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From: R
Sent: Saturday, September 14, 2019 11:31 AM
To: Walter Block <wblock@loyno.edu>
Subject:

2 questions:

it is universally agreed (murray, rand, nozick, etc) that natural rights are moral claims (based on the conditions necessary for man to survive). i’ll accept that (becuase i believe that man has a specific nature).  but what i want to know is:

(1) why does man have natural rights but not animals?

(2) why should i base my actions on a moral claim?

Dear R:

These are very important questions you raise.

Animals do not have rights because they are not rational. See readings on this below.

Asking this: “why should i base my actions on a moral claim?” is like asking “why be rational?” or “Why be logical?” Pragmatically, because if you’re not, you’ll be unhappy, be scorned by others. Deontologically, it makes no sense to answer this, since, praxeologically, everyone should act morally.

As a libertarian, I really can’t answer the question you pose. But, I can answer this: why should I base my actions on a libertarian law? Again, I break this down into a similar response: Pragmatically, because if you’re not, you’ll be unhappy, be scorned by others. Deontologically, it makes no sense to answer this, since, praxeologically, everyone should act morally.

Here are some readings on these issues. I hope they are helpful.

Montgomery, Stephen and Walter E. Block. 2016. “Animal torture and thick libertarianism.” Review of Social and Economic Issues (RSEI), Vol. 1, No. 3, Spring, pp. 105-116. http://rsei.rau.ro/images/V1N3/Articol_5.pdf

Block, Walter E. and Steven Craig. 2017. “Animal torture.”  The Review of Social and Economic Issues (RSEI); http://rsei.rau.ro/index.php/lasthttp://rsei.rau.ro/index.php/10-published-issues/10-volume-1-number-4http://www.rebe.rau.ro/RePEc/rau/rseijr/SP16/RSEI-SP16-A5.pdfhttps://ideas.repec.org/a/rau/rseijr/v1y2017i4p82-95.html

Block, Walter W. 2013. “Interview.” September 10,. Michael Shanklin [mailto:shanklinmike@yahoo.com] lmr.radio Duke Boyne dukeboyne@hotmail.comshanklinmike@yahoo.comhttps://plus.google.com/hangouts/_/36d86793428dfcb299c3fbf640452d3ae1a62141?authuser=0;  http://youtu.be/qyYgGBBmjR8; liberty movement radio.com;

How Walter Block Became A Voluntaryist Libertarian: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JPkstrFj2NI. on Rand Paul and Political Action: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aD4AUslAaFU. full interview on Voluntary Virtues Radio 9/10/2013 Rand Paul, Bitcoin, Tragedy of the anticommons:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iUikrwcWXIw. on

Bitcoin:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=duDykrxwIxw. Video interviews: on Animal Rights & Untouched/NonHomesteaded Land.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HZt2Sz2UpLo. full interview on Triple-V: Inchoate Crimes, Political Action, Self-Defense: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XTfyC9YyhXk. “Obama & Bush Are War Criminals”, Hitmen, and Inchoate Crimes:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P4hyFyLsxY4;

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=duDykrxwIxw;

critique of wb on bitcoin: http://www.economicsofbitcoin.com/2013/09/professor-walter-block-is-clueless.html; Freedomforall Volunaryvirtues@gmail.com

Mercer, Ilana. http://www.wnd.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=37857.

Mercer, Ilana. 2004. “How much is that doggie in the window?” April 2.

http://www.wnd.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=37857

http://www.googlesyndicatedsearch.com/u/Mises?hl=en&submit.x=0&submit.y=0&q=animal%20rights

Rothbard, Murray.Ethics of Liberty chapter 21 the rights of animals: http://mises.org/rothbard/ethics/twentyone.asp

Rothbard, Murray. 2007. “The “Rights” of Animals.”

http://mises.org/daily/2581/

Wenzel, Robert. 2014. “Would Animals Have Rights In a Libertarian Society?.” January 18;

http://www.economicpolicyjournal.com/2014/01/would-animals-have-rights-i-libertarian.html

Singer, Peter defended consensual animal sex. Here’s a short video clip from an Australian current affairs/debate show where he does this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=veBr6bB-ISk

Singer, Peter. 1979. Practical Ethics, Cambridge; http://www.utilitarian.net/singer/by/1979—-.htm

I don’t exactly advertise it, but I also defended Michael Vick:

http://www.ilanamercer.com/phprunner/public_article_list_view.php?editid1=75

I &

http://www.ilanamercer.com/phprunner/public_article_list_view.php?editid1=74

II

This one is funny, at least:

http://wnd.ha-hosting.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=212697

Since writing these articles, I have become a “parront” to two remarkable parrots (one of whom has a larger vocabulary, used in context, than my next-door neighbor. T. Cup the parrot is also way sweeter).

