Do we have a duty to help the poor? How do we quantify that?
(02-02-2012, 10:14 PM)Micawber Wrote: The State should not enforce morality per se; the State should perform the functions for which it was duly empowered and no more; one of those is the protection of life from wrongful death.

And yet we have no problem with the state having laws against sodomy.  Or prohibiting the practice of false religions.

Quote:Charity cannot be peformed by proxy; Christ implored us to care for the poor, etc - not create massively powerful bureaucracies to feed off the taxpayer while they pretend to help the less fortunate, and in fact create more poverty, etc.  To paraphrase Rep Paul Ryan, nothing ever prescriptively devised by man for the purpose of reducing poverty/misery, etc., comes even remotely close to the success that the market economy and limited government has had in reducing poverty, increasing access to opportunitites, etc.

As I alluded to in my previous post, this point is obviously highly disputed.  Do you know where I could actually look at sources for this?

Quote:By definition they cannot be a right; Marxists/socialists/collectivists have tried to appropriate this sort of language to mean the exact opposite of what it is.  You cannot have a positive "right" to someone else's property.

That was my thought as well, but that's why I asked about whether the poor have a right to the food of a rich man man who hoards it, when they have no means of working for it themselves, though they are willing.

Quote:If we care about the rule of law, the government is only justified in assuming powers that it has actually been granted.  Collecting taxes towards those ends is part of those powers.  However, "redistributing wealth" has no constitutional basis.

True...for the American constitution.  But philosophically speaking in general?  After all, the American constitution prohibits the government from establishing a state religion, but we would argue that a government can do this (though perhaps is not required to).

I'm thinking less about our personal responsibilities than the government's role in this.

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Re: Do we have a duty to help the poor? How do we quantify that? - by cgraye - 02-02-2012, 10:36 PM

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