Monday, April 23, 2012

A Curious Task

This semester has distilled within me a great fear of those who would act in my best interest without my consent. Far too many individuals would if given the power hold themselves as ruler of their fellow brethren, in order to attain some higher need. This need may stem from a desire for power or of a purely altruistic love. Regardless of intent this need will always hold a certain commonality. Hubris. Yes hubris, a true pretense of knowledge and of the self.
This is not meant to be a diatribe directed against society or collective reasoning. Frank points to the state as the only avenue for peace and prosperity, the only stay against a life that is nasty, brutish and short. Yet he is caught unaware of a simple trick that we are taught as children; that there is a state, that there is a social contract, that there is a responsibility to be a good slave. The state does not exist, nor does the social contract. The state at any given point in time is simply someone pointing a weapon, the social contract is a mythical document designed to allow the slaves to police themselves.
In a free society there would be violence and aggression yes, but it could not be constant. In a state society that violence is very much assured. People can and will economize and produce without violence, it has always been done outside the threat of state.
When looking to design the world around you look to yourself. Does your opinion matter? Do your own morals? Would you not want to be forced to follow another's? If yes, then ask yourself: If I would not want this done to myself then why would I do it to another? For quite some time the study of economics has avoided the issue of morals, even though they must indeed play a factor in one's rationalization. Though modern models may be tidy and neat we are urged to try and be respectful of what is not known. Always look for what is not known, expect the unexpected and hold true a grasp upon reality. To close, a quote I hope any economics student will find valuable: "The curious task of economics is to demonstrate to men how little they really know about what they imagine they can design." - F.A. Hayek

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