Can The Truth Be A Commons? 


—“Truth telling is commons, but truth is not commons?”—

[L]et me state this clearly:

“The act of habituating truth-telling as both a normative behavior and skill is an expensive normative commons (asset) for a population to construct.”

1) How does truth telling exist?

The commons of truth telling exists as both demonstrated habit, and in the institutional means for its inter-temporal and intergenerational persistence: testimony, jury and law.

2) How does truth exist?

I put it this way: that information can be treated as a commons, and we can protect the informational commons just as we do every other commons both physical and normative.

So when we propose the statement ‘is the truth a commons?’ we are stuck with whether can we treat the truth as a commons.

That requires we define truth, which as far as I know, can consist only of the extant history of truthfully constructed statements. If we protected those statements, then that’s not logical. Because we do not in fact know whether they are true, only that they are truthfully constructed.

3) So our only choice then is to require that only truthful statements enter into the commons, and then let the best surviving statements rise and the lesser fall. Just as we require only non-harmful products enter into the market for goods and services and allow them to rise and fall.

There is no truth that can exist as a commons. There can exist only truthfully constructed statements. And we cannot protect those statements since it’s counter-productive. We can only prohibit ‘polluting’ them like all other commons.

Curt Doolittle
The Propertarian Institute
Kiev, Ukraine.

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