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Thursday, August 11, 2005

Spark

I always have trouble convincing people that what is wrong need not be illegal, and what is legal isn't necessarily right. Abortion? Morally wrong, according to my religion, although the way in which it is wrong has not been exactly determined. It is not necessarily unethical, and to illegalise something requires a rather high standard.

Oh, sure, it's illegal to drive without a seatbelt. People speak of the trade-off between personal liberties and the public good, but there can be no balance. They are different things. What these people really mean is that they enjoy civil liberties, and society enjoys productive workers, and the enjoyment is balanced. This is an application of utilitarian ethics.

Utilitarian ethics are wrong. My value system is better than your value system.

In the real world, we rights ethicists cannot balance liberty against safety because liberty is an absolute moral law, whereas safety is merely a nice warm feeling that we pursue within the bounds of others' rights.

Despite the potential for addictive drugs to destroy Western Civilization, they should not be illegal. For practical purposes, I would accept some restrictions. I'm all in favor of anti-drug propaganda. However, for practical purposes, many should be legalised.

Very few people abstain from drugs because of legality. Corporations and the IRS, however, must stay away. If all drugs were legalised tomorrow, Pfizer would start producing crack so efficiently that crackheads would no longer need to steal to support their habit; they would overdose before spending that much money. We would lower crime, increase tax receipts, and kill crackheads at an unprecedented pace.

I would also suggest that natural selection would favor those with self control, a positive direction for the future of our species.

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