Tag Archives | IP

Kopieren Ist Kein Diebstahl


A solemn, slow march … introduces the assembly of the priests [in The Magic Flute] in the most appropriate manner. It is said that in answer to the accusation of a friend that he had stolen this march from Gluck’s “Alceste” (Act I., sc. 3), Mozart laughingly replied that that was impossible, as it still stood there.
(Otto Jahn, Life of Mozart, vol. 3, trans. Pauline D. Townsend (London: Novello, Ewer & Co., 1882), p. 323.)

CFP: Lockean Libertarianism

[cross-posted at BHL]

Billy Christmas (who was part of the same MANCEPT 2014 workshop as me (“The Current State of Libertarian Political Philosophy”) in September, and who also participated in the Molinari Society’s symposium on libertarianism and privilege with me this past December) writes to tell me that he is convening a workshop on “Lockean Libertarianism” at MANCEPT 2015 (Manchester UK, 1-3 September 2015). Check out the description below and consider submitting an abstract. I greatly enjoyed last year’s MANCEPT gig and can recommend its sequel.


Call for papers: MANCEPT workshop on Lockean Libertarianism

MANCEPT workshops, University of Manchester, Oxford Road, Manchester, UK.
Tuesday 1st September – Thursday 3rd September 2015.


Lockean libertarianism is a family of theories of justice based upon property rights: those we have over ourselves and those we have over the external world. The connection between these two sets of rights is a contentious issue. The self-ownership principle holds that all individuals are, initially, the full moral owners of their own person, including their body, mind, and the product of their labour. The world-ownership principle specifies the rights we have to use and appropriate external resources, including natural resources (e.g. a plot of land, water, forests, deposits of fossil fuels) and products of human labour (e.g. a house, a pencil, a car). Locke himself claimed there is a proviso on the appropriation of external property that required one to leave ‘enough and as good in common for others’. Nozick favoured a weak interpretation of the proviso, while others reject it altogether (e.g. Rothbard, Hoppe), or believe the only proviso that is consistent with self-ownership is so minor that it has no effect of equality (e.g. the ‘Blockean proviso’). Others still think the proviso should be interpreted as in strong support of extensive redistribution of external resources to those who have less than an equal share (e.g. Steiner, Van Parijs, Otsuka, Vallentyne, Roark). Whereas some claim an unjust appropriation of previously unowned resources is an incoherent idea (e.g. Feser), or that resources do not exist independently of an act of discovery (e.g. Paul, Rassmussen & Den Uyl). Some from outside the Lockean tradition believe that the reconciliation of self-ownership with equality is incoherent (e.g. Risse, Cohen), while some within it would agree and oppose any form of egalitarianism (e.g. Rothbard and Hoppe), others reject the incoherence theses (e.g. Steiner and Otsuka), and others still believe equality should be reconceived as equality of authority, which stands in a natural equilibrium with respect for one’s self-ownership (e.g. Long). Lockean libertarianism then, is a very diverse set of political theories, with diverging socioeconomic implications. This workshop aims to provide a space to critically discuss Lockean libertarianism: what it is, and what its implications are. Whether the Lockean approach is taken to be problematic or promising, we invite papers that discuss self-ownership or world-ownership separately, as well as papers on the conceptual connection between self-ownership, world-ownership, and the proviso. We also encourage investigations into potential applications of these different forms of Lockean libertarianism. How should we conceive of, both philosophically and socioeconomically, things like public property and national borders? Can intellectual property be justified on a Lockean basis? Are children self-owners, or the fruits of their parents labour? How ought a Lockean respond to historical injustices such as land theft and slavery?

Please submit abstracts by email to Kasper Ossenblok (kasper.ossenblok@ugent.be) and/or Billy Christmas (billy.christmas@manchester.ac.uk).

Deadline for submissions: 1st June 2015. You will be notified of the success of your submission by 20th June. Please note that the deadline for registering for a graduate student bursary from MANCEPT in June 10th.


Of Making Many Books There Is No End

I’ve just created two Patreon pages.

