89 votes

Tom Woods Video: The Problem of the Libertarian Moocher

I demand everything for free, says the libertarian moocher. Tom Woods responds.

http://youtu.be/pIVEdMyv2Tg



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Just gotta get used to him

The more I have listened to the other guy the more I appreciate his style. It takes a bit to get used to. ...Sort of like when I started listening to lectures by Hans-Hermann Hoppe I could only take about 5 minutes then I had to turn it off and retreat back to a Tom Woods lecture. I have since gotten past that initial stage and Hoppe has become one of my very favorite speakers to listen to.

I have gotten to really like the instructor and I love the order of the lectures - how he goes through how everything would work in a free market and then in the later lectures goes through exactly how it works now, with our mixed economy. He does a great job and I FINALLY much better understand interest rates and how they would in a free market, for some reason I just couldn't fully wrap my brain around it till I heard it from him. I also now have a much better understanding of central banks (and how damaging they are). He goes through all of the main Keynesian objections and helps you understand why the Keynesian arguments are incorrect as well as give you rebuttals that you can use yourself when others try to use them.

I haven't touched on the history ones yet but I expect they are awesome, considering before Liberty Classroom I listened to all of Wood's Politically Incorrect Guide to American History lecture series and learned a ton.

It is a lethal duo against any statist to not only understand correct economics, but understand history as well.

No one can find a safe way out if society is sweeping towards destruction. Everyone,in his own interests, must thrust himself vigorously into the intellectual battle. None can stand aside with unconcern; the interests of everyone hang on the result. - LvM

Agreed and thanks!

Agreed and thanks!

TY for sharing your experience

So far, it seems to be ivy league lessons for less than a state run community college price!

Debbie's picture

Yes! I have joined too and I love it. It's much more than just

trying to "study it all yourself".

Debbie

All things have it's time and place

This is not productive. Alienating people that you don't respect in a public forum for liberty is agist the grain. Take it elsewhere.

I vote you down sir. We need every last mooch & rich bitch - everyone.

Calling out an action which

Calling out an action which is disrespectful and inherently incoherent with the libertarian philosophy is a good thing. Profits are to be respected.

Mises.org
Know your stuff, learn real history and economics @LibertyClassroom.com

Mooching...

I've been surprised to see this within our movement as well. I think perhaps some of us have a different definition of the term "free markets." I wish Tom didn't feel he had to defend himself, his products and others who provide valuable services to us within the liberty movement.

For those who think everything should be free: Do you really think your "free" public education was really free? Would you dedicate your life, your time and your efforts for no compensation whatsoever? Will you turn down your next promotion or pay increase or forgo payment at all? If all was free, why would people dedicate a decade to be a doctor or professor as opposed to just being a mooch? Think about it.

Personally, I think people of this thought probably don't have much in the way of means and they're bitter/jealous because of it. Yet, they probably also don't seriously apply themselves to much in life. The people who have means in this world spend 40-75% of their time creating their wealth. It's your choice in life. Money is a means to an end and you'll either apply yourself to see those ends or you won't.

Well said. In the end,

Well said. In the end, nothing in life is free. There is always a price, even if it isn't in dollars and cents.

Besides

The service is worth every penny IMO. The guy who teaches the econ course has answered every question I have ever had plus ones I didn't even realize I had.

No one can find a safe way out if society is sweeping towards destruction. Everyone,in his own interests, must thrust himself vigorously into the intellectual battle. None can stand aside with unconcern; the interests of everyone hang on the result. - LvM

im

gonna assume this is another attempt to sell ur stupid classes. I'll sell u a subscription to wikipedia for $10. hope this comment doesn't get censored like other comments that critizice your product.

BMWJIM's picture

You must be a RSALM!

(Real Sore Ass Libertarian Moocher). I also don't believe a ignorant ass should be censored either. This way EVERYONE can see you are a JERK!

Semper Fi! ASSHAT!

Jim

1976-1982 USMC, Having my hands in the soil keeps me from soiling my hands on useless politicians.

lol

go ahead and buy into scams. it's your money to waste. like i said, I'll sell u a subscription to wikipedia for $10.

