"Against nature and within nature there is no freedom."
by:
Ludwig Von Mises
(1881-1973) Economist and social philosopher
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Interesting, he seems to say that what is natual is absolute thus making what is natural a type of dictator. But the problem he fails to address is how do we know what is natural. I guess we could just ask Mike of Norwalk. I believe that people use the term "its natural" or "its just common sense" in order to get their own way. They are really saying "I do it this way and you should to for it is just common sense". I believe that sense is not as common as it use to be. Obviously we are all aware of culture clash between national cultures the foremost being the clash between Aztec and European Societies. Obviously they two totally different views of what is natural and what is common sense. Proof positive therefore that what is natural is not absolutely knowable but is a cultural phenomenon and relational phenomenon. Many in the world would find that the way we distribute health care in this country for example to be unnatural etcetera.
 -- Waffler, Smith     
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    While I admire Von Mises, this seems to be a contradictory statement.
     -- J Carlton, Calgary     
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    I agree J Carlton, makes me wonder what he was thinking when he wrote it.
     -- Anon     
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    I agree with J Carlton also. What was Von Mises drinking when he wrote this?
     -- cal, lewisville, tx     
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    If the reference includes natural law (which I believe it does not) it would be at absolute odds with the founders applied intentions. In nature I'm free to plant my fields, associate with others in commerce, provide for myself, etc. In nature, my rights end at another's nose. In nature I'm free to choose debt or a tangible monetary system that creates real wealth (in a statist theocracy those choices are either curtailed or not available) Those freedoms alone would contradict the statement. Waffler obviously finds gravity, physics, life being noble and honorable, allodial freehold, inalienable rights, and all other natural law issues to be despotic; while finding compelled compliance, victimless crimes, license, larceny with impunity virtues of his desired slave state. Waffler, for one, the founders defined very well what was natural when they established the Constitution (federal government not being able to lawfully do anything unless it was specifically stated in the Constitution).How do we know what is natural? 1 + 1 = 2; as heirs of the King of the universe, life is noble and I am a sovereign - you, and each and every other person is/are also equal sovereigns {no matter their beliefs or actions}. Natural law is not up to any one individual or society's interpretation - gravity and fiscal laws for example are what they are. It is up to man to discover those laws and pass harmonious codes - statutes accordingly.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
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    Waffler, though your observance of common sense does occur at times, when common sense references natural law, it has an entirely different meaning. By way of example: it is common sense not to stick your face in a camp fire; natural law says it is hot and your going to singe some eyebrows; and, it is common sense while standing bare foot in a puddle of water not to stick your finger in a high powered electrical socket; natural law says you will be shocked. I've given you enough examples, are you able to comprehend the founder's understanding of natural law. How about from John Jay, the U.S.'s first Supreme Court Justice: "The moral or natural law was given by the Sovereign of the universe to all mankind; with them it was co-equal, and with them it will be co-existent. Being founded by infinite wisdom and goodness on essential right, which never varies, it can require no amendment or alteration."
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
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    The Amendment portion of the Constitution is not to change a never varying law, but rather how such eternal law is to be administered for the increased understanding and betterment of each sovereign individual.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
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    I'd like to know the context in which this was said. Are we free from the need to breathe or eat? Do we not have responsibilities if we want to be 'free'? Freedom means responsibility, and in nature, we have only to survive. Maybe that is what Mises means... ?
     -- E Archer, NYC     
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    I think Mies' construction is very complete and accurate. What he is saying is that man cannot fight against or change natural law such as gravity for example. Further that gravity and the power of plants to grow towards the sun are in check, the plant has no freedom to choose to lay flat or grow without limit. If it grows to high gravity will pull or bend it over. Sorry for the lousy examples but this is what I think he means. What this has to do with socio-economic and political life I have no idea. Man and his socities and governments do not follow natural law. How Mike can think that The Constitution follows Natural Law is beyond me. It gave the South the "right" to count male adult slaves as population towards determining representation in Congress but did not allow those represented people to vote or be free. The Constitution was anything but Natual Law. It was a compromise between competing social and regional and other types of forces. If it were based on Natual Law like Mies states their would have been no arguments for or against it,
     -- Waffler, Smith     
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    Waffler, the Constitution has never given or taken away any rights, nor was it intended to. Evil men have used your argument (the Constitution gives rights) ad nauseam to justify compelled compliance, control, illogical methodology, and all forms of unlawful / unconstitutional acts. All legal philosophers from Socrates / Plato to the Constitutional founders, with the exception of a few Jewish scholars, described natural law in the abstract of Greek philosophical logic and reason. Such description left open justification for despotism and tyranny. All that was needed to rationalize malpractice / malfeasance was to tie a moral, a virtue, or that which is correct to a desired act. The founders looked to ancient Israel over all examples (using the biblical experiences and examples for the premise of law) to establish an outline for which statutes could be measured. In looking at all societies (Greek, Roman, Persia, etc.) for principle application, they modified the Greek evolved philosophies of natural law with an additional eternal nature and cause and effect. As stated, We hold these truths self evident. Evidenced by Jay's comment in my above post, and the earliest of judicial rulings, natural law in American Jurisprudence was to be that law (by way of logic, reason, history, experience, etc. - that which is universally consistent, unchangeable, and inalienable) which existed prior to man's sojourn on this orb and will be here after he is gone. The Constitution is not law but rather, an outline at which man's adventures in government are limited to legislating, judging, and enforcing codes - statutes that are in harmony with law. If such codes - statutes are inharmonious with natural law they are ab inito ineffective and unenforceable. That hasn't stopped man's inhumanity to man. As you've stated: man and his societies and government do not follow natural law, as evidenced by and including compelled compliance, license, victimless crimes, larceny, slavery, etc.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
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    Very well, said, Mike! That last post is a keeper.
