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DA

So diversification is not a case of nonmotivated trade, yes?

 

Individual valuation has little to do with pricing, and all to do with trading.

 

Given the universal rule of no backsies, the refundee is at the complete mercy of the refunder.

 

Intentional actions are motivated.

 

Individual values motivate individually.

 

The universal rule of "no backsies"?  A refundee presumes a refunder, and whatever trade arrangement they establish at the point of sale determines how much will be traded back; no mercy, and no wishing for a greater or lesser refund.

 

Now in terms of Obama's argument, a successful trader doesn't trade exclusively with himself, therefore the effort of others does contribute to some degree to ones own success, but only in the implied social context of trading, i.e. one cannot become a successful trader without a marketplace populated with other traders.  The logical flaw remains that trading per se, doesn't imply success; one can certainly fail at trading too.

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 Well methodological individualism is a major part of Austrian Economics. Although Rand didn't comment on that very much I believe.  

 

 

Economics is a value free science. What economists argue is that the market meets consumer demand, whatever those demands may be. The market provides people tons of bad things all the time.

 

As an example, one of the first areas of privatization in our civilization was that of religion.  Churches gradually went from being state operated entities to private entities dependent on meeting consumer demand. Many religion preach poisonous and harmful ideas, and have been for hundreds of years in a free market.  Another example is fast food or narcotics. 

 

 

Just because Rand's philosophy has nothing to say on these matter doesn't mean they are excluded from thought. Social sciences do have utility. 

 

As an example one may be concerned about Child Abuse. A Rand influenced libertarian named Stefan Molyneux for example has spent a great deal of time using social sciences to help convince people to not spank their children. He cites the correlations between spanking and all of the problems that it can cause the individual and how these individual problems can explain many of the problems that are common in the West. 

 

Another example of how social sciences can be used is by Social Entrepreneurs. These people are paid to solve problems by people who care about specific issues. Our society has becomes so wealthy that now when the average person thinks "This problem sucks and I hate that it exists", he can pay someone to do something about it. This is preferable than just sitting there frustrated about how the world is. Social sciences can help those Entrepreneurs find creative ways of eliminating those problems. 

 

A third example is organizational sociology. Ford had a sociology department for example which was meant to study productivity in his firm. Perhaps a resort company in Mexico needs to hire criminologists to study security issues and figure out how to best deal with crime. A private city could hire a sociologist to figure out the best norms for a community. 

 

What social sciences should not be used for is assuming that the State can somehow manage society into prosperity. We aren't cogs in some machine to be pieced together into a perfect society, we are individual people with our own lives.

To answer your last statement first, social sciences give us the potential of knowledge, that's all. As such, said knowledge can either be used or abused by either private or public sources.

 

My best example comes from my particular field of Anthropology. In the late 40's, cooperative dike construction for growing rice in Vietnam was studied and described in a monograph that became a classic. Far too much so, as the US Army got a copy and began to develop the terror tactics of dike bombing to destroy the agricultural base of 'the enemy'. 

 

As for Austrian School & 'methodological individualism:

a) real actors are neither motivated by nor act in terms of 'rational expectations. 

B) market information is not 'symmetric'.

c) sellers do not 'compete'

d) prices are not 'predictable' over time in terms of Gaussian log-normality.

e) prices over time are not 'algorithmic'.

 

For Austrian School theory to hold, all six concepts under quotes must hold as true. 

yet none are: 

 

a) heuristic behavior governs economic transactions. 

B) markets, according to stiglitz, are informationally skewed towards the seller.

c) In order for markets to survive the von Neuman scenario  of ultimate collapse, the Nash principle of shared negotiation must intervene.

d)prices follow Cauchy at best, Levi at worse. there is no bell-curve of 'averages'.

e) Prices cannot be predicted by anything more informative than Euler, or the 'drunkard's walk'

 

'Small wonder, then, that the Austrians reject math!

