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  #1  
Old 04-08-2016, 03:22 AM
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Default Basic Rights


In the guns and gods thread Mohican said that gun ownership was a right bestowed on him by god.

What rights do we think, regardless of who (or what) gives them, are inalienable (apart from guns!!)?

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Old 04-08-2016, 07:40 AM
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The right to live a healthy life into old age, for one. US Hospitals want to charge you three arms and sixteen legs, plus a head or three to keep you healthy.
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Old 04-08-2016, 08:42 AM
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I don't consider healthcare, access to food and shelter and other material necessities to be a right.

That would mean that if you can't pay for it, and it's a right then it has to be provided.

And if someone else has to pay for it, sometimes unwillingly, then it's not a right. But it's easier to get a majority of people to go along with providing it if it's called a right and not an entitlement.
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Old 04-08-2016, 10:02 AM
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Originally Posted by Mohican View Post
a right and not an entitlement.
A distinction without a difference.

When you're arrested the officer doesn't say "You have an entitlement to a lawyer".
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Old 04-08-2016, 10:32 AM
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Both liberals and conservatives use the words "right" and "entitlement" in ways that appeal to their constituencies.

Liberals attach the word "right" to everything from internet access to vague ideas like the "right" to not feel threatened by automatic weapons.

Conservatives use "entitlement" as a code word that means lazy people getting something they don't deserve.

So both words have been appropriated to make it "easier...to get people to go along" with or be against something, depending on how they are used and who is using them.

Just more beside the point semantics and B.S.

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Old 04-08-2016, 06:36 PM
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I was using the wiki version of entitlement
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Entitlement

An entitlement is a government program guaranteeing access to some benefit by members of a specific group and based on established rights or by legislation.

Viewing entitlements in that light they are different than rights.

Wiki does go on and chases it's tail by associating rights with entitlements, and implies that government is the guarantor of rights and therefore rights are also entitlements.

If government is the guarantor of rights then you have no rights, just what privilege is doled out under the auspices of rights. Part of the problem is that languages change over time, so the present day meaning of words in a charter are different, and because government is like a noxious gas - without a definite container it grows and spreads until it is too thin to be effective.
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Old 04-08-2016, 10:56 PM
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Originally Posted by Mohican View Post
I don't consider healthcare, access to food and shelter and other material necessities to be a right.
But owning a gun is? That's one crazy fucked up world you live in.
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Old 04-09-2016, 03:27 AM
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I don't consider healthcare, access to food and shelter and other material necessities to be a right.
And I respectfully disagree. Constitutionally (in the US), we all have a right to life, which means we get to choose how we live. I don't think anyone chooses to die because they can't afford to pay to keep themselves from dying. So death is chosen for that person simply because s/he can't afford to pay the exorbitant price of needed medicine to keep him/her alive. As for access to food and shelter: again, constitutionally (in the US), we all have a right to life, which means we choose how we live. Not being having access to food and shelter . . . that person's being stripped the right to live how s/he sees fit (which means not starving or keeping out the elements on a daily basis). No? So why aren't those things basic rights when, constitutionally, we have the right to live and make our own choices? (Just curious. I sound angry, but I'm really not! Lol)
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Old 04-09-2016, 03:41 AM
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Originally Posted by Mohican View Post
Viewing entitlements in that light they are different than rights.
Could you name a right you have that someone else doesn't have to pay for? Bearing in mind that the army and police force and courts and lawyers and prisons that protect your freedom all have a cost?

We're touching on the reasons for my anarchism here.

There is, in strict point of fact, no fundamental difference between the "right" to bear arms and the "right" to centrally-funded healthcare. The right to bear arms is protected by a police force and legal system funded by the taxpayer, and the right to centrally-funded healthcare is protected by nurses and doctors funded by the taxpayer.
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Old 04-09-2016, 06:36 AM
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If government is the guarantor of rights then you have no rights, just what privilege is doled out under the auspices of rights.
Bam! I think you're on to something... (Dammit, that "onto", "on to" resurfacing! Hope I got it right.)

So WE give government the money. We feed--They exist . . . and THEY are the guarantor of certain "rights" for us?

Wow. Shouldn't there be some kind of powerful citizen counsel override committee to checkmate the poor decisions, corruption, anarchy, "rights" stealing, use a guise to mirror democracy and falsely projecting freedom freeloading puppets?
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Old 04-09-2016, 08:26 AM
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Originally Posted by Non Serviam View Post
Could you name a right you have that someone else doesn't have to pay for? Bearing in mind that the army and police force and courts and lawyers and prisons that protect your freedom all have a cost?

