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The State as a Part of the Market

FREEDO
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8/14/2011 1:00:06 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
It has recently occurred to me that the line drawn between the government and the free market is much more arbitrary than is commonly expressed.

Free Marketeers(AnCaps) seem to go on about the workings of the market and how it would go forth with it's functions in the absence of the state. But what if that's simply beside the point? If all these perfect market pressures that seem to theoretically balance things so well really worked, why didn't it prevent the invention of a state to begin with? Is a Capitalist in need of conceding that this is the only one true market failure? Surely, if the market really is so perfect then this one failure is quite a doozy because it just undoes everything. The workings of the market completely fall apart due to this.

But what if that was no failure at all? In-fact, what if it is the natural way of things? What if I ask too many rhetorical questions? Nevermind that last one.

In a pure market, the choice of committing violence is met with certain market pressures. Naturally, at times, the pressures will allow it. According to AnCaps' own theories, there are those who make their very living off the fact. These "private defense agencies" are payed by those who want protection for their property as well as threat of violence, all BY threat of violence.

Here is where the problem begins. Who is to say that the agency has no right to use violence against whomever they wish if they have the might? Certainly not a state. They are making the economic risk, aren't they? Might is right. If someone is uninsured with defense, they are fair game. It was their chose not to be insured. Perhaps they are insured but it's by a small agency. Any large agency could over power it. Perhaps you may say that no one would pay such a barbaric agency for their services. What if these raids against smaller agencies mean more revenue? Revenue that would lower prices, almost to nothing. Is the whole theory not founded on self-interest? Certainly people would pay for such cheap and powerful service.

Here is where the problem comes to fruition. Who in their right mind would buy from any agency which is small and expensive as opposed to powerful and cheap? No one. And just what does that mean? You have figured out what I am getting at, you're no fool(well, not most of you, at least not in this sense). The very definition of a state is a monopoly on force. And this is precisely what is created out of market pressures.

They say we need to return to the free market. The truth is, we have never left it. The only way the market could stop being free is if it became coerced by something completely removed from it( a god, etc).

It doesn't even end here. This is only one aspect of the market. Only defense agencies becoming monopolized. Though it is for a different discussion, I could very well make a similar case for the natural monopolization of EVERYTHING. Ultimately leading to Fascism.

I rest my case.
GRAND POOBAH OF DDO

fnord
Ragnar_Rahl
Posts: 19,297
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8/14/2011 1:19:33 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
If all these perfect market pressures that seem to theoretically balance things so well really worked, why didn't it prevent the invention of a state to begin with?
The market consists of production and trade, not of violence. Violent services can be sold ona market, but their actual implementation occurs where markets cease to exist.

Furthermore, the state predates significantly specialized economic behavior.
It came to be at its height. It was commanded to command. It was a capital before its first stone was laid. It was a monument to the spirit of man.
FREEDO
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8/14/2011 1:37:02 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 8/14/2011 1:19:33 AM, Ragnar_Rahl wrote:
If all these perfect market pressures that seem to theoretically balance things so well really worked, why didn't it prevent the invention of a state to begin with?
The market consists of production and trade, not of violence. Violent services can be sold ona market, but their actual implementation occurs where markets cease to exist.

Semantic. The point is that the market creates pressure which produce it.

Furthermore, the state predates significantly specialized economic behavior.

Very semantic.
GRAND POOBAH OF DDO

fnord
Ragnar_Rahl
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8/14/2011 2:14:08 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 8/14/2011 1:37:02 AM, FREEDO wrote:
At 8/14/2011 1:19:33 AM, Ragnar_Rahl wrote:
If all these perfect market pressures that seem to theoretically balance things so well really worked, why didn't it prevent the invention of a state to begin with?
The market consists of production and trade, not of violence. Violent services can be sold ona market, but their actual implementation occurs where markets cease to exist.

Semantic. The point is that the market creates pressure which produce it.
Then get us there, it can't be our starting point.


