[LMB] General rules for Governments

Pouncer pouncer at aol.com
Sat Jun 19 23:22:38 BST 2021


WILLIAM A WENRICH

 > 2.All laws were made in the past for different circumstances and
 > are never perfectly applicable to the present.

In the lag between the need (or a corrupt desire) for a law being
identified and the law itself being published, the circumstances
will have changed.

The more general problem with "general rules" is that they ARE,
as described, "general". There is brought into the social mind
some general, typical, normal, modal, most-frequently-found,
average,  Procrustean Bed of a circumstance and then the
government attempts to deal, by force, with the myth society
created for itself. Which many, repeatedly, point out tends
to be hard on the misfits.

Those many less often complain of the burden shouldered by the
government to appraise fitness of all sorts; to assess fines
or award subsidies in order to accommodate natural dys-fits;
then chase down and punish deliberate rule breakers. Consider
the amount of time and effort a public school spends on
such tasks.  Socialization, they call it.

In canon, the Beta Colony Population Control Board deals
with the "Average" family of 2-point-something offspring
by awarding some individuals a "third child variance".  Each
adult citizen is entitled and expected to be progenitor to
one child.  And the PCB insists on each progenitor identifying
a "Co-Parent".  So a population unit to the PCB is a
statistical concept with two certified/qualified adults
and two-point-something minor-children (required to be
educated, socialized, etc.)  First problem: maybe an
original co-parent feels it's unfair to be asked to assist
in raising a partner's "awarded third" child.  *You helped
with mine, I helped with your first, but I'm NOT on the
hook for your second!*  Next what happens when three or
four adults decide to form a home and enjoy having one
to two kids around -- leaving the PCB and Betan society
two kids short? Then we have the Dubaurer situation:
he's been mentally disabled due to nerve disrputor, BUT
he has great genes, still hale family members, and retains
his constitutional right to one genetic decendent. Now the
PCB has to find or approve two co-parents-by-proxy for
the one progenitor...   The Betan government has taken upon
itself a HUGE administrative task (and commensurate tax
burden)  that most cultures can safely leave to individuals
to work out for themselves, for free.  (Or for the
cost of mere heartache -- which cost Betans, like
Cordelia, are not spared even with the PCB in overwatch.)

In general, the general rule is a bad rule; only
redeemed by dire necessity and in comparison to violent
and costly anarchy. In the frequent cases where chaos
is not terribly painful or costly, we should try to
avoid such "general" evils.  IMHO, YMMV, ETC.

-- 
This email has been checked for viruses by AVG.
https://www.avg.com



More information about the Lois-Bujold mailing list