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*** Mod's note: Split from another thread, since this belonged in a different topic. - sN ***

Randian Government.

I just wanted to apologize to Trebor for the ten gallon hat scenario. I thought of describing a woman in the theatre wearing one of those big boat Sunday Church hats but the cowboy hat seemed funnier. Let me try another devil’s advocate gambit. Once again I am not trying to disparage the great state of Texas. Remember the Alamo!

A strictly interpreted, Constitutional Government, or a hypothetical Objectivist Government has a monopoly over the retaliatory use of force *conferred upon it by the consent of the governed.* It permits various jurisdictional agencies within its territory, as long as those agencies uphold the Constitution guaranteeing individual rights. It does not permit agencies within its territory that are at variance with any provisions of the Constitution.

Is there competition between the states? For instance, State Judge Trebor Wopner or State Judge “RationalBiker” Napolitano, interpreting State Government or the Constitution on TV are upholding the highest laws of the land, though Judge Wopner usually deals with miniscule or microcosmic sections of his state’s laws. He has his jurisdiction, and the Federal and State Courts have theirs.

However, what if Judge Trebor Wopner said this?

“I am taking my court outside the legal and moral authority of the Constitution. I hereby declare this section of the country, the great state of Texas, as Wopner’s Confederate States of America. We uphold much of the Constitution of the United States, except we deem it right that landowners can keep other human beings as property, especially undocumented Mexicans. And we think coercive taxation is immoral. Nobody is required to pay taxes. We will pump oil out of State lands to pay my salary.”

This is the point where the idea of “competing legal agencies” fails. If a Government, legally constituted on individual rights, within a geographical area, for all time, sees the establishment of a “competing set of rules,” that infringe upon rights, then it has an obligation to protect its citizens within that area.

And furthermore, if any individual, or group simply declares, they are no longer bound by the laws of the constitution in some subsection of the larger area, even if this group declares it DUPLICATES the laws of the original government, it is an infringement upon the rights of all the citizens and the Government should use “retaliatory force,” to dissuade the secessionists.

This is true because the *final authority* to OVERSEE the making of laws must be in the hands of the Federal Government. If allowed continued existence, the competing governments may then create laws that are contrary to the constitution of the land. So, it is a principle of self defense to squelch the law writers who could become lawbreakers.

I think our own history parallels this course. What if the South had won the war? That is always an interesting game of, “what if.” I am talking about the concept of *States Rights* which might be better stated as states delegated duties and authority.

Let’s switch gears back to Objectivism from the Confederacy. I want to make a distinction between anarchy, which is an interim period, as in America’s old west, and Randian Government which posits, a just society with very, very little government, but is still based on individual rights and the non-initiation of force principle, as is our current Constitutional Government. It’s just that everyone is packing a pistol so to speak to enforce their own rights. Would that be so bad, Vern, from the perspective of law enforcement?

How would a Randian Government fare in the world? An interim anarchy like in our old west (and still might lie in the badlands of Texas : o ) can exist as it does in Somalia, but for how long? Culture is the glue that holds the war-lords together in a loose confederation. Now, if Randian Government is a workable and logically superior system, why does it not spontaneously spring into being in Somalia? When the Soviet Union collapsed why didn’t Randian Government spring into being there?

The answer as to why is so simple even a caveman could think it: people live there and people know people. The Randian Laissez Faire, Little or Non-State, can only exist on paper or in someone’s imagination. It is a REIFIED feeling of personal sovereignty. If I am wrong, show me the beef.

One hypothetical: Randian Government vs. our current Constitutional Government. How do we fix it?

Two hypothetical: Randian Government vs. Planned Rational Anarchy. Is Randian Government so close to NO government that it modals anarchy?

Warning! This is just a drill. This is not an attack. This is just a thought game drill.

Semper cogitans fidele,

Peter Taylor

Edited by softwareNerd
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A strictly interpreted, Constitutional Government, or a hypothetical Objectivist Government has a monopoly over the retaliatory use of force *conferred upon it by the consent of the governed.*
This does not describe Objectivist Government. it sounds more like the theory of social contract, which is at odds with Objectivism. Objectivism's political theory is most adamantly not a theory of social-contract.

