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The Nutty Professor (Walter Blockhead), Arbitrary Rights, and NAP-headed hoes

Someone call a lawyer, a team of talmudic scholars, a psychoanalyst and a priest. The "rights theorists" are at it again, and no word or meaning is safe. And call the sheriff. Language is wanted as an accessory in the murder of logic.

Block has determined through his incisive reasoning that privacy, outside of that afforded by property, is no right, according to "Libertarian theory." He does not elaborate further.

Presumably rights emerge into nature merely in act of acquiring property. Prior to that their existence is hazy. Like the Big Bang, we don't know how they emerged, but if we start there with a "given" we can spin out a web of supposedly logical conclusions.

Just don't pay any attention to all the shoddy, haphazard assumptions and arbitrary definitions, decisions and determinations these "theorists" rely on to keep the rickety structure glued together.

According to Blockhead, privacy is a right only to the extent that it stems from property. Presumably then, if property fails to provide privacy in the future, then privacy will cease to exist, rightfully and justly.

Consider. If technology develops to a point where anyone can eavesdrop and view anyone else through their walls, from great distance, then per Block, no law could justly be enforced against such intrusion as it is not aggression. Privacy is not a right. It is merely an incidental consequence to the right of property (which is inherent in nature like the laws of physics according to "libertarian theorists").

We are probably not far from the point where personally owned drones can be flown above anyone else's airspace (umm, how much of the air above your property up to the atmosphere is "yours"?). So then the right to privacy thereby vanishes as well? After all, there is no physical aggression involved, so no legal restriction on such spying/intrusion would be justified. That would be aggression against individuals who are not harming anyone.

Of course, we can re-define x-ray or otherwise intrusive cameras as extensions of our bodies, or define them as weapons, I suppose. Pretty arbitrary, but possible. It would be a harder case to make for super-targeted listening devices. I suppose competing soundproofing technology for those who can afford it would be the sole means of defense, since the eavesdropper cannot rightfully be punished legally.

Someone spying into the window of a dressing minor would be morally and legally guilt-free, according to Block and the NAP crowd. No violation of the NAP, no infringement upon anyone's rights (privacy is not a right, remember), therefore no moral or ethical, or legal, violation.

As for airspace over one's property, it has never been either theorized or adjudicated as far as i know.

Perhaps some anarcho-geniuses will explain to us that A PRIORI AXIOMS PROVE that all the airspace over our property, extending into the atmosphere, and in fact infinitely into space time, is the the rightful property of the "homesteader," and that airlines should pay passage fees to anyone who's airspace they fly (trespass) over. Very practical and reasonable, these anarcho-comedians. Thanks for clearing up the real tough issues!

Another example of how this rights business is arbitrary (and hilarious) and involves definitions and decisions that are completely subjective and made up...

Suppose someone follows you around calling your mother a wh0re. Can you slap them in the mouth? Aggression or not? Who's the aggressor?

Don't cheat, no peaking at prior legal precedent churned out by those dens of violence and oppression, known as law courts. This one is tough, it needs to go to direct to the supreme council of anarchocap theorists.

It is arbitrary to say whether it is "aggression" or not, since no blow is struck. Whether this as$hole trails you by 5 feet or shadows your person (ghosts you, in technical parlance) or makes threatening body gestures, makes you uncomfortable, offends you, insults you, or if some bit of his stray spittle is caught by the wind and strikes your person, whether that is aggression and whether at that point you can shoot him or merely punch him in the nose is ALL arbitrary.


Important questions like these can't be left to anyone. Walter Block and other experts on the NAP should be consulted by the hundred thousand drive through, quick-serve, and dine-in arbitration agencies that would flourish under true freedom. (lol)

They need not even ALL necessarily have their own Blackwater agencies enforcing their rulings. Since no right to privacy exists, they can just use the best in modern spying and identification, tracking and biotechnology to observe, report, track, rate and judge the serfs, er, citizens of this new techno-feudalism, and its architecture of enforcing the NAP, without force.

Moving onto more pressing concerns.

In this shining sea of lagoons and lilly pads of freedom, some deserts and dark lagoons will undoubtedly exist. Some might surround completely others. In fact, all will be surrounded by a number of others, by definition.

