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Should Children Be Able to Eat Free? (Parents don't have to pay)

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9 minutes ago, Easy Truth said:

"Forming a society" is too collectivist. It's like "we" form a society as a collective. The individual action is lost.

Chimps form societies. Are they collectivists?

16 minutes ago, Easy Truth said:

Each of us joins a society/group based on the benefits it has for our self.

Yes, when you're old and not able to work hard, you'll be thankful that young people accept cash for the food and supplies and labor you need to sustain your life.

25 minutes ago, Easy Truth said:

The world we live in is simply a description of what exists. We're talking about what should be which can go against what exists. Just because we have involuntary taxation or involuntary redistribution of wealth does not make it right, it does not justify that it is the way it should be. The fact that liberty does not exist does not mean it is somehow irrelevant.

Fine, but I asked you what should be done with the taxes that are not returned to their rightful owners, and you didn't reply. Your position is akin to throwing up one's hands and saying, "I don't care what we do as long as it's what I want to do." Okay, well, we're not doing what you want to do, so let me know if you want a say in how we spend this loot. 

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32 minutes ago, MisterSwig said:

Fine, but I asked you what should be done with the taxes that are not returned to their rightful owners, and you didn't reply. Your position is akin to throwing up one's hands and saying, "I don't care what we do as long as it's what I want to do." Okay, well, we're not doing what you want to do, so let me know if you want a say in how we spend this loot. 

You seem to be coming from a position of there is always loot. There is always one who steals from another. What should we do with the loot. (which is a typical communist position, which justifies redistribution of wealth)

I am saying no one should steal from another. There should be no loot in the first place.

And if the state finds loot, it should give it to the person it was stolen from (or do what is closest to doing that). Ultimately, from an ethics perspective, there should be no looting going on.

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36 minutes ago, Easy Truth said:

You seem to be coming from a position of there is always loot.

To be clear, my position is that there will be loot until we change the Constitution and repeal the government's power to tax. However, we can still reasonably debate the proper use of taxes, because such government funding would also exist in a voluntary system. Consider how children are compelled to attend public school. This doesn't mean we can't set rules for their behavior at school since we forced them to attend. Rules for behavior would exist at any school, and there is a separate basis for determining what those rules should be that has nothing to do with whether the kids are there voluntarily or not.

Edited by MisterSwig

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19 hours ago, Easy Truth said:

A more understandable argument would be that it hurts a human to see a baby killed or wither away. It's Painful to experience. But we can't justify setting up a rule simply because it hurts most of us "adults" who have that painful experience. People kill trees or pets in their yard hurting the feelings of the neighbor, and it is tolerated.

It all boils down to the responsibility and the ownership (rights).

Since you said nothing about it in response to me, I'm going to assume that you believe it's ought to be legally permissible to sell children, emotionally abuse children, and to use them for child pornography. You treat the rights of children as if they have some reduced form of rights and therefore may be treated as something like a pet.

3 hours ago, Easy Truth said:

But when "free" is added, it means take the money from someone. Or force someone to take care of them.

No, it means that somebody paid for it. Buy two loaves of bread and get one free. Nothing radical here. That's all the original question was about, free lunch at public school. There is no discussion to have if you think "free" is a euphemism for stolen money. 

I'm not going to say any more because you didn't address my argument, or the causes of poverty, or how to protect the rights of children (which is different than protecting the rights of adults). I'm not particularly interested in demonstrating to you how children have a right to life in the same way as any human. And I haven't heard a reason to suppose that I need to be questioning that right to life. 

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26 minutes ago, Eiuol said:

Since you said nothing about it in response to me, I'm going to assume that you believe it's ought to be legally permissible to sell children, emotionally abuse children, and to use them for child pornography. You treat the rights of children as if they have some reduced form of rights and therefore may be treated as something like a pet.

I don't think that we should be allowed to abuse children, but it is emotional on my part. I can't make a logical case for it that encompasses rights. (also I did not respond because I specifically said it seemed like the libertarian position was everything you are describing). To quote myself:

  • "I am not proposing anything nor do I have a clear answer, this is a question. The libertarian  position I have heard seems to be children have sub-rights, based on their parents. They don't have rights like an adult, almost to the point that a parent can kill the child. This is heinous, emotionally speaking."
26 minutes ago, Eiuol said:

I'm not going to say any more because you didn't address my argument, or the causes of poverty, or how to protect the rights of children (which is different than protecting the rights of adults). I'm not particularly interested in demonstrating to you how children have a right to life in the same way as any human. And I haven't heard a reason to suppose that I need to be questioning that right to life. 

