but the sentence you just wrote makes sense only within the capitalist system. You could just as easily say, “If you’re saying that because the actual physical labour was not done by the Emperor, the problem I see is that the physical labour by the subject itself was only possible because the Emperor provided the business in which the labour takes place in the first place.”

    The work could literally have been done without “the owner providing the business”. The product is produced through the application of skilled effort to raw materials using tools on land. The onus is on the “owner” to explain what he brings to the table at all, let alone that he is so integral that he enjoys the full value of the product of the labour (after paying wages, which must be less than the value they created, for him to profit, and will be as little as the competition of the labour market can achieve).

    ” If you work with other people on creating something of value, the product of your labour is part of the value of that group output. That is what you are entitled to, and that is what is stolen in capitalism.”

    How? If you have been paid for your labour (remember, it is the labour that is, rightly, being compensated for, not the product) then how have you been stolen from? I suspect you may use the word “fair” here again, but fairness is a totally subjective idea that has no objective economic value. One mans “fairness” is not always the same as another’s. This is where the Austrian Schools insight into the subjective nature of economic value is useful. And I still do not see how, if I am paid for my labour, I have some claim to the finished product.

    This, I think, is the fundamental difference in our thinking. You see labour as having value determined by the labour market and its product having value determined by the sales market. You see owners as the buyers of labour and the sellers of products, and when they profit from the difference between the price of the two, that’s all well and good because the prices of both were determined in a manner you consider fair and square.

    I see labour’s value being determined by the value of its product. Someone whose work creates something for which another will pay $100 is someone who has done $100 worth of work. Owners, as owners, contribute nothing and deserve no compensation.

    You say that fairness is subjective, but I don’t think you’ll find many people who disagree that someone who contributes nothing deserves nothing when others did all of the work.

    “The complaint of anti-capitalists is that, under capitalism, there is a non-productive person who is considered entitled to the whole of what has been created by the productive people”

    Except there is no such thing in a business as a “non-productive” person. If I start a business, or invent a product, or even if I am made CEO of a pre-existing business, I have contributed labour somewhere at some point, and will continue to do so. I cannot see any “non productive” people involved in business. Of course I suspect you and I will have different understandings of what is or is not productive.

    Starting a business, inventing a product, acting as CEO – you describe doing things to justify compensation, because you have the same principle of fairness that I do. To justify reward, you point to labour. (Organising a business, inventing a product, acting as CEO are all labour.)

    Now, I buy your business, or shares in it, and part of the product of your work and everyone else in the business’s work belongs to me – the profit. What do I contribute to justify my ownership of part of the sales value of what you and your coworkers have made?

    The only non-productive people in an economy are those on welfare.

    They are the least-rewarded of the non-productive people in our economy. An interesting thought experiment is to ask what would happen if they bought some raw materials, went into an unused building at 2am and used idle equipment to create something they could sell.

    “and he or she compensates those workers by paying them less than the value of what they’ve made”

    Of course. Because you can only pay employees for their labour, not the value of the finished product. Their only just claim is to the actual labour they did. That that may not add up to the value of the finished product is not unfair at all. Moreover, the very nature of the market means that finished products have no fixed value. That value is not assigned by the employer, but by the market, or more specifically, the value of a finished product depends entirely on how many people think the product has value and choose to buy it.

    As you’ll now have read above, I have no problem with the market determining the value of the product of labour.

    Can you explain further this statement? “That the value of the labour they did may not add up to the value of the finished product is not unfair at all.” Keep in mind that I consider the CEO to be a worker who contributed to the value of the finished product.

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  183. Ryan Sproull (7,056 comments) says:

    I can’t recommend enough this 1888 classic from Benjamin Tucker – his article State Socialism and Anarchism: How Far They Agree and Wherein They Differ. It is the first article in his excellent collection, “Instead of a Book by a Man Too Busy to Write One”.

