Did Muhammad Exist?

Ah, I don’t recall… It was a long time ago.

Robert Spencer wrote a praised book on it, though: Did Muhammad Exist?: An Inquiry Into Islam’s Obscure Origins, 2014. Maybe he has answers.

What do you mean?! Next, you’ll wonder about the Ba’al, I meant Ba’al Shem Tov (sorry), Hershel, the Yoshke figure, the Khazar king of the Kuzariand other famous Jews (?) (just having fun!)…

I didn’t read the book, but when academics speak of “existence”, they mean to say: Are all accounts referring to one and the same human being, or to several specimens?

Chassidic Antinomianism

Again we copy a wrong-headed article as a foil and intersperse mean Hassagos. You know the drill by now.

Spiritual Schizophrenia

By J. Immanuel Schochet

This is not to attack the individual, but the truth needs saying. We said it about Mussar. Now it’s Chassidus’ turn. Note the Soviet-style diagnosis (like “Islamophobia”) in Rabbi Shochet’s chosen title.

An exclusive study of the “revealed” aspect of Torah, often referred to as “nigleh“, may provide one with Torah-knowledge. He may acquire profound scholarship. Nonetheless, it allows also the possibility that the student-scholar remain separate from the Torah itself.

On a crude level, it can reflect the Talmudic metaphor of the burglar who prays to G‑d and invokes divine blessing for his immoral activity (Berachot 63b). The criminal believes in G‑d. He believes in the principle and efficacy of prayer, yet he fails to apply that on the practical or personal level. He fails to sense the inherent contradiction in his pursuits, the radical dichotomy between his religious involvement and his personal life coexisting as two altogether separate and unrelated entities.

A more subtle and sophisticated dichotomy is seen in the following incident: There was a man who had studied halachot (the laws), Sifre, Sifra, and Tossefta, and died; R. Nachman was approached to eulogize him, but he said” “How can we eulogize him? Alas! A bag full of books has been lost!” (Megilla 28b, see Rashi ad loc) The man had studied the most difficult texts; he had become very erudite, yet he did not comprehend and absorb what he had learned. He could quote chapter and verse, yet he and his quotations remained distinct from one another.

It’s not so subtle it needs to be warped! To be polite, this Gemara refers to many of those who lose their edge in what some call “Nigleh”, on account of insufficient mental attention to that same body, occasionally in favor of other fields.

The Zohar notes that the Hebrew word for donkey,”chamor“, is an acronym for the phrase “a wondrous scholar and a rabbi’s rabbi”, “chacham mufla verav rabanan” (Zohar III; 275b). One can be known as the most wondrous scholar in the world, heading the most prominent academy to train rabbis and Torah-scholars – an expert in pilpulistic methodology; but if unaware of the soul of the Torah, if not touched and penetrated by the oil of the Torah, he remains an insensitive chamor, the proverbial “donkey loaded with books.”1 He carries a whole library on his back, has stupendous knowledge at his finger-tips, yet is not touched by what he has learned.

This is the Zohar mentioned by the esteemed rabbi:

אבל רבנן, ווי לאינון דאכלין תבן טבל דאורייתא, (חמו”ר דאורייתא, דאתחשיב ח’כם מ’ופלא ו’רב ר’בנן), ולא ידעי בסתרי דאורייתא, אלא קלין וחמורין דאורייתא, קלין תבן דאורייתא, חומרא דאורייתא, חטה, חט ה’, אילנא דטוב ורע…

To be polite: My policy is those who mention this quote without apologetic humility don’t deserve to be “enlightened”. As Chazal say in “Nigleh”: כל מי שאין בו דעה אסור לרחם עליו!

A person like that may conceivably fall into the category of “a scoundrel and rake within the domain of Torah”. He may know, observe and practice all the codified requirements of halacha, yet be and remain a reprobate, a lowlife. (Ramban on Leviticus 19:2)

This is a gross misunderstanding of the Ramban and Mitzvah, bipartisan to Mussar and Chassidus alike. The issue with a “scoundrel within the domain of Torah”, is that such a scoundrel is outside  the domain of real, Halachic Torah. There is a special verse teaching us of other generic cases, which means, after the verse was written, a sinner against the prohibitions of blood and Cheilev and the one designated a “Naval bereshus hatorah” are of the same status. The Naval does not “observe and practice all requirements of halacha”!

