Cold Fury

Harshing your mellow since 9/01

Rights Vs. Wants

The Gunslinger explains things:

Anything that requires the labor of someone else cannot be a universal human right.

Our Constitutional, Natural Law rights require only that others leave us alone. They require no labor, action, payment, participation or sacrifice of anyone else on our behalf.

We have the right to NOT be interfered with when we speak, practice religion, gather, or bear arms. We have the right NOT to be imprisoned without due-process, to be searched without cause, to be made to testify against ourselves.

See how that works?

But the “rights” that the Progressives pretend we have, like health care, education, food, housing and jobs…all require the participation of others.

Health care requires the labor of doctors.
Education requires the labor of teachers.
Housing requires the labor of builders.

If you take any supposed “right” and you push it to its logical conclusion—and the only solution would entail the coercing of any individual—it’s not a right at all.

It’s just a greedy, selfish Want.

Sounds, uhh, right to me.

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2 thoughts on “Rights Vs. Wants

  1. Mike, this is one reason why I dislike using the term “rights.” The term “right” can mean many things, but in this context there are two completely different (indeed, often mutually exclusive) definitions of a “right.”

    A “right” can either be a liberty, or an entitlement.

    An entitlement is the right to have something that is taken away from someone else. For example, if you work at a job, you put in your 40 or 80 hours and after that, you are entitled to receive your pay, pursuant to whatever contract or arrangement you have with your employer. The money is taken away from the employer and given to you. If you are a stockholder and are entitled to receive dividends, then that, too, is an entitlement, and again is pursuant to whatever contractual arrangement you have with the company issuing the stock.

    As a veteran, I have certain entitlements through the VA, entitlements I earned through my service.

    And of course, as we all know, the government can also create entitlements like welfare, food stamps, etc. In those cases, the government agency sets up certain standards and those who meet the qualifications are entitled to receive goods or services pursuant to the legislation that created the entitlement programs (and subject to modification and change, again as per the dictates of the law.)

    A liberty is simply the right to be left alone. Free speech is a classic example of a liberty. The government is required to leave you alone to exercise your right to speak freely. They are not obligated to buy you a web site, a TV slot, or even so much as a soapbox to stand on, but neither can they interfere with your right to speak. In the same way you have the liberty to worship whatever deity you please but the government is not obligated to build you a church.

    The second amendment is your liberty to own firearms – the government is not required to buy you one.

    The fifth amendment privilege against self incrimination is a bit of an oddball because after some 19th and 20th century court cases, you now have both the liberty to use the services of an attorney if you are charged with a crime, and in some cases you might also have the entitlement to a court-appointed attorney.

    Liberals love to use the confusing term “rights” when they say things like “people have the right to decent housing” or “people have the right to health care.”

    They are correct if the term “right” in that sense is characterized as a liberty: Certainly you have the liberty to obtain whatever housing you can find that you can afford and that you can otherwise qualify for. Certainly you have the liberty to seek out whatever medical treatment you desire whether it’s heart surgery or breast implants, and provided you can find a way to pay for said procedures. But of course that’s not what the liberals mean: What they mean is that you have an entitlement to housing or medical care, provided at someone else’s cost.

    That such entitlements are simply unsustainable has apparently not deterred the so-called “progressives” from insisting that they exist.

  2. That’s the point.

    You can’t equate “rights” to “entitlements”.

    Rights are for all, if your “right” takes my money, well, that’s not a “right”. And it’s not right.

    That’s the whole point of gunslinger’s post.
    Or, as I thought of it,
    Your rights end at my wallet.

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