Myth of the Tyranny of the Majority


SoAMadDeathWish

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Now, all A has to do is make the following offer, "If anyone proposes a tax bill, and the bill succeeds, then I will give an additional dollar to the one who didn't propose it." Since each of the envious parasites would like to be the one to get the additional dollar, neither of them wants to be the one to propose the bill. Therefore, the bill is never proposed, and A never has to pay anyone anything.

I just have to jump in here. I haven't caught up on the reading yet, but you've made this claim on multiple occasions and it just doesn't hold up under scrutiny.

You're making the same error that you made before. You assert that B and C will behave in a certain way, the supposedly rational way, and then conclude that B and C will fail to get what they want by acting by acting in their own self interest. (Here, I use the term "self interest" in a non-objectivist way, ignoring whether it is really in someone's self interest to live at someone else's expense.)

B and C simply won't take the offer. They know that the only way for them to succeed in getting money from A is by sticking together. So, just offering one slightly more than he would get otherwise won't sway him from his original path. Both B and C know they'll get a certain payoff by voting together, they don't know that A will make good on his offer, and they know they must stick together in order to get anything, so they'll just take what they can get by taxing A and ignore A's offer.

I hate to burst your bubble, but this whole conversation is pointless because the OP is flawed. Person A cannot bribe his way out of paying taxes. That doesn't mean I think the conversation is useless. People have made a number of good points on here. In particular, Francisco made the powerful point that simply taking a cynical approach and accepting taxation does nothing to advance the cause of freedom.

Darrell

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Now, all A has to do is make the following offer, "If anyone proposes a tax bill, and the bill succeeds, then I will give an additional dollar to the one who didn't propose it." Since each of the envious parasites would like to be the one to get the additional dollar, neither of them wants to be the one to propose the bill. Therefore, the bill is never proposed, and A never has to pay anyone anything.

I just have to jump in here. I haven't caught up on the reading yet, but you've made this claim on multiple occasions and it just doesn't hold up under scrutiny.

You're making the same error that you made before. You assert that B and C will behave in a certain way, the supposedly rational way, and then conclude that B and C will fail to get what they want by acting by acting in their own self interest. (Here, I use the term "self interest" in a non-objectivist way, ignoring whether it is really in someone's self interest to live at someone else's expense.)

B and C simply won't take the offer. They know that the only way for them to succeed in getting money from A is by sticking together. So, just offering one slightly more than he would get otherwise won't sway him from his original path. Both B and C know they'll get a certain payoff by voting together, they don't know that A will make good on his offer, and they know they must stick together in order to get anything, so they'll just take what they can get by taxing A and ignore A's offer.

I hate to burst your bubble, but this whole conversation is pointless because the OP is flawed. Person A cannot bribe his way out of paying taxes. That doesn't mean I think the conversation is useless. People have made a number of good points on here. In particular, Francisco made the powerful point that simply taking a cynical approach and accepting taxation does nothing to advance the cause of freedom.

Darrell

Darrell, I was hoping you would bring this up.

First of all, I just want to clear up one thing. This plan will work for A since his promise to pay is assumed to be credible (let's say he makes an enforceable contract with B and C).

However, if B and C can also make credible promises to each other, only then can they beat A.

What this is intended to illustrate is that a disorganized majority (B and C each working alone) is powerless before an organized minority (A). B and C did have de facto control over a state with arbitrary power, but that is not enough to exploit A. Organization then, not force, is the source of power.

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whYNOT

If any system CAN be slanted in your favor, it WILL be slanted against you, by other people - just as easily, and probably irrevocably. "Might is right" has been your constant inference - heh, only for the few minutes you may happen to have it. Just don't squeal when others have power over your life.

I can accept this reality. Bad news for you, running away from this fact won't make it go away.

I will believe you "can accept this reality" if I could believe you know 'the reality'. In your theoretical ivory tower, 'power' must look so easy. But power is force. I doubt that in your long experience you've seen bodies in the streets and smelled them. Or is it something foreign to you, that can only happen "over there"? Principles are the same everywhere.

