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Lew Rockwell: Ron Paul Not Using the State or UN to Control RonPaul.Com

Unknown Lamer posted about a year ago | from the depends-on-what-the-meaning-of-is-is dept.

Republicans 232

New submitter sbulut77 writes with a follow up to accusations Ron Paul is using the UN to gain control of ronpaul.com. "Lew Rockwell explains the RonPaul.com issue. There is so much misinformation on this topic, his blog is very welcome. His blog entry is pretty short and well-written please read the blog post directly." From the article: "Ron is not calling on the UN. ICANN has four approved arbitration organizations. Because the RP.com guys registered Ron's name in Australia, the international arbitration option must be used. Yes, it is associated with the UN. Too bad, but one must play the cards one is dealt. The UN itself is not involved, though note — whatever else is wrong with it — the UN is not a State."

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232 comments

So he is not using the UN, just the UN (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42886321)

Just admit to being a hypocrite instead of playing semantic games.

Re:So he is not using the UN, just the UN (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42886353)

That would shatter the delusions shared by most of his fans...

Re:So he is not using the UN, just the UN (2)

tnk1 (899206) | about a year ago | (#42886395)

Whether or not his fans are deluded, I could not say, but if this "hypocrisy" is the reason you think they are deluded or wrong, I think you need a better argument.

Re:So he is not using the UN, just the UN (4, Interesting)

jythie (914043) | about a year ago | (#42886391)

Sadly it is pretty much the only way to keep the mythology alive... gotta take advantage of all those systems while still putting on a facade of being against them. So it is not that he is using a system that he claims to be against just because it suits him when negotiations failed to produce the deal he wanted... no, it has to be rephrased to sound like he has no choice...

This is little more then 'I believe in the free market, unless regulation gives me a better deal, then I am not actually using regulation because.. look a squirrel!'

Re:So he is not using the UN, just the UN (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42886501)

This is little more then 'I believe in the free market, unless regulation gives me a better deal, then I am not actually using regulation because.. look a squirrel!'

No. This is more a case of "There is no free market (, yet?). There's (still) lots of regulation and if I want to get anywhere I better use what's there instead of what I'd wish there was. Oh, and look, at least there's a cute squirrel!" :)

You sound like one of those people who cannot grasp and handle (the admittedly imperfect) reality.

Re:So he is not using the UN, just the UN (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42886621)

More like: "regulation is bad! Look what it allows me to do!"

Re:So he is not using the UN, just the UN (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42886755)

I'm not (wasn't?) a Ron Paul fan, or an Ayn Rand fan, but this sounds a lot more like when she collected social security payments.

People complained that it was hypocritical, but her response was something like, "I don't think this should exist, but I'm taking what's mine." In Paul's case it's, "I don't think things should work this way, but I have to work within the system as it is."

I mean, he probably still pays income tax like he's supposed to, too.

Re:So he is not using the UN, just the UN (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42886843)

He had a pretty nice, free market and all, option of paying those guys for promoting him and building the community. But hey, why pay them when he can work within the system and take it from them for free?

I hope current owners go for nuclear option, find some Ron Paul and sell the domain to him for five bucks, just to place a site there saying "This is personal homepage of Ron Paul, plumber. It has no relation to Ron Paul, advocate of libertarian ideals (right until the moment he profits more from betraying them)"

Re:So he is not using the UN, just the UN (4, Insightful)

jeffmeden (135043) | about a year ago | (#42887151)

her response was something like, "I don't think this should exist, but I'm taking what's mine."

And with that one sentence she undid every single argument she stood behind. Had she truly held those beliefs, she would have proclaimed "i won't take SS because it's not mine, it is someone elses and they should be able to keep it". Instead, she responded "i will take SS because as long as someone else can get something for nothing, why the fuck shouldn't I?"

Re:So he is not using the UN, just the UN (5, Insightful)

Desler (1608317) | about a year ago | (#42887619)

So as was pointed out, she was being a hypocrite. This would be like claiming to have been an abolitionist yet owning slaves and saying "Oh well, the system allows me to do so". It's fucking bullshit.

Re:So he is not using the UN, just the UN (5, Informative)

ByOhTek (1181381) | about a year ago | (#42886643)

You sound like one of those people who cannot grasp and handle (the admittedly imperfect) reality.

He was offered (a) an option to buy the site, for, given that it's a political site, quite a reasonable sum (and anyway, free market, who cares if it's reasonable, if it isn't, it doesn't sell!) and (b) the option to have free use of the site/domain as long as it remained in control of the original owners.

He was offered the same options he get in the free market (possibly better than the free market, since then they wouldn't necessarily have the threat of interference), yet he uses the option that he wouldn't have in the free market, that he's always rallying against. I'd say the GP has this pretty spot on.

Re:So he is not using the UN, just the UN (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42886823)

As a Ron Paul supporter until after the republican primaries (since he wasn't on the Presidential ballot), this pisses me off. He has betrayed his own support base.

Re:So he is not using the UN, just the UN (3, Informative)

RabidReindeer (2625839) | about a year ago | (#42887423)

As a Ron Paul supporter until after the republican primaries (since he wasn't on the Presidential ballot), this pisses me off. He has betrayed his own support base.

Ron Paul is swimming in all sorts of irony. He's a Republican because he's a pragmatist and it's easier to get elected Republican than Libertarian, even though it's an ideological betrayal. And yet at the same time, the Republicans are failing all over the place, because they won't be pragmatists and won't betray their ideology.

Re:So he is not using the UN, just the UN (3, Insightful)

AlphaWolf_HK (692722) | about a year ago | (#42886883)

ICANN is a private organization, and ICANN makes it pretty clear what the rules are on domain name ownership, and what domain names can and can't be used for. That effectively, as the blog points out, makes domain names leased rather than owned (especially considering you have to pay for them each year, even if only a small amount.)

ICANN has designated a few entities as arbiters to these rules. The UN happens to be one of them. Had ICANN made Timothy Lord one of these arbiters, then Ron Paul would have to have gone to Timothy Lord with this dispute instead of the UN. Would that mean Ron Paul, or anybody else for that matter, would be forced to recognize Timothy Lord as being an authority on global governance? I really don't think so.

As a libertarian myself, I don't support Ron Paul. However, similar to him, I am against the UN. Some things that the UN takes into *serious* consideration are implementing global blaspheme laws and removing IANA from the US department of commerce, handing it to oversight which includes heavy influence from countries like China and Russia, who really don't like the free internet as it exists today. If a private organization like ICANN says that it won't take any action unless I talk to X entity first, then I'll oblige.

Re:So he is not using the UN, just the UN (0)

TsuruchiBrian (2731979) | about a year ago | (#42887069)

Domain name registration is not a free market. The fact that you can sell names you've registered makes it a bit freer than it would have otherwise been, but a true free market would be one with no central domain name authority, and each DNS server would be free to do whatever kind of domain name translation they wished.

