The state should require parents to be licensed. That is, there is no moral right to raise a child, and we would do well to think of it as a privilege that the state grants and can refrain from granting to certain individuals. If you don’t like that way of putting it, I am comfortable with a weaker claim: whatever moral right to raise a child there might be is defeated when the parent-to-be is significantly likely to cause the child substantial and avoidable harm, or, of course, if the parent does cause the child such harm. Those that should be refused a license to parent a child are those who are likely, in parenting, to harm the child. Those that should have a parenting license revoked are those who do harm the child.A government-approved licence for being allowed to raise kids? What kind of statist nutter thought that one up? Well, actually, it's someone claiming to be some kind of libertarian!
Now, you can decide for yourselves if this is a wind-up or not - though the author insists in the comments that it isn't - but regardless of that, just imagine the disastrous implications of such an idea.
Quite apart from standing in direct opposition to nature and the principles of evolution, anyone who could possibly suggest that any state would be capable enough to be trusted with such crucial decisions is arguably insane.
How do we know this? Quite simply because we already have a long-running control group to test their hypothesis.
Just 60 newborns were adopted in Britain last year in a new low – at a time when the number of children now in care is at its highest since 1987.It's incredible that some still can't recognise a perpetually-repeated theme here. That once government are delegated ultimate authority in any area - contrary to naturally occurring markets, the human condition, or plain nigh extinct common sense - they always, but always, fuck it up.
The drop in numbers is down to delays in putting children with families willing to adopt, campaigners say – the average wait now drags on for two years and seven months.
Official figures released on Wednesday show that 60 newborns were adopted in the 12 months to March this year, down from 70 in 2010, 150 in 2007 – and 4,000 in 1976.
Some 2,450 children were placed for adoption, down by two per cent on the 2010 figures and ten per cent since 2007. Meanwhile, the number of children in care rose by two per cent to 65,520 – its highest level since 1987.
And one in three leaving care when old enough are not in education, employment or training, the Department for Education admitted.
What's more, with every tweak as illustrated by the adoption example, they just make matters worse. In fact, here's the customary state approach to every issue they decide to take control of, expressed via the medium of one of their intellectual equals.
The concept of mission creep dictates that, in no short space of time, the worthy goal of harm prevention will morph into yet another tool of micro-management, dogmatic intervention, and self-preservatory job creation, while simultaneously resulting in a huge increase in deeply destructive human misery.
No, no. This is a crashingly stupid idea, and one which anyone even remotely 'libertarian' should be appalled by.
But that's the really scary part, y'see? If someone who claims to be suspicious of the state can suggest this, you can bet the contents of your granny's will that others with an overwhelming ideological trust in the competence of the state - despite all evidence to the contrary - wouldn't bat an eyelid in proposing state licensing of children as a workable policy.
Well. If risk can't be reduced to zero, it's the 'next logical step', isn't it?