Reply To: Public works, art, and classical liberal Austrian economists



If I came to your house with a gun, took money from you, but as I was doing so told you about how I was going to take this money and feed and shelter over one thousand homeless people, does it morally change the act of robbery?

Frederic Bastiat might have said it best in “The Law” with:

“Socialism, like the ancient ideas from which it springs, confuses the distinction between government and society. As a result of this, every time we object to a thing being done by government, the socialists conclude that we object to its being done at all. We disapprove of state education. Then the socialists say that we are opposed to any education. We object to a state religion. Then the socialists say that we want no religion at all. We object to a state-enforced equality. Then they say that we are against equality. And so on, and so on. It is as if the socialists were to accuse us of not wanting persons to eat because we do not want the state to raise grain.”

Taxation is still an act of removing from someone by violent means a part of their earned wealth. Spending it “responsibly” or “irresponsibly” does not change the fact that taxation was theft.

I might be wrong on this point, and if I am please call a point of order here, but the concepts of what is held up as a Classical Liberal were seeds not yet planted until The Enlightenment era’s a few hundred years or so after Western Civilization to 1500 AD.