     -- E Archer, NYC     
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    The constitution has nothing to do with natural laws like earth science, botany, physics or gravity. It gave the state the right to appoint its own Senators rather than have them be elected by the people of the state. Which was natual law the original constitutional provisoion or the amended provision. I would assume guys like Mike woudl say the original was natural and the current state of amended affairs is unnatural. He would be wrong either way. Neither position has anything to do with the natural as in the categories of law I stated above - physical sciences, botany etcetera. Some might however argue that election by the people is natural and the appointment is wrong. What this example proves is that "what is thought natural" changes from time to tiem or at the whimsy of people. What should be natural is that people have the right to choose and state what is natural and it should not be dictated by some ole men in the Constitution or by modern dictators either.
     -- Waffler, Smith     
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    Waffler, at least the pride of your ignorance, unwillingness to accept freedom, liberty, and a lawful existence, and your misdirection unconstitutional jurisprudence rhetoric stays consistent. That very literally defines the difference between us. I prefer the consistency of natural law as I've explained it i.e. the 'rule of law' with minimum codes - statutes and government to your preferred ever expanding, ever changing 'rule of man' with its subsequent slavery. I am free when I direct my own paths, you are free when your actions are defined for you and are then compelled. My rights are inalienable, yours are given by an organic hegemony's statist theocracy, I recognize a crime when an innocent third party, or property is injured. Your patronage is with those that invent penalties against the innocent for control's sake and profiteering only. I believe larceny to be unlawful no matter the perpetrator. You justify larceny as a means to prosperity and charity.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
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    My trist is in the people that is the people of today not the people of yesterrday. That means that I have some degree of trust in my own abilities to make judfgements and do not have to rely on Jefferson, or Hamilton etceterra.
     -- Waffler, Smith     
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    Waffler, what you have said is that the regularity, consistency, etc. of earth / physical science, botany, physics, and gravity are not definitive segments of law. That is incorrect. You've alluded to, that we as corporeal / political beings are not subject to the laws of science, botany, physics, or gravity. That is incorrect. There are also fiscal laws that are natural that subject corporeal man to their bounds. As an auditor you should be familiar with accounting rules that are unchangeable. There are natural laws pertaining to the nobility of life and larceny, though their violation may be more slowly gratified than gravity. If a truth is in fact truth, it is eternal and unchanging. Those truths that Washington, Franklin, Jefferson set forth are as true today as the day they set them forth. They were harmonious with law then, they are harmonious with law today. Neither you or I have to depend on any corporeal individual previous, our relationships and actions are measured by the same law as measured those founding fathers. Those unlawful despotisms and tyrannies of yesterday are no different because they are being played out today. The unlawful despotisms and tyrannies of today may be unequaled a little over 200 years ago.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
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    Mike the difference in our positions as you stated in you stated above is whether one is talking about ones personal liberty and freedom or the liberty and freedom of the people as a whole. You have no concept of "the people" as a whole only of the person singular. I agree that sometimes to two concepts are not entirely in sync. As I have stated before culture and mannners and laws and ways of doing things often derived from the people as a whole. Seldom from an individual. When the people as a whole say what is natural in a cio-political arena then that is what is natural. Now as a member of the people you can have your say but you are not the people. Resond to the fact that constitution allowed for counting male slaves as part of the represnted population but did not allow them to vote. Now explain how that little insertion fits into your idealistic view that The Constitution and the men who wrote it were some king of Naturalistic Gods!
     -- Waffler, Smith     
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