Psychology vs. Public Policy | Hoover Institution

The right question to ask is how people with fundamentally different views can coexist in relative peace. The wrong answer comes via Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, who thought that liberty was “perverted” unless the Court gave way to the dominant opinion of the legislature, which is an open invitation to partisan intrigue. Following Holmes’ path of deference to the legislature and Haidt’s belief that “good people” are on both sides of all questions will necessarily lead to the wrong answer. Madison’s concern with faction, which led to the simple observation in Federalist 10 that “Enlightened statesmen will not always be at the helm,” should make it clear that naïve optimism is a terrible precondition for serious governance.

via Psychology vs. Public Policy | Hoover Institution.

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