We're touching on the reasons for my anarchism here.

There is, in strict point of fact, no fundamental difference between the "right" to bear arms and the "right" to centrally-funded healthcare. The right to bear arms is protected by a police force and legal system funded by the taxpayer, and the right to centrally-funded healthcare is protected by nurses and doctors funded by the taxpayer.


The right to bear arms may be partially be funded by legislature, most lot of "gun rights cases" are defended by private donations. The police here don't really defend my right to bear arms outside of the local sheriff (and governor) being sympathetic to personal RKBA.




In other areas during disasters local and state government forces actually tried to disarm people, (Think Southern Louisiana in Hurricane Katrina Aftermath) and any rights to bear arms was open defiance and people privately hiring legal council to go to bat for them in the Louisiana State Supreme Court .
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Last edited by Mohican; 04-09-2016 at 11:22 AM.. Reason: edited to moderate my comments to a degree
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Old 04-09-2016, 09:12 AM
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There are no rights without civil society, except the right to do whatever the hell you want, whenever.

Once there is a civil society, that society grants its members rights as administered and decided upon by the collective. This is a flawed process because people are flawed, and they also disagree about a lot of things. If anyone can think of a better way, let us know.

Entitlements as we call our social security system and some of the state run pension systems are things you pay into your whole working life. They aren't free.

Doctors and hospitals (mostly) will keep you from dying even if you have no money, and then pass the costs on in the form of higher prices to everyone else. We (the collective) are now trying to decide if it will be cheaper to fix everyone before their health hits crisis levels and we have to do it anyway. Lots of dead people laying around is a public health hazard.
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Old 04-09-2016, 09:21 AM
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Originally Posted by Mohican View Post
Wrong!

The right to bear arms may be partially be funded by legislature, most lot of "gun rights cases" are defended by private donations. The police here don't really defend my right to bear arms outside of the local sheriff.


Do you not understand the concept of direct and indirect costs?

Maybe if you live completely off the land, don't drive, fly, or use any services public or private, including the Internet, the phone system, television, etc. etc. etc. then you are part of a civil society, and the rights granted you were decided (and paid for-yes, I know you might use less than some) upon by all of us.
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Old 04-09-2016, 11:21 AM
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Yes, I understand direct and indirect costs. And it might partially negate my argument, but not really.

You really have to go original understanding and original intent. (I know, what the %^^& is original intent?)

The first 10 amendments, dubbed the bill of rights were as much or more a recognition of rights as a guarantor of rights. I can't think of too many instances where the national government determined it was a guarantor of rights until the fourteenth amendment was passed .

The ninth amendment makes this argument for me.

The founding generation were correct (although they got stuff wrong, too)

more later.....
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Old 04-09-2016, 01:14 PM
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So, I have a question... Why the adherence to original intent?

I agree most of the founders were brilliant men, but they were also products of their time. Flawed, exclusionary, without the ability to understand what we would become. I'm not faulting them for that, it would be impossible to have guessed where we would be in 2016.
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Old 04-10-2016, 01:14 AM
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Originally Posted by Mohican View Post
The right to bear arms may be partially be funded by legislature, most lot of "gun rights cases" are defended by private donations. The police here don't really defend my right to bear arms outside of the local sheriff (and governor) being sympathetic to personal RKBA.
Three responses instantly spring to mind.

Firstly, while the defence lawyer (are they called "attorneys" over there?) may be paid for by private donations, the judge who upholds your rights receives a salary. So does his clerk, and the janitor who mops the courtroom floor. So does the prison governor and the wardens and their janitors. Neither courtroom nor prison was built for free.

Secondly, you live in a country surrounded by other nations where guns are controlled. Your borders are defended by soldiers. They too receive salaries, and require weapons and vehicles, buildings, trainers, officers, a pay corps, and all the other support structures that enable a modern organisation to exist.

Thirdly, although you say the police don't enforce your gun rights, I expect that if I walked onto your property, picked the lock on your gun-safe and stole a firearm, the police would investigate.
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Old 04-10-2016, 01:54 AM
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What rights do we think, regardless of who (or what) gives them, are inalienable (apart from guns!!)?
No one else has any opinions on any other rights other than (supposedly) guns??
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Old 04-12-2016, 08:46 AM
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Originally Posted by Non Serviam View Post
Three responses instantly spring to mind.

Firstly, while the defence lawyer (are they called "attorneys" over there?) may be paid for by private donations, the judge who upholds your rights receives a salary. So does his clerk, and the janitor who mops the courtroom floor. So does the prison governor and the wardens and their janitors. Neither courtroom nor prison was built for free.

