Saturday, November 10, 2018

The UN's Universal Declaration of Human "Rights"

Some people, particularly in other parts of the world, praise the UN's Universal Declaration of Human Rights and seem to think it's really something special. I've never paid any attention to it myself, even though I've heard it mentioned for years. I had never read it to see exactly what it actually said, but curiosity finally got to me.

So, I guess it's time to put my nose to the slime-stone and see what's in there.

Oh, look! It starts with a preamble. All important documents should have a preamble. Let's see what's in it. I notice the English used is a little awkward here and there. I'll pretend I don't notice.

Hmmm. The preamble displays some seriously flawed misconceptions, such as the delusional belief in "the rule of law", which you probably realize is a myth always and forever, everywhere. It's simply not a "thing".

It also pretends "nations" can act and develop "friendly relations" with each other, and that this is somehow tied to human rights. Well, governments fighting each other can be seriously bad for the people caught in the middle, but the solution for that is the dissolution of the offenders.

The declaration is determined to promote "social progress", yet it promotes government supremacy which is the opposite. This is dangerously regressive thinking.

It also, as is so common, mistakes freedom for liberty. It's a convenient conflation.

The pompous preamble ends by pretending territories can be under the jurisdiction of "Member States".

So, that was kind of a mess. Let's see what the rest of the thing says.

(I'm not going to copy the whole declaration, just bits and pieces. If you want to follow along as I work my way through it, here's the complete text.)

Article 1.
(What do the writers of this document consider "a spirit of brotherhood"? If it is mutual respect for each other's rights, then I'm fine with that. But so often, proglodytic documents seem to feel "brotherhood" enslaves one to another. I suppose we shall see where this leads below.)

Article 2.
"Everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms (ahem... liberty) set forth in this Declaration...
Furthermore, no distinction shall be made on the basis of the political, jurisdictional or international status of the country or territory to which a person belongs...
(So, humans as property of a State) 
"...whether it be independent, trust, non-self-governing or under any other limitation of sovereignty
(States aren't sovereign; people are-- I sense government supremacism on display here.)

Article 3.
"Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person.
(Yes. And this means they also have the right to defend these rights with the proper tools: weapons, equal to the weapons of any potential violators [particularly the relevant government] as personal property. Otherwise this right is being treated as a privilege.)

Article 4.
"No one shall be held in slavery or servitude; slavery and the slave trade shall be prohibited in all their forms.
(That's nice, but... "prohibited"? By who? Enforced how? Does this include imprisonment by governments?)

Article 5.
"No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.
(Unless government and/or a majority of the population approve and call it "necessary".)

Article 6.
"Everyone has the right to recognition everywhere as a person before the law.
(Recognition as a person is meaningless when the law is counterfeit and when it is administered and enforced by a State.)

Article 7.
(Pretty much a repeat of Article 6)

Article 8.
(In which they promote the notion of "competent" government "tribunals", and assert that rights are "granted" by constitutions or laws. No thanks. If it's "national" I want no part in it. Give me competent independent arbitration which is not connected in any way to any State. And my rights don't hinge on the opinions or documents of bullies.)

Article 9.
"No one shall be subjected to arbitrary arrest, detention or exile." 
(Dare they define "arbitrary" in some way which doesn't excuse enforcement of counterfeit "laws"? Nah.)

Article 10.
(Again with the tribunal. Why always a tribunal? If one arbitrator is independent and impartial, one is enough. If the tribunal members are statist government supremacists, then the tribunal is a bad joke and you're doomed.)

Article 11.
"(1) Everyone charged with a penal offence has the right to be presumed innocent until proved guilty according to law in a public trial at which he has had all the guarantees necessary for his defence.
(Will the legitimacy of the "law" also be judged? If not, no thanks.)

(Again, just because something is a "penal offense" doesn't mean it's wrong.)

Article 12.
("Arbitrary" again. The "law", and those who wield it, is the main culprit. Who will hold it accountable when it is the one interfering and attacking?)

Article 13.
"(1) Everyone has the right to freedom of movement and residence within the borders of each state." (Why only within the borders? And where do private property rights come in?)

"(2) Everyone has the right to leave any country, including his own, and to return to his country.
(How about the right to have no country?)

Article 14.
(I don't see any big problems with this one, other than the UN's haughty self-promotion. Maybe you can find something.)

Article 15.
"(1) Everyone has the right to a nationality.
(But is everyone obligated to have a nationality?)

"(2) No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his nationality nor denied the right to change his nationality.
(I'm now Liberlandian, except on those days I'm devoid of nationality.)

Article 16.
"(1)...the right to marry and to found a family..." 
(Yeah. And...? Government has no right or "authority" to meddle.)

"(2)...the free and full consent of the intending spouses."
(Common sense.)

(A bit of editorializing by the authors. State "protection" is often a death sentence. How about keeping the State out of it.)

Article 17.
(Agreed. Now if only governments would recognize that they and their decisions are all arbitrary.)

Article 18.
"Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion..." 
(No one has the right to use government or its "laws" to impose his religious beliefs on others, whether it's called Sharia or "Blue Laws" or prohibition or...?)

Article 19.
"Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.
(Google doesn't think so. That's why they help the US government spy on everyone in the world, and why they are helping the Chinese government censor search results to keep people ignorant and complacent. But the right of freedom of expression doesn't mean anyone is obligated to let you stand on their soapbox or to listen to you ramble on.)

Article 20.
"(1) Everyone has the right to freedom of peaceful assembly and association."
(Why only "peaceful"? You have the right to assemble and associate violently to meet an aggressive threat.)

"(2) No one may be compelled to belong to an association.
(Including a "country"? Can I be compelled to pay "dues"?)

