I really don't have a lot of time to post right now. I work for myself and I don't have a 9 to 5 schedule so this may be all you'll get for awhile...
On the old thread, Joe asked "How is it that you determine truth from falsity?" I wanted to discuss this further before but I asked that you define what "truth" is for me because truth can have many meanings. (And I know we are getting into philosophy here.)
Lyle: ""We all have the right to food. You have plenty of food and Bob over here doesn't, so we're taking your food by force." Meaning you don't have the right to your food, and by extension, no one else does either - all food belongs to the government, essentially, as all "rights" come FROM the government." BINGO! "Human Rights" do come from government. The UN is essentially a world governing body. That's why "Human Rights" and "Natural Rights" are two different things.
Rauðbjorn: "Even the American concept of rights is a political construct." Correct. "Language shapes the way we think..." Totally. That's why these discussions tend to go on to the point that everyone thinks I'm the idiot. I tend to try and shorten them because I know that discussing philosophy fully can take a long long time -- but I get the feeling that that is what this crowd wants. They want to discuss different philosophical constructs.
So... First we must agree on what "truth" is before we can even start to discuss "falsity."
I've emphasized two passages to point out where ubu52 differs from reality. If all government went away we would lose our "human rights" according to ubu52. We wouldn't however lose our "natural rights". That is why any "human right" that violates a "natural right" isn't a right at all, it is an obligation, privilege, or perk, and in a just world it is properly called "charity".
When someone else provides something that you should earn for yourself, it is "charity". Whether that is under the threat of force or not is what makes "charity" different from "theft".
Now lastly, if we can't AGREE ON TRUTH then we can't agree on anything. If I say black is black and ubu52 says "no, black is merely the darkest shade of gray, and white is merely the lightest shade of grey, therefore black and white are really the same" we are obviously not using the same standard. My standard is fixed, black being black and white being white. Ubu52's gray standard that black and white are both gray is fundamentally different, and fundamentally wrong. If black and white are both gray, why do we have a separate word for each?
But that is simply an illustrative argument for the following. If government is the source of rights, then the government can take those "rights" away. Don't believe me? Reference; China, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Rwanda, Yugoslavia, USSR, and Burma.
Government can and will take your life. Where the hell are your "rights" then?
Here is a base truth; Government does not create, government meddles in the form of regulation and redistribution of human activity. If ubu52 cannot fathom that, then ubu52 will hopefully forget how to breath, or move to Tehran.