Author: Robert
Taxing Businesses is Taxing the Rich?
| 15 September 2017 | 10:59 | Economics, Politics | No comments

Businesses exist because people have invested in productive assets like land, buildings, machines, and employees. These businesses provide goods and services that are voluntarily purchased or in other words things that people need or want. Taxes decrease the productivity of businesses which means less product, less employment, less income to buy other products. Taxes decrease the standard of living for everyone which is especially onerous for those on the lower end of the economic scale. So increase tax on businesses? Not a good idea.

Alberta Libertarian Party forum
| 3 September 2017 | 20:34 | Economics | No comments

People want to move forward with getting an Albertan libertarian party registered.  To that end we have set up a forum to discuss and plan the path forward.  If you want to be part of this effort, join us at:

Religion and Libertarianism
| 5 October 2016 | 19:26 | Politics, Religion | No comments

There is antagonism between some religious people and some libertarians due to generalizations.  The religious people of this mindset see libertarians as immoral or at least amoral, and disrespectful (libertines who have the attitude that I will do what I want and you can’t stop me). The generalizing libertarians see religious people as wanting for force everyone to live according to their standards. The short answer to this is to not get into the fallacy of generalization. For those who think their generalization is reality, let me try to give a different point of view.

Libertarianism is a political philosophy about how people can get along with each other; it is not a philosophy of life like a religion. In a libertarian society, if someone were to violate the property right of another (some kind of assault or theft), then they would be held accountable to compensate the victim as far as possible. Holding someone accountable for violating a property right is for the protection of property rights, not to make the criminal moral. Libertarianism is amoral, but there is more to life than politics, so libertarians can have a life style that is moral and even religious. Also note that libertarianism requires that people have respect and consideration for the person and possessions of others.  People cannot just do whatever they want without considering the possible violation of someone’s property right. The politics of a peaceful and prosperous society requires no more and no less than law that protects property right.

In speaking to my fellow libertarians, I would note that the major religions of the world all have some form of the golden rule: do unto others as you would have others do unto you. Most religious people try to abide by the golden rule in their personal interactions with others.  Granted, many of these same people do not understand that supporting government taxation and regulation is contrary to the golden rule, but then you could say the same for non-religious people too. Most religious people are committed to their values. Once they see the value of the libertarian position, they will be strong supporters. Something that libertarians do that might cause religious people to shy away, is to express support for certain special interest groups. This can give the impression that support of these special interests is the libertarian cause. Although this is not true, it can still be the perception that turns people away. It is better to promote the whole reality that the libertarian cause is beneficial for everyone.

For the religious side, I can only speak from a Christian perspective. Taking other people’s property (stealing, robbery, embezzlement, fraud, taxation, etc.) is immoral, is not Christian, and is not libertarian.  There is nothing in the teachings of Jesus nor in His treatment of other people that would justify trying to force Christianity on anyone which force is in itself immoral.  Faith in Jesus Christ, following His teachings, and choosing moral behaviour must come from within as a person’s own choice to be valid.  It is immoral to try to force someone to be moral.  So from a Christian perspective, taxes and regulation are immoral and libertarianism is the only political philosophy that is compatible with Christianity.

Now my particular Christian view is that of a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. And let me say to my fellow Latter-Day Saints that libertarianism is nothing more nor less than the principle of agency which we consider fundamental to the gospel of Christ. Agency means that everyone has the privilege and responsibility to choose for themselves what they will believe and how they will live. The section of Doctrine and Covenants on government, 134, verse 2 states: “We believe that no government can exist in peace, except such laws are framed and held inviolate as will secure to each individual the free exercise of conscience, the right and control of property, and the protection of life.”  This is as good a succinct description of libertarianism as you will find anywhere.  The righteous Nephite kings and judges in the Book of Mormon did not tax their people nor force any beliefs on them.  Mosiah 2:14 “And even I (King Benjamin), myself, have laboured with mine own hands that I might serve you, and that ye should not be laden with taxes, ….”  Alma 1:17 “…..; and now the law could have no power on any man for his belief.”  Tax and regulate government goes against everything that Latter-Day Saints are taught about good government.  Libertarianism is the only political philosophy that is consistent with the principle of agency.