This isn't a Communist

This isn't a Communist website, sorry. Selling things is not a bad thing.

ecorob's picture

won't censor you...

just vote you down where you belong!

its 'cos I owe ya, my young friend...
Rockin' the FREE world in Tennessee since 1957!
9/11 Truth.

I wonder

If this video was made in response to the thread that was posted yesterday.

Un-opened letter to Judge Napolitano
http://www.dailypaul.com/241507/un-opened-letter-to-judge-na...

It is now a 403 page.

The OP was moaning about the judge wanting X amount of money for speaking at some grassroots event, or something like that and he basically wanted the judge to donate his time for free.

Bloody Moocher!

“I have joined your revolution and I’m proud to be part of what you want to do.” - Ron Paul

Point well taken, Tom.

Really, who likes a moocher of any sort? His venting sort of tickled me tho, he must have run into a whopper of a Libertarian Moocher - oh, wait, that's an oxymoron. Yeah. I can see how that would piss off a true Libertarian.

"If you want something you've never had before, you have to do something you've never done before." Debra Medina

reedr3v's picture

bump for a righteous scolding;

thanks Tom.

Actually, at least he's

Actually, at least he's honest. I don't know what else Tom has going on, but there are potential swindlers like Luke Rudkowski out there who looks like he uses 9/11 truth donations to party. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FqE0dW7b37g

Mixed Feelings On This

First off I want to state that I do spend my money on these causes. I donated over $1000 to Ron Paul's campaign. I also spent many hours doing phone-from-home (which was volunteer work). I am a subscriber to both Peter Schiff and Tom Woods' websites (schiffradio and libertyclassroom). Also I want to mention that I listened to Lew Rockwell's podcast (which is free) for several months. Just last week I decided that it was the right thing to do to donate money (I donated $100 and will very likely donate every year) because I really like what he's doing.

I prefaced my comments with the above to show that I'm not the stereotypical "moocher". And while I agree w/ TW on his overall point, I'm not so sure I loved his delivery of the message. I don't see the benefit in calling people (going from memory here so my quote might not be exact) "losers who nobody would want to hang out with to begin with". Why can't we just state the truth that, in order for events like PaulFest to exist, that someone has to step forward and pay the costs necessary to organize the event? If nobody does, then no events will occur. To me, that's more of a "cause and effect" argument rather than an attempt to shame people into things.

As for Judge Nap's speaking fee, it would be very interesting to hear the amount he was asking for. I have no idea what that number was but I do think there is a difference between asking for a fee for your time versus attempting to make a big profit off of people. Again, I want to reiterate that it's very possible his speaking fee was completely reasonable. But I will say that liberty-minded causes often do involve volunteer work (e.g. phone from home).

I think Tom Wood's main point

I think Tom Wood's main point was against people who demand to give out there time/work for free. This is very rude and childish behavior. NOT against free volunteer work that people give, that is not his point.

On the Napolitano charge. Who are you or I to say what his speaking fee should be? He has a certain value he places on his time that is only his. He can put any price on that; if people are willing to pay, they are willing to pay. If they are not,that is a signal to Napolitano that his price is too high for him to speak, people do not value his time accordingly. Maybe he only wants to speak 3 times a year because he works 14 hour days and has a family, then he wants his price high.

Mises.org
Know your stuff, learn real history and economics @LibertyClassroom.com

Response

>On the Napolitano charge. Who are you or I to say what his speaking fee
>should be?

Here's my answer - there's no exact figure I have in my head. All I hope is that Judge Napolitano charges what he believes to be a "reasonable" fee but no more. Why do I have a right to say that? I guess I don't but I can say that every dollar that goes in his or any other speaker's pocket is a dollar that isn't being spent on something else (e.g. a Ron Paul commercial to help him win the election). In other words, it's the standard "crowding out" effect. Along the exact same line of reasoning, people got upset with Jesse Benton for taking over $500,000 for being Dr. Paul's campaign manager. If he had taken only $350,000, for example, that would've freed up another $150,000 for advertising (or whatever use they would've put it toward).

