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"Consent of the governed"?

Discussion in 'Freedom and Liberty' started by Tango3, Jun 2, 2010.

  1. Tango3

    Tango3 Aimless wanderer

    interesting article( thread topic unashamedly ripped off from claire wolfe's)
    "mental militia forum"( Usually good reading...) http://www.thementalmilitia.com/forums/
    Consent of the Governed?

    By Robert Higgs on Jun 1, 2010 in Civil Society, Liberty, Morality, Personal Liberty, Philosophy, Power, Surveillance, Taxation, The State

    What gives some people the right to rule others? At least since John Locke’s time, the most common and seemingly compelling answer has been “the consent of the governed.” When the North American revolutionaries set out to justify their secession from the British Empire, they declared, among other things: “Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just Powers from the Consent of the Governed.”

    This sounds good, especially if one doesn’t think about it very hard or very long, but the harder and longer one thinks about it, the more problematic it becomes.
    One question after another comes to mind. Must every person consent? If not, how many must, and what options do those who do not consent have? What form must the consent take ― verbal, written, explicit, implicit? If implicit, how is it to be registered? Given that the composition of society is constantly changing, owing to births, deaths, and international migration, how often must the rulers confirm that they retain the consent of the governed? And so on and on. Political legitimacy, it would appear, presents a multitude of difficulties when we move from the realm of theoretical abstraction to that of practical realization.

    more at:

    Consent of the Governed? | The Beacon
  2. Byte

    Byte Monkey+++

    Excellent read! A must read for ever citizen of these United States! [freedom]

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