As for "competing legal agencies", I'm not quite sure what you mean, but I've never seen any positive mentions of that in Objectvist literature. I know that Rothbardians and other libertarians use that term/concept, but -- as usually understood -- this is not consistent with Objectivism.

So, any critique of Objectivism that starts with the assumption that Objectivism is a theory of social contract or "societal self-determination" and that it encourages or even allows competing legal agencies, is basically using a strawman as a starting point.

I'm not sure what point you're trying to make about the South and states rights. States ought not to have any rights. At best, to say that states have rights is to use the same to label a completely different concept.

Again, not sure about your notion of "little government" and people packing guns to defend themselves. Is this your description of Objectivism or of it's opposite (because Objectivism most adamantly does not use "minimal government" as the basis for its political theory).

I don't understand your theory that if a political system were clearly superior to the one in Somalia then it would spontaneously spring into being in Somalia. The logical conclusion is that the political system in Somalia is pretty much as good as any in the world. is this really your assertion?

At the end of all these strawmen, you conclude by asserting that Objectivist government cannot exist in reality.

Edited by softwareNerd
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I have always thought of Objectivist Government as a theory of social-contract. If you are born here and did not participate in the Founding of our country how did you give your consent? It could be argued that by staying here you are figuratively signing a constract and giving your consent, which leads to a charge of jingoism: "Love it or leave it." I have a decent proof of *consent* which I may print at a later time but what do others think of the notion of implied consent, rather than an anarchic *constant consent*?

Again, I am co-mingling Objectivist Government and The United States Constitution as an existing example of flawed Objectivist Government since Ayn Rand decided to live here, campaign here, and spoke highly of her adopted country and its Constitution.

Competing Governments in the Rothbardian sense was what I was parodying while at the same time showing that there is divergence in State Governments as long as they abide by the Federal Constitution.

Would the services that State, County and City governments provide whither away if the Constitution were streamlined in a Randian fashion? I tend to think that states will vary in laws and that people will mostly migrate within the United States to the freer states with the best weather and lesser population, though a few will migrate to the states with the best welfare system. As we see in those Welfare States, the gravy train is not sustainable.

Gotta go. I have been turning over the soil in my new garden the first time this year and it is harder than I remembered.

Semper cogitans fidele,

Peter Taylor

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How would a Randian Government fare in the world? An interim anarchy like in our old west (and still might lie in the badlands of Texas : o ) can exist as it does in Somalia, but for how long? Culture is the glue that holds the war-lords together in a loose confederation. Now, if Randian Government is a workable and logically superior system, why does it not spontaneously spring into being in Somalia? When the Soviet Union collapsed why didn’t Randian Government spring into being there?

For the same reasons humans did not spontaneously invent the Industrial Revolution thousands of years ago: the fundamentals that make that possible were not in place.

The question assumes that the present status quo is always the optimal and ultimate form. How silly.

One hypothetical: Randian Government vs. our current Constitutional Government. How do we fix it?

Two hypothetical: Randian Government vs. Planned Rational Anarchy. Is Randian Government so close to NO government that it modals anarchy?

You are not familiar enough with Objectivist political theory to ask good questions. You can't learn Rand's thought just from her novels.

There is no such term as Randian government. Use Capitalism instead.

No, Capitalism is not anarchy. Capitalism is all about respecting and defending rights and it should as strong and as activist as necessary to accomplish that end.

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Well that is a mistake (and one which seems destined to come up again and again and again...). Under Objectivism government is not a contract. Not implicitly and not explicitly either.

Government must by its nature be able to wield its power without the consent of the person it is wielding power against. (If it had the consent it wouldn't need that power, would it?) And that person may never have consented. And being born here and not leaving is hardly consent; even if one is able to leave there may be no better place to go to. And that fact shouldn't be taken as consent. ("Oh you don't suck as much as the other governments so I consent."?) The reason jingoism like you complained about is a _hazard_ of taking this position is because it is in fact a logical consequence of this position.

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I have always thought of Objectivist Government as a theory of social-contract.
Objectivism does not subscribe to the theory of social contract. In its essence, the theory of social contract gives democracy (agreement, consent, approval, votes) primacy over rights. Objectivist political theory rejects this. Instead Objectivist political theory says that a government ought to protect individual rights as its primary function, even if everyone thinks this is baloney and decides to vote in the commies or the Islamists.

