Thursday, September 17, 2009

Why There is No Right to Healthcare

By Michael Labeit

Proposals for greater government intervention in the healthcare industry, including “Obamacare,” are all contingent upon the ethical proposition that people have a right to healthcare. But is this widely held assertion true? Hardly.

In order to debunk the claim that healthcare is a right, one must first identify what a right is. A right, according to the great thinker Ayn Rand, is “a moral principle defining and sanctioning a man’s freedom of action in a social context.” There are three primary rights: the right to life, to liberty, and to property.

Philosopher Craig Biddle succinctly explains these three rights as follows:

"The right to life is the right to act as one’s life requires—which means, on the judgment of one’s mind. The right to liberty is the right to be free from coercive interference—so that one can act on the judgment of one’s mind. The right to property is the right to keep, use, and dispose of the product of one’s effort—which one does by acting on one’s judgment."

As indicated by Biddle, rights can only be violated by “coercive interference,” otherwise known as the initiation of physical force, or simply aggression. Assault, murder, theft, etc - these are acts of aggression since they obstruct man's freedom of action. They prevent him from exercising his rights and taking those actions sanctioned by his rights. The significance of rights is easy to discern, for envision a society where rights are not recognized by the political authorities, where the freedom to guide one’s own life or enjoy the product of one’s own labour does not exist. We have seen (and continue to see) many examples of this in action, at home and abroad.

Now, what is meant when left-liberals argue that "healthcare is a right?" The implication is that a man is entitled to healthcare goods simply if he lacks them and requires them. The problem that arises here is that healthcare goods - hospital treatment, medicinal products, health insurance - must be produced with, among other things, human labour. Doctors must work to treat patients; drug companies must work to develop medicine; insurers must work to cover financial risk. Since healthcare goods require human labour for their existence, a "right" to healthcare goods implies a "right" to the mental and physical labour of others, a "right" to be provided with healthcare goods against the will of the providers of healthcare goods.

Such an alleged "right" violates genuine rights because it sanctions aggression, for a "right" to healthcare only has meaning when healthcare providers and taxpayers can be effectively and reliably coerced into offering/paying for healthcare goods for those who don't have them or can’t afford them. Exercising one's "right" to healthcare would necessarily involve levying unchosen duties and obligations upon others. In practice, this entails, among other things: the imposition of compulsory labour upon doctors, price controls on drugs from pharmaceutical firms, the imposition of obligatory coverage mandates upon health insurance enterprises, and, above all, increased taxation. These are all acts of “coercive interference” as they represent government threats backed by the promise of government-administered physical force.

Such authority amounts to the "right" to enslave, for a "right" to healthcare means a "right" to command involuntary servitude from others. This is the case with all so-called "positive rights." There is no right to an education, or to an income, or to housing, or to credit, anymore than there is a right to a luxury yacht. Who will be forced to fulfill the debts and obligations both financial and physical imposed by the government acting on behalf of those exercising such "rights?" What about the rights of these individuals? No - we have a right to pursue material values but not to material values. Rights promise freedom, not commodities.

Until Barack Obama and his supporters in Congress understand this, they will continue to prosecute an agenda that will surely aggravate the already chronic problems of our healthcare industry.

Michael Labeit is an economics major, a disgruntled army reservist, an aspiring freelance writer, and an amateur logician. He currently resides in the People's Republic of New York City and can be reached at

-Biddle, Craig. “Immigration and Individual Rights.” The Objective Standard. Spring 2008. Accessed August 20th, 2009. -Rand, Ayn. The Virtue of Selfishness. Accessed August 20th, 2009. Signet, November 1, 1964