But let's assume that you truthfully believe you are stoical enough to handle the vicissitudes of power constantly changing one day for you, the next against you.

a. What makes you think this would not be an intolerable existence to genuine freedom-seeking people?

b. Is this the legacy - existing in such uncertainty and sly deal-broking - you would wish upon your future children?

IOW, it's time to climb out of your cosy cocoon; perhaps see life as it means to other people, i.e. mankind.

Not "A"- "B"- "C" algebra.

I don't think you understand power/force at all, but one does not have to see bodies to imagine the consequences of immoral, impractical principles- also I am beginning to think that you subjectively presume you will personally be the wielder of power, never at its mercy.

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This will be my last post in the politics forum. If anyone wishes to discuss these ideas with me further, I ask that you PM me.

Good...I am sure you will have few pms [hmm pm s works].

Hopefully you will go away.

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Left with lofty ideas and no maths to make them work? What has politics come to?

Frankly, if she/he/alphabet had an original thought, it would die of lonliness...

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I'm not happy that I moderated Naomi. Doing this stuff messes with me inside.

I'm not Roark ("But I don't think of you"). I do think about this stuff and it interferes with my studies and my other writing. It's a pain in the ass and this episode spoiled my day. (It won't spoil it tomorrow, though.)

The fact is, the girl simply does not know anything about Rand, or if she does, she misrepresents Rand on purpose. In other words, either she can't or she won't discuss the ideas, while generally being wrong about what little she does say about them in a know-it-all tone. So what's the use having someone like that around as a source of constant irritation to the regulars? If it were a sporadic post or other, that would be one thing. But the volume of her posts shows belligerent ignorance in abundance with a preaching attitude to boot. Not as bad as that Eva/sockpuppet person, but still pretty darn stupid Rand-wise.

The problem with people like this is that they don't see themselves. They live imagining the world is the same as the small vision in their heads, pretending they are far more important than they actually are, and feeding an illusion that they are somehow above the people they deal with--as they seek out those very people so they can deal with them.

Nobody's banging down her door to request enlightenment. On the contrary, she's here.

Anyone at all can see that, except her.

A truly superior person moves on if he thinks the people in a place are so beneath him he needs to snark and posture all the time.

I want to make something clear, though. The moderation is not about her lack of knowledge or even lack of character (if it turns out that she is just being a jerk qua jerk). Even with the constant irritation of her getting things wrong, being belligerent about them, constantly moving the goal posts in arguments, etc., I would have given her some warnings first, like I always do, before acting.

The problem is that she gamed the forum software (specifically, she wrote hidden messages in some of her posts by using a font the same color as the background--now don't you folks start getting the same goddam idea :) ).

I need to examine what she has been doing, then plug the holes with a warning that if she insists on gaming the software, whether the way she has been doing or in other ways, the next time will result in a ban. This is a forum of ideas, not a kiddy fifth column video game.

I probably don't need to say this, but for those who think her moderation has something to do with her spat with Dennis, frankly I don't think there is any relationship between what he has done (like deleting his avatar) and his interaction with her. I doubt she is that much on his radar. Life happens and people often come and go due to personal circumstances. Dennis sure has come and gone several times. :smile:Due to my experience observing poster behavior over the years, I would wager that something in his life came up and taking care of it does not include what he does on OL.

He and I have never communicated offline, so I prefer to wait until Ellen gets in touch with him (like she said she would) to see what's going on. I do hope he's alright. To me, he's always been an esteemed, if sporadic, presence on OL.

Michael

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Brant,

You read it by highlighting the text on the page.

btw - I'm not too much against this if friendly people do it in jest. Like all jokes, they'll do it for a while, the jokes will be horsing around, then it will get old. (Remember the spoiler command? :) )

But for haughty snarky people who constantly bolster themselves up by putting OL members down, I don't want to have to read every damn post they make by highlighting it. The thing I don't want to host is hidden messages that are nothing but snarking against OL people and/or OL culture.

