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What's wrong with authoritarianism if it's for a good cause? Watch

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    (Playing devil's advocate here as I am not sure of the answer). So what's wrong with authoritarianism if it results in some good, such as protecting people from harm, reducing undesirable behaviour in society, making society a better place for people generally?
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    Some people would say authoritarianism is wrong by definition, because its definition contradicts what they would classify as moral. Other's might argue that right and wrong can only be meaningfully judged by outcome and so if a certain instance of authoritarianism leads to an outcome which they deem as 'good' then the means of getting there must have been 'good' in that example and so authoratarianism has the ability to be 'good'. In reality it is subjective and it is ultimately futile to argue about it because there is no well definied objective standard of morality that everybody can agree with.
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    TheDefiniteArticle


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    Good cause by whose standards and at the expense of what?

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    (Original post by Grand High Witch)
    (Playing devil's advocate here as I am not sure of the answer). So what's wrong with authoritarianism if it results in some good, such as protecting people from harm, reducing undesirable behaviour in society, making society a better place for people generally?
    There is a degree of authoritarianism in even the freest societies.

    But I suppose you're referring to what people usually mean by that word, in which case the answer is pretty simple: what constitutes 'good', 'harm', 'undesirable' and 'better place' in an authoritarian system would be determined by people who couldn't possibly argue that their idea of these things is any more credible than that of people in whose interest decisions are apparently being made.

    (Original post by RayApparently)
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    I thought of him too when I read the thread title. :lol:
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    There's nothing intrinsically wrong with authoritarianism because there is no good reason to think that liberty has intrinsic value (n.b. this is not a statement without controversy but I have yet to see a strong argument which doesn't simply appeal to intuition otherwise). The strong argument against it is that for it to have any semblance of efficiency, it will need to concentrate power in the hands of a small number of people who will almost certainly be prone to providing advantage for themselves, family and friends ahead of society at large (see: North Korea).

    However, I don't see why this will always be the case. Software is developing rapidly. Many distributive etc. functions will be able to be automated on an observable basis within the near future, and this limits the problem of the concentration of power. Whether it will ever be enough, I don't know.
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    Its the unreliability of who becomes leader, and generally the type of people who become leaders of authoritarian states don't have positive traits for improving the nation, as much as its image or power.

    I support authoritarianism in the State having a right to supercede individual rights for the benefit of the nation. I can thought understand concern for an authoritarian state run by someone's views which oppose your own.

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