Let a thousand nations bloom. Also a thousand conflicts, in need of resolution. Let a thousand communities have insufficient access to transportation, waterways, defensible borders. Let many of them be surrounded by hostile communities.

I suppose transportation agencies would also flourish, offering to transport those unfortunate enough to be in between or surrounded by privately owned anarchommunities which don't let others pass. Suppose some open city is surrounded on four sides by a44holes. These rescue air transport agencies would swoop in and fly the stranded sovereign individuals in the dry patch over into a more hospitable community.

This is where we really need the wisdom of the anarcho-geniuses to come in.

Exactly how far into the sky does my property extend? This is no easy question. Only the iron-clad, impenetrable, cold fusion reactors of Logic that are the minds of these theorists can determine such an important question. It carries with it the Fate of all future private drone and air travel Law.

Disregard all previous precedent, and coercive law -- that is all a product of tyranny, force and the bad old days of arbitrary violence.

Libertarian theory needs to define it all anew for us from really smart geniuses like Block, so that private competing arbitration agencies and drive-through courts/judges with protection agency enforcers will determine IMPORTANT questions.

The burning question of how much of the airspace above one's acre lot of property is also one's property, in which one can rightfully launch the nuclear warheads to which all free individuals are entitled, as owner of said private property, with unlimited property rights, needs a logical answer. We are waiting, Block.

People of brain.

Please take the nutty Professor above referenced and his dream team of NAPhead geniuses lightly, like I do. For the sake of your own mental well being. They are anarcho-comedians, good enough for amusement. Little else.

The law is what we decide it should be, and can get enough people to agree to enforce. Because it is REASONABLE for human well being.

Our rights are what we assert them to be, what we decide to demand others respect, and what we can mutually uphold because REASONABLE people agree and throw in with us.

Chuck these nutbags and their jackas$sery from serious conversation, please o pretty please?


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wolfe's picture

I never said that the person owned the picture.

That is what you are trying to ASSUME about the argument.

Read my comment to MN below. Maybe you can follow that one easier.

I said the creation of the image was a use of force, because you are using someone's personal property (the person), without their knowledge or consent.

You cannot defend the fruits of force. All subsequent actions that stem from the use of initiation of force cannot be defended.

The Philosophy Of Liberty -

a camera captures the light

a camera captures the light that hits the surface. are you suggesting that the light that reflects from a persons body is their property?

if so, then no one should ever be allowed to take anyones picture anywhere without paying them.

you are sorely confused.

in hole, dig up.

wolfe's picture

Are you really that dense?

Ok. You can have your ignorance, I am not interested in trying to take it away from you anymore.

--IF-- you actually want to understand, I am guessing the comment MN below is about the only one you can comprehend, but I know you will continue to ignore it.

Have a good ay.

The Philosophy Of Liberty -

you have no argument, like i

you have no argument, like i thought. move along.

wolfe's picture

I can agree with that.

So long as you continue to ignore the initial act of force, you cannot provide a credible argument.

If someone hits me, walks away, and was too weak to leave a mark (just happened to me the other day), then I suppose they aren't in violation of the NAP, simply because I lost nothing?

I find your arguments (and that of a number of libertarians who hold that viewpoint) to be childish and lacking in cohesiveness.

So there is no point in discussion, on that we agree. Have a good day.

The Philosophy Of Liberty -

There is no initial act of force in taking a photograph.

You still haven't demonstrated that recording "your image" is forcefully taking any of your property.

What is supposedly being taken from you?

If I stole your car I would be initiating force against your property.

If I take a picture of you I am not depriving you of any of your property.

If I take your picture, how have I taken your property?

What are you now missing?

Check out the Laissez-Faire Journal at

"The State is a gang of thieves writ large." - Murray Rothbard

wolfe's picture

You confuse concepts.

If I stole your car, and returned it before you noticed, what would I be taking from you?

If I hit you, but did no damage, how would I have hurt you?

If you take a picture of me without me consent (being in public is consent), how have you harmed me?

If you invited me into your home, and said but don't go in "that" room, and I went in that room and took a picture and posted it, that's not force either is it?

