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Clear the Definition of Human Rights                                    27 Nov. 1998

By Pavel Kollar

What is considered as human rights today, right to freedom of thought, expression of opinion and religion, etc. are all elements of individual's personality and imagine individual rights. But in the course of their practical application they took the direction to collective rights and were taken up in the first place by those individuals or groups which tried to constrain the unlimited rights of autocratic regimes and so elevate themselves as competitors for power but with less "privileged" rights over other individuals and more rights to "self-exploitation" for benefit of broad public. So, these rights became the base of democracy and I think that those who made the first draft of these rights an half a century ago had just this intention, to lay down some basic legal framework for functioning of democracy and possible contemplated that if democracy becomes functioning, the specific individual or collective goals(a holiday with pay, vaccination, remuneration, work, babies, ...) will be a matter of course, automatically fulfilled. And I think they were good in their predictions because in most democracies(in comparison to undemocracies) the individuals were able to accomplish mostly of their personal or collective goals.

In some countries these rights are monopolized by one group under the explanation that the authority knows better what individuals need and what are their capabilities than the individuals themselves, so individuals do not need these rights because authority will feed them, authority will clothe them, etc. they only need to work laboriously and participate on elections and so to express their thankfulness and loyalty to authority. So, this second is the price for granted individual rights from authority(right to be a consumer and to work). Who is not ready to pay it but is trying to use the same rights that are reserved for authority will end as those in Gulags or similar. But this type of social organization is giving argument for following question: if individuals' thinking and communication is laid down genetically then in the case of their removal by some kind social surgery can these individuals be considered as human individuals.

These two models of social organization became the object of controversy in this century and this controversy, in spite of some gains for the first model seems not to end. Some leaders today, under the title 'democracy' are selling authoritarianism. They will allow a weak opposition, they will allow several newspapers that will write opposite of the mainstream, they will tolerate demonstrations from time to time, also some fragile security but they will continue to govern as before. How long? So long until they can say "see, without authority it will not go, you democrats have also the same authorities only a slightly different value system". On the other hand, the democratic model seems to reproduce some undesired side-effects that are used by the authoritarians to prove the rightness of their standpoints. It looks like there is no way out from this vicious circle of choice between these two possibilities. I disagree with this.

Human is concrete individual with needs(under needs I understand all, emotions also) and capabilities to satisfy these needs. Right is a claim that these needs and capabilities(in now day specialized and dependant on each other in the society) should be recognized by others and an obligation to recognize the same of others. It is clear that these needs and potentialities should be in some balance already on individual level and also the rights and obligations. Translated into economic terms, needs and capabilities or rights and obligations mean demand and supply. The present problem of democracies(and even more of the undemocracies) is the raising number of individuals in disequilibrium, caused by different monopolists that are in position to discriminate the supply side of many individuals. The existence of such disequilibriums is the reason for existence of authorities of different types, with explanation that their role is to keep these imbalances in limits, but frequently they are becoming the cause of even greater imbalances, when the policy is wrong. The consequences for individuals are that their relations are not more direct, but intermediated by authorities and different market agents, possibly much more than necessary.

These demand and supply patterns of great number of individuals, together with different types of authorities can rise to different patterns of social organizations and markets. With the end of communist era in Eastern Europe, there came to reduction of pure monopolistic models and these are to be found only in Cuba and in some countries in Asia(The so-called Yugoslav model from about 20-30 years ago was in reality pure monopoly, the self-government in it was only eyewipping). All present democracies are mixed models, containing monopolistic and competitive(or strong social integration as compared to loose social integration or nonfree individuals in relations to more free individuals) features in different degrees and different fields(economic, legal). What does not exist today is the model of pure or perfect competition. Instead of discussing what is this model I would try to describe the steps towards this type of social organization.

At first it would be preferable to remove the difference between human rights and the so-called constitutional rights(or their short-run form, political goals), that is the state. Constitutional rights are rights of authorities. If there are mentioned some individual rights in the constitution then these are rights given by authority to individuals and usually(in their practical interpretation) do not coincide with rights from the standpoint of individuals. The difference will cease if human rights will be emerged to constitutional rights. This will be new quality in definition of state. Consequently the traditional state(represented by institutions such as military, police and church) will be replaced with new state(based on educational, humanitarian, economic and other institutions). This will be a transition from more stabilization to more anticipation in governing. The traditional state-functions(value setting, security, etc.) will be decentralized to individuals. There is no such perfect government that can know better what are the needs and the capabilities of concrete individual.

But, in doing what was said above, there is to be removed also one cliche, that is, to think that deregulation means no regulation. Deregulation without new regulation is anarchy, not freedom. With the growth of one system to complexity, more integrating efforts are necessary, not less, as it looks at the first strike, to keep the system even lose integrated. What will change will be the integrating values and integrating methods(instead fear and power, more insight and knowledge). This regulation will be very general but clear to everyone. What the new state should guarantee to individuals as their right is their individuality practised through two basic roles or institutions: an individual business firm and individual household(privacy). This should be the 'ID card' of every individual. These institutions will be acquired by birth and given up by cease, that means will be valid and active whole life long.

All other will be regulated by individuals. The individual firm will be able to produce different 'products and services' and sell them to more customers according flexible regulation dependant on a concrete situation. For special products there will be created 'consortiums' of these individual firms based on contracts(analogues of present business firms) but their internal organization will be regulated by market relations, as different from present loyalty relations based on fear(reward and coerce). In such a system it will be possible to smooth the extreme unevennesses caused by unemployment of one and over employment of other, without causing uniformity and manmade egalitarianism. Bankruptcies of firms could exist but will be dumped by multilaterality(or universality) of production offered by one firm(instead of a present narrow speciality), by individual reserves and by anticipative education system. Security will be based on communication. The present police files will be resolved into individual security files. The help for security will be in education and in emergency services for special cases(based on management by exception). The present health service institutions will gain on importance as parts of the security system.

Instead of present political elections there will be frequent readjustments of demand and supply patterns of individuals based on information about the state of larger systems and frequent regrouping(resolution of one society and creation of new societies) according the changes of individuals' value systems. All this will happen through individual and collective accounts, less physically. Elections will be accomplished in monetary units and money will express the demand and supply patterns of individuals and their state of wealth on accounts(similar as in present accounting, with two sides, credit and debit).

The pillar institutions of the new state will be the education institutions. Considering the knowledge will change rapidly, education will be continually and will be part of privacy institution of individual. The most appropriate phrase will be 'adequate knowledge at right time and space'. And all this will require an adequate communication. It is clear that the education programs will not resemble too much to present education programs. The knowledge will have to be restructuralized, with a point on individual life. The quality of this 'state' will depend on the quality of software(and possible the future politicians will be software producers, but this software will be a personal life management package).

I wrote this because I think it is time to (future)politicians to start to think in this lines, not to repeat old models under the new titles. Today in Europe the fashion is the so-called Third Way of the Left. I think they changed only the advertising tactic. The content of their programs did not change too much. What I tried to describe here I call liberalism(or capitalism of liberal era).

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                                       ©Copyright 1998 Pavel Kollar