Return to Physical Force

Altruism gives to the use of force a moral sanction, making it not only an unavoidable practical recourse, but also a positive virtue, an expression of militant righteousness.

A man is morally the property of others—of those others it is his duty to serve—argue Fichte, Hegel, and the rest, explicitly or by implication. As such, a man has no moral right to refuse to make the requisite sacrifices for others. If he attempts it, he is depriving men of what is properly theirs, he is violating men’s rights, their right to his service—and it is, therefore, an assertion of morality if others intervene forcibly and compel him to fulfill his obligations. “Social justice” in this view not only allows but demands the use of force against the non-sacrificial individual.

Copyright © 1986 by Harry Binswanger. Introduction copyright © 1986 by Leonard Peikoff. All rights reserved. For information address New American Library.


Excerpts from The Ominous Parallels, by Leonard Peikoff. Copyright © 1982 by Leonard Peikoff. Reprinted with permission of Stein and Day Publishers. Excerpts from The Romantic Manifesto, by Ayn Rand. Copyright © 1971, by The Objectivist. Reprinted with permission of Harper & Row, Publishers, Inc. Excerpts from Atlas Shrugged, copyright © 1957 by Ayn Rand, The Fountainhead, copyright © 1943 by Ayn Rand, and For the New Intellectual, copyright © 1961 by Ayn Rand. Reprinted by permission of the Estate of Ayn Rand. Excerpts from Philosophy: Who Needs It, by Ayn Rand. Copyright © 1982 by Leonard Peikoff, Executor, Estate of Ayn Rand. Reprinted by permission of the Estate of Ayn Rand. Excerpts from “The Philosophy of Objectivism” lecture series. Copyright © 1976 by Leonard Peikoff. Reprinted by permission. Excerpts from Alvin Toffler’s interview with Ayn Rand, which first appeared in Playboy magazine. Copyright © 1964. Reprinted by permission of Alvin Toffler. All rights reserved including the right of reproduction in whole or in part in any form. Used by arrangement with Plume, a member of Penguin Group (USA), Inc.