Why Exposing Libertarian Bigots Is Important

Here is the blog RightWatch:

Since their guru, Mr. Hoppe, appeared on the scenes to sully libertarianism, the Rockwell position against immigrants has been seeping into libertarian thinking. Not only is that argument attracting bigots and racists to libertarianism, it pushes some libertarians in the racist direction. Not long ago a Libertarian Party elected city council member in Missouri proposed city legislation to confiscate the businesses of anyone who hires an illegal immigrant. This sort of racist thinking has gone so far that it is now deemed “libertarian” to confiscate private businesses for not discriminating. Worse yet, when a libertarian activists in the state tried to get the state LP to disassociate themselves from this act, the party officials refused. At that point I thought the Libertarian Party was too infested to be saved. And every time I would talk with these people they were throwing back at me the exact same arguments that the Rockwell site was promoting.

Over and over I found myself facing Rockwell’s arguments ,and every time it was pushing people toward some sort of bizarre combination of libertarianism, isolationism (as opposed to non-interventionism) and racialism. The threads of hate, that I have exposed here, were coming together and the whole libertarian movement was being effected, even if the people mouthing these arguments often didn’t know where they originated. Eventually it reached the point that Hoppe felt confident enough to openly bring advocates of racial supremacy to speak at his “libertarian” conference -- which is meant to be an alternative to the Mont Pelerin Society, where the Rockwellians have no influence.

Now Paul’s skeletons are partially out of the closet. His newsletters are now infamous. His close connections to the Mises Institute is now public knowledge. For the most part the Mises Institute connections to racists and anti-Semites is still not known, or at least not publicized. Some have noticed and commented on Rockwell’s ties to neo-Confederate (and heavily racialist) groups. But the mentions have been few and far between. At some point some journalist will stumble across that vipers nest and the truth will come out. [...]

Maybe now they will see that some people are very destructive to libertarianism and that they sully the honor of a great man. I do think we need an institute that promotes the thinking and economics of Ludwig von Mises. But what did Mises say about the Confederacy? Mises fled a racialist regime that was about to arrest him. He was long dead when his name was used to promote policies and thinkers who, I think, Mises would have found repulsive. I can’t see the man who fled Nazi prosecution hanging out with people who speak to neo-Nazi conferences.

So this is the opportunity libertarians have to clean house. They must severe their ties to the racialists and bigots. They can end their support of the Rockwellians. Just because these people do some good things does not undo the great harm they are also doing. Disassociation is the only real option that libertarians have. They ought to stop funding this group and stop associating with it -- even if they do like some of the policies or some of the projects. The utter immorality of the racism and bigotry more than undermines what good the MI people do. The good is corrupted because it is associated with the evil. The evil does not bring anything of value to the good but the good policies and projects give credibility to the evil.

Speak out against the bigotry and racism. Disassociate yourself from these people and their projects -- even the goods ones. I hope someone else starts a good institute promoting Austrian economics, without the baggage that some people have imposed on it.

Speaking about the Ron Paul newsletter scandal, David Boaz wrote:

Those words are not libertarian words. Maybe they reflect “paleoconservative” ideas, though they’re not the language of Burke or even Kirk. But libertarianism is a philosophy of individualism, tolerance, and liberty. As Ayn Rand wrote, “Racism is the lowest, most crudely primitive form of collectivism.” Making sweeping, bigoted claims about all blacks, all homosexuals, or any other group is indeed a crudely primitive collectivism.

Libertarians should make it clear that the people who wrote those things are not our comrades, not part of our movement, not part of the tradition of John Locke, Adam Smith, John Stuart Mill, William Lloyd Garrison, Frederick Douglass, Ludwig von Mises, F. A. Hayek, Ayn Rand, Milton Friedman, and Robert Nozick. Shame on them.

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"not our comrades, not part of our movement"

To me, this sums up the whole of the libertarian "movement": a bunch of people talking about all the other people that should be ostracized from the movement.

What a stupid attack, the

What a stupid attack, the libertarian movement doesn't need people like you. Oh, wait...

