Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Nine Laws Too Many

George Carlin once reduced the Ten Commandments to two key concepts:

1) Thou shalt always be honorable and faithful to the provider of thy nookie.

2) Thou shalt try real hard not to kill anyone, unless, of course, they pray to a different invisible man to the one you pray to.

Jesus got it down to one, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”

When you purchase a board game from Wal-Mart, you expect the rules to be comprehensible and fair.

Imagine playing a game where you always lose. Oh, wait. Never mind.

So, how are you today? Feeling pleasant? Slightly uncomfortable, perhaps?

It is absolutely incomprehensible how many laws people are required to follow. What is the point of so many laws? Once, ten was more than enough. Why do we now need millions?

How many ways can We The People be outraged? Laws react to outrageous conduct. Regulations aren't laws – if you want to count regulations as laws I suppose we face billions. Nearly everybody regulates something. Almost all regulation/law is blatantly unconstitutional – but who cares? They are enforced.

So many laws lead to so many interpretations that anything can be legal if you're connected. You know who's connected because they have investments. Investors may not run this place but they have a working relationship with those who do. The boys at the top spread a piece of the action around.

Instead of complicating our societal rules, we should be simplifying them. We shouldn't have to ask some lawyer for legal advice every time we want to spit downwind. We should be able to defend ourselves in a court of law. There can't be more than a handful of base crimes.

Ten laws would be too many for a just society. Jesus' one rule can be translated as “Don't cheat.” Almost every law that exists came into being because someone cheated. We should just determine whether something is a cheat and if so penalize the cheater – penalty to vary with severity.

Current society only accepts the law, “Get it in writing.” Contract law. How the contract was coerced is hardly consequential. Naturally, money power dominates all contracts. In truth, most current contracts would be invalid in a society that values fairness. Fairness is what is missing from our lives.

Agreements can be forced, but fairness will always be objective (or it's not fair.)