Philosophically, the articles against rights for animals are correct. I have not changed my position, neither will I.

But that doesn’t means that a hardcore propertarian should not  try to educate others about ethical conduct toward animals, or about living and eating ethically. (The Hebrew Bible instructs us to feed our animals before we eat.)  Here are a few blog posts about voluntary, non-coercive ways to do so. Paul may find these helpful:

http://barelyablog.com/?p=32561

http://barelyablog.com/?p=40319

http://entertainment.timesonline.co.uk/tol/arts_and_entertainment/the_tls/article7047926.ece

Animal rights: animals:

Mercer, Ilana. http://www.wnd.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=37857.

Mercer, Ilana. 2004. “How much is that doggie in the window?” April 2.

http://www.wnd.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=37857

http://www.googlesyndicatedsearch.com/u/Mises?hl=en&submit.x=0&submit.y=0&q=animal%20rights

Rothbard, Murray.Ethics of Liberty chapter 21 the rights of animals: http://mises.org/rothbard/ethics/twentyone.asp

Rothbard, Murray. 2007. “The “Rights” of Animals.”

http://mises.org/daily/2581/

Singer, Peter defended consensual animal sex. Here’s a short video clip from an Australian current affairs/debate show where he does this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=veBr6bB-ISk

Singer, Peter. 1979. Practical Ethics, Cambridge; http://www.utilitarian.net/singer/by/1979—-.htm

I don’t exactly advertise it, but I also defended Michael Vick:

http://www.ilanamercer.com/phprunner/public_article_list_view.php?editid1=75

I &

http://www.ilanamercer.com/phprunner/public_article_list_view.php?editid1=74

II

This one is funny, at least:

http://wnd.ha-hosting.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=212697

Since writing these articles, I have become a “parront” to two remarkable parrots (one of whom has a larger vocabulary, used in context, than my next-door neighbor. T. Cup the parrot is also way sweeter).

Philosophically, the articles against rights for animals are correct. I have not changed my position, neither will I.

But that doesn’t means that a hardcore propertarian should not  try to educate others about ethical conduct toward animals, or about living and eating ethically. (The Hebrew Bible instructs us to feed our animals before we eat.)  Here are a few blog posts about voluntary, non-coercive ways to do so. Paul may find these helpful:

http://barelyablog.com/?p=32561

http://barelyablog.com/?p=40319

http://entertainment.timesonline.co.uk/tol/arts_and_entertainment/the_tls/article7047926.ece

Wenzel, Robert. 2014. “Would Animals Have Rights In a Libertarian Society?.” January 18; http://www.economicpolicyjournal.com/2014/01/would-animals-have-rights-i-libertarian.html

Best regards,

Walter

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3:58 am on October 6, 2019

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Market Failure in Policing?

From: N
Sent: Saturday, September 14, 2019 1:10 AM
To: Walter Block <wblock@loyno.edu>
Subject: Market Failure?

Dear Dr. Block,

In Minneapolis there has been a big uptick in crime due to a rising population along with cuts to the police force. Do you see this uptick as a market failure as no private security forces have come in to fill the gap? At what point in the crime rate do we have to say that the market has failed?

Dear Nathan:

My answer to this one is that this is not “market failure” rather, rising crime is government failure. It is difficult for private security forces to compete with government when the latter gives away the competitive product, protection, for free, even when they engage in reductions. They are still giving away for free this service of theirs.

An awful lot of crime can be traced to government prohibition of drugs, to the minimum wage law (creates unemployment for teens), and welfare (breaks up the family). These are all government, not market, failures. Would there still be crime in the free society? We libertarians are not unrealistic. Of course there would still be some, albeit greatly reduced. But, it would tend to be “optimal,” in the sense that the last dollar spent on crime prevention and punishment would be such that any more spent in this direction would garner less value than the costs associated with criminal behavior. And, the market wouldn’t be creating any crime, as does the government.

