Sign In or Create an Account
Currently the private prison system is so in bed with the state, it's hard to really call it private. I think for private prison to really work, it needs to be linked to private justice. If your judge works for a justice company, and that company is going to have to pay a pretty penny to incarcerate somebody, then there will exist an extremely strong incentive to not over punish, while at the same time, if they don't punish enough, people won't subscribe to them.
I think the biggest difference is the ABCT, Austrian Business Cycle Theory. With this theory, the market efficiently allocates capital and sets the interest rate. When imposed central banks fiddle with this interest rate, it causes misallocations of capital in the economy, which causes bubbles that eventually pop.
For example, in ABCT the great depression wasn't caused by the central bank suddenly raising interest rates in a downturn. In fact, the initial great depression wasn't the problem, it was the fix. All through the roaring 20's the central banks printed up and loaned out more money into the economy than there was gold to back it, distorting the interest rates and messing up the capital structure. Eventually all those bubbles popped, and caused a depression (sound familiar?). The solution would have been for the central bank to stop loaning out printed up money, and let the mis allocations of capital clear themselves out of the economy efficiently. Instead, they did a whole bunch of stupid things, like taxes, government programs, tariffs, revaluation of gold, and eventually a war.
I'm an Austrian myself, but most economist intellectuals hate Austrian because it implies that the market can manage the economy more efficiently and competently than the experts (sound familiar too?)
A big part of the problem is that US monetary policy, high income taxes, and massive regulations drove trillions of dollars worth of industry out of the USA into countries like China. Of course, there still would have been global supply chains, either way, but US government interference caused it to become massively over-exaggerated with the USA becoming overly dependent on imports.
I look at it like a tug-o-war. Either you are pulling on the side for more freedom, or for less freedom. If you are on the side for more freedom, the details don't matter too much, we can work out the details when it comes to that.
If you loan your friend $1000, and he uses that to buy a gun and shoot somebody, does that make you liable? No, of course not. Even in a pure libertarian society, there is still a lot of liability protection for people who buy shares, bonds, or invest in a company, who would have no reason to believe that the company would violate the freedom and property rights of others.
Yeah, the fed has the power to print money, which is a huge power, but they don't have the power to print up real goods and services. They don't have the power to print up houses, steel, wheat, or other things. So one way or another, they are issuing checks that the economy can't cash. They can delay the day of reckoning some, but the more they do, the more it fucks everything up.
Low interest rates are like any other market price. They communicate how to allocate capital. A healthy economy finds a balance that sits between production and consumption, between long term investments and short term investments. If you can buy a nice new TV at 1% then why save 5 years to buy it, but if you can only get one at 25% financing, then most people will say fuck it, I'll just save up a few years and get it. If a company can finance a 20 year long term investment, like Mr Fusion, if the interest rates are near zero, then financing it will be cheap. But if interest rates are 30%, then financing that over two decades years would crush them.
By lowering the interest rates below what a free market would, the fed is basically lying to us all about the capital we have. It would be like if I was a brick supplier, and I promised you 1000 bricks per day for a whole year, for dirt cheap. So then you go off and make all these huge plans, start all these building projects, and so on. But then after supplying you faithfully for a few months, I show up in my brick truck one day with 100 bricks. I ran out. I sent you signals that lied to you about how many I had and how inexpensive they were. So now you're fucked, you started all these huge projects, did all this refinancing, did whatever, and now all the projects you are doing have to come to a screeching halt while you figure out what to do. Or maybe I supply you 1000 bricks, but they are now the size of legos. Watering down the money is probably what the fed is going to do. Either way, you are fucked because I was a fraud and a liar.
In theory it's private, but in practice is a marriage made in hell. The government gives them a ready made banking cartel, and in return, they give the government endless cheap financing.
Well, the truth is, that if I as an individual have free speech rights, then me grouping together with other individuals, that doesn't magically change the fact that we have free speech rights. But right now, the corporate world is massively distorted.
First, the tech industry have jumped in bed with the government. They are literally acting as an enforcement branch of the federal government for political quid-pro-quo. So this isn't just about corporations doing as they please with their property. When they do it while effectively acting as an enforcement branch of the government, they are violating peoples rights.
