The fundamental principle of laws and regulations
Laws and regulations exist to protect us. They protect us from unfair treatments, threats, or any activities that might harm us. Because of these laws and regulations, we are able to live our lives safely to carry on our day-to-day. We also understand that all laws and regulations are not perfect. This is why we see them being changed every once in a while. This implies that even though we have laws and regulation written, we still find some cases that are not covered. This makes us wonder why laws and regulations cannot be perfect. Would there be such a law or a regulation that can cover every case? As we know very well, the answer is ‘NO.’ In this article, we will explore why we need laws and regulations and what would be the ultimate function of laws and regulations. Throughout this article the word ‘laws’ will represents both laws and regulations.
Why do we need laws?
Laws exist to protect people from many types of harmful activities. This means that protection and safety is the main reason why we need laws. Under the protection from laws, we live our everyday lives safely. However, the word ‘protection’ does not necessarily apply a positive meaning since we have to give up some freedom at the same time. Since safety is the utmost importance in our life, it is understandable that people are willing to give up some freedom. This means that we all understand why we need the laws; however, there is one important question that needs to be answered, ‘why are laws imperfect?’ We find laws frequently edited or added. Some outdated laws would disappear but the rate of generating new laws is faster. This is the reason why we have so many law books. The brings up more questions, namely ‘Do we really need them all?’ and ‘if so, why?’
Lawless world: Utopia or Wild West?
It is easy for us to imagine a world without laws. Compared to the world today, it will be full of chaos of course. Yes, it should be a disaster without laws, pillaging and violence. Lets consider ‘why should it be a disaster?’ Is it because people have monsters inside of them or is it simply the way it is? To answer these questions, we need to go back to the previous question of‘why do we need laws?’ As discussed above, we need laws to protect ourselves. If the protection is against dangers from nature such as prevention wild fire, we don’t have to worry about the society being chaos even if we don’t make the laws related to these dangers. But it is because the major protections are against individuals’ activities that are harmful to others. In other words, laws exist to protect us from each other. Thus, before we discuss the need for laws, we have to explore why people need protection from each other. If people do good things and don’t do bad things, we don’t have to worry. However, not all the people do good things. ‘WHY?’ Is it because people naturally think that if they only do good things then they cannot get what they want? This seems to be general idea and can explain the current society as well. But is it really?
Do good things and don’t do bad things
Before discussing further let’s consider the following situation.
Let’s assume that you are the governor of a state. The people in your state are not very satisfied but you need to increase taxes to bring in more revenue to pay for some major activities. As you increase the tax, dissatisfaction level increases and people start to complain more and more. You don’t want any riots so you tighten the control of communication and add more law enforcements. As you apply more restrictions, people become more aggressive so you add more laws and more police power to control the situation. Over time you begin to worry about people around you. You start to think, what if one of my men get the support of the people and comes after me? Now, you have to increase the security and watch out for the people around you. To do this, you need even more money.
This situation clearly depicts that when a governor does not satisfy his/her people, the consequences of the governor’s performance could be severe. Then, what if the governor does the exact opposite from the above and actually satisfies his/her people? Here is a 2nd scenario;
You are the governor of a state and you are doing well. You make people happy by collecting just enough tax that government need. You don’t hide anything from your people. Since you aren’t collecting much of tax, people have enough money to invest to other productive activities. As a result, overall productions increased over years. As productions increases, people ask government to do more activity and people will be happy to pay more tax. In this situation, people are living satisfied life compare to the 1st scenario since they are producing maximum they can and they get maximum benefits from government. When people are living happy life, they don’t want to lose it. Thus, if anybody does harmful activity, the person would be isolated from the society by the people. If any other countries try to take their country over, people will stand against them.
From the cases above, we can find how‘doing good things’ will be rewarded later. If people are satisfied with their lives, they will be supportive for all the government activities. The governor may not be earning as much money as the 1st case. However, he/she has the most important thing in the world – the people’s support. When people are living satisfied and happy life, they have fewer tendencies to commit crimes thus the various laws are not required. This means that laws are required when people are not satisfied with their living. People who live happy and satisfied lives don’t do any harmful activities to others since they don’t want to lose what they have. Thus, the fundamental principle of laws is ‘people do not need laws when they are living happy and satisfied lives’. This principle is also the basis of democracy. If government satisfies people, people will follow spontaneously. Then the next question is, ‘how to make people live happy lives?’