Wednesday, March 14, 2012

How the Government can ensure 'Fairness'

There are numerous calls from some in Washington and some in society for the Federal Government to ensure fairness for all those in society. They decry how a minority child born to a single minority mother in a poverty-stricken area is at birth at an unfair disadvantage when compared to a white child born in a white two-parent family in a well-to-do area. Those who decry that those infants were born into unfair situations are correct. Nature is not fair; however, nature is not unfair. There isn’t a volitional force that looked at the combination of ovum and sperm to say ‘upon my reason and feelings, this combination will be X and this combination will be Y.’ In nature and how things come about in nature is the epitome of the saying: it is what it is.

A thief may steal property; a tornado may destroy property. A thief has to continually take into account his life, his environment, the interactions between the two, along with where he sees he should direct himself; this is consciously or (generally) unconsciously done. The tornado doesn’t take anything into account; it is just the result numerous forces that have no contemplation to them. It is wrong to conflate what Nature brings with what the State may bring. What is the difference?—it is the difference between what is chosen, against what just is. The thief chooses his actions. There is no will in Nature. Nature doesn’t act in the way men do. Men act from will; nature acts in material causation without any will. Fairness may exist in the world of will; fairness doesn’t exist in material causation. Only a hack will prevaricate the word ‘fair’ when comparing the fairness they want the State to provide against the fairness that Nature didn’t provide.

The government, regardless of how much those in it may desire, is not like Nature. Government isn’t just is; government is nothing more than a collection of individuals who have been entrusted with the legal use of force to ensure justice prevails in a society based on the laws therein. The laws are to reflect individual rights. If the government goes beyond the protection of individual rights (which are to pursue self-directed action) it is to giving things to the people (entitlements). Entitlements are ‘rights’ to that which someone else produced. The government doesn’t have its own means, is not self-sustaining, and it needs to be funded – primarily through taxes. To go beyond allowing free actions to entitlements, government ‘giving’ can only be done by someone else first producing something that is then taken by the government that has legal (not moral) use of force. After the government takes the product of one to give to another, the laws become unfair by definition – taking from one who invested their resources (time, energy, money and material goods) to be given to a third person who did not do the work for that given product.

How can governmental unfairness be implemented?—in two ways: in who is selected to have their resources taken; in who is selected to receive those resources. What is it that is unfair in such government actions?—it is the legal use of force to take from one to give to another. What must be done before the government may take from some in order to give to another?—there must be a legal division amongst people. Who can make and enforce such legal divisions?—only the government. The divisions possible are infinite. Common divisions are gender, income, ethnicity, sexual preferences, health/handicapped, immigrant status and on, and on; to add to the infinite combinations, groupings may be made such as physically (and/or not mentally) handicapped elderly, mentally (and/or not physically) handicapped Asians, Filipino homosexuals, single black mothers and on, and on where adjectives and nouns may be switched about easily. With so many divisions are made that the most quickly growing (i.e. shrinking group) minority group is that of the healthy individual. Who is going to provide for the rest?

Among our rights are the freedoms of speech and free association that are in the Constitution. The right to justly acquired property is not explicitly stated; it is implied for if one doesn’t have a right to their justly acquired property, then they have no means of sustaining their life, or to pursue any other actions.

Financially, utilizing the right of speech and association (and property) is how we proceed in the businesses we frequent, banks we store our money in and if deciding to be charitable, what charities we want to donate to: voting with our feet, or wallet. For example, a family with a child that has Downs Syndrome may decide to donate their money to a charity that helps like families, or frequent a private clinic that has treatment programs the family sees as best for their child. The same freedom of speech and association happens for the patron going to a restaurant owned by a member of like ethnicity, or for one who uses organic & free-range goods, as a matter of convenience for being nearby, and all other various options that any individual may use in justifying their preference for A over B.

At the individual level, it is an act of free speech and association with who we want to relate to, or not relate to in both business and professionally. This includes wise and foolish choices. Discrimination is good when properly applied; the one who wants to support a specific cause, team, family member does so by discriminating against the rest for not being the one they want. One who discriminates foolishly is to be given the same right to associate and speak as they choose, and suffer the necessary consequences. Nothing will remove stupidity as quickly as feeling the full force of the consequences of stupid decisions, such as the teams who refused to allow blacks to play losing to the teams that were integrated.

The government, using force, removes the free speech and association that are our rights; government officials pass and enforce laws that remove our decisions from us. Based on the whim of those in power, they take the resources taken by force and give those resources to a specific group. Through the force of a gun (don’t pay taxes and refuse the fines and see what happens), the bureaucrat will give your funds that you didn’t willfully give, and hand them over to those you don’t support. Where is the ‘fairness’ in that?