    From Adam Smith’s principle that labour is the true measure of price – or, as Josiah Warren phrased it, that cost is the proper limit of price – these three men [Proudhon, Warren, Marx] made the following deductions: that the natural wage of labour is its product; that this wage, or product, is the only just source of income (leaving out, of course, gift, inheritance, etc.); that all who derive income from any other source abstract it directly or indirectly from the natural and just wage of labour; that this abstracting process generally takes one of three forms – interest, rent and profit; that these three constitute the trinity of usury, and are simply different methods of levying tribute for the use of capital; that, capital being simply stored-up labour which has already received its pay in full, its use ought to be gratuitous, on the principle that labour is the only basis of price; that the lender of capital is entitled to its return intact, and nothing more; that the only reason why the banker, the stockholder, the landlord, the manufacturer, and the merchant are able to exact usury from labour lies in the fact that they are backed by legal privilege, or monopoly; and that the only way to secure labour the enjoyment of its entire product, or natural wage, is to strike down monopoly.

    He describes State Socialism’s proposed solution, and then condemns it. Keep in mind he wrote this in 1888.

    What other applications this principle of Authority, once adopted in the economic sphere, will develop is very evident. It means the absolute control by the majority of all individual conduct. The right of such control is already admitted by the State Socialists, though they maintain that, as a matter of fact, the individual would be allowed a much larger liberty than he now enjoys. But he would only be allowed it; he could not claim it as his own. There would be no foundation of society upon a guaranteed equality of the largest possible liberty. Such liberty as might exist would exist by sufferance and could be taken away at any moment. Constitutional guarantees would be of no avail. There would be but one article in the constitution of a State Socialistic country: The right of the majority is absolute.

    The claim of the State Socialists, however, that this right would not be exercised in matters pertaining to the individual in the more intimate and private relations of his life is not borne out by the history of governments. It has ever been the tendency of power to add to itself, to enlarge its sphere, to encroach beyond the limits set for it; and where the habit of resisting such encroachment is not fostered, and the individual is not taught to be jealous of his rights, individuality gradually disappears and the government or State becomes the all-in-all. Control naturally accompanies responsibility. Under the system of State Socialism, therefore, which holds the community responsible for the health, wealth, and wisdom of the individual, it is evidence that the community, through its majority expression, will insist more and more in prescribing the conditions of health, wealth, and wisdom, thus impairing and finally destroying individual independence and with it all sense of individual responsibility.

    Whatever, then, the State Socialists may claim or disclaim, their system, if adopted, is doomed to end in a State religion, to the expense of which all must contribute and at the altar of which all must knee; a State school of medicine, by whose practitioners the sick must invariably be treated; a State system of hygiene, prescribing what all must and must not eat, drink, wear, and do; a State code of morals, which will not content itself with punishing crime, but will prohibit what the majority decide to be vice; a State system of instruction, which will do away with all private schools, academies, and colleges; a State nursery, in which all children must be brought up in common at the public expense; and, finally, a State family, with an attempt at stirpiculture, or scientific breeding, in which no man and woman will be allowed to have children if the State prohibits them and no man and woman can refuse to have children if the State orders them. Thus will Authority achieve its acme and Monopoly be carried to its highest power.

    It’s a good read, not long, and details the differences and similarities between state socialism and libertarian socialism.

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  184. Yoza (1,653 comments) says:

    ShawnLH (333 comments) says:
    March 13th, 2014 at 2:14 am

    “less you are a Gina Rinehart your choices are limited, the lower your socioeconomic status the more limited your choices become. ”

    Nonsense. This is the lie the Left tells the poor in order to keep them poor, because they reason for the Left’s existence goes out the door if the poor disobey the Left wing playbook and choose to get out of poverty.

    If the wealthy were allowed the same amount of choice as the poor, what would be the point of being wealthy? Far from nonsense it is so glaringly obvious it seems almost banal to have to point it out.

    Both my adoptive father and myself were born into poverty.

    The weird thing is practically all the personal anecdotes people provide on Kiwiblog follow the same line: “We were poor, but I pulled myself up by my bootstraps and really made something of myself.” Using yourself as an example seems utterly meaningless when you are debating a stranger who cannot verify your claim. Don’t care, try again.