In a nutshell

So in a nutshell, your problem seems to be that since there are a group of people calling themselves libertarians who are against open borders, therefore it is no longer enough for you to say, "I am a libertarian". Now you must specify, "I am a libertarian for open borders." What you think must be done is to fix the definition of "libertarian" so that it specifies "for open borders", so that you no longer have to waste your breath explaining what sort of libertarian you are.

I really can't get anything else out of this. I understand that you're for open borders, but repudiating Hoppe isn't going to open the borders. It's just going to clarify that you are a libertarian for open borders. I understand that you're against employment laws supporting closed borders, but asking the Libertarian Party to come out against those laws isn't going to make the laws go away, it's just going to clarify that the Libertarian Party stands for open borders. And so on and so forth: this all seems to be about clarifying your own position so that when you mention that you are a libertarian at a Washington DC cocktail party people don't erroneously assume that you are a racist.

No, "in a nutshell", my

No, "in a nutshell", my problem is with far greater than the self-styled libertarians who oppose free immigration. My problem is that this group overlaps with libertarians who hold many bigoted and racist views towards gays, Jews, blacks, Mexicans, and pretty much everyone who isn't a straight white Christian of European descent.

I don't want people thinking that this is the true face of libertarianism. Libertarians should demonstrate how a free society would deal with these anti-social hate mongers, through shunning, shaming, withdrawal of support and association, and that statist coercion is unnecessary to counter these clowns. All the more reason for peaceful, right-thinking libertarians to speak out against the bigots within our own ranks.

Libertarians should

Libertarians should demonstrate how a free society would deal with these anti-social hate mongers, through shunning, shaming, withdrawal of support and association, and that statist coercion is unnecessary to counter these clowns. All the more reason for peaceful, right-thinking libertarians to speak out against the bigots within our own ranks.

Would it ? I think libertarianism has much more to gain by showing that it is a thin political theory which is shaped by rights, and not values, that it allows different viewpoints to coexist. Effective segregation is done by a mutual will to ignore each other, not through attacks.

Opposition to immigration is a quite different business and should be opposed as strongly as possible.

One can "allow a different

One can "allow a different viewpoint to coexist" in the sense of respecting free speech rights while at the same time discouraging that viewpoint through one's own speech and peaceful action.

I am not interested in merely segregating or ignoring racists and bigots; I am interested in countering their hate. I don't see that happening through passivity. They need to be criticized, publicly and frequently, for what they are, and their constant obfuscation and apologetics must be rejected.

Opposition to immigration often (if not always) rests on bigoted views towards the immigrant population. It is no wonder that these two groups overlap. If libertarians want to counter anti-immigration efforts, they must be willing to counter the outright racism that comes along with those views.

Micha, Politically, I'm far

Micha,

Politically, I'm far more concerned with crimes than vices, and bigotry is only a vice in and of itself. Bigotry is just one kind of irrationality, and I don't see why it's particularly worse than other varieties. Garden variety democratic collectivists are really far more dangerous in practice because they are more widely accepted. I expect you are on friendly terms with a significant number of such people. Why is their irrationality any less repugnant than that of bigots?

If a bigot wants liberty in order to irrationally discriminate against others I have no political objection at all because that is his right. I recognize that he has bad judgment in this area, but your typical proponents of democracy do no better.

I never claimed bigotry was

I never claimed bigotry was worse than other kinds of moral failings. Garden variety democratic collectivists may indeed be far more dangerous in some sense, but I am not making common cause with garden variety democratic collectivists - they do not distort the brand of libertarianism in the same way libertarian racists do.

Okay Micha, but in day to

Okay Micha, but in day to day life are you more likely to be friendly with a bigot or a garden variety collectivist? My point is that your aversion to bigotry appears disproportionate.

If Hoppe said "I'm a paleo rather than a libertarian not I'm not making common cause with Micha" that should be the the end of it for you by your reasoning and you should ten be no more averse to Hoppe than Milton Friedman, who was an architect of payroll taxes after all.

Yet no one who reads you can think you'd react this way.

Suppose there was an anti-semite ancap who conceded that jews fully share all human rights and those rights must be as respected for jews as anyone else. This person has no intention of violating the rights of jews, instead he will defend them. Nevertheless he is repelled by jews and will privately discriminate against them when he can, as is his right.

