| Cliches of Socialism, Chapter
"Human rights are more important than property rights."
It is not the right of property which is protected, but the right to property. Property, per se, has no rights; but the individual-the man-has three great rights, equally sacred from arbitrary interference: the right to his life, the right to his liberty, the right to his property.... The three rights are so bound together as to be essentially one right. To give a man his life but deny him his liberty, is to take from him all that makes his life worth living. To give him his liberty but take from him the property which is the fruit and badge of his liberty, is to still leave him a slave.
U.S. Supreme Court Justice GEORGE SUTHERLAND
TRICKY PHRASES with favorable meanings and emotional appeal are being used today to imply a distinction between property rights and human rights.
By implication, there are two sets of rights - one belonging to human beings and the other to property. Since human beings are more important, it is natural for the unwary to react in favor of human rights.
Actually, there is no such distinction between property rights and human rights. The term property has no significance except as it applies to something owned by someone. Property itself has neither rights nor value, save only as human interests are involved. There are no rights but human rights, and what are spoken of as property rights are only the human rights of individuals to property.
Expressed more accurately, the issue is not one of property rights versus human rights, but of the human rights of one person in the community versus the human rights of another.
What are the property rights thus disparaged by being set apart from human rights? They are among the most ancient and basic of human rights, and among the most essential to freedom and progress. They are the privileges of private ownership which give meaning to the right to the product of one's labor - privileges which men have always regarded instinctively as belonging to them almost as intimately and inseparably as their own bodies. Unless people can feel secure in their ability to retain the fruits of their labor, there is little incentive to save and to expand the fund of capital - the tools and equipment for production and for better living.
The Bill of Rights in the United States Constitution recognizes no distinction between property rights and other human rights. The ban against unreasonable search and seizure covers "Persons, houses, papers, and effects," without discrimination. No person may, without due process of law, be deprived of "life, liberty, or property"; all are equally inviolable. The right of trial by jury is assured in criminal and civil cases alike. Excessive bail, excessive fines, and cruel and unusual punishments are grouped in a single prohibition. The Founding Fathers realized what some present-day politicians seem to have forgotten: A man without property rights-without the right to the product of his own labor-is not a free man. These constitutional rights all have two characteristics in common. First, they apply equally to all persons. Second, they are, without exception, guarantees of freedom or immunity from governmental interference. They are not assertions of claims against others, individually or collectively. They merely say, in effect, that there are certain human liberties, including some pertaining to property, which are essential to free men and upon which the state shall not infringe.
Now what about the so-called human rights that are represented as superior to property rights? What about the "right" to a job, the "right" to a standard of living, the "right" to a minimum wage or a maximum work week, the "right" to a "fair" price, the "right" to bargain collectively, the "right" to security against the adversities and hazards of life, such as old age and disability?
The framers of the Constitution would have been astonished to hear these things spoken of as rights. They are not immunities from governmental compulsion; on the contrary, they are demands for new forms of governmental compulsion. They are not claims to the product of one's own labor; they are, in some if not in most cases, claims to the products of other people's labor.
These "human rights" are indeed different from property rights, for they rest on a denial of the basic concept of property rights. They are not freedoms or immunities assured to all persons alike. They are special privileges conferred upon some persons at the expense of others. The real distinction is not between property rights and human rights, but between equality of protection from governmental compulsion on the one hand and demands for the exercise of such compulsion for the benefit of favored groups on the other.
Dr. Paul L. Poirot Foundation for Economic Education Published October 1962 Permission to reprint granted without special request.
************************************************************* "Gerard J. Cecchettini" wrote:
Mary Ann and I went to the advanced showing of The Patriot yesterday at the Kabuki Theater in San Francisco. The line was all the way around the block and the show was overbooked. We were lucky to get in.
Before the show the National Guard's "Color Guard" marched down the right side of the theater, across the stage to the left side of the stage and stopped, set the U. S. Flag in the stands provided, did an about face facing the flags and saluted.
