The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

Shofar FTP Archive File: people/f/forman.frank/1996/forman.0396


From forman@netcom.com Sat Mar  2 10:11:20 PST 1996
Article: 14799 of alt.politics.nationalism.white
Newsgroups: alt.philosophy.objectivism,misc.legal,alt.memetics,sci.philosophy.meta,talk.politics.theory,alt.postmodern,alt.extropians,soc.culture.intercultural,alt.pissed.federal.employees,alt.politics.reform,alt.politics.democrats.d,alt.activism,alt.discrimination,alt.politics.correct,alt.conspiracy,talk.politics.guns,alt.politics.usa.constitution,alt.society.conservatism,alt.fan.newt-gingrich,alt.politics.nationalism.white,talk.politics.libertarian,alt.politics.radical-left
Path: nizkor.almanac.bc.ca!news.island.net!news.bctel.net!news.cyberstore.ca!helix.net!unixg.ubc.ca!info.ucla.edu!newsfeed.internetmci.com!howland.reston.ans.net!ix.netcom.com!netcom.com!forman
From: forman@netcom.com (frank forman)
Subject: CS2: One Political Party or Two?
Message-ID: 
Keywords: County Sovereignty, Politics
Organization: NETCOM On-line Communication Services (408 261-4700 guest)
Distribution: inet
Date: Fri, 1 Mar 1996 14:27:07 GMT
Lines: 445
Sender: forman@netcom22.netcom.com
Xref: nizkor.almanac.bc.ca alt.philosophy.objectivism:62025 misc.legal:11763 alt.memetics:1579 sci.philosophy.meta:16029 talk.politics.theory:58061 alt.postmodern:20981 alt.politics.reform:54612 alt.politics.democrats.d:58454 alt.activism:32751 alt.discrimination:43908 alt.politics.correct:85608 alt.conspiracy:34204 talk.politics.guns:238205 alt.politics.usa.constitution:51335 alt.society.conservatism:34212 alt.politics.nationalism.white:14799 talk.politics.libertarian:70318 alt.politics.radical-left:76764

COUNTY SOVEREIGNTY
Volume 1, Number 2
1996 March 1
Frank Forman, editor
forman@netcom.com

[As you read the essay, try to keep in mind the county sovereignty
ideal. Does it matter whether there are one or two parties at the
county level? Which is the general reality today? The essay is mostly
about how many parties there are at the national level. Would this
change if counties held the bulk of governmental power?]

ONE POLITICAL PARTY OR TWO?
by Frank Forman
1996 March 1 (revised from 1993 April 25)

Everyone is at least somewhat myopic, and it is primarily those close
to the political center that can see big differences between the
Democrats and the Republicans. Those away from the center, the
"extremists," see no essential differences between the two major
parties. Far leftists claim that capitalism and fascism are the "same."
Far rightists, likewise, see only one party, the
Demicans/Republicrats.

Maybe we should not expect much of a difference between the two
parties in a two-party democracy. If the Democrats moved away
>from  the center to the left, the Republicans capture all the votes to
the right of center, plus half the votes from the center to the
Democrats. In the next election, the losing Democrats are sure to
move their platform back to the center.

We see exactly the same things with two competing hot dog stands
on a beach. Suppose the beach were a mile long and the bathers
placed evenly throughout. From the point of view of the customers,
the best place for the two stands would be at one-third and two-
thirds of a mile along the beach. This would minimize the distance
the average customer would have to walk to get a hot dog. But if the
second hot dog proprietor moved his stand to the center, he would
still get all the customers he got before and add many customers who
have been patronizing the first hot dog stand. Eventually, the two
stands would wind up next to each other in the middle.

This is not an ideal solution, and the proprietors have a real
incentive to make an antitrust agreement to split up the market and
put their stands at one-third and two-thirds of a mile. In politics,
however, this would result in radical swings of policy whenever one
set of bums was thrown out and another set put in. It would take a
real "extremist," one who was not even on the beach, to see no
differences between the two parties. These swings have taken place
in other countries, where politics is much more ideological than
here, where politicians dispense with more than just handouts to
various constituencies. Except for the Civil War, politics has been
pretty non-ideological in this country, despite all the rhetoric, and it
is quite possible to argue that the corresponding stability is a good
thing.

Thus the case that there is only "one" political part in the United
State and that this is not something to really complain about. If there
were only one hot dog stand, it should indeed be placed half a mile
along the beach. The complaints about our country's political system
should not be directed at two-party democracy, which leaves the
fewest dissatisfied voters, but with the voters themselves. They want,
and get, far too much government, and government of the wrong
sort.

One the other hand, a case can be made that there are really *two*
parties, as the great John C. Calhoun foresaw in his _Disquisition on
Government_, that of the taxpayers and that of the taxeaters (not his
term). The Republicans are the non-unionized wage earners and most
of the businessmen; the Democrats are the welfare and Social
Security recipients and government employees. There have been
more net taxeaters than net taxpayers in this country for over twenty
years, and so the Democrats have maintained healthy majorities at all
levels except for the Presidency itself throughout most of this period.

Here are the two views and their corresponding dualities (discussion
welcome!):

ONE PARTY                       TWO PARTIES

Elitist                         Pluralist
Ruling Class                    Masses
Domination                      Common Advantages
Positive Power                  Veto Power
Conspiracy                      Spontaneous Order
Hidden Hand                     Invisible Hand
Ideology                        Self-Interest
Taxeaters                       Pressure Groups
Coercion                        Consensus
Conflict Model                  Integrationist Model
Exploitative                    Cooperative
Karl Marx                       Max Weber

BUT NEITHER:
Left-Wing                       Right-Wing
NOR:
Right-Wing                      Left-Wing


But however much the natural constituency of the part of the
taxeaters differs from that of the part of the taxpayers, the political
*platforms* have come to resemble each other. One calls for $1.7
trillion in federal spending per year; the other calls for only $1.6
Terradollars. One calls for extending civil rights protection to
homosexuals; the other calls for holding the line. Only irresponsible
right-wing "extremists" call for repeal of civil rights legislation or
reducing the role of the federal government to what it was under
Jimmy Carter.

There is a paradox here. There really are such things as taxpayers
and taxeaters, whence the analogy with the hot dog stands along the
beach breaks down, but you wouldn't know it from listening to
politicians or looking at their voting records. Maybe we are so
relentlessly non-ideological that we cannot make the simple
distinction between taxpayers and taxeaters. Maybe we have been so
bamboozled by the ideology of egalitarianism and what Ayn Rand
called altruism that we do not see that the taxeaters have no authentic
right to the earnings of the taxpayers. This takes us back to the
beach: the hot dog stand to the left caters to those who want more
for the taxeaters, while the stand to the right caters to those who
want less. The stands themselves are located next to each other, in
the middle and thus just where the voters want them.

The extremist who is not on the beach at all and sees the two parties
as "one" party is, then, someone who sees (probably without
realizing it) an ideological racket at work. He would, if he could,
come in and sell hamburgers. This is, I submit, what the Middle
American Radicals (MARs) are all about. Their wishes, to be left
alone, not to be harassed with taxes and regulations, have been
forgotten. It will take the kind of political entrepreneur called a
populist to make their voices heard. But he cannot be too loud about
it. The MARs have assimilated too much egalitarianism, altruism,
and globaloney to be comfortable with a populist who emphatically
rejects them all. Populists in fact cast their rhetoric in egalitarian
terms, whatever they really believe, just as closet atheists in the
Middle Ages cast their arguments in terms of Christianity. Ross
Perot's political positions, whenever he stated any, were generally
between those of the Demicans and the Republicrats.

As the Middle American Radicals see it, then, there are indeed the
taxpayers vs. the taxeaters. It's just that the Demicans and
Republicrats are *jointly* the taxeaters, while they, the MARs, are
the taxpayers. So there is "one" party, with the taxpayers not
represented at all. How is it, then, that the Republi*cans* are
taxeaters? They are made up, after all, largely of non-unionized
workers and businessmen. Don't businessmen object to all the taxes
they pay? Well, they would rather not pay them, but they may very
well think they are able to pass all the taxes on to the consumers,
those Forgotten Americans, William Graham Sumner's term for
those whose function in life is to pay. This *appearance* of an
ability to pass on taxes is bolstered by another astonishing ability of
men, even businessmen, to internalize whatever morality racket rules
the day. This is especially true of big business and big banksters.
They prattle endlessly about global responsibility and North-South
dialogue. They are *liberal* Republicans. A Middle American
Radical cannot but suspect that they are also on the take.

Are they? They manage to get tariffs and "voluntary" import quotas.
Worse, the banksters are convinced that the taxpayers will bail them
out when their foolish loans to Third World dictators fail to be
repaid. And a good many businessmen are protected from
competition by regulatory commissions. The airlines are no longer,
so it seems, but when they fail in open competitions they hide under
ridiculously lenient bankruptcy laws and continue to operate. It
seems, at least to MARs, that we have socialism for the big boys
and free enterprise for small businesses.

However, if one tries to total up the rakeoff big business manages to
get for itself, especially in comparison with the Human Betterment
Industry (health, education, and welfare--the latter two almost
entirely subsidized by taxes), it is not plausible to think big
businesses are net taxeaters. Why their leaders go along with, and
often publicly affirm, egalitarianism, altruism, and globaloney, can
be explained by the fact that they pretty much have to. In the old
days, businesses were run by engineers. Later the accountants took
over (or rather accountants became the CEOs), not necessarily such
a bad thing, since engineers do not keep profits uppermost in mind.
Profits are small in relation to total sales (they run about four
percent), and if a few product lines look splendid to the engineers
who designed them, but cost too much to make or fail to sell for
more than they cost, then the company will be bested in competition.

Now government regulations and arcane provisions in the tax code
have come to make up an often very significant fraction of this four
percent. This has meant that big businesses are more and more being
run by lawyers with political connections than by accountants or
engineers. Any lawyer that came across like Ayn Rand's Hank
Rearden (basically an engineer) in front of Congressional staff would
be thrown out. It's the smoothies who get those little changes made
in regulations and the tax codes that make a tremendous difference in
the bottom line. It is not the least unlikely that many lawyer-
businessmen will come to believe their own talk about
egalitarianism, altruism, and globaloney.

In fact, they came to believe their own compromised posturings a
good many decades ago and are now far from allies of the Middle
American Radicals. They have come to think, in their more cynical
moods, that they are ahead of the game and rip off others more than
they are ripped off themselves. So it looks there is "one" political
party after all. Then again, just maybe businessmen could see
themselves as taxpayers and wrest control of their businesses from
the lawyers.

And then yet again....  I stop, to give the readers a change to render
their own opinion on how many political parties there are in the
United States, and to suggest what can be done. But PLEASE don't
just give a quickie response: I'm not taking a poll and want some
really hard thinking here. Write at least 400 words (2000 Bytes),
read this piece over again, and then revise it. Please also let us know
where you are reading this from.

And try to refrain from suggesting that the MARs become an
organized and hence a new group of taxeaters. *Someone* has to do
the work!

[end of essay]
----------------------------------

CONNECTION TO COUNTY SOVEREIGNTY

The theme of this e-zine, namely county sovereignty, is not
obviously connected to the essay you just read, and I posed some
questions at the beginning. My answer is that voting with one's feet
would render it relatively unimportant whether there were "one" or
"two" parties in a given county. I have no knowledge of how many
of the 3200 counties in this country have active two-party systems,
but I would say that there is less taxpayer vs. taxeater at the county
level than at state and national levels. Note that there does not have
to be many competit*ors* for there to be competit*ion*. The threat
of entry always looms. And the best way to avoid this threat is to
keep your prices low and quality always improving. But sometimes,
as in the big city machines, a monopoly party can often retain its
power by enlisting the graveyard vote.

Here's a statement from a world historian:

"The balance shifts more toward 'capitalism' (without ever coming
close) as states are small, weak and numerous, more toward
'statism' as they are few, strong and large."

David Wilkinson, "Central Civilization," in Stephen K. Sanderson,
ed., _Civilizations and World Systems: Studying World-Historical
Change_ (Walnut Creek: PA: AltaMira Press, 1995), p. 67.

-------------------------------------

NOTES ON THE FIRST ISSUE:

We got about fifty articles in the thread and subsidiary subject
headers within the thread on the UseNet groups. I think some of
them are still going but all have gotten far away from the original
subject of county sovereignty.

----------------------------------

I thank Louis Epstein for correcting my estimate of 2000 counties
with more like 3200.

----------------------------------

Of the many postings, the most thoughtful one appeared only on
sci.philosophy.meta, but its author, Jim Farmer, sent a copy to me
by e-mail. Here it is:

From: farmer_jl@usp.ac.fj (Jim Farmer)
Newsgroups: sci.philosophy.meta
Subject: Re: County Sovereignty, Vol 1, No. 1
Message-ID: <1996Jan5.115613.1579@usp>
Date: 5 Jan 96 11:56:13 +1200
Organization: The University of the South Pacific

forman@netcom.com (frank forman) wrote on Mon, 1 Jan 1996 00:05:17 GMT:

> Summary: "Why Governments Will Devolve"
> Keywords: Politics, Philosophy, Culture, Future, Law
> 
> COUNTY SOVEREIGNTY
> Volume 1, Number 1
> 1996 January 1
> Frank Forman, editor
> 
> Welcome to a new e-zine! This first issue is
> made up of an essay by myself. Future issues
> will report on the county sovereignty movement
> in the American West, where sheriffs have been
> telling federal officials to stay out unless
> they have permission.
[snip]
> There is nothing in philosophy or political
> theory that says governments have to be of any
> specific size. They only say what governments
> *should* do, not how big they ought to be. 
[snip]
> However far devolution goes, county sovereignty
> should become an ideal or benchmark against
> which to compare reality.

That general idea coincides with a statement that I made during a
conversation in 1970 about the current distribution of power being an
"anomalous inversion".  Since then I have aged much and wisened
slightly, so the following comments come to mind.

1.  By what method can optimized boundaries of jurisdiction be
calculated?  The historical criteria that the article mentioned "...
often described as no larger than a horse-and-buggy's day drive from the
county seat ..." surely cannot apply to all legitimate functions of
government nowadays.  The article does say 

     > Counties can certainly cooperate with one
     > another, and of course they will, from such
     > elementary things as making sure roads connect
     > at county boundaries and on up to coordinating
     > contract and tort law. The counties may, and
     > will, empower governments at the state level to
     > do these various jobs of coordination, but the
     > states will not be granted the power to tax. At
     > the next higher level, states can cooperate with
     > each other and empower a federal government, but
     > it, too will have no power to tax. And nations
     > can cooperate with one another, too, as they do
     > through several dozen international bodies

but as long as we are in the business of devolution, it might be
worthwhile to determine what determines the optimum granularity for each
such function.  I suspect that cultural factors will be important in
some cases, because some groups have very different ideas about what is
the best way to design a government.