 

So now back to your point of knowledge and power: What we now can understand of individual-driven' 'free markets is that they're  guaranteed to spin out of control. So if it's worth it, anyway, for the sake of a particular philosophy that values individual freedom to this extent, then fine, that's a choice. 

 

Mine is to have markets under strict supervision. Barring this, the future would indicate a return to the abolition of markets altogether, in favor of state command entities. For example, this is exactly what's happening in Russia today, vis a vis their own disastrous experience with 'free enterprise'.

 

BH

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So, your polemic strategy is to bury the opposition in a huge list of assertions that are just obviously right because a professor says so?

No, my request is that the Austrians should come up with some quantifiably testable hypotheses on their. own.

 

Otherwise, their case is about as strong a girl wandering into a sports bar with a mini skit, no panties and a tee shirt that say's 'rape me'..yet files a complaint that she was...raped.

 

BH

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No, my request is that the Austrians should come up with some quantifiably testable hypotheses on their. own.

 

Otherwise, their case is about as strong a girl wandering into a sports bar with a mini skit, no panties and a tee shirt that say's 'rape me'..yet files a complaint that she was...raped.

 

BH

From your posts, you seem to confuse Austrians and Chicago-school and Rational-expectations.

You can wish anything you want. That does not mean you'll get your rationalistic wish. There are some people who think that we should use symbolic logic as part of philosophy. What of it?

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Why the undefined continuing claim? Because the evil louse wants unearned benefits.

This is the hypothesized motive that I was hoping to challenge in this thread.

 

While we can clearly see that the statists are attempting to take what they haven't earned, I would question whether their motivation is even comparable to desire, on a fundamental level.

I wholeheartedly agree with your entire post, by the way; I point this out because you're the first person to mention it explicitly.

 

So you can relax: there's no need to get abusive or to question Obama's motives, or to make elaborated inferences as to what he 'really' meant. . . 

name-calling. . . is counterproductive.

Do you suppose that Billy made these comments out of any sort of desire for anything?

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BH

 

So now you have gone from arguing one point to an entirely unrelated point. 

 

You were just listing opinions that you agree with and changing the subject to the economic viability of capitalism. Start a new thread about Austrian economics and stick to it if you want to do that, I am not going to be baited into enduring an endless chain of your pretentious rants. 

Edited by Hairnet

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Obama's point is that the market value for labor has failed to adequately compensate millions of hard-working Americans.

Value- as decided by whom and for what?

 

So i would say that the metaphysics of Obama are rather transparent: he has none. Redistribution isn't an end in itself that requires any sort of philosophical justification.. Rather, to him at least, it's just what needs to get done.

And this doesn't strike you as one of the most alarming facts of the entire spectacle?

And it's okay to analyze his motives, as long as you're merciful about it?  Would you call that a halfway accurate interpretation?

 

But this is only a rule which is set within the context of it being beneficial for the general welfare. So when it isn't the rules get changed, or tweaked a bit. 

Because it is.  It has always been, it always will be; it is beyond dispute.  Yes?

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What we now can understand of individual-driven' 'free markets is that they're  guaranteed to spin out of control.

Of course.  It's self evident, you delightfully fascinating invertebrate!  :thumbsup:

 

No, my request is that the Austrians should come up with some quantifiably testable hypotheses on their. own.

Because their theories aren't. . . Dare I say. . . 

Perceptual?

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...I would question whether their motivation is even comparable to desire, on a fundamental level....

Do you suppose that Billy made these comments out of any sort of desire for anything?

B's purpose in deflecting criticism seems to be more evasion than advocacy. It is similar to other arguments I have heard. A statist asked me, "Why do Republicans hate Obama so much?" If there is rampant hate out there for Mr. O. I haven't seen it. It seems rather a device for nullifying all opposition. If you oppose my guy, then you are motivated by hate. It follows that any argument you make is based on hate and therefore invalid.