One is a per-month pledge page for several libertarian book projects I’m working on; these include:


  • Austro-Athenian Foundations of Libertarian Ethics, the transcribed record of my 2006 philosophy seminar at the Mises Institute;
  • selections of material from my Free Nation Foundation / Libertarian Nation Foundation days;
  • collections of more recent online writings, from my blog and elsewhere;
  • a collection of translations of works on libertarian class theory by Charles Comte, Charles Dunoyer, Augustin Thierry, and Gustave de Molinari;
  • Frodo Shrugged, a book comparing and contrasting Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged;
  • a new interdisciplinary libertarian academic journal, the Molinari Review.

Details here.

The other is a per-post pledge page for my four science-fiction/fantasy blogs: on Star Trek, The Avengers (the UK one, not the Marvel one), Danger Man/The Prisoner, and the Oz books. These posts will also be collected as books. Details here.

Pledgers will have opportunities to get advance content, free signed books, and the chance to influence the order in which I tackle the various projects.

You can pledge as little as a dollar per month (for the books page) and/or a dollar per post (for the blogs page). Any help is appreciated; I have a lot of cool stuff I want to accomplish, but am in tight circumstances financially (and my home computer is on its last legs).

Boiling the Jaywalkers

So this guy made £35,000 selling forged celebrity autographs, and they caught him. Good. But they’ve also charged him with copyright violations, which is crap; and they’ve decided to lock him in a cage for 21 months, which is absurd. He should be forced to pay back the people he ripped off, to be sure; but he poses no serious danger to anybody. And even if I believed in retributive punishment, which I don’t, how could anyone think nearly two years’ imprisonment was a proportionate response to selling fake autographs?

Of course there is nothing unusual about this case.

C4SS Under Attack

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You may have noticed that the C4SS website is down (or possibly, by the time you read this, redirecting). Here’s the story.

The Center for a Stateless Society (C4SS) has an associated student group, Students for a Stateless Society (S4SS), with affiliates around the world. A couple of weeks ago, S4SS noticed that its affiliate at the University of Ghent in Belgium (S4SS UGent) was being taken over by racists and Islamophobic bigots, so it issued a public statement disaffiliating with the group, and explained why. The explanation included quotations from bigoted comments made on the S4SS UGent facebook page – a page that was public at the time, though it has since been made private. C4SS then put up a link to the S4SSstatement.

One of the racists quoted in the statement, a certain Olivier Janssens, demanded that the notice be taken down, alleging that a) his comments were copyrighted and shouldn’t be quoted without his consent, and b) his privacy was violated, and personal safety threatened, since we had made public his comments from a private forum. Since we judged that explaining the disaffiliation, and warning potential comrades against Janssens and his entryist colleagues, created a fair-use context for the quotations – and since, contrary to Janssens’s assertions, the forum in which the comments were made was actually public at the time he made them – we declined his request (with some asperity).

Apparently unaware of the concept of the “Streisand Effect,” Janssens engaged a lawyer – one who publicly brags about the ease of using flimsy DMCA claims to intimidate web hosts into compliance – who thereupon used a flimsy DMCA claim to intimidate C4SS/S4SS’s web host into compliance, and both the C4SS and S4SS websites were shut down.

More information here, here, here, here, and here.

Legal work is under way to get our sites back. Any financial help at this time would be especially appreciated:

Bitcoin: 129pipr12a5UUZ447bLYjx1paRnCXqG5vi
WePay: http://www.wepay.com/donations/73427
PayPal: iradical@praxeology.net

In the meantime, to combat censorship (and help that Streisand Effect along), here is the
S4SS post that Olivier Janssens doesn’t want anyone to be allowed to read:

S4SS’ UGent Not Anarchists (or Comrades)

September 11, 2013 by S4SS Admin

From the inception of Students for a Stateless Society we have strived to provide a space to learn about liberty and engage in projects to further its cause. We seek to provide a networked structure that will allow for maximum autonomy of our chapters while fostering maximum inter/intra-chapter participation, communication and coordination. Although we do not ‘own’ the S4SS ‘trademark’ we feel it is necessary to emphasize that we do decide for ourselves which individuals, groups and chapters we recognize as being part of our network.

