The right to work in this blog is not the phrase as used for union issues. It’s the natural right. For us human beings, work means “Such effort or activity by which one makes a living; employment.” Your right to work means that at your voluntary option you may make employment exchanges or bargains with other people with similar liberty; and at the same time people external to the bargaining parties, i.e., other than you and the people you are exchanging with, may not coerce either of you to prevent, change or modify the work arrangement.
Right to work doesn’t mean that anyone owes you any stuff like this: “…technical and vocational guidance and training programmes, policies and techniques to achieve steady economic, social and cultural development and full and productive employment under conditions safeguarding fundamental political and economic freedoms to the individual.” Nor do you owe anyone an affirmative action or non-discrimination aspect of your bargain.
Obviously, labor laws in the U.S. prevent you from exercising your right to work fully and freely. “The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) administers and enforces more than 180 federal laws. These mandates and the regulations that implement them cover many workplace activities for about 150 million workers and 10 million workplaces.” The Declaration Of Ind... Best Price: $5.98 Buy New $6.89 (as of 03:35 EDT - Details)
We do not live in a free country.
The lockdowns are even more totalitarian than the labor laws and regulations on the books. They prevent you from working even if you are obeying all the existing labor laws!
Did your legislatures pass lockdown laws? No. One available list shows that state governors in the U.S. mainly did this. Health authorities, counties and cities seem also to have instigated lockdowns.
In the name of a health measure, state governors infringed the natural right to work. It’s a natural right because that’s how you sustain yourself and live. That’s how you pursue happiness. If you are denied the means to “Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness”, you cannot have or secure those natural rights. The right to work follows as a natural right because it’s necessary to achieve the major ends of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness; and the making of voluntary work arrangements involves only the presumed justly-held property of the participants making the exchange.
By ordering lockdowns, these governors betrayed the Declaration of Independence “…That to secure these Rights, Governments are instituted…” They betrayed us. They betrayed their states. They betrayed their country. They may have done so in panic or mistakenly or to look good or to save lives or for any number of reasons, but there is no doubt. Their lockdowns orders were and are betrayals.
The governors betrayed our principles. There is no point in having principles, such as individual rights to work, to life, to liberty and to the pursuit of happiness, if they are violated hastily and unlawfully and then replaced by their very opposites. It’s worthy of the term “betrayal”
Supposing that our governments are actually designed to possess “…just Powers from the Consent of the Governed…” as the Declaration says, can lockdowns that abrogate natural rights possibly be exercises of “just Powers”? How can government actions that do the very opposite of securing rights, which is the main purpose and end of our governments, be seen as anything other than exercises of UNJUST powers? Seiko Men’s SGG7... Buy New $137.48 (as of 03:35 EDT - Details)
To implement one’s right to work generally involves travel on public roads. Does the government’s presence in the system of roads render right to work an empty idea, stymied because of a property rights barrier? Not one whit. Highway departments maintain roads, governments get them built, but the funding comes from taxes at all levels. Taxpayers own the roads, not your City Manager or County Supervisor. They are your agents. The right to work includes rights to travel on the roads, over bridges, through tunnels, etc. Having paid for them, they are your property, jointly owned to be sure, but meant to be available so that you exercise your rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. They too are essential parts of the larger right to work. They are necessary means, and the use of them cannot coercively be prevented by governments without violating your right to work.
If courts understand and defend the police power as an essential if unstated part of government constitutions, then why should they not also understand and defend the right to work as an essential right of We the People? Why should we all not recognize it and strongly resist its abrogation?
These lockdown orders were extreme. It’s madness to think that putting millions out of work can stop an epidemic, especially one that’s already well underway. Its madness and ignorance to think this can be done without causing a great many more deaths by other follow-on effects of the lockdowns.
In sum, all people, including Americans, have a right to work, a natural right. It follows from the basic rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. And following from the right to work are rights of travel over means paid for by taxpayers, who largely work and also use those means for other ends.
For whatever motivations, governors issued lockdown orders denying the exercise of the right to work, without which life cannot long be sustained. This is reason enough alone to condemn the lockdown measures strongly.