Glenn Reynolds spends some time with Russ Roberts introduction to Adam Smith’s ‘Theory Of Moral Sentiments‘
Here’s a nice contrast:
Of course, there was a soda ban in Seattle, and now a soda tax in Berkeley, whose efficacy even some at Vox challenge (the kind of skirmishes between the activist base on the one hand…and the techno/bureaucrat aspiring journalistic outlets you can expect should Obamacare stay, mirrored even in the Bay Area itself with all the rising rents).
When you realize such sentiment is deeply connected to moral impulses, moralism (for thee but not for me), and often derives its reasoning from ideology, then the activism and emotion driving much Leftist and progressive politics can make more sense.
The control and illiberal impulses aren’t even paid much attention by true believers aiming for political power and meeting goals and deadlines, for they are simply bringing about a more just, verdant and equal world, and fighting against their enemies, and righteously helping the less fortunate within their ideology.
In fact, it may be necessary in order live up to the ideals and be ‘authentic.’
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I’m not always libertarian, but I join the cause in battling this kind of ideology and collectivism: Repost-‘Milton Friedman Via Youtube: ‘Responsibility To The Poor’
Addition: Friedman’s view of liberty is one of voluntary cooperative action. Anything more is an injustice to the individual and a serious threat to individual liberty (transferring too much power to the State through social programs like Social Security, Welfare etc and the injustice of taxation upon individuals and the dangers of the well-intentioned and do-gooders from the New Deal on). The voluntary exchanges that occur between people pursuing their own self-interest in the marketplace has been the greatest driver of human freedom and the greatest liberator from the natural human conditions of poverty, privation and want. Friedman merges Adam Smith’s invisible hand and Thomas Jefferson’s separation of powers: Free To Choose
Noam Chomsky also shares a view that the individual ought to be free to enter into voluntary cooperative action (community councils or faculties in universities), but believes that to be achieved by perhaps only anarchy (where he retreats) or anarcho syndicalism, or libertarian socialism. I don’t find anarchy to be tenable in protecting individual liberty. Via Youtube: (1 of 3) Kant, Chomsky and the Problem of Knowledge.
Leo Strauss may not have been a believer, but he did want the individual to be free from the structures that developed in Europe these past centuries. The triumph of Reason (historicism and positivism which lead to relativism and nihilism) over some form of Revelation, or revealed truth. Update And Repost- From YouTube: Leo Strauss On The Meno-More On The Fact/Value Distinction?’
Food for thought.
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…Robert George And Cornel West At Bloggingheads: “The Scandal Of The Cross”…How does Natural Law Philosophy deal with these problems, and those of knowledge?
Walter Russell Mead says the Great Society is over: A Few Thoughts On Walter Russell Mead At The American Interest: “Why Blue Can’t Save The Inner Cities Part I”