I am not saying that you have an obligation to make a case for a child's right to life. I am saying that you have not done so.

Logically, it is going to be the right of one who loves the child that is being infringed on when the child is being abused. A child cannot sign contracts, a child does not have the ability to survive like an adult. The child's right is going to be a different kind than an adult's.

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5 minutes ago, Easy Truth said:

Logically, it is going to be the right of one who loves the child that is being infringed on when the child is being abused.

No, it is the child's rights that are being infringed. I don't even know how you came up with this. The difference is just how much more is implied by protecting the rights of children. I have no reason to suppose that children might have something less than adult rights. Just because you are asking questions doesn't mean the question has a valid basis.

8 minutes ago, Easy Truth said:

I am not saying that you have an obligation to make a case for a child's right to life. I am saying that you have not done so.

Of course not. I don't care about making that argument because I find it so trivial. I just wanted to talk about the free lunch stuff. 

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3 minutes ago, Eiuol said:

Of course not. I don't care about making that argument because I find it so trivial. I just wanted to talk about the free lunch stuff. 

Trivial because the rights of a child to live is intrinsic?

4 minutes ago, Eiuol said:

No, it is the child's rights that are being infringed. I don't even know how you came up with this. The difference is just how much more is implied by protecting the rights of children. I have no reason to suppose that children might have something less than adult rights. Just because you are asking questions doesn't mean the question has a valid basis.

So it is true that Objectivism denies that children possess “rights,” in the full sense of the word. Some may find this viewpoint disturbing, but it is the recognition of the truth about rights and children’s nature. Still, Objectivist scholars have amply demonstrated that, within such a framework, there are still ethical and legal guidelines one should follow in raising one’s children.

https://atlassociety.org/commentary/commentary-blog/4274-childrens-rights

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3 hours ago, Easy Truth said:

Trivial because the rights of a child to live is intrinsic?

Trivial as in so simple that I don't want to waste my time. 

I only care to point out the following thing from the article you linked:

"Various Objectivists have developed theories on this subject. Generally, these theories hold that while children do have the full rights of adults, they deserve to have their right to live and not suffer violent attack respected, in virtue of their status as biologically independent human beings with the potential to develop into fully rational and socially independent adults."

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This is claimed to be a quote from Rand:

Q: Do the rights of a child differ from the rights of an adult?

A: Yes and no, from two different aspects. Yes [she meant No], in the sense that the child has the right to life, and liberty and the pursuit of happiness, except that all those rights are based on a man's rational knowledge and understanding. An infant cannot earn his own sustenance, nor can a child exercise his rights and know what the pursuit of happiness means, nor know what freedom is and how to use it. All human rights depend on his nature as a rational being. Therefore the child has to wait until he has developed his mind and acquired enough knowledge to be able to come into full independent exercise of his rights. While he is a child, he has to be supported by his parents. Neither he nor I nor you nor Nature gives him any choice about it, or rather none of us can do anything because this is a fact of nature. Proclaiming some kind of right of childhood isn't going to create those rights. Rights are a concept based on reality. Therefore a parent would not have the right to starve his child, to neglect him, to injure him physically or to kill him. There the government has to protect the child just like any other citizen. But the child cannot claim for himself the rights of an adult, simply because he is not able, he is not competent to exercise them. He has to depend on his parents, and if he doesn't like them, then run away from home as early as you can earn your living, if the government will permit it.

https://www.objectivistliving.com/forums/topic/10181-rand-on-childrens-rights/

The first Atlas society article mentioned before it seems to lean on the argument that @MisterSwig made regarding being potential adults. In this second article https://atlassociety.org/commentary/commentary-blog/4275-childrens-rights-ii-  someone is making the case that children in fact do have full rights but I don't have access to the paper they mention.

Based on the above quote attributed to Rand, she seems to make the case that since the child will not survive without the support of the parents, therefore, based on that fact of reality, the parent does NOT have the right to abuse the child. Also that the child has rights, but not the right to exercise them until they are capable which implies there are rights, and a right to exercise them.