That bigotry is irrational, but the man is politically benign. If I were for making collective political cause I'd see no reason to shun him since there is nothing wrong with his politics.

Okay Micha, but in day to

Okay Micha, but in day to day life are you more likely to be friendly with a bigot or a garden variety collectivist?

Definitely more friendly with garden variety collectivists. First, there are simply more of them around. Nearly everyone is a collectivist compared to you and me, and the vast majority hold their political beliefs without much reflection or thought; it's the status quo, what they are taught, etc. It takes some active thinking in this day and age to be a bigot, at least on the Internet and in "intellectual" circles, and that is much more disturbing than the people who just accept what they are taught or what the majority thinks. It is a chosen vice, rather than inherited one.

That bigotry is irrational, but the man is politically benign. If I were for making collective political cause I'd see no reason to shun him since there is nothing wrong with his politics.

It's the worst sort of marketing. Racists already believe they should have the freedom to be racists; they don't need additional convincing. Nonracists have good reason to be suspicious of any movement with explicit racists as spokespeople or representatives, given the ugly history of racism mixed with politics in the modern era.

"Nonracists have good reason

"Nonracists have good reason to be suspicious of any movement with explicit racists as spokespeople or representatives, given the ugly history of racism mixed with politics in the modern era."

Whereas they have less good reason to be suspicious of a non-racist like Milton Friedman, who was only pivotal in instituting the payroll tax? What about the ugly history of socialism mixed with politics in the modern era?

As to salesmanship, even if I were in the market you wouldn't make much of a sale with me because I see that you tend to dismiss the rights of bigots. For instance, given that we have anti-discrimination laws that probably aren't going away soon, do you favor their expansion to prohibit private discrimination against gays, as it is prohibited against blacks, jews, and mexican-americans? We've visited this before and your answer was yes, even though this further violates the rights of bigots. I find that sort of libertarianism to be as compromised as Hoppe's. Perhaps his newsletters are evidence of some bigotry on the part of Ron Paul, but I think Paul would defend your rights (and the rights of individuals he might be prejudiced against) far more energetically than you'd defend his. That's a significant point in his favor, by my lights.

Wasn't Friedman later

Wasn't Friedman later regretful and apologetic regarding his role in implementing the payroll tax? Hoppe and his apologists stand behind their bigotry; they certainly don't admit any wrongdoing.

As to salesmanship, even if I were in the market you wouldn't make much of a sale with me because I see that you tend to dismiss the rights of bigots.

I don't dismiss their rights; I criticize how they choose to use those rights.

For instance, given that we have anti-discrimination laws that probably aren't going away soon, do you favor their expansion to prohibit private discrimination against gays, as it is prohibited against blacks, jews, and mexican-americans? We've visited this before and your answer was yes, even though this further violates the rights of bigots.

I support gay marriage not for the purpose of extending coercive anti-discrimination law, but for the purpose of extending peaceful contractual rights. As Roderick Long wrote a while back:

These “governmental benefits” include rights that any couple either should have (e.g., the right not to have employer-paid insurance for one’s spouse counted as taxable income, or a citizen’s right not to have his/her noncitizen spouse deported) or should be able to contract into (e.g., the right to make medical decisions for one’s spouse when necessary). These are not special state-conferred privileges we’re talking about. (Of course marriage does come with such privileges also. So does being a police officer or a physician – but that’s no argument for banning gays from being police officers or physicians. Instead we should be fighting to get rid of the privileges.)

Perhaps his newsletters are evidence of some bigotry on the part of Ron Paul, but I think Paul would defend your rights (and the rights of individuals he might be prejudiced against) far more energetically than you'd defend his. That's a significant point in his favor, by my lights.

Really? I wouldn't advocate shooting Paul in the face if he was a Mexican; apparently he wouldn't extend that same courtesy to me. And you think gay marriage is more significant than this? Utter nonsense.

Wasn't Friedman later

Wasn't Friedman later regretful and apologetic regarding his role in implementing the payroll tax?

And yet there were collectivist prescriptions he never walked away from, starting with statism. He endorsed the state on balance, knowing full well it would systematically violate rights. That's the same mistake Paul makes.

Hoppe and his apologists stand behind their bigotry; they certainly don't admit any wrongdoing.