Furthermore, the state predates significantly specialized economic behavior.

Very semantic.
No, chronological.
It came to be at its height. It was commanded to command. It was a capital before its first stone was laid. It was a monument to the spirit of man.
Ragnar_Rahl
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8/14/2011 2:15:19 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
If it is semantic-- so what? You say state is part of the market-- your whole topic is contingent on what market means. If you're wrong on that, this thread is useless and incoherent.
It came to be at its height. It was commanded to command. It was a capital before its first stone was laid. It was a monument to the spirit of man.
FREEDO
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8/14/2011 2:34:18 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 8/14/2011 2:15:19 AM, Ragnar_Rahl wrote:
If it is semantic-- so what? You say state is part of the market-- your whole topic is contingent on what market means. If you're wrong on that, this thread is useless and incoherent.

Yes, it's all a but redundant pointing out semantics, isn't it? Well, no, not really. The point you made inferring the meaning of a "market" was irrelevant to the point so the semantic usage was really just a red herring. Pointing out the semantics pointed out the red herring, or at least it should have.

I said the state was a part of the free market. You arbitrated the meaning of "market" and simply established that, if my arguments about the market creating a monopoly on force remain, the state remains separate from the market but the market has simply become self-refuting.

You haven't said a thing.
GRAND POOBAH OF DDO

fnord
Ragnar_Rahl
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8/14/2011 2:45:10 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 8/14/2011 2:34:18 AM, FREEDO wrote:
At 8/14/2011 2:15:19 AM, Ragnar_Rahl wrote:
If it is semantic-- so what? You say state is part of the market-- your whole topic is contingent on what market means. If you're wrong on that, this thread is useless and incoherent.

Yes, it's all a but redundant pointing out semantics, isn't it? Well, no, not really. The point you made inferring the meaning of a "market" was irrelevant to the point so the semantic usage was really just a red herring. Pointing out the semantics pointed out the red herring, or at least it should have.
Bare assertion about red herring.


I said the state was a part of the free market. You arbitrated the meaning of "market" and simply established that, if my arguments about the market creating a monopoly on force remain, the state remains separate from the market but the market has simply become self-refuting.
How so?

I don't recall establishing anything of the sort.

You seem to be making stuff up.


You haven't said a thing.
Contradicts your earlier statement.
It came to be at its height. It was commanded to command. It was a capital before its first stone was laid. It was a monument to the spirit of man.
TheAtheistAllegiance
Posts: 1,251
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8/14/2011 7:13:16 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
The two main arguments, I believe, are that violence is more expensive and impractical than trade, and consumers wouldn't want to purchase services from a defense agency that has a bad reputation, thus any firm acting in such ways will go bankrupt.

I see the first argument as having a lot of weight to it, while the latter not so much. Walmart, McDonald's, and a number of other companies have crappy reputations, but in the end, it's Walmart that's selling the cheapest goods, so they're the ones to expand. The same would likely apply to any defense agency operating under similar circumstances.

But, if defense agencies are in some kind of spat, they would likely go to a third party arbitrator, as most companies do now, and resolve the manner in a peaceful way - the only difference would be that the courts are private rather than public. I mean, getting into a mini-war is really the last thing anyone wants to do, especially if their own lives and profits are at stake.

But, that's all kind of aside from your main point. The problem is what Ragnar pointed out - primitive forms of government simply predate markets, just as Monarchies predate democracies. Plenty of people made the argument that if democracy worked, it would exist, but it didn't for the most part until, what - 80 years ago, or so?

Just my thoughts anyway...
Wnope
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8/14/2011 9:08:04 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 8/14/2011 1:00:06 AM, FREEDO wrote:
It has recently occurred to me that the line drawn between the government and the free market is much more arbitrary than is commonly expressed.

