Thursday, August 18, 2016
Some time back, via Capitalism
Magazine, I saw reference to an interesting Financial Times
titled, "There's Nothing 'Immoral' About Avoiding Taxes, but the
Beatings Will Continue." Within the piece, author Kevin Libin
demonstrates that most people do not possess a conceptual grasp
rights. Libin does so by noting the contradiction most people hold
regarding taxation by
means of the following thought experiment:
...If one person confronts you demanding your money under threat, that's plainly robbery. But what if it's three people? Okay: still robbery. Now, what if it's 10, and they first hold a vote to take your cash? Maybe they offer you a vote, too, but you're in the minority. What if it's 1,000 people and they give some of your money to a soup kitchen? Maybe they give a portion of the money back to you. And offer you a bowl of soup, too. Now, think of many more people instead sending you a bill for the money, with their threat for non-compliance still clearly implied.This is both (1) a good way to demonstrate the contradiction inherent in wanting to own something and favoring taxation, and (2) an easy point at which to help others see the role of altruism in getting them to accept the contradiction. By extension, it might provide a good jumping-off point in helping elucidate the fact that altruism is exactly the opposite kind of morality on which to base advocacy for liberty.
It's not hard to see the point: Somewhere, when the number of people involved gets large enough -- and the leaders bear titles like MP or premier or judge -- the act of forcing individuals to cough up dough, framed as helping others, blurs from theft to legitimate taxation. Somehow it's even seen as virtuous that we should all pay our share...