Three Institutions And Why Libertarianism Is The Answer To Political Problems

The nuclear family is an expensive artifice. It is economically accountable. It is the smallest economically accountable unit (tribe) humans can produce. It requires constant compromise. It requires suppression of our instincts and desires. It requires a long time preference. Because of that it encourages late marriage, and careful mate selection. The reward we get for economic accountability, constant compromise, suppression of our instincts and desires, the risk of planning, delaying marriage, and careful mate selection, is status cues and economic enfranchisement by others who pay these high costs. Conversely, if we do not ‘conform’ we pay the cost of lost economic and social opportunity. If one ‘cheats’ through non conformity, one is effectively obtaining the benefits of this highly conforming, high-trust, highly productive social order at a discount — at the expense of others, and they see it as ‘unfair’.

It is not clear to westerners who live in a universe of nuclear families, that this social order is an artificial construct created by the church in order to undermine inbreeding and family and tribal ties. The church outlawed marrying as far out as six cousins. (if we did that to the muslim world they would be unable to breed.) The manorial system required that one demonstrate fitness in order to obtain land to rent, in order to obtain a wife and feed a family (and obtain access to sex.) These three systems: the manorial (corporate) system, and the nuclear family, and the common law, induced the conformity we see as ‘western conservatism’. (which is inaccurate. It’s western germanic christian manorialism with english classical liberal institutions that ‘conservatives’ feel ‘conservative’ about.) But it is impossible to create a high trust society (“getting to Denmark”) without these three systems. That is why the west is unique. It used the nuclear family, the ‘corporation’, and the common law (no centralized power) to create a highly accountable system where allegiance was to society as a whole rather than family or tribe. And by doing so, this process insured quality breeding: it suppressed the breeding of the underclasses. (Which has led to the assertion, that while western ‘whites’ and ashkenazi jews previously had the same IQ distribution, we have fallen by 5 points since 1850 because of overbreeding by the lower classes. As it stands, the USA will continue to decline in aggregate IQ over the next century. The impact of this is not something we understand. But given that both the greek pre-industrial revolution and the British industrial revolution occurred after a similar duration of manorialism makes it very curious as to whether our way of life, which is predicated on verbal reasoning that requires a substantial part of the population possess an IQ over 106, is worth considering.)

That this economic and social system unarticulated is one of the great unfortunate features of history.It prevents conservatives from understanding that their social system can adapt given the proper institutions and ridiculous non-conforming objections like race and sexual preference are immaterial if the institutional safeguards are in place to protect the economy from aberrant norms.

WIthout understanding our own society as a set of causal institutions we cannot create a government of exchanges where both win rather than dictates where one loses. And the central premise of libertarian philosophy is that we can EXCHANGE, rather than FORCE each other to do things.

2 responses to “Three Institutions And Why Libertarianism Is The Answer To Political Problems”

  1. Great concise stuff. Have you read Victor Davis Hanson’s “The Other Greeks”? I ask because it’s not on the reading list but I think it fits in well with your ideas as presented here and elsewhere on the site.

  2. Thanks Fred.
    I probably should add TOG and the note “everything he has written” to my list. I’ll do that, thank you.

    1) His work is not well organized and is often criticized for that purpose. I don’t know how I feel about it because as an analytical philosopher I tend to want someone to make a techical argumetn even if he surrounds it only with anecdotes.

    2) I think Hanson is one of the people that successfully demonstrates an unstated but unique property of western civilization: MARKETS WERE MADE, THEY DID NOT EVOLVE. I use this idea pretty consistently in my work. The corporate model is not something new. We have been doing it in the west for three thousand years. market makers are shareholders without contractual documents. And the entire edifice of western culture arises from the agrarian model where enfranchisement was earned by service, and where one had to supply one’s own capital (armor).

    Thank you for the suggestion and the compliment.


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