Sunday, November 6, 2011

A Faceless Bureaucrat and a Pragmatarian

Continuing with the theme of responses to pragmatarianism I thought I'd share a very reasonable discussion that I've been having with a "Faceless Bureaucrat"...A Liberal Solves the Budget Deficit.  It's quite possibly the longest online discussion that I've had with somebody on  the topic of pragmatarianism.

Hmmm...I've been noticing that lately I've been using the word "reasonable" quite a bit.  Perhaps I'm hoping that for some reasonable reason reasonable people like to google for the word "reasonable".  Then they'll find this blog and say...hmmm...pragmatarianism is very reasonable.

Unfortunately I can't think of any reasonable reasons why reasonable people might search for the word "reasonable".  Especially since I've never searched for the word "reasonable" myself.  Well...I did search for "reasonable doubt".

Perhaps the more reasonable somebody is the more happy they are with the status quo?  But just how reasonable could somebody be if they are willing to accept that this political system is as good as it gets?  We're always in the middle ages.  What percentage of forward progress is a direct result of people genuinely doubting the value of mainstream thought?

The other day John Stewart said..."I’m beginning to see why our motto is ‘in God we trust,’ because god knows we can’t trust in [congress]"  Would John Stewart ever say..."God knows we can't trust in congress but I'll be damned before I'd trust my fellow taxpayers"?  Just how reasonable is it to consider other taxpayers unreasonable?

Perhaps pragmatarianism is based on the idea that god helps them who help themselves.  I trust the Faceless Bureaucrat to allocate his individual taxes and I trust Andrew Cohen to allocate his individual taxes and I trust Noah to allocate his individual taxes and I trust Paul Krugman to allocate his individual taxes and I trust Jeffrey Sachs to allocate his individual taxes.  Even though these people might consider other taxpayers to be unreasonable...I'd still place them in the reasonable camp.

In the unreasonable camp?  How about the people from the Jersey Shore reality show?  Or perhaps the Kardashians?  

What percentage of taxpayers fall into the respective camps?  The answer would depend entirely on your definition of reasonable.  The real question is though...how much BAD could unreasonable people do simply by directly allocating their taxes towards public GOODS?

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