Just to remind you why Right-"libertarianism" is intellectually bankrupt

Quoth Walter Brock [pdf]

“Consider the sexual harassment which continually occurs between a secretary and a boss . . . while objectionable to many women, [it] is not a coercive action. It is rather part of a package deal in which the secretary agrees to all aspects of the job when she agrees to accept the job, and especially when she agrees to keep the job. The office is, after all, private property. The secretary does not have to remain if the ‘coercion’ is objectionable.”

Lame as always.

On a brighter side, here’s why you should check up on Voltairine De Cleyre. Feminist, Syndicalist, Anarchist without adjectives.

25 thoughts on “Just to remind you why Right-"libertarianism" is intellectually bankrupt

  1. "The office is, after all, private property. The secretary does not have to remain if the ‘coercion’ is objectionable.”

    Of course she doesn't. She can quit and live in poverty, perhaps even live on the streets. And her family? She can take them with her to help her beg strangers for spare change. [/sarcasm]

    Some people are so vile.

    1. It’s not just one person Mattmon, Rothbard made similar remarks on women in his rant against egalitarianism. Unfortunately, it’s the common occurrence of such misguided thinking that points to the intellectual bankruptcy of right-“libertarianism” and the sad fact that if you do take this ideology to its natural conclusions, you do really end up with propositions such as allowed human slavery (people selling themselves into it or debt-slavery), racism (“freedom of association”), and allowance of abuse, such as the quote above.

  2. So all I need to do to prove 'communists are intellectually bankrupt' is find one instance of a communist being an idiot?

    As for this quotation, I suspect the point Block might be trying to make is that something similar to sexual harassment is not a rights violation if both parties agree to it, but as far as I'm concerned agreement must be explicit and there must be no element of coercion which is not the case today.

    Block seems to assume that there is a free market in labour, something which there clearly is not when you factor in the aggression of the state on behalf of the capitalist. If there were a truly freed market then opportunity for labour would be far higher, either to work for another or to support themselves in another manner (ie non-wage labour). In that case I'd argue that anyone who wished to hire a secretary to sexually harass would be forced to get permission from them since they really could walk out without too great a penalty (I also hope that a freed legal system would support the secretary in any legal action).
    I actually hope that nobody would submit to this, I find it distasteful, but at this point I see no reason to prevent it (I suppose its just another form of prostitution).

    As things stand Buffy is 100% correct, most people cannot afford to do that, and that is due to rights violations which go contrary to libertarian principles. unfortunately many right-liberatarians do not see this, probably for cultural reasons (and this is very very frustrating).
    This does not falsify libertarian theory in its totality, just some particular applications.

    1. You are not disputing Block, you are agreeing with him but simply maintain that in a perfect society where people did not have to work for capitalist bosses if they didn't want to, sexual harassment wouldn't happen, and if it did, it would have obviously been "voluntary".

      Furthermore, your whole argument rests on the idea that a Free Labour market will clear. That is not the case. The labour market does not clear. Under conditions of full employment, the system goes into crisis (as is what happened in the end of the '60s) as capitalists cannot threaten workers with unemployment and thus the rate of profit drops.

      So in the end, you have not actually shown how right-"libertarian" theory is not bankrupt, you just apologized for it.

    2. So all I need to do to prove 'communists are intellectually bankrupt' is find one instance of a communist being an idiot?

      it's not that what one person says is idiotic. It's that the idiotic thing they say is a natural conclusion of their ideology where if one wishes to stay consistent with, they must reach as well. This is the intellectual bankruptcy.

  3. WHAT THE FUCK

    When I was an ancap, I used to admire Walter Block for his work on private roads, but nowadays he just seems like another crazy to me.

  4. "Block seems to assume that there is a free market in labour, something which there clearly is not when you factor in the aggression of the state on behalf of the capitalist. If there were a truly freed market then opportunity for labour would be far higher, either to work for another or to support themselves in another manner (ie non-wage labour). In that case I'd argue that anyone who wished to hire a secretary to sexually harass would be forced to get permission from them since they really could walk out without too great a penalty (I also hope that a freed legal system would support the secretary in any legal action)."

    Maybe this is applicable to the concept of "volountaryist hierarchy" but in the case of a sexual harassment, it's an agression and this is not applicable.

  5. The burden is on you people who disagree with Block to explain why, with a logical sound base. Labeling him insane and "right-wing" will not win you this argument.

    1. Sometimes one does not need to fight the most insane opponents. We can let common sense make the case for us in the minds of most people.

  6. i'm curious to know if we are to seriously "Consider the sexual harassment which continually occurs", will we arrive at different conclusions. what is "sexual harassment"? and in particular, what the type is Block considering? he most certainly did not say all "sexual harassment". even if one takes the notion that any type of "sexual harassment" constitutes an idea or sense of (illegitimate?) "ownership" in the alleged "aggressors" mind, what then is the proper or proportional response? how does this apply in any specific way to the workplace? would it not apply anywhere at anytime?

    1. You cannot take away the external circumstances of the harassment and simply see that it occurs "continually". One needs to ask, "if that woman thinks she's being harassed, then why doesn't she leave?". The answer would quickly become obvious in that there is external pressure for her to keep the job and put up with any harassment for to not do so might bring her into destitution or a worse fate than this.

  7. "Of course she doesn't. She can quit and live in poverty"

    Hahaha…….. socialists a re so dumb

  8. db0: I keep putting up examples of ancap principles taken to their logical conclusion and ask the ancaps to refute what is presented. They seem utterly incapable of doing so. They usually tell me that they disagree with the conclusion, without saying why they think the progression is faulty. Have you ever gotten any of them to actually try to deal with the progression presented, or do they always ignore it?

    1. The best I've achieved is to get them to tell me they'll try to think of a counter. I guess that's the best one can hope for in a discussion online.

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