[FoRK] Challenge for Zee and Stephen

Jeff Bone jbone at place.org
Mon Jun 30 09:45:02 PDT 2008


On Jun 30, 2008, at 11:03 AM, Jeff Bone wrote:

> Let's turn this around.

BTW, this part of the whole platform is at a point of diminishing  
returns;  I'd happily accept the status quo here in exchange for  
consideration of various other concerns.  I've asked my (mostly  
rhetorical, though I'd be interested in answers) questions, and I  
don't see much point in arguing this one particular item much further  
if at all.

The interesting thing about this point being particularly  
controversial is that I believe that Zee and Stephen --- and most of  
the people who object to the proposed system --- may actually be  
revealing a fundamental bias that they may or may not be aware of, but  
that is critically important to questions of social justice.  That  
bias is this:  a preference for systems which are weighted in the  
favor of those without vested interest over those that have vested  
interest.

Z / S:  could that in fact be the case?  Perhaps you recognize that  
the system as constructed is not "fair" in the sense of providing  
equal protection / balanced risk-reward to both the plaintiff and the  
defendant in any given case, but rather you regard the system as  
"fair" in that it provides what you see as a desirable *imbalance* in  
favor of the little guy.  I.e., gov't establishment exists in part to  
flex its muscles on behalf of the little guy, and if the effect of  
that is a more-than-is-otherwise-fair monetary flow from the wealthy  
to the not-so, then so be it, that's fine;  and the creation and  
enrichment of a whole class of social parasites as a side effect is  
deemed an acceptable cost for that "beneficial" redistributive  
effect.  Or perhaps to put that less dismissively;  systematic  
advantages to a given side of an issue are acceptable as long as that  
side is the otherwise in some sense weaker side;  the system should  
comprehend and endeavor to offset various weaknesses among its  
participants.

I strongly suspect that's at least part of the story for many in terms  
of unexamined preferences, though perhaps not the case w/ Zee and  
Stephen.

jb





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