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Post 20

Wednesday, February 16, 2005 - 4:20pmSanction this postReply
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Brendan, you wrote: "job opportunities should be open to all." That should be amended to: "morally, job opportunities should be open to all," (all other things being equal, as you said). But to insist that legally they should be open to all is to say that some men's rights are to to be infringed in order to give other men the jobs they want. In a free society, there should be no conflict of rights. Since you grant that no one should have the legal right to a certain job, then a person's rights are not being infringed by the bigot who doesn't want him -- and the bigot's rights are protected, too.

I want to add that instead of turning to the law to convince bigots to act morally, we should turn to economics. Don't patronize people who refuse to hire gays, or blacks, or any minority or majority. Don't patronize them, and denounce them at the top of your lungs. Organize public opinion, and see to it that the business of such people suffers. They won't learn morality, but they might learn something about economics.

Jason, I congratulate you on an excellent article. Today, I think that women are just as guilty as gays and blacks, if not more so, in pushing for the legalizing of morality.. They are demanding "rights" that no self-respecting gay person demands, they are requiring a kind of deification that seemed to go out with button shoes -- that is, to be seen as madonna-like creatures because they bear children, who must therefore be given unlimited time off from their work and unlimited privileges and advantages over other employees. If an employer wants to grant special privileges, that, too, is his right of course; but only if he wants to.

George, have you ever considered getting glasses? That would be simpler than putting Nature to so much work. I feel badly that you have trouble seeing, and I only want to help.

Barbara



Post 21

Wednesday, February 16, 2005 - 9:27pmSanction this postReply
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Jon writes:
>Brendan, I sense something in your position that is on target....But law is different....

Yes, I agree with this point : the law is different. As the solution to any problem, it should be a last resort, and sadly the Left tend to use it as the *first* resort! Thus, they are usually attacking mosquitos with a sawn-off shotgun, and creating more damage than they are curing. This appears to be the case with most anti-discrimination laws, although I may be wrong - I am no expert on the matter.

It seems to me Brendan is, however, quite correct in taking Rand at her word - that if work is a right, and if the government's job is protect individual rights, legal protection of some form could be justified. I don't see there's much point arguing against that *in principle* - other than perhaps to suggest Rand somehow misspoke.

But I think it remains an in-principle issue, as it is difficult to imagine a situation where any law could be effectively enacted. It would have to be a serious problem to begin with, where a religious or racial minority's actual survival was threatened by being excluded from work per se - not just a job at Hooters! There is democracy's basic political obligation to protect minorities to appeal to here as a last resort. But I would recommend, as Barbara does, moral and economic sanctions first and foremost.

- Daniel





Post 22

Thursday, February 17, 2005 - 2:10amSanction this postReply
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Sometimes the crap that gets posted here defies characterisation. First, no self-respecting poster should take any notice of someone who posts with a false name or just a first name. That someone is a coward who ought not to be given the time of day. Second, the idea of telling such a coward that his morality is essentially correct—job opportunities should be open to all–is unspeakable. Job opportunities should be open to those to whom the job-creator wishes to open them. Period. End of story. The job-creator is entitled to select his employees on any basis he wishes. Potential customers are entitled to do the things in protest that Barbara suggests, to be sure. But please, let's not have any PC BS here that says that such protesters are on a morally higher ground than the job-creators.

Galt give me strength, yet again.

Linz





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Post 23

Thursday, February 17, 2005 - 8:02amSanction this postReply
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Not all confusion is crap, including Brendan’s. I can see his full name in his email address on his profile page.

Linz, regarding your last sentence; Are you sure the protesters can’t be on higher moral ground? If I put a sign out in front of my house, “Lawn-boy wanted, fags need not apply” am I automatically on high moral ground just because I am a “job creator”? Higher ground than the people who point out that I am a bigot? Why?

Jon



Post 24

Thursday, February 17, 2005 - 9:13amSanction this postReply
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“Lawn-boy wanted, fags need not apply” am I automatically on high moral ground just because I am a “job creator”?

Insofar as the *job* itself is concerned - yes, you would be.

Now, that particular 'help wanted ' ad would place you on the moral low ground in all other aspects: respect, dignity, intelligence ect... but that does not negate the fact that you have the right to set *whatever* parameters you wish for that job - no matter how ignorant you may be.

The only alternative to this is to have a third party set the standard - ie - the government. At that point you are no longer the *true* owner of that buisness. The need of one man to work is not a mortgage on the rights of the men that can supply that work.

George




Post 25

Thursday, February 17, 2005 - 9:18amSanction this postReply
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Jon wrote: “Lawn-boy wanted, fags need not apply."

That sounds like the policy of the organization I work for, but they don't say it that explicitly.




Post 26

Thursday, February 17, 2005 - 9:35amSanction this postReply
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Me: “Lawn-boy wanted, fags need not apply” am I automatically on high moral ground just because I am a “job creator”?

George: “Insofar as the *job* itself is concerned - yes, you would be.”

I disagree. I think I would have the superior legal ground, superior rights. My morality stinks and is inferior to that of the conscientious persons who loudly object to my social behavior.