So a parent does NOT have a right to kill a child because a child will eventually become that which deserves full rights. One problem is a zygote also has that potential.

All of us would like to treat it as a child should be treated as if they do have rights mainly because of the implications of if they are not treated that way. To see someone kill a child is emotionally intolerable. But it also has to be acknowledged that there is still no clear and complete explanation of why (the child's right exists) available yet.

If a child has a right to life, the questions that it leaves open ended is abortion but the free lunch issue is addressed in

  • But the child is not per se the responsibility of others in society. So Objectivism holds that there is no governmental role in providing education, and most Objectivists hold that if a child is abused and must be removed from the parents, some private charity or adoption is the proper alternative, because in these cases a stranger voluntarily accepts the responsibility for the child.

It is unfortunate that the article holds the truth to be based on consensus, as in when "most objectivists" think it is true, it is true.

Edited by Easy Truth

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I think it is safe to say that:

It is in accordance with the Objectivist principles of ethics and politics that

10 hours ago, Easy Truth said:

if a child is abused and must be removed from the parents, some private charity or adoption is the proper alternative, because in these cases a stranger voluntarily accepts the responsibility for the child.

 

and indeed it has nothing to do with concensus of or by any group.

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11 hours ago, Easy Truth said:

Also that the child has rights, but not the right to exercise them until they are capable which implies there are rights, and a right to exercise them.

This is bizarre. They have no right to use the rights you doubt they have? 

11 hours ago, Easy Truth said:

but the free lunch issue is addressed in

Please read my first post now that you are starting to get that kids have rights " in the sense that the child has the right to life, and liberty and the pursuit of happiness"

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On 2/29/2020 at 4:31 PM, Eiuol said:

Public schools should do that as well. In the long run I would abolish public schools, but as long as they exist, feeding the kids should be part of what they do.

It is best to explore and define the ideal action in the ideal society, and then move down to increasing levels of corruption. Mandatory public schooling is a level of corruption which muddies the water. If we have not defined the ideal, then solutions become slippery, ambiguous.

In other words, now that we have public schools should we feed them? I can't say for sure. All of the solutions mentioned will solve one thing but cause another problem. A thorough long term analysis of ROI would probably be used to determine which is best to do.

But as to the question: should children get free food, as long as it is free food obtained by voluntary donors, no one would object. That is a non issue to discuss.

The important and controversial question is when a conflict exists, when free means, take it involuntarily from someone and give to someone else.

There, the question of a child's right to live, does not encompass forcing someone to take care of them.(or does it?) But if we can't force someone to take care of it, that would sometimes be letting the child die. When it comes to an adult, even now, the law is that you cannot be prosecuted for not helping a drowning person (as far as I know). But the question that I still ask is, does the child have a right that obligates the observer to save it.

I suspect that answer is no, and it bothers me. But I can't get around it.

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4 minutes ago, Easy Truth said:

I suspect that answer is no, and it bothers me. But I can't get around it.

The idea of a child dying from neglect IF everyone did not care bothers you ...

but the fact that it bothers you means that you care... and so maybe others care,

and to the extent of that care exhibited by you and the others, you and others can ACT voluntarily, donate money and time etc.

 

If literally no one wants to care for or invest in something, then there literally would be no one there to force anyone else to do anything, and no risk of the conundrum you speak of.

 

The fact that someone somewhere (many everywhere) will almost always see value in a poor child with derelict parents, means that there is almost always possibility of voluntary support for that child... but force would make it wrong.

 

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1 hour ago, Easy Truth said:

But as to the question: should children get free food, as long as it is free food obtained by voluntary donors, no one would object. That is a non issue to discuss.

How is it a nonissue? You would still ask the same question about whether it is moral to provide free food to children. Don't be the kind of person that advocates for voluntary action in a free market, but shrugs their shoulders as soon as anyone asks how and if it ought to be done. 

You just didn't follow my argument. I feel I want to try again. I'm going to rephrase it. Don't think of this as a deduction, I'm just making it very visually clear what I'm saying. I start with 0 because it doesn't have to do exactly with the topic at hand, but it really should be stated.

0) Both children and adults have the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Because of their differences in development though, the way this manifests is different, particularly because they have not fully developed their rational faculty. 