  1. The "rights" argument goes to the real heart of the issue. This is why supporters of ObamaCare are apparently completely interested in a realistic appraisal of costs and benefits. That's why they aren't interested in the timing of the proposal, the idea that it perhaps should be shelved until the current wars are over or the recent debt splurge paid down, just does not compute. Even the issue of exactly how many people really are uninsured and why, and any discussion of what alternatives can be used to narrow that gap, is irrelevant to them. They aren't even all that interested in the quality or lack of quality various health care delivery models offer. Generally speaking they don't even support or contribute to voluntary charitable and altruistic health care operations, certainly no more than their opponents do, because that's not their point either. What irritates them is disparity and difference. The absolute level of healt care in terms of quality and quantity, even the absolute level for those at the bottom is outside of their concern. They are basically interested in imposing a universal system come what may, whether it even works is really a secondary matter. They believe in "universal" systems and that's that. They have a belief in a communitarian "right" to health service to be provided by the state (although that is a word they like to avoid) because they believe "the state is society" and we would be and should be all one big happy family, whether we want to be compulsorily adopted or not. The individual plays no real part in their world view. The better of the universalizers sometimes respect the individual conscience (or at least those particular individual consciences that agree with them) but heaven forbid any individual with a conscience who wants to actually do something with that conscience in the real world.

  2. Oh dear. You have the right to be a selfish consumer.

    All your ideas are based on an unsound beginning premise - an idea that only holds true if we all start off on a level playing field.

    Poor, disadvantaged people only have themselves to blame. Yea, riiiight...

    I hope you never need to rely on other peoples' kindness to help you out ever, because if you come across someone who shares your views, you're shit out of luck buddy.

    The point of being a human being is that we care enough to look after each other. Can you have a think about that idea?

  3. Yeah. Once again, the rest of the civilized world is wrong and only nutcase "free-market" Americans are defending the right to make money off of another person's bad fortune. Hopefully, you or someone you love will find themselves in a painful medical situation without enough money to cover costs. Then you can enjoy, like a masochist, that beacon of free-marketeer medicine that the USA espouses.

  4. The term 'right' has been grossly misinterpreted here. The life, liberty, and property are universal rights to all on Earth. Health care may not be a 'right,' but it is a tool that *ALL* governments should employ to provide the right of life and property to its people.

    If I have the right to live, I have the right to live a healthy life, especially if I am a citizen in residence.

  5. I am basically in agreement with your argument regarding rights. But there was no concomitant discussion of responsibility. That's the other side of the equation which balances things out, which is the point of the aphorism regarding your right to swing your arm ends where my nose begins. The lack of responsibility -- deliberate, in my opinion -- on the part of the powerful institutions of our society has brought us to this point.

    The demand for such "rights" as health care and social security are really the only response ordinary citizens feel they can make in a social structure that routinely and systematically denies people both adequate compensation for their labor and sufficient scope to make their own way in the world. That our large institutions -- including the larcenous financial sector, their extractive mechanisms called corporations, and their handmaidens in government -- have failed to live up to the responsibility side of the equation is understandable if one also understands that they never had any intention of joining the moral social compact in which natural rights can be enjoyed and true liberty can be possible.

    People today live in debt peonage, and are subject to the whims of extraordinarily powerful forces. People are herded into jobs they hate, for less money than can reasonably sustain them, especially if they are expected to save for their own retirement, pay for their own medical expenses, and so on. While I would agree that taking care of ourselves -- that's responsibility, too -- is preferable to a nanny state, in a cash-based world many Americans are too poor to do so, and we're getting poorer by the day thanks to our financial class.

    When the food industry produces toxic junk for the masses (e.g. GM ingredients, hormone and antibiotic-laced meats, irradiation, high sugar content, etc., ad nauseum), and then both brainwashes the public into mass acceptance (are the highly advanced social engineering techniques employed by corporations even moral?) and refuses to fully disclose what's in their products, or disclose the true nature of life in our agribusiness system for plants and animals and employees alike; and if the public then develops all manner of diet related diseases -- which the health industry now profits from -- how can people be said to be free? It's almost as if the entire system were deliberately rigged to profit from birth to death on human misery. This is not what our founders intended either.

    Without responsibility, on the part of all, there can be no liberty. The significant part of Rand's quote for me was the assertion that rights stem from moral principles. And yet, there is wholesale violation of moral principles from our leading institutions as well as segments of the larger public. Simply put, the corruption from Wall Street to Washington to the liar-loan home "owner" now whining about his foreclosure renders any discussion of rights and liberty in these dis-United States moot.

    Anyway, not get off on tangents that require a book to explore properly ... while I agree that the notion of rights has been severely abused, the notion of responsibility is a subject of much less study. I would love to live in the world that the founders envisioned (minus the slavery, genocide, etc.), but that's not how things went. My personal opinion is that all of these debates are part of the ongoing social engineering designed by the powers that be to keep us dis-united, at one another's throats, while they steal away with our wealth and our liberty. The only "right" that will remain will be to enjoy our slavery. Are there any new Jeffersons or Franklins (or Paines and Henrys) who will lead the next revolution?

  6. My response to this was to long to post here, please see my reply (linked below) feel free to email a response.

    My response to this tripe. Keep in mind that simply speaking, existence in this world implies access to the most basis of commodities, or goods. The real question is whither the things necessary for existence (food, water, housing, health care) should be treated as commodities at all. If you have to pay for and be taxed on something so basic as water, food and housing today, how long before we will have to pay for things like clean air?

  7. I think the author is operating under some serious misunderstandings. There is no such thing as an inherent right. It is all a matter of opinion. Historically, different societies had different opinions of what rights are. The Founding Fathers did not believe in the rights of women. Many ethical people would argue that a society that wants to be civilized and promote a sense of decency should not allow its health care to be dominated by a bunch of parasitic corporations out to put profit over peoples lives.

  8. When is a good time to protect rights? It wasn't exactly political expedient or economically sound to free the slaves, or protect civil rights? The argument that its financially nonviable was the same argument used against medicare and social security. I guess rights are only good to care about when there either your rights, or convient to enforce. I find it amazing that the words sacrifice buy all, that it will not be easy, or simple, seems to fly over the heads of those that oppose health care for all.Under the analysis of cost and benefits out way any "moral right" to anything, then taken to its logical extreme the proponents of health care for all should actually welcome the idea of "death panels". It would be cost effective to just kill whoever is sick. It would be cost effective also to simple take those that are poor and uneducated, and make them slaves. The idea of fairness and equal ground goes out the window to cost and benefits. The costs and benefits argument is EXACTLY what lead to the rise of some of the most evil regimes in history. The health care system as it stands today DOES NOT WORK. The argument that we should do nothing to fix it is not only cowardly, but violates the cost vs benefit analysis. Furthermore, our society is based on the state (please see my analysis at Just as the state is created by individuals to serve the people, there is an obligation by individuals to ensure that the state can serve all within that society. Hence why its called a "social contract". To argue that individuals have no responsibility to the society around them, is to argue that in fact, you would prefer a natural state of anarchy, unless of course that means losing the protection that you have, regardless of whither all have them. Of course, real debate of the role of the individual in the state, and the obligations both have to each other gets lost in the screaming of the toddler; "Its my stuff, my work, and I have no obligation to anyone or anything!". Until all realizes that there is a balance of give AND take, we will continue to have rights violations of the most base kind, while claiming that the rights don't exist to began with.

  9. From a European point of view: America is built on self-exploitation, Europe is built (in theory!!) on solidarity. So all Europeans are Social-Democrats, may they like it or not. And all Americans have to be capitalists, may they like it or not. Could we not send all americanised Europeans to the US, and welcome all Americans with the proverbial European soul here in Europe? So everybody would be happy.

  10. Good guest post but I think the author errs when he defines three basic rights. There is one basic right and that right is self-ownership. His three basic rights stem from the one basic, natural right of self-ownership. It's the 'axiomatic right' of all individuals.

    Too bad most people don't recognize it these days.

  11. US consumers have some real issues with self hatred

  12. I believe our comrades on the left are too fargone intellectually to grasp the legitimacy of the concept of negative (too much Marx or Chomsky or Rawls perhaps).

    Humans require many commodities for their continued existence. Should we then recognize rights to be provided with these commodities as well? Rights to water, to food, to shelter, to education, to loanable funds, etc - the list can be infinitely long. And what of the rights of those who will be aggressed upon by the government then these positive rights are recognized. Make no mistake, those of you who believe that healthcare is a right are advocates of slavery, pure and simple. You hold that healthcare providers must be burdened with positive obligations they have not chosen.

    There is one cardinal negative responsibility under true laissez-faire capitalism: all must respect the rights of all, i.e., all must refrain from engaging in the initiation of physical force. I mention this clearly in the essay.

    I don't use the concept "self-ownership" because I believe life, liberty, and property cover my bases sufficiently. I personally like Rand's conception of rights better than Rothbard's because her's is based explicitly upon prior ontological, epistemological, and ethical propositions and concern. Liberty refers to freedom to control your body. Property refers to freedom to control anything else.

    Keep the comments coming (especially you "these are rights and those are rights too" people. I appreciate the initiative, seriously. You obviously care.

  13. Thanks to Andy for saying my thought exactly:

    "The real question is whether the things necessary for existence (food, water, housing, health care) should be treated as commodities at all."

    For example, in our culture, mere living space on the earth is handled entirely inside of the fictitious concept of "real estate." Merely to exist in society one needs to either scramble for a piece of that so-called "real property" or else scramble for a reliable source of money to pay "rent" to one of the so-called "owners."

    How real is "real property"? The rock and soil are real, and the "property" part of it is 100% imiaginary.

    But this fiction is one of the founding concepts of our culture, and it is a huge distortion of real human nature, preventing a healthy relationship betwteen humans and the earth we live on. Native, indigenous-type people see this basic falseness in our culture very clearly.

    For a society to be healthy, as a foundation, it WOULD need to protect people's individual life and liberty, and the personal property that one uses for ones own needs and one's own creativity.

    But this writer Michael Lebeit sounds like he would ONLY build that foundation, and never build or inhabit the upper stories. (Maybe he would just live down there in the basement, with Ayn Rand! Or with her books anyway.)

    Building the upper stories would involve: Making sure that individual community members always have free (meaning you don't ever pay for it) access to the most basic human needs -- clean water, clean air, food, clothing, shelter, living space on the earth, and basic knowledge.

    And health care is one type of basic cultural knowledge, and the healthy community would rightly make sure that individuals would always be able to access that knowledge and put it to use in their own lives.

    Many people would find rightful livelihoods in providing such knowledge (and other basics like food) to others in the community.

    But profiting by monopolizing and commodifying any of those basic necessaries would be seen as bad behavior, coming from a bad intention towards the community as a whole. In other words that sort of "business" would be seen as crime.

  14. You are exactly "right". I'm a Viet Nam veteran. I could access the VA for healthcare. I chose not to. I have no faith in the VA(history will back up why). I don't currently have healhcare and choose not to. Can't afford it for starters. The markets are rigged. If I need help, I will shop for it on a cash basis. Obama, socialism doesn't work.

  15. You can agree with the point of Michael Labeit’s article while rejecting using Craig Biddle to make it.

    Biddle and his Objective Standard journal are associated with the so-called Ayn Rand Institute. You can read them endorsing government institutionalized torture at

  16. Michael,

    It's certainly not worth getting into a humongous philosophical debate with you right now but I do want to point out two things I think are sticky:

    Liberty refers to freedom to control your body.

    That's tautological.

    Property refers to freedom to control anything else.

    And that's based upon self-ownership, because if you do not have property of yourself you can not claim property in anything you mix your labor with.

    What property could you ever have if you ultimately could be owned by someone else? The control of that property would technically revert to the entity that owned you.

    Self-ownership is the primary right and all others stem from it.

    I enjoyed your essay immensely and even more so I am enjoying seeing these collectivists getting agitated about it.

  17. "negative rights" I mean (first paragraph

  18. There is a huge difference between what is needed for life and existence in society, and what will make that existence more pleasant. A human being NEEDS water and food to sustain life. I do not NEED a loan to buy a Porsche. In our society, which is based upon the ability to trade things for goods and services, the only things NEEDED for continued daily existence is food and water, shelter from the elements, and health care. Without these things, one is doomed to a "brutish and short existence".

    The reason I include education as a inherent right (this is not a natural right, this is a social right, the same as being free from discrimination and persecution based on skin color or religion) is because without an education, the ability to provide for ONE OWNS NATURAL RIGHTS becomes extremely difficult, if not impossible (this is off course assuming a function economy and work to be had if one wants it).Michael Labeit, despite the name calling, misses the fundamental argument of my post. A social CONTRACT exists between the individual and society (government). If the argument is that government has violated that contract, I am more then willing to coincide that argument. If the argument is that the government has proven itself inept at managing any far reaching social programs, again I'll coincide that point.However, the question raised is "Is there a fundamental right to health care?". If that is the question, then we have to ask the question what is the role of modern society in our day to day lives. This is a moral question. If you believe that society's role is to simple protect the individual from external outside forces (invading countries), then the logical conclusion to that is that all our tax dollars should go to providing for a standing, non aggressive army. That means no police, no firefighters, public hospitals, universities, schools or any of the various other institutions provided using the tax payer dollar. Really, the ideal state would be to build a giant fence around the country, and have roving bands of groups Mad Max style. If however, you think that the reason we form societies is so that we may benefit from being in large groups, free from the basic harms of anarchy, then you think government has an obligation to provide the items mentioned above. If we grant that one CAN NOT survive in modern society without health care, the same as one can not survive without food or housing, we accept that denial of health care is tantamount to a death sentence. Of course, if you are such a proponent of Ann Rand, this is not a bad thing. She herself argued it would be far more expedient to kill the sick and infirm then to care for them, since they are not productive. The cost vs benefit analysis when applied to morality often leads us to the most immoral of ideas (kill the sick, old, infirm, those deemed undesirable to society). That is the logical conclusion to

  19. is the logical conclusion to Ann Rands theory of selfishness. That you only do what will only benefit you. Why contribute to a charity beyond that it might make you feel good? I love how people that propose a society in which since you benefit from that society, you must give back, is deemed a collectivist. Its not an argument that you must give all that you own, or that property rights don't exist. The argument is that without the protection of the state, those rights wouldn't matter, because protection would not be enforced. to put it a simpler way, without the state providing for the poorest amongst us, we would sooner or later devolve into a anarchy state, since you can be assured that sooner or later the poor, always outnumbering the rich, will simply take what they want. So in reality, the argument loses on two points. 1) Since the social contract exists between the individual and the state, there are things BOTH have to give to each other to maintain that contract. Just as the individual can withdraw from the state, effectively destroying it, I would argue without the state, the individual can not survive. Its not collectivism, it acknowledgment that in a society, no one earns anything or accomplishes anything in a vacuum. The least any moral society can do is provide the basis for life for those that cant provide it for themselves. Unless those that are against this would like to take nazi plan for dealing with these "undesirables"?

  20. Quote: “A right, according to the great thinker Ayn Rand, is “a moral principle defining and sanctioning a man’s freedom of action in a social context.” There are three primary rights: the right to life, to liberty, and to property.”
    Bollocks. Ayn Rand is only regarded as a great thinker by those who are totally unfamiliar with classical origins of the American Republic, the great Christian humanist tradition that created the modern world and even Platonic and Confucian basis of all civilization.
    Right, as a substantive (my right, his right), designates the object of justice. It has nothing to with freedom but rather right is called a moral or legal authority, because it emanates from a law which assigns to one the dominion over the thing and imposes on others the obligation to respect this dominion. What law? The law of necessary relations for human civilization and the nature of those relations change over time. The rights of civilized man are not fixed but change according to what necessary for civilization because if there is no civilization there is no necessary relations among men and if no necessary obligation and if no obligation exists then nor does a corresponding right.
    Now let’s take on the three fake definition of rights outline by Philosopher Craig Biddle: “"The right to life is the right to act as one’s life requires—which means, on the judgment of one’s mind. The right to liberty is the right to be free from coercive interference—so that one can act on the judgment of one’s mind. The right to property is the right to keep, use, and dispose of the product of one’s effort—which one does by acting on one’s judgment."
    This is totally wrong undermines the entire idea of human civilization. The right to life is tied to concept of “human dignity” not “necessity of action” because an animal acts as its life requires but no animal has a “right to life.” The right to life means a right to a human existence that dignifies the potentiality that human species represent and thus is located equally in all human beings and that is why the Declaration says “all men are created equal.”
    If the right to life represented what Mr. Biddle says then there could be no basis for saying “all men are created equal” if the right to life was based on the individual capacity to act on the basis of intellectual judgment because all men have different intellectual capacities.
    Rather, the basis of the right to life is the participatory process in the potentiality of the human civilization and development of culture made possible what Cantor calls this the "transfinite" quality of the human mind; Nicolaus of Cusa and others call it being "in the image of God."
    Right to life is not the right to live like an animal just doing what is necessary to survive but rather the right to participate in your nation’s history it’s culture, it’s language, it’s development because you are a human being with a human dignity thus certain economic rights arise as civilization develops in order to maintain this right to life such a right to Health Care because without that right the ability of people to participate as dignified human beings in civilization starts being diminished and thus civilization starts to be lost in that society.
    Therefore the proper legislation for certain “internal improvements” is therefore necessary and ought to be done and by legislation the General Welfare can be promoted.

