Skip to comments.Voting-Who Needs It, if Government isn't the problem?
Posted on 10/11/2011 10:25:03 AM PDT by Vintage Freeper
Voting-Who Needs It, if Government isn't the problem?
"It is impossible to introduce into society a greater change and a greater evil than this:
the conversion of the law into an instrument of plunder." Frederic Bastiat, 1850
Excerpted from Fee.org's pdf version of Bastiat's The Law, pp. 10-18
"....But universal suffrage using the word in its strictest sense is not one of those sacred dogmas which it is a crime to examine or doubt. In fact, serious objections may be made to universal suffrage.
"In the first place the word universal conceals a gross fallacy. For example, there are 36 million people in France. Thus, to make the right of suffrage universal, there should be 36 million voters. But the most extended system permits only 9 million people to vote. Three persons out of four are excluded. And more than this, they are excluded by the fourth. This fourth person advances the principle of incapacity as his reason for excluding the others.
"Universal suffrage means, then, universal suffrage for those who are capable. But there remains this question of fact: Who is capable? Are minors, females, insane persons, and persons who have committed certain major crimes the only ones to be determined incapable?
"The Reason Why Voting Is Restricted
"A closer examination of the subject shows us the motive which causes the right of suffrage to be based upon the supposition of incapacity. The motive is that the elector or voter does not exercise this right for himself alone, but for everybody. The most extended elective system and the most restricted elective system are alike in this respect. They differ only in respect to what constitutes incapacity. It is not a difference of principle, but merely a difference of degree. If, as the republicans of our present-day Greek and Roman schools of thought pretend, the right of suffrage arrives with one's birth, it would be an injustice for adults to prevent women and children from voting. Why are they prevented? Because they are presumed to be incapable. And why is incapacity a motive for exclusion? Because it is not the voter alone who suffers the consequences of his vote; because each vote touches and affects everyone in the entire community; because the people in the community have a right to demand some safeguards concerning the acts upon which their welfare and existence depend.
"The Answer Is to Restrict the Law
"I know what might be said in answer to this; what the objections might be. But this is not the place to exhaust a controversy of this nature. I wish merely to observe here that this controversy over universal suffrage (as well as most other political questions) which agitates, excites, and overthrows nations, would lose nearly all of its importance if the law had always been what it ought to be. In fact, if law were restricted to protecting all persons, all liberties, and all properties; if law were nothing more than the organized combination of the individual's right to self defense; if law were the obstacle, the check, the punisher of all oppression and plunder is it likely that we citizens would then argue much about the extent of the franchise?
"Under these circumstances, is it likely that the extent of the right to vote would endanger that supreme good, the public peace? Is it likely that the excluded classes would refuse to peaceably await the coming of their right to vote? Is it likely that those who had the right to vote would jealously defend their privilege? If the law were confined to its proper functions, everyone's interest in the law would be the same. Is it not clear that, under these circumstances, those who voted could not inconvenience those who did not vote?
"The Fatal Idea of Legal Plunder
"But on the other hand, imagine that this fatal principle has been introduced: Under the pretense of organization, regulation, protection, or encouragement, the law takes property from one person and gives it to another; the law takes the wealth of all and gives it to a few whether farmers, manufacturers, ship owners, artists, or comedians. Under these circumstances, then certainly every class will aspire to grasp the law, and logically so.
"The excluded classes will furiously demand their right to vote and will overthrow society rather than not to obtain it...."
"Perverted Law Causes Conflict
"As long as it is admitted that the law may be diverted from its true purpose that it may violate property instead of protecting it then everyone will want to participate in making the law, either to protect himself against plunder or to use it for plunder. Political questions will always be prejudicial, dominant, and all-absorbing. There will be fighting at the door of the Legislative Palace, and the struggle within will be no less furious....
"Is there any need to offer proof that this odious perversion of the law is a perpetual source of hatred and discord; that it tends to destroy society itself?...
"Two Kinds of Plunder
"....I do not think that illegal plunder, such as theft or swindling which the penal code defines, anticipates, and punishes can be called socialism. It is not this kind of plunder that systematically threatens the foundations of society....The war against illegal plunder has been fought since the beginning of the world. Long before the Revolution of February 1848 long before the appearance even of socialism itself France had provided police, judges, gendarmes, prisons, dungeons, and scaffolds for the purpose of fighting illegal plunder. The law itself conducts this war, and it is my wish and opinion that the law should always maintain this attitude toward plunder.
"The Law Defends Plunder
"But it does not always do this. Sometimes the law defends plunder and participates in it. Thus the beneficiaries are spared the shame, danger, and scruple which their acts would otherwise involve. Sometimes the law places the whole apparatus of judges, police, prisons, and gendarmes at the service of the plunderers, and treats the victim when he defends himself as a criminal. In short, there is a legal plunder....
"How to Identify Legal Plunder
"But how is this legal plunder to be identified? Quite simply. See if the law takes from some persons what belongs to them, and gives it to other persons to whom it does not belong. See if the law benefits one citizen at the expense of another by doing what the citizen himself cannot do without committing a crime.
"Then abolish this law without delay, for it is not only an evil itself, but also it is a fertile source for further evils because it invites reprisals. If such a law which may be an isolated case is not abolished immediately, it will spread, multiply, and develop into a system.
"The person who profits from this law will complain bitterly, defending his acquired rights. He will claim that the state is obligated to protect and encourage his particular industry; that this procedure enriches the state because the protected industry is thus able to spend more and to pay higher wages to the poor workingmen.
"Do not listen to this sophistry by vested interests. The acceptance of these arguments will build legal plunder into a whole system. In fact, this has already occurred. The present-day delusion is an attempt to enrich everyone at the expense of everyone else; to make plunder universal under the pretense of organizing it...."
One definition of democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what's for dinner.
Socialism is nothing more than legalized plunder. Equality is not the poor and middle-class voting to plunder the rich. Nor is it middle-aged and elderly Americans voting to plunder younger Americans or even unborn Americans as is the case in Social Security.
In the absence of Term Limits, changing a majority of the members of Congress is difficult.
And if it is even still possible to rid America of the "entitlement" mentality, no stone should be left unturned if ending the entitlements is to be attempted. And surely any window of opportunity to end the entitlements is likely to be closing soon, making sooner rather than later a better time to try. Our small group believes it is still possible for WE the people to take our country back and restore the freedoms that were guaranteed by our Constitutional Republic. Our next article is the essential key. Every interested Freeper is invited to add their name to our ping list. Please click the link below as WE layout the roadmap to a renaissance and while you are there, Please click the "Mail To" link to add your name to our ping list.
The right of citizens of the United States, who are 18 years of age or older, to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of age.
What makes it clear to me is watching as teachers in the local school district ensure 18 year old students are registered, and then making the local high school a polling place for school bond levies.
It may be legal, but it is not ethical. I can't take someone off the street, get them to a polling place and go into the booth with them to instruct them how to vote.
With only minor differences, that is what is taking place with the teachers and students as described above.
Legal plunder of property owners. Beyond this specific instance, 18 year olds have not formed a sufficient world view on their own to vote responsibly.