"Hate" may be substituted by "evil" more generally. Identification of a group as evil clearly dilineates "us" vs "them". That's okay as long as the marker is objectively valid. Too often, it is a mere smokescreen. G. W. Bush was the best Democrat in the 20 years before him. That didn't keep Democrats from hating him. He was a better statist than Clinton, and yet left and right acted like lemmings, following their guy into the abyss.

BH has been guilty above of drive-by philosophy, making only superficial points with no focus. This too is evasion. This is, in my experience of those having similar views, based on fear. They claim to fear anarchy, but that too is a smokescreen.

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Intentional actions are motivated.

 

Individual values motivate individually.

 

The universal rule of "no backsies"?  A refundee presumes a refunder, and whatever trade arrangement they establish at the point of sale determines how much will be traded back; no mercy, and no wishing for a greater or lesser refund.

 

Now in terms of Obama's argument, a successful trader doesn't trade exclusively with himself, therefore the effort of others does contribute to some degree to ones own success, but only in the implied social context of trading, i.e. one cannot become a successful trader without a marketplace populated with other traders.  The logical flaw remains that trading per se, doesn't imply success; one can certainly fail at trading too.

I agree , Obama's argument , the implications of the stance that 'you didn't build that' is that that stance 'blanks out' on how a division of labor society best fosters production in the aggregate, by recognizing individual rights as a foundation. I do not mean here to justify capitalism on utilitarian grounds, btw.

Edited by tadmjones

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I agree , Obama's argument , the implications of the stance that 'you didn't build that' is that that stance 'blanks out' on how a division of labor society best fosters production in the aggregate, by recognizing individual rights as a foundation. I do not mean here to justify capitalism on utilitarian grounds, btw.

 

In a nutshell, Obama seeks to apply the progressive tax code to those who achieve happiness as a result of having the security to pursue happiness.  Of course one can easily counter with, "Why should anyone pay more taxes for infrastructure that only produces a marginal number (1%) of wealthy, successful Americans?"

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BH has been guilty above of drive-by philosophy, making only superficial points with no focus. This too is evasion. This is, in my experience of those having similar views, based on fear.

Exactly!

"You didn't build that" is a rejection of volition.  The important thing to note about it is the part where he says 'there are lots of smart and hard-working people out there, who haven't been as lucky.'  Everything else in the speech is a rationalization to justify that one statement.  And that one statement means that human beings cannot control their own lives.

And that's a rationalization of something deeper- because if you cannot control your own life then how can you be held responsible for it?

 

His audience didn't applaud for the rejection of property rights.  They were applauding for the implicit assertion that it isn't their fault (whatever "it" happens to be) because they couldn't help it!

---

 

Now the fear of responsibility can stem from many different things.  But whatever its possible roots, that one sort of fear is the motivation behind every sort of collectivism ever concocted.

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Devil's Advocate:  the logical flaw in Obama's argument is similar to that, but not interchangeable.

The problem is that wealth does not stem from infrastructure or education at all, any more than it stems from the presence of Oxygen in Earth's atmosphere.  Not in any meaningfully causal way.

 

Wealth is a consequence of the human mind.

 

If you can stop to realize that then the next question, which is of vital importance, is why.

 

For what reason would so many people be so invested in not realizing the actual cause of prosperity?

---

 

If you reach the point where you understand this, and begin to ask yourself that question, please refer to the post above.

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"The point is, is that when we succeed, we succeed because of our individual initiative, but also because we do things together." ~ President Obama

 

OK, so doing things together produces "wealthy, successful Americans" that account for 1% of all Americans...

 

... yeah, I think I'll continue to rely on "individual initiative".

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Now, having identified the motive behind "you didn't build that" as the fear of responsibility, and having generalized across every instance of statism, we find ourselves in the unique position of being able to immediately verify this theory.

 

Billy is your average anticonceptual mentality.  He treats concepts (all concepts) as if they were percepts.  Not all collectivists are anticonceptual, nor vice-versa, but I have noticed a strong correlation.

Exhibit A:

So we can conclude that both Galt and Marx are in error: the truth lies somewhere in the middle, and that the real grounds for discourse is to find a fair metric.

