Well, the debate with spun is proving interesting. Rather than lose the thread I'm moving to my journal.
"Yet, according to your interpretation all other property is public. It follows that the constituent elements from which I am made were once public property. Thus either I am public property, or through possession of the elements of which I am made they become mine and thus not all property is theft."
False dichotomy. You don't own you. No one owns you. You aren't the materials you are made up of. On average, in seven years time you won't have a single same atom in your body that you have today.
Wait a second....
Is there such a thing a public property? From your perspective it sounds as though you believe this to be the case, and that all property springs from public property. How can this be reconciled with your statement above? "You don't own you. No one owns you." My body is property, as a tangible physical item it must be.
So working from that assumption, I must be either public or private?
Unless you think that there is no such thing as property, or do you think there are two classes,
property and UN-property?
You aren't the materials you are made up of. On average, in seven years time you won't have a single same atom in your body that you have today.
You are dodging the point here IMO. I may not be the same atoms seven years from now, but for the purposes of argument let us take the state of my body at this particular moment. I am made up of a certain set of atoms, which for the next few moments at least will remain 99% the same. By using these atoms I am depriving you and all other parts of the universe of choice. I do in effect have temporary control of them. What better definition is there of ownership than control of a thing?
Please expound upon your view that I do not own myself....
Because before someone owned the resource, everyone shared it. Anyone could use it.
Yet at the moment they use a thing do they not control it and thus own it?
"Natural rights would then be the unabriged natural abilities which do not conflict between individuals."
Perhaps a clearer statement of my position needs to be made. At some point in our history man lived by unwritten "laws". Most likely in a tribal-village status. What I am trying to get to is the very bedrock of the social contract when mankind lived the closest to his natural state.
Besides that, the right of property does conflict between individuals. You take it, I can't use it, why should I agree to that?
If it is property which you did not know existed or were unable to use, how can you or anyone else make a claim?
You may not agree with it. This is why we have conflict. Society is an attempt to judge how reasonable our conflicting claims are and to protect the better of the two.
For example: let us take the example of a farmer in africa. If both of us were to go there and try to use his lands, chances are the farmer AND his neighbors would think our claim most unreasonable. They would most likely defend his claim over ours. We would expect our neighbors to do the same for our property located here.
Look, I'm not saying the concept of property is bad, I just want to hear some good reasons for it.
The best reason I can think of is survival.
Through the ownership of propery I can better gauge my chances of survival for myself and my offspring.
As it is, I think of property as a contract. The rest of us agree that you can exclude us from it in exchange for you upholding the same right in us, and contributing to the common good.
I would take the stance that defense of property is a contract. I agree to help defend what you claim is yours if you help defend my claim. The common good is that together we stand a better chance of defending our own property.
I used to be a hard core anarchist. Not the bomb throwing kind (a media myth to discredit the movement) but the Trotsky kind.
I am somewhere between Minarchist and CLASSICAL Liberal.
However, I think for self governance to work, things need to be far more equitable and fair than they are now.
Not defending the current system, yet who said life was equitable or ever would be?
There are huge imbalances in the distribution of wealth that do not arise from merit.
I assume you mean by inheritence???
I admit I am uncomfortable with the current wealth distribution, yet should one not have the expectation of passing one's hard earned prosperity to your progeny?
The excellent and hard working should receive more than the lazy and stupid. But no one is worth hundreds or thousands of times more than another.
Yet there must be cases where this is so. Example a "peasant" farmer who is merely self sufficient versus a doctor who invents a new medical device which saves millions of lives.
I agree that we tend to place these valuations in the wrong areas IMO. (Lawyers, Actors, Atheletes) Yet they are voluntary so it is a true quandry.
Property rights are important for a healthy society. but it is important to realize where they really come from. They don't come from our ability to take and hold property by force.
You think so? I would say the basis for all rights is your ability either individually or collectively to defend them. If we are unable to defend our rights, then they will be taken away the first time we come into conflict over them. Indeed if I rely on society to protect my claim to property it will be done through force if needed.
Wait, you mean everyplace in the world is owned by someone, and you are excluded from most of them? Oops.
I am excluded from much of the world because of the nebulous Public ownersip of property which nation-states claim. They have laid claim rightly or wrongly through the fact of "being there first" for the most part, in addition to the ability to defend those claims with force.
You are free to leave the country at any time. Start your own.
Really? try to give up your citizenship without gaining another. You will be unable to leave the country (short of sneaking out). You will be unable to find work. In addition the US now has laws claiming if you give up citizenship you still owe the US taxes for up to 10 years. I hardly find that voluntary.