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View Diary: A Libertarian Reads "Atlas Shrugged" - Part 2 (109 comments)

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  •  In theory and in fact. (0+ / 0-)

    Libertarian philosophy condones free trade and condems the use of (non-defensive) force to achieve ones ends.

    Stolen property is not legitametly obtained, so trading in it is not a free trade, even if it is done for a profit.  Since slavery is literally man-stealing (since every man owns himself), slave trading is not capitalism.

    I hope that doesn't sound like a tautology.  That's the thinking.

    Results count for more than intentions do.

    by VA Classical Liberal on Tue Dec 08, 2009 at 07:37:21 PM PST

    [ Parent ]

    •  Capitalism is what it is (0+ / 0-)

      Not what libertarians say it is.  For you to say that half the colonies that founded the USA are not capitalist, or that any businessman or corporation who got rich by doing something awful is not a capitalist, is like a Christian saying that any time other Christians murder people or start wars, they're not really Christians.

      The East India Company, Standard Oil, the slaveowners, the robber barons, the monopolists, and Dick Cheney are part of the story of the lust of capital for power.  They happen over and over again.  Why is that?  Because power is not something created artificially by governments.  It is the asymmetry of leverage in the relationships between rich and poor, boss and job-seeker, man and woman, brainwashing advertiser and brainwashed consumer, superpowers and 3rd world states.  The relationships create power and that power is either regulated or it runs its inevitable course of self-amplification and social destabilization.  

      Your definition of capitalism, without those scoundrels, is as irrelevant as the theory that in perfect markets, profits will always dwindle to zero due to perfect competition.  Well, if profits were always zero, where would capitalism be today?  It is the imperfection that harnesses and amplifies human greed - meaning the hope of getting away with it.

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