by Locker Room contributor
Maybe the sticking point in my reading of it is whether the right in question is absolute or not. If the government has authority (right) to tax, it must have the overruling right with respect to the governed’s right to hold property. That right is itself limited by the consent of the governed, etc, etc, etc. I don’t see that either has the absolute right, but both exist like binary suns. Is this a great country or what?
Part of it too is that the semantic load of “violation” is pretty high, implying something which ought never to happen. To say that someone’s property rights have been “violated” by taxation seems like equating sales tax with rape. Maybe a rights “limitation”, or even “interference” with rights, conveys the same issue without the rhetorical punch. I think to adopt the terminology of violation is to cede the point to the anarchist side.
As far as threshhold, ah, there’s the rub. Of course, without an objective standard of some sort, any boundary becomes arbitrary in the ultimate sense (who is the arbiter?). The Founders placed a certain weight on the guidance found in the Bible, something external to our political processes and presumed authoritative, but that becomes inaccessible as we move away from it as an explicitly recognized standard for national civic morality.
(And after all, when you talk about rights and violations, you are talking about morality.)