The importance of private property rights

5 billion of the world’s 7 billion people don’t have the documents to live in a particular place. To be precise, they don’t have the legal property rights required to reside, own assets or do business in their own or any other country. That’s 5 billion without any enforceable guarantee that they will not be expropriated or environmentally contaminated by powerful business, government, terrorists, or criminals. That also means they will struggle to have access to credit or the ability to raise capital since borrowers typically need to pledge some kind of property in exchange. Only 1 billion people living in the West, Japan, Singapore, and the like, and another billion in the westernized areas of developing and former Soviet nations have the documents to protect and leverage their rights.

Invade the world, invite the world, investigate the world

In almost all cases, those who oppose the national government’s universal surveillance of U.S. citizens are correct. It is unconstitutional because it violates the 4th Amendment, undermines the 1st Amendment, and is only necessary because the national government has put the United States in a lose/lose situation. It will not stop the U.S.-led overseas military, political, and cultural interventions that motivate the Islamists to attack Americans, but it will not use the U.S. military to its fullest potential to destroy the enemy it has motivated to kill Americans. So long as this status quo continues, the civil liberties of Americans will be incrementally abridged and perhaps ultimately eliminated. That is simply the unavoidable result of prolonged and unnecessary wars, and the executive branch’s aggrandizement of power that inevitably accompanies such wars.

Tyranny of the majority

And what sort of philosophical doctrine is this — that numbers confer unlimited rights, that they take from some persons all rights over themselves, and vest these rights in others … How, then, can the rights of three men exceed the rights of two men? In what possible way can the rights of three men absorb the rights of two men, and make them as if they had never existed … It is not possible to suppose, without absurdity, that a man should have no rights over his own body and mind, and yet have a 1/10,000,000th share in unlimited rights over all other bodies and minds?

Legalizing theft

When a legislature decides to steal some of our rights and plans to use police force to accomplish it, what’s the real difference between them and the thief? Darn little! They hide behind the excuse that they’re legislating democratically. The fact they do it by a majority vote has no moral significance whatsoever. Numerical might does not constitute right, no more than a lynch mob can justify its act because a majority participated.