A conversation on Quora.com:
My Question: "I think that insisting on fairness is toxic in intimate relationships. Is it a safe foundation for societies?"
One of the Answers, from Dave Davidson, Biologically founded Philosophy (Answered Oct 31, 2017):
There is a large difference between an intimate relationship, like pair bonding, and the social structures that reside outside the family. I agree that stringently trying to determine fairness in an intimate relationship is not the way to go. But a healthy governing social structure will possess fairness as a main value.Fairness in family dynamics is one thing but if you don’t have a fair society, your family gets to be ruled by a bunch of dangerous and cunning apes. Fairness in society is expressed by how the government physically intervenes among its constituents with the use of laws which have been established by the constituents. A law applies equally to all citizens.
At last, someone who grasps the actual intent of the question! As you say, it is dangerous to trust one’s government, since there is no fixed person to trust. But a social relationship devoid of trust relies on the "completeness" of constitutional law — every possible abuse must be anticipated and explicitly prohibited. Even if this could succeed, it is then subject to reinterpretation "as times change", so you have to trust the Supreme Court (or equivalent), which brings us back to the same requirement, albeit at a more manageable level.Common law, on the other hand, acknowledges the necessity of trusting SOMEone, and puts the onus on the "reasonable man" (judge) to be trustworthy. It also fails, of course, but it makes abuses harder to hide; hence all the chopped-off heads in England’s history.
I don’t have a solution, but I’m starting to get pretty disillusioned with constitutional law.
To form a healthy constitutional government, I think you are right about inhibiting abuse with strong oversight and the need to possess a great awareness at the point of creating the templates. But an adequate constitutional government will only really be complete in a situation where all the constituent families, basically, know each other.
You are right about disillusionment. Constitutional law can come into your space and physically force you to alter your behavior. Trustworthy is a hard row to hoe. You start with family and then extend it by observing the behavioral patterns of others and you integrate by paralleling the necessity of your agenda. Trust is a gut feeling which all organic life applies to physical interaction. Getting to where the trust needed for governance becomes acceptable can only be accomplished by the laws which are established and observations of their implementation.
I think we have a problem. The way I see it, this big government system won’t work. We were made to be governed at the tribal level with around 200 people. The dynamics of the growth of population and resources has allowed us to jury rig systems up to this point, but we are now where population and a complex ability which is supremely toxic make my progeny grasp a very grim future. I know this is pessimistic and even though my belief is such, I also feel that it is not my place to give up hope.
Me: Well said. May I quote you? I’m teaching a class on "What Will the Future be Like?" and next week’s topic is "Society".
Dave: Thank you. It’s an honor.