If you are born here and did not participate in the Founding of our country how did you give your consent?
That is a question ask of the theorists who propound "social contract", not of Objectivism, since Objectivism rejects the theory. In fact, only the guys who actually signed the U.S. constitution (and perhaps those who viewed them as their agents) could be viewed as consenting. There were many who disagreed. Heck there were many who wanted the British to keep ruling. How could they be said to have consented? That would be the pseudo-consent of the vanquished. If one claims that they have consented by implicitly agreeing to go along with the majority vote, then we should simply call it democracy. We should not give democracy more legitimacy than it deserves, trying to make it appear that there is some social contract that is broader than majority rule. We must distinguish "social contract" and "majority rule", else the former loses meaning. In any case, Objectivism rejects both, and therefore these criticisms are something of a sideline. (BTW, even the Declaration of Independence implies that a people do not have an absolute right of self-determination. So, at least in this regard the Declaration of Independence agrees with Objectivism in rejecting both Democracy and social-contract theory.)

Again, I am co-mingling Objectivist Government and The United States Constitution as an existing example of flawed Objectivist Government since Ayn Rand decided to live here, campaign here, and spoke highly of her adopted country and its Constitution.
There are many things to like in the Constitution, but it is most definitely not an Objectivist constitution. This is not to denigrate the founders. Hindsight is 20/20 and I say hats off to them for what they did, and a curse on the houses of subsequent generations for not knowing how to keep to the essential idea of the Declaration of Independence. Allowing slavery is an obvious way in which the constitution was flawed, and that was something that did not need hindsight; many founders knew it. For that reason, I think we should consider it an anomaly of the age. The other major weakness of the constitution is the ways in which it was (or could be read as) an agreement between states and a protector of states-rights (an anti-Objectivist concept) rather than individual rights.

If one removes these two major flaws, the U.S. constitution does uphold rights in a way that was radically good for its time. Imagine that the founders had foreseen (say) the 10 future SCOTUS rulings that would weaken individual rights, and had beefed up the language of the constitution to deal with those. With such changes, and the other two major things straightened out, we'd have an excellent constitution, even if it was not the perfectly Objectivist one.

Despite the weaknesses that we see with hindsight, and despite all the legitimate reasons to complain about the state of individual-rights in this country, one thing is clear: the U.S. constitution has been more of a success than a failure. If we're fair, we should consider where the U.S. would be if it had adopted (say) a French style constitution or a Russian-revolution constitution instead. The U.S. Constitution is like a tired old man who was strong and achieved great things, but time and future generations batter at him and yet he stands and fights even with the few muscles still left to him. I don't rate it a failure. One cannot any constitution to endure when the accepted political theory shifts radically. Asking a constitution to do this is asking it to do the impossible. It is not a weakness of the U.S. Constitution that protection of rights were chipped away in the face of political theory that pretty much accepted socialism and democratic rule as fundamentally good. Rather, it shows the strength of the constitution that it did not completely collapse and give way, the way some other constitutions did.

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I wrote:

A strictly interpreted, Constitutional Government, or a hypothetical Objectivist Government has a monopoly over the retaliatory use of force *conferred upon it by the consent of the governed.*

Softwarenerd replied:

This does not describe Objectivist Government. it sounds more like the theory of social contract, which is at odds with Objectivism. Objectivism's political theory is most adamantly not a theory of social-contract.

As I have mentioned before, I think of it that way. I live within the auspices of an implied contract. I have been called upon twice in my life to swear to uphold the Constitution. I did, and I meant it. For what does *freedom* mean if it is NOT our feeling of personal sovereignty within a system of government that protects our individual rights?

If there were no implied consent, Americans in general would not be truly free, which is important for our exceptional-ism and longevity as a country. Get back that immigrant’s glow: I WAS BORN FREE. I FEEL FREE. We would not be so patriotic if we did not feel free. We would not voluntarily pay our taxes, which we do pay more readily than any other Western Country. We would not be the envy of the “Unfree” world.

And surprising envy and emulation is emanating from the older European democracies. I heard today on Rush that there is a strong movement in Europe to cut back on their “third rail,” so I see light at the end of the world wide socialist tunnel

As Ayn Rand said at the end of her speech at West Point:

God bless America!

