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Milton Friedman on conspiracy theories

"Let me emphasize, the problems that have arisen for us have not come from evil people who were trying in conspiracy or anything like that to enslave us. That hasn’t been our problem. Our problems have arisen from good people who were trying to do good, but trying to do good in a fundamentally flawed way."

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well that paragraph is a

well that paragraph is a bunch of BS!

A prudent man foresees the difficulties ahead and prepares for them; the simpleton goes blindly on and suffers the consequences. Proverbs 22:3
Matthew 10:34 Think not that I am come to
send peace on earth: I came not to send peace,
but a sword.

A prudent man foresees the difficulties ahead and prepares for them; the simpleton goes blindly on and suffers the consequences. Proverbs 22:3
Matthew 10:34 Think not that I am come to
send peace on earth: I came not to send peace,
but a sword.

That's a real hoot. LOL Good

That's a real hoot. LOL Good people, really?

People aren't good because others say they are good, actions are the only indicator, I mean personal actions.

When you think of a "good" person what characteristics do you think of?

I think of honesty. Try throwing a bucket full of honesty on these criminals, they would melt like Dorothy's witch.

You think these people are public servants because of the paycheck? You think they will honestly tell you how they make the lions share of their money?

Look at the crap they're handing us to live under...been doing it for decades...they don't read the junk, they don't write the junk and they are so honest they have to argue about whether we should have a right to read the raw sewage before it gets dumped on us. After the debate they will honestly tell us we don't have the right to read their drivel and remind us, in all their conjured up humility, that they know what's best.

Dishonest, self-serving, delusional ego maniacs don't fit my definition of "good".

It's important at this juncture to point out that Ron Paul is none of the above and that's why he has my deepest respect and admiration.

Miamisburg, Montgomery County, Ohio

Well, I'm pretty sure

that the cabal commonly called the NWO thinks they are doing what's "good" for themselves.
Whether that might not be "good" for anybody else probably doesn't cross their minds much.
So,what's "good" in some people's minds may be a horror in others'.

When GWB said, "You're either with US, or your with the terrorists", what did he mean by "us"?
Did he mean "us", as in the "American people"?
Or, did he mean "us",as in "him and his buddies"?

It's easy to ascribe evil as stupidity or ignorance, and vice versa.
However, stupidity generally comes in fits and spurts, intermixed with some non-stupidity, not a 100+ year long trend in a particular direction.
So, to me a 100+ year long trend in a particular direction, obviates the "stupidity" factor, and leaves "something else" as the likely answer.
Call it a "conspiracy" if you wish, or any other name that you think fits.

The problems Friedman so

The problems Friedman so often spoke about were interventist problems, anti-laissez faire. Like wage & price controls, earned income tax credits, job training programs, The Great Society, on and on. And of course, he's right. My life's history has been lived amidst do-gooders from colleagues to neighbors to relatives. My best friend in my mid-20s spoke often of the pursuit of profits as 'corporate greed.' He wasn't evil.

"I'm just looking for opportunities to turn things around philosophically. College students love to hear about personal liberty and personal freedom and personal choices and, of course, this whole idea of getting our troops home, they're very receptive."

10-15 million more voters need to believe in non-interventionism (liberty) at home and abroad to change America. Minds changed on Syria. Minds changing on privacy. "Printing money" is part of the dialogue. Win minds through focus, strategy.




naivete' being expressed in this thread. Hopefully that is all it is.

Ignorance of history, ignorance of human nature; particularly the nature of those driven to seek power.

Also, perhaps some "projection"(hate to use that, hate psycho-babble labels), projecting ones own thoughts, feelings and motivations on others.

Obama well meaning, any politico well meaning? Who knows, these people are complete strangers to us. Complete strangers that have millions of dollars to spend and hundreds of experts working to make them appear concerned and well meaning to the masses. Well meaning, maybe, but the odds based on history are not good.

More damage is done by the well intentioned?

When a meglomanical psychopath is directly responsible for the deaths of 50 million people was it caused by the well intentioned if the psychopath means well in his evil mind?

That type scenario has played out countless times in recorded history. In the 20th century it played out 3 times in a BIG way.

Another good one, expressed on the Daily Paul no less.

Paraphrasing-It is not bad or evil when most people, as most are wont to do, use collective influence to get good stuff for free at the expense of those that shun getting things they haven't earned. It is not bad or evil because they do not mean to hurt anyone.

?? WOW!

"You are a den of vipers and thieves."

I mean to rout you out!

-Just because you are among us, does not make you with us

-The door is wide open, anything can slither in

but the meglomaniac doesn't do things themselves

They use peoples good intentions against them. Like Buffy St Marie says in Universal soldier - Hilter could not have murdered all those people himself, he had the complicity of good intentioned people.