For the last few months we have been observing a rapid change of subject and tone in the discussions held at the facebook group of the S4SS chapter in Belgium; Students for a Stateless Society UGent. The atmosphere present in that group is becoming increasingly hostile towards fellow liberty-advocates, liberty-oriented organizations, and – most clearly – those of the Islamic faith. In accordance with our organizational orientation which states:

3. S4SS spaces are safe and valued spaces. We are dedicated to not only identifying agents of aggression, but dissolving institutions of oppression.”

We feel S4SS U-gent is not representing this orientation in their structure or discussions. In fact we feel they are actively promoting oppression of Muslim minorities, as evidenced by the following facebook-conversations:

Piece 1: https://www.facebook.com/groups/452955004728164/permalink/637332409623755/

S4SS UGent Facebook 1

Everaert: According to Lode Cossaer and his fellow Trotskyists it is “redundant to talk about the problems in the Arab world” and “we should focus ourselves on signs of hope.” I propose sending him on a one way trip to Syria. He can go and ignore the bullets and beheadings (they’re redundant anyway), and look for hope. Surely he won’t return. That kid won’t even survive reality.

Arnaert: Cossaer denies reality? Behold the most important attitude of the left!

Everaert: Reality is redundant, so not relevant and pointless. Bleri Lleshi = Lode Cossaer (ed. Bleri Lleshi is a leftist Belgian philosopher, documentary filmmaker and political scientist who focuses on things like identity, equality and neo-liberalism)

Janssens: It would be relevant enough if you know that the SPA/PS (Leftist political parties in Belgium) are growing in power because of the muslims, and that the Arab world is helping them accomplish this. Unless his hope is is ‘not being beheaded in 20 years because he is a Christian’.

Verdyck: He has no capital and his ambition to work for the government all his life.

Xavier Everaert, Brecht Arnaert, Olivier Janssens and Yannick Verdyck share very islamophobic viewpoints as visible from the above conversation. Let us be clear; We do not believe the Muslim world is helping leftist political parties gain power. Muslims are individuals with their own thoughts, their actions and political beliefs are not a result of their skin color or belief in a certain deity. Additionally:

Piece 2: https://www.facebook.com/groups/452955004728164/permalink/636924376331225/

In response to a story involving a recommendation to the government to change public holidays to involve more multi-cultural festivities instead of just Christian ones.(http://m.gva.be/nieuws/binnenland/aid988952/pasen-hemelvaartsdag-en-allerheiligen-geen-wettelijke-feestdagen-meer.aspx) A selection of comments has been translated.

S4SS UGent Facebook 2

Janssens: Men, it’s time for revolution

Kint: ‘recommendation’

Jacobs: Funny how the result of ‘inter-cultural dialogue’ always comes down to giving Muslims more advantages while Catholics get doused in shit every day by our regime’s media.

Janssens: Enough is enough.

Arnaert: I don’t think they’re taking it far enough. I think western names like John, Peter and Paul are quite upsetting as well.

Verdyck: And of course, everyone who thinks this will cause trouble between original-Belgians and muslims is obviously a xenophobe.

Everaert: Guns. Guns to kill all those sand-niggers and their servants like Lode Cossaer, just like the animals they are.

Verdyck: I have never been able to find the difference between Mein Kampf and the Koran, but according to Lode Cossaer and Joelle Milquet there is definitely a difference. Hitler wrote Mein Kampf in German, that xenophobic nationalist!

Let us highlight Everaert’s comment: ֻGuns. Guns to kill all those sand-niggers and their servants like Lode Cossaer, just like the animals they are.” Do we really need say more? In no way can you call this critical of religion. This is pure racism. S4SS is supposed to provide safe spaces for students of all sorts, including individuals with minority religious and ethnic backgrounds. In addition this comment is a threat to initiate violence against peaceful people; S4SS should not associate itself with people who make threats to the life and liberty of others. If this wasn’t enough, here is more:

Piece 3: https://www.facebook.com/groups/452955004728164/permalink/628664343823895/

Janssens: HHH (ed. Hans Herman Hoppe) has the balls to say that, thanks to our welfare state, our genetic pool is fucked. Exactly my thoughts. The only reason the Muslim parasite can breed at a 10 times faster pace than us. Totally love this guy.

