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Monday, 11 September 2017

Libertarianism: a philosophical belief in Freedom

I'm still puzzling on disintegrating societies and the surge in both nationalism and personal liberalism. In my recent Alt-Left vs Alt-Right blog, I mentioned 2 basic concepts: duties and rights. In most societies, duties and rights are intertwined. In Western societies there is a decoupling between duties and rights, similar to a decoupling between economics and politics (my blog).

This decoupling became clear when I compared my youth with the present. In the 1960s and 70's, family life was still the cornerstone in villages. For many, work was in close vicinity. There was a clear connection between duties (work) and rights (income). Essentially, that situation was not that much different from ancient tribal life.

Since the late 20th century, several factors have eroded family life and many families are scattered over a province/state, a country or even spread over various nations. This caused a decoupling amongst family members. Almost simultaneously, another decoupling occurred between employers (work) and employees (income) as lifetime employment no longer existed. Both decouplings created a "direct" connection between governments and citizens. Citizens pay taxes (a duty) and expect much in return (rights).

Tribal life defines the Needs stage of civilizations (eg, food, shelter). The Wants stage - a.k.a. Consumerism - arrived around 1950 (eg, cars). Since (at least) the 21st Century, we are in the Beliefs stage of civilizations and we focus on one or more of the 7 Belief systems: Love, Money, Philosophy, Politics, Religion, Science and the Truth (eg, Alt-Left, Alt-Right, Greed, Liberalism, Narcissism, Nationalism, Political Islam, White Supremacy).

What I've called personal liberalism in earlier blogs, might actually be a belief in freedom. This philosophical belief is called Libertarianism and is related to Liberalism (my blogs). Although this belief has some - including extreme - sides (eg, Alt-Left vs Alt-Right), the general notion is that the government does not own its citizens. Hence, their concept of duties is minimal and is maximal towards rights.

This philosophical belief in freedom - a.k.a. Libertarianism - is responsible for a decoupling between duties (work) and rights (income) within society. The 3rd wave of the Technological Revolution of 1800-2100 may even prove them right. Massive unemployment due to Artificial Intelligent Robotics (my blogs) may well cause a decoupling between duties (no work) and rights (universal basic income). See my various blogs on Universal Basic Income.

The decoupling (i) between family members, (ii) between employer (work) and employee (income), (iii) between society (city, village) and burghers/citizens, and (iv) between government (taxes) and citizens (rights) is either unsustainable or a tipping point towards what life will be like in 2050. My 6 October 2016 blog - A brief narrative of the future - paints a similar, though slightly more gloomy, picture.

Me & Bobby McGee (1969) by Kris Kristofferson - artist, lyrics, video, Wiki-1, Wiki-2

Freedom is just another word for nothing left to lose


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