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Samizdata quote of the day

“Did you know that your dog owns your house, or rather some portion of it? If this is not immediately obvious to you, you will find it helpful to consider some aspects of the ethics and economics of redistribution.”

Anthony de Jasay, the political philosopher who died not long ago, and one of those intellectuals that many people will not have heard of. A marvellous writer. The essay from which these words come is a gem.

21 comments to Samizdata quote of the day

  • llamas

    He’s never met our dogs 😀

    llater,

    llamas

  • Runcie Balspune

    Most modern theories of how society ought to work rest on some idea of agreement.

    This is the money quote.

    I’ve always stated the problem with socialism is it requires everyone to be a socialist, thus authoritarianism is intertwined with socialism as a way of implementation.

  • Paul Marks

    He was indeed a great man.

  • bobby b

    “Did you know that your dog owns your house, or rather some portion of it?”

    Always get your dog to sign lien waivers when you feed him.

  • Snorri Godhi

    Anthony de Jasay was mentioned a few years ago in a comment by Rocco, if i am not mistaken, as the originator of the idea that we do not have to provide any justification for wanting freedom: the burden of proof is on those who want to take it away. Makes sense to me!

    Didn’t know that he died. RIP.
    I see that he now has a (well-deserved) page on Wikipedia. He didn’t, last time i checked.

  • Julie near Chicago

    Second llamas. 😥 😆

    .

    Lucy would greet the burglars by jumping up on them happily and enthusiastically, getting them beer and ham sandwiches, and when they were through eating she would show them to the valuables.

    –Better they should have quit after the buffet…the valuables run heavily to plastic covered with that imitation gold-plate stuff. (But some are rather attractive.)

    . . .

    I too am sorry to hear that Mr. de Jasay has passed away. I see he was 93 — I thought he was much, much younger. I see from the link that Econlib has the 31-page preface to his book The State (1985).

    https://www.econlib.org/library/LFBooks/Jasay/jsyStt.html

    Searching Econlib, links to his stuff on Econlib are at

    https://search.econlib.org/search/#UKxE02Y1chMjdDP3_ZqRLlaJx4g=

  • neonsnake

    Lucy would greet the burglars by jumping up on them happily and enthusiastically, getting them beer and ham sandwiches, and when they were through eating she would show them to the valuables.

    ROFL

    Our Scout (massive Border Collie who thinks she’s a lapdog) would do exactly the same.

    Matilda (a small dog that we think is a cross between a dachshund and a vampire bat – our rescue pup from the streets of Buenos Aires) would growl, nip and bite, until she went and hid behind Scout or me when “bark turns to bite.”

  • Julie near Chicago

    Heh! 😉

  • Ed Turnbull

    @neonsnake

    You have a rescue pup from the streets of Buenos Aires? Sir, I doff my titfer to you (at least I would if I wore one) and propose you for immediate canonisation.

    I’ve had a few rescue dogs (and cats) in my time, and the joy they bring is beyond any price. I currently have a rescue moggy (the canine shaped hole in my life will be filled as soon as retirement arrives), and while the vet bills have been steep of late I’ve paid every penny with a glad heart. I know all too well there’s a further cost I must bear when he leaves us, one measured in grief rather than coin. But that, too, I will accept with no regret.

    Damn it! I must have something in my eye, else why would it be leaking? Time for a cuppa and a bacon butty to fortify me before I sling my leg over my Harley and venture out into this lovely crisp autumn day. The best to you, and to all who inhabit these hallowed halls.

  • RRS

    Some things for Julie –

    My house, I say. But hark to the sunny doves

    That make my roof the arena of their loves,

    That gyre about the gable all day long

    And fill the chimneys with their murmurous song:

    Our house, they say; and mine, the cat declares

    And spreads his golden fleece upon the chairs;

    And mine the dog, and rises stiff with wrath

    If any alien foot profane the path.

    So, too, the buck that trimmed my terraces,

    Our whilom gardener, called the garden his;

    Who now, deposed, surveys my plain abode

    And his late kingdom, only from the road.

    R L Stevenson

    More to come.

  • RRS

    More for Julie –

    de Jasay’s works in print available at Liberty Fund:

    https://www.libertyfund.org/people?person=jasay-anthony-de

    On its Online Library of Liberty [a real treasury to explore] Liberty Fund makes available de Jasay works -free & complete.

    https://oll.libertyfund.org/people/anthony-de-jasay.

    As to his work “The State,” he does explain why he deals with subject as a sort of organic entity (which he recognizes it is not).

    on that concept currently:

    ” Their theory of government is not how the thing works. Government does not rationally make all the proper adjustments that will make something work. Government is not a conscious entity that has an incentive to do any such thing, but a conglomeration of individuals with various interests in varying offices responding to the demands of various individuals. And the tug of war between all those varying interests pulls pieces off of policies here, slices there, and so on. And that additional policy on which your primary policy’s success (political or technical) is predicated has its own wholly separate legislative path to tread.”

