Is the State a Paradox?

Imaged by mariann72 |

Written by Muhammad Natsir Tahar

Life is surrounded by paradoxes. Some paradoxes can have an answer, although many remain unsolved, or are only solved by debate. Paradox is effective enough to create an earthquake in the mind.

In the definition of paradoxes, it is stated that a paradox is a situation that arises from a number of premises that are acknowledged to be true and starts from a statement that leads to a contradiction.

The etymology of paradox can be traced back to the renaissance, from paradoxon meaning according to what is accepted. This term almost coincides with orthodox (direct teaching) and heterodox (different teachings).

In our daily life, sometimes the paradox arises when something has a truth value but has the opportunity to be undermined. The Law of Contradiction or Principium Contradictionis (Wikipedia), is a rule which states that it is impossible for something to be that thing and not that thing at the same time. While the paradox of trying to break this law, that something is possible is precisely the two things mentioned.

The oldest and most well-known paradox is the liars paradox, when Epimenides says that all Cretans are liars. While Epimenides was a Cretan, which means he was a liar. If Epimenides lied, it means that the Cretans were all honest, whereas Epimenides was a Cretan, and so on.

Practically, the paradox is like a dilemma, it is usually used to argue against the interlocutor by placing him in a difficult and awry situation.

The paradox of a lie is like a trap when someone start stelling it. As written in several articles, there is a kind of paradox of lies called the Pinocchio Paradox.

Pinocchio said, “My nose will grow long”. As we know Pinocchio’s nose will grow if he lies. And if he says his nose will grow and it doesn’t, then Pinocchio is lying. Thus because of lying his nose willlengthen.

But if his nose is long it means he is telling the truth. Automatically if he tells the truth then his nose will not grow. Thus Pinocchio is in a state where his nose will lengthen while his nose will not.

There are some interesting paradoxes to mess around with. The first is the Grandfather Paradox. This paradox reads, “If we could go back in time and kill our grandfather, what would happen?”

Probably, the easy answer is that the old man will die. But the answer or result of the condition is not that simple. If our grandfather dies, our parents will automatically not be born into the world, and of course we will also not be born into the world, then this means that we also never killed our grandfather. Then how can it happen that our condition kills our grandfather while the result of our grandfather being killed makes us not born into the world.

Another paradox and the most controversial is the Paradox of Omnipotence. This paradox is often used by atheists to express their opinion on the absence of God. It reads: “God is Almighty and He can do anything. The question is, can God Almighty create a rock super heavy that even God himself cannot lift it?”

There are two important premises in this paradox. First, can God create the stone? Because God is almighty then of course He can. The second premise, but if God created the stone and can’t lift it, it would show that there is something God can’t do and at the same time break the first premise.

The answer to this paradox cannot be found in our logic. Because God himself is beyond the reach of human logic.

In factual conditions we find a paradox in the collection of taxes by the state. Call it the Tax Paradox. The state ideally has the duty to fulfill the public welfare. But at the same time the state collects taxes from the people. Withholding taxes resulted in a decrease in the level of welfare.

On the other hand, if the state does not collect taxes, the state cannot carry out its function for the welfare of the people. Meanwhile, to carry out its function for the welfare of the people, the state must collect taxes.

This paradox will be answered if a condition is created that the tax that is withdrawn is actually returned to the people in another form, so that the welfare that is reduced due to the tax collection is immediately replaced.

But will the condition be like that, if later what is returned to the people in the form of public facilities and public services is actually financed from other sources such as debt and non-tax income?

Meanwhile, the tax that was withdrawn turned out to be used up only to finance itself in an extravagant way, for example.

Meanwhile, programs that are contradictory to public welfare, such as the elimination of subsidies and the expansion and increase in the amount of tax levies, are intensified by the state when it has to do the opposite. ~