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Richard Randall on Environment


Strict liability should regulate pollution

Toxic waste disposal problems have been created by government policies that separate liability from property. Present legal principles, particularly the unjust and false concept of "public property," block privatization of the use of the environment and hence block resolution of controversies over resource use.

Pollution of other people's property is a violation of individual rights. Strict liability, not government agencies and arbitrary government standards, should regulate pollution. Claiming that one has abandoned a piece of property does not absolve one of the responsibility for actions one has set in motion.

Libertarians support the development of an objective legal system defining property rights to air and water. Rather than making taxpayers pay for toxic waste clean-ups, individual property owners, or in the case of corporations, the responsible managers and employees should be held strictly liable for material damage done by their property.

Source: Campaign website, www.lpcocandidates.org/randall/, "Issues" Oct 14, 2004

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