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January 29, 2012


Foppe De Haan

Could you please explain to me
a. why it makes sense to you to posit a society with only a single rule and no obligations between persons (that you think worth mentioning)? and
b. why they would not understand the notion of a promise until bob first makes one, to then suddenly decide that they would feel obliged to keep it? (Or well, apparently they don't feel obliged, which is why you write that bob gives Wilt the right to beat him into submission if he doesn't "respect" wilt's exclusive right to that spot. But anyway.)

Yes, property relations have to do with exclusion, but there are ever more social ways to guarantee the honoring of such relationships (and the attendant obligations) than via crude threats to use force. Your parable ignores this completely, though..
Please consider reading David Graeber's "Manners, Deference and Private Property". Roughly the same topic, and, at least to me, fairly compelling.

A Facebook User

But he's the author. He, not you, decides what to write. What's important is that it be amusing, provocative or in some other way worthy of attention. Not that it meet a someone else's lawerly fault-finding (and I'm a lawyer).

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