Tuesday, 21 November 2006

Age of independence

The case of the sixteen-year-old who divorced her parents has attracted much interest, and to my mind it shows again how to resolve the various debates over the drinking age, the driving age, the age of consent, the voting age, the age of majority, etc, etc.

Why not just wrap them all up and have one age at which one becomes an independent adult able to make decisions for oneself and to take responsibility for them? The issue is of particular importance to libertarians, since we have to constantly point out that all acts between consenting adults are the business of nobody but those consenting adults -- but at what age does one become a consenting adult? When exactly and in law does one reach the age of independence?

The Libertarianz's proposed Constitution for New Freeland has a simple answer:
The age of independence shall be deemed by law, but the courts may deem an earlier age on application of the child, if the child can demonstrate its independence.
It's a bright line that of necessity is somewhat nominal, but which allows those who wish to be considered as an independent adult to make a claim for that status -- and it allows those who know reasons why they shouldn't be granted that boon the opportunity to point out the reasons why not.

LINK: Constitution for New Freeland - Article 1: Bill of Rights - Free Radical

RELATED: Law, Libertarianism, Politics-NZ,


  1. What do you think the age of independence should be

  2. the fundamental problem you have is that the parent is still liable for maintenance. how fucked up is that

  3. And the good thing is, only those people who can afford the courts system will be able to pay for it. So rich kids get to become independant at a young age if they choose but poor kids have to wait until the statutory date. Sweet deal for poor kids!!

  4. Ah, if you look P-Style we also propose a serious pruning of the court and legal system. There's no reason it needs to be either as time-consuming or expensive as it is now to get justice ... except of course for the monopoly interests of law firms, the sheer amount of legislation the courts need to consider, the number of court cases that the vast amount of legislation makes possible ...

    "What do you think the age of independence should be?"

    Forty-one. :-)

  5. One age? What a novel and sensible idea! One that would never occur to our statist politicians. Also I like the idea of adulthood being based on proof that it has been achieved. After all some are more mature than others.

    P-Style, in The Virtue of Selfishness Ayn Rand explained one potential way to fund courts, police, and the army so that everyone could afford them. I also have a couple of my own that could be added to her one. Especially since there would be no taxes, meaning we have more of our own money. So all kids become independant not just the poor. especially with the prunning PC speaks of.

    I assume 41 is a joke PC? Especially given your comment about people proving their maturity.

  6. Joke! I never joke, especially when I paste smiley face. ;^)

  7. Age of independence is when kids started thinking about dirty things.

  8. So, what's the age of aquiarius?

  9. Lol, that is funny PC! I like your sense of humour.

  10. Yes, Sage, it is.

    Because the key word here is INdependence.

    Whereas this silly little cow wants her cake and wants to eat it too, via Mum & Dad's dough.

    The decision's a disgrace, but with the fuckwits in charge here, I'm really not surprised.


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