It's an amazing thing to me to watch the young people of today come out in support of Socialism. I often hear the people speaking out for Socialism defending the right to health care, jobs, education, housing and many other items. While I think we're all for the right to have those things, I think we have a fundamental disagreement on what an actual right is. So to set the stage, here are a few definitions from my perspective.
In Constitutional Law, rights are classified as natural, civil, and political. Natural rights are those that are believed to grow out of the nature of the individual human being and depend on her personality, such as the rights to life, liberty, privacy, and the pursuit of happiness. For the purposes of this article, the rights I'm referring to are understood to be natural rights.
Capitalism is defined as the private or corporate ownership of the means of production. While this is primarily an economic system, without some government control, it can very quickly escalate into a system where a few control the masses and ends up being a political system.
Socialism is defined as government or collective ownership of the means of production. While it's often referred to as an economic system, the simple truth is that it cannot be implemented without full governmental control, therefore it ends up being a political system.
Unlike rights, services are sometimes things important to survival, quality of life, comfort or longevity that require the action of others.
So let's start with Rights.
A right is something, such as the freedom of speech, the right to keep and bear arms or the right to life. It requires no action on the part of others.
I can exercise my free speech on a street corner, in a park, on my own property or even on a message board, though I could be subjected to rules at each of those places with the exception of my private property.
Where does a right become a service? Where I require the action of another to assist me.
This website is an exercise of the 1st Amendment right to free speech. I required no one to act on my part. I paid a host to build me a tool to put my thoughts on the world wide web. I had some cash and it was worth less to me than this conduit to the internet. I freely exchanged my money for this portal so I could express my free speech.
This is now a service that I'm purchasing. It's no longer a right, though it's loosely connected to that right because I can say anything I want, so long as it doesn't violate the EULA or cross a line of a call to action.
Rights are absolute, no matter what the intellectuals of society want us to believe. I can say here that I wish the President would die and while disgusting, it would be free speech. What I cannot say is I'm willing to pay someone $500,000 to kill the President. That would be a call to action and not free speech. That's the dirty little secret some don't wish you to know. There are no restrictions on free speech, only causing harm to others and violating their rights. I can yell fire all I want. If I start a riot by yelling fire, it's not the speech in question, it's the action of starting a riot that's causing harm to others and violating their Constitutional rights.
So why is this distinction important? I have the right to decide what kind of health care I want, but I do NOT have the right to force others to work for free to pay the bill. That's the reason Socialism is so tyrannical. It's actually slavery. If you have the right to my services, that means I have no right to charge you for that service. If I'm the only one in this country that can perform a life saving surgery, and you declare health care a right, I must perform that surgery as it's your right to have that surgery. What if I don't want to do that surgery? Can I refuse to do it? Of course not, it would be your right to receive that service, therefore I'm now a slave. While that seems extreme, it's the end game and it's why it's extremely dangerous to declare services that require the action of others a "right".