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Yet another weird SF fan
 

Sunday, August 07, 2005

Are Lawsuits Necessary?

April Thompson claimed she was fired because she refused to get an abortion. Aldahlia seems to think this is some kind of contradiction between Free-market conservatives and Pro-Life conservatives. Of course, anybody who actually bothered paying attention to Free-Market conservatives would be aware that we think the market will eventually abolish pointless discrimination.

On the other hand, this may be an attempt at bypassing skepticism. Not every pro-lifer is credulous. We'll have to find out how much actual evidence there is.

On the gripping hand, if this can be proved, potential customers may start wondering what other sleazy things the firm may be up to.

3 Comments:

Blogger Francis W. Porretto said...

Markets tend to punish firms that act this way, as people's normal sense of decency operates. The hazard is that the company might have been wrongly accused.

But let's assume for a moment that the story is true as reported and that the marketplace will not react negatively against this bit of callousness. Is there any conceivable justification for allowing the State to seize the power to intervene in a labor contract, just to redress this one indecency? Or is this a case where one should grit one's teeth and remind oneself that "hard cases make bad law?"

I opt for the latter.

3:50 PM  
Blogger David said...

Would it violate market principles to consider this a special case of attempted manslaughter or conspiracy to commit wrongful death or whatever (that the State presently fails to recognize as such), and thus place it under that one penumbra, or something? That line you cross when you claim a right to violate the rights of another?

Can't believe I've lived to see a Motie idiom pass into casual English usage.

7:59 PM  
Blogger Milhouse said...

This is one of those faux paradoxes that only work because the reader is bamboozled into conflating two separate hypotheticals into one.

1. In the ideal world of anti-abortion libertarians, abortion would be illegal (as aggression against the baby), and therefore if such a case were to happen the employer's demand would be conspiracy to commit murder. Allowing them to fire her for refusing to commit a crime would be contrary to public policy.

2. In a libertarian world in which abortion was legal, an employer would indeed be free to make such a demand, unless there were an employment contract that provided otherwise.

3. But we don't live in any sort of libertarian world. In this world abortion is legal, but employment suits such as this one are also legal. So, if the plaintiff can prove her allegations, pro-life libertarians are free in good conscience to take either side.

2:13 AM  

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