Hoppe doesn't admit to bigotry. How is that standing behind his bigotry?

Given that we have

Given that we have anti-discrimination laws that probably aren't going away soon, do you favor their expansion to prohibit private discrimination against gays, as it is prohibited against blacks, jews, and mexican-americans?

Isn't your answer still yes?

No, of course not. I only

No, of course not. I only favored extension of marriage rights. Why would you think otherwise?

What the heck are "marriage

What the heck are "marriage rights"? I married without consulting the state at all. The state was utterly impotent to prevent my marriage.

Suppose there is a bill on the table that will give gays all the rights and privileges with respect to marriage that others enjoy. Will you oppose any such law until those unjust privileges to be granted to gays are removed from the bill or as a practical matter will you endorse it as an improvement over the current situation?

What the heck are "marriage

What the heck are "marriage rights"

The right that the state return to you when you marry... the right to keep a bit more of your earned money, the right not to be deported from the US if you're an immigrant and your spouse is American, etc. Micha mentioned those rights earlier.

Being granted a tax loophole

Being granted a tax loophole is in not having one's property rights recognized.

And how does the citizenship of your spouse have anything whatsoever to do in principle with your right to not be deported?

Since it has zero to do with your rights, how is such a dispensation any recognition of your rights?

"No, of course not. I only

"No, of course not. I only favored extension of marriage rights. Why would you think otherwise?"

Micha, you once said in a comment on Catallarchy that if the abolition of black slavery hadn't been accomplished then it would be an improvement for the state to allow blacks to enslave whites on grounds of fairness.

You've made essentially equivalent comments on several occasions.

I don't remember that

I don't remember that discussion. I'd have to see it again to understand what you are talking about. It certainly doesn't sound like something I'd say.

That would be isodomy,

That would be isodomy, please, spread the word.

Long is speaking

Long is speaking nonsense::

These “governmental benefits” include rights that any couple either should have (e.g., the right not to have employer-paid insurance for one’s spouse counted as taxable income,

You have a right to be free of taxation period, it's nonsense to construe this as a right "not to have employer-paid insurance for one’s spouse counted as taxable income". Your right to be free of taxation has nothing in principle to do with your spousal status.

or a citizen’s right not to have his/her noncitizen spouse deported)

This is a *citizen's right*? Where to "citizen's rights" come from? Again, your right to move about freely has nothing in principle to do with your spousal status, the association exists only in arbitrary law.

"Of course marriage does come with such privileges also. So does being a police officer or a physician – but that’s no argument for banning gays from being police officers or physicians."

It's a great argument for banning gays from being policemen and doctors as long as such privileges exist, What's wrong with that?

It is of course an equally good reason for banning straight white men from the same occupations, until the privileges are removed.

You and Long favor changes in the law which you know will violate more rights because you feel competent to balance the rights of some against the rights of other. You like gays better than bigots so it's fine to improve the lot of gays now at the expense of bigots and worry about the rights of bigots later. Ron Paul is making exactly the same mistake with regard to immigration, favoring the violation of the rights of border crossers as the lesser evil as compared to further violations of the rights of taxpayers.

If a bigot gets shot in the face as a result of a change in law that you and Long favor as a lesser evil, do you think your hands are clean in a way that Paul's are not?

You like gays better than

You like gays better than bigots so it's fine to improve the lot of gays now at the expense of bigots and worry about the rights of bigots later.

Is it fair to say you like bigots better than gays and so oppose any change to existing marriage laws?

If a bigot gets shot in the face as a result of a change in law that you and Long favor as a lesser evil, do you think your hands are clean in a way that Paul's are not?

If gay people's right to enter into legal contracts with each other continues to be violated by obstinant politicians, and you favor this continued passivity, do you think it's fair to say your hands are clean in a way mine are not?

Just as in the case of immigration, there will be rights violations as a result of either a change to or maintenance of the existing policy. But that is the fault of government, and not a reason to exclude either immigrants or gay people from the rights to labor mobility and freedom of contract enjoyed by everyone else.

It's a great argument for

It's a great argument for banning gays from being policemen and doctors as long as such privileges exist, What's wrong with that?

