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A question for libertarians re: discrimination and private organizations

#11Barenziah Boy ToyPosted 6/21/2013 7:43:32 PM(edited)
he cant do anything to stop you(or anyone else) from moving in next door and opening a similar restaurant that allows anybody in.
Large businesses and private associations can certainly find competition-killing ways to prevent someone from moving in next door and opening a similar restaurant
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You don't need a treaty to have free trade. M Rothbard
{Self-Hating Token Asian of the Ivory Tower's Zionist Elite}
#12RedcountPosted 6/21/2013 9:03:28 PM
But that wouldn't impact the competition if the competition is catering only to the minority that won't be served by the other business. If you won't serve Lebanese people at your barbershop, just watch a Lebanese barbershop open up across the street.

What a lot of people miss with this kind of thing is also the fact that people will boycott discriminatory businesses. Can you imagine the outrage, the media attention, if some place said they wouldn't serve someone because they were Asian, or pregnant, or blind, or from New Zealand? The vast majority of consumers simply wouldn't patronise such an establishment, knowing about its discriminatory policies.

If you don't serve Jews, you'll find yourself not only out Jewish customers, but also customers who think it's wrong that you won't serve Jews, which is a much larger percentage of the population.
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"Does the pool boy is also a millionaire?" - RodrigoErwin
#13aarrgusPosted 6/21/2013 9:38:06 PM
Redcount posted...
But that wouldn't impact the competition if the competition is catering only to the minority that won't be served by the other business. If you won't serve Lebanese people at your barbershop, just watch a Lebanese barbershop open up across the street.

What a lot of people miss with this kind of thing is also the fact that people will boycott discriminatory businesses. Can you imagine the outrage, the media attention, if some place said they wouldn't serve someone because they were Asian, or pregnant, or blind, or from New Zealand? The vast majority of consumers simply wouldn't patronise such an establishment, knowing about its discriminatory policies.

If you don't serve Jews, you'll find yourself not only out Jewish customers, but also customers who think it's wrong that you won't serve Jews, which is a much larger percentage of the population.


Except when you end up in a location where there is only one business that provides a good or service there. Then all the sudden some excluded minority has to drive 25 miles to get those goods or services. And being a minority to begin with, the minority cannot build a new sustainable business against the existing dominant business. So you have a de facto monopoly that has exclusionary policies that no one can unseat and yet no one can ignore. You can say that such businesses wouldn't survive, yet they did for 100 years. And thrived in many locations.

No business operates without the community and the community encompasses everyone in it. Roads are built with taxes. People are educated in the schools. Community public works make it a desirable place to live. Businesses are licensed and zoned by governments that represent everyone in the community. A business cannot discriminate, not because it would hurt business, but because in the vast majority of cases it is illegal... as it should be. By law. Not because of some libertarian dreamland.
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Last night I was lying in bed, staring at the stars, and I wondered... Where the **** is my roof?
#14RedcountPosted 6/21/2013 9:58:27 PM
Except when you end up in a location where there is only one business that provides a good or service there.

If that's the case, then it's probably not a place that has a very diverse population to begin with.

Then all the sudden some excluded minority has to drive 25 miles to get those goods or services.

Again, I really don't see businesses discriminating as a rule. It goes against the profit motive. But if they did and someone has to drive 25 miles for ice cream, what of it?

And being a minority to begin with, the minority cannot build a new sustainable business against the existing dominant business.

A very weak point; why would a minority have trouble creating a business? Many forms of business are almost the exclusive property of minorities. I don't think I've ever seen a white person own a convenience store.

So you have a de facto monopoly that has exclusionary policies that no one can unseat and yet no one can ignore. You can say that such businesses wouldn't survive, yet they did for 100 years. And thrived in many locations.

And the world hasn't changed one bit in 100 years! It's not like you can post about experiencing discrimination on some kind of global information network, or contact the media to let them know about this. It's not as though demographics or values have changed, either.

No business operates without the community and the community encompasses everyone in it. Roads are built with taxes. People are educated in the schools. Community public works make it a desirable place to live. Businesses are licensed and zoned by governments that represent everyone in the community. A business cannot discriminate, not because it would hurt business, but because in the vast majority of cases it is illegal... as it should be. By law. Not because of some libertarian dreamland.

Well, I'm not a big fan of licenses or zoning, so you won't win me on that.

But your argument seems to come down to the tired old line of "we're a society!". How far does that line of thinking go? Should the government regulate what hours a business can be open? What language people should speak in the business? What things should cost?

Roads are built with taxes, schools are funded by taxes. Businesses are not. Or at least shouldn't be. And that makes all the difference in the world.

If a restaurant owner told me he wouldn't serve me because I'm a pale-faced white devil, I'm tell my friends. I'd tweet about it to the media. And I would find another place to get aloo gobi.

