Published yesterday, no online version....
To the Editor:
I always enjoy reading letters to the editor, not only for
the opinions expressed on the issues of the day, but also to
see the way writers choose to justify those opinions. More
often than not, their reasoning is riddled with logical
fallacies and outright inaccuracies, and such was the case
with Michael Sullivan's response last week to my letter on
As he rightly mentions, I do indeed believe that it's
"just plain wrong" for the Abington Township
commissioners to steal an 80-year-old widow's property.
However, having raised the question of morality, the
remainder of Mr. Sullivan's letter ignores it completely.
Instead, he rambles on about the mechanics of how and why
the government goes about stealing its citizens' property.
That's called "begging the question", because nowhere
do I question that "right" (which is the wrong word -
only natural persons have "rights"). Rather, I question
the morality of the commissioners stealing Mrs. Patane's
Mr. Sullivan likens eminent domain to taxation, but think of
it this way: Although the government has the "power"
(not the "right", thank you) to tax income via the 16th
Amendment, it would surely be immoral to tax 100 percent of
a citizen's income. Similarly, I maintain it's immoral
to steal a widow's property; and as a citizen, it is one
of my inalienable rights to petition the government and its
agents for a redress of grievances. That was the purpose of
our highly-successful rally the other day, where
approximately 75 people from all walks of life braved foul
weather to demonstrate their displeasure with the taking.
Certainly Mr. Sullivan is entitled to his opinion, but I
draw the line when he starts calling me names, particularly
inaccurate ones. I am not "right wing", nor is it
"extreme" or serve a "narrow political purpose" to
defend an old widow. Like most people, I firmly believe
it's the right thing to do. Nor am I, or any of the rally
organizers, part of any "tea party revolution" that he
accuses me of "purposefully misunderstanding". How's
that again? Am I a part of it or am I not? Apparently, the
only misunderstanding here is on Mr. Sullivan's part,
especially when he refers to Mrs. Patane's property as
"abandoned". As the official record clearly shows, the
property is being properly maintained, all taxes are paid,
and there are no safety or code enforcement issues. I'd
hardly call that abandoned.
The unrefuted bottom line remains that it's just plain
wrong to steal an old widow's property. Period. For
those who agree with that not-so-revolutionary concept,
please join us at the next rally in support of Mrs.
Patane's property rights, which will be held at 7 PM on
Thursday, November 12th, in the parking lot behind the
Abington Township building, 1176 Old York Road (next to the
Abington Hospital), immediately prior to the
commissioners' monthly meeting. And perhaps after the
rally, you can stop in at their meeting to let the
commissioners know that you, too, think it's morally
repugnant to abuse the power of government to steal a
law-abiding widow's property, regardless of its legality.
Libertarian for Pennsylvania Governor (1998, 2002)
Past Chair, Libertarian Party of Pennsylvania [masked])
c/o PO Box 260
Cheltenham, Penna. USPO 19012
(215) Krawchuk (fax)
> -----Original Message-----
> From: [address removed]
> [mailto:[address removed]]On
> Behalf Of James Babb
> Sent: Monday, October 26,[masked]:22 PM
> To: [address removed]
> Subject: [libertarian-251] Property rights LTE contest (win
> some silver)
> Hi Folks,
> Attached is a letter published in Montgomery Newspapers
> glorifying the
> "right" of government to grab private property and
> criticizing "right-
> wing" libertarians for daring to rally in defense of individual
> rights. You can also download the letter image here:
> I'm offering 1 oz of silver for each response letter
> published. I'm
> also offering another ounce for the best letter (published or not).
> Judging will be based on impact, wit and a demonstration of
> from first principles. The deadline for submissions is
> Friday, 10/30.
> Time is short.
> Send your responses to [address removed] and please CC this
> group and [address removed].
> Letters should reference the attached letter and be brief. Include
> your full contact information so the paper can verify your
> Feel free to share this with anyone you think may be interested.
> Jim Babb
> Please Note: If you hit "REPLY", your message will be sent
> to everyone on this mailing list ([address removed])
> This message was sent by James Babb ([address removed])
> from The Montgomery County Libertarian Party Meetup Group.
> To learn more about James Babb, visit his/her member
> profile: http://libertaria...
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> Meetup Inc. PO Box 4668 #37895 New York, New York
>[masked] | [address removed]