I abstract, here, from mentioning the greatest criminals besetting us: the government.

Best regards,

Walter

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2:39 am on October 4, 2019

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Profits Tend Toward Equality, At Zero

From: T
Sent: Tuesday, September 10, 2019 8:43 AM
To: wblock@loyno.edu
Subject: Tendency of profits of equalize across industries

Dear Dr Block:

Could you briefly explain what you mean by profits having a tendency equalize across industries in the economy?

Could you also please suggest any readings on this specific topic?

Thank you, T

Dear T:

Suppose there are three industries, A, B, and C. Profits in the first are 50%, in the second 10% and in the third, – 5%. Resources will flow toward A and away from C. This will lower profits in A and raise them in C. If the process continues long enough, and nothing else changes, and we ignore risk, eventually profits will be the same in all 3 industries: zero.

A good reading:

Hazlitt’s economics in one lesson.

Best regards,

Walter

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2:38 am on October 4, 2019

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From: J
Sent: Saturday, June 22, 2019 7:05 AM
To: wblock@loyno.edu
Subject: Bombing Iran

Dear Dr. Block,

I can’t convey how important such contributions as yours are, to getting the facts of these things out are.  I am a 2 decade retired Marine,

22 years out, and I went to training with Iranian military, at Millington, Tennessee, in 76-77.  Some folks would suggest I’m not a friendly guy, but in reality, I’m just focused on what I love, mechanics, technical work, I’ve been certain of my purpose in life, since age one, watching Spanish blacksmiths, reworking the stone mason’s tools, from dawn to dusk, building the stone structure apartment building next door.  I decided at one I would be that magician, and spent two years in Spain, then two in Italy, learning at the feet of the masons, getting enough theory of principles of architecture, geometry, and trig, taught with a plumb bob and a linen, measuring cord, relations, not numbers.

I found several mechs studying jet engines, who I got along well with and enjoyed the exchange of ideas, thoughts, foods, we were all young adults, not knowing the future, the past not a concern, the small niche in time such things didn’t matter at all.  I enjoyed that six or seven months, largely because I met so many different men, intent on becoming technicians of one of the dozen sorts, taught on that base, and for the most part, all with similar backgrounds and histories, we all played with design and making things, growing up, and it was those things that were most intriguing.

I’ve been angry with our government from the time we “broke the last straw”, and cause the dissent, because I knew and know, Iranians are good people, with a sound, reasonable culture, and it is entirely our belligerence that keeps us from being trade allies, at the very least.  I believe, if we would have similar relations with any trade nation, and no “special relations”, as we have, entirely irrationally, with Israel, we would never have developed such a powerful deep state, nor have caused so much destruction and death, to no positive outcome, not only in the mid-east, but in every war we’ve engaged since the last world war.

I expect you know the history of Iran, our “Declaration of Independence, and our Constitution”, and they establishing a federated republic, precisely on our principles, in 46, with Eisenhower allowing the CIA to break it, and install the Shah.

I am the son of a naval officer, the reason for growing up in Europe, and have grappled with these ideas all my life, moving four times before one, tends to make one aware of the world’s workings, from the earliest ages, and I got eye surgery, giving me back my left eye, months after arriving in Barcelona, where the eye surgeon who invented corrective surgery for “skew eye” practiced, immediately down the street from our apartment.  I got the surgery a few months past age one, 100% successful, 20-15 vision, left eye took dominance, and didn’t get glasses till I turned forty. One of the first, the youngest at the time, and likely the first American to get the surgery.

I credit growing up moving every year or two, as a substantial advantage today, while a significant challenge of the time, for my ability to “do just about whatever I want”, because I know so many people who could do so much, and probably never finished fifth grade, yet knew the secrets of the pyramids, how they were built, all the high science of structure, pressure, mass, volume, but most of all, trig.

I only wish I’d been able to get as close with Iranians as you had the fortune to be.

God Bless, you and yours,

Semper Fidelis,

J

GySgt, USMC, ret.

