You Can't Be Breaking the Rules When You Are Creating the Rules!
So, we received this interesting comment from Bob Murphy:
"Right, and if an NBA referee got caught throwing a game because a gambler paid him under the table, I'm sure you and Argosy Jones would laugh your heads off at the idiots claiming that was somehow "cheating" or "against the rules." Anything goes in the private sector! The winner is whoever pays the most to the judge, duh."
Of course, this was not at all what Argosy Jones and I contended: what we noted was that under some popular versions of anarcho-capitalism, what laws are "best" should be determined by supply-and-demand factors, just as we determine what sorts of bread should be made and how many massage therapists we "need." And if someone declares that is how law should be made, it is hard to see what their objection is if, under some future anarcho-capitalist system, Microsoft, Disney, Monsanto, etc. decide that our current intellectual property laws are way too weak, and pay billions to ancap defense agencies to enforce even stronger IP protection than we now have. In doing so, these companies would not be acting "against the rules": the rules are supposed to be determined by market forces, and all they are doing is "voting" for rules they prefer with their own dollars.
What is fascinating here is that Murphy, in writing the above comment, is apparently unaware of the work of this important anarcho-capitalist writer, who declared that "Profitability is the standard" by which we should judge law, and that there is no need to worry about what rules we ought to have: we can "let the market take care of it, automatically." In the scenario I just described, the ancap defense agencies are doing just what they ought to, according to the above-linked writer: they are letting profitability be the standard as to what the law should be. I recommend Murphy pick up a copy of that book and fully absorb its lessons.