2.   The geographical scope of the movement is perhaps deliberately
limited to the USA, but unfortunately the rest of the world exerts
significant force, and  USA /= World  in many regards.  In particular,
immigration control will be necessary for a long time yet simply because
the labour-demand spectrum in USA does not match the excess-labour-
supply spectrum of the world, and even the USA cannot meet the needs of
everyone who would like to come in.  Thus, global economic conditions
also come into the determination of optimized jurisdictions.

[Note from Frank: I certainly agree that immigration may
have to be handled at the national level, for counties and
states may compete for cheap labor and not concern
themselves that the *children* of immigrants, who will tend
to regress to the population means of their homelands, may
become non-producers or otherwise alter the cultural
landscape.]

3.  > Corporations around the world are "delayering"
    > by thinning out ranks of middle managers

     The discussion of de-layering of organisations did not mention one
important distinction between middle management and top management,
namely this:  top management is concerned with making the size and type
of the organisation continuously track its niche in the changing socio-
economic-political environment, while middle management is concerned
with holding the current organisation together and making it work now. 
The requirements for information, skills, and concepts of the two levels
are not identical.  The need for both levels to exist will always be
present; and whether or not they can be fulfilled by fewer persons
having more information is a good question.  If the answer is Yes, then
those persons will have to have a broader and higher profile of
abilities, and that means greater selectivity and higher salaries.  Is
our socio-economic-educational system sufficiently developed to support
that situation and still keep unemployment down to acceptable levels, or
will USA suffer that common symptom of the underdevelopment syndrome in
which the skilled persons are overworked and highly paid while the
under-skilled are under-employed?
     Well, we can of course answer "I hope so", or "Ideally, yes", or
"Eventually", but it might take a few generations - if not centuries -
for the socio-economic-educational system to catch up with the change in
technology.  (As always everywhere)
     A good middle manager is not just a high-speed paper pusher; he is
an expediter, a problem-solver, and a rip-stopper.  Top management must
not have to spend time on such problems as theft of tools, personality
conflicts between machine operators, etc., although they might want to see
the statistics of occurrence of such problems, plus an analysis of
impacts, plans for remediation, etc. - all of which the middle managers
must produce and then follow through to completion.  Of course, the better
the quality and reliability of the Men, Money, Materials, Machines, and
Methods, the less need for Middle Managers, but that need decreases only
asymptotically towards zero.  And even if information were to become
perfect, complete, and free, that would not eliminate all counter-
productive attitudes, concepts, and principles of the customers,
suppliers, stockholders, workers, managers, and community members.


Jim Farmer

-----------------------------------

Doug Schell sent me this e-mail:

From: drschell@nando.net (Doug Schell)

BTW, have you read Sam Sherwood's book "The Little
Republics: The Restoration of the Balance of Power 
at the Local Levels vs. the Federal Levels of Government?" 
Chapter 5 talks about specific action and steps in
making the transition.  Can be gotten at:

Hawkes Publishing
Box 65735
Salt Lake City, UT 84165
(801) 266-5555

I believe it costs about $25.

----------------------------------------

Steve Washam  put me onto an e-
mail list, liberty-and-justice. It contains many news articles (a great
number of which are due to Steve's good efforts) about the actual
revolts going on in several of the western states as well as news on
many other topics posted by those dissatisfied with the current
Federal government. There is a fairly high amount of noise; so be
prepared to go through about 30-40 e-mails a day to get some good
stuff. To subscribe, send the message,

"subscribe liberty-and-justice  ",

to majordomo@pobox.com.

----------------------------

FINAL WORDS: 

1. Write at some length (400 words or 2000 Bytes. I'm trying to do
more than run an opinion poll!

2. Say where you are reading this from.

3. THINK county sovereignty. It's not a solution to all problems,
but we should look at things from this bottom-up perspective and
imagine how the workings of the larger society would emerge.

4. "County sovereignty" is a 'meme' I am inflicting upon the world,
which is why this is being posted to alt.memetics. Hope we get a
good analysis.

5. In the table in my essay, I listed "elitist" in the One Party"
column and "pluralist" in the "Two Parties" column. I read
somewhere many years ago that sociologists look for elites and keep
finding pluralities, while political scientists look for pluralities and
keep finding elites. (Or maybe it was the other way around.) So this
essay has obvious relevance to an e-mail group discussing elitism,
which is why it is being sent to them.


From forman@netcom.com Sat Mar  2 11:38:48 PST 1996
Article: 34204 of alt.conspiracy
Newsgroups: alt.philosophy.objectivism,misc.legal,alt.memetics,sci.philosophy.meta,talk.politics.theory,alt.postmodern,alt.extropians,soc.culture.intercultural,alt.pissed.federal.employees,alt.politics.reform,alt.politics.democrats.d,alt.activism,alt.discrimination,alt.politics.correct,alt.conspiracy,talk.politics.guns,alt.politics.usa.constitution,alt.society.conservatism,alt.fan.newt-gingrich,alt.politics.nationalism.white,talk.politics.libertarian,alt.politics.radical-left
Path: nizkor.almanac.bc.ca!news.island.net!news.bctel.net!news.cyberstore.ca!helix.net!unixg.ubc.ca!info.ucla.edu!newsfeed.internetmci.com!howland.reston.ans.net!ix.netcom.com!netcom.com!forman
From: forman@netcom.com (frank forman)
Subject: CS2: One Political Party or Two?
Message-ID: 
Keywords: County Sovereignty, Politics
Organization: NETCOM On-line Communication Services (408 261-4700 guest)
Distribution: inet
Date: Fri, 1 Mar 1996 14:27:07 GMT
Lines: 445
Sender: forman@netcom22.netcom.com
Xref: nizkor.almanac.bc.ca alt.philosophy.objectivism:62025 misc.legal:11763 alt.memetics:1579 sci.philosophy.meta:16029 talk.politics.theory:58061 alt.postmodern:20981 alt.politics.reform:54612 alt.politics.democrats.d:58454 alt.activism:32751 alt.discrimination:43908 alt.politics.correct:85608 alt.conspiracy:34204 talk.politics.guns:238205 alt.politics.usa.constitution:51335 alt.society.conservatism:34212 alt.politics.nationalism.white:14799 talk.politics.libertarian:70318 alt.politics.radical-left:76764

COUNTY SOVEREIGNTY
Volume 1, Number 2
1996 March 1
Frank Forman, editor
forman@netcom.com

[As you read the essay, try to keep in mind the county sovereignty
ideal. Does it matter whether there are one or two parties at the
county level? Which is the general reality today? The essay is mostly
about how many parties there are at the national level. Would this
change if counties held the bulk of governmental power?]

ONE POLITICAL PARTY OR TWO?
by Frank Forman
1996 March 1 (revised from 1993 April 25)

Everyone is at least somewhat myopic, and it is primarily those close
to the political center that can see big differences between the
Democrats and the Republicans. Those away from the center, the
"extremists," see no essential differences between the two major
parties. Far leftists claim that capitalism and fascism are the "same."
Far rightists, likewise, see only one party, the
Demicans/Republicrats.

Maybe we should not expect much of a difference between the two
parties in a two-party democracy. If the Democrats moved away
>from  the center to the left, the Republicans capture all the votes to
the right of center, plus half the votes from the center to the
Democrats. In the next election, the losing Democrats are sure to
move their platform back to the center.

We see exactly the same things with two competing hot dog stands
on a beach. Suppose the beach were a mile long and the bathers
placed evenly throughout. From the point of view of the customers,
the best place for the two stands would be at one-third and two-
thirds of a mile along the beach. This would minimize the distance
the average customer would have to walk to get a hot dog. But if the
second hot dog proprietor moved his stand to the center, he would
still get all the customers he got before and add many customers who
have been patronizing the first hot dog stand. Eventually, the two
stands would wind up next to each other in the middle.

This is not an ideal solution, and the proprietors have a real
incentive to make an antitrust agreement to split up the market and
put their stands at one-third and two-thirds of a mile. In politics,
however, this would result in radical swings of policy whenever one
set of bums was thrown out and another set put in. It would take a
real "extremist," one who was not even on the beach, to see no
differences between the two parties. These swings have taken place
in other countries, where politics is much more ideological than
here, where politicians dispense with more than just handouts to
various constituencies. Except for the Civil War, politics has been
pretty non-ideological in this country, despite all the rhetoric, and it
is quite possible to argue that the corresponding stability is a good
thing.

Thus the case that there is only "one" political part in the United
State and that this is not something to really complain about. If there
were only one hot dog stand, it should indeed be placed half a mile
along the beach. The complaints about our country's political system
should not be directed at two-party democracy, which leaves the
fewest dissatisfied voters, but with the voters themselves. They want,
and get, far too much government, and government of the wrong
sort.

One the other hand, a case can be made that there are really *two*
parties, as the great John C. Calhoun foresaw in his _Disquisition on
Government_, that of the taxpayers and that of the taxeaters (not his
term). The Republicans are the non-unionized wage earners and most
of the businessmen; the Democrats are the welfare and Social
Security recipients and government employees. There have been
more net taxeaters than net taxpayers in this country for over twenty
years, and so the Democrats have maintained healthy majorities at all
levels except for the Presidency itself throughout most of this period.

Here are the two views and their corresponding dualities (discussion
welcome!):

ONE PARTY                       TWO PARTIES

Elitist                         Pluralist
Ruling Class                    Masses
Domination                      Common Advantages
Positive Power                  Veto Power
Conspiracy                      Spontaneous Order
Hidden Hand                     Invisible Hand
Ideology                        Self-Interest
Taxeaters                       Pressure Groups
Coercion                        Consensus
Conflict Model                  Integrationist Model
Exploitative                    Cooperative
Karl Marx                       Max Weber

BUT NEITHER:
Left-Wing                       Right-Wing
NOR:
Right-Wing                      Left-Wing


But however much the natural constituency of the part of the
taxeaters differs from that of the part of the taxpayers, the political
*platforms* have come to resemble each other. One calls for $1.7
trillion in federal spending per year; the other calls for only $1.6
Terradollars. One calls for extending civil rights protection to
homosexuals; the other calls for holding the line. Only irresponsible
right-wing "extremists" call for repeal of civil rights legislation or
reducing the role of the federal government to what it was under
Jimmy Carter.

There is a paradox here. There really are such things as taxpayers
and taxeaters, whence the analogy with the hot dog stands along the
beach breaks down, but you wouldn't know it from listening to
politicians or looking at their voting records. Maybe we are so
relentlessly non-ideological that we cannot make the simple
distinction between taxpayers and taxeaters. Maybe we have been so
bamboozled by the ideology of egalitarianism and what Ayn Rand
called altruism that we do not see that the taxeaters have no authentic
right to the earnings of the taxpayers. This takes us back to the
beach: the hot dog stand to the left caters to those who want more
for the taxeaters, while the stand to the right caters to those who
want less. The stands themselves are located next to each other, in
the middle and thus just where the voters want them.

The extremist who is not on the beach at all and sees the two parties
as "one" party is, then, someone who sees (probably without
realizing it) an ideological racket at work. He would, if he could,
come in and sell hamburgers. This is, I submit, what the Middle
American Radicals (MARs) are all about. Their wishes, to be left
alone, not to be harassed with taxes and regulations, have been
forgotten. It will take the kind of political entrepreneur called a
populist to make their voices heard. But he cannot be too loud about
it. The MARs have assimilated too much egalitarianism, altruism,
and globaloney to be comfortable with a populist who emphatically
rejects them all. Populists in fact cast their rhetoric in egalitarian
terms, whatever they really believe, just as closet atheists in the
Middle Ages cast their arguments in terms of Christianity. Ross
Perot's political positions, whenever he stated any, were generally
between those of the Demicans and the Republicrats.

As the Middle American Radicals see it, then, there are indeed the
taxpayers vs. the taxeaters. It's just that the Demicans and
Republicrats are *jointly* the taxeaters, while they, the MARs, are
the taxpayers. So there is "one" party, with the taxpayers not
represented at all. How is it, then, that the Republi*cans* are
taxeaters? They are made up, after all, largely of non-unionized
workers and businessmen. Don't businessmen object to all the taxes
they pay? Well, they would rather not pay them, but they may very
well think they are able to pass all the taxes on to the consumers,
those Forgotten Americans, William Graham Sumner's term for
those whose function in life is to pay. This *appearance* of an
ability to pass on taxes is bolstered by another astonishing ability of
men, even businessmen, to internalize whatever morality racket rules
the day. This is especially true of big business and big banksters.
They prattle endlessly about global responsibility and North-South
dialogue. They are *liberal* Republicans. A Middle American
Radical cannot but suspect that they are also on the take.

Are they? They manage to get tariffs and "voluntary" import quotas.
Worse, the banksters are convinced that the taxpayers will bail them
out when their foolish loans to Third World dictators fail to be
repaid. And a good many businessmen are protected from
competition by regulatory commissions. The airlines are no longer,
so it seems, but when they fail in open competitions they hide under
ridiculously lenient bankruptcy laws and continue to operate. It
seems, at least to MARs, that we have socialism for the big boys
and free enterprise for small businesses.

However, if one tries to total up the rakeoff big business manages to
get for itself, especially in comparison with the Human Betterment
Industry (health, education, and welfare--the latter two almost
entirely subsidized by taxes), it is not plausible to think big
businesses are net taxeaters. Why their leaders go along with, and
often publicly affirm, egalitarianism, altruism, and globaloney, can
be explained by the fact that they pretty much have to. In the old
days, businesses were run by engineers. Later the accountants took
over (or rather accountants became the CEOs), not necessarily such
a bad thing, since engineers do not keep profits uppermost in mind.
Profits are small in relation to total sales (they run about four
percent), and if a few product lines look splendid to the engineers
who designed them, but cost too much to make or fail to sell for
more than they cost, then the company will be bested in competition.

Now government regulations and arcane provisions in the tax code
have come to make up an often very significant fraction of this four
percent. This has meant that big businesses are more and more being
run by lawyers with political connections than by accountants or
engineers. Any lawyer that came across like Ayn Rand's Hank
Rearden (basically an engineer) in front of Congressional staff would
be thrown out. It's the smoothies who get those little changes made
in regulations and the tax codes that make a tremendous difference in
the bottom line. It is not the least unlikely that many lawyer-
businessmen will come to believe their own talk about
egalitarianism, altruism, and globaloney.

In fact, they came to believe their own compromised posturings a
good many decades ago and are now far from allies of the Middle
American Radicals. They have come to think, in their more cynical
moods, that they are ahead of the game and rip off others more than
they are ripped off themselves. So it looks there is "one" political
party after all. Then again, just maybe businessmen could see
themselves as taxpayers and wrest control of their businesses from
the lawyers.

And then yet again....  I stop, to give the readers a change to render
their own opinion on how many political parties there are in the
United States, and to suggest what can be done. But PLEASE don't
just give a quickie response: I'm not taking a poll and want some
really hard thinking here. Write at least 400 words (2000 Bytes),
read this piece over again, and then revise it. Please also let us know
where you are reading this from.

