ana019: Public Space: The Missing Link Between Freedom and Property | Tim's Porcfest Speech 2018

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Tim's speech from Porcfest 2018 expands on the ideas he presented in his previous speech, and presents a more cohesive framework for addressing issues related to Public Space within libertarian theory. He challenges some libertarian orthodoxy, in particular Hans-Hermann Hoppe's conception of public space as simply an extension of private property.

Also: Helicopters 🚁🚁🚁

Use hashtag #ana019 to reference this episode in a tweet, post, or comment.

View full show notes at https://anarchitecturepodcast.com/ana019.

Download Slideshow as PDF

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Speech Notes

Note: YouTube with slideshow coming soon.

PorcFest XV | June 21, 2018

“Property is theft; Property is freedom: these two propositions stand side by side...and each is shown to be true” - Pierre-Joseph Proudhon

From Selected Writings of Pierre-Joseph Proudhon, ed. Stewart Edwards, Macmillan 1969. p.133

Public Space Is Where Freedom Happens

Public Space: Space that is accessible to non-owners without invitation, with reasonable restrictions

Not always “public property.” Government owned and privately owned

Many types of public space - Open Space, Buildings, Pathways

Degrees of access with permissions

Restrictions on entry and occupancy – Fees, hours, use, behavior

Many private facilities have public space components (i.e. Lobbies)

Expectation of entry (if not occupancy) on most properties

Freedom of Movement

Access - enter and exit, with reasonable restrictions (fees for wear and tear, hours of use, etc.)

Occupancy

Immigration

Freedom of Association

Meet with others

Assembly

Protest

Special Events - Block party, parade, bike race

Freedom of Exchange

Farmers’ Market

Boot Sale

Food Trucks

Sidewalk Entrepreneurship

Peer to peer exchange

Satoshi Squares

Freedom to Bear Arms / Self-defense

Transport weapons to private property

Restrictions on self-defense in public spaces may expose the owners of public space to liability for not protecting

occupants

Four Tiers of Public Space

Private Space – Invitation only / eviction rights.

Maximum freedom for owner, minimal freedoms for public.

Permissive Public Space – Public access and uses permitted by owner. Revocable defined freedoms.

Protected Public Space – Public access and uses protected by easement, legal rights, etc. Irrevocable defined freedoms.

Unowned Public Space – State of nature. Unlimited public access and uses. Maximum freedom for public, potential for conflict.

We should fight for a free society in which public space exists.

How do we divest public space from government ownership and control while preserving the freedom of public space?

Hoppe’s Private, Common, and Public Property

Hans-Hermann Hoppe, “Of Private, Common, and Public Property and the Rationale for Total Privatization,” Libertarian Papers 3, 1 (2011)

Property Ownership as Conflict Avoidance (paraphrased)

Physical conflicts over scarce goods can be avoided if every good is exclusively controlled by some specified individual or group.

To avoid all physical conflict from the beginning of mankind, all property must go back through a chain of conflict-free property title transfers to acts of original appropriation (homesteading).

Hoppe’s Village

Unowned / Unused Land (State of Nature)

Unowned Land In Use

Homesteaded Private Property

Homesteaded Private Neighborhood

Public Space Conflict (Scarcity)

Solution 1 - Government-Owned “Public” Property

Villagers form a government to own and manage the street.

The Government:

Restricts access by villagers and foreigners

Sets rules and regulations

Controls commercial activity and development on street

Requires payment - user fees or taxes

Does not allow exit from ownership

Gains control over abutting private property (encirclement)

Hoppe’s Village – Government-Owned “Public” Property

Solution 2 – Homesteaded Private Property

Individual or group “homesteads” the road by making repairs, granting them exclusive ownership

The Owner:

Restricts access by villagers and foreigners

Sets rules and regulations

Controls commercial activity and development on street

Requires payment - user fees or taxes subscription

Does not allow exit from joining ownership

Gains control over abutting private property (encirclement)

Hoppe’s Village – Homesteaded Private Property

Solution 2.1 – Homesteaded Private Property with Easement

Individual or group “homesteads” the road by making repairs, granting them exclusive ownership. Villagers are granted a right-of way easement.