Article 21.
"(1) Everyone has the right to take part in the government of his country, directly or through freely chosen representatives.
(No one has the right to use politics to govern others.)

"(2) Everyone has the right of equal access to public service in his country."
("public service"? Are they talking about access to "public services" like being thoroughly policed, etc., or about the equal "right" to have access to run for political office and "serve"? Either way, it sounds like a scam. I'll pass.)

"(3) The will of the people shall be the basis of the authority of government; this will shall be expressed in periodic and genuine elections which shall be by universal and equal suffrage and shall be held by secret vote or by equivalent free voting procedures.
("Authority" is the most dangerous superstition. According to this document, mob rule is beautiful.)

Article 22.
(This article is just trying to justify entitlements and a socialist "safety net". States have no resources. Anything they possess to redistribute is stolen.)

Article 23.
"(1) Everyone has the right to work, to free choice of employment, to just and favourable conditions of work and to protection against unemployment.
(So, no "freedom of association" then? In that case I want to be employed in some job where I do what I already do, but I make several thousand dollars a week (or even per month). Hey, it's my right to choose this employment and these just and favorable conditions!)

"(2) Everyone, without any discrimination, has the right to equal pay for equal work."
(Sure, if that's the agreement you make with the person you work for. Just because I spend X hours per day researching and writing doesn't mean I'm entitled to be paid the same amount that J.K. Rowling is paid for the same amount of work.)

"(3) Everyone who works has the right to just and favourable remuneration ensuring for himself and his family an existence worthy of human dignity, and supplemented, if necessary, by other means of social protection.
(Stolen from other people against their will.)

"(4) Everyone has the right to form and to join trade unions for the protection of his interests."
(And every employer has a right to employ members of that trade union, or not, as he sees fit.)

Article 24.
(A denial of "freedom of association" again. Who limits the working hours? Who pays for the holidays?)

Article 25.
("Entitlements", Paid for by theft.)

(Extra "entitlements" just for being a mother or child.)

Article 26.
"(1) Everyone has the right to education..." 
"Education shall be free, at least in the elementary and fundamental stages..." 
("Free"? Wait, are you speaking of education or schooling?). 
"Elementary education shall be compulsory." 
(Slavery. So not education, but schooling after all. Sad.) 
"Technical and professional education shall be made generally available and higher education shall be equally accessible to all on the basis of merit." 
(Merit is good... And if you can't pay? People shall be enslaved for your benefit?)

"(2) Education ... shall further the activities of the United Nations for the maintenance of peace.
(So, indoctrination, not education.)

"(3) Parents have a prior right to choose the kind of education that shall be given to their children." 
(Wait... but you said it would be compulsory. Pick one. And no one can be "given" an education. They can be given the opportunity to educate themselves.)

Article 27.
"(1) Everyone has the right freely to participate in the cultural life of the community, to enjoy the arts and to share in scientific advancement and its benefits.
(So if I want to go to the movie, a concert, or Billy Bob's Backyard Beer Bash and Karaoke Party, I can just walk right in and quote the above because I have the right to "participate in the cultural life of the community" and "enjoy the arts"? If I want the newest iPhone or to get an MRI just for the fun of it, it's my right, because I have the right to "share in scientific advancement and its benefits"?)

"(2) Everyone has the right to the protection of the moral and material interests resulting from any scientific, literary or artistic production of which he is the author.
(I guess that settles it-- Intellectual Property (IP) is real!)

Article 28.
"Everyone is entitled to a social and international order in which the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration can be fully realized.
(What if I recognize that some of the "rights" you've detailed aren't rights and I am ethically opposed to them? What if I know of rights you've ignored or violated with this document? Am I entitled to a social and international order based instead upon actual rights and liberty, under the Covenant of Unanimous Consent?)

Article 29.
"(1) Everyone has duties to the community in which alone the free and full development of his personality is possible." 
(Your only duty to the community is to respect the rights of every individual in it.)

"(2) In the exercise of his rights and freedoms, everyone shall be subject only to such limitations as are determined by law solely for the purpose of securing due recognition and respect for the rights and freedoms of others and of meeting the just requirements of morality, public order and the general welfare in a democratic society." 
(This is a particularly horrible one. "Law" is either harmful or useless. Morality is more accurately known as situational ethics, and can be downright evil, depending on the prevailing culture. "Public order" means "Stop making a scene and let the nice policeman murder you in the streets or in your home at 3 a.m.", and general welfare-- as promoted by statists-- is a lie used to justify anything government wants to do. If it's not to the individual's welfare, it isn't to the "general" welfare. And democracy is mob rule; NOT something to promote.)

"(3) These rights and freedoms may in no case be exercised contrary to the purposes and principles of the United Nations.
(There goes the myth of the Rule of Law right out the window. It sounded nice until it got in the way of the "authority" of this governmental body.)

Article 30.
"Nothing in this Declaration may be interpreted as implying for any State, group or person any right to engage in any activity or to perform any act aimed at the destruction of any of the rights and freedoms set forth herein.
(What about the rights you conveniently ignored? Or the imaginary "rights" you made up?)

And that's the end of the thing.

So, it's a mixed bag. Not as bad as I had supposed, but falling far short of actually recognizing, much less helping individuals protect, their natural human rights in accordance with living in liberty.

It's much too excited about "democracy", and can't seem to shake the superstitious belief that government is somehow legitimate and has "rights" over what to do with the individual people laboring under the weight of supporting this elitist millstone. It recognizes some natural human rights while promoting some unnatural human "rights".

There are much better rights-promoting documents, but no document can protect rights. That's up to you and me, as individuals. And States, as promoted by this document, are the natural enemy of rights and liberty.


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