And try to refrain from suggesting that the MARs become an
organized and hence a new group of taxeaters. *Someone* has to do
the work!

[end of essay]
----------------------------------

CONNECTION TO COUNTY SOVEREIGNTY

The theme of this e-zine, namely county sovereignty, is not
obviously connected to the essay you just read, and I posed some
questions at the beginning. My answer is that voting with one's feet
would render it relatively unimportant whether there were "one" or
"two" parties in a given county. I have no knowledge of how many
of the 3200 counties in this country have active two-party systems,
but I would say that there is less taxpayer vs. taxeater at the county
level than at state and national levels. Note that there does not have
to be many competit*ors* for there to be competit*ion*. The threat
of entry always looms. And the best way to avoid this threat is to
keep your prices low and quality always improving. But sometimes,
as in the big city machines, a monopoly party can often retain its
power by enlisting the graveyard vote.

Here's a statement from a world historian:

"The balance shifts more toward 'capitalism' (without ever coming
close) as states are small, weak and numerous, more toward
'statism' as they are few, strong and large."

David Wilkinson, "Central Civilization," in Stephen K. Sanderson,
ed., _Civilizations and World Systems: Studying World-Historical
Change_ (Walnut Creek: PA: AltaMira Press, 1995), p. 67.

-------------------------------------

NOTES ON THE FIRST ISSUE:

We got about fifty articles in the thread and subsidiary subject
headers within the thread on the UseNet groups. I think some of
them are still going but all have gotten far away from the original
subject of county sovereignty.

----------------------------------

I thank Louis Epstein for correcting my estimate of 2000 counties
with more like 3200.

----------------------------------

Of the many postings, the most thoughtful one appeared only on
sci.philosophy.meta, but its author, Jim Farmer, sent a copy to me
by e-mail. Here it is:

From: farmer_jl@usp.ac.fj (Jim Farmer)
Newsgroups: sci.philosophy.meta
Subject: Re: County Sovereignty, Vol 1, No. 1
Message-ID: <1996Jan5.115613.1579@usp>
Date: 5 Jan 96 11:56:13 +1200
Organization: The University of the South Pacific

forman@netcom.com (frank forman) wrote on Mon, 1 Jan 1996 00:05:17 GMT:

> Summary: "Why Governments Will Devolve"
> Keywords: Politics, Philosophy, Culture, Future, Law
> 
> COUNTY SOVEREIGNTY
> Volume 1, Number 1
> 1996 January 1
> Frank Forman, editor
> 
> Welcome to a new e-zine! This first issue is
> made up of an essay by myself. Future issues
> will report on the county sovereignty movement
> in the American West, where sheriffs have been
> telling federal officials to stay out unless
> they have permission.
[snip]
> There is nothing in philosophy or political
> theory that says governments have to be of any
> specific size. They only say what governments
> *should* do, not how big they ought to be. 
[snip]
> However far devolution goes, county sovereignty
> should become an ideal or benchmark against
> which to compare reality.

That general idea coincides with a statement that I made during a
conversation in 1970 about the current distribution of power being an
"anomalous inversion".  Since then I have aged much and wisened
slightly, so the following comments come to mind.

1.  By what method can optimized boundaries of jurisdiction be
calculated?  The historical criteria that the article mentioned "...
often described as no larger than a horse-and-buggy's day drive from the
county seat ..." surely cannot apply to all legitimate functions of
government nowadays.  The article does say 

     > Counties can certainly cooperate with one
     > another, and of course they will, from such
     > elementary things as making sure roads connect
     > at county boundaries and on up to coordinating
     > contract and tort law. The counties may, and
     > will, empower governments at the state level to
     > do these various jobs of coordination, but the
     > states will not be granted the power to tax. At
     > the next higher level, states can cooperate with
     > each other and empower a federal government, but
     > it, too will have no power to tax. And nations
     > can cooperate with one another, too, as they do
     > through several dozen international bodies

but as long as we are in the business of devolution, it might be
worthwhile to determine what determines the optimum granularity for each
such function.  I suspect that cultural factors will be important in
some cases, because some groups have very different ideas about what is
the best way to design a government.

2.   The geographical scope of the movement is perhaps deliberately
limited to the USA, but unfortunately the rest of the world exerts
significant force, and  USA /= World  in many regards.  In particular,
immigration control will be necessary for a long time yet simply because
the labour-demand spectrum in USA does not match the excess-labour-
supply spectrum of the world, and even the USA cannot meet the needs of
everyone who would like to come in.  Thus, global economic conditions
also come into the determination of optimized jurisdictions.

[Note from Frank: I certainly agree that immigration may
have to be handled at the national level, for counties and
states may compete for cheap labor and not concern
themselves that the *children* of immigrants, who will tend
to regress to the population means of their homelands, may
become non-producers or otherwise alter the cultural
landscape.]

3.  > Corporations around the world are "delayering"
    > by thinning out ranks of middle managers

     The discussion of de-layering of organisations did not mention one
important distinction between middle management and top management,
namely this:  top management is concerned with making the size and type
of the organisation continuously track its niche in the changing socio-
economic-political environment, while middle management is concerned
with holding the current organisation together and making it work now. 
The requirements for information, skills, and concepts of the two levels
are not identical.  The need for both levels to exist will always be
present; and whether or not they can be fulfilled by fewer persons
having more information is a good question.  If the answer is Yes, then
those persons will have to have a broader and higher profile of
abilities, and that means greater selectivity and higher salaries.  Is
our socio-economic-educational system sufficiently developed to support
that situation and still keep unemployment down to acceptable levels, or
will USA suffer that common symptom of the underdevelopment syndrome in
which the skilled persons are overworked and highly paid while the
under-skilled are under-employed?
     Well, we can of course answer "I hope so", or "Ideally, yes", or
"Eventually", but it might take a few generations - if not centuries -
for the socio-economic-educational system to catch up with the change in
technology.  (As always everywhere)
     A good middle manager is not just a high-speed paper pusher; he is
an expediter, a problem-solver, and a rip-stopper.  Top management must
not have to spend time on such problems as theft of tools, personality
conflicts between machine operators, etc., although they might want to see
the statistics of occurrence of such problems, plus an analysis of
impacts, plans for remediation, etc. - all of which the middle managers
must produce and then follow through to completion.  Of course, the better
the quality and reliability of the Men, Money, Materials, Machines, and
Methods, the less need for Middle Managers, but that need decreases only
asymptotically towards zero.  And even if information were to become
perfect, complete, and free, that would not eliminate all counter-
productive attitudes, concepts, and principles of the customers,
suppliers, stockholders, workers, managers, and community members.


Jim Farmer

-----------------------------------

Doug Schell sent me this e-mail:

From: drschell@nando.net (Doug Schell)

BTW, have you read Sam Sherwood's book "The Little
Republics: The Restoration of the Balance of Power 
at the Local Levels vs. the Federal Levels of Government?" 
Chapter 5 talks about specific action and steps in
making the transition.  Can be gotten at:

Hawkes Publishing
Box 65735
Salt Lake City, UT 84165
(801) 266-5555

I believe it costs about $25.

----------------------------------------

Steve Washam  put me onto an e-
mail list, liberty-and-justice. It contains many news articles (a great
number of which are due to Steve's good efforts) about the actual
revolts going on in several of the western states as well as news on
many other topics posted by those dissatisfied with the current
Federal government. There is a fairly high amount of noise; so be
prepared to go through about 30-40 e-mails a day to get some good
stuff. To subscribe, send the message,

"subscribe liberty-and-justice  ",

to majordomo@pobox.com.

----------------------------

FINAL WORDS: 

1. Write at some length (400 words or 2000 Bytes. I'm trying to do
more than run an opinion poll!

2. Say where you are reading this from.

3. THINK county sovereignty. It's not a solution to all problems,
but we should look at things from this bottom-up perspective and
imagine how the workings of the larger society would emerge.

4. "County sovereignty" is a 'meme' I am inflicting upon the world,
which is why this is being posted to alt.memetics. Hope we get a
good analysis.

5. In the table in my essay, I listed "elitist" in the One Party"
column and "pluralist" in the "Two Parties" column. I read
somewhere many years ago that sociologists look for elites and keep
finding pluralities, while political scientists look for pluralities and
keep finding elites. (Or maybe it was the other way around.) So this
essay has obvious relevance to an e-mail group discussing elitism,
which is why it is being sent to them.


From forman@netcom.com Sat Mar  2 15:58:12 PST 1996
Article: 32751 of alt.activism
Newsgroups: alt.philosophy.objectivism,misc.legal,alt.memetics,sci.philosophy.meta,talk.politics.theory,alt.postmodern,alt.extropians,soc.culture.intercultural,alt.pissed.federal.employees,alt.politics.reform,alt.politics.democrats.d,alt.activism,alt.discrimination,alt.politics.correct,alt.conspiracy,talk.politics.guns,alt.politics.usa.constitution,alt.society.conservatism,alt.fan.newt-gingrich,alt.politics.nationalism.white,talk.politics.libertarian,alt.politics.radical-left
Path: nizkor.almanac.bc.ca!news.island.net!news.bctel.net!news.cyberstore.ca!helix.net!unixg.ubc.ca!info.ucla.edu!newsfeed.internetmci.com!howland.reston.ans.net!ix.netcom.com!netcom.com!forman
From: forman@netcom.com (frank forman)
Subject: CS2: One Political Party or Two?
Message-ID: 
Keywords: County Sovereignty, Politics
Organization: NETCOM On-line Communication Services (408 261-4700 guest)
Distribution: inet
Date: Fri, 1 Mar 1996 14:27:07 GMT
Lines: 445
Sender: forman@netcom22.netcom.com
Xref: nizkor.almanac.bc.ca alt.philosophy.objectivism:62025 misc.legal:11763 alt.memetics:1579 sci.philosophy.meta:16029 talk.politics.theory:58061 alt.postmodern:20981 alt.politics.reform:54612 alt.politics.democrats.d:58454 alt.activism:32751 alt.discrimination:43908 alt.politics.correct:85608 alt.conspiracy:34204 talk.politics.guns:238205 alt.politics.usa.constitution:51335 alt.society.conservatism:34212 alt.politics.nationalism.white:14799 talk.politics.libertarian:70318 alt.politics.radical-left:76764

COUNTY SOVEREIGNTY
Volume 1, Number 2
1996 March 1
Frank Forman, editor
forman@netcom.com

[As you read the essay, try to keep in mind the county sovereignty
ideal. Does it matter whether there are one or two parties at the
county level? Which is the general reality today? The essay is mostly
about how many parties there are at the national level. Would this
change if counties held the bulk of governmental power?]

ONE POLITICAL PARTY OR TWO?
by Frank Forman
1996 March 1 (revised from 1993 April 25)

Everyone is at least somewhat myopic, and it is primarily those close
to the political center that can see big differences between the
Democrats and the Republicans. Those away from the center, the
"extremists," see no essential differences between the two major
parties. Far leftists claim that capitalism and fascism are the "same."
Far rightists, likewise, see only one party, the
Demicans/Republicrats.

Maybe we should not expect much of a difference between the two
parties in a two-party democracy. If the Democrats moved away
>from  the center to the left, the Republicans capture all the votes to
the right of center, plus half the votes from the center to the
Democrats. In the next election, the losing Democrats are sure to
move their platform back to the center.

We see exactly the same things with two competing hot dog stands
on a beach. Suppose the beach were a mile long and the bathers
placed evenly throughout. From the point of view of the customers,
the best place for the two stands would be at one-third and two-
thirds of a mile along the beach. This would minimize the distance
the average customer would have to walk to get a hot dog. But if the
second hot dog proprietor moved his stand to the center, he would
still get all the customers he got before and add many customers who
have been patronizing the first hot dog stand. Eventually, the two
stands would wind up next to each other in the middle.

This is not an ideal solution, and the proprietors have a real
incentive to make an antitrust agreement to split up the market and
put their stands at one-third and two-thirds of a mile. In politics,
however, this would result in radical swings of policy whenever one
set of bums was thrown out and another set put in. It would take a
real "extremist," one who was not even on the beach, to see no
differences between the two parties. These swings have taken place
in other countries, where politics is much more ideological than
here, where politicians dispense with more than just handouts to
various constituencies. Except for the Civil War, politics has been
pretty non-ideological in this country, despite all the rhetoric, and it
is quite possible to argue that the corresponding stability is a good
thing.

Thus the case that there is only "one" political part in the United
State and that this is not something to really complain about. If there
were only one hot dog stand, it should indeed be placed half a mile
along the beach. The complaints about our country's political system
should not be directed at two-party democracy, which leaves the
fewest dissatisfied voters, but with the voters themselves. They want,
and get, far too much government, and government of the wrong
sort.

One the other hand, a case can be made that there are really *two*
parties, as the great John C. Calhoun foresaw in his _Disquisition on
Government_, that of the taxpayers and that of the taxeaters (not his
term). The Republicans are the non-unionized wage earners and most
of the businessmen; the Democrats are the welfare and Social
Security recipients and government employees. There have been
more net taxeaters than net taxpayers in this country for over twenty
years, and so the Democrats have maintained healthy majorities at all
levels except for the Presidency itself throughout most of this period.

Here are the two views and their corresponding dualities (discussion
welcome!):

ONE PARTY                       TWO PARTIES

Elitist                         Pluralist
Ruling Class                    Masses
Domination                      Common Advantages
Positive Power                  Veto Power
Conspiracy                      Spontaneous Order
Hidden Hand                     Invisible Hand
Ideology                        Self-Interest
Taxeaters                       Pressure Groups
Coercion                        Consensus
Conflict Model                  Integrationist Model
Exploitative                    Cooperative
Karl Marx                       Max Weber

BUT NEITHER:
Left-Wing                       Right-Wing
NOR:
Right-Wing                      Left-Wing


But however much the natural constituency of the part of the
taxeaters differs from that of the part of the taxpayers, the political
*platforms* have come to resemble each other. One calls for $1.7
trillion in federal spending per year; the other calls for only $1.6
Terradollars. One calls for extending civil rights protection to
homosexuals; the other calls for holding the line. Only irresponsible
right-wing "extremists" call for repeal of civil rights legislation or
reducing the role of the federal government to what it was under
Jimmy Carter.

There is a paradox here. There really are such things as taxpayers
and taxeaters, whence the analogy with the hot dog stands along the
beach breaks down, but you wouldn't know it from listening to
politicians or looking at their voting records. Maybe we are so
relentlessly non-ideological that we cannot make the simple
distinction between taxpayers and taxeaters. Maybe we have been so
bamboozled by the ideology of egalitarianism and what Ayn Rand
called altruism that we do not see that the taxeaters have no authentic
right to the earnings of the taxpayers. This takes us back to the
beach: the hot dog stand to the left caters to those who want more
for the taxeaters, while the stand to the right caters to those who
want less. The stands themselves are located next to each other, in
the middle and thus just where the voters want them.