The Owner:

Restricts access by villagers and foreigners

Sets rules and regulations

Controls commercial activity and development on street

Requires payment by foreigners only - user fees or taxes subscription

Does not allow exit from joining ownership

Gains control over Restricts foreigners’ access to abutting private property (encirclement) (border control)

Hoppe’s Village – Homesteaded Private Property / Easement

Hoppe’s Easement Problem:

“For, by definition, as the first appropriator he cannot have run into any conflict with anyone in appropriating the good in question, as everyone else appeared on the scene only later.”

Easement means:

First appropriator did run into conflict, with previous users

Use alone creates property rights, not just Lockean labor (improvements)

Property rights can be granted to an unorganized collective (public), not just individual or organized group entity

Property rights are divisible and can be allocated, not just exclusive control.

Modes of Property Ownership

(borrowed from Cynefin project management theory)

Disorder - Unowned land

Simple Ownership – Property rights allocated to one defined individual or group

Complicated Ownership – Property rights allocated among multiple defined individuals or groups

Complex Ownership – Property rights allocated among multiple defined and undefined individuals or groups (i.e. the public)

Chaotic Ownership - Unpredictable allocation of property rights among multiple defined and undefined individuals or groups

Hoppe’s Village – Homesteaded Private Property

Hoppe’s Village – Homesteaded Private Property / Easement

Hoppe’s Village – Protected Public Space

We Need to Talk About Helicopters

In a covenant concluded among proprietor and community tenants for the purpose of protecting their private property, no such thing as a right to free (unlimited) speech exists, not even to unlimited speech on one’s own tenant-property. …no one is permitted to advocate ideas contrary to the very covenant of preserving and protecting private property, such as democracy and communism.There can be no tolerance toward democrats and communists in a libertarian social order. They will have to be physically separated and removed from society.” - Hans Herman Hoppe

Democracy - The God That Failed: The Economics and Politics of Monarchy, Democracy, and Natural Order (Transaction: 2001) p. 218

A covenant among proprietor and community tenants

What people get wrong about Hoppe

“Physical Removal” means eviction from private property (Tier 1 Private Space) by its owner. That’s it. No helicopters, folks.

Hoppe’s restrictions on speech are consented to within the covenant community and do not apply outside that community.

What Hoppe gets right:

In a covenant community, property owners can voluntarily agree to mutually restrict their freedoms, including speech about communism.

Covenant violators could be evicted from the community, if allowed by the covenant terms.

This is not aggression. The violator consented to removal.

What Hoppe gets wrong:

"Shh.. The libertarians are listening..."

Covenant community restrictions only apply to property owners

“Libertarian” covenant communities would not choose to restrict speech, movement, etc. even if such covenants were possible, which they aren’t

Collectivized covenant communities are not “a libertarian social order.” They are communist.

How do covenant communities make decisions? Democracy!

No government-run nation, state, or village is a voluntary covenant community

Private ownership of public space does not necessarily grant the owner right to admit or exclude others.

In a libertarian society, there should be a network of protected public spaces from which you cannot be physically removed.

Divesting Government Property

Why Divest Government Property?

Basis for the state’s power and perceived legitimacy

Private landownership maximizes freedom for landowner and minimizes conflict among permitted users

Protected Public Space can maximize freedom for the public and minimize conflict through negotiated easements / rules

Less justification for eminent domain

Municipal police are not needed to secure private property

Windfall capital endowment for the poor (and everyone else)

Land Available for Homesteading (See table image below)

Methods of Divestiture (See comparison table image below)

To the Taxpayers (Hoppe)

To the Workers

To the Users

To the Abutters

To the Citizens

To the Creditors

To the Victims of History (Restitution)

To the Highest Bidder (Auction)