This system of people rushing to register domains that they think will be popular and reselling them for hundreds of thousands of dollars is ridiculous. It doesn't drive innovation. It doesn't offer any of the benefits of copyright or trademark. It doesn't help end users. It just rewards people for being lucky.

I don't think Ron Paul can be faulted for not following free market principles in a market that isn't free. Just like it isn't fair to expect democrats to pay higher taxes because they believe in higher taxes.

Re:So he is not using the UN, just the UN (3, Interesting)

Belial6 (794905) | about a year ago | (#42887209)

Actually DNS IS a free market. Each DNS server certainly is free to do whatever kind of domain name translation they wish. The market has spoken and what it has said is that it WANTS a central authority. The only power that ICAAN holds is that of the monopolist. All of the users go to ICAAN, so if you don't use their product, you don't exist. ICAAN's power is that of the monopolist. Not that of government regulation.

Re:So he is not using the UN, just the UN (1, Insightful)

greg1104 (461138) | about a year ago | (#42887457)

If the free market value for the property was $250K, there would be multiple bidders willing to pay that amount. This case is more like extortion than it is a market. "We gots this domain with your name on it...sure would be a shame if we said bad things about you there". It is domain squatting bullshit, and they're lucky the penalty is only losing the domain. This isn't sex.com or something that has some inherent market value to multiple buyers. It's only worth anything because of the association of Ron Paul, the politician, and it's only worth >$0 to him alone.

The sellers are playing their own semantic game, where they've only offered the sale of the domain plus their mailing list, for a large sum based on the list value. They only did that because the market value of the domain itself, the only thing Paul was interested in, is zero. They know it's not worth anything because they're bound by the domain agreement, which says you can't do the thing they did. This is more like a contract dispute than it is government involvement. The distinction is that you don't have to buy a .com domain and agree to its terms. But if you choose to do so, you then have to follow the rules you agreed to.

Re:So he is not using the UN, just the UN (1)

muon-catalyzed (2483394) | about a year ago | (#42887225)

I think it is not UN directly, it is WIPO, the international patent&trademark body. They are the common arbiter for domain disputes. Here is an 'entertainment' filtered search result [wipo.int] of their past decisions including "madonna.com", "sting.com", "jethrotull.com", "jimihendrix.com", "scorpions.com" and many many others. Ron Paul has a pretty good chance to win the dispute there.

Re:So he is not using the UN, just the UN (1)

gl4ss (559668) | about a year ago | (#42886613)

Just admit to being a hypocrite instead of playing semantic games.

why is it a troll? if the fucking guy has to blame this kind of technical wordplay games he could just go and fuck himself.

it's like saying that the lapd isn't part of the state or that cia isn't part of the state and therefore the state isn't involved in waterboarding...

Re:So he is not using the UN, just the UN (2, Interesting)

rs79 (71822) | about a year ago | (#42887353)

Bingo. The procedure he's using comes from WIPO at the behest of the Intellectual Property lobby; it's the method that won out over the free-market alternative. My name is one one of those documents somewhere; I was there.

WIPO is a UN chartered organization.

WIPO is also responsible for the free-market killing nightmare that is ICANN. This began in 1997 when Robert Shaw from the ITU met Albert Tramposch from WIPO and Don Heath from ISOC. Each of them was seeking greater relevance to the net for their organization and they hatched a plan to take control of net administration which led to the "IAHC" committee which the government turned off pretty smartly, then resurrected again as ICANN at the behest of the IP crowd who love the fact there've been no new tlds since 1986 (module the one or two silly ones that have popped up - .coop - please) giving them what they want: "stability", that is no forward movment on Jon Postels 1996 consensus decree to make more, and quickly.

Tramposch got in trouble for this and was replaced. Shaw went on to infiltrate icann by being the point man for creation of the GAC and the asshole behind the plot to convince third world nations to endorse moving administration of the net to the ITU under UN aegis. Heath was more subtle and just made sure everybody he ever knew got a mid six figure salary somehow from all this - a lot of tax records are pubic. And non-trivial in size. Boy there's good money in not making new tlds. Wish I'd thought of that.

Re:So he is not using the UN, just the UN (1)

rs79 (71822) | about a year ago | (#42887387)

Note that the procedure he's using is supposed to be a streamlined cheaper version of going to court. Paul could have done that instead. Rather, he chose the new world order method because it saved him 10X what he paid to WIPO.

Thus proving in a truly free market, the NWO is just another vendor and that libertarians know a bargain when they see one.

Oh boy, a Slashdot Paultard free-for-all (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42886323)

With a link to Lew Rockwell, no less. What can we get from this story that we can't get from ZeroHedge every day?

Re:Oh boy, a Slashdot Paultard free-for-all (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42887305)

Less anti-semitic tin-foil hat wearers in the comment section?

Re:Oh boy, a Slashdot Paultard free-for-all (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42887471)

Lew is a whackadoodle nut job I admire even less for what he's done to Austrian Economics than that self-hating Jew Murray Rothbard. ZeroHedge is just ZeroHedge.

dishonest twat (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42886357)

ICANN is a private, non-profit organization

A "private" organization that's gifted with power by the department of commerce. So that makes it okay. This guy has not got a shred of honesty.

Re:dishonest twat (4, Insightful)

ByOhTek (1181381) | about a year ago | (#42886433)

Not to mention, he is implying that forcibly taking the domain from the group is his only/primary option, whereas they did give him a price (and a not-exorbant, given the circumstances one at that) to take it, or the option of a very large degree of use/control for free.

He's got shreds of honesty, but they are negative valued.

Re:dishonest twat (3, Interesting)

Kenja (541830) | about a year ago | (#42886811)

And lets not forget the whole "rich and famous" part. If it were my name, I would not be able to have done what he did since I am neither rich nor famous. So much for equal protection under the law.

Re:dishonest twat (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42886995)

Dear sir,

I read and enjoyed your article entitled, "In Defense of Squatting & Extortion," and would like to subscribe to your newsletter.

I'll be living on your front porch and demanding money not to peek in your windows until my first issue arrives.

Re:dishonest twat (1)

eagoldman (2836817) | about a year ago | (#42887075)

ICANN is a private, non-profit organization

A "private" organization that's gifted with power by the department of commerce. So that makes it okay. This guy has not got a shred of honesty.

No, not gifted, under contract the same way that the Berkeley National Lab is under contract from DOE.

Does no one followup with facts anymore? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42886361)

If someone accuses someone else of something. (yeah, vague, I know) Shouldn't the accusing party at least have some facts to back the accusations up with? Geesh

which is what Dorner probably said (1)

fermion (181285) | about a year ago | (#42886367)

I did not want to kill all those people, i have to play the hand I was dealt. It is not like I have the ability to just walk away from the table and not interact with agencies I don't agree with. I don't want to gamble, I have to. The government makes me.

Ron Paul is a free individual. He has a choice. No one forces us to do anything. For example, no one has to pay taxes, one just has to have the willingness to live in a way that no taxes or owed, or are willing to do what it takes to avoid it. All of us have choices. The choices may be hard. The only people who say 'we have to play the cards we are dealt' are those that don't want to take responsibility for their choices.

