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Re: [bostonatheists] On the curriculum at Cedarville University in Ohio:

From: Jim H.
Sent on: Sunday, February 3, 2013 9:05 AM
It's pretty obvious that moving a function from government to private, for-profit business in no way makes it suddenly free. A perfect example is the US Army's cost to keep a soldier in a war theater for a year versus the cost of a mercenary from a military contractor like Xe (formerly Blackwater). If the libertarian wing of the Republican Party ever succeeds in eliminating Medicare, they will find out how incredibly expensive full medical care for the elderly is when purchased from private, for-profit insurance companies.

Jim Hollomon

On Sun, Feb 3, 2013 at 5:15 AM, David M <[address removed]> wrote:
I think we are all against the government doing things inefficiently. Fortunately, there are many things that the government can do efficiently. Health care is a great example. Yet there are still very many libertarians opposed to the government replacing the inefficient insurance companies.

The inefficiency aspect is irrelevant anyway to most flavors of libertarianism. If the government had 99% efficiency, that would make no difference to the libertarians who consider taxation immoral--and why should it? Personally, I consider the efficiency talk to usually be rationalization and post hoc justifications -- similar to when the religious right claims that abortions lead to breast cancer or when organic food advocates start claiming non-organic food as the cause of all illness. We even see this when atheists make ridiculous claims like blaming religion for all our wars or insisting that there are no religious charities that do genuine good without proselytizing. Instead of realizing the highly subjective nature of our acceptance of particular political perspectives and the merits of opposing views, it is easy to fall into the misconception that our politics follow logically from the data around us and that unresolved questions will eventually be resolved in a way that supports our perspective (such as bad health outcomes that *must* result from abortion because god hates abortion since it is so evil).

When people are convinced of the ethical goodness of a political or economic view, they tend to start seeing that view as also the best solution to problems, whether or not it is actually an optimal, or even workable solution. They can also fall into thinking that any other approach would lead to very bad outcomes. This is not to say that all of us are doing this all of the time. Personally, I believe that we all do this a lot and I try to monitor myself. This is very hard to keep in check in the heat of the moment.

The 'social justice' concept was already in play in the discussion, so I don't see why I would need to define it.

On Feb 2, 2013, at 1:55 PM, Scott <[address removed]> wrote:

>> Are libertarians against social justice?
>
> Please define "social justice" -- it's too broad a topic for a discussion.
>
>> I know they are opposed to the
>> government doing the social justice.
>
> I'm opposed to the government doing things so inefficiently that they do
> more harm than good, not social justice.
>
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