As proof, I reproduce the Ramban at length. My apologies if this shows his group in a poor light at reading comprehension; he left me with no other choice.

Ramban Vayikra 19:2:

קדושים תהיו, הוו פרושים מן העריות ומן העבירה, שכל מקום שאתה מוצא גדר ערוה אתה מוצא קדושה, לשון רש”י אבל בתורת כהנים ראיתי סתם, פרושים תהיו וכן שנו שם (שמיני פרק י”ב ג’), והתקדשתם והייתם קדושים כי קדוש אני, כשם שאני קדוש כך אתם תהיו קדושים, כשם שאני פרוש כך אתם תהיו פרושים…

והענין כי התורה הזהירה בעריות ובמאכלים האסורים והתירה הביאה איש באשתו ואכילת הבשר והיין, א”כ ימצא בעל התאוה מקום להיות שטוף בזמת אשתו או נשיו הרבות, ולהיות בסובאי יין בזוללי בשר למו, וידבר כרצונו בכל הנבלות, שלא הוזכר איסור זה בתורה, והנה יהיה נבל ברשות התורה.

לפיכך בא הכתוב, אחרי שפרט האיסורים שאסר אותם לגמרי, וצוה בדבר כללי שנהיה פרושים מן המותרות ימעט במשגל, כענין שאמרו שלא יהיו תלמידי חכמים מצויין אצל נשותיהן כתרנגולין, ולא ישמש אלא כפי הצריך בקיום המצוה ממנו ויקדש עצמו מן היין במיעוטו, כמו שקרא הכתוב (במדבר ו’ ה’) הנזיר קדוש, ויזכור הרעות הנזכרות ממנו בתורה בנח ובלוט וכן יפריש עצמו מן הטומאה, אע”פ שלא הוזהרנו ממנה בתורה, כענין שהזכירו (חגיגה י”ח ב’) בגדי עם הארץ מדרס לפרושים, וכמו שנקרא הנזיר קדוש (במדבר ו’ ח’) בשמרו מטומאת המת גם כן וגם ישמור פיו ולשונו מהתגאל ברבוי האכילה הגסה ומן הדבור הנמאס, כענין שהזכיר הכתוב (ישעיה ט’ ט”ז) וכל פה דובר נבלה, ויקדש עצמו בזה עד שיגיע לפרישות, כמה שאמרו על רבי חייא שלא שח שיחה בטלה מימיו.

באלו ובכיוצא בהן באה המצוה הזאת הכללית, אחרי שפרט כל העבירות שהן אסורות לגמרי, עד שיכנס בכלל זאת הצוואה הנקיות בידיו וגופו, כמו שאמרו (ברכות נ”ג ב’) והתקדשתם אלו מים ראשונים, והייתם קדושים אלו מים אחרונים, כי קדוש זה שמן ערב כי אע”פ שאלו מצות מדבריהם, עיקר הכתוב בכיוצא בזה יזהיר, שנהיה נקיים וטהורים ופרושים מהמון בני אדם שהם מלכלכים עצמם במותרות ובכיעורים.

וזה דרך התורה לפרוט ולכלול בכיוצא בזה, כי אחרי אזהרת פרטי הדינין בכל משא ומתן שבין בני אדם, לא תגנוב ולא תגזול ולא תונו ושאר האזהרות, אמר בכלל ועשית הישר והטוב (דברים ו’ י”ח), שיכניס בעשה היושר וההשויה וכל לפנים משורת הדין לרצון חבריו, כאשר אפרש (שם) בהגיעי למקומו ברצון הקב”ה וכן בענין השבת, אסר המלאכות בלאו והטרחים בעשה כללי שנאמר תשבות, ועוד אפרש זה (להלן כ”ג כ”ד) בע”ה.

Halacha is no less essential to the mystic than to anyone else. Where the kabbalist or chassid differs, however, is first and foremost in his approach, in his consciousness of the universal importance of halacha and its dynamic significance. To him the study of Torah is not only a mitzvah on its own, or just a precondition for observing all other mitzvot. It is also the means to become transformed, for himself to become a Torah, a personification of Torah.

“No less essential”? Sure it is! Values come in ordinal scales. “Kabbalist or Chassid”, says he, “innocently” conflating the two as Chassidim enjoy doing. Big difference! Kabbalah is ours

One of the great Chassidic masters, R. Leib Sarahs, thus said that he traveled far and wide to come to his master, the Maggid of Mezrich, “not to hear words of Torah from him, but to see how he laces and unlaces his shoes!” He saw in the Maggid that ideal personification of Torah, where every act and motion is an expression of the ideals of the Torah. (See J.I. Schochet, The Great Maggid, p. 148)

That’s the new/old idea of Deveikus. Do I need to say it?

