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Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Responsibility VS Ownership !

All human conflict derives from the ideological conflict between responsibility and ownership.

Responsibility is the measure of how much a person is willing to give, time or resources or even risk, in order to support his ideals. A natural example is that of investing in a child. The child is given his needs from the parents, because the parent idealizes, to a degree, the importance of their child.

Ownership is the attempt to control the ideas of other people. In order for a person to own anything, they must convince others that they (the others) have no power, over the choices of the owner, in regard to the owned object. For example, the only way in which I can own an apple, is if other people accept that my choices about the apple are superior to their own ideas about the apple.

It is possible for both ideologies to overlap:
1. Own & take responsibility, over something.
2. Not own, but take responsibility, over something.
3. Own, but not take responsibility, over something.
4. Not own & not take responsibility, over something.

The greatest conflict of interests is when one person or group decides to take responsibility without ownership, while another person or group decides to take ownership without responsibility. I first tackled this issue over at the FDR forums, here:

I propose that this is best solved by acknowledging that responsibility is a higher ideal than ownership. I do not propose, however, that ownership does not have a right to exist. Only, that in the case of dispute, that side which proves the need for taking responsibility, must be allowed priority, over the side that claims ownership.

First, we recognize the fact that being the owner of something, for example a tree, does not mean that you would always have all the rights to it. If the owner does not take care of the tree, so that it is rotting and might fall on others, then it is fair for others to take responsibility, and cut the tree down, for their own safety. This is in the case of the owner not doing so, beforehand.

Second, we realize that it is not enough to simply disagree with the owner's opinions, but that actual proof is required, for intervention. If it is not evident why intervention must be required, then no intervention should exist! When an owner and an interventor (someone who wants to take responsibility) go to court, in order to resolve a dispute, then it is up to social rule to dictate the result.

This is why we talk and argue our ideas. So, that we can imply what is right and what is wrong, in society, as a whole, and so be able to trust our fellow peoples' decisions.

Eventually, I wanted Stefan Molyneux's opinion in the matter; him being a person I share a lot of views in common with and who is able to debate well, and so sent him an email and received this response:
"I think that everything that is enforced rather than inflicted is superior, [so] I think we agree."
I conclude that he, and many on the forums, sum this idea into, 'we either have a contract or we don't.'

This is my final conclusion, which I consider the most practical:
In order to enforce conflict resolutions, we must decide which person has the higher moral ground. The ideals of the Non-Aggression Principle and Self-Ownership are insufficient for the resolution of conflicts, without proper investigation into the facts and nature of each conflict.
Only when there is no doubt that one side has a clearly higher moral position, over the other, then that side must enjoy the support of the community, as a whole, and of us as individuals, in private.

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