Healthcare for all - a good intention, its the way they are trying to acheive that which will cause the unintended consequences.

We will

have to agree to disagree on this one-ironman77. If we ever have an opportunity to discuss this at length in person, some RP gathering perhaps, we could both provide our support for our positions. Would take too much bandwidth here. I understand your valid point. Perhaps that is correct. I do not know with certainty but I believe the majority of the blame falls to those that initiate and guide such things, those that can actually pull the strings and those directly responsible for putting particular fingers to particular strings.

"You are a den of vipers and thieves."

I mean to rout you out!

-Just because you are among us, does not make you with us

-The door is wide open, anything can slither in

Atrickpay is naive, Carlin

Atrickpay is naive, Carlin is a troll(although in a sick way his definition of evil does sort of justify the actions of his precious Faux news).

Ventura 2012

Glad you

called the T a T-BB-Thanks. Spotted it when it rolled in a short time ago and have been playing with it since. Didn't want to use the T word tho because I am really trying to play nicer.

"You are a den of vipers and thieves."

I mean to rout you out!

-Just because you are among us, does not make you with us

-The door is wide open, anything can slither in

And what's your problem?

What's your excuse?

Your right whatever

it is, it's dangerous to ignore.

Prepare & Share the Message of Freedom through Positive-Peaceful-Activism.

I don't equate being "bad" with being evil.

People that are not evil often to bad things.

Well then you make a good example as to why there is some

need, for some people, to be dissuaded from their "inclinations" by what has been called "Midieval Crowd Control".

"You are a den of vipers and thieves."

I mean to rout you out!

-Just because you are among us, does not make you with us

-The door is wide open, anything can slither in


I'm not saying that if someone aggresses against someone without evil intent that it should be allowed. It should be illegal. I'm a libertarian. I'm for minimal government, where initiation of force and fraud are minimized as much as possible.

I'm just making a philosophical point on the nature of evil.

I am saying your philosophical point is flawed

at best. More appropriately it is a creative, selective sense of right and wrong, good and evil that is conveniently self-serving.

Without much guidance a typical four year old knows that they are not supposed to do things like sneaking cookies from the cookie jar. Yet there are few four year olds that have not given in to actions like that. They know it is wrong yet they still do it.

Four year olds ignoring what they know to be "wrong" to get what they want is easily understood and rightly not taken too seriously.

Adults rationalizing adults doing the same, doing wrong because they were tempted, because they "wanted it", because they "meant no harm" is a dangerous philosophy to promote. We already know a large percentage of "adults" cannot control their impulses, cannot confine them to actions that cause no harm to others. Providing philosophic cover to those that will satisfy any selfish whim regardless of known (or should be known) consequences to others is in polar conflict with the purposes of our movement. The recklessly selfish do not need additional aid. It is the thoughtful that could use a break from the onslaught of the willfully thoughtless w/ insatiable appetites and insufficient or unwilling means.

What sadly but naturally occurs in high percentages has also been given mass conditioning encouragement for a long time. Please consider not adding further encouragement.

"You are a den of vipers and thieves."

I mean to rout you out!

-Just because you are among us, does not make you with us

-The door is wide open, anything can slither in

You're not getting my point.

Me not saying that a person that committed some given crime is not evil, is not the same thing as saying they did not do something wrong.

My point is that an evil person does something wrong BECAUSE it's wrong. The intent itself is evil. The non-evil criminal does something wrong as a mere means to an end.

The term "evil" should be reserved for the most reprehensible of all acts, and the most reprehensible acts are those that are done with the INTENTION of causing human suffering. A person that robs you solely for the purpose of enriching himself is not evil. A person that robs you for the purpose of causing you to suffer is evil. See the difference?

If you throw the term "evil" around too liberally, to mean any time someone does something wrong it loses it's usefulness. To go around calling everyone "evil" that has done something wrong or supports government intervention where you don't "evil" is ridiculous. Doing something wrong does not make a person evil.

I'm not providing "philosophic cover" to anybody. A person that robs another should be arrested and go to jail, regardless of what his intent was.

Now we know that a rapist

Now we know that a rapist who rapes for personal pleasure (not to harm the other person) is not evil.

At the end of the day, this is a pointless semantic argument(brought up by you) that is out of sync with what the majority would probably agree is the right definition. I'll take the blame for taking the bait.

Ventura 2012

I would argue that

that rapist who is raping solely for physical pleasure is not evil. He's just a vile and disgusting person with no regard for the rights of women. A rapist who rapes to obtain pyschological pleasure from causing the woman to suffer, pleasure in the fact of violating her rights, is evil.

Great quote. Thank you.