    James Hanley (Adrian College)
    Responding to Washington Post editorial of 10.20.2019

    That’s All, except to add that I have collected de Jasay’s works and am actually a few years older (but not nearly so wise or articulate than he)

  • Julie near Chicago

    RRS,

    Thanks very much for Mr. Stevenson’s thoughts on what might be entitled, “To whom belongeth this abode which I call ‘mine’?” I have not seen it before, and now include with remarks by Mr. Yeats, Mr. Keats, and various other notable wordworkers *g*.

    (For some reason I’m allergic to “wordsmiths.” I really don’t know why. Perhaps because it became a Fashionable Word? Only the Great Frog knows for sure.) Ahem, sorry. :>)

    Thanks also for the note on Econlib as a source for Mr. de Jasay.

    .

    BUT.

    Darn you, RRS. You reminded me that my need to be Right (i.e. Correct) at all times must override almost all other concerns, such as the need to APPEAR to be right.

    As in this case. I had to check on Econlib vs. LibertyFund, and it turns out that 😥 I made a Grievious[sic] Error 😥 in some recent comment. The Gentleman from Indiana was Pierre F. Goodrich, founder of LibertyFund, and not Leonard Read, who, contrary to my statement, was a co-founder of FEE.

    My apologies to all, and especially to those who might be interested in what some people (but not I) might consider a piece of trivia in the galumphingly high seas of historiography.

  • Julie near Chicago

    Hmph. Correction:

    “…and now include it in my Poetry library, along with remarks by ….”

    And again, RSS, thanks. Like it very much. The real skinny on who owns what! :>)))

    .

    Forgot to say, Thank you also for the quote from Mr. Hanley. Good point.

    ETA: Runcie, good point also.

  • Julie near Chicago

    The trouble with Samizdata is, it uses up more time than I have, Investigating interesting tidbits that it presents. 👿

    :>)))

  • The trouble with Samizdata is, it uses up more time than I have, (Julie near Chicago, October 27, 2019 at 4:01 am)

    You are not alone. I woke up in the middle of last night realising that I’d miswritten the name of the author of the article I was discussing in my latest Great Realignment post. It only took 5 minutes to start computer, fix error and go back to sleep again – but I really needed that time for sleeping! 🙂

  • Julie near Chicago

    😥 I feel your pain. 😥 😥 😥

    ;>)

  • neonsnake

    You have a rescue pup from the streets of Buenos Aires? Sir, I doff my titfer to you (at least I would if I wore one) and propose you for immediate canonisation

    Thank you Ed! That’s very kind!

    Mati, we literally found on the streets. My girlfriend had decided she wanted a pup, and a few days later found a pup in the streets. We took it as a sign, and adopted her.

    Scout is also a rescue, but from a centre (also in Argentina) that my girlfriend’s youngest sister adopted her from.

    Over time, we’ve moved the sisters first, and then the dogs, to the UK (they have dual Argentina and Italian passports, so EU rules). The younger sister first, then my girl. We meant to move my girl and the dogs at the same time, but we misjudged the bribery needed to move the dogs.

    We moved them all eventually to the UK, at some cost.

    So, currently, we have my girls, and their dogs, here. Im hoping that doesn’t change.

    If it does, I’m coming out swinging.

    😉

  • Julie near Chicago

    May all five of you live long and prosper, neon. As the song says, “There is Nothing Like a Dog” — er, is that right?

    Never mind what Mr. Hammerstein said. I say it, so there!

  • llamas

    Long-term inmates may recall our fondness for Dobermann Pinschers.

    As the genetics of pet Dobermanns in the US have now been completely FU’ed, we have transferred our affections to retired racing greyhounds, and two of them now lounge around the llamaserie, doing the important work of holding the couches down and preventing the washing machine from seizing up due to underuse.

    Regardless of breed, I just wanted to re-iterate my thinking about the concept of ‘get a dog to protect your home’.

    https://www.samizdata.net/2012/09/dont-come-cryin-1/

    llater,

    llamas

  • neonsnake

    the concept of ‘get a dog to protect your home’.

    Goddamn right, llamas. Our dogs are not our protections, I am theirs – bar the early warning system, but gods willing, I’ll never need to put that into practice. And in a country where getting a firearm is tricky, I’m down to rushing them and hoping for the best.

    doing the important work of holding the couches down and preventing the washing machine from seizing up due to underuse.

    Under-appreciated work. Do they also save you the need to clean the kitchen floor when something spills over the worktop?

    On other news, the Pre-Settled status came through today. Which, as I think you can imagine, is an absolutely enormous weight off my mind.

  • Tedd

    De Jasay’s argment in this piece is good but it doesn’t address the problem of real property that Henry George raised: That much of the market value of real property wasn’t created by the purported owner of that property. I’m a big fan of the “product of one’s labour” theory of property, and it does apply to some extent to real property. The dollar value I paid for my house was all paid with the product of my labour. Likewise for any improvements I’ve made. But my house is now worth more than double what I paid for it, even in inflation-adjusted units, and I didn’t earn a penny of that additional amount through my labour. So it doesn’t work to use the “product of one’s labour” argument to support my ownership of that portion of the value of my house.

    I’m not necessarily supporting the Georgist position, and certainly not the Georgist’s proposed solutions, only pointing out that this particular argument for property doesn’t work well when applied to real property.

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