Lottery

Vouchers

Seizure in revolution

Opt-In Trusts

A form of non-governmental public ownership

Anyone can establish an ownership share at no cost

Anyone can relinquish an ownership share

Owners choose board members / management

Owners have a stake in decision making

Owners receive benefits of ownership (profit)

Owners may be responsible for costs

Owners establish access rights and rules

Creating an Opt-in Trust

Someone creates a Declaration of Trust (legal document)

Defines criteria and process for opting-in

Defines rights and responsibilities of owners and users

Individuals opt-in to claim ownership shares

New owners further evolve Trust policies

Divesting Government Property to an Opt-in Trust

Anarchitecture Podcast convinces governments to divest property

Various Opt-in Trusts compete to persuade government to divest to them

Multiple Opt-in Trusts may merge to be more viable

Government transitions ownership of a specific property to a Trust

Sources of Revenue

Owner Fees (may be limited by Trust)

User Fees (may be limited by easements)

Abutter Impact Fees (curb cuts, utility work)

Utility Fees (purchase easements, work permit fees)

Land-Leases (mining, logging, operators, food trucks, events)

Advertising (billboards, signboards, naming rights)

Donations

Raising Capital For Improvements

Owner Fees (may be limited by Trust)

Investment Shares – Separate from Opt-In Shares. Proportional to value of improvements

Bonds – May be collateralized by improvements (not land value)

Asset Sales – Limited by Trust and easements.

Maintenance Costs

Paid by Trust

Wear and tear

Security

Insurance

Claim Damages

Management / Administrative

Profits

Savings for future improvements

Discounts to users

Dividends to Opt-In Shares. Each additional share dilutes previous shares.

Dividends to Investment Shares. Proportional to value of improvements.

Conclusion

Public space is where freedom happens

4 Tiers – Private, Permissive, Protected, Unowned

Modes of Ownership – Disorder, Simple, Complicated, Complex, Chaotic

A libertarian society should have a network of protected public spaces connecting sovereign private properties

Government property should be divested to public forms of ownership with protections for established freedoms

Opt-In Trusts may be the best method of divestiture

Discussion

Lancaster or Lebanon?

Tim was offered a helicopter ride

Helicopter memes - taken too seriously?

Covenant Communities

Red Meat and Sacred Cows

Protected Public Space vs. Hoppean border controls

A more nuanced view - Public Space as a separate category of analysis

"Governing the Commons" - Elinor Ostrom

Separable rights to uses of public space

Aggression defined as "Interference with established use"

Homesteading uses vs. homesteading land

Private public spaces could still exist (e.g. within private gated communities)

Covenant Communities are overrated

Hoppeville is a communist arrangement. That's why the houses were red.

Sovereign private property connected by a network of public space

More on Opt-in Trusts

Two objections

Objection 1: Tragedy of the Commons

Would a market process emerge to convert unsuccessful spaces to other uses?

Road network maintained as a whole - big roads subsidize smaller feeder roads

Objection 2: A trust could become a state

Limited scope of Opt-in Trusts

Opt-in implies Opt-out

How does an Opt-in Trust enforce user fees?

Common law adjudication

Established penalties could inform appropriate user fees

Fees are for service provided, not access per se

Right of eviction for chronic deadbeats

Get these ideas into the literature

Bonus! The sounds of Porcfest (Raw Audio)

Links/Resources

Hans-Hermann Hoppe:

Of Private, Common, and Public Property and the Rationale for Total Privatization,” Libertarian Papers 3, 1 (2011). ONLINE AT: libertarianpapers.org.

Democracy - The God That Failed

The Case for Free Trade and Restricted Immigration

Tragedy of the Commons by Garret Hardin

Governing the Commons (PDF) by Elinor Ostrom

Our previous discussions:

ana013: Private Ownership of Public Space | Part 1: Tim’s Porcfest Speech

ana014: Private Ownership of Public Space | Part 2: Exploring Opt-In Trusts

Images

Images from Tim's slideshow are included in the show notes at https://anarchitecturepodcast.com/ana019.

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