Two Cents

    Two Cents –

  • On Critical Race Theory

    Post by Skyler J. Collins (Editor).

    As if I needed another reason to keep my children out of government schools, Critical Race Theory seems to be creeping up everywhere. I could be wrong, but everything I’ve seen and read about Critical Race Theory (and Woke-ism) leads me to believe that at it is fundamentally about making so-called “White” people feel ashamed of the color of their skin. Yes, I think that’s right. Imagine a program designed to make Black people feel ashamed of the color of their skin… perhaps a program that disapprovingly highlights crimes and vices committed by Black people and aimed primarily at making Black people, adults and children, view their skin color as a major contributing factor to these very bad behaviors and their devastating consequences on society. Wouldn’t we reasonable, and rightly, categorize such a program as racist? Judging people or making them feel ashamed due to either their skin color or genetic ancestry is one of the primary weapons of White Supremacists. Those espousing Critical Race Theory are essentially conceding to White Supremacists the superiority of their emphasis on “race” and what it says about individuals. Disgusting, if you ask me, and that’s today’s two cents.

  • On George Floyd and Derek Chauvin

    Post by Skyler J. Collins (Editor).

    The Derek Chauvin trial was an example of authoritarian in-fighting. Had “the system” actually been interested in justice, George Floyd would never have had a broken home, childhood trauma, and drug addiction problem, the police would never have responded to an allegation of a counterfeit $20 bill, Derek Chauvin would never have violently interfered with George Floyd’s life that day, society would never have been coercively handcuffed from keeping the peace and preventing riots and the destruction of many a small business and private property, and Chauvin’s guilty verdict would never mean that other people are coerced to pay for decades of incarceration. Just about every step of the way, authoritarianism set society up to fail, and for justice to be totally sucked out of the airlock. But as we all must know, authoritarians aren’t really concerned about justice, but in lining their own pockets from the blood and sweat of the rest of us. And that’s today’s two cents.

  • On Socialism II

    Post by Skyler J. Collins (Editor).

    David Friedman had another debate on capitalism and socialism last month, this one with Ben Burgis. They didn’t really cover any new ground, and the discussion period was a total disaster; viewer beware. However, Friedman leveled the poignant question to Burgis on what would happen to he and his friends if they practiced capitalism (one of them hiring the others for a wage) under his socialist system. Predictably, Burgis kept dodging the question. If Burgis would have conceded that they’d be left alone, then his entire system falls apart. Capitalism, no doubt, would spread like a virus as more people than not would prefer present consumption to future consumption. There just wouldn’t be enough scrimpers and savers to make for business builders. Too many would prefer to be paid an immediate flat wage now and forego company equity. And guess what… that’s totally fine! We’re all different, and we have different time preferences, and at different periods of our lives. Capitalism allows for such dynamism, socialism does not. And that’s today’s two cents.

  • On Racism

    Post by Skyler J. Collins (Editor).

    I just read a fantastic essay from 2017 on racism at Slate Star Codex titled, “Against Murderism“. I highly recommend it and was intellectually tickled by how it ended. The too long; didn’t read conclusion was: even when real racism is present, it’s still likely just a branch, and understanding the root issue is far more important if we are to ever solve any real problems and avoid civil war. In other words, crying “Racism!” is low-IQ and lazy, and says nothing about the real problems that plague society, and humanity. I’m probably guilty in a similar fashion by decrying “Authoritarianism!” all the time, as even that is a branch relative to the, ostensibly, root problem of hitting and traumatizing children. And that’s today’s two cents.

  • On Individualism

    Post by Skyler J. Collins (Editor).

    I’m reading a terrific anthology of individualist thought edited by George H. Smith and Marilyn Moore. One essay was excerpted from Oscar Wilde and focuses on individualism being the least selfish among alternatives. Let me put it this way: I am an individualist first, voluntaryist second. I would prefer that everyone else be a voluntaryist as far as their politics are concerned, but I wouldn’t coerce them to it. If they want to be socialist, that’s fine, be socialist and enjoy your socialist utopia. I will respect your individuality by respecting your individual values and preferences. All I ask in return is that you respect my individuality as well. Can you do that? Can you also be an individualist first, and socialist, or communist, or fascist, or Republican, or Democrat second? Or must you disrespect my individuality by coercing me to accept your values and preferences? Are you truly so selfish (and greedy!) that you insist on coercing others to adopt your ideology? For shame! And that’s today’s two cents.

  • On Exploitation

    Post by Skyler J. Collins (Editor).

    There’s a very simple test you can apply to determine whether or not a market transaction is exploitative: If the transaction is made voluntarily and offers a better alternative to the parties involved, the transaction is not exploitative; If the transaction is made coercively and offers a worse alternative to one of the parties involved, the transaction is exploitative. In every instance, if neither party is coercing the other, then there’s no exploitation. Of course, coercion may not always be direct, eg. a company might be paying or otherwise influencing the local, legal mafia (the “government”) to diminish or completely remove alternatives for the other party. (Parents may even coerce their children into market transactions, thereby exploiting them.) Nothing else matters to this very important question. Just because you have better alternatives, that doesn’t make an unimpressive market transaction exploitative. By all means create better alternatives if you think someone could get a better deal, but the moment you engage in coercion is the moment you yourself become the bad guy. Never forget that, and that’s today’s two cents.

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