What Constitutes a "Right?"

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Kevin_Kennedy, Sep 15, 2009.

  1. Kevin_Kennedy
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    Kevin_Kennedy Defend Liberty

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    A "right" is something that you have naturally. You have a right to your life, your liberty, your property, and your personal pursuit of happiness. The word "right" is thrown around too loosely in politics. If you believe you have a right to something then look at the situation deeper. Does your supposed "right" require the government's force to back it up? Does your "right" require the government to take from one person through taxation to supply you with your "right?" If the answer is yes then your "right" is clearly not a right at all because it violates somebody else's right to their own property. You cannot have a right to something that violates somebody else's rights.
     
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  2. theDoctorisIn
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    theDoctorisIn Senior Mod Staff Member Senior USMB Moderator

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    I'm going to play devil's advocate a little here...

    Where does this right to property come from?
     
  3. Sidestreamer
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    Sidestreamer BANNED

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    Naturally there are no rights to anything other than your thoughts and ideas, and that does not include the expression of those two or the life that gives you the ability to have them. Every "right" we have in society, including your right to life, is created through common social standards within our society, and have to be protected by law, force or whatever mechanism is in place wherever you are. What's called your "god-given right" to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness can theoretically be taken away by a simple change of government if it was to fall to a ruthless dictator. In this very nation, African slaves had no right to liberty or the pursuit of happiness. So I would say yes, you need some kind of social order to establish any kind of right beyond the right to possess your thoughts during your life.

    Your other questions are moot. You're not arguing rights, you're clearly arguing legalities between the government-given right to property and taxation.
     
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  4. theDoctorisIn
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    theDoctorisIn Senior Mod Staff Member Senior USMB Moderator

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    This is what I was going to get at.
     
  5. Care4all
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    Care4all Warrior Princess Supporting Member

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    but kevin,
    You don't have a right to a fire department and you don't have a right to have roads and you don't have a right to have a military or a post office EITHER...or policemen or even secret service for the president...you don't have a right to wall street regulation or schools etc yet taxes are taken from us and given to another....
     
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  6. JakeStarkey
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    JakeStarkey Diamond Member Supporting Member

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    Kevin's 'rights' in our society are not unmallable. One cannot yell "fire" in a crowded auditorium, for instance, and one can't not practice cannibalism on one's property. If he is concerned about taxation and property, he needs to take up with his state and national legislatures.
     
  7. goldcatt
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    goldcatt Catch me if you can! Supporting Member

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    Rights are powers and protections set aside for entities outside government to pursue their interests without unreasonable limitation or restriction, whether they are individuals, communities, businesses, religious institutions, or what have you. Different opinions of how to balance various kinds of rights and what constitutes "reasonable" linitations are often in conflict - always have been, always will be. That's the beauty of possessing the individual liberty to have and express an opinion.
    The right to be free from taxation does not exist. Rather, the type and level of taxation is one reflection of the balance between different kinds of rights and how the government (which in the US includes the People) splits the difference between competing rights.
    An obvious example: Should the right of the community as a whole to fire and police protection (the right to a basic level of security in your person and property) be more important than the individual right to not pay taxes? The answer is almost always "YES". Other questions provoke more heated debate, depending on the individual's view and the balance between the individual and the community.
    The OP's error is in equating the desire for minimal taxation with a "right". Tax policy is (or ideally should be) a tool and a reflection of the balance between collective and individual rights, not in itself either a right or an infringement of rights.
     
  8. editec
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    editec Mr. Forgot-it-All

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    You have no rights.

    Rights are something that cannot be taken from you.

    You cannot name a single thing that cannot be taken away from you.
     
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  9. Fatality
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    Fatality SunCrackedSoul

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    spoken like a true totalitarian
     
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  10. Kevin_Kennedy
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    Kevin_Kennedy Defend Liberty

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    The right to property comes from the fact that you work and you earn property. No one can rightfully take from you that which you have worked hard for and earned.
     

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