The extremist who is not on the beach at all and sees the two parties
as "one" party is, then, someone who sees (probably without
realizing it) an ideological racket at work. He would, if he could,
come in and sell hamburgers. This is, I submit, what the Middle
American Radicals (MARs) are all about. Their wishes, to be left
alone, not to be harassed with taxes and regulations, have been
forgotten. It will take the kind of political entrepreneur called a
populist to make their voices heard. But he cannot be too loud about
it. The MARs have assimilated too much egalitarianism, altruism,
and globaloney to be comfortable with a populist who emphatically
rejects them all. Populists in fact cast their rhetoric in egalitarian
terms, whatever they really believe, just as closet atheists in the
Middle Ages cast their arguments in terms of Christianity. Ross
Perot's political positions, whenever he stated any, were generally
between those of the Demicans and the Republicrats.

As the Middle American Radicals see it, then, there are indeed the
taxpayers vs. the taxeaters. It's just that the Demicans and
Republicrats are *jointly* the taxeaters, while they, the MARs, are
the taxpayers. So there is "one" party, with the taxpayers not
represented at all. How is it, then, that the Republi*cans* are
taxeaters? They are made up, after all, largely of non-unionized
workers and businessmen. Don't businessmen object to all the taxes
they pay? Well, they would rather not pay them, but they may very
well think they are able to pass all the taxes on to the consumers,
those Forgotten Americans, William Graham Sumner's term for
those whose function in life is to pay. This *appearance* of an
ability to pass on taxes is bolstered by another astonishing ability of
men, even businessmen, to internalize whatever morality racket rules
the day. This is especially true of big business and big banksters.
They prattle endlessly about global responsibility and North-South
dialogue. They are *liberal* Republicans. A Middle American
Radical cannot but suspect that they are also on the take.

Are they? They manage to get tariffs and "voluntary" import quotas.
Worse, the banksters are convinced that the taxpayers will bail them
out when their foolish loans to Third World dictators fail to be
repaid. And a good many businessmen are protected from
competition by regulatory commissions. The airlines are no longer,
so it seems, but when they fail in open competitions they hide under
ridiculously lenient bankruptcy laws and continue to operate. It
seems, at least to MARs, that we have socialism for the big boys
and free enterprise for small businesses.

However, if one tries to total up the rakeoff big business manages to
get for itself, especially in comparison with the Human Betterment
Industry (health, education, and welfare--the latter two almost
entirely subsidized by taxes), it is not plausible to think big
businesses are net taxeaters. Why their leaders go along with, and
often publicly affirm, egalitarianism, altruism, and globaloney, can
be explained by the fact that they pretty much have to. In the old
days, businesses were run by engineers. Later the accountants took
over (or rather accountants became the CEOs), not necessarily such
a bad thing, since engineers do not keep profits uppermost in mind.
Profits are small in relation to total sales (they run about four
percent), and if a few product lines look splendid to the engineers
who designed them, but cost too much to make or fail to sell for
more than they cost, then the company will be bested in competition.

Now government regulations and arcane provisions in the tax code
have come to make up an often very significant fraction of this four
percent. This has meant that big businesses are more and more being
run by lawyers with political connections than by accountants or
engineers. Any lawyer that came across like Ayn Rand's Hank
Rearden (basically an engineer) in front of Congressional staff would
be thrown out. It's the smoothies who get those little changes made
in regulations and the tax codes that make a tremendous difference in
the bottom line. It is not the least unlikely that many lawyer-
businessmen will come to believe their own talk about
egalitarianism, altruism, and globaloney.

In fact, they came to believe their own compromised posturings a
good many decades ago and are now far from allies of the Middle
American Radicals. They have come to think, in their more cynical
moods, that they are ahead of the game and rip off others more than
they are ripped off themselves. So it looks there is "one" political
party after all. Then again, just maybe businessmen could see
themselves as taxpayers and wrest control of their businesses from
the lawyers.

And then yet again....  I stop, to give the readers a change to render
their own opinion on how many political parties there are in the
United States, and to suggest what can be done. But PLEASE don't
just give a quickie response: I'm not taking a poll and want some
really hard thinking here. Write at least 400 words (2000 Bytes),
read this piece over again, and then revise it. Please also let us know
where you are reading this from.

And try to refrain from suggesting that the MARs become an
organized and hence a new group of taxeaters. *Someone* has to do
the work!

[end of essay]
----------------------------------

CONNECTION TO COUNTY SOVEREIGNTY

The theme of this e-zine, namely county sovereignty, is not
obviously connected to the essay you just read, and I posed some
questions at the beginning. My answer is that voting with one's feet
would render it relatively unimportant whether there were "one" or
"two" parties in a given county. I have no knowledge of how many
of the 3200 counties in this country have active two-party systems,
but I would say that there is less taxpayer vs. taxeater at the county
level than at state and national levels. Note that there does not have
to be many competit*ors* for there to be competit*ion*. The threat
of entry always looms. And the best way to avoid this threat is to
keep your prices low and quality always improving. But sometimes,
as in the big city machines, a monopoly party can often retain its
power by enlisting the graveyard vote.

Here's a statement from a world historian:

"The balance shifts more toward 'capitalism' (without ever coming
close) as states are small, weak and numerous, more toward
'statism' as they are few, strong and large."

David Wilkinson, "Central Civilization," in Stephen K. Sanderson,
ed., _Civilizations and World Systems: Studying World-Historical
Change_ (Walnut Creek: PA: AltaMira Press, 1995), p. 67.

-------------------------------------

NOTES ON THE FIRST ISSUE:

We got about fifty articles in the thread and subsidiary subject
headers within the thread on the UseNet groups. I think some of
them are still going but all have gotten far away from the original
subject of county sovereignty.

----------------------------------

I thank Louis Epstein for correcting my estimate of 2000 counties
with more like 3200.

----------------------------------

Of the many postings, the most thoughtful one appeared only on
sci.philosophy.meta, but its author, Jim Farmer, sent a copy to me
by e-mail. Here it is:

From: farmer_jl@usp.ac.fj (Jim Farmer)
Newsgroups: sci.philosophy.meta
Subject: Re: County Sovereignty, Vol 1, No. 1
Message-ID: <1996Jan5.115613.1579@usp>
Date: 5 Jan 96 11:56:13 +1200
Organization: The University of the South Pacific

forman@netcom.com (frank forman) wrote on Mon, 1 Jan 1996 00:05:17 GMT:

> Summary: "Why Governments Will Devolve"
> Keywords: Politics, Philosophy, Culture, Future, Law
> 
> COUNTY SOVEREIGNTY
> Volume 1, Number 1
> 1996 January 1
> Frank Forman, editor
> 
> Welcome to a new e-zine! This first issue is
> made up of an essay by myself. Future issues
> will report on the county sovereignty movement
> in the American West, where sheriffs have been
> telling federal officials to stay out unless
> they have permission.
[snip]
> There is nothing in philosophy or political
> theory that says governments have to be of any
> specific size. They only say what governments
> *should* do, not how big they ought to be. 
[snip]
> However far devolution goes, county sovereignty
> should become an ideal or benchmark against
> which to compare reality.

That general idea coincides with a statement that I made during a
conversation in 1970 about the current distribution of power being an
"anomalous inversion".  Since then I have aged much and wisened
slightly, so the following comments come to mind.

1.  By what method can optimized boundaries of jurisdiction be
calculated?  The historical criteria that the article mentioned "...
often described as no larger than a horse-and-buggy's day drive from the
county seat ..." surely cannot apply to all legitimate functions of
government nowadays.  The article does say 

     > Counties can certainly cooperate with one
     > another, and of course they will, from such
     > elementary things as making sure roads connect
     > at county boundaries and on up to coordinating
     > contract and tort law. The counties may, and
     > will, empower governments at the state level to
     > do these various jobs of coordination, but the
     > states will not be granted the power to tax. At
     > the next higher level, states can cooperate with
     > each other and empower a federal government, but
     > it, too will have no power to tax. And nations
     > can cooperate with one another, too, as they do
     > through several dozen international bodies

but as long as we are in the business of devolution, it might be
worthwhile to determine what determines the optimum granularity for each
such function.  I suspect that cultural factors will be important in
some cases, because some groups have very different ideas about what is
the best way to design a government.

2.   The geographical scope of the movement is perhaps deliberately
limited to the USA, but unfortunately the rest of the world exerts
significant force, and  USA /= World  in many regards.  In particular,
immigration control will be necessary for a long time yet simply because
the labour-demand spectrum in USA does not match the excess-labour-
supply spectrum of the world, and even the USA cannot meet the needs of
everyone who would like to come in.  Thus, global economic conditions
also come into the determination of optimized jurisdictions.

[Note from Frank: I certainly agree that immigration may
have to be handled at the national level, for counties and
states may compete for cheap labor and not concern
themselves that the *children* of immigrants, who will tend
to regress to the population means of their homelands, may
become non-producers or otherwise alter the cultural
landscape.]

3.  > Corporations around the world are "delayering"
    > by thinning out ranks of middle managers

     The discussion of de-layering of organisations did not mention one
important distinction between middle management and top management,
namely this:  top management is concerned with making the size and type
of the organisation continuously track its niche in the changing socio-
economic-political environment, while middle management is concerned
with holding the current organisation together and making it work now. 
The requirements for information, skills, and concepts of the two levels
are not identical.  The need for both levels to exist will always be
present; and whether or not they can be fulfilled by fewer persons
having more information is a good question.  If the answer is Yes, then
those persons will have to have a broader and higher profile of
abilities, and that means greater selectivity and higher salaries.  Is
our socio-economic-educational system sufficiently developed to support
that situation and still keep unemployment down to acceptable levels, or
will USA suffer that common symptom of the underdevelopment syndrome in
which the skilled persons are overworked and highly paid while the
under-skilled are under-employed?
     Well, we can of course answer "I hope so", or "Ideally, yes", or
"Eventually", but it might take a few generations - if not centuries -
for the socio-economic-educational system to catch up with the change in
technology.  (As always everywhere)
     A good middle manager is not just a high-speed paper pusher; he is
an expediter, a problem-solver, and a rip-stopper.  Top management must
not have to spend time on such problems as theft of tools, personality
conflicts between machine operators, etc., although they might want to see
the statistics of occurrence of such problems, plus an analysis of
impacts, plans for remediation, etc. - all of which the middle managers
must produce and then follow through to completion.  Of course, the better
the quality and reliability of the Men, Money, Materials, Machines, and
Methods, the less need for Middle Managers, but that need decreases only
asymptotically towards zero.  And even if information were to become
perfect, complete, and free, that would not eliminate all counter-
productive attitudes, concepts, and principles of the customers,
suppliers, stockholders, workers, managers, and community members.


Jim Farmer

-----------------------------------

Doug Schell sent me this e-mail:

From: drschell@nando.net (Doug Schell)

BTW, have you read Sam Sherwood's book "The Little
Republics: The Restoration of the Balance of Power 
at the Local Levels vs. the Federal Levels of Government?" 
Chapter 5 talks about specific action and steps in
making the transition.  Can be gotten at:

Hawkes Publishing
Box 65735
Salt Lake City, UT 84165
(801) 266-5555

I believe it costs about $25.

----------------------------------------

Steve Washam  put me onto an e-
mail list, liberty-and-justice. It contains many news articles (a great
number of which are due to Steve's good efforts) about the actual
revolts going on in several of the western states as well as news on
many other topics posted by those dissatisfied with the current
Federal government. There is a fairly high amount of noise; so be
prepared to go through about 30-40 e-mails a day to get some good
stuff. To subscribe, send the message,

"subscribe liberty-and-justice  ",

to majordomo@pobox.com.

----------------------------

FINAL WORDS: 

1. Write at some length (400 words or 2000 Bytes. I'm trying to do
more than run an opinion poll!

2. Say where you are reading this from.

3. THINK county sovereignty. It's not a solution to all problems,
but we should look at things from this bottom-up perspective and
imagine how the workings of the larger society would emerge.

4. "County sovereignty" is a 'meme' I am inflicting upon the world,
which is why this is being posted to alt.memetics. Hope we get a
good analysis.

5. In the table in my essay, I listed "elitist" in the One Party"
column and "pluralist" in the "Two Parties" column. I read
somewhere many years ago that sociologists look for elites and keep
finding pluralities, while political scientists look for pluralities and
keep finding elites. (Or maybe it was the other way around.) So this
essay has obvious relevance to an e-mail group discussing elitism,
which is why it is being sent to them.


From forman@netcom.com Sat Mar  2 16:11:30 PST 1996
Article: 339128 of talk.politics.misc
Newsgroups: alt.philosophy.objectivism,sci.philosophy.meta,sci.anthropology,talk.politics.theory,talk.politics.misc,soc.couples.intercultural,alt.politics.reform,alt.politics.democrats.d,alt.activism,alt.discrimination,alt.politics.correct,alt.poli,talk.politics.misc
Path: nizkor.almanac.bc.ca!news.island.net!news.bctel.net!imci2!news.internetMCI.com!newsfeed.internetmci.com!howland.reston.ans.net!ix.netcom.com!netcom.com!forman
From: forman@netcom.com (frank forman)
Subject: Biological race in *animals* doesn't exist.
Message-ID: 
Organization: NETCOM On-line Communication Services (408 261-4700 guest)
References: <4gt93u$qsn@utdallas.edu> <4h2cvr$stl@utdallas.edu> <31364fde.25586809@nntp.ix.netcom.com> <4h7gs3$6ge@utdallas.edu>
Distribution: inet
Date: Sat, 2 Mar 1996 21:03:21 GMT
Lines: 14
Sender: forman@netcom15.netcom.com
Xref: nizkor.almanac.bc.ca alt.philosophy.objectivism:62101 sci.philosophy.meta:16046 sci.anthropology:742 talk.politics.theory:58189 talk.politics.misc:339128 soc.couples.intercultural:15372 alt.politics.reform:54731 alt.politics.democrats.d:58684 alt.activism:32973 alt.discrimination:43991 alt.politics.correct:85806

I changed the title of the subject line from "Biological race in *humans* 
doesn't exist." Perhaps it should have been better titled "Biological 
race in humans has not been shown to exist to my satisfaction." Those 
dissatisfied either say that racial typologigists  disagree on the number 
of races (but "splitters" will always come up with more races than the 
"lumpers"). Or else the proper microbiolgical research has not been 
carried out (which presumes that microbiology is the only way to make 
taxonomies).

I ask: is there a single case of races having been shown to exist in any 
animal, with the same standards of evidence you demand for races to be 
shown to exist in humans?

