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The Fulcrum of Freedom

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In the same way that tax revenues are not maximized by maximizing tax rates, as per the Laffer curve, freedom of action and opportunity is not maximized by maximizing legal freedom for everyone on the planet.  Podhoretz, for example, would not be more free if Hamas were legally permitted to set up Jew-baking ovens in New York City, just as Americans would not be more free if 50 million Mexicans were legally permitted to enter the country and begin voting for the sort of policies they are accustomed to voting for when choosing between the Partido Revolucionario Institucional and the Party of the Democratic Revolution, both of which are members of the Socialist International.

Since freedom is not easily mathematically quantified, it is not as simple to construct a Liberty curve as a Laffer curve, but the logic is the same.

Having the heart of an anarchist, I understand the case for eliminating government. It fails, like all theoretical utopias, when applied to imperfect men in a world open to evil.

All political theories based upon the non-aggression principle would not interfere with Hamas setting up those ovens, and would actually have to restrain Jews who might choose pre-emptive action in perceived self-defense. It seems naive to hope that Hamas could be prevented from fueling the ovens once they were built. More so under a minarchist or libertarian government.

Some slopes are slippery. The art of just governance is balancing the human tendency toward malice with the human tendency toward power.


I took a class in Democracy many years ago when I was studying Political Science.  I had to write a papaer on the difference between tyranny, anarchy and democracy.

Kenneth Arrow showed conclusively that there are no legitmately logical democratic voting methods.  You always have to give up something to vote for your representative.  What that something is will always range from a big thing that you care about (is it abortion, or taxes?) to something small (maybe that's immigration).  But the point is there is clearly a difference between all 3 of these governing models and democracy is preferable.  Why?

My paper contended that you have a natural balance in life between rhetoric and dialectical thought.  Many things in life can be argued logically and persuasively and many people will believe these things to be true - such as, it's bad to kill and it should be punished if it occurs.  Others require a dialectic to come to terms with the varying degrees of 'rightness" which the idea may offer - taxes are good if they are helping to make public life better and healthier.

Tyranny is rhetorical approach to governing, you do as you're told even if the tyrant is a benevolent one.  The logic is simple and usually undefined - it's just what you do.

Anarchy is a dialectical approach to governing, writ large.  Many voices, many views, no control or management, all grabbing, asking or demanding.  It can work, but usually in small groups.

Democracy takes the best of both (and sometimes the worst during the election season) and puts them on display so that we can continually decide what's best for us individually and as a group.

As Churchill said it's the worst form of government except for all the others.