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Using a tree to understand property concepts


 
 

Imagine a tree. That tree exists on someone's property, so we say that the tree is his property. But in what sense is it really his property? Is it possible that the reasons for calling the tree property based on the arbitrary assumptions of one culture?

Look at the tree again. It lives, it breaths, it grows. The CO2 that it draws from the atmosphere did not come from the property from which it grows. The water it absorbs did not come from this property; regardless of whether the water was from a river, or from rain, or from a well, it came from other properties. The sunlight that the tree absorbs are not from this property; its not even from this planet. So the very things from which the tree is made not from this property, and the ecosystem on which the tree depends extends far beyond this property. The owner neither pays for, nor is responsible for these items.

The tree will produce oxygen. This oxygen will flow all over the earth and the owner will not be compensated for this production. The tree will support other life including birds, squirrels, insects, and fungus. None of these living things will be confined to