Free Marketeers(AnCaps) seem to go on about the workings of the market and how it would go forth with it's functions in the absence of the state. But what if that's simply beside the point? If all these perfect market pressures that seem to theoretically balance things so well really worked, why didn't it prevent the invention of a state to begin with? Is a Capitalist in need of conceding that this is the only one true market failure? Surely, if the market really is so perfect then this one failure is quite a doozy because it just undoes everything. The workings of the market completely fall apart due to this.

But what if that was no failure at all? In-fact, what if it is the natural way of things? What if I ask too many rhetorical questions? Nevermind that last one.

In a pure market, the choice of committing violence is met with certain market pressures. Naturally, at times, the pressures will allow it. According to AnCaps' own theories, there are those who make their very living off the fact. These "private defense agencies" are payed by those who want protection for their property as well as threat of violence, all BY threat of violence.

Here is where the problem begins. Who is to say that the agency has no right to use violence against whomever they wish if they have the might? Certainly not a state. They are making the economic risk, aren't they? Might is right. If someone is uninsured with defense, they are fair game. It was their chose not to be insured. Perhaps they are insured but it's by a small agency. Any large agency could over power it. Perhaps you may say that no one would pay such a barbaric agency for their services. What if these raids against smaller agencies mean more revenue? Revenue that would lower prices, almost to nothing. Is the whole theory not founded on self-interest? Certainly people would pay for such cheap and powerful service.

Here is where the problem comes to fruition. Who in their right mind would buy from any agency which is small and expensive as opposed to powerful and cheap? No one. And just what does that mean? You have figured out what I am getting at, you're no fool(well, not most of you, at least not in this sense). The very definition of a state is a monopoly on force. And this is precisely what is created out of market pressures.

They say we need to return to the free market. The truth is, we have never left it. The only way the market could stop being free is if it became coerced by something completely removed from it( a god, etc).

It doesn't even end here. This is only one aspect of the market. Only defense agencies becoming monopolized. Though it is for a different discussion, I could very well make a similar case for the natural monopolization of EVERYTHING. Ultimately leading to Fascism.

I rest my case.

Welcome to the jungle.
TheBaldKnobbers
Posts: 92
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8/16/2011 12:05:31 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 8/14/2011 1:00:06 AM, FREEDO wrote:
It has recently occurred to me that the line drawn between the government and the free market is much more arbitrary than is commonly expressed.

Free Marketeers(AnCaps) seem to go on about the workings of the market and how it would go forth with it's functions in the absence of the state. But what if that's simply beside the point? If all these perfect market pressures that seem to theoretically balance things so well really worked, why didn't it prevent the invention of a state to begin with? Is a Capitalist in need of conceding that this is the only one true market failure? Surely, if the market really is so perfect then this one failure is quite a doozy because it just undoes everything. The workings of the market completely fall apart due to this.

But what if that was no failure at all? In-fact, what if it is the natural way of things? What if I ask too many rhetorical questions? Nevermind that last one.

In a pure market, the choice of committing violence is met with certain market pressures. Naturally, at times, the pressures will allow it. According to AnCaps' own theories, there are those who make their very living off the fact. These "private defense agencies" are payed by those who want protection for their property as well as threat of violence, all BY threat of violence.

Here is where the problem begins. Who is to say that the agency has no right to use violence against whomever they wish if they have the might? Certainly not a state. They are making the economic risk, aren't they? Might is right. If someone is uninsured with defense, they are fair game. It was their chose not to be insured. Perhaps they are insured but it's by a small agency. Any large agency could over power it. Perhaps you may say that no one would pay such a barbaric agency for their services. What if these raids against smaller agencies mean more revenue? Revenue that would lower prices, almost to nothing. Is the whole theory not founded on self-interest? Certainly people would pay for such cheap and powerful service.

Here is where the problem comes to fruition. Who in their right mind would buy from any agency which is small and expensive as opposed to powerful and cheap? No one. And just what does that mean? You have figured out what I am getting at, you're no fool(well, not most of you, at least not in this sense). The very definition of a state is a monopoly on force. And this is precisely what is created out of market pressures.

