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Monday, May 23, 2005

Employment-at-Will

Today's Mises Daily Article is a great piece by Arthur Foulkes entitled In Defense of Employment-at-Will. It is a well written piece that goes straight to the heart of one of the major problems facing the economic stability of our country today.

One paragraph in particular really caught my eye:
Scarcity is the natural state of mankind. Abundance, on the other hand, only comes about after people have applied their labor to their natural surroundings. In other words, scarcity is held at bay only by productivity or "work." Therefore to assert that a man's sustenance—his freedom from scarcity—is a basic right necessarily implies that another man must be forced to provide it whether he wishes to or not. If he does not wish to, then the "individual freedom" of the first man can only be bought at the cost of some degree of freedom from the second, who must be coerced, by threat of force, to provide for the first. Indeed, this is tantamount to slavery. (emphasis in original)

The reason this stands out is because it applies not only to employment, but it illustrates the very differences which separate those seeking true freedom and those looking to enslave us to the "needs" of our fellow men by using false rights (positive rights) and hollow calls for "individual freedom," an idea of which they have no true concept.

The conflation of "positive rights" with actual "negative rights" serves to obscure the whole concept of rights, the outcome of which is necessarily a reduction of, and cavalier attitude towards, individual liberty.

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Copyright © S Michael Moore 2005