Frank


From forman@netcom.com Sun Mar  3 08:55:00 PST 1996
Article: 32973 of alt.activism
Newsgroups: alt.philosophy.objectivism,sci.philosophy.meta,sci.anthropology,talk.politics.theory,talk.politics.misc,soc.couples.intercultural,alt.politics.reform,alt.politics.democrats.d,alt.activism,alt.discrimination,alt.politics.correct,alt.poli,talk.politics.misc
Path: nizkor.almanac.bc.ca!news.island.net!news.bctel.net!imci2!news.internetMCI.com!newsfeed.internetmci.com!howland.reston.ans.net!ix.netcom.com!netcom.com!forman
From: forman@netcom.com (frank forman)
Subject: Biological race in *animals* doesn't exist.
Message-ID: 
Organization: NETCOM On-line Communication Services (408 261-4700 guest)
References: <4gt93u$qsn@utdallas.edu> <4h2cvr$stl@utdallas.edu> <31364fde.25586809@nntp.ix.netcom.com> <4h7gs3$6ge@utdallas.edu>
Distribution: inet
Date: Sat, 2 Mar 1996 21:03:21 GMT
Lines: 14
Sender: forman@netcom15.netcom.com
Xref: nizkor.almanac.bc.ca alt.philosophy.objectivism:62101 sci.philosophy.meta:16046 sci.anthropology:742 talk.politics.theory:58189 talk.politics.misc:339128 soc.couples.intercultural:15372 alt.politics.reform:54731 alt.politics.democrats.d:58684 alt.activism:32973 alt.discrimination:43991 alt.politics.correct:85806

I changed the title of the subject line from "Biological race in *humans* 
doesn't exist." Perhaps it should have been better titled "Biological 
race in humans has not been shown to exist to my satisfaction." Those 
dissatisfied either say that racial typologigists  disagree on the number 
of races (but "splitters" will always come up with more races than the 
"lumpers"). Or else the proper microbiolgical research has not been 
carried out (which presumes that microbiology is the only way to make 
taxonomies).

I ask: is there a single case of races having been shown to exist in any 
animal, with the same standards of evidence you demand for races to be 
shown to exist in humans?

Frank


From forman@netcom.com Sun Mar  3 09:07:05 PST 1996
Article: 238205 of talk.politics.guns
Newsgroups: alt.philosophy.objectivism,misc.legal,alt.memetics,sci.philosophy.meta,talk.politics.theory,alt.postmodern,alt.extropians,soc.culture.intercultural,alt.pissed.federal.employees,alt.politics.reform,alt.politics.democrats.d,alt.activism,alt.discrimination,alt.politics.correct,alt.conspiracy,talk.politics.guns,alt.politics.usa.constitution,alt.society.conservatism,alt.fan.newt-gingrich,alt.politics.nationalism.white,talk.politics.libertarian,alt.politics.radical-left
Path: nizkor.almanac.bc.ca!news.island.net!news.bctel.net!news.cyberstore.ca!helix.net!unixg.ubc.ca!info.ucla.edu!newsfeed.internetmci.com!howland.reston.ans.net!ix.netcom.com!netcom.com!forman
From: forman@netcom.com (frank forman)
Subject: CS2: One Political Party or Two?
Message-ID: 
Keywords: County Sovereignty, Politics
Organization: NETCOM On-line Communication Services (408 261-4700 guest)
Distribution: inet
Date: Fri, 1 Mar 1996 14:27:07 GMT
Lines: 445
Sender: forman@netcom22.netcom.com
Xref: nizkor.almanac.bc.ca alt.philosophy.objectivism:62025 misc.legal:11763 alt.memetics:1579 sci.philosophy.meta:16029 talk.politics.theory:58061 alt.postmodern:20981 alt.politics.reform:54612 alt.politics.democrats.d:58454 alt.activism:32751 alt.discrimination:43908 alt.politics.correct:85608 alt.conspiracy:34204 talk.politics.guns:238205 alt.politics.usa.constitution:51335 alt.society.conservatism:34212 alt.politics.nationalism.white:14799 talk.politics.libertarian:70318 alt.politics.radical-left:76764

COUNTY SOVEREIGNTY
Volume 1, Number 2
1996 March 1
Frank Forman, editor
forman@netcom.com

[As you read the essay, try to keep in mind the county sovereignty
ideal. Does it matter whether there are one or two parties at the
county level? Which is the general reality today? The essay is mostly
about how many parties there are at the national level. Would this
change if counties held the bulk of governmental power?]

ONE POLITICAL PARTY OR TWO?
by Frank Forman
1996 March 1 (revised from 1993 April 25)

Everyone is at least somewhat myopic, and it is primarily those close
to the political center that can see big differences between the
Democrats and the Republicans. Those away from the center, the
"extremists," see no essential differences between the two major
parties. Far leftists claim that capitalism and fascism are the "same."
Far rightists, likewise, see only one party, the
Demicans/Republicrats.

Maybe we should not expect much of a difference between the two
parties in a two-party democracy. If the Democrats moved away
>from  the center to the left, the Republicans capture all the votes to
the right of center, plus half the votes from the center to the
Democrats. In the next election, the losing Democrats are sure to
move their platform back to the center.

We see exactly the same things with two competing hot dog stands
on a beach. Suppose the beach were a mile long and the bathers
placed evenly throughout. From the point of view of the customers,
the best place for the two stands would be at one-third and two-
thirds of a mile along the beach. This would minimize the distance
the average customer would have to walk to get a hot dog. But if the
second hot dog proprietor moved his stand to the center, he would
still get all the customers he got before and add many customers who
have been patronizing the first hot dog stand. Eventually, the two
stands would wind up next to each other in the middle.

This is not an ideal solution, and the proprietors have a real
incentive to make an antitrust agreement to split up the market and
put their stands at one-third and two-thirds of a mile. In politics,
however, this would result in radical swings of policy whenever one
set of bums was thrown out and another set put in. It would take a
real "extremist," one who was not even on the beach, to see no
differences between the two parties. These swings have taken place
in other countries, where politics is much more ideological than
here, where politicians dispense with more than just handouts to
various constituencies. Except for the Civil War, politics has been
pretty non-ideological in this country, despite all the rhetoric, and it
is quite possible to argue that the corresponding stability is a good
thing.

Thus the case that there is only "one" political part in the United
State and that this is not something to really complain about. If there
were only one hot dog stand, it should indeed be placed half a mile
along the beach. The complaints about our country's political system
should not be directed at two-party democracy, which leaves the
fewest dissatisfied voters, but with the voters themselves. They want,
and get, far too much government, and government of the wrong
sort.

One the other hand, a case can be made that there are really *two*
parties, as the great John C. Calhoun foresaw in his _Disquisition on
Government_, that of the taxpayers and that of the taxeaters (not his
term). The Republicans are the non-unionized wage earners and most
of the businessmen; the Democrats are the welfare and Social
Security recipients and government employees. There have been
more net taxeaters than net taxpayers in this country for over twenty
years, and so the Democrats have maintained healthy majorities at all
levels except for the Presidency itself throughout most of this period.

Here are the two views and their corresponding dualities (discussion
welcome!):

ONE PARTY                       TWO PARTIES

Elitist                         Pluralist
Ruling Class                    Masses
Domination                      Common Advantages
Positive Power                  Veto Power
Conspiracy                      Spontaneous Order
Hidden Hand                     Invisible Hand
Ideology                        Self-Interest
Taxeaters                       Pressure Groups
Coercion                        Consensus
Conflict Model                  Integrationist Model
Exploitative                    Cooperative
Karl Marx                       Max Weber

BUT NEITHER:
Left-Wing                       Right-Wing
NOR:
Right-Wing                      Left-Wing


But however much the natural constituency of the part of the
taxeaters differs from that of the part of the taxpayers, the political
*platforms* have come to resemble each other. One calls for $1.7
trillion in federal spending per year; the other calls for only $1.6
Terradollars. One calls for extending civil rights protection to
homosexuals; the other calls for holding the line. Only irresponsible
right-wing "extremists" call for repeal of civil rights legislation or
reducing the role of the federal government to what it was under
Jimmy Carter.

There is a paradox here. There really are such things as taxpayers
and taxeaters, whence the analogy with the hot dog stands along the
beach breaks down, but you wouldn't know it from listening to
politicians or looking at their voting records. Maybe we are so
relentlessly non-ideological that we cannot make the simple
distinction between taxpayers and taxeaters. Maybe we have been so
bamboozled by the ideology of egalitarianism and what Ayn Rand
called altruism that we do not see that the taxeaters have no authentic
right to the earnings of the taxpayers. This takes us back to the
beach: the hot dog stand to the left caters to those who want more
for the taxeaters, while the stand to the right caters to those who
want less. The stands themselves are located next to each other, in
the middle and thus just where the voters want them.

The extremist who is not on the beach at all and sees the two parties
as "one" party is, then, someone who sees (probably without
realizing it) an ideological racket at work. He would, if he could,
come in and sell hamburgers. This is, I submit, what the Middle
American Radicals (MARs) are all about. Their wishes, to be left
alone, not to be harassed with taxes and regulations, have been
forgotten. It will take the kind of political entrepreneur called a
populist to make their voices heard. But he cannot be too loud about
it. The MARs have assimilated too much egalitarianism, altruism,
and globaloney to be comfortable with a populist who emphatically
rejects them all. Populists in fact cast their rhetoric in egalitarian
terms, whatever they really believe, just as closet atheists in the
Middle Ages cast their arguments in terms of Christianity. Ross
Perot's political positions, whenever he stated any, were generally
between those of the Demicans and the Republicrats.

As the Middle American Radicals see it, then, there are indeed the
taxpayers vs. the taxeaters. It's just that the Demicans and
Republicrats are *jointly* the taxeaters, while they, the MARs, are
the taxpayers. So there is "one" party, with the taxpayers not
represented at all. How is it, then, that the Republi*cans* are
taxeaters? They are made up, after all, largely of non-unionized
workers and businessmen. Don't businessmen object to all the taxes
they pay? Well, they would rather not pay them, but they may very
well think they are able to pass all the taxes on to the consumers,
those Forgotten Americans, William Graham Sumner's term for
those whose function in life is to pay. This *appearance* of an
ability to pass on taxes is bolstered by another astonishing ability of
men, even businessmen, to internalize whatever morality racket rules
the day. This is especially true of big business and big banksters.
They prattle endlessly about global responsibility and North-South
dialogue. They are *liberal* Republicans. A Middle American
Radical cannot but suspect that they are also on the take.

Are they? They manage to get tariffs and "voluntary" import quotas.
Worse, the banksters are convinced that the taxpayers will bail them
out when their foolish loans to Third World dictators fail to be
repaid. And a good many businessmen are protected from
competition by regulatory commissions. The airlines are no longer,
so it seems, but when they fail in open competitions they hide under
ridiculously lenient bankruptcy laws and continue to operate. It
seems, at least to MARs, that we have socialism for the big boys
and free enterprise for small businesses.

However, if one tries to total up the rakeoff big business manages to
get for itself, especially in comparison with the Human Betterment
Industry (health, education, and welfare--the latter two almost
entirely subsidized by taxes), it is not plausible to think big
businesses are net taxeaters. Why their leaders go along with, and
often publicly affirm, egalitarianism, altruism, and globaloney, can
be explained by the fact that they pretty much have to. In the old
days, businesses were run by engineers. Later the accountants took
over (or rather accountants became the CEOs), not necessarily such
a bad thing, since engineers do not keep profits uppermost in mind.
Profits are small in relation to total sales (they run about four
percent), and if a few product lines look splendid to the engineers
who designed them, but cost too much to make or fail to sell for
more than they cost, then the company will be bested in competition.

Now government regulations and arcane provisions in the tax code
have come to make up an often very significant fraction of this four
percent. This has meant that big businesses are more and more being
run by lawyers with political connections than by accountants or
engineers. Any lawyer that came across like Ayn Rand's Hank
Rearden (basically an engineer) in front of Congressional staff would
be thrown out. It's the smoothies who get those little changes made
in regulations and the tax codes that make a tremendous difference in
the bottom line. It is not the least unlikely that many lawyer-
businessmen will come to believe their own talk about
egalitarianism, altruism, and globaloney.

In fact, they came to believe their own compromised posturings a
good many decades ago and are now far from allies of the Middle
American Radicals. They have come to think, in their more cynical
moods, that they are ahead of the game and rip off others more than
they are ripped off themselves. So it looks there is "one" political
party after all. Then again, just maybe businessmen could see
themselves as taxpayers and wrest control of their businesses from
the lawyers.

And then yet again....  I stop, to give the readers a change to render
their own opinion on how many political parties there are in the
United States, and to suggest what can be done. But PLEASE don't
just give a quickie response: I'm not taking a poll and want some
really hard thinking here. Write at least 400 words (2000 Bytes),
read this piece over again, and then revise it. Please also let us know
where you are reading this from.

And try to refrain from suggesting that the MARs become an
organized and hence a new group of taxeaters. *Someone* has to do
the work!

[end of essay]
----------------------------------

CONNECTION TO COUNTY SOVEREIGNTY

The theme of this e-zine, namely county sovereignty, is not
obviously connected to the essay you just read, and I posed some
questions at the beginning. My answer is that voting with one's feet
would render it relatively unimportant whether there were "one" or
"two" parties in a given county. I have no knowledge of how many
of the 3200 counties in this country have active two-party systems,
but I would say that there is less taxpayer vs. taxeater at the county
level than at state and national levels. Note that there does not have
to be many competit*ors* for there to be competit*ion*. The threat
of entry always looms. And the best way to avoid this threat is to
keep your prices low and quality always improving. But sometimes,
as in the big city machines, a monopoly party can often retain its
power by enlisting the graveyard vote.

Here's a statement from a world historian:

"The balance shifts more toward 'capitalism' (without ever coming
close) as states are small, weak and numerous, more toward
'statism' as they are few, strong and large."

David Wilkinson, "Central Civilization," in Stephen K. Sanderson,
ed., _Civilizations and World Systems: Studying World-Historical
Change_ (Walnut Creek: PA: AltaMira Press, 1995), p. 67.

-------------------------------------

NOTES ON THE FIRST ISSUE:

We got about fifty articles in the thread and subsidiary subject
headers within the thread on the UseNet groups. I think some of
them are still going but all have gotten far away from the original
subject of county sovereignty.

----------------------------------

I thank Louis Epstein for correcting my estimate of 2000 counties
with more like 3200.

----------------------------------

Of the many postings, the most thoughtful one appeared only on
sci.philosophy.meta, but its author, Jim Farmer, sent a copy to me
by e-mail. Here it is:

From: farmer_jl@usp.ac.fj (Jim Farmer)
Newsgroups: sci.philosophy.meta
Subject: Re: County Sovereignty, Vol 1, No. 1
Message-ID: <1996Jan5.115613.1579@usp>
Date: 5 Jan 96 11:56:13 +1200
Organization: The University of the South Pacific

forman@netcom.com (frank forman) wrote on Mon, 1 Jan 1996 00:05:17 GMT:

> Summary: "Why Governments Will Devolve"
> Keywords: Politics, Philosophy, Culture, Future, Law
> 
> COUNTY SOVEREIGNTY
> Volume 1, Number 1
> 1996 January 1
> Frank Forman, editor
> 
> Welcome to a new e-zine! This first issue is
> made up of an essay by myself. Future issues
> will report on the county sovereignty movement
> in the American West, where sheriffs have been
> telling federal officials to stay out unless
> they have permission.
[snip]
> There is nothing in philosophy or political
> theory that says governments have to be of any
> specific size. They only say what governments
> *should* do, not how big they ought to be. 
[snip]
> However far devolution goes, county sovereignty
> should become an ideal or benchmark against
> which to compare reality.