They say we need to return to the free market. The truth is, we have never left it. The only way the market could stop being free is if it became coerced by something completely removed from it( a god, etc).

It doesn't even end here. This is only one aspect of the market. Only defense agencies becoming monopolized. Though it is for a different discussion, I could very well make a similar case for the natural monopolization of EVERYTHING. Ultimately leading to Fascism.

I rest my case.

And to think I thought that perfect competition led to zero profits, cheaper goods, new technology. Apparently I'm batshitt insane because for some reason i should be seeing one corporation, inefficient modes of production and massive waste *looks around and espies a post office* oh there it is.

I rest my case.
Wnope
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8/16/2011 7:21:37 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 8/16/2011 12:05:31 AM, TheBaldKnobbers wrote:
And to think I thought that perfect competition led to zero profits, cheaper goods, new technology. Apparently I'm batshitt insane because for some reason i should be seeing one corporation, inefficient modes of production and massive waste *looks around and espies a post office* oh there it is.

I rest my case.

You're not batshit insane, just inundated with undergrad neoclassical economics.

"Competition" occurs within a system of enforcement. The movement of price and demand is partially dependent on the governmental infrastructure around.

For instance, an economy that allows over-leveraged trading in non-priceable derivatives as form of reserve would end up in a very different situation from an economy where bank reserves must be actual capital.

In a village of traders, the deals and compacts they make will depend on the local government's customs for trade. One independent tribe's system of trade with another tribe can change the effects of price and demand.

The OP is making a fairly basic point about the inability to separate a market from the political infrastructure that shapes markets.
Wnope
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8/16/2011 7:22:41 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 8/16/2011 7:21:37 PM, Wnope wrote:
At 8/16/2011 12:05:31 AM, TheBaldKnobbers wrote:
And to think I thought that perfect competition led to zero profits, cheaper goods, new technology. Apparently I'm batshitt insane because for some reason i should be seeing one corporation, inefficient modes of production and massive waste *looks around and espies a post office* oh there it is.

I rest my case.

You're not batshit insane, just inundated with undergrad neoclassical economics.

"Competition" occurs within a system of enforcement. The movement of price and demand is partially dependent on the governmental infrastructure around.

For instance, an economy that allows over-leveraged trading in non-priceable derivatives as form of reserve would end up in a very different situation from an economy where bank reserves must be actual capital.

In a village of traders, the deals and compacts they make will depend on the local government's customs for trade. One independent tribe's system of trade with another tribe can change the effects of price and demand.

The OP is making a fairly basic point about the inability to separate a market from the political infrastructure that shapes markets.

As the OP says:

"They say we need to return to the free market. The truth is, we have never left it."
Cerebral_Narcissist
Posts: 10,806
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8/17/2011 1:28:59 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
The market rests upon the state, but an-caps don't understand that.
I am voting for Innomen because of his intelligence, common sense, humility and the fact that Juggle appears to listen to him. Any other Presidential style would have a large sub-section of the site up in arms. If I was President I would destroy the site though elitism, others would let it run riot. Innomen represents a middle way that works, neither draconian nor anarchic and that is the only way things can work. Plus he does it all without ego trips.
Ore_Ele
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8/17/2011 2:10:06 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
I have constantly said that companies (and anything form of competeing entities really), don't like competition. And as markets grow and form, companies will naturally eliminate their competition (sometimes through better products, sometimes through false advertising, sometime through plain underhanded tactics), until their are fewer and fewer left. Ultimately, companies want (like everything) the most reward for the least effort. In their case, the "reward" is money, and the "effort" is competition.

So it is only natural that when applied to defense companies, they'll eventually reach monopolies (though they don't really have that, you have other nations to choose from). Though more likely, they'll reach trusts, where they agree to stop competing and just make money.
"Wanting Red Rhino Pill to have gender"
TheAtheistAllegiance
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8/17/2011 2:20:42 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 8/17/2011 2:10:06 PM, Ore_Ele wrote:
I have constantly said that companies (and anything form of competeing entities really), don't like competition. And as markets grow and form, companies will naturally eliminate their competition (sometimes through better products, sometimes through false advertising, sometime through plain underhanded tactics), until their are fewer and fewer left. Ultimately, companies want (like everything) the most reward for the least effort. In their case, the "reward" is money, and the "effort" is competition.

