James Leroy Wilson's blog

Friday, July 15, 2005

Aristocracy and the Next Justice

Vache Folle on the judiciary and aristocracy:

She will have been ruthlessly ambitious, and she will believe in the depths of her soul that she deserves the rewards she has won by virtue of her having “merit”. This gives her the sense that she is fit to impose her views and her will on her less “meritorious” conspecifics. She will have been trained to “think like a lawyer”, ie to reduce every issue to a set of narrow categories and to strip them of all substance. In sum, she will be an utter tool.
[...]
The absence of a public-spirited aristocracy means that all positions of trust in this country are held by men of dubious character who lack the courage and independence to resign in protest over wrongdoing. The military is led by careerists who need their jobs and who will not resign over a matter of honor. Judges treasure their positions over principles, and bureaucrats at every level of government depend on their government salaries too much to permit them to act in the public interest.

It will take decades to cultivate an aristocracy, and the concept of the meritocracy will have to be rooted out first. The aristocracy needs independent means (I reckon that an individual estate of $20 mm in the city or $10 mm in rural areas would be the minimum) that it did not earn and that it does not pretend to merit. It also needs to be trained in the ideals of noblesse oblige and in good character.


I would add that government would likely be smaller as both the aristocrats and the subjects would find little justification in the former taxing and regulating the latter excessively. Aristocrats would also more likely to take a long-term view, since their own estates depend on a stable government.

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