12 October 2008

5. Primary Rights and Derivative Freedoms

REGARDING PRIMARY INDIVIDUAL RIGHTS AND DERIVATIVE FREEDOMS.

My Interpretation and Thoughts:

As Ayn Rand has pointed out, the basic right to life is the “source” of all other individual rights, including property rights - to which I will add, is also the “source” to all derivative freedoms (my term).

Primary Individual Rights refer to the fundamental, basic rights of any and all individuals:
- The Right to Life (the source of all other rights)
- The Right to Liberty
- Property Rights
- The Right to the Pursuit of Happiness

I choose to use the expression “Derivative Freedoms” to represent and describe all basic freedoms that are “derived” from the applications of the primary, fundamental rights of life, liberty, property rights, and the pursuit of happiness (as the U.S. Founding Fathers expressed the basic individual rights).

Derivative Freedoms include such basic freedoms and secondary rights of the individual as, but not limited to:
- The Freedom of Religion
- The Freedom from Religion
- The Freedom of Speech
- The Freedom of the Press
- The Right of the People Peacefully to Assembly
- The Right of the People to “Petition the Government for a Redress of Grievances”
- The Right of the Individual to Keep and Bear Arms
- The Right to a Speedy and Public Trial
- The Right to a Trial by Jury
- The Right to have the Assistance of Counsel for one’s defense
- The Freedom and Right of the People to engage in Unregulated Commerce and Business.

Since Derivative Freedoms are “derived” from the exercise and application of Individual Rights, including Property Rights, they are not primary and do not trump or override the exercise of the Individual Rights and Property Rights by other individuals. One can only practice his/her derivative freedoms on their own property, or on another’s property or business where they are either given the consent to do so, or they purchase or trade for the use of the property to do so through peaceful, voluntary (non-coercive) cooperation.

For example: An individual’s Freedom of Speech does not trump or override the Property Rights of other individuals or businesses. The Property Rights of an individual, a corporation, and/or any business (which is made up of an individual or a group of individuals) override the Freedom of Speech of other individuals when those individuals are physically on the property of others. If an person or business does not like what you are expressing on their property, or does not want you to express your views or ideas on their property, or will not allow you to disturb meetings or lectures on their property, that is their right to do so by exercising (acting upon) their fundamental, inalienable Property Rights. You are still free, however, to pursue your Freedom of Speech elsewhere (if welcomed or given consent) and/or on your own private property. No individual (and certainly no group, mob, or government) holds a “blank check” over the rights and freedoms of other individuals and businesses.

Regarding the Freedom of Religion: It is my interpretation that the Founding Fathers of the U.S.A. knew that a free society had to provide for the recognition and protection of the individual’s rights (life, liberty, property, and pursuit of happiness), and therefore, his derivative freedom to hold, consider, believe, form, and practice the religion of his choice, while also recognizing and protecting all other individuals’ same rights, including their derivative freedom of religion – and provide such recognition and protection through a proper, representational, constitutionally-limited government. In this sense, the government was then established as a “religious neutral” protective governing body – meaning that the government of a free society is not based upon and does not represent any particular religion. Further, I think that it was the Founding Fathers’ intention to include in the Derivative Freedom of Religion the individual’s right and freedom to also hold, consider, believe, form, and practice any and all non-religious ideas and philosophies as well – as would be the rational, logical conclusion, result, and application of an individual’s primary rights.

Regarding what I call the Freedom from Religion: As the derivative freedom of religion is essentially the rational, logical conclusion, result, and application of an individual’s primary rights, it is my interpretation that what I call the “Freedom from Religion” is also a derivative freedom, as it is also essentially the rational, logical conclusion, result, and application of an individual’s primary rights. Just as an individual is free to choose and practice his own religion in a free society (freedom of religion), so is an individual also free not to choose, or associate with, any religion in a free society (freedom from religion).

Regarding the Separation of Church and State: It is my interpretation that the Founding Fathers of the U.S.A. also knew that a free society meant that the whole of society (the country, the nation) – meaning the whole of the people, the citizenry - had to be free of any government established and enforced national religion and rule, and therefore, they clearly promoted and documented the need for the absolute separation of the governing functions and duties of the representational, constitutionally-limited government from any religion (church), and including, I think, any form of mystical orientation, such as environmentalism (see my discussion regarding this in Items Nos. 9 and 10 below). The Founding Fathers knew fundamentally that any representational, protective government of a free society had to be “religious neutral.” Regardless of what many religiously-oriented people tend to believe or wish for presently (2008), the principle of the “Separation of Church and State” is fundamentally critical to a free society of individual and economic freedom (of Capitalism), as is also the principle of the “Separation of Commerce and State.”

Reference Item No. 3 above.

Why Primary Individual Rights and Derivative Freedoms are possible ONLY under Capitalism.

Primary Individual Rights and Derivative Freedoms, and the exercising of, are possible only under Capitalism because the only proper function of an objectively established constitutionally-limited government - under a laissez-faire capitalistic social-political system - is to recognize and protect individual and economic freedom, individual rights, property rights, and derivative freedoms of any single individual and of all individuals, including the businesses and organizations, and all commerce activities, that individuals create, establish, and engage in, in an unrestricted, unregulated free-market economy.

Why Primary Individual Rights and Derivative Freedoms are NOT possible under Statism.

One of the basic principles of Statism is based on the idea that man’s life, including all of his work, belongs to the state (government or ruling group). Therefore, the most basic, fundamental right to one’s own life is a meaningless concept under any and all forms of Statism.

It is also important to remember that individual rights, property rights, and derivative freedoms are not recognized or protected at all under Statism.

As Ayn Rand has pointed out, the basic right to life is the “source” of all other individual rights, including property rights - to which I will add, is also the “source” to all derivative freedoms (my term).

Because of this, and since under Statism man’s life belongs to the state, any discussion of the meaning and application of all individual rights, property rights, and derivative freedoms under any and all forms of Statism becomes pointless, meaningless, and null and void.

Therefore, any further discussion under this section of Statism regarding basic individual rights, including property rights, and their relationship to derivative freedoms is moot.

It is foolish to pretend that individual rights, property rights, and derivative freedoms have any meaning or importance under Statism. When a man’s life, and his work, belongs to the state - and are not his to freely act upon - and the basic right to life is not recognized or protected, no other individual rights, including property rights, or derivative freedoms, are possible – for individuals and/or business.

That is the reality under Statism, in any and all of its forms.

Force, control, and tyranny. That is Statism. Period.

Reference Item No. 3 above.