vrijdag 6 augustus 2010

Notities bij Pete Leeson on 'Self Governance'

erste slide: "Anarchy"

Everyday anarchy

- Most of the world, for most of its history
- More than half the world's government: "weak" or 'failed'
- International arena: between governments and between citizens
- "Pockets of anarchy" in developed countries

=> Governance: some system of rules/law and means of enforcement of facilitating social order
=> Government: one sort of organization to ensure governance => Legitimized monopoly of force in a territory
=> Studying anarchist order => 'kind of a side show' <=> it actually is important for understanding (austrian) economics.
=> Even though we live in a world with many governments: most of our interactions happen in anarchic situations.

Sideshow or necessity

- Mises on Menger's theory of money: quintessentially "praexeological theory", pointed to its "import ... for the elucidation of fundamental principles of praxeology and its methods of research" (1949: 402)

- Why? Tri-part emhasis on:
=> Human Purposiveness
=> Social Cooperation
=> Institutions

- Ricardian Law of Association

3 cases

- Easy case: effective self-government in the 'state's shadow'
=> Nearly all agree that it's possible

- Hard case: effective self government outside the 'state's shadow'
=> Nearly all agree this is impossible where pops are large, diverse, or require a SE solution to violence.

- Hardest case: self governing society that generates wealth
=> Nearly all agree this is impossible.

The Easy case: self-enforcing contracts

- Used when: government contract enforcement is absent/prohibitively costly.
- Mechanism: folk theorem => Unsophisticated
- Ex. Jewish Diamond traders; how neighbors settle disputes
- Limits: infinitely-repeated play; low time preference; low-cost communication (pop size and diversity); common idea about cheating; equal strength; can't create encompassing social order
- Bottom line: indispensable, but, alone, very limited (intra-group social cooperation) => conventional wisdom correct.

The Hard Case: Large Population and Social Diversity

- Used when: government contract enforcement is absent/prohibitively costly
- Mechanism: folk theorem + signaling => Sophisticated
- Ex: Logos/signage; lex Mercatoria; precolonial Africa, gangs
- Limits: infinitely repeated play; low time-preference; equal strength; can't create encompassing social order
- Botom line: facilitates inter-group cooperation => conventional wisdom mistaken

The Hard Case: Violence

- Used when: government protection absent
- Mechanism: violence; credit; other => sophistication depends.
- Ex: American West; feud, leges marchiarum
- Limits: depends... jurisdictional conflict; out-of-equilibrium escalation; other
- Bottom line: might need not make right => conventional wisdom mistaken

Rich and stateless?

- We have examples of fully self-governing societies: medieval Iceland, pirates, tribes, Somalia, etc.
- But how rich are/were they? Existence =/= efficiency.
- True! So what can we say about self-governance efficiency?

What doesn't shed light on the Hardest Case Question?

- Every country in the world has government (almost)
=> Every country in the world has tariffs: does that prove it's efficient? => No, it proves that it is in some peoples advantage.
- (Insert stateless society) is/was very poor
=> You aren't comparing the relevant institutions
- Private Institutions can't facilitate large volumes of trade
=> It's wrong => They can. A quarter of world GDP is caused by private institutions.
- (Insert N. American, W. European country)'s government can clearly facilitate more social cooperation than (insert stateless society)'s system of private governance
=> It doesn't tell us anything: you aren't comparing relevant institutions.

What are we left with?

- Compare the 'best' anarchy with 'the best' state; but compare the 50th 'best' anarchy with the '50th' best government.
- Somalia: pre and post anarchy: almost on every indicator: somalia has improved.
  1. Unqualified claims about the HCQ in either direction aren't going to be right
  2. Avoid the wrong question: why aren't any privately ordered societies richer?
  3. Ask the right question: compared to the relevant institutional alternative in this case: how does (might) private ordering fare?
  4. Comparing relevant alternatives, it seems that in many and perhaps most cases in the world at the moment, private ordening would fare well.
  5. We have much empirical and theoretical work left to do on the HCQ.
  6. Public choice is essential to aswering the HCQ.
  7. Studying anarchy isn't a luxury.

Geen opmerkingen: