Saturday, May 28, 2005

The right to roam

Here's a good example of a "right" vs a freedom. It's a atrractive one. "Ramblers" have been given the right to roam freely over huge areas of Britain by a generous government.

But where did the Government get this "right" from? Did it buy the land? Did it compensate the owners for granting others "rights" over their property? Will it compensate the landowners for damage caused to crops, fences or livestock?

Of course it didn't pay. Of course it didn't - and won't - compensate. It would not even occur to it. In the black soul of this Government, resides the core belief - unspoken because yet unacceptable - that every piece of Britain and everything in it belongs to the State, to be disposed of as it pleases.

If you exercise this "right" of yours, remember where it came from. It was stolen from others by force. As you walk across their land, be careful with what remains of their property. Your own - humble or great - is just as vulnerable as the power of the State grows relentlessly.

As Barry Goldwater said, "...a government big enough to give you everything you want is big enough to take it all away..."

1 comment:

Steve said...

As the land itself was stolen from common use by the Enclosure Acts. If you go back far enough, we all had the right to roam before people began to use their political power to fence off the land and exclude others. The "Right to Roam" is just redressing the balance a bit. If people damage livestock or crops, there are still laws to punish them.