Yes it is, but it is not an argument against gay marriage. Any right recovered by gays through marriage is a good thing, any privilege is their responsibility not to use.

So you'd favor a law that

So you'd favor a law that said you can get 5% off your taxes by filing as a gay, *plus* gays can now legally purchase slaves from overseas and do anything they want with them?

There's no good argument against granting the latter legal dispensation since it's just their responsibility not to use?

So you'd favor a law that

So you'd favor a law that said you can get 5% off your taxes by filing as a gay, *plus* gays can now legally purchase slaves from overseas and do anything they want with them?

You mean the state would chose not to prosecute gays engaging in slavery ?

I think I would, although you obviously pick an extreme example. Even the state has no obligation to prosecute crimes... Of course, since it maintains a monopoly on punishment, it is problematic but that's not a reason to oppose a law which does not aggress anyone. The only two possible aggression would be

- Aggression of gays against the slaves if they chose to use this privilege
- Aggression of the state against people aggressing the gay slave-owners to free the slaves

The state is not responsible for the first aggression, and the second is already built in the law.

The reason this is a bit counterintuitive is because the example is so extreme. Obviously, the privileges we are talking about are not so bad, as allowing gays to be, say policemen only marginally reduce the cost of hiring them. I am not being consequentialist, but merely saying that we are not in the greyish area of extreme situations here.

"You mean the state would

"You mean the state would chose not to prosecute gays engaging in slavery ?"

No, I mean that the state would fully recognize the slaves of gays as property and provide the same legal protection they do for other property.

" - Aggression of gays against the slaves if they chose to use this privilege
- Aggression of the state against people aggressing the gay slave-owners to free the slaves

The state is not responsible for the first aggression, and the second is already built in the law."

No, as far as I know there is no law against freeing such slaves now. The state will currently not uphold one's supposed property rights in persons. That's what the bill would change.

What you're saying seems equivalent to saying there was really no valid objection to our older slavery laws since nobody was required to own slaves. Now certainly all slaveholders were responsible for their own acts of enslavement, but it strikes me as preposterous to claim that the laws which facilitated their crimes were not also evil.

And my point is that since expanding state marriage will facilitate further crimes such laws are also evil, though obviously not on the same scale.

I use an extreme example to make the point clear.

Now one may claim to be competent to validly weigh the harm done against the good produced, but then it's hard to see how one can claim any moral high ground in the immigration debate, for instance. Nor would I see any reason to dismiss Ron Paul's views on immigration if those were the grounds on which the matter ought to be decided.

No, as far as I know there

No, as far as I know there is no law against freeing such slaves now.

1. Find a bad person holding secretely a slave captive
2. Free the slave without calling the police

I'm pretty sure you could be tried for breaking and entering.

You do make a valid point though, it is true that full recognition of "slave" property rights entail more than merely non enforcement of law on slave owners, it means the state would help capture fugitive and so on. In this case, I would agree with you the law should be opposed as it takes away some right (I fully agree with the principle that every law a libertarian support can only be a Pareto improvement of freedom).

I don't know if you're aware of it but I actually have taken moral high grounds against Ron Paul on immigration, and stated precisely that while I don't see anything wrong with supporting a politician offering more freedom, it is still evil to support Ron Paul as he suggests to commit more crimes against immigrants rather than less.

Now I am a bit lost, what kind of crimes do marriage allows one to commit with the complicity of the state again ?

Another question : right now only state-employed firemen can put off fires (if not assume it, it's not far fetched). Would you support, in addition, a law saying no-one can become a state employed fireman ?

Didn't you already concede,

Didn't you already concede, along with Long, that state marriage entails unjustified privileges? Those privileges come at a cost to others.

Anti-discrimination law is clearly an area where more crimes would occur. Presently most private companies may discriminate and decline to offer insurance to the partner of a gay employee. If that partner were to become recognized as a legal spouse you can be sure courts would not allow such discrimination.

I agree with Long that anyone should be free to contract with hospitals for terms of visitation, but in the wake of the expansion of state marriage you can be sure that hospitals would not be free to so negotiate. They would simply not be allowed to deny gay spouses visitation in most cases.

In general, private parties would often be compelled to recognize homosexual marriage.