Re:which is what Dorner probably said (1)

tnk1 (899206) | about a year ago | (#42886539)

Thanks for the straw man argument.

This isn't about killing people, it's about using a bureaucratic process.

Contrary to what you believe, there are situations were it is considered perfectly reasonable to use existing processes and work inside the law and current confines, which is something that by remaining a more or less loyal Republican, Ron Paul has always seemed to do.

The ability to accept compromise is directly related to what is at stake. If the result of the compromise is death of parties you would consider entirely innocent, then yes, you open yourself to a very strict view of your consistency, as that is the best way to ensure your views endanger few people as possible. In this case, there is no life and death effects, just more or less efficiency.

Re:which is what Dorner probably said (2)

ByOhTek (1181381) | about a year ago | (#42886689)

But he's using a bureaucratic process he rallies against, while ignoring equally valid/legitimate options within the confines of the processes that he often argues for.

The GP may overstate the seriousness of the issue, but otherwise, he's pretty spot on.

Re:which is what Dorner probably said (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42886609)

Dorner was a delusional sociopath and the world is a better place now that he is gone

Re:which is what Dorner probably said (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42886655)

The only people who say 'we have to play the cards we are dealt' are those that don't want to take responsibility for their choices.

[Emphasis mine]

Fundamental attribution error

The fundamental attribution error describes the tendency to over-value dispositional or personality-based explanations for behavior while under-valuing situational explanations. The fundamental attribution error is most visible when people explain the behavior of others. For example, when a student fails to turn in a homework assignment, a teacher is too ready to assume that the student was too lazy to finish the homework, without sufficiently taking into account the situation that the student was in. [Emphasis mine]

Source: Wikipedia [wikipedia.org]

Re:which is what Dorner probably said (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42886909)

Assuming you are not just trying to prove a personally believed conclusion using fancy language, also look at Argument from fallacy, Denying the Antecedent, Begging the Question. See, you are not the only one that look up stuff on wikipedia!

Re:which is what Dorner probably said (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42887023)

This is not a personal attack. It is not based on personality. It a statement of culture. A statement that even though we live in the freest country in the world, even though we provide the most opportunity to become educated, or innovative, or whatever you want, we still have a group of people who think it is ok to forgo all personal responsibility, all imagination, and just give up and say 'I have no choice'.

For a more eloquent discussion, see this [uh.edu] .

Ron Paul fanboy says what RP is doing is okay (1)

YesIAmAScript (886271) | about a year ago | (#42886423)

Is there any kind of actual story here or just predictable excuses and hair splits about the UN not being involved but actually involved and the UN isn't technically a state anyway, so it's okay?

I didn't go crying to Mommy (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42886439)

I went crying to Daddy.

This Is Beyond Inane & Changes Nothing (5, Insightful)

eldavojohn (898314) | about a year ago | (#42886441)

Okay so I read this rebuttal and I stand by my earlier position [slashdot.org] .

From my understanding, the group made a good faith offering of ronpaul.org to Ron Paul for free but wanted $250,000 for the commercial ronpaul.com in order to recoup the work and effort they put in. On top of that, I see nothing malicious, untruthful, slanderous or libelous on ronpaul.com -- quite the opposite! So this is how capitalism works, I have something you want and I have come to own it by legal means so it doesn't matter if it has your name on it or not. I'm sure they could drum up another person out there named Ron Paul if you want to play that game. Now, with all that said, the only option in a libertarian world is to either pay that sum, get a different URL or tell your followers to stop going to ronpaul.com. Turning to any -- and I mean ANY -- higher power to subvert that desired price is, by definition, appealing to a governing body to impose some form of regulation. And the only reason is to subvert the sale and tendering of cash from your hands to the party who has due ownership and control. Ron Paul says "Property rights are the foundation of all rights in a free society." And this is a directly contradictory action to that maxim whether he is a private citizen or not.

Ron is not using the State to acquire RonPaul.com. He could have brought a lawsuit in US government courts, but he did not.

Just because you use another arm or governing body instead of the official United States government does not mean you aren't using the State.

He is seeking to have ICANN enforce its own rules against cybersquatting, including the rule against registering a famous person’s name and making money off it.

Wait wait wait. I'm confused. You see, you're using the R word and your calling it a "rule" but I think the word that Ron Paul and most libertarians like to use is "regulation" and then they spit because it leaves a dirty taste in their mouth. What is the difference between rules against cybersquatting and government regulation? What is the difference between the New York Times using Ron Paul's name to sell newspapers and this site printing facts about him to make money? This isn't about what is right and wrong, this about the convenience of owning a domain. Ron Paul even has a different official domain, is this site parading around purporting to be the official Ron Paul domain? No? Then what exactly are your allegations?

Anyone registering a URL agrees to keep all the rules, just as he must pay a recurring fee. A URL is not private property in the normal sense. It is a license, and ICANN is a private, non-profit organization.

Wrong, ICANN was created to assume their responsibilities under a United States Department of Commerce contract. Haven't you been following the news where the rest of the world wants the US to give up control of ICANN? They act on the US Government's behalf. And in a libertarian world there would be no rules. Money and the free market would set the rules. In a free market you would have a whole bunch of different DNS registrars and lookup services. You could pick whichever one you liked the best. They would be for sale as entities. Big corporations could just pay them to change their DNS records to point resolution of weaker companies to their websites. When you typed in a URL it could go wherever the money tells it to go and if you don't like that, you might change to OpenDNS or someone else -- if they exist. But everyone has a price in a libertarian world. Rules are regulations and regulations are bad in a libertarian world. End of story. Rules ruin the free market. Regulations ruin capitalism and they are a hallmark of socialism.

Ron is not calling on the UN. ICANN has four approved arbitration organizations. Because the RP.com guys registered Ron's name in Australia, the international arbitration option must be used.

What part of tendering $250,000 in exchange for a domain don't you fucking understand? That option is comparatively government free!

This fight is not about so-called intellectual property, since it involves private agreements. But if it were, must one agree with Murray Rothbard--who discussed IP more than 50 years ago--to be a libertarian? I agree with Murray, but IP is hardly a make or break issue. Certainly Murray did not see it as such. In the same sense, one need not be an anarcho-capitalist to be a libertarian, though, like Murray, I am one. One can be a constitutionalist or otherwise believe in limited government. Oh, and need I note that Murray loved and admired Ron?

I'm sorry, you've lost me here. So some dude I never heard of had a man crush on Ron Paul? That's backing up your argument?

Is Ron "attacking his own supporters" by his action?

Look, dude, this is the last of Libertarian problems. Hell, after reading "The Virtue of Selfishness" by Ayn Rand, I assume all Libertarians attack each other. I've seen Democrats eat their own, I've seen Republicans eat their own, I just think that Libertarians are more open about it. They answer a dog eat dog world by openly consuming each other. In a libertarian world there are no police, just everyone packing heat. So you better have the balls to pull the trigger and inflict your sense of justice. If I ever meet a nice Libertarian that is genuinely concerned for others, full sympathy and overflowing with empathy, I'll eat my hat.

