You Don’t Have it in the First Place


Great questions.

—1) From where does a polity gain more rights or powers under Natural Law than the individual has in the first place?—

a) a right is a demand upon others. one does not intrinsically possess rights, one intrinsically requires them. Just as one does not intrinsically possess property he acquires it.

You can REQUIRE, and DEMAND others not impose costs upon your possessions, but you cannot possess property in fact, or property rights in fact, without a contract for those rights in some form, and a polity or institution to insure them on your behalf, and you on theirs. Else we would not have this discussion.

b) natural law provides decidability in matters of conflict regardless of the difference in opinions of the individuals in that conflict.

c) using decidability one can judicially discover and outlaw the new means of parasitism, and the new forms of property, that we consistently invent.

d) so regardless of initial presumptions the scope of our property rights can increase indefinitely under natural law regardless of the opinions of others (or ourselves). Ergo, under natural law, no matter what we expend our efforts and resources upon, we are able to convert it into property (exclusion of others from its use, taking, or consumption), as long as we do so without violating the exclusion others ask of us via reciprocity.

—“2) How is productivity quantified in your system of validation for voluntary agreements and their externalities?”—
a) preamble: i) possessions provide us with agency. ii) cooperation provides us with multipliers upon our agency. iii) it appears that we cannot compete (survive) without the agency provided by the transformation of personally insured possessions into cooperatively insured property. iv) And it is difficult to compete and survive without the agency provided by external cooperation (cooperation at scale via markets). v) ergo we must cooperate to produce property rights that provide us with agency, multipliers, and greater multipliers of the market. vi) and we must possess a means of decidability upon the scope of property to be insured (a property right), before we can cooperatively insure property.

b) conversely, i) humans retaliate against impositions of costs upon the investments they have made, in order to obtain an interest in some good, service, information, or association. ii) humans retaliate more severely than the original cost imposed upon them as a means of dissuading future such violations. iii) we evolved these behaviors precisely because of the necessity of cooperation in our survival, competition, and prospering, in relation to nature and the competition of other groups. iv) and we evolved the institutions of property, property rights, and law, to prevent cycles of retaliation (feuds) that were endemic to human groups prior to the invention of the prevention of retaliation by the institutions of property, property rights, and law. The law – our first ‘commons’ – evolved to preserve cooperation and the benefits of cooperation. v) and humans organize to embrace familial generosity, in-group reciprocity, and out group cooperation, competition, or war, by the importance of cooperation in each of those domains of action.

c) one cannot quantify changes in state only qualify changes in state – or we cannot yet do so with the instrumentation we have available to us today. And while we can qualify changes in state, we do not need to qualify, positive changes in state. We need only know if there have been negative changes in state – whether someone will retaliate. And those changes in state are limited to property in toto (demonstrated property – property in fact). That which we have obtained through homesteading, transformation of possessions, or exchange. And to prevent retaliation, we must limit ourselves to productive, fully informed, warrantied, voluntary exchanges limited to productive externalities.

d) because when we limit ourselves as such, no possible retaliation can be instigated. cooperation is preserved. the fruits of cooperation are preserved: possessions, property, property rights, and markets.

e) we do not choose the scope of property – others choose to invest their energies in obtaining interests by bringing changes in state of the universe into being through their actions. This interest serves to exclude you from imposition of costs upon that interest. And they choose to retaliate against impositions of costs upon them. So while we express via-positiva our necessity of a commons of property rights, the via negativa restatement of that demand, is that we seek to preserve cooperation and its fruits, by violating the terms of cooperation: the imposition of costs.


Curt Doolittle
The Propertarian Institute
Kiev, Ukraine

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