David Baird “Infinitely-more-than-minimal States”
Isdom: the domain of what is. Reality.
S-Change: Socialist meta-exchange.
Nozick likens the condition in a non-minimal state to slavery. The minimal state (MS) is one which is a level above the state of nature, with people acquiring no more rights than they would have in the (imaginary) Lockian state of nature. They would have the right not to be killed by a goon with a club, but not the right not to be let die by a goon with a drug factory, for lack of medication. The MS functions as a dominant protective agency, and freedom to engage in capitalistic exchange, or “X-change,” is highly valued. A state such as our real America is a slave state, according to Nozick. This can be seen if we compare ourselves to the master-slave relationship. He gives a nine-step account (p.290, Anarchy, State, and Utopia), from one’s being a total slave under a brutal master, to one’s being a citizen of, or slave to, the modern state, which treats one somewhat well, though controlling one’s life, but gives one a vote to throw in with all the other slaves’ votes about how to let things go.
First of all, what is slavery? A master controlling your moves? Isn’t this similar to the boss-worker relationship in a free market, where people are forced to work to survive, usually have no choice about who to work for or what to do, and are treated as replaceable parts, who don’t even need to be maintained well, because other even more desperate souls are in line to take their jobs? In capitalism, all work is equivalent to prostitution. Temporarily allowing yourself to be screwed, or your body to be used in some other imaginative way conducive to the payer’s benefit.
Nozick thinks the aggregate, the group, is like a master. But there are differences. First of all, in a coherently structured society, the aggregate would be much more rational than an individual master would likely be. Most people in a nation-large group are sane and decent, so the aggregate is self-corrective of its more neurotic and sick individuals, when coming to aggregate decisions about how to order life. Given “ag-ra,” or aggregate rational, control of society, our goal would not be to exploit ourselves, which is what a master presumably likes to do to his slaves. Just as parents should not be out to enslave their children, but instead to lovingly guide them in their growth, so they turn out to be amazing, creative and curious people. It’s the game plan that matters. The ag-ra game plan is to harmonize human potentiality, and allow for the ultimate fulfillment of individual desire and common good. This game plan is not quite that of a slaveholder. Sure there would be a vast police and military apparatus, quite capable of forcing you to pay your taxes. They would not, as Nozick suggests, decide for you your hairstyle or recreational drugs.
Our society does not disallow drug use for the good of the users. This can be seen by the fact that when they are caught, they are put in jail to be raped and HIV’d. Our society probably disallows drug use because drugs such as pot counteract group-think, and lead to more radicalism and individuality. If it were about their real danger, then other more dangerous things like alcohol wouldn’t be legal.
“So much been said, so little been done.
They still killin’ the people, and havin’ their fun.”
Bob Marley, Crisis
My argument centers around rational aggregates, “heteroactualities.” An “actuality” is a reality, like the reality of being a philosopher during McCarthyism, or the reality of being a student writing a paper he knows is incoherent. Each of us is an actuality. As a society we are thus a heteroactuality, but as of yet we are not a rational aggregate. Rich Media, Poor Democracy, by Robert McChesney, makes this abundantly clear. Our society’s nervous system, the media’s, are controlled by small groups who are interested in maintaining this control, and also, sadly, maintaining business-as-usual, and who have the means to do it, because they prescribe the content of the information that the masses are fed, the masses then not being able to figure out what’s going wrong, and to make their votes count for something.
To me the choice is: I can act freely in capitalism, and X-change things, or I can act according to law and limitation, and base my theory on the meta-exchange. The meta-exchange is the resultant meaning alteration of the world that takes place after an exchange. Total meaning-in-the-world. X-change relies on tunnel visioning into one single transfer of whatever and thinking it is the whole story. But wide horizons are affected by changes. S-change takes the horizon of influencibility into account. Admittedly, it is somewhat hard to debate the merits of a free market, being that it does not exist. The current regime is an exquisitely managed system of domination, with the requirement to respect the stronger powers, and the ability to exploit the weaker, and to call it “free” would be stretching things, when the legal frameworks such as GATT are hundreds of pages long.
