Friday, February 1, 2013

The individual and the collective

First there was family, then friendship. And then came private property, a system of allocation when dealing beyond one’s kith and kin.

All of these came way before government as an official institution, which incidentally indicates that property rights are enforceable among people even without government, just as words and phrases can mean something to a populace with no need of official decree. 

And what was once the monopoly of petty gangs and barbarians — violence — would be usurped by the state, whose primary means of existing is and remains the threat of violence, or the actual use thereof.

In the system of government, the harmony between the individual, the family, friends and the rest of society was broken. People, as grouped by clan, race, class, etc. disregarded private property as much as was possible without inciting regime upheaval.

And in the guise of ‘private property,’ other people’s possessions were taken by force. In fact, such a means of wealth redistribution was carried out via political influence. No wonder that any rich person who belittles the sufferings of others or the violation of others’ property rights is still dubbed a ‘capitalist pig,’ a maligning of free enterprise when in fact state cronyism is upheld.

Through slow education, perhaps a harmony between the individual and the composite of such can still reemerge.

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