Semper cogitans fidele,

Peter Taylor

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Steve D'Ippolito wrote:

Government must by its nature be able to wield its power without the consent of the person it is wielding power against. (If it had the consent it wouldn't need that power, would it?) And that person may never have consented. And being born here and not leaving is hardly consent;

I am not sure how to answer you. Yet, let me address the following explanation, not just to you Steve, but to anyone who reads this letter. My point of view is that while I may be discussing this as an Objectivist (I did not name the thread) I am not necessarily discussing Theoretical Objectivist Government except as it applies to a discussion about our current Constitutional Government.

In other words, what does an Objectivist think about this or that, medicine or cosmology or Sarah Palin, and not about Objectivism per se. I certainly value your Randian Scholarship but if I am discussing *consent theory* I want to know what a rational, objective person thinks. Of course I may not know what Rand said so that too is welcome.

That being said, Steve’s following point was brilliant:

(If it had the consent it wouldn't need that power, would it?)

Did all the immigrating occupants of Ayn Rand’s “Atlantis” consent to be there? Yup. Did any children born there give their consent? Nope. But until they reach a “majority age” their right of consent is granted by their guardians, who are their parents. After that what would be moral?

George H. Smith author of the tongue in cheek title, “Atheism, Ayn Rand and other Heresies,” wrote:

Ayn Rand defends a consent doctrine in several of her essays, but she never explains how this consent should manifest itself - whether, for example, it must be explicit or merely tacit (as Locke believed). Nor does she explain precisely which rights are delegated to government and how they are transferred. Therefore, although Rand appears to fall within the social contract tradition (at least in a general way), it is unclear where she would stand on the nature and method of political consent. I sincerely hope that some of her minarchist followers can shed some light on this problem.”

And he continued with:

“I agree with these critics. If we accept the premise that individuals (and only individuals) possess equal and reciprocal rights, and if we insist that these individuals must consent to be ruled by a government, and if we condemn as illegitimate all governments that rule without consent - then all governments, past and present, have been illegitimate.

And that is where I vehemently disagree with Mr Smith and agree with Steve D’Ippolito and other Objectivists.

And I will go further than Rand. I think we DO give our consent, though it is not a *constant consent* as when, in Steve’s example, we are stopped from doing something the government deems illegal but we think is legal. My own thinking about The Legitimate Sovereignty of The United States of America.

I am having fun paralleling a certain philosophy but there is a serious point involved.

Welcome to Ellis Island! Here is some background on your new home. First we must look to the beginning. The Declaration of Independence, and The Preamble could have contained a logical, justification for the rights of men and women, of all colors and historically I wish it did. But instead, the status of both documents was trumpeted as axiomatic.

The Declaration of Independence Axiom:

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

End of Axiom

The Preamble to the Constitution Axiom:

We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

End of Axiom

Therefore, I can rationally carry on that tradition by stating my United States of America Axiom (which I won’t bracket since I wrote it):

The United States of America already exists. It is a fact. All those who might have originally consented or declined to be part of The United States of America are dead. Ever since freedom from England was confirmed, we must now start at the mid-point of a legitimate, working, “State.” A “State,” like an axiom, is not so easily discarded.

End of Axiom

Article One: America exists, covering a certain geographical location. The right of consent to be governed is automatically given by anyone who continues to live here.

Article Two: America may at some point, disband as did older Empires or more recently The Soviet Union. Occasionally, a new state may be created, with the consent of the governed, extending the geographical boundaries of America. A territory may decline the invitation, as has Puerto Rico.

Article Three: An individual, within the geographical boundaries of The United States of America MAY NOT secede from The Union. While you live here, you give your consent to be governed and you will abide by the laws of the land. Forever.

Welcome to America!

Semper cogitans fidele,

Peter Taylor

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I'm truly lost as to the point of this thread. Rand did not uphold a consent doctrine (I don't know anything about George Smith, but he is wrong if he thinks she did); but is that the question in this thread or a sideline? Could you restate your main premise very briefly?

Edited by softwareNerd
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Nope. You still don't understand.

Consent has nothing to do with it at all. Neither implicitly or explicitly. This is inherent to the nature of government.

