[ExI] Human Experimenting

Stathis Papaioannou stathisp at gmail.com
Sat May 23 02:43:08 UTC 2009

2009/5/23 painlord2k at libero.it <painlord2k at libero.it>:

> If I buy a car and agree to pay it tomorrow, the car become really mine
> tomorrow, after I pay for it. If I can not pay, the car will return to the
> previous owner. I could also be responsible for the incurred damages or
> costs incurred for the repossession. If and when I have the means to pay, I
> will be forced to pay. But I can not be forced to work to pay back the
> damages and the costs. I can only be forced to pay with what I have at hand
> or by seizing my possessions. Usually, the debtors will choose the redress
> they prefer (money seizure or goods repossessed).
> If you can be forced to work for pay past debts, you are a slave.

It depends on the details of the contract. It could be that if you
don't pay for the car you can be sued for the full amount of the car,
or just a proportion. When people are sued and they can't pay, they
can declare bankruptcy. But bankruptcy is a legal addition to the
system that, indirectly, prevents slavery or indentured labour. It is
not an automatic part of contract law.

> In the past (Rome for example), slavery existed not on racial basis but on
> other basis.
> People sold themselves or where sold as slaves as a way to pay for their
> debts and the debts of their family.
> The act of selling themselves to others and the act of being unable to full
> fill their own obligations to others individuals of the society can be
> considered a way people loses their privileges under the social contract.
> This would, IMHO, be consistent with the fact that the other large class of
> people that become slaves was the prisoners of war (by default out of the
> social contract of the society they are at war against). Other sources of
> slaves for the Romans were abandoned children (individuals out of the social
> contract) and slaves bough from abroad (the same). In other culture I'm
> aware, the slaves are people out of the social contract of the slave owner.
> Being slaves and being inside the social contract is not possible, as what
> you do is what your master want and he is responsible for your actions.

So where is the contractual problem with people voluntarily selling
themselves into slavery? That they might later change their mind
doesn't seem to be a valid objection, since they knew what they were
getting into when they agreed to the contract.

Stathis Papaioannou

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