Re:This Is Beyond Inane & Changes Nothing (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42886751)

Who would protect and defend property rights in a libertarian world? Perhaps some sort of body people can turn to?

Rules ruin the market? The market only exists because people agree to its rules.

Re:This Is Beyond Inane & Changes Nothing (1)

Darkness404 (1287218) | about a year ago | (#42886805)

Private law would protect and defend property rights, read some Rothbard.

http://www.lewrockwell.com/rothbard/rothbard133.html [lewrockwell.com]

Re:This Is Beyond Inane & Changes Nothing (1)

MightyYar (622222) | about a year ago | (#42886915)

Of course, none of that could apply to the concept of intellectual property, which is one of the largest examples we have of government intrusion in the free market.

Re:This Is Beyond Inane & Changes Nothing (3, Insightful)

Darkness404 (1287218) | about a year ago | (#42887267)

Which is one of the reasons why intellectual "property" is such an absurd concept.

Every system of property is designed with one thing in mind: Scarcity.

If you take away scarcity, there's no need to have property. If my car could be duplicated infinitely so that anyone who wanted one could have one, imagine filing the police report:

Me: Someone stole my car last night!
Officer: What does your car look like?
Me: Well, I drove it here, so take a look out in the parking lot
Officer: So... Someone stole your car but yet it was there in the morning?
Me: Yes!
Officer: Was any of the gas gone?
Me: No.
Officer: Did the thief take anything?
Me: No.
Officer: Was anything broken or damaged?
Me: No.
Officer: So... what exactly is the crime?
Me: But... they STOLE my car!

The only "IP" worth having is trademarks because it prevents fraud (you can't have two game makers called Nintendo that both use the exact same logo because consumers will consistently be defrauded because there is no way to tell the two different products apart).

Re:This Is Beyond Inane & Changes Nothing (2)

iluvcapra (782887) | about a year ago | (#42887153)

Rothbard's concept of private law was in perfect resonance with his nativism and crypto-racism*. It creates a perfect system where an individual must consent to the prevailing contractual terms for protection of his property and himself, or face the prospect of having no protection at all. In short, you can take or leave the private terms of police protection, but leaving them is tantamount to renouncing your citizenship and becoming stateless. Individuals acting en sole who want protection have no say in negotiating these terms, except for the resources they can use to bargain with. And in these sorts of negotiations, the only useful bargaining resource would be weapons, the capacity to take other people's property.

* I'm sure you're aware that Murray and Lew wrote all of Ron Paul's racist newsletters [reason.com] in a bizarre bid to create "Outreach to the Rednecks," as Rothbard himself called it.

Re:This Is Beyond Inane & Changes Nothing (1)

Bigby (659157) | about a year ago | (#42886889)

The GP is confusing libertarianism with anarchy. Libertarian are FOR government, but only when dealing with force and fraud. So that covers the police and the courts.

Re:This Is Beyond Inane & Changes Nothing (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42886921)

The GP is confusing libertarianism with anarchy. Libertarian are FOR government, but only when dealing with force and fraud. So that covers the police and the courts.

Wrong! From Wikipedia [wikipedia.org] :

Libertarianism is a set of related political philosophies which emphasize individual liberty, political freedom, and voluntary association. They advocate minimizing coercion, including coercion which may be the result of government policy. Libertarians generally advocate a society with a greatly reduced state, and some advocate no state at all.

Do police sound like coercion to you? Does to me! Privatize it!

Re:This Is Beyond Inane & Changes Nothing (1)

dumky2 (2610695) | about a year ago | (#42887169)

As I replied above, libertarians are not against rules, as long as they are voluntary.
You correctly point out that agreement is core to having rules. There are plenty of such rules. For example, no smoking in my house, workplace rules, home owners association rules, club rules, rules of sports, ...
But government rules are different. They are not voluntary, but imposed by a group ranging from one to a minority or even a majority, on the rest.

Regarding your first question, how would property rights be protected, it depends if you ask a minarchist (small constitutional government restricted to police and arbitration services) or an anarchist (no government).
The answer is that nobody knows exactly, just like the soviets did not know how shoes would be produced in absence of government monopoly on shoe production. Another example, how will be pick cotton and make clothes if we repeal slavery (the answer is that people figure it out, invent machines, etc)?
If you are curious, look at "The not so wild Wild West" or "The machinery of freedom", for speculative answers. There are many historical examples of private solutions to security and arbitration services. Every service that government currently monopolizes has been successfully solved and provided privately in the past.

Re:This Is Beyond Inane & Changes Nothing (1)

drsmithy (35869) | about a year ago | (#42887525)

You correctly point out that agreement is core to having rules. There are plenty of such rules. For example, no smoking in my house, workplace rules, home owners association rules, club rules, rules of sports, ...
But government rules are different. They are not voluntary, but imposed by a group ranging from one to a minority or even a majority, on the rest.

I am struggling to see the difference in your examples. They all describe rules being "imposed" by one group on another.

The answer is that nobody knows exactly, just like the soviets did not know how shoes would be produced in absence of government monopoly on shoe production. Another example, how will be pick cotton and make clothes if we repeal slavery (the answer is that people figure it out, invent machines, etc)?

Your assertions are absurd.

Not enough Libertopian novels for you! (4, Insightful)

sirwired (27582) | about a year ago | (#42886773)

If you read the SF novels detailing life in Libertopia, you'll find that, as if by magic, citizens voluntarily donate enough of their income to feed, clothe, and house those that are poor through no fault of their own. They purchase, build, and staff a full parks system out of the goodness of their hearts.

They are willing to lay their lives down, free of charge (and provide weapons and ammo, no less!) for their country/planet/space station. Everybody is cool with the idea that murder is a civil matter to be dealt with by heirs, who will gladly pay for the investigation. (And, by unspoken extension, if you don't have any heirs that like you, your life isn't worth $hit.) As long as you can pay the economic damages for your doings, well, you can pretty much do whatever you want.

Re:Not enough Libertopian novels for you! (1)

Obfuscant (592200) | about a year ago | (#42887263)

If you read the SF novels detailing life in Libertopia, you'll find that, as if by magic, citizens voluntarily donate enough of their income to feed, clothe, and house those that are poor through no fault of their own. They purchase, build, and staff a full parks system out of the goodness of their hearts.

This is how things used to be done.

The fact that it probably won't work today is not because people don't care or don't have a heart. It is because the government has, in very large part, assumed the task of collecting money involuntarily, and people quite naturally think "I'm already paying for the government to do this, why should I pay again?"

You could cancel all government welfare (which includes parks and rec, IMHO) tomorrow, but it would take a long time before people realized that the government wasn't doing it anymore, or since they've grown up under a system where the government did it they think it is a natural function of a government and demand that it start up again.

