Why is it that people tend to be un supportive of the things I want as freedoms and yet be so virile with their own desired "freedoms."

Why cant we all have these freedoms and maybe work on changing the laws in this nation too one very simple law...do no harm unless in self defense!

Just wondering?

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While I agree that some government must exist, I disagree that we all must contribute for the greater good. In fact I would go so far as too say that by demanding contributions than we are no better than our religious counterparts or communists which as we can see is a system that does not work. In every case so far this is a system that has failed.

What I am encouraging is the "disenfranchised" on both sides of the "aisle" begin to speak up but do so not to benefit directly but to further individual liberty so as to create a better more equal system, one based on what each works for versus what each is given.

You stated, "Even with corruption in politics, government at least serves as somewhat of a check against rampant opportunism... which ultimately leads to harm." and this is where social rules, i.e. laws come into play- if instead of passing laws meant to restrict we pass and enforce laws meant to punish those who break societal rules we would in fact be better off for it.

As an atheist would you willingly allow someone to force your children to do what they want versus what would allow for the freedom of choice (regarding religious expression) or would you fight for the right to maintain that free choice?

All I am presenting and all the "Libertarian platform" promotes is that right, that every man be able to judge what is best for themselves as long as that judgment/ decision does not cause direct harm to another (outside of defense of self)

For the record I do not struggle, I understand what it is I want, I understand because I have lived in highly restrictive societies and I have lived here. I prefer our freedoms (as little as they are in some areas) however, I can also see the dangers of allowing a government "of the people for the people" to become too large. When I state my intention and in fact actual history of protesting against this I am doing it not for myself, I can move as an individual, I do it for everyone. After all more freedom does not mean automatic anarchy, more freedom simply means a wider selection of available choices.

A great case in point is the current "drug war" and the affects of this "war" on our society of over the past 35+ years.
Fact, the number of incarcerated felons has increased from 320k too over 2 million in just 30 years.

Fact, addiction rates have skyrocketed since the imposition of these legal restrictions and the formation of various LEO agencies whose sole job is the enforcement of Un - Constitutional laws. (the founding fathers never meant for a government to tell us what we could and could not do with our bodies.)

Fact, illegal immigration (Hispanic) and border related crime has increased along the same time-lines that the "drug war" was enacted.

If you want true change, reduce the laws, give people back their choice- or do you feel that no one is capable of making personal decisions except those you decide on?

Lastly, why did prohibition of alcohol not work - when it was lifted crime dropped literally overnight. Less restrictions equals a fairer society, more laws and more guidelines and more government simply puts more power in the hands of those who in all fairness are not looking out for the best interests and or are not listening to the demands of the public as a whole.

So sure, you can have "Utopia" as Thomas More wrote it, or you can have true freedom where people are able to be intellectually free, and are allowed to live and control their bodies how they want with a smaller government that enforces a most basic set of laws.

Btw I highly recommend reading "Utopia" by Thomas More - written over 400 years ago it does a very good job of showing how this "sharing equally" type of society could never really work.
On a personal note I would rather live peacefully next too a catholic and a Muslim than be forced to follow only one "path" which is what must occur for true "sharing" to work.

Now for the disclaimer - I MAY BE WRONG- but at least from what I have studied it works...
It seems to me you're giving short shrift to obvious realities. There are many pedestrian examples of when individual freedoms conflict.

I have a tree that branches over your yard. Do you hack away my tree, on a vertical plane, at your property's border? What if you used a chemical that ended up killing the tree outright?

You've been robbed recently, so you get a couple of guard dogs. They bark all night and deprive the neighbors of sleep. Should you be forced to muzzle your dogs or should the neighbors be forced to be sleepy and irritable at work the next day?

Freedom is not as clean-cut as you make it seem.
I'll have to double check, but tree limbs that extend onto your property you have a right to trim, even on a vertical plane. Using chemicals to kill the tree would, in effect, be reaching across your boundary and your right.

Dogs barking all night is also a pretty clean cut scenario. Most cities have ordinances against loud noise levels between certain hours. For the same reason the cops will bust up the loud party at 2am, they could show up to have you muzzle the dogs or take them inside. The fact of a robbery is irrelevant.

I admit that I like the rule of thumb used and would be interested in hearing better examples of conflict. Of course, that is what much of the legal world revolves around.
"Logical, rational debate should never begin with phrasing that leads one to feel attacked."

Says who?
I agree. The issue is not how you feel about a reply. It's how you respond. Tough replies are valid when they make a point and avoid personal attacks. In tun, admitting wrong is not a negative outcome.
Maybe the problem isn't so much the diet of eating meat but the culture of meat and mass-consumerism itself.

Perhaps free range and smaller farms might be a good solution to the problems of the planet?

Although if a Whopper with cheese were suddenly $12, I can imagine how many "small town" joints would pop up in the place of the big chains.
I detest fast food, lol so I can readily agree with you- I utilize local free range producers (Arizona residence) and local grown greens etc. whenever possible

I generally avoid the mass consumerism bullshit after all I have lived next too and smelled one of the largest turkey "farms" in the nation - Kaufman Turkey Farms in Illinois...not pretty! (but I am logical...)

