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Debates Forum

Debates Forum

  1. 22 Mar '11 22:29
    I came across this writing at:

    http://www.walterblock.com/wp-content/uploads/publications/crimeofblackmail.htm

    The writer makes a libertarian argument for the legality of blackmail and considers some objections. Basically he argues that the linkage of two legal acts must be held to be legal.

    There is a significant distinction in law, between blackmail and extortion. Blackmail is the making of a threat to perform a legal, but damaging act, if the target of the threat does not provide some sort of inducement to refrain from performing the act. For example it is legal to request that someone give you $1000, and it is legal to disclose that someone is an illegal alien, but it is illegal to link the two by threatening that you will do the disclosure if the request is not honored. In extortion, the threatened act is illegal, such as burning down someone's business if they don't pay you.

    Do you think this libertarian case for the legality of blackmail is strong? Why or why not? It would be especially interesting to hear from people who are knowledgeable about Libertarianism who think blackmail should be/remain illegal.
  2. Standard member DeepThought
    Losing the Thread
    23 Mar '11 03:03
    Originally posted by JS357
    I came across this writing at:

    http://www.walterblock.com/wp-content/uploads/publications/crimeofblackmail.htm

    The writer makes a libertarian argument for the legality of blackmail and considers some objections. Basically he argues that the linkage of two legal acts must be held to be legal.

    There is a significant distinction in law, between blackmail ...[text shortened]... eople who are knowledgeable about Libertarianism who think blackmail should be/remain illegal.
    Suppose the person who committed this crime if found guilty in court. Should the judge take having been the victim of blackmail into account in the sentencing? The blackmailer is usurping the perogative of the court to decide on the penalty for the crime. The consequence of this argument is a weakening of the courts monopoly on retribution, so basically he may as well support feuding.

    Besides, it's a formal logical fallacy to think that because 2 things have a property that a third thing associated with them also has that property.
  3. Subscriber AThousandYoung
    Poor Filipov :,(
    23 Mar '11 03:55
    Should it be legal to make a contract promising to ignore someone's crime?