Jon



Post 27

Thursday, February 17, 2005 - 11:46amSanction this postReply
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Ethan: “Any attempt by the government to legislate what you can do with your personal property, in this case, someone's company, is an attack on that persons property. It is an initiation of force just as much as them coming in and taking something physically away.”

But if a government agency suspects that personal property is being used in rights violations, they can justifiably confiscate it. Governments can also justifiably pass laws regarding the use of property, from cars to firearms to building standards.

The question isn’t so much about whether or not force can be justified, as what are the proper limits of that force, and I think anti-discrimination laws in employment are justified in the sense that they are an attempt to set up a level playing field in a very important area of our lives, that is, our means of livelihood.

 

Jon: “I understand that you are saying job opportunities must be open to all, not that any particular person must be hired. My example fits—my example does not say that you must work for that particular boss, however, by your logic you are treating him unfairly by removing yourself from the pool he can choose from…”

I don’t think this is consistent with the way the employment market works. Employers typically advertise a job offer, applicants respond to the offer, the employer chooses from the pool, presumably the “best” candidate for the job. So it’s a situation where a contract is offered, and various candidates step forward to accept the offer. Outside of that situation, none of these considerations apply.

So nobody is forcing the employer to offer a job; and nobody is forcing a candidate to apply. But once the offer is made, the employer is required to consider all qualified applicants.

In the case of the applicant, should he be willing to consider the job despite the poly-thing? Of course he should. If he doesn’t like the sound of it, he shouldn’t apply. If you mean the applicant finds the boss creepy, you’re entering a real grey area of personality. You can’t easily establish objective criteria for this sort of thing, whereas factors such as race and gender are more objective characteristics.

 

Nature: “Mmm-hmm. Ain't America great? I take it you live in some barbaric land which lacks this sort of high culture.”

Yeehaa! Where can I find these Hooters girls? We’re not so much barbaric here as backswoods. The best we can at our local is ogle the resident slapper when she’s in her cups. Mind you, she’s not too bad at 3am in a dim light.

“The goal of Hooters is to provide an environment where people can enjoy fine dining while being waited on by people dressed in the above fashion, so for Hooters, “merit” includes looking somewhat like that.”

I’ve no problem with that, whether you want to call those attributes “merits”, “qualifications”, “requirements” or some other word, whatever it takes for the job. So a Hooters’ girl will be a female with certain attributes – big teeth and hair and so on.

But as I say, all other things being equal, I think we should try to ensure a level playing field in employment. As to the impossibility of applying a single law to many circumstances, you may as well abolish all laws, since every law in practice applies to many individual circumstances.

Pete: (quoting Rand): “Just as we have to protect a communist's freedom of speech, even though his doctrines are evil, so we have to protect a racist's right to the use and disposal of his own property.”

Bad analogy. To make this consistent, Rand would also have to grant the communist not just freedom of speech, but also the right to put his doctrines into practice, since she has granted the racist that right. I don’t think she’d be prepared to do that.

Brendan




Post 28

Thursday, February 17, 2005 - 11:43amSanction this postReply
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Jon writes:
>I disagree. I think I would have the superior legal ground, superior rights. My morality stinks and is inferior to that of the conscientious persons who loudly object to my social behavior.

I completely agree! The idea that the Southern bigot is morally better than the able black man he refuses to hire is BS of the highest - or should I say lowest - order. Linz surely cannot mean it when he says that people who protest against such racist atttitudes are no better than the racists themselves.

George Cordero, on the other hand, tries to separate the morality of creating a job from the morality of the attitudes of the creator. But even this - to my mind rather hairsplitting - distinction is pointless, as *no-one is criticising the morality of creating a job*!

- Daniel



Post 29

Thursday, February 17, 2005 - 11:59amSanction this postReply
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Brendan said
I think anti-discrimination laws in employment are justified in the sense that they are an attempt to set up a level playing field in a very important area of our lives, that is, our means of livelihood.

Well, not to use too much hyperbole and slippery-slope arguments but, I hope you'll be happy when the government comes and confiscates anything of yours in the name of equality. The fact is, this type of thing is wrong and Objectivist ethics shows us why. If you aren't an Objectivist (obviously) you should at least understand the nature of Objectivist ethics and politics before trying to debate on an Objectivist forum. Falling back on "well, I just think its good" doesn't wash when dealing with people who espuse a philosophy that holds Objective moral values and has shown why, according to reality, just what your describing is wrong. Equal opportunity is bogus, becasue all people are not equal.

Regards,

Ethan

(Edited by Ethan Dawe on 2/17, 12:00pm)




Post 30

Thursday, February 17, 2005 - 12:31pmSanction this postReply
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Barbara: “…morally, job opportunities should be open to all," (all other things being equal, as you said).”

Hi Barbara. Agreed, but the quote that heads this article states plainly that there is not just a right to work, but a right to translate that right into reality, and it’s the job of government to uphold rights for all, not just for some.

