Victus Spiritus


The Cage Guards against the Tiger only if We're Outside it's Bars

03 Aug 2010

[caption id="attachment_4775" align="aligncenter" width="468" caption="or if the tigers are outside the cage"][/caption]

Rules are wonderful constructs to keep us all acting in a predictable manner. There are rules at school, there are rules at work, there are rules on the web, there are a shit ton of rules for ownership, and there are rules for how to enforce other rules. Society works because we consciously follow all it's rules all the time, right? Probably not.

The Public Good

The spirit of the law (motivation) is for the public good, or at least that's my interpretation*. A majority of people understand and embrace a shared sense of values, but not at the expense of (non-violent) minorities.

A handful of rules make sense to each of us. They harmonize with our personal sense of right and wrong, and these are the ideals we embrace and choose to live by. The rest are at best reasonable guidelines, and at worst trample individual freedom. Unenforceable rules erode public trust in a common sense of justice. So why does each culture construct a legal system that defies any single expert's ability to comprehend and interpret? The half lives of social rules and legislation are ill suited to modern cultures which are fragmented with diverse values. Don't get me wrong, some old rules are our finest, but societies novelty filter for making new rules is out of whack.

the hacker's abstraction of law

My hypothesis: the smallest intersection of rules necessary to maintain a functioning society is all that law should be. Rules can never replace reason when it comes to the nuances of lifestyle choice. The rest of the rules are noise and a tax on our society. A tax we can ill afford to pay.

Those who wield legal authority to cage personal freedom are no different than those who abuse the liberty of others outside of law.

*= what public good means to me: peaceful coexistence with maximum individual liberty

One of the most attractive aspects of startups to me is their ability to disrupt the financial pillars of old thinking. It's one thing if Apple's market cap exceeds that of Exxon (not yet), but a real "magical and revolutionary" event would be the fragmentation of financial markets.