If you are very very fortunate you live in a place that has a government whose role is properly restricted, or almost so. Ours is increasingly out of line, but it is still a government, and as a government it has the following characteristic: Your consent is neither sought, required, or quite frankly, given a good goddamn about. You are allowed in many parts of the world to vote but not to reject the result of the vote, whether you chose to vote or not--the vote is not implied consent, and not voting is not regarded as an act of withholding consent, it has nothing to do with consent, much as many politicians will try to fuzz that distinction.

Allow me to mark up your articles to express how a government (either a proper one by Objectivist standards, or an improper one) truly functions, as part of the nature of government qua government.

' timestamp='1303756955' post='274546']

Article One: America exists, covering a certain geographical location. If you are in that area, you are governed by the United States and the relevant state and local governments, whether or not you consent to this.

Article Two: America may at some point, disband as did older Empires or more recently The Soviet Union. Occasionally, a new state may be created, with the consent of the governed, extending the geographical boundaries of America. A territory may decline the invitation, as has Puerto Rico.

Article Three: An individual, within the geographical boundaries of The United States of America MAY NOT secede from The Union. (This would imply that your consent is necessary.) While you live here, you are governed by US (and state and local) law, and your consent is not necessary for this.

Hopefully someday, we will see a government with Article 4:

Article Four: The purpose of this government is to protect the rights of individuals living within its boundaries, and the following procedures are provided to redress situations where the government exceeds that mission. [....]

... but such does not exist, and may not ever exist. Note that even if it did, there'd be no implication of "consent".

Government is force, applied without consent. With luck we will someday have government that doesn't habitually initiate that force.

Edit: realized it could stand some clarification.

Edited by Steve D'Ippolito
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I'm truly lost as to the point of this thread. Rand did not uphold a consent doctrine (I don't know anything about George Smith, but he is wrong if he thinks she did); but is that the question in this thread or a sideline? Could you restate your main premise very briefly?

In other threads (see Is Taxation Moral post #159) I have documented several instances were she used a version of a consent doctrine. George Smith is not wrong on that point.

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In other threads (see Is Taxation Moral post #159) I have documented several instances were she used a version of a consent doctrine. George Smith is not wrong on that point.
The question is what has epistemological primacy: consent or individual rights. (And moral primacy). Edited by softwareNerd
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The question is what has epistemological primacy: consent or individual rights. (And moral primacy).

Good question, and not easy to answer. Individual rights are the sanction to act on one's own volition free of the coercion caused by the initiation of force, but the initiation of force is essentially the lack of consent. The order of lower level to higher level concepts is: volition, force, consent, rights.

I anticipate you will want to make a case that consent comes after rights, but I don't see how this can be done. I claim that because the concept of a contract definitely comes after rights, it is better to make a government in the form of a contract in order to justify in epistemology how rights restrict the form of a valid government.

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You're right that the concept of rights depends upon the concept of consent. However, Robinson Crusoe has no need for the concepts of consent, disagreement and force. Consent and disagreement come into play when one has two or more people, and if they disagree as well as consent. As a concept, consent is framed by a process of differentiating it from "non-consent" (let's call it "disagreement"). Therefore, if we're looking at things from a general epistemological viewpoint (i.e. not asking about the justification of political argument), we could also say that the concept of rights depends on the concept of disagreement.

Rights are a way of resolving the problem of a lack of consent. So, while one might say that the initiation of force is the lack of consent, this is only true if we use "initiation of force" to be value neutral. When the cops use force to take a criminal to jail, they do it without his consent. One could thus argue that the defense of rights is essentially the lack of the violator's consent. In other words, when deciding whether something is moral and politically justifiable, we cannot drill all the way down to consent any more than we can drill down to disagreement. We do not say that disagreement is the basis of government, even though this is true in the broader epistemological sense. We resolve the problem of consent and disagreement by discovering the concept of rights. Then, all political questions are drilled down to that level. Rights is thus the starting point for the 'epistemology of politics".

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You're right that the concept of rights depends upon the concept of consent. However, Robinson Crusoe has no need for the concepts of consent, disagreement and force. Consent and disagreement come into play when one has two or more people, and if they disagree as well as consent. As a concept, consent is framed by a process of differentiating it from "non-consent" (let's call it "disagreement"). Therefore, if we're looking at things from a general epistemological viewpoint (i.e. not asking about the justification of political argument), we could also say that the concept of rights depends on the concept of disagreement.