Secondly, you live in a country surrounded by other nations where guns are controlled. Your borders are defended by soldiers. They too receive salaries, and require weapons and vehicles, buildings, trainers, officers, a pay corps, and all the other support structures that enable a modern organisation to exist.

Thirdly, although you say the police don't enforce your gun rights, I expect that if I walked onto your property, picked the lock on your gun-safe and stole a firearm, the police would investigate.
To say that any money that has to be spent to protect a defined right makes it an entitlement is an argument that I hadn't considered, to be truthful. And it still doesn't make something that is really a right into an entitlement. It becomes a silly gotcha argument.

But since you made an argument, I will in kind give this some consideration.

1. The Judge and his staff receive a salary whether they hear a gun case or a case of stolen livestock, etc. Some variable cost may happen on a case by case basis but we budget for judges and staff to be there, whether they hear one case or thirty.

And the cost to the legals system to hear an RKBA case, once amortized across the system is small compared to providing food, shelter, medical care etc.

Again, in cases of natural disasters officials with bad intentions have seized firearms. People that kept there guns did so outside that officials system. They asserted and kept their rights for themselves.

As a percentage of budget, all DOJ and Federal court budgets approximate 1% of the budget. That's to "adjudicate all justice" at a national level. I'm researching # actual "gun rights" cases in the federal courts in 2015, but for arguments sake let's put it at 10%, which would be high. So justice department might spend .1% of the national budget deciding "gun rights", which isn't necessarily a defense of gun rights.

Subtracting things that get paid into, "other welfare" - is about 10% of the US National Budget.

So based on things monetary, could we call the right to keep and bear 99.9 % right, .1% entitlement?

And that the things I view as entitlements versus rights are much more deeply funded.

All of this still begs the question - if money has to spent to "defend a right", does it really stop being a right and start being an entitlement?

Or, if you subscribe to the collective, the agreed upon government becoming the arbiter of rights then are they rights? No, they are then privilege.

2. Troops on the border are there to protect my rights as much as troops in Iraq and Afghanistan are protecting my rights, including gun rights. This number is fairly close to the grade point average in Animal House. There aren't any invaders from Canada trying to get my guns, and on the southern border it's not about protecting rights.

3. If the police return guns after a theft they are not doing it to protect my right to keep and bear arms but because they are returning property. Same as returning a stolen car, a diamond ring, or sheep stolen by a Brit with bad intentions. When guns are stolen it often takes a good while to be returned. Sometimes stolen firearms are never returned from police custody.
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Old 04-12-2016, 09:11 AM
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Originally Posted by brianpatrick View Post
So, I have a question... Why the adherence to original intent?

I agree most of the founders were brilliant men, but they were also products of their time. Flawed, exclusionary, without the ability to understand what we would become. I'm not faulting them for that, it would be impossible to have guessed where we would be in 2016.
That's a good question. And a discussion of the flaws of "the founders", and also their positive's would be fun.

I think that things constitutional should be at the very least understood in the light of original intent, through the language of the day. That way you have a bedrock, an immovable starting point. Then you can move or amend things.

I'm not even so much a fan of the Constitution itself, and shake my head at how it is worshiped as some form of secular religion. But it is supposed to be the charter, so follow, or amend it, or agree to scrap it, but don't ignore it, don't interpret it via the changing meaning of words, and don't allow unaccountable, unelected people to tell us what it really means.
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Old 04-12-2016, 09:19 AM
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There actually are no natural rights. We can try to have the ability to do certain things. When a group of people band together and kick everyone else's ass for a while, they get to call the shots during that time, and calling things 'rights' and enforcing them is their prerogative.

The 'rights' we enjoy are the result of generous-minded men deciding that all members of a group should enjoy what only part of the group has the ability to provide (or defend). When the situation changes to where the strong among us can no longer force others to give us the considerations we call rights, we will no longer have them
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Old 04-12-2016, 09:22 AM
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If you believe in a God, or the Christian God/Trinity as I do, then there are natural rights. And more natural duties than rights.

If you don't believe in God or any god or gods then you probably have to take the view that rights are granted from whatever hierarchy you live under. To some extent.
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Old 04-12-2016, 09:42 AM
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Originally Posted by Mohican View Post
To say that any money that has to be spent to protect a defined right makes it an entitlement is an argument that I hadn't considered, to be truthful. And it still doesn't make something that is really a right into an entitlement. It becomes a silly gotcha argument.
I thought your position was that if the government provides it at the taxpayer's expense then it's an entitlement rather than a right. If so then my answer is that you don't have any rights, and I stand by it.

If not then I don't understand this distinction between rights and entitlements.

