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The default permisions for openldap (assuming here since you didn't mention) are for all users to have read permission only. The only user who is able to do an add by default is the manager account which you would have to specify specifically with your command line each time. So even if you are running as the machine's root, that user has no special permissions with LDAP to use ldapadd unless you go out of your way to give it them (which is probably a bad idea).
You might look at this project for ldap account management. It is easy to use and I really like the way it sets up the user accounts. Much easier than doing everything by hand.
What happens when you do something like
ldapsearch -x '(ObjectClass=*)'
It will probably return no records, but it ought to let you connect.
Also if you specify the host, it is possible that it is sending traffic outside your box. Do you have a firewall on that box? You might try without the -h (you shouldn't need it on the local box anyway).
Also, double check and make sure you don't have any of the security turned on (TLS, ssl, SASL, whatever). Get it working locally without the security turned on (just take it off the network if you are concerned about security), then play with the security settings later.
Also, you do have to add the base DN and such first before you add user information, though that is a different error message