Argumentation

September 2021 Forums General discussion Argumentation

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  • #89862
    Young Master Smeet
    Participant
    Quote:
    People sold themselves (their bodies, the same one you can shave) into slavery troughout history, to make money for their family, or by pledging themselves as collateral when taking a loan.

    yet they also kept themselves, control of their own bodies, most specifically (and, to be frank, no one sold themself into slavery, they were taken and forced, always. Slavery is an exercise in power.  Submission to power is not a free sale).If you sell me a newspaper, you leave the newspaper behind, you sell me, and you come with you, there is nothing left behind.  The relationship is not remotely the same as a property/commodity relation.

    #89863
    Anonymous
    Inactive
    Fabian wrote:
    Being that world socialists put much weight in educating workers, spreading the idea, including through debates, were there any debates with or responses to “libertarians”, I would like to see what arguments you give against self-ownership principle, and private property as a deontological ethical theory.

     I would tend to agree with Jeremy Bentham“Natural rights is simple nonsense: natural and imprescriptible rights, rhetorical nonsense, nonsense on stilts.”

    #89864
    Anonymous
    Inactive
    Quote:
    yet they also kept themselves, control of their own bodies, most specifically

    Which is irrelevant to the question being that property is a normative ethical concept, and you’re talking about descriptive attributes. Being beaten up doesn’t make beating up ok/ legitimate/ right/ ethical/ moral; describing facts doesn’t adress the question of whether if some concepts are justified or not.

    Quote:
    (and, to be frank, no one sold themself into slavery, they were taken and forced, always. Slavery is an exercise in power.  Submission to power is not a free sale).

    Seems you don’t know much about history (including modern) of slavery. Selling yourself into slavery is mentioned in the code of Hammurabi, Codex Iuris Civilis mentiones three types of slaves- those that were PoWs, those who were born slaves, and those who became slaves by selling themselver or as debt slaves. Even today there is multitude of debt slaves in the world.

    TheOldGreyWhistle wrote:
    “Natural rights is simple nonsense: natural and imprescriptible rights, rhetorical nonsense, nonsense on stilts.”

    So, would you say that there is no such thing as right and wrong, good and evil/ bad? When someone helps you it’s not something good, when someone rapes you, it’s something not bad?

    #89865
    Anonymous
    Inactive
    Fabian wrote:
    “So, would you say that there is no such thing as right and wrong, good and evil/ bad? When someone helps you it’s not something good, when someone rapes you, it’s something not bad?”

    How can I take ‘right’ and ‘wrong’ seriously when they relate to the interests of the existing ruling class? Slavery was once thought to be ‘natural’ and ‘right’ and today selling your labour power is ‘good’ and ‘right’.‘evil’? I do not find the horrors of capitalism ‘evil’. If I did then I would need to expel evil from the world instead of the wages system.

    #89866
    ALB
    Keymaster
    Fabian wrote:
    Kropotkin

    Here’s his answer to your argument:

    Quote:
    There was a time when a family engaged in agriculture supplemented by a few domestic trades could consider the corn they raised and the plain woollen cloth they wove as productions of their own and nobody else’s labor. Even then such a view was not quite correct: there were forests cleared and roads built by common efforts; and even then the family had continually to apply for communal help, as is still the case in so many village communities. But now, in the extremely interwoven state of industry of which each branch supports all others, such an individualistic view can be held no more. If the iron trade and the cotton industry of this country have reached so high a degree of development, they have done so owing to the parallel growth of thousands of other industries, great and small; to the extension of the railway system; to an increase of knowledge among both the skilled engineers and the mass of the workmen; to a certain training in organization slowly developed among producers; and, above all, to the world-trade which has itself grown up, thanks to works executed thousands of miles away. The Italians who died from cholera in digging the Suez Canal or from “tunnel-disease” in the St. Gothard Tunnel have contributed as much towards the enrichment of this country as the British girl who is prematurely growing old in serving a machine at Manchester; and this girl as much as the engineer who made a labor-saving improvement in our machinery. How can we pretend to estimate the exact part of each of them in the riches accumulated around us? (http://dwardmac.pitzer.edu/Anarchist_Archives/kropotkin/revpamphlets/anarchistcommunism.html)