I suspect even many people who don't think it is a natural function of the government to forcibly take money from people who have so it can be given to those who don't, when faced with a decision for the government to get completely out of the loop would allow the nose of the camel that would result in a return to today's camel in the tent problem. "Oh, well, to make sure that 'group X' is taken care of, the government should do it..." leads to a rapid increase in the number of "group Xs". Or, as deTouqueville says, a democracy lasts only as long as it takes for people to realize they can tax other people to get things they want, or words to that effect.

(The nose of the camel is how income taxes started. "We need them to pay for the war..." See how that turned out? It's how the welfare morass started. It's how every large government system started out. And even today, people keep proposing "small" government programs either completely oblivious to history or deliberately lying about it.)

If you want a current example of the "the government does it, why should I" attitude, listen to any PBS pledge break. (Or just read this and save yourself twenty minutes of your life you'd never get back.) They repeatedly have to remind their potential donors that the government really doesn't pay for PBS and they need to send in their money. "If we don't do it, who will?" (Discovery, The Science Channel, The History Channel, Animal Planet, etc....)

Re:Not enough Libertopian novels for you! (1)

iluvcapra (782887) | about a year ago | (#42887411)

This is how things used to be done.

This is how many countries used to do it, before the people realized that all of their poor people were in thrall to the church, labor union or political movement that was feeding them instead. In Germany, the national health insurance system was developed specifically with the goal of breaking the Social Democratic party, Spain and Italy adopted social insurance systems as anticlerical reforms, among other reasons.

Dumb joke: you know who else fed the poor and gave them work with private donations? Hitler [wikipedia.org] .

Re:Not enough Libertopian novels for you! (2)

jvkjvk (102057) | about a year ago | (#42887613)

>>If you read the SF novels detailing life in Libertopia, you'll find that, as if by magic, citizens voluntarily donate enough of their income to feed, clothe, and house those that are poor through no fault of their own. They purchase, build, and staff a full parks system out of the goodness of their hearts.

>This is how things used to be done.

When? Please come up with a concrete time boxed example of a country doing this. I'm pretty sure that I could look at the details and come up with a more accurate story.

Re:This Is Beyond Inane & Changes Nothing (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42886787)

What part of stealing someone's identity and making money off of it (via the ads on the website) don't YOU UNDERSTAND

If I started a site call walmarts.com and started using the walmart name to attract visitors to me site, do you really think Ron Paul would be supporting my rights to leech off something else?

These guys want $250,000 in exchange for a domain, they website they created IS NOT FOR SALE, nor part of the sale or part of the domain.

$250,000 is a INSANE BLACKMAIL STYLE MONEY GRAB.

Fuck those assholes.

Re:This Is Beyond Inane & Changes Nothing (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42886965)

What part of "Copyright © 2008 - 2016 RonPaul.com. This website is maintained by independent grassroots supporters. It is not paid for, approved or endorsed by Ron Paul." you don't understand?

This site was built not to "attract visitors to me site", it was built by Ron Paul supporters, for Ron Paul supporters and for promoting Ron Paul.

It's like if I built walmarts.com that told people how great is Walmart, where is Walmart nearest to them and why should they do all the shopping there. What would Walmart do then, if Walmart was libertarian?

Re:This Is Beyond Inane & Changes Nothing (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42887147)

It's like if I built walmarts.com that told people how great is Walmart, where is Walmart nearest to them and why should they do all the shopping there. What would Walmart do then, if Walmart was libertarian?

Walmart would tell you they already own walmarts.com and that you're a DNS Hijacker.

They can have "Friendsofronpaul.com" or "FansofRonpaul.com" but I can see why having "RonPaul.com" is a problem for the Ron Paul. Of course, the whole domain issue is a problem for all of the other Ron Pauls in the world. And for everybody else. How can we handle that?

I suggest we demand each person have a unique name assigned to them.

I want Lord Smoked Meats and Fishes.

Re:This Is Beyond Inane & Changes Nothing (0)

Impy the Impiuos Imp (442658) | about a year ago | (#42886795)

Lotsa "Gotcha!" type talk, but at the end of the day ICANN has anti-cybersquatting and othet rules. The rest is courts which, contrary to FUD, Libertarians rely on as one of the core, legitimate features of government.

Would such an organization exist sans government? Some kind of mutual agreements would exist for networking -- it does at hardware and electrical and transport levels.

What are you talking about? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42886813)

The rest is courts which, contrary to FUD, Libertarians rely on as one of the core, legitimate features of government.

Who enforces the court's rules? Who sets the court's rules? Who stops the courts from becoming corrupted? How are these courts paid for? Can I buy this "court" you speak of? If not, why not? Shouldn't that be determined by the free market?

Re:This Is Beyond Inane & Changes Nothing (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42886831)

In the early days of the World Wide Web, someone registered the domain mormon.com and hosted porn on it. Was the LDS Church wrong for having the word Mormon (a common nickname of the Church) associated with this filth? Was the LDS Church (which owns a trademark on the word Mormon) wrong for wanting to control a domain with that name?

Re:This Is Beyond Inane & Changes Nothing (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42887367)

In the early days of the World Wide Web, someone registered the domain mormon.com and hosted porn on it. Was the LDS Church wrong for having the word Mormon (a common nickname of the Church) associated with this filth? Was the LDS Church (which owns a trademark on the word Mormon) wrong for wanting to control a domain with that name?

No, but they make up for that by being wrong in a great many other ways.

Re:This Is Beyond Inane & Changes Nothing (1)

iluvcapra (782887) | about a year ago | (#42886855)

See, your problem is you don't understand libertarianism. Libertarianism requires a minimal government, a government that is forbidden from working on behalf of any social, democratic, or moral good, while demanding the same government manifest near-godlike powers in the defense of property from incursion. And the more peculiar and abstract the property is, like the intellectual property of trademarks, the more godlike and coercive the state becomes.

Re:This Is Beyond Inane & Changes Nothing (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42886897)

a government that is forbidden from working on behalf of any social, democratic, or moral good

Like, protecting people's lives?

while demanding the same government manifest near-godlike powers in the defense of property from incursion. And the more peculiar and abstract the property is, like the intellectual property of trademarks, the more godlike and coercive the state becomes.

So I would pay my government to stop people from pirating the book I wrote but I would have to pay personal security to stop the mugger on the street from taking my life? It all makes sense now!

Re:This Is Beyond Inane & Changes Nothing (2)

dumky2 (2610695) | about a year ago | (#42887029)

I'm confused. You see, you're using the R word and your calling it a "rule" but I think the word that Ron Paul and most libertarians like to use is "regulation"

If you assume that both private rules and government regulations are voluntary, then I understand your confusion. The central concern of libertarians is to restrict civil society to voluntary behaviors based on property rights.
But government is not a voluntary association. Therefore government rules are illegitimate. They are based on coercion (of a king, or a majority, or an influential minority, all of which are bad).
Private organizations are voluntary and therefore their rules are legitimate. For example, no smoking in my house.
So libertarians have nothing against rules, only against non-voluntary rules (government regulations).

