Comment: Thanks, Treg, and no thanks.

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Thanks, Treg, and no thanks.

Actually, I was just hoping for a good argument/discussion, not a homework assignment. I thank you for the trouble you took making the list, but genetics, psychology, sociology and suchlike do not interest me. Philosophy and economics -- the reasons why individuals make their individual choices -- do. I did study both the hard and soft behavioral sciences in college (some 40 years ago), but found them fatally infected with determinism. I refute determinism. I choose to believe, instead, in free will. Is that choice pre-determined by my genes, upbringing, socio-economic status, or some evolutionary process? If it is, then how can I argue with it? And how could anyone prove it OR disprove it, they likewise being the product of some deterministic process? On the other hand, maybe we really do have free will, and all the deterministic theories are just a steaming pile of crap. That's my story, and I'm sticking with it.

As regards the political ramifications of such matters, I reason thusly: I can get along with other people just fine without using coercion aggressively. If I can make that choice and hold to it -- then anyone can. It's just a matter of persuading them that certain choices work better than others for getting the things they want. Trading and other voluntary associations work better -- for everyone -- than using coercion. You want to hear a jaw-dropping cognitive leap, here it is: if I don't need "government," no one needs government. That's even more grandiose than Ron Paul saying, "Government should NEVER have a right to do anything that YOU can't do." But I think he and I are on the same page.

Recommended reading: The Most Dangerous Superstition by Larken Rose