What world do we think we want? One where the structures are robust enough to prevent their exploitation. The governmental structures. Which will take a total re-conceptualization of our relations to each other. The choice about the media’s, and the “sharing choice,” about distribution of fruits, are the most important choices a society makes. What’s wrong with our world? The system is used/abused to transfer anti-lack from those who have little to spend to those who think little of spending a lot. How is the system used to do this? I can’t repeat that here. One World, Ready or Not, by William Greider, explains it completely, which is the useful way to have it explained. All I can say is that the reality is a bit more complex than Nozick is willing to let on, and to alter it in a positive way will take ultra-complex legal and perhaps extra-legal doings, far surpassing the mere protection of our freedom that he would offer as the only necessity. For instance it will be necessary to tax currency speculation, which is tremendously huge today, and not only completely unproductive of goodness except for anti-lack, but actually does immense harm to economies as their currencies fluctuate wildly because of the experimental free-for-all.
What does “cash” do? It solves your lack. Anti-lack. Now they’ve developed cryptographic cash, secret electronic net cash that is invisible to authority. This will allow criminals to hide their money forever easily. And when I say “criminal” think of blood, guts, torture chambers and systematic social repression, because this is what the big ones are up to. So I will use the term “anti-lack”, because “cash” suggests substance, and there is no substance to anti-lack. It is pure quantity, without extension, reducible to digital state. Cash is digital state, like music and tv. Its flows we shall call “rivers” and the rich’s hordes we shall call “ponds.”
The basic conflict is about how the fruits of polynature, the political-natural reality, the things that are, will be shared. Because: this is a decision, and not an automatic no-brainer inevitability. The gov decides who to give huge loans to, loans which are then used by corporations in global enterprises which work to enrich abstract owners totally disconnected from our home society, whilst simultaneously working to impoverish domestic workers. An abstract owner is a stockholder who gets the benefit from enterprise but has no responsibility for its wrongdoing. To stop decisions like this being made, must we (become) the gov? To save the world, we must [blank] the gov.
To save the world and reach utopia... Nozick’s framework for utopia is an allowance heteroutopia, where everyone’s allowed to do their thing if they set up a community to do it in. Nozick’s utopia is a collection of different utopia’s, because he thinks people would want different ways of life, and that somehow the potheads wouldn’t be able to coexist with the Christians, and they’d need different communities. With an uber-protective agency. Maybe even only one in the world. Where they’re not afraid to right the wrongs, as long as that doesn’t involve impingement upon permissions to be free. (Being “free” means no one pays for your well-being. You’re given a way to live, by lucky choice of parents.)
My utopia is a many-righted heterodemocracy. Like our intelligences, our rights are not limited by a priori models. And neither is the structure of our operations. There are local laws and state laws. People can move into local areas that do things a bit differently. Like your house is the ultimate local area, or your room if you’re a kid. I would diverge from Nozick because there are many problems with the minimal state. The state that only enforces permissions, and not entitlements. Permissions specify “the individual’s intellectual possibilities (freedoms of thought, expression, religion, and so on) or physical possibilities (freedoms of work, commerce, assembly, and so on),” while entitlements “define not the powers of acting and that are opposable to the state, but powers of obliging the state to a number of services.” (p.16, From the Rights of Man to the Republican Idea, by Luc Ferry and Alain Renaut). If I am disabled, I am entitled to the help I need to function. I should not have to rely on the random whim of volunteers. Our aggregate behavior should be systematic. Save the irrationality for the bedroom, and let the political philosophers explain about world domination.