    I accept that your claim might be true for those living in permanent geographic crapholes like the the Horn of Africa. It is not at all true in any industrialized, partially capitalist system.

    If my claim is true for those living in a ‘craphole’ like the Horn of Africa it follows that it is true for everyone else. A person living in poverty in a modern Western society has a severely limited series of choices compared to a wealthy person living in the same society, whereas a person living in impoverished circumstances in the Horn of Africa has a severely limited series of choices compared to a person living in poverty in a modern Western society.

    The problem you have is the level of poverty experienced by the impoverished person living in the Horn of Africa is a lot closer to the impoverished person living in a modern Western society than the Western impoverished person is to his wealthy compatriot. The fact is that the very rich are so far removed from the reality experienced by practically everyone else they may as well be living on another planet.
    It probably wouldn’t be so bad if the difference between the wealthy and the poor was just a matter of material possessions or personal wealth. The real problems begins when the wealthy use their economic leverage to influence social policy decisions. A small minority, removed from the experience of the ordinary person, gets to make decisions which effect everyone else. The rule of thumb tends to be that those who seek to influence the decision making process through exploiting the control they have over concentrated capital tend to do so to suit their own ends. Those ‘ends’ have a tendency, or an intent at least, of favouring the interests of those wealthy few who are weidling unelected influence on elected officials.

    [Yoza]“the mythical benevolent employing class providing opportunity and wealth to all is steadily becoming an untenable fantasy.”
    Nonsesnse again. Providing jobs and pay to people is very much a benevolence. Quoting that nutjob Chomsky will just make me laugh at you.

    Employing someone is not an act of benevolence, there can be benevolent employers but employing someone is generally more of a necessary practicality for the employer. In the vast majority of instances employment is more of a carefully calculated cost/benefit analysis. If we take the contemporary marketplace as an example then if all employers were employing out of a sense of benevolence and a bunch of amoral employers turned up and began employing people from a strictly profit maximising basis those former benevolent employers would be wiped out. The current system does not reward benevolence, it rewards cold calculated decisions.

    [Yoza]“Shall we return to that great little Aussie battler Gina Rinehart?”

    Why not. Here is a person who’s family created wealth for themselves and others, and she very justly was bequeathed that wealth. She is a battler, against a predatory State that steals and against those like you promoting slave ideologies and the politics of envy.

    I love Gina Rinehart, if you were going to invent a caricature to demonise the out of touch indifference of the modern ruling elite you would be doing well to invent a Gina Rinehart character. As power mad rich people go she has given more to revolutionary propaganda than Rupert Murdoch, which is really saying something. And she’s a poet! God bless Gina Rinehart!

    [Yoza]“You’re talking about replacing marginally democratic nation states with massive global private tyrannies. ”
    No, I’m talking about replacing massive “democratic” tyrannies with genuine freedom and voluntary societies.

    The worst tyrannies in the world right now? North Korea. Cuba. Mass starvation. Political prisons. Death squads. Family members disappearing in the night. Neither NK nor Cuba are corporations.

    McDonalds just makes hamburgers.

    As bad as countries like North Korea and Cuba are when it comes to human rights abuses they cannot compete with the abuse meted out to people by the petroleum industry alone. North Korea and Cuba just do not possess control of enough resources to compete with the abuse private corporations wreak in the pursuit of maximising profit.

    [Yoza]“As long as politics is the shadow cast on society by big business”

    There is no “big business” shadow. That shadow is the armed State, which is vastly more powerful than any private business of any sort.

    It depends on which states we are talking about. Modern Western states have been rendered utterly dependent on the influence of private capital since the Reaganomics/Thatcherite/neoliberal experiment began. I don’t see how anyone could argue any differently if we look at who has been most generously rewarded through the implementation of the neoliberal economic agenda.