Now, clearly government is entangled in the internet. As you point out, ICANN is not a normal private organization. Should Ron Paul not use internet, or not use roads, and abide by the government regulations? This ethical issue has been addressed numerous times.
I can only speculate as to what the internet would look like absent government, or with a constitutional government. But there would certainly be mediation and conflict resolution procedures. Most likely these involve independent third-party arbitration. So the process would likely be similar to what ICANN currently uses, although I doubt the choice of arbitrators would be as today, and I doubt that the rulings would be the same either.
There is no problem with resorting to a higher power (again, I am the owner of my house). The question is who owns the internet, and whether ICANN has legitimacy. That is a worthwhile question, but it is distinct from the above criticism of an individual who does his best to abide by libertarian principles in a statist world.

Re:This Is Beyond Inane & Changes Nothing (1)

scamper_22 (1073470) | about a year ago | (#42887103)

"So this is how capitalism works"

You're confusing the free-market and libertarianism with capitalism.

It's a common thing to think that everything is either a for-profit thing or a government program.
It's a common thing to think everything is either government run and bureaucratically administered or its the wild wild west and there are no police around.

That you don't know the difference between an anarcho-capitalist, a constitutionalist... or any of the other terms and beliefs in between is quite telling. How are you lost?

That's never been the case historically and really is not the case today.

There are cooperatives, mutuals, guilds, registrar bodies, government regulations... and a million other things.

ICANN is the body that deals with domain name registrations. Ultimately, there has to be such a body to handle registrations, whether public or private.

That body has an arbitration process for this purpose of handling disputes which can arise due to trade mark, famous names, offense... whatever

So Ron Paul goes to the body and makes use of that body.

I really don't understand what you have an issue with.

That he chose not to pay 250k and instead went to the body in charge of handling disputes? You cannot escape 'the state' no matter which way you go here. It is 'the state' the grants the license to use the domain name. Paying 250k just means you're still dealing with 'the state'.

I'm not going to pretend to know the legalese of ICANN to know if it should do anything about this. It seems to me, the owners acted in good faith. But that's up to the arbitration process ICANN has in place to handle such things.

What on Earth is wrong with Ron Paul going to the body in charge of registration to make this case?

Ron Paul is Confused (1)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | about a year ago | (#42887213)

is this site parading around purporting to be the official Ron Paul domain? No? Then what exactly are your allegations?

That's exactly the crux of the matter - Ron Paul is acting, and I believe he is confused [billmcgonigle.com] into thinking that he is justified in pursing a trademark claim because last time he pursued a claim over his name he was justified. Ah, hell, I'll just copy the article here (click the link if Slashdot's inability to handle basic Unicode is too uncomfortable):

Ron Paul is Confused on RonPaul.com
Posted by bill_mcgonigle on 2013/02/12

Ron Paul is seeking to own the RonPaul.com domain name, which has been run by some of his supporters since 2007. Those supporters have proposed a package of the domain name and their mailing list [aside: is that in keeping with their privacy policy?] for $250,000 and in response Ron Paul has filed a complaint with the WIPO which handles domain name disputes.

The trouble with this situation is that the Ron Paul supporters are focusing on WIPOâ(TM)s status as a UN organization, because Ron Paul has been vocally opposed to the UN consistently, and they see him as now being hypocritical on the matter. This is the wrong focus for two reasons: first because WIPO has a monopoly on resolution, but more importantly because the hypocrisy is about the core libertarian value of private property, not the UN.

During the primary campaign, individuals opposed to Ron Paulâ(TM)s nomination uploaded a video to YouTube that was in quite poor taste and slapped Ron Paulâ(TM)s name on it. Ron Paul took the stance that this was fraud (it was) and used the Trademark Law as a means to counter the fraud. This is where Ron Paul became confused â" he associated use of his name with Trademark Law, which is now the basis of the WIPO claims.

The error in logic here is the assumption that any use of the Ron Paul name is justifiably actionable under Trademark Law because itâ(TM)s a case of fraud. This is not the case, clearly, for RonPaul.com. The only argument against RonPaul.com is that the name âoeRon Paulâ is the Intellectual (aka Imaginary) Property of Ron Paul.

So, hereâ(TM)s where it gets dicey â" Imaginary Property is a direct affront on the principle of private ownership of property (it restricts the arrangement of private property of the People to the benefit of the one), which is the foundation of modern Libertarian thought. Now, the Constitution of the United States authorized the use of Imaginary Property monopolies through the Copyrights and Patents process, but this has proven subject to rampant abuse to the degree that it does more harm than good. And it was clear in Ron Paulâ(TM)s farewell address that he had found the Constitution lacking in its ability to restrain the governmentâ(TM)s abuses, if not in its intent. The Constitution doesnâ(TM)t even authorize trademark protection â" that has to be inferred through the Commerce Clause and the minarchist view of governmentâ(TM)s role to prevent fraud.

What Ron Paul is effectively saying here, probably unconsciously, is that the RonPaul.com folks may not organize their articles (their property) in the way that they see fit (under the RonPaul.com label) when they have committed no acts of aggression towards Ron Paul (quite the opposite â" they contributed to his current status in society). Heâ(TM)s literally saying that the RonPaul.com domain belongs to him because he wants it, and the notion of Imaginary Property gives cover to this illusion (it must be remembered that government abuses exist because each individual holds on to that one function of government that they cannot let go of). This is an assault on the private property rights of the people at RonPaul.com (stop being anonymous, guys, it does not help your image), and, yes, he is using government force to back his aggression.

Itâ(TM)s a zero-sum game when a Free Market solution is so painfully obvious: host a money bomb. The RonPaul.com folks have helped promote Ron Paul Moneybombs in the past, and achieving a $250K level has never been even a little bit difficult. Ron Paul can promote the money bomb himself, leading to an even greater chance of success. No Ron Paul supporter will deny that owning the RonPaul.com domain will be beneficial to Ron Paul, deny that Ron Paul still has important work to do, or deny that the RonPaul.com folks have a valuable asset that theyâ(TM)ve created and that the pricing mechanism is a superior method for transferring ownership of resources than government force.

Forget that the UN is even involved in this dispute â" the real scandal is that government-based coercion is being used as aggression (in the absence of fraud) when a Free Market solution is plainly available and achievable. If Ron Paul persists and succeeds with a WIPO claim, his use of the domain will be forever tainted by the decidedly non-libertarian means of its acquisition. If Ron Paul can be made to see that there is no fraud involved here and that the initial aggression is in the form of the IP claim, I believe he will abandon the unjustified means and embrace a peaceful settlement. This principled action will return benefits to the movement he kindled for years to come.

Put the straw man away (2, Informative)

xda (1171531) | about a year ago | (#42886477)

He isn't trying to change legislation to get ownership of the domain. You can't call someone a hypocrite for following the same rules everyone else is currently following. This is a typical straw man argument against a libertarian minded politician. Create some questionable libertarian standard and then say that they aren't following it.

