Saturday, March 7, 2009

Chavez Means Business; Pragmatist Businessmen Mean Appeasement

Here were the bullet points at the top of an article related to Chavez' recent nationalization of a Cargill plant in Venezuela:

* Cargill takeover renews Chavez nationalization drive
* Tightening control over food comes after some shortages
* Chavez emboldened after referendum victory last month
* Cargill "respectful," seeks talks to resolve situation

In essence, these bullet points provide a concise summary of everything that is wrong with the world today.

The nationalization of Cargill represents a further front in the global drive towards socialism and fascism.

The second bullet point demonstrates the practical economic effects of socialism and shows how it leads inexorably to tyranny. Of course, nationalization is outright theft and requires violence or the threat of violence. The effect of price controls is effectively theft since it takes away the right to dispose of property as the owner sees fit. If the state can tell you at what price to sell your property - it is not your property by definition. Since price controls logically must lead to shortages, people will attempt to violate the governments controls by selling on a black market. The government must then either relax the controls or be prepared to enforce the laws by ever increasing forms of violence. In this way, price controls must lead to tyranny. In every period of world history from Ancient Rome to the French Revolution to Soviet Russia to Chavez' Venezuela you can observe this effect [1].

The third bullet point represents the concept of "democracy" versus the principle of individual rights. Democracy represents "unlimited majority rule" and amounts to mobocracy. It is the idea that anything can be done to anybody as long as you have 51% of the vote. Democracy means rule by consensus rather than rule by law. The principle of individual rights as embodied in the Declaration of Independence means that each person has unalienable rights, i.e., they possess certain freedoms by virtue of their nature as human beings that are not to be violated under any circumstances. The right to think or speak freely is not something that can be taken away by majority vote. The right to own property is a precondition of human survival since if you can not dispose of your own property you are a slave by definition. America began as a constitutional republic and we have devolved into a democracy in which there are no rights which can not be violated by majority rule. This rule by consensus versus rule of law is a further consequence of modern philosophy, i.e., subjectivism and pragmatism.

The fourth bullet point represents the "sanction of the victim". In Atlas Shrugged, Ayn Rand showed that evil can exist only so long as the victims allow it. Cargill should either hire a private army to fight the Venezuelan government (since the United States will not fight for American property owners) or blow up its factory, i.e., "Go Galt" on it (as a recent refrain goes). Instead they engage in cowardly, appeasement.

"I warn you this revolution means business," said Chavez, whose government has struggled with lower oil income and minor food shortages this year.

The looters do mean business. It is time that the producers mean it to.


Harold said...

Given current events and my field, I've toyed with the idea of blowing up a refinery or scavenging what I could then destroying the rest if something like this happened. It would be interesting to see what would happen if Cargill did hire a private army to defend its food plants. According to the article, Venezuela is the 3rd largest buyer of US rice.

Doug Reich said...

It's amazing how a company like Cargill would just lay down rather than taking a hard line. It sounds like Chavez pays them off for the factory and they walk away so maybe they are just trying to make sure they get something for it. If I were Cargill, I would take the money from Chavez and then blow it up.