I do want to stress though that I am a fan of both Judge Napolitano Tom Woods. I think they've both done a tremendous service overall to the liberty movement. I'm just posting my thoughts because, in addition to putting our efforts to use for the cause of liberty, I also think it is *critically* important that we keep a check on ourselves (no sacred cows). How many revolutions have taken place throughout history where the initial intentions were probably good but then, when the new ruling class takes over, they turned into the exact types of people that they once rebelled against. I definitely don't think that's the case here but just as a general rule I think we must keep that in mind.

economics 101

"All I hope is that Judge Napolitano charges what he believes to be a "reasonable" fee but no more."

The price that the market will pay is a "reasonable" fee. If you think the Judge's fee isn't reasonable, then hire someone else to speak -- someone who offers a better value for your money.

If the Judge can get $30K for a speaking event, and you think he should only charge $10K for your event, what you are saying is that he should effectively donate $20K to your event. That's a bit much to expect.

Worse yet, if he does this for one event "because it's a good cause", all of his future speaking events will then have people trying to get the same lower cost by arguing that theirs too is "a good cause". He probably has to listen to enough of that crap already. I don't think he wants to encourage more of it.

"Along the exact same line of reasoning, people got upset with Jesse Benton for taking over $500,000 for being Dr. Paul's campaign manager. If he had taken only $350,000, for example, that would've freed up another $150,000 for advertising (or whatever use they would've put it toward)."

Unless you are accusing Benton of theft, Benton didn't "take" anything. He was offered a job for a given sum of money. If Benton was overpaid, that was the fault of the person who made the offer, not Benton. If Benton was not overpaid, then you are saying he should have effectively contributed $150,000 to the campaign -- which would actually be illegal. (Don't put it past the bureaucrats to attempt to nail someone on something like that either. The IRS would be happy to go after someone for tax evasion in such a scheme, since campaign contributions are not tax deductible. And the FEC might be interested as well.)

Here's where we differ

>The price that the market will pay is a "reasonable" fee. If you think
>the Judge's fee isn't reasonable, then hire someone else to speak --
>someone who offers a better value for your money.

I'm saying that he should, IMO, accept the least amount possible that he would accept for speaking (in other words, the lower end of his range rather the upper end) because it (in theory) frees up the money not spent on his speech to go toward some other liberty-minded pursuit (e.g. advertising for Ron Paul).

It's similar to donating money to charity. The less money people take for themselves, the more that donation can go to help the needy. In this case, the "charity" is liberty.

I should say, though, that maybe that's exactly what Judge Nap did in his offer. I don't know either way and I'm not accusing (nor implying) that he didn't.

>Unless you are accusing Benton of theft, Benton didn't "take"
>anything. He was offered a job for a given sum of money. If Benton
>was overpaid, that was the fault of the person who made the offer,
>not Benton.

Same points as above.

That is logic-defyingly one-sided.

Your argument assumes that every penny that would be "saved" by paying the Judge less would "go toward some other liberty-minded pursuit". That assumption is absurd unless you believe the Judge's speaking has zero value -- otherwise people would be willing to pay up more to have such speaking rather than not have it. I.e., your argument assumes that every penny that possibly could go towards the cause of liberty already is, and there's no way to change that amount. (To believe that and remain consistent you'd also have to believe that the Ron Paul Revolution never started -- that there's no way someone like Ron Paul could have convinced people to spend tens of millions of dollars towards the cause of liberty that they otherwise would not have put towards that cause.)

Your argument also assumes that no penny earned by the Judge would "go toward some other liberty-minded pursuit" -- that the Judge would clearly spend every penny earned on purely selfish pursuits which would be of no benefit at all to the cause of liberty.

And the unspoken yet underlying premise of your argument is insulting to the Judge and counter to liberty, because it is that the world would be a better place if someone else (grass-rooters, whatever) spent the Judge's earnings rather than the Judge spending the Judge's earnings. That premise stinks of the philosophy of central planning -- the attitude that "we need to spend your money because you won't spend it right".