I'm not an expert in intelectual property law but I he might have a good case and he would be a fool not to at least try to get ownership of RonPaul.com. This isn't a case of some other guy named Ron Paul who had the site first. This is a case of individuals making money from a website dedicated to Ron Paul and in my layman's opinion it isn't totally absurd to question if Ron Paul himself has any legal advantage in this situation.

Re:Put the straw man away (4, Insightful)

1u3hr (530656) | about a year ago | (#42886545)

You can't call someone a hypocrite for following the same rules everyone else is currently following.

Yes you can, if it's something he has said was morally wrong.

Re:Put the straw man away (1)

xda (1171531) | about a year ago | (#42886865)

I am a bit of a Ron Paul fan I have never heard him say anything specifically regarding domain name ownership.

Re:Put the straw man away (4, Informative)

Darkness404 (1287218) | about a year ago | (#42886743)

Except he should have done it 5 bloody years ago when they first started the site. He should have registered the domain names himself (or not let them expire). He should have negotiated with the owners for the domain names. Instead, he waits until a community is established and he can get no further benefit from the people who did the grassroots support of his 2 presidential campaigns and then uses the state (rather than private law, or you know, capitalism) to size the domain. Yes, Ron Paul is a hypocrite, yes he's acting like an absolute ass, yes he most likely has the legal advantage, but that doesn't change the fact that this is morally wrong.

Re:Put the straw man away (1)

xda (1171531) | about a year ago | (#42886899)

I get what you are saying, but here is the thing. If you (RonPaul.com) start a business solely based on the promotion of another person without formalizing a legal contract with that other person and don't expect any trouble further down the road... then it is YOU who does not understand capitalism and you should probably just get a job somewhere because you aren't suited to run a business.

Re:Put the straw man away (1)

Darkness404 (1287218) | about a year ago | (#42886991)

Except that isn't capitalism (at least not in the Libertarian/Anarcho-Capitalist sense of the word).

There are two questions to ask yourself in a capitalist society on whether something is acceptable those are:

A) Does it involve force? (such as theft, murder, rape, etc.)

B) Does it involve fraud? (such as saying your food is 100% beef but ends up being 100% horsemeat)

Neither of these are applicable in this sense. In no way did the owners of ronpaul.com use force, nor did they use fraud (they clearly indicate it is a fan site).

Since it doesn't involve force or fraud, such a site would be perfectly legal in a true capitalist economy, and anyone who considers themselves a capitalist should embrace them as the only two determinants to determine whether a business is acceptable.

No change (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42886485)

Title should still read:

"Libertarian unwilling to pay market value for property, asks for government help."

All the semantic wrangling in the world can't get you out of the fact that Ron Paul is going to have to realize that his infantile political philosophy just doesn't work in the real world.

Re:No change (1)

MightyYar (622222) | about a year ago | (#42886971)

"Libertarian unwilling to pay market value for property, asks for government help."

This is not property in the libertarian sense. This is intellectual property, which is by definition arbitrated by the government. You cannot have a free market solution for a government invention. There is no way for Ron Paul to navigate the world of IP without interacting with some kind of government-enabled entity.

Re:No change (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42887577)

Yeah there is. He was offered a price, which he refused. Not much more free market than that :)

Re:No change (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42887631)

Domain names aren't intellectual property. They're a license granted by a private organization. No one is forcing him to use their networking services.

Re:No change (1)

moeinvt (851793) | about a year ago | (#42887133)

The "real world" has burdened us with institutions which may be antithetical to our basic beliefs, but are essential for carrying out many basic functions.

For example, government has used its power to shape the transportation infrastructure and exert monopoly control over most of it. Do I use government roads? Yes. Why? Because government killed off any significant competition in transportation ~100 years before I was born.

Even die-hard libertarians recognize the need for some sort of arbitration system. ICANN (non-government) has decided to turn over disputes like this one to a UN-based arbitration system. It's not like Ron Paul has a parallel system available, just like we don't have a choice of using private sector roads.

Re:No change (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42887231)

May we use this same standard to judge Democrat politicians who take advantage of all kinds of tax breaks, loopholes, and the tax-favored status of investments, while mouthing the tender bromide that "the rich oughta pay their fair share," as well?

I mean, I'm sure Nancy Pelosi & Harry Reid would be exempt from this criticism, and the only reason they refuse to release their tax returns is because they don't want to make all the other rich people feel bad about how much more money Reid & Pelosi pay in taxes out of the goodness of their hearts and love for helping "the little people."

But I'm sorry - what was that you were saying about infantile political philosophies, again?

Re:No change (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42887683)

I must say it warms the cockles of my heart to finally be reading some real sense about libertarianism around here. Even if those of I'd who see through the bullshit are still in the minority in the US I thank you. Let's hope this is the beginning of the end for this insane ideology and that it can be laid to rest next to history's other failed extremist ideologies like communism.

Supernatural repercussions (1)

paiute (550198) | about a year ago | (#42886589)

Ayn Rand would be rolling in her grave if Cheney and the Koch brothers hadn't dug her corpse up in 1981 and made it into a tasty stew which they consumed with a fine bottle of Chianti.

Re:Supernatural repercussions (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42886749)

I think Rand is doing plenty of rolling with the Atlas Shrugged Part III movie going to promote religion in John Galt's speech.

Most of this narrative (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42886605)

Has come from those that think any non-progressive that uses any government program or any reliance on court-enforced contract or drives on the roads is a hypocrite.

It is not particularly fair and doesn't even fairly characterize Dr Paul's position or a libertarian position.

Just like a lot of lefts response to Rand's speech that avoided the rule-of-law on drones or civil rights where it might have conflicted with the Obama is great vs Republicans are ignorant racists with dry throats narrative.

Lots of important stuff to talk about but all we get from the media is the framing of a now-continuous campaign season.

Really... (3, Informative)

Darkness404 (1287218) | about a year ago | (#42886661)

Ron Paul is in the wrong here for a number of reasons.

A) He should have not let that domain expire in the first place. The way I see it, he decided not to renew those domains, some supporters registered it and started a website promoting his campaign.

B) He failed to even ASK the guys for their domain name until after they'd built up a huge community.

C) The guys owning Ronpaul.com/Ronpaul.org even offered to just give him ronpaul.org. The next thing you know, he just hits them with a UN letter.

This is really a dick move by Ron Paul (and I say this as a proud Anarcho-Capitalist/Libertarian and a supporter of his presidential campaigns).

Re:Really... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42887087)

He's running for president since 1988, how long does it take for that moron to take a hint...?

Re:Really... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42887331)

I say this as a proud Anarcho-Capitalist/Libertarian and a supporter of his presidential campaigns

TL;DR "I'm twelve years old".

He should have registered it first (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42886673)

He should have registered the domain first.

Now he need to take his own capitalist medicine and pay the people who have owned it since 2000, what they're asking for it.

And seriously, letting it sit through several presidential campaigns means he doesn't find actual value in it.

