'patrish as fuck'
On animal rights
Things that have rights have rights because they can protect them. When someone is willing to defend them they can have their rights defended. So if they’re able to patronise a DRO then we’ll say that they are protected. Well, why can’t a human be enslaved until such time as they’re able to beg, steal or borrow enough money to pay for a DRO? Because if someone is willing to fight to free them, then that new protector is seen as a means by which the slave is protecting himself from enslavement. In the same way, I’m starting to think that people should be able to liberate animals from slavery and have it be seen in a similar light. On the other hand, how can such a ‘liberation’ be distinguished from theft of legitimately-owned property? Because society, having its will represented through the polycentric legal system, agrees with it enough not to pay for DROs that prosecute the liberators of certain animals. So if we collectively believe that people shouldn’t be enslaved, we won’t pay for DROs that prosecute the liberators of human slaves, and if we believe that great apes shouldn’t be enslaved we’ll do the same, but if we believe that you can’t really “enslave” a cow because having a cow to milk benefits the rest of us through trade and because cows don’t understand the concepts of freedom and servitude enough to be in a state of “enslavement” or “liberation”, then cow “liberators” (thieves) will be prosecuted.
Similarly, murderers and slavers of great apes in the wild will be prosecuted as much as the murderers and slavers of free humans, if people think great apes are developed enough to not count as property, which gets rid of the problem that animal conservation needs to be done through ownership. If animal conservation is best done through ownership, then why isn’t human conservation best done through slavery? Because people are willing to protect each other. So if we are willing to pay for the protection of animals, then it will be done.
Therefore, realistically rather than morally speaking, animals are excluded from or included in the NAP as far as they and rest of us are willing and able to pay for them being excluded or included. In the same way, you or I have rights if we or someone else are willing and able to pay for them.
The problem I see in general with libertarian theorists is that they’re too rigidly legalistic, having a one-law-fits-all mentality more appropriate for a monarchic system where the law is decided by one person (themselves) and that one person’s theory rather than the individual decisions of a whole society. Do I think abortion is allowed under the NAP? Personally, I do. However, there isn’t a single constitutional libertarian law - we’ve gone way past that Rothbardian idea. So would abortion be allowed in a society that follows libertarian/ancap principles? I don’t know, because it could technically apply either way. Breaches of what you think the NAP is would happen all the time in an ancap society because your interpretation differs from that of other people, even if you’re an arbiter. All I know about a polycentric legal order is that it doesn’t permit victimless crimes, and even that is somewhat iffy. What I would say is that if a democracy would preserve animal rights, then a polycentric legal order with the same people would broadly probably also preserve animal rights, except that the opinions of the people would be even more directly represented. The system only makes it easier for peoples opinions to be represented and for you to live under the kind of law you would want to live under. Everything else is conjecture. The question of ‘would this be permitted under libertarian law?’ should better be asked ‘does your theory is libertarianism permit you to patronise a DRO that permits this?’ - the former is asked too often for my liking.
I encounter a lot of skepticism with regard to consumer activism, so it’s important to get this straight: I’m not talking about boycotts, because we all know they don’t really work most of the time. In an ancap society, you effectively vote with your feet. If you don’t want to live under the law set out by one DRO, then you change your DRO and that changes what law you live under and what the law more broadly is through market pressure. It’s not a question of will-it-work-or-won’t-it, it’s literally how it works. It’s the mechanism by which law is written.You boycott a firm because it does something you don’t like. You simply don’t patronise a firm if it doesn’t provide the service you want, or does so poorly. The difference is that the latter has a specific effect on you and your life, so you have an incentive to do it, and that’s what I’m talking about when I say that people will patronise firms that produce the sort of law they want to live under.