Thursday, October 30, 2014
What Should Government's Role Be?
What should be government's role? Is a question everyone should be familiar with. It is the question I use when I am curious about another person's political views. Asking a person what party they belong does not help me understand: Republican, Democrat, Independent, or Libertarian mean different things to different people and many times starts them thinking in a combative way. But, if a person can answer the simple question of what the government's role should be, then I know where they stand. My view on what government's role should be is boiled down to enforcing property rights. So I am always asking myself this question, "what's governments role in this area?" Most of the time the my answer to the question, "should government be involved?" is "no" right off the bat. I've asked this question on a few new areas recently, area's I've given little or no thought to before.
One of these areas, is the idea of private courts instead of public courts. Before I've always dismissed this idea as crazy before given it any thought. I thought without the courts set up by the government, there would be chaos everywhere since there would be no universal court system to enforce laws. However, now I believe private courts could do the job well. How this would work, an individual would have the choice to be a customer of a court system. Whenever a crime is committed against an individual, one would go to their court to have a trial. If the defendant belongs to the same private court as the plaintiff, since they have the same court, then that court decision is binding. If the defendant belongs to a different private court than the plaintiff, then both courts can have separate trials. If each court has a different verdict, then the two courts can either negotiate between themselves or if that doesn't work, go to an arbitrator. I'm afraid this arbitrator would have to be the government though. This is because a private court 'A' could always rule in favor of their customers when a trial was between one of their customers and another person who not a customer of this particular court. So if another court 'B' would come to different outcome than court 'A', court 'A' could just stall and never agree on another private entity to be the arbitrator since court 'A' knows its verdict is wrong. There would have to be some force to get an outcome between 'A's and 'B's different verdicts. If there is a private way to resolve this problem of a rogue court, I would love to know what it is.
After I came to the realization that a private court system would be feasible, I pondered if national defense could be privatized. I've thought of different ways this would look. The first way was just everyone using what weapons they owned to fight back an invasion. Some people might have just have a hunting rifle, others might have tank or something, but this disorganized group could never protect itself from another country's organized military. Then I went on to imagine a several private military groups an individual could pay into, and the private military would protect that person from an invading country. However, to repel an invasion all groups would have to work together, so why not have only one group? This would be just the same as national military. I can't think of a scenario where a private option would be better than a nation military, unless the nation military abused its power. It would be critical to have the national military set up in way where it did not abuse its power.I would encourage everyone to ask themselves "what the role of government should be?" Where is government needed and where should government stay out of because a private option is better?