Another question : right now only state-employed firemen can put off fires (if not assume it, it's not far fetched). Would you support, in addition, a law saying no-one can become a state employed fireman ?

Under the assumptions, no - it's not a pareto improvement as far as I can see.

Why is it not a Pareto

Why is it not a Pareto improvement ? How come anyone should have the right to be paid out of taxpayer's money ?

Back to the gay marriage -> there might be laws coming after ensuring non discrimination, but these are not the ones we're discussing. The fact that they are very likely to follow a gay marriage law is irrelevant.

Why is it not a Pareto

Why is it not a Pareto improvement ?

Because under the assumptions more houses would burn to the ground, or so it seemed to me.

How come anyone should have the right to be paid out of taxpayer's money ?

No one has such a right.

Back to the gay marriage -> there might be laws coming after ensuring non discrimination, but these are not the ones we're discussing. The fact that they are very likely to follow a gay marriage law is irrelevant.

Nope, what I've described is simply the application of existing law, with expanded membership of the legally privileged categories of individuals.

Because under the

Because under the assumptions more houses would burn to the ground, or so it seemed to me.

This does not infringe on anyone's right. Suppose the situation is

- Everyone's right to put off fire is taken by the state
- Firemen may put off fire and are paid by tax money

A change in law would make (2) disappear. That doesn't infringe on anyone's right, it actually dimishes the number of people living off taxation. It just has terribly bad consequences.

It is not an economical pareto improvement, but it is a pareto improvement in terms of rights.

JTK3 things he can play the

JTK3 thinks he can play the roles of both strict deonotologist while still making consequentialist arguments. He can't.

Suppose the situation is -

Suppose the situation is

- Everyone's right to put off fire is taken by the state
- Firemen may put off fire and are paid by tax money

A change in law would make (2) disappear. That doesn't infringe on anyone's right, it actually dimishes the number of people living off taxation. It just has terribly bad consequences.

It is not an economical pareto improvement, but it is a pareto improvement in terms of rights.

In neither case are your rights being recognized. By your proposed change the rights violations caused by (2) are diminished but the rights violations caused by (1) are exacerbated.

Take it a step further:

1) The state has you locked in a cell.
2) Food is delivered to you by a guard paid by tax revenues.

I don't see how you can say that simply eliminating that position doesn't increase the violation of your rights, since you'll starve to death and be unable to secure any rights ever again.

So that doesn't look to me like a pareto improvement with respect to rights.

It's the same kind of

It's the same kind of example, you do not have a right to be fed.

Of course not, but

Of course not, but refraining from delivering food severely exacerbates the rights violations which stem from locking you in the cell, doesn't it?

Let's say they didn't fire the guy who delivers the food - they simply decided to stop feeding you. That does increase the violation of your rights, doesn't it?

If that partner were to

If that partner were to become recognized as a legal spouse you can be sure courts would not allow such discrimination.

I don't see how this follows. Homosexuals are not currently considered a protected class under anti-discrimination law, and extending legal marriage rights to them would not necessarily change this. It might make it more likely, but we need not weigh the likely secondary effects of implementation of a law (insofar as we are arguing on deontological and not consequentialist grounds), but only the immediate and direct effects of the law.

They are,see the fair

They are,see the fair housing act for example

From wikipedia

Over the years, the legislation would be broadened further. In 1975, discrimination based on sex, marital status, sexual orientation, and political ideology were outlawed. In 1979, parental status was added; in 1986, creed and disability; and in 1999 gender identity.[4]

Technically if gays marry and you especially don't like married gays (caveat, not just gay couples or married couple, married gay couple) then this new category of people would appear and you would not be able to deny them housing.

How exactly would a new

How exactly would a new category appear in legislation without legislators (or judges) adding it? If the existing legislation already prohibits anti-gay discrimination but not anti-gay marriage discrimination, then allowing gays to marry doesn't seem to change anything. And if it doesn't already prohibit anti-gay discrimination, then allowing gays to marry doesn't seem to change anything either.

http://www.outsports.com/news

http://www.outsports.com/news/20050802lesbiancountryclub.htm

The California State Supreme Court gave a victory to gay and lesbian couples when it ruled Monday against a golf country club that had refused to give a lesbian couple the same membership benefits given to married heterosexual couples.