1) The state is obligated to protect the rights of children and adults

2) A child's rights are violated when a caregiver denies adequate care (that includes denying adequate food, water, shelter, etc). This is why it is justified to take children away from abusively neglectful parents.

Side point! It is not necessarily the parent's fault if adequate care cannot be provided, at least in today's world. Statism can be a cause of poverty.

3) During that period of time when kids do not have a caretaker, after the state has taken away those children, the state is obligated to become temporary caretaker and provide care to those children. 

4) The state denying adequate care to the children under state custody would be the same as violating their rights.

That is the basis to where I'm working from. I don't think this part would be controversial. But this next part probably is. My side point is where it might become tricky, so here is a second argument to make my more nuanced point. Keep in mind that this part is only an issue because of statism.  

1) The state ought to make up for things it is currently doing that are unjust. 

2) The state is partially responsible for children lacking adequate care, and to that extent are violating the rights violations to children.

3) In order to act as an institution that protects the rights of those children, the state ought to provide free food to at least some children as long as there is state-caused poverty.

3a) As long as public education exists, free food at school would be the most efficient way to provide that food.

By the way, I don't think this would expand statism beyond what exists currently. I suspect that it would shrink statism actually, because the state would be partially making up for externalities it caused and hopefully neutralizes the damage a little. 

Edited by Eiuol

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We have not been talking about the same thing. I have been talking in terms of the ideal state. You talk more in terms of what exists, meaning mixed with some corruption. I believe Swig does too.

2 hours ago, Eiuol said:

4) The state denying adequate care to the children under state custody would be the same as violating their rights.

If we go based on the idea that a state has custody of children in public school, then one could make the case that they have an obligation. The key is that the state is acting as the custodian.

In the same way, if the state, for some reason has custody of someone, be it a child or a prisoner or someone being quarantined, Yes, the state is obligated not to violate their rights, to take care of them. It has to feed the person in a quarantine or in prison too.

Now let us examine an analogy where there is no corruption:

If A gives their child to be babysat by B, agreement is before dinner will get the child but A is late, shouldn't B give dinner to the child?

1. Should B give dinner expecting compensation? Or do it without expectation?
2. Should A compensate B for the dinner that was given? Or raise hell that his child was not fed?

The question of "rights" in a political context, is non contractual. As in, how should you act if there were no contracts defining the boundaries. With contracts, everything is delineated.

So now we are beyond the contract time. Who should do what?

I would argue that the child should be fed and the person should be compensated for feeding the child.

Your argument seems to be center around the "custody" issue. As in "no matter what, B should give dinner".

But in all these cases, there has to be a budget that the custodian has, it has to be funded in a just manner, voluntarily. If it is not, then we are discussing a corrupt system. Many factors come into play.

If you take custody without being able to take care of someone, you are in the wrong. (as in a parent who can't afford the child)

So, regarding should they be fed free food, implies, should they be fed food that has been stolen from some people. Well, we are in a corrupt system, then you do the least corrupt thing, whatever that is.

But, you have to preface your recommendation as being "partially corrupt". It is not the ideal solution.

Similar to Swig's argument of it's all loot, all stolen, how best do we deal with it. (as in we don't live in the ideal world)

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2 hours ago, Easy Truth said:

You talk more in terms of what exists, meaning mixed with some corruption.

Only in the second argument, I even pointed it out.

2 hours ago, Easy Truth said:

If we go based on the idea that a state has custody of children in public school

I am specifically talking about when the state has taken children away from parents who violate the rights of their children. You've completely dropped the context set by everything before 4. 

2 hours ago, Easy Truth said:

Your argument seems to be center around the "custody" issue.

You have been combining both arguments when they are actually separate. The first argument is all about custody to demonstrate a way that the rights of children can be violated. The second argument is about righting a wrong.

2 hours ago, Easy Truth said:

should they be fed food that has been stolen from some people.

A better way to phrase it is: when the state makes up for its unjust intervention into the market that caused poverty, would free food for children be a good reparation? 

Edited by Eiuol

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21 minutes ago, Eiuol said:

A better way to phrase it is: when the state makes up for its unjust intervention into the market that caused poverty, would free food for children be a good reparation? 

Yes it would.

