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20 Nov, 6 tweets, 1 min read
The basic case for a libertarian disposition, ie scepticism of the state (though not necessarily libertarianism per se), is as follows:
1. Why trust that state agents will be well-meaning?

2. Even if they are, why trust that they know what is true and good, or share my beliefs on those matters?

3. Even if they are well-meaning and share my conception of the true and good, why trust them to be competent?
4. Even if they are well-meaning, upon what I believe to be true and good, and competent, why does that justify coercion?

5. Even if it does, why this sort of coercion: ie instrumentalising others for their own good or the mental construct "aggregate welfare"?
Moreover, all four of these reasons in favour of being sceptical of the state are also reasons in favour of being sceptical of any kind of collective.

There's a reason why libertarianism and individualism tend to go hand in hand, the same sentiments drive both.
Cognisance of this might be one factor why libertarian political movements tend to get little traction.

Libertarian organisations seem as filled with ill-meaning, wrong headed / stupid, immoral, and incompetent people seeking to impose their vision on others as all the rest.
The flip-side of this is something in libertarianism favour, though.

Being off-put by other libertarians reminds you of how dislikeable other people and collectives are, and strengthens your conviction that they should have less coercive power over your life!

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More from @Evollaqi

21 Nov
I'm absolutely shocked and appalled at seeing people supporting Khadim Rizvi on my feed.

If there was ever a clear line between right and wrong, it's here.
He stands for opposition to the rule of law and due process, vigilante lynch mobs murdering people, paralysis of government, anti-democracy terrorism (agree with us or we'll incite your assassination), no minority rights, and campaigning not on development but on pure bigotry
People in Pakistan who support this deserve one of the poorest, least safe, and most dysfunctional societies on earth – and for it to get worse.

People in the west who support this owe their entire existence to the rule of law and minority rights: they should leave the west.
Read 8 tweets
20 Nov
Having thought about this, I'm of the feeling that isolationism – nations trading with other nations but otherwise minding their own business – is impossible given the Hobbesian world order.
Unless you have a world government which i) enforces national sovereignty and ii) complete free trade – just as states internally enforce (at least a degree of) individual sovereignty and free trade – then you're inevitably going to have a situation where
defecting (from respecting national sovereignty and pure free trade) is going be the dominant strategy.

Absent some global mechanism to solve the collective action problem posed by world anarchy, if you don't defect you will be completely screwed.
Read 30 tweets
14 Nov
In some corners of academia there is unwarranted hostility towards evolutionary psychology.

The standard explanation for this is the moralistic fallacy: people don't like evopsych's conclusions, so they reject the discipline.

I think this is right, but not the whole story.
Evolutionary psychology is a limit on people's power.

If human psychology isn't a totally blank canvas for society and individuals to construct, then this gives them less ability to say "this is how society and individuals should be, and this is how we're going to make them so".
(This is also a variant of the moralistic fallacy, but not the one commonly cited.

The common one says people object to evopsych because of specific conclusions it reaches, eg on gender.

I'm saying that people also object irrespective of the specific conclusions reached.
Read 4 tweets
14 Nov
There are people people outraged that the US military has NOT intervened in some conflict around the world – eg Syria, Armenia, Ethiopia – as if the US has an obligation to concern itself with things going on half way across the planet and fight wars on other peoples' behalf
This view seemd absurd even on the assumption that we can reliably predict that US military intervention would improve things.

Why is the US obligated to be altruistic?
But in reality, that assumption is highly dubious, making this outrage even more absurd.

Has the sprawling violence the US inflicts on the world in the name of being the global policeman really been a net benefit to the world?
Read 4 tweets
8 Nov
Rather than asking whether the US should have an "imperialist" or "non-imperialist" foreign policy (not a bad question per se), I think the questions posed in the quoted thread are more clarifying. /1
Broadly speaking, I think US foreign policy faces three options:

1. Continue to act as the guarantor of a global world order, which it primarily built, and which it has the power to selectively enforce and selectively adhere to. /2
2. Give up belief in the existence of, or the commitment to, such a global world order, and instead seek to maximise its self-interest and promote its conception of the good as far as it can in a largely anarchical world. /3
Read 65 tweets
31 Oct
"Chick culling" – the shredding, crushing, or asphyxiation of 7 billion male baby chicks a year (because males don't lay eggs and are thus uneconomical) – is too horrifying to share footage of.

Babies are put en masse on conveyer belts and killed.

Most of us are complicit.
Even if one doesn't believe in vegetarianism or veganism, how one can think that this practice is halal or would have been tolerated by the Prophet ﷺ had it been around in his day is beyond me.
For most human beings in most of human history, and still most human beings today, meat and animal produce are essential for survival and health.

I think there's a legitimate shar'i question as to whether those today who through science and money can have a perfectly adequate
Read 7 tweets

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