Friday, June 17, 2011

The Anti-Concept of Fairness

By the Left Coast Rebel

This post was inspired by "What is "Fair"?" at Liberty Unbound, which got me a-thinking this morning.

Just What is This Fairness I keep Hearing About and Where can I get Some?

Any of the numerous times that I have heard the chief collectivist in the White House proclaim how much the United States values "fairness" in our tax system, markets, "national" income, etc., I cringe, wince, yell and throw things at the television and/or perform repeated face palms.

I get so irritated by the uses of a anti-concept like "fairness" because it is an incredibly subjective term dependant upon one's worldview.

How Can a Guy as "Smart" as Obama Believe in Such a Fallacy?

Bringing up "fairness" (specifically in taxes and the iron fist of government power) begs several questions. Every time you hear King Obama mention it, think of a few simple scenarios and questions:

Fair to whom? A Republican-appointed bean counter? A Democrat-selected Czar? A committee that has control over your life, public life, a city or state? Fairness determined by a compromised President? Your neighbor? A Che Guevera-lusting college professor that thinks communism is fair? An idiotic, brain-cell-challenged teenager that is just lazy and likes to think that "fairness" is an 24/7 X-Box-playing government-subsidized lifestyle? A union-thug demanding the overwhelming majority of your income simply because they wake up in the morning? (pictured at right).

Isn't it so much better for markets and individuals to be the final arbiter in deciding that which is fair? For instance, I don't think that it is "fair" for me to pay progressively higher tax rates on my personal income simply because I work 12 hours-a-day and put a lot more effort into my career than my fat, lazy 12-pack-a-day neighbor does. I think that progressive taxation limits my income potential, choices and liberty. I, as a responsible adult individual should be allowed to pursue my career without fear of penalization via. progressive overlord concepts of that which is fair. My income is my property and without it, I am deprived of my personal freedom.

Again, "fairness" is an anti-concept, paraphrased by the Ayn Rand Lexicon site, as:
An anti-concept is an unnecessary and rationally unusable term designed to replace and obliterate some legitimate concept. The use of anti-concepts gives the listeners a sense of approximate understanding. But in the realm of cognition, nothing is as bad as the approximate . . . .

I've Seen Fair and Her Name is Socialism

Effectively used by our progressive overlords, fairness replaces and obliterates the unyielding, uncompromisable, nearly forgotten concept that this nation was founded upon: liberty. That's why a government focused on such a non-tangible subjective credo is so dangerous. There is literally nothing in its path to keep it in check. From Barack's psuedo communism to Fidel Castro's real deal, collectivist notions to rob you of your pay check, life and liberty at gunpoint always begin with selling "fair" to a non-thinking public unwilling or unable to weigh the tradeoff of socialism versus human freedom.

For further reading on this topic, please read, "What is "Fair"?" at Liberty Unbound and "C’mon Time to Give Something Back" at Allied Liberty News.

Cross posted to LCR, Libertarian Patriot, Allied Liberty News and Rational Nation.


  1. Socialism is about what's fair for the ruling elites, whether or not the ruled (the people) think it's fair or not.

  2. I'm sorry, but the expression on that guy's t-shirt is just plain scummy. If I ran into a guy wearing that t-shirt, I would think to myslef, "There's one ignorant and unpleasant person." There is no welfare state intentionally provided to the lazy. In fact, America has the weakest welfare state in the developed world.

    Yes, nobody wants to give money to "lazy" people, but sometimes, when we look at the bigger picture (ie. something bigger than just admiringly ogling ourselves in the mirror), we realize that there are things we must do that sometimes lazy people will take advantage of. It's collateral damage, so to speak. We should always try to stop that when we see it - but with hurting people who are unlucky, as opposed to "lazy." The former is more is far more common, especially over the past 5 years.

    Yes, fairness can be a subjective term, but in this context it means 'responsible, responsive, ethical governance.' Yes, they get it wrong plenty, and yes, human nature being what it is, people take advantage sometimes. But the idea is that we do what we can for domestic tranquility, the general welfare, and the the "blessings" of liberty.

    That's what "fairness" means in this context. You can argue over the semantics, or the details of how we go about it, but unless you think our Constitution is nothing but a piece of used toilet paper, "fairness" is foundational concept of our republic.

    There is NO arguing that. Read the the Constitituion. If you don't like the Constitution, then fine, argue against that.


  3. It has always been a point of concern for me just how many lazy people I have had working for me over the years, as well as others I've known, who considered themselves "unlucky".

    Fairness remains an anti concept JMJ. It has always has been just that. Unless of course you are a progressive.

  4. Jersey apparently thinks that "fairness" means stealing from people and giving that stolen property to others. That's what scummy is.

  5. Nobody's stealing, Bastiat, my narcissistic friend. America offers the opportunity to become sucessful, and you have to buy into that if you want to make this great experiment in democracy work.

    Again, if you guys have a problem with the Constitution, then come out with it. Don't be afraid.


  6. JMJ - First, we are not a democracy, never have been. We ARE representative republic, always have been.

    Second, the Constitution has no provisions for the redistribution of wealth and entitlement programs. It allowed for taxation to fund the legitimate business of government. Such as national defense, and managing international obligations and affairs ETC.


  7. Jersey, I ask you again. Why are you so afraid of liberty?

  8. JMJ said: "Nobody's stealing, Bastiat, my narcissistic friend."

    A gentle suggestion to become more civicially informed.

    In taxation, people forcibly take your property, threatening violence (which can include killing you) if you don't turn your own property to them.

    How is this different from theft"

  9. Oh God, Les - again with the semantics? We are a representative constitutional DEMOCRACY. That's what a CONSTITUTIONAL REPUBLIC is. We are a type of indirect (and sometimes direct) democracy.

    The constitution allows for taxes four times in the text. FOUR TIMES. The preamble specifies the general purpose of the state, and directs congress, the executive, and the courts to address care for the general welfare of the nation.

    It's YOU GUYS who've lost in the courts and elections over and over again, since our Founding, the majority of the time, your argument that the government can't do things you don't like. The fact of the matter is that these things are simply things you don't like - they are NOT unconstitutional.

    dmarks, in loony land, where there are no taxes, that argument may make sense. But in the real world it is very simply: the government has the constitutional prerogative to tax your monetary gains. It is how we pay for the infrastructure, institutions, security, and stablity of the nation. It is not stealing. It is YOU PAYING YOUR FAIR SHARE. You are more than welcome to do business someplace else. Good luck in Somalia.



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