You might.

Read Nefesh Hachayim!

To the Kabbalist or chassid, the mitzvot are not only categorical imperatives of formal morality, acts of obedience and submission to G‑d. The term “mitzvah” is an idiom of “tzavta“, a Hebrew term meaning “being joined together”.2 It implies being unified with the very act of the mitzvah and its contents, and thus also with the the One Who commanded it. Torah study and mitzvot thus become the ultimate cleaving and attachment to G‑d Himself, the unio mystica.

Unio Mystica? Please don’t get me started! I can’t ignore it entirely, though. It’s about “nullification”, or Bittul, through humble performance, not autonomously “for the sake of [personal spiritual pleasure]”, but religious Lishma – the opposite of his attempted thrust. And speaking of Kant, he called mysticism pseudo-philosophy.

The underlying premise of mysticism is the all-inclusive exhortation of “You shall be holy” (Leviticus 19:2. see RambamSefer Hamitzvotshoresh IV), a sanctification of one’s total being, of the totality of life and the world. This is a premise that precludes perfunctory study of Torah or observance of mitzvot.

Um, no. The underlying premise of mysticism, broadly understood, following the hermeneutic principle of “Stupid is as stupid does“, is ignoring the prior, publicly determined meaning of the words one excogitates. Case in point: refer to any dictionary on the word “perfunctory“, then do your best to reread the above paragraph so it conveys substance both correct and original (unless he means “hastily” praying on time, instead of studying “Chassidus” for a few hours first, then praying after the time). You cannot? Surprise! There is good reason for this. I continue in Hebrew (it won’t work in English):

“הכופרים ב’נסתר’ בנגלה, כופרים [אף] ב’נגלה’ בנסתר”, כך ידוע בשם החתם סופר. אבל דרכנו – ומכמה טעמים – להודות בנגלה בנגלה ובנסתר בנסתר.

It is the “oil of Torah” that penetrates, permeates and illuminates one’s whole being, and transforms man and Torah into a singular entity. Every action, therefore, becomes a vital reality. This consciousness is tested and verified by the concrete realization of the premise that the purpose of wisdom is that it inspire and lead to an application of teshuva (return to our divine roots) and the practice of good deeds.3

That is not what “oil of Torah” means (see the Gra). Whenever you hear “X is a tool for Y”, you know X is not the highest end…

The perorations:

The sterile type of life and “scholarship” of the “donkey loaded with books” unfortunately, is quite symptomatic of the modern age and its method of alleged rational inquiry, of “logical positivism” and its atomizing games of linguistic analysis. The mystical dimension forcefully counters this and bears a pervasive message of special relevance to modern man. With this message we are able to extricate ourselves from the contemporary mind-and soul-polluting forces that threaten to stifle us, and to find ourselves. For the mystical aspect of the Torah is the conduit connecting us to ultimate reality. It is the depth of man’s soul calling unto the profound depth of the Universal Soul to find and absorb itself therein.4 Thus it brings forth and establishes the ultimate ideal of unity, of oneness, on all levels.

Anytime a Lubavitcher writes a Capitalized “Universal”, I avert my eyes, lest he is writing of their theological corruptions (I’m still being polite). “To find and absorb itself therein” is correct, if the atom vanishes, not if he deifies himself; the very opposite (and most minds speedily confuse the two). And Wittgenstein is still correct: “Whereof one cannot speak, thereof one must be silent”! There is a way “to ultimate reality; not gnosis but accepting the yoke of the commandments (stop calling them “Mitzvos” around certain people) “like a good soldier”, as Lubavitchers used to say.

