Modern government embodies nothing so much as Don Quixote. It assumes a mantle of morality- protecting the rights of the minorities who cry discrimination and disenfranchisement- and rides off to the rescue without bothering to look at whether the societal giants it tilts at are monsters or just windmills.
Unfortunately, it is real people, many of them business people just trying to live according to their own view of morality, who are hurt by the government’s chivalric histrionics.
This is the result of statism, a perverse twisting of natural law and individualism, which bestows consciousness upon government.
Social contract theory recognizes, in a state of nature, individuals have inherent rights, but are engaged in a constant battle to protect these and their property as there is no overarching organ that has the authority to punish man’s transgressions against his fellow man. This, John Locke explains in the “Second Treatise on Government,” makes men “willing to join in society with others, who are already united, or have a mind to unite, for the mutual preservation of their lives, liberties and estates.”
The reciprocality of rights — an understanding that the individual desire to live in security ought to engender respect for the same feeling in another — is explained in “The Theory of Moral Sentiments” by Adam Smith: “Every faculty in one man is the measure by which he judges of the like faculty in another.”
These dual ideas do not abrogate the absolute nature of rights. They act as a sort of sluice-gate, ensuring a smooth flow, so that the free exercise of liberty impedes no man with honest intentions.
This, however, requires total neutrality — a government that is value-judgment blind. It has a strict code of justice and reacts to actions that violated its tenets. It does not wring its hands about social consciousness and the plight of the disenfranchised. Government, in order to mete out just reparations for wrongs done must derive resources from somewhere and prioritize need, and since it’s a public entity, this means taking from one group in order to provide for another.
Essentially, government is cognizant. It functions as an individual because crafts legislation with a specific outcome in mind, which means it has a purpose, or will. It has become a living being.
Now, like any other sentient creature, it is bound and compelled by natural law, the first rule of which is to survive and the second rule of which is to thrive.
But, in such a system, there is no redress of grievances. There is only power in the executive, legislative and judicial branches concentrated in the hands of a biased authoritarian figure whose consciousness—dreams, desires, failings—have been transferred to government’s organs. The legal process is now a sham, a personal tool. Rule of law does not exist because all individual are not equal before the law. There are groups whose attributes make them more deserving in the eyes of the government, thus putting them in greater standing with the law than others.
The inevitable end result: rapaciousness, death and suffering on a mass scale. Stalinism and Leninism and their evils are not perversions of some greater ideological good, as modern democratic socialists like to claim. They are the inevitable end result of such thinking.
This is not rational self-interest. This is barbarism, a state of anarchy. But, it is moral. Property rights are the true heart of natural law, and the heart of property is the concept of “I.” Statism transfers self-identity from its rightful place- the individual person or business, whose excesses are checked by discretion in the hands of neighbors and consumers- and places it into an all-powerful entity that cannot be held accountable because it has a monopoly on force.
While America has not yet reached the point of Stalinist purges, nor is it anywhere close, there is no doubt that political correctness has abrogated equal justice and led to certain groups being viewed differently in the eyes of federal regulations. This is a softer tyranny, yes, but just as dangerous to anyone who believes in natural law and individualism.