Sorry Liz and Bernie—For a country to be free and prosperous private property rights must be sacred

Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, and most other Democratic presidential candidates  proclaim support for either outright socialism or policies that are very much like socialism in nature.  At the very heart of all of these policies is a diminishment of private property rights. 

The founding fathers of the United States understood that the right to acquire property and the right to use that property as wished where two of the most important God-given natural rights, rights that were essential for this nation to be both prosperous and free. That was a frequent topic found in their writing.

John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, and the rest of the founding fathers of the United States received a great deal of their education about the essential nature of private property rights from John Locke’s Second Treatise of Government.  Here is a quote from Ch. V, sec. 27.  As you can see from this quote, money earned in the form of wages is one of the most crucial forms of private property.  It was written in 1689 and it is also the work that influenced the writing of the Declaration of Independence and the US Constitution the most.

Every individual man has a property in his own person.  this is something that nobody else has any right to. The labour of his body and the work of his hands, we may say, are strictly his. So when he takes something from the state that nature has provided and left it in, he mixes his labour with it, thus joining to it something that is his own; and in that way he makes it his property. He has removed the item from the common state that nature has placed it in, and through this labour the item has had annexed to it something that excludes the common right of other men: for this labour is unquestionably the property of the labourer, so no other man can have a right to anything the labour is joined to—at least where there is enough, and as good, left in common for others

This quote from chapter 5 of Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith makes it absolutely clear that the money paid to an individual to perform work is the same as the labor itself and both are the property solely of the individual.  Progressives do not understand that at all. 

Labour was the first price, the original purchase-money that was paid for all things. It was not by gold or by silver, but by labour, that all the wealth of the world was originally purchased; and its value, to those who possess it, and who want to exchange it for some new productions, is precisely equal to the quantity of labour which it can enable them to purchase or command.

John Adams had this to say about the importance of private property when he wrote The Defense of the Constitutions of Government of the United States in1787.

Property is surely a right of mankind as really as liberty. Perhaps, at first, prejudice, habit, shame or fear, principle or religion, would restrain the poor from attacking the rich, and the idle from usurping on the industrious; but the time would not be long before courage and enterprise would come, and pretexts be invented by degrees, to countenance the majority in dividing all the property among them, or at least, in sharing it equally with its present possessors. Debts would be abolished first; taxes laid heavy on the rich, and not at all on the others; and at last a downright equal division of every thing be demanded, and voted. What would be the consequence of this? The idle, the vicious, the intemperate, would rush into the utmost extravagance of debauchery, sell and spend all their share, and then demand a new division of those who purchased from them. The moment the idea is admitted into society, that property is not as sacred as the laws of God, and that there is not a force of law and public justice to protect it, anarchy and tyranny commence. If “Thou shalt not covet,” and “Thou shalt not steal,” were not commandments of Heaven, they must be made inviolable precepts in every society, before it can be civilized or made free.

Thomas Jefferson wrote this about property in a letter to Samuel Kercheval

The true foundation of republican government is the equal right of every citizen, in his person and property, and in their management.

In this quote from a letter to Pierre Samuel Du Pont de Nemours, Thomas Jefferson echoes John Locke.

A right to property is founded in our natural wants, in the means with which we are endowed to satisfy these wants, and the right to what we acquire by those means without violating the similar rights of other sensible beings.

Milton Friedman had this to say about private property in the interview “Free to Choose”: A Conversation with Milton Friedman

I think that nothing is so important for freedom as recognizing in the law each individual’s natural right to property, and giving individuals a sense that they own something that they’re responsible for, that they have control over, and that they can dispose of

Here is one last quote on this subject, this one from the essay Will Property Rights Return? written by my favorite author Thomas Sowell

Both free speech rights and property rights belong legally to individuals, but their real function is social, to benefit vast numbers of people who do not themselves exercise these rights.

…and there’s more to that poll concerning the Black Vote than meets the eye.

Yesterday I linked to a an instapundit post that noted that the in a recent poll 32% of black men preferred the re-election of Trump to any democrat nominee. Yet let’s take a look at the opening lines of the story that contained this incredible information:

An overwhelming majority of black voters — 85 percent — said in a new Hill-HarrisX poll that they would choose any Democratic presidential candidate over President Trump in an election The survey, which was released on Monday, found this sentiment to be particularly true among black voters along partisan lines.

That story is from The Hill, and the headline says: Poll: Overwhelming majority of black voters back any 2020 Democrat over Trump. The only problem is when when you look at the actual poll vs the spin of the story it doesn’t look very good for the left. In addition to what Mr. Bernstein spotted there were two other data points that are pretty significant:

  1. The poll sampled more that two women for every man on presidential preference. That’s over 67% women on that pol! That’s quite a gender gap!
  2. Of the black men polled 3% were republican and 21% were independent. That means that if every single republican and independent man in the poll supported Trump then there would still be 8 percent of black Democrat men who want Trump to win in 2020.

That’s bad enough but there is something even funnier going on here: there seems to be two different pools of people being polled. The preference for president question has a sample size of 210, but the poll in general has a sample size of 1200.

Over 1000 missing people.

Oddly enough the story doesn’t note this discrepancy let alone explain it, nor does it touch on the skew in the presidential preference question 67% women , vs everyone in the poll 57%.

I’m sure there is a perfect innocent explanation for this that I’m completely missing that has absolutely nothing to do with the attempt to convince people that the president’s economy and policies might be leading to a historic realignment that could change the face of the American political scene for decades.

After all the media would not try to manipulate the public for political reasons would they?