Our National Anthem was supposed to play as they marched across the stage. When that didn't happen, the standing audience whistled and sung our National Anthem. Astounding. When the theater finally figured out the audio and played the National Anthem again and we all hummed and sang to it.
There were three to four rows reserved for the press.
After a few announcements from the Chronicle who promoted this, the show began.
Except for the "General Cornwallis" character, I suppose that the rest were composites of the people of the times. Complete with Hardcore British Officers, Rough and Tough emerging Americans, Traitors, and Patriots.
The accuracy, in our opinion, was not so much in the actual historical accounts of battles, but of the way it must have been in those days. We believe that overall this is how it really was. We were reminded of how precious is our liberty and purchased by such a great price. It made us stronger in our resolve to fight to preserve our liberty.
In the scene when the Patriot handed the guns to his children the audience cheered. You will understand why when you see the production. I do not understand how anyone could have gasped at that scene unless they had no emotions, no feelings, and no rage. They would have to be numb from inside and out not to have cheered.
After the show, a Filipino man said to me "What an interesting movie. They did all this with no supplies, equipment, etc." I said to him that this was the price paid for our liberty. This liberty that legislators want to legislate away with stroke of a pen. We must be ever diligent to protect our liberty at every turn.
This production is well worth seeing and will strengthen your resolve to fight against these acts of treason against our liberty with a new fervor.
Gerard & Mary Ann GGUNRAMC **************************************************************************** Author Unknown:
Have you ever wondered what happened to the 56 men who signed the Declaration of Independence?
Five signers were captured by the British as traitors, and tortured before they died.
Twelve had their homes ransacked and burned. Two lost their sons serving in the Revolutionary Army; another had two sons captured.
Nine of the 56 fought and died from wounds or hardships of the Revolutionary War.
They signed and they pledged their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor.
What kind of men were they?
Twenty-four were lawyers and jurists. Eleven were merchants, nine were farmers and large plantation owners; men of means, well educated. But they signed the Declaration of Independence knowing full well that the penalty would be death if they were captured.
Carter Braxton of Virginia, a wealthy planter and trader, saw his ships swept from the seas by the British Navy. He sold his home and properties to pay his debts, and died in rags.
Thomas McKeam was so hounded by the British that he was forced to move his family almost constantly. He served in the Congress without pay, and his family was kept in hiding. His possessions were taken from him, and poverty was his reward.
Vandals or soldiers looted the properties of Dillery, Hall, Clymer,Walton, Gwinnett, Heyward, Ruttledge, and Middleton.
At the battle of Yorktown, Thomas Nelson Jr., noted that the British General Cornwallis had taken over the Nelson home for his headquarters. He quietly urged General George Washington to open fire. The home was destroyed, and Nelson died bankrupt.
Francis Lewis had his home and properties destroyed. The enemy jailed his wife, and she died within a few months.
John Hart was driven from his wife's bedside as she was dying. Their 13 children fled for their lives. His fields and his gristmill were laid to waste. For more than a year he lived in forests and caves, returning home to find his wife dead and his children vanished. A few weeks later he died from exhaustion and a broken heart. Norris and Livingston suffered similar fates.
Such were the stories and sacrifices of the American Revolution. These were not wild-eyed, rabble rousing ruffians. They were soft-spoken men of means and education.
They had security, but they valued liberty more. Standing tall, straight, and unwavering, they pledged: "For the support of this declaration, with firm reliance on the protection of the divine providence, we mutually pledge to each other, our lives, our fortunes, and our sacred honor."
They gave you and me a free and independent America. The history books never told you a lot about what happened in the Revolutionary War. We didn't fight just the British. We were British subjects at that time and we fought our own government!
Some of us take these liberties so much for granted, but we shouldn't.
So, take a few minutes while enjoying your 4th of July holiday and silently thank these patriots. It's not much to ask for the price they paid.
Remember: freedom is never free!
I hope you will show your support by please
sending this to as many people as you can. It's time we get the word out
that patriotism is NOT a sin, and the Fourth of July has more to it than
beer, picnics, and baseball games.
Thank you Mike!
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