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Individual Rights

Discussion in 'House of Debates' started by GenSeneca, Jun 24, 2014.

  1. GBFan

    GBFan Well-Known Member

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    In order to be 'collective' rights, there must be a sacrifice of individual rights, as you claim.

    But, the purchase of services, whether provided by private industry or by the government, does not necessarily infringe on your collective rights. I'm curious, what 'individual' right suffered as a result of highways?
     
  2. GenSeneca

    GenSeneca Well-Known Member

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    Individual Rights do not conflict with reality. A government that can only maintain itself, and worse yet has the ability to grow, through the violation of individual rights, is a tyrannical machine that operates in direct conflict with reality. It is impossible to perpetuate the existence of such a rights violating machine, it will inevitably collapse into what you will finally recognize as a tyranny.

    But that's actual reality... If you're talking political realities, i.e. serious lack of political support for Individual Rights, then it does seem impossible. Collectivism dominates politics, the fact that you're convinced it's impossible for a government to exist without violating rights is some measure of proof.
    You seem to think we "give up" rights to form a government... this suggests you do not see government as the source of our rights, so that's a good start.
    This leaves two obvious options for the source, but lets consider the source of our Individual Rights as irrelevant for now (unless you actually do think government is the source). Can we at least agree that our unalienable rights do exist?

    Next, "All men are created equal" - Every individual is created equal, with certain unalienable rights (that you've hopefully agreed do exist). Each of us is, therefore, created with unalienable rights equal to those of every single other individual. Are we still in agreement?

    Lastly... No individual is created with, and therefore can never acquire, an unalienable right to violate the rights of others.

    If we're still in agreement...

    My Question to you: How does government acquire the ability to violate the rights of others?

    Let me try something different...

    Every individual is created with unalienable rights equal to the rights of every other individual.
    Governments are instituted to secure our rights as individuals.
    Protecting the rights of the individual is the purpose for the existence of government.
    Government has no rights of it's own. It is not created with the "right" to violate the rights of others.
    Individuals do not "give up" their rights in order to grant government power.
    Government power is a unification, not a sacrifice, of our rights as individuals (military/police/courts=self defense).
    Government is granted a monopoly on the legal use of force (to effectively exercise it's purpose for existence).
    Governments are instituted by, and entirely comprised of, individuals.
    Voting majorities are entirely comprised of individuals.
    No individual has the right to violate the rights of others.
    No voting majority (which is just a number of individuals) has a right to violate the rights of others.
    No government has the "right" to violate to violate individual rights. (and doing so would violate it's purpose for existence)

    So, where does that "right" come from?
     
  3. GenSeneca

    GenSeneca Well-Known Member

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    With the exceptions of police, military, and courts, yes... You're violating the rights of individuals by forcing them to pay for things outside the purview of government. Protecting the individual rights of it's citizens is the purpose for a government's existence. Government is granted a monopoly on the legal use of force. As such, it's scope of power is limited to it's purpose for existence.

    While you may believe the benefit to society that a public school represents is worth violating the rights of others... You, as an individual, have no such right. You the individual, even as part of a voting majority, still have no such right. Government, a collective of individuals all with equal rights, also does not have the right to violate the rights of others.

    Unjustly using government's monopoly on the legal use of force, to make others pay for a public school, is an abuse of government power. Not only is government being used by individuals to violate the rights of other individuals, doing so violates the very purpose for government's existence.
    You say "original meaning" but I think you're actual concern is the "original application" of the subject matter. I would "go back" to exactly what I've been saying all along... Every individual is created equal to all other individuals, with the exact same unalienable rights as every other individual. There is no right to violate the rights of others. In order for individuals to ensure their rights as individuals are protected, they agree to form a government, whose sole purpose for existence is the protection of the individual rights of it's citizens.
     
  4. GenSeneca

    GenSeneca Well-Known Member

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    Concomitant, nice word! I had to look it up in my dress wearing coward of a dictionary... If you're using "arbitrarily" to mean everything beyond the scope of protecting our rights as individuals, then I agree with that part and agree it is a violation of individual rights. No matter what the supposed "return" may be, the true cost of allowing people to abuse government power is the total loss of our equality and our individual rights. That is too high a cost.

    Government, and the general public itself, consists primarily of individuals who do not support individual rights. What we have now is a collectivist democracy, where the "right" to legally use force against others is shared by two parties, but decided by a majority vote.

    No one is gobbling up power... all the power held by the individual has already been consumed. That's not power they're dining on, they're ravenously picking the scraps off a dead carcass before their turn at the candy jar is over.

    Very well said! (y)
     
  5. GenSeneca

    GenSeneca Well-Known Member

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    You must sacrifice all individual rights, in perpetuity.
    Individual rights had been sacrificed to the collective long before that happened.
     
  6. dogtowner

    dogtowner Moderator Staff Member

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    Do i benefit from a highway (or canal) in your area or you for one in mine ? In some coll3ctive sense yes but that my money th3 government wants that i will almost certainly never benefit from.
     
