Land of the Free?

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posted on Apr, 23 2004 @ 04:40 PM
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While I do admit that NZ seems to have glowing reports as far as freedom goes I would like to hear more about a couple points made in the article, like.......

"New Zealand's taking top honors in the civil liberties category is rather suspect, because the various items-free speech and press, freedom of assembly, equality before the law, an impartial judiciary, and a strong civil society that is independent of government-are either nonexistent or severely circumscribed. Men, for example, can be jailed under New Zealand's "human rights" legislation for criticising tribalists; the Minister of Justice has stated explicitly that there is one law for brown men and another law for white men; and a judge recently suspended the sentence of a man found guilty of shoving a 10 cm-long piece of wood up a woman's nose and into her brain, because the man thought he was under the influence of a curse."

While this could just be racist BS I would like to hear more before passing judgement. There are a few other points about property rights and such that to me seem to place them about the same as us as far as total freedom goes.

Although it does sound promising I would have to hear before handing it the crown




posted on Apr, 23 2004 @ 05:01 PM
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Originally posted by KayEm

Originally posted by Amuk

Originally posted by yergen

I totally agree with Vergen. Good points, Dude.

You can't start a post asking which country is the freest without considering ALL kinds of "freedoms". It seems to me that you asked the question in a general manner which everybody answered, but when they gave you their honest answers and you didn't like them, you tried to change the "rules" of the game.

Sorry, Amuk. But I put homelessness and poverty and the unemployment rate WAY above my own personal rights to own a gun. That's WAY at the bottom of my priority list, Dude.

You need to consider that just because you have always been able to get a job, everybody else might not because everybody else isn't YOU.

I think that when you see lines and lines of people applying for minimum wage jobs (just after 9/11, I had to compete with over 200 applicants for a minimum wage convenience store job), that it's totally unfair, not to mention CRUEL to sit there in your own comfy little set-up and call them "lazy" etc etc. This is Bull#. People WANT to have jobs and feed their families and live the good life. There is no way you can convince me that the homeless want to be exactly where they are. That's exactly the kind of conservative/republican bull# my mother spouts and I get so tired of hearing it mostly because it is so insensitive and unempathetic.

If this country was truly free their would jobs for EVERYONE that wanted one. You can't tell people they have to pay to EAT and not provide for them a job.

And I tell you this. It's the corporations to blame mostly for hard times like these when people can't get jobs. Why, you ask ? Because in hard times when so many are looking for work, corporations know they can be picky, choosy bastards and pretty much demand your firstborn before they hire you.

Don't blame the people. Blame the #ing corporations.







I never changed the rules I stated from the first I was talking about the freedom to DO THINGS not be babysitted by uncle sam.

Where in my post did I call the unemployed lazy? Some are and some arent, I just said that if you would not take a job because it was beneath you than starve, and I stand behind the statement.

And do you know how I got my comfee little set up?

The #ing government did not give it to me, I worked, sometimes two jobs to get it. I have a ninth grade education and raised a family of four kids so save me your sob stories. As far as being a Republican dont make me laugh, I am a Libertarian.


Since when is it the governments job to hold your little hand, feed you, give you a job and cover your eyes when life gets scary? You had to actually had to go out and compete for a job? BOO HOO.......welcome to the real world I have pumped # tanks, picked cotton, dumped guts in maggot infested trucks, worked in a slaughter house and fought a #ing war, all of which sucked but a Man does what he has too and doesnt stand on the side of the road whining for the government to help him.


You know in the history of the USA there was ONE group of people that were gaurented a job, a home, food, and medical care.


It was the slaves in the South.

According to your reasoning they were freer than we are now



posted on Apr, 23 2004 @ 05:03 PM
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Originally posted by topsecretombomb
land of the free!? yeah right they wont stop taking our maryjane! bas***** just make money off of it instead of giving us real freedom of choice!!



I agree


Fire it up



posted on Apr, 23 2004 @ 05:23 PM
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Blub
- I think those are some good reports to work with. If owning guns like a maniac is a good point/must is argueable


Political and Civil Rights:

www.freedomhouse.org...

Press freedom:

www.freedomhouse.org...



posted on Apr, 23 2004 @ 05:42 PM
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The property rights thing is easily dismissed as well. Because it's on a municipal level as opposed to a national level it's easily compared to anywhere else. For example, on my island in South Carolina we have a very strict building code especially on the beach. We must paint our houses natural colors and we can't leave our beach lights on at night because it confuses sea turtles. Sounds like that was basically the same thing.