    and

    Quote:
    Let us take a civilised country. The forests have been cleared, the swamps drained. Thousands of road and railways intersect it in all direction; the rivers have been rendered navigable, and the seaports are of easy access. Canals connect the seas. The rocks have been pierced by deep shafts; thousands of manufactures cover the land.  Science has taught men how to use the energy of nature for the satisfaction of his needs. Cities have slowly grown in the long run of ages, and treasures of science and art are accumulated in these centres of civilisation. But—who has made all these marvels?The combined efforts of scores of generations have contributed towards the achievement of these results.Our cities, connected by roads and brought into easy communication with all peopled parts of the globe, are the growth of centuries; and each house in these cities, each factory, each shop, derives its value, its very raison d’etre, from the fact that it is situated on a spot of the globe where thousands or millions have gathered together. Every smallest part of the immense whole which we call the wealth of civilised nations derives its value precisely from being a part of this whole. What would be the value of an immense London shop or storehouse were it not situated precisely in London, which has become the gathering spot for five millions of human beings? And what the value of our coal-pits, our manufactures, our shipbuilding yards, were it not for the immense traffic which goes on across the seas, for the railways which transport mountains of merchandise, for the cities which number their inhabitants by millions? Who is, then, the individual who has the right to step forward and, laying his hands on the smallest part of this immense whole, to say, ‘I have produced this; it belongs to me’? And how can we discriminate, in this immense interwoven whole, the part which the isolated individual may appropriate to himself with the slightest approach to justice? Houses and streets, canals and railways, machines and works of arts, all these have been created by the combined efforts of generations past and present, of men living on these islands and men living thousands of miles away (http://dwardmac.pitzer.edu/Anarchist_Archives/kropotkin/SBA.html).
    #89867
    zundap
    Participant

    I didn’t produce myself, no one does, I am socially produced and so socially owned. I take my part in producing society so I am a (dispossessed) co-owner of society. Everything social is socially produced, anything else is crude egoism.

    #89868
    zundap
    Participant

    I didn’t produce myself, no one does, I am socially produced and so socially owned. I take my part in producing society so I am a (dispossessed) co-owner of society. Everything social is socially produced, anything else is crude egoism.

    #89869
    steve colborn
    Participant

    The things human beings use, to produce what we, as a species, need to live, were laid down tens of millions of years ago.
    The oil, coal, gas etc. Why do certain individuals and collections of individuals, come along and claim the OWNERSHIP of these things, including land! today?
     
    What gives them, these rights of ownership? Could it be the LAWS, that have grown up within CAPITALISM, to sanctify these minority ownership rights? Even using the clain of, DIVINE RIGHT?
    Capitalists cannot claim, PREGENITOR rights. Their ancestors cannot claim ownership on the basis of, PRIOR EXISTENCE, to the rest of humanity.
    They claim ownership rights on the basis of, the FORCE and VIOLENCE that they, control today.
    On this basis, their, ownership, is based on nothing more, nor less, than the MAFIA boss criteria of retaining ownership and control of HIS, or their territories, by the threat and use of violence to preserve the same RIGHTS.
    The minorities control the forces of violence, whether armed forces or police and use the same to ensure THEIR, ownership.
    To claim otherwise, is to misunderstand the nature of propertied society.

    #89870
    Young Master Smeet
    Participant
    Fabian wrote:
    Which is irrelevant to the question being that property is a normative ethical concept, and you’re talking about descriptive attributes. Being beaten up doesn’t make beating up ok/ legitimate/ right/ ethical/ moral; describing facts doesn’t address the question of whether some concepts are justified or not.

    Excepting as when action does not align with the properties concepts in question.  My cyber example (above) set out what would be required to truly own another person.  Otherwise, the ghost in the shell retains real ownership.I could, juridicially, stake out a claim to a portion fo the surface of the sun, but that would be merely an imaginary claim.Or, a more blunt example, you cannot rape an orange, so discussing the ethical implications of that act is moot.

    Fabian wrote:
    Seems you don’t know much about history (including modern) of slavery. Selling yourself into slavery is mentioned in the code of Hammurabi, Codex Iuris Civilis mentions three types of slaves- those that were PoWs, those who were born slaves, and those who became slaves by selling themselver or as debt slaves. Even today there is multitude of debt slaves in the world.

    I’d be more cautious, if I were you, as to staking claims to what people do or do not know based on the slender evidence of a short internet post (as you have done several times in this discussion), it undermines any confidence in your judgement.  You can rebut a claim merely by stating the counter evidence without ad hominem commentary.As it happens, I am perfectly aware of the history of debt slavery, and the anthropological accounts of it that show it was an exercise in power, not a free sale (usually occurring as part of a deliberate policy of making slaves).  It’s also questionable as to the extent the debt could be considered a market transaction, as opposed to a gift/dominance ritual.The point remains, that the debt slave did not “sell” themself, but were forced into slavery by circumstance.  They were already under someone else’s thrall.However, this discussion does usefully illustrate that, far from carrying an emancipatory element, self-ownership is very much tied up in the ideology of dominance and class rule.

    #89871
    Anonymous
    Inactive
    TheOldGreyWhistle wrote:
    How can I take ‘right’ and ‘wrong’ seriously when they relate to the interests of the existing ruling class?

    Mathematics is correct no matter to whose interests it relates to.

    Quote:
    Slavery was once thought to be ‘natural’ and ‘right’ and today selling your labour power is ‘good’ and ‘right’.

