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An essay on the restoration of property
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If one takes survival as the end, then we may ask what are the meansnecessary to that end. On Locke’s account, these turn out to be life,liberty, health and property. Since the end is set by God, on Locke’sview we have a right to the means to that end. So we have rights tolife, liberty, health and property. These are natural rights, that isthey are rights that we have in a state of nature before theintroduction of civil government, and all people have these rightsequally.
An Essay on the Restoration of Property by Hilaire …
At the beginning of An Essay Concerning Human UnderstandingLocke says that since his purpose is “to enquire into theOriginal, Certainty and Extant of human knowledge, together with thegrounds and degrees of Belief, Opinion and Assent” he is goingto begin with ideas—the materials out of which knowledge isconstructed. His first task is to “enquire into the Original ofthese Ideas…and the ways whereby the Understanding comes to befurnished with them” (I. 1. 3. p. 44). The role of Book I of theEssay is to make the case that being innate is not a way inwhich the understanding is furnished with principles and ideas. Locketreats innateness as an empirical hypothesis and argues that there isno good evidence to support it.
In Book I Locke says little about who holds the doctrine of innateprinciples that he is attacking. For this reason he has sometimes beenaccused of attacking straw men. John Yolton has persuasively argued(Yolton, 1956) that the view that innate ideas and principles werenecessary for the stability of religion, morality and natural law waswidespread in England in the seventeenth century, and that inattacking both the naive and the dispositional account of innate ideasand innate principles, Locke is attacking positions which were widelyheld and continued to be held after the publication of theEssay. Thus, the charge that Locke’s account of innateprinciples is made of straw, is not a just criticism. But there arealso some important connections with particular philosophers andschools that are worth noting and some points about innate ideas andinquiry.
An essay on the restoration of property | Open Library
One might think that one could then acquire as much as one wished, butthis is not the case. Locke introduces at least two importantqualifications on how much property can be acquired. The firstqualification has to do with waste. Locke writes: “As much asanyone can make use of to any advantage of life before it spoils, somuch by his labor he may fix a property in; whatever is beyond this,is more than his share, and belongs to others” (II. 5. 31).Since originally, populations were small and resources great, livingwithin the bounds set by reason, there would be little quarrel orcontention over property, for a single man could make use of only avery small part of what was available.
At the end of the Second Treatise we learn about the nature ofillegitimate civil governments and the conditions under whichrebellion and regicide are legitimate and appropriate. As noted above,scholars now hold that the book was written during the Exclusioncrisis, and may have been written to justify a general insurrectionand the assassination of the king of England and his brother. Theargument for legitimate revolution follows from making the distinctionbetween legitimate and illegitimate civil government. A legitimatecivil government seeks to preserve the life, health, liberty andproperty of its subjects, insofar as this is compatible with thepublic good. Because it does this it deserves obedience. Anillegitimate civil government seeks to systematically violate thenatural rights of its subjects. It seeks to make them illegitimateslaves. Because an illegitimate civil government does this, it putsitself in a state of nature and a state of war with its subjects. Themagistrate or king of such a state violates the law of nature and somakes himself into a dangerous beast of prey who operates on theprinciple that might makes right, or that the strongest carries it. Insuch circumstances, rebellion is legitimate as is the killing of sucha dangerous beast of prey. Thus Locke justifies rebellion and regicideunder certain circumstances. Presumably this justification was goingto be offered for the killing of the King of England and his brotherhad the Rye House Plot succeeded. Even if this was not Locke’sintention, it still would have served that purpose well.
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The Restoration of Property - The Distributist Review
Locke’s arguments for religious toleration connect nicely to hisaccount of civil government. Locke defines life, liberty, health andproperty as our civil interests. These are the proper concern of amagistrate or civil government. The magistrate can use force andviolence where this is necessary to preserve civil interests againstattack. This is the central function of the state. One’s religiousconcerns with salvation, however, are not within the domain of civilinterests, and so lie outside of the legitimate concern of themagistrate or the civil government. In effect, Locke adds anadditional right to the natural rights of life, liberty, health andproperty—the right of freedom to choose one’s own road tosalvation. (See the section on in the entry on Locke’s Political Philosophy.)
An Essay On The Restoration Of Property By Hilaire …
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In England itself, religious conflict dominated the 17th century,contributing in important respects to the coming of the English civilwar, and the abolishing of the Anglican Church during theProtectorate. After the Restoration of Charles II, Anglicans inparliament passed laws which repressed both Catholics and Protestantsects such as Presbyterians, Baptists, Quakers and Unitarians who didnot agree with the doctrines or practices of the state Church. Ofthese various dissenting sects, some were closer to the Anglicans,others more remote. One reason among others why King Charles may havefound Shaftesbury useful was that they were both concerned aboutreligious toleration. They parted when it became clear that the Kingwas mainly interested in toleration for Catholics, and Shaftesbury forProtestant dissenters.
An Essay on the Restoration of Property by Hilaire Belloc
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