Great quote. Thank you. But prepared to be hammered.
A recent history of the US economy - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wzze9xCPuok

This is very interesting

the do gooder and the evil doer. They have the same effect. I think there is both types. I think there are people who want to save the world and save you from yourself and don't mind forcing it on you. There is also the evil doer who knows what he is doing when he does it and doesn't mind eliminating anyone who stands in his way. Both types of people have been a pain in our rears and we must stand up to both types.

Prepare & Share the Message of Freedom through Positive-Peaceful-Activism.

The Conspiracy Theory of

The Conspiracy Theory of History Revisited

by Murray Rothbard


Let us take an easy example. Suppose we find that Congress has passed a law raising the steel tariff or imposing import quotas on steel? Surely only a moron will fail to realize that the tariff or quota was passed at the behest of lobbyists from the domestic steel industry, anxious to keep out efficient foreign competitors. No one would level a charge of "conspiracy theorist" against such a conclusion. But what the conspiracy theorist is doing is simply to extend his analysis to more complex measures of government: say, to public works projects, the establishment of the ICC, the creation of the Federal Reserve System, or the entry of the United States into a war. In each of these cases, the conspiracy theorist asks himself the question cui bono? Who benefits from this measure? If he finds that Measure A benefits X and Y, his next step is to investigate the hypothesis: did X and Y in fact lobby or exert pressure for the passage of Measure A? In short, did X and Y realize that they would benefit and act accordingly?

Ventura 2012

I don't think that's talking about the same idea.

A conspiracy to try to influence public policy in order to make money, I wouldn't call "evil." It's what most people would do if they had the chance. A person might vote for a politician because he's promising taxing the rich in order to give him a social program. There may be a conspiracy of people pushing to raise the minimum wage. There is a conspiracy of poor people all around the country pushing for socialized healthcare. In the same way, a businessman will try to influence what laws that keep other businesses from competing with him. But I wouldn't call them evil. They're not trying to hurt people. They're just people that want to use government in order to get something for nothing. Their goal is not to hurt people, even though they do hurt people in the pursuit of their actual goal which just just to get free stuff. An evil person hurts people just for the sake of hurting them. That's where the Alex Jones-type conspiracy theorists go wrong, thinking that there are elites conspiring to kill them or enslave them just for the hedonistic satisfaction of it. I think at the worst, people who seek to influence law to get free benefits are trying to ignore that it might hurt people in order to protect their conscience. They're not evil.

"A conspiracy to try to

"A conspiracy to try to influence public policy in order to make money, I wouldn't call "evil." "

I would call it evil. There is a HUGE portion of of voters than do not do this(or at least intend to do this). Most of the support for socialized medicine is done altruisitically by rich liberals who want to help poor people. Stealing money through the state for PERSONAL and not PUBLIC benefit is evil. The people who lobbied for war to line their coffers are evil.

I don't ascribe to the Alex Jones theory of eugenics and all that, but I will say that a lot of the people on top are simply common criminals(just listen to the LBJ and Nixon recordings). While it is true that there might a idealistic notion behind the "anything to get World Government" endgame for the globalists, nothing can excuse their methods.

Ventura 2012

I disagree that common criminals are evil.

I think evil would be a criminal that steals from someone just for the sake of making that person poorer, just for sake of causing someone else suffering.

The common criminal, whether a white collar criminal, or the mugger on the street is not evil. His goal is simply to enrich himself. The fact that the way he's going about it hurts people, he's either indifferent to it or tries to push it out of his mind so as not offend his conscience. The guy that breaks into houses to steal Christmas presents isn't doing it to hurt the children of that family. He's doing it to get free stuff. Have you ever stolen anything in your life, perhaps as child? It's not out of evil. Very few people are evil - causing suffering just for the sake of causing suffering.

haha wow, then we won't get

haha wow, then we won't get anywhere because I have a fundamental disagreement with you on this. Remind me not to invest in "Carlin-Equities".

Ventura 2012

With that entre


Interesting company-that is one item of many

"You are a den of vipers and thieves."

I mean to rout you out!

-Just because you are among us, does not make you with us

-The door is wide open, anything can slither in

So you think everyone in jail now

that robbed someone is evil?

I think you misuse the word "evil." You trivialize it, such that it includes everyone who has ever committed a crime.

I think that if they were

I think that if they were going to starve to death for some reason that was out of their control, then they are not evil. However, if they took the lazy way out and stole stuff, they are evil. That doesn't mean that there is no redemption, I am all about forgiveness. People who unapologetically commit crimes for a living are evil.

Ventura 2012

Well, Friedman is using the word "evil"

in a more appropriate way I think.

He says: "evil people who were trying in conspiracy or anything like that to enslave us." See, the goal would be to enslave us as an end in itself. That would be evil.

I try to reserve the word "evil" for more sinister things than you.