Bryan Caplan has responded to my recent post on liberalism and utilitarianism. I agree with his first criticism: First, if "Liberalism is what happens when you are optimizing for a safe environment, and illiberalism is what happens when you optimize for thriving in an unsafe environment," are we talking about selfish optimization or social optimization? If the former, then how does being rich make caring about outsiders "selfishly optimal"? If the latter, then it sounds like utilitarianism requires illiberalism in unsafe environments. Mea culpa. I unthinkingly adopted the term "optimizing", which was used by Scott Alexander. I should have used something like "operating". Thus militarism is what you
Scott Sumner considers the following as important: Growth: Consequences
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