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Accepting Government Funds

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softwareNerd
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You aren't asking others to sacrifice for your need.

If a robber took 50 bucks from you, and the robber went on to rob 10 other people of 50 bucks each, if you had the chance to take get back your 50 bucks from the guy, you would not be taking it from the 10 other people he robbed. You would be taking back what he took from you.

This point makes sense, in a closed environment. If the robber is the equivalent of the Government, then as soon as the money is stolen, it is out the door. Assuming that is not the case, if someone robs money from you, you call the police and/or sue that person civilly for the return of your property. I don't believe in vigilanteism.

What if the robber has already used some of the money that was stolen? Lets say he has only $200 of the original stolen $500 left on him. If I take back my $50, the other 10 people cannot recover their $50. I know this is a silly example, but I just don't think accepting entitlement money is as simple as "taking back" what was taken from you.

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But you are using roads that were paid for with the money that the government used. You are using the roads for free. And there are several non government funded options for you to use to get to work. The only money that went into those roads of yours or your taxes. Are you going to keep using the roads? Or are you going to stop using the roads altogether until the government sells them to a private constructor?

I am having a hard time rationalizing the "use of roads" other than they are completely necessary for me to live my life. I have paid my taxes so I am "entitled" to use the roads to get to work to be productive and support myself. Welfare, Food Stamps and Unemployment are never completely necessary. There are other options. I do not have any other way to get to work. In addition, I do not think using roads is actually asking anyone else to sacrifice for my needs.

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This point makes sense, in a closed environment. ..... I don't believe in vigilanteism.

The point was not in support of vigilanteism, it was to illustrate that issue of the value this person took from you and that your recovery of that value is not taking it from somone else.

What if the robber has already used some of the money that was stolen?

It doesn't matter, the robber still took $50 in value from you against your will and you have a right to be compensated. It isn't necessary to check the serial numbers on the bills to know that they were your bills; the value the person has taken from you is $50. That's what he is responsible for owing you. In the same sense, it doesn't matter that the government acts as a big money laundering establishment when they take your money and put it in with everyone elses to "clean" it of your ownership.

If I take back my $50, the other 10 people cannot recover their $50.

But you don't owe the other 10 people that 50 bucks a piece, he does. You still have a right to be fully compensated just as they do. Whether or not you have the opportunity to be compensated before anyone else is immaterial... it doesn't make you a beneficiary of the works of other people. THE ROBBER is responsible for the injustice, not you, and not the other 10 people. It is not entitlement money if you legitimately have a right to the value that was taken from you or the value you earned. Entitlement (in its negative context) refers to the unearned; money to which one has no right to claim.

Edited by RationalBiker
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I just moved to a new state and town, and I'm looking for a job. About a week ago I went into a place that helps people into jobs. A lady there asked me if I was on unemployment. I said no. She asked why not. I said I didn't believe in it. She said that I should think about getting some benefits. I nodded politely, but in my mind I was thinking: "I would rather starve."

I'm serious. I would much rather be completely homeless and foodless than use a gun to steal from someone. Granted, I have paid and will continue to pay vast amounts of money into this system of robbery, for more than will compensate. I think as objectivists we need to act on principle. Who's life do you think is more satisfying? My life as a person with integrity, or the "comfortable" person on welfare?

We can't just put off our principles by saying 'well, in the future this will be bad.' That's what our enemies do. We need live by our philosophy today, here, in reality, because that's what will make us happy.

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I just moved to a new state and town, and I'm looking for a job. About a week ago I went into a place that helps people into jobs. A lady there asked me if I was on unemployment. I said no. She asked why not. I said I didn't believe in it. She said that I should think about getting some benefits. I nodded politely, but in my mind I was thinking: "I would rather starve."
Would you do the same if the government sent you a tax-refund for some reason? For instance, while doing your taxes, you realize that if you put down details about the interest you paid on your home-mortgage, then you will receive a check from the government, as a "tax-refund". Wouldn't that be similar to getting an unemployment check? After all, some tax-payer (and future generations) are paying to send you that tax-refund, just as they are paying to send you an unemployment check.
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I don't want anything I haven't earned. If I haven't earned something, in any example, I won't take it, unless I have no choice. I would never accept welfare, or support a statist country, or go to a public/state school. There are of course, some things which in which we have no choice, like driving on government roads. But even if it would make my life much easier, accepting something from a robber condones theft. No thanks.

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If I had gone to a community college, say, one thing I would probably do is exhaustively calculate out the statistics and numbers of how much money I pay in taxes for which departments, with how much money is put into the school, and how much I would pay in the coming years. And even if state funded education in the US was eradicated after 5 years, I would give back the money to the rightful tax payers.

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I noticed some are lumping in unemployment w/welfare, food stamps and other such "entitlement" programs.

It should be noted that unemployment is unique amongst these in that you are causing direct harm to the business you make your unemployment claim against when you file.

When unemployment benefits are granted to a fired or laid off employee of a company the govt starts charging the company higher rates, just like when you get in an accident your car insurance tends to go up. Not only that but even companies that have never laid off or fired (for anything other than reasons that would make the employee uneligible-like theft) are staring to see their premiums increase as the govt keeps extending duration of benefits. The obama admin has proposed that to receive unemployment a person need not even be looking for new employment (previously a requirement).

While something like welfare keeps your level of consumption of goods and services stable (a benefit to the businesses you frequent) while taking back some of what what stolen from you filing for unemployment actually causes tangible financial harm to the business you filed against in particular and businesses at large since insurance is nothing but a big risk-pool.

I'm putting this info out there pretty much value-neutral as many who have never owned a business may not realise that they aren't just reclaiming from the govt when they file.

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