From: Walter Block <wblock@loyno.edu>

Sent: Monday, September 09, 2019 11:20 AM

To: J

Subject: RE: Bombing Iran

Dear J:

Thanks for your very lovely letter. It really pulls at the heartstrings. I have not met many Iranians, by I am very fond of the ones I have met. Here are my publications on this subject:

Block, Walter E. 2019. “Should We Nuke Iran?” June 22;

https://www.lewrockwell.com/2019/06/walter-e-block/should-we-nuke-iran/

Tehran Chamber of Commerce, Industries and Mines: http://www.tejaratnews.com/news/3591/default.aspxhttp://tccim.ir/spconv.aspx?id=1279http://tccim.ir/english/newsfullstory.aspx?nid=4344

reza tahmasebi [mailto:reza.tahmasebi.t@gmail.com]

Block, Walter E. 2007. “My Iranian Friend Houshang Memarzedeh.” February 6.

https://archive.lewrockwell.com/block/block73.html

Block, Walter E. 2012. “Closing Hormuz.” January 4;

https://archive.lewrockwell.com/block/block193.html

Block, Walter E. 2013. “Should We Hate Iran? Of course not.” March 13;

https://archive.lewrockwell.com/block/block220.html;

ایران هسته ای هم هیچ خطری برای دیگر کشورها ندارد

http://tejarat.donya-e-eqtesad.com/fa/packages/services/policy/stories/16015db3-31ef-4452-a57a-52f884d9f822

Walter Block Interview with Iranian magazine:

http://www.mehrnameh.ir/article/2772/%DA%A9%D9%8A%D9%86%D8%B2%D9%8A%D9%86%E2%80%8C%D9%87%D8%A7-%D9%88-%D9%BE%D8%B3%D8%B1%D8%A7%D9%86-%D8%B4%D9%8A%DA%A9%D8%A7%DA%AF%D9%88-%D8%AE%D9%88%D8%AF-%D8%B1%D8%A7-%DA%AF%D9%88%D9%84-%D9%85%DB%8C%E2%80%8C%D8%B2%D9%86%D9%86%D8%AF-%D9%BE%D8%A7%D8%B3%D8%AE%E2%80%8C%D9%87%D8%A7%DB%8C-%D9%88%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%AA%D8%B1-%D8%A8%D9%84%D8%A7%DA%A9-%D8%A8%D9%87-%D9%BE%D8%B1%D8%B3%D8%B4%E2%80%8C%D9%87%D8%A7%DB%8C-%D8%A7%D9%86%D8%AA%D9%82%D8%A7%D8%AF%DB%8C-%D9%85%D9%87%D8%B1%D9%86%D8%A7%D9%85%D9%87

This is the magazine: http://www.mehrnameh.ir/

March 28, 2015 Mislabeling capitalism, 1%vs 99% private property, and the current issues regarding Israel and Iran at battle NOLA Radio

(https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C7MrmRlSRMg&feature=youtu.be)

Best regards,

Walter

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2:36 am on October 4, 2019

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Interview On My Relationship With Murray Rothbard

Danny Woods  is the interviewer

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12:32 pm on October 2, 2019

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Recession?

I was interviewed on RT television on recession

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12:32 pm on October 2, 2019

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Why Are There So Few Libertarians? Are Most People Hard-Wired Against This Philosophy?

Here is a debate on this issue between Walter E. Block and Robert Wenzel

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12:31 pm on October 2, 2019

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Which Is Preferable: Gold or Bitcoin?

From: J
Sent: Sunday, June 16, 2019 8:32 AM
To: Walter Block <wblock@loyno.edu>
Subject:

Professor,

If/when the electrical grid goes down, monthly income will stop (pensions, Social Security, salaries), and regardless of money or other resources that people can lay their hands on, they will be unable to pay bills.  At this point, I’m assuming that that checks by mail will not be an option…the USPO and banks will probably not be functioning. Nevertheless, obligations will continue.  While monthly bills must be paid to far-away locations, we will not be able to do so.

Would you care to speculate on what will happen when people cannot be paid or access banking, and bills cannot be sent by businesses?  What a mess… the business backlog will be enormous.

J

From: Walter Block <wblock@loyno.edu>
Sent: Monday, September 09, 2019 10:38 AM
To: J
Subject: RE:

Dear J:

I prefer gold to bitcoin as money. The former was once chosen by the people when they were “Free to Choose,” the latter never was.