  7. GBFan

    GBFan Well-Known Member

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    Now, you're discussing fees, not individual rights .. you didn't lose any 'rights', none were impacted ... you just agreed, by your vote, to accept a corrupt and inept government program
     
  8. dogtowner

    dogtowner Moderator Staff Member

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    Well we dont have any governnet that has lasted so thats as likely a reason as any.

    Ok

    ok

    You make a broad assumption in what the role of government is. While the founding documents of ours talk a good game and we may hav even stuck sort of close to them for a short while we did not follow them in practce.
    I also dont govt has a right to do anything but is granted/given/lent power to do things that infringe upon our rigjts by us as a sort of contract between us and it.
    judt my 2cents
     
  9. dogtowner

    dogtowner Moderator Staff Member

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    Pkease note this is gens theory not mine. Just opetating in his framework.
     
  10. GenSeneca

    GenSeneca Well-Known Member

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    I disagree on both accounts. Being forced to pay for anything that isn't vital to government's job of protecting your rights as an individual, is a violation of them.

    Secondly, as for considering one's vote in favor of a gov policy or program to be an act of accepting that policy or program, I kinda disagree... If Dog votes in favor of a gov policy or program, he agrees with it... If a voting majority favors it, they agree with it... But no individual has the "right" to force those who do not agree, (or cannot agree due to the fact they haven't even been born yet) to accept it anyway.

    If individuals agree with something, and know they cannot force others to support it, only then can they truly accept that it's up to only those who do agree with the program or policy to fund it.

    Imagine having mandatory and discretionary taxation... We all pay some form of equal (that means free of discrimination) form of taxation to cover the police, military, and courts - that taxation would be mandatory because those things exist to secure, protect, and defend our rights as Individuals. Every single other government program or policy, is optional. If you agree, you can pay additional taxes to fund whatever it is. What you cannot do, is violate the rights of others as a means of funding your pet project.

    Imagine the helter skelter of that tax policy... Every special interest collective would be out for blood. Politicians would certainly learn a hard, fast lesson on the difference between leading a nation, and ruling it. How many of you would voluntarily pay additional taxes to fund sacred cows you'd like to see put out to pasture? I'm guessing not a whole lot of you... I think many of you would no longer fund programs you agree with, more than would actually admit it anyway.

    I'd kick in for NASA. While their role in government is not at all necessary to protecting our rights as individuals, I do see it as one of the government programs that is worth funding. While their budget could take a serious hit if Americans were ever given the actual freedom of choice, if they actually had a Right to decide whether or not to fund NASA, I would be even more proud to support it. With all that I'd save by not being forced to pay for other BS, I could provide NASA a handsome bonus to what they had been getting from me. Others may, or may not, do the same with the programs they strongly agree with, so some will survive, some will fail, but that is the cost of government finally conforming to reality.
     
  11. GBFan

    GBFan Well-Known Member

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    There is a fundamental error in your thought process ... one committed by many.

    You are assigning the government an entity position. While this would be correct in most government types, it is not true in a representative republic. The government is a collection of the duties/responsibilities we have given to them. In other words, in a representative republic, the government cannot take unilateral action to usurp our rights. Only the people who are in those positions can, and we have sufficient safeguards built in to stop that if we choose to do so.

    In addition, you sometimes align those we elected to represent us as being part of the 'government', and at other times, our representatives responsible for implementing our wishes. This, in fact, should be true. It is a triad - we 'hire' Congress to implement our individual rights and goals for the betterment of the whole. We have not relinquished those rights - we have assigned management of them to Congress. Congress, in turn, figures out the best way to implement that collection of individual rights, and the executive branch is charged with implementing our individual rights in the manner prescribed by our duly hired representatives.

    Now, all of that is fine, well, and good in the high minded philosophical discussion of sociopolitical mechanisms. But, in the real world, it is a sad reality that we have relinquished OUR responsibility in that triad. WE have allowed the Congress to implement our individual rights in a manner THEY think best, rather than as directed by us. In addition, we have allowed the Congress to abdicate on its responsibility to direct the executive branch by defining its mission. We have abdicated our responsibility as the managers of the process, and have allowed our representatives to usurp our responsibility - in short, the inmates are running the asylum.

    If, as you say, your individual rights stop at my nose, then it is clear that we hire Congress to manage those interfaces. Simply, I can do anything I damn well please inside my box, but when my actions intrude on your box, then an outside arbiter is required to resolve the conflict. Thomas Jefferson called our form of freedom and government as the "mutually competing self interests".

    However, we have allowed the 'government' to intrude into our private boxes and dictate what we may or may not do in certain activities that do not affect somebody else's box. THAT is the erosion of our individual rights ... but, frankly, you will be hard pressed to find such a case. For example, I am adamantly pro-life. I should, and am, allowed to express my opinion to anyone and everyone I so choose -- as long as it doesn't interfere in someone else's box (for the immature, not THAT box). However, I should not be allowed to prevent someone from going into an abortion mill (oops, Planned Parenthood) because, by doing that, I have interfered with their freedom. Makes perfect sense, doesn't it?

