“Law Is a Negative Concept….”As a friend of mine once remarked, this negative concept of law is so true that the statement, the purpose of the law is to cause justice to reign, is not a rigorously accurate statement. It ought to be stated that the purpose of the law is to prevent injustice from reigning.In fact, it is injustice, instead of justice, that has an existence of its own. Justice is achieved only when injustice is absent.
“But when the law, by means of its necessary agent, force, imposes upon men a regulation of labor, a method or a subject of education, a religious faith or creed-then the law is no longer negative; it acts positively upon people. It substitutes the will of the legislator for their own wills; the initiative of the legislator for their own initiatives. When this happens, the people no longer need to discuss, to compare, to plan ahead; the law does all this for them. Intelligence becomes a useless prop for the people; they cease to be men; they lose their personality, their liberty, their property.” Frederic Bastiat, The Law, page 25.
What does this mean? It means there is a difference between using laws to prohibit people from doing bad things to others, and laws that require people to do things considered “good” by those who happen to be in charge at any given time.
For example, outlawing murder is to prevent injustice from reigning. Making a law that everyone must purchase a product from a private institution is the loss of inherent rights to liberty and property.
The former is the proper role of government, the latter is tyranny. Sadly, we have voted in tyranny at almost every turn, and have forfeited our God given rights of liberty and property. If you don’t think this is true, see how well not buying health insurance works out for you, or not paying property taxes every year. You basically rent your house from the government, forever. You don’t pay? They take all your stuff. How is that freedom?
The guise of the property tax being good is that they use the ill-gotten money to pay for schools, in part. How could anyone be against paying for schools, they ask?
I’ll ask it like this: imagine I clean out your bank account, and use that money to feed the homeless. You don’t get to charge me with theft because I used your money “wisely.”
We have hired/elected people to be the thieves, and now it’s considered honorable. The premise is the same, and it is still theft, no matter how honorable the expenditure of the stolen money may be.
The question is: do we stand on principle? Or do we throw principle and rights out the window when something sounds nice?
You make that choice, each time you vote. Best to know where you stand.