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  1. #1
    Member Penda's Avatar
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    Default Government Control vs. Community Standards

    Why is that if someone has attitudes against something, do they feel that the best solution is always for the state to step in? In the past, and still in many parts of the world, the solution was for the community to impose its own standards on something. Instead of a state inflicted punishment, such as a fine or prison sentence, the punishment would be exclusion or banishment from a given community. This worked much better, since people were motivated by a positive desire to be part of something rather than an aversion to fear. If the poor were needy, there was less need for the government to impose redistribution in smaller, tighter-knit communities. Here, at least in the more successful examples, people felt more of a personal responsibility to help the less fortunate, and doctors would not have avoided poorer households if a member of the community was suffering enough. It was only in the large urban areas where there was no sense of cohesion, such as London and New York City, that the most appalling suffering took root among the large underclass.

    In today's world, there is very little cohesion or sense of unity among anyone. People have a radically individual attitude and also a very material one where wealth and success are measured only in things. It is in this cultural climate that classical liberalism is the least successful, because those who do not prosper truly have nothing, since there is no such thing as spiritual wealth in today's world and there is a genuine lack of community. It almost seems that statists encourage this breakdown of values, and the state has grown in power in leaps and bounds all over the world. The state reduces crime either through mass imprisonment, as in America, or through "rehabilitation" so that the people are in line with the state's values. However, the widespread and growing alienation manifest themselves in the recent surge in anti-depressant prescriptions, and the increase in massacres that have nothing to do with poverty or broken homes, but with complete alienation from the world and misanthropy.
    There are miles to go before I sleep...

  2. #2
    Order Now! pure_mercury's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Penda View Post
    Why is that if someone has attitudes against something, do they feel that the best solution is always for the state to step in? In the past, and still in many parts of the world, the solution was for the community to impose its own standards on something. Instead of a state inflicted punishment, such as a fine or prison sentence, the punishment would be exclusion or banishment from a given community. This worked much better, since people were motivated by a positive desire to be part of something rather than an aversion to fear. If the poor were needy, there was less need for the government to impose redistribution in smaller, tighter-knit communities. Here, at least in the more successful examples, people felt more of a personal responsibility to help the less fortunate, and doctors would not have avoided poorer households if a member of the community was suffering enough. It was only in the large urban areas where there was no sense of cohesion, such as London and New York City, that the most appalling suffering took root among the large underclass.

    In today's world, there is very little cohesion or sense of unity among anyone. People have a radically individual attitude and also a very material one where wealth and success are measured only in things. It is in this cultural climate that classical liberalism is the least successful, because those who do not prosper truly have nothing, since there is no such thing as spiritual wealth in today's world and there is a genuine lack of community. It almost seems that statists encourage this breakdown of values, and the state has grown in power in leaps and bounds all over the world. The state reduces crime either through mass imprisonment, as in America, or through "rehabilitation" so that the people are in line with the state's values. However, the widespread and growing alienation manifest themselves in the recent surge in anti-depressant prescriptions, and the increase in massacres that have nothing to do with poverty or broken homes, but with complete alienation from the world and misanthropy.

    I pretty much disagree with everything here. I find much spiritual wealth in my society, and I feel that we have gotten too far away from classical liberalism and individuality here. Poorer Americans, especially poor minorities, are very religious and often find great strength in their church communities. Why would we need overarching cohesion or sense of unity if we can be free to find happiness and fulfillment on our own terms? Also, this "increase in massacres" you cite is an issue, but worse massacres have happened in East Asian nations (like South Korea and Japan) with much less emphasis on individualism. And, as we all know, the greatest massacres in history have come at the hands of totalitarian governments. I firmly believe that the state should only step in when and if people are clearly harmed in some tangible way (theft, murder, pollution/debasement of property, fraud, exploitation and abuse of children, etc.), Looking to the state to provide a national sense of unity and morality is a fool's errand, and it is the absolute worst trait of modern conservatism in the United States.
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  3. #3
    mountain surfing nomadic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Penda View Post
    Why is that if someone has attitudes against something, do they feel that the best solution is always for the state to step in? In the past, and still in many parts of the world, the solution was for the community to impose its own standards on something. Instead of a state inflicted punishment, such as a fine or prison sentence, the punishment would be exclusion or banishment from a given community.
    Because the state is a way for them to feel some sort of "power" over the general "community".

    There are these "communities" all over. Sometimes its neighborhood organizations, and they will talk to council men/women who depend on them for their re-elections.

    As far as "banishment" from your circle, i mean, something like stealing from your friends or cheating on someone can make you a social outcast from a large portion of your general acquaintences. But these communities usually have some sort of school ties, be it high school, or college. Or communities where a foreign language was their first language.

    As far as things like "gay marriage", there are communities supporting that. Its when these communities clash, is when the drama for your momma happens. Sometimes, clashing is the best way for long term solutions to develop. But if people clash with no grip on reality, there's little chance for productivity.

  4. #4
    Member Penda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pure_mercury View Post
    I pretty much disagree with everything here. I find much spiritual wealth in my society, and I feel that we have gotten too far away from classical liberalism and individuality here. Poorer Americans, especially poor minorities, are very religious and often find great strength in their church communities. Why would we need overarching cohesion or sense of unity if we can be free to find happiness and fulfillment on our own terms? Also, this "increase in massacres" you cite is an issue, but worse massacres have happened in East Asian nations (like South Korea and Japan) with much less emphasis on individualism. And, as we all know, the greatest massacres in history have come at the hands of totalitarian governments. I firmly believe that the state should only step in when and if people are clearly harmed in some tangible way (theft, murder, pollution/debasement of property, fraud, exploitation and abuse of children, etc.), Looking to the state to provide a national sense of unity and morality is a fool's errand, and it is the absolute worst trait of modern conservatism in the United States.
    I think you must have misunderstood me. I am strongly against the statist mentality, as well as neo-conservatism. I am only interested in making classical liberalism work, and I think it works much better when people individually decide to be more community-minded without government intervention. My complaint is that people turn to the government for answers rather than adopting a civic minded approach on their own. I don't think that a libertarian political system works in the absence of personal pro-social values, which is where we seem to be headed.
    There are miles to go before I sleep...