[From “The Mystical Dimension”, (vol. I, p. 41- 45)]

FOOTNOTES
1. Chovot HalevovotAvodat Elokim, ch. 4 – Yoma 72b provides another source for negative possibilities from an exclusive study of the exoteric part of Torah. On the other hand, a study of pnimiut Hatorah precludes that dichotomy, because the ma’or of the Torah restores to the right path and goodness (YerushalmiChagigah 1:7; Eichah RabbaPetichta:2). See R. Menachem M. Schneerson of Lubavitch, Likutei Sichot, vol. IV, pp. 1039 and 1118.
2. R. Eleazar Azkari, Sefer Chareidim, Mitzval Hateshuvah, ch.7; Or Hachayim on Numbers 27:23Likutei Torah, Bechukotai, p. 45c
3. Berachot 17a. Cr. Likutei Torah, Shemini Atzeret, p. 85a
4. See Psalms 42:8, interpreted in Sefer Halikutim al Tanach, Toldot (p.72) and Tissa (p. 197). Cf. Zohar III:73a, and Likutei Sichot, vol. V, p. 302.
I don’t like his footnotes either.

A Guide to Personal Holiness in the Workplace

How can I start being Shomer Habris? 

The fact that you have the interest shows that you have already started the battle.

There are a number of things that you need to know in order to succeed. The first is to fully acknowledge the situation.

Acknowledge that being Shomer Habris in thought, speech and action is the largest test that a man is placed through in this world. Also, acknowledge that although it is a very hard test it is still very possible to win. There are many people that have been Shomer Habris in the past and that are Shomer Habris today. I personally can give witness to many people today that are Shomer Habris. Amongst them people that are single, people that are married, people living in Tzfat and people going into Manhattan every day, traveling on the subway system and working in mixed offices.

Acknowledge that it is very possible to be Shomer Habris especially at the basic level of refraining from doing physical sins. However, to a person that is in a situation of impurity, it might seem like it is totally impossible to stop.

It will seem like it is beyond human ability to be Shomer Habris. This person must do two things. First, he must begin weakening his Yetser Hara. Second, he must start building merit and protection.

Part 1

Weakening the Yetser Hara

First of all, a person should temporarily ignore the severity and the punishment of the sin. He must remember that Hashem has infinite mercy and is always ready to accept those who wish to return to him. As far as rectifying the past forget about that for now, just focus on the current situation when at a later situation you will have more energy then you should consider doing Tikunim for the past. The whole trick of Avodas Hashem is, when you have energy you do, when you are low on energy you contract yourself and remain still using all remaining energy to refrain from falling, waiting for more energy so you can hit again. Remember the mighty warrior is not the person who can strike a onetime hit but rather a person who knows the techniques of battle and can fight consistently little by little until he reaches the day that he has completely destroyed his enemy. This person will rise up and continue no matter what falls and obstacles are placed in his path.

The way the Yeter Harah works is very simple. At a general point in time when a person is in control of his mind, he has almost no control over him. He then draws him in little by little, it could start by having him look at an impure picture, bring an impure thought into his head or any number of ways. He then draws him more and more into his trap. In the beginning a person can still pull back however as a person transcends into the impurity he starts losing his will to pull back little by little until he reaches a point where he thinks that it is impossible to stop.

The Solution to this is very simple although very hard to carry out. It is, to stop it before it starts to demolish it before it begins. The second a person feels this Yetser Hara gaining even the smallest entrance over him he must run and do everything in his power to get away. Even if he feels that he is miles away from committing the actual sin.

The only way a person can do this is to start making boundaries. Every person must analyze where he falls and start chopping away at those places. Not at the sin itself but ten steps in front of the sin.

There is also another issue that even when a person does all within his might not to go next to a sin there are going to be times when he will be tested and he will be placed in a situation against his will. In this place he must make use of extremely drastic methods to escape at all costs. It is here that he proves that he is truly Shomer Habris. It is here that he receives his biggest Tikun when he is forcibly passed through those same situations in the same constricted mind frame and he emerges victorious.

However, all this is very hard as a person will be placed through thousands of tests which he must pass. He must vanquish impure thoughts from his mind hundreds of thousands of times until he is victorious. When a person looks at all this it seems humanly impossible to do. This is because he is not aware of the important fact that the more times he wins the stronger he becomes. Every time he passes a test the easier it becomes to pass it again. There will be a point when he will look back and the tests that loomed in front of him like huge dark mountains will suddenly appear to be nothing more than little pebbles. He will reach a time that he will laugh at the past weaknesses that controlled his life.

However, even if a person accepts this fact as being true since he cannot actively experience it, it is extremely difficult for him to act upon it and use it as a motivation to fight such a huge battle.

A person who wishes to become Shomer Habris must do the following tune out everything else and say I am going to try being Shomer Habris for the next week after that whatever happens, happens. After that week a person must start again if a person falls on the way it is not a big deal he should forget about it immediately he just has to refocus his energies and start again. Every time a person wins it becomes easier and easier until he has totally left his previous actions and has gained full control over himself.

