Thursday, June 23, 2005

Individualism = Selfishness

Ok, so that was not all of what I wrote, yet EU Rota decided to leave off the last part, which was "= Hobbes' state of nature."

Individualism = Selfishness = Hobbes' state of nature

Now, this may not seem like a big deal, because technically, since I have equated all of these items, the two he wrote are equal and his statement is true. However, since this is not mathematics and I was using the equation as a literary device, it was entirely unfair that he left out the last item, which was the exclamation point of the equation. The point is that government is created to combat the state of war in which man lives in his natural state. Hobbes says:
So that in the nature of man, we find three principall causes of quarrel. First, Competition; Secondly, Diffidence; Thirdly, Glory...Out Of Civil States, There Is Alwayes Warre Of Every One Against Every One. Hereby it is manifest, that during the time men live without a common Power to keep them all in awe, they are in that condition which is called Warre; and such a warre, as is of every man, against every man.
As those who hate government (excluding anarchists, who hate everything) want to get rid of it in their lives, we are left to wonder if they have truly thought it out. Without government to alleviate the inequalities resulting from "Social Darwinism", the fierce competition that ensues leads to a lust for more- more property, more space, and more power. Man's lust for power is the most frightening of all human attributes, as demonstrated in the rise of such dictators as Saddamn and Stalin. (That and also dictators have had a strange tendency to have been nerds in high school.)

People who promote the "war on individualism" farce should realize that it is not hatred for individualism, per se, but a promotion of law and order so that we may not fall into the Hobbesian state of nature. "Individualists", if I may so call them, are like the brats in the classroom who won't share the toys at recess. There aren't enough balls in the world for everyone to have one. We are forced to live together; we might as well make it as easy as possible for all of us.

However, once government starts encroaching upon essential and basic rights, like the right for a place to live, that is when it has gone too far. EU Rota is right to criticize the Supreme Court's decision to expand
the right of local governments to seize private property under eminent domain, ruling that people's homes and businesses -- even those not considered blighted -- can be taken against their will for private development if the seizure serves a broadly defined "public use."
Now, this is a strange predicament the right faces. On the one hand, there are the corporations pushing for the rights to take this land, waterfront property, and use it for "economic development." The corporations just want to make a profit; we know this. The development of the land will bring economic development to the community; we know this, too. On the other hand, there is the libertarian faction of the right that is able to look through the greed of the corporations to see how wrong this is.

I could say, "Why don't the people just take their compensation and move? Isn't that what the right tells people to do who don't have health insurance at their jobs? Get a new job?" but I won't, because I just can't get over the fact that people are losing what is theirs. Honestly, I can see tearing down abandoned warehouses or rat-infested dumps, but people's homes? Really, though, why are people entitled to property but not to health insurance? Isn't their health more important than owning something? I mean, you can't own something when you're dead. But I digress...

The Supreme Court has made a serious mistake in this decision. I think it is something both the right and the left can agree on.

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