Home › Forums › Discuss Freedom’s Progress: The History of Political Thought, Part I › Contracts have same problems as Constitutions? › Reply To: Contracts have same problems as Constitutions?
I am looking forward to any thoughts you have!
I feel I need to emphasize that all these undesirable effects, and the State itself, all originate from simple, straightforward economic motivations.
Libertarians have a tendency to put forward solutions that are ineffective against such fundamental and intrinsic forces.
For example, “education is the answer”. “If only people really understood”.
Or another example, “dispel the illusion”: “If only people would just withdraw their consent”.
These solutions are ineffective against the much more fundamental and powerful economic motivations that create the undesirable affects and the vicious cycles that amplify them.
I have a hunch why such solutions are commonly put forward by libertarians. On Tom Wood’s private Facebook group, I recently conducted a poll asking everyone their Myers-Briggs personality type.
The results were not surprising. Basically, the INTJ personality type occurred more often than all the other personality types combined. And almost all of the remaining entries were some variation of the NT personality type. This is striking, because INTJs comprise only about 1% of the general population, and NTs overall less than 13%. The personality demographic of libertarians is OVERWHELMINGLY skewed toward this type, as compared to the general population.
There are four core Myers-Briggs types:
NT – tend to organize their life around internal mental models of reality / ideological frameworks, and assume it is natural for everyone else to do the same thing. INTJs in particular tend to take this to an extreme level.
NF – tend to be guided much more by personal empathy and intuition
SJ – tend to be guided more by duty and responsibility
SP – tend to be guided more by social intuition
SJs and SPs combined comprise about 75% of the general population,
NFs tend to regard NTs as brilliant engimas, while SJs and SPs tend to regard NTs as somewhat naive idealists.
These dynamics lead to misunderstanding and conflict, based on unrealistic and uncharitable assessments of other peoples’ thinking and behavior.
When NTs observe that other people are NOT guided by an internal mental framework, they have an unfortunate tendency to conclude that those people are stupid or evil. (Is it any wonder that libertarians are seen as condescending and unrealistic at best, dangerous ideologues at worst?)
My proposal is to find solutions that get to the root cause of the vicious cycles — namely, solutions that leverage economic motivations — and try to focus individual and political action in that direction. Educational efforts can be a strong support here, but are not enough on their own to create the sustained behavioral changes that will break the vicious cycles.
For example, I have always been thrilled that Tom does so many “bonus episodes” on entrepreneurship. This strikes at the heart of the attitude of subservience inherent in the “money for work” employment paradigm. There are many other types of efforts along these lines that could bring great results, and could also broaden the personality base of the movement.