Description

Garett Jones returns to the podcast to discuss his book, 10% Less Democracy: Why You Should Trust Elites a Little More and the Masses a Little Less.

During the 2016 presidential election, both Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders argued that elites were hurting the economy. But, drawing together evidence and theory from across economics, political science, and even finance, Garett Jones says otherwise. In 10% Less Democracy, he makes the case that the richest, most democratic nations would be better off if they slightly reduced accountability to the voting public, turning up the dial on elite influence.

To do this, Jones builds on three foundational lines of evidence in areas where he has personal experience. First, as a former staffer in the U.S. Senate, he saw how senators voted differently as elections grew closer. Second, as a macroeconomist, Jones knows the merits of “independent” central banks, which sit apart from the political process and are controlled by powerful insiders. The consensus of the field is that this detached, technocratic approach has worked far better than more political and democratic banking systems. Third, his previous research on the effects of cognitive skills on political, social, and economic systems revealed many ways in which well-informed voters improve government.

Discerning repeated patterns, Jones draws out practical suggestions for fine-tuning, focusing on the length of political terms, the independence of government agencies, the weight that voting systems give to the more-educated, and the value of listening more closely to a group of farsighted stakeholders with real skin in the game—a nation’s sovereign bondholders. Accessible to political news junkies while firmly rooted and rigorous, 10% Less Democracy will fuel the national conversation about what optimal government looks like.

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  • Here are the top arguments I know: Explicit social contract You have explicitly consented to have some people rule you Hypothetical social contract Something about your behavior suggests that you have consented to have some people rule you, or you would have consented had you been asked Democratic authority If enough people agree that X should be done, then X should be done Consequentialism We should allow some people to rule others in order to prevent a disaster

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  • The “Tax Honesty” movement has demonstrated a few things to a lot of people.  To cover a lot with a few words, I’ll put it this way:  The IRS breaks its own rules in order to rob us through deceit. Some people (Irwin Schiff, for example) have suffered because they attempted to protect themselves from the rule-breakers.  There is now a theory popular among liberty-minded people that the government is too corrupt and powerful for anyone to succeed in an effort like Irwin Schiff’s.  There is also some good evidence showing this theory to be wrong.  It’s available at Peter Hendrickson’s website, losthorizons.com. I think that a lot of bureaucrats feel and believe that they are helping society.  This leaves them open to consider fixing situations in which their bureaucracy is breaking its own rules.  And let’s face it, there are some rules that can actually help liberty.  Perhaps the loads of evidence that Hendrickson has on his site can be explained by the presence of such “good-hearted” individuals in the bowels of the IRS. In any case, if you can, please entertain the possibility that the US Income Tax is not being administered honestly.  Consider that maybe, just maybe, in the gargantuan tangle of words called “Title 26,” the legal meaning of the law as it applies to most people is not coercive at all.  Maybe, if it were properly applied, the government would be a nuisance like neighbors who let their dogs poop on your lawn, instead of a nuisance like cancer in your lungs.  It could be true.  I think it is true, and I think that failing to follow all the twists and turns that Hendrickson uncovered to see for yourself that it is true kind of justifies you still being enslaved to a government that steals from you in order to cause havoc all over the planet in a massive deception that justifies its existence. If we want to honor the goodness in all people, including those who have been tricked into serving evil, we can do so by understanding the rules they think they should be following, and using them to protect ourselves from enslavement.

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  • This will be a general discussion to share tips and tricks to survive conventional Keynesian Economics Lessons in university.

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  • Hey Everyone, I’m new to Liberty.me but not to the Liberty Movement. I was paying attention to it in 2008 and finally drank the kool-aid in 2012. I’m posting here because I’ve been bootstrapping the development of a legislation alert app and I am hoping that it helps grassroots movements in shutting down bad legislation and getting good candidates elected. The basic idea is to connect our nation’s outspoken political activists (10% of the population roughly) with the remaining interested bystanders (about 49% of the population, representing people who care but prefer to remain anonymous) so that their combined leverage can shut down bad legislation or help get good legislation passed. Opinion data on pending bills is filterable by district and can be used to hold representatives accountable to the will of their constituency. Come election time, users can also easily compare their private voting history with a representative’s public voting record in order to make a much more informed vote than normal. There are two types of accounts: Mobilizers: These are public accounts that can be followed by other users and can post alerts on pending State and Federal legislation. This account type logs in via web browser and requires an invite code currently. Apptivists: These are private accounts that follow public accounts and vote on the bills they are alerted to by the Mobilizers. This account type logs in via a simple phone app and is open to anyone with an iOS device (Android coming soon!). Much more detailed info on the project can be found by scrolling down the homepage of our website: http://www.apptivism.us We’ve recently launched our MVP of the application and I’ve set up an invite code that can be used by people from Liberty.me if anyone here would like to register as a Public Mobilizer account. As this is my attempt to help promote liberty in our country, we have decided to make Apptivism free to use for both account types. Also, this app is meant to work together with other social media services like FB and Twitter. It’s not a replacement. That’s what Liberty.me is for. 😉 If anyone here has any questions, I’d love to answer them and I’d love to get feedback on the whether this type of system is something that could be useful to the liberty community. Thanks in advance! Cheers! seth PS: Here’s a brief video explaining the system: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ah4bJG5NNks

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  • Does this list have anything else that could be added to it? The goal is to have a checklist that could be used to check any article on the topic. I would guess most people on this site are aware that arbitrarily raising the cost of labor isn’t the best way to help workers.

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