Monday, June 14, 2010

The authority of the state

More from Adam Smith:
Commerce and manufactures can seldom flourish long in any state which does not enjoy a regular administration of justice, in which people do not feel themselves secure in the possession of their property, in which the faith of contracts is not supported by law, and in which the authority of the state is not supposed to be regularly employed in enforcing the payment of debts from all those who are able to pay.
From An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations (Book 5, Chapter 3) - 1776.  The entire text can be found here.  Smith's observations are highly relevant today.

The "regular administration of justice" has been disrupted.  For example, Christopher Coates, the former career head of the Voting Section in the Civil Rights Division was forced out of the DOJ and Voting Section lawyer J. Christian Adams has been told by the DOJ to ignore a subpoena from the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights. Coates spoke about his experience, Adams has been denied the right.

People cannot feel themselves "secure in the possession of their property" because such assets have been confiscated. The "faith of contracts .. supported by law" has been abrogated by the state. I give you the GM and Chrysler bondholders as examples.

"The authority of the state," far from enforcing the payment of debts, is being wielded to force prudent citizens to pay debts they did not incur.

That these actions create uncertainty about the rule of law is even worse than the burdensome taxes and profligate spending which are merely policy implementations of lawlessness in government.

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