Writes R. R. Schoettker:
I encountered your article today on “Libertarian Corruption” via RRND. I have had a related contact with Dr. Block where I disagreed with the receipt of SS money. Since this particular context was not addressed in your article I thought I would pass on my comments on this subject to you as well.
The illogical origin of “justifications” for the receipt of “government” (sic) money is generally based on either a naive fallacy or an unethical personal character flaw; or, most usually, a combination of both. The fallacy is the error of believing that money, stolen from an individual and which taking is justified under the excuse of some subsequent request by that individual to reclaim it, is held in some kind of specific account or “trust fund”. The plain fact is that NO such repository, fund or account of any kind exists or ever existed-PERIOD! The expedient rationalization that one is thus somehow retrieving ones own money is totally false. The thieving State spent the funds stolen from you the instant it was taken. It does NOT hold on account any funds for any later withdrawal. You have nothing but the promise (of a pathological lying pack of criminals) that it “may” if it so chooses, respond to your application to receive these moneys back by then stealing anew a fresh portion of plunder from a subsequent set of victims (you included) in order to give it to you.
The ethical flaw, and a disgustingly common one, is the belief that having been the victim of a theft in the past somehow excuses and justifies that person becoming a perpetrator of a new theft when instigated by their “claim” submitted to the State. This is the hoary old mistake of believing that “two wrongs make a right”. I might add that both of these errors are compounded by yet another fallacy: that the State has any money that can legitimately be considered its “own”. The only money that the State has is that which it has previously stolen from the rightful owner or fraudulently created out of thin air by its fiat fabrication. It is my tenet that no consistent libertarian can thus maintain that being the “receiver of stolen goods” is ethical behavior. Those who may acknowledge that the money thus received is stolen and do so anyway because it harms and deprives the State of funds that it would spend on even more sordid ends are just indulging in a callous utilitarianism that sees the end as justifying the means. A wrong is a wrong, and no specious sophistical rationalizing can alter that fact.