Wednesday, February 11, 2009

vaterland

"The degree of justice in a country is measured not by the rights accorded to the native-born, the rich, and the well-connected (whose connections stand by them and represent them in their time of need), but by the justice meted out to the unprotected stranger. Complete equality of the native-born and the stranger is a basic characteristic of Jewish law. In Jewish law, the homeland does not grant human rights; rather, human rights grant the homeland! Jewish law does not distinguish between human rights and citizen's rights. Whoever accepted upon himself the moral laws of humanity- the seven Noahide laws- could claim the right of domicile in Judea."

-- Rabbi Samson Raphael Hirsch, commentary to the book of Exodus, Chapter 1, Verse 14 [Amazon link]

I'd love to try and squeeze his statement about morality granting property rights into an argumentation ethics framework to defend not the illegitimate, incoherent concept of "homeland", but rather one of property rights. It's clear that the good rabbi didn't hold that the land of Israel is the birthright, or that it belongs in come collective manner to the tribe of Israel, but to the contrary- it's a land that is open for acquisition to potentially anyone so long that they behave toward others in a moral fashion.

According to some libertarians, the concept of property is derived via argumentation ethics [link]. Roughly speaking, a presupposition to the concept of an argument requires individuals to recognize the property rights of others to their own bodies and the use and/or possession of scarce goods, or what is then called property.

1 comment:

Don Emmerich, Jr. said...

Hi --

I'm a fellow anarcho-capitalist and I was wondering if you would be interested in doing a link exchange -- I'll post a link to your blog on my blogroll and you post a link to my blog on yours. I blog at http://donemmerich.blogspot.com/.

Let me know if you're interested.

Thanks,
Don Emmerich