Notice that 'both Galt and Marx are wrong' leads him to 'a fair metric'.  The subject has nothing to do with principles, to him.

 

There is no morality of redistribution as such.

Meaning that redistribution is inevitable and involuntary.

Now, at this point, you may find yourself baffled at how he can consider it involuntary.  But he's already told us the answer, here:

What all societies have always done is to devise rules of social and economic interaction. One of ours is that of permitting labor to find market value. . .  But this is only a rule which is set within the context of it being beneficial for the general welfare. So when it isn't the rules get changed, or tweaked a bit. In brief, there never has been or will be a society in which property rights are not imbedded within usufruct rights so granted.

The statement, that there has never been a fully free society, is of course completely true.  You know it's true.  I know it's true.  But we can imagine things which have never happened before while he cannot, because we have conceptualized it.

He is not capable of distinguishing between the actual, the possible and the impossible.

 

So where is this fear of responsibility, if he cannot feel responsible for the evils he advocates? . . .

Lastly, cutting and pasting on a psychologism such as 'guilt' only regresses the dialogue because one's opponents will simply retort with 'greed'.

Whoever asks you to suspend your own judgment, either of identification or (in this case) evaluation, has already done so themselves.

---

 

Bill Harris is afraid of the responsibility of forming his own evaluations.

Edited by Harrison Danneskjold

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Now, having identified the motive behind "you didn't build that" as the fear of responsibility, and having generalized across every instance of statism, we find ourselves in the unique position of being able to immediately verify this theory.

 

Billy is your average anticonceptual mentality.  He treats concepts (all concepts) as if they were percepts.  Not all collectivists are anticonceptual, nor vice-versa, but I have noticed a strong correlation.

Exhibit A:

Notice that 'both Galt and Marx are wrong' leads him to 'a fair metric'.  The subject has nothing to do with principles, to him.

 

Meaning that redistribution is inevitable and involuntary.

Now, at this point, you may find yourself baffled at how he can consider it involuntary.  But he's already told us the answer, here:

The statement, that there has never been a fully free society, is of course completely true.  You know it's true.  I know it's true.  But we can imagine things which have never happened before while he cannot, because we have conceptualized it.

He is not capable of distinguishing between the actual, the possible and the impossible.

 

So where is this fear of responsibility, if he cannot feel responsible for the evils he advocates? . . .

Whoever asks you to suspend your own judgment, either of identification or (in this case) evaluation, has already done so themselves.

---

 

Bill Harris is afraid of the responsibility of forming his own evaluations.

My own evaluation is implicit in my text: orthodox Randism has offered no shred of real evidence as to why its ideals, so stated, have any realistic bearing on how people really live. 

 

'Concepts', as used, is just a fancy word for what the mind devises on its own, with or without a grounding in lived reality. The Greeks called this 'noite' , and Hume, 'the imagination', as did Kant.

 

This is not to say that the pursuit of concepts is wrong. Rather, only a sophomoric enterprise when said coneptualizing replaces the awareness of real life. 

 

What one should never be afraid of is to inquire of others' 'concepts', can you offer me a concrete example of what you're talking about?"

 

For example, if you believe in 'free markets', are you afraid when I challenge you to provide me evidence that markets actually work the way that you claim that they do? Or, being afraid that they don't--because all empirical evidence demonstrates contrary-- do you hide in fear behind the principle of individualism, thereby kicking the rhetorical can away from economics as such?

 

Or, out of fear, do you resort to childish name calling?

 

BH

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 orthodox Randism has offered no shred of real evidence as to why its ideals, so stated, have any realistic bearing on how people really live. 

You're actually right about this.

And the reason you're correct is because Objectivism has no bearing on how you live your life.  It can't even be communicated by your method of thinking.

 

'Concepts', as used, is just a fancy word for what the mind devises on its own, with or without a grounding in lived reality. The Greeks called this 'noite' , and Hume, 'the imagination', as did Kant.