Your argument hinges on no harm=no force, which is a childish world view.

Using something without knowledge or permission, is force, regardless of any harm you perceive or don't perceive.

The Philosophy Of Liberty -

Holy Strawman, Batman!

You still don't get it!

You don't have a property right to "your image".

You don't own the rays of light that enter my eyes or my camera.

You don't own what I or others see.

You have no "image" rights.

Much like the pro-IP crowd, you are imagining an exclusive right to a non-rivalrous good.

There is no "image property" to be taken.

When someone takes a photograph of you they are not initiating force against your property in any way shape or form.

You don't have a property right in what other people see.

Your body(which you own) and others perception of your body(which you do not own) are two entirely different things.

When someone records an image of your likeness, they are not initiating force against your body or any other property.

Property rights to "your image" are non-existent.

Check out the Laissez-Faire Journal at

"The State is a gang of thieves writ large." - Murray Rothbard

wolfe's picture

Your claim...

That you can use my property without consent solely because you don't believe you are doing me harm is anti-NAP.


As far as IP. I am anti IP, however, I am also anti-theft, since that violates the NAP. And yes, believe it or not, your desire for piracy is a NAP violation, which I could explain to you, but if you are unable to get the very BASIC premise that I own my own body, then it is unlikely for you to understand that I own the fruits of my labor.

You are not promoting libertarian arguments. You are promoting the desire to do as you wish so long as you "believe it does no harm" without regard to the actual property owner.

Allowing someone to view the front of your house, and take pictures, does not mean that they have a license to enter your home and take photos of anything that they wish without your permission, but that is the EXACT argument that you make.

Btw, here's a tip, just because you either cannot counter or understand an argument does not make it a strawman... Shhh... Don't tell anyone or all communication at the DP would die immediately.

The Philosophy Of Liberty -

Oh boy, here we go again.

"You claim That you can use my property without consent solely because you don't believe you are doing me harm is anti-NAP."

Check out the Laissez-Faire Journal at

"The State is a gang of thieves writ large." - Murray Rothbard

LMFAO. only someone as

LMFAO. only someone as blatantly stupid as wolfe could bring me and josh together in uproarious laughter at this back and forth. i feel like i'm in a twilight zone episode. wolfe keeps repeating the same claim that the image is a property, right, totally ignoring that no one accepts this... doesn't even attempt to establish its validity. surreal.

wolfe's picture

You are an interesting liar.

I never made that claim. That was your insanely stupid assessment of the argument.

Your inability to understand the fundamentals of the argument is no reflection on me. It is a reflection on you, and if you were actually interested in understanding, you would have attempted to fully understand the argument, which you refused to read 5 sentences to achieve that.

Have fun in ignorance.

The Philosophy Of Liberty -


I may disagree with your OP, but at least you offer up a consistent argument.

I can't say that for wolfe in this case, which is sad because he and I agree on many other things.

I don't think he fully understands the ramifications of his argument:

Check out the Laissez-Faire Journal at

"The State is a gang of thieves writ large." - Murray Rothbard

wolfe's picture

We do agree on many things...

Which is why I am disappointed in you on this... My argument is not only internally consistent, but consistent with the NAP. However, you keep deflecting.

The Philosophy Of Liberty -

lol. omg it keeps going on


omg it keeps going on below..... i have to go cant take it

wolfe's picture

How is that a strawman?

Just because you can't counter an argument doesn't make it a strawman.

A strawman is throwing up an unrelated argument, and killing it, and pretending like you made your point.

I have done no such thing. I have made my argument very plainly and succinctly. So you must prove that either I do not own myself, or that somehow your use of my property (myself) is acceptable under the NAP, as long as you do me no harm.

You can do neither of these things.

Nevermind. I'm done and have better things to do. As you proved again, when you hit a point that you are no longer able to comprehend the argument, you yell strawman and run away from it.

The Philosophy Of Liberty -

It is a strawman because...

that is not what I am arguing.

Perhaps you should read closer.

The argument is not that I can use your property without your consent, it is that a property right to "your image" doesn't exist in the first place.

