Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Quick public service announcements

1. Methdological individualism does not give you license to get upset when I use the first person plural. We can disagree with the merits of what it does say - I think it leads people who misunderstand it to fetishize microfoundations. But one thing it doesn't say is that the concept of "we" is illegitimate.

2. Nothing makes me think you're not very intelligent and not worth talking to faster than when you call me a statist or a proponent of central planning. I'm serious - I'm getting really sick of this. Stop.

3. I don't always talk about government on this blog. More often than not it enters the conversation when my commenters bring it up. Don't think when I'm talking about certain characteristics of the market I'm trying to make a case for the government.


  1. DK,

    I thought this be as good as any to say that I enjoy your work and honesty. I see you all over at Murphy's site, coordination problem, econlog, mises forums here and there plus others. I just wanted to say that I appreciate all your input into the discussions and comments. Though I dont agree with you on many things, I find your effort thought provoking and intellectually honest. No, I dont think your a statist or a central planner though I think the implications of somethings can sometimes lead that way.

    Back to being a forum cruiser who does not comment much.

    Dave B.

  2. There is a "we". It's a bunch of individual people.

    Well, of course Daniel. I was being overly simplistic. Of course there is a we. What I meant to make obvious to you was that there is no "shared" pool of resources by which "we" exercise control. There is my property, there is your property, and there is my aunt Lucy's property, etc. But it's misleading to parse questions asking "What ought we do to about X?" when it's implying that all property is up to the decision of everyone.

    If you want to make a philosophical argument about property in general; if you want to make a claim of intersubjective conditions of property - then it is reasonable to say things like "we" or to imply that we are talking about all property for all of us.

    That whole idea is what is at the root of your problem.

    Come on Mattheus. You and I have interacted long enough that you ought to be above this. Raise concerns, not hackles.

    You're right, we have interacted for a long time. Could it be I was joking with you? ;)

    And come on, you should still see the parallel. You objected to Roberts' phrase and now we're talking about what "we" should do with "our" property.

    All in good fun, dude. I'm just pulling your leg.


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