Disagreement is not good enough because it is not physical force in either a direct or indirect form. Only the initiation of force can negate volition.

Rights are a way of resolving the problem of a lack of consent. So, while one might say that the initiation of force is the lack of consent, this is only true if we use "initiation of force" to be value neutral. When the cops use force to take a criminal to jail, they do it without his consent.

You cannot designate a person as a criminal without implicitly identifying him as the one who initiated force and the cops as retaliating. In initiating force he no longer is entitled to have his rights respected and his consent is irrelevant. There is no such thing as a value neutral sense of an "initiation of force" because "initiation" specifies enough context to immediately make a value judgement.

One could thus argue that the defense of rights is essentially the lack of the violator's consent.

"Violator's consent" is a self-contradictory term that invalidates every thought that employs it.

Rights is thus the starting point for the 'epistemology of politics".

I call this compartmentalizing thought which causes a failure to integrate consistently all the hierarchically prior knowledge.

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Steve wrote:

Hopefully someday, we will see a government with Article 4:

Article Four: The purpose of this government is to protect the rights of individuals living within its boundaries, and the following procedures are provided to redress situations where the government exceeds that mission. [....]

You guys are impressing me. Excellent posts.

Grames quoted From "Representation Without Authorization"

Ayn Rand said:

. . . . Thus the government of a free country derives its "just powers from the consent of the governed . . . . As a corroboration of the link between man's rational faculty and a representative form of government, observe that those who are demonstrably (or physiologically) incapable of rational judgment cannot exercise the right to vote.

Thank you Grames. I would maintain that in America consent is given. Self-sovereignty is maintained. Our *Basic* rights defending Government does not make me do things against my will. When we do think government is overstepping its bounds we need a better system to redress these wrongs. The proposed Repeal Amendment is one such device.

2012. I saw today that Trump is questioning Obama’s credentials to be President because his grades were poor, and not good enough to be admitted to Harvard.

I have dismissed Trump as a serious candidate but I hope he stays in the race. If it did come down to Obama or Trump I MIGHT vote for Trump. I would never vote for Obama. Years ago when I listened to Trump’s short two-minute spots on talk radio he sometimes sounded like a full blown Statist.

I went to his site and left a message (it was very slow printing what I typed.) I said, You are saying what many of us are thinking. Find out who vetted Obama for Senator and President. Meet with Tea Party Congressmen and discuss ways to initiate another HUAC, House Un-American Activities Committee.

Why go to such an extreme? When I went into the Army, my job description required a clearance. Federal agents vetted me with former neighbors. Since my father was a naval officer and I had lived in naval housing much of my life my clearance was approved quickly. Out of 90 GI’s in my “secure” class I and one other former armed forces dependent had ours approved the quickest.

Something is terribly wrong. The clown in office should not be there. He knows little. He was not properly vetted.

Peter Taylor

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softwareNerd asked:

Vetted? What are you talking about? Who's supposed to vet a candidate's qualifications?

For the lowest of military clearances this search criteria is From US military dot gov.

a. The nature, extent, and seriousness of the conduct;

b. The circumstances surrounding the conduct, to include knowledgeable participation;

c. The frequency and recency of the conduct;

d. The individual's age and maturity at the time of the conduct;

e. The voluntariness of participation;

f. The presence or absence of rehabilitation and other pertinent behavioral changes;

g. The motivation for the conduct;

h. The potential for pressure, coercion, exploitation, or duress; and

i. The likelihood of continuation or recurrence.

The example of “h.” above kept *known* gay people from getting a “secret” clearance before the policy of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” because of the risk of blackmail.

When you go a bit higher on the “eyes only” bracket more is involved.

From Ehow:

In general, to obtain a security clearance from the U.S. government, you need to be a loyal U.S. citizen who has lived a relatively clean life. At any given time in the U.S., there are roughly 3 million people with security clearance. The greatest number of these people can be found in the U.S. military.

A security check involves investigation of your life, including federal records, criminal checks and credit checks. Higher level checks will also involve field interviews not only with you, but with people who know you. Investigators will be looking into your character, criminal history, emotional stability, trustworthiness, loyalty and reliability to see if you should be allowed to access confidential information, most notably national security information. So you don't want to have committed serious crimes, be deep in debt or associate with groups that act against the government.

