20 Nov 2019

Bob Murphy’s Lessons for Libertarians

Bob Murphy Show 2 Comments

The latest episode of the Bob Murphy Show.

2 Responses to “Bob Murphy’s Lessons for Libertarians”

  1. Bitter Clinger says:

    It is well established that the purpose of government and society is to make life safe, easy and egalitarian. If the Libertarians cannot make a cogent case that the Benefits of Liberty deliver safe , easy and egalitarian they are doomed to failure. Forty years ago Milton Friedman made an a posteriori case that Freedom to Choose delivers prosperity, at least on average. Over ten years ago I tried to make the case a priori based upon the mathematical properties of constraints. See http://lp-thoughts-philosophy.blogspot.com/ It seems we both failed.

    Every society has two roads they can follow. There is the wide and smooth path that has the sign above which states “To Safe, Easy, and Egalitarian”. That path leads to the spiritual, economic, and moral bankruptcy of Venezuela, North Korea, or Cuba. The other path is narrow and rocky, over it has a sign that says: “The Benefits of Liberty”. While the going is difficult and many will stumble and some will fall, it leads to Peace, Prosperity, and a sense of Personal Fulfillment.

    The insight I would like to pass on to Libertarians (If any still exist) is that Constraint Theory tells us that not all constraints are in “solution”, that is holding us back. To eliminate a constraint that may infringe our freedom may be personally gratifying, if it doesn’t make any difference in the long run why do it? It is a waste of time and effort, nothing more than throwing shoes into the mechanism. I made some suggestions in 2005 for what I believed were the constraints that are holding us back but they may not be valid any more. I would be interested in What Dr. Murphy thinks are the most important ones today.

    • Harold says:

      “The simple observation that planned economies have never delivered what they promise and that every civilization in all recorded history has collapsed would seem to support the libertarian literature that planned societies are doomed to failure. ”

      Yes, but it even more supports the view that societies based on individual freedom are doomed to failure. None has ever even got off the ground beyond possibly some small hunter-gatherer societies.

      If such societies delivered we would expect that they would out-compete the rule based versions. The simple observation that they have never done so or even come anywhere near close would seem to support the view that individual freedom based societies are doomed to failure..

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