I believe libertarian groups can attract support from religious people by presenting their group in a professional manner.  Besides being courteous and considerate, this would mean avoiding the marketing error of appearing to cater to special interest groups.  I encourage religious people to look past the amorality of libertarianism to the fact that it is the only moral political choice.  Libertarians will protect religious liberty along with every other liberty.  Libertarianism will help those on the low end of the economic scale as opposed to the failed do-gooder policies of other political parties.   The libertarian philosophy is a subset of religious philosophy so the basic political philosophy is the same.  Libertarians and religious people should expect to share the same political views.


Defining Capitalism
| 9 August 2016 | 17:42 | Economics | No comments

Capitalism is an economic system that uses a high degree of capital (or productive) assets, has a high degree of division of labour, and requires a medium of exchange. Capitalism started with what is called the industrial revolution and got a big boost with American independence and the spread of a greater amount of freedom and property right. Capitalism produces a myriad of products and services that sustain higher populations and reduce poverty. (Unfortunately, the term capitalism is misused to refer to political systems that grant privileges to large companies in violation of free enterprise and property rights.)

Subsistence agricultural and cottage industry is another type of economy that uses some capital assets, has some division of labour, and uses a medium of exchange along with barter. A hunter and gatherer economy uses few capital assets, little division of labour, and has largely self sufficient groups which which may or may not barter or use some medium of exchange.

The three types of economies described above can all exist in the same region at the same time although if capitalism is present, it will dominant the economy.

A capitalist economy can function in any form of government, but will be most effective where there is freedom and protection of property right. Socialist, fascist, and dictatorship forms of government restrict free enterprise and property right.  There is nothing stopping these forms of government from investing in productive assets, but they are subject to bureaucratic management which is less effective than private enterprise. Democracies are a mesh mash of socialism, fascism, dictatorship, and some property right all of which is subject to ineffective bureaucratic management.

The best form of government is a constitution that has laws that do no more nor less than protect the right of individuals to decide what they do with themselves and their possessions (property right) with provision to be made whole if that right is violated. All operations would be provided in the private sector where private ownership would avoid waste, the profit motive would provide low cost, efficient operations, innovation, and a high level of customer satisfaction, all in contrast to bureaucratic management. Under such a government, capitalism would flourish with peace and prosperity for all.

The Spirit of Liberty
| 15 June 2016 | 21:00 | Politics | No comments

Libertarians are often missing the “spirit of the law” of liberty which is showing respect and consideration for others. When a libertarian is disrespectful, there is not going to be a court case to determine damages.  What is going to happen is others are going to think of that person as a hypocrite and untrustworthy for upholding the principle of liberty. The libertarian may be thinking “who cares” or “suck it up”.  Such a dismissive attitude is not going to win friends and influence people.  The libertarian may think that they are going to live their life of liberty on their own, but that is not possible in our society with the current pervasive taxes and regulations.

The “letter of the law” of liberty (that everyone has property rights to choose what they do with themselves and their possessions (or the non-aggression principle)) is attractive to many people.  Those people will join the cause of liberty if they are not disgusted by libertarians who violate the “spirit of the law” of liberty by their disrespectful and inconsiderate conduct.

If you are a libertarian, please take this idea of the “spirit of the law” of liberty seriously.  Surely you want others to join you in the cause for liberty.

Registering an Alberta Libertarian Party
| 15 June 2016 | 20:53 | Politics | 3 Comments

This website is collecting contact information for those who are interested in seeing an Alberta libertarian party formed.

Why Is There Evil In The World?
| 15 June 2016 | 20:01 | Religion | No comments

This question is usually framed in relation to the God of love.  If God is good and loving, why would He allow evil in the world?

In order to understand the answer to this question, one has to understand the eternal nature of people, the universality of the principle of liberty, and the purpose of this world.