    Now, apply the same logic to the baker's refusal to make cakes for gay marriages. By forcing the baker to make them, the pro-gay marriage groups (by using the government) have interfered in the baker's box. His individual rights have been violated. Frankly, this is a misinterpretation of law that, I strongly suspect, will be overturned in the next 15 years.

    In summary, individual rights can only be applicable within the individual box. When managing the interface between to free-thinking entities, care must be taken not to violate one person's individual rights in favor of another. To claim that one person's 'individual rights' have been violated because he is required to pay gas tax does not do credit to the very real threat to our individual rights today.
     
  12. GenSeneca

    GenSeneca Well-Known Member

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    Please, specify...

    Protecting the individual rights of it's citizens is the only moral purpose for a government to exist.

    Is that what you think is a broad assumption, or something else?

    Slow down while typing... I really can't be sure what you were trying to say there.

    Government is created by individuals. All individuals have equal rights. Government can only exercise rights held by the individual. Government cannot exercise the "right" to violate the rights of others, because no individual has such a "right", it doesn't exist. The Individual Right of Self Defense - the moral Right to defend one's self from those who initiate force against you - takes 3 forms in when expressed in government:

    The Military, to protect every individual American citizen from anyone outside our borders who initiates force against us .
    The Police, to protect individuals from those who initiate the use of force domestically.
    The Courts, to set objective standards for punishing citizens who violate the rights of others.

    As for the social contract, that's some collectivist nonsense. It's usually some huckster trying to convince people that a specious social contract exists between citizens and government, in a futile effort to explain how the people who voted for that specific POS gov program or policy so long ago, are the ones who actually signed that contract... But somehow in doing so, they also managed to sign your name and mine, even though neither of us were even born yet.... Some dead guy agreed to it eons ago, and you have some specious obligation to ignore the abomination of rights it represents.

    You and I never got a choice, that choice was obliterated by voters, long since dead, who signed up not only themselves and their current generations, but all future generations as well. But the collectivist says we're just assumed to agree with the POS gov program or policy, since we haven't moved out of the country. That's how tolerant of dissent collectivists are... Agree, or GTFO... Reform? LOL! Collectivists don't know the meaning of the word... Unless it's preceded by the word "comprehensive", they instinctively know to agree with that kind of reform, since it always promises more of the same bad policy.

    Since Individual Rights are freedoms of action in a social context, the only "social contract" inherent to your rights as an individual, is agreeing to NOT violate the rights of others in the course of exercising your own rights. The shorter ways of saying that are more popular... Your rights end where mine begin... The Golden Rule of 'do unto others as you would have them do unto you'... This Individualist concept of rights, freedom, and liberty belonging to all individuals equally, hasn't been around as long as collectivism. But I think most people would sooner gravitate to one of those accurate approximations than any accurate one about collectivism; might makes right, discrimination is equality, slavery is freedom, war is peace, etc.
     
  13. GBFan

    GBFan Well-Known Member

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    God, I love it when we violently agree ....
     
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  14. GenSeneca

    GenSeneca Well-Known Member

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    I thought I was quite clear that "government" is an abstract concept, like a corporation, it's not an entity at all, but a collections of individuals.

    I think I've also been quite clear that "we" choose not to stop those violations... PLC likes his schools, Dog likes his highways... Everyone seems to have some program or policy they think is worth violating the rights of others.

    I would only disagree in that the only "right" given to government, is a monopoly on the legal use of force. All other "rights" exercised through the system of government, are rights held by the individuals exercising those rights as part of the government. It's true nobody needs to "give up" any rights for government to exist and function, but those rights cannot be assigned to anyone for management either. Rights are inalienable, non-transferable, and belong to all individuals equally.

    In the real world, our Individual Rights are no longer recognized by government. They don't have to be, we're a collectivist society. Majority rules, those in the minority can suck it up or GTFO.

    The police, to stop the violation of rights.
    The courts, to settle disputes and punish those who violate the rights of others.

    That doesn't make sense... Rights are freedoms of actions in a social context. What you're suggesting is that they only apply in the absence of a social context, while the individual is alone, that once there is more than one individual, some third individual needs to be there as a referee.

    Either there was a violation of rights or there was not, that's the most important detail. The degree of the violation is a secondary detail, one that should never be used as grounds for ignoring a violation of rights.
     
  15. dogtowner

    dogtowner Moderator Staff Member

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    Typing on a phone. Sorry.
    Yes you assume government requires a moral purpose. Im not too sure ive heard of one that does that ever. Certainly would be nice but human nature wont tolerate it. (Power corrupts and all).
    Sorry but i have trouble talking abstract theory that bears no semblence to real life.
     
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