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On 3/4/2020 at 2:24 PM, Easy Truth said:

So it is true that Objectivism denies that children possess “rights,” in the full sense of the word.

In her theory of concept-formation, Rand uses the idea of an "implicit concept," which is actually a percept with the constituents from which the concept is later formed. In this case we might be dealing with an implicit right, which is actually an action with the constituents from which the right is later formed. For example, an adult has the right to life, meaning generally that he has the freedom to act to preserve his life without interference from others. The core of this right is acting to preserve one's life. (The rest of it requires a social context to be meaningful.) And that core action exists even in a newborn baby, who, among other life-sustaining behaviors, reflexively suckles at the breast for nourishment. The baby, lacking self-awareness and rationality, doesn't yet understand the purpose for its actions, but the constituents of the right are all there: a conscious human, a social unit, the acting, and the life-sustaining from the acting. What's missing is the development of these things into maturity: a rational form of conscious human, a more complex social unit involving not just the mother, voluntary actions instead of involuntary, and a self-awareness and choice of standard for one's actions. So while the constituents exist at birth, they have not developed into the form of an explicit right.

Edited by MisterSwig

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According to the principles of Objectivism, Individual rights do NOT include any positive right to any thing, be it food, pleasure, healthcare, education, shelter, etc.

A proper government protects individual rights which are rights to freedom of action (the negative right to be free from the initiation of force from others domestic or foreign) in order to allow them to pursue life and values such as the aforementioned food, pleasure, healthcare etc.

http://aynrandlexicon.com/lexicon/individual_rights.html

https://www.google.ca/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=2&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=2ahUKEwiUwILTwYboAhVomeAKHeqABVAQFjABegQIBBAB&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.theobjectivestandard.com%2F2011%2F08%2Fayn-rand-theory-rights%2F&usg=AOvVaw2YaGxh4vJjE3g_wlpWTuPW

No individual right of any adult or child gives rise to any obligation that a government MUST provide anything positive to that person or child, the only proper role is to prevent others from interfering with that person's rights to pursue their values.

The state must not stand in the way of voluntary charity, or support for children in need, and it must relocate them when parents will not or cannot provide for them (e.g. refuse the voluntary help of others), but it must not force anyone to care for the child against their will, whether through enslavement, taxation, or by any other manner whatever.

 

Forced taxation for the education system is wrong, adding to that cost by feeding children at no charge to parents compounds the impropriety, it does not lessen it.

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Can you at least criticize the written argument rather than just giving a monologue? Because my only argument in support of it is to the extent that the state would use its already acquired resources (both legitimate and illegitimate) to directly make up for the force it initiated on people. No increased taxation required, or even regulatory mechanisms.

 

Edited by Eiuol

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7 minutes ago, Eiuol said:

Can you at least criticize the written argument rather than just giving a monologue? Because my only argument in support of it is to the extent that the state would use its already acquired resources (both legitimate and illegitimate) to directly make up for the force it initiated on people. 

 

MORE force does not equate with "making up for the force" it initiated on people.

 

Taxes on everyone for the education system are wrong.  The imposition of no choice in particular for parents is also wrong.

The only remedy is to rebate entirely the State's taxes for education on everyone and allowing private schools to operate and parents to have choice.

 

As I said above, adding "free lunch" (in reward to delinquent parents at the expense of others) to the cost of any illegitimate program is a FURTHER violation of the rights of people... not a way to make up for anything.

Edited by StrictlyLogical

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7 minutes ago, Eiuol said:

Can you at least criticize the written argument rather than just giving a monologue? Because my only argument in support of it is to the extent that the state would use its already acquired resources (both legitimate and illegitimate) to directly make up for the force it initiated on people. 

if (argument.understand == false) ;

system.out.Print ("REEEEEE") ;

      Run sys.exe

[ lexicon.cite ("www.aynrandlexicon.com) ] ;

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34 minutes ago, StrictlyLogical said:

The only remedy is to rebate entirely the State's taxes for education on everyone and allowing private schools to operate and parents to have choice.

Yes, in principle all you have said is correct. But you are speaking on a different level from their context.