I also don't follow the connection between rights and God. I'd be amazed if there was a commandment about weapons.

The Book of Armaments, Chapter III

1 And Jesus turned unto the assembled people, that were about Him, and said unto them:
2 Thou shalt not confiscate thy neighbour's sword, yea, and neither shalt thou take away his spear:
3 His battleaxe shalt thou not take, nor his bow, nor his arrows in their quiver;
4 For a forcibly-disarmed man is an abomination in My sight...
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Old 04-12-2016, 09:51 AM
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Originally Posted by Non Serviam View Post
I thought your position was that if the government provides it at the taxpayer's expense then it's an entitlement rather than a right. If so then my answer is that you don't have any rights, and I stand by it.

If not then I don't understand this distinction between rights and entitlements.

I also don't follow the connection between rights and God. I'd be amazed if there was a commandment about weapons.

The Book of Armaments, Chapter III

1 And Jesus turned unto the assembled people, that were about Him, and said unto them:
2 Thou shalt not confiscate thy neighbour's sword, yea, and neither shalt thou take away his spear:
3 His battleaxe shalt thou not take, nor his bow, nor his arrows in their quiver;
4 For a forcibly-disarmed man is an abomination in My sight...

Well, we are told to put on the whole armor of God, also told to buy a sword if we don't have one.

And there is much about freewill, choice, and consequence.
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Old 04-12-2016, 10:04 AM
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Originally Posted by Devon View Post
And I respectfully disagree. Constitutionally (in the US), we all have a right to life, which means we get to choose how we live. I don't think anyone chooses to die because they can't afford to pay to keep themselves from dying. So death is chosen for that person simply because s/he can't afford to pay the exorbitant price of needed medicine to keep him/her alive. As for access to food and shelter: again, constitutionally (in the US), we all have a right to life, which means we choose how we live. Not being having access to food and shelter . . . that person's being stripped the right to live how s/he sees fit (which means not starving or keeping out the elements on a daily basis). No? So why aren't those things basic rights when, constitutionally, we have the right to live and make our own choices? (Just curious. I sound angry, but I'm really not! Lol)
Life, Liberty and the pursuit of happiness was something Thomas Jefferson scrawled in the Declaration of Independence, where Thomas Jefferson told the king that he was responsible for all the messed up treatment of the 'Murrican colonies from the Parliament.....

Go through the first ten amendments and - dubbed the bill of rights, and find a direct "right to life"....
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Old 04-13-2016, 12:42 AM
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If the founding fathers had a crystal ball and could look at America today, do you think they might have written the constitution in a different way?
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Old 04-13-2016, 12:54 AM
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I claim the basic right to take the piss out of nitwits.

Or is that an entitlement?
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Old 04-13-2016, 01:00 AM
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Whichever, as long as you're prepared to receive piss-taking.
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Old 04-13-2016, 08:37 AM
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Originally Posted by wyf View Post
If the founding fathers had a crystal ball and could look at America today, do you think they might have written the constitution in a different way?
Thomas Jefferson would be surprised that the US is still together. He thought there would be a split, but he wrote about an East/West split versus a north/south split. And coming off a revolution he thought there would be revolutions more often. There was talk at the end of Washington's 2nd term about a north south split and Jefferson was one of the people who held the union together at the time - or at least talked the southern states from bolting. I'd like to think that he would chose splitting at the time if he saw things today

The Founding Fathers were not a monolithic group - and the Constitution was barely ratified - and only after more shenanigans than were used to pass Obamacare aka The Affordable Care Act. A large amount of the founding generation was bemoaning the out of control Federal Government at the time of their deaths. (so in the 1820-1840 time frame)

The group know as the Federalist were ok with the expansion of government, and for many it was their end goal. The fact that Congress did not vacate the Supreme Court after Marbury versus Madison indicates that the fix was in early on, and that to many the Constitution could be considered as pliable, as long as "the right people" were the ones reshaping the framework.

A good essay would be "when did we start leaving the rails".

For some reason, Wyf, your question reminds me of a question a friend asked me last year

If John of Patmos spent a half hour on the internet, would the Book of Revelations be the same or entirely different?

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If John of Patmos would browse the internet today for half an hour, I don't know if the Book of Revelations would be entirely different or entirely the same.

Last edited by Mohican; 04-13-2016 at 08:58 AM..
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Old 04-13-2016, 10:57 AM
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But you still avoided answering the question.
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Old 04-13-2016, 03:58 PM
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Okay, I'll bite.

We should have a right to receive fresh, floride-free water in all the states. We pay for it and drink the tainted crap, at the very least we should have the right to remove a harmful additive.
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