by Mario Rizzo
The recent discussion-thread at the blog Coordination Problem regarding a Hayekian case for same-sex marriage got me thinking more generally about moral evolution.
In a market there is a process of trial and error. New products or methods of production come into existence. Some fail; others succeed. Some speculators make successful predictions of the future course of prices; others make mistakes. In general, the filter for these decisions is the profit and loss mechanism.
F.A. Hayek famously argued that the evolution of institutions, including moral and legal rules, follows a similar course, that is, trial and error. And yet the analogy with market processes is far from perfect. How do we view the trial and error process of moral rules? What is the filtering mechanism?
Right off, let me say that I do not have definite answers to these questions. I simply have some relevant thoughts. Read the rest of this entry »