Category Archives: Philosophy
To compel a man to furnish contributions of money for the propagation of opinions which he disbelieves, is sinful and tyrannical
— Thomas Jefferson, The Virginia Act for Establishing Religious Freedom (1779)
…writing in the First Amendment’s sister document, expressing a principle that applies to the modern refusal to provide employees with services they consider immoral
One may well ask: “How can you advocate breaking some laws and obeying others?” The answer lies in the fact that there are two types of laws: just and unjust. I would be the first to advocate obeying just laws.
One has not only a legal but a moral responsibility to obey just laws. Conversely, one has a moral responsibility to disobey unjust laws. I would agree with St. Augustine that “an unjust law is no law at all”.
If you analyze it I believe the very heart and soul of conservatism is libertarianism.
I think conservatism is really a misnomer just as liberalism is a misnomer for the liberals — if we were back in the days of the Revolution, so-called conservatives today would be the Liberals and the liberals would be the Tories.
The basis of conservatism is a desire for less government interference or less centralized authority or more individual freedom and this is a pretty general description also of what libertarianism is.
‘What a fuss about an omelette!‘ he had exclaimed when he heard of the burning. How abominably unjust to persecute a man for such an airy trifle as that!
‘I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it,’ was his attitude now.
Both in England and on the Continent a graduated property tax (l’impôt progressif [progressive tax]) has been advocated, on the avowed ground that the state should use the instrument of taxation as a means of mitigating the inequalities of wealth.
I am as desirous as any one that means should be taken to diminish those inequalities, but not so as to relieve the prodigal at the expense of the prudent.
To tax the larger incomes at a higher percentage than the smaller is to lay a tax on industry and economy; to impose a penalty on people for having worked harder and saved more than their neighbours.
It is not the fortunes which are earned, but those which are unearned, that it is for the public good to place under limitation.
Freedom is not defined by safety. Freedom is defined by the ability of citizens to live without government interference.
Government cannot create a world without risks, nor would we really wish to live in such a fictional place. Only a totalitarian society would even claim absolute safety as a worthy ideal, because it would require total state control over its citizens’ lives.
Liberty has meaning only if we still believe in it when terrible things happen and a false government security blanket beckons.
The citizen who thinks he sees that the commonwealth’s political clothes are worn out, and yet holds his peace and does not agitate for a new suit, is disloyal, he is a traitor.
That he may be the only one who thinks he sees this decay, does not excuse him: it is his duty to agitate anyway, and it is the duty of others to vote him down if they do not see the matter as he does.
It is not we non-interventionists who are isolationsists.
The real isolationists are those who impose sanctions and embargoes on countries and peoples across the globe because they disagree with the internal and foreign policies of their leaders.
The real isolationists are those who choose to use force overseas to promote democracy, rather than seek change through diplomacy, engagement, and by setting a positive example.
—Ron Paul, I advocate the same foreign policy the Founding Fathers would, Union Leader (2007)
And what did it replace in the historical scene? It replaced actual violence.
Words are supposed to be free so we CAN actually fight things out, in the battleplace of ideas, so we don’t end up fighting them out in civil wars.
If we try to legitimately ban anything can hurt someone’s feelings, everyone is reduced to silence.