[FoRK] Misunderestimating "The" Tea Party

Jeff Bone jbone at place.org
Sat Mar 20 21:23:27 PDT 2010

Damien writes:

> The proof is in the pudding [and other nonsense...]

Okay, so you do believe it.  How unfortunate for you.

First, it's absolutely ridiculous (as James has already pointed out, beating me to the punch) to assume that the social choice fitness landscape and function(s) have remained static throughout human history.  The very nature of intelligence is that it distorts / modifies its own environment. Your argument only follows given some very static view of history, in which intelligence does not play a role and in which the depth and sophistication of our understanding of both goals and mechanisms of society do not themselves evolve.  We continually gain a much better understanding of and tools for the analysis of social choice;  otherwise, we'd still be stuck at a "divine right" rationalization of biggest-bully-makes-the-rules, as was the case for most of human existence.  (There's still a lot of that, of course;  just not quite as much as there might have been before.)

Second, what a stilted view of history you have!  It's worth recalling a ragtag bunch of "libertarians" who chose to disaggregate themselves from the bully of the day, and in doing so created the template for all your precious modern liberal democracies.  And that was despite boots on the ground and in the face of the greatest military on the planet at the time.  (A more recent example would be when the constituent republics decided to divest themselves of the baggage of their unnecessary union, bringing about the fall of the "USSR.")

So:  wrong in principle, wrong in practice.



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