As David Cameron may have learned when he read PPE at Oxford, property rights are a cornerstone of our liberty, our security, our civilisation. Wiser political thinkers than Dave have long understood this.
Here’s the Virginia Bill of Rights, precursor to the US Declaration of Independence:
That all men are by nature equally free and independent, and have certain inherent rights, of which, when they enter into a state of society, they cannot, by any compact, deprive or divest their posterity; namely, the enjoyment of life and liberty, with the means of acquiring and possessing property, and pursuing and obtaining happiness and safety.
Here’s Samuel Adams:
The Natural Rights of the colonists are these: first, a right to life; second, to liberty; third to property; together with the right to support and defend them in the best manner they can.
And here, most trenchantly, is the philosopher who inspired them, John Locke:
Whenever the legislators endeavour to take away and destroy the property of the people, or to reduce them to slavery under arbitrary power, they put themselves into a state of war with the people, who are thereupon absolved from any further obedience,…
Time for a revolution, then, for the theft of our property rights is exactly what is happening to us now under our notionally “Conservative” prime minister and his increasingly desperate and damaging attempts to position his collapsing administration as the “greenest ever.” I’m thinking especially of the ongoing renewables scam.
The wind farm industry is surely the worst offender. Some vexatious twerp complained the other day about my claim that wind farms reduce property values by between 25 per cent and 50 per cent. Actually, if anything, I’m understating the problem here. I know of cases where properties have been rendered unsaleable by wind farms. But whatever the exact figures, I think those of us not in the pay of Big Wind or trotting out propaganda for the preposterous and devious Renewable UK would all agree that the very last thing we’d want on our doorstep would be a wind farm and that we certainly would never dream of buying a property near one. QED.
Since not a single one of the wind farms blighting Britain would have been built without state incentives (in the form of Renewable Obligations Certificates, Feed In Tariffs, and legislation which makes it very hard for communities to prevent wind farms being built in the area) we can reasonably say therefore that wind farms represent a wanton assault by the state on property rights. We expect such confiscatory measures “for the common good” from socialist regimes. But from a Conservative-dominated Coalition it’s a disgrace.
But it’s not just the wind farm industry which is complicitous in this scam. There’s a fascinating cover story in this week’s Spectator about the UK hydro power industry which turns out to be very nearly as damaging, unpleasant, slimy and untrustworthy as its nasty elder brother Big Wind.