Let me ask, what do you think should be the remedy is someone does discriminate in the provision of services? Should I be able to sue someone for damages because I couldn't get dinner somewhere? What dollar figure does one put on "butthurt"?
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"Does the pool boy is also a millionaire?" - RodrigoErwin
#15aarrgusPosted 6/21/2013 10:14:56 PM
Redcount posted...

Let me ask, what do you think should be the remedy is someone does discriminate in the provision of services? Should I be able to sue someone for damages because I couldn't get dinner somewhere? What dollar figure does one put on "butthurt"?


The business is not necessarily responsible for damages to an individual in such a scenario. Sometimes yes, depending on the exact circumstances of the discrimination, but that's case by case. A simple refusal of service is not usually individually criminal, unless other things happen in the incident (harassment, embarrassment, assault, etc etc).

However the government can bring suit, if the business is in violation of their license or the law. It is the responsibility of the government to uphold the laws and if a business is in violation of them then it is their role to remedy the situation. If the business refuses to correct their illegal policies then they are no longer licensed and can no longer operate in that location. And guess what? That works better than libertarian fantasyland.
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Last night I was lying in bed, staring at the stars, and I wondered... Where the **** is my roof?
#16RedcountPosted 6/21/2013 10:26:23 PM
A simple refusal of service is not usually individually criminal, unless other things happen in the incident (harassment, embarrassment, assault, etc etc).

No, it's never criminal. It's a civil issue that in Ontario can be dealt with in Superior Court or through the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal.

However the government can bring suit, if the business is in violation of their license or the law. It is the responsibility of the government to uphold the laws and if a business is in violation of them then it is their role to remedy the situation. If the business refuses to correct their illegal policies then they are no longer licensed and can no longer operate in that location. And guess what? That works better than libertarian fantasyland.

That's certainly not how things operate here. It's a civil issue. I think our system is bad enough, but the situation you described actually makes the anti-civil rights "human rights" regime we live under sound next to palatable.
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"Does the pool boy is also a millionaire?" - RodrigoErwin
#17aarrgusPosted 6/21/2013 10:35:01 PM
Redcount posted...
A simple refusal of service is not usually individually criminal, unless other things happen in the incident (harassment, embarrassment, assault, etc etc).

No, it's never criminal. It's a civil issue that in Ontario can be dealt with in Superior Court or through the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal.

However the government can bring suit, if the business is in violation of their license or the law. It is the responsibility of the government to uphold the laws and if a business is in violation of them then it is their role to remedy the situation. If the business refuses to correct their illegal policies then they are no longer licensed and can no longer operate in that location. And guess what? That works better than libertarian fantasyland.

That's certainly not how things operate here. It's a civil issue. I think our system is bad enough, but the situation you described actually makes the anti-civil rights "human rights" regime we live under sound next to palatable.


Poor choice of words. I used criminal because I was thinking of some cases in which discrimination was a part of things like harassment or assault against customers (I was thinking of things like the Waffle House incidents I think). The actual discrimination actions would most likely fall under civil issues.
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Last night I was lying in bed, staring at the stars, and I wondered... Where the **** is my roof?
#18TheBlackCat13Posted 6/22/2013 5:50:35 AM
Redcount posted...
What a lot of people miss with this kind of thing is also the fact that people will boycott discriminatory businesses. Can you imagine the outrage, the media attention, if some place said they wouldn't serve someone because they were Asian, or pregnant, or blind, or from New Zealand? The vast majority of consumers simply wouldn't patronise such an establishment, knowing about its discriminatory policies.

If you don't serve Jews, you'll find yourself not only out Jewish customers, but also customers who think it's wrong that you won't serve Jews, which is a much larger percentage of the population.

Except for the fact that this simply didn't happen. it wasn't the case that there were widespread boycotts of any business that refused to serve blacks, for example (there certainly were well-publicized boycotts at time, but there was no general refusal to do business with businesses that denied services to blacks). They had to be forced to stop because of the civil rights act.

Where are the widespread boycotts today of businesses that refuse to serve Muslims or atheists? Heck, there are boycotts today of business that set up anti-discrimination policies to protect homosexuals.

That is one of the major problems with this whole idea. It assumes that the community does not share the prejudices of the business. But in many cases they do. The businesses are not aliens, they are members of the community, and as such often share the same prejudices. And when that happens, the minority group has no one to turn to.
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Man Is The Lowest Cost, 150 Pound, Nonlinear, All-purpose Computer System Which Can Be Mass Produced By Unskilled Labor
-- NASA
#19Barenziah Boy ToyPosted 6/22/2013 7:18:39 AM
Roads are built with taxes, schools are funded by taxes. Businesses are not. Or at least shouldn't be. And that makes all the difference in the world.
Of course they are. Businesses are completely dependent on government services to protect them and maintain a steady market flow
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You don't need a treaty to have free trade. M Rothbard
{Self-Hating Token Asian of the Ivory Tower's Zionist Elite}