Wednesday, January 23, 2008

All Authoritarians Are Dictators

Dictators frequently rise to power by convincing the masses that they are, alone, capable of handling some crisis.
Liberal democracy is sweet and addictive and indeed in the most extreme case, the USA, unbridled individual liberty overwhelms many of the collective needs of the citizens. . .

There must be open minds to look critically at liberal democracy. Reform must involve the adoption of structures to act quickly regardless of some perceived liberties. . .

We are going to have to look how authoritarian decisions based on consensus science can be implemented to contain greenhouse emissions.


[T]he authors conclude that an authoritarian form of government is necessary, but this will be governance by experts and not by those who seek power.

It is no coincidence that the authors propose that the reins of power be handed over to people like themselves - after all, every advocate of central planning envisions themselves as the central planner.

But this is nothing other than a naked power grab - you cannot separate power from the experts. You already see scientists making public statements about climate that are much less uncertain than their scientific claims. And what does science tell us about the impact of those policy decisions? Science doesn't really have anything to say does it?

Why should I trust a climatologist to weigh the costs and benefits of eliminating emissions? Wouldn't I need an economist to make those types of distinctions?

But doesn't economics tell us that only an individual can truly weigh those costs and benefits by using their own preferences? So the Gaea loving worshiper of nature may prize the "natural "state above any economic cost, but the middle class suburbanite - or the impoverished Indian that is on the cusp of middle class life - may rather live with a couple degrees of warmth in order to gain a level of comfort that would be destroyed otherwise.

Then there is the question of consensus - what does consensus really mean in science? Isn't it an irrelevant concept? Once upon a time scientific consensus was the world was flat and the Earth was the center of the universe and that men couldn't fly and ...

In short, any attempt to solve this problem by turning to authoritarian measures will leave us with a dictatorship and can anyone point to a dictatorship that was pleasant for those that were not in power?

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