Second, in order to finance the federal government the US central bank has been keeping interest rates extremely abnormally low. But the thing is, those same interest rates have a tendency to create market bubbles. A lot of executives have been making extreme wealth from these low interest rates financing stock buybacks. Many corporations no longer have to provide much value to the market to get extreme wealth from their stocks, so they have lost all sense of market accountability. Zombie companies are able to linger along, by constantly refinancing at low interest rates. In a normal world, they would go under and their capital assets would be freed up to be used for more productive purposes.
It's not a coincidence that social unrest has been slowly but steadily growing, ever since the 2008 bailout. The market is not just about profit, but also a mechanism for clearing out unproductive activity. When you constantly bail it out, and unproductive activities can not be cleared by market means, then they it tends to grow out of control until the entire system becomes unstable and collapses.
The dynamics of government still tends to harm families more than it helps them. Of course, we should fight abuse in all forms. IMHO, the free market tends to help family dynamics. For example, the left often credits government regulations for ending child labor, and getting kids in schools, but the truth is that free market capitalism creating a large middle class was what was really responsible for that.
It annoys me when the left says this. The family structure is not socialist. I don't give my wife money and food and board because she points a gun to my "greedy capitalist" head and makes me pay out. I give her money because I love her. Nobody forces me to stay in this relationship, and nobody forces her. If I raped her and said she agreed to it because of the "social contract" that her friends voted on, the jury would laugh me out of the room, and then throw me in jail and toss out the key. No normal relationship acts socialist. Same with our kids. I provide for them and support them because I choose to, not because some asshole points a gun to my face and makes me. Sometimes courts make you pay child support, but that by definition would be a failed relationship, not a successful one. Government programs by their very nature are a failed relationship. Nothing good, normal or whole acts that way. Don't pretend that government is a voluntary agreement, voluntary family, or voluntary community when it is actually just deadly force. The fact that they have to lie like that proves all the more that they are full of shit.
Well, Marx defined it as an economic system characterized by private ownership over the means of production, for profit. Since then, there have been a lot more additions to the definition to make it seem more like a system where large corporations and conglomerates exploit resources and people. None of these definitions are perfect, but a system characterized by private property is good enough. Once you respect property rights, all the other things tend to follow.
I think it goes both ways though. The US government knows that armed citizens outnumber them 100 to 1, and so are far more measured on their attacks of the people.
Also, historically, the government has had serious blow back because of private gun ownership. During the US civil war, the military was fine with conquering the south, but vehemently opposed to a military occupation, mainly because of the armed citizens. The US war on armed natives was a compete disaster, and they were forced to change from a kill strategy to a reservation and welfare strategy. The raid on the branch davidians and ruby ridge cost the government retaliation in the OKC bombing costing them millions of dollars and several lives, for every life taken. When confronted with the calculated cost of an all out assault on gun owners, they were forced to back down. The more recent war on Afghanistan has been a costly disaster because of armed insurgents that the state can't disarm.
Well, during the radio era, before the government came in and regulated everything, a series of court cases seemed to be converging on a spectrum property rights system. However, one thing that really caught my attention is the unregulated wifi spectrum. There is absolutely no property rights is certain parts of this spectrum, but rather than go to hell like a tragedy of the commons, radical and rapid innovation happened in this space, and the market worked it out without any government or court interference at all.
Also, another issue is just the physics of it. RF is just modulated photons, in the radio spectrum instead of the optical light spectrum. If I have a flash-light, and you have a flash-light, and we shine them in a way that crosses paths, anybody with a little bit of sense would determine that your light is not stopping me from shining my light, or stopping people from seeing my light. The issue is always the position and the sensitivity of the person receiving the light signal. None of the information is lost.
I suspect that even if we had an frequency modulation property rights system, strong market incentives to make the most of this spectrum would eventually converge on systems that most efficient use of the spectrum anyhow. It's only when you have bullshit regulations that inherent inefficiencies pop up.
Std Oil was a monopoly, but they also drove the price of oil down 90% and kept it there for over a century. They literally saved the whales. It is very difficult to maintain a free market monopoly without aggressive price discounting.
But even then Std Oil started to break. Before it was over, they were getting their ass kicked by the oil services industry. They wouldn't offer oil services to smaller competitors who were taking over Texas. The share holders revolted, and got the government to break up their monopoly, separating off their oil services industry. Another example of how on their own, monopolies tend to become bloated and unresponsive to the market.