  5. #5
    Order Now! pure_mercury's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Penda View Post
    I think you must have misunderstood me. I am strongly against the statist mentality, as well as neo-conservatism. I am only interested in making classical liberalism work, and I think it works much better when people individually decide to be more community-minded without government intervention. My complaint is that people turn to the government for answers rather than adopting a civic minded approach on their own. I don't think that a libertarian political system works in the absence of personal pro-social values, which is where we seem to be headed.

    What are the social values you mean? Don't you think people do a pretty good job of making a society voluntarily?
    Who wants to try a bottle of merc's "Extroversion Olive Oil?"

  6. #6
    Member Penda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Modern Nomad View Post
    Because the state is a way for them to feel some sort of "power" over the general "community".

    There are these "communities" all over. Sometimes its neighborhood organizations, and they will talk to council men/women who depend on them for their re-elections.

    As far as "banishment" from your circle, i mean, something like stealing from your friends or cheating on someone can make you a social outcast from a large portion of your general acquaintences. But these communities usually have some sort of school ties, be it high school, or college. Or communities where a foreign language was their first language.

    As far as things like "gay marriage", there are communities supporting that. Its when these communities clash, is when the drama for your momma happens. Sometimes, clashing is the best way for long term solutions to develop. But if people clash with no grip on reality, there's little chance for productivity.
    I don't really see this kind of civic-mindedness in the places where I have lived, but perhaps you have. It is true that people form individual communities based on common interests (such as this one), but I don't see this occurring much for towns and cities. Most people hardly know their neighbors these days. If people didn't act like they lived in a vacuum as much there wouldn't be the need for the excessive legislation that occurs today. As far as gay marriage, I don't think there will ever be a nationwide consensus. I can't see most people from Alabama, for instance, ever supporting it.
    There are miles to go before I sleep...

  7. #7
    Member Penda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pure_mercury View Post
    What are the social values you mean? Don't you think people do a pretty good job of making a society voluntarily?
    The most important social value in my mind is personal responsibility, holding yourself accountable for your own actions. This one seems to be heavily declining, which is one reason that nanny states have taken so much power. Another is simple empathy, the consideration of how your actions affect others. Not polluting by dumping trash everywhere. Not driving maniacally in a way that causes accidents. Ironically, some of these opinions were formed from living in Los Angeles for four years, which I found unpleasant in many ways, so if your location is accurate, you must have a drastically different experience there than me
    There are miles to go before I sleep...

  8. #8
    mountain surfing nomadic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Penda View Post
    Not driving maniacally in a way that causes accidents.
    I avoid traffic as much as possible, but I see less road rage than I used to 10-20 years ago in LA. I think its bc of all the freeway shootings that used to happen in the 90's and early 2000...

    Quote Originally Posted by Penda View Post
    I don't really see this kind of civic-mindedness in the places where I have lived, but perhaps you have. It is true that people form individual communities based on common interests (such as this one), but I don't see this occurring much for towns and cities. Most people hardly know their neighbors these days. If people didn't act like they lived in a vacuum as much there wouldn't be the need for the excessive legislation that occurs today. As far as gay marriage, I don't think there will ever be a nationwide consensus. I can't see most people from Alabama, for instance, ever supporting it.
    Random thought: I am still not sure whether there are more anarchists in So Cal or Nor Cal. lolz

    Community activism pretty strong in South Central LA from what i've seen in some projects that I've worked on. I'd imagine ur living in an area with a lot of transplants. But amongst communities of people who have children going to nearby schools, i'd imagine thats the very beginning of it. But yeah, its not a small town mentality where you just say hi to your neighbor and rumors about ppl down the street gets to everyone within hours. But yeah, i mean, maybe u should have some kids and join the PTA? I even heard of some "motorcycle clubs" where random ppl get together who love riding bikes, and cruise the mountains together. but for anyone in LA i've seen the budget crisis, solutions for the California deficit is a pretty active topic even among people who don't really care. Everyone knows a teacher who gotten laid off, and its not very cool to see that.

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    Because as a society we are lazy, and simply want to make some stupid pronouncment 'There ought to be a law' at which point, like the garbage man picking up our refuse on the curb, politicians will simply take it from there and we won't have to think about it again.
    No friend ever served me, and no enemy ever wronged me, whom I have not repaid in full." Lucius Cornelius Sulla

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    Quote Originally Posted by Penda View Post
    I think you must have misunderstood me. I am strongly against the statist mentality, as well as neo-conservatism. I am only interested in making classical liberalism work, and I think it works much better when people individually decide to be more community-minded without government intervention. My complaint is that people turn to the government for answers rather than adopting a civic minded approach on their own. I don't think that a libertarian political system works in the absence of personal pro-social values, which is where we seem to be headed.
    Agreed, but I think the problem is less about the moral failings of individuals and more about the feeling of political apathy and powerlessness that has been systematically instilled in most people for a long time. Part of fixing that depends on education, though a practical model has yet to be proposed that will accommodate such an education except among the elite.
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