Those without lack should positive-wise developmentally re-complicate their enterprises so as to allow for rationality of control, responsibility, and benefit. I would rethink the word “profits.” People “benefit” from enterprise. It’s somewhat odd to say “I profited from my intimate relationship with Karen.” Some people get (all) the benefit, some are the peeps-who-are-nothing-but-parts. (The unlucky ones aren’t even parts. We do not want them to take part in our celebration of victory over nature.)
Why does Nozick make us like nations in our relations with each other? A peep (chat slang for person) is likened to a large group of peeps? Isn’t that circular? We are peeps. We are expected to help. Buckle up, buttercup. If you want to go for this place’s ride, better strap down and get on this place’s side. Pay your taxes. Although a provision could be made for people to disallow their personal taxes to be spent on program X that they find particularly annoying. This would be a sort of secondary voting, not for representatives, but for programs.
There is enough food to feed the world. But to do that would be boring, I suppose. Or it would be too much trouble. I’m kidding. There is no lack. Lack does not exist. (The absence of value, or cash). Anti-lack permeates reality. For now. Whilst the earth’s biosphere is still kicking. Perhaps before we extinct the rest of the lifeforms, we will reach the poly-omega point. The political omega point, when peeps are in total control of peepsdom, and our interpersonal problems are solved. The infrastructure has been built. Now we need to control it. Direct it or executive-produce it. The executive producer should be the idea-peep who invents radical points of view from which to look anew at enterprises, and even enterprise itself.
Nozick seems less interested in the hetero-ontogeny of polyslavery. Polyslavery involves all different types of slaves. In contemporaneity, even the rich are spiritually enslaved by injustice. Not free to feel morally acceptable. The system calls you a number. So you have the right to make fun of its peeps. Make fun of slaves? If they choose to be slaves. At this point we must say the submission is pseudo-willful, polynatural and hetero-ontogenic and hopefully clinically-critically treatable.
We want goodness to be a common thing. Anti-lack isn’t all there is to goodness. Potentiality-wise heteroactuality is the good. Composite discovery of fulfillment of heteropotentialities. “Potential” sounds like we’re wiring a house or something. Peeps have heteropotentialities, and these should be fully amazing. We should give peeps fullest luck.
My philosophy is anti-goon. Nozick’s is anti-rationality. He would let peeps structure society according to their random flights of fancy, while I would call upon the group to get its act together and coordinate the intelligent engagement with the parameters of human life. Heteroagency is the aggregate’s agency. Different from homoagency, an individual’s. “But the state is decorticate, and shouldn’t be allowed to do what it wants.” Wrong—it is composed of many minds. How do minds link? What is the power of the matrix of all human minds? We don’t know, since our matrix is disordered. It is probably fairly powerful. Now its power is being decoherently radiantly dissipated into the void of meaningless consumption by a few and meaningless toil by the many.
You should have freedom to engage in non-capitalistic acts. Metaexchanges. Benefitistic situations. “This situation benefits me and them.” I don’t see how we could oppose it, unless it involves restructuring the rationality of peepsdom’s logistical structure. Mental re-rationalization and revolution is always allowed. And encouraged.
Nozick thinks some states might be into censorship. But it’s obvious that books aren’t dangerous, unless you’re a member of a repressive regime and the population you’re repressing might figure out you maybe shouldn’t remain as such. Books are fine if we’re allowed to react to them and criticize. Not if they’re the last word. Revolutionary style/content is the highest grade of art. We do not need nonrevolution. We have had enough of that.
How could rights be limited, when intelligence and context aren’t? How can we say, “In all situations, you have these rights”? Situationality. In what situations does our duty to uphold rights waver? Apocalyptic? Live wars? Selfist gov’s tend to violate civil rights in times of war. Or, all the time. A war on error. X’s pain is more important to solve than Y’s pleasure is to enhance. (Unless you’re selfist.) Fixing wrong more important than having more bliss. There is too much wrong, while there are enough riches. Wealth acquisition should be our last priority. Distribution of entitlements and enforcement of permissions should be our priority. The ponds will eventually shrink to non-obscene size. Or maybe they will linger forever.
