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There is No Right to Privacy

by Walter Block, Mises:

Don’t get me wrong. I am a BIG fan of Edward Snowden, Bradley Manning, Julian Assange, Daniel Ellsberg and all other whistleblowers who have undermined the legitimacy of the state apparatus. I go further; no one is a greater supporter of these heroic men than me. So when I say there is no right to privacy, this should not be interpreted as in any way a criticism of them. Rather I am attempting to call into account numerous libertarians, all of whom should know better, when they write in support of these magnificent men and say things like: “The liberty of which I write is the right to privacy: the right to be left alone. The Framers jealously and zealously guarded this right by imposing upon government agents intentionally onerous burdens before letting them invade it.”

There is no right to privacy; none at all. It is not a negative right, all of which are supported by libertarian theory; e.g., the right not to be molested, murdered, raped, etc. Rather, the so called right to privacy is a so called “positive right,” as in the “right” to food, clothing, shelter, welfare, etc.

Read More @ Mises.ca

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