Further, without electricity, our monetary system would be a gigantic mess with bitcoin. A horrid mess. Both our present system, and bitcoin, depend upon electricity. But gold as money does not. This is only a very minor reason to prefer gold as money to bitcoin.

Walter

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2:34 am on October 1, 2019

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How To Deal With Bored Economics Students

This letter was written to me by a former student of mine at Loyola

From: J
Sent: Sunday, September 08, 2019 12:17 PM
To: wblock@loyno.edu
Subject: Teaching my first micro economics course

Dr. Block,

This is J, I wanted to tell you the good news that I’m now teaching economics at a university here in Saigon. I want to both thank you again for all you help allowing me to work here and pursue teaching. I’m also thinking of going back to university to get a phd in Econ.

I wanted to ask for some advice on teaching kids with no knowledge of economics at all to basic micro econ.  If you have any new book recommendations or other materials that help with class I’d happily listen. Also do you have any tips for dealing with bored students?

Thank you, J

From: Walter Block <wblock@loyno.edu>

Sent: Sunday, September 08, 2019 12:26 PM

To: J

Subject: RE: Teaching my first micro economics course

Dear J:

When you’re ready to go get a phd in econ, let me know for some free advice.

Bored students? Google jokes for, on, economists, and tell them to your students. Show economic moves like Wall Street, Man in a White Suit, I’m all right Jack,  and give them homework assignments to watch while they fill them out. Then, discuss these movies. The best intro book by far is Henry Hazlitt’s econ in 1 lesson.

Best regards,

Walter

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4:19 pm on September 26, 2019

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From: S
Sent: Thursday, September 26, 2019 4:36 AM
To: Walter Block <wblock@loyno.edu>
Subject: Follow-up question on your blog post

Greetings, dear Professor Block!

I have seen a recent post of yours about libertarian view in regard of dead bodies:

https://www.lewrockwell.com/lrc-blog/who-should-own-dead-bodies/

A question arises, how are property rights over dead body defined? It’s obvious that original owner – once dead – is gone. Letʼs suppose that he/she has not expressed his/her will in regard of who shall be the owner of the dead body. Who can claim the body and on which grounds in libertarian framework? It may be common sense to say that immediate relatives can claim it, but what if no such relatives exist or are interested in acquiring such possession?

Another related question is that once someone by default has such property rights or acquires these from original owner by means of voluntary exchange, he/she should be able to do whatever he/she pleases with this new property (as long as it does not violate others’ property rights). Current, non-libertarian law is inconsistent here, as dead bodies are viewed neither as subjects of the law nor as legal property. (Well, in fact even living bodies are not accepted as property of each human being – say, in many countries voluntary prostitution or voluntary suicide are illegal, which is a violation of individual property rights by the state.) Am I right to suggest, that a dead body is an object of property, and once the owner is defined, it is perfectly fine to use such body in whatever manner conceivable – be it for medical experiments, sexual pleasure, sale to third parties, religious rituals or cooking a meal from it?

Best regards, S

From: Walter Block <wblock@loyno.edu>

Sent: Thursday, September 26, 2019 9:14 AM

To: S

Subject: RE: Follow-up question on your blog post

Dear S:

Thanks for your important question/challenge

Murray Rothbard once wrote about homeless bums. Who would help them if they were mugged? Who would avenge them if they were murdered? His answer was twofold. One, these acts must necessarily occur on someone’s property, since under anarchocapitalism, all property would be owned (apart from the submarginal, which no one wants). So, the owner would likely take umbrage at any of his “tenants’” rights being violated. Two, for people who couldn’t afford to pay rent, there would be private charity, “friends of bums.”

I answer your question based on Murray’s as usual brilliant insights. In the free society, an cap, no government, people would anticipate such challenges, problems and solve them. The heirs of the deceased would take care of them. There would be private charities that would come to the rescue of those dead bodies who would otherwise be subjected to the insults, mal-treatment, you mention.

Would this work perfectly? No. Nothing touched by human beings can be perfect. The utilitarian question is, under which system are the indignities you mention less likely to occur. With an all-loving government, or, predicated upon the Non Aggression Principle of libertarianism. I say the latter.

Best regards,

Walter

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4:18 pm on September 26, 2019

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