Now what sort of access would a Senator need.? Top Secret. I will not access that info online, or say what I know. It would set off alarms.

What sort of clearance would a President need? The highest there is.

With Obama’s associations, foreign socialist / communist father, radical socialist mother, and background he should not have been given a “secret clearance.” If he had enlisted in the military he would not have been given much, if any clearance for sensitive material. Melodramatic scenarios like, “Is he a Manchurian Candidate,” are a bit farfetched. Or are they? I see on the net he has supposedly released his birth certificate. What are the odds that it is a fake? The Donald will research that for us.

Something is terribly wrong.

Unless all government vetters who researched Obama are given a pass or pardon, I think there will be an inquiry around 2013 if a Republican is elected.

Semper cogitans fidele,

Formerly of Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, Seventh Infantry Division Artillery - Signal Corps.

Peter Taylor

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softwareNerd wrote:

So the thread on Objectivist Government is turning into a tin hat thread about Obama as a muslim Manchurian candidate?

I like asides. No one knows everything. And as Mark Twain warned, “Be careful about reading health books. You may die of a misprint.”

There is more that I would like to say, so thanks for the prod softwareNerd.

Does the history of Western Law apply to Objective Law? In “The Structure of Liberty” Lon Fuller mentions eight basic rules of law. I got these second hand, from an old letter from Ross Barnett on Atlantis, when Jimbo Wales owner of Wikipedia, was the moderator, so they are not quotes, but what Ross remembered. And there are some comments of his that I edited:

1. Having rules at all, rather than deciding issues of justice ad hoc (or, for the particular end or case at hand without consideration of wider application.)

2. Having clearly understood rules.

3. Having rules that do not change rapidly, so one can use them to make decisions.

4. Having non-contradictory rules, so it is possible to obey them (or the law of compossibility)

5. Having rules that do not require one to do things beyond one's power.

6. Having rules that are well publicized.

7. Having rules that are not retroactive.

8. Having rules where there is congruence between the rule as articulated and the rule as actually applied.

Note that rule #4 is the rule of law version of what, in rights theory, is the law of compossibility.

The result?

"The pluralism of Western law . . . has been, or once was, a source of freedom. A serf might run to the town court for protection against his master. A vassal might run to the king's court for protection against his lord. A cleric might run to the ecclesiastical court for protection against the king."

The rule of law developed as each of these legal systems, attempting to curry "customers" away from alternative legal systems that could be chosen, granted "benefits to their customers". Use our service, and you'll be sure of avoiding ex post laws. Come to us, and we make sure your legal duties are clearly communicated. Join us--publicize our rules and make them enduring.

Thus a polycentric legal system (market justice) was responsible, historically, for developing what is now known as the rule of law. Better, in a sense, to think of it as the unintended consequence of the rule of laws.

So I see no reason not to rethink these “common laws,” and add them if appropriate to a more ideal Objectivist or Tea Party Constitution, or much more likely, to State, County, or City laws. I think the wisdom gathered into common law should not be lost.

Two that have been mentioned are *Adverse Possession* and *Coming to the Nuisance.* These are used by a judge to show *precedent.* This use of precedents is known as stare decisis. We could not have civil proceedings or criminal trials now without precedent. There are thousands of real estate precedents.

Riparian or waterfront laws are abundant in every state. So once again the simple declaration that a person may do as they like on their property as long as they do not violate the rights of others is a gross oversimplification. No you can’t. And knowledgeable people are aware of this fact.

Semper cogitans fidele,

Peter Taylor

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Riparian or waterfront laws are abundant in every state. So once again the simple declaration that a person may do as they like on their property as long as they do not violate the rights of others is a gross oversimplification. No you can’t. And knowledgeable people are aware of this fact.

Peter Taylor has trouble accurately quoting or referring to what someone else has said. I said:

Property rights are the right to the use and disposal of some thing. And yes, you can rightfully do as you please on your property as long as you do not violate the rights of others by whatever it is you do.

[bold added]

Of course, rightfully and lawfully are not necessarily the same, though they should be.

Edited by Trebor
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