The "free radical objectivists" who point out all the concerns about wasteful legislation are actually, seriously, debating the Human Rights Act and various things the government set up to prohibit discrimination. Something I personally agree with, even though I consider myself a libertarian/communitarian anarchist.

Since the time of the writing, a more socialist government is in power, and though this means liberal, drug laws are still issues the greens and libertarians are trying to correct. But I did notice that they said they were going after the people who actually grow the weed instead of those who use it. Although that's far from worthy of the effort in my opinion, it's a step closer to the right direction than we are here in the US with emphasis on busting the simple posession offenders. BUT, taxes are way up. This paragraph was basically about the problems in my mind. The civil rights the libertarians here are trying to debate are the enforcement of the Civil Rights Act. Thats racist and homophobic in my opinion, even though the lack of a Civil Rights Act would make the people of the country more free. Also keep in mind NZ's Bill of Rights is 200 years younger than the United States' so it takes some getting used to. It's only 24 years old.

These are just some easily debatable issues that the NZ libertarians bring up. Though I don't like to see the place become as regulated as it is over here, they are debating the wrong legislation. It's legislation that is working to ensure equality (under law) for the community, and legislation that's set up to preserve NZ's native natural resources. I don't see a problem with this, I do however see a problem with the heavy welfare impositions of the socialists and the high taxes. But who doesn't (who don't need it)?

This is a damn good thread Amuk, I'm learning a lot about my country that I wouldn't have otherwise bothered to think about. I was only 13 when I left so it's difficult to debate confidently with you on this, but it's stuff I need to know since I plan on making my decision on where to live within the next two years.

Oh yeah, Patriot Act. New Zealand doesn't have one. Muhahaha!


[Edited on 4-23-2004 by insite]



posted on Apr, 23 2004 @ 05:47 PM
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Originally posted by shoo
Blub
- I think those are some good reports to work with. If owning guns like a maniac is a good point/must is argueable


Political and Civil Rights:

www.freedomhouse.org...


This chart is debatable. I lived in Brunei for two years and could practically get away with murder. The police don't care about anything and it's a black market powerhouse. It got Political Liberties = 6/7 (which I agree with) and CL = 5/7 (which I disagree with). According to the laws of the land I guess you could say it's true, it's not free at all. But boy, living there, you could have fooled me. I remember cruising down the freeway at 240km/h because the police dont enforce the speed limit.



posted on Apr, 23 2004 @ 05:47 PM
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www.ncpa.org...


Heres some more info on economic freedom.


I agree that the patriot act and the war on drugs have done more to harm to America than the "reasons" they were passed and if we do not wake up and take back the government that one day it might be too late.


Am I correct in thinking NZ has a large Libertarian party?



posted on Apr, 23 2004 @ 05:50 PM
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O' Yeah

You never answered my question.

Is it illegal to critize the tribal leaders?



posted on Apr, 23 2004 @ 06:10 PM
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Originally posted by Amuk
O' Yeah

You never answered my question.

Is it illegal to critize the tribal leaders?


I honestly have no idea. We have a zero tolerance on hate here at Penn State so if I happened to say, "damn n*****, good at everything!" I'd probably be kicked out of school or at least very close to that. Why would you protest the right to make racist statements anyway, especially if you aren't even in a tribe? Free speech I suppose, but this infringes upon someones rights not to hear these statements. I agree that that is going pretty far if that truely is the case, I wouldn't support a law on the national books that says you can't criticize the tribal elders. But NZ is striving to enforce equality, and they'll enforce it until it sticks and people stop segregating themselves (dumb, I know since this is human nature).

I think this stems from Euro Kiwis resentment towards the enfocement of the Treaty of Waitangi (1840) that garuntees the native people certain assets. They can't even voice their resentment or something. The funny thing is most Maori (the natives) are members of the anarchists (I guess this stems from their way of life before europeans, somewhat like the American Indians). It's ironic that the anarchists have a party running for seats in the parliament firstly, and secondly it's ironic that the law against criticizing tribal leaders is protecting those who wouldn't want a law like that anyway.

