In your opinion, does the state have the right to redistribute wealth from some people to others? Why or why not?
Property redistribution, (also known as the welfare state), is not only immoral, but a legal obstruction of my inalienable (birth) rights to liberty and property. Should another person have a greater need for my property (money) more than I do, it would be up to me to voluntarily help that other person. For the government to step in and take a portion of my income and give it to someone else is theft by coercion (threat of force). The welfare state impedes upon both my rights to not have my property stolen, and to not have my freedom (liberties) obstructed.
1.) Is there a “right of free speech” in the abstract, or is the question of free speech at root a matter of property rights?
Free speech, while being an essential human right, stands only on the basis of property rights. When property and human rights are separated, human rights become inconsistent and imprecise at best. They must instead, for understandings sake, be viewed as two pieces of the same thing, (rather than two different things). For example, if I were to rush into a movie theater shouting “Fire! Run! The theater is on fire!” I would get thrown out. I would not be thrown out because I was exercising my freedom of speech, but because I was on someone else’s property, and I was violating the set rules that they have on their property. I would be thrown out because I yelled (which is against the owner’s rules), not because of what I yelled.
2.) Explain the difference between positive and negative rights, using at least one example.
Negative rights are rights that simply require the absence of interference from others; for example, the rights to life, liberty, and property. More specifically, the right not to be killed, the right to not have my liberties infringed upon, and the right to not have my property stolen. Positive rights on the other hand place burdens on some people to obtain specific benefits for others. Positive rights are things that are all especially desirable, but not technically human rights; the reason for this is that positive rights may only be obtained through plunder and coercion.
Positive rights create conflict (between positive and negative rights) because, one’s negative rights will never infringe upon another’s (negative) rights. Positive rights however (in every case) will infringe upon one’s negative rights not to have their property (money) stolen. Negative rights require only self responsibility and mindfulness of others, whereas positive rights violate people’s negative rights (God given/birth rights) and incite threat-assisted theft.