Sunday, March 11, 2012

Political spectrum, another view

I have posted before about the concept of Nolan chart, where political spectrum is represented in terms of two axes -- one representing political/social freedom and another representing economic freedom:



Today I saw this representation of the political spectrum, in terms of what services the government should be providing:


(click on the image to enlarge)

It shows that first of all, modern Conservatives and Liberals are not that different from each other, second, Ron Paul barely scratches the surface in pursuit of freedom (he is the minimally acceptable candidate), third, "voluntarism" sounds better when you're discussing your views at your (prospective) in-laws' dinner table than "anarchy" or "anarcho-capitalism".

The simple way to battle communists is with statistics. Examples of USSR and Sweden (before it went socialist vs. after, etc.). When people tell you that USSR was also totalitarian, ask them what that has to do with economics. Explain that you're talking here only about the effectiveness of the state providing services.

When battling people "below" communists (even all the way to minarchists), ask why the free markets cannot provide for all the services "below" the cut-off point (whatever it is for the individual) vs. "above". I.e., if free markets can provide food, why can't they provide education? Why not police? Why not law? (Use medieval Ireland and Jewish Law in the last 2000 years for examples of non-centralized legislature and arbitration in the hands of competing private legal authorities.)

When people quote Pirkei Avos to you, ask them, first, whether they believe that without doctors and hospitals many more people would be sick, and second, whether this means that medicine needs to be in the hands of a single centralized monopoly vs. a large number of competing service providers. Why can't the same apply to the government?

By the way, when people hear "voluntarism" and "voluntary exchange" they for some reason assume that this means no crime. I.e., if we are to have voluntary exchange of services, then we all need to be peaceful. But since we are not peaceful, we need the government to impose peace on the society.

But that argument simply states the need for protection and legislature services. Those are also services that can be provided and subscribed to voluntarily. For more information see Robert Murphy's article "But Wouldn't Warlords Take Over?"

3 comments:

e said...

don't you ever get bored of discussing this stuff?

e said...

Damn. With blogger's new format, I can't subscribe.

Certified Ashkenazi said...

No, why would I get tired of it?

Do you have any preferences as to what I should discuss?