Are governments just protection rackets for the 1%?

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Re: Are governments just protection rackets for the 1%?

Postby Zero_Sum » Tue Dec 05, 2017 2:14 am

iambiguous wrote:
In any day and age the extent to which folks are impotent revolves by and large around the extent to which they believe that they are. For the objectivists however those who do not share their own political prejudices regarding either 1] the role of government or 2] the manner in which governments reflect the nature of political economy, may or may not in fact be impotent. But what counts far, far more is their rabid conviction that they ought to be.

Yet both sides are able to formulate reasonable arguments in defending either political narrative: http://www.debate.org/debates/Conservat ... -nation/1/

Provided of course the fiercest ideologues here can agree on precisely what it means to be a true liberal or a true conservative. And [it goes without saying] leaving out the stuff that folks like Marx and Engels tacked onto the debate.

Again, from my frame of mind, the focus here revolves less around determining [either empirically or in terms of political philosophy] who is more rational or more virtuous, and more in acknowledging the role that dasein, conflicting goods and political economy play in the actual formation of any one particular individual's set of values.

And this part above all else is where the objectivists [at both extremes] fear to tread.

Or so it surely seems to me.


What will dasein do for ongoing market melt ups around the world, stagnant wages, and tell me about the price of tea in China?
The condition of man... is a condition of war of everyone against everyone.

I put for the general inclination of all mankind, a perpetual and restless desire of power after power, that ceaseth only in death.

-Thomas Hobbes-
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Re: Are governments just protection rackets for the 1%?

Postby Arminius » Tue Dec 05, 2017 6:44 pm

Zero_Sum wrote:
Arminius wrote:Timocracy:

Wikipedia wrote:A timocracy (from Greek τιμή timē, "price, worth" and -κρατία -kratia, "rule")[1] is a state where only property owners may participate in government. The more extreme forms of timocracy, where power derives entirely from wealth with no regard for social or civic responsibility, may shift in their form and become a plutocracy where the wealthy and powerful use their power to increase their wealth.
Timocracy and property

Solon introduced the ideas of timokratia as a graded oligarchy in his Solonian Constitution for Athens in the early 6th century BC. His was the first known deliberately implemented form of timocracy, allocating political rights and economic responsibility depending on membership of one of four tiers of the population. Solon defined these tiers by measuring how many bushels of produce each man could produce in a year, namely:

Pentacosiomedimni – "Men of the 500 bushel", those who produced 500 bushels of produce per year, could serve as generals in the army
Hippeis – Knights, those who could equip themselves and one cavalry horse for war, valued at 300 bushels per year
Zeugitae – Tillers, owners of at least one pair of beasts of burden, valued at 200 bushels per year, could serve as Hoplites
Thetes – Manual laborers

N. G. L. Hammond supposes Solon instituted a graduated tax upon the upper classes, levied in a ratio of 6:3:1, with the lowest class of thetes paying nothing in taxes but remaining ineligible for elected office.

Aristotle later wrote in his Nicomachean Ethics (Book 8, Chapter 10) about three "true political forms" for a state, each of which could appear in corrupt form, becoming one of three negative forms. Aristotle describes timocracy in the sense of rule by property-owners: it comprised one of his true political forms. Aristotelian timocracy approximated to the constitution of Athens, although Athens exemplified the corrupted version of this form, described as democracy.
Timocracy, comparable values, and Plato's five regimes
Main article: Plato's five regimes

In The Republic, Plato describes five regimes (of which four are unjust). Timocracy is listed as the first "unjust" regime. Aristocracy degenerates into timocracy when, due to miscalculation on the part of its governed class, the next generation of guardians and auxiliaries includes persons of an inferior nature (the persons with souls made of iron or bronze, as opposed to the ideal guardians and auxiliaries, who have souls made of gold and silver). A timocracy, in choosing its leaders, is "inclining rather to the more high-spirited and simple-minded type, who are better suited for war".[2] The city-state of Sparta provided Plato with a real-world model for this form of government. Modern observers might describe Sparta as a totalitarian or one-party state, although the details we know of its society come almost exclusively from Sparta's enemies. The idea of militarism-stratocracy accurately reflects the fundamental values of Spartan society.

References:

Harper, Douglas (November 2001). ""Timocracy" etymology". Online Etymology Dictionary. Retrieved 2008-10-25.
Rep. 8.547e; Cahn, Steven M., Classics of Political and Moral Philosophy, Oxford University Press, 2002. ISBN 0199791155


In other words an aristocracy.

An aristocracy or oligarchy (degenerated aristocracy). Both are two "sides of the same coin".

Zero_Sum wrote:The United States has its own aristocracy and they're all politically,socially, or economically inept.

Yes.
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Re: Are governments just protection rackets for the 1%?

Postby Zero_Sum » Wed Dec 06, 2017 6:25 am

I almost want to bring the divine rights of kings back as a smart one would know how to reign in on an out of control aristocracy through public executions. Plato referred to this as the intelligent philosopher king. Makes me want to become a neo monarchist now. If the king or his paternal lineage got out of line you killed them supplanting with another king where the crowds would say, the king is dead, long live the king.

