Friday, July 28, 2006

The Road to Hell is paved with Good Intentions

The Individualist Journal

“The Road to Hell is paved with Good Intentions”

Rights in a Modern Society:

Every government will abuse its power. Libertarianism holds the key to ending the power of an illegitimate and immoral government’s power over individuals. The rights of citizens are constantly violated by over-regulation. In all situations the powers of the government to invade your private life can be seen. The greatest example of this violation is the use of force and corrosion against citizens to help the needy, pay for public goods and finance social security. If one does not voluntarily agree to share one's wealth in this way, the mere fact that one reaps a benefit from the services does not, on libertarian grounds, generate an enforceable duty to pay one's fair share.

In the modern welfare state we deal with these grievous violations. We are told that these uses of force and corrosion are acceptable and the restrictions that are placed on our freedom to engage in activities that do not violate anyone’s rights are wrong. We are not only restricted from exercising our freedom but encouraged to use agents of the state to enforce our rights rather than relying on our own abilities to do so. Although most states recognize a right to use force in self-defense, few states recognize a legal right to forcibly extract compensation from, or punish, a person who has violated one's rights. The state may punish those who attempt to impose the relevant rectification—even if the private citizens impose the very same rectification that the state would impose. One can argue that each individual has the right to enforce and protect his rights in a manner he/she sees fit. The objection is not that the state can enforce those rights (if asked) but that the agents of the state prevent citizens from enforcing their own rights.

1 comment:

Brainpolice said...

Good thoughts. I always thought along the lines of "good intentions have unintended consequences".