To contrast with Bernstein and Sinhababu...here's Aretae on politics.
0. Everyone is wrong a lot, independent of IQ. The more complicated the system, the more likely you are to be wrong. The bigger the system, the more complicated. The economy of a country is (the) ultimate big system.
1. Feedback determines the quality of the system. How many times you've fixed it.
2. The bigger the system, the more stability matters in the system.
3. Even if you could get the rules right at a point in time, the people gaming the rules have more money, time, and motivation than the people making the rules. Your rules will be effectively gamed...for all sets of rules.
4. THEREFORE...All top-down rule-sets are value-destroying...and the larger the polity it applies to, the more value-destroying.
0. Political actors are just people. Treat them like people, not angels.
1. Political actors need to remain in power to accomplish objectives (just like people need to remain in power to accomplish objectives).
2. Therefore, in order to pursue ANY goal in politics, remaining in power becomes a major concern...usually eclipsing the long-term goal in short-term importance.
3. It's always the short term.
4. Political actors are ALL primarily concerned with staying in power. FWIW, this is true to a lesser extent of managers at any level of any organization. The option to jump to control in another organization mitigates this, but only slightly.
0. For any policy, there are winners, losers, and deadweight losses.
1. Policies that have concentrated winners, and distributed losers are preferred in all political decisionmaking.
2. Monopoly-granting (Oligopoly, Monopsony, whatever...all the same thing), direct or indirect, is the best way to create concentrated winners, and distributed losers.
3. The government's primary activity is creating monopoly, and passing it off as consumer protection.
Bruce Bueno de Mesquita + Falkenstien&Hanson inspired:
0. 90-odd percent of social value is status/envy value, not absolute goods.
1. Nominal political systems (Democracy or Moldbug) are irrelevant. The real question is the actual power-structure, that is not subject to design.
2. Real political systems are the question of what supporters are needed to actually control the country.
3. Long term political success comes from minimizing the number of people in the coalition you need support from to run the country...and screwing everyone not in the coalition.
4. Best known path to avoiding screwage by elites: Small states, direct democracy, near-zero executive power. See Switzerland.
0. High income is positively correlated with all positive outcomes.
1. Income is exchangeable for all positive outcomes.
2. If you wish to make people better off, increase their incomes.
3. Increase incomes = improve GDP growth per capita = increase innovation
4. Known paths to increased innovation: Strong physical property rights, Low taxes, general low regulation. Low tariffs. Low transaction costs. Strongly suspected paths: low IP controls (innovation = ideas having sex).
5. Government can do nothing proactive more than protect property rights to increase growth. All other actions are (a) detrimental to growth and therefore (b) detrimental to general welfare.
1. Government is necessarily incapable of solving problems.
2. Government will necessarily be about the people in government maintaining power, whether or not there are elections.
3. Government action will necessarily be primarily about monopoly privilege.
4. The ONLY path to good government is decreasing the size and power of central actors.
5. Government action that results in good outcomes for citizens is limited to property rights enforcement.
Formalism: Democracy is a bad thing that results in bad outcomes. Neo-monarchism is better.
Aretae: Government is a bad thing that result in bad outcomes. There are NO POSSIBLE good choices inside the government paradigm. There are no possible paths of rolling back the government paradigm in existing states. Concentrated power solutions (Monarchy) tend to be even worse than distributed power ones.