I cba quoting around things I'm replying to, it's all in order though so you'll not have too much trouble understand what I'm responding to (I think).
(Original post by Melancholy)
It doesn't follow that it's 'meaningless', which trivially speaking just means that something lacks 'meaning'. Clearly 'negative liberty' and 'freedom' have very strict definitions in the field, but if you want to deny that then it seems you have to be a sceptic about language in general, because you can hardly explicate, for instance, the universal indicator any further without being circular ("for all", "every", "there is none that is not", etc.). And I'll come back to my objection before - saying that people desire to have a world free from poverty is not 'meaningless' (language can even be imagined in a picture, which ensures that it's certainly not senseless). It expresses a very clear will, intention and desired outcome. It's describes an 'end'. What you really mean to say is that it's not an adequate, response, by itself, to the question of what political ideology one supports, because you need to outline a means by which to achieve that ends. Now sure, you reject their normative claims (though if we count 'intuition' as normative, as you seem to do, then pretty much every aspect of philosophy is normative, but I wouldn't call it meaningless or valueless - I take quite seriously people's [including my own] well-observed preferences 'not' to be murdered, and you're relying on some intuition that we should not because you exclude other intuitions in your assumption that logical 'is' statements must only exist - quite odd, since the likes of Godel dabbled in doxastic logic; maybe there's something you know that none of the rest of us do).
Also, I think the roots of this sort of discourse are much much
deeper than the Enlightenment (and our psychological dependency on the intuition-centric view of philosophy is probably much deeper than that). Even the Ancients relied on intuitions about justice and fairness in some of their literature, which remain fairly similar to what they are today (there's much more to ancient ethics than just Aristotelian Virtue Ethics). Granted, the rationale for such statements is much more sophisticated (we generally dislike pain, we generally don't want to live in a world where pain exist, let's grant some rights in a social contract). Maybe you can't evaluate it successfully with your conception of logic (much like they can't fully accommodate paradoxes, hence paraconsistent logic), but then maybe that's not strictly my problem, since I don't rely on ungrounded 'is' statements alone in order to be a Rawlsian moral constructivist.
Ultimately, coming in with the same sceptic voice about morals when talking to people who are analysing each others argument (working with the premises and the concepts) to see if they're consistent with what they believe in, doesn't really exhibit much philosophical charity in a subject with massive question marks hanging over it, which is a bad thing, imo, and it misses the point of discussions of what we 'ought' to do according to their own intuitions/value-system.
When a Libertarian uses a consistent definition of liberty, and say that capitalism as-it-is, does not meet that standard, then that is not circularly defining liberty which already has a specific meaning. There's no equivocation involved, nor any inconsistency - they're just stating a fact - and that process itself is not value-laden (in the sense that new values aren't introduced to make that point; it's just stating a definition and saying that 'xyz' does not match that definition).
But anyway, my main point is that you're using a rather unconventional definition of 'meaningless'.
I said something like "meaningless for discussion about the political economy". Sure, if they want to talk about their values then they can do that but just because they (or you) attach some mystical meaning to other peoples values doesn't suddenly make it relevant.
No, "freedom" does not have a strict definition, that's why we have huge variation in the branches of leftism (and modern rightism, which is really just rightism corrupted by leftist institutions - broadly speaking, the nation state) who want to use very very different tactics to "set people free". "Negative liberty" may be better defined, but it's useless - the liberty to be left alone? I can do nothing with that. I can't even curl up in a foetal position and suck my thumb until I die from hunger.
I'm certainly not a sceptic about language - indeed I thought you were the one who claimed that all language is ultimately circular.
Ends are irrelevant to this discussion. Honestly, I'd quite like everyone to be my slave and for me to be worshipped as a God-king, but I don't define my terms to make this seem more probable of happening.
It doesn't follow from the fact that I reject normatives that I'm a solipsist. Sigh.
It was the Enlightenment that essentially gave birth to leftism. It was the Enlightenment philosophers that misunderstood what value is and attached undue significance to it, resulting in the kind of craziness today that we see with people thinking value has some kind of ontological status. It was hugely influenced by egalitarian delusions, if the ancients actually cared about "fairness" as you say then I'm quite sure that that their conception of it was different from yours. The idea that justice is anything but the practice of the law is also a product of the Enlightenment; before it, the customary law system ruled relatively supreme and it was "just" because it was the law. Before this, justice was no more than a vocation. The Enlightenment tainted justice with morality, they're two distinct spheres (one real, the other fictive).
Except most people don't have a consistent definition of liberty to begin with; that, or it's an empty or irrelevant definition. And their definition is what's normative in the first place, unless they use definitions used in customary law because these are actually recognised in reality. Liberty is badly defined by nearly every philosopher (with the exception of some counter-Enlightenment ones). Stirner hit the nail on the head when he described positive liberty as nothing but power (or "might", as he preferred to use); and negative liberty is, as I've said a few times already, pretty worthless.
(Original post by AnarchistNutter)
Dear me. First of all you discard the entirity of Marx's analysis of labour exploitation, commodities, use-values and exchange-values - it would seem that you are suggesting a complete denial of labour exploitation by capitalists who then value products in order to maximise profit - then you say that anarcho-syndicalism and fascism (which if you look on the political spectrum with anarcho-syndicalism being in the bottom left quadrant and fascism being at centre-right, extremely authoritarian) are esentially the same thing when they are almost polar opposites as ideologies and then you say Spain was not anarchistic, rather it was fascist! Please provide me with your own unique definitions of socialism - I can't be bothered to trawl through the pages of this thread to find them. However, to describe nazism as fascism is certainly debatable - I will give you that. As for my characterisation of freedom - this was merely to state that to me, and to most anarchists, freedom is not the abstract philosophical complex that you would make it out to be.
Yes, it's wrong. Yes, I'm denying "labour exploitation". Did you not understand what I wrote about why I reject it? Do you have anything to actually challenge what I wrote or are you just dumbfounded into speechlessness that I reject it? You must hang out on Revleft too much, its about the worst forum on the internet.
Can anyone tell me why the hell profit is such a dirty word in this thread? Are people really under the pretense that if a capitalist profits, the labourer is "exploited"?
Lol. Is your political knowledge distilled from that graph in your sig?
Nowhere did I say Spain was fascistic, if I did then either I was very tired and wrote incorrectly or I was just ambiguous. I don't think either of these is the case, though, I think you're just trying to strawman me. Failure.
Socialism - a system of social organisation where the economy is de facto controlled by the state.
I don't make freedom out to be an "abstract philosophical complex".
EDIT: I quoted you before you edited your post, see http://mises.org/humanaction/chap33sec4.asp
to see what I'm talking about re. guild socialism -> fascism. Nice that you recognise that guild socialism and syndicalism are similar, by the way.