What Eiuol  and Swig are arguing is understandable to me ... but in a compromised, corrupt sense. (which ultimately could means it is unethical)

In their context one must: 
-Forget the ideal as in (assume it does not exist(that you can't have NO LOOTING)) that you will never be able to have the money given back. (which may be the point of contention - because that is not the real world)

Eiuol perspective or context requires compromise which is the problem.

If you can never get the money back, and the money would be spend on more wars, gas stations that cost 1 million in Afghanistan etc. would this be a decent choice in comparison. Obviously, it is at its core, corrupt, but one poison is less than another (objectively and/or subjectively).

In other words, they argue that the force has been exerted already. No more force, but how the distribution of the loot should happen (assume it can't be given back(for some reason)).

SL is arguing that there should be no looting. Which is the correct, pure, non corrupt answer of course.

But that is not their context. I think at this point, the question is epistemological (normatively) regarding the method of discussing, debating, exploring an ethical issue.

I would say that we have to debate ethical issues from the ideal, non corrupt, non compromised stance. You get to clear and agreed on answers. Once you throw in some poison, anything goes, based on subjective preferences, personality, and mood.

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1 hour ago, Easy Truth said:

Yes, in principle all you have said is correct. But you are speaking on a different level from their context.

What Eiuol  and Swig are arguing is understandable to me ... but in a compromised, corrupt sense. (which ultimately could means it is unethical)

In their context one must: 
-Forget the ideal as in (assume it does not exist(that you can't have NO LOOTING)) that you will never be able to have the money given back. (which may be the point of contention - because that is not the real world)

Eiuol perspective or context requires compromise which is the problem.

If you can never get the money back, and the money would be spend on more wars, gas stations that cost 1 million in Afghanistan etc. would this be a decent choice in comparison. Obviously, it is at its core, corrupt, but one poison is less than another (objectively and/or subjectively).

In other words, they argue that the force has been exerted already. No more force, but how the distribution of the loot should happen (assume it can't be given back(for some reason)).

SL is arguing that there should be no looting. Which is the correct, pure, non corrupt answer of course.

But that is not their context. I think at this point, the question is epistemological (normatively) regarding the method of discussing, debating, exploring an ethical issue.

I would say that we have to debate ethical issues from the ideal, non corrupt, non compromised stance. You get to clear and agreed on answers. Once you throw in some poison, anything goes, based on subjective preferences, personality, and mood.

Fair enough given a context of gross and universal immoral looting... what WOULD constitute fair and moral incremental redress?

Fairness in general and fairness before the law should be kept in mind here.

 

IF you, I and Bill gates are all overtaxed...Should we all get a small reduction in tax towards a proper society?  Sure... should it be proportional?  Say 1% of income tax per year? Well, since taxes are disproportional (we have unjust brackets) the unfairness should be addressed at the same time... so Bill Gates percentage tax should be reduced at a rate so it catches up at some point with ours on the way down....

Now while addressing the gross ills of society I add a new one by neglecting my child's welfare.  I claim to be "unable" to feed him.  (Although I presumably feed myself, maybe smoke cigarettes or have a drinking or gambling problem).

Who should "pay" for my disability?  Should my tax rebate be greater than yours or Bill Gates (on our wonderful journey to a proper society)?  Why? Because of my need? (do I REALLY need it?... have I given up smoking?  have I worked harder or tried to get a better job?  have I appealed to friends and family for charity or even a loan until I get my SH!t together?) or maybe I should get it Because of my inability or disability? 

... and why do I want to keep custody of my child if I CANNOT provide the necessities of life??  (or can I ?)  Do I really love my child?  or perhaps I just "love" my cigarettes, alcohol, or gambling MORE than knowing my child is not going hungry... What kind of person am I if I would rather have strangers FORCED to help me (perhaps when I do not deserve it) instead of asking my friends, family, or even strangers for charity or a loan?

 

In the VERY RARE case it might be shown that the immoral acts of government caused innocent hard working parents to be incapable of supporting their child, in which case they perhaps should receive the tax break (and at the same time be set free from government benefits as well) to enable them to be more self sufficient... ahead of other citizens not in such a dire situation.  Redress for injustice should be intelligent and might have to be paid in the order to avoid permanent harm which these innocents are at risk of, and which others might not be.

 

A blanket free lunch program at school would simply be a new welfare program... adding to the immorality of the entire system.

 

 

Edited by StrictlyLogical

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