Hoppe Extract

Kint: Truefax. A virus can’t survive without a host.

And finally:

Piece 4: https://www.facebook.com/groups/452955004728164/permalink/619657114724618/

In response to: http://www.nieuwsblad.be/article/detail.aspx?articleid=dmf20130723_00667877 A selection of comments has been translated.

S4SS UGent Facebook 4

Kint: My problem is that mohammedan promise 5 times a day that they will chop my head off, and that I have to pay for them to do this.

Kint: Under normal circumstances people like that would be institutionalized, or better yet: deported. Because the kuffar (unbeliever) keeps paying to finance and maintain that fascist death-cult. Stop welfare checks and the problem is solved.

Kint: Mohammedans who do not promise this are not good mohemmedans. The ‘existence’ of the so-called moderate muslim is irrelevant in this discussion. The question is: what side will the moderate muslim take when all hell breaks loose?

Kint: Servititude is the worst. Breivik had the idea.

(ed. Breivik: Anders Behring Breivik http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anders_Behring_Breivik )

Kint: Mohammedans must practice Jihad in multiple ways. One of the techniques is to soothe the Kuffar to sleep by becoming ‘moderate’ or becoming your friend.

Everaert: ‘I know friendly muslims, so there is no problem’ , how cute.

Everaert: I know how you will defend yourself. You will convert and collaborate and decapitate your mother and father because your moderate friends ask you nicely, just like in Syria.

Kint: Collaborators of islamofascists will be the first targets. The fear has to spread to the other side. http://wiki.artikel20.com/

Kint: Moderate muslims are a fiction created by Mohammed himself. They are the first wave of the Jihad. The anthrax in your carpet. This is where the discussion ends for me, you are in a deep comatose sleep. You won’t care if your head is removed. Insh’allah! (ed. If god wills it!)

Everaert: First point is to get rid of collaborators like you because we have the suspicion that you will pick their side. Just like the liberals have picked the side of the salafists in the middle-east, is there any reason to think why they won’t do that here?

Again, there is no conspiracy of world domination by which ‘the Muslims’ are seeking power. Suggesting that people are automatically part of a plot just because of their religion or ethnic ancestry is racism. Also, posting references to kill-lists set up by racist groups does not qualify S4SS UGent as a safe space, which S4SS chapters should be.

We would like to take the opportunity to point out the continuous hostility towards Lode Cossaer, president of the Murray Rothbard Institute in Belgium. Throughout multiple conversations he has been ridiculed, verbally attacked and his life has been threatened. As S4SS members we feel deeply ashamed that personal attacks like this have happened in a chapter that we consider part of our network. If you’re reading this, Lode, we would like to apologize for not taking action on this at a sooner date. We empathize with the possible fear and under appreciation you feel because of S4SS UGent.

In response to the evidence provided above we have decided to dissociate ourselves with S4SS UGent as well as the members that most prominently voiced racist opinions and threats; Xavier Everaert, Brecht Arnaert, Olivier Janssens, Yannick Verdyck and Peter Kint. We suggest that the members of S4SS UGent who are not part of its racist core to start a different chapter, a safe and valued space, so that the idea of a stateless society may continue to grow in their university and their country.

Finally, we would like to provide the opportunity for anyone else to sign this message with or without additional comments. As a closing statement let us reiterate our orginizational orientation:

The Students for a Stateless Society (S4SS) agree to the following four design principles:

1. “Student” does not mean subservient, submissive, or subordinate. A student is anyone who desires knowledge. A student can be either a teacher or a learner.

2. A stateless society is anarchy. Students have a right to contribute to and have a voice in the institutions they participate or constitute. As anarchists we will actively pursue and support hierarchy dissolving and mutual aid projects. Our time as students is not a time of passivity or mindless discipline, but a time for activity and creativity.

3. S4SS spaces are safe and valued spaces. We are dedicated to not only identifying agents of aggression, but dissolving institutions of oppression.

4. All chapters of S4SS, to be considered active, must have at least one volunteer “point of contact” that can be reached by interested students or encouraging chapters. There is no limit to the number of S4SS chapters that can be on any one campus – swarm and take over!

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