Check out the Laissez-Faire Journal at

"The State is a gang of thieves writ large." - Murray Rothbard

wolfe's picture

I never said property rights to my image exist.

I said property rights to my body exist. Perhaps you should reread my argument before attempting to counter it...

Or continue to look, well...

Which, by the way, your complete lack of understanding of my argument, and attempting to argue against some non-existent statement, in fact, makes your followup argument a strawman, if you want to continue being dickish about it.

The Philosophy Of Liberty -

Please explain how I have used your body then?

If I take a photograph how have I in any way, shape or form interacted with your body?

I have in no way touched/stolen/vandalized/trespassed/etc your body, by capturing rays of light reflected off of you.

Check out the Laissez-Faire Journal at

"The State is a gang of thieves writ large." - Murray Rothbard

wolfe's picture

Did you read my comment to MN?

If not, I will re-iterate it. But that is the clearest summation of my entire argument in only a few sentences.

The rest of the comments are jumping around from detail to detail. Arguing in favor of the NAP with Bill3, and explaining NAP consistent principles to you.

"No harm=No force"(your subtractive argument) is inconsistent with NAP. Force does not require harm to have occurred. And harm in your mind, versus harm in the property owners minds may be two very different things. As I have attempted to show you.

It requires the property owners permission, regardless of what you believe about harm.

The Philosophy Of Liberty -

lmao. where's the force?

lmao. where's the force? theres no force. you're murdering language to force consistency on what's inconsistent.

wolfe's picture


You don't understand the word "force".

If the person who's photo was taken said stop, I don't want my image displayed. And you refused, and sold the image. This is within the definition of force used by the NAP.

Force, includes any form of non-permitive property use.

The Philosophy Of Liberty -

right so its completely

right so its completely arbitrary, has nothing to do with actual force, and is just manipulating words.

the light that reflects off of your person is not your body, you don't own it, and no violation of your physical body or property takes place.

if your picture belonged to you by right, it would apply on or off your property.

obviously your picture is not a part of your body, and someone selling your image even if taken while in your home does not remotely touch your body or your property. making any such logical leap is purely arbitrary.

wolfe's picture

If you trespass...

And refuse to leave someone's property. You are forcing them to allow your use of their property and the only recourse is retaliatory force.

That is not an arbitrary definition. That is in line with it's definition and it is the reason why, the word force is used instead of violence. Force means something different than just violence alone.

Your "image" is a lot more than simply your physical body. You have a right to determine how your body is used. This is a disagreement within the libertarian community in terms of what is a violation and what is not.

But at least we make an effort to produce coherent arguments. Instead of just deciding "we don't like the behavior" and "make a law".

The Philosophy Of Liberty -

no one said anything about

no one said anything about trespassing or being on anyone else's property. you have just completely tried to switch the conditions we were talking about, or you are mangling yet more words.

no force is involved in snapping pictures of someone from outside their property, and selling them. there is no logical chain that can start from property rights and end with it being illegal to sell someone's image, shot from a distance. doesn't matter what verbal gymnastics you do.

wolfe's picture

I was explaining the meaning of force to you.

Please don't be dense or deliberately stupid.

To use someone's property without their consent is to trespass.

A person's self is the first property they own.

The Philosophy Of Liberty -

a picture of someone is not

a picture of someone is not their property. that's block's whole point. no need to get upset.

shameful self bump.

shameful self bump.

Michael Nystrom's picture

Too bad no one else is going to take it on

Even though they know its wrong.

Because it is obvious that one has a right to privacy. But few have the skill to take on that kind of sophistry.

wolfe's picture

It's easier than you might think.

My core argument comes from working through some other very difficult scenarios.

You own yourself. Use of you without your knowledge or consent is trespassing/force against your private property.

Public appearance is consent to the use of visual/verbal aspects of the property (yourself), because you are knowingly providing it.

Secretly recording or otherwise invading privacy violates the NAP because it does not obtain the property owner's permission.

It really is that simple. And it bothers me that some in the movement are adopting this, "no harm=no force" argument, which basically runs completely counter to the NAP. The NAP doesn't say you can't harm me, it says you can't use force against me.

The Philosophy Of Liberty -