B. Birgit Koebke and Kendall E. French, a lesbian couple who have been domestic partners for 12 years, sued the Bernardo Heights Country Club of San Diego County. Koebke, who paid an $18,000 membership in 1987, wanted French to get the same treatment as spouses of members, but the club refused. Members’ spouses, children under 22 and grandchildren can pay golf at the club for free, but unmarried guests have to pay $40 to $75 a round and can play only six times a year.

The ruling revolved around the state’s domestic partnership law, which passed the state Legislature in 2003 and took effect Jan. 1, 2005, and grants same-sex couples (and heterosexual elderly couples) nearly the same responsibilities and benefits as married spouses, ranging from access to divorce court to liability for a partner's debts.

"The Legislature has made it abundantly clear than an important goal of the Domestic Partner Act is to create substantial legal equality between domestic partners and spouses," Associate Justice Carlos Moreno wrote for a five-judge majority. "We interpret this language to mean that there shall be no discrimination in the treatment of registered domestic partners and spouses."

This is a direct result of the domestic partnership law in California, and the result of any gay marriage proposal on the table would be more of the same.

This lesbian couple used the domestic partnership law to commit a moral crime they could not otherwise have accomplished.

This lesbian couple used the

This lesbian couple used the domestic partnership law to commit a moral crime they could not otherwise have accomplished.

It sound to me like the source of the problem is the anti-discrimination law, not the marriage laws. Why not focus on the primary source of the problem rather than the secondary ones?

Actually they did not commit

Actually they did not commit a moral crime. They signed up in 1987 and the contract probably specifies that spouses can use the facilities without giving regard to heterosexuality. The devil is in detail, the club lost money on this. It has nothing to do with discrimination.

The fact that they cannot offer a more specific contract now is of course problematic. But that's not what this case is about.

Actually they did not commit

Actually they did not commit a moral crime. They signed up in 1987 and the contract probably specifies that spouses can use the facilities without giving regard to heterosexuality.

You figure it said domestic partners could use the facilities?

The club did not intend to contract such privileges to the couple, but the couple used a change in the law to get terms they preferred.

I think the contract

I think the contract implicitly relied on the law to define what marriage was. Too bad for them. Once again I did not look at the contract but I think it's a safe assumption.

C'mon Arthur.... "It has

C'mon Arthur....

"It has nothing to do with discrimination."

It's straight from the horse's mouth:

Associate Justice Carlos Moreno wrote for a five-judge majority. "We interpret this language to mean that there shall be no discrimination in the treatment of registered domestic partners and spouses."

Look, they interpret growing

Look, they interpret growing potatoes to feed your hogs as regulated by the commerce clause, they interpret discriminating covenants as state sponsored discrimination. The lawyer just played strategically the discrimination thing but I would have sided with the lesbians in this case.

Pro tip: always side with

Pro tip: always side with the lesbians.

True. Shame so many are

True. Shame so many are strongly left-wing, though. I wonder if it's a cultural phenomenon (the minority tends to spontaneously align to a set of values to gain cohesion, reinforced by echo chambers etc) or a biological one.

1. Find a bad person holding

1. Find a bad person holding secretely a slave captive
2. Free the slave without calling the police

I'm pretty sure you could be tried for breaking and entering.

You think you would be convicted for it?

Is it fair to say you like

Is it fair to say you like bigots better than gays and so oppose any change to existing marriage laws?

It's counterfactual to say I like bigots better than gays, but who's going to believe you don't like bigots less? Do even you believe that?

If gay people's right to enter into legal contracts with each other continues to be violated by obstinant politicians, and you favor this continued passivity, do you think it's fair to say your hands are clean in a way mine are not?

I have no objection whatsoever to legislation that simply recognizes the right of contract for gays, or anyone else. Such law is mere wind, which is certainly preferable to the harmful sort of law. Any expansion of state marriage will of course be the harmful sort of law, which violates rights - it will be a crime against some.

I favor not harming others through wielding the law. You feel competent to balance the harm you do to some against the good you do for others. As does Ron Paul. It's the exact same mistake.

Yeah, my hands are cleaner.