There are outlaw territories. Criminals will go there and operate. We can at least stop our criminals (corporations) from benefiting from the ever-actual negativity. A “negative flow” is a flow into evil hands. You can’t stop all negative flow, especially if you don’t know who’s criminal. You have to catch criminals. It’s not hard. Punishing corporations once you’ve caught them is another matter. To hit them so they feel it, you need penalties so quantitative that they seem absurd to the ignorant onlooker. We should stop acting to please ignorant onlookers.
Gov’s are necessary because only they can protect us from terrorism against the digital nervous system, and the other vital infrastructure. Only a gov is an uber-director who can make enterprise (and other gov’s) behave appropriately. Now we have inappropriate enterprise behavior. We need to have a dominant protective agency. Dominant is the key word. But for the sake of our theory, it needs to do infinitely more than an MS. Perhaps Darwinism has tainted Nozick’s conception of how beauty and truth develop. “Human beings have brains with one hundred trillion neuronal interconnections, each one possibly unique and exquisitely specific. And nature found us through randomly mutating structures and leaving the under-achievers in the tar pits. So we should do the same thing. Let people engage in any enterprise they want, randomly, and maybe we’ll reach justice!” But there is strong evidence that a directional (non-god) force is/was at work in history and evolution, as documented in John Landon’s World History and the Eonic Effect.
Our end-gov will have limitless flexibility and situationality, so as to allow for the fullest possible (moral) spectrum of enterprises. There is nothing intrinsically wrong with enterprise or change. But it must be change of (eventual) positive nature. Going where the aggregate rationally wants to go. With coherent systemicity, the aggregate should nearly always make rational choices.
The aggregate-rationality cannot be predicted by this peep, who has only known a randomly structured world. When the state is rational, only then will we know what aggregate rationality means. Maybe the ag-ra state will not want to provide welfare, but I don’t find this likely. Groups are not selfist, and know how to sacrifice for the cause of optimization and pain-minimization. Why rationality? It is the only approach to the heteronature of isdom that can ultimately harmonize desire, imagination, logistics, and ethics.
People should not be free to do wrong, and rights violations are not the only wrongs. Non-optimization is wrong. Homophilosophy is wrong, univocal thought. There is no final word on any matter. The heteronature of isdom can be rationalized by approaches from limitless points of view. The ultimate peep will never be born. There is always difference and moreness on the way.
Real freedom is freedom-to-do-right.
“I say capitalism is right.”
“Nothing is helping your argument.”
--we’ve never had a state of nature where pre-existing structural evil (pese) wasn’t present; peepsdom was polynatural from the evolution-history terminator onward.
--managed capitalism is now producing more misery than one would expect, to say the least, given the notions of progress and justice.
--no a priori reason exists to value X-change over all else.
--there is a posteriori suggestion that S-change, socialist meta-exchange, would lead to a minimal pain.
Capitalism has caused folk-sayings to take on telling forms:
“Don’t accept candy from strangers.”
“Don’t smoke pot unless you know who grew it.”
“Don’t bribe people to decide in your favor, to do things for you.”
Should parents be allowed to determine who their children marry? What they do? Who they are? For 18 years we are under control. Then we are as free as we know how to be. Or as free as our role prescribes. By role I mean life-totality. The garbage man is expected to have a different heteropotentiality than the exec.
The ed-system wants to control students, understandably. It is up to the educators to hand the students the keys to free thinking. It shouldn’t just be up to parents to hand children the keys to freedom and responsibility. The people should have a say. You should not let goons train/raise peeps, because goons do damage, and foolishness is learned and is hard to be cured of.
I feel like since I am sick I have the right to demand medicine from the government, or from whoever has it. Someone who owns a drug stockpile/factory is wasting it, when people who are dying need it. The factory shouldn’t decide who gets the drug. The people should decide, aggregately. Why should a factory determine the life and death fate of peeps in our society?