So it is only natural that when applied to defense companies, they'll eventually reach monopolies (though they don't really have that, you have other nations to choose from). Though more likely, they'll reach trusts, where they agree to stop competing and just make money.

Well, there's still a fine line between that and our current system of government. IF these defense companies are operating within a mostly Capitalist framework, then they won't be accruing their resources through institutionalized theft.

Plus, I have my doubts about the repercussions of monopolies. I'm sure that, when considering capital costs, barriers to entry, economies of scale and whatnot, oligopolies would certainly form in the security industry, but unless that is used as a gateway for aggression and theft, thus forming a new state, there's only going to be a certain degree to which these companies can screw their consumers due to the ever-present threat of [possible] competition.
Ore_Ele
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8/17/2011 3:04:51 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 8/17/2011 2:20:42 PM, TheAtheistAllegiance wrote:
At 8/17/2011 2:10:06 PM, Ore_Ele wrote:
I have constantly said that companies (and anything form of competeing entities really), don't like competition. And as markets grow and form, companies will naturally eliminate their competition (sometimes through better products, sometimes through false advertising, sometime through plain underhanded tactics), until their are fewer and fewer left. Ultimately, companies want (like everything) the most reward for the least effort. In their case, the "reward" is money, and the "effort" is competition.

So it is only natural that when applied to defense companies, they'll eventually reach monopolies (though they don't really have that, you have other nations to choose from). Though more likely, they'll reach trusts, where they agree to stop competing and just make money.

Well, there's still a fine line between that and our current system of government. IF these defense companies are operating within a mostly Capitalist framework, then they won't be accruing their resources through institutionalized theft.

Plus, I have my doubts about the repercussions of monopolies. I'm sure that, when considering capital costs, barriers to entry, economies of scale and whatnot, oligopolies would certainly form in the security industry, but unless that is used as a gateway for aggression and theft, thus forming a new state, there's only going to be a certain degree to which these companies can screw their consumers due to the ever-present threat of [possible] competition.

There is current competition though, other states. Complaining that the US has a monopoly on force is like walking into a Gap store and complaining that the Gap has a monopoly. You can get other products, but you have to travel to a different store. Likewise, if you don't like the US, you can travel to a different nation. If you think all nations suck, you can start your own out in the middle of the ocean.
"Wanting Red Rhino Pill to have gender"
TheAtheistAllegiance
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8/17/2011 3:52:00 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 8/17/2011 3:04:51 PM, Ore_Ele wrote:
At 8/17/2011 2:20:42 PM, TheAtheistAllegiance wrote:

Well, there's still a fine line between that and our current system of government. IF these defense companies are operating within a mostly Capitalist framework, then they won't be accruing their resources through institutionalized theft.

Plus, I have my doubts about the repercussions of monopolies. I'm sure that, when considering capital costs, barriers to entry, economies of scale and whatnot, oligopolies would certainly form in the security industry, but unless that is used as a gateway for aggression and theft, thus forming a new state, there's only going to be a certain degree to which these companies can screw their consumers due to the ever-present threat of [possible] competition.

There is current competition though, other states. Complaining that the US has a monopoly on force is like walking into a Gap store and complaining that the Gap has a monopoly. You can get other products, but you have to travel to a different store. Likewise, if you don't like the US, you can travel to a different nation. If you think all nations suck, you can start your own out in the middle of the ocean.

I'm saying that Capitalistic monopolies are unrealistic for the most part.

