Tim Worstall asks:
And what the fuck’s wrong with voluntary collective action rather than State enforced collective action?
Answer: charity presupposes a condition in which some people have stuff which they can do without, and some people lack stuff that they really need. This inequality (which, like all inequalities, is morally objectionable on the face of it) is only sustained by the actions of the capitalist state in enforcing property rights through its monopoly on the legitimate use of force. In a more just world, there would be no need for charity because you would not have a situation in which some people have, whilst others need.
That’s interesting. All inequality is immoral? That I have an IQ above my shoe size while Polly T might well not is immoral?
Aside from this obvious point, I honestly don’t see any moral difference between a spontaneous, voluntary urge to do good on the part of certain individuals, and a reflective, truly collective urge to do good as manifest in a legal requirement to provide support to those in need through the existing system of taxation and welfare.
And that’s even more interesting, isn’t it? There’s no moral difference between the actions of an individual unforced and the forced actions of the same individual? Forced by the monopoly on violence of the State?
And do note that we actually have good evidence that the taxation and welfare system is not in fact voluntary nor freely entered into. For there’s that what, £120 billion, tax gap we keep being told about. Pure and clear evidence that some to many people do not in fact agree with that State system. For by their actions they, at risk to their liberty, deliberately avoid it.