Re:He should have registered it first (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42886877)

letting it sit through several presidential campaigns means he doesn't find actual value in it.

He didn't let it sit. They carried his water and helped him out. Since Ron Paul supporters are rare as hen's teeth, this was worth a huge amount.

I think we now know what veteran's "benefits" would look like in a Paul administration.

Indirect doesn't count? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42886799)

"Is Ron "attacking his own supporters" by his action? Apparently, the RP.com people have never given a dime to any of his campaigns nor educational efforts."

First of all, how is that apparent? And do indirect contributions not count? Or is he trying to say that the holders of RP.com were lying when they said they organized or encouraged fundraising efforts on behalf of RP? Should the holders of RP.com have taken money themselves and then given it to RP instead of encouraging people to donate directly to RP? I can't imagine that would have been preferable.

"Yes, it is associated with the UN... The UN itself is not involved..."

So, the UN is not invovled, it's just an organization that wouldn't exist without the UN and only has any arbiting power becausae of the UN. But it's not really involved with the UN. Right. Just because this isn't going to be voted by the security council doesn't mean the UN isn't involved. You might as well make the argument that the USPS is merely "associated" with the federal government.

Libertarian take on cybersquatting? (3, Interesting)

ljw1004 (764174) | about a year ago | (#42886817)

I'd love to read a libertarian take on "cybersquatting". I can't even define the notion of cybersquatting without involving government or human rights.

Here's my attempt at a libertarian definition of cybersquatting. Cybersquatting is when you enter into a private contract with a party to be listed in their directory under the name "X", and someone else claims that they "ought" themselves to be the ones who are listed under that name. Okay, that's fine, but a libertarian wouldn't recognize this "ought" and so no claim of cybersquatting would have any basis for a libertarian.

Here's my attempt at a statist definition of cybersquatting. The state or superstate recognizes that individuals have an interest in their own identities, and companies in their own brands, and it creates a framework of regulations to protect those interests, and it delegates the authority to do this, and it coerces people through threat of force to abide by that authority. Cybersquatting is when someone breaks the state's regulations in this regard."

So please, to any libertarians -- can you give me a purely libertarian explanation of why cybersquatting is wrong?

(or will you merely give an explanation of why this particular RP.com situation has contravened the arbitrary rules set by ICANN, while admitting that an alternative ICANN2 without such rules would be entirely fine from a libertarian perspective? How would free market forces chose between ICANN as it currently is, vs ICANN2 without those rules?)

Re:Libertarian take on cybersquatting? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42886881)

No different than land speculation. I don't think libertarians have anything against that.

Re:Libertarian take on cybersquatting? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42887671)

No different than land speculation. I don't think libertarians have anything against that.

It depends.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Geolibertarianism

Re:Libertarian take on cybersquatting? (1)

MightyYar (622222) | about a year ago | (#42887025)

So please, to any libertarians -- can you give me a purely libertarian explanation of why cybersquatting is wrong?

Well, it relies upon the government creation of intellectual property. I can only think of one larger example of government regulation, and that is the corporation.

Once you accept the concept of intellectual property, the rules are completely arbitrary. There is no moral case to be made for working within the existing rules, or even for seeking to change the rules. In this case, there is a whole dispute resolution process set up for exactly this sort of thing.

Re:Libertarian take on cybersquatting? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42887203)

Nice answer, but what does it have to do with the question?

I don't even think domain names are included in usual definitions of IP. Please, go and reread the second paragraph of OP. It's a contract to include a domain name in a directory, that's it.

Trademarks, on the other hand, are IP. And Ron Paul declares that he should override the contract for RonPaul.com because he owns the name "Ron Paul". In other words, he's the one bringing in the IP in the debate and demanding to protect his intellectual property.

Re:Libertarian take on cybersquatting? (1)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | about a year ago | (#42887241)

So please, to any libertarians -- can you give me a purely libertarian explanation of why cybersquatting is wrong?

If cybersquatters are engaged in fraud ("Welcome to the Ford Motor Company's website. We've filed bankruptcy and have discontinued the site"), that's prior aggression, so it's wrong.

Otherwise it's simply a matter of who holds a potentially valuable asset and what price the market will bear for that asset.

Re:Libertarian take on cybersquatting? (2)

ljw1004 (764174) | about a year ago | (#42887427)

If cybersquatters are engaged in fraud ("Welcome to the Ford Motor Company's website. We've filed bankruptcy and have discontinued the site"), that's prior aggression, so it's wrong.

However, it's the visitors to the site who would be the ones being defrauded. Not Ron Paul himself.

Re:Libertarian take on cybersquatting? (1)

BCoates (512464) | about a year ago | (#42887393)

Cybersqatting might or might not be "wrong", but "wrong" doesn't have anything to do with either private rules or government laws.

I'm not even clear where the government gets involved in this at all, for good or for ill.

Domain registrars accept money to list someone as the owner of a domain name. ICANN coordinates this action, approving registrars and setting some ground rules for how registration works. Most ISPs and site operators configure their networks to resolve non-local names only via ICANN approved channels. These entities are often all private sector corporations acting in voluntary cooperation with no particular government powers.

One of the rules ICANN set up is that you can't register a famous person's name and use the site to run a website about them without the person's permission. They require registrars to follow that rule or they won't approve them. If a registrar allows the registration anyway, there's a dispute process where the person can demand that the rule breaking registration be de-listed and then re-registerd as owned by the person.

Human rights and government and property interests don't come into it, it's a bunch of administrative policy used to coordinate voluntary action. It might work well or it might not. If you don't like the rules you don't have to use ICANN-rule-following DNS servers.

Re:Libertarian take on cybersquatting? (1)

FCAdcock (531678) | about a year ago | (#42887615)

>>So please, to any libertarians -- can you give me a purely libertarian explanation of why cybersquatting is wrong?

Because it's rude.

Entrepreneurial Fail (1)

X0fl1b (2409184) | about a year ago | (#42886891)

The saddest part of this situation is that Dr, Paul could very easily recoup the acquisition cost. 250k for 170k marks seems like a bargain to me.

One useful thing should come out of this. (2)

runeghost (2509522) | about a year ago | (#42886903)

It ought to make it easier to separate the honest libertarians, those who sincerely hold to their beliefs on the free market, from the Paul cultists who just believe whatever their idol(s) are saying today.

Polititian (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42886967)

Politician, n.:
                From the Greek "poly" ("many") and the French "tete" ("head" or
"face," as in "tete-a-tete": head to head or face to face). Hence
"polytetien", a person of two or more faces.
                                -- Martin Pitt

"Cyberspace" revisited. (1)

mosb1000 (710161) | about a year ago | (#42887365)

The problem here is that people fail to realize that the internet isn't a preexisting place, but rather it is system build and operated by people. Those people need to be able to set rules, such as prohibiting cybersquatting, in order to continue to offer a useful service. If someone types in RonPaul into their browser, they are probably looking for Ron Paul's website. Sending them to a fan site or a site belonging to someone else degrades the quality of the service.

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