Michael

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Brant,

You read it by highlighting the text on the page.

btw - I'm not too much against this if friendly people do it in jest. Like all jokes, they'll do it for a while, the jokes will be horsing around, then it will get old. (Remember the spoiler command? :smile: )

But for haughty snarky people who constantly bolster themselves up by putting OL members down, I don't want to have to read every damn post they make by highlighting it. The thing I don't want to host is hidden messages that are nothing but snarking against OL people and/or OL culture.

Michael

It's hard to fathom the depths of that kind of cowardice.

What drives a person there? It obviously(love that word)isn't the strength of their position or convictions.

There must be a self-help book published somewhere for paternalistic megalomaniacs that is pushing self-therapy like that. (Who else would it be for????)

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Brant,

You read it by highlighting the text on the page.

btw - I'm not too much against this if friendly people do it in jest. Like all jokes, they'll do it for a while, the jokes will be horsing around, then it will get old. (Remember the spoiler command? :smile: )

But for haughty snarky people who constantly bolster themselves up by putting OL members down, I don't want to have to read every damn post they make by highlighting it. The thing I don't want to host is hidden messages that are nothing but snarking against OL people and/or OL culture.

Michael

It's hard to fathom the depths of that kind of cowardice.

What drives a person there? It obviously(love that word)isn't the strength of their position or convictions.

There must be a self-help book published somewhere for paternalistic megalomaniacs that is pushing self-therapy like that. (Who else would it be for????)

I need a link--badly. Help!

heh, heeh

--Brant

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I probably don't need to say this, but for those who think her moderation has something to do with her spat with Dennis, frankly I don't think there is any relationship between what he has done (like deleting his avatar) and his interaction with her. I doubt she is that much on his radar. Life happens and people often come and go due to personal circumstances. Dennis sure has come and gone several times. :smile:Due to my experience observing poster behavior over the years, I would wager that something in his life came up and taking care of it does not include what he does on OL.

He and I have never communicated offline, so I prefer to wait until Ellen gets in touch with him (like she said she would) to see what's going on. I do hope he's alright. To me, he's always been an esteemed, if sporadic, presence on OL.

Michael

There could be a relationship between Dennis' leaving and Naomi, just in the sense that he might not want to be bothered with replying to her.

I wrote to him today, didn't have time yesterday. I haven't gotten a reply yet.

Ellen

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I probably don't need to say this, but for those who think her moderation has something to do with her spat with Dennis, frankly I don't think there is any relationship between what he has done (like deleting his avatar) and his interaction with her. I doubt she is that much on his radar. Life happens and people often come and go due to personal circumstances. Dennis sure has come and gone several times. :smile:Due to my experience observing poster behavior over the years, I would wager that something in his life came up and taking care of it does not include what he does on OL.

He and I have never communicated offline, so I prefer to wait until Ellen gets in touch with him (like she said she would) to see what's going on. I do hope he's alright. To me, he's always been an esteemed, if sporadic, presence on OL.

Michael

There could be a relationship between Dennis' leaving and Naomi...

Ellen

No! You mean they left together...? Shocking, what goes on under our very eyes.

Scandalous behavior!

:smile:

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You can see it in my posts 287 and 290 here.

It's not Naomi's of course.

--Brant

didn't find anything that way by her in the first 140 posts on this thread

I don't see anything with different coloring, or a link, when I highlight those. Maybe whatever you did only shows on some browsers.

Ellen

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Thanks, Michael.

It still doesn't show up on my screen, maybe because I'm using an iPod. I'll try with a laptop.

--

Meanwhile, I heard from Dennis.

His finding snarky behavior "not a legitimate part of any intellectual conversation" is partly why he left, but partly the timing was coincidental - he has a possible business project coming up.

Ellen

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