In the agrarian era where almost all wealth was proportional to the land holdings, land taxes had a point. But in the modern industrial and information age era, all it's going to do is make US farms noncompetitive on the global market place, and cause us to have ultra expensive food, while not really fixing anything.
I think in current times, rent and housing are so expensive, that land taxes seem attractive. But the thing is, that is because we have a federal reserve banking cartel creating real estate bubbles, that price normal people out of the marketplace, encouraging people to over-zone real estate to maximize asset values. Land taxes will do nothing to fix that problem, ending the fed and zoning laws will.
The idea tax is no tax at all, but if you must have a tax, the optimal would be to at least let people create the wealth and save it, before you steal it when they use it. Things like end use sales tax tend to attack end use consumption, while things like income taxes tends to attack the production side of the economy and attack wealth creation.
Just before WW2, the USA had among the crappiest Army and Navy in the world. But by time WW2 ended, we were pumping out a mind-blowing battleship per week, and successfully waged a military war on two fronts, and nuked the hell out of Japan. That didn't happen because of magic, but because the USA had a massive industrial base created by capitalism, that in times of need could be drawn upon to wage war. It was never about the size of our military, but the size of our economic base. Today, the USA has a massive military, but we have no security because we have gutted our economy while China's economy grows huge. In order to have true security, we need to return to free markets.
There are tens and millions of young talented people in China who don't want to be there because the regime can crush their personal and economic liberties any time. Countries like the USA should really take advantage of that, to suck capital and talent out of China back to the USA.
IMO, the tax policy, monetary policy, and regulations are killing us. China didn't do that to us, we did. If we can get the government off our back, then we are more than capable of competing with China head on.
The thing is most people are W2. Their employer takes taxes out of their paycheck before they even see it. Of course, there are some jobs you can do as an independent or an entrepreneur, but there are also lots on ones where you just can't.
Literally. The Catholic Church was literally in bed with the state for 1000 years before the separation of church and state. Any bullshit that you can think of that the state tries to pull off, has already been tried. The doctrine, the social justice warriors, the guilt trips and fear mongering, the corruption, the control of the information. It's all there.
However, the protestant reformation was still pretty violent, but it was 1000's of regional conflicts over an extended period of time, rather than a massive decisive war like WW2, and a genocide of the people.
I think Schiff is sincere. I mean his dad was literally a martyr for opposing income taxes, and wrote the book on economic prosperity. I just think his argument is flawed. Also, I suspect bitcoin is indeed in a bubble right now, and gold is not, but I still believe bitcoin is a real phenomenon, and still useful. Housing was in a bubble too, but houses are still useful and valuable. I don't think bitcoin is going away.
With bitcoin and gold he may have some points, but with bitcoin vs the US dollar he claims that the dollar will always have more value because in the end the US government backs it by force. But that's exactly what drives up bitcoin value. The more governments impose inflation taxes, income taxes, transaction taxes, and currency controls (like they always do), the more attractive bitcoin looks as not only an alternative currency, but an alternative economy. I just don't buy his argument that the US dollar or any government currency is going to be a more trustworthy store of value over a long time, than bitcoin. I mean, is Schiff really going to argue that he would rather have Zimbabwe dollars, or Venezuela bolivars over bitcoins because those governments can back their money with force?
Seriously, of all the problems in the world ... government that is too small and powerless, is not one of them.
I'm painfully aware that Trump didn't decrease the size of government, inspite of appearing like he is on our side. But something else extremely important is happening. For years, the left has taken advantage of their near monopoly control over the media to try and morph and change the culture into a socialist shit-hole. Now that media is becoming decentralized, and impossible to control, the REAL culture has strongly reasserted itself and for the first time ever is pushing back, and it turns out that people don't want the government to baby them all the time, don't want to be in a constant war against the whites, men, and the rich, and would rather have decent paying jobs, the kind of jobs that only a functioning free market can provide.
Politics is downstream of culture, and the culture is distinctly becoming more libertarian, in spite of all the institutions attacking it.
It seems like the most likely path forward to get the government out of our money and finances.
The government is physical force, but you can't shoot information with a tank, their force and power isn't too useful to impose their will on information, or accounting, or money which is information about value.
Once information controls totally fail, they will probably try to revert back to physical force. It remains to be seen, how successful they will be.