    No, it was always wrong, just like employment is. Something being right or wrong is not dependant of it being accepted as such by (majority of) people. 2+2=4 even if most of people think it’s 5, even if thought in public schools it is 5, or even if it’s forbidden by law to say it’s not 5. Principles of ethics that are objective and true are like any other objetive and true principles- in biology, in physics, metemathics, etc- always objective and true.

    ALB wrote:
    Here’s his answer to your argument:

    The point is what follows from this kind of appeals. From talking about how the wealth of the capitalists is not their because they have not worked for it, but have stolen it from the workers follows a desire for a revolution where the the workers take from the capitalists what is not theirs. But does from the talking about everything being “communal” because of vague interconnectedness of labor done in past and present and in all places follow the desire of the community to take from each individual worker that which he personally made because “it is not his”? Kropotkin doesn’t thinks so:”when we see a peasant who is in possession of just the amount of land he can cultivate, we do not think it reasonable to turn him off his little farm. He exploits nobody, and nobody would have the right to interfere with his work.””when we see a Sheffield cutler, or a Leeds clothier working with their own tools or handloom, we see no use in taking the tools or the handloom to give to another worker. The clothier or cutler exploit nobody. But when we see a factory whose owners claim to keep to themselves the instruments of labour used by 1,400 girls, and consequently exact from the labour of these girls . . . profit . . . we consider that the people . . . are fully entitled to take possession of that factory and to let the girls produce . . . for themselves and the rest of the community . . . and take what they need of house room, food and clothing in return.” [Act for Yourselves, p. 104, p. 105]”revolution would take care not to touch the holding of the peasant who cultivates it himself . . . without wage labour. But we would expropriate all land that was not cultivated by the hands of those who at present possess the land.””scope of Expropriation would only apply to everything that enables any man — be he financier, mill-owner, or landlord — to appropriate theproduct of others’ toil.””man who by dint of privation has contrived to buy a house just large enough to hold his family. And we are going to deprive him of his hard-earned happiness, to turn him into the street! Certainly not . . . Let him work in his little garden, too.”“the peasant to cultivate his piece of land, alone if he wishes; free is the shoe maker to remain at his last or the blacksmith in his small forge.” [The Conquest of Bread, p. 61, p. 95, p. 95–6 and p. 96]And I don’t know who does thinks so, except the state capitalists.

    zundap wrote:
    I am socially produced and so socially owned.

    So you support the society taking people’s organs without their consent?

    steve colborn wrote:
    The minorities control the forces of violence, whether armed forces or police and use the same to ensure THEIR, ownership.

    Would it be ok to use (threat of) violence to ensure ownership if it’s done by the majority?

    Quote:
    To claim otherwise, is to misunderstand the nature of propertied society.

    What I make is my property, it’s simple. That’s why capitalism is wrong, not because there is wealth inquality per se, but because wealth is in the hands of the ones who have not labor for it.

    Young Master Smeet wrote:
    My cyber example (above) set out what would be required to truly own another person. 

    No, you talked about what would be required to truly control another person. Which is not a prequsit in owning another person, which was (and is) practiced in millions of cases.

    Quote:
    I could, juridicially, stake out a claim to a portion fo the surface of the sun, but that would be merely an imaginary claim.Or, a more blunt example, you cannot rape an orange, so discussing the ethical implications of that act is moot.

    And this nonsense has what to do with slavery (which, as I said, was, and is, a very real and practicable thing)?

    Quote:
    I’d be more cautious, if I were you, as to staking claims to what people do or do not know based on the slender evidence of a short internet post (as you have done several times in this discussion), it undermines any confidence in your judgement. 

    “no one sold themself into slavery, they were taken and forced, always. ” is an obvious display of ignorance of the history of slavery.  

    Quote:
    As it happens, I am perfectly aware of the history of debt slavery, and the anthropological accounts of it that show it was an exercise in power, not a free sale (usually occurring as part of a deliberate policy of making slaves).

    I really hope you are not being so presumptuous as to claim that you know the exact nature of every case of debt bondage and selling one self into slavery in history. 

    Quote:
    The point remains, that the debt slave did not “sell” themself, but were forced into slavery by circumstance.

    Being “forced” by biology not to be able to fly or breathe under water is not really coersion nor is it limitation of anyone’s freedom. The majority of barters and trades that exist are “forced” by people’s need to eat, drink, be protected from the elements, and can be said to be “coersion by circumstance”, but you’d just end up sounding ridiculous and look like someone just babbling nonsense to promote some ideology, in the lack of rational arguments.

    Quote:
    However, this discussion does usefully illustrate that, far from carrying an emancipatory element, self-ownership is very much tied up in the ideology of dominance and class rule.

    Another demagogical non-argument which is basically a psychologist fallacy.

