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Arthur Sayecki Vanguard, “Theory of free trading markets for non-scarce goods and services and its application in electronic commerce of digital products,” Doctoral dissertation, University of Bolton (30 November 2019)

Abstract: The Author brings forth principles and theory of primary and secondary free trading markets for non-scarce goods and services operating on principles of supply, demand and price discovery, and postulates that such markets can exist and contribute to the advancement of society and the world economy. Advances in science and technology have enabled digital duplication and the distribution of electronic content, and opened new pathways of doing business, but have also enabled illicit activities in digital goods, namely digital theft and piracy. An extremely low cost of copying, in a trivially short amount of time, has made digital copies of creative works practically non-scarce, thus destroying the equilibrium of supply and demand. As the majority of digital goods are currently sold and distributed on the Internet through retail outlets, which dictate prices and restrict users through monopolistic terms of use agreements, the rights of creators supersede the rights of consumers. Existing copyright laws serve as a legal basis for such operation of the markets. There are no pre-existing, legally operating secondary trading markets for digital goods, and primary markets do not utilise competitive price discovery, as only the copyright owners are entitled to set arbitrary trading prices. There is no pre-existing scientific framework for the operation of free trading markets for non- scarce goods to serve as a model for establishing electronic trading exchanges, for digital goods in particular, and non-scarce goods in general. This thesis provides a theoretical framework of free trading markets for non-scarce goods and services, as well as examples of practical applications for the theoretical framework in electronic commerce of digital goods and services. A software simulation of a free trading market for non- scarce goods, operating on the principles of this theoretical framework, is also provided. The applied theoretical framework is intended to create equitable trading of digital goods in a free market environment, provide a remedy for the growing piracy of digital goods, and enable investing in commoditised creativity, in a manner similar to investing in stocks or commodities

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“Freedom and Government” (1989)

My article “Freedom and Government,” The Wonderland Times (underground LSU student newspaper), vol. 1, no. 6 (July 5, 1989).

Note: This was written in my Randian minarchist phase; nowadays I would agree with Fig. 2, not Fig. 1. (See Then and Now: From Randian Minarchist to Austro-Anarcho-Libertarian.)

 

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“Libertarian Man!” by Nina Paley

I commissioned my friend, the talented artist and anti-IP Nina Paley, to draw “Libertarian Man” for me.

“Libertarian Man!” for Stephan

Hundred Hundred-and-Fifty Dollar Drawing.  Hundred Dollar Drawings are now $150 due to inflation, but still a bargain! Available here.

I forgot I had done an amateur one for kicks years ago: [continue reading…]

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Least, Sufficient Force: Libertarian Theory of Defense

Interesting article by one “Marco”: “Least, Sufficient Force: Libertarian Theory of Defense,” The Voluntaryist Reader blog (2013). He argues that a victim may use force in self-defense, during an act of aggression, and for  punishment/retribution, after the fact, and that while there are upper bounds on the level of force that may be used in each case, they are different. For punishment to be just, it must be proportional to the offense being punished. So you could kill a murderer but not someone who punched you in the arm. For self-defense, the victim may also use force to defend himself during the attack, but is limited to using the “least, sufficient force” that will prevent or repeal the attack. These standards are different, meaning, for example, that the victim is entitled to kill the aggressor in self-defense in some cases where capital punishment after the fact would be disproportionate. For example if someone is going to give you a severe beating that would not be punishable by death, you may still kill the guy during the act if that’s the only way to stop him.

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From Libertarianism.org‘s The Turney Collection: Never-Before-Seen Archive Tapes: George H. Smith Debates David D. Friedman: Ethics vs. Economics (1981) – The Turney Collection.

Friedman makes an interesting critique of the Marxist theory of exploitation. He says: [continue reading…]

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“Libertarians” Who Object to “Self-Ownership”

 

On self-ownership:

Franklin Harris:

“Libertarianism is simply self-ownership…” That’s just another way of saying libertarianism is incoherent. Ownership is a relationship between two or more things. You can’t own yourself because that’s not a relationship. Libertarian shorthand clouds more than it reveals.

You hear this dumb claim made all the time. As I wrote there:

When you hear people sniff at the NAP, you should hold onto your wallet–they are coming after it.

“Is there a need to reform taxes? Most certainly. Always and everywhere. You can always make a strong case against all forms of taxation and all tax codes and all mechanisms by which a privileged elite attempts to extract wealth from the population. And this is always the first step in any tax reform: get the public seething about the tax code, and do it by way of preparation for step two, which is the proposed replacement system.”Of course, this is the stage at which you need to hold onto your wallet.” —Lew Lew Rockwell

“Run for your life from any man who tells you that money is evil. That sentence is the leper’s bell of an approaching looter.” —Ayn Rand, “Francisco’s Money Speech“

The long thread contains interesting arguments about the non-aggression principle, Rothbard, and so on.

I’ve dealt with the “self-ownership is incoherent” objection many times. See What Libertarianism Is; How We Come To Own Ourselves; Correcting Some Common Libertarian Misconceptions (2011); Yeager and Other Letters Re Liberty article “Intellectual Property and Libertarianism”.

See also:

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Kinsella on Liberty Podcast: Episode 390.

In the second half of a discussion on Disenthrall (for Part I, see KOL389 | Disenthrall: With Patrick Smith and Larken Rose the Morality of Copyright “Piracy”), host Patrick Smith and I discussed recent changes to the Libertarian Party Platform related to aggression and property rights; see Aggression and Property Rights Plank in the Libertarian Party Platform. We also touched on other issues like abandonment of property.

[continue reading…]

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Kinsella on Liberty Podcast: Episode 389.

I appeared on Patrick Smith’s show Disenthrall last night (July 15, 2022), along with Larken Rose, to discuss the morality of piracy of copyrighted content. Larken had posted a video earlier the same day (see below) regarding the HBO series The Anarchists, where he criticized the libertarians who were gleefully pirating the show (downloading unauthorized copies to watch for free) instead of subscribing to HBO to watch it legally. Larken is against copyright but still thinks it’s wrong for people to “freeload” like this–he says it’s a “poophead” thing todo. I disagree that it’s wrong and mentioned this in a series of Tweets. [continue reading…]

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