David Brin

From Critiques Of Libertarianism
Jump to: navigation, search

A renowned SF author, physicist and futurist, Brin is a 2010 fellow of the Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies. He has written a great deal on how libertarians need to face historical realities of societies and give up on some of their ideology.

Links

American Exceptionalism... versus what has made America exceptional [More...]
David Brin points out that counter-merchantilist US government policies of the Pax Americana have created unprecedented economic development around the world and a vast reduction in warfare and violence.
Class War and the Lessons of History [More...]
David Brin points out that class war has always been occurring according to Adam Smith, and that the founders of the US were levelers, creating institutions that broke up concentrations of wealth. Progressive leveling can work again.
Diamond Shaped Society
The diamond shaped society is a term coined by Charles Wright Mills and revived by David Brin for majority middle-class societies in the first world. Libertarianism, being conservative and aristocratic, is harmful to the diamond shaped society.
Disputation Arenas
David Brin identifies science, democracy, the justice system and fair markets as accountability forums where we benefit from non-violent resolution of disagreements. He proposes a fifth which already exists (as culture) but was later instantiated on the internet as Wikipedia.
Disputation Arenas: Harnessing Conflict and Competitiveness for Society's Benefit [More...]
David Brin identifies science, democracy, the justice system and fair markets as accountability forums where we benefit from non-violent resolution of disagreements. He proposes a fifth which already exists (as culture) but was later instantiated on the internet as Wikipedia.
Is Libertarianism Fundamentally about Competition? Or about Property? [More...]
David Brin attempts to find common ground between liberals and libertarians by stressing the value of competition. He concludes that: "today's libertarians are (I grieve to say it) in-effect quite mad."
Liberals, you must reclaim Adam Smith [More...]
David Brin denounces modern libertarians and their selective citation of Adam Smith. Brin calls for progressive reforms to bring capitalism back to Smithian competition.
Libertarianism: Finding a new Path [More...]
David Brin lambastes libertarians for a wide variety of ideological and moral failures: a collection of roughly a dozen articles.
Models, Maps and Visions of Tomorrow [More...]
A discussion of political axes and why most (including the Nolan Chart) are wrong. Part 1/4 of David Brin's Political Totemism and the Danger of Metaphors.
Pondering Pax Americana and the government shut-down [More...]
David Brin points out that the enormous US defense spending which created the Pax Americana allowed other nations to spend less on military and more on education and development.
[ The Grand American Consensus] [More...]
Finding consensus for progressive, not radical, change. Part 3/4 of David Brin's Political Totemism and the Danger of Metaphors.
The Other Foe of Free Enterprise [More...]
David Brin points out that the true common foe of our diamond shaped society is aristocracy. Part 4/4 of Political Totemism and the Danger of Metaphors.
The Transparent Society: Will Technology Force Us to Choose Between Privacy and Freedom? (book)
_placeholder_
The Ultimate Goal [More...]
Social goals and social contracts: progressivism redescribed. Part 2/4 of David Brin's Political Totemism and the Danger of Metaphors.

Quotations

[...] the counter-mercantilist pattern imposed by Marshall's unusual Pax Americana favored transferring low level, labor intensive industries (e.g. textiles) en masse to poor regions around the globe in a cascade sequence that uplifted, successively, Germany and Japan, then Korea and Taiwan, then Malaysia and Singapore and so on, until right now this program of "foreign aid via WalMart" is raising up more than a billion people in China and India at the same time.
David Brin, "American Exceptionalism... versus what has made America exceptional"
Consider four marvels of our age -- science, democracy, the justice system and fair markets. In each case the participants (scientists, litigants, politicians and capitalists) are driven by selfish goals. That won't change; not till we redefine human nature. But for years, rules have been fine-tuned in each of these fields of endeavor, to reduce cheating and let quality or truth win much of the time. By harnessing human competitiveness, instead of suppressing it, these "accountability arenas" nourished much of our unprecedented wealth and freedom. The four arenas aren't always fair or efficient! A good theory, law or commercial product may flounder, or else face many trials before prevailing. But remember that organic systems needn't be efficient, only robust. Likewise, our core institutions have to keep functioning despite individual incompetence, or the most everlasting human temptation-- to cheat. In achieving this, the four old accountability arenas have done pretty well by us, so far.
David Brin, Disputation Arenas: Harnessing Conflict and Competitiveness for Society's Benefit
Alas, today's libertarians are (I grieve to say it) in-effect quite mad. They worship unlimited private property, even though it was precisely the failure mode that crushed freedom in 99% of human cultures. And they rage against a system that in general resulted in vastly more wealth, freedom and more libertarians than any other. This is a quasi-religious idolatry. It makes them complicit allies of the enemies of competition. It makes them murderers of the thing that they should love.
David Brin , "Is Libertarianism Fundamentally about Competition? Or about Property?"
Without question, Pax Americana was the best and least hated of all grand paxes. [...] the U.S. defense umbrella has, since 1945, allowed most nations to spend far, far lower fractions of national income on warriors than at any time in history, allowing them to divert more to education and development. Look up the stats and be amazed! And Steven Pinker's proof that violence has plummeted under the era of Pax Americana.
David Brin, "Pondering Pax Americana and the government shut-down"