Yaron Brook’s Ideas

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  • #7485 Reply

    #7489 Reply


    I believe there may be a contradiction in the moral argument against government that Yaron Brook used.

    Yaron made three points:

    1. The initiation of force is immoral.
    2. Government (through taxation) is the initiation of force.
    3. We need a (limited) government.

    If the initiation of force is immoral, then shouldn’t all government be abolished? It would seem Mr. Brook believes that we need a LITTLE amount of force. But if he believes that force is immoral, then isn’t his support of limited government a contradiction?

    #7491 Reply

    Paula Hall

    There is no contradiction.

    A proper government uses force only in retaliation against those who initiate force against others (that is, against those who violate others’ rights). The limited government Yaron advocates would only have that retaliatory function, so it would consist of police to retaliate against domestic criminals, the military to retaliate against foreign aggressors, and law courts to resolve disputes so that people do not resort to force as a means of resolving them. None of these functions, properly executed, consist of initiating force against people.

    Taxation is immoral because it forcibly expropriates wealth from people who did not themselves violate anyone’s rights by initiating force against others. Peaceful individuals who earn their money through voluntary agreements with their employers or others have not violated anyone’s rights, and therefore there is no justification for the government to use force against them.

    The Ayn Rand Lexicon has great information on these concepts and is a much better source than I am. See http://aynrandlexicon.com/lexicon/government.html, http://aynrandlexicon.com/lexicon/taxation.html and http://aynrandlexicon.com/lexicon/individual_rights.html to start.

    #7503 Reply


    I am fine with the idea of voluntary taxation. However, in Objectivist views, does the government maintain a monopoly on law courts, police, and military? If so, does it protect this monopoly through force? Or would a free market of law courts, police, and military be allowed?

    #7869 Reply

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    #13314 Reply

    Thomas Zinsavage

    This is an interesting subject, and many here are making some great points. Really comes down to preference and what you believe really.

    #14834 Reply

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    #22800 Reply


    The word “capitalism” means different thgins in different contexts. It can have an economic meaning, a political meaning, or more of a philosophic meaning. For instance you can see the sharemarket and say this is ‘capitalism’ at work, without any overt political meaning.But aside from these linguistics, the point is this: For capitalism the economic system to work, you need a certain political framework – free markets, property rights, etc. In turn, I would argue that political framework requires a certain *philosophical* framework.You could try to establish a ‘capitalist’ sharemarket in a socialist country, but it will be doomed to failure because of the inherent contradiction. Similarly, you could try to establish free markets, property rights and so on in a culture mired in collectivism, but it will be equally prone to failure for the same reason. The history of NZ the past 25 years is a case in point.Under a capitalist political system you can go join a commune; agreed. But if a large part of the culture regarded living in communes as a moral imperative, it’s unlikely your capitalist system would last for long.Blair, are you saying that capitalism (the political system) can exist within *any* philosophical framework?

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