Wow, you certainly live in an alternate universe!

I think Mr. Orlando is correct, prima facie. You go on to implicitly agree with him when you post this:

It’s true, of course, that there’s no clear way to measure how “authoritarian” a state is.

…which make it difficult to claim that he lives in an “alternate universe”.

While it’s true that we have no agreed upon “gauge” which measures authoritarianism, the general view is the number of personal and business decisions are moved from persons and businesses to the government; whether or not the decision provides for me a “public service” is irrelevant to the metric.

Both conservatism and liberalism can be either authoritarian or libertarian in their approach. In the US, both conservative and liberal politicians lean authoritarian rather than libertarian, which is the the crux of the problem. Liberals are authoritarian in their approach to matters like business regulation and the provision of government services by taxation; they turn into libertarians when things like abortion are discussed. Conservatives tend to be the mirror image of that.

California has higher tax rates than North Carolina, but it also provides more public services. It doesn’t restrict abortions nor does it make voting difficult. How do you weigh all these things together?

Rather simply. The most obvious expression of authoritarianism is high rates of taxation, which remove from the individual control over the fruits of their own labor.

A “slave” is simply a worker working at a tax rate of 100%, after all, without recourse.

This infringement on human rights is quickly followed by egregious business regulation. In its pure form, a regulation on business forces the movement of a one or more business decisions from the owners of that business to the State.

Hard to get more authoritarian than that.

(To head off the kneejerk: I am not opposed to all business regulations; some are necessary. You can’t have a functioning economy or society without some regulations and laws. Hence the use of the term “egregious.”)

Now, in keeping with the above article, let’s apply the “lenses” to those. The allegation in the above is that liberals see governance as a function of three things: care, fairness, and liberty. It doesn’t take much in the way of thought to realize that a governance system based on those three things alone is dysfunctional; you temper those three objectives with authority (rule of law), loyalty (which are called “mores” in Sociology 101), and sanctity (immutable values) in order to create a civil society which all can comfortably function in.

In one of your responses you refer to “fear” on the side of conservatism. Yes, there’s “fear” on the conservative side; the fear is that half our nation is so out of touch that they’d throw the rule of law, social mores, and immutable values under the bus to achieve their “care” objectives.

Hope that helps.

Data Driven Econophile. Muslim, USA born. Been “woke” 2x: 1st, when I realized the world isn’t fair; 2nd, when I realized the “woke” people are full of shit.

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