But, states are still monopolies because they have supreme rule over the geographic area which they preside. Unlike with Capitalism, private legal institutions are not allowed to compete with the state's rule of law, courts, military, currency, etc - that's the difference. A government doesn't have to rule the whole universe to ban competition within its general vicinity, thus creating a monopoly.
Ore_Ele
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8/17/2011 4:20:22 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 8/17/2011 3:52:00 PM, TheAtheistAllegiance wrote:
At 8/17/2011 3:04:51 PM, Ore_Ele wrote:
At 8/17/2011 2:20:42 PM, TheAtheistAllegiance wrote:

Well, there's still a fine line between that and our current system of government. IF these defense companies are operating within a mostly Capitalist framework, then they won't be accruing their resources through institutionalized theft.

Plus, I have my doubts about the repercussions of monopolies. I'm sure that, when considering capital costs, barriers to entry, economies of scale and whatnot, oligopolies would certainly form in the security industry, but unless that is used as a gateway for aggression and theft, thus forming a new state, there's only going to be a certain degree to which these companies can screw their consumers due to the ever-present threat of [possible] competition.

There is current competition though, other states. Complaining that the US has a monopoly on force is like walking into a Gap store and complaining that the Gap has a monopoly. You can get other products, but you have to travel to a different store. Likewise, if you don't like the US, you can travel to a different nation. If you think all nations suck, you can start your own out in the middle of the ocean.

I'm saying that Capitalistic monopolies are unrealistic for the most part.

But, states are still monopolies because they have supreme rule over the geographic area which they preside. Unlike with Capitalism, private legal institutions are not allowed to compete with the state's rule of law, courts, military, currency, etc - that's the difference. A government doesn't have to rule the whole universe to ban competition within its general vicinity, thus creating a monopoly.

The Gap has a monopoly within the walls of its own store. Do you have a problem with that? Should the Gap be forced to allow competitors to be offered in their own store?

You're applying two different definitions of monopoly for government and for companies.
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TheAtheistAllegiance
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8/17/2011 5:54:02 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 8/17/2011 4:20:22 PM, Ore_Ele wrote:
At 8/17/2011 3:52:00 PM, TheAtheistAllegiance wrote:

I'm saying that Capitalistic monopolies are unrealistic for the most part.

But, states are still monopolies because they have supreme rule over the geographic area which they preside. Unlike with Capitalism, private legal institutions are not allowed to compete with the state's rule of law, courts, military, currency, etc - that's the difference. A government doesn't have to rule the whole universe to ban competition within its general vicinity, thus creating a monopoly.

The Gap has a monopoly within the walls of its own store. Do you have a problem with that? Should the Gap be forced to allow competitors to be offered in their own store?

You're applying two different definitions of monopoly for government and for companies.

No, I'm not.

The key difference is taking into account property. The Gap is using property they own in a non-aggressive manner - negative rights - they don't have to allow me to open a clothing store within the walls of their building. However, I can open a clothing store on my own property, just ten miles down the road. On the other hand, if I open up my own pot shop or start my own currency, the federal government will shut me down, thus effectively enforcing a monopoly.

Also, the property doesn't have to be "legitimate" for all of this to make sense. People naturally work within a system of private property simply because it's efficient and practical, and given those common standards, the state's actions do fall under the definition of an aggressive monopoly, while The Gap's do not.
DaveElectric
Posts: 107
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8/20/2011 4:34:08 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
"If all these perfect market pressures that seem to theoretically balance things so well really worked, why didn't it prevent the invention of a state to begin with?"

Becuase humans are not ultra-rational, profit maximizing homo economus entities. "Market pressures" are not the only pressures on society.
DaveElectric
Posts: 107
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8/20/2011 4:44:56 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
Alot of your points here assume that consumers are homo economus when clearly we are not. People have moral sensations and when they strive for power they always attempt to justify it with morality. I think this pretty much refutes every arguement you just made.
FREEDO
Posts: 21,057
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8/26/2011 9:35:34 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
So, Dave, if these other pressures are enough to demise the sustainment of a free-market, why are they not enough to destroy the very credibility of a free-market functioning at all? I'm assuming that you're a free-marketier.
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fnord