Thursday, March 22, 2007

Seizing their assets steals your liberty

A new Bill allowing the state to seize the assets of criminals is not just wrong because those assets will be digested by the maw of the state rather than used to help restore the lives and property of the victims of said criminals, but it's wrong because it completely overturns the basic principle of being considered innocent before the justice system actually proves your guilt.

Susan the Libertarian gets it right, as she so often does. This is an attack on the liberty of all of us -- it just starts with an attack on those people already considered odious.
I know why you might think, 'well, who gives a toss about the likes of gang members, because they're scum' - (and you'd be right about that) - but unfortunately, that is not the point. Not at all.

The 20th century philosopher, Ayn Rand, put it this way: 'In the transition to statism, every infringement of human rights has begun with the suppression of a given right's least attractive practitioners'.

In other, simpler, words: the totalitarians will always start by interfering with the rights of scum like criminal gang members and paedophiles. And then, before you know it, they move onto the rest of us - and people say things like "well, how did that happen?"

It happened because good intentions will ALWAYS be plead for any assumption of power.

Just recall, if you doubt that, how the law introduced to extract the assets of drug king Mr Asia are now used routinely by the IRD to filch from the bank accounts of those the IRD considers too recalcitrant.

LINK: More power to seize criminal assets - Newstalk ZB
On the move to seize assets from individuals suspected of criminal activity - Susan the Libertarian

RELATED: Law, NZ Politics

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Anonymous Eric Crampton said...

The evidence from the US on the use of such asset forfeiture provisions is bloody scary. Why ACT hasn't come out against this one is beyond me.

3/22/2007 03:20:00 pm  
Blogger Lindsay said...

And you could draw a loose parallel with banning corporal punishment at school and now in the home, or banning smoking in public and then in private places. It's all state creep.

3/22/2007 03:32:00 pm  
Blogger PC said...

"Why ACT hasn't come out against this one is beyond me."

Politics. They don't want to be seen to be "going easy" on crims -- not, of course, that they would be. :-/

3/22/2007 03:37:00 pm  

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