Theft de Minimis

I think the law around property rights should include provisions for “de minimis” theft. Which is what you call it when what you steal is such a tiny little bit it’s not worth prosecuting as a crime. And when I say “tiny little bit,” I mean as a percentage of what someone has.

What I’m trying to say is that it should be legal for common folk to steal from billionaires aka money-hoarders.

The fact that my legal name is attached to this blog should tell you I have no foreseeable plans to dip into any money-hoarders’ liquid assets. I just think that if the amount you steal from someone is such a small portion of what they have that they don’t even notice it’s gone, that shouldn’t be a crime.

Now, if you hold someone up at gunpoint and steal a hundred dollars, you should be prosecuted from the holding-up-at-gunpoint part. But if you take a hundred dollars from someone who has hundreds of millions, the money part shouldn’t be part of the prosecution.

At that scale, it shouldn’t even be called stealing. We should have a different word for it, like “dusting.” Someone fed their family for a month with the money they dusted from some oil magnate, good for them.

Scapegoating by anecdote

For every one Mollie Tibbetts who’s murdered by an immigrant (whether documented or otherwise), there are…A LOT MORE nice young women murdered by American-born men.

If the goal is to minimize violent crime, sorry but targeting immigrants is focusing energy in the wrong direction. The lion’s share of criminals are here by birth.

But of course the use of Mollie Tibbetts as a poster child for border-walling isn’t about protecting women like Mollie. It’s about demonizing brown people coming from poor countries. Mollie’s family is having none of your bullshit.

“But criminals don’t obey laws!”

This is one of those pro-gun talking points that always gets projectile-vomited into the national discourse whenever we want to talk about gun control. We get comparisons with things like drug prohibition, which very obviously doesn’t work. The argument is basically that restrictions on guns won’t do anything to stop “criminals” from getting their hands on firearms, so it would be unfair to deprive non-criminals from legally owning guns. Preferably without background checks. Or any restrictions on things like magazine capacity. The assumption is that ordinary law-abiding citizens keep themselves—and others!—safe by owning guns. The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun, so don’t you dare take away my assault rifle.

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