One thing is for certain, it will take a lot of body bags to clear up the corruption of both modern aristocracies and governments. If such a fate comes within our time I look forward to many public executions and people hanging from lamp posts. The rot within modern societies are deep and pervasive where the only way to clear it out is by cutting at its roots.
The condition of man... is a condition of war of everyone against everyone.

I put for the general inclination of all mankind, a perpetual and restless desire of power after power, that ceaseth only in death.

-Thomas Hobbes-
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Re: Are governments just protection rackets for the 1%?

Postby Greatest I am » Wed Dec 06, 2017 4:51 pm

Zero_Sum wrote:I almost want to bring the divine rights of kings back as a smart one would know how to reign in on an out of control aristocracy through public executions. Plato referred to this as the intelligent philosopher king. Makes me want to become a neo monarchist now. If the king or his paternal lineage got out of line you killed them supplanting with another king where the crowds would say, the king is dead, long live the king.

One thing is for certain, it will take a lot of body bags to clear up the corruption of both modern aristocracies and governments. If such a fate comes within our time I look forward to many public executions and people hanging from lamp posts. The rot within modern societies are deep and pervasive where the only way to clear it out is by cutting at its roots.


Better to depose than kill.

Kings are hereditary positions. These days, and with the size of governments, better to have the well educated in governance compete for the job.

No death is required if the public will pushes the political will to implement such a competition.

The public will likely have to revolt though before it can make it's owners come to heel. That could even be a tax revolt so we need not just look to killing.

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Re: Are governments just protection rackets for the 1%?

Postby iambiguous » Wed Dec 06, 2017 7:15 pm

Zero_Sum wrote:
iambiguous wrote:
In any day and age the extent to which folks are impotent revolves by and large around the extent to which they believe that they are. For the objectivists however those who do not share their own political prejudices regarding either 1] the role of government or 2] the manner in which governments reflect the nature of political economy, may or may not in fact be impotent. But what counts far, far more is their rabid conviction that they ought to be.

Yet both sides are able to formulate reasonable arguments in defending either political narrative: http://www.debate.org/debates/Conservat ... -nation/1/

Provided of course the fiercest ideologues here can agree on precisely what it means to be a true liberal or a true conservative. And [it goes without saying] leaving out the stuff that folks like Marx and Engels tacked onto the debate.

Again, from my frame of mind, the focus here revolves less around determining [either empirically or in terms of political philosophy] who is more rational or more virtuous, and more in acknowledging the role that dasein, conflicting goods and political economy play in the actual formation of any one particular individual's set of values.

And this part above all else is where the objectivists [at both extremes] fear to tread.

Or so it surely seems to me.


What will dasein do for ongoing market melt ups around the world, stagnant wages, and tell me about the price of tea in China?


Again, my understanding of dasein here revolves entirely around the extent to which others understand the gist of my argument here:

a man amidst mankind...

That is the paradox, right? I am an individual....a man; yet, in turn, I am but one of 6,500,000,000 additional men and women that constitutes what is commonly called "mankind". So, in what sense can I, as an individual, grasp my identity as separate and distinct from mankind? How do I make intelligent distinctions between my personal, psychological "self" [the me "I" know intimately from day to day], my persona [the me "I" project -- often as a chameleon -- in conflicting interactions with others], and my historical and ethnological self as a white male who happened adventiously to be born and raised to view reality from the perpective of a 20th century United States citizen?

How does all of this coalesce into who I think I am? And how does this description contrast with how others grasp who they think I am? Is there a way to derive an objective rendering of my true self? Can I know objectively who I am?

No, I don't think so.

Identity is ever constructed, deconstructed and reconstructed over the years by hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of variables---some of which we had/have no choice/control regarding. We really are "thrown" into a fortuitous smorgasbord of demographic factors at birth and then molded and manipulated as children into whatever configuration of "reality" suits the cultural [and political] institutions of our time.

On the other hand:

In my view, one crucial difference between people is the extent to which they become more or less self-conscious of this. Why? Because, obviously, to the extent that they do, they can attempt to deconstruct the past and then reconstruct the future into one of their own more autonomous making.

But then what does this really mean? That is the question that has always fascinated me the most. Once I become cognizant of how profoundly problematic my "self" is, what can "I" do about it? And what are the philosophical implications of acknowledging that identity is, by and large, an existential contraption that is always subject to change without notice? What can we "anchor" our identity to so as to make this prefabricated...fabricated...refabricated world seem less vertiginous? And, thus, more certain.

Is it any wonder that so many invent foundationalist anchors like Gods and Reason and Truth? Scriptures from one vantage point or another. Anything to keep from acknowledging just how contingent, precarious, uncertain and ultimately meaningless our lives really are.

Or, of course, is that just my foundation?


As this, in turn, is reflected in both liberal and conservative narratives [political prejudices] regarding the nature of government in our lives. And of those rabid conflicts regarding what the role of government ought to be.

Folks like PK on the left and uccisore on the right seem intent on arguing from what I construe to be an objectivist frame of mind.

And to the extent I interject dasein into these debates, it revolves around that part of "I" which passes judgment on the behaviors of others --- as either more or less in sync with behaviors it is said that all rational and virtuous men and women are obligated to embody.

In other words, in order to qualify as one of the good guys: "one of us".
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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