    Continued on next post.

  21. Now to false notion of liberty being freedom from “coercive interference” so that one can act on individual judgment.
    Now notice paradoxes being created here. How does define “coercive interference” a way that doesn’t involve an individual judgment? If whatever constitutes “coercive interference” is a universal and fixed absolute then by what means does is a human action based on individual judgment if by definition it order not to be “coercive interference” must adhere to some mysterious, fixed and universal standard? By definition, any principle that so universal and fixed must include all such possible future human action for without such completeness of knowledge then how can we know such a principle designates an action as “coercive interference”? So then how is human action free and liberated if by definition it must conform to apriori criteria?
    So if what constitutes “coercive interference” if apriori means that freedom is impossible according to “coercive interference” conception of Liberty i.e. often called by others “negative liberty” then what constitutes “coercive interference” is therefore a subject human judgment and therefore by what means does one claim that what he thinks constitutes “coercive interference” when in contradiction to another individual more valid than the former’s claim? Only an appeal to authority and how does one establish an authority only by appealing to a fixed standard (been there before) or arbitrarily according to force, or bloodline, class, race, religion so the logical result according to the “coercive interference” definition the only way to liberty is the establishment of a monarchist system or totalitarian system.
    But it get worse from the simple fact “coercive interference” doesn’t stop anyone from exercising action based on judgment unless you limit your idea “coercive interference” to not murdering people just because I get robbed doesn’t mean that I stop making judgments about my life.
    Now what is proper conception of liberty? Let’s start John Winthrop who help found Massachusetts Bay Colony and the principle of that Colonial Government formed the basis of the American Constitution had this to say about liberty.
    Quote from John Winthrop: “For the other point concerning liberty, I observe a great mistake in the country about that. There is a twofold liberty, natural (I mean as our nature is now corrupt) and civil or federal. The first is common to man with beasts and other creatures. By this, man, as he stands in relation to man simply, hath liberty to do what he lists; it is a liberty to evil as well as to good. This liberty is incompatible and inconsistent with authority and cannot endure the least restraint of the most just authority. The exercise and maintaining of this liberty makes men grow more evil and in time to be worse than brute beasts: omnes sumus licentia deteriores. This is that great enemy of truth and peace, that wild beast, which all of the ordinances of God are bent against, to restrain and subdue it. The other kind of liberty I call civil or federal; it may also be termed moral, in reference to the covenant between God and man, in the moral law, and the politic covenants and constitutions amongst men themselves. This liberty is the proper end and object of authority and cannot subsist without it; and it is a liberty to that only which is good, just, and honest. This liberty you are to stand for, with the hazard (not only of your goods, but) of your lives, if need be. Whatsoever crosseth this is not authority but a distemper thereof. This liberty is maintained and exercised in a way of subjection to authority; it is of the same kind of liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free.”

    Continuing next post.

