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Commentaryism - Is Private or Social Property Better for Human Flourishing?

A two-comment thread from, yet again, a Youtube video completely resolved by AnCap217. You'll be happy to know I am not involved, so no text from me follows beyond the wavy line!

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magister343

You actually increase conflict over scarce resources by granting ownership to whoever can pluck a scarce resource out of the state of nature first. This property norm encourages a speculative race to grab lots of resources early, before they are needed or even useful to the first claimant. It rewards those who shrink the commons by claiming large quantities of resources, for the purpose of later demanding payment (by threat of violence) from those who would have otherwise been able to claim the resources from the state of nature free and clear.

I still find Georgist property norms the best alternative. This recognizes an absolute right to the fruits of human labor (at least those which are rivalrous; there is debates among Geoists about IP, with Henry George himself having changed him mind a couple times before deciding to reject patents and accept a limited form of copyright), and accepts the importance of secure possession of land and other natural resources. The right of possession of the gifts of nature is not of the same order as the right to property in the fruits of labor, however. It can unavoidably violate the law of equal liberty. Thus it comes with a duty to pay compensation to those denied access to the natural resource, in a quantity proportional to the harm that exclusive possession does them.

In many cases, particularly in sparsely populated areas where the resource in question is bountiful, then the payments may be so small that it would make much more sense to ignore them than to waste any resources trying to collect or distribute the negligible funds. In thriving dense urban environments, however, the value of the physical space a building occupies is often far higher than the value of all the improvements on the lot. Here there is definitely harm in keeping a vacant lot where other individuals would like to live or work, and a justification for some method to redistribute economic land rent. A Land Value Tax paired with a Citizens' Dividend is one such method, although there are certainly alternatives that could be devised in non-statist societies.

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AnCap217

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“You actually increase conflict over scarce resources by granting ownership to whoever can pluck a scarce resource out of the state of nature first.”

It is not a “granting” of ownership but a recognition of ownership claims and if not the first to make such claim then the only other alternatives would be no claim at all, in which case you have no say in the issue as a position which wishes to prevent such first claims would require the application of a claim thereby negating the position.
As for increasing conflict it is much more apparent that when claims are not recognized/respected that conflict increases when compared to recognition/respect of claims.

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“This property norm encourages a speculative race to grab lots of resources early, before they are needed or even useful to the first claimant.”

Demand is infinite and resources scarce and to prevent individuals from acquiring that which is unclaimed is both coercive and a contradiction as the inhibitor would be making a claim them self.
As for your determinations to needs and usefulness of resources, it is illegitimate to be  made by anyone but the claimant. How one uses their claim of ownership cannot directly violate those claims of others nor be violated by others, hence, first to claim having legitimacy.

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“It rewards those who shrink the commons by claiming large quantities of resources”

When you use the phrase “shrink the commons” you are making a prior claim to such commons and presumably a claim made by an abstraction known as “the collective.” It is a logical fallacy to 1) ascribe possessive claims (an abstraction) to an abstraction (a collective) and 2) to treat an abstraction as something existing in reality (reification). Furthermore, if your abstraction known as "the collective" can make a claim which the very individuals (actually existing in reality) composing this "collective" cannot, then there is a lack of logic congruency and a non-sequitur presented to support an argument.
When you state that some obtain “rewards” you are making a preference towards your desires of others' claims and this has nothing to do with ethics…unless your ethics are determined by a lack of beneficial outcomes in which you would cease to exist as your very survival requires that your actions yield “rewards”.
Furthermore, because of scarcity, ANY use of resources will, even if temporarily, "shrink" the supply.

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You then continue with the position that claims of resources would be used “for the purpose of later demanding payment (by threat of violence) from those who would have otherwise been able to claim the resources from the state of nature free and clear.”

This is incorrect. No payment is “demanded” but rather those seeking such resources which they have not claimed themselves create “demand” with satisfaction potentially coming in the form of exchange (voluntary), perhaps what you would call “payment.” A claim to ownership is NOT a threat of violence. A woman does not commit a “threat of violence” by resisting or avoiding rape, and in the same manner one who has made a legitimate claim of ownership does not commit a “threat of violence” by acting on such claims. Once again your non-sequitur position seems to make you believe that an abstraction (collective) has made a previous claim (abstraction) to the resource and therefore a threat of violence has occurred. This is not the case...at least from a logically consistent approach.

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"Georgist property norms...recognizes an absolute right to the fruits of human labor...and accepts the importance of secure possession of land and other natural resources. The right of possession of the gifts of nature is not of the same order as the right to property in the fruits of labor"

First, "rights" do not exist as they too are abstractions. Second, they are of the most arbitrarily applied abstractions deluded individuals seem to "recognize". Yes, claims of ownership are abstractions as well, but as t3hsauce stated, they are objective while the concept of "rights" are entirely subjective and not based in anything materialistic or in reality. It is a preference to a privilege or claim and need not be used in an argument as one could as easily claim a "right" to the planet as they could to the "right" of speech or "rights" of animals.

As for the differentiation between "gifts of nature" and "property in the fruits of labor" you make no objective argument. You just state that to not do so would "violate the law of equal liberty" (whatever that means). "Equal" is entirely subjective and unattainable in any materialistic form in reality. It becomes even more subjective when you apply it to "liberty" which, like "rights," can be viewed in such a distorted manner. If by "liberty" one means free from the violation of one's free will, then it would be the absence of your attempted differentiations as you have attempted to impose your will upon another's ability to establish and respect claims by arbitrary applications which would presuppose previous and universal claims by an abstraction...once again not logical.

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"Thus it comes with a duty to pay compensation to those denied access to the natural resource, in a quantity proportional to the harm that exclusive possession does them."

No individual, and especially an abstraction known as "the collective," can bind another to a duty they do not accept. If it is your position, once again, that an abstraction has been denied access, and must be compensated, then you have made an assertion (claim) that a fiction can make a claim which a non-fictitious entity composing that fiction cannot, and that this fiction has a default/universal claim prior to any other. Once again, this is a logical fallacy consisting of reification and a non-sequitur.

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"there is definitely harm in keeping a vacant lot where other individuals would like to live or work"

No. Ones ability to make a first claim is not an initiation of force, coercion or fraud ("harm") unless that claim was previously held by another actual existing entity (not an abstraction). My eating an apple which I legitimately acquired "harms" no one. You are presupposing a claim prior to the first. Illogical.

You then state that there is a "justification for some method to redistribute economic land rent."

How is preventing, by force, the accumulation of land, resources, etc. at all justifiable unless you have made and proven a previous claim? Can you use facts to support such a claim absent your illogical position of an abstraction making universal claims? If you advocate that some men point guns at other men because of a "harm" there better be facts and evidence supporting your claim/position.

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