That general idea coincides with a statement that I made during a
conversation in 1970 about the current distribution of power being an
"anomalous inversion".  Since then I have aged much and wisened
slightly, so the following comments come to mind.

1.  By what method can optimized boundaries of jurisdiction be
calculated?  The historical criteria that the article mentioned "...
often described as no larger than a horse-and-buggy's day drive from the
county seat ..." surely cannot apply to all legitimate functions of
government nowadays.  The article does say 

     > Counties can certainly cooperate with one
     > another, and of course they will, from such
     > elementary things as making sure roads connect
     > at county boundaries and on up to coordinating
     > contract and tort law. The counties may, and
     > will, empower governments at the state level to
     > do these various jobs of coordination, but the
     > states will not be granted the power to tax. At
     > the next higher level, states can cooperate with
     > each other and empower a federal government, but
     > it, too will have no power to tax. And nations
     > can cooperate with one another, too, as they do
     > through several dozen international bodies

but as long as we are in the business of devolution, it might be
worthwhile to determine what determines the optimum granularity for each
such function.  I suspect that cultural factors will be important in
some cases, because some groups have very different ideas about what is
the best way to design a government.

2.   The geographical scope of the movement is perhaps deliberately
limited to the USA, but unfortunately the rest of the world exerts
significant force, and  USA /= World  in many regards.  In particular,
immigration control will be necessary for a long time yet simply because
the labour-demand spectrum in USA does not match the excess-labour-
supply spectrum of the world, and even the USA cannot meet the needs of
everyone who would like to come in.  Thus, global economic conditions
also come into the determination of optimized jurisdictions.

[Note from Frank: I certainly agree that immigration may
have to be handled at the national level, for counties and
states may compete for cheap labor and not concern
themselves that the *children* of immigrants, who will tend
to regress to the population means of their homelands, may
become non-producers or otherwise alter the cultural
landscape.]

3.  > Corporations around the world are "delayering"
    > by thinning out ranks of middle managers

     The discussion of de-layering of organisations did not mention one
important distinction between middle management and top management,
namely this:  top management is concerned with making the size and type
of the organisation continuously track its niche in the changing socio-
economic-political environment, while middle management is concerned
with holding the current organisation together and making it work now. 
The requirements for information, skills, and concepts of the two levels
are not identical.  The need for both levels to exist will always be
present; and whether or not they can be fulfilled by fewer persons
having more information is a good question.  If the answer is Yes, then
those persons will have to have a broader and higher profile of
abilities, and that means greater selectivity and higher salaries.  Is
our socio-economic-educational system sufficiently developed to support
that situation and still keep unemployment down to acceptable levels, or
will USA suffer that common symptom of the underdevelopment syndrome in
which the skilled persons are overworked and highly paid while the
under-skilled are under-employed?
     Well, we can of course answer "I hope so", or "Ideally, yes", or
"Eventually", but it might take a few generations - if not centuries -
for the socio-economic-educational system to catch up with the change in
technology.  (As always everywhere)
     A good middle manager is not just a high-speed paper pusher; he is
an expediter, a problem-solver, and a rip-stopper.  Top management must
not have to spend time on such problems as theft of tools, personality
conflicts between machine operators, etc., although they might want to see
the statistics of occurrence of such problems, plus an analysis of
impacts, plans for remediation, etc. - all of which the middle managers
must produce and then follow through to completion.  Of course, the better
the quality and reliability of the Men, Money, Materials, Machines, and
Methods, the less need for Middle Managers, but that need decreases only
asymptotically towards zero.  And even if information were to become
perfect, complete, and free, that would not eliminate all counter-
productive attitudes, concepts, and principles of the customers,
suppliers, stockholders, workers, managers, and community members.


Jim Farmer

-----------------------------------

Doug Schell sent me this e-mail:

From: drschell@nando.net (Doug Schell)

BTW, have you read Sam Sherwood's book "The Little
Republics: The Restoration of the Balance of Power 
at the Local Levels vs. the Federal Levels of Government?" 
Chapter 5 talks about specific action and steps in
making the transition.  Can be gotten at:

Hawkes Publishing
Box 65735
Salt Lake City, UT 84165
(801) 266-5555

I believe it costs about $25.

----------------------------------------

Steve Washam  put me onto an e-
mail list, liberty-and-justice. It contains many news articles (a great
number of which are due to Steve's good efforts) about the actual
revolts going on in several of the western states as well as news on
many other topics posted by those dissatisfied with the current
Federal government. There is a fairly high amount of noise; so be
prepared to go through about 30-40 e-mails a day to get some good
stuff. To subscribe, send the message,

"subscribe liberty-and-justice  ",

to majordomo@pobox.com.

----------------------------

FINAL WORDS: 

1. Write at some length (400 words or 2000 Bytes. I'm trying to do
more than run an opinion poll!

2. Say where you are reading this from.

3. THINK county sovereignty. It's not a solution to all problems,
but we should look at things from this bottom-up perspective and
imagine how the workings of the larger society would emerge.

4. "County sovereignty" is a 'meme' I am inflicting upon the world,
which is why this is being posted to alt.memetics. Hope we get a
good analysis.

5. In the table in my essay, I listed "elitist" in the One Party"
column and "pluralist" in the "Two Parties" column. I read
somewhere many years ago that sociologists look for elites and keep
finding pluralities, while political scientists look for pluralities and
keep finding elites. (Or maybe it was the other way around.) So this
essay has obvious relevance to an e-mail group discussing elitism,
which is why it is being sent to them.


From forman@netcom.com Sun Mar  3 10:07:07 PST 1996
Article: 85608 of alt.politics.correct
Newsgroups: alt.philosophy.objectivism,misc.legal,alt.memetics,sci.philosophy.meta,talk.politics.theory,alt.postmodern,alt.extropians,soc.culture.intercultural,alt.pissed.federal.employees,alt.politics.reform,alt.politics.democrats.d,alt.activism,alt.discrimination,alt.politics.correct,alt.conspiracy,talk.politics.guns,alt.politics.usa.constitution,alt.society.conservatism,alt.fan.newt-gingrich,alt.politics.nationalism.white,talk.politics.libertarian,alt.politics.radical-left
Path: nizkor.almanac.bc.ca!news.island.net!news.bctel.net!news.cyberstore.ca!helix.net!unixg.ubc.ca!info.ucla.edu!newsfeed.internetmci.com!howland.reston.ans.net!ix.netcom.com!netcom.com!forman
From: forman@netcom.com (frank forman)
Subject: CS2: One Political Party or Two?
Message-ID: 
Keywords: County Sovereignty, Politics
Organization: NETCOM On-line Communication Services (408 261-4700 guest)
Distribution: inet
Date: Fri, 1 Mar 1996 14:27:07 GMT
Lines: 445
Sender: forman@netcom22.netcom.com
Xref: nizkor.almanac.bc.ca alt.philosophy.objectivism:62025 misc.legal:11763 alt.memetics:1579 sci.philosophy.meta:16029 talk.politics.theory:58061 alt.postmodern:20981 alt.politics.reform:54612 alt.politics.democrats.d:58454 alt.activism:32751 alt.discrimination:43908 alt.politics.correct:85608 alt.conspiracy:34204 talk.politics.guns:238205 alt.politics.usa.constitution:51335 alt.society.conservatism:34212 alt.politics.nationalism.white:14799 talk.politics.libertarian:70318 alt.politics.radical-left:76764

COUNTY SOVEREIGNTY
Volume 1, Number 2
1996 March 1
Frank Forman, editor
forman@netcom.com

[As you read the essay, try to keep in mind the county sovereignty
ideal. Does it matter whether there are one or two parties at the
county level? Which is the general reality today? The essay is mostly
about how many parties there are at the national level. Would this
change if counties held the bulk of governmental power?]

ONE POLITICAL PARTY OR TWO?
by Frank Forman
1996 March 1 (revised from 1993 April 25)

Everyone is at least somewhat myopic, and it is primarily those close
to the political center that can see big differences between the
Democrats and the Republicans. Those away from the center, the
"extremists," see no essential differences between the two major
parties. Far leftists claim that capitalism and fascism are the "same."
Far rightists, likewise, see only one party, the
Demicans/Republicrats.

Maybe we should not expect much of a difference between the two
parties in a two-party democracy. If the Democrats moved away
>from  the center to the left, the Republicans capture all the votes to
the right of center, plus half the votes from the center to the
Democrats. In the next election, the losing Democrats are sure to
move their platform back to the center.

We see exactly the same things with two competing hot dog stands
on a beach. Suppose the beach were a mile long and the bathers
placed evenly throughout. From the point of view of the customers,
the best place for the two stands would be at one-third and two-
thirds of a mile along the beach. This would minimize the distance
the average customer would have to walk to get a hot dog. But if the
second hot dog proprietor moved his stand to the center, he would
still get all the customers he got before and add many customers who
have been patronizing the first hot dog stand. Eventually, the two
stands would wind up next to each other in the middle.

This is not an ideal solution, and the proprietors have a real
incentive to make an antitrust agreement to split up the market and
put their stands at one-third and two-thirds of a mile. In politics,
however, this would result in radical swings of policy whenever one
set of bums was thrown out and another set put in. It would take a
real "extremist," one who was not even on the beach, to see no
differences between the two parties. These swings have taken place
in other countries, where politics is much more ideological than
here, where politicians dispense with more than just handouts to
various constituencies. Except for the Civil War, politics has been
pretty non-ideological in this country, despite all the rhetoric, and it
is quite possible to argue that the corresponding stability is a good
thing.

Thus the case that there is only "one" political part in the United
State and that this is not something to really complain about. If there
were only one hot dog stand, it should indeed be placed half a mile
along the beach. The complaints about our country's political system
should not be directed at two-party democracy, which leaves the
fewest dissatisfied voters, but with the voters themselves. They want,
and get, far too much government, and government of the wrong
sort.

One the other hand, a case can be made that there are really *two*
parties, as the great John C. Calhoun foresaw in his _Disquisition on
Government_, that of the taxpayers and that of the taxeaters (not his
term). The Republicans are the non-unionized wage earners and most
of the businessmen; the Democrats are the welfare and Social
Security recipients and government employees. There have been
more net taxeaters than net taxpayers in this country for over twenty
years, and so the Democrats have maintained healthy majorities at all
levels except for the Presidency itself throughout most of this period.

Here are the two views and their corresponding dualities (discussion
welcome!):

ONE PARTY                       TWO PARTIES

Elitist                         Pluralist
Ruling Class                    Masses
Domination                      Common Advantages
Positive Power                  Veto Power
Conspiracy                      Spontaneous Order
Hidden Hand                     Invisible Hand
Ideology                        Self-Interest
Taxeaters                       Pressure Groups
Coercion                        Consensus
Conflict Model                  Integrationist Model
Exploitative                    Cooperative
Karl Marx                       Max Weber

BUT NEITHER:
Left-Wing                       Right-Wing
NOR:
Right-Wing                      Left-Wing


But however much the natural constituency of the part of the
taxeaters differs from that of the part of the taxpayers, the political
*platforms* have come to resemble each other. One calls for $1.7
trillion in federal spending per year; the other calls for only $1.6
Terradollars. One calls for extending civil rights protection to
homosexuals; the other calls for holding the line. Only irresponsible
right-wing "extremists" call for repeal of civil rights legislation or
reducing the role of the federal government to what it was under
Jimmy Carter.

There is a paradox here. There really are such things as taxpayers
and taxeaters, whence the analogy with the hot dog stands along the
beach breaks down, but you wouldn't know it from listening to
politicians or looking at their voting records. Maybe we are so
relentlessly non-ideological that we cannot make the simple
distinction between taxpayers and taxeaters. Maybe we have been so
bamboozled by the ideology of egalitarianism and what Ayn Rand
called altruism that we do not see that the taxeaters have no authentic
right to the earnings of the taxpayers. This takes us back to the
beach: the hot dog stand to the left caters to those who want more
for the taxeaters, while the stand to the right caters to those who
want less. The stands themselves are located next to each other, in
the middle and thus just where the voters want them.

The extremist who is not on the beach at all and sees the two parties
as "one" party is, then, someone who sees (probably without
realizing it) an ideological racket at work. He would, if he could,
come in and sell hamburgers. This is, I submit, what the Middle
American Radicals (MARs) are all about. Their wishes, to be left
alone, not to be harassed with taxes and regulations, have been
forgotten. It will take the kind of political entrepreneur called a
populist to make their voices heard. But he cannot be too loud about
it. The MARs have assimilated too much egalitarianism, altruism,
and globaloney to be comfortable with a populist who emphatically
rejects them all. Populists in fact cast their rhetoric in egalitarian
terms, whatever they really believe, just as closet atheists in the
Middle Ages cast their arguments in terms of Christianity. Ross
Perot's political positions, whenever he stated any, were generally
between those of the Demicans and the Republicrats.

As the Middle American Radicals see it, then, there are indeed the
taxpayers vs. the taxeaters. It's just that the Demicans and
Republicrats are *jointly* the taxeaters, while they, the MARs, are
the taxpayers. So there is "one" party, with the taxpayers not
represented at all. How is it, then, that the Republi*cans* are
taxeaters? They are made up, after all, largely of non-unionized
workers and businessmen. Don't businessmen object to all the taxes
they pay? Well, they would rather not pay them, but they may very
well think they are able to pass all the taxes on to the consumers,
those Forgotten Americans, William Graham Sumner's term for
those whose function in life is to pay. This *appearance* of an
ability to pass on taxes is bolstered by another astonishing ability of
men, even businessmen, to internalize whatever morality racket rules
the day. This is especially true of big business and big banksters.
They prattle endlessly about global responsibility and North-South
dialogue. They are *liberal* Republicans. A Middle American
Radical cannot but suspect that they are also on the take.

Are they? They manage to get tariffs and "voluntary" import quotas.
Worse, the banksters are convinced that the taxpayers will bail them
out when their foolish loans to Third World dictators fail to be
repaid. And a good many businessmen are protected from
competition by regulatory commissions. The airlines are no longer,
so it seems, but when they fail in open competitions they hide under
ridiculously lenient bankruptcy laws and continue to operate. It
seems, at least to MARs, that we have socialism for the big boys
and free enterprise for small businesses.