  22. Along the same line of thinking by another great philosopher Pope Leo XIII wrote an piece excellent showing the correct way to think about Liberty called Libertas On the Nature of Human Liberty.
    I think folks you read it here:
    For now I’m quote this section:
    “Such, then, being the condition of human liberty, it necessarily stands in need of light and strength to direct its actions to good and to restrain them from evil. Without this, the freedom of our will would be our ruin. First of all, there must be law; that is, a fixed rule of teaching what is to be done and what is to be left undone. This rule cannot affect the lower animals in any true sense, since they act of necessity, following their natural instinct, and cannot of themselves act in any other way. On the other hand, as was said above, he who is free can either act or not act, can do this or do that, as he pleases, because his judgment precedes his choice. And his judgment not only decides what is right or wrong of its own nature, but also what is practically good and therefore to be chosen, and what is practically evil and therefore to be avoided. In other words, the reason prescribes to the will what it should seek after or shun, in order to the eventual attainment of man's last end, for the sake of which all his actions ought to be performed. This ordination of reason is called law. In man's free will, therefore, or in the moral necessity of our voluntary acts being in accordance with reason, lies the very root of the necessity of law. Nothing more foolish can be uttered or conceived than the notion that, because man is free by nature, he is therefore exempt from law.”
    One can clearly see that traditional and American notion of Liberty is one where object of liberty is improvement in life in the highest moral sense what Liebniz called the “pursuit of happiness” and therefore liberty if not some indifferent license to act for one’s personal pleasure but rather freedom of creative action needed to improve everyone’s life.
    The philosophy here is the logic the slave holder’s Confederate constitution and slavery defender John Locke and not the logic of the American Constitution. Benjamin Franklin saw Thomas Jefferson had originally put “property” into the Declaration of Independence he went over crossed that out and pursuit of happiness instead. Franklin did this because he understood the danger that John Locke represented to the cause of freedom and I can go into the history of John Locke’s war on the Colonies in another post.
    There is no right to property and the Constitution make that very clear by giving the power of Eminent Domain to the State.
    Let me quote Benjamin Franklin on the issue of property:
    “All Property, indeed, except the Savage's temporary Cabin, his Bow, his Matchcoat, and other little Acquisitions, absolutely necessary for his Subsistence, seems to me to be the Creature of public Convention. Hence the Public has the Right of Regulating Descents, and all other Conveyances of Property, and even of limiting the Quantity and the Uses of it. All the Property that is necessary to a Man, for the Conservation of the Individual and the Propagation of the Species, is his natural Right, which none can justly deprive him of: But all Property superfluous to such purposes is the Property of the Publick, who, by their Laws, have created it, and who may therefore by other Laws dispose of it, whenever the Welfare of the Publick shall demand such Disposition. He that does not like civil Society on these Terms, let him retire and live among Savages. He can have no right to the benefits of Society, who will not pay his Club towards the Support of it.”
    So clearly the founders did not believe in property as a human right but rather property exist only as a political right necessary for the higher goal humanity’s pursuit of happiness and is therefore subject to the Common Good or the General Welfare.

  23. Andy,

    Rand discusses egoism prior to rights, as ethics is prior to politics. Rights don't suppose selfishness - she argues that selfishness must be tackled before rights, that selfishness supposes rights.

  24. I think the nazi comment is taking the arguement a little far, as that comparison also suggests malice.

    Ann Rand's arguement isn't malicious in nature, it is 'self'ish - I use quotes to show I don't mean so in the negative connotation. We have no inherent need to give to others. We have no inherent reason to do so, unless we gain from it, even communal endeavors are all towards everyone's gain. We are all 'self'ish in that regard.

    Health Care is a provision of the state to improve the right of life and property. It is a service. Services cost money, it is a social service because society works together through education, taxes, and infrastructure in order to provide this service. Do not confuse social with socialist. What this means is that health care is an industry, not a right. We have no right to industry.

    The money to provide this service must come from somewhere. Here in Canada it is state provided, and we pay higher levels of taxes because of it.

    I am in full support of state provided health care for it's residents, but it isn't free. Nothing in this world is anymore.

  25. Mr. Wenzel, you really know how to stir up the slavers.

  26. Credit on this one goes to Michael Labeit. This is his masterpiece.

  27. Theodore Dalrymple chimes in on the issue here

  28. Dang Mr. Wenzel, did the post-grad/ young professional OFA have a "Post-Ignorant-Replies-To-All-Haters-Of-Our-Lord-And-Master-Obama" night again?

    They used so many big words I was hoping they knew what they were talking about.

    I can see them all now- white, like too white, because they live in the Northern USSA, and guilty as hell for what (none of) their great-great-great-great-grandfather did to somebody else, all sitting around on last year's IKEA, because it would look bad to buy new this year, eating tofu bullshit while trying to not appear racist to their token black "friend" ever since that TIME article came out, and spitting mad at how those conservative Jesus-freaks are out causing trouble again, and now their starting to gather at the gates.

    Trouble is, they have no clue that the gates keep them in, and we just want to get in and remove the bastards who keep slinging flaming arrows at us toiling in the fields to produce a life for ourselves.