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  185. griffith (1,111 comments) says:

    You may find this interesting

    Nasa-funded study: industrial civilisation headed for ‘irreversible collapse’?
    Natural and social scientists develop new model of how ‘perfect storm’ of crises could unravel global system
    http://www.theguardian.com/environment/earth-insight/2014/mar/14/nasa-civilisation-irreversible-collapse-study-scientists

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  186. Yoza (1,653 comments) says:

    griffith (104 comments) says:
    March 15th, 2014 at 4:30 pm

    You may find this interesting

    Nasa-funded study: industrial civilisation headed for ‘irreversible collapse’?

    I read the link, some of the projections coming out of reputable bodies like NASA are quite chilling.

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  187. griffith (1,111 comments) says:

    If only the right would wake up to reality.
    Its one thing when extremest talk of economic collapse it’s another when outfits like nasa are quantifying the risk. Reading whale and kb is depressing with the wingnut rubbish that has taken over the agw science debate. Give it ten years and if co2 emissions havent significantly changed its curtains for human civilisation as we know it. The 1% will find their position is far worse than they imagine. The italian court case over the failure to inform about earthquake risk is interesting as it foretells what a lot of the deniers are going to face. Pity is the Koch brothers will be too old to face the consequences of their actions.

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  188. Yoza (1,653 comments) says:

    It wouldn’t be so bad if the denial was peculiar to the 1% when the problem seems to be the media response generally, they either present the ‘debate’ as undecided when over 97% of scientists understand the research confirms human induced climate change through global warming or they ignore it altogether. The guys over at Medialens have an article analysing the UK’s media response to the weird weather there (It begins about halfway down the page under the by-line ‘A Flood of Propaganda’.)

    There are worthwhile sites, of which you are probably aware, that deal with debunking denialist PR campaigns: DeSmogBlog, Skeptical Science, RealClimate and of course Nasa Climate.

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  189. wikiriwhis business (3,883 comments) says:

    “I read the link, some of the projections coming out of reputable bodies like NASA are quite chilling.”

    PFFFF…NASA is state run and will mimick the propaganda of the state whilst they get funded by the state.

    I mean honestly!!!!!

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  190. wikiriwhis business (3,883 comments) says:

    “It depends on which states we are talking about. Modern Western states have been rendered utterly dependent on the influence of private capital since the Reaganomics/Thatcherite/neoliberal experiment began. I don’t see how anyone could argue any differently if we look at who has been most generously rewarded through the implementation of the neoliberal economic agenda.”

    This is the intelligent conspiracy that keeps being denied by the vested interests and the gullible sleepers.

    I notice you didn’t get a negative tick . Very interesting

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  191. wikiriwhis business (3,883 comments) says:

    All on board missing Boeing 777 now under scrutiny

    While reluctant to call it a hijacking, Malaysian officials now say they believe somebody inside the plane with expertise in the navigational and communications systems of the Boeing 777 diverted it from its Kuala Lumpur-to-Beijing flight path.

    “In view of this latest development, Malaysian authorities have refocused their investigation into the crew and passengers on board,” Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak said at a news conference Saturday in Kuala Lumpur.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/world/asia/9831232/All-on-board-missing-Boeing-777-now-under-scrutiny

    Notice these things always happen to common people. Never to high placed politicians or investment bankers.

    This is why the Archbishop of London decried the London bombings. It’s always the little people who have to suffer.

    The world gets a virus but not the leaders

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  192. Yoza (1,653 comments) says:

    wikiriwhis business (3,079 comments) says:
    March 16th, 2014 at 12:31 pm

    [Yoza]“I read the link, some of the projections coming out of reputable bodies like NASA are quite chilling.”

    PFFFF…NASA is state run and will mimick the propaganda of the state whilst they get funded by the state.

    I mean honestly!!!!!

    I do not think there are any scientific bodies studying climate change which are not state funded. Nasa’s Earth science division is facing the prospect of cuts, ostensibly to provide more money for its planetary science division but more likely a punishment for the data Nasa provides to support the science supporting anthropogenic global warming.

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