Interesting discussion re a new book from Billy Christmas, whom I also published in Libertarian Papers: “The Possibility of Thick Libertarianism” (2016), the abstract of which is:
“Abstract: The scope of libertarian law is normally limited to the application of the non-aggression principle (NAP), nothing more and nothing less. However, judging when the NAP has been violated requires not only a conception of praxeological notions such as aggression, but also interpretive understanding of what synthetic events count as the relevant praxeological types. Interpretive understanding—or verstehen—can be extremely heterogeneous between agents. The particular verständnis taken by a judge has considerable moral and political implications. Since selecting a verständnis is pre-requisite to applying the NAP, the NAP itself cannot tell us which one we ought morally to choose. Therefore the application of the NAP calls on moral and political considerations outside of the NAP itself. Since some of these are more consistent with an endorsement of the NAP than others, libertarianism is not a “thin” commitment to the NAP alone, but a “thick” commitment to the NAP and other supporting moral and political considerations.”
by Sarah SkwireI recently had the chance to sit down with Jacob Levy and Aeon Skoble to talk about Billy Christmas’s new book Property and Justice: A Liberal Theory of Natural Rights. Its carefully drawn argument about the connections among property rights, justice, and natural rights make for complex reading, but Property and Justice is a book that comes alive in the discussion.