Even with this said, there is a way for the federal government to ensure fairness to the extent government can in its actions. It is obvious and being so, overlooked. The divisions that have been fostered from class-warfare, gender wars and all the various ethnic-hyphenated groups only seek to divide us, making us easier to rule for we don’t target the cause of the divisions. The way to ensure fairness in government actions is to not look at those divisions.

If we allow the federal government to make one division, the principle that dividing us is acceptable is made and all groups will seek to be the exception. If we denied the federal government this division, then most of the problems that exist in contemporary society would be gone. Don’t like ‘welfare mothers,’ or bank bailouts?—the federal government shouldn’t be looking at income. Don’t like different standards for minorities/whites/males?—the federal government shouldn’t be looking at skin color or gender (the government is the only one that can force segregation). Lobbyists would exist, but eventually become extinct for they wouldn’t be able to petition the government to act on the behalf of any one individual/group/industry over another. The problems with drug enforcement no longer exist for without rights-violations there is no crime to punish; the government couldn’t punish someone using heroin, smoking marijuana any more than someone drinking a beer (alcohol), or a soda (caffeine); regardless of what was ingested, the actions outside consumption would be the punishable offences for violating another’s rights, just as rights-violating acts are punishable when sober. Taxes would be the same percentage regardless of what was being purchased, or what one’s income may be; the government couldn’t say one was more sinful than another, or that one earned too much. The rich would still pay more, but not in percentage, and all would have ‘skin in the game.’ This lack of division would also apply to services, for the government shouldn’t be looking at who needs and uses (if uses how much) those services (health care, contraception, food) over those who don’t.

Charities help people more than government can. Charities are funded voluntarily. As being voluntarily funded, it was through individuals giving their resources they’ve earned and giving it to causes they believe in and want to donate. Charity is a gift those in society give its other members. It is to be recognized as a gift for when demanded and taken by the State, entitlements state that we are allowed to keep some of what we’ve earned, and the State will decide how much that may be. What is the fairness in having a third party deciding what you’re allowed to keep from the work you put forth?

The federal government doesn’t have any business separating us in society beyond what the census is for: have you been born?-are you still alive?-are you of legal majority (i.e. legally an adult)? How much anyone made, color of skin, gender, ethnicity and all other factors would be (as they should be) irrelevant to the government. What interest should the federal government have in any of these divisions?—in recognizing these divisions, the federal government codifies and buttresses the divisions as relevant. Is that a desirable result: legal division, of stating who is what type of an individual based on whatever collective-flavor-of-the-month is popular? If we denied the government that extra-constitutional liberty, then most all government abuses would be eliminated: no cronyism; no regulations protecting some/punishing others; no one who could see another as by a matter of existing, owing anything to anyone else.

Some will decry about some form of collective fairness: that some group suffered more by another and needs to be compensated. (as if fairness could be possible by lumping all individuals of a shared characteristic into the a group that a few members actually acted inappropriately; there is no fairness possible when crossing individual and group responsibility). But let us look at attempts at collective fairness, briefly. Some of us have proclivities and choose life paths that are more rewarding than others; think of the productive member of society who after years of training and hard work beyond a standard 40-hour work week, becomes a success and is targeted to have more taken from him in taxes to pay for the rest, and contrast that member with someone who works enough just to pay the bills, doesn’t devote themselves to bettering themselves beyond that, and contrast both of the aforementioned to the thief who wants to steal the first two’s property. They contribute, or even take away from society, differently. To have them treated equally would be unfair to society, for the one who works harder will not continue to do so as his efforts are not rewarded, and if the thief is not punished appropriately, he will continue to take from society. The lesser elements will thrive and the higher elements will starve. Is that fair for society as a whole?

If we allow the government to make such distinctions among us, and to try and help us, we not only not fix the issue of unfairness, but solidify it ever moreso in our lives for it is further codified in its dividing us amongst, and against each other. Absolute fairness is impossible. Miscommunications and abuses will still exist; they exist in the free market just as they do in government. The unfairness that may emerge in the free market may be more quickly remedied by the affected parties. With unfairness codified in the laws with divisions made amongst us, the law ensures we will be infighting, and the groups contesting against each other most will cycle so that we don’t look at the cause of our divisions: the State. To remove codified and systematic unfairness, it would require systematically having those groups divided as such to not compete against each other and unify against what created them.

Finally, fair is such an easily prevaricated term, it gets tossed about in conversations without a Stasis point, without an agreed upon definition. As such, where agreement is superficially made, there is still disagreement in principle. Worst of all, those who want to manipulate us use the word fair, intentionally prevaricating it, in order to push their agenda getting us stuck in their new system. With such problems following the word fair, it can be one of the worst four-letter words in the English language. It’s too important, the fields where the term fair may be used. Let’s make sure we know exactly what is being discussed when fair is used.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

In Memoriam

RIP Andrew Breitbart. Like with most people, I agreed with him on some ideas, disagreed on other ideas. Where he was an exemplar was in courage and dedication in his work.