Errors of Russia
#61
(02-15-2012, 09:30 AM)PeterII Wrote:
Crusading Philo Wrote:Don't libertarians argue that the vast majority of people ought to be wage-slaves? On the question of duties and rights, we also have a duty to give to the poor. Does that mean that the poor have a right to my money? Someone having a duty to do something does not imply that I have some sort of "right" inhering in my nature that obligates him to fulfill that duty.

Choosing to work for a wage does not make one a slave.  In a free market society, people have the freedom to choose how to earn a living.  There is natural inequality, but equal opportunity. There is no natural law "duty" to give to the poor, which is an act of charity and mercy.   

Crusading Philologist Wrote:At any rate, I'm not sure why consent is all that important in questions of distributing goods. The state has a right and obligation to oversee this distribution, and this entails the authority to create laws directed toward the common good, which are of course not based on consent. So, as long as the state is acting in order to promote the common good, I'm not sure that consent is especially important.

The State has rights but individuals don't?  There's Hobbes Leviathan for you.  What's to stop the overlords from imprisoning or killing wealthy people and distributing their property for the "common good"?

Did you miss the part where the state, even a corrupted state, is an agent of God?
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#62
(02-15-2012, 09:30 AM)PeterII Wrote:
Crusading Philo Wrote:Don't libertarians argue that the vast majority of people ought to be wage-slaves? On the question of duties and rights, we also have a duty to give to the poor. Does that mean that the poor have a right to my money? Someone having a duty to do something does not imply that I have some sort of "right" inhering in my nature that obligates him to fulfill that duty.

Choosing to work for a wage does not make one a slave.  In a free market society, people have the freedom to choose how to earn a living.  

But most people don't really choose to work for a wage. It isn't a choice for them. It's just the way things are.

(02-15-2012, 09:30 AM)PeterII Wrote: There is no natural law "duty" to give to the poor, which is an act of charity and mercy.   

But why should we limit it to the natural law? Charity is a command of the divine law, which is no less binding than the natural law. So, if a duty always implies a natural right then I don't see why the poor would not have an obligation to charity. Plus, the Social Kingship of Christ and all that, right?

(02-15-2012, 09:30 AM)PeterII Wrote: The State has rights but individuals don't?  There's Hobbes Leviathan for you.  What's to stop the overlords from imprisoning or killing wealthy people and distributing their property for the "common good"?

Hobbes was a proto-liberal, you know. The theory of natural rights and his theory of sovereignty, adopted by liberals, allowed the state to expand far beyond the limits set for it in the Middle Ages, so from an historical perspective liberalism has not even managed to live up to its promise to restrict the state. Before rights, states were restricted by divine, natural, and human law, by custom, and by a complex social space. This was far more effective than rights claims, which actually expand the power of the state by bringing it into regular contact with all of its citizens. 
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#63
Why doesn't the government just make a law forcing everyone to be a saint?  Then all our problems will be solved.  Eye-roll

Your utopian view of history is untenable.
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#64
(02-15-2012, 05:46 PM)PeterII Wrote: Why doesn't the government just make a law forcing everyone to be a saint?  Then all our problems will be solved.  Eye-roll

Your utopian view of history is untenable.

The government can't do that.  But it does bear the sword to punish wickedness, as a minister of God (a term St. Paul uses three times in one paragraph).
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#65
I don't think libertarians can really go around accusing others of utopianism. These are the people who believe that everything will be just great once we set up a "pure" capitalism that, by their own admission, has never actually existed. In fact, a pure free market can never exist outside of libertarian theory because the market is nothing more than a secretion of the state. Of course, the relationship between market and state is complicated to the point that the market has come to dominate the state, making politics impossible, but still, you cannot have a market economy without a state wiling to force society to organize around it. I don't see what is utopian about seeing this twin domination of society by market and state as undesirable and wishing for a return to a method of social organization that allows for politics to truly take place.
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