Ideally, everyone should treat everyone else fairly, but in the real world we know this is not the case. It wasn’t too long ago that your country was involved in a protracted and bitter dispute over these sorts of rights. The bigots in the case were not going to come to the party voluntarily; they had to be dragged by force.

 “Since you grant that no one should have the legal right to a certain job, then a person's rights are not being infringed by the bigot who doesn't want him -- and the bigot's rights are protected, too.

No person can have a right to a particular job, but they do have a right to be considered on their merits, and if they’re rejected despite those merits, their right to work is being infringed, as is their right to translate that right into reality.

The way I see it, we can either take the quote seriously as a statement of principle, or treat it lightly as a piece of rhetoric. Which would you prefer?

Brendan




Post 31

Thursday, February 17, 2005 - 12:37pmSanction this postReply
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Jon: “Not all confusion is crap, including Brendan’s. I can see his full name in his email address on his profile page.”

Thanks Jon…err, I think. Yes, that’s my name, plain for all to see.

Brendan




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Post 32

Thursday, February 17, 2005 - 12:40pmSanction this postReply
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...but they do have a right to be considered on their merits, ...

No Brendan, I should not *have* to consider you; not for your merit, your good looks, your ugly face, your 40 yard dash time, or even if you are a spick - I should not *have to* do a single fucking thing *you* want me to do except one: leave *you* the fuck alone by not applying any rules about what you *have* to do. The governments job is NOT to ensure that I am fair by anyones personal standard of morality, it is to ensure that you and I don't make each other *have* to do anything that we did not *willingly* consent to.


George

(Edited by George W. Cordero on 2/17, 12:42pm)




Post 33

Thursday, February 17, 2005 - 1:42pmSanction this postReply
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Brendan, listen to Ayn Rand making the case for the right to discriminate in hiring:
Just as man can’t exist without his body, so no rights can exist without the right to translate one’s rights into reality—to think, to work and to keep the results—which means: the right to property. ... Only a ghost can exist without material property; only a slave can work with no right to the product of his effort.




Post 34

Thursday, February 17, 2005 - 2:07pmSanction this postReply
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Brendan,

Instead of wiggling out of my analogy, try putting yourself into it, just for a minute. Don’t reject it, accept it for a moment and see what it tells you.

I advertise for a job opening. You apply. I need you very much because you are the only qualified applicant. I offer you the job and you accept. In passing, I mention that I’m off to the pond at the golf course in pursuit of my favorite pastime, which is making love to alligators. You withdraw from my employment.

Now, if people in search of work have the right, as you say they do, to be considered only on merit, never biases—then do employers also have that right? Can I call the cops and have you charged with bigotry in violation of my right to project my business ideas into reality? Remember: I NEED to fill this position and you are the ONLY qualified applicant. If this position is left open any longer my business will be in danger.

If you are tempted to answer that I the employer will be fine, I can up the wage offer and find someone else, it’s not your problem—then why can’t that be the answer for a discriminated-against employee? There are lots of employers who don’t discriminate, keep looking for other jobs, etc?

Jon



Post 35

Friday, February 18, 2005 - 12:11amSanction this postReply
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Jon: “I advertise for a job opening. You apply. I need you very much because you are the only qualified applicant. I offer you the job and you accept. In passing, I mention that I’m off to the pond at the golf course in pursuit of my favorite pastime, which is making love to alligators. You withdraw from my employment.

Now, if people in search of work have the right, as you say they do, to be considered only on merit, never biases—then do employers also have that right? Can I call the cops and have you charged with bigotry in violation of my right to project my business ideas into reality?”

No. If I’ve accepted the job, I haven’t any right to withdraw from an employment contract. I’ve accepted the conditions of work, and it’s just bad luck that I’ve got a pervert for a boss.

Of course, it would be quite a different matter if taking part in that sort of activity were a job requirement. For obvious reasons, I would be unqualified for the position and nobody’s rights are violated.

Brendan




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Post 36

Friday, February 18, 2005 - 7:03amSanction this postReply
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Pure crap.



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Post 37

Friday, February 18, 2005 - 8:41amSanction this postReply
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Crap, crap and more crap!



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Post 38

Friday, February 18, 2005 - 9:13amSanction this postReply
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My business means my choice. I can hire you because I like your qualifications *or* the way you look. The converse is true. Hell, I can even consult my magic eight ball.

There is a natural consequence for business decisions.

John



Post 39

Friday, February 18, 2005 - 1:53pmSanction this postReply
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Brendan,

Maybe this will clear up some confusion. Rand's quote, were it complete, would read "Just as man can’t exist without his body, so no rights can exist without the right to translate one’s rights into reality by one's own means—to think, to work and to keep the results —which means: the right to property." The "by one's own means"  does not need to be stated because it is absolutely implicit in all of Rand's writings, and Objectivist and libertarian thought in general.

I will state it here for the record: No one, anywhere, at any time, under any circumstances, in any context, ever, has the right to do anything using another person's means. You may only ever use another person's means by their permission, or by contract, which requires the completely voluntary consent of both parties. So no, no job applicant has the right to "translate his rights into reality" using the property of the employer without the employer's absolutely voluntary consent.




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