Inventions (such as the cure for AIDS) should become the property of peepsdom. Invention is something new in the world—but something new because of pre-existent forces and knowledges, not because of some “original” mind. You think you should retire now that you’ve found the cure for AIDS? Sorry, buddy. Keep at it. We need other cures as well.
Art cannot be done by committee, but if you have artists making it, a committee can decide what to do with it. As an artist I reserve the right to make whatever beauty/ugliness I feel like making. Can society demand, however, that I make some/any sort of art, and not fritter away my hours playing video games? What if gaming is a necessity for preparing to write book X? Tell the committee. Very, very unproductive methods may be used by the artist on her way to art. Consuming pizza, beer, and pot in large quantities may restructure one’s brain to let it reach the next level.
There are many goods. Not just enforcement of rights. Potentialities should be enforced. This is called mandatory school. The minimal state is in the “Low coherence” mode—there is very little method, except to counter madness. A high coherence state would evolve its own rationality. Rights will be violated if you let history take a “natural” course. This has been horribly proved in the results of the absence thus far of ag-ra states.
Sometimes it is good to be forced to do things. To go to creatively designed rehab for being a junkie. The MS is abusing the drug of freedom. You can have too much freedom. People will use freedom in unpredictable and immoral ways. Freedom-to-X means freedom-to-Y,Z,P,S. Freedom is chaos, when robots and sociopaths are concerned. Freedom is nature. We want culture. What is freedom? One is free, because one is not free to not take medication for one’s mental illness. People have the right to be helped for their own good. Observers may see more of your needs than you can. Do you believe in science? Let the social scientists implement their findings.
Free markets reward evil, not good. Entering a transaction with a slaveholder is fine? You can’t just look at capital transfer, X-change, and use it as the basis for rationalization. The principle of intelligence says our rights, like our creativity, are not limited. “If I’m doing something natural, like being a wolf, I’m not violating your rights.” We are not interested in X-change. It is natural, unconscious, animalistic, and chaotic. We are interested in patterned, rational re-organization of the parameters of our existence.
What of our behavior is natural, and what is human? During evolution, or during history? Why begin with an impossibility? The state of nature, where the world is held in common? This is the way things would go if alpha, alpha being impossible. What does it matter where you arrive if you begin with an absurdity? When did we become human? Apes have rights against each other that are violated and upheld. Any chimp knows it shouldn’t be assaulted by the bigger guy.
Markets reward power, not smarts. Smarts only insofar as the powerful can buy the best smarts. Nozick is secretly thinking some positive value such as smarts or virtue is the basis of capitalistic success. When it is pese. Pure power. People would not naturally take steps toward an MS because they’d be animalistically violating each others’ rights at the state of nature point. If they suddenly became human, they would acquire critical consciousness, and the desire for fully elaborate rights.
We’ll reward your randomly gotten (inherited) power with more power? Power tends to concentrate (in capitalism). Freedom is also ability, not just lack of impediment. The powerful have more freedom. They are right to do more things. They have more “rights.” The poor are dehumanized. Their rights are minimized. Power’s are maximized.
You are either human and artificially conceptual, or you are an animal and are naturally free. People have rights, according to us. Who is the most persuasive? According to us, love should be the highest good (love of peep or love of stamp collecting or whatever). Do we also have “wrongs”? “It would be right for you to teach me out of my wrongs.”
If an alien species, twice as intelligent and ethical, were to civilize us, what would we look like? We would want it to happen. If we believe that the good is the good, and better is better. The evil person or society is wrong, and has the super-right to be corrected. Super-rights are not self-enforced, but enforced by others. You cannot by definition enforce your own super-right. It is beyond you. And justice is a world-substance that either exists or does not. It currently does not exist. In evolution, did it exist? It is not “just” that wolves eat sheep. It is “blank.” The ever-present lack of value.