[ExI] libertarians and inheritance

Dan dan_ust at yahoo.com
Mon May 4 19:58:32 UTC 2009

--- On Mon, 5/4/09, John K Clark <jonkc at bellsouth.net> wrote:
> "Dan" <dan_ust at yahoo.com>
>> Regarding inheritence in general, too, I think the
>> outcome of enforcing
>> taxes on it has been to increase the power of the
>> state and dependency on it
> Well sure, but that's in the nature of all taxes and in the
> real world we're
> not likely to see the elimination of all taxes anytime
> soon; but we might be
> able to get rid of some of them and inheritance taxes would
> not be on my
> list of taxes that need to be eliminated immediately.

I'm not sure how I'd rank which taxes to get rid of first.  There was some economist a while back -- he was completely anti-tax (in other words, consistent, logical, and sane) -- but argued that certain taxes were worse than others, but his ranking was based on the scope of taxation -- that is, whether a tax affected a narrower or greater range of activities.  I forget exactly how he weighed in or his reasoning, though his ultimate aim was elimination of all taxes (and the state with it; again, the consistent, logical, and sane position).
>> As a strict libertarian,  in terms of
>> justice
> I'm a Libertarian too and I like justice as well as the
> next man, but given
> the choice between justice and a decision in my favor there
> is simply no
> contest; don't look at me like that, at least I'm willing
> to admit it. When
> was the last time you heard a baseball player screaming at
> a umpire
> "What do you mean I'm safe, are you blind, clearly I was
> out!".

Then, to that degree, you are not a libertarian.  You will set aside your libertarian views when it suits you.  How this any different than a person who admits he's not a libertarian, emphatically states he's not one, and just says, "Well, I won't initiate forces most of the time, but when it's to my benefit I will."?
> And if any list member is a billionaire and also wants to
> mention me in his
> will I promise I won't flame you about it, in fact I
> promise to say only
> good things about you.
> Not only that but I'll be glad to pack your parachute for
> your next skydive too.

This reminds me of a private poker game I attended a few years ago.  I asked the person running the game if he trusted the dealer.  He told me, "Yeah, but only about 80% of the time."  I quipped, "Then you don't trust the dealer."




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