    #89872
    steve colborn
    Participant

    steve colborn wrote:The minorities control the forces of violence, whether armed forces or police and use the same to ensure THEIR, ownership.
     
    Would it be ok to use (threat of) violence to ensure ownership if it’s done by the majority?
    What exactly, do you mean by “majority ownership?

    #89873
    Young Master Smeet
    Participant
    Fabian wrote:
    Young Master Smeet wrote:
    My cyber example (above) set out what would be required to truly own another person. 

    No, you talked about what would be required to truly control another person. Which is not a prequsit in owning another person, which was (and is) practiced in millions of cases.

    And property involves the right and power to dispose of and control an article, exclusively. If I sell myself, and yet retain the capacity to scratch my arse, then I am exercising control over someone else’s property, illegitimately.

    Fabian wrote:
    And this nonsense has what to do with slavery (which, as I said, was, and is, a very real and practicable thing)?

    The topic of discussion is “self-ownership”.  However, my example of ‘owning a peice of the sun’ is apposite to slavery, etc. Formally, it would be possible to buy an unenforceable property rights, legally.  that would have very little to do with the reality of substantial ownership.

    Quote:
    I really hope you are not being so presumptuous as to claim that you know the exact nature of every case of debt bondage and selling one self into slavery in history.

      I hope so too, and I don’t understand why you have raised that irrelevent aspiration, since I made no such claim.  But I do note your return to ad hominem argumentation.

    Quote:
    Being “forced” by biology not to be able to fly or breathe under water is not really coersion nor is it limitation of anyone’s freedom. The majority of barters and trades that exist are “forced” by people’s need to eat, drink, be protected from the elements, and can be said to be “coercion by circumstance”, but you’d just end up sounding ridiculous and look like someone just babbling nonsense to promote some ideology, in the lack of rational arguments.

    Apologies, I wasn’t clear, the circumstances of coercion were a deliberate policy to dominate and control by the slave taker.

    Quote:
    Another demagogical non-argument which is basically a psychologist fallacy.

    How are you applying the psychologists fallacy here?  You’ve just sacrificed thousands of electrons demonstrating that self ownership includes the capacity of selling yourself into slavery, so it seems evident to me that that seriously blunts its emancipatory connotations.Anyway, I think we’ve hit circularity, thanks for the discussion. 

    #89874
    ALB
    Keymaster
    Fabian wrote:
    The point is what follows from this kind of appeals. From talking about how the wealth of the capitalists is not their because they have not worked for it, but have stolen it from the workers follows a desire for a revolution where the the workers take from the capitalists what is not theirs. But does from the talking about everything being “communal” because of vague interconnectedness of labor done in past and present and in all places follow the desire of the community to take from each individual worker that which he personally made because “it is not his”? Kropotkin doesn’t thinks so:

    I hold no brief for Kropotkin (after all, although he was a communist he wasn’t a Marxist!) but I think you have misunderstood him here. In the passages you quote he was talking about the revolution and expropriation and explaining that “expropriation” would not apply to “a peasant who is in possession of just the amount of land he can cultivate” nor to “a Sheffield cutler, or a Leeds clothier working with their own tools or handloom”. I don’t imagine this will happen either. After the revolution, when common ownership of the land, instruments of production and the products (on being produced) has been established, Kropotkin envisaged the application of the principle “from each according to their abilities, to each according to their needs”. As he put it very eloquently (can’t fault him here):

    Quote:
    The means of production and of satisfaction of all needs of society, having been created by the common efforts of all, must be at the disposal of all. The private appropriation of requisites for production is neither just nor beneficial. All must be placed on the same footing as producers and consumers of wealth

    and

    Quote:
    Common possession of the necessaries for production implies the common enjoyment of the fruits of the common production; and we consider that an equitable organisation of society can only arise when every wage-system is abandoned, and when everybody, contributing for the common well-being to the full extent of his capacities, shall enjoy also from the common stock of society to the fullest possible extent of his needs.(Anarchist Communism: http://www.fourmilab.ch/etexts/www/kropotkin/ancom/)

    I imagine that he would envisage his peasant and the artisan Sheffield cutler and Leeds clothier continuing to work as before if they wanted to except not producing for sale, and having the same right as everybody else to satisfy their needs without having to pay, not that there are too many artisan cutlers or clothiers left these days.

    #89875
    Anonymous
    Inactive
    Fabian wrote:
    “Mathematics is correct no matter to whose interests it relates to.”

    Morality is not mathematics.  It can be shown that morality has changed throughout history

    #89876
    zundap
    Participant
    zundap wrote:
    I am socially produced and so socially owned.
    Fabian wrote:
    So you support the society taking people’s organs without their consent?

     Society could do what it likes with me, it could, if it had a mind, to have my balls for paper weights without my consent. Society could also ‘disown’ me, then where would I be?

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