Basis of property, was capitalist character values

From: Mitchell, Jerry (3337) (
Date: Tue Jul 24 2001 - 12:19:26 MDT

Russle wrote:
The issue I'm trying to define throughout, as precisely as I can, is simply
why it is wrong for the law to be what it is, ie to include tax legislation
etc. And this means that I want a more general answer to the question: what
kinds of laws are morally acceptable (or morally binding)?

I know that I some of my emails might seem to come off as a rant, sorry if
it seems that way. Im not trying to glue my feet on a soapbox, its just
really hard for me to divorce myself from these concepts and not have them
affect me on a very primal level. I will say I am still refining my views
and still have a lot of work to do on them, so I dont have answers to some
of the questions your stating quiet yet. They do point me into good
directions to explore and get tied down and I thank you for that. That being
said, Ill try to answer this question best I can.

I do think law and morality are 2 different things. Law "should" embody
morality perfectly (in a perfect world), but that people still would have a
right to choose to do immoral things as long as it didnt violate others
rights (perfect definition to be defined some time in the future as well).
The science of law has the burden to uncover the structure that the law
should take, but they cant very well do their job until the framework for an
objective morality is fleshed out. I think HUGE strides have been made in
objective philosophy, but the prerequisites for building it wasnt availible
till Rand nailed down some basic issues here recently. Now that some basics
can be discerned, the field will march forward and the proofs and answers
will come.

Im man enough to admit that I cant lay out the entire argument in detail, Im
not a philosophy major, but I can spot where philosophy crosses a few lines
in the sand that I have worked out. I can say with my present level of
knowledge that one principle that has yet to be proven wrong is: "No force
is to be initiated on another person". Keep in mind the context, force can
be used for defence. Fraud does count as an indirect use of force. This
sounds to me like a wonderful concept. I can imagine such a world where
force is banished. This is why taxes are wrong, and may be a very good
boundary to put on a government.

P.S. James Madison said:
In its larger and juster meaning...a man has property in his opinions and
the free communication of the free use of his faculties and free
choice of the objects on which to employ them. In a word, as a man is said
to have a right to his property, he may be equally said to have a property
in his rights.

Jerry Mitchell

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