A person has an “essence” that has always existed.  This “essence” of you was not created and cannot be destroyed.  Your “essence” was embodied in a spirit in the celestial realm.  You are a child of God. You were then given the opportunity to be born on earth where your spiritual self was incorporated into a physical body. So here we are the “essence” of ourselves in a spirit body which is in a physical body.

God abides by the principle of liberty which is that everyone has the right to decide what to do with themselves and their possessions. This is referred to as agency in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. Agency meaning that each person is an agent unto themselves. Now God created this earth and everything in it including our bodies, so He has a property right for all this.  God does not have a property right in that “essence” of each person which we manifest by our will or our ability to choose what we will do. God will not force a person to do something against their will.

God sends us into this world and disables our memory of our previous existence.  The purpose is to see what we will choose given our liberty and being on our own.  God only allows those who choose good to live where He lives.  God prepares other places for those who choose lessor degrees of goodness.  The choice between good and evil must be real.  Consequently, there is evil in the world.

God does everything in His power to invite, entice, and encourage people to choose the good, but He will not violate anyone’s agency.  God may exercise His property right and decide in His wisdom that it is better for all concerned if a person or a people are taken out of the world.  The most obvious example of this is the flood where everyone except Noah and his family were so corrupt that most people being born had little chance of learning to choose the good.

God abhors evil and ensures that it is contained.  God allows evil in this temporary abode so we can have the opportunity to show our willingness to choose the good and be able to live with God again.

Minimum Wage Laws
| 16 January 2016 | 16:21 | Economics, Politics | No comments

A wage is a price that employers are willing to pay for an employee. Prices are subject to the law of demand. We have all seen the effect of demand where a price goes up and people buy less or a price goes down and people buy more. Setting a minimum wage increases the price to employ a whole group of people which will eventually result in an increase in unemployment including those persons who will now give up on the job market and are not counted in government unemployment numbers. Employers will adjust the way they run their businesses by changing the duties of a fewer number of employees or perhaps by introducing capital assets so a fewer number of employees can be more productive. People work for low wages because their lack of skills and experience puts them at that level of productivity. The way to increase productivity and the associated wage level is to increase skills and experience. The first step to increased productivity is to gain skills and experience in a low paying job, a step that is not available for many due to minimum wage laws. Many politicians and their supporters think the minimum wage is compassionate while in fact it consigns many to despair of being able to work. One does wonder about the sincerity of politicians since they increase the minimum wage a few dollars rather than to something like thirty dollars. Minimum wage laws are a prime example of the untended consequences of government intervention in the economy where those it is supposed to help are actually hurt.

Government does NOT create jobs
| 12 November 2015 | 12:25 | Economics, Politics | No comments

I have noticed in the press that once again government is saying that they are creating jobs.  If government returning tax funds to the private sector creates jobs, then when the taxes are taken out of the private sector, jobs are destroyed. It would be more accurate to say that government is restoring previously destroyed jobs in the private sector while incurring administrative costs in taking the taxes out and then putting them back in. The next worst thing the government does is destroy productive jobs in the private sector and replace them with productive jobs in the public sector which are less effective due to bureaucratic management. The next worst thing the government does is destroy productive jobs in the private sector and replace them with unproductive jobs in the public sector. The next worst thing the government does is destroy productive jobs in the private sector and replace them with bureaucratic waste and inefficiency. Canadian governments take over 40% of the annual private sector income in taxes which is a tremendous loss in potential investment and the associated employment.  Governments ignore the negative effect they have on the economy.  When a government claims to be creating jobs either they are dishonest or they do not understand the impact of taxes on the economy. The truth is that the net effect of governments is to destroy jobs.

Four Reasons to Vote Libertarian
| 17 October 2015 | 10:52 | Politics | No comments

Check this out; especially the fourth reason which both Tim and I think is the most important one. It has to do with integrity in that we are all libertarians in our private lives, but we (the people of Canada) support something entirely different as voters.