Part 2

Building protection

A person may say the following “It is very good if I was living in Tzfat or Meah Shearim studying Torah all day, then it would be very easy to be Shomer Habris. Unfortunately, life has placed me in a situation that I have to travel to the City every day and work in a mixed office with non-Jewish and unreligious coworkers. I also hardly have time to pray and study Torah. I am being exposed to the Klipos the whole day, how is it possible to be Shomer Habris?

The answer is the following the more impure a person is, the more hold the Klipot have over him. The more Tikunim a person does the more protection he has and the less of a hold the Klipot have over him. If a person builds protection, then when he is forced to go into the domain of the Klipot they have little grasp over him and he can pass through unaffected. Just like a small child who has not yet defiled himself can walk through the streets and is much less affected, so to a person who does Tikunim can walk through the streets and has much protection from the Klipot, impure thoughts and desires.

The basic trick is to build armor in advance. To do Tikunim before you need them, to seal the holes before the Klipot can gain a hold. Tikunim is a double term, it helps rectify the past and build protection in the future. Even a person that is fully aware that he is still in the possession of the Sitra Achra and that he is still falling to the sins of Pgam Habris, Heaven Forbid, he should also do the Tikunim. Doing the Tikunim will remove a large percent of his impure thoughts and desires and will make it much easier for him to be Shomer Habris. In addition, they will also send him much protection from heaven and save him from even entering into a situation where he may stumble. A person who does Tikunim if he ever Heaven Forbid enters a situation where he is about to stumble, suddenly all the Tikunim that he has done in the past will rise up to his aid and save him.

The first thing a person has to do is mark a separation between the things he is forced to do and the things that he does maliciously, whether out of irresponsible planning or from the fact that he is not willing to make some simple sacrifices to become Shomer Habris. A person can only expect to be protected in situations that he must enter, not in situations that he enters from his own will and for his personal desires. In addition, a person is required to make some sacrifices. If a person places himself in a situation because not doing so would have caused him some slight discomfort, that is not called a situation that he was forced to enter.

Let us give some examples a person might be forced to work in the city. He might be forced to travel on the subway/railroad system. He might be forced to work a mixed office and talk to women. He might be forced to use the internet for work related reasons. He might feel forced to keep up to date on current events. However, there is absolutely no excuse in the world for ever watching a movie. For ever reading any non-work related books. For ever watching TV. For ever going to impure places for any social activity. For ever socializing with women for non-work related reasons. If a person is not willing to sacrifice these activities, only because at times it will place him in a situation of discomfort, then the fault is his. It his own fault if he stumbles to the sins of Pgam Habris and he will pay the price.

[Let us just add two things here. The first is, if a person carefully plans out his life and also if he prays to Hashem then he can avoid most of the situations that we listed above of being “forced to do”. The second thing is that even if a person still actively does the things we stated above that should not be done, or that he made a judgment upon himself that if he changes his whole life in one minute he will surely fall after a short period of time. He consistently removes himself from the Klipah little by little until he has total stopped. Both these people should also do Tikunim since they will help him out.]

Part 3 

The Tikunim

Listed here are a number of Tikunim and Halochos that are very easy to do and everyone can do them.

1 – Mikvah
A person who works in the city should try to go to the Mikvah every morning. If he does so for a number of weeks he will easily notice a definite change. A large percent of his temptations will simply disappear. Everyone should make an extreme effort to go to the Mikvah on Erev Shabbot and Erev Hachag. A person who sees Keri or was Heaven Forbid Pogem Habris in any way should go to the Mikvah as soon as possible. It is stated in the writings of the Holy ARI that the mark remains on a person’s forehead until he immerses in the Mikvah, and anyone who has guarded his eyes can see this openly.

2 – Tikun Hklali

It is extremely advisable to recite the Tikun Haklali every day, even if a person does not manage to concentrate as he recites it. Just uttering the words is a large Tikun. Everyone should recite the Tikun Klali at least once a week. A person who sees Keri or was Heaven Forbid Pogem Habris in any way must do everything and anything within his power to say Tikun Haklali that day.