Finally, your argument provides no logical basis for picking the "lower end of his range" rather than "free". If, per your argument, a reduced rate is good, why isn't free better? Wouldn't it be even better, per your argument, if in addition to speaking, the Judge paid to speak (rather than being paid)? Where does it stop? Should the Judge vow to be your slave for the rest of his natural life, you know, for the sake of liberty?

There may certainly be logical reasons for the Judge to accept/demand different amounts for different speaking engagements. E.g., if he had other plans for the given time, he's likely to demand more as the personal cost to him is higher. On the other hand if he thinks he will derive value in speaking to the given audience, he may consider that in the price he is willing to accept. The bottom line though, as Austrian economics teaches, is that the value of the Judge's time, effort and talent to him, is something that should be, must be, and will be decided by the Judge himself, using his best judgement and not anyone else's. Asking the Judge to accept any price less than the value which he has determined and maintains is simply futile. If you want the Judge to change his price, then you need to successfully influence his personal valuation of the situation. And, if the Judge is logical, you're not going to achieve that through the argument you have provided here as it is distinctly deficient on that front

"because it (in theory) frees up the money"

No, it doesn't free up one penny, neither in theory nor in reality. It only transfers money from the Judge to someone else.

In the area of economics, a lot of inconsistent/illogical arguments share a common theme -- they only look at one side of the equation and ignore what happens on the other. (I take it you haven't read Henry Hazlitt's "Economics in One Lesson"?)

My Response

>Your argument assumes that every penny that would be "saved" by paying
>the Judge less would "go toward some other liberty-minded pursuit".
>That assumption is absurd unless you believe the Judge's speaking has
>zero value

I never said that the Judge's speaking has zero value. I did say charging a fee was okay but, personally, I'd like to see him charge in the lower end of the range of his speaking fees.

>your argument assumes that every penny that possibly could go towards
>the cause of liberty already is, and there's no way to change that
>amount.

I'm saying the campaign can use as many dollars as possible right now. If Judge Nap takes less then it frees up more money for other things (plus the liberty movement would still get the benefit of his speech, possibly new people donating). That's true regardless of how many new Ron Paul supporters/people donating there are.

>And the unspoken yet underlying premise of your argument is insulting
>to the Judge and counter to liberty, because it is that the world
>would be a better place if someone else (grass-rooters, whatever)
>spent the Judge's earnings rather than the Judge spending the Judge's
>earnings. That premise stinks of the philosophy of central planning
>-- the attitude that "we need to spend your money because you won't
>spend it right".

Central planning is when government spends other people's money. When people spend their own money, it's the opposite of central planning.

>Finally, your argument provides no logical basis for picking the
>"lower end of his range" rather than "free". If, per your argument, a
>reduced rate is good, why isn't free better?

Free would be better. Did you do the Ron Paul phone-from-home thing? If so, did you get paid to do it? Do you think Ron Paul supporters should've demanded payment for their work? And if they did demand money for their work, do you think it would've taken away funds from the campaign that could've been used for advertising, etc.

Another point on Napolitano,

Another point on Napolitano, if he is able to charge 30k per speaking arrangement he has the ability to now save and better his "product" by ways which is unknown. Similarly Tom Woods has done this. He is an excellent speaker, teacher, as well as being a respectable person. Therefore he has saved and set up Liberty Classroom. If he would have donated his time he would not have the necessary savings for Liberty Classroom.

Furthermore, Napolitano has donated a speech entirely for free for a cause he felt worthy:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0sNWbiAMf80
(This is a rocking speech btw)

Mises.org
Know your stuff, learn real history and economics @LibertyClassroom.com

Truth is funny TW

TY for making a serious problem funny. If we don't financially support each other, why would anyone else?

Now this Paulfest you mentioned....

Ron Paul is not going to be there, so why call it "Paulest"?

Isn't Paulfest another Libertarian moocher, when the only reason they have Ron Paul's name is to draw people to listen to LP candidate GJ?

What granger said

I think Ron Paul should be paid 2million dollars for the use of his name. Don't want the moochers to mooch off the moochers now do we.

You made me smile!

You made me smile!

Ditto Kiddo!

Have you listened to TWs Liberty classroom?

It's awesome!

I'm going to join.