However, if one tries to total up the rakeoff big business manages to
get for itself, especially in comparison with the Human Betterment
Industry (health, education, and welfare--the latter two almost
entirely subsidized by taxes), it is not plausible to think big
businesses are net taxeaters. Why their leaders go along with, and
often publicly affirm, egalitarianism, altruism, and globaloney, can
be explained by the fact that they pretty much have to. In the old
days, businesses were run by engineers. Later the accountants took
over (or rather accountants became the CEOs), not necessarily such
a bad thing, since engineers do not keep profits uppermost in mind.
Profits are small in relation to total sales (they run about four
percent), and if a few product lines look splendid to the engineers
who designed them, but cost too much to make or fail to sell for
more than they cost, then the company will be bested in competition.

Now government regulations and arcane provisions in the tax code
have come to make up an often very significant fraction of this four
percent. This has meant that big businesses are more and more being
run by lawyers with political connections than by accountants or
engineers. Any lawyer that came across like Ayn Rand's Hank
Rearden (basically an engineer) in front of Congressional staff would
be thrown out. It's the smoothies who get those little changes made
in regulations and the tax codes that make a tremendous difference in
the bottom line. It is not the least unlikely that many lawyer-
businessmen will come to believe their own talk about
egalitarianism, altruism, and globaloney.

In fact, they came to believe their own compromised posturings a
good many decades ago and are now far from allies of the Middle
American Radicals. They have come to think, in their more cynical
moods, that they are ahead of the game and rip off others more than
they are ripped off themselves. So it looks there is "one" political
party after all. Then again, just maybe businessmen could see
themselves as taxpayers and wrest control of their businesses from
the lawyers.

And then yet again....  I stop, to give the readers a change to render
their own opinion on how many political parties there are in the
United States, and to suggest what can be done. But PLEASE don't
just give a quickie response: I'm not taking a poll and want some
really hard thinking here. Write at least 400 words (2000 Bytes),
read this piece over again, and then revise it. Please also let us know
where you are reading this from.

And try to refrain from suggesting that the MARs become an
organized and hence a new group of taxeaters. *Someone* has to do
the work!

[end of essay]
----------------------------------

CONNECTION TO COUNTY SOVEREIGNTY

The theme of this e-zine, namely county sovereignty, is not
obviously connected to the essay you just read, and I posed some
questions at the beginning. My answer is that voting with one's feet
would render it relatively unimportant whether there were "one" or
"two" parties in a given county. I have no knowledge of how many
of the 3200 counties in this country have active two-party systems,
but I would say that there is less taxpayer vs. taxeater at the county
level than at state and national levels. Note that there does not have
to be many competit*ors* for there to be competit*ion*. The threat
of entry always looms. And the best way to avoid this threat is to
keep your prices low and quality always improving. But sometimes,
as in the big city machines, a monopoly party can often retain its
power by enlisting the graveyard vote.

Here's a statement from a world historian:

"The balance shifts more toward 'capitalism' (without ever coming
close) as states are small, weak and numerous, more toward
'statism' as they are few, strong and large."

David Wilkinson, "Central Civilization," in Stephen K. Sanderson,
ed., _Civilizations and World Systems: Studying World-Historical
Change_ (Walnut Creek: PA: AltaMira Press, 1995), p. 67.

-------------------------------------

NOTES ON THE FIRST ISSUE:

We got about fifty articles in the thread and subsidiary subject
headers within the thread on the UseNet groups. I think some of
them are still going but all have gotten far away from the original
subject of county sovereignty.

----------------------------------

I thank Louis Epstein for correcting my estimate of 2000 counties
with more like 3200.

----------------------------------

Of the many postings, the most thoughtful one appeared only on
sci.philosophy.meta, but its author, Jim Farmer, sent a copy to me
by e-mail. Here it is:

From: farmer_jl@usp.ac.fj (Jim Farmer)
Newsgroups: sci.philosophy.meta
Subject: Re: County Sovereignty, Vol 1, No. 1
Message-ID: <1996Jan5.115613.1579@usp>
Date: 5 Jan 96 11:56:13 +1200
Organization: The University of the South Pacific

forman@netcom.com (frank forman) wrote on Mon, 1 Jan 1996 00:05:17 GMT:

> Summary: "Why Governments Will Devolve"
> Keywords: Politics, Philosophy, Culture, Future, Law
> 
> COUNTY SOVEREIGNTY
> Volume 1, Number 1
> 1996 January 1
> Frank Forman, editor
> 
> Welcome to a new e-zine! This first issue is
> made up of an essay by myself. Future issues
> will report on the county sovereignty movement
> in the American West, where sheriffs have been
> telling federal officials to stay out unless
> they have permission.
[snip]
> There is nothing in philosophy or political
> theory that says governments have to be of any
> specific size. They only say what governments
> *should* do, not how big they ought to be. 
[snip]
> However far devolution goes, county sovereignty
> should become an ideal or benchmark against
> which to compare reality.

That general idea coincides with a statement that I made during a
conversation in 1970 about the current distribution of power being an
"anomalous inversion".  Since then I have aged much and wisened
slightly, so the following comments come to mind.

1.  By what method can optimized boundaries of jurisdiction be
calculated?  The historical criteria that the article mentioned "...
often described as no larger than a horse-and-buggy's day drive from the
county seat ..." surely cannot apply to all legitimate functions of
government nowadays.  The article does say 

     > Counties can certainly cooperate with one
     > another, and of course they will, from such
     > elementary things as making sure roads connect
     > at county boundaries and on up to coordinating
     > contract and tort law. The counties may, and
     > will, empower governments at the state level to
     > do these various jobs of coordination, but the
     > states will not be granted the power to tax. At
     > the next higher level, states can cooperate with
     > each other and empower a federal government, but
     > it, too will have no power to tax. And nations
     > can cooperate with one another, too, as they do
     > through several dozen international bodies

but as long as we are in the business of devolution, it might be
worthwhile to determine what determines the optimum granularity for each
such function.  I suspect that cultural factors will be important in
some cases, because some groups have very different ideas about what is
the best way to design a government.

2.   The geographical scope of the movement is perhaps deliberately
limited to the USA, but unfortunately the rest of the world exerts
significant force, and  USA /= World  in many regards.  In particular,
immigration control will be necessary for a long time yet simply because
the labour-demand spectrum in USA does not match the excess-labour-
supply spectrum of the world, and even the USA cannot meet the needs of
everyone who would like to come in.  Thus, global economic conditions
also come into the determination of optimized jurisdictions.

[Note from Frank: I certainly agree that immigration may
have to be handled at the national level, for counties and
states may compete for cheap labor and not concern
themselves that the *children* of immigrants, who will tend
to regress to the population means of their homelands, may
become non-producers or otherwise alter the cultural
landscape.]

3.  > Corporations around the world are "delayering"
    > by thinning out ranks of middle managers

     The discussion of de-layering of organisations did not mention one
important distinction between middle management and top management,
namely this:  top management is concerned with making the size and type
of the organisation continuously track its niche in the changing socio-
economic-political environment, while middle management is concerned
with holding the current organisation together and making it work now. 
The requirements for information, skills, and concepts of the two levels
are not identical.  The need for both levels to exist will always be
present; and whether or not they can be fulfilled by fewer persons
having more information is a good question.  If the answer is Yes, then
those persons will have to have a broader and higher profile of
abilities, and that means greater selectivity and higher salaries.  Is
our socio-economic-educational system sufficiently developed to support
that situation and still keep unemployment down to acceptable levels, or
will USA suffer that common symptom of the underdevelopment syndrome in
which the skilled persons are overworked and highly paid while the
under-skilled are under-employed?
     Well, we can of course answer "I hope so", or "Ideally, yes", or
"Eventually", but it might take a few generations - if not centuries -
for the socio-economic-educational system to catch up with the change in
technology.  (As always everywhere)
     A good middle manager is not just a high-speed paper pusher; he is
an expediter, a problem-solver, and a rip-stopper.  Top management must
not have to spend time on such problems as theft of tools, personality
conflicts between machine operators, etc., although they might want to see
the statistics of occurrence of such problems, plus an analysis of
impacts, plans for remediation, etc. - all of which the middle managers
must produce and then follow through to completion.  Of course, the better
the quality and reliability of the Men, Money, Materials, Machines, and
Methods, the less need for Middle Managers, but that need decreases only
asymptotically towards zero.  And even if information were to become
perfect, complete, and free, that would not eliminate all counter-
productive attitudes, concepts, and principles of the customers,
suppliers, stockholders, workers, managers, and community members.


Jim Farmer

-----------------------------------

Doug Schell sent me this e-mail:

From: drschell@nando.net (Doug Schell)

BTW, have you read Sam Sherwood's book "The Little
Republics: The Restoration of the Balance of Power 
at the Local Levels vs. the Federal Levels of Government?" 
Chapter 5 talks about specific action and steps in
making the transition.  Can be gotten at:

Hawkes Publishing
Box 65735
Salt Lake City, UT 84165
(801) 266-5555

I believe it costs about $25.

----------------------------------------

Steve Washam  put me onto an e-
mail list, liberty-and-justice. It contains many news articles (a great
number of which are due to Steve's good efforts) about the actual
revolts going on in several of the western states as well as news on
many other topics posted by those dissatisfied with the current
Federal government. There is a fairly high amount of noise; so be
prepared to go through about 30-40 e-mails a day to get some good
stuff. To subscribe, send the message,

"subscribe liberty-and-justice  ",

to majordomo@pobox.com.

----------------------------

FINAL WORDS: 

1. Write at some length (400 words or 2000 Bytes. I'm trying to do
more than run an opinion poll!

2. Say where you are reading this from.

3. THINK county sovereignty. It's not a solution to all problems,
but we should look at things from this bottom-up perspective and
imagine how the workings of the larger society would emerge.

4. "County sovereignty" is a 'meme' I am inflicting upon the world,
which is why this is being posted to alt.memetics. Hope we get a
good analysis.

5. In the table in my essay, I listed "elitist" in the One Party"
column and "pluralist" in the "Two Parties" column. I read
somewhere many years ago that sociologists look for elites and keep
finding pluralities, while political scientists look for pluralities and
keep finding elites. (Or maybe it was the other way around.) So this
essay has obvious relevance to an e-mail group discussing elitism,
which is why it is being sent to them.


From forman@netcom.com Sun Mar  3 10:07:09 PST 1996
Article: 85806 of alt.politics.correct
Newsgroups: alt.philosophy.objectivism,sci.philosophy.meta,sci.anthropology,talk.politics.theory,talk.politics.misc,soc.couples.intercultural,alt.politics.reform,alt.politics.democrats.d,alt.activism,alt.discrimination,alt.politics.correct,alt.poli,talk.politics.misc
Path: nizkor.almanac.bc.ca!news.island.net!news.bctel.net!imci2!news.internetMCI.com!newsfeed.internetmci.com!howland.reston.ans.net!ix.netcom.com!netcom.com!forman
From: forman@netcom.com (frank forman)
Subject: Biological race in *animals* doesn't exist.
Message-ID: 
Organization: NETCOM On-line Communication Services (408 261-4700 guest)
References: <4gt93u$qsn@utdallas.edu> <4h2cvr$stl@utdallas.edu> <31364fde.25586809@nntp.ix.netcom.com> <4h7gs3$6ge@utdallas.edu>
Distribution: inet
Date: Sat, 2 Mar 1996 21:03:21 GMT
Lines: 14
Sender: forman@netcom15.netcom.com
Xref: nizkor.almanac.bc.ca alt.philosophy.objectivism:62101 sci.philosophy.meta:16046 sci.anthropology:742 talk.politics.theory:58189 talk.politics.misc:339128 soc.couples.intercultural:15372 alt.politics.reform:54731 alt.politics.democrats.d:58684 alt.activism:32973 alt.discrimination:43991 alt.politics.correct:85806

I changed the title of the subject line from "Biological race in *humans* 
doesn't exist." Perhaps it should have been better titled "Biological 
race in humans has not been shown to exist to my satisfaction." Those 
dissatisfied either say that racial typologigists  disagree on the number 
of races (but "splitters" will always come up with more races than the 
"lumpers"). Or else the proper microbiolgical research has not been 
carried out (which presumes that microbiology is the only way to make 
taxonomies).

I ask: is there a single case of races having been shown to exist in any 
animal, with the same standards of evidence you demand for races to be 
shown to exist in humans?

Frank


From forman@netcom.com Mon Mar  4 00:23:08 PST 1996
Article: 33054 of alt.activism
Newsgroups: alt.philosophy.objectivism,sci.philosophy.meta,sci.anthropology,talk.politics.theory,soc.culture.intercultural,alt.politics.reform,alt.politics.democrats.d,alt.activism,alt.discrimination,alt.politics.correct,alt.politics.usa.constitution,comp.ai.philosophy
Path: nizkor.almanac.bc.ca!news.island.net!news.bctel.net!news.cyberstore.ca!van-bc!unixg.ubc.ca!nntp.cs.ubc.ca!newsxfer.itd.umich.edu!newsxfer2.itd.umich.edu!agate!howland.reston.ans.net!ix.netcom.com!netcom.com!forman
From: forman@netcom.com (frank forman)
Subject: Re: Evidence FOR Racial Equality??
Message-ID: 
Organization: NETCOM On-line Communication Services (408 261-4700 guest)
References: <31181a31.9028916@nntp.ix.netcom.com> <4h43b1$6mc@neptunus.pi.net> <4h4fsu$2fcl@unixfe.rl.ac.uk> <4hckn0$33k@neptunus.pi.net>
Distribution: inet
Date: Sun, 3 Mar 1996 18:12:26 GMT
Lines: 25
Sender: forman@netcom15.netcom.com
Xref: nizkor.almanac.bc.ca alt.philosophy.objectivism:62125 sci.philosophy.meta:16056 sci.anthropology:749 talk.politics.theory:58226 alt.politics.reform:54784 alt.politics.democrats.d:58741 alt.activism:33054 alt.discrimination:44015 alt.politics.correct:85866 alt.politics.usa.constitution:51465 comp.ai.philosophy:24385

In article <4hckn0$33k@neptunus.pi.net>, JanHolland  wrote:
>"M.ike Warren"  wrote:
>
>>ALL humans are almost genetically identical..except for a few
>>physical features.
>>take 100 new born black babies...100 new born white babies...raise
>>them all in the same way with the same teaching methods and I
>>tell you that IQ levels will be randomly distributed amongst ALL
>>the subjects. 
>>(this has been shown to be true in research done at UCL few years back
>>.they looked at adopted babies black and white being adopted by the
>>same family....they did NOT find less IQ in the black kids than in
>>the White kids.)
>
>I suppose so too, but I want Matt Nuenke to specify for the case the
>equality is _not_ so.

I'd be interested in what Matt has to say, too, but not on THIS thread 
(which I am responsible for starting). The title is "Evidence FOR Racial 
Equality??", not "Evidence FOR Racial Inequality??"  I am not seeking to 
define race or to define equality at this point. I just want to get 
whatever *positive* evidence there is out on the table so we can all take 
a look at it.