3 – Torah

Everyone must have some time set aside every day to study Torah. If a person has contaminated his mind and lost his power of concentration then he should learn other parts of Torah, it is not necessary to only study Talmud. A person should study Mishnah, Navi, Medrash, Musar or Chumash. If a person has the time he should try to study from all parts of the Torah every day, either with Chok Liyisroel or go at his own pace. If a person must travel on the subway or railroad and he finds that the impurity of the Klipot does not allow him to concentrate on any part of Torah then he should read stories about the Holy Tzadikim.

4 – Hisbodedut

A person should try to do Hisbodedute every day. He should find a time and a place where he can talk and pray to Hashem in his own words. He can do this about any topic he like but he may use the opportunity to beg Hashem to help him be Shomer Habris. Everyone should try to set aside at least a half an hour a week to do Hisbodedut.

5 – Nitilat Ydaim

A person should be extremely careful to always wash his hands in the morning and after he leaves the bathroom according to Halacha. That is to wash each hand three times from a washing cup, first right hand then left hand and then back to right hand and so forth. In the morning he should try not to walk four amos before he washes his hands. He can keep a washing cup covered by a bowl next to his bed and wash in the morning. A person should try to wash outside the bathroom. In a situation with no other options, he should wash even with the bathroom sink and without a cup. This is very important for when a person goes to the bathroom a spirit of impurity hangs over him, which he removes by washing his hands. Impure thoughts and temptations only have a place in his mind according to his impurity. Also, a person should spend the least amount of time in the bathroom/shower as possible. Both because of the impurity and because it is a place of temptation. Never read any magazines or newspapers in the bathroom since they all contain impure information buried somewhere inside of them and you are giving them an opening to start.

From TrueKabbalah.org, here.

Private Roads in Action: Hong Kong

Demystifying privatization: Private roads and sidewalks in Hong Kong

According to The Heritage Foundation, Hong Kong is and has been, for the last 25 years, an exponent of and exemplary model for economic freedom. Despite its urban development regulation, property rights infringement, state monopolies, the erosion of the Rule of Law, or its unequal and overwhelming labour regulations, Hong Kong can still be proud of one of the most thoroughly discussed aspects of classical liberalism: private roads and sidewalks. After offering a brief explanation of the different alternatives to road-socialization, I will focus on one specific problem in the privatization of roads: the idea, vox popul, that if we privatize common areas such as roads, sidewalks, or parks, they would not be free anymore, but shall become expensive, unaffordable or unavailable.

Who Will Built the Roads?

Roads, sidewalks, and other common areas are a scarce resource and, thus, the best way to distribute and manage them is, libertarianism tells us, the free market. There is a psychological element behind the idea that government intervention is a must when we are dealing with complex, important, or basis services, such as healthcare, education or, indeed, roads. Our emotional response is a compelling, dire need for a superior and abstract entity who can magically manage that complexity: the government. But the government is not, however, an abstract entity –it is in fact a collection, so to speak, of highly unskilled individuals without incentives to do their job properly. Therefore, government management often results in absolute failure and waste of resources. As it is the case with traffic jams: a collision between the private production of vehicles and the public management of roads.

But without government, who will build the roads? This endless question has a simple answer: the same people who are building them now: contracting companies hired by the government. The government does not build roads. The government, in fact, builds nothing. The government only steals half of our salary to redistribute it inefficiently to provide us with things that we barely use or that, once we use them, they won’t work properly. The fantasy perpetuates itself like a self-fulfilling prophecy under the excuse that “it has always been like that” and, if things were to change, it will lead to complete chaos.

But when abolitionist tried to get rid of slavery in the United States, some people used the same excuse: Who will pick the cotton when we free the slaves? Indeed, many were convinced that, without slaves picking cotton, clothes would not get made, families and companies would go bankrupt, and kids would freeze to death (Rothbard 2006; Samuels 2015, 191-193). But after the abolition of slavery new incentives led to the development of new technologies to pick the cotton. As happened with slavery, we are unable to predict what kind of roads and how necessary roads will be in a world without public roads, because government intervention kills any possible incentive to such development. Without free market and the incentives it creates we cannot predict the development of new technologies.

There are, however, many alternatives to government intervention based on the private sector, from the threshold pledge system described here, to roads built by companies who need logistic services, roads for their employers, and roads for their customers. In Hong Kong it is not hard to see “Private Roads” in all neighborhoods, working as open malls where people and cars can freely come and go without restrictions –a variation of the “center model” proposed by Block (2009, 16).

Continue reading

From Confucian Libertarian, here.