The Self-Ownership Principle

Topics: Property, Garden of Eden, Utopia Pages: 2 (497 words) Published: July 14, 2013
The Self-Ownership Principle

Self-ownership is a belief that almost all Australians or any human accepts. Self-ownership is a belief that any human being of any religion, race, gender orientation or nationality is the ultimate arbiter of the decisions that affects themselves and any coercive action that prevents this decision making is inherently immoral and unacceptable. The acceptance of respect for self-ownership is something that is natural and unquestionable for all humans and is demonstrated below.

Imagine that every human being is living in the Garden of Eden found in Genesis. Everyone is living in a world without scarcity and this means that if one person uses a resource, no other person is deprived of its use, i.e. unlimited apples on a tree. In this environment, there is no need for an economic system or property agreement as there is no need for appropriations of land by physical force. However, there is a hidden flaw in this supposed utopian Garden of Eden; there remains a scarcity of human bodies whilst human desires are unlimited and these desires might involve the use of other’s bodies. Instinctively, people will state that there IS a need for a system of property in the Garden of Eden to truly provide a peaceful world; a system respecting the ownership of one’s body.

Remarkably simple as the premise of self-ownership is, the implications of the logical conclusions of self-ownership have far-reaching societal consequences. All natural resources are scarce, and thus an system of property needs to be instituted to prevent the Earth from being affected by issues that arise from the Tragedy of the Commons. The process of appropriating land for ownership by people is known as Homesteading. Homesteading is a method of appropriating property ownership that is also the only system completely compatible with self-ownership because it is an independent exchange between nature and one’s own labour. Using coercion to prevent people from creating...
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