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Open letter to Senator Corzine

By Absolutely ·
I just heard you on C-SPAN, debating for the office of Governor of New Jersey, undermine the welfare/populist trend of your party, and want to congratulate you for it.

You correctly described smoking in public as an imposition by the smoker on all affected non-smokers. It is an admirable moral judgement that no person has the right to a single moment of another's life, and the question of the right to smoke in public is truly not dependent on ascertaining the extent of harm due to second-hand smoke: the fact that some harm is done to an individual as a result of a decision made by another person is sufficient to define as criminal the choice to smoke when it subjects any other person to the smoke. Your observation is all the more courageous since the same moral judgement applies directly to welfare and all other schemes to redistribute of wealth via government.

My gross earnings are purchased by my choices to use my time productively. Each unit of my time is as much mine as every unit of time subtracted from the lifespan of any and all individuals subjected to second-hand smoke, and as much as every individual's time is their own to use as they choose, with respect for the rights of others as the only requisite. I choose not to use my time to support individuals who have not obtained sufficient education to live comfortably. I choose not to use my time to support executives of corporations which cannot survive without coercive government interference, particularly subsidies and tariffs. I salute you for recognizing the right to live one's life unmolested, whether by cigarette smokers seeking a momentary pleasure at the expense of their health, or by government subsidy recipients of all stripes who seek to live free while I earn my own living and theirs.

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Some would see it another way

by jardinier In reply to Open letter to Senator Co ...

Personally I am neutral as regards other people's right to smoke.

At certain stages in my life I have been a smoker, and at other stages (including the present) a non-smoker.

Visitors are quite free to smoke in my smoke-free home if they so desire.

However I am guessing (or betting?) that you will get more than one post from people who feel that BANNING them from smoking is an infringement on their personal rights.

As for the welfare thing: "I choose not to use my time to support individuals who have not obtained sufficient education to live comfortably."

Now what a bloody stupid, bigoted generalisation that is. Even Maxwell will concede that some people can't make it on their own.

But to relate education to welfare -- well the mind simply boggles.

If you stepped out of your ivory tower for a few moments and actually made the acquaintance of some people who are on welfare, you might make the awesome discovery that it is some of the most intelligent and sensitive people on the planet who find it hard to make their way in a fiercely competitive materialistic society.

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Some would bury their heads in the sand.

by Absolutely In reply to Some would see it another ...

"Visitors are quite free to smoke in my smoke-free home if they so desire."

Obviously, I agree that you have the same right to control your property as I have to control mine - absolutely. But what you permit in your home is irrelevant in discussion of what should be permitted in public. You don't own public spaces, so you don't have the right to ignore health risks and decide public law on your own whim. Neither do I, but I offer reason to support my assertions, whereas you offer only irrelevant anecdotes:

"At certain stages in my life I have been a smoker, and at other stages (including the present) a non-smoker.

"If you stepped out of your ivory tower for a few moments and actually made the acquaintance of some people who are on welfare, you might make the awesome discovery that it is some of the most intelligent and sensitive people on the planet who find it hard to make their way in a fiercely competitive materialistic society."

Their lives are dependent on materials as is mine. They can act according to that fact as I do, or they can lack the material their survival requires. If they want my property, they can pay the price I name.

I'm sure there are a wide variety of types of people on welfare. That is irrelevant. What is relevant is only that the government has no right to re-distribute wealth from some citizens to others, on any basis. Assuming that you personally are willing to help whatever Welfare recipient lives near you, you will continue to be free to do so when Welfare ceases. And I will be free to use my money as I choose, to help others according to my standards, not according to a collection of compromises reached by generations of elected "representatives".

"Even Maxwell will concede that some people can't make it on their own."

Even I will concede that some people can't make it on their own. My answer to you is "tough luck". No other species burdens the able members with providing for the incompetents and the derelicts. Although some food grows on trees, without continuous effort even that food will be consumed by other species. If food, clothing and shelter produced themselves spontaneously, it would be just to share them equally, but in reality as it exists, the moral system accords ownership of commodities to the producers. Everybody lives by somebody's effort. Moral adults live by their own effort, and children by the effort of the individuals who have chosen the role of guardian as their preferred lifestyle.

"But to relate education to welfare -- well the mind simply boggles."

Then your mind needs more education. Scroll about halfway down the following page, to the section entitled "Literacy and Basic Skill Levels of Welfare Recipients" to see that education is related to receipt of Welfare funds: http://www.nifl.gov/nifl/facts/welfare.html

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A rivetting discussion topic

by jardinier In reply to Open letter to Senator Co ...

I wonder why nobody other than myself bothered to respond?

I would suggest it is because you didn't pose a question but merely sounded off about a few of your personal opinions.

Watch out that you don't tread on a banana skin and do serious injury to yourself and end up dependent on welfare for the rest of your life.

Now that would be an untenable situation for you, would it not?

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I'm waiting anxiously

by Absolutely In reply to A rivetting discussion to ...

for somebody to request that I remove my topic!

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