Thursday, April 21, 2011

I'm Not The Only Radical

Great news!! In Georgia, of all places, someone introduced a bill that disputes the notion that driving (use of public thoroughfares), is a privilege instead of a right. I've never gone along with that idea--that driving or any other exercise of freedom is a privilege instead of a right. Who decides who has the right to decide if I can exercise my rights? You cannot grant me privileges which involve my own life and rights. Privilege to travel?

People still have to drive safely--as if they do now--ever driven in Atlanta?--but they can't be forced to be licensed in order to travel.

Georgia Assembly
10 LC 34 2350
House Bill 875

By: Representative Franklin of the 43rd

Go representative Franklin.

At first this sounds so radical and scary, but that is mostly because of conditioning to believe the behavior control and security of the government works out well. I tend to think the idea of a driver's licence was first seen as a source of revenue, then as a way of keeping track of people so they could be hit up for more money later, and the very least of the motives had a thing to do with safety.

I'm astounded that an elected official anywhere would seriously challenge such an accepted, though nefarious, institution.

When something has been hammered into your mind long enough, you tend to accept it and even defend it. Facts often get in the way, and reason does as well.

It's what makes it so easy for wars to keep being waged. Except we don't call it war. That is just one example.

There are many things that are considered necessary, and which have become accepted facets of government and restrictions on rights which we could do without. Those who think the increase in war, crime, sociopathic gang behavior, failing schools, etc. is somehow not the fault of governmental policies and encroachment upon life, would disagree with me. I believe the policies of the last 100 years, and more, have been the root of most evil. There are a couple of things which have gone counter to that, but the reality is these were used to smokescreen very strong moves to restrict the universal rights of all.

I'm back to searching for a hollow tree, far away from anything I know--not sure I will survive in the world as I know it.
That part is my fault.

I don't expect anyone to agree with me, and I know some who are very big on the idea that everything is a privilege, not a right. Guess we'll just continue to disagree, but one day the squeeze of the state will affect your life in an unpleasant manner and you will wonder how it happened.

I suppose I am one who feels at least as threatened, or more, by government than I do by those from which it claims to protect me. Seriously, I do not automatically trust police or government officials regarding any matters whatsoever. You never know what you will get, and it is not right that such human beings have that power which can be used as a weapon on a whim. More power, in many ways, than the power a punk weilds when he holds a gun. Not such a different mentality in many cases.

Something is wrong with the set up when punks and police are often equally antisocial. It's because 90% of police work involves matters which aren't the proper function of government, and which violate basic rights and freedom. Also the methods are generally dishonest and based on the assumption that the average citizen is a a criminal who needs to be caught and trapped doing something evil, like speeding, growing a pot plant, minding his own business without prior permission.

BOTTOM LINE: The main problem is that packing to many people together too tightly, combined with too much central authority over their lives makes for trouble on all fronts. And the temptation to get away from filtering restrictions through the test of if an act constitutes force or fraud--restricts the rights of others--seems too great to resist. Hence you often hear a defense of "We've done nothing illegal" when there has actually been an act of deception or force.

UPDATE: re: right vs privilege -- even if I agree with licensing, (I'm on the fence on that issue), if I demonstrate the skill to safely operate a machine, vehicle, perform a task, etc. it is my right, then to undertake that endeavor. Privilege implies that my right to freely travel, or work, is bestowed upon me by some higher authority, and can for any reason be revoked. I hold that it is my right as long as I am not infringing on the ability of others to exercise their rights.

That is why I do not shout down people with whom I disagree in a public forum. That is not exercising free speech, it is attempting to curb the exercise of that right by the one with whom I disagree.

Right to travel freely is even addressed in the Magna Carta. People forget that the Bill of Rights was limited and intended to reinforce the idea that rights not granted to the government were retained by the people. I tend to believe it is my right to do whatever I please within bounds of not violating rights of others. Many of those rights I would not exercise, like putting opiates in my oatmeal or molesting a particularly affectionate sheep.


  1. I didn't read the bill, but I also see driving as a priviledge, not a right. A priviledge can be taken away, a right (like right to vote, right to speak freely, etc.) can't. If more people would realise that many things they take for granted are priviledges, not rights, they might treasure them more and be more careful about them.

  2. An abused right can be taken away. When one infringes on the rights of others then that person has to be contained.
    I absolutely disagree that driving or doing anything else, if not endangering or infringing on rights of others, is a privilege.


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