[FoRK] Reply to Russell

Jeff Bone jbone at place.org
Mon Sep 20 21:42:06 PDT 2010

Russell, political philosophy is technology when reduced to practice.   
(That's not to say it is techne.  Neither is it episteme.) There is no  
reason why the same methods of reasoning and enquiry and development  
should not be suitable.

In particular, game and related theories, logics, and metamaths and so  
on should be appropriate for its study.  So, too, what we have learned  
about complex systems in general, and software (and it's lifecycle)  
particularly.  In some sense that's all it is, after all: code.

Arguing that reasoning that way about it is weak merely because it is  
not the way it has been approached before (or that it has yet to  
prevail over tradition) is rather unconvincing, or at least unhelpful.

The only folks that benefit from a hidebound tradition of alchemy  
are... alchemists.

If you want to have a true system of rights in any strong sense, then  
you have to define what they ARE, and proceed from there.

That's not to say history has nothing to offer us in such an endeavor.

Attempting to understand why previous systems have been less than  
satisfactory would seem to be of great benefit in this, too.

If you want to complain about how your (or anyone else's) *illusory*  
"rights" are infringed under an obviously compromised and increasingly  
broken system, be my guest.  But it's futile.

Without some well-formed model of the pathology in question, you can't  
cure the disease.  At best you can temporarily alleviate some of the  
symptoms for some patients.

IMHO, too, there's far too much attention on the epiphenomena.  It is  
not government that is truly broken, but metagovernment.  Government  
simply will be.  The problem isn't there, it's in what governs  
governments, and what controls how they relate to their subjects, and  
how they are created and destroyed (or rather, not...)

That's all I've really got to say about it for now.


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