Frank


From forman@netcom.com Mon Mar  4 09:51:57 PST 1996
Article: 33054 of alt.activism
Newsgroups: alt.philosophy.objectivism,sci.philosophy.meta,sci.anthropology,talk.politics.theory,soc.culture.intercultural,alt.politics.reform,alt.politics.democrats.d,alt.activism,alt.discrimination,alt.politics.correct,alt.politics.usa.constitution,comp.ai.philosophy
Path: nizkor.almanac.bc.ca!news.island.net!news.bctel.net!news.cyberstore.ca!van-bc!unixg.ubc.ca!nntp.cs.ubc.ca!newsxfer.itd.umich.edu!newsxfer2.itd.umich.edu!agate!howland.reston.ans.net!ix.netcom.com!netcom.com!forman
From: forman@netcom.com (frank forman)
Subject: Re: Evidence FOR Racial Equality??
Message-ID: 
Organization: NETCOM On-line Communication Services (408 261-4700 guest)
References: <31181a31.9028916@nntp.ix.netcom.com> <4h43b1$6mc@neptunus.pi.net> <4h4fsu$2fcl@unixfe.rl.ac.uk> <4hckn0$33k@neptunus.pi.net>
Distribution: inet
Date: Sun, 3 Mar 1996 18:12:26 GMT
Lines: 25
Sender: forman@netcom15.netcom.com
Xref: nizkor.almanac.bc.ca alt.philosophy.objectivism:62125 sci.philosophy.meta:16056 sci.anthropology:749 talk.politics.theory:58226 alt.politics.reform:54784 alt.politics.democrats.d:58741 alt.activism:33054 alt.discrimination:44015 alt.politics.correct:85866 alt.politics.usa.constitution:51465 comp.ai.philosophy:24385

In article <4hckn0$33k@neptunus.pi.net>, JanHolland  wrote:
>"M.ike Warren"  wrote:
>
>>ALL humans are almost genetically identical..except for a few
>>physical features.
>>take 100 new born black babies...100 new born white babies...raise
>>them all in the same way with the same teaching methods and I
>>tell you that IQ levels will be randomly distributed amongst ALL
>>the subjects. 
>>(this has been shown to be true in research done at UCL few years back
>>.they looked at adopted babies black and white being adopted by the
>>same family....they did NOT find less IQ in the black kids than in
>>the White kids.)
>
>I suppose so too, but I want Matt Nuenke to specify for the case the
>equality is _not_ so.

I'd be interested in what Matt has to say, too, but not on THIS thread 
(which I am responsible for starting). The title is "Evidence FOR Racial 
Equality??", not "Evidence FOR Racial Inequality??"  I am not seeking to 
define race or to define equality at this point. I just want to get 
whatever *positive* evidence there is out on the table so we can all take 
a look at it.

Frank


From forman@netcom.com Tue Mar  5 00:00:51 PST 1996
Article: 33416 of alt.activism
Newsgroups: alt.philosophy.objectivism,sci.philosophy.meta,sci.anthropology,talk.politics.theory,soc.culture.intercultural,alt.politics.reform,alt.politics.democrats.d,alt.activism,alt.discrimination,alt.politics.correct,alt.politics.usa.constitution,comp.ai.philosophy
Path: nizkor.almanac.bc.ca!news.island.net!news.bctel.net!imci2!news.internetMCI.com!newsfeed.internetmci.com!howland.reston.ans.net!ix.netcom.com!netcom.com!forman
From: forman@netcom.com (frank forman)
Subject: Re: Evidence FOR Racial Equality??
Message-ID: 
Organization: NETCOM On-line Communication Services (408 261-4700 guest)
References: <31181a31.9028916@nntp.ix.netcom.com> <4hckn0$33k@neptunus.pi.net>  <4heam2$l3f@neptunus.pi.net>
Distribution: inet
Date: Mon, 4 Mar 1996 23:47:49 GMT
Lines: 30
Sender: forman@netcom3.netcom.com
Xref: nizkor.almanac.bc.ca alt.philosophy.objectivism:62272 sci.philosophy.meta:16085 sci.anthropology:772 talk.politics.theory:58395 alt.politics.reform:55015 alt.politics.democrats.d:59145 alt.activism:33416 alt.discrimination:44104 alt.politics.correct:86178 alt.politics.usa.constitution:51608 comp.ai.philosophy:24391

In article <4heam2$l3f@neptunus.pi.net>, JanHolland  wrote:
>forman@netcom.com (frank forman) wrote:
>
>>In article <4hckn0$33k@neptunus.pi.net>, JanHolland  wrote:
>>>"M.ike Warren"  wrote:
>
>>>I suppose so too, but I want Matt Nuenke to specify for the case the
>>>equality is _not_ so.
>
>>I'd be interested in what Matt has to say, too, but not on THIS thread 
>>(which I am responsible for starting). The title is "Evidence FOR Racial 
>>Equality??", not "Evidence FOR Racial Inequality??"  I am not seeking to 
>>define race or to define equality at this point. I just want to get 
>>whatever *positive* evidence there is out on the table so we can all take 
>>a look at it.
>
>OK, I buy.
>I'll start a new thread "If "races" are unequal, so what ?

Please do! One effect would be to bring Affirmative Action programs and 
Civil Rights laws into question (as least as regards their extent) on the 
part of those who think that such things are part of the legitimate 
functins of government in the first place. A second effect would be to 
think more critically on the impact of immigration policy on our nation. 
And a third is on whether birth control should be dispensed with welfare 
checks, and disproportionately depending on race.

But start up a new thread before anyone fires back a response.

Frank


From forman@netcom.com Tue Mar  5 16:19:30 PST 1996
Article: 86178 of alt.politics.correct
Newsgroups: alt.philosophy.objectivism,sci.philosophy.meta,sci.anthropology,talk.politics.theory,soc.culture.intercultural,alt.politics.reform,alt.politics.democrats.d,alt.activism,alt.discrimination,alt.politics.correct,alt.politics.usa.constitution,comp.ai.philosophy
Path: nizkor.almanac.bc.ca!news.island.net!news.bctel.net!imci2!news.internetMCI.com!newsfeed.internetmci.com!howland.reston.ans.net!ix.netcom.com!netcom.com!forman
From: forman@netcom.com (frank forman)
Subject: Re: Evidence FOR Racial Equality??
Message-ID: 
Organization: NETCOM On-line Communication Services (408 261-4700 guest)
References: <31181a31.9028916@nntp.ix.netcom.com> <4hckn0$33k@neptunus.pi.net>  <4heam2$l3f@neptunus.pi.net>
Distribution: inet
Date: Mon, 4 Mar 1996 23:47:49 GMT
Lines: 30
Sender: forman@netcom3.netcom.com
Xref: nizkor.almanac.bc.ca alt.philosophy.objectivism:62272 sci.philosophy.meta:16085 sci.anthropology:772 talk.politics.theory:58395 alt.politics.reform:55015 alt.politics.democrats.d:59145 alt.activism:33416 alt.discrimination:44104 alt.politics.correct:86178 alt.politics.usa.constitution:51608 comp.ai.philosophy:24391

In article <4heam2$l3f@neptunus.pi.net>, JanHolland  wrote:
>forman@netcom.com (frank forman) wrote:
>
>>In article <4hckn0$33k@neptunus.pi.net>, JanHolland  wrote:
>>>"M.ike Warren"  wrote:
>
>>>I suppose so too, but I want Matt Nuenke to specify for the case the
>>>equality is _not_ so.
>
>>I'd be interested in what Matt has to say, too, but not on THIS thread 
>>(which I am responsible for starting). The title is "Evidence FOR Racial 
>>Equality??", not "Evidence FOR Racial Inequality??"  I am not seeking to 
>>define race or to define equality at this point. I just want to get 
>>whatever *positive* evidence there is out on the table so we can all take 
>>a look at it.
>
>OK, I buy.
>I'll start a new thread "If "races" are unequal, so what ?

Please do! One effect would be to bring Affirmative Action programs and 
Civil Rights laws into question (as least as regards their extent) on the 
part of those who think that such things are part of the legitimate 
functins of government in the first place. A second effect would be to 
think more critically on the impact of immigration policy on our nation. 
And a third is on whether birth control should be dispensed with welfare 
checks, and disproportionately depending on race.

But start up a new thread before anyone fires back a response.

Frank


From forman@netcom.com Wed Mar  6 01:14:37 PST 1996
Article: 86346 of alt.politics.correct
Newsgroups: alt.philosophy.objectivism,alt.politics.correct,alt.politics.usa.republican,alt.politics.usa.constitution,alt.politics.libertarian,alt.politics.elections,ny.general,alt.parenting.solutions,alt.censorship,alt.government.abuse,alt.cooking-chat,alt.politics.economics,alt.fan.newt-gingrich
Path: nizkor.almanac.bc.ca!news.island.net!news.bctel.net!imci2!news.internetMCI.com!newsfeed.internetmci.com!swrinde!howland.reston.ans.net!ix.netcom.com!netcom.com!forman
From: forman@netcom.com (frank forman)
Subject: The Voting Paradox
Message-ID: 
Organization: NETCOM On-line Communication Services (408 261-4700 guest) Keywords: 
References: <4h9tct$78n@newstand.syr.edu> <4hdln7$baj@niflheim.rutgers.edu> <4hfeq1$di5@nntp4.u.washington.edu> <4hfjib$1bfk@msunews.cl.msu.edu>
Date: Tue, 5 Mar 1996 01:58:12 GMT
Lines: 42
Sender: forman@netcom3.netcom.com
Xref: nizkor.almanac.bc.ca alt.philosophy.objectivism:62343 alt.politics.correct:86346 alt.politics.usa.republican:162365 alt.politics.usa.constitution:51682 alt.politics.libertarian:145377 alt.politics.elections:53174 alt.parenting.solutions:3068 alt.censorship:72303 alt.politics.economics:41828

In article <4hfjib$1bfk@msunews.cl.msu.edu>,
John Stone  <20676jrs@msu.edu> wrote:
>graham@maxwell.ee.washington.edu (Stephen Graham) wrote:
>>In article <4hdln7$baj@niflheim.rutgers.edu>,
>>Michael Huemer  wrote:
>>>Voting is a waste of time, and everybody knows it.  Don't waste your
>>>time.  Your vote will have no effect on the outcome of the election.
>>>When was the last time an election turned on one vote?
>>
>>In Washington, it was February 5, 1996. A school levy in one of the
>>suburban Seattle school districts failed by one vote. Turned out the
>>district superintendent didn't vote and is now kicking himself.
>>--
>>Stephen Graham
>>graham@ee.washington.edu
>>graham@cs.washington.edu	 uw-beaver!june!graham
>                                                               
>I remember when I was in high school I did some research on
>this subject.  I found out about a state representative
>contest in North Dakota that was decided by just one vote.
>So your votes are important.  John S.

Now take the value to the voter of having Tweeedledum vs. Tweedledee for 
his state representative,

Multiply by the probablity that the voter collected enough information to 
know that Tweedledum was in fact more to his interest than Tweedledee

Multiply by the probability that a given election will in fact be decided 
by one vote.

And then substract to the cost of voting, including the change of 
being killed in an accident en route to the eolection booth.

If the number is less then zero, it is not rational to vote.

Welcome to what Public Choice scholars call the Voting Paradox!

[I have no idea why alt.cooking-chat is among the newsgroups here. Maybe 
they are looking for a reason to stay home cooking on electino day!]

Frank


From forman@netcom.com Thu Mar  7 13:31:11 PST 1996
Article: 75549 of soc.culture.usa
Newsgroups: alt.politics.nationalism.white,soc.culture.african.american,alt.discrimination,soc.culture.usa,alt.politics.correct,alt.politics.radical-left,alt.philosophy.objectivism
Path: nizkor.almanac.bc.ca!news.island.net!news.bctel.net!imci2!newsfeed.internetmci.com!howland.reston.ans.net!ix.netcom.com!netcom.com!forman
From: forman@netcom.com (frank forman)
Subject: Re: Nairobi's decline: Is it Racial?
Message-ID: 
Followup-To: alt.politics.nationalism.white,soc.culture.african.american,alt.discrimination,soc.culture.usa,alt.politics.correct,alt.politics.radical-left,alt.philosophy.objectivism
Organization: NETCOM On-line Communication Services (408 261-4700 guest)
X-Newsreader: TIN [version 1.2 PL1]
References:  <4bqes0$vt@pipe9.nyc.pipeline.com>   
Date: Thu, 28 Dec 1995 23:34:14 GMT
Lines: 33
Sender: forman@netcom3.netcom.com
Xref: nizkor.almanac.bc.ca alt.politics.nationalism.white:9343 soc.culture.african.american:109593 alt.discrimination:40331 soc.culture.usa:75549 alt.politics.correct:68242 alt.politics.radical-left:67236 alt.philosophy.objectivism:56819

orion38 (Orion38@cris.com) wrote:

: The following article raises a question about the capability of black
: African states to maintain modern civilization. Unlike Japan and Far
: Eastern countries which were also colonized by the West, African countries
: have failed to adequately maintain the infrastructure necessary for modern
: Western society. The question that we must not duck is, Is it racial? 
: Because if it is purely cultural, then why have cultures as diverse as
: Singapore, Japan, and Hong Kong been able to prosper, while those as diverse
: as Cairo, Mogadishu, Lagos, and Port Au Prince have not?

The answer is that we MUST duck the question. Ayn Rand herself has said, 
"racism is the most primitive form of collectivism." Besides, you will be 
getting many completely satisfactory explanations from many readers that 
it is *government*, not race, that is responsible for the problems in 
African countries.

You must NOT ask whether the racial characterists of Africans has 
anything to do with the kinds of government they have. Ayn Rand AND Dr. 
Pea Cough have both said that it is the choices men make that determine 
the kind of government they have. Man has free will. It is whether he 
chooses to focus that determines what sort of metaphysics, epistemology, 
ethics, and political system he has.

You must NOT ask whether racial characteristics mean that it is easier 
for some races to focus on objective reality than others, because Ayn 
Rand never endorsed the theory of evolution, so the question does not 
make any sense in ojbective reality, which is not about science.

Man, if you do a word count in the writings of Ayn Rand, is a "rational 
being" ten times for every time she uses "rational animal."

Frank



Home ·  Site Map ·  What's New? ·  Search Nizkor

© The Nizkor Project, 1991-2012

This site is intended for educational purposes to teach about the Holocaust and to combat hatred. Any statements or excerpts found on this site are for educational purposes only.

As part of these educational purposes, Nizkor may include on this website materials, such as excerpts from the writings of racists and antisemites. Far from approving these writings, Nizkor condemns them and provides them so that its readers can learn the nature and extent of hate and antisemitic discourse. Nizkor urges the readers of these pages to condemn racist and hate speech in all of its forms and manifestations.