In surveys libertarians “didn’t care about morality. They scored low on everything. Then when we added the liberty items, through the roof. So they have a one foundation morality.” – Johathan Haidt, Libertarian Morality.
Reason.com has a short article about a long video of NYU social psychologist Jonathan Haidt who says “Morality isn’t just about stealing and killing and honesty, it’s often about menstruation, and food, and who you are having sex with, and how you handle corpses.”
He argues “that our concern over these victimless behaviors is rooted in our biology.”
But the non-aggression principle that tells us nobody has the right to initiate force, intimidation or fraud against others is not the basis for human morality. It’s the other way around; human morality is the basis for the non-aggression principle.
So isn’t Haidt confusing morality (personal convictions) with ethics (social interactions)? For example, a Christian libertarian might morally oppose gay marriage but would never accept ethically that anyone, including government, should force that moral belief on gay people.
Others might reject Haidt’s survey and/or biology conclusions.
Reason-based libertarians might accept this basic (i.e., “lay simple”) understanding of Ayn Rand’s Objectivist philosophy.
Human morality requires being “human.” Being “human” means being alive; otherwise you’re just rotting meat.
Hence, human morality means that which tends to promote human life is moral; anything tending to degrade or destroy human life is immoral.
Now note that a live, functioning human being, by nature, consists of one brain embedded in one body. Since this condition is “right” for human beings it gives rise to the concept of “human rights.”
This means that as a normal live human being it’s your brain that naturally controls your body. Your brain cannot naturally control another’s body nor can another’s brain naturally control yours.
That’s why, even though individuals may voluntarily cooperate with one another in chosen situations, no amount of cooperative group effort causes any individual to stop being an individual.
It’s only through coercion, intimidation and fraud perpetuated by one against another that can make one individual’s brain control another individual’s actions.
Thus the non-aggression principle is based on human life and becomes the moral basis for all ethical human interactions.
Now everyone: have fun ripping this apart for reasons of defining nuance, propagating arguments, offering rejections, or most likely of all, to create cleverly worded expositions for justifying unjustifiable rationalizations for committing coercion against others.
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