This is not to say that the pursuit of concepts is wrong. Rather, only a sophomoric enterprise when said coneptualizing replaces the awareness of real life.

You're attempting to accuse me of rationalism here, only you're doing it wrong.  The irony is that by categorizing 'conceptualizing' as rationalism (or 'sophomoric') you're once again confessing to being totally alien to the process.

 

Or, out of fear, do you resort to childish name calling?

Fear of what?

 

As for Austrian School & 'methodological individualism:

a) real actors are neither motivated by nor act in terms of 'rational expectations. 

B) market information is not 'symmetric'.

c) sellers do not 'compete'

Which means that in order for Capitalism to be good people cannot act purposefully, different people must know different things and businesses cannot compete. . . In reality.

 

For Austrian School theory to hold, all six concepts under quotes must hold as true. 

yet none are: 

 

a) heuristic behavior governs economic transactions.

Meaning that although an economy is caused by the actions of many different individuals, aggregated rational action cannot predict what economies do; it's simply random.

---

 

Are you asking whether I'm afraid of that logic?

Edited by Harrison Danneskjold

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I have to strain myself to find what remains of the topic in some of the last few posts, so I've hidden them. Y'all can try again with less flaming.

Edited by FeatherFall

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1You're actually right about this.

And the reason you're correct is because Objectivism has no bearing on how you live your life.  It can't even be communicated by your method of thinking.

 

2You're attempting to accuse me of rationalism here, only you're doing it wrong.  The irony is that by categorizing 'conceptualizing' as rationalism (or 'sophomoric') you're once again confessing to being totally alien to the process.

 

Fear of what?

 

3Which means that in order for Capitalism to be good people cannot act purposefully, different people must know different things and businesses cannot compete. . . In reality.

 

4Meaning that although an economy is caused by the actions of many different individuals, aggregated rational action cannot predict what economies do; it's simply random.

---

 

5Are you asking whether I'm afraid of that logic?

Harrison,

 

Permit me to respond by paragraph, 1 to 5:

 

1& 2-- My belief is that philosophy is important in developing ideals and values for life.  That said, there are three possibilities for any individual to take. 1) ideals direct my life 2) ideals influence my life as a first step 3) ideals are nonsense.

 

As an analogy, pretend you're trying to get to the Bahamas in a sailboat from Miami, whcu is 90d directly due east. You set your compass accordingly. Well, good luck if you don't adjust for wind and current!

 

My point is that both a non-directedness and a refusal to interface with empirical reality will get you to Cuba. 

 

Or try swimming: how helpful is a diagram? Better with than without, but having learned it alone will not keep you afloat...

 

For you, with all due respect as an enormously erudite individual, Objectivism over-directs. You really do seem to want to 'live' by ideals and values; I simply contend that this is impossible. 

 

3,4&5-- Rand's justification for capitalism is that it's about moral agents acting out of rational self-interest. The math of their interaction seems to indicate that 'the road to hell is paved with good intentions'. So yes, you're at a point where you have to choose: intent versus outcome.

 

Here, I'll add a point that 'ethics' in a large sense is not so much 'doing good' as to what part of 'goodness' includes choosing by good intent, while knowing all along that the outcome of this choice will be bad.  

 

Because this scenario is absurd (as Rand must have realized), she was obliged to find an economic theory which would demonstrate that the outcome wasn't bad after all.. In other words, at some point, markets will have to be shown to produce something more than bad outcomes.

 

Surprisingly, she rejects both Chicago and Hayek. The former is based upon strategic 'rational expectations', which was not proven false during her life. The later wrote that markets produce participatory democracy, regardless of its chaotic nature; so just put some controls on the system & you'll be okay. 

 

Finally she settles in on Mises, who talked of 'choice' as if the actors were rational actors.

 

My name-laden expostulation tries to show you that in no ense can it be said that markets produce rational outcomes. By choosing unfettered markets in the name of personal freedom, you're choosing chaos.

 

So yes, be very afraid.

 

--Bill

Edited by bill harris

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