Again free range is an awesome way to approach this, and I completely embrace the idea!
That's a good point, Mario,

Meat is nutrition . . . not comfort. Consumerism aims for too much of a good thing. But that's a far cry from swearing off meat altogether.
I have heard people describe the breaking of a crustacean as almost a physical joy; possibly atavistic in nature?

I wouldn't think that the joy would be atavistic. It seems that this would deal more with the reward mechanisms in anticipation of eating a tasty and nutritious morsel.

I tried to eat a lobster once and totally failed. I did manage to crack into it, but never did I feel some primitive joy. Actually, the legs started moving as I turned it his way and that in an effort to figure it out. That sparked a fearful response from me that was probably a primitive fear of creatures with more than 4 limbs.
Right.. so I'm turning this idea over in my head, and coming to a few sleep-deprived conclusions.
I love all things crustacean-y. They are delicious in drawn butter, lemon...hmm....
However I HATE the hassle of shelling them. I usually manage to cut my fingers on sharp shells and then get lemon juice in the wounds as further insult. There is no joy in getting to the yummy goodness for me.

I have this budding idea that as generations are distanced from their meaty food sources, there will be psychological changes in our make up. An example, and the only anecdotal story I can come up with is this: I know a girl whose father owned a noodle shop somewhere in China. They would literally put puppies in a sack and beat them to death as a means of slaughter. The adrenaline that the puppies produced supposedly made the meat sweeter.
Even though she's fully assimilated into American culture, this person does not have any affection for animals. She still sees all non-humans as a food source (and I mean ALL non humans. Frogs, bugs, grubs, hey...whatever!) I'm guessing that she is the far, far end of one spectrum, where as ethical vegans are on the other. Somewhere in the middle, Jim-Duck-Hunter loves his dogs, doesn't mind his wife's cat and even rescued a baby bunny last spring.
I'm not sure where I fall. I love my dog like a child. I like animals a whole lot more than most people, but I know I'd have no problem eating an animal that I wasn't friends with. (Hell, I'd probably also have no problem eating a person that I wasn't friends with if there weren't so many down sides to it.)
That said, when I'm diving, and I swim through a school of tuna, my eyes are fixated on the slow, fat one.
Lobsters, oysters, clams....these look like wonderful, delicious food to me.

So as we continue to live in a world of total disconnect from the slaughter process, we start to see animals as companions from Disney movies. The horror of having to kill our own food will eventually evolve into the disgust that they are being killed at all.
If we keep living like we do, I think that perhaps nature will even us all out by lessening the desire to consume meat and eventually the resources to grow it.
(I'm still up for vat-factories, btw!)
I dunno. I love all red meat and most fish rare or raw. Carpaccio, sashimi....funny enough, I'm not a huge fan if it is cooked. I also don't care a whole lot for poultry or pork, and probably just for that reason. (Even I don't touch those things undercooked.)
Maybe I just haven't evolved as much as everyone else........maybe I'm still part cave-woman....
No, not quite what I meant. Hunger is definitely a primal urge, and I am using "primal" loosely as you are, but we both know what we mean.

Meat IS nutritious and our brain learns quickly that it is good. It doesn't already know this like it "knows" hunger. It is learned. Michel, as well as myself, have been acclimated to a meat heavy diet and we are unlikely to change without a serious motivator.

But the same could be said for "chocoholics" and their chocolate. Maybe not on the nutrition filling part, but on all other aspects. But people raised in a society where American style sweets are not part of the diet, they will not enjoy or crave chocolate as we know and love it.

At it's basic root, yes, our eating habits as a child do impact our dietary choices as adults. I just wouldn't call our love for meat atavistic since we are currently omnivores, which better explains our desire for meat. Sorry, maybe I am being pedantic. If so, I'll let you take me out for steaks to make it up to you. ;-)
Misty, I did not need to start my day reading about puppies being beaten to death in a sack. Ugh.

So as we continue to live in a world of total disconnect from the slaughter process, we start to see animals as companions from Disney movies. The horror of having to kill our own food will eventually evolve into the disgust that they are being killed at all.

I agree with the disconnect from our food sources. Most people eat cheeseburgers and never think about a cow. I think a better awareness of our food supply would be a great thing.

But here is where I have an objection to the desensitizing of killing animals. This smacks of specieism which, in turn, shares many traits as tribalism. From Nazi Germany's dehumanization of Jews back to the Jew's own proclivity for their own at the expense of others. I don't see humans being of that much more import than any other life form in the grand scheme. Being a human, I have personal values where I do place people close to me, as well as my canine companions, of great importance. But what I think people don't have is a good sense of perspective.

This is something I still think about and is vulnerable to "slippery slope" style attacks. Obviously, I myself am conflicted also, as I will happily eat cow and chicken and fish, placing those lives below human, dog, cat, et cetera on scale of importance. But, I would be horrified if I knew the cow I was eating was brutalized and suffered terribly before their death. This does happen in factory farming situations. Luckily, I get most of my cow from the family farm these days.


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