So, I’d thought I’d ask this here, as I’ve found the folks on this platform to be very knowledgeable about these sorts of debates:
I was watching a debate between the YouTuber “radical-reviewer” and a Scottish “Ancap”. In the debate, the “ancap” provides the following theoretical example to argue that collective property rights are a contradiction:
Suppose we take a river that is collectively owned collectively in a community consisting of two people: A & B. Both are equally affected by the river, and likewise are equally affected by any change in the river.
A wants a dam to be built in the river, and B doesn’t. Neither is willing to change their position, as there are only two, diametrically opposed outcomes to the conflict: either the dam is built, or it is not. No compromise via consensus is possible. Who wins the conflict?
The ancap makes the argument that this scenario effectively shows how collective/common ownership is an oxymoron: ownership of something is defined as having control over it; if A wins, and the dam is built, it shows that B does not have control, and ownership, over the river. Likewise, if B wins, and the dam isn’t built, it therefore goes that A does not have control, and therefore ownership, over the river. Either you have ownership, or you don’t. There is no in between.
The Ancap uses this to further his argument that exclusive property ownership is superior because it was adopted as a conflict avoiding norm.
I didn’t think “Radical Reviewer” provided a good answer to this scenario. And I find it to be a very serious critique of the concept of common property ownership, which is integral to libertarian communism. I ask this community, what is your response to this scenario, & how do we solve disputes where there are only two diametrically opposed outcomes?