I’m Gonna Plagiarize Ed Lopez’s Philosophy Here, Because It’s Mine Too

Lynne Kiesling

In the comments on Will Wilkinson’s post to which I just linked, Ed Lopez offers a statement of philosophy that expresses my own beliefs more clearly and eloquently than I am capable of doing:

Your post is why I consider myself a philosophical anarchist. I would love to have a government to which I could in good conscience consent. But I know of no political institutional arrangements that have not led to plunder or otherwise morally illegitimate acts of state. On the other hand, governments can be pretty handy–not for economic reasons like roads or defense, which are better left to markets, but as focal points for organizing public interaction in beneficial ways. I don’t expect perfection from markets, so I do support even imperfect governments if they have mechanisms for enforcing things like anti-corruption norms. A government that prosecutes corrupt government officials is better than one that doesn’t. Our big problem is that fewer and fewer people give a crap about principle and want to outsource responsibility to the state.