To answer your question about the libertarian influence in government, I would say that New Zealand has a republican party that is gaining momentum (ACT), by republican I mean conservative on all issues but the conservative party that most people vote for is actually more libertarian (National). It's usually a battle between National and the Labour party (socialists), but you could say that the majority of people vote liberal one way or another. There's also a strong Green party, they actually have a rastafarian sitting in parliament representing Auckland, New Zealands biggest city, Nandor Tanczos. New Zealand is damn liberal and the drug laws should vanish within ten years. At least marijauna since NZ is such a huge producer and there is nothing they can do about the cultivation that has any effect. Methamphetamines have just hit NZ like a train so I suspect some laws on the books to toughen this up. But if they give me weed I'll be a happy camper.



posted on Apr, 23 2004 @ 06:22 PM
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Why would you protest the right to make racist statements anyway, especially if you aren't even in a tribe? Free speech I suppose, but this infringes upon someones rights not to hear these statements.



Free speach is not just the speach you want to hear......LOL

An example......


I might kick your ass for calling me an SOB

BUT..........

I would kick anyones ass that tried to stop you......LOL



posted on Apr, 23 2004 @ 06:36 PM
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Originally posted by Amuk
I might kick your ass for calling me an SOB

BUT..........

I would kick anyones ass that tried to stop you......LOL


Haha I can see that happening.

Me: "Hey Amuk you SOB"

You: "What bitch?"

Me: "I said you're a SOB"

My PC friend: "don't say that josh, that ain't right."

You: "what bitch?"

My PC friend: "I said he shouldn't call you a SOB."

You: *Smack*...*Smack*

Me: "Ow"

PC friend: "Aiee!!!"

lol, did you catch this:


Free speech I suppose, but this infringes upon someones rights not to hear these statements.


I tried to catch myself. I'm trying to make it look like my country could do no wrong but I'm trampling over my own beliefs in the process.


D

posted on Apr, 23 2004 @ 08:40 PM
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I'd just like to say that we in Australia have no Bill of Rights. Nothing that guarantees freedom of speech, religion etc. And it actually really annoys when people whinge about the government trying to gag someone about something cause the Aust. government is allowed to do that. It'st just that most people here in Australia take for granted the freedoms we do have.

Back onto topic. I'd also have to say that New Zealand is the most free country. The US and many of the Scandanavian countries are pretty much on the same level, but just currently the NZ government seem to be quite liberal.



posted on Apr, 23 2004 @ 09:09 PM
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Back onto topic. I'd also have to say that New Zealand is the most free country. The US and many of the Scandanavian countries are pretty much on the same level, but just currently the NZ government seem to be quite liberal.



That seems to be what my research has come up with is several countries with about the same level of freedom but in different ways



posted on Apr, 23 2004 @ 09:16 PM
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Originally posted by Amuk


I never changed the rules I stated from the first I was talking about the freedom to DO THINGS not be babysitted by uncle sam.

Where in my post did I call the unemployed lazy? Some are and some arent, I just said that if you would not take a job because it was beneath you than starve, and I stand behind the statement.

And do you know how I got my comfee little set up?

The #ing government did not give it to me, I worked, sometimes two jobs to get it. I have a ninth grade education and raised a family of four kids so save me your sob stories. As far as being a Republican dont make me laugh, I am a Libertarian.


Since when is it the governments job to hold your little hand, feed you, give you a job and cover your eyes when life gets scary? You had to actually had to go out and compete for a job? BOO HOO.......welcome to the real world I have pumped # tanks, picked cotton, dumped guts in maggot infested trucks, worked in a slaughter house and fought a #ing war, all of which sucked but a Man does what he has too and doesnt stand on the side of the road whining for the government to help him.


You know in the history of the USA there was ONE group of people that were gaurented a job, a home, food, and medical care.


It was the slaves in the South.

According to your reasoning they were freer than we are now


My bad. I guess I misunderstood. From the subject title and your original post I gathered that you wanted our opinions on which country was the freest. That to me meant "free" in any concievable way.

You didn't call the unemployed lazy, per se , but you did imply it with your statement "I have always been able to get a job" whether you are aware of it or not.

You stand behind your statement that people who don't take a job because they consider it "beneath them" should starve ? Well, I have to wonder exactly how many people in the US today actually feel that way and how many are urban legends in your head, Amuk. Most people I know will do just about anything to feed their families and keep roofs over their heads.

I find your comments seriously insensitive and unempathetic.

All I can say is that if this is the major speaking voice of America (and I'm beginning to think insensitivity is a virus in this country), then you can KEEP it. I'm outta here as soon as humanly possible. People like you rub my nerves raw and totally destroy what little faith in humanity I have left.

Thank you very much.

Lastly, I would appreciate it if you quit assuming things about me. I happen towork my ASS off on a daily basis and suffer things that I surely DO consider beneath me, but I DO them ONLY because I need the money.

I never said it was the governments job to do a goddamn thing. I merely stated that if we are expected to earn a living, that there ought to be jobs assured for ALL THAT WANT THEM.

All I asked is that you take a look at the greedy corporations and stop doing the sheep thing...which is picking on the easiest target: the working poor.

Why don't you expand those brain cells a little farther and try pointing the Blame Finger in another direction, Amuk ?



posted on Apr, 23 2004 @ 09:33 PM
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All I asked is that you take a look at the greedy corporations and stop doing the sheep thing...which is picking on the easiest target: the working poor.



I AM the working poor.....LOL

Believe it or not I am at least partualy with you on this one I think outsourcing will destroy our econemy if it is not stopped. Its not even a real good idea for the corporations, who will buy their goods if no one has a job?

Today 25% of the work force where I work was laid off.

This company has NEVER laid off ONE person in the 50+ years it has been open and today it laid off over 100.

I feel for these people but they will bounce back, they are good hardworking people and will make it. I am worried more about THESE people than those that wont work.

I am not talking about urban legands here I know from experience that many people have told me they needed a job and I have told them to come here that we were ALWAYS hiring and they would refuse, even though the work is fairly easy and the pay is not bad for this area.

Those are the people I DONT feel sorry for



posted on Apr, 24 2004 @ 04:19 AM
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www.worldaudit.org...
I am not surprised that Finland came out on top.
They are the 1st western nation to have a female leader (afaik). From what I understand most liberties and rights are there, although other scandinavian countries are a little more resistricted.
Really the list above (in the link) should read more like
the top 20 places where you probably won't be hassled over things that should generally be free. ie speech, assembly, defense of person, etc. I was however quite
surprised that the U.S. was at 14
who knew?!?



posted on Apr, 24 2004 @ 06:46 AM
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That list is kinda suspect to me


Germany ranks above America and you can be jailed there for what you name your dog........LOL



posted on Apr, 24 2004 @ 06:59 AM
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Name your dog Reefer, wait until one day you are looking for him cause he ran off. If the police ask why you are shouting Reefer, then tell them 'You are looking for Reefer.' lol



posted on Apr, 25 2004 @ 10:32 AM
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www.strike-the-root.com...

'They Hate Us Because of Our Freedom'

by Alfred A. Hambidge, Jr.

Whenever I hear “they hate us because of our freedom” or "because they hate our way of life" or some other such drivel, I don’t know whether to laugh or cry. If real people didn’t suffer the consequences of it, such ignorance would be amusing. But another annoying thing about statements like these is that they perpetuate the myth that we live in a land of freedom. The sad fact is, we are not free, and haven't been for a long, long time.

In They Thought They Were Free: The Germans, 1933-45, Milton Mayer wrote about how the German people kept believing they were still free while the Nazis were tightening their control and extending their power over every facet of life. At first people refused to see the obvious, because the infringements on their freedom were coming in small steps. Each of those small steps, on its own, seemed to be no big deal, nothing to rebel against. But by the time you could no longer ignore the big picture, it was too late. “Suddenly it all comes down, all at once. You see what you are, what you have done, or, more accurately, what you haven't done (for that was all that was required of most of us: that we do nothing) . . . You remember everything now, and your heart breaks. Too late. You are compromised beyond repair.” Remember, all the people had to do for all that to happen was--nothing. The same phenomenon is happening right here, right now, in the U.S. of A. It had been proceeding at a slower rate than 70 years ago in Germany , but now the pace quickens.

I know there are some who will say, “Wait a minute, fella. You’re going too far. The U.S. of A. is still a free country.” O.K., then. If you’re free, you should have no trouble doing something that people have done for time immemorial. Buy a cow, shelter and feed and care for it, milk it, and sell the milk. Go ahead, try it and see what happens. Come back and let us know how free you are to do such a simple thing, which has been done since the dawn of civilization.

Freedom is a state of being where an individual does not have to get permission in order to do something that harms no one else’s person or property. How many things can you do without getting some form of government permission? Can you build your house on your own property without obtaining government approval? Can you put a new room on your house? Or a new porch? Put in a new toilet? Or even put a shed in your backyard? If you are not free to make your home on your own property, you are not free.

Once you have that home, can you refuse to sell it to the government if they want to use your land for some other purpose? Can you make them go away simply by telling them, “I will not sell you my property, at any price!” If you are not free to choose if, when, how, to whom, and for how much you will sell your property, you are not free.

Can you drive a motor vehicle across this “free” country without someone in government approving of you as a driver? Or without getting government permission to use that vehicle on the roads? If you are not free to travel without permission, you are not free.

Can you buy a pistol without government permission? Can you drive across the country with it on your person, even if you have permission to drive a properly permitted vehicle? There’s a man, a good man from what I’ve heard, who got in trouble in Ohio for doing just that. And I’ll bet there are many more good people that I haven’t heard of who wound up in similar trouble. Let’s remind them how free they are. Could anyone even ride a horse cross-country, with an old Winchester rifle in a scabbard, without being hassled? If you are not free to have a firearm at hand for self-defense, no matter where you go, you are not free.

Are you free to say to the government, “I don’t like your retirement plan; therefore, I will no longer pay for it?” Can you, without penalty, tell the government that you will no longer pay for subsidies, for regulations, for wars, for empire, or for any activities that you disapprove? If you are not free to refuse to pay for things that you do not want, you are not free.

If the government decides it needs more troops to build and maintain its empire, can you refuse to go if it calls for you? Will they leave you alone if you tell them you won’t kill and die for them? Can you simply ignore the draft, without consequence? Can you refuse to be a conscripted slave? If you are not free to tell the government “Hell no, I won’t go!” you are not free.

Can you open a business, like a simple barbershop, without government permission? Or how about a bakery? A diner? A hot dog stand? A gun shop? It’s been said that before we invaded Iraq , there were more gun shops in Baghdad than in Washington D.C. Can you wire or plumb or fix TVs or cars without a government license? If you’re not free to make a living without getting permission, you are not free.

And once you have government approval to open a restaurant or bar, are you free to decide what people may do within your business? Can you choose whether or not they may smoke on the premises? Are you free to invite them to light up and enjoy a cigarette, a cigar, or a pipe with their drink, or after their meal? If you are not free to decide what people may or may not do on your property or within your business, you are not free.

Are you free to smoke a joint? Are you free to hire someone to help you satisfy a physical urge? You can do both in the same afternoon in Amsterdam . I haven’t heard of anybody attacking the Dutch because of their freedom. If you are not free to entertain your mind and body in any way that does not harm another, with anyone who is willing, you are not free.

Can you undergo any medical treatment you think is in your best interest? Can you use whatever drug you deem appropriate for your condition? Can you even get some marijuana to help you avoid nausea so you can keep your meds from coming back up? Can you get it just to feel a little better for a little while? If you are not free to pursue any treatment or use any substance you think might help you obtain, regain, or retain your health, you are not free.

Are you able to criticize political candidates by name? A week before the next election or primary, place a newspaper or TV or magazine or radio ad criticizing a candidate. Let us know how you fare. The Supreme Court says it’s okay to make that a crime. If you are not free to talk about politicians at any time, at any place, by any means, in any form, you are not free.

Can you take your children out of a government or conventional private school setting, without explaining to some bureaucrat how you plan to educate them? Can you homeschool them without getting government approval of your lesson plans? Can you tell everyone to buzz off, that it’s none of their business how or if you educate your kids? If you are not free to teach your children what you want, where you want, when you want, and how you want, you are not free.

So, let’s reiterate. You need government permission to make your home, travel, earn a living, defend yourself, obtain medical treatment, and educate your children. You will never get government approval for many of those things in many places. You will never get government permission to entertain your mind and body in unapproved ways. At certain times, you cannot criticize those who decide who and what gets approved. You must sell your property to the government if they want it, and you must kill and die for them if they tell you to. And you have no choice but to pay for it all anyway, whether you like it or not.

And still, we think we are free.



posted on Apr, 25 2004 @ 11:23 AM
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Ninjorp


You bring up several good points but I would like to say that I could and have bought a cow, built a room on my house, built a building on my land, started not one but several bussiness, and only ONE gun I own is regestered and I own SEVERAL, and did not ask the government for permission for ANY except for the gun I carry and for years it was not regestered either. In other words I have been free to do ALL these things you say I cannot do in America.


I agree with a lot of what you say in that freedom could be a lot more free but the question was not are we REALLY free but WHERE is freer?

I think we are among the freest of countries several points have been made about NZ being freer but my research into it seems to be about the same depending on a few questions unanswered but at LEAST as free as us.

Also several European Countries seem to be about the same level although freedom is in different ways so kinda hard to compare.


The question about are we free? I would have to say no but no one else is either it just a matter of who is the least of a slave.......LOL

[Edited on 25-4-2004 by Amuk]





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